Reinvent Yourself For Success

Updated on 14 October 2019

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reinvention sme south africa

Why is reinvention important for entrepreneurs?

“If you only do what you know and what has always worked, you will leave a lot of opportunities on the table and the chances are you will be disrupted,” says Madoda Khuzwayo, founder and CEO of South Africa-based jobs and employment portal

SME South Africa speaks to Khuzwayo and two other entrepreneurs, Colleen Qvist, founder of CQ Consulting, which offers life- and business coaching and workshop facilitation and Candice Clark, managing director of human resources and recruitment company, Dynamic Talent, on the importance of personal growth and the benefits of adopting a fresh approach.

Constant growth

After 22 years in the corporate environment, Qvist left to launch her own business.

“It has been constant reinvention from where I was to where I am now. When I look back, I can hardly recognise where and what I was in the beginning.”

Reinventing oneself is incredibly important to staying relevant

Qvist says reinvention is not a once-off task and requires a lot of work internally and externally.

“Take time to self-reflect and ask if the path is right and have the guts to change the path,” says Qvist.

Looking to make a change? Khuzwayo, Qvist and Clark share what steps you can take.

On the importance of reinvention

Relevancy – I think reinventing oneself is incredibly important to staying relevant. The world is changing so fast, and we – as humans – change quickly too. We develop different interests and new philosophies as we navigate life. It makes sense that we are keep our careers in alignment with who we are and that our careers and personal brand evolve too. – Clark

Prevent stagnation – We can no longer just settle where we are, no matter how good it is. You need to keep on scanning the horizon and asking yourself, “What’s next?” and then embrace the process to get you to what that “next” is. – Qvist

Take control of change – Nothing is cast in stone… everything changes, disruption is inevitable and you must change with the times. – Khuzwayo

On recognising it’s time for change

Burnout – On a regular basis you are feeling more drained by your work than inspired by it; you are feeling a conflict between what you value in your off time and what you are having to value in your career and you feel you have to “switch on” a persona in your work. – Clark

Your work starts suffering – Entrepreneurs should look out for: a decrease in turnover; not making the budgeted bottom line; increase in customer complaints or apathy; losing customers and increased staff turnover; things seem harder than they used to be; a feeling of unease that you are missing something (also a feeling of being empty). – Qvist

On the first step

Plan ahead – It requires steady and careful planning. The aim is to transition to new industries or products/services without abruptly killing your existing cash flow. Cash is king. – Khuzwayo

Look around – You need to be present and curious. Disruption will usually come from competition outside your industry. You need to be always on the lookout for trends. With every trend lies an opportunity. – Clark

Find help – You can do this planning on your own, but it can be so much more successful and less daunting if you work with a Life Coach. You need to look at:

  • Where you are going and WHY?
  • Research on customer needs and how you can provide those needs.
  • Where are you now?
  • What are the steps needed between where you are to where you want to be?
  • What are time frames and skills and knowledge required?
  • Who will hold you accountable for doing the steps?
  • Plan to self-reflect and to not lose the big picture by getting lost in the details. – Qvist

On steps to take

Just do it!

  • Be brave.
  • Take calculated risks.
  • Spend time with yourself, so that you know who you are and what you value.
  • Always have savings – sometimes you’ve got to go out on a limb to try things out.
  • There is relief in change – especially when that change is to better align your work with who you truly are. – Clark

Know your why

  • Do a stock-take on everything you are feeding yourself – physically, mentally, spiritually and behaviourally. Are they supporting your reinvented self? Are you sabotaging your efforts? Get out of your own way.
  • Manage your stress so as to avoid distress.
  • Do embrace change and reinvention.
  • Do see that the process is not overnight.
  • Do not feel like you have to do it on your own.
  • Do know that times will be tough and it is important not to give up.
  • Do know that it will be worth it.
  • Do remind yourself of your WHY as it will get you through any HOW. – Qvist

ALSO READ: Why Constant Reinvention is the Secret To Keeping Your Business in the Game


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