How to Succeed with Your (Small) Business in Tanzania

Starting a business in Tanzania can be challenging due to different factors like lack of capital and poor marketing plan (undiognonized markets). Instead of looking on reasons which make businesses fail in Tanzania, I would like to focus our mind here on different aspects to consider, which can make a newly started business to succeed. I welcome you to dive in into the thoughts below.

Take a look on businesses in your neighbourhood and the ones you know about more. Think about those businesses which perform well but also about those which have been stagnant for years, and those which failed. What are the reasons which led to each of the mentioned results?

Surely there are many reasons, some of which are individual ones and thus beyond our knowledge. We can therefore not comprehensively jugde the failure of any business. Few common factors, however, I would like to look at which decisively determine the success or failure of a business.

  1. Proper Marketing Plan. Tanzanians are aware of using any chances possible to make business. This includes opening business at places with high traffic or near/at their homes where the neighbourhood can be provided with needed goods and services while private domestic activities are performed. Wherever the business is situated, it needs to be oriented to the needs of the customers for it to prosper. Once a business saftisfies the major needs of the people, that is when the business is likely to grow and succeed. Therefore in satisfying ones own thirst of running a business it important to consider the needs of the potential customers (type of bussiness) in the area you start your business. An easy way to find this out is to conduct a market research.
  2. You may be aware with people who go for a certain business opportunity and stay with it until they find a better business opportunity they change to. It is indeed legitimate to try out different businesses and gain experinces from them. However, this act has to be carefully reflected, especially if the outcome of the business has negative consequenses on the family you are taking care of. It has a different dimension, if have a stable income though an employment and try out different businesses. Taking responsibily for your own livelihood and that of your family is as important as being persistent to your business as it yields results.
  3. Good Management of Capital. I have come across business men and women who take money from the business for private expenditure or take products from their business for private use. This is an act – if it is all necessary – which requires much discipline. Generousity in business can cost your business. Seperation of private matters with business matters is, I think, one of the basic thing a business man or woman should do. Well, talking about capital… Capital is indeed an important factor in starting a business. A persons taking loan to start a business should be aware of the debt and the necessity to pay back the money as he or she runs the business, considering that the first months of the business may be chatacterized with losses. A huge amount of loean obviously means a huge amout of debt, and a huge debt can likely lead to inability to pay back, especially due to loss, theft or poor management. If you consider starting a small business, consider starting a business which requires you little nor no capital. Remember the Tanzanian proverb: “Mtaji wa masikini ni nguvu zake mwenyewe” (The capital of a poor person is his own strength). Please get inspired in the internet or by your friends about different business ideas which required no or little capital. You can contact us for more ideas.
  4. Learn to optimize your business. In fact, get business basics even before starting a business. Business may be easy, but being humble to learn and avoid mistakes can only help you. If you have already started your business, take time to get out of your business turmoil and learn how to optimize your business. Meet other successful business men and women, get advised by the bank, join a forum, seek a coach/counsellor and learn from different experiences, share ideas and learn from challenges. It can only help.

Do you have more factors to consider? Please, share them with us. If your have any question or concern, feel free to contact us. If you want to learn more about business, click on this link to get study materials.

All the best in your business.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *