Kelebogile the Entrepreneur
I lost my father at a young age and I remember trying to Google his name and nothing came up. He was never at home because he was always working, working for someone else. That for me said this is not how life should be, you need to leave a form of legacy and something for your children. Entrepreneurship is a way to do that. I went into it to create freedom, create a legacy and a name that will live on after I’m gone.
The Entrepreneurial Journey So Far
I registered my company in 2013, so it’s not that long. But I’ve always provided services that I didn’t know were a form of entrepreneurship because it was not defined. I was employed full time but I would help people in strategies for their companies and sell small products to friends and families. I lost quite a lot of money because the business wasn’t really defined and that was a good lesson.
I left the security of a full time job in December 2014 and jumped full time into the entrepreneurial space in the fear of becoming like my father and many other people, who work for years but barely have much to show for generations that follow long after them. I had been working on different projects, consulting for several people but finally decided to leave my comfort zone.
Let’s Talk About Keglope Investments
Keglope Investments is a multidisciplinary private company. The primary business is the manufacturing of graduation and academic gowns. We also do legal regalia, school uniforms, medical and general industrial outfits. Unlike many other companies, we do not import ready -made products and do embroidery or customizing; we do everything from scratch here. We are getting to a space where people will be aware they can actually stock from us. Partnering with another company, we are also involved in the agricultural industry where we do agro-processing with the aim to eradicate poverty and to provide food security solutions.
Keglope is solely owned and I also happen to be in consortiums with other companies. We are also in the reusable energy space, and we are looking at providing solutions to the electricity situation in the country.
Managing Different Facets of the Business
It’s all about passion. When you doing something you really love and you attach a meaning to it, it makes it very easy. I try to stretch everything into the 24 hours that we all have.
The bad things that happen in life are lessons; always find a meaning and a lesson in them
Challenges as a business lady
One of the challenges is that you lose out on your social life. I don’t think I have a normal social life for a young person but it’s the price I’m willing to pay now. Your acquaintances and business partners become your social life. As a business person, funding is a big challenge. Trying to maintain the cash flow, wearing different hats as the director, operations manager, maintaining staff and clients are also challenges.
Kelebogile as a Person
Kelebogile is the youngest out of five children. I’m originally from Brits in the Northwest Province. I lost my dad at the age of 10 and was raised by my mother who did quite a good job. I learnt to be very independent at a young age since I was the youngest and all alone with my mom while my other siblings where trying to find means of survival. I studied Health Psychology at the University of Johannesburg. I wanted to be a doctor, but I didn’t qualify because of my matric results. I think one day, I will still be a doctor – maybe a doctor of Philosophy.
Kelebogile as a Motivational speaker
I never in a million years thought I would be into speaking until I joined the Leadership 20/20. It is a company run by DJ Sbu and Nicolas Regisford. Just after I left my job, I enrolled at Leadership 20/20 for a course called ‘Develop the Leader within You’ presented by great speaker and author, Dr Richie Achukwu. We had to pick tasks as to how to be relevant in society so I decided to invest time and speak to young learners, because I saw the impact other speakers like Dr Richie had in my life. My first encounter as a speaker was in church speaking to learners and the congregation. Every other week I get to speak to young students and entrepreneurs. Speaking has helped to realize the greatness that lies within me and others. I share my challenges in my talks and also use a lot of affirmations; our society is still shy about their dreams and capabilities and prefers to hide behind their challenges and struggles. I am happy when I get off stage and people approach me or send me emails saying they are going forth in working towards their dreams.
How do you have fun?
I just started learning to play golf. It is very relaxing and helps me to focus. Itry to go to the gym at least 3 times a week to keep fit since I don’t get a lot of sleeping hours. I go to a lot of networking sessions and I do spend a lot of time with family, gaining old wisdom from the elders.
Kelebogile’s Driving Force
The idea of me creating something that other people can benefit from. Knowing that when I wake up, I’m not doing it for myself only but there are people who I have employed, who are dependent on me and can build their dreams based on what I have started.
Last Words to the Youths
The bad things that happen in life are lessons; always find a meaning and a lesson in them. Secondly, invest in your network. The company you keep is important, align it with where you want to go. Lastly, be bold! Remember that no dream is ever too small and always ask for help when you get stuck.