Derek Alberts reflects on the 4th SMME Seminar hosted by the BSC recently. Salute the new generation of entrepreneurs who are starting to make a real difference. Having ditched the baggage of hand-outs, victimhood and entitlement, these entrepreneurs take full responsibility for their actions. Much as they savour and celebrate success, they learn from mistakes and share a common trait – that of being unashamedly passionate about their business.


CAPTION (Ltr) BSC chair Reginald Nyadeni, Hulamin CEO Richard Jacob, KZN First Lady May Mkhize, Somta Tools CEO Alan Connolly and BSC general manager Di Gaskin at the SMME seminar.


Salute the new generation of entrepreneurs.


Entrepreneurial training, the kind behind a desk and in front of a whiteboard, must rank as one of the senseless exercises imaginable. The mind boggles at the contradictions that underpin this abominable practice that wastes money, achieves nothing and merely entrenches the sense of despair that drove trainees to seek the miracle cure of entrepreneurship in the first place. Curiously, the challenge to the convention – that directionless people with no skills can be turned into entrepreneurs with a hour or two of tuition – has been strangely muted from quarters that should know better. Imagine the delight then, to discover a culture of criticism among aspirant and practicing entrepreneurs. The setting was the fourth annual SMME Seminar hosted by the Business Support Centre (BSC) at the Sinodale Centre in Pietermaritzburg recently.