***Warning: 100% Satire Content***
The era of the SME is upon us and as such everyone should have a profitable business. Although I don’t own a business myself, I have observed that the following practices may enhance the profitability of your business:
1. Appoint your relatives to key positions in the company
Blood is thicker than qualifications – Zimbabwean Proverb
My dear friend, please be mindful of your life. Always be aware that if you insert non relatives (vatorwa) into key positions at your SME, they will wake up one day and steal your company in a boardroom coup so dramaful that Mfundi Vundla will be recreating it on Generations, The Legacy so fast you won’t be able to say, “royalties.”
It is your duty as a Moyo to employ other Moyos so help you God. The age/aptitude/competency of your cousins is of no relevance. Remember that it is easier to overwork and underpay your relatives as they can’t take you to labour court. Besides, even if they threaten to, you can always remind them of where they were before you took them in as most people already do.
2. Once you start making money relocate your business premises for the CBD to a suburbian area such as Mt Pleasant or Borrowdale.
The more jacarandas in this area the more suburbian the area is and the more likely you should be to move there. Although your business runs on a small profit quick return model, remember that The Gulf is not your permanent portion and always be ready to move.
An addendum to this point is to tell your shop assistants to scale their friendliness according to the wealth or lack thereof of their customers. This may seem counter intuitive but remember that the more exclusive product seems the more everyone else will want it (think of Facebook in its early days).
4. Change people’s appointments without warning and apologies
Whether or not people have other things to do with their time is not any of your concern. Do not apologise when you change a person’s appointment from 8 am to 4 pm, it is simply their fault for not seeing it in the spirit.
5. Demand payments in hard cash
We all know that any money crisis that may or may not be in the republic is a fictional machination of Western beaureaucrats. Do not allow people to pay for things using EcoCash or any of its horrendous derivatives. In fact, state this on a piece of bond paper right above the untidy cardboard announcing, “NO RETURNS, NO REFUNDS, NO LAY-BYE.”
6. Have a non functional PA system.
Seeing as we’ve already established that appoinments can and should be changed without prior warning, we must make this system as air tight as possibles. Some secretaries/receptionists/ shop assistants don’t know how to give bad news with a straight and scary face. It is also true that most Zimbabweans are religious and detest lying. In the interests of your business and profitability it is therefore necessary to have a PA system that crackles as much as possible to avoid embarassing explanations.
For example, one person may announce, “ladies and gentlemen we are regretful to announce that our product is unavailabe because one of our incompetent clerks who was hired during a spate of nepotism forgot to place the order”
That will not result in disgruntled customers but will also result in a firing. With the benefits of a broken PA system however, all your customers will hear is, “ladies and gentlemen, *crackle crackle* we are regretful *crackle crackle* thank you for your patience.”
Now, your ladies and gentlemen will be too shy to ask you to repeat yourself because they don’t want people to think they’re not sharp so you’ll get away with this one.
Now finally brethren, I have one final word. All the ingredients of a successful company have been laid out before you but if your company still deigns to underperform, feel free to blame it on all the people in your village who are jealous of you and abeg not on the economy, on demand/supply projections or even on this article. Siyabonga, tatenda.