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  • 10 Things to do when your business is struggling

    What is the best advice for struggling entrepreneurs? originally appeared on Quora – the knowledge sharing network where compelling questions are answered by people with unique insights.

    Answer by Evan Asano, Founder and CEO of Mediakix, a leading influencer marketing company.

    The first thing to do is figure out why you’re struggling. There’s a lot of reasons a business can struggle, but often times it’s due to sales. As Mark Cuban often says, sales solves all problems.

    One of the biggest lessons I learned in bootstrapping my own business was that you have to invest in growth. That’s why it’s so rare you hear of businesses succeeding without raising at least some capital or loans. When you’re struggling, it’s counter-intuitive, but that’s when you have to spend more in sales. Cut costs in other areas, but never under capitalize your sales efforts.

    Investing in sales starts with yourself. You cannot be a leader of a company and not understand the sales process inside and out. The best entrepreneurs have sold their product and were the company’s first and often times best sales person. There comes a time in the growth cycle, when the CEO or founder has to step away from sales to focus on other areas, but the company’s leader should always have deep ties to the sales process and team.

    Here are some other things to do:

    1.Create a don’t do list

    As the leader of the company, there’s a list of things you should not be doing. Anything you can reasonably delegate or outsource, you should. When you become an entrepreneur, you stop getting to do the things you like to do and do the most important things to be done.

    2.Do the hard things first

    Don’t hesitate on having hard conversations. Prioritize your to do’s with the things you least want to do at the top. Often times these are the most important to do. If you don’t, you’ll have a long to do list of things you don’t like doing or don’t want to do, and it will seem insurmountable. Then you’ll hate your life, not want to get out of bed and your business will fail

    3.Hire the absolute best people you can find

    Spend the extra time doing this. It’s one of the biggest challenges businesses have. That’s true from small start-ups all the way up to Google, but investing in right people team will be one of the best investments you make. Having the right core team will make the difference between success and failure. It can seem impossible to find the time to hire well, but trust me in knowing that not hiring well will cost you far more time.

    4.Get good at sales

    You don’t have to be selling, but you do have to understand the process. Meet regularly with the team. Understand their pain points. Set realistic and achievable goals and reward the high performers.

    5.Invest in sales

    Make sure everyone on your sales team has all the tools they need. There are million of them now. Sales tools will have one of the highest ROI of any aspect in your business, so get the best ones for your team.

    6.Learn relentlessly

    You don’t know what you don’t know. And if you’re struggling in business, then you hardly know anything. Here’s a problem that’s entirely in your control and fixable. Learn every day. Everything from Quora to podcasts on business and entrepreneurship to books. Make it you hobby. There’s never been easily access to information and learning. Have an area you don’t feel strong in? Search that topic on Udemy and buy the top three courses and get to work.

    7. Stop trying to make money and provide value instead

    If you can solve someone’s problem, then they’ll stick with you and they’ll tell their friends. If you’re solving one person’s problem, then it’s likely that others have this problem and you have a business, now you just have to tell people about it.

    8.Stop networking and sell

    There’s a lot written out there about how important events, meet ups and networking on are for entrepreneurs. And for those with the time, they can be great. If I had to pick getting good at selling or getting good at networking, I would pick selling every time. If you can sell, you will not fail. Cut out the distractions.

    9. Find support

    Meet and spend time with other entrepreneurs. Businesses in all different categories tend to have similar problems and similar solutions. Share learning and become a resource to a peer group.

    10. Take breaks

    Entrepreneurship is an incredibly stressful path. If you’re the type of person that’s drawn to it, you’ll find it hard to get away from and hard to stop working. Take regular breaks. Don’t work all weekend. Take one day off. Get out and exercise regularly. Take care of yourself. You need the rest and breaks to perform at your maximum. Otherwise, you’ll fool yourself into thinking working 80 hours weeks is productive and eventually crash and burn.

    Source: inc.com


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  • Bunna Bank to Get New CEO

    Bunna Bank S.C is set to endorse Negusu G.Egziabher as its new CEO after the board of directors selected him from three potential candidates. The Bank announced Negusu’s appointment on Tuesday, February 7, 2017. Negusu, the former president of Lion International Bank S.C, was selected out of three candidates who applied for the position. The other candidates were senior bankers from Awash International Bank and Nib Bank.

    “All we have left to do is negotiate benefits with the new CEO,” Tibebu Eshetu (Eng.), chairperson of Bunna’s Board told Fortune. “Then the selection will be endorsed by the board and sent to the National Bank of Ethiopia.”

    Negusu will be Bunna’s third CEO, following Negede Abebe and Eshetu Fanatye, who were the founding and second CEOs of the Bank respectively.

    Sources close to the selection process told Fortune that Negusu’s appointment was not unanimously decided.

    CEOs in the banking industry need to fulfill the criteria set by the National Bank, which directs that all people nominated to be CEOs should have at least eight years of banking experience, with half that time spent in a managerial position. Negusu has close to two decades of experience in the banking industry.

    He spent 15 years at the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia (CBE) in different positions, including vice president. He has a Bachelor’s Degree in economics from Addis Abeba University (AAU) and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Greenwich University, England. His latest post was as president of Lion Bank, where he worked for three years. He was then replaced by Getachew Solomon, Lion’s current president, in 2014.

    During Nigusu’s tenure, Lion saw its profits shoot up from 75.4 million Br to 127 million Br. He left the Bank for personal reasons. Bunna’s former CEO Eshetu, resigned from his position as of October 28, 2016, citing health concerns. His assumption of the position at Bunna came following the resignation of the former CEO, Eshetu. However, some sources who work at the Bank connected his departure to his contentious relationship with the board

    Prior to his resignation Eshetu was on sick leave for almost five months following a car accident that put him in hospital.

    At the time, Tadesse Chinkel took over as acting CEO. Tadesse has worked for Bunna for the past eight years and has almost four decades of experience in the industry. He has served as interim CEO three times: during the departure of Bunna’s first CEO, while Eshetu was on sick leave after the car accident, and after Eshetu’s departure.

    “I don’t know why the board took so much time choosing someone,” said a senior manager at Bunna. “It would be better for Bunna to look at recruiting from within instead of looking outwards.”

    “There are people who are capable of filling the post,” the manager added.

    Established in 2009, Bunna currently has over 107 branches. Bunna controls around four percent of the total income of all the private banks. The Bank currently has around 11,000 shareholders and a paid up capital of 760 million Br.As of June, 2016 the Bank reported a profit after tax of 187 million Br, a 40pc growth from the preceding year.

    Source: addisfortune

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  • Saddique Amba Monastery -Ethiopia’s ancient reserves

    Ethiopian ancient monasteries are usually located in remote places far from the easily accessible locations. Most are located up in the mountains. It takes determination and love of adventure to go and explore these magnificent ancient creations. The constructions are intentionally made far out from central and main cities so that it can create peace and solitude to the priests. 

    If you wish to explore these places it requires courage to climb through ropeways and climbing challenging rocks. Despite the hardship to climb up the ancient treasures you will see the churches paintings and treasures which makes it all well worth it.

    One destination which is a must go is Saddique Amba Monastery. It’s located in between the massive Simien Mountains. The all-inclusive monastery is far away from everything allowing travelers to enjoy a refreshing air, surrounding attractions and of course the wild lives up-close.

    It requires two hours of trekking from the famous land mark at the mountain, Simien Lodge. To date only few travelers have made it to the monastery due to fear of sheer drop rocks and challenging trekking to reach to the monastery.

    The monastery was erected back in 1640 by the monk named Welde Saddique who wanted to create solitude and peaceful prayer place. Legend has it that during the communist regime of Ethiopia most of the church precious treasures were stolen and never recovered. However it did not make the church any less important. The lifestyle of the Moncks, the church paintings and the surround attractions are breathtaking.   

    The inner temple is very restrictive the only one who has access to it is the highest priest.  But do not get disappointed because you have made it through to one of the temples which rarely host visitors. The priests are hospitable and charming telling you everything about the temple and its magnificent history. The mountain park is full of animals creating access to the wild lives who roam around freely at their natural habitat. The park is preserved as one of the national parks lodging several endemic wild lives that are only found in Ethiopia.

    If you just love to admire ancient architectures and churches there are several places to explore from near the mountain and it’s allowed to go inside. The ancient architectures of the country portrayed at Lalibela and Gondar churches hewn from gigantic rocks within the earth are few of globally registered heritages that will take your exploration to the next level. The best part is this one allows you to get inside and explore the UNESCO registered global treasures. 

    This spectacular region has been inhibited by farmer villagers since 2,000 years ago. They live near the spiky mountain peaks, deep valleys and sharp precipices. Travel to this historical place offers a rare opportunity to climb some of Africa’s highest peaks including at Ras Dashen (4620m), Buyit Ras (3250m), Bwahit (4430m) as well as explore the ground churches.  

    Source: fanabc.com 


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  • "Yifter the Shifter" passes away

    Miruts Yifter, one of the greatest long distance runners of all time, has died at the age of 72 in Toronto, Canada on Thursday, December 22, 2016.

    The Ethiopian was a double gold medallist at the Moscow Olympics in 1980, winning both the 5,000 meters and 10,000 meters in the Russian capital. Often referred to as “Yifter the Shifter”, he died from respiratory problems in Toronto.

    He first came to international prominence at the Munich Olympics of 1972 when he won bronze medal in the 10,000 meters race.

    Miruts would have been one of the favorites for gold four years later – in both 5,000 and 10,000 – had his country not been one of 29 nations to boycott the Montreal Games in protest at the IOC's refusal to ban New Zealand.

    Many countries, mainly African countries, were unhappy that New Zealand's All Blacks rugby team had toured apartheid South Africa in 1976.

    Despite this setback, Miruts continued to be a dominant force in athletics, enjoying victories over both his main distances at the World Cup meetings of 1977 and 1979.

    He inspired a generation of African runners, including the great Haile Gebreselassie, who admitted: "Miruts has been everything to me and my athletics career.

    "When I started running, I just wanted to be like him. He is the reason for who I'm now and for what I have achieved.

    "For me, he is the best athlete Ethiopia ever had, after the great Abebe Bikila."

    Miruts is a double Olympic gold medalist, an Ethiopian national icon and one of the finest athletes to grace the running track. The effects of having suffered a collapsed lung, compounded by his old age led to his death.

    Miruts had been hospitalized for nearly a year, but was recently said to have been making progress in his recovery effort. But after having fought admirably, exhibiting the same resistance and endurance that made him a household name in international sports back in the seventies and eighties, Miruts has succumbed to illness.


    His numerous accolades, unforgivable punishing running style and longevity, his ability to maintain world class fitness for so long has earned him recognition as one of the greatest athletes to have graced the Olympic track venue.

    In Ethiopia, he was idolized, a hero of the people. His heroics inspired a generation of runners to follow in his footsteps. He contributed the lion’s share to establishing the Ethiopian long distance running dynasty that has made athletes from the country among the most feared competitors in the world. The likes of Haile and Derartu Tulu have previously named Miruts Yifter as their inspiration and guiding light.

    At Coamo Puerto Rico on February 6, 1977, Miruts ran a World Best for the half-marathon of 1:02:57.

    At the Moscow Olympics, part of the mystery surrounding Miruts was the question of his age, which was reported to be between 33 and 42. Miruts refused to give a definitive answer, telling reporters:

    "Men may steal my chickens; men may steal my sheep. But no man can steal my age."

    Due to his abrupt change in speed when executing his kick to the finish, Miruts acquired the nickname “Yifter the Shifter.”

    In more recent years he had been a team coach at major events but moved to Canada, where he spent his last days.

    Miruts is survived by his wife and seven children.

    Source:Ethiopian Reporter

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