What went down at the #IAMORIGINAL Boss Brunch & Panel – Johannesburg

Curated within the beautiful landscape of Jozi on a peaceful Sunday, She Leads Africa in partnership with The Cut Life and Originals by Africa’s Best held a Boss Brunch and panel with the finest Motherland Mogul influencers of Africa.

The location was a hidden oasis of tranquility, The Gabriela’s Tea Room, perfect for some girl chat, champagne was flowing, the crowd was buzzing. What a beautiful Sunday.

In the era of feminism and self-love, you do find some false prophets that don’t live up to their campaign inside as loudly as they may be online.

What was important about the #IAMORIGINAL panel and brunch was that it focused on the challenges black women struggle through.

The theme that stood out from the event was the need for women to back each other up and actually mean it.

For the older and younger generation to join minds and create solutions for the Motherland Moguls that follow.

The event kicked off with a warm welcome from the bubbly Shanon Stanislaus of Originals by Africa’s Best. She spoke about the benefits of their new Coconut Creme range that has nutrition rich formulas, helping your natural hair with the foundation its needs for hair goals.

I tried some of the samples from the gift bag and I am sold on the products, which are available from Clicks nationwide or through The Originals by Africa’s best website.

We then proceeded into an hour-long networking bingo session, that had our Influencers and Motherland Moguls buzzing through the room, the energy was so lively- It felt like the best girl chat session I’ve been to in ages.

We held bingo cards that had questions such as “Who in the room has three pets, Who is an only child”. These were great ice breakers, especially for an introvert like myself.

Back to our tables, we were served incredible dishes by The Gabriela’s Tea Room patrons, everything delicious and mouthwatering.

This amazing panel was moderated by Tahira Joy of The Cut Life joined by Shanon Stanislaus (Originals by Africa’s Best), Enhle Mbali (Actress), Azania Mosaka (Broadcaster) and Jamelia Donaldson (Founder of Treasure Tress).

They spoke on self-care and beauty, ways to effectively run your business and respect yourself and values in the process.

We all got a few tips on how to reach your next Boss level in entrepreneurship through their stories, lessons and best practices.

Azania Mosaka dropped so many nuggets that had all the women in agreement throughout.

“Stick to your values and you’ll always win" – @Azania_ Click To Tweet

In the entertainment industry women are made to choose to get ahead either giving their bodies or having to dumb down their intellect so at to seem less of a threat to colleagues.

As shocking as it may sound, these are challenges most women are still overcoming.

A recurring theme throughout the Boss brunch and panel was how women need to remain educated and curious in our endeavors and not forgetting the people we build our dreams with.

“If you’re starting your race, be invaluable to your team.” – Shanon Stanislaus..

There’s only so much you can do as an individual, once you realize your expertise is invaluable, the impossible is just as attainable as anything.

We truly are better together.

On the theme of staying curious in what your interests are, Jamelia Donaldson of Treasure Tress stated…

You don’t know what you want to do until you’ve tried it all”. Click To Tweet

“ You don’t know what you want to do until you’ve tried it all”.

This tied in so well with the events hashtag of the day #IAMORIGINAL, when you apply yourself and work on what your secret sauce is, what do you really have to lose ?

All in all, this was an event, unlike any other networking event I have been to, which is saying a lot as I have been to a ton of networking sessions and gone home feeling as though I barely received much value from the speakers.

It could be just how intimate the brunch was or the fact that everyone left their egos at the door and simply wanted to celebrate each other.

I have nothing but praise for what these women aimed to share through the event and I believe that we can all learn from them.

As Motherland Moguls we are constantly inspiring those around us, we may not realize it a lot of the times, the best thing we can do is live an intention-driven life in our goals, decisions, and actions.

Work within the passion and not ego, power or status.

I’m definitely looking forward to more events from these powerhouses.


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ZANDILE MBOSHANE: ON RESTARTING & REBRANDING

Was 2018 not such a great business year for you? 2019 can be different! How about rebranding?

Zandile Mboshane shares her story about rebranding her business after its failure some years back.

This Motherland Mogul started a hair-care business, BlkSapphire, in 2014 which failed due to lack of funding amidst other challenges. She closed down the business and went back into corporate but felt unfulfilled.

Earlier this year, she decided to retry and rebrand the business under the name Hairmatology.

She tells us how she dealt with the discouragement of the failure with the first brand, how she overcame the fear of trying again and how she went about with the rebranding.

Zandile holds a B.Sc in Chemical Engineering from Wits University and describes herself as a truth seeker, “If God saw it fit to number our hairs, then there must be significance in it”, she explains her love for hair-care.

She is currently refining her product offerings and soon we will be seeing her hair-care products under the new branding.


“It really is better to try and fail than to live in fear of “what if” I fail again” – Zandile Mboshane

After being disappointed in business with BlkSapphire, what made you re-open and rebrand?

After my business failure, I decided to go back to work. I got a job as a candidate patent attorney but the reality was I was bored and my heart wasn’t in the work I was doing.

At the end of last year, I left that job without having much of a plan in place. I decided to try again at the business.

Tell us about Hairmatology, and how it is different from BlkSapphire.

The name Hairmatology is derived from the word ‘haematology’, meaning the study of disorders of the blood.

I decided to be specific in terms of what my business is about. Hairmatology is a scalp and hair-care specialist business.

My business mantra is, “Beauty from the inside out”, helping one attain healthy hair from the inside out. The difference between BlkSapphire and Hairmatology is actually more of a mindset shift than anything else.

What I’ve realized is that emotional detachment from the business goes a long way when it comes to making rational wise business decisions that move the business forward.

Having a brand name that speaks to what the business is about, helps to establish one’s brand identity in the marketplace - @ZandileMboshane Click To Tweet

Take us through the process of rebranding. What steps did you take?

Part of me didn’t want to let go of the name BlkSapphire, so initially, I decided to change only the BlkSapphire logo.

I had the logo redesigned but I was unhappy with it. I then thought about changing the name. A friend of mine told me that my intention to change the name to Hairmatology was the right move because the hair-care market is highly competitive to the point of saturation, so having a brand name that speaks to what the business is about without having to explain it helps to establish one’s brand identity in the marketplace.

I went ahead with the name change with the CIPC and applied for a trademark (that’s still pending). I then used my creative talents to design the new logo.

When you fail at something, your confidence takes a knock. Rebranding for me was a process of rebuilding my self-esteem and confidence -@ZandileMboshane Click To Tweet

What challenges can one expect when rebranding and what has been your biggest challenge?

The challenge for a lot of start-up entrepreneurs is the lack of awareness when it comes to protecting their intellectual property.

A lot of entrepreneurs disclose their innovations without having the right protection in place be it in the form of a trademark, design or patent.

Emotional attachment to the old name was a challenge for me, it took some work to let go. My biggest challenge though was overcoming doubt and fear.

When you fail at something, your confidence takes a knock, so the rebranding was also a process of rebuilding my self-esteem and confidence in my creative talents and abilities.

...rebranding is the starting point of rebuilding the business. Click To Tweet

What has rebranding taught you about creating a great brand?

It has taught me not to despise small steps of progress. Ultimately big successes are achieved through the cumulative effect of incremental steps of success.

There’s a part of me that wanted to say to myself that all you did this year externally in the business was rebrand but I had to remind myself that this is the starting point of rebuilding the business.

Any lessons you have learned from the failure of BlkSapphire?

BlkSapphire was a labour of love but I wasn’t strategic and aggressive enough when it came to pursuing opportunities to drive sales.

The biggest lesson was definitely learning to overcome fear so I could try again. I had to learn to trust in my abilities again and learn how to fail forward.

It really is better to try and fail rather than live in fear of “what if” I fail again.

How has rebranding positively impacted your business?

It’s brought about a clarity of purpose and a focused vision of what the business is all about. I’m still working on refining my product offerings so that they exceed the customer’s expectations.

At this point, I can’t measure the value of the rebranding on a monetarily but three years from now, measured from the point of rebranding, I’ll be able to measure the impact of rebranding by comparing it to the three years I ran the business as BlkSapphire.

 

If you had to dye your hair, which color would it be?

Platinum blonde! I think that the contrast between my dark skin and the hair color would look great, plus I’m looking forward to the day when I’m completely grey!


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