"I really appreciate the training with Alchemy World. I have learned how to organize a business and how to grow it well. I have learned how to run realistic projects, as real solutions to real problems."
Enterprising Ethiopia with Alchemy World Addis Ababa & London facebook.com/enterprisingethiopia twitter.com/EntEthiopia
My name is Kalayu Gebreselassie, I am 23 years old and completed my Bright Future training with Alchemy World in 2010 and the New Venture Creation programme in 2013.
I am currently studying at the Department of Information Technology and Engineering at Mekele Institute of Technology and will finish my first degree, BSc this year (2014).
After completing my education I first of all want to deepen myself further in Information Communication and Technology (ICT). I will be doing my own research, but if a study opportunity comes up, I will take it. My interests are in software project management and software development, both desktop based (e.g. distributed data base applications) and web based projects (e.g. generally monitoring business processes over the Web).
Basically I will take any opportunity that fits with my research and the subjects I have studied. My preferences lie in what I am working with, not where I am working so I can work in any company or organization as long as it gives me an opportunity for future research.
I also have a big interest in doing business, especially in automotive business processes. Some friends and I are interviewing governmental offices and non-governmental offices for business opportunities. But because we are not yet professionals they haven’t shown a real interest in us. We have however already finished quite a few projects and we are accumulating specialized knowledge about these topics. We are certain that we will be accepted once we finish our education and become professionals. So I am positive about the future, that I can get a good job.
And here I can use my training with Alchemy World. For the business managers have very little knowledge and understanding of what we do. So to get a good connection with the business managers and to be able to sell our ideas to them we need to speak their “language”. We need to make them understand how they, from their perspective, can benefit from the project.
Before the training with Alchemy World we had only the skills about information technology and processes. We didn’t have a proper connection with the business managers. But with the Bright Future and the New Venture Creation training we have learned how to establish a connection with business organisations, how to make good linkage.
So far we are offering technical support to some governmental and non-governmental organisations. Our connections with them are good and we will be using these for future business opportunities; so we are networking for the future.
And we are working on different projects; we are for instance working on one software project called Members Management System. There is an interest in this system and we are offering it to some NGO’s. We are also working on another project, making a Drivers Exam Management System, which is finished and implemented and we are ready to submit it to the entrepreneur. And when the software is accepted we will receive our payment.
In the Drivers Management System we are solving a problem for the customer. But there is no possibility for growth and no future business opportunity in that project; once the problem is solved the project is finished. So we are searching for project ideas that have more growth potential and that can help us grow as entrepreneurs.
For the future I want to be a software entrepreneur. I want to solve problems in the marked based on my professional skills as a software expert. I want to have a shared software company, where we specialize in business applications. I have a very clear idea of the direction I am going in. And I am very positive about the future.
The main challenge, however is the society and especially the managers of the organisations. They don’t have enough knowledge about software technologies. So we need to educate and convince them before we can sell the projects. So far we haven’t been able so far to convince them. But we are gaining experience and we are maturing.
And we are using the skills we have from our training with Alchemy World. The most important thing we have learned in the Bright Future program was how to get the good idea that solves a problem in the market or in the society. And later in the New Venture Creation programme we learned how to implement that idea. This is important because you need to understand the problems and then understand how you can solve them with your ideas, your skills and your knowledge. And then interviewing yourself: does the project have the potential to grow and become a sustainable project that can benefit society? And can it pay my salary?
I really appreciate the training with Alchemy World. I have learned how to organize a business and how to grow it well. I have learned how to run realistic projects, as real solutions to real problems. I have learned how to understand the importance of involving your customer and how to systematically evolve your project together with the customers. I have gained an understanding of how to service the society with my skills and getting more back; for the better you service your customers, the more satisfied they are, the more business you get, and the more sustainable your business will be.