Rebecca Enonchong is a Cameroonian technology entrepreneur promoting the advancement of Africa’s ecosystem. She began her entrepreneurial career in 1999 with the launch of AppsTech, a software solutions company focused mainly on Oracle technology.
Enonchong built the multi-million dollar firm with little or no funding. She was determined to succeed and was armed with a well-structured business plan.
Instead of being discouraged by the situation, she channelled her entrepreneurial strength into creating Appstech. Despite the milestone, she said she constantly learns from her challenges and wins.
This, in turn, has always prompted her to ask herself, “What can I do to help other entrepreneurs avoid my mistakes”. She does this by promoting tech in Africa and giving business advice.
Here are some business lessons to learn from the tech entrepreneur, Rebecca Enonchong.
Make your reality
The reality created in the business world is that of difficulty. To her, your reality is what you make up in your head, not what others make up for you.
She developed and embraced her reality. This makes her oblivious to the harsh reality of the entrepreneurial world. In turn, she became bold and confident in starting her business.
She built a global multi-million dollar company with very little savings and no financial support.
She used the first two weeks to write a business plan to attain it. While doing this, she was sincere and realistic with herself since it was for business.
She laid out all the business pros and cons and strategies to counter them. She said, “As I did this, my business model changed significantly from what I first intended. Over the years, of course, it changed more”.
Have a well-thought personal business plan
Being frank with herself while writing her business plan helped her to discover the trajectory she wanted her business to take from the beginning.
She said, “I realised by developing my plan that the type of customers that must purchase my offerings was multinational. That meant that I also needed to be a multinational”.
To achieve this, she leveraged the internet. She created her website in both English and French. She tailored her website to international companies’ own to ensure a multinational standard.
Thanks to her business plan, she overcame some of the cons of starting a business with little money—issues such as office space and hiring qualified personnel.
So, she utilised a virtual business address as an office address. She also did not add a title to her business card. This allows the flexibility of being both the CEO and an employee.
With these issues resolved, she could represent and portray her company as a worldwide firm.
Fake it to make it but never sell more than what you can deliver
She landed her first customer (a multinational company) at a conference she paid a thousand dollars to attend by properly presenting her business.
Although she presented her business as global, it was only her initially. She said, “Of course, they had no clue I was a one-woman machine. They didn’t have to, either. They need technical assistance, which I knew I could supply.”
Employ the best or invest in training the brightest
She said, “Each individual I hired, from my assistant to my technical and executive team, had to have worked or lived overseas and speak at least two languages.
I sought out the best minds in the industry and sometimes courted them for months before they came on board”.
She even goes so far as to seek out the smartest members of the African community. This includes countries such as China, Korea, India, France, and the United Kingdom.
Some of these people were smarter than she was. She went as far as training some brilliant ones that have great potential.
AppsTech established seven operations on three continents and clients in more than 50 countries within four years. It has also established itself as the market leader.
Focus on the largest market possible
From inception, she defined the market her business would cater to. Although her company approach was novel then, it helped her score some important business deals in her first few years.
So, while her competitors concentrated on the local consumers, she focused on the more profitable global market. She could dominate an undeveloped market since her business model was built to be global from the beginning.