Failure is part of your journey, learn from it

Between 9am and 5pm, James Mwaniki is a senior management executive at an insurance firm. But after this, poultry farming takes up his time.

James’ interest in poultry farming was sparked by his upbringing in a farm where his parents kept chicken. He later set up his own farm, Anita, which he runs with his wife. They rear layers, chicken specifically kept for eggs.

His wife is in charge of day-to-day operations of the farm, which has 3,000 layers that produce 50 trays of eggs a day. Despite these significant numbers, James wants to grow Anita Farm into an even bigger business.

To help with this, The Business Coach got him in touch with Caleb Karuga, the owner of Wendy Farms, a significant player in the poultry business.

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Caleb is a former journalist who quit his job to pursue his passion for agribusiness, and now boasts three farms across the country where, among other things, he rears more than 5,000 kienyeji birds.

These are some of the entrepreneurial tips that Caleb shared with James:

1. Failure is part of the entrepreneur’s journey

Failure is inevitable in the line of entrepreneurship, and especially in the poultry business, which is prone to numerous risks, such as disease and theft. Failure, however, should be looked as an opportunity to learn, rather than an insurmountable barrier in the entrepreneurial journey.

2. Don’t diversify at the start-up level

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Focus on one line of business at a time, especially in the beginning, and don’t diversify across different industries because it shifts your focus from the growth of the business. If you intend to diversify, then do so within the same industry as the main business.

3. Don’t go into production without a market

In the poultry business, avoid going into production without having secured a market because the business will be operating at a loss. An entrepreneur’s first intention in this industry should be securing clientele, after which they then go into production, especially in the hatchery line of business where you sell one-day-old or one-month-old chicks.

4. Take up insurance

The poultry business faces numerous risks that could bring a business to its knees quickly. To give yourself a measure of security, take up an insurance cover that protects you from such risks.

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The Business CoachEntrepreneurshipPultry FarmingPoultry FarmingEggsChicken