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When hard work beats talent

By King Kaka | November 6th 2019

A lyric from one of my favourite songs growing up goes like this: “This is ten per cent luck, 20 per cent skill, 15 per cent concentrated power of will, five per cent pleasure, 50 per cent pain.” 

This is Fort Minor’s song Remember The Name, the second track from their debut album The Rising Tied.

At the time, Fort Minor was among the biggest pop groups in the world.

So from the word go, I always knew talent was not enough for you to thrive. You needed to do more.

If you have come across a hard working business person and a talented person, you will notice that their work ethic is different.

Hardwork versus talent

I have met many talented people and I have to admit that most of them are full of excuses; they are lazy but pretending to be busy working on their craft and failing to put effort in the planning.

I am sure you have come across talented people on social media, but you wonder how Kenyans don’t know them.

You might be a talented salesman but you need to keep selling for you to practice on your salesman skill set.

Let me lay out my story. When I started out as a rapper, I knew I had a different style.

Every song that I composed in my rhyme book felt different from what the industry had at that time. 

I have been a hard working student and person for the longest time, but I knew this was no ordinary class work, it was the music business, and on an international level at that.

Remember that when you upload a song or any other content on YouTube, the whole world is watching.

It is important to realise that there is enough cake for everyone and the moment we come together then the cake becomes bigger. But what we don’t put into consideration is that there are multiple industries that exist within each industry.

Take for instance the fast food industry. I have witnessed the fast food rise in the Kenyan streets for the past year now - Java, KFC, Subway, Pizza Hut, Dominos, Burger King and many more. These are global brands setting up shop here. 

With their establishment, we have seen a rise in hospitality industries, the delivery industry and the technology industry. Many young riders have gotten employment as delivery people.

With clients getting their delivery in time, the brand is seen as efficient in serving the customer. Efficiency then translates into revenue for the business.

While delivery is not a fast food’s core business, it plays a role in building perception about the business. The same principle applies to your business.

You might have a great product but if your hospitality is in question or delivery system is not in place, chances are business is going to be hard.

In my case, when I had just started Kaka Klothing, business demand was through the roof before it dwindled.

A few customers complained about the quality. I had compromised on the quality of the print and it was reflecting on sales. It took time to win customers back, but I immediately fixed the quality issue.

Since I was operating from the city, I needed a delivery manager. I approached a friend who was fast and keen with logistics. When we agreed on terms and conditions, more customers were attracted to the clothing as we offered the convenience of a delivery option as opposed to every customer coming to the shop.

I might have lost a few customers along the way as a result of the mistakes I made but I gained more, in terms of the knowledge I gained during all these adjustments.

My working formulae is that your team is important to the success of your business. The team allows you do what you do best - be creative - while they do what only they know how to do. In the end, when everyone concentrates on their field, then perfection is achieved.  

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