South Africans were privileged to host Dean Graham, a world well known successful entrepreneur. Graham is not just an entrepreneur but an advocate for the youth in becoming entrepreneurs, as opposed merely seeking employment. Mapepeza correspondent, Lerato Phosisi interviewed Dean during his short stay in Mzansi recently.
Dean uses his own experience of failures, trials and hardships as the backbone of his teachings. He shows young people exactly the errors they need to be aware of and to avoid in particular when it comes to entrepreneurship.
He firmly believes that success is a poor teacher when it comes to business and careers. “We give basics sales skills, using real scenarios and teaching them that failure is an option they can use to bounce back and become a success.
“I tried to work but realised at some stage that I have the ability to sell. Then I got into direct selling (for commission). Later, I got sick from taking 20% and making the other person rich. Then my journey of entrepreneurship started and ever since it has never stopped,” said Graham.
“I always like to advise kids to start at an early age, from either 10 or 13 years old, in working on whatever they want to be in life. They shouldn’t wait to be 40 years in order to decide on the career of their choice and start the journey. If you’re going to fail, fail a lot and do it while young because failure is a learning curve,”
Dean Graham said he attributes his business success to learning from his shortcomings. He currently runs five firms. “Failing is fantastic. I have failed many times to be were I am today. Most people think having money is the reward to success in businesss. But failure is the part of life that enables one in becoming the best. If you do not fail, you will forever be average and you can only follow everyone else,” he said.