Okay, January is done already, and a review of the year’s intentions finds me wanting. Grand plans for new results are already slipping as the pressure of daily life builds up.

But, luckily, just before I beat myself to a pulp over this, I read the book Originals by Adam Grant, in which he poses the argument that ”procrastination serves to provide a platform for creativity”. He gives some great illustrating examples, such as Leonardo da Vinci’s iconic painting ‘Mona Lisa’ that took 21 years to complete, and Martin Luther King’s shape-shifting “I have a dream” speech was a last-minute, on-the-spot addition to his bold narrative.

Grant goes on to say that tasks which are done immediately, under pressure and ‘to the rule’ result in in-the-box thinking, and those that are completed with less haste result in creative, innovative flair.

This is food for thought in a world where innovation seems increasingly held as the holy grail of success. Which makes one ponder if this implies that in future successful businesses will be those infused with the ongoing chaos of last-minute-itis? I don’t think so. I hope not!

Innovation is a deliberate culture and a measured intention. It requires the permission to try (and to fail) with the breathing space for teams to think in fresh and creative ways. But this needs to be coupled with structure and systems if ideas are to be turned into tangible results.

As the wise man says “no one ever got rich from a good idea – it’s the implementation of it that counts”, the answer is to place a value on fresh thinking and innovation by rewarding it, and couple creative teams to strong commercial minds in order to make the right things happen.

In this issue, we look at innovation in its various forms and we start with a small business, Water Chemicals & Technology, who is dedicated to protecting our most valuable resource.

We look at successful businesses that started with nothing but gave themselves some time to grow. 2019 is well on its way and it’s time we all get stuck into our budgeting plan – both personal and business.

Click here to read more about this issue of The Catalyst.

Catherine Wijnberg

Fetola CEO

Oh, yeah baby, bring it on!

December is halfway done, and the year a few days from over.  It’s time to breathe in some deep holiday breaths and recharge for 2019. Time to swop the stuffy suits for a swimming cozi and elbow out team talks for cricket, walks on the beach, and braais with family & friends.

I love the South African tradition of ‘total shutdown’ over this season (with apologies to my friends for whom this is the busiest period; your time at the beach will come later).  Research says that holidays of three weeks have a greater impact than little ones, so thumbs up to that!

Personally, my favourite holiday activity is a New Year hike – walking out of one year into the next, shedding the skin of the past as I go. Traditionally one reaches a point around day three when the roles of mother, daughter, employer, partner, etc, fall away, and one is left with the beautiful, liberating question: “Who am I really?”.

This year in my quiet moments I shall be pondering the question: “What if I reached my full potential?” and working on ways to shed the blanket of fear that keeps the mind dodging away from the answers. I look forward to an ongoing diet of uplifting books such as the Power of the Subconscious Mind (Joseph Murphy PhD), Becoming (Michelle Obama), 21 Lessons for the 21st Century (Yuval Noah Harari), and definitely Start with Why (Simon Sinek)

My hope is that this edition of Catalyst will bring some new thinking and unlock expansive thought for you too, for 2019 promises to be an amazing year – filled with possibility.

In this edition of Catalyst, we tour the country and visit some different attractions and how you can do so while reducing your carbon footprint, and we help you prepare for seasonal dips and spikes. The SAB Foundation released an impact report which highlights the Tholoana Programme and the great things the entrepreneurs on the programme have achieved. It’s a great read!

Click here to read more about this issue of The Catalyst.

Catherine Wijnberg

Fetola CEO

Growing up on a plot gave Lilian Kokera her green fingers. “My parents raised chickens and pigs that they sold to the church and around the community,” she explains.

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Arthur Sithole, 32, shows that vision and an appetite for risk pays off.

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When asked what their advice to aspiring business owners is, many entrepreneurs agree that if at first you don’t succeed, dust yourself off and try again.

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Nkashi Mphahlele (28) has always known that he is an entrepreneur at heart. However, he wanted to impress his parents and studied for a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry and Chemical Technology.

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Gerold Keffers is proof that hard work, persistence, and self-belief — values he lives by — pay off. He went from working as a security guard at a winery to a driver at a wine tank manufacturing company, Velo SPA, where he rose to the rank of chief technician.

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Growing up Mbudzeni Musie says that many nursery schools in Venda were run like a babysitting service instead of institutions for nurturing early childhood development.

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While working as an engineer at Eskom, Freddy Sibuyi had an epiphany. He wanted to provide for his family in a bigger and more meaningful way. This, he realised, was something that his job couldn’t do no matter how excellent he was at it.

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Biozest is a South African energy drink sold in South Africa. By all accounts, the product is successful. But this is not what drives Sibusiso Tshabalala to work relentlessly on turning Biozest into an international product.

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