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Running A Start-up With A full-time Job? Hard Work, But Not Impossible

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first_imgMany believe they have to give up formal employment and a stable salary to pursue their entrepreneurial dreams. But Kenyan entrepreneur Alex Mwaura Muriu (27) has proven it is possible to do both. Muriu is the founder of Farm Capital Africa, a new crowdfunding model that enables investing in small-scale African agri-preneurs. This week, Muriu’s initiative won second place in the 2015 Innovation Prize for Africa.He is currently also working full-time as digital brand manager at the Kenya Commercial Bank, and believes he would have struggled to get Farm Capital Africa to where it is today if he wasn’t employed as well. As a young father, husband and entrepreneur, Muriu requires a stable salary to get his start-up off the ground, while being able to put food on the table.But how has he managed to do both jobs at once? Muriu says it hasn’t been easy, and warns that divided attention can put entrepreneurs at risk of losing both positions. However, some tactics have helped him do both.Get the right managers in place“One of the smartest things I did was getting on board my co-founder, Jason Musyoka, who is the chief operations officer at Farm Capital Africa.”Muriu explains that managing finance and operations are one of the most time-consuming tasks of running a company, and he needed someone able to focus on the financial details full-time, which he admits is not his strength.“So when I took Jason in I knew that about 60% of my time would be saved by having him there… it really saved me numerous headaches.”Muriu then found someone who could efficiently undertake project management. “Now with these two [managers] in place, my role in the company really came down to fundraising. And that’s not something I need to do from 8am to 8pm.”Working 14-16 hours a dayMuriu says he holds most meeting between 6:30 and 8:30am before work. He also utilises his lunch hour to meet investors, and then between 6pm and 9pm after work. This can translate into 14-16 hour working days.“And then there are weekends, especially Saturday mornings, and my wife knows I won’t be home,” he says.“I relax a bit on Sunday, and then Monday we get back on the climb again… But then again I am a young person. I can do it because my body is still in that place where I can work many long hours and still survive.”Be honest with potential employersHe also advises others looking to be employed while running a start-up to be honest with their employer and ensure there is no conflict of interest.Time management is also essential, as both jobs need to be given enough attention so that neither fall by the wayside.“If you are going to run a business while being employed, you will have to get used to the idea of long working hours, because you still have to give your employer the best,” he continues.However, he notes entrepreneurs juggling both employment and entrepreneurship might also have to accept that their start-up’s growth will be slower than they want it to be. “But that’s okay, because striking that balance in the interim until your business gets to a point where it can pay you a salary is important for success of the start-up. So be patient and plan your time really well.”Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Wimebledon 2017: I’m still in shock myself, says Sam Querrey after knocking out Andy Murray

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first_imgAndy Murray’s Wimbledon title defence evaporated on Centre Court in a painful five-set demise to Sam Querrey on Wednesday as the hip injury that has dogged the world number one throughout the tournament finally got the better of him.Murray’s hopes of becoming the first Briton to retain a grand slam title since Fred Perry in 1936 were shredded as he hobbled helplessly to a 3-6 6-4 6-7(4) 6-1 6-1 quarter-final defeat.The encounter ended in almost brutal fashion, as Murray struggled to move freely around the court in the final two sets and the big-serving Querrey ruthlessly put him to the sword, wrapping up victory with his 27th booming ace.Despite the best efforts of the Centre Court crowd to cajole a miracle recovery from the limping Briton, Murray’s troublesome hip proved beyond help and he was swiftly dispatched, with the final two sets taking just under 47 minutes.Querrey can now lay claim to the title of Wimbledon’s chief giant-killer, after slaying then champion Novak Djokovic last year. He becomes the first American man to reach a grand slam semi-final since Andy Roddick at Wimbledon in 2009.”I’m still in shock myself,” he said after setting up a semi-final encounter with Marin Cilic.”I didn’t start my best but kept with it and kept swinging and I hit my groove in the fourth and fifth sets.”It feels great and it’s a dream come true … to get to a semi-final and have it happen at Wimbledon makes it a bit more special.”advertisementHaving toured the game’s most awkward and unconventional opponents in the opening four rounds, Murray finally got to face a more routine tennis archetype.There are few surprises with Querrey’s game. He stands at 6 foot 6 inches (1.98 metres) and uses his giant frame to launch bullets from the sky and backs up his huge serve with an occasional haymaker forehand.His gameplan seemed to involve turning Centre Court into a firing range which brought him little success in the opening set, but as Murray’s movement became increasingly pained, the match turned emphatically in the American’s favour.Querrey would have been hard pushed to imagine such a glorious ending as Murray punished him almost at will in the opening set, when it was Murray’s serve that did the greater damage and the 29-year-old seemed wracked with nerves.Murray claimed that in 28 minutes and there was barely a hint of his vulnerability when he broke for a 4-3 lead in the second.There were stunned murmurs of discontent from the home crowd, however, as Querrey broke twice to level the match, wrapping up the second set with a beautiful backhand winner.That still seemed only a momentary blip for the champion, who broke immediately at the start of the third set to move back into a short-lived ascendancy.Querrey struck back in the 10th game forcing the set into a tiebreak and while Murray held his nerve to move back into the lead, from that point the writing was on the wall.The home fans willed their man to scramble freely around the court, but his grimaces told their own story as he looked up to his box and seemed to mouth “it’s gone, it’s gone” in the fourth set.Querrey won nine games in a row to take the fourth and open up a 3-0 lead in the fifth, before breaking again to move one game from victory.Two Querrey aces helped bring up three match points and one more finished the job off, leaving Murray to salute the home fans with an almost apologetic wave goodbye.”The whole tournament I’ve been a little bit sore,” Murray told reporters.”But I tried my best right to the end, gave everything I had. I’m proud about that.”last_img read more

Prajakta Sawant chastises BAI for Badminton World Championship snub

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first_imgIndia’s doubles player Prajakta Sawant has come out and rebuked Badminton Association of India (BAI) for withdrawing her name without consent from the mixed doubles category of the Badminton World Championships.Sawant’s entry along with her Malaysian partner Yogendran Khrishnan was earlier accepted but it was later withdrawn and an all-Indian pair was selected.According to Badminton World Federation (BWF) rules for eligibility and processing of entries of World Championships, “in the event that players from two different Member Associations compete together as a pair, each player will be counted as 1/2 an entry for the respective Member Association in that event”.”I feel very sad to announce that Badminton Association of India has withdrawn my mixed doubles entry with Yogendran Krishnan without informing me or without my consent. This is a very unprofessional thing done by BAI,” Sawant wrote on her twitter handle.I feel very sad to announce that Badminton Association of India has withdrawn my Mixed Doubles entry with Yogendran Krishnan (Malaysia) without informing me or without my consent.This is very unprofessional thing done by Badminton association of India (BAI) @Ra_THORe @BAI_Mediaprajakta sawant (@prajakta_sawant) June 29, 2018Sawant also said that the young Indian pair of Rohan Kapoor and Kuhoo Garg, who were ranked 67th in the April 26 World Championship qualification ranking, were selected in their place despite being lower ranked then them in BWF chart at the cut off date.”Our entry was confirmed by both sides from Malaysia as well as India but BAI withdrew my entry without my permission just to give an lndian pair a chance who is ranked 67 according to the qualification date of World Championships and we were ranked 51 according to World Championships 2018 qualification date.”advertisementOur entry was confirmed by both sides from Malaysia as well as India but BAI withdrew my entry without my permission just to give an lndian pair a chance who is ranked 67 according to the qualification date of World Championships and we were ranked 51 according to WC… @Ra_THORe pic.twitter.com/JRG5Ge9lQAprajakta sawant (@prajakta_sawant) June 29, 2018Also read – Malaysia Open 2018: PV Sindhu, Kidambi Srikanth reach semi-finalsJwala Gutta also reacted to the controversy and apparently supported Sawant saying she also had to fight “against the biggies” for similar reasons.”Well that’s always been the case wasn’t it?? When I was playing it always happened to me…why do u think I fought against the biggies? Is this anything new?” Gutta tweeted.Well thats always been the case wasnt it?? When I was playing it always happened to me…why do u think I fought against the biggies? Is this anything new?Gutta Jwala (@Guttajwala) June 29, 2018However, the BAI defended its decision, saying that Sawant’s entry was withdrawn since her partner Yogendra is a Malaysian citizen.FOR ALL BADMINTON COVERAGE”Doubles partner of Prajakta is a Malaysian citizen. As such BAI is not empowered to send the name of a Malaysian citizen in Indian team. That is why we have to withdraw the pair,” BAI president Himanta Biswa Sarma told PTI.Interestingly, Prajakta and Yogendran had competed in the 2017 World Championship at Glasgow. They lost in the second round to the Indian combo of Pranaav Jerry Chopra and N Sikki Reddy.”What happened earlier I do not know. But as a responsible person I cannot recommend entry of a Malaysian citizen from BAI. BAI can face big problem if we do that without clearance of MEA and sports ministry, if at all we have to even consider such an eventuality.”Sawant also alleged that the young pair got selected as they are part of the Gopichand academy.”I know why this injustice has happened because the players who have qualified for World Championships are from Gopichand Academy and one of the daughters of executive committee member,” she wrote.Championships 2018 qualification date.I know why this injustice has happened because the players who have qualified for World Championships are from Gopichand Academy.These things are happening for many years and now I cannot take this injustice. @BAI_Media @Ra_THORe pic.twitter.com/Ph74UwkDYVprajakta sawant (@prajakta_sawant) June 29, 2018″These things are happening for many years and now I cannot take this injustice. Despite not included in National Camp I have been performing professionally to get good World ranking but still association and the concerned coaches have done injustice with me.”This was a very, very unprofessional move by Badminton Association of India and it’s my right to fight for it.”advertisementDespite not included in National Camp I have been performing professionally to get good World ranking but still association and the concerned coaches have done injustice with me. @BAI_Media @Ra_THORe pic.twitter.com/5ZyUXeYlHrprajakta sawant (@prajakta_sawant) June 29, 2018Sawant and Yogendran have been playing together for the last year and a half. She has been struggling to get Indian partners in mixed doubles and is being sponsored by The New Vision Badminton Academy in Kuala Lumpur, which is being owned by Yogendran, since 2014.She has been locked in a legal battle with the BAI and chief coach P Gopichand since filing a case in November 2012 in the Bombay High Court, when she accused Gopichand of causing “mental harassment” after she was refused entry to the national coaching camp in Hyderabad.(With PTI inputs)last_img read more