Welcome to the very first Broke Billionaire Entrepreneur Interview for 2012, and I’m glad to say we’re kicking the year off with a bang.
This week we Interviewed the very inspirational Farah Fortune, who runs her own company, African Star, and has been selected as one of the “Mail & Guardians Top 200 South African”. Enjoy the interview, and Get Inspired!
1. Hi Farah, welcome to Broke Billionaire, please introduce yourself to our readers.
I’m Farah Fortune; ( My clients call me the “Pitbull in heels”) I run African Star Communications and Event Management. I’m a publicist by profession and I specialise in Celebrity and corporate PR.
2. You’re the owner of African Star Communications, what exactly is it that your company does?
We have 3 divisions to the company, Celebrity PR, Corporate PR and specialist event management.
Our niche in the company is taking the unknown to the known, we prefer to work with lesser known clients to the industry as we help them mould a sustainable image to the public. We prefer to work with these types of clients as repairing a damage celebrity or corporate image isn’t as fun.
3. When did you start your company and what inspired you do it?
I started the company on 20th June 2008, I decided to start the company as I was tired of having a boss, I felt like I knew what I was doing and found that I was not being paid my worth.
4. What does a typical day in the life of Farah Fortune entail?
I usually wake up at 6 am, get my daughter ready for school, and get her to school by 7:30. I try and get to the office by 8 am every morning. I will usually check my emails, which are usually guaranteed to be at 100 or more by the time I walk in. I can attend up to at least three meetings a day.
I try not to take meetings unless necessary. As I find meetings are very irrelevant and most of the stuff you talk about in meetings can be done on email. My days usually consist of acquiring interviews for my celebrity clients and product placement and media coverage for my corporate clientele. When we have events, I have to fit in all the planning in between that as well.
5. Would you encourage other young South Africans to start their own business?
I would encourage young South Africans to start their own business as it provides a platform to live your own dreams and create sustainable employment. It is also a way for the youth to build a better economy within South Africa.
6. What are some of the biggest challenges you face as an entrepreneur?
The challenges you may face are mostly financially, you don’t tend to make money instantly. It is something you have to work at and there are quite a number of outlying costs.
7. What advice would you give to young aspiring entrepreneurs?
Just go for it, people will tell you it’s hard, they will say get a job. But if you really want it keep at it and it will definitely pay off, that I can promise. There will never be a time, you work for something wholeheartedly and it fails you. Work Hard, work smart and NEVER give up.
8. What do you consider your biggest achievements as an Entrepreneur thus far?
Thus far the biggest achievement for me has been, me being named on the “Mail & Guardians Top 200 South African” List. To know such a respected publication recognised all my hard work was an amazing experience for me.
9. What do you enjoy most about running your own company?
The thing I enjoy the most about having my own business is I get to manage my own time, which is important for me, being a mom.
10. Three things you wish you knew when you started in the game?
- I wish I had known to trust people less, not everyone would like to see you succeed.
- Being your own boss is harder than it looks. I wish I had known that you had to work harder and longer than the people who work for you.
- Not everyone’s going to like you.
11. Lastly, how do you personally define success
Success is a very hard word to define independently. For me it’s been the fact that I have been able to pay my dreams off my bills.