- October 27, 2020
Every business owner wants to be a better entrepreneur. However, the answer may not be in finding ways to run your business but in digging into what really matters: your experiences.
We live in the age of globalisation. Technology continues to improve exponentially, resulting in greater connections between people around the world. Letters have been exchanged for phones, which were overtaken by mobile phones and even within mobile phones there are continuous updates and changes. Transport is getting faster, more accessible and more comfortable. The updates for mobile phones, laptops and other tablets also make it possible to easily stay in touch with international contacts, regardless of time differences or distance.
All these factors create an intercultural mix, where cultures and customs come together and intertwine. The world is becoming a village.
Like any other phenomenon, globalization has both supporters and opposers. Opposers see it as an attack on their own culture, customs and values. They want to preserve their individuality without having to open up to others. But globalization has many advantages.
For starters, it is good for your self-development to interact with people of different origins. You will gain new insights into numerous customs and traditions and learn about life in different societies. Multicultural experiences can make you a better person and therefore, a better entrepreneur. Just think of all the musical styles from different corners of the world influencing each other. Or the worldwide spread of rice, burgers, pasta or noodles. Besides, globalisation provides inspiration that drives successful ideas.
Case Study: Mama Rocks, gourmet burgers, African style
A good example is found in Kilimani, Nairobi, where two Kenyan-Nigerian sisters raised in London run a successful burger joint known as Mama Rocks. Living in the UK, Samantha and Natalie Mwedekeli saw gourmet burgers quickly increasing in popularity. In addition, they saw no African restaurants that reflected urban youth culture during their travels. An idea was born and they returned to Kenya to start their own burger restaurant infused with African flavours. Their menu reflects a fusion of cultures and a celebration of Africa through food.
They used their experiences from the various countries they had lived in, travelled to, and originated from to become better entrepreneurs. The sisters also let the continent inspire them. Africa’s wealth of cultures and cuisine associated with specific regions form the base of most of their concept.
The menu includes burgers representing different parts of Africa such as the Mango Masai Mama for East Africa, the Desmond Flaming Tutu and Down & Durban burgers for South Africa, the Souq It To Me from North Africa and the Nollywood Suya Saga which represents West Africa. In addition, there is the Djubalicious, a Pan-African burger, the Ushago, especially for Kenya, and they even offer a burger inspired by Mexico. Each of these has its own personality, based on the culture of origin.
The most popular of them all, is the Mango Masai Mama, because it is inspired by Kenya. And because of the mango of course!
The Mama Rocks owners also adopted more products from all over the world. They offer Harissa and Guava chicken wings, plantain (known as Alloco in Ivory Coast or Dodo in Nigeria), gourmet ice creams and frozen yoghurt in various original flavours and they are planning to serve hot beverages with an African twist.
As Mama Rocks is a brand born in Kenya from various cultures, the two entrepreneurs are thinking about expanding to other African countries and to the West, where the African brand will be able to compete with Western brands.
Apart from the food, they encourage everyone to explore and celebrate African culture. Mama Rocks amplifies this by offering local, artistic talent a platform. For example, Kenyan designers make their uniforms. Furthermore, they want to organise events where people can showcase their talents, express themselves. These events will bring together different cultures through fashion, art and music events. And burgers.
Mama Rocks is a great example of how a simple insight (African food can be funky and modern) can turn into a successful business. The founders mined their own cultural experiences for ideas and inspiration- something we can all do. Too many entrepreneurs ignore their instincts and hop onto whatever is trending at the time, but passion adds a lot to a startup’s potential success. Without passion, the wind can be taken out of your sails long before you launch.
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