The thing about entrepreneurship in creative and technical fields is that they allow a certain level of flexibility that enable one to venture out on their own rather easily, armed with a laptop, some time to burn and a clear head. That the creative industry is growing is a clear indication that it is solopreneur model is becoming a favorite work choice.
However as more people opt to go into business for themselves and especially so straight from tertiary institutions, there are elements that lack that can only be learnt from working in organizations that have solid processes, procedures and work flows used to deliver client projects. These missing links are project management and communication; components of doing real business that is are achilles’ heel of many individuals and firms seeking to build businesses or simply work in the information technology and creative vertical.
Having worked with both in-house and outsourced teams, I have come to realize importance of prior exposure to a work process. It is amazing that despite a myriad of available tools and technologies that would make communication and project management easier, many projects overshoot both budget and timeline due to a laissez-faire approach to these two critical components.
But why call out these two? My reasons are simple! If we want to build Kenya as a technology hub that both creates world class services and attracts outsourced projects that will make use of our growing skill sets in information technology and creative capability, we must be able to deliver on time, on budget and keep our clients in the loop.
Stories are not hard to come by of developers and creative’s who go missing after getting commissioned on a project with their down payments done , only to surface weeks later with nothing tangible to show for the time off the grid much to the chagrin of a client who is late on their deliverables and all they are getting are excuses.
The onus is on all players in the local tech and creative space to set high standards in service delivery, otherwise the enhanced connectivity that we have seen in over the past months will serve to ship out work to other markets where standards are set, met and surpassed rather than have the world trooping in to have their projects get the “Kenyan” touch.
Whether you are running an established firm or starting out as a techie or creative, seeking to carve your niche; put time, effort and research into building your delivery pipeline. Document it , constantly refine it and most importantly stick to it.
The industry as a whole will flourish at this simple self check.