1. Can you please tell us more about your business?
A. Hot Head Media provides public relations and event management services to corporates that are dissatisfied with their lack of presence in the media. We are a small yet dynamic public relations consultancy that equally fares amongst the world’s largest companies. The size of our company allows us to offer a professional hands-on service to our clients any day of the week, 24 hours a day.
2. When, how and why did you start your business?
A. I registered Hot Head Media in 2012 while I am was still employed. I started looking for clients to establish the business while I was still fully employed. I knew it would be too risky to leave my comfy job while the company was still in its infancy stage, so I opted to juggle the two until I had saved enough money to sustain me for 8 months. I left full-time employment in 2014 and I have never looked back.
3. What is your role in the business?
A. I am the Managing Director, and due to the deliberate size of the company, I handle the day-to-day running of the business which also includes new business development.
4. Where did you study and what did you study?
A. I am a qualified Journalist. I studied at Tshwane University of Technology (when I was there it was called Technikon Pretoria) and I have a B-Tech degree in Journalism, specialising in Media Production.
5. How did you finance your business?
A. My business has always and continues to be self-funded. When I started off, I was funding it from my savings, now it is self-sufficient.
6. Describe your average workday, if such a thing exists.
A. No day is the same, other days I dedicate to looking for new business, others I spend on compliance and others on client relations. An added bonus is due to the nature of my business, I can work from anywhere in the world.
7. How do you balance your home life and your work life?
A. As an entrepreneur we live off the notion that if you slack off and don’t work, that time off equals money out of your pocket. As true as that sounds, I am also a firm believer that you have to strike a balance, it is important to take time out to recharge, a well-rested you is good for business. As such, unless there is a client crisis, I make it a point that I take Fridays off every week. Other times, I get on a flight and visit my family in East London and work from there for a week or two – killing two birds with one stone.
8. What drives you and inspires you?
A. I am driven by three things, the freedom to work my own hours, choose the clients I work with and the ability to provide for my family.
9. Where and when do you have your best ideas?
A. I have gotten some of my best ideas while home in East London. It might be due to being so close to my roots.
10. Where and how do you market/advertise your business for sales leads?
A. My business is registered on most online databases so thanks to SEO it appears on searches for PR and Events services. I also have a website and we are registered on the Central Supplier Database. However, a bulk of our work is through referrals. It is important to deliver and conduct yourself professionally and past clients will always call you back for repeat business and/or refer you.
11. What is next for your business?
A. I am looking at introducing new services to enhance our business offering so we can meet our 2021 objectives.
12. What advice would you give to female entrepreneurs hoping to start their own business?
A. If you are currently employed, make sure you have savings to sustain you for at least 6 months to a year before leaving full-time employment. Pay attention to small details as those will determine if you succeed or fail. Running your own business is not easy especially as a female, be prepared to make sacrifices, you will win some and lose some. Not everyone is going to believe in you but do not let that deter you from pursuing your dream of starting your own business. Keep moving forward and learn from your mistakes. You got this!
A by-product of the Richard Branson Centre of Entrepreneurship and with 19 years-experience in the media industry under her belt, it was inevitable that the founder and sole owner of Hot Head Media Nomphelo “Lelo” Ndzimela would start her own public relations company.
Born and raised in East London (Eastern Cape), Nomphelo is a qualified Journalist with a B- Tech Degree from Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) – formerly known as Technikon Pretoria. She is also a qualified Teacher with a TEFL certificate (Teaching English as a Foreign Language/ Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) from TEFLINK, which is based in Ireland.
She cut her teeth in the industry as a Junior writer for TUT’s community newspaper Rekord West News (Rekord Wes Nuus) – she wrote articles (and took photographs) for the publication in both English and Afrikaans which she took as a subject from as early as primary school until and including tertiary. In 2004 she interned at The Sowetan newspaper covering the General News beat, which included crime as well as feature stories and obituaries.
In the same year, she left The Sowetan to intern at Now Media – a trade and travel specialist company as a Junior Journalist. Her eyes were opened to the wonderful world of Travel and Tourism, expanding her already dynamic portfolio to include writing about the fascinating world of Trade. She worked on five specialist publications in the International Transport and Travel fields, which were published both online and print. These included: Freight & Trading Weekly, Cargo Info Africa, Travel News Weekly, Southern African Tourism Update, and Travel News Now.
- Lelo Ndzimela
- Managing Director
- Cell: 083 5396 575
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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