Name: Kudzai Chaka
Industry: Personal Services
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Reason for starting: FindaKeeper was born from personal experience that I realized was a shared experience for many more. When I became pregnant with my daughter, a key issue was finding a nanny to help care for our child. Acquaintances made recommendations and I viewed store notice boards, but due to a lack of critical information about the candidates a lot of time was wasted interviewing candidates who were not suitable or were looking for different types of opportunities. I realized then what benefit there could be in professional profiles for both the domestic workers seeking employment and the prospective employers. Skills, experience, training, references, salary expectations and positions sought would all be available to view from the comfort of ones laptop.
How do you define success? Success has to be multi-faceted; there is no success if it’s not balanced across all aspects of my life. I am an entrepreneur, a wife, a mother, a sister, a daughter and a friend — and doing the best I can in all those roles is my vision for success. Success specifically For FindaKeeper would be to grow into a business that leaves a legacy beyond the years of its original founder. To become the first point of call for households looking for domestic assistance.
Biggest Success: Every day when I make the choice to push back self-doubt and move forward with driving my business forward is a victory. The result of those efforts is not always immediately apparent, but the biggest and most recent result of those efforts was signing a Premium Service client based internationally. It was incredible to realize that my business had not only been identified but also selected, and that I had successfully provided service to a client thousands of kilometers away. It was validation that there is indeed a need for the solutions offered, as well as an indication of the potential reach of the business. It encouraged me to think bigger and to continue to work steadily and consistently.
Related: Our Definitions of Success
What is your top challenge and how have you addressed it? My top challenge has been my mindset. Firstly, moving away from identifying myself as an employee in a corporate environment with a specific job description and identifying myself as a business owner. FindaKeeper could not be Plan B, I could not have one eye on the job boards and the other eye on the business. I stopped thinking about and looking for employment and became 100% committed to FindaKeeper, which is my Plan A through Z.
As a sole proprietor everything including product, client servicing, marketing and business development are my responsibility. Having a child who is under 1 year old means situations arise daily where I have to put family before business. Travel is restricted, meeting times are determined by the baby’s schedule as well as how fast I can allow the business to grow.
Who is your most important role model? My mother is a nurse and has had her own practice in Zimbabwe for over 20 years. For many years prior to her retirement from formal employment, she worked at the clinic during the day and worked the night shift at the hospital. As she grew her successful business she always remained a present parent in the home. She covered school books, attended swimming galas and mended our clothes. She is my role model because she found that seemingly illusive balance between pursuing her career, running a successful business and not having to sacrifice home life. She is the reason I know it’s possible to have it all.
Edited by The Story Exchang