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Zimbabweans abroad shun fellow countrymen's businesses

08 Jan 2022 at 06:03hrs | Views
Zimbabweans in the United Kingdom shun businesses of their countrymen there.

Why do Zimbabweans always trust everybody, but their own?

Someone asked me this question again.

You can't believe in diversity and not appreciate that individuals are different and unique.

Our nationality is just one category of who we are.

But, the motivations and intentions that influence our decisions, behaviours and attitudes are not only as a result of our nationality.

Surprisingly when in trouble Zimbabweans run to fellow countrymen and women for help.

However, when it comes to supporting each other in business, they abandon their countrymen.

Where the Zimbabwean is in many instances the underdog, in terms of economic status and access to opportunities, one does wish they would be more camaraderie.

By preferring each other so that we would have a healthy quantity of Zimbabwean owned businesses in diverse sectors that are not in survivalist mode instead of the risk averse gate-keeping that says, "I would rather use the service providers that I have found being used because if they mess up, it would really not rub off on me. After all, my white predecessor used the same. So that must be the best and only choice."

The other side of the coin, is that if a Black African gives you a break, trip all over yourself to give the most superior service so as to shame the stereotype that expects the worst.

Jonathan Manuwa of Huddersfield United Kingdom shared this,

"Why don't black people support black businesses? To expand on that, why don't black businesses support other black businesses?

I have noticed this trend.

People claim that they will support businesses and will help out and purchase items, but when time comes- they are nowhere to be found.

Black people do a lot of talking and little action.

This trend of not supporting one another is why many do not succeed.

I am not saying hire every black person you meet or purchase from every black person you meet, but why not support those that actually have talent and potential? Or how about mentor someone?"

Commenting on the same topic Noah Mandeya of Luton said: "I have always been very observant and I catch everything.

"It is very interesting and intriguing to watch the dynamics of the Zimbabwean community. I have come to the conclusion that majority of the people are all talk, especially on the internet. You can use the internet as a guise to act like you follow a certain path and then turn right back around and not follow through on your words."

He said he has reached certain conclusions.

"I am always thinking, planning, theorizing, and I came to the conclusion that some things are just clear cut. We don't like ourselves.

"We don't trust ourselves enough to support one another."

Comrade Augustus Matiza of Luton quipped in saying helps his competitors with resources when they reach out.

"I like to compete with the best. I want other people to succeed like me. I am on my path to greatness and whoever is around me, I want them to have the same chance as me.

"So I don't know why some Zimbabweans sleep at night after ditching their kinsman's business and then borrow money from the same."

Contrary to what our fellow Zimbabweans say, Abu Tahir a Pakistani friend had a different view.

He said his friends are Pakistani and all are into business. Tahir said he passes along all the knowledge he has acquired.

"I tell them what worked for me and what didn't and I say why. Some have chosen to take all the information and use it, others have chosen to ignore (which is fine)."

The Zimbabweans abroad have adopted a selfish attitude where they do not want to hear about their own.

If they open their mouths they will be scandalising their own.

Most Zimbabweans trust other nationals and they do this with malice.

Being Zimbabwean among fellow countrymen abroad is not a guarantee that someone will help.

In the defence of the fellow Zimbabweans who shun others Peter Matereke said: "It is not reasonable to expect people to help sell your business when it is not their area of expertise.

"This will mean that people will have two jobs - to focus on their own expertise and to look for opportunities for you. We will have potential African clients who will never give business to other Zimbabwean people even if they have the authority."

He continues: "Make peace with it. What do you gain by being angry with them? Now management gets retrenched too. They might be in the same boat as you, sooner than they know. You would expect that if you are in similar areas, you would partner or throw bones to each other. Not always so. We also have a selfish gene."

Matereke said instead of wasting energy being pissed off at other African people that are not helping, it is important for one to direct his or her focus on communicating with potential clients so that they know what you do.

"They may not use your services immediately, but continue making your brand top of mind.  If other Zimbabwean people refer or recommend or partner with you, that is a bonus.  I appreciate that people are juggling many balls so I have stopped having expectations."

He said he expends his energies on what he can do for himself.

Maria Makani said she got her rude awakening years ago when she realised that not everyone was motivated by similar values.

"Some of us don't put much stock in the Zimbabwean race being better today than yesterday.

"They believe that their success protects them from the ridicule, patronisation, contempt and stereotypes that are metered out to the rest of us because of our race. They are solely mistaken," she said.

"But to focus on them is a waste of energy. Just do what you can do. One day at a time. There are many Zimbabwean people who are their brothers and sisters' keepers. Have gratitude for them."

Hassan Nyangoni, a businessman in Luton UK, said he always helps out others when he gets a good resource.

"I don't feel the need to be stingy. I don't have competition, because I am my own competition, that is why I willingly help others," said Nyangoni.

Sad is when a black person gives advice and it isn't heeded.

However, when that person turns right around he or she takes the same advice from a non-black person and pays thousands for the information.

Zimbabweans take each other for granted.

Sometimes a black person offers a great service, but the potential black customer turns right around and gives it to a person who is non-black.

The service can be equal, but a large percentage of the time, people will choose the non-black person.

Maybe it is because we were heavily colonised and we still have some self- actualisation issues.

People are used to getting things free (the hookup) and are not appreciative.

The hookup is what probably is deterring people from supporting/purchasing from their community.

People want to get things for free or heavily discounted.

Next time you try to get a hookup, ask yourself "Would I walk into a supermarket and get a loaf of bread free.

It is so easy for our people to say keep change in a restaurant, but negotiate for a discount from a green grocer or vendor.  Do I walk in a clothes shop and negotiate a price?

The mentality we have is warped.

We can do everything in our power to under pay a struggling tuck-shop owner, but pay tips in big stores. It seems like people want freebies from new and small businesses.

A name does not always constitute quality. A nationality does not always constitute quality.

Misheck Mthuthu, a Zimbabwean in Leeds, said it is sad that people who have quality services don't get business.

"Most of them say ‘people were always calling me when I was offering my services for free, now that I charge, they are nowhere to be found. Or when they are around, they always want for free, discounted, or try to find a way around paying.' I hope one day people change and learn to support and engage," he said.

He added that with support and engagement, comes confidence.

"With confidence comes empowerment and finally with empowerment comes success."

Matilda Mandawu of Peterborough confirmed.

She said even Zimbabwean lawyers are not spared as people do not want to pay them.

"In most cases Zimbabweans call you for advice and will never pay a single penny. If the things don't go right they bad mouth you. Zimbabweans abroad have caused grief for their own people," she said.

Source - The Herald
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