An Entrepreneur creates opportunities not just for himself but more importantly for others. In Nepal, this is even more important as we have a high number of unemployed Nepalis and opportunities are limited to a privileged few.
There is an ongoing joke in Nepal, that if we produce a politician, we destroy 100 jobs, whereas if we create an entrepreneur, we create 100 jobs. On a serious note, this is why many youths should turn to entrepreneurship as the engine of their personal, professional and soulful growth. We need not look far to realize how entrepreneurship has transformed our neighbors, China and India. A responsible government would bet on producing and helping more entrepreneurs than on anything else.
Here are few ways Entrepreneurs will transform Nepal…
Entrepreneurs solve problems in Nepal
We hear of so many problems in Nepal. Listen to news, and you will hear problems left and right. Entrepreneurs view these problems as opportunities and solve problems for all of us to have a nicer life in Nepal. In the process of solving problems, they create jobs and positivism and efficiency in the economy. Today, many have become dependent on foreign aid and the government to solve our problems. Entrepreneurs don’t wait and will not allow others to solve problems. They grab the opportunity, try to solve it and find a sustainable way to do this (business). Imagine a future in which each Nepali is hungry for problems and jumps to solve each and every problem in our society and makes a business out of it. We could become a very different society.
Entrepreneurs create jobs that benefit low-income families in Nepal
As an entrepreneur, you may help a struggling Nepali family directly, lifting them from poverty simply by creating ‘jobs’. The employment you generate and the salary you pay , helps towards improving the local economy, i.e small shops, farmers, schools, groceries and local towns. You help the local eco-system by the wealth you generate for others. This in turn helps generate a positive cycle of employment. You help continue this positive cycle of growth even as a small entrepreneur.
Entrepreneurs creates platforms/ecosystems in Nepal
As an entrepreneur, you will be creating not just one small business but over the course of time build it into a platform, an eco-system so that others can build their own businesses around yours. Thamel became Thamel when businesses started to bloom, servicing around one Hotel, Kathmandu Guest house.
So you will be helping create opportunities for others too, by creating this as a by-product of building their ventures. As a result of an entrepreneur, an industry of like-minded entrepreneurs came into being. Do not under-estimate the power of entrepreneurship to change the world.
Entrepreneurs raise dignity of Nepalis
When we get the opportunity to work in our own country, utilizing materials and human power here and export them, not having to leave our place to work in far away lands, it makes us dignified. It raises our family’s self-esteem, our children’s self-esteem. Entrepreneurs create dignified jobs and dignified professionals as their employees. Entrepreneurship is not about exploiting people. It is about empowering people so that they help run their business better. Hari Bhakta Sharma has scaled his pharmaceuticals company – Deurali Janata – by successfully providing dignified employment and opportunity to work in a place which makes life-saving medicines at affordable prices for the poor.
Entrepreneurs remove the gap between rich and poor in Nepal
A strange statement? Well many confuse entrepreneurs with traditional traders, monopolistic business houses or even evil rich people. Till now in Nepal, the power and wealth has been restricted to a few traditional elites. They earn their wealth, thus power, not by being entrepreneurial on fair competition but by abusing their power, access, status and restricting other Nepalis wish to becoming an entrepreneur. They stifle innovation and growth and encourage practices that benefit just themselves. So they are not entrepreneurs. In-fact, when entrepreneurs come into the equation, they in-fact break monopolies and barriers created by these traditional power elites. The fact that entrepreneurs can come from any background, tribes, age, status is powerful way to transform society from status-quo to progress.
For economic equality and prosperity in Nepal, we need not more politicians or job seekers but more entrepreneurs who rise from obscurity, cutting across tribes, economic past, castes and age. In other words, that entrepreneur could be you. If we are looking for the profound changes we want to see here, help yourself become an Entrepreneur. Take the example of Rudra Pandey, the founder of D2Hawkeye. He comes from a simple humble background in remote Nepal, rose through sheer hard work and ambition, started and grew D2Hawkeye into a powerhouse. He grew the firm to a global healthcare analytics firm and helped put Nepal on the map of world-class companies. Many Nepalese have taken inspiration from him and are trying entrepreneurship in Nepal and outside in their own ways.
Entrepreneurs creates positive cultures
“Yes we can”- This is the feeling that prosperity brought by Entrepreneurship evokes. It improves the self-confidence of all Nepalis. With this positive attitude, it helps replace the current “blame-game” culture of “yestai ho”, “ke garne” attitude in which we are stuck and can no longer create a win-win situation in villages and towns across Nepal. It helps usher us towards a fair meritocratic culture in which every Nepali, irrespective of background, gains the attitude – ‘yes, I can meet my dreams.’
Positive culture in Nepal is essential if we want to create an economically equal, fair, accountable, responsible society. And as an entrepreneur, you will be helping us make this faster than any other professional. Prithivi Pande, current CEO of Nepal Investment Bank, was responsible for creating a a positive culture trend in the Banking sector. Many of the current heads of Financial institutions in Nepal have worked with him and followed his lead to be successful bankers themselves.
So how will YOU benefit as an entrepreneur in Nepal?
1) A dignified status
Nepal has changed. Now your peers, your followers and many Nepalis will regard an entrepreneur as a leader. And some will even think of you as a visionary. They will read about you, hear about you and follow your steps. You will be inspiring the next generation of Nepalis to become creative entrepreneurs and help create great entrepreneurial centers right here in Nepal like the Silicon Valley in the United States. Entrepreneurs like Anil Chitrakar, Karna Shakya, Ambika Shrestha, Min Bahadur Gurung are respected, admired and thanked for the opportunities they have created in Nepal.
2) A comfortable life
In Nepal, an entrepreneur’s life is much more comfortable as your ability to succeed is higher because there is less competition here. Once you are successful, you carry great leverage. As an entrepreneur, you can leverage your success to have access to more opportunities to work on a bigger level, may it be with the government or on bigger lucrative projects.
3) A satisfying life
The satisfaction of having helped many will be extremely gratifying for your soul. In Nepal, you can actually see your effects directly. Leading an honest life as an entrepreneur and providing for others – what a satisfying way to live here than in the already developed country where your impact may be minimal compared to here. How best to help others – by innovating a fishing industry, not just teaching how to fish, or worse just giving them fish.
4) Live your life
As an entrepreneur, you can live your life passionately, not your parent’s life, or your friend’s or your spouse’s, but yours. I believe this is one of the best ways to live where you decide on your path. In other words, you lead a passionate life. As an entrepreneur, I have enough time and energy to follow my different passions in life, to experiment on projects and to mentor others. It allows me to make time for myself and my family while finding ways to serve the society better.
by Prasanna Dhungel and Ujwal Thapa. This is a series of articles on Transforming Nepal through Entrepreneurship. Stay updated in this website for more articles.