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Khanyi Mbau | South Africa | Never Settle!!

I was raised by a single parent and my grand mother in Soweto, Mofolo Village. I was raised in a family that celebrated arts. I was destined to play a role in the arts and entertainment industry. I landed my first television role at the age of 8, on a popular children's program called Gallooby (CCV), popularly known as SABC 1 today. Thereafter, at the age of 12, I was on another TV show called Sasko Sam 'you're a star' a children's fitness show. With the demand of school I then had to focus on my education. In 2004 I landed another a role on the popular drama series called Soul City as Katlego - a popular Soweto girl. Moving forward, I later had the opportunity to play in one of the most epic role re: my career. Playing the troubled villain, Doobsie on Muvhango. With my personal life once again on the forefront of entertainment headlines I was labelled the tabloid queen - which served as the beginning of my darkest days. Facing reality, I gave birth to a beautiful and wonderful little girl - Cannes (pronounced as Khan) in 2006. Surviving abuse, and the stigma I had to bear - from controversial statements made by the media.I went on to write a book as a source of healing and reflecting called "Bitch Please I'm Khanyi Mbau" (2011). Since then the sky had been the limit. I have gone on to achieve many great things via television etc . In 2016, I also landed a radio show on Metro FM as the host and working alongside entertainers like Somizi Mhlongo and Ntombi Ngcobo. The show premiered nationally on July 18, 2016 for a year until it came to an end in the reshuffle.

What were the biggest initial hurdles to building your business and how did you overcome them?

My personal life in the media overshadowed my business ventures for years. I had to take a step back and reflect.

What books are you currently reading? And your recommendation for entrepreneurs to read?

I’m almost finished with James Comey’s ‘A Higher Loyalty’. I absolutely recommend it for entrepreneurs. It touches on the ethics of leadership which I think everyone should just be aware of.

Did you ever deal with contention from your family and friends concerning your entrepreneurial pursuits?

How did you handle it? What would you do differently in hindsight?

In the beginning my dreams, goals and direction wasn't something many thought was a successful path for me to pursue, but today I am a living testimony. I’m able to distance myself spiritually from the negativity and just focus on my goals.

What would you say was the single most influential factor in your business success?

Honesty. I learnt to be honest with myself when times were tough and that has always allowed me to reflect on how I have come out stronger and wiser.

What do you know today that you wish you would have known when you first got started as an entrepreneur?

Never settle. I’m at a stage where I know what I bring to the table and trust me, I am not afraid to eat alone.

What advice would you give to an upcoming entrepreneur locally and internationally?

A simple famous line, “closed mouths don’t get fed”.


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