Too busy to be in Business?


One of the earliest realizations once one is employed is that the pay Cheque is never enough. And even if it were,  one always wants more. The key question that arises for most people is “how can I get some more?” And better yet, “how should I do it while maintaining my 9-5 day job?”

Since i’m not an expert on the subject matter, I took to  the streets and asked a couple of people how they did this  themselves, and what they recommend others should do  to follow. But without going too far, my first stop, was my
own father, who was an engineer for 25 years in a corporation till he retired to work full time in business, but  throughout that time was still involved in what we call ‘side business’.

To start off with a little about his background, he graduated in the late 1970s, met my mum, a banker then, and started a family in 1979. My mum quit her job to look after the family, and the old man took to a 9-5 day job to look  for money. We all know the early 80s’ were politically unstable and people were running around all the time. There were a lot of financial hardships, as he too quickly realised that the pay Cheque  was never enough.

However, the biggest challenge came when the company he was working for unleashed a turnaround strategy which involved the workers not getting pay for 6months. The company too was not doing too well.

Without making this a biography about my father, the key point he stresses is, in such situations, one needs partnership. In his situation it was his wife, the partner, who implemented whatever they decided on while she stayed
home, and he went to work. It’s a certain form of leverage, he admits. In your situation, it could be a friend with the same ideas, but not with a 9-5 job. Forming a partnership is a very good starting point as it helps turn everyone’s weaknesses into strength.

The partnership that he formed enabled day to day manage-ment of all the ideas they put in place, and this is what an average 9-5 employee needs. Management! Over the years, they have ran a simple chicken farm( nearly everyone had chicken in the back yard back then), a paper bag making business, a shop in Kikuubo, which later grew into a distribution business which, to this date, is being run the same way. Of course there are many others that failed along the way. This only proves they too are human.

Even when you consider Warren Buffett, the greatest investor, he has been forming a series of partnerships throughout his life. He always had someone around him that did the day to day management from the time he ran coin operated pin ball machines in barbershops to date when he operates over 70

Partnership, although not the ultimate solution, is a great starting point for those who are looking for more.

Yusuf Mulinya
Edge Consult Ltd


  1. I really enjoyed the article. Partnership is the way to go. However my question is how do you manage a long distance partnership? For instance your “side business” is in the village while you work in town?


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