Adapted to the needs of people and businesses from micro to international.
Development in sub-Saharan Africa lags that of many other regions of the world. Despite frequently rich natural endowments, majorities of the populations of many of these countries lack decent employment and live in multi-generational conditions of functional illiteracy, informal economy or subsistence farming. The World Bank estimates that if current trends don’t change, 9 out of 10 people living in extreme poverty throughout the world in 2030 will be sub-Saharan Africans.
Pathway to Development proposes to confront and reverse this condition through stimulation of entrepreneurship with favorable access to capital, and through the development of effective leadership in business, non-governmental organizations and government agencies.
We propose to create a ladder with business prizes permitting people to improve their economic condition from wherever they find themselves. The rungs of the ladder begin at the level of personal development.
Then access to capital becomes more favorable.
Entrepreneurship begins with micro-business, then develops strategies to grow businesses that last, and
certifies companies to compete effectively in global markets. The ladder provides government and not-for-profit leaders the competencies they need to effectively achieve the results their organizations want and to create the conditions where entrepreneurship and economic development can flourish.
Many individuals and families will emerge from extreme poverty and become self-reliant by beginning or improving their micro-businesses. Some will become literate in their maternal and national languages in the process. Many of these will increase food production. Many others will emerge from the urban informal street economy. All will learn that they can save money regularly.
Some business leaders will choose to grow beyond the micro level, employ others, form capital and reap entrepreneurial profit. This is the primary engine of national economic development.
A subset of these leaders will choose to become competitive on the global level.
We assert that development must begin at the level of the individual.
Women and men in multi-generational poverty need to read and think differently.
Business and government agency leaders need to develop systems thinking and rapid results orientation.
Both kinds of leaders need to master and adapt the strategic principles that have transformed other firms and economies.
We adapt to sub-Saharan African cultural realities the power of personal and professional development. We teach true, proven principles and mentor leaders in their successful application.
Access to capital is the bête noire of sub-Saharan economic development. We tackle the problem by personal and leadership development of people, sharing risk and ownership in growing businesses, a loan-guarantee fund, implementing credit bureaus where none exist, and a clear and constant focus on assisting business leaders to develop to the point where they no longer need our mentoring or help gaining access to capital.
We propose a progression of business prizes, adapted to Congolese economic reality, beginning at the micro-business level.
Master of Business in the Streets (MBS) for individuals Pathway Prize for organizations and individuals ISO and Lean Production Certification for organizations.
Master of Business in the Streets (MBS)
At the micro-business level we use the methodology of Interweave Solutions. Neighborhood groups support each other in moving from poverty to prosperity. Micro-entrepreneurs learn to think in a simple system that leads to business success, strengthened families and improved communities. The MBS business system is summarized in 6 Ps: Plan, Product, Price, Promotion, Process and Paperwork. In as little as 3 months, micro-business owners can receive their Master of Business in the Streets (MBS) certification. When necessary, micro-business leaders learn to read in their maternal and national languages at the same time that they learn to operate their business.
Pathway Prize for Strategic Leadership
For leaders who want to grow businesses that employ others, form capital and last, we teach and mentor Strategic Leadership. Personal development expands to encompass leadership strategies and tactics. Leaders develop a comprehensive strategic plan based on a distilled application of systems thinking, simply called Pathway. The strategic plan identifies all relevant stakeholders of the business and their needs — their legitimate expectations of the results that the business should produce. Based on a deep understanding of the needs, leaders declare the business’s purpose, its strategy, the key people (or organizations) that need to commit to the purpose and strategy and then become partners in the processes that produce financial, market, product, social and other results. Then the leaders design the macro system that will produce the results, highlighting its key system levers.
After creating the strategic plan, leaders deploy their organization to create a business plan. Tactics and budgets Quality Human Capital Development Feedback measures, accountability, modification.
The company will go through 2 mentored annual cycles of planning and execution. After demonstrating that the business executes its plan and makes necessary modifications, it will be certified by receiving the Pathway Prize for Strategic Leadership.
ISO Certification or Shingo prize for Lean production Businesses and other organizations that wish to compete at international levels of excellence will seek ISO certification, indicating that the businesses master quality management systems. Achieving the Pathway Prize will accomplish the majority of the requirements ISO will impose. Businesses that wish to implement lean production principles and develop world-class value chains can be mentored toward winning the Shingo Prize.
The principles in the Pathway Prize for Strategic Leadership and ISO certification apply to not-for profit and public sector organization leaders as well as to entrepreneurs and other business leaders. Any organization that exists to accomplish definable results will benefit from the learning, discipline and mentoring of these two certifications.
Government leadership is essential to achieving the macroeconomic development of which entrepreneurship is the engine. In addition to developing strategic leadership skills for government agency leaders and facilitating their agencies' certification in management systems, the Pathway to Development will create reliable economic databases and credit unions that both business and government leaders can use to make informed decisions in their efforts to create wealth and respond to the expectations of the national population.
3 entrepreneurs from the US and Africa, with 80+ years combined experience in creating and operating successful businesses, have developed a simple but comprehensive system to develop leaders for business, government and NGOs in Africa. Each of the entrepreneurs also has extensive teaching/ training/ mentoring/ coaching experience in several countries.
The system, Pathway to Development, erects a ladder that people can climb, rung by rung, from illiterate unemployment to leading companies with ISO or lean certification.
Profits from the businesses created and grown will perennially fund Pathway to Development after a year, ultimately fostering the creation of thousands of businesses and tens of thousands of jobs, and investor dividends.
We eagerly seek people and capital to implement the vision. Please read the attached overview and let me know when we can meet to discuss it.