Overcoming business challenges during a pandemic

Written by Noni Sophe

MOST entrepreneurs battled to find alternative solutions to keep their business operations going when the COVID-19 pandemic hit South Africans in March.


Seeing fellow entrepreneurs close down their businesses due to financial losses made it more difficult for some to remain hopeful. 


For others, however, this crisis presented a test to adjust accordingly to keep their doors open.  
Among them was James Matshubeng, managing director of Matoto Technologies, an ICT Consultancy firm. 


“One of the difficult adjustments the company had to make was having to let go of some of the employees as their roles became absolute due to clients working remotely and at home.” 


To save the company and maintain the relationship with existing clients, Matshubeng had to make more adjustments including on service offerings and emphasising value for money by utilizing software and applications clients were and are already paying for. This was after clients were uneasy with some wanting to cancel contracts with them. 

Matoto Technologies is a hundred per cent black-owned Information and Communications Technology solutions provider company. The company prides itself on providing comprehensive products and solutions covering multiple solutions to a wide spectrum of end-users, including blue-chip corporations, small businesses, government departments and commercial sectors. The company has been operating for thirteen years.


“Although the pandemic brought unfavourable circumstances at a very short space of time, for entrepreneurs, it was a wake-up call because it realigned us with the core foundations of entrepreneurship.” said Matshubeng. 


He said the pandemic forced him and his team to transform how they did business.
“I think such competencies allowed some entrepreneurs to not only survive but thrive under the pandemic,” said Matshubeng.  


“The biggest challenge the pandemic presented was fewer human interactions and because of that entrepreneurs were forced to rethink the impact the new normal would have on its business operations, employees and clients. Tough decisions had to be made and time was not on anyone’s side. We understood this and although we were under pressure, we believe we did the best as we could for the business.”


Matshubeng has advised entrepreneurs to see this period as a test, find innovative ways that will sustain the business and work as a team.

For more information and to arrange an interview, please contact Noni Sophe at 078 233 9509 or at  nonisophe@gmail.com

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