2022 was an exciting year in many ways. The most notable thing was that as the year progressed the pandemic situation faded away. There indeed was a significant restoration of normalcy with mask mandates falling away. Economically it has been a rollercoaster as is typical in Zimbabwe. We can spend months doing a rundown of the economic developments that characterised 2022. When a year is done, it is prudent to take stock of it. You have to take note of lessons from the experiences you went through. Today I am sharing with you my notable business lessons from 2022.

The Importance Of Signed Agreements

During the latter part of 2022, we published an article titled, Why you should insist on signed agreements. In that article, I shared a personal story of how someone now owes me more than US$1200. That person still owes me that money. It is now over 9 months and this all happened because I lent him money and did not insist on a signed agreement. He has been in hiding all these months. If you have not read the article I urge you to; in it, I talked about some valuable things everyone should know. Anyways, this was my biggest business lesson from 2022. I really dropped the ball on that one. Never ever enter into any business arrangement without a signed agreement on paper. Any form of agreement you enter with anyone should, at the very least, involve an affidavit.

Never Completely Rule Out A Business Idea Because People Say It is Not Worth It

This is a lesson I mainly drew from observations I made throughout 2022. As a business and finance researcher, I am naturally quite curious and observant. I had so many conversations with wide-ranging people in 2022. I spoke to a fruit vendor who by the end of 2022 had bought a car. A car he bought from selling bananas and pineapples on a street corner somewhere in Masvingo central business district (CBD). I saw clothing boutiques that emerged and soared within short periods of time. I had the opportunity to know about a notable business person in Masvingo whose clothing manufacturing business is doing wonders.

I can go on and on, but I noted two patterns. One, many people are thriving with businesses often deemed unprofitable. Two, many businesses are thriving in domains or markets deemed flooded. The bottom line is, to take time to do your homework regarding a business idea that comes to mind. Never just rule out a business idea based on often uninformed opinions. With the right cards and the right strategy, any business idea can thrive.

Making Money Online Is Increasingly Becoming A Thing In Zimbabwe

Ever since 2019, I have been speaking a lot about the importance of being online. I have primarily focused on the business side, but it does apply to even individuals. Judging from what I saw and what you probably saw, people are making money online. Many businesses are generating leads and realizing lots of revenue from their online activity. Did you even notice how big brands in Zimbabwe are now seriously active online? I was thinking about it the other day when I noticed the intense online campaign Bakers Inn is doing. The amount of content generated by Zimbabwean businesses online keeps growing. How about online content creators in Zimbabwe? Did you see how their number surged in 2022?

I even wrote an article titled The Growing Trend of Online Skits, Podcasts, Short Dramas, Films, and More in Zimbabwe: A Business Idea. Check it out to see how you can also make money online. I will not go into the vast opportunities to freelance online that now exist for Zimbabweans. These are trends you should now ride on. You can make online severe in Zimbabwe; it is now a reality. Personally, I have always appreciated this dynamic, but I learnt in 2022 that I have barely scratched the surface.

Human Nature Is Getting Grossly Vile

An appreciation of this dynamic is going to protect you moving forward. I did speak about how someone went into hiding with my money. I also saw many accounts of people getting duped in business partnerships in 2022. Many times I even saw businesses duping consumers. Just yesterday, I spoke to a commuter operator. He said some key vehicle parts are now exclusively available as cheap versions. He even said that some notable vehicle parts brands (I will not mention names here) are selling those versions. From a business standpoint, such businesses are doing so to push repeat purchases.

They know if you buy those versions, they get worn out or malfunction sooner. He mentioned a specific vehicle part that you can almost buy every month if you get those cheap substandard versions. Such business malpractices are now rampant in Zimbabwe. Though that is a lesson on its own I want to emphasise another key issue. Human nature has gotten grossly vile in Zimbabwe. I observed it in 2022 and I also learnt the hard way. It is essential that you be diligent these days in your dealings with anyone, business or otherwise. That way you will quickly notice red flags and protect yourself from harm or hurt. Guard yourself with all diligence!

You can benefit a lot from these lessons. In fact, most of you can even relate to these lessons personally. This should also serve as a call for you to evaluate your 2022. Come up with your own list of business lessons from 2022. You can do it for any facet of your life, e.g. social, academic, and work, amongst others. You will never grow and achieve greater things if you do not learn from your experiences. Any experience you go through, good or bad, carries invaluable lessons. Draw lessons from 2022 and catapult yourself into 2023 prepared.