Chef Naledi – Love for Empowerment Inspired My Entrepreneurial Journey
Chef Naledi, as she is better known is a South African Chef of high repute who has set the bar high with everything she does as an entrepreneur, chef and cooking instructor.
Her words; “Cooking is my passion and I have turned this passion into an empowerment drive as well as a business. Although I am a chef, I chose not to concentrate on cooking for clients only – I am also a cooking instructor and I offer Business to Business services which include consultation and training,” she said. Naledi said she offers private chef services to individuals and also runs the cooking classes to a social group to empower those who wish to improve their kitchen skills.
“In addition to this, I offer business to business consultation and training. With this, I do consultation at different establishments such as guest houses, lodges and restaurants. Most of these places cannot afford to hire a qualified chef. I therefore train them,” she shared.
She said one thing that is vital on her trainings is Health and Hygiene in the kitchen, saying lack of it can ruin a business completely.
“My entrepreneurial journey didn’t start with Chef Naledi brand. However, what inspired me to start the Chef Naledi brand was the love for empowerment. When my helper started working for us, she had no clue on how to cook any meals. I usually train my helpers but not to the extent that I trained this specific one,” she mentioned. Chef Naledi said she realized that most women are always busy and hardly have time to cook healthy meals for their families, or even themselves and in most cases it is helpers who do all the domestic work.
“I believe by enrolling the maid for culinary lessons, one is killing two birds with one stone – having someone to do the cooking but also empowering that individual,” she added. She further said she wants to expand her brand in Botswana and would love to train more establishments. Chef Naledi has identified the gap that needs to be closed especially in small Guest houses and lodges.
Toona is currently a brand ambassador for Lamb and Mutton SA and she also develops recipes for them. Toona who is a mother of two said her responsibilities as brand ambassador include doing live demos at expos and also in different shows. “I have featured on the Home Channel for Lamb and Mutton Demos at the Fire and Feast Festival and also Soweto Kota Festival as well as doing demo for Standard Bank Women’s Bank celebrations in Free States.”
“Entrepreneurship isn’t a way journey. It needs a lot of patience and perseverance. Learn to listen to advises, value your clients and their feedback (positive and negative) and always be on a journey to empower yourself,” she added.
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