The business world today has become a place full of challenges, competitiveness, risks and fear. As entrepreneurs, one must identify, value and seize any opportunity. Running a business in these challenging times is no bed of roses, but facing many thorns along the way. National gold award winner in the extra-large category at the Sri [...]

Business Times

Running a business is no bed of roses, but coming across many thorns on the way, a successful entrepreneur’s words

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The business world today has become a place full of challenges, competitiveness, risks and fear. As entrepreneurs, one must identify, value and seize any opportunity. Running a business in these challenging times is no bed of roses, but facing many thorns along the way.

Mr. Nalin Pathikirikorale.

National gold award winner in the extra-large category at the Sri Lanka Entrepreneur of the Year 2019 and Chairman of Lanka Spice (Pvt) Ltd, Nalin Pathikirikorale spoke to the Business Times this week on his journey of success in winning the award.

Encouraging aspiring entrepreneurs Mr. Pathikirikorale said, “An entrepreneur should be aware that to get there, one has to challenge oneself. Challenges never seem to end and when one accepts a challenge, you are motivated to reach your goals. Always do work that you care about. Running a business is no bed of roses, you will come across many thorns on the way, but if you work in what you truly believe in, you will no doubt succeed. Be prepared to take risks, as we can never be too sure on what we will encounter on the way. Always believe in yourself. Whichever way you look at things, remember that you are always right (even if you are not). Always have a vision of what you want to achieve. Visions are serious blue prints of your future. Always overcome your fears. Being afraid and carrying out something will never work. Hence, meet fear head on and learn to have a strong attitude about things you believe in.” These are the basics, but very true facts that can assist aspiring entrepreneurs to create a niche order to reach their goals,” he emphasised.

He also mentioned, in today’s trend, sons and daughters of millionaires in business get everything on a golden platter. They are not aware of how their parents strived to acquire such businesses and bring them to what they are at present. “If you want your son or daughter to succeed you in your business, train them from scratch, right from the bottom,” stressed Mr. Pathikirikorale adding, what is lacking among the generation that is coming forth to take businesses ahead, is ‘zero experience’, lack of zest to succeed and the fear to take new challenges that come before them. They tend to rest on the laurels of their parents. It is a known fact that more than often a business fails after the third generation.

Mr. Pathikirikorale stated that many established and successful companies have worked hard, dedicated and committed and if they didn’t they would not have reached this far. It depends a lot on the leadership. Entrepreneurs should naturally think big. They need to listen to consumers keeping abreast of the latest developments in their field. In this industrial age, an entrepreneur needs to move with the technological advancement in their field.

Speaking of his journey, Mr. Pathikirikorale said, “I take up all challenges thrown at me. I started life as a Medical Rep, but after a while I found it repetitive and boring. I wanted to get into an area which would take me forward in life. Exports were one of them in the days when the country was short of foreign exchange. Not only was it exciting, it was also rewarding. I joined Consolidated Exports, then the most prestigious state owned export house. With that experience I was ready to go international, not that there were vacancies. I applied to all corners of the world, seeking employment. I was lucky to get into one of the leading commodity houses in London. Never looked back since then. From the UK, I moved to Singapore from where I migrated to Australia as a Business Migrant. I lived there for 10 years before moving back to Sri Lanka. While abroad I set up Lanka Spice (Pvt) Ltd in 1984. The brand ‘Mc Currie’ was one of my finds just by chance. I was looking for a name that was universal and acceptable to all, both in the East and West and ‘Mc Currie’ was coined up.”

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