Interview with Allen Mukwenha
Interview With Allen Mukwenha

"The greater the difficulty, the more glory in surmounting it. Skillful pilots gain their reputation from storms and tempests.” Epictetus.

Allen Mukwenha 
Regional Business Development Manager
Johannesburg Area, South Africa

EMBA Batch 2020 

Please tell us something about yourself and your family.

I am a Zimbabwean living in Malawi. My wife and I have 3 children. Growing up, I used to work for my father who had a second hand furniture shop. My duties included advertising the shop through posters and newspaper adverts. That resulted in what has become a lifelong love for marketing. I have worked across Southern Africa including Zimbabwe, Zambia, Botswana, South Africa, Mozambique and Malawi.

I am a keen golfer. I also enjoy motorsports and boxing.

Can you tell us something about your work?. How has the pandemic impacted your industry?

I recently started a business that offers business analytics to NGOs and manufacturers. The pandemic made us scale back field activities, and a lot of projects that we had planned have been pushed back.

What do you think is in store for your industry, any new trends that are emerging and shaping the business?

Data is everything. In the past, information about penetration, distribution, pricing and market share was difficult to obtain for most manufacturers. This problem was compounded for firms working in Africa because over 80% of retail happens in informal markets. Now, using technology, we are able to precisely measure market activities allowing for precision in planning.

What was your reason for pursuing higher studies and why did you choose Athena Global Education?

I felt that I needed to study further so as to contribute more to my business. The MBA program in Business Analytics at Athena meets my career needs as our company has shifted from a general advertising agency to a business analytics consultancy.

I chose Athena because of its great value and its payment per module system. I was also attracted to the fact that Athena’s partner in this program, Universidad Católica de Murcia(UCAM) is a respected and top ranking  university.

How do you manage Work-Life-Study balance?

This is something I keep working on, because my work is unpredictable and I can be called to the field any time. I am trying to follow a set routine in which I wake up at 4 am, meditate, exercise and study before going to work. On days when I religiously follow this routine, I find I am more energetic and motivated. I only started this 3 months ago, so hopefully it’s something that I will stick to.

Any socio-economic change that you think is affecting all the businesses?

Malawi, being a country that depends on imports and foreign aid, movements in the exchange rate have a disproportionately huge effect on businesses. The currency has been steadily losing value, something that is of concern to the whole economy.

We would like to know 1 thing that helps you manage all the work, study and family. What is the thing that keeps you going ?

Building a financial foundation for my family keeps me going. I want to spend time with my children and  have the independence to travel the world with my wife.

As far as business is concerned, what/who has inspired you the most with respect to your career/profession?

I draw inspiration mainly from 3 people: Abraham Lincoln for his work ethic, Kobe Bryant for his competitiveness and Tiger Woods for his mental strength, focus and lifelong dedication.

One advice that you cherish the most and would like to share with our readers.

“The greater the difficulty, the more glory in surmounting it. Skillful pilots gain their reputation from storms and tempests.” Epictetus

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