In today’s fast changing business environment, small businesses across all sectors continue to face challenges in reaching their goals. Business owners need to step up their game in order to stay relevant and ahead of their competitors - and that’s where Debra Mwodza’s Quest Support Solutions comes in.
LoA chatted to founder Debra Mwodza this month to find out more….
What does your company do?
With the growing need for new strategies and effective management, we at Quest Support Solutions, offer a wide range of business support solutions to individuals and small to medium sized entities that cannot justify or afford full time assistants of their own. Our service offering include but is not limited to Secretarial and Office Support Services , Administration Services , Bookkeeping services, Database Maintenance, Word Processing, HR Management and Personal Organizing Tasks. We have a passion to support our clients in utilizing their time and resources more efficiently and effectively by providing the support they need - when they need it. Our services are provided mostly remotely via telephone, e-mail, fax, and various internet based tools. Advanced tech in the form of uncapped ADSL, cloud computing, cloud data storage and instant chat aides our work processes and helps us and our customers stay in touch and share files in safe and secure ways. Distance is therefore not a barrier as we can serve businesses situated anywhere in the world.
"We have a passion to support our clients in utilizing their time and resources more efficiently and effectively by providing the support they need - when they need it."
What inspired you to start your company?
Naturally as we grow up we are normally urged to ‘get an education, get a job’ and thereafter rise through the ranks in the corporate world. We are made to believe that success and happiness equates to a secure professional career. Having worked in corporate for over 15 years in different industries and various positions, I never got the fulfillment I yearned for. I felt that I was not living up to my full potential and that there was a way I could use the skills and knowledge I had acquired both professionally and personally to impact real change. A few months prior to my transition from ‘employee to entrepreneur’, I had been constantly frustrated at work and I had also been looking for better job prospects to no avail. As the saying goes, “if you can’t find your perfect job, create it”. It took one bad day at work and sound advice from a colleague and friend, for me to take the leap and start Quest Support Solutions. That was the push I ever needed. I knew that this was it, the dream and purpose I was questing for. From that day, I have never looked back.
Why should anyone use your service or product?
We offer small business owners convenient and cost-effective support solutions. Using us will cost less than hiring an employee. Here is how;
• Business owners do not pay us for overtime; leave pay, incentives or benefits as we only get paid for hours worked.
• We eliminate the hassles and costs of recruitment, training and hiring processes.
• We work from our own location utilizing our own resources. Our clients therefore do not incur additional costs of office space, equipment, software, stationery, supplies and maintenance.
We are a team of trained, qualified and experienced consultants who are experts in our respective fields. We go beyond service provision by providing advice, recommendations and guidance for our clients to achieve significantly better results in their businesses. We help by creating effective work spaces for our clients to excel in.
Our service offering is flexible. One can choose from a once-off, retainer, per hour, per project or contract basis. . Whether onsite or offsite, personal or business needs, we can assist. We offer tailor-made packages to suit everyone’s budget and unique requirements. Overall, we help small business owners save time, money and (most importantly) sanity by allowing them to offload various aspects of their daily business operational tasks so that they can focus on core business strategy. By delegating the work to us, they can take comfort in knowing that they have reliable and professional support.
"Distance is not a barrier as we can serve businesses situated anywhere in the world."
Tell us a little about your team
At the moment, it’s me and my business partner, Tumi, though we have support from friends and associates. I handle the accounting side of things and Tumi assists clients with all admin related tasks. Rose, a Finance student with UNISA is on call and ready to assist us when we get busy.
Share a little about your entrepreneurial journey. And, do you come from an entrepreneurial background?
Having started operations less than a year ago, I am fairly new in business. It’s not plain sailing but absolutely worth it. I have encountered challenges, setbacks, disappointments, and roadblocks along the way BUT nonetheless it is very fulfilling. I have relentless determination to see ‘this baby’ expand to greater heights. I am fortunate to have had the opportunity to work for a large corporate which helped me understand the significance of proper structures and systems in business. I am also grateful because I have a great support system. My friends and family are always encouraging me when it gets tough. I take each day at a time, I regard my mistakes as a learning curve and I stay positive regardless. Yes, I do come from an entrepreneurial family, so I guess that contributed in a way. My mother is a serial entrepreneur who worked for herself most of her life. My father was employed but he always used to do his own ‘jobs’ on weekends and now after his retirement, he and my mom have joined hands in running a small home based business, earning themselves a steady flow of income. My father is the greatest mentor I ever had and he instilled in me from an early age a fighting spirit. He always told me that education unlocks doors and that as a woman I can do anything (or even more) a man can do.
"My aspiration is to grow the Quest Support Solutions brand to become the most preferred supplier of business support services in South Africa and beyond the borders."
What are your future plans and aspirations for your company?
We plan to expand our services range to become a one-stop shop for start-ups and small businesses. I also plan to continuously further my skills and knowledge to ensure that I offer my clients, distinguished, improved, innovative and superior solutions. My aspiration is to grow the Quest Support Solutions brand to become the most preferred supplier of business support services in South Africa and beyond the borders. Growing up as an African girl child, I faced numerous challenges. I hope one day Quest Support Solutions will grow to become an entity that can empower disadvantaged young women across the continent, by providing them with meaningful employment opportunities, and assist them to study without limits, pursue their dreams, and ultimately live fulfilled lives.
What gives you the most satisfaction being an entrepreneur?
Celebrating our ‘small’ victories as the business grows each day. The fact that I created something from nothing and owning and being in control of my destiny.
What's the biggest piece of advice you can give to other women looking to start-up?
Start where you are and with what you have. Do lots of research about your target market, their specific needs and your competitors. Never take shortcuts. Surround yourself with people that challenge you, encourage you and hold you accountable. Believe in yourself and invest in your personal and professional development. It’s vital to your success.
Contact or follow Quest Support Solutions
Why LoA loves it….
Many startups battle time management and finding the right resources to help them to grow, yet need both if they are to fulfill their potential. Identifying this challenge and seeing it as a business opportunity led entrepreneur Debra Mwodza to create a business that offered a solution. Today, her company practically helps small business owners to delegate time consuming and non profit making tasks to her team of experts, which in turn allows them to save time, money and sanity. It’s a win-win for both. --- Melanie Hawken, founder and editor-in-chief of Lionesses of Africa