Entrepreneurship isn’t for everybody, but turning your passion into something you can make a profit from can definitely be rewarding. Doing something you love can motivate you to go the extra mile and if executed right, the profits should follow. Here are 5 inspirational women who’ve turned their passions into businesses and what we can learn from them.

Siba Mtongana

Siba Mtongana studied Food and Consumer Sciences after high school. Her love for creating tasty meals helped her secure the position of food editor at Drum Magazine, one of the biggest magazines in South Africa. Later, she started her own cooking show in 2013, Siba’s Table, which was an instant hit. Siba has turned her culinary passion into an empire, publishing her cookbook and becoming one of SA’s most esteemed celebrity chefs.

Nkhensani Nkosi

Nkhensani Nkosi began her career in TV, until she discovered another passion and talent that she had at the time - fashion. She started her fashion house, Stoned Cherrie, in the year 2000. This was a success from the time it launched because of its unique element of using design and clothing to commemorate South African history. Stoned Cherrie continued to grow and attract South Africans by bringing them closer to their roots.

Princess Nomzamo Madlala

Princess Nomzamo Madlala combined her love for travel with her love for sales. She secured her bag when she started Rose Pearl Travels, a company that makes people's travelling and events experiences easier. Even though she always knew she was a born entrepreneur, she dabbled in other things because of her circumstances, but soon realised that following her passion would be a lot more rewarding. She followed her heart and never looked back.

Miko Branch

Miko Branch’s love for maintaining her curly natural hair was the inspiration behind her hair care brand, Miss Jessie, which she named after her late grandmother. Her passion for hair care came mainly from wanting to keep her hair but struggling to find products that were good enough for her natural hair, until she and her late sister, Titi, finally found a formula that works. If it wasn’t for Miko’s understanding that failures and mistakes are a good way to learn, her hair care brand wouldn’t be the multi-million dollar brand that it is today.

Michelle Okafor

Sometimes starting out in a specific career can help you discover your passion. That’s what Michelle Okafor’s career as a travel agent did for her. Being in a position that allowed her to travel around the world is what introduced her to Nigerian fabrics, and that’s how Okafor African Designs was born. She instantly fell in love with these fabrics and has been using them to create stunning clothing pieces ever since.

One thing that’s really important to remember as an aspiring entrepreneur is that it won’t always be smooth sailing. You may stumble along the way but that’s the best way to learn and try again. Very few things are as satisfying as doing something you love daily, so there’s nothing wrong with dreaming big and working towards building a business out of your passion.

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