48-year-old Trudy Mackay Sekokotla left the corporate environment to leave her mark in the business field. She shares her business journey and her success tips to young people
Having been at the SABC for 15 years, handling the corporation’s special projects and events, Trudy knows a thing or two about identifying gaps to create memorable experiences for people. A business minded approach, mixed with the love for food and hosting made Trudy leave the SABC at its high after working on the 2010 FIFA World Cup to start her franchise business in the food industry. But it wasn’t long after realising that she wanted to have her own brand in the food industry that would enable her to make her own decisions and show her personality. She decided to specialise on a niche market where she only serves wings. And since she saw that many consumers have become health conscious she decided to take a deliciously healthy approach to her restaurant. It took her three years to research her concept as well as developing healthy flavours and salads for her grilled gourmet wing restaurant. She worked with renowned gourmet South African chef, Hayden Fortmann to work on the delectable and healthy recipes that customers have since enjoyed from July 2017 when the restaurant opened shop. What sets Have Wings, her restaurant, apart is that not only is it healthy but it aims to empower young people who are passionate about the food industry. Her son, Emmanuel Sekokotla, a big foodie himself, manages the restaurant and he adds that he’s learned so much about himself as a leader and as a business person since running the restaurant on a full-time basis.
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A woman of many caps, Trudy also runs a marketing and communications agency called Mackay Communications Solutions which has a clientele of blue-chip corporates. It was through her marketing background that she was able to promote her brand that has already caught some traditional and social media attention. She adds, “You have to spread your wings in the business field and try out different things that you are good at. I feel that I have been blessed with a great career, which laid a great foundation for instilling discipline in me to run a business.” About Have Wings, which also has mobile kitchens spread throughout food events in Johannesburg, she says that there have been requests for her to franchise the business. “Coming from a franchising experience, I’d rather partner up with people, support and train them because I know how hard it is to run a business, especially a franchise which is an expensive venture. I am working towards that and am willing to work with people who will understand that nothing comes easy and that you need to walk and talk your business. I will achieve a part of my success when I look back and see that I have contributed to the success of many young people. I am already mentoring two young people in the food industry.”
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When it comes to her success tips to young people she says, “The road to success is not easy. You need to learn from people you look up to and team up with like-minded people who are as hungry to achieve their goals. You also have to believe in yourself, put in the hours and be hands-on in fulfilling your dreams.”
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Contact them on: 011 482 1696