Tag Archives: CEO

Darlene Menzies

Darlene Menzies, TDH/SMEasy

Darlene Menzies, TDH/SMEasy

Name: Darlene Menzies

Companies and Designation: The Development House (TDH) – Founder and Chairman, SMEasy Business Software Pty Ltd – Founder and CEO

What do you do every day? Team role – leader and innovator. I run a business that develops simple scalable software solutions that address gaps in the small business market. I enjoy the risk and challenge involved in taking an idea from concept to commercialisation – going from initial ideation and market research to product design, the development of a minimal viable product, market piloting to demonstrate early user traction and then raising venture capital to fund product commercialisation. In terms of my role in the team I am the ideas person, the team leader as well as the product evangelist. I love my job.

How did you get into the tech space? I started work as a bank teller and got involved in the bank’s IT division through my interest in helping test new IT systems that were being implemented in the bank at the time. I was moved to the regional IT division in KZN in the late eighties, there were no ladies in the division at the time. I worked in corporate IT for 15 years before starting my own software development business in 2004.

What was the best advice anyone ever gave you? If you don’t totally love what you’re doing stop doing it, immediately…then do everything you can to get started doing what you are passionate about. This one decision will change your whole life.

What advice would you given someone wanting to get into the tech sector? I encourage them to do it, it’s the future, the opportunities are endless. I tell them they have to be prepared to work hard, very hard. If they are starting a tech business I usually tell them to be prepared to make big sacrifices and take massive risks, the rewards down the road will far outweigh the sacrifices in the early years. Also that the key to success and growth is your team. If you focus on building your team, your team will build your business.

For people who ask me if I have any particular advice for women wanting to get in tech – I tell them to forget about gender and just do what they are gifted to do and passionate about, that is what will ensure their success. It’s not about gender, it’s about ability, timing, hard work and a bit of luck!

What motivates you to get out of bed every day? I totally LOVE what I do; I would do it even if I didn’t get paid. I wake up on a Saturday and Monday feeling equally excited about the day ahead.

Who do you want to be when you grow up? A mix of Melinda Gates, Hillary Clinton, Meryl Streep and Katy Perry… LOL. I think all these ladies are incredible in their own fields! Seriously, I want to be me but with loads more money; I would like to be able to make the kind of social and economic impact that someone like Melinda Gates is making. It’s a privilege to be able to change people’s lives.

LinkedIn: https://za.linkedin.com/in/darlenemenzies
Twitter: https://twitter.com/darlenemenzies / https://twitter.com/thedevhouse

Tabitha Bailey

Tabitha Bailey, Daptio & TWP

Tabitha Bailey, Daptio & TWP

Name: Tabitha Bailey

Designation: Founder and CEO

Company: Daptio and Together We Pass

What do you do every day? My days are way too busy, because for past year and a bit I have been running two companies with small teams – which means that I have to do pretty much everything myself.

This includes meetings with clients for Daptio, with training and support for people already using the system. Meeting new potential clients and doing software demos. General admin for Daptio and Together We Pass (TWP) – which always takes up more time than you think! Directing the marketing strategy and writing content for TWP – we are SEO and social media driven so it is hands on and takes a lot of time to do well.

I also have to keep up to date with our development plan for Daptio and TWP, and make sure the right tech is being worked on in terms of the biggest business need of the day. I also do bug testing – we’re constantly testing our technology to make sure it’s all working as it should be. Part of my day is also spent keeping an eye on finances, especially daily income but also expenses and matching to budgets. Then there’s strategy and management – on every level. From keeping track of the overall plan for the next few years, to what we need to achieve this term, to what we are doing this month, to what people need to be working on today. It’s intense!

How did you get into the tech space? Through business need. TWP was growing too fast (100% in 2012) and we could not scale at that pace without technology to assist us. I found a technology partner to help, and suddenly I was in ed tech! I now have two businesses that are technology-based, both in education.

What was the best advice anyone ever gave you? Build your network – you can’t do business without one.

What advice would you give someone wanting to get into the tech sector? If you do not have a tech background, be very careful who you choose for your technology partner.

What motivates you to get out of bed everyday? My son.

What do you want to be when you grow up? Permanently on holiday. Working hard enough for two lifetimes now – have to stop at some point.

Find me on:
Twitter: @tabbybailey @togetherwepass @daptio
Blog: http://togetherwepass.co.za/blog/
Google+: TabithaBailey

Barbs Mallinson

Barbs MallinsonName: Barbara Mallinson

Designation: Founder & CEO 

Company: Obami

What do you do every day? A mix of things… I catch up with my team, do some business development and product development, strategise, create content, dabble in marketing, travel, speak, network – whatever’s needed for that day – all fuelled by too many cups of coffee.

How did you get into the tech space? I started my own tech company because of a strong distaste for corporate life, coupled with a sense that the Internet was only going to get bigger and better.

What was the best advice anyone ever gave you? If it’s not scary, it’s not worth doing!

What advice would you give someone wanting to get into the tech sector? Go for it… be prepared to shed a bit of blood, sweat and tears – the more you do, the luckier you’ll get.

What motivates you to get out of bed every day? Knowing that Obami is doing some pretty cool stuff… at a pretty cool time in African history.

Who do you want to be when you grow up?  I’d like to be my same ol’ self, but hopefully wiser in many ways.

Find me on:
Twitter – @barbsmall
LinkedIn – za.linkedin.com/in/barbaramallinson
Obami – obami.com/members/barbs