Getting Started

Getting Started
November 1, 2018 Stephen Mugabe
Dr. Mugabe shares some key steps he encountered when first starting his business by Stephen.Mugabe – Kampala, Uganda, Africa – #000245

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Getting Started

By Stephen.Mugabe

This text is in Extreme Rough draft and will be edited in the near future.

Hello, my name is Stephen Mugabe, I’m the founder and CEO of Code Clinic, a dental practice in Kampala, for the last five years. Now, before I started Code Clinic I was working as a dental associate for another practice in Kampala. God started something up in me about starting a business. I had been trying to go to study, do a post-grad so that I can continue in academics, but there was this hunger to get out and practice on my own, because as dentists we have different philosophies of practice, and I wanted to express myself. And so, I talked to friends, I talked to family, they confirmed that you know, I’m a good clinician so I should get out and you know, offer this clinical skill to people. I didn’t have resources outside, but I was saying God now how am I going to start this? Dental practices are quite capital intensive. Where do I start? I prayed about it, and I asked a few friends and family. They said “We will support you, we will give you long time loans, start this, get out and do it because we believe that you are actually very good at this.” I remember at our church we have a camp every beginning of the year, we sit down and envision what we want to do. So I boldly went up and said “By the end of this year, I’m going to start a practice.” I didn’t know where the resources were going to come from but I had sat down, started making a business plan, and yeah I started getting contacts in the dental industry. At that time I was serving on the dental association board and I was meeting suppliers that were saying “You know what? If you want to start your own thing, we could give you some materials and then you will pay for them later.” I was like this is nice, this is how things start. Well, I’ll take this step of faith, I’m going to resign my job, and start this practice. It was scary to resign from my job because it was my livelihood, but I did anyway. I gave my boss a one month notice, and left. I did not start for the next four months because my equipment was delayed, remodeling the place was taking long, I had payed my rent for six months and I hadn’t started working, so it was really tough and it was making me start doubting whether this was what God has told me to do. But the thing is, I knew it was from him. So, I said I will do it. If resigning didn’t kill me, then this business won’t kill me. So I stayed in there, it was a rough start, really rough because I was so naive about business and thats the thing with us. When we get a word of faith, we you know, I think it’s good to spend more time to hear from The Word how we are to execute this because we have the Holy Spirit who knows all things. If we consulted and didn’t go with our own knowledge, then maybe we’d do things better because God want’s us to prosper more than we want to prosper. And so, it’s not that he wants us to go out and suffer, but if we consulted all the time, if we made him our partner, then we wouldn’t have to go through those you know, painful times. So I slowly learned and kept… one thing I do is really, I pray in tongues because I know the Holy Spirit is my source and so I kept praying, and because I was always worried, I wasn’t really hearing much from God. I had to learn to stop fearing. Prophecies were still coming to me that, you know, God wants you to prosper in your business. That was very confirming, you know, when someone reaffirms that you know, what you’re doing, they don’t know you but they are reaffirming you that continue doing what you’re doing, it’s from God. I quickly learned one thing, that fear was holding me back, fear. Fear of failure, fear of not paying my debt obligations, fear of fear was holding me back. And I’ve had many encounters. God has been faithful through from the beginning because one thing I learned, was sit down and be thankful. So I had a journal to keep, saying “What am I thankful for?” And when I went back, I would see sometimes, you know, there was a friend who had given me just money, for my upkeep. There was another friend who called me to his office and said, here’s a contract for our company, you can start providing dental services, you bill us at the end of the month. I had things to be thankful for. So I was like, God is here, so why am I over focusing on what is going wrong? I mean, we may be behind, but we are growing, and the business was growing. We were in debt, but the debt was reducing. And there were some miraculous happenings. I mean, one time I had a bank payment to make, it was the fifteenth of the month, I didn’t know where the money was coming from, and that evening a client walks in, pays upfront the exact money I needed for her children’s treatment, upfront for like four months. To me, that was God, as in, who, who else? It’s God. As in someone comes in, pays up front for their children’s treatment, and man, that encouraged me, I stopped fearing. I said you know what? Things may come my way, but I’m going to go through this. Everyday is a miracle to me, because there are days when machines break down, I don’t know what to do, I decided I’m not going to keep fearing. If I have to tell people that sorry no service, that’s okay. If I have to get someone to give me something to use that day, thats okay. In fact, I have this thing of if I’m not available, I mean, I will be timing those people that I’m seeing to the other dentists, so they will come back to me. Your attitude really matters too, if you’re hearing from God then do something about it, I mean don’t keep fearing. We walk by faith and not by sight. The difference between us and other business owners who don’t know God, that’s why they are stressed and you know, burning up with ulcers and high blood pressure. We can’t go to that same direction, we have to know that we have the help of the Holy Spirit, and he is the difference we need. He will show us the resources that we need to turn our businesses around. I am not where I want to be, but I have left where I used to be, and I will have more stories for you in the near future. Thank You.


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