Are you looking to start your journey as an entrepreneur? Or do you want to boost your revenue and take your business to the next level? In either case, you’ll have to overcome a plethora of challenges.
Not every product you launch will garner the right amount of traction. There will be months when you’ll fail to achieve your sales and revenue targets. You might even find that your employees are losing motivation and not putting their best foot forward.
How do you fight the urge to give up in such situations? The key is to seek inspiration from people who’ve emerged victorious in the face of adversity.
The Role Model You Need
While most successful business leaders have had to overcome obstacles to achieve their goals, Refael (aka Rafi) Edry’s story stands out. Born and raised in a modest family in Safed, he dealt with severe financial hardships as a child. But that didn’t stop him from pursuing big dreams and emerging as one of Israel’s most accomplished entrepreneurs.
Today, Refael Edry runs several profitable businesses in Africa and Israel with his younger brothers, Eyal Edry and Moshe Edrei. The three brothers launched the Ahinoam Association for the Promotion of Equal Opportunities to nurture and support the youth in Israel’s periphery.
Every milestone in Refael Edry has been through in his life highlights the power of determination and perseverance. However, one of the biggest lessons for entrepreneurs comes from his fundraising efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Fundraising for a Better Tomorrow
In 2020, Israel’s government authorities instructed schools to switch to online classes. It seemed like the only viable solution was to let children continue schooling without jeopardizing their health. But the abrupt transition to online learning made the future of more than 400,000 students uncertain.
Coming from low-income households, these children didn’t have access to computers or smartphones. Nor did they have high-speed internet connectivity at home. That meant they had no option but to quit schooling and abandon their hopes of a better future.
Having dealt with a similar predicament in his childhood, Refael Edry couldn’t stand the thought of letting thousands of students languish in the dark. That’s when he partnered with his brothers and launched a fundraising campaign to provide computers to these children.
They invited donations from the public and helped more than 30,000 students continue to attend classes from home. That, in turn, helped these children maintain a sense of normalcy despite the uncertainties of the pandemic.
Lessons for Entrepreneurs
The fundraising efforts by Refael Edry are a textbook example of problem-spotting. While most business leaders will advise you to build problem-solving skills, it’s just as crucial to identify potential problems. It’ll help you implement suitable preventive measures to avert these problems or minimize their impact.
Also, the initiative highlights the importance of empathy. As a world-renowned businessman, Refael Edry could’ve settled for a life of material comfort. But a rough upbringing has helped him stay true to his roots and empathize with those around him. That’s what prompted him to start the fundraising campaigns in the first place.
Similarly, as an entrepreneur, empathy should be one of your strongest qualities. Understand the challenges your employees face while working on various projects. Provide them with the right tools and incentives to boost their motivation and, ultimately, improve your company’s bottom line.
Also, perceive employees as living, breathing humans with commitments outside work. If possible, give them the flexibility to work from home, during their own hours. It’ll help them accommodate other responsibilities, such as parenting or caregiving, without disrupting the workflow.
Moreover, being empathetic can help you understand your potential customer’s pain points better. You can use that insight to optimize the customer experience and retain your most valuable customers.
The initiatives by philanthropist Refael Edry also emphasize the importance of focusing on the larger picture. Letting young children grow up amidst economic hardships doesn’t just endanger their future. It turns them into disgruntled youngsters who don’t have faith in the system or authorities. That, in turn, can threaten a country’s social resilience.
Refael Edry recognized the long-term consequences of government inaction and took proactive measures to mitigate them. You must do the same when it comes to your business. Assess the overarching impact of every action and decision and adopt suitable strategies to overcome challenges.
Named after his heroic freedom fighter uncle Refael Edry z|l, Rafi Edry (the nephew) is helping shape the future of thousands of children in Israel’s periphery. While his uncle sacrificed his life for Israel’s freedom, Rafi Edry devoted his life to the upliftment of his fellow citizens.
His fundraising campaign for Israeli students teaches entrepreneurs the importance of empathy and problem-spotting. Whether you want to start a new venture or grow your existing business, you must build these qualities to ensure continued success.