BACKSTORY: Collin Molepe
We question Collin Molepe, CEO of Bryte Life
What’s your one top tip for doing a deal?
Make the deal work for all parties. If the deal doesn’t benefit everyone, its lifespan will be short.
What was your first job?
I was a clerk at one of the big banks.
How much was your first pay cheque, and how did you spend it?
If my memory serves me well, it was about R1,600. I gave almost two-thirds to my grandmother … may her soul rest in peace. She was overjoyed and that remains one of my most cherished memories.
What is the one thing you wish somebody had told you when you were starting out?
Don’t let others tell you what you can or cannot do. While you may learn from others’ experiences, your intuition is often the best guide.
If you could fix only one thing in SA, what would it be?
"If you are planning for a year, sow rice; if you are planning for a decade, plant trees; if you are planning for a lifetime, educate people." — Chinese proverb. I am passionate about both teaching and learning. I would want to focus on improving our education system and ensuring better access for all.
What’s the most interesting thing about you that people don’t know?
As a foodie, I absolutely love trying out new recipes and experimenting.
What is the one investment you wish you had made, or made earlier?
Save more money to fast-track my retirement.
What is the hardest life lesson you’ve learnt?
I have grown to appreciate the many challenges and layers of complexity that come with parenting. While I have had to concede that as a parent, I can’t control the outcome, I firmly believe in instilling strong values and teaching my children to differentiate between right and wrong.
What do you consider the most overrated virtue?
That only hard work pays. Yes, it is important, but a good attitude combined with constant improvement through learning could have a bigger role to play.
What is something you would go back and tell your younger self that would impress them?
Choose happiness over success.
Was there ever a point at which you wanted to trade it all in for a different career? And if so, what would that career be?
This may shock many who know me, but I think I would make a great bodyguard.
If you were President Cyril Ramaphosa, what would you change or do tomorrow?
Be more decisive and act swiftly.
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