It is a new week and today we draw our inspiration from Thato Mafale originating from Sebokeng, Vaal. Thato is an entrepreneur whom during the week gets busy with construction work and after work and weekends focuses on his clothing brand business called MalomeKomKyk.
I’m Thato Mafale born and raised in the Vaal Triangle, as a kid we lived at Sebokeng by the time I was in primary we moved to Vanderbijlpark and I completed my primary at laerskool Oospark, and I did my high school at General smuts high. I’m a resilient laid-back lad that always spreads good vibes but that can also be impatient. I’m impulsive with my decision making but also indecisive at the same time.
What were the challenges and great things about growing up?
I really didn’t have challenges growing up, my mother did the best she could so we can have the best life. The only challenge would be I was scared to ask her for money so that forced me to save at a young age and I guess that’s a challenge that turned into a great thing because saving is important especially in business.
Your career? What is it that you do? What inspired you to do what you do?
During the week I’m busy with construction weekends and after work is my business, my inspirations come from me trying to make it in life and live life the way I envisioned it in my mind and I guess that also drives me to keep dreaming big and keep chasing my dreams, I’m into branding currently I have my own clothing brand the brand name is Malomekomkyk. Malomekomkyk is a brand that started November 2016 inspired by the kasi (township) language hence Komkyk, and 2015 I became an uncle to a shining star (Naledi) that’s where the Malome comes from.
What do you like most about yourself and the work that you do?
What I like about myself is that I don’t believe in the word impossible, I always find the positive in the negatives, I’m the type of guy who finds solutions to every problem I face instead of finding a problem to every solution, and I would like to think I’m a genuine guy that has peoples best interest but I guess that’s not up to me to decide but the people around me lol. What I love most about the work that I do is meeting different kinds of people and touching people with the product it’s really crazy how happy people get after they get their merchandise and I love to see that.
What are some of the challenges which you’ve faced and how did you overcome them?
It’s basically hard for people to digest a new brand and in the beginning it was hard for me to push proper sales but because of the marketing strategy people started to see what we were about as it is hard for people to familiarize themselves with a new upcoming brand, thanks to the hashtag #KomKykFriday people started having the fear of missing out and more and more people wanted to see what the brand is about which later led to more orders from the public as they also wanted to be part of the movement.
What are some of your life highlights for you so far? What are you most proud of?
The highlights of my life is seeing how far I’ve come in life and where some of the decisions I took put me, I’m most proud of how the brand grew from just a cap to being one of the biggest brands in Vaal Triangle, and lastly one of the highlights was giving HHP his very own Komkyk t-shirt and him responding on twitter that he is happy to have gotten the t-shirt.
What, in your opinion, are the most important factors to keep in mind to make it in your career or life in general?
For me personally and it’s something that works for me is being positive and finding solutions to the problem at some point in life you need to be in your own space and re-evaluate your life to see how you can rectify where you went wrong because all that contributes to your growth, and surround yourself with people that help you grow and spread positive vibes, lastly chin up its given you going to face obstacles but block the noise focus on your own lane and keep it going eventually everything comes together.
Where would you like to see yourself in the next three years?
Having my own branding machines having my own equipment to make the t-shirts stop outsourcing and creating employment
If there was anything you could do differently, what would it be?
Taking more risks, Sometimes I overthink things but I think it’s because I’m trying to protect what I’ve built, also I would change how I market my brand I’m not saying the current plan is not working but I believe there’s different ways and all the different ways could all complement each other.
Are there any specific people or organisations that you look up to and draw inspiration from?
Not really to be honest I draw inspirations from my surroundings and my customers
Are there any inspiring projects which you’re involved in?
Yes, we planning on doing more positive things for the community giving back and uplifting those that are less advantaged so we going to have a drive but please follow our social media for the update.
Lastly, what advice would you give to others out there looking to follow in your footsteps?
That it’s possible, never give up not everyone is going to like what you doing and you have to accept that, believe in yourself and cloud your mind with positivity bounce back when you fail and try again until you find a way because, to be honest, there’s really no formula on how to do it, find what works for you and ride with it. We get so lost in people’s perception of “it’s impossible” that our dreams die instantly, So I encourage everyone who is working on their craft to have the “its possible” mindset, this helps you decide what you really want and it teaches you to say “no” to everything that isn’t that.
How can the public contact you?