Sometimes, we’re fortunate enough to meet someone who inspires us… Someone who reminds us of the boundless ability and capacity harnessed inside these bodies we inhabit if we put our minds to it. Peter Nawa is such a one.
Born and bred in Lusaka, Zambia Peter is the fourth of 4 boys and 2 girls. He is a qualified accountant (ACCA), has a degree in Development Studies from the University of Zambia, a Masters in Globalisation, Business and Development from the University of Sussex, he writes a blog (Diary of a Frustrated Brotha), is a published author and is developing an online business. He has achieved all this before the age of 30 and in the same 24 hours a day that is allocated to everyone. I asked him what his secret is and he told me he steers clear of kryptonite and adds a little Energizer battery acid to his morning cup of coffee. Ok, ok. That’s a lie. He said he is lucky but you know what ‘they’ say, “Fortune favours the brave”. Peter works hard and he is fearless. To quote him, “I am not afraid to fail. That is a good thing”. He also added, in jest, that he likes money. That is always a good motivator though, isn’t it?
Peter comes from a family of entrepreneurs. His father owns a bottle store and different relatives run schools, kiosks, salons and grocery stores. So the entrepreneurial force is strong in this one. As a child, he sold ice blocks made from Mazoe. For those of you who do not know what ice block is, let me enlighten you. Once upon a time, in a land called Zambia, in a time before Macs Cool and Freezit there was ice block. It was made by getting any kind of juice (Mazoe is legendary though), pouring it into small plastic bags and popping them into the freezer to, well, freeze. When they were frozen and you were having one, you would first pummel it against a wall or on the ground to make it slushy and then you would proceed to indulge in the cooling, life giving goodness of the ice block. Good times…Those were the days…
Anyway, back to the young Peter…An entrepreneurial spirit and mind were nurtured in him from a young age and so that is where his passion lies. “I am fascinated by how people start and grow businesses. At the moment, I am exploring the entrepreneurship route to see where it leads.” This leads me to his book.
On the 21st of January 2016, HIRED-FIND THE JOB, KEEP THE JOB AND QUIT THE JOB, Peter Nawa’s first book was published. It was inspired by the challenges he watched his peers face in gaining employment after they had graduated. Fortunately he had not faced the same challenges, having worked for four organisations before writing his book, and so he decided to share his experiences in the job market with hopes that they would be helpful. The book is self-published and took two years to complete. Peter tells me he opted to ‘do it himself’ because most publishers in Zambia gravitate towards educational material and also because it takes quite a while to explore that avenue. Truly commendable that he set out to do something and didn’t allow the prevailing circumstances to discourage him. Also, if you want something done, you have to do it yourself…That’s what ‘they’ say anyway. I like ‘them’. They say some really good things.
When he isn’t writing, Peter is mostly an indoors guy but he loves to read (not surprising as he is an author). His favourite authors include John Grisham, Chimamanda Ngozi-Adiche and Khalid Hossieni. He also likes to travel. The most memorable/interesting place he has been is Paris, France. He tells me it is like everything he used to read in the French books while trying to learn French. Perfect. He mostly travels with friends but isn’t afraid to travel alone, like when he visited Lake Malawi solo for a week. Sometimes, he takes his beautiful smile-lovely eyes-65% introvert/35% outgoing special someone with. I paraphrase but yeah, his words. An avid supporter of lawn tennis, his favourite players include Serena Williams and Rafael Nadal. Looks like I have the perfect tour guide to take me around when I finally make my way to Roland Garros.
One can only imagine what the future holds for a dedicated, hardworking (and playing) individual such as Peter Nawa but there is no doubt that with such attributes, the next 29 years of his life must be marked for greatness. Salut.