June 13, 2024, Thursday
Nepal 1:37:26 pm

Nepal is fertile for hard workers; no need to go abroad for livelihood 

- Raj Karki

The Nepal Weekly
June 6, 2023

Raj Karki of Balkot in Bhaktapur district ran a school a decade ago. Having got years of experience in the education sector, he wanted to switch. Five years ago, he started a tailoring business under the name of ‘Shree Raj Collection Shirting and Suiting’.

His encouragement and confidence were fueled by his initial success in the business. He opened its branch under the name of ‘Suitmala’ in Bagbazaar two years ago with the aim of expanding the business. Suitmala has been a best choice for people from various walks of life including artists, journalists, leaders and businesspersons. The initial success of Suitmala in a short span of time has further encouraged him.

People from various professions including journalists, film artists and music video artists have been wearing clothes produced by Suitmala. Besides, he has added a feather in his cap. He has opened a boutique in Bagbazaar three months ago apart from Suitmala and Shree Raj Collection. Treasurer of the Federation of Nepal Cloth Merchant and Tailoring Association Clothing and Stitching Trade Federation and associated with the Nepal Cloth and Stitching Entrepreneur Association, he has been giving motivational speeches and providing training sessions on entrepreneurship. He is also associated with the Nepal Cloth Merchant and Tailoring Association. Here are some excerpts from a conversation between Karki and our representative Narendra Raule regarding his business journey and experiences.

The Nepal Weekly: How did you switch to this business from as a school owner?

Karki: People may not pursue a profession permanently. They take up a job as per the demand of time and situation. So, I got connected to this profession as per the changing time and situation. It has given me happiness. In the first place, I was a bit panicked when switching to tailoring from the education sector. But, I gradually got used to it. Now, around 30,000 people from 72 districts who have taken up this job know me. This has added morale and courage on me.

TNW: You have taken up completely new job for you. What sorts of challenges have you faced?

I think, one is born with challenges ahead in life. Living a life is more challenging. I did not feel any big challenge when doing business, a big or small. In my opinion, a person who takes their job as a challenge can never do anything good in life.

Jobs should be taken as responsibilities rather than challenges. Work should be taken as most enjoyable part and way of our life. Doing any job and work whole heartedly and dedicatedly does not make one feel any difficulties and challenges in the way.

How do you see future in shirting and suiting business?

I always engage in making my future bright instead of seeking my future in any job. No one can predict the future. Neither can they write it. One can make their future bright by pursuing their journey of life while being bright, energetic, productive, and hard working in the present.

And, I want to stress that youths like us should think about the ways to make the present effective instead of thinking and worrying about our future, and then continue with their passion, dedication and creativity. Only then, our future becomes bright.

What challenges and problems are there in shirting and suiting business?

People have been increasingly attracted to wearing suits more than in the past. Consumers would rarely wear suits in the past. But at present, suits have been main choice for youths in particular.

This is a good sign itself. But, young consumers are not much aware about suits. As a result, we are unable to make them 100 percent happy. In addition, many companies making available in the market ready-made suits at relatively reasonable prices has added to the problem. 

The state has not paid its heed to it, it seems. Not offering discounts on revenues on the import of raw materials causes the productions being dearly. As a result, buying power of consumers goes down, and they get attracted to ready-made suits that are made available at relatively reasonable prices. So, a few people are attracted to suits.

Likewise, the trend of skilled Nepali manpower going for foreign job opportunities and hiring Indian human resources to produce suits has made the matter worse. It involves difficulties in hiring Indian workforce as they are hard to find during the peak season for the profession. There is a need for the state to retain Nepali skilled workforce home by creating job opportunities within the country.

In your experience, how customers can be attracted?

In earlier time, consumers would pay focus on prices of products. There is a proverb in our society; best and cheap. But, this not only customers want. We have come up with a different way to attract customers.

Any customers visiting us are more than only customers. They are like our family members. We welcome and honor them as a member of our family. We prepare and provide them clothes of their choice and design in time. We are much committed to it.

What sorts of message you want to spread to the young generation as an entrepreneur?

There is a need for all youths to be an entrepreneur. There are certain things to follow to become an entrepreneur. Youths should be aware about things like skills, creativity, proper management of time, continuity, being aware about capacity within oneself, love for country and collective work.

There is a need for youths to get attracted to entrepreneurship rather than politics. I want to urge all youths to involve in the industrial sector. Work pays off.

We only depend on foreign countries. We become afraid of investing in our home country. We lack courage to do work. We only blame others. We do not respect each other. And then we complain that development activities do not take place in the society and the country. Instead, youths should move ahead and do something good by exploring their efficacy. The thing that what I do instead of what others do for us holds meaning.

I reached many places in the course of giving motivational speeches and providing entrepreneurship training sessions. I have found most youths being frustrated. I have been filling such youths with energy, hopes, and self confidences. And, again I want to emphasize that lets all youths do something good home. Let’s do it from today.