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Kanya King
Founder of the MOBO Awardsand CEO of MOBO Organisation
Kanya  King

Projects like London Fusion can help you aim for success

Authors: Kanya King Kanya King

24 January 2013

Inspire[ONE], the first in a series of events organised by London Fusion, brought together creative and digital SMEs, entrepreneurs, academics and partner organisations to listen, mingle and inspire creativity.

Kanya King MBE, founder of the MOBO Awards and CEO of MOBO Organisation, reflects on an inspiring morning with London Fusion. You can follow her on Twitter at @KanyaKing.

When we launched our first MOBO Awards in 1996, I didn’t anticipate it would become the world recognised brand it is today. In that debut show, we acknowledged artists such as The Fugees, Tupac, Goldie, Courtney Pine, Lionel Richie and Jazzy B. Tony Blair, then Leader of the Opposition, was also present. Now we’ve expanded with exciting projects like MOBO UnSung, an annual MOBO Tour, we're recognised in 200 countries and have become an important voice promoting urban music across Europe.

I’m very proud of the role we've played in elevating urban music and propelling it to the forefront of the UK’s music scene. Most people know MOBO for the awards, but we continue to work with artists, partners and brands that support and inspire fresh talent throughout the year. Like the Olympics, we've created a positive legacy that will continue to generate passion in urban music for generations.  

But any kind of success is a lot of hard work, particularly when you’re starting out with your own business. As lots of SMEs know, it’s tough at the moment. A lot of us struggle when trying to handle all the different challenges - my business plan certainly was not always perfect! That’s why projects like London Fusion are so valuable. Support when you first start will help you build your business, create more jobs and support continuing growth.

Having connections and networks are an important element in business but an often overlooked aspect is the support and inspiration they can provide. When starting my business, I would have loved a network like London Fusion. Just having a group of talented individuals to talk to during the tough times would have given me that boost and affirmation you sometimes need to overcome the various hurdles with determination.

What advice would I give budding creative and digital SMEs?  Over the years, I’ve learnt that obstacles are opportunities in disguise, so take those obstacles (or 'mistakes' even) and channel the tough lessons into something productive. Continuing to adapt is a must – it’s adapt or die – and this can often lead to opportunities for growth. And like most entrepreneurs, I have lots of ideas. However, I try to focus on the true determinants of success.  In business there generally are one or two activities which are absolutely crucial - the key is to fully focus on these and not get too distracted.

My greatest inspiration has been my mother. I will always remember her words of wisdom, ‘With the right advisers, plans will succeed’. A fitting summary for this fantastic project.

The London Creative & Digital Fusion project is part financed by the European Regional Development Fund Programme 2007 to 2013 through the Greater London Authority.