ShapeShifter

Meet Margaret Hirsch; the inspirational founder of appliance retailer Hirsch’s

You can work for a boss and make a living – or you can work for yourself and earn a fortune, but you have to be passionate about what you do.

Margaret Hirsch, Hirsch’s

My boss did me the biggest favour in the world when he fired me.

Margaret Hirsch, Hirsch’s

If you help other people to get what they want; you’ll always get what you want.

Margaret Hirsch, Hirsch’s

Margaret Hirsch is a cofounder and the Chief Operations Officer of appliance and electronics retailer Hirsch’s.

Hirsch is a sought-after speaker and creator of a successful motivational programme.

She was born in Zimbabwe, but moved to South Africa when she was 10.

Her family was thrown into poverty when her father died two years later.

Undeterred, she started working at a hair salon to help her family make ends meet.

Hirsch’s started out as a tiny repair shop 37 years ago; today there are 18 branches and concept stores.

Hirsch does not have an office at any of the branches.

Instead she sits at a desk on the floor so she can help with customer complaints and queries.

She publicises the plight of young girls who do not attend school when they are menstruating, with the "Girls with Dignity Project".

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviewed Hirsch for his regular “ShapeShifter” feature.

Listen to the interview in the audio below (and/or scroll down for more quotes from it).

We’re growing all the time.

Margaret Hirsch, Hirsch’s

We teach domestic workers how to run small businesses.

Margaret Hirsch, Hirsch’s

We started by servicing air conditioners.

Margaret Hirsch, Hirsch’s

Start slowly… and invest back into the business.

Margaret Hirsch, Hirsch’s

South Africa is the land of wealth and opportunity… there is nobody here prepared to work that won’t make money…

Margaret Hirsch, Hirsch’s

We look after our staff incredibly well.

Margaret Hirsch, Hirsch’s

We sold our trucks to our drivers…

Margaret Hirsch, Hirsch’s

I’ve made huge mistakes… because I listened to other people…

Margaret Hirsch, Hirsch’s

We work a seven-day week… I take calls at midnight, whatever…

Margaret Hirsch, Hirsch’s

I’m passionately South African!

Margaret Hirsch, Hirsch’s

We’re teaching the youth how to have a decent life.

Margaret Hirsch, Hirsch’s

We were the first [to bring the microwave to South Africa].

Margaret Hirsch, Hirsch’s

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