Selling in Swahili – a Language Lesson

From the Swahili of Kenya: Mgeni siku mbili; siku ya tatu mpe jembe. In English, “Treat your guest as a guest for two days; on the third day give him a hoe.”

I received this from a friend of mine who has moved to South Africa. Dave and I played basketball together on a tour in Malaga, Spain. He has since decided to work with a missions organization. This amazing, gutsy guy and his wife, Sherie are working with people who have MUCH less than us. He sends an email each month and gives a language lesson.

I love that phrase and it’s meaning; Mgini siku mbili; siku ya tatu mpe jembe.

If you were hanging around me the next few days, you’d hear me mumbling in Swahili and see people looking at me funny. The first place will be with my kids. Next will be on the basketball court at lunchtime.

See that phrase has significant meaning for anyone in business – whether you sell or are an accountant or manage others, you can be as friendly as you want, but inevitably you have to pull your own weight.

Are you? Do you need to print this phrase out and put it up where you can see it?

Who’s counting on you to handle the hoe? Family, co-workers, prospects and more. Great workers give joy to those around them. Great workers are treasured by all. Are you one? Have fun, but remember…

Mgeni siku mbili; siku ya tatu mpe jembe.

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