It was a tough journey says winner of the‘most influential woman’award

21Sep 2019
By Guardian Reporter
MOSHI
The Guardian
It was a tough journey says winner of the‘most influential woman’award

THE winner of the Most Influential Woman in Business and Government in East Africa’s Tourism and Leisure Sector 2018/2019 Zainab Ansell has described her recognition as a result of years of dedication and perseverance in a male-dominated sector.

THE winner of the Most Influential Woman in Business and Government in East Africa’s Tourism and Leisure Sector 2018/2019 Zainab Ansell.

Speaking to The Guardian here yesterday, Ansell who is founder and Chief Executive Officer of the Moshi-based Zara Tours said the win is a result of going the extra mile in her work—the habit she coached her team to embrace.

“I ran very fast where others walked,” she said. Organized by CEO Global, Africa’s Most Influential Women in Business and Government Awards (MIW) has been a flagship recognition platform since 2001 with the aim of uplifting and celebrating women’s achievements and contributions to the economic sector in which they operate, their communities and the region’s economic development.

Ansell who is former employee of the then Air Tanzania Corporation quit her job as sales officer and started her own company in 1987 which today operates the largest ground tourist handling company for Mount Kilimanjaro climbing expeditions, and runs a chain of tourist hotels and lodges.

But she is not only a shrewd businesswoman, she a generous philanthropist and a humanitarian who engages in both local and international corporate social responsibility campaigns.

“In 2009 through Zara Charity, I initiated a global movement of sustainable tourism and giving back

The native of Hedaru in Kilimanjaro region encouraged other Tanzanians wishing to venture into entrepreneurship not to wait to start with “enough” capital because even her empire Zara Tours which also trades as Zara Tanzania Adventures started little capital.

“My biggest capital was business idea and passion; if you have that, the business will flourish,” she said, adding:

“But even if you have the so called ‘enough’ capital yet lack clear business plan and perseverance, that money will varnish in no time.”

In June this year, the company was also named the overall winner of the inaugural tourism awards by the Tanzania National Parks (Tanapa).

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