Quick-fire Q&A with Mark Uria

Mark Uria is CEO of Smart Media, visual merchandising experts and in-store innovators, and director at InfoSlips Connect, a software-as-a-service company focusing on delivering transactional documentation through various channels including email, the Web, mobile, and print. He is passionate about his work and feels there is nothing more fulfilling than being part of a team with similar interests. Having been involved in several start-ups, Mark is an entrepreneur at heart.

Describe your leadership style.
To allow members of the team to take initiative and own their roles, without micromanaging.

Your top tip to beat procrastination?
Do it. Eat your veggies first, starting with the thing you feel least like doing or that has the most work involved, and break things up into small tasks.

Favourite getaway destination?
There’s nothing else like sundowners on a game drive in the bush.

Who or what inspires you?
I’m inspired by music daily. And by people that have overcome personal tragedies or major challenges to accomplish the seemingly impossible. For instance, Amputee Xolani Luvuno who completed the full IronMan with 1 leg and a broken hand this April.

Your one wish for South Africa?
That corruption is eradicated and for all South Africans to live and thrive in a carefree, safe society.

If you could have any 3 people over for dinner, who would they be and what would you serve?
Tiger Woods, Ed Sheeran and Gary Vanerchuck. I’d do an outdoor braai in summer, catering for everyone’s preferences. Sharing a good bottle of tequila.

What five pieces of advice would you give to aspiring young business starters?

  • Have funding and a budget in place, and always lean towards caution when preparing budgets.
  • You will need to have immense patience and resolve, understanding that it’s a longer than anticipated journey and full-time commitment.
  • Never be too shy to ask for help and advice on your journey.
  • Rather employ the services of fewer higher-skilled staff as opposed to many who are average.
  • Never be too busy to help others along the way.

  • What is the one thing most people don’t know about you?
    I’m passionate about new technologies.

    What would you do with an extra hour in your day?
    I would volunteer or spend the time helping others.