Empowered and inspirational women: The entrepreneurial journey of Zanele Maduna

Zanele Maduna, is a remarkable trailblazing woman from Boitumelo, Gauteng, who took a giant leap to create a business with a profound mission – No-Valo.

Zanele Maduna, CEO at No-Valo Learning Centre

Zanele Maduna, CEO at No-Valo Learning Centre

No-Valo is a training solution, coaching, and mentoring enterprise. Beyond catering to professionals, No-Valo extends its impact to students at the university level, recognising the pivotal role of mentoring and coaching both career and life development.

The name ‘No-Valo’ embodies their ethos – a fusion of ‘no’ for negation and ‘valo’, a Zulu word meaning fear. In essence, No-Valo translates to ‘no fear’, a testament to their fearless approach to business and life. Zanele’s vision goes beyond conventional success; it’s a vision to eradicate poverty through education and coaching, affecting a sustainable difference in people’s lives.

No-Valo’s mission centres on equipping individuals with skills and knowledge that enable effective self-leadership and empower them to thrive within the business landscape. Self-leadership is a way of life for Maduna, a skill she was taught by her Thuthuka mentor while still at university. Maduna is a Saica member and a Thuthuka Bursary alumnus – that’s where her strong vision of paying it forward comes from – she understands that it takes a village to succeed, and the ripple effect of collective success to build better communities.

In a world where impactful businesses are driven by purpose and sustained by genuine connections, Zanele exemplifies the transformative power of entrepreneurship when fuelled by a vision that goes beyond profit – a vision that, at its core, is about empowering individuals to conquer challenges with a resounding ‘no fear’.

Zanele’s insights for navigating entrepreneurship:


Like how you reflect on your life, you need to reflect on your business to stay aligned to your purpose. Maduna’s approach involves quarterly and weekly reflections, ensuring they stay on par with industry trends and minimising any gaps that could impede impactful business practices. Maduna, understanding the demanding nature of entrepreneurship, embraces both the challenging and optimistic aspects of the journey.

Speak to your customers

For Maduna, the heartbeat of No-Valo lies in the testimonials and insights shared by their clientele. Customer feedback becomes not only a tool for improvement but a source of motivation, fuelling their drive to continually enhance the value they provide, and staying relevant.

Network and nurture relationships

Maduna is a people’s person, a beautiful part of her character that allows her to forge and nurture meaningful relationships. She is still friends with her mentor from university, a person that she believes was a catalyst of her entrepreneurial journey. Networking is an essential skill for every entrepreneur, it enables growth and diversification.

Lifelong learning

In a fast-paced world, staying relevant means integrating learning into your daily routine. Maduna keeps herself current by reading, networking and speaking to her customers. Her must-reads include Who Moved My Cheese by Dr Spencer, which speaks to adaptation – a crucial life skill. Maduna, also recommends The Lean Startup by Eric Ries and Start With Why by Simon Sinek. These are impactful reads recommended by Maduna to discover your purpose and propel your career or business forward.

Invest in a coach

Investing in a coach holds value for personal and professional growth, guidance, and support. Having someone to exchange ideas with can aid in clarifying your purpose to move forward purposefully and intentionally pursuing one’s goals.

Face your fears

Fear is a natural emotion, and Maduna firmly believes it can be conquered. It should never hinder the pursuit of your goals; wisdom suggests that the best version of yourself is on the other side of fear. Maduna’s commitment to facing her fears aligns with her business pillars; self-leadership, peak performance and future-proofing your career.

As Maduna advocates, life is a purposeful journey – invest in yourself in 2024, find your purpose and face each day with a resounding ‘no fear’.

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