There are several economic activities and businesses in which members of Zenebwork community are engaged to make a living. This ranges from different informal small scaled businesses to formal and organized businesses. The vast majority of Zenebwork community members are engaged in unorganized small scale businesses composed mainly of home based enterprises. These include; selling Tella (local beer), Areke (local alcohol), Tej (honey wine), “Shameta”, tea, biscuit and “Sambusa”. Home based enterprises such as tanager games (Joteni, DSTV, Kerenbula, table tennis etc ) are also common in the community. A considerable number of community members are also engaged in renting houses for local liquor, Khat and Shisha houses and Suk (shops), and renting bed for low income laborers and commercial sex workers. In most of the houses that rent bed, there are approximately 8 double deck low class beds in a very tiny space not exceeding 10 meter square. A bed is rented for a minimum price of 10 ETB per night.
Some households are engaged in collecting and selling rubbish items and materials from Koshe, the city’s largest garbage damping site. They sell rubbish items and materials for people who are traditionally known as ‘Kuralew’ and for others who want to re-use them. Few community members own businesses like pharmacy, beauty salons, and barbershops. Zenebwork community also has an open local market that is active on Wednesdays and Saturdays. This market serves as a market not only for this community but also for others from the surrounding communities (Ayertena, Total and Kore areas). People buy and sell different items and materials including food, clothing, household utensils etc from this local market and the Gulits surrounding it.
Members of Zenebwork community are also endowed with different skills and talents. These include; ginbegninet (masonry), anatsi (carpentry), lesagn, kelem kebi (painter) and feroye (people who specialize in erecting iron bars). These people earn a living using their skills both being employed temporarily and working by themselves up on call/request by people who need their services. There is also a sub community of the dorze tribe in Zenebwork area who are well known for weaving. They earn a living by making traditional clothes commonly known as Tibeb and also cloth for priests called tinig dirib.
Few other community members are organized into cooperatives of small businesses by the district micro and small enterprise development office. They were given startup capital/seed money after they were provided with different business and entrepreneurship skill trainings.
They are now engaged in different activities including; producing and selling spices and food items (ye baltina wutetoch), dairy production, coble stone, animal fattening, metal work, wood work, mill houses (wofcho bet) etc.