INFOGRAPHIC: From passion to fruition
MANILA, Philippines — There are so many traits that clearly set apart Millennials from past generations, but another curious thing is how differently they view work and employment. Millennials prioritize workplace flexibility over pay, opt to keep more than just one job, and prefer freelancing and self-employment to the traditional 9-to-5.
Millennials want to be their own boss. And with the power of the Internet, SME-friendly government policies, and growing availability of practical technologies, there is no better time for Millennials and people from all generations to start a business. But of course, being your own boss comes with its own set of challenges.
What kind of business is worth pursuing? How do you come up with the capital? What if I don’t do as well as my peers? What if it fails?
All of these are some of the most common questions and issues that budding entrepreneurs have to face when they decide to make the leap. And this is exactly why the early stage of starting a business is the hardest part — there are a lot of decisions to be made and it’s nerve-wracking.
If you’re someone completely new to entrepreneurship, then everything is all up in the air. Sure, it’s a wonderful prospect, being your own boss, but do you really have what it takes to commit to your business?
The probability of failure is also one of the stumbling blocks that potential entrepreneurs face. So in order to quell the fear, why don’t you take a cue from the Stoics and ask yourself, “What’s the worst thing that could happen?”
We asked Ginger Arboleda, mom, blogger, entrepreneur, business coach, and founder of Manila Workshops to help demystify the process of making a career change and starting up a business.
From corporate to entrepreneur
“I think people should always know their reasons ‘why’ before they jump into getting into business.”
An important part of being an entrepreneur is clarity. Know your strengths, your weaknesses, and most importantly, why you’re doing what you’re doing. After all, a business is a big commitment. If you’re not good at or don’t enjoy what you’re doing, then the rest of your journey as an entrepreneur won’t be as fun. That’s why many people struggle with coming up with a concept; it has to be something that's interesting to them and relevant to society.
The secret is to let the idea come organically. For Ginger, the desire to become an entrepreneur didn’t come on a whim; it all started when she became a mother. The reason she quit her corporate job was because she was entering a new phase in her life, which meant that she needed more time away from work and with her daughter. So after she quit, she started attending workshops to learn more about entrepreneurship. Along the way, she realized that there really weren’t many workshops out there, especially ones tailored for aspiring entrepreneurs.
Taking note of this, she realized that there was a need, and came up with the idea of Manila Workshops, where the tagline is “Turning your entrepreneurial dreams into reality.”
Birth pains of transition
“The reality is during the first years of business, it’s not a stroll in the park. It’s really hard. It’s a day-to-day struggle between managing time for your family and the time that you spend for your business.”
The first few months up to the first year of a business are the hardest part. It isn’t just all the processes and logistics; it’s the course of piecing everything together. This is the point where an entrepreneur’s patience and dedication will be tested, and it’s the part that has to be overcome. The biggest tip that Ginger can give to anyone who’s still going through the birth pains of transition is to surround yourself with people who support you, and to remember your reasons for becoming an entrepreneur.
It was in the first 3 months when the desire to quit and go back to corporate life came looming around. But thanks to the support of her husband and her daughter, she was able to power through the tough time.
If you’re able to overcome this first hurdle, you'll be ready to deal with the things to come.
“The most important thing in an entrepreneur’s life is time.”
How can you make your business more efficient and more profitable? This is when knowing your weaknesses come into play. Ginger’s biggest tip is to make use of the technology available to you. For example, use applications like Google Drive or Dropbox to store data and disseminate information. This saves you the time and effort spent on sending e-mails and briefing new employees.
Her best investment in terms of profit was in Globe’s new payment platform device, Globe Charge. Especially in this day and age where more and more people are becoming credit and debit card holders, payment platforms like Globe Charge allow small businesses to maximize their income potential by giving them the power to accept digital currency. This makes small businesses like Ginger’s Manila Workshops more inclusive to all kinds of customers.
“I’ve noticed that a lot of the people who are frequent attendees of my workshops are really those who have credit cards…so in terms of the demographics for my market it was a perfect fit.”
Because of that small change, Ginger’s revenue increased exponentially. And not just that, she also found that because of Globe Charge, payment became one less thing to worry about because it cuts short the long processes of counting change, drafting ORs, filling up withholding tax forms, and reconciliation.
“I think Globe Charge and my business, we have the same goal, which is really to help entrepreneurs, small businesses."
For more information on how to turn your passion and ideas into a full-fledged business, see this infographic.— Rappler.com