Sunday, July 1, 2012

Signs That You Are Ready To Get Into Business?

Getting into business or in any undertaking for that matter takes readiness. Readiness mean things were given a careful and great deal of thought - like marriages or enrolling yourself into the college course of your choice.

But then, once in our lives, someone somewhere, might have bluntly said to our face that there's no such thing as being ready. Contradicting.

Anyway, how would you know that "that" readiness is enough to fuel you to get into business?

Here are some signs that may guide you to assess your readiness for business.

1. When those who matter express their support to your venture 

“I’ve always wanted to have a business of my own. Business signifies freedom . The issue is, kaya ko ba? And because in life, you don’t control many things, I had to make sure that I had God’s approval. I did not do it on my own. As I was moving, first, I asked God, and then I asked my wife. I need to get her agreement because she will walk with me. Pag-ayaw niya, the walk will never be nice, magpe-fail ang negosyo. I was getting information from the important people – God first, then my wife and children – those I will walk with in this journey.”- Jose Cacanando was a Hewlett-Packard Philippines executive, being third in line to succeed the general manager in the multinational firm in 1997, when he started feeling restless and wondered if he should do something else.
After praying hard and asking for signs for his decision, Cacanando put up Moriah Farms, whose clients included McDonald’s and Kentucky Fried Chicken, in Bukidnon.

2. When you have learned enough

“I didn’t have difficulty starting businesses, because my stint as an employee for other companies taught me the ropes. I had first hand experience on how things worked. My only regret was I didn’t become an entrepreneur earlier. I might have done more things.” - Richard Dalao was happy being an employee because he was getting regular promotions and he was challenged by the job. In 1983, a near-death experience made him leave the company he was working for and start his own business.  He tried a number of ventures until he put up Agri-PTS, a comprehensive farming, production, and marketing company, as a result of his growing interest in agriculture. The business is also into producing and selling low-value crops in farms in Laguna and Baguio.

3. When you’re sure of what you’re getting into

“Before I left my job, I made sure I knew what I was getting into, and that it would work for the long-term because if I failed, it would be hard to go back to work. I also made sure that the investment was not too big so I won’t be frustrated if things didn’t turn out as expected.” -Warren Sy  realized that his efforts as an employee was not being rewarded commensurately after closing a sale of P2 million worth of office equipment to a school and only receiving P2,000 as commission. Thereafter he had a revelation: He could go into business so he could keep everything he made. Sy found a partner and put up Glam Lab, a personal care company producing lotions, body oils, soaps, mists and fragrances.

4. When you know that your business idea is great

“While I was still working for ITT (an American conglomerate), I went home for a vacation and toured Kalinga in the Cordilleras. There I saw groups of women weaving baskets with intricate patterns and I thought, ‘Ang galing nila.’ And then sometimes, my father would take me to see furniture in a place called Merchandise Mart. It’s a big building in Chicago where entrance is by invitation only, it’s very exclusive because you will find only the best furniture there. I saw Philippine-made furniture being displayed there and I realized this was a business I wanted to get into. I was in a company making pumps and motor and they were so boring compared to Philippine furniture. I became very inspired, and I knew then that I have to get into this business.” - Jofel Balbaran, an engineer, who first joined the family business of producing furniture until he finally set up "The Julianne Collection." The venture was able to attract buyers such as celebrity Kris Aquino and movie producer Vic del Rosario. The Julianne Collection’s products were also being exported.

5. When you find yourself looking for a new challenge

“It was plain and simple: I got bored. When that time comes, you know you have to do something about it.” - Arnold Vegafria studied dentistry and practiced for three months, but his heart was not in sciences, but in the arts. In 1994, he set up ALV Events International, which produced concerts and was also engaged in mounting fashion shows, product launches, trade fairs, mall and provincial record tours, press conferences  and political campaigns. Vegafria also ventured into talent management and put up an advertising agency with a partner.

6. When the people that you love are giving you enormous help 

“With my parents’ help and my technical experience, I got a lot of encouragement to come home and open BTIC (Better than Ice Cream). My parents helped with the financial side of the business, but unlike in my former job, there was no formula to follow when we started. I went to business school in 2000, but I realized I was studying what I knew already.”- Pie Bonoan Cabigas finished chemistry at the University of Hawaii while her father was working for the Bank of Hawaii in 1985.  Cabigas knew she would start a frozen yogurt business the moment she stepped on Philippine soil. The first BTIC stored opened in Park Square Makati in November 1990, in time for the Christmas season.

7.  When you want to do things your own way

“There came a point when we were trying to start new things at IBM and we were getting some resistance from upper management, because they were concerned about other things. Eventually, we decided just to leave IBM to work on the problem ourselves and see what happens.”- Peter Valdes, a technopreneur, co-founded Vinta Systems, a software product development company in 1998. Vinta Systems has made waves in the advertising industry through its Media Optimization and Administration Systems software, a program that not only automates the entire media planning process, but also revolutionizes the way media plans are crafted.

8. When you know that you can offer the market a solution that it badly needs

Arnichem Corp.  was born primarily out of the frustration that my husband and I couldn’t offer farmers a biotechnology product that was effective. Scientist ka, alam mo naman ang technology, why can’t you offer something? So we just went ahead and did it ourselves. Now, we’re glad because we’ve produced a product that not only helps the farmers, but helps the country as well.”- Nina Halos was a biotechnologist  at the University of the Philippines at Los BaƱos and another 12 years at UP Diliman, before she was made director of the university’s Molecular Biology and Biotechnology program. Nina used her separation pay from UP and her husband’s income from Philrice to come up with initial product samples of Vital N fertilizer.

9. When you’re already financially capable

“I knew I was ready when I gained ample experience and enough financial capability to be my own boss.”
- Ina Sy  put up Lincolnshire Internationale Preschool after preparing  a Singaporean school approving and implementing a curriculum she had prepared and realizing that she wanted to work with children. As a former teacher , Sy knew the problems faced by school administrator herself. Among the problems she wanted to address in early childhood education included shortcomings in teaching methodology, structure of learning areas and centers, classroom set-up and teacher-student ratios.  Sy and a partner sank in P4 million to put up the pre-school in Ortigas.

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