A Small Advise

We often have grand plans when we want to start a business. Usually we get excited with our plans, and then, POOF!

We get distracted and sometimes we get discouraged by people around us. This leads to the loss of motivation in doing your plans. When we lose our motivation, we often set aside our our plans, and sometimes we get lazy in pursuing it. Then, we abandon the plan.

We believe that what you have in mind as your dream business is a great plan! Whenever you feel discouraged and lazy in pursuing your grand plan, here’s our small advise for you:

You Can Do It!

You Can Do It!

If you believe in what you have started, we believe in that too! Kaya mo yan! Tinatamad ka lang! (You can do it! You are just feeling lazy.)

Share your thoughts. Maybe we can help.

Turon Wars (Part 2): How Big Business Is Swallowing Up Our Beloved Tindahans

http://bloggingmama.com/turon/

The first thing anyone notices when they check out the turon on display in SM, Waltermart or any other bigger commercial establishment is the consistency of what’s being offered for sale: from the size to the color to the taste of each turon, the ones you buy from their in-store grocery are always the same. It’s not like the ones you buy outside from the average street vendor—everything is uniformly done.

Turon, on the other hand, varies from one tindero or tindera to another—perhaps one is more generous with the caramel, or the other fries theirs a little bit longer, making the turon darker and crisper. The bananas could be sweeter or smaller one day, or cut a little bit bigger the next. But each turon was made in their homes, as part of a plan to provide for their families—perhaps to pay for day to day expenses or offset tuition costs.

The average price of turon in SM and other malls ranges from 15 to 20 pesos, while the turon you buy from a street vendor will be 10 pesos from the walking tinderas, or 12 pesos if they have a fixed stand somewhere. A couple of extra pesos will get you a larger turon or turon with cheese or langka (jackfruit) if you feel like giving your taste buds a break from your usual snack. Nowadays, many people who are more stringent about food preparation and hygiene, or who prefer to eat inside an air-conditioned food court, buy from these malls. But these small comforts which you think are only bought with a few extra pesos in your wallet have been making it harder for these street vendors to make a living.

Think about it: it’s true that it’s very convenient to just go to the mall and buy yourself a piece, but isn’t it just as convenient anyway to buy one from someone just around the corner of your village? Furthermore, these big malls are selling these turons to increase their profit margins—profit margins that don’t necessarily guarantee better salaries or working conditions for their contractual workers. Meanwhile, buying from the nearest manang fanning her bananacue pile will help her substantially—you could be helping fund her child’s education, or perhaps their groceries for next week. Your patronage of their homegrown businesses—which, let’s face it, are done in environments not really that much more or less sterile as that used to source your big mall’s turon—will have a big impact on their lives.

These larger businesses have been crowding out smaller family-owned establishments over the span of decades, and street vendors. What you gain from them in terms of flavor consistency and comfort, is lost by the individual sellers, who end up scrimping on basic necessities just to pay for the goods which keep their livelihood going. Just think of the street vendors along the roads of universities or near public transportation hubs—those who take the time to chat them up find out that their turon and bananacue business provides for many family members, perhaps even as the only means of income for that group of people. Surely it is better to try turon even from the nearest vendor and help both your tummy and their budgets.

We should be ethical consumers and think about what we do with the things we buy. What is the essence of turon, if not as a homemade, beloved and familiar treat that we first learned to savor with our family and friends? Turon is a Filipino food meant to be shared and to bring comfort. When you next think of where to get your sugar fix, have a peek at what’s in manang’s bilao instead of enduring a trip to the mall. You may find yourself coming back for that perfect rush of carbs and caramel.

Turon Wars (Part 1): A Traditional Comfort Food as a Mom and Dad Business

Moving enough of a familiar product to make a profit is no easy feat—and what could be more ubiquitous than the beloved turon? This humble snack, made of bananas and a little sugar wrapped in a spring roll wrapper before being deep-fried, has graced both the bilaos of many a street vendor, and the tables of fine-dining establishments. Whether you like your traditional turon, the delicious varieties that come with langka or cheese, or have eaten it a la mode with hazelnut spread and chocolate in your latest dining hot spot, this is a food that has enjoyed enduring popularity.

Making it seems straightforward enough; along with banana-cue—fried bananas covered in sugar or syrup on a stick—the turon is something anyone with a big frying pan and ingredients can make. Cooking turon and selling it is actually a great home-based business because of the minimal funds you’ll need for starting it up, as well as the level of skill required to make this easy recipe. As long as you maintain your proportions of ingredients properly, wrap the turon well and keep an eye on them in the pan so they don’t overcook, you’ll have yourself a beautiful batch of turon that would make your lola proud.

The trick is to build yourself a solid customer base that will keep coming back for your turon and banana-cue. In selling turon, remember that the first selling point is making it affordable—most street vendors price turon at 10 pesos per piece, and charge a couple of pesos more if the turon includes cheese or langka, or is a larger size. Apart from affordability, it must be kept portable—so wrapping the turon tightly is a must before you fry it to ensure it doesn’t fall apart.

The beauty of selling banana-cue alongside it is that if you run out of spring roll wrappers, you can just make banana-cue and keep your stock of bananas from going to waste. It’s an efficient and basic business model that has helped a lot of Filipinos provide for their families—and even build up enough capital to start bigger businesses. This food is also very easy to take from one place to another and doesn’t spoil easily, which is convenient for both the seller and the people who enjoy taking a bite out of this delectable snack everyday. When you choose to sell turon, location actually matters only in terms of foot traffic, so whether you want to make it a staple in your sari-sari store, bring several dozen to work and sell to your officemates, or even set up a little stand in your subdivision just outside your house, any entrepreneur can make it work.

Eating turon is a simple pleasure that has been elevated to elegant cuisine. The timeless flavor combination of thickly-sliced cooked bananas and rich caramel, accompanied by the satisfying crunch of a freshly-fried wrapper, makes for one incredible mouthful that will keep you full for several hours, making it a wonderful treat that isn’t laden with unhealthy amounts of fat and sugar. Adding cheese and langka are an easy way to boost profits and to add a different layer of satisfaction to turon—cheese enhances the richness of the caramel-banana combination and provides a contrast to the sweetness, which langka (jackfruit) strips are a healthier but delicious fruit which gives your turon a more tropical punch.

Think of your turon as the Asian cousin to the equally-delicious dessert of bananas foster, a pick-me-up that needs no utensils and can put a little sweetness to anyone’s day. There’s a reason why there are so many street vendors from corner to corner, earning an honest living and catering to both the casual buyer and their loyal customers alike—every batch of turon is different from each other, no matter how indiscernibly so it may be for anyone else who doesn’t understand why you keep coming back to that one stand. Turon’s appeal is just something no one can resist—you know you’re a Filipino when you find yourself looking for this dessert no matter where you happen to be.

Contributor: Lesly Bries

MLM Business: Is It The Right One For You?

Multi Level Marketing or MLM for short has been around for so many years already. According to some sources, as early as the 1920’s there’s been a business model that uses this kind of strategy in promoting or selling products. Over the years, here in the Philippines, some MLM companies have sprouted and a lot have vanished into thin air. Some have claimed that they have earned a lot in this kind of business and some say that they only just lost their money in joining this kind of investment.

So, is MLM or Multi Level Marketing for you?

First of all let us understand what is Multi Level Marketing. It is a marketing strategy in which the members or the sales force is compensated with the products that they sell, and earn whenever their recruits also sell the products. These recruits are commonly called the down-lines. Selling of the products are done with the use of word of mouth, but, with the age of social media, it is also done using the social networks by members of the MLM business. Members also gets compensated when they recruit new members to join the business of selling a particular product. Common products that are being sold are health drinks, soaps, whitening solutions, prepaid load, etc. How do you earn from this? What we usually hear is you get discounts on the products that are exclusively available from the business. These MLM companies offer up to 70% discounts on the products that you would purchase and eventually sell to others at retail prices. The MLM companies also give premiums of compensates you whenever you recruit someone to join the company. And depending on the level of recruits, you get a certain percentage from the sales they have generated. Some MLM companies also have a scheme of building your network by placing your down-lines on a left and right group and get a bonus whenever you have paired one from your left and right group. And there are a lot of other means of earning when you join the company and purchase an initial package from them. A lot have criticized MLM companies for being a bogus business and sometimes labeled as a form of a scam. Some would even say that only the first ones to join are the ones who profit from the business just like in this diagram:

Some say it is just a trap!

It may be true that these accusations have been proven, but, sometimes it is also true that there are people even not the first one to join have profited from this kind of business and they have been doing it for years already. A lot have offered this kind of business and some of them are nowhere to be found now, or some have just quit doing it. There are still some who are doing it consistently and live up to what they have been doing: selling the products and recruiting. The way we see it, there are Multi Level Marketing companies that are legitimate and true to what they are selling and there are others who are just after the recruits and the signup fees to get revolving funds to compensate the recruiters. You could easily see which one is true and legitimate and the ones who just want you to recruit and recruit again for profit. Those who are legitimate and true to how MLM works usually have the following elements in their scheme:

  • There is little or no enrollment fee.
  • The company completely explains itself, its products, and its services before you sign-up.
  • A member’s main source of income will come from selling or offering the company’s products and/or services.
  • A member can make money at ANY level of the model without recruiting new members.

Also, we also believe that for an individual to prosper,you should be doing something for you to earn. So, if the MLM company promises that you will earn by doing nothing or letting your down-line do the work for you, the company is doing something fishy. Aside from the elements, here are some questions you might want to ask yourself before engaging in a MLM company:

  • Are the products being offered sale-able and see myself using the products? – For example, the MLM company that offers prepaid load for mobile use or gaming. If you are a post-paid subscriber, definitely the products will be useless to you and you won’t have credibility in selling the product for you are not using it. So, if you see yourself using the products and services, and you can be confident that you can sell it, then you may want to consider joining the MLM company.
  • Can I afford the joining fees or the initial product package? If the joining fees are too high, then forget about it! If it is a struggle for you to produce the joining fee, then what do you think others would also feel when they join you? As stated in the elements of a legitimate MLM, the enrollment or joining fee should be free or minimal. If the fees are that high, most probably the money you pay for would just be for the benefit of those up above.
  • Am I ready to risk being labeled as a scammer? Sad but true…  If you truly believe in the product or the company that you represent, being labeled doesn’t really matter to you now. With all the scams that involved MLM companies, you can never erase the stigma they have brought upon the MLM Businesses. This burden you will have to carry and prove others wrong.
  • Do I have the right personality in this kind of business? Assess yourself. If you think, your personality doesn’t fit being in this kind of business wherein you have to be sociable and active, you better think twice or thrice.
  • Am I ready to be turned down by my friends? The first ones to whom you will offer your products would be family members and friends. Because of the stigma produced by the shady MLM businesses, most people would initially reject you once they knew what you are offering is a Multi Level Marketing business.

If you have assessed yourself to be fit for this kind of business and you believe in the products to be useful and beneficial, go ahead, join and get involved in the Multi Level Marketing Business. But, if you feel that this business model is not suited for you, follow what you feel. Starting a business with doubts is not a good sign that you will succeed in this kind of venture.

So, is Multi Level Marketing Business really for you? Share your thoughts and if you have questions, we’ll be here to share our experiences… Successful ones and the not so profitable ones… Let’s learn from one another. And, a final thought about MLM… Not all Multi Level Marketing Businesses are scams. There are also success stories in this kind of business. You just have to be careful and very analytical on this kind of business, and do not rush things out by being fooled by the pictures of bundles of cash, expensive cars, cheques with huge amounts, etc.

Turning Hobbies to Business: Hitting a Flock of Birds with One Shot

Choosing Beads For A Unique NecklaceHobbies are considered to be personal pastime. It may be cross-stitching, painting, designing for clothes, etc. The fact that it interests you and you continuously do it, it can be turned into a business. With some twitching and fixing on ways how you handle your time and how you do it, you hobby might be a successful business.

In our previous posts, Starting A Business While Working Full Time and When Starting a Business… Have Fun, we have discussed about things to consider when starting a business. Now, we’re adding some insights for a person who would want to start a business. Why not start with your hobbies? It’s one of the best ideas to start with since its considered a pastime and it can be done outside your work schedule. And definitely, it won’t be a hobby if you are not enjoying it or having fun while doing it.

Here are some hobbies that we find to be profitable and can be turned into a part-time or a full-time business:

Cooking/Baking – Cooking or baking is one of the most common hobbies that are transformed into a full blown business. We must say that some hobbyists do cook or bake better than the professionals. With a little twisting and turning outside cooking and baking, add up some marketing, sales and money management, this hobby can be a great business, especially when you are good at it and do it better than those pros.

Photography – Another common hobby that is turned into a business. With the right effort, skill, connections, and guidance, this hobby can be a really profitable business. Like cooking or baking, some hobbyists are really good at it and even create quality shots which are far more better than those who say they are into the business of events photography. Some of hobbyists we know only uses point-and-shoot cameras or film cameras in their craft, and they make better prints. There’s even a saying, “Hindi porket naka DSLR ka, professional photographer ka na”. So, when you are into a photography hobbyist with a group with the same interest, why not give it a try? If photography is something you love to do and you are good at, make it as your part-time business. We believe that those who love their craft produces better results than those who do it because it is their job.

Designing – Fashion design, lay-outing, painting, concept designing, etc. Most of these hobbies are really done during free time and it can turned into a profitable business if you got also the talent for it. Freelancing during free times while working isn’t bad when you got the skills and talent, and when you love what you do and feel good about it, this artistic side of you can really be a solid business. Setting up a design firm is no joke, but when what you’ll be doing would be fun for you, it’s just a piece of cake. We know of some designers or inventors who are doing concept designs as his part-time business, while he is still working for a local government office. He loves what he does, he’s having fun, and most of all he’s cashing in a lot in his business!

There are other hobbies out there that some just take them for granted and do them a their own leisure. With some entrepreneural inspiration and a little push, you’ll turn what you love doing into a great business. If you are good at it, think of it as an opportunity to be your own business that you’ll have fun.

So, when you are a hobbyist who turned the hobby as a business, don’t just say that you are, “hitting two birds with one stone”, it would be better to say “hitting a flock of birds with one shot.” You have fun, you do what you love, you earn while you do it, have a lot of time with your family, and so many other reasons to make it a successful business.

You can never say that there are no more opportunities… You make those opportunities, it’s just a matter of starting it!

When Starting a Business… Have FUN

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from @01liners

Back when I was teaching elementary kids, one thing that made me enjoy my profession is that I always keep in mind that I should have FUN! At the same time, the kids should also have FUN!

After several years not teaching kids and being a slave for other people in the corporate world, the word fun has deteriorated in my vocabulary in the workplace. Slowly, the job itself becomes toxic and stressful. Having realized that having fun is not present in the work environment, I quit and find a new one. Now that I am venturing into a new territory, one of the rules that I would be pinning into my wall would be “HAVE FUN”.

Starting a business or being employed, one thing that keeps us motivated and lets us keep on going aside from our priorities, is having fun. We often hear people who are successful in their businesses or work, they are having fun in what they are doing that’s why they are in their current position. Having fun or having the feeling of delight makes us do more productive things and even radiate it to others around. Having fun makes us create more meaningful ideas and have it executed with enthusiasm.

So, when starting a business, one of the things that would make it a success is to make sure that YOU HAVE FUN in the things that you would do. Some questions that you might consider asking yourself when planning to start a business:

  1. Am I going to have fun with what I’ll be doing?
  2. Will the people who will be working in the business be having fun at work?
  3. Will my target clients have fun in dealing with my business?

If all the answers are yes, then, consider it as a starting point in planning your business.

HAVE FUN!

Grow Your Money This 2015…

Money PlantI stumbled upon an article from Entrepreneur Philippines recently: 3 Ways To Grow Your Money In 2015. With the title itself, got curious and clicked on it right away. Coming from a respectable magazine, this advise is something to be read and be taken into consideration.

1.    Invest in stocks or bonds

One way of securing your financial status is by way of investing your money in stocks or bonds. A lot of people, not just entrepreneurs, have invested in such as it pays higher dividends compared to banks. No need to worry if you’re new to this business because you can seek help from financial advisors to assess your suitability for investing. It usually depends on how much risk you are willing to take—whether you’re a conservative or aggressive investor, these experts will help you decide what’s best for you based on your income. This is especially good for long-term goals.

2.    Invest in a franchise concept

If you’re still quite confused with stocks, you can invest in a franchise business instead. Buying a ready-made business with a reputable brand and history is also one way of growing your money. Owning a franchise requires a lot of research. You do not want to waste your money on immediate buying just to start up your franchise business. Identify what business would you want to own and then research carefully about it. However, remember that these business expansions have its own advantages and disadvantages, so make sure you’re adept with its business process.

3.    Invest in your own business concept

Building a business of your own is challenging, but with great effort and hard work, you’ll grow your money in here. If you’re a budding entrepreneur, it is better to make yourself familiar with how a business runs. Attend entrepreneurship seminars or ask advice from the business experts to help you get going.

While it is a good advise for young entrepreneurs, would be businessmen, mom and dads, and employees, the question is… Can you afford to invest in stocks and bonds, a franchise concept, or your own business concept? But, what if you only have so much that it would take time or maybe even the whole 2015 before you have the resources to invest in the three? Would limited resources hold you back?

Investing in stocks or bonds… How much do we really have to invest? If you have an extra Php500.00 do you think it would be enough to invest it in stocks or bonds? Yes, as low as Php500.00 you can invest in stocks! I have seen in a bank advertisement that you can start investing in stocks for as low as Php 500.00. But, with bonds, you would have to have enough to spare and keep it invested in the bonds long term. Also, the 500.00 would take time before you see a significant increase there.

Investing in a franchise concept would be really tricky and this should be taken with a whole lot of thinking. Yes, the franchise would be a good investment given the track record of the business and its operations. This investment would cost a lot, especially those franchise concepts that are really proven and popular. But, if you would invest in franchise concepts, just make sure you are not just joining the bandwagon and regret your decision in the future.

If having limited resources would be a hindrance in investing in the two tips above, investing in your own business concept would be the best choice in growing your money this year. With Php500.00 or less, you can start your own simple start-up business to grow.  A radio show, Radyo Negosyo, hosted by Dr. Carl E. Balita (@drcarlbalita) every Saturday night has a segment wherein the guests share their success stories when they started out their business with only Php500.00 or less. So, if the guests in the radio show can do it, why can’t we? As long as the business concept you have started interests you, and you are committed to grow it, making your resources double, triple, or maybe even more would be very easy. Just make sure you share it with your partner or spouse, and its very important that he/she supports you in investing on your own business concept so it would be easy to make it happen.

So, are you ready to make your money grow this year?

As the core group of the Support Local Mom and Dad Movement have decided to make the idea legitimate, we will be registering it as an organization very soon, to further reach out and help local mom and dads start a part-time or full time business. We’re just making the final preparations and we are good to go! We’ll post in our future blog articles how we can help in starting your own business… the right way.

Please like us on Facebook Support Local Mom And Dad Business and share it to your fellow mom and dads!

Questions Before Starting To Plan for a New Business

Are you thinking of starting a business? Here are some guide questions that would help you out in planning for your start up business:

  1. The product or service I would be offering, is it something that people want to buy or to avail? Or is it just something I want to sell?
  2. Are you good at following through on your ideas, plans, and projects?
  3. Do you have enough funds to start the business?
  4. Are you going to work on a tight budget for expenses?
  5. Do you expect too much from the revenues projected?
  6. Will the business allow cash to flow in as soon as possible?
  7. Are you ready to test your service or product before even launching it?
  8. Do you have strong social skills?
  9. Are you good in short-term and long-term planning?
  10. Do you want to be in-charge and make decisions?
  11. Are you proactive and willing to take on challenges?
  12. Are you adaptable and can easily sway when the need arises?
  13. Are you willing to take calculated risks?
  14. Are you ready to make mistakes and learn from them?

If your answers are mostly yes, then you are ready to start planning for your business. These are just some realities that you might encounter along the way. There are no perfect answers to the questions posted above.

As long as you are prepared for the challenges coming your way, there is no perfect time to start a business. You just need to know some realities like: demand for the service or product, cash flow, income potential, marketability, and flexibility. Then, if you are ready, why not do it NOW?

Why Giving is Good For Your Business

Why giving is good for your business… And it shouldn’t be this Christmas season only.
This is the time of the year when businesses spend a lot… On bonuses, 13th month pay, gifts and giveaways, etc. It is also the time when businesses spend most of their CSR budgetand give out to charities.
Thinking about it… shelling out your business’ budget for CSR on a particular season might be painful in the pockets, considering that you have to allocate a budget for bonuses, Christmas party and year-end. Why not spread out giving the whole year-round?
Some good reasons why giving should be spread out throughout the year, or simply make Christmas season the whole year. Take for example sponsoring or giving out to a grassroots program of a football club who teaches less fortunate kids:

  1. Sponsoring doubles as marketing – Sponsoring a charity or even a simple grassroots football program can double as marketing for your business. Everywhere the football team goes, they carry your business as you have sponsored them. In every competition, your brand is carried and will be visible to others.
  2. It boosts employee morale– As individuals, giving back to communities makes us feel good, makes us more socially aware, and helps us bond with colleagues as we team up with those in need. In this case, getting involved in a grassroots program would be beneficial to the business and to its employees, as this may be a venue to interact with less fortunate kids and other players of the club who are receiving from the sponsors.
  3. Increased network opportunities – The game of football is now picking up interest in the Philippines and we can see a lot of football clinics left and right. And these clinics have their own corporate sponsors also. With such support, having a common ground, which is football, it would be easier to interact with other businesses to expand the business.
  4. Generate positivity around your brand – We all know that consumers appreciate and support socially conscious businesses because it causes them to become emotionally invested.

Still thinking of spreading the benefits of your business? You can support in any way Don Bosco Garelli United Football Club. Your sponsorship may come a long way by helping the student athletes and the grassroots program for less fortunate kids in the Metro.

Business Ideas Working Mom and Dads Can Start

During several conversations with old friends who are married and are employed, most of the time I hear the question, “Pare, may alam ka ba na pwede i-sideline?” This has been a common scenario for mom and dads who are still struggling to make ends meet. I usually tell them, “Ano ba hilig mo? San ka ba magaling o gusto mo matuto? Kaya mo ba? It is not having a side-line… It would be better to start a part-time business wherein you can continue it as a full-time business when you are ready.”

Given the three questions posed: being interested, being skilled or ready to learn, and being doable… Here are ten part-time business ideas where a mom and dad can start even in their own spare time. Easy to be interested in… easy to learn… and really doable even on a part-time basis.

  1. Deliver Only Food Service – Working on a day shift? BPOs and Call Centers usually operate 24/7. With the right planning, timing and network, a couple can engage in this part-time business. If a couple works on a day shift, it would be nearly impossible that they don’t have anybody in their network of friends who are working in a BPO or Call Center. Better use them as the ones who will spread the word. Cooked meals at home can be increased depending on the orders. Its like hitting two birds with one stone… A meal for the family and meals for others as a part-time business.
  2. Online Boutique –  Especially for moms… Most women would love to be unique in terms of their fashion. Unique in a way that they are still within the trend but have a sense of having a particular outfit that is only limited and exclusive. With the help of online videos and other reading materials, one can learn to design your own clothing line. Outsource the production and sell them online.
  3. Direct Selling -Make sure that you hook up with legitimate direct-selling company that interests you. It will be the products that these company you would pitch in selling. Use your network of friends for a start and this one can be done also in the workplace! Just make sure you prioritize your job first.
  4. Freelance – In general, this would really depend on your interest. For example, freelance photography… Start with some photowalks and publish your own collection. Just make you sure you indicate your name or your alias in those photos when you publish it online to show ownership. Share it with your network and offer the photography service on a part-time or on your day-off. We’re pretty sure everything will follow. Another is freelance writing… If writing is your forte, there are a lot of websites that you can post your service as a writer. If you are good at it, and you get good reviews, a lot will get your service. Same goes with other freelance services like graphic design, web or app development, bookkeeping, etc.

These are just a few. It is really important that you do it right and put effort into it. It would also be better if the mentality of having it as a part-time wherein you can excel in it, develop it, and eventually do it full time, rather than aiming for a side-line and aiming for one-time, big-time.