Networking, learning and sharing are key elements that I hold dearly upon. In the past 3 months, while I was doing a lot of business planning, there were a few things that were holding me back from officially registering and opening my small (probably one man operation) business. Inside my mind, there were a few stumbling blocks, I need to let it out and get them off.

In a recent networking session, I caught up with some business owner friends from other industries, it was great to catch up with them again! I knew that they were supportive, helpful and willing to share their knowledge and experiences from their entrepreneurship journeys in their business. I took the opportunity to meet my business owner friend, had a great chat, learning, sharing and networking.

I shared about my marketing role at Wills & Wills, an online legal services company offering –

(1) Make a Will Online

(2) Deed Poll

(3) Lasting Power of Attorney

(4) Advance Medical Directive 

They shared marketing tips with me especially on the part of guerrilla marketing/shock tactics marketing implemented in overseas markets such as USA, UK and Australia. I am now looking at how some of them could be possibly implemented here in Singapore. With their help and various alumni networks, holding seminars are now on the pipeline in the near future, partnering financial advisors / financial advisor representatives in an holistic estate planning seminars for alumnus friends or customers.

The real stumbling blocks inside my mind were pertaining to my photography business. I wanted to hear and listen to views from business owners outside the industry that might be able to give me insights and inputs from a neutral perspective since they are not inside the industry. Listening to their views and insights of the creative industry where photography is part of it, the creative industry has become a lot more fragmented and commoditised; the growth in social media and Internet played a big role in this. I have to handle it while I am navigating my way through my journeys in that area.

Another key concept that shook my mind was Business Plan versus Business Model, do you know the differences, and do you know the similarities? It was mind-boggling and I am glad that during our chat, I was enlightened to realise that I need to learn and know more about them, as a business owner, as an entrepreneur. Initially I have a business plan, now it is back to the drawing board to do my business model and business plan together.

During our lengthy discussion, sharing and networking session, there were more topics, ideas and thoughts that were brought up. It was a great sharing, learning and mentoring session that I really appreciate. I do and really hope that we can bring this form of networking, learning, sharing sessions to different alumni groups and business networking groups among my fellow alumnus. That would be very interesting and powerful with business owners, management level executives, entrepreneurs, start-ups and aspiring young business owners to sit down, get together and have such wonderful sessions.

Rounding up this article, this sharing might be the highlight for some of my readers and followers. The current economic climate in Singapore and worldwide is not ideal and it’s pretty bleak. The worse is yet to come, coupled it with FEAR, it just make things much more bleak, getting worse till 2017 (from some analysts, economists and industry views). My business owner friend shared something that a Fengshui Master predicted it would get worse till 2018 where it would hit rock bottom in 2018. The year 2016 is the year that people and businesses have to change to prepare for the upcoming round of market downturn and to change their business models, operations and practices for the future. Having seen the 2008 / 2009 global crisis and our complacency in life, we might be in for another big shock if measures by everybody from businesses, government and the people themselves make the changes and prepare for the future.

My life journey changes in 2016 started in Q1, I had to change due to the unforseen circumstances thrown upon me. There were some huge changes and I took a huge step to do something on my own. Ironically, the change that people and businesses needed to start in 2016, I had started and I am now still working on it, the journey is long and far, it’s only the first few steps.

Sometimes, you feel that you are walking alone. However, with a group of supporting friends, networks, partners and business, You’ll Never Walk Alone.

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