Venturing into Business in the Philippines – How to Give Yourself a Head Start to Being Your Own Boss

A common prudent financial practice is to follow the admonition saying “live within your means”. But what if you your means is too meager that you find it unsustainable to live within what you can afford? What if living within your means would mean that you sacrifice the quality of your life? Like if you have to forego sending your kids to a good school or stop traveling or discontinue your hobbies.

These are painful things to give up and it will undoubtedly affect your happiness. Like any other resource, there’s a minimum threshold for money that we aspire to achieve so that we can do the things we want to do. But if we’re just always trying to live within the means at our disposal, this may not be possible to do.

Starting a Business

Obviously you have to increase your income or earnings to solve this problem. But how do you go about it? I believe you either have to find a better-paying job or you can start your own business. If you want a better paying job, you would need to search for one and be able to sell yourself more effectively. It’s not an easy thing to accomplish but it’s not impossible either.

Starting a business is much more difficult. There’s a greater risk for failure. But if you are determined to do it, you’d better think of ways to make yourself ready for it. Investing in yourself by undergoing trainings is a good start. If you’re serious about it, there are good government-sponsored trainings available.

Trainings for Entrepreneurs

I know of two trusted institutions that have training schedules posted on their websites that may interest those whose minds are made up for business. They are the Technology Resource Center (TRC) of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) and the University of the Philippines (UP) Institute for Small-Scale Industries (ISSI). I believe their offerings are practical and useful to those who want to start up a business.

You can follow the link for the TRC website which will give you the schedule of the trainings they offer with corresponding fees. You may want to check that out now for a quick glance of the list of courses offered for this month of September.

These set of trainings mostly deal with the operations of a particular business. So if you have a plan for a specific type of business but don’t know how to work it and it happens to be one of the training topics, why not attend the training sessions to increase your knowledge? This will give you information to avoid the common pitfalls and decrease the things you needed to learn on the job. In other words, failure risk will decrease significantly.

When you go to the UP ISSI website you’ll also find the schedule of their trainings for the rest of 2012. Their trainings are more general in nature than those offered by TRC. Trainings such as Creative Selling Techniques, Total Quality Management and Start Your Own Business are particularly appealing.

For anyone who wants to start a business, knowing how to sell is critically important. Of course the quality of the products and services is also critical but if you can’t sell any of them, it’s good for nothing. So it makes sense to aim at acquiring good selling skills before you start any of your business ventures.

Making the Trainings Count

If you’ve not realized how difficult it is to succeed in business, you’d wrongly expect that trainings alone will guarantee your success. These trainings are definitely not a sure-fire formula for business success.

More of the things entrepreneurs need to learn, they will learn on the job. Successful businessmen are problem-solvers. They will encounter problems (for sure) and the important thing is to know how to react appropriately to solve these problems. That’s a learning process in itself.

Of course, those who succeeded will tell us that you don’t have to have complete information or skills set before starting a business. That’s because if you wait for that time to come, it will never arrive. There are always more things to learn and more skills to develop as you go along.

But readiness should not be taken for granted either. Trainings have their part but it’s not everything. It’s never the secret sauce but it gives you a head start every aspiring entrepreneur would pay to have.

Photo Credit: Joseph A Ferris III (Creative Commons)

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