“Success is when your wife loves you and trusts you, your children respect you and admire you, your peers respond positively to your influence and the world knows you have left it a better place today than when you first entered it.” -Francis Kong (Angelpreneur, esteemed motivational speaker and author)
In my columns, I always mention the importance of giving back as part of success. An entrepreneur’s journey does not end with success. He must continue to think and act on how he can help others reach their dreams and achieve success.
Since the launch of our Negosems (Negosyo Seminars), we have benefitted over 13,000 Filipinos nationwide. All of them have made their own small steps in reaching their dream through entrepreneurship. It is fulfilling to know that we have become part of their journey by means of negosyo mentorship.
Kapampangans took advantage of the one-day free Negosem
Our Angelpreneurs, who serve as the mentors in the Negosems, are often asked why they have decided to join the advocacy and share their time, expertise and wisdom through their lectures.
“It gives me a deep sense of satisfaction to see in the eyes of those who attend the Negosems the hope that entrepreneurship will change their lives for the better,” shared Angelpreneur Reuel Virtucio. “Having been a teacher of entrepreneurship for the last 16 years, I have seen how effective entrepreneurship has been in transforming the lives of those who practice it, especially for those who have less in life. Entrepreneurship, if practiced well, provides an opportunity for freedom from poverty. I have been a personal witness several times over how those with a low sense of self-worth are transformed into confident leaders & masters of their own fate through entrepreneurship.”
Another Angelpreneur, Ed Pilapil, share the same philosophy with Go Negosyo. “I have always believed that one of the best ways to build this country is by developing more entrepreneurs. The Negosems provide a solid overview of the basics in having a business. These FREE seminars are just fantastic for our countrymen. It is a form of nation-building.” Sharing his expertise to the people through the Negosems gives him an irreplaceable feeling. “Knowing that I was able to contribute in their learning even in little ways means a lot to me. I feel that I want to give more. It is just right to help our countrymen especially those who cannot afford expensive seminar fees,” relayed Ed.
Angelpreneur Ardy Roberto also imparts similar thoughts. “Every ‘maturing’ entrepreneur who has experienced some level of success will reach the point of wanting to give back. Joining Go Negosyo was a natural venue for me to give back and share the lessons (including mistakes and failures) in entrepreneurship that my wife and I have been blessed with in growing Salt & Light Ventures.” Ardy also values his experiences in our Negosems. “In Pampanga, a woman stood up at the end of the Negosem to give her feedback and thanks to the Angelpreneurs who presented. Then she started crying how the talks were such a blessing to her. She felt that God had led her to come to the Negosem at the most trying phase in her life. Moments like that make the traveling and time invested in others much worth it. I feel grateful to be part of the Go Negosyo movement to help people get out of poverty.”
Louie Gutierrez, Silverworks “With Go Negosyo I am able to share my talents and at the same time learn from others.” –Louie Gutierrez, Silverworks
"I joined Go Negosyo because I want to open the minds of entrepreneurs in the promise of having an Internet business where you can earn passive income online while having the freedom to do what you want without being tied down into a brick and mortar business.” –Anton Diaz, Our Awesome Plannet8
“Joining Go Negosyo is one way of saying thank you to those who helped us start as entrepreneurs and paying tribute to those who have inspired us when we were starting.” –Prudencio Garcia, Mekeni
Last June, we conducted our 20th Negosem in Lubao Pampanga. That was the last of our first run of Negosems with the Department of Trade and Industry. Former President and now-Congresswoman Gloria Macapagal Arroyo also graced the Negosem. It was studded with our entrepreneur advocates and of course our Angelpreneurs. Aside from the overwhelming support of guests and participation of the Kapampangans, one more thing that made this Negosem special was the “crying lady”.
Marina Lawrence was one of the attendees of the Pampanga Negosem. Since she really wanted to go into entrepreneurship, she lined up early in the morning at the registration. She took down notes and listened intently to every speaker (so did every Kapampangan in the venue).
Negosem Participant Marina Lawrence fought back her tears, as she expresses her gratitude to Go Negosyo
By the end of the day, we opened the floor to the participants for feedback. When it was Marina who took the microphone and started to say her thanks, tears started welling up in her eyes. As she fought her tears, she talked about the lessons she learned from the Negosem. Marina was very thankful for the opportunity. Above all the lessons on the how-to part, she was thankful the most about the newfound hope. She said that she further realized the importance of being optimistic in entrepreneurship and in life, no matter how hard things had been for her.
We were able to sit down with Marina after the Negosem. When asked how was her experience, “Maganda. Hindi ko naman afford na pag-aralin ang sarili ko sa mga seminar na katulad nito. I want to boost my ability siyempre. Gusto kong mapalibutan ng positive energy at ma-boost ang kaalaman ko sa mga ganitong bagay,” she said.
Marina is a single mother raising a son. “Ang laki ng ambisyon ng anak ko. Gusto niyang maging piloto. Tapos dati, gusto niyang magmay-ari ng private plane, hanggang sa ginusto niya ng passenger plane, hanggang sa gusto na niya ng airline. Sabi ko sa kanya, ‘Sige anak, you dream’. Siyempre, susuportahan ko siya sa kahit anong gusto nya.” The future of her son is the main reason that keeps her going.
Marina used to enjoy the luxuries of a wealthy life with a British National husband. She admits that she wasn’t born and raised rich, so when she had the opportunity to live her “dream life” she did nothing else but to enjoy. All the enjoyment came to an end when her husband left her, leaving her with nothing. It was a huge blow for Marina and the first thing she thought of was her son. “Paano ko siya pag-aaralin? Bumagsak lahat. Nasubukan ko nang maglako ng kung anu-ano. Hindi ko alam kung saan uli ako magsisimula at kung saan ko pupulutin ang sarili ko,” shared Marina. She slowly found her way through a small home-based baking business.
Presently, Marina’s pride is the cakes and cookies that she makes from her own recipes. “Kailangan kong mag-isip kung anong gagawin ko kasi ayokong manghingi,” she said. Her failure in life made her a different person, someone who is more optimistic and persevering.
Living one day at a time, Marina is dedicated in pursuing entrepreneurship. She is now thinking of ways on how to improve her home-based baking business. “Dati, palagi kong iniisip na palaging pera ang kailangan ko para makapag-negosyo. Sa Negosem, na-realize ko na hindi pera ang unang kailangan. Magisismula ka sa sarili mo,” she said.
Marina is also under the close mentorship of Go Negosyo, as we have already had one session with her and gave advice to level up her business model. We are now challenging her to focus on her expertise, which is to produce the best banana loaf in town with good packaging, strong branding and clear positioning. We look forward to how she will be developing her business, of course with the help of the Go Negosyo mentors.
Marina is only one among the 13,000 who were touched by Go Negosyo and our Angelpreneurs. In this advocacy, there is nothing more fulfilling for us than knowing how we have touched the lives of others and how we have contributed to their journey towards success. After all, according to Francis Kong we become the best that we can be by “working harder on ourselves, having a great personal growth and development program and then giving it away in terms of love and service for others.”