The Eagles that Fly

In the past columns I have stated that the price of oil and commodities will drop, and all of these are cyclical. Likewise, they have a correlation to the strength of the dollar.

This week we have seen oil dropping now to USD113 levels from a high of USD146, and commodities have come down a lot. I go back to PGMA’s speech in the SONA and the rationale why we should not adjust the vat on oil. High gasoline prices due to high crude oil price will force a lifestyle change that will reduce demand for oil products, while the situation leads to greater investments in alternative fuels. This will even push for the implementation of more efficient mass transport systems that will entice people not to use their cars to save gas and instead use the mass transport systems. The LRT extensions and Northrail projects will cut down travel time and cost to the provinces north of Manila.

The whole world adjusts to high prices by changing how they commute, either through the use of smaller cars or through mass transport. Likewise, a slowing world demand for oil can easily trigger a reaction in oil futures market, thus we see a quick reduction in oil price levels.

This leads to my last week’s column entitled “Why ducks quack and eagles fly”. This story is not mine, but was passed on to me through email. We received so much positive feedback on this column, which is quite encouraging. Hopefully, more and more Filipinos will see that those who succeed in life are those who don’t keep complaining about life, about issues with government, but those who do something about their own lives. It is all about taking control of one’s destiny and how one can really be the best in what he does as this winning attitude does lead to something great.

Last Friday – 08/08/08, I received an invitation to attend Vicki Belo’s masquerade event. It was her 18th anniversary. Vicki is a very supportive Go Negosyo advocate, who has been an inspiration to a lot of ‘would-be’ entrepreneurs. But, I had to beg off attending her event as I could not see myself wearing a masquerade costume. I will never hear the end of it from family and friends. But I congratulated Vicki for all her remarkable successes. I was told that the Friday’s event was also successful and not surprisingly star-studded with all the ‘who’s who’ in showbiz. We salute Vicki as she shares her achievements with other people, as she inspires and motivates a lot of aspiring entrepreneurs. She also launched the Ike and Nena Belo Foundation, named after her parents. Her foundation aims to help people with cleft palettes, burn victims, and other patients who truly need her help.

Meantime, the Gawad Kalinga event last Friday was also a huge success, where thousands of supporters attended the affair at the NBC tent. It was a gathering to launch “The Best for the Least” project. Tony Meloto and I have been working together in helping each other’s advocacy to move to greater heights, as we share the vision that Filipinos should not lose hope on a bright future for this country.

Tony and Mayor Freddie Tinga launched the GK Designer Village, where in the best architects were commissioned to do impressive designs for GK housing projects. Truly the “best for the least”, it was a great idea. Finally, we now see a mayor championing this cause. While Taguig has benefited from the boom of commercial residences and office condominiums, Freddie is making sure Taguig becomes a first class city with modern equipment for security. They have installed infrared cameras located all over the city. A public school that caters to the brightest kids of Taguig was also located in Mckinley Hills.

Likewise, Gov. Lray Villafuerte of Camarines Sur, a Go Negosyo trustee, is equally dynamic and a leader with a good vision as he put up the most number of GK villages in his home province Camarines Sur. A GK bed and breakfast is his latest project. Lray and his wife started a business called Lara’s Gifts and Decors, which is a big exporter of handicrafts and the like.

During Freddie’s speech, he talked about pagbabago ng pag-isisip – having a positive outlook and taking control of one’s destiny. These are the same principles why I started Go Negosyo with fellow entrepreneurs. The duck and eagle story basically shows that we need more eagles in this country. We need more people who see solutions to problems and find opportunities in crisis. I am a La Sallite, but somehow I see the relevance of keeping our school away from politics and issues. While I love my school – La Salle, where I studied from grade school to college, I do not agree that the new set of brothers should be seen in events which are political in nature. We need a country of eagles who will fly.

Go Negosyo, Gawad Kalinga and enterprising local government officials who want to see a better negosyo climate and housing for the poor in there area is what will bring a Pagbabago. As my father, Joecon, also advocated years ago, we should have an ‘isip-agila‘.

We have received overwhelming response from readers of last week’s column. Here are some of their comments:

“Halu.Tnx 4 sharing a gr8 story re ducks and eagle. M sure Filipinos öne day cn hav dat perspectiv by ur cnsistent advocacy then we cn make our country gr8! mor power!” 

“Thank u so much 4 d article. Dis was d sermon of Bishop Mercado 2 wks ago. I hope d opposions n d leftist read ur column again thank u”

“I have read ur column today bout ducks and eagles and i am so hapy and very much inspired continue sharing this and soon ther wil be mor wally in this world. Like me and u. Godbless! Keep going and keep on inspiring people! Jon”

“ur artcle 2day s truly inspiring n tru. wish mre filipinos cud b lyk eagles! … i alwys luk 4wrd 2 readng ur artcl evryday. kudos! – ceny”

“Thank you sir Joey for sharing “While ducks quack and eagles fly” column of yours today. It is a positive outlook and eagle soaring up high a very encouraging story worthy of emulation! Sir JOEY your entrepreneurial skills and success of your endeavors as entrepreneur is a good example that inspire people to Go Negosyo plus other successful individual featured and not yet featured in your very nice column in the STAR. Before during my elementary days in school “Work is the core of the curriculum” that was in the 70’s i supposed now “Negosyo” must be the core of the curriculum in schools! Salamat po! I always follow your column and i am already inspired and made mine ginagmay(a little bit) lang muna.”

“Sir Im real estate agent ur colum makes m realize not 2 b like a duck but b an eagle dat fly tnx now Im flying HIGH”

“Hi Mr Concepcion. Dis is chickie locsin of KPMG. Ur col 2day ws truly inspirng. U r doing more good than u know!”

“Great column today! I agree that people should look at the problems as great opportunities… Having to look at the country w glasses half full should always be the case. The ducks and the eagles story is very simple and easy to remembr therefore easy to share. Have a great day! Thanks for inspiring me today! –rochee”

“Thanks for the wonderful story.” -Bryan Villaroman

* * * * *

As we continue to spread positive entrepreneurial attitude, we completed our third Teen Negosyo event, with the Department of Education. Its Center for Education and Co-Curricular Affairs Director Joey Pelaez and his team, again, tirelessly gathered the youth from all over the Philippines. About 1,500 high school students and educators filled the Teachers Camp in Baguio City from July 26 to 30, to take advantage of the good program and expo we have prepared with our partners.

We thank the Department of Trade and Industry – Philippine Trade Training Center, The Master’s Lighthouse Foundation, Entrepreneurs School of Asia, our Go Negosyo advocates who unselfishly shared their expertise: Dean Francisco Lapid, Ping Sotto, Palou Abustan, Chris Tan, Arlene Onte, Dennis Balajadia, Paulo Tibig, Michelle Asence, Eric Papa, Narda Capuyan, Alvin Tan, Lloyd Luna, Ray Gapuz, Crystalle Henares, Pocholo Gonzales and Pia Gutierrez. Thanks to DepEd Undersecretary Ramon Bacani, Atty. Buboy Sotto, DTI – PTTC’s Beth Manuel and Joey Urmeneta, DTI-CAR Division Chief Remy Magno, and Anthony Pangilinan.

One of the Ten Outstanding Students of the Philippines, Richardson Navor, an Accountancy – Magna Cum Laude fresh graduate from the University of the East, shared his inspirational story. We also recognized Most Inspiring CAR Entrepreneurs with sustainable Negosyos despite their extreme challenges earlier in life. Awardees were endorsed by the Department of Trade and Industry CAR Director Carmelita Usman, Department of Agriculture USec Doy Salacup, Baguio-Benguet Community Credit Cooperative, and Jaime V. Ongpin Foundation.