A different kind of altruism

We are about to end the year 2010. I can’t that believe I have been writing a column in the PhilStar for five years now, which is equivalent to more or less 200 columns. I do get compliments from readers who follow what I write. Sometimes, I find myself wondering how I end up with the topics I discuss.

The nature of my role in the Go Negosyo advocacy brings me to encounter success stories that give me the fuel to continue in everything that I do. For every column that I write, I always hope that it inspires someone out there to become an entrepreneur or a Mr. Mang Inasal someday.

Despite my role in the PGMA administration in helping promote entrepreneurship, I am glad that as of today, the Department of Trade and Industry has adopted and continued the Go Negosyo theme. Go Negosyo is a non-government organization. It is a private sector advocacy, which was embraced by the previous administration and has been continuously supported by the present administration. It takes many years to build a brand. If we are to inculcate entrepreneurship in the minds of our youth, the joint efforts of the private sectors and the government for awareness programs must continue.

A good friend of mine called me the other day. He was happy to tell me that his daughter has started her own business, which is doing well, and credits Go Negosyo for encouraging her to get into business. The movement of Go Negosyo is infectious. With the present success of our advocacy, we can still definitely say that this is just the beginning.

I see a change in many sectors today. Groups that give seminars have started to slant towards the negosyo angle. One good example is Josiah Go’s noble project called Day 8, which is doing very well. We have agreed to do a Go Negosyo series on entrepreneurial marketing. We will be partnering with entrepreneurship professors who are our Go Negosyo Angelpreneurs. They will be teaching and mentoring aspiring and young entrepreneurs as part of their own advocacies in giving back.

In a cocktail hosted by Babes Romuldez, Noel Onate (who is also an entrepreneur) asked me the question if Go Negosyo was like the PCCI or Makati Business Club. I told him that we are not a club. We don’t have meetings like these groups or the Rotary.

We have more than 600 Go Negosyo entrepreneur-advocates from all over the Philippines. They participate in the numerous events and programs that we prepare. They share their stories in forums and they mentor aspiring or micro and small entrepreneurs. Unlike the other groups that mentor each other through membership, we reach out to those who need mentorship in the different sectors and communities. Our Go Negosyo entrepreneurs also give time to represent the advocacy in other events, gatherings, TV shows, among others. We stay in touch with them through our Facebook, weekly newsletters, and gatherings. We keep all of them posted with our upcoming programs and projects.

We would like to congratulate two Go Negosyo entrepreneur advocates who were recipients of the Agora Awards last night. Congratulations to Richard Sanz of Bibingkinitan and Justin Uy of Profood International Corp. Richard was also recognized this year as one of our Go Negosyo Inspiring Young Entrepreneurs. Justin Uy is also one of our Go Negosyo trustees. In his speech, he credited Go Negosyo for inspiring him and convincing him to come out and share his success story. Our very own RFM Corporation also received the Agora award for Export Marketing. Our export is headed by Imee Madarang. She is one of those who helped me when Go Negosyo was just starting.

The private sector and many large corporations like PLDT, Smart, BPI and their competitors have started to embrace and bank on the concept of negosyo or entrepreneurship into their marketing campaign. They see the opportunity in enabling many of the MSMEs with tools that will help them succeed.

While helping the micro and small negosyantes is an altruistic effort, it is not considered a dole out. We are teaching and mentoring people on how to fish. We need more of our big brothers to join in and support the efforts of Go Negosyo, as the task involved is huge. With a YES attitude, we will surely infect this nation to be finally more entrepreneurial rather than political.

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Go Negosyo is also proud to congratulate another Inspiring Young Entrepreneur awardee, Reese Fernandez. She was recently recognized as one of the Ten Outstanding Women in the Nation’s Service (TOWNS) Awardee – the youngest to receive the award at 25 years old.

We would also like to invite all aspiring entrepreneurs, especially students and youth groups, to the AIESEC Negosyo Convergence 2011 on January 22, 2011 at the Philippine Trade Training Center, Pasay City. This is in partnership with the young and dynamic group of AISEC Philippines. Learn from this country’s negosyo mentors and gurus as they share their entrepreneurial journeys and expertise. This is your chance to meet and interact with like-minded individuals who share the same passion and dream of becoming successful entrepreneurs. For inquiries, you may contact 433-7817 (AIESEC) or 637-9229 (Go Negosyo), or visit www.aiesec.org/philippines or www.gonegosyo.net. Be empowered! Be a negosyo expert!