I wouldn’t worry so much about money management, as I am specializing in finance, I am quite confident in budgeting, investing as well as my spending. Moreover, I used to operate an online shop when I was in high school. It was a Korean fashions store that mainly targeting customers in Hong Kong. Therefore, I have experienced in handling credit and the role of cash flow management, since I had to calculate my net cash flow to make sure my business was in a healthy financial condition. I am also confident in business operations and sales & marketing operations. Since I needed to order the apparel from the Korean suppliers, and I always needed to take orders and promote my store and my products to others. I took the advantages of social media such as the forum, Facebook and Instagram to post advertisements and used worth of mouth to create a good reputation, so I valued good customer service so much. Even though I started an online shop in my high school time, I do not have an actual and solid knowledge about setting up a business, like choosing a location, obtaining permits/licenses or choosing the type of ownership. I do not have so much experience about managing people, as I did not hire anyone in my previous online shop business. However, I have experience in training other co-workers, as I used to work as a part-time job in the cashier position in a restaurant and I have trained 3 junior cashiers to ensure smooth operation.
The results that I mostly got do fall in the normal range for people that operating their own businesses except innovation and self-esteem, which I think it matches the way I see myself. In terms of self-esteem, I am not sure if this score indicating that I have a high self-esteem or low self-esteem? I always wonder myself if I have an unhealthy self-esteem. I do not always feel confident or comfortable in networking events, however, I would like to expand my network by knowing more people but I also really care about how others think of me; I always compare myself to others; I always try to please everyone, to make them happy; I always need to hear others’ opinion when making the final decision; But conversely, I like accepting challenges and love trying new things. So having a healthy self-esteem is something I should work on and it takes time, effort and work.
It is also no doubt that my innovation score would be fall under the normal range, as I know myself I am not a creative person who can always think of a new and unique way to solve the problem. However, if I can come up with an innovative idea, I would love to challenge myself to do it even others might have doubts or wouldn’t look good about the project.
My top 4 out of 5 stressors involve money and uncertainty, which I do not have the control with. It is no doubt that uncertainty is an essential part in the entrepreneurs’ life, but I believe I will learn how to deal with this stress as I go through the learning process, or even more I may know how to respond quickly with uncertainty in the future. As for now, it will be more challenging for me if I could not predict what the outcome is. The last one public speaking might fall out in the comparison; it is more likely about my personality and skill.
I always set a high expectation for myself and really care about how others think of me, so sometimes when I do not meet their expectations, I will become frustrated and stressful. This is something I should focus on as it will not only affect my business performance, but also my mental-health problem. Same as my fear of doing public speaking, I know good communication is an essential skill for every successful entrepreneur, and they should not be able to afraid speaking in public, as they have to pitch their ideas to investors, tell their stories to employees and make presentations in front of prospects etc. Therefore, I should overcome these nerves and practice more and more in my daily life, and I hope this can be improved through time and practices.
I value family time so much, so experiencing freedom is priceless as I can be there for my family while earning profit. As I mentioned, I started an online shop when I was in high school, selling Korean fashion. At that time, most of my classmates went to find a part-time job which they usually worked in the restaurants or convenience stores. I could follow their paths too but I did not, as I wanted to have flexible working hours, wouldn’t have to report to managers or other people and I could work at home (and I really do like working at home and staying with my family) etc. In the future for how I build my business, I will continue using my previous strategies, such as being organized, making timetable and making sure I have communicated well to other employees or partners to make sure the business operation is running smoothly.
Wealth is an important factor that motivates me a lot. I want to create a business that is profitable and I don’t have to worry about the financial burden and being able to feed my family well. I place impact at the second last does not mean I do not want to help people and improve their lives, but because I believe myself does not have the ability to come up with an innovative idea or product to be a pioneer in my business’s industry. Actually, it takes me a while to think about the order between wealth and impact. I remembered I read an article and the writer said do not focus on how much profit you can earn but on how you can improve people lives by adding value. Because when you build trust when you add value, and when you help people without expecting anything for return, you are building the positive and trustful relationship between them. I may start to focus on impact when my business is starting to grow or already in a mature stage.
Control comes at the last, because I am not that type of “controller”. For example, when it comes to making a decision, I do not mind having other partners or investors involve in the decision-making process, and do not mind they are the one who will make the final decision as long as the decision is good for the company. I like to hear others’ recommendations and advise when making decisions. If in the situation that I have to quit the company or give up the CEO position in an exchange for freedom and wealth, I would do so. Then I may use that money to start another new business.
In the Founder’s Dilemma Survey, I chose all choice 2. I choose wealth over control is because I prefer building greater financial increase and having lesser control, which is called a “Rich” outcome. It also matched my entrepreneur motives’ ranking, as I ranked control as last.
I want to give myself, my family a financial security. Rather receiving a regular pay-cheque, I would focus more on the future growth or future value of my business and I would prefer the company to expand quicker rather than in a stable condition.
Intellectual risk and physical risk are my top rate ranking. That means I am willing to learn & do and try out new things (if I have the idea). My business might fail, my product might not be attractive in the industry, my ideas might be dismissed, but if I can think of an innovative business idea, I would definitely love to try it and take out what I learn throughout the process.
My lowest rate ranking is my social risk, which is something I feel not comfortable with. More practices are needed to be done in order to have improvements. Convince myself to participate more in the networking events and do more researches beforehand to make myself more professional and convincing.
In terms of financial, I tend to avoid using my parents’ retirement savings as a startup fund even if they are willing to give me. I value my family relationship so much, and I don’t want to ruin this relationship if I am not able to return it in the worst circumstance. Moreover, if I have to invest in an uncertain venture, I should get prepared for the worst case and always focus on the long term. I should be caution on my financial performance, such as by checking how much net profit I earn each month and also should estimate how long it can last if my income run low in a worst-case scenario.
My overall risk-taking profile indicates that I am willing to take the risks in physical, intellectual and cultural sectors, and this fits me quite well in reality. The plenty of sporting blood enables me to take a long shot, willing to make the first move. I always say to myself, I am not a creative person, but that doesn’t mean I do not like innovation. If I can come up with a new and innovative business idea, I would not hesitate to finish it even though many people say negatively about my idea; I would work on long hours to prove I can. If my business can expand to globalize or international, I would be excited I have this opportunity to expand my business but I will be careful and cautious about the foreign culture and will do more research before launching my business over there.
According to Ali Montag from CNBC, it shows the facts that Jack Ma used to apply 30 jobs in his hometown, but everyone rejected him. Even the job in KFC: there were 24 people applied for a job in KFC, 23 were selected except Jack Ma. He also applied 10 times to Harvard Business School and got rejected. Can you imagine this person is Jack Ma? I was so surprised by his failures that he faced and he never gave up, he kept trying and finally becomes a successful entrepreneur. When he thought of the rejections that he faced, he said those memories were painful, but this is what he said “If you cannot get used to failure — just like a boxer — if you can’t get used to [being] hit, how can you win?” If I faced the number of rejections like him, I probably would not have any confidence anymore.
Taobao is the world’s biggest e-commerce website created by Jack Ma. He is not the first one created the e-commerce web, at that time, eBay and Amazon have already launched. However, he is able to use their ideas and perform it in a new way, which now becomes the leader in the industry.
I admire Bill Gates because he is humble considering his wealth and he does a lot of charities donations compared to other successful entrepreneurs.
Both of them are really brilliant, generous, never give up when facing failures and want to improve the communities. I really wanted to share a story about how they improve the community.