While On A Hunt For A Co-Working Space In India, This Entrepreneur Ended Up Creating One Himself

Real estate startups picked up late but looks like they are here to stay with co-working offices becoming most sought after workspaces in Indian metros where new startups are created every day.
When Shesh Rao Paplikar was hunting for office-space for a New York startup , where he worked as the chief technology officer, he sensed the need of a proper, functioning co-working space in India. Shesh, who had spent close to a decade abroad, was used to very quality of co-working spaces.  Despite a rigorous hunting process, Shesh could only fetch a very mediocre working space, where he himself as a CTO had to put in a lot of effort – from fixing the Wi-Fi, calling technicians and spending hours over the IVRs!
Shesh, who by then was contemplating the idea of starting something all by himself in the tech startup space, he found it difficult to find something that matched his expectations. This tussle inspired him to create a co-working space of his own, which he christened as the BHIVE Workspace.

Meeting his co-founder
Shesh and his co-founder Ravindra M.K were high-school classmates back in Mysore. Both of them go back in time where they had tried to give entrepreneurship a shot in 2003 during the final year of engineering. Though that venture failed to take shape, Shesh and Ravindran kept in touch with each other.
When Shesh moved back to India, Ravindran was initially helping Shesh put things together  for BHIVE and eventually decided to quit his SAP job and join BHIVE.
The Bengaluru-based co-working space, which raised $1 million in funds from Blume Ventures last week, operates across 4 locations in India’s Silicon Valley Bengaluru. Launched in 2014, the workspace is now catering to over 150+ ventures and the company plans to expand into cities outside in Bengaluru.
Shesh sees the potential of the co-working space domain to become a billion dollar market. He expects BHIVE to churn revenue of $70 million annual revenue in the next two years.
Interaction with investors
Through several events that are conducted by the workspace the founders are given a chance to interact with investors and mentors.  Elaborating on what investors visiting the space generally look for in a startup Shesh said, “Investors generally look for the quality of a team, product market fit and long-term revenue potential of the company.”
Shesh said that he has seen an exponential increase in the confidence level amongst startups.  “Indian startup ecosystem has matured over the last three years and I see a lot more experienced people entering this field these days,” he added. He has also witnessed the entry of entrepreneurs, who were earlier working abroad, returning to India to set up something of their own.
He believes that there is a lot of capital available today, as people who were investing in real estate and other industries are now turning angels for startups.
Successful BEES !
Greenbooks was the first company that enrolled themselves to the workspace. Emphasising on workspace’s checklist for enrolment, Shesh said, “We look for companies which are financially stable who can afford the basic enrolment fee.” However, considering early stage startups lack financial stability, there are special passes such as weekend offers, etc that enable these companies afford the workspace. Some of the biggest success stories that have emerged from this space include Roadrunnr, LetsService and Springboard, to name a few.
With New York-based office rental startup WeWork gearing for their India debut, there has been a lot of chatter around the sustainability of Indian workspaces. However, Shesh says he BHIVE is ready to compete with WeWork as we have a better understanding of the market!


4 Attributes That Set Entrepreneurs Apart From Employees

“What do you do for a living?”
“I’m an entrepreneur.”
The answer has a sexy ring to it. Plus, there’s a hint of mystery — as if you possess a quality others don’t. You’ve shifted into an entirely different gear that sets you apart. Perhaps there’s a little ego involved in wanting to take on the identity of an entrepreneur.

More than any of those, though, is the freedom communicated by the word. Your status as an entrepreneur signals to others that you’re willing to take risks, play by your own rules and create a better life for yourself while bringing something new to the marketplace.
The word also carries an inherent challenge. It’s easy to say you’re an entrepreneur but much more difficult to become one. Not long ago, I addressed an audience of future entrepreneurs. The idea of designing and launching their own businesses filled them with hope and excitement.
I asked, “How many of you would love for me to show you, step-by-step, how to start your own business?” Almost every hand shot up.
I had a follow-up question: “How many would like to look over my shoulder and work through the process?” Almost every hand shot up.
I wasn’t done yet. “How many of you would like for me to look over your shoulder and tell you exactly what to do?” I asked. Almost every hand shot up, and a few people even stood and clapped.
Leaning to the edge of the stage, I whispered, “That’s called an employee.”
I didn’t mean it to be rude or condescending. I said it because I remembered the feeling of wanting to start my business but not being ready to take on the full risks. I wanted someone to tell me what to do and how to do it so it wouldn’t be my fault if something went wrong. I wanted someone to tell me which tasks to perform without my having to decide. In a perfect world, I’d still get to own the company and make money. In truth, I wanted to be an entrepreneur but still have the security of an employee.
It doesn’t work that way, and it’s dangerous to assume it can. Here are four signs you’re an employee and not an entrepreneur — yet.
1. Directions over decisions.
Employees receive directions. When they’re hired, they get a job description that tells them when to show up and what it takes to do their work.
Entrepreneurs design their roles and decide which directives to pursue. They show up all the time. And they determine not only their own tasks, but the steps for everyone in the company.
2. Rewards over risks.
Employees want guaranteed checks. They want to do their jobs and get paid for performing their duties without wondering about income.
Entrepreneurs assume the risk of not getting paid at times to ensure that others are compensated for their efforts.
3. Security over shifting.
Employees take jobs that provide benefits and pay enough to cover household expenses. They want to get paid when they take time off. They like knowing they work for a strong company and having the assurance they can stay as long as they want, with no thought to downturns. 
Entrepreneurs know “steady” might be a short-term concept. They understand shifts in the marketplace or economy could require rapid response. Many thrive on these inevitable changes because they’re forced to stay sharp and aware of all business facets. 
4. Responsive over responsibility.
Employees respond to the assignment or workload. If something goes wrong, they are quick to point to another part of the company to place blame. Their initial reaction often is to explain why the negative result couldn’t be their fault. 
Entrepreneurs take responsibility and the blame. It’s not fun. It’s painful and even embarrassing at times. When I had to take out a loan to pay my employees because I completely miscalculated revenue, I wanted to become an employee. The fact is, entrepreneurs are responsible because they helm the ship.
If you’re considering the move from employee to entrepreneur, you owe it to yourself and your business idea to weigh your wants against these four signs. Trying to bring your employee mindset to your new job as an entrepreneur will have a devastating effect on your success.


Entrepreneurship And Business Skills

Question 1
I consider an entrepreneurial individual to be a person that exercises initiative through organizing a venture with the aim of taking benefit of the opportunity presented. In addition, this individual is not afraid to make decisions regarding their venture and always accepts full responsibility of the outcome that results from their decisions (Caird, 1990). Referring to myself as entrepreneurial means I do not just wait to be given directions on my tasks but rather I set out to look for information that other people do not have and I proceed to use it appropriately. I can fit in any department because I focus my attention on the set goals, strive to learn quickly enough and develop new ideas.
My ideas, energy, and vision would remain theoretical until I get that opportunity to practice what I do best. Brockhaus regards the entrepreneur’s dedication, talent and commitment to be valuable traits that would go to waste if the individual lacks the necessary resources, an equally talented team, and the opportunity to put their ideas into practice (Brockhaus, 1982). Once the opportunity presents itself, the entrepreneur is always prepared to utilize it appropriately.

Whenever I was engaged in a group project, I always carried out my research thoroughly, focused all my efforts on the given assignment, and coordinated my group members with the aim of ensuring the project was performed in the most organized manner possible. My group members always relied on me because I am always accountable for the decision I make regarding the task at hand. However, often the decision I made turned out correct because prior to making the decision, I prefer to gather the necessary information, and then proceed to use it appropriately. In a diner that I used to work part-time in while in school, I recommended having a special dish for the customers on a particular day every week. This suggestion resulted from an observation that I had made whereby the customers often had a specific meal they consumed frequently but on occasion they preferred a change. On this occasion, I would recommend the alternative meal. I figured that a special dish once every week would create that alternative meal option. The idea worked amazingly and every Wednesdays when the special dish was offered, the diner would always be full.
My entrepreneurial skills would be beneficial to the company because I place priority on achieving the set goal therefore every task assigned to me would always be performed in an exemplary manner. Because I am responsible and accountable, supervision would not be required because I never waste my time while working and instead I focus all my efforts on achieving my goal. I am willing to take risks because I consider the risky, different, or even controversial things to have an underlying opportunity that is mostly unexploited (Caird, 1990). The entrepreneur does not just look at the idea and wait for directions on how to proceed but rather develops a plan of action which will create a road map which will raise the venture from the idea stage and set in on the course of growth and materialization (Gunther and MacMillan, 2000). The position I would be assigned would present me with the necessary resources, technology and capability to focus on achieving the goals of the company.
The conclusions that I come to in the Company would be reliable since I conduct thorough researches and make decisions based on comprehensive information. The Company would therefore not have to worry about reckless decisions or question the validity of my recommendations and strategies.
Question 2
Every successful individual often has a story to tell regarding the challenges and obstacles that they had to overcome on their long road to success (Hauser, 2012). The biggest obstacle that I have had to face is the negative traits that I posses. However, over time I have come to the conclusion that what one lacks on one side, they compensate for it on the other. I am for instance a poor networker. The network of contacts that I started off with was very narrow and since I am not so good at connecting with people, the situation did not get any better. What I lacked in network skills, I made up for in commitment and determination. The important thing is to match the strength that compensates for your weakness and apply it (Hauser, 2012). Although, I could not connect with people easily, I could rely on myself to get the job done. The feeling that I was an ‘outsider’ reduced my reliance on other people’s help and I immersed myself in the mission that I worked towards. Failure was not a letdown but rather an opportunity to learn and avoid a similar mistake in the future. As a result of my commitment and determination, prospective partners sought me and my network grew not because I was good at connecting with other people but because of my drive to succeed that appealed to them.
It is important to find one’s weaknesses and strengths followed by strategies to turn the weaknesses around. Every business is an entire system that contains numerous tasks which cannot be accomplished by a single individual no matter how strong that individual is. As a result, the best strategy is to focus an individual’s energy on those areas that they are strong therefore compensating for the weaknesses (Collins and Lazier, 1995).
I applied the recommended strategy by Collins and Lazier in my weakness regarding poor communication skills by maximizing on my ability to think of the big picture. Although I could not persuade people to support my views, ideas and business as a whole, I could see the patterns and relationships in the environment I traded in. These patterns and relationships made me an excellent predictor of market as well as competitor moves. As a result, I did not have to persuade anyone to follow my lead, adopt my ideas, or engage in transactions with me because the statistics talked on my behalf. The consistent positive results made others to gain confidence in me.
The other trait that disadvantaged me was my strong action orientation that caused me to sometimes desire to act prior to comprehensive contemplation. There are several occasions that my ventures failed resulting from my immediate actions that were based on incomplete information. These ventures failed but I did not give up on them and instead kept on trying until they succeeded. My strong action orientation was my weakness but the motivation to excel is the strength that avoided my downfall. Every time I went into a venture because I felt the need to act, my goal and result orientation pushed me until the goal was achieved. I overcame my weaknesses through the strengths that compensated for what I lacked. I would recommend such an approach to every individual who desires to overcome or turn their weaknesses into strengths.
Question 3
I would choose the role of either an organizer or a moderator. Often the group is split over which is the right and the wrong approach to an activity or task (Adeak, 2010). Every individual in the group seems to think that their idea, suggestion, or plan is the correct one. However, the best plan, strategy, and organization come from extensive preparation, assessment, and consideration. I prioritize these three elements because I do not like to undertake a task while unprepared and I set my mind to achieving the goal therefore the approach used, the organization chosen and the strategy formulated all have to be centered on the goal. Since this is a group activity, achieving the goal is not only dependent on my effort but on each group member’s effort. It is therefore my responsibility to organize the team and ensure that the plan that I have formulated to achieve the goal is integrated into the whole team. Team organization is a critical component of long-term success of any business therefore ensuring the team’s procedures and plans are formulated and each team member is assigned a role that they will perform effectively would guarantee positive results (Collins and Lazier, 1995). A particular occasion that I played this role was in a research project on advertising where I divided the group into sub-groups so that every sub-group could research on a sub-topic which would then be followed by consolidation of all the sub-topics.
The role of a moderator would also be an appropriate role for me because I am impartial and maintain an open mind at all times. Through such an approach I believe the interests of every group member would be addressed therefore ensuring that no member is dissatisfied. One hurdle that often arises in group activities is the allocation of resources and resolution of internal disagreements (Adeak, 2010). I believe in fair treatment and therefore would ensure the resources are coordinated and allocated fairly. This step would also help reduce disagreements in the group. This quality is an indication that the moderator is an appropriate role for me.
The role that I would least play in a group is that of a critic. This is majorly because I choose to look at things positively whereas the critic searches for the flaw in order to expose it. A team needs to be motivated in order to perform well but criticism often dampens the motivation of the team (Adeak, 2010). This role is therefore not appropriate for me at all.
Brockhaus, R. H. (1982), The Psychology of the Entrepreneur. In Encyclopedia of Entrepreneurship , edited by Calvin A. Kent, Donald L. Sexton, and Karl H. Vesper, Prentice Hall, New Jersey.
Collins, J. C. and Lazier, W. C. (1995), Beyond Entrepreneurship: Turning Your Business into an Enduring Great Company, Prentice Hall, New Jersey.
Caird, S. (1990), What does it mean to be EnterprisingBritish Journal of Management, vol. 1, Issue 3, pp. 37–145.
Gunther, M., R. and MacMillan, I. (2000), The Entrepreneurial Mindset, Harvard Business School Press, Boston.
Hauser, A. (2012), How to Overcome Business Weaknesses, Resources for entrepreneurs, viewed May 2, 2012,
What is a Team Role StructureAdeak. 2010, viewed May 2, 2012,


Hope, Optimism and Resiliency: The Three Most Powerful Leadership Tools You Can Have As An Entrepreneur

Leaders have an arsenal of tools to throw at employees, markets, investors and other stakeholders. Which one should you choose? Which one pushes the organizations forward? Which one is self-propelling? Fear? Excitement? A study of leaders in high and established firms found that the traits of hope, optimism, and resiliency had a direct impact on transformational leadership, which directly impacted firm performance. A study of employees found that these three characteristics positively affected satisfaction and work happiness, but only hope and resilience impacted organizational commitment. So the question then arises: are these traits transferable from a leader to an employee? A 30-year review of studies indicated that the answer is yes, but one can also watch movies like Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room or The Wolf of Wall Street to know that that leads to spectacular downfalls.
which was tested in the early 1990s, finds that hope can play a dual role– working positively before the appearance of a problem, as well as after a problem has appeared. Hope impacts “pathways thinking,” the process that signals a person’s capabilities and will to find a route that will lead you to the goal. Simply said, it’s the faith that you can achieve your goal. And this can be reinforced by positive affirmation. Hopeful thinking leads to better divergent thinking (thinking out of the box, with higher quality ideas and more details). And we know startups need to be creative in finding solutions with low investment costs. Hope is what has in the youth of the Arab world and he shows this with his investments and projects in startups that disrupt markets. This has a multiplier effect attracting more investors and raising the confidence in the youth to be more entrepreneurial. Hope also seems to be a winner for leaders. A pity more leaders don’t use this trait. Keep in mind the premise of Obama’s 2008 campaign was “Hope” and “Change,” which was then followed by the 2012 campaign “Forward.” I can’t even remember this year’s election candidates’ promises– but I do know it involves lots of doom and gloom and mud slinging.
Next, take the leadership tool of optimism. As a leader, you can use strategic optimism, which is setting high expectations, feeling calm, and avoiding reflecting. Though research shows hope trumps optimism for performance, both are needed for satisfaction, which we know is critical for employee retention. Keep in mind that optimism should not be confused with the entrepreneurial tendency to expect positive results, even when such expectations are not justified rationally. Optimism is selling most of his stock to invest in his belief that Tesla and SpaceX had a role to play in the future. It is like his gamble to take a decision to buy Solar City when profits are still eluding him. Founded in 2011, is the first accelerator in Gaza, and since their inception, they have just launched 16 startups. It is one of the most difficult markets to work in, and their optimism for change is heartwarming. They have a wall of dreams where entrepreneurs post messages to the question “What would you do if you were not afraid?” Optimism is the ability to think beyond a war they have little control over. Recently, Gaza Sky Greeks co-launched with some 40 other companies targeted at PayPal to also allow transactions in Palestine, as PayPal works in the Israeli settlements of West Bank. This is trending on Twitter as #PayPal4Palestine. Optimism is the belief that despite the odds, you can make a difference.

But it’s important to note here that there is a fine line between managing hope and optimism, against the reality of a situation. Christopher Schroeder recently gave an interestingwhere he says, “You create a reality distortion field, and the power of your narrative is to be able to believe what you’re doing, get the people around you to believe what you’re doing, and to get employees passionately dedicated to work it. But there’s a very fine line between believing your own spin and taking a dispassionate view of what you’re doing, and not getting lost in your own narratives. You must find ways –without getting caught in 360 degrees of advice– to check those realities, because you can get trapped by naysayers who say it can’t happen, or it’s a bad idea. But on the other hand, you can believe in things so deeply and just sort of get trapped in believing in your own idea.”
Entrepreneurs need to gather experience (or hire more experienced people and listen) and take into account the changing environments around them. While optimists have lower stress levels and conflict, keep in mind that pessimists apparently have higher levels of performance and satisfaction and lower turnover intent, but this may be because they have more control measures. Remember, Elon Musk has a photographic memory! So read, take notes, document ideas, meetings, commitments and talk to others with relevant expertise in areas you are not yet fully in control of to get an informed 360 view. One last point, optimism is found to be useful provided the participants felt they could influence the outcomes. (!)
This brings me to the last factor, resiliency, which lies lower than hope and optimism in terms of importance, but it is still a critical factor. What is resiliency? It is the capacity for response to fast and possibly disruptive changes by resisting, absorbing, responding, even reinventing if required, to reduce the negative effects of that change. This is a trait that is valued in complex organizations like the military. As a leader and a founder of a startup, change is your constant companion and employees by nature will not like their routines, roles and targets to constantly evolve. said in his book, Flashes of Thought, “An easy life does not make men, nor does it build nations. Challenges make men, and it is these men who build nations.” Every entrepreneur is a nation builder and has the capacity to create an organization with revenues and employees larger than GDPs and populations of countries. How disruptive is that?
Resiliency is an everyday attitude. It does not always mean the challenges come from the external environment. Often the blow will come from within– a co-founder leaves, a key employee walks away with an account to a competitor or worse becomes one, an investor backs out on his/her promise, a product can’t live to its expectation, and a customer doesn’t pay. It could also be personal– for instance, your family, friends and health. Failure of ideas, projects and goals is a part of any startup history or a quintessential part of an entrepreneur’s journey; hence, the quality of resilience is much needed. The question is how do you embed it in an organization? The answer is surprisingly simple: storytelling, which is essentially finding time in your culture to share challenging situations (organizational and personal) that allow you to create a healthy culture of moving forward with openness.
This has many positive effects. First, narrations are psychologically comforting (like therapy) and will help you vent and get things off your mind so you can put the events behind, focus on key issues that need to occupy you time. Second, by relating stories, you can also look for learning moments and this will help in future strategy– there is something to be said about stories with a moral at the end. Third, they help others in similar situations as they can relate to your “story.” Fourth, they help others relate with you– you become more accessible (human), and this allows them to bond with you. For a small company, this maybe a vital part of creating but be sure what kind of culture you want to create and hence what kind of stories you want to share.
Of all the stories I have heard, I love this one the best. Ala’a Al Sallal loved to read and spent many hours in the school library and later browsing on the internet. His first business idea was to crowdsource the translation of Harry Potter into Arabic, which quickly reached one million free downloads, but that venture quickly dissolved when J. K. Rowling’s publisher’s lawyers contacted him with a 30-page letter. During one of the most difficult times in his life, soon after his father died, Alaa left a multinational job to come home and then found an opportunity to present a business plan to Fadi Ghandour for an online Arabic bookstore. Fadi asked him to rework the idea, which he did. In his head, he wanted to be the Amazon of the region. His vision is to “break the barriers of knowledge sharing between individuals and create platforms that facilitate knowledge sharing”. He never gave up– first working with a tiny budget and utilizing his family (six siblings and his mother) for human resources in 2010, and slowly building a working model till he managed to get his first investment from Fadi Ghandour, three months later. He has now raised money from Oasis 500, 500Startups and Wamda Capital. Beginning with just 12 titles on his enterprise, he now offers more than 10 million titles. If you have read his story, then you know that he has faced every problem, be it about scaling up, shipping, regulation, payment and customs, with a smile. Ala’a grew up in Amman, Jordan in a Palestinian community of refugees, and is a graduate of Ruwwad, a foundation focusing on dis-enfranchised communities. He offers hope and optimism for the children in those areas- the hope that one day they can create their own business ventures. If Ala’a can, so can they.
So go ahead– use these tools to disrupt the market and create an organization that others long to emulate. Be the change-maker.


Think You’re Too Old to Be An Entrepreneur? Think Again. (Infographic)

If Hollywood wants to portray an entrepreneur in a movie, then he — and it’s usually a he – is in his early 20s, may or may not have a college degree, is probably wearing blue jeans and a hoodie, and is a bit unkempt, with messy hair and facial hair.
That stereotype may appeal to our interest in a narrative where geeks take over the world, but the Mark Zuckerberg-inspired vision is absolutely only a part of the entrepreneurship story. Many entrepreneurs don’t even think about launching their own business until they are in their 30s, 40s, and even 50s, after years of work experience.

Ray Kroc, the founder of McDonald’s, sold paper cups and milkshake mixers until he was 52, according to an infographic from San Francisco-based startup organization (below). Meanwhile, the founder of cosmetic behemoth Mary Kay, Mary Kay Ash, sold books and home decor objects until she was 45.
Fret not if you are over 40 and have yet to start your own business. There’s still time. And chances are, if you’ve worked a while, you’ve learned a thing or two about life and business that will be helpful, too.
Take a look for more examples of entrepreneurs who launched later in life. 



How Chhattisgarh And Uttarakhand Are Creating Business Opportunity For Entrepreneurs

Doing business in India was never as easy as it is now. With government coming in action,  India has improved drastically in the World Bank’s ‘Ease of Doing Business’ 2016 international ranking by moving up to 130 out of 189 countries in. The Report states that India has made the most improvement and with major reforms setting in from this year, the ranking is expected to further improve, leading to significant benefits for doing business in India.
Although this sounds good, still there is lot more to be done for India to continue rising up and investment is one of the sectors which needs to be focused on if we want ease of doing business to continue.
In a projection of investment requirement in the Indian economy over the next five years for achieving an average growth of 7 per cent per annum, it has estimated the figure at $ 4.7 trillion, which is nearly double the value of $ 2.9 trillion that was invested in the last 5 years.

Realizing the growing requirement for investment ASSOCHAM, India’s Apex Chamber for Commerce & Industry organized 2nd Global Investors’ India Forum 2016 (GIIF) (an Annual Meet for Investors and Investees) on 22nd and 23rd September 2016 at Hotel Taj Palace, New Delhi. The two-day conference was addressed by the Chief Ministers of Chhattisgarh and Uttarakhand, Dr. Raman Singh and Harish Rawat respectively, Minister of State for Finance, Arjun Ram Meghwal, Smriti Zubin Irani, Minister of Textiles Department to name few.
The conference highlighted the opportunities Chhattisgarh-Uttarakhand are giving to the investors and business owner to integrate their business operations.
Uttarakhand: Providing conducive environment for industrial growth
Uttarakhand is one of the most transparent states in ease of doing business. It has a lot of potential in infrastructure development and hospitality industry and there is an ample scope for expansion.
“The power generation is one of the major thrust areas. We are focussing on the development of small hydro power plants. Uttarakhand is the policy driven state. We are also providing the cheapest power in the country. He further said that Uttarakhand is one of the most transparent states to do business,” said Rawat while inaugurating the conference.
The state has very attractive MSME policy linked with the Startup policy. The Government has implemented a Startup policy to provide a platform to the students emerging from the educational Institutes of the state to help them grow as entrepreneurs.
“We have land availability and the climate for investment is very good in Uttarakhand. We are working on infrastructure development and there is an ample scope for expansion. We are also attracting a lot of people from small investors in the micro and small power projects and we are ahead to formulate our IT policy also, said Rawat.
Chattisgarh: Emerging as one of the best investment destinations
“Abundance of land, water, power, access to the market, business-friendly policies and amicable environment for business make Chattisgarh one of the best states for investors. We are established investment destination for heavy industries like defence, railways, infrastructure, food processing, capital goods manufacturing etc,” said Dr Raman Singh, Chief Minister, Government of Chattisgarh.
Chattisgarh has emerged as one of the best investment destinations in India due to optimum utilization of its capacities, strategic management of its natural resources and visionary governance.
Chhattisgarh and Uttarakhand are setting examples for the other Indian states. They are welcoming businesses to leverage the strategic location from where they can implement growth strategies and manage and integrate their business operations for the region and beyond.


7 Ways Entrepreneurs Drive Economic Development

There’s been a lot of talk lately about the future of work. Much of the time, these conversations are fueled by the anxiety many of us share as we try to understand the impact new technologies will have on our industries. We tend to reduce these discussions to binary arguments — how smart machines will do extraordinary things to improve our lives, or how this or that innovation will make human labor obsolete, creating a jobless dystopia. Both conclusions strike me as somewhat specious. It’s not that these concerns aren’t valid, but they oversimplify a more complex phenomenon.
Why do entrepreneurship and innovation fuel economic growth? On the surface, the answer seems intuitive: entrepreneurs create businesses and new businesses create jobs, strengthen market competition and increase productivity. Here in the United States, entrepreneurism is part of our American identity and self-image. It’s non-partisan, too; both sides of the political spectrum celebrate entrepreneurial small business as a fount of innovation and growth. Entrepreneurism is seen as a route to upward mobility — a way for average people to build wealth. Let’s take a closer look.
1. Investing in products and services people need.

What motivates a person to start a new business? According to traditional models, entrepreneurs create new businesses in response to unmet needs and demands in the market. That is, there is an opportunity to provide a product or service that is not currently in existence, or otherwise available. Economists refer to these business-starters as “opportunity” entrepreneurs in order to distinguish these individuals from those who start businesses for lack of better work opportunities. So-called “opportunity” entrepreneurs, who launch new enterprises in response to market needs, are key players when it comes to fostering economic growth in a region. They enable access to goods and services that populations require in order to be productive. This is not to ignore “necessity” entrepreneurs that launch enterprises because they have no other options. Both can and do contribute to economic growth.
2. Providing employment opportunities.
New businesses need to hire employees. They create jobs and these economic opportunities uplift and support communities through increasing the quality of life and overall standard of living.
3. Commerce and regional economic integration.
Technology has made it possible for small, entrepreneur-led businesses to expand into regional and global . When new businesses export goods and services to nearby regions, these enterprises contribute directly to a region’s productivity and earnings. This increase in revenue strengthens an economy and promotes the overall welfare of a population. Economies that trade with one another are almost always better off. Politics aside, engaging in regional and international trade promotes investment in regional transportation and infrastructure, which also strengthens economies. This has never been more true than it is today, as we live in an increasingly interconnected global economy. Even for a large and advanced economy like the United States, foreign markets have a significant role. Foreign trade, according to some estimates, is responsible for over 90 percent of our economic growth.
What exactly is innovation and how does it promote economic development? Under what conditions, do entrepreneurs innovate? A widely-accepted definition measures innovation using a set of criteria including how many new products are invented, the percentage of high-tech jobs, and the size of the talent pool available to tech industry employers. More recently and increasingly, our definition of innovation has expanded to include the development of new service offerings, business models, pricing plans, and routes to market. While the role that startups and young tech companies play in job creation is well documented, their contribution to overall productivity is less intuitive and not discussed as often. To better understand how innovation contributes to economic development, I’ve unpacked a few examples below.
4. New technologies promote efficiency.
The ability to turn ideas into new products and services that people need is the fount of prosperity for any developed country. Economic growth, generally speaking, is driven by new technologies and their creative applications. Periods of rapid innovation historically have been accompanied by periods of strong economic growth. The impetus of innovation is the greatest natural resource of all: the human mind. Creating innovative products and solutions requires an educated population and an environment where collaborative work can take place. In addition to being good for business, education increases workforce creativity and quality of life.
5. Addressing environmental challenges.
Innovation is (and will continue to be) crucial when it comes to addressing the enormous environmental challenges we face today: combating climate change, lowering global greenhouse gas emissions, and preserving biodiversity in the environment. Without power for extended periods of time, commerce comes to a halt.  Without water, we cannot live. Reliable access to these innovations (such as irrigation technology, electricity, and urban infrastructure) increases productivity and enhances economic development.
6. Innovation impacts socio-economic objectives.
Innovative business practices create efficiency and conserve resources. Innovation in agriculture is especially relevant for addressing socioeconomic challenges (in addition to encouraging economic growth). In the U.S., for instance, we waste billions of dollars annually due to inefficiencies and uncompetitive practices in our healthcare system. Hopefully, new ideas and innovations in the future will address these problems, resulting in further reforms. When this occurs, Americans’ overall health and quality of life will benefit, and so will our economy if our wasteful healthcare costs also decrease.
7. Innovation happens where there is competition. 
In essence, there is a positive feedback loop among innovation, entrepreneurship, and economic development.
New and growing businesses represent the principal sources of job creation and innovative activity in an economy, two factors that generally result in the rising standards of living for all.
However, it’s important to understand that entrepreneurship and innovation are dependent on access and participation. For entrepreneurs to bring new ideas to life, they need access to education and a level-playing field on which to compete. In this vein, the role of government leaders and public policy is to create conditions that allow more entrepreneurs to start businesses by implementing policies which nurture that environment so those businesses can grow. Economic growth suffers when entrepreneurial activity is unevenly spread socio-economically, demographically, and geographically. Under the right conditions, entrepreneurs have an incredible power: they help regional areas prosper economically, and they also serve society as they help engineer innovative solutions to problems and challenges.


Filipino Entrepreneurs

Henry Sy
Henry Sy is a Chinese Filipino entrepreneur and founder of SM Group. You’ll be hard pressed to not find an SM Mall around the Philippines. Henry Sy started building his own small business called “Shoe Mart” and eventually turned it into a major corporate identity. Henry Sy inspires many people that you can start small and grow it into a massive empire.
2. Manny Pacquio – Champion Boxer

Manny Pacquiao
Manny Pacquio is a famous professional champion boxer and now politician. He won six world titles and is the the first in eighth division world champion category. Manny Pacquio had to drop out of school due to extreme poverty and at the age of 14 started boxing. Manny Pacquio is one of the best icons known in the world today.
3. Tony Tan Caktiong – Jollibee
Tony Tan Caktiong
Feeling hungry? Try Jollibee. Tony Tan Caktion started an ice cream parlor in 1975 and then founded Jollibee in 1978. He took on the fast food giant Mc Donalds and expanded his restaurant chain all over the Phililippines. The big bee standing infront of Jollibee is a reminder of no matter who you are, you can still take on the big boys in the industry.
4. Charice – Singer
Charice is a Filipino singer who shot to fame using YouTube. She started off with a talent for singing (doesn’t all Filipinos have this talent?) and eventually turned her passion for singing into a world wide phenomenon. Charice is a great story of how you can use what you have, put it in front of as many people as possible online and eventually achieve success.
5. Anne Curtis – Actress / Model / Singer
Anne Curtis
Anne Curtis is a professional actress, model and singer of the Philippines. Half Filipino and Australian, her popularity has grown immensely over the years. One of the most interesting things about Anne Curtis is that she commands “Front of Mind” awareness. Ask any Filipino who you think of when you think of a female celebrity? It’s Anne Curtis. Anne Curtis inspires many Filipinos to go for their dreams. Fine then, i’ll admit it, she’s pretty
6. John Gokongwei – Cebu Pacific
John Gokongwei
John Gokongwei is the founder of Cebu Pacific, a Filipino airline company started in 2005. Cebu Pacific is one of the most recognised airline companies in the Philippines. John Gokongwei is a great rags to riches story of how he started entrepreneurship out of poverty. He also is a active philantrophist and donates millions to various charities around the Philippines.
7. Jaime Augusto Zobel – Ayala Malls
Jaime Augusto Zobel
Jaime Zobel is the founder of Ayala Corporation is a best known for his malls in Greenbelt and other locations. If you ever visit one of his Ayala Malls, you’ll notice that his architecture carries a unique design that’s reflective on his creative abilities. Jaime Zobel is a reminder of great design and architecture.
8. Rob Schneider – Actor
Rob Schneider
Rob Schneider is a funny guy and famous for appearing in many movies along side Adam Sadler. He does stand up comedy and features in films such as Duece Bigalow, The Hot Chick and Grown Ups. Rob Scheneider puts Philppines on the map through his movies and comedy roles.
9. Apl De Ap – Singer
Apl De Ap
Apl De Ap rose to fame through his career singing with the Black Eyed Peas. His famous song “BeBot” is completely sung in Tagalog and features Filipino people around the globe. Apl De Ap is a reminder of how you can make it in the music industry through the right contacts and associations.
10. Eduardo Cojuangco Jr – San Migel
Eduardo Cojuangco Jr
Feel like a beer? Try San Mig! Eduardo Conjuangco Jr is the founder of San Migel Corporation and produces one of the most trusted food and beverages in the Philippines. Locals love drinking San Migel beers and enjoy Eduardo’s creation on a regular basis, sometimes too much. Eduardo Conjuangco is a reminder of how you can have more fun the Philippines. So there’s my list, the top 10 Filipino Entrepreneurs. Of course, there’s many more people who would easily make this list, however it would take forever for you to read the entire list. After my study of these successful Filipino Entrepreneurs, I have discovered a common characteristic behind these people.
The 6 Secrets of Success of Filipino Entrepreneurs
1. They all loved what they are doing.
These Filipino entrepreneurs all enjoyed what they were doing. They never did anything they hated or anything they didn’t want to do. Their careers was built around what they enjoyed and had a natural talent for. 2. They didn’t need a qualified and formal education to become successful. Some of these Filipino Entrepreneurs didn’t have any education at all. They dropped out of school and somehow created success from it. 3. They all failed.
Before they “arrived” to success, they all previously failed in whatever they did to get there. This is an extremely common pattern. Everyone fails on their way to success. 4. They worked hard.
None of them took the easy route to get where they were today. They all worked long into the night on their craft, their business and their careers. They paid the price for success. 5. They all had dedication and persistence.
Along their journey, they all continually kept working towards their goal of being successful in their field. They never gave up after their first attempt, they just kept on going for many years. 6. It took time.
Lots of it. These Filipino Entrepreneurs shows that you can’t achieve success over night, it takes hard work, dedication and continual improvement to get where they were. They all focused on their careers and made it successful.
So there you have it, my list of top 10 Filipino Entrepreneurs and their 6 secrets of success. Please send me your thoughts or suggestions.
If you liked this article, please share it with your friends and together we can all learn from Filipino Entrepreneurs and succeed in our careers. To your success.
Khoa Bui
(no I’m not Filipino)


Management Skills You Need To Be The Next Great Entrepreneur

In today’s context, an entrepreneur is somebody who operates a business, taking risks and reaping the rewards that come with owning a business.An entrepreneur is a thought leader with often the expertise and knowledge of an innovator. Entrepreneurs bring new concepts to the table. They possess the right set of skills and the attitude to enhance and help a   strategic business progress while also producing greater revenue.
Certain skills of an entrepreneur are fossilized prominently.However, future  next gen entrepreneurs are required to have distinguished management skills for a remarkable status on a socio-economic platform. A first-rate entrepreneur thrives in his business strategy by abdicating the traditional ways of management and infusing innovative managerial skills.
It is extremely important for an entrepreneur to blend in the traditional management skills with new models and modernized techniques.

An entrepreneur must possess certain managerial skills –

Optimizing the use of scarce resources
Ensuring effective leadership
Motivating employees by creating a safe and secure environment
Promoting synchronization amongst industries and their relations
Strategizing towards the achievement of primary goals of an organization
Facilitating developmental opportunities that boost morale and help upgrade skills
Knowledge and expertise to expand productivity
Regulating competition in the market

Apart from the basic managerial skills, a future next gen entrepreneur must also have a grip on certain other factors that will enable them to exercise a strong foothold among his competitors. Information and knowledge are the key elements of management. Implementations of these elements are very crucial.Involvement in the society by taking on social responsibilities goes a long way in establishing the business as a responsible entity that helps make the world a better place while also using the market for good.

Passionate: An entrepreneur can be trained for certain managerial skills and expertise in the same, but one cannot be trained to be passionate as it is inbuilt. It is also imperative that the entrepreneur remains self-motivated to achieve success and reach their goals.
Vibrant Personality:A charismatic person can never be overlooked due to their unique personality and the wisdom they display in the form of their brilliance. An entrepreneur should live by the‘Be simple, but significant’ motto. A leader possesses traits which leave a long-lasting impact on their industry peers and subordinates. A principle trait in an entrepreneur is their dedication and reliance on hard work, without which an organization cannot be constructed.
Ready-to-go attitude: A strong temperament will always help an entrepreneur sail smoothly through the highs and lows of the business. They must have a ready-to-go attitude as it will help them perform better as a thought leader among his competitors in the market. They take risks and tasks head-on as and when they may appear, keeping in mind the inconsistencies and unpredictability of running a business.
Self-introspection: The capacity to look closely and examine one’s nature and social behavior while developing deeper insights for self-learning in business is an essential part of growing. This will provides a deeper understanding of the situation at hand, no matter the number of fluctuations in business. A true entrepreneur lives by the popular Japanese proverb – ‘Fall down seven times, get up eight.’ It is important to keep a check on the strategies which may lead to failure and rectify in accordance when taking a risk in business.
Flexibility: An entrepreneur needs to exercise flexibility and adopt certain changes for the benefit of the company. In order to lead, one  should keep in mind that there are certain  pre-requisites to run a successful business; the prime factor being that the needs of others always come first and one should always be open to change.
Self-belief: In order to survive a storm in relation to a business that is prone to vulnerability, one must prioritize and modify their business strategies and policies. This can be done effectively by making careful alterations to one’s character through self- discipline, patience, and self- belief. These qualities that define  an entrepreneur  evolve as a result of all the difficulties that come their way.
Money Management:All our lives we are taught that time is money and for an entrepreneur managing these two resources with the utmost care and patience is extremely crucial.  In simple words, a person needs to efficiently control his investments, savings, and expenses. This attribute in an entrepreneur is as important as the skill to carry out the business itself.
Networking: In a world where we are connected to each other through social media platforms business professionals can share their ideas on social media platforms in order to connect with people who can be of significance and can contribute towards their growth.Networking helps entrepreneurs to develop various skill-sets such as communicating with a large number of audiences,   gaining a deeper insight of the market trends and so much more.

These tips can also help traditional entrepreneurs grow and gain prosperity in their profession. As time passes by, it is really important to grow and evolve not only for individual improvement but also for business benefits. There are many academic courses which are available like the Diploma in Entrepreneurship Management (DEM) at the Indian School of Business Management and Administration (ISBM) which can contribute in acquiring these skills.
It is an overall win-win situation for each and every individual who is striving to make a difference in the society.