The Entrepreneurial HEARTSET

Researches show that 50% of startup businesses fail within a year, 80% fail in five years, and a whopping 96% in ten. Simply put, out of 100 businesses, only 4 will live up to a decade!
Such staggering numbers would leave us asking what went wrong. Is it the product? The pricing structure? The marketing strategy? Did the business owner fail to “unlock his entrepreneurial mindset”?

I am no business guru nor an MBA, but I can speak based on my own experience as an entrepreneur, whose company just celebrated its 11th anniversary last October (*confetti*).

In 2005, I built my voiceover company, Creativoices Productions, not because I wanted to compete against other recording studios or to earn big money doing voiceovers. I built the company in order to open the first and only voice acting school in the country, the Philippine Center for Voice Acting. My mission was to open the door of the voice acting industry to anyone who aspires to be part of it, and to equip them with the tools, skills and techniques they need to succeed. I know in my heart that my business is a success not because of the profit it generates, but because of the impact it has on the industry. I’m also proud to say that my contributions to the voice acting industry was recognized even by the Philippine Center for Entrepreneurship, more popularly known as Go Negosyo, when I was awarded as Most Inspiring Bataeno Microentrepreneur in 2009. Since then, I have been one of Go Negosyo’s “Angelpreneurs,” as a business mentor focusing on Youth Entrepreneurship.

So why do most businesses fail? I believe that most businesses fail not because of the wrong product or price or strategy, but because they are asking the wrong questions and seeking the wrong answers.

Let me explain.

Once a person decides to start a business, the first question they ask is “what kind of business should I start?” And more often than not, they look for the business idea that is trending or that will make them the most money. Wrong question.

When you ask people why they would want to start their business, they would usually reason with things like “so I can earn more money than if I were an employee,” or “so I can be my own boss” or “so I can manage my own time.” Wrong answer.

Entrepreneurship is not about making MONEY, but making MEANING. Before getting your mindset right, you should get your HEARTSET right.

The entrepreneurial heartset has 3 main components:

  1. PASSION. I believe the first question you should ask if you want to get into business is, “what am I passionate about?” You should choose a business where what you’re doing is something that you absolutely love to do. Why? Because starting a business is not easy, let alone sustaining it. Your passion is the fuel that drives you to get up and go to work. It makes you resilient. It pushes you to give it one more try, make one more call, and do it one more day.

  1. SKILL. Passion without skill is called a “frustration.” Ever heard of a frustrated singer, or artist or dancer? That’s what I mean. When you are passionate about the business you are in, you have an innate desire to become better at your craft everyday. You take it upon yourself to develop and master the skills needed for you to succeed. Even after 20 years of being in the voice acting industry, I still develop my own skills. I read books, watch videos and continually develop my voice. Not only that, but I also take the time to learn sound design, so that I can also teach it to my students.

  1. VALUE. The great Jim Carrey said it too, “Ask yourself, what does the world need that your talent and skills can provide?” Real entrepreneurs come from a place of GIVING, not GETTING. That is why it is important to look at your business beyond just the purpose of making money, but more for the purpose of bringing value and making a positive impact in the lives of others.

This entrepreneurial heartset is what I aim to teach to the Filipino youth through my advocacy Negosyo Kabataan – a group of young Filipino entrepreneurs whose mission is to help the youth build passion-driven businesses. I have created this group to support R.A. 10679, or the Youth Entrepreneurship Act written by my good friend, Senator Benigno “Bam” Aquino III. The Youth Entrepreneurship Act mandates to develop the youth’s aptitude for finance and entrepreneurship through education and specialized training programs. As an entrepreneur and youth advocate myself, I would like to do my part in helping young Filipinos live a life of greatness and success through entrepreneurship