Go to (the Right) School, Be Successful

Towards the Path to Success

I look at my daughter and I see an entrepreneur.  Okay, it is all in my head, but I want it with all my heart.  Because entrepreneurs are the ones who find their passion, do something about their passion, rake in all the money and success and (have the potential to) make the world a better place.

I want that for my daughter.  So I transferred her to another school.

It was a summer and I was learning about and loving finance, and the idea of a different school for my 9-year old daughter kept growing (gnawing) in my head – an entrepreneurial school that would give her a love of finance and help her find and inflame her passion.  The next day, I started interviewing other schools.  She was, at that time, enrolled in a traditional school – rigorous daily classes, heavy assignments, a bag with wheels that would make her shoulder stoop, teachers that taught but did not really teach.  She had the burden to understand concepts that were taught to her in 30 minutes or less, and the burden to ask mother for help, yes, me, while I also tried to remember and understand concepts that I already buried in the annals of my memory.  We were a mess.  Well, me mostly.

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Lessons from the Business of Show Business

No Business Like Show Business

It was not my first time.

I remember.  It was more than 15 years ago when I produced my first show.  It was in a southern province, accessible by land (8 hours) and by air (45 minutes).  We partnered with someone who was introduced to us as the wife of a Brunei prince.  Such was the rage at that time and many young women – some described as desperate, others gold diggers, others still victims of their own beauty (and another’s greed) – fell for the charms of dark-skinned princes, giving birth to scions of royalty.

Indeed she was beautiful and was moneyed and was very much interested in bringing to her hometown some showbiz denizens.  “To make my mother happy,” she quipped.

The show was a moderate success and we learned a lot.  One partner made some unnecessary trips by plane which added to the expenses; the people that we tapped to get sponsors did not deliver (they got zero sponsors); the souvenir program was overpriced (we ended up hauling the whole lot back to headquarters); it was not easy.

I was reminded again of these lessons when we did “Love in the Key of R”.

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Time Management for Entrepreneurs


Capturing Time

Capturing Time

I am overwhelmed.

The problem with having a finger in too many things is that it is a problem –you end up going around like a headless chicken, not knowing which tail is up and why, missing appointments, wanting to miss appointments, day ends up unproductive because the enormity of everything threatens to engulf you and not doing anything seems so very enticing.

Warren Buffett said: “We enjoy the process much more than the proceeds.”

But he is Warren Buffett, and he has a team of lawyers, tax planners, financial advisers, accountants and analysts, not to mention secretaries and people who will do anything for him, at his beck and call.  He is not a one man like team like you and me – starting entrepreneurs that we are.  Pending a Warren Buffett status, we have got to get a hold of ourselves, and time.

After all, they say, time is all in the mind.  It can contract and expand at the turn of the mental dial.  Now, how to find that mental dial…

Enter time management.

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Teaching Children To Grow Money: The John Gokongwei Story

Teaching The Little Ones To Fish

Teaching The Little Ones To Fish

I look at C and ask myself: How do I teach her about money philosophy?  Forget philosophy.  How do I teach her about money?  It looks like such a daunting task.  Can it be taught?  I decided I would tell her stories.

Stories of the childhood of entrepreneurs always fascinated me.  There was always this one fateful episode that would alter their path, make them entrepreneurs and lead them to untold riches – a parent’s influence, a disadvantage, an early realization that it is money which makes the world go round, and that they have got to have it on their side.


John Gokongwei belonged to a family of rich migrants.  He had it all as a kid.  He was such a gallant young man that there were days when he would treat all of his classmates to a movie at the cinema his father owned.  But at 13, his father died and he lost it all.

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