In April 2010, I made a decision to move on from Smart and pursue my businesses and life passions. The decision came with a lot of excitement and a little bit of anxiety of the unknown (sometimes known as “fear”).
Allow me to share what I tell my friends when they ask me about this leap from a very secure and rewarding career in Smart to becoming an entrepreneur – my own boss, the captain of my ship.
Let me start by saying that I enjoyed my work a whole lot at Smart. I was involved in developing products and services around mobile internet. My work required a lot of collaboration with international companies like Google, Facebook and Yahoo. We did a lot of contract reviews, service descriptions and product testing. These were all right along my alley and I enjoyed doing these.
Some would ask: “If you enjoyed what you were doing, then why did you resign?”
I sum it up this way: “I just want to have my time back.” I just want to have 100% control of my time. There were times during my employment when I had to choose to forego some opportunities for growth, or opportunities to spend time with family and friends because I had obligations at work. By leaving Smart and becoming an entrepreneur, I have full control of how I spend my time, where I spend my time. That, in itself, is precious and liberating.
For the past 5 years, I’ve been preparing to leave employment. Thus, I’ve been developing myself and building up various streams of income. My streams of income have reached a point where I am now willing to let go of the security of employment. By letting go of my day-job, I definitely will have less cash coming in. But with the time freed-up, I’ll be able to create more value and more income which, at a certain point in the future, will be more than what I make at Smart. This day will come and I’m working towards it.
Q: What will you do after Smart?
A: I’ll be managing my businesses. Unknown to many of my friends and officemates, I’ve been building up my businesses for the past 5 years. I have three primary businesses.
I have a blogging business, from which I earn a significant income monthly despite the limited number of articles I’ve been writing the past year. With more time in my hands, I’ll be able to write more often and grow my blogging business further. I’ll also be managing a blog where I’ll be farming out article writing to freelance bloggers. Interested? Contact me directly ;-) .
Visit my blogs:
I also have a real estate business. I buy foreclosed properties, renovate them and put them up for sale via rent-to-own. It’s a very good use of time. We set up the property for 1-2 months (bank purchase, refurbishing, marketing), then when we find a buyer, we’re able to earn passive income for the next 15 years. Nice, huh! Most of what I do in real estate was learned through Larry Gamboa’s books “Think Rich Pinoy!” and “Grow Rich Pinoy!” When a couple of my friends discovered that I’m into this business, they’ve asked me to teach them. So now I have a real-estate business mentoring relationship with some of my friends. My brother and I recently purchased two houses in Cavite and we’ll be remodeling them in June. Anybody want to rent-to-own a house in Crystal Aire, Gen. Trias, Cavite?
Last, but definitely not the least, I have an online start-up that caters to the needs of runners. The company is called “Runners’ Runner” (www.RunnersRunner.com) . We provide online registration, online payment and race kit delivery for runners. Typically, runners will need to go to a sports store at the mall to handwrite on a paper form, pay a fee and maybe even come back 2 weeks later to get the race kit (containing the race number and singlet aka sando). Runners’ Runner makes this process worry-free for runners by offering the service completely online.
We have an upcoming run, the PTAA Run Run for Children’s Fun 2. Registered runners have a chance to win roundtrip tickets to Australia, Hawaii or domestic flights and hotel accommodations. There are limited slots so you better register quickly before race kits run out. Bilis, register na! :-) Click here to register: http://www.runnersrunner.com/store/events/run-run-for-childrens-fun-2.html
Those are my businesses.
Q: So, what is it like moving in from Smart to being an entrepreneur?
Oh, it’s been very exciting! I hit the the road running by immediately staffing for the PSI Youth Camp the day after my last day at Smart. It was an awesome weekend with very energetic Teens at Subic, Olongapo. (More on that in another article). Even more exciting was my personal retreat at Batanes. I joined the Awesome Batanes culinary and heritage tour by Anton and Ivan. It was a 3-day tour, then I stayed on at Batanes for two more days on my own. Take a look at some of my favorite photos and get a glimpse of the beauty of Batanes. (link to FB photos).
I haven’t really been “working” full-time on my businesses. That starts on Monday, June 7.
The Grateful Ed
As I take this step forward in my life and career, I’d like to thank the friends and colleagues I gained in the past 1.5 years that made my stay at Smart all worthwhile. Thank you Jim and Jerome for the opportunities you made available for me. Thank you Sir Polly for the one-on-one conversations we had – truly among the highlights of my stint at Smart. Thank you to the VADS team, the Internet Partnerships team, friends at Marketing and Public Affairs. Thank you for the friendship and the good work that we did together.
I am now definitely a better person than when I joined Smart in December 1, 2008.
I pray that I leave this company better off than when I joined the company.
And I pray that I have touched people’s lives through the work I did at Smart, be it the subscribers who used our services, or my friends and colleagues with whom we created some good stuff.
Edwin “Ka Edong” Soriano