For any young and budding entrepreneur or graduating student, networking is an incremental element for setting a business or career. Networking provides the most productive, most proficient and most enduring tactic to build relationships. Relationships founded on friendship are the catalyst to success, serve as a resource and help others to succeed.
Last February 22, 2014, the fourth year students along with the Society of Thomasian Entrepreneurs, the official organization of the UST College of Commerce Entrepreneurship Department, conducted a seminar entitled “ACCESS: Interlocking Relationships” held at the Elements, Centris, Quezon City, Manila.
The main objective of this event was to gather different business administration students and entrepreneurs to cultivate new business ideas and enhance business relationships. This was also an opportunity for the students to build linkages and networks as well as to develop every ones personalities.
According to Bob Burg, best-selling author of Endless Referrals and The Go-Giver: A Little Story about a Powerful Business Idea, “I like to define networking as cultivating mutually beneficial, give-and-take, win-win relationships…the end result may be to develop a large and diverse group of people who will gladly and continually refer a lot of business to us, while we do the same for them.”
The seminar had three main keynote speakers. They started off the event with the Program Head of Undergraduate Studies in FEU Manila Institute of Education; Dr. Freddie A. Quinito, as the first speaker. With his countless doctorate and master’s degrees from various universities, previously engaged in many businesses, as well as a praxis-certified who can teach in the United States in the areas of English Language Teaching and Special Education, his topic mainly focused on personality development.
ACCESS: Interlocking Relationships
He inspired students by sharing business success stories and taught them business skills and attitudes that they needed to gain advantage over others. He also discussed and enumerated effective communicating leadership skills such as active and emphatic listening, personal relations, leadership and motivation. Dr. Freddie A. Quinito ended his presentation with an underlying thought; “These may be simple ideas but are important steps towards becoming a competitive business owner.”
After the attendees had their sumptuous banquet, the second keynote speaker was introduced. He studied Development in De La Salle University – Manila. Enamoured by the vision, theories and practices of the group, he decided to pursue his own social enterprise in growing, producing and selling duck meat and egg products through the help and mentorship of Tony Meloto and the Gawad Kalinga Center for Social Innovation Team.
Its mission is to create and develop world class duck egg and meat products from the Philippines, to bring dignity to duck farmers and the rest of the players in the industry. Upon incubation and mentoring, he is now head of a company started in 2013, called 100 Ducks Incorporated. Mr. Marco Alvaro Benitez livened up the atmosphere of the seminar with his [suggestive] jokes and remarks about his products. He asked the audience several questions to pique their curiosity as well as their participation; thereby giving them rewards should they answer correctly. He also introduced other businesses in part of Gawad Kalinga namely Plush and Play and Bayani Brew.
With these, the attendees were able to be enlightened with the concept of Social Business here in the Philippines. That it is possible to create a business that does not focus on profit- and wealth-maximization but is able to solve social injustices and enrich the lives of the underserved portion of society.
Soon after, an intermission number by two Thomasian entrepreneurship students was presented. They guested in various TV programs like ASAP XV, Pinoy Big Brother teen clash as opening act and; Pinoy Big Brother Unite at The Big Night for the Finale. They were also the Philippine representatives and finalists for tvN Starhunt in South Korea. The Albino twins, Charlene and Charmaine captivated and enchanted the audience with their powerful voices.
The last keynote speaker was finally introduced. One of the sought after professional speakers today, he earned the moniker of “THE ENTREP CHAMP” in the Entrepreneurship community because of his business savvy & wisdom.
In 2005, he was awarded as one of the TOP TEN ENTREPRENEURS by Entrepreneur Philippines and the 2007 TEENPRENEUR CHALLENGE WINNING MENTOR of Entrepreneur School of Asia. He has been featured in books such as “Introduction to Entrepreneurship” published in 2007 and Entrepreneur Philippines 67 Success Stories in its December 2008 issue. He is also a finalist for 2008 NOKIA MOBILE ENTREPRENEURS AWARDS. In 2011, he was recognized as one of Balanga’s City “Dangal Balangueño”- recognition for outstanding achievers who made mark in entrepreneurship. An author of the best-selling book entitled “Strategies of a Champion Entrepreneur”, a book that gives you 10 guidelines for your entrepreneurial journey towards success.
Although Mr. Paulo Tibig did a lengthy talk, he kept the audiences entertained by asking them questions and making them dance in a small portion of his seminar. Truly, we had saved the best speaker for last.
For the second and last intermission number, we had the privilege of having Mr. Commerce and Business Administration and Mr. Thomasian Personalities finalist for 2012-2013 to show us his moves during the event. Mr. Luigi Maliwat graced the stage by dancing to the song of Zedd featuring Foxes; “Clarity”. Even if the dance was quite short, he was able to hype up the audience and make the ladies swoon.
The last activity was a networking ceremony. The students from the different levels were grouped according to their birth month and were able to acquaint themselves with the others. To make the activity more enjoyable, they played a game of “pass the message” which also enabled to ward off the awkward atmosphere.
The event ended late into the night and even though most of the participants got exhausted, they relished every moment that had transpired. For most of them, it was their first formal seminar which made it very memorable. They truly felt what it meant to be an entrepreneur and they look forward to attending momentous events such as this.
By: Frances Anne Castillo