During situations like this, I’ve noticed that a lot of people flock to get news and information on Viber and other chat-based channels. Johanson Dy Cheng, the founder of www.entrepnegosyo.com and www.emarket.com.ph, is using his community to help others in this time of crisis.

Johan founded these websites to help share general and specific information regarding business and commerce needed by up-and-coming young entrepreneurs. These avenues for learning is not only a simple and
necessary networking tool, it also serves as a communication link for already well established and successful businessmen and tycoons, whether local or international.

About the Founder

Johan graduated from Jubilee Christian Academy in 1996 and from De La Salle University- College of Saint Benilde in 2000, with a Bachelor of Science degree, major in Industrial Design.

He is no stranger to hard work as values like this were passed on to him from parents and family that handles various business endeavors. He was an academically gifted student, and was chosen as one of the select industrial design delegates sent by his school to the Industrial Design Forum held in Sydney, Australia from 1999 to 2000 under the umbrella of the Biennial Congress of International Council of Societies of Industrial Design.
When he graduated in 2000, he was conferred as one of the Ten Most Outstanding Student Leaders of all school organizations with the COPS Bahaghari Award of De La Salle University.

While in college at the De La Salle University, he was cited and included five times in the Dean’s List.

His professional career spans both the private and volunteer sectors. His work in the private sector began immediately after his graduation from college, when he joined the family-owned House of Accessories, where
he assisted in handling inquiries and purchasing of products from different Asian countries. During this time, he was working simultaneously as a bank trainee with China Banking Corporation in the year 2000, focusing on the analysis of financial statements of companies obtaining loans.

For the next 13 years, he worked for the banking industry’s giants. Among them were Standard Chartered Bank from 2000-2005. He was pirated from by Citibank from 2005 to 2010, where he rose from the ranks of trainee to Customer Relationship Manager. All the experiences he accumulated during his days in banking prepared him for entrepreneurship.

About EntrepNegosyo

In 2005, Johanson started EntrepNegosyo, an information gateway intended for the Philippine business community. It provided business news, bulletins, research and technology advancements that helped promote entrepreneurship literacy. His aim was to create global impact by empowering young Filipino entrepreneurs to be leaders, and taking the initiative in finding community solutions.

A passionate advocate of entrepreneurship, he envisioned EntrepNegosyo to be a universal portal where start-up companies could utilize shared resources from partners across the globe. To date, EntrepNegosyo has
more than 5,000 start-up subscribers as well as Small and Medium Industries (SMEs) taking advantage of its easy-to-use portal.

On his EntrepNegosyo Facebook site, Johan has created a dynamic meeting ground that allows its voluminous membership to expand their businesses while networking with one another, through active social media interaction. Relevant and valuable daily business advice and bulletins are part of the EntrepNepsyo’s regular menu, as well as inspirational talks from featured speakers. His work today allows young Filipino entrepreneurs the information and support to start, to grow, to network and to succeed in their chosen business endeavors through direct exposure to the working opportunities offered in his two social media sites.

By pioneering this online Philippine business community page for Filipino entrepreneurs, Cheng was able to pursue his passion for web and industrial design. Johan considers it a rare opportunity to work at something that he is very passionate for. Apart from this, Johanson has also involved himself in several other ventures: As social media and business development head of Philip Leonard Furniture; as Vice-President for Business Information Technology at Real Estate HUB, LLC; and as Sales Representative at AutoKid Group of Companies. Johan’s career in the volunteer sector began in 2000, when he joined Junior Chamber International (JCI) Manila. Here he further honed his leadership abilities, becoming chairman for different standing committees. He was soon an invaluable, eager member, driven by his innate desire to be of assistance to everyone.

Johan’s Working Dream

It was during his years as a member of JCI Manila that he found his second calling —that of spending much of his time in humanitarian aid and development, onsite rescue and relief operations. He also found himself in resource mobilization for healthcare delivery. He assisted also in bolstering capacities of existing outposts for basic services.

He was drawn most to caring for children with disabilities, having realized that it was the most marginalized and ignored groups of children today, most especially those afflicted with cerebral palsy. It was then that he
decided to pursue a lifelong mission of uplifting the lives of children with disabilities in the Philippines by creating awareness, educating stakeholders and providing appropriate opportunities for development and a better life.

He started his spiritual ministry at a very early age, actively serving as a volunteer for the Christian Bible Church of the Philippines in his local community at Talayan Village, in Quezon City. A devout Christian, he has
since worked closely with various parishes and charitable institutions, including continuing support for the Christ Commission Fellowship composed by lay men and women who share God’s love and the Gospel.

Today, much of his ministry has been devoted to children with disabilities. He has made this his life’s work, going to hospitals to visit and pray with patients daily after work. He will usually take with him his friends from church and colleagues from JCI Manila to provide comfort and hope to the seriously ill.

Johan is like the “energizer bunny,” never running out of energy to do whatever he can in a day which seems to be lacking in hours for this workaholic who detests holidays. Johan seems to have mastered time
management to perfection. He sleeps only three to four hours daily as he always is on the go whenever he is called. He spends a lot of his time meeting with his “Golden Heart” team in looking for ways to further reach out to more children.

Can you describe your business model? How can you earn? 

Johan earns through domain reselling and through the e-commerce platform.

How were you impacted by this pandemic? How were you impacted by the Enhanced Community Quarantine? 

At this time, Johan says that there is no chance to do social networking and business networking. He would like to get the word out that SMEs can use the platforms that he has to promote their businesses.

How can people help you moving forward? What kind of help are you looking for? 

He wishes that people can share his websites to all business owners: www.entrepnegosyo.com and www.emarket.com.ph

Because of the things happening now, what changes will you be implementing in your business? 

He plans to add an online payment gateway so that people can pay online.

What are the business lessons that you have learned from this? 

Johan says that we need to educate people and businesses on having a contingency plan on how to earn online.

Spread the word about these two sites that can help local businesses:

www.entrepnegosyo.com

www.emarket.com.ph

Thanks for continuously reading my stories on local businesses!

P.S. Please follow https://www.facebook.com/groups/BounceBackPH/ to see how you can support the Philippines.

P.P.S. Please follow #BounceBackforBusiness #GInspiration #GoLocalPH for more Local SME and Professional stories that we can support!

P.P.S. If you want to be featured next, please visit this link https://mommyginger.com/smes-and-professionals-unite-during-this-time-of-crisis.html

Summer is the perfect time for swimming lessons. Usually, during these months, local business Swim Central Inc. earns from corporate clients who want to offer these classes as an extra curricular activity for their employees. They also earn from individuals who sign up for themselves for beach season and to send their kids for these classes.

But since the pandemic hit different countries and the Philippine government mandated a complete shut down of Metro Manila, not a lot of Filipinos are enrolling (for obvious reasons).

Beginnings of Swim Central

Swim Central was started by Coach Mark Christopher Santiago, a freelance and part time swimming instructor. He started this way back in June 2012 while still having a full time job. His love for swimming later escalated to the desire of sharing with others the fulfilling experience and benefits of swimming, specifically to the young professionals.

With proper training, mentorship and research, he was able to establish a system on how to teach swimming to young adults in an efficient approach made easy and fun.

In the past years, Swim Central has been continuously growing and expanding as Coach Mark trains new swimming coaches so they can serve more young adults and teach them the proper way of swimming and enjoy the benefits it could give.

Impact of COVID-19

When asked how COVID-19 affected their business, Coach Mark mentions that there are a few swimming lessons now considering this should be their peak season.

I asked Coach Mark these three important things:

How can people help you moving forward? What kind of help are you looking for? 

Coach Mark hopes those who already enrolled for swimming lessons and wasn’t able to push through with their scheduled sessions due to this quarantine season will still continue their journey to dive into the lifestyle of swimming after this health threat dies down.

He and his team hope the swimming enthusiasts we have in our community and their alumni would rally behind them to actively promote the lifestlye of swimming for a healthy and active Filipino community.

Because of the things happening now, what changes will you be implementing in your business?

He said that he will create new strategies in ushering more students for Swim Central even after summer. He also plans to strengthen existing offers of Swim Central merchandise like SC Shirts and venture to personal swimming apparels that students can use during their actual swimming lessons.

What are the business lessons that you have learned from this? 

Coach Mark said that a business should increase their emergency fund threshold. He says that thankfully they have a fund. But somehow on “worse case scenarios” and unforeseen circumstances such as non operation for a month (like this one), there should be an increase in the minimum requirement hereon.

Please support Swim Central by checking out and following these links:

http://www.swimcentral.com.ph

https://facebook.com/swimcentralph

Let’s support local businesses!

P.S. Please follow https://www.facebook.com/groups/BounceBackPH/ to see how you can support the Philippines.

P.P.S. Please follow #BounceBackforBusiness #GInspiration #GoLocalPH for more Local SME and Professional stories that we can support!

The effect of the corona virus (COVID-19) won’t be just on people’s health, but it will have an effect on the world’s economy and people’s mental health. Here is a good podcast of the World Economic Forum that you can follow:

The International Labor Organization also mentions that the COVID-19 Pandemic will result to approximately 25 Million people who will lose their jobs: https://www.ilo.org/global/about-the-ilo/newsroom/news/WCMS_738742/lang–en/index.htm

Regardless of how huge the effects will be, what we know is that the Corona Virus will definitely impact all of these. Given the uncertainty of things and the future, I’d like to believe that the strength of each one of us collectively will help us weather through a crisis like this.

In our country, the Bayanihan spirit of the Philippines shines through in times like these. A lot of negativity and fake news have circled the internet, and a few people talk about the help that’s going around. I’ve been seeing a lot of people and groups stepping up though to help certain segments of society. An example is that the freelancing community that I’m a part of have been teaching employees how to effectively work from home. What’s interesting that speakers were from different professions and had different backgrounds.

I think we can all do our share to focus and promote the good things happening in our community.

This morning, when I woke up, I wondered how “in my own little way” as a blogger could I be able to help the people in times like this. My heart (as you all would know since I always talk about it) really goes out to business owners, professionals and freelancers who are affected by this crisis. The SMEs in the Philippines also make up 61.6% of the country’s employement (source: https://businessmirror.com.ph/2019/01/03/helping-msmes-grow/). If they are negatively affected, their could be a huge hit on our country’s employment rate.

As I read all of the comments in Jason Dela Rosa’s Facebook Group Bounce Back PH, I thought of running articles and features from tomorrow onwards on different Micro, Small and Medium enterprises (SMEs) whose businesses have been affected by the Corona Virus and the Enhanced Community Quarantine.

I think all these local businesses need all the support that they can get from all of us.

If you know a business which needs help, please share this form with them. I’ll be happy to write about them in the following days.

For all the articles about these local businesses and SMEs, I will share links at MommyGinger’s Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/mommyginger/

Hope you can read about them and support them! Have a great day!

P.S. Please read my previous article on the Effects of the Enhanced Community Quarantine and Corona Virus on small businesses: https://mommyginger.com/short-and-long-term-effects-of-enhanced-community-quarantine-to-smes.html

I joined a webinar recently to talk about COVID19, the impact that we all think it has on SMEs, professionals and freelancers. I was asked the question: What do you think the short and long term effects of Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) are to SMEs.

I just wanted to share my thoughts on this so that MSMEs and start-up founders like me can reflect and plan accordingly. If you want to add to the list, please feel free to comment on the comment section below.

Short Term effects of Enhanced Community Quarantine on Businesses

These are what I personally think the short term effects of this quarantine period are:

Feel a huge impact on their Cash Flow. Most of the businesses, no matter the size, are living from paycheck to paycheck. This is where we will feel the full effect of not saving up for a rainy day (Yes, as a business, we should also have an emergency fund or plan to maintain business operations and pay our commitments).

For our personal finances, we always talk about emergency funds and having enough to sustain us when unforeseen events happen. This should also be the case for SMEs. But since not a lot of businesses have extra funds for an unforeseen event like this, businesses lack funds to pay their people, they don’t get to have enough funds for the bills that they have, etc. This will result to layoffs, penalties and interests for unpaid bills or taxes, not having enough funds to pay for offices, machines, equipments, etc. Some of these companies will then have to declare bankruptcy.

Some companies will panic because they are not ready for a “work-from-home” scenario. For the longest time, our minds have been set a certain way by policies and directives about working that have been passed on from generation to generation. We think that people are more productive when they come and stay in the office from 8-5 or 9-6. There are no policies on working remotely. No policies set on which tools to use, when to use these tool, how to best use them, etc. During quarantine, most of the business owners will scramble to set up a system that will work for them “temporarily”. 

It will affect people emotionally and psychologically. This isolation will get to some people. And with the news about COVID 19 and this community quarantine, it will definitely foster low moral, scare, lack of motivation due to lack of freedom (freedom that we are so used to). For business owners, some will be depressed because of the uncertainty of their businesses, thus, possibly leading to making the wrong business decision. 

Long Term effects of Enhanced Community Quarantine on Businesses

The only thing constant in this world is change. So as humans, I think that we will obviously “adapt” to whatever our environment throws at us, thrive and survive. With this, we will be gunning for the “normalization” of things. We will look for ways to bring out the new “normal”.

That being said:

  • Businesses will be keen on visiting policies and creating new policies for situations like these. They will probably create new policies for working at home, dealing with Pandemic like this, etc.
  • Most companies will see that having their Employees “Work-from-Home” is actually possible. I feel that a lot of business owners will see after a while that given this kind of environment, there are some people and job functions that can really be done from home and are even more productive this way. They will also see that there are people and jobs, too, where an office setting is more beneficial. Business owners will be more open to having a more results based environment and see the value for certain types of jobs and personalities. They’ll probably be more open to hiring independent contractors and freelancers who work well in these types of environment.
  • Shifts in business models of some businesses. Business owners will see that there may be a few things that they need to tweak in term of how they generate revenues. For examples, a company that used to do things mostly offline, will think of diversifying and looking at other sources of revenue. 
  • Rise of the new creators and inventors. When unforeseen situations like this happen, they become “seen” and people get to experience a different set of challenges and pain points. Some of us go the extra mile and create solutions for the things that we experience now and for the things that we wish we had at this point in time.

What can we do to battle the negative effects and stay sane?

For Business Owners and Startup Founders: Revisit your business model. Try to look for other ways you can earn. As I mentioned, it’s time to look for new ways of earning, if you aren’t really getting any revenue.

This is also the time do some “cleanups”. Clean up processes. Find ways on how to make processes more efficient. This is the time to quickly work on things that would normally get set aside.

Take care of your people. We are all new to this. As business owners and entrepreneurs, we’ve handled a lot of challenges along the way. From overcoming these things, we’ve become stronger. Let’s step up and be leaders at this time. Make your people feel safe and secure.

For employees: Take care of yourself. Even when in lock down, try to maintain a “balance” with everything that you do. It’s hard to separate working from personal time when both are done in the same environment. Try to set boundaries for each. Take breaks while working. At the same time, strive to be more productive, too, while at home. It’s hard, but you’ll get the hang of it.

To motivate you to work from home, you can (1) go back to your company’s mission and see if you can help achieve the mission that they have. In Taxumo, our mission is really to help people compute, file and pay their taxes anytime and anywhere. We are working doubly hard now to reach more people so that they don’t have to worry about paying taxes during times like these. Our government uses these (our taxes) to fund public hospitals and other initiatives that can help our countrymen in times like these.

Another thing that you can look at to motivate you is (2) look at your own personal goals. Who are you doing this for? Going back to the reason why you’re working can help you out at this time.

Let me share with you a video that I shared with some of my employees and hopefully this will help. It talks about looking for the FLOW.

We’ll all get through this. We must get through this. I still believe in the human spirit and how we can turn situations like this into something beneficial for all of us. Let’s help one another, and probably, after all of this has died down, we’ll all be super humans.

P.S. I read this article that I had written 6 years ago when I was “about” to start working from home: https://mommyginger.com/work-at-home-me.html Just brings back a lot of emotions 🙂

We spent my daughter’s birthday at Marco Polo last weekend, and we got home last Tuesday. And since Tuesday, our entire family have stayed at home. We never stepped out since then.

Like our fellow Filipinos, we’ve been monitoring the news and the DOH website: https://www.doh.gov.ph/2019-nCoV Please get information from them. There are a lot of fake news that’s being circulated at this time. Like this morning, Ate Len (who helps us take care of Zeeka) told me, “Maam, sabi nila, saging lang daw katapat ng virus na yan (All we need to do is to eat bananas to prevent the virus)”. I told her if that were the case, then we wouldn’t have all of these COVID 19 cases! haha! I then told her to just check information from the Department of Health and not to readily believe information from elsewhere.

So anyway, today, I wanted to share with you what my COVID 19 prevention tools are here at home.

Xiaomi Mi Air Purifier 3H (White)

I actually got this from EJ last Christmas. No, I don’t have any psychic powers. I wanted it for my allergic rhinitis. I heard that this helps alleviate allergies. It just so happened that we (the Philippines) had that Taal volcano Ashfall concern to deal with after, and now this, Corona virus.

It’s primary filter removes the basic dust that’s in your home. Then it has a HEPA filter that eliminates smoke, household dust, mold, pollen and other fine particles up to 0.03 microns in size.

It also has an activated carbon filter that removes toxic substances.

Its pPurification Capacity (CADR) is at 380 sq. m per hour. We actually placed it inside the Master’s bedroom, but I transferred it this week to the sala. This is because we’ve been having a lot of deliveries lately that it made sense to put it there.

Does it work?

I hope so. I’m not sure if it works on virus, but it definitely helped me reduce my allergies.

Meo Mask

As for the mask, we didn’t hoard masks or anything like that. We got this super cool mask from https://www.mightybaby.ph/meo. The thing is though that they don’t have stocks of these anymore. What I like about it is that it’s washable.

It fits snuggly also on the sides. At the same time though, because of its design, you can breathe comfortably. The design protrudes in the middle so you have space to breathe. You can also change the filters every week. I forgot to buy the filters from them (although it came with two filters), so I just place the PM 2.5 filters that I got from Lazada.

We don’t use it as much anymore since we don’t go out of the house.

USB Charging Portable Creative Mini Air Purifier Necklace Air Cleaner Pendant

When it comes to being the best at discovering unique finds like this and protecting the family, my mom and sister probably would probably make it to the list.

They bought air purifier necklaces like these for the entire family.

So researched about this air purifier made in China and it works to purify indoor air, remove fine particulate matter (PM2.5), formaldehyd, odor and dust, bacteria.

These necklaces also release anion groups, improve air quality effectively. It only has one button to either turn it on or off. It also has a rechargable lithium battery. The working principle around it is it being an air ioniser. According to wikipedia, Air ionisers have been used to eliminate the occurrence of airborne bacterial infections and to reduce static electricity build-up in electronics.

It helps purify the air surrounding the person up to 10m². It’s light weight and safe to use around children and infants. Just don’t put it near any heat source, since it may break the device.

Hand Sanitizers

Since we frequently wash at home, if we do use sanitizers, we want them to be as mild as possible. These are the two hand sanitizers that we use at home for Zeeka, our daughter.

Aromavibe Essentials Defense Hand Sanitizer with Essential Oils 50ml

  • Aromavibe Essentials Hand Sanitizer are made from Ethyl Alcohol and Essential Oils. It contains the combination of cinnamon, clove, rosemary, lemon and eucalyptus essential oils that is really know as a germ protecting mix. Inspired by the mix of Thieves, On Guard, Fighting Five and Germ Destroyer of essential oil brands. Effectively removes germs while non-drying on the skin.Non-sticky 
  • Pocket-sized 
  • Can be used to clean toys and surfaces 

This is the link to order the product:

https://www.lazada.com.ph/products/aromavibe-essentials-defense-hand-sanitizer-with-essential-oils-50ml-i599152581-s1642796157.html?spm=a2o4l.10450891.0.0.752ff777ra1x3w&mp=3

Belo Baby Hand Sanitizer

I got this from the grocery. Zeeka loves it because of the scent.

So there you have it. These are the “tools” that I have at home. How about you? What do you have at home to prevent the spread of COVID 19?