Bruneian Life Coach

It is rare for me to read up about a Bruneian who had left Brunei and lived overseas and make something out of their life. Hope to see more of them. Unfortunately it seems that these individuals often find that they are valued more elsewhere and they stay there. Talk about Brain Drain. We need to keep this people here in Brunei, but if the country is not ready for them then it is our lost.
http://www.bt.com.bn/features/2011/08/06/life-coach-brisbane

additionally, she is conducting a talk on essence of sales. check out the facebook invite at http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=198431946880567

Changes in Tax rate

Click to access Siaran%20Akhbar%20Perubahan%20Kadar-Kadar%20Cukai%20(Eng).pdf

In this amendment there are a few changes to customs and excise rates. to be honest I never knew the different between customs duty and excise tax, I thought they come hand in hand. apparently there is a distinction.

Summary:

  • reduction of import and excise duites, to improve industry, t
  • increase price of sugary drinks
  • increase in price of plastics to promote recycling
  • increase in tax rates for mobile phones, leather and fur skin products, video games.
  • assitance for mothers in terms of disposable diapers and breast pumps.

 

Use of card surcharges can be considered fraudelent practices

http://www.bt.com.bn/business-national/2014/03/13/retailers-warned-passing-credit-card-surcharges-customers
To my understanding (someone please confirm), the surcharge is because the shops dont get the minimum sales through cards.
But the irony is, if they have a surcharge or minimum purchase, that would discourage people using cards. So the solution is IF their sales doesn’t reach the minimum in the first place then don’t bother getting the machine, and when you do, teach the cashier to ask cash or card to promote use of cards, even give a discount if necessary. That’s why the banks promote discounts using their cards.
Even small items by several people will add up. My last year lost wallet incident has made me prefer to lose my card rather than my cash, and therefore I would like to use my card more.
The added benefit of accepting cards for a company, is the less risk of the employee stealing the cash. They might steal the card info, but that is a problem relatively traced and fixed. For the employee, no hassle of cash and coins.

image

In conclusion,
-Use card accepting machine if and only if your sales reach the minimum requirement,
-When you do accept cards, on order to reach the minimum sales promote the use of cards through discounts, or promotional items.
-Train the sales/cashier to promote the use of cards.
-Don’t use tactics that will scare customers from using their cards, e.g. surcharges and minimum payments.

SME Guidebook by BEDB

LiveWIRE had a speaker from BruIPO sharing about intellectual property, but he also shared about sources of funding from BEDB. I know they actually produced the following brochure, but I didn’t know they made it available online. So here it is.

or download from the source at http://www.bedb.com.bn/documents/sme/BEDB.SME.Guide.Book(2012).pdf

Update: 2017-04-17

As of 2016 all the grants from bedb and mipr microload from mipr is no more, i will do an updated info blog soon.
Generally mentioning the microgrants still available, and the new sme loans from dare and bibd.

Latest Brunei Statistics Year Book

I was conducting a course on writing a business plan recently, and covering the topics of Market Research and Marketing strategy.

Whilst I was looking up online about brunei statistics, I stumbled upon the Brunei Darussalam Statistic Year Book 2010 at the JPKE Website at http://www.depd.gov.bn/SI/BDSYB2010/BDSYB%202010.pdf

I decided to download it and upload it to scribd to be able to show on this site directly.

 

Brunei Darussalam Statistics Year Book 2010

The Essence of Sales

There is a workshop on Sales in the fasting month. The following are the details.

Workshop Title: The Essence of Sales

Date: 14th August 2011
Time: 8:30am – 5:00pm
Place: LiveWIRE Centre, Development Unit, No 42, 1st Floor, BT-Hj Uthman Complex Spg 13, Jalan Lapangan Terbang Antarabangsa Kg Jaya Setia, Mukim Berakas A Brunei Darussalam BB 2513.

Facebook invite: http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=198431946880567

This workshop doesn’t focus on sales strategy or techniques, instead focuses on the sales persons as an individual to see their relationship with their selling, to identify the blocks, and to find their reason to achieve sales. The facilitator is a Bruneian who has spent the last few several years overseas doing business and Sales. She was interviewed by Brunei Times about the course recently. http://www.bt.com.bn/business-national/2011/08/02/natural-way-sell. The facilitator is only back in Brunei for the fasting month, which then she will return to australia.

The one day course is priced at $415 per person, with an early bird price of rate of $347 per person.

In my opinion. Most Bruneians would find the the cost too pricy, But workshops like these held in singapore, malaysia, US, UK or australia would cost thousands. People who do sales like car dealers, insurance agents, real estate agents, direct sales and MLM distributors will definitely benefit from this course. The sales techniques and strategies are there, they are available from books, internet or some workshops. But for most sales people, it is more of an internal resistance in doing the sale. That is what this workshop helps the salesperson deal with.

 

A course on being a distributor for Chinese Products

A lot of the products we buy nowadays are mostly made in china, from clothing, to computers, and now even cars. I found it interesting that someone created a course on how to be a a distributor of chinese products. the course is entitled “Program Lawatan Sambil Memborong ke China” from the website http://kursusmemborongdichina.blogspot.com/which involves a trip to china and meeting suppliers.

I guess if anyone interested to become a distributor should join the course. Get more information by going to the link mentioned above.

(Note: I am not being paid for directing traffic to this site)

Secrets of Successful Project Management

Did some projects recently, this article at ST Training Solutions › Articles › Secrets of Successful Project Management, would have been helpful. The steps are here simplified:

  1. Know what are the objectives of the project. Know/assign those  who are responsible for the project.
  2. Plan activities to reach those objectives and account for obstacles.
  3. Act on the Plan, change the plan only if necessary and if it is still in line with the objectives.

Currently, I’m trying to understand using the Work Breakdown Structure within Project Management Software. The one’s I’m looking into are MS Project (propriety), and open source programs like OpenProj and Open Workbench and GanttProject. OpenProj has been said to be compatible with MS Project. So I’m looking into that. Anyone has any suggestions?

Learning about Branding at the Local Business Development Forum

I attended the Local Business Development Forum at the Grand Hall of Empire Hotel and Country Club on the 18th November 2010.

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The links to the slides were given to the participants, and since it was made available on the AsiaIncForum Website, I assumed it would be OK for me to upload it to scribd and embed it into SMEbrunei. Unfortunately, the presentation on Branding by Dr. Wilson Chew was not made available. I’ll go through my notes and share them.

Dr Wilson Chew’s presentation on how branding is not just applicable to big corporations, but can also be done by Micro and SME’s. Considering that all big corporations started from SME’s themselves. He further pointed out in rebuttal of a previous discussion on Public Private Partnership is not essential, it only matters that SME’s “Just Move”. His presentation on branding reminded me of a book entitled Origin of the Brand. His 10 Rules of Branding were:

  1. Perception is Reality – Brands are only in people’s minds, and often in terms of those brands logo. and most people remember brand logos very well.
  2. The power of being the first – People remember the first president, the first man on the moon, but rarely remember those that came after thme.
  3. Create a new category – So if you are not the first, you can become the first in a new category. People will remember Barack Obama as the first Black President (should I say coloured?)
  4. Narrow you Focus – Specialization by sacrificing vestigial or unnecessary products will help in focusing your main successful product. E.g. Nokia was originally in almost every electronic equipment, but they prospered when they focused on Mobile Phones.
  5. Differentiate your Brand- Make your Brand different from others out there. Show off what makes it unique or better than the competitors.
  6. Build your brand with PR – PR or Public Relations or Advertisers help SME’s profit by building awareness of the brand.
  7. The power of a great name – brand names should be short, unique, memorable, easy o pronounce and English sounding.
  8. Be absolutely Consistent – do not stray into other categories, as Mercedes had once ventured from luxury cars and into commercial transport (Busess, Trucks, etc) their reputation never really recovered.
  9. You need an Archenemy – Cocal Cola has Pepsi, Adidas Has Nike. Competition between the 1st and 2nd often create free publicity through discussion and debates.
  10. Sometimes you need a 2nd brand – if you are to venture into other categories, create another brand. Toyota tried and failed getting into the Luxury Car segment, but they succeeded when they created another brand in Lexus.

The Brunei Economy by Doctor Roger

MNCs or SMEs: Perspective from Singapore by Professor Tan Kim Song, Singapore Management University

Cashflow 101 on 3rd December 2010

Me and my partner organized a cashflow 101 game at livewire again. This time we pledge to give a book prize for the winner.

Either I was good in explaining the game, or they were fast learners. well 2 out of 4 anyway, the last 2 caught up later in the game. But in the end my partner won the game. The book prize was Kiyosaki‘s latest book – Conspiracy of the Rich.

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At the beginning, I shared the basic of the game, such as:

  • The basics of Financial Statement using a Job Card in the game.
  • The Objective of the game – to increase your passive income to be greater or equal to their expenses in the rat race, and to rich your dream or a higher cashflow in the fast track.
  • What the spaces on the board meant, such as paycheck, opportunities, doodads, Charity, Baby and Downsized meant.
  • During gameplay when the player gets card with a new twist, I explained the meaning of the card and how it would be used as well how it effected their financial statement.
  • Basic Strategy of the game such as buying assets, paying liabilities and using loans.

I skipped on the rules of bankruptcy and only resorted to that if only it happens. even then I would have to refer to the rule book as it really rarely happens. although it happened to me twice a long time ago. :p

The explanation was admittedly slow and long, but I believed with enough knowledge at the beginning, the players will not complain much or give excuses about not knowing about the rules that caused them to “lose”. Some players as usual used the strategy of paying of their liabilities, which I believe slowed them from progressing. Another factor was they had good opportunities (such as $1 or $5 stocks) but did not buy a lot of them. Some players were aware when they had a good deal (a rental property) when the experience players were fighting off to buy it from them, and eventually declined to sell and bought it for themselves instead.

The winner of the game received Kiyosaki’s Latest Book – Conspiracy of the Rich.