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I am a firm believer that one of the solutions to our country’s economic woes is that more of us should start a small business and be self-sustaining. With the advent of the internet, business can even start online.
Women entrepreneurs are an ever-growing part of the economy, and one of the best opportunities to start is through online selling on your own platform or using one like eBay. I had the opportunity to talk to eBay Philippines a few weeks back. I discovered that eBay Philippines provided our women to run successful businesses right in the comfort of their own homes.
Normally, I just let my dollar earnings sit in the bank because I am lazy to visit the bank and have them converted to pesos. Banks also have silly rules on dollar withdrawals. Anyway, the good side on all this is I am able to save for a rainy day. However, the strong peso got me thinking. I started to convert my dollars on “what could have been” at the old exchange rate and the current rates. I refuse to think of “what could have beens” because I should be grateful that I am still liquid. After reading Abe Olandres’ Weakening Dollar hurts Probloggers, I started to think that maybe I need to spend a little more.
That’s a net loss of Php13.13 for every dollar that I have in the bank. That loss closely amounts to a brand new car or a down payment for a house and lot.
Ugh, I did lose a lot on the conversion.
So what did I do? Oh yeah, I went on a mad shopping spree for Christmas presents.
I was 42 years old and reading the “Working Mom” magazine. I wanted to get back to the corporate world or do research work like I used to do or so I thought. Armed with an MBA, it shouldn’t be a problem, right? Reality sank in that Filipino employers never or rarely hire women past thirty five years old. Look at the classified ads…”not more than 30 years old”…or “not more than 40 years old” as if age diminishes our mental faculties. The problem was I quit the workforce at the age of 30 years old to devote the full time homemaker role to my three children. Those lost years deprived my exposure to business trends and development. I had a part time job though. During those 10 years, I devoted my brains to my husband’s family properties as he could not attend to it. He was a budding lawyer tied down to a law firm. He literally dropped his property management role to me. I had no choice but support his wishes as we derived substantial income from it too.
To add to my credentials, I acquired a license in real estate brokerage in 1989. Things didn’t work out in the end because of misunderstandings which I’d rather not explain further. I resigned in 1998 much to the disappointment of my father-in-law.
I knew I needed something else. A job?
I could get a job through network of friends but what was my specialty? The past years saw me dabbling with the internet and web site development. I was out of the loop in the corporate world.
On that fateful day , I read this article about moms who quit their jobs and went into business. There were 3 women who started a business because they were tired of working
So that was it! Start a business. But what kind of business?