SOHO Entrepreneurs Year End Gathering 2012

D.A.R.E BIZSTART 2012 – Kuala Lumpur

Thursday, 27 September 2012

I was honored for being invited by MAD Incubator to be the Panelist & Speaker for D.A.R.E BIZSTART 2012 – Kuala Lumpur. In the morning, I was a panelist in a Panel Discussion titled “Women In The Driver Seat” moderated by Maresa Ng from ActionCoach.

The Panelists for Panel Discussion "Women on the driver seat" From left, Moderator-Ms. Maresa Ng, Ms. Gun, APAC Director – Corporate Sales, Kaspersky Lab, En. Shamshul,, Founder of Usahawan SOHO and Ms. Evelyn, co-founded of Training & Consultancy, Mobile Coach, BizSpace.Asia, BrandAid$

In the afternoon, I presented a talk on “How to start a business with Zero Capital”. Surprisingly, it was almost full-house and the response from the audience was overwhelming.

I met many seasoned and new entrepreneurs here. Sharing notes and also business opportunities. Looking forward DARE BIZSTART 2012 in Penang next month. For those who missed both DARE BIZSTART 2012 in JB & KL, make your way to Penang.

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Posted in Business Success Events by Shamshul The Catalyst. No Comments

Mentors: A Young Entrepreneur’s Secret Weapon

You need a good idea. Startup cash can make a real difference. Business experience and savvy also help, of course. But to take advantage of the most powerful weapon an entrepreneur can have, find a mentor.

A good mentor helps you think through a business idea, suggests ways to generate that startup capital and provides the experience and savvy you’re missing. You’ll get praise when you deserve it and a heads-up when trouble comes — probably long before you would have noticed it yourself.

My grandfather who owned a memorabilia and antique shop in Vancouver, British Columbia, was a natural entrepreneur. He helped my brother Matthew and me launch our first successful venture: selling toy airplanes at a local festival when we were just seven and eight years old. With his help, we developed just the right marketing strategy — putting on a show with the planes that created excitement and a “wow” impact. We sold out of planes in just two hours.

Our first mentor was someone whom we trusted and who cared about our success. He had the knowledge and skills to keep us focused, and he knew a small early success would spur us on to more entrepreneurial attempts. Looking back, I realize he really engineered our first foray into business to build our confidence and help us understand what it’s like to work for ourselves. Even now, nearly 30 years later, Matthew and I find ourselves remembering his advice when we’re planning or making decisions.

Although few entrepreneurs are fortunate enough to have a keen mentor in the family, it is possible to find one or two. Here are eight tips to getting the right mentor — or group of mentors — for you:

  1. Determine your needs. Keeping in mind that your mentoring needs will shift as you start and build your business, take the time to determine exactly what kind of mentor you want now. Are you having trouble with the numbers, understanding your market or operations? Are you ready to ramp up production or still playing with concepts? Build a wish list for your mentor — laying out what skills and support you need to get to the next step.
  2. Take time to network. Networking isn’t just important for finding customers. It’s also vital for finding a mentor. Who do you want helping you? Someone who sits in an office and thinks connecting with the business community means reading a couple of magazines a month? No, you want someone who’s out there, knows the market and can point you in the right direction.
  3. Listen more, talk less. Given your youthful enthusiasm for entrepreneurship, it may be hard to stay silent. But to find a mentor, you need to listen — a lot. Pay attention and you‘ll be able to separate the smart potential mentors from those who just use all the right words.
  4. Be “mentorable.” If you come off as someone who knows everything — or thinks you do — many people will back away. If you want to learn, be willing to consider ideas that may not match your expectations or opinions. Above all, don’t fall victim to your own hype. Your business may or may not have serious problems, but another viewpoint will help you sort things out.
  5. Remain flexible. You may have mentors who stay with you over the long haul, but you will also benefit from people who provide just an afternoon of insightful ideas. If you are fortunate enough to get time with someone who is rarely available, absorb all you can and take notes. Your mentor may be skilled only in one specific area, but that’s okay. All help is good help.
  6. Don’t overlook nontraditional mentors. Some mentors may help you without their knowledge through books, seminars, speeches, videos on Ted, TV programs and the internet. My brother and I always looked to Richard Branson as one of our mentors. We don’t have to meet him in person to appreciate all he provides to entrepreneurs and others all over the world.
  7. Thank your mentors. When people help you, intentionally or unintentionally, let them know. Mentors are not in it for the money; they just want to help others grow. Think about what you can do to let them know how much you appreciate them and their help.
  8. Pay it forward. You may never be able to pay your mentors back, but you can recognize what they’ve done for you by becoming a mentor to others. That’s one reason we started to support those who share our dreams and goals.

    Adam Toren is a serial entrepreneur, mentor, investor and co-founder of He is co-author, with his brother Matthew, of the forthcoming Small Business, BIG Vision: Lessons on How to Dominate Your Market from Self-Made Entrepreneurs Who Did it Right (Wiley, Sept. 13, 2011). He’s based in Phoenix, Ariz.

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Posted in Business Success Mentor by Shamshul The Catalyst. No Comments

Seminar Keusahawanan SOHO in Kota Bahru

SOHO Entrepreneurship Seminar, Series 1 (April 2011)

organized by


supported by

Kementerian Pembangunan Wanita, Keluarga dan Masyarakat.



Seminar Keusahawanan SOHO in Pulau Pinang

SOHO Entrepreneurship Seminar, Series 2 (May 2011)

organized by


supported by

Kementerian Pembangunan Wanita, Keluarga dan Masyarakat.

Posted in SOHO Entrepreneurship by SOHOadmin. No Comments

Seminar Keusahawanan SOHO in Kuala Lumpur

Seminar Keusahawanan SOHO 2011

SOHO Entrepreneurship Seminar, Series 3 (June 2011)

organized by

Wawasanita supported by Kementerian Pembangunan Wanita, Keluarga dan Masyarakat.


by Brian Tracy

After having studied top achievers and peak performers over the past 35 years, I’ve concluded that these unique men and women, have in most cases, mastered what I call the Seven C’s of Success.

  1. Clarity: Eighty percent of success comes from being clear on who you are, what you believe in and what you want.
  2. Competence: You can’t climb to the next rung on the ladder until you are excellent at what you do now.
  3. Constraints: Eighty percent of all obstacles to success come from within. Find out what is constraining in you or your company and deal with it.
  4. Concentration: The ability to focus on one thing single-mindedly and see it through until it’s done takes more character than anything else.
  5. Creativity: Flood your life with ideas from many sources. Creativity needs to be exercised like a muscle; if you don’t use it you’ll lose it.
  6. Courage: Most in demand and least in supply, courage is the willingness to do the things you know are right.
  7. Continuous learning: Read, at the very least, one book a week on business to keep you miles ahead of the competition. And just as you eat and bathe, organize your time so you spend 30 minutes a day exploring email, sending messages, going through websites, because like exercise, it’s the only way you can keep on top of technology. If you get away from it, you’ll lose your edge.

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Posted in Business Success by Shamshul The Catalyst. No Comments

Tips to choose a profitable SOHO business opportunity

Here are 6 tips that will help you to choose a SOHO business opportunity.

1. Explore various business options before choosing one.

2. Choose a business that is profitable as well as personally satisfying.

3. Draw a layout to check whether or not the work area fits into your allocated home-space.

4. Decide whether or not you’ll be able to handle every aspect of your home business on your own.

5. You should select a business whose organizational characteristics are compatible with your family members.

6. Involve your family members in your business to achieve enviable success.

While choosing your home based business opportunity, it is quite important that you do proper research and don’t start it just on impulse. This is the key to long term success with any home business that you decide to start.

Source: Homebuilder-guide

Right Attitude leads to Success

Attitude is Everything

The process of human change begins within us. We all have tremendous potential. We all desire good results from our efforts. Most of us are willing to work hard and to pay the price that success and happiness demand.

Each of us has the ability to put our unique human potential into action and to acquire a desired result. But the one thing that determines the level of our potential that produces the intensity of our activity, and predicts the quality of the result we receive, is our attitude.

Attitude determines how much of the future we are allowed to see. It decides the size of our dreams and influences our determination when we are faced with new challenges. No other person on earth has dominion over our attitude. People can affect our attitude by teaching us poor thinking habits or unintentionally misinforming us or providing us with negative sources of influence, but no one can control our attitude unless we voluntarily surrender that control.

No one else “makes us angry.” We make ourselves angry when we surrender control of our attitude. What others may have done is irrelevant. We choose, not they. They merely put our attitude to a test. If we select a volatile attitude by becoming hostile, angry, jealous or suspicious, then we have failed the test. If we condemn ourselves by believing that we are unworthy, then again, we have failed the test.

If we care at all about ourselves, then we must accept full responsibility for our own feelings. We must learn to guard against those feelings that have the capacity to lead our attitude down the wrong path and to strengthen those feelings that can lead us confidently into a better future.

If we want to receive the rewards the future holds in trust for us, then we must exercise the most important choice given to us as members of the human race by maintaining total dominion over our attitude. Our attitude is an asset, a treasure of great value, which must be protected accordingly. Beware of the vandals and thieves among us who would injure our positive attitude or seek to steal it away.

Having the right attitude is one of the basics that success requires. The combination of a sound personal philosophy and a positive attitude about ourselves gives us an inner strength and a firm resolve that influences all the other areas of our existence.

by Jim Rohn

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Posted in Personal Development by Shamshul The Catalyst. No Comments

Seven Ways Solopreneurs Can Grow a Home Business

BY Carol Tice| April 6, 2011|

Home-based businesses with a sole owner can only grow so much, right? Wrong.

With a little creativity you can keep expanding your home business, without hiring employees or renting an office. Here are seven tips for increasing revenue at your home business while keeping it a one-person show:

1. Use technology. From scheduling newsletters and social-media dispatches to issuing blog-post notifications via email, automate as much as possible. Collaboration tools such as Citrix Systems software can also help you readily pass off or work in the same document with colleagues and consultants without having to send giant email attachments or deal with a courier service. Additionally, video conferencing or call forwarding technology can do wonders for helping your little company appear much bigger — and more professional.
2. Outsource. These days, freelance marketplaces such as Elance and make it easy — and relatively inexpensive — to find contractors for a wide variety of roles, from accountants to virtual secretaries. There’s no law that says you have to make official, full-time hires to grow. Increasingly, I’m encountering high-revenue, fast-growing companies that have few, if any, official staffers and are driving growth entirely through contract labor.

3. Watch for opportunities. Entrepreneurs’ prime advantage over big companies is the ability to be nimble and shift gears quickly if a new opportunity emerges that might lead to more business. That’s what home-based franchisor Patricia Beckman did when she saw a need for a standardized virtual-assistant chain. Now her VA business, Cybertary, has 25 franchisees and is growing.

4. Treat your business like a business. Don’t neglect the back-office end of your business. For instance, consider using an online invoice system such as FreshBooks or Intuit’s Bill Manager. Being able to systematically track your payments and expenses will not only save you time, it’s also more professional in the eyes of customers or clients. Keep regular business hours so clients can rely on you.

5. Invest for growth. Yes, being home based can help reduce overhead, but you still need to put money into the business to keep it thriving. After all, you’ve got to spend money to make money, remember? And that’s true no matter where your business is based.

6. Don’t forget your plan. Know your goals for the business and keep your focus on the steps you need to take to achieve those goals. Beckman recommends keeping your business plan nearby and referring to it often. And as plans change, update it.

7. Get out there. Some solopreneurs use being home-based as an excuse to never meet with clients in person. That’s a mistake. Get out of that home-office cave — you can build stronger bonds with clients in face-to-face meetings. Attend networking events to keep growing your rolodex and gain exposure to new ideas.