How To Get Your Loved One A Gift That’s Personally Picked This Christmas

With an 80% increase in gifting during the pandemic lockdown period, this female-founded Aussie gifting startup, PersonallyPicked has seen exponential growth over the past year. Demand continues to grow for unique and fabulous gift options for loved ones being sent, “just because”.

As the name suggests, PersonallyPicked allows customers to curate the perfect gift for their friend, colleague, or loved one, selecting from over 150 incredible gift options. For those more indecisive or in need of a little gifting inspo – there are ready-made gift boxes for a quick solution.

That said, PersonallyPicked says that over 95% of their customers choose to build their own personalised gift box – offering a gift that, as the name states, is personally picked for them.

Some of the most popular gift items during the current lockdowns have included drinks such as Melbourne Martini cocktails in a jar, Just a Glass Wines, and T2 teas, as Aussies enjoy a tipple or two from home – be it toasty and warm, or fresh and fruity.

Additionally, people are spreading the fun, with activity-related gifts rising in popularity during the lockdown. Many Australians are sending Journey of Something puzzles, quiz games, and cocktail recipe books to keep people entertained at home. It seems we’re also quite keen to pamper friends and family with beauty and wellness products such as the Aunty Honey Heat Packs, Lapcos Face Masks, and Huxter Bath Salts in rather high demand.

PersonallyPicked Co-Founder Samantha Lynn said, “Customers are sending gifts not for any particular occasion, but just because loved ones were going through difficult times and as a way to re-connect and bring joy. We have also had a huge uplift in corporate clients and businesses organising gifts for their staff who were working hard in lockdown at home, which is really great to see.”

Over the last 12 months, PersonallyPicked has seen a 250% increase in sales, with the online gifting trend seeing no sign of slowing down.

PersonallyPicked offers a range of bright, colourful, and unique packaging options that stand out from the crowd. The best part, each gift box is personalised with the recipient’s name for the ultimate personalised experience.

For more information or to order your own PersonallyPicked gift box, head to: www.personallypicked.com.au

Meet The Shepreneur Behind The Cover Of The October 2021 Issue Of MoneyCentral Magazine: Em Hardwicke

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It took Em Hardwicke 40 years and the birth of her beautiful son to be truly comfortable in her own self, to love the person she is, and to be proud of her achievements and successes in life. Em’s son is her world. He is what inspires and motivates Em every day and she wants her son to know that anything is possible with passion, determination, and hard work.

It is this passion, determination, and hard work that has got her through some tough times and has given her the strength and courage to take on some big dreams and physical challenges over the years. She has trekked Kokoda, Everest Base Camp, Mont Blanc, Mt Meru and Mt Kilimanjaro. She has also competed in several ultra-marathons including the Ultra-Trail Australia 50km and 100km. She does these things, not to stand on a podium or to break any records – but to remind herself of what she is capable of and of the beauty this world has to offer. Doing these things reminds Em to always be the best version of herself.

For Em, like for so many others, 2020 was a year never to be forgotten… Australia battled the Snowy Mountains bushfires in January then COVID in March which saw her get stood down from her job and ultimately made redundant – leaving her without work and her family not knowing what was next.

Not one to let a setback deter her from achieving her goals, She refocussed and at the age of 46, after 25 years in Event Management, she’s now embarking on a career in Real Estate and Property Management, which is exciting for her giving her a new focus. However, she also couldn’t let all of her knowledge and experience in event management go to waste, so she took the opportunity to rebrand and relaunch. Hence, her Event Management Consulting business, Meraki Events and Public Relations as well as The Meraki Academy of Personal Development and Coaching were born.

MoneyCentral magazine recently caught up with Em to discuss her journey as an entrepreneur and here’s what went down:

When did your entrepreneurial flair first reveal itself?

I have always had determination and have always been a bit of a self-starter, but I guess my entrepreneurial flair first revealed itself after a stint living and working overseas and when I returned home to Australia there wasn’t much full-time work available within my industry. So I decided to set up my own business and freelance – this gave me a lot of flexibility and the opportunity to take on a number of projects at the same time and really diversify my skills and experience in different areas, making me more employable and more valuable within the Event Management industry.

In addition to working full time, I have four small businesses of my own… Meraki Events & Public Relations, The Meraki Academy of Personal Development & Coaching, Soul Purpose Body Products, and Jindy Treats.

Photographed by: STUDIO 49 / TONY PALLISER 2021

How did your life look like before being an entrepreneur?

I have always loved being busy and have always loved having variety in my days and in my work, so I think the biggest change I noticed when working for myself was the ability to be able to choose the projects I wanted to work on and the variety that my workdays took on.

As an entrepreneur, what is it that motivates and drives you?

Definitely the rewarding feeling when you pitch and land a new client… or when a new retailer chooses to take on your product. But I think the biggest motivator for me is customer satisfaction. I have always said that customer satisfaction is paramount to my success. If my customers and clients aren’t happy or aren’t satisfied with my work or my products, then I am not doing my job!

In one word, describe your life as an entrepreneur and explain why.

Passionate and Determined! Okay, so I know that is two words, but I truly believe I have passion and determination in equal measure.

It has not always been an easy ride and there have been disappointments along the way, but I have always got up, dusted myself off, and landed on my feet and I know it is my passion and determination that has allowed me to do that.

Photographed by: STUDIO 49 / TONY PALLISER 2021

What were your top three motivations for starting your business?

Circumstance, necessity, and opportunity… that combined with absolutely loving what I do and doing what I love.

What do you put your success down to?

Passion, determination, hard work, and a strong work ethic. It is also important to know your clients and be clear on the services and/or products you have to offer. Don’t spread yourself too thin – you are better off being really good at some things than mediocre at many things.

What would you say are the key elements for starting and running a successful business?

For me, it was all about having a clear plan about the products/services each of my businesses was to focus on and a clear target market. Without clarity, there is no direction. Without direction, you have no destination. I once read a quote that has stuck with me and always reminds me what is missing when I find myself stuck, or in a rut.

“Clarity has purpose and strength and brings with it the undeniable ability to move forthwith into our chosen direction.”

This is when I stop, reflect, refocus and gain the clarity I need to move forward.

Photographed by: STUDIO 49 / TONY PALLISER 2021

What are the three biggest challenges you have faced growing the business and how did you overcome them?

I think there are always different challenges at different times. When I first started my business, my biggest challenge was getting my foot in the door and getting people to take a chance on me, particularly if I was completely unknown to them.

Another challenge for me was not selling myself short or undercutting myself just to get a job – you have to know your worth and be able to sell that to a prospective client.

Overcoming these challenges was a challenge in itself as it largely came down to believing in myself and not taking the knockbacks and lost contracts personally.

I found as I won pitches and landed contracts, the door opened a little wider each time. I also did a lot of research about salaries, wages, and contract rates, and how to quote a job fairly so the client felt they were getting great service at a rate that was affordable, but I was also still charging at a rate that I knew I was worth for the work I was doing.

Knowledge and confidence was a big factor in overcoming these challenges.

Knowing the market, knowing your worth, and being confident in your ability.

Does the loneliness of the entrepreneur really exist? Is there such a thing?

I have never found entrepreneurship a lonely venture. Perhaps this is because I have always surrounded myself with a lot of people and have also, more often than not, had another job to give me some stability and human interaction while I have been starting and building my businesses.

Photographed by: STUDIO 49 / TONY PALLISER 2021

As you grew the business, what have been some of the most important leadership lessons you have learned?

Be clear on what your definition of success is for your business and do what is necessary to achieve those successes. Your definition of success will always change as the business grows, but so too does the plan and actions needed to achieve the new goals set for yourself and for your business.

My businesses are still small and all still growing at a pace I am happy and comfortable with. One of the biggest lessons I have learned along the way is to never let my business become bigger than I can, or want to, handle. I always remind myself that a business doesn’t have to be BIG conglomerates to be successful.

The other important leadership lesson I learned at a very young age, and one I apply to all aspects of my life. Always treat people the way you would like to be and would expect to be treated, and NEVER ask someone to do something you wouldn’t be willing to do yourself.

What do you hope to see happen in the near future for small businesses all over the world?

I truly believe small business needs to be nurtured and supported. There is absolutely a place in society and the world for big business and multi-national firms and operations, but I also believe that big businesses and multi-national firms are not the place for everyone, and nor should they be.

The pandemic has, in the blink of an eye, totally destroyed so many small businesses around the world and destroyed the lives of the people whose blood, sweat, and tears have gone into building these businesses.

I would love to see some of the big businesses and multi-national firms around the world, whose businesses have remained largely unaffected by the global pandemic, establish a series of small business grants to support many of these small businesses re-establish and re-build. There are a lot of amazing business minds in this world whose businesses have failed, by no fault of their own. Small business is an important part of society and all contribute to a country’s economy, but do not have the support and backing of deep pockets to keep them afloat when times get tough.

Photographed by: STUDIO 49 / TONY PALLISER 2021

4 Home-Based Business Ideas That’ll Let You Work From Home

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With the rise of home-based business opportunities as a result of the pandemic, more and more people are discovering ways to become entrepreneurs with their businesses based at home. Generally, if you’re resourceful enough, you can easily start working on your business ideas from home using your existing space and means. People create many types of businesses to operate from home and we’ll cover some of the most popular ideas here:

Virtual / In-Person Teacher

  • Music teacher: teach an instrument such as guitar, violin, or piano. Plan to offer your services on different teaching platforms and offer private lessons as well as group lessons.
  • Dance teacher: teach modern dance, ballet, or ballroom dancing. Offer different types of schedules for kids and adults. It is important you have all the proper equipment so your online lessons look highly professional.
  • Art teacher: teach drawing and illustration, painting, or sculpture. Define which are technique you are best at and create a schedule of all the different hours available you have.
  • Language instructor: teach Spanish, Chinese, Latin, or French. Be sure you completely dominate the language you are planning to teach.
  • Tutor: Tutor either elementary or high school students in subjects that you are degreed in, such as math, English, or chemistry.
  • Yoga instructor: teach virtual yoga and meditation techniques.
  • Blogging: Whether you decide to become a blogger and create new and rich content there are many ways to make money blogging. Creating your own blog can be a different and fun activity where you will be able to experiment with your creativity.
  • Freelancing photography: Consider the type of photography you want to do and what are the most popular requirements needed from your potential clients.

E-commerce Seller

You can operate an e-commerce company from your home. You can purchase products in bulk and sell them online. You’ll partner with a warehouse where your products will be shipped from. You can also perform all services related to e-commerce and expand as you need to. When choosing products, consider how much space you’ll need to accommodate this type of operation.

Homemade Products

Many home-based business owners sell products that they create, such as:

  • Candles: A candle company may be the best business for anyone passionate about wicks, soy blends, and achieving the perfect scent. You can offer soy candles, scented candles, beeswax candles, paraffin candles, and more.
  • Baked goods: Bakeries have been around for a long time, but recently they have grown in popularity. Entrepreneurs have taken their cakes, cupcakes, and cookies from home and open regular bakeries and restaurants, and even franchises that make. Creating cupcakes, artisan bread,  cookies, wedding cakes, and more could be a great way to start.
  • Jewelry: Making people’s personalities come alive through jewelry is a very fulfilling creative pursuit. Think about creating beaded bracelets, necklaces, earrings, rings. etc.
  • Essential oils offer many opportunities for creativity and reward. Own a business or buy wholesale oils to resell on your own.
  • A lot of people know how to knit, but it’s generally considered a new fad or lost art. It’s not clear to them how to make money with it. You can start by creating hats, scarves, mittens, or sweaters.

Services

You may base your business on providing services to customers either in person or online depending on the services you offer, which might include:

  • Makeup tutorials: Teaching how to properly use makeup and providing some confidence tips might be a loving activity, not only for you but also for your potential clients. Even showing how to apply lashes properly would be a great way to get started.
  • Dog walking: Taking care of furry babies and just having a long walk outdoors could definitely bring you great benefits.
  • Personal trainer: While training for your own personal goals, you are also helping others to achieve theirs.
  • Virtual assistant: if organizing and scheduling your day is a passion of yours, you should definitely offer these services to people that don’t have that same passion or patience as you do.
  • Clients of personal shoppers usually buy clothing and accessories for themselves. A personal shopper may work directly for a client or their stylist; other personal shopper employment is available through boutiques and departments stores.
  • Housecleaner: This is a great opportunity if you are passionate about cleaning and decluttering. These services have a high demand.

A curious fact, Recently India has become the hotspot for foreigners for starting an Indian Subsidiary and Ebizfiling is a one-stop solution for a Company Registration in India by a foreigner. Know the benefits of starting a business in India.

Home Office Essentials

When developing your business, you’ll want to create a home office where you can ‘set up shop’ and manage all the important aspects of operating your business. Here are some home office essentials to consider:

Good Lighting

Be sure that you have good lighting so that you can work without straining your eyes. You may want to have better overhead lighting installed by an electrician. Or, you can add more lamps to the space to ensure that you have great lighting even on dark and dreary days.

Adjustable Desk

An adjustable desk is ideal for a home office. You can use your desk for various tasks that may be related to your business.  A standup desk is also a great feature if you’re concerned about fitness. You’ll burn more calories by standing up to work.

Comfortable Furniture

Try to invest in a quality ergonomic office chair. You’ll be spending a lot of time in your home office, so be sure to have comfortable and supportive furnishings for yourself and anyone else who may be working with you. You may also need filing cabinets, a workbench, or other furnishings related to the type of work you perform.

Decor

Office decor may not seem essential, but it can enhance your mood each day. Remember, your office is your place of work. Decorate it in a way that inspires and motivates you to be productive. Although you don’t want to add much in the way of clutter, some thoughtful decorative pieces will add personal warmth to your office.

Plants

House plants can make your home office feel cozy and welcoming. However, that’s not all. Many houseplants feature air-purifying properties. Add plants to your office space like aloe vera or spider plants to keep the air smelling clean and fresh. Consider plants of various sizes to add a dynamic look to the space.

Equipment

You’ll likely need basic office equipment and may require other equipment or gear related to your products or services. For instance, if you perform sewing services, you will need a high-quality sewing machine. Typically, you’ll need office equipment such as:

  • Computer or laptop
  • Internet (consider business internet service) pocket wifi could also be a great option.
  • Business Phone
  • Printer
  • Copy machine
  • Headphones
  • Adding machine/calculator
  • Postage scale

These are just a few ideas. You’ll need to brainstorm to ensure you have all the equipment you need for your operation.

Quiet Space

When laying out your office, be sure to choose a space with an adequate room as well as an area where you can work without interruption. If you live in a bustling household, you’ll need a place where you can work without distractions. A quiet space away from children or the television room would be ideal.

Office Bar

Although you can always visit your kitchen, you might want to create an office bar where you have a coffee maker, healthy snacks, and even a small refrigerator to keep water or other beverages cold. This way, you can keep your work items separate from the household’s supplies.

Use these tips to create your home business. Be sure to give yourself adequate time to address each aspect of your business’s development. Once your business is up and rolling, you’ll also want to consult with an accountant to ensure that you understand your tax obligations.

Source: Porch

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

The Surefire Guide To Starting And Successfully Running A Home Business

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Some of today’s most prominent businesses were started at home, and many of today’s successful business owners are content to operate their businesses from their home office, garage, or on-site warehouse. 

A small business may be defined as a “privately owned corporation, partnership, or sole proprietorship with fewer employees and less annual revenue than a corporation or regular-sized business.” Therefore, a small home business can be defined as such; only its operation occurs at the proprietor’s residence or in the residential setting of one of the employees. 

Many people decide to start a small home business to earn extra income or simply to go into business for themselves. Many small businesses are run from homes today, ranging from financial consulting and baking to salon services and tutoring. Whether you’re interested in selling products or providing services from your home, the following information will help you get started and probably answer some questions you might have and know some pros and cons. Of course, if you have little ones at home, starting a business alongside them can be a challenge – but not impossible! Parenting while working from home can actually be enjoyable, while also setting a positive example for your children to learn from.

Benefits and Advantages of a Home-Based Business

If you’re thinking about launching a home business, you’ll want to explore the many enjoyable advantages and benefits. In fact, many of these benefits persuade people to start a home business in the first place. 

Time with Family

Many people prefer to work from home so that they can be around for the family. Small business owners can be on-site to keep an eye on older relatives who may need occasional assistance. They can be at home when children are let out of school, and they can enjoy flexible hours to quickly leave home and attend kids’ events like after-school track meets or basketball games. Even if you are a “pet parent,” staying at home jobs or starting your own business will be ideal for taking care and sharing more time with the people you love or your furry loved ones. 

Zero Commute Time

The average American spends an hour per day commuting to and from work. That adds up to 20 hours per week. Many people spend even more time commuting, enduring the stress of heavy traffic, inclement weather, and crowded busses or trains. There is also the substantial cost associated with work commutes. Being at home will reduce these extra costs since you will be able to cook and eat at home, avoid traffic, lower your gas budget or any other transportation budget. This would be the perfect time to start eating clean and having a healthy diet, adding more activities that will keep you productive such as meditating instead of being stuck in traffic. 

Save on Commercial Rent

When you run your business from home, you can save the cost of rent. If you operate your business in a commercial space, you’d be required to pay rent as well as utilities and insurance. You can avoid this type of overhead by operating your business online from your home. You can reinvest the money you save on commercial rent back into your business in some other form, such as digital marketing

Multitask between Your Professional and Personal Lives

While it may take some practice to juggle tasks associated with your business and personal life skillfully, you can undoubtedly multitask when running a home business. You can break from your work to throw in a load of laundry or prep for dinner on your lunch break. You can create a daily dynamic schedule that includes tasks related to your business and household needs. Moreover, you may easily fit a wide range of tasks into your day without the commute time, such as exercising.

Be More Productive

Because your business belongs to you, you’re likely to feel a tremendous investment in its success. So, you’re apt to work hard and be highly productive. Moreover, there won’t be any other employees (unless you decide to hire them) or a boss around to distract you from your tasks. Consequently, you can more easily stick to your workday plans. When you run your own business, you can set your own goals in terms of productivity and develop the strategies to achieve them that work best for you. You definitely are able to become your own boss! A great way to get started would be creating a schedule you know you will follow every day. It must have realistic metrics so you can stay motivated throughout this new journey. While making your schedule, you might want to add some household activities that might take around 15 minutes to complete or maybe just take an outdoor walk or read that book you have purchased and haven’t had the chance to open it—organizing your agenda and working at home will a great experience. It doesn’t matter if you are a morning or evening person.

Getting Started

Starting a business is an exciting prospect, but there are a lot of details to address. By staying organized and tackling all necessary tasks, you can set your business model up for a successful launch.

Define Your Business

Take time to define your business clearly. Will you sell products, services, or both? Although you may already have a good idea of what you want to do, you’ll want to think in terms of specifics once you’re serious about starting a small home business. Take time to brainstorm through some ideas and make a list of the possibilities you’re most interested in pursuing. Once you have a shortlist, you can research your options and take a look at the marketplace to determine if there’s a need for your offerings. Take into consideration also what are you good at, baking, cooking, singing, tutoring, numbers, dropshipping, etc. this will help you to keep motivated and have a business project that you will enjoy and won’t see it as a boring work task that you just have to perform. 

Brainstorm Your Business Name

Take time to choose a business name carefully. You’ll want to choose a name that’s easy for customers to spell and remember. It makes sense to select a web-friendly name in this digital age and nothing too similar to your competitors’ names. While there are business name-generating apps available that you can try, you might also want to make a list of possible names for your business and run them past family and friends to get their thoughts. You can even ask your close friends and family to suggest options as a way of helping you brainstorm.

Identify Your Target Audience

Who are you trying to sell to? Defining your target audience, whether it’s local homeowners or teenagers nationwide, will help you market your business effectively. When you have a target demographic in mind, you can create more targeted strategies for engaging potential customers. Therefore, you must identify your product or service’s target audience before you begin marketing efforts for the brand. The group will include existing customers as well as potential customers.  

Your target market does not necessarily consist of everyone who may be interested in your products. It’s important to identify the people you want to reach through your brand marketing efforts, whether you’re using digital marketing campaigns or advertisements or on social media channels.

Understanding your target audience and their pain points allows you to create content more effectively and target advertisements with the right marketing message for each segment.

Develop Your Business Plan

Creating a business plan is a crucial step for developing your home business. It can include every aspect of your business, guiding both its launch and operation. Some key elements of your business plan should include:

  • Company description: provide a summary of what your company does. Company descriptions give an overview of key aspects of your business, such as what you do and what sets you apart from the competition. Your business description should clearly explain what you do.
  • Breakdown of your products and services: The product or service section of your business plan should emphasize the value you offer clients or customers.
  • Executive summary: provide a formal business summary, one that could appear in professional business directories.
  • Marketing and sales plan: describe how you intend to market your company (i.e., digital and traditional sales measures)
  • Competitive analysis: analyze the marketplace you intend to operate in; know how you fit in and who your competitors are. 
  • Operating plan: describe how you plan to run your business and list company departments and managing personnel.

Financial Considerations

You’ll need to carefully evaluate your finances and develop a budget related to your startup expenses and business operation. Don’t forget to add in costs for items like marketing, insurance, and other necessities associated with the types of products or services you’ll sell. Determine whether or not you’ll need to apply for a business loan. For entrepreneurs who are starting new businesses, personally funded venture capital is often the first thing they consider. While this is common at the beginning, it is essential to separate your personal and professional funds when your business is growing and earning cash, not only for tax purposes but also to protect your credit and eliminate unnecessary stress.

Legal Business Structure

Take time to determine your business’s legal stature and structure. Do you intend to own your business as a private proprietor or to create a corporation? Learn about the different structures and decide which is best suited for you and your business.

Business Licensure

What type of license will you need to operate your business? Be sure to calculate the cost of your license into your startup costs. Although there are general business licenses, there are also specialty licenses that may apply to your business. Check here to learn more about specific types of business licenses.

Branding Campaign

Marketing is essential for any business but definitely a home business. You won’t have the benefit of being in a commercial area where you can post commercial signage. You’ll need to create a marketing plan that includes both traditional and digital marketing initiatives. Branding is the idea that if you display a positive message about your company to enough people for long enough, they’ll think about you when it’s time to make a purchase.

Source: Porch.com

Photo by RODNAE Productions from Pexels

Meet The Entrepreneur Behind The Cover Of The September 2021 Issue Of MoneyCentral Magazine: Danish Sayanee

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A veteran entrepreneur, Danish Sayanee is an internationally published author with 3 books published under his name on platforms such as Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Simon & Schuster. He is known for his innovative developments and affiliations in technology and STEAM/STEM integration at the school level – some of these affiliations include Microsoft, Google, STEM-ED Coalition, Common-Sense Education, and more. On top of that, he’s also the co-founder and director of the Institute of Excellence in Learning and Teaching.

A highly sought-after trainer, Danish is an internationally certified and licensed TESOL trainer from the Arizona University; he’s Pakistan’s very first CommonSense Educator, and he’s a Cambridge English trained agent which entails him to counsel students, teachers, and professionals on the importance of Cambridge English Certification. In fact, he has incredibly trained 3000 individuals including teachers, students, and other professionals. Danish also happens to be the first National Geographic Educator in Pakistan.

Danish has completed Business and Leadership Management from the Michigan University and he is also a Microsoft Educator, Adobe’s Master Trainer, and Intel’s Technology Partner, who’s currently working on his Teacher Training Licensing Program from London Teacher Training College OFQUAL Affiliated program.

MoneyCentral Magazine recently caught up with Danish to discuss his journey to entrepreneurship and here’s what went down:

What are your standards for success? Is it a certain dollar figure?

My benchmarks for success are not measured by anything especially not by the monetary success of a man. I have set the standards of my success on two principles:

1. Your Effort should match your vision
2. Be true to your vision

I have stuck by these principles, worked hard, tried my level best not to deviate from my vision, and climb ascend Mount Success.

What do you think made you successful in business?

I was born not to be the sort of person who can comply with the rules that others set for him, rather, from an early age, I have been able to make people do what I wanted them to do, I feel that this being able to delegate, and process who does what best is a key factor that made me successful in business. Another thing is the fact that I can jump from the mountains but I can still stick to a vision. Often, businesses simply fail, or people running them fail because they lose sight of their vision.

How would you define true entrepreneurship?

The truest form of entrepreneurship is when a person can identify a true social gap and fill it up with a unique and innovative idea.

What inspired you to develop your idea?

I have always been a compassionate person by nature, this enables me to look at society from a unique perspective and this is the very perspective that I am able to translate into ideas. So far, my analysis of societal needs has been pretty much on point, and I hope that this will continue to be the case.

What were the main challenges you faced at the early stages of your business? And do you still encounter them to this day?

Challenges have and will always be part of my life, they are part of every person’s life. In Pakistan, the situation for budding entrepreneurs is tough, it is cutthroat most of the time. Some of the major challenges I have faced is the lack of investment availability, people are not willing to invest in businesses that will reap a profit in the long run but at a steady pace. Nowadays, people want instant gratification when it comes to reaping their investments.

What keeps you going even in hard times?

Interesting question! I guess the fear of failure is a huge motivator for me that keeps me going but another motivator is that I am a largely stubborn human being and hate giving up, this keeps me going on.

What are your thoughts on entrepreneurship for young people especially in an economy where jobs are harder to find?

Unlike what many people believe, entrepreneurship hasn’t arrived, it is here to stay, and entrepreneurship is the element that will create opportunities for Generation Z.

What strategies did you first use to market your business?

Hah! You will probably laugh when you hear what I have to say on this. I had no ideas about marketing strategies in those days, I had no idea how a business was supposed to be run. I relied heavily on social media platforms to spread our word and to introduce the business and promote it. As time went by, we invested in paid marketing and again we had no idea how it actually worked! In the end, all I can be grateful for is that our wild guesswork paid off.

How have your priorities changed from when you first started?

No, I guess not, my priorities have not drastically evolved over the years, but I have realized that for a man to succeed in a business, he needs to learn to give as much leverage to his team as they deserve, and not let them take advantage of you. I have always prioritized empathy and sustainability and have tried to ensure that I achieve the two.

Knowing what you know now, is there anything you would have done differently when you were first starting out?

Nah! I think I wouldn’t have succeeded as much as I have if I go back and undo my learning opportunities, I have grown and matured with time and my mistakes, my missed chances, even the moments of despair have taught me to be a better man and an even better entrepreneur.

Three Blogs On Managed Funds Every Entrepreneur Should Be Reading

We know you’re time-poor so why not start out by just checking out three website links we’ve picked below? They’re worth the few minutes it takes to see whether they’re useful to you.

1. Paul Clitheroe, a financial expert who is big on financial education, writes about complex topics using simple language. See this link on his latest blog about investing in managed funds for as little as $80.

2.  For all of you hard-working career women out there, check out www.moneygirl.com.au, which, like Clitheroe’s blog, is financial education in basic English. On managed funds, there’s stuff to read via this link.

3. They call themselves ‘The People’s Watchdog’. Consumer body ‘Choice’ has a section on its website dedicated solely to investing. It’s disappointing that their last article on a buyer’s guide to managed funds was done way back in 2007 but the basic premise still holds to this day so it’s still worth reading. See this link.

Besides, it’s worth bookmarking www.choice.com.au because they’re quite good at naming and shaming those who do dodgy deals, whether it’s about the worst plasma TV to buy or a rip-off deal in property.

If you’re tight for time, read Clitheroe’s blog. It’s chockfull of easily digestible info on investing.

Source: The Australian Filipina

5 Proven Ways to Recover From Stress and Being Overwhelmed

2021 has been a stressful year across the board. Even if you think you’re good at dealing with stress, there have undoubtedly been times this year during which you’ve had to use every trick in your book. And if you’re not good at managing stress, there have undoubtedly been times in which you’ve been desperately seeking an outlet for those overwhelmed feelings.

You’re in luck because this article will furnish you with some useful tips and tricks to help you relieve some of your mental strain.

Nourish Your Spirit

If you’re feeling stressed, a good way of easing your troubles away is to connect with yourself. Spiritual pursuits, like meditation or prayer. Both of these practices can help to increase your sense of self-awareness, diminish feelings of anxiousness, and shift your focus off of your worries and onto something higher than those worries, like yourself, or your deity.

Exercise

This one may seem tricky if outside stress-compounding factors such as anxiety, depression, or physical limitations make the idea of exercise or activity seem daunting. But keeping active doesn’t have to mean high-intensity fitness training at the gym or even organized sport. Take the dog for a walk. Mow the lawn. Watch an exercise video online and move or stretch along. Certain scientific studies suggest that regular physical activity may have similar effects on mental health as antidepressants due to the encouraging production of endorphins, the brain’s neurotransmitters that help to mitigate stress.

Do Something You Like Doing

If you’re a writer, write. If you’re an artist, create something new. If you’re a musician, play. If you’re a sportsman, head outside. If you’d rather binge watch TV, there are a plethora of streaming services to choose from. Any constructive hobby is a worthwhile pursuit and can go a long way to giving you a sense of enjoyment and satisfaction.

Get a Pet

If your life circumstances allow, having a furry friend can help with stress relief, as certain studies have shown that taking care of a pet can help to lower the blood pressure that stress can raise, and decrease levels of cortisol, a hormone sometimes caused by stress, and even make a person feel less lonely.

Unplug from a Busy Life

Sometimes, you simply have to escape, and that’s okay. Work will be there when you come back, and so will the news. Spend time with friends or family – or time alone – uninterrupted by your day-to-day activities. Taking a break from an otherwise busy life may also include a social media hiatus. You might find that the more you disconnect from the pressures of everyday living, the more you connect with yourself.

A Final Word

Taking care of your mental health is important, and even more so in these unprecedented times in which we live. And now that you’ve seen some ways to help combat stress, hopefully, you’ll be able to fight against it even harder.

Home Loan Repayments 101: How To Make Home Loan Repayments As Easy As 1-2-3

A home loan is one major type of loan you will probably ever have in your entire life.  Having said that, managing a home loan would be a tedious task to accomplish every month; especially that you still have to deal with other equally important expenses.  However, there are certain things you need to be conscious or aware of in order to manage your loan home payments in an easy way.

Before applying for a home loan, you first need to formulate a strategy on your financial plan in order to successfully manage your home loan repayments.  In other words, you have to make it fit right into your monthly budget.  This way, you can make necessary adjustments ahead of time just in case some problems occur. 

Needless to say, home loans are quite a big deal; thus, it may take a big chunk out of your financial plan.  And, it is some sort of a necessary evil to deal with every month.  However, it is equally important to take note not to miss a single payment to avoid future complications and penalties.

Make your first repayment as soon as your home loan has been approved.  This will take off a big chunk of the amount from the principal even before the interest accumulates.  With this in mind, the amount of your repayment will be much lower than you have anticipated.

Coordinate with your financial institution that you prefer paying fortnightly instead of monthly.  This way, you will speed up the process of your repayments because you end up paying the equivalent of roughly 13 instead of 12.

If you have an extra monthly income that you earn from a bonus, then, it would be wise to make additional repayments.  Do this on a regular basis and you will end up reducing the cost and duration of your home loan.

Once your loan repayments will lower down due to a decrease in the interest rate; then, make sure you will not lessen your repayments.  This way you will be making a monthly extra repayment which will make you pay off your loan sooner and eventually save you money.  And, the best thing about this strategy is that you are not affecting your monthly budget because you are still deducting the same amount of money from your financial plan.

Another tip is to make arrangements with the financial institution to have your monthly income directly deducted by the amount of the home loan repayment.  This way, you will be assured that your financial obligation on your home loan will not be jeopardized.  Also, crediting companies would prefer this kind of payment system and would even give incentives—in the form of reimbursements or diminished interest rates—to their clients for timely repayment.  You can have the rest of your monthly expenses charged from your credit card with an interest-free period. 

By and large, if you are always alert with the financial movements of your monthly budget and linking them to your home loan and daily expenses; then, you will be assured of a successful and easy way of dealing with your home loan repayments.

5 Ways To Keep Yourself Healthy During The COVID-19 Pandemic

In the midst of a global pandemic, many want to know which ways are best to boost your immune system. However, it must be noted that there is no diet, supplement, or lifestyle modification that will protect against COVID-19 except for proper hygiene and social distancing. The tips listed below may support and boost your immune health, making it easier to fight off disease and infections, but they do not specifically fight against COVID-19

That being said, here are 5 tips that will boost your immune health and with time will help you feel healthier as well help your body to fight off illnesses.

Getting Enough Sleep Each Night

You may notice when you get a cold or start feeling sick, you start sleeping longer and deeper. This is your body allowing your immune system to better fight off the illness. Your immune system takes a lot of energy to fight off illnesses, likewise, it takes a lot of energy to protect against them. It’s important to get enough sleep for many reasons, among them is to have enough energy to give your immune system a chance to fight off illnesses.

Work Whole Plant and Fermented Foods into Your Diet

Whole plants, such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and legumes are incredibly rich in nutrients and antioxidants. These may give your immune system an upper hand in its fight against some harmful pathogens. It can cut down on chronic inflammation, provide fiber to promote gut health, and most provide the vitamin C needed to reduce the duration of a common cold.

While fermented foods may not be what many think is best for their diets (And in fact when done improperly can be dangerous so be sure to research fermentation before starting) they are often packed with probiotics and beneficial bacteria that promote gut health. In turn, this allows your stomach and immune system to work together to fight off illness.

Limit the Amount of Added Sugars in Your Diet

With many coming to the conclusion that added sugars and refined carbs contribute heavily to obesity, it is important to try to begin cutting these out of your diet. Obesity, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease are all capable of suppressing your immune system. To maintain a healthy immune system it is vital to cut the risk of these by reducing how much-added sugar is in your diet to 5% of your daily calories.

Practice Moderate and Daily Exercise

Simple, daily exercises such as brisk walking, steady biking, jogging swimming, and light hiking are all great ways to stay in shape, as well as boost your immune system. An active body has a better chance of fighting off infections and illnesses.

Drink Enough Water Everyday

While drinking water does not directly protect you from germs or viruses, it does prevent dehydration and boosts your overall health. Preventing dehydration is important for everyone, as you are far more susceptible to illness while dehydrated.

Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

Universal Music Launches A Major Expansion In China, With The Launch Of Multiple New Local Record Labels

Universal Music Greater China (UMGC), a division of Universal Music Group (UMG), the world leader in music-based entertainment today and Republic Records, today announced the launch of Republic Records China, the first international label division of leading U.S. label Republic Records to launch worldwide.

Republic Records, the label founded by brothers and chief executives Monte and Avery Lipman, is home to some of the world’s most acclaimed and successful international artists, labels, and entrepreneurs including Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande, Drake, The Weeknd, and Post Malone amongst others and has long been synonymous with breaking and introducing global talents of the highest quality. In recent years, Republic artists have found success around the world, including in China, where Taylor Swift has consistently broken records for international sales success, thanks to building a large loyal fanbase across the region.

The new Republic Records China label will be built with the same blueprint and ethos as its sister-label but will focus on signing and developing the next generation of Chinese music and C-pop talent from Mainland China, with a view to reaching a global audience. The label will be based in Beijing and led by Tony Wen, who has been appointed Managing Director, Republic Records China, effective immediately and will report to Sunny Chang, Chairman & CEO, UMGC. Wen has significant experience within the Chinese music and media industries as both a successful music producer and former Sony Music and EE-media executive, with the first label signings to the new label to be announced shortly.

In making the announcement, Republic Records founder Chairman & CEO Monte Lipman said, “We’re thrilled to see the launch of Republic Records in China led by the brilliant leadership team of Tony and Sunny. This initiative recognizes the extraordinary growth in the Chinese marketplace and the palpable influence which has made a tremendous impact on our industry worldwide.”

Adam Granite, EVP, Market Development, UMG said, “I’d like to thank Monte, Avery, and Republic Records for their support, as we welcome Republic Records China and Tony to the UMG label family. We are incredibly excited for Republic to become a new force synonymous with the best in Chinese music, just as the Republic brand is seen as a trusted mark of quality around the world.  It is a unique time for music in China, with a diversely rich talent pool of new artists and talent that have the potential to find huge success both domestically, across Asia, and more than ever before around the world. UMG has a long history and culture of supporting and developing the best global music talent, and the launch of new labels only helps to accelerate and strengthen the domestic Chinese music market and most importantly introduce new and exciting artists and music to fans in China and beyond.”

Sunny Chang, Chairman & CEO, UMGC, said, “I am also very pleased to welcome aboard Tony Wen – a highly experienced, senior executive in the music industry, who has established his career in the local market and has now become part of the amazing UMGC management team. His insights and experiences will bring indispensable value for us, as we launch Republic here in China. We thank Monte and Avery for the trust in UMGC, to launch Republic as a cornerstone for our multi-label strategy, as we set to expand the horizons for Chinese music talent in the future.”

The launch comes as part of a significant expansion of UMG’s recorded music operations within China, with the establishment of a multi-label structure, to lead its focus on domestic A&R and local language artists within the region. Republic Records China will sit alongside EMI China, PolyGram Records China Universal Music China, each operating independently with their own dedicated artist rosters, A&R and specialist marketing teams as part of an innovative and unique to market, multi-label strategy, reinforcing UMGC’s commitment to accelerating and introducing the next wave of Chinese music talent to the world across a variety of genres, as it becomes the first major music company to establish multiple frontline label operations across China.

About Republic Records

A division of Universal Music Group, the world’s leading music company, Republic Records is home to an all-star roster of multi-platinum, award-winning legends and superstar artists such as Ariana Grande, Black Thought, Drake, Florence + the Machine, Greta Van Fleet, Hailee Steinfeld, Jack Johnson, James Blake, James Bay, Jessie J, John Mellencamp, Jonas Brothers, Julia Michaels, Kid Cudi, Lil Wayne, Lorde, Metro Boomin, NAV, Nicki Minaj, Of Monsters and Men, Pearl Jam, Post Malone, Seth MacFarlane, Stevie Wonder, Taylor Swift, The Weeknd and more. Founded by brothers and chief executives Monte and Avery Lipman, it is also comprised of innovative business ventures, including American Recordings, Boominati Worldwide, Brushfire, Casablanca Records, Cash Money, Lava Records, XO, Young Money, among others. Republic also maintains a long-standing strategic alliance with Universal Music Latin Entertainment (J Balvin and Karol G).  In addition, Republic has expanded to release high-profile soundtracks for Universal Pictures (Fifty Shades of Grey), Sony Pictures (Spider-Man Into the Spider-Verse) and NBC TV (The Voice), as well as other notable film and television franchises. Extending further into the worlds of film, television, and content, Republic launched Federal Films in order to produce movies and series powered by the label’s catalog and artists. Its first production was the Jonas Brothers documentary Chasing Happiness for Amazon Prime Video. Find out more at: https://www.republicrecords.com/

About Universal Music Group

Universal Music Group (UMG) is the world leader in music-based entertainment, with a broad array of businesses engaged in recorded music, music publishing, merchandising, and audiovisual content in more than 60 countries. Featuring the most comprehensive catalog of recordings and songs across every musical genre, UMG identifies and develops artists and produces and distributes the most critically acclaimed and commercially successful music in the world. Committed to artistry, innovation, and entrepreneurship, UMG fosters the development of services, platforms, and business models in order to broaden artistic and commercial opportunities for our artists and create new experiences for fans. Universal Music Group is a Vivendi company. Find out more at: http://www.universalmusic.com

Source: www.universalmusic.com