When I took the brave (or foolish?!) decision to step out of my comfort zone at the Ministry of Education and resign two years ago, there were many uncertainties and question marks. Was I making a grave mistake? Would I be able to support my family? Would I be able to make a successful transition to being a businessman and a freelancer?
I didn’t have all the answers, just a vague idea of my overall plan and a strong feeling in my gut that I have to just bite the bullet and give it my best shot.
Leaving what many people perceive to be an iron rice bowl was really a big sacrifice, but I knew that it was something that I needed to do, or regret that I didn’t try, many years down the road.
All my 14 years at MOE, I didn’t earn a lot, compared to those working in other professions, but I never had to worry about having not enough money. When I resigned, I knew that I would be facing a huge learning curve, and I needed to play my cards right.
That was part of the reason I decided to join Business Network International. I had the fortune of meeting Wayne at a former colleagues wedding dinner. He was the wedding emcee, and also a member of BNI Singapore Champ!ons Chapter. We struck up a conversation, and he invited me to the weekly chapter business meeting to take a look.
At that time, Champ!ons was a small chapter with about 17 members. They met at a small cafe in town, and I was drawn by the family atmosphere. The members were all from different trades, and seemed to really care for each other. They all had amazing stories to tell about they own journey in their own field. There was a good mix of young and old, and also people from different cultures and ethnicities. I felt right at home and I knew I wanted to join almost right away!
Time-wise, it was a heavy commitment, having to meet every Friday morning for the weekly networking meetings. We also had to make extra time to have one to one meetings with individual members during the week, so that we could learn more about each other’s businesses so that we could give each other better business referrals.
Looking back, I’m super glad that I joined, and am very proud to have called Champ!ons my business family for the past 21 months. I have learned so much here from the others, and have honed my business acumen and presentation skills. I have also benefited from the referrals passed, the testimonies received.
Even though I still have a long way to go to find success in my business, I know that I am in good hands, and I am with a great bunch of friends!
21 months later, we have more than doubled in membership and have won awards for being the best chapter in our region! Long may it continue!
If you would like to visit Champ!ons, do drop me a message!