Starting a business is definitely not the easiest journey to embark on. You gotta have capital, you gotta have a plan, you gotta have the connections—where do we even start?
Lucky for us, we have the co-founders of The Scoop Asia, Taryn Navarro and Angela Tiotangco-Alvarez to help us get started. Taryn and Angela started ACT Digital and Design Corporation, a digital and tech company, back in 2017. Taryn, who handles the creatives of the company, and Angela, who handles the business side of things, were the only two people working in the company at the time. As they landed more and more clients and had multiple new projects come their way, they saw the potential in what they were doing, which in turn pushed them to expand the company through interns, part-timers, and eventually, full-time employees.
In the first video of School of Scoop, the co-founders share tips on starting a business, highlighting 6 important lessons they learned when they were in their first year of building their company.
Lesson 1: Mindset is everything.
“I really wanted something to call my own—yung saakin talaga. So of course, in order for you to do that, kailangan yung mindset mo, naka ready na. Ito talaga yung gusto kong path.” says Angela, who reminds us that when you enter a business, your mind already has to be on “successful-entrepreneur” mode. Your mindset can change the way you go about your work on a daily basis.
Another tip that the girl bosses made sure to emphasize was that you need to find a partner that has the same mindset as you. It’s very important to find somebody who shares the perspective you have on business and on life.
“When someone sees potential in you—for one person to put their trust in you, it changes your perspective on how you want to go about your career.” says Taryn.
Something to keep in mind, ladies. In the words of The Scoop Asia’s co-founders: Mindset is really everything.
Lesson 2: You have to do the work.
Angela talks about how money and success don’t just happen. Putting in the work, as we all know, is a step that cannot be avoided. She emphasizes that we can’t expect great output if we were to just sit in bed all day sleeping; the work and effort are essential.
Following Angela’s statement, Taryn reminds us all that working hard isn’t the only key. You have to work hard, work wise, and make connections. We all have a different perspective when it comes to business and life, and that’s why respect is important.
“What works for us may not work for you. You have to find your habit and your pattern.”
The bottomline is that when it comes to relationships with other people, they both believe that it’s important to be a person with values, and to respect other people whether or not you agree on business or personal matters.
Lesson 3: Stop worrying about what other people think.
Taryn shares her story about how she started doing freelance back in college, however, would usually do the work for free. She then reminds us that even though charging for your work is okay and that it is something artists encourage in the freelance industry, she put people’s thoughts and opinions aside, and did what she felt would truly work for her.
“I accepted projects for free, mainly because I really wanted to build my portfolio.”
“People may tell you not to do things for free, which is totally okay, but what really worked for me was putting myself out there, and proving to myself that I can do the work, before I started charging.”Taryn Navarro
In the prime age of social media, we can all admit that remaining unbothered by what other people think can sometimes (okay, maybe almost always) be more difficult that we’d like it to be. This is why it’s important for us all to establish clearly, within ourselves, who we truly are, and what we truly want to do. Taryn and Angela are the perfect people to look up to when we have difficulty remembering this.
Lesson 4: Your support system will never fail you.
Lesson 4 is most likely a lesson that we can all—not only relate to—but definitely agree with. Being strong independent women does not necessarily mean we can’t accept a helping hand every once in a while.
“Important din yung support system kasi in times of [let’s say,] nag-fail ka, or whatnot, sila kasi yung maglilift up talaga sayo. And sa mga small wins mo, sila din ang mag cecelebrate sayo.” says Angela.
She tells us that together with Taryn, they always make sure that they celebrate the small wins—even the signing of a new contract calls for a glass of wine for these two lady bosses.
Taryn then shares how her most important support system is her family. She tells us how her family allowed her to take on this journey from the very beginning, together with her co-founder. She talks about how, as the norm, parents will always question us on what our plans really are in life, making sure that we are ready to do what we set our minds to, and yet, even if her family wasn’t involved, they supported her completely.
“My family is in the real estate industry, so when it comes to digital [and tech], [they aren’t too familiar with the field].” shares Taryn. This emphasises the support and trust her family put on her, considering the fact that they had no prior-knowledge on the path that Navarro was about to take.
Our lady bosses also talk about how support from friends is just as important. Even the simple acts of liking, commenting, and sharing of posts on social media means a lot, not only because they come from the digital and tech industry, but because it shows that they are giving an extra hand to show their products to different businesses and other people.
Lesson 5: A business owner’s mindset never goes quiet.
The partners share stories about how it doesn’t matter how late in the evening it is; once they come up with an idea they would want to share, they message each other immediately about it (and despite informing the other that replying immediately isn’t needed, they still reply nevertheless).
These independent ladies also share stories about how whether they have had a drink or not (these are the kinds of bosses we all want to have, tell me I’m wrong), their minds never go silent as they exchange thoughts on potential business ideas and proposals.
“If you’re starting a business, it’s important to see your habits when it comes to looking at ideas.”
These lady bosses remind us that it’s important to have the drive. They remind us that we cannot study drive and passion; this is something that comes from within, however, this can be built up over the years, depending on who you surround yourself with.
Never silence yourselves, ladies. If you have an idea, be confident in speaking up; you’ll never know what that idea can turn into one day. Believe in yourself.
Lesson 6: You learn something new all the time.
Angela reminds us that you have to learn how to adjust. She also shares about learning from everybody in the team, whether it be on big or little things. The diversity of the clients they handle that come from different industries such as events, products, and even insurance, helps them learn a thing or two on a daily basis.
“As a business owner doing sales and finance, you have to learn how to read the room. Adjust to who you’re talking to and be flexible enough to know that not everyone thinks the same way you do.”Taryn Navarro
Taryn shares how in every struggle and situation they encounter, they learn how to cope, and have learned how to turn these struggles into lessons. They did not stop themselves from improving further.
We can definitely apply this lesson to our everyday lives as well. Whether we’re on the drive on the way to the office or we have a coffee date planned out with some of our greatest friends, the willingness and drive to learn is what’s going to help us build knowledge on a daily basis. Despite the fact that we should never be ashamed to speak up and share what’s on our mind, there will always be something fulfilling about simply listening to what people have to say.
To cap off the episode, our co-founders remind us that business is not easy, but it is fulfilling.
Watch School of Scoop’s first video by clicking [here], and don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube Channel to stay updated for new videos, whether it be about business, life, personal-development, and more!
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