Working in the Philippines — From Your Present Job:
- 0.1 Working in the Philippines — From Your Present Job:
- 0.2 Working in the Philippines — With a Business in LA?
- 0.3 Looked Good On Paper:
- 0.4 Zero Income Makes It Hard to Live in the Philippines
- 0.5 Working in the Philippines — So How Can “Jim” Fix Things?
- 0.6 Restore the Brand:
- 0.7 Double the Business to Make Up Losses:
- 0.8 Then I’d Take Control to Prevent Losses:
- 0.9 Think Jim Can Relaunch His Business and Run It From the Philippines — Making His Money From LA??
- 0.10 Why I Know This Works:
- 0.11 It’s Very Simple
- 0.12 $100 USD per Hour Working In the Philippines But Not Trying To Earn FROM the Philippines?
- 0.13 So What’s Your Niche? How Will YOU Live in the Philippines But Make Money From Outside the Philippines?
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Working in the Philippines? Yep, exactly. Yet another article on why you don’t need a job in the Philippines to be happy and productive while living in the Philippines.
Yesterday I told you about Gene, a small business owner who felt “trapped” by his own business. It was his life’s work and he couldn’t sell it for what he thought it was worth. So, he devised a plan to move himself to the Philippines and keep on working at the business that he loved and also was providing him a very good living.
Today I’ll tell you another true story … only the names have been changed to protect the person’s privacy. I don’t know the outcome of this story yet, it’s a work in progress, but I think it provides a lot of delectable food for thought. Our “hero” today is Jim.
I first met Jim some years ago, again while I was stumping the streets of the USA trying to sell my GPS tracking systems to business owners. Actually I met “Jim” only virtually, through the power of the virtual business world, but that is kind of another story in itself. Jim had built himself a very successful little business in a large American city … his niche? Pest Control.
Working in the Philippines — With a Business in LA?
(Editorial comment: I got to be intimately associated with a lot of small businesses in the US when I actively sold into the small business market and home pest control services would be high on my list of businesses I would consider starting up myself … there is a LOT of profit margin in this business and here in the Philippines there is a huge need and virtual zero competition but again, a story for another day …)
Jim was enjoying his business and it was paying him a nice profit, but Jim had recently gotten married and he wanted to move to the Philippines with his new (Filipina) bride, build a house, a farm and a life here together. Not that bad of a dream, is it?
Jim also didn’t want to wait until he was too old to enjoy life here, either … so as many small business owners do, he put his business up for sale. Turns out the best offer he received wasn’t for cash. As often happens with small businesses like this, one of his employees made him an offer that matched Jim’s asking price .. but the “catch” was, the prospective purchaser didn’t have cash. he proposed paying Jim out of earning, over time. In effect, Jim was to hold his own note, finance the business himself.
These sorts of deals are quite common, and they can actually be quite profitable. (check out the tax rules on installment sales versus limp sums of cash). And, as part of the deal, if the initial purchaser didn’t make his payments and live up to other conditions, Jim could take back the business and be free to sell to someone else.
Looked Good On Paper:
Well you all know the story already. The economy has been so slow in the US, and perhaps the new owner didn’t do what he should have been doing to sustain and build the business, or … whatever.
The situation now is, the payments Jim was depending on to finance his life in the Philippines have been drastically reduced, and Jim is mulling over his options … the one he’ll most likely have to chose is to go back to the US and start things back up, building the business and the revenues back up and then, once again, sometime down the road, try to sell again and make his move to the Philippines all over again.
Zero Income Makes It Hard to Live in the Philippines
Everyone loves being a Monday Morning Quarterback, (and it happens to be Monday morning here in the Philippines as I write this), so you be the judge … what did Jim do last time that might have been wrong, and what might he do today … to make things work better for the future?
Go refer back to my post on Gene and how he could run his business in the US while living in the Philippines and see if you get some ideas.
Working in the Philippines — So How Can “Jim” Fix Things?
Here’s what I would do, if I were Jim … just my thoughts, mind you, as we say online, YMMV, but overall I think my plan is pretty workable. Whatever else Jim’s original purchaser might or might not have done wrong, as soon as Jim left there was a huge gap in the business … because as I have often written about on the pages, business always boils down to a people to people issue, and “Jim’s Pest Control” was no longer “Jim’s”.
Restore the Brand:
I’d cure that immediately. I’d put my name back on the masthead, get myself a Vonage phone account (so I could always take the business with me, anywhere in the world that there is Internet availability), and get myself a cheap 1-800 service ..
(when I sold my GPS units in the States, my 800 number cost me only $2.95 a month (and $0.07 a minute), but I really paid for more than a minute or two per call … if it was someone I wanted to talk to, I called them back, for free, over Vonage)and a (a little or not so little - hidden marketing fact … number blocking doesn’t normally work for 800 numbers, you get the actual phone number of the person calling, even if they think they have it blocked … sneaky, eh?).
This way the folks who had been talking to “Jim” for their pest control needs for 20 years would once again be talking to Jim.
Double the Business to Make Up Losses:
Then I’d get a cheap, but good business-like business website set up for my business … making sure everyone knew “Jim’s” was once again really “Jim’s”, give them good online ways to contact me, and I’d write every day about something of interest in the pest control world … or how far “Jim’s” had gone the extra mile in satisfying customers.
People love these stories, they really do, and if you use Facebook and Twitter intelligently, the stories go “viral” very easily.
You think the business couldn’t be doubled by online promotions, social media, coupon codes, special promos, etc? I am sure it could happen, especially since the new (deadbeat) owner has let it run straight into the ground for more than a year.
Then I’d Take Control to Prevent Losses:
- When: I’d get an online-capable time clock for employees to clock in and out on
- Who: And a web cam for the reception area and perhaps strategic storage areas so I knew who was loading up their trucks and when. Working in the Philippines You can "watch" workers from nearly anywhere.
- Where: I’d invest in sophisticated, but very inexpensive GPS tracking (tell Rob I sent you) for my trucks (the absolute heart of the business).
I could save a small fortune in fuel, maintenance and other ordinary charges, but even more importantly, I could ‘reach out and touch” every employee throughout their business day.
With a system like this one, you can even work directly with the drivers as easily as texting them … even easier, since you send them maps of where they need to go right on their dashboard screens.
Then I’d look closely at every meetings and face to face situation that seemed “necessary” and find a way to make it unnecessary.
As an example, in a small business I consulted for, we had an outside bookkeeper. (usually a v
ery smart move).
But for reasons I never quite fathomed, that bookkeeper decided she would not accept information on-line and used to clutter up our offices for a couple hours every week, laboriously going over statements that had been sent out, receipts for expenses employees had incurred, utility bills and so on. You have a bookkeeper like that? Fire them.
Get one that’s on QuickBooks or some other internationally recognized software and everything, even taxes, can be done online.
Lastly, I’d set up weekly staff meetings, (free online) monthly team builder meetings (free online) and at least an annual “offsite” (real-world, face-to-face) for my employees, so they could feel part of the team. As motioned in the past, done right, the travel cost to these meetings is normally tax deductible … and if you are in business, you are going to travel anyway, several times a year, even if nothing more exciting than going to trade shows.
And before the “Cheap Cholloies out jump in here, about extra costs of living in the Philippines .. when I traveled regularly in my GPS business, I routinely paid fares like $1200 USD between Colorado Springs and Grand Forks, North Dakota.
I can get round trip from the Philippines to any point in the US and back for the same or less money today … it usually doesn’t cost to live in the Philippines, it often pays.
Think Jim Can Relaunch His Business and Run It From the Philippines — Making His Money From LA??
Truly, what do you guys think? OK, so what did I miss? Obviously, in only a bit over a thousand words, I can’t cover every eventuality, but feel free to start picking the plan apart and let’s see if we can’t find solutions to problems that do crop up.
Why I Know This Works:
I can say this, for sure. Overall the plan would work for Jim, without a doubt. I know it will work because I sell a unique product myself “into” the US and Canadian market that I make myself, right here in the Philippines.
Actually really just do this as a favor to fellow small business operators, in the States, and I have been doing this for more than 5 years now (and yes, I pay taxes too, with a smile I might add).
I can do this work, again, from anywhere in the world I have a computer and an Internet connection.
It’s Very Simple
To simplify things I only sell a map to clients who have already paid for it in advance, via PayPal. KISS
If someone buys a product, there’s an email, showing their payment in my mail box when I wake up.
I open the mapping program, make the map they asked for (and already paid for) and then email the product to them.
Done and Dusted.
Can you get much simpler than that?
Only other “running costs” if you will for this business is to add up all the expenses (web hosting and such) and all the income (provided to me via PayPal reports, and fill out my IRS Schedule C once per year.
$100 USD per Hour Working In the Philippines But Not Trying To Earn FROM the Philippines?
I’ll never get rich from this, but considering the time it takes me to make a $25 map, the total niche market is small and more importantly, I am not actively promoting this site (Note to self, Why is That?)… but orders do flow in, like a small stream. Considering the time I spend making a $25 USD map, plus all other “housekeeping” chores for the year? I net $100USD per hour worked, easily.
So What’s Your Niche? How Will YOU Live in the Philippines But Make Money From Outside the Philippines?
Let me hear from you guys and gals who can’t move to the Philippines because you can’t find a job for foreigners in the Philippines. Maybe you already have what you need for Working in the Philippines that you can bring here with you?