Business & Strategy PerspectiveJanette Toral
Here are some of the articles we’ve written about this topic.
Planning for 2009
November 27, 2008
Among the things I did last week was to post two forms in my site. The first one is a contact form where people can type in their concerns and I will get notified whenever it gets filled up. The second one is a sign-up form for bloggers who want to participate in our events and be kept informed. They were also encouraged to provide suggestions on activities we can undertake.
You can also express your interest and ideas for our 2009 activities.
RP’s top 100 blogs for 2008
October 23, 2008
RATIFIED.ORG announced last night the Philippines’ Top 100 Blogs for 2008 during a Davao bloggers meet-up. These are blogs that have achieved growth from the start of this year to the present. While going through the report, I observed the following.
E-Commerce Overview for the Handicrafts Sector
This video was shown at the BSO Network Philippines forum entitled “PERSPECTIVES ON SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT” hosted by the ‘Pamasko ni Kuya’ of the Philippine Chamber of Handicrafts, Inc (PCHI) in partnership with PLDT SME in Manila. (September 30, 2008)
Reliability of remittance services
September 25, 2008
FOR those who go in and out of the country, one basic important service you need is to be able to send money. This can be accomplished through direct bank transfer, Paypal or online money transfer services, like YesPinoy and Xoom, among others. Each one has its own quirks. But the worst disappointment I have experienced is with Xoom.com as of this writing.
Becoming an authority
September 18, 2008
REGARDLESS of what field we are in, we all have chances of becoming an authority. It will take time to establish that but those who are competitive may get there much sooner.
Online shipping matures
August 21, 2008
ONE challenge self-publishers face is the delivery processing of book sales. Yesterday, I was working on almost 40 deliveries for my new book, “Blogging from Home.” I find it quite expensive to visit the courier and ship one book with a tag price of P80 to P120.
Blogging from home
July 24, 2008
MY fourth book, “Blogging from Home,” is scheduled to be launched on Aug. 13 to 15 during the Second Internet and Mobile Marketing Summit at Hotel Intercontinental Makati City. It took me more than a year to finally complete this book. Playing the role of author, editor, proofreader and publisher all at the same time was not an easy task. However, I hope readers will find the complete work worth it.
Taking Web operations seriously
July 3, 2008
WHENEVER I hear stories about website disasters on online booking sites and electronic banking, among others, it brings to mind how companies take their website operations seriously. But even for small website owners, like you and me, these matters should also be important and must be handled properly.
Promoting event brands through blogs
May 8, 2008
CREATING a blog for an event is a practical approach to increase search engine visibility. It can compliment a website and allow short notes highlighting progressive developments about the event.
Blogging, e-commerce, and going international
THIS second quarter, I will be launching two books using a self-publishing model.
ICT policy citizen lobbying
AFTER the passage of the Philippines E-Commerce Law (Republic Act 8792), there were many efforts by various interest groups, individuals, and even government agencies, pushing for the passage of information technology (IT)-oriented legislation. Some of them, in fact, are meant to update the E-Commerce Law.
Being remarkable is Purple Cow
SINCE last year, I’ve been contemplating of buying Seth Godin’s, “Purple Cow.” While traditional books do not seem to provide the inspiration that I need to address current challenges, I think this book might be able to. True enough, the book didn’t disappoint.
We asked 7 club members to share the great things that happened in 2007 and their plans for 2008.
- Enrico Gaw of Gallery 7 Digital Studio
- Rowell Luna of Pandeli
- Reggie Bundang of RegaloService
- Joan Pinon of MyLittleBaker
- Jay Frank De Jesus of TitikPilipino
- Michelle Pestano of Chikka
- Aileen Apolo of Google
Managing a virtual publication
MY latest project got me involved in managing four blogs that feature stories of overseas Filipino workers, Filipino migrants living abroad, local entrepreneurs, businesses, employees and Palawan travelers, among others.
Companies embrace blogging
IN the past months, I’ve been getting inquiries from companies that want to explore the possibility of having their own blog sites and gain understanding of how this can benefit their business.
Revisiting your website
WHEN planning to improve your website, you will need to revisit your purpose for putting up one so that your enhancement won’t just be for the sake of putting up new features or just to catch up with the times.
RP’s offshore destination award
YESTERDAY, I received great news that the Philippines won the offshoring destination of the year award given by the National Outsourcing Association (NOA) awards.
Income from online videos
How can short video publishers earn online.
Experience with Amazon Omakase and perspective about Mad Crowd Media.
7th year of the E-Commerce Law
ON June 19, 2000, Republic Act 8792, otherwise known as the Philippines E-Commerce Law, took effect. It’s been seven years and I’m optimistic as ever, although a bit nervous too.
After the 2004 elections, Sen. Mar Roxas and Rep. Junie Cua took over the chairmanship of the Congressional Oversight Committee for the E-Commerce Law (Cocec). To their credit, eight major developments happened and their effects can be seen in the years to come.
Corporate social responsibility for IT companies
Last week, I just found out that the Intellectual Property Ventures Group (IPVG), a publicly listed company on the Philippine Stock Exchange, has just created its CSR division, IP Foundation. Chaired by Marco Santos, the foundation supports two main advocacies: health services and IT education.
A CHALLENGE that most struggling self-published writers like me face is how we can do better in reaching out to a bigger international audience.
A FEW weeks ago, we all saw the ad campaign of VforCE or 1 Million Volunteers for Clean Elections. I posted an ad about it in our blog and encouraged friends to help spread the word or even join at http://vforce.multiply.com.
April 5, 2007
Last March 24, the Philippine Schools Cyberfair awards ceremony was held and I’m glad there were winners in all eight categories. It was hard to complete a winners’ roster in the past, as entries must be presented in English and Filipino. Having organized this competition for the past six years, I got asked if the appreciation of local content development is growing.
In the iBlog3 planning session, I was asked what makes this year different or significant for bloggers. In a nutshell, I believe bloggers have arrived. From a business point of view, blogs are now fully recognized for their potential in creating awareness, communicating with prospective customers and influencing search engines.
SEN. Mar Roxas delivered a fiery speech during the E-Services Philippines Outsourcing Trade Show and Conference last week. The conference started during his stint as secretary of the Department of Trade and Industry. A highlight in his talk was when he announced the 2010 vision for the outsourcing sector, referred to as ’10 by 10 by 10′ (10x10x10). This refers to the $10 billion with 10 percent of the global outsourcing market in 2010.
Last week, I discovered the relevance of content development through Google PageRank ‘ a tool that measures the importance of a website based on its content and link back, among other parameters.
January 18, 2007
A foreign-owned software development house recently sent me an e-mail expressing concern about how hard it is today to attract job applicants to their organization. It reached a point where they got desperate and decided to hire people from India and Pakistan to work in the country. Actually, this is an inquiry I often receive through e-mail and sometimes in information technology (IT) events. More often than not, I have not even heard of their company’s existence which caused me a bit of an embarrassment.
January 4, 2007
I HAVE been selling my books online since 2000. To deliver the books to various locations, I tried various shippers and haven’t been disappointed so far. I don’t have a preferred courier. I reached the point where I am confident enough to ship a book through any courier and will use the one nearest me at the time I make that decision. So far, at least 90 percent of my book shipments are done through LBC.
Rediscovering the Web
December 21, 2006
I REMEMBER the first time I went online in 1995, I was using a 386 computer with a paper white monitor. I was so excited that I hopped from one website to another, just to explore.
December 19, 2006
I recently got an inquiry from an international site wanting to have their ad posted in DigitalFilipino.com. This is something that I usually get and have refrained from accepting such type of offers directly for several reasons.
Growth of Internet cafes
November 16, 2006
HOW do you define an Internet cafe? Actually, I’m having a sort of dilemma on this one as another type of business establishment can also be involved in Internet rental services to boost income. Does this make them an Internet cafe as well?
Designing online membership programs
November 2, 2006
I received an interesting e-mail recently from a reader who is planning to launch an online community but wants to charge a fee for it – for sustainability.
October 26, 2006
I recently came across an article that quoted former Commission on Information and Communications Technology (CICT) commissioner Ver Pena, who expressed his disappointment on various government agencies that are supposedly responsible for pursuing e-government programs in the country.
September 7, 2006
Congratulations are in order to the Business Processing Association of the Philippines (BPAP) for its partnership agreement with Nasscom last Monday. As Sen. Mar Roxas said then, the arrival of Nasscom and its serious step in partnering with BPAP is an important symbol, one that shows we are succeeding in our quest to make the country an outsourcing destination. It is important to note that we are attracting more serious partners to this cause.
August 3, 2006
What a lot of information and communication technology (ICT) companies don’t know yet is that SB Corp. also launched the SME-FIT program last March. The program offers loans that can be used by IT companies to offer ICT products to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) that are mostly cost-conscious.
Work at home
July 27, 2006
I got an interesting e-mail recently from a friend in Davao City about possible work-at-home scheme. From personal experience and observation, there are many ways to earn and work at home. Here are some of them.
Focus, be competitive, shamelessly promote
June 29, 2006
Since I started the DigitalFilipino podcast (http://digitalfilipino.podomatic.com), I realized how young the podcasting market still is as very few are capable of releasing programs on a consistent schedule.
ICT growth and pains
June 19, 2006
Did you know that there are more women using ICT and the Internet than men? However, when it comes to ICT leadership in government, well, that’s a different story. We have but a few women leaders in IT. Nonetheless, I got the chance to exchange messages with three of these women leaders in this sector and talked about how they perceive the local ICT is evolving.
Accountability and transparency
June 8, 2006
How should one run a non-profit IT (information technology) organization? This is a question I received lately from a reader who is planning to put up one with the intent of promoting their area’s outsourcing capabilities and push for e-commerce adoption in the community.
Real estate developments and IT
May 18, 2006
While validating my outsourcing destination matrix report with DigitalFilipino.com club members in Davao, Cebu and Cagayan De Oro, we realized the challenges in front us of that needs to be dealt with at the earliest time.
Making the Philippines CMMI Self-Sufficient
April 30, 2006
It is a known fact that the Philippines software development industry is way behind compared to India than how it was 10 years ago. We must get our act together if we still desire to catch up with the big players, get more than just maintenance and small scale software development projects.
April 27, 2006
I recently received an inquiry from a systems analyst and developer who got the privilege of being promoted as a team leader or project manager. Of course, this person is very happy about it. However, the promotion gave the individual a lot of worries, knowing that being a good technical person does not necessarily make someone an excellent team leader or project manager.
Six Value Medals
April 8, 2006
There are many things that we have to consider whenever we need to make important decisions in our lives, business, and country. You can opt to be impulsive, gut feel, or methodical. In my case, I’d rather be a combination of it. I’m glad that after reading books like Six Thinking Hats, Blink, and Thinking for a Change, I got my hands on The Six Value Medals of Edward de Bono.
March 20, 2006
One of the challenges that we are facing in the country is that there’s little seriousness in complying with existing laws. As soon as a law is passed, you’ll find people immediately pushing for amendments. However, what I learned from the late Sen. Raul Roco, one can’t push for an amendment to an existing law unless there’s sufficient court ruling indicating its futility or uselessness in performing its purpose.
Joining political parties
March 9, 2006
WITH the great influence of the Internet and various technologies in government, business and our daily lives, I believe it is about time for information technology (IT) professionals to consider joining political parties and push for their respective agenda.
February 16, 2006
The E-Services Philippines 2006 opens today at the EDSA Shangri-la Hotel in Mandaluyong City. This event is considered as one of the biggest and is participated in by various local government units in the country. The number of foreign delegates, who attend the event to find out what the country has to offer, is also growing.
Flywheel – No Miracle Moment
January 28, 2006
In reading Jim Collin’s book, Good to Great, he talked about companies not being able to pinpoint a defining moment that turned everything around and make them a great company. Their success came from cumulative and consistent effort in the same direction. As time goes by, the flywheel effect takes place. This is where with the same effort, accomplishments made over time increases.
January 22, 2006
I attended a mass earlier today. Our parish priest gave an interesting sermon that started by expressing his happiness as Manny Pacquiao won a big boxing match earlier against Morales. Aferwards, he said, the reason why Manny Pacquiao has captured the hearts of Filipinos all over the world is our society’s yearning for true heroes that we can look up to and be truly proud of.
Reviewing 2005 and Planning for 2006
December 28, 2005
Nope, this is not your typical 2005 political review but more of looking at what happened to me this year. I think this is the first time that I’ll be doing this so here it goes.
The More You Know, The More You Don’t Know
December 4, 2005
In my past readings of both John Maxwell and Stephen Covey, one phrase that I won’t forget is “the more you know, the more you don’t know.” The year 2005 is a time of awakening for me. I came to realize that as the Internet empowers more individuals to share their knowledge and put their content online, there are a lot of things that one must learn.
Questions on the electronic procurement system
November 17, 2005
Promoting local software development companies can’t just be done by attracting overseas contractual jobs here. Local government units (LGUs) should do their part to ensure that the opportunities they bid out will also be made available to small and medium enterprises (SMEs).
Thinking Effectively: Six Thinking Hats
October 16, 2005
In meetings and in communicating with people, face-to-face or e-mail, we usually encounter weird reactions. Some, instead of seeing a communication as a straight request for facts will see it from a negative point of view, perhaps from prejudices, lack of trust, among others. This usually hampers us from getting things done. That is why there are some who will just vent in frustration, “can’t we all just get along?”
Business transformation outsourcing services
October 13, 2005
Last Monday, IBM opened its new global services delivery center in Manila. The center consolidates and expands IBM’s operations to meet the growing market demand for Business Transformation Outsourcing (BTO) services in the Asia Pacific.
Who Will Take Your Place? Mentoring Potential Leaders
October 10, 2005
A leader’s true capability is put to the test if they are successful in surrounding and developing potential leaders around them, not followers. If you can’t name anyone who is capable of taking your place, then you are nowhere of being referred to as a true leader, but a manager instead.
No Thank You – My Not To Do List
October 2, 2005
As we progress in our careers and business, we are often faced with so many opportunities that tends to distract us. However, once in a while, you have to pause and re-evaluate your actions. Else, you may end up committing yourself to so many things but fail to meet deliverables.
Leaders that care
September 3, 2005
We meet a lot of leaders everyday. However, not all can move us. According to John Maxwell, it’s not so much about what our leaders know, how intelligent they are. What matters most is how much they care, about our needs, dreams, and desires.
Raul Roco’s legacy
August 18, 2005
I first met Sen. Raul Roco when I helped lobby for the passage of the E-Commerce Law in the year 2000. Sen. Ramon Magsaysay Jr. had successfully brought past deliberation with seven senators. But when it came to Senator Roco, we got into trouble. He remarked, “Your proposed bill is patterned after Singapore but most of our laws, court rulings, and references are patterned after the USA.”
How do you want to be remembered?
August 14, 2005
As the Honorable Raul Roco passed away, it made me thought of the legacy this great person has left behind to our country. In studying the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen Covey gave us the challenge to think about, “how do we want to be remembered?”
4 Disciplines of Execution
August 11, 2005
If your organization is having a hard time achieving business goals or missing critical deadlines, perhaps it is time to review your organization’s Execution Quotient.
Reaching Mount Everest
August 5, 2005
It requires teamwork to get to the top. Note that not everyone in the organization will get there but each one has a role in order for the organization to reach that goal. This is where the concept of shared success is built where internal teamwork must be fostered instead of internal competition.
The Choices I Make
July 24, 2005
We are always in conflict with ourselves. After doing a lot of thinking in the night as to the things that we be doing, sometimes, it doesn’t get followed as intended to. These lapses are conflicts within ourselves that we had to overcome. In Stephen Covey’s “The 8th Habit,” he talked about the need for strengthening our spiritual intelligence. With the mindset of reporting to our Maker on a regular basis, it sets as a guide as to how we deal with others and recognize when we sin.
My Mission Statement
July 20, 2005
After so much reflection for the past months, I have finally thought of what my mission statement should be. For those of you who are contemplating about your personal mission statement, I hope this one will provide you some guidance and inspiration as well.
From Fox to Hedgehog
July 18, 2005
In Jim Collin’s Good to Great book, the hedgehog concept strucked me. Hedgehog organizations are known for their consistency, knowing the “one big thing” and stick to it. They leave the competition behind for behaving like foxes – known for being crafty, cunning creatures that knows a lot of things but lack consistency.
Downside of Charisma
July 12, 2005
In Good to Great, Jim Collins cited that most Level 5 heads lead with questions, rather than answers. They admit what they don’t know and engage themselves with their right people in rigorous debates. At the end of it, what is agreed upon gets fully supported by the people in the bus. This openness allowed a full 360 degrees feedback in place, allowing leaders (navigators) to update their strategy and actions (flight plan) as necessary. This is where the truth is heard by default. Brutal facts are laid down and analyze regularly, without blame and coercion.
Level 5 Leadership
July 11, 2005
For the companies that were featured from being good to great, there’s one thing common about them. Their leaders exhibited Level 5 leadership. This is where the figurehead of the organization has great humility and professional will. They are ambitious in achieving the goals of the company first, not themselves. They set up their successors for even greater success in the next generation.
Dealing with position power
June 12, 2005
The biggest challenge for me is dealing with people who draw their strength from position power. As they exert no effort to build moral authority, they’ve build a lot of weakness into themselves and in the relationships they had.
Think Win-Win or No Deal
May 29, 2005
Whenever we negotiate, we always have the mindset that one will get a better deal than the other. This is where the context of win-lose or lose-win comes to mind as stated by Stephen Covey in his 8th Habit book.
Ethos, pathos, logos
May 24, 2005
In the book “The 8th Habit”, Stephen Covey talked about the Greek Philosophy of Influence called ethos, pathos, logos. Upon reading it yesterday, it reminded me of a recent event where a draft research output being presented was heavily lambasted by several well-known people in the audience.
May 19, 2005
In my DigitalFilipino.com adventures, I have a lot of initiatives that were pro-bono and unprofitable such as my publications and research reports. At some point, my concerned friends were questioning me for doing those things. I told them that this is all part of the sacrifices that one has to make in order to gain a bigger stake later on.
Having an advocacy
May 14, 2005
I usually find myself having an advocacy at the time when things don’t go well. In 1997, while I was having some uncertainty in direction, the opportunity in starting the Philippine Internet Commerce Society (http://www.pics.org.ph) came to life. In 2001, as my influence increased, the number of intrigues increased as well. As I mentioned in my earlier blog post, no one can hurt you without your consent.
Are you proactive?
May 11, 2005
My previous blog post elicited an interesting response about work-related problems that gets posted in a public blog. Rather than discuss whether that is right or wrong, legal or not, I’d rather go back to the basics.
Patience and Understanding
May 5, 2005
In my work where I coordinate with people, it is hard when deliverables are not met at the time and day agreed upon. This is where flexibility is required and making up for lost time needs to be made as well.
It pays to be proactive
April 21, 2005
Being proactive in mindset and efforts can help a person blossom in the information technology industry. Those who are proactive can have high chances of survival. They may not necessarily succeed in their efforts all the time, but the experience often makes them wiser, especially if they don’t give up trying.
Taking IT courses
April 7, 2005
I am the eldest in a family of five daughters. Without planning it, all of us took up computer-related courses even if our parents and relatives were not in this field. I must say, it was a calculated risk.
February 24, 2005
E-Services. Last week, all players in the outsourcing sector were focused on the E-Services Philippines 2005 event held at the Edsa Shangri-la Plaza Hotel, Mandaluyong City last Feb. 17 and 18. Prior to the event, there were pre-events intended to generate awareness of other potential areas. Davao City is one of them.
January 20, 2005
Marketing strategies. I recently got an inquiry from a student on what marketing techniques work best for start-up entrepreneurs. It takes a combination of efforts to get your business known. Here are some you can consider.
Build it, break it
December 30, 2004
Brand management. Last year, I got the chance to read an article from Dr. Ned Roberto and his son, Ardy Roberto, about building and breaking brands. They cited several companies as examples of how their brands were able to get known in one particular niche. But as soon as they launched new products catering to new market segments under the same brand, these products became major flops. In the Internet business, I must admit that the same rule applies.
December 16, 2004
If there’s one product today that has captured the market by storm, it’s Sun Cellular. For the past seven days, I have heard people talking about it.
New challenges in business
November 4, 2004
New business. Another way to break any boredom that you may have in your current business is by getting into a new one. Last October, my sister and I got into two new businesses. One is a gift website for overseas Filipinos who want to send gifts to their loved ones, friends and business contacts in the Philippines. The site is PadalaKo.com. The other is Prima where we are managing a day care and play school located on the sixth floor of Oakwood Premiere in Ayala Center, Makati City.
October 14, 2004
I just participated as a speaker in the World Knowledge Forum (http://www.mkforum.org/WKF/main_e.php) that took place in Seoul, South Korea last Oct. 12 and 13. It was the most prestigious one I’ve participated in. South Korea is truly a mecca of these global events. It is a country where best practices and lessons learned are sought out. The place never fails to overwhelm me with its technological developments. I was invited to talk about the strengths and weaknesses of women-owned enterprises.
Surviving hard times
September 02, 2004
No doubt we are living in hard times today. As you listen to the radio and watch TV, the talk is all about the government trying to cut expenditures left and right, getting back at those who put us in great debt, gasoline stations pumping less fuel than what we paid for, and warning of more hard times to come. For the micro entrepreneur, this presents an uncertain future. However, from a positive perspective, this is also the time where alliances can be fostered.
Operating lean and mean
July 1, 2004
LEAVING RP. Last night, I got a text message from a friend who works for one of the big IT companies in the country handling its marketing communications department.
Getting a guru known
May 13, 2004
I had the privilege lately of offering Dr. Ned Roberto’s books in my DigitalFilipino.com site. Dr. Roberto is considered as the Philippines’ premiere marketing research guru. However, as his books are available in National Bookstore, it became quite challenging to market his content. Therefore, I had to focus my marketing efforts outside the Philippines, hoping to tap a niche segment who will see value in it.
Follow your dreams
May 6, 2004
BOOK LAUNCH. In my younger days, I was one of the many Filipinos who dreamed of being published one day. This started in 1995 when I had my first article published in a computer magazine, PC World Philippines, that led to my first freelance consulting project.
Networking for business
April 29, 2004
CONTACTS MADE. The beauty of the Internet is it allows you to communicate to as many people as you like. It is a great resource for the person who is eager to network, meet new contacts, and establish communities.
Working from home: tips for the freelancer
February 12, 2004
One of the challenges of a freelancer or self-employed is to manage time and earn the desired income.
Services exporting strategy
October 30, 2003
PLAYERS CLUELESS. I am currently doing a series of one-and-a half-day seminars with the Bureau of Export Trade Promotion on services exporting. It wasn’t easy to attract participants, despite the subsidized cost, because of the lack of understanding on what service exporting means.
Why trade policies don’t reflect needs of business
September 11, 2003
I’m now attending the Global Executive Forum in Cancun, Mexico and have met various government and trade promotion officers of various countries discussing export concerns. It was noted during the meeting that businesses hardly get involved in trade policy lobbying. This lack of interest to participate results in country trade policies not reflecting the needs of the sector.
August 21, 2003
Last week, I was able to catch up with Arnold Alo, a former information technology (IT) manager of Golden ABC Corp., known for its Penshoppe (http://www.penshoppe.com) and Oxygen (http://www.oxygentm.com) clothing lines.
October 5, 2002
When I founded the Philippine Internet Commerce Society in 1997, I was at a stage of my life where I have to find inspiration and channeled my energy to an organization where I am in charge of its destiny. It was created partly because of my frustration in IT organizations existent those days where thousands of pesos are being charged in order for one to become a member and it usually becomes a sosyalan meeting only.
September 24, 2002
A recent discussion in the DigitalFilipino group sparked the question of readiness of government and large organizations to innovative social entrepreneurs of today.
September 17, 2002
Recently, I got featured in article titled Women as IT Experts. There are a lot of great women in this field. However, I feel that their roles are often undermined and even discrimated. I’ve been through that. I’m not innocent to the reality that gender discrimination exists to date even in this field of information technology. A lot of men get threatened with aggressive women for it poses quite a challenge even though intimidation is not intended. However, there are men who know how to take advantage of such women too.