She was a well-known beauty queen before becoming a thriving businesswoman, but Genecia Luo, founder of Queenz*8 Business Group did not achieve success overnight. From having to keep her family financially afloat during her teen years, to overcoming crippling debt just 4 years ago, she’s faced more than her fair share of obstacles. She tells Denise Li how she overcame them.
If you were to say, “Spending a lot of time in school and doing CCAs, and attending tuition”, consider yourself one of the lucky ones. Certainly luckier than Genecia Luo who not just had to put herself through school, but also financially support her family from the age of 15.
Today, she is a successful businesswoman with a group of companies under her belt, but the road to success was a bumpy one, culminating in a six-figure debt just four years ago. How did she find it in herself, not just to get out of a sticky situation, but also to do so well for herself? We speak to her to find out more.
Genecia helping out at Berkat Children’s Home
What, to you, is the best part about being an entrepreneur?
“To me, entrepreneurship is about having the courage to live a life that a lot people cannot find it in themselves to. Entrepreneurship is about continually facing your fears. While fear can be paralysing, it can also be immensely motivating. It’s how you deal with fear that determines how successful you’ll become. I think it’s important to acknowledge the fear; that’s when you’ll know what are the steps you need to take to accomplish your goals.”
How would you describe your management style?
“I believe in continually encouraging and empowering my staff, and instilling the importance of discipline where work ethics are concerned. At the same time, I allow them the time and space to grow as people. Every one wants to be successful in what they do, but I think everyone could do with a healthy reality check every now and then. I want my staff members to know that failures are part and parcel of building their careers. I often remind them that they shouldn’t be crippled by failure. Instead, they should have an empowered mindset that will guide them to take action and deal with obstacles as they come.”
Genecia believes deeply in giving back to society.
Any advice for women who are thinking of becoming their own boss?
“Striking out on your own is always scary, and we always imagine the worst possible scenarios. In reality, these situations rarely come to pass. I want women to know that they shouldn’t be crippled by their perceived limitations. Instead, they should channel that worry into something more positive by envisioning success. Don’t dwell, because the longer you dwell, the harder it’ll be for you to take action. Get educated, make mistakes, learn, repeat. You don’t want to be that person who regrets not doing enough for herself when you get older.”
Here are 3 things you should know about earning money on the side:
Safe is risky. One revenue source is terribly risky, no matter how big the company is.
You DON’T have to quit your job and start the next Google...you can simply earn a little bit on the side. Scale up as desired. Give yourself a backup plan BEFORE you need it.
If you decide to leave your job -- or you’re laid off for reasons beyond your control -- you have an instant revenue source that you can “scale up” immediately Think about it.
Let’s say you take an idea and turn it into side income. You’re still working at your full-time job, but you’re putting in a little more time to earn $500/month on the side. If you want, you can “tune” that number to $1,000/month...or $2,500/month.
One day, you might find yourself actually earning more on the side than at your day job.
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