Sunday, October 04, 2020

Next Project with a Neighbourhood School

I do not like to talk about ongoing projects before I have everything confirmed,  but it's not easy to contain my excitement over this. 

Fresh after my talk in RI, a neighbourhood school has contacted me to see whether I can do a similar event for them. This is an important opportunity for the following reasons:

  • The school self-identifies as being in the lowest decile in academic performance, with Normal Academic students out-numbering express students.
  • 25% of students are recipients of financial assistance. 
  • Some stories are quite difficult to swallow. These are not RI-level problems: A student dropped out to take on a role as a temperature checker to support the family. Another left school to cohabit with her boyfriend. 
With a different demographic, so my slides have to be totally over-hauled. 

There are a couple of ways to play this :
  • I was told that the students admire influencers and this may be a good starting point to pitch a presentation. Using the analogy of starting a food stall would be a lot more effective than an MMORPG. 
  • Working, saving and investing is too aspirational. I have to share some stories on getting out of debt on top of what I already do.
  • Very important to the students is that I spend time talking about lifelong learning. 
As a businessman, I do not think of this project as a fully altruistic one, I am working hard to refine my product further for B2B consumption. So having a wide audience will give me a better perspective on what can possibly be monetised at a later date. 

I will be putting more effort into this project and expect to donate some copies of The Richest Man in Babylon to the school library if they are willing to accept book donations. 

Readers who are educators can engage me if there are speaking opportunities in your school. The best time is when I am developing an MVP and can still speak for free. 

Opinions from readers on how to tackle this project are welcome.


  1. Think it might be hard to connect....If you got any friends from a poor background, ask them. Some people from poor background spend everything cause they never know when they have money again. Some go the other way and save everything.

    Are there any jobs in sg that are not academic but still pay ok? Like crane operator, plumber, air con repair? Like you in your IT days, these guys know all about competing with cheaper foreigners, for them, Malaysians. And like IT, you cannot work in these jobs when old.

    Aren't you also an 'influencer'? Just without the instagram pics

    1. Flight attendants used to be one category LOL!

      Most "uniformed" pay a relatively good starting salary e.g. prisons, SPF, SAF, even nursing in govt hospitals. And if good attitude & hardworking, can hit 5-figure salary by late-30s. But the working hours & work-life balance in the first 5-to-10 years are crap. And the work environment & the peers you interact with generally don't foster a wealth building mindset.

      The next group will be the para-professionals good enough or lucky enough to get into MNCs. These are the support staff, admin, accounts & finance execs, assistant engineers, etc. However MNCs tend to recruit the "better" ones showing both good grades & good CCA performance. To really reap the longer term financial benefits though, this group need to be corporate-savvy in addition to being good & hardworking. That's provided they don't kena outsourced halfway.

  2. Hi Chris,

    I think that it is fulfilling to give the "free" presentation to such schools. I believe that the students and school staff members will benefit from your presentation. This is also considered as an unique achievement for you as per my perspective.


  3. You are planting seeds for the future, everybody needs to start from somewhere

  4. Thank you for the feedback, guys. Keep it coming. Remember that it is not clear whether the kids will benefit from my talk (They may well lose interest or fail to gain rapport). For me, I will gain more experience talking to younger people.

    This can only be useful as I launch a business before year end.

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  6. Frequency are hard to blend, picture tells a thousand words. People attention span are short for alien topics, impactful sentences are better than long lectures.

  7. Rather than ending, it should be the beginning. The worst outcome is one don't know what they don't. It is the impact of the message not the duration. Even only 10% of the cohort take reference from far future, it will make a difference.

  8. Cost Saving
    1)starbucks vs Yakun
    2)Android vs Iphone
    3)Value data plan vs traditional hp plan
    4)Shoppe flash deal Vs Traditional online shopping
    5)Warehouse/Outlet sales vs shopping mall sales
    6)Off peak purchase vs festival season purchase
    7)sungei buloh vs zoo
    8)free online games vs pay online games
    9)freegan website vs pay product website
    10)SCB Jump start account vs traditional saving account
    11)OEM Plan Vs SP power plan
    12)Gifted Vs Weakness

  9. Free Online Games can earn a lot via virtual goods. Just sayin... Keep it coming. I am monitoring this thread to create my slides.

  10. There should also be stickness in the slides so that folks remember it
    1)Air Asia:Everybody can fly
    2)Pen Apple Song(Pikotaro)-Repeatability
    3)E=mc2(frequent use formula)

    An apple a day keep the doctor away, A dollar a day keep your worry away.

  11. I will do my best to make my stuff sticky !

  12. The slides should have mass appeal to the audiences hoping that 80% can bring back something, but one shouldn't assume there isn't deep thinker in the crowd. They may catch somewhere in future.

    Example maslow of spending
    1)Discount purchase
    2)Bulk purchase
    3)Cheaper Alternative
    6)Cost Saving

    Simple mathematics should be fine


  14. Less is more in my opinion, People memory are short. Mcdonald is famous for big mac, restaurants only have few signature dishes.

    A longer Q & A questions will be good as it take a while to break the ice. Learning is a two way interaction, more chances for people to clarify doubts.

    1. Q&A should be stage in such a manner that perhaps teacher and principal should start the ball rolling, this will help the student to close the barrier.

    2. No model fit all answers, teacher should also ask "interesting" questions about the model of your slides. This is not to prove that the model is wrong but rather keep the students mind focus and stimulated.

  15. Lifelong learning should also involve watering the seeds. Many of time events are random base than plan. No matter how, there should be a channel for seed activation. Example, every page of your slides should have your blog details.

    1. It will even be better if you can email all your slides to the students free of charge for this talk.


  17. Jack Ma is successful because he is sensitive to future. Hare can jump faster, turtle outlast them like your reit story. Diamond and Graphene are all carbon based, one is hard the other is soft application is different. It is what it is.

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  19. Life long learning & Innovation