This is a recent stories I received from William E, who had kindly shared with us his experience. Read his email below:

Hi KC,

Thanks for giving me this opportunity to share.
I started out my career life as a sailor onboard the ship. Sailing as a cadet under scholarship and earning USD (back in 1997) was quite a big thing then. And by age of 21, I have climbed to the rank of officer on board the ship and earning a handsome salary of USD 2000 per month. It was good back then with the exchange rate of 1USD = RM3.8, and I didn’t have much chance to spend as I was working on board most of the time. Thus, whenever I completed a contract of 7-8 months onboard, I would bring back a chunk of cash back to Malaysia.

Creative Commons License photo credit: robef

My first hard lesson:

My dad advises me to buy a property back then in 2002, a shop lot unit at Air Keroh, Melaka. But being the naïve me, I chose to invest the money in a business with a friend. I had an idea doing wurst and foot long sausages business, an idea which I picked up whilst travelling in Germany. I trusted my friend so much, that I being the one with more money in hand, will pay most of the items and he is just coordinating. We couldn’t even get past the stage of opening, when I realize my coffers ran dry and he still unable to fork out a single cent for the business. Thus, another lesson learnt. (Never fully trust anyone in business). And yes, I regretted fully today for not buying that shop lot!!

My 2nd hard lesson:

I quit sailing in 2004, and started to work in Singapore and thereafter in JB. Whilst I am in JB, I saw an opportunity of doing IT service and web page setting up business. A lot of other old tow-kay I met do not have property IT infrastructure in their office. But as I am not an IT expert, I decided to get my own younger brother to team up with me and do this in JB. I will help him out on part time and he will go on full time job. It all went well, until I realize that though I have the interest and discipline for entrepreneurship, but not my brother whom is more relax and prefers night life. Thus, we end up fighting over it and close down the business, and the worse part is I will still have to face the big bosses in my job, and they will criticize on my failure to deliver in that IT business. This is a big blow to. My lesson learnt here: If you want to do a business, always make sure that you personally is good at it, instead of hiring or teaming up with anyone!!

Finally see the light:

After I fail in JB, I moved to Singapore and work for my previous boss, concentrating in what I do best – shipboard operation. God bless, after few years of working for him, he finally opened up an option to me last year. I asked to buy part of his company share and he agrees to it (he is aging and he don’t have a son to take over the business). So, we sat down and talk over the terms and company status, and in less than a month, I’m one of the partners in the firm, till today.

I believe with strong determination and interest to do it, anyone can be good entrepreneur.

Kindest regards
EE.CT, William
Operations & Marketing Manager

I believe no matter what kind of mistakes you make, you will still have chance to get back up and thrive at the end. Thanks to William for sharing with us. Do you have anything to ask William?


Personal finance author and trainer

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