I get to yell at people,
I’m their master,
They (the staff) are my slave,
I can come late,
I can leave early,
I don’t have to care about them,
I can’t mingle with them,
I have to maintain my status as the boss,
It doesn’t mean I’m always right.
I’ve learned the hard way of being managed by my ex bosses. Some were pushy, some were to free, some were awesome, some became my friend and some are better forgotten.
I want to be the best boss they will every have. No matter where life takes them, I want to be remembered as someone who inspire others to be better. To realize their true potential.
Ok this turn out to be a management post.
Anyway, yesterday was the first time I paid my staff (besides Aisyah). It was a huge chunk of money. Rather than feeling awfully waste, I felt relieved that I could pay them.
Here’s to the better future. InsyaAllah.
In case you don’t know, I’m the boss web designing company at Laman7.]]>
Right. The video above gave me a total hit of 200k in 3 weeks.
When the girls pitched the idea to me, I didn’t really think it was a good idea. Afterall, I didn’t really like how DSV flaunts her wealth.
1 hour video shoot, and 1 hour editing. It was ready. I shoot to the net.
Within the first two weeks, the hits was mere 1k views. I never thought it would get further than that until DSV launched her own version on Youtube. The rest was history.
Anyway, like most of you, “I’m here for the comments” applies when I tuned to any video. Trolls are pretty common, until I got a taste.
“You know you are famous when you have haters.” -Edwin 2008
We received loads of hate comments. I’m not gonna write here, so you best check it out yourself.
The meanest was telling us to take our own lives.
I don’t kill ants and try my best not to kill mozzies. Taking human life? Far from it. How could you think of such thing?
It’s ok to tell me off, like it’s stupid, silly and dumb. But a life? Hmm..
After consulting with Aisyah, I just decided to delete mean comments, keeping it positive. It’s a parody, it’s supposed to be stupid, funny or whatever.
ps: I’ve got tonnes of inquiry about the girl in white. I’ll just leave it at that.
pps: I do vlogs in my spare time. For the kids mainly.
Because they know you, but hardly have any clue who are they.
I just hope I don’t leave a bad impression if I ever met any of you in person.
ps: I don’t know how celebrities deal with this.
Ok, maybe I’m being a bit biased hear but here me out.
The past week I finally got a chance to visit Perhentian Island after all these years (I wanted to go there since 2003). I love beach. The sand slipping through my fingers, the fierce waters and that annoying pebble stuck in between your feet and sandals. I don’t care. I love it.
Over the past few years I went on many adventures. Melbourne Great Ocean Road (2011), Krabi (2013), Bali (2015), Lombok (2016). They were all awesome, but when I reached Perhentian Island, I can’t begin to compare with others. I effing LOVE IT!
Undoubtedly, Melbourne would be the cleanest, followed by Perhentian then Krabi. Indonesia beach are pretty, but whereever you sit, you might end up sitting on empty cans, plastic wrapper, satay sticks, stuff like that. Even on deserted beach like Mawun Beach, I got trapped with rubbish.
Perhentian was cleaner. They had some rubbish on the beach but it was tolerable.
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Melbourne Great Ocean Road. The water was damn cold, but very blue and clean.
Perhentian is the best. At neck deep I could see my own feet! Just like in swimming pool. Having said that, other beach had clear blue water as well but sometimes can be murky or tasted like oil spill.
I had the opportunity to dive with the turtle. We’re not allowed to touch nor feed the wild turtle.
Marine Park, also known as Pulau Pinang of Pulau Redang. This place is amazing, lots of fish and coral, almost untainted with waste. I’m gonna edit the underwater footage soon. Check out my youtube channel. #pulauredang #pulauperhentian #terengganu #visitterengganu2017 #snorkeling
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Perhentian waves were very forgiving. My 1 year old kid had no problem standing on the beach as the waves ripple down the shore. Melbourne and Bali would be the toughest to swim against. But it’s definitely great for surfing (which I do enjoy).
This is Redang Island. It’s much more commercialized compared to Perhentian.
If you’re like me, loves to snorkel but hates scuba diving, then this is the place. Anywhere I swam, I could see beautiful live coral. They can be a little sharp, you just have to be careful. Corals break under harsh waves, frequent rain storm and too many boats. As a result, they were washed to the shores which made the beach floor really sharp.
These were extremely sharp.
This wasn’t far from the shore, with enough sunlight, you can see the floor of the ocean.
I’m a sucker for beach sand. The place we stayed at Perhentian Teluk Dalam had the nicest sand. It was silky and white.
Ok, this is a bit subjective, depending which part of island you stay. Personally, I prefer a beach where people don’t show too much of their skin. Whilst it can be a pretty sight, but 99.9% isn’t. So I’d prefer my odds of not seeing at all.
Island life and booze. I was told they go hand in hand. But if you have to get drunk to enjoy the beach, then that’s pretty stupid. Fortunately, Malaysia doesn’t allow open air drinking. When drinking is prohibited, night life activities and loud lousy techno music are not present.
I truly enjoyed my sleep. On both days there, I slept at 11pm and woke up at 5.30 am (which is very rare). I had a solid sleep.
Enjoy some timelapse of breaking dawn in Perhentian.
The best activity is island hopping (besides chilling by the beach). We went to other side of Perhentian Island, Redang Island and Marine Park. The boat ride can be really long (almost 2 hours to Redang). Redang had amazingly clean beach and water. Marine park had tonnes of fishes and corals.
Digital detox at #perhentianisland. It was a short 3 days trip with the in laws. I’ve been planning to visit this island a long time ago but never got the chance. Between Krabi, Lombok, Bali, Pangkor.. this is the best. Untainted. Almost zero waste, no vandalisme, no mobile data (certain part of island). Yes no internet. This was a 30 second open shutter with some over exposed lights from the resort. The view of the stars is priceless. #visitterengganu2017 #terengganu #island #snorkelling #slowshutter #stars
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The cost per person for this trip was RM 550 (something like that). This includes lodging, boat fares, marine park entrance fee, bus trip (from Shah Alam to Kuala Besut Jetty) and full board (all the meals). The food on the Island was slightly expensive, but wasn’t far any 7E prices.
Comparing going on overseas trip, this is the cheapest option for us.
1, The food! Perhentian food wasn’t bad, it was edible but just not that good. Every beach destination we went focused on their own cuisine, while Perhentian was trying to accomodate the tourist tongue. They should have featured their own cuisine like nasi kerabu, nasi dagang, keropok lekor and other delicious local delights.
Food is where it can seal the deal.
They didn’t have to attempt western food if they didn’t know what sear and medium well is. The island had abundant fresh fish, they should go with that. It would’ve been unique, fresh and awesome.
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Great food at Lombok. Truly amazing and authentic. Perhentian should do the same too.
2, Transportation.Getting there isn’t easy for foreigners. The nearest international airport (if you’re from outside Malaysia) is KLIA, and the closest local airport is Kota Bahru (KBR). KLIA to Kuala Besut (the jetty) is about 8 hours bus ride. While KBR to jetty about 1 hour drive. If only they upgraded the KBR airport, trip can reduced the time of travelling.
3, Mobile Data. On this side of island, there was no signal. In a way, it’s pretty good but bad for some. Good that I don’t spend anytime playing with the phone, bad is when I don’t know what’s up with the world (little things to worry about).
In short, I would definitely revisit this treasure island and spend the entire week not doing anything but dip in the waters. The cost is minimal going between island to island. The locals were very helpful and friendly. Though we converse in Malay, most know how to speak English (a little bit). However, if you come here for food, get ready to be disappointed.
ps: This post is for Traveloka Blog Contest. Get great deals at the website https://www.traveloka.com/en-my
pss: Images are taken from Video footage. Sorry if it’s not really in focus like how it should be. For vlogs, you can visit my youtube channel]]>
You see, when you have two kids, a wife and a business, shitty things happen on daily basis. As much as possible I want to be in the positive side. NH is definitely not that outlet. But having said that, I don’t want to delete all my posts (it’s my life’s work).
One day, I’d come back and reread the blog. I know how much I grew. But until then, don’t really expect much from this blog.
You can also check out my vlogs at Youtube : Let’s Go Ed
And my instagram account: NoktahHitam
ps: I’m thankful for all the friends I’ve met over the years through this blog. It has been really helpful.
pps: Maybe I can slowly erase the negativity by updating more positive posts? Hahaha
So here I am, reverting back to my old theme. This is awesome.]]>
She was shocked. She refused to accept what I said but when the tension was over, she asked me, for good?
“Yes. For good ma. (for now)”
Another shocker for her. She asked me why.
There were many reasons, but the biggest priority is the kids. I want them to grow in an environment where there are allowed to explore their potentials. In this country, we are limited by the syllabus. If you’re out of the line, teachers will smack you right in them. Making sure you obey the rule as if you’re a cadet in a military school.
Also, I don’t no longer think this country is safe. Back in the 80s and 90s, I remembered wandering off the streets and playgrounds, from one taman to another. I came back when it’s getting dark or I got hungry. I believe our kids and future generation are robbed of this freedom. I dare not leave my kids alone to the park.
Mom asked, what my career would be like.
“Anything would do ma. But I guess it’s about time for me explore other worlds, to improve ourselves, to get out of the comfort zone.”, I replied.
Clearly, she was showing signs of disapproval. She’s not liking what she’s hearing. And the conversation ended.
I told her this, because when the time comes, I am leaving. And I really hope my parents understands my decision. As the famous Malay saying, “Jangan jadi katak di bawah tempurung.”]]>
Aisyah wanted a squatting position, which not many hospital or clinic offers as the doctors say, “it will make my work harder”. We went to several clinics and hospitals prior to the due date, until we found one in Gombak, Gombak Medical Center. It’s her body, she can choose however way befitting her.
On 27th Jan 2016, Aisyah went by herself to do a medical check up. She was strong enough to drive from Shah Alam to Gombak KL. In the evening, she told me the BH was getting intense. We waited out for a while and until the traffic subsided. We left Shah Alam at 8pm after kissing our first born good night. She was confused, but she seems to get the idea.
We arrived about 40 mins later, I floored the Axia as hard as I can in between the surges. This wasn’t the first time driving to the ‘Medical Center’, so it was easy. We were then sent to our room and started unpacking our stuffs.
Around 9.15pm, we called to check on the opening, it was already 9.5 cm. We were directed to the OT. The room was small to say the lease but it was ok. Aisyah resumed the position she wanted, squatting. For the record, squatting was a traditional method of giving birth, even the Ministry of Health endorsed it (but never really practised it). I guess not many were strong enough to squat for hours.
It didn’t take long to see the ring of fire. I saw the baby’s hair. The nurses and docs were in and out of the room, chatty as always. The surges were 5 minutes apart, Aisyah went rogue, pulling everything in her face, including my hair.
Alhamdulillah, after 1 hour of battle, Amira was born. She fell on the bed, head first and it was only Aisyah and me in the room. I called for the doc and nurses. They were happy, I guess they did have to do anything much to do. The tearing was minor but still requires stitching. I did the call for prayers to Amira. She’s a fit baby, 10 mins out of the womb, she tried to roll.
Around 10.30pm, we were sent to our room. We did have a little accident, where Aisyah tried to shower and passed out midway. I had to carry her back to the bed. Blood were all over the floor, yeahhh, it was bloody slippery.
Once things have settled down, I sat down and flashed back everything that happened that day. I can’t believe it, I’m a father of two. I tried to fell in love with Amira like I did with Sara, but it didn’t happened. It felt more like a responsibility than unconditional love.
When we got home everyone was elated by Amira’s presence. Everybody wanted a piece of her and we were happy to outsource the dirty works.
Initially, her name is Alayna. It means Princess (Spanish). However, being the pro Arabs like most Malays are, Alayna means “on top of you”. That sounded like the Thai horror movie, “The Shutter”. We went through our notes again, finding the right name. Alas, we settled for Amira. It means ‘leader’ or ‘royal’. It had a good ring to it and it resonated quickly with the family.
Sara on the other hand, started throwing tantrums, knowing that she’s no longer the attention of the family. She cried often, yelled, throwing things and eventually I had scold her for doing so. It was heartbreaking, I felt like a bad parent but she needed it. The thing with Sara, she’s 2 years and 6 months old, but speaks like a 3-4 year old. It was hard to think she’s still a toddler.
Fast forward to today (2 months since birth), I can finally say, thank God everything went well. And my love for Amira has grown each passing day. I no longer felt I had to share the love between Sara and Amira. Sara has also grown out of her jealousy, she loves her sister.
In the past few years, I’ve had my share of failures. Almost all were costly as time and money were part of the trade. But there’s always a good thing about a business failure, you come back with vengeance, battle scars and loads of experience. So here’s what I learned:
1. Not Solving Any Problem
To make money, you need to provide a solution to a problem. No one will spend unnecessarily, especially in this age. The problem has to be big, it has to mean something. It has to annoy so much that it affects lifestyle, mood, livelihood, kids etc.
In my new venture, we always ask ourselves, what is it that we’re solving? Again and again. It’s been a year now, and we’re still asking the question. Why? Because we want to make sure what we do matters to our target market.
2. Solving Problem That Doesn’t Matter
Some problems are just too tiny to consider. Have you ever fell for the “forever sharp knife” on TV shopping? Who cares, we already have knives in our kitchen. We don’t exactly need another knife if what we have now is sufficient. Similarly if the problem is too small, no one cares. (BTW, I got IKEA knives, they’re awesome!)
3. Not Understanding Your Target Market
This relates to the previous points, but on a different level. To win a customer, you need to understand what they are going through, what are their pain points, how can you make them sleep better at night, what tickles them and more. The best method to obtain this is by asking your target audience directly. Another method is by ‘stalking them’ on social media (the data is there, use it!). This also helps to cross sell your future products.
4. Obsessed with Your Idea
The most common failure is obsessing over an idea. Let me be frank to you, your idea was already thought of and so does the solution you had in mind. It means nothing if it doesn’t solve any problem except for yours. While standing firm to an idea is important, learn to let go. Trust me, new ideas will arise. If you can’t let go, then do a market validation.
Sometimes the idea is too sophisticated to tell. My experience tells me, if you can’t explain your business in one line, then dude, move on.
5. Positioning or Location
We had this problem when we ran a Kebab stall. The problem we had was not enough traffic was driven to the spanking new mall. As a result we had very little sales and enough to stay afloat. Few months after, we closed. Positioning and location is key in business, online or offline. For online, being on the first page of Google is important and for offline, being accessible by your target market is highly sought.
6. Doing it For the Money
The worst of any kind of business, is doing it for the money. In order to get the best bottom line (profit), you shave right left center top bottom. Doing that hurts the end product. Yes, business will boom, but it will suffer in the long run and hurt your self conscience. Don’t go into business to make money, because once you have it, you don’t care anymore about anything else besides money. Instead have a genuine goal, for one of my startup is “Creating Happy Moments”. So by hook and crook, we have to do this even if it means tightening our belts.
7. Priced Wrongly
I hate to give this example, but look at Tutti Frutti. The first year of business was so well for them, the franchise bloomed like spring-time. Now, every shop I came across had workers with a frown and bored faces. Why? There had no customer and they were overpriced. Once customer got smacked in the face with such a heavy price tag, they never came back. Quantify the problem, price correctly. If you can’t, then model after your competitors.
8. Being Mediocre
This is a Malay dilemma. Open shop whenever pleased. Make something half hearted. Do you think customer will comeback for more? Don’t settle for just enough. If you can push further, do it. Give value to your customer, make them smile for a change.
9. Didn’t Test The Market
One of the most important steps before investing your money into business is ample research, by ample I mean testing the market. If you have a business idea, always test it with your target market. The Managing Director I worked for taught me the easiest way to test the market is to ask/say the following thing.
So there you go, 10 years of my experience. I might comeback to add more, but this is it for now. So to businesses and startup out there good luck. Remember we’re here not here to compete, but to compliment. If you have a business, do share on the comments below. I’d love to know what you do.
“It’s better to try and fail, then fail to try”
This normally happened around 830 pm, so we were ready. We wanted to potty train at such an early age so we can reduce the amount of diapers used daily. *cough cheapskate*
When she’s done with her business, she’d run to us and tell us, “mama, Sara yak ke?”. The tone was a question, just like we’d normally ask her, but I can assure you that’s a statement. She always messes up the tone, but it doesn’t matter, we’ll fix that later.
After dinner, we (Aisyah and me) took our time to share about each others day and talk about smoked duck (it cant be help, she’s craving for it). We heard Sara defecating at the corner of the room. It’s ok, we’ll clean her up once we’re done with the dishes. Sara yelled from the living room, “Mama, Sara yak ke?”.
Running across the hall with only her tshirt on. OMG. She took her pants and diaper off! Her stool was everywhere on her ‘cheeks’. Luckily there were no bricks nor skid marks on the floor. I quickly grabbed her and ran upstairs.
Giggling while I rushed her to the loo, in her tiny little voice, she said. “Abah, tima kaceh.”
I took my time to respond, knowing that the moment will end and she’ll outgrow time faster than my beard. One day, I’ll be an old man and she might be cleaning up after me. We do not need to be thanked, but it always nice to feel appreciated.
I whispered to her, “You’re welcome, always.”]]>
We scream at the top of our lungs as if we had played some part. This independence that our ancestors fought for, what was it for? More importantly are we really independent?
My friends, no.
1.free from outside control; not depending on another’s authority. “the study is totally independent of central government” synonyms:freethinking, free, individualistic;More
2. not depending on another for livelihood or subsistence. “I wanted to remain independent in old age” synonyms:self-sufficient, self-supporting, self-reliant, standing on one’s own two feet “her grown-up, independent children”
Look at our life. We work to pay for a house we live in. We work to pay the car to get to office. We work to pay our debts. But without these debts, can we truly live a happy life?
The world we know today is filled with materialism, which creates ample room for optimism and false happiness. Ask yourself, how long did a new cloth made you happy? New shoes? New car? In the end we want more. We want the better version, we constantly upgrade to fit our lifestyle.
Until we can find a mechanism to free ourselves from unnessary worldly worries, then I say, we are still mentally colonized.
Ps: you might want to look into zuhud.]]>
“Abang, kalau bawak lama-lama tayar panas nanti meletup, abang kena tukar tayar”. Pandai dia guna ” fear” technique.
Kalau dia cakap sebegin ni pada wanita, hatinya mesti dah 50-50 untuk tukar tayar.
Aku pernah dengar kisah tukar brake pad, padahal masih ada ½ inci lagi. Boleh la tahan lagi. Tak salahkan wanita, dorg mana tahu perkara teknikal sebegini.
Tokey ni cuba lagi untuk cross sell, “kalau tak tukar tayar, bahaya untuk anak. Kalau meletup masak drive, kereta confirm terpusing”. Perghh, dah macam filem Michael Bay.
Aku hanya senyum kambing. Aku bertanya kepada sendiri, apakah ayat yg sedap membuat aku rasa untuk tukar tayar?
1. Sekarang musim hujan. Jalan licin.
2. Sekarang musim panas, nanti tayar panas. Michael Bay arguement balik.
3. Kalau tukar tayar, sedap layan drift. – tapi ini kereta lama, power pon tak de.
4. Kalau abang tukar harini, saya bagi 50% off.
5. Kalau abang tukar tayar harini, saya service kereta free je.
Aku lebih tempted ke option 4. Ada banyak lagi teknik untuk close sales tapi ini sahaja yg dapat difikirkan. Untuk kereta lama/usang yg hanya diguna untuk ke LRT, memang agak susah nak cari titik kelemahannya.]]>
I have asked this question many times before. And I have gotten a satisfactory answer yet.
Is our purpose to help another man? Is our answer to help the world? Is our pupose to feed upon our greedy soul?
But for now, I’ll stick to making the world a better place, better than I found it. So help me God.]]>
I started NH out curiosity and soon it was used to remind myself, what I was like when I was young. Boy, I sure have grown a lot over the past few years.
So what’s up with me now?
First, I got fired (konon drama) from a company I’ve been nothing but loyal to for the past 6 years. In their defense, it was a method to get the ‘right sizing’, what ever that means. It came with a good compensation, so I’m good (at least for now). I was going to resign anyway, so with the right package, and the right timing, the push and pull factor was just too hard to resist.
However I do regret about the things I didn’t get to realize. I had a dream for the company, I was in a position to help the nation and build a better world. Unfortunately, the dream wasn’t reciprocated. It was easy to spot me like a left wing party when all my intentions were noble. What could be right for me, might not be right to others.
Despite that, I am thankful of the experienced I gained, friendship and partnership formed.
Secondly, my family. Aisyah is with a kid and Sara has been nothing but a happy girl, living up to her name. Sara has been fighting to keep the lights up, which is troubling when you know she’s sleepy but decided not to give in. My mom told me, that was my trait.
Third, business. I’ve loads of ideas to be executed. The problem with a well lid mind is, there’s a lot of thinking, less of doing. So if nothing is moving, how can I ever move a mountain? Some basic life principle has to be altered like, ‘Work smart, not hard’. I’ve seen people whom just bulldoze everything in their way (definitely lack of decision making) and it worked for them. In fact most of them are successful in their own terms, which is good.
Over the past few years, I’ve learned a few tricks to reduce the over thinking and more of doing. It starts off with listing everything you want to, making sure it’s broken down to granular and actionable level. This definitely helped me with my procrastination.
Business is great but can be better. I was able to achieve yearly sales target within a quarter. All thanks to The Almighty, He decides whats mine and yours. The formula is simple, give all you can, that includes efforts when volunteering, making sure your customers are happy, staying up late to get a pixel perfect design and yara-yara. It sounds simple, because it is, we humans tend to overthink.
Forth, friendship. I realized, getting married sure shackled me to the bed, then we had a kid. I was jolted to the ground. I didnt want to miss my kids growth, it only happen once. Now I’m free during working hours, I was able to revisit my old customer, rekindled a friendship and be acquinted to new awesome people. I tend to keep myself away from negativity.
Fifth, the world. The hell with it. I read enough just to keep informed. I do not meddle and be bothered to investigate in great detail. Implementing the ‘whatever’ sure brought me more happiness. I do puzzle over the recent statements made by the minister, did they bump their head or just drank ants?
I guess that’s it for now.
Ps: I’ve decided to address my future self rather than you (the readers).]]>
I have worked for 5 years in this organization. I have seen people come and leave, the good and bad of managers, the failing strategies, the lazy execution, the de-moralizing team and more. I can look at the numbers, opportunities, data, and gut feeling again and again, but is the grass really greener outside? Or yellowish of the same nature? Recession is coming. People stop buying houses. Purchasing power has declined.
The big question is, should I pack my bag or endure this?]]>