Finance: How to make ‘social capital’ count

Before Nonette decided to start a business consultancy firm, there were 2 things she needed to consider.

First, obvious na kailangan nya ng pera o financial capital para ma-process ang kanilang business license, bumuo ng staff, mag-rent ng office, mag-stock ng supplies, at ibang expenses. Second, Nonette asked herself kung sigurado na siyang sapat ang kanyang “social capital”—ito ang personal and professional network na meron tayong lahat from our social interactions and experiences.

For Eric Go Serate and Joel Serate Ferrer, authors of Paano Yumaman: 50 Pera Tips to Making and Saving Money, susi ito sa financial success.

Sabi nila, a social network is “a group of individuals that have a certain affinity for each other.” Sa career at business naman daw, “when properly used, social networks can help us meet our needs.”

Know your social networks

In their book, Eric and Joel note some of our common human associations. If nurtured and developed, pwede itong maging iyong social network.

1. Family

Ito ang basic social unit at lahat ay meron nito. Lalo na sa Filipino culture, extended pa ang family ties sa buong angkan. Kapag kailangan mo ng trabaho, mas madaling humingi ng referral o recommendation sa isang relative. Kung meron ka naman startup at hindi ganun kalaki ang iyong financial capital, your family can loan you the money or help you raise funds.

2. School


Ito daw ang “second most important network” after family. Almost all professionals have gone to school kaya may bonding tayo with classmates, schoolmates, and teachers. You have similar needs and concerns with your batchmates which bring countless opportunities for interaction, mutual assistance, and support.  Kaya nga nagtutulungan ang mga alumni at college professors. For instance, dahil active na alumnus ng Trinity University of Asia, nakapagturo din si Joel sa De La Salle College of St. Benilde School of Design and the Arts. Nirekomenda daw siya ng isang batchmate.

3. Industry association or professional organization. “This has the most siginificant impact on one’s career or business if well-managed,” the authors say. Para sa kanila, makakatulong ito sa iyong growth as a career professional or industry practitioner.

4. Local government unit. Kasama rin sa iyong bonding ang mga ka-barangay—both neighbours and local government officials. “Not only for work or business-related concerns,” they explain, “but also for various community activities and projects.” Easy to reach kasi sila due to physical proximity kaya daw sila ang iyong “natural allies” sa mga community concerns.

Take note of the details

Eric and Joel have a parting tip: “Make your contacts count with a database.”

In our daily grind, marami daw kasi tayong name-meet na mga tao but we don’t take note of the details later on.

“Properly profiling data on the people we meet on a contact database is an important tool that can help maximize our network,” sabi nila.

Details of a good contact database should include the name, contact information, company or institution, and other key and relevant information that can harness your future relationship with an initial acquaintance.

Sabi nila, you should also list your contact’s industry colleagues, professional associations and advocacies, and include personal information, like birthdays, names of family members, associations, and education.

You can use and maintain either a hard-copy or electronic database. Take note of the fields or types of information you want. For every name sa database, fill in that information at gawing routine ang pagdagdag ng entries dito.

Huwag kalimutan mag-update, dagdag ni Joel. “Add ideas for your contacts and delete inactive ones,” he says. “’Modify and revise your database until you have created one that is most useful for your contact management needs.”


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