Story of Coming to China and Just Doing it with Rico Ngoma – GFA145

Michael MicheliniLifestyle, Living, Podcast2 Comments


Good day from Bangkok – sneaking in this podcast welcome from the DCBKK event. Will keep it short – heading to airport now for the Smart China Sourcing Summit by Global Sources.

Today’s show we have Rico – my business partner in Enter China community talking about his story of how he made moves, came to China and progressed from English teacher to business owner, enjoy!

Also this is Canton Fair season – we have that page with all the events at globalfromasia.com/cantonfair and the show notes for today are at globalfromasia.com/episode145

Topics Covered in this Episode

  • Connector.

    Intro Rico

    Rico – we are hanging out in the backyard of my apartment complex – taking a break between Enter China webinars – living the good life man, right!

  • Connector.

    Background

    So, your background – you’re from Africa – how did you end up in China?

  • Connector.

    Source Find Asia

    Then you got into Source Find Asia with ChinaMike (no, not me) – how did this opportunity come to be?

  • Connector.

    How To Get Started

    A lot of people contact me, as well as probably you – and ask – how to get started. I think that shouldn’t be the first question right? I mean, you and I – we are just doing it.

  • Connector.

    Podcasting

    So you’re doing this sourcing, and now the podcast – Made in China show – which I was a guest on – thanks – (episode ____) – what got you to get into podcasting (as it is a lot of work, as I know!)

  • Connector.

    How To Questions

    So listeners on here, like people on the webinar we just had – they ask – how to find a product – how to get to China – how to find workers – how to find translators. What is your answer?

  • Connector.

    Big Mistakes

    In your sourcing business – as well as in the Enter China community – what are some of the bigger mistakes you see clients make when working with you – and factories that people can learn from?

  • Connector.

    First Step

    For those who never bought from a factory in China before – what is a good first step. We have had shows on recently that focus on just buying from US distributors – when should someone make the jump to factory direct?

  • Connector.

    Scenarios for Buyers

    And when things go wrong with a factory order – how should the buyer react? Let’s say a couple scenarios

  • Connector.

    Production is late

  • Connector.

    Bad Quality

  • Connector.

    Case Studies

    Any examples or case studies that would be good for listeners to hear?

  • Connector.

    Motivation

    How do you stay motivated – I see you are very focused and hard working – and a Gary Vee Fan!

  • Connector.

    Contact

    And how can people find you online- you, like me, do too many things – you have the sourcing business, the podcast, and Enter China – what are some links we can add?

People / Companies / Resources Mentioned in this Episode

Episode Length 35:11

That is all folks. Rico is a great guy I have gotten to know from being inside Enter China .co – he is a member who signed up, took advice, learned from others, and rose the ranks to partner of the community.

Hope today’s show inspired some of you to take action in your business and life. You may not be happy where you are, and heck, some things I do I still don’t enjoy – but we need to make small steps each day to get closer to our dream. Let’s do those together.

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Podcast Transcription

“Quite Often there would be this quiet guy in the background who looks like a nobody. He’s the boss and the whole time he’s just been like analyzing and assessing how serious you are.”

Introduction: Welcome to the Global From Asia podcast where the daunting process of running an international business in Hong Kong is broken down into straight up actionable advice. And now your host, Michael Michelini.

Mike: Good Day from Bangkok! Sneaking in this podcast welcome message from DCBKK. I’m gonna keep today short. I’m heading to the airport in about 6 hours, to go to Smart China Sourcing Summit where I’ll be hosting a panel. So today’s show, we have with us Rico, my business partner in the Enter China community talking about his journey, how he made moves, came over to China, progressed from an English teacher to a business owner and it is Canton Fair season right in the midst of it, so we have a page of all the events and different things happening at globalfromasia.com/cantonfair and the show notes as always globalfromasia.com/episode145.

Mike: Alright! Live from the, I guess it’s from a backyard, I don’t know.

Rico: It’s a gym, like it’s an adult jungle gym, I think.

Mike: Yeah, we’re in a Chinese garden in Shenzhen and we have with us, Rico, my partner, in Enter China. So thanks for being here, Rico.

Rico: No problem man, it’s been a long time coming since you’re on my podcast.

MIke: Yeah, it was fun, that was a deep one. I don’t know if we’re gonna get so deep today the Global From Asia show is a little bit shorter than your podcast.

Rico: Yeah, I tried to do that temperedly like get to know your soul type episode.

Mike: So you’re, you’re here, we are usually in Guangzhou , we are doing this in person so you might hear some squeaking Chinese baby shoes, it’s not my kids, it’s random kids but we are in the backyard and you know. I just thought it will be more fun to do an outdoors and take a break. We’re working hard, we’re doing webinars today so we are in between Enter China webinars and you’re doing a great job with talking about the sourcing tips and tricks for people, you know, searching online for Alibaba or….

Rico: The hands down best way to find the factory.

Mike: There you go. So let’s dig-in a little bit more about you. We don’t go so deep, you know but you’re originally from Africa and you’re now in China, that could be so long story but let’s get started here.

Rico: Yes. So I was born in Zambia Southern, Africa, and at age 10. Well basically my parents had that various businesses, my dad actually is an internet entrepreneur, I guess, and then my mom had a couple of retail stores. So, at some stages, they wanted to move to states. So at age 10, I moved to states, was in Orlando, Florida for couple of years and then kinda went back for a bit. They went back to for a bit and ended up in Canada. So I kind of, I guess I’m identify with being Canadian. Yeah, then I was in Canada’s graduating school and taking about business and trying to figure out what is the quickest route to become a successful entrepreneur and I came across Enter China show. At that time was an elevator life and I decided to move to China. Just like I remember the day was just like I had this epiphany moment, me and my friends are studying mandarin for fun. We took like an introductory course and we’re like let’s go try and meet like girls, Chinese girls and the language exchange and that day was like every single girl being like “my name is in Chinese” I was like “what she will call”, I’m moving to China and then 8 months later, I joined EC and hopped to a plane and came down to Guangzhou.

Mike: Great! That was really awesome! So what year was that about?

Rico: That was 2014. So I decided in 2013 and I moved specifically September 2014.

Mike: Okay very cool, very cool and then so then what you do when you got here?

Rico: Just trying to find myself, I guess. Actually I met one EC member, Keenan. He was at the time stoop. He’s back in Guangzhou but he was very much like based here and he just kinda showed me around like, those was one of the coolest things that happened to me. My second day in China was just like I had no idea. He took me around and then he helped me find an apartment, then I started studying Mandarin in a Guangdong University foreign studies changed over to Sun Yat-sen. Took just the first foundation courses and I started teaching English as well and during that time period obviously I was a part of EC so I was just like trying you know, a crowdfunding campaign. It was such a big thing within that community so I had couple ideas for products. I gave them all away, there’s one, it’s like it was a travel accessories and it had some special feature. I honestly think I could do that campaign in the future but yeah it was essentially like a suitcase that had, it helped you efficiently pack your clothes so you could get more space. And I had the idea and I thought it was a good idea and I got quite a bit of validation from friends and family just telling them and then I sat down with ChinaMike actually, who became my business partner and he was obviously the sourcing master and he had a couple kickstarter campaign, I started telling him a lot of product. He’s just like “Ok, have you ever seen anything like this?” I was like “No, it’s an original design” and he’s like “do you have the money to start making molds for this thing” I was like “no”. He’s like “You probably gonna need at least 5k to get a crowdfunding campaign going” and I was again “I don’t have $5000” so back to the drawing board.

Mike: Got it.

Rico: Yep.

Mike: But maybe he have at least said maybe you can, you still keep that in your back pocket right?

Rico: Im telling you, look out.

Mike: Right, so that leads on the next point, saying you got into sourcing which you’re still doing with Source Find Asia.

Rico: Exactly.

Mike: And ChinaMike which is not me, to be clear.

Rico: You should be ChinaMike as well.

Mike: So how did, so you’re just re-mentioning you met him, you share him your idea and he gives feedback, so then, so how did you get to do business together?

Rico: So essentially, I guess when I joined the CNA came down I was one of those members where I was kind of like, somewhat I was active but not greedy active, what I mean by that I was telling people what I’m doing but I wasn’t necessarily like the guy posting everyday being like “Hey guys” you know, and I think Nick, this is something that Nick ReMill, the co-founder, he’s really good at identifying strengths in people and I think he saw something in me and he knew that Mike was looking for a new partner in the business and he just made the introductions so we started off with his few project like I helped him on his crowdfunding campaign the last he did, and also helped him sourced like a couple just you know small sourcing job. You know he like, we connected on podcast actually big fan of the Joe Rogan experience. That was one of the first conversation that we had I guess the work we did combined with our sort of personality jelling. He just kind of, as well for me I was on the staged where I had a couple filled of ideas I was kind of rearing to start off something, and I was like “Hey man! Are you interested in you know doing something together” and he said “Yeah i wanna revamp Source Find Asia, loved to bring you on as partner” and yeah the rest was history.

Mike: Very cool. So, yes it seems like, you know, I think we’re similar and you know we’re just taking action, we’re just, we’re making things happen and you took it step by step, right? Like so you are in canada in 2013 and you’re listening to Enter China, watching their YouTube channel and then you start practicing some Chinese.

Rico: Exactly.

Mike: And you just get out here and make things happen, that’s great man.

Rico: Yeah. I mean the thing is, it’s simple. Like, you know, I think people over complicate things and they over think things. I remember when people asked me why am I moving to China? I was like, well I’m looking at two guys that are my age, they were on my age when they moved to China, not particularly, they didn’t go to Harvard. You know they didn’t have some crazy background.Just two normal guys that I could relate to, dudes that I could probably have beer with and you know they took their leap and they went to place where there are opportunities so yeah then of course if they’ve done it before, it makes it much easy for us, for new guys coming in, right? So anybody that comes to China right now much, I’m kind of envious cause your growth would be much quicker than any of us.

Mike: Totally, dude. Like, I don’t even wanna think about my almost 10 years now and there was just shooting in dark thing man. Now it’s internet and Wechat group and this is crazy. Now totally different but so, yeah. I mean, you know, we’re kinda talking about your show, you know, Made in China show, so was that, that was after the source find asia or…

Rico: Yeah. that was like, again one of the first conversation that me and Mike had was about podcast and you know, I doubled in podcast a bit, just kind of stupid stuff internal but I did that I have a little bit of experience in that arena in terms of how to set it up and what’s with love for that and then you know Michael said he’s a huge fan of podcast. He wanted to do his own kind of podcast and I said “Well you know let’s do something that can help promote the business” and we both love it. So basically, the podcast about 3 months after we started the business and you know the approached was to record 5 episodes, upload them to itunes, trying get friends and family to review and then start to grow organically. From this, what we do is interview China business experts similar to yourself. I think Global From Asia podcast is more financial and you know sort of a little bit expansive with Asia minus more manufacturing in China based and it’s been cool because one of other cores up is to get customer which is the goal but it also allowed me to interact with people that are significantly more successful, experienced than me and learn from them. So it’s something I actually didn’t even think about when I’m starting about the podcast.

Mike: Yeah. I agree. I mean it is definitely an awesome way that the network can connect with, with really cool people and share that with the world just well so you know, you can help others at the same time. So you know, I think in the community here you know sourcing is still a major way of people doing a business, being entrepreneur, specially the Enter China community, a lot of people are manufacturing and selling overseas. What are some of biggest mistake you see with, you know, members and clients you’re working with?

Rico: It is something that Mike, ChinaMike said to me early on, which I really resonates with me quite often, because I feel like quite of few people feel like China is like a giant Walmart

Mike: Let’s go down the street and checkout the factory.

Rico: It’s like “Hey! We can go out at five and picked out this slippers for me” it’s like. No, it doesn’t work like that. You really need to do your own research and be prepared before you contact the sourcing agent. So that’s one thing I would say is preparation is key. You guys have to know what your product is, how it’s made, at least a little bit of how it’s made. You don’t have to be an engineer but you can do research into that specially in this age of internet, right? And secondly, from that I think is you know not setting expectation with the supplier. You might think that the, when a supplier says it’s gonna be a good quality, your idea of good quality is very different from theirs. So it’s really important to hamroll those details, “mei wenti” or yeah and at the end when it’s not really what you’re expecting it’s “chabudo”. It’s good enough. Yes so really take the time to set experience, understand what your supplier expecting in terms of quality and what you’re expecting. Do your diligence, make sure that, in fact this is something I think people don’t think about is when it comes down to QC, I say QC starts when you’re sourcing the supplier. You know QC does not start after mass production or at the end, the first step is finding the right supplier and because that could make your life significantly easier. If you find a very professional factory here.

Mike: I mean, yes some sort of business partner, I know, a wife, you know friends, it’s a long term relationship.

Rico: Exactly. Yeah, so I would say take your time. I think a lot of people are rushed in, they want all this, I’ll get this order done really quick.” Take your time and make sure that everything is setup correctly.

Mike: Yep, so you know ,I think even for me when I was selling online, I wasn’t yet buying from factories. It was something I did later and you know even we have podcast on the show, where people are still buying from US distributors and it’s something I don’t really even know the right answer but when do you think somebody should start to think about buying factory directly. I even think sometimes you don’t always advised people to do it, right?

Rico: Yeah. I sometimes tell people not to do it because they are not prepared or they are not ready. It’s tough because I think they also bring in a little bit of you know some ethical moral and maybe even what do you call it, nationalistic ideals I guess. If you’re from a state and you wanna support, you know, US distributors and stuff like that.

MIke: Yeah, there is this patriotism even sometimes with the Enter China ads video on Facebook we got some hater comments.

Rico: Exactly. It’s like why you don’t source in America, it’s like the reality is, honestly, yes you can but of course if you, if you’re starting off and you wanna have higher margins and probably coming to China, is the best thing and then, a lot of times it’s just not possible to find a certain products in the states that are manufactured. They just because maybe they don’t have enough workers, the cost of labor are higher, maybe they don’t have the actual technology involves to that. Sometimes people look at China and they says “Oh well you know it’s poor quality”, made in China is always a joke on them, but to be honest, it’s what you pay for, essentially like if you, you could get the highest quality stuff in China, you can also get the cheapest quality stuff in China and then it really comes down to “Are you prepared to pay the right amount?” And then put in the work to find the supplier.

Mike: I think. Yeah, it’s about volume so normally the magic number is a thousand pieces, is kinda like a keyword “EC 1000 MOQ1” it doesn’t seem that it even matter what the product is, it’s just a thousand pieces but there’s a negotiable too but usually the price will get higher if you try go less. I think it’s about scale, it’s about getting the numbers up there.

Rico: Yeah, I mean, yeah it’s definitely the scale. Getting the numbers up there if you have a budget and then also like what I said if you’re ready to do the prep work involved with that.

Mike: Alright. So I think people always learn from mistakes of others and there’s always a good way to improve their business or maybe you can start without making those same mistake. So you know, I remember from your webinars and even my own experiences, there’s usually a couple of common mistake or problems that come up with manufacturing so at least maybe there is others too that are missing but the first one would be the production is late you know like you wanted to be maybe a Christmas order in the US or overseas or holidays. How do you suggests some make deals with like, a late orders?

Rico: If their production got delayed, I mean if the production is delayed you can always of course negotiate with the factory to get discount or credits on your next order, that’s probably the most common thing, also just kind of find out why, because a lot of time when the production is late it means that they probably took on another order when they weren’t supposed too. And if you have the money you can pay for them to put your order above other people you know. I actually had that situation. I’ve been with a client where we were in mid-production and then the factory said “Hey, I don’t think we’re gonna be able to hit the deadline because we have too many orders and we don’t have enough workers” so we actually paid for overtime.

Mike: Good.

Rico: Which actually, we shared the cost with the factory. They said there is gonna be $5000 then we negotiated it down to like $2000 or something so like there’s ways around it, definitely credit, I think you always wanna add a buffer into your production schedule, I think just if you’re gonna manufacture for Christmas, start in July. You know. But it’s better to get the product early than to have it delayed.

Mike: Agreed, so yeah like in the sales contract that should be covered right before…

Rico: Yeah, exactly.

Mike: Not after, a lot of people don’t use contracts or assume a lot of things and then too should have this outline upfront.

Rico: Yes. So in my, even on the sales agreement template that we provided for people..

Mike: We could linked to that

Rico: Linked. Yup there’s a late fee, you know there’s a late fee involved there so even if we decide not to pay for the overtime we’ll share the cost overtime. They would have to pay us a late fee it varies depending on the product, the factory. I was going to say take into consideration that national holidays in China there’s a lot them and quite often the factories aren’t thinking about the national holidays when they’re setting up that order so they will say “Yes, it’s gonna be 45 days, working days” then you factor that into 2 months but in between there is 3 weeks of holidays then youre delayed so you know , when you are charting out the production schedule, ask them when are the national holidays and double check for yourself and factor that to your production schedule

Mike: That was a good one. Yeah cause they will say days, right? And they won’t give you a date

Rico: No. I mean they’ll say 45 working days right and you will think, and you’ll charted out and be like ok so you mean the production gonna be finished in October and then they will say “Yeah, yeah it’s gonna be finished on October x dates, between this dates” but they’re not even checking their calendar to see that hey there’s is a national holiday on October 1st, we just had the Mid Autumn Festival last week as well like, those 2 holidays combined about a week, it’s gonna push the production back right. So you wanna take those things in considerations for sure.

Mike: Make sense. That’s a good tip. And of course the classic bad quality so you know, they made the product and it is not what you thought it was. Hopefully you caught it before it left China maybe. So, I guess there’s also different scenario maybe. I had one where I found a bad quality when it got to America but maybe we talk about catching it before it left.

Rico: Yeah, so this comes to preventions. You should. I fortunately have not had any situation where we paid for product and it was all bad. What you wanna do of course , if you’re going through that process where the factory first sampling phase, you know signing off on samples if you make any design changes, making you sample or batch of sample. You can do a test run if you’re placing a larger order, you can do a test run on its production and we talked about this on the webinar when you’re doing that production test. If you wanna test the production line, make sure you understand how many units they require you to order to test the production line otherwise they’re gonna do the, they’re gonna make those samples in engineering department and there would be a perfect 10 neat samples that won’t reflect the production quality. So that’s 1; and then 2, spot check also called the DPI during production inspection you can do that, 10%, 30%, 50% depending on your products, depending how the factory manufactures the product as well. So that’s super important because you can nip quality issue at the bag like if you find that you checked on 10% and 90% of the 10% is defective that’s an easy fix ,right? Whereas if you only do that FRI which is the Final Run of Inspection, in the end and you found out that 90% of the products are defective, you know, now you have to start negotiating with the factory for them to either give you a credit or go fix it or to remake it then you’re losing time even they agreed to remake it, it’s you, you have lose time so it’s better to have a couple checks in between and prevent anything from escalating, right?

Mike: It makes sense.

Rico: If you do end up in the situation.

Mike: Yes, let’s do this.

Rico: Where this, that the quality, pray to God, no, I would think that, okay just don’t react, in a, don’t get angry. It’s a first to do, don’t do that, they want to make money, they know that they messed up especially when you pointed out and it’s very clear and you’re comparing the sample and stuff and so even if they are pretending like they didn’t make a mistake, they know it, it’s just that it means they wanna save face. So just kind of calm on, be calm and be like okay let’s come up with the solution, can you guys remake this, can we fix it? You know something like that, can we work out some sort of deal where you know I get a credit or something. and then you would have 9/10 if you are reasonable and you didn’t have a sales agreement take place and the factories are professional they should be able to remake or at least fix it if it’s not as big of an issue.

Mike: Sure, so for some my bad experiences, usually there yeah Chinese factory owners in my experience are very level headed. They don’t seem to get at least the one, I dont know, dont get up, don’t show their emotion

Rico: No.

Mike: Right.

Rico: No, no.

Mike: You know what I’m saying?

Rico: Exactly.

Mike: You’re like I am, I’m less emotional I used to be, but I, yeah I think also maybe it’s a Westerner thing what we, or I am more transparent or I show how I feel.

Rico: You’re showing what you’re feeling.

Mike: And then it doesn’t seem even adjust the way that they feel then the I’ve been to this factory where I had a bad quality in. I’ve been sitting in their big wood desk.

Rico: Yeah.

MIke: On the other side, they don’t seem to..

Rico: Chinese manufacturer are very very stoic people. I mean just a funny story, completely unrelated but going on that, quite often when I go to the factory for the first time and we are sitting down in their you know the office, and you know they’re serving the tea and everything and there’s like, there’s a bunch of people around, you aren’t quite sure what function is.

Mike: Who are these people?

Rico: But then there atleast one dude who tends to be the Engineer and he’s like giving technical advice and then there’s like a Sales Rep. Sale Rep is usually like a woman and then they will be like another gain, a desk and you’ll just can of like talking to these two people and you’ll think only that the Sales Rep is only person that can speak English and quite often there would be this quiet guy in the background who looks like a nobody and you be talking for an hour and a half and at some staged he’ll just chimed in with knowledge bombs in English and you will find, he’s the boss, he’s the boss of the factory and he speak perfect English or close to perfect English and the whole time he’s just been like analyzing and assessing how serious you are, and now that he feels like you’re an actual viable customer now he talks to you, and I find that hilarious.

Mike: I think it’s negotiation, I think not just in China but I’ve read some negotiation books and it’s actually an advantage to have more than 1 person on your team that’s there, cause it’s like you said they, you can pay, you can step back from the conversation and..

Rico: Exactly.

Mike: ..and look at it from a higher level and you can decide how to react or how to negotiate. So I think Chinese are very professional negotiator. Alright. And so do you have any kind of case study that you wanna share about or you know what we’ve been talking about?

Rico: Yeah, I guess I have a couple. So again going back to the bad quality thing I talked about you know about QC, starts with doing the diligence upfront right picking the right factory . This is a situation happened actually with one of my first client and we don’t actually source the factory, they came to us with factory, and ChinaMike was like we should have option b and c but they were in the rush to going to production they wanna hit..

Mike: Bad sides..

Rico: Bad sides, they were in the rush to go into production they were like okay look we already been talking to, partially it was because they have been talking to supplier for months and that also comes down to communication issue and stuff but they were like, look can you just please go and like assess their factory and kind of negotiate the price and get the sales agreement signed so you know we went down to Shenzhen. We spent two days there. Went to the factory and inspected it, talked about the project. Second day, we told our client that we felt that the factory was, there something off, we felt like there’s a little bit small for what they are promising and we couldn’t pinpoint exactly what it was but was like it was a feeling that we have, and trust your gut instinct. Because you know, if there is something off, probably you just don’t want to take the risk. But you know we said “look, well lets atleast source a couple of different option”, and they were like “No, we don’t have time, it’s gonna take too long, lets just sign the sales agreement”. So we were like. you know first, one of my first client, I’m not gonna I was like “ok fine” so we went down, we send the sales agreement and low and behold, we were lucky because we made, they lost a greater bit of money, but they made a mold and then we went to the sampling fees and the first 50 samples that we got were all bad like horrible samples and the communication for that initial two months was also a dismal so we knew at that moment that we have to shift supplier and we were lucky in the sense that we haven’t go to mass production with them. We saw these issue upfront and early.

Mike: Great!

Rico: But I credit mike, ChinaMike for that, because I really, I had almost no experiences so he was like guiding me and telling me its not correct and you know let’s look for this issue and things like that and keep on monitoring. Then another case study, I will give a sample that I used from the webinar, one of our EC members, he is an amazon FBA guy which just getting started and he had a very small order, right. nothing, it’s not customize product, very small order, an expensive per unit cost, and he was just in a rush to get his listing in amazon because I’m sure you guys have heard about FBA and then how much money before making it there before it’s gold rush. He didn’t take the time to really set expectation where to draft a sales agreement with his supplier and he just went based on sample that they sent him off of tulball, tulball is equivalent of eBay and Amazon you know. So he gets the sample , so sample grade per unit cost is right pays and then pays deposit, they do the mass production, they send it, he pays the final deposit without checking it first. They send it to him cause he ain’t based on China, and he was inspecting the products and literally like 80% of them were unsellable. He couldn’t sell it. He even couldn’t send it to amazon and of course that supplier was just like, oh you already paid us so you know good luck buddy. What he found out was that the sample that they’ve sent, it is not even from their factory. It was like a sample that they bought, this often happens as well at China. So that’s why you kind of you have to take the time to set the quality expectation and if something, you’re saying to the factory if this happened then that.. right, type T T T, and then as well, you know checking, like he should check the production before he paid, even though the order was tiny like he should have somebody inspect that. I mean it was a small lesson because he only lost about i think $300 but still, you know, other people might have lost a thousand.

Mike: Maybe we take out a quick break for a photo. (speaks chinese)

Rico: 1, 2, 3 podcast. Everytime I take a picture with you, you’re wearing the same shirt.

Mike: I’m always wearing this a….Sze Sze

Rico: Sze sze

Mike: Okay. Will add this someone up but we leave a part for that. So check the show notes for picture. Alright. Yeah I remember him sharing the story. I guess the lesson there is start small, right?

Rico: Start small, yeah.

Mike: And if he’s willing to loses money to learn.

Rico: Make their mistakes.

Mike: I always joke with, I think I said on your podcast too but this is my MBA like my first few years. I invested, it’s education, right? So the best way to learn at least for most people is by doing it so.

Rico: Yeah, I mean, I consumed content around. Like I watched all elevator lived video which is like 100 and whatever and then as well like you know I read all these business books,I studied Business Administration Management and nothing could have prepared me for running my whole business, Made in China, like I learned way more in my first 3 months, 3 – 6 months of running a company than I ever did in 4 years of college you know. So yeah it is doing it , doing it, you learn from your experience, just doing it.

Mike: Exactly, we won’t say like act them on a show, some motivation you know, like I know you’re a Gary V. fan.

Rico: Yeah.

Mike: I am too but you seem like a super fan.

Rico: I think, you think of a bigger fan than I am, I just kind of got, I don’t know how this happened but I started posting into China private Facebook group every Monday, the hashtag Gary V Mondays and it’s like a motivational video. I was really just getting into Gary V and i start posting stuff.

Mike: Okay, okay.

Rico: And then now, it’s like okay, I have to do this every week because people were expecting it.

Mike: Yeah generally men, no you meditation, we both meditate and..

Rico: Holiday so I mean, this is a conversation I can go very deep.

Mike: I know this is tough, maybe just a few points.

Rico: Yeah, I will just, I will start on how did I get in on this kind stuff`. So I got to self improvement back in 2011. I was kind of I was not like, I’m shy, I was shy when i met the people for the first time. So I knew that I had a certain skill set but I didn’t know how to like be myself when i meet people at the first time. So I started to get into, I started reading books about you know improving yourself and mind sets and things like that and so I just kinda went down the rabbit hole. One of the books was “The way of the Superior Human.” That’s one of those books that when you read it, it kinds of introduces you to other books and certain way of thinking. And then just going down that hole and actively meeting people that were also into self improvement, people that are actually doings things. One of my first customers was a guy that I met through self improvement forums. He’s actually one of my best friend now. So yeah I just kinda went down that rabbit hole and then you know you kinda, when you start reading those books you start to surround yourself with people that are also in the same mindset and those people keep you motivated. And then youre looking at your friends and your friends have successful business so your friends are doing fun things in their life and that pushes you and then of course accountability, mastermind groups, that’s, that was huge for me. I was quite a lazy person about 5, 6 years ago. Getting into accountability group taught me that I could do much more in a week, than I was originally I think I could do. And then I mentioned community, recently, with running two companies at 24. I realized that all this self improvement that I did, while it’s really good and got me motivated and it’s a reason why I’m in China really. I wasn’t enough like I didn’t have enough of the toolkit to keep myself motivated and in this like, in this stressful time, because of tempress, I downloaded an app called appspace, and that kind of start you of with 10 mins of meditation everyday and you can scale up from there. So now I meditate everyday. It’s been super really helpful just staying present and staying calm and not worrying too much about “Oh you not got this thing in 3 months” and things like that… And yeah so those are the basic stuff that you can get into.

Mike: Yeah. Great, great.

Rico: And then also I started reading books about stories you send me.

Mike: I’ve been listening more than reading because it seems a little bit sometimes dry.

Rico: A good book for that to get you started would be, Ryan Holiday: “The obstacle, The Way”, and then you can follow that up with the “Egoist Away”

Mike: Great, great. Thanks Rico! And yeah, this have been a great great talk and how can people find you online?

Rico: So if you’re gonna reach out to me, of course my email address is [email protected], website is sourcefindasia.com, Made in China podcast, so sourcefindasia.com/madeinchina. and yeah those are the best way you can reach me.

Mike: Cool, cool.

Rico: Yeah.

Mike: Alright! Thanks Rico! And of course enterchina.com for people interested getting involved with the private membership site which we are both part of so.

Rico: We’re both partners and you know we are doing webinars, we’re giving monthly meetups, we gonna make Canton fair thing coming up next month.

Mike: Too many things happening but by the time shows live, hopefully things a little bit calm down. It’s gonna be crazy October for sure. Alright thank you!

Mike: Ok, that’s all folks! Rico is a really great guy, I got to know him a lot more over the few months working together in Enter China. He’s a member that signed up, took advice, was humble, listen to others and rose to the rakes and now he’s even a partner in the community. So keep it up, Rico! You’re awesome! So hope today’s show inspires you guys. Take action in your business as well as in your life. Be happy where you are and heck, some things I do I still not enjoy but we need, we just make small steps each day to get closer to our dreams. Let’s make it happen and let’s do it together. Take Care!

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