It will be redundant to start the recap by saying, it’s been a hectic year. In fact my pass few years have been a roller coaster. A quick flashback:
Packed up 10 years of life in HCMC to 3 luggages, left family, friends and job behind to relocate to KL for a job offer – which turned out not to me the right one for me. Started Shoe Mo with Jack.
Incorporated Shoe Mo Sdn Bhd, full time job day time, clean shoes night time. Managed to open our very first outlet in Damansara Utama. Licensed Shoe Mo to Johor Bahru.
2018 – Shoe Mo takes off aggressively & becomes regional brand.
Feb – Shoe Mo got investment and I quit my job to work full time in Shoe mo.
March – Opened Shoe Mo Sunway
April – Licensed Shoe Mo to Penang
Jul – Shoe Mo Bangsar
Aug – Licensed Shoe Mo to Brunei
Nov – Took over Shoelution and rebranded to Shoe Mo Singapore
Nov – Licensed Shoe Mo to Miri, East Malaysia
Dec – Shoe Mo Velocity (First mall outlet) supposed to be open but delay until Q1 2019 due to mall procedures.
Working toward sustainability for Malaysia, Singapore and expansion to Indonesia.
2018 marks a different year of my life. I quit my job to focus on Shoe Mo whole heartedly. I’ve never been this focused before. I truly taste the sweetness and bitter of entrepreneurship journey – the late night discussions, the struggles with finances, the effort to fix problems, the happiness seeing my brand grow.
Shoe Mo team has been in its biggest size ever – 20 members across 2 countries. The team is still young, but diversified with different races and nationality. I see them grow by solving problems everyday, and learning from each other. I wish I can guide them more, sometimes I feel bad about it.
I have switched my roles eventually from being more hands on to shop operation, to be more of planning and overall supervision. I realize I need to grow, together with Shoe Mo, to be able to accommodate its scale. I need to shift my focus to what make sense, not in one day, but in months or years later. I learnt how to let go, and accept and let my team handle it. I’m glad that the operation team has learnt how to clean shoes better than me, shop managers take better care of the shop and upsell better than me, Marketing team has respond to customer message faster than me, management team has more product and legal knowledge than me. I’m so happy and thankful for my team that I can have more room the breath but I need to self-improve and grow in order to be able to lead them.
People say if you don’t take loan or mortgage, you’re not fully entrepreneur yet, and for the first time, we took loan to facilitate our fast growth rate. I realized we grow too fast and it gets scary. So next year’s top goal is to sustain shoe mo as a whole, and subtly expand to Indonesia.
Maybe because I’m approaching my 30s soon, so I get more and more paranoid over safety and health concern. I started to commit to workout routine (still not very consistent), monitor my sleep and heart rate, be choosy on what I ate (still lots of KOI and Gongcha tho), and be concerned on my mental wellness.
And 2018 has witnessed a closure of a relationship, and an opening of a new one. I’m grateful for what has happened and I’m excited for whats waiting ahead. One told me “I don’t think relationship can be “solved” or “figured out” – it’s a WIP”. I couldn’t agree more. It is constant effort and I am still learning everyday. And I know I am not the easiest to handle type of girl (lol). Thank you for being patient and making things work with me, you know who you are.
To 2019, I can’t promise a less happening year, but I have a feeling it will be a good one. I only have one personal goal for 2019 – 2 litre of water, 8 hours of sleep and work out!
Onwards and Upwards,