This article marks the closing chapter of my semi self-employment journey as an offshore broker.
End of August 2019, I received the payslip which state that my commission is SGD 18.75k (Initially I forecast this project to bring in at least SGD 30k because profit to firm is about SGD 120k as I have seen the revenue and estimated the cost of sales). This is further split into 2.75k considered as employer contributed CPF, remaining SGD 16k is subjected to 20% CPF contribution. It means net cash = SGD 12.8k. I will not complain about the SGD 6,845 contribution to CPF. Then I will transfer every cents from OA to SA within the CPF account.
I am happy because I am being paid my commission. I am upset because to this date, I have requested twice to look at the both projects’ Profit & Loss statements but I have not received any.
Coming back to my present role, my boss did offer me an alternative role to work in a new joint venture between his company and an overseas main contractor. It is a nice gesture but he wants someone who is willing to work for a low salary (his startup theory, pay must be low) on a promise of profit sharing. Unfortunately, my heart and mind are set. I did not want to propose to him what sort of salary I am looking for. I feel that there is no point, he will just tell me this is the salary I am willing to pay, take it or leave it. In addition, from previous experience when you do not know the accounts, then what’s the point of profit sharing? If I tell you your bonus is $10,000 but the business has made a profit of $1,000,000 for the year, will you know it? You won’t as I will not show you the accounts as there is no transparency and you are just an employee.
The worst thing you can say to your mature employee when you are not in the best state of mind is,”I can use the money that I pay you to hire 2 to 3 fresh graduates, train them up and they can do more than you.” Firstly, training takes time and money. After you train the fresh graduates for 3 years, they will start to look for new jobs with their skill set. In order to keep them, you need to counter propose a higher salary or you have being consistently keeping them happy with better prospect of promotion or greater scope of work. Nothing is perfect, it is about building a team of young and mature employees. Always ask yourself, why should others work for you? Why you? Building a successful organisation is just like a soccer team, you need strikers, defenders, mid-fielders and goal keeper. You are the team coach.
Walk alone, you go fast. Walk with a team, you go far.
When I told him that I am going to become a full time Financial Consultant in October, he told me,”sell insurance ah.” Then he asked me to stop talking to clients and there is no need for any new entertainment.
I was thinking, “Erm…can you just give me the SGD 2,500 and I proceed to start my Financial Consultant training?”
Nonetheless, I will continue to facilitate some procurement stuff and follow up on the last lead. I believe in being professional with my work.
Things I Learn
- Whether you work or go into business with a partner, remember to have a definite agreement on profit sharing (if any). For example, if you are an employee, you need to indicate in your contract that profit sharing component can be 1% of project revenue or 20%-30% of project profit. If you are a business partner, that will depends on whether you are putting equal capital, then naturally profit sharing will be 50-50 based on shares allocation. However, if you are putting lesser money or no capital then the profit sharing will be proportionately lesser.
- Always be professional.
- Do not speak if you are not in the best state of mind.
1st October 2019 onward, I will be a free man. Tune and listen to your little voice, I have ignored it for very long.