It was an inspiring discussion at the HER® Entrepreneur Asia Series, with Dropee’s CEO and Co-founder, Lennise Ng joining a Southeast Asian group of panelist speakers – Grace Lin of Sing See Soon Floral & Landscape Pte Ltd from Singapore, Suangsan Chotithamaporn (San) of Thai Panacea from Thailand, and Giulia Soh of Giulia Fashion House from Vietnam. 

Moderated by Founder of H.E.R Entrepreneur Asia, Renee Tan, each of these esteemed female founders and leaders talked about how they are challenging all odds in order to transform, adapt, and build a sustainable business model during the pandemic.

“It’s about having the emotional resilience to be able to have a clear vision and strategy to get through these unprecedented times.”

Lennise Ng, CEO and co-founder at Dropee

Retail is Still Thriving

Running a business undoubtedly comes with its ups and downs – very much like an emotional journey. But there is hope, even today, as communities locally and internationally are uniting together to provide more attention towards the underserved. 

Coming from a family business in wholesale and distribution, Lennise realised that the local mom-and-pop stores are shrouded by larger retail chain outlets when in fact, they have a lot of growth potential that had no chance to be explored. 

“Retail is still here to thrive, it’s all about giving them the means to adopt digital solutions so they are able to sustain this tough period,” she said.

Grace, who also comes from a family business background, had to diversify her floral business by providing online consulting services instead of large amounts of face-to-face time. Even then, the digital transition has been smooth as the demand is still there.

Meeting New Consumer Demands

These are not normal times, and innovation is even more crucial to scale and meet consumer expectations.

“We’ve seen traditional wholesalers and brands adopting digital solutions in a heartbeat and gearing up their team to learn something new.”

Regionally, a lot more people are open to sell and build relationships online. Even businesses that have been operating manually for decades are adopting technical capabilities and becoming advocates in their own right. 

However, San from Thai Panacea, a community focusing on sustainability, is minimising technological advancements and prioritising her business on helping the environment, supporting locals, and educating people through the production of non-toxic health products.

Lennise provided a remarkable insight into building a product or service your customers want that should be radically valuable and different. 

“It is better to have 100 customers who really love your product than 100,000 customers who just like your product. Those 100 will be better advocates for your business,” she quipped. 

Getting Past Your Low Points

“Embracing that failure is not the end game,” Lennise shared. “Failing is a learning point and a peak for your individual and business growth.”

Lennise sharing her experiences at Her Entrepreneur Asia Series.

This is crucial for a startup founder to be aware of during the pandemic when there is much uncertainty ahead. The majority of founders fail because they do not embrace and acknowledge their failures but here’s a silver lining: The only way to go from a low point is UP!

Giulia resonated with this as well and added, ”Have a good support system and remember why you started your business. Why do you wake up every day to do what you do.”

The mentality of standing up for what you believe and to try, try, try again. Giving yourself the opportunity to make mistakes will facilitate instead of impeding your growth.

Last Words?

Lennise: Learn, Unlearn, and Relearn. Stay relevant in changing times.

Grace: There will always be a taller mountain. Continue setting goals and keep progressing.

Giulia: A stellar network is your net worth.

San: Embrace failure and you will eventually arrive at your destination. 

Click here to watch the full rerun of the HER® Entrepreneur Asia Series webinar!

About HER® Entrepreneur Asia
HER® Entrepreneur Asia is an omni-channel media platform with an aim to inspire, educate, empower and connect via an inclusive and diverse community of entrepreneurs, leaders, government and investors across Asia.

For businesses across Malaysia, Dropee is an e-commerce solutions provider that seeks to support our local B2B entities by providing them with a platform to help them streamline and manage their customers and inventories with efficiency and ease. We also help to connect businesses with one another via an online marketplace where they can reach out to more people in a fuss-free space.

To learn more about what we do, reach out to us for a free consultation with our team and get a headstart in digitising your business today!


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