Sharing ‘The Present’

(Contributed photo)

YOU probably stumbled upon the trending online videos “Bayari na imong utang oi (Pay your debt)” or “Nganong pobre man gihapon ko? (Why am I still poor?)” and asked who is this man sharing loads of insights and tips about finance, business, life, and everything in between.

He is Jan Wenzel So Ocampo, founder of the business and finance online content provider, The Present. The Present has currently over 240,000 followers online. He is a Davao-based pure Chinese digital marketing specialist who turned out to be a sales, operations, and logistics supervisor of an importation and agriculture firm and is now embarking on his new full-time job – financial expert, adviser, online influencer, and businessman.

When he created The Present, he only has two major goals – to help people become financially literate and to inspire others to live a meaningful life.

“Why are there people who have money but still unhappy? You really can see that they are just making money just because. And there are also people who are passionate about what they’re doing but unfortunately struggle to make money. I admire those who are happy by just making enough money. I wanted to point out that whatever we are doing in life, it has to have a meaning in order for us to live beautifully,” he shared.

How ‘The Present’ came to be

He narrated that he was inspired to create The Present after he heard and read Gary Vaynerchuk’s audiobook Crush It! Ocampo said Vaynerchuk’s line about “maximizing the power of social media in spreading one’s advocacy while building a business” pushes him to create his own page, first on Facebook. It was on February 2, 2018. He said his first content was a Facebook live video of him explaining the things people can see and benefit from the page.

He emphasized that The Present focuses on three things: Business, Finance, and Life principles.

“It is called The Present because for the ‘Life’ aspect, we believe that every day should be treated as a gift or present. While for business and finance side, we also believe that we should always do our best to keep our business up-to-date, be relevant in the current realities or in other words to be in the now, to be in the present moment,” he said.

At present, his page has hundreds of videos, seven of these - as of writing - breached over a million views. From a Facebook page, he also extended his online presence on Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, Spotify, and iTunes (Podcasts).

“A lot of people have told me even before that I have strength or skills in making complicated things simple. And I consider this a gift that I needed to share to others, to inspire them,” Ocampo added.

Financial literacy

Asked about how he views Dabawenyos and Filipinos in general about financial literacy, he honestly commented that about 98% of Filipinos don’t have a clue about it.

“Filipinos always opt to debt whenever encountered with financial woes. And when their income is not enough they resort to borrow money and most of us don’t look at the interest rates. These behavioral patterns made me conclude that a lot of people here don’t have an idea as to how to manage their finances,” he said, adding debt has become part of some – if not most - Filipinos’ lifestyle.

This reality inspired him to create The Present and release contents that are intentionally made to create financial awareness.

Giving tips and information deemed helpful in managing one’s finances and business has been majority of his works under The Present for nearly two years now.

He proudly shared that a number of individuals have been messaging them saying they have started their journey to financial freedom after watching his videos.

“It feels good to know that what we are doing had an impact to other people. Some even shared that they don’t understand the concept of investment before, now they do because of us,” he said.

A couple of his followers also messaged him that they paid their debts after watching his video: “Bayari na imong utang oi (Pay your debt).”

Making it as a business

What started as just a content creation site has now expanded as a consultancy and training firm with legal business name - TP Inc. Business Consultancy Services. He now runs his business with his wife, Adelaine Mirzi Chua-Ocampo.

The Present now offers financial literacy seminars, digital marketing, and talks on how to start and maintain a business, among others.

“I don’t consider myself as an expert. I just share based on how I did it. But I always emphasize in all my talks that what works in a specific company may not work to the other,” Ocampo said.

Before ending the year, Ocampo took a calculated risk and decided to leave his current job and focus his time and effort to his new business.

He shared he is optimistic with his new direction as he saw how his business grew.

“It is worth the leap. The exciting part was I already earned a lot while doing it part time, how much more if I go full time?” he said.

But running The Present isn’t always a smooth sail and drive, there are bumps and waves along the way, just like any other businesses.

“When we are thrown with criticisms, we ignore it and try to understand the critics if where they are coming from,” he said.

But he admitted that sometimes it gets painful considering his pure intention is to share information and help.

But he recognized that pleasing everyone is a mission that will surely go south.

“Some people will agree to you, some people won’t and at the end of the day you just have to choose your battle. I view it as normal and the faster we can accept it, the easier it will be,” Ocampo shared.

Moving forward

The Present founder said he is excited of what is ahead of him and his business. He plans to publish a business-related book and launching a new approach in vlogging. He also said he wanted to have his own stand-alone building where all of his events will be housed.

“I am not sure when these will happen but I’m sure it’s gonna happen,” he said.

On money and getting rich

“My end goal is not to be just rich but to be wealthy. The difference between the two is wealthy measures the amount of time, rich is just the amount of money. After all, it is not about having billions, it is more about understanding cash flow and valuing money,” Ocampo said.

Asked about what his view on money is and how people treat it, Ocampo shared: “Money is not the problem, it is how people use it and think about it. Money only magnifies who you are. If you are selfish and greedy, you will never share a cent or two no matter the situation is but if you are generous, with or without enough money, you will really find a way to give or share.”


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