Name of Recipient:
Ms. Irene Htay Htay Saw
As a vastly successful and developed country, Singapore requires a large amount of capable foreign workers in industries ranging from manufacturing to domestic helpers. It is with this very demand that Ms. Irene’s Shwe Phoenix Pte Ltd steps in.
Shwe Phoenix Pte Ltd is a company that began in 1997 that handled the recruitment of capable foreign workers to work in industries as diverse as construction and manufacturing. Additionally, the company also handle the recruitment of maids for the typical Singaporean household.
When asked about her initial decision in becoming an entrepreneur, Ms. Irene expressed the feeling that there is a distinct lack in the amount of foreign workers in Singapore. The lack of workers has allowed Ms. Irene to carve out a career that allows her to provide resources for Myanmar workers, and also to have the pleasure of owning her own company. The surging demand for foreign workers in recent times is one of the reason for her choosing to set up a business in this industry. For example, Ms. Irene mentioned that she has observed a huge demand for foreign workers in the airline industry, as such, she sees her foray into entrepreneurship to fill that void.
Previously located at Hougang Mall, Ms. Irene faced the tough challenge of poor sales rate in the first six months of her business. During that time, Ms. Irene mentioned that she was a “one man show” as she was coordinating everything required for the upkeep of her company. Through sheer hard work and determination, Ms. Irene managed to overcome these challenges due to word-of-mouth as customers gave glowing reviews of her services, even though she seldom does advertisements to promote the company’s services. Her sense of drive saw the company’s sales at the end of the month to be almost comparable to that of bigger companies.
One of the major ways that the company is able to set themselves apart is the belief that there is a workable solution to every single problem. This is a stance that Ms. Irene firmly stands behind as she has a strong belief in the trustworthiness of her services. Her predominantly Myanmarese staff helps facilitate Ms. Irene’s sense of belief to the larger customer base. The company sees itself expanding as Ms. Irene wants to open another office in two months time in the Rochor Area. The company sees itself venturing more into the maid industry within the next five years.
Ms. Irene mentioned that one of her proudest achievements to date is the company’s expansion of services to include the hiring of maids. This shows the company’s ability to detect a growing demand in this area and provide necessary services. She extolls the virtues of “service” and a “good attitude towards clients” as essential to entrepreneurship. She further adds that her hard work has paid off as she is seeing more business with each passing day, and this really motivates and inspires her on a daily basis.
Moreover, special efforts went into the naming of her company. According to Ms. Irene, the word “Shwe” literally translates to gold, in which Ms. Irene takes to symbolise the idea of preciousness. Also, as the phoenix is an auspicious bird, Ms. Irene hopes for the symbol of good luck for her company. The careful naming of her company goes to show Ms. Irene’s attention to detail in every aspect of her own business creation.
“A successful business person must have commitment in what they do.” Ms. Irene said. “They have to provide quality service to their clients. They should also know best the direction of the company and its core mission, as they are the ones who will be leading the company forward.” Her core beliefs go to show that success can only be measured by the amount of hard work and commitment, and nothing else.
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