24.03.2016 in Entrepreneurship, Latest by copaceticweb 0

Self-Confidence for Entrepreneurial Success

“Believe in yourself! Have faith in your abilities! Without a humble but reasonable confidence in your own powers you cannot be successful or happy.”
- Norman Vincent Peale

You may have come across many instances where inspirational speeches, books, movies and even personalities reiterate that it is important to for an individual to believe in themselves, i.e. it is important for an individual to have Self-confidence. However, many of us associate this trait with a negative connotation such as arrogance. In order to avoid this common misconception, let us first try to understand the concept of self-confidence.

The counseling center at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign has defined Self-confidence as “having a positive attitude, but with realistic views”, where they further identified that a self-confident person is a person who has a general control of their life. Therefore, self-confident person can be identified as an individual who believes in their capabilities while factoring in the conditions of reality.

Self-confidence is identified by Forbes as one of the common personality traits of entrepreneurs. The reasoning behind this is that entrepreneurs often face insurmountable problems at times, however their strong sense of self or self-confidence has created resilience to such pressures, as they are able to confidently pursue their ventures. As a result, the self-confidence of entrepreneurs have laid the foundation for successful business ventures.

A study by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation in 2014 , identified that 91% of the entrepreneurs who took part in the study were confident that their businesses will be successful in the next 12 months. The contribution of self-confidence for the success of entrepreneurial business is evident through some of the business ventures that have soared to great heights in their relevant industries. One such entrepreneur isJack Ma. After many failed attempts by Ma at starting up an e-commerce company, he was finally able to initiate Alibaba.com. This venture which was deemed to be unsuccessful by Silicon Valley experts, has become one of the world’s largest companies by Market Capitalization, as a result of Ma’s self-confidence in himself and his business.

Another such example, isSir Richard Branson. After dropping out of school at the age of 16, he decided to start a youth-culture magazine called Student, a few years after this he began a mail-order record company called ‘Virgin’, as an effort to fund this magazine. His confidence in himself lead to him becoming a prominent figure in the music industry as well the business world in general.

 “I wanted to be an editor or a journalist, I wasn’t really interested in being an entrepreneur, but I soon found I had to become an entrepreneur in order to keep my magazine going.” - Richard Branson

However, honing this trait to be a core trait in your life may not seem easy, at least in a glance.Entrepreneur.com looks at 6 Actions You Can Take Every Day to Build Your Self-Confidence, they are;

1.              Act the part

A confident individual always projects this through their body language, this could be through simple bodily gestures such as pushing back your shoulders, a confident handshake etc.

2.              Dress the part

To ensure that you feel confident in your surroundings it is vital for you to consider your industry and your style when selecting clothes to wear for work or business meetings.

3.              Speak assertively

Try to avoid using “ums” and “ahs” in your conversation, instead use a steady rhythmic tone when you speak.

4.              Think and act positively

It is important for you to avoid negative self-talk and to surround yourself with happy and positive thoughts which will boost your confidence.

5.              Take Action

In order to enliven your latent trait of self-confidence, it is important to act the part. For this you will have to challenge yourself by walking up to people at certain conferences and other networking events.

6.              Be prepared

Being informed about your industry, your subject matter, your goals and what drives you towards success will help you to project your confidence.

Expolanka Holdings has encouraged this trait among entrepreneurs through its “Dare to Do” spirit. This can be seen through the AREA award winning project Venture Engine carried out in collaboration with Blue Ocean Ventures and Indian Angel Network that provides budding entrepreneurs the opportunity to further build their self-confidence by presenting their innovation to market experts, along with different necessary funding, mentoring, and information to turn their start-ups to successful, self-sustaining business ventures.

09.03.2016 in Group Companies, Latest by copaceticweb 0

Galle Travel Fiesta: Classic Travel Steers Galle to a New Frontier

The city of Galle was recently treated to a first of its kind Travel Fiesta organised by Classic Travel. The fun-filled event was open to all-ages, where the mini-carnival had a variety of games, raffle draws, and many other entertaining events organised for those in and around Galle.


Classic Fiesta, which was held in Galle Municipal Pavilion Grounds, was organised to celebrate Classic Travel’s fourth successful year in Galle, while creating awareness on Classic Travel’s tour packages and auxiliary services offered. Classic Travel opened its Galle branch as part of its commitment to venture beyond its client’s expectations to offer total travel solutions at a time where there was a growing need for a localised outbound travel business in Galle. Since then, it has been providing its customers a total travel solutions by bringing all the services that are available in its Colombo branch to Galle, with the exception of the in-house photo studio and 24/7 business operations. With this unique offering Classic Travel’s Galle branch has been able to establish itself as a key player in the outbound travel industry in Galle.

Suresh Mendis, CEO, Classic Travel, commented on the fiesta; “It was a good day for Classic Travel Galle. We opened the Galle branch four years ago and we’ve seen business grow steadily over the years. It was a pleasure to see the high turnout and the interest we managed to generate. I believe all those who came to the fiesta enjoyed themselves. It was a lighthearted end to a successful year”.


The carnival was declared open by Sabry Bahaudeen, General Manager, Classic Travel, Shiham Imamudeen, COO/Director, Classic Travel and Saif Yusoof, Director. The event kept its promise of entertaining the masses from the start to finish, with various games and entertainment acts taking place. Rodeo bull simulator, mini golf, dart and balloon, puzzle, ring throw, mehendi and face paint where some of the most popular interactive segments at the fiesta.

As the masses flowed through the gates of the pavilion, the main attraction that caught the eye of passers-by was the inquiry booth of Classic Travel. What differentiated this inquiry booth from any other conventional stall was that it was a mock-up of a star cruise. The inquiry booth which was deemed as a must-see at the event, provided interested individuals with information on travel rates, while also carrying out other activities such as ticket processing, tour planning, and tips on procedures and instructions to remember when travelling. Another stall that was carried out by Classic Travel was the product presentation stall. This stall provided visitors with an insight into the different travel packages, products and services that was on offer.interactive segments at the fiesta.


“We were keen on spreading awareness about outbound travel in other areas of the country outside of Colombo. And the product presentation stall at the Carnival proved to be an ideal opportunity to spread this message,” commented Saif Yusoof, Director, Classic Travel. 

Amidst all of these entertaining acts, Classic Travel took further steps to show its appreciation to the residents of Galle, where it held a raffle draw to select three winners who received return air tickets to Bangkok and Chennai. The winners of the draw were K. M.Sasindu Sandeepa , Sammani Asinsa and W.L.P. Dilip Ruwan.

Classic Travel, founded in 1994, is an IATA accredited travel agent who has its main business operations based in Colombo. In its effort to cater to its widely dispersed customer base, it also operates in strategic locations such as, the World Trade Center in Colombo as well as, Ratnapura, Hambantota, and Galle. Apart from these, Classic Travel’s holiday packages and tours arm, Classic Vacations, is situated in Kollupitiya (Colpetty) providing customers with the opportunity to customise holiday packages to suit their travel needs.

Classic Travel has been able to establish itself as an industry leader through its innovative outlook on outbound travel industry. This innovative outlook has enabled it to become the only travel agent in Sri Lanka to carry out its operations 24 hours, 365 days of the year, where it provides around the clock services from obtaining tour package details and purchasing air tickets, to the preparation of necessary documentation for passports and visas with the help of its highly skilled employees and in-house photo studio.

“With the conclusion of this successful Travel Fiesta in Galle, we are hoping to identify an area in Sri Lanka with travel enthusiasts as Galle and organise a similar event to create awareness about our products and provide these potential clients with the opportunity to have easy access to outbound travel services to fulfill their travel needs.” concluded Suresh Mendis.

01.03.2016 in Entrepreneurship, Expolanka, Latest by copaceticweb 0

How work experience helps entrepreneurs.

With the popularization of Tech startups entrepreneurs are often synonymously referred to as innovators or disruptors, as these descriptive words take over the identity of entrepreneurs, the importance of previous work experience for entrepreneurs in developing skills and knowledge, primary or ancillary, is being downplayed.

 “I wanted to be an editor or a journalist, I wasn’t really interested in being an entrepreneur, but I soon found I had to become an entrepreneur in order to keep my magazine going.”

-  Sir Richard Branson

In a world where the phrase “Entrepreneurs are born not made” Jonah Peretti, Sir Richard Branson, Jan Koum, Jack Ma, Steve Jobs and many other entrepreneurs have proved to be an exception to this outdated statement. Even recent research has proven that the perception regarding this statement has shifted, where 37 of the 38 markets believed that entrepreneurship is something that can be taught, and that entrepreneurs can in fact be made. The respondents of the research further cited that business skills, management skills and “entrepreneurship in practice” training and education programs are essential for them to launch their own businesses.

How does one gain these skills? As the best way out is through, so are skills. Work experience has been an influential actor in moulding entrepreneurs, by honing entrepreneurs’ skills to helping them identify the area in which they should pursue their entrepreneurial activities.

“But, it was only by trying out as many different jobs as possible – from a fish and chip shops to working in a call centre – that it became apparent I was well-suited to being an entrepreneur.”

-          Nick Holzherr, Whisk.com

 Nick Holzherr is a firm believer of work experience and its ability to influence entrepreneurs in developing their skills. He claims that he’s past work experience has helped him to gain certain soft skills that he has used in his own business venture. For example, he has adopted certain aspects of the training programme at Deutsche Bank for the training of his employees. Apart from this, he states that he still uses the file-naming system that he learned from his time as an intern at the Bank at Whisk.com.

Another advantage of having prior work experience when endeavoring in entrepreneurial activities is that it helps an individual to identify their strengths and weaknesses, which helps them to understand the areas which they can thrive in and the areas they would need to make additional hires. This identification of strengths and weaknesses often lead to the realization of the area in which they would eventually start their business.

Additionally, once an individual has selected a business area,work experience in the said field will not only expose them to the method of operation, but it would also help to build contacts that would be useful once their business takes off. As a result, they would be able to understand if they truly have the will to go beyond their passion to pursue the venture in a professional and personal level.

However time is not an expendable commodity, how does an individual ensure that they will receive the essential work exposure? Entrepreneur.com had identified five business areas that budding entrepreneurs should consider working before starting their own venture, they are; Retail, Food, Sales, Customer Service, and Management. The reasoning behind these diverse areas of business is that it not only helps an individual to understand consumer buying behavior, but it also helps to understand the work style and leadership style that they will in due course integrate to their business.

Expolanka Holdings’ has often reiterated the importance of its covenant of “Building a great business with a dare to do spirit”; from its working culture to the different activities it has organized for budding entrepreneurs. The organization’s dare to do entrepreneurial spirit has been in constant motion from its founders to its employees. In an effort to further improve and exhibit the diverse skills of its employees Expolanka has organized various events like ‘Expo Sports’ Colours Night, and Expo Got Talent.

Expolanka has also organized many activities to improve the entrepreneurial learning in Sri Lanka, through sponsoring programmes such as Venture Engine, an AREA award winning project done in collaboration with Blue Ocean Ventures and Indian Angel Network that provides entrepreneurs with the necessary funding, mentoring, and information to turn their start-ups to successful, self-sustaining business ventures.