Who is Venchito Tampon?
Venchito is the co-founder and marketing director of Sharprocket—an SEO company that only offers link building services and content marketing.
When he’s not running the business, Venchito goes out to speak in schools, non-profit organizations, and different companies. He also conducts trainings that revolve around our own advocacies.
The trainings that we provide are for B2B and B2C companies. One of his more popular ones involves Jayson Lo’s Younique workshop—in which he is a certified facilitator for.
How did you start a business?
Venchito thinks that there’s no such thing as an accident. There is always a purpose and a reason behind an idea. He started by simply reaching out to experts in the SEO industry. There, he met Joseph Cruz, the current head of operations of Sharprocket. At only 17 years old, Venchito was already working as a content writer.
2 years later, he was hired by Jason Cooper, one of the best SEO professionals in the world. Jason was the one who mentored and taught Venchito about all the ropes when it comes to link building. He even got the courage to start up his own blog, which later on in his career, he redirected to Sharprocket’s website.
That old website/blog built up a great audience and garnered Venchito with several inquiries and business opportunities. He saw the potential in it and thus, he went for it.
Venchito and Joseph started with just three to seven clients. Eventually, more clients came, and they needed even more team members.
What were the challenges and difficulties that you had to face during the start of your business?
The first challenge that Venchito had to face was the whole experience itself. He didn’t have any extensive corporate experience before. He had to learn the systems and processes as they go.
He had to go to more seminars and seek mentoring just to keep up.
A particularly difficult part was trying to build connections with the very few that you have. There’s a big barrier when Venchito tried to sell his products and services to high-end managers and executives just because he was young at the time.
Often his first clients would usually ask how young Venchito was and from there have a hard time believing in his services.
What he lacked in experience, he made up with technical knowledge. Venchito knew his services inside out and used that to his advantage when getting people to accept his services.
Proving that what he had was effective was hard at the start. But over time, Venchito was able to accumulate testimonials and create case studies from his previous clients. With these resources backing up his pitches, he was able to close more and more deals.
When did you hire your first team member?
Further down the line, Venchito had to hire his first-ever team members apart from Joseph. They started out in a semi-old residential apartment as their office. He was the first and last person to come, as well as the person who cleans everything up.
His hiring wasn’t that simple, however. The two new hires that he had were trained very well in order to keep up and ensure the quality of work.
For Venchito, this is something that many startups lack. They hire as many as they can without considering the overhead cost as well as thinking that more manpower will automatically result in better productivity and output.
At the start, they didn’t have any kind of onboarding process. Venchito just hired people and immediately trained them. 2 years later, they hired an HR consultant to streamline their hiring processes and company regulations. They started with the onboarding and have continued to do so ever since.
This also led to the creation of a company handbook—which put into writing the mission and vision, core values, and the long-term goal of the company itself.
How many people do you have working with you right now?
Currently, we have 13 team members. Three of which work remotely. We have a small team because we want to maximize the capacity of our current team.
The HR consultant is still working for us, though instead of them, we let the HR assistant do all of the recruitment.
The remote team members are different as they come from Davao and Cebu. They are exempted from our training processes because we’re already sure that they have the skills that we need.
Is your team composed primarily of Millennials? How is it, working with Millennials?
As a startup company, you have to offer something that will somehow make them stay.
Venchito mentioned a study by Gallup which stated that the Millennial generation was not just looking for job satisfaction. They also emphasized finding growth and development. That is where we, as a startup company, focuses on.
I think that growth happens when you’re faced with challenges. It happens when you’re kicked out of your comfort zone and forced to spread your wings and fly. Unfortunately, a lot of millennials will quit as soon as you do this to them.
What are your thoughts on Millennials that don’t like coming out of their comfort zone?
Most millennials have a low adversity quotient. This deals with how people cope up with the challenges and bounce back from failure. These people tend to quit when they are given bigger challenges than what they signed up for.
These people don’t get to learn the lessons that they can learn if they took these challenges head-on.
As a leader of a Millennial team, you have to take the initiative of bringing them growth opportunities. As Venchito said, the leader has the responsibility to find opportunities for your whole team.
Has there ever been a time when a team member that you challenged told you that it was just not his/her passion to do so?
Passion is a very common word among Millennials.
In one of our team outings, we had an activity that led to learning that most of our team members had completely different fields from digital marketing. The only reason why they took this job was because they needed to provide for their families.
This is the challenge of leaders of Millennials—that is to match the purpose of these team members.
Help them understand that passion can only be confirmed after suffering. If they are suffering because of something that they did, but still want to do it again, then they’ll know that they’re passionate about it.
What’s your advice to people who are not passionate about what they’re doing?
This question is hard to answer as it depends a lot on the person involved.
For example, Venchito had one team member that wanted to resign because they wanted to start their own business.
One of the pieces of advice that he gave them was that they should get as much corporate experience as they can. Aside from that, they should also have the skills in line with the business.
Venchito’s general advice would be to not just look for passion and instead look for skills. No matter how much you love your work or your business, if you don’t have any skills to back it up, then you won’t have any value to the marketplace.
At the end of the day, you’ll be paid not because of your passion but rather because of the skills that you have. Have the willingness to stay and learn as much as you can before you delve out into the industry alone.
Can you share some of your business principles?
For Venchito, work ethics is very important. How you behave in the marketplace reflects how you are as a Christian and a businessman.
Regardless of your relationship with your boss, you need to be excellent in what you do.
Secondly, you need to practice ethics in your business as well. You should not compromise your faith just for profit. If you just want the money itself, that is a problem.
What’s your workday like?
Venchito’s workday varies depending on the circumstances of the day. Recently, it’s been a lot towards training and teambuilding activities.
He does have his morning routines. He starts with quiet time for the Lord. Then exercise on a stationary bike. He also finds time to write in his planner and organize what he should do for the day.
His day is essentially the amalgamation of what he writes about his planner. Whatever his top three priorities he has for the day; he will do his best to achieve.
As the head of sales and marketing, Venchito writes content for Sharprocket, meeting with potential clients, and reviewing the brand model of the company.