The other day, I went to this Chinese restaurant to have dinner. My partner asked me, “The food here is good – but too bad – Chinese business owners always like to cut cost and hire foreigners. It is the Bangladeshi who is the chef in the kitchen, soon who will be inheriting this industry?”

What we were having the other night – some simple noodles

Actually, looking at it from another point of view, my partner grasped it wrongly. Cutting cost undeniably is a huge factor why business owners (F&B especially) likes to hire foreigners, but apart from that, there is another concern. If your chef suddenly opens up a restaurant or a hawker stall across the street – then you are in deep trouble!

You see, this is the main concern. They are afraid if they transfer the skill to their employee, the employee will take their skill away and open their own business. If that is the concern, then the problem is with management who doesn’t know how to manage talent.

Let me share with you one of the ways in which you can use to have the talent working hard for you – instead of against you. One of the most common ways is through property.

I bet most F&B owners are worried that if their staff know their secret ingredients, they will just open a hawker stall and compete with your business!

Say for example your manager or chef is very good at their job. Naturally, they will start to think, “What’s next for me? How do I grow?” You can open a branch at another location, and get them to manage the branch instead.

The key is here: Strike a deal with your employee. Within 3 -5 years, provided with good performance, he or she will have a share (say 20%) of the business or property. Meaning to say, with good performance, he will own 20% of the shop.

This shop may have a value of RM1mil or RM2mil, in 5 years time, it will become RM3mil. If the employee has 20% stake in this business, it means that he will get a big fat bonus at the end of it all. Then he won’t leave. He will think: “If I work here, or if I work for other shops outside, I make the same money. But at least I have a stake at the shop here, this place is mine.”

A shop located at city centre has huge upside potential and can possibly double up within the next 3-5 years.

From an employee standpoint, he knows if he goes out and tries to start a business from scratch, he will need to incur risk. Might as well he do it for you considering that you can back him up in case the business fail. He can leverage on your expertise and financial support too.

Most importantly, in his mind, starting a new business adventure or working for you, the reward will be the same. So might as well he works for you with limited risk.

When I mention this plan, many will oppose me and say, “Hey! I already know that!” But who said you need to be a rocket scientist to be a good business person? Most of the time, it is the basic plan that works the most miracle.

So there you have it – how investing in property is actually also a very good way to make your business grow.

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