GLOBE BUSINESS AMBASSADOR AND ENTREPRENEUR REX PUENTESPINA has his priorities straight. He leads a busy life as head of their very successful family business, Puentespina Orchids and Tropical Plants, Inc. (POTPI), and he constantly looks forward to the moments outside of his work, when he is able to spend time with his family and pursue his hobbies and advocacies.
Rex does business in a way that allows him to maintain what he calls “Work-Life Balance”. He doesn’t allow himself to become so absorbed in work that he forgets to give care and attention to his family and his personal pursuits.
According to Rex, achieving such a balance is not always easy to do, since his business can be hectic and stressful. “I go to the office in the morning and visit our branches and key customers in the afternoon. In short, I am out on field most of the day,” he says.
Besides the day-to-day operations of POTPI, Rex has to deal with the problems that go with the business, like the delayed arrival of flights; crop quality problems, as well as delayed or advanced harvest.
In order to cope with his work-related stress, Rex says that he makes it a point to spend time with his family at the end of the day. “Going home to my family relieves me of my stress. I also unwind by playing tennis or by going sailing every weekend.”
These days, however, Rex says that he has new tools for minimizing stress and for setting aside time with family and hobbies—all these tools are based on modern telecommunications technology. He shares how modern telecommunications is helping his business, his family life and even his hobbies and other personal passions.
Flowers go digital
What is now Puentespina Orchids & Tropical Plants, Inc. (POTPI) started as an orchid-growing hobby of Rex’s mother, Charita P. Puentespina way back in 1977. Today, it is one of the biggest producers of cut flowers in the Philippines, supplying its products to major cities nationwide.
Like many other successful businesses, Rex is taking advantage of the Internet to make innovations in POTPI operations. “By innovating, we are able to better serve our existing customers and at the same time, expand our market base,” he said.
For example, POTPI now has a digital link with customers in remote areas thru its recently launched website, www.orchid.ph. The website serves as the online presence of Puentespina Orchids and generates more business for the company.
“The website allows us to present products and services offered by Puentespina Orchids and Tropical Plants, Inc., and Waling Flowers from Davao to a much wider market than ever before. It emboldened us to dream bigger for the industry that we are impassioned to serve.
“We look at this information superhighway as a channel through which we can accommodate more cartloads of fresh, quality products from the outskirts of our islands, and deliver with speed and efficiency, to our customers in the metropolitan areas,” said Rex.
The Internet adds to the advantages that POTPI has over the competition. Puentespina Orchids already has a loyal customer base that appreciates the service and quality offered to them by the company.
“Puentespina Orchids always makes sure that product quality is maintained. We see to it the flowers are fresh and will last so customers can enjoy them longer. Secondly, we give excellent customer service. We ensure orders are served and delivered on time. If goods are not available, we inform our customers ahead of time and give them options. This way they can adjust their requirements accordingly,” Rex explains.
He adds that POTPI also has a special pricing scheme that is friendly to its regular customers.
Another very important service that POTPI provides is the great ease and convenience that customers experience when ordering flowers. This is also where the digital component of Rex’s business operations becomes crucial.
“We have three branches. There’s the Manila Seedling Bank Compound in Quezon City; there’s also our branch in No. 910 Colbella Arcade in Makati; and the one in Dos Castillas Street in Dangwa, Sampaloc to serve our customers in Manila.
Our Davao City Office handles orders from the Visayas and Mindanao regions. Then there’s our website www.orchid.ph which is updated regularly for easy access & reference to products being sold. We also accept orders placed online,” says Rex.
Besides the Internet service, Rex also uses products and services from Globe Business to make his business operations simpler and more efficient at less cost. He currently uses the Blackberry email service, Business Plus package and TextConnect service of Globe Business in his daily operations.
“The instant access to email accounts through the Globe Business Blackberry email service gives me complete mobility. I am able to stay on top of my emails while I’m out on field. I don’t have to go back to the office just to check emails on my computer. More time on field equals more quality time with customers, and that is very important to our business,” he says.
Rex adds that the Business Plus package lets him communicate with his personnel and clients instantly and reliably at lower cost.
“Globe Business created special postpaid plans for us that were tailored according to our needs. We now communicate with our personnel, customers and suppliers thru unlimited texting and calls at an affordable price. Plus, we even get free phones! Definitely no more worries on exceeding our communication budget,” Rex explained.
For instant mass communication with a large number of customers, Rex uses the TxtConnect service by Globe Business.
“Globe Business set us up with TxtConnect, a web-based program that sends our SMS blasts to customers.
It is now easy to broadcast relevant information to our customer base such as price changes, status of shipments, promos, stock availability, invites and even send birthday greetings with just one click. I am especially happy that am able to save as much as 50% using this service,” says Rex.
Family and hobbies
All the modern telecommunications tools that Rex uses are helping his business in important ways. Since he started using the telecoms products and services of Globe Business, he has seen Puentespina Orchids benefit from improved efficiency, increased productivity and bigger savings.
But more importantly for Rex, these same telecommunications tools allow him to have more quality time with his family and loved ones. He also has more time to engage in his hobbies and advocacies.
One of Rex’s hobbies is competitive sailing and he has won prizes in national competitions for Hobie 16 one-design catamaran racing.
Currently, he is one of the directors of PHINSAF (Philippine Inter-island Sailing Foundation Inc). PHINSAF is a non-stock, non-profit foundation run by Philippine-based sailors for all sailors. It provides all sailors with a venue to get into the country's burgeoning sailing scene. It also regularly organizes regattas during the Sept-April sailing season and is the driving force behind the Philippine Hobie Challenge, Asia's most extreme sailing event. The Philippine Hobie Challenge is a 500km week long regatta that takes 20 Hobie cat teams through some of the country's most beautiful sailing destinations.
Helping quality of life
Rex adds that using modern telecommunications has also increased his quality of life.
“It is exhilarating to run a family-owned business. It is also equally challenging to keep yourself from neglecting the other important aspects of your life. As they say, fulfilment isn’t just about money – it’s about achieving and maintaining work-life balance. And most importantly, celebrating every available moment with my family,” he says.
Globe Business is the corporate arm of Globe Telecom, the leading telecommunications company in the Philippines. Globe Business provides wireless and wireline solutions for a diverse set of industries, businesses, and commercial enterprises. It assures SMEs of affordable, reliable, and dependable services for all communication needs, both wireless and wireline solutions, to generate the highest possible profit at the lowest possible cost. For more information, call +632 730-1288 or log on to http://www.globe.com.ph/business to find out more.