Prompt I intend to major in Economics/Business while in college. I have had several important experiences in my life that have convinced me that I want to be involved in the business world. My father has a business in South Korea that imports toys and anatomical models from China and the United States. He distributes these items to about 100 stores all over South Korea. When I was in middle school, my father took me on a business trip to Hong Kong. He was going to attend a worldwide toy convention to check out new products for his business.
This was an extraordinary opportunity but I was afraid because I am a naturally shy person and I was not confident in my ability to speak English. When we arrived in Hong Kong, I knew that this was the type of place I wanted to work. The city was very busy and everyone seemed to be a businessperson of some type. I stayed close by my father’s side the whole time so I could watch him work at the convention.
I was amazed at how well he could speak English and how he always presented himself with honesty and integrity to his associates. It was at this point that I knew I wanted to be a businessperson. I wanted to understand economics and work in a business that was challenging and fast paced. In my culture, some sons are pressured to enter the same profession as their father. I feel that this is so wrong because it threatens a person’s healthy development of their individuality.
I left that fabulous convention in Hong Kong inspired by observing my father’s work. I realized I wanted to be a businessperson like my father not because he pressured me, but because he was inspiring. After I graduated from high school, I was given the opportunity to work for over a year in my father’s business to learn management techniques and the essential daily tasks of operating a business. In many ways I was like an intern, but with more responsibilities and higher expectations because I was the owner’s son.
One of my greatest accomplishments during this time was the creation of a web site for the company. I convinced my father that we needed to have a presence on the web because some companies were experiencing almost exponential growth as a result of their web based operations. He put me in charge of the project but I did not have the technical skill to create the web site. I learned how to delegate responsibility by working side by side with individuals that had the proper expertise to complete this complicated task. Following this experience, I completed my mandatory two years of national service in the South Korean military.
This experience taught me more about responsibility and how to handle myself in stressful situations. All of these experiences have shown me how to be a more assertive individual when operating in the complex and exciting world of business. Prompt #2 I am a very shy person by nature. This is a trait that I am not proud of but it something that becomes apparent to anyone I meet.
But being shy and being in business is not a good combination because a businessperson must at times be aggressive and be willing to take risks. One of the greatest accomplishments I have in my life so far has been overcoming my natural shyness and inhibitions so that I have been able to accomplish lofty goals I have set for myself. I must thank my parents most for helping me to overcome my shyness. My mother is a very observant woman and she recognized that if I continued to be so shy, I might appear to be a person that only cared about me.
She spent a lot of time teaching me how to look for ways to help other people. She would take me to hospitals and to care centers so that I could learn how to take care of other people that had disabilities and could not care for themselves. I must admit that I was uncomfortable with helping at first but after a while, I could see that these people depended on me and I stopped being shy.
I learned that when people are in need, you do not need to worry about what they think of you. You just need to help them. My father helped me to overcome my shyness by taking me on trips to the mountains almost every week. When I was younger, he would send me away to camps where I would not know anyone and I would be forced to meet new people and engage in challenging activities.
I would learn how to rock climb and raft on rivers. I was often scared and lonely because he did not come with me but I realize now that he was teaching me how to take care of myself. As I grew older, my father shared personal stories with me about his life and business successes and failures. He told me that he grew so good at speaking English because he was not afraid to make American friends. He also taught me about failures he had in business and how to learn from mistakes.
These talks gave me confidence to take risks because I could see that failure wasn’t something to be afraid of but were in fact a way of learning. These lessons I learned from my parents help me to be successful in many ways. I started to become more outgoing with classmates I did not know. As a result, I was elected as president of my class and chosen as the head of the school newspaper.
Since 2008 I have been enrolled in Santa Monica College where I have a 4.0 GPA and am a member of the Alpha Gamma Sigma state Honor Society. I have made friends from all over the world and am confident in my abilities to achieve my goals. I am a happier person today because of these lessons I have learned from my parents and my own experience.