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Gen Y Speaks: Many quit their day jobs to be their own boss. I did the opposite

Since a young age, I’ve always had an entrepreneurial mindset and being at university with  other like-minded learners further encouraged me to set various business ideas into motion.

Kenzie Ang is a social media and community manager at Moomoo Singapore. He wrote about his experience transiting from a business he started to a corporate role.
Kenzie Ang is a social media and community manager at Moomoo Singapore. He wrote about his experience transiting from a business he started to a corporate role.
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Kenzie Ang

Since a young age, I’ve always had an entrepreneurial mindset and being at university with  other like-minded learners further encouraged me to set various business ideas into motion.

In 2020, while studying an international business course in university, two of my childhood friends and I decided to start our own business with our idea of selling plush sneakers that look like regular shoes and feel like slippers.

Excited by the possibility of running our own company, Plushbeast, we pooled the small amount of savings we had and grew our own retail brand through Shopify.

At the time, many people questioned the decision to start our own business at such a young age, but we had a game plan that would allow us to gain real-world experience and directly apply our academic knowledge.

We taught ourselves everything from operating our own online store to running our own Facebook ads and designing our own creative videos. 

We had to learn the hard way when it came to marketing our product. To grow the business, we needed the skills to succeed and had to teach ourselves through YouTube and other online courses. Thankfully, we managed to hit S$10,000 in sales in our first few months.

But there was a knowledge gap that had still not been filled, and I was hungry for new learning opportunities with experienced professionals.

I also wanted to be financially stable to be able to support my family. 

It became very clear that, despite a successful first few months, the fact is irregular income is part and parcel of entrepreneurship.

Family also comes first, and being able to support my family and myself with a more stable income was very tempting.

After eight months, we felt in our hearts that time was up. 

We had a mutual understanding from the very beginning that if it ever came to this, we would go our separate ways and support each other to prioritise and pursue our professional careers.


So, we decided to close shop.

It was emotionally difficult for me to leave the business that was built on blood, sweat and tears over many months. 

But I was in my prime — I had a business degree and was ready to learn more from corporate Singapore.

As a group, we put our emotions aside and had to think practically about our personal and professional goals.
If we could take the same courage, passion and vision to start a business, then each of us, individually, can do anything with this next phase of our careers.

One of my friends told me about an online brokerage firm who was looking for a social media and community manager.

Although going for this opportunity would mean a change to a nine-to-five career, I was excited to put my prior experience to further use and acquire new skills.

I liked the sound of the firm’s digital business model and its vision for financial literacy. With the support of my friends and family, I convinced myself that I should go for an interview.

I knew I had a lot to offer as I could relate to both sides of the business – as an entrepreneur with real-life business marketing experience, and a young adult who knows exactly how to engage with their key audiences.



Kenzie Ang, seated a meeting with his team at Moomoo, wrote that he and his former business associates had to set their emotions aside and think practically before deciding to make the switch to becoming a corporate employee.

Nevertheless, working as an employee rather than as a business leader required quite a shift in mindset.
When running our own business, we were answerable only to each other and we did not have a boss among us. 

But at my new corporate job in the online brokerage firm, I had to constantly remind myself where I fit within the team, and I was not at all familiar with the work processes or the corporate environment.

I found adapting to the office schedule quite challenging at first. The need to stick to working hours is vastly different from the freedom to choose my hours of work I previously enjoyed.

On a personal level after having worked with some of my best mates in my previous job, getting acquainted with my new colleagues was another challenge I had to overcome due to my introverted nature.

We were also in the midst of the pandemic when I joined the company. This meant that I was limited to virtual interactions with colleagues and I could not simply approach people with my many queries.

Thankfully, transitioning into that mindset was inevitable but not particularly tough because of my previous experiences doing internships at other companies. 

I was also very blessed to have had a manager that was willing to take me under her wing and guide me on the right path.

Over time, I’ve come to realise that no matter whether one chooses to be self-employed or work under a boss, we all desire to be trusted and understood, and to feel empowered to take action and make decisions.

After all, everyone shares the same goal in getting the work done. 


Kenzie Ang also said that getting acquainted with his new colleagues was another challenge due to his introverted nature.

There were also several perks to having had experience running a company.

Because of my previous career, I’m often given a seat at the "grown-ups" table so that I can share my ideas directly with the executive team. 

As an employee, it is fulfilling to see these ideas being implemented and yield business results for the company, which validates my past experience.

One example of this includes creating and building the brand’s Telegram channel from the ground up and introducing community engagement initiatives while peppering in my own flavour of content for the younger audiences, using memes to attract eyeballs.

Looking back, I enjoyed the switch to a corporate role not just due to the career stability but mostly the learning opportunities.

Career stability can be a good thing to have, but at the end of the day, everyone has different priorities when it comes to their careers.

For me, social media and community engagement in the digital financial services sector is an exciting field and I’m looking forward to the learning opportunities that come.

Some may not agree with the idea of spending time and money starting a business, and having to call it a day eight months on. 

But I have gained much from this, and in fact, I wish my friends and I started at a younger age. 

I know I wouldn’t be where I am today without the experience and maturity I gained from my previous business.

To me, taking a riskier route into entrepreneurship does not necessarily lead to a bigger pot of gold.

But it could open your eyes to invaluable lessons along the way, which was the case for me, and I don’t regret any of it at all.



Kenzie Ang is the social media and community manager at Moomoo Singapore, an online brokerage firm

Related topics

Gen Y Speaks motivation entrepreneurship corporate culture

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