UPH Career Talks: Insights on Transforming Passion into a Business by David Soong!

Do you aspire to become entrepreneurs and run your own business? The promise of substantial income potentials, the freedom to manage your own schedule, and the opportunity for self-fulfillment are some reasons why many, especially the younger generation, are drawn to entrepreneurship. Furthermore, if your business aligns with your passion, it becomes more enjoyable and easier to pursue. However, the question remains, how can we recognize our passion and turn it into a sustainable source of income? 

To address this question, the Career Center and Corporate Relations (CCCR) at the University of Pelita Harapan (UPH) invited David Soong, a successful entrepreneur behind Axioo Photography, Sweet Escape, and Boga Group, to share tips with UPH students on starting a business based on their passions. The seminar, themed ‘Turn Your Passion into a Worldwide Business,’ held on September 5, 2023, at UPH Lippo Village Campus, was attended by over 300 UPH students from Lippo Village, Medan, and Surabaya campuses, both in-person and online. 


Make your first step! 

Having the desire to develop a business is not enough to get started; it takes courage to take the first step. Therefore, you need to step out of your comfort zone to think more critically. You will be “forced” to innovate, think uniquely, and create things that are more interesting and different. 

“When starting Axioo, I didn’t have much capital. I had only two cameras and two lenses. However, the courage to delve into the field of photography and step out of my comfort zone as an office worker was key. On weekends, I use time to take photography jobs, which was my hobby. Having two different jobs, one of which was a paid hobby, was very satisfying for me. Over time, I felt the need to bring innovation to my business and attract more customers. Eventually, we decided to expand our business by providing photography services outside Jakarta, such as Bogor, Pulau Seribu, Bali, Yogyakarta, and other unique locations. From there, our business expanded beyond the city, and we began to receive many requests for photo sessions, further developing the business through Sweet Escape,” explained David. 

Find solutions to overcome countless obstacles 

In running a business, challenges are inevitable, and the ability to find solutions is key to success. This is what David experienced when the Covid-19 pandemic struck. He and his team explored various ways to keep their businesses running. 

“Being brave enough to start a business means being prepared to face countless challenges. One of the biggest challenges Axioo and Sweet Escape faced was during the pandemic. As businesses offering photography services for weddings and holidays, we couldn’t do much when lockdowns occurred. All photography session reservations were cancelled immediately. At that time, we were all confused, and no one had prepared me to find a solution to such a sudden situation. We had to shift our business model from Business to Customer (B2C) to Business to Business (B2B). We offered food photography services for restaurants, doctor and hospital photography services, and various other creative solutions to ensure content remained available,” said David. 

Believe in starting small and stay consistent 

No business achieves instant success; everything starts with small steps. Therefore, self-confidence and consistency in business are crucial. David emphasized that a high level of commitment will help you overcome many obstacles and motivate you to pursue your dreams. 

“Believe in starting small, start with what you have, give it your all, and invest your time and effort. I believe that success requires effort commensurate with the results. I hope that today’s young generation aspiring to start a business doesn’t feel inferior or afraid. Try to identify exciting problems to solve. With small steps, we can start and achieve our dreams. Everything is possible; it just takes time,” David conveyed his message. 

So, are you ready to start your business? We hope the inspirational tips from David Soong will motivate you to keep moving forward and dare to dream. However, to become an outstanding individual, you need to prepare yourself with the best education and UPH is the right place for you! With a comprehensive curriculum, competent lecturers, and various impactful leadership programs, UPH is the right place to prepare you to become a future leader with positive impact. What are you waiting for? Join UPH now! For more information, contact the Student Consultant at 0811-1709-901 or register here. 


Career Center & Corporate Relations (CCCR) at UPH 

CCCR UPH is established to meet students’ needs in preparing themselves for the world of careers. CCCR consistently establishes partnerships with companies and institutions to provide expansive career opportunities for UPH students.