Food, life, and fun in my "kampung,"(village), KL (Kuala Lumpur). Did I mention "food?"


By Allan Yap & Nigel A. Skelchy

Do you feel that people in Malaysia tend to fear competition?

I used to work with this gentleman in the US and he taught me a very useful idea of seeing competition. He used to say that "competition should focus you. You shouldn't be afraid of it. It's a fact of life. It's only what you choose to do that sets you apart."

We live in an open society (well sort of). And competition of any sort in business especially is a fact of life. I think people are always quite surprised that we make friends with other people who are in our industry.

And why not?

I have friends who come to me to buy cakes. And they also buy cakes from other bakers. And why not? I'm glad they do. There's some stuff we do very well and there's some stuff that other bakers do very well.

Besides, we've found that business comes from the most unlikely of sources. We've had business passed on to us from our so called "competitors." And sometimes we pass business on to them.

But most importantly of all is that we enjoy the passion that they bring to the industry. The love for what they do. That passion is infectious. It makes us want to be better people and better in what we do.


Wait till you come to med school and see wild woolly competition :)

"You shouldn't be afraid of it. It's a fact of life. It's only what you choose to do that sets you apart."

'It' means competition here, of course, but I suppose one can replace it with a variety of daily fears that we have to face, and should, really.

And they do the say that the stiffest competition comes from the inside, and that is one rival most of us dread even to acknowledge, the face staring back at us in the mirror every morning, asking us, "Have you done your best?"

"Are you living your life to the fullest?"

And may we all have the courage to answer that, and the will to improve ourselves regardless of the answer. :)

P.S. As for the direct meaning of your post, it works for my current company too... we have many competitors but only one direct competitor with whom we foster a partnership and improve our industry together, cos it's a small world out there, folks! ;)

i like the subtlety..well said..and carries across to the big 4 as well..

haha my last few studying assignments i was working indirectly with the competitors!

Paul; hahaha :-)

LFB; Amen! To Both

Joe; there you go. And what subtlety are you talking about? ;-)

well said..i guess diff ppl handle competition differently..sad when it gets ugly.

You should see how insanely competitive some of the girls can be in beauty pageants... *shudders*

Amazing how I got out alive...'cept for a few dents here and there!! =P

Nomad; no worries babe. Some people are always apt to lose sight of the forest for the trees. Pitiable really but there we go.

Bangsar Babe; I've heard. Can't say I've been in any beauty contests myself but yaaaaa....

agree! takes a lion heart to face competition face on! here's 2JHP the lion hearted!

Oh this is my first time penning down some words on your blog, thank you so miuch.

This is so well said. Competition is such a health thing, if not bakers like us, we would not have work harder and move forward, further, and even to a level of unknown and uncertainty.

Big Boys Oven had never fear of competition, in turn we took the challenges and reinvent ourself. (ha! got to say it was loads of hard work and effort)

The only thing what we can't understand is, the doing of some people (related or not related) who fired up things and sadly may in turn hurt other innocent people or even the bakers themself.

Direct competition is always good but when comes to hurting other people business by putting false comments, then it is not a healthy thing at all.

Great to hear of your honest opinion on this matter so does with LFB. If without competition we would not had move forward in improving oneself.

Don't waste your time on jealousy. Sometimes you're ahead, sometimes you're behind. The race is
long, and in the end, it's only with yourself.
~Baz Lurhman - Everybody is free to wear sunscreen~

*Hugs bro*

BBO; thanks for comment. Very well said :-) As for 'false' comments, I've learnt to live with them. Everyone has their point of view. And everyone's truth is different.I can only control what I can do personally. My late Mum always said to try and walk a mile in someone else's shoes before saying anything about them. And if you have nothing good to say, try not to say anything. (Don't always succeed though hahahaha) Furthermore, we can only do what we can do and frankly, for me to worry about what people's motives are regarding what it is they choose to do...or not to do...is not my place. After all, I only have to answer to one person, and that's the Almighty. As long as I do what I do out of love and compassion, I can't (hopefully) go very far wrong! ;-)

Unka, love that quote.

Cumi&ciki; aiyo...just saying what I think laaaa...fearing competition or what anyone else says about you or trying to speculate about other people's motives is futile. It's like trying to stop water from flowing downriver. It wears me out and eventually it would make me look silly. I've got a rep baby, especially with you as my cuz. I certainly don't want to look silly, especially when I've got such gorgeous people on my arm! ;-)

Unka Leong, Great quote but please reflect it to yourself, you know better!

I was once told by a very wise friend that "Fear is the one thing that shuts off our mind and buries our passion; More often than not, we let fear shout louder than our potential."

Hey-O, Nigel-O!

Just wanna drop a quick note that your post have inspired one from me... Hope you don't mind me lifting off a quote though (I linked it right back to this post so my readers can read something that makes more sense than my rambles, haha).

Odd, isn't it, how the world works? My mind was percolating on some issues anyway, and your post was the catalyst that enabled me to express them all to my satisfaction.


Relief-nye. Like getting a stubborn strand of dark leafy green vege out from stuck between the teeth lah. :P

Thanks again!

Competition is never a threat but an opportunity in disguise. But then of course those with insecurities will never see thru the disguise. Nor they will ever see thru themselves in reflection.

LFB, didn't set out to inspire anyone with this note. Just dashed it off. But I am truly awed that it did. Thank you for lifting the quote and thanks for linking back.

lecoupletoy; well said babes. There are so many in Malaysia like that. It never ceases to amaze me. The other day, I was at a photographic exhibition at the launch of a wedding photographer's new studio, and he was telling me about how there was this other photographer who has a sign outside his door in mandarin which translates to "don't come in unless you're serious about using us for photography. If you're another photographer, don't come in." I was stunned to say the least.

"Unka Leong, Great quote but please reflect it to yourself, you know better!"

BBO; Thanks again for visiting. Wow. Twice in ONE post. Am honoured. Truly.

Not quite certain what you mean by the statement above. I have heard many rumours and speculation about things that have been going on.

However, this brings up an issue which I've been meaning to address for some time. Since this is my blog,(and this is addressed to EVERYONE who visits) I would appreciate it if all visitors would direct all comments through me. If you wish to answer something that other people have said, either speak to them directly on THEIR blogs or at least acknowledge the host. I do visit other people's blogs frequently and I hope I give everyone the same courtesy when I visit their "homes" on the internet.

Here's some netiquette that I would appreciate visitors to stick by;

1. Not replying to other people without acknowledging the 'host.' Treat this like someone's 'home.' Come in, by all means, get comfy, and leave CONSTRUCTIVE comments or fun ones (preferably) but if you disagree, would enjoy a CIVILISED discussion. Disagreeing with someone doesn't mean we cannot be friends nor does it mean I'll hate you for life! hahahahaha In life cannot be that 'siew hei' hor?
2. If you do have something to say directly to the other person, I would appreciate it if you would take it up directly with them and not do it on my blog through the comments. :-)

This goes for anyone who visits!

Thanks much all. Much appreciated.

May I please be considered competition as well? Hehe but I love you both to pieces! - just want to be loved back :(

totally understand what you mean ...healthy competing is a drive to make things improve...btw...nice work u have over here ;-)

Su; awwwww :-) I think you do fantastic work. ;-) Love what you do & Love you too! :-) Enrique doing alright? ;-)

Breadpitt; thanks for stopping by. Hope to meet you one day :-) And thanks for the compliment

he's a champion! It's ridiculous! haha

ahhh, this was THE post that I missed out. didn´t know so much was happening here and was kinda blur when hearing them in KL. well, all i can say is, if there´s no truth, the wind won´t blow lohhhh ... and when it does, just take it like a man lah. well done on the article.

First time posting comments on your blog. Before that, I've got to say... I am the new fan of your creations, and will probably drop by this weekend at your new outlet in Jaya One...

Anyway, my view on competitions is easy. Without them, I don't think that there is a purpose in doing business at all. Healthy ones always make me strive to do better and to improve myself along the way.

My motto is easy "Keep your friends close, keep your competitors closer".

thule aka leo ;-) no need soooo separated la allll close friends, competitors...its just a word. We need to be the best we can be and use our God given talents to the max. that's all. Competitors are reflective of what you can do better. Know thyself and you'll be fine ;)

this is so true. competition will only make you stronger.

congrats to the opening of a slice of heaven too! got myself some cakes there yterday! :)

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