Jonathan Chak has built 5 startups since he started his entrepreneurial career in the early 2000s. Now, he's a passionate startup coach and consultant, offering mentoring for early-stage startup founders, as well as growth hacking and business development consulting for technology startups and scaleups.
We sat down with Jonathan to get his tips for transitioning to working and learning remotely and find out how he stays focused while working in the fast-paced innovation sector.
Hey Jonathan, how did you get started in the world of entrepreneurship?
I think it all started with the crave of "change". My parents were professionals who both worked a 9-5 and I didn't want to end up like them!
What is your best piece of advice for young people interested in starting their own venture?
Unlearn all of the concepts you have picked up since you were born.
Jonathan Chak Startup founder and mentor
You only need work/life balance when you work in a job that you hate.
What techniques or strategies do you use to stay on track and motivated?
- Understand yourself more and more on a daily basis, try to achieve inner balance.
- Invest in your soul mate (usually your spouse).
- You only need work/life balance when you work in a job that you hate. Forget about work/life balance, there is only life.
What wicked problem should be our community’s biggest priority and how can we help solve it together?
The education system has not evolved with the advancement of humanity. There's no easy solution as most of the establishment cannot be disrupted in one go (and we should not do that anyway). Nudging our way through and targeting one niche market at a time will eventually create impact.
What is key to a successful transition to online learning and working remotely?
The understanding of how people learn nowadays. The traditional Teacher -> Student methodology doesn't work anymore. People like to learn things on demand, as needed. Look at YouTube – when you want to learn something, you type in the keywords, and watch relevant videos as you need.
It’s the same with working remotely; if you have the right attitude towards life, it doesn't really matter where you do work. You just need to practise inner balance.
And finally, how are you feeling about the current crisis and what advice would you give young people in the face of this global challenge?
It's the best time to rethink the meaning of your life. Broaden your horizons and network with people outside of your geographic and socio-economic groups. The world is flatter than ever; I use Zoom to talk to my friends in Sydney and my friends in Europe, there is longer any geographic barrier.
Practise compassion, engage with others and try to understand what true problems they are facing in life.