What I Learned From Project Mirastars – Part I


Mirastars project has finally reached its target and it’s now completed! It’s been an exceptionally rewarding journey for personal growth and I got to meet so many exemplary people along the way! Thank you for following Mirastars from the beginning till now, the interview project is concluded but Mirastars 2.0 is coming 😎 Stay tuned! Meanwhile, let me first share with you important lessons I have learned through this project.

1) Finish What We Started

My original target is to interview 52 entrepreneurs, I have met more than that in a short span of 3 months, and published stories for 51 of them by August. I didn’t know what would happen when I started this project (ignorance is bliss), but I know I must finish it. Did I announce to everyone about my project? Oh no I did. 😅 There is no turning back except to finish it! There is hardly anything more fulfilling than finish what we started, that is how I feel when I concluded the project 🙂

2) It Is Not About What We Know, It Is About What Are We Willing To Learn

I knew nothing about running business at the start (that’s why I started this project), but running this project was like running an initiative in a way. From website design, marketing, copy-writing, branding to business development (meeting entrepreneurs / organizations) and everything else, the learning curve was steep! Just branding itself was already an art to learn – what is Mirastars core message to share? How to be consistent in everything to demonstrate the brand values? Looking back at day one, I had come very far from knowing nothing to be able to tell someone everything about entrepreneurship (although not at expert level, but definitely more than just basic knowledge and theories). Of course, still a lot more to learn and I’m eager to learn more!

3) Outside Of Corporate, The World Is Huge And More Complex

Within a company, the number of people / departments / teams that we deal with are limited, and everyone follows similar company culture and values. Hence the size of problems are usually limited, because people follow similar protocols to resolve issues. Maybe you are thinking that “I meet client all the time and they are different”. But then again, they are of similar type of clients most of the time. Things are more predictable and simpler.

While I was interviewing entrepreneurs, everyday I met different people, there were no fixed meeting room or protocols to follow. I had to improvise, build rapport very quickly and maintain relationships. Unlike corporate world that we already know our teammates / managers; we didn’t know each other. Dealing with people are always harder than dealing with technologies; we don’t know what agendas someone might have back in their mind, it’s even harder to predict or guess when we only meet for the first time.

4) Building Relationship Is More Than Just Exchanging Namecards

Well this is something I already knew when I was in corporate. It is always about following up with people and help each other to build a solid connection, instead of just attending a bunch of networking events and getting name cards. Instead, I keep every name card and inventory them on my contact list; and I reach out to people that have mutual genuine interest. Follow up, follow up.. and more follow ups.

5) Know How To Handle Rejection

Actually even since the very beginning I was already handling it okay; I never take things personally and moved on very quickly if someone rejected my interview request. It is so much more valuable to focus on things that I can control rather than dwelling with rejection.

 

To be continued to the next post…

What are you willing to learn today?

 

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