Monthly Archives: Dec 2014

Don’t Stress Over Things You Cannot Control

My interviews are carried out face to face and until I get to the location I don’t know what the environment will be like.

Since my equipment is fairly basic the sound quality is not as good as I like it to be. I am working ways to improve this.

This week I attempted to do a recording at a trade show so the environment was even more challenging. I found a room that was empty and started recording. A few minutes after the interview started a couple a people entered. Both my interviewee and I informed them that we were recording They acknowledge this and went quiet. Two to three minutes later they started talking and making noise and we asked them to be quiet again. They went quiet again for a couple of minutes they started to talk and make noise again. This was repeated several more times. Finally we abandoned the interview and rescheduled for the next day. However the next day I was unable to complete it as the interviewee was unavailable.

Throughout the whole process I felt OK as I remembered “Don’t stress over the things you cannot control.”

Creatures of Habit

Today I attended the Shanghai Entrepreneurs Luncheon. This is a regularly organised monthly event I have been attending for over a year and eventually gave rise to what I am doing now.

This one was different because a lot fewer people attended.

Why was this?

Lee Lam, the invited speaker: gave lots of useful and good anecdotes, the food was described as delicious and authentic Vietnamese by many of the attendees and it was organised in the same manner as all previous.

The reason, based on my previous experiences, was the venue, Cyclo, was different.

This reminded me of how much we crave habits and routine even amongst entrepreneurs. One of the attendees introduced himself by mentioning that the idea for his logo business came about as he was researching his idea for a trading company, which he immediately abandoned.

In conclusion allowing some routines to be broken can lead to some positive surprises.

I will be interviewing Lee Lam in the future so you will get a glimpse of what he has to offer, but not the food.

First Presentation of the Project

Evergreen 1

Today I was lucky enough to be invited to present to a local company Evergreen Holding Group.

They were interested in what I am doing with entrepreneur interviews.

They wanted the answer to five questions

Q: Why I decide to do interviews?

A: Because now one else is doing it.

Q: How to select interviewees?

A: Entrepreneurs that are willing to tell other entrepreneurs their experiences and offer advice

Q: What is the biggest challenge?

A: Learning how to use the different platforms.

Q: What do interviewees have in common?

A: For example they are all generous, friendly, helpful, resourceful, determined, positive and more

Q: What types of character makes an entrepreneur?

A: Anyone that wants to make a difference.

I created a keynote presentation, The Beginning, of nine slides. The total presentation lasted just over two hours with questions and answers.

The experience was very enjoyable.


The Solution is Out There.

Since starting interviewing entrepreneurs.

There are a lot more sounds around us than we think. This explains the feedback I am getting about the audio quality.

Rings, glass tables, car horns and more make a lot more noise than you think.

I say ‘yeah’, ‘ehh’, other annoying phrases and echo more than I like. I am working on it.

The solution is out there and there is a lot of it.

So I will be doing a lot of reading, watching online videos, asking friends and strangers “do you know how to do this?” and more.

I started so I will finish.

So stay with me. It will get better.


The Beginning

I have never done this before so the challenge was how to begin.

It turned out that the beginning after I decided that I was going to do it was to ask the right person. “If I do some audio interviews for you will you be interested in using them on your website and app?”.

The response was “Yes and I will help find you entrepreneurs that you can interview”.

And so began what is now AsiaBizStories.

I still have a long way to go: sound, workflow, improving the website etc. With four interviews online and another about to go online next week, I feel pretty good now.

The important lessons I have learned from the entrepreneurs I have interviewed already are:

  • Create your minimal viable product (MVP). The reason why the site is so bare at the moment.
  • Don’t listen to anyone that is negative on the idea. Why I haven’t waited longer than now.
  • Listen to people that have a positive spin on the idea and can give suggestions on how to improve it. Why I have started.
  • There will be times when you feel bad about what you are doing. Doesn’t last long.
  • You will feel super good about what you are doing. Lasts longer than the previous.

Thanks to Max at

Others have helped along the way and they will get a mention.