Senior Startup Advocate, Agora
8 years in China > 8 months in San Francisco > now back in Western Canada.
I love mentoring early-stage entrepreneurs and startups, and believe the path to success is in the approach and having the right “entrephilosophy”. I also love to help drive startup communities, which is the arena you’ll find me spending most of my time as Senior Startup Advocate for Agora.io.
Over the years my experience has taught me a great deal about managing cultural differences, the philosophy behind success and failure, and how much I love building a strong startup community that should be led by entrepreneurs, for entrepreneurs.
I also love creating content; my latest podcast, The Negotiation, is designed to bridge the cultural divide between the West and East through interviews with China and APAC region experts to help improve and drive successful cross-border business.
I have also become deeply passionate about mental health, having been recently diagnosed with ADHD. The issue of mental health cannot be overstated, and I will always jump at the opportunity to talk about or take action towards helping reduce the stigma.
My superpower is in people and relationships, and when I mentor I focus on building the people who are building companies rather than helping them build their company. It’s not what you’re building; it’s why and how you build it that’s a repeatable process that leads to eventual success.
I have been fortunate enough to speak at many conferences such as Collision in Toronto, Startupfest in Montreal, East meets West in Honolulu, Asia BEAT in Taipei, LIFT in Geneva, GMIC in Beijing, TEDxSuzhou, GSMA Innovation Labs, Startup Grind in Guangzhou, and Vancouver, and many others. I’ve also vetted more than 3000 companies applying for the Chinaccelerator program, investing in and graduating 92 over my years there. I’ve also been a mentor and judge at dozens of startup competitions including Founder HotSeat, Startup Weekend, 3 Day Startup, NYU HackShanghai, Beijing Tech Hive, Fail Faster, Mobile Monday, Startup NEXT, AngelHack, and Lean Startup Machine.
To all early-stage founders hustling to get your company up and running or struggling with the realities of being an entrepreneur please give me a shout, I’m happy to jump on a call and see how I can help!