Personal, Thoughts

What kind of tragedy deserves more sympathy?

Should there be a scale for tragedies, that we pay more attention to those events higher on the scale, ignoring those at the bottom?

I used to believe that people should help people first, not animals or the planet. So to me, NGOs dealing with animal welfare, environment or anything that does not directly improve the welfare of the human life are a waste of time.

Then I realized something.

Some care about people, some care about animals and some care about environment. We are different.

But we all fit.

The world is filled with different people and it’s like we’re different pieces of jigsaw puzzle. We can’t be more different but we cannot do without each other because the big picture can only happen when this different pieces come together. It is stupid to think one piece of puzzle is more important than the other.

So yea, neither is Boston or Pakistan is more tragic than the other, more deserving of attention or sympathy. In fact, don’t measure them on the same scale.

 

Elisha Tan is the Founder of TechLadies. TechLadies is a community for women in Asia to connect, learn, and advance as programmers in the tech industry. Elisha is also the Developer Programs Regional Lead for Asia Pacific at Facebook.

 
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Starting up, Thoughts

Fall back plan

Was talking to an entrepreneur earlier today and he shared that when he started his law firm, he didn’t have a fall back plan. He bought over the company he worked at a monthly installment of $5,000. His pay at that company? $700.

The lack of fall back plan made him hustle hard.

Then I thought, I have a lot of fall back plans – I can get a job, I don’t pay rent, I’m gonna be fine even if Learnemy fails.

Hmmm.

 

 

Elisha Tan is the Founder of TechLadies. TechLadies is a community for women in Asia to connect, learn, and advance as programmers in the tech industry. Elisha is also the Developer Programs Regional Lead for Asia Pacific at Facebook.

 
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Starting up, Thoughts

‘Luck’

Recently I spoke to an entrepreneur about this other founder, whom we all went to Silicon Valley together last year, whose startup just got acquired from some connections he made over there.

The entrepreneur said, “He (the founder) was lucky.”

Something in that statement didn’t sit well with me, but I couldn’t put my finger to it. Then I know what it is – that founder didn’t get lucky, he made luck for himself.

He actively chose to board the plane to SV, he actively chose to attend events and he actively chose to talk about his startup.

This is no luck.

It’s a conscious effort.

Which means that it can be created.

 

Elisha Tan is the Founder of TechLadies. TechLadies is a community for women in Asia to connect, learn, and advance as programmers in the tech industry. Elisha is also the Developer Programs Regional Lead for Asia Pacific at Facebook.

 
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Starting up, Thoughts

There are two kinds of people – founders and everyone else

Last week I needed a cab and didn’t have cash with me. So naturally, I asked the taxi driver if she accepts payments by card.

Usually if I get a ‘no’, the driver will not take me – but not this driver.

She said, “I will bring you to an ATM. I want to earn your trip.”

Immediately she piqued my curiosity. All the drivers I’ve come across chose to miss out on the potential earning from an additional trip over convenience. It’s the first time I hear a taxi driver says, “I want to earn your trip”.

I knew she was of a different breed.

So I started making small talks, hoping to find out more about her. When I finally got around to ask what she was doing prior to driving a taxi, she told me she did “office work”.

It was only until I told her that I am an entrepreneur that she eased up and confessed…

She used to be an entrepreneur.

 

From my other observations, I’m starting to agree that founders are really different from everyone else.

I recently had a couple of meetings where I shared that Learnemy, at its current stage, is a long way from being a million dollar business.

Here are two responses I’ve got:

“You need to rethink about Learnemy. You are a university graduate and you are missing out $2k – $3k of salary every month.”

“You need to rethink about Learnemy. You are not going to make millions out of this business.”

(Note: Reponses are obviously paraphrased and not the actual words.)

Managers at SPRING made the first response. Boyd Au made the second.

Both responses are made with my interests in mind. Both responses suggested I do the same thing. But the mentality behind each of the responses can’t be more different from the other.

 

Elisha Tan is the Founder of TechLadies. TechLadies is a community for women in Asia to connect, learn, and advance as programmers in the tech industry. Elisha is also the Developer Programs Regional Lead for Asia Pacific at Facebook.

 
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Personal, Thoughts

Nice things or nice person

Just came across this status someone posted on FB,

Think I should stop being nice to people as most of the time people take it for granted. Being taken for granted is not a nice feeling to be honest. In any kind of relationships, there should be a good balance. Be it friendship, love relationship, kinship, teacher & student relationship, employer & employee relationship. As the saying goes, it takes two hands to clap. The person giving will eventually be tired if the receiving end is always taking. One day, the person giving will disappear eventually and say goodbye. People always regret whenever they lose something or someone but it will be too late by then. So, take a moment, remember and appreciate the people around you. Do not take things or anyone for granted.”

It got me thinking.

Do you do nice things to people to get rewarded (in this case, the feeling of being recognized or not taken for granted) or do you do nice things simply because you are a nice person?

A nice person does nice things regardless of responses.

I actually don’t remember when was the last time I did something nice without wanting to be rewarded with good feelings, a smile or a “thank you”. Do you?

 

 

Elisha Tan is the Founder of TechLadies. TechLadies is a community for women in Asia to connect, learn, and advance as programmers in the tech industry. Elisha is also the Developer Programs Regional Lead for Asia Pacific at Facebook.

 
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