Four high-profile tech entrepreneurs shared what it takes to build a successful start-up during RMIT Vietnam’s Career Week.
Attended by students and alumni, the panel discussion featured Christy Le, Managing Director of Fossil Vietnam – Misfit; Tran Tuan Anh, Director of Operations and Finance at Shopee; Nguyen Hai Trieu, Founder and CEO of YouNet Media; and Le Duc Huy, Head of Digital Content at Tiki Corp.
Mr Anh asked each audience member to reflect on whether he or she is the kind of person who should be an entrepreneur.
“The challenge is, are you a decision-maker?” he asked.
“In this narrow timeframe and with this narrow amount of money that has been provided, can I solve this problem that I think I can solve?
“If you can do that, you’re an entrepreneur. I would encourage people who think that way to become entrepreneurs.”
Ms Le, meanwhile, explained that working for a large corporation provides stability, but it is harder to see change. Alternatively, start-ups react much more quickly.
“If you want to move fast, if you want to see more of your effort turned into products…a start-up will probably be a better environment,” she said.
Addressing how students can be entrepreneurs, Mr Trieu advised: “Watch and learn, see, meet people, go to conferences like this and learn what is happening.”
“Find out what is missing, and do you love it? If you love it, go talk to people and try to find people who have the same passion and build a plan.”
The importance of failure was a prominent topic, as new entrepreneurs are prone to mistakes.
Ms Le highlighted the importance of learning from failure, telling students that they should expect to fail a few times. The important thing, she argued, is what happens after these failures.
“You have to take failure seriously so that you grow from it,” she said.
“Fail fast, but after you fail, learn something from it and be responsible for the failure.”
Adding to Ms Le’s comment, Mr Anh stressed the importance of anticipating failure.
“More entrepreneurs fail than succeed,” he said bluntly.
“Can you accept that? Can you accept starting a business and not seeing results for two or three years down the road?”
More than 100 students attended the panel discussion, which was part of the University’s second Career Week of the year.
“This Career Week was focused on getting students from all programs started on a fulfilling career in engineering and technology industry,” said Melvin Fernando of RMIT Vietnam’s Career and Employment Service.
“In addition to a series of panel discussions, we also hosted a career expo where students networked with potential employers.”
RMIT Vietnam provides students with a range of services to promote successful entry into the workforce and develop effective career management skills.
Story: Michael Tatarski