It is a sign of the times ..

– the economy is really bad. As I write, I know of many seniors who are struggling to find a job and are very exasperated. Moreover, it is isn’t helping that companies are laying off employees all over as well. At this time, I ask myself a few questions

What should we do in this seemingly gloomy situation?
Why is that most go for the traditional path of trying to find jobs in the many banks in Singapore?
Agreed that 1 year ago, it was the ‘safe’ or ‘conventional’ path but with banks falling apart left, right and centre, isn’t is time we moved on to something different?

When I asked myself the same question two year ago, I applied for a program called RealAcad(www.realacad.org). I was intrigued by the fact that this program took a group of 10-15 students from across the world and in a room in Stanford or Harvard or Singapore, they built a venture from scratch in a week. I went through a rigorous interview procedure and voila! I was selected! The next challenge was to find funding for the program. With a mix of loans from parents, friends and money I had saved up, I managed to fly to Stanford – right into the hotbed of the Silicon valley… and nothing could have prepared me for what lay ahead the next week.

I spent the most unforgettable week in my life with 18 other top performers from across the world who had accomplished a lot more than me in life and were driven and looking to learn. Sleepless nights, lots and lots of crises, singing, dancing, confrontation, firing – this one week had it all. At the end of the week, we formed not 1, but 4 new ventures ranging from an organization to train leaders through athletics to a student consulting group. At the end of it though, the part of creating a venture seemed negligible when compared to the memories of managing people, their expectations, leading the team and doing so while making sure everyone is motivated and having fun that presented the real challenge..

And that’s when it hit me, that’s what it takes to run a successful venture.. And the question on entrepreneurship was answered and I realized one other thing, it is not for the weak hearted.. :)

RealAcad inspired me to try start my own venture and I have since been running my own talk show for NUS students. Please support it by visiting

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