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Joseph Germani, Founder of Germani Productions

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Joseph Germani is the famous internet celebrity that Malaysians across the country have come to adore and recognize, primarily through Youtube videos that he passionately produces and stars in. Despite having rose to prominence in the entertainment scene and achieving stardom, very few people know that Joseph is a self-made man who came from humble beginnings.

Originally, a student who was pursuing his studies in Interior Design, Joseph’s life began to take an unexpected turn when he began to experiment with YouTube. With nothing else but a small room, an adequate camera and a voice that wants to be heard, Joseph began making and posting videos on YouTube in 2011. His commitment, quick wit, incredible sense of humour and knack for video production was quickly recognized by many who had seen his work online. Within a span of a few short years, Joseph quickly rose to forefront of the YouTube scene in Malaysia. Widely celebrated today, Joseph continues to make videos, a passion that had now led to a successful full time profession.

The Asian Entrepreneur interviews Joseph today, who shares a few words about his journey, his thoughts on the YouTube scene in Malaysia.

In your own words what do you do, Joseph?
I would say I post videos on YouTube with contents based on my personality. With those, I say what I feel is right or wrong. Basically, my point of views in different situations.

How did it all start for you?
I wanted to join a “Apprentice” inspired reality web series, so I sent in a 1 minute video telling why I deserve to join the show. Yeah, they didn’t pick me and that spiralled into this.

Could you walk us through the process of how you got into the Youtube scene?
Well let’s see. I mean, as for me, it wasn’t something as highlighted in my life in the beginning. It was fun being recognised on the streets for some videos I made, but I didn’t really take it as a serious thing, until I have decided on pursuing YouTube.

Generally, the YouTube scene was interesting at first, because I tend to say things that people don’t usually dare to voice out, and of course when that happens, the party that felt threatened, starts typing out comments to defend their point of view, which was fine! It’s fun, I like healthy arguments. Proves that there’s different people in the world.

What would you say are the major perks of being in the scene?
I get to meet so many idols, and the awesome thing is, they knew who I was and what I do online. So, that’s really awesome.

Did you find anything particularly difficult initially and how did you overcome it?
For me, the biggest challenge was going through things that an entrepreneur must go through. I mean, I studied interior design, so I have limited knowledge on what to do, to sustain a company or even especially dealing with YouTube and the Advertising and Marketing scene in Malaysia. But through trial and error, and a few books, I sort of got the hang of how things are done; so really putting those things into practice, is what got me here now.

How do you find the Youtube industry in Malaysia?
So far, so good, I mean, I think the beauty of it, is that you can find so many different type of things on YouTube, and everyone has different taste. All I see is the future of YouTube in Malaysia is going to be bright, if the right people with the right attitude comes into the community.

Do you think there are major differences in the approach to entertainment in Malaysia as compared to the West?
There certainly is, I think Malaysia is still a blue ocean when it comes to entertainment, there’s so many sectors unfilled, unexplored. So I hope this generation would take control, and gear our entertainment industry to a higher entertainment level.

What can we expect from Joseph Germani in the next few years?
I think, hopefully I will initiate what I have in plan. Trust me, it might change the Malaysian entertainment industry in a exciting way. But the pyramids aren’t built in a day, so let’s hope that I could do everything I can do make that happen!

What are some personal principles or personal values that guide you and your career?
Believe in yourself, don’t get shot down; in fact, dream big.

What is your definition of success?
The moment when you finish something, you take up a cup of tea, staring at what you’ve done, and feeling good about it.

What is the secret to good entertainment?
I can’t tell you yet. It would be spoiling it for everyone! It’s better to know less, and feel entertained!

In your opinion, what are the key to success?
Discipline, and good health. Both, I am trying to achieve. Getting more work done, and more sleep!

Connect
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/GermaniProductions
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/TheJosephGermani
Twitter: www.twitter.com/mistergermani
Linkedin: http://www.linkedin.com/in/jgermani

Callum Connects

Denise Morris Kipnis, Founder & Principal of ChangeFlow Consulting

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Denise Mossis Kipnis’ curiosity in people and the world, lead her to set up ChangeFlow Consulting.

What’s your story?
I’m driven by curiosity. Having been the only one in a room who looks like me for most of my life, I developed a curiosity about who stays, who leaves and who thrives in minority/majority situations including when and how connection and collaboration happen. I was a systems thinker long before I knew what that was, always asking why and so what; and seeing the pieces, the whole, and the places in between. So helping people and organisations move through the complexity of transformation feels natural to me.

What excites you most about your industry?
I see change and inclusion as two sides of the same thing; I don’t practice one without the other. Some people see change as death, as loss, as exhausting. And it can be. But I see in the work I do as an opportunity for something new or hidden to emerge. When an organisation understands that it is first a group of people, who themselves represent and belong to groups of people, and it begins to tackle what it would mean to understand and learn from all that talent, all that diversity, to have them all working for and not against the organisation, to truly unleash all that their people have to offer; that’s magic.

What’s your connection to Asia?
Change and inclusion are personal values as well as professional strengths. For me, living and working outside of the States was a bold experiment to see whether any of the stuff I’d learned about change and inclusion would work outside of the US. My husband and I targeted Asia specifically: it would be the greatest contrast, culturally speaking, for me; and a unique career springboard for him.

Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
Although I’ve practiced in other cities, I am biased towards Singapore. In some ways it’s what Los Angeles is to the rest of the United States, a microcosm of sorts. The regional/global nature of it means that so many different nationalities and cultures are represented. As a result of this mix, you never know what you might get. In some situations, cultural dynamics are obvious, sometimes subdued. The variability is compelling.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
“Never ask anyone to do anything you wouldn’t do yourself.” Michael Rouan.

Who inspires you?
Often it’s a “what” not a “who.” I can get inspiration from a passage in a book or a situation in a movie, as well as a turn of a phrase or watching people interact. I often make the biggest connections between the various threads I’m working on when I’m sitting in someone else’s event.

What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
I’m honestly not blown away by much. Instead, I’m struck how circular things can be: ideas often come back around with a slightly different twist and I watch the way it shakes things loose for people. I recently sat through a workshop on Self as Instrument, and despite being thoroughly versed already, I learned something. In preparing for a panel on design thinking, I unearthed a new language to describe things.

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
You’ve caught me at a good time. I’m sitting in appreciation and gratitude for all my experiences, because I wouldn’t be who I was today if all that has happened, didn’t. And yet one thing comes to mind: It wasn’t until I redesigned my website two years ago (shout out to Brew Creative!) that I realised I hadn’t made explicit agreements with my past clients as to what I could share publicly about our engagement, or whether I could use their logos in my promotional materials. In my business, confidentiality is so important, and yet I need to be able to talk about the work as reputation and experience leads to the next success, and so on. It turned out a lot of the contacts I had known had left the organisations where the work was done, so they couldn’t help at that point. So the practice I’m carrying forward is to get those agreements up front, and to make sure my relationships in client systems are broad as well as deep.

How do you unwind?
Science fiction, puzzles, wine.

Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
Home. I don’t travel to relax, I travel to learn and explore.

Everyone in business should read this book:
Built to Change, by Ed Lawler and Chris Worley. To my knowledge, it’s the first pivot from advising organisations away from stability and toward dynamism, from strategic planning to strategizing as an action verb; to blow up the traditions and rigidity that impede organisations from developing change capability.

Shameless plug for your business:
We’re taught that there are two kinds of people: those who see forests, and those who see trees. There is a third type, my type, and we see the ecosystem. Worms, climate, birds, the spaces in between. This is the perspective organisations need to be successful in solving complex problems and thriving in change.
ChangeFlow uniquely blends four disciplines (two of which are multi-disciplinary in themselves): organisation development, culture and inclusion, change management and project management.

How can people connect with you?
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ChangeFlowConsulting/
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/dmorriskipnis/
LinkedIn Company page: https://www.linkedin.com/company/4862954/
Email: [email protected]
Website: http://www.changeflowconsulting.com

Twitter handle?
@ChangeFlow

This interview is part of the ‘Callum Connect’ series of more than 500 interviews

Callum Laing is an entrepreneur and investor based in Singapore. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is now a Partner at Unity-Group Private Equity and Co-Founder of The Marketing Group PLC. He is the author two best selling books ‘Progressive Partnerships’ and ‘Agglomerate’.

Connect with Callum here:
twitter.com/laingcallum
linkedin.com/in/callumlaing
Download free copies of his books here: www.callumlaing.com

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Callum Connects

Agnes Yee, Legal & Compliance Recruiter of Space Executive

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Agnes Yee started Space Executive in Singapore, which is a hub for businesses in some of the world’s fastest growing economies.

What’s your story?
After graduation, I joined a design media company as a Business Development Executive, during the era when ‘reading a magazine online’ was unheard of. I believe that laid the foundation for being unfazed by rejections.

I fell into recruitment pre-GFC and rode the highs and lows in the early years. A decade later, I decided to set up my own recruitment company, partly because I could. I’m acutely aware of the face that being an Asian female in Singapore is sometimes a privilege, and that many women in the world are living a very different existence.
Thereafter, we joined Space Executive as part of a merger. I am currently the Partner of Space Executive, a recruitment company focused specialist disciplines, including Legal, Finance, Digital, Sales and Marketing and Change. We also run Space Ventures, a venture capital business, which invests in seed and pre-series A businesses.

What excites you most about your industry?
On a daily basis, we’re influencing how one spends a third of their day. It is interesting how the Internet has transformed the industry, and I’m excited to see how we can harness technology to bring us to the next phase of this business.

The VC is an extension of applying our skills and experience in reading people. We very much invest in the people as much as the idea. Being a native Singaporean, it’s been exhilarating watching Southeast Asia becoming a hotbed of ideas; and young entrepreneurs simply daring to dream.

What’s your connection to Asia?
I’m a born and bred Singaporean. I love that I speak both English and Mandarin, grew up playing with Indian friends and eating Malay food.

Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
Singapore for the low barriers of entry to set up a business, but has to be China (and Hong Kong) for their hunger and constant innovation.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
青春不要留白 which translates to ‘Don’t waste your youth.’

Who inspires you?
Anyone who has gone against the grain.

What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
It wasn’t recent but reading the article on https://waitbutwhy.com/2015/12/the-tail-end.html never fails to blow my mind how little time we have left. Charting our lives in weeks, and realising I only have enough time left to enjoy 60 Christmas turkeys, read 300 books (all if I’m lucky); and mostly, I’m left with the last 5% of the time that I spend in-person with my parents.

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
I’m cognisant that every decision I made in life has brought me to where I am today, and I wouldn’t change one thing. But I’d really like to have had more time to travel.

How do you unwind?
Exercise and wine.

Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
Trekking any mountain in Asia. It brings us back to the most basic. To overcome elements of nature and our own mind.

Everyone in business should read this book:
Start with Why, Simon Sinek

Shameless plug for your business:
Space Executive started in Singapore, a hub for businesses in some of the world’s fastest growing economies. We assist organisations in accessing a targeted and specialised, and often times transient talent pool.

Out of Singapore, we have recruited across 14 countries; and have embarked on our global expansion plans with offices in Hong Kong and London this year, and US, Japan and Europe in the following years.

Space Ventures provides funding, management and financial guidance to young businesses with original ideas. We have invested in peer to peer lending platforms, credit scoring, social media education, and other start-ups spanning diverse industries. We are always interested in hearing more about new ideas.

How can people connect with you?
https://www.linkedin.com/in/agnesyee/

This interview is part of the ‘Callum Connect’ series of more than 500 interviews

Callum Laing is an entrepreneur and investor based in Singapore. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is now a Partner at Unity-Group Private Equity and Co-Founder of The Marketing Group PLC. He is the author two best selling books ‘Progressive Partnerships’ and ‘Agglomerate’.

Connect with Callum here:
twitter.com/laingcallum
linkedin.com/in/callumlaing
Download free copies of his books here: www.callumlaing.com

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