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Ky Nam

Ky Nam

Hi! I'm a dreamer, doer, and empathizer. Also chief product & community at LEAN Social. I enjoy writing about productivity, learning, and social issues.

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Why no adult trusts a young person’s idea?

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sinh viên mơ ước làm dự án người lớn không tin tưởng

I’m 21. Yet, I have worked with professors, CEOs, investors, politicians, etc, just like I was their partner.

I have always been a dreamer, constantly coming up with new ideas and thinking outside the box. Last summer, I started working on LEAN Social, a website with customized study-with-me rooms to foster motivations in how young people study and work. The idea was great and we won some competitions.

But almost always when we talked to established founders, investors, VCs, or even government support funds, nobody thought we were worth their while. After all, Asians aren’t expected to leave school until they are 30 and get a PhD lol.

student's dream against the mistrust of adults

We almost gave up. But we kept remembering why we started the project in the first place. We were inspired by building something scalable that belonged to our young generation, and which could help millions like us.

So we were not willing to let adults’ doubts stand in the way.

We started networking and attending university events, looking for any opportunities to showcase our idea. At a startup competition, we met a tech entrepreneur from Tokyo who saw something special in my idea. He took my team under his wing and provided guidance and support throughout the first few months of our project.

After dozens of events, online networking, and referrals, we had managed to meet multiple professors, CEOs, and product specialists who were enthusiastic to spend their time mentoring us.

Our project LEAN Social is now receiving inputs from advisors with more than 200+ years of combined experience in tech, product, and social impact. And we are super excited to channel that energy into the young population we serve 😉

Through my journey, we learned three impactful lessons that are crucial for young entrepreneurs:

1. Believe in yourself.

No matter how many times you’re rejected or how many obstacles you face, you have to believe in yourself and your ideas. Your confidence and determination will carry you through the tough times. If I and my partner did not have faith in the project for the long term, none of our team members would, and certainly not one of our mentors 🙂

2. Network and find mentors.

You don’t have to do it all alone. Building a supportive network of like-minded individuals and finding mentors who can guide you can make all the difference. It could be anyone. A senior from your school. A professor. A judge from a competition. Your mom and dad. Anyone. Once you talk to more people, more people will become interested in you.

3. Keep trying and never give up.

The road to success is never easy, but it’s important to keep pushing forward. Remember that every failure is just a stepping stone to your eventual triumph. No matter how many rejections you face, never give up on your dream – especially if it’s a meaningful one. Surround yourself with people who believe in you and never stop pushing forward.

Your time to shine will come.

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