Jonha Richman is cofounder of Vidpeo, a media company focused on engaging content for the socially and mobile-wired audience. She’s an advocate for diversity in technology and mentors young entrepreneurs from business ideation to promotion. Her works have been featured and syndicated in The Huffington Post, Fast Company, Business Insider, among others. You may connect with her on Twitter and LinkedIn.
Did you ever sit down and plan your career?
When I met with one executive at LinkedIn, the first thing he told was that my experience looked diverse (read: not so easy to follow). I think it somehow sums up how my career may seem to most people. My thirst for continuous learning has opened up various business collaboration opportunities which doesn’t necessarily look straightforward. From outbound marketing, to digital media, to publishing and currently advising fast growing startups in their digital and content marketing; while running a company that helps businesses telling their stories through videos. It all looks pretty unconventional.
Have you faced any challenges along the way and if so, how did you deal with them?
As someone who constantly strives to outpace and outgrow herself, I’ve been faced with various challenges along the way. Some of them more challenging than others. By setting my eyes to focus on my specific and time-bounded goals, this always allowed me to reposition myself back on track in cases when I felt lost.
What advice would you give someone who wishes to move in to a leadership position for the first time?
Use the same principle as to when you were trying to win the job in the first place. In order to climb up the next level of the ladder, you need to convince the stakeholders and decision makers as to what better contributions you could bring in to the table should you be given a much better seat in the company.
One of the most common mistakes that people make when trying to get a promotion is to simply think that they deserve it because they’ve been with the company for many years or they’ve relocated and needed much higher salary to sustain their lifestyle. Highlighting those self-serving reasons as to why they deserve the promotion will likely result into rejection. Therefore, framing your proposal towards what other benefits would the company have should they decide to give you more responsibilities will help them realise their growing potentials are and how you could potentially grow with them along the way.
When faced with two equally-qualified candidates, how would you decide who should have the role?
With the rising struggle in attracting and keeping talents these days, one of the most crucial decisions for businesses is finding the culture fit during the hiring process. It’s important to hire people not just for their skills and educational qualifications, but most importantly – their ability to understand and carry out the company’s vision. Someone who has done tremendous amount of research about the company, the values we believe in and understands how he fits in the mission is more likely to get hired than others who are just equally skilled and qualified, but not as driven.
How do you manage your own boss?
Since I’m working in consultancy and advisory roles for several companies, I don’t necessarily have a single boss in a traditional sense. So in way, I’m my own boss. Setting mini-milestones for myself allows me to be constantly motivated and celebrate the mini-successes when those milestones are achieved.
On a typical workday, how do you start your day and how does it end?
Starting and finishing everyday with rebounding routine where I would jump on a mini trampoline while thinking reaffirming thoughts on what I intend to accomplish throughout the day. Ending the day with another rebound allows me to meditate and ponder upon my actions during the day and whether those led me to reaching the goals I had set myself into accomplishing earlier on.
What advice can you give to our members about raising their profiles within their own organisations?
ABC – Always Be Contributing. Be the first to identify key areas to improve on and put in extra effort to help identify ways on how you could lead in improving them. Oftentimes, people only seek to accomplish the first part and fail to do the latter. This always sets them to failure because no one wants to work with people who only see issues. Every organisation needs people who could spot ways to improve and step up and show leadership capabilities in achieving them.
How have you benefited from coaching or mentoring?
Having mentors with different specialisations has allowed me to gather diverse perspectives and draw out more informed decisions. Instead of relying on my own judgment, I’ve been blessed to have three great mentors who advise me on life, finance and business operations as I strive to find balance in what I do.
Do you think networking is important and if so, what 3 tips would you give to a newbie networker?
I think that every people’s network is their net worth – in every sense of the word. We are the sum of the five people we usually hang out with so it’s very important to not get lost in the wrong crowd. Always think of what is it that you could contribute and help others with instead of thinking what others could do for you. By manifesting such giving attitude, you will attract the crowd which respect you for the value and contributions you bring in.
What does the future hold for you?
I enjoy diversity and the ability to learn in everything I’m involved in. I don’t necessarily have well-laid plans as to how I’d want my future to look like as I’m always looking for ways to improve myself. At the moment, I foresee myself as an advocate for diversity in technology and will keep in helping companies with their storytelling but who knows where the future leads – always open for collaborations.