Interview With Gina Kloes, Leadership Expert and Peak Performance Strategist #SEWGH

Stars From All Nations (SFAN) is hosting their Student Entrepreneurship Week at British Council and Kempinski Hotel on the 26th to 28th of July, 2018.

There will be a wide array of speakers at the event including Afua Osei (She Leads Africa), Kevin Nyame (MeQasa) and Ethel Cofie (Edel Consulting).

Tech Nova is doing a series of interviews with some attendees coming to the event. Our first interview featured Samuel Mensah, an Experience Designer at McKinnsey.

Our second interview features international speaker Gina Kloes.

Background

Gina Kloes is an Award Winning Author, Game Changer, Leadership Expert, & Peak Performance Strategist. She ignites the entrepreneurial spirit, unleashes passion and accelerates success for entrepreneurs, executives and teams around the globe.

As an international thought leader, Branson Centre for Entrepreneurship Mentor, Tony Robbins Trainer & Deepak Chopra Vedic Master Educator, Gina is a catalyst for exponential leadership, massive joy and creating lives and business enterprises we are proud to pass on to future generations.

You can find out more about Gina at:  https://www.ginakloes.com

Interview

Tech Nova(TN): It would appear that the number of students coming out of universities are opting to be more entrepreneurial by starting their own businesses rather than opt for the 9 – 5 desk job. Why do you think that is?

Gina Kloes (GK): There are so many paths after college. As children, we are asked, “what do you want to be when you grow up?”. Why choose only one thing?

One statistic found that people will have at least seven careers in their lifetime.  Another research study shows that people change jobs on average 15 times in their life.  It seems there is not just one set direction for anyone.

Most of us are unaware that we can change our imprints and change the internal maps that lead our lives.  We often believe, “this is just my life, the way it is.”  That is far from the truth.

Whether you become an entrepreneur or choose a 9-5 job is a very personal choice.  There are different skill sets attached to each.

While becoming an “entrepreneur” can sound glamorous, it requires grit, a mindset that will move you forward when the odds and others say you can’t do it.  You need passion, determination, and the desire and ability to get out of your comfort zone. You need to be able to fail and fail and fail again until you succeed. The “entrepreneur” path is awesome for people who are self-starters with a vision and a mission to get it done. Is this your path?

Instead, you might enjoy being part of a bigger organization where your talents can shine and where you can have more structure and predictability.  There are success stories in a 9-5 job also.

Know that you can choose one path today and it will most likely change in the future.  The key is to get started out of college and learn about your own strengths and weaknesses.  Some graduates freeze and can’t decide, thinking it is their one and only choice in life.  In fact, it will be one of many choices!

Just choose a path, learn from it and take charge of your own life journey.


Tech Nova (TN): Some would say that young people are just seeing entrepreneurship as a way of just making money instead of actually trying to solve problems in their environment. Do you agree/disagree with that statement and why?

Gina Kloes (GK): I believe that people can both make money and solve world challenges including the problems in our environment.  I don’t believe that you have to choose one or the other.

Many of us are taught that to be happy we have to do more, be more and have more which can lead people to focus more on money.  Young people might believe that the more money they make, the more successful they will be.  While this may be true, success in life does not always lead to fulfillment.  There are many people with lots of money that are unhappy.

Success in life is 80% mindset and psychology and only 20% skills.

What I have learned working with thousands of executives and millennial entrepreneurs is that beyond financial success, people crave meaning in their life. Often this meaning and true fulfillment comes from doing things (a business or otherwise) that serve something beyond yourself, whether its the environment or other humanitarian efforts.  The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals define ways to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. I believe that the entrepreneurs that can integrate these higher goals into their businesses will be the ones that are both successful and fulfilled.

Check out the U.N. Goal below:

https://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/sustainable-development-goals/


TN: The current education system in Ghana does not appear to be teaching students how to sell or be marketable. The system is still stuck on the “Chew and Pour” concept where students memorize just to pass exams. If you could, what would you add to their current curriculum to make students more competitive when they come out of school?

GK: I think this is not just a challenge for Ghana, it’s a challenge in many educational systems worldwide. Success in life is 80% mindset and psychology and only 20% skills.

The key to marketing and sales is learning to build rapport, make meaningful connections, and effectively communicate with your audience.  These skills can be learned, whether it’s for in-person meetings or connecting through technology.

Ghana itself has been welcoming to the startup ecosystem.  With the creation of the Accra Digital Centre, the government is showing its desire to support an ecosystem for innovation and entrepreneurship.  Accelerators and Incubators like MEST are also supporting the growth of entrepreneurship.

You may be an exceptional person or have an extraordinary business idea but if you can’t convey that message in a way that is impactful, you won’t have a chance at succeeding.

Gina Kloes. Image Credit: ginakloes.com

Additionally, it is crucial that students understand their own mindset and how their own beliefs and thinking shape their lives.  From the time we are born throughout our entire life, every word we say or hear, every thought we have, every experience in our life leave an imprint in our mind and our body that will determine whether we are a success or a failure in life. Those imprints create a map that guides our life.

Most of us are unaware that we can change our imprints and change the internal maps that lead our lives.  We often believe, “this is just my life, the way it is.”  That is far from the truth.

By learning some simple skills, students can immediately shift their mindset starting right now! Check out two of my videos below that show the impact of learning the power of your mind while unleashing the energy in your body:

*Gina Kloes: Game Changer Leadership Event for future leaders in Johannesburg:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nbqwcWHnQ8Y

*Gina Kloes: Say Yes! Gina Inspires her Audience

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WCyrcm5aWH8


TN: Where do you see Ghana in the next 5 years in terms of entrepreneurship? Will we be seeing more successful startups being funded? Will schools and universities be more open to starting entrepreneurship courses? What are your thoughts on the matter?

GK: As technological advances continue to integrate our world, geographical boundaries are falling away.  Countries that were once more challenging to reach are just a click away.  Entrepreneurs and startups are more easily able to connect to funding sources.

Most of us are unaware that we can change our imprints and change the internal maps that lead our lives.  We often believe, “this is just my life, the way it is.”  That is far from the truth.

While angel investors and venture capital were the dream of many in the past, there are so many more options for fundraising.  Crowdfunding and ICOS can be great options for people.  Government authorities are still deciding how to best regulate ICOs and it remains to be seen how this will shake out. There are a whole host of angel networks looking for great deals also.

Image Credit: ginakloes.com

Sovereign wealth funds, including those in Ghana, also provide more options for startups.

Last year, venture capital funding in the continent of Africa topped $560 million, up 53% year on year.  While each of the 54 countries in Africa is unique, funding overall is increasing as a trend.

Ghana itself has been welcoming to the startup ecosystem.  With the creation of the Accra Digital Centre, the government is showing its desire to support an ecosystem for innovation and entrepreneurship.  Accelerators and Incubators like MEST are also supporting the growth of entrepreneurship.

Accra Digital Center

While other countries in Africa might have a more established startup ecosystem, Ghana is making its mark as a more integrated ecosystem for startups beyond those in Accra.

As demand for talent increases, schools will need to begin to train the next generation of students to meet these needs.  There are more and more schools and universities worldwide focusing on entrepreneurship. There are also more and more specialty programs on entrepreneurship all around the world.  I am one of the key educators at the Draper University of Heroes, founded by Tim Draper, a Silicon Valley Venture Capital Icon.  Every year we are hosting more and more entrepreneurs from all around the world who come to our 5-week program to become immersed in entrepreneurship and what is possible.  Startup entrepreneurs with the right mindset, dream and passion can really achieve anything!


TN: Evidence from nine Sub-Saharan countries shows that youth generally have positive entrepreneurial attitudes and perceptions. How can young entrepreneurs unlock their potentials for greatness?

GK: Greatness is a decision. As I said earlier, success is 80% mindset and only 20% strategy, yet when someone wants to be “great” at something they often focus on the strategy first.

Here are some very quick tips for unlocking greatness:

  1. Understand what drives you. At the SFAN week, we will explore the themes of your life and how they impact every decision you make.  What drives you every day?  When you understand what has motivated you or not motivated you in the past, you can begin to create new motivations to get where you want to be.
  2. Have a mission beyond yourself. If all you focus on every day is yourself, you will be alone on the island. Doing something beyond yourself and for the greater good creates a deeper sense of fulfillment and purpose.  People don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care about them and a greater vision.
  3. Know that Leaders Go First. Unlocking greatness often requires that you go 1st in any challenge. Go first in life.  Be the leader, not the follower. Take risks.
  4. Fail and fail and fail again until you succeed. This is part of the Hero Oath at Silicon Valley’s Draper University for Heroes where exceptional entrepreneurs are born. You have to be willing to fail so that you can get the lesson to succeed. One of Facebook’s original mottos was: Move Fast and Break Things. Facebook knew that you will learn if you are willing to fail and break things!
  5. Create Success Habits. Small things done consistently create major impact.  Successful habits imprint in our brain and inspire others to do the same.
  6. Commit to Constant Learning. Our world is changing at exponential speed. We must create space in our day to continue to learn and grow.

TN: What are you hoping that the Student Entrepreneurship week event hosted by Stars From All Nations (SFAN) will achieve?

GK: My vision for this week is that the participants leave with a #SayYES attitude for success and fulfillment in life.  I know they will have a week full of surprise, wisdom and breakthroughs.  They will leave this week with tools to unlock the power of their mind, unleash the passion in their heart and breakthrough to the extraordinary success that is truly possible in life!

Joseph-Albert Kuuire is the creator and editor of TechNovaGh.com, an online digital platform focusing on technology in Ghana.

I’m also a UX Designer, book reader, and tech enthusiast (duh!)

Email: [email protected]