On OpenDoors this week, we had a conversation with Yon, our 7th feature on The Entrance Series. Yon is currently a Senior Consultant at M800 Limited and he is responsible for the business development and account management for their flagship product, Maaiiconnect.
Yon is having a blast at his company, “This is the best job I’ve had!” he would say. However, he did not plan to get into the software industry initially. Born in Korea and raised in the US, Yon actually bought a one-way ticket to Hong Kong after becoming very interested in cryptocurrency trading.
By reaching out to the CEO of a cryptocurrency exchange on LinkedIn, he quickly landed a full-time role in Hong Kong but as the cryptocurrency market became more tightly regulated he also soon found himself without a job. Unlike many of our interviewees, Yon didn’t have the luxury to follow a step-by-step career plan and was in a much more desperate situation.
OpenDoors: You mentioned that you initially thought of your current role as a temporary one, tell us more about it.
Yon: My previous company decided to shut down the Hong Kong office and I suddenly realized that I was unemployed. I was actually ready to pack my bags and head back to the US but it was impossible because of Covid. I was stuck in Hong Kong and I basically took on the first job offer that came. I initially found this opportunity on one of the job listing sites and I thought it would be something temporary until I can make my way back home.
OpenDoors: And how do you view your role now?
Yon: I’m very happy with the work I’m doing now and I want to keep growing with this company. When I first started, I felt like I had nothing to lose and I was very willing to try new ways of helping the company sell the product. That involves playing around with cold-calling strategies, actively getting feedback from clients, and creating new marketing videos. The company appreciated the work I was doing and slowly handed over more responsibilities. I now look after some of our largest customers in North America and APAC and I really felt that I have grown a lot since joining the company.
OpenDoors: Many people would’ve just chilled out and not work as hard with a temporary role, what was your thinking?
Yon: Although my previous company was shutting down, I still had a strong work ethic and I wanted to achieve my fullest potential in Hong Kong. I was very eager to prove myself but more importantly, I was having fun. I didn’t feel like I had to be told what to do and I just wanted to explore different ways of selling a product.
OpenDoors: You are clearly doing something right as you recently got promoted. Are there any tips that you want to share with our readers?
Yon: Not really. I don’t have too many tips for people on getting promoted. For me, I was just at the right place at the right time and trying my best in my job duties. However, I do believe that people skill is the foundation of my role.
To be a good sales or account management person, you have to genuinely enjoy meeting new people, not be scared of rejection, have an ability in understanding how a person is feeling and you have to be able to stay calm.
These are not skills that I was born with and I certainly had to learn the hard way for some of them. OpenDoors: Are there any stories on having to learn those skills the hard way?
Yon: I remember I was pitching our product to a lady when I first started and I was too eager to make the deal happen. Having pitched non-stop and not letting her speak, I didn’t even pick up the cues that the lady had already lost interest. The lady has been staring at a blank space for a while and she suddenly stood up and said “You need to shut up now because I am leaving”. That was the last time I ever saw her.
This taught me to let the clients talk about their problems first and I also developed an ability to read them. Also, if you experienced a rejection like this early on in your career, you will never be scared again!
Get in touch with Yon:
This article was initially published on The Entrance by OpenDoors — a platform dedicated to helping individuals in Hong Kong build and expand their professional network. Pre-register for our intelligent network builder here.
Want to be featured or got a particular field/ industry that you’d like to learn about? Let us know: firstname.lastname@example.org