Garage Blog

The Aligned Entrepreneurs - On Pursuing Passion and Turning it into a Profession

This September we welcomed The Aligned Entrepreneurs to Garage Academy for an engaging panel discussion that unpacked valuable insights and inspiring stories from successful entrepreneurs, Mandy Pao, Founder of The Aligned Entrepreneurs and EQ International, Carla Martinesi (Founder of Chomp), and Sonia Samtani (Founder and CEO of All About You Wellness) who have turned their passion into a profession.


From finding fulfilment in work to understanding your values and achieving your goals and more, here are five key areas that emerged from the discussion:

On Work-Life Balance:

"Don't get too caught up and don't get dragged into societal expectations on how your schedule should be set. Design your own schedule." Mandy Pao, The Aligned Entrepreneurs.


Mandy, the founder of Aligned Entrepreneurs, emphasised the significance of maintaining a healthy work-life balance, especially for entrepreneurs. Carla from CHOMP shared her experience with personal burnout and how Mandy, one of her coaches, helped her overcome it. 


She encouraged individuals to design their own schedules and not be bound by societal expectations. Taking time for personal interests and self-care was seen as essential for overall well-being and success.


On Converting Passion into a Profession:

"It's not behaviour that needs changing, it's beliefs. Because every behaviour is a result of belief systems." Sonia Samtani, Founder and CEO of All About You Wellness


The panellists shared their personal journeys of discovering their passions and transforming them into successful businesses. They emphasised the importance of experimentation, trying different things, and being open to new opportunities. Starting small and gradually scaling up was a common theme among the speakers. Carla discussed the origins of CHOMP, an app that helps reduce food waste in Hong Kong. She highlighted the importance of starting small and gradually scaling up, while also emphasising the need to be relentless and reach out to others for support and collaboration.


On Pricing Services and Monetisation:

"With modern customers, it's very human-driven. We need to use an empathetic strategy to think about their pain points first." Mandy Pao, The Aligned Entrepreneurs.


Mandy discussed the challenge of monetising passion and pricing services. She highlighted the need to understand the target audience and their pain points. Offering value and focusing on the customer's needs were emphasised. Pricing strategies should be empathetic and considerate of the customer's perspective.


On Facing Challenges and Seeking Mentorship:

 ""It's hard to ask for help when no one else is going through the same thing. Seek mentorship and learn from experienced individuals in the field. Be relentless, don't feel the cringe, just do it. Reach out." Carla Martinesi, Chomp


 "Come to events like this, speak to people that have been in the industry for a little bit longer , ask them questions and most of them are very happy and willing to share."  Sonia Samtani, Founder of All About You Wellness


The panellists acknowledged the presence of challenges in pursuing passion as a profession. They emphasised the importance of seeking mentorship and learning from experienced individuals in the field. Networking events and mentorship programs were recommended as valuable resources for guidance and support.


On The Importance of Purpose and Vision:

 "Branding is not just about the logo, font and colours. It's about brand positioning, marketing, and what you are communicating to the market” Carla Martinesi, CHOMP


Modern customers value purpose-driven businesses and are more interested in the story and mission behind a brand.


Carla's focus on building a purpose-driven brand demonstrates her commitment to creating a business that aligns with her values and addresses a pressing social and environmental issue. By incorporating sustainability and conscious decision-making into her brand, Carla aims to make a positive difference in the world while providing value to her customers.


In Conclusion:

As the discussion came to a close, it became evident that pursuing one's passion is not only possible but also rewarding. The stories shared by the panellists showcased the transformative power of aligning passion with profession and the potential for personal and professional growth.


So reflect on your own passions and consider how you  can incorporate them into their professions. By taking small steps, seeking guidance, and embracing the journey, individuals can unlock their full potential and find fulfilment in their work.


Join us for The Aligned Entrepreneurs Part 2: Conscious Brand Building Workshop

Intrigued to learn more about the process and unpack your passion and purpose? Sign up to The Aligned Entrepreneurs Pt2. a half day workshop that will give you the tools to make your dream a reality.


"I'm currently a client of Mandy's and it has completely done a 180-degree change to our brand and made CHOMP what it is today."

Carla Martinesi (Founder of Chomp) on Mandy Pao, The Aligned Entrepreneurs

Find out more and sign up to the workshop here


About Garage Society

Garage Society helps businesses and individuals work better, through WorkStyle solutions tailored for them.  


From entrepreneurs to large corporates, we understand the diverse ways in which people work.   


We focus on getting to know you and your business so we can tailor a better and smarter way for you to get work done.


Whether it’s hot desks, private offices, or custom spaces for enterprises and MNCs, we’ve got a WorkStyle solution for you.  

 Interested in flexible workspace at Garage? Get in touch with us. 

Garage Blog Taste the Best of Sai Ying Pun: Our Handpicked Top 10 Lunch Spots!

Join us as we uncover the hidden gems and popular dining hotspots around Garage Society Sai Ying Pun. Whether you're a local in search of new lunchtime favorites or a visitor craving a taste of the vibrant dining scene, this guide is your ticket to culinary delight.


From quick bites to leisurely lunches, Sai Ying Pun has it all, and we're here to guide you through the flavors that await. Get ready to recharge and refuel at the lunch spots that call Sai Ying Pun home


By Tatiana Park, Community Marketing Executive
Garage Blog The Entrepreneur's Journey with Claire Yates, Founder of The Lion Rock Press

We sat down with former Garager and longtime friend of Garage, Claire Yates, Founder of The Lion Rock Press to explore the hurdles faced in running a business in Hong Kong, the benefits of co-working spaces, the challenges of exploring new business ventures in the world of tech and the significance of physical greeting cards in today's digital age - dive in below!

Garage Blog October Book Drive by gentle books at Garage Society

We've hosted our own open libraries for members across Garage Society for years, but for National Book month this October we are excited to work with gentle books to increase awareness and keep books in circulation and out of landfill!