Jamie Tan left the corporate world and started an education technology company in Singapore called Flying Cape. As Singapore aims to transform itself into a global education hub, now is the right time for Jamie and her venture.
What is your story?
I was a bit of a trouble-maker as a student. Schooled under the Singapore education system, I scored very average grades for most of my student life but managed to sneak my way into NTU.
By a stroke of luck, I discovered a new technique of learning, which reversed my steady path to becoming a first year university dropout and sparked a new love for learning. My own customised learning style helped me to ace all my exams, obtain a private scholarship and win the Sony book prize for the best honour year project for my cohort.
Since graduating from NTU, I have lived abroad for over 10 years and have maxed out 3 passports travelling the world both for work and pleasure. My last job gave me the opportunity as head of the Regional IT team in Asia to help set up new operations in various markets and participate in multi-million dollar acquisitions among other interesting projects.
Since I’ve left the corporate world and have started an education technology company in Singapore called Flying Cape. I’m fuelled by the passion to live my life with meaning and significance.
“Live, love, learn and then leave a legacy” -Stephen Covey
What excites you most about your industry?
Singapore is a nation whose resource is its people. Each year, the Singapore government invests heavily in the education sector and apart from providing education as a public good, the nation also has the vision to transform itself into a global education hub. The opportunities to help play a meaningful and significant part in private sector education excites me.
What’s your connection to Asia?
This is where I call home. I have lived in several countries in Asia for an extended period of
time and will always appreciate both the similarities and vast differences of the cultures in Asia.
Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
Singapore! Singapore is truly a melting pot of different cultures. In a single day, you are as likely to meet and do business with locals as well as foreigners from all over the world. There is never a dull moment. Despite the different cultures, we are all safeguarded by a transparent and fair legal safety net.
What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
You will never fail if you keep trying.
Who inspires you?
What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
Being productive is more about energy management than time management.
If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
I think my experiences (mistakes or otherwise) have made me who I am today so honestly I don’t want to change any of that. But I do know that going forward, I want to continue working on being authentic and be very intentional about my priorities.
How do you unwind?
I read. Looking through the lenses of a wise man/woman, transporting yourself to another country or a parallel universe, getting motivation and inspiration from great minds are all possible when you read.
Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
Taiwan. I get bored very easily so I need to be able to get to large cities and remote, scenic areas within a day’s distance and Taiwan has got both in one beautiful country with lovely people.
Everyone in business should read this book:
The One Thing by Gary Keller and Jay Papasan. Want to know how to lead a team, do what’s important for the business and not fail in your private life? Read the book.
Shameless plug for your business Flying Cape:
We are an online booking website for tuition and enrichment lessons, and at the same time a smart recommendations service. The future is all about customized learning, and blazing a unique trail of your own has never been easier – or more uncertain. Flying Cape will help today’s student navigate tomorrow’s career world and help them, to build the skills they need to succeed.
How can people connect with you?
This interview was part of the Callum Connect’s column found on The Asian Entrepreneur:
Callum Laing invests and buys small businesses in a range of industries around Asia. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is the founder & owner of Fitness-Buffet a company delivering employee wellness solutions in 12 countries. He is a Director of, amongst others, Key Person of Influence. A 40 week training program for business owners and executives.