Enrich with Tech Entrepreneurship Wisdom and Life Advice — Meet with Carman Chan, Founder of Click Ventures
Sometimes the most meaningful and inspiring conversations happen over casual meals. The Time Auction Blog is a snippet of our meetings with people who have found passion in their lives and career.
Although many things are at halt due to the pandemic, this doesn’t stop us from making connections and sharing stories. At Time Auction Hong Kong, we’ve once again taken advantage of Zoom to connect with Carman Chan, the Founder of Click Ventures, to share with us her journey beginning as a serial entrepreneur to present venture capitalist.
Meet Carman Chan!
Carman was named one of the top 5 women to watch in Asia Tech (Nikkei Asian Review). Her passion for the technology industry and entrepreneurship began as early as her university years when the Internet was emerging. She had multiple successful exits as an entrepreneur before creating her new angel fund, Click Ventures.
With a focus on providing seed to series A financing to technology startups, Click Ventures is differentiated by offering mentorship from entrepreneurs with over twenty years of first-hand experience. Click’s profile includes more than 50 investments including Spotify.com, Docusign, Palantir.com, and more. It was also named the Most Consistently Top Performing Venture Capital Fund Managers by Preqin in 2019 with all three funds in the top quartile!
Carman frequently speaks and serves as a panel member at prestigious events around the world. She is also a best-selling author for several accelerated learning books, and was a tech columnist for various IT magazines for 8 years.
🧘🏻♀️ Breathe in…Breathe out…
“When life gives you lemon, make lemonade.” This popular saying reminds people to keep a positive attitude despite facing challenges. One of the keys to Carman’s success is her ability to de-stress, clear her mind and sustain her energy level through activities such as swimming or practicing yoga, which often gave her a sense of calmness before her meetings with investors.
“Find a way to discipline yourself to clear your mind and keep your energy level up.”
Carman lives a busy life and spends lots of time traveling. So what would Carman do when a swimming pool is unavailable for her to de-stress, or when she is unable to travel with a yoga mat to practice on? She went on Youtube and discovered a new form of standing yoga that allows her to practice yoga wherever and whenever she wants. This quick 20-minute yoga is believed to instill positivity according to a Harvard scholar, and Carman personally attests to its ability to mitigate jet lag.
This kind of resilience is a very important lesson for us to takeaway. She hopes everyone can find their own way to recharge and reboot; do anything your heart desires.
“The younger generation needs a methodology to reboot and refresh — it doesn’t have to be meditation, it can be listening to music, or even hiking.”
😯 The Unexpected
Carman exhibited her calm and composed nature when we threw an unconventional question her way: If she were to design a billboard for the whole world to see, what would it say?
After some serious consideration, she walked us through her analysis. She thought, since it is a public billboard, she will avoid anything too personal, so that leaves commercial content. She decided on spotlighting Click Ventures by displaying photos of all the portfolio founders.
“I put in a lot of time to communicate with new start-ups.”
Carman’s passion for her work permeates her life, even in hypothetical decisions she has to make. Additionally, her professionalism extends beyond her work into her everyday life, even when faced with trivial matters. Carman has obviously led a very successful career, but how does she maintain work-life balance?
Carman has two children, who she referred to as her most worthwhile investments resulting in the biggest payoff. However, she acknowledged that as a working female with children, it was very demanding to balance being a mom and being a work woman. Nonetheless, she is confident that working moms with similar experience will naturally “level-up” and become a “Superhuman”.
Another thing that keeps Carman moving forward and persevere is the sense of community and long-lasting impact she was able to build over the years. She shared a story about a past project from more than ten years ago, a virtual world called 131UU. At that time, there were 3 million registrations when it launched; but the passing of an investor forced her to close several gateways, and eventually terminated the project to pivot to something else.
“I can’t believe those children still remember 131UU; what a surprise to find out they kept in touch through WeChat more than 10 years later!”
Turns out, the children who initially used 131UU remembers it until this day, and they formed a WeChat group to reconnect with users, share their past encounters, and reflect on lessons learned. This is a testament to the continuing impact Carman has within the community.