From a very young age, I had an obsession with particle physics (no, my career suggestions are not rigged :) and the impact that science has had on the world. I spent my teenage years convinced that I was going to work at CERN, in Geneva, and use my life to discover the ToE (Theory of Everything).
When I was 16, my mom gave me a book called Think and Grow Rich, by Napoleon Hill. That book completely changed the direction of my life. I became convinced that the mind, not your external world, was the single greatest influencer on whether you would become successful or not. It sounds silly because it is so obvious - but I had never realized that I was in control of my own destiny before that point. And I'm very convinced that most other people don't realize this. They don't realize that life is but a series of choices you make. I was raised to believe that life simply happened to you, and you just fit in wherever luck took you.
With this new realization, I became obsessed with optimizing my mind for success. Success for what, you may ask. I didn't know then, and I probably don't know now. But I had a hunch (thanks to the help of my family) that it had to do with business. And so I started reading a lot more about business and how entrepreneurs became successful. You will notice that books, and reading, are a huge theme throughout my story.
After a ton of reading, I knew that my path in life was going to be in the form of starting a business. I had no idea what that business was going to be in, but I knew that I wanted to start one. (not usually a good idea, but a naive one at the time that caused me to keep learning).
Corporations, as much as common media vilifies them, are the single greatest way to bring people together to achieve a common goal. And so, I see starting a company as simply a vehicle for achieving goals with a set of people who have a similar vision. The economic relationship is a convenient way of rewarding people for being successful within a capitalistic system.
The idea for Sokanu came from my grade 12 year in high school. Around the time that everyone was applying to university, I became really curious as to why people were making the decisions that they did. It turned out that a large majority of my class ended up taking very similar degrees at the same university, all for the wrong reasons.
I realized that most people make career decisions not based off of internal drivings or intuition, but rather based off bias from other people. We are influenced through peers, parents, teachers and guidance counselors. Each of these parties has their own unique perspective on the world, and smashed together - this is how most people interpret their life. Is this wrong? No - but very often it is not right for optimizing for a career meant for YOU.
Sokanu was born out of that thought. It was originally a thought about connecting like-minded individuals on their path to success, but I quickly realized (through the help of others) that this was extremely limiting, and didn't solve the problem at all. My mom helped guide the direction of the company towards helping people find what they were meant to do on this planet - and building an entire system optimized for them. This is now the central premise behind Sokanu.
As I started to read more books on neuroscience, philosophy and psychology, I became more and more fascinated with the concept of human optimization &amp;amp; development. We, as a species, are terribly unoptimized. The idea that we make poor decisions when it comes to major areas of life like: health, relationships, location, careers &amp;amp; spirituality started to fascinate me. And it is with this that I spend the majority of my time focused on understanding (measuring) people better in order to help optimize them. I believe this is a problem that will take a lifetime to solve and is one worth solving. For the first time in human history, we will have the ability to start to live a life based on uniqueness, rather than based on rote industrialization. This will represent a massive shift in how we make every major decision in our life. Optimization, in my opinion, will become more and more important.
All of this ties back to why we build Sokanu. We are not just a careers company, we are a human development company. We believe that careers are potentially the most important part of most people's (in the developed world) lives. Nearly everyone has to work at some point, and 85%+ of people are unhappy with the work that they do. There needs to be a fundamental shift in how we choose &amp;amp; enter a career. Sokanu was built and is constantly trying to solve that problem. We have a long way to go.
Our goal at Sokanu is to help you find your True Calling. I hope this story helps explain how I found mine.