Teri Yu // Ep 66 // Crushing Goals and Building Vibely
Welcome to Episode 66 of the Asian Hustle Network Podcast! We are very excited to have Teri Yu on this week's episode.
We interview Asian entrepreneurs around the world to amplify their voices and empower Asians to pursue their dreams and goals. We believe that each person has a message and a unique story from their entrepreneurial journey that they can share with all of us.
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Teri is the founder of Vibely, a seed-staged startup for communities to crush their goals together. Previously, she was an early growth PM at Asana, previously Business Development at Microsoft, Yammer. In 2011, she was a YouTube creator with over 2M views.
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Intro: (00:00:00) Hey guys, welcome to Asian Hustle Network Podcast, My name is Bryan.
And my name is Maggie
And we interview Asian entrepreneurs around the world to amplify their voices and empower Asians to pursue their dreams and goals.
We believe that each person has a message and a unique story from their entrepreneurial journey that they can share with all of us.
Maggie: (00:00:23) Hi, everyone. Welcome to the Asian hustle network podcast. Today, we have a very special guest with us. Her name is Terry. You Terry is the founder of viably, a seed stage startup for communities to crush their goals together previously, she was an early growth PM at a sauna previously, a business development at Microsoft Yammer in 2011. She was a YouTube creator with over 2 million views. Terry, welcome to the show.
Teri: (00:00:52) Thank you. And thanks for inviting me both Maggie and Ryan.
Bryan: (00:55:00) Of course. We’re excited to have you here today. So we’ll hop right into Terry. How did you develop your hustle mindset growing up?
Teri: (00:01:03) That’s a very good question. So I think it might’ve been just seeing my mom growing up. She, you know, came from Taiwan, um, moved to Arizona. Um, she lived here actually by herself for a couple of years before my dad, um, came over. So she was with my brother before I was born. And she’s always been the kind to have this relentless persistent, no matter what was thrown at her, she was always knocking down the walls that were in front of her. So just growing up around that, yeah. The mentality really absorbed in myself as well. Um, and then, you know, going into college, um, there were some entrepreneurial ventures that I hadn’t been tried a bunch of stuff out and then realized that this was really the part of. A business that I was most passionate about. Um, and it kind of leads me to where I am today.
Maggie: (00:01:54) That’s awesome. Wow. That’s amazing. It sounds like your mother had a lot of influence on your mentality and just the way that you grew up. Can you talk about the kind of entrepreneurial stuff that you had worked on while you were growing up?
Teri: (00:02:07) Yeah, so I wish it was when I was like five years old or 12 years old, but it’s more that, um, in college, um, I actually worked on something called. Steam room, which was a Netflix for, um, costumes when rent the runway was having its initial attraction and, uh, reason why I thought it was a good idea was because at USC and you know, the Sprite and like the frappe. Culture is hot. And so there are parties basically every week and it just seemed like a waste of money to get costumes every time. So I was trying to solve that problem. But what I realized was that it was a very operationally heavy business where you have to have inventory of costumes, then you have to ship it out, which I would actually drive to people’s places to do myself. And then you would have to, um, have them return it. Store it somewhere, uh, clean it and then just make sure you manage your numbers correctly. And that was a lot of work for something I ended up not being that passionate about. So my major learning from that experience was next time around work on something that is core to who you are. Um, something you’re truly just waking up every day, thinking about something that would make a huge difference in your personal life and for others around you. Um, so that’s a big motivator of why I started viably.
Bryan: (00:03:26) Wow. That’s awesome. I think you bring up a really good point, too, you know, with entrepreneurship, you always draw on every single experience in your life. W like when you draw out your childhood and your early experiences and all of these factor into your decision making that you make for your current company, you know, the biggest advice here is try different things. Don’t be afraid to fail.
Teri: (00:03:48) Yeah, exactly. Um, and to that point, you know, growing up, I also was very involved in some local communities. So my parents, um, when my dad actually came over, um, to Arizona, stayed with my mom, they were part of something called the townies American association. And that was their second family where my mom became the president. My dad played in the monthly band. This was a big part of how they felt supported being in a state in which they had no friends, no family. And so, um, that was a big part of my childhood as well, where I grew up around all these people who were there for me at any point in time when I was struggling with anything. And so, um, we are now in an age today where. No communities means something very different. There isn’t really this sense of like true affiliation on the digital side. And so that’s why, you know, that kind of experience also fed into why this mission matters to me or why, you know, we’ve worked on, uh, badly.
Maggie: (00:04:50) Wow. That’s so amazing. I love how you touched on how your, both of your parents were so active in communities. And obviously we’re going to touch on viably in a little bit, how that kind of transfers to community building for you as well. I would love to know like, Did your parents have like a specific plan for you? Like did they, were they like tiger parents and that, did they have a plan for you or were they very laid back and had I gave you that flexibility to do what you wanted to do?
Teri: (00:05:18) My parents are the most tiger parents possibly imagine. So they’re the kind of parents that would assign me homework. Growing up when I had no homework, like they would give me math exercises. I’m sure you guys experienced this too. Actually, I spent literally the whole day, uh, quote unquote, doing homework. And so, um, you know, I actually lost motivation at many points because it would just keep assigning me more and more if I finished it. So I would just sometimes sit there and like, think about life. I think that gave me a chance to like, be more creative during that time too, instead of just. Always executing. Um, but you know, that really shaped me in the sense that, you know, um, I continue to like work hard after you, they, you know, even going into college and having, you know, there was a fun time around that point, but, um, yeah, it was part of my DNA to kind of like, keep, keep hustling after. Um, and then yeah, for entrepreneurship, it’s something that my parents. I think ours at the core limbs, like kind of supportive, but there’s a lot more, um, yeah, there’s a lot of energy to like me working at the big company culture. Like my mom tells people that I work at, you know, my, that I’ve worked at Microsoft that, you know, I, um, she sometimes has the story in her head that I work at Google, which is, and so she obviously really wants to be proud. Yeah that way. And that’s the traditional way that your Asian parents will try to push you. But as I, you know, accomplish more and more with the company, I think they’re starting to open their eyes a bit and see that, you know, there definitely is something that we’re onto something. And, um, there’s a lot of like difference that we can make in the world. And it’s not just about, you know, checking the boxes and the feeds and all that stuff.
Bryan: (00:07:10) I love that hotel a lot, you know, and that’s the thing with Asian parents too. It’s like, they’re always really skeptical at first. But until you prove that this is viable and this is possible, there’ll be the leader. Number one supporter.
Teri: (00:07:24) Yeah, that’s true. They have been more supportive than I’m sure a lot of Asian parents could be. So I am thankful for them and like how, like their ability to bring me up in this environment did allow me to pursue the American dream. So a lot goes back to them too.
Bryan: (00:07:42) Yeah. I mean, shout out to your parents and we all see you raise a fantastic daughter and perhaps
Teri: (00:07:50) really, and Tommy for listening.
Bryan: (00:07:54) Yeah. Do you want to switch over into my belly, you know, right. Making that transition and you know, we listened to your previous podcast too last year. And the amount of growth that he made from January, 2020 to March right now that the signing of the report in this podcast is, is tremendous. You know, can you talk a little more about your transition from working in tech to be known now creating your own company and becoming CEO?
Teri: (00:08:19) Yeah. Yeah. Um, does everyone already know it or should I just keep the listeners what? Five liters. Okay. Great context. As I talked through it. So, um, a Bible, we would leave that tax should empower us, not define us. And so we started with this mission of. Changing the social media landscape in a way that we could be able to meaningful and enriching interactions between communities and really feel like the experience that I just touched on. Um, you know, growing up in tight knit, local communities. Um, so bodily is a way for positive and safe communities to crush their goals together. Typically, we partner with content creators to transform their audience into these vibrant communities that cheer each other on support each other. Um, the mechanics in the platform look like. Group chat, where people are doing Q and a, you know, sharing their experiences, getting advice. And then there’s also this idea of accepting and tapping challenges together, um, in which people submit photos and videos of them doing the activity. So for example, where we partner with love and dare who’s the podcast. I think he listened to last time. Um, he has 40 she’s leading a 40 day liberation create a challenge right now, which is a meditation. Um, challenge and then like Rowena Thai. Who’s another creator on her platform. She has 520,000 YouTube subscribers. She is doing a mindfulness challenges with, um, digital worksheets. So it’s just everyone coming together, synchronously doing an activity, getting feedback as well as becoming better. Friends in the community because of that. Um, so that’s kind of what my book is.
Maggie: (00:09:56) That’s awesome. I love how your face just lit up when we asked about you’re talking about by way, but it just goes to show how much passion you have for the company. No, by women, non gamer needs. Uh, the name.
Teri: (00:10:17) Yeah. Oh, good question. Um, so originally we were thinking about good vibes. That was really a core tenant of what these communities should encompass. Um, so, you know, three iterations of, um, different names. We picked a couple tested it amongst, um, users on like mechanical Turk. Um, and then saw there was a more positive reception towards this day. Um, gave people the feeling of like fun and positivity. And so that’s, that’s uh, what we landed on. Yeah. Yeah. Well, good. I’m glad sometimes they weigh, so I’m like, Hmm. Maybe it has some connotations potentially is going away. So, but yeah, I’m glad that we did have mostly that impression.
Maggie: (00:11:08) Awesome. So now that we know what vibe is, you know, like Brian said, talk about that experience. Just jumping from your tech job, to being a CEO,
Bryan: (00:11:18) that a huge transition. Yeah. All of us are always curious about by some lessons. Are not willing to make that jump. So we want to hear about that experience.
Maggie: (00:11:27) No. If you were like already thinking about starting a company while you were at a sauna and what was the timeframe between a sauna to starting Hively? Yeah.
Teri: (00:11:36) Yeah. So when I was working at a Sano, um, I think I always had this, this, uh, hustle in me to want to create a company and start something and make an impact so that I didn’t know when the right time was because, um, I wanted to, it to be something that I actually cared about, um, because it’s such a long journey, you know, you have to select something that actually makes, um, like something you can continue getting energy from. Um, and then I also wanted experience because I figured the more that I had, um, an understanding of product development growth, especially if this was kind of like, whereas brewing that I would be able to execute and really, um, do it, uh, in an efficient way instead of having to sometimes learn along the way. Um, so, um, I think a year into a sauna, um, I started really thinking about like how tech is. I’m in a place where I don’t like, so the AB testing framework that you see in a lot of these tech companies, um, you know, forces, it’s kind of like addictive screen-time experience where we get, um, more and more socially empty and lonely as we use it. Um, and I wanted to create a like real empowering sort of tag where. Um, it helps you be more inspired, happier, like you have more meaningful enriching experiences because of the pet tech itself. So we S I S when I quit a sauna, um, I already had this mission core to me in mind. And then after, you know, testing around some concepts, um, we started bringing like online Facebook groups offline as a way to make this happen. So we thought face-to-face would be an amazing way to give people that support system. Um, and then ultimately, uh, we found that a lot of these influencers or personalities would be the ones leading these super engaging communities, just like you guys for, um, Um, Asian hustle network. So, um, then we wanted to really help them curate their community in a way that made, uh, rewarded them that gave a lot of intimacy towards the community. Um, and then continue to service the mission.
Bryan: (00:13:52) I love that. I love how community focus you are with your company went by to out of curiosity, like where you trying to solve a personal issue that you found dealt with throughout your content creation career early on. That’s how you found your passion for this project?
Teri: (00:14:09) Yeah. So the content creator experience I had in 2011, definitely fed into this. Right. So my channel is actually for my dog embarrassing. Um, but she had, she was a clique high, which was a new arboreta at that time. It’s known as a mini Husky, but, um, a lot of people would watch and look to me as the like subject matter expert.And so they would always ask the same question. It was like, how big is your dog gonna get, what size is she? How do I treat this separation anxiety? Um, what color should I get? And so it was getting to the point where it was not just comments, but I had so many inbox messages around the same kind of question. So it just showed me how unscalable it can be to be the primary point person. And the only relationship that the viewers have. And so there’s just so much more potential when the creator can actually be a new way, like a real community leader that brings and rallies people together, similar to like the Pope to the Catholic church or a president to a school where it’s a real intimate community led by someone.
Maggie: (00:15:20) Wow. I love that. Yeah. I love how you were able to take what you’ve experienced and learned through your content creation days and really build out viably to what it is today. Um, when you were just starting viably, what was your marketing strategy like? And how heavily did you rely on, you know, just word of mouth.
Teri: (00:15:41) Good question. So it was very experimental at first. So my background is growth, right? So I’d like to validate a lot of the ideas before going down a path. Um, what was the, uh, common theme was just the mission that we had around empowering, um, positive and meaningful experiences. But we had to, with a lot of different concepts at first, it was like our first wedge. It was like uniting solo travelers. It was like, you know, helping Facebook groups. Then it was like the influencers powering the, um, communities. And so, um, when I had spoken to Lavandera last year, Yeah. Um, that was when we were already on the path of influencers, creating these meaningful communities under their brand. And so, um, you know, things have changed even since then, cause it’s always an evolving journey. So COVID wiped out all the offline activities that these influencers could do with their communities. And so we really reestablished and focused on creating that intimacy online, um, through the challenges through the synchronous activities, um, and saw that as a. You know, we basically had fortune X grows to the pandemic as a result. So kind of always have to be keeping your eyes open and shifting and learning and executing and getting back up. But things push you down.
Bryan: (00:16:58) I like that a lot. And that’s so I think you mean he’s kind of like brushing her so quickly mothers so much to unpack, you know, it’s like signs of a strong entrepreneur, especially in a fast changing environment like Bible or any startup that you’re a part of. You always have to keep an eye out for trends, opportunities, and what’s going on in the world. You know, that’s how you, let’s say you stay ahead of the curve and continue building a vibrant culture. But my next question is. No. W what’s the environment constantly changing? How do you focus your company on one thing at a time? Because there’s so many things that comes their way. There’s so many ways to pivot, right? You have your team, you have your advisors, they all say different things. How do you as Terry to CEO decide what to focus on?
Teri: (00:17:42) Yeah. So this is. A very hard skill because you have so many different stakeholders, you have your investors, you have your team, you have for us, we have our creators, we also have the members. Um, and so as the person who’s like corralling all this, you have to zoom out to constantly take a look at, you know, all the different priorities. Um, oftentimes I’ll analyze like impact. Over cost. Um, that helps me decide which opportunities are worth pursuing versus not. Um, but sometimes it’s just got to where your instincts and your, um, your, uh, the feedback that you’re getting from people has to be part of that, like decision-making process, right? Um, so it’s, you know, not perfect of course, like there’s no science to it. Um, but you can often validate before you act. So I kind of touched on this earlier, but the entire growth process of at least a tech company, you do need to be very experimental. You need to try things. Often times I will try to, um, like bring up a landing page or bring up a Facebook ad. So kind of validate or invalidate my assumptions before going deeper down a path and then spending engineering resources, um, on something. Um, so that helps to mitigate the risk.
Bryan: (00:18:59) Yeah. That’s, that’s awesome to hear about your strategic thinking and the way you make decisions. I think that’s very. Um, inspirational for a lot of us to kind of listen to you. And I kind of want, I’m kind of, I don’t want to focus on you as a female founder, too. Like what kind of struggles have you faced? Especially in a very male dominated. Industry like tech and VC, like yeah.
Maggie: (00:19:23) Yeah. And there’s, you know, statistics everywhere that shows a very little percentage of, you know, venture capital funding goes to women, led companies. And I know you also lead viably with another female entrepreneur as well, so it would love to know any challenges.
Teri: (00:19:38) Yeah. Yeah. And on top of that, uh, during the pandemic. Any kind of progress you made for female funding collapsed to like 2017 levels. So yeah, definitely, always a struggle for the female aspect of it. But, um, for me personally, I think I started at a time where at least the industry was already aware of the biases against females. Um, so I didn’t encounter as much. Like sexual harassment or discrimination. Um, however, there are so many implicit biases that we as humans just don’t even know we have. Um, so when it comes to things like fundraising, um, there were times when I would encounter people who would take me less seriously, who knows why maybe it was, I was female. Maybe it’s because I’m Asian or maybe I just don’t present myself that well, who knows. But, um, either way, you know, having. That extra unknown about you makes it just like a tad bit harder. Um, but that doesn’t mean you can’t overcome it. Right? So like we had our pre-seed round early on. We had awesome backers, like it’s team Chan, co-founded YouTube, Scott co-founder meetup. Um, and then Tana the advisor he tried. And so there were early believers. And what we were doing, um, even before the concept of the creator economy got really hot. And so, um, that was, you know, just having fun other people who really believe in you and, um, understand where your business is going. And the, the general industry really propels you past any kind of challenges. Um, and so, uh, we kind of, you mentioned this, but we just closed a, um, oversubscribed. Seed round as well. Um, and it was over 2 million, so that’s something that regulations thank you. Um, and we have with the world’s best investors behind us. So, um, I couldn’t be more grateful for the opportunities that we have today. Um, but it did take a lot of like hard work and overcoming, um, any challenges that were thrown at us.
Maggie: (00:21:41) Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. I read about, um, the seed financing and tech crunch. So congratulations on that. Um, I love to know like what that process was like while you were fundraising as like a first time founder.
Bryan: (00:21:53) No, the hustle. I don’t think that a lot of us can understand what you went through to hustle for that time. Yeah.
Teri: (00:22:01) Yeah. Um, so I think startup raising as a concept, it’s very, it’s like this game. Where I think it’s a lot less about merit than you would expect, because there’s a lot of optics that feed into it. Everyone wants to invest in what everyone else wants to invest in. And so you really have to, um, no matter how you’re feeling about it, you really have to put on a strong face, put it on your business. Do I mean, not literally, but you know, mentally, um, and really, um, portray yourself in the best possible light. Um, that is. Um, unfortunately held, uh, fundraising, at least in San Francisco, it works. Um, but the like entire journey itself of like fundraising was very exciting at the same time, because you meet so many people who are, you know, either well known in their industry or are good growth minds or consumer minds. And for us, you know, it gave us. All his free feedback on the strategies that we had and as always, you know who to listen to and who to not, you can kind of take that all in and, um, encompass a better strategy or group over time. So, yeah, I’m, I’m great. I think it was, it was definitely stressful in the sense that like it’s never, um, nothing like that is ever that easy, but it is really awesome too, because. You know, now we have, um, even better in masters narrative that asks for
Bryan: (00:23:24) you did a Terry, well, you did the first part, but just the beginning of something even greater, you know? So we’re always cheering you on. Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. I appreciate that. Focus on, you know, on you on like, how do you take care of yourself? Because you know, there’s a lot of stress that goes into running a company. You’re probably waking up thinking about this 24 seven. Right. When is Teri time? Like when did, when do you like wind down and like, okay, I’m not going to answer any emails because as entrepreneurs so easy to like, Oh, I can handle that. It’s like five minutes, you know, and five minute eats intern are emailing you go down, you go down like a deep rabbit hole. So how do you set boundaries for yourself as, as entrepreneur?
Maggie: (00:24:06) Yeah. And do you follow any like routines or habits, healthy habits that you picked up on?
Teri: (00:24:11) I’m going to be honest with you. I work a lot. I’m not sure I have a good sense of boundaries. I think even in our early stage of a company, you kind of have to throw yourself in it. However, I recognize that it’s not just about time spent. It’s also about your own productivity. Um, but in theory, if you’re productive and you spent a lot of time, the more you can accomplish for a company. So. For me, I try, I have my rituals that I found over time that I worked, which I can get into, but I’m still figuring out what is the right line. Um, because unfortunately, if you don’t work on the company, like no one else is going to really be as passionate as the founders. And so you have to be always thinking about it. Um, So getting into more like the self-care zone. I know what I do. I don’t know if everyone should learn for me, particularly for self care, but, um, I do tend to have these sources of energy that I can always reach that back to. So sometimes that’s a significant other, that’s my best friend Vivian, or that, um, you know, a show or a podcast that might make me feel inspired. Um, so sometimes, you know, when I’m feeling down. Um, I’ll watch something as dramatic and sensational as shark tank, because that gives me like this view back to appreciate the opportunity that’s in front of me. Um, sometimes if it’s a playlist. So if it’s, you know, I have this music that reminds me of when I was a child and when life was simpler, you know, I’ll listen to that. Um, so still the songs, you know, when I was in high school, that kind of thing. Um, um, so that source of energy will often bring me up. And then I have things that I know bring me down, but I tried to cut out. Um, and this is requires a lot of like self-awareness, but, um, if there’s a particular, uh, issue or a system systemic. Um, problem with like process or something like that, like solving it and actually taking action on it faster helps me better. Um, so I try to redirect any kind of like negative energy towards action. And then that has helped me overcome a lot of the hardship.
Bryan: (00:26:33) Yeah, I really, I really appreciate that. And I’m also very much the same way. It’s like anytime negative stuff, I’m just going to do my work just because you feel better.
Teri: (00:26:44) Totally. To be careful of it. Sometimes doing more work, you like actually not progress, you know? So yeah. Do you have to be aware of that? Yeah. You always want to be more can something meaningful. Right.
Maggie: (00:26:57) And I love that. You’re being honest with yourself saying that you do work a lot, but at the same time, it seems like you’ve really come to find out, like what keeps you grounded? And that takes a lot of courage. Yeah.
Bryan: (00:27:08) Yeah. We’re still learning boundaries or like, Let’s do it. It’s part of the Asian also, right. We’re slowly realizing more and more how important it is to like take care of yourself first, because if you take care of your mental health, everything will fall into place.
Teri: (00:27:23) Yeah, totally. I think the I’m lucky to work with, um, creators who like practice wellness and self care, like Eileen shoe and Rowena, because like, they teach me a lot of times when, if by watching their videos and they’re seeing their community of like, what are the healthy things to do? Like journal or aiding, like exercise. I’m just trying to force myself to do all those things more and more. So it’s nice to surround yourself with that. Like positivity as well.
Bryan: (00:27:50) The community based effort, like the ally. Yes.
Maggie: (00:27:56) So we listened to your podcast with 11 dear. Um, and you did mention a little bit about rejection therapy and we also interviewed a judge recently, recently rejection on rejection therapy. So I would love to know, like what type of situations do you set up to expose yourself to rejection and what have you learned from it?
Bryan: (00:28:20) What was your mentality? For getting rejected. This sucks it’s going to happen, but he just had a brush, like brush it off. Right, right.
Teri: (00:28:27) It doesn’t even feel like rejections me anymore. I will literally, if I. How’s something I want, I’ll just send out an email. You don’t hear back. I don’t even remember because they send so many. Yeah, I think it’s honestly just practice where it becomes a muscle and you just emphasize it. And then it’s your second nature where you don’t even feel anything when you lift heavy lift anymore. But I don’t think I ever. Went out to like a pizza restaurant and they give me free pizza. Um, early on in high school, I did have jobs where you’d actually go up to people and just ask them to take surveys or do something. Wow. That’s pretty cool. Yeah. Yeah. So, um, I think that one of them I’m thinking of is what used to be a movie survey company where they’d want. Random people in the theater to come to this kiosk and then put in their, um, opinions about a trailer that’s upcoming. And so there was a lot of me just approaching strangers and being like, hello, will you please come and fill out this survey? And, um, that in itself probably pushed me to, um, learn that, you know, if someone’s like, no, I don’t have time not to take it personally. Um, just to keep going. And that it is a numbers game at the end of the day.
Bryan: (00:29:44) Yeah. I really liked that mentality too, because that is very much a part of the hustle. Like you’ll probably encounter a buttload of nos because they say, no, it doesn’t mean your idea’s bad.
Teri: (00:29:54) Yeah, absolutely. Really can’t get anything done. If you’re afraid of rejection, I’m like, it’s just part of it. It’s not even, you should maybe even reframe it. It’s not even a rejection. It’s just moving. You know, you just got to the brush brush. That’d be able to get to where you need to go.
Bryan: (00:30:09) Definitely. I really like your girl mindset. What really shines through the entire podcast, how you mustering things and, you know, the entrepreneurship, entrepreneurship path is really difficult and there’s a lot of highs and lows, you know? Uh, I know you mentioned that when you’re feeling low, you push that into action. So he kind of highlights in the times where you felt the high and how do you continue staying motivated when you’re still fit, feeling really good.
Teri: (00:30:37) So. The highest when I, when I’ve had really amazing moments, you have to consciously grab on to that for a longer number over and over again, that that’s a high moment because it’s so easy to get back into the, uh, whole swirl of bad and not as good and maybe good, but not good enough. And so. Um, I think the way to do that is potentially like writing things down so that you truly internalize it. I do one of them I’ll put things on a sticky note and like put it on my mirror, my computer, just to like, remind me that something good is happening. But yeah, I think as a kind of natural thing of entrepreneurs too. Focus on what else needs to be done? What else do I, you know, and it’s not ideal so that we can get to the next place. So then the next milestone. So yeah, it’s just a constant reversion back to, um, your, your positive, um, your positive placements or what you’ve done, um, to remind yourself to be gracious because it’s actually and treadmill at the end of the day. And you’ll never be happy if you don’t stop and realize that it’s around you is already, there’s so much opportunity, so much privilege so much what we should be grateful for.
Maggie: (00:31:58) Absolutely. Yeah. And Terry, how do you see yourself? Like how have you grown personally since starting this company? I’m sure you’ve went through so much since starting viably, but yeah.
Bryan: (00:32:11) I’m telling your, your tone of voice and where you guys are now in your pocket. Let me see Terry, you know, you see like the. The grit and grind that she has. She’s awesome. She’s so passionate about what she does.
Maggie: (00:32:25) I think like Brian and Terry have kind of met each other before, right. USC. Um, so, you know, I’m sure you’ve grown so much, you know, throughout the years, but I’d love to know like how you personally see yourself have grown throughout the years as well.
Teri: (00:32:46) So I used to have really bad imposter syndrome and I actually forgot, I had that until recently I was talking to some of our teammates and they are, you know, communicating that they had, um, some thoughts in this arena and I realized shit doing viably and actually taking action on my own accord. Salt, a lot of the imposter syndrome that I had when I was working in a company. I think it goes back to like, if you feel like you have personally accomplished something where you feel proud where you’re like, I made it happen. I know that I was like a big force in it. Um, I think you tend to. Then start, stop focusing on like others, impression of your performance, and you start to have full confidence and acceptance of what you’ve done and no one can really take that away from you. So I’ve also, you know, read books a long time ago, go about imposter syndrome and maybe that helped to like share all the, um, different examples. Like even one of our backers, she was a co-founder of a sauna, very successful guy who was like employee number 20 at Facebook. He’s had imposter syndrome growing up as well. So it’s like, I think everyone has it. You have to get to a point where you are. So, um, you’ve accomplished something that you’re proud of and you’re, you’re just comfortable and accepting of your own skills and weaknesses that you stop thinking so much about. Um, this haze that’s surrounding you. Yeah. So that’s, that’s the biggest difference. I, I think, uh, but maybe that’s just top of mind cause some of the conversations going with the team. Yeah,
Bryan: (00:34:22) no worries. Yeah. I mean, I feel like the subject of imposter syndrome will always be there. But it’s that you find tools in ways and community in order to overcome that, you know, it doesn’t matter where you are in life, you’re in a beat. You’re gonna face the situation where you look at yourself and like, Whoa, what am I doing? Why is anyone asking for advice here?
Teri: (00:34:44) Sometimes I have to stop and realize that a lot of people are now looking to me for advice and that I can teach them something it’s actually quite different than, um, where I was before. Um, Yeah. And there’s also different tricks for imposter syndrome where, like, I think there’s a book where it talks about your body language and how yes. Back to your mentality. So if you stand up straight and you put your arms out wide, like it will actually make you feel more confident while you’re talking, which I totally believe in, but I do think there needs to be some like substance where you feel like you actually have done something and they be a part of who you are.
Bryan: (00:35:20) Yeah. Yeah. I really liked that. Summarize, like to overcome imposter syndrome is by. Hmm. I love it.
Maggie: (00:35:30) Yes, absolutely. So what I really love about viably is that it really reminds me of Asian hustle network. Just like. All about community building and I’ve read everywhere that says, you know, viably is like a judgment free zone. How do you ensure that, you know, viably maintains that judgment free zone
Bryan: (00:35:49) maintain their culture. Culture is like one of those, like the hockey words gets thrown around a lot. It’s all about culture, culture, culture. Like no one dies deep into what culture is and how you build culture. Yeah.
Teri: (00:36:02) Yeah, you’re totally right. What you’ve accomplished with Ahn is actually very, it gives me some inspiration on our own when you’re looking at like the Bible communities. Um, most of the communities we attract are these like positive mission-based communities where they’re truly trying to help people grow. And so that tends to attract a demographic that, of like kind and supportive people that aren’t on our platform. We’re very thankful for. Long-term as we scale, um, you know, we’ll continue to be this kindness, but we do have automated tools that check for, um, certain negative actions. Um, judgment is a hard one. I don’t know if we are going to be ever judgment. That is really difficult, more, so we want to be a toll free drum, free zone, and then make me accomplish that is through something we branded as a vibe chat. So that’s our probably Tivity where, you know, if you are bullying, harassing, you are soliciting. Um, there’s a very low bar in which you’ll just get kicked out of the platform entirely, if not, they’ve just removed from the group, but we do leave it up to the communities. They have ambassadors who, um, manage their members and conversation. And then if it’s ever reported up to us globally, we will actually take action on it. Instead of waiting around potentially like parlor or one of those other, like maybe Twitter, a little bit more on the negative side of moderation.
Maggie: (00:37:32) I love that. I love how you’re super transparent about that. And, you know, especially in a time like this, where we just like need more love within communities and everyone, it’s, it’s a really important subject.
Teri: (00:37:47) Talk to me that we do not have already have a place where you can truly go for a source of kindness. Inspiration closes today is maybe. Tech talk, maybe Facebook groups Ahn definitely is that, you know, you guys are, um, diamond in the rough, like it’s so hard to find those kinds of, um, engaging, positive, supportive places. And so ultimately our platform will be the home for all these communities, whether that’s creator communities, Facebook groups, like Ahn has had. Um, or, you know, religions are brands, they’re political parties. Like everyone needs a home. And we were really creating that space where there’s a true affiliation and identity associated with who’s around you.
Bryan: (00:38:34) I love that. I love that. So this is early 2021. What are your goals for the rest of the year and what are your goals are byway first, the year.
Teri: (00:38:42) Oh. Um, my personal goals tend to conflate with my blade a lot. Um, I want to exercise more. Even this podcast reminds me that I was supposed to exercise Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, and I, I am not, I fell out of that recently. Got it. Personal goals. And then, um, vitally, you know, we have already had, uh, over 600 communities last year in 2020. We also had. Um, over 400,000 messages then as well as 37,000 completed challenges. So people are really responding well to it, and we just want to continue growing and scaling and making it rewarding for both content creators and for the community to truly feel like this is a place that can depend on a real support system that they’ll never feel alone. Again.
Maggie: (00:39:33) I love that. Love it. Amazing. So, Terry, we have one last question for you. And that is what one advice can you give to an aspiring entrepreneurs? Female. Female.
Teri: (00:39:48) There’s so much only one. Okay. Okay. To the Terry gets to. Um, those first one is to, should I go for corny or should I go for like, um, maybe when one more like philosophy one and one more tactical, like, okay. So the first one is to believe in yourself and continue to persist and keep going. I think that’s the hardest. They trained to find in people. And if you have that, where you can get yourself off the ground, every time you get beat down, uh, you are going to be the, one of the most tactical people out there, because that is literally the trade that it, you know, takes you from point a to point B nothing else, like smarts or. You know, network and all that can compensate for just your ability to be, um, like resilient. So there’s a lot of mental stamina in there. I just want to encourage people to have, because that’s truly how we got to where we were today. Maybe the second one, that’s a lot more tactical is that you should really, if you have any way to experiment and like measure and create a success criteria around validating your ideas prior, that will help to make sure that you’re on the right path because everyone has ideas. Right. But to know which ones to pursue, um, you can really just focus your time and energy. On the ones that are actually going to get you, um, to, uh, to the company and you to a good place. So I think that’s something that you just learn as more in like the products here, but it’s true for anything. Um, for example, even a CPG product, you might want to just test that with, um, hundred, maybe 500 people before you have a final concept. And that just mitigates the, a lot of the risk that, um, you know, people won’t like it as much and that you just stuck a bunch of money.
Bryan: (00:41:50) I love that. I love this. Just teach you thinking inside of you a lot. And I mentioned that a lot in this podcast already, but I do appreciate that.
Maggie: (00:41:57) Thank you, Terry. And how can our listeners find out more about you and viably online?
Teri: (00:42:03) Uh, so I have a Twitter account now I actually used to never eat, but I’m starting to, um, it’s Terry, the Terry, you at Twitter. And then, uh, I’m an Instagram. I am teriyaki chicken, which I’m still proud of. I got that name and I was like it. I want to say college early college. Um, cool. And yeah, if you were interested in, by Billy itself, the site is byplay.io. Um, so we’re our goal. There is to just help as many community leaders lead, um, more intimate and meaningful communities, so happy to help anyone who needs.
Maggie: (00:42:40) Awesome. Well, thank you so much for being on the show, Terry. It was amazing hearing about your story. Thank you, Terry. I appreciate you.
Teri: (00:42:48) Yeah, of course.
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