Story of the Shift: Sydney Wong

Episode 42

I am really excited to welcome in Sydney Wong. She is a woman in tech. Not just any woman, but a woman who works with getting tech companies off the ground. Her journey gets going right off the bat with getting fired. I will let you listen to that story but know that sometimes, doing your best for someone else will not get you where you think it will. I love how she talked about how you can’t know what you don’t know. Such a small phrase, what a big concept. I will let Sydney take it away for the rest of her introduction.

After graduating from McGill, I did a Master’s in Paris at a school called ESEC in International Marketing. I came back to Montreal, worked in online marketing and web marketing since then. Those were booming industries back in 2009 when I started. I actually did my internship at Ogilvy and Mathers, which is one of the biggest advertising firms in the world. Technology was moving fast at the time and it was the only place where innovation was taking off like crazy.

A friend from San Francisco said if I was serious about tech and startup, I should move to Silicon Valley. I bought a one-way ticket the very next week. I attended every MeetUp event, visited the Yahoo campus, and met as many people in different sectors as possible. I met young, confident entrepreneurs who struggled through many obstacles to get to where they needed to be in order to compete. Every Uber driver, every dog walker on WAG, and every house cleaner on TaskRabbit knew the direction they wanted to go; they didn’t shy from sharing their ambitions to strangers. I understood a bit better what “startup” means to this assertive culture and something changed inside of me. I had the opportunity to see people and places that others overlooked for decades. The startup industry is like a battlefield with few winners but the opportunity I saw and built my company mission around was “What would it take to produce more winners?” When I returned to Canada, I wanted to bring that kind of startup structure and energy to benefit Canadian Entrepreneurs. That is how VenturX was born. VenturX is a platform that prepares startups for funding in these innovative ways.