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Q&A

We turn the camera on Unfiltered's Jake Millar

Jake Millar is a 21-­year­-old new-­media and education entrepreneur based in New York City. Jake co­-founded Unfiltered in November 2015 and currently acts as CEO. Unfiltered allows entrepreneurs and business leaders to learn directly from the world’s greatest business minds – so far he’s had Sir Richard Branson and Tesla co-­founder Ian Wright contribute.

Jake will be speaking at the Nurture Change Business Retreat about goal setting and how to create 30-year-plans. 


Q. Who is a leader that you learnt something incredibly valuable from and what was the lesson you learnt from them?

A. Kiwi entrepreneur Eric Watson helped me drive home the importance of having a plan for my life. The importance of this cannot be overemphasized. I personally follow a 30­year plan which allows me to ride through the ups and downs, always knowing that I am driving towards a greater vision. In his Unfiltered interview, Eric said:

“The single most important piece of advice I could give you – and 99% of people do not have this – is have a plan. Sounds pretty basic, but no one has one. So if you don’t have a plan of your own, you’re going to be in someone else’s plan for sure. If you want to have success, and achieve, and are prepared to put the hard work in and take the risks, you need a plan, you need a vision, and you need goals. If you look at yourself in the mirror, and go ‘What is my vision?’ for your business, for your life, whatever it is, and you can’t elaborate on it in a 30-second elevator speech, you haven't got one. If you haven’t got one, like I said, you’ll be in someone else’s. You need to be able to explain to yourself to anyone else who cares to listen, and you should tell as many people as possible your plan and your vision. Once you’ve got that, everything else starts to fall into place.”


Q. What lesson in business do you try to pass on to others and what does it mean to you?

A. Blur the lines between business and personal life. I make a real effort to only do business with my friends, as I generally always make friends with my business connections. My lawyer is my friend. My accountant is my friend. Even my dentist is my friend. Never look at business life as “work” and personal life as “fun” otherwise you’ve already failed. If you’re not having serious fun in business, you should definitely be doing something else, as the stresses of it are so intense!


Q. Who do you think is a great innovator and why?

A. I’ve been really impressed with PwC’s ability to innovate, particularly out of New Zealand and Australia (check out PwC Next). As a giant accounting corporate (with over 200,000 staff!), PwC is heading into unknown territory as tech unicorns threaten to disrupt their core business at every corner. But the way PwC are pulling apart every single aspect of their own business model – and really questioning how they can disrupt themselves – sets a fantastic example for startups and corporates globally.


Q. What has been your biggest learning in business to date and why? How has it affected you going forward?

A. You have to make big, crazy and scary decisions to change the trajectory of your business. Small decisions will only ever make a marginal difference. If you want to literally move the needle of your business, you have to make decisions so bold, and so scary and so uncomfortable, and then back them with unrelenting determination and fearlessness.

Making the decision is always the hardest part. Once you have made the decision, no matter how outrageous it may be, everything else will start to fall into place. Make the decision.

I recently made the decision to move to New York City to expand Unfiltered globally. This was an incredibly scary decision to make and I am still unsure whether we will have success in this market but if I didn’t come over here and give it a crack, there would be no chance. It is worth the risk, especially as I have ensured my downside is protected as much as possible.


Q. If you could do any career you wanted, what would you be and why?

A. I love what I do and despite the stress of it, I wouldn’t be doing anything else! In saying that, I am very keen to do more skydiving and scuba diving, but I can work this around my business ventures!


Q. What are you most excited about in attending the Nurture Change Business Retreat in Fiji?

A. I’m really excited about the opportunity to meet hundreds of other business leaders who are all on a journey of self­ improvement! In business, I believe it’s fundamentally important that we always continue to learn, as this is the only way we can truly grow.

The business leaders attending Nurture Change understand this, and I can’t wait to learn from the fellow speakers and attendees, and make some new friends. Bring on Fiji!

The Nurture Change Business Retreat is for business owners, senior managers and entrepreneurs looking for new ideas, space to think on their business, inspiration, relaxation and connection with others from the business community. The Business Retreat runs November 2 to 6 at the 5-star InterContinental Fiji and features more than 14 incredible speakers across business, health and wellness, plus other activities. Some exciting speaker announcements just released. Almost sold out, get in quick. Details online at www.nurturechange.com

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