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Hackernoon logo"This Pandemic Hasn't Changed the Way I Operate" - Zoe Chew, Product Dev Nom by@noonies

"This Pandemic Hasn't Changed the Way I Operate" - Zoe Chew, Product Dev Nom

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The Tech Industry's Greenest Awards. Public Nominations Are Open. Voting Starts Aug 13.

Zoe Chew from Malaysia has been nominated for a 2020 Noonie in the Future Heroes and Technology categories. As a self-taught programmer and product developer, Zoe Chew has a lot of advice about how to get into the tech industry.

The Noonies are Hacker Noon’s way of getting to know — from a community perspective —  what matters in tech today. So, we asked our Noonie Nominees to tell us. Here’s what Zoe had to share.

1. Tell us a bit about yourself.

👋 I'm Zoe, a product builder in tech. My app has been featured on Product Hunt #1, Lifehacker, & tech blogs in 7 countries. I work with US/APAC startup clients remotely in product, communication & user base discovery strategy. Previously, I started as a digital marketing consultant in paid ads & content. Currently, I'm building NewCo.

2. Tell us about the things you make / write / manage / build.

Things I build:

  • I build & launch ideas into products. I love to solve my own problems through tech and design. For example, I've built a food delivery app, habit tracker, article summarizer, finance tracker, and portfolio tracker. You can view all my work on:

Things I work on:

  • I help early-stage, post-product startup clients globally (US/APAC) in product communication & user base discovery.

Things I write:

  • I run a newsletter that shares toolkits in building startup MVPs and rapid prototyping using nocode tools. I write on Hackernoon, Medium, and Substack.

Things I'm working on/coding:

  • Starting and building a social networking app

3. What are you most excited about right now?

I'm excited about the future of social networking and how we can make human connections deeper, meaningful, and more curated.

4. What are you worried about right now?

I'm worried about not being able to focus or get distracted by the abundance of opportunities that come my way. Learning to prioritize is something I need to keep in mind.

5. What's the most useful advice you've ever given somebody?

The way to get into product/tech is to start by building something...anything. I always share this advice by Sam Altman: "Figure out how to figure it out." Doing is the most direct way of learning.

6. How has the pandemic changed your life and/or career?

I've got a brief history of working remotely, building cross-border connections remotely and closing client projects and businesses from all around the world. This pandemic doesn't change the way I operate in my work. Instead, this pandemic reinforced my belief about the power of building professional connections virtually. It will always open doors to your career, especially as we're shifting to a globally distributed work environment.

7. If we gave you $10 million to invest in one thing right now, where would you put it?

I'll invest in founders who are building something that makes work feel like socializing or simply fun, i.e. creators economy, passion economy, knowledge economy.

8. What's an opinion you have that most people don't agree with?

I think most people will disagree with this: you can start things on your own, i.e. a business, a freelancing career, a product without any prior (or relevant) working experience. You can build your credibility and track record from scratch, if you're willing to put in the work. I never had a full-time job; my first career is my current career as a consultant/contractor. The only difference is I pivoted my marketing work into helping product-related companies and got into the tech industry.

9. What or who are you keeping an eye on in 2020?

I'll keep an eye on the industry trends specifically the overlap of the future of socialization and work.

10. Which apps can't you live without?

I can't live without Notion & Twitter.

11. What are you currently learning?

I'm currently learning product management, Django, JavaScript and tech industry trends across social apps and B2B.

For much the same reasons Hacker Noon decided not to put good ideas behind pop-ups or paywalls — nor abuse your personal data to target you with creepy ads — we also decided that you don’t have to be an influencer or have 50k followers on Twitter to earn the recognition that comes with a 2020 Noonie Nomination.

Make somebody’s day and nominate them to be recognized in the internet’s most independent and community-driven awards: NOONIES.TECH


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