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Mandy Ho

Mandy Ho

Introduce yourself to our audience. Tell us who you are and what you are currently focused on.

I had a successful career as a finance professional, but my work-life balance was completely out of whack. My job was my life, but I didn’t think it mattered to the world. I wanted to focus on meaningful work that makes me excited to get out of bed, but I didn’t have time or energy to do that. The bigger problem was that I didn’t know what my passion was. In the process of finding balance and creating my meaningful work, it became my mission to help others do the same. Success is living a life that you’re passionate about and makes you excited to get up in the morning. I currently work one-on-one with passionate professionals to empower them to focus on their meaningful work without losing a sense of balance. 

How would you define your professional mission?

I’m passionate about passion, and that’s my mission! I empower women to bring their passion to life, no matter what it is. A lot of people start the conversation by saying “that’s not possible.” Our mind is so powerful that it shuts down the possibilities before we even had a chance to think about them. My mission is to create possibilities for women to dream outside of their perceived limitations, make their passion a reality, and change the way we think and live, one life at a time. 

What project have you worked on that you’re most proud of? Why?

I’m the most proud of the possibilities my clients have created for themselves. One of my clients started off being miserable in her job, working 60-80 hours a week. She couldn’t see any possibilities of how that could change. Like most people, she thought the only options were to quit or suck it up. After working with me, she is now working 20 hours a week, while getting all the full time benefits. This is a big deal because she works for one of the big 4 consulting firms. This is the proof we created together, that anything is possible! Not only is she working part time, she’s now pushing the boundary even further. She’s negotiating to work an average 20 hours a week throughout the year. This means working over time in some months while she can be completely off in other months. What an amazing way to forge her own path! With all the free time, she’s working on bringing her health coaching business to life, years after she got certified. Finally, she’s getting the stability that she wanted, and the flexibility that would allow her to bring her passion to life. 

We’d love to hear more about your career path. What led you to where you are today?

My career path looks chaotic and all over the place. But that's what makes me who I am, and brought me to what I do today. I got my degrees in Biomedical Engineering, but quickly realized that working in a lab wasn't for me, so I looked for a job at any company that would hire me. Being in NYC, I stumbled into a career in finance, moved up the ladder by changing jobs every 2 years. While I was good at what I did in risk management, I knew I would never call it a passion. I stumbled into coaching by doing it at work before knowing anything about it. I tried to start my career coaching business once I got certified. But I didn’t know anything about marketing, so I shut down the business idea and found an even better job in finance. Two years into that job, I was at the same decision point from two years ago! I knew if I kept doing the same thing, I’d keep getting the same result, without knowing what it’d be life to do what I love. It was a wake up call that I couldn't stay in finance forever. I spent the next few years exploring and rediscovering my passion. I was determined to merge my strengths, experience, and the things that I'm most excited about into a business. That’s how I started coaching professionals who aren't completely thrilled with their life or career, to discover what makes them excited to get up in the morning, and make that a reality. 

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

The most rewarding part is seeing people fully loving their lives. People are looking for a specific result, mostly improving their jobs or starting a business. They don't just get the result they think they want working with me, they get the result that is their hearts' desire, their dream come true that they didn't think possible. Once they open their hearts to the possibilities, they start dreaming bigger and living bigger, which is what makes it worthwhile for me. 

What is it about your job that makes you feel it’s the right fit for you?

What makes my work the right fit for me is that I can create the vision and lifestyle that I want. I get the flexibility and freedom. I need to have a lot of discipline for me to get things done. My project management experience helps keep me on track when no one else is holding me accountable. I know this work is right for me because I continue to wake up in the morning feeling excited about what I’m going to do. It’s really that simple for me. If I’m not excited about it, it’s not worth doing.

What is your morning ritual?

I have a daily ritual of meditation with self reiki, and hot tea with lemon and honey throughout the day. It clears me physically and mentally, giving me space to tackle my day.  I also have a weekly ritual of putting everything I need to do on a planner pad, it keeps me organized and helps me stay realistic with my goals. 

What would you say your personal superpower is?

Here are 2 of my superpowers. 1) compassion -- I provide a no judgment zone where people can use me as emotional support, venting, or even confession. 2) My ability to see through the BS that people tell themselves. They can count on me to point out things they’re not seeing, or things that they don’t necessarily want to see about themselves. People love me for that because those are the moments of awareness they want, in order to become the person they truly are. 

What is the best career advice you ever received?

The best advice I’ve ever received, for both life and career, is to do something I love so much that even failing at it would be a thrill. Of course we don’t want to fail, and that’s not the goal. It’s about choosing to do something I love so much that the result of success or failure becomes irrelevant.

Tell us about your favorite Ellevate Network memory or success story. Why are you a member?

Ellevate seemed “big” and overwhelming at first glance. I was introduced to the president of the Phoenix chapter Karen, she was so friendly and went above and beyond to help me. She got on the phone and explained to me about all the membership options, and then put me in touch with the NYC chapter to find out more. After to the local events, it confirmed that this is a place where women help other women thrive, and that’s why I’m member. 

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