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Q&A: Entrepreneur’s favorite virtue is eternal optimism


Chambers Family Entrepreneurial Lectureship is March 16

Jonn Kim, founder and CEO of Geeks and Nerds Corporation (GaN) in Huntsville, Alabama, will deliver the School of Engineering’s Spring 2015 Chambers Family Entrepreneurial Lectureship at 4:10 p.m. Monday, March 16, in Jacobs Believed In Me Auditorium, Featheringill Hall 134. A reception will follow in Adams Atrium. Read Kim’s bio here.

To discover more about the speaker and his lecture – Life Entrepreneurship – Kim answered five questions:

What is your favorite virtue of a life entrepreneur?

Eternal optimism!

Jonn Kim in GaN's Huntsville headquarters.

To be successful as an entrepreneur, one must believe in the mission of one’s own enterprise. This belief is the fuel of the entrepreneurship to overcome difficult challenges. Eternal optimism maintains the individual on the right track through peaks and valleys, and deliberate actions, when combined with eternal optimism, guarantees a success in the journey as an entrepreneur.

Who are your heroes – entrepreneurs or others?

I probably have hundreds of people whose traits I respect and admire.

All of these people are my heroes not because of their super talents, but because of their dedication to overcome human frailty and to become successful life entrepreneurs in their respective life missions. Some are simply brilliantly gifted, but the most have overcome many hardships through dedication and compassion while exhibiting class and wit.

Here are some qualities I respect from my heroes:
– Lincoln’s honesty
– Disney’s zeal
– Mozart’s musical wit
– Federer’s uncanny timing
– Jane Goodall’s compassion
– Nick Offerman’s comedic candor
– And, of course, Einstein’s hair.

I also believe that we need to respect the talent and dedication of all humans, but we should not necessarily put any individual on pedestals.

What are your favorite qualities in a person?

I don’t think I can list favorite qualities. I tend to be attracted to an overall harmony of a person (perhaps an aura) rather than distinct qualities.

In the past, I have listed my favorite qualities in a person to be: Intelligence, creativity, honesty, dedication, compassion, and a sense of humor.

Even though my favorite qualities in a person are too numerous and vague, with certainty I can list my least favorite qualities in a person: insincerity and lack of passion.

What are your chief characteristics as an entrepreneur?

Randomness and Willingness.

I don’t think I am random, but others think that my ideas are often random. My friend of 30 years often blurts out laughing and says, “Wha??? Wait a minute….”

I’m willing to explore “random” ideas just because these random things don’t seem so random to me. All this so-called randomness and my willingness for exploration allowed my ventures to be personal and meaningful.

All these questions are so tough, by the way.

What is your favorite motto?

All you need in life are two toes and some water!

This is my own. I suppose I will have to discuss this during my session.

Contact:
Brenda Ellis, (615) 343-6314
Brenda.Ellis@Vanderbilt.edu
Twitter @VUEngineering

Dr. Jonnathan H. Kim is the founder and CEO of Geeks and Nerds (GaN) Corporation, which provides solutions to customers through professional services and innovative products. His company has been recognized locally and nationally, and the awards include Huntsville Technology of the Year, U.S. Chamber of Commerce Blue Ribbon Award for 100 Best Small Businesses in the U.S., Inc 500/5000, and the Better Business Bureau Torch Business Ethics Award.

He received a Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering from Vanderbilt, and BS/MS from the University of Alabama in Huntsville. He holds four patents and has received numerous professional awards including the Russell Brown Executive of the Year, IEEE Professional of the Year, University of Alabama-Huntsville Alumni Achievement Award, and Huntsville Association of Technical Societies Professional of the Year.

He is actively involved with other entrepreneurs and is currently serving as a board member and an advisor of two technology start-up companies. He is also the Chairman of Geeks and Nerds Foundation whose focus is to assist future leaders through educational assistance.