Born and raised in Oakland, California, 25 year old Skylar Saechao has found inspiration in his heritage to forge his own path in business, creating a platform to share not only his story, but that of his ancestors. He’s here with us today to give some insight into his inspiring journey navigating the world of entrepreneurship while honouring his roots.
So Skylar, let’s start with a little bit of background before we dive into your inspirational story. Can you tell us about your family’s roots?
Our last name, Saechao comes from an indigenous tribe in the mountains of Thailand. We actually have 12 native tribes with our last name, which are the prefix of SAE. There are 12 different clans. Our people were put into concentration camps and suffered a lot. We came here during the Vietnam war and were from refugee camps. Knowing my history is one of the reasons that I feel compelled to tell my story, to keep our ancestry alive and remembered.
That is a very profound reason to build your success. Can you share the other reasons you were first inspired to become an entrepreneur?
It was a lack of individuals that are role models showing us the best way. Growing up, there were a lot of drug dealers where I lived, a lot of gang members. It was either grow up and get quick money on the streets or get a menial job and have a typical nine to five. Pretty miserable options. Seeing both those paths I thought, ‘there has to be some other way out’. It is what brought me to IM Academy.
Now that you are on the path to financial freedom, tell us about the concept of your business.
Our business concept is to create a culture around each entrepreneur to help them succeed. When I began my journey, I was all alone. I didn’t know the basics of entrepreneurship, like how to get started and what to do. IM Academy really opened my mindset to network marketing and how to get out of my comfort zone.
Can you expand on how your business helps people?
So our business actually opens up peoples’ mindsets and shifts their paradigms. If I didn’t have my mentors showing me that there was a different way out of the hardships I was in, I would be stuck in the same paradigm as I was a year ago. That was very touching for me. I knew I could also help other people change their mindsets and grow into better versions of themselves.
You really want to help people succeed. Tell us your goals both personally and for the future of your business?
I want to help people grow in my community, because a lot of my friends from high school, they’re still working retail jobs after college. Especially for some of my friends, who I know are still drug dealing. I’m not ashamed to say I did it too because my environment taught me how. But now that I have learned a better way, I want to show those who are struggling that there are other ways to make it. All you need is a phone and a willingness to learn this life-changing skill, and you can earn an income That is going to change the whole culture.
We can see how much pride you have in your lineage, it’s amazing to see. So tell us, what kind of adversities you faced growing up?
I think the biggest adversity for me was not having a fatherly figure in my life. My biological father wasn’t there. I would barely see him, and on my birthdays or holidays he would just drop off presents and leave. Not having that masculine father figure, I had to be the oldest child and the firstborn son.
I always had to set an example and be the one to try and find all the different ways to succeed through many trials and errors. I had to do that for the family. We were facing three to four generational curses and burdens that we carry on our shoulders from our past ancestors. It made me realize that I have to do this for more than just myself. It’s my whole community, my whole ancestral line, my tribal last name. It is a very heavy load to carry.
Thank you for sharing your story Skylar. In closing, can you share some advice for an aspiring entrepreneur?
The first thing is to never let somebody that is not paying your bills determine what you do with your life. A lot of people will have opinions about what you should be doing but not a lot of people will help you get there.
The next one is to reprogram yourself. Your mind is going to free you from the trappings of your negative thoughts, you just have to allow that to happen.
Finally, be the best version of yourself, stay consistent and keep working on improving who you are. These three things are crucial for entrepreneurs starting up in a business.