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Fireside Chat: Monika Black and Tomer Yogev

As we gear up for the 2019 Young Entrepreneur Convention, we found a few minutes to visit with our Fireside Chat guests to learn more about the insight and experience they are bringing to this year’s convention. Monika Black and Tomer Yogev, founders of corporate coaching firm TandemSpring, are set to sit down “by the fire” with host Ben McDougal to close #YEC19 on Saturday evening.

How did the idea for the company you founded come together?

The idea behind TandemSpring originated from a skydiving experience we did together. We recognized that in the same way as a tandem skydive, we wanted our clients to feel strapped in, secured, with an expert right behind them, but with the knowledge that we were going to push them to do something that they might be afraid of or overwhelmed by.

In the end, though, they were going to touch down safely and be delighted and exhilarated from having the experience. So, between that image, and that Tandem can also be read as T-and-M or Tomer-and-Monika, we jumped all over it, and went from there!

What is the most important lesson you have learned on your entrepreneurial journey?

Only follow the wisdom of those who know the happiness of their own soul. You are your best version of your own leader. It is one thing to listen to and honor the leadership advice from others. But it is even more important to see how it can inform your own sense of self as a leader. Before you follow anyone, you might want to check if their model is even working for them, or if they are just following what someone else once told them to do.

At the end of the day, they are sharing information about who they want to be as a leader. If it is not the same as your model, and it probably isn't, you might want to question just how closely you want to follow.

What is one book that every young entrepreneur should read?

“The Freaks Shall Inherit The Earth” by Chris Brogan. Truly, the future of leadership will require that everyone truly understand their own unique brand and how best they can move through the world with unbridled authenticity, strengths, and joy.

What is the best piece of entrepreneurial advice you have ever gotten?

Genuinely good entrepreneurial advice is few and far between. But, the one concept that we think is pretty good for most any entrepreneur is to remember that “EVERYTHING is the long game." In other words, all the ups and downs of entrepreneurship only matter in aggregate. Your short-term success is only of value if you can turn it into long-term success.

Your short-term failure still has plenty of value if you can learn from it and turn it into long-term success. Bearing this in mind really helps to keep you humble and hungry when things are going well, and to keep you positive and productive when they are not.

What is the primary focus of your presentation at YEC?

How to bring your whole self to the entrepreneurial journey. When you do that, you can hold true to everything you need to ensure that you are taking care of yourself and putting yourself in a position to be your best self.

Your state of mental health is often most informed by how well you are taking care of you. Once you know how to be at the driver's seat of your own bus, it becomes easy - you only need to refuel and once in a while get an oil change, new tires, or change your windshield wipers.

What are you most looking forward to at YEC?

We love connecting with the diversity of leaders! That is who we are there for: their strengths, their leadership journey, and their innovative ideas for a better world. Can’t wait!

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