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Wonder, a podcast by Entrepreneurs’ Organization, places women entrepreneurs in conversation with those thought leaders who amaze, astonish and inspire. Each guest shares their own journey with entrepreneur and host, Kalika Yap, giving insight into the ordinary challenges of extraordinary people.

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Feb 23, 2018

Violet Lim is a mother, entrepreneur, and modern-day matchmaker. Today on the EO Podcast, Violet discusses her dating services, why single female entrepreneurs struggle to find a match, and how she juggles her businesses and her own personal life. Tune-in to learn why Violet’s desk is on the opposite side of the office from her husband’s, how she sets up monthly “dates” of her own, and how she’s already making an impact on the next generation (hint: babies!).

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 00:23 – Violet’s Entrepreneurial Journey
  • 00:35 – She is an only child, her parents were small business owners who told her to go to school and get a good job
  • 01:00 – She went to school for law, HR, and was a management associate at a bank in Singapore
  • 01:20 – She noticed her colleagues were all single, but her friends were all getting married and had met their other half in school
  • 02:05 – She came across the idea of lunch dating, no one was doing that in Asia or offering a dating service for people like her busy colleagues
  • 03:10 – She wanted to help people and has always been active in community service work
  • 03:24 – She never was a matchmaker, but her friends always called her for advice/support
  • 04:05 – Breaking the news to her parents
  • 04:22 – She had to tell her parents that she was going to quit her job and start her own company; they were shocked and believed she was cursing her next generations
  • 05:35 – They wanted Jaime, her husband, to do it first and see if it works out; she convinced them to give their blessing for her to go in 100%
  • 07:00 – Telling her colleagues and friends about her decision to begin a dating service
  • 07:45 – People thought she was crazy; when she quit it felt surreal but then natural
  • 08:30 – She likes to dabble in everything, and as an entrepreneur she can
  • 09:02 – Entrepreneurship is about solving problems; her service is about dating more efficiently
  • 09:35 – They are innovating, developing, doing R&D; they’ve gone online, they have a mobile app, and academy to help people become their best selves
  • 10:13 – Finding the right one is about being the right one
  • 11:00 – People don’t want to accept where they are and who they want
  • 12:00 – Her friend that doesn’t fully love someone but doesn’t want to take the risk; it isn’t settling, but there is no connection
  • 13:00 – Mismatching, incompatibility, and ticking boxes that don’t matter
  • 14:01 – Violet’s first sale: Working on the business, not in it
  • 14:20 – They hired a salesperson, came up with a script, shared it, and it started with a friend of a friend; it was $550 for 15 dates in 2004, before Tinder and other online sites
  • 15:10 – Lunch Actually service is personalized; client comes to the office for an interview to determine matches and select package to purchase
  • 16:25 – They review biases, personality and attractiveness
  • 17:00 – She predicts thousands of marriages have met through Lunch Actually
  • 17:20 – Lunch Click app
  • 17:37 – People don’t chat on the app; dating is an offline activity
  • 18:00 – Chatting on the app makes the chances of meeting lower; people can ask multiple choice questions that are more probing on the app then propose a date
  • 19:20 – Dates are usually proposed by the girl; they can choose venue, timing, and other options
  • 20:11 – She’s kept in touch with Lunch Actually families babies
  • 20:20 – The business is very emotional; they see sides of people you don’t normally see
  • 20:50 – She finds the business fulfilling
  • 21:18 – Violet’s advice for single female entrepreneurs
  • 21:30 – Women entrepreneurs find men to be intimidated by their success and sometimes find it difficult to find someone at the same level
  • 22:04 – Put time aside for dating, even if you are busy
  • 22:30 – “You’re going on a date, not a debate:” Find someone you can rely on and respect
  • 23:17 – Some women are fine with being the beta, but need a man that is enough of an alpha
  • 23:50 – Strong women who seem alpha are beta and want to find an alpha, but tend to attract betas because of their outward role as an alpha
  • 24:40 – Working with her husband Jamie
  • 24:45 – It works because they have distinct roles, strengths, and weaknesses; they complement each other, she is extroverted and he is introverted
  • 25:10 – She is Influence Dominant and he is Dominant Conscientious based on their personality test
  • 26:14 – They sit opposite ends of the office, have common values, and are best friends; they have arguments sometimes but always put the business first and don’t get personal
  • 27:45 – How she juggles family and business; Violet loves being a mom
  • 28:00 – She got married at 25 and had her first child at 26; she believes everything can be hand-in-hand so she focuses on family and business simultaneously
  • 29:00 – People struggle to find balance because they think they have to do everything at the same time; Violet balances her days of the week
  • 29:30 – She spends time with her family on the weekends and has one, one-on-one date a month with each child
  • 30:18 – They go shopping, go for a walk, have tea, talk, and do whatever they’d like; she also has started to do trips with them
  • 31:30 – Violet’s habits
  • 31:44 – She has quiet time in the morning, works with a coach to clarify her personal mission
  • 32:40 – She asks herself what she has done to achieve her personal mission
  • 32:46 – Violet’s personal mission: To be remembered for impacting billions of relationships through her life and work, and to inspire, to care, and to honor God in all she does
  • 33:10 – She reflects on everything in the past week and everything coming up to ensure it is aligned with her mission

 Key Points:

  1. Finding the right “one” is about being the right “one.”
  2. Create a business that fuels you and makes you feel fulfilled; create a personal mission and align everything you do with it.
  3. Even if you’re busy, make time for dating.

Resources Mentioned: