Hone your leadership skills with this virtual platform
Online educational platform NewCampus aims to be a virtual university for today’s business leaders
“Do I copy an idea from the US to launch a localised app? Do I attend events on the weekend to meet new people?”
These are among the multitude of questions that Will Fan, co-founder of NewCampus, asked himself as a budding entrepreneur. But at this moment, he’s found some answers with the edtech company he’s currently running. With an international community that reaches across Singapore, Australia, the UK and the UAE, Fan’s remote platform is taking over the world with its innovative approach to learning.
At its core, NewCampus is a business school for the modern businessperson, providing a higher education model that is different, affordable and accessible. With a team comprising veteran operators and advisers from brands like Netflix, Ikea and Gojek, NewCampus pushes the boundaries of what it means to learn and work in the post-modern world.
Each session is based on the concept of being a community learning experience, which means that the speaker and participants engage in active discussions with each other. Ideas are shared in small groups and participants are given the chance to practise their newly learnt skills on the spot, receiving instant feedback.
It’s easy to dismiss NewCampus as one of the many educational platforms available online, but Fan is acquiring a university licence for the company this year, permitting its classes to be internationally accredited.
While NewCampus is open to all working professionals, it’s primarily targeting three core groups: those in the business, technology and creative realms; small-business owners and entrepreneurs; and start-up founders.
Ultimately, the company strives to build better leaders, who will in turn build better businesses, which would then hopefully become the driving force for solving some of the world’s most pressing problems.
What inspires you as an entrepreneur and as a visionary?
William Fan (WF): I never saw myself as an edtech entrepreneur, but as someone who fell into this industry. I’ve fallen in love with this space and am driven to help others reinvent themselves through accessible leadership education. This could mean shedding light on new career pathways, making introductions to a new network or allowing them to develop the business confidence for a changing market. We’ve helped transform over 2,000 lives and I look forward to the next milestone of 100,000.
Who do you attribute your successes to?
WF: My first shout-out would be to my parents, older sister and younger brother for giving me the opportunity to take this leap of faith. Yes, there may be plenty of sleepless nights, but being able to work on a project and build a business you love is something most people don’t have the opportunity to do.
The second group of people would be my close circle of mentors and advisers who help me stay positive and objective in times of uncertainty. And of course, it would be my team at NewCampus, who have been with me for a good part of the five years. We call ourselves a venture-backed family business because we are all in this to challenge the status quo of education. To take on an industry that hasn’t needed to reform for decades, you need the team to be equipped to enter battle at all times, regardless of the risk. COVID-19 has been the big accelerator and now we are ready to create meaningful change in higher education.
Do you have any philosophies you adhere to, whether in business or in life?
WF: The biggest risk is not taking any risk at all. When I was younger, I had a pretty high tolerance for risk in general, but as I matured as an entrepreneur, it’s evolved into taking more calculated bets on where the market is moving, how to approach certain problems or doubling down on a business opportunity. This has certainly helped with the experience I’ve gained with the various companies that I’ve founded across several geographies.NewCampus