We had the good fortune of connecting with Jennifer Yau Mattiola and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jennifer, how do you think about risk?
My perspective on taking risks is that it’s essential to both growth and fulfillment.
By definition risk means exposing yourself to danger in a situation. Since there is rarely real danger, such as a wild animal hunting us as prey, this means that in today’s world we actually create the perceived danger in our minds. The thing is, our nervous system cannot feel the difference between real danger and perceived danger. This is what then leads to anxiety, stress, and insecurities because we fear judgement, criticism, and people not liking us.
When you go after what you want in life and try to achieve something you never have before, whether it be professionally or personally, there will always be risk because you’re putting yourself out there. You’re exposed to judgement and criticism, and there is a chance you will fail.
However, on the other side of that is great reward. When you succeed at something you work hard for, it builds confidence and conviction. You develop skills and grow into the person you want to be. As you achieve targets and goals you work for, it creates enthusiasm and fulfillment which then leads to living in your true potential.
I have always said, “Regret is far worse than a broken heart. Follow your heart and you will never live with regret. If you don’t try then you’ll never know how the story ends. And that will stay with you forever.”
I would rather go for something I fully believe in and fail miserably than to stay stuck and unhappy. At least when I fail, I can learn something from the experience that will then help me move forward to where I want to be in my life, both professionally and personally. If you don’t try, then you’ll never know; and that to me is tragic. You have a choice — be okay with being uncomfortable and understand it’s all a part of learning, or stay comfortable and always wonder, “What if?”
I’ve had my heart broken many times in both life and career. I’ve made mistakes, but if I didn’t live those experiences, I wouldn’t know how to appreciate what I have now and who I have become. It’s all in the journey and you become who you’re meant to be on your way to your goals. The lessons I have learned have all been a part of my success today. You learn more from the failures than you do from the successes. So go out there and make mistakes! You will live a life worth living and be happy you took a chance on yourself. Because if you don’t, who will?
What should our readers know about your business?
I help founders and executives build team health and navigate remote leadership in newly hybrid work models, as well as guide them through successful career transitions.
I collaborate with my clients to determine the most important thing for them to achieve or the targets they wish to attain within a certain timeframe, then create a tactical strategy that would make achieving those targets, inevitable. Our actionable plan not only creates crystal clarity on vision and direction, but also allows for complete focus on executing top priorities to bring about the desired results.
My diverse background in-house and as an entrepreneur enables me to devise executable tactics to achieve results, no matter the professional level. By being a different perspective that can identify missed opportunities or blind spots, a mirror to reflect on hurdles and obstacles as they come up, and a sounding board to bounce ideas off, I am able to support my clients and hold them accountable to their commitments. I’m like a member of their personal board of advisors who they can fully trust and engage in the most confidential conversations about their professional and personal lives.
After being a sales and marketing executive for a Fortune 500 company in Canada and NYC, I founded a sustainable leather accessories line that I sold after growing and building it for almost 7 years. After the sale of my company I was on my own journey of discovering the next chapter of my career. What was I great at that I loved doing? If money were not part of the equation, what would I want to do professionally? How did I want to be spending my time and with whom?
From this journey I embarked on, I then got started to help and coach people through a similar transition in their professional and personal lives. It happened organically where I was working with people who were referred to me and from there my business flourished.
When you’re taking a chance on yourself it’s never easy, but it is the most fulfilling and rewarding decision you can make. No one can ever succeed on their own. It takes a ton of support and great mentors to guide you through your biggest challenges. One thing you do have total control over is your mindset. Without a positive and growth-oriented mindset, it would be nearly impossible to overcome the obstacles that you’d face in accomplishing your goals and dreams. Investing in yourself to continue to learn and develop is integral to success.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Favorite restaurants in LA: Farmshop – Favorite brunch spot and also celeb hot spot in Brentwood
Hatchet Hall – Southern style comfort food with fresh California ingredients; come for the cornbread that eats like a dessert
Gjelina – Great food, cute garden patio and even better people watching of Venice’s finest
Tar & Roses – One of the most consistently delicious places
Nueva – Fun patio with amazing tacos and tasty cocktails
Tesse – Yummy European influenced Californian fare in a great atmosphere
Beach volleyball on the beautiful sandy beaches in Ocean Park, Santa Monica
Hiking the Santa Monica Mountains in Malibu or Pacific Palisades
Bike riding along the beach path from Venice to Santa Monica
Rent a sailboat in Marina Del Rey and cruise to Malibu
Sunset drinks and bites at Elephante in Santa Monica
Rooftop seafood dinner at Catch in West Hollywood
Nightcap at Ysabel, Laurel Hardware or Delilah
Comedy show at The Comedy Store, The Laugh Factory or Westside Comedy Theater
Fun afternoon at Two Bit Circus downtown playing arcade, carnival games, and virtual reality experiences
Concerts at the Hollywood Bowl or Greek Theater
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My family and friends have been a huge part of my development. My mom is a warrior. She immigrated to Canada with my dad at 18 years old to go to school and taught herself English while earning a degree. From a young age she taught and nurtured my siblings and I, our work ethic and independence, and always believed that the only person you can really count on is yourself.
My close friends have been there for me through thick and thin. They’re great at listening and being a mirror, which allows me to reflect and grow.
My mentors are generous and supportive. I’ve learned a lot from them and I’m grateful that I have a personal board of advisors to bounce ideas off of and receive honest feedback. Their insight, advice, and guidance are appreciated beyond words.
The biggest catalyst for my growth and a major part of who I am today is because of my husband. Through his love, patience and faith in us, I was able to confront my demons and work through my personal trauma. He was supportive of me getting training and coaching, and having someone that has your back no matter what and willing to work through life’s problems with you, is empowering. I used to take everything personally, was triggered easily and reactive in my responses. Now I help people work their stuff and coach them to fulfill what makes them happy and feel successful. I am grateful that I chose a partner who continues to push and challenge me in all ways, and brings out the best in me.
You are the average of who you surround yourself with so your inner circle is integral to your growth. Choose who you hang out with wisely and don’t waste your time with people who don’t value and support you.
Books that changed my life:
The Alchemist – Paulo Coehlo
The Four Agreements – Don Miguel Ruiz
Your Inner Awakening – Byron Katie
The Power of Vulnerability – Brene Brown
Immunity to Change – Lisa Laskow Lahey and Robert Kegan
Outliers – Malcolm Gladwell
Mastering Leadership – Robert J. Anderson and William A. Adams
Traction – Gino Wickman
Never Split the Difference – Chris Voss
Thinking, Fast and Slow – Daniel Kahneman
Scaling Up – Verne Harnish