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Benjamin Wong of the Kid CEO Podcast: “We can solve every issue threatening our world, and even mankind”

I see a world where we can work together to make positive change. Instead of cherishing competition in business and even education, we must focus on similarities instead of differences. There are so many issues in the world that boast bipartisan agreement, but society is bogged down by micro-details, resulting in unnecessary stalemates. If we […]

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I see a world where we can work together to make positive change. Instead of cherishing competition in business and even education, we must focus on similarities instead of differences. There are so many issues in the world that boast bipartisan agreement, but society is bogged down by micro-details, resulting in unnecessary stalemates. If we all forget the past and focus on the future, we can solve every issue threatening our world, and even mankind.


As part of our series about young people who are making an important social impact, I had the pleasure of interviewing Benjamin Wong.

Benjamin Wong is the 14-year old host of the Kid CEO podcast, seeking to change the perception of what kids can do through the inspirational stories of young entrepreneurs. Through these conversations, Ben has gained a unique perspective on kidpreneurs, understanding the key characteristics and traits of all successful youth.


Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we dig in, our readers would like to get to know you a bit. Can you tell us about how you grew up?

I was born in Toronto, Canada, but in 2007, my 5-person family and I moved to California. I grew up with an entrepreneur family, who always ensured that I made the most of every opportunity and chased my wildest dreams. Whether it was selling fruits on the corner to buy a video game or wanting to learn to code, I am so thankful to my parents for always supporting and being there for all my different ambitions.

Is there a particular book or organization that made a significant impact on you? Can you share a story or explain why it resonated with you so much?

The Gates Foundation has been a huge inspiration for me for as long as I can imagine. Not only because of its extraordinary social impacts, but the story of the man behind it all. Growing up dreaming to be an entrepreneur, Bill Gates is an obvious role model, and considering his philanthropic work, I have long-yearned to make an impact as great.

You are currently leading an organization that is helping to make a positive social impact. Can you tell us a little about what you and your organization are trying to create in our world today?

With the Kid CEO podcast, I want to bring out the genius in every kid. Whether that may be a talent for writing, baking or business, I believe that by telling first-hand stories of already established world-renowned youth, young listeners will take initiative and in turn help foster our world’s next generation of entrepreneurs.

Can you tell us the backstory about what originally inspired you to feel passionate about this cause and to do something about it?

Growing up always interested in ‘adult’ topics such as finance or investment, I wanted to share my unique expertise with classmates and friends. But while creating the original show (still about investment and finance), I ran into many influential kids and became so amazed at what they were able to do. With the Kid CEO platform already built, I switched gears and began conversations with inspiring young entrepreneurs, wanting to share their stories and expertise with the world.

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you began leading your company or organization?

The most interesting thing that happened since starting the Kid CEO podcast was my two first media appearances that kicked everything off in August. The first appearance was in my local newspaper, and it was the first time anyone had ever invited me to an interview, and the experience was surreal. This first appearance led up to a second interview, this time by a local news station. This experience was just as amazing, as I saw myself on actual TV!

Can you tell us a story about a particular individual who was impacted or helped by your cause?

A couple of months back, I interviewed a young 12-year old entrepreneur named Carter Waugh. Carter had just raised capital for his new business, Critts. As an aspiring kidpreneur, every experience was an entirely new realm, and he was so curious about the business environment. Seeing his ambition, he was booked on the show, and I could see in his eyes throughout the entire interview his genuine passion for business. Yet, the real magic occurred after the original interview. Immediately afterward he turned the table and began asking me questions about my work on the show, and one day in the mail I received a letter from him, writing about how much it meant to him to come on the podcast, reminding me once again, the impact of my work.

How do you define “Making A Difference”? Can you explain what you mean or give an example?

‘Making a difference’ is an incredibly broad term, but I would define it as simply changing one’s life. But because the term ‘life’ is just as open-ended, it may come through anything, including changing one’s mindset, passion, or motivation.

Many young people would not know what steps to take to start to create the change they want to see. But you did. What are some of the steps you took to get your project started? Can you share the top 5 things you need to know to become a changemaker? Please tell us a story or example for each.

To become a young change maker, the very first step is finding your vision. This step is easier than it looks, all it takes is to sit down and think about where you want to be in say, 30 years. Step number two is borrowed from the famed Warren Buffett. Take out a pen and paper and write down 20 sub-goals, in mini-goals that can be accomplished within those 30 years. This could include graduating from college, starting a business, or even making some new friends! Step number 3 is to write down the 3 most important of the 20, as in the goals that you simply can’t stop thinking about. To make it easier, if you were to leave Earth tomorrow, which three goals would you miss the most. Step #4 is taking those three goals and making them visible to you at all times. You could put them on your phone wallpaper, write them on your arm, or even frame them! Lastly, step #5 is to find your ‘push’. I believe that even the most motivated of people need something to give them a little push in the right direction. Personally, reading biographies is a great way to stay motivated, but the push could come from a parent, friend, or even from a motivational youtube video!

What are the values that drive your work?

As an aspiring businessman, I grew up hearing stories of the cut-throat nature of wall-street, or the ‘winner mentality’ of the corporate lifestyle. But hearing these stories touched my heart in the worst way imaginable. Ever since then, I’ve committed to winning through hard work, social responsibility and integrity, the values that drive who I am to this day.

Many people struggle to find what their purpose is and how to stay true to what they believe in. What are some tools or daily practices that have helped you to stay grounded and centred in who you are, your purpose, and focused on achieving your vision?

Two main activities keep me focused on achieving my visions; books and friends. I had never been a huge fan of reading, but occasionally I would have these outbreaks, where I couldn’t put down a book. Then it occurred to me that it wasn’t reading that I didn’t love, but the books I read. As soon as I found the books I love (mostly personal development books and biographies), they have always kept me focused, entertained, and educated. The second most important practice to keep me centered is having a strong, close group of friends. Now, these friends don’t have to have similar interests as you, but they understand and support who you want to become. By sharing ideas and experiences, working hard towards our dream becomes an enjoyable journey.

In my work, I aim to challenge us all right now to take back our human story and co-create a vision for a world that works for all. I believe youth should have agency over their own future. Can you please share your vision for a world you want to see? I’d love to have you describe what it looks like and feels like. As you know, the more we can imagine it, the better we can manifest it!

I see a world where we can work together to make positive change. Instead of cherishing competition in business and even education, we must focus on similarities instead of differences. There are so many issues in the world that boast bipartisan agreement, but society is bogged down by micro-details, resulting in unnecessary stalemates. If we all forget the past and focus on the future, we can solve every issue threatening our world, and even mankind.

We are powerful co-creators and our minds and intentions create our reality. If you had limitless resources at your disposal, what specific steps would take to bring your vision to fruition?

With unlimited resources at my disposal, I would seek to build an entire Kid CEO K12 university. I would replace different aspects of the ordinary school system with real-world concepts. For example, instead of traditional school administrations with a principal and vice-principal, the school will be led by a student-run senate and house, replicating that of the US government. Classrooms will be converted to mini corporations, each with their own CEO and VP leaders, similar to the corporate hierarchy. Additionally, excluding the core class such as Math and English, I would replace all courses with enjoyable mini degrees, in subjects such as philosophy or computer science. With these state-of-the-art mechanisms, students will enjoy going to school and be excited to learn, helping to foster genuine leadership, curiosity, and ambition.

I see a world driven by the power of love, not fear. Where human beings treat each other with humanity. Where compassion, kindness and generosity of spirit are characteristics we teach in schools and strive to embody in all we do. What changes would you like to see in the educational system? Can you explain or give an example?

The educational system very simply teaches students how to become workers, not leaders. With a greater focus on grades than actual learning, students never fully grasp the content, and worse, begin to look down upon education. This will come to harm students in the future, as almost all successful people consider themselves ‘life-long learners.’ To change this, we need to redesign education to focus on finding passions, not A’s, promote every student’s uniqueness, and allow them to learn what they want to learn, for example substituting Ancient History with financial literacy or ‘entrepreneurism 101.’

If you could tell other young people one thing about why they should consider making a positive impact on our environment or society, like you, what would you tell them?

Every person, regardless of age, has a vision they see for the future. But no one person’s vision looks the same. If a young person walked up to me asking why he should consider making a positive impact on society, I would simply tell him that I am not waiting to build my future, so why should they? After all, what’s wrong with a little head start?

Is there a person in the world with whom you would like to have a private breakfast or lunch, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we tag them. 🙂

Being a young podcaster, a major role model of mine is Guy Raz, host of the podcast How I Built This. I admire his constant commitment to his craft, making sure each episode is great, as well as Guy’s ability to manage multiple simultaneous shows, ensuring his constantly ignited passion.

How can our readers further follow your work online?

Readers can find out more about me at benjaminwong.org or through my Instagram @officialbenjaminwong. They can also listen to the Kid CEO Podcast on iTunes or Spotify. I’d love to hear from them!

This was very meaningful, thank you so much. We wish you only continued success on your great work!

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