One of the most interesting and rewarding aspects of being a part of STEMedia is the opportunity to accept and share amazing content from you, our community. Abdul Gieballa, a very talented mechanical engineering student at UCLA is one such community member, when he brought his amazing project to us we were enthusiastic to bring it to you! His focus on engineering has led him to combat one of our more pressing issues in society, energy and its resulting crisis. Through the idea of redesigning wind turbines, he has made significant strides towards a problem that requires communities like ours to take notice. Recently he participated in an interview about his project, his inspiration and what he has learned. Below is an abridged version of the interview to read it entirely please visitnInTheirShoes who we partnered with for this post!
Q: Was there any point when you thought it was over? That you were going to fail?
Creating excitement for anything can be easy at the moment if the rhetoric is kind to the ears. Channeling that excitement into commitment and tangible work is another story. Our dream for this project is big and the sheer size and magnitude did intimidate some, which dealt us an early blow. We questioned whether the project would even get off the ground because of the small size of our team. The ones who remained had unwavering belief in what this project could become and the desire to be on the forefront of such a thing was too enticing to give up. The heart and will of our current team is equivalent to 5x our man power and that’s more than enough for now. Once our foundation is established the rest will fall into place. Aware of future adversity and possible complete failure, we remind each other that nothing we do is truly for nothing.
Q: As an entrepreneur how important has flexibility been in developing your venture?
Flexibility is key whenever a project is being tackled. Ideas are bouncing from one another and constant improvement of the product is taking place. An unspoken sense of compromise must be present for innovation to truly happen. What is better than one smart mind? A collection of smart minds. Egos must be checked and an understanding of something greater than yourself is under construction is vital. Adaptability to exploit each others strengths, being able to position each other in the best position to succeed, and making up, collectively, for each others weaknesses is also important. There is a “give” and a “take” for a common goal so flexibility is an essential condition that must exist if a group is to successful.
- What are your non-work habits that help you with your work-life balance?
A little stress is good for maintaining focus on a task but when it builds on past a point, it can be detrimental to the health of the task and ultimately to the health of the individuals. Everyone searches for a cure after the problem has been created. We say its better to cultivate habits that prevent the problem from the get go. Being able to break between “Work time” and “Me time” is vital. Don’t lose yourself in all the work and forget the aspects that make you, you. Those are equally important because they rejuvenate your spirit, which puts you in a positive manner to create positive work, and provide valuable skills and lessons that one can bring back to incorporate into their work. What makes this project and structure of business venture unique, in my opinion, is the fact that the group of individuals involved have long lasting intrinsic relationships that span far beyond and before their work relationships. Such a characteristic makes communication and collaborating much easier. Understanding each others strengths and weaknesses allows us to better match individuals and task that need to be accomplished. Lastly, the respect and love we have for one another makes it easier to keep each other in check and accountable for our work, because we all have each others best interest in mind. With all this in mind, we prevent the existence of stress past its detrimental phase as best we can.
- What is your best tip for entrepreneurs?
Strive for perfection even though it is unattainable. But when you strive for perfection, you attain excellence. Do things and ask if they are bringing you closer to your goals. Refine and perfect your craft. Consistency is key and though improvement is an infinite concept, your work will translate into excellence and that is what you will reap.
Thanks again to InTheirShoes!