Bruce Gao is 19 years old and is studying Neuroscience under the inaugural Schulich Leader Award – the Canadian equivalent to the Rhodes Scholarship. He is the Co-Founder of SimplySolar, an award winning tech startup that optimizes solar panels with phones. Born and raised in Calgary, he is a fluent public speaker who has presented to a diverse variety of people including students, venture capitalists and over forty university presidents in energy, entrepreneurial and education related topics.
Bruce: Probably one of the most important factors in an organization – a shared set of values and vision goes a long way.
Bruce: I want to create my own job. Part of it is because I want to make my own schedule as flexible as possible.
Bruce: It’s solid and hard to topple. Like a Jenga tower reinforced by steel and forged in the fires of 1000 Dwarven furnaces.
Bruce: This is very important. Without transparency, work is like a house with no windows. Not comfortable at all.
Bruce: I program in multiple languages and have my laptop, phone or desktop with me all the time. Seriously, technology makes the world go round.
Bruce: It means mission accomplished.
Bruce: Yes. Successes and accomplishments should be celebrated with enthusiasm.
Bruce: I am currently a full time student, however, as the co-founder of SimplySolar (www.simplysolar.me), maintaining solid communication between team members was often difficult (especially if your team gets accepted to different universities around the world).
Bruce: I learned this from my good friend Ryan. He said that “you don’t have to see the entire staircase to take the first step”. Really. Just work on your ideas, not matter how foolish they seem at first.
Bruce: No. I still don’t.
Bruce: Definitely from seeing other people use what I created because they find value in it.
Bruce: Only somewhat important. Education is a solid foundation, but birds can’t learn to fly by staying on the ground forever.
Bruce: “Hey guys, check this app that improves solar panels by 40% out! By the way, I’m 19.”
Bruce: Elon Musk.
Bruce: I am majoring in Neuroscience and to be honest, no. I took this major to originally get into medical school, but it seems like that I am doing more engineering than neuroscience-ing.
Bruce: Acknowledgement, support, positive work culture and free coffee.
Bruce: Unlimited opportunity, a chance to be Bruce and a strong shared vision.
Bruce: I literally think they are all important… They don’t need to be mutually exclusive.
Incentives and rewards 10
Training and development 10
Global opportunities 10
Bruce: Representing fellow students as a Changemaker at the Student Energy conference in Norway!
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