From Zero to Millions
John Lee, a charismatic, powerful and sophisticated businessman, attracts huge audiences at his Wealth Dragons events all around the world. His life has tested him with tough challenges but just like every successful entrepreneur, he never stopped believing in himself and finding a purpose that goes beyond his own life. He had a big vision from the beginning, to achieve success through helping other people to be successful. This insightful interview shows what drives John Lee in his mission to contribute for a better world.
By Mirela Sula
How would you describe the story of your childhood?
My childhood was a fantastic and varied journey as well as a huge inspiration. I learnt the importance of hard work but also realised that there are only a certain number of hours in the day to do that work. So what was the alternative? To become financially free and to go ‘From Zero To Millions’, I realised that I had to look at passive income streams to achieve ‘freedom’ in every sense of the word. I avidly read biographies of those who had achieved success before me, soaking up as much information as I could, and adapted it, over time, into my own wealth creation strategy.
Who has inspired you during your upbringing?
All of my family – my parents for their work ethic and also my Uncle Chi who taught me that if you want something you have to go out and create it for yourself. The sacrifices my family made for me and other family members stay with me to this day.
What was your biggest dream when you were a child and how do you connect with that dream now?
By the time I was a teenager, I knew I wanted to be a millionaire and financially free by the time I was 30. I achieved this by the time I was 27. I wanted the dream life and knew that I had something to share in the context of the greater good but knew that it wasn’t going to be handed to me on a plate. My life really has been a yellow brick road journey, with each step taking me where I needed to go. My life mission now is to share my teachings and strategies with men and women the world over, using my story as a blueprint – if I did it, so can they.
Can you tell us about your relationship with your mother?
I have a huge amount of respect for my mother and for the key matriarchal role she has played in making me who I am today. She nurtured me in so many ways when I was growing up and now that I have the means, I always want to help both of my parents in as many ways as I can. I saw the number of hours my mum worked in our family’s Chinese restaurant – work that was undertaken with pride and honour, not just as an obligation or ‘job’.
When did you realise the passion about speaking and inspire others and do what you do today?
I probably became aware of this from a young age, as an aspiring actor on British TV on shows like Byker Grove and Little Britain. I always had a ‘voice’ per se but sometimes it wasn’t heard, or disrespected. I was always true to myself though and knew that I had to keep pushing myself to become the person I wanted to be. It was only when I started reading around the subject of personal development and met up with my now business partner, Vincent Wong, that this part of my personality took on a life of its own.
How difficult has it been for you to achieve what you have today?
If you ask any successful person, the road to success is never easy. There are always challenges along the way. What determines your propensity to reach the summit of your industry or life path depends on your mindset and attitude. You can embrace failure and learn from it or you can become a victim and let it dictate the rest of your life. For me, I never take anything for granted and always strive to achieve more, with a view to helping others.
You can embrace failure and learn from it or you can become a victim and let it dictate the rest of your life
Can you share with us any story from the past that still stays with you?
I was sweeping floors in my parents’ Chinese restaurant in the North West of England and I realised that working 18 hours a day was not the solution to achieving sustainable wealth and success. It was exhausting and whilst I had every respect for my parents for giving themselves to this huge life commitment, it was a huge lightbulb moment for me. I knew I needed to break out of this mould.
What are the biggest challenges that you have faced in life?
There are always challenges in life. For me personally, I was often criticised and put down by many people around me. Chipping away at a young person’s confidence can have a damaging effect so I took myself out of ‘red lighter’ or negative environments to buckle down, educate myself, believe in my abilities and create the life I knew I was worthy of.
You are the co-founder of Wealth Dragons – how did this venture start and where is it leading?
I met Vincent Wong during our parallel journey in the area of personal and professional development – our meeting was timely and synergistic. I was interested in Vincent’s investment strategy, lease option deals and how they were done. So we connected, with a view to putting some deals together and the rest, as they say, is Wealth Dragons’ history. The company was officially inaugurated in 2009.
I took myself out of ‘red lighter’ or negative environments to buckle down, educate myself, believe in my abilities and create the life I knew I was worthy of
What is your experience of working with your business partner?
Vincent and I complement each other perfectly as business partners. And we are like family. Whilst we are very different people, sometimes with differing views, we are like a great cake recipe and we constantly challenge and push one another to be our best selves possible. Of course there have been challenges along the way but these make us grow and evolve. I cannot imagine life without him and see Vincent more as a brother than a business partner.
You speak all around the world – what is different about each country where you speak – how do they respond?
At first, cultural expectation may dictate how audiences respond e.g. in Asia, some people may, at first, be slightly more reserved or feel less inclined to speak up. My talks are very high energy so by the end of the session or event, most people have discovered part of their inner extrovert to take them to the next stage of their business or life path. Because of my British born Chinese roots, I am particularly sensitive to cultural differences so will try and tailor my presentations.
Your events are very popular with massive audiences – what is the number of women attending your seminars?
Events are probably split 50:50 men and women. Sometimes, we have families in the room – and children can come up on stage if they want to. We love to embrace the next generation of wealth creators.
What is your opinion about women entrepreneurs?
Female entrepreneurs are a necessary requirement in today’s business world. Women tend to be the nurturers in business and have a slightly different approach to business than men. As natural multi-taskers, women are also adept at seeing the detail through, more so than some men. But I don’t want to over-generalise.
We love to embrace the next generation of wealth creators.
You will be speaking at the Global Woman Entrepreneurship Forum – what are the topics that you will cover?
- John’s Lee’s ‘From Zero To Millions’
- -How to start an online business
- -How to grow your existing business using online strategies
- -How to create passive income streams