Meet Jon Olsson, the most entrepreneurial skier.29 April 2015 ‹ view all posts
I'm sure that when you picture going on a ski trip, you don't think of carrying your skis to the slopes in a Lambo or an R8... well this guy does. Meet Jon, the skier who shows you how actually boring an office life can be.
I am a passionate skier, so I know Jon from the all the ski movies I have seen. We briefly met one evening in Monaco, which funnily enough was after this interview was conducted. Through his creativity in both skiing and business, he has been and still is a great role model and a true inspiration. I believe there's plenty to learn about finance from people outside finanice and Jon is a great example of the first such person to be interviewed by Shard Fund.
To find out more about his daily enevours check Jon Olsson's personal blog.
Thank you for the interview, Jon!
Where did you grow up and what kind of life did you have as a kid?
I grew up in Sweden and all I wanted to do was ski. I had no other plan what so ever. For some reason I looked at it as a sure thing that I would be a pro skier!
Your success stared in freestyle skiing, however your lifestyle is different form that of your peers. What were the major, decision and risks you had to take in order to get where you are now?
Well, I guess I never set a plan. One thing just led to another. I always tried to do everything as well as I could and since I think a lot, I found things over the years that I wanted to do better, so I started my own companies and tried to improve the areas that I could. Now that I am 32, I focus a lot on the business side of things, as I know I will not ski forever. I want to build a good abse to stand on once I will work full time. Without this I would be very unsure of my future, but now I am just excited!
You are a skier, businessman, blogger, producy designer, host of large ski events... What do you see as your biggest and most fun achievement?
Winning the X games and reaching the World Cup in Ski racing is what I am the most proud of. I think there is always time to do a lot more than you think, you just have to stay focused. I never have a day off which is frustrated at times, but practice makes perfect and success does not come easy. I do love to have an idea and working to make it a reality. Starting a new company in the next few days, so even more things to come. But I want to diversify and have a lot of options in the future!
You seem to be very good at finding mutually beneficial grounds in any of the ventures you’re part of. What goes in your mind when starting a new venture?
Well, the first thing I think about is how things will be affected by what I do. If I do things well towards a sponsor it will benefit me in the long run. When starting companies I really look into the competition and see if there is an opening in the market. I never go into product categories that has a ton of great things. I like new categories!
Thousands of people wish they were in your shoes, as your life looks amazing. What did you have to give up to lead the lifestyle you do?
You have to think a lot, ideas do not apper when you are playing playstation. I have had a super hard time falling asleep for the past 5 years, as I have a million things running through my head. I wish I could slow down and just chill, but that’s not me, I need new things. I like my life at the moment and if would start parting and stop working, I would lose it all as the money would run out. I am planning on a sober New Years, as I need to work on the 1st. You have to choose what you want the most. I know some super entrepreneurs and they inspire me, I feel like I am slacking compared to them, you can always work harder!
Most of our readers are going after 100 hour per week office jobs in finance in order to drive a Lambo. You being a Lambo-driving veteran, what advice can you give to the young generation in regards to their professional lives?
I could never work for someone, I need to create things on my own. That’s for sure the easiest way to afford cars like this, but it's also a very hard one. You will never have someone telling you want you need to do, it will all be on you. You need to be diciplined and have a plan. I have learnt that spening less money is the easiest way to make money. I used to spend a ton, now I try to be smarter and eat at home.
When growing up, you wanted to become:
Interviewer: Stelian Nenkov
Job title: Skier
Born: Mora, Sweden
Job title: Skier
Born: Mora, Sweden