Updates, thoughts, codes, startups & inventions of Samuel Koh

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The Story that Became the Vision

This is my short story. Albeit with some reluctance, I think it’s a good time for me to share about the underlying drive for me all these years - doing what I’ve been doing, coming to where things are right now.

I share this as a founder of Heartzmail, for our present and future customers, co-workers and investors who will come to be a part of our journey.

At the time of this writing, we’re just about to launch the latest, version 2 of Headquarter, powered by Heartzmail - a product that centralises all the tools that raise the game for sales and marketing people to connect with their marketplace and customers in a deeper way. A product that is created to bring people closer to each other.

My story goes back quite a long way as I reflect.

I started making things since a little kid. There weren’t much toys around me so I had made a habit of dreaming and making up whatever fancied my...

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Forget right, wrong, good or bad reasonings. There’s just reasonable reasonings for new generation startup leaders and teams.

I just had a good discussion with a long time friend and collaborator. By good, I mean the discussion was quite colourful. By colourful, I mean there was heated moments and conversations that went to and fro between English, Hokkien and some “passionate” expressions, albeit they were not directed at each other.

First thing first

The topic of team culture and the right mental posture for startup leaders and team members is one that is high on my mind. How do we create a happy, highly collaborative, motivated and dynamic learning team? Sounds like a mouthful for spelling productivity. It’s more than that. It’s about fulfilling the destiny of the team.

You see, my friend and I were discussing about how we are going to work together closer. Even though we’ve known each other for a long time and also worked together before, we cannot assume that we are aligned with every ideas and ideals...

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The disruption of education and learning

The sped up tech progression is bring disruption to many areas. Life as we know it will be changing, even faster. One major area is education and lifelong learning.

Some stalwarts of the establishment may not like the sound of it, which is understandable. But it simply can’t be ignored. Let’s take a look at a couple of what’s going on.

Khan academy

In 2004, Salman Khan was just making 10 minutes youtube videos to tutor his cousin Nadir. Fast forward that, Bill Gates, Google, Carlos Slim and others have backed this effort. This project very much started the disruption in education.

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To save myself some writing. Here’s a snippet from Wikipedia.

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University created edX in May 2012. More than 70 schools, nonprofit organizations, and corporations offer or plan to offer courses on the edX website.[6] As of 24 March 2016, edX has...

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Technological exponential growth - why there’s a lot more to think about this time round


To think about this new future is intriguing and exciting in a rather profound way. New technologies bring about new possibilities. Yet each time a new tech and product is launched, we are also reading some writings on the wall. When I saw Siri version one, I started thinking about what it’ll be like in version fifteen. My excitement is stirred with apprehension and fear all in the same cup.

Increased productivity means more profit for businesses. It also means job losses for many. Most people won’t even know what hits them, even after getting acquainted with their new irrelevance.

It has been this way for a long time some would argue. Not this time. I wouldn’t agree because this time round it’s quite different. The evolution curve is way steeper than before because of technological exponential growth.

We are contending with a situation that’s new and unprecedented.

A view from the...

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A much more powerful way to think about breaking limits

Most of us have heard the phrase “the sky’s the limit.”

That sounds nice. But think about it, how many of us have our lives impacted by that thought? In fact, I can’t even remember when was the last time that thought crossed my mind.

After all, there’s not much of the sky for a few months of the haze season in Singapore. But something lateral do happen every day - we imagine.

How about tweaking this a little and say - “our imagination is the limit!”

Everyone of us, knowingly or not, lives within the confines of our imagination. Within this confine lies our thoughts, beliefs, principles and knowledge that we’ve formed - through which we act upon.

Our imagination is the real box.

Try this experiment. Replace the word “thought” or “think” with the word “imagination” or “imagine.”

Norman Vincent Peale famously said, “you are your thoughts.” How about stretching this a little with...

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SkillsFuture: A real and urgent need to escalate the speed of change

And finally, the conversation that I’ve hoped was sparked a decade ago, but it’s better late than never. Here’s the video Let’s Think About It – SkillsFuture as a National Movement.

Singaporeans actually live within a thick layer of very hard mould. A rather tight social fabric of expectations created by a very pragmatic past.

The question isn’t whether creating this new culture is possible or can we make it as a nation? The question is how fast can we create a new culture of creative innovation? The truth is that we are no longer dealing with the predictability of time and tide, as much as we know it waits for no man.

We are dealing with unpredictabilities brought about by the impact of technologies and innovations from all over the world. And in this hyper connected world, this impact is very immediate, real and profound.

The graph of progression isn’t linear. With technology in...

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The high cost of ego, experience and a closed mind in the new age of reasoning

We are seeing personal experience and ego taking up lesser space in this new age of reasoning. In this new age, one can be awakened with sobering realisations to find certain tenets of cherished principles, beliefs, rules and laws of work and business to be obsolete.

Experience steadies the ship but it isn’t enough to keep it from sinking. And ego is the best friend of a closed mind, both of whom takes pride in perishing together rather than being challenged.

Too much of what’s happening today are things that seems unthinkable 10, 15 years ago. Professional gamers making hundreds of thousands of dollars a year. Accounting firms hiring software engineers to train them to become auditors. The rise of social media becoming mainstream. 5 to 10 years from now, things will be unrecognisable from today.

Think about this. Take a pot, and you throw in the following ingredients and start to mix...

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What the big guys teach us for free about sales

Observation is something that can be trained. If we want to become a better writer, just take the extra effort to observe how the writer forms his sentences in addition to just reading the story.

Asking good questions can also be trained. Just find yourself asking more questions on a single day and soon enough, it becomes a habit. We become more curious and inquisitive. And those who seek will find.

So what does Apple know about sales that others don’t? Is it just about having a good product? What did Blackberry miss out compared to Apple? Why did Samsung sell more when HTC had a better made phone?

Put the power of observation and the ability to ask good questions together. What we get is a rather powerful combo in learning - quite often for free.

The late Peter Drucker mentioned that companies just have to focus on innovation and marketing. I did not read his books. But I read this...

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Heartzmail: 2016 Chinese New Year Card Designs

As usual, you can send your cards individually using Heartzmail’s on-demand system.

Alternatively, if you’d like to send them out in batch, here are the simple steps to take.

  1. Write to Indicate your preferred design (A, B or C)

  2. Sign in to your heartzmail account. In the Activities page, tick under the RG column for those you want to send. Remember to save your selections on every page.

  3. Ensure you have enough balance in your accounts for the cards you want to send. Once your cards are sent, you’ll see them in your transactions.

Design A

Design B

Design C

Here to support you
If you have questions or need further assistance, please feel free to call us at +65 6871 8875 or email

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Why consider the Sales Profession?

It’s not uncommon to hear people say, “I don’t wanna do sales.”

It’s also not uncommon to hear people say, “Lee Kuan Yew is the greatest salesman in Singapore.” I take this however, as a gross understatement.

To bring Singapore from a swamp to become what it is today in less than 50 years, he can’t be the greatest salesman in Singapore. He has to be the greatest salesman in a generation, at least.

When you have a resume and an employer needs to buy it before your family’s clock starts to tick, you’re in sales.

For Lee Kuan Yew to lead Singapore, he has to sell the Singapore dream and vision to all the founding team and the generations that came after. People must buy in to that conviction, dream and vision - something that was yet to materialise.

Sales is a noble profession underrated and undermined by closed minds and people of lesser grit. I used to think much lesser of the sales...

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