“If you let me launch Revolut in Australia, I’ll give you New Zealand for free.” And that’s how Will Mahon-Heap pitched himself to lead our very first Expansion. While his home country, New Zealand, will launch by the end of 2020, Australia was Revolut’s first territory outside of Europe. Thanks to his hard work, the wins and lessons learned have become a blueprint for launching other territories around the world.
Expansion is like launching a new startup, over and over and over again. It requires the same attention to regulation, feasibility, market, and product rollout that Revolut had to think about at first iteration. It requires the kind of person that Peter Thiel talked about in his definitive book on startup mentality ‘Zero to One’ - someone who builds fast and upends established industries. Will talks with intensity about how he’s one of these people, and it’s easy to see how that drive helps us launch internationally.
He was bitten by the startup bug when he founded the first Tasman equity crowdfunding platform in 2015. But by 2018, he felt something within him needed more. So he asked himself the same questions he asks every six months to evaluate where he is in life: “Am I happy? Am I learning? Am I earning?” The answers led him to Revolut.
We should all ask ourselves those questions regularly. It’s not just relevant to assessing if you are feeling fulfilled and challenged in work, but can be adapted to any area of life. Will trained as a lawyer and worked as a solicitor for several years before first asking himself that question. He says the first two questions are the ones that drive the third: if he isn’t happy and learning, what’s the point of earning? So, he quit to go and surf for three months in Sri Lanka.
Restlessness can be a side-effect of the Zero-to-One mentality, but Will finds that the relentlessness of launching territory after territory brings him that excitement over and over again. He even admits that he didn’t expect to find himself still here three years later - but he’s still happy, and there’s always more to learn with each new expansion. It can’t all just be wild exhilaration 24/7 - and that’s where Will’s legal training helps him to put a foundation in place to launch new territories. The maxim “what we build, we must maintain” is always at the forefront of his work.
So, ask yourself: Are you happy at your current job? Are you learning? Are you earning? Sometimes we can become trapped by the idea that security is more valuable than anything else. But you don’t have to let the third question drive the first two. At Revolut, we believe in creating opportunities that will enable you to thrive in the workplace. You should want to feel energised, inspired, and challenged by the work you do every day. There shouldn’t be a moment of boredom - maybe we should start thinking of those compulsory, mundane work tasks as downtime from the excitement that work has the potential to create for you. What are you waiting for? Check out our Careers page and see if there’s a posting that could make sure you start saying yes to “are you happy, are you learning, and are you earning?”
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