Alumni in Focus: Jonathan Hall
Named as one of InDaily's 40 under 40 for 2019, Co-Founder and Director of Life Whisperer, and Bachelor of Science and PhD graduate Jonathan Hall is this month’s Alumni in Focus.
Life Whisperer uses artificial intelligence to more effectively select embryos for IVF and ultimately improve outcomes for couples wanting children.
What are your favourite hobbies?
Music, specifically cello, is probably my biggest hobby. I’m also interested in physics, Warhammer and table-top gaming and enjoy doing barre. I’m also serving in kids ministry in church.
Favourite place to eat when in Adelaide?
Some of my favourites include Singapore House and Suri’s Thai Kitchen but possibly my favourite is Lenzerheide.
If I could go back to my University days I would…
Probably alter very little, no regrets. The things I did and people I met at University have enriched my life since.
My most prized possession…
Is actually a box-set of CDs (even though these have been replaced by the Spotify era). It’s what it represents, a complete set of Shostakovich symphonies. This is my favourite composer and represents a lot of the intellectual inspiration that has defined my early career and life.
What can’t you get enough of?
I can’t get enough of being inspired to do cool and amazing things to help people. It’s the moral aspect that’s so fulfilling. Instead of ruthlessness, which has an unfair prestige in society at the moment, I prefer mercy and kindness.
Something that makes you smile?
Other people smiling and the mindset shift achieved by surrounding yourself with positive people.
Something you are grateful for?
I find that gratefulness philosophy in itself is one of the most important things in life and one of the most powerful tools to help shift your mindset to a positive one.
The most valuable lesson I have learned…
The strength of affirmations to undo strong negative mental attitudes, and the power of belief.
I cannot get through the day without…
Peaceful meditation. I will often get up at 5 am so I can find quiet peace.
Three words your closest friends would use to describe you?
Loyal, patient, positive.
Your definition of success?
For me, success is about strong and fulfilling networks of friends and people. From a professional perspective (which is not at all the major driving force behind networks but an extra benefit), it is one of the greatest assets a person can have.
My mother taught me…
The important social skills in handling many difficult situations with others.
Your career path in two sentences or less?
To not chase career, and in fact throw away my career! That extreme anti-career manoeuvre not to accept your current career can be very entrepreneurial, and has defined what my career is today.
Biggest career highlight?
It was great being awarded a prize by Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, and to have a private lunch with him in San Francisco – definitely a moment to remember.
2019 is the year I will…
Get back to doing some of the fun parts of taking our product to market and doing some entrepreneurial experiments.
How do you relax?
Walks near Glenelg where my home is. It’s necessary.
What is the first thing you do when you get home?
Nowadays I don’t have a fixed routine and will often be going to events in the evenings. When I get a rare peaceful evening at home, I will either outsource it to the beach, or therapeutically watch old episodes of a show on Netflix.
The biggest risk I’ve taken…
Committing to new business partnerships and investments – you never know how it is going to work out but it’s necessary to take the risk so you can find those good, solid partnerships. You don’t need heaps, just one or two, but they can be hard to find.
A misconception about you?
That physics and mathematics training is dry, and contains no emotional skills – inspiration is a very important aspect in these subjects as it is for entrepreneurs.