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I Launched My Own Professional Coaching Business After A Master Of Science In Innovation

Ying Han Cheng drew on her personal experiences, along with the business skills she learned during her MSc in Innovation, to launch her own professional coaching business, Y-Age.


By  Bethany Garner

Mon Sep 21 2020


How SMU prepared me to overcome business challenges

Building a company from the ground up came with plenty of challenges, Hani recalls. One of the most significant was creating a virtual business, unrestricted by geography.

“I decided to build the business online so its impact can reach beyond Singapore. The challenge was finding the leaders we support from five different continents, while maintaining Singapore as our happy home base.”


Managing cash flow and scheduling across five different time zones also raised several organizational difficulties, such as maintaining team morale remotely, and ensuring accountability. The skills that Hani learned during her MSc in Innovation helped her overcome these hurdles. 

“SMU’s classes taught me how to think ahead when creating contracts and agreements, and also apply design thinking to every part of our product launch process,” she explains. 

The MSc in Innovation is designed to help students like Hani to develop the skills they need at every step of founding and growing a business.

Modules ranging from Opportunity Recognition, Ideation and Innovation Management to Business Acceleration and Growth Strategy ensure that graduates leave with a far-reaching plan for their own companies.

Achieving global growth


Since it was founded in 2015, Y-Age has gone from strength to strength.

Hani has added talks and events to her offerings, and even condensed her coaching wisdom into an Amazon best-selling book—You Only Live Once: Life and Business Innovation Style

Today, she runs Y-Age from Paris, along with six team members around the world. Hani credits much of her success to the MSc in Innovation at SMU.

“SMU helped me gain momentum in the foundations of running a business, and supported me with a network of outstanding peers to tap into whenever I was facing challenges,” she concludes.

“The program contributed to my well-rounded understanding of business and entrepreneurship.”

For more information about Hani’s work:

o   Upcoming Webinar

o   Y-Age Website   

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