In this article

This article originally appeared on Vulcan Post

We’ve been lied to by the Internet about what Jack Ma has supposedly said in line of encouraging the eager young minds out there. From his disparaging those who are poor at 35 to his 10 powerful brainwashing sayings, the aspect of credibility (or lack thereof) has left people jaded on what is veritably his.

So we decided to take a look at one of his older speakings, and watching him in a video presentation, we can safely promise that this one is indeed, all Ma.

On a television show broadcast in May 2015 by South Korea’s KBS, Jack Ma spoke to young and eager South Koreans about how to be successful in life, as well as the regrets he faced. According to him, there is a timeline that we must all face in our lives; it starts from the time we turn 20, and lasts all the way till our 60s.

This is what he said:

Before you turn 20 years old, be a good student.

…just to get some experience.

Before you turn 30 years old, follow somebody.

Go to a small company. Normally, in a big company, it is good to learn processing; you are part of a big machine. But when you go to a small company, you learn the passion, you learn the dreams. You learn to do a lot of things at one time. So before 30 years old, it’s not which company you go to, it’s which boss you follow. A good boss teaches you differently.

Image Credit: The Apricity
Image Credit: The Apricity

Between 30 and 40 years old, you need to think clearly whether you want to work for yourself, if you really want to be an entrepreneur.

When you’re between 40 and 50 years old, you must do all the things that you are good at.

Don’t try to jump into a new area, it’s too late. You may be successful, but the rate of dying is too big. So when you’re between the ages of 40 and 50, think about how you can focus on things that you are good at.

Image Credit: Forbes
Image Credit: Forbes

But when you are 50 to 60 years old, work for the young people.

Because young people can do better than you. So rely on them, invest in them, and make sure they’re good.

When you are over 60 years old, spend time on yourself.

On the beach, sunshine, it’s too late for you to change.

This is my advice to the young people: 25 years old, make enough mistakes. Don’t worry! You fall, you stand up, you fall…enjoy it! You’re 25 years old, enjoy the show!”

On Regrets

Screen Shot 2015-05-26 at 3.41.07 pm

“Well, I regret a lot of things. I regret meeting the media. I regret that I speak in public. Because I could have my own privacy. I regret that I work so hard and spend so little time with my family.

And if I have another life, I would never do things like this. My wife said, “you do not belong to me, you belong to Alibaba.”


But, life is so short. It’s all about experience. People seek different views. Some people think you’re rich, you’re successful, but you’re not! Some people say this guy does not have money, he’s a terrible guy, but maybe not! Everyone chooses their own life.

I cry [because] we had a lot of problems that nobody ever [imagined]. Because I’m running a company, running 4,000 young people, operating a company for more than 500 million people. [With] 500 million people, if one percent are bad guys, then you have 5 million bad guys. So, it’s [a] headache.

But it’s too late to regret, forget about regret! Just think, “I’ve got 10-20 years to go”, enjoy the show, enjoy the ride.”

Image Credit: Business Insider
Image Credit: Business Insider

Featured Image Credit: Quartz

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© 2021 GRVTY Media Pte. Ltd.
(UEN 201431998C.)

Vulcan Post aims to be the knowledge hub of Singapore and Malaysia.

© 2021 GRVTY Media Pte. Ltd.
(UEN 201431998C.)