Q&A with Natalie Chan, Forty Under 40 Winner 2020; Co-founder, president and research director, Be The Change Group Inc., Age 34
Who is responsible for your work ethic?
My parents. As new immigrants, they showed me how you may have very little, but hard work and education will open up opportunities.
What is your guilty pleasure?
Cinnamon buns, Nanaimo bars, carrot cake and fried rice.
What is the best book you would recommend?
Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett. If you want a good laugh and love fiction, it’s one of my favourites.
Now that you’re entering your 40s, what goals have you set for yourself?
I want to build a better business model for family physicians, so new grads can practice without needing to learn how to run a business and can focus on providing quality care and improve the overall health of our community. My business partner and I plan to open a clinic in the future.
Choose one of these five childhood career dreams: rock star, star athlete, prime minister, astronaut, detective.
Astronaut – minus the nauseating flight to space. Is teleportation an option?
Name your happiest place.
Cuddling my dog, your dog, any dog, really. I really, really love dogs.
What was your toughest business or professional decision?
Limiting my day-to-day work at my company during my clinical training. It was quite hard to step back from projects I loved, but it was important to focus on developing my clinical skills.
Advice you would give your 20-year-old self?
Every time you fail, it is going to feel atrociously disgusting, but when you are done feeling pitiful, take the time to learn the lesson and be a better you.
What is your best habit?
Being hyper-organized and putting work, holidays, life events and self-care all into my calendar. It’s how I stay on top of everything.
Tell us one improbable fact about yourself.
Being a doctor is my side hustle.
Best piece of advice ever received?
Don’t accept advice from people whose values are not aligned with yours, even if they give it to you freely.
What career highlight are you most proud of?
AIDS Vancouver’s 30 30 Campaign: having the honour of telling the story of HIV in Vancouver and seeing how the series impacted the community.