Why We Started Ikigai Network

Ikigai Network
2 min readSep 20, 2020


Ikigai — Reason to get up in the morning, the intersection of what you are good at, what you love doing, what the world needs and what you can be paid for

We started Ikigai Network because we think there is not enough support for young people trying to find their direction in life. A recent article by Greg Callahan in the Sydney Morning Herald highlighted that young Australians want to have meaningful careers and help people but that 40% of teenagers don’t know what they want to do after school. At Ikigai Network we don’t think that young Aussies should make up their minds too early but we do think that this speaks to a lack of high quality and engaging information.

The idea for Ikigai Network dates back to our respective experiences through the latter part of school and university. There were a few examples in our own lives that led us to believe the help young people were receiving to make one of the most important decisions in their life is a little under done;

  • A psychometric assessment in year 10 suggesting that the best destination was financial services, along with a 120 page fine-text handbook outlining career options
  • Omnipresent consulting and investment banking recruiters at university trying to take advantage of young people’s lack of direction
  • Few examples of people doing anything different and no connectivity with older peers who had already started out on their careers

What’s more, there was such a strong pull towards the mainstream, the most obvious criteria were prestige and pay and it seemed so much talent is drawn towards these without competing options young people can latch on to.

The best career guides for us have been our peers. They have surfaced opportunities, helped us chase after them and then navigate through our journeys after taking the leap. But by definition this has been a process of discovery in real time and after we have already started down our separate paths. We wanted to bring that system of advice from relatable people who have excelled through the first part of their careers to a wider audience and at an earlier stage in the decision process.

Ikigai Network is a collection of long form interviews with unique young artists and professionals. We have cut these up into bite size pieces so people can jump around and find the advice they need. We also want to make the product as useful as possible so are always open to feedback at info@ikigainetwork.io and we will be trying to bring you more exciting career stories and features as we grow.

Check Ikigai Network to stay up to date.