An Interview with Jerry Ting, Forbes (US & Canada 2019) Law & Policy

Bruno (HE) Mirchevski
Jun 21 · 10 min read

(#00030) — Stay humble. Stay hungry. Help others.

Many times, reaching success and opening up your own company requires some form of sacrifice. It’s not a task everyone is up for, nor something that all of us can do. As with many things in life, there are two types of people — those who pursue their dreams despite all obstacles, and those who are too afraid to try.

So, which one are you, and how much are you ready to sacrifice for your cause?

Pursuing a career demands hard work, as well as a clear mind focused on walking the journey that lies ahead. When you truly want something, it won’t exactly be easy to get it, but the best things in life are always worth fighting for.

No matter what your niche is, or what type of company you are trying to build, as an entrepreneur, you should always strive to learn from others. Hearing success stories about people who have been through the same thing that you are experiencing right now can be truly motivational.

I personally find Jerry Ting to be one of these people, the ones that have some of the best stories to tell about the journey towards their success.

Jerry is an entrepreneur who has worked really hard together with his colleagues to establish their company, Evisort Inc. The success of Evisort got him a place on Forbes’s “30 Under 30 2019: Law & Policy” list, which was further confirmation of the team’s development, representing only one of their many accomplishments.

This is his story. Enjoy!

Bruno (HE) Mirchevski (The Logician):

Hello Jerry, thank you for being part of this mission! Can you tell us more about yourself? Who is Jerry Ting? How did you choose the career you have today?

Jerry Ting:

It’s a pleasure to be on the blog.

I’m a former lawyer turned technology entrepreneur.

I went to law school because my father was an immigrant small business owner, and I saw how valuable his legal counsel was to him and his business.

I wanted to work with business to help them navigate complicated legal challenges because I felt it was a way I could help.

I grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area and have always been inspired by entrepreneurship and innovation.

Many of my childhood memories revolved around technological innovations. I remember plugging my DSL modem with my older brother and my whole high school anticipated Steve Job’s Apple product launch keynotes and watched together in our cafeteria.

When I graduated from undergrad, I went to work at Yelp, where I helped small businesses advertise on the internet to get more customers. I loved working at the intersection of client relations and technology and this passion of mine led to me creating Evisort while I was at Harvard Law School.

Bruno (HE) Mirchevski (The Logician):

What is the vision behind Evisort Inc.? Why is it important? Can you describe your company in three words?

Jerry Ting:

Three words. Automate reading contracts.

The problem we solve for is the tedious task of having to manually track data inside of contracts. Contracts contain data that make the world go round and power economies. I always tell my team, if you look around you, everything can be broken down into a contractual relationship.

Supply chains are powered by vendor contracts, sales forces’ quotas are filled by sales contracts, and companies run based on employee contracts.

Due to the important and fluidity of contracts, across an enterprise, many different business units touch these important legal documents, whether it’s legal, finance, IT, procurement, sales or operations.

We have built a contract management system completely powered by artificial intelligence. A user can upload any contract into our system, and we can track dozens of the most important fields. In doing this, we free up enterprises to leverage more data and to be proactive in managing their relationships instead of being reactive.

Bruno (HE) Mirchevski (The Logician):

I would also like to take this opportunity to congratulate you on being among Forbes 30 under 30! Was this a dream come true? What would you say most contributed to this success?

Jerry Ting:

Thanks! It’s definitely something I was hoping to achieve before I turned 30 because I had always been inspired by tech entrepreneurs who were on the list and able to build impactful businesses before they turned 30.

From left to right: Amine Anoun, Jerry TIng, and Jake Sussman

What made making the 30 Under 30 list even sweeter for me was that both my co-founders, Amine Anoun and Jake Sussman also made the list with me.

We’re the only trio to make the list in 2018, and I think it’s because we brought together an interdisciplinary team of technologists, lawyers, and product managers to build technology that is truly differentiated.

Bruno (HE) Mirchevski (The Logician):

As the CEO of a large company, what do you think are the best and worst parts of being young and successful? Please explain.

Jerry Ting:

I started Evisort while I was still in law school, and sometimes I wondered if I gave up a bit of my graduate school experience since I was working 80+ hour weeks and barely making it to class and extracurricular activities.

Then I look at my team, the many clients I’ve been lucky to partner with, our investors, and the future we have ahead of us, and I realize that I was very lucky to have been able to start a company out of the Harvard Innovation Labs, which is Harvard’s center dedicated to entrepreneurship.

The worst part of being a young CEO is that I have a lot of responsibilities that my peers do not have.

As a startup CEO, there’s no off time. When it’s after 6 pm, it’s time for me to catch up on all the things I couldn’t do during the day and talk to my clients in other countries.

On the weekends, every time you meet a friend to catch up, one of the first things they ask you about is how your company is doing. It really becomes a holistic experience, and it’s not a good fit for everyone, but for the right person, it’s one of the most exciting experiences you can have if you enjoy what you’re working on.

The best part of being a young CEO is that I am a member of my team in the day-to-day. You hear a lot about companies trying to have a “flat” culture.

Having a flat culture is baked into Evisort because our management team started the company together out of nothing and this is all we have. This is our shot, and our dedication to the mission has carried over to our first 5 hires and then to our next 20 hires.

When I meet with clients, it’s a collaborative experience, I learn from them and they learn from me. It’s the new generation of our industry meeting the old, and the conversations we have are truly fantastic. They have the domain experience, we have the technology.

Bruno (HE) Mirchevski (The Logician):

Since you have already founded a tech company, I would like to know how important do you believe it is for every company to implement high technology? Where can we all make better decisions? Can technology help us be more efficient?

Jerry Ting:

I’m obviously biased, but I think technology can completely change how organizations function. I’ll give a simple example.

My sales operations team brought technology to me that truly amazed them. It was an automation tool that can link many actions together. For example, if we get a client email, it will automatically enter that email into my CRM, schedule a meeting for me, and remind me to follow up.

If you think about the number of steps that simple process requires and the mindshare to consistently do these repetitive tasks throughout the duration of the fiscal quarter, spending $20/month to automate it seems like a no-brainer.

Bruno (HE) Mirchevski (The Logician):

What kind of example are you setting for your team? What are the best employee engagement activities that are common at your company?

Jerry Ting:

There is no work that you are too good. I remember reading a story about how the CEO of Disney was walking through one of their amusement parks, leaned over and picked up trash, and put it into a trash can.

It made the news, but to me, it made every sense. When you truly love a company and the mission the company is on, you think of it as your company.

What this translates to for us is that ideas for how to improve Evisort are encouraged, even if it’s not directly in the purvey of your work.

If the product team has a good idea on how to help the sales team do demos better, they go directly to our sales team and they brainstorm. This is how we foster a community and innovation that is organic and it is one of the most valuable assets we have as a startup.

Bruno (HE) Mirchevski (The Logician):

According to you, what are the three habits people should have if they want to be/remain successful?

Jerry Ting:

Stay humble. Stay hungry. Help others.

Stay humble because your success was the result of a team effort and when you stop learning is when your competitors overtake you.

Stay hungry because the world changes around you, and hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.

Help others because everyone is on a journey and good karma comes around. We could have never built Evisort if it weren’t for the early advisors who took a bet on a group of students that had a dream.

Bruno (HE) Mirchevski (The Logician):

What is your definition of happiness? What matters in life? Who you are outside of your office?

Jerry Ting:

I read a book in an entrepreneurship class while I was in undergrad called The Monk and The Riddle. In the book, the author discussed the concept of a “deferred life plan”. The deferred life plan is the idea of deferring what you actually want to do to do something you feel like you must do now.

I think happiness is avoiding the deferred life plan and living right now.

Leading a high growth startup in Silicon Valley is a high pressured job, but building Evisort has been my dream. This is my life plan, and I’m living it now. I feel truly blessed to be able to live my life plan right now.

Bruno (HE) Mirchevski (The Logician):

Let’s say it is the year 2030. Where do you see yourself and your business? Do you have any future plans?

Jerry Ting:

In 2030, I hope to see Evisort be a household name for artificial intelligence for legal documents. I think the opportunity is truly that large.

The generation of entrepreneurs before me helped their generation digitalize paper documents and bring them to the cloud. Evisort has the potential to be the next generational company in collecting and optimizing data for businesses.

Bruno (HE) Mirchevski (The Logician):

Last but not least, what would you advise everyone who is still struggling to find their career path?

Jerry Ting:

Before I founded Evisort, I believe I tried as many career paths as anyone — journalism, photography, sales, investment banking, law, and consulting.

While you’re going through that journey of discovery, it may not feel like a journey, but it is. Everything you learn, every skill you pick up can be transferred to a different scenario later on in life. Hang in there and keep learning and growing while keeping an open mind for new opportunities.

The right one may be knocking soon.

Running a business and pursuing a cause is a complex process, one that requires your absolute attention. Just craving to do something won’t do it. You need to commit yourself to the cause and stay focused.

Understand that there will be a ton of responsibilities and even more struggles on your journey.

After all, pursuing a goal, no matter what your aim is, requires hard work, the right attitude, and a strong mindset that will endure the hardships.

Do you believe you have what it takes?

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The Logician

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Bruno (HE) Mirchevski

Written by

The Logician (Dreamer) 👁️ Don’t follow me. I am lost too!😎 Founder of HE Group - (Investor) 📈

The Logician

Don’t follow me. I am lost too!😎

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