There Is A Happy Ending with Gia Le · ShiftWorkPlace

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E61 There Is A Happy Ending with Gia Le


Virtuous cycle instead of a vicious cycle: A Vietnamese-Australian shows how to imbibe the best of two cultures to make this world a better place with self-awareness and deep honesty.

Bio for Gia Le

Gia Le is an award-winning entrepreneur, sales and marketing strategist, and wellness enthusiast. She is the Managing Director at Elite Digital Campaigns, a successful boutique marketing agency she founded in 2017 after over ten years working in the finance and insurance sector, and in real estate.

Gia felt something was missing in her life in Australia. When she visited her sister in Berlin with her German partner, her “heart was crying” because she fell in love with this new city. However, the pandemic allowed her to grow her business online from Berlin, and now does the work she loves.

Episode highlight

As a Vietnamese-Australian, Gia Le has learned to balance the world of refugee Vietnamese parents focused on the respect of authority, making something of themselves and collectivistic wisdom, with the world of Australian individualism, the challenge of authority and self-expression.



  • “If you have a product and someone is prepared to pay for it, that is the business.”
  • “If this pandemic is going to grip the world for the next 2-3 years, I’m going to choose happiness.”
  • “When your desire is in alignment, the universe conspires to help you.”
  • “The people who want to work with you because they are in alignment with your values will work with you regardless. You don’t need to be there in your Gucci dress stepping out of the salon to win business.”
  • “Seldom does the perfect plan really evolve, so staying open to change is really crucial.”
  • “When a city goes through so much… grief, triumph, it really makes.. the people more resilient.”
  • “When you raise happy children who fulfill their potential, they can give more and they can provide more.”
  • “My personal actions compounded over time make a huge difference.”
  • “When you are experienced, you don’t stay poor very long.”
  • “The illusion of who we think we are… is really fragile.”
  • “There’s a way to say everything. It’s not what you say, it’s how you say it.”


Childhood Incidents

Gia’s parents are Vietnam war refugees, and they came to Australia on a boat when she was 6 months old. Her upbringing influenced her desire to become an entrepreneur, developed her work ethic and made her resilient enough to immigrate a second time to Berlin.

She would accompany her parents from the age of 8 to all formal appointments as a translator since they didn’t speak English. She found that performative duty trained her to communicate with people from different cultures, ages and positions of influence, which has helped her in her career.

She struggled with the cultural difference between her school, which taught her “how to think and not what to think”, and her home, where she couldn’t correct elders even if they were wrong. However, it has now made her intuitive and perceptive in her conversations with others.

Influential groups

Gia learned from the contrast between her restaurateur parents’ explosive temperaments and the composure of her mentor at her first job, an effective communicator and negotiator. Her closest circle of friends still comprises the girls of Asian descent she went to high school with.

Temperament and Personality Influences

Gia claims she was born with her parents’ explosive temperament which continued into her teenage years but has now learned to be logical and calm herself with daily meditation. “I make sure my emotions don’t control me”, she notes.

Cultural Epiphanies

When Gia started her own business, she continued running it in the fast-paced, authoritative and dictatorial way she had observed in her career in finance and lost many good employees till she was told she needed to be more empathetic. She now treats her employees as her “virtual family”.

Advice to an Employer

Gia believes that clear communication from a client is of utmost importance for the concise delivery of objectives. She also thrives with clients who are engaged since that leads to a collaborative interaction.

More Great Insights!

Working in finance showed Gia that she could succeed solely on merit in the egalitarian, democratic society of Australia. Starting a digital marketing agency was a way to help clients use modern and more sustainable approaches. She now thinks consciously about her ecological footprint.

If you are an entrepreneur looking to be more in alignment with your values but feel hesitant to make a change, reach out to Gia. She is passionate about helping other entrepreneurs redesign their lives to put their happiness first, judging their lives by the quality of decisions they make.


Gia Le has lived a life of contrasts and negotiations between worlds that did not know how to communicate with each other. A keen observer of people and life, Gia has been able to pivot and adapt, taking the best of one life experience into the horizon of possibility as new opportunities present themselves.


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