#DefineExperience is our new bimonthly campaign where we interview interesting and successful people about their experience. We ask them not only about their professional experience, but also about the more personal side of things.
It’s a pleasure to introduce to you our sixth interviewee – Yoana Todorova, the Queen of Eggs, who got 3rd place in Masterchef Bulgaria Season 2 and is a member of the biggest entrepreneurship NGO in Bulgaria – Start It Smart.
1. Hey Yoana, what’s your story?
I’m a dreamer, that’s it!
I’ve spent more than 10 years in real estate and renewables, having traced from electricity lines to wind and solar projects across Bulgaria and Turkey. Beautiful work, I felt like an explorer! I made a register of about 90% of the solar energy projects in Bulgaria.
Then I suddenly caught the cooking fever and discovered my real passion – cooking eggs and making brunch, giving people a wonderful Sunday brunch experience.
2. Yoana, please define experience.
Experience is the joy of having the “gut” – once you get it, you want more and more of it in every aspect of your life. Still, the funny, desperate and a bit awkward years that stand before experience can’t be skipped.
3. What do you consider as your most significant accomplishment in your career so far? What about outside of your career?
I researched a new market for my company – the Turkish renewable energy market, made friends, partners and deals there. I convinced partners and clients to go there for business. For a sole initiative, I think it’s been quite a good job and I’m still proud of the partnerships I established.
Outside of my career, it’s definitely taking the decision of entering the cooking scene with a series of brunches that have now lasted for more than 18 months! The first step I took is the one I remember most.
4. Do you think failure is part of experience? What was your biggest failure?
I’ve never accepted failure, because I don’t use that word :).
But, I think that my biggest failures were coming from my own actions and came back to me at some point. Not listening to my intuition has always led me to destructive periods in my life. Both professionally and personally.
Even the biggest professional success I mentioned above was, in a way, failure to my personality: I got broke in the middle of the project and ended up living by myself in a country where I didn’t intend to move to.
5. What life-hack tips would you give to your 18-year-old self?
Use all your potential to focus into one thing at a time.
6. Would you do something differently if you had the chance?
I would’ve left people out of my life much earlier and easier if I had had the needed experience at that time. Because of focus.
7. This is not from the questions list, but can you tell us about your experience at Masterchef Bulgaria?
It’s been one of the most intense experiences of my life.
Performing at a contest, being closed in the same premises for hours, limited by too many rules and being involved in personal relationships with so many different people pushed me to reach unknown limits of my emotional self and experience something like never before.
The most satisfying experience, though, has been the one of witnessing what your personal focus can give you in return. Once decided, the prep has been my only focus for 4 months. In a way, Masterchef has been one of the most liberating sensations I’ve ever experienced professionally. I liked that and I’m willing to feel it again.
We want to thank Yoana for sharing with us her story. It’s always very inspiring to learn about someone’s lessons and achievements. Despite Yoana’s promising career in real estate and renewable energy, she found her truest passion in cooking and making people happy. She’s an excellent example of a person who is ready to make a career switch, take risks, start all over and succeed in everything that excites her and that life proposes.
If you enjoyed reading our sixth #DefineExperience interview, then stay tuned, because we’re just getting started. Moreover, if you’d like to be part of our #DefineExperience project by doing an interview yourself or recommending someone to get interviewed, then write to us.