about me

Pursue True Happiness

Kay Makishi

My Family Name MAKISHI 眞喜志  in Japanese means Pursue True Happiness. My family has a 400-year heritage in Okinawa, Japan. I was born on August 26th - Women's Equality Day in the US - and the first in my family to be born in the US. I mostly follow my intuition and have a strong sense of duty to make our world better by constantly becoming a better version of myself. 

My Life Mission is to unite and uplift our world. The theme for my next three decades is to make others happy through good product with great people. Good for people, planet and profits. 

My Life Chapters. There are three chapters I developed at age 15 inspired by my favorite book Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl. Since time is Human's common currency, it's based on age. 

  • Chapter 1.  LEARN 0 - 29. This is the chapter where I learn more about who I am, what the world is, and how I want to make an impact during chapter two. Worked in private, public and nonprofit sectors. Had tons of side hustles, took every job I thought interesting. Traveled 50 countries, learned about my heritage, masters from Oxford, etc. My motto was "try everything".

  • Chapter 2. EARN 30 - 59. These years are spent building my career. Turning ideas into actions into results. My motto is "pursue true happiness". See below My Beliefs #1 for my definition of pursue true happiness. 

  • Chapter 3. RETURN 60 〜. This chapter is when I become an investor and educator. Most likely this will manifest in building a school around fundamental new ways of doing business and being I will hope (if I am lucky) have the opportunities to design and develop by doing in chapter two. Normalizing the triple bottom line model of people, planet, and profits and taking it to the next level. We'll see! Oh, and perhaps write a book called Woman's Search for Meaning. ;) 

My Company Mission is to help women look and feel unstoppable as they Pursue True Happiness. My Company Vision is: (1) to revolutionize how global businesses scale and (2) to strive toward global gender equality.  

My Guiding Philosophy is based on a three-prong approach aligned with the three general ways to view time: past, present, future. 

  • Everything always happens/(ed) for a great reason. (Past)  
  • You're always in the right place at the right time. If not, you wouldn't be here. (Present) 
  • No regrets. Ever. (Future)

My Beliefs 

  1. I believe true happiness is a lifelong journey of serving others through YOUR gift to our world (and that can mean from starting a billion dollar social impact company to just smiling and sending positive energy to someone).  
  2. I believe in the power of community
  3. I believe in the Okinawan icharibachōde spirit - once we meet, we are brothers and sisters. 
  4. I believe in active gratitude
  5. I believe in having fun.
  6. I believe in embracing challenges as opportunities to grow. 
  7. I believe in humility balanced with self-confidence
  8. I believe in keeping an open-mind.
  9. I believe in abundance which comes from innovation and creativity.
  10. I believe in always learning and unlearning to become the best version of myself. 

say hello

I sold $5,000 of paper cranes door-to-door at 13 years old.

At 13, I was selected for the People-to-People Student Ambassador program to England, Ireland and Wales. My parents didn't hand me $5000 for the program, so I had to get creative. I folded paper cranes, stapled them to a piece of colored construction paper with a note about me, my motivations and program details on it. I knocked on doors and sold them for $5 a piece until I hit my $5000 goal. It took every weekend for 9 months. 

I learned about work ethic.  

learn about people-to-people

I sold $50,000 of knives at 17 years old.

At 17, I sold CUTCO knives using in-home demonstrations and lead referrals. I ranked as the #1 sales representative in my Pennsylvania office. At 18, I started my own office in New Jersey recruiting, training and managing a sales force of 60 college students. This was the most influential experience in my life. 

I learned about mindset being everything.

learn about cutco

I helped generate $500,000 in revenue at 19 years old.

At 19, I interned at a digital advertising agency called Digitas through the American Association of Advertising Agencies' MAIP. Out of the highly selective MAIP national cohort, I received the Multicultural Excellence Award for helping to generate $500,000 in additional revenue for a client's social media campaign strategy. 

I learned about corporate relationships with VIP clients. 

learn about 4A's MAIP

I called every MAKISHI in the Peruvian Yellow Pages at 22 years old.

I am second generation Japanese-American. My parents are from Okinawa, Japan. I was the first in my family to be born in Hershey, Pennsylvania.

Identity always intrigued me.

I was selected as an Okinawan Government Scholar (沖縄県費留学生) and spent 1 year in Okinawa at Ryukyu University to learn about my cultural roots. 

In Okinawa, I discovered a 300-page book of all my ancestors' names dating back to the 17th century. The book was organized by regions of the world to where my ancestors and relatives immigrated to over the years. 

I read about relatives that immigrated to Peru before World War Two. I was curious. So, went to Peru to find them.

I published a call-to-action article in the local Peruvian-Japanese newspaper and called every MAKISHI in the Lima Yellow Pages and... found them! 

I learned about my heritage. 

My 400-year family tree (Okinawa, Japan)

My 400-year family tree (Okinawa, Japan)

I led a 20-person digital team from 7 countries at 24 years old.

At 24, I served as Chair for AJET National Council, consisting of 20 members across Japan, to build a national community of Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program participants comprised of 4000+ professionals from 40 countries. Elected by my peers, I served as the liaison between JET participants and the Japanese central government including Japan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Internal Communications, and Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology.

I learned about leadership.

Learn about ajet

I cycled 5,000 miles across 5 countries for 5 months at 26 years old.

At 26, I solo cycled the Silk Road from China to Uzbekistan for the Silk Peace Cycle. My tag line was 5000 Miles for 5000 Smiles. I aimed to collect photos of 5000 persons smiling holding a whiteboard with the word PEACE written in each person's native language to bridge local and global community together. I am a contributor to the UNESCO Silk Road project

I learned about resiliency.  

learn about silk peace cycle

I sold $30,000+ of dresses in 30 days at 30 years old.

At 30, I product designed a dress called Little Bamboo Dress with 5 pockets that packs into itself. I invented it from a personal frustration of clothing options for my carry-on after traveling to over 50 countries. I sourced material (bamboo rayon hence the dress name), established relationships with manufacturers, and managed the entire production process including guerrilla marketing research by surveying my target demographic on the streets, in coffee shops and subways to determine product colors and price points.

I learned about appreciating the process.   

learn about little bamboo dress