Jeffery Wang, the 114th person I’ve met on my quest to have lunch with 500 strangers, started lunching with strangers two decades before me.

When Jeff was 10, he moved from Taiwan to New Zealand, before moving to Sydney to attend university. That meant he began his adulthood with no friends and no network. His solution? Sit down next to strangers in the uni cafeteria and introduce himself.

Jeff did computer science and actuarial studies, but he moved into sales after leaving university. During his 15-plus years in sales, he’s sometimes found himself at odds with the hard-sell approach. Jeff prefers to get to know the other person, understand their needs – and then, if he can help, offer a solution to their problem.

It fits in perfectly with Jeff’s philosophy on life, which is to build relationships, look for common ground and seek to understand before being understood.

Another thing that impressed me about Jeff was his communication skills. Jeff has made a conscious effort to learn how to present his ideas more clearly and concisely. That’s made him a better thinker, a better writer and a better salesman.