How did you get to where you are today?
It all started with a class called “Entrepreneurial Communications” taught by Professor Steven Peterson PhD. The course was incredibly empowering and helpful. I learned how to make pitch decks, to sell with the why, and even create a business. The next summer, my cousins and I began a company called The Odd Job Bros.
What was your toughest obstacle and how did you overcome it?
Dropping out of UCLA was challenging. My parents were supportive, but a lot of others weren’t. I needed to fend for myself. It was either learn and close deals or forfeit eating for a few days. I overcame this by doing two things. First, wholeheartedly focusing on my work. Long days and “no days off”. The learning curve is completely vertical - there is literally never too much you can learn and time is always the enemy. Secondly, I surrounded myself with great people. There’s no such thing as a one man band. It’s much better to jam with your friends.
What’s the key to staying focused & motivated?
I’m actually not a fan of motivation. I used to be the guy who posted inspirational memes and quotes all the time. This type of motivation comes from outside oneself which causes a dependency. You don’t want dependencies. Intrinsic motivation is more powerful because it’s within yourself.
What is the best piece of advice you have ever received?
“I know I can
Be what I wanna be
If I work hard at it
I'll be where I wanna be “
What actionable advice do you have for someone who is looking to start a new venture?
Growing a business is a multiplicative model. As opposed to a additive model, where the system still works with a failure, in a multiplicative model, if there is a zero (terminal error), the system breaks. This is best represented mathematically: 10 * 10 * 0 * 10 = 0.
How do we get more women leaders?
It all starts with empowerment. Everyone, across domains, generations, genders, and races should empower women to act on roles of leadership. Sheryl Sandberg’s book Lean In does a great job illustrating the concept (fantastic book, too). The second piece, equally as critical, is action. You must walk your talk, as they say.