Investments and Dreams…

For the longest time I have been saying that Entrepreneurs must be willing to invest in their business.  This is accomplished using a lot of patience and with a deep understanding that this is a long-term play.  Most of the time, even seasoned executives will not accept a project if they can’t see a payoff or an NPV calculation in the near future.

The problem is what psychologists call Anchoring (Yes, Erick Dane, I was not asleep in your class).  What anchoring basically tells you is that you can’t seem to get over the fact that once you set a fair value or a realistic expectation on an event, it is very difficult to accept any other value for it.  So for example, we are so used to seeing a Coke worth 50 cents, that when we see the price in the vending machines go to $1.00 we think we are being ripped-off, as well as if we see a 25-cent Coke can we think it is a deal.  Think Netflix at $9 vs $13 and they had to return to the old pricing.  Well, the same thing happens to seasoned investors when you tell them a project will be taking 1 year before it starts paying off, they think you are crazy.

So the problem is that they are seasoned executives and they are not thinking as Entrepreneurs.  If they were, they would realize that they are dealing with people with ample vision and dreamers.  Dreams do not have constraints and vision is limited only to those that dare not dream.  I have investments in Hispanic Trade that are almost as old as the company and they are still work in progresses, with a large chunk of expenses already dedicated to them, and they are still not giving us income.  I expect them to be there a while more.

So, think like an Entrepreneur and you will not be a slave to the Cash Flow statement, think like an Executive and the Balance Sheet will be your Bible.  Think like both and you will be successful, eventually.

Keep Calm and Stay Humble…


Just as you think things start to settle down after your first year, you come to the reality and by the way, a very harsh realization, that challenges are always present and that we need to keep looking at the future in a completely and ever-changing environment.

Entrepreneurship is not for everybody.  We always think it is easy because so many people have their own businesses and are successful. But I want you to know and understand that a lot of the successful ones take a lot of shortcuts.  And a lot of the unsuccessful ones, do not.  We live in a world where ethics are often compromised, and in my point of view, a dollar or a million of them is not worth more than my principles.

So, going back to changes; if you think about the amount of resources, expenses and commitments that could be saved by dancing around the lines vs the ones you actually invest when you do things by the book you get a very good idea of why some companies can’t pass that 2 year mark that is so commonly referred as the “you made it” sign.  And if you think about it on the long run, companies that establish a false expense base are dreaming when they think they can correct it later on, – it will not happen, in fact it will get worse.  The more committed they are to certain results and shortcuts, the stronger they will reinforce them.

Each and everyone makes their choice on the type of business they will have and how they choose to grow it.  It is not unfair for people to not follow the rules. It is highly unethical and illegal in most cases, but it is their right to choose how straight or crooked their company will be.  Why is it not unfair?  Because those few that make it following all the rules, can count on a future thriving and solid business, those that don’t are set for disappointment and long-run issues. Unfairness, that is only an excuse for yourself in the why you are not being successful in your business, you need to go somewhere else with that trash-thinking, not here.

We are owners of our destinies and the challenges we get are the result of being entrepreneurs, no one else’s. Suck it up, keep working and follow your principles, let’s see where they take us.

Keep Calm and Stay Humble…


John Lennon

I am sure you have been in your car and a real cool song comes over the radio and you love this song, you have heard it a thousand times and it’s a classic; what’s better than a John Lennon song.  Full of great lyrics and piano tunes, it is a great symphony of sound and voice.  Then you listen to it like you never have; this was me today and I was so shocked because it was ME all last year!

Watching the wheels

People say I’m crazy
Doing what I’m doing
Well, they give me all kinds of warnings
To save me from ruin
When I say that I’m okay, well they look at me kinda strange
“Surely, you’re not happy now, you no longer play the game”

People say I’m lazy
Dreaming my life away
Well they give me all kinds of advice
Designed to enlighten me
When I tell them that I’m doing fine watching shadows on the wall
“Don’t you miss the big time boy, you’re no longer on the ball?”

I’m just sitting here watching the wheels go round and round
I really love to watch them roll
No longer riding on the merry-go-round
I just had to let it go

Ah, people ask me questions
Lost in confusion
Well, I tell them there’s no problem
Only solutions
Well, they shake their heads and they look at me, as if I’ve lost my mind
I tell them there’s no hurry, I’m just sitting here doing time

I’m just sitting here watching the wheels go round and round
I really love to watch them roll
No longer riding on the merry-go-round

I just had to let it go
I just had to let it go
I just had to let it go

Keep Calm and Stay Humble…

Happy Blog-iversary!


Can you believe we have been blogging for a year now?  YES!  One year ago I set out to document the adventure that I was undertaking.  As I mentioned in that blog, my brother gave me the idea to record and share this journey, and man! am I grateful he did; it has been extraordinary and now I have a way to share a lot of memories even if I can’t recall them.

So on to reality, what a year!  Let’s try and remember:

  1. Started the company
  2. Spent 3 months to get a contract for Business Development
  3. Spent 4 months to get a contract for Sales and Marketing
  4. Hired 4 employees during the year of which 2 remain.
  5. Took us over 6 months to get commission checks.
  6. Have not made a salary, will start in January 2017.
  7. Broke as I have never been and with a good-sized debt, almost 6 figures.
  8. Have lost money 11 months out of 12 – this month was different!
  9. Have gained 5 pounds, up to 180.
  10. My bald circle is now about 4 inches wide on the top of my head. I am a lost cause on this one – genetics.
  11. Finished my second Master’s. It was in Analytics. It was hard and very technical.
  12. Improved my golf game by about 8 strokes, not playing much but focusing more. Still a high handicapper, hitting high 90’s.
  13. Am no longer an absent parent, spend much more time with my kids and in their lives. They know we are poor and they do not mind. It is the joke in the family and we are all cool with it.  The other day we went to Wendy’s and they were thrilled as we do not go out much anymore.  How funny!
  14. Am no longer an absent husband. My wife is my partner and we have a wonderful relationship.  We spend a lot of time together and we enjoy every minute of it.  Life is great on that front. Oh… and she is waaaay cute.
  15. Am no longer stressing over others’ decisions – only we control our destiny. The good and bad decisions come from us and we own them. We do not make excuses for someone else, only for our actions.
  16. Am no longer a decision-making robot. When you make decisions for someone else you have to be always looking for their direction and stated best interest, even if they do not agree with yours.  You have a responsibility – moral as well as legal – to fight for them without regards for others.  This I did very well for many years and it won me over a lot of people that do not like me.  They are right to feel this way, because it means I did my job without regard for personal interest.  Loyalty though is hardly admirable when people see you on your own, because they relate you to your actions in the past and that is how they treat you.  I don’t blame them. Did what I had to and that is done.
  17. Am no longer unhappy or frustrated, and this is the real treasure I have found. My life is so great and full of joy because I have made the right choice. My company is growing slowly and I project a great 2017.  Next year’s blog should be full of positive numbers and much more experiences.  For now I will tell you that this whole experience has tested me in a way I never thought. I feel healthy on the inside like I have not felt since I was in high school and I fell as if I was in my first job, working hard to come ahead.  The difference, and for those that know me well, you will like this:
    1. I work about 35-40 hours a week
    2. I have lunch with my wife almost every day
    3. I walk my kids to the bus and to school
    4. I spend more than 2-3 hours per day with my kids now
    5. I have dinner with my family at the table almost every night
    6. My face has not been red in a while
    7. I went to the office in jeans and a t-shirt on Thursday
    8. I wear loafers almost everyday
    9. I am relaxed
    10. I sometimes get bored when my kids get tired of me.

Thank you so much for 1 year of reading my stories.

Keep Calm and Stay Humble…