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Lessons:

My Journey As A Serial Entrepreneur

LESSONs:

My Journey As A Serial Entrepreneur

  "I can remember making two significant decisions early in my life."



First, I decided I was going to be an entrepreneur and own my own company – GOOD DECISION. 

My farther and grandfather were entrepreneurs and both of them owned their own companies. Growing up, it was all I ever saw and knew.

Second, I decided that I was going to make $10 million dollars and retire by the age of 40 BAD DECISION. 

It didn't matter what I did or how I did it, only that THAT was the outcome.

  "Fast forward a decade or so and, at 18 years old, I was off to West Point."


Yes, the United States Military Academy.

Now if you know me, you know I am the LAST person you would ever guess went there. A California kid from a non-military family with no interest in the Army would surely get eaten alive at an institution that produced Generals Patton, MacArthur and Eisenhower, just to name a few. 

But it WAS along the “fast track to retirement”.

So, I went, I graduated and I spent 4 miserable years as a combat engineer officer at Ft. Stewart, Georgia.
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Graciously, time passed. It was an easy to decision to leave and get back to my dream of chasing money at all cost. 

That found me taking a job as a consultant at a company called KPA, a tiny compliance consulting firm in the automotive industry…boring!

As a West Point graduate, I had my pick of 50 jobs, but this one was special. The company had 200 overdue accounts and the owner would pay me handsomely to bring the accounts current.  

It was 1990 and that was the first year I made $100,000.

It was a cashfest and I was hooked! The next year, $125,000, then $150,000. 

"Then…I quit! Well, I tried to anyway."

Entrepreneurs can make MILLIONS, not just a measly $100,000 - $150,000 a year. I’ll never retire by 40 at this rate and why should this guy make all of the money? 

Turns out “this guy”, Kip, ended up being my closest friend, and even crazier, I really did enjoy the work.
Just as I was ready to quit he told me about his plan to take the company national. He offered me half of the new company, a chance to lead the national launch and his checkbook to do it. 

The rest is history.

"20+ offices, 100+ employees and 5,000+ clients later we sold KPA.
At age 39. I retired."

No wife and kids, no friends, no “Plan B”…just money. I thought people who said “money can’t buy you happiness” only said it because they were broke. 

Turns out I was wrong. 

For the next several years I sat on the Board of KPA (I remained the 3rd largest shareholder) and watched two billionaires triple the size of the Company in 1/10th of the time it would have taken me. I was stunned.

These guys were serious businessmen and they weren’t doing it just for the money. 

One day I I got the nerve to ask one of them, Pat Welsh, why he stilled worked when he clearly did not need the money.

"It's fun!", he said. 

That's it? 

"That's it!", Pat said.

Huh? Is that even possible? Be wealthy and still want to build a business?

THAT was the second everything changed...
 

"Then, in 2009 I made what again sounded like a crazy decision.
I went back to college to get my MBA."

This time I was doing it for ME, not the money (but I WILL take the money!). I wanted back in the game.

I worked harder than I ever have in my life at the Rady School of Management and helped everybody I could. Yes, I did end up class valedictorian, but it wasn’t just because I had the highest GPA. I was voted that by my classmates because I had helped so many of them make progress in their entrepreneurial journey.

"For that reason, it remains one of the greatest accomplishments of my life."

Next lesson...

What if helping people can feel good, not just make you money?  What?!
So, I joined Tech Coast Angels, the world’s largest angel investing organization where I could help more entrepreneurs. I also started my own digital marketing firm where I could help entrepreneurs harness the power of the emerging digital marketing world. 

In 2014, after a quarter century run, KPA was sold to a private equity firm and that journey had officially come to an end.

Something miraculous happened next. I met Lori, the love of my life. 

We got married in 2016 and have two beautiful stepdaughters. We split our time between La Jolla, California and an amazing cabin in Northwest Montana. 

The guy who only cared about "chasing the money" found something MUCH better…trust me.

In 2018 I sold my digital marketing firm and went “all in” on the two things that I enjoy the most 1) building 8 and 9-figure companies (and fast!) 2) helping my entrepreneur friends do the same.

After three wild years of what I can only describe as a "serial entrepreneur binge" (ecommerce brands, SAAS companies, NFTs, crypto, etc.) I had t
he coolest and craziest idea I have EVER had (I have had MANY... more crazy than cool though). 


What if I scaled a brand from $0 to exit in 36 months...regardless of the exit price?!

And, what if I will documented the  entire process and shared it with my friends so they could simply follow along and rapidly scale and exit their businesses too?


We Love Doggos was launched on January 1, 2022.

Shortly thereafter I launched my mastermind, the Golden Gorillas Guild, as "home base" for this once-in-a-lifetime experiment.

Honestly, I have ZERO idea what happens after the exit...
I can promise you this though, I am NEVER retiring again.

I get it Pat, this is WAY too much fun!

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