Here’s a list of things I tried to to do, mostly in college, and just after. They were either not at the right time, not with the right people, or in some instances, not for the right reasons. For one or all of these reasons, those businesses failed. Some at the idea stage, some at the business card stage (still the idea stage), another at the conferences in New York stage (Still the business card stage), and some because I got royally screwed by a partner. (At the fund-securing stage)
All of my 6 “almosts” had great high level thinking, but I lived in the clouds too much and not in enough in the dirt, among other things. (Paraphrasing Gary Vaynerchuck)
Knowledge without labor is profitless. Knowledge with labor is genius.
– Gordon B. Hinckley
This resulted in improper execution, or to be honest not enough execution. But the most important thing was I leapt. I was naive enough to try. And that is an underestimated principle of success. I didn’t know what to do as a kid with no family or friends in business; no one to turn to or guide me. This was all during and right after my undergrad. I definitely learned what not to do and at the right time; when I could afford to lose big.
Here is a list of my 6 “almosts”.
- Sapphire Investing – Real estate investor (With no money to invest, haha)
- Surf Kingdom Hawaii – Surf museum (Not even a surfer yet, haha)
- Brothers In Lawn – Sod supply and installation company. (Lack of dirt under my sod – not enough execution)
- Estate Boulder Supply – Boulder supply shop (Sold 1 company on a load of boulders, no one else wanted it. Not the right market, model, and timing)
- Paean Capital – Private equity start-up right out of college. (Never researched so hard in my life, and produced a rock sold business plan I never did anything with, and decided not to pursue this one mostly because it was out of my league)
- Lokahi Sustainable Village Hawaii – Economic diversification project for the State of Hawaii (Large land development and business incubator project. (Partner stole the deal, then a year later I found out it didn’t work out. Classic.)
I was then denied re-entry to the United States
…and the fire grew.
After that ordeal, I started an unlikely business: 7th times a charm, and there has been a handful of businesses since, and many to more to come.