Be Introspective

Be Introspective

Wade Eyerly

Devin Miller

The Inventive Journey

Podcast for Entrepreneurs

11/16/2020

Be Introspective

You need to be really really introspective. I know a lot of CEO's that were really happy as the number two in their previous company. As the COO, or CFO or whatever and they are miserable as CEO's. I have hired a number of folks who will tell you they want to be in start ups, who desperately want this to be the right path for them and they should be working at Bank of America. There is a very different support structure that comes with a big company and if your mind set is how to I extract the greatest value for me from this company you are going to have a hard time with a start up.

 


The Inventive Journey

Starting and growing a business is a journey. On The Inventive Journey, your host, Devin Miller walks with startups along their different journeys startups take to success (or failure). You also get to hear from featured guests, such as venture firms and angel investors, that provide insight on the paths to a successful inventive journey.

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you need to be really really introspective you need to um i know a lot of ceos that were really happy as the number two at their previous company as a ceo or a cfo or whatever and they're miserable as ceos i know a lot of i have hired going back to the previous question i've hired a number of folks who will tell you they want to be in startups who desperately this is the right path for them and they should be working at bank of america um like there's there's a very different sort of support structure that comes with a big company and uh and if your mindset is how do i extract value the greatest value for me from this company you're gonna have a hard time [Music] everyone this is devin miller here with another episode of the inventive journey i am your host devin miller the serial entrepreneur that has built several startups into seven and eight figure businesses as well as the founder and ceo of miller i p law where we help startups and small businesses with their patents and trademarks and today we have another fun guest on the episode wait ever or i was gonna say everly but it's how do you pronounce it now because it's eye early what's that it's eye early yeah entirely i was gonna see everly that i'm wait wait a minute that's a why not a b so wade wade irely and wade uh has an a a cl i'll call it an eclectic because i don't know what else to call it background in the sense that he has done everything from a first of all an lds mission or a mission for the church of jesus christ of latter-day saints whichever you like to call or mormon um in russia so we have that in common i didn't serve in russia but i did do an lbs mission as well in taiwan so we have that commonality but in addition to that he's been a white house staffer which sounds very interesting to me and i have no idea if it is interesting but it sounds interesting um turned then he was an intel officer for a period of time he then started his own airline and dived into all that and now he's invented a new weight a new type of insurance for the insurance industry and i won't steal too much of his thunder he'll get a talk tell a little bit more about what the new type of insurance is so more lots of things to talk about great conversation i'm looking forward to with that welcome to the podcast wade thanks so much thanks for having me i'm i'm excited to do this so i gave up or gave kind of a brief overview but maybe you know we talked a little bit about starting he kind of went to central missouri state for college i think you said you were you graduated at 16 in high school so you're even earlier than that but maybe give us a few uh a background a little bit more on how your journey started and let's have a great conversation yeah i mean i was i was a little younger than average probably when you when you graduate college and uh and we moved my senior year and i graduated semester so i i didn't actually know anybody i didn't have like a counselor or anybody who knew me i'm the oldest kid my dad went to eight semesters of open enrollment at the local church school my mom didn't go to college and so i didn't um i didn't know you were supposed to apply so i rolled into a college about an hour from my house in august and asked how to sign up for a dorm and uh they're like you know it should be in your packet and i was like uh you know was it in mine you know ten minutes later they're like did you apply so um i got it how do i apply i'll go do it right now just tell me what i need to do and i'll do it right and they're like no no buddy you got to do that like february man so uh i got into college because the kind-hearted registrar took pity on me and uh so i went to school yeah about an hour from home i grew up in independence missouri and went to central missouri state and got was real lucky to be there and and uh you know it's paid really good dividends over the course of my life you know so you and so you went to missouri state and wanted and i don't think i asked what did you graduate in or what was your major so i didn't have a major until six months before i graduated because i'm just that on the ball and so i i just took classes i thought were interesting and you know trying to learn a little bit more about the world all the time and i went about two and a half years and i went on that mission to moscow and then came back and we didn't have a russian program for instance and so i took some courses from byu and i had all these russian credits and they didn't know where to park them and what to do with something so um so i ended up with a double major in international economic policy and in cross-cultural relations so i took a lot of languages i took a lot of econ and they kind of uh i think they custom built that both of those majors for me so so you you so you finally six months before you graduated got your major you said okay i know what i want to be when i grow up or you thought you knew what you wanted to be when you grew up um which i also think is funny kudos to you that you were able to maybe you should have been a sales person that you showed up to college you didn't even apply and you were able to talk your way in or guilt your way in or find the right person in order to get into college without having to go through the normal application process so i think that speaks merits into your sales ability of um but with that you graduated and i think or what did you do after you graduated i think you said you went into governmental work for a period of time yeah so i was the first graduating class after 9 11. so i graduated in in spring of 002 right and everybody was applying to government work so i did the same and i was hired conditional on a security clearance and that clearance didn't come through for five and a half years so i went out to dc i did you know a half dozen different things i did like media tracking where before the internet right like we would track where you'd shown up in the media and give you your news clips and stuff i i uh i did i traveled with the vice president managed this press on the road there at the white house went to graduate school and jumped over a whole bunch of people you jumped over too many interesting things so i'm going to have to jump in and interrupt one thing i forgot to mention that you mentioned when we talked before the podcast was when you got into government to work you had to do a 3.0 gpa is that right yeah so when i was in school i mean in order to be hired by the federal government you had to have a 3.0 and i was a i was a terrible student so i had a 257 gpa before i left on my mission and i'd been just going to school for two and a half years so i had a ton of credits at 2.5 and so in order to get a you know cumulative 3.0 i had to pretty much nail the last year and a half so but i also candidly just grew up a lot while i was in russia and so it came back and kind of thought i wanted to go into the government and have a career in the foreign service at the time and so um you know worked my tail off at school got better grades and and you know kind of barely cleared the hurdle i think i graduated like a 315 or something hey well hey kudos to you to say hey i got a year and a half i got to get this up significantly with all these credits and you figured out how to do it so again a good work ethic and a smart way to figure it out so you did that and one of the other things you said you kind of just jumped over at least for now we're not going to get into talking about politics or which side of the aisle we're on but you worked you people could probably get an idea versus they're based on the people that you work for but you worked on the campaign for a period of time both with mitt romney and dick cheney is that right correct yeah so i i traveled ahead of dick cheney and helped manage his press on the road there's little advanced teams that go out and i was on one of those teams uh and then i was a fundraiser for mitt for both of his presidential campaigns so so is that now that sounds exciting maybe it's completely boring i have no idea but you know at least it's name recognizable people mitt romney and dick cheney certainly whether you're on that side of the aisle or you hate that side of the aisle or anywhere in between you at least recognize the name so was it exciting to work on those kind of big campaigns was it much more of a boring day-to-day stuff or how does how does that go i have no idea what a campaign staffer does yeah i mean it was um i would say it was an awesome job for a young guy right like i travel sometimes 27 days a month you know you're just constantly gone and you'd leap frog ahead of him and get everything squared away and then he sort of lands in air force two and jumps out of the plane and you brief him in the motorcade and he pops out and looks good that's the job and then he takes off on air force two and goes home and you leap frog to the next location so um you know you're constantly on the road and it was i i mean if i'd done it for mick jagger they would have called me a roadie so it's not like it's a sexy job um but it uh it sure felt cool at the time and you felt like you were doing something important and uh yeah i mean i highly recommend that people have those opportunities that they take them you know no i i i think it sounds it now i don't think i could the way you described it i don't think i could ever do that with my wife and kids and everything but to your point if you're a single guy and or a single person and you're wanting to do it sounds like a fun a fun job or has a lot of reward to it so you did that for a period of time and i and then i think that if i remember when we talked about while you were doing that or shortly thereafter or whatnot five years after you applied for your security clearance it came back and you finally got cleared yeah so i then went to i left that dc in 05 and i went to graduate school at byu for two years and got a degree in public policy and uh it was sort of towards the end of that they called and said hey good news your security clearance is through do you still want to you know come work in intelligence and i said yeah and and broke up with my canadian girlfriend and uh and moved out to dc after i graduated and spent the next i don't know two and a half three years probably um you know working for the government trying to do good things make everybody safer so and how and how did that just as a complete side how did that conversation go with the canadian girlfriend was it well i love you you're a great girlfriend but i like my job better how did you break that news to her i'm taking a job that suggests maybe we're not meant to be together i i mean i was probably more callous than i yeah if i had life to do over again there's a lot of things i'd do differently but that would maybe be a conversation where you might you might have been a little bit or take down it takes a little bit different attack yeah yeah i just i was just thinking i'm like well if i was dating someone it's really serious and i'm like well i love you but i like my job better so yeah yeah it's been an awkward conversation to be sure i'm sure it was so good but it sounds like it all worked out at the end so you did that for a period of time work went and hunted down the bad guys and uh and then i think you said that you went to an mba school in stanford or remind me how you that all interplayed with things with uh stanford yeah so i came back from iraq in 2010 had a baby two weeks later and it was time to you know do something else for a living so i uh i came out of the field and i started um i became an economist at the at the pentagon for the j-2 and the chairman of the joint chiefs covering europe and nato as their economy struggled um and as i was looking to transition out of government work then and so i was applying to business schools and the first year i applied to eight schools and they all let me know they were very very full with actually qualified folks and so i reapplied the second year to a handful of them and and got into school out in california so the the plan was to move the family to palo alto and go do that and then my little brother was a pilot and needed a job he graduated embry riddle he's you know sitting on a lot of flight you know flight time debt they burn jet fuel in college at embry riddle and so um i said you know what's it going to take to keep you in the air you know you know what you want to do you've been blessed with that i never knew that you know what's it going to take and you know he's young and flippant he goes i don't know buy a plane start an airline and i was like okay i'll look into it and hung up the phone and uh and you know a couple months later there we were i had actually the same trip where i interviewed at stanford i'd gone down to la and opening a called mucker labs i met with will shu and eric granola and they offered me a spot and so we ended up starting an airline in january i moved out to la my wife said look i'm uh the family's gonna move once so you figure out if this airline thing is gonna work and if it doesn't move to la and if not we'll meet in palo alto and so i had uh you know three four months to figure it out and we raised some money really that just let you choose because i know it might have been first of all i like how you just said oh i gotta i got it into a school in california stanford is is a fairly well known reputable school so it was more than just a school of california but you know was it really just that much all would you but i didn't go so it's like you know like i don't know how much i get to use that that brand when i didn't actually go but yeah it's a great school that'd be like saying i gotta i got into harvard for harvard law which i didn't so you know but if i would say yeah i could have gone to harvard i decided not it still speaks volumes to your smart guy they obviously got into a good school so i give you at least a point or a couple points for getting into stanford so how did you make that because now i'll take it well so i want to give you one little anecdote when i called my dad to tell him i'm like hey i got into stanford business school right and he's all excited for me and then a minute later he says so which one like what do you mean he's like well there's a stanford connecticut and there's a stanford kentucky and i'm like no dad stanford with an n in palo alto i'm like does it does it seem like a bigger deal now and he's like well i was just excited for you wherever you're to go i knew it was something you wanted to do like completely non-profit like the one that everybody knows that you see on tv that's stanford that's the one yeah um he just never put much stock in brand and and was like he said he was gonna be happy for me wherever i went so the closest i ever got to stanford was i worked for a law firm that was in palo alto so i used i always run in the morning so i went and ran up to the stanford campus i've been to stanford but they never they never said i could go to school there so but it's a beautiful spot and so with that almost you know so you got stanford which is a great nba school certainly well written rate ranked and has name recognition or he got this hey my brother said he needed five planes i'll start a startup business and or start an airline how did you make that decision or how did you weigh those against each other so i wanted to start a business when i was leaving the government and uh you know once you form a family you start doing things together you get to make better decisions because there's a check on your you know it i'm very very risk tolerant and so uh there's a nice check that makes sure i don't take crazy risks and one of the things she said is you know i think you'll be better at it if you go to business school first right get some training i don't think i took two business classes in my undergrad right like i just it wasn't my world and so um so i thought you know she's right so i've applied all these business schools and that's what we were doing and then when the incubator accepted us she said okay well like give it a shot and i kind of convinced her that the rounding error on the debt i mean if you're gonna take out a quarter million dollars to go to business school like three extra months of no income or five extra months no income was sort of a rounding error on the whole thing so i could try it in january if it didn't work in july or august you know we're up in palo alto and so that was kind of what we did was i will give it a shot and then in may or june we you know we raised four and a quarter i think a million dollars and so we were off to the races and family like moved out to la and santa monica with us and uh you know i ran that company for two years and then we brought in another um ceo to run it and i was essentially not useful anymore um because there's somebody else running it day to day and so i i think of it a lot like that business school experience you know except that i got paid to run a company for two years and instead of paying somebody else to learn it but it had to be a lot of the same lessons you would learn in business school and i went i've done both so i'll give you the insight and i think that the boots up so i did i can't remember if we mentioned this before but so i ended up getting four degrees when i was doing all the studying so i did an engine or electrical engineering chinese an mba and a law degree and i did those both all in parallel so i did the undergraduate i did two degrees and then i did law and mba at the same time and i would say your education it as far as i think there are merits to both but to get boot or to get the best training you're going to have to dive in and just learn it no matter what mba school is much more if you wanted to come in and help a business to grow explore new channels and everything else but i don't know that it really prepared you as well as maybe they could have for startup so i i give you good i think that you made the right decision for whatever that or whatever that's worth well i i've certainly been happy with the path that said it is a little like breaking up with a girl you still love so i uh there's there's an element of me that still wishes i was you know walking around with a sweatshirt with trees on it but um they were to their credit when i came to him and said hey i wanted to defer because we just raised this money and uh you know in the admissions office there she said look like we don't really do that we can't do that but honestly like you just raised four million dollars for an airline why don't you just come back and teach someday and i i reflect i reflected that a lot later because it was the classiest like she made me feel good about the fact that i was walking away from this thing i'd clearly put a lot into and uh and sort of validated me like it was just like the the best possible way to handle it because it was hard to let that go and yeah that's an awesome answer i'm impressed that they would they would have the wherewithal to say hey you should probably you've already done better we can teach you go chase your dream you've already done a great job so that's awesome yeah all it did was make me more impressed with stanford so which also makes it all the harder to look back and say i didn't do it so so you did that and i think you said you started in one airline you were running it for a while and then you did or you you grew it and then you stepped back somebody else took over and didn't you say you did a second airline that wasn't successful or that you screwed up yeah so we we launched another one uh similar model different operating models similar customers so we invented subscription flying two grand a month all you can fly and uh so we went out to new york and launched that and we made a couple bad decisions and killed that frankly like we we did it wrong the the market works and the model works and we screwed it up uh and so as i was shopping those assets sort of with my tail between my legs uh i uh i ran into a guy kenny dickner who runs wheels up which is a billion dollar aviation startup and he's been he was the founder of marquis jet invented jet cars became vice chairman of berkshire hathaway just like a storied guy and and he very flatteringly said look the asset we would want here is you what'll it take and uh and so i said give me a month to put my employees in jobs and then i'll give you a call and and so i ended up there uh as md of new ventures new products new markets government affairs mma just sort everything you do that isn't the core business uh was sort of put into a bucket and that i could go run with uh and then after a year or two there as they began preparing to ipo those are all the things you also stop doing as you as you prep for an ipo because it's all about hitting consistent numbers now and so that's when i rolled off and began to build this insurance company but i got to spend another year and a half or two um sort of studying under some really successful aviation folks which was also great no that's that's awesome so in in kudos to you because i've got to imagine everything i've ever read and listened to is the aviation industry is incredibly hard to get in there and to be successful because a lot of times you know low margins and you're they're very very dominant on whether what the fuel prices are and and everything else and i think i'll give it to kudos to you since you said mitt romney and dick cheney i'm guessing i know which side of the aisle you're on but i think donald trump tried to start an airline industry and also failed didn't he i think i think trump airline was a thing for a hot minute and didn't really make it there's a lot that didn't really make it for sure that's true but i was going to say you did better than triplet airlines so i was going to give you kudos so so you did that and now you can say i've got an idea so how did you come up with the idea how did you get into insurance because it seems like it's a different industry a different market and something new to jump into so i'm not a big believer in the value of related experience generally so um i think it's easier to learn a new industry than people give credit but i do think that so i i really believe in innovating in heavily regulated space so there's a startling amount of innovating in airlines that actually plays in in insurance but what happened was one of my pilots was moving boxes and hurt his back and ultimately he had to begin taking pain meds to sit in a chair for eight hours a day uh and in most jobs you can you know have a standing desk or get up and walk to the water cooler or you know whatever it is uh but pilot's the rare job where you have to sit in a chair for eight hours a day like there's just no alternative and so he he ultimately lost his career over a total fluke you know and i remember describing it to another co-founder as uh you know when you run a start like you just love everybody there it's family you know and how tragic it was that he'd made this investment right he's probably sitting on a quarter million dollars in debt again from embry riddle or wherever he learned to fly right and and it just wasn't going to pay off for him and it was that framing that helped me see that higher education is essentially the largest uninsured investment market in the world right you borrow five 10 20 times your net worth you're 18 years old it's the first legal contract you can sign um and you and everybody tells you to borrow as much as you can you can right and you borrow it from the mob uh what it's not mob money but it's completely non-dischargeable right like you can't get out yeah you get through bankruptcy you rip off dave ramsey he always calls it the kgb because you can never it never leaves you alone and follows you forever yeah you can't get out of it so it's kind of dead 18 right and then and you you make this investment and then you just hope it works right like pretend time on stock and just like hope gonna be okay and because higher ed works so it works really really well but if it happens to not work for you right you you anchor your market rate at a low point right you graduate into a down economy there's not much you can do it's gonna take you 21 years on average to pay back your student loans like that's a generation your kids say mom or dad can you i spend my loans um and you end up sort of not able to get out from under my just didn't work for you and the wealthy effectively have always self-insured so if you go to undergrad you graduate in the wrong year and it doesn't work for you you uh you you double down right if nine out of ten times it works then you just spin that wheel again so they they go to law school business school right they hide from the economy in a socially acceptable way for two or three years and and try to emerge at a different point but if you're a first generation student first generation american you know underrepresented minority otherwise poor right you don't have that option you got to go to work now you put everything in you got to college you did it all right it's not your fault you graduate but it just kind of doesn't pay off so even if you come from a decently well-do family you get married you have kids you have responsibilities and even if you're doing well it can be one where you know that it can it can crash in in a second so i like it the way you put it absolutely yeah so we we uh we said all right if it's an uninsured investment market then we should be able to build a hedge fund an insurance on it that says if it doesn't work for you we're going to catch you up and make you whole the same way that you know we've all got homeowners insurance and we hope we never have to use it i hope my home never burns down but the one guy you once knew who one time had their home burned down you're sure glad they got to rebuild it right and it's the same thing here college is going to work for most everybody almost all the time but in the event that it didn't work for you know your buddy james gosh wouldn't it be nice that he can reset he doesn't have to be made destitute because he went to college right and so we we offer that chance to reset so our product sort of a college buys it on behalf of the students sort of on so they buy it for the incoming freshman class and then those kids go to school for three to six years graduate and we we basically say hey we'll we'll guarantee that your business majors can make 42 grand a year or your engineers will make 56 or your dance majors make 31 or whatever the breakdown of prices is for that for the various majors at that school and then you so you've got new insight into like changing your major and what impact it has then you graduate for five years you send us your tax returns and if you didn't earn over that period what we said you would we cut you a check for the difference right like we'll make you whole and you can use that to go to grad school now you could use that to pay off the loans you get for whatever you want maybe you've paid them off because you just worked your tail off but it you know wasn't what you thought it would be and we're able to give you that that safety net so that's that's really what we've built and in august we were licensed in illinois that's the first state to approve us as an insurance product um that process takes more than you think right insurance is regulated by each of the 50 states separately there's not really a federal regulator for insurance and so um we can now sell it in illinois for the first time we spent last 30 days trying to do that knock cole knocking on doors for university presidents saying hey this this is something you want to be able to tell your students right that you can guarantee their futures so how just out of curiosity so how has it has it been well received people love it do you have the educational system that you know is slow to evolve and they don't want to invest or try out something new or how has it gone so far since you guys have launched yeah i mean people are really intrigued people sort of like it in concept and there's a question how you pay for it there's also a question of sort of mental bandwidth as we're in the middle of all the coveted response stuff right now um schools aren't good at doing lots of new things at once right the the risk tolerance is generally pretty low um but you do have some really great innovators out there that are that are trying things and willing to but they're in the middle of trying to make sure they've got liability waivers that they don't get sued if somebody gets covered when they're on campus i mean they have 100 other challenges they've never expected before and so even though we address something critical to them right now which is you know students aren't enrolling at the same numbers and so their revenues are down and they're trying to cut their way to success which is not a good plan and we can help buoy up that revenue stream the the mental bandwidth sometimes just isn't there right now like they just can't process one more new thing so we do hear you know come back in january like love it like it sounds amazing come talk to me you know in the new year when we've been through a semester and kind of like got our sea legs under us no i i think that probably to them is fair and it makes sense that they're trying to figure things out one of the interesting things this is an aside but i think that they're also doing with is you know they're getting it's interesting i think it was stanford i'd have to go look now so don't don't don't quote me on it even though i'm saying on the podcast but they are also getting sued because they're getting students that were paying for a live and in person experience and then they're saying now you get to stay at home you don't get to go out they don't have any experience you don't get the live thing and so students will come back saying why am i paying the same same price for what would be an inferior product and so i think they're also dealing with that as a balance of how to deal with that as well yeah they're done with a lot of just newness right like it's all new and and there's a whole bunch of things like is it the same products you know is is college about knowledge delivery or is it about the experience and going out with your buddies and joining up for like you know what is that how do you define that college experience like they they're dealing with a lot right now no no question their biggest problem now you've and i dragged myself off to an aside the interesting thing is their problem is they've been preaching for so long that online experience is not as good as in person trying to compete with all the online schools but now to come back saying never mind we're online just as good as in person they've kind of dug themselves a bit of a hole so it's interesting to see how that plays out as well yeah absolutely so i and i think that now going back to your story i think that that's an interest i like that at least makes sense a common thread between the airline industry and the insurance industry because i i agree that that seems like very highly regulated i've looked at it i've had to deal with it from the legal side before and it's always a pain in the butt in the sense that they always are there's a lot of hoops to jump through but it makes for a good barrier entry if you actually jump through all the hoops you can make it so it's harder for someone to just knock you off or copy what you're doing so one of the interesting things about heavily regulated space i have this theory i call the iron balloon like big companies are a balloon that don't want to be popped and so they use regulation they use their market power to sort of build this iron bulwark around to keep people from popping them um but what it means is if you'll fight through the little blow hole you've got nothing but growth in front of you so you look at the most successful startups in the country every year they're often in very very heavily regulated space because that's where the opportunity is greatest and to your point you've got this protective barrier around you now good bad or otherwise it exists it existed for someone else but now you're there the other one that i like is you know i i tend to think i'm like a decently smart human but i'm by no means the smartest guy running around and uh you don't have to outsmart everybody in heavily regulated space you can outwork everybody and and that's a rare dynamic so when you want to start an airline there's a path to do that a known path with the faa like so i walked into an faa office and said how do i start an airline and they kind of verbally pat you on the head and say well it's really hard and you go okay all right but what's the path like oh well you'd have to fill out this form and you send it to these 12 offices and you do these things you know you got to file this and then you got to hire these three okay so can i photocopy this one have this one or how do i you know how do i get the form so as long as you're just willing to do it you don't have to think of the system it's the only way to start a startup that where there's a playbook already there right that's that's i like that is it's a good insight in the sense that it gives you a competitive advantage not the always now you don't have to be the smartest innovator or the person that has all the answers you just have to make it through all the bureaucracy and all the regulations and you beat out most of people and we'll never go through all of that yeah if you have patience and you're willing to just put your nose down and do the stuff right and a lot of it's busy work it shouldn't apply and you know and like okay and you beat your head against 100 walls but like if you can do that then heavily regulated space is a great place to innovate right like i've never done anything in medicine or pharmaceuticals but i'd almost say that even in the legal industry which i'm in and i look at basically law school i've had to take two different bar exams because i have to take both the normal bar exam to be licensed in utah and i also have to take the special little patent bar exam or to be a patent attorney and do i think that that gives me it doesn't prove that i'm going to be a good attorney now i hope i'm a good attorney i think i am but it does create the barriers to entry that if you go through enough of that almost what you're saying regulation then you can say it limits the field is the number of people that are in there and it gives you a competitive advantage and then all of that you know almost like what you did i kind of like said now i'm in this industry it's one that's already limited how do i shake up this industry how do i do something different and that's how where i've started to implement a lot of our program so without yeah yeah it's great so now we've and we've diverted a few fun tangents and i've enjoyed every minute of it we are reaching towards the end of the podcast so i'm going to jump to the questions i always ask at the end of the podcast so the first question i'll ask is what was the worst business decision you ever made and what did you learn from it worst business decision i've ever made so any executive that doesn't tell you it's a hiring decision is lying to themselves right like you've got an error rate and a bad employee or someone who's not bought in on the vision and contributing the way that like they drag down the whole team so um and then the hard part is because you hired them because you like them right you love them like and you you build this affinity for people and so it's very hard to move on from those folks sometimes too even though you know that performance isn't what it should be um so i mean the greatest sort of failures are usually hiring the wrong person waiting too long to help them find some place where they will be happy when they're not happy there and and everybody makes that mistake but i certainly made that mistake as well and and i'm i'm right there with you and i always found that it's even beyond talent you can find a lot of talented people but your problem is you also as you mentioned they have to buy into the vision they have to and you know all the cliche words but they really hold meaning is they have to be on board for how where you want to bring the take the company otherwise they're always pulling it in a different direction or they're always trying to you know pull things back but they're not really all on board and so i think hiring is one lesson that no matter how many books you read no matter how many other people you see do it and no matter how many great bosses you've been under until you're actually in that position of hiring it's one where you just one thing you just have to work out so i think that that's a great great point yeah so second question now if you're talking to someone that's just getting into startups or small businesses what would be the one piece of advice you'd give them the one piece of advice you need to be really really introspective you need to um i know a lot of ceos that were really happy as the number two at their previous company as a ceo or a cfo or whatever and they're miserable as ceos i know a lot of i have hired going back to the previous question i've hired a number of folks who will tell you they want to be in startups who desperately this is the right path for them and they should be working at bank of america um like there's there's a very different sort of support structure that comes with a big company and uh and if your mindset is how do i extract value the greatest value for me from this company you're gonna have a hard time at a startup or if it's like this is what i do i'm i'm a finance guy this is what i do why am i in the marketing meeting you're gonna have a hard time at a startup right and and there are there are folks who they believe they want their whole life they think startup is the answer for them and they would just be so happy in a big company so i think you need to be really really introspective about what you want and why you want the startup um often you want to make great outsized impact when you're in a junior role and the startup will afford you that but it also affords you then outsized responsibility and so you have the greater chance of blowing up in your face too right and so um so it's it's different right and your your risk tolerance and your stress tolerance and you know you kind of got to know who you are and frankly earlier in your career you might not know who you are yet and and what would be best for you and so er in those early years you really should be trying to figure out where you're going to fit best where your skill set works but where your personality works i i spent early part of my career in the government and i could have had a nice government career i you know was promoted at a good rate and i you know i had i had a good path there but i also knew that i was going to be miserable uh and i didn't know that going in i thought i went to undergrad believing i was going to be a foreign service officer right and that's sort of what i wanted to do and uh and i got into the government and it was it was evident really quick i uh there are wonderful people doing really really good work there but there's a different mindset around like well my job is to sort of see what i can get out of the government right can i go to this one more conference or get this one more training or find this bonus over here like what can i do to maximize me not and there's not a strong sort of customer orientation right and i knew that i wanted something different so i i knew quickly it was going to be a job and not a career for me but i did not know that going in right and startups can be the same right people should should look at that hard but on the flip side if you really are that person then do it now right there's nothing that will qualify you to do it that there's not like i need three years in a management consultant and then i'll go build one like you should just do it now no i agree and i think that's that's valid points on both and sometimes sometimes it's also better just do it go out try it find out you it's not for you and then go back and be much happier the job you're at because you know there's a lot of people i could do it so much better than my boss and then they actually go and try and start i'm like you mean i have to do payroll i have to do taxes i have to do hr i have to do hiring and firing i do product development i have to do marketing i have to work 20 hours and then you know blah blah blah and the list goes on and on and if i find saying well i thought i want to do startup now i'm going to go back and do the career and there's so much happier so sometimes i think it also is just trying it out getting it out of your system and if it works out great awesome and if it doesn't then fall back on what you can do well you know my my little brother was my co-founder at sir fair and uh my whole life he wanted to be an entrepreneur and that was like we all knew that david wanted to be an entrepreneur and as i was the ceo and we're building the company he said to me once he's like i thought i wanted to be an entrepreneur because i wanted to be in control of my own destiny i didn't want somebody tell me what to do and he said i have never seen someone with less control of what they do than you it's like you're building a jigsaw puzzle out of a tornado right and like trying to pull down a piece and put it constantly and it's the opposite of what i thought the experience would be there's there's less control here not more yeah and uh and so he learned like i think that's not for me right maybe i could do a we talked about he's like maybe i could do like a franchise where here's the rules and i can go execute and i can do that really well right but he's a pilot for a good reason right it's just let's just use the pilot i always say you know and i always laugh because we're doing the same thing and i'm in legal industry but we're trying a whole bunch of new programs trying to mix it up and i always say i'm building the airplane as it's taking off maybe i've i don't even have the airplay built i'm trying to get it to fly and hopefully it takes off before we get to the end of the runway because you're trying to get everything done and trying to or juggle it all and i think there's absolutely a ton of ton of uh truth to that you're there isn't as much control as you think as a ceo and usually there's a lot less but we could go on all day and maybe sometime again we'll have to but for today so people want to reach out they want to find out more about your insurance company if they're in the getting ready to go to school they're in school they want to know how to ensure their career they want to make sure that they make as much as they possibly can and not and not be worried about graduating best way to reach out to you uh degreeinsurance.co right just come to the website and and uh yeah reach out to us our emails are there everybody's easy to find but we'd love to talk to anybody who's interested awesome well i encourage everybody from if you're in the educational industry to if you're a student and anybody in between or if you just want to find out more about a very uh fun career and all and how you made all your decisions to reach out to you now for all of those all of you that are listeners if you have a great journey to tell we'd love to have you on feel free to go to inventivejourneyguest.com apply to be a guest on a podcast we'd love to hear your epis or hear your journey if you make sure to click subscribe so you get notifications there's all these awesome episodes come out and lastly if you ever need help with patents and trademarks feel free to reach out to us at miller ip law we're always here to help thank you again wade it's been fun it's been a pleasure and i wish we always had more time and we'll have to have you back on soon thanks so much for having me i appreciate it or if it's like this is what i do i'm i'm a finance guy this is what i do why am i in the marketing meeting you're gonna have a hard time at a startup right and and there are there are folks who they believe they want their whole life they think startup is the answer for them and they would just be so happy in a big company so i think you need to be really really introspective about what you want and why you want the startup um often you want to make great outsized impact when you're in a junior role and a startup will afford you that but it also affords you then outsized responsibility and so you have the greater chance of blowing it up in your face too right and so um so it's it's different right and your your risk tolerance and your stress tolerance and you kind of got to know who you are and frankly earlier in your career you might not know who you are yet and and what would be best for you and so er in those early years you really should be trying to figure out where you're going to fit best where your skill set works where your personality works i i spent early part of my career in the government and i could have had a nice government career i you know was promoted at a good rate and you know i had i had a good path there but i also knew that i was going to be miserable and i didn't know that going in i thought i went to undergrad believing i was going to be a foreign service officer right and that's sort of what i wanted to do and uh and i got into the government and it was it was evident really quick i uh there are wonderful people doing really really good work there but there's a different mindset around like well my job is to sort of see what i can get out of the government right can i go to this one more conference or get this one more training or find this bonus over here like what can i do to maximize me not and there's not a strong sort of customer orientation right and i knew that i wanted something different i knew quickly it was going to be a job and not a career for me but i did not know that going in right and startups can be the same right people should should look at that hard but on the flip side if you really are that person then do it now right there's nothing that will qualify you to do it there's not like i need three years in a management consultant and then i'll go build one like you should just do it now no i agree and i think that's that's valid points on both and sometimes sometimes it's also better just do it go out try it find out you it's not for you and then go back and be much happier the job you're at because you know there's a lot of people i could do it so much better than my boss and then they actually go and try and start i'm like you mean i have to do payroll i have to do taxes i have to do hr i have to do hiring and finding i do product development i have to do marketing i have to work 20 hours and then you know blah blah blah and the list goes on and on and if i find saying well i thought i want to start up now i'm gonna go back and do the career and there's so much happier so sometimes i think it also is just trying it out getting it out of your system and if it works out great awesome and if it doesn't then fall back on what you can do well you know my my little brother was my co-founder at sir fair and my whole life he wanted to be an entrepreneur and that was like we all knew that david wanted to be an entrepreneur and as i was the ceo and we're building the company he said to me once he's like i thought i wanted to be an entrepreneur because i wanted to be in control of my own destiny i didn't want to have somebody tell me what to do and he said i have never seen someone with less control of what they do than you it's like you're building a jigsaw puzzle out of a tornado right and like trying to pull down a piece and put it constantly and it's the opposite of what i thought the experience would be there's there's less control here not more yeah and uh and so he learned like i think that's not for me right maybe i could do a we talked about he's like maybe i could do like a franchise where here's the rules and i can go execute and i can do that really well right but he's a pilot for a good reason right it's not let's just use the pilot i always say you know and i always laugh because we're doing the same thing and i'm in legal industry but we're trying a whole bunch of new programs trying to mix it up and i always say i'm building the airplane as it's taking off maybe i've i don't even have the airplane built i'm trying to get it to fly and hopefully it takes off before we get to the end of the runway because you're trying to get everything done and trying to or juggle it all and i think there's absolutely a ton of ton of uh truth to the year there isn't as much control as you think as a ceo and usually there's a lot less well we could go on all day and maybe sometime again we'll have to but for today so people want to reach out they want to find out more about your insurance company if they're in the getting ready to go to school they're in school they want to know how to ensure their career they want to make sure that they make as much as they possibly can and not and not be worried about graduating best way to reach out to you degreeinsurance.co right just come to the website and and uh yeah reach out to us our emails are there everybody's easy to find but uh we'd love to talk to anybody who's interested awesome well i encourage everybody from if you're in the educational industry to if you're a student and anybody in between or if you just want to find out more about a very uh fun career and all and how you made all your decisions to reach out to you now for all of those all of you that are listeners if you have a great journey to tell we'd love to have you on feel free to go to inventivejourneyguest.com apply to be a guest on the podcast we'd love to hear your epis or hear your journey if you make sure to click subscribe so you get notifications as all these awesome episodes come out and lastly if you ever need help with patents and trademarks feel free to reach out to us at miller ip law we're always here to help thank you again wade it's been fun it's been a pleasure and i wish we always had more time and we'll have to have you back on soon thanks so much for having me i appreciate it

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