All You Need is a Great Team . . . and Coffee
“Are you paralyzed with fear? That’s a good sign. Fear is good. Like self-doubt, fear is an indicator. Fear tells us what we have to do. Remember one rule of thumb: the more scared we are of a work or calling, the more sure we can be that we have to do it.” ~ Steven Pressfield, The War of Art
The fear had set in deeply. For weeks, then months, the fear could not be shaken. Eventually, the fear needed to be embraced.
That is how BizLatte was formed. Over the course of 6-months, the team from Your MBA Purpose and The 9to5 Misfits slowly built a relationship. Soon it was a friendship, and one day it was clear. As a unified team, we would grow quicker (and have more fun) compared to being separate entities.
It was decided in November 2016 that the two brands would come together to form BizLatte and be the one-stop shop for millennial career advancement. However, it wasn’t an easy decision and all the steps just to get to launch took months of planning and strategy.
You might not be starting a business, but the lessons we learned easily translate to any professional endeavor. First, you need a team to hold you accountable. Once you have a strong group you can then build momentum. Those first two attributes are actually the easy steps, you will need more to get your idea or project off the ground.
Pushing forward when you want to give up is a skill all of us can develop. Let’s explore how we launched BizLatte and how you can utilize the steps whether you are a student, unemployed, underemployed, or want to start a business.
It's Harder Than You Think, But It's Worth It
It is very hard to say no. Nobody wants to be negative.
Not so long ago, I used to schedule time every week to sit with my mom and watch NBA games. At least once per week.
By the way, my mom used to beat me at basketball until I was about 11-12 years old. Yes, I know it may sound embarrassing, but she played for Venezuela’s national team. My mom’s got game!
We would just sit down and enjoy the game of basketball. At that time I probably knew every player on every team. Even the one’s that don’t play 1-minute per game.
This year, I don’t even know the starters of any team because I’ve had to say no to basketball. It is very tough because it was my first passion, basketball was the first activity I did that ignited the fire in my belly. I love basketball, but we have to have priorities in order to be productive.
Recently, I had the opportunity to share my experience at an MBA Info Session and the robot in me took over for a moment.
I was asked about time management, prioritizing, and how to deal with everything that goes into an MBA program. My answer was basically that you just have to toughen up and stop making excuses (I’m thinking maybe I was too tough, but it’s a left-brain thing).
Fortunately, at Bauer, they make it really simple for the students to be successful because they have created an ecosystem of value. The students basically just have to show up and do work.
I said it was simple, not easy. Nothing worth doing will be easy, you just have to toughen up and do it. You have to have a strong why, that’s it. There is no secret. If you don’t have a strong why you will just give up.
Showing up and doing the work is not easy, you won’t always wake up with a lot of energy. Those are the days when it will matter the most.
Then at some point, you will stop and look back, and you will realize how far you’ve come. It will all make sense then. It will take some time to get to that point, but it will be worth it. That realization will give you the energy to keep going forward, to keep getting comfortable with the uncomfortable.
This is what BizLatte is all about. It’s about taking it to the next level!
You can be part of this next step too. In fact, we are not going to be able to achieve it without you.
If we travel alone we can go faster. Your MBA Purpose got to Google’s first page in less than 6 months. But that was not enough. We want to go further, which is why we are expanding our team and joining forces with The 9to5 Misfits.
You can take it to the next level too. Join our ecosystem.
Building BizLatte has felt like a dream, at times a scary dream. This is what I have wanted to do ever since I started by first business, Elisha Consulting. I still run that business and have amazing clients. Yet, being a marketing consultant is unlikely to shake up the world.
BizLatte, on the other hand, has an ambitious vision to re-brand the millennial generation. We know millennials are perceived as lazy, entitled, disconnected, and unreliable. That is how others see my generation. I see a large group who desire a purposeful life. They have seen how traditional jobs treated their parents and don’t want the same fate.
My generation wants to leave a legacy, follow inspirational leaders, and build something which actually matters. However, desire is not enough. Grit, meaningful relationships, and commitment are prerequisites for lofty goals.
These same attributes are found in starting a business. As a team, we endured long months of strategy sessions, building our products and services, creating digital platforms, and accepting critique from others. Here is where most people give up. They have an idea, a way to make the company better, or grand ambition. What they don’t have is grit. Are you willing to sacrifice to attain your ideal future? First step: you need grit and determination, nothing happens overnight.
We needed to build meaningful relationships. We have a lot of fun, but there have also been uncomfortable conversations and compromises. This is how meaningful relationships are built! If you want weak results then go ahead with weak relationships. If you want to make a difference then you need a team you can trust. The ability to rely on each other is forged through bringing up issues which are not enjoyable to discuss. Second step: spend time in uncomfortable conversations to create meaningful relationships.
Then there is commitment. At any time during the past few months, we could have stopped and nobody would have known. We could have delayed launching because we weren’t ready. But we didn’t. We persevered, even though all of us are fearful . . . in a good way. Will this work? Can we really hit our goals? Will we make money? What happens when things go bad, or when they go well? These are questions which are only answered through an unwavering commitment to our goal and each other. Third step: audacious plans demand commitment.
I have met with many people who want to start something, in fact, after some reflection, I realized I have been part of 6 startups in one way or another. Most of them failed with a couple exceptions. The reason for failure is a lack of the above steps. They did not have grit, a team with meaningful relationships, or commitment to the cause. Starting something is more difficult than anyone will ever tell you and can only truly be appreciated through experience.
If you are ready to take the first step to living a purposeful life, come on over and check out BizLatte. You will find a group who is dedicated to serving you and seeing a generation claim a positive legacy.
Let’s Make it Happen
How many times have you said, “this is the year”?
We have all been there.
You may think you need confidence in order to make it happen. With confidence, you might be able to break that cycle of overpromising and under-delivering.
Let us tell you confidence is great, but it is not what you need right now. Confidence is something developed over time, once you start accumulating results. Confidence is having no doubt you can deliver. Once you have confidence, you will be unstoppable.
How do we get confidence then?
Again, we will tell you that confidence doesn’t matter that much at this point. What you are looking for is courage.
Courage is taking that first step when everything is dark. It is daring to take action even when you cannot see the light at the end of the tunnel.
We have confidence that you can make it happen because we started with courage. You can have a successful career, enjoy your work, and live a rich life. We know it because we have helped others do it. We are confident in our ability to guide you through this journey. It won’t be easy, but we will make it simple for you.
You just have to show up and do the work. It’s time to toughen up a bit and muster the courage to take that first step. The good news is you will not be in the dark because we will show you the way.
Alejandro I. Sanoja & Matt Avery