Wednesday, August 28, 2013

2 years in, 10 things I have learned so far

Cannot believe it has been 2 years already since 1Me, LLC became official. Time has flown and a lot of progress has been made. I have learned a lot about myself on this journey, so I wanted to share the top 10 things that I have learned so far:

1. Recruit 24/7. Every meeting, happy hour, lunch/dinner is an opportunity to recruit the best. I always enjoy hearing what people do and what their motivation is so that I can put them in future roles as I continually build this company. There are a lot of great people out there and I want them. You may or may not know it but I may have your career planned out already, haha.

2. Do not give away your company. The majority of my original team members are no longer here and getting back equity shares was a hassle and waste of time. At that time, I was using equity as a form of “payment.” Real entrepreneurs will stay with you for the opportunity, with no pay, because real entrepreneurs are there to create something, a better future.

3. Be constructive, not critical. I have OCD, am annoyingly detail oriented, and have high expectations, all good… for me but not necessarily good when building a team. To build a team, you need to grow them. To do that, focus on how to make things better and not on what they did wrong. In short, highlight solutions and not problems.

4. Learn to adapt to your environment. I went from living in a renovated condo in NYC to India, and was that an eye opener. Going from being a non-veg to a veg to living by myself to a dorm style shared room, I had to learn to adapt because it is about making the best of the situation so that you can move on to a better situation. It is like all new things, it will take time to adapt and you will always feel silly for saying “I can’t do this” initially.

5. Say No. At one point, I was working full-time for my regular job, for 1ME, as a Regional Director for AKPsi, and a Founding Member/President for the AKPsi NYC Alumni Chapter. When I realized that I could no longer put in 110% effort into my RD role, I began to transition out of that position. Stepping down as the RD was probably the hardest decision I had to make because I enjoyed pushing myself to make a difference for my students and volunteers.  I used to be a "yes" guy but time is so valuable these days. If you cannot put 110% in it, do not do it, you cannot please everyone and you end up doing more harm than good.

6. You are not the biggest asset, the team is. I was an “I’ll do it myself” type of guy but at some point it becomes impossible to do it all. Surround yourself with good people that believe in you and build them. Your goal is to make them better than you so that you can build a better company. There is no me in team.

7. Workout, be healthy. Simple enough, the best time to free and open your mind is when you are working out and the adrenaline pumping.  My best thinking is when I’m sweating first thing in the morning. You can do more with a healthy mind and body then just sitting around and feeding on crap.

8. Be grateful, humility goes a long way. On my journey in establishing this company, I have met many great people and received a lot of support which has helped me to get to today. I truly am grateful to have such great people and opportunities in my life, without them I could not have made it. The simplest way to thank someone is to say thank you and by doing the small things for them. I have seen too many people take things for granted, make selfish decisions, and turn their backs. As a human being, you are not better than anyone else, everyone has their own paths and the best thing you can do is empower them to move forward in their life.

9. Create your core values and use them. Sometimes you run into difficult decisions that you have to make. Having a set of core values that you and your team believe in allow you to make that decision. It is a base and a guide for the company.

10. Appreciate. When I started a crowd funding campaign for 1ME, I had my doubts because it was a lot of money I was looking to raise. The support that I received from people that I have known throughout my life time was absolutely amazing. I was surprised by the unexpected that donated and truly appreciate all of the support. Experiencing India, I have learned that having your basic needs met such as food, clean water, and having a roof over your head makes you fortunate. There are many people in this world that do not even have these basic necessities. When you are having a bad day, remember that there is someone else out there who is having it a lot worse. Appreciate what you have, if you want more, go get it, and always, always, give back.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

The Past Month in a Nutshell

Well, I’m back to blogging, do not know if that is a good or bad thing, haha. It has been busy for 1ME since the last post, a lot of changes…  all good changes!

With the 1ME Angel Fund, I was able to accelerate some of my plans. With it, we were able to rent a 3-bedroom bungalow for the next 6-months, on-board 1 designer and 1 other developer, and get office furniture and supplies! And that only took half of the fund, the power of the USD in India! Much appreciation and love to the 1ME Angels!

In addition to MeSocial, I’m excited to announce that 1ME will have a services division, called MeToo Studios, offering design (digital and advertisements), website, and mobile app development. We are currently putting together the plans for this and will leverage our current resources so that we can start generating revenue to sustain MeSocial and the company. And if that was not enough, I’m currently working on developing 1, possibly 2, more products offerings for 1ME! Finally, I’m also honored to announce that 1ME will be creating a non-profit foundation with the Drexel Alpha Kappa Psi Chapter to honor and remember Chris Peterson, who passed away at such an early age. What an awesome and motivated brother and person he was, miss you bro!

The next 6-months will be my final push with the team, to see if we can make 1ME possible. So why not go in full-force at 200%? Miss you stress, old pal.

And the new office? Well, I cannot do a video tour of it since it has been rainy and gloomy for the past week but will do one when I'm back here. Till then, here is a glimpse of it!

Lastly, I will be heading back to the states TOMORROW for exactly 6-weeks, hope to see you all! Cannot wait to have some beef and beer, the essentials of life, haha.

TT Quote: “I will because I am.”