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Entrepreneurship

The 5 Pieces Of Advice You Wish You Were Told Before You Started: Told By Ed Stulak

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What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started”?

“Never trust anyone.”

In business and in life, the majority of people only care about their own self-interest. You need to ensure that you can keep a thick skin and hold your own because the reality is that most people cannot be trusted. When I first embarked on my entrepreneurial journey, one of the initial companies that I started working for promised me a lot in return for the work that they were asking me to do, but instead, once I was finished they just kicked me to the curb and wiped their hands clean of me.

I couldn’t believe that they were just using me for their own personal benefit, but it taught me a very valuable lesson. No matter how well you think you know someone, it’s important to never trust anyone and always be able to fall back and rely on yourself to accomplish the things that will ultimately help inspire your vision.

“Don’t be deceived by people who sugarcoat.”

There are many positive aspects to social media, but unfortunately with everything good there comes a dark side. When portraying your life on a platform for everyone to indulge in and to follow, it’s always good to be truthful in the information that you’re conveying. Far too often, I see social media users being mislead into buying a product or subscribing to a service that they saw advertised on Instagram because it was ‘proven’ to help them ‘get rich quick’.

Don’t be fooled by influencers on social media who just want your money and don’t actually care about the value they are providing for you. The best influencers to follow are the ones providing actual value towards your craft, not just offering you a scheme to try and get you to buy into something that you could figure out on your own.

“You’re not the only one that feels this way.”

When you’re feeling down and feeling as if your life is spiraling out of control, realize that you’re not the only one that feels this way. There’s always someone that’s in it deeper than you are, so don’t feel as if failure is an exclusive feeling that only you have to face. Feeling like an outsider usually means that you are doing something right because it means you are challenging the norm and striving to create your own lane in a world where everyone follows instead of choosing to lead.

When I was transitioning from hockey to entrepreneurship, I began changing my image to reflect the person that I wanted to be even though no one that I knew at the time was doing the same thing. I felt singled out because I was selling all of my stuff and dressing dapper for no reason, and my friends started to take notice. But ultimately I was just orienting my goals towards my ambitions, and that has since made all the difference.

“Good artists copy, great artists steal.”

To this day, this is one of my favorite quotes from the world-renowned artist Pablo Picasso. If you’re seeking to be the best in whatever it is that you do, you have to be willing to steal and adapt your craft based on others who you look up to. Stealing something from someone, whether it be a style, a habit or a product, and then reworking it to reflect your ambitions is key to adapting to the ever-changing world that we live in.

When I first met Gerard Adams in 2017, I knew right away that I wanted to be like him. I began emulating his career and started taking bits and pieces of what he did with his personal brand to help bolster my reputation as “The Millennial Realtor”. Gerard has given me unequivocal value in the social media marketing realm and I’m forever grateful for his hustle because it has since helped define mine.

“Find and seek out mentors.”

One of the most important things I wish someone would have told me early on in my career is to make it a priority to find and seek out mentors. If I had sought out a mentor right away after transitioning from playing hockey to starting my own business, it would have undoubtedly cut my learning curve in half. When I started dabbling in Real Estate I was never told how to do things, only what I needed to do.

It wasn’t until I was approached by a prospective mentor that I was truly able to flourish into who I am today. The skills that you have need to be desirable and of some specific value for a mentor to approach you, but you should never wait and let them find you. If you’re passionate about what you do, it’s pivotal to your success that you go out of your way and seek out mentorship to help fill in the gaps and position yourself to succeed.

Jourdain Bell is an entrepreneur, writer and Co-founder of Beast Media Agency where he focuses on helping Influencers and Entrepreneurs get their message out through Personal Branding and PR. He also works for one of the most active Venture Capital Firms in the world, Alumni Venture Group. Jourdain sleeps, eats, and breathes entrepreneurship. He started selling Candy and electronics in high school, then joined a start-up in college that he helped grow from $20k to $130k a month in just 8 months. Now he shares both his and others expertise about business and entrepreneurship on sites such as Influencive, Future Sharks, Kivo Daily, Disrupt and more!

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Cryptocurrency

Multi-Millionaire Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur Reveals All-Hustle, Failure and Success

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From humble beginnings to building a thriving trading career and diversifying into other businesses- Nenad continues to conquer every industry he sets his eyes on. A serial entrepreneur, angel investor, philanthropist, trader- he continues to inspire millions and create millionaires in his industry.

Who else do you know that not only has made millions but has helped others become successful? He is also the CEO of Advance Crypto Academy– the #1 Online Platform in North America that has 16,000 members that have access to the most updated information on crypto and forex.

Today we sit down with Neno to discuss how he continues to build an empire and achieve success at the young age of 25:

Neno- thank you for your time, how did this all start?

I had big dreams as a young kid. Immigrating at the age of 2 from Serbia while there was a war during 1992 forced my parents to start life all over again in Canada. While my dad was successful back home, in Canada to make ends meet and provide for the family- he started a Construction and Renovation company servicing ultra-high net worth individuals;

I was amazed by the wealth and the appearance of the homes my dad was working on. During the night time, my mom worked a job to help my father out and ensure we had enough. While helping my dad for free and working at his shop, I began to realize the value of money.

I absolutely hated school- the social circles, the useless gossip- I despised every moment of it. I attended college but I dropped out after 2 months because I was against the traditional education system and I never understood why I should be listening to the professor when he wasn’t rich and didn’t live the lifestyle that I aspired to live. I knew I was destined for more and I took the risk and dropped out.

I googled how to be rich and came across 2 books “Rich Dad Poor Dad” along with “Think and Grow Rich” which taught me the mindset of the wealthy and opened me up to a new world.

I was always a risk-taker. I would rather take a chance and fail vs dying, knowing that I never took a chance. I am not afraid to go homeless while going after my dreams. The saying “You miss 100% of the shots you never take” is real. I am willing to die for my dreams.

How did you get into trading?

I got a full-time job in the sales and finance department in a head office of a company in Oakville selling products like computers, home furniture, and other things. The goal for me was to work and save my own money but I was starting to realize that it was difficult to do so because of my income=my expenses. I needed another way out.

“On my way to success, I always asked myself the difference between the richest man in America and the poorest man. I realized it was a fine line of knowing information followed by application. Warren Buffett knows the art of making money and applies it. He may not have the highest IQ but knowing how to apply information and knowledge has made him billions”

I made the company I was working for $2.2 million in 2 years but my salary was about $50,000 after taxes which led me to the realization of 2 things:

  1. My income was spent on covering my expenses and I could barely save anything.
  2. A 9-5 was not going to help me save enough money to get rich

“THERE WAS A TIME DURING THIS PROCESS- I REMEMBER 1 DAY WALKING INTO MY CAR AND IT FELT LIKE I HAD 1000 POUNDS ON MY SHOULDER, I WAS ABSOLUTELY DEPRESSED AND NEEDED A WAY OUT”

A friend introduced me to an MLM opportunity and I learned about the power of residual income and using other people to leverage time. The concept of working ½ the time and make more money if not equivalent to my job excited me. After not being as successful I later joined another company and started earning $1000/month but started becoming stagnant in the process.

On Instagram, I saw an individual that had the lifestyle- nice watches and I messaged him asking “What do you do ?” He met me at a mall and he showed me the power of Forex and how he made $75,000 in 3 days, I was floored and couldn’t believe it.

It was not easy to trade and I didn’t succeed for the first 3 years and had some personal problems which led me to take a break after. After starting a landscaping and shisha lounge which wasn’t fun to run- I decided to figure this forex thing out and had an epiphany. Something clicked, and I started making profits with my first big month being $12,000.

“Trading is 90% psychology and 10% analytics”

At 19, I told myself that by 23 I needed to have $1M and a supercar. One week before my 23rd birthday- I had a gold Lamborghini and $1M. For me, it was either I get rich or die trying in the process- there was no other option.

How did you get involved in Bitcoin?

In early 2017, I needed to diversify my money and a couple of people approached me asking about BTC. I decided to research the tech behind this and understand the application even further. I was introduced to one of my friend’s partners who flipped a $6,000 account to $32M. I made $1M in 9 months and I introduced my friends to it and they made money in crypto to.

I later launched Advance Crypto Academy due to the popular demand from the results my clients received. In addition- people wanted to know how I achieved success and I am very transparent with my trades. If you go on my Instagram stories- you will see tonnes of results and testimonials of people that succeed with my trades.

How do you want people to remember you?

I want those close to me to have memories of the good times they spent with me- the times I made them smile and laugh. In addition, I want to make every person around me a better person and create that spark of inspiration in others to go and follow their dreams.

You have a dream? Go out and make it happen.

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Entrepreneurship

Meet the Man Behind the Real Estate Business Doing over $100 Million a Year

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Business is a game of risks, and it takes one with tough skin to venture into the industry. The markets are unpredictable, and there’s no telling when economic collapse may hit. Businesses like real estate are the most affected by economic collapse, and no one knows this better than Dean Aguilar.

 

Aguilar literary came from nothing to become a seven-figure digital entrepreneur and one of the most sought after speakers on sales and mindset coaching. He is the CEO of Digital Muse and founder of Xavier Dean Realty and Dean Aguilar Group. Digital Muse is a brand consulting agency emphasizing on social media execution, while the other two are Real Estate companies. Aguilar has been through a market collapse and came out a winner, that’s what sets him apart from many entrepreneurs.

 

Dean Aguilar at a Glance

 

Aguilar comes from an immigrant family, and this was the first challenge he had to overcome. His father is Pakistani while his mother is from Argentina where they migrated from in 1972. They didn’t have much and lived in a one-bedroom house in Washington DC and later moved near to Falls Church, Virginia. Life was hard, and at some point, Aguilar was homeless for three months. 

 

His family depended on welfare and food stamps. Facing those tribulations of being an immigrant pushed him to the wall, and he knew he had to do better.

 

At 13, Aguilar started bagging groceries and making three dollars an hour. He then developed a passion for fitness after turning 15. Shortly after Aguilar began doing personal training at a local gym and this gave him some experience in sales. Aguilar sharpened his sales skills quite fast, and by the time he was turning 21, he was running a fitness business with 61 employees. 

 

While still in the fitness business, he met a mentor who was in Real Estate business and joined him as the lead agent in his mentor’s team. That is where his sales skills came in handy; he was making $300,000 a year selling over $20 Million in Real Estate per year by the time he was 26.

 

Rising From the Ashes

 

At this point in his life, Aguilar did not know that his biggest challenge as an entrepreneur was right around the corner. In 2008 a total collapse of the United States housing market happened. 

 

He knew he had to reinvent, and that’s what he did. Aguilar fought his way through the market collapse to make even more. 

 

After the Real Estate market collapse, he went back to the fitness industry.

 

The first thing he did was set up two fitness studios in Los Angeles, California. He did this for a while, learned a new skill in REO, and turned his attention back to Real Estate, specifically the California market. Surviving the market collapse created new opportunities for Aguilar. In 2012, he started mentoring other entrepreneurs on scaling their businesses and working through an economic collapse.

 

Achievements and Future Ambitions

 

After surviving the market collapse, it has only gotten better and better for Aguilar. He went on to scale his business team, “Dean Aguilar Group,” and make $70 Million in sales annually. With this turning out to be a success, he launched Xavier Dean Realty, and it caught the attention of major news publications including Inman News,  Fox News LA, American Dream show, Lifestyles Tv Show and Tim Macy Show, a podcast. Aguilar has also been featured in Forbes, Inc, Bussiness.com, Future Sharks, Kivo Daily, Thrive Global, Succeed, Huffpost, Buzzfeed and Medium.

 

He gained 1000 followers every month across social media and in 2018 launched Digital Muse. The company is getting significant contracts with the top Fitness and Real Estate Brokerages in the country. Currently, Aguilar manages over $100 Million in revenue annually. He is also focusing more on his brand with three central beliefs, Mind, Body, and Action. Through all this, he always had a dream to lead and help others. Aguilar’s ambition is to impact and inspire millions.

 

Conclusion

 

Aguilar has proven to be a real entrepreneur by passing the ultimate test of a businessman. He has built his empire up from the ground and did it all over again. There is no doubt Aguilar can do it a couple of more times. He is truly a genius in his field and is giving back by training other entrepreneurs to do what he did.

 

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Entrepreneurship

How Jawad Malik Built a Successful Footwear Brand on a Shoestring Budget

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Jawad Malik built a premium custom footwear brand, which has garnered the love of thousands of customers and influencers across the world, with limited resources and while working a full-time job. We discuss the inception of IDRESE with Jawad, the difficulty of navigating a new business, and what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur.

The concept of IDRESE draws inspiration from a traditional European custom in which customers would walk into a cobbler shop to choose the colors, materials, and model type of their desired custom shoe. Cobblers would then take the customer’s specifications and handcraft the shoes. Jawad translated this model online and made it accessible worldwide.

He didn’t compromise quality for convenience, IDRESE shoes are handcrafted in Almansa, which is the shoemaking capital of Spain. The process takes a team of 50+ craftsmen and over 165 steps to make a single Goodyear welted shoe.

Developing the brand did not come easy. “As I was building IDRESE, I never had a solid plan of attack,” Jawad says, “I had no real idea on how to go about it, but what I knew was that in order for the business to go from being a dream to reality I had to fuel it somehow and by doing so I had to have a few things, like a consistent stream of income, a good supplier relationship, branding strategy, and effective marketing.” 

Kickstarting the business took long hours and many side hustles. “When IDRESE was just an idea, the pursuit to make it a brand seemed almost impossible – I did not know where to start or if I could even afford to pursue it.” Jawad took a full-time job with a liquidation company and worked rideshare to fuel the brand. 

“On my time off I contacted manufacturers and suppliers from all around the world to negotiate terms that I could manage within my constraints, which were lack of cash-flow and inventory space.” Jawad knew that, although his funds were limited, his idea was big and he could make it work through hard work and dedication. “After two and a half years, I was able to secure the production side for my custom footwear idea through cold calling and traveling to meet manufacturers.”

After securing the production and distribution side of the business, Jawad still had to tackle branding IDRESE. “I needed the shoe boxes, logo designs, web development, and many other aspects of branding, but all those things were expensive in the US, so I outsourced.” Jawad found that he could work within his strict budget and find talented designers outside of the United States market. 

Jawad knew it would take a lot of market knowledge and research to start his business, so he mastered the market IDRESE operates in. “Get to know your market intimately so that you know what you are getting into,” Jawad advises other young entrepreneurs, “ask yourself questions like, ‘is the market saturated?’ ‘Who are my customers?’ ‘What value am I adding?’ ‘How am I going to effectively convey my message to my audience?’”

Entrepreneurship is not glamorous – it requires long hours, prolonged moments of frustration, and many unexpected learning curves. “Be open to adversity. It is a difficult road and hardships are the unavoidable tuition that you pay,” Jawad says. “But hard work and the continuous need to learn new things in your market will help you overcome all obstacles.” 

Jawad believes it is important to keep a balance between prioritizing the bottom-line with his business ethics. “Morals and ethics are, by far, the most important features an entrepreneur must-have,” he states. “You must always treat your employees, customers, and partners with respect. To have such standards sets the tone for the culture you wish to create within your company and removes ego, which is detrimental to any start-up.” 

There are many components and moving parts to take a business from idea to conception. Between the knowledge, money, time, and logistics, Jawad shows that building and operating a business is about navigating challenges and believing in yourself. “Accept challenges, keep learning, and remember that improvement is a never-ending process”.

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The Disrupt Podcast tells the stories of the world top entrepreneurs, developers, creators, and digital marketers and help empower them to teach others the skills they used to grow their careers, chase their passions and create financial freedom for themselves, their families, and their lives, all while living out their true purpose. We recognize the fact that most young people are opting to skip college in exchange for entrepreneurship and real life experience. This Podcast is designed to give them a taste of that.

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