This video is amazing. Whenever you think you have it harder then most, remember it could be worst. Be thankful for the blessings you have and seek to help those that are less fortunate. We are all strong in our own way – How will you show your strength?
Everyone dreams of success. The people who realize those dreams are willing to outwork everyone else. Not only do they outwork everyone, they have the persistence to overcome obstacles. Giavanni Ruffin and Eric Thomas were able to create a beautiful visualization of this mindset. Enjoy!
Last week I wrote about 10 people to follow on Twitter. The post was so popular that I’m following it up with 12 blogs every entrepreneur should be tuned into. This list is in no way a comprehensive one. Each site listed contains interesting information and great forums of conversation. Here we go:
1. A VC – Fred Wilson is a principle at Union Square Ventures and known to share his unique thoughts. I find the blog to be informative and easy to read. Posts regularly include video as well which keeps the reader interested.
2. Blog Maverick – Mark Cuban is one of my role models. Each blog post is jam packed with information. His no frills approach means there aren’t tons of videos, photos, etc. By interjecting his humor regularly he makes reading the posts enjoyable.
3. Joel Gascoigne – The founder of Buffer and a great thinker pertaining to startups. Posts are very well thought out and include tons of photos, graphics and videos. While Joel only blogs about every 3 – 4 days, the wait is well worth it!
4. Steve Blank – The man is a legend. Former entrepreneur and now a professor at Stanford, he shares wise words of wisdom. Blank’s blog has almost 45,000 followers which shows how many people care about what he thinks. Posts are always great and usually include some very interesting analysis.
5. Next View Ventures – The blog is updated by David Beisel, Rob Go, and Lee Hower. Each post varies in topic but can cover entrepreneurship, founder advice, investing insights, or general views on business and current trends. It’s always great to get a peek into well respected VC’s minds so don’t miss out on the opportunity.
6. This Is Going To Be BIG – Charlie O’Donnell of Brooklyn Bridge Ventures provides great insights into technology and investing. His blog covers a wide range of topics and includes a lot of emotional and personal insights. Great read!
7. Both Sides of The Table – The blog of Mark Suster is always worth the time. He includes graphics, photos and videos to compliment his terrific analysis and predictions. A former entrepreneur who now does angel and venture investing, Suster is able to share a perspective from “both sides of the table.”
8. Feld Thoughts – Possibly my favorite blog. Brad Feld intertwines business, investing and life beautifully. From in-depth analysis of his marathons (he has a goal to run 50 marathons in 50 states before the age of 50) to board room etiquette, Feld puts it all out in the public. If you enjoy seeing the human element of business than don’t miss this one!
10. Experiments in Lifestyle Design – Tim Ferriss is one of a kind. Some call him quirky and others can’t get enough of him. Either way you can’t ignore the wealth of knowledge provided on this blog. An added benefit is the wide array of interesting topics that are not normally covered by his peers.
11. Blake Masters – This kid burst on to the tech scene when he began posting notes from Peter Thiels CS183 class at Stanford titled “Startup.” Blog is worth reading for those notes alone. He also is an avid athlete that is very transparent about his progress and goals. Stay tuned to him and his blog as I expect big things in the future.
12. The Art of Non-Conformity – Chris Guillebeau has a unique perspective on life. Recently publishing the book “The $100 Startup” has brought more attention to his blog. I expect to see his approach become more mainstream in the coming years so the blog is a great place to start to understand the future.
There they are. Twelve blogs on technology, investing and life. Check each one out and let me know what you think. As always you can follow me on Twitter @APompliano. If you think I should have included other blogs please include them in the comments. I would love to check them out!
“While some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius.”
This quote is from a very powerful Apple marketing campaign and commercial. It also perfectly describes Eric Thomas. Any high school dropout who was homeless that can become a Ph.D candidate is a true inspiration. If you don’t know who he is than you need to quickly find out.
Why do I care about this inspirational speaker when there are so many available? Eric Thomas does things differently. His following exploded with a viral video that addresses the secret to success. Well here is a hint…..there is no secret. Thomas shows this to young people using stories about his own children. So a great speaker who can market himself, thats it?
Eric just outdid himself once again. Recently he released the first ever motivational speaker mix-tape (The Blueprint 2 Success). Yes, a mix-tape similar to what music artists release. I sat and listened to it in one sitting. From aiming to watch the 3:30am news to getting rid of your cell phone, Eric shares thoughts and ideas that change perspectives. I highly suggest you download the mix-tape and listen for yourself.
Some may call Eric Thomas crazy. I wish we had more people like him in this world. Gone are the days of driven and self-motivated individuals. Everyone is looking for the overnight success or get-rich-quick scheme. When it doesn’t happen they blame others. Eric is doing his part to bring people back down to reality and help them to realize that success starts and ends with hard work. Only you are responsible for your outcome. Live by these ethos and it will be very hard to fail.
I am a big fan of Eric. Do you agree with Eric’s ideas? Have you implemented any of his teachings in the past? Share your thoughts and reactions below. You can also follow me on Twitter @APompliano!
It is no secret that I am a big fan of Twitter. The service has completely changed the game for obtaining real-time information. When something happens around the world….get on Twitter and watch the madness ensue.
Here are 10 people that I follow and suggest you do too. Each one brings unique perspectives and humor to my daily review of Twitter. Most even respond if you contribute to the conversation!
1. Tim Ferriss (@tferriss) – Tim is the author of “The 4 Hour Workweek” and “The 4 Hour Body.” As an angel investor in Stumbleupon, Facebook, Evernote, etc he knows the startup scene. Great articles and videos to keep you entertained.
2. Aaron Levie (@levie) – Aaron is the CEO at Box. His Twitter account is littered with humorous anecdotes about business, Silicon Valley, and general misconceptions in life. Be prepared to laugh.
3. Joel Brown (@addictd2success) – Joel is the founder of addicted2success.com. Motivation is contagious and Joel is driving an online movement. Get ready to start doing things after checking out Joel’s account.
4. Brad Feld (@bfeld) – Brad is a Managing Director of Foundry Group and accomplished entrepreneur. An avid blogger, Brad provides a refreshing view on business while also injecting his personal life to show he’s human.
5. Srinivas Rao (@skooloflife) – Great idea and great perspective. Srinivas is determined to teach the world the things that they should have learned in school. Want to join the conversation? Follow him and get started.
6. Avish Bhama (@avishbhama) – Avish is the Founder of Vaurum and a great source of information. Great articles throughout the account usually leads to great conversation as well!
7. Ben Parr (@benparr) – Ben is the former Editor-At-Large at Mashable. Big time commentary on technology and social media. By uploading lots of videos Ben also keeps things fresh and interesting.
8. Vivek Wadhwa (@wadhwa) – Columnist at Washington Post with appointments at some of the greatest universities around the world (yes around the world?). Vivek is a proponent of education but invites conversation on many different topics with his thoughts.
9. Ben T Smith IV (@bentsmithfour) – Ben is a well respected entrepreneur and investor. He shares great articles, thoughts, and advice. Be prepared to learn something if you are following.
10. Steve Case (@stevecase) – Steve is co-founder of AOL. He recently helped push the StartUp Act into reality. Great ideas and even better persistence to see them through. Easy choice for all the articles and videos he shares.
This list is a great start if you are looking to expand your Twitter follows. Each brings their own benefits so proceed with caution. Follow me on Twitter @APompliano, check them out and let me know what you think in the comments below. Feel free to leave other suggestions that you think should have been included on the list as well!
I was approached by a good friend with the request that I write about what was happening at Monroe-Woodbury High School in his hometown. My initial reaction was “I don’t write based on solicitations.” Then I read the story and got the facts. Every so often I run across stories or causes that I think need to be shared with others. Each one of us will face trials and tribulations in our lifetime. The more people that can rally around us, the easier the fight. Vinny Vespa is that person right now.
Vinny is a 14 year old kid from New York who had the world at his feet two weeks ago. A 9th grader, wrestling on Varsity, on his way to represent the state of New York at the National Championships in North Dakota this July. For a kid who had been wrestling his entire life he wanted nothing but to be a champion.
After clinching his spot on the state team, Vinny went to the doctor to find out why he had been getting short of breath all season. The answer was the worst case scenario. Vinny is believed to have Stage 4 Hodgkins Lymphoma. Think about that….a kid who dominated all season on the wrestling mat (31-8 record) did it with stage 4 cancer and only 50% of his normal breathing capacity.
Usually stories like this end with an athlete who moves out of the limelight and begins the battle to merely survive. Vinny appears to have a different idea in mind. According to his supporters Vinny is “cancer’s worst nightmare.” Everything said about him speaks to his character and determination. This kid isn’t worried about surviving, he still wants that national championship.
Think he is going to battle alone? Forget it, that’s where Team VinnyV comes in. Within 48 hours of creating a Twitter account (@teamVinnyV) he had over 1,220 followers. He should break 2,000 today. His family and friends have gotten T-shirts made and organized fundraising events. This 14 year old has served as an inspiration to his community due to his persistence and never die attitude. While both Section IX Wrestling and New York Wrestling News have covered the story, TeamVinnyV would like to get national coverage. We can help them do that.
Please tweet at or about TeamVinnyV. Share this blog post or the other stories. Tell people about Vinny. Buy a t-shirt. Hound ESPN and Sportscenter until they can’t ignore TeamVinnyV anymore. These stories need to be shared. Vinny needs any help you can give him….are you game?
Usually I try to come up with some witty analysis of the videos I post. This video speaks for itself. One quote says it all “I will never apologize for being an American!” God Bless the USA
One of the big stories last week in the tech world was that OMGPOP was bought by game-developer giant Zynga for a reported $210 million. Anyone involved in the deal should have been ecstatic, but new information in the last 2 days has revealed just how timely the deal was.
The founder of OMGPOP, Charles Forman, admitted that the day before the sale of the company he only had $1700 in his personal bank account. Furthermore, before the viral success of Draw Something (the hit game that had 35 million downloads in 6 weeks) OMGPOP was on pace to run out of money in May. Luckily for Forman and his company, Draw Something saw an unparalleled, meteoric rise to success. In the first 6 weeks, 35 million downloads had led to over 3 billion pictures being drawn and led to OMGPOP realizing DAILY revenues in excess of $250,000.
So this sounds like a story of a company who developed a great product and started to make a lot of money and was acquired through a strategic acquisition by the largest game developer in the industry, right? Wrong. This story screams of persistence and an uncanny ability to face risk, while succeeding. I don’t know too many people who could be 60 days away from going bankrupt with only 2 months rent in their personal bank account, that wouldn’t be a little worried. While I am sure Forman had some restless nights, he took the cards dealt to him and made himself an overnight multi-millionaire. (I am sure he used a little hard work and good luck too!)
My point here is that even when things seem like they could not get any worse, remember that the big break you so desperately need could be right around the corner. Never give up without going down fighting. As a young entrepreneur you must kick, scratch, bite, and bully your way to success. It’s not easy and it’s not for everyone. Those that can handle the pressure and thrive in times of uncertainty will be rewarded handsomely. Do you have what it takes to be successful? Could you make life-altering decisions while your world was crashing down around you? Dream big, work hard, and play the game as if you have nothing to lose. Your success in life is depending on it!
Follow me on Twitter @APompliano or Subscribe to my blog!
I recently read Ryan Blair’s book “Nothing to lose, Everything to gain: How I went from gang member to multimillionaire entrepreneur.” I enjoyed it so much that I wanted to write a post about it and hopefully turn a few other people onto the book.
During Blair’s early adolescent years he went through a rough patch that included joining a gang, being arrested, etc. His mother began dating a successful business man around this time. After moving in with him, Blair took the man as his mentor and began to learn how to be successful.
He found out that many of the same attributes that made him tough and successful on the “streets” or in prison, were also qualities that would make him a very successful businessman. The book illustrates what those traits are and how you can apply them to business in your own life.
Many young people these days are guided in the wrong direction and make mistakes. The lifestyle that attracts young men and women is hard to fight against. The temptation is there. This book shows that you do not have to fight that temptation but merely redirect the same passion and energy into a legal endeavor that will become lucrative. I recommend this book for every young entrepreneur, whether you have been a troublemaker in the past or the angel your parents always dreamed of.
You can purchase Ryan’s book on Amazon here:
Follow me on Twitter @APompliano
This footage has been around for almost 20 years. I rarely share where I get my motivation from but this is too good not to share. I have watched it hundreds of times, many of which I needed motivation to continue with something I was doing. This particular video does a great job explaining the situation and what Derek was able to accomplish.
Never give up. Keep going. Success in your endeavors is right around the corner.