Posts

My Journey from CEO to CTO to just being me

It's easy to get distracted by titles. I have been the CEO of a mapping startup, CTO of a book publishing company and Product Owner at a secure collaboration SaaS platform. But I've never been happier than just being, "Mash, the guy who helps people get stuff done." Before I can tell you about that, I need to tell you about this… When I was 14 my Mom, a 5-foot tenacious Vietnamese business woman, taught me how to sew. Yes, needle-and-thread-in-a-sewing-machine-making-clothes kind of sewing. She would drive me down to the fabric store and we would pick out cool colors and Hawaiian prints that my friends might like on their Clam-Diggers. If you don’t know what a clam-digger is, imagine going down to the beach to forage around in the shallow water for clams. If you wear pants, they will get soaked. But if you wear shorts, you’ll get cold. So clam-diggers are basically short-pants. At 14 I didn’t want to learn how to sew clam-diggers, but I did know that my friends and I

New CORL8 Demo Video

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 I’ve decided to document as much of this startup journey as I can. Maybe another founder out there needs to see what I’m going through. Started with a demo video and a YouTube channel. Take a look and follow along. Subscribe to the CORL8 YouTube Channel

CORL8 is making easy-to-use frameworks for startup Marketers

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 I've been on silent mode for the last 6 months but it's time to emerge from the cave and start talking about CORL8. If you're a startup founder or small business marketer, we've created a platform to make it easy for you to get organized start making progress on your fundamentals. I'll share more details as we roll out the beta program. But for now I encourage you to take a look, give it a try and send us some feedback. We really want to do this for you, we want to help you and make your life easier and more productive. Check it out, www.CORL8.com

Follow Your Heart

"If you want to follow your heart, you must be in touch with your heart." Even though you may feel busy, it's important to take time to reflect, journal, meditate and listen to your heart. It's not easy, but the alternative is to be swept away by the desires and motives of others.  I discovered that I like to wake up slowly. After spending many years waking up to alarms, rushing through my coffee and jumping into remote meetings with teams across the globe, I now set aside 2 hours to wake up at my own pace. That doesn't mean I'm a slouch or lazy. It means I set aside time to enjoy the morning, enjoy my coffee and breakfast, spend time in prayer and meditation, and write in my journal.  This has been incredibly fulfilling and makes me a better person for the rest of the day. But this time is not easy to capture if you don't put it on your calendar. I specifically have a time slot set aside for waking up which blocks my calendar as busy and I don't h

Slow and steady wins the race

I’ve been working on Radi8 for 3 years now. I’ve started and stopped and started and stopped. I’ve given up... then picked up the pieces and started new. I’ve tossed them out, turned left and picked up different ones. Sometimes I think entrepreneurship is a curse, but more often I think it’s a blessing. The depression that follows a failure is quickly replaced by hope as a new insight emerges. Then I dust off and start climbing again. My hands sweat even now as I think about how I’m going to make it to the next ledge. If you’re trudging, don’t give up. It’s the tortoise that wins the race.

Beyond Your Wildest Imagination

What does the world look like if you succeed beyond your wildest dreams? This is a question I asked myself recently as I was working on the business plan for another startup. I didn’t like the answer. Let’s start at the beginning. I had discovered a way to amplify marketing content using new technology. It would be faster, cheaper and spread content all over the world with just a few clicks. Businesses would be able to reach customers in every corner of the internet and spread their marketing messages 100x further than organic sharing. Enterprises would ditch email marketing and spend their marketing budget on my new company. This sounded great from a money-making-machine point of view. But then I asked myself what would the world look like if I succeeded beyond my wildest dreams? What if every single company used my service to amplify their content 100x? Would I even want to live in that world? Yuck. There are two types of entrepreneurs I’ve encountered. Those who are enamored b

My Startup Toolkit

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When I started my first company, FastPencil, in 2007, there weren't a lot of tools to get up and running quickly. But I knew it would be critical to leverage technology if I wanted to stay lean and get to first customer fast! So we immediately setup Google Apps for email and document collaboration. We also used Skype and a few other online services. Today, there are a lot more services available for startups, and they're better than ever. Here's my basic startup toolkit: Nimble Social CRM Every company needs a CRM and most go straight to Salesforce, but I met John Ferrara from Nimble at a Social Selling conference and I'm blown away at what he has been able to do with social CRM. Some of you may remember John from the company Goldmine. Goldmine was one of the first popular CRM applications available. It helped you stay organized and connected to your contacts. Nimble does all this and more... for today's social selling environment. I started using Nimble as