Monday, December 12, 2011
The honest truth, 5 Questions with young self-made mogul Andrew Fashion...
Andrew Thompson (aka. Andrew Fashion) speaks with Hugo D. Aviles, in depth, on what it takes to be a young entrepreneur.
5 Question Interview
Would you ever settle for a nine to five? or is the hustle of being self made the way to go?
As bad as it sounds, I would probably do illegal shit before I would do a nine to five. I would rather become homeless than to go to a nine to five. I have never had a nine to five or a regular job. Actually, I once worked at a computer shop when I was sixteen years old for about six months, that’s when I realized that it just wasn’t for me.
Ambition and stubbornness are two traits that go hand and hand, as a innovator yourself, what mindset do you feel you need to have in this day of age to get past all the bullshit, and make it to the top?
I would say it’s definitely my persistence and stubbornness. I am not much of an astrological person but you know some of the girls that I have dated always pull up the astrological signs and bring up mine. Sometimes I feel that shit is right on point, it’s crazy because it says that I’m stubborn and persistent and those are two traits that I see I have over everyone in my house, my friends, and mostly everyone I have ever met. When I want to do something, no matter how long it takes, I will get it done, always. If I want to get a company done, if I want to build a website, if I want to launch a new product, I am very very annoyingly persistent. I will always get it done, and I will always get it done my way.
When it comes to raising venture capital from investors, friends, or family, to start a dream…What tricks of the trade would you advise today’s young Entrepreneurs coming up?
Raising venture capital is really tough. It took me..hmmmm…from the time I almost declared bankruptcy it took me a good solid, I said early a couple months, but honestly it took about 6 good months. And that’s not a lot of time considering that I didn’t have a job and I had to hustle and do freelance work on the side in order to get help here and there. It was really difficult, and I have seen this lot. With friends and partners I have met. Seeking venture capital, a lot of people think you need a business plan and honestly, you do not need a business plan. You only really need a business plan if it’s some complicated complex project where you need to raise millions and millions of dollars. I have seen this over and over again with successful entrepreneurs and friends. You need to hustle and go through every connection you have to seek investors. I hit up my mom, my mother’s ex husband, my friends, my friends friends, I hit up everybody and at the end of the day I only found about five people. So I decided to hit the Internet and do research. I kept networking, and to tell you the truth. It was actually facebook that got me my investors. I had about 1500 friends at the time, and it was through that, that it reached some investors attention. Then I wrote a business summary, a bio, projections, how much money is needed, where the money is going. When I was going to pay them back, I still have all the documents still. But basically you need to write the guts, start networking, hustle, and you have to believe in the plan, and believe in the company, and most importantly…believe in yourself! You have to sell yourself, I might not seem like I’m a good salesman, but when your pitching your idea to raise money, you have to hustle. You have to believe in yourself and be a salesman. That’s all I did, and boom $150,000.00 six months later!
The key to success is simple…one needs Motivation (Hunger) and a Hustle (Plan of Action).. What next?
I guess that’s the problem I see with a lot of people, is that a significant amount of them would come up with an idea, and they just want to do it. A lot of people come up to me with an idea telling me that they want to do this and they want to do that. But no one does there full due diligence, they never ever do their research. They never educate themselves; they just come up with an idea and try to work it. They don’t know if there is a market, if there is even money to be made in the business, how they’re going to get clients, they just start without any plan at all. When I come up with an idea, I do all my research to see if its profitable, how I’m going to market it, what I’m going to name it. You have to do your full due diligence. I think that’s the problem with young entrepreneurs, is that they just jump in. I don’t think that there is anything wrong with that, it’s just that you have to do your homework. You will save yourself a lot of time if you just do your research.
We once heard of a great quote that stated, “You have to make a million, than you have to lose a million, in order to keep a million.” Do you believe this parable holds some truth?
Absolutely, not because I have lived it, but because I have seen it time and time again. It happened with my mother’s ex husband, and many famous millionaires. I think everybody who has made a lot of money, has lost it. I guess because it comes so fast or they just weren’t expecting it. I’m not sure if it’s just destiny or that’s just how the whole world works, you know I think it’s just some type of test to see if you are supposed to be a person with that kind of money. To see if you were a person that even deserved it in the first place. So I think it’s just a test.