As I bask in the glory (hardly) of the first two years of business of JXD Financial I’ve learned many lessons. The first lesson of being an entrepreneur is that this is hard work. Like, really hard. Mentally, emotionally, physically, and financially. I don’t rely on a salary & I’m not promised anything for all the work I put in. I’m not guaranteed a paycheck. I don’t have a safety net. And, I can work 100 hours a week or 20 hours a week and my bank account could still look the same regardless of the effort I put forth. Starting out, my first thought was “I will never work for someone else again. This is MY time to shine and create MY own destiny.” Boy did that thought get flushed down the toilet in a matter of about 30 days. Idealism quickly turned to cold-hearted reality. The immediate matter at hand is to ultimately create a business that generates a paycheck and a profit…while of course helping customers and all that other noble stuff. Monday morning comes and it’s time to make the donuts. Nobody to pay for my leads? Oh well. Leads stink? Oh well. Rent due? Pay up. Client cancels, vendors cancel. Business plan. Game plan. Projections. Investors. ROI/CPA/CPL, huh? Attorney. Yup. Accountant. Also a yup. Many hats and many roles had to get played even before I picked up the telephone to try and sell and make the magic happen.
The second lesson I learned is that the word MY had to quickly get replaced in my vocabulary with the word WE. JXD started as a dream, morphed into an idea, developed into a thought, and hope…but could never have manifested into actionable progress without my business partner, and the network of friends and family that supported us with time, wisdom, well wishes, and money. I’ve always said that humility is one of the most attractive traits in a salesperson, and never before has humility been so resoundingly important. We humbled ourselves. We made mistakes. We fell on our face. We put our pride to the side. We asked. But, We also worked, HARD. We challenged ourselves. We performed. We fought. We got creative. We changed the game. We supported and stuck by one another. Brothers in arms. The “J” in JXD stands proudly for @jasonbandel. I thank him for humbly and sometimes harshly picking up the “legend”, me, off his feet and saying “hey man, don’t lose sight of the dream, we got this!”
The third lesson I learned is that there is a reason it’s called BUSINESS and not FRIENDSHIP. Business is war. Business is fierce. Conducting business is tough. Friends don’t over-charge people for services, products, marketing, whatever it is. Business-people do. Those vendors and service providers need to make money too. Friends don’t sign contracts with one another that hold them liable to guarantees, quotas, privacy, etc…business people do. It’s what protects everyone, and rightfully so. I had to learn to get tough. Again, thanks @jaybandel. Nice guys do tend to finish last. Sorry to say, but I think it’s true.
The fourth lesson I learned is that relationships matter. We would have never made it 24 months if every relationship wasn’t carefully cultivated and utilized as a bridge to get to the next level. While it’s important to be tough, it’s equally important to be fair, and reasonable, and a person of integrity; who considers the partners needs that you’re in a business relationship with. Not every business relationship will be fruitful in every way but every relationship should be treated with respect. I am lucky to say I know some great people in the debt relief industry, and I’ve leaned on those relationships heavily. There are times when bridges need to be mended or come apart for a while but I am confident that everyone we’ve done business with knows that any decisions we made in the course of battle were made with only the best intentions. Thank you to all of you, you know who you are.
Finally, I am reading the book “Mans Search for Meaning” currently. One of the key themes that I interpreted from the book is that man can find pleasure even in the depths of suffrage, as experienced by a prisoner in a concentration camp, during the Holocaust. I’ve learned that I too have the ability to will things into existence. I’ve realized that I can view difficult circumstances with objective eyes, and in doing so can create sales, create opportunities, create happiness, and create a successful business.
The road for @jxdfinancial has not been paved in gold. It’s been marked by many obstacles but the beauty of being an entrepreneur is you could become fluid and build your business as though it’s a piece of art. It can take many shapes…and it has. We forge on, with lofty goals, a big vision, and the humility of having to do & endure the daily tedium of effort, day in, day out…day in, day out. #danidebt #jxdfinancial