Prepare To Work Hard

The Inventive Journey
Episode #333
Prepare To Work Hard
w/ Rick Garcia
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What This Episode Talks About:

Prepare To Work Hard

"Prepare to work hard and give it the runway that it deserves. What I mean by runway is it's going to take longer than what you think to be successful. I think people are looking for short-term wins, get rich quick, whatever it is. If you think in terms of decades instead of in the next two years I am going to make this much money. Put some longevity behind your plan and then go execute your plan. The correct expectations will be set and you will build a solid foundation. You will learn a ton along the way and have a lot of fun. Think a little longer terms than short term."


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What Is The Inventive Journey?

Starting and growing a business is a journey. On The Inventive Journey, your host, Devin Miller walks with startups along their different journeys startups take to success (or failure). You also get to hear from featured guests, such as venture firms and angel investors, that provide insight on the paths to a successful inventive journey.

ai generated transcription

 is prepared to work hard put put uh and and give it the runway that it deserves and when i say by what i mean by runway is you know uh it's going to take longer than what you think to be successful it's got yeah i think people are looking for short-term wins right uh uh get rich quick whatever it is but but if you think in terms of decades you know in instead of in the next two years i'm gonna make this much money right if you think in terms of you know put some longevity behind your plan right and then go execute on your plan because those the correct expectations will be set uh you'll build a solid foundation you'll learn a ton along the way you'll have a lot of fun but uh but that that's kind of i guess that would be my advice is you know think in terms think a little think a little longer term instead of short term [Music] hey everyone this is devin miller here with another episode of the inventive journey i'm your host devin miller the serial entrepreneur that's grown several startups in the seven and eight figure businesses as well as the founder and ceo of miller ip law where we help startups and small businesses with their patents and trademarks if you ever need help with yours just go to grab some time to chat and we're always here to help now today we've got another great uh guest on the podcast uh rick garcia and uh rick started out in high school in his own words he was a hustler to make money um he also played high school or played baseball for a bit and then entered into the workforce and didn't do well holding a job again in his own words uh went to i think it was around 15 jobs or so and then his aunt and his wife at the time now ex-wife worked at american airlines so he went and worked there um also wanted to be a lawyer and so did uh did some undergraduate work and uh or studied the degree but then decided he didn't want to be a lawyer either and so read a book that was uh thinking grow rich and and was uh thinking uh or looking onto things that he could grasp onto based on that moved to texas started working for a telecom company in a sales job figured out that was his very how to monetize his passion joined another company made an accent started his current business and has also been joining and acquiring a couple other businesses along the way so with that much as an introduction welcome on the podcast rick thanks devin i appreciate it uh i forgot we shared that much so it's interesting to make all that public that's great absolutely so it makes for a good there makes for a full and a good journey so with that now let's go back a bit in time um to when uh you were in high school was uh or what were hustling to make money and how your journey got started there yeah you know uh i think i think it goes before high school to be honest right i mean i was uh i was a kid that would mow your lawn i'd knock on your door ask you if you wanted to have your you know your lawn mowed and you know roll rolled around in a riding mower and things like that so i was fortunate enough to have one of those guys around but um you know so i think it started a bit before high school but rolled into high school did uh you know played played a lot of sports played baseball forever um you know when i finished there uh you know i started out with a little little college ball and then and then quickly realize that that's not making my uh it's not it's not going to achieve my financial success by trying to try to play you know extend my high school sort of experience and and play some more ball so uh you know figured out then you know during that time i started to have these small jobs you know a restaurant or a you know a a a fast food place you know kind of the normal high school sort of jobs didn't like any of them really you know i just i just uh i didn't like any of them maybe i was a bit entitled perhaps i mean now that i'm an adult and i feel like i'm an adult and have a better understanding of what i was thinking then uh it may have been a little entitlement or something like that but uh it didn't do well at holding a job i always thought i could do something more you know you know i could be more aggressive and do this and do that so um that's kind of where it rolled into i will say that i tried a lot of different things growing up as a kid to to hustle to make some money you know i lived fairly close so i was in texas is where i worked for american airlines and i ended up moving to seattle um but but there i was pretty close to the mexican border as an example so i sold some blankets before you know i i sold lots of different things um you know i had friends that were doing uh lots of email campaigns uh when i was just getting out of high school and this was well before can spam uh and so i did a little emailing for your own sort of nutritional brands and all that stuff so i kind of figured that out for a little while and did some of that but there was a you know a lot of sort of trial and error i had a tobacco license in texas and and sold cigars online you know so there was quite a few things uh that i had kind of given a run but nothing really stuck i didn't know what i didn't know to be honest now one question i'll ask because that's a whole bunch of very different jobs and that they're you know pretty well across the board sounds like a lot of fun or at least a lot of different opportunities but was you know was a was it that it was a hard time holding down a job because you didn't like having a boss over you was it just you hadn't found something that you enjoyed and so it was kind of a slug or you're saying you know you mentioned maybe a bit of entitlement earlier on or kind of what made you kind of decide to move between jobs or what or what was it about those jobs that just didn't quite suit you yeah so so i will say this i i was during that trial and error sort of period of kind of start wanting to start something i i did have those jobs off and on when i landed at american airlines i think i was 20 years old or so i landed at american airlines i stayed there for about five years and the reason i stayed there for five years is because like i told you i had uh my aunt and uh and my uh my future uh a bride ex-wife now but my future bride there she uh they were both working next to me all the time and so i had no choice but to really sort of settle down accept a little bit of responsibility and and be you know be productive and so so not always thinking about what else was i going to do right but but in my mind you know i'd finish that and i'd always had something else that i was working on or trying to do you know and i look at that today and i go boy what a loser you know that's kind of what i think about myself right but but i wasn't quite fulfilled in just kind of working a job and feeling like a job was my was going to be what i was going to do so that was early on i was i did not feel that i was going to work for someone early on now you're saying okay no bit a bit of a mixture of uh you know finding what you're wanting to do not wanting to work for someone else figuring out what that means for you and where that's going to lead you and so you you know you you're settled on the job of the airlines and you do that you said for was it five or six years um and then after that you know kind of what so you worked under then it sounds like you'll have to correct me from wrong that was it during that time or after that time you also thought about being a lawyer and reading the book or kind of that is transition you're kind of going from there going those different areas yeah so so i i started off in college you know doing a criminal justice degree did that for you know three years i think and like i said i was kind of on that extended plan you know i i went to college for six years right and so i tried a lot of different classes and tried to figure out what it was but when i went to um when i went to this orientation for law school and then i i met a bunch of people there and i was like these people are really serious about their job these are about their careers and i i just quite i didn't feel like a grown-up uh you know i i'm a you know a summer baby essentially so i was a bit younger when i graduated high school but i still didn't feel like i was anywhere near equipped probably intellectually to be honest i was probably you know a bit sort of not embarrassed but a bit intimidated right and and when i you know in a room with a bunch of smart people i was like oh boy this may not be for me uh so that was during that time so all that was all right after right after high school and then and then running for the next five years trying to figure out that's what i was going to do right you always have these aspirations it's interesting i'm going through this now and with uh you know thinking about uh am i related my current relationship you know uh you always have these grand sort of ideas of what you're going to do in life right and and when reality starts to set in on you may not achieve what you initially thought you were going to achieve you know you get you get a little discouraged and so uh i think that's where i kind of hit on with with being a lawyer so i was i was trying to figure out what was going to be next you know where was i going to go and then uh you know i ended up moving to seattle with my girlfriend and uh in working at the phone company i had two job offers at uh when i arrived to seattle number one was alaska airlines and number two was us west the phone company and uh and i thought you know i've already done the airline thing for a good while and it's colder in seattle than it is in texas it's wetter in seattle texas and i thought well i don't i don't want to be outside at all so uh so i ended up taking the the phone company job and and that's kind of where where things kind of kicked off and at the time i was reading a bunch of motivational material right so maybe it was some tony robbins maybe it was some zig ziglar maybe it was you know lots of different things but uh think and grow rich and holding hell certainly was a book that i kind of carried uh i didn't carry it along with me literally but but i kind of had that as you know what i had remembered and i i think i read it 23 times or so that's a good amount of time to read it and hopefully a bit of it sunk in and it definitely makes sense so so you say okay bounced around a lot you know did the airlines for a bit of time thought about being a lawyer now you know and then decided okay gonna go into the telecoms and i think about when i we chatted a bit before it was also the the more of the sales position and selling that was interesting to you and hopefully not putting two million words in your mouth but then i i believe that after you kind of found that that was a bit more where you're passionate about passionate about and how you can monetize that passion you went and joined a different company and then made an exit at one point is that right yeah yeah so so i'll walk you through that so essentially what happens is i work at the phone company for five years and they do an excellent job of training they do an excellent job of teaching you the very basics of things right uh and then and then kind of releasing you out so we did that um and that was um you know again it was five years worth of training there uh i went to a competitive phone company after that it was mci at that time i kind of figured out here's the deal this is my skill or this is not just selling but selling was certainly where i were kind of excelled but but telecom in general telecom in general is where i'm gonna you know make my living and i forced myself right and this is the early 2000 late 1990s and early 2000s when everyone was kind of migrating to software and software was the cool thing right i stayed in telecom i forced myself to stay in telecom because i felt like you needed to put in your time into whatever you know every book tells you right you're going to do a business do a business that you know right you've got it it's something that you know uh and so i forced myself to stay in telecom went to mci for a couple of years and then i went to a small company after that and the small company i went to in fact the uh the former ceo of that company he he's long sold out of the telecom space now he owns 20 or 30 luxury car dealerships around the country right but i learned so much from him in the course of two years it was a small telecom company uh and and that was when i realized look i could start my own telecom company i could do my own telecom this is not you know it's a it's a difficult business because it's a regulated business and there's a lot of components to it but when you know the business thank you very much u.s west for the training right an mci when you know the business uh it's something that you think of and you go i can actually do this and again going back to my napoleon hill is you know uh a is acquired a specific uh specific applied knowledge right you can monetize specific applied not so if you know something very very well you can build a business around it right better than anybody else you can build a business around it so i went to that small company sold that company sold i wasn't a shareholder in that i was just uh you know it was a the leadership in their sales department essentially and then i went to another company in this company uh it was called 360 networks and 360 networks was a carrier for the carrier so what i got to see for a person that knew i was going to one day be in the telecom business for myself i looked at this and i thought well i could go to the largest carriers in the country and i i can speak to their leadership i understand what they're doing i understand their marketplace and i get to see how they acquire customers so i had this sort of perched view on hundreds of companies and how they operated and so for me it was like oh this is exciting right i get to see how everything runs uh and so i was fortunate enough to to do to stay in that role six or seven years and then ended up doing some mergers and acquisitions for them uh in that same company so acquiring different uh organizations and and bundling them with our organization at that time uh when we sold that business i started g12 communications oh and that makes sense so you sold that business said okay you know i i like how you hit on you know when you become an expert in the you know or gain a lot of experience in a given area it does be it does or lend itself to saying why don't i do it now some people are saying i don't want to be here run my own business i don't want to take on that you know additional stress or additional you know those type of things but on the other hand if you're more entrepreneur minded or want to do it on your own you're saying okay i can figure this out i can do it now sometimes you get into and you figure out hey that was a lot harder than i thought it would be but nonetheless it gives you a foundation to build from and i think that that is oftentimes the impetus for you know where what uh moves you to to make that leap and so now you make that leap you go start your own business you're building that you're growing it and you're saying i can do this how did it go in other words was it a great success and skyrocket to the top or was it bumpy and you know had the good times and the bad times was it all downhill or kind of how did it go for you i i'll say this for those of you who who want an eight to five job and who want to knock off at the end of the day and and and let the tv wash over you and and hang out in a in a lounger being an entrepreneur isn't for you because i it was i didn't know what i didn't know all the all the little starts and stops along the way you know the the 10 you know little businesses that i kind of dabbled in to try here and there all of them were part of why we succeeded at g12 right but i still you get into an organ you get into a business and you think you know what you're doing and then you quickly realize that this gets really really deep and it gets really really hard and there's no one behind you there's no one to to help shake it off there's no one to help you know alleviate the the aggravation the stress right the uh the just the hard hard work there's no one to to to alleviate from you you you are the backstop for everything uh and so it was rough i will say it was a rough start um you know uh we started it was me and a partner we started together uh and one thing that i learned along the way is uh there's there's some things that some people are good at and there's some things that you know that that others aren't so here's how it ended up i was not the financial and legal guy but but i partnered up with a financial and legal guy right uh and so that made all the difference in the world right and and to boot he had a work ethic at the time you know just as strong as mine and so uh you know we could we could really work through anything together so that was that's really what's what's been just uh you know i've heard the sayings my the best business partners are me myself and i right but but ultimately i'm very fortunate to work with this individual because he brings a level of sophistication to our our legal and financial and corporate organization that i couldn't bring right i could bring product development i can bring you know uh selling this product i can i can build a product and support the product but i couldn't bring those other corporate sort of uh uh skill sets right and so uh having having a partner uh with me to do that has been great but i i will tell you at the very beginning it was rough and we're a phone company right so early on i can tell you uh this is probably i probably shouldn't say this is kind of funny but you know we take some boxes and go hand deliver them to some places before we kind of didn't know you know kind of the everything that we need to know so just to check it out and just to see how it worked out so our first few customers hand delivered some things uh in fact in a law office uh one of our very first customers in the law office i saw um the lead attorney fell down had a basically a stroke in the hallway and they ran to our phones and dialed 9-1-1 and i remember thinking in my head wow i hope 9-1-1 is going to work i mean we've done everything right let's see if this 9-1-1 works and that's not the time you want to you want to have something go wrong i was in the office when this happens right and i'm just like wow and and the authorities were there and i was like oh we did everything right you know we did do everything right um but but it's still it's like you're you know this is you you just don't know what you don't know and so it's very very hard i will say that once you do it for a while and we're you know we're a 10 year old 11 year old company now uh now we've got you know 50 people and you know there's you know job wrecks open for people and growing and growing and and now you know we're we're kind of the the old kid on the block now essentially right you know it's like we we know exactly what we're doing we're scaling appropriately you know not too fast not too slow and and now it's a fun fun organization to be a part of and you look at this and you go that was uh you know call it seven or eight years of just real real grind like you know like you know get your overalls on you know you got your shovel and you're digging you know so so uh it was seven or eight years of a real grind and and you know the last four or five years have just been amazing oh and i think that and that but i think that there's a lot of commonalities in the sense that most people you know i think that you go into a business with a lot of naivety in the sense oh it'll be a year or two and then we'll just take off and then we'll get things in place we'll have all these customers and we'll be so busy we don't know what to do occasionally that's the case and i'm sure that happens but i think for the vast majority it is that first while is a grind and then you get a bit more success and you get a bit more stability and it's still a grind and then you actually have a company that you're saying okay we're doing well and it's still a grind and so i don't think i like that how you said if you wanted to do an eight to five clocking clock outlet tv wash over i don't think it's now on the other hand i think that you also have a lot of fun you can have either direct your own you know direct your own destiny and you can have a lot more control and you can be a lot you know you can have a lot of reward and there's success and freedom but it has to be with the understanding it's not just going to be like it's on tv where you go into work and work for a couple hours in the morning you go get a lunch off take off early and you know life is just miraculously wonderful and you never have to work again i think it's far from that but i think there's also that as you get bigger as you have that patience you you get that more step or stable business with the with the building success so i think it's a a great takeaway well as that kind of brings us up to where it's at where you're at today and kind of walks us through your journey i always end off the podcast uh with a couple questions so we'll jump to those now so the first question i always ask is along your journey what was the worst business decision you ever made and what'd you learn from it oh uh the worst business decision i've ever made uh um i think the worst business decision i made was was really um early on i will tell you early on you you try to cut corners and what i mean by cutting corners is you don't hire an expert where you need an expert you don't hire you know someone who knows something that you don't know and you just try to wing it right or or you'll fix it later let's just get this done and you'll fix it later and in some cases that comes back to really really bite you so i think some of the worst decisions i've ever made were around uh to be honest this you know not doing some legal documents properly or hiring an attorney to do some legal documents properly uh whether that's you know uh uh maybe a small asset purchase an asset purchase agreement you know i mean uh uh you know just stuff like that hiring the right individuals to do the serious stuff like if you're gonna if you're gonna cut corners you know uh you know and i don't advise cutting quarters anymore now that i'm a little more seasoned right uh but when you're bootstrapping you make some some good decisions to move you forward because you're trying to kick the door down and you also make some really bad decisions and so what i would say is well here's what i've learned where it really really matters and i would say financial decisions legal decisions you know uh corporate structures and stuff like that where it really really matters um you really need some experts in your corner and and you can you can talk to a lot of different people there's a lot of resources out there and you can do it inexpensively if you needed to but boy having the right resources not necessarily in place but finding the right resources be resourceful instead of being cheap okay so so that's what i would learn i would say is important to learn no and i think that you know it is it is that you know a bit of that cash when kids you're getting going and it is you're you're always having more things to spend money on the money to spend as a startup in a small business as you're just getting started and you're saying okay you know do i spend it on payroll do i spend it on rent do i spend it on product development or marketing or do i spend it on legal or do i spend it on accounting and you're saying all these competing things and i think it is to your point you know first of all you know you're having to balance competing interests but you need to realize okay where are the areas where i can be resourceful i may be able to do it on my own at least for a period of time with some sweat equity and where the experts say hey i really just have to have somebody that knows what they're doing here because it's going to either hamper the business or set it up for failure or anything else if i don't and having that ability to understand or to navigate that i think is a great takeaway but it's easy also easy to understand how you might you can make that mistake of saying hey i don't have the money i'll get it i'll do it myself when you really don't have the the resources or the ability to do it so i think it's a definitely a lesson to learn and an easy mistake to make yeah following up that the second question i always ask is if you're talking to somebody that's just getting into a startup or a small business would be the one piece of advice you'd give them boy if you're there if you're there and you decided to do it how exciting for you it's it's very exciting right i i wouldn't do anything different i love my business i love being in business i love that you know our our employees are my family essentially and we we we support their families and and it's uh it's the best thing that i've ever done right start uh g12 but what what i would say is prepare to work hard to put but and and give it the runway that it deserves and when i say by what i mean by runway is you know it's going to take longer than what you think to be successful it's got i think people are looking for shirt short-term wins right uh get rich quick whatever it is but but if you think in terms of decades you know in instead of in the next two years i'm gonna make this much money right if you think in terms of you know put some longevity behind your plan right and then go execute on your plan because those the correct expectations will be set uh you'll build a solid foundation you'll learn a ton along the way you'll have a lot of fun but uh but that that's kind of i guess that would be my advice is you know uh think in terms think a little think a little longer term instead of short term yeah no and i i think that that's a you know if nothing else it could take away a lot of time you're saying hey everything's you know i got to put out the fires now that are the the most urgent and there's some true to that if you have fires and it's going to burn the building down in your business sound so to speak you need to do that but if all you're doing is putting out today's fires and never looking at the long term you're forever going to be running a short-term business that isn't going to have the success that you need so i like that having that long-term outlook on it so well with it as we wrap up the the the podcast we wrap up this episode if people want to reach out to you they want to be a customer they want to be a client they want to be an employee they want to be an investor they want to be your next best friend any or all of the above what's the best way to reach out to you contact you find out more yeah so the website's it's you can head over to g12 you could send me an email r garcia find me on linkedin it's rick garcia you'll you know at g12 you'll find me on linkedin there so feel free to reach out uh send me a note uh we'd love to chat and meet you and uh and listen to your story and and maybe we'll trade stories and it's fun to talk to entrepreneurs all the time awesome well i definitely encourage people to reach out connect and support a great business especially if you're looking at anything in the telecom and with that um as we uh as we wrap up the podcast thank you again uh for coming on the podcast it's been a fun it's been a pleasure now for all of you that are listeners if you have your own journey to tell and you'd like to be a guest on the podcast we'd love to have you just go to and apply to be on the show also as a listener if you can make sure to click subscribe click like click follow click share because we want to make sure that everybody finds out about all these awesome episodes and last but not least if you ever need help with your with your business with any patents trademarks or anything else just go to grab some time with us to chat we're always here to help thank you again rick for coming on the podcast and wish the next leg of your journey even better than the last thanks for having me devon take care

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