Hustle + Opportunity + Optimism = Luck

When I was 16 years old I met Monte Lipman, the President of Universal Records. His personal driver dropped him off in an all black S-Class Mercedez Benz Sedan in front of my high school. It was a Saturday, and he was the only reason I would show up to school on a Saturday. He was there to speak to students at a special career day.

Unfortunately, I don’t remember anything he said that day except for his recipe for getting lucky. It’s the recipe he says he has followed, and got him to where he is in life. So, a struggling but curious kid like myself paid close attention. Here’s what he wrote on the chalk board.


The Washington Post Praises My AT&T Ad

This year I was featured in a AT&T commercial that aimed to highlight African American tech entrepreneurs. It was a honor to be selected, and i’m forever grateful to AT&T for choosing me.

The spot so far has caught a lot of attention. If you are reading this it’s probably because you saw the spot during Empire on FOX, Love & Hip Hopon VH1, BET, or on TVONE.

Millions of people saw it, and so many have reached out wanting to know more.  Joining my email list is the best way to do that (look at the top of the sidebar).


How To Make Networking Worth It

Back when I first decided I wanted to be an entrepreneur, the biggest advice I got was to go network. I’m sure you hear this all the time.

So that’s what I did. I went to meetup groups, conferences, business lunches, and collected tons of business cards. When I got home they sat on the desk for a day or two before I followed up with them. Sound familiar? Networking was easy, activating the network is where the real magic is.

When you activate your network, that’s when it indeed becomes worth something. I learned to never network expecting to receive, but to give. Provide value.


5 Real Talk Life Lessons From Will Smith

When I think about Will Smith, I think about The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, blockbuster movies, and Gettin’ Jiggy With It. Then about 5 years ago I discovered another side of Will Smith, the inspirational thought provoking side.

He always struck me as a cool dude you can chill with and learn from, then after watching his Tavis Smiley interview (a few other Youtube clips as well) I realized why he is successful. Here are a few of the lessons I picked up on, that you can apply to your life right now.


Companies I’m Looking Forward To In 2015

My story is all about access. I remember going to the library everyday, researching and looking for ways to connect with people in the tech industry. Obviously that was a little tough with a few factors against me: Black, no degree, little coding skills, no mentors. This list could go on forever, but you get the point. It really doesn’t surprise me that many of my favorite organizations or projects i’m personally invested in, are all about creating access.

So in 2015 i’m looking forward to seeing a few companies grow. Here is my list and my “why?” as well.


2014 The Year Of Thankfulness – My Wrap Up

As I write this, it’s Christmas Eve. Random “Merry Xmas” texts are coming in on my phone, while some random holiday movie plays on HBO in the background. For some strange reason every Christmas gets less festive for me, and that kind of sucks. Its one of the rare times I wish I was a kid again. Besides the lack of holiday spirit, usually around this time I get really reflective like most people do around the world. You start to realize that there aren’t many days left in the year, so you either write down new goals, or stress over old regrets.


In order to win, learn how to lose

It’s easy for someones success to look overnight. When I see someone gaining success, I always try to imagine what their journey was like. The struggle, the sleepless nights, the empty bank accounts, mountains of debt, relationships lost, this list could go on. That person learned how to lose!

So why embrace losing? Well, i’m not embracing losing, rather redefining it. 2014 has been a year of much progress for me, but only because I figured out how to lose as well. I just replaced the word lose with grow. When that investor passed on my pitch, I grew. When that relationship didn’t quite work out well, I grew. When I spent all night working on a product launch, and nobody paid attention to it, I grew. Did you grow?


How To Create A Online Course In 4 Easy Steps

For the past 2 weeks we have been spreading around these small promo cards that showcase our upcoming tech conference Tech808 on November 21st (shameless plug, grab your ticket!). On one side it advertises the conference, on the other it gives you a free promo code for a course we made on how we land our interviews.

Here I was, excited that people wanted to learn how we land our guests, but I got more requests on how I created the course itself. There is more than one way to do this, but i’ll detail exactly what I have done, and learned from others doing the same. If you find an even simpler way than the 4 steps below, post in the comments.


The Only Bad Idea Is Not Taking Action

I was talking with my good friend Jimi Olaghere, who is founder of The topic of the discussion was: Ideas. We were going over product ideas for gamers, since a new generation of consoles were released. The conversation went beyond it’s initial start and we just started wondering where good ideas are born. Here is how I feel about this topic.

There are no bad ideas. In my 7 year journey of being an entrepreneur I discovered bad ideas are temporary, because they turn into good ideas when action is applied. You learn, you grow, and you discover how to improve the idea. If the idea doesn’t work, sometimes you realize a new one from the experience.


The Men Who Failed 1,000 Times

Welcome to the club. That’s what you hear when you tell someone about your bad day at work. They go through the same shit you do. But that’s the magic of being human. We are all the same, we breathe the same, and most of all we bleed the same. So what makes the ordinary extraordinary? What makes the smart, smart? The dumb, dumb? Effort, it’s the only thing we can control. I’m learning about effort in a whole new light these days. Effort is the gas that keeps our entrepreneur engine going. Even taking the topic slightly off of entrepreneurship, effort is what it takes to succeed at virtually anything.  I never looked at it that way before. I was blind, but now I see.  So why do most people lack effort? Pain.