What do you consider your greatest failure to date? What did it teach you?
Morris: Working with the wrong partners and not properly vetting who you do business with. We had business partners who were stealing from the company and almost tanked it in its early stages where every dollar really counted. When you are a non-VC funded entrepreneur, you are always in a rush and forget to take the time to slow down and really do your due diligence.
How do you take your coffee?
Morris: Black, strong and extremely hot - duh.
What is your number one way to inspire positive company morale?
Morris: Work with your employees, really get to know them as people and always remind them that you are a human before a CEO. People love strong leadership, but too often these days leaders forget that your most valuable infrastructure is your people, not your physical assets. Invest in them as humans, not just as employees who perform a specific job duty.
How can a candidate impress you in a job interview?
Morris: Show me that you are self-interested but also that you want to build something bigger than yourself. I'm less focused on your direct skillset as those can be taught/learned... but I'm really looking for a type of person, over a resume.
How do you balance your career and your family life?
Morris: Personally, I love what I do... but I also really like to travel. As our Sales Director taught me, it's not about work/life balance, its more about work/life integration. You don't have to prioritize work over everything, but technology has really allowed me to integrate work into my life even while I am in foreign countries. Stay away from the belief of a 9-5.
Joseph: That is an easy one to lose sight in, especially as your business turns into your life. You live, breathe - and in our cases - you eat and drink it. At the end of the day, though, what good is your business if you don’t enjoy the other things you love too? I try to take the weekends off and turn off the phones at dinner. I also try to unplug and take a few trips a year with my family. It has been a focus of mine to be more present and realize the emails will still be there tomorrow.
What advice would you give to anyone looking to launch a business?
Morris: Do not waver in your dedication to your idea. You will end up sacrificing more than you originally planned - that's inevitable - but you will also grow exponentially as a human through the process if you keep your perspective. Often, traditional advice can come from someone who is truly scared of change, but you can't be an entrepreneur if you aren't going to push the norm.
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