I found myself at the headquarters of Moxie, a company in Sacramento, hosted by a family I had spent the last few days with. It was there that I received a notification I never thought I’d see in my world:
Earthquake Detected! Drop, Cover, Hold On. Protect Yourself.
As I looked up, waiting for something to shake, my colleagues in the office slowly asked if they had received the alert. It turned out the only thing shaking was the vibration of the alerts.
The earthquake was 45 miles away and measured 4.1 on the Richter scale. The team in the office commented, “That’s California,” and nonchalantly continued with their day.
I reflected that stepping into the unknown means experiencing things you have never encountered before. America is vast, and spending this week in the U.S. has been a vastly encouraging experience for me. I have even dusted off my football boots and got involved in coaching the local team. Word is spreading that Michael Davies (my host) has enlisted support and after a 2-0 win on Saturday, the locals are starting to feel the impact of our global presence!
So, why am I here, far from my family and enjoying the Californian climate, so vastly different from the UK? The average temperature here is 26°C, every day bathed in glorious sunlight.
In short, this trip is about expanding my network. I have spent the better part of a year connecting with some amazing individuals, all looking to become better husbands, fathers, and sons. After several discussions about media, I took the brave step to get boots on the ground in the U.S.
You see, everything you do as an entrepreneur is about planting seeds and nurturing them. Over the past year, I have planted these seeds through online relationships, and now it’s time to water them by travelling to discover more.
One of my connections in the U.S. has already led to a Discovery Compass project for Di9ital and the securing of our next no-code project, with other opportunities starting to open up.
One of the most amazing experiences was meeting another member of the group in the U.S. who heads an acting academy called Fab. As we chatted about where I live in the U.K. he mentioned an incredible place he knew, coincidentally just five minutes from my house, offering acting and dance classes! I had never even heard of it! Ironic that I had to travel the globe to discover it, but my two daughters will be thrilled.
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A bold step in the present is paving the way for the future!
Then I had dinner with a couple who were based in Bristol but have now been living in California for over 20 years. They knew everything about Bristol, but our paths had never crossed. Now, thousands of miles away, we’ve connected.
I’m halfway through my time here now, enjoying this LSD trip (Look, See, and Discover), building relationships, and meeting incredible people. Linda, Mike’s wife, spends her time looking after their seven boys, and she and Michael have been so welcoming I’ve felt like an addition to their family. The least I can do is to help them with their football team!
So, here are my midway takeaways to help entrepreneurs build differently and globally:
The future is shaped by stepping into the present unknown.
The most significant risks you take entail stepping out of your comfort zone, even if it means leaving your family for ten days on an expedition. It’s about knowing in your gut that you have to do this. Next time, the tribe will come too!
Years ago it was about asking someone out on a date that eventually led to marriage and children and another time it was about quitting a well-paid job to embrace purpose. It always starts with taking risks and embracing risks.
Risk-taking is the essence of an entrepreneur’s life, and to scale that life, you have to keep taking risks. Many entrepreneurs risk it all when they transition from risk-taking to comfort-making, and slowly, their dreams fade away.
Pioneering makes room for others, and makes way for others to move on
For me, purpose is significant and it is driven by risks. To make room for others, my team, and the opportunities it can bring, I need to pioneer. Playing it safe for me would mean simply looking after my own interests and then I can’t fulfil the breadth and depth of the dream. If you find yourself constantly playing it safe it could mean that a transition is needed.
The team at Cre8ion are focused on expanding beyond borders, pioneering projects and actively encouraging me to step out of my comfort zone. With their help I can transform the company.
Safe, secure, and sound is what most people seek, but I know comfort can kill vision. Conviction is where vision scales in your heart and is unleashed. I’m thankful to have people behind me who are aligned with me and vice versa. I’m there for them to become all they can be by serving, sharing and seeking more.
The future you want to see tomorrow has a lot to do with the people you have in your life today. I learn from them every day and am ready to share the rewards when they come because they’ve earned it. They’ve taken risks with me and haven’t quit on faith and hope.
Relationships take investment, and the right ones pay dividends.
The greatest investment you can make is time. Relationships require it. The platform you choose matters, and for me, WhatsApp is fast becoming my go-to social network. When people ask for leads, I often say, “Open your phone. It’s a great place to start.”
If you feel overwhelmed, get in a room with a friend, exchange contacts, and help each other out. Networking takes time, but the more people you’re connected with, the greater your chances of enhancing your net worth. The path to purpose is revealed by people. That’s one of the benefits of making purpose a priority: you attract the right kind of people.
The clearer you are about your purpose, the clearer it unfolds through the connections you make. Personally, I know that the U.S. is part of the Cre8ion plan, and although in its infancy, I can see the plan unfolding.
Everything takes time; seeds need regular watering.
Meeting people doesn’t guarantee immediate results. The clues are in conversations, to which we need to pay attention. Learn to become an expert at asking questions. In a new country, gather intelligence and see how things unfold and when you return, you can develop the relationships by investing time, exploring and building as you develop your intelligence. You don’t need all the answers now; just be available.
For me, I’ve discovered that California, as a state, thinks and operates differently to the others. For context, California is as large as the UK and is, in essence, like its own country.
Stepping into the unknown means you won’t have all your questions answered ahead of time.
Pioneers didn’t know exactly where the gold was, but they were prepared to take the risks to find it. And in the middle of Gold Country, you can see how the infrastructure has developed in just a few hundred years.
Tech, film, fashion, food, and wine are just a few things that California is known for, in addition to its sunshine. You may aim for gold but end up opening the door to something else. That’s the beauty of the pioneer’s life, where possibilities are infinite, and new people add depth to a greater purpose.
I firmly believe in building generationally. I may not see everything come to fruition in my lifetime, but I can lay the foundations for a brave new world. Strengthening foundations is part of Moxie’s motto, and I believe I’m doing just that.
If you want to enhance your results, you’ll need to change your approach, even if the principles remain the same. Being in a land with 350 million opportunities can make this happen.
Next week, I’ll share my Lake Tahoe trip (we are going tomorrow) and watching Michael’s son in a real-life “Friday Night Lights” style American Football match. I’m not sure how I’m going to adjust to the darker, rainier climate back home but thankfully Autumn is my favourite season.