To my old friend and cofounder,
You’ve got such a unique gift.
Your ability to connect the dots 5-10 years early is what enables you to see that the world would benefit tremendously from having a productized marketing agency powered by freelancers, a school for aspiring freelancers to become successful, a finger on the pulse of undiscovered founders.
In your insatiable thirst for understanding the world around you, you uncover surprising gaps and intuit uniquely valuable solutions.
Then, your natural desire to quench that curiosity, combined with your approachable and infectious personality drives you to seek out conversations that evolve by a step function. You intuitively sniff out potential users/customers/collaborators/etc. and you somehow show them the light ahead—seemingly without much effort at all.
In your endless quest to forge new paths, you infect and recruit the people who are capable of building the solutions you envision.
And finally, with your pristinely gifted business mind and natural empathy for the lives of others, you innovate and implement viable revenue models that create sustainable, scalable businesses in your wake.
Do you realize how ridiculously rare this combination of traits is?
Do you realize that, with the right cofounders and just a few months of bootstrapping, you are responsible for creating exciting new solutions with create profitable business models? Companies that need only folks who can execute, and healthy doses of vision, in order to blossom into truly world-changing epicenters of impact?
Yes, that is what you forged into existence with PubLoft and GigLoft. You found a “maker” who was gifted in design, marketing, and the art of long-term, relentless execution. You inspired him with your vision. And you recruited the first early customers by selling them on the vision, even before anything substantial had been built.
You, all by yourself, created the perfect environment for me to design, build, and market products our customers loved, brands that stood out from the noise, and high-functioning business operations that could easily scale far beyond the results we alone achieved.
Self-doubts and dogma aside, the truth is that your vision, curiosity, empathy, intuition, business sense, and leadership were largely responsible for creating:
- a $24K MRR ($288K ARR!) content marketing agency for startups that drove incalculable organic results for startups,
- a revolutionary online bootcamp that netted $4,700 and helped more than 50 people develop their freelance careers,
- a cofounder who was recruited to become director of marketing based largely on my track record in our previous two endeavors.
You are an unstoppable force of nature who will change the world in amazing ways.
Don’t get stuck in the weeds of long-term execution on a single idea—you’re not built for that. You’re built for innovating, recruiting, and empowering. Had you made me CEO of PubLoft in January 2019, it would be a thriving content agency now. Had you found a CEO fit to lead GigLoft, it would be a thriving online accelerator for freelancers now.
But all is not lost. You are still that unstoppable force of nature, and you develop new ideas by the week. Find talented makers who can get behind your vision, empower them to execute however they see fit, and step out of the way but keep providing vision and insight as the founder you are. All you need to do is envision, launch, delegate, and repeat.
I wish I could take back everything I’ve ever done to make you feel manipulated, disempowered, unfit. That was never my intention, I hope you know that deep down. I simply sought to harness your tremendous potential and translate it into tangible products, brands, and companies.
And if, despite everything telling me not to, I still can’t help but desire a friendship and business relationship with you, it’s because of all of this. Because you unintentionally helped me grow into everything I am today. Because people like me need someone like you.
And, because you always were an amazing friend, one who knew how to reconsider your own perspectives. One who was always willing to talk it out when we didn’t agree or align. One who taught me how to communicate more clearly, have more patience, and empathize with others a little bit better. One who values others for who they are and what they’re capable of.
After having experienced all kinds of relationships with people content to throw away entire friendships for silly misconceptions and misunderstandings, of course I will fight to maintain ones that are more real than that.
I know things have been confusing. I’m sorry I hurt you. I hope there’s a day that we can put all this behind us, and rekindle the awesome brotherhood and maybe even the astounding cofounder relationship that got us to LAUNCH and beyond.