As some of you know, I went through a brief “wilderness period” late last year after I unsuccessfully attempted to buy back the company I founded in this industry 13 years ago. During that time, as I was laying the groundwork for Fountainhead, I started a daily morning (and sometimes even evening) routine of briskly walking 4 to 6 miles while listening to podcasts or audio-books on Audible. I’ve continued this to this day, but for a month-long period this summer when I couldn’t seem to kick some virus. In fact, I’m happy to report that I just cleared slightly over 40 miles last week (in only 6 days) – it was a bit of a stressful week, as you might imagine. 😉
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I’ve always been one of those “windshield time” audio-book listeners… I think someone once called it “Highway University.” Lately, some of what I’ve listened to includes: the Elon Musk biography by Ashlee Vance; Bold by Peter Diamandis; The Entrepreneur Rollercoaster by Dean Hardy; Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl (again); and now Becoming Steve Jobs by Rick Tetzeli and Brent Schlender. My favorite podcasts, for those interested, are Men In Blazers (for soccer fans) and my buddy Tim’s, The Tim Ferriss Show.
I had previously read Walter Isaacson’s biography on Steve Jobs a few years ago and was recently reminded (through listening to Becoming Steve Jobs) of what I consider the greatest TV ad of all-time. No, not Apple’s “1984” one that aired just once during a Super Bowl. I mean the “Think Different” one from the late 1990’s. What I had forgotten about it was that Steve also narrated a version — though it wasn’t originally broadcast. He had used actor, Richard Dreyfus, to narrate the one which aired.
As we approach Labor Day and the 4th anniversary of Steve’s passing… and as we all strive to labor more purposefully, I thought I’d share Steve’s version here as something of a tribute to one of the greatest minds (and characters) in modern business history. But it should also serve as some inspiration…
At Fountainhead, we’re deeply honored to work daily with some of those “crazy ones,” “misfits,” “rebels,” and “troublemakers“… otherwise known as “entrepreneurs” and “small business owners.” Every entrepreneur we know has “seen things differently” and gone against plenty of well-meaning and well-intentioned folks to do what they feel is right in their bones. You can’t have a deep appreciation for the status quo if you’re trying to change it.
We often think of ourselves in these terms as well and certainly know we’re as much on the “entrepreneurial journey” as our prospective clients are. No one ever said all bankers NEED to be stuffy and sterile. 😉 There IS such a thing as an “entrepreneurial commercial lender.”
Laboring just for compensation isn’t terribly satisfying, as I’m sure you agree. I truly believe we all must pursue meaning in our efforts. Be it the constant pursuit of excellence or making a meaningful impact on another’s life or helping another achieve their dreams and goals or a murid of other ways. The human condition is about striving. Striving for better, striving for more, striving for meaning, striving for connection, striving to change the status quo.
I’ve always tried to encourage my employees to see our daily work in this way. What we do has a higher-purpose than merely financing a building… we create wealth for America’s entrepreneurs; wealth that often outlasts a generation. And we do it in the smartest way possible – a way frequently overlooked by so many “trusted” advisors to owners of small and midsized businesses. A way that some think of as “crazy” or too “different” from the status quo… usually because they haven’t taken the time to truly learn about it.
May you have a wonderful, safe and relaxing Labor Day Weekend. Think about the Apple clip above… the world needs more renegades, rules-breakers, and geniuses… more entrepreneurs. “Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.”
P.S. Reach out to us when someone you know or your monthly rent payment needs turning into a wealth-creating commercial mortgage payment. We’re ready and willing to help!