Over the last year, I have become a fan of a little publication out of Singapore produced by the folks at Anonymous. They focus on designers, which is an obsession with me, and take time to go out and ask creatives questions about their life. I have enjoyed the thought provoking questions they come up with as I think they really provide insight to the people they interview. So I thought, hey, why not interview myself and let people see what is going on in my mind. So here you go:
1. Please tell us about yourself and what you do.
I’m a magician. I see what’s invisible to the naked eye and use my intuition to make strategic decisions on how to help our clients. I help manage meaning by taking chaotic noise and translating it to a meaningful signal. I’m a director working on the emergence of harmony. I’m a student, learning everyday and working on my personal growth. And, I’m part of the big picture, where everything is connected and continuously unfolding.
2. When you were growing up, what did you want to be?
A secret service agent or spy like the guys on Man from Uncle. Or Flint. Or James Bond. They all appealed to me.
3. What was your first job and what was it like for you?
Well very first was probably shoveling snow and cutting grass for my elderly neighbors. I think I got a nickel. What was it like? When you’re seven and someone gives you money, it was pretty impressive. I never thought about it before but it was my first facility job!
4. What was the catalyst for starting A+Anthony Corp.?
I noticed that when you wanted to build a new headquarters building, you could get 50 or a hundred companies that wanted to work on it for you. But when you needed someone to fix a broken door knob, well good luck. So I decided to focus on broken door knobs so to speak, and be the best in the world at it.
5. How did you find the resources to make it happen?
I took it very slowly for a very long time, made a little money and let it add up. I never drew a big salary as I knew the business needed it more than me. And in fact, at one point, took a substantial portion of my personal savings and invested in the company at a critical time. I thought to myself, if I don’t have faith in myself, why should anyone else? So I never borrowed money for A+Anthony Corp. until this year for the first time. I am very proud of that.
6. In your opinion, what has gotten you this far?
Having a successful company is a series of things. You need to be a leader, have some vision, know how to run a business, know how to find some key people and then get everyone on the bus, in the right seats, going in the same direction. In summary, it has been a group effort and I am so proud of the people I work with.
7. What was the most difficult lesson you had to learn?
Take a stand on ethics. Don’t cross the line. It will cost you money in the short term, but there’s a lot to be said about karma. I’m a big believer in you get back what you put out.
8. How do you see the relationship between money and creativity?
The less money you have, the more creative you get! I think it’s that philosophy that appeals to our clients. Lots of companies say “How much can we generate from that client?”. We say “How much money can we save that client.” I think our clients prefer our approach. I think anyone would.
9. What is your ideal business model?
It begins with clients that get what we do. They understand we do what we do better than they do, they allow us to advise them, they allow us to execute, and we all benefit from the results. Does is get any better than that?
10. If you were given a million dollars, what would you do with it?