I've always hated paper resumes. I think it's a really boring way to review someone's skills & experience.
On top of that, they're old school, require the use of a printer, and it's simply just a waste of paper.
So I decided to create a page on this site to serve as an ongoing portfolio of my work experience for anyone who wants to review my credentials. (SBA, bankers, business partners, etc.)
For whatever it's worth in today's world, my degree reads Business Administration with a concentration in Finance & Real Estate and a GPA of 3.4.
3.4 GPA because I cared just enough about my grades at the time to pull all nighters before test day by cramming enough information into my brain only to regurgitate the next morning.
A more accurate depiction of my college experience was 80 hours a week focused on playing football. My days consisted of workouts, film study, position meetings, practice, ice baths, physical therapy, eating, sleeping and the occasional study break.
Here's a shot of Shaquille Barrett (Tampa Bay Bucs LB) and I after beating CU in the 2012 season opener at the Denver Broncos stadium.
Since graduating college in 2014, my professional career has been a mix of entrepreneurial ventures with some brief phases of testing out the corporate world.
After graduating college, my goal was to optimize for experiences (in typical millennial fashion). I spent the first couple summers helping my friend build fence with his small fencing business and took the winters off to ski and fly fish around the state of Colorado. Looking back, I wouldn't trade this time for anything as it allowed me the opportunity to see the state of Colorado & have some fun after 4 years of non stop football.
After the second winter of doing this, I was unbelievably antsy & ready to start a new project going into the spring. I decided to move back home for the spring to build a tiny home in my dad's shop yard.
Over the Winter, I was studying how to successfully run paid digital marketing campaigns and wanted to run an experiment to sell a high ticket item over the internet.
I spent the month of March building the tiny home on a gooseneck trailer and started running ads at the end of the month. My marketing strategy consisted of posting a listing on tinyhouselistings.com and ran paid traffic with Facebook ads to the listing.
Within a week, I had more phone calls than I could count with 6 or 7 hot buyer leads.
I ended up selling the house for a 14k profit to a couple in Louisiana and personally delivered the tiny house on wheels to them at the end of the month.
This was a super fun first project that taught me a lot about building, digital marketing, and selling through the process.
In 2017, I met Bayleigh (now my wife) and figured it was time to get my shit together if I wanted to get married. I took one of my former college teammates up on a job offer at Hewlett Packard Enterprise.
It was a remote role doing software support sales with steady, stable pay and commission bonus.
This role allowed us to move up to the mountains full time as my wife & I both enjoy snowboarding and wanted to live at least one winter in the mountains before thinking about having kids.
The job was good, and I exceeded my quota while I was there (not hard to do in the corporate world) but I still had the entrepreneurial itch.
Working remotely in Winter Park led me to working out of The Perk a couple days a week. The owner, Jayson, and I became friends and decided to start a coworking space. He was seeing tons of remote professionals like myself working out of his coffee shop before (or after) catching some laps at Winter Park Resort.
Jayson and I started a small coworking space because we saw an unmet need in our community. The first goal was to sell enough coworking memberships to cover our $1200 rent payment so we could have a "free office" to work from. I look back on this one and laugh.
Long story short, we filled the space rather quickly and decided to acquire a coworking brand in Denver in 2018.
The owners of the Denver coworking space were living in France and managing the space remotely, so we felt that we could do the same from Winter Park.
After we did the deal we flew to Paris and took a train to southern France for a week of "training" with the previous owners. We spent the mornings learning the ins and outs of the business model and saved the afternoons for exploring and the evenings for experiencing local French cuisine (and wine).
After implementing new software systems & operations into the Denver business, we decided to revamp the Winter Park location in 2019.
We identified a new development in Winter Park for the new coworking location and raised capital for a complete tenant finish build out of an existing shell.
At the same time of developing the new coworking location, Jayson and I also decided to partner on the coffee business and build a new coffee offering alongside the coworking space.
We've always been big fans of the shared concepts like, The Source, in Denver, so we pitched a local Colorado outdoor retailer on a shared retail concept with our coffee shop. Thankfully, the outdoor retailer is foreward thinking & understood the value of shared concepts and ultimately agreed to share a retail space with mutual benefits in mind.
Growing up working in construction, I saw how much money can be saved if one is willing to get their hands dirty on a project.
Not to mention the cost of hiring a GC (going rate is 15% of project cost in today's market.)
Due to the fact that we were early in our careers & working to keep the build out costs as low as possible, we made the decision early on that we would be HEAVILY involved in the construction process — both from the project management aspect along with the actual physical labor.
We gained experience in managing investor relations, construction budgets, draw schedules, material sourcing, sub contractor management, and a deeper understanding of the construction process in general.
We completed both tenant finish build outs in roughly 4 months after the day we poured the concrete floors (May - August). I was proud of this accomplishment as most other GC's were quoting us a 12 month build time.
This process proved to me not only how much money can be saved by being involved in the construction process, but also how much time can be saved.
I don't know why, but I've always loved marketing in general. I think it's because there are so many different ways you can get creative when marketing / selling your product.
One of the first and most obvious ways we marketed the businesses was through the creation of new websites & social media.
But the two strategies I'm most proud of are the paid campaigns we ran & the door to door approach.
As soon as we opened our doors at the coworking space in September, I had a paid Facebook campaign running to a landing page offer on our site.
Most people who get frustrated with paid ads don't have an offer. If you take anything away from my writing in regards to paid ads, hear me out on this one.
Don't spend money on paid ads unless you have a compelling offer for your customers.
My offer was a free week of coworking at the new space.
Because this allowed me to collect contact information (name, email, phone number, job title) to get to know our customers.
As soon as people claimed our offer online, we immediately followed up with a phone call. (extra brownie points if you call within 5 mins)
I can't tell you how many times I've heard, "Wow, you guys are fast!" when I call potential leads.
This is one of the reasons I believe we filled our space so fast — we were relentless with our phone follow ups.
Once I got the customer on the phone, I verbally confirmed their first start day of the free week offer. I also followed up with a calendar invite to their email so they would have it on their calendar.
If they didn't show up to their first day, you can probably guess what we did.
Yep — called them and rescheduled until we got them in the door.
After a couple months of staying committed to this process, we ended up with a full coworking space.
Energy and effort has always been one of my competitive advantages. If it's important to me, I know I can usually win by simply applying consistent energy and effort towards the goal.
Door To Door
In tandem with my online approach, I had hundreds of flyers printed on nice (thicker than normal) paper. I wrote down all of the neighborhoods from Winter Park to Granby that I thought remote working professionals were living or had a second home.
I made it a lead measure goal to deliver one flyer to the porch of every home in each of the neighborhoods I had identified.
Some may think this is an old school approach. And yes, I agree. It's old school because it's harder to track a conversion rate.
But I simply wanted to do EVERYTHING I could to get this business model profitable as soon as possible.
After all, we raised quite a bit of money from an investor for the build outs and I wanted to do everything in my control to get to profitability and pay the money back.
After filling up the Winter Park coworking space at the end of 2019, we were hit with COVID in 2020.
I wrote an article about our decision making framework as small business owners during the pandemic if you're interested in reading further, but ultimately we only had two decisions.
In short, we decided to "get creative and make it work" by answering the question, "how can we create new revenue streams?"
We built out an online coffee subscription model, built a customer pick up system with no-code, and invested in a zero emission roaster to add wholesale to our business model.
We made the decision to invest in a zero emission roaster, because it made financial sense to do so for the amount of money we were spending on specialty coffee beans for our retail cafe.
Essentially, we could finance the roaster, purchase green coffee beans from a supplier, and come out less expensive than what we were paying on an annual basis to another specialty roaster.
On top of this, the only coffee roaster in the Winter Park area was moving out of state so we knew we could scoop up some wholesale accounts as well.
Since implementing roasting, we have leaned into the wholesale side of the business as we're able to achieve 65-70% gross margins by selling our beans to other local businesses.
Along with building the wholesale side of the business, I have been reading books written by fractional CFO's to better understand our P&L's and Balance Sheets as they relate to strategic decisions.
At the end of 2021, we engaged in conversation with a strategic buyer for the Denver coworking space. This buyer had a much larger business plan & vision for the space and ultimately we decided it made sense to sell as we felt that he was the perfect buyer to continue the Green Spaces vision.
This was a fun process and we learned a lot about the process of selling a business.
After selling the Denver business, I've spent my time designing a mountain home in Winter Park, searching for new businesses to buy, working with the SBA on buying a commercial building, and managing the build of a duplex in Texas.
I'm always open to viewing new business opportunities — i'm highly interested in real estate development & service based businesses for my next venture.
Feel free to email me if you'd like to connect on business opportunities.
If you'd like to view the business websites on past / current projects you can click on the links below for more info.