About Inspired Startup
Have you been itching to leave your company for the past five years? Do you have an idea that you’ve been passionate about but too lazy or chicken to get started? Do you have a business now that is struggling to grow? Have you been watching the late night commercials on how to get rich quick and maybe even bought a system or two? Do you lack the confidence or knowledge to take the leap of faith and start your own dream company? Then, you’ve come to the right place! InspiredStartup will help you start and grow your company to as big as you can dream.
My name is Andy Liu and I’m the writer of InspiredStartup. This is not about how to get rich quick nor is it an academic exercise in how to build a company. This site is for people who dream and execute. We’ll talk about how to start a business and how to grow it to the next level. We’ll learn how to do hand-to-hand combat daily to build successful businesses together without the MBA mumbo-jumbo. I want to see you succeed and to share your experiences here. I want to learn from you.
As a kid, I learned the basics of entrepreneurship in my parents basement. As soon as I would learn of guests coming over, I would find stuff around the house and put it up for sale. I think my folks and the guests found it amusing, but I found out it wildly profitable since I never paid a cent and I made a lot of profit, it was fun and I was hooked!
At the age of 15, I started working at Godfather’s pizza. I think that everyone should work at a restaurant at least once in their life – what an eye-opening experience as I learned about the good, bad, and ugly of running a restaurant business through the eyes of a cashier and pizza maker. I think in one summer, I consumed on average a large pizza each day. Those were the good ol’ days of being able to consume without worry of mushrooming…
Due to a variety of personal and family reasons, I started working full-time for AT&T at the age of 16 in the summer and then continued working for a variety of large companies including Boeing, Keane, Active Voice and other places including a failed startup while getting my bachelor’s in Electrical Engineering. I learned quickly that I didn’t enjoy the engineering lifestyle and naively, I thought I learned enough from those experiences to jump into my first “real” startup with investors at the age of 23 while going to school for my MBA. Nothing ever came real easy, but we were able to work hard hours to build a great, profitable company in 5 years and eventually sell the company.
Beyond my professional pursuits, I am just as passionate about using entrepreneurship to solve the problem of extreme poverty (defined as those who make less than $2/day). After traveling and volunteering in developing countries as often as I can, I’ve been moved by our personal responsibility to human dignity and bridging the inequality between the rich and the extreme poor. I’ve partnered with other tech folks to build a technology center for an impoverished community in Central America. We have a teacher and social worker on staff and have graduated several students and committed to a 5-year plan. It’s been a total blast to see real progress and awe-inspiring to see students embrace entrepreneurship in their own pursuits and dreams. I’m looking forward to sharing more inspirational stories here. I also want to hear about your passions and thoughts in this area as I think we can as entrepreneurs change the world.
About Me and Inspired Startup in a Nutshell
I’m a serial entrepreneur and angel investor. I’m also a die-hard never-say-die Seattle sports fan. I’m now running a web company (BuddyTV.com) and sit on 3 boards as well as a non-profit and have invested in 42 companies (including four exits). I feel very fortunate to have a great partner in my businesses and have been extremely lucky that despite my shortcomings, I’ve seen more successes than failures. I could talk for hours with entrepreneurs about new ideas and I get energized hearing about other entrepreneurial successes. We do not exist in a zero-sum world, where someone must fail in order for someone to win, if we can all help each other succeed, we’ll only be better for it! Remember the saying, a rising tide raises all boats. InspiredStartup is here to raise the tide for all entrepreneurs (including wanna-bes!). If I can help you, let me know.
Here’s how to contact me:
inspiredstartup at gmail dot com
Follow me at Twitter – aceliu
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