Shortly after Marc Leder and I finished college where we had both studied business, I opted to look for a career whilst he began to put together the foundation of his fintech startup. This was an exciting time for both of us and we had no doubt that we were both going to be a success in our lives. Marc moved very quickly indeed, he secured a vast amount of funding and before long he had the foundations of a real business. Within just a year Marc had got his business off the ground and his software was something that everyone was talking about. It was after the third year in business that things went wrong for Marc, a blow which could have halted his entire career.
Marc had hired an accountant who had worked with a family member of his before, a smart move as trust is a big issue when it comes to finance. Unfortunately however it soon became apparent that this accountant was doing the dirty on Marc, and it quickly spiraled out of control. At the beginning of the fourth year Marc was forced to close the business and sell off its assets to pay the investors back, the accountant had left him high and dry. There was a little more detail to how things got so bad, and of course Marc’s part in this in terms of not realizing, but those details are no longer necessary.
Marc struggled for months after the business closed, he’d had to sell his property and he even lived with me for a couple off months. During this time Marc would do bits and pieces of work for people and he had to swallow his pride and take on a day job, knowing that he should have been at the top of the company ladder, and not just another rung. This was a tough time for Marc and he changed drastically for at least a year.
I can remember meeting with Marc for a coffee and he had changed for the better, he had a little bit of zip about him and some optimism that I hadn’t seen for a while. He told me that he had been working hard and he knew how to get back in the business game. Marc had basically spent over a month working out what went wrong with his business, in detail, and how he could avoid it in the future. The next month Marc started his own drop shipping company, a small affair at first, and I helped him to get himself off the ground, this time the only money came from his own pocket, and a small bank loan. Within 6 months the business was growing faster than he could ever have dreamed and by the end of year one he had eclipsed what he did with his previous business.
Marc is now a millionaire thanks to this business, but also thanks to his resilience, his tenacity and his refusal to accept failure. Things go wrong, businesses fail and people make mistakes, those are destined to be successful will get back in the game and go again, just as Marc did.