The world has changed. I spent my childhood growing up in Germany where my dad was serving in the military. I can remember the looming threat of the Cold War which kept every American vigilant for imminent threats from the former Soviet Union.
We knew the enemy at that time – the U.S.S.R. We knew the war front and the mission: Stop communism wherever it threatened freedom.
Then September 11, 2001 changed everything. We were never going to be the same again as a people. As we all watched the events unfolding on that horrible day, something inside us realized that we were entering a new era. It was a brave new world that showed us that size and might of weapons and countries were secondary.
The war on terror had multiple fronts, and our entire war strategy and structure had to change. It was not about the brawn of our capability. It was now about agility, stealth and shrewdness. The enemy set new rules through ideology and guerilla tactics.
Smaller Became The New Big
Our world has changed not only on the defense front, but also business as a whole. We used to go to big companies to get access to the tools for execution. GE, IBM, Ford and the many other industrial age enterprises built large economies of scale. They had shared resources that the general public did not have. Whether it was printing machinery or computing power, knowledge workers at these behemoths had advantage when it came to business execution.
As computing became cheaper and we all become plugged in, connected and mobile, the tools for getting things done became accessible. Now with an internet connection and a cell phone, a person can be in business for yourself or someone else. The costs are extremely low and inconsequential.
I built my own marketing company, AscendWorks, back in 2005 from the enabling technologies of today. If I had to start in 1995, I would have had many more barriers in the way of overhead, infrastructure and distribution channels. Communications were slower. Tools were more expensive. Advertising was the channel for getting your message out.
Instead, the new economy helped me play by new rules. My team is around the world. My customers are around the country. Our systems are virtual, and we are responsive and accessible wherever, whenever.
I have gained personal freedom from the way my business is structured. I have gained happiness from doing meaningful work that makes an impact quickly. I built something that has the recipe hidden within it to help millions of people who can recognize opportunity and go after their own dreams to build something of their own.
This book is meant to help the person who is starting or growing a business. I am hired by companies to help them with strategy and execution in order to make more money. Your business has its own specific nuances and requirements, but the principles for getting going and making it happen can apply to any venture.
Part of the message is to get you thinking and doing something about yourself and the opportunities around you every day. The other part is to provide tangibles which will help you put the pieces together for pursuing your dream.
I hope you won’t waste your opportunities. Get out there and Build Something!