May 3, 2022

Nick Saltarelli (Mid-Day Squares) - How he built a passionate audience, why his family decided to found a chocolate company, and their approach to content

Nick Saltarelli (Mid-Day Squares) - How he built a passionate audience, why his family decided to found a chocolate company, and their approach to content

Our guest today is Nick Saltarelli one of the Co-founders of Mid-Day Squares. Mid-Day Squares is the first functional chocolate bar. Nick founded the company with his wife, Leslie and brother-in-law Jake. We discuss how and why his family wanted to start a chocolate company, why they decided to vertically integrate instead of outsourcing manufacturing, their combination of marrying content with a CPG and much more. Without further ado, here’s Nick.

And there you have it. I hope you all enjoyed Nick’s story of how and why he started Mid-Day Squares.

  1. Did you always want to know you wanted to be an entrepreneur?
  2. What were some of the pivotal moments in your life that helped shaped you personally and professionally, how you wanted to work with people?
  3. Why did you focus on CPG?
  4. How did you meet Lez?
  5. How did you land on chocolate?
  6. Why did you decide to share everything publicly?
  7. How did Jake come on board?
  8. Is it a tough dynamic working with your wife and your brother-in-law?
  9. What was your process for raising capital?
  10. How did you think about brand and branding?
  11. Why did you decide to create your own manufacturing plant vs. outsourcing manufacturing?
  12. How do you think about storytelling and building a passionate audience?
Transcript
WEBVTT 1 00:00:12.439 --> 00:00:17.039 Hello and welcome to the consumer VC. I am your host, Michael but 2 00:00:17.120 --> 00:00:20.920 and on this show we talked about the world of venture capital and innovation in 3 00:00:21.000 --> 00:00:25.480 both consumer technology and consumer products. If you're enjoying this content, you could 4 00:00:25.480 --> 00:00:30.440 subscribe to my newsletter, the consumer VC DOT sub stackcom, to get each 5 00:00:30.519 --> 00:00:35.240 new episode and more consumer news delivered straight to your inbox. Our guest today 6 00:00:35.320 --> 00:00:39.840 is Nick Saltarelli, one of the CO founders at midday squares. Midday squares 7 00:00:40.000 --> 00:00:44.039 is the first functional chocolate bar. Nick found of the company with his wife, 8 00:00:44.119 --> 00:00:47.600 Leslie, and Bloodtherin Law, Jake. We discuss how and why his 9 00:00:47.640 --> 00:00:52.719 family wanted to start a chocolate company, why they decided to vertically integrate instead 10 00:00:52.759 --> 00:00:59.280 of outsourcing manufacturing, and their combination of marrying content with CPG and much, 11 00:00:59.359 --> 00:01:07.200 much more. Without further ADO, here's Nick, Nick, thank you so 12 00:01:07.359 --> 00:01:11.640 much for joining me here. Man, how are you? Let's go, 13 00:01:11.079 --> 00:01:15.040 man. I'm good. I'm good. You know, I think the reality 14 00:01:15.200 --> 00:01:18.519 is of an entrepreneur. Like I said, you got to be able to 15 00:01:18.519 --> 00:01:23.159 switch emotion. So, like five minutes before this conversation I was being just 16 00:01:23.239 --> 00:01:26.400 here with a lot of worry of things that are happening in the business and 17 00:01:26.439 --> 00:01:30.719 when you get hit with that, that energy will if you feel worried, 18 00:01:30.799 --> 00:01:34.120 and then you got to turn it off and then you're going on a podcast 19 00:01:34.120 --> 00:01:37.400 and you got to switch your mindset. That's the beauty of being an entrepreneur, 20 00:01:37.480 --> 00:01:40.000 though. You gotta just like you got to be able to handle this 21 00:01:40.079 --> 00:01:42.680 shit. So that's how I'm doing, man, Dad. Oh No, 22 00:01:42.719 --> 00:01:45.840 I appreciate that and I appreciate you. You being so honest. Just when 23 00:01:45.879 --> 00:01:49.000 like Shit just like comes at you at like all sorts of different angles. 24 00:01:49.200 --> 00:01:53.560 Is there any like advice you have for entrepreneurs when you know, because obviously 25 00:01:53.079 --> 00:01:59.200 you're building something, stuffs crashes right, things don't go according to plan, 26 00:01:59.439 --> 00:02:04.439 like how do you nothing goes accorded plan exactly exactly. There maybe is no 27 00:02:04.560 --> 00:02:08.000 plan. How do you personally just resolve that or, you know, been 28 00:02:08.039 --> 00:02:13.000 able to like function normally? That makes sense. No, I actually I'm 29 00:02:13.039 --> 00:02:16.560 really pumped that you asked that specific way, because this is not my first 30 00:02:16.599 --> 00:02:21.479 go at entrepreneurship, so I have learned a lot of things in terms of 31 00:02:21.479 --> 00:02:25.759 how to deal with this specific thing and how I deal with this specifically, 32 00:02:27.400 --> 00:02:32.639 is this mindset, philosophy of not giving a fuck about it in terms of 33 00:02:34.159 --> 00:02:38.639 coming to a piece of really being okay with midday square smashing into a wall, 34 00:02:38.680 --> 00:02:44.800 like I'm at a very good place with things completely falling apart and ending 35 00:02:44.879 --> 00:02:49.960 in the sense that I know that I could always provide for myself and I 36 00:02:50.080 --> 00:02:53.759 really strong way, and so I'll never be on the streets type thing. 37 00:02:53.840 --> 00:02:58.360 So that mentality allows me to be fearless and then it also allows me to 38 00:02:58.360 --> 00:03:01.360 emotionally detach from it. This wears because ultimately I give him my all and 39 00:03:01.439 --> 00:03:06.439 what will be will be, and that piece is something that I found has 40 00:03:06.479 --> 00:03:09.240 allowed me to really flow with this, because at the end of the day, 41 00:03:09.400 --> 00:03:13.199 it's a shit show from the beginning to the end. I don't give 42 00:03:13.240 --> 00:03:15.639 a fuck who you are, what you say, it's just always a shit 43 00:03:15.719 --> 00:03:22.080 show and if you just become overtaken by it, obsessed by it, runs 44 00:03:22.120 --> 00:03:25.159 your life and you have to remember that you only have one life to live 45 00:03:25.159 --> 00:03:29.680 and you know, my dad dying when I was ten really like just gave 46 00:03:29.719 --> 00:03:34.800 me that perspective. And so the answer, my advice is is you guys 47 00:03:34.840 --> 00:03:38.879 have to be really okay with not caring about Your Business, well caring about 48 00:03:38.919 --> 00:03:44.039 your business, and so that means you have to be okay with it dying. 49 00:03:44.039 --> 00:03:46.199 Wow, that's really powerful stuff right there and I appreciate it that, 50 00:03:46.199 --> 00:03:50.280 that you know be really honest and that you know it's always a Shit Shul 51 00:03:50.319 --> 00:03:53.560 to get there, and it seems like to just maybe this is what I'm 52 00:03:53.639 --> 00:03:57.599 kind of getting maybe from your energy, is that it's a shit show, 53 00:03:57.599 --> 00:04:00.800 but there's always a way. But that way it's never how you intended to 54 00:04:00.840 --> 00:04:03.879 get there, but there's always a way to get there, if that makes 55 00:04:03.960 --> 00:04:09.000 sense exactly. And midday squares does not define me. I am not Nick 56 00:04:09.039 --> 00:04:12.719 Salter relly midday squares, although people would like to think that. But I've 57 00:04:12.919 --> 00:04:15.000 put in a lot of work internally to get to a point where I'm just 58 00:04:15.120 --> 00:04:18.839 nick and I just happened to be on a Gig called midday squares right now, 59 00:04:18.920 --> 00:04:23.839 and that Gig requires me to put my best foot forward. And so 60 00:04:23.959 --> 00:04:27.639 at the end of the day, when it's still burning and it's nine o'clock, 61 00:04:27.800 --> 00:04:30.319 I actually am there. I smoke, could do but my house, 62 00:04:30.600 --> 00:04:34.519 watch them television and I go to sleep and I don't really give a shit 63 00:04:34.560 --> 00:04:38.399 if the whole place burns down because I've given him my all like, what 64 00:04:38.480 --> 00:04:42.040 more do you want during that day? I put in my ten hours. 65 00:04:42.079 --> 00:04:45.720 What may people have part that journey that you had to take in order to 66 00:04:45.759 --> 00:04:49.399 get that separation from you and your business and you not being defined by the 67 00:04:49.399 --> 00:04:54.600 success or failure of your business per se? The answer to that for me 68 00:04:54.759 --> 00:04:58.959 is I really came in. My philosophy that I've been preaching a lot, 69 00:04:58.959 --> 00:05:02.480 even when I was doing like when I'm doing college gigs or podcast and stuff 70 00:05:02.519 --> 00:05:08.040 like that, is is in order to do something that we're trying to do 71 00:05:08.079 --> 00:05:13.319 at midday squares, I believe it requires a full integration of your life. 72 00:05:13.399 --> 00:05:17.120 And so my life is midday squares, and I know it's counterintuitive to what 73 00:05:17.160 --> 00:05:21.399 I just said, but it is not me as a person. So my 74 00:05:21.439 --> 00:05:26.839 life, my wife, we wake up every day and it's not like we 75 00:05:26.879 --> 00:05:30.040 go to work or that. It's just the whole thing is integrated. The 76 00:05:30.120 --> 00:05:36.040 content is integrated and ultimately, my piece with the whole thing is this is 77 00:05:36.079 --> 00:05:41.199 our journey. I know what it takes to become a top ten brand, 78 00:05:41.240 --> 00:05:44.560 and so this is what the workloads going to be. You have to be 79 00:05:44.600 --> 00:05:47.199 on camera all the time, you have to be communicating to your audience at 80 00:05:47.199 --> 00:05:51.079 the level we're trying to meet communicate with your audience, and that poses no 81 00:05:51.199 --> 00:05:55.959 guarantee that, I've been said, if I'm committed to this journey and going 82 00:05:55.959 --> 00:06:00.040 back to what you said, Mike, Putting in my everyday work so I 83 00:06:00.040 --> 00:06:02.240 could go to sleep and night content. Part of that is the content. 84 00:06:02.279 --> 00:06:05.279 I know I'm giving a hundred and ten. I know we are giving a 85 00:06:05.399 --> 00:06:10.199 hundred and ten in order to give this thing the best possible shot at success, 86 00:06:10.240 --> 00:06:15.040 and so that's how I deal with all that content and being constantly on. 87 00:06:15.120 --> 00:06:17.319 It's like almost I'm in a meditative state. Well, we're doing it. 88 00:06:17.399 --> 00:06:19.600 You don't get me wrong, I have my ups and downs, but 89 00:06:19.600 --> 00:06:25.000 I try to be in the state of where I am not looking to have 90 00:06:25.279 --> 00:06:29.160 different experiences in my life outside of midday squares. They all have to just 91 00:06:29.199 --> 00:06:30.959 be part of it and make sense. And I'd imagine it's, I mean, 92 00:06:31.000 --> 00:06:34.839 nothing's, of course, easy, but I'd imagine it might be somewhat 93 00:06:34.839 --> 00:06:39.759 easy because you obviously share online like. I mean all of you share, 94 00:06:39.800 --> 00:06:43.279 like your ups and downs in the company and really take us through like at 95 00:06:43.319 --> 00:06:46.720 all, and I'd imagine that if you were some you know, like aspirational 96 00:06:46.839 --> 00:06:49.480 brand. Right, we're like you're only on camera when like the things and 97 00:06:49.839 --> 00:06:55.600 times are good. Then it's actually much harder to like separate yourself from the 98 00:06:55.600 --> 00:07:00.519 business. But the fact that, like, you're obviously you really are humanizing, 99 00:07:00.519 --> 00:07:04.759 you know, entrepreneurship overall, you your wife, your brotherin logic that 100 00:07:04.920 --> 00:07:09.600 I think that, even though it's maybe a lot more intense, because maybe 101 00:07:09.680 --> 00:07:13.759 it's a bit more because you see like the ups and downs, you see 102 00:07:13.800 --> 00:07:16.199 it all, but at the same time you can walk away saying like that's 103 00:07:16.279 --> 00:07:21.240 me right, and not just this like some like abstract version or online, 104 00:07:21.279 --> 00:07:25.399 instagramed cookie cutter kind of face of you. Right. I'm going to plug 105 00:07:25.399 --> 00:07:28.800 our podcast, midday squares uncensored. If you don't listen, please listen. 106 00:07:29.720 --> 00:07:32.560 We it's a really around table between Jake Les and I and and it's not 107 00:07:32.720 --> 00:07:39.839 US interviewing guests, it's US really distilling at a table together about our journey. 108 00:07:39.839 --> 00:07:42.759 And one of the parts I said in one of the the shows, 109 00:07:42.759 --> 00:07:45.560 I can't remember, which is it's actually way easier. I don't have to 110 00:07:45.560 --> 00:07:47.639 live a double life. The number one thing I find people say when they 111 00:07:47.720 --> 00:07:50.879 meet any of us is like, Oh, you're actually exactly. Like, 112 00:07:51.040 --> 00:07:56.399 yeah, that's the point is it's supposed to be the exact same person. 113 00:07:56.680 --> 00:07:59.639 Yeah, it's not supposed to be two different people, and it gives you 114 00:07:59.639 --> 00:08:01.360 a lot of peace because then you don't have to go through life like tip 115 00:08:01.360 --> 00:08:07.160 of toeing around these these identities you've created. It's a really good point and 116 00:08:07.199 --> 00:08:11.319 it's obviously like great to see that transparency. Obviously that like the person you 117 00:08:11.360 --> 00:08:15.439 see on instagram or Linkedin or twitters like the exact same person that you're getting 118 00:08:15.519 --> 00:08:18.079 like in in real life. Kee. That's like our motto. I've meant 119 00:08:18.120 --> 00:08:22.360 to squared. The product has to be consistent, the team has to be 120 00:08:22.360 --> 00:08:26.680 consistent. We have to be consistent because that creates long term loyalty. Why 121 00:08:26.680 --> 00:08:30.360 did you want to be an entrepren maybe? What were it? There all 122 00:08:30.399 --> 00:08:35.000 people that you were inspired by that really led you down like this like path 123 00:08:35.120 --> 00:08:37.679 of, you know, being your own boss and and really want to be 124 00:08:37.720 --> 00:08:41.360 an entrepreneur yourself. Originally it was money. It was just that seemed like 125 00:08:41.399 --> 00:08:46.679 the best use of my time for Uri Right. It just it was completely 126 00:08:46.799 --> 00:08:52.519 driven by dollars in my late teenagers that I got me initially. I think 127 00:08:52.519 --> 00:08:56.360 that's what drives everybody into it, especially in your teenage years. Like I 128 00:08:56.360 --> 00:08:58.360 went and worked, right, I had jobs, right. I remember my 129 00:08:58.519 --> 00:09:05.279 like first job was just minimum wage and then I progress into commission based work 130 00:09:05.279 --> 00:09:09.960 for Canadian tire. was working in Canada, and then I realized commission based 131 00:09:09.960 --> 00:09:13.279 burst work made me more Roi than hour early work, and then that just 132 00:09:13.480 --> 00:09:18.240 continued looping up that, oh, this is probably the best leverage of my 133 00:09:18.279 --> 00:09:24.120 time is being an entrepreneur. And then that transformed into it being seen as 134 00:09:24.120 --> 00:09:26.360 a sport. I was a competitive athlete my whole life and when that came 135 00:09:26.399 --> 00:09:30.519 to an end, like you know, I spent let's Ay, pre twenty 136 00:09:30.639 --> 00:09:33.360 trying to be, you know, trying to make the NHL, and so 137 00:09:33.480 --> 00:09:37.559 when that journey ended, I needed a new journey. I do really well 138 00:09:37.919 --> 00:09:45.480 in environments where stats are reported, and so business is like really that. 139 00:09:45.559 --> 00:09:48.440 If you're trying to play at the highest level, it's you know, you 140 00:09:48.440 --> 00:09:50.679 can get to public reporting, you can get to all sorts of stuff, 141 00:09:50.720 --> 00:09:54.720 and so it became kind of like a board game. From me, entrepreneurship 142 00:09:54.840 --> 00:10:01.600 something that really allowed me to play with the idea of life. My here's 143 00:10:01.720 --> 00:10:03.639 my if you ask, if you want to know my views on life. 144 00:10:03.879 --> 00:10:09.000 It's really simple. Be stimulated until you die and try to do more good 145 00:10:09.000 --> 00:10:13.639 than bad during that stimulation on your time and your planet. And so when 146 00:10:13.679 --> 00:10:16.200 you look at it through that Lens, it becomes a lot simpler, for 147 00:10:16.240 --> 00:10:20.440 me at least. I can't speak for everybody else. And so what makes 148 00:10:20.480 --> 00:10:26.200 me stimulated to solving problems, really important problems like what Elan's doing a tesla, 149 00:10:26.320 --> 00:10:31.919 or problems could be simply bringing, for word, brands at scale, 150 00:10:31.919 --> 00:10:37.320 which is what we're working on here, and then being stimulated always comes at 151 00:10:37.360 --> 00:10:39.759 counterculture. For me, I love being against the grain. I always have. 152 00:10:39.799 --> 00:10:46.679 I've always just been so attracted to thinking about what a completely opposite approach 153 00:10:46.679 --> 00:10:50.519 could look like in anything. So when people say, like what's the main 154 00:10:50.519 --> 00:10:52.879 problem you're trying to solve? The Mid Day squares, I don't think it's 155 00:10:52.000 --> 00:10:56.840 necessarily an operational problem. I think those have been solved. I think what 156 00:10:56.879 --> 00:11:03.279 we're trying to solve is introducing an idea to North America of what it means 157 00:11:03.399 --> 00:11:09.799 to be a brand that scales to a mature billion dollar enterprise and how you 158 00:11:09.799 --> 00:11:13.679 conduct yourself in the world and who you have to be and what you have 159 00:11:13.759 --> 00:11:16.360 to say and how you have to dress and how you have to act and 160 00:11:16.440 --> 00:11:18.320 how you have to show up, and the only way to do that is 161 00:11:18.360 --> 00:11:22.399 to do it. That's where the drive comes from, right is like I 162 00:11:22.399 --> 00:11:26.600 we won't be able to break the glass ceiling unless we actually get to the 163 00:11:26.639 --> 00:11:28.080 top, and that's where people always like, why are you so obsessed with 164 00:11:28.120 --> 00:11:31.799 the top? I don't know. It's not even about the top. It's 165 00:11:31.919 --> 00:11:37.799 just like to prove to North America that you could just be unapologetically yourself. 166 00:11:37.799 --> 00:11:41.039 For nobody to be able to throw any rocks at that, it needs to 167 00:11:41.080 --> 00:11:43.759 be bulletproof, and the only way for it to be bulletproof is to be 168 00:11:43.799 --> 00:11:50.639 a ten billion dollar enterprise where you can not dispute the facts. When you 169 00:11:50.639 --> 00:11:54.080 think about solving problems, it seems like maybe have a grit to grind with 170 00:11:54.120 --> 00:11:58.399 like big CPG. What's your attraction maybe to try to distrap CPG or just 171 00:11:58.440 --> 00:12:03.120 to work in CPG, and also, how do you think about the world 172 00:12:03.120 --> 00:12:07.000 of CPG in terms of like what actually is wrong with it? This is 173 00:12:07.159 --> 00:12:11.240 a two prompt question, so I'm going to give you two steps and then 174 00:12:11.240 --> 00:12:15.840 we're going to tie the two steps together. So step one. I realize 175 00:12:15.919 --> 00:12:20.240 earlier why CPG. I was trying to fish in a lot of different ponds 176 00:12:20.279 --> 00:12:24.320 as an entrepreneur and I kept on comparing myself to two events that were happening 177 00:12:24.360 --> 00:12:28.679 in CPG. So there was like some of my businesses were really hard to 178 00:12:28.679 --> 00:12:31.480 fund raise money on or get money on, and I'll always be like, 179 00:12:31.519 --> 00:12:35.440 well, what's going on in CPG? Why is it so like easy to 180 00:12:35.440 --> 00:12:37.759 do it there? But what's an example? Do you have, like an 181 00:12:37.759 --> 00:12:41.240 example of like of like one that was like toughs like fundraise on. Yeah, 182 00:12:41.399 --> 00:12:48.440 Les and eyes, Fashion Business completely just not the same ecosystem whatsoever. 183 00:12:48.480 --> 00:12:52.720 And then I was listening to trilie munger and warm Buffett and and I had 184 00:12:52.720 --> 00:12:56.679 an epiphany from them and Charlie was just like, Hey, it's pretty simple. 185 00:12:56.679 --> 00:13:00.960 People overthink everything. The best thing to do when fishing in a pond 186 00:13:01.039 --> 00:13:03.039 with less fish is to usually just pack it up and go find a new 187 00:13:03.039 --> 00:13:07.039 pawn with a lot of fish to and what that takeaway was for me was, 188 00:13:07.200 --> 00:13:11.360 oh, I get it. If you go play in pawns that have 189 00:13:11.440 --> 00:13:16.279 thriving ecosystems, then you, as the entrepreneur, job is to just find 190 00:13:16.320 --> 00:13:22.080 penetration and there's this whole ecosystem around you to support growth and vision and all 191 00:13:22.120 --> 00:13:24.720 that. And so that really change the philosophy of where we were going to 192 00:13:24.720 --> 00:13:28.799 try to start businesses, because now it was about starting businesses and ecosystems that 193 00:13:30.000 --> 00:13:35.639 a thriving investors, thriving startup communities, just thriving growth communities. And it 194 00:13:35.720 --> 00:13:39.360 was true. That post true once we got into CPG. Is like actually 195 00:13:39.440 --> 00:13:45.080 very simple to fundraise if you had a great product, and we're bringing for 196 00:13:45.240 --> 00:13:48.279 true innovasion. Like the system rewards you if you do those two things. 197 00:13:48.279 --> 00:13:52.960 Where the beef comes from and CPG, and it's not even real beef is 198 00:13:54.200 --> 00:14:01.080 I have this unique perspective of coming from software, and in software everybody champion 199 00:14:01.440 --> 00:14:05.720 the idea of founders going to distance. Like there's a reason if you take 200 00:14:05.879 --> 00:14:09.320 all the publicly traded companies and split them out by category, when you look 201 00:14:09.360 --> 00:14:13.600 at publicly traded CPG companies, I think there's like less than don't quote me 202 00:14:13.600 --> 00:14:18.759 on this, but like less than two percent are let still led by founders. 203 00:14:18.799 --> 00:14:22.720 The rest are conglomerates that have listed that have just gone a ninety years. 204 00:14:22.720 --> 00:14:26.440 When you go do that in tech the outcomes actually very different. Like 205 00:14:26.480 --> 00:14:31.879 a large percentage of scale tech businesses are still led by founders, and my 206 00:14:31.960 --> 00:14:35.840 beef is like text. Had All this excitement for twenty years and I think 207 00:14:35.879 --> 00:14:39.240 people are excited about tech because it's led by founder still and I think they're 208 00:14:39.279 --> 00:14:45.240 confused as to what is exciting about the category. Is that you're still seeing 209 00:14:45.240 --> 00:14:50.240 the trailblazers now. trailblaze. What billions of dollars of backings and companies that 210 00:14:50.279 --> 00:14:54.440 are printing cash. What happens if we do that in CPG? And why 211 00:14:54.480 --> 00:14:58.240 do people keep on selling their companies once they get to the point where they're 212 00:14:58.279 --> 00:15:01.799 about to reach scale? Like, why does that keep happening? And that 213 00:15:03.159 --> 00:15:07.000 is where the interest of counterculture comes back back to the beginning of this conversation. 214 00:15:07.720 --> 00:15:13.240 I think we're obsessed not with dethroning CPG companies, because they're doing a 215 00:15:13.240 --> 00:15:16.559 great job and conglomerates are great and all that. That's not the problem. 216 00:15:16.559 --> 00:15:20.039 We're obsessed with. What do you do? You Watch game of thrones. 217 00:15:20.120 --> 00:15:24.200 Yeah, okay, what's west of West Rows? That's what we're obsessed with. 218 00:15:24.840 --> 00:15:28.240 is at the end when she's going, I need to know what happens 219 00:15:28.279 --> 00:15:31.840 when you get to three hundred million dollars of revenue and you say no, 220 00:15:33.039 --> 00:15:35.720 fuck this, we are not selling, we are going to go and just 221 00:15:35.759 --> 00:15:39.240 continue. What happens, though? That's of it's amazing because I mean, 222 00:15:39.279 --> 00:15:43.559 as you say, like when it comes to exits and looking at exits for 223 00:15:43.000 --> 00:15:48.000 CPG, it usually, as you say, it's like an Ma transaction, 224 00:15:48.080 --> 00:15:52.240 right, and it's always like big CBG that kind of swallows up these companies. 225 00:15:52.360 --> 00:15:54.960 That's usually I mean it's not the end of the company, like the 226 00:15:54.960 --> 00:15:58.679 the brand still survives, but, as you say, like the founder, 227 00:15:58.720 --> 00:16:03.080 than probably gets whizzled out as part of the package for like a year two 228 00:16:03.399 --> 00:16:07.440 and then they're done and then you don't really have that the creative soul maybe 229 00:16:07.440 --> 00:16:10.840 gets like lost a little bit. Let's say you and I are both starting 230 00:16:10.919 --> 00:16:14.240 the exact same company the exact same time. I have a twenty five year 231 00:16:14.240 --> 00:16:17.000 outlook, you have a five year outlook. We're going to make entirely different 232 00:16:17.000 --> 00:16:21.159 decisions, and that's the interesting piece to this whole thing. What happens to 233 00:16:21.200 --> 00:16:25.320 the companies that take twenty five year outlooks are do we have an inherit competitive 234 00:16:25.320 --> 00:16:30.200 advantage built in simply because of our patients and the decision making on would middy 235 00:16:30.279 --> 00:16:34.960 squares have built a manufacturing plant had we had to done everything we need to 236 00:16:34.960 --> 00:16:37.480 do in five years? I don't know if we make that decision. I'm 237 00:16:37.559 --> 00:16:44.799 kind of curious how do you present midday squares as an investment opportunity, since 238 00:16:44.799 --> 00:16:48.279 investors as well, you know, are looking for VC's. Are Looking for 239 00:16:48.360 --> 00:16:52.120 like a seven year time horizon. You're thinking about it, you know, 240 00:16:52.159 --> 00:16:55.320 it seems like a lot more long term and all lots to kind of get 241 00:16:55.360 --> 00:16:59.519 into that as well about how you think about maybe long term thinking, but 242 00:16:59.840 --> 00:17:03.120 how do you think about like what makes me a good partner for you, 243 00:17:03.159 --> 00:17:07.480 and how do you maybe present mid day squares like an actual opportunity to invest 244 00:17:07.519 --> 00:17:11.440 in? So the way I present mid day squares is an opportunity is it's 245 00:17:11.519 --> 00:17:17.200 really a diversified peace to most portfolios. Is is like Hey, what happens 246 00:17:17.200 --> 00:17:19.279 if you bet on a company that has a twenty five year outlook like let 247 00:17:19.480 --> 00:17:25.319 like, let's start there right you already have an unaverage path that we're designed 248 00:17:25.359 --> 00:17:27.359 to take. So that's really important. If you think about in order to 249 00:17:27.359 --> 00:17:32.079 have an unaverage outcome, you have to have an average inputs. Well, 250 00:17:32.079 --> 00:17:34.559 all the line items that Mad Day squares is choosing to do is is pretty 251 00:17:34.640 --> 00:17:40.200 much counterculture in terms of the typical CPG playbook, just in how you develop 252 00:17:40.240 --> 00:17:44.200 a product a company to sell to another company. Then two is it's not 253 00:17:44.240 --> 00:17:48.599 that we're not providing liquidity. We use when we sit the market in Canada. 254 00:17:48.759 --> 00:17:52.519 The public market in Canada is very different. So, like the TSX, 255 00:17:52.599 --> 00:17:56.039 is a really big public entity, sorry, a public exchange. The 256 00:17:56.160 --> 00:18:00.079 Toronto stock could change and that's got some really interesting stuff. So you have 257 00:18:00.119 --> 00:18:07.240 like six trillion dollars, let's say, of money trying to transact in Canada 258 00:18:07.240 --> 00:18:11.720 through let's say government penching funds, you name all this stuff, and of 259 00:18:11.799 --> 00:18:17.240 that a percentage wants to go into Canadian dollars on the Toronto stocking change. 260 00:18:17.279 --> 00:18:22.920 So there's actually a massive opportunity for my American colleagues and Canadian colleagues to build 261 00:18:22.960 --> 00:18:27.799 these businesses in Canada, because there's there's this thing that becomes it's called export 262 00:18:27.839 --> 00:18:33.440 deficit. The second you are Canadian entity that is driving most of your revenue 263 00:18:33.559 --> 00:18:37.440 from south of the border, ie the US, or outside of Canada, 264 00:18:37.559 --> 00:18:44.000 you become a very, very interesting company to the Canadian public markets because you 265 00:18:44.079 --> 00:18:48.519 are able to transact them the Toronto socket change in Canadian dollars. Being able 266 00:18:48.559 --> 00:18:53.079 to give these penching funds exposure to revenue derived outside of Canada. Well, 267 00:18:53.119 --> 00:18:56.680 a lot of them still being able to meet their mandates of having to back 268 00:18:56.759 --> 00:19:03.200 Canadian companies. So if we look at the CDPQ Kai's depot Quebec, this 269 00:19:03.319 --> 00:19:07.160 is an incredible example. They have three hundred sixty billion dollars under management. 270 00:19:07.440 --> 00:19:11.119 They are the fourth largest penching fund in North America and, like, I 271 00:19:11.119 --> 00:19:14.160 don't know, I think five to ten percent of the dollars have to be 272 00:19:14.200 --> 00:19:18.839 placed in the province that we live in. There's not enough companies coming every 273 00:19:18.920 --> 00:19:23.480 year to fulfill that and so there's a supply and demand gap. And so 274 00:19:23.559 --> 00:19:29.119 what we tell investors is that the highest probability of liquidity will be through a 275 00:19:29.160 --> 00:19:37.200 public offering on the Toronto Stock Exchange and or via a partnership with a extremely 276 00:19:37.279 --> 00:19:41.240 large pension fund that will sweep the floor of the Cap table when the time 277 00:19:41.359 --> 00:19:45.720 is needed. Got It. That makes sense. So either obviously going public 278 00:19:45.839 --> 00:19:49.000 or or having a you know, pretty robust it seems like secondary market. 279 00:19:49.039 --> 00:19:53.640 The key to that robust. Secondary MIC is to make sure that the long 280 00:19:53.759 --> 00:19:59.200 term investors are aligned with the plans of seeing founder let companies go to distance. 281 00:19:59.240 --> 00:20:03.359 And the pension funds in Canada love backing founder companies that exist for a 282 00:20:03.440 --> 00:20:07.480 hundred years. Love that. Love that. That's great. It's great. 283 00:20:07.480 --> 00:20:10.559 Want to know as well, like talk a little bit to be about your 284 00:20:10.559 --> 00:20:14.880 decision making. Obviously you're in this for the long haul. You're thinking about 285 00:20:14.920 --> 00:20:18.240 this long term, two thousand and twenty five years, instead of maybe like 286 00:20:18.279 --> 00:20:23.279 a seven year time horizon and exit to a large CPG company. How do 287 00:20:23.480 --> 00:20:27.480 you three, you, les and Jake, think about decision making now to 288 00:20:27.519 --> 00:20:33.160 prepare yourselves for the long term versus short term? So I think less is 289 00:20:33.200 --> 00:20:37.559 really instilled counterculture and Jake and les, like she is the best at thinking 290 00:20:37.559 --> 00:20:45.279 through an independent Lens. Like really deeply. Less is intuitive at first principles 291 00:20:45.279 --> 00:20:48.000 thinking. It's something she's done her whole life without even knowing it. As 292 00:20:48.039 --> 00:20:53.000 first principles thinking. It is really deriving decision making from internal and so I 293 00:20:53.039 --> 00:20:59.279 think every decision we make at midday squares goes through like this one simple question, 294 00:20:59.279 --> 00:21:03.680 which is what do we need to do to achieve our growth plan and 295 00:21:04.000 --> 00:21:10.079 is all the decisions we are going to make to do that what we believe 296 00:21:10.240 --> 00:21:12.119 the herd would do? And then, if we do believe it's what the 297 00:21:12.240 --> 00:21:17.720 herd would do, could we at least explore the opposite of what the herd 298 00:21:17.759 --> 00:21:22.559 would do? And if we find that opposite component interesting, we do it. 299 00:21:22.599 --> 00:21:26.240 And we do it because I think we, all three of us, 300 00:21:26.440 --> 00:21:30.799 believe so deeply that the only way to have a seismic on average outcome is 301 00:21:30.839 --> 00:21:34.440 to do an average thing. And so that means like we're misunderstood a lot 302 00:21:34.480 --> 00:21:37.519 in terms of the playbooks that will run. And it doesn't mean that we 303 00:21:37.559 --> 00:21:41.960 won't run a typical CPG playbook for the sake of doing it. We do 304 00:21:41.000 --> 00:21:45.279 a lot of the typical CBG playbook stuff, but every now and then we 305 00:21:45.359 --> 00:21:49.000 make a crazy left turn when everybody's going right, and so like that is 306 00:21:49.200 --> 00:21:55.000 how we think about in why it's the long term helps it is that we 307 00:21:55.039 --> 00:21:57.920 know we have time for things to iron themselves out. We're not in a 308 00:21:59.000 --> 00:22:03.359 rush to try to make it work in twelve months, and so we could 309 00:22:03.359 --> 00:22:08.880 be wrong a lot more than our counterparts simply because we're trying to do this 310 00:22:08.920 --> 00:22:14.960 over a longer period of time. What's an example of maybe like something in 311 00:22:15.000 --> 00:22:18.400 a traditional CPG playbook that you folks are like? You know, we're definitely 312 00:22:18.440 --> 00:22:23.559 not doing that. We're definitely being going to go completely contrarian in this direction. 313 00:22:23.599 --> 00:22:27.119 The answer to that is manufacturing, and and here's why. Okay, 314 00:22:27.119 --> 00:22:30.480 there's many of these, but I think for your question, I think this 315 00:22:30.480 --> 00:22:36.000 will really prove the point of how we do it. Every single person that 316 00:22:36.079 --> 00:22:38.640 we pitched in series a was like didn't want to touch us with a ten 317 00:22:38.680 --> 00:22:45.440 foot poll because we want to build a Manufactupplat. I understand why that doesn't 318 00:22:45.480 --> 00:22:49.559 work if you're setting up yourself for a playbook to flip right away why manufacturing 319 00:22:49.680 --> 00:22:56.240 is hard. It drains the core of the entity in terms of the creativity 320 00:22:56.400 --> 00:23:00.400 because of how hard it is. But here's the piece that's very different. 321 00:23:00.440 --> 00:23:03.000 When we were thinking about everything and bringing together mid these squares, we had 322 00:23:03.000 --> 00:23:07.880 these like core principles of we had to bring to market something that was drastically 323 00:23:08.160 --> 00:23:12.519 different than anything that was in our area. It had to be, from 324 00:23:12.519 --> 00:23:17.960 a mouth profile and taste profile, super unique to midday squares. It had 325 00:23:18.039 --> 00:23:21.400 to have a square shape, it had to be a double layer stack. 326 00:23:21.440 --> 00:23:23.799 It had to have this ingredient profile. And when we went to go see 327 00:23:23.799 --> 00:23:29.319 all the manufacturers very quickly we realized they all had a different incentive than us. 328 00:23:29.359 --> 00:23:33.839 All those manufacturers wanted to make sure they optimize their downtime on machinery. 329 00:23:33.880 --> 00:23:37.440 They didn't have a lot of turnover. If you were using palm colonel, 330 00:23:38.000 --> 00:23:41.319 Palm Colnel oil and I'm using cocoa butter, why would I want to use 331 00:23:41.319 --> 00:23:45.680 warehouse space to bring in more cocoa butter? Like no, I want you 332 00:23:45.720 --> 00:23:48.160 to use poem Colonel Oil. And so I think a lot of founders, 333 00:23:48.160 --> 00:23:56.240 in order to avoid manufacturing like the plague, will sacrifice a lot of their 334 00:23:56.319 --> 00:24:00.079 product. And when you go and draw on the board are hey, the 335 00:24:00.119 --> 00:24:03.039 only way to pull this off as to manufacture. If we really want to 336 00:24:03.039 --> 00:24:07.440 bring our vision to life, we have to manufacture. And then you go 337 00:24:07.559 --> 00:24:11.440 and say, but we want to flip the company in five years. The 338 00:24:11.480 --> 00:24:15.599 math will never make sense. The math will never make sense, and so 339 00:24:15.640 --> 00:24:18.319 you will not do that. You just will not do that. If you 340 00:24:18.319 --> 00:24:22.720 were optimizing for that piece. But if you have a twenty five year game 341 00:24:22.759 --> 00:24:26.960 plan, then you know that by five years that your operational capacity will just 342 00:24:27.000 --> 00:24:30.839 start to make sense for a plant you're willing to invest way earlier and not 343 00:24:30.880 --> 00:24:36.960 be scared and not care and have the guts to show up to VC's and 344 00:24:37.079 --> 00:24:41.799 say we are a manufacturing plant and here's why we think that is the right 345 00:24:41.799 --> 00:24:45.880 call. It also shows that you also will have, you know, over 346 00:24:47.119 --> 00:24:52.119 years, maybe a clear competitive advantage be vertically intergeted right versus others, because 347 00:24:52.440 --> 00:24:53.880 I think that, you know, one of the things that investors have, 348 00:24:53.960 --> 00:24:59.000 you love to say, especially mean really just tech investors, some of them 349 00:24:59.079 --> 00:25:02.359 that you know CBG, is I venture backable. It's not bet your fundable 350 00:25:02.720 --> 00:25:06.440 because it's so the buried entry is so, so little. But if you're 351 00:25:06.440 --> 00:25:11.920 actually going out and you're building your opinionfactory right and like actually then controlling your 352 00:25:11.920 --> 00:25:15.400 own supply, a chain like that is that is defensible. It is so 353 00:25:15.480 --> 00:25:18.720 defensible and it's so scalable. Number one, we're really we're starting to get 354 00:25:18.720 --> 00:25:23.720 really fucking good at doing it. We can manufacture plants in less than twelve 355 00:25:23.759 --> 00:25:26.839 months anywhere in the world, because this plant that we built, none of 356 00:25:26.839 --> 00:25:30.640 it came from Montreal. So it doesn't matter where the fuck we build the 357 00:25:30.640 --> 00:25:34.920 plant. We know it's true. It doesn't matter where we it's like none 358 00:25:34.920 --> 00:25:38.519 of it comes from Montreal anyway. Even till this day, men investors are 359 00:25:38.519 --> 00:25:41.559 still pushing us to try to like teach co manufacturers how to make mid day 360 00:25:41.559 --> 00:25:45.279 squares. Like why the fuck would we do that? Like in what world, 361 00:25:45.279 --> 00:25:48.640 and this is to all the co manufacturers that are out there, if 362 00:25:48.720 --> 00:25:52.680 you know how to make mid day squares and present us with a final midday 363 00:25:52.720 --> 00:25:56.799 squares without us having to teach you, will use you tomorrow, but I 364 00:25:56.960 --> 00:26:00.359 fucking teaching you how to make mid day squares. Yeah, we're not going 365 00:26:00.400 --> 00:26:04.359 back and forth on ingredients and how you need to adapt to us like that 366 00:26:04.480 --> 00:26:07.759 is like it just makes no sense. Yeah, no, totally, I 367 00:26:07.799 --> 00:26:11.640 think that will. We actually kind of skipped over was when you were first 368 00:26:11.720 --> 00:26:15.880 thinking about in CPG and kind of going through the fish that has the pod 369 00:26:15.920 --> 00:26:19.680 that had a lot of fishes in it. That was a pretty robust ecosystem. 370 00:26:19.720 --> 00:26:23.799 That why that is, you know, CPG, what landed you on 371 00:26:23.920 --> 00:26:29.480 chocolate primarily, and obviously, like could love to kind of also hear about 372 00:26:29.480 --> 00:26:33.440 how you approached the branding as well to to mid day. Well, I 373 00:26:33.480 --> 00:26:36.680 get to the branding part, we're really gonna focus not of me, but 374 00:26:36.759 --> 00:26:41.160 just done. That's less his piece to the whole equation. But chocolate is 375 00:26:41.200 --> 00:26:47.680 the largest traded commodity in the world when it comes to the snacking segment. 376 00:26:47.759 --> 00:26:51.039 I don't know. Okay, eats other commodities in terms of core food, 377 00:26:51.079 --> 00:26:55.960 but in the snacking segment it beats everything, inclusive of chips. It's recognized 378 00:26:56.000 --> 00:27:00.880 worldwide, so it doesn't require education. You if you give somebody chocolate in 379 00:27:02.000 --> 00:27:03.480 anywhere you are in the world, they know exactly what you're doing. It's 380 00:27:03.519 --> 00:27:07.839 a form of endearment friendship. Here you go, enjoy. Take a minute. 381 00:27:07.039 --> 00:27:12.319 And I'm really, really into saturated markets. I think saturated markets are 382 00:27:12.359 --> 00:27:18.240 the most exciting places to play in CPG because by definition, in my opinion, 383 00:27:18.319 --> 00:27:22.880 saturated markets have not been innovated. That's why they are saturated. So 384 00:27:23.000 --> 00:27:26.799 how is saturated market, in my opinion, comes to be? Is You 385 00:27:26.839 --> 00:27:30.920 have a leader come into the category and then a ton of me to products 386 00:27:30.920 --> 00:27:36.480 come in and then a lot of people do very mild variations on me to 387 00:27:36.680 --> 00:27:40.680 products, and so then you have this massive sea of like pretty much a 388 00:27:40.680 --> 00:27:44.599 bunch of the same products. When you look at like confectionery chocolate. Like 389 00:27:44.640 --> 00:27:48.400 globally there's like for products and then there's a bunch of copycats around them. 390 00:27:48.480 --> 00:27:51.079 Right. You have like the snickers bar, and we're depending on where you 391 00:27:51.160 --> 00:27:52.799 are in the world, and might not be snickers, it might be snikers 392 00:27:52.880 --> 00:27:56.920 like, but it's a snickers bar. You have the Hershey's classic chocolate. 393 00:27:57.240 --> 00:28:00.960 You have a cookies and cream. You have like a you know, a 394 00:28:02.039 --> 00:28:06.079 fucking Moon's or an almond joy style, like. There's not that much innovation 395 00:28:06.279 --> 00:28:10.440 in terms of the cab, but there's tons of money being transacted in it. 396 00:28:10.480 --> 00:28:15.640 And when you see these like micro dollars being transacted, and it gets 397 00:28:15.680 --> 00:28:18.400 me excited because it proves that in a leading brand could be birth it in 398 00:28:18.480 --> 00:28:22.480 that category and you've already solved the problem of product market fate. You don't 399 00:28:22.480 --> 00:28:26.920 have to worry about anything. You get to plug into this like super charge 400 00:28:26.920 --> 00:28:30.960 network of consumers. Right, there's a reason why a hundred forty eight billion 401 00:28:30.960 --> 00:28:34.839 dollars of chocolate is being traded two years because people are ready to fucking buy 402 00:28:34.920 --> 00:28:38.519 chocolate, so let's give them some chocolate, you know like that. That's 403 00:28:38.519 --> 00:28:41.359 so. That was like, I think the Cora and then a report that 404 00:28:41.400 --> 00:28:47.279 we received from somebody that showed me the breakdown of real chocolates growth and plant 405 00:28:47.279 --> 00:28:51.359 based proteins. Growth was fucking exciting for us, like I remember when les 406 00:28:51.359 --> 00:28:53.000 and I were looking at the data. are like wow, this is this 407 00:28:53.079 --> 00:28:57.079 is something that I think we're willing to pour our lives into and dedicate the 408 00:28:57.079 --> 00:29:02.720 next twenty five years to. Is there's enough damage to be done here and 409 00:29:02.839 --> 00:29:07.839 I think largely that the current market missed the opportunity because if you looked at 410 00:29:07.880 --> 00:29:12.880 what was going on in plant based chocolate and confectionery chocolate in general, everybody 411 00:29:12.920 --> 00:29:17.720 was using chocolate and robing, which is that little one millimeter chocolate, you 412 00:29:17.759 --> 00:29:21.920 know, like couverture on a product. But I think what the real chocolate 413 00:29:21.920 --> 00:29:25.480 movement really showed what was led by like, you know, hugh kitchen and 414 00:29:26.319 --> 00:29:30.359 lynce, crazy growth from two thousand and eleven, and then you over have 415 00:29:30.559 --> 00:29:33.839 Lili's in there. I'm not sure if Lily's just considered real chocolate though, 416 00:29:33.079 --> 00:29:37.680 simply because they use sugar alcohols. But Anyway, point is is that what 417 00:29:37.720 --> 00:29:41.720 you saw in the chocolate movement was people were really into thick chocolate, real 418 00:29:41.880 --> 00:29:45.400 og chocolate and so that's where that Aha moment that les and I had had 419 00:29:45.440 --> 00:29:52.000 of like what if we brought together the two categories and kind of rethought what 420 00:29:52.160 --> 00:29:55.480 it would be like to make Hershey's in this day and age or nest Ly 421 00:29:55.599 --> 00:30:00.960 Chold like? What would a confectionery chocolate company launching in two thousand and twenty 422 00:30:00.000 --> 00:30:04.519 half to look like? And that's really where like all the motivation came from. 423 00:30:04.519 --> 00:30:07.240 Looking back or maybe some of like the best decisions that you feel like 424 00:30:07.240 --> 00:30:10.839 you made and maybe some of the worst dicisions that you feel like you made 425 00:30:10.880 --> 00:30:14.480 over the past you know, a few years that you started midday. So 426 00:30:15.079 --> 00:30:21.240 deciding to really focus on our local market and got almost tell about a million 427 00:30:21.240 --> 00:30:26.240 bucks of revenue just in Montreal. So like really just going hardcore on that 428 00:30:26.759 --> 00:30:30.640 was, I think, one of the best decisions. Obviously, I know, 429 00:30:30.680 --> 00:30:36.720 I don't want to be a broken record, becoming a manufacturer is the 430 00:30:36.799 --> 00:30:40.680 hands down one of the best, hands down decisions. And then the last 431 00:30:40.799 --> 00:30:45.160 one was deciding to have an inhouse media team that you know, tells the 432 00:30:45.279 --> 00:30:49.000 entire story. Was the best. Now let's go to the worst, worst 433 00:30:49.039 --> 00:30:55.839 decisions. There's been a few things that we've got wrong on a hiring perspective 434 00:30:55.880 --> 00:31:00.359 from not doing proper due diligence. I think there's some serious mistakes that had 435 00:31:00.359 --> 00:31:07.680 happened that could have actually been pretty detrimental for midday squares and in retrospect, 436 00:31:07.720 --> 00:31:11.680 we probably could have avoided those like because we didn't stick to our game plan 437 00:31:11.839 --> 00:31:15.559 on how we went and hired some of those those members, and it's not 438 00:31:15.599 --> 00:31:19.440 their fault. It was really comes down to it being a midday squares fault 439 00:31:19.480 --> 00:31:23.480 of just not following our playbook of due diligence on that end. A ton 440 00:31:23.519 --> 00:31:30.279 of small poor decisions along the way, and the best way to describe all 441 00:31:30.319 --> 00:31:36.920 those poor decisions is us being affected by the noise. There's like we all 442 00:31:36.960 --> 00:31:41.359 agree and all of the poorest decisions, like Jake Les and either on all 443 00:31:41.400 --> 00:31:45.359 the poor decisions we've made, we've all had the answer and didn't listen to 444 00:31:45.359 --> 00:31:51.799 it. Collectively, we chose, for whatever reason, to continue against what 445 00:31:51.839 --> 00:31:56.319 our bodies were screaming was the answer. That is like the common theme over 446 00:31:56.359 --> 00:32:00.559 and over in my life of poor decisions and I don't know why I can't 447 00:32:00.640 --> 00:32:05.000 learn. So that's really fascinating also since, like, I also want to 448 00:32:05.039 --> 00:32:07.720 know how the decision making process works a mid day where you have, you 449 00:32:07.720 --> 00:32:12.839 know, three cofounders, all three of you are family. How do you 450 00:32:12.880 --> 00:32:17.160 think about, like organizational wise, of like responsibilities, DIV DAP and make 451 00:32:17.200 --> 00:32:22.559 sure that you are able to collaborate but also the same time, have your 452 00:32:22.599 --> 00:32:25.079 own distinctive roles per se? No, really important. I mean we really 453 00:32:25.119 --> 00:32:30.839 abide to org structure. We were all very clear what the roles were going 454 00:32:30.880 --> 00:32:35.279 to be before we started the day squares. It's defined. We talked about 455 00:32:35.319 --> 00:32:39.640 them in therapy almost every week since we've started. So we talked about them 456 00:32:39.640 --> 00:32:44.000 in therapy almost every week since we started. We have a therapist and coach 457 00:32:44.079 --> 00:32:47.920 that we see and so we really go through irks and Ekes and so like. 458 00:32:49.000 --> 00:32:52.039 One of the things is is you can't have your cake and eat it 459 00:32:52.079 --> 00:32:55.960 too, no matter what right in terms of being a leader and obst role. 460 00:32:57.279 --> 00:33:00.519 And so when you define who's making what decision, you have to then 461 00:33:00.640 --> 00:33:04.920 your job becomes, let's say, Amongst Les, J K R I. 462 00:33:04.920 --> 00:33:07.680 If I have an opinion on media, let's say in every all media reports 463 00:33:07.680 --> 00:33:13.279 and to less. Okay, I can only give my opinion and attempt to 464 00:33:13.319 --> 00:33:19.039 persuade through writing a memo or a deck or something to it is my job 465 00:33:19.079 --> 00:33:22.039 now to be a salesman, but ultimately the decision lays in les in the 466 00:33:22.039 --> 00:33:29.200 media team's hands, and so changes the dynamic from being argumentative to persuasive. 467 00:33:29.240 --> 00:33:34.359 You have to actually fight to persuade, which is the way every organization should 468 00:33:34.359 --> 00:33:37.519 be, which is I know ultimately that the decisionmaker is going to make their 469 00:33:37.559 --> 00:33:42.319 decision. They don't have to side with me. It is my job to 470 00:33:42.400 --> 00:33:45.480 sell my idea and if I can't, then I failed. I really like 471 00:33:45.559 --> 00:33:50.799 that approach. What's been something like the most challenging part of being an entrepreneur, 472 00:33:50.839 --> 00:33:55.559 what you perceive as a media gratification or happiness, to find your state 473 00:33:55.559 --> 00:34:00.440 of flow of enjoying the journey, and that is I think every entrepreneur's hardest 474 00:34:00.480 --> 00:34:05.240 piece of the journey is there comes a day where you have to stop being 475 00:34:05.279 --> 00:34:09.360 miserable. I think every single entrepreneur listening, and if you disagree with me, 476 00:34:09.400 --> 00:34:12.719 call me. I would love to hear. No, I would love 477 00:34:12.760 --> 00:34:15.599 to really hear it, goes through a period of where they find themselves in 478 00:34:15.679 --> 00:34:20.559 misery and their trajectory is an entrepreneur. They've created all this thing that is 479 00:34:20.599 --> 00:34:24.360 making them absolutely miserable. And a fork presents itself in the road for you 480 00:34:24.400 --> 00:34:28.000 at that moment where you have to decide if you're going to go left or 481 00:34:28.119 --> 00:34:30.440 right, and are you going to fight to choose to not be a miserable 482 00:34:30.639 --> 00:34:36.840 entrepreneur and enjoy the journey, because that journey is fucking heart it's plagued with 483 00:34:36.960 --> 00:34:39.719 humans that are going to not see eye to eye with you, internal team 484 00:34:39.719 --> 00:34:44.079 members that are going to think you did them wrong, you God did wrong. 485 00:34:44.119 --> 00:34:47.119 I mean, it's posed with all of these really ugly truths about being 486 00:34:47.199 --> 00:34:52.519 an adult and growing and it breaks your spirit every day. And so how 487 00:34:52.639 --> 00:34:57.559 much of that are you willing to make your reality? Is the hardest part 488 00:34:57.639 --> 00:35:00.599 versus saying no, I don't want to be miserable every day. This is 489 00:35:00.599 --> 00:35:04.400 something I choose to do every day. There's a game to this, and 490 00:35:04.440 --> 00:35:07.199 this is where I always say, like, get that therapy. It helps 491 00:35:07.280 --> 00:35:12.440 get the people that hold you accountable to grow. So like, for instance, 492 00:35:12.559 --> 00:35:16.079 Les came up with this great idea of every year in September, there's 493 00:35:16.119 --> 00:35:22.039 an alarm that goes off in her phone that asks her and us if we 494 00:35:22.079 --> 00:35:24.079 want to continue doing this for another year. And if we do want to 495 00:35:24.079 --> 00:35:28.840 continue doing this for another year, it's time to reflect about things that are 496 00:35:28.880 --> 00:35:32.440 making us miserable and being okay with confronting those miseries and then deciding how we 497 00:35:32.480 --> 00:35:36.719 fix them, because we came into two thousand and twenty two and we really 498 00:35:36.719 --> 00:35:39.119 promised each other that we didn't want to be miserable anymore. There was just 499 00:35:39.159 --> 00:35:43.960 too much misery in two thousand and twenty one from a if you put it 500 00:35:44.000 --> 00:35:46.800 on a way Er, there was more misery than there was good times in 501 00:35:46.920 --> 00:35:52.719 terms of stress and dealing with everything that brought to midday squares. And that's 502 00:35:52.719 --> 00:35:57.280 where you have to start emotionally detaching yourself from this entity, which is you 503 00:35:57.280 --> 00:36:00.920 have to start bringing in components of enjoyment that have nothing to do with the 504 00:36:00.920 --> 00:36:06.719 success or stresses of midday squares. One to another important thing that I appreciate 505 00:36:06.840 --> 00:36:09.840 she's done for me and continues to do is telling me, like nick, 506 00:36:09.880 --> 00:36:13.639 this is what we get paid to do, that's our job. Our job 507 00:36:13.800 --> 00:36:15.800 is to solve all these problems and to deal with all these headaches, and 508 00:36:15.840 --> 00:36:20.440 to do that is the job. And so you you have to enjoy that 509 00:36:20.480 --> 00:36:22.320 piece of it. You have to start, you know, attacking it and 510 00:36:22.320 --> 00:36:28.199 stop being like, Oh, if only I could have midday squares without these 511 00:36:28.280 --> 00:36:30.519 things. That's like utopic thinking, that's like, you know, that's where 512 00:36:30.519 --> 00:36:36.440 you end up in really dangerous area. So, like changing the mentality of 513 00:36:36.719 --> 00:36:39.000 this is something I choose to do every day. I want to be really 514 00:36:39.000 --> 00:36:43.760 good at it, I want to enjoy it and I want to make it 515 00:36:43.800 --> 00:36:47.519 a process that has nothing to do with the ebbs and flows of it is 516 00:36:47.599 --> 00:36:52.599 the most important thing you can do in the journey and my opinion and what 517 00:36:52.599 --> 00:36:54.960 we've learned so far, I appreciate that. You know, I also like 518 00:36:55.039 --> 00:36:59.679 the fact that you all evaluate whether you want to continue doing it or not. 519 00:36:59.719 --> 00:37:01.039 I think you guys back to your first point of like this company doesn't 520 00:37:01.079 --> 00:37:06.039 find any of you guys. So now that's that's amazing. Well, nick, 521 00:37:06.039 --> 00:37:07.639 this has been so much fun. Thanks again for coming on the show. 522 00:37:07.840 --> 00:37:12.360 I love following you on twitter and when you had an opening on it. 523 00:37:12.440 --> 00:37:15.280 I want to job when I love talking shop, I just I really 524 00:37:15.280 --> 00:37:20.960 want to encourage a new generation of entrepreneurs and that's why I love doing this 525 00:37:21.000 --> 00:37:24.079 stuff, like really thinking about this differently. I appreciate that. I appreciate 526 00:37:24.119 --> 00:37:28.880 that. Now you this is incredible. Thanks against so much for your diame, 527 00:37:29.000 --> 00:37:30.760 Nick. And there you have it. I hope you all enjoy nick 528 00:37:30.840 --> 00:37:35.559 story of how why he started a bid day squares. If you enjoyed this 529 00:37:35.599 --> 00:37:37.360 episode, I love it if you'd write a review on the apple podcast. 530 00:37:37.639 --> 00:37:42.119 You're also welcome to follow me your host, Mike, on twitter at Mike 531 00:37:42.119 --> 00:37:45.559 Gelb, and also follow for episode announcements at Consumer VC. Thanks for listening, 532 00:37:45.639 --> everyone,