The Entrepreneur Forum | Startups | Entrepreneurship | Starting a Business | Motivation | Success

INTRO I Did It! Kinda.

ShanghaiSix

New Contributor
Dec 1, 2019
11
6
13
Los Angeles, CA
All,
Regularly listen to audio books about business development and personal development. Over the last ten years, I've run two separate military charities. From 2010-2015, I ran one (which shall not be named), which I lost to an unscrupulous business partner I trusted. I then turned around, did the exact same thing, and because I was the subject matter expert and cared about the project vs trying to flip a dollar, I've built Stack Up (stackup.org). We support US and allied veterans through gaming and video game platforms. What started out as a cute thing I did on the weekends, sending Xboxes to guys and gals deployed overseas, we are now partnered with the Center for Disease Control to use gaming as a platform for fighting veteran suicide. It's been a hell of a ride, and I'm just watching us grow more and more with each year. It's extremely exciting.

I started the charity because of 'Murica regularly boxing up whatever crap it could find (baby powder, wet wipes), shipping it over, and clapping themselves on the back for "helping". Meanwhile, while I was deployed overseas, we had shipping containers full of well meaning but deluded donations from the civilian world. As MJ claimed in the book, I took an already existing thing and added value to it. Because it's charity, I don't need to worry about fighting anyone else out there in the field, we've enjoyed a pretty nice run as the only team out there in the games' space doing what we do, and having an amazing track record.

The PROBLEM? Yeah, no lambos in the charity world. I mean, there are, but those are always the charities where watchdog groups like to burn in effigy for misuse of donor dollars. I make a reasonable living, working on my own terms, enjoy the adoration of folks who appreciate me ACTUALLY helping veterans the way America is regularly thumping their chests about ('Murica loves the troops, but when it comes to opening their wallet...yeah, no), but I'm going to work myself into the ground long before I retire. My seven person staff is ridiculously underpaid (many are on military disability and are in it for the love of the game), and I'd rather see their pay and benefits go up over time to match mine vs. buying a yacht for myself (haha). We work ourselves into the ground, and love what we do (yes, I know that's blasphemy here, but loving what you do, definitely doesn't hurt). It's Sunday, I'm here working, streaming, AND typing on here about the charity when most people would just be watching "the game", etc.

I'm at a weird crossroads, which is why I'm typing and decided to join up. I had an idea six months ago for a t-shirt line (lame), but it's a pretty cool brand idea that I'd like to see if it floats. The problem then becomes me splitting my time. I am a big subscriber to the "I don't have time is the biggest lie you can tell yourself" mantra, and I know I could cut back on some gaming and sleep to start figuring this out to see if I can turn a buck with this side project to my side project.

Rambling now. I've done some very basic work so far on the project, but if anyone has gone through the pains of creating an online t-shirt/clothing/brand that could link stuff here, I'd appreciate it!
 

Don't like ads? Remove them while supporting the forum. Subscribe.

Attachments

Visionary96

New Contributor
Oct 23, 2018
13
16
16
Torquay
wish you the best of luck with Stack up mate. Im sure also the increasing popularity of VR gaming is only going to benefit the organisation. Can see that working really well with what you’re going for.
 
OP
OP
ShanghaiSix

ShanghaiSix

New Contributor
Dec 1, 2019
11
6
13
Los Angeles, CA
wish you the best of luck with Stack up mate. Im sure also the increasing popularity of VR gaming is only going to benefit the organisation. Can see that working really well with what you’re going for.
Thank you! I appreciate the kind words, and ironically, the founder and creator of Oculus is one of our big supporters every year (he's a big military supporter, has gone on to found his own military contracting organization).

While the first half of this book was obviously about breaking free and taking that first step, the back half of "Unscripted" was a surprising mental exercise with some real nuggets of wisdom. I don't think I would be re-dinking around with this t-shirt brand idea if it hadn't been for the audio book mentally coaxing it out of me.

Anyone on here in the t-shirt biz with some pointers? I'm also very concerned about making sure my "idea" doesn't get swiped by anyone. Once I say the words and show what they mean, there's might definitely be someone out there who might sweep in and swipe it. I own the websites associated and have placeholders there, etc. Just making sure my intellectual property is secured.
 

MJ DeMarco

Administrator
Staff member
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Summit Attendee
Speedway Pass
Jul 23, 2007
29,473
102,633
3,751
Fountain Hills, AZ
Welcome my friend, and much respect for you for running a charity Op.
 

Create an account or login to comment

You must be a member in order to leave a comment

Create account

Create an account on our community. It's easy!

Log in

Already have an account? Log in here.


Fastlane Insiders

View the forum AD FREE.
Private, unindexed content
Detailed process/execution threads
Monthly conference calls with doers
Ideas needing execution, more!

Join Fastlane Insiders.

Sponsored Offers

Lex DeVille's - Advanced Freelance Udemy Courses!
-- HALLOWEEN SPECIAL STARTS TODAY! Get any of my courses at Udemy's current best price through Friday! Use code: HALLOWEEN Use any of the links...
Top Bottom