Neil Patel

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Gene Hoffman has started and sold several startups. As well as becoming one of the youngest CEOs of a public company in the United States ever. His latest venture, Chia Network, has attracted funding from top-tier investors like True Ventures, Richmond Global Ventures, Breyer Capital, and Naval Ravikant.

In this episode, you will learn:

  • What Chia Network is doing
  • Embracing regulations
  • Carbon credits
  • Fundraising
  • M&A deals
  • Gene Hoffman’s top advice for others considering launching a business


For a winning deck, take a look at the pitch deck template created by Silicon Valley legend, Peter Thiel (see it here) that I recently covered. Thiel was the first angel investor in Facebook with a $500K check that turned into more than $1 billion in cash.

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The Ultimate Guide To Pitch Decks

Moreover, I also provided a commentary on a pitch deck from an Uber competitor that has raised over $400 million (see it here).

Remember to unlock for free the pitch deck template that is being used by founders around the world to raise millions below.

About Gene Hoffman:

Gene Hoffman is a serial entrepreneur and former public company CEO. He has built and sold three companies to PGP, Inc., Vivendi-Universal, and Amdocs.

Gene has been a board member at eight different technology and energy companies and served as a liquidation committee chairman and as chairman at the company he most recently founded. He also serves on two non-profit boards, one of which he co-founded.

Gene has been appointed a special advisor to the board of a hybrid profit/non-profit company to provide and initially execute a turnaround plan that led to a successful acquisition.

He is the audit committee chairman qualified and has 21 years of working in high compliance environments with 12 years of managing PCI and SSAE-16 compliance for the storage of 220,000,000 credit cards.

Hoffman has built and scaled companies in enterprise software and SaaS, consumer subscriptions, cryptography, and software development. He has led teams from three friends with an idea to nearly 500 after acquiring aggressively with public equity.

Gene has raised over $150,000,000 in public and private markets, acquired four companies, and sold three.

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Connect with Gene Hoffman:

Read the Full Transcription of the Interview:

Alejandro Cremades: Alrighty hello everyone and welcome to the deal maker show so very exciting gifts that we have today someone that has done it so many times I mean I think that we’re going to be learning quite a bit. So again, you know the good stuff that we like to hear building scaling financing even exiting you know, multiple companies. So. Yeah I think we’re going to be finding this very very inspiring so without Furtherdo Gene Hoffman welcome to the show. So originally born and raised in North Carolina so give us a little of ah, a walkth throughugh memory lane. How was life growing up there.

Gene Hoffman: Um, thank you for having me.

Gene Hoffman: Well so ah, my dad was ah a former cpa who ended up running a company that was kind of nationwide and the executive offices were there but they were actually like the operational officers were reno so ended up with this kind of weird like living in North Carolina and spending summers in Reno Nevada um but ended up also ah heading on a straight line toward carolina basketball um I had gotten involved with a friend of coach Smith who ran our basketball program at my high school and ah ended up kind of being recruited and at Carolina and in fact, you know we were talking about this earlier. I expected I’d be a sportscaster I had done some radio work and had a recording studio and so it was just that this internet thing came around and it looked like it might need some fixing.

Alejandro Cremades: And let’s talk about that basketball for a second here. What do you think you? you got from basketball and and when it comes to leadership. So.

Gene Hoffman: So coach Smith is just a real scion of leadership is you know a finishing school for young men who are become world famous superstars you know when you look at folks like Michael Jordan Vince Carter you know you get the set of skills that that system teaches and you know, ah. We’ll we’ll kind of talk about those later but I ended up being one of the youngest ceos of a public company United States ever and I could never have pulled it off without what I had learned from count of basketball. You know it’s everything from how do you handle the media to you know what are your core principles and you know thinking about things strategically so it was just a very very powerful set of. Ah, you know as I said fine young finishing school for likely to be successful. Young men.

Alejandro Cremades: So then let’s talk about what you were adding you know what you were alluding to earlier. They’re fixing the internet that came out at that point. So so what happened after you graduated.

Gene Hoffman: Well before I graduated some friends of mine and I were seeing what was happening and you know 9093 when I went to Carolina it was oddly a little bit of a hotbed of the internet sunsight was there linux was hosted there originally and I was watching a ah video on gopher. This is pre-web of an incoming thunderstorm and you know this used to be the hardest thing to find in 9092 or 9091 you know you hope that maybe the television station would cut in and show you that in a ad break or something but the idea that I could just go get the radar and watch it right now. It just made it very clear to me that the internet was going to be huge. Ah. And then when the Netscape Ipo occurred a bunch of my friends were saying hey we should do something you know, let’s start an isp and I was like isps feel very very you know margin narrow and repeatable with no moat and so we all kept talking about things and then hotwired put up the first internet ad and as soon as I saw that I was like. We can fix that we can give people the control over whether or not they see ads and we can go build that that’ll be an interesting way for us to build a real brand as a software company. Well we launched internet fast forward and cookie cutter. Ah you know these days. You know what is ah is generally ad blockers and cookie management in your web browser and it blew up.

Alejandro Cremades: So then what happened next? okay.

Gene Hoffman: Ah, you know cover the business section the New York Times for a little while where every 30 minutes on headline news because of course this was prime ipo season for folks like infoy and excite and all of those and you know watching those guys on squawk box get asked about you know? Well, you’re say you’re going to make money on ads. But how are you going to handle the ad blocker was really amazing. So ah, it blew up ah and it blew up to the point where we decided that it was time to build something that was more of a revenue product instead of a kind of you know, exposure product and that led us toward Pgp pretty good privacy. The the kind of original crypto software for email and ah we went to integrate Pgp in a nescape mail and this is shortly after. The federal government stopped investigating Phil Zimmerman for exporting Pgp illegally so ah, they ended up flying us out instead of us licensing Pgp they turned the tables and bought our little company out of Chapel Hill and moved to solve the bay area.

Alejandro Cremades: Wow now in this case, you know like the company was acquired by Mcafee so by Mcafee so what kind of biibility. Do you think that gave you into the full cycle of a business.

Gene Hoffman: Well, it was also who I got to work with so you know the person I reported to ah in business development was the former general counsel of Borland um, and so you know he had this set of stories and friends. This is Bob Cohn um that really got me a you know. 1 one is not the right term for it. It’s you know the super graduateduate class in how does the valley work that was just really powerful. It was you know the ability to have an idea and be immediately talking to the right person its sun in charge of Java the next day. Um, yeah, that was I think one of the most important things and also seeing you know, not everything went right. Inside Pgp of as to how they raised financing and some of their leadership decisions and so that was actually as valuable or more valuable than you know, being at a place where everything just kind of goes right? and each step just know works.

Alejandro Cremades: Now in this case for you I mean it was like a really nice segue into you know what would be a really nice exit you know, ah for you So tell us about how em music came about as a result.

Gene Hoffman: Well so at Pgp when I knew it was to be sold to Mcafee I was kind of thinking of what am I going to do next and it was a tie between at the time a new cryptocurrency or a music service and both these kind of came through what I was seeing at Pgp um Warner Brothers had come to Pgp to ask if we could help them with. File sharing file trading because we you know there was apparently this huge movement of mpthree files and this was the first time I’d heard about I was too busy. You know running a run a software company work for the basketball team. Ah, and that really put it on my radar as wow you know there is huge demand for this digital music already. And it was really a hard call and it ultimately ended up being my my then girlfriend now wife looking at me and going about cryptocurrency back then so we have to live on a strange caribbean island surrounded by arm guards. Can we go back to the United States probably not, you should do that music thing so you know that plus ah turned out Bob Cohn was my cofounder of your music his. Ah, dad had been very active in music publishing and he and his dad had written kind of the book on the music publishing side of the music business. So you know we had real domain expertise and it was very clear that was an opportunity. It was one of those just you know right? place right? time right? Folks kind of opportunities.

Alejandro Cremades: So you build that up and then eventually you sold you sold the company you sold the company to be Wendy for about forty forty million bucks um so what was that transaction like I mean how how did the transaction come about give us a little of an insider and insider lens in here.

Gene Hoffman: Yeah there’s so there’s 2 things going on. You know we took the company public and so we were you know the Nasdaq forty tech company thing. Um and we ended up buying rolling stone ah dot com so we had the online rights for it and you know obviously sort of part of marketing the music. But what was interesting was we bought it right before the dot com crash. And so a lot of properties couldn’t sell ads after the crash we could but the metrics didn’t work right? The you know deal with rolling stone kind of assumed cpms that were much higher than they ultimately were so it actually put us in the corner but we’ve been building such a relationship with the various record labels because we were out there saying you know look you’re going to have to make music. Easier to buy subscribe and use otherwise you are going to continue to have these piracy problems in the background and it was those conversations that led ultimately to kind of a strategic conversation with um ega bronfman and you know universal music effectively in the Vindi world. For them to say this is a real opportunity. You know this is the only company that’s actually gone out and sold digital music in any scale because we were actually really starting to scale up the sufficient but business side of the music model quite well actually so that was you know, really those kind of ongoing multi-year conversations with the likely strategic partners that would either be a partner or an acquirer.

Alejandro Cremades: So then after the transaction was done What happened.

Gene Hoffman: I became a music executive for a year it was really quite hilarious. So one of the strangest things I saw you ah had to have the right type of car. You actually had have it proved in your employment agreement that your car had to be nice enough had to like you know argue that my car was nice enough for them. Funny stuff like that. But what? what? I found most interesting what they found interesting too was ah you know back during the jupiter conferences or whatever you know there was a question that would always get asked about what was the right way to kind of go about coin to this market and I had been giving them the same answer the whole time and I did it again as an employee and they were all kind of shocked. They’re like you weren’t lying to us I’m like no some of us in tech are actually trying to like help you build a real market here.

Alejandro Cremades: So then so then for you I mean you didn’t stay long as they say once an entrepreneur entrepreneur always an entrepreneur. So how did the idea of being this here I come about because with been this? Yeah actually you did stayve you know they are you know, pushing that for a little over 13 years I mean that in dark years when you’re building a company is it’s.

Gene Hoffman: That’s right.

Gene Hoffman: Um, yes.

Alejandro Cremades: Is is a long time. So so how did the idea you know and the opportunity of being this here come about knocking.

Gene Hoffman: So it really came from being able to operate any music so when we sold it to universal. You know we really got to focus directly on just the business and so you really started looking. Okay, what subscriber lifetime? what’s total lifetime where are all these subscribers going that still want to be our subscribers. And it turns out that the credit card infrastructure was just never really designed for ongoing subscription services. It was designed to sell you a fur coat mail order. Um, and so with that you know we’d spent a lot of time Mark Randolph again the but orlean connection you know Mark was original Ceo and founder of Netflix. He and I used to have quarterly conference calls about how broken the credit card infrastructure was and so it showed me that very clearly you know from 6003 on software entertainment was all going to go subscription for the while and if that was the case. It’s an art. To keep long-term subscriber values so vendc was definitely born of that operational realization that there was a real problem that you could significantly solve and very profitably solve. So you know it took some time for us to get to a place where we believed that major corporations would hand us all of their credit cards. But ultimately they did. We ended up running the backend infrastructure for the Nfl. As they went over the top folks like dollarshaveclub you know you name it. It was easier to tell you who we didn’t support and that was Spotify and Netflix and just because they were early and Netflix had a lot of the same information we did so you know from that perspective. It was ah a true saas build I mean saas companies take longer.

Gene Hoffman: But you know we built something real and had you know, multiple interested acquirerers at the right time and were able to exit to amocs in 2017

Alejandro Cremades: And now in this case I mean you build this company from 2003 all the way up until 2016 and you did raise some money I mean during that range of time I mean we went from like. Completely green area on the vc I mean for example, like the Vc you know the venture space in in in New York was completely green. It was like almost unexistent. So I guess for you. How was that the journey of of raising money because you raised some money you know for this company. Ah I think that you raised about forty million bucks how was that the how was that experience of raising that money throughout that range of time. So.

Gene Hoffman: Well, it helped to have already had some you know, successful exits whether they were big or not. You know you had as an entrepreneur a bit of a track record and so people knew that you could actually kind of navigate the system and you know it’s also really handy when you do have that kind of depth of network to know you know. Which vc should I get a warm intro to by whom and how and you know once you then get started. You know as long as you remember what you’re trying to do for the venture firms which is trying to 10 x ten x some over 5 if you will but these days it’s more 10 x over 10 ah. Then you understand what their motivations are you know you got to keep the business growing and that’s what we did so fundamentally you know it’s a saas business. It doesn’t necessarily grow as up and to the right as the traditionalitional businesses did but that a r you know we had 4 or 5 year customer lives from very very large customers and so from that perspective we had kind of negative churn. Um, we’d actually see more growth in our existing but subscriber base than any losses that we saw of individual customers. So you know it was really being as capital efficient as possible. But in Sas you know it takes some sort of core base to get you to scale. That’s what we did. We got to scale and then we kind of used venture debt from there out to continue to scale up. Um, and you know you kind of knew that you put a dollar in on your one and you got about a dollar 10 out and you know twelve thirteen months later

Alejandro Cremades: So you are alluding to it. The company got acquired by amdos for north of a hundred million bucks but why why did you guys think it was the the right timing to to go for an acquisition.

Gene Hoffman: So it was a couple things. We were really scaling out. Um, you know we were one of those weird deals where in fact, our model was a little conservative in its next year’s operation when we sold it. It was one of those kind of businesses where we really had good control over it really understood how it worked so it was scaling nicely. It meant that we could get good a multiple. Um, it. Also you know at 13 you start to worry about your vcs because you start getting into their ah portfolios that need to liquidate and pass back to the lps so you know it was those various things and as I said we created a competitive bidding environment. We’d really you know, shown ourselves to be the. Kind of core platform that the television properties and the movie properties were using to go over the top and that was obviously a big deal and especially strategic for amdocs who counted all those those folks as customers for a very different sort of product of theirs.

Alejandro Cremades: Now in this case for you. You took some time off and then you know as as you said you know to upgrade the the boat and and do other Stuff. You know when you’re a founder I think that when you have like those downtimes I mean I think it can be sometimes a little weird. So. How long did that time off last and what were you doing during that time off.

Gene Hoffman: So this time around I did get about a year off and it’s something I experienced when I sold emusic universal and took a little time off after the vivendi thing you know there. It took me about forty days to get bored and that was the sign for me that I need to be doing something and I wanted to get to that place again. Because especially you know you run a high skilled saas business and you run a competitive bidding environment I had plenty of stress to like let go of and so you know that year was really me going. Ok when I wake up board. It’s not time. Um and during that year you know a lot of ah. Acquiring my new boat getting it in the right condition also ended up getting my captain’s license during that time so was doing a few things from the sort of hobby perspective that I didn’t get to do when I was you know so busy running day-to-day but it was really going I know I got one more in me and I want to do something important and it was you know very clear to me as soon as I started thinking about It’s time to go back. Well dove. Of course it’s cryptocurrency. But you know when I looked at the market I saw 2 big problems I saw you know bitcoin being almost perfect but using way more electricity, especially if you scale it up than we want and ethereum. An interesting attempt at smart contracting. But you know we see like the north koreans still a billion dollars last year and so it’s just not ready for primetime and so when I heard Bram Cohen who had gotten to know through our mutual venture backers in in 2010 s if you will and had a bunch of friends and common back in the cipher punk era. Ah.

Gene Hoffman: When I heard he had a solution potentially to bitcoin’s energy use I was like do we got to talk I ended up being the first or second meeting the then cofounders took the other guy was naval. So I’ve been with the company since inception I ended up going full time.

Alejandro Cremades: So then what happened.

Gene Hoffman: Approximately four years ago and you know officially became Ceo beginning this year but had been doing the role for a good eighteen twenty four months

Alejandro Cremades: So for the people that are listening to really understand it What what are you guys doing.

Gene Hoffman: So we have built a much better Blockchain. It is as secure as bitcoin. It’s very much in the bitcoin style a lot of bitcoin is exactly right? But we’ve then added a real smart contracting environment to it and that smart contracting environment is highly secure. It’s certainly a little bit harder to develop. So it’s not as easy to use as a developer as ethereum is but that’s because when you’re done it audits you can absolutely reason about what’s going to happen and so you can put you know billions to trillions of dollars on that chain and have it be used with real money. Um, and in fact, already the world bank and the ifc the Repoca Singapore and ia have all partnered with us to go deliver the article 6.2 of the Paris agreement is the voluntary carbon markets. You know, really leveraging what a blockchain does well which is builds trust in information and then let’s see great markets on top of that.

Alejandro Cremades: So now I guess saying there’s a lot thing going on right now. No like on the macro environment. You know also with the banks going belly up. Ah you have also the former cto of Coinbase. Saying that in the next day three months we’re seeing bitcoin going all the way up to a million which you know this point seems kind of crazy having bitcoin at 27000. How do you think that all of like because at the know the day crypto you know to certain degree was built. You know as a response to what we saw in a weight. So How do you think we’re going to see this space behaving now that we’re starting to really you know be in the middle of like shaky waters.

Gene Hoffman: Well, you know I think the last couple weeks outlined two very important things. There is a real reason why bitcoin was built and that real reason is still really valid I mean I joked on Twitter that you know no coiners always tell me that the western financial system is safe. And it’s kind of like I don’t hear that message in the last two weeks because it’s not exactly safe fractional reserve banking has always had these issues. Ah this time around everybody had an option you know in 2008 when I was running vndicia I wasn’t sure whether the money I had raised you know, only like eighteen months before was actually going to be there in the bank the next morning. Ah, this time around we were svb customer but we had 85% of our cash not at svb and I’ve got like a month plus in bitcoin self-custody of our payroll as well. So you know we had choices. Um I do think we’re war to see a major shakeout and it’s time. There’s a lot of projects that. Ah, sold illegal securities or or in over their heads and they’re all like they’re decentralized in name only you know 2 people control a thing you think is a blockchain that’s not what the point was and so I do think you’re going to see the scc and others be very aggressive finally in going through and cleaning house. But once that’s done. There are real technologies here you know, bitcoin’s real. You know ethereum somewhere in between but it is real I mean there’s a market for it. Monero Zcash these are the kinds of things chia that are going to make through this kind of regulatory gauntlet and it’s because if you’re doing this right? The 2 worlds can interoperate. You know the.

Gene Hoffman: Kind of base layer of bitcoin or chia is going to have the kind of I don’t know permissionlessness and pseudonymity and volatility that we’ve always seen but then folks like Vera and gold standard can issue carbon on top of it and it’s going to have any carbon market riding on top and it’s going to have the dynamics of that asset. You know this is where things like circles stablecoins come in too. So I think you’re going to start seeing blockchains be used as money and money adjacent kind of rails for all sorts of finance.

Alejandro Cremades: So can you talk to us as as well about the global use cases for blockchain.

Gene Hoffman: So one of the earliest ones is what I was talking about with the voluntary carbon markets. So ah Singapore I ea in the world bank launched the climate action data trust which runs on top of the chia blockchain what this is is as edgar is to kind of securities and debt markets. This is to ah voluntary carbon markets. So all of the registries vera gold standard the government of Japan the governor uk will all have um ah a table in this database to meta-reistry and so today when you go register it vera vera doesn’t know if you’ve registered somewhere else by summer. 1 of the first things era will do is check this meta registry to make sure that acreage at that time doesn’t already exist and so all of a sudden now you have a way between the nations and the volunteeruntary registries to at least make sure that you know this carbon offset was created once it was sold to However, it was sold. It was retired once and you can trace that on chain. Ah, and then on top of that we’re tokenizing carbon with the iffc. So we’re taking high quality nature-based carbon registering it in that process and then making it available so that folks like Exxon and meta can just buy in a market commodity carbon by being able to most audit underneath. You know what projects are in here and then when they’re done have a full audit trail that shows it. Retiring on chain then retiring down the climate action data trust that you can actually track and see exactly what they bought in public in an audible way. We’ve raised about $80000000 to date.

Alejandro Cremades: Now for you guys. How much capital have you guys raised today and obviously you’ve raised quite a bit you’ve done multiple companies. Why did you bring the investors that you did.

Gene Hoffman: So We again, we’re looking for true venture-backed investors high growth major technology changes I mean this is fundamentally a technology Company. We’re a software company and so you wanted to have folks who both understood that and believed that blockchains were as transformative as we believed them to be so that was very much how I kind of looked At. You know who made sense and who we approached.

Alejandro Cremades: Was it like already people you had an existing relationship with or or was it like new people because obviously there’s a new segment too and you’ve been you know in the venture space for quite a while. So. Was that process of making sure that then that you were able to tap in into the right people with that layer of social proof first.

Gene Hoffman: So I would say that about half and half and what I mean by that is about half of the kind of core drivers where people either had existing relationships with and wanted to work with before um or you know were tangentiously involved in various projects I was involved in the rest were often that next layer out in social network where people be like oh yeah, this is interesting. You should also talk to. And you know that that is very much how many of our rounds came together. It was you know that kind of you know these the folks we know are supportive and therefore these other folks you should be talking to too.

Alejandro Cremades: And I would say vision is something that you shared with them. So to that note, if you were to go to sleep tonight gene and the um, let’s say you wake up in a world where the vision of Chia Network is fully realized.

Gene Hoffman: The funny part about that statement is is that the company’s been distributed to shareholders for a lot of value. There’s a foundation that runs on like the linux foundation to keep the core developers going and this thing is fully and totally decentralized. But we’re not there yet First you’ve got to have the ability to really continue to finance development.

Alejandro Cremades: What does that world look like yes.

Gene Hoffman: To you know, walk through the regulatory environment and you know it’s our intention to be a public company which we think is the 1 right way to make sure that investors get the right disclosures and controls and then ultimately that we distribute this value out to the shareholder base right. So ah, you know we definitely took a different path than a lot of crypto companies did but we took a path because we understood how the regulatory environment worked and how we could fit in and make that work for the ultimate goals because the real goal of Chia is ultimately to be a public good that is the you know data trust layer. And the transaction and finance capability layer that the internet has lacked and in doing that you want to be more like linux. Ultimately where there’s no one person that anybody looks at you know Bram is a bit leanus-like but even Linus is thought started to be less important to linux. Um, and so that’s really the the ultimate vision is that you’ve got this extremely secure. Open source rich capability infrastructure that everybody uses.

Alejandro Cremades: And you you you were talking just now about the the regulatory you know side of it. You were talking all the scc earlier What does regulatory hacking look like what what does that look like.

Gene Hoffman: So you know throughout my career I’ve had this interesting set of opportunities to really try to understand what the regulatory regimes were and how to navigate them at Pgp at the time Pgp was still highly controlled for export. And so myself Bob Cohn and another person came up with the idea of publishing the pgp source code in a book and I was the ah most senior executive with the least to lose so it came to me to actually go export it. Ah I was the second person to ever be officially investigated for exporting crypto but it was understanding what the limitations of the law were you know. Exporting a book is totally first amendment protected activity and that was making it very clear that it was very hard for the government to say hey you can’t build software this way because software is at heart speech ah with music you know it’s an extremely complicated regulatory environment. It’s got one hundred and fifteen hundred and twenty years of really weird. Laws and rules. You know every song you hear on the radio has 2 copyrights. Most people have no idea that that’s how that works and so it was really looking at both. You know how do we better serve actual customers so that they’ll pay and how do we navigate. However, you know the the legal situation because of course. Time you know, Napster and others were just like let’s just rip it all off and we weren’t no, let’s go license this get real real rights to this and actually go out and do it and then here with cryptocurrencies and blockchains. There’s a real problem about how do you finance development and in fact, bitcoin kind of shows some know creakiness on this issue.

Gene Hoffman: Ah, you know because there’s no limited liability entity. That means that the the fake Satoshi has been causing trouble by suing a bunch of developers and that there’s no real way. The developers necessarily get paid that you don’t kind of have a better ongoing advancement there and so you know we looked at the regulatory environment and we went. Okay there’s no reason you can’t follow securities laws. And engaged early on with the scc and have come up with a very different way to ultimately get to the same place but we think the way to do that is to not throw out like 400 years of the joint stock corporation just because we can instead. Let’s use that let’s use the you know, kind of Playbook we all know of building a tech software company. That ultimately becomes a public company and then ultimately at the end distributes itself out to the shareholder base and kind of you know, steps steps away after everybody’s made their returns and their rewards.

Alejandro Cremades: So we’re talking about vision. We’re talking about future earlier. Let’s talk about the past but doing it with a lynch of reflection if I could put you into a time machine and bring you back in time back in time to that point where you were still maybe in. North Carolina they are going after your studies and perhaps you know you were wondering hey you know I want to do something on my own imagine if you had the opportunity of going back in time and having a chat with that younger gene and being able to give that younger gene 1 piece of advice before launching a business. What would that be and why given what you know now.

Gene Hoffman: So ah, my answer here is kind of odd but I think it’s important and that is like personal therapy is the thing I would most recommend um I had this interesting moment at at Vsa you know in the valley companies usually had like a 5 ive-year lifetime you know you you did not necessarily hang around with these things very long but Sas changed that the the way the model worked you, you were much longer and so you kind of got year 5 or 6 and realized there were a bunch of old company things you had to put in place like career development and when I kind of looked around. We did different things for different people on the executive team but it kind of all looked back at me and went. What are you going to do and you know I’ve been kind of a natural born leader. But what it really became clear to me is like you know if I could be even more comfortable. My own skin I would be even better leader and I wish I’d had that realization sooner. You know I would have been. That much more effective in all of the various inputs because I was less anxious about things and you know understood what drove me or you know why I might be mad about something like just kind of understanding yourself emotionally is underrated to be able to be the guy who says in the room when you’re talking to somebody like I had this moment. My entire team. Is talking to these people and they were charlatans and I didn’t understand them nobody else understood them but nobody wanted to ask and I I find that place in my career where it’s like this may be a dumb question but I don’t understand at all what you’re saying and I could see the wave of relief across my team because nobody wanted to be the one who looked stupid but you know.

Alejandro Cremades: So.

Gene Hoffman: Being in a place where you don’t care anymore about that I think is the the sooner you can get to that as a person the better.

Alejandro Cremades: I Love that So gene for the people that are that are listening that will love to reach out and say hi. What is the best way for them to do so. So.

Gene Hoffman: I’m at Hoffmanjee on Twitter that’s probably the absolute best way to get me I’m pretty present present there. So.

Alejandro Cremades: Amazing! Well gene thank you so much for being on the deal maker show today. It has been an honor to have you with us.

Gene Hoffman: Um, thank y’ll, How do I having me on.

* * *
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Neil Patel

I hope you enjoy reading this blog post.

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