As you can see from this preschool picture, I was the kid who liked to go against the grain and, sometimes, corrupt others (sorry, Brian). I was the kid who took the nuns at my Catholic school to task when they told me that pets didn’t go to Heaven. I was the kid in Cleveland rooting for John Elway and the Denver Broncos. So naturally, when I finished high school, "far away" was the most important criteria for where I wanted to attend college. California seemed to fit the bill.
Graduating in Silicon Valley during the late 90s put me right in the middle of the internet boom. By happenstance more than design, I stepped into a world that hooked me instantly -- tech startups. I was able to work on cool things with really smart people. The outcome of my work was limited only by my ability to learn. The impact of my work was always evident.
For the next ten years, I followed one challenge after another -- building products and teams, expanding into new markets, participating in colossal failures and celebrating the occasional win. Along the way, I pieced together the ingredients necessary to build sustainable, successful companies. I learned that it’s meaningful work that drives people to the highest levels of performance. I observed that meaningful work takes place when you bring together incredible people and align them around a huge goal that matters. It became clear to me that the companies that provide opportunities for meaningful work attract the best people who, in turn, did their best work. It's a beautiful, self-fulfilling cycle.
At Drive Capital, I found my meaningful work. I get to work with stunning partners on a mission to build the most successful venture fund on the planet, and our work matters. In my opinion, few things matter more than connecting talent to opportunities for their meaningful work.
It sometimes takes a while to find work that we consider meaningful. It did for me. It also brought me back home, and I’m grateful for that as well. Go Broncos.