It's my two year anniversary since I quit the big company job to become an entrepreneur. By the way, here is how much the big company used to pay me before I left: a $310k base salary. About $275k in equity vesting each year. A 35% cash bonus on top. And at the time all that was just for showing up & meeting expectations. And if I exceeded expectations, there was an additional ~25% boost to it all, and exceeding wasn't that hard most years. So, ~$700k for just showing up, but potentially more for exceeding.
Congrats Louie! Really enjoyed this post and hearing about your Small Bets role. Incredible.
One thing I've been thinking a lot about is value as a whole.
It's normally exchanged with money. But value exchange as a whole can be a blend of different activities. When you're not exchanging most of your value with one company, things get blurry, and it's not as straightforward when others exchange it so precisely.
Value exchange becomes more interesting when your family is extracting more value from you early in the day as opposed to when you're tired at night. You might be getting more value from your work activities by not being interrupted by a meeting during creative focus.
Simoly, these relationships start to double or triple in value overall, and pricing your life can't only be tied with time spent at one company anymore. Though your life has overall become more valuable.
Cool to see you recognize the value of these smaller activities, becuase they all add up. Right there with you.
"I got to walk my kids to school any day I wanted. And I got to pick them up any day I wanted too. I got to walk out of my garage office and hang out with my kids in the middle of the day in the summer."
The true wealth of self-employment.
Failing with the original dream but still making a lot of money is a classy way to fail. Big congrats on this!
I didn't know we were both in the arena for two years. Exactly two years ago, I decided to gradually reduce my consulting hours and build some kind of media business in my remaining time by September 2023.
I failed pretty badly.
September came, but I've got nothing. I made about ~$1,5k in total. $300 with info products and the rest from sponsored content. Well, at least I have something to write about!
Congrats on your milestone, Louie!
Super inspiring journey you've had.
Thanks for all your work around Small Bets and helping me get started with my own newsletter.
Here's to another year of you killing it in the arena!
Congrats on two years “in the arena,” Louie! Some great gems of wisdom in here.
Hi Louie. Thanks for your post and your honesty. I think that fact that you’re the happiest you’ve been for years tells you the answer despite the non linear nature of the entrepreneurial journal. Whilst your monthly revenue might not be what you hoped (yet), you’re increasing your cockroach quotient (as Daniel would say) all the time, and let’s face it - that wouldn’t have moved off zero at your previous gig. I especially liked the line ‘. So what good are more rental properties to hand down to these kids if Daddy is never around when they’re little?’ We pass this way once ....
You’ve also figured out a meaningful definition of success! You’re totally right about focusing more on walking your kids to school then leaving them a rental property.
Bravo 👏 - A million times for this statement: "So what good are more rental properties to hand down to these kids if Daddy is never around when they’re little?". I couldn't have put it better myself. What good is the money you pass on to your kids if you don't pass your values and good memories of yourself to them.
Inspiring as always, Louie!
My biggest fear I might face is seeing my startup not working out for too long and forcing myself to get a job I might not like.