I don't have a fairy tale story to tell (yet)...
I want to talk about the path I decided to take to succeed in this world. I want to use social media to build my brand and share what I know.
I am a Portuguese, French, Canadian citizen now living in the UK. I am product manager and also the founder of ReponseIO, a social media marketer tool to enhance and grow your brand.
Let’s start from the beginning.
Not fitting in the success pattern?
I am not a dropout from school. I didn’t sell any companies when I was younger. I didn’t make any money on the side when I was at school. I didn’t have any charisma or any particular skill, except my memory and listening abilities.
I found it boring but I always succeeded with little or no effort.
School is not a challenge if you know how to navigate it.
I always felt bad and not good enough to share my experience. When you hear the fairy tales, people that succeed/have succeeded started their first business at 12, made 2 million at 14, were coders at 8, hacked the pentagon and I don’t know what else...
You have/had to be all out, live and sleep for your business, almost have no passion, eat, sleep for your business. And it’s weird because I don’t believe in that.
My parents were not entrepreneurs, the only amazing thing that they did in their life (and I think it was extremely courageous and insane at that time) was fleeing from portugal to live in France in their twenties while not speaking the language and not knowing anyone…
Communication at that time was predominantly by mail in Portugal. It was really poor and mostly rural. TV and phone in the different villages only arrived in the 60s. It was shared in the main cafe of the village. It was such an advance at that time.
My father told me those stories from when he was younger and he saw his first tv show at the village cafe. He also told me the stories about Salazar and what life was like under a dictator...
Fleeing was not a choice, it was one of the only option.
They made a huge gamble though and gave a lot of money to come to France. Nobody was waiting for them, nobody really wanting them but they made it. They were example citizens as they were taught by their government. Portuguese people consider work as honorific. They would really devote themselves for their boss.
Their journey was amazing and they raised us the best way they could. When I see my sister and myself, I can say that they did a good job.
The fact is I didn’t have someone around me who I could look up to as an example of an entrepreneurial mind. I only inherited the ambition of my mom...
On my dad side, he always used to say they were two types of intelligence: “Smart people who thinks everything is in books and the intelligence of life which requires you to have more common sense”.
I still believe in those principals although I don’t believe as he did that knowledge in books is useless. My mom believed you could be smarter and believe more in the future...
My beliefs, my principles, my game!
Being a son of Portuguese immigrants is not easy but it's not the worst thing. We are still “white” so I am not going to say, “Damn, that was hard...”
Also I was raised in France, so unlike my parents I had perfect French. I didn't really belong anywhere though. I didn’t belong in the country where I was raised because you are reminded each day by your teachers, the society that you are Portuguese (also by my father in my case).
And I was not really Portuguese ever because I didn’t know anything about their life except going there for 3-4 months per year.
We all have the same chances right?
I noticed something in life though, everything is rigged. From the moment you start your life, until you end it.
Everything is determined by your location and country you live in, your social class, your natural intelligence, the people you are exposed to, your family, society rules and norms...
All those things shape us, refine us and decide our future.
Nobody taught me that. Nobody wants to tell you:
“Look guys there are secret rules. Everything is almost decided for your and it is going to be a challenge if you don't accept it...”
The funny thing, is if you have enough will and guts to do it, you can beat the odds and access another level, be where nobody expects you.
Everything is rigged, but you don't have to accept it!
I decided to break those rules. I decided to change the game. It was my life and I wanted to be in control.
My mom wanted more but she was never able to access it. There is a part of me that wants to take revenge for her.
I remember everyday where I belong, where I came from and this is what forged me, those challenges and adversity.
Good thing, I was not alone...
During my travel I met other people like me who wanted more, who wanted something else.
They wanted to earn more money, they wanted to have a better life than their parents, they wanted to beat the odds and beat the society they were in.
I am thinking about Cedric, Jeff, Hicham and Clement.
Is it an easy path? No it’s not. Is there a recipe for success? No there isn’t. You can ask my friends about their own lives.
I dont believe in american fairy tales. But they are the champion of marketing!
I guess I don't believe in all those stories (generally American) that when you hear them you feel at the same time “Inspired & Ashamed”. Inspired because all those guys did some crazy things in such a short period of time.
And at the same time, ashamed, because you are reflecting on your own life.
Don’t be ashamed, be proud!
I think (just an observation from comments on social media) that our society has this problem.
Right now, everyone see the success and nobody sees the journey. The journey is not just the events that bring you there. It’s not just the story that you are confronted with.
I am talking about the climbing. The climbing is different for everyone and you have to take into account every parameter. We don’t have the same climbing to do. We don’t have the same investment to make. You start from point A to arrive at point B. There is diversity in our society and I love that. It makes our world more interesting.
Look at the context, look at everything. I always do that to analyze a situation, when I am too emotional about something, I try to take some steps back.
I have every right to do so and so do you. It’s your life like it is mine. I am not going to excuse myself because I decided to go party and drink whisky instead of thinking of a business. I am not going to apologize because I had friends and I had fun.
I decided to start to be an entrepreneur a few years ago. Because I said to myself, maybe you too can do it, maybe I had the capability. And since I arrived in London, my life took a different path. And I want to share my reflection with you.
This is what I live in my everyday life, my challenges and my thoughts as a product manager and founder in London. I will share my opinion on different things and if it can help you that’s great.
If you don’t agree, just comment below. If you like it, please recommend it. You can also subscribe to our newsletter on the right of the screen.
If you want to discuss, I will love that. If you don’t agree, that’s even better, let's challenge each other! I would love to meet you and discuss about your product or what you want for yourself as a product manager.