Don't Have A Million, But Want to Invest in Cannabis?


Don't Have A Million, But Want to Invest in Cannabis?

Don't Have A Million, But Want to Invest in Cannabis?

Here's my take on it.

From an excerpt with Green Entrepreneur (full article here).

Get our detailed investor check list click here.

Let’s get to the million dollar question, which is: I don’t have a million dollars, but I want to invest in this business. Where do I start?

First my advice is always that you should go to the experts, that's why I came to Cresco Capital Partners. I wanted to invest along private equity and venture capital experts so I could learn from their 10,000 hours instead of having to do my own.

Say you've already done that. Then you need to get your seat at the deal-making table. Then you start to get deals and access into the space that outstrips your network. One of the first secrets is, wealth is made on the private side. If you look at anybody who has accumulated wealth – not just rich, but real wealth – it’s because they’ve done investing either on real estate or in their own company on the private side. That’s just the “why” of this even mattering.

Explain that a little bit to me. On the private side, meaning they’re not public companies that they invest in?

It’s very hard to make generational wealth or real wealth by investing in public stock markets. Outpace inflation, definitely, but replace your income? That's tough. You can see that very quickly. Say you put all the faces from the Forbes 100 list of billionaires on one page. What you would notice if you went through all their bios? Not a single one of them made their money from smartly investing in public stocks.

The brilliant Warren Buffett, Carl Icahn, they only move when they have three things...

The best investors like Warren Buffett, Carl Icahn, etc they only move when they have three things:

  1. The first one is an unfair advantage. For instance, Carl is an activist . He can go bother the founders of the company until they make changes to the actual company and make him money. So you need an unfair advantage in some way.

  2. The second thing that you need is intimate knowledge. Not insider knowledge. You can’t have anything illegal. But you need intimate knowledge of the industry, the company, whatever you’re investing in. You really can’t get that with public stocks because otherwise it would be insider information and you have to be incredibly careful to be ethical and law abiding. On the private side you can have financials, access to the actual founders, access to their actual distributors and request a financial colonoscopy for all intents and purposed. Essentially what you need is information beyond what the news and Jim Cramer could scream at you on CNBC. You need that.

  3. Then the third thing is the ability to affect the outcome. That’s how we invest on the private side because by giving them capital, we can talk to them about how they’re going to exit, who’s going to buy them, help them structure the exit on the backend, and the list goes on. When I invest I want to be more than money, I want to be a fulcrum they can place a lever on to lift more than their bodyweight.

Those three items are really key to investing. But we’re talking at a super high level. We’re not all going to have that on Day 1, but you should always have that in the back of your mind. That is the goal. It’s why I’m really worried about anybody who’s a price speculator.

What does price speculator that mean? Why does that worry you?

The crypto crisis, the housing crisis, the internet bubble, and then if we go way back to tulip mania, (which was where people were paying hundreds of dollars for a tulip bulb), it’s all the same thing. It’s all called price speculation, which basically means people invest in something just because they think the next guy is going to buy at a higher price and they’ll be able to sell after he gets in. But they don’t believe that there’s real value in what they’re investing in.

We’ve got to be careful about that. There’s a little bit of that in cannabis, so on the public side I’m really cautious about investing.

It seems out of whack right now on the public side of cannabis with the valuations of the underlying companies. 

You may be right, I don’t have a crystal ball. If I did, we’d be on my yacht while recording this podcast. But what is important on the public side, or any time valuations or the price of stocks is concerned, is to always be looking at the downside.

Does it make sense for the top 10 cannabis stocks to be worth 4x more than the top 10 biotech, tobacco, pharma, or healthcare stocks, from a price-to-sales perspective? Which just means the price that they’re worth versus how much they actually sell.

Does it make sense for the top 10 cannabis stocks to be worth 4x more than the top 10 biotech, tobacco, pharma, or healthcare stocks, from a price-to-sales perspective?

I don’t know. It’s a growth industry; it could be, but my instincts say probably not. The key to investing is always buy low, sell high, and train your brain on that. Focus on price first before excitement. That is how we avoid price speculating.

Say you want to get smart on cannabis investing in 30 days how do you do it?

Step One: Get Smart

You should be, in my opinion, not doing anything except getting smart. Listen to all the podcasts on Green Entrepreneur, and then go over to CannaInsider podcast, and then go and look at some of the investor intelligence reports like Cohen. Don’t spend a lifetime; do this in a weekend. You can binge-listen to a couple podcasts, binge-read all the investor intelligence on MJBiz or Green Entrepreneur or Cohen and in that span of time you will be more knowledgable than 90% of the populace on your subject matter.

Step Two: Get In The Game

If you want to invest, or if you want to do anything – you need to go where the game is played. Say you want to play baseball. The first thing that you should probably go do is watch a baseball game. Then you go try to play a baseball game amongst you and your friends. Then you try to figure out who are the reporters that cover baseball. Then you should probably try to go to three or four conferences of people who are talking about baseball, playing it, or selling baseball gear.

If you want to invest, or if you want to do anything – you need to go where the game is played.

It’s not dissimilar to investing. You go where the game is played. In cannabis, in my opinion, that would be places like ArcView, which is kind of like AngelList. AngelList is where you can go and invest in lots of different startups, but at very low dollar amounts in a quasi-crowd equity investing model. ArcView is similar but for cannabis, and they also have research and conferences to support. So you go to a couple ArcView conferences, and you join that insider circle.

Step Three: Meet the Players

Then you start reaching out to the insiders. Prior to an Arcview event you email all the speakers that are relevant. You setup a goal of 3-5 one on one meetings. You prepare with notes and background on the individuals and you try to stay in touch feeding them deals and ideas. These three steps are more than 99.9% of humans will take the time and effort to do. It is amazing how much success lies just over the other side of trying.

What is truly crazy is, after you do those three things – listen to a ton of podcasts, read as much as you can about the industry, and then get hooked up to an industry group and go to one of their conferences – you are smarter than 90% of the population on cannabis.

What’s the conversation you have with these people that you connect with in cannabis as a newcomer? Is that the moment when you present yourself, about who you are and what you have to offer?

First, if you go where the game is played because you want to be in the game, you will have opportunities presented to you that you never otherwise would.

First, if you go where the game is played because you want to be in the game, you will have opportunities presented to you that you never otherwise would.

That’s my promise to you. If you do these three things and you go to where the game is played with a curious mind and dig in, you’re going to have opportunities arise that you couldn't have planned yourself.

If you have that belief, then when you go, here are two things that are super important.

One is curiosity.

We’re all egoists, right? I like to have my ego stroked. But the truth is, if somebody comes up to me and says;

“Codie, I’ve been reading your stuff, listening to your podcast here, I saw you speak here, and I’m really curious as to what you meant in this sentence”

or “I’m really curious, what do you think about this?”

or “how would you enter this space?”

or “why did you do this particular move?”

– those small, tailored questions to somebody’s ego, showing that you’re truly curious, not wasting there time. It speaks volumes. If you do that to five or ten people, the likelihood is you have two to three to four who want to engage with you. So that’s where I’d start. Curiosity.

Second item is give before you take.

I just interviewed an analyst today for our firm. The way he came to me was similar to what we've just been speaking about. He reached out, said he had listened to a few of our thought pieces. But he did something different than saying, "Hire me."

He said, “I’ve been doing research and analysis on the space in grad school right now and did some models on vertically integrated companies...” -- which are companies like Acreage.

"... I did some research on a few of your portfolio companies and their competitors. Would that be useful to you?”

Of course that is interesting.

I looked at it. The models were actually really good, so I followed up with him and gave him a bit more work. Right now I’m looking at the lab testing space. Every time somebody wants to sell you cannabis, they’ve got to go take it to a third-party lab to see if it has any pesticides in it or if it is THC at the level that they say it is. I’m interested in that key portion of the industry. So I said, “Why don’t you try to apply your thought process to this lab space?” He did it, did a great job, and I’ll probably offer him a job.

So that second key is not what they can do for you, but what you can do for them. If you provide value to people who are in positions of power, that is so rare – so rare – that they are going to want you in their circle.

The moral of the story is this...

..investing is not only for the high and mighty.

New industries have opportunities that pervade them if you are curious, driven and give before you take.

Be one of the few who do, and you just may find another wealth driver for you.

Get our detailed investor check list click here.

Or read full Green Entrepreneur article here.

Codie A. Sanchez

Managing Director - Partner at Cresco CapitalPartners, LLC


Showdown: Cannabis vs Alcohol


Showdown: Cannabis vs Alcohol

Who will win? Cannabis vs Alcohol

This is the question haunting those at the top of Alcoholic Beverage companies around the world, and making investors increasingly interested in the new green crop.

As the total size of the market increases in Cannabis we can see why, our consumer base is growing while one could argue the alcohol industry's is shrinking.  


The interesting trend is not simply the total growth but also where that growth comes from. 


What do these images tell us? That as users of cannabis increases, alcohol consumption decreases. 

In fact (~60%) of monthly cannabis users surveyed all said cannabis has reduced their alcohol consumption, regardless of alcohol preference. While New Frontier Data found that nearly half (45%) of cannabis consumers who also drank expected to eventually replace at least some of their alcohol use with cannabis. For those who enjoyed the taste and traditions yet worried about the health effects of alcohol, a new profusion of non-alcoholic, cannabis-infused beer and wines are (where legally available) offering some intriguing potential replacements. Now this is interesting in and of itself as a tailwind that is going to fuel cannabis companies growth however as it becomes easier to access cannabis we see something interesting happening.


More users who had previously used cannabis before are now re-engaging. So we have two trends, first is that current cannabis users consume less alcohol (that affect seems to continue) and secondly as more cannabis users come online this trend may accelerate. 

What does this mean for us as cannabis investors?

  1. Large acquisitions of cannabis companies by Alcohol companies as we've already seen with Constellation brands amongst others.

  2. Alcohol companies creating their own cannabis and CBD beverages as Molson Coors is here.

  3. Increase in market share from Alcohol to Cannabis, which simply means more sales and thus more profits to us, theoretically.


That may be why 2018 looks to have been the worst year for beer sales in nearly a decade. 

As we look ahead with more medical and adult use cannabis markets coming online, cannabis is looking up and alcohol, well, alcohol needs to get creative to compete.

Ahead: Look for more acquisitions in alcohol and cannabis, more partnerships and more sales swaying away from wheat and into another plant. 

TOTD: “I will tell you how to become rich. Close the doors. Be fearful when others are greedy. Be greedy when others are fearful.
— Warren Buffett

This quote really sticks with me, it's what I remind myself when so many are concerned about this space. When there is no more concern about cannabis, when greed runs rampant, that is when we must be cautious.

I believe whole heartedly in what we are doing as a generational wealth creation event if we do this right.

That's why some of our biggest investors at CCP are former alcohol, CPG and beverage execs. Not all companies will be winners, far from it, but those who do this strategically just may be. 

Codie Sanchez

Cresco Capital Partners

Disclaimer: This report reflects the current opinion of the authors, aka me. It is based upon sources and data believed to be accurate and reliable. Opinions and forward looking statements expressed are subject to change without notice. This information does not constitute a solicitation or an offer to buy or sell any security. The fund is open only to accredited and qualified investors. And in investing you should always question everything.


Job Searching USE THIS: Get Hired for Your Dream Job


Job Searching USE THIS: Get Hired for Your Dream Job

Job Hunting Is The WORST…

Isn’t it?

It is a self-confidence crushing endeavor… like worse than Tinder dating.

Here’s why:

The average job posting gets over 250+ emails. Seriously. Isn’t that crazy? Not to mention recruiters get the first resume sent to them within 200 seconds. Oh, and remember Monster, well 427,000 of your fellow job seekers post their resumes weekly. Terrible odds if you ask me. 

BUT it doesn’t have to be. Let’s break this down.

Here’s what I realized:

I’ve moved through 6 jobs at 4 companies in ten years, growing my paycheck by around 50-100% with each move. BUT, it didn’t start that way. It never does for any of us. You see when I went after my first job out of college I went to 3 job fairs, sent an ungodly amount of cold emails, bothered all my parent’s friends and just a few weeks from graduating I was about to have some debt but no post-college job to pay for it. I was a chronic interviewee unable to close. So, there I was sending 20 emails a day and lucky to get a human to respond to one of them.

And then after repeating this process job search after job search, I started wondering…why was this whole finding a job thing so impossible?

Get hired, Find a job, dream job

Once I started to be out there publicly, writing in publications like Forbes and became an employer myself I started to receive email, after DM, after LinkedIn message all saying the same thing.

  • “All I want to do is work, please hire me.”

  • “All I want to do is use my skills, how can I get a job like yours?”

  • “All I want to do is get a job that actually pays, can I pick your brain over coffee?”

And right about when I was going to judge them for the grossness that is the imagery of picking someones brain I remembered something, I had sent all these exact same emails and DMs.

Every time I was doing a job search back in the day mass emailing out my resume, I was committing these same mistakes.

That intrigued me. And then I got my 472nd email asking about how to get a job or for me to jump on a phone call about it. Honestly - I got tired of hearing myself speak about searching and explaining the same process over and over again. BUT I loved seeing the light bulb go off in peoples eyes when they realized it wasn’t impossible it was just persistent. AND I got obsessed when I thought about a world in which every human was spending their talents in pursuit of exactly what they were born to do.

 So I wrote this guide for you. Let me tell you WHY you aren’t getting the kind of job you want, WHY recruiters aren’t responding to you… and then HOT TO FIX IT!

The problem is as I looked at all the emails I received it was like an eternal Groundhog Day, I realized…



So for my next hiring search I documented it all. Got all scientific. I gathered the over 123 emails I received in response to my post for one job and read through them all. I talked to all my other CEO friends who hire hundreds of people a year… Suddenly everything made sense.

You see, the resumes were all pretty qualified. The humans were all great I’m sure. But after reading hundreds of potential hires I fell asleep.

Then I figured out why:

EVERYONE’S emails looked EXACTLY like 99.9% of all the other emails job seekers sent to me. And it wasn’t just them when I looked back at my emails I did the same exact mistake:

You see even my old emails sounded and looked EXACTLY like 99% of all the other emails being sent for job searches.

Here’s a few sentences I used:

1)     A self-starter

2)     Hard worker with a great work ethic

3)     Proactive problem solver

4)     Meet client needs

5)     Dynamic communicator

6)     A fast learner

Let’s be honest with yourself, does your email do the same? BECAUSE…

Back to the rest of the emails in my inbox. It was like watching a military parade where you can’t pick out a single human from the mass. Almost every single email contained one of those lines. EVERY SINGLE EMAIL.

The reason you are not getting a job usually has nothing to do with your credentials or whether you were the best applicant.

It’s that via email, you are boring. ;)

You are boring because like most people, you’re terrible at selling yourself via email. We all are naturally. I WAS TOO. Since we don’t realize it we end up doing the same, boring, stale process for MONTHS until we are desperate for any job, anywhere and slowly spiraling into a depression.

After reading, writing, reviewing hundreds of successful job application emails I’ve mastered the game on the template AND THE PROCESS to get the job that you actually want, instead of the one you can get.

It’s so simple we’ve turned it into science…. This template below….

It will teach you how to communicate in an engaging, unique way so that the interviewing process becomes fun and you win!

All of a sudden you have options, and are the one getting recruited.

Let’s be real, if you are a terrible worker with a resume full of grammatical errors and zero follow-through this isn’t going to make you a millionaire, but it will help you:

  • Get real responses and interviews setup

  • Let your personality come into your writing

  • Give you an exact formula to follow for job searching outreach

  • Teach you my follow-up process that has landed multiple six figure plus jobs

  • Explain the psychology behind how this all works


When you click you’ll receive a document with all the below:

·        A tested and proven email/message template for getting noticed by recruiters

·        Tricks to get recruiters to follow-up with you and see what they search on you

·        A strategy for closing jobs that may even seem like they are out of your reach

·        Tactics to get recruiters seeing you like that purple cow among a bunch of black and whites

Once you have this template recruiters will start responding to your messages and will actually want to meet you… not to mention if you follow the guide they may actually start seeking you out. AKA – no more cold emails HOORAY!

 But here’s the catch. We humans unless we pay for something, we don’t value it.

That’s why we keep all those articles in our inbox that we know we should read but WE NEVER read them. SO, the catch is… you need to put your skin in the game. That’s why you got to pay for this one.

Why? Because I want you to actually use it, and we don’t use or value things that do not have value.

Here’s what it is going to do for you.

This template will save you TIME and MONEY. A LOT of it.

Saving you MONEY: The average unemployment period for an American is 20 weeks, that’s 5 months with no paycheck. Since on average we’ve found this process to cut down this hiring process to 30 days. We’re saving you $22k+ if you were paid the average salary in the US. That’s a lot of dinero.

Saving you TIME: Experts say it takes you a month for every $10k in your salary. Sweet lord that’s a lot of months. If you make $100k that means set aside 10, even while working, to find that next 6 figure salary. With this process you can cut your timeline in half.

Remember: Life is too short to live small. This is your chance to aggressively go after what you want in life and follow a proven method to do it.

PS: if these methods do not get you at least 100% more interviews and responses, then I’ll give you your money back.. no questions.  

Now go see what it’s like to LOVE what you do for a living and GET PAID while doing it!

And as always, ADELANTE!



Secrets to Financial Freedom: How to Speak Green


Secrets to Financial Freedom: How to Speak Green

Show Me The Money!

That’s what we hard working grinders want, isn’t it?

We don’t grind for countless hours, forego any semblance of a social life, and dedicate ourselves to our business simply for sainthood. Do we?

We do it because we want to build something in this world, to create a better life for ourselves and our families, and to reap the rewards of our sangre, sweat and tears. 

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And yet… I have to tell you, if you are a minority, a woman, a Latina like me, it ain’t easy, is it?

It’s like we’re in a race for our lives, but we began behind the starting line. Why? Because we weren’t taught as Latinos about finances, about investing, about cash flow, about IRR, or ROI or lines of credit. All we knew was:

  1. Don’t spend what you don’t have. 

  2. Keep some under the mattress for a rainy day (sometimes literally, eek). 

  3. And… “Niñita porque tu compras algo sin cupones??” Got it Nana, always use coupons. 

..When the next little Latina looks at the faces on CNBC she’ll look up and see a face that looks just a bit like her. After all — if I can, anyone can!
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While we may be frugal, financially free we are not.

That’s why I became obsessed with investing and financial freedom more than 10 years ago.

Before I built businesses and played with money for a living, I was a journalist working along the US/Mexico border. I knew nothing about mutual funds, 401ks (como?), ETFs or the like. And yet I saw millions of my fellow Latinos were getting left behind not because of their race, but because they didn’t have or understand money. The wealthy held all the power and we didn’t. So, I started climbing my way through finance so that when the next little Latina looks at the faces on CNBC she’ll look up and see a face that looks just a bit like her. After all — if I can, anyone can! (Related: Need More Capital? Get Funding for your Startup.)


But that isn’t enough — because we need change now. That’s why I went to an event by Northwestern Mutual for Latino’s sharing their road to financial freedom. I realized all over again that we Latinos still have much too far to go. 

Here, queridos, is what I would tell myself before I made my money, and what I still tell myself everyday…  

You’re only as good as who you know. 
  1. You make money earning, you keep money by investing.

This means three things:

  • Rule # 1 - you have to work to get wealth, you can’t expect the market to give it to you.

  • Rule #2 - always negotiate for a higher salary (we Latino’s don’t do that enough).

  • Rule #3 - invest before you spend.

Seek out firms known to support minorities and women.

2. You’re only as good as who you know. 

  • Make an advisory board. Just like a company does, leverage those smarter than you. The best part about this is there is no up-front payment for the good ones — they make money when you do. So for me this includes a tax accountant I trust, a financial advisor I trust, and an estate planner I trust. Seek out firms known to support minorities and women — that’s why I worked with Northwestern Mutual! They believe that you’re in control of your money and that your financial goals and planning should look like planning and more like living. #SpendLifeLiving.  For more information about planning your financial future visit,; find your local advisor here to schedule a consultation.

Related: Lessons from My Favorite Contrarian Entrepreneur

3. FREE is my favorite four letter word.

  • These days we have so much technology at our fingertips — even free technology. We Latinos just need to use it. 

  • I like Giving Docs for free wills where you can also donate.

  • I use an online budget tracker to keep me in check! 

  • I use the online tool from my financial advisor, like Northwestern Mutual offers here, to track my portfolios performance. 

Related: Make More Money: The One Thing You Should Do Right Now

4. Use Other People’s Money.

  • Your padres were right, don’t spend more than you have. But also, use OPM (other people’s money) when you can. Debit cards win me nothing. If I’m smart with credit, it can pay me back. For example I can use this to tell me where my $$ spent can equal miles flown to a new destination.  

5. The Best Investment: Go look in the mirror — oh there it is!

  • They say many things are common sense, but not common practice. Ain’t that the truth. The best investor is a curious and educated one. 

  • And last but not least, go out and meet more successful humans, more Latinos, hear their stories, and learn from their mistakes. If you want to check out Northwestern Mutual’s next Latino events

And as always, ADELANTE!


Northwestern Mutual is the marketing name for The Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company, Milwaukee, WI (NM) and its subsidiaries. Learn more at

**Sponsored Content**


6 Ways to Overcome Discomfort and Ask for What You Want

6 Ways to Overcome Discomfort and Ask for What You Want

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This is a reprint of the original article I wrote published by business collective here.

It’s tough to ask for what you want — but if you never ask, you’ll never receive.

As an entrepreneur, business builder and corporate ladder climber, I’ve had to get comfortable asking for what I want. It’s rarely given. The tough part is, as humans, we are typically uncomfortable not only in asking for what we want, but also how we ask for what we want. If I had a dime for every time I have been called aggressive, crazy, intense (or worse), I would have a lot of dimes. But I think about my personal motto:

Always ask for what you want. Always.
Screen Shot 2018-06-22 at 11.23.33 AM.png

About 7% of female MBAs attempt to negotiate vs. 57% of men.







  • Always ask for what you want. Always. 

You will hands down never get what you don’t ask for. This is especially true for women and people of minority backgrounds. There is much research that proves that we don’t negotiate enough. If we look at salaries alone, it’s imperative. In Linda Babcock’s book, Women Don’t Ask, she found that about 7% of female MBAs attempted to negotiate, compared to 57% of men from the same program.

  • Assume you might get it. 

When you remove the fear from your ask, you are more thoughtful, you consider how to make it a win-win, and you become less emotional.

Let’s discuss how you earn your seat at the table.


Practice Your Pitch

Nothing beats practice. Start small. A perfect example is my most recent trip to Belize: Every time I checked into a hotel, bought an excursion or paid for just about anything, I asked for a discount. What happened? Every single hotel (four over two weeks) upgraded us and gave us anywhere from a 10% to a 30% discount.

Never say, “I want more money.” This rubs me (and many people) the wrong way.

Don’t Come in Committed to an Outcome

Come with options, not outcomes. Instead of saying X amount, consider flex work, vacation, and/or a virtual assistant. Get creative with your asks.

Related:  Negotiate Like A Girl: Because You Can Get What You Want

Explain Why You Deserve It

Never say, “I want more money.” This rubs me (and many people) the wrong way. When an employee comes to me with this language, I immediately calculate the percentage change they are asking for and say, “What are you doing to earn 35% more money?” Rarely do they have an answer. Often, they didn’t even realize they were asking for such a big percentage increase. Back up your asks with facts and numbers. Say, “I did X, Y and Z and my plan for the coming months is to accomplish this and that. I think the work I am doing is worth more than I am currently making. So, I wanted to talk to you about a pay raise.” Then, don’t say anything. Your manager may be about to let you know you’re going to get a raise higher than your ask.

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Tell the why before asking for the what.


Put Yourself in Your Boss’ (Or Counterparty’s) Shoes

What are their goals, and how can you align yours with theirs? If you’ve ever been asked for a raise by an employee, you’d know that there is only so much you can do. How can you put yourself on the other side of the table? When I first negotiated to get time off for an MBA and had my first company out of school pay for it, I started with my small ask first and I aligned our goals.

Your manager may be about to let you know you’re going to get a raise higher than your ask.

I said, “I’m committed to having a long career here and believe I need to better my skills in international business for us to really succeed, so I want to go back to school while working. If I can find a way to do that won’t interfere with getting my job done, and I promise to beat out my goals every single quarter or I’ll quit school, would you be open to it?” He said yes. Then I came back once I got in and said, “If I can get Georgetown to cover X percentage of the cost and beat sales goals by X, would you sponsor me for the rest of my schooling?” He said yes. I was planning on offering a longer contract with the firm as well but I held back. He said “yes” to all my asks.

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Don’t Make the First Move

Making your “opponent” like you is worth its weight in gold. Smile, cajole, and appeal to their better instincts. My go-to line is, “You can’t blame a girl for asking, can you?”

Related: Don't Be Afraid to Ask for What You Want

If you are negotiating a salary or package with a new gig and the person asks you what you make currently, you don’t need to answer. You can say, “’Well, I’m flexible depending on how you structure compensation for the growth potential and the right company fit long term. Would you be willing to share the rough salary range you have in mind for this position?” If they push you, say, “This is really not something I give out broadly. Kind of like a woman never tells her age. Why don’t you tell me what your range is and I’ll let you know if that fits my range.”

Confidence is everything.

Confidence is everything.

Play Hard to Get

The one who wants it less wins. So even if you want a new job, client or raise so badly you would sell out your mother, pretend you don’t. Say you have a job offer you’re dying to take, and are about to quit your current job anyway. Reframe your mindset. They must negotiate to get the best deal for their company and you must negotiate the best deal for you. You can say, “I’m really happy in my current role and growing immensely. I’m always open to the right opportunity at the right company, but I’m not actively looking.” Remember playing hard to get? In my experience, this increases your perceived value, and makes them want you more.

Remember the commandments and you just might always get what you want.


Codie - Let's chat on instagram @codiesanchez

Active Duty to Corporate Titan: Get What You Deserve, When You Get Out

Active Duty to Corporate Titan: Get What You Deserve, When You Get Out

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The more I know of the military, the more I want to hire them.



Team work.


Persistence through difficulty.


That's a winning skill set. And yet, US Military.. you're not very good (AT ALL) at helping your members transition. They serve for us, maybe we should serve them a bit better.

So, here's what I would do if I was talking to my loved ones about getting out and moving on up that corporate ladder.... (Honestly - if you're not military you need to read this too).

Transitioning from the military to civilian life IS tough. The two worlds have minimal overlap. As both a hirer of vets and a family member of one, I’ve seen it go incredibly well, with transitioning service members landing high six figure jobs that double their military income, in the field of their choice...

BUT I’ve also watched former soldiers, sailors, and airmen be taken advantage of and miss out on much opportunity.



It's in your nature as military to be humble, team oriented, focused on the we not the self, and guess what? In corporate America, unfortunately, that isn't the same creed. In fact in a new job negotiation if you don't ask for it, you probably won't get it.

So here's my top three to-do's for every service member when it’s time to trade in the camouflage.


Get An Education - If you can, use your GI Bill. Use every cent of it. Ideally I would try to go to school WHILE you are active duty. You earned it and it will teach you the language of business.

Think about it like this, have you ever been in Mexico and negotiated to buy a souvenir in your broken Spanish? Have you ever thought, man I am getting the gringo price? As a Latina - I'll tell you, you are. Why? Because they know you don't understand it's true worth, you don't know how to play the game. You don't speak their language. It's the same with business. You don't know (yet) about variable comp plans, vested equity, negotiating vacation, % matching on 401ks, VP vs SVP vs Director vs MD, guarantees etc. That's ok. Go to school and you'll speak the language, which means you will get a better deal. Always.


Start Looking Early - The military is unlike corporations, in the military almost everyone eventually is assumed to 'get out.' Thus, it's ok to start looking for new options early, in fact, it's crucial. The literal worst thing you can do is get out of the military without options. You lose the high ground. When you are still in, you don't have to worry about a paycheck so you can be patient, waiting for the exact right moment to pull the trigger as opposed to making a panicked emotional decision.


Play the Field - When you start looking, you may be tempted to say yes to the first thing that comes along. Defense contractor reaches out, give you a good enough opportunity, it's easy. Why not take it? Here's the problem, you have no idea what else is out there. This is your best shot to make a great transition, maybe a pivot, maybe a complete career change don't pigeon hole yourself.

(Sidenote: Defense contractors make an obscene amount of money, I would negotiate your salary LIKE CRAZY with them).

Play the slow game.

Any company that truly wants you now is going to want you later.

So make yourself go through the thought process of what would you do if you could do anything? Sit, drink a beer on your porch, ruminate on that. Write down all the things that interest you. Then go to your LinkedIn and search people in those spaces, reach out. Then go to your friends who have gotten out ask them if they know anyone in that industry.



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Leverage Your Crew: I've realized the military is similar to a fraternity or a college sports team, you guys stick together. That means when you are considering leaving reach out to former military people first. They LOVE telling you the inside secrets just about as much as they love hiring fellow veterans.

Make it a game, and scroll through your LinkedIn noting all your former contacts and what they are doing today. Reach out to at least 10 of them to grab a coffee or a VTC. Then do one more thing, go to that dream job list of yours and reach out to two to three of those humans who have jobs you could only dream about. Ping them. See what happens. Then email me to tell me what happened. #yourewelcome


First Offer Is Never Final Offer - You followed the rules, you got THE JOB you want. Now you have the offer. Remember - Any job offer negotiation is kind of like how you text your friends to come out one night and they say;

"No I can't."

"No I better not."

"No I probably shouldn't."

And finally.. "ok where am I meeting you?"

Same with a job offer, it's the start of a conversation. It's not a final mandate. Never accept an employers first offer. Always negotiate. There is ALWAYS wiggle room. And the worst thing that can happen is they say no that's a final offer. Think of it this way, picture them chuckling at you because you didn't negotiate instead of assuming they'll think it's disrespectful you did negotiate. (Here's how I negotiate: --> click here).


EXTRA BONUS POINTS: These tools are here for you. Why not use?

Sometimes it's best to keep it stupid simple.. aka LinkedIn.

TOOL 1:LinkedIn <>


LinkedIn is the Facebook of business professionals around the world. If you don’t have an up to date profile (or a profile at all), your first step should be making your LinkedIn page shine like your Formal Dress shoes. And remember, only about 3% of the population has served in the military, so most recruiters and hiring managers won’t know what you’re talking about if you write using military jargon like “promoted to E8” or “served as battery commander.” You’ll need to translate your experience into business language, while at the same time talking up your experience as much as you can without being dishonest (when it comes to finding a job, you are your best advocate; this isn’t time to be modest).

LinkedIn is the Facebook of business professionals around the world.

Now that your profile is all spiffed up. Remember, there are two ways to learn, by spending years doing it or by listening to those who have spent years doing it.

Then you learn in half the time.

Use LinkedIn to expand your network.


TOOL 2. Veterati <>

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Veterati is a free mentoring platform for service members, veterans, and their spouses. What I love about this site is that it connects you directly with someone who is an expert in their field, and who cares enough to volunteer their time to help you find a job.

"Learn by listening to those who have spent years doing."

Once you fill out a short profile, Veterati will suggest several mentors who might be a good fit for you. You can read their bios, and then schedule a phone call based on their availability. After that, it’s up to whatever the two of you want to talk about, and how they can best help you find a job. Often that includes resume reviews, personal introductions to some of their industry connections, and mock interviews.

Take advantage of the resources that only you have access to as veterans.


TOOL 3: Hiring Our Heroes Corporate Fellowship <>

The Hiring Our Heroes (HOH) Corporate Fellowship program is one of the best kept secrets of military transitioning. With programs at bases across the United States, HOH is a partnership between the military, industry-leading corporations, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce that provides a competitive 12 week fellowship during your last months of service. Corporate partners vary each year, and include top companies like Boeing, Amazon Corporate, and Point B Consulting. Many companies report a 95% hire rate after the fellowship is complete, but the application process for HOH is competitive. Prepare.

You served, now is your time to reap.

Remember, don’t compromise. You have served your country well, built leadership and technical skills, and now, you’re on the path to an incredible civilian career. You’ll be surprised at how quickly you learn this new language of business. And in fact, you just may take it over.

Codie Sanchez

--> Stay in touch- Click here <>

Twitter <> - Facebook <> - Instagram <> - LinkedIn <>




Need More Capital? Get Funding For Your Startup

Need More Capital? Get Funding For Your Startup


You have a seed inside...

Waiting for you to water it. 

This is a reprint from my article here.

Inside each of us is the seed of an idea just waiting for us to water it.

You have such an idea in you — that business or startup that the world must experience. You’ve mocked out the plans, come up with the name, branding and website. Everyone loves it. But do you know how to fund it? It turns out seed watering isn’t cheap.

Self-funding your business will force you to be more strategic.

Have you seen the before-and-after Jeff Bezos meme? He’s not superhuman. He’s super “human.” We all are. We all start in a garage (Jobs), in a dark dimly lit office (Bezos), in our parents’ basement (Branson). The key is simply to start. So whether you’re trying to jumpstart your business or you need to boost the capital to take it to the next level, here are five ways we’ve seen hundreds of founders begin their ascent to the long mountaintop of entrepreneurship.

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He's not superhuman. 

He's super "human."


Self-Fund Or Bootstrapping

If you aren’t invested in you, who will be? Self-funding your business will force you to be more strategic. The main goal here is growth, which is typically cash flow, reach, users or client acquisition. Make sure that you’re generating a consistent stream of revenue or adding new clients before you start experimenting with other ways to grow. I’ve built most businesses by re-investing in them. Make a little money, hire a marketer, make a little more money, increase your Google AdWords spend, make a little more and bet on your business.

The key is simply to start. So whether you’re trying to jumpstart your business or you need to boost the capital to take it to the next level.

If you aren't invested in you...

Who will be?

Incubators And Accelerator Programs

If you choose to go with either an incubator and/or accelerator program, make sure that you have a viable product first.

Incubators will help you along in the early stages of your business … for a fee. You can look at an investment like this as a type of business school that provides a myriad of resources, such as office space, legal counseling — not to mention more money to help get your business off the ground. To get this money, investors need to believe your idea or product has enough juice for them to help nurture and grow. In my experience, the top tier incubators are absolutely worth it. The lower tier are absolutely not.

Once you’re up and running, you have to keep that momentum going. Some join an accelerator program once they’ve successfully launched their businesses. These programs typically last from three to six months. So if that’s the route you’ve decided to take, take advantage of the resources and funding to get the most out of your mentoring experience.

Related: How Selling Hot Dogs Let to Funding from Silicon Valley's Who's Who

Investors need to believe your idea or product has enough juice for them to help nurture and grow.
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Not all accelerators or incubators are created equal.

You’re not required to take an incubator program first, but getting into an accelerated program prematurely with an underdeveloped business will be a waste. It’s unlikely that investors will take a risk on a company with no clear direction.

Disclaimer: Question everything, including me. Not all accelerators or incubators are created equal. Do your homework first.






Sell Your Product Using Pre-Orders

Don’t have a viable product? No problem. Explain that by telling potential customers about your idea. Ask if they want to buy when you build it. Consumers like to help innovators. It’s as easy as creating a prototype, taking a few pictures and posting a link to buy on your networks. Mary Shenouda at Paleo Chef funded her entire startup PhatFudge with a pre-order plea posted on her social media accounts. That led to $50,000 in pre-orders and what is now a fast-growing business. Don’t make the rookie mistake I made. If you can’t get at least five people to buy before you build, then save yourself a world of pain.

Just how well your idea sells is a good indication of whether or not you’re on the right track. Setting your product up for pre-orders gives you a view into the future.

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Grants And Small Business Loans

You know, there is such a thing as free money. Or I suppose, almost-free money.

If you are a minority or have a special niche, there are grants that are targeted to you. You just need to find them. Research what kinds of small business loans are available. Look to the Small Business Administration and your local Chamber of Commerce to learn about what kinds of grants and business loans you qualify for. If you only need $10,000 or less, then you could apply for a microloan. That said, microloans could leave you with an unsustainable amount of debt that could bankrupt your business. I’m always super careful with loans.

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Strategic Angel Investors

Up until now, your business has been growing like a hockey stick — up and to the right. You started off with enough capital to kick off your business, and sales are good. If you had some extra money to advertise, market or add a few hires, the game would absolutely change. Your saving grace may be in the land of angels. Angel investors are partners who are willing to invest their money into your business in exchange for owning a percentage of your company. It’s up to you to determine how much you’re willing to sell to the investor. And it’s ultimately up to that angel investor to decide if they want to take the financial risk. Just remember, the average equity received by angel investors is only 12.3% and an angel investor recipient raises on average $328,500, according to Fundivo. These won’t be big checks, typically.

Whichever path you choose to fund your startup, there are more ways than ever to scale. It’s going to take plenty of diligent research and follow-up on your end, but the end result may just be OPM (other peoples money). That has a nice little ring to it, doesn’t?



Let's chat on instagram @CodieSanchez

How To Successfully Take Your Job On The Road


How To Successfully Take Your Job On The Road

Originally written by Codie Sanchez (that's me!) for Forbes: here. 

I didn’t find the job, I created it.

When people find out what I do, often the first thing they say is, “How did you find a job that allows you to travel the world and do what you want?”

Then they say, “You’re so lucky.”

I answer, "Yes I am."

That said, my answer is always the same: “I didn’t find the job, I created it.”

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"I wanted to travel, see the world and make an impact."

When I started my career in finance, I wasn’t incredible. I was quite good but I was not the top performer at my company. I could pitch investors, make sales and perform financial analysis but I was new to finance. But here’s the thing: I didn’t want to spend my life behind a desk. I loved my job, but I wanted to travel, see the world and make an impact.

I found the intersection of talent. I wasn’t No. 1 in the world at one thing but I was very good at several, including finance, sales and speaking Spanish. I realized that I didn’t have to be the 1% because I had something better: a unique combination of skills that no one else had. I call this my leverage point.

I found where my average talents connected to make them unique.

Instead of quitting my job, I put together a business proposal for my boss at the time and said, “Look, I think there are investment opportunities in Latin America that we are missing out on. I want to take see if I can create business for our company down there.”

He was intrigued and gave me the go-ahead. When that first trip was successful, I asked for a month-long second trip. I extended that to two months, then six months. Finally, I proposed that we create a new position for me that would allow me to travel Latin America as much as I wanted, creating business and investment opportunities for my company and only paying me if they worked.

You may be thinking, “Hey that’s great for you, but my job isn’t remote.” Neither was mine until I proved that I could add value. Here’s how you can take your career on the road without taking a pay cut. Sound good?

Related: Travel for a Living

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"Find your leverage point..."

Make a list of two or three talents to combine and use them as your leverage point.

Find Your Leverage Point

Make a list of what you are good at. What two or three talents can you combine to use as your leverage point? Remember, you don’t have to be the world’s expert or even the most exceptional person at your company. It might be the fact that you have both technical skills and human resources qualifications so you can travel to overseas manufacturing plants for quality assurance and safety procedures. Maybe you are a writer and a business analyst and you can travel to clients and potential clients and create clear reports that describe what is happening there to your home office. The possibilities are endless because your leverage point is not based on a single skill but on a combination of several.

Trust yourself. You know more than you think you do.
— Benjamin Spock

Do The Research

Once I found my leverage point, I began researching opportunities in Latin America. Latinos are the fastest-growing demographic in the U.S., meaning there are a lot of ties between U.S. and Latin American businesses. NAFTA and other free trade agreements, micromills and proximity to distribution mean that businesses are turning to Latin America instead of Asia for manufacturing. Plus, the growing startup scene in places like Chile, Mexico, Argentina and Brazil makes these countries a fertile playground. Go to Google, subscribe to the top newsletters on your area of interest, look at what your competitor firms are doing in the region and pretend like you are writing an article on the opportunity. Think like a journalist. Gather data.

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LatAm: The fastest-growing demographic..."

"...a fertile playground for investors..."

The hardest step to take is always the first one. The rest build momentum like a snowball downhill.

Make The Pitch

Once you have your leverage point and your data, make the pitch. Show them that you can bring more value to the company on the road. Ask for a trial run to prove yourself, a short trip with a specific purpose. And one last thing: Don’t ask for a higher salary. That will come after you have proved your value in this new role. Besides, you are about to start your dream job traveling the world. And you just got your company to pay for it. What more could you want?

The hardest step to take is always the first one.

The rest build momentum like a snowball downhill. Your goal here is to self-assess to find your leverage point, externally assess to find your supporting research and finally turn those two into a win-win case for you and your employer. Remember above all else, most people who have built incredible lives created them. They weren’t given them. That means all that stands between you and the life you want is yourself. 




For True Innovation, Change the Way You Travel


For True Innovation, Change the Way You Travel


Not Your Dad's Meeting.

This is Corporate Retreats 2.0.


Remember when business retreats used to mean holing up in a Marriott or going on a corporate outing? I'm going to let you in on a little secret: Those days are over. Millennials will make up 75 percent of the workforce by 2025, and they aren't satisfied with the status quo of older generations. With fast and affordable travel and a globalized economy, today's workforce is interested in experiences and adventures, not cocktails in the hotel lobby.

If I don't have your attention yet, these facts should help. Unemployment is at 4.1 percent, the lowest it has been in 17 years. Sixty-eight percent of all human resources heads say that talent shortage for full-time positions is one of the biggest challenges they are facing. What does this mean? It means that if you want to attract and keep talent, you need to differentiate yourself. Changing the way your company travels might be just what you need.


Millennials will make up 75 percent of the workforce by 2025, and they aren’t satisfied with the status quo of older generations.


Creating New Experiences

A friend of mine told me a story that illustrates this perfectly. On a recent trip to Mexico City, his six-person consulting team shared an Airbnb rental in a trendy part of the city instead of paying for hotel rooms. In the evening, they hung out in the shared space of the high-rise apartment and sampled street food from the markets. Some members of his team extended their stay for the weekend and explored other parts of the country on their own. This unique bonding experience led them to an innovative breakthrough with their client and a pivot in the direction he took his business.

This unique bonding experience led them to an innovative breakthrough with their client and a pivot in the direction he took his business.
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Have passport will travel.

They aren't the only ones. My teams have been known to fly to Mexico, where they take boxing lessons in the evenings and tour our clients' construction sites during the daytime. We even made a trip over to Valle de Bravo for a sailing competition. We may have lost that competition to the point of near embarrassment, but we got to know our clients personally and our team made the kind of memories that families share. 

Related How to Travel & Make Money

Making Your Company Look Good

What do these trends mean for you and your company? It's time to think outside the box. When you begin planning your next business retreat, mid-year meeting or stakeholder conference, go for something different. For less than you would spend to take your team to a resort in Palm Springs, California, you can share in an international experience while improving employee retention.


Currency arbitrage 

Desitinations half the price, double the bonding.

In other words, this is an easy way to make your company more attractive and earn bragging rights in your industry. After all, who doesn't want to be known as the company that takes vacations abroad? According to The Boston Consulting Group, companies that don't reach out to millennials today, risk missing the boat as they become the core producers and consumers in our society.

Related: My Restaurant Guide to Do Business in Mexico City


Planning a Company Trip 

Planning a company getaway to another country might be intimidating for the decision makers at your firm. That's why I recommend using one of the many travel-planning services that have popped up recently. Remember to price check and make sure the company you choose offers the type of experience you are looking for.

Corporate Retreat

" Hosting your company retreat is about innovating your company's culture."

When you get back to the office after a well-planned trip, expect to see better communication, increased efficiency and lower employee turnover.
— Codie Sanchez

One of my favorites tools for planning is Mezi. Think of it as a free, personal-travel virtual assistant. They take trips from a twinkle in my perpetually wanderlust-inclined eye to reality by booking everything from outings, restaurants, hotels and flights -- and ensure my team gets the best deals. And a couple services that I've researched and would like to try myself include Digital Outposts, which specializes in "workcations" from two weeks to two months long, and Surf Office -- a beachfront workspace that can accommodate up to 80 people.

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"I prefer Latin America..."

Then again, I'm a wee bit biased.

As for where to go, I prefer Latin America. You can find everything you need for a successful corporate outing at a great price. If you're looking for an authentic cultural experience, you can't beat it for its exotic food, fantastic music and friendly locals.

In my experience, people who travel and seek out new adventures are more innovative. And, often, when innovation grows among your employees, so does your bottom line.

In the end, hosting your company retreat is about innovating your company's culture. When you get back to the office after a well-planned trip, expect to see better communication, increased efficiency and lower employee turnover.

Still not convinced? I'll leave you with this. In my experience, people who travel and seek out new adventures are more innovative. And, often, when innovation grows among your employees, so does your bottom line.

So it's not a question of, "Can I afford to take my team overseas?"

It's a question of, "Can I afford not to?"



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Luck Favors the Bold

Go big... 


How To Actually Get The Introductions You're Asking For

How To Actually Get The Introductions You're Asking For

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It’s not what you know; it’s who you know. It’s a platitude, but it's true. Our world is about who can we connect with to sell, influence or build with. Thus, when your moment comes, when you finally have the email address of (insert celebrity, influencer, business leader), you grin like a Cheshire cat. Now is your chance to secure your dream job, opportunity, interview and riches. One small step away from them, one giant leap for everyday humans everywhere.

"All influencers and leaders share one thing: a keen understanding of the extreme difficulty in building relationships, businesses, assets and success."


There's just one big problem. Successful people are inundated with one-sided asks. I get on average 25-30 asks a week. And let’s be clear, I’m nobody special. I asked my friend, a leading VC fund manager, how many she gets. It’s innumerable. I asked a friend who runs a Fortune 500 company. He gets hundreds.

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"Successful people are inundated with one-sided asks. 


How do we stand out from their crowded inbox?

Let me give you the inside scoop.

All influencers and leaders share one thing: a keen understanding of the extreme difficulty in building relationships, businesses, assets and success. Business building isn't for the faint of heart. Beneath the surface, we’ve all failed 100 times to succeed that one precious time.

Funny enough, something happens when you start having any sort of success. You go through the grind, you come out on the other side a bit scarred, but it doesn’t show, and like birds to bread, people come along and they want in. They want in without having to go through the obstacle course.

You get asked questions like (these are all real):

  • “Can you introduce me to your top clients/your sponsors/that famous person you just posted with?”
  • “I need a job. Can you hire me? You seem to do well.”
  • “Will you invest in my startup even though we have no product yet?”
  • “I just want to pick your brain over coffee. Do you have a few minutes?
  • “Will you be my mentor?”
Get the meeting

Every time you are engaging with someone influential, your first question should be: "What is in it for them?"

Related: Make them Love You At First Handshake

I still can’t figure out what exactly it means to mentor someone.

Does that mean hand holding?

Weekly meetings? Dinner dates? I have no idea.

On one hand, I absolutely admire the guts it takes to throw out your wants. However, if you actually want to be given these items, you must understand what is involved in giving. And if you’re like me and you get these questions, you can now send them this article with a sweet note saying, “I want to help you get better at requests and getting what you want. Read below and get back to me.”

How To Get What You Want Without Being Labeled A Taker

Every time you are engaging with someone influential, your first question should be:

"What is in it for them?"

Instead of asking how can they help you, think how you can help them.

If you take one thing away from this article, let that be it.

Bad Example:

"Hello Codie, my name is ______, from Mexico. I am currently studying B.A. and Finance. I am really interested in getting the chance to work in N.Y. in trading or capital markets. Could you give me advice as I am a foreigner to achieve this goal? Thank you."

I don’t know this person. There is no context. In addition, I don’t live in New York and don’t work in trading or capital markets. Make sure you do your research on your target.

Related:  #1 Reason You Aren't Getting What You Want

Get the meeting

"I have a rule of thumb. I don’t ask for something until I’ve given 10 times the value of my ask to someone."


Good Example:



I noticed that you had a new product launch on your website and hadn’t yet (insert whatever you can give according to your unique talents). So I created an explanation video for you. (you can do this on Fiverr for pennies). Also I edited this error on the website and included this article on your competition I thought would be relevant. I don't like to ask for something without giving in return.

I am a student in Mexico and really interested in your industry. You’ve built an incredible foothold in finance, I was wondering if you had one initial step, resource, book or contact you think would make sense for me to start with.

Many thanks,


Follow the 10x Rule

I have a rule of thumb.

I don’t ask for something until I’ve given 10 times the value of my ask to someone.

Every time I have broken this rule, I have been told "no" and generally embarrassed myself.

For the next 10 days, try giving something professionally daily without asking for anything.

Don’t Ask What You Can Do To Help

What can I do to help you? I have no idea. I don’t know you.

What are you good at? What do you have to offer? Are you trustworthy? Remember, it is definitely not the job of the person you are engaging with to tell you how you can help them.

This is your mission, should you choose to accept it.

Your mission is to use your intellect to truly help another. Your mission is to find solutions. Your mission is to be one of the few who does, not the many who speak. If you can do that; if you can provide real value as opposed to desire masked as value, the doors will open. I promise.

And no, I’m not your mentor.

You are.



Related: A Seat At The Table Beats A Sign Outside the Building

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