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How to Overcome Business Failure and Thrive in Hard Times (Episode 90)

With over 20 years as a successful entrepreneur, investor, and advisor in the hospitality and entertainment industries, Michael Sinensky is the Founder and CEO of simplevenue, a leader in micro concept entertainment and hospitality venues.

He also started WeShield during the global pandemic, which sells PPE and medical supplies to Health Care providers, Fortune 500 companies, and government organizations.

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What you will learn

  • How to be resilient during hard times
  • How to overcome business failures and get back up again when times are tough
  • How to nurture your network effectively
  • How to reduce and manage business risks

Transcript

Jeff Bullas

00:00:03 - 00:01:24

Hi everyone and welcome to the Jeff Bullas show. Today I have with me, Michael Sinensky. Now, Michael is the CEO of Simplevenue and WeShield. So what's so interesting about Michael's challenges is that he's been an entrepreneur, but Covid sort of mixed things up and provided some real challenges for him. So Michael is recognized as a business leader and philanthropist as the co-founder and CEO of medical supply company, WeShield, and co-founder of hospitality company, Simplevenue.

Now, Michael founded WeShield in response to COVID-19 pandemic with all these hospitality businesses were forced to close by applying the strength and leadership, extensive network and supply chain management. WeShield is known as a nationally recognized medical supply company and supplies safety supplies to some of the largest government agencies. WeShield is powered by a proprietary sales and marketing process and driven by AI and has quickly established itself as one of the leading suppliers in the industry.

Michael sits on the board of New York City Hospitality Alliance, the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce and previously represented New York City Comptroller’s Scott Stringer on the board of American Museum of Natural History and Wildlife Conservation Society. He's a graduate of New York University Stern School of Business. Great to have you on the show, Michael!

Michael Sinensky

00:01:25 - 00:01:29

Thank you so much. You did your homework.

Jeff Bullas

00:01:29 - 00:01:34

I did. I actually can read as well, which is very encouraging, isn't it?

Michael Sinensky

00:01:34 - 00:01:38

That makes one of us.

Jeff Bullas

00:01:39 - 00:02:02

So, Michael, we interviewed and had a chat with entrepreneurs and so you've been to the Stern School of Business, which I believe is quite an elite school of business. But what got you to start, you know, what inspired you to become an entrepreneur?

Michael Sinensky

00:02:04 - 00:02:44

I mean, I was an entrepreneur since I was a kid, I was selling school supplies in a public school and then selling baseball cards in middle school, selling candy with eight other kids in high school, I got a whole candy mafia thing going on and just you know in college I started throwing parties. I barely attended class at Stern, I actually had kids, I paid kids to take classes for me and do my work for me. You know, I wasn't like really, I didn't love school, but I love living in New York City. You know the rest is history.

Jeff Bullas

00:02:45 - 00:03:07

So the hospitality business that you started, what, where did that idea come from? Because I'm always intrigued by the idea, so because ideas are one thing, taking action is another. So where did the idea come from? Can you remember? Or it was just a drunken conversation at a New York party?

Michael Sinensky

00:03:07 - 00:06:02

I was throwing parties and I remember I was going to my parties before I was legally allowed in them and I started throwing concerts and we would do these big sports weekends where we would rent out, you know these holes or venues for like 3-4 days in a row tie to sports big weekends like NBA All-Star weekend or the Super Bowl. And you know, we actually did a huge thing in California in 2003 or 2004, I can't remember but it went really wrong like I was either going to make $1 million dollars or it's gonna lose everything including like all my property and unfortunately that was one of my first failures and I was 22 at the time, I don't know how many years ago I was 17, so I was 24 at the time and I came back to New York, broke, I had an apartment which I was able to buy with my promoting money and I came back missing mortgage payments and I actually took a job at a bar because I was as a Event Planner and Marketing Manager. So you know that's what I was really good at, I was getting people to go to a space and filling the venue. That's what my expertise was. So within two months, three months of running this bar, I increased their business by at least 75-100% I remember like within three months. And you know, I really enjoyed it because unlike the concert business which is, you know all your eggs in one basket, you know, there's a lot of things that can go wrong. At least for the bar business, you know, there could be bad days, there could be a hurricane or snowstorm, But at least you'll be able to open a few days later, you know, it's a 365 day business, not a one day where all your eggs in one basket.

So I moved away from those big festivals and concerts and I enjoyed, you know, operating bars and that was the first of many, it was called Proof, and a guy named Matt Schindel, who was one of my original mentors, he gave me a shot and I had one of the best years after my failure and that's, you know, something that happens to me like I had around three failures in my life. Big failures and the following year turned out to be the best year at that time of my life for business. So just you know, it shows how an entrepreneur can balance back.

Jeff Bullas

00:06:03 - 00:06:30

Yeah, it's a challenge, isn't it? But that's really a mindset and attitude to life, which I really loved hearing those stories that you've bounced back from tough times and it's happened to me two or three times as well. But why do you think you were good at the hospitality business? Was it your personality? Was it just love what you're doing? You worked hard, you created, what do you think was your secret sauce?

Michael Sinensky

00:06:32 - 00:07:12

I am definitely an event planner at heart. I love making sure everyone is having a good time when we plan trips, I'm planning the craziest itineraries for everyone, like, down to the minute. I just want to have control over other people's time, making sure that they're having the best time and, you know, at the expense of my own good time. So, you know, based on that, you know, that's a customer service job, That's hospitality in another show. So my personality lends to it and it makes me happy. So, you know, making sure everyone's having a good time makes me happy and that's what hospitality is, and I love it.

Jeff Bullas

00:07:13 - 00:07:31

So, there was a quote I heard from George Lucas that said that you're not only going to love what you do, but also love the process of doing that. Do you think, do you enjoy the process of putting it all together, that attention to detail for an event?

Michael Sinensky

00:07:32 - 00:08:12

So I love the putting team together, the coming up with the idea of launching something and seeing everyone enjoy it and then getting the hell out and going to the next thing. I'm definitely not an ops guy to see it through to the end and, you know, a lot of people say you gotta count the pennies to make the dollars. I'm the opposite way, you know, I'm happy with 50 cents. If I can do what I love and move onto the next thing to, to expand to scale like that's what I love.

Jeff Bullas

00:08:13 - 00:08:19

Right. So what you do is surround yourself with people that got that attention to detail. Is that what you're saying?

Michael Sinensky

00:08:20 - 00:08:35

Of course. Yeah. An entrepreneur is only as good as his or her team and you know as a CEO I've had so many good employees and you know, I would be unemployed if I didn't have these employees.

Jeff Bullas

00:08:35 - 00:09:04

Yeah. And that's what basically you can buy time and that's called paying other people to help you do what you need to do. And so you're greater hospitality like at events but then you started Simplevenue which operates unique food and beverage micro concepts in unutilized spaces within hotel and restaurant properties. How did that start? And then when you get into the story of how Covid affected that, how did that start?

Michael Sinensky

00:09:05 - 00:11:19

So after another failure, never mind, in the hospitality industry where I opened up a fast casual brand where it was smoked Texas barbecue meets Mexican food. So we’re basically smoking brisket, pulled pork and chicken and putting it into burritos, tacos and bowls and it was amazing. Like the food was unbelievable. But I listen to the noise of like people that, you know the owner of Panda Express came in and [inaudible] like all these people have come in who love the concept because it was so popular that blinds literally down the block like 100 people waiting to come into this tiny place and I listen to that noise and instead of focusing on making sure that this one place was successful and could be expanded properly, I expanded to five locations within 18 months over budget, undercapitalized without the right team to open up at the wrong time in the worst winter I could have ever imagined. And I ended up losing a couple million dollars and, you know, again this is like the second time in my life actually where you know the first time with the concerts, but this is the second time where I had this huge failure where I lost everything. I had to sell a bunch of properties that I own just to, you know just to pay some debt. Lost a few million dollars and I realized the biggest problem in that business was I was investing so much money into other people's properties that if something went wrong, I would lose everything.I would be in debt so much money because I owed so much in rent. So after that failure I realized that I never want to pay rent ever again and you know, around four years ago, five years ago now. I saw, I don't know, I think he lost it.

Jeff Bullas

00:11:20 - 00:11:24

Yeah I don't know what happened there. You've hit a button or something. Okay we're back.

Michael Sinensky

00:11:24 - 00:14:16

Okay sorry about that. So you know, around five years ago I started a company with the realization that hotel leaders and real estate developers know a lot about developing properties in real estate but they know nothing about hospitality and food and beverage. So you know we thought “hey we can create content and create amenities for all these hotel leaders and developers who don't know anything about this business but we could also do it in places they would never even think to monetize”. So we would take the weirdest space imaginable, you know luggage storage clubs and conference rooms, concierge desks, the spaces behind the mechanicals, basement, second floor offices and turn those into cool unique foodie concepts and you know we did something called Sushi by Bou which is a timed experience. You get to sit down with the sushi chef and in 30 minutes for $50 you get this amazing omakase meal seated with only seven other people in a tiny speakeasy room and people just loved it, they loved it. From there because of, you know, the success. The owners and real estate developers, hoteliers asked us “Can you do more things?” So then we started taking, you know we were the first in the world to take a hotel room and turn it into a full service restaurant. So it's something called Sushi Sweet and we're doing other concepts too, but Sushi Sweet basically checks-in to the front desk, you prepay like a Broadway show and they have your name at the door, like, you know, like a hotel reservation. They hand you a room key and then you go up the elevator to room 1001 at this hotel and use your hotel room key and go inside. And it's this four seat omakase sushi bar and it's the coolest experience. There's a patio where you can drink, you can hang out with your friends for hours and it's just one of the most intimate, cool, luxurious experiences for an affordable price that, you know, I've ever heard of. And it's just an amazing thing that we invented it and it’s ours. So no rent. That's the bottom line.

We go into partnerships with the landlord and hotel leaders, like a joint adventure where we split the profits. They usually put up the money to open up our values.

Jeff Bullas

00:14:16 - 00:14:19

Okay, So what you're doing is you're reducing the risk instead of taking on risk?

Michael Sinensky

00:14:20 - 00:14:28

Yes, we were running an almost zero risk business in one of the riskiest industries in the world.

Jeff Bullas

00:14:28 - 00:14:34

I like it. Okay, So obviously you learn from the past experiences, Michael.

Michael Sinensky

00:14:35 - 00:14:50

Yeah. Yeah. So save money on office space. That's why I'm in my bedroom because it's Covid and we don't have offices right now and I have nowhere to go besides here.

Jeff Bullas

00:14:50 - 00:15:37

Okay, don't worry. That sounds like 50% of the people in the world, frankly, Michael.

So Covid hits and hospitality basically gets hammered. So you had to rely on your resilience again to do this. So you had to pivot into another business to pay the bills and make money so I am intrigued by what you did to get into WeShield. So it hit the beginning of last year and you must have seen them start to see the writing on the world going, okay, I've got to do something. So where did WeShield come out of just watching that there's an opportunity to sell masks because of Covid. How did it all start? And the idea?

Michael Sinensky

00:15:38 - 00:22:12

So, you know, January 2020 came and no one saw what was coming, right? Like we heard about the first couple of cases and this and that, the Super Bowl came in February still, you know, it still wasn't really a bad thing. And then as March came, you know, it was getting, you know, like zombie apocalypse time. Right? So in New York, they just closed the schools at the beginning of March and you know, our venues went from 100% capacity to like 10% capacity. And we went from doing around 50 million in business. You know, crudo manually to essentially zero. And then it comes March 17 and the government closes us right? You know, March 17th for me is another one of the worst days for me. Another third, the third of my failures. And the first time I was actually unemployed and trying to go on unemployment. That was a very scary time. You know, I had around 25 venues right before and now I had zero. So you know, that was a rough rough time. You know, I had no clue what I was doing. My wife had a dental practice. She was closed also. You know, apparently going to a bar and whitening your teeth or not are things that aren’t needed. Yeah, essential services, you know.

So we were unemployed and we didn't know what we're gonna do. And I actually started a charity several years before this so I went back to my charity, the charity's called Friends of Rockaway. And basically depending upon the disaster, we figure out the needs. I started in the charity based on my hometown, Rockaway, getting destroyed by hurricane Sandy. And you know, I rebuilt it to date with the help of SPP. who's a fiscal sponsor as well as so many other volunteers and sponsors, we rebuilt 300 homes in Rockaway and you know, helped out thousands of homeowners to get their lives back in order. And you know, that was some of the best work I've ever done, especially something that was volunteer and never, never made a dollar on it. That was some of the best work I've ever done.

And I had such a good time doing it too actually, even though it was like such a serious thing. So I went back to that charity after Covid and the need at the time was obviously everyone was hearing about the PPE shortage globally. In New York hospitals, you saw doctors putting on garbage bags for gowns, reusing medical masks after surgery, going into operations without gloves, treating patients without the proper equipment. And I just, I couldn't believe it. I couldn't believe America in New York looked like a third world country. Like, you know, we didn't have the tools to fight what was happening. So I wanted to help. And at first I tried to get products donated to us so we can donate it to hospitals and nursing homes and home care attendants. And you know, nobody had it and the people who had it definitely didn't want to voluntarily hand it out for free because it was such a scarcity and it was in such high demand and they were asking for such a high price. So then I just, you know, I took some of my savings which was depleting by the day and I bought some masks. I just bought some masks and I saw how that worked and it was shit show and, you know, I donated to a few hospitals, but it was such a tiny amount, you know, for what was $15,000. It was such a week like, you know, looking for donations and I wanted to do more. So around that time, people just were asking me because I have a big network. “Michael, you know, can you help us?” People in the government, people in large businesses, people in the medical industry, they were just like “We can't get PPE, we need your help, can you help us? Can you find anything?” And one of my investors from my company who had nursing homes, I said, “You know, if you can help me get masks, I will send you millions of dollars of business. Right?” So I found an importer who was a friend of mine who had another friend and he had a friend et cetera. And we basically put up a good amount of money to bring masks in from China. And I can't tell you how crazy and how risky and how scared of an experience that was to send like half a million dollars to China and then not see a mask for three weeks. I haven't told you that the government took it and got lost. I mean it's stuck in customs. I mean it was the craziest time. But from that one experience, you know, we realized that we can do this and you know, we then created this big company and from one deal to the next, it was just growing like we were basically selling ice in the desert. So it wasn't, you know, as long as we can get that ice, the people in the desert are willing to buy and that was the biggest part, the toughest part was finding the supplier. So we,you know, we then broke away from our original partners and me and my best friend and partner, Roman, we then put in.

Michael Sinensky

00:22:36 - 00:23:30

So you know, one thing led to another. We then implemented. So let's take a step back after that first deal and realizing, you know, we can do this and there's so many people to help. We decided to go out on our own because we had the supplier and we had the customers, right? So we decided to go on our own and we went all in, you know, by May we basically took whatever we made from the first month of like these deals that were going on. We went all in and highered up and we put in this artificial intelligence marketing software that we actually owned a company that utilized the software. Our company was selling the software which also went on the Covid,

Jeff Bullas

00:23:30 - 00:23:33

What's the name of that company, Michael?

Michael Sinensky

00:23:33 - 00:23:36

That was called AAI Assist.

Michael Sinensky

00:23:38 - 00:24:35

So we sold artificial intelligence marketing software. So it manages your leads. So we used the software and we were able to reach out to so many end-users who were desperately needing help. And the fact that we were able to get into their, you know, right in front of them at the right time via robots via a robot contacting them relentlessly. You know, we were able to crush it in a year. From May to January in half a year, we did around $60 million dollars in revenue. And we were named number 53rd fastest growing company in America by Inc. 5000.

Jeff Bullas

00:24:38 - 00:25:01

That's quite a story. So we should see it hit, use some really smart technology to scale. And it sounds like you have an incredible network in other words relationships with people that help you in tough times and in good times. Would that be one of your superpowers?

Michael Sinensky

00:25:02 - 00:27:26

Definitely. You know that comes from being that event planner and customer service and hospitality. I know a lot of people. I've helped a lot of people. You know there's a big, there's a huge circle of my network and I'm a believer that every person you meet, put them in your phone, put their contact, how do you know them so that you can organize your contacts based on, you know, what you can work with them in the future. So with this PPE thing, there were all these secret society chats on Telegram and WhatsApp and Signal and Discord, all these crazy encrypted sites where people didn't want anyone seeing their conversations. But there lived this black market world of PPE Traders right? And you know at first there were hundreds of people throwing around these bullshit fake deals of like billion dollar 3M 18 60 deals and you know later on we realized nothing was real but every single person I met in this industry I put them in his PPE1 their name, PPE2 their name, PPE 3 and I’m at PPE 5000 right now. So like I've met 5000 people in 18 months that I've worked with or talked to about working with that I know is in this business and that is also how I've been able to succeed is because like people call me the mayor of PPE right? So you gotta put yourself out there, you have to put yourself out there but not in a fake way. Like you know you go to these networking events and everyone wears these name tags and like “Hi what do you do?” You know it's like you have to have a passion for what you do. So my passion is you know talking to people, helping, and I'm seeing how we can work together. So it just doesn't change the PPE or the bar business or concerts or sales or anything. You know it's loving what you do and talking about that and how you can help each other. With networking, it's usually what you can get out of people like, you know, like what can you do for me with my strategy is what can we do for each other? Yeah.

Jeff Bullas

00:27:27 - 00:27:37

Well that's the only way it really works isn't it? You've got to think of what other people need and then help them with that and then the world shows up once you do that.

Michael Sinensky

00:27:39 - 00:27:46

Well once you become powerful enough then it tips. Then you can demand people just help help you.

Jeff Bullas

00:27:46 - 00:28:08

Well that reminds me of the series, I think it's on HBO called Billions which is fascinating from that sort of point of view. I just finished that series and the new one starts at 16th.

So superpowers, how do you nurture those networks? You basically go out of your way to help people until you reach a position where..

Michael Sinensky

00:28:09 - 00:31:48

So I mean by the way I nurture, you know my network is I think I know I guess and I definitely believe that I'm a natural born leader. So I do put myself out there where I lead. An example of PPE, I established basically like, you know, in what's happened Telegram there are people who create these group chats and the people who create these group chats then have a responsibility to ensure that at least I think they have a responsibility to ensure that there's no scamming, there's no fraud happening under their watch. Now a lot of people didn't give a shit, they just created these chats so they can make a lot of money, right?

I obviously created these chats to make money but at the same time I took admins who are willing from other chats who were willing to start a society together of cleaning up the industry. So I created this, this, you know, society of around 100 administrators of Telegram, WhatsApp, Facebook, all these PPE chats who were willing to clean up the industry because there's a lot of fraud. What we would do is we would have our own little group chat for around 100 people. And every day we would submit people that we think we're scamming. And if we agreed, if we had a majority, we would add them to a list and then we would also take their, you know, we would write down the list why, you know, we thought they were either we call him the joker broker or scammer or fraudster. And then we would share this list with the community. And not only that, we would remove any of these people from all of our chats. And we had like 50 chats together, right? So it was a powerful thing. You know, we are cleaning up the industry. Now, I think, you know, we have a responsibility of not only making money but doing good. So I think that’s one way to nurture your network is by being, you know, honest and helpful and people will then look to you as someone they can trust. And throughout the pandemic, you know, everyone would come to me like “Michael, have you worked with this guy? Yes, I have a good deal. Don't worry about it. No, I have never worked with him. No, he's not even my phone. Be careful. No he's on this list, definitely walked away.” So like you know people would come to me looking for my, you know, advice to transact with people because so much money was flying around and then even more so we would have like these fake courts and fake appeals where people could come and appeal the fact that they were on the list. So we developed like this community, you know, to ensure that so many other people, thousands of other people wouldn't get scammed and I think that's you know being a leader, you know like I think that's one great way to nurture your network is to go out of your way to ensure your network is okay, you know, is okay and that you're not just looking to take stuff out of them.

So you're not just looking to take everything from them, you know, you're looking to give up more than you get. It's sort of like being a mentor, you know, and I pride myself on that.

Jeff Bullas

00:31:48 - 00:32:07

Yeah obviously and that's why I was intrigued by how you did your nurturing because networking is one thing, but nurturing it is another because it takes a lot of time and effort and passion.

So what was the term you just used before? That you're, not the godfather, of PPE was it?

Michael Sinensky

00:32:08 - 00:32:09

The mayor.

Jeff Bullas

00:32:09 - 00:32:12

The mayor? Yeah, the mayor sounds much more trustworthy than the godfather of PPE.

Michael Sinensky

00:32:12 - 00:33:30

The mayor of WhatsApp PPE. So you know, it was a crazy ride, you know, culminating to in June we were actually acquired by a public company called OpTech and, you know, they're publicly traded companies on the OTC with the trade, with the ticker symbol OPTI like it's a penny stock right now and we have high hopes and, and big plans to up list to the NASDAQ. So you know, just our company alone, we're at around 150 million sales in 18 months.

So you know, it's a crazy wild ride from what you know, it came from. It's very, very stressful and nerve wracking because I mean indirectly, you're helping to save lives, you're helping to protect lives so you know, you have a lot of desperate people looking for the same stuff, everyone else is in the world and you have to, you have to help them, right? So like my job besides CEO, WeShield is head of supply. So my job is to ensure Michael's company has the supply to give to our clients, which it's very stressful.

Jeff Bullas

00:33:31 - 00:33:38

Yeah and because there's a whole strain on the whole logistics, distribution business.

Michael Sinensky

00:33:38 - 00:34:05

Yeah, the Christmas time and holiday time, you're gonna see people not getting holiday gifts. You're gonna see, you're already starting to see empty shelves in America. Your 4-6 months away from getting furniture or from getting appliances. I've never seen anything like this. And you know, everything is so backed up because all these factories all pivoted to something else, you know, during the pandemic.

Jeff Bullas

00:34:06 - 00:34:09

Yeah and then the cost of freight is like quadrupled.

Michael Sinensky

00:34:10 - 00:34:34

Yeah. It's coming down now. But it, you know, as an example, it's only supposed to be a couple of thousand dollars per container. You know those big metal containers that you see on these cargo ships? At the height. Only a few weeks ago there was a $30,000 a container and then they ran out of containers. So it's just right now. I just can't believe what's happening. Yeah.

Jeff Bullas

00:34:34 - 00:34:41

Yes. So there's people saying it's going to recover quite quickly and others say it's going to be going on for a long time. And maybe the truth is somewhere in the middle.

Michael Sinensky

00:34:43 - 00:35:40

Yeah. I don't, I think, you know PPE was here before Covid, you know, doctors and hospitals and construction workers we're always in need of PPE. Restaurant workers with gloves and masks are not going to go away on public transportation, airports. It's here to stay and I wish it wasn't. I wish, you know, I wish I never sold a mask again to a civilian because I don't, you know, I don't like to see the world like this. I wish I can concentrate on the what PPE should really be created for, which is, you know, construction workers, hospital staff, surgery, restaurant workers, et cetera. I wish I could just do that. But you know, it is what it is. And we're going to do, we can to help out our clients.

Jeff Bullas

00:35:41 - 00:35:49

Yeah. The same here and we're all missing travel and we're all missing new experiences. And we've been on a lockdown here in Sydney for about three or four months.

Michael Sinensky

00:35:49 - 00:35:52

I know I can't, I can't believe what Australia is doing.

Jeff Bullas

00:35:53 - 00:36:00

I look, we're out of it. We're almost out of it now. But yeah, I can't even leave the country. That's the other challenge as well.

Michael Sinensky

00:36:00 - 00:36:03

I know it's just like, you know, it's like a

Jeff Bullas

00:36:03 - 00:36:04

It's like a hermit kingdom.

Michael Sinensky

00:36:06 - 00:37:02

It's crazy. I mean Covid is very bad. But you know, the second, the second like I went to Portugal recently and Lisbon, I was there like less than a decade ago and it was thriving. It was beautiful. It was just an awesome place to be part of the town and now I went there recently and it's destitute. It's broke. It's poor. It's like it's empty and and you know, it's like these countries are the countries that are choosing to live with it are thriving. And the countries that are letting covid dictate their society by shutting down are ruined. And it's you know, it's a tough position to be in because you know, you're choosing economy or lives but economy is lives also. It's just very difficult to, you know.

Jeff Bullas

00:37:02 - 00:37:11

Yeah. It's interesting to watch every government, different reaction, people's reaction to things. But..

Michael Sinensky

00:37:11 - 00:37:34

Well in America, we have 50 states and these 50 states are like 50 countries, you know, so we have 50 different opinions and it makes this even harder. You go from one state to the next, you know in New York right now. I can't go to a restaurant if I don't have my vaccination with my proof of vaccination and it's just, it's nuts.

Jeff Bullas

00:37:34 - 00:37:53

Yeah. Well that's what we have here now is you need to have vaccination, be fully vaccinated to go to a restaurant. But look, I've enjoyed the simplicity of it in a sense because I live in Sydney which is a beautiful place. I walk to the beach at Harbor and just had to go out to restaurants. I've actually started cooking, Michael.

Michael Sinensky

00:37:53 - 00:38:13

Wow, that's why I made a bad joke to my wife. I said that because she wasn't cooking before Covid. And I said to her, I'm like, “You know 600,000 people have to die for you to become a chef.” Sorry. Yeah, but it's like, you know, this is what had to happen for her to become a cook.

Jeff Bullas

00:38:13 - 00:38:15

Yeah, well,

Michael Sinensky

00:38:15 - 00:38:16

So I'm sorry, it's a bad joke.

Jeff Bullas

00:38:16 - 00:38:57

I totally get it. So Michael, just to wrap it up here, I love your stories, you seem to be able to live with a high level of risk and hats off to you, I've been the same in the past but you seem to have gone from the doghouse to the penthouse multiple times and looking forward to hearing the rest of your journey and hopefully with an IPO with what you're doing.

So Michael, as an entrepreneur, what are a few things you'd love to share with that audience just to wrap it up here, what's, you know, two or three things that you would like to share

Michael Sinensky

00:38:57 - 00:41:31

Well, first of all, I want to share the fact that I wrote my first book about this whole experience with Covid and the pivot and that should be coming out in a couple of months. So that was truly exciting. It's like a memoir and, you know, also failure is about giving up and staying down, successes about always getting up and you know, I'm the proof that you can fail and you can be more successful than ever right after and you know, I just, you have to really will yourself and you don't have to be an entrepreneur. Everyone fails right, everyone fails. So you know, you have to really will yourself to succeed and to get back and number three, so the book, you know the success and number three, you must, people who are either entrepreneurs, running teams, higher stressful situations, must figure out how to get rid of that stress. For me, it's talking to someone like a psychologist as well as meditation. It could be, someone could go punch a punching bag and a gym. I need to go to the gym, I need my psychologist and I need my meditation because I am very stressed out, but you have to find something that can really, you know, make your mind calm and less stressful because mental health is really paramount to anything else.

And last but not least, you know, I've always said family first, business photo finish second. You know, you have to have a, besides a good crew in your team and your business. You have to never forget about your family and your loved ones and don't neglect them because that's what you'll truly regret later in life. You know, business comes and goes, money comes and goes, but your family will be there on your deathbed and you know, you don't want to have regrets of choosing business over family. And there were times in my life where I had offered you know to make God knows how much money but I would have to be out of the house at six AM and I'd be home at 10 PM. You know, I wouldn't choose any business over my family and you know, we talked solely about business but I think that's a major importance for me to share.

Jeff Bullas

00:41:32 - 00:42:07

Well one of the mantras of jeffbullas.com is to win at business and life. And I think there is that tension between the two and it sounds like you're working hard on that all the time and so do I. I think you can't leave your life behind because when your business is, it is life, and you've got to be able to enjoy every part of it. The other thing that I think that I loved hearing from you was the importance and power of networks and nurturing relationships and looking after people. I think that was the business that's important and also in life that's very important. And I think that's something I certainly learned from you.

Michael Sinensky

00:42:07 - 00:42:30

Well, thank you for learning and telling me that to myself again, I like that. I needed to hear that. So yeah, that's four. Number four. Our networks, exactly my book, you know the success versus failure, family first and the nurturing your networks and the power of networks.

Jeff Bullas

00:42:30 - 00:43:01

Yeah. The power of relationships at every level. Thanks Michael. It's been an absolute pleasure. I loved hearing your stories. You are an absolute example of resilience and hats off to you. And I do know, I felt the pain of being in a lot of debt and having closed businesses down. So, it's something that I don't take lightly and thank you for sharing your story. Honestly, that's been an absolute pleasure.

Michael Sinensky

00:43:02 - 00:43:03

Thank you, sir. Thank you for having me.