Manny Lopez has been an entrepreneur since 2011 teaching automation strategies to speakers, coaches, authors, & consultants. He is a father of 3, married to his high school sweetheart, & the creator of the “From Orphan To CEO” project.
Manny was kind enough to sit down with us and chat his life as an entrepreneur & what it means to serve your way to success.
So, Manny, how did you get started with your entrepreneurship journey?
Manny: My journey started when my first mentor inspired me to build my own dream. He told me it was time I stopped asking for permission to build someone else’s dream.
That really stuck with me.
I became a sponge for knowledge in helping entrepreneurs understand automation. I’ve utilized my skillset for over 10 years now in simplifying processes to bring more eyeballs & opportunities for my clients, but the focus of what I speak on today is something very personal for me, the “From Orphan To CEO” project.
See, I come from the foster care system. At 18 months, my sister and I were left in a car. Shortly after that experience, we ended up in foster care, bouncing around home to home. After a couple of years of being someone’s unwanted birthday toy, we finally got adopted!
But for tens of thousands of kids each year, just in the US, they never find that forever family.
They age out. And when they do, within just 1 year, 2 out of 3 of them are either dead, homeless or in jail. My hope is to reverse that statistic to 2 out of 3 having a mentor, understanding entrepreneurship, & owning their own business!
I want to use the same method that inspired me to start my own business. I had a mentor that believed in me. Showed me a path to becoming an entrepreneur, & built a strong foundation of faith that is a major factor in my success.
What are some of the challenges you’ve had to face to get to where you are today?
Manny: The day I first started my business, I was living in the back of someone’s house in the part of their garage that was converted to a 1 bedroom for me and my family. At the time, it was my wife & I along with our 2 sons. I had lost everything, starting from scratch all over again with a family to feed, looking to daddy to find a solution.
I made a promise to my wife. She has been there since day 1. She’s seen every high and every low. We had just become homeless for the 2nd time before finding a nice family who would take us in.
This was to be where I started it all.
There were times where I didn’t know where our next meal would come from, but I knew if I had faith, stayed persistent, didn’t give up, & became a sponge for knowledge, I’d find a way to win. & that I did.
Today, I’m a paid consultant to over 1000 brands worldwide, named, “One of the Best” by Facebook when they hit 1 million advertisers, & I’ve been able to serve over 30,000 students for free in over 80 countries with my virtual platform, the MANNYfestation: SCHOOL OF BUSINESS!
Do you have some practical advice for those people who might want to get started in a similar career as you?
Manny: Yes! If I were to go back and start all over again, I’d want to make sure I implemented these 4 processes:
- FOCUS ON A MOBILE STRATEGY FIRST! What I mean by this is stop taking people to your website first. Or your social media channel first. Or add them to your email list first. Those methods are all necessary to build a brand, but each of those methods wastes at least 80% of your efforts in follow-up. Simply because of open rates & reach rates. Get cell phone numbers first. 98% open rate within 5 minutes. Everything else, secondary! Thank me later 😉
- SERVE YOUR WAY TO SUCCESS! If you plan on going into business, you will need to create sales. Otherwise, you just have a hobby. 80% of your sales will come after at least 5 contacts of value. Only 2% of your sales will come on the 1st contact. This is why I say SERVE FIRST! It’s a lot easier to get a cell phone number than a credit card number. Start there. Build the relationship, & focus on solving a problem vs selling a product or service.
- BECOME A SPONGE FOR KNOWLEDGE! The best teachers are the best learners! Get in rooms where you are not the smartest in the room as many times as you can! This is where you’ll grow & create valuable collaborative opportunities with people who are already influential to the market you want to reach!
- STOP WAITING FOR PERMISSION TO BUILD SOMEONE ELSE’S DREAM! If you haven’t ventured out to build & launch that idea that’s been in the back of your head for years, it’s time! You are not given ideas to take them to the grave. The world is hungry for solutions. If you have one, get it out there! It’s hard to win when you have to ask for permission to build someone else’s dream! This was one of my main inspirations to starting my own business! I really disliked the idea of asking for permission to attend my kids’ field trips!
What are some of the quotes that make you feel most inspired?
Manny: One of my favorite quotes for people who live in FOMO… “There are ALWAYS more opportunities!” Don’t think that because you missed out on something, that you’ve lost any chance to win. Quite the contrary, I’ve noticed the opportunities I’ve ‘missed’ were some of the best ones because it led me to another great opportunity I never saw coming!
Another great quote I live by is “Always remember, you’re too blessed to be stressed!” As entrepreneurs, we can find ourselves in an emotional rollercoaster of chaos & blessings depending on the season but if you look back at the last 5 years at any point in your life, you’ll see what really mattered. Focus on the little things. The time with family, the ability to put food on the table, the ability to flip the lights on at will.
The life you live today, the ability to even just read this article, billions of people around the world only wish they had the opportunity.
Starting your own business is hard, what would you recommend someone should do when getting started?
Manny: 3 things: mentorship, entrepreneurship, & faith.
Find a mentor. Someone who has already walked the path you are attempting to journey & is willing to teach you. They’re usually at least 10 years ahead of you.
Entrepreneurship will be your vehicle to building your own dream vs. waiting for permission to build someone else’s.
Faith is your foundation to understanding you are building something bigger than you. Your story is not the end. It’s only the beginning. The chaos you’ve been through will become someone else’s survival guide. You’ve already survived 100% of what life has thrown at you. Remember that.
Currently, what is the big message you’d like to highlight?
Manny: You really can serve your way to success if you remind yourself every day you are too blessed to be stressed!
We see life as an obstacle course that we are always trying to win. Rather, to me at least, life is a road trip, meant to be enjoyed with others, explored, stop every now and then to get rest & some amazing food!
We will find what we are truly passionate about when we pursue a life in servitude of others. Bring other people happiness & you will undoubtedly find your own.
Thanks for the interview! What is the best way for someone to reach you if they are interested in working with you?
Manny: Feel free to text if you’d like reach me directly: +1-714-369-8528 or you can connect with me here www.MANNYfestation.com