I had an interesting company exit when I sold our company. (cue egos and lawyers) One day I was the CEO. The next day, I wasn’t. No party, no handshakes, or fist bumps. I couldn’t let the team know how I felt about them or what they meant to me. What did I mean to them? Anything personally? I don’t know. I’ll never know.

I’m an entrepreneur. After a short siesta to rest, I had another company idea to execute on. As I called all my old corporate colleagues, vendors, resellers, and friends in the business I found out I was in a similar boat to my personal dilemma with previous employees but professionally.

“Cool Dan, glad you got something new you are working on, let me know when it gets going.” Click. (remember when you could hear the click of a physical phone?)

What? It WAS going. I was doing it … right now. Yes, it’s just me but that’s where all companies start. Our relationship will make it get going.

What went wrong?

Personally, I didn’t know I had a platform, which gave me a sense of loss. Professionally, I was missing my platform.

Your company is a platform that allows you to change your world.

Here’s what I learned.

Professionally, when I was CEO:

  • I was invited to speak and be interviewed
  • People answered my calls
  • I got access to other CEOs and high ranking executives at a strategic level
  • I had an impact on people, products, performance, direction, and of a company
  • I gave insight and ideas for others to leverage their companies to do the same
    • Other people cared what I thought and did!

Personally, when I was CEO I had the opportunity to:

  • Impact my employees, clients, vendors, and reseller’s lives
  • Do good internally
  • Do good externally
  • Feed and create opportunities for families under our care

ALL while building an economic engine to make money and grow people.

You are not surprised by what you just read. But, you are not using the platform you have to the fullest extent.

Once I exited, I didn’t have a team to dig into the details, I didn’t get feedback or give feedback on things that were going to grow. I couldn’t lead, develop, or create change for others.

Don’t get me wrong, I love the early stage start-up trenches,  but those first few months as a solopreneur again are a wake-up call after a decade of a team with resources.

Because I didn’t have a company platform behind me my “friends” in business didn’t have the same need for me as I couldn’t do anything for them (or so they thought). I was looking for something from them and became another annoying voice amongst all the noise.

I was humbled.

From conversations with retired business owners, it is much the same. Without your platform, your opportunity to impact and influence is diminished.

Your biggest opportunity to impact the world is right now while you still are in the mixer, grinding, growing, and creating.

This is one reason why Acumen exists.

Right now, you have a platform with an economic engine to change people’s world. It could be 10 people or 10,000. THIS right here is the most impactful time you have in your life to create and live by values that will change how others think, feel, and do.

You have a platform to change your world. You can foster relationships that last a lifetime, help families buy homes, support children, do good works, change neighborhoods and cities. Don’t wait for after it’s all over. Be intentional and DO IT NOW.

Now sure how? Do it with us.

Dan Cooper
Post by Dan Cooper
August 6, 2020
Dan Cooper co-founded ej4, a video-based online training company, in 2003, and was its CEO until selling in 2012. During his time with ej4, he grew the company from a startup to a nationally-recognized firm, serving clients including Pepsi-Cola, Dr. Pepper Snapple, Honeywell, Monsanto and Syngenta. Channel partners included SAP and Oracle. As of the 2012, ej4 was serving 1,000+ customers, delivering millions of program views, was highly profitable and debt-free. Today, he is the CEO of Acumen, a mastermind community platform built for CEOs and Owners of strong and growing companies. He and his wife, Ali, have three children and attend Cure of Ars church in Leawood, KS. Dan enjoys running, all things soccer — coaching, playing and watching —and burning all types of meat on the backyard barbecue grill.