In business there is one decision I had so much trouble making, and that was leaving my prior job to go full throttle into Bravo. It was so difficult because it was a very good job. And like I said before in a prior Podcast, good can be a killer of greatness. I lay it all down on the table in this Vlog. I hope you enjoy it.
Guys, let me talk to you real quick on one of the hardest decisions that I had to make in my career. And that was to leave an existing job, a good paying job for what I had started maybe like two years back, and that was, you know, Bravo Concealment. So when I started Bravo Concealment, I kept working at my other job for about two years, maybe a little more over two years, thinking that I could, you know, juggle both. It got to the point where I had to make the decision that I needed to leave my existing job and just do Bravo full time.
And so that was a hard decision because my existing job was a good paying job and it had good benefits. It had sustained me and my family for that amount of time. I was there for 20 years. Now, I didn't get married till later, but it had sustained my family for, you know, a good 13 years or something like that. And so, you know, I had my benefits, I had insurance, I had all these things. So that decision was not easy, but I had to do it because the one thing that I couldn't live with for the rest of my life is the "What if?"
What if...you know, if I would've kept that job and just do Bravo half-heartedly and not wholeheartedly, you know, what if... I couldn't go on living the rest of my life thinking what if I would've gone full throttle? I couldn't go on living the rest of my life thinking what if I could have gone full throttle into Bravo? You know, what would that have looked like? Did I pass on a big opportunity? And the answer is yes, I would have passed on a big opportunity because Bravo is very successful, guys.
And first and foremost, you know, I give all the glory to God. I thank you guys for going out there, purchasing our products. Just making us who we are. You know, and then I have to thank my workers and the people that work here, I mean, they are just...they are awesome. I think Bravo has two great things going for it. Number one, the best customers out there by far. And number two, probably the best workers in any industry, I mean, you know the guys that work here, they give it their all, and, you know, they are committed to Bravo. Well, most of them at least. No, man, everybody here does a really good job. And so to go through life not knowing what could have happened, to me, that's just the worst.
And so I've said it before, guys, failure is a part of success. Don't ever be afraid to fail because you will never get to that next level. You'll never be able to climb that next rung on the ladder if you're not willing to slip every once in a while. You know, it just goes with the territory. It is what it is. And so a lot of people don't wanna fail. Trust me, I don't wanna fail. To this day, I don't wanna fail. But at the same time, it's almost like a bittersweet thing. It's failure's what takes you to that level.
Failure's what allows the phoenix to rise up from the ashes, man. I'm telling you, failure's what allows you to build that confidence within you because you sit down and you find out why it is that you failed, what it is that you can do better, and then you go out there and you execute it with that knowledge. Now you have different weapons with you, you go out there, you execute, and you kill it, man. You go out there and you take it to the next level, you know. And so now you can scale that because you learned when you failed.
Now, that's not a license for people to go out there and just fail on a daily basis, because I think it was Charlie Munger that said, "Failure's good. You learn from failure, but it doesn't always have to be your failure." Right? So learn from other people, read books, go out there, watch videos, go out. There's so much information out there where you can find out what people tried and didn't work and what people tried and did work, even in your own niche, whatever it is that you sell. So there's so much information out there guys.
But I just wanted to make that clear that that was one of my hardest decisions that I ever had to make in my life. It's to leave something so secure, something that I knew was gonna be there for a long time. It's a government entity, guys, and so I know it's gonna be there for a long time and it's not...let me just say, I used to work for the Post Office. I was a mailman. And so it's probably gonna be around for a long time, and so a very secure job, you know, very well-paying job, great benefits. But again, I couldn't go on through life thinking, "What if?" There's no way.
Let me also say this, I didn't know I wanted to be an entrepreneur until Bravo came along. You know, I always had it in me to go out there and do little things and work on stuff and sell stuff, and sell stuff on eBay, but never at this level. Never ever at this level. As a matter of fact, when I first started Bravo, I never thought that it would get this far. I never thought that it would get to this point. Now, as time went on and things progressed, I saw the potential and I saw what it is that we could do with Bravo, and so I jumped all in, you know, and I took the risk.
You know, nothing's ever secure, even my prior job. You know, I said that it was, but nothing's ever secure in life. You never know what's gonna come at you next. But I knew this and this is probably why I did this. I knew that I couldn't go on through life thinking, "What if?" That, for sure...that is more secure than anything else that I've tried and that I've done and that I'm doing. Is knowing that you gave something up because you were just too afraid to try it.
The hardest decision I've probably ever had to make, you know. Thank God my family was behind me. My wife, she's always supported me in everything that I do. And it's important that you have somebody like that. She always believed in me. As a matter of fact, she was one of the first to tell me that I needed to go in full throttle with Bravo. That Bravo needed me there. That Bravo needed me 100% all the time. Such an awesome blessing, you know, to have somebody like that that's gonna have your back regardless. And so that obviously helped in the decision, but it was still hard, and not knowing is probably the hardest thing.
So, you know, we did it. I went in full throttle. I had my family behind me. And we went in all the way, man, and there was no turning back. And it's still...to this point, we still have that attitude of, you know, let's just move forward, let's keep going, you know, buying CNC machines, buying 3D ROMER scanning arms. Those things are not cheap, they're expensive. But we had a vision and we believed in it. And we just doubled down and tripled down on it, guys, and we went full throttle. That's what we did.
There was nights that I was here. I mean, there was times where, you know, me and a couple of guys sitting here, in this very office, trying to learn CAD. Trying to learn how to build solids off of measurements and stuff like that. Just crazy stuff, you know. That's just one of the many things that we've done here at Bravo. You gotta go out there. You gotta grind it out. This whole thing of Monday to Friday, 8:00 to 5:00, have the weekends to myself or, you know, I'm gonna catch up on "Game of Thrones" or whatever it is that's out there, that's fine. But if you wanna take it to the next level, those things aren't gonna take you there.
You need to learn how to work consistently every day, every single day. I can honestly say that the only day that I didn't work as much was on Sundays because, you know, I truly believe that you need that rest day. But even on Sunday, sometimes, I would just go in there, and, you know, open up the computer and find out what's going on and try setting up things and getting ready for Monday. Guys, it's a grind. It is what it is and there's no way around it, because let me tell you this, your competition is out there, they're grinding it out as well, you know.
And the moment you think that you've got it, that everything is secure, is the moment that you start losing things. It's, you know, having a grip on something and tightening it so much that it just squeezes out of your hand. You know, you gotta hold on loosely, but you gotta hold on and you gotta keep holding on. And a lot of people think, "I'll just hold on real tight for a moment and that should keep me going for a long period of time." No, you gotta hold on, but you gotta keep holding on. And that's why I say you gotta have passion for what you do and you also have to have interest in it. You have to remain interested in what you're doing so that you can go out there and learn on a daily basis what is it that you can do to scale what it is that you're doing and take it to the next level.
Guys, by far the hardest decision I ever had to make, but I'm glad I did it. And so if you guys are out there, you know, contemplating, thinking of wanting to do something and taking it to the next level, go out there and do it, man. There's 24 hours in a day, 24 hours in a day. Go out there. You've got so much time in a day. If you have an eight-hour job, an 8:00 to 5:00 job, keep it. Do it on the side. You know they call it the side hustle. Go out there and hustle on the side. Go out there, work. All you need is six hours of sleep, man. All right?
If you go, "Oh, I need my beauty sleep. I need eight hours," then that's fine. You're just cutting out two hours of something that you could be productive in. So many guys only need four hours of sleep, whatever, it is what it is. But go out there. Get your six hours of sleep, go out there and work for eight hours, right? So that's 14 hours. You have 10 hours. When you get back from work, while you're at lunch, go out there and just start something, do something, whatever it is that you have interest in, and see if you can scale it. See if it can grow, and then just keep doing it. And then once you get there, detach yourself from whatever it is that you're doing right now, whatever job it is, and go full throttle if that's the case,
You know, some people, I'll tell you this, and I've said it before on my Snapchat and on my podcast and Instagram Stories, it was hard for me because I had a great job. I'm telling you, if I was flipping burgers...nothing wrong with flipping burgers, guys, I'm just trying to put things in perspective here. If I had a job flipping burgers, I would have left it a long time ago and maybe I would have started something a lot sooner. But I had a really good job and I just did a podcast talking about how good can be the killer of greatness. And that is so true because if you're in a good position, you don't wanna leave that because it's good and good is good. But great is great, so you have to make that decision.
I had to make a hard decision. When I was leaving, I heard people telling me, "Lenny, are you sure that's what you wanna do, man? Most businesses fail within two and three years of when they start." You know, I had people...I don't wanna say they were being negative, they were just looking out for me. But sometimes people think they're doing what's best for you when it can actually hurt you. And those things, they rang in my mind for a long time. I can still picture that guy telling me, "Hey, man, are you sure this is what you wanna do? Most businesses fail within two or three years." And he was just giving me facts, you know, but I refused to believe that. I refused it and I rebuked it, man, and I said, "You know what? I'm going in full throttle."
Now, I didn't go in there blindly. I had two years of running this business, and so I knew how much money it was bringing in and all that and where I could situate my family and we would be good. But it was still a gamble because, you know, things can be taken away from you quickly. I was in a good place and that was hard. If you guys are out there and you guys are doing something where if you leave that job, you can always get one, you know, within a week or two, then, guys, what's stopping you, man? I don't have the answers for everybody out there, but I'm telling you what worked for me and what worked for Bravo, and it wasn't easy and it's never gonna be easy. Guys, if it was easy, then everybody would do it.
You know what Amazon is doing? Amazon, you know, it used to be that you could buy a bunch of China stuff and just sell it on Amazon. They are doing away with that. You know, and people, you hear a lot of people say, "Well it's easy, man. Just buy stuff from China and sell it on Amazon." Guess what? Those days are over, man. And so, nothing's easy, nothing. It may be easy for a moment, but it's gonna get hard.
Now, let me say this. Things are hard, but they shouldn't be that hard. If I had to redo this all over again, I'd do it. Now I have knowledge. Failure brings in knowledge. You understand what it is that doesn't work or what works. And now you can go out there and re-do it again. A lot of people don't wanna start from the beginning. I get that, but listen, it is what it is. That's just the way it is. And so I've said this as well, "Mother nature laughs last." The market doesn't care and I correlate the two because they kind of act the same way. You know a blizzard will take you out, man, a hurricane can take you out, a tornado can take you out.
You know why it doesn't matter that... You know, my son, when he was young, through a song, he learned all the capitals of all the states, of all 50 states. You don't need to any more, man, you got a cellphone. What's the capital of Rhode Island? There it is. What's the capital of New Mexico? There it is. Whatever, you know, Texas, Austin...it's out there. Everything's been commoditized. If you don't know it, it's because you're just being lazy.
You know, go out there, buy some books, man. Just get some books, read them. Go out there. Well, I'm not a reader. Okay, well, then, fine, then so be it. Well, you know, I'm not good with numbers. Okay, then what do you want? There's no magical, you have to know...at least know percentages, man. You know, learn that. It's little things... You don't have to...I've said it before, you don't have to start perfect. There's no such thing. Well, I'm not gonna start till, you know, I'm 100% sure." You're never gonna be 100% sure. Go out there and get it started.
There's that 37%, 38% rule that businessmen talk about if they wanna invest in a company. If they're 38% sure that they wanna invest, they'll do it. Because guess what? If you wait till you're 40%, 50%, 60%, 70%, 80% sure, it's gonna be too late. Stop procrastinating, but be patient. I know that it doesn't sound or it doesn't go well, you know. You know, like the Bible says, "In order for you to live, you have to die first." What? What does that... Now, I know what that means. It's spiritual. Same thing here is... I'm not saying this is spiritual, but it's the same thing when I say, you know, in order to succeed, you have to fail. What? Doesn't make any sense.
Stop procrastinating, but be patient. What? So you want me to move, but you want me to slow down. In essence, yes, you have to move. There's always movement, movement. You have to be moving forward. Whatever it is that you're doing, you have to be moving...a lot of people move too fast. You know, there's a saying and it's an unknown. If you guys know who said it, great, but, for all I know, it's unknown. "There's no elevator to the floor of success. You have to take the stairs."
But a lot of people try to run up the stairs and guess what happens. You trip, you fall, you break your nose, and then you will never even walk up a flight of stairs because you're just horrified. Because you were breathing through plastic tubes for three months. Be patient, man. Nothing happens overnight. You know, yeah, Instagram. Well, it sold in two years for a billion dollars three years. Those are anomalies, man. That doesn't happen with everyone. How long did it take Steve Jobs to become the Steve Jobs that everybody knows? You know, it took him two decades, man. I'm telling you, guys, you have to be patient, you have to be real, you have to be true to yourself.
But you gotta go out there and do it, man. Stop procrastinating, stop sitting on the couch with your buddies watching "Game of Thrones," talking about what you're gonna do. Nobody cares about your "gonna" man. Nobody cares about what you're gonna do except you and your buddies and the guys that pretty much talk about "gonna". Nobody else cares. The market doesn't care about your "gonna."
You know how many people have come here or called me or emailed me, "I got a great idea," and I'm like, "All right, let's see it." "Well, it's just an idea." Come on, man. Ideas are everywhere, man, you know, and they're not even... I get it, there are some ideas that are great, right? But how are you gonna execute? Execute, show me that you're committed to your idea. How do you want me to invest in your idea when you don't even invest in your idea, you know? It's the old saying where "Why should I care if you don't even care about you?" And that's not, you know, etched and stoned that, well, he doesn't care, I shouldn't care. No. Now, you know, obviously, we're here to help people. But, guys, it starts with you, is what I'm trying to say. It starts with you.
Go out there guys, get it done, hard decisions. When you have hard decisions to make, you know you're onto something because the average Joe Shmo doesn't have hard decisions to make. And that's fine. You wanna be average? Do it man. And even to the...and, I'm not taking anything away from the average Joe Shmo, everybody has hard decisions to make, but I'm talking about life-changing, pinnacle. I'm talking about turning point decisions. Embrace hardship because that's what's gonna take you to the next level. Learn to embrace certain failures because that's how you're gonna learn. Stop procrastinating, but be patient. Go out there and do it, man. Thanks for your time, thanks for listening. Talk to you guys soon.
Rene Aguirre is the founder and owner of Bravo Concealment. Rene has been carrying concealed on a daily basis for over 8 years and has been a CHL (concealed handgun license) holder for more than 20 years. Finding a high interest in firearms for many years, Rene started Bravo because of the “lack of” a good concealed carry holster on the market.