Take bigger risks. Sometimes you just need to shoot first and aim second. Just go for it.
Gaston Javurek is a mountain mover and social entrepreneur. He founded No One Without, and alongside his partner, Kelli Dunavant, is bringing clean water to people across the globe through fashion. Your purchase provides one person with clean water for 25 years. One at a time. No One Without and Javurek both believe in the power of one and taking one step at a time, one person at a time, one day at a time.
Inspired by the movement of business models that give back, Gaston was driven to start something of his own. His desire to free those in need from the chains that bind them comes from a deep connection to people and all things nature. Javurek’s love of the outdoors and passion for adventure is where he gains most of his inspiration. He lives and works in Southern California, changing lives and learning new, innovative ways to run a business. The company is named No One Without, because that is his dream and life mission: to one day be able to say with confidence that no one is without.
What are you working on right now?
At this very moment we are in the process of putting together design concepts for our next collection. We are anxious and excited to be exploring the world of custom No One Without cut-and-sew designs. It is something we have been looking forward to for a long time, and we are ready to share it with the world.
Where did the idea for No One Without come from?
The idea came early in 2010 when I took a group of high school students I was mentoring up to Skid Row in Los Angeles for a short term mission trip. At that time, I was a partner in a real estate investing company and was itching to branch off and start my own business. I had no idea what I wanted to do or what “it” might even look like, but I knew I wanted to do something different. Little did I know that those next three days of that mission trip were going to not only change my professional life, but also my entire life.
I was a 26-year-old guy who already knew that there was a massive need in this world, but spending intimate one-on-one time with those who were hurting, and hearing their stories, ignited a burning passion in me. I was no stranger to mission trips, but for some reason I came home with different eyes that time. I left the real estate world and knew, without a shadow of a doubt, that I was going to combine my love for entrepreneurship with my love for people and those in need. My dream and vision were big, but my finances and resources were small. I started by selling my car, buying a yellow VW bus and using the difference to pay for the first run of T-shirts. I will never forget the first shirt that came out of the dryer. I still have that shirt, and it will forever remind me of where we started. No One Without has evolved and transformed immensely since that day, and we couldn’t be more honored and proud to be a part of diminishing the world’s water crisis.
What does your typical day look like?
Wait… people have typical days? That must be awesome. Ha. I’m kind of a planner and list-maker, and although I know that’s boring, I’d be a lost soul if I didn’t. I have the second-worst memory that I know of, so lists are a must. I start my day by brushing my teeth and start the work day by checking out that trusty, old list. The second I feel good about the way the day looks, the world decides to intervene and the “plan” goes out the door. I can’t work without music, so I put Pandora on shuffle and listen to anything from Journey to dubstep. Being that I’m in O.C. and Kelli is in L.A., we connect early in the day to divide and conquer. Seems typical enough.
How do you bring ideas to life?
Well, because No One Without consists of two full-time staff members, it tends to go something like this:
Me: “Hey Kel, how cool would it be if we did [enter new idea]?”
Kelli: “Eh… I don’t like it. We should do [enter alternative option].”
Me: “I 72% agree, but since that’s a majority, let’s do it!”
It’s that simple. Ha ha. No, in all seriousness, we are constantly coming up with new ideas and shooting them back and forth to each other. Some of them are no-goes, but we put everything we have into those with which we fall in love.
What’s one trend that really excites you?
What was the worst job you ever had and what did you learn from it?
I worked in the mountain shop department of a local Sport Chalet, and although I thought it was going to be my dream job because I was surrounded by all things awesome, it was painstakingly boring and I could not stand being indoors. I was fired for taking a nap behind the sleeping bags. The excuse that I was, “testing out the product to better serve the customer” didn’t fly. I was 16 at the time, so I learned that I should have scouted out the cameras first. But now that I look back on it as a responsible 28-year-old man, I realize that I should have chosen the tent section because the cameras never looked over there.
If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
Take bigger risks. Sometimes you just need to shoot first and aim second. Just go for it.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Find time for yourself! I used an exclamation point because it’s that important. I know more than anyone that being an entrepreneur is a 24/7 gig that never stops, but you must find time to get away and clear your mind. It’s vital for your sanity and will directly affect the productivity and success of your business. Don’t go booking a cruise once a month, but do get outside and clear your thoughts. I recommend a glass of Tennessee Honey every now and then.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
Three words: fruit-flavored envelopes. I dare someone to steal that; I’ll find you.
If you could change on thing in the world, what would it be and how would you go about it?
It’s tough not to sound too cliché or cheesy answering this question, but speaking from my heart, I pray to one day see a world full of people who genuinely just love and respect one another. We (myself included) are quick to judge, quick to act before we think, and slow to forgive. If we all would just open our eyes, ears, and hearts to one another, we would have a much greater chance at succeeding.
How would I go about this? Well, I’m only one guy, so I would begin by being a living example to the best of my ability, and by encouraging those who will listen to do the same. I am who I am today because of the inspiration of others; now it’s my turn to pass it on.
Tell us a secret.
I wanted to be a rodeo clown when I was a kid. Not a circus clown… a rodeo clown. There’s a big difference. So maybe I got made fun of a bit and still carry a little of it with me. Ha ha.
What are your three favorite online tools and what do you love about them?
1. Facebook: It’s how we spread our story to the world, and how we stay in touch and communicate with our supporters. This is a people-oriented business and social media is vital.
2. Google Analytics: Tells us everything we need to know about how our website is performing.
3. MailChimp: An easy way to keep track of your database and blast out emails.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
Aside from “The Hunger Games” (I am an unashamed male who thoroughly enjoyed the suspense and adventure/love story), I’d have to say “Make It Happen” by Dale J. Partridge and Darren T. Holder. First of all, it’s written in about a 22 point font, which makes you feel good about yourself when you read it all in less than a week, but more importantly, it’s filled with killer advice about starting your own business. It’s a great book from which to take some notes.
What’s on your playlist?
It has a variety of genres. I love all music. But to be more specific, I’d say anything but country. I’m not hatin’, I’m just not participatin’.
Three people we should follow on Twitter and why?
1. @Entrepreneur411: Brent Freeman is the leading social entrepreneur for online e-commerce platforms, and he is also a dear friend and mentor.
2. @richardbranson: He is one of my biggest inspirations when it comes to how to run a business
3. @TEDTALKS: I can never get enough of hearing from intellectual mold-breakers.
Who is your hero?
I know it’s said often, but my father truly is my hero. It’s because of him that I’m an entrepreneur, and it’s because of him that I’ve centered my business around giving. He is the epitome of a sound man, and I pray to one day be half the man he today.
What’s the most difficult part about starting your own business?
Letting go sometimes. You can’t do it alone, so stop trying to do so. Surround yourself with people who believe in you and your business, and most importantly, let them help.
When was the last time you cried?
A few weeks ago during church service for Mother’s Day. I was sitting next to my mom and realized how important she is to me and how much she has done for me. I couldn’t hold em’ back.