By thinking big, you’re more likely to find exactly what it is you’re passionate about, and more likely to enjoy the process of making it come to life.

 

Adam is co-founder and Chief Rocker at Rock My World Media. A mobile industry veteran, software developer, and former touring DJ, Adam oversees the company’s strategic direction, product development, and short- and long-term growth.

Prior to founding Rock My World Media, Adam served in senior business development and product management roles at Qualcomm, a Fortune 500 mobile technology company. His clients included Verizon, Major League Baseball, and Universal Music Group.

Before Qualcomm, Adam founded two companies and toured as a club DJ, playing nationally and internationally.

Adam holds a BS in Economics from UC Santa Barbara and an MBA with an emphasis in Entrepreneurship from San Diego State University.

Where did the idea for Jolt.ai come from?

The idea for Jolt.ai came from an observation of the way in which humans and software interact continues to evolve. For decades, humans interacted with software in a largely tactile way – they clicked a mouse, tapped a keyboard, pushed a button. Now, people are beginning to interact with software in a more personal way. The mission of my company, Rock My World Media, is to help people live healthier, more active lives. That mission, coupled with people forming deeper connections with technology, led directly to Jolt.ai.

What does your typical day look like, and how do you make it productive?

I get up at 7:00am. I’m big into intermittent fasting these days, so I don’t have any breakfast, only coffee. At the office, my mornings are usually set aside for product and software review with my team. My role in these discussions is to clarify priorities, answer questions, and clear roadblocks – in short, to set my team up for success. During the afternoon, I focus more on specific projects. Right now I’m very product-oriented. “Product-obsessed,” I suppose, so I tend to spend this time on tasks and priorities relating to Jolt.ai.

The afternoons are also when I have 1:1s with my members of my team. Then I usually workout, come home, and have dinner with my wife. My nights tend to be split between PowerPoints and code-writing, or finishing any remaining tasks from the day. I go to bed around midnight or 1:00am, get up, rinse, and repeat.

How do you bring ideas to life?

The first step is research – considering an idea from all angles. One aspect of this is developing or clarifying answers to important questions: Why does the idea matter? How many people does it matter to? Why is it important to me that this idea comes to life?

Once you’ve sufficiently researched and examined the idea, you need to share it. Rookie entrepreneurs often treat their ideas like state secrets. Barring some kind of proprietary technology or service, ideas cannot be stolen. This is an execution business. You need to get your idea out and solicit feedback from lots of people. People in the same industry, people who have built similar products, people in parallel markets. Then refine your idea. Begin to build small pieces of it and continue to iterate. This cycle of research, feedback, and iteration is how I bring ideas to life.

What’s one trend that excites you?

It may not be a surprise, but I’m excited by artificial intelligence – greater sophistication between how humans and computers interact. For just one example, our bodies generate an incredible amount of data. More than we could ever consciously process. The insights that AI will deliver about ourselves will change the future of humanity – and it already has. Rapid advancements in computing power, bandwidth, and storage, however, may bring about tremendous change even sooner than we think.

What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?

Blocking off my calendar. Assigning specific tasks to specific time-slots.

What advice would you give your younger self?

I’d have different advice for different stages, but a universal theme would be “think big.” I’ve met with many entrepreneurs who say that their ambition is to make a million dollars. That’s fine, but it seems like they’re selling themselves short on the scope of their ideas and their impact.

By thinking big, you’re more likely to find exactly what it is you’re passionate about, and more likely to enjoy the process of making it come to life.

Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.

How critical it is to be outlandish. Or, said another way, the importance of standing out. Given the speed that information travels, and the amount of content people are exposed to, creating a niche for oneself is extremely difficult these days. In recent years, though, we’ve seen some figures very adept at manipulating media and capturing attention. This skill has well-served them. Had they feared being outlandish, it’s unlikely that they’d have found the same level of success.

As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?

Remind yourself why you’re doing this. Eric Thomas, the motivational speaker, calls it thinking about your “why.” Remind yourself why you’re doing this, and consider what you want to get out of it.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?

It’s a value as much as a strategy, but what’s helped grow my business is us caring about our customers. It sounds trite, but I think lots of businesses zero in on revenue first. They hold it above the satisfaction of their customers. That model is ultimately detrimental for long-term success.

What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?

I had a company that raised some angel investment and ended up running out of money. I overcame it by diving into what had gone wrong, and gaining much more experience. The cliches are true that those situations teach hard and invaluable lessons for entrepreneurs.

What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?

If this business already exists, it hasn’t yet found its way to me. But the idea is artificial intelligence for dating – literally what dates to go on. In every relationship, each partner has, of course, things they like and don’t like. This service would understand the partners’ respective likes and dislikes and cross-reference them with events, movies, restaurants, civic activities, and so on. It would automatically provide answers to the age-old question, “What should we do this weekend?” I briefly worked on building a service like this in grad school. I ended up deciding, though, that I was more passionate about other projects I was working on.

What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?

Freshly, the meal delivery service. The food is great, and it helps me narrow my portion sizes. Plus, I’m not an avid cook, so Freshly allows me to direct my time and energy to things I’m more interested in.

What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?

Evernote. I use it to record all sorts of thoughts, product ideas, to-do lists, and speeches. I even use it to record notes on restaurants. So months after eating somewhere, and my wife and I are invariably wondering whether we liked it, I can look back and be like, “Oh yeah – that was some good salmon.” Evernote’s like my own personal Yelp.

What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?

Hooked” by Nir Eyal. It’s the bible on how to create products that stick. It’s a valuable read for anyone interested in product development and consumer engagement.

What is your favorite quote?

Most recently, “Discipline is just choosing between what you want now, and what you want most.

Key learnings:

  • The ways in which people interact with technology are evolving rapidly. Think about what kinds of possibilities excite you and how you might bring them to bear.
  • Research your ideas thoroughly. Share them with anyone and everyone – experts, friends, colleagues, and skeptics alike. Consider their feedback as you refine, refine, and refine.
  • Focus on your customers. Their satisfaction is essential to your success.
  • Think big. Don’t constrain yourself by setting small goals.

Connect:

Jolt.ai on Twitter: https://twitter.com/Jolt_ai
Jolt.ai on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/heyjolt/
Adam on Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/adamrz/
Adam on Twitter: https://twitter.com/adamrz