Cynthia Petion is a business development specialist and the founder and CEO of NovaTech, LTD, a successful forex and cryptocurrency trading platform. Cynthia graduated from college with a bachelor’s degree from the State University of New York in 1995, and her work experience has included product management, business development, sales, training, and multiple leadership positions. In her professional sales roles, she has consistently performed in the top 2% within the companies that she’s worked for in the past. On the business development side of her career, she has over 20 years of experience helping businesses develop into multi-million or even multi-billion dollar companies, some of which have been included in the Fortune 1000 list of largest American companies.
Cynthia is also an evangelist minister, having been ordained as a reverend in 2019. She runs TheReverendCEO.com, where she offers mentorship services to individuals and teams across the world on personal matters and business development. Cynthia Petion is also heavily involved in outreach and community service projects through South Palm Community Church in Florida, where she holds weekly services and volunteers to help feed homeless people.
Where did the idea for NovaTech come from?
My business partners and I have always helped other companies develop, but never could quite find one that we didn’t reach that proverbial glass ceiling with. The last business we were involved with didn’t work out for the owners, so we were left to find another business to help develop. After doing a lot of research, we couldn’t find anything in the market that we felt represented our values or how we thought a business should be run. So, rather than trying to find a company that fit our business ideals, we decided to develop our own company and do it how we felt it should be done—correctly.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
A typical day is less of a thing than a typical week or month for me. The days just roll into each other. At NovaTech, we don’t really take any time off, or get much sleep. Our days typically involve putting out fires as needed. Since we are a forex trading platform, that requires constant monitoring. We constantly check performance and activity to make sure that everything is as it should be. The rest of the day is spent mostly on developing new projects, answering customer questions, and solving customer needs. One thing we pride ourselves on is making sure that our customers are attended to around the clock. The service we’re providing is much more important than setting performance records or anything else. Without that, we wouldn’t be able to maintain the business.
How do you bring ideas to life?
We go through a lot of trial and error. We involve our leadership team quite a bit, and we have roundtables on a daily basis with the ownership, the founders, and the management staff. Before we make any major decisions, we usually like to run ideas by them and get some feedback, because they’re the ones that use the system every single day. Bringing ideas to life is usually just a combination of our team bringing ideas together, and then testing them out to see what fits.
What’s one trend that excites you?
We’re in the cryptocurrency space, and the trend I find to be most exciting is that crypto continues to evolve on a daily basis, and that we’re seeing more and more acceptance of it. Even the concepts that make people nervous, like ideas about whether or not to regulate it and how that might be done, are a sign that it’s being more accepted internationally. It’s one of the few things that allows us to touch every region of the world on an equal playing field.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
I am very relentless in my efforts. If something doesn’t work, I just either find a way to improve it or find a better version of it. Challenges are meant to be embraced, and failure is not meant to be feared. In fact, not fearing failure is an essential part of NovaTech’s business process. It gives us the freedom to continue to build and innovate creatively.
What advice would you give your younger self?
The best advice I could probably give to my younger self would be to allow other people to be part of the process. I’ve always been a bit of a perfectionist, and sometimes it was hard for me to delegate tasks because I wanted to make sure that every detail of things worked out well. But I needed to come around to the reality that things don’t always work out well, and I needed to accept that fact as just part of the process. As humans, the sooner we accept reality, the sooner we can move on with it. For example, building a business requires a team effort—it’s not something you can do on your own. So, I would try to teach my younger self to be humble enough to allow other people to help and participate.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
Money isn’t everything. Especially when you’re dealing with business, network marketers and other business partners tend to focus on the money. They don’t necessarily focus on the process or the growth or the education that comes along with it. They’re afraid of losing, and if they lose money, they take it as a failure rather than as an opportunity to educate themselves or to turn processes around. Every failure is a stepping stone, and a certain amount of failure is just a part of the process. But if all people concentrate on is money, they’ll always be disappointed. If they can make it about learning something and helping others, the money just comes naturally.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Don’t get comfortable. Never get comfortable. Continue to find different resources and different methods. As an entrepreneur, I’ve noticed that people usually focus on one particular aspect of things. They’ll focus on one business rather than an industry on the whole, or on building things one certain way and excluding all others. People can let their focus become a roadblock, because it doesn’t allow them to think outside the box or to become uncomfortable. It can encourage complacency. Building a business requires a lot of discomfort and taking a lot of chances. It doesn’t mean that you need to jump into things blindly, but you do have to be willing to take risks and try different things.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
A great deal of patience and a whole lot of communication. It’s important to set goals, and to make sure everybody understands the goals and what their roles in accomplishing them are. As a leader, you have to help other people grow, because the only way a business grows is if the people inside it grow and develop—CEOs, managers, everyone. It’s important that the line of communication is always kept open, and that, especially as someone in a lead position, you make yourself available.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
Well, I have experienced a series of failures, and that’s to be expected. Nobody does anything right the first time. A baby learning to walk falls on their face probably a hundred times before they learn to walk and to run, and I treat business the exact same way. Failures are expected, and it’s a learning process. If everyone knew what to do coming out of the box and did it correctly the first time, then everybody would be a millionaire—and obviously, not everyone is a millionaire. Speaking for myself, it’s about learning from my own mistakes, but also seeing what others aren’t necessarily doing correctly, so that I can also learn from their mistakes, too. You can get a jump-start on learning if you just pay attention to what everyone else is doing and what results they achieve.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
I think everybody should look into how to trade and transact with cryptocurrency on their own, without help. Even if it’s just purchasing small amounts and reselling it. Not everybody understands it, and it’s a market people tend to fear, but I would recommend that everybody take whatever bit of money they’re willing to sacrifice, and use it to learn to work with crypto. If everybody can find even the smallest amount to play with, it can be extremely thought-provoking and exciting, and as long as you don’t get carried away, it really opens up a whole other world of investing that they don’t teach you about in school. There’s a good reason that companies like Tesla invest so much in cryptocurrencies, and why even Overstock.com has been accepting cryptocurrency payments for years.
Cryptocurrency really bridges the huge financial gap between different economies and societies, and between people who live in poverty worldwide and people in the US who are considered rich. It bridges the gap between all of those societies, so that you can interact globally, and it’s valued at the same rate for everyone. It puts everyone on a level playing field, able to transact with one another seamlessly.
I’m not saying that everyone should give up their bank accounts and run to crypto. However, I think that it’s a branch of finance that would intrigue a lot of people, and I think more people should learn to interact and trade cryptocurrency without help from others.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
The best $100 I’ve spent is on a meal, hands down, any time. Whenever I can sit down and actually enjoy a good meal, it’s more than worth the money. It’s one thing that I don’t think we get to do often enough, especially when the workday gets busy. Just being able to spend a little time or money to get the kids and the family together goes a very long way.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?
By far, it’s our affiliate platform. The platform we developed is kind of a one-stop shop for everything. People can manage their business, see their stats, manage their investments, and more. It’s a program that we continue to build on and grow. Our forex platform is pretty standardized. It’s an industry standard, and it works well out of the box. But giving people the tools to actually manage their business day to day can always be a bit challenging. We built a unique platform so that our users can have all of the resources they need, while still allowing us to properly manage the business at the same time.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
I would recommend any book written by John C. Maxwell. I’ve probably read about half a dozen of them already. He’s one of my favorite leaders and business coaches because he’s also a pastor, and he’s actually one of the lead pastors at my church in Florida. Any time he’s preaching or coaching, I make sure to attend. His overall theme is about giving value to other people. Within that, there are also components of leadership and coaching and teaching people how to build a business, but he teaches that if an endeavor is not centered around spirituality and adding value to people’s lives, then it’s not being done correctly. I just love that business model. Even having only met him once or twice, I consider him one of the best mentors and coaches out there.
What is your favorite quote?
Not to be cliche, but I have Exodus 14:14 tattooed on my arm. It reads, ”The lord will fight for you; you need only be still.”
Sometimes, we fight battles that are fictitious—that exist only in our minds. We set up obstacles for ourselves because we’re too afraid to try and too afraid to fail. That verse is a daily reminder to me that we don’t need to fight every single battle, and that sometimes we just need to quiet ourselves, and that the solution might come from somewhere we least expect. Rather than finding a problem for every solution, just try to make the best of what we have, so that we can continue to build on it and improve it.
- Don’t be afraid of crypto. It offers immense opportunities that can’t be found anywhere else.
- Learn to embrace failure as merely a stepping stone toward success.
- If you let yourself get comfortable and set in your ways, you’re only building roadblocks for yourself.
- A leader’s role is to help other people grow. As people within a business grow and succeed, the business itself grows and succeeds.
Steve (Stefan) Junge hails from Germany and helps with the day-to-day publishing of interviews on IdeaMensch. While he and Mario don’t share a favorite soccer club, their enthusiasm to help entrepreneurs is a shared passion.