Matthew Sigman – Co-Founder and President of Tivity

[quote style=”boxed”]Having McDonald’s serve breakfast all day long. Buy my own franchise, show how it destroys all other McDonald’s in cash flow and make it a worldwide phenomenon.[/quote]

Matthew Sigman is a hyper entrepreneur who’s trying to help people get active through finding others and athletic activities. He fuels his energetic mojo with human interaction and new ideas. He was recently a participant  in the first-ever StartFast Venture Accelerator in Syracuse and is presently a tenant at the NYU-Poly Incubator in Soho.

What are you working on right now?

I eat, sleep and breathe Tivity, a crowd-sourced knowledge base of local athletic activities curated by the people who know these activities best—the participants. We allow people to discover, connect and play with the people, places and events that fit their active lifestyles. Whether you’re a local, on vacation or traveling for business, Tivity makes it easier than ever to find something active to do and somewhere to do it.

Where did the idea for Tivity come from?

I went to the park on a beautiful day with high ambitions to participate in various athletic activities. To my dismay, I sadly wandered around and found minimal interactions and thought to myself, “There has got to be a better way.” Because I know people would be interested in participating if they knew of potential activities around them, the birth of Tivity.

What does your typical day look like?

If it was as easy as watering a plant and finding the literal fruits of your labor, every startup would be a success. Our hurdle is content vs. users, and we’re trying to crack the code. Whether I’m on the phone with potential partners or out with the street team understanding our customer, I’m always thinking about my customer and how to create a product they love. The customer is what every company needs to think about.

How do you bring ideas to life?

I’m all about getting input from all angles. The internet, my team and people I start up conversations with all inspire me. Having a good demeanor and engaging people on a level where they know you’re absorbing their input to create something huge is critical. That and working day and night.

What’s one trend that really excites you?

Gangnam Style is a trend that I hope keeps going and going. I love it.

What was the worst job you ever had, and what did you learn from it?

I’ve never had a bad job before. I always enjoyed the worst parts about the job. I’m a very positive thinker and always find the glass half-full. Everything should be a learning experience to improve oneself.

If you were to start again, what would you do differently?

Outsourcing is not the way to go!

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

I’m a big proponent of team-building exercises. Whether they’re high-level and professional ones that I’ve found online and read about or going out for ice cream on a hot day, once a week I like to bring everyone together for something positive and fun.

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

I’ve never failed! How dare you?! [Laughs.]

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

A lo mein food truck. Lo-mein-ia. (Disclosure: I already own the domains.)

If you could change one thing in the world, what would it be and how would you go about it?

Having McDonald’s serve breakfast all day long. Buy my own franchise, show how it destroys all other McDonald’s in cash flow and make it a worldwide phenomenon.

Tell us a secret.

The coffee table in my living room I found on the sidewalk.

What are your three favorite online tools or resources, and what do you love about them?

1.  Facebook – Really original; I know, thanks. Where else can you find everything you need to know about everyone?

2.  Feld Thoughts – Super-insightful and motivated, Brad Feld is a great serial entrepreneur and blogger.

3.  Tout for Gmail – It allows me to easily track my email and contacts.

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

The World is Flat: A Brief History of the 21st Century by Thomas Friedman. How technology and economic growth lets anyone in the game of the global economy.

Three people we should follow on Twitter and why?

1.  @TweetTivity – See what active things we are doing in your neighborhood!

2.  @NYTimeskrugman – Love to see when his next piece is ready—brilliant person.

3.  @FloydMayweather – It doesn’t get any bigger or more obnoxious than the best boxer ever.

When was the last time you laughed out loud? What caused it?

My CTO sent out one of his daily funnies, and it showed a Chat Roulette screen of some guy and a chicken, with the chicken saying, “Bawk, Bawk?”

Who is your hero?

My father, a genuine soul.

Tell us something about where you grew up?

I grew up down the Jersey Shore, and it is beautiful and not like the television show at all.


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