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Some people believe that making it in the world of business requires knowing the right people, making the expected decisions, or some other version of this formula. What some don’t consider, though, is that the reality of success in business often requires guts and the willingness to take huge risks, even when that jeopardizes one’s chances of making it at all.
Danny Tran is one marketing mogul who knows this to be true. The beginning of his story is pretty recognizable. He got a great American education, studying marketing and business at San Jose State University. He hails from Silicon Valley, and basically knew from a pretty young age that he’d one day come to work in a high-tech field. He admits he doesn’t “have the typical rags to riches story.” What his story does have, though, is a remarkable will to take a chance, even when there is no certain guarantee of a yield.
After Danny’s entrance into his career path, he found himself exhausted and simply unsatisfied with the day-to-day grind of a 9-5 desk job. One day, as if the course of his career as he once knew it was fated to disappear out of thin air, the startup he worked for ran out of money and Danny was left jobless and unsure of his future.
What’s inspiring about Danny’s story, among the many reasons he motivates others in the business world, is that he took this situation of being slung out of a career he didn’t find passion in and turned it into an opportunity to take some risks and enter the world of entrepreneurship.
Noting the uncertainty of his situation, Danny said, “On one side, I was ecstatic. It was my opportunity to finally try something new. Dive into what everyone is calling entrepreneurship…That was what I needed. But on the other, I was terrified. I didn’t even have a severance package.”
Some in Danny’s situation might see the severity of his job loss as a lesson to be learned: the tech startup world is not always a reliable way to maintain a job. But Danny saw his situation as an opportunity to rely on himself – to be the one that was accountable.
He started taking risk after risk, trying out different projects that he hoped would provide him with a stable career and financial package. And each time he tried, he ran into some form of failure. Even one of the few brand projects he ran that did have some initial success eventually went bankrupt and left him nearly dollarless.
At this point, he could have given up and given in to another job where he would have lacked the agency he so wished to have in his career. Instead, he took what might have been the biggest and best risk of his career and threw his energy and limited resources into what is now one of his claims to marketing fame – Highstoke Media – a digital marketing agency he founded, which now pulls in six figures.
What’s more is that Danny turned this insane risk-to-success into a chance to show other young entrepreneurs in e-commerce that it’s worth it to put your energy into ventures you’re passionate about. Now, he not only gets to say that he achieved his dream; he gets to say that he helps make it possible for others to achieve their dreams, too.
Among the accomplishments he now has under his belt, Danny is also the founder of a six-figure brand that pays for students to volunteer abroad called WARLD, and he’s the creator of both the Client Takeover program and the Digital Entrepreneur Community. In the span of around four years, Danny managed to find this level of success, and if that’s not an inspiration for young business entrepreneurs, I don’t know what is.
Danny is well aware of what led him to his success, and it didn’t have to do with meeting the status quo; it meant making his own status quo.
Regarding what drives him every day, Danny says, “Nothing great ever came from comfort zones. I live by this saying on a daily basis. I’ve realized that every time I force myself to be in new and uncomfortable situations, it’s when I thrive the most and where all of my great ideas and success comes from.”