Jacob O’Conner is an 18 year old High School student and entrepreneur.
Jacob interviews and discusses how to achieve high levels of success with top entrepreneurs, professional athletes, and high performers.
How Did He Get Started?
Junior Year “Start Up” Program, first 2 hours of the day touring companies. He was granted seed money and started his own small business. He created a seat cushion for truck drivers for back pain and connected with a local company that makes medical cushions for wheelchairs. While working he had time for podcasts and music. Tony Robbins and Kobe Bryant were influences. He decided to model his business and career path after people he was hearing on podcasts. He started interviewing people, built a website, and started a podcast. He’s interviewed 75 people in 6 months, sometimes as many as 4 in a day.
He makes himself available before and after school, in the middle of the night or morning, whenever people can book a time.
Where did the drive come from?
Hype videos with inspiring speeches lead to researching the artists and speakers who created them. This shifted his mindset.
Favorite insight from mentors?
His first mentor Joe Koppeis taught him the power of just asking. Just ask for help, or just ask for someone to teach you something. Jacob asked companies for help with materials for his seat cushion business, and he was able to get all materials for free. He used the same “just ask” technique for his podcast. His consistent effort of finding email addresses, tagging and DMing has landed interviews with very successful people. Check out his podcast for inspiration.
What is the highest and best use of time on Earth?
Do what gives you enjoyment. Things that make you feel good are usually connected with other people, it will lift them up as well. You are more likely to be in a flow state, attack those joyful projects with a more willingful grind.
Career Clarity Questions-
Head on over to claritydojo.com for instant access to shortcuts showing exactly what to do with Research Tools, Email and Question Templates and Scripts to help get career clarity… What if you asked ALL THE RIGHT QUESTIONS TO ALL THE RIGHT PEOPLE? Would you get on the best path in the least amount of time?
What do you recommend for training?
Practice talking about something you are passionate about and record it. Working on public speaking and riffing will improve confidence and get comfortable with recording an interview.
What resources do you recommend? (sites, books, podcasts)
Check out Seth Godin. Listen to podcasts and read books. Jacob has a routine. He reads every night,
Are there any tools or skills you recommend I acquire?
A good sense of humor, laughing can bridge people.
Is there anything you would recommend me to do?
Follow up. When you network with busy people, you may be on their calendar but you need to follow up and show consistency. Develop a plan for follow up. Also follow up after the opportunity, be consistent and build relationships.
Do you have any advice for getting internships and meaningful work even at the high school?
Start. Make things. Stand behind what you make. Show it to people. Be detailed, put the work into it. People may hire you because they associate you with the work and may think you will put the same effort and care into everything you do.
How could you inspire someone who is hesitant to start?
The beginning may be hard, you may feel like a fraud. Trying to be someone you are not yet. Mindset change: say to yourself, “I’m in the process of becoming this person and achieving this feat.”
What’s your experience with scholarships/ financing college tuition?
Jacob studied hard for the ACT. He bought a 1000 page practice book 50 days prior to taking it and worked on it every day. He earned merit scholarships. He started the podcast, has something to show, real world experience. His podcast also earned him scholarships. He sacrificed time and committed to growth.
Best networking tip for college.
Reach out to people. Start a podcast, opportunities come to you. Jacob has had offers to work on projects, he won a grant, he was offered speaking opportunities, he was invited to build a podcast studio in a local business.
Jacob considers his worst mistake his favorite failure. He invested in an online dropshipping business and a course. He learned he needed more knowledge (and time) and a course of action to help grow the business venture.
Won a grant for his podcast, Hunter Brooks Watson Fund Memorial Grant, people 16-25 who have an entrepreneurial idea or venture they want to pursue. He applied and lost his junior year, but reapplied after starting his podcast and won. He was invited to speak at the donor event in New York, which is meeting his goals to travel and speak.
Check out Abstract on Netflix. Insight tip: Many of the featured professionals on the show jumpstarted their career by winning an award. What awards are available in your field and how can you find them?
Where can we find out more?
Podcast iTunes/Stitcher Venture Mentality
What would you say to someone who aspires to have a career like yours?
Don’t dwell on what you don’t want, but know what you don’t want and drive toward something that is worth your energy and time and fully commit to it. The amount of momentum, energy and opportunities you can generate is remarkable.