Money For Lunch – Profiles of Success Interview with Sean Evans.

Profiles of Success Interview with Sean Evans.

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Tell us your name and a little about yourself. 

My name is Sean Evans and I’m the CEO of My Wine Society. I grew up in Davis, CA about 45 minutes from Napa Valley, visiting my families’ cattle ranch each Thanksgiving which would ultimately become the family winery, started by my uncle and cousin.  I’ve been a serial entrepreneur my whole life since first starting a company during my second year of business school in Oregon.  I sold that business and moved to the warmth of Southern California at the age of 25 to pursue life in a warmer climate and the lifestyle of California.  Founding my management consulting business almost by chance after a few acquaintances asked for help expanding their marketing and sales teams, I’ve been working in that space ever since, mostly on referral. That led me to the partnership with Skylab and the launch of My Wine Society.

Why did you become an entrepreneur in the first place?

I’d always dreamed of becoming a chef because I loved food and cooking, but also loved the idea of owning a restaurant for the business aspects and the community aspects.  While I still love cooking, I have not yet opened a restaurant… however I do still love the idea of starting a business and creating a community and a product/service where there formerly was nothing!

As an entrepreneur,how do you deal with fear or rejection?

I think every entrepreneur feels fear, that’s part of doing something new. For me, that fear is a sign that I am doing something that’s never been done before and the excitement of that helps you deal with the fear.  And rejection, you have to LOVE rejection to be a successful entrepreneur.  For every yes we get in any aspect of the business, there were 10 “no’s” before that, so it’s just part of the game!  As long as you’re working in a space that you’re passionate about, those no’s just continue to add fire to the engine.

What’s the name of your company?

The name of our company is My Wine Society, a social engagement platform for the global wine community.  I launched the app so that wineries would have a mobile solution for engaging their members and fans AFTER they left their tasting room.  A big issue I was hearing from my interviews with winery owners was that they didn’t know how to connect with millenials and were struggling to reach people after they had a great experience in their tasting room.  I think our app solves both those issues.  Additionally, for the passionate wine drinker, they now have a safe place to share stories about their wine journey, track their tasting notes, win free prizes and visit wineries around the world, all from their phone.

What exactly does your company do, how do you help people?

The name of our company is My Wine Society, a social engagement platform for the global wine community.  I launched the app so that wineries would have a mobile solution for engaging their members and fans AFTER they left their tasting room.  A big issue I was hearing from my interviews with winery owners was that they didn’t know how to connect with millenials and were struggling to reach people after they had a great experience in their tasting room.  I think our app solves both those issues.  Additionally, for the passionate wine drinker, they now have a safe place to share stories about their wine journey, track their tasting notes, win free prizes and visit wineries around the world, all from their phone.

What were the biggest challenges you have faced and how did you overcome them?

Every step of the way is a new challenge, especially with this project because it’s never been done before.  We’re intending to disrupt and industry and so by definition, there is no blueprint to follow.  Our partnership with Skylab has helped us dramatically in reducing the typical impact a tech company feels early on in development and because of that, we’ve been able to go to market much faster. The other obstacle as always is getting others to believe in the project, but we’ve tackled that through sheer enthusiasm and hard work and once you get a few people to buy in, the rest seem to follow!

What piece of advice do you wish someone had given you at the start of your career?

Be patient.  Life is long and if you try to get everything to fast, you end up doing a lot of things poorly instead of a few things really really well. And relationships, manage and cultivate your relationships as if they were gold.  With information now so readily available, the number one currency in the world is positive relationships!

Who are your biggest influences and people you admire and why?

Elon Musk for his ability to tackle gigantic problems, monetize the process and positively impact the entire world;  My parents for still being together and being SO supportive of all their sons endeavors; My business partners for continually having my back as I attempt to navigate our ship through the oblivion that is involved in creating something completely new; And my friends for putting up with my extensive absence in communication while I’m grinding away and still being there to hangout whenever there is time!

Name a person who helped you along the way?           

Many people have helped in my journey and continue to do so… my parents continue to believe in me through many failures and successes and still to this day sort through my mail for me as I’m always on some other continent.

What do you see as your greatest success in life, so far?

My greatest success is the ability to learn from my mistakes and not make them again.  I think any successful entrepreneur would tell you that mistakes are easy to come by and people love to point them out when you make them.  I try to learn the lesson and apply it so I never make the same mistake twice.

How can people contact you?

Probably the easiest way would be through my app, My Wine Society available on any app store.  Always checking message there… or on Instagram @theseanevans

What book would you recommend and why?

My father has been published 6 times, so I would probably recommend one of his books.  “Caribbean Prisoner” was just released and is a great one.  His name is Scott Evans.

How do you deal with fear?

For me, that fear is a sign that I am doing something that’s never been done before and the excitement of that helps you deal with the fear.

What’s a personal self-talk, mantra, affirmation or self-belief that contributes to your success?      

I actually have a saved station on YouTube that plays motivational talks from the likes of Tony Robbins and Gary Vaynerchuk. I listen to it every morning after my workout while I’m getting ready.  I’ve heard most of them before but I find that starting the day with someone in your ear reminding you to be positive and to chase your beliefs and never waiver… I think its important especially as an entreprenuer as you tend to hear “no” or “that’s not possible” or “that’s too hard” a lot!

3-4 Keywords or Tags, separated by commas, you want associated with your brand     wine, wineapp, mywinesociety, entrepreneur

Please refer a business owner or entrepreneur, include their name and email Jeremy Wong, jeremy@skylab.world

Dean Grey, dean@skylba.world


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