From Bootstrapping to Bootlegging with Mitchell Hayes, Founder and CEO of Los Sundays Tequila

The Journey

Nov 10

23 min 58 sec

As Ernest Hemmingway wisely said, “The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them." But trusting blindly doesn’t come without risk and if someone ultimately proves they didn’t deserve your trust to begin with, it may already be too late.. That is the devastating lesson that Mitchell Hayes, founder and CEO of Los Sundays Tequila had to learn the hard way. “We had some people involved with the business in the early days where a lot of money went missing,” Hayes said. “There was no way for us to get it back. And it nearly sunk us. We were working out of my lounge room at home, around the dining room table. I stopped paying myself cause the money disappeared out of the account to keep paying the three employees that we had. The bank account literally hit zero twice.This was a sink or swim situation for Mitchell and Los Sundays. But, frankly, Mitchell was made to swim. He had been finding his way through all kinds of choppy and unfamiliar waters his whole life. Where did that grit and determination come from, and where did it ultimately lead? Let’s find out. Welcome back to The Journey.Main Takeaways:Compensate for your Weaknesses: Everyone has strengths and weaknesses and so does every business. Learn first what the demands of the industry are, learn your competition. Then take stock of your own store of goods; what are you especially talented at, what are your strongest skills?

Then think about where you might be able to utilize your skill in an area that your competitors are weak in. This tactic can be enough to toe the line with your competitors. Any Means Necessary: Every business owner comes across trying times and difficult challenges, but sometimes overcoming those things takes superhuman effort. Owning your own business will likely involve a good bit of personal sacrifice and struggle at some, if not many, points. Go into entrepreneurship with the mentality of getting it done by any means possible.It’s Okay if Dreams Change: What we start out wanting to do as kids is rarely what we end up having a career in. When you dedicate your entire childhood and younger adult years toward achieving that same goal, the transition to something else can be difficult. Know that changing your dream doesn’t mean that you failed at the first one, you just re-negotiated the terms of your dream. ---This season of the Journey is produced by Mission.org and brought to you by UPS. To learn how UPS can help your small business, go to UPS.com/pivot.

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