RawrrZone Interviews - Justin Drummond
When most college students are enjoying their four years, drinking their beer and going to parties, studying their butts off because they waited last minute the day before the test or just partaking in extra curricular activities. Justin Drummond was playing basketball and essentially taking over the world. Rawrrzone interviews one of the youngest CEOs of our generation.
1) When most college students are enjoying their college years you are building an empire, what motivated you to do this at such an early age? How did basketball play a role in your success?
I understood that life will hit you hard after school if you don't prepare for it. I have always tried to be wise and think ahead when it came to the my future. I always tried to learn from other mistakes instead of having to make them myself. This concept motivated me to think deeper than the average college student, and prepare for life after college. I knew starting my business in college would increase my chances of success due to the time that I will have to build before graduation. Basketball played a big role in my success, it took me across the world and expanded by mind and taught me how to be leader. I was the leader of the team, and learned how to lead a group of individuals to achieve a common goal. I always kept a level head perspective with basketball, it was always a means to an end for me. Not end all, be all. Without basketball, I wouldn’t be where I am today, but it was only a launching pad.
2) Did you originally go to college to pursue business? What was your dream when you were younger?
No, I went to college to pursue the NBA or a career in criminal justice. My dream when I was younger was to make it to the NBA or be an FBI agent.
3) How has your experience as a mentor for the boys and girls club help you in defining your leadership skills in your current positions?
Mentoring at the boys and girls club opened my eyes to the ability to affect change in kids lives. Along with me being a high-profile basketball player in Toledo, this provided an avenue to reach young people and change their perspective of themselves. Also, I realized I was very good at public speaking and inspiring kids creatively. It gave me a fulfilling vibe that great and I wanted to continue building on that energy.
4) Where did the idea of the inspirationist come from?
“The Inspirationist” name came from the effect I would leave on audiences after speaking. “The Inspirationist” is defined as the one who inspires through Information, Inspiration, and Access to Opportunity. I fine tuned my inspirational abilities by having to motivate my teammates during the season and at times of adversity.
5) How did you become involved with Execz Suit Company @execz_suit_company?
It was an idea that I have always had, the biggest question was how I was going to make it happen. The key to entering the suit market is with a niche, ours would be providing the best quality at the lowest price. That was my mission. The mission was achieved by taking a trip across the world to Asia and found the best manufacturer of all time. Execz provides the best quality suits for the lowest price. We are unmatched in this market, and we will continue to grab our market share in the DMV area and beyond.
6) How do you feel about appearance in today's generation? How will your Execz Suit Company help change the cultures viewpoint on presentation in a professional setting?
Appearance is everything. You are judged by your appearance. Perception is reality. It is important and our youth are moving away from valuing appearance. At times, that is due to the cost of presentable clothing, especially in the professional realm. Also, a suit can change one’s perspective of how they see themselves. I want to make this feeling affordable and easy to acquire. We need to create more black professionals in our communities and this will definitely encourage that goal. Execz will always serve the community by providing people with high-quality suits at comfortable prices to encourage professionalism within our communities. We want to provide suits to young children suits so they can see the value in themselves and think about the professional journey that lies ahead. I want to change the perception of how young black men are viewed. More suits on our young men will help change the perception of others and themselves.
7) Tell us about SparkC? How do you feel like your time at SparkC helps you in your daily routine?
SparkC is a way to tap into my passion for safety and security. SparkC is a cyber-security and mission consulting firm that provides integration, innovation, and impact to the defense and armed forces. SparkC was my first company, and this type of company is strictly corporate business. I started this business with $400 so it has really made me discipline and understand that you don’t need much to start a business. DISCIPLINE! DISCIPLINE!
8) Your motivational speaking is it directly primarily to the youth? Or do you also look to speak in older more mature crowds?
I speak to all types of crowds. When I speak, I like to do my research on the demographic of the audience I will be presenting too. When speaking to young people, I tap into more of my creativity side. When speaking to those older than me, I tap into principles and process for success.
9.1) What goes through your mind when you speak?
This is a funny question. When I speak, I kind of blank out and am I in “The Inspirationist” mode. Of course, I know what I am speaking about and I practice so much it's kind of like muscle memory. I definitely stay focused on the timeline of my speech and some of the creative inserts that take during my speaking engagements, such as, my premiere “Inspirational Sound”.
9.2) Do you ever feel intimidated in front of your audience?
During my first speaking engagement at the District of Columbia Attorney General “Right Direction Event”, I froze up as I was speaking. I totally went blank and froze in front of 200 people, but then I played it off so smooth as if I was thinking. After the speech, people told me they thought the pause was cool because I was speaking a little too fast.
9.3) What do you do when you do not feel motivated?
I listen to “Inspirational Sound” which is my premiere inspirational product, you can find it on soundcloud. It is a new way to digest smooth inspiration, I believe it will be big one day. It will be on ITunes soon.
10) How did you develop the three C's of Spark?
The three C’s of SparkC is Character, Creativity, and Consistency. This is a message that I started off with when I first started public speaking. It was honestly how I got my business off the ground.
11) Thinking back as a child did you ever think you will be doing this and achieving so much in your future?
No, I didn’t know I would be starting a business and actually being able to survive off of my business. I always knew I enjoyed working hard and going the extra mile, for some reason, In my life i’ve always been doubted by others especially in sports. I have translated that same mentality to business. Nobody is obligated to give you anything, you must work for it and prove that you deserve everything that you get in life. I learned that excuses don’t do anything.
12) Without all of this who is Justin Drummond?
Justin Drummond is guy that loves to chill and work. I enjoy time with family and loved ones. I am pretty simple guy outside of the businessman. I rarely get to spend time outside of that role because work is life for me as a entrepreneur.
13) If you had to give a child who wanted to follow in your footsteps what would you tell them?
I would tell them start early. Start expanding your knowledge early in life, like age 10. Learn how the world works, learn about different professions. Don't believe that you have to wait until you get older. The smarter and more educated you are at a young age, the potential of your success increases. I started my business when I was 11, It was called J&J Snack bar. I started it with my brother and this helped us learn how we can make our own money. I believe doing that at a young age propelled me to directly diving into entrepreneurship.
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