As an entrepreneur, I think that there’s really no such thing as a job description, except to work all the time, constantly figure out solutions to problems, and figure out how to move forward. My job description is to get it done.
I once asked an accomplished movie director the same question. Movies amaze me because the director has 150 new people that come together for three to six months under incredible time and budget pressure. I asked him, “How do you lead under these conditions?” His answer became my job description:
“I do three things. First, and most important, is casting. Then I make sure every actor, department head, and member of the crew knows the story we are trying to tell together, so they can do their jobs. After that, I deal with any given day’s biggest crisis.”
I always say that my job is to hire people who are smarter than me, and get the world out of their way. In all seriousness, I play a lot of roles in the agency. I am the company evangelist. I work with business development on crafting top-line pitch strategies, and, of course, attend the meetings when possible, which I think they let me do just to humor me—they know I love meeting new prospects and getting excited over new products. I can really geek out over anything.
I am often the voice and face of the agency, the person interviewed or presenting on large stages. However, I've made a real effort to put others out there because we have some really amazing minds that the world will benefit from. I am responsible for keeping us on track for profitability and revenue growth, which sounds like the un-fun part of my job, but I find that the hard decisions in those areas are often the right ones for the long-term strategy for the company.
I oversee HR and operations, two areas I am very passionate about. I am always looking for new ways to make my employees’ lives better. We just added discounted pet health insurance as a perk for the company. I designed our office space, both times, and am leading the charge for the next space that will allow us to continue to grow and expand.
I am often referred to as "Morpheus Mom," a title I wear proudly. I am the first stop for headache meds, Band-Aids, or a lint roller, and am often consulted on roommate disagreements, pot and pan choices, dry-cleaning recommendations, and much more. So I guess the real question is—what isn't my job? And I love them all!
I’m sure if I asked my team, they would respond with the words “Chief Cheerleader”!
The first thing that comes to mind if you ask me for my job description or responsibilities is the In Living Color sketch, "Hey Mon," about the Jamaican family describing all their personal jobs. Like the pool cleaner, engineer, carpenter, and babysitter character, I have so many random responsibilities as an entrepreneur and bar owner with a young family.
I'm the chief executive officer, head of business development, point-of-sale computer technician, payroll auditor, Microsoft Excel master, pest control expert, negotiator, the guy able to type 60 words in a minute with my thumbs (no smartphone yet), political punching bag for liberals, martyr when everyone is paid except me, lack-of-sleep test subject, and most importantly, daddy-day-care drop-off-the-kids-at-school specialist. Hey mon!
I manage marketing, public relations, government relations, and industry affairs for Brooklyn Brewery, and mentor my partners Eric Ottaway and Robin Ottaway, the brothers who are the next generation of leadership of the brewery.