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Here’s the NOT short enough version… TL;DR is below.

I’m a finance tech industry veteran that shifted back to online business, startup and investment pursuits in the last few years.

It’s not my first go-around on the startups and digital marketing front. I was the ‘web guy’ at a NYC design studio in the late 90s. But a trading technology startup lured me away and a long, productive run ensued. I worked in various roles, from vendors to a top investment bank and back.

Now I’m applying my fintech product and business development experience to building and investing in software and online businesses. Though, I can’t help but view the world of startup and online space through the lens of my finance industry experience. It’s sometimes exciting, other times inane but always interesting.

Superpowers of TomorrowJ Paul Hendricks - Finance Pro Goes Digital Marketing

I’m also fortunate to have a good grasp of the English language. For those that hone these skills, I believe that writing and research and content crafting can be superpowers. Our ever-noisier world makes effective communication a mission-critical skill, whether through writing or the spoken word. Content creation of various sorts is also a power tool (and personal indulgence) that has served me well in the past. 

And these skills are ever-more critical in digital marketing and business in general, given that producing quality content for communication with humans is also the key to success with the Google algorithm (and all answer engines). These machines are the new gatekeepers. You may control your message but they control who sees it. So, part of my goal with this site is to simply exercise those muscles.

Personal Scatter Plot

I’ll keep it loose, though. The site is a personal scatter plot of ideas. I’m not sure where the best-fit line will point, but I plan to incorporate at least two broad areas of focus.

Personal Scatter PlotOne will be to share my in-progress, mid-life migration into new business endeavors. My current initiatives focus on content site development across a number of niche verticals, and developing other digital assets. I put a premium on diversification of income and monetization methods. So, I am also building out my portfolio of private investments and alternative assets alongside my traditional holdings.  I’ll provide as much ongoing detail and color on all these efforts as is practical and (hopefully) useful.

The other topical focus of this site will be around self-learning and upskilling, and the challenges faced by those educated in the old paradigm but facing the realities of the new global economy. To wit, I will explore how a college drop-out moved to New York City to play music yet ended up working nearly two decades in the finance industry, from startups to a Fortune 100 investment bank. And what I learned in the process.

I’ve managed to do a lot with an average brain and below average qualifications, but I’m only halfway done. The aim is to grow as fast and as far as life and time permits, and to positively impact others along the way.

Conceiving and Co-Existing

Conceiving of and assessing an idea or opportunity requires both qualitative and quantitative skills. The online business and startup space magnifies the importance of both. Working in the trading and finance industry made me process-oriented and data-driven. But the humanities, writing and music are in my bones. Alas, the analyst and the artist can co-exist. And the intersection of these two also sets a general thematic scope for the site.

I’ve managed to do a lot with an average brain and below average qualifications, but I’m only halfway done. The aim is to grow as fast and as far as life and time permits, and to positively impact others along the way. But the people I meet on the path ahead will likely help me more than I can help them.

So, welcome to my new thing. If interested, please follow along. For those that do, thank you in advance for all I will learn and gain.

Btw, I also write about personal finance at Digital Downshift and you can know me better by checking out my personal principles page. If you want a bit extra then see my now page.

–J Paul

TL;DR?! Okay, here’s the bullets version…

      • Stumbled through school, never finished college, worked lots of jobs, played lots of music;
      • Went backpacking, moved to NYC, got first ‘serious’ job in finance, quit to get serious about music;
      • Started first business (retail), sold to partner (still going), had a family (twins rock);
      • Got a NYC design studio job (NYT classifieds!), managed web strategy (1995), launched first blog (1997);
      • Got next job in finance (via music), startup employee #9, rode two acquisitions to top global bank;
      • Co-founded fintech startup (2010), made NYC fintech fashionable, missed goal but learned lots;
      • 4 acquisitions, 3 spin-outs and 2 continents later, am prepping for fun and fortune in my next 50;
J Paul Hendricks looking into the distance at Yellowstone
In Yellowstone National Park you can watch the world change in real time.