In this Mentor Spotlight get to know our Endeavor Mentor Patrick Mork, CEO Coach | Speaker | 3x Tech CMO

Why did you decide to join the Endeavor Network?

My purpose as a human being, leader, and mentor is to help people live lives of meaning and purpose and I can find no better way to do that than to mentor the next generation of great entrepreneurs who build companies that will not only solve major problems but also make our world a better place in the process.  I love Endeavor’s focus on building scalable and disruptive companies but, more importantly, on giving back and paying it forward.  In my crazy career I’ve always found that the more I give back and the more I help others, the more others help me.  That’s the type of world I want to leave for my kids.  

Could you tell us about your background and why you became a mentor?

I’m originally from Belgium and I have spent the past 20 years working in tech startups, building and leading marketing teams, and launching products and amazing brands across 3 different continents.  In 2011, I was blessed to be poached to build and lead the team at Google which created the Google Play brand; I am a marketer and storyteller at heart.  In 2017, I had a major life crisis that brought me to coaching and inspired the subject of my book, Step Back and LEAP. At this moment, I made a major career pivot and focused on developing leaders in startups across Latin America.  In 2018, I moved to Chile and bootstrapped LEAP, a leadership development company that has impacted over 18,000 leaders over the past 5 years.

Apart from coaching founders, which brings me great joy and satisfaction, I’m also a motivational speaker on the topics of leadership, innovation, and high-performance teams. I have spoken at Google IO, SXSW, INSEAD, Walmart, and Scotiabank, among other companies. I’ve lived in 11 countries, speak 4 languages, and have an MBA from INSEAD.  I’m a huge fan of EDM, cycling, and yoga and I have two amazing kids who will be entrepreneurs in the future.  

What was your most challenging moment as an entrepreneur? Do you have any advice for entrepreneurs going through something similar?

Bootstrapping a leadership startup in Chile at 47 years old was probably one of the hardest things I’ve done – and not necessarily the most sane.  When the country subsequently went through a massive social upheaval and later COVID-19, LEAP almost went under several times.  What saved me in those dark times was a combination of what James Clear, author of Atomic Habits, calls “habit stacking” and a few other things, namely:

  1. Journal daily – give thanks to 5 things you are grateful for
  2. Meditate daily (don’t know how? Start with The Honest Guys 5-minute meditation on YouTube or try Calm or Headspace)
  3. 30 minutes of exercise every day.  High intensity.  No exceptions.
  4. Sleep 7+ hours a day.  Read “Why We Sleep” and you’ll understand why
  5. Get a coach and/or support group you can open up with and share the “unshareable”
  6. Spend time with loved ones/family – the love of our kids is priceless.

Is there any general advice you would like to share with entrepreneurs?

  1. Invest in developing your culture, purpose, and values in order to be able to hire only people who share the same beliefs and ethics. Always hire people who are better than you; people who are Hungry, Humble, and SMART (EQ smart vs. IQ smart). 
  2. Invest time and energy in developing and nurturing your people. For instance, I paid, out of my pocket, for coaching for ALL my employees at LEAP and it was the best investment I ever made. 
  3. Lead well and people will respect you. Develop well and they will love you forever. NEVER hire jerks.  
  4. Prioritize your stakeholders correctly: people, customers, and investors in that order.  Always. 
  5. Read, listen to podcasts, take courses, and learn voraciously.  When your people see you do that, they will too and you will develop a learning culture. 
  6. Give and ask for feedback constantly, as this will not only make you and your team better, but it will create psychological safety in your company which is critical for innovation.
  7. Embrace failure as learning.  If you succeed, great.  Kudos.  If you fail, you learn a ton.  
  8. Focus on your purpose and solving a massive problem. When you do that, the financials take care of themselves. 

What are you reading or what is a must-read for entrepreneurs? Why?

The Five Dysfunctions of a Team – Patrick Lencioni.  Lencioni’s framework for high-performance teams dovetails well with what we uncovered at Google through Project Aristotle.  When you understand the importance of trust and psychological safety and learn how to develop and harness it, your teams become unstoppable.  I have a long line of books which I think are must-reads for founders.  

These responses have been edited for grammar.