Happy Monday everyone! I NEED inspiration in my life. I feel at my best when I’m inspired. I’m blessed to know a lot of inspiring people. So from time to time on Monday’s I’m going to highlight someone I know that inspires me and interview them!
I met Brian in Gig Harbor Washington in 2013. I was doing photography for a friends wedding and he was one of the groomsmen. We got to talking throughout the course of the weekend and I found out he was starting up a coffee company. We’ve kept in touch and I’ve been inspired by Brian’s entrepreneur drive.
Check out Mighty Missouri Coffee Company online!
Brian, tell me what do you do?
I am a big dreamer and the President/CEO of Mighty Missouri Coffee Co., a startup coffee roasting company in Bismarck, North Dakota. I am also active in communications.
How’d you get started in that?
I had a desire to build a brand, and I was addicted to coffee. At some point, the two things collided in my head and Mighty Missouri Coffee was born. I grew up on the south shore of Lake Sakakawea, a beautiful lake and part of the Missouri River system, and the whole brand is built around those experiences. Coffee is a big world and I took classes and job shadowed some great folks, but otherwise, sort of paved my own way.
What is the most amazing thing you’ve seen?
Starting a business has been an exercise in faith. I think it sort of took some people for a loop because it is an uncommon career choice, and it’s come with enormous challenges, especially having started from scratch. But at every impassable obstacle, something happens that helps the business move forward.
What is the most heart warming thing you’ve seen?
I recently had the pleasure of starting a line of coffee with friends at Blood:Water, an organization working to end the HIV/AIDS and clean water crises in Sub-Saharan Africa. They were really kind in helping see it through, and it’s been an amazing experience so far, reaching outside of our little land-locked community in the middle of the continent to people around the world, and it’s been humbling and exciting. (www.mightymocoffee.com/coffee)
What is the craziest thing you’ve ever seen?
What is the most encouraging thing anyone has ever said/done to you?
I have been fortunate to find a great group of folks to surround myself… and I’ve found encouragement in each, but it is especially encouraging when someone who has found their success reaches out to help me get where I am going. You have to be careful what voices you let in the room, because the loudest one usually wins. I think it’s really important to fill your head with positive noise because it doesn’t take long to get dragged down. It’s also encouraging to encourage others, strange as it may seem.
What’s your biggest mistake?
I allow myself only one gigantic mistake per day, because it was getting out of hand! Mistakes are the quickest way to learn, and the bigger the mistake the bigger the lesson. I think my biggest mistake in recent memory was an epic miscommunication where each party expected something different out of the other. It caused a lot of stress and I’m still working it out… but through that process I think the vision has become even more refined with even greater possibilities. That’s looking at it positively! But, lesson learned – clarity is important.
What’s your biggest struggle and how did you overcome it?
Building a company is a struggle every day because it’s you against yourself, to some extent. There’s a lot of self-doubt and “what am I doing?!” going on. I think it’s important to make things to look forward to and to create stair-step goals to achieve the big ones… otherwise you get lost in this sea of possibility and that is paralyzing.
What keeps you inspired to keep going/creating/working?
I look up to some really great artists who are good at what they do, and that is inspirational. I actually am pretty in tune with the professional surf scene, which is weird having lived in North Dakota my whole life (and never touched a surf board). But there are some pro surfers who have built a big brand and done some incredible things. And there’s something about me and water… I don’t know what it is, but to watch Noah Snyder or Matt Beacham or the Hobgood Brothers doing their thing… that’s inspiring. Strange but true.
It’s also been important for me to make space for pure fun – something to totally disengage my mind from work. Usually, that’s been swimming, biking, or running, but lately I’ve thrown spikeball and water sports into the mix.
Who or what resource has been inspiring you lately?
My family is a big inspiration – my mom and dad are great examples of living selflessly, always helping and volunteering their time. They teach me a lot. My brother is a big inspiration as well. He’s overcome more than I think I could and does it with a big grin and great sense of humor.
Michael Jordan is still a big deal… so I would definitely add Space Jam. At least the Space Jam soundtrack. That mix has inspired me for 20 years.
Space Jam! Haha. What gear have you been using that you are loving?
Sanuks keep me comfortable through it all.
What disciplines in life do you depend on to be consistent?
My spirituality. Work is spiritual, play is spiritual. If I’m inconsistent in that, then I don’t even have a direction in the morning (which has happened).
What does your average day look like?
I roast a lot of coffee in a week and have an office there, too. Every day is different, but it’s been good. Recently, we added a new distribution channel that helps keep me off the road doing deliveries, which has been an enormous time saver.
Any encouragement for people wanting to get into a career like you are in?
Anybody can be an entrepreneur, but the people I’ve found to be most successful are good communicators. Have fun with what you do because fun is contagious, and more people become more excited about your brand.
If you had a million dollars what would you do with it?
I would try to find its rightful owner.
What’s your most recent go to favorite food/restaurant?
For Bismarck – a place called Oahu. It’s a Hawaiian grill and sushi bar. Super good. There’s also a café in town I like called the Little Cottage. I get a lot of good thinking done there.
Whats music have you been listening to lately?
Inland by Jars of Clay
Medicine Bow by Jonathan Stark
New Constellation by Toad the Wet Sprocket
George Strait music because it’s summer
What tv show have you been watching?
What’s the latest movie that inspired you?
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
Share with us something most people don’t know about you?
I’m a big fan of Jimmy Stewart. Big fan.
What have you been doing for fun? A current hobby?
Spearfishing, with snorkel or SCUBA. Crazy fun!
Brian thanks so much for being interviewed and we wish you the best with your endeavors!