Josh Hansen - Director of Corporate Partnerships, HFE

Josh Hansen, Utah brings to his entrepreneurial arsenal a unique blend of business and investment acumen, a sharp strategic vision and passion for operational excellence. He co-founded and led both the national expansion of a successful consumer environmental and safety and services business. His leadership was directly responsible for top-line revenue growth in excess of 100 percent annually, driving nearly 20 million in incremental sales for the firm. Josh Hansen’s vision and leadership have helped build a highly successful multi-million-dollar investment management firm, by identifying and understanding key macroeconomic and consumer trends and has built synergistic investment partnerships to capitalize on those trends. Josh has built and fostered strong strategic relationships with key partners in the financial services sector, where he has acquired deep experience in various consulting and operational roles. His results-oriented approach and keen eye for operational excellence has allowed a focus exclusively on world-class opportunities, accounting for a proven track record of strong investment returns.

Currently, Josh Hansen is day trading and does a lot of consulting work, helping individuals with start-ups. He’s got a lot of different things going on, along with being married and the father of four, three boys and one girl, that keep him busy.

How did you get started in this business? What inspired you to start this?

I originally started with day trading, I saw this business more as a challenge. I have several friends that do it as a hobby and know others that do it for a living. The stock market, in general, has always intrigued me as far as how markets work and how the financial system works behind those markets. I started doing my own research and dedicated about a year to reading as many books as I could about how it all works. Eventually, I came to find that there was a specific style of trading that really fascinated me. What inspired me about day trading was that I was always in control of my own money. If I lost it, at least I could only blame myself, and if I did well with it, I knew that what I was doing was working and that I could continue to use that skill to make money, both in a good market as well as in a bad market.

How do you make money, how do you profit?

One way is specifically using a method of day trading called technical analysis trading. Technical analysis is really the interpretation of the price action of any given company’s underlying stock. Technical analysis uses models and trading rules based on price and volume transitions and different things like that. That’s the first way I make money – through trading. The second way I make money is through payment processing. I make money processing online payment transactions, and that’s an industry I’ve been involved in for about 10 years of my life. The fyn-tech(finance-tech) industry has been growing at a rapid pace for several years and doesn’t seem to show any sign of decline soon. It’s fascinating because the way payments are processed are constantly evolving, and every business needs to have a payment platform to process those payments. It’s been a business that I enjoy, and I know I can make money participating in.

How long did it take for you to become profitable?

When I started one of my first companies, we raised investment capital and basically diverted that capital into several verticals, it took me a little over nine months before I began to see a profit. Those were some stressful days. I think with any start-up there’s a lot of costs involved in building a profitable business, and usually, that means dipping into the red for a period of time.

With day trading, people do it all kinds of different ways. Me, I started with a plan to day trade for three months, doing what’s called paper trading, which is a simulation account, it’s not real money. Its the exact same set-up, everything works the same, it’s all real-time, just not real money.  I used a simulation account for three months before I started to go live. Once I went live, in the first month I was profitable. I wanted to go a full six months and just make a historical pattern. Overall, I would say I was profitable day trading at about month five. That’s when I got the hang of it, and I could show a consecutive profit each month.

When you were first starting out, was there ever a time you doubted it would work? If so, how did you handle that?

Absolutely. There were times when I had doubts, but I knew those doubts were normal and could be overcome. I think when you start a business there are several things involved before you ever launch that business. Having a plan is critical, but you need to be ready to shake and jive when things don’t go according to plan. Overcoming those doubts, I think, requires several things. It really doesn’t matter how much market research you do, or how many cost projections, models, sales projections, or strategies you have, once you actually hit the go button, anything can happen. I think what helps to overcome doubts is to know that you have done your homework, you better know as much as you possibly can about your business and all the parameters of that business. If you have that knowledge, you’re going, and you’ll be prepared to shift or change, when and if those original plans aren’t working the way that they should.

How did you get your first customer?

Well, with day trading, I really don’t have any customers.

At my previous position, our customers were really our clients or our investors. In order to find those investors, there was a significant amount of work involved in creating our business plan, our business model, that would attract the right investors. To attract those investors, we had to prove to them that we knew what we were doing with their money. That we knew how to invest that money in the right businesses and that we had an effective strategy to exit those investments when that time came. It took me about three months meeting with investors before I met my first investor who came onboard. I was able to show him step-by-step how we would invest that money and manage it properly. Once I proved to him that we could do what we said we could do, he referred others to my company, who in turn, invested. We were fortunate in that what we were investing in was performing as good or better than we originally projected. After about a year we had clients contacting us on a regular basis, rather than us having to go find them.

What is one marketing strategy, besides referrals, that you’re using that works really well for generating new business? 

One of the exciting parts of running a business is that you get to bring out your most creative side. Marketing has changed so much over the years that different marketing strategies work for different products. We’ve seen a significant change in recent years with social media marketing. This is an area I have spent a bit of time learning about because of its compelling results. Using social media as a platform to find new customers, we’ve been able to reach a much larger audience than before. If you’re selling a product people want, you can have great success marketing that product the right way on social media sights.

What is the toughest decisions you’ve had to make in the last few months?

The toughest decision I’ve had to make in the last few months would probably be whether or not to start something new this next year, in 2019. For example, a new business venture, which would really alter the current path I’ve been on and allow me to learn something different, that’s exciting to me. I’ve been playing around with a few different ideas for a while now but haven’t pulled the trigger on them yet. It’s tough because I know that I could make money doing what I know and continue to be successful doing it. I sometimes feel that I’m limiting my ability to expand and grow in other areas that I’m interested in. The tough decision for me is really trying to figure out what direction I want to go in this next year if I’m going to take the plunge.

What do you think it is that makes you successful?

Probably a few things, but I would say since I was a kid, I’ve always been driven to be really the best at whatever it is that I’m doing. I remember playing video games as a kid. I would start playing the video game, and I couldn’t stop playing until I won the game. Probably not the best example but it works.  When I set my mind to something it consumes me, I seem to eat, think, sleep and dream it, until I can make it a reality. To be the best at whatever you do requires you to be completely committed, and that means sacrificing a lot of other things to achieve that. I have found though, that if you’re not entirely committed, there’s a good chance you will fail at what you’re trying to do.  To be successful at anything you must be okay with getting knocked down over, and over, and over again, and despite it all be willing to get back up and keep going. Ultimately, if you want it bad enough, you’ll take whatever beating is necessary to achieve your goal. One thing I’ve learned and that helps me to be successful is each time you fall or fail, I think you learn an important lesson as to what not to do the next time. If you don’t give up in the end, I think anyone can find success at whatever it is they’re doing. One motto that I’ve always had throughout my life has just simply been to keep moving forward. That’s really helped me to be successful.

What has been your most satisfying moment in business?  

I don’t know if I have one single moment that was more satisfying than another. What brings me the most satisfaction in business is just the process. What I mean by that is, anyone who has ever started their own business knows there are a lot of moving pieces for that business to be successful. Being able to watch what started out as an idea become an actual reality is a pretty awesome experience. What makes it satisfying for me is to know that all that hard work, all the sleepless nights, all the times when everyone doubted you, you believed in yourself and your idea, and you found a way to make it work. It’s fun to watch it change lives in the process.

What does the future hold for you and your business? What are you most excited about?

Sometimes I think when you run a business, people get so caught up in the day-to-day, that they sometimes don’t see what’s coming ahead. Especially in our day and age when technology is moving at such an incredible speed, it’s important to try and grasp how that changing technology may affect you down the road. With payment processing specifically, I get excited when I think about the future because to me, it means progress. For the payment processing space, things are changing rapidly, most people don’t use cash like they used to. A lot of people pay for things with their smartphone, cryptocurrencies are becoming more popular to pay for things. With things changing so quickly it forces us to be on the cutting edge of the technology. It brings out a creative side to the business and keeps our minds sharp and able to create new and efficient products to give consumers to use every day. I’m most excited about watching a company evolve and create new and unique products that people actually want and will use. It’s exciting to test those ideas and continue to make them better and better.

What business books have inspired you? 

I’ve read so many books, just books that I’ve found that I always go back to and I’ve read multiple times. The first is Think and Grow Rich, by Napoleon Hill. The second I really enjoy, How to Win Friends and Influence People, by Dale Carnegie. A recent book I just bought called, The Obstacle Is the Way, by Ryan Holiday is incredible.

What is a recent purchase that you’ve made that’s helped with your business?

The Obstacle Is the Way, again, written by Ryan Holiday, that was a recent purchase, and I think it’s helped with my business. I challenged my co-workers to read it, and it seemed to have a very positive influence and effect on everyone at the office. I believe that has helped with our business anyway.

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