Invigor8 as a company has had the pleasure of connecting with a number of big brand names, influencers, and networkers in a variety of niches, and each one of which had their own unique stories. However, when given the opportunity to interview Vova Tess, a 17-year-old entrepreneur from Brooklyn, New York, we graciously accepted. Despite his young age, he is a wise and more than capable individual, and during our interview, he even taught us a thing or two about what it means to be driven, the importance of self-motivation, and how rewarding it is to be disciplined.
What is your story?
Well, my name is Vova Tess and I am 17 years old. I was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. Before I was involved in drop shipping and e-commerce, I was a lifeguard. I knew I was capable of so much more, so I took the initiative to learn more about how to work for myself. “How to Win Friends and Influence People” and “Rich Dad Poor Dad” were my go-to books. To begin my entrepreneurial journey, I wasn’t sure what to do, so I figured I’d just start with Facebook. I utilized Facebook ads to market the products I was selling from Aliexpress, to then drive sales, and in 30 days-time, I was successful in bringing a store from $0 to $30,000. Since then, I have been building my own personal clientele, which now ranges from 15-year old’s in San Diego, California to 30-year old’s in Luxembourg.
When did you decide to take the leap of faith to be an entrepreneur?
Honestly, since elementary school. People laugh when I give them that answer, but truly I’ve had an entrepreneurial spirit for as long as I can remember. I used to sell candy in school to my classmates, and then when I got a little bit older and knew how to use a computer effectively, I would sell things in the house on Ebay. However, my TRUE success started this past summer in July when I stopped being a lifeguard and began drop shipping.
Were you raised in an entrepreneurial-enthused household?
Actually, no. My family is originally from Russia, where my parents were comfortable monetarily. We were a middle-class family, and that was satisfactory to my parents, so they never really tried hard for anything more. Not me, though. I didn’t want to catch the “middle-class syndrome”, and in fact, I’d like to rid of it entirely.
So why did you choose entrepreneurship?
Well, when I was a lifeguard, it occurred to me that at any given time, I could be fired and replaced, and then that’s when the hard truth hit me that for as long as I’m working for someone else, that will always be a worry. So, I took my life into my own hands and started working for myself. I never really knew what I was going to do, so I just tried a handful of things… and a couple thousand dollars and a few years later, I found something that works for me and here I am.
What are some of the accomplishments you’ve had thus far?
Since beginning my journey and in addition to the first store I helped get to $30,000 in sales in 30 days, I have grown multiple to that status now. I have learned and taught others how to be successful in this field, and I have mastered money-making skills including website design, product research, and marketing plans, and especially utilizing Facebook’s advertisements.
What would you say differentiates you from others in your field of work?
I am patient. It seems that everyone likes to put their faith in a “get rich quick”, and I just don’t believe that that’s how success works.
So, in the era we live in today, where it seems everyone is interested in multiple streams of income, how would you advise someone on which sort of business to pursue?
It really depends on what their goals are. It’s always interesting to me the hesitant response people have when it comes to investing, but I think it’s because most people think you must start with spending thousands of dollars. That’s just simply not true. For example, in drop shipping, you could start with $700-$1000 on Shopify, and if you have the right coach who knows what their doing, AND you do what they say, you could be profitable in as little as a week. It doesn’t always go that way, but the point is that it CAN go that way.
What are 5 of your best practice tips for those who are pursuing a business similar to yours?
One, in entrepreneurship you will fail, and you should expect to. Two, invest your time and money into a mentor because in the long run, they will save you money and time. Three, there is an abundance of money in the world, and not a single limit on how many successful people there can be. Four, if you see others doing it, it means you can, too. And five, don’t get stuck in your comfort zone. Always stay hungry for more and keep leveling up.
How do you personally define success?
For me, success is simply impacting the lives of those around you in a positive way.
Who would you credit that success to?
My success has come from the support of my parents and my brother. They constantly push me to try new things, to get outside my comfort zone, to fail forward and without them, I wouldn’t have had the courage to take the leap to start my own business.
Who are some other people who’ve inspired you?
I love following Gary Vee, Tai Lopez and Grant Cardone. I’ve really learned a lot from them!
What is your why?
That’s an easy one. I’m a 17-year old high school kid. If I can do it, so can you.
What is the best way for someone to reach you if they are interested in working with you?
Send me a direct message on Instagram. My username is @Vova_tess.