Lessons Learned on the Path from Tech Startup Founder to CEO

2 min read • May 16, 2019 • Brock Blake

My grandfather has always been a hero of mine. He hailed from a small, rural farming town in northern Utah. He was very successful there and eventually became mayor. He taught me many things, but one of the most memorable was to remember who you are. “You’re a Blake!” he would say.

The importance of integrity and living up to one’s good name has influenced so much of what I do. It’s a guiding force that has helped me throughout my career from tech startup founder to CEO. And I’m not the only one who understands the importance of a name. Todd Uterstaedt, host of the popular podcast, From Founder to CEO, recently asked me about this as we chatted about a number of business topics.

On the podcast, Todd explores how founders overcome challenges to create successful businesses, and how entrepreneurs make the transition from startup to established business. For anyone interested in business best practices or a dose of inspiration, the podcast is well worth a listen.

In my recent episode, Todd and I cover everything from how my co-founder and I came up with the name Lendio, to how I recovered after telling my original staff of eight I wouldn’t be able to make payroll right before Christmas.

While I’ve made my fair share of mistakes, I like to think I’ve learned from them. It was fun to explore how mistakes become stepping stones, and how my team has leveraged challenges to create a stronger business model for Lendio. From our lean startup days, we’ve grown to 160 employees and have helped tens of thousands of U.S. small business owners get access to growth capital—not a bad journey from founder to CEO. Check out the full episode here or download it in iTunes.

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Brock Blake

Brock Blake is the CEO and co-founder of Lendio, the leading small business finance solutions provider in the U.S. Brock believes that access to capital should be simpler and quicker for small business owners, and he’s built a successful company around solving this problem. Brock leads the team that has facilitated over $10B in loans to small businesses. An Inc. 500 CEO, national keynote speaker, Forbes columnist, and Utah’s Emerging Executive of the Year, Brock’s dedication extends far beyond the boardroom. He has shaped a superior company culture with a humble and hungry team that is passionate about driving results and giving back. For every new loan facilitated on Lendio’s marketplace platform, Lendio Gives, an employee contribution and employer matching program, provides a microloan to a low-income entrepreneur around the world through Kiva.org.