It’s hard to believe but we’ve officially turned five years old this month. Happy Birthday to Happy Joe! Our journey has definitely been an interesting one.
Happy Joe 2014-2016
When we launched in December of 2013, we were a non-profit organization on a kick ass mission to eradicate unemployment for military veterans. Our purpose was training veterans how to become WordPress entrepreneurs and web technology freelancers.
Happy Joe were pioneers in this space and interest in our program quickly exploded. We conducted training for over 400 military veterans and held six events across the country. While our focus in web tech was hugely successful, the challenges of funding our operations made us pivot.
HAPPY JOE 2016-2018
Despite not being able to bring in donations to fund our program, we continued the mission to serve our veterans. In 2015 we blew up our model and created a new one to become financially sustainable; The Happy Joe Military Freelancer Marketplace.
We had developed a talented community of military freelancers looking for project work. We also had a network of businesses needing web design help. Why not bring the two together? Happy Joe was able to launch a business to meet the needs of our military community and our clients with great results.
HAPPY JOE 2018-PRESENT
You might begin to wonder why there would be another pivot in our business if it was going well. It certainly seems insane, but I also could see a much larger opportunity and better way to serve our veterans.
In all my years of working with military veterans I noticed one recurring theme — the longing for wellness.
Many of the people I worked with have experienced trauma from their military service. This doesn’t mean all veterans have PTSD or physical wounds from combat, but most of us have dealt with circumstances many people will never fully understand. Anxiety to depression to anger to chronic pains are common in our community. It’s because of these stories that Happy Joe made the decision to enter the cannabis and hemp product industry.
Wellness in the military community is critical.
It’s hard to run a successful business or be an awesome employee if you aren’t in the right frame of mind. It’s difficult to find the strength to “drive on” when your body is riddled with pain. This is why we are firmly and fully committed to staying in the wellness lane for our future. Besides, our name fits this focus perfectly!
beyond the charlie foxtrots
Over the past five years, I’ve made some bad decisions and blown shit up. I’ve hurt people with friendly fire. And I’ve taken a few rounds and been hit with shrapnel myself. Running a business or a non-profit is never easy and it certainly gets messy.
It hurts to know these bad things have happened, but I have zero regrets in launching Happy Joe.
While I’d like to go back and do some things better, we’ve done something right. People inside and outside the military community love our products. Our brand truly resonates with veterans. We’ve made an impact in people’s lives in each phase of our journey. I’m excited for the wins.
IT’S BETTER TO FIGHT FOR SOMETHING THAN TO LIVE FOR NOTHING.
This quote by General George S. Patton is what drives me on as the CEO and leader of Happy Joe. Every single day of my life I will fight for our veterans and appreciate the sacrifices my brothers and sisters have made. Freedom is never free.
My hope is that this company and brand will really grow in 2019 and beyond. Not for the sake of growth or egotism, but so we can truly help people achieve the wellness they deserve. Lives are being changed by medical cannabis and CBD. That’s the reason we’ve risked everything to be in this industry. It could all come crashing down tomorrow but I’d rather fight for something than to live for nothing.
I want to thank everyone who has supported us, purchased products, shared the word, or cheered us on. It’s because of you that Happy Joe celebrates our fifth birthday.
Celebrate with us because it’s you who have helped us become what we are today. HOOAH!