Pop Quiz, Monday with Joe Andon

Joe Andon

The Pop Quiz, Monday is a fun little exam that we love to give to savvy business owners. The examination is not a surprise after all since the interviewee already knew about the questions in advance. However, we can always pretend and have fun with the scenario of a young entrepreneur sitting in class nervously biting on their pencil. They are ready to take a pop quiz on a chapter that they were supposed to read the night before. Instead, they played Metroid all night on their SNES (Oops, this was me in high school). The real purpose of the pop quiz is that this is a fun way to introduce business tips from real-world experiences that you can not learn in a classroom. We want to thank our entrepreneur for being a good sport and volunteering their time to answer a few questions to help our community grow from their knowledge.

I want to introduce you to our guest today who will be taking our Pop Quiz Monday.

Can you please tell everyone your name?
Joe Andon

What is your job role?
CEO and Founder of Vuly Play

Tell us about your company?
Vuly Play creates, markets and distributes outdoor play products around the world that are unlike any others available. Our trampolines pioneered the safety and springless features that modern families have come to expect, our modular play sets are completely unique and customisable to suit any backyard, and our basketball systems are easy to adjust and, with superior performance.

What do you love most about your job?
I love that we’re getting kids off screens and out into their backyards again. Every day we’re showing that playing outside isn’t an activity that’s disappearing for our kids. It makes me so happy that we’re encouraging active and healthy play that also sparks the imagination.

What motivates you to get up every day and go to work?
For me, it’s all about challenging people’s perspectives and expectations about the way things are. Our motto is “Things don’t have to stay the way they are.” People once thought that trampolines were dangerous, rusty piles of metal and mat in the backyard. After Vuly, they don’t think that anymore! I’m motivated every day by the idea that we’re creating safe, new ways to play that have never been thought of before.

How do your co-workers inspire you?
Everyone at Vuly brings unique ideas and energy that help shape the company and keep our approach to innovation young and fresh, which one of the reasons that we’ve been so successful. It’s honestly all about a can-do attitude, hustle, and grit, and when they go above and beyond to build this company, I’m inspired even more to push on and display those qualities myself.

How do you have fun at work (team building, pranks, etc..)?
Group lunches – like sushi and wings – are pretty frequent in the Vuly Rec Room, where everyone across departments gets together for a catch-up and laugh. We’re also in the middle of expanding a Health and Wellness Centre onsite where the team can get massages, haircuts, etc. during work hours.

What are some of the challenges of your job?
The main challenge of my job is juggling so many competing demands. At any one time, there can be technical, sales, manufacturing and finance issues that require troubleshooting and my immediate attention. On top of this, many of our competitors look to infringe on our designs and patents, which is something that’s so important to keep a lookout for.

What are some lessons learned from a past project that you can share with us?
Having key staff is important for the success of any project. We’ve undertaken large-scale projects that just couldn’t gain traction because we just didn’t have the right people. Surround yourself with passionate, hardworking employees and colleagues who have the drive to see the company succeed.

What advice would you give to someone who is starting in your industry?
Be persistent. I can’t tell you how many people tried to explain that what I wanted to do couldn’t be done. Those people don’t know what you can achieve! Take advice, but don’t let yourself be persuaded into going in a direction that you can feel yourself is wrong.

Thank you for taking our pop quiz today. You get an A+ for effort. You can learn more about our interviewee and their business by visiting them on the web:


Author: Ricky Singh, MBA

Editor of The Startup Growth.

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