BTU #64 – Anthony Garcia: Army to Founder of Guide-On, an Essential Veteran Resource

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“Me and Derek went in there and pitched to Mike [Maples] for an hour, 9am the next morning we had a term sheet. And we were about to die. We were running out of money – we pitched to Mike on September 10th, and we got a term sheet on September 11th. If you’re not used to taking risks, you’re going to have a hard time succeeding as an entrepreneur. I’m $240k in debt; my credit sucks; I lived with my co-founder for three years and we were in our mid to late 30s at the time; I’ve given up going to weddings, I gave up skiing and surfing for six years, given up love, the list goes on and on the sacrifice.”
– Anthony Garcia

Anthony Garcia is CEO and co-founder at GuideOn -a military veteran talent acquisition platform. He started out at St. Mary’s University, after which he served in the Army for eight years as a Medical Service Corps Officer and Medical Evacuation Pilot. After transitioning out of the Army, he received his MBA at Cornell University. Since then he has worked as a General Manager at SRI International and the CEO and co-founder of Adjacent Applications. He started GuideOn in late 2014, and has raised funding from Mike Maple’s VC firm – Floodgate, one of the most respected investors in Silicon Valley.

In this conversation, we cover a lot of topics, including:

  • Anthony’s experience with PTSD and candid advice for other veterans
  • The biggest mistakes Anthony made that made his current success possible
  • How Anthony raised funding from one of the best investors in the world
  • What it’s like to hire your father as your Chief Information Officer (CIO)
  • How GuideOn is a FREE resource that will translate a veterans resume instantly
  • And much, much more…

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QUESTION OF THE DAY: How can I make these episodes more valuable to active duty military personnel considering transitioning to the civilian world? Please let me know in the comments.

Selected Links

  • Two resources I’d recommend to any and every veteran are:
    • GuideOn – free resume creator tool and, soon, a candidate placement resource. What the White House has called “the Rosetta Stone for veteran placement”
    • Line1.org – built venue for veterans, non-veterans, corporations, and thought leaders to help veterans transition. Free guidance for all veterans

Show Notes

  • 3:25 – Anthony’s background
  • 4:10 – Anthony’s decision to leave the Army and how he approached that decision
  • 5:27 – Anthony’s struggle with PTSD and how he found a way through
  • 13:37 – Anthony’s thoughts on business school as it relates to entrepreneurship – how the network helped, but also how there are a lot of resources available now for veterans as an alternative
  • 16:53 – How Cornell’s network lead Anthony to the Co-Founder & Lyft and an introduction to Mike Maples that changed his life
  • 19:08 – An overview of GuideOn and how it’s one of the best FREE resources for every veteran
  • 22:54 – When Anthony first got the idea to start GuideOn
  • 26:35 – The most painful failures Anthony experienced after the Army and how that helped him achieve his current success
  • 33:03 – How veterans can work with GuideOn – FOR FREE – to instantly create a resume
  • 35:16 – Common mistakes that veterans make in their transition to a civilian career
  • 40:04 – Anthony’s advice for veterans about the fundraising process
  • 44:04 – What it’s like working with your father when he is the Chief Information Officer (CIO) of your company
  • 49:27 – Anthony’s final words of wisdom