Nicholas Hall, 28, is on the cover of Fortune and GQ, and on the front page of The Wall Street Journal and USA Today. So why haven't you heard of him? Maybe because these prominent profiles detailing his Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award (in 2008), his record as a Senior PGA player (in 2020) and his election to the United States Senate (later that year) can be found only in Hall's "future scrapbook."
"The scrapbook keeps me on track with my personal and professional goals, and it also shows prospective clients what my vision is," says the Castro Valley, California, business consultant and broker.
Hall's low-budget, unconventional tactics helped him make connections with clients last year after he moved from Cincinnati, where he had founded a successful consulting/brokerage company, to California, where he knew no one. "When we meet someone, we tend to tell them about our past accomplishments, which are often rather limited when you're a young entrepreneur," explains Hall, whose company, Venture Awareness, introduces promising young high-tech companies in the Midwest to investors in Silicon Valley. "I want to let people know what I'm capable of and what I plan to accomplish in the future. Many times, customers and businesspeople want to help me reach those goals because they see how motivated I am."
That's not to say Hall doesn't have past accomplishments. He explains, "I come off as ambitious and visionary instead of an obnoxious braggart because I can show potential business partners I really do have something to offer them--it's not just wishful thinking."