Cameron has been featured in hundreds of newspapers, magazines, and television stations worldwide including Newsweek, Business Week, USA Today, The New York Times, Time Magazine, The Oprah Winfrey Show, MSNBC, CNBC, ABC, and dozens in Japan as well.
I have too much to ask you, so I will make it as brief as possible.
Thank you, that’s very flattering. For me, I’m more focused on “what’s next” versus something I did years ago – but thank you, it’s been quite the journey and that’s how it’s supposed to be.
You started your first business at the age of nine, at age 12; Cameron made $50,000 selling Beanie Babies over the Internet.
You made your first million before graduating high school, when your company was generating $15,000 per day, how was the feeling? What did you friends say?
I’ve always lived two lives: my personal life, and my business life. I’ve tried to keep both very separate and although the media attention doesn’t always make that easy, it’s important for me to keep them separate. So in one moment I may be in an important business meeting or on television, and an hour later – I might be an average 24-year-old at a concert or football game with friends.
Out of all your books, which one would you say has been your most successful?
By far, You Call the Shots, which was released here in 2007, was a very proud accomplishment for me. It really brought all of my experiences, and the lessons I learned along the way, full-circle and enabled me to share it with others. It’s always exciting to receive emails – even today – from people who are reading, or have read the book, from anywhere around the world.
Tell us more
Fantastic – it’s won several awards in different countries including an award for innovation from the Taiwan government in 2008. Next, it’ll be released in Japan sometime next year and several colleges and universities across America have adopted it for their business classes.
Describe your experience being a finalist on Oprah Winfrey's first prime time series, The Big Give, which was aired on ABC?
It was a great honour to be chosen as one of the 10 contestants but even more exciting to have made it through every episode and to have hopefully helped change many peoples’ lives for the better. Oprah’s mission to inspire others to give is a fantastic one and she is certainly someone I admire for her business acumen.
Describe your experience hosting the Season 4 of Beat the Boss?
If you look at all of my experiences, they are each very different. Hosting a television show (aired only in the UK) was quite fun. Television is definitely a fun hobby for me and I use it to create a platform that’s enabled me to help promote different charitable causes, financial literacy, etc.
What is your most memorable experience so far?
My Japan consulting experience when I was 15 would definitely stand out, as would Oprah’s Big Give, and all of my experiences are so very different – that’s what keeps it exciting.
What has allowed you to grow to such a large business while at the same time retaining an excellent reputation for service?
It comes back to how you want to be treated. Go fly on US Airways and you’ll know what not to do. It’s about customer service and the experience you’re giving your customers. Order a pair of shoes from Zappos and you’ll experience something fantastic. You have to create experiences that encourage your customers to tell their friends – and rave about your business. Being “good” isn’t good enough anymore.
Do you have any suggestions for coping with set-backs, negative experiences?
Sure, learn from them, then ignore them and push forward.
Do you have any favourite business related books that you can recommend to other entrepreneurs?
For me it’s business biographies – so as a kid, I’d read books by Donald Trump, Michael Dell, Bill Gates, Richard Branson, etc. Spending $15 on a book is the best way to get an education.
Out of all the entrepreneurs, authors, inspiration speakers that you’ve met, who has been your favourite?
Wow, that’s a tough one. I try and learn from everyone’s experiences and advice. We are all students.
How do you balance your time between doing so much?
Google Calendar synced w/ my Blackberry.
What are the 5 qualities you think every entrepreneur should possess?
- Not afraid to put yourself out there,
- Be naive as to what can/can’t be done,
- Creative to bootstrap your marketing,
What is your definition of success?
You are one of the most famous Young Entrepreneurs in the world today- based on your experiences, what advice would you give to a Young Entrepreneur starting their first business today?
In my book, You Call the Shots, it’s broken down into 19 chapters I call the “essential secrets of entrepreneurship.” The first one is “Put Yourself Out There” and the second is “Start Small” – those two principles are the keys for getting started.
What are your thoughts on the recession?
It’s a correction.
So what’s next for you?
I’ve spent my time deciding what the next step should be and I’m glad I have. It’s much better than taking a year doing something I hate.