The Business of Persistence
By: Vincenzo Sisti, Co-Owner of SunFlower LLC
The Creation of the Future
About eight years ago, I embarked on a transformative move from Gilmanton, NH to New York City to attend LIM College, where I would follow my dream of working in the epicenter of the fashion industry. Upon arrival on the first day of freshman orientation, the president of the college said the following to all of the incoming freshmen, “What you want to do now, is not what you will do when you graduate”. Being the ignorant, over-confident 17 year old that I was, that statement was null and void to me, or so I thought. Over the next four years of my life I had the honor to intern with and work around many high profile fashion industry leaders, learn from the best in the industry and establish a thorough knowledge-base in the world I had dreamt of being a part of since I could first remember. I thought my life was set and my path was already laid; I was going to work in supply chain management for a major fashion brand, at least that was the plan in my head…
The Tides of Change
Fast forward to graduation day in May of 2016, walking across the stage at Carnegie Hall surrounded by my fellow graduates, I believed I would go on to establish my own fashion-related brand or work for a major retailer trying to establish a more environmentally focused supply chain - I couldn't have been more wrong about where my life would take me.
Working in a kitchen the summer after college, I knew immediately that life was not going in the direction I thought it was. In the Fall of 2016, after months of searching and finally finding a job, my best friend and now business partner struggled but pulled off a move to Miami with hopes of establishing our first company and, let me tell you, it was not a fashion-related business; nor was it related to any, and I will repeat, any of my studies in school, but we persisted. After a rollercoaster of a ride working my first full-time job post-college - while simultaneously attempting to start and launch our first company - we had to call it quits. We went our separate ways and by some miracle, through both necessity and desire, found ourselves back in New Hampshire in the same towns we grew up in. We had no idea what the next chapter would bring; but once again, we persisted.
Fast forward about a year after our return to New Hampshire, we’re both employed by Tesla in their solar division. Though it was a great opportunity, we found ourselves still having a deeper desire to own and operate our own company, to enable and create more positive change for the world. After about 4 months of working at Tesla - doing something that we saw as beneficial for the world - we lost our jobs due to the company’s need to let go over 9% of their global workforce; but once again, we persisted.
About 6 months after being forced out of a great opportunity at Tesla, we founded SunFlower LLC with the goal to enable human beings to reconnect, recognize and rekindle their love and relationship with the environment around them. The rest is history.
Just Keep Swimming
Everyday I am amazed at the transition that has occurred in my life from the original plan of working in the fashion industry to supplying fresh produce and solar power to my community and beyond. Sometimes I get asked how or why I diverged from the original plan set in motion years ago to work in a completely different industry. My response is always the same, it was not on purpose, it was simply what I was supposed to do and it feels right. I was able to deconstruct the want and find the need. It's enjoyable and rewarding and, simply said, I get to help others and the environment. For us, looking back is not an option nor a desire, no matter the difficulty ahead and, as our favorite fish Dory always says, “Just keep swimming”.
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