247. His Emergency Software Protects Those That Matter Most
Security specialist Cole Smith reveals the priorities behind his school safety software in terms of juggling. “Your business and your hobbies are like rubber balls, but your key relationships and family are a glass ball. Drop the first two and they bounce right back up. Let that glass ball drop and it shatters to pieces.”
Cole is the founder of Tresit Group, a company that specializes in proactive solutions to help schools manage emergencies in real-time. He has spent his career protecting others as a member of the U.S. military and Department of State. Now, he is making his footprint in the world by giving teachers and law enforcement the right tools to keep safe those that matter most. His real job consists of spending time with his wife and four children.
How Did You Start Using Your Talents?
Born in the United States, the son of a petroleum industry official, Cole’s family traveled and lived internationally. “I grew up in Mexico and in Austria, and spent the majority of my time in a culture not my own. That experience itself taught me many things, but I gained an appreciation for people of different backgrounds and cultures who think differently. It gave me a passion to get to know people that think differently than I do. Cultures are very different, but when you meet people, you find there are core characteristics and values you can relate to immediately.”
The Most Impactful Turning Point?
Returning to the U.S. in his late teens, he set out at age 18 or 19 for Cambodia and the two-year mission that is customary for young people in the Church of Latter Day Saints (LDS), the Mormons. “The Cambodian people had just gone through the Pol Pot regime in the late ‘70s, early ‘80s. They were hungry for good news and for people who could bring them peace and happiness. What an example that was to me to have gratitude for the family and the upbringing that I had, and the communities that I was raised in!”
The Most Powerful Lessons Learned?
Even though he is focused on his emergency management software, and is learning his way around the online world, he boils his priorities down this way: “Relationships win every time. Social media are great. The internet is powerful. But if we can’t have that personal connection, I think we’re really missing something.”
Steps to Success from Cole Smith
1. Look for the core characteristics and values you can relate to in others, whatever their culture.
2. Prioritize your key relationships above all else, except for your guiding faith.
3. Focus on what you can teach children and adults about the best things we can do today to prevent worst-case scenarios down the road.
4. Value and care for the safety and well-being of your family and community.
On His Bookshelf
How Will You Measure Your Life? by Clayton M. Christensen, James Allworth and Karen Dillon
The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ, by Joseph Smith Jr.
Connecting With Cole Smith
“We will provide our emergency management system at no cost to the first school or person that reaches out to us and mentions this podcast.”
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