BTU #13 - Taylor Justice: Army to Raising $6M in Funding

“As you start to make this transition, -asking for advice is the smart move. Thinking that you have everything figured out or that you're going to be bothering someone learning about what they're doing that's the fool's road. I would urge people to not be scared of reaching out to people - if you don't, you're hurting yourself." – Taylor Justice

Taylor Justice is the Co-Founder and Chief Business Officer at Unite Us, a start-up that connects citizens with local coordinated services. Based in New York, Unite Us has raised over $6M in venture funding, and over 20 employees. After attending the U.S. Military Academy and serving for over a year as an Infantry Officer in the Army, Taylor was unexpectedly medically discharged from the Army. He faced his transition to civilian life years before he expected it, with no peers or classmates from whom to seek advice. Through a meticulous approach to reaching out to others, Taylor landed his first job in the Medical Devices industry, and then transitioned to the world of tech. While attending Columbia Business School he met his co-founder, and launched Unite Us.

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

  • An unexpected departure from the Army, and navigating a career search before his peers
  • Using a systematic email process to gain information and his first job
  • The advantages of client support functional roles and sales roles
  • What it's like to start and grow a startup
  • Advice for other veterans seeking to start their own business
  • Not being afraid to ask advice from anyone and everyone as a means of learning
  • And much, much more…

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Scroll below for links and show notes…

Selected Links from the Episode

Show Notes

  • [1:38] Background
  • [2:40] An unexpected separation from the Army
  • [8:40] The most helpful resources in his initial job search
  • [14:07] Advice for structuring an outreach process as part of a job search
  • [15:48] How the military most prepared and least prepared him for an Account Executive and Sales role
  • [18:50] The starting point of founding Unite Us
  • [22:25] Advice on finding and vetting a potential co-founder
  • [24:15] Whether to gain experience prior to starting a company, or do it straight out of the military
  • [29:12] The day-to-day life of starting a company
  • [33:30] Common misconceptions that military personnel have about starting a company
  • [38:25] How military personnel can benefit from Unite Us
  • [44:05] Biggest advice - don't be afraid to ask for help