In the second part of their interview, George Passantino and Ofek Arush talk more about their role models as well as some of Quokka Brew's upcoming projects, including a Kickstarter that will be released at the beginning of April. As the market's first jitterless coffee, Quokka Brew is bound for greatness, and we can't wait to see what the company and founders achieve in the future!
How do you stay productive?
Ofek: “In the beginning we noticed that we would only take care of small issues rather than working towards the big mission. So what we do now is that we wake up every morning and write down on our whiteboard things we will not go to sleep until we accomplish that day.”
George: “We get to the office at 7:30, and in the first thirty minutes, respond to all of our emails and write tasks on our whiteboard. We are very organized now and on a very strict schedule, and that’s been the biggest thing for us. Also, focusing on what’s important. We constantly ask ourselves: Is this task I’m working on advancing us in the direction we want to go?”
Do you have any inspirations or role models you model your work style or personality after?
Ofek: “Yes, David Goggins. He defied everything that people believed; he showed us that there is no such thing as a physical or mental limitation. His biggest thing is that when your mind tells you to quit you don’t quit, because if we listen to our minds, we will only be able to achieve 30-40% of our true potential. If we keep on going--that’s when we reach the top. And I love that.”
George: “My parents are my main role models. From a business perspective, my role model is Herb Keller, the southwest founder. He was very into leading people towards doing good and creating an organization that did good things. Also, Mois Ali. Very smart guy, very customer oriented. For me, that was one of the biggest changes; listening to his podcast, meeting him, and implementing a lot of his ideas.”
What gets you up in the morning?
George: “I’m unemployed. No, just joking; I love doing this. I wake up every morning excited to do this. I think for me it’s like the idea that I get to work with my best friends on a company that I genuinely believe is going to revolutionize the industry. I’m building a coffee company that’s going to revolutionize the world.”
Ofek: “For me, it’s finally chasing exactly what I’ve always dreamt of. Since I was a little kid, I always wanted to have my own company, change the world, and do all these incredible things. For far too long I listened to people saying things like “Ohh, come on be realistic. Stay in school and get a job”. I did do all of that, and now I’m finally ready to do what I love and what I believe I was born to be doing. It’s just genuinely exciting.”
What are you most looking forward to seeing Quokka accomplish in the upcoming months?
Ofek: “The Kickstarter that’s going live on April 7th; we’re aiming to raise a good amount of money from there. Basically people are pre-buying our new Quokkas in cans so we can earn enough to do a really big run and start distributing to stores and stuff like that. The Kickstarter is going to be the kickstarter to our business, the real deal. We’re going to be there in the factory seeing all those cans being produced; seeing the process and not having to make Quokkas by hand anymore is going to be a pretty big moment for us.”
George: “We want to have the highest functioning kickstarter in the beverage space of all time. The goal is eighty-nine thousand dollars, and we want to blow past that.”
After a long day of work, what is your favorite way to unwind?
Ofek: “Reading a book. We end work at around eleven and have like an hour to read, sleep, and then start it all over again. In the morning we wake up at around six forty and meet at seven.
George: “Mine is kind of the same thing; just going home, reading, relaxing, showering, and decompressing. Thinking about all that happened that day and where we could improve--just focusing on that.”
Give us an interesting fact about yourself.
Ofek: "I just became a US citizen, which is cool because I always dreamed about the American Dream and now I’m chasing it."
George: "I misspelled my middle name on my college diploma. I spelled it Micheal when it was supposed to be Michael."
What is your favorite song to listen to while working?
Ofek: " "Dosas and Mimosas". We love that song."George: " "And Electric Love", that’s like the Quokka song."