Bill Gates developed his interest in computer programming during his teenage years and became a millionaire around the age of 30. When Mark Zuckerberg founded Facebook, he was a young college student at Harvard. He eventually became the youngest self-made billionaire at 23-years-old. These hard-working, intelligent men became disruptors at a young age.
But how does a Christian become successful in the business world while still maintaining their integrity?
Sam Haynes, a young Southwestern Assemblies of God University (SAGU) graduate is making an imprint of his own in construction, demolition and real estate.
Haynes, only 28 years old, co-owns and operates companies in the Austin, Texas area. He is the vice president of C. Haynes Construction and the president of a company he started with his brother, Fastrack Hauling and Demolition. He also just launched Nordic Real Estate and has come under the guidance of some of the top real estate investors in the country.
Haynes says that his beliefs have played a vital role in the success of his businesses. By building these businesses with integrity, he is able to show everyone he encounters in business that there is a right way to do business in a world where many times only the bottom dollar matters.
“That’s what really separates us from the rest of the people out there…and that all boils down to doing things the right way and making sure every single day that’s who I am as a representative of our businesses and what we portray," he says.
“My life is not just something that comes out of my mouth, it’s something that I strive on a daily basis to be reflected in my actions,” he says. “I believe that business is a great opportunity to be able to show what you are made of…it’s about just showing with your actions that you’re actually different than the average businessman looking to make a dollar.”
After graduating from SAGU in 2014 with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and Marketing, he worked in Hawaii as the Director of Operations for several resorts. Haynes liked his job, but the intense work hours made him realize that he wanted to be in charge of his own schedule and “call the shots” in a business.
His brother had started a construction company that Haynes soon partnered on after leaving Hawaii, growing it to a multi-million-dollar business in under two years. Haynes became a business owner himself by aligning services that feed into each other.
“I believe that I had gained extremely valuable business experience in my career at a young age, coupled with the knowledge instilled in me from some of the business professors who took me under their wing during my education at SAGU,” Haynes says. “I learned how to deal with pressure situations, running large teams to produce highly efficient results, and marketing your product to the right niche.”
His role includes problem-solving, dealing with unhappy customers, goal-oriented financial planning, and consulting for any business-related decision.
“I handle everything on the business side of operations, overseeing business development, marketing, and strategic hires for each of the companies. That’s pretty much my day-to-day. However, there are rarely any two days that are similar with new curveballs thrown my way regularly,” he says.
For Haynes, being a business owner and partner with his brothers is the ideal work situation for his style of management and ultimate career goals.
“It allows my creative side to flow without the restriction of falling into a narrow lane of the corporate rat race. It puts me in a position to implement ideas and have the freedom to make mistakes while learning to develop, build, and grow according to the vision I have for the future.”
Haynes decided to strictly focus on business and his career path after spending his first year playing basketball at SAGU. He credits much of his knowledge and success to the business and marketing professors that mentored him.
“There were several people that directly impacted my career. I believe that they helped mold me into who I now am at such a young age,” he says. “They helped me open up my mind to see what’s possible, and taught me that learning is a lifelong process. With mentorship and the experience that I got out of college,... I learned alot about business and handling clients and marketing your product to the right target.”
One obstacle that Haynes faces in running these companies is scaling and the process of managing a constantly growing workload in a city that now ranks near the top in the country in growth on a yearly basis.
“Once you start getting on that level to where you’re running 20 to 25 jobs at once and your business is all over the city, profitability can drop quickly with just a simple mistake or lack of foresight,” he says.
When asked to give advice to any current business students, Haynes emphasizes the importance of staying focused in school and blocking out distractions and the things that are out of your control.
“If business is your degree of passion, just take the time to buckle down and develop a healthy routine while you are in college because that will, in one way or another, directly impact who you become after college."
Haynes looks forward to the ambitious future of his companies. He plans to continue building up his businesses, start additional companies in similar fields, and learn to become an asset to society and those who have big goals but are not sure how to get there.
“Being able to say I can build multimillion dollar companies, start charities, and help people that don’t know how to exercise their potential, that gets me up every morning. That’s exciting," Haynes says.
By relying on faith and hard work, Haynes has been able to become a successful business owner at a young age. As he continues to build up his aspirations, he makes sure to keep his beliefs and morals as a top priority.
“Our core values strive to grow these businesses into the largest, most efficient, highly ethical companies in central Texas. I’m excited…for the opportunities starting to unfold in front of me. There are limitless possibilities.”