Imagine working in a small business that gets absorbed by a larger corporation. Your freedom and flexibility have changed and your nose is increasingly to the grind. You work hard, you’re talented and smart. You know the right people and they are ready to join you in discovering what we call liberty in this country: starting and owning a business.
John Sande IV went through this journey as he transitioned from his first employer out of law school. He sat at Starbucks coffee in Henderson considering a business name that tied to Nevada, nothing cliché or already taken. He remembered the periodic table we studied in our high school science courses. Why was silver Ag? He looked into it and discovered that silver in latin is argentum – a perfect name for a firm in the Silver State.
Recipient of a 2007 Reno-Tahoe Young Professionals Network Top Twenty under 40 award, John continues to pave his way to excellence. This young professional hit my radar when I started asking a few lobbyists in the region who they thought was excellent. John’s name came up a couple times, so I figured I would set up a meeting.
John has achieved dreams. From an early age his dream was to play football at Stanford; he set his mind to it and walked on initially as a line backer then moved to special teams, long snapping. He studied economics and minored in political science then moved on to complete a law degree at Santa Clara University. His career started at Jones Vargas law firm which merged with Fennemore Craig.
A true entrepreneurial spirit, John embraced uncertainty and took a little risk to open Argentum as the managing partner in September of 2014. Argentum took off as a government affairs firm with a legal component. Now it’s expanded to include more partners both in the North and South in addition to services in mass communications. In two years, John’s ability to foresee changing industry demands has led to the growth of his company.
Excellence Q&A with John Sande
Q: Number one tip to maintain excellence?
A: Honesty. The only capital you have as a lobbyist is information. If you aren’t honest and people question the accuracy of the information you provide, you lose value. It’s not worth it to go down that slope for a few easy victories
Q: If you advanced in your career, moved on to the next biggest and best thing, what specific quality would you look for in a person that would replace you with excellence?
A: Interpersonal skills and the ability to synthesize complex concepts in ways that other people understand.
Q: Overall, if you could name one strength, what would you say contributes most to your excellence?
A: Providing leadership in a collective environment where everyone has valued opinions in information sharing.
Q: What is your Myers-Briggs (e.g., ESTJ, INFP…) and how does your personality contribute to excellence?
A: I am half social and half analytical; 50% extravert and 50% introvert.
Q: What advice for excellence would you give your 20-year-old self?
A: Believe in yourself more. You are more capable than you think.
Silver Ag Photo Credit & Photo Courtesy of John Sande