Paul Rivera is the president and CEO of Def Logix, he built his own company from the ground up. Paul was born in the Bronx, NYC and grew up in both Queens, New York and Dallas/Fort Worth area of Texas.
The two areas he grew up in couldn’t be more different and he faced a lot of social anxiety. In middle and high school Paul felt there was a difference between the things he worried about and the concerns of his peers. Young Paul would rather figure out how to improve himself than impress others with something more material. Eventually at the age of fifteen Paul quit school and instead began going to the library. There he spent time reading on his own. He went from reading science fiction to learning about the physics, chemistry and math behind it.
In his twenties Paul moved back to New York for college and was working while attending school. Following in his hero Mr. Spock’s footsteps he took classes in: Logic, Philosophy and Computer Science. Paul fell in love with programming after building his own calculator application by using coding. Programming was a way to use computers to build things from his own imagination and engaging his creative side. He got his Computer Science degree in his mid twenties.
Paul speaks about the difference between New York City and the Dallas Fort Worth Area and some of the interpersonal differences moving to a less diverse area and not fitting in. Ron asks Paul what the missing puzzle piece that led him on the education path he chose. The conversation between Paul, Ron and Chris touches on different ways of learning and thinking. Paul shares about the school of hard knocks and researching, he shares about having to research excessively can lead to potential missed opportunities.
Chris asks about a challenge he faced building Def Logix. Paul talks about finding his way as a significant contract closed out, dealing with employees being discontent and having to conceptualize Def-Logix 2.0. Our hosts Ron and Chris speak about the burnout that can happen when tasks aren’t aligned with purpose. Paul shares that he enjoys creating solutions more than other tasks that are typically aligned with being at the top of a company. Paul had to learn to delegate more in order to grow the company. Towards the end of our conversation Paul shares some of his experiences with public speaking, something he was very uncomfortable with at first. It was necessary for him to get out of his comfort zone in order to keep growing.
Impactful Moments During the Show
00:00 — Intro
01:35 — Welcome back to the Hacker Valley Studio and welcome to Paul Rivera.
03:05 — Learning the science behind the sci-fi.
04:25 — Why Paul quit school at 15 and his path back to education.
06:00 — Calculators and falling in love with programming.
07:40 — Thinking differently about clothing.
09:05 — Thinking outside the box with logic AND intuition instead of logic OR intuition.
10:31 — Paul’s key way of learning.
12:20 — Paul on building his own company and challenges faced.
14:20 — What would change if he closed shop and started again?
16:30 — The harebrained ideas, creating solutions and finding joy.
18:30 — Growth and getting out of your comfort zone
You can find Paul Rivera on LinkedIn
Check out Def-Logix a cybersecurity company that does research and development, software development and secure networks.
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