Catching Up with Entrepreneur and Businessman QuHarrison Terry
The USA News team was fortunate to reach out to QuHarrison Terry for a video interview. QuHarrison is an incredibly talented entrepreneur who has shared with us key points in his life and career in this story. You can watch his interview above and/or read the interview transcript below.
QuHarrison, you are a remarkable, best-selling author, entrepreneur, marketer, businessman, technology, speaker, moderator, and host, and it doesn't stop there. Did your business acumen begin at an early age quick how did you get your start on spreading the word?
In many ways, you know, I got my first start working in the field of technology, just by experimenting with tech, I've always been a future thinker. I've always been fascinated by just the different things that exist in tech. And I quickly became enamored with the idea of being able to participate in the industry. And so at 13, I started designing curriculums that I could sell to universities. And it was a fun, fun gig, we started off with summer school curriculum. So most college universities have some core programming that they offered to the high school or even in some cases, middle school youth, and I had this brilliant idea of like, hey, if I had to go to summer camp, at least, let me get paid. And maybe at that point, too, I have a little bit more luxuries in summer camp, because I'd be one of the people that were putting on the event versus, you know, going into the event and just enjoying it. And that's what really got me started as an entrepreneur.
And I was able to take that into just various different fields and learn from it. So if I were younger, I would definitely try to find my skill set that I really enjoyed, that I could envision myself creating a superpower out of. And it's hard. Because when you're super young, you don't necessarily have all the nuanced information that you would have once you've been through life. And so you have to really lean on the people around you, have to be very curious. And it does, it does help if you ask and talk and communicate. And so the kids that are always sharing their ideas, they can be oftentimes annoying, but those are the kids that are probably going to figure out life quicker, because they just have more shots on goal to see things through than their peers.
We understand that you went to the University of Wisconsin. Was this instrumental in catapulting you into the business world?
So my time at University of Wisconsin, Madison, was instrumental in me figuring out that there was a world beyond just Milwaukee, Wisconsin and the Midwest that I had seen. And it's not saying I hadn't traveled before that it was just, I didn't, I just kind of knew the world to be, you know, there's places that exist beyond where you live. But like, everybody just goes on vacations in those spots, they don't actually find jobs, or they don't actually build careers, everybody just kind of comes back home and builds from home, because that's where you were from.
And when I went to college, that was different, you for the first time see all these different people in and they say that diversity allows for you to build a new perspective, because your experience is your experience, but someone else's experience is theirs. And you can't take that away from them because it's lived. And that's their perspective. But you can definitely learn from it. And you can integrate some of their fascinating thoughts or shocking ideas into yours. And you have a very, very, very big worldview or picture from that.
And so I started to develop my viewpoint of the world at the University of Wisconsin Madison. It was also some of the moments in my career where I was able to, you know, one, get a passport, shout out to everyone that was at that time saying, hey, you need your passport, or you need your passport because I was fighting was like, why would I ever leave the US and, you know, eventually I ended up getting the passport and that was very critical into me starting to see the business world, not only in the States, but also internationally. And I think that developed a desire to do more with business to become a speaker to start writing books and and showcasing my talents and realms that I just wasn't thinking about when I was just like, you know, a high schooler.
Our USA News founder's desire is to authentically connect with Millennials and Gen-Z. You founded an advertising agency marketing to the younger crowd as well. Is this younger crowd similar to Gen-X and Boomers or have you found it's a quite different methodology to reach them?
That's a good question. So when we started VNM, USA, which was the ad agency, I found it when I was in college There was two things that, that I would say were going through my mind at that time. The first thing was, I didn't want to work a regular job, I already was a full time student, there was a period where I was trying to be a DJ. And I was studying computer science and all these things, I was doing way too much in college, for sure. Especially for someone that didn't have the skill sets of juggling 50 different things all at once, like I was, I was taking on too much. And I didn't want to add to my plate, just going and doing a regular job, like I was just like, this is not going to cut it. And you know, at the time, minimum wage was less than even what it is now. And you know, I had to pay my full tuition, and even racked up some more debt. And on top of that, so I needed to make, you know, decent money, and I needed to do it fast. And I knew that like just putting my time in somewhere was just not going to cut it.
So I ended up starting the agency because it was like just 40,000 students around, if we can't figure out how to communicate with the 40,000. And help brands do that, or companies, we're just going to, we're just going to just not be good at what we do like it's going to be, this is like the easiest money to make, I thought. And it turned out it was it wasn't it wasn't the easiest money to make. But it was definitely life changing in many regards.
So to answer the question, are Gen Z and Gen X and Gen in the baby boomers, are they all different? The things that change are your points of reference for the world. So a millennial is going to have this unique perspective because they are like the last generation where they grew up in a world where the internet wasn't everywhere. So you know, the world post Internet, and you know, the world pre internet. And some of the fondness we see, even with the 90s stems from that, I think it's like the era where, you know, there was still a Walkman, there still was a radio, we had CD players, we had, you know, cell phones that didn't have touchscreens on it and could only store like 25 contacts, like we had these memories that aren't that distant but are very fond and very different from what we know when existed now. And you know, that's the mindset of a millennial. And every generation has that I'm sure the current generation Gen Z as they go into the workplace, they're going to see a world where there was technology that wasn't automated.
And in 10 or 15 years, there'll be like, Man AI is everywhere, like I don't, I don't look at my to do list without doing a layer of AI on it first, right? Like, sounds crazy to you and me, probably. But I mean, there's probably gonna be a future where that is true, where everything's just gonna get AI’d. And the same way that everything gets made into an app, or it's served to us in a digital format, like, you know, 20 years ago, people still really desired, you know, having a physical paper, like I remember working in a library. And one of the most popular sections in the library was the news, the newspaper section, like it got so popular that people just did like, take the newspapers and try to go out the library. And there was like a thing today, I highly doubt this, people are trying to steal newspapers from the library, because you just go on your phone and get the same news and probably be more efficient with accessing it. And so there's little nuances like that, that change that are stories that mean something to different generations. And as a marketer, your job is to convey a message about a brand service or product. And you're message is going to connect and resonate with people. And knowing your persona, knowing the people you're talking to. That's what what matters the most when you're crafting the messaging. And I think the diff that the end of the day, we're all people, we all kind of have the same problems. It's just the story points of reference for those problems change a lot.
You are obviously a futuristic thinker who develops resources for others. You authored two bleeding-edge technology books at the time which are The Metaverse Handbook and The NFT Handbook. Can you tell us a little bit about those books and is authoring a passion for topics of your interest?
So I'm the author of the metaverse handbook and NFC handbook. And these two books are great books. I think they can change a lot of people's lives, they already have changed my life. And the reason why I would say that is both books give you a glimpse into a future that is not that distant. Now these are the near future. We're getting really, really close to that. And the NFT handbook, I'm talking about NFTs which are digital collectibles, and the reason why you should care about that in one sentence is digital scarcity is here. And scarcity drives just about every point of commerce. And even more in our daily lives as it exists. You know, time is scarce. There's different items that are scarce, there are different moments that are scarce. Like we are very familiar with scarcity, it's the first time ever, we're getting a chance to mess around with that in a digital capacity when it comes to the metaverse. There's so much to resetting. But if I was just explaining to you in one sentence or two, the way we communicate is about to change forever. And the internet gave us a glimpse into what that inaugural change could be wind powered by digital technologies. And obviously, they were IT technologies before that, but nothing really liked the Internet. The Internet has brought together people from different parts of the globe in near real time, and in some cases, real time, and it's changed it.
The Metaverse is going to do probably the same thing, if not greater, and it's going to take some time, we're still building our collective understanding of what the metaverse is and how it will be accessed and how we'll utilize it. But there are some really great case studies that exist today that showcase many of the innovations that are had and will be found in the metaverse. And I think this is a good read to understand that. Obviously, I'm biased. I wrote both the books, but they've been reviewed, people have been out there they've been they've been commenting, you know, people have been buying and putting their money where their mouth is. And I think the emerging technologies such as the metaverse and the NFT era that we're in, is going to have a significant impact on our daily lives in the near future. And so if you have the time to get an edge on that, that gives you a competitive advantage that makes you a much more useful employee founder. Maybe you just want to be a tanker or a future thinker like myself, and you have that opportunity now.
There are many activities you are involved with beyond this interview but we would like to ask what you are currently up to and what your plans are for the rest of 2023?
So currently, I'm working on my third book, that book is going to be announced soon, I can tell you who the co-author is. And that is Floyd Money Mayweather, you know the undefeated champion boxing legend, we're going to be talking about the topic of self-discipline, and many others. But this is a very fun book for me to write, mainly because I get a chance to talk about something that is in contrast to some of the emerging technologies, you know, you can know all the things that you need to know about, you know, the metaverse or even NF T's. But if you don't have a great understanding on some of the fundamental traits that you need to be a successful human, you actually don't have an advantage, you're at a disadvantage, because you don't know how to empathize and communicate with people.
And so what we're looking to do in 2023, is venture out a little bit beyond just the emerging technologies and get into the realm of the mind and what it means to be an achiever at the highest level. And so we get a chance to work with one of the most disciplined individuals that I know Floyd Mayweather. And it's going to be one heck of a book still in the writing lab for that, and it's coming together, but we will see that hopefully God willing, in 2023.
Is there anything else you would like to share with us?
Honestly, you know, if you're watching this, and you want to know what I'm up to what I'm thinking about the easiest way to find out in near real-time beyond the book. So let's say you've read the NFT handbook. You've got questions, what's my current thoughts on NFTs? Or what's happening in the Metaverse because some company did something. I started a journal. It's called a WTF journal. Not that WTF that you're probably thinking about, literally stands for “What's The Future” and every day I asked myself, what's the future and I detail that in a journal, that journal is available to you. I've opened it up anyone can see it. It's free. Real time so what I'm thinking that day, you get a chance to actually get a vibe with. And you can access that at EVERYDAYS.WTF. And I've put that out there for everyone to see. And most people can access it and if you have some thoughts, comments, ideas, you know, go there and get a good glimpse into what a future thinking are, and get a good glimpse of what a future thinker is thinking about.
So with that being said, I will catch you all in the future. And thanks for rocking with me on this interview.
QuHarrison Terry, the USA News team would like to thank you for allowing us to get to know you a little bit more and learn about your amazing and dynamic life. We wish you the best in all that you do!
Photo Courtesy: Qu Harrison