The Courage to Think BIG!

By Mark Moses, an EO Orange County member and founder and CEO of

When was the last time you decided to think BIG and go out and do something that took both courage and determination? Check out this inspiring coverage about my son, Mason, and my Forum member, Ryan Rieches, on ABC News.

For my 11-year-old son, Mason, it happened this month when he completed his first half-marathon. He began training almost four months ago when he decided that he wanted to run the race in honor of my Forum member and family friend Ryan, who had just beaten throat cancer.

While Ryan was undergoing radiation treatments, a group of us told him that there was no question he was going to beat it, and we would all run the half-marathon in the spring to celebrate his recovery. Weak from heavy radiation treatments, Ryan had trouble picturing himself running 13.1 miles, but he agreed to take on the challenge. When Mason learned of the pact, he jumped at the chance to support his friend and fellow cancer survivor.

When Mason was 4-years-old, he underwent treatment for a brain tumor. The treatment consisted of two invasive brain surgeries (one to remove the tumor, and a second to create a new channel for drainage). Thanks to a great doctor and team of therapists, he is fortunate to be able to lead a healthy and active life. Running 13.1 miles is pretty rare for an11-year-old, but Mason felt strongly about supporting Ryan and proving to himself that he could do it. He even put his own skin in the game, agreeing to reimburse me, his father, for the US$95 entry fee if he didn’t cross the finish line.

He trained four days per week for four months, logging more than 200 miles. On his weekly long runs, his mother or I rode our bikes alongside him for company and encouragement. Every week he increased his mileage (his longest training run was 11 miles) and logged his progress. On 6 May, Mason and Ryan ran the entire race side by side and crossed the finish line together in 2 hours and 30 minutes. It was a huge accomplishment, and demonstrated the courage to think BIG, set a “Big Hairy Audacious Goal,” and go after it.

This happens in business, too! About a year ago, a client of mine decided he was going to think really BIG! After a really tough year, he had the courage to buy out his partners, renegotiate more than a million dollars in debt and inspire his company to buy into his vision … now he is having his best year ever!

What is your BHAG? I encourage you to push yourself to accomplish something that might seem a bit daunting. There is no telling where it can lead.

Mark coaches high-growth entrepreneurs and companies on how to grow their businesses, build their strategic plan, raise capital and navigate through the challenges of entrepreneurship. He started his first company at age 19, and has successfully built and sold two companies. Mark has won Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year award and the Blue Chip Enterprise award for overcoming adversity. His companies garnered rankings of #1 Fastest-Growing Company in Los Angeles, as well as #10 on the Inc. 500. Visit or email mark at [email protected].

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