10 coolest entrepreneurs: Marcus Liassides

London is calling

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SOCKSTAR: Liassides bought new socks for our photo shoot, but he fears they won’t last long. “My son always steals my socks out of my closet!” (Photo by Dave Blackhurst/UVBizQ)

Sorenson Media: Marcus Liassides, 39

Marcus Liassides is your typical entrepreneur who went from small town London to big city American Fork. OK, so that’s based on a true story. But in our defense, the British entrepreneur is no stranger to a little drama. Liassides has worked in television, video, and digital advertising for most of his career. He founded Inuk Networks in the UK in 2003, which was acquired six years later by Move Networks in American Fork (thus the pilgrimage to Utah Valley). There he worked with clients like ESPN, ABC, Comcast and Fox. These days, Liassides is the president and CEO of Sorenson Media. He has moved the company into advanced TV and analytics and facilitated the development of the Sorenson Spark platform.

BABY STEPS All I wanted to be was a fighter pilot in the Royal Air Force. I must have watched “Top Gun” a hundred times!

SPRING IN YOUR STEP I’m passionate about people having dreams, believing they can achieve them, and never quitting until they do. I’m particularly focused on how that mindset can be nurtured at a young age so children grow up with a “can do” attitude.

THINK ON YOUR FEET Annoyingly, my brain always decides to solve world problems at 2 in the morning, although quite often I can’t remember the idea the next day. I find the drive to and from work to be the best time to reflect on important topics for the day.

WHAT’S COOL TO YOU?

Being confidently and unashamedly a good person — no matter what you do and what challenges you face.

TWO LEFT FEET I know what I want to achieve, so I often run too fast and don’t pause enough to bring others along with me. It’s a constant struggle to remind myself to slow down, as more people solving the same problem is better than one person, no matter how fast I might have been running on my own.

PUT YOUR FEET UP When I was younger in my career and had fewer children (none in fact), I used to play basketball and golf to relax. I’m conscious now that my children need my time, just as I need theirs, so we’ve got into playing computer games together. It’s great to have competitive fun with the kids, but it’s also a real escape from any stresses at work.

PUT A SOCK IN IT Gratitude and humility are some of the most important traits in life and business. Sometimes the competitiveness of the workplace causes us to overlook these things and we miss opportunities to grow and learn. People are often scared to ask “why” for fear of looking stupid among peers. If you only do what you understand, you’ll never push the bounds of what’s possible.

COLD FEET Lots of things used to make me nervous. But I’ve always pushed myself out of my comfort zone, and over time your comfort zone grows to encompass things that were once very daunting. I’m quite a shy person, so networking and meeting new people at work or social events is uncomfortable and not natural for me. I prefer to stand back, observe and get to know people before engaging.

HOT FEET Confidence comes from doing something you believe in. You can’t lead, inspire and instill belief in a vision unless you unequivocally believe in it yourself.

BEST FOOT FORWARD The entrepreneur’s dilemma is that we’re never content. In the past, that used to be a negative in my life, as I confused not being content with not being happy. Today it’s something I embrace without letting it affect my happiness. I have never been happier in my life, but I am still not content that I have achieved all that I feel I can.

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