Justin Mathews: Setting new levels for young entrepreneurs
Top 10 Most Influential CEOs to Watch Out For in 2021
Having the spark to lead and mark his presence in the market, Justin Mathews, Co-founder & CEO of Moxie Labs is paving his business to the top and creating many new opportunities for others. Even though Moxie Labs is new to the agency scene in Philadelphia, it’s Co-Founders have over 20 years of experience working for some of the largest shops in the region. Moxie smashed their 2020 revenue goals and are looking to do big things in 2021.
Journey to success
From a very young age, Justin was passionate about leading teams at different fronts and excelled at projects no matter the domain. He wanted to grab the first position in everything and stay on the top.
While growing up, Justin got involved in student leadership programs in school. He completed his high school education at Council Rock High School in Newtown, PA where he was the Senior Class President of over 900 students. He then went on to complete his Bachelor’s Degree at Drexel University in Philadelphia where he held leadership positions all 5 years including USGA Student Body President. He also held positions within the Inter-Fraternal Council & was President of Sigma Alpha Mu Fraternity.
During his college years, he co-founded his first start-up agency, Karizma Media Solutions. Him & his co-founder later successfully sold the agency to their largest client, creating their first start-up exit at the age of 23. The fire to rise and progress in his mind and soul pushed him to grab different roles and expand his horizons over time, and he didn’t stop there.
He has been a member of the board of advisors of several different companies, which has added new proficiencies to his skill set and allowed him to study the market closely. Being an experienced leader, he co-founded Moxie Labs in 2020 and took the onus of CEO to lead the company upfront.
Source of motivation
From a very young age, Justin knew that he was instilled with raw leadership in his blood. His father built a highly successful CPA firm & tax office headquartered in Philadelphia which is still around today from scratch. His mother moved up the ladder with multiple positions in the nursing industry which eventually led to a career at the management level of a major hospital system in the Philadelphia region. Both of his parents hardwired a hard-working ethic into him. However, he states, “I think everyone has some sort of plan in life, and I drove myself to work hard and be a leader in everything I did. I was involved in Student Government in both High School & College, played a part on several leadership teams for organizations, and started my first company right out of school. I still want to do even more, and I’m not sure I’ll ever be “comfortable” at where I am right now.”
When it comes to motivation, he believes that his family and passion for creating new opportunities for himself and others are two prime motivators that provide structure to his future.
He adds, “I’ve always loved organizational dynamics with a focus on the people operations aspect of it. How do you get the best work out of people/employees? What drives & motivates them to excel on a project? How do you create a killer culture that will attract the best talent? I’m super competitive. I play to win. My baseline goals for myself as a leader are pretty simple: do the right thing, be kind, and take care of others. I’ve found success in reaching those goals because they are so simple; however, I know that as a leader these human basics can easily be overlooked.”
Serving upfront with Moxie Labs
Moxie Labs is a Digital Product & Marketing Agency headquartered in Philadelphia, PA. Moxie currently has 16 clients & 24 employees. They try to stay as industry agnostic as possible with digital being found in all spaces. The partners at Moxie push the in-house team to think out-of-the-box and provide unique solutions for their customers. They are a small but mighty group who confidently take risks and are always working for their customer’s customer.
The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted everything, but they adjusted to the situation and fine-tuned their way through the challenges. He adds, “We’ve been able to grow rather quickly through this new way of working but feel like the processes and systems we had in place with our partial offshore staff have created the majority of our success. We were able to adjust to all of the remote changes rather quickly and continued to grow staff and sign clients.”
Life as the Co-founder & CEO of the company
As the startup is in its adolescent stage, Justin plays a crucial role in every aspect and oversees many of the departments such as Operations, HR, Business Development, etc. He adds, “My “title” at Moxie is Co-Founder / CEO. However, in a small startup like ours, you end up wearing a lot of different hats. The majority of my time is spent on removing roadblocks from the team to do great work or growing the business (Sales/NBD). A lot of my past experiences were in management positions as I moved up the ranks on the client services sides of companies. They varied anywhere from managing client expectations to running delivery operations for organizations as well.”
Being a driven leader, he always strives for the best. Once a milestone is achieved, he has the eyes on the next ones to progress to. He always plans for the future to create new opportunities for everyone and never settle at one point. He states, “You always want to continue creating the next best thing. The hard work will always be the foundation of what I do. However, it hasn’t “paid off” just yet – this story isn’t fully complete, we have a lot of work to do.”
Balancing working and personal life
At one point in his life, Justin was all about work. He adds, “I thought I knew it all and worked until my fingers hurt from typing. I thought I was on the top of the world.” But as he became a father, he realized that family is now most important, and it is crucial to strike a balance between the professional and personal front. His wife & infant son come before anything else, and without their support, this wouldn’t work.
He makes ample time to spend with his family and wants to instill the same work ethics in his child, which were marked on him by his parents.
Future plans for the company
Justin’s drive and determination are around building the best team in the Philly region and building a better life for his family. He expresses, “I want to continue to push the staff and company to new levels. I’ve never been scared to roll up my sleeves and jump in where needed – and this role is no different. No different from the janitors all the way up to management. We respect everyone equally, and everyone has a voice. I’m so very proud of the team we have – they are all rock stars in their own ways. We’re truly blessed to work with such talented & dedicated people, and we wouldn’t have it any other way.