In case you needed a compelling reason why it’s unfair to label millennials as lazy and entitled—meet Larry Morrow. At just 27 years old, Morrow is a go-to promoter for bringing influencers and A-list celebs like Diddy and Angela Yee to New Orleans, the author of All Bets On Me, and owner of Morrow’s—a hot spot in NOLA rated one of the five best new restaurants in New Orleans by GQ magazine.
Equally important to Morrow’s boss moves are his perspectives about what it really takes to turn your side hustle into a successful business. Below he shares his tips for taking your business to the next level.
Let’s take it back to your childhood. What instances inspired you to become an entrepreneur?
I believe I got the entrepreneurial spirit from my mother and grandmother. My family experiencing hard times definitely was the catalyst that made me quit both of my jobs, drop out of college, and put “All Bets On Me.” And by “All Bets On Me,” I mean that I decided to dedicate all of my time, resources, and energy into advancing my family and myself.
Very early on you were working as a lifeguard during the day and a valet at night. You’ve also openly talked about how a night of gambling taught you an important lesson about investing in yourself. Can you talk more about that lesson, and share the investments that have made the biggest impact in your career?
In the book, I shared that one night I lost nearly $30,000 in the casino. Then I realized that I had to stop gambling on a game where the odds were stacked against me and start investing in myself—where the odds were more favorable. When I came to that realization, I went from losing money in the casino to investing and making money with the casino. Currently, that casino is where I host some of my biggest events with celebrities like Diddy, Drake, Chris Brown, Floyd Mayweather, Fabolous, Lil Kim, and more.
Recently, I partnered with my mother to open Morrow’s restaurant, so that’s the second investment that has made the biggest impact on my career as an entrepreneur. My mother is also an entrepreneur and a phenomenal chef! The restaurant has created stability for my family and given us the ability to be a resource and staple in the neighborhood and community.
During your interview with The Breakfast Club, you talked about your experiences working as a promoter and emphasized the power of keeping relationships strong and always adding value to the service you provide. Can you share your thoughts about what it takes to build strong relationships?
It’s important to let things happen organically. Don’t force it. Everyone isn’t meant to walk with you on your journey. Most people approach situations or relationships expecting something and seeking what they can get out of it. They come to the table to see what’s there for them. My approach is different. I bring the table to the table. I come with the fruit basket to discuss being fruitful. When trying to connect, build, or maintain a relationship, assess what you have to offer because relationships are meant to be mutually beneficial.
Money is not the only form of currency—bring your energy, joy, creativity, laughter, and insight to the table.
Promoting began as a side hustle but when I fell in love with it and saw the potential, I started taking steps toward running my company less like a hustle and more like a business. It’s been the stepping-stone that has allowed me to soar as an entrepreneur and venture into other industries like festival production and real estate development.
Can you share three tips on how to use your side hustle to start a successful business?
- Use your side hustle to network, collaborate, and establish relationships. Be resourceful and approachable. Regardless of your industry or what level of success you attain, remain humble. Pride comes before the fall. When I first started out, I would reach out to people I admired to collaborate or for advice or be mentored but I couldn’t even get a response. I promised myself that I wouldn’t be that person—I’d always be approachable and I’d always be a resource to others. Due to my approachable nature, many of the opportunities I’ve been allotted and the relationships I’ve established have come from and been with people that started off as strangers. In business, it’s important to be welcoming, especially in the hospitality industry.
- Research and find your niche.
- Be consistent.