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Start Your Business Success Stories

Strong Like Hudson: How My Nephew Inspired Me to Quit My Job and Start a Business

Bo Lais of Lula Credit: Lula

Life is unpredictable. Each day brings on new challenges and obstacles. We were all given ways of feeling strong. Mine came in the form of my nephew – a boy with a thirst for life, and the gift of courage.

My nephew Hudson was born with cerebral palsy and had to battle every day of his life. From the beginning, we all knew that he didn't have long. When he was born, the doctors said that he probably wouldn't make it until his first birthday. When he turned one, the doctors said that he probably wouldn't make it until his second. There seemed to be a trend, and he was never afraid.

Despite being so young, Hudson taught me a lot about how to conquer life. It was easy to tell that he hated expectations, because he exceeded them with every passing day. Hudson woke up every morning and faced his circumstances with a smile on his face. Without knowing it, he was giving an entire family strength. That became our family motto: "Strong Like Hudson."

In 2008, a pharmacist by the name of Michael Rea gave me the opportunity to become a shareholder of Rx Savings Solutions, a technology-driven pharmaceutical consulting service. Fast forward to 2015: I was working as the company's CTO and doing pretty well. My wife and I had just bought a house and were living comfortably.

After we got settled into our new home, we invited our in-laws to visit. A couple of hours before everyone arrived, the air conditioner stopped blowing cold air. Since it was the summer, the temperature of the house began to rapidly rise.

I was scrambling to get this problem solved, calling every HVAC specialist I could find. To my surprise, almost nobody was available to come out on such short notice, and the companies that were willing to help quoted heavily inflated prices due to the last-minute call. Luckily, I had a close friend who knew someone who could fix my problem and save the weekend.

In an age where instant communication and advanced technology are such a huge factor in our lives, I realized that home services on demand isn't such a far-fetched idea. That is when the idea for Lula was born.

I started thinking through all of the details. I saw a problem that many people experience regularly, and I wanted to create the solution. But I was also forced to look at the situation realistically. I had a six-figure job. I had full benefits. Life was good. How can I walk away from that?

The answer was simple. Be strong like Hudson.

With the idea for Lula hovering over me like a cloud, I found the courage to step down from my position at Rx Savings Solutions. Walking away when I had a wife, two kids, and a brand-new mortgage was not an easy decision, but when you are able to witness a portrait of strength like Hudson, those sacrifices become easier to swallow. It was a four-year-old boy who inspired me to believe in myself, and an idea that can improve lives.

To this day, Hudson's strength gives me confidence. An idea that started out as a seed has now grown into a fully funded company. With that, Lula is a company with the community in mind. Our goal was to create a technology that would simplify the way people interact with quality home service professionals. If we can bring convenience to a person's life, then we have achieved our goal.

We also plan to continue giving back to the community by donating a percentage of each transaction to non-profits. For a company built around the people, we have every intention of continuing to do it for the people.

About the author: Bo Lais, CEO and founder of Lula, is an experienced serial entrepreneur with a demonstrated history of working in the information technology and services industry.