Found At The Summit : Feature #4
Adam Theobald, Founder & CEO of Ordermentum
Found At The Summit is an interview series that peeps into the every day lives of the wonderful Series A+ founders that make up Innovation Bay’s Summit community.
This month we’re thrilled to welcome Adam Theobald as Feature #4 of the Found At The Summit series. Adam is the Founder & CEO of Ordermentum, a wholesale online order management system for the food and beverage industry.
We uncovered a new oxymoron in this one! Adam, “the scale up CEO who tries to sleep!” Adam is full of passion and energy. On a mission to better himself and give back, using every ounce of skill and talent he has to leave this world in a better place than when he arrived. Leave nothing on the table.
by Innovation Bay’s, Sarah Catford
An average day in the life of Adam
The morning is about creating space to get into the deep work. My go-to is a local cafe and, for about 2 hours, it’s about working on the business not in the business. This gives me the opportunity to reflect. Without this, I am not my best self. Not as centered or focussed. When I was younger, I used my evening time for this. Really burning the candles at both ends with late nights and early mornings. But now with a family I love to dedicate my evenings to tucking them into bed and spending time with my wife. I also have a much greater focus on health so I am really trying to make space for 7+ hours of sleep unless there are burning deadlines or the team needs me.
Daily success habits
The morning ritual mentioned above is crucial, and really a core pillar for me to be the best version of myself.
Sleep is becoming increasingly important as I both get older, and as I increase my exercise routines. We hear many things over our lifetime that we know are good for us but we don’t prioritise or manage to forget; eating well, sleeping, and reducing alcohol. I have ebbed and flowed in weight my entire life, but this last 12 months I have been hugely focused on becoming healthy and dropping my weight.
The more I find myself facing adversity, or the reality of aging, the more I find myself tapping into sleep, exercise, and nourishing food to be as robust and resilient as possible. It’s been incredibly powerful to do this.
Using wearables really helps me bring reality to the themes we are talking about.. ‘get 8 hours of sleep, drink enough water, 30 minutes of activity a day’. The data doesn’t lie, and I feel a whole lot worse when I don’t do these things. It’s the visualisation of your sleep detriment. Recently the data told me that stress hurt my physical resilience more than COVID did; the data doesn’t lie.
Big moment in the last 30 days
The realisation we didn’t have to raise any money.
As a startup, we spend a lot of time thinking about raising capital. When I started as an entrepreneur, raising money was a measure of success. It really is a great step, and an amazing achievement — and I don’t want to take away from that — but it’s an empowering moment to say we are capital independent, especially coming out of COVID given the headwinds we faced as a business.
We definitely celebrated this and appreciate what we have achieved, as it was a deliberate model to be less capital reliant.
Advice from the past
Many people told me I was a ‘dreamer’ when I said I wanted to go and build my own business. I came from an investment banking background, and the people around me just didn’t believe it.
I had one mate who said to me, go for it, but prepare to be kicked in the guts daily, to be knocked down. The skill is in getting up again, and again, and again. Be tenacious and ready for the next day. Entrepreneurs, including myself, are very optimistic. This advice really did prepare me for what was to follow (thanks Brad).
The second piece of advice, or a quote, that came from afar — “One-way way doors” by Jeff Bezos. It’s an incredible analogy around making decisions. We just can’t afford to sweat the small stuff. To solve “solved” problems. I really respect the art of decision making, and while I still have much room to grow here, the analogy helped me improve and get on the right learning curve.
Do you architect your life?
Not really, but I live by some core principles that have come to me from experience.
My father passed away when I was 23 — out of the blue. I lived a middle class, privileged existence due to his success and generosity throughout his life. And I 100% took everything for granted.
When he passed, it really shook my foundations. It made me think about the mark I wanted to leave on the world. The core takeaway from this reflection was that I really don’t want to leave anything on the table. To the extent that I have any talent, it was not my doing! I want to use anything and everything I have to make a meaningful impact and create good in this world.
Dad passed away 2 months after he retired. He gave me everything and was twice the person I am. I owe it to him to do what I can with his generosity.
Who inspires you?
My father, he definitely inspired me. He was brilliant, capable, giving, selfless and generous. He came from a modest childhood in the country to become a successful lawyer. As a child, I wanted to follow his footsteps. I said to him once, ‘I want to be a lawyer like you’. He said, “no, do something useful in your life”. I thought that was a really odd comment. It really gave me license to explore what I could do differently in this world.
Pivotal moments that changed the course
My first trip to India.
It completely jolted my understanding of what normal was in the world. Thinking that my everyday life was the norm for everyone. It rocked me to the core and woke me up to the reality that my privileged life was unusual. I really have to thank my wife, and her parents for showing me India and opening my mind in so many ways.
I find travel amazing for perspective; especially in how lucky we are in Australia. Because of this, I am a massive fan of anyone who has undertaken a sea change. The nitty gritty scrappiness, the hustle, the capability when it comes to people. You cannot replicate that from someone who has made a sea change.
What’s at the Summit for you.
- Change for the good
- Giving back
I think about legacy, but not in the traditional sense. My wife and I thought about how we can set our kids up to have a similar opportunity we were afforded. Not just financially, but also to have an impact on the world. Giving them the opportunity to find their passions, develop their talents, and to hopefully establish that hunger to not leave anything on the table. I want to spend more time with them as they grow and mature.
I am very passionate about digitising hospitality for the good of everyone. I want our business to have a meaningful impact on the sector. There is so much waste and there is so much opportunity, and really it’s an unparalleled opportunity to have an impact on an industry from a sustainability point of view.
I also want to create a post-work legacy, something that I can start to contribute to and really give back to the world. I have a desire to use any skills that I have towards the good of great causes.
And would love to play more golf, it’s my passion.
Connect with Adam
More Innovation Bay content
Join the Innovation Bay community
INNOVATION BAY NEWSletter
Stay up to date
Sign up for monthly updates including exclusive interviews, pitch dates, event announcements, profile, news and much more.