How I Started my First Company at 15

Justin Alvey
4 min readDec 5, 2019

A personal story about a young entrepreneur from Detroit

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I don’t talk about it much, but I started my entrepreneurial pursuits at a young age. The exact date I don’t remember, but it was on a warm, summer day that I had an itch I couldn’t shake. Today I call this the day that I caught entrepreneurial bug.

On this August day the neighborhood I grew up in had many different sounds and sights. People were out in their yards in the sun. But there was a smell and look that stuck out to me: Fresh cut lawn. I emptied my wallet but only had a few dollars and an old two-dollar bill that my grandfather had given me.

My stomach was empty, and I wanted to get a pizza for myself and a friend that was coming over later. That was when I had the idea: “why don’t I go cut some lawns?”

The idea was simple enough — I drag our family lawnmower around the neighborhood until I find a house that would pay me to cut their lawn. There was nothing stopping me after all. Today I still believe that anything can be accomplished with enough determination and tenacity.

So that’s what I did! I filled up the lawnmower with gas, put oil in the weedtrimmer, and lugged this old wagon I had down the block with the family lawn equipment in tow. After knocking on a few doors and refusing to give up because I was now…



Justin Alvey

I’m passionate about #entrepreneurship, #programming, #space, #technology, and #writing.