DiscoverOutlier Academy#8 Carey Smith of Big Ass Fans: Lessons Learned Building a $500M Business
#8 Carey Smith of Big Ass Fans: Lessons Learned Building a $500M Business

#8 Carey Smith of Big Ass Fans: Lessons Learned Building a $500M Business

Update: 2020-10-21


“I think humor is incredibly important, and I think it’s important even in industrial sales—and people don’t make enough use of it.” — Carey Smith

In this episode of Outliers, I catch up with Carey Smith, a brilliant entrepreneur who founded Big Ass Fans and grew it from $0 to $500 million in the span of 20 years. We discuss:

  • What Carey learned from his first business venture (which actually flopped).

  • The evolution of Big Ass Fans, how the company got its name and why it worked.

  • The importance of creating a company culture that puts both employees and customers first.

  • Why it’s not enough to just have an idea or even a solution when starting a business.

This is an empowering conversation packed with advice for entrepreneurs and business owners — and it proves nice guys can, in fact, finish first.

Full show notes with selected links, quotes, and the big ideas in this episode:

The full transcript can also be found here:


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#8 Carey Smith of Big Ass Fans: Lessons Learned Building a $500M Business

#8 Carey Smith of Big Ass Fans: Lessons Learned Building a $500M Business

Daniel Scrivner