GabrielShaoolianGabriel Shaoolian‘s success story is at once familiar and entirely unique. He moved to NYC in 2001 and set up his business with nothing but a laptop and some web design experience. Since then, his company, Blue Fountain Media, has generated over $2 billion in revenue by building sites for everyone from AT&T to AOL.

In the latest installment of Mediabistro’s Hey, How’d You Do That?, Shaoolian talks about how he went from a freelance web designer to CEO:

Describe the early days of your freelance life.
Well, let me tell you, and I’ll tell anyone out there. It’s crazy. You know, doing this without funding, you lose a lot of sleep, and you lose your life, really. The company becomes your life. It’s not easy. It’s not for someone who wants weekends and who wants vacations. I tell people that you go on vacation and you are still thinking about work every second of every day.

I had no idea what I was in for. I just wanted to build something small. But I realized that I can’t do everything on my own. If I want to do good work, I need team members that are specialized. As Blue Fountain Media grew, I started working on an infrastructure for the company.

To hear more about Shaoolian’s career, as well as his advice for freelancers and entrepreneurs, read: Hey, How’d You Build Profitable Websites For Brands Like AOL and AT&T, Gabriel Shaoolian?

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