Get to Know John, HMG’s New Senior Brand & Marketing Strategist


HMG is excited to see our team grow as we welcome the newest addition to our fam, the talented John Paulsen, as our Senior Brand & Marketing Strategist. With ample experience as an entrepreneur himself, John is eager to learn, build great friendships, and find meaning in everything that he does this year. If you’re anything like us, you can’t wait to get to know John! In order to get the full scoop on our newest member, we’ve asked him some fun questions following a quick background:

John is a native Texan who was swept out of state at an early age. For most of his life, he called Colorado his home. Today, he’s back in the Lone Star State, happily married with two sons, and calls himself a #nativetransplant, yeah that’s our first time hearing the term too.

Even at an early age, John knew building brand and message was his calling. He would even skip the programs on TV and only tune in during the commercials. Now that’s dedication. After college he spent 15 years in the world of B2B finance. However, after being confined to a cubicle for too long, he left and started freelance consulting, focusing on brand design, development and strategy. During this time, he worked with a variety of entrepreneurs and CEOs. John’s message was clear – “Business is about meaning, motivation, math & many.” More recently John sold a thriving, multi-unit, retail coffee chain he built from the ground up and moved to Austin. This, in addition to his latest role as Creative Director at his previous company KPS Motoworks, expanded his knowledge  on design, research, brand and marketing strategy.

John is currently leading the development and infusion of research, strategy and positioning into all aspects of creative development for HMG’s clients and helping them seamlessly fuse digital with traditional strategies.

What would your last meal be?

Shake & Bake Boneless Chicken Breast and Scalloped Potatoes (straight out of the box)

What is your spirit animal and why? 

I would say that my spirit animal is definitely a bear. When pushed with truth I’m a Teddy Bear, but when I’m pushed with deception I can turn into a Grizzly.

What fictional character do you relate to the most? Why?

Forrest Gump – I’ve been told multiple times ‘the things I touch turn to gold’. I don’t see it and neither did he.

Who would you say is your role model? Why?

I have plenty – Steve Jobs, John Mackey, Barney Visser, my Father.  All are/were great entrepreneurs.  Courage is not always starting something from nothing. The most difficult part is the second step of entrepreneurship.  When you get kicked and you come out stronger. All of these great entrepreneurs did just that.

If you could go anywhere in the world where would it be and why?

Europe – I love learning lessons from history.  Where else is better for that?

On your day off, where would you be? What would you be doing?

I would be spending time with family, working on self improvement, riding a Triumph, driving an old VW, or cleaning the garage.

What personal experience would you say you gained the most knowledge from?

Being a an Entrepreneur. When we build something from nothing people gain the ability to not be crippled by the fear of failure.  This is the definition of courage.

What are your goals (personal/career) for the year 2019?

Some of my personal goals are to have fun, explore my new city, build great friendships.  Career wise, I want to seek my new “Why” and find the joy in what I do.

What’s the best advice you could give to anyone?

Stop being afraid of failure to the point you take no action.