Renowned entrepreneur and KISSmetrics co-founder Neil Patel gets JobShadowed about his career.  You can find Neil on his blog and on his Twitter feed in the sidebar of this interview.

What do you do for a living?Neil-Patel-HR-Ray-Spaddy-4

 I am a serial entrepreneur. I co-founded Crazy Egg around 6 years ago and these days I spend all of my time on my current startup, KISSmetrics.

How would you describe what you do?

I help companies optimize their site. My software company, KISSmetrics, helps companies understand what causes their revenue to go up or down.

What does your work entail?

I spend the majority of my time marketing the startup. To writing blog posts, to speaking at conferences, to optimizing for conversions, I spend my time on marketing.

What’s a typical work week like?

It’s usually filled with calls and meetings. Here’s what my typical day looks like: http://www.quicksprout.com/2011/06/16/the-day-in-the-life-of-neil-patel/

How did you get started?

I didn’t get a paycheck until my 4th year. From years 0 to 3, I made $0.00 dollars.

When I was 16 I started looking for a job on sites like Career Builder. I then quickly learned how these job boards made millions, so I decided to start my own…AdiceMonkey. My job board failed, but I learned how to market my own site from it. From there I started a marketing agency.

What do you like about what you do?

I love helping other businesses succeed. It’s fun and exciting to see businesses grow and entrepreneurs succeed.

What do you dislike?

It’s a ton of work and a lot of hours. You get used to it after a while… but sometimes you get burned out.

How do you make money/or how are you compensated?

I am compensated through stock and money. As a founder if the company succeeds, I succeed.

How much do you make?

I make enough where I don’t have to work anymore if I didn’t want to, and I don’t have to worry about rent or putting food on the table.

How much money did/do you make starting out? 

I didn’t make any money. I didn’t get a paycheck until my 4th year. From years 0 to 3, I made $0.00 dollars.

What education, schooling, or skills are needed to do this?

You need to learn how to be scrappy and hustle. As long as you work hard enough, learn from your mistakes, and you do whatever it takes to succeed, you’re cut out to be an entrepreneur.

Plus you need to learn to never quit.

What is most challenging about what you do?

It takes persistence. You can’t expect to solve a big problem over night or to become rich over night. Anything worth while takes time and energy.

What is most rewarding?

Helping other people out. It puts a smile on my face… which is why I love helping entrepreneurs and people out.

What advice would you offer someone considering this career?

Don’t do it for the money. If you are really passionate about something and want to solve a problem, then you can consider being an entrepreneur. Don’t just become one because you want to be rich… there are a lot easier way to become rich.

How much time off do you get/take?

None. I work 24/7

What is a common misconception people have about what you do?

Once you start making money, things get easier. Funny enough, the more money you make, the more you find yourself working.

What are your goals/dreams for the future?

One day I want to start a non-profit. I don’t know what kind of non-profit I want to start, but I know I want to start one.

What else would you like people to know about your job/career?

Entrepreneurship is time consuming. It’s not an easy path and most entrepreneurs fail.