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Dave Lukas, The Misfit Entrepreneur_Breakthrough Entrepreneurship

The weekly podcast with serial entrepreneur, Dave M. Lukas, devoted to giving you incredibly useful and unique insight from the world's top entrepreneurs with a focus on their non-traditional methods for achieving success, their Misfit side. Misfit was created to give YOU the breakthrough entrepreneurship strategies and actionable advice to accelerate your success! The show's open format and Misfit 3 concept, combined with Dave's intuitive and engaging interview style quickly uncover each guest's key tools, tactics, and tricks that listeners can start using in their lives right now. Learn more about the show at www.misfitentrepreneur.com and become a member of Misfit Nation by signing up for the Misfit Minute, the FREE weekly email with specific resources from the week's "Misfit 3," and actionable tips and items from the world of Misfit Entrepreneurs. It is delivered every Friday to your inbox!
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The weekly podcast with serial entrepreneur, Dave M. Lukas, devoted to giving you incredibly useful and unique insight from the world's top entrepreneurs with a focus on their non-traditional methods for achieving success, their Misfit side. Misfit was created to give YOU the best, actionable advice to accelerate your success!

The show's open format and Misfit 3 concept, combined with Dave's intuitive and engaging interview style quickly uncovers each guest's key tools, tactics, and tricks that listeners can start using in their lives right now.

Learn more about the show at www.misfitentrepreneur.com and become a member of Misfit Nation by signing up for the Misfit Minute, the FREE weekly email with specific resources from the week's "Misfit 3," and actionable tips and items from the world of Misfit Entrepreneurs. It is delivered every Friday to your inbox!

Feb 2, 2022

This week’s Misfit Entrepreneur is Dave Menz. Dave is known as the “Laundromat Millionaire.” He grew up in poverty and had to overcome tremendous challenge to find success. And he did it by doing something obvious, but unique – upping the game in an industry that was resting on its laurels, the laundromat space.

He started by doing what I have come to call “chicken entrepreneurship,” building a business on the side while working a job. And now he’s a millionaire multiple times over and the author of the forthcoming book, Laundromat Millionaire – the Grit to Elevate and Industry.

Dave has a true rags to riches story that I cannot wait for him to share with you.

www.LaundromatMillionaire.com

Dave grew up poor in Flint, Michigan. He lived in a rough neighborhood but had good parents. They didn’t have much money, but they had a good family. He learned that no one was going to hand him anything, but that he could make it happen for himself if he pursued it. He always had an entrepreneur streak in him, but as he grew up, he “took the bait” of corporate America and had the stereotypical middle-class lifestyle.

It was in is late 20’s that he realized that it really wasn’t what it was cracked up to be. He had kind of sold out on his dream of being an entrepreneur. So, over the next 5 years he and his family lived well below their means and saved to buy a business. They didn’t know what it was, but they needed seed money.

Over those 5 years, he and his wife worked really hard at their plan and looked at every business he could find, but none of them checked all the boxes until he came across a laundromat a few miles from his house.

He didn’t see any red flags in his diligence, but he saw tremendous opportunity and he seized it. The laundromat was “a complete dump and losing money” when they bought it. After going to work, nowadays Dave owns 5 laundromats and the real estate with them and has built a multi-million-dollar business. They even had a laundry pickup and delivery service.

Now Dave’s personal mission is to elevate the industry.

Why did you choose the laundromat business over all the others you looked at?

  • A lot of the negative conceptions about laundromats as opportunities.
  • Dave believes the laundromat business is the best small business in America.
  • Laundromats are a simple cash business with no accounts receivable, no inventory, simple book-keeping, and minimal employees to manage.
  • It is also a simple business to run that is steady.
  • It is also a vital community resource that is recession resistant.
  • It is a business about people who need a good service and that is the opportunity – where many owners just maintain a laundromat, it can be and do so much more.
  • It can almost be boring because it is consistent, but not “sexy.”

At the 10 min, Dave talks about being an entrepreneur in the general sense and the gift that it is. Dave would find that he was proud to be an entrepreneur and own a business, but when told people what kind it was, he could see the look on their face. He also talks about the laundromat business in general.

What did you learn and do to differentiate your business?

  • Most people that run laundromats treat it as a side hustle that they don’t have to do much with. That sets the bar low.
  • Dave treated it as a true business who cared for its customers. The bar was already set low for wowing people. For example, having a very clean and well-kept store. Having an attendant available to help people.
  • Dave created standards such as high customer service, having attendants, and creating a better value proposition.
  • It didn’t happen overnight and he continued to work for almost 5 years at his job while putting every extra hour and extra dime into building and making the business better.

Dave’s philosophy: As a human being, he wants to be a better version of himself each day. A better husband, a better dad, and a better business owner.

You found your business on Craig’s List. Was that luck or is there still opportunity to find businesses to buy there?

  • There is still opportunity there.
  • It’s an overlooked place
  • At the 21 min mark, Dave talks about the love being an entrepreneur and running a good business, no matter what the product is.
  • You can go onto Craig’s List under the “Businesses for Sale” area and find many different ones there.
  • There are “diamond in the roughs” to be found.

You talk a lot about “Grit.” Define grit how you see it.

  • The willingness to do anything that is legal and ethical.
  • It is never quitting. It is not what you do, it is who you are.
  • It is a mentality.
  • There are lot of people out there that want to be an entrepreneur but aren’t willing to do the things necessary. They just want the fun.
    • They don’t have the risk tolerance
    • They aren’t willing to delay gratification
    • They don’t understand everything that goes into it.

At the 29 min mark, Dave talks about how he was grinding and pushing so hard, that he woke up one day and started getting ready for work and his wife looked at him and said, “What are doing? It is Christmas Day.”

“To get things in life that most people in life don’t ever achieve, you have to be willing to do things that other people are not willing to do.”

What advice do you have for those looking to build their business while working a job?

  • Sacrifice. You will have to sacrifice to make it.
  • You will have to delay gratification and think long term.
  • None of us are guaranteed a tomorrow, so we must make the most of it.
  • Make sure you are living your authentic self.
  • At some point, you will reach a point where you entrepreneur income equals you job income and that is freeing and empowering.
  • For Dave, his job came first as his primary source of income, and he did whatever he had to give an honest day’s work for an honest day’s pay.
  • Dave stayed longer than he had because he could do both well and it helped him to have extra cash to pay debt and other things.
  • “When you start, you need your job. In the middle, you want your job. And in the end, you are done with your job.” How you make decisions in life is reflective of needs and wants and where your priorities are in life. Dave got to a point where he did not have to do overtime, etc. ​

At the 38 min mark, Dave and I talk about self-education and the important of that journey in helping you as an entrepreneur. Don’t every stop pushing the envelop when it comes to your self-development.

 

Best Quote: To get things in life that most people in life don’t ever achieve, you have to be willing to do things that other people are not willing to do.

 

Dave's Misfit 3:

  1. Be your authentic self. The beauty of business ownership is that you get to decide what your business looks like and what it doesn’t.
  2. Be passionate about something. Live a fulfilled life. Do not be here to “exist.”
  3. Serve others. Look for opportunities to make a difference. Always do what is right.

Show Sponsors:

Athletic Greens (Free Year Supply of Vitamin D and 5 Travel Packs)

AthleticGreens.com/Misfit

Five Minute Journal

www.MisfitEntrepreneur.com/Journal

 

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