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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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Now displaying: 2021

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!

Dec 29, 2021

Misfit Nation! Welcome to the Misfit Entrepreneur 2021 year in review where each year I attempt to boil down all of the incredible, useful information, strategies, and tips that our guests have given on the show into less than one hour for you…with a few surprises thrown in. Now, it’s impossible for me to go over every single best piece of advice and that is why I urge you to take some time and go through the Misfit Archives to see which episodes resonate most with you, but in doing this episode, my goal is to spur ideas – to give you a lightning strike that propels you down a path of action to better improve yourself, your life, and your business or career in 2022!

That’s why I do this show – to not only provide a treasure trove of some of the best information to succeed in life and business for my daughter, Hannah, for when she grows up, but to give you a place where you know you can come each and every week to get inspired and find real, tried and tested tips, secrets, and strategies to succeed in all areas of life, and to share different perspectives from some of the highest performing entrepreneurs in the world with you. I truly believe that one great episode can change someone’s life and that’s what we set out to do each and every week. ​

But, before I begin I want to tell you something. I want to say “Thank YOU.” Thank you for listening. Thank you for your support of the show and thank you for sharing our message. Without you and the amazing feedback members of this audience give me every week, it would not be half of what it is. Because of you, this show has reached hundreds of thousands of people in over 150 countries. I am truly humbled and in awe at what we’ve done together and I am excited about having an even bigger impact with your help in 2022. So, from the bottom of my heart, Thank you, thank you, thank you!

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, and I hope you enjoy this episode as much as I did creating it for you!

 

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Dec 22, 2021

This week’s Misfit Entrepreneur is Jose “Caya” Cayasso. Caya is a serial entrepreneur who is best known for founding Slidebean and Recurring. He is a TEDx speaker, 40 under 40 recipient and has received a host of other awards for his efforts.

Slidebean is part of the Silicon Valley accelerator, 500 Startups and has grown tremendously. The company helps startups solve their pitch deck needs,

What I love most about Caya is how he has built his companies made them successful through organic efforts through content strategies. In fact, his YouTube channel has over 300,000 subscribers. I’m excited for him to share his strategies with you.

www.youtube.com/c/Slidebean

Caya says he made it to where he is a little bit by accident. In his first company, he didn’t really understand what a startup was. He just built a little game and put it on Kickstarter, and it got picked up. That lead to investors reaching out asking if he was raising money, etc. He didn’t know what they were talking about. He had to go through the crash course of learning the startup and investment game with the first company which didn’t end up making it. But, with Slidebean, he has learned from his mistakes and experience and has applied as well as shared with others to help them.

Talk about finding a business accelerator and how that helped you and helps startups…

  • There is a big debate on whether it is worth to give up equity to an accelerator.
  • Accelerators are fantastic crash courses in how to navigate a startup giving you the training and information you need to succeed. They give you guidance, teach how to pitch and better run your business and help you with their network.
  • They are a great bridge for a soft landing as a startup.

Benefits and disadvantages?

  • If you have the network and connections and access to investment, then you may not need one.
  • Accelerators also require equity in exchange for working with them.
  • It is usually about 6% equity for a 6-figure check, so it is not a bad trade off for companies that little to no revenue and no profit.
  • The biggest advantage outside of capital is the resources available and that they bring to the table.

What makes a great pitch deck?

  • A pitch deck is your business story.
  • It doesn’t matter how many slides, but it matters how you tell you story and the data you use.
  • You typically have to send your deck into investors for them to review and decide if they will meet with you.
  • Investors on average will spend 4 minutes looking at your slides.
  • So, you have to tell your story in essentially 4 minutes.

Any specific elements that should be in a pitch deck?

  • How you are going to make money for the investor.
  • A good structure is the following:
    • Intro: Who you are and a little bit of a teaser.
    • Status Quo: This how the market is behaving today, and this is the pain point that can be solved. Problem slide, business opportunity slide, solutions slide.
    • Product/Demo: Showcases the solution and how it makes money. This where you brag.
    • Market: State of the market, how big it is, competition, and how you will beat the competition.
    • Why Us?: Team, why you are the best to solve the problem and maybe a why now it is needed.
    • Ask for Money: How much you need, how you will use it, and how it will make vision reality.

You’ve built your companies leveraging content, tell us about the content strategies you’ve used to grow your businesses – what works, what doesn’t?

  • YouTube was sort of an accident. It was to market for Slidebean but became more for people following Caya and his journey.
  • You want to create that generates SEO – it’s interesting, it has good data, it is worthy of sharing and people want to share it.
  • Spend time up front to really understand key words to incorporate into your content to make sure Google is associated you appropriately.
  • AdWords is possible, but you need to know your metrics well to make it profitable.

Best practices for creating content and optimizing SEO?

  • SEO is a science and an art. You have to understand Google scoring and need good engineers to build a website that is optimized to it.
  • Creating compelling content is hard.
  • You need to have consistent content at a consistent frequency.
  • You also should be focused on doing good long-form content in the form of articles or white papers that is highly consumable.
  • It also takes time.
  • SEO is not the best first growth tactic to go after because of the time it takes to start ranking – it is the long game.
  • Better growth tactics when starting out are to work closely with your clients and get referrals. You also need their feedback to make things better.
  • You want to start SEO and content marketing as soon as you can, but the focus early on needs to be customers.
  • To get customers, you can use outbound email, prospecting, networking, paid media and search ads – direct response that can get you customers right away. 

Tell us about using video and your strategy for YouTube…

  • YouTube is as long a game as SEO/content and is more expensive.
  • Caya’s average video costs a couple thousand dollars to produce
  • But the connection you can create with customers and prospects on YouTube is so much better and viral.
  • YouTube is the 2nd largest search engine in the world.
  • Long-term video is better than text for marketing and creating community and a following.
  • YouTube is more art than science – but it requires both.
  • One hack is targeting searches where the key word or phrase is underserved or the videos in the category or crappy.

At the 33 min mark, Caya gives his thoughts on raising capital and then stewarding it and making sure it is used in the best way. Its best to just listen.

Most important things you’ve learned to succeed as an entrepreneur?

  • Prepare yourself for how long of a journey it is.
  • It is easy to get distracted – prepare yourself to be at in a business for 5-7 years to make it truly successful.

Best advice for someone just starting out?

  • Choosing the right time to raise money. You have to be ready and be in the right position.
  • You need a product and some testing done prior.
  • It is super time intensive and there is a lot of rejection.
  • Be prepared to spend 2-3 months not being able to run your business – raising money is a full-time job.
  • The business should be able to run without the CEO, meaning the team can continue growing it before the CEO commits to raising money.

 

Best Quote: A pitch deck is your business story...

 

Caya's Misfit 3: ​

  1. Learn when to give up. Time is the most valuable asset that you have. Give yourself a deadline for your projects and respect that deadline. Be prepared to quit.
  2. Start ASAP. The younger you are, the easier it is to start businesses and possibly fail. It is easier to take risks.
  3. Do something that you absolutely enjoy.

 

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Dec 15, 2021

Many years ago, I introduced a new format that alongside our regular episodes called “Lessons for Hannah.” Hannah is my daughter and one of the main inspirations for the Misfit Entrepreneur. I wanted to have a place where she could go and learn from her daddy and his Misfit friends throughout her life…. even after I am gone. If you haven’t listened to the first episode of Lessons for Hannah, I urge you to as it gives some more background and tells the amazing story of how Hannah came to be in our lives.

Lessons for Hannah are short, very useful, and sometimes comical lessons, that I want to share with you and give to Hannah to help in your lives. Because I want Hannah to have these for her life, I’m going to speak as though I am talking directly to her. These episodes are a lot of fun and if you think there is a lesson that we should include in these episodes, please don’t hesitate to send it over to us at support@misfitentrepreneur.com. We’d love to share it.

Ok, so here goes…this week’s Lesson for Hannah.

Hannah,

As this is the last Lessons for Hannah of 2021, I wanted to share the 3 biggest lessons I am taking away from this past year. First, I have to say, the last two years have been incredibly eye-opening, awe-inspiring, humbling, and scary and exciting at the same time. Thinking about it. It is truly amazing how much has transpired. We entered 2020 like any other year with plans and goals for life and business and just a few months later everything was thrown upside down and seemingly overnight fear gripped the world and life as we knew it stopped. For entrepreneurs like me who have different businesses in addition to my family responsibilities, it was a rollercoaster as we literally overnight had to change our businesses to keep them going and for many, find ways to even stay in business. Our employees depended on us to help them in the time of crisis and we had to step up. Additionally, our family life changed with restrictions, mandates, and a general fear of the unknown.

But, we made it through 2020 and for the most part we were able to keep our businesses and lives going as close to normal as possible. As I think about, it is funny and not funny, how much “normal” has changed for the world in just a couple years.

We then came into 2021 and the world seemed to perpetuate many of the things we were originally supposed to do for the short term in fighting the virus. I know for me, it seemed like things waned on a lot longer than they should have and as I write this, in many places things lockdowns, restrictions, and mandates are all still going on. In fact, Australia literally has camps people are having to stay in if they are not vaccinated or test positive. They are literally going into communities and rounding people up against their will. And that is not the only place things like this are happening. We have been fortunate that we live in a place where we have been able to get back to do things mostly the way we did before the virus, and I thank God for that. I thank God for a lot of things, and I pray the blessings given to us are given to others who need them more.

As I have reflected on all of this, I have found many lessons to take away or that were confirmed for me over the last year or so. Here are the 3 most important for me.

Lesson #1: Press On.

I’ve always been one to push through and keep going. To find a way and make a way. I think any entrepreneur who has been at it long enough and found success has to do so. There have been so many times over the years building businesses where failure and losing it all was seemingly one day away. But through tremendous effort, ingenuity, a little luck, and a lot of miracles, my business partners and I have been able to make it. Being an entrepreneur will teach you what it means to endure. The big thing about the last year or so was that we had to endure in all areas of our lives. It wasn’t just one area – but every aspect. We had to do in business, in our families, relationships, health – everywhere. That is truly something.

As I thought about this and gained a sincere appreciation for what people around the world have had to press on through and endure, it crystalized for me. I am not sure I ever understood what it truly means to do this. What true difficulty and sacrifice on a grand scale looks like.

Many people have probably seen the poster of Winston Churchill, the Prime Minister of England during WWII, that says “Keep calm and carry on.” A lot of people use the phrase or hang the poster up. But, now after seeing what the world had gone through and done to itself over the last two years, I can better understand how important that phrase was. Think about, when this was being said, Britain was being bombed almost every day by the German Luftwaffe, essentially the German air force. The whole country was burning for years, and things were destroyed everywhere, not to mention all of the death. In fact, when it was all over, much of the countries of Europe were in rubble with millions upon millions dead. Keep calm and carry on. Through it all, the people of these countries pressed on.

I don’t believe what we have gone through with the virus is comparable to the devastation and death of World Wars – but then I think the small business, the local gym, restaurant, or haircut shop that was shut down for months on end and many had to close their doors for good. It may not have been a physical bomb that dropped from a plane that blew up their building and business, but the result was the same. Yet, people press on. We endure and we continue to. Hannah after having gone through this experience, I am more confident now that you and our fellow man can handle anything that comes our way.

Lesson #2: The Truth is Precious.

I think we take the truth for granted. We assume people and groups are truthful, when they may not be, or they take a piece of the truth and mix it with untruth. It is important for us to seek the real truth and not just believe what we see in a headline, a twitter post, from the media, or even people who are “in charge” telling us something. We must ask further questions and do research diligently to find the truth – and it’s worth it to do the work.

We have so many examples from this year in which snap judgements were made without the truth or evidence or perpetuating a narrative was more important than the truth. We’ve had top medical experts flip-flop many times on what to do for our health – almost weekly in a lot of cases. We’ve had people that the media had deemed completely guilty totally exonerated when they went to trial and the evidence was finally revealed. And conversely, we’ve had people that the media and even politicians stood behind and said they were victims, only to find when the evidence came out that they were the ones perpetuating the crime against themselves for publicity- creating a hoax.

We must not take things for granted and ask “What is the truth.” Because the truth seems harder to come by and is precious and there is only one version of it. There is no such thing as “your truth” or “their truth,” there is only one truth. And we must, must be truthful not just in our lives with others, but to ourselves. It not only helps us live a better life, but to be better in all areas of life.

That brings me to my last lesson.

Lesson #3: Know Your Principles and What You Stand For. Do Not Sacrifice Them.

There is not much more I should have to say on that point. Do you know what you stand for? Do you know what your principles are? For context, here is the definition of Principles - a fundamental truth or proposition that serves as the foundation for a system of belief or behavior or for a chain of reasoning. So, what is your foundation? What is it that you truly will not sacrifice even if not doing so brings pain, loss, or causes trouble in your life? Hannah, I hope by growing up with your mother and I, you have developed solid principles that you know in your heart and will not give up for anything. Please do the deep work to ask yourself what yours are and know them – because over the last year or so, I have seen many sacrifice what they said were core principles in the lives and on the world stage for personal gain or power. It is not worth it, it never is. And sacrificing these in your life will create much bigger problems than if you had endured and stuck to them in the moment they were challenged.

Hannah, while we are still going through these challenging times, I see more potential and opportunity for people than ever before. People are waking up to finding their principles and seeking the real truth as a bedrock to build from – and they are pressing on and creating a better life for themselves and a better world for all of us. Even at 9 years old, you are doing this in your own way – in fact, it was during this time that you pressed on, endured, and overcame many challenges to get your black belt in Tai Kwan Do. I could not be prouder of you and I hope you put these lessons to work throughout your life.

I love you,

Daddy

 

Best Quote: Hannah after having gone through this experience, I am more confident now that you and our fellow man can handle anything that comes our way.

 

Misfit 3:

  1. Press On.
  2. The Truth is Precious.
  3. Know Your Principles and What You Stand For. Do Not Sacrifice Them.
Dec 8, 2021

This week’s Misfit Entrepreneur is Jeffrey Madoff. Jeff is the founder of Madoff Productions, based in New York City. His company collaborates with ad agencies, public relations firms and directly with clients to produce commercials, branded content and live streaming events.

He began his career as a fashion designer and was chosen as one of the top 10 designers in the U.S. then switched careers to film and video production. You have seen his work and probably didn’t even know it. Jeff and his team are the geniuses behind commercials, online content and brand stories for companies ranging from Victoria's Secret, Calvin Klien, and Ralph Lauren to Harvard University and private equity firms that position companies for sale or acquisition.

Jeff is also the author of the best-seller, Creative Careers Making a Living With Your Ideas.

And that is why I asked him to come on the show, not only the share his incredible wisdom gained during this storied career, but to discuss how to make a great living with your ideas.

www.MadoffProductions.com

www.CreativeCareers.com

Jeff was born and raised in Akron, Ohio. He credits his resilience to growing up there. His parents were entrepreneurs that had retail stores in Akron. Jeff got the entrepreneurial spirit from his parents and so did his sister. It was what he knew, so he’s never had a job. He went to the University of Wisconsin for college. Jeff shares a funny story of how he chose Wisconsin. He also made it on to the wrestling team. He got a double major in philosophy and psychology and Jeff said, “It set him up for no job whatsoever!”

Getting the degrees did help him with critical thinking and an intellectual curiosity that are very important to success.

He was working in a small boutique in Madison after graduating. A good friend of his called him up and had saved some money and wanted to put it to work. Jeff told him that he understood retail and could draw/design clothing, so he could start a clothing company. His friend sent him $2500 which was more money than Jeff had ever seen at any one time and he was off and running. He had no idea how to build the business but knew how to sell retail. He didn’t know how clothing was manufactured, etc. He had a lot to learn in a little time.

He was “ignorant, not stupid.” “Ignorant, you can learn, but stupid is forever.”

What is the process you teach for turning an idea into a living?

  • The book “Creative Careers: Making a Living with Your Ideas” is the same name as the course he teaches in NYC.
  • Jeff learned when he started into business was that there are protocols to business and everything you learn informs everything else you do.
  • For example, clothing started with a sketch. From there, it determines how much fabric is needed, the labor, the shipping, sale prices, profit margin, etc. The idea starts the ball rolling.
  • Everything is unified with best practices, but many times they are siloed. They should not be…there is much more in common, than different from business to business. Much of the processes are the same to make an idea happen across different businesses.
  • There are no magical secrets to success – there is a lot of work. More than anything, it takes perseverance.
  • We cannot lose the patience for process because that is where real success comes from.

After all of the work you did for the book and all of the people you interviewed for it, were there any constants that stood out across them that helped their success?

  • They embody best practices.
  • They show up and are present.
  • The persevere and put in the work.
  • They surround themselves with the good and right people to make the business go.
  • They develop a sense of empathy in business to understand the other side in negotiation and building relationships.
  • More than anything, they push through the difficult times and develop strategies to get over, around, and overcome the challenges that entrepreneurship inevitably brings.

At the 18 min mark, we talk about the DCP formula and how Jeff has seen in his work.

“The only way you get better at anything is to do it over and over again.”

At the 20 min mark, Jeff shares some interesting thoughts on Apple vs. Sony.

  • Apple has never originated a product.
  • They copied and innovated.
  • They sell their products not on what they do, but the experience it gives.
  • They are truly unique.
  • Jeff worked with Sony when they originated the Walkman and Sony was visionary in creating and whole new way of life when it came to music.
  • Apple basically took the idea of the Walkman to create the Ipod.
  • Same thing with the smartphone. Apple stood on the shoulders of the Palm Pilot and Blackberry creating a broad consumer market for the phone and increased their eco-system.
  • What Apple did well was design something with great purpose and had the discipline to stick to their focus and product set and not get into businesses that are not really their business.
  • Companies lose the ability to innovate because they spread themselves thin.

Talk about the power of story when it comes to marketing and branding and how important it is.

  • Basically, we communicate through story.
  • It is how we retain information because you remember how a story made you feel.
  • Stories are the way we bond with each other and it is how products are sold.
  • Nike is a great example. “Just do it” is so simple, but means so much.
  • Nike is about athletic excellence, but more the idea of it for clients.
  • Ralph Lauren stands for status and good taste.

At the 27 min mark, Jeff shares a story of a conversation with Ralph Lauren where he told him he was like Walt Disney.

  • A brand is a story that is well told.
  • One of the main criteria of a good story is there needs to be an outcome and they live happily ever after meaning the customer will be better off for it.

Talk about the balance of emotion vs. logic and how it relates to business…

  • The push and pull between emotion and logic is interesting.
  • Most people think they make their decisions based on logic, but they don’t.
  • People are not nearly as logical as they think.
  • There are 2 ways that decisions are made: Heuristics and Biases
  • If you appeal to those things, you can lead people to make decisions.

At the 31 min mark, Jeff shares a story of something a guest shared in his class when it comes to how we make decisions with an example of buying a bottle of wine.

  • Most people pick in the middle of the range of wines for price because they don’t want to buy the most expensive, but they don’t want to buy the cheapest one.
  • So, if you up the overall price of the selection of wine in a store, you will sell wine at higher prices.

How do we make better decisions as consumers?

  • Be informed.
  • Educate yourself.
  • Do your research and think about larger decisions before you make them.
  • Find and use credible sources to help you.

The difference between wander vs. wonder, explain that.

  • Wandering makes you wonder.
  • When you wander and take in your surroundings, it makes you wonder which leads to curiosity.
  • Curiosity leads to asking better questions and leads to learning and better understanding.
  • The only stupid question is the one you don’t ask which leads to you having issues later on.

Running your ideas like a business. Tell us about that.

  • One of the most important things in business is “proof of concept” meaning someone is willing to pay for your product.
  • You cannot be the only one in love with your idea. There has to be people willing to part with their hard-earned money to buy it.
  • Ideas need to go through the proof-of-concept process. ​

What has surprised you most in your entrepreneur journey?

  • How there is so much more in common among different disciplines and people. There is a lot more in common than different. We have to be careful not to focus solely on the different.
  • The essence of being an entrepreneur is bringing some kind of change by brining an idea to life.

 

Best Quote: The only way you get better at anything is to do it over and over again.

 

Jeff's Misfit 3:

  1. Persistence. Whatever you are pursuing, you will face inevitable difficulties and you must persist through them.
  2. Not being so enamored with your own idea that you cannot accept criticism and make it better. Don’t become delusional.
  3. Stay curious. Curiosity is the fuel that makes you want to learn more and grow.

 

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Dec 1, 2021

This week’s Misfit Entrepreneur is Kelly Falardeau. Kelly is one of the most sought-after speakers out there today. Rated as a Top 10 Most Powerful and influential Speaker, she has graced international stages all over the world and is a 5x Best-Selling author.

At age 2, Kelly was in a tragic accident that severely burned 75% of her body. She endured numerous surgeries but was left with scars on most of her body. Growing up, she as bullied, made fun of, and ostracized for looking different leading her to feeling unwanted, un-ashamed, and unloved. She endured once again discovering true self-love and as she says, turned her scars into stars, and is now widely successful.

Kelly has proven that no matter where you come from or what happens to you – you can succeed and thrive and I’m excited for her to share all her wisdom with you in this episode. ​

http://kellyfalardeau.com/

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Kelly was burned over most of her body when she was 2 years old when a spark from a fire caught her dress on fire. She was in the hospital for 4 months being in the operating room every two days. Every two years after that until she was 20, she had to go back for more surgeries. Because of this, she never thought she’d have a good life and that she would be the “ugly, scar-face, girl.”

When she was 16, she would pray to God asking for him not to let her wake up in the morning, but if she did could she be scarless and pretty like the other girls. Of course, she would wake up and they would still be there. She thought that if her doctor could not take them away or God could not, she was destined to be ugly forever and would not get married or have kids, etc.

Despite all of this, she did end up getting married and having a daughter. She was so excited to have a daughter without scars. She had a miscarriage and then got pregnant again and had twin boys.

She had a home-based scrapbooking business that wasn’t very successful when a friend told her to go to an event. Her friend told her to get rid of the business and be a speaker and the event would help her.

During this time, she was almost bankrupt, her husband was laid off and her marriage wasn’t doing well. She saw her life as a failure. Her friend got her to event and got her on stage to speak and people had a great reaction to her story. She went home and told her husband that she was going to be a speaker. He husband, “Who is going to listen to you?” She didn’t know but knew it could happen. Her husband basically told her it was a waste of time and that it wouldn’t work.

The next day everything changed. She met a lady that was speaking and at the end of her speech, she offered a coaching program to teach people to become keynote speakers. Kelly knew this was her opportunity but had no money to pay for the coaching. The lady told her could pay over time and that normally, people came to her to get coached, but if Kelly could 10 people locally to sign up for coaching, she would come there. Kelly worked with others to get the 10. This was the start of her speaking and best-selling authoring career.

Was there a catalyst for you? What there a moment when you found your voice or flipped the switch?

  • There was a turning point.
  • When she left her husband, she had a job alongside her scrapbooking business.
  • 4 months later after leaving her husband, she went into work and had her performance review.
  • It was the worst review she had ever had. It was either quit or be fire.
  • Her boss said, “You have to ask yourself one question. Are you going to be excited to come to work on Monday? Or relieved if you don’t have to?”
  • She knew she wanted to be a speaker full time but was afraid. She had no money.
  • That night she was reading and saw a message that said, “Why do you not trust that God will provide you everything you need?” She slammed the magazine shut and had a dialogue with herself and God.
  • She had sleepless night and went into work the next morning and knew she wasn’t excited to be there. That was her last day and the start of her being a full-time speaker and author.

Everyone had scars in some way, shape or form. How do we turn our “scars into starts” isolating these things and use them as fuel to succeed?

  • We all have either internal and external scars, or both in some way.
  • It is totally up to us to decide what we are going to do with them.
  • It is a choice.
  • You can take your scars and use them for something great.
  • Kelly always wondered why she had lived. She was told by her care takers that the extent of her scaring was so bad that they did not think she could live.
  • You can use your scars to hold you back or to be an asset for your success and impact on the world. You are here for a reason – make the absolute best out of it.

7 ways to embrace the real you? Can you share those?

  • A lot of people think they have to change themselves physically to be good enough.
  • You don’t have to do this to embrace yourself.
  • One way is to look in the mirror and pick out all of the things you love about yourself.
  • Embrace what you love.
  • Learn to love your little parts that make up all of you.
  • Quit comparing yourself to others. When you compare yourself to someone else that you think it better, you dimmish yourself.
  • Never give up or give in.
  • Seek out great mentors for your life.

No risk, no reward – what that mean to you and what it should it mean to us?

  • When she wrote the book, she didn’t have the title until the very end.
  • Life is for living.
  • If we don’t take the risk, we have not shot at gaining the rewards.
  • We need to step out and take the risks in our life worth taking.
  • We all need the 20 seconds of “insane bravery”

At the 33 min mark, Kelly talks about how her experience has made her a better entrepreneur…

Advice for entrepreneurs just starting out?

  • Make sure you are doing something you are and can remain passionate about.
  • Don’t’ be afraid to let go and find what you are meant to do with your life and as an entrepreneur.
  • Unleash your life.
  • Be open to other opportunities because you will be amazed at what is out there.
  • Dreams are meant to be found and not tucked away in dreamland.

 

Best Quote: We all have either internal and external scars, or both in some way. It is totally up to us to decide what we are going to do with them. You can take your scars and use them for something great.

 

Kelly's Misfit 3:

  1. Dreams are meant to be found, not tucked away in dreamland.
  2. Your value is in your acts of service and what you do for others. Value has nothing to do with money.
  3. Find a mentor you really connect with.

 

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Nov 24, 2021

Misfit Entrepreneurs,

Welcome to this special Thanksgiving edition of The Misfit Entrepreneur. Since, it is a day of thanks here in the US, I thought it best to take some time to thank you and share some thoughts on the importance of this day. First, I want to thank you. Thank you for your support, for your wonderful feedback, and sharing of this show. It has reached a level I didn’t envision when I started doing this all those years ago and it continues to exceed my expectations because of you – the best audience in the world.

As I said when I started, it is Thanksgiving and when we think of Thanksgiving, we think of pilgrims and native Americans coming together for a feast together. And they did, but that is not where the holiday of Thanksgiving actually came from. As you know I love history and I thought it would be great to share with you how this day started and share my message for you.

Thanksgiving as a holiday in the US started with a proclamation in 1789. A proclamation by the George Washington – the indispensable man.

Real quick ADD moment here – George Washington is one my favorite leaders in history and his accomplishments, virtues, and leadership are un-matched in this world. If you want to learn about what it truly means to be a great leader. Read the book The Real George Washington. When you do, you will see how he was seemingly guided by God’s hand to be who he was in the making of our nation. The things that had to happen to get him to where he lead the Continental military and then became President are not by coincidence.

Ok, back to the proclamation. It is short, but powerful and I would like to read it to you. By the President of the United States of America, a Proclamation.

Whereas it is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to implore his protection and favor-- and whereas both Houses of Congress have by their joint Committee requested me to recommend to the People of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many signal favors of Almighty God especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness.

Now therefore I do recommend and assign Thursday the 26th day of November next to be devoted by the People of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being, who is the beneficent Author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be-- That we may then all unite in rendering unto him our sincere and humble thanks--for his kind care and protection of the People of this Country previous to their becoming a Nation--for the signal and manifold mercies, and the favorable interpositions of his Providence which we experienced in the course and conclusion of the late war--for the great degree of tranquility, union, and plenty, which we have since enjoyed--for the peaceable and rational manner, in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national One now lately instituted--for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed; and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and in general for all the great and various favors which he hath been pleased to confer upon us.

and also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech him to pardon our national and other transgressions-- to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually--to render our national government a blessing to all the people, by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed--to protect and guide all Sovereigns and Nations (especially such as have shewn kindness unto us) and to bless them with good government, peace, and concord--To promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the encrease of science among them and us--and generally to grant unto all Mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as he alone knows to be best.

Given under my hand at the City of New York the third day of October in the year of our Lord 1789.

Go: Washington

One of the things that I do not think people realize is how much God’s teachings guided the founders of our country. When you read their own words and understand the reasons for, as they said, “pledging their lives, liberty, and sacred honor” to win their freedom – you find that it was driven by the teachings of the Bible and God’s word. The narrative in today’s world doesn’t allow that, but when you read the pages written by their hand, you begin to truly understand how much divine providence was instrumental in the creation of the United States and subsequent impact it has had on the world for freedom, ingenuity, and possibility. I short, the founders were some seriously devoted, tough entrepreneurs.

And that brings me to my Thanksgiving proclamation.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

On this day, we give thanks. We give thanks to God. We give thanks to free enterprise and the possibility that entrepreneurship brings. And we give thanks to all of those who are with us, support us, and are part of our entrepreneur journey.

On this day, let us celebrate the incredible opportunity and life we have been given. Let us celebrate the ability to create the enterprise and life we desire, for entrepreneurs are a unique group of people that directly shape and change the world. Entrepreneurs have the ability to change lives and make them better and have the opportunity to help others reach their dreams as they reach for theirs.

We entrepreneurs have been given this opportunity and responsibility, not just by our choice to be an entrepreneur, but by our creator who put us on this earth to become the best of ourselves and share it with the world.

For this we must be ever thankful and humble, and we must give every day the best to we have to offer and share with this world. We must never give up or quit in the pursuit of our dreams and we should strive to share entrepreneurship and its benefits with all those around us. Entrepreneurs are what makes the world go. Without entrepreneurs, there are no jobs, no funding for governments, no progress, or no improvement in quality of life. Everything begins with entrepreneurship.

Because of this, we cannot and should not take our responsibility lightly and on this day of thanks, we should unite to as I take and adapt a phrase from George Washington, ”humbly offer our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech him to pardon our business and other transgressions-- to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually and to bless them with peace and concord, and grant unto entrepreneurs a degree of prosperity as he alone knows to be best.

With God’s help, Entrepreneurship is the answer to much of the problems and challenges in our world, and everyone can tap into this spirit within. May they do so and give thanks for the incredible opportunity that it brings.

So, there you go, my proclamation and solute to you entrepreneurs. Let me close by again saying thank you and expressing my gratitude for your support of the Misfit Entrepreneur. I wish you a wonderful, blessed day with your families and a great start to the holiday season!

Dave

 

Best Quote: With God’s help, Entrepreneurship is the answer to much of the problems and challenges in our world, and everyone can tap into this spirit within. May they do so and give thanks for the incredible opportunity that it brings.

 

Misfit 3:

  1. People do not realize how important faith in God and the teachings of the Bible were in creating the United States. George Washington made this clear in his Thanksgiving Proclamation creating the holiday.
  2. With God’s help, Entrepreneurship is the answer to much of the problems and challenges in our world, and everyone can tap into this spirit within. May they do so and give thanks for the incredible opportunity that it brings.
  3. Thank you, thank you, thank you for your support of the show and for spreading entrepreneurship into this world.

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Nov 21, 2021

Hello Misfit Nation! I am excited to bring a special weekend episode of the Misfit Entrepreneur. Occasionally, I find something I truly enjoy and when I do I like to share it with you. In 2021 I’ve started listening more to the immersive shows on Wondery. If you haven’t checked it out, you need to do so.

Recently, I was able to connect with them and they offered to share a small sample of one of their new mini-series made with Topic Studios with the Misfit audience – it’s called Operator.

During the 1-900 number craze of the Nineties, one company provided the vast majority of phone sex. American Telnet was an empire founded by the man who called himself “The Telephone Pimp.” He ran the company “like General Motors” and got filthy rich doing it. But for the (mostly) women who answered the calls and delivered fantasies 24-7, it was a different story. The powerful stigma against sex work was always lurking just beneath the surface, until it threatened to tear apart the whole company. Hosted by Tina Horn (Why Are People Into That?), OPERATOR is an eight-part series about big ambitions, Shakespearean-level corporate backstabbing, men and women at the cutting edge of a technological revolution...and on the front lines of a sexual one.

Listen to Operator now! http://wondery.fm/OP_DL_TME_BE

Nov 17, 2021

This week’s Misfit Entrepreneur is Jamie Meyer. Jamie is the founder of Nine Carat Business Consulting, a firm that has been named one of the Top Australian consulting firms and Jamie has been named one of the Top Australian business strategists. She has a unique focus on clarity and focus into where businesses breakdown and how to prevent or overcome these issues.

As Jamie says, her mission is to reinvigorate businesses, their foundation, future, and approach to progress. Nine Carat strives to mine the gold of everyone and everything giving the ability to close the gap between where a business is and where it wants to be.

I’m excited for her to share how she does it.

https://www.ninecarat.net/

When Jamie was younger, she was the kid that wanted to change the world. As she got older, she got more serious about life. She started working full time at a very early age doing everything from hauling frozen fish to working night shift in the container business. Business came naturally to her. She ultimately ended up running a business in Brisbane, AU that was integrating companies and she was really frustrated because of all the lost potential she could see through the process and the fact that her hands were tied by leadership in doing anything about it.

So, she went out and created 9 Carat out of her frustration and to gain control. The company has evolved greatly, and she now works with major companies helping them step into new areas in their business.

Why did you choose the name 9-Carat for your business?

  • She moved into a house next to a little old couple.
  • The husband was a graphic designer and helped her design the look and logo of 9-Carat.
  • There were 9 areas she wanted to focus on in companies.
  • People would tell her that she would sparkle, and clients would tell her she was a diamond.
  • And diamonds are forged under intense pressure – which is sort of the story of her life.

Take us through your process of how you do what you do and get the results you get for your clients…

  • Companies are unique as human beings and have individuality.
  • There are no one-size fits all path to success for companies.
  • Clarity and expectation are key.
  • You must have clarity of where you are at and where you want to go and why. And the set the expectations needed to get there.

How does a business or business owner get “clarity?”

  • Where you have synergy, you have clarity.
  • If things feel hard, you don’t have synergy or clarity.
  • The way you get clarity is specific to each business, but every business must be clear on their purpose and vision – and those are the basis for getting clarity.

What is the difference between purpose and vision?

  • Purpose is your motivation. It is the ground on which you are taking steps to doing an anything. It aligns with your vision.
  • Vision is where your imagination comes in and you can see what that physically manifests into in a market. Your vision is driven by your motivation.
  • You must be clear on both and must be synergistic with each other and coincide.
  • Purpose is the foundation and vision is the framework.

Where should a business owner start when it comes to purpose and vision?

  • Purpose – your vision will come together as you figure out your purpose and motivation.

Talk about expectations and how they relate to clarity. How does expectation play a role in achieving the vision?

  • There are 2 sides to expectation.
  • The first is the expectation that currently exists in business models – most of the time, they are actually limiting and don’t give much room for leeway.
  • The goal is to re-write the expectations to facilitate substance from people.
  • If you have clarity, everyone will be working toward the vision – how can you expand their expectation or give them the room to contribute their genius in a bigger way and expand it themselves?
  • Let their “unsolicited genius” standout!

Where do see companies have the most problems or breakdown the most?

  • It really is around clarity and expectation.
  • Jamie dives in on this at the 17 min mark and it is best to just listen.
  • A focus just on rules/bureaucracy creates a company full of robots and processing what it is front of them.
  • Companies put in more and more rules when the lack clarity and expectation.

What is success setting and understanding alchemy and bionomics to achieve it?

  • Bionomics is relations in interactions between organisms and their environment. It takes into account every action a business has and how it interacts with its market.
  • Most companies do a lot of things right but understanding why they work so well in one area and then applying that to another area that isn’t doing so well is the key.
  • Alchemy is the work that Jamie and the client does together to make things shine. It’s turning where they are into a new version of success or converting something a much better version of what it is thought to be.

At the 27 min mark, we talk about the book, The Alchemist by Paulo Coehlo and how that has impacted us.

What is the most important thing you do for your business every day as an entrepreneur?

  • Be grateful every day for it.
  • Every day, show it a little bit of love.

What are some of the best lessons you’ve learned as an entrepreneur that have helped you the most?

  • The only person standing in your way is yourself.
  • We don’t realize the conditioned idea of limitation that we have in our lives.
  • Always do something that you’ve never done – be bold.

Best advice for an entrepreneur starting out?

  • Put blinders on to the rest of the world.
  • Put blinders on to the market and competition.
  • Create a business that you are motivated by.
  • Create a vision that speaks to you.

What have you learned about working internationally?

  • You must have patience.
  • Do not get bogged down trying to understand everything – you won’t.
  • You will learn as you go. And what you think you need to know many times is irrelevant.

 

Best Quote: Where you have synergy, you have clarity. If things feel hard, you don’t have synergy or clarity.

 

Jamie's Misfit 3:

  1. Always remember the point right when you are about to give up is where the magic happens – don’t give up.
  2. Always be your own hero.
  3. Always be the novice, but don’t assume everyone already knows what you know. 

 

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Nov 10, 2021

Hello Misfit Nation! Welcome to another edition of "Lessons for Hannah!" Many years ago, I introduced a new format that alongside our regular episodes called “Lessons for Hannah.” Hannah is my daughter and one of the main inspirations for the Misfit Entrepreneur. I wanted to have a place where she could go and learn from her daddy and his Misfit friends throughout her life….even after I am gone. If you haven’t listened to the first episode of "Lessons for Hannah," I urge you to as it gives some more background and tells the amazing story of how Hannah came to be in our lives.

Lessons for Hannah are short, very useful, and sometimes comical lessons, that I want to share with you and give to Hannah to help in your lives. Because I want Hannah to have these for her life, I’m going to speak as though I am talking directly to her. These episodes are a lot of fun and if you think there is a lesson that we should include in these episodes, please don’t hesitate to send it over to us at support@misfitentrepreneur.com. We’d love to share it.

This Weeks' Lesson for Hannah

Hannah, Hannah, this lesson is a little more academic, but very important. I want to talk to you about your rights as a citizen of the United States. Most people will never read the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution Including the Bill of Rights during their life – or at least only read some of it.

I believe that everyone should study these documents throughout their lives. I know, I know. They were written by people 200+ years ago, so how could they make sense today, right? Well, if you study history, especially that of the human species, you’d find that there are some things that don’t really change about us over time. Things like craving power and control or dominating over others never really change. And neither do things like wanting the best for yourself and your family or striving to better your life. And don’t forget the urge to be free. These tendencies and many more have been around since beginning of man. And through time they have suppressed or taken away by kings, tyrants, dictators, and warlords to name a few. The last century alone saw this in Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini, Mao, Polpot, and countless others and it goes on around the world today.

The genius of the founders is that they knew the tendencies of mankind and they knew that needed to create a way to put a “check” on them so that future generations could truly have a chance to prosper and reach their full potential.

That is what they did with the Declaration, Constitution and Bill of Rights.

First and foremost, the Declaration of Independence may be the best “break up letter” of all time. It starts out by stating When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation. Basically, this says that it is necessary for them to break up with England and to provide for themselves in the way God intended with the rights that are God given. But, out of respect they should state the reasons why they are breaking up.

It then goes on to say what the founders believe should be evident to everyone and that is that “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to affect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly, all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.--Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

The founders were saying that we have the right from God to life, liberty (freedom), and to pursue our happiness and that governments should secure these rights for the citizens to do so. But, when the government doesn’t secure these rights and the becomes destructive or outright hostile to them, then the people have the ability to change or get rid of the government so as to put one in that does. But, they go on to say that this should not be done lightly and if possible, it is better to suffer through things than to go this route. And they end with stating that there comes a point where suffering can no longer be tolerated, and it is time to end the King’s rule. They then go in the rest of the document to list all of the things the King has done to them to cause this happen.

Now fast forward a decade or so and the colonies have won the war of Independence and have tried one way of governing that didn’t work, so they have come together to create the United States and form a constitution for governing. The Constitution is an amazing document in that in just a short few pages, it lays out everything needed to govern our country. Contrast that with congress nowadays who passes most bills that are in the thousands of pages. The Constitution is the “check” on the tendencies of mankind that I mentioned before and may be the greatest one ever. But, even when they were done with it, the founders felt it didn’t have everything it needed, so they came up with the first set of amendments to the constitution just to make sure. Remember, they had just fought for independence and were very wary of giving government any major power at all. They were smart.

They created the first 10 Amendments which are as follows:

Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

This one, most have heard and allows for freedom of religion and the press as well as the t people peaceable assemble and petition the govern for changes based on the grievances they have with it. It does not mean burning down cities, looting and beating other people in the streets, or cancelling someone because you don’t like what they say or stand for or aren’t getting your way.

Amendment II

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

This gives the right for people to own guns and be armed and states that it shall not infringed which means it shall not be tampered with any way. You’ll notice this amendment is the only place that word is used. Another thing that is important to note that in all the instances where dictators took over and/or took control of society in the past century, they did everything they could to abolish the ability for the citizens to own guns in their countries. All of those dictators and tyrants I mentioned earlier did this on their way to slaughtering their citizens by the millions. It is another check on the tendency of mankind.

Amendment III

No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

This is an interesting one today because we don’t put soldiers in homes, but there is debate on what is considered a soldier in today’s world. If the government is watching you in your home through your internet searches or phones calls and is using the military to do so, aren’t they essentially camped in your home? I think this debate will rage on.

Amendment IV

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

This goes with the last one in that the government is not allowed to “Search” without probably cause with a warrant that defines what they are searching for and why. Again, there is major debate about the government’s ability to search what you are doing through your devices and a host of other mediums without a warrant – especially under the Patriot Act. There are cases in court all the time around this.

Amendment V

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

This states that someone cannot be tried again for the same crime if found not guilty of it. Additionally, it states that you cannot be compelled to incriminate yourself. This what is happening when you hear someone say they won’t answer and “plead the 5th.” It also states that any property taken by the government or law enforcement can only be done with giving just compensation. There are a lot of lawsuits that happen around that every year.

Amendment VI

In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.

This amendment states that you have a right to trial when accused of a crime and that shall be with an impartial court and jury as well as give you the right to confront those accusing you. This is critical to having a solid justice system.

Amendment VII

In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.

This just sets the value for going to court in common law cases and having a jury.

Amendment VIII

Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

This makes sure that the courts can’t hold you by imposing a bail sum so high no one could pay it. It also doesn’t allow excessive fines or cruel and unusual punishment. A lot of lawsuits are files around this on each year as well.

Amendment IX

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

This is a big one as it states that the just because they aren’t in the constitution, there are other rights that people have, and they are retained by them.

Amendment X

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

The 10th amendment is very important in that it basically says that the powers not stated in the constitution to the Federal Government or prohibited from the states, are given to the states, effectively the people because they make up the states. In other words, the Federal Government can only have the powers in these documents and the states have the all the rest.

That was the point of the US. To keep the Federal Government small and let the states govern themselves the way their people wanted to govern. The states were little laboratories of Democracy and Republicanism and if a state did something their citizens didn’t like, they could change or move to another state doing the things they liked. It was never intended to have an overarching Federal Government in control of the states and in some ways instituted in some aspect or another of people’s every day lives.

Along the way, the US drifted from it and that is conversation for another day. But knowing your Declaration, Constitution, and Bill of Rights will help you clearly see where they are being violated and where you can help to get thing back on track as a citizen. The United States became the greatest country ever created because of these simple documents and principles and the more we understand them, even in our world today so many years later, the better our country will be and continue to be the greatest place for everyone on earth to come and pursue their happiness.

Hannah, I hope you read these documents and reflect on them often as you go through life to uphold them and teach them to others.

I love you,

Daddy

 

Best Quote: The genius of the founders is that they knew the tendencies of mankind and they knew that needed to create a way to put a “check” on them so that future generations could truly have a chance to prosper and reach their full potential.

 

Misfit 3:

  1. Most people will never read the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution Including the Bill of Rights during their life – or at least only read some of it. I believe that everyone should study these documents throughout their lives.
  2. The Declaration of Independence may be the best “break up letter” of all time. Basically, this says that it is necessary for them to break up with England and to provide for themselves in the way God intended with the rights that are God given. But, out of respect they should state the reasons why they are breaking up.
  3. The United States became the greatest country ever created because of these simple documents and principles and the more we understand them, even in our world today so many years later, the better our country will be and continue to be the greatest place for everyone on earth to come and pursue their happiness.

 

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Nov 3, 2021

This week’s Misfit Entrepreneur is Kirk Cooper. Kirk is the founder of Ecom Automation Gurus, a company that creates turnkey Amazon stores for entrepreneurs. He is a former high school teacher who looked to entrepreneurship to fund his dreams. He loved teaching, but it wasn’t going to pay him what he knew he could be worth.

In 2013, after succeeding in flipping some real estate, Kirk started investing time in Amazon and selling online. He spent his evenings tinkering and eventually created an almost $50k per month business on Amazon. He perfected his model over time and started Ecom to help others do the same. And now has done so with clients all over the world to the point where his business is now worth over $50 million.

I bet you can guess why I asked him to come on the show. I’m excited for him the share his secrets and process of how he built his business and create a fully automated online business.

www.ecomautomationgurus.com

@KirkCooperCEO on Instagram

Kirk loved teaching and coaching. He came from those roots. Many family members were teachers, and it was what he knew. He enjoyed it, but it wasn’t fulfilling his entrepreneur spirit. He wanted time freedom. He also wanted to help others grow and succeed. And doing what he does now, he is still teaching, coaching, and inspiring.

What did you figure out on how to succeed on Amazon?

  • Failing was a big part of it.
  • He tried a number of different businesses while working and wasn’t that successful.
  • He had to find something that allowed him to hold onto his security blanket (job) a little longer and build the business.
  • He decided to dedicate his evenings to the Ecom space, and it didn’t take that long.
  • But, as individual, he worked himself into another job as he had to maintain his store and keep up with everything 24/7/365.
  • He knew he could not sustain it, so he put together a small group of contractors and over the course of several months taught them how to run his store and eventually turned it over them to run full time.
  • He actually made more money and spent a lot less time in doing this and that is where the idea for Ecom was born.
  • He started small and focused over the course of a couple years with a small number of clients to perfect the model and then started to exponentially grow the business.

At the 12 min mark, Kirk takes us step by step through how his business works.

  • 90-95% of his clients have no idea how to operate an ecommerce store.
  • 90-95% choose to do drop ship vs. fulfilled by Amazon.
  • They are looking for a more hands off business where they provide the capital, and the income is passive.
  • Ecom does all setup, research, product listing, customer support, order fulfillments, etc.
  • Clients outsource the end-to-end business to them

Talk to us about selling on Amazon, what should people know?

  • And what is the difference between drop shipping vs. Fulfilled by Amazon. Nothing about it is guaranteed. Like any investment there is risk and reward.
  • Amazon makes the rules, and they change them, so Ecom has to pivot and keep up to stay successful.
  • Nothing is 100% guaranteed, but Ecom has a great track record.
  • Amazon is the biggest third-party marketplace out there.
  • The drop ship model is appealing because clients don’t have to hold inventory and pay to do so, so it is much less capital intensive than Amazon FBA.
  • You also can be more nimble competition-wise.
  • Drop-shipping has smaller margins, but it allows you to capitalize on many different products based on what is popular and needed at that time.

What is it that a client is responsible for in working with you and Ecom?

  • To bring capital.
  • You are paid every two weeks from Amazon, so you have to have capital (credit) to be able to buy and ship to customers while you are waiting the short time to be paid.
  • Amazon takes 15% of the gross and Ecom takes 35% of the NET profit.

So, what is the risk? There has to be some.

  • The biggest risk is keeping up with Amazon, especially when it comes to fixing account issues.
  • Sometimes, Amazon AI flags accounts and will put them on hold and not payout while an issue is resolved, so this causes delays.
  • It doesn’t happen all the time, but it can and does happen.
  • Amazon has a lot of scammers working them all the time, so their systems are always on the lookout for anything that may look like one, even if it isn’t.
  • Ecom is experienced in working on these things, but they have to be worked through.

Can you explain the benefits of buying an existing store?

  • This is where you located an age store that has been around for awhile and has good reviews and a solid track record with sales.
  • It helps you to start off on better ground, so you don’t have to build up the account.
  • They are also able to be scaled much faster and get cash flow for clients vs. waiting 6+ months on a brand-new store.

Anything else on the topic of selling online?

  • If you are not going to invest the time to do it yourself, do your homework on companies like Ecom that you can outsource to.

How has your teaching/coaching background helped you succeed as an entrepreneur?

  • It is your job as a teacher/coach to be a leader helping growing children with the learning and being a person, they can trust to come to and help with that.
  • That strength has helped Kirk in building his business.
  • A teacher and coach helps somebody and there is no great feeling in the world than helping people.

At the 31-minute mark, we discuss the little things being done in the business and how they allow it grow and scale.  Best practices?

  • Don’t be afraid to outsource
  • Put yourself in a position to be most successful by putting others in the position they can be most successful.
  • Automate, automate, automate.

Principles to build a great business?

  • Integrity
  • Honesty
  • Being available for clients Great training and coaching ​

Craziest thing you’ve seen on your journey?

  • In the arena of ecom, the sky is the limit. It’s possible to make 10’s of thousands of dollars per month outsourcing your business.
  • It’s amazing how many ways and opportunities are out to create income streams to change your life.

 

Best Quote: Put yourself in a position to be most successful by putting others in the position they can be most successful.

 

Kirk's Misfit 3:

  1. It is Ok to fail in whatever you do. Failing is a part of creating your path and being successful.
  2. Outsource, build a team, and grow and scale. Build your foundation first and go from there.
  3. Always be looking for additional streams of income. Look at it them like legs on a chair, if you lose one, you can still stand, so create as many as you can.

 

Show Sponsors:

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The David vs. Goliath Podcast

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