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38 | Success Beyond the Cubicle: Strategies from a Business Success Mentor | Sean Atkinson

38 | Success Beyond the Cubicle: Strategies from a Business Success Mentor | Sean Atkinson

Former Corporate Executive turned Business Success Coach


Meet Sean Atkinson, a former corporate executive turned business success coach. Drawing from his corporate journey, he guides entrepreneurs to achieve their goals. Tune in to his podcast for actionable strategies and insights on navigating the world of business, tailored for aspiring and established entrepreneurs alike.

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Show Notes


Hey y'all this is your host, Elyse Robinson with the nobody wants to work through podcast season 2. I hope the stories inspire you to switch careers. I have done all kinds of interesting things in my life and I'm.


A firm believer if.


You all live once, sit back and enjoy.


We are switch into.


Eric Tech Resources to accelerate your career in Information technology, monthly classes on tech topics we offer free or discounted exam vouchers, scholarships for you to meet courses, free events, free boot camps, and more. You can find us at www.switchintotech.


Dot org.


Hey y'all, this is Elyse Robinson with the nobody wants to work through podcasts and today we have Sean with you and he's going to talk about entrepreneurship and his his career switch into it. Go ahead and give us an introduction.


Yes, my my name is Sean Atkinson. I'm a brand and marketing strategist, which is just another way of saying I can take you from coming up with the business idea that you have and then turning it into how to generate revenue with it.


Uhm, I have been in and around the industry for over 30 years. I got my start pretty much by being around marketing and advertising so I I could get a proper understanding of it and then I just found myself fascinated enough with it so that I decided that.


My career was going to be learning about it and then using what I learned to be an entrepreneur.


What did you want to be when?


You grew up?


I knew I wanted to be an entrepreneur pretty early on. It's it's a little silly because it's one of the things that introduced me to entrepreneurship was the game monopoly. I just remember being a kid and I would see things and say I want it and my mother would say you only want it because you see it and.


I would say yes, but I still want it.


And her thing is, but you don't have the money. So when she introduced me to Monopoly and she handed me money, even though it was played.


Like, I felt like a boss and I was like ohh I will never go back to just being someone that has to ask someone for something. So from that point on, like when she introduced me and I was like, OK, well, I can do whatever I want. She was like, yeah, if you have the money, then yes. If you want to go buy candy, you can buy candy. If you want to do this, you can go do this. And I was like, OK, so.


I just need to come up with the money. So the first thing I think the first thing I did like.


I started a candy business and I would buy candy on my way into school and then just slowly unwrap it in the middle of class and you know, so, like, oh, can I have an hour later? Sure. 3 for 25. So by the time I was getting in the lunch, I had already made my money back and it got to the point where I got so efficient with it that my teacher mentioned it to my mother and open school night.


And was like, listen, your kids are here running the business. What? What? What's going on? And my mother got went to get mad at me and said like, well, what are you doing? I was like, well, you told me if I make my money I can spend it whatever way I want.


And it's what I love about my mother. She's pragmatic. I did say that, and she had to go back to the teacher and listen, I'm. I'm sorry I did this. We're going to put some structure around it, and it won't interrupt the class and everything else. And from that point on, I've always known I want to be an entrepreneur. It was.


I'd like the the.


The freedom of being able to generate my own money and do it on my own terms.


That's hilarious, cause I I've known many people that have that same story of starting a little candy business in school, which is hilarious. That wasn't my story. I I'll tell you my story in a minute, but I don't like the fact that at such an early age, you know, they, they stifle that and.


Yeah. No, I didn't. I don't like.


That at all.


But my my story into entrepreneurship, I always wanted to be 1 to I. I've never had this vision of going to work every day and working for someone but.


I I don't know how old I was, I think it was like maybe 13 or 14 or something by that time. Yeah, I had learned how to program. I taught myself how to program when I was like 9 or 10. And over the summer, and my parents thought something was wrong with me because I'm sitting inside the house instead of outside, playing with the rest of the kids.


And I got like 30 cousins so.


I was always outside, but I'm sitting here and teach myself and I'll I'll never forget the website. It's Lisa explains it.


All it still exists.


And funny enough, I had reached out to her during COVID and she finally got back to me and was like, and I told her, you know, you're you're the reason why.


I know how.


To do this stuff. And she's the same age.


As me.


But I started a web hosting company. Don't ask me why I wanted to do that.


That I did, and I had people that was buying from me. Funny enough at like 1314 and I didn't have the money to keep it going because at that point it was super, super expensive. I don't remember where I got the money initially, but.




My father was a janitor. My mother was a clerk. So wasn't that much money coming in the house? They wasn't gonna be able to fund me, so I had to shut it down. And me, you know, being a dumb kid, didn't realize that it was serious and just shut something down like that. And I started getting all this.


Hate mail?


And like for so many years, my name was published on the Internet saying that I just basically shut my business down.


And hilarious cause my mother was like like she's a minor. Like you can't put her name out there like that. You know, it was it was freaking hilarious. And I recall my mother trying to e-mail the person and get my name scrubbed off or whatever, but.


That was like my first my first real business and you know, but I wasn't generating enough to to keep it going. And of course my parents didn't have the money. I could have been GoDaddy.


But listen, you know.




It's really the 1st that makes it.


But yeah, yeah, I I you know, I love reading stories about people that, you know, they've done like 30 businesses and then one finally hits that.


It's just unbelievable to me, but.


Where did your career begin? We kind of talked about it before, but what was your first career? And you know, how did it lead you up to being an entrepreneur?


Well, there's career and then there's the introduction to the career, the the introduction to the career started when my mother got a job at Atlantic Records, which back then was Atco Records. So I remember going into a job and, you know, it's the record industry back in, she's this would have been like.


I am going to tell them my age. This is like end of the 70s, beginning of the 80s. So I remember seeing like people that were stars back then and going to visit her at a job and they were just walking around like regular people. And it was fascinating, me and I was like 6-7 years old and I was like, well, I I don't understand. Like, downstairs you couldn't talk to them, but up here.


You can, like they'll come up and say something to you and and it was like, well, you know, out there, they've got their persona. They've got like we we built a brand for them. There's a perception they have to be able to maintain. And that's when I got my introduction to.


Marketing. My career started when I got a job in the mall doing market research. I was the annoying guy that would come up to someone in the mall and ask them, do you have time for a survey? And I went into it knowing that like.


I don't like bothering people in the street.


Like I've never really been that like I I'm not really the guy that like, even if I sore someone on the street like I I didn't flirt in it. Like I I think there's a place like if you're out in the street, you're going somewhere. You left the house for a reason, I guess is what I'm thinking. So I knew it was going to be a a job that was going to be like annoying. But I wanted my first.


Bar and I just moved to California, and the difference between New York and California is New York. You can get around because you can get on the train. But in California at that point.


The trains and stuff wasn't working, so a car was was necessary, so it was a job where if you couldn't close a certain number of like surveys, you got fired and.


I accepted the challenge I got in and apparently the marketing, research and stuff that I had picked up over the years helped me and being really good at the job. So I learned that it's not just about going and asking the questions, it's knowing when and how to be able to ask the question. So if I just saw someone coming in, I could say, do you have time for a survey?


OK. And they would go? No. Yeah. No, I'm really busy. But after a point, I started noticing, I would see the same people in the mall. So I would say instead of me asking them the first time, I'm gonna catch them another time and an example would be there was 11 girl who was, I'm a taller person. So I understood like I didn't get to shop in the mall. Like when I wanna hang out with my friends, I can get T-shirts.


Like clothes that were gonna fit me. I'm.


6869 so I at that point they didn't have big and tall, so I knew I couldn't shop there and I saw her. And I'm like, you're hanging out with your friends, you're going in the stores. I know they don't carry your size. So I would see the disappointment on her face when she would come out and then eventually, like, I let her do that, like two or three times.


And then when she came out, I I said, you know, do you have time for a survey? And I think.


Because she was already in the mood, she didn't really feel like and I was like, listen, let me let me break it down for you. These brands are asked, asked, like they're asking questions because they want to figure out how to be able to be of more service. I know that when I go in these stores, they don't carry my size. If I'm the only person saying that, I'm never going to see the results that.


I want to be able to get.


I see you going to that store at least three.


Different times with.


Bright eyes and come out sad. I'm imagine you'll run into the same issue I'm running into. They're asking these questions because they need to understand how to be able to be better. So by not answering the questions, you're doing yourself more of a disservice. So I ask you.




Do you have time for a survey?


Once I figured that part out, it was easy to get them to go in and start giving things, giving the information because it's giving them the the the perception of like that your your, your opinion matters. Now the business side of it is you can't take all of the opinions. Sometimes people that make suggestions and things that you want, but you can't go with all them because it doesn't align with your business.


Model, but it does mean that you can't do something with that information. So I say this to say we're in a point where in a point of of business where intellectual property means a lot, so now you're seeing more people owning their information. So now more people are on their own websites and things like that.


It's important because that data matters, like if you can get that information, that information is going to help you drive your business. If you're putting it where other people on that information, then you don't. They're giving you access to what they want you to have, but they're using it too. So it's not just thinking about the business idea, it's thinking about the business that goes along with it and how are you going to feed into the business to make sure you always eat.


He said a lot of him and we were laughing because I'm tall. I'm 511, so I fully understand. I I'll never go in the mall either, so I I I used to go to the mall just to find bullies, of course. But I would never stop. Thank God for the Internet.


Because I never forget there was a store called alloy. I believe it still exists. I haven't been on there in a couple of years or so, but they sold tall. They went. I think they started off at like 34 inch inseam and I think they have 40 now.




And so that's where I would get all my clothes. So I never had name brand or anything like that, you know? And it's funny. Once I moved to Mexico, you know, all I wore was was dresses because, you know, first of all was hot. But I'm like, you know, I could. I finally have something that that fits and it looks OK.


But that's, that's funny. These are. That's how you got her. But yeah, I mean language. And you know, the way you pitch something to somebody matters and and you know that being a marketing person.


But outside of that.


You said owning your data and I don't know. I mean I'm I'm a millennial, so I've grown up with and without computers. And since I'm in tech, you know, to an extent, I've seen it, you know, go from where it was to what it is now.


And I think when I was a teenager until my 20s in early 20s, you could own your day.


Yeah, but I don't think you own your data as much as now, because when I used to program back in the day, you know, people had these scripts that you would install on, on everything and that's how you would get your data and whatever else. But now we have things called software as a service.


And of course, Microsoft, Google, whatever, and you just install that on there and they have your data as well as you so.


You know, to an extent, yeah, you have your data, but then you don't. Then outside of that, I mean, someone can literally just wipe you off because you don't. You don't host it anymore. Someone else runs that hosting and things like that not to throw Trump out there. But I mean.


They literally knocked him off of one of the biggest platforms you know ever. And you know, he built his own and I think he's trying to go public with it.


Or something right now, but.


You know, stuff like that happens nowadays. So is that a good thing or a bad thing? You know, because I think you know that Dang, I'm showing my age. But yeah, 20 years ago.


You could control your data, you know it's.


The longer you're around, the more you realize these things are cycles and.




It's it's, it's it. It almost comes from a place of arrogance sometimes where I'll talk to someone and well, I have a level of certainty. And I've seen certain things before and I've seen how some of these things played out and even though it's a different situation, human nature is still kind of the same. And there's a point where things where people get a certain level of freedom.


And then they go, oh, that was too much. And then they start saying we need to put some regulations in, and there's an ebb and.


Flow to it so.


When it comes to things like.


Like being on different platforms like one of the things I think that was so powerful was during COVID, it changed the the landscape of things. I think what we're looking at now is different, where when I'm saying intellectual property, I'm talking more about your content and I think what we're also seeing is another low key.


Shift where people went from owning their content to now we're looking at AI, where now AI is advising people so much that a lot of the content that's coming out isn't their own. So if anyone ever got to the point where.


They said you.


Know what we read that article in 75% of us of of that is.


Plus, we want our 75% back.


How many of them are going to have articles where it's actually them talking about what they know versus them? Just saying, you know, I'm just going to put something out there so that I have something. So it it, that's what I'm talking about, kind of owning it, it's more is it your information or is it just you taking information that's out there? And then just kind of structuring it in a way that it fits into what you're doing.


But in general, you're absolutely right. I think the way to be able to own it is you have to invest more in it. So when it's as like a small business owner, minority owned business owners.


When you don't have the budget, yeah, go to Google Analytics and go look at the analytics over there because it's free and then figure out what it is that you need to know. And then the more you start to figure out what you need to know, the more you know what to look for. And then as you know what to look for. Yeah. If somebody's offering you something where you can.


Get it? And you don't have to pay for it? Absolutely.


But the more you want to be able to own it, the more it has to be your content and you have something that that you actually own. So to tie it back to.


Move it. These were user generated platforms like social media. Is user generated platforms and I it used to drive me crazy where people like Oh well, we're not making enough money. If you start putting something up there, they don't have anything, they need you. It's in the name user generated content. So they COVID came and people were just in the house.


And they need and and they needed an.


Outlet you saw a TikTok take off, YouTube took off all the content creators, it restructured everything because they had to start giving them something to be able to keep people on those platforms. They saw an opportunity as a business to say people at home. We've got people's attention. People took off and started studying new languages, new careers.


It opened their eyes to be able to do more because they actually had to sit still for a minute and then it gave them time to think about all the other things they.


To do this was a golden opportunity for those type of platforms to be able to take advantage. But in order to maintain getting the best people, they had to change their Rev share. So all of a sudden the the, the control or more of the power has shifted back over to the content creators as opposed to when they were just put things up and they didn't know how much money they were going.


To make and things like that so.


They opened the door for more content creators and things like that to come in and I think that part was great. I think on the slide what we're looking at is they've made.


They've made it easier for people to be able to do it, but in doing so it gives them a certain level of control back because if you have so many people doing it, then if one person falls off, you feel like you can replace it with another one. So I see the business side of it and then I see the entrepreneurial side of it. So that's where I enjoy it because.


I go like I learned the business side so that I could use the entrepreneurial.


Side like I know when I see a hustle from the business side of oh, that's corporate putting their hands back in it. AI is corporate, putting their hands back in it. It's basically going if we allowed you to just go with your content and put your stuff out, we don't have that same level of control. But if we can kind of put.


Make it easier for you. It's it's like it's almost like these website themes, like they've got things where now it's even easier to create a website that creates more people.


It adds more competition. It means that everyone that is a gatekeeper, that you have to pay to get in. So like, if you have to get your LLC and certain things that you have to do like in New York, it's expensive. I realize I've talked to people in other places and I'm like, oh, I only had to pay this. And I'm like, oh, my goodness, they they're gonna get you make like we you we're going to get you now but you'll charge.


More in New York because we've charged you on the way in. So in order to make your money back, you're gonna have to charge a certain amount. And that kind of goes back to what we were talking about before, where, you know it's it is a business. And if you're not comfortable with the business part of the business.


Then you have to really think about what role you're going to play in it. Like. I grew up in the music industry, but what I couldn't stand was the business side of the music business. So I had to leave that to get over to advertising, entertainment and other industries because like, I grew up on music like I loved it so much that to see the business side of it.


And see great artists that never got to come out and things like that. It's just it's it's criminal to me. So like knowing the business side of things, you have to know that so that you can learn how to be able to maintain.


Who you are in it? Because otherwise they'll they'll have you fold into who they are. So when again when I kind of say intellectual property, I'm talking more about you being who you are as opposed to trying to fitting into who they are and the construct that they create for you. Entrepreneurship is meant to be freedom and it's important for you to hold on to that.


In the ways that you can.


And you said so much and you talked about uh, you know, user generated content and kind of so much stealing content from other people. I created a business during COVID because the other business that I had literally closed up overnight because I couldn't go out, I I really was pounding the pavement.


I can hear Spanish very well face to face, but over the phone I suck at it, so I would get my clients face to face and plus me being a black woman, you know, they're like, you know, I'm I'm a novelty. So you know, that helped in a way too. So I would go out and get.


My customers that way, but the.


Other business that I started during COVID.


Was I don't know how you want to describe it, but it it was like an aggregator of information. That's basically what it was. And so I would take the information that I had and I created a business around it and I charged a yearly fee.


Because I wasn't doing monthly, I went all my.


I know.


Ohh that's that's so that's that is a whole other conversation. I appreciate where you went with it without even saying a word. Yes, yes.


No, I charge yearly and charged all my money up front and it's crazy because.


The way I marketed it was myself. I was like ohh, I got this. I'm getting this. I'm getting that people are like, well, how are you getting all these things? And I'm like, I just, I just researched it and that's how I got it. And so.


I literally created a website and I got my my first customer the first day that I launched and I didn't really charge anything. Not as much as I could have charged, but I wanted testimonials and I made them give me testimonials.


But yeah, that's funny that you say that because I mean, I literally just stole information from a whole bunch of different places and put it together to where people where it's easier for.


People to get.


And that's a whole business in itself and that could be pretty much anything because people don't want to research.


Yeah, yeah. He's ease of access market research is I will ask the questions so that you don't have to.


It's it's basically what it is like I I would define branding as.


Doing the research to find out who your audience is, what it is they they want, need what they prioritize. Building a business around a business model around it, and then marketing is taking everything that you learned about the audience and then going back and say, here's what we learned. Am I right? And the more they say that you're right, the more you know that you got the audience that you want.


And then the next step is to start to try to, you know, move them through that customer journey of the No life trust or, you know, all the different ways that they describe it. But it really comes down to people buy from people that they know people buy from, people that they feel some kind of connection with. It's.


95% of purchase decisions are based on emotional decisions or emotional connections, so if they don't feel like they know you, if they don't feel like they trust you, they're not going to do it and it's it's increasing the risk because they don't feel like they trust you. So I love the intellectual property, I think.


That's what I'm saying. There's room for everyone because there are some people that know that and go, you know, I know you don't want to do that, so I'm going to take the thing that you don't want to do because it doesn't bother me and I'm going to package that up in a way and provide you ease of use.


That's a business.


And and it's it's a smart business because if you know how to be able to pull that stuff from different places, I I'll have conversations with people and they'll be talking about something. And I'm like, oh, yeah, check your inbox. And I'm like, well, what would you send me? And it's like a little gift. And when they open it, it's like, yeah, that was what you were talking about, right. Like, I was talking to someone yesterday, and she was saying.


Oh well, you know I'm she's a copywriter and she's saying, well, what I want to do is I'm going to do my my onboarding and then I'm I want to like, I'm running into issues being able to get the questions answered. And I was like, well.


You're part of a program where the woman she set up things where, like you, you can send the questionnaire and by the time they are supposed to like, she doesn't have the call unless you fill out the questionnaire because I at least need to have the base information so that I know what to ask you when we're on the call. But if I'm starting from scratch, when we get on the call, then that's not a good use of your time or my time.


And it makes it even harder for us to get that call scheduled or for things to move forward. So when you're talking about information gathering, any time that you can add ease of use, you allow more people to get to participate because initially it's only going to be the people that want to do the research.


Which which is that's the entry fee, and that's what we're looking at when we see these. These like, more and more entrepreneurs, I want to say there's over 600,000 that start a business every year. We're seeing those numbers go up because there's more ease of use before people go, Oh my God, I have to figure out a website now. You can pretty much go on there. And they got a website where all you have to do is.


Just swap out some pictures so.


The entry fee is different, so it allows more people to get in, but the trick to that is it allows more people to get in, but it also allows them to be able to move some of the people that.


One out.


So it's you have to go in and This is why I stress the business model love. If you go in and you're being yourself, then you stand a better chance of making it. But if you're going in and you're repeating what somebody else did, it's diluted more and when they start saying it's it's a different in marketing like I have a, a, a course in the presentation where I talk about.


Where to place yourself in? Like the business journey? If you're a new business?


This then you're focusing more on walking alongside the person. If you've been around for a little while, then you're talking more about what you're doing in the present. If you're an existing business that's been around for a while, you can talk about how long you've been doing it and what made you great for so long that you've been able to have customers continue to come back.


And things like that.


The marketing pitch is going to be completely different depending on where you're at business journey wise. So it's understanding those things. But yeah, I'd love the information gathering. I just think it's it's like with anything and and this is where it goes back to being around for a.


This time there are people that like I know that this is a whole business, but there are people that would buy domains and they were just like oh, this looks.


Like something, somebody.


Would want it for $5 and then they sold it for $5000. And when you've got that business idea and you're all excited about it and then you say, oh, I got to get a domain and.


You realize the one that you want is is.


Is just parked somewhere and that person was just like, yeah, I anticipated your need. And now I'm going to hit you with a markup that's just business. And I can't be mad at him for anticipating something. I just have to know either I'm going to have to work around it or I'm going to have to go through that to be able to get to what I want. So.


Entrepreneurship. It'll it'll take everything you got, but it'll give you.


Everything you want.


It's funny about the domain name because I have my my name as my domain name and I must have waited.


Like maybe five years for that domain name to come available and I checked one day and it was expired and I'm like ohh God like she didn't renew the domain name and.


I've had it.




For probably about.


15 years now.


But yeah, like it's it's it's really crazyihavethe.com, the.net and the.org.


Break that down to me. She was like, if you don't own your name. What?


Are you doing?


At the very least, own your name because it's, I mean, it's the story is old. It's time. Like, there's all these adventures that had these great ideas, but because they didn't do the paperwork, somebody was able to come in and just ****** it out from under.


So understanding the business side of the business is necessary for you to be able to still be yourself and be everything that you want to be able to be. But if you don't look at the business side of the business, it's a blind spot and people that know how to navigate it will will cut you off from the knees and that's how people end up getting jaded and going well. I had to go through it so everybody should go through it.


But if if somebody can put you on to some of it going in so that you don't have to go through that, then it kind of opens the door to keep that going.


And and it makes it easier. So that kind of goes back to the everybody eats thing. If if you if I helped you avoid those struggles then my requirement for that is that you help the next person do it like somebody has to start with the sacrifice and that's why I don't charge the things that I could charge. But like I still know it's a business so like I'll have people that will call me and say oh.


Can you do a website for $50?




You do it for 200. No. Like I at all the time like I had one person. What? What will happen sometimes is people will get the idea. They'll get inspired and then they start running around calling people to see, like, how to be able to make it work. And eventually, sometimes I'll be the one of the people that they'll call and they'll say, OK, here's the thing.


I'm going to give you some information because I don't want you to repeat what you just told me to anybody else, because if it's, if you call the right person and you tell them that they're going to take you for every last sentence you have. So here's the things that you need to know. Here's some of the questions that you should be asking. You're not a good fit for my business, but here's the things that you should be asking.


So that when you do get on the phone with somebody, you know what to ask, so you can tell if this is somebody that's trying to take you for your money, or if this is someone genuinely trying to help you. Like those little things, make a big difference because people remember that later and it's those little acts of kindness that turn.


The business side of business into it being a little more human again for for some people there are some people that just wire it different. That thing is I got into for the money and I'm going to make sure I get the money so.


It it it really just depends on the person.


Set out to Elyse Robinson I have. I have the domain name. I believe she was interior designer.


Hey I I I love it.


I remember was like.


Uh-huh. I love it. You slipped up. That's when the business side of business comes in. Like I. Yeah.


I'm. I'm over here making it seem like I'm all magnanimous, but like, there was a time I had a.


A A business where I would buy laptops that were that were at one level and then I would buy them, upgrade them and then resell them. And Oh my God, yeah. I'm I'm I'm very competitive like I'm over here making it sound like I'm I I am a nice guy but I'm also about my business so like let me not pretend like I'm.


I'm just. I'm like, I'm all. It's all flowers and candy. I I it. It is. I'm. I'm a good guy. I'm not a nice guy. Let me. Let me be clear. Like Nice guys will will have somebody run over you. You can't be an entrepreneur for a certain amount of time and not switch from the Nice to the good cause if you're too.


Nice people will see it and they'll they'll end up trying to take advantage of you so you can be a good person, but you can't be a pushover. So like when I mentioned the computers? Yeah, I used to love beating people. I'd wait till the last minute and just put my bid in and ****** it right from under their hands and have this vision in my head. And I'm sitting over there crying and.


I would chuckle to myself.


So yeah, it's it's it. It is a cultural part to it. It is a cultural part to it. It it you know.


In order for there to be a winner, there has to be a.






You just have to know how to do something with that loss.


They're definitely not. I don't. I don't want to be cutthroat. I don't. But people will play you. They will play you all to the to, to the end. And me and my my sibling. We have to talk about it all the time. Like why I gotta be like that, like I just was trying to do this and they they went that way.


Here. So you know, that's what I mean by you know.


Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.




There are. There are no feelings in business that that's my statement with with business there's no feelings. Because when you have feelings, what do they what? What happens when you got feelings? They get hurt.


Many people are going to play on your feelings. Like if you leave an opening somebody that's looking for one is going to see that and go, oh, that could be it.


Now, whether they're capable of using that as a blind spot or not kind of depends on the person. But yeah, yeah. I mean, I've had people that were up under me that I thought were really, really good people, and I mean, they are, but they're about their business and I go about my business in a different way. Like, I'm not going to take somebody's money if I don't think I can deliver.


There are people that I know that will take people's money because they had bills to pay and it was on that person to follow through and make sure that they were supposed to get out of everything that they could out of that investment. So I think they're just people that go about doing their business a little bit differently. I I'm not mad at them because, you know, we all got bills like.


Why? If just because I'm OK with a peanut butter and Jelly sandwich, somebody might go. You know what? I I'm. I'm not.


I'm gonna be mad at you. That's. That was my choice. That wasn't. I'm not going to force my choice on somebody else.


And and again like I I tell people like listen, you know, if you're going in an entrepreneur check with the people around you, make sure that they're OK with the struggle that you're about to put all of them through. Cause it's not just going to be you. And these things make a difference when you have the conversation with somebody that's going into business where some of these other ones are going to take your money and go here's the best practices. Here's the things that you need to know.


And then I'll tell you about that part. Like, man, you're about to lose your girl. Your girl look like she's somebody that, that that likes certain things. She like going out to eat. She likes certain things.


If you get ready to cut your Chuck off so that you can go start being an entrepreneur, yes, she's supportive right now. Are you sure that you have a business plan that you're gonna be able to do that within an allotted amount of time before she loses patience in you because you got somebody that because you like them, that doesn't mean that nobody else likes them and anybody can be you long enough to be able to get them away from you?


So you need to think about these things. So when I'm having these conversations, I'm having real business conversations.


Of this is what it could cost you, but this is what you can gain.


Are you in it? Because if you're in it, this is the entrepreneurial mindset. If you're not in it 100%, here's some of the other ways that you can do it. Like, don't jump with both feet, keep your job, and then get your side job.


And ease your way into it to make sure that you can match your check before you do that, because that is being courteous of the people around you so that they don't have to suffer then. That way the only person that really suffers is you. You got to give up more of your time when you get off from work, then you start your real job, which is you trying to start the job. That will take care of everything else.


Like going back to the people around you and saying, you know what? I could do it this way, but I realize that's not going to be fair to you. So I'm going to do it this way. That's where you get the actual support like, oh, so you thought I was going to sit on the hook and not do this and not do that. Oh, no, no, no, no. But you say the other way to not inconvenience.


Me and still do what you're doing. I can support that.


So you know it's it's just you have to be realistic about, like entrepreneurship. You have to know what you're getting into. And a lot of times people know that they have a good business idea, but they don't have.


A business model.


Or a business plan. And because they don't take this time to do that like some people get a business idea and go create the website and then think they going to figure it out later.


Once you're out there, you're out there. And like you said, where you shut down the business. Now your reputation's out there. So then if you want to start a business again, then you have to kind of undo the perception in order to be able to get that back out there now.


Hopefully your mom said her right. Like she's a child. Like she didn't know you can't hold that against her. But like as an adult.


I am of the mentality of if you took my money then you knew what you were doing.


So if I if I'm asking the right questions and you take my money anyway and and you do me dirty.


Again, I'm a I'm a I'm a good guy. I'm not a nice guy. I it's. It's about business at that point. Like you don't know what I had to do to get that money. And you took that money like my I I go into the business of realizing I don't know what you have to do to make that money. Like for some people earning a dollar is harder than other people. So for me I put that dollar the value of the dollar on the person that worked hard for it.


Now for the ones that it comes easier for. Yeah, you can charge some more, but for the ones that like, if you choose an audience that's a small business or a minority owned business and things like that, their budget is different because.


They can't just be playing in their savings like that, so it's like you got to know that when you getting into it. I take it a a certain level of fence when I see people lock in on that audience and they don't take into consideration like you don't know what they had to do to earn that money, like that's that's not cool. So like when I got into it, I got into it with that understanding.


And that's why you'll hear me say I'm in it for the business and you know, like, I'd love seeing the results. But I also have to let them know going into it like I'm, I'm still about my business. I I literally had a a woman tell me once she was like, oh, you don't love your people.




Like Ohh I have this whole great idea but like you wanna charge me this, this and this. And I'm like darling like it's it's.


A business like.


And and you're not the first. Like, I had to sign an NDA and all of us there, so I can't get into. But it was it wasn't the first time I've heard that idea. I'm doing my own version of it, of we're going to help our people going to lift everybody up. We're going to do it. That costs money. And if that's what you're going in there to do, then you need to understand it's going to cost money and it's going to cost you everything you got. But at the other end of it, if it's done well.


You'll get a. You'll get opened up to a whole new world. You'll be in rooms that you were never in before, and the reward is worth it. But you got to be willing to do the work.


You know, you said so much and so many things are running through my.


Head and I guess.


This is one reason why I'll probably never be a coach.


I I just think remember I I don't know. Maybe it's different when you're writing than than talking. But I was part of this this move abroad group and it was it was supposed to be nothing but black people in it, right?


And there was a lady. She was. She had, like, a three-year old. And then she had, like, a fresh one, like, like, fresh off the.




And so you see why I don't wanna be a coach?


I'm sorry that I I feel like we've known each other. That's something people around that I spent time with was saying that just cracked me up. I'm sorry. We we can get back to it if I just had a real.


Honest reaction, I'm sorry.


Press out and slow.


And she didn't say nothing about, you know, having a man. Not as if you need one. But, you know another person moving abroad could be nice, right? When you have two kids. So she was like, yeah, I got my my refund check and stuff. And I think I want to move abroad.


And stuff. And I was like, no, ma'am, I mean.


There is no welfare in these other countries, especially if you're not a permanent resident or a citizen. You know, assuming that they have welfare. So if you decide that you can't pay your rent or your light bill, or you need a little snacky snack, I mean, there's there's nothing there.


I am and I said.


You know, I think you need to reevaluate your plan before you just jump in there because you getting your little refund check and you not having a plan after that, you know.


I don't know if you think you're gonna go three months and come back and then be in the same predicament or what. So, you know, in a lot of these countries, there's no jobs, so.


There's no there's technically no jobs here, but there's a place where it's built around capitalism and go someplace else. So yes.


Right, right. Right, right. So.


So, you know, and she got so upset like she cussed me all the way out. And so, you know, people jumped in my inbox because they're cowards. So I don't do the cowardly thing either. And, you know, were telling me that I was right and like, she should have went off on me.


So yeah, you know, things like that. And you know, I guess my thing is how do you handle that? I mean, you kind of talked about it with the lady, but you know, do you just basically brush them off or or, you know, how do you handle those type of situations where you, you know you right? But they ain't trying to hear it.


Uh, I mean.


You know what? I'll give you 2 examples. I'll give you one of me being hard headed and being told some things that I was supposed to be listening to and how not listening to it in that moment ended up costing me more time than it it was supposed to. Because when I started my business, because of all of the marketing experience and stuff that I had, I was like, oh, I'm going to be.


Like an agency of record.


Which is basically I will take care of all your marketing, advertising and branding. I will make sure that you have everything you need because that's what I did on the large.


Level when you do that for a smaller business, they don't know what it is that you're doing. All they know is that you're charging them a certain amount of money. So when I started my business, I started with a with at least a few a a few clients and it was like, OK with them. I know I'll be able to cover these bills and these expenses. So I need to stay.


In the black.


Like I need to make sure that I'm good on that, but when the pandemic hit then it was like Oh well, you know, I gotta start rethinking what I'm doing and a da, da, da, da and it's.




I'm the wrong one to cut corners with because I'm I'm doing a whole lot and if I charge you what I was supposed to be charging you.


You couldn't afford me, but now you're coming back to me and you're saying like ohh well, you know, I gotta start cutting corners and you know, it's not like you're doing that much. And my thing is, you know what?


You put your hands up.


A I have a a saying that I joke with with my friend about because again like for years we've we've been in the consulting world, so we know like there's going to be good days and bad days. My thing is you know the the most reliable thing in the world, the floor.


The floor is always waiting for you. It's always ready for.


You you need.


Rock bottom, sometimes rock bottom is the only thing that gets people up. If you need me to get out of ways for you to be able to see that like I actually knew what I was talking about and you want to rush to get out to everybody else that's telling you something else. That's why I bake it into my business that.


By the time we finish every single stage, you have the right to be able to go.


Like I will give you what you need to go out there. But like if you if you're just the grass is always greener, you're always going to be getting a different impression from somebody else instead of finding out your own. So like if you're constantly chasing the voice and you're not listening to your own, you're always going to be mimicking with somebody else does. So when I say that I customize my services.


I customized my services to them like I got my best practices and insights and things like that, but.


I do an assessment similar to like you doing audits. I do an assessment like tell me what your idea is, what got you into it like there are basically four reasons people normally start a business. They had a good experience that they want other people to have. They've had a bad experience that they want people to avoid. They don't have first hand experience in it.


But they do have the solution and then there are some people that like to be business owners in name only and then the extra 1 is the ones where they are.


Serial entrepreneurs, where they have the ideas and they can't do anything with them, but they just need to get them out there so they get them out of their head and they can actually see it turn into something. I've done all of those.


So I have an appreciation for like the people that are different stages. So when somebody does something like that and they're like, oh, well, you know.


It's it's. It's like the the the, the woman that said, oh, well, you don't love your people, don't I? By being honest with you.


That's how I'm helping you.


Because what I'm trying to explain to you is.


I'm taking the time to explain this to you. These other people that you want to go out to, they're going to look to see how far down the path you are and if you're still at the early stages, they're not going to donate their time or their resources because once they take that on, they're responsible for your wins and your failure. And that's why I kind of go back to, I'm not going to take somebody's money if I don't feel like I can deliver because.


You're putting your hopes on me. I don't know what you had to do to earn that money. So if I'm being honest with you and I'm saying that you're not a good.




It's because I'm not going to take your money and put you in a worse position than when I found you. I I more of the belief that leave them better than you found them. So with that, that's how I deal with that specifically. Leave them better than you found them. Like, if if you start off and they went a certain place. If I'm educating you throughout the process you at least know what you don't like. So now you can go out and find what you do like.


I may not be a good fit. I I joke with people. I I think I I came to this when I.


Was like a teenager. I'm.


I'm I'm an acquired taste, not a required taste like I'm not meant for everybody. If I if I was meant to please everybody, then I would be nobody like there would be no me in it. It would be me being what everybody else wanted. Like it's.


You got it. You, you you have to kind of block some of that out because they they mean well, but they don't, they don't know well like, you know, when the guy told me you have to, you have to niche niche down like he's like you're he's like Oh my God like I was on a live call as a bunch of people he was.




I can't stand those one stop shops and I'm sitting there hanging my hat on it. I was feeling good like, but I can do all of those things. But he was like, but when you're good when you're saying that you could do everything that it means you're not good at one thing.


So start with the one thing that you know that you're good at, that you can do on an off day, and sure that you're good enough at that so that you know that you have that and then you build on that as you go. So it's if someone comes in and they're trying to do something where like in this situation, she wanted to be able to leave and go someplace else, it's like, listen, I could help you do that. But then I personally, because of who I am as a person with your responsible for you.


And I want to be honest, I don't want that response.




And I'm sure somebody else will take your money and send you out there. And when things go wrong, you know who you're remembering that the one person that was being honest with you and saying I don't want to put you in that position because it's not going to end well.


And what happens is if if if they get enough time and they actually are in a position, those are the people that come back and when they come back, they're not coming at you the same way. They're coming back from a from a a level of humility of, oh, my God, they ragged all me out there. You know what I mean? Like it. I was a chew toy. They just tore me up. And now I'm coming back going.


You were right. So when the guy told me to niche down like I ended up going to one of his conventions.


Out in Cabo and.


I think he saw it because it's it's an exclusive thing now. A lot of people get in and I didn't think I was ready, but I think what made him say I was ready was I stepped away from thinking that I knew it all because even though I knew what I was talking about, I didn't understand the business side of it. He was saying he's down because this thing is in order for you to generate the money that you need to so that you can do all of those things.


You have to start making money.


So this is part of the conversation I have with people now where it's like, listen, I know you want to make you want to, you know, you're talking about. I want to make six figures. I'm going to help you get to your first 50 customers and then once you get your first fifty and you're starting to get those those testimonials, the reviews, depending on the business, you might need customer success stories. Don't make your business.


You trying to tell people why they should invest in you when you can have the customers do that work for you by delivering good results. If you focus on delivering the.


Results then people are perfectly happy to be able to say I spent my money and it and and it went well for me. People love to brag on themselves. You don't have to worry about that. Look online people brag on themselves all day on social media.


Trying to avoid put you in a position where you're gonna make yourself look bad.


If you if you don't want to, that's OK. I'm not going to take offense to it, but I I am also petty enough where I will let somebody know I'm. And I told you so kind of person so.


This this is what made make me a good business person. I mean a good fit for your business or a bad person for your business. If you're not the type of person that wants to hear that, then I might not be the person for you because yeah, if we're doing something and and and I'm like, you should go with this strategy and you don't.


It's OK. I'll help you get out of it when you when you're in that situation. But I will remind you that like I tried to tell you, this was going to happen. So in some cases, you know, you you have to kind of prognosticate. You have to say.


Here's some horror stories. Here's some you know, people that were in this position that made the choice that you're about to make did this, and this is how it ended. Now, if you warn someone and you give them that story and they do it anyway, then you've kind of unburdening yourself or feeling responsible for them because you warned them you didn't take their money, you didn't do them.


Pretty and it still allowed you to hold on the integrity and then allow them to go out there and realize it's a business.


If you find somebody that cares enough to be able to answer your questions and tell you all of that, that's probably the person that you should. You should work with because they're going to walk alongside you on your journey as opposed to giving you just enough and then sending you out on your way.


I wanted to ask this question and then I guess we can we can kind of wrap it up, but do you think?


Image the way someone looks.


The huge role of business, you know, there's a difference between having long hair, short hair, you know, skinny and fat, you know, tall and short, a beard, no beard. Yeah. No. How much do you think that plays a role?


And I mean making money because, I mean, you're in marketing. You're in branding.


A great question. The honest answer is it 100% matters.


I'm not gonna. I'm not gonna lie to somebody, but as someone that that works in positioning, which is basically just another way of saying I'm telling you where to stand, what to wear and how to stand. You know how to be in a position when someone's making a decision to put yourself in a position where you're an option. Like, I can't promise that you're going to be the only option, but I can put.


You in a position to be the option.


If you're someone that like I, one of the things that I look at are like introverts.


Like they don't want they. They know that they want to have the business, but they're it's not in their personality to be out there and be the salesperson. Like I can be both. But like in the reality I'm a I'm a home, but I don't want to be bothering.


People we started with.


I don't want to be talking to people on the street and interrupting them during that day, but I had to get my.


Car. So I'm gonna do what I got to do.


It's something where you have to look at. This is where the business assessment comes in and and I'll I'll, I'll try to narrow this down. So it's not long winded. You have to play to your strengths and you have to tell your story in a way where there's an audience for everyone. Everyone's got their story. Like if you look at some of these.


Some of the marketing now they're marketing for, for plus size women, they're marketing for for taller people where there's things that are out there specifically talking to that audience. If, if, if you do the research and you find out who your audience is, then you get to be your authentic self to that audience. But if you don't and you're just trying to talk to everyone.


Then you're gonna be got. You're gonna be judged based on the narrative that they create for you versus the narrative that you can create for yourself. So in a way, you have to be a storyteller if you know that you're someone that.


This image issues like if if it's someone where they're overweight, leverage that.


Be human about it, to the point where there's other people are going to have that same insecurity and they like you know what? I could go over there with that little, you know, the one that's all in shape and all the rest of that. But I'll be secretly over there hating them watch and not just work with somebody that feels the same way I feel. So we can take that journey together. Like, that's more of an enjoyable experience as opposed to going with someone that feels like they've already figured everything out.


You're the more you figured it out, and the more you're further away from it, you may not understand the struggle the same way. It's like when you know you, you think about it it we can use music, we can use anything sports like there are.


People that you know, you may start off a certain level of hungry, but like when the next generation comes around, they're like you don't know what it was like to struggle like that. I made sure you didn't have to. So it's how do you explain something to the person that didn't have that experience the same way versus someone that's in it at the same time? So when you're like, oh, you don't understand what the stress is like if they're.


That far removed from it. No, they don't.


But if they're in the mix with you and they're taking out a path with you, then it's something where you feel more comfortable being free and you can actually benefit from the things that other people would think would would hold you back.


So be your authentic self and you actually get rewarded for that these days as opposed to you have to put the persona on the way that you used to. Like when I'm talking about back in the music industry days now you see more people being more themselves as opposed to the brand that they created.




Them. I'll give you one last example. Look at Papa John's.


That guy was the face of their franchise.


And then he said something that people didn't like, which I don't exactly remember what it was, but I remember seeing that and going well. Yeah, that's not going to be good. And then they they were just, you know, they were in. They were in a spot because they were like, we built everything around that person, if I'm honest, one of the reasons one of the other reasons I didn't want to be stay in the music industry is because you're branding a person, people.


Talk people do things so like when people say, you know, would you rather a brand or would you rather focus on the business? I'm saying you can do both, but if you hang your hat on the brand, then you have to stick to.


That so like, think about a singer that does an album and after a certain amount of time the longer they are round when you go to the concerts, they sticking the mic out to the audience to sing. They're tired of singing that.


Song they've been.


Singing that song forever, like you know, they may have loved it when they did it. But the feelings that they had when they created it is are not the same now because they're not the same person.


So like you have to take those things into consideration. But when you're your authentic self.


We see what the pushback is. You know, there are some artists that put stuff out and then all of a sudden they want to do something different and the audience is like, whoa, whoa. We like that person who told you could be this person. That's what the market research and stuff comes in. Like, you can't make drastic changes without expecting to lose some of the people that you had in your life. Then it's the same with going into entrepreneurship if they're used to you being an employee.


And all of a sudden you you switch over to be an.




It's going to be a different people that you have around you, some people are going to switch over, some people going to go. I preferred you this way and you have to outgrow those things to be able to do that. So when it comes to brand, it absolutely matters. But if you control the narrative, then you control the perception. So get out in front of it from the beginning.


So that you don't allow other people to tell your story, you tell your story, and when you tell your story, nobody can tell you how you can tell your story. It's your experiences. So that goes back to if you had a great experience, then you're sharing it with people to make sure they enjoy it. If you had a bad experience, you're helping people avoid, then that's your story.


If you never had that first hand experience, would you just have the solution? Be honest about it. If you're just in it for the money and and like, well, I'm going to, I'm going to start this and then I'm going to go ahead and hand this off. Think about some of the, the the like the black hair care products, how people got so caught up in them and then ended up selling out to the bigger brand and the bigger brand and ended up just kind of turning it into something where it ended up fading away.


Because they were competition and they were taking money off the table.


And people invested in that business because they felt like they cared about them. If you know, you're going into the business to sell it, be honest about that. Don't make your marketing around getting people that care that way. Just focus on the results that you give. So when you tell your story, think about the story that you're telling, and that allows you the narrative, and it allows you to tell your story in a way that.


Nobody can really mess with that. There's competitors. They can say, oh, well, this person does this, they they can do that 95% of all purchase decisions are based on emotional connections. It doesn't matter what you look like.


That's an initial thing. Most people like people when they first meet them, and then as they get to know them, sometimes you realize you don't like the person the same way. But if you're your authentic person, authentic self from the start and not that representative, you know, think about some of the people that will buy and then once you once you get that sale, all of a sudden they stop caring about you the same way.


That's the same thing. Be your authentic, healthy wild and that's how you get brand loyalty and you get people that stay around. But if you're just doing it just to be able to get the sales people notice and then they eventually navigate towards the people that they feel like they have a real connection with. So you can get a sale once. But if you're trying to get a sale 100 times from the same.


Listen, you better off being your authentic self. It doesn't matter what you look like. Any of the rest of that, the perception goes from being aesthetics to how you make them feel before and after the purchase. So if you have a business where you plan to have repeat business, you better off being yourself than being what you think they want you to be.


Yeah, that I that I can agree with. You know, I I asked that only because you know that's that's a big thing in in marketing it's it's how you look and how you talk and whatever else.


And there was, I guess, a case. It was all over Twitter, I guess. Black Twitter and, you know, I'm looking at the dude. And I'm like, what would make you, you know, trust this guy with your money? Like, he looked like he was 5.


To his, his clothes didn't fit him.


And you know, his hairline was jacked up. And I'm just like, y'all gave this man all his money. Y'all crazy. But I'm like his mouthpiece must have been nice because, I mean, looking at him ain't no money I would have gave him the hell of money. You know what I'm saying? So I want his mouthpiece.


He told the story he told the story it's sometimes it's not. It's not. It's not the the contents, it's the, it's the wrapping.


Because, you know, people will buy the wrapping and that's why there's so much buyers remorse like there's 95% of people that base things on emotional connections, 74% end up having buyers remorse.




74% that's that's 3/4 of the people that made that kind of decision went you know what? If I had thought about it, I wouldn't have done that.


That's why they say hindsight is 2020. So like once you get past that, that's what I'm saying. There's a difference between selling something once and then selling something multiple times. You can fool somebody once you can't continue to fool the person again. So if you're the type of business that like, you know that you're going into it with the intentions of getting over, you can sell it once, but you're not going to be in business for a long period of time. That's all. Like, there are some people.


That get in business, make their money and then out.


You can do that with that, but if you.


Plan on being.




For a while, your reputation is is what what gets you the money. There are a lot of small business owners that they don't advertise. They get their business because they get results and then that person went and told somebody else, went told somebody else and then that's how that works. So I I laugh when I I talk to people in the 1st and they start talking about this. I got to do paid advertising.


So who? You don't even know who your audience is yet. You're guessing who they are. But you gonna pay to have a conversation with somebody if you don't really know. They they they want to talk to you. That that's.


So yeah, I think being your authentic self matters. I think that is a case study for somebody that that told their story in a way that that gained enough interest. Like I I don't know who he was or what his story was, but I'm guessing his positioning was was set up well enough where he was able to get them.


Into the door.


But I don't know what happens after they get through the door. What I find most fascinating is what happens after people get through the door, like in my career. I've, there's salespeople, and then there's account managers.


I'm I'm more of an account manager. I'm the person that you talk to after you've been sold the bill of goods and I have to figure out how to make it work so that I structured my business that way. I structure everything that I do. That way I'm not a salesperson. I'm not going to sell you something because you know, I could tell.


You a way to.


Make it sound good, but I'd prefer to just be honest with you and say, listen, this is what the situation is.


You want to start a business, it's it's going to require these things based on what you're telling me you have around you. There's going to be some people are going to fall off to the wayside, but you'll replace them with people that actually.


Like want to see you succeed? They're a subtle haters like. I remember hearing that once, and I was like, what is the subtle hater? There are people that sit around you and be competing against you. You not even know it.


Like entrepreneurship and certain things like that, when you start making strides in your life, it shines a light on on those people because you get to see their reaction when you win and when you fail. And in entrepreneurship, you're going to have wins and failures all the time, so you get constant reminders of who's in it for you and who's.


No, definitely last little bit. And then I we can we can get up off of here cause I mean we ask you the questions, but we pretty much went through all the questions but yeah, but you said subtle haters.


And I I think it's more so This is why I I'm not scared to do anything or to ask certain type of questions or do whatever.


I used to do. I'm gonna give up one of one of my hustles, but I used to do mystery shopping when I lived in LA and yeah, it's it's a real thing. Y'all. It's a real thing. And so the city that I lived in, like, I can literally walk down the block and get like 10 done in a day. So.


I would make good money doing it because they were just all in one.




The convenience of it.


Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah. And so.


I called it my acting because they would give you a scenario and then you would go and do it right so I could be somebody that made $250,000. And I'm looking to buy a A house or something like that, right at a bank or I can go to a B&D BMW dealer and pretend like I'm being buying a BMW. And I couldn't afford a BMW.


Like 22 but.


So yeah, and so that one thing is that that gave me my my courage, you know, because I'm like, damn, I'm going here and play all these damn different characters and.


People and talk.


To these people, because I'm an introvert too, so that that kind of helped me come out of my whatever.


Yes, absolutely.


You want to call it.


And then #2 is, I never saw the same people.


When I went into these places because a lot of these ones, I would do every week, I would go back every week and do.


The same mystery shop.


And then #3, when you talk about the haters, it's like most people don't have the the get up and go in the oomph to to even try to do what you're going to do so.


That also gave me the fearlessness to go in and do whatever I wanted to do, ask the questions and whatever cause. I ain't gonna never see this person ever again in life. For whatever reason, they don't never have the same people. Number two people ain't. Ain't ain't going to be able to do it. You know, I I talked to people and they're like, damn, I can't believe you did that, you know.


Like, well, why wouldn't you do that? You know, shoot. I got to eat.


This This is why I say you have an entrepreneurial spirit. You understand that part. Once you understand that part, it's like, listen.


Identify the things you're willing to do to make your money, and then identify how much money you want to be able to make.


You find out how much you want to make, then it'll help you figure out what you're still willing to do for that money. First save what you're willing to do, then put the dollar amount to it and then say OK, what would I you know now how? How much of this am I willing to do to be able to get that to be able to hit this goal as long as you're able to do that, then you know, there's some things that allow you to sleep at night.


Some things that don't, some people sleep very well. Some people don't like you gotta know yourself. You gotta you have to customize these things to who you are.


Like the subtle haters, I I I'm. I'm also lumping into that the people that they may want to do things they aspire to things but they don't have the follow through to be able to do.


It and then.


Seeing you do it, just it it rubs them the wrong way in the way that they may not even be aware of and it's it's a subtle thing that you'll pick up on like when you have.


Great moments. You'll see that they're just kind of, you know.


It's they don't even have to to to not be happy for you. They're just happy for you in a different way. Then when they when, when something goes wrong, they're the first one there to console you. Like I'm looking at those things. And I, I repeat these back to other people so that they have a better idea of what you're looking.


At cause in some cases, yeah.


Yeah, but you. Yeah, you still you, you, you covered it right there. Like when you're doing, like the mystery shopping. Like you can do that once. But if you go back to that same person you try to be a different person and they remember who you are. Then it's gonna be like get out of my store.


So it's, that's the difference between selling something once and selling something multiple times. So if I'm doing the business assessment, that's one of the questions I'm asking, like how long do you want to be in business like, is this something that you're doing, like you're gonna pass on to your family? Is this something that you're doing just to make money? Because if you're just trying to make money, then there's all kind of strategies we can look at if you're trying to be around, then there's different things. But like, yeah, I I laugh at the strategies and the tactics because.


Those are things that you can do.


Once or twice.


But after that.


Then you have to come up with something else. So when I look at the gurus, they're like here's how you make 6 figures. I'm like.


No, that's how.


You made six figures. If I try to do the same thing, I might make 3 because I'm not you and I'm trying to do the same thing that you did. The way that you did it. Everybody's different. Everybody has different gifts. Everybody delivers things in a different way.


The energy is different. Everything's off. If you don't build something around who you are as your authentic person, then you can only be successful at it when you do that thing. But if you do it based on who you are.


You always who?


So if I'm helping you build something based on who you are and I'm saying, you know, we like one of the things I do is it's not just the business assessment, it's the personality assessment. It's looking at who you have around you like personality wise, there's, there's, there's assessments that you can take personality assessments. One of the things I do, if I know I'm going to be working with someone for a certain amount of time.


I want you to take that because I don't want you to think that I'm coming up with these things and that's just my like, how I view you. You should know how you're perceived, because if you understand how you're perceived, then you can work around or work with.


It so like like that just goes back to if it's something where, you know you're looking to do it and and it's close one.


Lining up and all the.


Rest of that, that's going to be a telltale sign for some people. So I might have to go back to the person and say, listen, one of the things we're going to do is we're gonna work on your branding, and we're going to put you.


In some clothes.


So that when somebody looks at it, they they don't look at that and go, aha.


Like one of my job is to make sure that there is no aha, or at least if you're going to do it, be authentic enough so that somebody can see that. Oh, I see. You don't have the clothes, but like, you got the results. So I don't care about the clothes as much. That would be the better way to be able to do that, cause that's something that you can do over a longer period of time. So it's really just a matter of the story that you want to tell how you're presenting yourself.


And the research that you've done with your audience, I'm making it sound a lot simpler than it is.


But I've been doing it for a long time, so to me it is that simple, but I realize how complicated it can be for other people. I think the toughest thing that I've realized is it's a difference between knowing something.


And teaching something.


Like I'm teaching myself to be able to, to teach people how to do it and knowing that my starting point is different than theirs. So I have to go to where their starting point.


And their understanding and then be able to walk them back to where I'm at and that's the beauty of being able to walk alongside someone because you get to see their progress and if you take on things that you care about, then it's a win every day.


Like you get to see people grow and all the rest of that. Like I, I have a the the first client I had, he was at a a job where he couldn't stand it. Like they they weren't appreciating.


Him at all.


And within six months, he was able to match his check. His wife had a son and she was pregnant with their daughter and he was able to leave that job. And then after he left, things went.


Straight for them and they want him to come back and they gave him negotiating power. He still ended up not going back. But like, that's the point.


To empower someone I know over the years I've had people that were high enough up in in life and in and things like that. And they said one of the most powerful things I can give you is the ability to say no.


Like, not all money is good money. They're going to be people that wave some money up under your nose and you, you know, by not allowing yourself to be in a spot where you have to take.




Is, is is already a certain level of freedom and then getting to the point where you make enough money where you can be more particular about the jobs that you want. Where like these are.


The ones that I like, so I only want to work with those.


That's on. That's another level of freedom. And then you get to the point where, like, when you get systems and things in place.




I imagine you know this better than like just as well as I do. There's nothing like getting a notification that you made money when you're not even in front of.


Your computer or doing work.


Oh, my God, that's so sweet. Like when people want to say, what's the benefits of entrepreneurship? Imagine being on vacation and seeing something come through where, like, you just spent money or you're going ohh. Can I afford this? And something comes through and it goes. Yes, you can.


Like you just made that money so you can go and spend what you need to be able to spend because you're making money while yell out while.


Yell on vacation.


And all the rest of that if if you're in it for the long term, then those are the things that you can look forward to as a reward when you do it the right way.


You said a whole bunch you're talking about saying no. I must be crazy because I always said no and I'd be broken so.


I don't know what.


I got I got principles and standards. Damn it. I'm not gonna do it.


Flags the red flag.




I know that's right. I got mines from the music industry. Like I I know that's the slippery slope I'm looking at all this stuff coming out. I was there when all that was going on and I think it is.


I don't. You don't do anything without asking. What's it gonna cost me?


Yeah. Like it's funny because when I was at Microsoft and stuff and, you know, some of my, my coworkers kind of distanced themselves from me because I was like, look, I ain't about to do all that. I'm going to give a damn what you talking about. I'm not. I'm just not going to do it. They're.


Like, well, I got.


Mouths to feed. I'm like a I got.


All right.


A mouth to feed too.


But I did just start things. I'm not gonna do. I'll take my. I'll go back to Mexico and live cheap. Look, look, I got my plan.


It's it's a serious thing.




So I don't. I don't know what you're talking about. I'm just. I'm just not going to do it. But like I I've I've always been that way. I guess. I'm like, look, I gotta hustle from my hustle from my back up, hustle that, hustle this hustle. So and this is part of why I created the podcast so people can see that, you know, you can pivot and do other things.


And you know, you don't necessarily have to depend on Microsoft or whatever else.


You know when you're out in these streets?


But but yeah, I guess my my last comment is is going back to the, you know people don't don't remember you and it used to crack me up even more because my name's not that common. My name is Elyse. You know, it's an old tiny name and I've only met like one other person in my whole life with the same.


Him and people just wouldn't think that it was me and outside of that I mean, I'm bald headed. I'm tall. You can't forget me, right? So, but people just, you know, never thought that it could ever be me, which is, which is funny to me.


Because I used to when I was in Mexico, of course I worked local food jobs right in order to bring in income to to do my entrepreneurship things.


And uh.


I wasn't supposed to be working in Mexico. Yeah, you know, I had the VPN and all that other kind of stuff. And so when they found out they were like, no, they it couldn't be her. Right. And and the crazy part is I'm all over the Internet. You know, you can clearly see my face.


Got blog and my names out there, but nobody ever said anything like you could have easily did a two second background check and found out that you know I was working so-called illegally in another country.


But and and and never, it never came up, though. That's the crazy part. So.


You told your story so right way.


You know, OK, but the ground is small. It ain't never been small for me.


Told your story the right way.


Now you know what it it it it really just comes down to how you carry it. Like so much of of sales is confidence. Why is somebody gonna buy from you if you if you don't believe in yourself?


So like it when you approach it the right way? Yeah, absolutely. I remember I being tall and and I mean again, both of us understand this when close one available like that. I had to get what I could fit in. Once I got to the point where I could start getting my clothes the way that I wanted them to. Oh, I instantly noticed the change in the corporate world. Like I went from asking people to do things and certain stuff like that and getting a certain type of response. And when I was up in the suit.


And I put on what I call the uniform. All of a sudden it was.


It it was a different level of respect and I mean, I got to the point where, like, once they gave it to me and they realized I actually deserved it. And I went back and had the conversation to go, you know, so doggone shame, because I was saying the same stuff when I was wearing jeans and sneakers, but because you needed to see the suit because they were like, why do you wear that every day? You're making it so that all the rest.


Of us have to wear it because when I came in the regular way, y'all didn't want to respect me.


So now y'all have to get up to where I'm at because I'm gonna come in wearing this uniform. And when you wear sneakers and and all this stuff and you just come looking like you rolled up out of bed, I'm gonna accumulate.


And it's going to make you it's it's going to make me stand out out of the way. So it's there's so many different things to leverage like.


I I you've got an entrepreneurial mindset. I like your about your business. I respect it and I understand it to go. You'll always have money.


That's the thing about entrepreneurs, like those that have that mindset, they're always going to be good when these when when we hit these recessions and things like that, there are some people that are crazy enough to go, this is my chance to make money because now everybody has a need. And when you know that there are people, there are businesses that thrive and then they're those that, that, that fail.


So just always keeping your head on this little, being mindful of the landscape, I always see business opportunities everywhere because I'm paying attention. But like when I repeat it back to some people, sometimes they're just like, oh, you always got something to say and then it's one of those things later where it pops up and it's like, yeah, I mean, This is why I I said I'm petty enough to be. And I told you so person.


I know what I'm looking at and then you see it later. And they're like, oh, yeah, what are the chances? Well, I mean.


We we talked about it and you didn't want to do it. So like, it's sometimes what's hard for me specifically is I care about the the clients that I work with. That's the beauty of of no, because I only want to take on stuff that I believe in and this is how I know I'll give them my all because I believe in what you're doing. So when I get in this situation and they.


Want to start going left?


That's another reason why I baked in the ability to be able to part ways, because I'm an honest person. If I see you doing something, I'm like, oh, that's not gonna end well. And you wanna do it anyway. Then I'm like, OK, my brother has to saying this is my stop. I'm gonna get off here.


Hey, go do what you're doing. But I'm. I'm. I'm getting off here. Like, that's a dark Rd. You getting ready to go down. And I don't want to go down there with you. So you have to be able to do those things as a business person. That is the part where some people may take it as being cut through. But it's the good sense of business.


Because you can't.


Throw good money behind bad money if you see somebody.


Going down the road where it's not going to.


Well, when you try to save a drowning person, sometimes you can drown yourself. Sometimes the best thing to do is to stay up on dry land and toss them a life preserver and you know, try to help them get back and pull them in. But you can't go where they're at, so stay where you're at, where you know you can do where you can be of help and and focus on what you know you can do.


By be your authentic self, do something that you know you can do on a bad day. When it comes to like, I'm talking about entrepreneurship, but in general like.


Find something that you know you can do on a bad day. If you if you're going into work, go into it as a with the consultants mindset and this new world and industry we're in. Because the way they cut people like one of the things that I noticed was when they were during the pandemic and and the George Floyd and all of us at there were all these businesses that were saying how they hired minorities and they were doing this and they were doing that when they started doing those layoffs.


The first people are out were with some of those minorities and they never advertised that they got rid of them. They held the narrative of, oh, we did this great thing. But if you go to look up that person, you sit there right back to being unemployed again. So.


Again, storytelling is everything you create the perception that you want to be able to have, and then you just hope that you can hold it up. If you're not being authentic. And if you are being authentic, then you don't really have to worry about it like that. People can come challenge you, but like, how can somebody challenge who you really are?


Alright, Sean, let's, let's close it out. Where can we find you?


I am on LinkedIn.


Facebook someone on Twitter LinkedIn is probably going to be one of the best places to define me. I am currently building out courses to walk people through transitioning from being in the corporate world over to starting their own business. So I'm going through the different business during these stages create a website.


Majority Academy, so majority dot Academy and I'll just keep putting the courses up there so that people can kind of take that in.


And and and then there's the business majority dot media. So everything's majority because it's my inside joke of they call us minorities, but there's more of us than everybody else. So we're really the majority. And if we ever looked at it that way, then we would stop having the same struggles because once everybody decided to be able to help each other out, you know, everybody would eat.


So I am doing my part to make sure that everybody eats by doing it this way and majority Academy is where the courses are and then majority media is where ioffer my actual services.


All right, y'all y'all heard it from Sean. My name is Elyse Robinson with the nobody wants to work through podcast.


And make sure you sign up for the newsletter at switching to tech.com so I can send out uh, whatever's going on in my life and the new episodes, and see y'all next week.