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With Scott Orn

A Startup Podcast by Kruze Consulting

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Scott Orn

Scott Orn, CFA

James Schramko of SuperFastBusiness - Building Productive Business & Personal Effectiveness Habits

Posted on: 03/27/2017

James Schramko

James Schramko

Founder & CEO - SuperFastBusiness

James Schramko of SuperFastBusiness - Podcast Summary

James Schramko of SuperFastBusiness discusses building productive habits both personally and professionally. James has founded multiple successful businesses on the web and now focuses on SuperFastBusiness, an Executive Coaching service with international clientele. James’ SuperFastBusiness podcast is excellent and a must listen.

James Schramko of SuperFastBusiness - Podcast Transcript

Scott: Welcome to Founders and Friends Podcast with Scott Orn at Kruze Consulting. And my very special guest today is James Schramko of SuperFast Business. Welcome, James.
James: Thank you for having me, Scott.
Scott: So I’ve listened to James’s podcasts for a very long time. It’s a real pleasure having him on the podcast. I like his podcasts because he has so many different approaches to living, so many different approaches to business. I guess, the way we describe it is the concept of personal effectiveness and how to be your best and how to live a life of your choosing. So I wanted to have James on the podcast. Maybe you can start off by just telling your story and how you got to this place.
James: Well, the short version is I went from school to some study in accounting. Didn’t finish that. I got a bunch of other jobs, worked my way into administration roles then debt collection and sales; sales management, general management and then by the end of my career I was running a large Mercedes Benz dealership here in Sydney. I stepped away from that after I figured out how to build a website. And my own business, which was predominantly selling things online as an affiliate, took off. And I never looked back. That was..Gee, almost 10 years ago. Since then I’ve been helping other people figure out this online business stuff. What I’ve found is that a lot of the skills that I had built as a general manager are applicable for smaller businesses trying to figure out how to bust out of their own job. If they already have their own business, they can be far more effective with that. And I find the same things holding back people over and over again. So that’s where I spend most of my time now, is focusing on giving solutions to people who are stuck.
Scott: Coaching is a business, but I’m sure it just makes you so happy. Life is pretty good when you’re bringing joy and choice and success to a lot of other people.
James: Yeah, it’s almost a byproduct. My primary business was not coaching people for quite some time. It was helping people buy software that would help them build a website. Then it was helping people with search engine optimization services especially ecommerce stores and software businesses and small agencies. Some of our resellers were selling to enterprise companies really big brands, top 100 companies and we did website development. I actually had my own businesses, and in those businesses I was providing a service and I wasn’t teaching anybody anything. It’s just that other people wanted to know how I did it - from buying a domain name to doing 7-figures in revenue, and then selling it. So I’ve sold that and now started another business that’s completely separate from coaching. The coaching is really just because people keep asking for help and I don’t know how to help them. So it became a natural thing. I’ve ended up with two groups now. I’ve got a general coaching platform which is highly accessible, and a really good value. And then there’s the very high level, where I’ve got a smaller group of people who invest a lot in themselves. Those people are in turn running 7- and 8-figure businesses and doing spectacularly well. This stuff now I’ve seen working across the board. That’s led me to the point where I’m now doing revenue shared deals where I help people improve their business for a percentage of the upside.
Scott: Wow! That’s really smart actually, because that allows you to have some real skin in the game and be really aligned with the person you are coaching. They only pay if things are really working with you.
James: Exactly right. And so, it only works if you know what you’re doing, and the person who I’m partnering with is getting all this positive upside. They don’t have to split up shares or get messy with directorships and assets, etc. It’s really just a very simple formula as a percentage of revenue on an amount over where they are at when they start. So, for the right person it’s a great deal for them, and it’s a great deal for me. Because as you said, I’m fully aligned to improving them in any possible way. It’s not just helping them build a funnel or introducing them to the right person and helping them to improve their mindset around business. It could be anything that I’d do that contributes to their success. I’m a stakeholder in that, and they are a majority stakeholder in that. They get the lion’s share of the upside, and I just take a little bit for my effort. I did learn this sort of stuff from some of the people who I studied, and then I got some great advice from them in person, that guided me down this path.
Scott: Wow! To be free enough in your frameworks and advice..I’m curious on the coaching stuff. Are these group sessions? Or are they individual coaching? Or how does it work?
James: I’m not a fan of one-to-one as a strict business model, because it’s very unleveraged. I do hybrid programs. So there’s group elements, and there are also some one-to-one elements. So it gets that personalization and customization, but it’s also leveraged, because a lot of the power in these groups is the peer-to-peer discussions. If I’ve got 30 people, for example, in my very high level program. And they are all really taking names and kicking butt. They’ve got good ideas to exchange with each other. It would be restricting their progress if I step in there and hog them to myself. So they get one-to-one on boarding, and they get one-to-one tune ups. They get group calls and group asset exchanges where they are sharing SOPs and frameworks and techniques that work for them in a small environment.
Scott: That’s really cool. My mom owned her business for 25 years. She actually joined a regional group in the San Francisco Bay Area with a bunch of other entrepreneurs, but she got so much value out of that group. I remember her coming home and constantly talking about that. So I’m a huge fan of these type of coaching networks, where you can really learn not just from someone who’s been there and done it like you, but also someone who’s going through it at the same time like a fellow entrepreneur.
James: I think there’s huge value in looking outside yourself for inspiration and ideas. And really, you just have to work from a return-on-investment formula. It’s really simple. If you invest X, will you get X back or even more than X back? And if you can then it’s okay to layer on several coaching groups or have access to multiple resources. It’s the same as you might read more than one business book. There’s no limit on how many you can have except for your personal capacity. That’s where I’ve been really deeply refining processes to allow us to be far more productive so that we can cover more area or have more impact. In some cases, doing a lot less things but we need to know what the right things are. And to know what the right things are, you have to have the buffer available to you in the first place.
Scott: Yeah, and it’s not about making more money. It’s about, maybe reducing your stress. Or getting into a new market or doing something like that. For some people, they are doing fine financially, but they just have a hard time coping with the stress. That’s super valuable as well.
James: Well, it’s some ideas that’s past a certain point, it’s not going to really impact your life. If you had…I think the number’s something like $25 million, that Ricardo Semler talks about. But if you have $25 million, it’s not much that you’re going without. You can still have a nice house, nice car, a nice boat; travel around the world; eat in fine restaurants; have wonderful clothes; go to rock concerts - whatever you want. That amount of money you can re-invest and earn a dividend from. So, after that. Are going to be happy with a 100 million or 200 million? Or, in some cases you could have a perfectly good lifestyle of a few hundred thousand dollars a year, and certainly if you can generate a $1 million a year profit, you’re going to have a substantially better lifestyle than someone who is earning $30,000 a year and just getting buy-on food stamps. So I think we can take responsibility for upgrading our lifestyle. And I think we can be smart about what we do so that we can leverage our time, because we all have the exact same amount of time resource available to us. It’s really just a case of what are the things you are doing to get more bank for buck.
Scott: That’s a great entre into the way you think, and things you’ve learned from your experiences. What I love about the way you approach this is, it’s all stuff you’ve done, tried and it worked for you. Maybe the way to think about this is when you have a new student in your coaching program, how do you open up the program? How do you work with them? What do you talk about?
James: The first thing I do is an analysis of what’s going on, like an audit as such. So when someone comes on board, I ask them to complete a survey. This survey is fairly comprehensive and it goes into things that you might not expect on a business-related thing. What I think I’m offering is more than business - It’s how to have a better life in essence. So I’ll be asking things like how much stuff is piled up in their garage right now? How up-to-date is their wardrobe?
Scott: Those are great questions though.
James: I ask them things like how much fun do they have? And do they travel as much as they want? Are they getting enough sleep? Are they healthy? Do they enjoy the work they are doing? These things are deeper rooted than just money. Often you’ll find a pattern where someone might be not in the greatest health. They might have things all in a bit of disarray. All of this stuff accumulates into almost an immovable barrier to moving forward successfully. Because until you deal with some of that, a lot of that is deeply in the mind and it needs to be catharticised. I don’t know if that’s a word, but let’s just run with that. I get in there and I start moving things around to free them up, and they bump into similar things. In the beginning stuck/overwhelmed/overload/stress/adrenal glands on fire to if you fast forward a year later often their biggest challenge is they are growing at a fast rate, they’re having hiring staffing challenges. They’re having strategy challenges. Do they go in-house? Do they still use the external contractor? Should they get a bigger office? Should they buy their competitors? These sort of things. Different problems as you go up to the revenue scale. What I help people do is encourage them to pick the point where they are going to be in their sweet spot. So for me it’s not actually$10 million a year in revenue. Because I don’t want some of the things that might involve physical office, or having a lot of sales reps - all these sort of things like I used to have when I was running a dealership. I like to sit in my sweet spot where I’ve got a surplus of income to what my living costs are. I feel that I’ve got a legacy being created and I’m doing good work that I’m excited about, and I get to surf every single day, which is the most important thing for me.
Scott: Every time I talk to you you’re talking about the surf. So it’s very true folks. You made a very good about people that their bedroom’s cluttered, or their wardrobe’s cluttered or whatever it is. I think that’s a really great insight, because I’ve even been in this position - Vanessa and I in Kruze Consulting in 2015. You said it our adrenaline glands were on fire. I’ve totally been there. Every day you’re putting out fires. It’s really, really hard to get past putting out fires and building systems. I’m lucky in that Vanessa is just fantastic at building systems and processes, and that’s what pulled us out of being a 3- or 4-person company to being almost a 20-person company today. I certainly wouldn’t have been able to do it myself - Vanessa’s really the one who did that. It sounds like you’re helping them pull themselves out of that and helping them build those processes and systems.
James: Definitely. Systems stands for Saves You Stress, Time, Energy, Money. If you want to think about it in terms of railway tracks, what I’m helping them do is figure out what station they want to go to. Where are they now and where do they want to go to? Will they be happy when they get there? Which is very important, because you see a lot of entrepreneurs build something that they hate. For example, they’ll quit their job and then they’ll start their own business, and now they are working twice as long for half the pay. And they got all this extra stress, burden, houses on the line in case they fail, their relationships torn up, and they are starting to get unhealthy with their fitness. They are drinking and putting on weight, and they’re eating poorly. And then they go on and get an office and fill it with staff, and what do you know? They’ve built exactly what they left. So we have to make sure that the station that we’re going to is going to be suitable. And then when once we’ve figured that out we just build the tracks between where we are and where we want to get to. Things that I do, such as the weekly call and the diagnostic one-on-ones are tune-ups to say, ‘Are we still on track?’ Using techniques like 12-weekly reporting periods we can buffer ourselves from getting off-track. So when opportunities present, a little bright shining object magnet that wants us to jump into the next thing that comes along is switched off. Our magnet’s turned off. There’s no current running through it. We don’t look at that until the end of the 12-week period. So, we have a review point. We say, ‘Listen, we’ll take this on-board but we’ll stick it in the cargo carriage, and we won’t open it until we get to the station.’ When we get to the station, we’ll re-assess. It’s having these sort of shields from the distractions that cause people to run through life in a trance and go from reaction to reaction. We want to stop that. We want to be more purposeful. We want to have a specific intent and we need to know exactly what the right things to be doing are, and we need to reject what the wrong things or at least delay them - put them to a review point.
Scott: I love that. You mentioned the bright shiny object. I used to work with a CEO named Benjamin Wayne at Callisto, and he always talked about that. Startups and creative people in general are always coming up with a new idea, it’s that bright shiny idea that they want to chase. But in reality you can’t really do that. I love that you’re putting some structure around people, especially with the diagnostic at the beginning and then the weekly check-ins. Keeping people and keeping yourself on track is really, really hard. But if you can do it, that’s how you become successful. It’s that kind of super focus and making sure you do a job well done before you move on to the next job.
James: Well, it’s a process over time. For example, it’s like taking a rookie down to the bowling alley and then sticking up the bumper rails so they can’t put the ball into the alley. If they keep practicing over time, they’ll end up being able to hit the pins, and they won’t need the bumper in the end and then they become more evolved. By that stage, then I’m teaching them to bring in their own team and teach them how to bowl with bumpers and then to remove those things. Those people start to bring in people and so forth. It’s a process that is able to be accepted with a little bit of help in the beginning. Of course, it’s scary and it’s hard. If you are sticking the ball into the gutter every time you go bowling - you’re going to give up. So it makes sense to go on and get help from someone who already knows how to do it, and can give you that confidence and reassurance and help you make good decisions. So I’d say, the bulk of what I’m doing is being a guide or a sounding board, and just showing people a shorter path, but eliminating the obvious mistakes - obvious to me, but not to them - that they are making. And sometimes they even know they are doing something, but they don’t even know how to correct it.
Scott: That’s an awesome point, too. People would generally know, but they just don’t know how to get out of the rudder. Just getting a little bit deeper in your 12-week program, are you giving them exercises on how to break free? I conceptually understand the process and how to get on the rail from one point to the destination, but what are some of the things you help people with? Like exercises or self evaluation? How do they actually get there?
James: Well, the main thing we’re doing at first upfront diagnostic, is getting them to just spill their guts. I want the whole block of marble. I want everything. I want to know their available assets. I want to know what tricks they have in play. What grand ideas they have? What their ambition is? Then what we do is we chip it away. We find that statue of David inside the marble. Then once we’ve defined that statue then we make that our focus. We stick up the bumper rails and we work on that for 12 weeks. With a weekly call and check-ins. In fact, they can even communicate with me on an app. So they’re not far away - they’ve got me in their pocket. They have really no excuse for not getting some progress. And really the secret, if you want to boil that all down, is they only have one thing to do each week. If you only have one thing to do each week, then after 5o weeks - let’s allow some time for Christmas and holiday - but after 50 weeks of doing one thing you’re getting somewhere.
Scott: For sure. What are some of the responses or the feedbacks for you when they come out of that 12-week program?
James: Well, it’s not so much a 12-week program, it’s an indefinite on-going program. But we work in 12-week time periods. We don’t look at annual goals, which is a ridiculously long time especially in business. But 12 weeks is long enough to commit to something and see an end for it. So what sort of response - well, for most people the very first thing they are interested in doing is getting a return on their investment. For my higher level program, the investment is larger than my lower level program. Almost within 1 to 3 months they already make back whatever they’ve spent on the program. By 6 months they are seeing a massive gain. Within 3 months which is that 12-week period they’ve had a return on investment and from then on it’s just cream and profit. They just get compounded results. The exciting ones for me are a year or two down the track, when we look back. I can cite numerous examples. Things like Kevin Rogers has membership called Copy Chief. That’s a great example of changing the pricing and packaging of an industry. Copywriters generally are like tortured animals. They win a copywriting job. They get all bent out of shape trying to write the sales copy. They have deadlines, and they get stressed and neurotic and crazy. They have to deliver the work. The customer argues with them about the stuff and then changes it. It may or may not work, and they may or may not get a trailer commission. They may or may not get paid. But they certainly usually only get paid once somewhere up front, and sometimes a trailer if they are great. Then it all starts again. They’ll go into their famine mode where they are desperately searching for their next customer now that their desk is clear. They go and get another job. Or they’re going to get a couple of ones and then they get double stressed. This feast and famine can really wreak havoc with your ability to have relationships, and to conduct stable and sensible finances. So this industry is tough. What we did together was I said, ‘Listen Kevin, what you should do is create a membership community for copywriters. You be the leader of this community. Bring them all together and then pair it up with business owners who need copywriting but are having trouble dealing with these neurotic feast/famine, available/not-available types.’ So we’ve created this community called Copy Chief. He brought together all the copywriters. He trains them. He teaches them how to do interviews. He teaches then how to do storytelling. He teaches them formulas for developing sales hooks. So if you are a copywriter you can learn your craft there, and you pay a very small fee to get access to a high level copywriter. But for Kevin, when he’s got hundreds of copywriters paying a very small fee each month, it’s a lot like a Software as a Service business where have a good user base which is funding your business. The great things about his business is he doesn’t really have software development costs. He’s really only got a small fee to host a membership. He has an energy free of cost to turn up and put that charisma into it. But it’s very scalable and it doesn’t really cost a lot more to provide the service to a thousand copywriters as it does for 500 copywriters. So, the profit just stacks up and up. Then you can have related products or higher level services from there. He’s got this great community where business owners can get access to really well-priced copy or learn how to do it themselves. Copywriters can get access to business owners who’re looking for copywriters. Some of the very well renowned sales letters that you see on the internet, some of those have been incubated in Copy Chief.
Scott: I actually was a member of Copy Chief and I know Kevin. I worked with him at Callisto. He is a fantastic guy. I didn’t know you were actually helping him. I remember when you started it - probably a couple of years ago - it is such an awesome idea. What I loved about it was he also wasn’t afraid to make himself like the industry expert, and raise his hand and say, ‘I’m going to do this. I’m going to create this community and it’s going to create so much benefit for community and industry-wide.’ Because I was one of those people - I was a business person who needed help with copy. It was fantastic.
James: Well, that started as a Skype call.
Scott: Really? That’s awesome.
James: Saying, ‘James, give me some help.’ Like, ‘What do I do? I’m sick of doing the same thing.’ And he was scared and it was difficult. There were phases where he felt like giving up on it or changing the pricing model. We stuck through it. As I was saying, the more developed version - a few years down the road, you look back and think, ‘Well, that was a great idea.’ And now other people are thinking they might want to do that sort of thing. But he’s got legacy and momentum, and he’s got that market clearly established. There are other examples, too. I remember, I used to deal with this young chap on the Warrior Forum, who had some great looking graphic designs. A client of mine sent me some when I was selling some Excite Pro software as an affiliate. And he said, ‘Can you make these templates to Excite Pro?’ So I got in touch with this young designer. I said, ‘One of my clients wants me to convert these to Excite Pro. Is that okay with you?’ He said, ‘Yeah, sure.’ I said, ‘How about I’ll split you 50-50 on whatever I sell?’ And he said, ‘Yes. That sounds great.’ So I started this joint venture, and we made lots of sales. Then I started going into the area where I’d sell websites to corporate clients. I went back to this designer and said, ‘Can you make me a website? Because I really suck at building websites and you’re a great designer.’ He said, ‘Sure. I’ll do it.’ So he built me websites for $500. And then I said, ‘Listen, we need to pay you a little more.’ I was able to sell these for a lot more. He couldn’t really believe it, because he’s selling these templates for $17. Then this guy in Australia’s wanting to send him $500. He’s a 21 or 20-year old, so this was a lot of money for him. I said, ‘Hey, listen a lot of people have got websites needing better design, what you should do is build in all these designs, and all these templates and graphics into the software. Build it into Word Press.’ The end result of that was called Optimize Press. So James Dyson made his first million dollars with his Software as a Service within 12 months. He was my first million dollar student. This was quite some time ago now. It’s just re-packaging an idea that is sold at hard core by templates and building it into a very easy to use platform, and he’s had a great run with that software. There’s more and more examples of this where the students over time, are just creating these amazing things by challenging the way that things are sold, but also they are thinking about it differently. They do succumb to the same hang-ups like, ‘Where do I spend my time? What’s going to have the highest impact? How do I free up my routine to focus on the things that are important?’ Also a very similar related thing to both of these topics of personal effectiveness and pricing packaging is, you’re going to need a team. I think that’s been my special that I pass on to these people is how to build a team and step out of being in the fire pit. They are one layer back now. And life’s a lot of easier one layer back.
Scott: You made so any great points there. The first one, just to reiterate both examples were people effectively productizing their knowledge, or productizing their expertise. With Kevin and the Copy Chief community and the Optimize Press stuff. They basically took something they were doing and like you said, they built the business around it. Instead of just doing on-offs or being mom and pop and always having to chase the next sale. I really love that. I can really relate to that with Kruze Consulting, because Vanessa…That’s how she started. She was able to systemize things. It makes all the different in the world. Now we have 18 people working here. Life is still tough and stressful, but it’s a lot more fun. It’s a lot more rewarding. Like you said, we’re leaving a little bit of a legacy where we’re helping all these startups, instead of just helping 5 or 10 to get by. So that approach of productizing that you’re doing makes so much sense to me. The other thing, when you were talking I remember from talking to Kevin around that time when he was doing Copy Chief, he was always struggling with his personal opportunity cost and what he could be making as a fee in the time he was spending on Copy Chief. Do you remember talking to him about that stuff? Maybe some of the wisdom you gave to him?
James: Oh, yeah. I’ve talked to him about that sort of stuff many times. See, a lot of things especially Software as a Service or a membership start off a little smaller. They are really just like, like I bought this house once that had just grass in the backyard. Nothing. No vegetation. We had this big house behind us that would look down into our backyard. So, I basically dug up 3 or 4 foot from the fence all the way around - like a U-shaped - this backyard. I put in gravel and agricultural pipe and filled the top soil. Then I went and bought plants for like $3000 or $4000. I hired a guy to help me put them in the ground. But they were really small, because if you buy mature plants it might have cost me $30,000. They were only a foot tall, some of them were 2 feet tall. I just saw a picture of this house last week. Now this was probably 15 years ago that I did this. I just saw a picture when it was being sold again. And these trees, they are blocking the whole view from the house behind like they are 20 feet tall now. That’s what you have to have in mind. What is this plant going to be like a few years from now? What is this membership or this Software as a Service going to look like not now, but in a year from now or 2 years from now. So the thing that I said to Kevin, and I just mentioned this to him on a recent podcast episode is, ‘Celebrate the tyranny. Celebrate the difficulty of how hard it is in the beginning, because that’s what keeps your competitors away. The other 50 copywriters who are looking at you and thinking, ‘I’ll just set up a membership.’ They are not going to be able to get through that phase. They won’t be able to crawl over the broken glass to get to the other side. ‘Just stick through it. As long as you have confidence that it’s the right business model, that you’re really clear on what it’s going to look like in the future.’ That confidence can come from having done it multiple times. It can come from access to good data. It can come from early validation that you have a reasonable faith in. I’m not talking about blind faith. I’m not talking about if you’re in the desert and you’re walking away from the watering hole. You could walk as far as you want but you’re still not going to get a drink, but if you’re pretty certain the right direction, and you’ve seen evidence that it could pan out and you have someone helping you, you can get through it. So we overcame that resistance. We actually set up a filter. I’ll tell you what that filter is, I’m sure Kevin wouldn’t mind me sharing it. It was simply; Does this serve Copy Chief? That’s the filter. So for anything he does, we ask if it serves Copy Chief. Even the comedy gigs that he does it’s building an audience that help him with his marketing and his brand. He’s being more Kevin. He’s being himself. People are resonating with that. Thousands of people watch his car videos now because he’s funny and entertaining. If you look at the results of 2017 you’ll see the results. It is worth tuning in and overcoming that resistance. In some ways I think it would be much harder for a copywriter to change their stripes than a regular business person because copywriters are extra emotional. They’ve got an extra clicky community or group of people who have done things for so long. A lot of their material is rooted in the direct response world which is pre-internet and old school if you want to come up a word.
Scott: That analogy you had about your house and planting the trees is so perfect, because that’s really how it works. You have to be patient and let it build. You’re so right about how your competitors have a hard time pushing through those really tough points. I couldn’t agree as much anymore. On that subject there is thing. A lot of your business has been on the internet. If you’re building that community on the internet or that business on the internet, it compounds a lot even faster because one thing the internet’s really good at is when someone’s onto something it makes it really easy for other’s to find them. And Copy Chief the community for copywriters, that’s one Google search away. You might not know this about me, but I built along with my co-founder and a bunch of volunteers an internet community called Ben’s Friends that provides patient support for people with various diseases. We’re one of the largest in the world. That started with Ben and I starting one community and greeting people - each person that joined, and now we have hundreds of thousands of people who come to those communities every month. So it could really happen on the internet. The internet is just amazing because it happens even faster. It’s way better than doing it in a physical retail or a physical business.
James: I just love the fact that you can be in whatever country as long as you have access to the internet, you could do a podcast in your underpants if you feel like it. It has opened up opportunities. When I go through my family diaries, I’ve found some fantastic diaries from my great-grandfather, who was a very unconventional guy. He was the co-founder of the Sydney Stock Exchange - we’re talking about a hundred years ago. He had gold and silver mines all around the world. He would write in his diary his travel notes, his inventory of shirts, paper colors. He would go for months on boats. He’d visit Japan, and Russia and Africa. He was originally from England and he ended up in Australia. He would buy a gold mine in Russia and then go to America and sell it. He was like a buy-sell-arbitrage guy. He was basically the closest to what I do for a living now, which is geo-arbitrage, travelling the world, cross-pollinating ideas between markets. It’s just that it’s so much easier with the internet than doing it the old way, and I’m thankful for that. I probably couldn’t have done this job 20 years ago.
Scott: Yeah. You also made the point earlier about how important building a team is. And the internet really makes that across different countries, across different time zones and makes it so much easier to do.
James: It does. It opens up the available catchment, and also helps you find good pockets of labor that have unique properties. For example, pretty much all of my team - most of them, are in the Philippines. It’s got a unique combination of great labor rates and they have incredible English, thanks to the USA. So they are an anomaly in that region. They’ve got a wonderful family culture as well. Really loyal and smart, well educated. You couldn’t really open those things up before. We’ve seen that with manufacturing. We saw Japan do this with cameras, and then with shoes and cars. They just dominate the US market by having great manufacturing and getting to the market at a more effective construction rate etc. Most of us have an iPhone or clothing that wasn’t made in our own country. So it’s a thing, and the internet helps you take advantage of that. It can be a positive and a negative. Other things like social media and the instant availability of all kinds of television and distractions can really wreak havoc with you. It’s changing the way people communicate. I’ve certainly noticed that with my own kids. They have grown up with phones, whereas I didn’t. I’m probably the last generation who would be out riding their BMX bike until the street lights come on, with no helmet.
Scott: I’m the same.
James: I know what it’s like to be away from my phone for a while. I can do that because I experienced that at some point in my life, but the next generation haven’t really experienced that. So they are quite different. They have different requirements. I noticed in some of the young entrepreneurs that they can be particularly unfocused. Some of them on the first call that I do with them - I’m hearing alerts and pings and dings and what-have-you, and I’m like, ‘What is that?’ I remember one of my great students, he said, ‘Oh, this is my phone.’ I said, ‘You’ve got to turn that stuff off. You go to it. Don’t let it come to you.’ He has become a model of discipline for his generation. He’s cranked over his first 7-figure a year, last year. And he’s going to go a lot further than that, but he’s a young guy really kicking but he’s got some old school discipline about it.
Scott: I love it. Well, let’s wrap it up. If you can summarize some of the key points in the personal effectiveness? And then also, I just really recommend James’s podcasts SuperFast Business podcasts. You can find it in iTunes. I listen to it all the time. So, please check that out on SuperFast Business. But maybe James you can summarize the key points. And then your coaching - having listened to your podcasts for a long time, I know your coaching program would be really successful.
James: Well, thank you. Look, the key point, Scott; just make a decision about what you actually want. How do you want to live? And if you’re not happy with what you’ve got cooking right now, you don’t have to deal with that. More than likely you can make a change. I know someone might listen to this and think, ‘It’s alright for you. You’ve got it all sorted out.’ But I certainly wasn’t like that if you go back 10 years ago. I had a job. I had a mortgage. I had kids. My job was a high pressure job too, if you want to wheel out excuses. I had 4 kids to provide for at an expensive cost of living in Sydney. My job was sucking out 60 hours a week. I was a general manager. I had 70 something staff underneath me that I was responsible for in this $50 million a year revenue business. I still manage to scrape together my home business on the side. It was not easy. The real purpose behind what I do now is to help people not have to make it so hard on themselves. So things like building a team was a breakthrough for me. The big takeaways are; Decide what you want. Set up a 12-weekly goal, and put up those rails so that you avoid all the distractions. Work on the right things that are going to have the most impact which means maybe cutting out some of the things that you are doing. Do a task analysis on yourself. What things are you doing? What could you stop doing? What could you give to someone else? What could you automate? Set a review point in your calendar now for 12 weeks so that you can pop up and say, ‘What did I achieve in the last 12 weeks?’ I would just focus on one thing per week. Give yourself a simple, unavoidable goal. You can’t hide from one thing. It’s either you did it or you didn’t do it. To what degree did you do it? Zero? Or 10%? Or 50%? But even 10% on one thing each week is better than zero movement somewhere. That’s what I do. If you want to get some help with that, of course SuperFast Business has a great membership and I do get personally involved in your success. So, I appreciate you having me on the show, Scott.
Scott: Oh, my pleasure. And I hope we’ll do it again another time. Again, I can’t recommend SuperFast Business enough. It’s a fantastic podcast, and I encourage you to check out James’s coaching. All right buddy, thanks for being on the podcast and I’ll catch you in a few months.
James: Thanks, Scott.
Scott: Alright, take care.

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