How Can Entrepreneurs Build a Business with Passion? This Marketing Pro Has a Blueprint – 221
Sometimes it’s hard to separate your hobbies, your passions and how you choose to make money. Too often, e-commerce sellers try to combine all three. In this episode of the AM/PM Podcast, Tim Jordan speaks with Doug Foley, a marketing pro who presents what he refers to as a “breakout blueprint” showing how to put your passion to work for you.
Doug says that we’re in the midst of a perfect e-commerce storm right now. Understanding the difference between your passion and your hobbies is the first step towards creating financial freedom. He explains that things really start to gain forward momentum when e-commerce sellers “take action and start building something.”
How do you determine your passion? Doug says that it’s as easy as considering what section of the bookstore you gravitate towards. It’s a question of, “paying attention to what has YOUR attention.”
Who doesn’t want more passion?
In episode 221 of the AM/PM Podcast, Tim and Doug discuss:
- 02:45 – Selling Makeup and Blogging About Hunting and Fishing
- 06:00 – “Not Relying on Others” is Music to an Entrepreneur
- 08:00 – It’s a Perfect E-Commerce Storm Right Now
- 09:00 – Picking Your Passion, Not Your Hobby
- 11:30 – Creating a Blueprint That Allows Time for Your Passions
- 14:00 – Adding Value to a Marketplace
- 18:00 – The Breakout Blueprint
- 21:00 – “Take Action and Go Build Something”
- 23:20 – Measure Twice, Cut Once
- 25:30 – Paying Attention to What Has Your Attention
- 31:00 – As Entrepreneurs, Decision Fatigue is Real
- 35:00 – After Building a Business, That Knowledge Becomes Invaluable
- 33:00 – How to Contact Doug
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Tim Jordan: They say that starting and running a business should be fun. They say that it should be easy. It can be fun, but it’s definitely not easy. And a lot of times we run out of steam, we get discouraged, we get depressed, we run out of energy. We kind of let ourselves fall off the path to success that we know that we want to be walking on. This week’s episode, we’re talking to Doug Foley who’s going to talk to us about how to stay on that path, how to stay encouraged, how to stay energized by connecting our passion with our business. And there’s a few surprises in here that I didn’t expect too because I didn’t even understand exactly what passion was. Make sure to check out the whole episode. There’s some really great nuggets throughout the whole thing. And we’ll see in just a minute.
Tim Jordan: Hi, I’m Tim Jordan and in every corner of the world, entrepreneurship is growing. So, join me as I explore the stories of successes and failures. Listen in as I chat with the risk takers, the adventurous and the entrepreneurial veterans. We all have a dream of living a life, fulfilling our passions, and we want a business that doesn’t make us punch a time clock, but instead runs around the clock in the AM and the PM. So, get motivated, get inspired. You’re listening to the AM/PM Podcast.
Tim Jordan: Hey everybody. And welcome to another episode of the AM/PM Podcast. Today, we have an excellent guest who has written a book. He’s built a few businesses, he’s run a successful podcast, all sorts stuff. His name is Doug Foley, and he’s going to be talking today about something that’s close to my heart, which is passion. And passion, I think is something that a lot of us kind of understand, should be related to, or associated with our business, but understanding maybe why and how we use that passion to build our business and then having a blueprint. That’s something that we all need. So that’s what Doug’s here to share with us today. So Doug, thank you so much for being on. Hope that you’re doing well.
Doug Foley: Thanks so much for having me. It’s an interesting time right now with the election being yesterday.
Tim Jordan: Yeah. That’s absolutely true. It just frames 2020, right? So, we’re recording this, I think the week that we’re going to release this episode. So yeah, it’s Wednesday, November 4th. We just got over this crazy election night. We’ve going through a crazy COVID year. Everything is unsettling, but it’s exciting to continue to film these episodes because in the midst of all that, we know one thing and that’s that business is still going well for a lot of people, even if they’ve had to change their business models, maybe the restaurant shut down or something, but e-commerce is still booming. And there’s a lot of digital marketing opportunities. So I feel blessed. I don’t know about you to be in this space regardless of what’s happening in the world goes on. And I think that it’s easy for everybody to get wrapped up in the hype, but day to day, we just need to keep on trudging so to speak. I don’t know if you agree with that.
Doug Foley: I couldn’t agree more. I think the greatest gift we have is entrepreneurship.
Tim Jordan: I agree. All right. So before we get started on this content, why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself, professionally, what you’re doing now, how you got to this point, and that should kind of help me set the stage for why the information, the advice that you have is valid.
Doug Foley: Absolutely. I come from a very entrepreneurial family going back all the way. My great grandfather came over as an immigrant, started his own business, my grandfather, and it just went through our entire family. So I grew up surrounded by entrepreneurship and seeing the lifestyle it’s able to provide and the opportunities it had. And like, I think most of your listeners, when I graduated university, I read the four hour workweek and I started to look at how I could create a business or what I could do. I made so many mistakes with so many side hustles and I bounced around. I tried the network marketing route a few different times. I even sold makeup. I had a blog for hunting and fishing that I wanted to figure out now this was really pre WordPress and pre Shopify. So, figuring out how to create a business and sell products online, it was just too early. I had a failed t-shirt company. So, I had this background and all these odd experiences that I was doing along with building my career. Now, the cool thing was a lot of those experiences in doing these odd experiments in the background, added so much value to what I was doing, that I was able to accelerate my career probably twice as fast. And then I started to realize after one of the companies I was working for went bankrupt and wiped out all of my commission, which of course I had already spent. I had to then figure out like, okay, well, I don’t want to be the victim of somebody else’s circumstance ever again. So, I started to try to figure out how can I take this little agency I’d built, which like most marketers, they start an agency by accident. I don’t know any sane person who would do it intentionally. I then figured out, okay, like I want to figure out how to grow this. So, I plotted a path to go get jobs where I could learn from the best of the best and then figure out how can I then transform this knowledge and grow my agency in tandem to the point where it made enough money, that it could create a better lifestyle. So, I ended up building two different agencies along the way. I recently just acquired another e-commerce company, not in the t-shirt space this time, this one’s in the hardware space. Because we’re going through a little bit of a building and renovation boom, but that’s pretty much it in a nutshell. And then, I started a podcast to kind of teach what I’ve learned and also learn from others who are way ahead of me and that led to the book deal. And what I’d put in the book is just a simple blueprint of something I wish I knew earlier. And it, I can promise you this, it’s not a four hour workweek. It’s the truth of what building a business is. And it is hard.
Tim Jordan: Yeah. I couldn’t agree more. And it’s, you’ve said so much there that I wish we had time to unpack and dive into deeper. But I think that what you said about not wanting to rely on somebody else for your income resonates probably with everybody listening, whether you that are listening are completely independent yourself, or you’re still working a nine to five job. And you’re looking for a side hustle. That was always the case for me was, there’s advantages to having a normal paycheck there’s advantages to working with big company. I still work with some big companies that I’m specifically on their payroll, but knowing that I have flexibility and I have freedom, and if something doesn’t work out based on someone else’s decisions, it’s not going to affect me. I told someone the other day they were asking like, well, what’s it like to work for yourself? I said, well, it’s terrifying for one, but two, if I have to be fired, like I know what’s coming, like I’m going to have to fire myself. And it will have been probably due to a mistake that I made or a poor business decision that I made, like it’s on me, but at least I’m in control of that for the most part. Right. And I think that this idea of not having to rely on other people or businesses for income is especially strong in this day and age, because there were so many businesses that were heavily affected by the COVID pandemic. And as people are thinking, there may be some sort of global slowdown in the economy. We look back at 2008, 2009, what that did for jobs. There were a lot of people that when the housing market collapsed and all that, like they’re thinking ahead, Hey, if things get worse in the next year as a rebound from this pandemic, what do we do? So this is all very, very important stuff. And if you’re listening to this, you’ve probably have some entrepreneurial grain in your heart and understanding this stuff that Doug’s going to share with us today is going to be super, super important because as Doug said, the five hour work week or the four hour workweek is a bunch of crap. There’s no such thing. Another great book that I always tell people to read is called built to sell, built to sell is an amazing book, talking about how to set your business up, where you can walk away from it if you need to. But that book is very clear in the fact that Hey, the first several years usually is a grind. It’s not a four hour work week. It’s like a 40 hour work day, is what Doug just said. So, I think this is all really, really important. But the problem with that demand for massive amounts of work is that it’s exhausting. I’ve got kids, I’ve got a family, I’ve got multiple businesses, I’ve got the podcast, I’ve got soccer to go to. I’ve got friends to hang out with, I’ve got the lawn to cut. Right? So, what I want to talk about specifically today, Doug is how you overcome some of that exhaustion and how you overcome some of that lack of resources and maybe spreading ourselves too thin. And I think that’s going to be a perfect segue into what you have to share with us today, which is that passion is very important to overcome all of that.
Doug Foley: Absolutely. You said so many great things there. I think right now is the perfect storm for so many people. And we’ve never had a time where the boundaries have been pushed so far that people can work from home. So, you don’t have the commute for most people anymore. You have some flexibility to hone your expertise, but like you mentioned, building any type of business take serious time and effort. And in a lot of like, I think the entrepreneurial curse in me is I would tend to take on too many of those things. So, I was having so many different side hustles on the go that it would consume me. So it did, it literally felt like my hour, like a day was 40 hours long and I just couldn’t get everything done to the point it almost broke me. So I had to make a conscious decision to do less and figure out how I could produce more by honing things in. And a lot of what the book is about is how I went through that process to make very smart decisions about defining the things I was most passionate about. And then honing that into a business that actually could provide value to people that would be willing to pay for the service. And when you can get that intersection between the things you’re most passionate about what the world needs and what they’re willing to pay for, that’s the cornerstone of a real business. And the biggest mistake when I first started that first project was I tried to pick my hobby instead of my passion. I had a blog called the ultimate outdoorsman where I was just chronicling things. I was doing hunting, fishing. I was trying to become an influencer before influencing was really a thing. And this was like pre Facebook pages. pre-Instagram, there’s basically Twitter in the old version of Facebook when they actually showed your friends and the pictures you do. But what happened? We started to get into winter and I live in Canada. So I mean, there’s not a whole lot to do in terms of fishing.
Tim Jordan: You hunker down in Canada.
Doug Foley: Yeah. You’re in survival mode. You’re like, you’re trying to live. So, I was really stressed. I was like, well, I need content boost I was like, yeah, I can go ice fishing, but the legs aren’t frozen yet. So it’s kind of stuck. And it started to feel like this weight. I was like, and I started to realize that I hunt and fish and play golf because that’s what I love to do. That’s where I relax. It doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a good business. So, I started to look a little deeper and go back into the things I actually did. I started to look at books I read and started to look at what, like what blogs was I reading. I was more invested in entrepreneurship and marketing and understand how to grow businesses than I ever really was a fishing. So, I started realizing my expertise and knowledge set and the thing I actually could provide value that people really wanted to pay for was how to grow their business. What could they do in marketing? And I started to be able to apply all of these things I had done in creating an e-commerce company and having a fail like, Hey guys, here’s the mistakes I made. Here’s what I shouldn’t have done and be able to transfer that knowledge. And then once I realized that that’s when I started to scan my agency, because I had a bigger passion for growing a company than I ever did for hunting or fishing. And the biggest change was because I can create this business that provides income and time freedom, which is kind of the cornerstone of the four-hour workweek that then enabled me and gave me the means to do more hunting, fishing, and playing more golf. And that’s where the blueprint really emerged from was how can you actually find your true passion to build the lifestyle business so you can do more of the things you love? Whether that’s taking trips with your family, hunting, fishing, golfing, whatever that is, the business is the vehicle that enables that to happen.
Tim Jordan: All right. So that was a lot. And I’m sitting here thinking questions when you started talking. And I was a little bit confused at first because you were basically saying that your hobby is not your passion, right. Or maybe inversely, your passion is not your hobby. Right. And I’m thinking, well, those are so associated because what your hobby be something you’re passionate about. But I think that it’s making more sense to me. What you’re saying now is that your passion is not necessarily your hobby. Your passion is to have, or our passion is to be able to give ourselves the freedom to have our hobbies or have our time or something like that. So our passion is separated from our hobby and it’s more of a tool that will allow us to be able to do other things or am I completely off?
Doug Foley: Yeah, no, it’s very clear. You’re going down the right track. And I’ll give you this example. It goes back with the original theme you mentioned of how hard it is to build a business. If you have something like for me, let’s say it’s going fishing. If that becomes my job or becomes my side hustle, I now have nothing to relax. I lose the motivation to recharge. So finding the actual things you’re really passionate about and the thing that you can add value to a marketplace. And I would combine that with something you’ve developed an expertise in, for some people, they may be able to do that and get that connection between like, Hey, I know a one person interviewed April Vokey, for example, she’s figured out how to merge those two things and create a platform around fishing. That’s the thing. She loves, got a package she lives and dies it or lives and breathes it every day. But for most people they’ll have the thing they do to relax or recharge, but there’s something deeper and it’s, I would connect it more towards where their expertise lies. And the reason why I say that is you need to be able to connect to that thing, to have the stamina, to survive the really, really tough days. And when you connect your passion and your expertise together, you can really add value to a marketplace and differentiate yourself to the point where you become that expert, that influencer and people are just dying to buy your products or your service.
Tim Jordan: So it sounds like what you’re saying. And now this makes more sense to me, if I’m right, is that people confuse their passion with their hobbies, right? So me, myself, I’m a hypothetical guy now, right? I have this deep seated passion to start my own business. And it’s easy when I’m thinking about starting my business to look at well, what am I good at? What do I like to do? And immediately look at my hobby and think, well, that’s it like my passion to have a business has to be related to this other thing that I’m passionate about in life, which is a hobby, right? So I guess what you’re saying, correct me if I’m wrong is that we make this mistake. There’s this fallacy of assuming that our passion and our hobby are the same things or that our hobbies are the things that we love to do have to be related to our passion. But what you’re saying is the passion is deeper. So, the passion is to build a business, right? And if we look past our hobby and think, well, Hey, maybe my hobby is not the way to build a business. That’s not going to work, but our passion can be things like networking, building relationships, selling, marketing, logistics, like all of those things. So, they don’t have to be related. Our passion can just be something that will allow us to fulfill our lives in other ways that we want to. And actually you’re even saying, there’s an argument to keep those things separate. Otherwise there’s never a day off. Is that right?
Doug Foley: A hundred percent. You just said the magic words fulfillment. Your passion will often align with fulfillment, right? Like catching big fish is really fun. You’re hitting really good golf shots, really rewarding, but once that’s done, it’s over, like that feeling leaves you. It’s temporary happiness. But when you find that thing you do that lights you up inside and gives you that true lasting feeling of happiness, that’s fulfillment. So for me, when I get a text back from a client or somebody that we worked with in a coaching program, and they say to us like, listen, I just closed my first customer. That gives me a massive sense of fulfillment. Like, that’s the true rewarding. And that’s where I started to realize that’s where my passion lied in growing businesses is because I had that sense, that massive sense of fulfillment. And the thing is that recharged my batteries faster than anything else, knowing that you were making an impact and helping others. That made it easier to survive those 15 hour days when grinding it out. Or when I was first starting working late into the night after working my full-time job.
Tim Jordan: This makes so much sense to me. And I’ll admit a lot of the podcast guests that I have on will reiterate something that I already believed, or I knew to be true, but this is like very eye-opening to me as well, because I oftentimes find myself doing this myself. Now, I’ve got coaching students in my Amazon coaching group that want to start an Amazon business and immediately look to their hobby. And I tell them, I’m like, no, don’t do that. Like if you’re really into cats, like you might not find a good product for cats, but you might find a really cool product that’s related to woodworking. So, go to the woodworking, even though you’re passionate about cats, right? Like opportunities. But I find myself screwing up all the time and especially looking in the past by confusing the things I like to do with the things that I’m good at and should be passionate about. So this is really, really refreshing. So for myself, for the listeners, whether they’re experienced business owners, whether they’re just getting started, my suspicion throwing you a softball here, looking at your book there in the background is that you have a blueprint that you can share with us on how to find that passion. So, for the rest of the episode, that’s what I’d like to do. And I know you can’t go too deep. And for those of you that are listening, shameless shout out, go buy Doug’s book, Breakout Blueprint, which you can get probably anywhere right now, right. Find anywhere. But give us the cheat sheet right now and go ahead and start giving us at least the high level blueprint of how we determine what our passion should be and how to turn that into a business.
Doug Foley: There’s a couple of infographics in the book. But I’ll break them down real simply. The first one is just taking a look, an introspective look at your life. Take a look at the books you read and trying to figure out like, what are the books you actually enjoy? Now in this instance, if it’s business-related, well take a look at the non-fiction books you look at. Next, just figure out what you get caught up at the water cooler, pre COVID when we actually went to work, what are you talking to people about? If you overhear something, what do you have that creative impulse to jump in and be like, no, I know how to do, like, I can help you with that. I really know my stuff in this area. The thing that wants to get you out of your chair to go talk to people, because you know so much about that subject and you know you can help, especially if you’re an introvert and you feel that feeling like you want to go talk to a stranger cause you think you can help them. That’s a really good sign of passion because it’s triggering an emotional response from you. The other one is start to figure out, and this is a really quick tip that anybody can do after listening to this podcast. Text 10 of your friends and ask them, what is the one skill you think I have that the world would value and be willing to pay me for. Now, I have to give a hat tip to Keith Ferrazzi. I heard him give this piece of advice on inside quest and it’s something I’ve done a few times and I’ll never forget the first time that I did that exercise and reached out to my friends said, Hey, I’m just trying to exercise. Just bear with me. What’s that one skill you think the world would value and pay me for? And the funny thing was three of the people that replied all said the exact same thing. They said communications, marketing, coaching. One person in particular is like, I’m shocked you don’t own a marketing agency yet. It was almost like they were predicting the future. Now that sort of validated a skill set. So, I kind of have been down a path. I looked at those other things that were going on in my life. I looked at some of the, my past and connecting those two things and understanding the value really helped give me the clear picture of what I was passionate about and then start to get the framework of the business I was going to create.
Tim Jordan: I actually just wrote that down. And I’m even making a note in my phone to do this because that is such good information. All right. So, ask other people because sometimes we’re not our own best judges of our own character, right? And sometimes we get caught up in the wait. So, ask other people then what? Walk us to the next steps in this blueprint.
Doug Foley: The next step is to reach out to somebody. So, you’ve got this feedback. You kind of have an idea of the side hustle you want to create. You know your passion, the next step is taken action. And that’s why it’s in the subtitle of the book. So, the blueprint is actually really simple is to find your passion, take action and go build something. Build that lifestyle business, build that e-commerce company. When you have an idea, this is where most people go wrong. They will reach out. They will start creating a website, building a brand, getting their logo. They go through all this work before even validating whether or not they have a customer. So, once people have a rough idea of what they think this thing should be, very similar to how we reach out to those people do identify the passion. We tell them, find a list of 10 to 15 people who you respect, probably throw some who might be a customer and just reach out to them and simply ask, Hey, I’m launching this product. You are an ideal customer. But before I go through the work of building the e-commerce customer, I want to see if this is something you’d be interested in purchasing online. Now in the service sector, you would just modify that to say, Hey, I’m thinking of launching an agency to help X people get new customers. You’re an ideal prospect, but I just wanted to get your opinion on the business idea. You’ll be shocked in those first 10 people. And we’ve had people do this numerous times, the fastest someone has done this. They sent a text to their customer. They had a customer 23 minutes later paid in full. So, before you go through the work of false starting and just doing all this work, you’ll be able to validate the idea. No, am I heading down the right path? And once you have a paying customer, you have a business. But until then, all you have is an idea.
Tim Jordan: And that’s one thing I see people doing all the time too, is without validating, they just invest so much, whether it’s money, whether it’s time, whether it’s effort, brain power, emotion into this thing that is never going to work. And they don’t know that, but, and that’s discouraging too, because they might be on the cusp of something great. But because they over-invested and they over committed into a failed idea initially, they get discouraged. I think, well, I suck at business. I’m never going to be able to achieve this or succeed or yada yada yada. Right. So I think you’re absolutely right. It goes back to that phrase that my grandpa used to tell me all the time measure twice cut once. Right. And it allows us to pivot, allows us to narrow things in closer, but it also saves us from this emotional heartache of, well, I put all the effort into this and it wasn’t good. So, I think it’s a valid point.
Doug Foley: And that’s to be honest, that’s where it kind of comes full circles into not doing things that are in your hobby. If you built a business around that one thing you love to do and that fails, well, guess what you just ruined.
Tim Jordan: Good point.
Doug Foley: Right? Like, and I’m not saying like, there are some people who can marry the two and do very, very well. But for most people, like there is that disconnect and trying to figure out how to create a business that enables more freedom and enables the time and income to do what you really love is where the real value in entrepreneurship has come from. And there are often adjacencies in there and you’ll see it. I mean, honestly, if you just look at your bookshelf, I mean, you can’t quite see these behind me. I don’t have an non-fiction book behind me. Every book that’s on my bookshelf is either something to do with business or entrepreneurship or mindset. That’s the core. And when I realized that it’s like, wow, like I don’t, I think I have one golf book. It’s two golf books on my shelf behind me. And one about fishing.
Tim Jordan: Yeah. You’re absolutely right. And I’m not looking up here. I’m looking over at my main bookshelf where I’ve got – you’re right. Everything is about business relationships, mindset. And now I’m thinking about like, when I walk into a bookstore, cause sometimes I just like waste time. I go in a bookstore and get a coffee and I always go straight to the business or self-help section. And I poke in there and I usually buy a bunch of books. It’s going to take me forever to read, or maybe won’t ever read, but that’s what I do. So yeah, I think that’s good. And of course, those of you that don’t ever walk into bookstores, don’t you already mentioned this before, but what blogs are you reading? What podcasts you subscribe to? What Kindle books, your Amazon Kindle books, you downloading, because they will probably point you to your true passion as it – that’s good indicator.
Doug Foley: The podcast episodes that you’ve saved as a good one or feels like some of the ones you come back to, YouTube videos that catch your attention, the whole thing. And the reason we just gave these broad things is the whole point is just become more self-aware. Just pay attention to what has your attention and then figure out what gives you the positive emotion. How do you get that gut response of like, Oh, I really want to know more about that. Or like, I know I can change the course of someone’s life because I’ve doubled down and crude so much knowledge in this area. That is sign of a true passion.
Tim Jordan: Now, once we find our passion, how do we actually decide if it’s going to be a good business, not if we can sell it, which you’ve already talked about, but how do we then decide, Hey, this is actually a good idea. This is a bad idea?
Doug Foley: So, that’s where that framework comes in of reaching out and getting that first customer. But after you get that first customer, the most important thing to do is just to keep going, get the second customer and learn. And this is the biggest mistake I see everybody make. They try to design a perfect business. The single best thing you can do, no matter what stage you’re at in your business is to continue to take action. And I’ll give the example of building momentum. And this is the only reason companies get to massive scale. It takes so much effort. If you look at a locomotive, like to get the wheels on a locomotive to turn one, time takes a massive amount of effort, energy, but the second one takes half as much, the third half again. And once a train’s going and pointed in the right direction, it’s almost unstoppable. And I see so many people, they take their foot off the gas, they get a few sales and they’re like, ah, you know what? Things are okay. They’re good. It’s the most important time is when you feel overloaded is to keep going, keep taking action. Because the business you design on day one is going to be very different at day 30. It’s going to be completely different at day 90, in three years from now, that business is going to evolve into something completely different, a really good friend of mine. He runs a trade show business, and you can imagine with COVID what that business looks like. So, he and I have been talking almost daily about pivoting and creating a marketing agents cause he built that company to something massive. And it wasn’t just the fact that he was in a good time and he was good at what he does. He actually dove into understanding how businesses grow. So, the knowledge that he has accrued, he can now pivot and do more consulting. He can now generate a new revenue stream to help bridge the gap until trade shows are back. But that comes from that self-awareness of taking the time to look at. I built this thing, but how did I build it to this point? What was it in this set that helped me get here? So the next step, the short answer to your question, what do you do after you identify it, is take action immediately. Don’t get stuck in going to educate, find a customer, find a second customer, and then learn from their success and what you did well and build from there.
Tim Jordan: All right. So, I’m going to ask you a really hard question. And this is one that I struggle with in action. And also just philosophically, you’re using the example of a train and I get that. I love the example of a train track. Even if you’re on the right track, if you’re not moving, you’re not getting anywhere. Right. So, yes. Take action. Keep going, keep going. And I understand your analogy about the train, like you to grind. You have to push, it’s going to seem extremely slow, but keep going. So you make the move, but then you immediately followed that up with sometimes you have to pivot and that’s been hard for me. It’s funny. I used to work with this. We’ll call him a ditch. Right? When I was a firefighter and one day he asked, we’re just, we’re sitting in the fire hall and he says, how do they steer a train? We all looked at this guy, like, that is the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard? Right? Like, of course you don’t steer a train, but going back to this analogy, at what point do we stop trying to turn the wheels on the locomotive and keep pushing it towards this singular tracks, like direction. Because you can’t steer a train. Right? And do we pivot? And that’s always been tough for me because I understand both principles. Sometimes you have to pivot, but sometimes you just have to keep working and moving down that track till it gains momentum. But at what point do we deviate and jump onto a different track?
Doug Foley: So, the biggest thing is defining your why. So, one of the first exercises on the book is actually I don’t even get into business. The whole first section talks about your lifestyle design. What do you want life to look like? Who do you want to help? And what is the impact you’re going to make in those lives? When I got clear about that and decided my goal is going to be to help a thousand entrepreneurs build a lifestyle business by 2023, that goalpost always held our North star or whatever you want to call it, always helped me frame the decisions I was going to make. And it made it easier to determine, do I need to pivot? Do I need to change directions? Am I getting pulled further away from that? Or am I still headed down the same track? When you have alignment with your passion and you have that clear direction and purpose that you want to go, it makes it easier to make decisions. And that’s a hard part for most people. One, I mean, as entrepreneurs, I’ll be honest. We have decision fatigue. It’s exhausting. We’re constantly making micro decisions day in, day out. So, when it comes time to make a major one, I find more often than not. We just do nothing because we’re exhausted. But when I got really clear about who I was helping, where I wanted to go, it made it easier for me to make decisions. That’s why I put the podcast on hold because I knew my greatest impact would come from writing a book and being on these. So, it meant I had to slow these down, but it wasn’t until I almost ruined my marriage in life because I bill all these other traps, like I sent you just built a whole bunch of part-time jobs for myself that like, it almost broke me to the point where I was like, I have to do this differently. So, that’s why the first section of the book goes into, what do you want life to look like? And most people, they do the dream boards, the goal boards of like living on an Island, working the actual four-hour week, which isn’t real. It was when I realized like have a normal life to live, we’ve got to pick up our kids still, but outside of these responsibilities, what do we really want life to look like? And is the business decision making, guiding me down that path or taking me further away from it. Now when you first start and yeah, when you first start, it might not be realistic. You know you have to build this thing. So it’s going to take more time, but if it’s been two, three years and you’re not moving closer to what you want that ideal life to look like, you probably should look at some other options or changing the model, do something different.
Tim Jordan: So, my question, I think was a false question cause I was thinking too shallowly, right? So, you’re talking about the train and the momentum and get going. And I’m thinking that that train track is a specific business. That’s not what you’re saying. You’re saying that train was your path to that passion to fulfillment. All right. Again, mind blown. I got it now. So, the different businesses and that the ability to pivot is just the fuel that we’re putting into the engine of the locomotive. We’re just, we might be changing the methods in which we get that train rolling, but the train and the train track is not pointing towards the success of an individual business. The train track is pointing towards that ultimate goal of fulfillment in our lives, which we will frequently do with businesses. So, I was thinking there were parallel. No they’re in line. The businesses are the fuel that gets the train moving, but the track should be pointed at one direction. It just might take a while to get there.
Doug Foley: Yeah.
Tim Jordan: Did I say that correctly?
Doug Foley: You might know and just really want to push the train analogy. You might lose some of the things that are behind the locomotive.
Tim Jordan: That’s true.
Doug Foley: You get to actually like the guys, you get to steer the train, you get to determine when which times you’re going to ease off the track and come back, what things you’re going to add to it. But businesses are just part of the vehicle, right? They are just part of what generates the income to do other things. And that’s why I gave the example of like making some of those pivots with the trade show business. The more you do in life. This is probably the thing I learned from doing so many odd things, like so many odd businesses and being involved in different projects every time you’re adding to what you know, like you are building expertise. So, if you start with an e-commerce business, you’re going to acquire skillsets that are valuable. You’re going to have probably learn some pieces about technology. Some things about distribution, logistics, ads, creative, those are all valuable. And the one thing I see so many people get stuck, especially when it comes starting as like, well, my idea’s not good enough. I don’t know enough. The thing is if you have an e-commerce business and you’ve sold product and you have customers, you know a lot more than the person that today, that’s sitting at home with idea, trying to figure out how do I get started. So, you can start to diversify. Your knowledge will always be one of your greatest assets. It’s how and who you apply that knowledge to is where you really start to scale.
Tim Jordan: Amazing. Such good advice. These podcasts are fun because I get to learn so much on so many of them too. And it’s also a tool that I use to analyze like what I’m doing. A lot of times people, if you’re watching on YouTube to the video, I make notes. Those are usually something I go put in my organizational system for myself and really the big takeaway that I’ve got from this today. And I’m sure it’s the takeaway that you wanted to portray is that the ultimate fuel for our lives should be that passion, not the success of this business and that we sometimes get clouded judgment thinking that our hobby has to be our passion and that – what we want to do day in and day out on our off time is what we should be doing in our business. And there is no such thing as a four hour workweek. Sometimes we have to separate all that out and we have to work extremely hard, put in a lot of effort to reach that final goal. But that goal may be completely disconnected from the individual, not disconnected, but different than the individual units that you’re using to get to that goal. Was that all a pretty good summary?
Doug Foley: One hundred percent. And I’ll be honest with you. I just modeled it after some of the biggest entrepreneurs I know. Take a look into my favorite entrepreneur who I probably observed this from was Arnold Palmer. He knew like the game of golf was the thing that he was great at. But then he went and built businesses that were adjacent to it. He was a true entrepreneur and in many of the businesses he owned, like he created a sports agency, one of the largest still in existence today, they hold the contracts for Michael Jordan, LeBron James, you name it. But he knew that that was going to enable him well past the game of golf when he stopped playing.
Tim Jordan: Absolutely. Absolutely good advice here. So if people wanted to hear more about your thoughts, your philosophy, this blueprint, obviously go buy your book, Breakout Blueprint, but how else can they find you online?
Doug Foley: Best thing to do is just follow me on social it’s @Douglasjfoley, Foley, on all of the social channels.
Tim Jordan: Gotcha. Perfect. So, as we wrap up any last 10-second words of wisdom or words of advice that you’d like to leave?
Doug Foley: The biggest one is go find your passion, take action, and go build your lifestyle.
Tim Jordan: Awesome. You make it sound so easy.
Doug Foley: That’s the cool. Thanks so much.
Tim Jordan: All right. Thanks for being on. Thank you all for listening. I say it all the time, but I’m going to ask it again. If you guys found any value in this, make sure to leave us a review on whatever podcast platform you’re listening to. Go check out Doug’s, social media content, follow him where he’s at and maybe your timeline. We’ll be blessed with a piece of wisdom or something he puts out in the future. And then if you’re watching this on YouTube, make sure to thumbs up and make sure to share and like this across whatever platform that you’re using. If you found value in this, thank you guys for being on. We’ll see you on the next episode.