greater success

Dr. Ryan Gottfredson – Unlocking Greater Success – How We Can Move From a Fixed Mindset to One of Growth (AoL 178)

When we have the discussion about achievement and having greater success, many times we go straight to tactics and tools as the answer. Or, if we know better, maybe we’ll take a look at our vision and mission and see if it needs to be tweaked a bit.

One thing we often skip over, however, is our mindset. As we’ve been learning in the show recently, mindsets can be seen as the lenses we see the world in. And there’s a lot of talk about going from negative mindsets to more positive alternatives.

Most of the time, though, this has been a bit of nebulous concept. Especially, when we don’t know where we’re currently at and how we can improve from there.

However, in this session, our goal is to bring that conversation down to reality a bit.

Our guest, Dr. Ryan Gottfredson, has spent over five years looking at the knowledge and data on what it means to go from good to great when it comes to mindsets. And what he’s found is that mindsets can actually be quantifiable.

Through his assessment and book, Success Mindsets, we have a way to find out where we’re at in our positive and negative mindsets and have a plan to move all our

If you’ve been searching for an assessment to help you get more clarity on where you should go in your self development journey, this is a great place to start.



  • How did Ryan end up in the Organizational Behavior field and later looking at mindsets? 10:06
  • Why does he look at mindsets versus personalities? 13:44
  • What are the four opposing mindsets that we can encounter in the world? 16:57
  • How do the results of Gallup’s annual poll on leadership tie into Ryan’s research? 21:42
  • How do we as leaders become the better version of ourselves so we can inspire our followers to be their best? 24:04
  • Is there a way to make sure we don’t fall into self protective stress and keep in a growth mindset? 26:03
  • What exercises can someone do to keep them in a growth mindset? 29:09
  • Does Ryan feel that his new growth mindset is his new default setting or will he have to continue to reinforce it over time? 32:50
  • What role does a coach play in helping someone improve their mindset? 35:37
  • What benefits can someone expect from reading Ryan’s book “Success Mindsets“? 36:43
  • When it comes to the word agile, what does it mean at the individual level? 38:16
  • What has Ryan been doing as part of his pandemic pivot? 41:58
  • How infectious are mindsets when it comes to other people? 43:43
  • What are Ryan’s top 3 favorite books he gifts or tells others about? 45:24
  • When you become overwhelmed or unfocused, what does he do? 46:49
  • If he were to run a business or do a job for a day that he’s currently not, what would it be? 47:51
  • What’s the smallest decision Ryan’s made that’s had the greatest impact on his life? 48:31
  • How can someone be a difference maker in their community? 49:39


Ryan Online: Website, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, YouTube
Cohost: Andy Dix
Powered By: Kennected (Save $500 on your onboarding call by using this link!)
Andy’s Interview of Mel McMahon
AoL Interview with Chris Tuff
Viktor Frankl – Man’s Search for Meaning
5 Minute Journal App
Bonds that Make Us Free – Terry Warner
Creativity Inc – Ed Catmull
High Performance Habits – Brendon Burchard

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The Power of the Collective Mindset Report

Introduction to the Digital Mindset Coach

Ryan is Interviewed by Sagi Shrieber

Ryan’s Interview with TJ Hoisington

Thanks for Listening!

Thanks so much for joining us again this week. Have some feedback you’d like to share? Leave a note in the comment section below!

If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the top of the post.

Also, please leave an honest review for The AoL Podcast on iTunes! Ratings and reviews are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated! They do matter in the rankings of the show, and we read each and every one of them.

If you have any questions feel free to email them over via the email mentioned in the show or by our contact form.

And finally, don’t forget to subscribe to the show on CastboxiTunesStitcherPodBean, and/or Google Play Music. It’s absolutely free to do so.

A huge thank-you to you guys for joining us!


getting ahead

Greg S. Reid – Ok, Now What? Tips For Getting Ahead in Life and Business After the Pandemic (AoL 175)

As the world heads back to a post pandemic normal, more people find themselves wondering about getting ahead of the new status quo.

As we move forward, once again many people are realizing (again) the future is uncertain. Just like security was a big concern after 9/11, corporate wellness is going to be a huge topic moving forward. Corporations, being the relatively static entities they are, prefer to have all their ducks in a row. The more predictable the future is, the better they look to their investors.

So one would think that part of the new status quo is going to be maintaining a healthy workplace and workforce. Is a business capable of properly reacting to potential future waves of this (and other) diseases?

For us creative entrepreneur types, we know that with uncertainty comes big opportunity. So that’s why in the last couple of months, my business partners and I have been working on starting a wellness consulting business.

If the corporations want to go digging for gold ( in wellness), then we’re more than happy to help them find the tools they need.

Even if you don’t have the expertise to capitalize directly on the new status quo, there will be more than enough room for to indirectly capitalize on it.

For example, perhaps you’re an artist. Is there a way for you to use the technology everyone has become accustomed to using to get more people around your work? (Yes, virtual art shows…)

As we speak with this session’s guest, Greg Reid, Veronica and I learn a little bit about the mindset he’s used in getting ahead himself – now and in the future.

If you’ve not heard from Greg before, then today might be one of those days which changes the trajectory of those that follow.



  • How did Greg get in a position where he was able to capitalize on opportunities when they came along? 8:50
  • What has having connections done for Greg? How can someone start getting ahead by building strategic connections? 17:46
  • How does he stay relevant to all the people who’s in the Switchboard? 21:48
  • From Greg’s perspective, why is good etiquette and preparedness so important to success? 24:07
  • What behaviors should people work on if they’re serious about building their own dream or an empire? 27:13
  • What’s Greg excited for in 2020? 35:23
  • Who are his current top 3 influencers who have helped him get to where he’s at today? 38:54
  • What gift does he like giving others? 39:57
  • How can someone tell the difference between a Credible Source vs someone who’s trying to fake it until they make it? 42:18
  • What’s advice out there is a disservice to youth? 43:21
  • What would be found in the “Guide to Being a Creative” handbook? 44:36
  • According to Greg, what’s it mean to live a life of Abundance? 46:07


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Greg Shares the Success Equation

Greg’s Personal Library

Jeff Binder’s Presentation at Secret Knock

Wake Up and Crush It Teaser

Thanks for Listening!

Thanks so much for joining us again this week. Have some feedback you’d like to share? Leave a note in the comment section below!

If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the top of the post.

Also, please leave an honest review for The AoL Podcast on iTunes! Ratings and reviews are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated! They do matter in the rankings of the show, and we read each and every one of them.

If you have any questions feel free to email them over via the email mentioned in the show or by our contact form.

And finally, don’t forget to subscribe to the show on CastboxiTunesStitcherPodBean, and/or Google Play Music. It’s absolutely free to do so.

A huge thank-you to you guys for joining us!


practicing mindfulness

Kelly DiNardo – Practicing Mindfulness in an Uncertain World: What Yoga can Teach Us about the Next New Economy with Kelly DiNardo (AoL 173)

In a an usual time like we’re going through right now, it’s easy to be hyper responsive to everything that’s going on around us. Practicing mindfulness is probably the last thing many folks are thinking about. In fact, I’d go on to say that many people are doing the opposite – they’re in a constant state of panic. They’re still focused on what we’ve been through, not where the world is going.

But can you blame them? Many who were hanging on a thread from their day job have found themselves in a lot of hurt right now. Even small business owners and farmers find themselves having to do things they never thought they’d have to.

What I’ve personally found out is this. If we can manage our stress in stressful times, then new solutions and new ways of looking at the world come more readily. We have to give ourselves room to find our own pandemic pivot. (Plus it always seems to me that survivors in zombie movies tend to see what the masses are doing, and do the opposite!)

In this conversation with Kelly DiNardo, we learn about a time where she herself had to pivot earlier in her career. While it wasn’t convenient at the time, it sure did prep her for future times of adversity.



  • What was Kelly’s “A-ha!” moments when it came to practicing mindfulness? 11:22
  • What was the process like for Kelly in putting together her Yoga business? 17:37
  • How does she find time to manage her two completely different businesses? 22:13
  • Based on how she runs her business, what opportunities has she seen to grow and expand her business? 26:54
  • What are her thoughts when it comes to achievement vs feeling shut in and scared during the pandemic? 33:13
  • Even though we’re dealing with the pandemic in 2020, what is Kelly still excited for this year? 39:24
  • What are Kelly’s top 3 influential podcasts she listens to? 41:23
  • In the last few years, is there something specific she’s learned to say no to? 42:35
  • Is there an issue more people should be talking about right now, yet hardly anyone is with the pandemic? 43:16
  • What’s a tip for traveling? 44:42
  • How can someone be a difference maker in their community? 48:02


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Kelly and Amy with Rosie Acosta on Practicing Mindfulness

Shannon Crow interviews Kelly on the Connected Yoga Teacher

Fit Bottomed Girls Podcast interview of Kelly and Amy

Sarah Boxx interviews Kelly on the No Labels, No Limits Show

Thanks for Listening!

Thanks so much for joining us again this week. Have some feedback you’d like to share? Leave a note in the comment section below!

If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the top of the post.

Also, please leave an honest review for The AoL Podcast on iTunes! Ratings and reviews are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated! They do matter in the rankings of the show, and we read each and every one of them.

If you have any questions feel free to email them over via the email mentioned in the show or by our contact form.

And finally, don’t forget to subscribe to the show on CastboxiTunesStitcherPodBean, and/or Google Play Music. It’s absolutely free to do so.

A huge thank-you to you guys for joining us!


lessons learned in life

10 BIG Lessons Learned in Life Since Graduating College

It’s funny, but sometimes I hear myself in the podcast saying phrases like “back in college…” or “back in grad school…” like it was the height of my education. I play it as if I haven’t learned much since then. But, when I think about it, I wouldn’t trade the experiences and knowledge I’ve gained since then for anything. When it comes to lessons learned in life, there’s a few things I can think of.

If anything, I’ve picked up quite a bit more wisdom in the last ten years. Much more than I had when I was “formally” trained. In this post, I’ll share some of the things I’ve learned along the way that might be impossible to learn in school.

College is Not For Everyone

When I was growing up, the expectation for me was that I would go to college. There wasn’t a question about it. Both of my parents had gone and, on top of that, they both had Masters degrees. So my bar was set. (Thankfully I’ve always loved learning and putting ideas together!)

Because of that, I figured that I might as well get a PhD and go the professor route. I saw what my mom was able to do during her summers as a teacher, so I thought if I put in a little bit more time that I’d be able to have an even longer summer!

Well, I get to grad school and that’s when my real education in life started. Not only did I learn that becoming a tenured professor is about as likely as getting struck by lightning, but there would be a lot of politics along the way. And, me being a staunch Republican at the time, I’d always be on the losing end of the battle.

At the same time, I was teaching an organizational leadership course six times a week to roughly 30 students in each class. While I was teaching the course, I started to realize that many students were checking out during class. And, while they might be present in that you could have a conversation with them, they didn’t seem to be involved in the class material.

They weren’t learning.

As a lifelong learner, I was naturally good at absorbing knowledge. So this was a little odd to me. The next course I ended up teaching was basically an Honors course, so I didn’t really have much of a repeating pattern.

Until I started teaching algebra at the junior college level.


And, wow… talk about people who wanted to be anywhere but in the classroom… most of those students were there to have better opportunities in their career. Not to learn algebra.

So I started wondering: how many classes are like this in college? Of the three courses I taught, with drastically different material, two of them had participants who were just going through the motions to pass.

It occured to me at that point that the product that colleges might be producing are people who didn’t learn much of anything during their time there. They simply learned how to play the game of memorizing material and regurgitating it for tests.

If that’s the case, what’s the point of going in the first place? If money is the end goal, there’s better choices out there to make that money than a job. Especially with the birth and growth of the Sharing Economy. You can build your own job if that’s really your thing.

Don’t Be a Victim

This one is pretty straight forward. People who place the blame on others for their place in life never really get much traction. It’s only when they take responsibility and action that they can actually start succeeding in life. When people start moving forward and getting results, others start to notice. Many times, they’re inspired by the person to take control of their own life in some way. 

Random case: I ended up seeing Bad Boys for Life recently and in the beginning of the movie, Will’s character gets shot up. It was out on the street while he was having a good time with his friends. Obviously not his fault that he gets placed in critical care in the hospital, right?

Now the rest of the movie is based on what the next decision is. Does he cower and let the rest of the police department go after whoever did the drive by? Or should he go after the perp Bad Boys style?

You wouldn’t have much of a Will Smith movie without him choosing to do something about it.

It’s one reason I’ve always been a fan of Will’s. He’s always been a great example of someone who’s made a great life out of practically nothing.

Be a Lion, Not a Lamb

Moving on from that topic, but not too far, is the conversation about becoming a leader. It’s much easier to take responsibility for your life if your locus of control is internal. If you believe that you’re in control of your world, then you’re more prone to take action when needed. If you believe that someone else is in charge of your results, then you won’t have the motivation to try and be responsible for your outcomes in life.

So, be the lion. If you want to be fed, know you need to go out and win your dinner. Don’t stop until you do. Otherwise you’ll default to being a lamb and waiting for life to happen around you.

Garbage In, Garbage Out

Our subconscious is always listening and taking in the world around us. We know this because when we turn off our active mind, our subconscious takes control. This is evident due to having dreams.

In essence, our dreams are a display of the thoughts we’ve had throughout the day.

Most people in today’s world live in a pretty negative world.  So neutral to negative thoughts are generally on the brain. It’s thoughts of “I have to do this today…” or “Man, I really need to figure out how to deal with this…” or even “What the hell is up with that dude? He can’t drive worth a damn!” They really don’t give much time to think about what’s going right in their lives. They don’t give themselves time to think positive thoughts.

That’s one of the reasons you’ll hear high performers talk about the importance of affirmations in their life.

However, affirmations don’t work for everyone. Main reason, I believe, is they’re just a part of the recipe of having a positive mindset. Setting and achieving goals, associating with other positive thinking people who are going the same direction, on top of speaking to yourself positively, helps as well. 

Be Tactful in Your Communication

Just as you should be tactful in what you say to yourself, we should need to think about the energy we’re putting out into the world. There’s a reason why the phrase “karma’s a bitch!” exists. What goes around, does in fact, come around.

Here’s the reason this phenomenon exists: people like how people make them feel. If we’re Debbie Downer all the time, that’s going to be another’s perspective of who we are. However, if we’re constantly going out of our way to add value to other people or be uplifting around them, then others will see us in a much better light.

So watch what you say to yourself as well as how you communicate to others.

Be Frugal When Possible & Invest in Your Future

I remember in the book The Millionaire Next Door, there was a lot of discussion about being frugal. Just so you don’t confuse the two, being frugal doesn’t mean being cheap. If someone is frugal, they’re simple in their spending habits. They don’t buy things to just perform the act of the transaction. Many times they do so because what they’re buying provides a solution for a current problem. And often, the solution they opt for has the best benefit-cost ratio.

That said, one thing you shouldn’t be too hesitant about is your future. Applied knowledge is power. And the more results you get from that power, the better, right? So if you find yourself rationalizing why you should go to a particular event or buying a course, then maybe you should take the plunge to do it. Just don’t put all your eggs in one basket!

Focus is Super Important

When it comes to getting anything done and doing it right, you have to have focus.

For example, when it comes to the sports world, Michael Phelps would never have gotten to win as many golds as he did in the Olympics if he didn’t work constantly on his swimming technique.

Patrick Mahomes had the ability to play baseball and football professionally. In fact, he was drafted by the Detroit Tigers way before he was drafted by the Chiefs. However, just like he did in college, he gave up baseball to play football for Kansas City.

In both of these instances, we see focus in one thing setting the person up for greatness.

Many times when entrepreneurs are starting their business, they believe that they can be anything for everyone. This is a huge mistake because most of the time, people are really looking for a specialist to do something right.

So, as a creative entrepreneur, it makes sense to stick to your lane. Sure you might have a few little different perks that sets your process apart from competitors, but for the most part, keep the main thing the main thing.

There’s Three Ways to Achieve

Society teaches us through the story of the Tortoise and the Hare that continued hard work can beat talent. This is proven time and time again in professional sports where draft picks are propped up on a pedestal but when they get into the league, they fail miserably because they don’t put in the work needed.

However, what many people don’t consider is the team of people it took for that draft pick to even be considered as high as they were.

Likewise, it takes a small coordinated army to get someone elected to public office.

So, to become great, it takes more than hard work and a specific talent. Those skills will make you a great technician. But if you want to be a difference maker, you have to learn a third skill: finding and working with people who are going the same way you are. In other words, network and partnering is the true name of the game.

Not one big name you know in the online entrepreneur space has gotten to where they’re at on their own. They’ve borrowed the audience of someone else at least once.

We all have to learn how to do that on some level to get to that next level.

We All Have a Personal Mission

I speak about this in my free guide Uncover Your Personal Mission, but life is more than just following your Passion. Sometimes you’re going to have to do things you don’t want to do (or delegate if you can!). And really, if you’re just following a Passion and not considering your Purpose, you’re acting kinda selfish!

So, do yourself a favor and do a bit of an inventory on yourself to know what Passions, Purpose, and Process are. Once you have that, you can complete the Ikigai (your sweet spot) and find your Profit.

Business is About Solving Problems for your Customer

Now, if you’ve found your sweet spot in the business world, that’s great. However, ideas are like opinions – everyone has one.

To have a successful business, you need to get good at diagnosing problems for those you see as potential customers/clients. Then, once you have that determined, you can give them a solution and check and see if they want to implement it.

If done right, this is how sales should work. It’s not about the potential client turning down the solution, service, or product itself, it’s about them not being able to see the reasoning behind them needing it to get to where they want to be.

Or as Dane Maxwell says, you need to get good at “idea extraction” and providing a solution for the problem you uncover.

Action Steps

So these are 10 things I’ve learned in the last 10 years. Some are life related, some business related. Believe me, there’s plenty of other things I could have written about, but these are some things I’ve been thinking about recently quite a bit.

As for the action steps, let’s do a bit of an exercise in affirmations. What are some things you’ve learned about since being in the real world? Feel free to share in the comments below or, if you’re the shy type, write about it in your own personal journal!!

finding your passion & purpose in life

Tommy Breedlove – Legendary By Choice: Why Finding Your Passion & Purpose in Life is the Secret to Long Term Significance (AoL 166)

I can’t tell you how many times in college I heard fellow students use the phrase “I’m going to take a nap and wait patiently for death” as a joke. And in reality, for many, life is simply something that has to be endured. However, I fully believe that finding your passion & purpose in life is a huge part of getting out of that life of quiet mediocrity.

Since college, and especially after starting this podcast, I’ve come to the realization that individuals who have this figured out have overall a lot less stress in their life. Not only that, but they usually have a higher chance of being fulfilled by the work they’re doing.

This session’s guest, Tommy Breedlove, has gone through it all. From being incarcerated early in life, to working at the C-suite level, to realizing that the more he wrote his own story, the less others controlled it. Today he helps others not only realize that fact for themselves, but helps them find their next level.

In this chat, Andy and I get the chance to learn how he made that realization for himself, how he helps other men find their own way, and some pointers we can all use to start moving the dial a little bit more today.



  • What kind of legacy does Tommy want to leave? 7:47
  • What was the defining moment which lead Tommy to his current path? 8:39
  • Can something be said to someone who has fallen into a contentment coma to help them get out? 17:35
  • What’s the current state of men in America, and why did he focus to work them specifically? 20:49
  • Is there a difference between boys, dudes, and men? 24:52
  • According to Tommy, how do you start finding your passion & purpose in life and build a life of legacy? 28:17
  • Does he have any recommendations for someone do to build a financial fortress and build a legacy? 32:12
  • What are 3 favorite books he likes to give or tell others about? 42:36
  • Is there anything he recently says no to? How did he come to that realization? 42:59
  • Who’s the most awe inspiring person he’s met and why? 43:56
  • What’s something he’d like to do in his lifetime that no one knows about? 45:09
  • What’s it mean to live a life of abundance? 45:50


Right click here and save-as to download this episode to your computer.


12 Minute Conversation with Engel Jones

Tommy on the Brandon Smith Show

Brandon Labella Interviews Tommy

Tommy via Purpose on Tap

Thanks for Listening!

Thanks so much for joining us again this week. Have some feedback you’d like to share? Leave a note in the comment section below!

If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the top of the post.

Also, please leave an honest review for The AoL Podcast on iTunes! Ratings and reviews are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated! They do matter in the rankings of the show, and we read each and every one of them.

If you have any questions feel free to email them over via the email mentioned in the show or by our contact form.

And finally, don’t forget to subscribe to the show on CastboxiTunesStitcherPodBean, and/or Google Play Music. It’s absolutely free to do so.

A huge thank-you to you guys for joining us!


passive income streams

Popular Passive Income Streams in Modern Business

Passive Income is a topic that many still struggle with today in 2019. And, I have to admit, while I understand why people aren’t too familiar with the concept, it still kind of blows my mind. Personally, I think it’s been 18 years since I first read Robert Kiyosaki’s Rich Dad, Poor Dad and his second book, Rich Dad’s Cashflow Quadrant. Since then I’ve picked up the basics of developing passive income streams and understanding how it all works. In this post, we’re going to explore the top 8 methods of developing passive income.

Yes, it’s really that simple!

I Quadrant Opportunities

If you’re familiar with Robert Kiyosaki’s work, you’ll recognize his company, Rich Dad, Poor Dad. Robert himself is a fan of all passive income opportunities, however, when he originally wrote his first book, his experience was via Real Estate Investing (REI) and Traditional Investing through Stocks, Bonds, 401k’s, Mutual Funds, etc.

Real Estate Investing (REI)

REI is probably one of the most well represented options out there. However, when most people think of REI, they believe that they can’t get in the game. In fact, I remember starting to read Robert’s book Rich Dad’s Guide to Investing when I was in college and thinking “When I get a real income when I’m out of college, this will be how I make my fortune!”

While I still haven’t gone that route, it’s definitely something I see myself eventually getting into.

If this is a track you might be interested in, I’ve had several REI success stories on the show:

Chris Prefontaine (AoL 155)

Damion Lupo (AoL 125)

Kevin Bupp (AoL 124)

Whitney Nicely (AoL 123)

Traditional Investing

Outside of REI, when most people think of passive income, they think of making money through stocks, bonds, and mutual funds. 401k’s fit in this area as well.

While this isn’t necessarily a bad topic to think about, I will say that if you do the math, it takes about $1.25M to be invested in various assets to yield a comfortable $50k+ per year income.

Thing is, most people won’t ever smell that kind of lump sum amount in their career working a day job. However, there are tactics you can use to save a little bit here and there to eventually make that work out. Fortunately, you can read material by folks like Dave Ramsey to make this more of a reality than a dream.

Also, if this is an arena you’d want to play in, I’d also recommend checking out Tony Robbins’ book Money: Master the Game

B Quadrant Opportunities

If you’re already in the S Quadrant, you should definitely look at the B Quadrant!

In the I Quadrant, we’re mainly focused on making our money work for us to make more money. However, again, not everyone has access to that seed money to get up and running. So what’s one to do if they want to get in the passive income game?

They should totally look at the B Quadrant. The B standing for Big Business or Business Systems. These terms can be used interchangeably because you can’t have a big business without harnessing the power of business systems.

What’s great about the B Quadrant is that it’s the scaled up version of the S Quadrant. The main difference being that while in the S Quadrant you’re capped by the activity you can put in yourself, in the B Quadrant you can grow your business through fractal patterns or fractals. If you’re unfamiliar with fractals, a basic example is a tree in a forest. A tree has a trunk, limbs, branches, and twigs. They all are formed using a pattern of nodes and branches. Depending on the type of tree, however, the pattern might keep going. 

Most trees have a tap root that counterbalances the tree and keeps it in the ground. When the tree is growing, a lot of energy is put into creating that tap root.

However, Giant Sequoia trees have a network of roots that support the entire forest like a mesh. Sure, a tree can grow by itself and support itself, but Sequoias, being the largest trees in existence have evolved to support each other in this network. The trees themselves act as the nodes, while the roots act as the branches. 

So simply saying when it comes to fractals, the larger the network, the more potential for growth.

Traditional “Tried and True” Opportunities

The B Quadrant isn’t anything new. In fact, you probably already know of examples of people who are successful in this quadrant.


As long as there’s been insurance, there’s been agencies. And insurance has been around a pretty long time.

When someone takes the leap from being an agent and starting their own insurance agency, then they’re taking a step into the world of the B Quadrant. Those agencies can continue to grow to a point where they train other agents and agencies. At this point they become a Field Marketing Organization (FMO). Their most basic role is to offer insurance products, services and possibly training to insurance agents or agencies.

An example of one here in Indiana is Gordon Marketing.


Using the same idea as an insurance FMO, a business can eventually grow to the point where they franchise the model of their business.

Like insurance, the idea of franchising goes way back to the Middle Ages. However, the franchising that we’re aware of today didn’t really start until after World War II.

Of course, one of the most well known franchises is McDonald’s. And luckily for us, a movie was released about the man who built the franchise. The Founder is the story of Ray Kroc and his journey to create the business that we know today.

It’s easy to see that this method of creating passive income works. There’s more franchises today than ever! In fact, there’s so many suburbs of one city resemble those of another city.

Personal Franchising

When it comes to franchising, you can do it one of two ways. The first is the more familiar route we just talked about. However, one issue with this method is that it can take quite a bit of startup capital.

Most people don’t have a spare $10k+ just sitting around.

So they participate in the age old tradition of direct sales. Direct sales is defined as “The direct personal presentation, demonstration, and sale of products and services to consumers, usually in their homes or at their jobs.” With that kind of definition, you could say that just about any kind of sales outside of a traditional store or place of business is a form of direct sales.

Many direct sales companies today allow their sales associates or Independent Business Owners to sponsor other people to do what they do. One of the oldest companies that is set up to do specifically this is Amway. In fact, the reason  Amway was created, was so that anyone could have the capability to start their own business. At the same time, they’d also have the support from those who sponsored them as well as the company itself. 

If you’d want to know more about this form of direct sales, often referred to as multi-level marketing, you can check out our friend Robert Kiyosaki has to say on the subject. Interestingly, it’s how he met his wife Kim!

Like Robert, I highly recommend checking out this path if you’re stuck in the E Quadrant and want to quickly move to the B. Or even if you’re in the S Quadrant and don’t have enough to pursue the other options we’ve talked about so far.

Here’s a couple of folks I’ve had on the show who are experts in Direct Sales:

Mark Nathan (AoL 23)

Jeff Gamble (AoL 156)

Cyndi Walter (AoL 163)

George Campbell & Jim Packard (AoL 193)


I’d be admiss if I didn’t cover the topic of licensing and what that means. Basically, it’s the sharing of Intellectual Property (IP) from one company (company A) to another (company B) in agreement that if the company B uses the company A’s IP, company A gets a commission. While it is similar to franchising, franchises differ in that they are in charge of how company B is actually ran. In licensing, while company A might have recommendations and regulations set, it’s pretty much left to company B to work out their own systems of operation.

As an owner of America Multi-Sport, I’ve had first hand experience to see how this can work out. While on the surface it might seem like a great idea since you’re skipping over some pretty hefty fees to actually make a franchise, there’s a good chance you’re going to fall behind. Since your licensees don’t have to operate to a certain standard, it leaves a lot of room for interpretation. Just with us, we’ve had a handful of licensees come and go in the last couple of years simply because they couldn’t do what we recommended to them.

However, just because it hasn’t been overly successful with us doesn’t mean it can’t be successful. The NFL got started the same way. Even though it’s had its ups and downs,  it’s celebrating 100 seasons!

Internet Powered Opportunities

Now that we’ve covered forms of opportunities that have been around 100 years or more, let’s look at a few things that have popped up in the last 20 due to the advent of the internet.

Scaled S Quadrant Work

If you’re more familiar with the podcast, you know that a number of the guests are simply people who have taken their service to the next level. They’ve found their Ikigai and have used technology to build a lifestyle that they’re proud of. Of the numerous hats I wear as an entrepreneur, one is helping people take their solopreneur business and scaling it through technology if they haven’t done so themselves. 

Of course, there’s different ways to capitalize on technology. You can become a digital nomad where the only work you do is through your laptop as you travel the world. Or you can start a brick and mortar agency that offers a service which can be executed online. Or perhaps you already have an agency and you’re up to your eyeballs in work and need help with all the work that’s coming your way.

There’s ways to do all of this. It really depends on what you want to do. Of course if you’d like help with this, shoot me an email. I’d love to help you get to the next level.

Affiliate Marketing

The internet has brought on another form of direct sales called e-Commerce or internet marketing. Today, most of us no longer go to places of business and buy something on the spot. We opt to do our shopping from the comfort of our own home.

Lots of online business owners get their start in internet marketing by pedaling other company’s products or services. Most of the reviews that you see on YouTube, have an affiliate link in their description that you can buy the product through them and they get a commission. 

In fact, Pat Flynn did pretty much this for years. However, as his platform grew, so did his need to create his own online products.

Influencer Marketing

When I first learned of Pat, I also learned of Brendon Burchard and his course called Expert’s Academy. Today I think he’s called it the Influencer Academy because more people are familiar with that term on Instagram.

The idea of Influencer Marketing is pretty straight forward. If you have an engaged audience, you have a list of potential buyers. The bigger the audience, the more potential buyers.

You make a product specifically designed for that audience, and there’s a good chance they’re going to buy from you. Why? Because of your influence on them through that engagement!

Typically speaking, those products take the form of digital products like courses and eBooks. That said, it’s not uncommon to see books, audios, and videos released by people in this arena.

Anyway, here’s the catch. It’s important that we never confuse three things. 

  • Don’t confuse your platform with your income. 
  • Don’t confuse your income with your career.

When people are getting started in the online entrepreneur space, many times they believe that they need to become an influencer way before they’re successful in making income. Problem is, you can’t really be an influencer unless you have some form of success in your career. They’re putting their platform ahead of their income.

To correct this, we need to learn how to separate the idea of these two. Sure your income will be multiplied as you become an influencer, but if you don’t have any income, you’re essentially multiplying by 0. 

So the next time you hear the phrase “become the next influencer” and think it’s a great idea, make sure that you already have a proven business based on the material that you want to help the masses with.

SaaS Platform

Finally, the last option I’ll mention because it’s the last category I’m personally familiar with is building a Software as a Service (SaaS) Platform. Now, doing this is just like building any other kind of business. You have to start small and in a well defined niche.

What I learned from Dane Maxwell (AoL 56) and his program called The Foundation is that if you’re creating something from scratch, you really need to do your homework up front. Find out what the people really want.

However, because it’s a product and not a service, you’re going to have to learn how to do a little bit of pre-selling the concept. Especially if you’re creating it without using your own funds. Why? Because hopefully, you’re going to hire someone to do the programming for you! 

Once you have the online tool built with the help and funding of your “champions” and early users, then you can market it and build your influencer platform like any other online business.

Action Steps

So, lots of information here! 

Hope that it provides some value and gives you a bit of clarity.

Again, if you haven’t, I really recommend getting started with reading Rich Dad, Poor Dad and the Cashflow Quadrant. Everyone should be financially literate and these are great starting manuals on passive income. 

From there, feel free to connect with me. We can do a strategy session based on where you’re at and what your needs are.

get stuff done

Focus at Work – Keep the Main Thing the Main Thing and Get Stuff Done!

In the last post, I wrote about how deep focus might be the key to actually get stuff done in your craft or industry. Focus on the 20% of the effort that makes you the 80% of your income. You simply don’t have the capacity to do everything under the sun.
Since that post, I’ve had a few readers of that post message me and ask why I was going against the traditional advice of building an online business.

And as I thought about it, I realized that while I might be going against the more traditional advice of building a digital business, there are examples in the real world that suggest that less can be more.

So in this post, we’re going to look at just a few such examples.

Is Less Always More?

Now you might be thinking, there are plenty of examples of businesses that have grown after they offered more products and services. One such example is Amazon. Without knowing their history, you might think that they’ve always sold all the products and online services that they offer today.

However, this wasn’t always the case. When the company first started, it was an online book store based out of Jeff Bezos’ garage. Did he know that it was going to become what it is today? Probably not. But as the company offered more products and brought more people on to help manage those products, it is definitely an example of “More is More”.

Sometimes Scaling Doesn’t Always Work as Expected

But for every Amazon who scales correctly from the beginning, there’s also going to be examples where adding more to the menu might not be the best course of action.

Example 1: McDonald’s

Take McDonald’s for example. I remember in the late 00’s when McDonald’s was losing out on customers because people started to get smarter about what they were eating. It was during this time that chains like Panera, Starbucks, and Subway grew like bandits. In fact, it was pretty common to hear about places in large cities that had a couple of Starbucks on the same street.

These companies were eating McDonald’s lunch. So what did the golden arches do in response? They grew their menus and model to include some competitive products to what these other places were offering. By 2013, it had 145 items on its menu.

This was nuts and completely unsustainable. It’s no wonder that they were losing money at this point.

In an attempt to right the ship, they hired their most recent CEO, Steve Easterbrook. What Steve ended up doing was removing the items that weren’t selling as well and went back to the basics of the business. This seems to have worked because in the last year or so, their stock has actually risen.

Example 2: Apple

While this might not be the best recent example, it wasn’t too long ago that Apple was the tech company to watch out for – as an investor and a competitor.

In the Beginning…

Personally, I’ve always been an Apple user. My first computer was one and currently I’m writing this on a Macbook Pro.

During that time, the company has seen its ups and downs. I remember when I was first learning about computers, I found out the hard way that Windows 95 would not work on my Mac. How could this be? I thought everyone was going to be able to use it!

Nope, I was in the minority. Windows based PCs were what everyone else had. I can’t tell you how many conversations I had in high school answering questions about why I had a Mac… even when Steve Jobs came back as the CEO!

As I got involved in the Purdue University Mac Users Group (PUMUG), I started to learn how awesome of a group Mac users actually were. I had found my people! But interestingly, we were still a small group. All the clones had been taken off the market by that point. Those of us who were still users were because we were creatives or simply loved the Mac.

The Epic Growth of Apple

However, it was also during this time that the iPod was released. And interestingly, this was about the same time that I started paying attention to the stock market. I remember in 2001 watching the AAPL stock rise almost 50% until 9-11. 

Of course, stocks were down for just about everyone at that point. But as new and better versions of the iPod came out, their stock rose. And then, the point where everyone became familiar with Apple was in 2007 when the iPhone debuted. Wow… I really should have got some shares then. (Unfortunately, I thought I had already missed the boat. Ha!)

But there’s a point in me telling you this personal story of watching Apple rise. No one would have believed it would happen when I first got my computer – an Apple Performa 575. Had they stuck around trying to compete directly with Microsoft PCs, I think the company would have folded. Even to this day, but especially back then, they were known to jack up the price on products that were matched by less expensive PC options.

But it was because Steve was able to focus on building the next best thing (as he originally did with the original Mac) that they were able to be as great as they did during his time as CEO.

On a Smaller Scale

So, there’s a couple of examples of large companies that righted their ships after bloating to try and be everything to everyone. But it’s not something that just companies that size have to deal with. There are much smaller companies that struggle simply because they don’t focus on keeping the main thing the main thing.

And because they often don’t have the necessary resources or connections to keep going, they tend to not have the time to get their act together in time.

Example 3: Marsh

One such example is a local grocery store chain here in Indiana which was named Marsh. Like many local groceries, it folded in the last couple of years. It couldn’t find its niche in the market. I believe the main reason is that they tried to be everything to everyone. Instead of focusing on having its stores in certain profitable locations, it kept trying to keep open stores that were underperforming due to local competition – no matter what the cost.

Even after the company folded a couple of years ago, there are still locations that have not been bought by other chains. When I see them, I’m reminded of the struggles they had before going belly up. 

Interestingly, though, the places that were bought by other chains seem to be doing pretty well if not better than they did while they were under the Marsh banner. Some were bought by Kroger while others were bought by a regional chain called Needler’s. In fact, the Needler store in downtown Indy is considered by many to be one of the best groceries around!

Had Marsh realized that they should just cut anchor and focus on these stores that were actually making them income, they might be around yet today!

Action Steps

So, hope that gives a little more perspective on why it’s important to focus. If you’re good at building sales funnels, do that until you can outsource it. But don’t try to do that AND build a Fulfilled By Amazon (FBA) business AND build a podcast AND build a YouTube channel.

Pick one, get a handful of clients. Once you’ve done that, scale that business using ads on social media. Then from there, you can think about doing something else when the first job is sustainable.