A 7-Stage Growth Strategy That Has Helped Over 100,000 Businesses Scale With Carl Gould

Episode 96: A 7-Stage Growth Strategy That Has Helped Over 100,000 Businesses Scale With Carl Gould

The Profit First REI Podcast

July 18, 2022

David Richter


Meet the world’s leading authority on business and entrepreneurship, Carl Gould. Aside from being a serial entrepreneur, he’s also a keynote speaker, a best-selling author, and the CEO and founder of 7 Stage Advisors. A coaching and executive mentoring company with over 100 advisors in more than 15 countries around the world. Today, he’ll be giving a glimpse of his backstory, a comprehensive “how-to” guide for his business strategy, and some ideas behind building a legacy of wealth in the REI world.

Are you ready to take your company to the next level? If so, then we’ve got your back! Hang out with us in this episode. 

Key Takeaways:

[3:44] What is the idea behind seven-stage advisors?

[5:11] The seven stages in real estate are: strategic planning, specialty stage, synergy stage, systems stage, sustainability stage, salability, and succession.

[9:21] Carl’s early lessons about money and his perspectives on money today

[10:48] The importance of value engagement through pricing

[13:27] The closer your cash flow is to your operating expenses, the more attention you pay.

[15:28] How does Carl apply systems to get his cash in order?

[20:54] What’s Carl’s opinion on having a bottom-line profit but running out of cash?

[24:01] If you’re in real estate, you must understand that the deal flow has to be there all the time.


[9:31] “All money is not created equal.”

[9:59] “Certain money is more valuable than other money.”


Carl Gould’s Websites: carlgould.com, carl360.com, 7stageadvisors.com

Carl’s LinkedIn- www.linkedin.com/in/carlgould

Tired of living deal to deal? 

If you are a real estate investor or business owner who is tired of living deal to deal, and want to double your profits, head over here to book your no-obligation discovery call with me. Either myself or someone from my team will hop on a short call with you to get clear on your business goals, remove any obstacles holding you back, and map out a game plan to help you finally start keeping more of the money you work so hard to make. – David 


Carl Gould:

People sometimes get hung up on the financials. It’s a spreadsheet and it’s this and that. Look when you play any other game, there’s a scoreboard. All it is is a scoreboard and you just want somebody to constantly update the scoreboard. So in real time, how much you’re winning or not winning the game.


Welcome to the Profit First REI podcast, where real estate investors, master financial management, eradicate entrepreneurial poverty, and learn to be profitable from day one. Now for your host David Richter,

David Richter:

Hey everyone. It’s David Richter again with the Profit First REI podcast here with another special guest Carl Gould. And I am really excited to have him on I’ve got to see him at some of the masterminds that I’m a part of. And it’s cool because Carl is very well respected in those rooms has done a lot of things. He’s been a keynote speaker. He is a keynote speaker at a lot of different events. One of those events being ProfitCON, which is what Mike Michalowicz puts on for his close group. So he spoke at ProfitCON. So that fits right in with the profit. First I podcast he’s authored and coauthored books. He’s coauthored Blueprint for Success with Stephen R. Covey and Ken Blanchard. He has a best selling book, The 7-Stages of Small-Business Success, and then he’s also done Biz Dev Done Right which was the number one best seller on Amazon. So he’s done a lot of different things. He’s also trained and certified or accredited over 7,000 business coaches and mentors. So this is just, he has done a lot of things. He helps a lot of people in the small business world will break through barriers, get to where they need to be has written books. This is the, the consummate professional. So Carl, thanks for being on today.

Carl Gould:

Hey, thanks so much for having me. I’m really excited to be here.

David Richter:

Yeah. Excited to have you on and love that you’ve got that connection with Profit First, but before that, why don’t we dig into what you’ve done, where you are? Like, what got you started down the road of entrepreneurship? Like what, and like what has lot, sounds like lots has happened since you started, so why don’t you just

Carl Gould:


David Richter:

On what you’ve done?

Carl Gould:

Yeah. I mean, some people will say like stuff happens by accident. This happened literally by injury. I was going to school for accounting and finance at the university of Delaware. And I broke my leg pretty badly in my second year and I had to leave school. And I I was paying my own way, which means I wasn’t going back right away. And, and so I needed a way to make money. So what do you do when you’re broke and you can’t bend your legs in traction and you can’t move well, you start a business. Of course that’s what every logical person would do. So I started my very first company. It was a design build landscape company because I had done that in high school and I knew how to do that. And and I had that business for seven years and grew that business, sold it and started a construction company, grew that business and then sold that 12 years later.

Carl Gould:

But I started coaching in 1990 back when coaching wasn’t really an industry or anything like that. I was coaching with Tony Robbins and Steven Covey and you know, Franklin Covey planning system and, and situational leadership by Ken Blanchard and Dale Carnegie. And that sort of thing. NLP, Disk, you name it. If there’s a coaching system out there, I was learning it. So all through the nineties, I was coaching. And then once I, when I sold my second business in 2004 I right around that time, I started the business that I have today. So I was coaching all through the nineties. And then in 2002, I started 7 Stage Advisors, which is the business that I have today.

David Richter:

Awesome. So then yeah, you’ve done quite a few things there. And what is, so what is that seven, you know, what is, what are you focused on today? What does that do and what does that provide to a lot of the different people out there?

Carl Gould:

Yeah. Well, 7 Stage Advisors is based on our methodology, the 7 Stages of Business Success. And it’s a, it’s a growth methodology and it shows you a very, you know, very clear blueprint for how you go through the stages of development when you’re growing and scaling a business. And and so I latched onto that or very early in my career, cuz at the time there were no real systems for coaches. And so I was writing what would work for me. And we were doing a lot of disc assessments at the time and I realized, wait a minute, there is a personality of a company. It’s got four personality traits, just like we have four personality traits and where the, the personality of a business mirror, the personality its where you’re good. Your business is good where you’re not so good. Your business is not so good. And so you have strengths in blind spots and we created that methodology very early on in the nineties and that’s what we were, I was coaching on in the nineties and then I started certifying all those coaches starting in 2002.

David Richter:

Wow. Okay. So that’s awesome. I love that. And I think with the listening base here, that’s real estate investors. This is something that probably any business owner goes through those seven stages. Right? Doesn’t matter if they’re real estate, doesn’t matter if it’s a buy and pop shop, doesn’t matter if brick and mortar or fortune

Carl Gould:

500 doesn’t matter. Yeah. Everything in between. Cause there’s just search certain natural progressions you make. Yeah. So if you’re a real estate, I mean the seven stages matches, no matter what stage one is strategic planning, you’re a real estate investor. You gotta know what you’re doing. You gotta have a plan. Right. And then stage two is the specialty stage where you pick your niche in your specialty. So do you fix and flip? Are you a wholesaler? Are you do you do tax lean? Are you short sales? Like where is your niche or your expertise? Stage three is the synergy stage where you build your team, right? You need a team, right. Or unless you wanna do everything by yourself, stage four is the system stage. So you got this team to running around like crazy. They’re working their tail off, but do you have any good systems in your, in, you know, in your business?

Carl Gould:

What did Mike write the book clockwork, right, right. Does business work like clockwork? It’s gotta be a stage four company. Stage five is the sustainability stage. And that’s when the systems take over and your business runs with, without you, you can start thinking franchising. So now, now you do fixed and flip. Now you’re into short sales. Now you’re buying hold. Now you are now you’re corporate short term housing. Now you’re on an Airbnb or a luxury home rental business. Now you could do multiple revenue lines because your hub, your administrative hub is really systematized. Then stage six is saleability where you maximize the saleability of your business. Stage seven is succession where you can pass along your business to the next generation or sell it or have your managers buy you out. So it’s very, very relevant for real estate investing as well.

David Richter:

Awesome. Now with those seven stages, do you see that there’s one stage where most people get stuck on or is there, you know, like, or is it all stages like at different levels it’s different, you know? Or do you see something consistently like shoot this stage is just the one where, you know, most people have the hards SL going through this one.

Carl Gould:

Yeah. You picked it. The, the stage between three and four is what we call the graveyard of small business.

David Richter:


Carl Gould:

There’s a little, 1%. You’ve gotta go through. The miracle 1% we call it because you’re going from a synergy company to a systems company. In other words, you’re a personality driven business stages. One, two and three are growth stages, stages four through seven are scale stages. So most real estate investors will remain at two and three. You know, they go out, they wholesale, they’ve got the team. But there’s not like a ton of systems. Hey David, every, every project’s different. How can you possibly have a system? Well, you can, but that’s for another day. So stage three is where you go from personality driven, meaning the owner’s involved telling everybody what to do. It’s kind of like a war room, like make this happen, make that happen to systems, right? So when a system’s driven business, you don’t talk directly to the person. You talk to your system, which talks to the person which then talks, you know, then, then which makes things happen. And so that’s a hard change for a lot of business owners to make because they have to give up control and they’re not always willing to do that. So that’s the graveyard. We gotta be very careful. You make it through three to four. You can go anywhere you wanna go.

David Richter:

Huh. That’s awesome. And that’s where we see a lot of businesses too. It’s like, you have to get those systems in place. And that’s what Profit First is. It’s a system for the finances. Like there has to be a change from no system running around like a chicken with your head cut off to something that’s actually helping you get to that place. Well, you are a wealth of knowledge here, especially for what you’ve been doing. Cuz I know that how many businesses so far have you, do you think that you’ve helped get through the stages or that you’ve worked with up to this point?

Carl Gould:

Yeah. Over 100,000 at this point.

That’s since 1990. Yeah.

David Richter:

That’s, that’s incredible.

Carl Gould:

We’ve had the privilege to work with a lot of small businesses.

David Richter:

Yeah. I was gonna say that you’ve whenever we go to these events, it seems like you have helped by either a lot of people in that room or like they’re they have used you and it’s just been incredible for them. So I just wanted to see how many of those businesses that’s a lot of businesses, a lot of lives changed and I love that, you know, like, okay, this is the graveyard between three and four because you gotta know what that is. And that control that you have to give up. So for this podcast, since it’s the Profit First REI, I like talking about money on it and maybe we’ll talk about some of the systems around it. But that’s where I like to ask a lot of people. Just kind of some deeper questions first. So let me ask you this. Carl, what early lessons did you learn about money versus how you think about money today and do they differ and how do you think, you know, like, do you have any different thoughts?

Carl Gould:

Yeah. Well I learned a few lessons. One of ’em was that all money’s not created equal.

David Richter:


Carl Gould:

Right. So if I, if I make money through a transaction a one time transaction, you know, it, it adds a certain amount of enterprise value, not a lot, but it ensures I have a job tomorrow. I made a little bit of profit.

Carl Gould:

If I have recurring revenue, that’s got a lot of enterprise value and almost guarantees that I’m gonna work with that person over and over again. So there’s, I learned that certain money is more valuable than other money. The other thing I learned was I learned was is you can almost, you can proportionately monitor how much your clients are engaged based on how much you’re charging them. In other words, if I charge you a little bit for a service and something goes wrong and I’m the provider, I have a problem. Hey Carl, you screwed that up. I paid you a dollar. You better get moving on it. However, if I charge you for that same service, $5 a premium, something goes wrong. We have a problem. Cause you paid my premium. You’re really invested. You probably have some sort of urgency going on. So you’re gonna help pave the way for me to make sure that I get, I get my work done.

Carl Gould:

So I learned the value of engagement through pricing, but I also learned that you can, you can make a profit and run outta cash. I learned that you can bring in a lot of money and have no profit and no cash. I learned you can have more month at the end of your money. <Laugh> I like to have more money at the end of my month. And I, and I learned, I, you know, it was funny. It came from an odd source cuz I took a business lesson from this movie. There’s a lot of lessons I could have taken from this movie and I did, but there, there was a business lesson. I remember there was a movie years ago called Schindler’s List. Oh yeah. I dunno if you remember that movie, right? Yeah. About Shindler, who saved a lot of Jews during the world war II, but he had a bookkeeper.

Carl Gould:

And I remember during the movie, every Liam Neeson’s character, right? Yeah. Every time Liam Neeson needed something, he had an idea, he’d go straight to his numbers guy and say, can I do it or can I not? Can I do it or can I not? And he would go through the numbers and say, here’s what you could do. And here’s how much of it you do or you can’t do this or you can only do this for a certain period of time. But I, I remember taking it away saying, wow, that person’s the key to my success. Hmm. If I know my numbers, you know, knowing the numbers is the key to my success. But if you’re a business owner that wants to grow beyond you being a stage two business where it’s just all about you you wanna have a team, you wanna have processes, you know, if you wanna continue to grow, you need that numbers person.

Carl Gould:

You need that person where that is gonna, that is gonna take the cash, put it where it goes. And I’m a big fan before, you know, Mike wrote Profit First. I was always a big fan of taking money and putting it in separate accounts because I came from the construction world. Hmm. And what happens in construction is you get a deposit for work. You haven’t done now in the construction world, they call that overbilling never really liked that term. I’m like, it’s not overbilling. You’re billed for this is progressive payment, right? You just didn’t do the work yet. But what happens is construction people companies get caught in this trap where they get their deposit for this job, job B, but they use it to pay off job a right, you know, and then job C pays off B and then they get into this juggling act that just, it’s hard to get out away from. So I learned early on take the money for what it’s intended and put it in an account and name it for what it’s intended, you know, in my system, you know, profit owners, owners pay on and on. So I used to have, and still do always have a bunch of accounts. Money comes in and I learned the lesson I learned was the tighter. My cash was to my cash flow was to my operating expense. The more attention I paid.

David Richter:

Hmm, yep.

Carl Gould:

The more cash I had in the bank. And I was like, oh, I can relax now. No, no, no. So I would always make it. So I just, I just a little bit more in my operating account than what my expenses, what my operating expenses were because I always paid attention. I was always like, all right, I can only use a certain amount. I gotta budget this. And I found out and it’s same thing. We, we work with fortune 500 CEOs and S of the board. And it’s the same thing. Whether you’re a small, mid-size large business. If money’s tight, you pay attention. Money’s not tight. You lay back a little bit. Yeah. So that was a big lesson for me. So I artificially, I still do it to this day. Keep it really tight because I wanna, I want, you know, I read those financials every single time they come in, I go through it once a month without fail because I know it’s tight. I don’t wanna bounce a check. I don’t wanna miss something. I don’t wanna miss a payment. Or I don’t want that phone call where I’m like, oh, we can’t do this until next week or whatever. So I’m always on top of it. So those are some of the major lessons I learned over the years.

David Richter:

That’s that’s awesome. And goes right in line with what we’re, what this podcast is all about. So, and I love what you said to, you know, like that you keep it tight. Now you might have money in other places, but it’s like, that’s already sectioned out for whatever that is. So that way it’s like, like you said, creating that artificial sense of urgency. So you don’t lose that edge because if we see that over and over again, if someone just has one account, it’s just that cash salad that they’re tossing all the time. So

Carl Gould:

The worst idea.

David Richter:

Yeah. Worst it is. It’s, it’s something we see over and over is one of the biggest mistakes. But with it, your seven stages of business. And with that, that model, what do you think it’s after stage two that’s when they start getting either a bookkeeper in place or like systems around the finances, like when would you say like they, Hey, if you’re a business owner, this is when you need this system, you know, like a system to at least get your cash in order.

Carl Gould:

Well, I think you are. I think the bookkeeper is the first hire you make, whether it’s an internal person or it’s outsource bookkeeping service or whomever, it’s the first hire you make because you’re going nowhere, unless your numbers are under control. I don’t care what it is. Your second hire is an executive assistant and you can make those two hires pretty close to each other. Yeah. But first and foremost, you can’t overpay for somebody who’s good at, at managing your numbers. So I’m, I’m looking at stage two is when you’re starting that, because in stage two, you become a special specialist, you become an authority and you could charge the maximum amount, right? Yeah. And so what you wanna do right away is you want that money managed because once you get into stage three, when you’re building a team and stage four and you’re systematizing, you need to have as much price.

Carl Gould:

You you’re, you’re charging the maximum pricing because you’re gonna need room in your profit margin, your gross and net profit margin to afford a layer of management, the problem. And the reason why people get stuck in stage three is they, they charge what they think they can get or what they think they’re worth. Yeah. They’re doing all the work and they’re doing it side by side with their employees. And then they say, oh my gosh, who is really driving the business instead of doing the tactical work. And they say, I need a manager and they realize, wait a minute, I don’t charge enough for the layer for a middle layer of management. And that’s where they get stuck. Right? And so they don’t have enough profit built in to actually separate themselves from the day to day activities. And so I like hiring a bookkeeper right. Outta the gate because now you have control and you know what your numbers are. It’s the best game of fantasy football you’ll ever play in your life. It’s like gamifying business. The, you know, people sometimes get hung up on the financials, like, eh, it’s a spreadsheet and it’s this and that look when you play any other game, there’s a scoreboard. All it is is a scoreboard. And you just want somebody to constantly update the scoreboard. So in real time, how much you’re winning or not winning the game.

David Richter:

That is really good. That is so good because we see that all the time people are in that they think they’re in that stage three or four, you know, or they’re going there. And it’s like, if they don’t have that, it’s like, we gotta take it back a couple steps and just get you to, to ground zero here. Because without those numbers, you, like you said, you’re not gonna be able to go anywhere that you really want to go. So we see that happen all the time. And I think it’s, I, I don’t know if you agree with this, but I think it’s one of the biggest sources of frustration in business owners where they’re like, man, I’ve got these people next to me. And like, we’re doing a lot of things. We’re making a lot of things happen, but I don’t seem to be gaining ground. And usually it’s because they don’t have a handle on that financial side or don’t know the scoreboard. Would you agree with that when you have worked with a hundred thousand businesses?

Carl Gould:

Yeah. The way, the way, the way we see it manifest David is that when we first start working with a company, we look at their pricing structure and they’re often their pricing structure is off. OK. Some, some things where they’re charging too much for some, not enough, they’re not intertwined, not bundling properly. Certain stuff is not recurring when it could be the pricing strategy is usually, you know, way off and, and that results in them not being ever being able to get ahead. Because either the cash, flow’s not there, meaning they’re not getting paid frequently enough. Or they’re not charging enough. So they, you know, I, cause I dealt with this in construction. I used to say that I was rich like four or five days of the year, you know? Cause in the construction world, you get progressive payments, right? Yeah.

Carl Gould:

So we’re doing this big project, progressive payment comes in, you real estate guys know, and what happens? You get this big chunk of money and you’re like, yes, either they get wired, it gets wired into your account or you, you get it in the mail. And you’re like, man. Right. And you’re, and you’re like, we’re going to dinner tonight, everybody. And then the next day you disperse everything. And you’re like, Ugh, I’m broke again. Yeah. You know, so I used to joke. I’m like, today’s our day, you know, we eat good today. And and because I didn’t, you know, I didn’t understand that well, but once I got a handle on it and understood how to spread the payments out more, more frequent payments, how to segregate the cash. I always had the money. I have a set and forget it system where, you know, money comes into the account, it’s automatically dispersed and I’m just dealing with the operating account. And then I wake up a month later after being in the weeds and working my butt off. And I realize, huh, there’s money for the taxes. Oh, we got money for payroll. Oh, we got money for this. Cause it was automatically going out there. So

David Richter:

Yeah, no, I like that. And that’s where I think a lot of people get tripped up. It’s like, yeah. Especially in the real estate world that happens all the time. They’re fixing and flipping and they get a big lump sum and it’s like, okay, feel great today. But we gotta, when when’s the next deal closing, and then that deal doesn’t close when they thought it would. And it’s three weeks later and then all that money’s gone. So yeah, I just, we see it all the time in the real estate investing world. But I, you also said something that I thought was interesting when you were listening on what the, what lessons you had learned that sometimes people have a profit, but they’ve run outta cash or they’ve got a, you know, they’ve got good assets, but there’s no there’s no profitability or, or cash or whatnot. And how do you see that happen and unfold in a business where they may have a bottom line profit, but there’s no actual cash in the accounts. And what do you see trip people up from that perspective?

Carl Gould:

Yeah. So I, I get a call one day from a president, one of our clients and he goes, he goes Carlisle. I don’t understand. He goes, we are selling more for more meaning, more product for higher price. We’re selling more for more, how am I outta cash?

David Richter:


Carl Gould:

And I said, well, let’s, let’s break it down. And what we learned was the he was selling more products and services for more, for more higher price. But what they were doing was over buying on their inventory, number one. And because they got busy, they hired a bunch of employees because they thought they were gonna, they needed them to fulfill the orders. As it turns out, we didn’t need to, we could have automated a few things. We could have dropped shipped. Some other things. There were some, there were areas of efficiency. And so all the money he was bringing on the front end, he was paying more on the back end in higher inventory costs. And higher payroll costs, you know? Okay. And so you know, you, when, when you grow, you have to make sure that the profit, sorry, the growth is profitable. And a lot of companies growth is not profitable. Yeah. Because what they do is they ramp up their expenses as fast as they, as they ramp up their sales. And that doesn’t have to be the case.

David Richter:

That is so good. Cuz we see that in the real estate investing world all the time, like, okay, I wanna do more deals, more marketing’s going out the door and like more deals being closed. But then like you said, they feel busy. So they hired another, you know, acquisitions manager and another dispositions manager and another executive assistant and this person in the transaction coordinator and like, yeah. And then their expenses are exceeding that growth. So if we see that all the time too, and if you don’t have a handle on that, you’re not gonna be able to grow profitably and you don’t know like, okay, do we actually have a margin here? Like then can we oh right. Or do we not have

Carl Gould:

Anything? Yeah. Yeah. And the other thing that happens is they might have, they might do have an intense period where they do a few deals in a row and they’re like, oh, oh, let me catch my breath. And they go a month or two before they do a deal. But guess what? The, the part of their business that didn’t take a break was their overhead. Right. So they made all this profit in the first six months. Then they, then it’s two months where they’re not doing a deal or they’re not closing or they don’t have something going on. And, but all of their overheads are there. And so it just ate into the profit that they just made in those past months. So, you know, so they get on this hamster wheel, feast and famine where they find out at the end of the year, they’re tired. They worked their tail off and they don’t have profit.

David Richter:

Yeah. Yeah. That’s what, that’s what we want to get rid of with profit. First. We want you to get rid of that mentality that you have to wait till the end of the year for hopefully that there’s some profit and being profitable from every deal, every single interaction that you do and scaling as you scale, no matter what you’re wanting to do. So I love that Carl has been incredible. Just have a last couple, few questions here is what since you’ve seen so many things in the business world, what advice would you give to the real estate investors on this? Just your best piece of advice that you give to business owners as you’re working with them?

Carl Gould:

Well, first from a real estate standpoint is the deal flow has to be there all the time, right? Yeah. The, the, the, you know, check with your account and check with your attorney. But the tax laws were written to benefit the, the real estate company that has momentum, that doesn’t stop. You know, you have 10 30, 1 exchanges, you have, you know, you have cost segregation and accelerated depreciation, but you can’t stop. You stop. And tho those things go away and you, you lose some of those things. And so what we find is is that, you know, people get into this business and, and they, and they don’t realize just how intense it is. And so they, they lose, they stop or they give up their momentum and the, and the financial benefits that are built right into the tax law for your benefit go away. And so and so when it comes to business, you know, it’s relentless, it’s merciless and you must stay on track and maintain your momentum, especially in a real estate business. It’s a momentum play. You know, there’s other businesses that are seasonal. You wanna play that game. That’s fine. But it doesn’t fully benefit you in the real estate, in the real estate investment game.

David Richter:

Yeah. No, that’s, that is great advice. I think that’s one of the things that most people realize very quickly if they’re in the real estate game, if they lose that momentum, it’s not only sometimes is it hard to get it back? They understand, like I gotta build this engine and I’ve gotta make sure that this is exactly what we need to do to keep moving forward. Yeah. So, well,

Carl Gould:

Now if I put on my construction hat for just a second, yeah. You real estate people out there, you know, you real estate investors, you have pre-production production and closeout of a, of a project, right? Yeah. So pre-production is all of the identifying the project, negotiating it, getting it in there, lining everything up, you know, getting your, permitting, all that sort of thing. Then there’s production, whatever work you’re doing on the place, then there’s closeout where we have seen the biggest problem is in the closeout. Hmm. When closeout drags on and you don’t get your final payment, you don’t finish off the project. And then you’re into the next project and this job takes a little bit longer, but you don’t get it sold. That’s where the drain seems to happen. So if I, so I would encourage you all to look back at your close out procedures and see how you could tighten those up as much as possible, cuz that’s usually where the creep is. Okay. And that’s usually where the drain of profit goes.

David Richter:

No. Yeah. That’s that’s really good too. So this has been incredible. There’s been a ton of gold nuggets here and you need to pick up Carl’s books. I’m sure. Are they on Amazon? Where can they find the books?

Carl Gould:

Amazon, you go on CarlGould.com and I could sell you right. Outta my private stock either way.

David Richter:

Okay, awesome. So there you go. Carl Gould. That’s G O U L D. So CarlGould.com. And then also, I know we just gave the website there, but I always like asking as my final question. Is there any way the listeners can provide value back to you? Is that connecting with you on a social media or going to your website, picking up the books or tell them how they can work with you if you want, you know, like if you are taking on clients now I know you’re are incredibly busy, so Dylan, that’s just whatever they can do for you.

Carl Gould:

Well, one of the things that I love to do guys, is I like to spread the word I like to do podcasts. And I also like to I speak a lot at conferences. So if any of you have a conference that’s coming up and you want, you wanna rock that concert hook me up and I’d love to be a speaker at your next event.

David Richter:

Awesome. There you go. And can they get ahold of you at carlgould.com and does there contact us or something there or,

Carl Gould:

Yeah, CarlGould.com contact us there or carl360.com. That’s my personal site and you can find me there as well.

David Richter:

Awesome. There you go. That’s how you can get in touch with Carl. As you can tell here, he is an amazing speaker has probably a story for any situation that has ever come up in the history of business cuz of how much he has been in deep dive with business owners. So this is someone that it can provide a lot of value to you and your base. If you’ve got a base out there that, or if you’re a part of a mastermind or something too, it’s gonna be a great speaker. So Carl, thank you so much. Thanks for being on the Profit First REI Podcast.

Carl Gould:

Thanks for having me. I really appreciate it.

Speaker 4:

Thank you so much for listening to today’s show. If you found this episode valuable, could you do me a quick favor? Could you give us an honest rating within iTunes and be honest, you could say whether you liked it or not. And obviously with iTunes, the more reviews and ratings we have, the better it is for other people that are searching for Profit First and a podcast. So we’d love to be ranked on there and that’s thanks to your help. So we would really appreciate that if you would like to go give us a rating. Also, if you’re looking to connect with us further, I would highly recommend checking out our Facebook group Profit First for real estate investors. And that’s literally what it’s called. So you can type in Profit First for real estate investors and you’ll be able to find <laugh>, you’ll be able to find our Facebook group right there.

Speaker 4:

So come join active real estate investors who are supporting each other and growing their businesses and profits together. That’s what that group is all about. The link should be in the description below. And if you’re interested in working with us and implementing Profit First in your real estate business, we offer coaching and guidance. So if you wanna work with someone who’s actually Profit First certified and who works right now currently with real estate businesses, you can actually go start your application process by going to simpleCFO.com forward slash apply, or just go right to simpleCFO.com. And there’s an apply button right on there. If you wanna actually start your Profit First journey with someone who can actually walk you through those step by step and help, you know, and grow your cash flow. Thanks again for joining us for another episode of the Profit First REI Podcast. See you next episode.

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Title: “Realize Your REI Potential with Jennifer Steward: Authenticity, Profitability, and Consistency”

Episode: 240

In this episode of Profit First for REI podcast, we are sitting down with Jennifer Steward of REI Data Source, to unveil the secret weapon you’ve been missing: authenticity. 

Jen will crack the code on how to project a winning image that seals the deal…But wait, there’s more! Learn the top revenue activities every entrepreneur should master and discover the power of consistent strategies to solve your REI problems.

This episode is your blueprint to a thriving virtual business. Don’t miss out!

Key Takeaways:

[0:50] Introducing Jennifer Steward

[6:07] Project an image of success from

time to time

[9:16] Some best revenue activities that every entrepreneur should know

[11:00] Leveraging every avenue that you can, get consistency, and make sure you’re solving current problems

[17:43] The golden ratio in social media marketing is: 90% business and 10% personal

[25:02] The benefits of running a virtual business


[4:20] “Authenticity is like a business repellant.”

[10:09]  “In a market where you can’t dind deals but there’s plenty of money, you have to be the person who knows how to find the deals.” 

Connect with Jennifer:

REI Data Source Website: https://www.reidatasource.net 

Jen’s Email: jen@reidatasource.net 

Phone Number: (469) 952-8011

Tired of living deal to deal? 

If you are a real estate investor or business owner who is tired of living deal to deal and want to double your profits, head over here to book your no-obligation discovery call with me. Either myself or someone from my team will hop on a short call with you to get clear on your business goals, remove any obstacles holding you back, and map out a game plan to help you finally start keeping more of the money you work so hard to make. – David


Speaker 1 (00:00):

You need to just be able to solve the seller’s problem and just start with one exit strategy that you’re really confident in. And then once you master that, expand from there. And like you and I talked about, it’s who not how you don’t have time. Most likely to master all of those. So have a referral partner that you can build a relationship with and trust.

Speaker 2 (00:23):

If you’re a real estate investor who’s sick and tired of living deal to deal, then welcome home. Hear from everyday real estate investors just like you, and discover how they’ve completely transformed their business by taking a profit First approach. This is the profit first for REI podcast, where we believe revenue is vanity. Profit is sanity. It’s time to start making profit a habit in your business. So here’s your host, David Richter.

Speaker 3 (00:50):

Today we have Jennifer Stewart on which she is a go-getter. She’s out there, she’s doing lots of things. She’s in the cold calling space. She’s also a real estate investor. But then she’s also someone who I think has gone through a lot in her life and has come out on the other side stronger. And you can tell just from what she talks about and what she sees as the most successful real estate investors, what they do on a daily basis, on a monthly basis, it’s just good bottom line stuff to help you if you want to become someone who’s consistent in business, no matter what the market is doing. So I think this is going to be a really good episode. She gets into the nitty gritty and also just helping you get to where you want to be and making more money as a entrepreneur. Jennifer, welcome to the Profit First REI podcast. I’m so excited you’re here today.

Speaker 1 (01:37):

David, thank you so much for having me. I’ve been looking forward to this all weekend. What a great way to spend a Tuesday at noon and thank you. Thank you so much for having me today.

Speaker 3 (01:47):

Yeah, well I’m excited because we dance around in these different groups and we’re going to these events and you’re speaking a lot, you’re helping a lot of people out there, and I see you as someone who’s just very much, I hope this comes across, but just a very mature human being that has gone through a lot, but you haven’t just been a victim. You’ve been someone who said, I’m going to grow from what I’ve gone through, and that’s what I’ve just observed. And then honestly, there’s lots of my friends that respect you a lot too. I’ve gotten to know you well, so I’m excited about this one. So many things that I feel like we could go down, lots of roads here. So again, thank you for being on the show.

Speaker 1 (02:25):

I appreciate that. That’s very generous and kind observation. I think mature is a very polite word and I am just kind of overwhelmed with that kind assessment.

Speaker 3 (02:37):

Yeah, well, I don’t want to use any rude words for you here today, so we’re going to dive into it. No, but seriously I do. I see as someone who takes a lot of those lessons and applies them right away. I would also say too that you are not scared about sharing what you’ve learned and what you’ve gone through. Where do you get that deep sense of truth to share exactly what’s going on? And I don’t know if you’re a fan of the office or if you’ve ever seen that show. I like the Office, if you like the office. Where is it? I think it’s Kelly’s, Dayton, Daryl, and she says, he said, who says exactly what they’re thinking? What kind of game is that? And I’m like, that is Jennifer to a t. And I’m just wondering how did you get that as part of you? Because I think it’s so genuine, authentic, and it brings more people to you and they resonate. You’re saying what they’re scared to say.

Speaker 1 (03:30):

My business advisors have told me to do the opposite. They said

Speaker 3 (03:36):

Genuine, sorry. That’s great. Basically the

Speaker 1 (03:38):

More money you’re going to make, you have to play the game. And so what I’ll do, David being totally transparent, is I’ll turn that on and off depending on my revenue. So I know that sounds hilarious probably, but if my revenue gets lower, I will turn off the authenticity to a certain extent and go back into my polite game, the system mode. But whenever income is plentiful, I’ll go back to being more my authentic sharing self because number one, sometimes I get more business than I can possibly ever take down, and that’s overwhelming. And so I find that authenticity is like a business repellent, but it’s so much, it’s so stressful for me to be fake. It’s so stressful for me to be something I’m not. And that’s me being a little bit funny, but also kind of realistic as a business woman. And then there’s me as a person who has a soul and that person wants to connect. That person realizes that I’m not just here to make money, I am here to help people who are suffering. And I know that sounds cheesy and cliche, but it’s true. And lemme tell you, I don’t want to be one of those people who are suffering. So I will switch into a mode that is more polished, if that makes sense.

Speaker 3 (05:09):

That makes sense.

Speaker 1 (05:10):

Because I don’t want to starve. And so I do kind of go back and forth between, okay, I need to dial it back. And I think that people notice that if I was just all the time talking about what a person can overcome or the deep parts of our why and our feelings, then I think that would really drive away a lot of business. I’ve seen people who got up on stage and talked about aligning the chakras and they were never invited back. So you have to find a balance between being a compelling human who helps people overcome these internal struggles that we likely all face, especially as entrepreneurs, depression, anxiety, slow times debt overhead, really painful things that will keep up at night and destroy your health and destroy your relationships. And then we also need to focus on, unfortunately we have to project an image of success from time to time because I’ll tell you, I always get the most business whenever I’m on vacation, I can actively ask people to leave me alone while I’m on vacation.


And that’s whenever I get all the messages for, Hey, I want to do business with you. Because they see the success, they see that it works. When really that’s I’m spending the money, that’s whenever I’m the least successful because I’m not putting time into my business and the dollars are just flying out the window like someone who has an open wound. And so it’s funny because it’s whenever you’re doing the best that it doesn’t show, and whenever I’m making the most money, it’s usually whenever I look the worst, I haven’t had time to groom myself. I’m probably still wearing pajamas that day. And so it’s almost always the opposite as to who has money and who doesn’t. So the person you see with the super nice house and the super nice car, those people have confided in me, Hey, I have so much pressure, I feel like I’m going to lose it.


But those are the people that look up to and respect. And so that being said, David, if I was financially independent, 100% I would be genuine and deep and all the time, if that makes sense. It would be like, Hey, when you woke up today, did you thank God for just waking up? And what are some ways that you can lower your overhead? What are some ways you can increase revenue? Are you wasting time on non-revenue generating activities? Are you doing too much stuff for free? Those of us who are in real estate, I think we do too many things for free. And like you and I talked about, it’s not just your expenditures that are on your books, it’s also the expenditures that are on your time. And so I talked to my attorney last week about dropping non-revenue generating businesses that just aren’t converting because there’s hope in one hand and there’s numbers in the other.


And after a certain amount of time, you need to realize which businesses are covering for the businesses that are taking a loss. And so my lawyer kind of sat me down and I know you do this, and we had to look at which businesses are just not generating and which are carrying the ones that aren’t. And he said, just focus on the ones that are. And so that being said, whenever we wake up every day, if we are our real selves all day, it usually doesn’t translate into revenue. But when I have the luxury of being myself, David, I always want to reduce the suffering of others because that’s kind of all I’ve done my whole life is I’ve had to overcome and overcome and overcome and overcome to a degree that just feels, it could feel really unlucky if I let myself go there. But instead of feeling unlucky, I have to see the opposite side of it. So for all the extremely low probability things that happened to me, there’s also extreme low probability things that happened for me. And you have to see both.

Speaker 3 (09:11):

Right. That’s really good. That is really good. So since we’ve gone down this road, and especially for the real estate investors listening, what would you say are some of the best revenue producing activities they could be doing or that you see in your own life that you do that translates into that

Speaker 1 (09:29):

You have to fill a niche that nobody else is filling? You have to see a problem that everyone is facing a hitch in the giddy up that’s keeping everyone from making money. What I’m noticing right now, for example, people don’t have the money for down payments on their loans. So like we mentioned before the call, I’m offering a program where you can do a hundred percent financing as long as you’re one of my cold calling clients. And it blew up because people don’t have the money for a down payment right now, and my cold callers really aren’t that expensive. And so it solves that problem for them. And in the past, the biggest problem was finding deals. And in a market where you can’t find deals, but there’s plenty of money, then you have to be the person who knows how to find the deals.


And so you have to find what’s keeping people from making money today in the current market and then really, really leverage your social media and go speak, like you and I talked about before, go speak on those topics, mention it on social media, put it in your stories, tell people what you do, and then be really consistent with your message because people are watching, they want to see consistency. And it’s like my lawyer taught me, who’s Jeff Watson? If they see you being erratic and all over the place and not consistent in your message, then people don’t trust that they can go to you to solve these problems. And so that’s the big key is leveraging your social media and being really consistent in your message and making sure that you’re solving the problems of today. So those three things, consistency, solving the current problems and just making sure that you’re leveraging pretty much every avenue that you can.


And of course, always want to be competent and run an ethical business because you can spend 10 years building a reputation. And if you hire one bad employee or someone who makes you look bad or doesn’t deliver for a client, unfortunately bad news spreads like wildfire and just whatever you’re buying on Amazon, you’re going to pay more attention to the bad review than the good reviews because we’re looking for to avoid pain for good reasons. I mean, some things could take us out and set us back a decade if we make the wrong investment. And so it’s really, really important in a capital intensive business what we’re in to be someone who’s trustworthy, competent with very high integrity. Like you and I talked last week and I told you, I was like, Hey, I can’t be consulting on a topic that I don’t know about. Thank you for the inquiry. But that would be horribly unethical. And you have to do that. You have to turn down the fast money for the long-term play of having high integrity.

Speaker 3 (12:18):

Yeah, no, a hundred percent. That’s really good. I think that’s consistency, solving the problem for today and then getting the message out. So those are three steps there. And I think that’s where it’s like, it’s so simple, but it’s like that number one, you got to do it consistently and you got to move to where the market is. So I think that’s really good stuff because I can’t agree more because I think, do you think that a lot of real estate investors build themselves into a box and then when that solving the problem of what they used to do doesn’t solve it anymore, that they have a hard time pivoting to something that will and bring the revenue? Yeah,

Speaker 1 (12:57):

I mean you have your fast movers, your highly networked people who are poised to move, but for anyone who doesn’t want to hustle 24 7, it’s hard to pivot like that. I mean, at some point, I think human beings, we all want consistency, predictability. And one thing that’s really tough about this business, and I’m sure everyone notices, is how fast paced it really is. Now, if we were in the paper business, for example, David, how much do you think things change? Speaking of office space or not office space, the

Speaker 3 (13:35):

Office office,

Speaker 1 (13:36):

Yeah, yeah. I mean if we’re a paper company, how often do you think the industry changes? Right.

Speaker 3 (13:42):

It doesn’t really change. I don’t know.

Speaker 1 (13:44):

I mean maybe a paper guy comes and messages us and said, oh, you wouldn’t believe.


But it seems like from the outside looking in that real estate, every day there’s some new gimmicky stuff and you’re just like, I can’t handle this. I need to step away because I can’t handle one more gimmick. I can’t handle one more big change. It’s difficult. And so I think knowing the fundamentals, because I know people who make big money just using a yellow pad for their CRMs still, and some of these people are big names, and I don’t think he’d mind me saying, Adam Johnson, Leon Johnson’s son, he does a lot of deals just using a yellow pad. Courtney Frickey, she has her paper leads that she keeps in a file and only goes through them if she needs to. So a lot of these gimmicks just really aren’t the real deal. The real deal is not necessarily what software you’re using, it’s where are we in the market, are there more deals than money or is there more money than deals?


Those are really the main two shifts that if you pay attention to those in the market, you’re good. And people was like, oh, I do this with AI and I do that with ai. I haven’t seen AI do anything really amazing except for Google search type stuff. I mean, I’ve listened to the AI calls and they’re still not that great yet. And I keep hearing people say, oh, AI is going to be doing our acquisition management soon. Well, yes, true, but when I haven’t seen it yet and still, which problem is it solving the low money problem or the low inventory problem? And right now I think it’s market to market. It’s kind of like mushrooms and in certain markets we still have an inventory problem and other markets are more of a buyer’s market and we have more of a money problem. So you have to take it market by market, city by city and see which problem are you solving. Those are really the main two problems in real estate. And what I’ve seen is everything else is a marketing gimmick. As someone who does marketing myself, we try to repackage it to get people’s attention, but it’s kind of all the same stuff.

Speaker 3 (15:59):

Yeah, no, that makes sense. So would you say then the people like Adam and the people like Courtney, are those three things that you mentioned before consistent solve the problem for today and then the media and the messaging is that their key to success and as long as they’re consistent doing, what’s really is that or is there something that makes them different just because they go out there, and I love how you said with their CRM is a yellow legal pad, it’s none of the fancy stuff and all that where a lot of people get trapped in that rabbit hole. So that’s where my I’m wondering, yeah,

Speaker 1 (16:31):

Courtney’s really consistent on Instagram and she gets a lot of referrals. And Adam’s been in his market for 20 years, so he gets a lot of referrals. So you talk about consistency, it’s decades of consistency in Adam’s case, and Courtney has been doing it I think for 10 years, and she really gets out there in terms of, she speaks in front of realtors groups, she speaks at rhe, she holds her radio show, and she’s very consistent in her branding. She doesn’t just show herself boating on the weekend or shopping or whatever. And if you look back through her Instagram, you can see that in the past she did have more of showing her personal life. And Connor Steinbrook taught me, don’t show your personal life, just make your entire page about business. But there is one caveat to that. You don’t want to look like one of those VA generated pages where there’s no real person behind it.

Speaker 3 (17:23):


Speaker 1 (17:24):

Looks like a VA just runs my page and it’s just my VA who does everything. So I do post pictures of my family and going to the gym, and if I do go on vacation, I do post that. But too much of it makes people think you’re not available for business. So I would say the golden ratio that I’ve discovered is about 90% business and 10% personal, just to add that speckle of reality that you are a real person and not a va. And I think Courtney does that very well on her Instagram for example, and she doesn’t even have to spend money on marketing. She told me she doesn’t do that anymore. She’s a hundred percent referral based now and it’s taken being consistent

Speaker 3 (18:04):

And she does a lot of creative deals or that’s all she does is the creative type deals. She

Speaker 1 (18:10):

Does kind of everything. I know her to do flips, I know her to do. She’s mostly a buy and hold investor and she will do creative when she needs to. But I think I’ve had a lot of clients come to me over the years and try to curate a marketing plan where all we do is creative for them. And that is really tough. You’re going to have a low ratio of being able to do that. Typically creative should be something that comes organically from time to time. If you make that your only goal, and this was a guy with a lot of money, by the way, the one I’m thinking of. He had so much money, yet he was super focused on just doing creative. And I understand if someone has no money and they’re just focused on doing creative, but they get it in their head that this is the way to do it and there is no the way to do it.


You have to just solve the problem of the current seller who wants to sell, whether it’s a listing, whether it’s innovation, whether it’s a flip, whether it’s a wholesale, whether it’s long-term buying hold subject to seller finance, and anything else I’m missing in there. It shouldn’t just be, oh, I’m going to pull this list and I’m just going to do ovations or I’m going to do this campaign. I’m just going to do subject two. You need to just be able to solve the seller’s problem and just start with one, this is something I’ve taught for years. Just start with one exit strategy that you’re really competent in. And then once you master that, expand from there, and like you and I talked about, it’s who not how you don’t have time most likely to master all of those. So have a referral partner that you can build a relationship with and trust for innovations for subject to maybe even for seller financing or maybe master two, but mastering all of the above would be insanity. Even if you had been doing this for 50 years like Leon Johnson, that would be insanity. So be ready to leverage joint venture partners that you can trust with the right paperwork behind it. Of course.

Speaker 3 (20:02):

Would you say that if you go down that road, can you build a business like that? Meaning where a business is systems and other people where eventually you have a business that runs itself or runs it with the people in the processes you’ve put in place. It seems like with real estate, like you’re saying, I have to solve the seller’s problem right then and there. So it almost sounds like you need at those higher level people, you can’t just get the McDonald’s line worker that’s there or the robot or AI or something like that. That’s

Speaker 1 (20:33):

The challenge that I’ve run into. And I feel like conceptually it can be done, but then in psychology we have something called channel factors, these little things that get in the way of what sounds good on paper. And that’s usually where the human element comes in because I have staff of 180 people in my agency and I’ve learned little tricks to managing them. For example, this is going to sound weird, I don’t do company meetings because I just meet with them as I need to. I do spend a lot of time with them upfront, maybe a few hours, and then I never talk to them again except to tell them when a job has come in. And if they need more than that, they’re probably not a good fit. And I don’t do group meetings because I’ve had them all group up against me in the past to raise wages, basically wanting to unionize whenever my clients can’t afford that.


And I said, I’ll let the whole company burn down before I let you extort me in this way. And I did. And I did it privately. I didn’t tell anyone. I didn’t go public about it, but I just stopped the company for six months and just traveled. And it’s like I have plenty of money. And then they were suffering. And then once I was done traveling, they were like, Jen, please, please, I’ll come back. So who would think that there’s a human variable of needing to stop people from organizing against you, or it’s like Adam Johnson says, you have to make sure that you’re always in the way of a deal in order to get it done. So that’s why you can’t fully replace yourself for the most part unless you sell the company, is because at some point somewhere you need to add value. And yes, you can have an integrator, and yes, you can have a CEO, and yes, you can have a CFO, et cetera, but if you notice even in a C class corporation, you still have shareholders.


The shareholders are still in the way in some way because they own a part of the company. So no matter what, you have to make sure that you’re in the way of other people just taking over completely what you do and just pushing you out. And so that is the challenge. That’s where replacing, that’s what no one talks about. Everyone wants to sell these sexy business models where you’re just on the beach or whatever, but at some point you have to put yourself between yourself and someone else to make sure you’re still adding value or you’re just going to get pushed out. So another example is, I mean, you can just live like my older gentleman, friends who just own a bunch of mutual funds and they don’t manage anything. They just collect checks from the dividends, but you have to have millions in order to achieve that.


Lemme tell you, those are the people who have the most passive income that I’ve seen, and I know this is an REI podcast, but what’s great about real estate is you can start with a relatively small amount of money and then with appreciation, leverage that into millions, and then you can become the mutual fund, the note owner or your kids can get your portfolio, but it’s not as passive as just having your mutual fund dividends come in and as know the stock market goes up and down where rents typically, there’s not as much fluctuation in rents as there is in the stock market. And so all that being said, going back to what you asked, whenever you’re managing staff, there’s just going to be all these psychological factors that are not going to present themselves on paper with your staff is always the biggest challenge in running a company.


And so that’s why I don’t do company meetings because that’s whenever people get together, and pardon my language, I think it’s a poignant word. They start bitching and then that causes morale issues. All it takes is one person to start griping and then morale goes way down. And I don’t care how well you run your company, I don’t care if you are like you have in the background, I don’t care if you’re Mr. Rogers, as soon as someone starts griping and it takes hold, it’s game over. This doesn’t work if you run a brick and mortar business. But I have doctor friends, for example. They run brick and mortar businesses, and one of my doctor’s friends two weeks ago, his entire staff just walked out. They’ve been with them for 20 years and they couldn’t have organized like that if you keep them separate. If you’re running a virtual business, that’s one of the benefits is you can manage your staff. And I tell you, that has made my income extremely passive.


So if you take nothing else away from this by keeping my staff separated, I have generated true passive income for myself because all I do is bring the jobs, bring the clients, they work the clients, and then they do a good job and then I’m out. The only thing I have to do is keep bringing in new clients because there is always going to be some small amount of attrition no matter how good of a job you do for various reasons. So yeah, if you have a virtual business, keep your staff separate and that way they’re not coming together. And it’s amazing how peaceful things are. I have no drama. I have no complaints. I’ve known go well. so-and-so did this, and so-and-so said this, and so-and-so gets paid this and I want to get paid this. It’s like I have literally zero drama in my agency with my staff now, and that has just been amazing.

Speaker 3 (26:03):

Yeah, that’s the first time I’ve heard it put like that of keeping separate in that you don’t run meetings and you don’t get them together, which is very anti, a lot of the books out there and a lot of those systems and stuff that have the organizational meetings and that type of stuff, level 10 meetings or the level 10 meetings and all that, that goes along with it. So I love hearing a contrarian viewpoint, especially for someone who runs a virtual business like that and who’s gone through almost like you said, the utilization of that type of stuff. Yeah, I’ve been this for

Speaker 1 (26:37):

Six years, and so that’s enough time to where you’ve passed some task, kissed a lot of frogs and had every problem under the sun.

Speaker 3 (26:44):

Yeah, yeah, no kidding. So that’s very interesting. Well, this has been a lot of fun. I love the answers that you’ve given. I think there’s some really good value there too with being consistent, solving today’s problem and getting it out there, being consistent of getting out your message as well too. I also like that what you just went over that was so contrary to what other people say. That was really an interesting take. I want to, and I

Speaker 1 (27:10):

Would bet you my headaches are much smaller than theirs,

Speaker 3 (27:14):

Probably. Probably. I mean, well, most people have the headaches in business, and if you just have less than them that it probably wouldn’t take much if you just had just that many less. So that’s great. I love hearing that. What I wanted to talk

Speaker 1 (27:29):

Authentic draws better clients too. I did want to share that because I know I went on a bit of a rant and a ramble about that, but let me be pointing on one point is that by being my real self, David against my business advisor’s advice, the clients I have now, I have no drama with and I don’t know why I’m not smart enough, I guess to know why. But the ones who come to me whenever I’m going through times of being very authentic and just really sharing whatever it is, whatever business problems or personal problems that I may be facing and how I’m overcoming them, I get so many people, like you said, who may not do business immediately and it scares off a lot of people. But the clients who do come to me, we have no problems, no drama. They don’t blame me for a lack of success.


They just come in, show up, close their deals, and they stay long-term customers. So that is one benefit is I get fewer clients, but the ones that I do get, I have zero drama with, and we’re so simpatico that I work hard to make sure they’re successful and they don’t. Whenever I was being inauthentic and getting a lot more clients, we don’t have meetings about Jennifer, why am I spending this money and not getting any deals and then this, and they’re just being very nitpicky, but clients where I’m my authentic self, they come in and they just close deals, David, we don’t have to have awkward meetings that make me feel like crap about myself, feeling like I’m not really actually helping anyone and I’m just charging money and nothing’s happening for them. They come in and they’re like, Hey, Jen, I did this deal. I did this deal. Your staff is great. And so that was a crazy change to me. I thought, this is self-destructive behavior being this authentic, but I just felt compelled to actually help people. And then these clients are the most low maintenance clients I’ve ever had. So I would be curious what your take is on that in terms of why is it being authentic? First off, it’s interesting. It draws in less clients, but the ones that does draw in, I have zero drama, zero problems with, and they stay with me forever,

Speaker 3 (29:36):

Which is funny because what you’re describing now is in those books that tell you to have the meetings, it’s like it’s your core values. It’s the values that are shining through that. It’s people that resonate with you as a human being. So usually they’re going to be the ones, especially if you’re being authentic and being open and honest and sharing values that are just as a society, we look at and say, it’s mature what you’re doing. You draw those mature people in, so it’s like they’re going to be the ones that sit back, they do the deals, they get it done, and then they come to you and they be like, yeah, let’s keep moving forward. And that’s the low drama because projecting that out there as well too, just from what I can observe right there. But I really like that because very much of if you’re going to be yourself, you might bring in less, but you might bring more of the people that you want to work with. That’s what I took away from makes income

Speaker 1 (30:26):

More passive because that is always my goal. Low drama staff, low drama clients where we’re just doing deals. I’m providing excellent staff who are going to make sure that you’re getting in front of as many people as possible for as little money as possible, talking to those motivated sellers, getting good prices on data, getting good prices on your loans to close your deals, and just keep it simple. There shouldn’t be any insanity. There shouldn’t be a lot of complaints and craziness. And that’s not to say there’s never problems, but when there are, it’s like, Hey, Jen, we need to have a meeting because this caller’s gotten a little too lax and they’re just becoming too rote and they’re going through the motions too much. I had to have that call three months ago, but guess what? He didn’t leave. He didn’t blame. He said, Hey, let’s just fix, let’s just fix their script.


And so I told her, I said, Hey, you’re one of my best, and maybe you’re working too long hours. Maybe you need to take more breaks. Maybe we need to load you up with fewer clients because instead of listening to the seller, you are kind of just pushing through the script. I said, someone who started out cold calling myself, I noticed I would do that towards the end of my shift. And I said, so let’s just be aware that that’s what’s going on. But I didn’t blame or shame her. I just said, Hey, because I was sitting in that seat myself for so many years, David is a cold caller. I know what problems they face, and it makes me a better manager for them. And just say, Hey, it just sounds like you’re getting a little tired. And so take a 30 minute nap, take an hour nap and come back and you’ll see how all of a sudden, instead of just pushing through a script, you’re really an active listener.


But that’s the only problem client meeting I had to have in the last six months where before God, David, it seemed like it was every day. People were just pinging me with this is a problem and that’s a problem. This is a problem. And I think that’s what led to my heart attack last year at 38 years old, was just having all these clients with all these complaints and it was just driving me crazy. And now I don’t have any of that. And so just sharing my experience, whether it’s true or false or somewhere in between. It’s just my anecdotal experience.

Speaker 3 (32:36):

Well, no, that’s really good. I wish we more time, but I’m going to land the plane here. We’ll have to do another episode too about how you got through that and coming out on the other side. But if people want to get ahold of you for your cold calling and what you’re doing there and how would they get ahold of you if they want to start to work with

Speaker 1 (32:54):

You? Yeah, whether it’s the cold calling or like I said, the loans where we’re offering a hundred percent financing on both the rehab and purchase price. If they’re my cold calling client, they can just email me at jen, JEN at rre I data source.net. I’m also a really brave person who gives out my cell phone because as a cold caller, I’m not afraid to call you. You

Speaker 3 (33:18):

Can call me,

Speaker 1 (33:19):

I may think you’re a spam call and answer a little bit briskly, but my cell phone is (469) 952-8011. Feel free to call me there or Jen at REI data source.net.

Speaker 3 (33:32):

Cool. So that’s how you could get ahold of Jen, and that’s the email. And she gave your phone number as well too, so you could call her in and say, Hey, hey, just wanted to see if you answer the phone. I’m sure you will. Like you said, who does that? Right? Who? Their cell phone. Cell phone. And then who does that? And then actually answers too. I feel like today’s age, please go to voicemail. So that was good stuff. Lots of valuable information here, stuff that you could take and I think implement right away to become these type of people out there that are consistently successful. And that’s one of their keys to success is being consistent in solving today’s problem, building the message around that as well too. I really liked your insight of the type of client you draw in when you are your authentic self versus where you might get more, but it might be more headaches if you are not. So it’s like just lots of good practical things today. So that was a lot of good stuff. Thank you for sharing, Jen. I really appreciate all that you did here today.

Speaker 1 (34:26):

I appreciate it. David, thank you so much for having, thanks for asking great questions.

Speaker 3 (34:30):

And I wanted to say too, if you’re listening to this and you’re like, oh my gosh, I’m not making enough or whatever, first of all, call Jen, you can literally call her. She gave you her number. She can help you make more money if you need to keep the money too. If you’re like, I have no idea where my money’s going, don’t know what my overhead is, don’t know how much I’m making, how much I’m keeping, or I want to keep more, you can reach out to us@simplecfo.com. We want to help you get at least that stuff in place because if you don’t have any idea, you’re not running a business. So that’s where I want to help you at least be consistent in knowing where your money’s going too. That’s another consistency factor as well too there. But Jen, again, thank you so much for coming on and sharing, and if there’s anything that you need from Jen, you know how to get ahold of her. She gave you the email address and her phone number. Again, thank you so much for coming on today.

Speaker 2 (35:17):

This episode of The Profit First for REI podcast is over, but there are plenty more where that came from. Are you ready to learn how David and his team can help implement the Profit First system in your business? Schedule a discovery call@simplecfo.com right now. We’ll see you next time on The Profit First for REI podcast with David Richter.