Did you really start your first business when you were still in high school? Yes! It was a website development company called Impact Plus. I did lots of websites for local businesses. But my first business pursuit was when I was about 3 years old and I drew arrows all down the hallway of the family home for my mom. When she asked what it was, I simply explained that it was where my office was in case she needed to visit me and got lost.
Are you single? No, I’m not single (separate story)… Although I was a wildcard in Cleo magazine’s Bachelor of the Year Contest a couple of years back that’s resulted in Ed Dale continually taunting me as ‘The Man Hunk’ of the internet marketing community.
What are you most proud of outside of your businesses? I actually have two things. I’m proud of coming in 3rd in the state for age group in the state Triathlon Championships in my age group a few years back. I’m also honored to have been part of the Geelong Supercats “team” who won the 1999 Australian Basketball Association National Championship.
So, how fast can you run? Well, my greatest Half Marathon time was in April 2010 at 97 minutes. I feel pretty good about that, wouldn’t you?
What are you most passionate about beside business creation/ownership? I am most passionate about running and am currently training for a full marathon. I’m also really passionate about helping other people and helping them learn how to fulfill their dreams. It sounds a little cliché, but I really love business. I am proud to say I really do love what I do!
The Entrepreneurial Spirit
Why are most of your companies telecommunication based? To me, it’s not about the product (the working title of my new book)… and go into every business with a sales and marketing approach instead of a strict focus on the product. I found telco industry is full of technicians who know their craft, but not “business”. This allows for our sales and marketing focus carve a very strong position in an industry filled with jargon and terms that the end user doesn’t care for.
Do you always keep all your companies and staffing in the country? I am a big believer in outsourcing as it really can increase your ROI and enhance your business model – It’s a bit of a cliché in the telco space to outsource to India or the Philippines, but I promise we are not one of the companies interrupting your family roast dinner with claims of cheaper phone bills. We outsource a lot of our online marketing and back-room tasks.Side note: I am going to be offering a one-day workshop on outsourcing. Shoot me an email or join my inner circle for info on the workshop as soon as it’s available. You’ll have the opportunity to register before anyone else.
How do you work so much so intensely, and not go crazy? It’s so important to build your business from the start with the lifestyle you want in mind. When you have the right processes and people in place, you have time for yourself, your family, your friends and all the things you love without your business missing a beat.
How do you know when an opportunity is worth taking? Well, first go with your gut. Then test, test and then test some more. Really, the only way you know if something is going to be successful is if you take the time to measure and test the market you’re thinking of getting involved in. It’s not what you think, it’s what the wallets and purses of your customers think.
What about the risk? Risk is an essential and expected component of any business venture. The key is to know how far you can push the limits. And as always, it comes back to testing. It’s not based on what you think, it’s what the wallets of the markets think. Never underestimate the power of split testing.
The MCG Venture
Where did this great idea come from? I read about the New Jersey man, Paul Hartunian, who sold the Brooklyn Bridge in the 1980’s and knew it was an idea I could adopt and use in Australia. The first thing that came to mind was the MCG redevelopment. I knew there had to be an opportunity there, and I pursued it and found the carpeting.
How did you get the carpeting? I called a friend and mentor to ask what he thought of the idea, and we tracked the carpeting down to the wrecking company who worked on the MCG. It was sitting in their warehouse collecting moisture, so we bought it and started working it into a beautiful piece of history fans would adore.
So, this venture was mostly about sports history? Mostly, yes, I am a big sports fan myself and thought this was a great way to offer fans of the MCG a piece of history they couldn’t get anywhere else. It was, of course, a great business move, but more a great move for sports memorabilia.
Was the MCG involved in your venture? They weren’t directly involved because they weren’t a party to consider as they no longer owned the carpet. They were aware though and we had meetings, so they were kept in the loop as to our intentions.
Along with offering a great piece of MCG history, also known as the “People’s Grounds”, you’ve donated part of the proceeds back, right? Yep. During the original release, we donated 10% of the purchase price of each item to the EJ Whitten Foundation. It’s a great MCG and football-related institute.
How can sports fan get a piece of your MCG sporting history? You can visit www.owntheg.com.au or call (info here).
What kind of speaking engagements do you recommend? I want to maximize the experience I have with my audiences, so I always meet with them to custom tailor a workshop before I show up on the day of. I want the attendees of a workshop to walk away with all the tools and resources they need to start implementing a plan that day.
Is booking you worth it? Will I get my money’s worth? If the rave reviews don’t satisfy you, how about my 100% money-back guarantee? If you or your attendees don’t walk away completely satisfied, I’ll refund 100% of your money.
Are shirts, shoes and pants required to attend your talks? Not always! I have been known to put on a workshop or talk welcoming board shorts and thongs.To be clear, that’s flip flops. I, nor those around you, need to see your underwear. With that said, no Speedos!
What kind of consulting do you offer? While I will do occasional single consulting sessions, I find that companies benefit the most when I can offer my expertise and really take them to the next level. I would hate to see a consult end with a client being overwhelmed and unable to start the process.
How do you conduct your sessions and how long are they? I can work to meet your needs. I’ll custom tailor our sessions to meet the needs of your business and address the areas where you need the most help. While I prefer working face-to-face, I also use Skype. Any consulting sessions I do happen after hours for me since I’m busy running businesses during the day. I also prefer Skype because I can record our session, which gives you one more resource to add to your arsenal. It’s always beneficial to look back on what you talked about.
What if I need more help than the time allows? I always make sure all of my clients are offered support at all times. This is why I prefer full-time clients instead of individual sessions. I offer you all my info, resources and experience, so you don’t have to go through the trenches to get your plan in action now.
Can I invite other people to listen in on the sessions? Yep. Invite your business partners, your co-workers, your mom, sister, aunt, the cat or gardener if you think they’ll learn something. I want everyone to understand the techniques I use so they can put it into action in their own lives.