Amy Kauffman believes everyone is uniquely created on purpose, for a purpose. She is passionate about creating environments for people and companies to thrive. Aligning with her beliefs on a large scale, she founded Givily, a cloud-based platform that helps companies manage donation requests and strategic giving.
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John Lee Dumas: Fire Nation, the countdown has commenced, John Lee Dumas here and I am fired up to bring you our feature guest today, Amy Kauffman. Amy, are you prepared to ignite?
Amy Kauffman: Yes.
John Lee Dumas: Al right! Amy believes everyone is uniquely created on purpose for a purpose. She is passionate about creating environments for people in companies to thrive; aligning with her believes on a large scale, she founded Givily, a cloud-based platform that helps companies manage donation requests and strategic giving.
Amy, giving a Fire Nation just a little insight so share more about you personally, expandable on the biz
Amy Kauffman: Al right so I am from Upstate New York, I love life and business and people and so thankfully I get to just tackle all three every day of my life so that´s awesome.
Givily is my connection with corporations and, so I provide software that they can easily manage on each request from all those nonprofits that are asking for products and beverages for their fundraisers and I do some business coaching and I don´t know I think that´s a little bit about Givily and yeah.
John Lee Dumas: And you are Upstate New York and you survived all your snow storms this year so far.
Amy Kauffman: So far yea, yea, yea.
John Lee Dumas: So Amy we are going to talk about your journey today but you are number two of five foundation ear, so I am not really sure if that is a word but I am using it so let’s go with it.
Amy Kauffman: Awesome.
John Lee Dumas: Take just about a minute and just kind of share your journey into finding the foundation, I love that connecting of the dots type of thing and, you know, again keep it short because we have a lot to talk about but we´ll love to hear that.
John Lee Dumas: Sounds great, so I had an idea for software but I had no software experience at all and I really kind of opened my mouth rashly and tell my friend, oh I will build you something, so at that moment when I left the coffee date with my friend committing to build this software platform that I had no idea how to do or just I had no clue, I went to the internet and I started searching and came across the foundation; I watched the short video that was online, this was about two years ago now and said that is it, signed me up and was it so I didn´t hear it on a podcast I just went hunting for it cause I desperate needed a viable kind of quick solution to create a software company.
John Lee Dumas: Some times when you cast the nets a fish appears.
Amy Kauffman: Yes.
John Lee Dumas: I just got to made that up but, let’s go with it.
So Amy let´s talk about your journey, we have a lot to cover today and we are going to have a lot of fun and we have some pretty cool things to share with you Fire Nation at the end of this episode specifically but first Amy, you´ve had a really interesting journey, you´ve had a great journey but I want you just to break it down for us, what was your worst entrepreneurial moment? Take us there, tell us that story.
Amy Kauffman: I mean the worst one, there is like thirty that come to mind and then there are more to come to mind. So I preface this, with every, every bad thing that I could think of I am always, I come out the other side with an amazing lesson, I am better off for it and so in one way it is like there is no worst experiences.
Having said that, there have been a couple of really dark points in life and I think it is a much preneur when you are striving and searching and you just want to make something, those moments when things are dark and you are lacking clarity and you just, you don´t even know how to help yourself, you know, you can try to read a book, you can try to go do yoga, you can try to eat well, you can exercise, you can talk to the right people and then just seems like this black cloud lingers and so there is.
A few years ago that was right the point where I was at, I was just at this crisis of meaning I had just no idea what I was put on the earth to do and I know I was called to do something and it was awful to be feeling like I was wasting myself and I didn´t know what to do and I just remember thinking it is hard is to steer a parked car keep moving, just keep moving just keep having those conversations and keep talking with people and keep reading those books and the fog will lift and clarity will come.
And, it was at that time that an idea came to mind for a business and I thought well I don´t know if this is it but it is it right now and so I am going to move on it and trough that business is where Givily came from, so I am a firm believer in moving and taking action even if it, even if you don´t know what the right action to take.
John Lee Dumas: So, on what I really want you to focus here on Fire Nation is exactly what Amy reared a few times, taking action, and you know it really reminds me Amy to a time when I was deployed to Iraq and I was a platoon leader in charge of sixteen man and four tanks we were about to go in to a firefight, it was night time like, bullets were flying and things were happening, it was crazy and here I am you know a little young lieutenant trying to be George Pat, you known trying to come up with the best idea in the world to win this battle, win the war and I was just clueless and luckily my platoon sergeant grabs me he just shakes me and he says L.T. a good decision now Is better than a great decision later.
Because we might not me alive to make that great decision later, so get of your but and make a flipping decision, and that was you Amy, you didn´t know that was going to be your best decision in the world you didn´t think that it was going to be a grand slam, absolutely you just knew that you had to get the wheels moving you had to start and again, just cast that net out there, the things you start to tracking the magnet that you become for other people in similar situations and places.
And the more Google searches you do of how can I find myself you know, the more times is likely that foundation.com is going to come up and it is like, wow that was your next step into just this huge opportunity that you found.
Amy Kauffman: That is right.
John Lee Dumas: So Great story Amy, and let’s get really specific on this next one because I really want you to take us to the moment, the actual day, I want to know if it was raining out, if it was snowing out, I mean it is Upstate New York so It was probably snowing.
Amy Kauffman: Well, yea.
John Lee Dumas: Take us to that story of that aha moment, that epiphany, that light bulb that went on, tell us that story and then walk us through the steps that you took to turn that idea into success.
Amy Kauffman: Eighteen different thoughts just flew in my mind so just let me see if I can make clarity of them ok.
First of all I never thought of myself as an entrepreneur so I probably could articulate a moment were I was like oh I am an entrepreneur, oh interesting, and it was probably a year until having a business before that thought ever occurred to me.
I was just chasing it out and then looked up to see a title sign hanging above my head but there was one point where I think it was a really aha moment, just a life moment, I was on the Home Depot parking lot in my car, it was raining I think it was the fall and I was running another business, again I got the idea for Givily while I was running this other business and I was on the phone with my uncle and I was hamming and hawing about how I was going to pull both of this business forward and off course I had to do that right? I have started the first one and I just could not give up on it, you know, just die hard and keep going and he said this question that I´ll just never forget.
He said are you moving that business forward, the, first one, because you are passionate about it or because you don´t want to quit? And light bulbs and sirens and everything went off at that moment it was like, ok we are closing sharp on that business and we are moving forward. But I ask myself that question and I asked other people that question too you know, are you doing this because you are passionate about it or because you don’t want to quit? Or is a re running to something or from something.
So that was probably one of the big aha moments for me in that moment but then also the question that I can ask myself over and over that provides repeated aha moments.
John Lee Dumas: We have this thing Fire Nation about capital that we have already invested in our selves, that capital could be money, it could be time, it could be resources, damn it, it could be any number of things but once that we have invested in any or some or all of those things that I just shared into a business we feel like walking away is just a huge waste of time when the flip is actually true to keep going forward in a business that you don´t have the passion for it, that is not clicking for any number of reasons that is your waste of time.
Being able just to shred that skin like a snake and say you know what I am getting rid of this anchor and I am just going to go forward in something that I am so passionate about that I am so excited that I can just dedicate all my passion towards that is the ticket but you know, we have this thing Amy called FOMO fear of missing out and a lot of times we are thinking , wow I am digging in this hole and the reality is that the only way that I can get out of this hole that I am digging in is to stop digging, but what if one more shovel falls and I strike gold I am terrify of missing out on that gold that might be down there and it is just crazy it is that FOMO.
Amy that is my big take away what is that one lesson that you really learned that you want to share with our listeners?
Amy Kauffman: This is a journey, right? And so if me hanging on to that business it wasn´t taking a journey it was making a bolder of myself and of the business and if we are really going to move forward and grow and all this things we have to kind of scale into up to a 30 000 foot view and say well it is a step of the journey.
The step of the first business is what got me to Givily and all along the way in my business there has been pivots and if we hang on to something too tightly we literary will miss the beauty and I want to say the magnificence’s, if that is the right word, like the magnificence’s of what could be just because we have decided that the first thing was we should hang on to this
So just been willing that is not failure to pivot, is not failure to take step and realized that this is a beautiful thing it was brought as part of the journey to level us up, to take us to the next step, to the next business, to the next relationship, to the next experience and been willing for that to be okay I think this is probably the biggest lesson I took from it.
John Lee Dumas: How about this mind set shift, how about it takes courage to quit, you need to be courageous to walk away from something so be courageous Fire Nation, give yourself permission to be courageous and quit and walk away.
If I didn´t quit law school I can´t even just tell you how unhappy I would be right now and that took courage to walked away and disappoint the family and disappoint the friends, but it takes courage Amy.
Amy Kauffman: Yea, and I think you make a really good point about this courage so we are caught out behind the I don´t want to disappoint people but honestly you and I both know, and any one of you listeners knows truly if we are honest with ourselves we know in that moment weather is courage or fear and if it is fear sometimes we will mask it by kind of using other people scapegoats but if we are really honest with ourselves we just have to say it is got to be courage right now; I have got to do this it is the right thing it´s the best thing and no hide behind other people and other excuses so, absolutely.
John Lee Dumas: Yea in just one point you just nail this, I can´t remember the exact title but if you Google something like this is either like the five or seven or ten biggest regrets of the dying and by far the number one regret was that I wish I have followed my heart not what others said or thought I should do, that´s the biggest regret of the dying Fire Nation, is that they didn’t follow their own intuition but instead they let outside influences steer their life, their one life that they had to live.
So Amy we are going to move in to what I like to call the one minute mind sets, I am going to ask you five questions —Okay. Five insights into your mind girl — Oh yea. Sixty seconds each ish you know, give or take and number one is I daily what would the first sixty minutes of your day look like?
Amy Kauffman: Perfect okay so I wake up and I have 16oz. of hot water and I go through a morning routine where I read my affirmations, I read my goals for the quarter and I read my I call it prepping for successfully year, basically a document that I wrote up that at the end of the 2015 what would need to take place for me to look back and say this is an amazing year so I wrote that up, I read that every morning, I read my bible, I send of the e-mail to my answerability partner letting him know exactly what is on my agenda for the day and I have a great breakfast.
John Lee Dumas: Now quick question, how hot is hot and why hot water?
Amy Kauffman: I have read a book about eight years ago called the body cries for water something like that and so ever since I have only miss one day of not having hot water first thing I think probably ten fair is to say that I should drink cold water to spark my system or something but warm water is a little bit more gentle in the morning and I put it into my microwave for two minutes so it is hot is not lukewarm it is definitely hot water and, so it is nice to drink and start the day with hot water and my affirmations and stuff.
John Lee Dumas: My mentor Amy calls this an inner bath, why do we always focus on the outer bath the shower but we need an inner bath we also need to moisture the inside.
Amy Kauffman: Loved it and I am going to write that down, perfect.
John lee Dumas: Sean Stevenson, so Amy what is your biggest weakness as an entrepreneur?
Amy Kauffman: I go fast so fast that I don´t stop and evaluate o re evaluate and I am often enough, I should say that, often enough, I am an action taker, I am a driver and I try to be efficient so I just would just go crazy and go fast which gets me a lot of places really fast and it has definitely been an asset but it is also a problem because I don´t stop and strategies enough or I haven´t put good systems in place until I am at the point where oh boy this is super crucial don´t have a system in place for this and if I had stopped six weeks ago and just evaluated things I could have projected that I was going to need a system so I have now built it into my schedule every Friday to literally pause myself and stop and look at varies aspects of my life and business and say okay how was this past week, what it needs to happen this coming week, what can I anticipate, what systems need to be created but that is definitely my weakness.
John lee Dumas: Amy every time you find yourself moving just a little too fast I just want you to think of that Simon and Garfunkel song , slow down you move too fast, you´ve got to make the morning last.
Amy Kauffman: I will I´ll think of you first.
John lee Dumas: Okay me first then Simon and then finally Garfunkel.
So Amy what is your biggest strength as an entrepreneur?
Amy Kauffman: I have vision, I see it, and it is possible.
John lee Dumas: What is that one habit that you wish you had?
Amy Kauffman: I wish that I had the habit of watching a short video every day for educational and inspirational purposes for weather is a telex or some kind or resource that’s the one I wish I had.
John lee Dumas: What is the one thing that has you more fired up than anything else right now?
Amy Kauffman: purchasing an NFL team.
John lee Dumas: What? You are purchasing an NFL team?
Amy Kauffman: Yes.
John lee Dumas: Don´t tell me that you are into Patriots.
Amy Kauffman: I don´t know what is going to be for sale when I am ready for it but yes, I aim to be and I plan to be the first female in history to purchase an NFL team and Condoleezza Rice is interested in this as well, she´s got a bit of a network on me but I am still chasing it down.
John lee Dumas: Get it girl! Well you know that Bob Kraft of the potentially by the time we hear this Fire Nation, super bowl champions winners the Patriots, did I just yanks the Patriots? Oh my God, because this has been recorded before on the interview but I am going to let that stay because even if they don´t pull through it, it is still an amazing season. Maybe you should start reaching up to him and kind of let him, you know, plant some seeds and let it be known that you want to be a Patriots owner someday I mean, you are in New York thou I mean, are you going to battle Gary Vaynerchuck for the Jets?
Amy Kauffman: You can have the Jets, no it´s all right, it´s all right. I think maybe more entrepreneurs out there owned some teams and it could really be a really happy fun competition. So yea if anybody has any good connections on the NLF and they wants to be generous no me then I am happy
John lee Dumas: Mark Cuban has done really great with the Mavericks and he is fun, he is front row he makes a kind of a full of himself sometimes but you know is fun and that´s cool,
So Amy, I am not going to let you go jet, you are going to be joining me in the lighting round but before we get there we are going to take a minute to thank our sponsors.
Amy welcome to the lighting round, were you get to share incredible recourses and mind blowing answers does that sounds like a plan?
Amy Kauffman: Yes.
John Lee Dumas: What was holding you back from becoming an entrepreneur?
Amy Kauffman: Me, I didn´t have an idea I didn´t know that I could be an entrepreneur I just thought well the natural normal thing that people to around me is becoming an employee so I tried that and that didn´t work.
John Lee Dumas: What is the best advice you have ever received?
Amy Kauffman: Do it right from you down, that sounds really weird but I was complaining one time to a mentor of mine of how something has happened to me or someone higher ranking and she said ok let this be a lesson to you and always do it right from you down, down isn´t like a derogatory thing but just do it right then if I know to do right then I need to do it to whomever and it doesn’t matter what´s done to me so I most probably beat this.
John Lee Dumas: Share a personal habit you do have that you believe contributes to your success?
Amy Kauffman: Inbox pause, it´s a Google plug in for Gmail and I push the button every night before I go to bed and that means that I have no incoming e-mail into my inbox that I can see first thing in the morning so it´s my agenda, I can still be in my inbox doing my works, sending out e-mails and I am on offence not defense.
John Lee Dumas: I love that because Fire Nation getting up and immediately having e-mails to respond to that puts you in other peoples agendas, don´t get on other peoples agendas!
And Amy, this kind of lead us in to the next question, I mean, maybe we could add to this but do you have any internet resources like ever note like inbox pause that you can share to our listeners?
Amy Kauffman: I actually love you tube and then search for motivational videos and I have those playing a lot so I will say is my favorite internet resources motivational videos on you tube.
John Lee Dumas: Going to put you on the spot here, shout out a motivational video you recommend.
Amy Kauffman: Oh, I don´t even know what they are called I just click in them, anything with Less Brown is great and you will see Will Smith is on there too, they are like four to six minutes videos so anything like that grab it.
John Lee Dumas: If you could recommend one book for our Listeners what would it me and why?
Amy Kauffman: I would say the bible, I would say that it contains vast amount of wisdom, hope and peace.
John Lee Dumas: Well Fire Nation I know that you love audio so if you haven´t all ready you can get an audio book for free at eon fire book.com I haven´t actually look but maybe there is an audio version of the bible waiting for you Fire Nation.
Amy this next question is the last of the lightning round but is a duce
Amy Kauffman: Oh man
John Lee Dumas: Imagine you wake up tomorrow morning in a brand new world. Identical to earth but you knew no one you still have all the experience of knowledge you currently have your food and shelter taking care of but all you have is a laptop and $500.00, what would you do in the next seven days.
Amanda Kauffman: I would go online and find the other dreamers, find the other people that are pushing the limits that I are doing crazy thing as I would look at the headlines and see who people think is crazy and I would reach out and connect with them.
I have $500.00 I would fly someplace and meet people and maybe go to another fall game.
John Lee Dumas: I don´t know if that quite get you to super bowl 49 but who knows you might get lucky with a scalper maybe a half time or something. So Amy lets end today on fire whit you sharing one part a piece of guidance the best way that we could connect with you then we will say goodbye.
Amy Kauffman: My peace of guidance, gosh, you know entrepreneur on fire and I was thinking about this titles that man sometimes you just feel like it’s not like a fire glowing is more like I am fire about to be ashes. — Burned out. Yea, but you know there is a story in Greek mythology about the phoenix that when, it just, it burns and in order for it to rise out of the ashes it has to be recreated right so, it comes out different than it went in, rebirth, recreated.
I would just say that for all the people listening that just recreate yourself we are going to depths we are going to cycles we are going to fail I say fail they are all this lessons that we are learning we are going to trip and fall in our face, we are not going to do a ton of things right, keep moving and recreate yourself the person that got you to where you are today cannot enter tomorrow and level up, and so we have to just keep braking those barriers, and you don´t have to have all the answer to the questions when you start, I think there is that frase oh you don´t have to know all the answers.
I would just say you don´t even have to add any, just start moving because the answers come while you are moving, that´s my peace of guidance, what else was I supposed to get here.
John Lee Dumas: Show us the best way that we can connect with you and also I think you have some pretty cool thing to share about the foundation specifically.
Amy Kauffman: Okay, so if anyone wants to get in touch with me firstname.lastname@example.org Givily spelled G-I-V-I-L-Y. and givily.com is the best way to reach me.
And the foundation yes the have got some goodies here, so you want to go to the foundation.com4/fire and I am all about goodies because I am from Upstate New York and it’s a little bit hick here and so when I see like free signs or bargain sings I am all over it. So this had a lot of big free and bargain signs hanging above it and one, when you go to the foundation.com/fire you are going to get three different things.
You are going to get a question, the one question that you need to find a profitable software business idea and how to use it so that is the question you are going to get and you are going to get idea extraction quick guide and apparently I have not seen this myself but it is six pages of tactics so for all the detailed people out there, that is something you want to get hold on.
And last but not least is going to be an ask me anything party with five entrepreneurs on fire from the foundation so I´m going to go there because the other four are going to have a lot of thing to say and a lot to learn from so join the party at the foundation/fire.
John Lee Dumas: And that was something cool that Dan just recently share with me is that they are going to do a live hangout and ask me anything with all five of them around 30 days after this podcasts air so Fire Nation go to the foundation.com/fire all this gifts, all this goodies all this take away you can ask me anything online, hangout it’s going to be a blast.
And Fire Nation you, yes you, you are de average of the five people that you spend the more time with, and you have been hanging out with Amy and JLD today so keep of the heat and head over eonfire.comjust type Amy in the search barand the page would pop up right on. And Amy, thank you for sharing your journey with fire nation today, for that girl we salute you and we catch you on the flip side.
Amy Kauffman: Sounds great!
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