Beau Henderson is a financial advisor, syndicated radio host and Best-selling author. He writes and speaks internationally helping people create success with both money and life. The new release of his Best-selling book The Rich Life – Ten Investments for True Wealth, can be found at RichLifeBook.com.
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Worst Entrepreneur Moment
- The Icarus deception… don’t fly too high – but don’t fly too low, either…
Entrepreneur AH-HA Moment
- ‘We buy things we don’t need with money we don’t have to impress people we don’t like.‘ – Dave Ramsey
Best Business Book
Beau: John, I can't wait.
John: Beau is a financial adviser, syndicated radio host, and best-selling author. He writes and speaks internationally, helping people create success with both money and life. The new release of his best-selling book The Rich Life: Ten Investments for True Wealth, can be found at richlifebook.com. Beau, take a minute. Fill in some gaps from that intro, and give us just a little glimpse in your personal life.
Beau: Well, John, the intro kind of seemed like my life. I have the financial planning firm, and that's been keeping me busy for the last 15 years, but since I had a little free time, I decided to start coaching other financial advisers, as well as working with clients. Six years ago, I started doing a radio show when I expanded the brand to ask people a little more holistically, “Instead of just your finances, what is your Rich Life look like?” So, when I'm not working financial planning, or doing the radio show, to have a little balance I try to make sure I'm both honoring the relationships I have, but continuously building new ones.
And, just for some health balance in there, I do a little bit of Martial Arts, because if I didn't work all these things in, I would really be practicing what I preach. So, that's kind of what I do. Any other time, I try to sleep.
John: Sleep is critical, Fire Nation. My goal is eight hours a night minimum. I'm a little cranky if I don't get that. – Just saying. So, Beau, we are entrepreneurs. We are small business owners. Fire Nation is tuning in around the world, looking to create viable business. So, talk to us for a minute here. How do you, Beau Henderson, generate revenue today?
Beau: One thing I learned early on in my business was there was over a 95 percent failure rate becoming a financial planner. The reason was because typically in a traditional model you're working with one revenue stream. So, early on I realized I needed to create multiple revenue streams because every month is not going to be like last month. And, if I didn't create multiple streams, I could come into some problems and even slow down my mission and message.
Some things we do: The financial planning firm – both working with clients and training the other advisers – started speaking and training. That generates revenue. We figured out how to do radio ad revenue over the years, and with some good advice and some coaching like Podcaster's Paradise – we're expanding that, in November, into a Podcast.
John: Well, I love that plug Beau. You would still have been welcome on the show without that, but man, I'm excited to be a part of helping to get your voice; your message; your mission out to the world. I know Paradise is going to do that for you, and I'm just excited for all of those people who are going to be reaping rewards. Now, Beau, you've had your great times. You've had your not so great times. You are a human being. You've had your ups and downs in business, I mean, you are an entrepreneur. I won't to talk about the worst entrepreneurial moment today. So, Beau, take us to that story, and tell us that exact moment in time.
Beau: Well, I was all fired up, and excited, and hyper, and happy. Let me get myself back to that place real quick. Okay, this is my true Icarus story of flying too close to the sun. Early on, in the first seven or eight years, in the world of helping people with their finances, it worked really good. I didn't really have any minor setbacks or hiccups, and I kind of got a little over-confident. I felt like I had maybe this Midas Touch – that I was a little better than I probably was.
Some opportunities came up, and people saw me having some success, and they looked at me as a source to partner with. Somebody talked me into partnering with them to develop a 42 house subdivision. It sounded great. It sounded big. It sounded like – I could brag about my 42 house subdivision, right? And, what happened was this was around 2007. So, by the time we got started in this project, 2008 rolled around. The market changed. The price of materials goes up. My partner, which was the builder, kind of disappeared and skipped town. Here it was, after a really good run of feeling like I couldn't fail, had a collapse of something.
I had to work through a multiple six figure debt just to work through this scenario. There were periods of time in that where I felt like I didn't even know what I was going to do, honestly.
John: Wow, now Fire Nation, this is something that I really love talking about because when we think that things just couldn't get any better, sometimes we're right. They don't get any better. And, when we think things couldn't get any worse, you know, we're wrong, and they do.
It's one of those things that's just part of being a human being. It's part of being an entrepreneur specifically. Beau, I love your reference to Icarus and flying too close to the sun. One of my favorite books, from one of my favorite entrepreneurs – Seth Godin – is the Icarus Deception. And, he talks so eloquently in that book about how it's so critical not to fly too high because when you fly too high, yes, the wax will get melted. Your wings will fall off, and you'll crash into the ocean from hundreds and hundreds of feet in the air.
But, on the flip-side, what a lot of people don't know about the Icarus story, is that if you fly too low – and Icarus was cautioned also not to fly too low, that he would get soggy wings, and the salt would erode things, and he would also crash into the ocean and die. So, there was this even ground that he had to go – not too high and not too low. And, that's the exact kind of balance that we need to play as entrepreneurs. It's so critical, and Seth just puts it so eloquently on so many different levels. So, Beau, that's just a huge takeaway for me from your story, but what do you really want to make sure Fire Nation gets from that really difficult entrepreneurial moment?
Beau: You know, as we're talking about this, John, I realized that I would have told you this eight years ago, in the moment. But, I wouldn't trade that lesson for anything in the world because it set a trajectory to be who I needed to be, and do what I'm doing now. It taught me when it comes to business you really have to know your partners. You have to protect yourselves, and a smile and a handshake just won't do it sometimes. Stay in your lane. If you don't have the expertise and competence in an area, either get it, or stay away from it. Don't try to give yourself a halo effect outside of an area that's your area. The last piece – especially in the financial realm – is understanding risk.
Before anything went wrong, I had no really good concept of risk. And, unfortunately, I don't think we think about risk until something does happen to us. It actually made me a better financial adviser having a major financial setback. So, I wouldn't trade it for anything.
John: This is one of the critical things, Fire Nation, that I always reference to when it comes to masterminds. You have to have a peer group around you. For me it's just two other gentlemen. They're entrepreneurs. I know them. I like them. I trust them. And, they make sure when it seems like I'm flying a little too high – they kind of pull me back down and say, “Hey, John. Chill out a little bit here. You need to remain focused on what really matters.” But, on the flip-side, if I'm flying too low, they're saying, “John, what's going on? Why are your goals so low? What's the next thing? What are you still excited about?” They make sure that I don't fly too low either.
Sadly, so many people live their lives just flying too low. They look back and say, “Man, I never once took that big risk. I never once took that leap.” So, surround yourself with the right people, Fire Nation. It is absolutely priceless. Beau, you just shared that difficult story that you admittedly said you wouldn't even share just eight years ago. So, thank you for that.
John: I want to move into an Ah-ha moment; a light-bulb; an epiphany that you've had at some point in your journey. So, take us to that moment. Tell us that story.
Beau: Sure. The Ah-ha moment. Seven years into more of a traditional model of being a financial professional – financial planner – I was feeling some discontent of I was going to burn out. I needed to rethink the way I was doing my business if it was something I was going to do for the next 30 or 40 years. But, about that time, a client referred me to probably the best client I've had to date – a multimillionaire here in town, a business owner by reputation. He had done everything financially right. He sold a couple of businesses. Everything was great.
I remember on my way to that appointment to meet with the guy I was so excited because whether he became a client or not, I could probably learn some things because this is the kind of guy I wanted to be. Remember the real estate story success with the stuff you have, and the accomplishments you have. I was still at a point that early in my development that I believed that had something to do with your worth and how people saw you and valued you.
And, I went up to this long, winding driveway to this guy's mansion, under a big arch of trees – the mansion picture you see in a movie – and just really excited because this was somebody I wanted to be. I got to the door and knocked on it, and within three minutes I realized that what I believed was a lie. It was like coming face to face with finding out there's no Santa Claus or something.
This guy that I thought I wanted to be literally three minutes earlier – the conversation went this way: His third wife just left. His kids no longer speak to him. So, he's estranged from his grandchildren. His health is failing. He has bad relationships with business partners. So, here's this guy that I thought money equals happiness, right? The world sells us that from the time we're young kids. But, here's this guy with more money than he knew what to do with, and he was just cold and kind of miserable. And, that's been my miserable multimillionaire story for the last eight years.
I realized I had other clients whom I worked with, and they might not have had multiple millions of dollars, but they had healthy relationships. They invested time in creating memorable experiences with the things and people they believed in. And, maybe that was my role instead of being like the other 100 guys in my city doing what I do; maybe I was suited and put here to help people get crystal clear on what makes their life meaningful. Then I'll utilize that skill set I developed to utilize their assets and resources to make sure they're honoring that, and creating a plan to bring that to their life.
John: Fire Nation, what lives do we want to live? What legacies do we want to look back on when we get to the end of our journey and say, “That was the life I wanted to live,” or, “That was just not how I wanted things to work out.” Beau, when you're talking about driving up to this guy's house, I'm just thinking of this Dave Ramsey quote: “We buy things we don't need, with money we don't have, to impress people we don't like.” And, then you end up like that guy that Beau was referring to, Fire Nation. Like, why would you want to live that life? We have to be right with our purpose. We have to be right with our vision. We have to be right with ourselves first, going forward, and realizing what's going to happen.
So, we need to take a step back. Take a deep breath. Really reconfigure where you're focusing at right now, and make sure that it's where you want to be. So, Beau, that's my big takeaway. What do you want to make sure Fire Nation gets from your Ah-ha moment?
Beau: Well, I think from the miserable multimillionaire story is make sure – we surveyed over 1,000 seniors of 65, and one of the top two things they told us was most important and the biggest concern to them was that their life actually has meaning. It kind of threw me off guard because that's not something you can really measure so much. But, making sure your life has meaning. Make sure that you're living your life for something that's meaningful to you. A lot of what happens here on Entrepreneur on Fire and a lot of my mission is because we've been sad because we've seen people sleepwalking through their lives, and know what an empty path that is.
So, live your life for something that's meaningful to you now. I want you to have money. I hope you have $10 million dollars in the bank, and you can do a lot of good things with it. But, live your life for something that means something to you.
John: Beau, what's your biggest weakness as an entrepreneur?
Beau: My biggest weakness: I'm a visionary guy, and I love taking a vision and bringing it to fruition, but what I learned I had to do to not be just a guy throwing out a bunch of good, big ideas, was I have to surround myself with tools, systems, and team members who help make sure that step by step and the details of that vision come to be.
John: What's your biggest strength?
Beau: It's almost a converse of that. My biggest strength is probably collaborating with others, and promoting the people and things that I believe in.
John: Of all of the things you have going on right now, Beau, what's the one thing that has you the most fired up today?
Beau: This is good question because it's shifted over the last year. For the first eight years or so of me having the Rich Life mission, which started with helping people live their definition of a rich life – the past year it took another level. It kind of evolved a little bit. What's happening now is I've been partnering with a national non-profit junior achievement going into school systems. I have this mission that whether you buy a book for me, or you're a client, or working on some level with the rich life group – you're helping me fund getting people into these school systems to train middle and high school kids with the basics of financial literacy, so a lot of the problems and lessons we talk about – like we talked about today – they learn upfront instead of life teaching them.
John: Fire Nation, you're going to get these type of value bombs, and so much more, when we come back and hit the Lightning Round. But, first, let's take a minute to thank our sponsors. Beau, are you prepared for the Lightening Round?
Beau: Let's do it.
John: What was holding you back from becoming an entrepreneur?
Beau: You know, John, I was one of those weird kids. My mom will tell stories of an elementary school – she got a call from the office because I was selling powdered Gatorade to the kids at break. So, I think I've always had this entrepreneur gene. The couple times I tried corporate I was bored silly within a couple of years, and realized that that just wasn't the place for me.
John: What is the best advice you've ever received?
Beau: The best advice that has helped me the most is: “Look at life like a school.” What I mean by that is if something happens not the way I want, or even something bad, or sometimes even something devastating – is to be able to do a mind shift and say, “You know what, there's something here to learn. There's some kind of lesson here to learn, and if I get it it's actually a good thing because now I'm a better, more prepared person.”
John: What's a personal habit, besides getting a good night's sleep, that contributes to your success?
Beau: I believe my job is to get up everyday – it's the coolest job in the world, by the way – is to get up every day and make friends. If I do that effectively, all of these other missions, and dreams, and things we're talking about fall into place. So, one of the things I do is I try to make sure that I'm connecting, and making five new friends a week. And, that's severed me well.
John: Well, Beau, I hope I'm one of those five this week.
John: Share an internet resource like Evernotes with Fire Nation.
Beau: With all of the projects and things to do, that come with these businesses and missions – it's project-heavy. So, one of the things I've recently been using is this Pomodoro Pro Timer to make sure I'm batching, and staying on task with these projects.
John: Beau, if you could just recommend one book for our listeners to join The Rich Life on the bookshelf, what would that book be, and why?
Beau: A good book that's come up a lot recently with clients who are business owners – and, I've used training or financial advisers – is by a friend, Frank Bria, called Scale: How to Grow Your Business by Working Less. And, really, the point of this book is I think a lot of people out there have something they want to do, or they have a great idea, but you have to have a blueprint for the systems and processes to actually be able to make money with it. I think there's a gap there that Frank fills with this book.
John: I was just hanging out with Frank a couple of weeks ago at Webinar Ninja Live. He's a great guy.
Beau: Frank is a rock star.
John: Fire Nation, I know you love audio, so I teamed up with Audible. If you haven't already, you can get an amazing audiobook for free at eofirebook.com. Is The Rich Life in Audible, Beau?
Beau: It is on Audible. The Rich Life: Ten Investments for True Wealth.
John: Killer. Beau, this is the last question of the Lightening Round, but it is a doozy. Imagine you woke up tomorrow morning in a brand new world, identical to earth, but you knew no one. You still have all of the experience and knowledge you currently have. Your food and shelter is taken care of, but all you have is a laptop and $500.00. What would you do in the next seven days?
Beau: For the next seven days, I would do what I've done a couple times when I was in a mode to reinvent, or maybe even change the course of my path, and I would look up every business school, church organization group in a 20 mile radius of wherever I was in this new world, and I would offer to do free education on Financial Basics, because that's something I know. That's something I know that people need. They're hungry for information on those topics. I also know that if I'm speaking to groups, a certain percentage of those people will raise their hand and ask me to work with them outside of the presentations. So, that's one this I could do to start from scratch, and rebuild a thriving firm over time.
John: And, I'm sure you'd make five friends that week, too.
John: Now, Beau, let's end on fire with a parting piece of guidance. The best way that we can connect with you, and then we'll say goodbye.
Beau: Well, you deserve to live rich. All of the things we've talked about today – if you have that thing inside you that's, “I'm meant for something bigger. I'm meant for something more,” don't sleepwalk through life and miss it. Take action. Create a plan, and you can course correct as you go, but I personally believe if there is anything we take away from this conversation that you hear me say, it's that you were born to live your definition of a rich life. If you would like to find out more about what's going on with me; the radio show; the books – you can go to beauhenderson.com, or check out the book check out the book directly at richlifebook.com.
John: Fire Nation, you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with, and you've been hanging out with BH and JLD today, so keep up the heat. Head over to eofire.com. Just type 'Beau' in the search bar. His show page will pop right up with everything that we've been talking about today. Of course, his website beauhenderson.com is going to be waiting there for you to type on in, and richlifebook.com. You can go directly there, as well. Beau, I want to thank you for sharing your journey with Fire Nation today. For that, we salute you, and we'll catch you on the flip-side.
Beau: Thanks a lot.
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