The episode today is from the recent #growthmonday #livewithrollis
with my special guest Shelly Luhning, a Serial Entrepreneur and Owner of NCLEX Education.
We talked about starting and growing a business, whether to have a partner and more!
We also share some stories from our entrepreneurial experiences.
Helping Organizations Find Top Talent
Rollis Fontenot III:
We're gonna talk a lot about entrepreneurship today, and a lot of you may have been thinking about starting a business and, you know, can I do it and maybe you just need a little encouragement. Others of you have had a business. Maybe you're thinking about a second business. Maybe you're thinking about growing the one you have. I've got a great guest to help talk about this I love talking about this kind of stuff too I don't get a chance to talk about it very often on my show so that's what we're going to talk about today is entrepreneurship, and we'd love to hear from you, what do you what are you looking to do are you looking to start a business. Are you looking to grow your business. And if you want some ideas to on your show if you, your show in your in your line of work. If you're looking to just kind of grow your existing either a business or you're in your career network, we'd love to help you with that as well. So without further ado, I'd like to welcome to the show Shelly bet you're on.
Yes, thanks so much for having me I'm so excited to be here and like you Rollis one of my favorite topics is entrepreneurship I love it so I'm so excited to be here and yeah hopefully somebody, listening gets and watching gets a little bit motive, some motivation from it or some ideas and yeah hopefully we can have a really good dialogue back and forth
I'm excited. Absolutely, absolutely. Guys also let us know what kind of business are you in in even if you're working for someone else. Let us know what kind of business you're in this is a little community we have where you kind of encourage each other. If you're looking to start a business and you've got already got a name for it, let us know, or let us know your idea, we'd love to, to interact with that Joe is going to be helping us with the comments so she'll be looking out for your comments, and she will incorporate in that, in our discussion. I'm just curious Shelly what, when, when did you know you wanted to be an entrepreneur what, when is it that you said you know what I think I don't have my own gig here.
Oh, you know I just was thinking about that. Prior to coming on the show and I am definitely what's called I think a serial entrepreneur, entrepreneur and I've been entrepreneurial I think from very early on, and it's really interesting because I'm seeing that in my children now as well like at an early early age. But I remember one of my first jobs was lifeguarding and, and of course you know teaching a lot of swimming lessons and things like that and from that I ended up doing private lessons I thought, well, I'm working for someone, why don't I just start doing private lessons, kind of on the side, and that you know led to teaching things like CPR and all kinds of courses and first aid and at a very young age, and so my mom was an entrepreneur she was a business owner and we also have pharmd which is very you know entrepreneurial so I think it was just in me and I from a really early age and and now currently my 12 year old, she was the only one she said I'm the only one in the family that doesn't have my own business and I want my own business too. and so actually this just before Christmas, she started making those hot chocolate bombs and selling them. And she made you know a few $1,000 before Christmas and she's 12, so I think it's you know sometimes it's just in us and. And I, you know, have lots of fellow entrepreneurs that I surround myself with, and we kind of joke that you know you just can't shake it you can try to work, you know, for people and you know do things on the side which I think is great but I think, you know, lots of, lots of us know that it's just in us, for sure.
Yeah, from an early age, and you're actually trained as a nurse.
I am yes I am a registered nurse. I have my masters and I you know have taught nursing for a long time, and I have done many, many things I've been really blessed with a full career of nursing, but I've always had some kind of business on the side from the start. My husband and I have had several businesses as well so I help out with those and do the business portion of those as well. So yeah it's it's I've always had something else happening but definitely nursing is my passion and so was business so to be able to combine the two is just the best, I think, so I'm very lucky that way.
What made you What made you choose that before I get back into business I'm curious what made you choose the path of nurse.
Oh it's that's kind of a long story I actually went into business to start with, and I did a business course. And then I have always loved to help people like starting in that kind of life guarding that kind of Avenue and just really wanted to help people and I sort of fell into it by accident and I went the long route I was a homecare special care aide first I carried and then I was an EMT so paramedic, and then went into to nursing, kind of the long route and had quite a bit of life experience by that time when I decided to go back in to be a registered nurse. And I haven't looked back I absolutely have done, you know, a million things and loved, loved every bit of my career for sure.
Yeah, love it, love it. Okay, so I am also curious when is the first time you ever had an entrepreneurial kind of, I don't know, thing you did even as like a young child what was the most entrepreneurs thing you did when you were a young.
I think like lots of kids sort of probably that lemonade stand and I remember you know we lived on the farm so no one would come out for lemonade or. I remember being at my grandma's who lived in town and selling lemonade and cookies and things like that at a really young age, you know, are kind of watching from our deck, making sure we're okay. That's probably the first thing I remember, kind of, you know that entrepreneurial and then I remember like I said like that lifeguarding teen years you know helping helping teach first aid and CPR and kind of running that business, all through university, you know, one of our requirements for nursing was that we needed our CPR and first aid, and I took the opportunity to see, you know, all of these fellow students, there's a couple 100 of us were all going somewhere else to get their first aid and CPR and so I capitalized on that and said well everyone can, I'll give you a deal and everyone come to me and, you know, I'll provide you with the CPR and the first aid and so I remember that kind of you know as University trying to coordinate all that and I loved it so but I was you know right in the middle of nursing so yeah awesome early days.
Yeah, it's usually how that can come up, I know for me personally. My dad, this is this is back in 1985, so it's a long time ago, 85, but I remember to this day we got our first computer analysis with Tandy 1000.
Oh yes, we had one of those two. Yeah, I think that was our first computer both that time too.
Yeah, but he loved RadioShack he was always. Yeah, that was one of the things he got and so we were very one of the very few folks in our in our area that had computer right and I was a small from a small town, and he bought a printer with it to a dot matrix printer back in the day CNF dot matrix printer, oh yeah so this is my first this is my first gig I can remember I did from entrepreneur, I would sell a printed out sheet of paper with my classmates name on it for 25 cents.
I don't know if we know that back then I didn't know about net profit so I don't know if we're in net profit on that because it was pretty expensive, obviously, to get the paper and the printing you know the printing stuff and all that so I don't know if action was profitable or not but I did generate revenue.
Yeah, exactly. Kind of like my daughter right now I said well you need to figure out your profit margin here because mums buying all the supplies so of course it's all going in your pocket but we just need to figure out, actually, you know how much is this costing you so yeah, yeah. Since you're a serial entrepreneur and I like to think that I've kind of had that similar kind of thinking a lot of times we only hear about the successes, right, of, of a fellow entrepreneur, and we don't know about a lot of the stuff that weren't successes and failures and things of that nature. Tell me about a failure or a business idea that didn't work that we can learn from it and I'll share one of mine too if you want.
So, yeah, absolutely. Yeah, and I always think you know these things happen for a reason and you know all the lessons that I've learned from them, are good but. So I think one of the first thing that sticks in my mind is I actually had a private simulation center with a partner business partner and so that it didn't fail I sold it to my partner, but we had a falling out. And as I look back on that, you know, and learn about a few things you know that I would definitely do differently, is when you are and and this is sort of one of my huge lessons is when you are entering into a business with a partner, you know partnerships sound glorious and wonderful and just like you know wedding days, they're like a marriage right. But then you know you have that relationship with that person, and there's so many things that you know you might know them, you know acquaintance or, you know, through business or or whatever but to really have that, that business and that partnership together you know them on a completely different level. And your, your values, your core values and your, you know, principles, they need to be aligned, and you sometimes don't know if that's going to happen or not. And so I learned a lot and I did sell that business which I was very happy to do that and move on I was moving into this very niche market of of NCLEX education. So I it was the right time, but there was a lot of, you know, ups and downs in that business, and it was stressful and it's like a marriage and when you know something like that dissolves as well it's very difficult right and you have to reflect on it and think about what are all the good things I take from that and what are the lessons I've learned and so I always you know from that I give a lot of advice when when new entrepreneurs will ask me about partnerships and oh I'm going to enter this partnership and they go in kind of with these rose colored glasses thinking it's going to be absolutely wonderful. Unfortunately it not always is. And I think a few things, you know, to think about is if you actually need the partner right there's lots of partnerships that you can have without actually you know sharing your business. So, you know, and you know I do, I have many, many great partnerships now but it's not sharing my business and and I think that's a huge lesson that I've learned, and a fellow entrepreneur gave me some really good advice and he said you know if you do enter a partnership. There has to be that equal value back and forth so if you let them into your business. What are they bringing to the table, and really look at what kind of relationship do they have with their own lawyer and their accountant and the CRA or the IRS said you know all of those things that you might be scared to ask, but they're so important to know, because you know before you get into that deep of a relationship with someone. It has to be an open book. So there's no surprises along the way. So yeah, that's a huge lesson I've learned.
Yeah. And in the States, I don't know if it's like there's a Canada but there's a there's a business designation. It's called partnership, and it's where it's very formal like you're, you're doing tax returns together and everything, and how they things are distributed in a partnership are different from a corporation. So I would say this to that when you when we're using that word partner understanding what that other person means what they're expecting because sometimes it could be just a strategic partner right where we're just working on a particular client or a set of clients or a certain market or certain product certain services, but we're not actually sharing tax returns together and and yes and no profit margins and everything together so exactly what is make is maybe a strategic more than just the legal partnership kind of thing.
Absolutely, yeah and i would agree and, you know, looking at what's the benefit of both I mean lots of people get into really great partnerships and that's great but really, really thinking about that and taking a step back and maybe not jumping in so quickly. And I've done that and and I've actually since then you know had many opportunities but again worked on with them, you know, not at that business partnership level but other partnerships and it's worked really, really well. So, yeah,
yeah, absolutely. Does it amaze me It reminds of a Jamaican proverb that I think I learned this from my wife is that, to know me is to live with me. And sometimes you don't really know it person, until you either live with them or in this case do like be in business with them, then you really get a chance to know them.
You know I thought I knew you but this is a little bit different, it's nothing against you as a person, but maybe in a business maybe we're not the best match. Absolutely.
Yeah, absolutely. And just you know in when things get tough, you know how decisions are made and things, it's just if you're not aligning on those things it just makes life a lot more stressful than it needs to be right and and I feel responsible for myself and my business and of course my employees, and it's on me right and you know it's hard when you're not in alignment on some of those big decisions, it can be really stressful so yeah I just caution people to take a look and and make sure that they know you know what they're getting into really loud and clear when they when they step in. Yeah, that's good. So, before we move forward. I want to make sure that that we are acknowledging the folks who have come in to spend their time with us I want to say thank you thank you for spending your time with us. So Joe Do you have some some folks you want to pop in with.
Yes. So we have Gilbert Adams he is joining us from South Africa and he's looking to grow his business.
That's great. Okay, well we'll definitely incorporate that that's wonderful.
We have Leona work I think it's worth Zach Leona yes yeah she works for me. Yay hi Leona coming in from Saskatoon, Canada, I think, I don't know if I said that.
You did good job Joanna. You bet. Oh, I'm ready for gorgeous. He's so Hello Rollis, I'm ready. Oh, Gilbert wanted to know what is a chocolate bomb, it's I tried to explain it the best I could, you could explain it.
Yeah, I can so it's this new I don't know I didn't know what it was either until my daughter said we need all these supplies for these hot chocolate bombs, but they are a round ball of chocolate and inside of it is the hot chocolate and the marshmallows and she made different flavors with candy canes. And so you put this round ball in your cup, and then you pour over either hot water or hot milk or coffee if you want a mocha, and this ball, kind of, they call it a hot chocolate bomb because it kind of explodes and then you mix it all up and you have this hot chocolate so they're very popular here in Canada, because we get that nice cold weather so we needed all the hot chocolate there we could get.
Awesome. Okay, well, I learned something new today, I didn't want to talk about wasn't. Those of you who didn't know you just learned just shot the bomb is here. That's great.
We have Sam Miller he is from Toronto, Canada.
Oh fellow Canadian high.
Let's see. So we also have the guys if you have quit watching while you look at that Joe. If you have questions specific questions for myself or Shelly please put those in the comments because we want to make sure we cover all your questions and sounds like we need to talk about business growth, so we'll cover that in just a second here. Any other ones Joe, yes so Liana was going along with saying how a business partnership is like a marriage in many ways, and she was disagreeing with both of you. Noel. She's also joining, and she says Shelley, Shelley is awesome.
No, thanks. Well I think you're awesome to also have bill Metzler he is also coming in, he said you learn something new every day so I guess he also didn't know what a chocolate bar.
Right. One of our LinkedIn. Live in VIP VIP is just like oil so when the other so as you guys are here today appreciate you guys being here. Okay, so let's talk about business growth and again guys if you have any questions about starting in business, or if you have an idea and you just want to kind of get a little feedback, let us know we'll definitely do that for you. What are some things you think has this helped you in your growth of your businesses, first of all, you've got more than one business, which, which is I think you should mention that like what businesses you're involved in, and then talk about how you grow each of those businesses or what your game plan is for those.
Mm hmm yeah and this is very relevant because I've had significant growth in both of our businesses in the past year, during COVID so that's great. Yeah.
Thank you. Yeah.
Oh, thank you. Thanks. No, I can't see it. Um, yeah. So I think, you know, I have two businesses, currently so and clecs education is the my kind of primary business that I am 100% me. And that is a company that helps registered nurses nurses to pass the NCLEX so we have a couple of different programs to help students prepare and pass the NCLEX so that I can, I guess I can talk about them separately. The second the second business that I have is called tech seven auto repair so it's a it's a automotive repair shop, yes I know very different worlds. My husband comes from that world he's been worked for GM for 23 years and decided I think he you know kind of watch me grow and sell businesses and we he had a business prior kind of on the side always, but decided it was time to you know make the change and go out on his own. And we weren't expecting it to be as successful as it's been, and he's happier than he's ever been. And I finally you know he was debating what to do and you know when is a good time to break away I guess from your current job your security that you have, and take that leap of faith on your own and I used to actually you know lots of people say oh just jump you know the net will be there. And it's not always there for people. And so it's really finding a new one I never give that advice for new entrepreneurs starting out it's, you know, there's a tipping point and you need to kind of know when that is if you can start your business while you're currently you know in a secure job I highly recommend doing that if you can. It's a lot of hours and, you know, it takes a lot of hard work but just to get that ball rolling, you know, or have some kind of security because oftentimes you know you see entrepreneurs that quit their job. Try to start a business, you know, and it fails and then they're looking for another job. And it's unfortunate but you know it, businesses don't just become successful overnight for the most part, and it takes hard work and it takes you know a lot of learning and so making sure you have that security and not have that added stress to it is huge. So, as you know, my business became more and more successful. You know I said to my husband you know we have the security to do this I think it's your turn. So, and we haven't looked back it's been about a year and a half and he's happier than he's ever been. Which is amazing and yeah and I do all the business portion he does the day to day stuff. Of course I'm not in that shop, every day but what we started out with him in that, in that we started with him and one other employee to start with. And we're up to seven, eight employees now, and growing in a year, during COVID so we're pretty proud of that. Yeah, so, and then I guess the the the original question, I think Rollis was you know how to, how to grow that business is that the question that yeah whatever works for you and growing either the business that you want to talk about.
Um, so I think I'm gonna put it back to NCLEX education and how I've grown that again I started that you know well I was still teaching nursing full time and started doing it kind of on the side and, you know, once I had some of that revenue coming in and could hire extra people to help me, you know, kind of contract workers to help and and really good faculty. It started to get some momentum and and continue on and like i said i think there becomes that tipping point where you know you can. And I, I still teach you know part time because I love it, and I am able to, you know, hire people that can really great people that can help me with my business and I can still manage both. I think the growth is really scaling at a level that is reasonable. And I have in my former business as well sometimes scaling too fast is not a good thing and you think, Oh great, you know, your comms all this business, all this work but if you can't handle it. You know, it becomes extremely stressful and almost paralyzes you right and you have to scale and your processes are so, so important. And, you know, things I've learned is really to think bigger from the beginning. So I started my NCLEX business as NCLEX education Canada, because my target market was Canada. And what I found is it's the same exam in Canada and the US. And so I started getting a lot of students from the US who said, it's the same exam, can you help me. Right, but here I have, you know, my Canadian branding, all over everything, because I didn't think big enough, right. And I think if you can, if you can have the vision to think really big. It's great, and then narrowing it, you know, step by step, about how you're going to get there. And looking at, it's not me that's going to do everything. There's no way. so if you want to 10 times your business and I'm gonna quote Dan Sullivan, I don't know if you know who Dan Sullivan is Rollis but he is, he has a program called Strategic Coach and he is it's a coaching program for entrepreneurs, and he's amazing. And he said if you're going to 10 times your business and you know as entrepreneurs we work harder, I think, than. Lots of people do where you're, you're working really hard and you can't possibly add one more thing to your plate. Right. And so you think how am I ever going to grow this you're not, it's not how you shouldn't be thinking about how you're going to do it you're going to you need to think about who you're going to get on your team. And that has yeah that is completely changed. 2020, I have a little network of I surround myself with lots of like minded entrepreneurs not necessarily in the same field as me. And I have three other powerhouse women who we all get together and we get together a couple times a month, and they are part of my group, and our 2020 for all of us. We said it's the who, not the how. So who are we going to get to help us not how because we're all you know growing our businesses and I needed more who's, so I reached out and you know found a lot of great people for my team and that's how you're gonna grow to where you need to be. I think the problem is when you start out, you don't have the revenue to pay people and you don't have that so you do end up kind of being that jack of all trades and wearing many hats and doing many things and that's okay. But I think as you grow. And you'll need people that are, you know, more specialized in different areas, then that's when you need to think about who do I need, and you don't need to even put them on as a, as a full time employee there's many, many different ways to add them to your team and get that benefit, so. Yeah,
I agree. This is this is golden advice. I agree 100% well everything you're saying here. Before I move on, Joe, are there any other comments we should incorporate.
Yeah, so no also Shelly This is such an important message to hear, I was ready to hit the ground running and realize how overwhelming that could be without learning how to walk first. And Phil also said that is fantastic on your growth Shelley and Leona, the five clapping emojis.
I love it. No, that's good. And you know, one of the things we started talking about 10 times your business there's a there's a famous gentleman here in the States, his name is Grant Cardone and he talks about 10 x 10 x is, it's like it's kind of like a term, a lot of people use with their business, but a similar thought process is a lot of times we just don't have the vision, that's big enough. No, and you know if a vision is too small, you can't fit other people under and if it's too small.
Exactly. So yeah, if you just do the exercise of thinking about, you know, if I could have access to every resource that I could ever imagine like including people and money and things where would I want to take my business. And some people don't want that and that's okay too but where would you want to take it what is the best thing that could happen and you know what would that look like and then work backwards. Yeah. Now it's step by step of course right it's not gonna happen overnight but it's good to have that big vision I think and and really, you know, kind of go from there.
I agree there was a book I read years ago by Tim Ferriss called four hour workweek. And he puts in that book put some ideas in my head I never thought about because it just kind of gave maybe give me a different viewpoint of, you know, of work, and you know sometimes willings he says to the I've seen before, where he says that sometimes we we get caught in the fallacy of busy just being busy. Absolutely. But are you doing the right things because there's some things we may be busy with but then it may not be hitting our may not be helping our business grow at all. Can you speak to that are there things that maybe you have perhaps lost by yourself or any observations on that.
Absolutely. And I 100% agree I love Tim Ferriss book The Four Hour Workweek too I've, I've listened to a lot of audible books and I've listened to it a couple times. And I agree and you know I think that sometimes we kind of work against the current, you know, we are not all programmed the same to love or do the same things. And I don't know, I, you know, a couple of years ago did the Colby index, which is a great, great tool to find out you know it's it's hilarious when you get the report it says you've passed, and there's no test it's like this is who you are right these are your qualities. And it really looks at sort of how you work and what you're good at, and not going you know trying to do things that you don't enjoy or not good at is just it's it's not a good use of your time. Right. And so, yes. Yeah, it just you know there's so many things where I looked at what do I enjoy what sort of brings me joy that I don't feel like it's work, and yet I can be at my desk for hours but I don't feel like it's work versus what are the things that you know I'm not at maybe enjoying as much anymore or I'd like taken off my plate because it would free up my time is great, and when I, when I kind of reevaluated that along with my Colby index to say, this is why I don't maybe enjoy these things and that's okay that's who I am, what do you stand for all the time you said I think about the basketball player. Yeah, I know. Yeah, it's it's actually ko lb and it's Kathy Colby. It's after her, that's her name. And yeah, you can visit their site and you know it's you can do an assessment on there and they, you get this beautiful report, and then they actually do assessments that. See how you work with other people as well. Yeah, so it's really, It just, it just kind of reaffirmed for me, the things that I really enjoy and that that bring me kind of more life and more energy versus sort of those times. Yeah, no sucking draining things that you don't want to do and somebody else might love those things like I used to feel guilty about saying to an you know an employee or a faculty member, could you do this and they're like, I would love to. Oh that's great because I don't want to do that. So, and that's okay right and I think it is about freeing up your time and to think kind of bigger picture that takes some downtime. And if you're not having that freedom of time where you can plan and strategically Think about your business and you know some of these super successful entrepreneurs, take a couple months off and you think, oh my gosh I could never do that with my business. But if you have a good team, you know at some point that's, that's my goal so that I can strategically think about the next thing without being tied down with those daily tasks and I mean, of course, as you're growing you are doing those daily things but I think that's thinking that big picture right Who can I get to do some of these things that I don't enjoy. Right.
I find Shelly if there's something that I've been putting off for too long, I've got to go and get some other folks to do it because I'm putting it off it's for a reason. Yep. And so yeah I totally get that. Okay, so I have a question for the audience. I want to ask you guys a question. If you could walk into any painting and actually experience the moment or scene that it depicts what painting would you choose to enter. You want to try that one Shelley.
Well, I think, for me, I don't know if it'd be a specific painting of someone's but for me it would be any kind of painting that would have a beach and some sense because travel with all the travel restrictions I typically like to get out of our Canadian winters a few times in the winter, whether it's speaking at conferences or, you know, vacation just getting my toes in the sand a couple of times, or even to some nice weather so that I would teleport myself there if I could, that's for sure.
And so we'll give the audience an opportunity to answer but let's go back to the growing the business. One of the things I've noticed about your business, and I think a lot of us should be considering this sooner than later, is you employ a business development person Why do you do that.
Yeah, this was one of my people that I just added so I've added Leona to my team recently. Because yay for Leona She's amazing. And I needed someone to help me with the business development because again, I could not do it on my own I want to grow I'm in that growing stage where I want to I want to grow it even, even more than we have. And I was kind of, you know, into that US market which is huge, huge market for me. And I really, you know, needed someone else on my team who could think big, and she was the perfect person to add to that role and I think, you know, business development. That's something sometimes we leave as business owners and entrepreneurs we don't get enough time to do that. Yeah, right, and. And I think that one thing I've really noticed, adding, adding that to my team is that it keeps me on track for that because that is sometimes the first thing to go when you get caught up on your daily emails and your daily to do things and all the things that have to be done is that bigger picture development piece. And this keeps me accountable Leona keeps me in check, and we think big together and come up with things to do. And, you know, you need someone on your team that's going to keep you accountable like that I think and, you know, prior to building my team, I found that, you know, because some people are thinking, you know they're starting out, I can't afford a business development, person and I can't afford to have people on my team. I think it's really then about networking and finding like minded people that you can be accountable to each other. And that's you know I have really good friends and a good network of business people, and that's who I used and leaned on for a long time, and that was my person, you know people to keep me kind of motivated and if you don't have it within your team just seek it and it doesn't have to cost you anything you know but that time that you invest in that is so valuable. And yeah, I think, you know, for me business development and having Leona in that role, It helps me see things a little bit differently. So you're looking at things from different perspectives and, you know, bouncing ideas off each other and it's it's really powerful for sure. Absolutely. And I'll just give a tip to, to the audience here.
I don't know how you can tell me if it's used very much in Canada but not here in the US. So you have a company you got a good product, and this particular product serves a certain niche a certain market. And you find another person who is doing well relatively well that serves the same market but they're in a different business. You can form an affiliate agreement with them. Well, looks in there while you're dealing with those particular clients if my if you find a situation where my client fits in. And they could use it. I would love to have an arrangement with you, where I can share some of the revenue with you and we'll have an affiliate agreement. And so, if those customers come to me I'll make sure that that I reciprocate with paying you. whatever it is, if it's a percentage or however you, however you want to set it up, but that's another way you can bring in another business development person so to speak without actually bringing them on staff. Do you guys have something like that in Canada, do you use every absolutely
Yep, yes you bet and I have several of them set up. Yeah, you bet. Okay, yeah. And then I think, I don't remember who it was Gilbert someone was saying they wanted some growth ideas, what you could do with that is also have an affiliate program for online as well so maybe it's someone that's not necessarily that you know personally, but you can use an affiliate network, those affiliate networks. You can tap into their network, and they will find other online internet marketers that could that could sell your product. And then of course when they sell it, there's a special link they have, they get credit for it and you pay them a percentage of your, of your of your sales so instead of paying someone on your staff, you could instead of it, let's say, and right you do both. So one your staff but then also have this other income stream coming from that so maybe I give someone an idea for their business. Are you doing affiliate programs for your business if you're not you should you should have one Do you have a referral program. Do you offer referral programs to others have people who you know that they like you and they trust you. They want to refer customers to you and you you reciprocate by doing a referral program and allow those same businesses they'll also do referral programs back for you because they'll say, you know what, I'll do that for you too if you send me somebody I'll send you somebody, and then you got another income stream.
Yes, and I'll just add to that like I have a referral program for students in my program, and I get referrals, all the time. All the time from students it's in fact I hardly advertised to start with. And it was just all in referral, you know students were so happy with the program they were passing the NCLEX I you know have 100% success rate and they were telling all their friends and their friends and so I thought well I want to get back to them because I appreciate them taking the time to refer me and so I you know I would send them an Amazon card and I have, I still have that referral program, it's so powerful and you know the other thing I would really suggest is once someone you know you just need that first customer and once someone is happy with you get the testimonials, because those testimonials are golden, and I read testimonials, all the time before I you know look at anything you know I'm reading the reviews and the testimonials, and I get testimonials from my students all the time. And it's, don't be afraid to ask for it. I think it's important as growing your business to say you know what I, I'm glad you were happy you know they'll verbally tell you I was really happy with your service or your business and for both of our business and I said that's great, do you mind doing a Google review and a Facebook review, and I send them those links so that it's easy for them and like it could be the same one let's just you know get it on both places. You know, and more recently I'm doing some video testimonials for, as, as they're very powerful too so my students you know take five minutes, or you know usually know how to do a selfie and a self video and, and just get that that video content so that you can use it for later for marketing, it's really easy.
I love that that's a great, thanks for mention that we do a lot in our recruitment business where we we take testimonials from people who work there. And while, let's say, nurses, why these nurses like working there and it's incredibly powerful to show it to other nurses, so they have a better feeling about that organization. One thing I will say to, to your point about doing the selfie, is if I don't know if you have this program is called clips I remember Brian Harmon was the first one to introduce me to clips, but it's an Apple product if you have an Apple phone, you can add real life. Real Time captions. So you know because a lot of folks that they'll only read, or they only watch videos that have captions on them, because they want the sound on. And so I've used it a couple of times to refer to it a few times folks is pretty accurate. So you just taught you have it up you talk and just like you do your normal camera, your camera application but you switch over to clips, and you add the subtitles and you press the subtitle button and it will actually read out as you're talking, which I thought was amazing. It's actually pretty great.
Yeah, it's great.
No, I love this this is this is good, this is good back and forth we're getting good some good ideas between us here. Let's go back to the comments for a second here and I want to see if anybody comment on my question about the paintings.
Yes, actually. So, um, my, what my painting was the vango the starry night over the Rhone
Oh cool. I really love that one night time and stars and Noel said, Oh, she says she has that one. Oh wow she has the painting.
She also said there is an Italian painting at the Getty Museum in LA called the coming of spring it's beautiful and breathtaking. Oh, nice.
Leona said multiple streams of income are so important in a business and even financially when you don't have a business. Yes, Millennials are super important for business for us. And then she also said if they don't have time to write up a testimonial for you, you can write one for them, run it by them, to make sure it reflects how they feel, and then they can post it on LinkedIn for you under recommendations or on other social media.
Ah, yes, that's a very good idea you know she made me think of something else too. You can also get them on the phone talk to them, ask us if it's okay to record it, you can transcribe it and it'll transcribe it into a document. And then you just you just dress it up how you want, and is used that it could be a quote also we've used we've also used quotes off a video so we'll take the audio off the video and transcribe it and we'll use quotes in the videos for our stuff so thanks, this is this, this is like, I love this the different ideas that are flowing back and forth. This is really cool.
Yeah, or even take the audio that you record them on your iPhone when you're talking and pop it in with their picture and make kind of a video with your their voice which is nice Yes Yes, very good. Okay, so when you're having a bad day Shelly. What is the best thing you can do to help cheer yourself up. That happens right here. Oh, it happens yes Leona knows that I had a bad day last Saturday a really bad day in fact I even was texting I was texting her too. I definitely have bad days for sure I think everybody does and it's ironic one of the books that I just finished was called burnout. I don't know if you've heard about that yeah it's it's a it's, I would say you know for any female entrepreneurs out there it's an excellent book about balancing your life and your all your demands and how do you do that right. You know I'm a wife and a mom and a nurse and a business owner and i've you know lots of things going on but that book is excellent and it talks about kind of the stressors and and during this stressor cycle and I sometimes maybe don't have some of the healthiest things I do and I'm stressed out, or having a bad day but you know I enjoy going for a nice walk with my dog that will be one of the healthier things I like to do. I love shopping, so I love to shop and of course with COVID I haven't been shopping and doing anything right so that's right, other than the online shopping, but I like to, you know, visit stores with a door and, you know, touch things and. And I love to shop I like to get a great coffee and kind of be out and and you know see people out and about and do some shopping. So that's you know if I have a bad day I will try to kind of stop work it and do that I don't do it very often, I would say, you know, it's more, getting outside and, and, you know, stopping kind of what you're doing, taking the dog for a walk. I really like audiobooks so I'll listen to, I always take like to take some time for personal development and for me that's usually when I'm walking I'll throw in my, my headphones and I will listen to some kind of personal development, kind of book just, you know, it's still, usually it's about business. But it still kind of gets me away from whatever stressors happening. Yeah, so that helps me a lot too.
I think it's interesting that you mentioned shopping because I see Joe's he says shopping is a stress. It's called retail therapy, I think it is. I wonder I wonder if some of it has to do with the fact that you're walking because you said you want to listen to auto auto audibles the auto audio book. And then you also walk in because you like you said you want to go to play says door so you're not doing it online. Now, really.
Yeah, cuz I found this shopping online isn't as therapeutic for me as getting out so yeah it could definitely be the walking, and I think it's just seeing people out and living their lives I think it just you know it's just relaxing to me walking around and looking at things and yeah I don't know different stimuli, I guess.
So, I want to I want to just take as a couple of moments. And let's just think about some of the bases that we've some things we don't even think about because what we talked about earlier in our conversation, some things we don't even think about like profit revenue and all that. I think that when someone had doesn't have a business. They're just thinking about the idea, and they're not necessarily going through the process of how do I turn this into money. So, just for what are some basic whenever you were thinking about this, the NCLEX but oh also I want you to do with one more thing. I know what NCLEX is, but I don't want to make the assumption everybody else knows that NCLEX is can you explain what NCLEX is. Yeah, our audience knows what that means.
So NCLEX is the registration the licensing exam that registered nurses and practical nurses need to take in order to become a registered nurse in the US or Canada, so they must pass this. It's a international exam, that's in Canada and the US. And it's the same one and they need to pass that in order to be an RN. So that's what that stands for so
if they can't pass that NCLEX, game over for beginners or United States or Canada,
even if they pass their degree or their school course they cannot practice as a registered nurse until they pass that exam.
Okay, so with that being said when you're thinking about this NCLEX business for example, one of the ways that you thought about how to take this business, and actually turn it into money revenue and profit revenue and profitability certain things do, so maybe we talk about that after you talk about the revenue part.
Well, I think, first off, if you're getting into, you know, thinking about a business or trying to look at things. I think you need to know if there's a need for it, that's the number one thing, because I see businesses that start and, you know, maybe there's not that need so really ask yourself, Is this something that people need, and and sometimes people think, Oh, it's such a niche product, which can be a very good thing right because sometimes I think people try to do too much or have you know a lot of things for sale or, you know, you can do one thing and do it very very well. And so, that actually you know kind of happened with my former business the simulation business we did. We did medical simulation and training but we did a bunch of training courses and I started doing the NCLEX out of there and there was a lot of things happening at once, which can be okay but when you're starting as a startup. It's a lot of irons in the fire and different irons and it's hard to do things well and to do it all well, right, and so to pare it down and figure out, you know, what do what is my service or what am i selling and what is that needed I think that's a huge question to ask yourself, so where does the need, first of all, what do you what do you, you're basically on your idea. What is, what are you providing and is there a need for it, okay that's number one. Second thing.
Yeah, I think. Secondly, I think you really need to get sort of your you hear the elevator pitch or the, you know, we hear it referred to as the elevator pitch. So what is your first of all your niche market So figure out what that market is, yes, figure out what they need, and then figure out how to describe what you're selling or what you're doing, very succinctly because I have been on, you know, websites or spoke to people at networking events and you start to talk to them and you're like okay but what do you do.
Yeah, yeah, we've suffered from that at times with IBS. Yeah, and it's so key because you will lose people in 30 seconds, so you know figuring out what am I doing what am what do they get out of it right everybody knows everybody buys on emotion. We need nothing really so what what are you and and your pitch might change depending on who your target market is at that time, you know, so for me, my pitch will be much different to a student than it is to a dean of a university.
Right, right, right. It's the same thing I'm selling, but it's two different pitches and so really getting those elevator pitches down pat and really clear, you know who's my niche target market and what is my messaging my messaging needs to be crystal clear for whatever market that is. Yeah, absolutely. You kind of early on things, I think.
Yeah, I agree 100% and I know with me, because I just like collaborating with people and talking to a lot of different people. I'm so varied in my interest I can actually confuse someone who just like jumps on a few of my shows and what does this guy do. So that was one of things I was going through in 2020 with a team with my team and they were like hey you know, I think you might be confusing people because you're doing so many different things. So, I had. That's something I had to work on even, even a seasoned business owner, like myself, you still have to go back and say, Okay, What can I do differently. How can I improve. How can I make it a little bit easier for folks to understand what I do. So even today I have below here I got talent acquisition coach I think a lot of people can can start to think about okay wait a second, so he helps people with talent acquisition. Oh, and it's in healthcare, above healthcare below that are in your case owner NCLEX education now someone knows that NCLEX is very clear. Oh yeah, that's what she does.
Yeah, yeah and i agree i think it can get confusing and kind of muddy and the more we're in it, the more it's so second nature to us that having an outside person kind of look at that and say okay But wait, you know, and that can really be helpful too because even when I you know my messaging and getting that really clear, you know, what are we doing and when you start to provide more and more services and more and more things, you have to be more and more clear on your messaging. So, yeah, absolutely. So now you just gave me another point that I've been trying to work on recently is, even if you don't have the money for it yet. Get a buddy, you talked about this earlier you have two or three people you meet with get their input maybe even if they're not in your business to get there. What are the what are they seeing when they look at your profile on LinkedIn or your website or can they understand what you do because if they can understand what you do, there's a good chance you probably need to clarify Would you agree.
Absolutely, absolutely. Yep. And just asking you know anyone to for that feedback anyone and everyone who will listen i think is great because yeah you can you see it a certain way but then you see that outside perspective and it could be very different. So, yeah, that's good and if you don't know it doesn't have to be someone, you know that you're paying like you said, grab a friend or you know anyone you know anyone in business that you know and have them take a look and and give them, you know, get the get their feedback I think it's very helpful.
Once you get a little revenue and I know I personally have a few coaches that I use. I do value it so there are people who actually pay for their feedback but at the beginning when you're just trying to put some put some nickels together maybe you just have somebody you trust. Yeah, that's great.
Okay. Do we have any answers in the, in the comments. Joe that we can look at really quick.
Yes. So other than since you're already set the one that I've mentioned about how shopping is a stress really well. Yeah, so why for me exactly. It could be online shopping. It doesn't have to be in store shopping really like getting stuff. Okay, just terrible. Oh I hear ya has helped so much so I'm like, I'm not going anywhere so I'm not gonna buy that. And Liana said that getting out in fresh air or going lane swimming is so relaxing and meditative for lane swimming oh she's a disciplined swimmer. She's oh she's on a swim in her lane. That's awesome. Yeah. Okay. So, let me ask you a question, Shelly and then those in the comments, maybe you can answer the same question. What three words would you use to describe yourself so let's think let's think of three hashtags. What three hashtags would you use to describe yourself Shelley.
Okay, I think. The first one will be that serial entrepreneur. I think that would be that would just me. I would say a proud rn.
Ah, I'm very proud to be a registered nurse Absolutely. I think you know it's one of the most honorable professions I feel and i'm, i'm proud and I love helping students you know take that step to become a registered nurse. And I think I've been told over and over, I would say passionate. Ah, yeah, I'm very passionate about what I do.
Yeah. Are those are your LinkedIn profile.
No, I don't think they are but I think I better add them. Thank you. I,
I have to be good.
Yeah, I have to admit, I'm, I've been a bit slow to the LinkedIn world because, you know, building other other social media platforms and things like that and we're just kind of, you know, really getting rolling so like our page the NCLEX education page yeah their page guys yeah and we're just kind of getting rolling on that LinkedIn, but that's again, an area where I need to do some more work so I need to reach out and find some more people to help me with that so yeah there you go. Yeah, it's always growing, just get some great help you with it. Yeah, absolutely.
I know for me, you know, and Laila Smith she she she helped coach me upon this, but the three that we found for myself I found for myself, is I am a collaborator, first of all, but that collaboration that that relies on someone else, so I had to find what are three things that I personally can do regardless of what the other person does so that's not one of my three. So I would be one who explores and forms and appreciates others to explore things. Yep. And I like to be informative and share good things just like what we did today, but then also want to show appreciation for others, even when they when they make great contributions. So those are, I would say that you are a connector as well. Oh thank you connect a lot of people which is. Yeah.
Thank you, I appreciate that.
Yeah, I'll put that in my treasure trove as well but that's on my LinkedIn profile. Awesome.
Those are great.
Yeah, so the guys in the comments so what are your three. What are your three words you would use to describe yourself. Now, I cannot believe this this time has flown by extremely fast.
Is it ever. Yeah, we're almost at loud here. So maybe if you can, first of all, what's the best way for us to contact you and I know you and I are already connected we're going to tech we already think we're gonna have you tagged in this, so they can of course tag Yeah, you are tagged, so they can of course tag you on your LinkedIn, are there any other ways you want them to contact us or they go through LinkedIn, how should they contact you.
Yeah, they can go through LinkedIn or you can also email me at Shelly at NCLEX education.ca. So, we can put that up there if you like and awesome. Yeah, yeah, or LinkedIn. Either way, that's great.
Well thank you for that. I see, I see we got Lisa joined us today. She sees a risk educator.
Yeah Hi Lisa.
Yeah, okay. Quick, what would you rather question for you. Um, let me ask you this question here. Would you rather. If you had to be lost where there are no street signs to point the way or no people to ask.
I would definitely rather know street signs. I can talk to anyone. So I would rather as people. Yeah, I, I got that. I got that quality from my mother she will talk, she'll make a new friend anywhere she goes I'm not quite as extreme as she is but we joke all my friends joke that you know I'm starting to be more and more like my mother that way but no absolutely I can ask for directions or talk to anyone anywhere for sure. I love the people
yeah guys in the comments let me know. Let me know what you're thinking. And then I want, please give us some some last words of encouragement, any ideas or any advice you want to give us those of us who either have a business and we're growing it or those who are thinking about starting a business. What advice would you give us either one.
Okay, so I think for people starting out. Think big, but start small and just start because sometimes it's really hard to get started but I think just take that leap of faith, you don't need to quit your job, you don't need to do anything but there's lots of background work to start, so you know carve out some time every day or week and just kind of start, I think that's a big thing but think big. And then for people growing their business, I think, Think about who you can have on your team that's going to get you to those big goals so is it you know and whether that is someone that you meet or network with or connect with collaborate with affiliates things like that or if it's someone that you may need to hire on your team but I think about the things that you maybe don't like to do that maybe you aren't getting that joy from and how can other people help you achieve those goals and I think it's not wrong to have other people help you achieve your goals I think that sometimes people feel that that's not, not a good thing and I absolutely think it's that's how you build a great team and everybody has their own goals within that team but, yes. Yeah, yeah, there's a there's a saying it's sometimes it's kind of cloud I love the great advice. Thank you. This is something that kind of cloud has clouded My thing is don't ask someone to do something that you wouldn't be willing to do yourself, well I guess I'd be willing to do it but there's other things I don't like to do, and I just much rather get someone else to do it. And guess what, a lot of times they love it. Exactly. I don't want to do exactly and that's where I think I've shifted my mindset to is that, you know, something that you think would be a horrible job to delegate. They would absolutely love it and that brings them joy and that's okay and that's absolutely actually the right thing to do because you'll become more productive in other areas. So, yes, well you know, if we were if we were together in front of a crowd. I would do this, I would you know I'm sure the audience would do this. Thank you so much. Oh, thank you, great session today. And those out in the comments really appreciate all your comments today. Joe Are there any we need to address real quick before we finish up here.
No, that no other comments, other than I did put in the comments next Monday we will have Quintin Michael alums, and I have the link in there for next week's show.
Awesome. Okay, well, well thanks again. Actually, you know what I just I just saw one come up here there's a Leona here. She says a entrepreneurial multiple interests and passion Did you really say that one, Joe, I don't remember if he said that or not.
Oh no I did my phone's not coming up on my yeah so thank you for that Liana and then another for Lisa. Lisa says, Oh, she said that's a great skill she she's talking about the skill are you, where you get lost.
Oh yeah. Yeah, find a friend anywhere.
That's right. Yeah, you bet.
All right. Well, listen, thank you, Shelley, presented by the way your last name is it looming looming yeah you got it okay guys yeah Tony I really appreciate having you on today it's been a very enjoyable conversation, and thanks for sharing your knowledge or insight with others because this may help it inspire someone else so thank you for that.
Well I sure hope it does and and thank you so much for having me. I really enjoyed it I can't believe how fast that hour flew by. So, thank you so much Rollis and thank you for everyone for tuning in and watching yeah so bye everyone, thank you for coming.