To be an entrepreneur is a tough job especially if you are still starting up a business. You have this vision board that translates your mission to achieve your desired goals and income. The vision you had from the beginning would look really enticing and simple, but once the real process is coming into place, the struggles come in. In this digital era, hiring an assistant has been made convenient. Outsourcing has been the most reliable source to make this turnout. Daven Michaels has a pool of remote employees all ready to assist entrepreneurs with their daily tasks and allows them to have more free time. Known as the “King of Outsourcing,” he runs 123Employee and goes into details on how outsourcing can help small businesses economically hire and grow. Daven shares the different types of outsourcing and the effective ways you can train remote employees. Besides introducing his two big projects on the works, he’s got a big surprise for all the listeners.
The Power Of Outsourcing with Daven Michaels
My guest is a business expert who discovered a secret early in his life and decided that he would build a life around his passions. In the early days, he was a music and TV show producer, later an author and speaker, and now a very successful business owner, starting with a few people who trusted him to find overseas assistance. He showed small business owners how to transform their businesses by teaching them how to play ball with the big corporations and beat them at their own game. He’s known as the king of outsourcing. He has thousands of clients and his company is scaling rapidly as he helps small businesses economically hire and grow. Welcome, Daven Michaels, to the show.
Mitch, it’s great to be here. Thanks for having me.
It’s terrific to have you, Daven. I’m excited to be talking to you about one of my favorite topics, which is scaling businesses. Before we get deep into the nuts and bolts of exactly how to do that, I’d love to find out how all this started for you.
Mine is an entrepreneur’s story. If you’re reading this blog, the odds are you’ve got one of them too. I’m always amazed. I speak all over the world. I love people, especially I love entrepreneurs. I love exchanging ideas. We all think we have this big story and everyone does. All entrepreneurs have paid the price, especially if they’re successful. I started my business when I was fifteen only because nobody told me I couldn’t do it. I was an only child. I didn’t have siblings to cut me down. My parents didn’t have a roadmap. I came up with ideas, threw it against the wall and I failed a lot. My very first business was in the early ‘80s. An amazing thing happened a short while after we opened for business, MTV came on the air. It changed the face of music and it changed my life.
I was working with bands that had nothing going on, most were playing in their garage. Within about 90 days, most of my bands had record deals. Within about a year, they were selling millions of albums. We rode that wave. It was a wild time, especially at such a young age. I found myself working with some of the biggest stars of the ‘80s and ‘90s, Prince, Madonna, Cyndi Lauper, Duran Duran and Thompson Twins. It was quite astounding. It’s interesting. My girlfriend and I were watching the latest Star is Born. There’s this scene at the beginning when Bradley Cooper brings Lady Gaga backstage. There are 50,000 fans. That’s what it was like. I was thinking about that when I saw that movie.
My bands were playing in their garage. Within twelve months, we were playing in stadiums. It was exhilarating. I exited that business. I was intrigued by the concept of residual income, which now everything is residual. There was a time when it wasn’t. I was intrigued by that. I started a bread and butter business. It was a communications company in humble beginnings. Five years later, we were in 60 cities across the US. We sold to a public company. I took back stock in that company. That company got bought out. That moment in time changed my life.Luck is when preparedness meets opportunity. Click To Tweet
From there, I wanted to be a rock star. At the same time, I was exiting my telecommunications company. I became the biggest electronic music event producer in the US. Because of that built-in fan base, I could throw my own concert and I did that. I’d have 10,000, 20,000 people show up to my own concert. That got me record deals. I started writing and producing music. I had a great run and produce some of the biggest bands in the world. Their music still played on the radio station every day. I had a production deal in Asia with another producer. That’s what put me on that side of the world.
We started an outsourcing business for our own business. It was ten, twenty employees in the early days. One day I was like, “We could offer this as a service.” It was a very bumpy ride in the early days. The infrastructure wasn’t there back then. We certainly had a couple of false starts. Eventually, it did take off. We have over 550 employees at 123Employee. We are growing rapidly. It’s great because our mission at 123 is to rescue lifestyle starved entrepreneurs, give them their time back and their lives back. That’s a worthy cause because that story that I told you about, which was a rags to riches story, it sounds great on paper, but there was a tremendous amount of sacrifice.
I started my business at fifteen. I didn’t get to live my teenage years. My concept was delayed gratification. I was going to grind it out. Eventually, I was hoping that everything would work out. I could live my childhood or my teenage years later in my life. That’s what did turn out. Now, I feel like a kid. I travel all over the globe. I’m running my business from all over the planet and having a blast. It could have gone absolutely wrong. Had that first business failed, it would have taken me a decade to pay back that debt. That was half my lifetime. During that time, there were a lot of sacrifices and failed marriage. I gave up a lot to make it happen. Now, things have worked out pretty cool. I literally pinch myself every day. I can’t believe it turned out as cool as it did. It’s very humbling.
I know that you live the life that people dream of living. I’m happy that you can. Part of why we have this show is to help others do the same. What I’d like to do is go back a little bit in your story. The thing that I wanted to ask you about is this whole idea of promotion because you started doing this in the music business. It seemed as if you glossed over the point where you started designing clothes and then came MTV. I assumed that you are managing these bands. Is that what you were doing?
No, not in their early days. I’m designing their wardrobe and costumes.
How did they get on MTV? Did you have any part of that?
I did not. We worked a lot with MTV once they were doing music videos and so on and so forth. I had nothing to do with that. Literally, to start a business at fifteen, the only thing you have to have is balls because I certainly didn’t have the knowledge. I was too young. What I did was I started the business and MTV started to get some traction. We started to see some momentum. I took everything I could beg, borrow, or steal. I opened my first showroom. I did it on Melrose in Los Angeles. Melrose Avenue is a very trendy place to be. It was especially the right place to be in the early ‘80s. It was the fashion epicenter of Los Angeles. I put my business there. What’s interesting is even then I got wrong because there are two sides to Melrose Avenue. I was on the wrong side. The left side was trendy, hip, young. The right side was a little more traditional, more expensive and older, but I still worked that out. What happened was the celebs started walking by our place. They saw the cool clothes we had. I didn’t know much about marketing yet. I was one of those idiots that opens a business and doesn’t even think about marketing. I didn’t have that acumen yet.
First, we started with a fashion show. Before we opened, we had a huge fashion show, big fanfare, celebrities and paparazzi. Many people showed up that they couldn’t all fit inside the store. Some people were outside the showroom looking in through the window. It’s a huge success. The next day we open for business and there were no customers. The next day, third day and fourth day, none. Right around day four, my life flashes before my eyes because I realized I’ve taken everything I could beg, borrow or steal and I’d invested in this venture. If it failed, it would have taken me a decade to pay off. At the time, this was over around half my lifetime. Could you imagine spending half your life paying off the debt? On day four, I make the executive decision to open late, not like 6:00, 7:00, 8:00 but 11:00, 12:00 midnight. The reason why is next door to me was a restaurant/bar. I was praying that someone would get some drinks in them and come in and buy something from me. Day five, nothing. Day six, nothing.
It’s day six and it’s late at night. We’re about to close up. This woman comes in from the bar at almost midnight and buys out half my store. That was the beginning. The next morning at 11:30 AM, Jack Nicholson rolls in and buys out the other half of my store because he was going to Prince’s Purple Rain Tour. He was going to be in the Purple circle. He needed clothes for him and his friends. I wasn’t on the map, but if you want to talk about luck. When you meet successful entrepreneurs, people will say, “You are so lucky.” Most of the time entrepreneurs will take credit for their success. They’ll say, “Luck had nothing to do with it or luck is when preparedness meets opportunity,” which is true. I don’t care who you are. If you’re successful in business, you had luck on your side. You might be reading this saying, “That’s absolutely true” or you may be reading this saying, “When am I going to get my luck? When am I going to have some luck in my business?”
The way you get lucky in business is you don’t stop and you fail until you make it happen. That’s how this works. Some people hit it on the first venture or the second or third and sometimes it takes five or six or seven. As long as you don’t quit, you’re going to succeed at some point. You’re going to figure it out. Even when you have success, at some point, you’ll probably screw it up. You’ve got to build it back up again. Unfortunately, that is the entrepreneur’s journey. It’s a very different time that we live in now. When I started my business, everything was brick and mortars. That’s why I had to invest so much in my business. Now, if you come up with a business idea, you can start it right away. You put up a website and run some traffic to it and you’re in business. What’s great is the barrier to entry is so much lower now than it was many years ago, but the competition is so much higher. Also because we live in a digital environment where you can change something in a millisecond as opposed to six months or a year or two years or three.
Because of that, you have to be constantly reinventing yourself, constantly reinventing your business, constantly moving ahead of the game. If you’re in the marketing space, which you have to be. No matter what business you’re in, you’ve got to be marketing. If it’s not you, it’s got to be somebody on your staff. What I love about marketing is that it’s always changing. What I hate about marketing is that it’s always changing too. In this digital world we live in, you’ve got to be agile. You’ve got to be on your feet. You’ve got to be up to date. There used to be a time when if your business was going great, you just coast. You didn’t have to invest in your education. Now, everybody carries the wealth of the world’s information in their pocket. If you don’t stay up to date on the latest and greatest, somebody else is going to stay up to date. They’re going to take away your business. It’s that cutthroat for sure.
There’s another element here that I want to point out to you that you didn’t mention. I bet you’ll agree it was a component of your success. All of us are able to tap into an unseen force. Let’s call it the universe or universal intelligence and take cues from that. Some of us do it because we know how or know that it exists. Others do it because “We’re scared that if we don’t, we’re going to fail.” What you said about knowing that true failure only comes from quitting, which you knew when you had that store. You had this inspiration to stay open to midnight. I don’t care what you say. It’s a part that, “I’m scared that we’ll never get anybody in here. Why don’t we stay open late?” To me, I see that as that moment of inspiration when the universe spoke to you and said, “Daven, stay open late. Just do it.”True failure only comes from quitting. Click To Tweet
That’s a very interesting way of thinking about it, Mitch. I have to tell you. I remember that time. I was fearful. I could not have been more afraid in my life. My life was flashing before my eyes. I was about to screw up my entire life. I love the idea that maybe it was some divine intervention. I happened to read the book, The Celestine Prophecy. That certainly changed my life because it drove home to me several things. One thing for me personally was that success leaves clues that there’s something bigger than us, call it whatever you may. If our eyes are open, we’ll be drawn to this stuff. If our eyes are open to opportunity and to things out there that it can take us on an amazing journey.
When that happened, my eyes did open up. I’ve looked through the world through that lens ever since. If somebody is in front of me and I feel like there’s probably something that they have to share with me. There’s a reason why we’ve been brought together and 90% of the time that seems to be the case. 10% of the time I can’t figure out why we were drawn together. Who knows? Certainly, my eyes were open then. My eyes were not open back then. I wasn’t that evolved. Maybe that was the case. I was certainly fearful at the time.
We’re all fearful at the beginning. When I first started my first software company, I was terrified of everything. I was terrified of anybody coming out with a product that was even remotely like ours or showing up with a better trade booth than we would. It’s funny you mentioned The Celestine Prophecy. I read that book many years ago. I wrote down the nine insights in the book and I kept them in my wallet for years. One in particular was number nine. It was something that went along the lines of “Our purpose here is to evolve beyond this plane.” Here’s the second part of that statement that struck me and remember, when that book was written, it was a long time ago. Here’s the second part of prophecy number nine, “Technology will do most of our work for us as we begin to value spiritual insights more and more.” It’s interesting how in light of what that book predicted back then, that we have an internet, that we have ClickFunnels. It’s interesting now about how we carry the world in our pocket, which is so true.
He certainly was a visionary, that’s for sure. It’s interesting that you mentioned the wallet thing. I have to tell you, I have found that the wallet can be an incredibly powerful source. It’s not really the wallet, it’s our focus and manifestation. I’ll tell you a cool story. I had a friend, his name was Gordon Jump. You may remember him. He was the Maytag Repairman. He was also Mr. Carlson in WKRP in Cincinnati. Gordon was a friend of mine when I was young, probably in my late 20s. Gordon told me one thing that I thought was cool. He said, “When I was young, I took a piece of paper. I wrote down the things that I wanted in my life, what I wanted to achieve. I put it in my wallet. I pulled it out three times a day and reviewed them. Ten years later, I had everything that was on the list.” That inspired me. At the time, I didn’t have much. That sounded pretty awesome. This is way before the Law of Attraction and what have you. It was definitely conceptually a new idea for me. I was like, “I’ll give it a shot.”
I wrote down on little 3x5 cards what I wanted my life to be and the things I wanted to have. I put in my wallet. I did not look at it three times a day. I did nothing. I forgot about it. Eight, ten years later, I pull it out and it’s hard to read a lot of the ink. I had about 80%, 90% of everything that was on that list. It goes back to what we focus on. When it comes to manifestation, I’m not saying, “You focus and it happens.” There is a power to focus. Whether it’s subliminal or whether it’s in our conscious, it’s incredibly powerful.
I want to get into more about not with so much you’re doing now but how our audience can basically gain a leg up on other companies by using remote workers. Can you tell us a little bit about that?
A couple of things. First of all, there are two ways to look at it. One is from a lifestyle standpoint and the other is from a scaling standpoint. For the first two decades of my business career, I worked my tail off. I had time freedom, but I was busy working all the time that it didn’t matter. I was doing well financially. If you calculated the hours, I don’t know how great I was doing. At the end of the day, I find that entrepreneurs want lifestyle. When I speak and I show people how to generate more income and generate more leads in their business, they’re there for that data. At the end of the day, that’s not what they want. They want lifestyle. They want what that zero affords them. Many years ago, I sat down. I thought, “How do I want my life to be? I’ve been working so hard for so long, I don’t want to stop working. I love doing what I do. How can I design a lifestyle business? At this time, I had a lot of employees because I’m highly leveraged.
I said, “I want to travel the globe. I want to see the world. I want to hang out with like-minded people, entrepreneurs that are making things happen.” I came out of the nightclub business where I was always the most happening person in my group. I craved stimulation. I wanted to be around people that are doing way better than I was. I redesigned my life. I have a brick and mortar business with many employees. We have three centers. We have a lot of moving parts. We have over 50 managers now. Even then, I run my enterprise from a cell phone or laptop, from some of the most exotic places on the planet.
One of the things I do is I teach people how to do the same. If you’re an entrepreneur, the odds are pretty good that you’re working your tail off, that you’re glued to your desk. What I want to drive home to you is that it doesn’t have to be like that. There are two things that you have to do to break free of that. One is leverage. That makes sense. If you have people helping you out, doing your work for you, then you’re going to have freedom. Also, its processes that drive that leverage. You can have leverage without processes. It’s not good. It’s going to crumble. You can have processes but without leverage on it. Their process is for you. They’ll make you more efficient, but they’ll certainly won’t set you free. If you have processes and leverage, you can also scale a company. That is the key. It’s those two things. We can certainly delve deeper into it. On a broad level, that’s what you need. You’ve got to have processes and leverage.
A new company or the proverbial new entrepreneur spends $100 on a ClickFunnels account. He comes up with an idea. He’s now going to need some help at some point. In the past, we basically had to spend $2,000 for this or $5,000 for that. Now, you can go online to Fiverr or something and pick up a little thing that you need to be done for $50. What about the type of work that you need to be done every day? What about somebody who works for your company but not in your place of business? How do you manage training people that way?
When you think about outsourcing, there are two types of outsourcing. There are a million types of outsourcing. We’re talking about outsourcing of services for business. There are two types. There are freelancers. Freelancers are great when you want to do a project. If you need something edited, you send it to a freelancer. If you need some copy written, you send it to a freelancer. If you need some graphics created, you sent it to a freelancer. When it comes to running the day-to-day of your business, which is running processes. You want to turn your business into a McDonald’s so it’s process-driven. When it comes to running those processes, you want to have a dedicated agent.
We run into a lot of people that try to do it backward. I’ll give you a perfect example. We have people that come to 123Employee all the time to hire a dedicated agent. They had a freelancer working from their home. They may have trained them. They’re six, eight, nine months in. All of a sudden there’s an act of God. The person’s house gets wiped out or the power is inconsistent or the phone isn’t working or they are not willing to work their time zone and the list goes on and on and the person disappears on them. That’s usually when people come to us looking for dedicated agents or if they want a dedicated agent in their business. That’s what we do at 123. Whether it’s part-time or full-time, your agent is dedicated to you.If our eyes are open to opportunity, it can take us on an amazing journey. Click To Tweet
There is a myriad of different ways that you can train. You can train on Zoom. You can train on Skype. My favorite is recordings. You can easily do screen capture recordings. If you’re a Mac user, then QuickTime is under the hood. It works flawlessly. If you’re a Windows user, there’s Camtasia, which you can record on. These are screen capture videos. The odds are that 99% of everything you’re doing is computer-based or web-based. With these platforms, you open up your web-based platforms or whatever it is that you’re going to have your virtual assistant do. You talk it out and now you have training videos. You can have it accompanied by documentation. The reasons training videos are so effective is one, now you have a McDonald’s-type system. Your assistants or your virtual team can go back and refer to them on an ongoing basis, which is great. In that way, they’re not bothering you all the time. In addition to that, you record them as modules. When things change, you can simply update those modules. At our company, we have a pretty low attrition rate because we treat our employees well. In addition to that, our clients tend to give little bonuses to them, which locks them in. There’s still attrition in every business. What happens is let’s say that you give us good training. We get your people up to speed and then maybe you lose somebody. The great thing is you’re assigned a project manager. The project manager, if that happens, we can get somebody up to speed quickly.
Basically, by having videos, you’ve got this system. We have a lot of our clients that want to train on Skype. They want to train on Zoom or GoToWebinar. You should have a lot of interaction with your employee. The more you invest in them, the better they’re going to turn out for you. I do like recordings. It gets people off of relying on you and bothering you. Your videos can be played over and over again rather than you having to do training over and over again. What you can do is you can do those training and you could record those. A lot of what you’re going to be doing is screen capture videos. You do that on your own time. I always tell people that the best thing is video. The second best thing is you create a video for your employees. The first best option is videos that you don’t have to create.
When are we in those scenarios? Let’s say you want them to run your Infusionsoft. We have a few hundred people trained on Infusionsoft. Let’s say it was QuickBooks. You wanted your virtual assistant to know QuickBooks. Let’s say they are already doing some marketing tasks for you. You wanted them to also do your bookkeeping. The best way to do something like that is turn them on to QuickBooks. They can log in and watch all of the tutorials on YouTube and they can learn from that. That’s a video that you don’t have to do or series of videos you don’t have to do. You may record one video that shows them how you like to do your bookkeeping like, “This goes in this column. This goes in that column.” Otherwise, the actual training part was done by a video that you didn’t even have to do. The best video you could do is somebody else’s video.
We are talking to Daven Michaels. He is the CEO of 123Employee. Daven, let’s say that you are an entrepreneur. You are battling it out day-by-day all by yourself. You’re feeling like you wish there was some way for you to communicate with like-minded folks. I understand you have a product coming out that’s going to be helping people like that. Can you talk a little bit about that?
We have two big projects on the drawing board. One of them is VEA, Virtual Entrepreneurs Association. It’s the place that you go for all the knowledge, networking, community, discounts and resources that you need to grow your small business. I love community. We have a cool community at 123Employee, an ecosystem that pervades our walls. I like to think when people think about outsourcing, they think about 123. We have a lot of fun. People like us. We have a lot of fans. I want to grow that tribe and not even the tribe, I want to grow the family bigger. I want to create a huge community, a movement.
Our goal is to bring on 100,000 entrepreneurs in the next 36 months. We would a place where entrepreneurs can hang and learn and we want to help them out. VEA is cool. It should be online in the next 90 days. It’s super inexpensive. It’s $20 a month. It’s less than $20 a month. The average VEA members should be able to save about $400 to $700 a month on the things that they used to grow their business. It’s a no-brainer from a monetary standpoint. In addition to that, I do coaching on the platform. We have other mentors that coach as well. These are mentors who charge a lot of money.
I do very little one-on-one coaching. I don’t mind doing it. It’s not the highest best use of my time because it’s linear. I charge $2,000 an hour. There are always people that are willing to pay me that money. In VEA, you get me for $20 a month in a group setting. I’m not the only one. Our goal is to completely over deliver. We’re going to have regular events where you can come out and hang out with other VEA members. We’re connecting VEA members or connecting them to resources and to each other. Working at home can be lonely. I knew this would happen when all of a sudden it was possible because of the internet to work at home. I knew it was going to be a revolution. I knew there would be a counterrevolution. People are feeling isolated and alone and they want to hang out with other people. They want to communicate. They want to be with like-minded people that can speak their language. That’s why you see places like Regus and WeWork doing so well, co-working spaces because people want to interact. That’s what we’re doing with VEA. We’re creating a virtual world where people can interact and have a community. We’re excited about it.
It’s needed. I believe that a lot of people could get a jumpstart on their own progress by becoming part of a group like this. I’ve heard of various things like this but never anything so comprehensive before. I’m excited to see it launched and see it released in and see so many people enjoying it. You wrote a book called Outsource This. What tips would you offer even from the book that somebody can use? They have a business and they need to get stuff done. They don’t know where to start. They feel overwhelmed. Other than simply hiring someone and training them, how could they take the process of outsourcing and apply it in a linear way so that they start to relieve themselves of that stress?
The cool thing about coming to 123Employee is we have people that can help you with processes, which that’s unique to us. If you use those, great. If you use somebody else, that’s fine too. They’re probably not as good. Let me give you some basics. At the core of it, the first thing you want to do is sit down and grab a piece of paper or open up your computer. If it’s on paper, you’re going to be making two lists. Draw a line down the middle. On the right-hand side, sit down for a second and think about your business. There are probably about 1,000 tasks that you do every day in your business but only a small handful that creates immediate bottom line results.
Those are what I call IGAs. It’s your Income Generating Activities. These are the activities that you can see a bottom-line impact almost immediately. On the right-hand side, head it IGAs and make a list of your IGAs. Whatever those IGAs are, the tasks that create immediate bottom line revenue in your business. On the left-hand side, make a list of everything else, all the arduous tasks that take up your day. What I suggest you do is go down the right-hand side and circle everything that you feel could be outsourced or delegated to somebody else if it could be explained.
There are going to be a few things on there that you’re going to be like, “I’m either good at that and I don’t want to outsource it,” which is great, don’t do that or “It’s too complicated and I’m the only person on the planet that can do it.” Step back and say, “What if I had a month to do a brain dump on somebody and teach them what I know? Could I then outsource that?” Circle those. You have your IGAs on the right-hand side. These are where are you going to get bottom line results. I always recommend starting to outsource this stuff first. The reason why is if you can outsource this stuff, you’re generating more income in your business, so now you can afford to pay for your employees.
You’re going to pay a lot less for them because they’re overseas. It’s still a liability on your balance sheet. You want to get that liability out of that way and turn that liability into income. That’s going to be step number one. At that point, pick one task or process at a time. It’s generally some task or something that has to be processed out. To do that, if you’re not great at doing processes and if you’re not using our company to do it, sit down and do an outline and then shoot the videos. You’ve got a process. What you want to do is you want to run the process. There’s going to be some tweaks that are going to need to be made. You make those tweaks. You fine tune it and then it’s running, you move on to the next process. You go one by one. Don’t tackle them all at once.If you have people helping you out, doing your work for you, then you're going to have freedom. Click To Tweet
Once you’ve got through your IGAs, at this point, you’ve probably got a business that’s starting to scale even if it’s on a small level. The next thing you want to do is you want to flip over to the minutia and get that stuff off your plate. At the end of the day, you want to be the chief strategist in your business. You don’t want to be buried in the minutia because it’s not the highest and best use of your time. If you can outsource that to somebody else for $8 an hour or something like that, I would hope that your time is more valuable than that. If you can outsource the minutia, this is more time that you can free up to be the strategist, to be the biz dev in your company, to be the marketer and all of this stuff equates to money.
You touched on something that I’ve been using for years before we even had the “internet.” One of the techniques that I used was we would create what’s called the job book. A job book was nothing more than a documentation of somebody’s particular job. What we would do, which was unique, is we would take a new employee and hand them the job book of the person, who had the job before them. Tell them that there was going to be a bonus if they can improve the job book in the next six weeks. Back then, a $500 bonus was a big deal. What we would end up doing is refining these job books to the point that they were actual courses on how to do tech support, how to do bookkeeping, how to do problem-solving, how to do phone support. It was such a simple but straightforward way to eliminate the redundancy of having to teach everybody over and over again. This is before learning management systems and video recordings and things like that. It’s the best way. Do you recommend that when people begin the process of setting up their outsourcing that they record videos of themselves or do they work with somebody outside like your company to do those videos for them?
I would have them record themselves. Our people are good at creating processes. This is an important distinction. When most people hire a virtual assistant, they think that person is going to be a strategist and that is not the case. They’re going to be a task executer. They want to hand everything over and have a virtual assistant run their business. That idea is absurd. You have to have these processes. That’s why we help our employees create these processes. I will tell you this though, as you invest more time in your employees, they will over time become a strategist. That’s the big payoff. A perfect example is my assistant. She’s been with me for a decade. She is gold in my business. She is invaluable. She’s a strategist. She runs so much in my business. I couldn’t live without her. That’s the payoff. When you spend more time with your employees, they’ll become a strategist over time.
One of the things that I’ve heard about hiring virtual employees is that they come and go a lot. In other words, if I want the same person and I want to develop that individual, it’s going to be hard because they’re not accountable to you. They’re accountable to the company they work for.
When that happens, it’s when you use freelancers. Freelancers tend to come and go. What happens is you’re working with them for a while, then they disappear on you for any reason. I believe it’s the opposite. When you’re working with a managed facility, you have oversight. You have accountability. We have a low attrition rate because of that. It’s the other way around.
Good to know because that was my impression. Maybe some of my past experiences as well. It seems like there’s a wealth of information around this. I know that you offered to provide our audience with a couple of goodies. Can you tell us a little bit about what those are?
You’ll get our VA service guide, which shows you what VAs are good and not so good at. It manages your expectations. We’ll give you my five-part list building video series. At 123Employee, we’re marketing centric. We believed the lifeblood of all business is marketing. If you don’t tell us otherwise, we’re going to focus on that. We’ll give you a whole bunch of information on how to grow your list. I’ll give you a copy of my first book on outsourcing, which is Outsource This. We’ll give you the audiobook too in case you’re too busy to read it. It’s a whole bunch of goodies for you there.
Do you think you’d be willing to give a link that would allow people to sign up for this new VEA service that you’re talking about?
We could do that.
To our audience, if you get a chance, you might want to reserve a spot because this sounds like it’s going to be a big deal.
Here’s what we’ll do too. We’ll give everybody a free trial. How about that?
Free trial at VEA, the Virtual Entrepreneurs Association. We are at my favorite time of every show. It’s the questions that I feel help us better understand our guest. Here’s the first question, Daven. Who, in all of space and time, would you like to have one hour to enjoy a walk in the park, a quick lunch or an intense conversation with?The odds are that 99% of everything you're doing is computer-based or web-based. Click To Tweet
The first person that comes to mind is Tim Draper. I’m a big fan of Tim Draper. He is a venture capitalist and being in the crypto space, which I’m a big crypto fan. It’s more of an emotional choice. I probably have to take Jim Carey. I’ve always loved Jim Carey. I feel like as he’s evolved over the last few decades, I feel like he’s a modern-day prophet. I’d love to take an hour and walk through the park and hang out with Jim Carrey.
Both of those happened to be unique answers. I’ve had 150 guests and I hear certain names come up almost regularly. That’s interesting, Jim Carrey. Do you know much about Jim?
I know quite a bit about him. You fill me in on something I may not know.
I didn’t know if there was a particular element of who he is.
He’s certainly a rags to riches story, that’s for sure. I’ve seen some of his speeches and I’m absolutely blown away by his depth and his insight. I’m so impressed by the guy. I was impressed with him when he was coming out as an actor. I used to have Jim Carrey dreams. What happened was, I remember as an actor, he was in In Living Color. He did Ace Ventura and that put him on the map. He was a sensation. What was cool is back then I was in the business. I went to an advanced screening of The Mask. I got a chance to see The Mask before they sweetened it and before they added all the cool effects. When I saw that, I thought, “He is going to launch into the stratosphere.” That’s exactly what happened. I’m impressed by his command of the craft. Now, I feel like he’s evolved into an incredible human being. If he’s not as incredible as I think he is, I would be quite surprised.
Do you know the $20 million check story? That’s one of my favorite stories. For our audience who don’t know it. Jim Carrey, when he first started out, wrote a check to himself for $20 million. It said something like, “When I signed my first movie and I’m paid $20 million, I will cash this check.” He kept it in his wallet all those years. Until one day, he pulled it out and he was able to cash that check.
This wallet thing is powerful. Maybe it goes a little deeper than that. Maybe it’s our pockets because now we all carry smartphones in our pockets and think about how powerful that has made us.
We now get to the grand finale, the change the world question. What is it that you were doing or would like to do that truly has the potential to literally change the world?
Our second big project is CERV, customer service for the world. What CERV is it’s the Uber of customer service. Basically, people from all over the world will be able to answer tickets for some of the biggest companies in the world. Those big companies will be able to pay on a per ticket basis like you pay for an Uber ride. We are in beta right now.
When I was doing the research for my first book, The Invisible Organization, I had written technology reports after the book was published because everything in the book had started to become obsolete. It was 2015 when I wrote that book. As soon as they finished writing these technology reports on things like virtual call centers, I had to rewrite it again when a whole new breed of virtual call center software came out. This software would allow anyone to take support calls from anywhere on a mobile device for as long or as little time as they want, whether they’re sitting in Starbucks or in the bathtub. It got to the point where at first, we’re willing to put people at home to do work for us, then we said, “If they’re willing to work, we could work with them right on their mobile phone.” It’s an incredible project. This is the first I’m hearing of it and it sounds like it’s going to be very successful.
We’re excited about it. It’s a daunting and massive project.
Daven, this has been a great conversation. I learned a lot about you and what it’s like to work with an outsourcing company. I’m excited about reading your book, Outsource This. To our audience, be sure to get that book and the other free gifts. Thank you so much, Daven, for spending the time with me. I can’t wait until we get a chance to talk again soon.
Resources Mentioned in This Episode:
- The Celestine Prophecy
- Virtual Entrepreneurs Association
- Outsource This
- The Invisible Organization
- https://123Employee.isrefer.com/go/AUTH/mrx/ – Free Book, Outsource This
- https://123Employee.isrefer.com/go/mrxs/mrx/ – Free 5 Part List Building Series and Audio Book
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