Buy Time

Lessons from the Deep End: A Personal Growth Journey in Entrepreneurship

September 07, 2023 Jacob K. Mead Season 1 Episode 10
Buy Time
Lessons from the Deep End: A Personal Growth Journey in Entrepreneurship
Show Notes Transcript

What if you could turn a childhood hobby into a business? That’s exactly what I, Jacob K Mead, managed to do when I taught myself web development in high school. This episode of the Buy Time podcast allows you to step back with me into my past and get to know the journey that led me to become a renowned business coach and consultant. I share my humble beginnings, the challenges, the triumphs, and lessons learned in the process. You'll hear the exciting tale of how I turned a curiosity into a profitable venture in my small town and the essential role of mentors in shaping my career.

As the narrative unfolds, I'll take you through my experiences as a lifeguard and swimming instructor, a job that revealed my love for helping others. Take inspiration from the sense of accomplishment I felt when I saw the kids I taught make progress – a feeling that still get in my coaching and consulting current career. This episode is an exploration of personal growth and its transformative power. So, prepare to be inspired by a heartening journey and to understand how learning from each experience can shape your path. Whether you are an aspiring entrepreneur or someone intrigued by personal growth stories, this episode is definitely worth a listen.

Until next time... Follow on Instagram @buytimepodcast
Follow Jacob K. Mead on all the socials @jacobkmead

Speaker 1:

Hey everybody, this is Jacob K Mead and this is the Buy Time podcast, where we discuss everything there is to know about buying back your time. Be sure to like and follow and share with somebody who needs to buy back their time. Enjoy today's episode. This episode is brought to you by Hello Cookie, a bite above all the rest, located in Ankeny, iowa. Custom-sugar cookies for your events, corporate events or even birthdays. Hello Cookie, ankeny, iowa. Welcome back to another episode of the Buy Time podcast.

Speaker 1:

I'm your host, jacob K Mead, and today is super exciting because I'm going to be diving into my past and my history and kind of what made me want to become a business coach and consultant and how did I get there, what were my struggles and how did I overcome that. So first let's go way back and let's talk about my high school days. So in high school, I wasn't really that kid that would party, I would go home and I would study. And that was me I would go home and I would study, and at the time, youtube was actually just getting to launch, and so, since YouTube was just coming out, I found that there's a lot of information on YouTube. You could watch a lot of videos, a lot of educational videos, and that's what I did. And so I would watch a lot of educational videos on website and web development and I would watch these videos over and over. And so there came a time where I said hey, listen, I actually want a website and I want this website to do this and I want to have videos on there and I want it to look really cool. So I went to my dad and I said hey, this is kind of the website I want. Do you think it's something that we can put together? And he goes I'm not going to do it for you. And I was like oh man, I don't know how to do this. And he goes but I will buy you the tools so that you can do it yourself. And so to me I heard well, I can't do this, and I was thinking there's no way that I can do this, but he bought the tool for me anyway. So he went out and bought Microsoft Expression Web at the time, and then what I did next was I got online and I studied everything there was to know about HTML and CSS at the time and I would read up, study through trial and error. I built my first website.

Speaker 1:

It didn't happen overnight, but eventually it happened and so once I got that kind of all laid out, I said well, there's opportunity here. I think there's people in our community or small town, because I was in Burlington Iowa so Southeast Iowa kind of a river city right next to the Mississippi In Burlington Iowa was a small town and I said I believe there's opportunity here. There's not very many people with websites. The web was first starting to take off but there wasn't many people that had websites and businesses and so I said, well, I'm going to create a business name, I'm going to go out, I'm going to ask these people if they want me to build them a website. So I got on Microsoft Paint, that's what it was. It was Microsoft Paint and I actually made a logo. Man, it's hideous now that I look back on it, but at the time I was so proud of it. I was proud of it because I stuck it on a business card, I stuck it on a little flyer with some pricing and I walked into a business and so my very first business.

Speaker 1:

I can remember I rode my bike down there with my backpack and it was downtown Des Moines, and I walked into the business and I looked around kind of seen what they had to offer, and then I said, hey, do you have a website? The first thing I said was, hey, do you have a website? And they said no, we don't have a website. And I said, do you want to get a website? And the answer was yes. And that's kind of how I approached it. And so once they say yes, they said, well, I'm just getting into web development, I'd love to be able to build you a website. Here's kind of my price structure, of what I have to offer and I can have you a website up and running an X amount of time.

Speaker 1:

Fully expecting, like I'm in high school, I'm fully expecting that they're going to say no, have no trust in me. But they said yes. They said yeah, absolutely, we love that. We've been looking for someone for a while. We just don't know who to go with. And you sound very professional. That was a confident boost. If you think back, think back a time that you had a confident boost. That was mine, right there. It was a confident boost that, hey, I've seen professionals. So even when it's an ugly logo, I've seen professionals.

Speaker 1:

So I actually took on that client and I made a website for him. I went above and beyond because I wanted to make sure that I wowed them. And once I did that and I had a kind of a portfolio, I started building that portfolio out and people loved it and a lot of my business clients loved it because there was someone out there that could do what they could do. Now it was way undercharging. I completely undervalued myself and my work. I mean I was charging $500 for these websites. That would sometimes take me 40 hours just to complete, but at the time in high school it was good money and it was money that made me feel accomplished, that I knew what I was doing and it helped me kind of pave the way to my next entrepreneurship journey.

Speaker 1:

But I would say what I learned the most from that is, for one you need to make sure that you're asking for the sales, you're asking the client. Hey, can I do this for you? It doesn't hurt. I got told no tons of times. I can remember I got told no or got shunned off and, pretty sure, laughed at by a few people. But I didn't care. I really didn't care because I knew I had something valuable to offer. And if they didn't want it, I'll move on to someone that could see the value and that was important. So that was kind of my first journey.

Speaker 1:

And then I moved up to Des Moines, iowa, and I worked for Radio Shack inside of Target Mobile and that's where I learned a lot of my sales tactics and sales techniques is I wasn't the greatest salesperson, I wasn't excellent at closing deals and I was almost shy sometimes to talk to people, and so I was able to overcome a lot of that through coaching there. And that's really what I remember is I first time I was there and I had to sell something, I was a little nervous. I was like what if they say no? And then I remember back I was like, well, people said no from my websites. I didn't care. Why is this any difference? And that kind of gave me that push. And there was a district manager named Tyler Bloomer at the time and he actually taught me a lot. There is a lot about sales and kind of how to overcome objections and what objections are, and so he helped me a lot with that.

Speaker 1:

And every single person that I have had in every single business or every single job I've always looked at who is my mentor and everything they've said. I've always taken a heart and every single person tell me, hey, you need to put your ego aside. I've had someone tell me, hey, you need to be humble. And every single time I've been told something, I evaluate it. I look at myself and say, hey, is there something I could be doing differently? How can I improve as a person? How can I improve as a leader? I think that's one of the biggest things that I take from every single business and every single journey.

Speaker 1:

So, being in high school doing web development, my secondary job was being a lifeguard and teaching swimming lessons, which I absolutely love because I love helping people. So, being able to see the progress from the kids and coming into those swimming lessons and then seeing them struggle and then not, and then at the very end of swimming lessons, being able to swim the entire length of the pool, that felt accomplished. That felt accomplishing to me. Like I can't tell you how accomplished I felt when I could see these kids come in and they were struggling, but then at the end of the day or end of the swimming lessons, they were being able to swim all the way to the end of the pool. It was amazing and I realized that I loved helping people. That's just what I love to do.

Speaker 1:

So, moving in to Des Moines, iowa, I actually opened up my own business called Mobile Spot, and I grew that pretty quickly, with a lot of mistakes, and we talked a lot about my mistakes and we'll talk more about my mistakes on another episode. But I made a lot of mistakes and I got to a point in my business where it was running without me. I didn't have to be there all the time and things were going smooth and I wanted to be able to show other business owners that it is possible to trust your team, it's possible to let your staff handle scenarios that might come up and you can have them do all of this without you having to be there. And it actually helps grow you as a leader and helps grow your company, because your team is going to feel more empowered, they're going to feel more like they can handle it and that they don't need someone to constantly watch over them. It was never that micromanager. I wasn't going to micromanage, so I was never that person. But when I got to that point again, I made a lot of mistakes and I learned from every single one of my mistakes, and I continued to make mistakes today. I think it's part of business. It is part of business. It's part of life. You're going to make mistakes, but the most important thing about those mistakes is learning from them and overcoming them.

Speaker 1:

And so running MobileSpot has taught me a whole lot about why I wanted to do business coaching and consulting, and it was because I love helping people. My MobileSpot store we repair devices and I love repairing devices and helping people. They bring in something broken, I can show them, I fix it and they're like wow, this is amazing, thank you so much for helping me out. And I knew I loved helping people. I got to a point where I could walk into another business, look around and see things that needed to be improved, and I wanted to be able to help that business and help that owner improve those little things that would make a big difference, whether it be in the culture of the business or whether it be directly related to sales. I wanted them to be able to see that I could help them out. That's really what drove me to wanting to be a business consultant and a business coach. And then, as far as the coaching side, I wouldn't be where I am today without a business coach and I didn't know how important it was to have one until I hired one.

Speaker 1:

But it really comes down to they're there for you, for your mindset. They're there for you when you feel like you can't make it. They're there to tell you that you can. They're always going to be in your corner, rooting for you and wanting you to succeed. And that is just so powerful Having someone there that you know will never let you down, that will always be encouraging you and that will always be rooting for your success. That was so important to me. So that's a little journey into my background, kind of why I became a business coach and business consultant, and we'll talk a lot about those mistakes on some upcoming episodes of the by Time Podcast and why mistakes aren't necessarily a bad thing. Thank you so much for listening today. I really do appreciate you all. Please make sure to follow me at JacobKMead on all the socials and until next time. Thanks for listening to today's episode. My name is JacobKMead and until next time.