Don’t let fear prevent you from getting out of the truck
Following the promise of the American Dream, Idan Shpizear traveled from Israel to California with a desire to spread his entrepreneurial wings. As he entered the trades, he soon learned taking flight was not going to be without bumps and bruises. He earned his stripes in carpet cleaning as he and his partner lugged around a portable carpet cleaner in the back of their beat up Volvo.
He endured, built a business, and scaled 911 Restoration in a rapidly growing franchise. His newly released autobiography encourages entrepreneurs that, “With patience, diligence and passion, you’re bound to discover how much you’re capable of.”
In an interview with the Huffington Post, Idan recalls the perseverance of his early years, “It was such a fun time, and it was a constant effort to overcome challenges. We had freedom; we had nothing to lose and everything to gain.” As we discuss the paths taken by entrepreneurs, this optimism in the face of adversity is a consistent thread. In Episode 15 of The DYOJO Podcast, Denis Beaulieu shared a similar perspective of no risk, no reward which his mom also presented to him in the question, “What have you got to lose?”
Going from tradesperson to entrepreneur
Idan shares his experiences as well as his perspectives on building the business you always dreamed about in his book, Get Out of the Truck. In writing the book, his goal is to share the essential lessons that assisted him to get out of the truck both physically and mentally. It is a book for aspiring entrepreneurs, especially tradespeople who dream of hanging their own shingle in the market, by a dreamer who has successfully built one of the fastest growing franchises in the United States.
The book is a quick read. It was designed to either be read from cover-to-cover or as a resource that can be referred to as a business person goes about their process. Idan also speaks as a leader to other people in a position of leadership, distributing the lessons that he has learned as he built and scaled his property restoration business. Whether you are starting out or taking your organization to the next level, Idan shares, “As you work towards growing your company, don’t lose sight of the numbers. But don’t lose sight of these less tangible objectives either.”
Constantly developing your skills as a leader
Leaders who are not engaged in their business will struggle to work beyond symptoms to find solutions to their problems. In a poignant moment in the book, Idan notes, “I cannot tell you how many times a business owner has complained to me that business was slow because of the marketing. But then when I called their store, the receptionist was rude, disinterested or unhelpful.” Such a simple truth that can cripple your ability to grow as an organization, which is something we also addressed in Garbage In, Garbage Out.
You can acquire a copy of Idan’s book, Get Out of the Truck on Amazon as well as read his thoughts on the 911 Restoration Blog. Mr. Shpizear also shares his thoughts on leadership and personal development in his monthly column Fresh Perspective featured in Restoration and Remediation Magazine (R&R).
Additional Resources from The DYOJO:
Ed "The Restoration Lawyer" Cross joins The DYOJO Podcast to discuss protecting your business through improving your contracts, protecting your business and following industry best practices.
Is it better to be skilled or to be lucky in business?
People ask whether it is skill or luck that leads to success. The truth is that it’s a little bit of both. You have to have the skill to put yourself in a position to recognize and seize upon your opportunities. Gerrett Stier brought his podcasting gear to the 3 Kings Environmental Sumner, Washington office to discuss business with Jon Isaacson.
Gerrett is the owner of GMS Distribution which makes power distribution tools for property restoration. His main product is a panel that allows contractors to draw additional power immediately from a dryer or range plug so that they can more equipment in the service of a water damage response.
The lessons you will learn when starting a business.
Gerrett is an electrician by trade and in 2007 he started working with property restoration contractors. Because he is a service minded person, he sought to make a product for his clients that would save them money and time when sourcing the traditional spider box in situations where they needed additional power. The initial units were hand made from electrical parts.
In 2009, as the market crashed and Gerrett’s hours were cut in half, he took his product on the road and went door to door to determine if there was a broader demand for this distribution unit that he had been making for local restoration contractors. When you have a good product, a good attitude and refuse to allow tough times to take you out, you can put yourself in a position to create some luck. As Gerrett says, “Being smart enough to be lucky.”
Collaboration is key when building a business.
As he was building GMS Distribution, he shares some really cool stories of how local vendors collaborated with Gerrett to help him get the process moving forward. Gerrett has a strong commitment to taking care of his customers and was able to attract partners who held similar values. Transitioning from a skilled professional working in a business to an entrepreneur who is building and working on your own business requires intentionality to persevere through the many obstacles.
Gerrett Stier started The GMS Podcast in late 2019 and for Episode 5 “Skill & Luck”, he and Jon discuss how GMS Distribution was formed, what 3 Kings does and what The DYOJO is about.
What is asbestos abatement?
3 Kings Environmental provides services for demolition, abatement, environmental and civil construction. Gerrett asks questions about the asbestos abatement process such as:
Business coaching for entrepreneurs and small business owners.
What is The DYOJO? Gerrett asks when did Jon get started writing, speaking and coaching for property restoration professionals? Jon discusses his start in property restoration, being introduced to a mold remediation team and learning the skills of the business. He shares how he had the good fortune of learning from good mentors early on which set him up for a trajectory of career development within the industry. Jon discusses the motivation and concepts for business coaching and leadership development through The DYOJO.
Leadership development for business owners.
Jon and Gerrett share where they were and what they were doing when the impact of the market crash hit in 2009. Jon had a family owned business that ran dry and Gerrett was working in electrical where his hours were cut in half so he hit the road selling his product. They share their experiences with learning to keep yourself motivated through trials and endure as you pursue your goals.
The discussion touches on topics including entrepreneurship, asbestos, property restoration, building professional relationships, developing intentionally and doing things the right way in business. Jon also announces two books that he is working on, one is a collaborative publication with multiple authors that will be published through the Insurance Nerds network and the second is a solo project based upon his training and development system for service based companies.
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Every month is something, so why wouldn't November be National Entrepreneurship Month? According to the official White House webpage, president Donald J. Trump made this proclamation for November 2017. In the statement released on October 31, 2017 the president highlighted the efforts of women entrepreneurs,
"For too long, women, despite hard work and a drive to succeed, faced significant barriers in achieving their economic vision. Today, we celebrate that women entrepreneurs are growing their businesses all over the country. The number of women‑owned firms is growing much faster than the national average for all firms. Our Nation has more than 11 million women-owned businesses that employ nearly 9 million people and generate more than $1 trillion in revenue." - president Donald J. Trump, October 31, 2017
Apparently Mr. Trump is not the first one to declare November as National Entrepreneurship Month, according to Wikipedia in 2012, President Barack Obama declared November of that year as National Entrepreneurship Month and to celebrate November 6, 2012 as National Entrepreneurs’ Day. Additionally many supporters of National Entrepreneurs' Day are trying to make it an official US holiday that will fall on the third Tuesday of every Number through legislation. President Barack Obama's statement is also found on the official White House webpage,
America is known around the world as a country that empowers the inventor and the innovator. Ours is a Nation where men and women can take a chance on a dream -- where they can take an idea that starts around a kitchen table or in a garage and turn it into a new business or a new industry. During National Entrepreneurship Month, we celebrate the hard work, ingenuity, and courage of our thinkers, doers, and makers. - president Barack Obama, November 1, 2012
According to Wikipedia, "National Entrepreneurs’ Day was started in 2010 by David Hauser and Siamak Taghaddos, co-founders of Grasshopper, the entrepreneur’s phone system, and Amir Tehrani, entrepreneur and co-founder of The Legacy Foundation." This group of entrepreneurs were invited to the White House to discuss Startup America and the Presidential Innovation Fellows with then president Barack Obama. The White House put an official call out on May 23, 2012 for a few good men, seeking to bring top innovators to serve in 6 to 12 month fellowships for focused "tours of duty" in partnering with federal innovators to generate game-changing projects. "Combining the know-how of citizen change agents and government change agents in small, agile teams that move at high speed, these projects aim to deliver significant results within six months."
The team at Grasshopper put a video together titled Entrepreneurs Can Change The World:
Regardless of the official month of entrepreneurship, those who facilitate the definition of entrepreneur as one who "organizes and operates a business or businesses, taking on greater than normal financial risks in order to do so," know that this is a daily grind. Entrepreneurship is a battle of inches, fought minute by minute and day by day. It's nice that there is some national recognition and resources outlined above, the strength of entrepreneurship is being able to learn from each other - to connect, collaborate and conquer our dreams.
For additional thoughts on entrepreneurship, read our IZ Ventures article published with Restoration & Remediation (R&R) Magazine titled, I'd Be an Entrepreneur, But...
You think interviews are a good idea?
We've got interviews...entrepreneurs, innovators, disrupters, creative thinkers, business leaders, authors, professionals, editors, creators, founders, adjusters, CEO's and the like...
Roll call of our interview posse includes this fun group of creative humans:
Thoughts on personal and professional development.
Jon Isaacson, The Intentional Restorer, is a contractor, author, and host of The DYOJO Podcast. The goal of The DYOJO is to help growth-minded restoration professionals shorten their DANG learning curve for personal and professional development. You can watch The DYOJO Podcast on YouTube on Thursdays or listen on your favorite podcast platform.