With the new year nearly upon us, it’s a great time for reflection. What’s truly important? Are we working on these most important things? Do we give ourselves the time to rejuvenate and revitalize? Growing a business isn’t about working harder, or longer. It’s about working smarter — in a more measured and deliberate way. This is the freedom lifestyle, and it applies whether you’re the employer or the employee.
My guest for this episode is Shanda Sumpter. Shanda is the founder of HeartCore Business– a training company on the brink of hitting eight figures designed to give entrepreneurs the powerful systems they can use to share their gift and use those gifts to create profitable, sustainable businesses.
Shanda is a dynamic speaker, trainer, and business coach, as well as a bestselling author and owner of a multi-million-dollar business and a wife and mom with plenty of time for family, self-development, hobbies, and rest.
She’s experienced her own journey from struggle to triumph: there was a time when she had only $500 to her name and was facing the prospect of moving back home to her parents’ house in Canada.
She knew then that it was time to make a change. So she hired a mentor.. and that became the catalyst for a domino effect of miracles.
This interview originally aired on my other podcast Get Yourself Optimized, episode #59. If you aren’t listening to Get Yourself Optimized, you’re really missing out. Please subscribe, and tell your friends to subscribe too!
And now, on with the show!
In this Episode
- [00:19] – Stephan introduces his next guest, Shanda Sumpter, founder of HeartCore Business, dynamic speaker, trainer, and business coach, as well as a bestselling author and owner of a multi-million-dollar business.
- [01:45] – Shanda speaks her opinion about the freedom lifestyle: spending time intimately with people, making a massive difference in the world, and making more than enough money than you could spend.
- [03:46] – Shanda shares being a recovering workaholic and her steps made during the transition.
- [07:15] – Stephan asks Shanda what prompted her to shift from a three-day-week structure to a one-week-off working model.
- [13:33] – Stephan wants to know if flex weeks and months apply to coaches or consultants.
- [17:29] – Shanda explains her second-tier program called Marketing Mastery and shares the excellent results of her clients.
- [19:56] – Stephan and Shanda discuss things to avoid getting burned out since business, when done correctly, should feel great.
- [27:02] – Stephan requests Shanda to share the process and how everything went up when she switched to her flex time model and started just being much more focused and not being available all the time.
- [30:31] – Stephan agrees that tithing is important. The 10% is just the tithing piece, and then on top of that, you will get more in return from the universe in the bible.
- [33:39] – Shanda explains the internet marketing terminology, swipe file, and evergreen .webinar.
- [37:16] – Stephan wants Shanda to elaborate and give examples of how she can turn anything into a coaching or consulting company.
- [42:44] – Shanda talks about having various coaches simultaneously.
- [44:30] – Stephan is curious about the size of Shanda’s enterprise and asks if it’s mostly systemized or composed of a small lean team or dozens of staff?
- [46:00] – Shanda shares the systems on how she makes her business profitable and scalable.
- [49:16] – Shanda gives her last wealth-building tip which is that everybody should get an insurance policy for a rainy day.
Welcome Shanda, it’s great to have you.
Nice to be here, thanks for inviting me.
Yes, let’s start with what is a freedom lifestyle in your opinion?
That’s a great question. The funny thing is I don’t think I’ve ever been asked that. I think everybody’s got a different variation of freedom, but to me, it’s being able to spend your time doing what you want when you want it and having enough money to be able to do that at will. For instance, I have always wanted to be a mom, always wanted to be a wife, and I also have a very strong drive in the business world; it would be very easy for someone like me to be a workaholic. In fact, I am a recovering workaholic. I ran my life so that I’m working all the time, just really in the pursuit of making more money. The truth is that’s not freedom at all, and I think that a lot of business owners miss that when they’re in the process of building their businesses. For me, a freedom lifestyle means that I’ve got enough time to be able to spend time with baby Zack, to spend time with my partner Ash, to be able to spend time with my family, have conversations with my girlfriends, do spa days, but I’m also very active in working.
Three weeks every month, I work harder than most people will ever work; I work very hard. However, there’s still a hard stop at four when I’m at swimming lessons with my son. Out of all the swim lessons, I’ve missed three of them where the nanny’s done it; I’ve done the rest of them. The last week of every month, I take off. I don’t say this to brag or boast at all; I just say this because I’m always amazed at the entrepreneurs that I meet that are out in the world, they’re like, “I’ve got freedom, I’ve got freedom. I’m working for freedom or selling this concept,” but they’re not spending time with the people that they love. Freedom to me is truly spending time intimately with people, making a huge difference in the world, and making more than enough money than you could spend.
You said you are a recovering workaholic. What did it take for you to make that transition because I also was a workaholic? It’s a socially acceptable one, but you have to make a significant change to your habits, to your lifestyle, to kind of the ruts in your brain that you’re used to triggering, and it’s uncomfortable. What’s the secret there?
Having a great coach, I think, is a great aspect. I interviewed Kim Kiyosaki, Robert Kiyosaki’s wife of the Rich Dad Poor Dad books. I interviewed Kim, and one of the things I said to her when I was in workaholic mode was, “Do you have a coach?” And she’d laugh. She’s like, “I have five coaches.” They had a wealth coach, real estate coach, a fitness coach, a spiritual coach. They had five coaches. She said, “You know, that’s just what a lot of very powerful people do. They realize humbly they can’t get outside their own thought process. When you’re a workaholic, you truly believe you cannot take time off. You truly believe that you have to get this done.” I had a great coach for me at that time, and I hired her because she made a ton of money and she had an incredible lifestyle, and she homeschooled her children, she cooked dinner for her family, and at that time for me, it was a lot of money, she was making about $300,000 a month. She was way ahead of me at that time.
Anybody on my staff can take an unlimited vacation throughout the year, it’s 100% paid, and they just have to do a great job inside the company.
I was like, “I want that. I want to make $300,000, and I want to be able to live the lifestyle that she’s living.” She put me on a stretch where I had to work three days a week, and I could only work three days a week. If you asked me what my secret was, it was sticking to the plan that I committed to even though every essence of my being wanted to work much more than I committed, but I’m very good at following a plan. A great entrepreneur has got to be good at following a plan because if you can’t follow a plan and course adjust and keep committing to that plan all the way through, you’ll find that you’ll be a great starter and a shitty finisher. I followed the plan; I worked three days a week, I got super depressed. What I realized is that my work is what defines me. When I was only working three days a week, I had all this space. What’s crazy is that I got so much more done because have you ever noticed before you go on vacation you’re on hyper-productivity mode.
You get everything done. Because I was on vacation mode every week and working only three-day workweeks, I had that energy every week. I had to get everything done. My efficiency went through the roof, but my depression went super high because I didn’t know what to do with myself. I realized I had no life. That was a rude awakening for me. I thought I had this great life, great friends, super social, busy busy busy. I thought I just had this full life, and I didn’t; I had a poor excuse for a life, and all I did was work; all I talked about was work; I didn’t know how to be anything but work. Even when I would go out and have fun, I still talked about work, and I thought that’s what all my friends wanted to do too but what I didn’t realize is many of my friends had lives outside the time they spent with me. It was trippy.
You shifted from this three-day-a-week structure to a one-week off-model at the end of the month. What prompted that?
When I got depressed on the three-day week, I decided that I would start doing triathlons, and I got into endurance sports. I got into endurance sports because I thought I always held about 12 or 15 pounds overweight that I didn’t want on my body. I’ve been doing that all through high school, all through my 20s, and I just decided that if I was going to have this extra time, then I wasn’t going to use the excuse that I was too busy to train consistently, and so I got another coach. I started training for endurance sports, and I learned this crazy thing: the mind on endurance sports is like a highly efficient machine. Not only did it get happier because my endorphins went up, but I started to become a really strong finisher where I used to only be a great starter, not a strong finisher. Hence, I began to become a really strong finisher. That’s a whole another story. But through that, I started learning that athletes recover before races. They recover after races, but the strategy is to go into a fully refreshed race.
I realized, “Wow, there’s such a correlation between endurance and being an entrepreneur, and that is that we entrepreneurs are doing this all wrong. We’re working, working, working until we either have adrenal fatigue, many women have, or men you end up losing your wives, or your family, or you cheat or something happens because you’re so far away from the real-life that you wanted to live and. What happens is life makes you have a recovery session. You’ve got to lick your wounds and recover, whether it’s in a detrimental fashion or it’s in a healthy manner.
Endurance athletes do it beforehand. I started keying into this and realized that many endurance athletes are high-performing entrepreneurs. I started dissecting this way of growing a robust business, and that is you need to schedule recovery time on a regular basis where there’s no email, you’re not having work meetings. It truly is off, like it’s completely off. I started doing that and what happened was my company started growing fast, and I started having better relationships. Obviously, a by-product of that is I got in ridiculous shape.
That’s awesome. When you say you’re off, you’re not checking email for an entire week; no assistant is going to bother you and say, “Hey, this is urgent. I don’t know what to do about this.”
No. It’s called flex week in my company. Flex week is flex time. It’s the last week of every month, and it’s very rare that I’ll take a day out of there. Every now and then, I’ll take a Monday and say I’m going to work this Monday; I’ll let my company know I’m going to be available on Monday. Most of the time throughout the year, it is truly 100%. If you interviewed my staff, they would say, “When Shanda’s on flex, we don’t call her; we don’t text her.” They may email me, but I’m not going to answer. They know that I’m not going to answer. There’s usually an autoresponder on my email that says I’m on flex week. I’ll also take off the month of December.
In December, it says, on my email, “I’m off for the month of December. I’ll be back in the office on January 2nd or this year. I think it works out to be January 3rd next year where the Monday is.” I say that all my emails will be deleted before I return to the office because most of them will be irrelevant by the time I get here. As you know, when you take a vacation, you don’t want to come back to an email list that takes you a month to get through. If this is an emergency, please email my assistant; if this is an accounting issue please email our accountant, otherwise have a great December, a great holiday season and email me back if this is important on January 3rd.”
Wow, that is amazing.Freedom is truly spending time intimately with people but also making a huge difference in the world and making more than enough money than you could spend. Click To Tweet
My assistant goes in, so I have a very, very, very, private email for the month of December when I’m gone. There are only two people who have access to that, my assistant and my book editor. If there is a dire emergency, like something really bad has happened in the office, my assistant can call me or forward something to that email. It’s very rare I ever get anything in that email. It’s just very rare because my assistant would call me if there were something that urgent. My entire staff knows that nobody is allowed to call me, not my general manager. They all have to go through my gatekeeper, my assistant, and they have the same respect from us. When they’re in Italy on vacation, we also have unlimited vacation inside my company; it’s paid.
Anybody on my staff can take an unlimited vacation throughout the year, it’s 100% paid, and they just have to do a great job inside the company. We run our company like that because, again, I want my staff to be fully recovered when we’re pushing, when we’ve got something big on the plate, and we’re working on stuff which is pretty much all year long. They’ve got to make sure that they’re recovering and not running on low steam, so I consider it their responsibility to make sure they’re recovered and not saying, “Oh my god, I need a vacation.” That doesn’t fly in my company.
Right. When you say, you give unlimited amounts of vacation as long as they’re performing. What’s kind of the maximum time that you’ve given so far? Two months? Three months?
I don’t track it.
Oh, you don’t.
I don’t track it at all. My joint venture manager, right before our product launch, a lot of people would think I was crazy. Two weeks before our product launch, she was in Italy for 10 days. But while she left, she partnered with somebody else on the team to make sure that the communication was still happening with the partners that were mailing and supporting the launch. We truly work as a team inside this company.
Wow. Let’s say that you’re a consultant or a coach and you apply this model to your business. You take the entire month of December off. I guess you added all up, and you take four months out of twelve, right?
I did last year. Last year I took out four months out of twelve. Now, let me say something about flex time because we’ve had some of our clients write about this in books, and it’s not about taking my plan. My plan works great for me because I work well; I’m thinking about changing my plan right now because now I have a toddler. I just want to spend more time with him, but I also have this crazy drive. I’m finding now that because I’ve got swimming lessons and music lessons, and I want to be a great mom, that definition of freedom, but I also don’t want my company to slow down on growth. What I’m finding is three weeks now; I’m just kind of got some good momentum.
Taking off the week, almost I don’t need to take the week off now. I don’t know how to explain it. It’s just the algorithms inside my body have changed. My life has changed now that I have a toddler. We’re currently looking at doing two weeks a quarter, which would cut my flex time down a week. It wasn’t designed like this because I need more time inside of my company; it’s more about the flex time working to have me feel recovered. Now, we’re looking at every quarter moving into next year taking off two weeks, so I’m out of the office two weeks of every quarter and then going to like another country or something like that. I’m gone for two weeks exploring the world with friends. We’re now calling groups of our friends. I’ve enrolled Ash, my partner, in this. We’re like setting up time next year with our friends so that we have different sets of friends that go with us to maybe China or whatever and we’d go for two weeks out of every quarter, and then I’ll work a four-week work month, but then I’ll still be done at four because family time is after that. Does that make sense?
Yeah, it makes sense. I imagine the listeners are going to feel like, “Wow. That sounds great, but I could never pull that off because I am a coach or consultant.
I am a coach. I am a business coach. I still see one on one clients. To build a great business, you have to be good at leadership, which means that if you’re good at leadership, you’re great at sales. Another word for sales is enrollment, and enrollment goes back to being a great leader. My clients are enrolled in this vision. It’s not about Shanda disconnecting and not being around, it’s about everybody leading a great life, and it’s about me being able to be highly functioning as their coach and their consultant to support them. I lead groups of 400 clients and group programs. I lead personal clients. I have Voxer on my phone, so I’ve got clients that are walkie-talkie-ing me, and they all know that at four I’m done, and they all know right now that the last week of the month is flex week.
To build a great business, you have to be good at leadership.
Most of them have adopted it because I’m a strong leader. My company didn’t grow because I worked harder; my company grew because I broke the scarcity in my mindset by changing my schedule like this. Remember, my company grew working three days a week. I doubled in size, working three days a week. You got to remember abundance and great business strategy. You can access a campaign or a strategy or an idea that will make you millions or thousands or whatever it is that you want; it doesn’t come from a limiting thought process. If you truly think that you can’t do that, that’s an indication for you to try it.
Would you say that all of your clients, most of your clients, or just some of your clients are adopting the flex week, kind of last week off of the month sort of schedule?
Well, my second-tier clients, I have a second-tier program that people can stay in forever; it’s called Marketing Mastery. I would say about 85% of those people do some sort of flex and a lot of them copy my flex just because they haven’t created their own.
Are they getting amazing results?
Yeah. Good. They definitely are. Emily travels around the world, to Bali, to Thailand, all over the place. She flies first class everywhere; from the most part, I understand she’s been flying first class for the last couple of years now. When I met her, she was only making just six figures. Now, I think she just put 53 people in a coaching program. Let’s just say she’s charging $600 a month, which she might do for a group program. So she’s making $32,000 a month with that program. She’s making $381,000 a year, and she’s traveling around the world. Now, that’s not her only program. I have another girlfriend and friend. Half of my good close friends have created coaching and consulting companies because you can turn anything into a coaching and consulting company. I have another great friend of mine, Carrie, we just showed her how to build an email list, and she just finished building the 14,000 people on her email list, she made $650,000 this year, and she had a baby in the process and is a single mom.
We’ve taught her now, because she makes great money, to build. She now has built a salesperson to sell for her, and she has a got an admin person that we’re moving on to full-time to make her life easier. She also has flex week. We have clients in the seven figures; they have flex time. We have clients who, God bless their hearts, have gotten cancer in the middle of the year and have got to go on to chemo for extended periods of time; now, their flex time is even grown because they just can’t work the way that they were working before and so we adopt flex time to their chemo and things like that so that they have extended periods of time and their companies are growing. We took one girl over the seven-figure mark when she was dealing with her cancer and her life.
Business is a part of us, and when done right, it should feel great.
I took a six-month sabbatical because I was just burned out; this was years ago. I was running my agency, and I was living in New Zealand at that time. You can do this from anywhere, and you can set your own schedule, and as long as you have systems and great people in place, you can pull this off. I took almost six months off, and it was fabulous. I didn’t have to go to the office, it was amazing.
It’s great, but I guess the message I’m trying to say is that I just want people to stop getting burnt out because I don’t think it’s your life and then business. I believe business is a part of us, and when done right, it should feel great. It doesn’t feel great if you are running yourself into the ground; it just doesn’t feel great. I limit my speaking so that I’m not on the road 12 months out of the year. I’m only on the road closest to my zone event, which is coming up here in Los Angeles. Now, I’m speaking a lot because we’re going into the Zone Event, and I want to bring awareness so that I can get as many people to come to the event as possible to help as many people as I can build businesses with these freedom models. I share this with you because if I didn’t know how to put marketing in the right order and I didn’t know how to prioritize marketing in the right order, this is a big piece for entrepreneurs living like this, then this would feel unattainable, but this is a great example. I do a lot of speaking; I make myself very available for TV and things like that.
Anything that I can do moving into the zone event, that’s because that’s the project at hand, and it requires a lot. I don’t want to speak on stages 12 months out of the year way far before my event because it’s not about me going and selling more products. I can do that through webinars. Last Friday, we put a webinar out. I’m very transparent; we made $15,000 off a webinar that we put out. That’s just a nice day; it was a nice hour. That will go on to probably at least double over the next couple of days with the follow-up system. I can make that type of money going and speaking on stages too. You can do $60,000, $80,000, $100,000 speaking off stages, but if it requires me to go somewhere, get on a plane and it’s not in the prioritized time zone of the zone event, which is my big event, if it’s not in proximity to that event, I don’t need to chase that money. I’ll do everything through online stuff and through now Facebook Live or live streams, or webinars where I can be at home, and when I’m done, I feel like I’ve contributed enough. I’ve given my time, I’ve supported, and now I’m going to be with my family. Does that make any sense?
Yeah, it does.This world that we know of is changing all the time. You’re going to have some good years and some bad years. I recommend that you find some sort of insurance plan. Click To Tweet
We don’t have to burn ourselves out. I think it’s really easy, especially the more successful you get; it’s a double-edged sword. At the very beginning, you think you need to take everything. Real estate agents have this problem. They need to work 24/7, seven days a week. That’s a mindset. The girl who showed me her first year in business made a million dollars selling real estate; she didn’t work on weekends. Do you not think everybody wanted her on the weekends, yes but she didn’t work on weekends. Abundance comes from actually creating a plan and a schedule around you that works to serve you. If you’re throwing yourself into the ground, you have to stop and just say, “Why do I think that’s okay?”
Yeah, it’s as much about the not-to-do list as with the to-do list.
It is, but people say that all the time, but most people don’t live it. It’s like another great opportunity will come up in front of you, and you’re like, “Okay, I got it. Let’s go.” It’s like, “No, just stop doing that to yourself, you’ll make more money if you do less, and you do more in specific prioritization. I call them tempos, where you work hard for 90-day segments. You should do that twice a year, and your company will just go ‘prrt’.
Yeah. I remember Carl White describing how he builds these bridges fully before he moves on to the next bridge where most people are working on a whole bunch of things at the same time like, “Oh, I want to start a podcast, and I want to set up these email sequences, and I want to do this affiliate program.”
You get it; you totally get it. You’re articulating it perfectly. That’s exactly what I’m saying. What is the rush?
If you only have 90% of the bridge built, that’s still is an unfunctional bridge. No cars can go across it. Just finish the darn bridge, then start the next one.
I love it. That’s very well articulated. That’s exactly what I’m saying.
Your Zone Event, when is that, and where exactly? In Los Angeles?
I’m so excited. It’s just one of my favorite projects of the year. It’s in Los Angeles. It’s at the Western Hotel in Los Angeles, right by the airport. It’s November 9th through 11th. If people want to learn about it, they can go to thezoneevent.com. It’s a very unique event. I know that many people think that about their events, but here’s why I think it’s unique. We work on your business at the event. I run it like it’s a $2,000 workshop. Of course, I always make an offer at every single event. I’m going to make an offer at the zone event to show people how to build their email list and show them how to sell to those email lists and scale their company, but whether or not somebody purchases our offer at the event or not, they will walk out for instance like the webinar that I just did last week. We were taking that webinar, and we’re taking all the swipe files, and people will work on their own messaging and following the formula that we use so that they can run evergreen webinars that convert.
People like our coaches will be there working with you; I’ll be there working with you. That’s just one piece of what we’re doing, but we take apart the best marketing that’s worked inside my company over the last 12 months. We put blank slides for you to start building out your next 12 months working off exactly what worked in my company over the last 12 months, and it’s going to be like two, three things. It’s not going to be 500 things that have you confused. You’ll walk out with a very simple 12-month plan with actual marketing materials that we have approved and looked at and have sampled off of our tests and our purse, our swipe files, our follow-up series, all of that type of stuff. How do you convert true buyers and customers to make a bigger difference in the world. It’s a very cool event.
Abundance comes from creating a plan and a schedule that works to serve you.
Yeah, that’s great. You’re very transparent. This is just a great example of that, sharing all your swipe files and marketing collateral that got those webinars filled and how it worked and lessons learned and so forth. In fact, even before we recorded this, we were chatting, and you were sharing your revenues and profit margins and stuff and how everything went up when you switched to your flex time model and started just being much more focused and not being available all the time. Do you want to share any of that with the listeners?
Sure, yeah. I’m happy to share. When I was a workaholic, I’ll never forget my first year; I made a $2,000 profit. That’s freaky. I worked out of a closet, and I was working seven days a week, and I couldn’t believe at the end that I made $2,000. I don’t even know how I lived to be quite honest. I had a massive tax bill at my time because I had no money, and I was an entrepreneur. Every dollar that came in, I spent it, but with my expenses, my profit margins, I meant $2,000 at the end of the year and had a tax bill, and I couldn’t understand how the business worked that way. I started moving down to this flex time, having recovery time and strategically building my company from a sound balanced mind. Now I’ve grown a company that is yielding $5,000,000 a year, our profit margins are at 35% to 37%, and what’s cool is that that’s after I’m paid, that’s after everybody’s paid. I share that because a good company should be–I think Walmart’s at 35% profit margin. I don’t mind sharing that type of stuff because I think people often don’t look at their PNLs. They’re only looking at the money coming in the door, and I just really want people to look at their company and build it properly. Do you know what I mean?
Build it, understand your profit margin, and pay yourself good money. You don’t pay yourself nothing and then never buy a house. None of that makes sense. You’re going to have to pay your taxes. I live in California, so taxes are ridiculous, and you’re always finding ways to try, and wealth build differently, but at the end of the day, it’s hanging out with smart people, asking smart people how they’re doing it and playing the game the way it’s meant to be played, and look at your profit margins and grow accordingly. I don’t pay myself $100,000 a year to not pay taxes. I pay myself properly. Last year, I paid myself half a million dollars a year. The year before that, I paid myself $300,000 a year. I just shared this with you because, first of all, I don’t know how much money you need because I still have a hard time figuring out how to spend it all. I just do. We’re all on this hype to make millions and millions and millions and millions. I don’t know why. I give 10% away to God; I tithe 10% to anything that spiritually feeds me. I just did it to Joel Osteen just recently. I’m tithed to him. I just really think it’s important to be a good person, think generously, give back, you get what it is that your seed, but most importantly it’s not just important to tithe, but it’s important also to take care of yourself because if you don’t have the self-love to take care of yourself, then you’re just playing a dangerous game with your health and with your ego chasing something called money that’s never going to make you happy. Be happy and make a ton of money in the process.
Build it, understand your profit margin, and pay yourself good money.
Yeah. I wholeheartedly agree. The tithing, too, is important. You don’t want to count stuff that you’re doing that ends up just benefiting the person directly, and nobody else like it doesn’t go on to serve others and feed others. If you give a homeless person $20, that’s not part of your tithing. That’s just the extra because that person will use it for themselves alone and not share the wealth and share that energy. The 10% is just the tithing piece, and then on top of that–that’s interesting that pretty much just guaranteed that you will get more in return from the universe in the bible. That’s one of the things. You’re just going to get more out of it.
I’m reading the bible for the first time, cover to cover right now. I don’t know if you know Isabela, she owns a company called Beyond Diet. I think they’re just over like in their $20,000,000 mark company, and she’s like this humble, sweet, amazing girl, and she homeschools her kids. The most interesting piece about her is her number one most important job is to be a good Christian wife to her husband. She always inspires me because when I call her, we talk scripture, we talk this, and she’s the one who told me, I was like, “I want to read the bible cover to cover, but I find it hard to read. I fall asleep, or I don’t understand the words, or it’s too complex for me.” It’s funny, right, like you just have all these limiting beliefs, and she’s like, “Read this one. It’s like the new beginner’s guide to the bible.” I’ve been reading it, and it’s like the best personal development book I have ever read. I mean, it is so good. I’m sitting there going, “Why do we run around and say I’m spiritual, not religious?” That’s just another religion.
It’s like you’re being what you don’t want to be. I just stopped all of that stuff and said, “I’ve read a course on miracles, I’ve worked with shamans, I’ve gotten to psychics.” I’ve just been on the seeking quest my entire life, and I baptized myself, but I never really stayed in scripture. It’s fascinating. Now my nanny’s reading the bible. It’s just interesting when you take on the plan and follow the plan. I don’t want to digress too much, but it’s like all these stuff that’s said about how limiting the bible is or judgmental, it’s not. It’s who’s telling you these. The bible says things like, don’t cheat on your partner because I’ll forgive you, but your human friends will probably brand you and never forget that you’ve broken your integrity and your word and your reputation will be tarnished. The bible just says all these great things to protect you; it’s very fascinating.
I’ve been taking Kabbalah classes.
I did that too.
I see that similar thing where it’s the best self-help sort of movement where you get this very practical knowledge, but it also feeds you. Pretty exciting.
That’s awesome. That’s great that you’re doing that. I did Kabbalah too. It’s fantastic.Hang out with smart people, ask them how they’re doing it, and play the game the way it’s meant to be played. Click To Tweet
Let’s go back to the lifestyle design sort of stuff and wealth building. Just quickly, let’s define for folks who don’t understand all the internet marketing terminology, swipe file, and evergreen webinar.
Okay, so swipe file is imagine taking an email that I’ve sent out to my email list, or we’ve posted a message on Facebook, have you ever posted something on Facebook it’s got no engagement, no likes, no shares, just nothing. A swipe file is a way for you to take something that I’ve done, and you just mirror it. I teach business, but you can take my swipe file and put health words on it. You change the words where I say maybe make money; you would say get in shape. It’s a way that the formatting of the way I’m writing my emails or my posts is written to the point that they’re direct and capture people’s attention quickly. Not all emails are post-work, and that’s why at the zone event, when I’m giving this type of stuff at the zone event and sharing what’s worked and you can copy it, it gives you a high advantage and shortens your testing span so that it works quicker. In all and all, it will work quicker. A swipe file is that. It’s emails, marketing that we’ve sent out on the web through an email list that has had a great open rate, really had a great clickthrough which means that people have actually just raised their hand to work with us or personally purchased from us.
The best thing is when you have a swipe file provided by the marketer who sent all these campaigns, and they’re willing, like you are, to give all the data on what worked and what didn’t work; otherwise, you’re flying blind. The idea of a swipe file is that usually, you’re just capturing emails, Facebook Ads, magazine ads, and so forth that you see out in the wild that look compelling that you think work. Still, you don’t know for sure, and you’re just putting it all into a file or a folder in your computer and reviewing that later and see what you’re going to copy or kind of R&D, rip off and duplicate. With what you’re doing, you’re sharing what happened on the back-end.
The most powerful coaching and consulting business on the planet is the one your life has already taught you.
100%. Then evergreen webinar is this thing that everybody wants which is a webinar that is playing, it’s been recorded and is playing while you sleep. It’s playing seven days a week where people can come to that webinar and they can watch a presentation and take advantage of your offer. The cool thing about that is that’s happening while you’re spending time on your flex time. That’s making you money when you’re taking some time off and recovering. What’s important that I teach that I think is really important part is how do you get people to that, that are your ideal client base. When you’re suffering around something and someone makes you an offer that will solve that suffering, you feel like a miracle had just happened and so you want the right people to come watch your emails and that’s what I speak about everywhere is how do you get the right audience to watch your webinars, to open up your emails, to join your email list, how do you get those right people and that’s what I think we do very, very, well. We’ll discuss all of that at the zone event. We’ll give all of that at the zone event and it really is about you making more money and also taking a good amount of time off to enjoy your life in the process.
Yeah, good stuff. Let’s circle back to this idea that you said earlier that you can turn anything into a coaching or consulting company. Can you elaborate a bit on that because I think some real-world examples from clients where they thought, “I’m stuck in this kind of business model because I basically created a job for myself, I don’t know how to get out of it.” Can you give a few examples of those?
I’m looking at a picture right now on my wall with a woman by the name of Christine and she thought she need to go get a certification in holistic weight loss and so she did. She went and spent thousands of dollars to get a certification. This is a lot of people’s story because she thought she needed to get more education to build a business so that she could be financially stable and free, eventually free. She started a business consulting around that. I think that’s something that people, “Okay, great. She got a certification to be a health coach, a weight loss coach.” She’s not doing that. That’s just not what she’s doing now. She started there, she learned how to write emails and how to attract an ideal client base to buy her product on weight loss but she didn’t love it.
What I think is the most powerful coaching and consulting business on the planet is the one your life has already taught you. What I mean by that is Christine; I’ve known her since we were in high school. She’s always been the girl who walks into a room, and everybody turns around and looks at her. She has more friends than anybody I know, she’s got crazy charisma, and what she does is she runs her feminine energy in a way that attracts everybody to her. She, especially men, loved Christine. She’s now married. However, Christine can walk into a room, and every man turns and looks; they just do. For women who are having a hard time meeting the right man, Christine now teaches them how to fearlessly flirt in a very authentic way.
Chasing money is never going to make you happy. So instead, be happy and make a ton of money in the process.
For women like me, I am engaged and have a baby and have found my guy, but I had to hire a coach to figure out how to get over myself. I would go to restaurants and I would just hang out with my girlfriends, order a bottle of wine, and eat and then I would go home. I shut down my energy. I’m sharing this with you because Christine now has a business around something she authentically was already great at since she was in high school and now she gets paid great amounts of money to work with her. Everybody has something that they don’t have to learn the perfect messaging because they are already so good at it. I think many people are trying to create businesses, and they end up hating them even if they make a lot of money because they’re not selling something that is organically authentically them. Does that make sense?
Yeah, it does.
Some people, I’ve seen men who are great at numbers and great at accounting, and they could charge $25,000 to teach CEOs how to read their numbers. They love that stuff; they geek out on it. Great, awesome. That’s fantastic. That’s a great consulting business. I’ve seen stay-at-home moms that just want to make an extra $5,000 a month, and they just cook healthy meals for their family. I’ve seen one woman grow a seven-figure business around just that.
She creates healthy meal plans and shopping lists and she sells subscription-based products where people can purchase that. You get your shopping list at home and you get these healthy menus so that you can cook for your family so that they eat healthfully. Now she’s building a whole consulting business around it, but she’s already grown a seven-figure company around it, but she only started out wanting to do $5,000 a month. My point is I don’t care if you garden well, if you can make musical instruments and you want to share that with people, my parenting coach, we do Montessori training. My parenting coach, I taught her how to build a targeted email list and taught her how to take her talents of what she does, stop working for peanuts, and start charging great money.
She now has parents across America and Canada who pay her on retainer to Skype with them and teach them how to set up their home Montessori and then teach them how to parent Montessori style. Anything can be taken and created a virtual business around. I haven’t found anything yet; I built that $170,000,000 in real estate sales through literally the same process that I teach people how to do this but what I did was I found that I built a company around something I didn’t love. So this is why I say if you keep chasing money, it’s not going to make you happier but building a lot of money and making a lot of money around something that fires you up is awesome, and I’m going to tell you the thing that fires you up is the thing that you’re best at. It really is. You might downgrade it, or you think I don’t want to teach that to people, but the truth is when you open up and stop being selfish. You start helping people with that thing that you’re good at, you’re going to find that very quickly you’ll scale, very quickly you will build, and you will love it because it feels effortless to you; there’s nothing to prepare.
How many coaches have you hired simultaneously? You mentioned Robert Kiyosaki’s daughter?
Wife. Yeah, they don’t have kids. Right now, I always have an endurance coach because whenever I slow down on my endurance training, the capability inside my mind, my capacity shrinks, and so I have an endurance coach. I have a business coach, and then I have a MasterMind for networking that I am a part of. That’s what I have on my roster right now.
I also have a parenting coach, so now I have four. I have a parenting coach.
Awesome. You mentioned one of your clients always flies first class. Is that something that you recommend?
Whatever you’re resisting now, whatever you’re fighting so hard to have an opinion about, that’s actually where you should be heading into.
No. It’s not important to everybody. I don’t have any of those crazy little tactical things. That’s not what it’s about. I like to fly first class, and I want to fly first class, and that’s for comfort. I like it. I gave her instructions to fly first class because she had resistance around it at one point. Now she flies first class all the time because she no longer has resistance around it. Some people don’t care; if you don’t care, then great. Why spend money if you don’t care? It doesn’t matter to me. I think everybody is just unique. Whatever you’re resisting now, whatever you’re fighting so hard to have an opinion about, that’s actually where you should be heading into.
Yeah, that’s kind of the law of attraction. So instead of allowing or resisting, you’re kicking up all this resistance in front of the path, the vortex.
Yeah, and if people followed that, they would scale their excitement in life so much quicker, but they don’t because they like to preach that again but don’t like to do it.
Yeah, that’s true. However, I’m curious about the size of your enterprise, is it mostly systemized? Do you have a small lean team, or do you have dozens of staff?
No. We have a small lean team growing because we are very hands-on with our client base. Generosity is the business model that runs our company. I will not always make everybody happy because not every person thinks that we’re generous, but we are. We run through our client roster list, and we monitor if we’re losing a client, meaning if they’re not showing up in one of our groups, or we haven’t heard them on calls, or they missed an event or something like that in MasterMind. We’re very hands-on, and you need staff for that, but we’re still quite lean. I think we have eight coaches right now and an internal team of five employees, and we’ll probably add another three employees over the next 12 to 16 months to that to our home base. We are building out a call center right now to help our clients sell because we’re very good with enrollment, and many of our clients are very good at enrollment. We have an interesting system inside our company to help them get even better at enrollment by feeding them additional leads to practice. We will personally burn through the cost of those leads to help our clients get better. I think we have a really neat company, but it is still pretty lean.
Very cool. What sort of systems are at the heart of it that makes it so profitable and scalable?
I highly recommend that everybody get an insurance policy for a rainy day.
Our staff is paid on performance, so they have got small bases. Then there’s unlimited ability to grow their incomes, so we have sales team members that are making a couple hundred thousand dollars a year and coaches that are also making a couple hundred thousand dollars a year, but they didn’t start there; they may have started at $2500 a month. We have a mantra inside this company, I personally; from experience, because I’m so generous, I want to pay more money and give people what they want right off the bat. Still, I’ve learned quickly that I’ve ruined a lot; of great people, that way and people just don’t appreciate themselves or the job or the opportunity unless they’ve worked for it.
Yeah, that’s a really important point, and I learned this actually from Kabbalah this idea of Bread of Shame that if you make it too easy for them, you can kind of hand it to them on a platter, they don’t feel like they’ve earned it and then all these side effects come. Lottery winners getting all these money end up blowing it.
It happens all the time. I lived through that experience too many times to do it again. If someone’s enrolled in our vision, they will jump on board, and there’s every reason for them not to jump on board because they’re not getting paid a ridiculous amount of money. However, through creating value inside the company and helping the company grow income, they start to get a percentage of that. Usually, by year three, between two and three, they start to see the efforts of their work just like when entrepreneurs start to yield, and then by year three or four, they should be in a good position inside the company.
Do you do a lot of launches? Or is it just kind of throughout the year it’s just going?
We’re not a product launch company. I have no problems with it at all. We’re just not built that way; we’re not built on info products. We do have a couple of info products, but with our info products, you also get accountability coaching for five months, depending on the campaign we’re running. Again, we’re so hands-on. I can’t tell you how many people said to me, “Oh Shanda, only a small percentage of your people will ever get results and ever do anything with what you teach, and so you just have to live by that.” I have never felt like that sat well with me, and so we’re always–just like when I speak off the stage and get off the stage, I ask myself, “Where could I have done better?” Every year, we stand in front of our clients pretty much naked and let them tell us what they would have liked to have seen different in the last year, and we humbly accept the feedback and make tweaks inside of our company to become stronger the next year. We build off of that. We want our clients to stay with us, so there’s a cost to acquiring a client, and our clients typically don’t leave. 62% of them out of our first-year program, 60% or 62% so far as we’re yielding right now stay with us for a second, third, and fourth year. Wealth is built by retaining clients. It’s not built on just getting them.My company didn’t grow because I worked harder; my company grew because I broke the scarcity in my mindset by changing my schedule. Click To Tweet
Pretty good. Do you have any last kind of tip or strategy that you’d like to share with our listeners regarding wealth-building that we haven’t already discussed?
Yeah. I highly recommend that everybody get an insurance policy for a rainy day. Years ago, I started taking a percentage of everything I made and putting it into a slush account which made me cashflow wealthy to invest in things to grow my company. Still, it also brought me to the awareness that if something happens, God bless if you ever get sued like we’ve been sued, I’m sure you’ve probably been sued. There are unfortunate people out there that like to play that game. They’re not just suing; there’s the economy breaking down. Right now, we’re looking at the fact that Uber and many of these car manufacturers–I just signed up for a self-driving car for TESLA. We’re running into an economy that is slowing down on jobs available. This place is changing. This world that we know is changing all the time. You’re going to have some good years and some bad years.
I recommend that you find some sort of insurance plan. I have an insurance fund. I have one that I ensured my mother for high death benefits. When she’s older, I can borrow from it and take care of her in a home if I need to so it doesn’t affect my family. Also, when she passes away, it gives me a great income to take care of my family. It’s almost like I paid for my inheritance. Creating insurance plans, becoming your own bank. There are books written about it. You need to think outside of just the cash flow and getting the cash flow even if you’re on a cash crunch. It is so important to get with some smart people and ask them what they’re doing and find a model or a plan that works for you that you can commit to because life can get tough. It’s not a matter of if it’s going to get tough; it is going to get tough. If you are not set up for it, it’s just like, “Why put yourself through that?” I think that’s important.
People just don’t appreciate themselves or the job or the opportunity unless they’ve worked for it.
Yeah, that’s great. There’s an entire episode of Get Yourself Optimized dedicated to being your own bank and setting up infinite banking. Listeners, definitely check out that episode. That was an interview with Ray Poteet. We’ll put a link in the show notes to that episode and all the stuff that we talked about in this episode. Any particular insurance that you’d like to recommend?
I don’t even know if I’m allowed to do that, but just because I teach wealth–I don’t know what the liabilities are. Now I do infomercials and things like that.
What do you have that’s out of the ordinary?
I think a great one that’s underused is insuring your parents or insuring your partner. The truth is your parents are going to pass away. If they’re still alive, they’re going to pass away. You can insure your parents even at a high elderly age. It has a high death benefit. It’s tax-free money that comes to you. It’s 100% tax-free money that comes to you. I recommend that’s a no-brainer; it’s a very inexpensive way to give yourself a retirement or inheritance that the government doesn’t tax. I also like these strategies where you’re paying into your own life insurance. I just was learning about a leveraged version of that. But, again, you really should talk to someone. I love David DeAngelo. He’s great. He’s worked with Tony Robbins. He’s a fantastic guy, super honest, very much believes in God. He’s doing a lot with Christian radios lately and TV. He’s a great guy, always available to help.
That’s Eben Pagan, David DeAngelo’s pen name, yes.
No, Not Eben Pagan.
Dave DeAngelo is his pen name, so he wrote Double Your Dating. Is that who you’re talking about?
Oh, no, no. David DeAngelo is an actual financial planner who only deals in insurance. I have financial advisors that can do insurance, but they don’t do insurance like David DeAngelo does.
Many endurance athletes are high-performing entrepreneurs
Got it. If you have a contact, email or something, or website for David that we can include in the show notes, that would be great.
Listeners, just for your information, the kinds of insurances that you could consider are not advised because I’m not qualified to give financial advice or legal advice or anything like that; I’m not a lawyer. Still, there’s key man insurance; there are errors and omissions insurance, disability insurance, travel insurance, liability insurance, and medical and life. You will want to look into some insurances like I have disability insurance because you never know what could happen, and that’s expensive; it’s a lot more expensive than life insurance. If something happens to you and you can’t work, you have to look at the fine print of these different policies. Travel insurance can be cheap, but then they don’t payout. If you go on and you look at the reviews, they’re horrible.
The insurance I’m talking about is more playing with life insurance in a way that sets up you and your family to win.
Yeah, and that’s more of the infinite banking being your own bank sort of stuff. Got it.
The whole game is not trying to get away from taxes; it’s how to grow your money and not lose your money and how to grow your money tax-free.
Excellent. Well, thank you so much, Shanda. This has been a fabulous episode, and I appreciate you being so transparent with your numbers, strategies, and everything. It’s going to be a really valuable episode for our listeners. Thank you again.
You’re so welcome.
Alright, listeners. Be sure to check out the Marketing Speak website where the show notes will be, the transcript of the episode, and we’ll have a checklist of all the action items to take from this episode, and you can download that as a PDF. Definitely check that out, and we’ll catch you on the next episode. This is Stephan Spencer signing off.
Facebook – Shanda Sumpter
Instagram – Shanda Sumpter
Twitter – Shanda Sumpter
LinkedIn – Shanda Sumpter
Your Checklist of Actions to Take
Take the time to think about what a freedom lifestyle would look like for you. For example, what would you do if you took one week out of the month off or only worked three days a week?
Look closely at times during the year that you are the most productive (i.e., before or after vacations, doing certain types of projects, etc.). Use that information to establish flex time that leaves you more refreshed.
When you take time off, are you really off? Do you sneak in calls, emails, or research? Commit to being completely off the grid to get the greatest benefit from your time away.
Taking “flex” time is very important for recovery and productivity. Make it a priority to disconnect often from your regular schedule.
Identify tasks you can block together to enable you to be more focused and increase your productivity.
Make a schedule and stick to it. You can always adjust it when you need to, but committing to your schedule will help you accomplish projects more quickly and efficiently.
What should be on your do-not-do list? This list is just as important as your to-do list. Figure out the tasks that can be delegated, and stop doing them!
Understanding your profit margins and your P & L reports is important for you to see how you can grow your business. If you don’t have time or don’t know how to review your financial performance, hire someone to coach you on it.
Check in with yourself to make sure that your business is making you happy. If you find yourself burnt out and addicted to work, you are probably not working in a space that fulfills you.
Visit Shanda Sumpter’s website to know more about her and her programs.
About Shanda Sumpter
From having $500 to her name to running a multimillion-dollar company, entrepreneur lifestyle specialist, Queen Visionary and founder of HeartCore Business, Shanda Sumpter, found the secret to success and now she is sharing it with the world in her bestselling book, “Core Calling: How to Build a Business that Gives You a Freedom Lifestyle in 2 Years or Less!” Shanda is turning old-school business advice on its head and teaching people how to build an audience first. Her goal is to take the “hard” out of business and enable people to live the life they’ve always dreamed of. Through her business coaching, her book, and her tailored series of online marketing courses, Shanda presents a step-by-step system to take participants out of the daily grind and into a life they love. She lives with her partner and her son on the coast of California, where she runs her business from her oceanfront home office. For more information, visit www.HeartCoreBusiness.com.