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Ambitious. Lifestyle. Business. Podcast.

Are you a small business owner who likes to think BIG? Then this podcast is for YOU. It's a place where AMBITIOUS business owners learn and share SIMPLE, PRACTICAL tips and advice to help their businesses GROW with ONE purpose... TO PROVIDE THEM WITH THE LIFESTYLE THEY WANT. Whatever that means for YOU... Maybe you want to earn £100k a year? Maybe you want to spend more time with friends and family, or travel more? You might want to give up the Day Job, or completely change direction in your business. Perhaps you want to retire in X years? Remove yourself from doing the jobs you HATE? Sack your problem clients? This monthly podcast is 100% FREE. There's no ads. No spammy upsells. No fluffy, woo-woo BS. Just simple, practical help to grow YOUR Ambitious Lifestyle Business.
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Now displaying: 2019
Dec 5, 2019

In this episode we are going to be talking with a couple who chose sanity over their salary. Paul and Emily Hughes from Parent Guides to GCSE.  Paul and Emily met in 2003 as trainee teachers assigned to the same school and have been happily married for 11 years. Now that they've both escaped teaching, they run Parents Guide to GCSE, supporting parents whose children are in year 11.

They offer free tips via email, or to get the most from their expertise you can sign up for one of three membership plans.

They made £11,000 pounds in their launch week so they must be doing something right. Emily has a Master's from Cambridge in Maths with Education, while Paul has a Master's in Information Management and Computing from the University of Sheffield and they both taught successfully for 15 years before taking the leap.  Emily also runs a pop choir in her spare time, as she says she needs to be able to boss people around having left teaching.

Making the break…..

Paul and Emily are fairly new to business, it was a relatively slow process for them they say, Emily started the process by going part time, and started various different streams of revenue, in theory at least, in order to try and be able to get out of the teaching job, that was at the time making her thoroughly miserable.

Paul took slightly longer to take the leap, but he has and the last 3 weeks for him in his words “the best 3 weeks ever”.

They have realised that whatever they have been doing is working. The bills are paid, the children are fed, and they are still living their lives except how they want too now. They have the freedom to do what they want, when they want, how they want and if they want!

For links to everything we talk about, including the video recording of the episode and transcription of everything we talked about, head over to the show notes at bigidea.co.uk/podcast.

And to watch the LIVE recording of each episode of the Ambitious. Lifestyle. Business. Podcast, join our Facebook Group for FREE - you can then watch our ugly mugs in glorious technicolour every month, as well as get BONUS in-between-isodes, and direct access to both of us to ask any questions about this, or any other episode.

Nov 7, 2019

#ALB 58 – The PE teacher who climbed a mountain (or six...)

 Who is Ben Knight?....

Ben Knight is the founder of High 5 Sports and Activity Camps. There's a saying: all who wander are not lost. This would probably be a good way to describe Ben's life so far. Wanderlust means a strong desire to travel. And this is certainly something that Ben can relate to. The planning, challenges, new experiences, that feeling of stepping out of the comfort zone is and has always been something which both excites and scares him in equal measure. Be it through travel, extreme sports or more recently, endurance sports challenges.

Ben is one of our One percenters and has several businesses, including sports camps, bubble football and tennis coaching. He's also a qualified Bodyboarding instructor, Ultimate Frisbee leader, Beach Lifeguard and is mountain medicine trained. He has run two half-marathons and a full one too, in aid of charity, an alternative triathlon, doing stand-up paddleboard, bike and run. Ben has won several tennis double tournaments and represented his county, Devon as a Junior and a Veteran. He's been bodyboarding and snowboarding all over the planet for the last 25 years. And most recently climbed the six highest peaks in six different countries, raising money for a local charity.

One Life, Live it…..

Ben has always had a real lust for life. A passion to sort of see and do many things, there's so much he wants to see and visit and places he wants to go.

There are also many things that Ben wants to accomplish. And he sometimes feels there's not enough time to a certain extent. And every year that ticks by and every time he has to waste time on things that he doesn’t want to be doing, he thinks to himself there is so much other stuff that he wants to be doing. So, Ben makes changes in his work to try to help to facilitate that and tick off as many things on his bucket list as possible.

Ultimate Frisbee

Ben has launched Ultimate Frisbee in his holiday camps which is proving to be a big hit. It is a game aimed at older kids as you need to be slightly more competent in throwing the frisbee. Ben tells us the secrets and tactics to throwing the ultimate frisbee, he says getting the frisbee to go where you want it to go, get it to go straight. If you don't hold the disc flat, it curves, good players use that angle to make it curve around people, to teammates. But if you can't get it flat and get it to go straight then that tends to be where people come unstuck.

Ben the traveller

Travel is a BIG thing for Ben, which stemmed from his childhood, his father was a PE teacher and every year would organise the school skiing trip, as soon as Ben could pretty much walk he was on a ski slope two to three months of the year. Ben would then spend the week skiing in the Alps. Ben grew up to be a confident skier, and by his own admission took it for granted that not everybody skied for three months of the year, on the dry slope and then went somewhere snowy.

It was only when Ben got older and met people who couldn't ski that he suddenly realised that actually his dad's job and the free places he got on the ski trip was really a kind of lucky thing to be able to do. Ben fell in love with the mountains from those experiences.

The travel probably was linked to his love of the beach and the sea. And the fact that the best waves, in this country, are in the coldest conditions. The colder and stormier it is, the better the surf is, but he think’s of the West Sea. Ben also has a love for surfing and has surfed the waves in Belize.

Ben has developed a tolerance of the cold, more than a love, and tells us that some of the products out now are amazing for example, dry rayon towels, they're really thick, they're not cheap, but it makes a huge difference getting changed, because a lot of it's wind chill. Given the choice even with his towel, cold or Belize, Ben say’s it would be Belize, any day.

What's Ben’s main business normally about?

Ben is slowly moving away from tennis coaching, which has always been his profession. Ben runs multi-sport holiday camps for children, called High 5 Sports Camps. And they run out of three sites now, in Devon. Ben would like to see that grow and really develop. It’s the key thing he spends a lot of his time on. Ben also acquired, Bubble Football, which if anybody doesn't know what Bubble Football is, they're giant inflatable balls that you get inside, your legs poke out the bottom, you have a harness and some hand straps. Then you run into other people and bash each other with a high chance of landing upside down! A real laugh out loud game.

Ben has moved away from being the face of the business or being the business certainly with the tennis coaching side of things, he’s done it for twenty years, so it has been a big part of his life. But as the business grew, it become all about him and his business partner.They were the faces and the ones that everybody wanted, but there are so many hours in one day, so they decided to bring on new people but those people wouldn't be as passionate or they wouldn't be as trained. There's quite a few hoops to jump through to be a qualified tennis coach, so, finding staff, training staff, keeping staff, was a challenge as well.

When did it all change?

For Ben, it all changed when he had children. When Ben’s first child was born, his hours on the tennis programme were 7:15 to 8:45, four mornings a week, before school and some adult stuff during the day, admin in the afternoon and then coach 4:00 'til 7:00pm after school, coach all Saturday morning 'til 2:00 in the afternoon. And he suddenly realised that he had a son that didn't really know him ,and his wife was single person parenting and that wasn't sustainable long term.

Ben’s mind set started to change and he started to think that perhaps, he needed to find a different way. Ben feels it doesn't matter how much money you've got, your time is more valuable to kids than any amount of money or any five-star holiday. “I think for me, it took me a little while to suddenly realise that my presence was more important. And as I started to realise that, that was the big thing for me.”

So what does an Ambitious Lifestyle Business look like to Ben?

For Ben, it's the freedom of time and that doesn't mean all his time because everybody has to do something otherwise you would be retired. It's the freedom of time to be able to make choices about when he works and that doesn't mean that he doesn’t ever want to work. Ben is happy to be put into situations where, at certain times of the year, he has to work. This includes working long hours at some points, but actually, for periods of the year, he is able to step back and say “okay I'm going to do the school run every day” or  ”I'm going to spend the weekends with my family” or  “We're going to book those holidays and we're going to spend some time at the beach or we can spend some time in the mountains”.

“I'm happy to work hard as long as I can play hard”.

Time to climb a mountain…

Ben has recently completed six peaks in six different countries over a 2-month period. Ben wanted to do something BIG for his 40thand has spent many evenings, looking up at Mont Blanc and talking about the fact that it's a pretty impressive mountain, he has talked many times about climbing it. Initially it was only going to be the one mountain, that was until Ben met Ruth from a charity called Families for Children and it all changed!! To find out what Ben did click play……..

For links to everything we talk about, including the video recording of the episode and transcription of everything we talked about, head over to the show notes at bigidea.co.uk/podcast.

And to watch the LIVE recording of each episode of the Ambitious. Lifestyle. Business. Podcast, join our Facebook Group for FREE - you can then watch our ugly mugs in glorious technicolour every month, as well as get BONUS in-between-isodes, and direct access to both of us to ask any questions about this, or any other episode.

Oct 3, 2019

 ALB57 – The Man who stood on an IED

 Who is Mark Ormrod?

 On Christmas Eve, 2007 Royal Marines Commando, Mark Ormrod was out on a routine foot patrol in the Helmand Province of Afghanistan when he stepped on and triggered an Improvised Explosive Device. He was airlifted via helicopter to an emergency field hospital when an innovative and dangerous procedure saved his life. He woke up three days later back in the UK with both legs amputated above the knee and his right arm amputated above the elbow. He was the UK's first triple amputee to survive the Afghanistan conflict. Doctors told Mark that he'd never walk again and that he should prepare himself for the rest of his life in a wheelchair. Mark thought otherwise, though. And he hasn't used a wheelchair since 2009. 

 Today, Mark Ormrod is a motivational speaker, performance coach, mentor and role model to other amputees, and an ambassador for the Royal Marines Association. He's also the star of a documentary called "No Limits," gold medal winning athlete at the Invictus Games, and is currently writing the follow up to his 2010 autobiography, "Man Down." 

 Mark the Royal Marine….

 Mark joined the Marines heated and focused and just wanted to grow as an individual and squeeze the most out of this short time that we get on the planet. Mark finished his training when he was 18. Just a young lad, who by his own admission put a green beret on his head, and thought he was Rambo. Mark spent a couple of years just enjoying it. He was born and bred here in Plymouth. He say’s “once you earn that beret you walk around your chest out a little bit”, he got in a little bit in trouble, the first couple years, but then he knuckled down, and got focused. Mark has always been that kind of forward driven kind of way. 

 Mark the Marine, in the beginning, young, loving life, full of energy. Just out there being a lad. As we all do as we get older and we progress in our careers and our lives, we mature a little bit. 

Mark made a lot more mistakes back then, but he learnt from them, and moved on, some of the quote-unquote failures that he experienced, and the mistakes that he made, made Mark feel a bit down about them, but as he’s got older he’s realised, they weren't really failures, as he’s learnt from them, they were mistakes, but again, he’s learnt from them. 


People always ask Mark has he always been this way, has he always been motivated, driven, and the short answer is yes. 

But from his perspective, it took him losing both his legs and right arm for him to see it. 


Mark’s first taste of combat…..

Mark was 19 when he had his first taste of combat. He had started his training in February 2001. 62 young lads started, only 12 of them made it through the training. 

Four weeks before Mark finished his training, and was halfway through the live fire exercises, he was in the NAAFI and witnessed 9-11. 

So Mark passed out and become a Royal Marine, it was looking likely that Mark would be deploying to Afghanistan early 2002 for ‘Operation Jacana’. Now, for whatever reason, that didn't happen to the scale it was meant to be. It became quite a SS, Special Forces kind of thing. 

So Mark didn't go after all, but then Iraq came around 2003. That then became his focus, Mark was one of the first guys on the ground, working out of what's called now 30 Commando. Mark spent a couple weeks in Kuwait, just waiting, sat in trenches, just on that border of Kuwait, Iraq, ready to go over, he got given the signal and went.

Mark came away from that tour feeling a little bit disappointed. He was all geared up, ready to put to test everything he had been training for but that didn’t happen, he thought he was going to be down on his belt buckle with a bayonet in his teeth crawling through the sand and doing this for three months solid, because he was a young lad and thought that's what going to war was.


What happened next?

So, Mark came home, despite the lack of activity in Iraq he still felt like he had evolved a lot. He went to Norway a couple of times, endured some survival training out in the snow. Mark then boxed for the Marines a spot had come up for the boxing team, and he thought that would be all right, he would do a little bit of training in the morning and go home in the afternoon. He underestimated that, four hours every morning, four hours every afternoon for eight weeks solid.

But Mark began to think about the fact, he hadn't really done what it was that he wanted to do. His first daughter Kezia came along early 2005 and the combination led to Mark making the decision to leave the Royal Marines in early in 2006. 

Mark ended up working as a night doorman for a little bit. Mark was entitled to some money through the re-education system in the military, and flew out to South Africa, to retrain as a bodyguard, he was now 22 years old at that point, and thought he’d be walking around in an Armani suit, talking into his cuff, diving around protecting celebrities and that isn't what the job entails. In fact he struggled to get a job , despite having a green beret, despite having experience at war, despite having qualified at a really prestigious close protection training school in South Africa people wouldn't take him on, because he didn't know anybody to get my foot in the door. 

Time to re-join the Royal Marines……….

So, after a little period of soul searching, life not going great, really not happy with the way things were heading, Mark decided to re-join the Marines, which he did early 2007. He re-joined to 40 Commando who are based up in Taunton, and were next in the roster to go to Afghanistan. Mark did have a choice where he could have gone, it was either the Commando training centre in Exmouth which is a non-deployable unit, or 40 Commando who are next on the rotation. And he kind of felt it would have been a good tour for him.

He didn't know what to expect. He was basing it on my tour in Iraq, but because his life wasn't where he wanted it to be, he thought it would be healthy to get out of the country, just get away from all the distractions and things going on, reassess his life, reprioritize, come back and take it in a more positive direction. So, he asked to go to 40 Commando, Mark got to the unit, went through all the pre-deployment training, and he knew from the minute he did that it was going to be different because the training was different. It was a lot more intense, a lot more in detail. 

Mark deployed for Afghanistan the 7th of September, 2007.

Christmas Eve 2007 – 

Christmas Eve, Mark and a group of his friends were called up to the headquarters compound and given a brief on the next foot patrol. It was a very brief brief, because the idea was that we they would leave the rear entrance of their camp in two sections with eight men in each section. One goes north, one goes south. They were told to patrol the immediate perimeter of the camp and not go any more than 300 metres. Before that, these patrols would be out for four, five, six miles. Eight, nine, ten hours. It was just a quick get your boots out on the ground, show the enemy watching you that you're still out there doing something, even though we're not really doing anything, come back in the front entrance of the camp, so now the opposite side, and then you have a couple of days R&R, open your cards and care packages from home, and try your best to enjoy Christmas, given the circumstances. 

When Mark and his fellow marines had nearly completed this routine foot patrol, Mark was required to get down on to his stomach, and as his right knee hit the floor, he knelt on and detonated an Improvised Explosive Device. 

Mark goes into detail about what happened immediately after this happened in the podcast. 


Strict procedures and processes got Mark out of there quickly and safely……

The team completely followed the procedure, from a military perspective, the key is discipline. It's the discipline that's beaten into them from day one. That there are these procedures and systems in place for a reason. And the reason is, it saves lives. And that's exactly what it did for Mark that day. 

Mark is told he will never walk again……….. 

Mark spent about four days trying to process what the Dr had told him and then figured out a plan forward. He didn’t know anything about being disabled. About six days after a guy came to visit Mark. His name was Mick Brennan, he had been injured in Iraq 2005. He walked into the hospital room with two prosthetic legs above the knee And he sat down and told Mark his story, told Mark what he had achieved, what Mark could expect to achieve. Mark started to research  triple amputees, prosthetics, just searching all over the world to see anybody who had his injuries that was living their life without being confined to a wheelchair. And he found some people and that was a massive motivator.

In that instant, the impossible became possible.

What Mark has achieved since is truly remarkable, but you will have to click play to discover just how remarkable.

For links to everything we talk about, including the video recording of the episode and transcription of everything we talked about, head over to the show notes at bigidea.co.uk/podcast.

And to watch the LIVE recording of each episode of the Ambitious. Lifestyle. Business. Podcast, join our Facebook Group for FREE - you can then watch our ugly mugs in glorious technicolour every month, as well as get BONUS in-between-isodes, and direct access to both of us to ask any questions about this, or any other episode.

Sep 5, 2019

 ALB56 – The Japanese Trainspotter

Who is Chris King?
Chris has built a business around his greatest passions - travel, riding trains and Japanese food. Originally from the UK, Chris King now lives in Osaka, Japan, and spends a lot of his time travelling by train in Japan, Britain, Asia and Europe.

Chris started the Train Hacker website when he was living in Britain to help people save money on rail travel. The project then branched out to Europe and Japan, helping train travellers find cheaper train tickets, rail passes, tours and holidays.

While travelling by Shinkansen bullet train in Japan, Chris was astonished at the amazing tastes and rich diversity of Japanese food - he had to discover more, and a new project “Food Tours Japan” was born. Now, Chris is exploring the wonderful world of washoku and keen to show that there’s so much more to Japan than sushi.

Chris is a longstanding one percenter and has built a business around some of his greatest passions, which include travel, trains, and a love for Japanese food. Originally from the UK, Chris now lives in Osaka, Japan as a digital nomad and spends a lot of his time travelling by train in Japan, Britain, Asia, and Europe.

Let’s go back to how John and Chris met
Chris and John met over a decade ago and when they met, Chris was not a digital nomad, as he is today and was not living in Japan, writing about food and bullet trains.

Chris spent eight and a half years working for BT he worked with some really bright people and managed to get involved in a lot of digital stuff. Everything from kind of online customer experience to e-commerce but the most enjoyable bit for Chris and the bit he had most involvement was affiliate marketing. 

Affiliate marketing in the “Wild West” days
Chris started off working in the affiliate team at BT.

Chris had a really good boss and worked with really good people and feels they embraced it really early. Chris was in a sales team, which meant he was on quarterly sales bonuses whereas as you know today, most affiliate marketing is in the marketing department. 

But the sales team were heavily incentivized, and he had some really golden years with bonuses. So that was their one thing that made them really unique and Chris also feels because they were in sales, it also helped them build on the relationship side. Essentially, they were very soft in their approach really to affiliate marketing.

Affiliate marketing and it’s reputation

Chris tells us he felt affiliate marketing had a kind of a bit of a bad reputation and he thinks it probably still does within agencies. That said, the model has stood the test of time. 

Chris recommends anyone that has a small company to embrace affiliate marketing. There's a few networks out there and there's technologies out there that if you are a small company, Chris says it's like a virtual sales force. 

How did Chris become a digital nomad?

The reason Chris wanted to get out of the corporate world is because he wasn't prepared to sit around and wait for my pension, Chris wanted to see the world. He didn’t want to see the world when he was 60, he wanted to see the world whilst he was young. And then that kind of led from one thing to another. 

Chris went travelling for six months. Come back and started a business. He now feels that after travelling in India for six months, it was maybe not the best state of mind to come back and start a business. His first publishing business didn't really work that well. Then he did consultancy, but he had that itch to travel again. 

The birth of the ‘Digital Nomad’

Chris needed to go to India to just cleanse his soul really, just to restart his life. It was here he realised he could travel and run his business at the same time. Whilst out there, he was doing research for his travel clients and also starting some travel projects. So, the digital nomad thing kind of came out of a whole load of things coming together.

Chris aka the train hacker
Chris started the Train Hacker website when he was living in Britain to help people save money on their rail travel. The project then branched out to Europe and Japan, his aim was to help train travellers find cheaper train tickets, rail passes, tours, and holidays. 

Why Japan? A love story...

One, the train travel projects was leading him down that route because Chris started the Train Hacker when he was living in Britain to help people save money on their rail travel. The project then branched out to Europe and Japan, his aim was to help train travellers find cheaper train tickets, rail passes, tours, and holidays. He was in and out of Asia and realised, he found Asia a lot more of a mellow place to be. Also, these days it's where the growth is, Chris just loves the kind of free entrepreneurial style that things were done in those countries. 

Chris met his wife who's Japanese at a train station actually in Vietnam. This was a moment to Chris who thought to himself, he was working in train travel, why was he not writing about more inspiring stuff like train travel in Japan?

From that point onwards Chris focused more on Japan travel projects. He could see there was an opportunity there. There was a lack of content being published and what was being published about travel in Japan was what he found seemed to be quite inaccurate. So, he decided to go out to Japan and do some research for my business over there.

The BIG house and the BIG car...

Not for Chris, he has old friends who he’s met up with, they are loaded. They've got three cars. They've got massive houses. They've got big gardens. One thing they say to him all the time is they don't have any time. 

Chris say’s you kind of make the choice. There are other ways you can live your life. And too many people have kind of fallen for the got to have a big house, got to have a car, got to have this, got to have that. And you don't really need that. 

You can work where you want. There are so many more opportunities now to set up a business. There's so much more help now like the One Percent Club and so many books. You know, there's so many people, so much stuff out there which can help you now start a business. So yeah, you don't need to do that guys and ladies. Give it up now.

Freedom...
Chris just wanted freedom more than anything else and of course it goes without saying he’s ambitious. He wants to make money, but he values his  freedom more than just purely money and material things. 

How has the One Percent Club helped Chris? 

It helps him focus and with his time management. Working with John and Jason in a similar business which has been helpful but also the other people in the group, it is a diverse group of people and it's good to listen to them. Ultimately, focus, time management and accountability.

How Chris’s love for Japanese food led to another business opportunity

While travelling Shinkansen (the bullet train) in Japan, Chris was astonished at the amazing tastes and rich diversity of Japanese food. He had to discover more and a new project, Food Tours Japan was born, click play to find out more. 


For links to everything we talk about, including the video recording of the episode and transcription of everything we talked about, head over to the show notes at bigidea.co.uk/podcast.

And to watch the LIVE recording of each episode of the Ambitious. Lifestyle. Business. Podcast, join our Facebook Group for FREE - you can then watch our ugly mugs in glorious technicolour every month, as well as get BONUS in-between-isodes, and direct access to both of us to ask any questions about this, or any other episode.

Aug 1, 2019

This episode is with soon to be black belt wielding, wedding singer Jamie Reeves from The Best Singing Waiters. 

So,who is Jamie?

Jamie started out as a DJ when he was just 16 years old and travelled around Europe at the age of 20 as a singer. After establishing himself as a Robbie Williams tribute act, he set up his own entertainment agency and started managing various different tribute acts including Take That, Meatloaf and Amy Winehouse. Jamies’ entertainment agency was primarily aimed at the wedding market, and that is where the idea for “’The Singing Waiters’ come along.  

Jamie is also a keen singer songwriter and has even had his own top ten hit on itunes. He has written and worked with people whose credits include Beyonce, Take That and Sir Paul McCartney. 

You might also have seen Jamie in several episodes of Eastenders, riding a moped through Albert Square. But not if you blinked…

What is a singing waiter?

Everybody has probably been to a wedding, corporate event, birthday etc and typically you will have an idea of how the day will run. 

This is where The Best Singing Waiters come in, they take the ordinary and make it more extraordinary. After dessert has been served, they spring into action, suddenly breaking with their “waiter” character, and bursting out into song, getting everyone singing along and essentially break every type of rule you can think of when it comes to party etiquette. They literally get the party started! 

The “reveal” is something that you simply have to see to believe (They have more than 900 videos on their YouTube channel), and it’s this magic moment that wedding guests talk about for years to come.

What does an Ambitious Lifestyle Business look like for Jamie?

Jamie is a married proud dad of three, so for him it’s all about being with the family. Two of the three children are sports minded and love football, karate and dance and the two-and-a-half-year-old is just into everything!!  

For Jamie, working from home is a must – he has no desire to have an office (his office at home does look pretty smart though – check it out in the video!), however that doesn’t mean he is a one man band – Jamie has a team of staff, and has built robust systems and processes which enable him to have the freedom to work from home.  

He also still does some gigs, performing between six and ten gigs per year. Clearly, Jamie’s company do a LOT more gigs than that – more like 200 a year. But again, Jamie has no desire to be racing up and down the motorways of Britain on a daily basis, doing back-to-back weddings, and spending every weekend away from his family.

 

How did Jamie design his business to deliver his ambitious lifestyle business?

As with most guests on the ALB podcast, it was a bit of design, and a bit of luck! 

As a literal one-man-band, Jamie started to get more and more offers of gigs, that with the best will in the world he simply couldn’t keep up with, so he brought on some singers to lighten the load. 

Before he knew it, that turned into a team of six singers. 

Similar to how Jon Monks told us back in ALB44 that he was “the conductor of the orchestra”, Jamie directs his team, and designs the systems and processes from his home office, so that multiple weddings can all happen at the same time, at opposite ends of the country, and all whilst Jamie is sat at a football match with his family. 

Whilst he did reference Jon Monk’s “conductor of the orchestra” comment though, Jamie explained that his version was a bit more like “waving your arms about and blagging it!” 

Jamie firmly believes that the key to running any business is down to the processes and systems that are in place. (If you want to go deep on systems and processes, have another listen to ALB14, where we look at the story of Ray Kroc, and McDonalds, through the lens of the movie The Founder. 

For Jamie, admin was the first to go – as a creative person, this was something he just did not enjoy, so he was very quick to get someone else doing the paperwork.  Every single thing that he does within the business is fully documented, so that a team member can follow the exact processes to the letter. 

Jamie also likes to record videos of himself on zoom performing key tasks and pop it into a shared dropbox folder, so it is accessible to all of his team, and they can all see visually, exactly what Jamie wants to happen – every time.

Is Jamie a Routine Machine? 

When Jamie started a family, all of his routines changed. He now feels extremely lucky that he works for himself, being able to pick and choose his own hours.  

He doesn’t have to miss a sports day, he can take his son to football and his daughter to dance classes, and he believes that it is all thanks to putting those routines, systems and processes in place.  

As an ambitious, lifestyle business owner, Jamie can dictate life on his own terms.  Routine plays a really important part of this for Jamie. If you want to become a Routine Machine, then you can now grab a free chapter of John’s latest bestselling book of the same name.

How has the One Percent Club helped Jamie?

Jamie’s main reason for joining the One Percent Club was to align himself with like minded people who all have similar values. He read John’s first book (Big Ideas… for Small Businesses), and he wanted a platform that enabled him to be closer to John and Jason to copy their model.  

As John says in Big Ideas… “Who you hang around with REALLY matters. We’ve all heard it said that ‘you are the sum of the five people closest to you’, or ‘your network is your net worth’.  

Well, this is one cliché that is true. That immediate environment around you sculpts who you are. 

Your best chance of becoming a millionaire is to hang around with five millionaires – their habits, routines, ways of thinking, ability to spot an opportunity, the language they use, the networks they have access to. 

This will all rub off on you via osmosis, and before you know it, you’re millionaire number six.”

3 Grades away from a Black Belt

Health and well-being are important to Jamie and he is currently only 3 grades away from obtaining his black belt in Karate.  

Jamie believes that the skills learnt from Karate can be transferred into his business life and his own personal development.  He feels they are similar in the sense of continual repetition, for example making his kicks sharper and harder, learning how to block faster and be more in touch, becoming more flexible. 

He’s also not afraid of groundhog day, he embraces the boring repetition, repetition, repetition that ultimately leads to success, whether in martial arts, or in business. 

Top ten hit on iTunes

Jamie wrote a song for his wife when they got married in Jamaica. The song was called ‘Let’s get married’ and it hit the top ten reggae chart on iTunes, up there with alongside legendary Bob Marley, Shaggy and Kevin Little. How long did Jamie hold his spot in the top ten?  

You’ll have to listen to the podcast to find out!

For links to everything we talk about, including the video recording of the episode and transcription of everything we talked about, head over to the show notes at bigidea.co.uk/podcast.

And to watch the LIVE recording of each episode of the Ambitious. Lifestyle. Business. Podcast, join our Facebook Group for FREE - you can then watch our ugly mugs in glorious technicolour every month, as well as get BONUS in-between-isodes, and direct access to both of us to ask any questions about this, or any other episode.

Jul 4, 2019

 

#ALB54 - Routine Machine

 

This episode is a little different from the norm - it’s a LIVE reading (complete with some stumbles) of a few chapters from John Lamerton’s latest book on habits and routines - Routine Machine.

 

Why did John write a morning routine book?

Last August John was on holiday in sunny Corfu with his family, whilst there he started plotting out some notes, he did this with a view to writing a potential second book, a follow up to the successful Big Ideas... for Small Businesses

 

John famously said he was never writing again, he was NEVER doing a second book, but four or five pages of notes later it became apparent that he was in fact going to be writing a second book. This podcast takes a look at his new book, Routine Machine, which is available from the 11th July 2019.

 

The power of routine, not just a morning routine but successful strategies and daily habits to make you more successful. It is written primarily for small business owners - if Big Ideas... for Small Businesses was about focus, doing the right thing, choosing the right thing to focus on, then Routine Machine is about doing the right thing consistently, every time, habitually….. ROUTINELY!

 

How many days does it take to form a habit?

John earned £13.51 in his first nine months in business.

 

Nine months later, he quit his job. Nine months after that, he was earning over £100k a year. 

 

Warren Buffett bought his first stock in 1941, he was a millionaire by 1960 and surpassed the $1 billion mark in 1986. 

 

$19 billion of his $86 billion-dollar fortune has been made in the last 2 years. 

 

It’s going to be a while before you see any feedback or results from any changes you make now.

 

When John replaced his go-to lunch of beans on toast with a healthy green juice, he saw absolutely no effect on the first day, or the second, or the third, but 30 days later he could see a difference. A year later and he looked like a different person. There is always a delay between the routine change and the feedback, that is perfectly normal and to be expected. 

 

John and Jason discuss why expecting instant rewards just doesn’t work.

 

There is always a delay between the action and the result. That concept can also work on a negative point too - one KFC now and then isn’t going to make a huge difference, but a KFC a few times a week might, and a KFC every day almost certainly will.

Routine Quotes from John

“Remember, you are the compound effect of every decision you have ever made and every action you have ever taken. The little habits and routines that on their own seem so small and insignificant, when rolled down the hill of time, yield massive snowballs”.

 

'If you want new results, you need new routines, but they've got to work for you. copying someone else just isn't going to help in the slightest. The routine doesn't matter what matters is that you have a routine'. 

 

"When I replaced my go to lunch of beans on toast with a healthy green juice, I saw absolutely no effect on the first day, or the second, or third. But 30 days later, I could see.a difference, a year later I looked like a different person. There is always a delay between the routine change and the feedback, that is perfectly normal and to be expected".

For links to everything we talk about, including the video recording of the episode and transcription of everything we talked about, head over to the show notes at bigidea.co.uk/podcast.

And to watch the LIVE recording of each episode of the Ambitious. Lifestyle. Business. Podcast, join our Facebook Group for FREE - you can then watch our ugly mugs in glorious technicolour every month, as well as get BONUS in-between-isodes, and direct access to both of us to ask any questions about this, or any other episode.

Jun 6, 2019

In this episode John and Jason are joined by special guest Clarke Duncan.

Who is Clarke Duncan?

Clarke was John’s very first business mentor back in the day and he also appeared heavily in John’s first book ‘Big Ideas for Small Businesses’

“I was very lucky when I first started my business – there were a number of people, who at first glance would appear to be my competitors – those who ran similar businesses to mine. And for some reason, they were happy to share tips, tactics, and ideas with me. They’d tell me where I was going wrong, and how I could improve my business and make more money. (The reason they were happy to share so freely, was because they had a growth mindset, rather than a scarcity one. They knew that if everyone helped each other out, we’d all make fewer mistakes, and everyone’s business benefited – if someone helps me out, and my business grows as a result, theirs doesn’t shrink – it actually grows too, as I then share something I’ve found with them – it’s a virtuous circle!)

I didn’t know it at the time, but Clarke and Jason were my very first mentors – they’re the people who gave me an arm around the shoulder when I needed it, and a kick up the arse when I needed that. They told me what worked, what didn’t, and they probably saved me months and months of trying stuff that wouldn’t work, and brought in many thousands of pounds of additional revenue in those crucial early years.”

In this podcast, Clarke gives us an insight to his own successes and experiences of affiliate marketing, which he has done for the last 17 years and certainly shows no signs of slowing down either.

Clarke is the founder of affiliate marketing network Paid on Results, as well as unlimited design agency Bee All Design

Clarke works WITH his competitors….

He talks about how he has never looked at other affiliates as competition, but more like-minded people all working together to try and make something happen and revisits the days where he was a part of the ‘Limo Club’.

How Clarke spots opportunities…

Clarke runs numerous succesful businesses from Spain, including a family one, and talks about the pro’s and con’s that some of these entail.

But is he an opportunity hunter or is there more to it…….

He tells us that he starts off by seeing a set of circumstances and then works out if there is any money to be made, is there something he can do that someone else isn’t? He explains how if you’re solving problems for people you tend to make money easier than making something up and trying to convince them that they need it.

What does an Ambitious.Lifestyle.Business. look like for Clarke?

His family time is plentiful but in his extra time Clarke enjoys working, watching video’s that are sometimes over two hours long, but the amount he takes from them he considers these a great investment of his time https://www.bigidea.co.uk/7-ways-to-get-more-done-in-less-time/

He has two golden rules regarding his staff;

1) Be truthful

2) Be a nice person, get on with others and be onboard with each other

This is very important to Clarke for many different reasons which he explains in more detail in the episode.

How has Brexit affected Clarke’s business?

Brexit has been a HUGE discussion point for all businesses, the uncertainity of it all has had some small businesses losing sleep, but was it detrimental or another golden opportunity for Clarke?

How has the One Percent Club helped Clarke?

Clarke talks about being a member of the One Percent Club and how he values it, how it benefits him and how he would rather look stupid one time and know how to do it, then to not ask the question and be forever stupid! https://www.bigidea.co.uk/opcc

For links to everything we talk about, including the video recording of the episode and transcription of everything we talked about, head over to the show notes at bigidea.co.uk/podcast.

And to watch the LIVE recording of each episode of the Ambitious. Lifestyle. Business. Podcast, join our Facebook Group for FREE - you can then watch our ugly mugs in glorious technicolour every month, as well as get BONUS in-between-isodes, and direct access to both of us to ask any questions about this, or any other episode.

May 2, 2019

In this episode John and Jason are joined by Elaine Colliar.

Elaine is the Five Times World Mind Mapping Champion and Grand Master Trainer for Tony Buzan International Ltd.

Tony Buzan was Elaine's mentor, tragically since recording this podcast in March, Tony suffered a heart attack and sadly passed away.

This episode is dedicated to Tony, a name we are sure you will still hear and talk of in many many years to come when discussing the world of Mind Mapping, a true gift that Tony has left to the world.

For links to everything we talk about, including the video recording of the episode and transcription of everything we talked about, head over to the show notes at bigidea.co.uk/podcast.

And to watch the LIVE recording of each episode of the Ambitious. Lifestyle. Business. Podcast, join our Facebook Group for FREE - you can then watch our ugly mugs in glorious technicolour every month, as well as get BONUS in-between-isodes, and direct access to both of us to ask any questions about this, or any other episode.

Apr 4, 2019
In this episode we are joined by Carly Freemont of 'Freemont Property Solutions' based in Plymouth. 
 
Carly talks to us about her career as a professional dancer and how this took an unexpected turn, but more importantly how she overcome this with a positive attitude and threw herself into a brand new venture. 
 
Discover what Freemont Property Solutions offer, how Carly continues to focus on her self-development, plus much more. 
 
For links to everything we talk about, including the video recording of the episode and transcription of everything we talked about, head over to the show notes at bigidea.co.uk/podcast.

And to watch the LIVE recording of each episode of the Ambitious. Lifestyle. Business. Podcast, join our Facebook Group for FREE - you can then watch our ugly mugs in glorious technicolour every month, as well as get BONUS in-between-isodes, and direct access to both of us to ask any questions about this, or any other episode.

Mar 7, 2019

In this episode we are joined by transformative coach and certified psychotherapist Jason Shiers. Join us for an in-depth discussion around mindset, designing your life around decisions, using creativity and much more.

For links to everything we talk about, including the video recording of the episode and transcription of everything we talked about, head over to the show notes at bigidea.co.uk/podcast.

And to watch the LIVE recording of each episode of the Ambitious. Lifestyle. Business. Podcast, join our Facebook Group for FREE - you can then watch our ugly mugs in glorious technicolour every month, as well as get BONUS in-between-isodes, and direct access to both of us to ask any questions about this, or any other episode.

Feb 7, 2019

In today's episode we are joined by David Aggiss and Tom Boulden of Three Sixty Mortgages who are based in Plymouth.  

 
During this podcast we discuss, priorities making them and keeping them, how to obtain and maintain healthy business partnerships, what happens when someone wants to exit a partnership, shareholders, and much more.  
 
For links to everything we talk about, including the video recording of the episode and transcription of everything we talked about, head over to the show notes at bigidea.co.uk/podcast.

And to watch the LIVE recording of each episode of the Ambitious. Lifestyle. Business. Podcast, join our Facebook Group for FREE - you can then watch our ugly mugs in glorious technicolour every month, as well as get BONUS in-between-isodes, and direct access to both of us to ask any questions about this, or any other episode.

Jan 3, 2019
First podcast of 2019 - New Year Special 
 
"Time above all else"
 
"Looking at opportunities from a different perspective"
 
"If I am saying yes to this, what am I saying no to? Something's got to give" 
 
Following on from John Lamerton interviewing Jason brockman, this episode sees the tables turned with the interviewer becoming the interviewee. 
 
This podcast talks about John's 2018's resolutions what were they?
 
Did he keep them?
 
What is in store for 2019?
 
For links to everything we talk about, including the video recording of the episode and transcription of everything we talked about, head over to the show notes at bigidea.co.uk/podcast.

And to watch the LIVE recording of each episode of the Ambitious. Lifestyle. Business. Podcast, join our Facebook Group for FREE - you can then watch our ugly mugs in glorious technicolour every month, as well as get BONUS in-between-isodes, and direct access to both of us to ask any questions about this, or any other episode.

 
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