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An Interview w/ Dan Waldschmidt & Patrick Garner

March 17, 2018

An Interview w/ Dan Waldschmidt & Patrick Garner
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In this episode of Marketing Made Sense Ryan sits down with Dan Waldschmidt and Patrick Garner - two outrageously successful business men now working out of Greenville South Carolina. Dan is an international business speaker/strategist and the author of Edgy Conversations: How Ordinary People Can Achieve Outrageous Success. Dan and Patrick speak about their personal business journey's and their radical new self/business improvement program they are launching . A truly memorable episode!


In this episode of Marketing Made Sense Ryan sits down with Dan Waldschmidt and Patrick Garner - two outrageously successful business men now working out of Greenville South Carolina. Dan is an international business speaker/strategist and the author of Edgy Conversations: How Ordinary People Can Achieve Outrageous Success. Dan and Patrick speak about their personal business journey's and their radical new self/business improvement program they are launching . A truly memorable episode!

Transcript

Teaser: This is the Marketing Made Sense Podcast. Here's your host Ryan Alford. 

Ryan Alford [00:00:07] Hey, guys, Ryan Alford here with the Marketing Made Sense podcast. Really excited about today's episode. I've got a good and an old friend you've probably heard of. I am really excited to get their journeys on tape here or should I say digital tape. Anyway, I'm excited to have Patrick Garner. Patrick and I played basketball growing up in high school. Patrick was a little bigger and a little better than me and went on to play some college ball and then ultimately football, multitalented. Want to get to know his business journey into marketing. And then, Dan Waldschmidt, who's the author of Edgy Conversations. You'll see him on Twitter with the Get Edgy Program. He's all over the place. He's a pro in this space. So he'll have to bear with us as we get down to brass tacks. But really excited to have them on. I would like Dan to talk about his journey and what led him into all of these aspects of personal improvement and his take on business and marketing. And then they've got a venture here. We're in Greenville, South Carolina, and they've got an exciting new venture that they're bringing to life. So I want to get their story around that and where they want to go with that and how they're really differentiating that versus the sea of personal improvement, business improvement. They've got a really interesting take on that which I think would be great to hear about and excited to bring out that story. So it's great to have you. Patrick, let's start with you, man. Since Wade Hampton High School days, it's been a while. Talk to us about your business journey and where you've landed today. 

Patrick Garner [00:02:18] I appreciate it, Ryan. I graduated from Furman University. After that, trying to find my way and actually make some money instead of purging money from my parents. So I found an awesome opportunity, moved to the Northeast, worked extremely hard, had a lot of fun, but had the need to move back here and ended up taking a position probably like the worst job I've ever had. But it was like the best thing that ever happened to me. I figured out exactly how not to run a business and how not to do things. Quite frankly, I got a little discouraged when I saw the big corporate approach to clients, which they don't really care about. It's all about the bottom line, no matter who lives or dies. Once I worked through that, it got merely corrected. I did bust ass no matter what. I found an opportunity to partner with a company. It's a private company based in Cleveland, Ohio. It's an opportunity to partner with an awesome group of people. The polar opposite of what I was used to, they are driven by service, making people happy and really you kicking ass along with the company. I mean, they want that to happen. They want you to drive the business and drive yourself.  When I got that opportunity in 2006, I got a year into it and realized that I was nowhere near where I needed to be with any skill sets to take full advantage of the opportunity. That pissed me off a little bit. But, I understood true self-reflection.  I saw that a lot of things were tough. But once I got over the pity party, I started looking for ways how I had to change this. How do I ride the ship? Take advantage of the opportunity? I had a brand new family go on with a son that was born in September. My focus and my passion and everything came out. Back to athletics that competitive spirit came back to the surface. It came back to me. I started looking for anything and everything that I could. I found a few things. Spent way more money than I should at the time. My wife looked at me one time when she saw how much I was spending on some things and it was not the best look for her. And I said, "You just gotta trust me." That look actually was a good thing. So I busted my mind. In ultimate humility, I realized that "Hey, look, we're going to make this work. We're going to make it happen." And what I found in that journey is like, "OK, I got to get back in shape. I have to get back to being who I am." I had to go search for the business part. I had to go search for the fitness part. And then, from a personal development standpoint, I knew, like, “Hey, look, let's wrap it all up”. So it's trying to be better in business. What I realized is all of the lessons I was learning were actually helping me be a better person, husband and father. I saw those things ramping up and they focused on all and being as good as I could be there. And in turn, the business followed. I was happier than ever. I felt more fulfilled with what I was doing. I had that focus. I was quite getting my learning curve. Doing all of these things was pretty steep because I was filling in the blanks myself and I was having to screw up way more than I wanted to learn those lessons. And so I've been hopefully killing it for the most part for about 11 years now. Ever since I saw that life transformation, I wanted to figure out a vehicle to bring that to other people. I've truly been searching for that and wanting to do that and driven to do that for the last four to five years. Dan and I, I guess, it's been almost a year now. 

 We were talking about a lot of different things. But, the core was he and I, to the fabric, believe the same stuff and believe that there's a lot of lazy people there and that could be better. They just need rewinding. They need that humility. We all think that we know it all. We're the best, and unfortunately, we're just not. But you could be better. You can do these things. You've got to believe it, and you have to have people believing in the right direction. And I experienced that. And now, Dan and I in our world do that. 

Ryan Alford [00:08:30] I want to hear Dan's take on that. What's fascinating to me and what I see is the difference here in you reading some of Dan's stuff. We think of these things in silos. I'll be awesome at work, but it doesn't translate at home. I'll be awesome in the gym, but it doesn't translate to work. What I love about what I've heard about from you guys, what I've read from Dan, what I've heard from Patrick in our meetings and stuff is, it all works together at all. I think people are siloed in their minds. I think I go to work forever, but I wasn't always good in the gym. I wasn't always good at home.  I've gone through a divorce. When I go out and I'm in through hell like this, it's like I've come to realize it all. It's a machine gun. It's like one part of that where it all works together. I think that's probably a mental thing for people that I know that your program can help.

Dan Waldschmidt [00:09:30] We get obsessed about stuff. It's like most people operate the model that, if I have a bunch of money, I can do some incredible stuff and then I'll be happy, truly successful people like real competitors. What you now heard Patrick talk about is how they operate. They have a whole different model. Their model is if I am somebody, then I'll do amazing stuff. Then I might have money, but it doesn't really matter. They start with a B model instead of just have and that's probably the biggest misconception that is sold in and advertised all across the Internet. You know, "Have money and it'll solve all your problems." But, it just doesn't work. People work really hard at business. I got to make money. That'll make me happy, and then I can do all these other things. But, you just create these belief systems that just destroy you personally, emotionally, fitness-wise. I mean, we know that it's like depression. Two-thirds of people who suffer from depression never get help. So we've got this massive disease that's affecting a large majority of people we interact with on a daily basis. It's almost like if two-thirds of people walk with broken legs, you would get help for that. But we have leaders, grown people who are still acting like little kids. They're petty.  They're blaming other people like my kids do that stuff. I feel, “the fingers point seven directions and then we get older”. But we're now more polished. We're more aggressive. We play these games of business. I mean, you've seen it. We're really good now. We've learned all these tricks to try to deflect it. 

Patrick Garner [00:11:14] Instead of telling my kids that you act like a two-year-old, I actually compare them to people I talk to at work. I tell them, "you're acting like the guy that I just talked to today at my meeting”. That's not a compliment. But, you're exactly right, grown men acting like children. 

Dan Waldschmidt [00:11:42] Here's what's cool. Despite that being prevalent, despite that being an issue, change is easy. Change is actually really easy. I think perhaps the greatest example of this is just in my own family. I was in college and my mom called us and said, "Don't freak out, but your dad just had a heart attack." My dad was a deputy director of the NSA, and it was a year after 9/11. So there was a lot of stress, to say the least.  We didn't know who was doing what. This is before, we're officially listening. It was a lot of stress. She said, "He's OK." What’s funny is my dad's behavior. He came home. If you want to know where I get my stubbornness from, he basically grabbed one of the big black trash bags and just went to the covers and was like, this is trash, no butter, no salt. My mom had been bugging him for like a decade. Like, you need to watch what you eat, let me pack a lunch. He was like, "No, I got it." But, the second he ended up with a heart attack when it was a minor sort of thing, change happened in less than 24 hours. He lost weight. He's still in good health. He is in better health now than he was in his 40s. So change wasn't hard. It was the decision to change. And that's what we're attempting to do, is to help people realize, "Look, change is not hard. You think it's going to be hard, but change just starts with one simple step." Now the problem is you don't want to put yourself in a position where you have to change. Where things have gotten so bad, so ugly. You've destroyed so many things, burned so many bridges around you, that now it's only like survival. You're going to die if you don't change. That's just silly. You want to put yourself in a position where I can do minor changes today. That's even some of the ways. What's funny is when Patrick and I get together and talk about things, we're talking about what books we were reading. He set me up, "Oh, I was reading this book." I'm like, "oh, now I'm reading it."  Then what do you read? It's funny. I'll talk to leaders or people who call themselves thought leaders and say, "Hey, what do you read? They often seem clueless to answer and have nothing to tell me. I think that should change. A change is being around somebody who's constantly putting information into your head that just makes you better. Not that we read books to be like a billionaire overnight. We're both reading Jordan Belfort's book on making the life way of wealth where the West End is making more money. 

Dan Waldschmidt [00:14:22] Right. We're advertising and stuff. I know how to sell you. We've been through sand, we've been through all these programs. But do I know everything? Now, I'm hearing from a guy and I even texted him back and said,  “it reminds me of some of the stuff I've gotten sloggy about." So I can go through life and go, "I've got it". I don't need anybody's help. I'm Dan Waldschmidt, I'm Patrick Gardner,  I know what I'm doing. But instead, what if the change was just I'm going to spend the time I'm running where I listen to music or listen to whatever news channel instead of now listening to an ebook, an audiobook. It's just giving me those tiny per cent changes. 

Patrick Garner [00:15:03] Embrace the negativity and bring something to the table that you actually may change.

Dan Waldschmidt [00:15:08] Talk to us about things you were saying earlier when we had coffee this morning. We were talking about all this negativity. 

Patrick Garner [00:15:12] I think our society today is driven by women, no matter what your belief systems are. I just hear so many people complaining about everything and that mentality will absolutely talk about depression or whatever it is. In your mind that I'm a badass, but you show up and you're mad at something else other than work or you had a crappy night at the house with kids or whatever. If it's negative, you are not going to be your best. You're not going to be someone that any other people will be around. Dan is right.  Little changes. I have a news app on my phone. I couldn't take it anymore. I couldn't do it anymore. I'm sitting there and I make flashcards from books. The second I want to go look at something that might be negative, I pull my flashcards out. When I get a call that drains me, instead of being pissed off,  I read something about being a great man or something that says, “believe in yourself” and I'm much better on the call.  My kids do whatever it is. It's something little that might set me off before. I'm like, "OK, I was brave." It does make a big difference to me. If any time there needs to be someone who focuses on the good and that you can be a bold either again or be bold every day, no matter where you are. He and I believe that to the core, no matter where you are, you can be better and you can be more with your kids' sports. If you talk about all that stuff feeds positive men.

Ryan Alford [00:17:17] You talk about little changes. I'm a huge music guy and I love music. I'm in the car with my job. I drive around a lot doing sales and all the clients. Just this week, instead of listening, just random music or whatever, I heard an audiobook on U.S. traction, entrepreneurs operating systems. We're putting that into place here. But again, it was just that social change. Normally I'm just zoning out into music but that one changed because I've never been an audiobook guy.  The first time was audible. I'm a believer, but those subtle changes. So I was in the car for ten hours, at least absorbing some knowledge instead of just zoning out into negative thoughts, " Oh, what this client is going to say or whatever, what we need to do." But then, I'd love to get to know the listeners of the podcast. A lot of them probably know who you are, but I'd love just five minutes to know what led you to books? Let's hear some background in the book and all that above is good. 

Dan Waldschmidt [00:18:17] I was raised working hard. I was raised in a very strict Christian family with no TV in the home for 18 years. I had to read a book a day, practising the piano an hour a day for those of you who are thinking that's unbelievable, that's just how I was raised. My mom was Caucasian, but she was like the ultimate tiger mom. She said, “you will not have fun. You will learn”. My mindset was that way. I hit it hard at nineteen, had some mentors, studied Sandler and helped some stuff at a very early age. I was a wrecking ball and that works for a while. But then you look around, you see a lot of collateral damage.

Dan Waldschmidt [00:19:08] So we hit some stuff and it's gone. We went through the wall, but all twenty people around you, have bricks falling on their heads. I operate under this model for a while because it's all I knew was that raw. I'm not going to work on a Tuesday, come home on a Thursday. I was just working. I was passionate about what I'm doing. After I blew up my marriage and I think part of why I was so emotionally distraught by my situation, I was trying to figure it out. I was operating into this model of like Jesus loves me. I was operating on all these models that I've been raised on. And the first time in my life, none of it was working. I had money. But, the other parts of it were missing. So I thought, "OK, I gotta figure this thing out, and that led me to fast forward a decade and I’m still figuring it out. There's no period there. It's like a pretty big period. I said, “I'm an ordinary dude, so what are ordinary dudes who do awesome things doing”? What have they done throughout history? I thought I'd get five or six stories and I'd put together a model and then I actually got a tattoo that said "Let it Extremes”. I thought, "oh well they're extreme." That's what it is. Then I thought, "oh!" I was like, "Oh wait a minute, my model isn't right." Something's missing. It's not just extreme behavior, it's something else. I started digging and brought neuroscientist's on the team and a thousand stories later, a light bulb went off. Here's the genome. It's giving lots of value. It's being disciplined. It's about being extreme and then it's being human. It's the understanding of those human factors of like we are people we screw up, other people screw up, and understanding how all that works together. And then, of course, I built a couple of companies that were successful, had some failures that were epic as well. If the real story is if you look at all these failures, they're like, “oh, I want to be like you're. You are like a million dollar”. I don't know. You want to be like me minus all the stories you don't know. The version of me on stage where it's cloudy and that's what you want, but that's not real life.  I started sort of working for big companies as an employee. Built a consulting company accidentally, advising companies all over the world, big companies, billion-dollar companies, and using the genome with Edgy, helping to be extremely disciplined, giving a human to drive massive change. I was already thinking in my head like a little bit burned out. I'm not trying to be cynical or skeptical, but I just get tired of that collateral damage I saw in big companies with individuals. People get hurt because you would take an amazing strategy and we'd water it down and cut off the edges and watered down, and pretty soon it's like the thing that you call it, but that's not what it is. It's like you've taken a sharp knife and you've now made it like a blunt object. It's ineffective at what you need to do. It’s not adventurous, it's not fun. It's nothing. It's just a blur. So I thought there are people out there who want to change. How do I find out how to help? Same time, I bumped into Patrick. We're both talking about some different things and his passion and ours aligned with, like, "OK, there's leaders out there." They're in their own verticals, whether it's trade, whether it's technology, any number of things. They're in their craft and they've built a decent-sized company, 10 million, 20 million, 30 million dollar-sized company. They're kind of at that point where it's like, “OK, we've put the whole thing on our back and gotten this far”. Maybe their team doesn't have the same level of passion as they do. They're missing that big goal. They've got enough to go on vacations and have a good time, but they're missing out. So we thought, how can we apply the lessons of awesomeness, this raw, unforgettable attitude? I'm just going out there and crush it, and watch me do it. We looked for it. That's the real story. We talked to people, talking to people in the NFL. We talked to people at Stanford. We were trying to put this stuff together and we could not find a program. We were digging into it. It can't just be about a sales process and it can't just be about raw athletics. Who helps me, to be mentally fit, financially fit, physically fit, relationship-wise fit. So we said, "Well, shoot, let's just create it." That led to what we're doing out. 

Ryan Alford [00:24:00] So let's talk about that for the close up here. What's that look like? Where are we headed? What’re the next steps? I know you've got the ideas. You guys have been meeting. You've got maybe some clients but talk about the formulation of this entity.

Dan Waldschmidt [00:24:18] You might call it a club or a membership group. Essentially, it's built around some pursuit of knowledge and then coaching on these behaviors and accountability to each other. We'll go through some topics each month that we all need to work on purpose, a commitment and really examining our own belief system. “Why do we do the things we do?” What are the stories we're telling ourselves? “What's our identity as to that?” My identity gets really screwed up. It can be because people know me, the stage guy or the podcast or author guy. Is that really my identity or is my identity like a dad? Often I'll tell people I'm a runner first. What I think of myself is probably the most the things that I'm most proud of 

Patrick Garner [00:25:11] When we go into that, the identities that you see yourself in and other people see you in when you let that dictate, tells good or bad days of your life. There's the problem. If you have a bad day, does that affect everything else? If you have a bad workday, does that affect you at home? For most people I know you're constantly trying to work on that, that's a yes. To separate that identity in all of the roles that you play with, really at the core, you're the same person. But you better have that belief system to reinforce that.

Ryan Alford [00:25:59]  You guys crack that code. I think we just got how many of our listeners plus me signing up because that is it for me. I have a hard time. We've talked about Silo's earlier, but I have a hard time separating those things. 

Dan Waldschmidt [00:26:14] Well, the things we do are really good. There are times where I'm running and I feel, "I'm gobbling up that guy."  I know I'm going to get that guy head up.

Patrick Garner [00:26:25] That would be me in a golf cart. You would be chasing me in a golf cart. 

Dan Waldschmidt [00:26:53] That's what's important for me to go and do what he does or attempt to do it. It adds that layer. It's like, "OK, my identity is Dan as a runner." “Is that all I'm going to do, limiting myself? Is my belief so strong? That's all I can do? We make these choices in our life. That's the purpose of this group. The eleven hundred that were rolling out.  We're working really hard to make sure that the people who are in it are committed to that change. They're committed to the other people in the group so that we all can grow and take our games and our lives to the next level. It's operating in that "we do have" model. So we want you to be amazing, be awesome, do awesome things. Second only to financial success? Yes, probably. It's impossible. What is it like on January 4th? You're going to magically make a million dollars? That's probably silly to talk about. It doesn't even matter. If we can help someone like you say, "OK, maybe I had a bad workday, but guess what, I'm still awesome." One of the things I even tell our team and groups around the world is, "listen, you don't have to be perfect to be awesome. You look at some of the most successful people, whether it's Elon Musk and what he's doing is awesome, and different people have been awesome, but they weren't perfect." In fact, they are pretty flawed. But that's OK.

Patrick Garner [00:28:17] One thing we do, a lot of people that be able to access, if you want to call it the eleven hundred, the group and then within that group, have people figured out themselves of what else, in addition to the information that we're providing and maybe we do some events, you need to figure out what you want to add to a piece of the pie. You have to figure that out. Dan and I really can't tell you. I think we're going to get a bunch of bad guys in a group. We're going to do a lot of great things. Within that group, certain people are going to reach out for certain things. We want to have a big group and then we want people to figure it out themselves and kind of almost come to us in their own time, in their way and say, “look, I really need to dig in here. How do we do that?” Or "my group, my team needs to be better here. How do we do that?" Then we're going to have a scalable process in which we're going to go through. 

Ryan Alford [00:29:30] I love this quote from your book, Eliminating Excuses is important because the future is important. I don't think that resonated with me. For me, that's the key. Eliminating excuses stops at the door when you start doing these things.

Dan Waldschmidt [00:29:50] No, I try to remind myself of that. So it's easy to write a book. At a certain level, anyone can write a book now, but living by it for me, it's harder. I remind myself, “oh, when I'm angry because my wife called me out on something, I am like, that's an excuse."  The fact that “I didn't train hard enough because I was feeling sick”. These are excuses. If we truly believe that, greatness is a possibility and whatever you want. That's different for each of us. The only thing that's standing between where you are right now and that greatness is usually an excuse.

Ryan Alford [00:30:29] How does everyone listening get involved? How do we find you guys personally? Social? Web? Let's go around, Patrick, how do we ever find you, follow you and your writing? 

Patrick Garner [00:30:42] So everything out there on me is going to be somewhat limited and geared toward what I do. What Dan and I do together will be more accessible through Dan’s Edgy rant. You find Dan, you found Eleven Hundred. We will make it very easy if you find Dan. 

Dan Waldschmidt [00:31:15] I tell people to reach out and connect in some way. We are Dan Waldschmidt on Twitter, go to Dan Waldschmidt.com. We have a bunch of free stuff there and sign up for our newsletter. Here's why. We'll be messaging this out through the newsletter. We're days away from announcing it publicly. We've been working with a select group of business leaders right now who have already wanted to help. We've been helping them with one on one teams. Now we're going to be opening this up for much larger individuals and small teams who want to join in. We're excited about it. 

Ryan Alford [00:32:12] Alright. Well, I really appreciate having you guys and look for more details to come. Podcast listeners, I'll put some links on for Dan stuff and maybe begrudgingly put some stuff for Patrick. Thank you guys so much.