From Entrepreneur to Business Coach and Podcaster

IMG_2329A few years ago, I came to a really important crossroads in my life. I had successfully launched a new company, and it was growing rapidly. Things were going really well by all accounts. But at the same time, I was terribly unsettled, and I didn’t know why.

I don’t do well with being unsettled. Something was nagging at me, and I couldn’t quite put my finger on what it was. So I did some really serious soul-searching, and I came to a realization that surprised me. Just having a successful business wasn’t enough. If I wanted to be truly fulfilled, I had to help others realize their own success.

I made the decision, which was a tough one, to shift most of my focus and attention away from the very company I had worked very hard to get off the ground. It was time to explore the things I had neglected and pushed to the back burner for years. I spent more time with my family and my friends. I got into better shape physically. And I did a lot of service and volunteer work, which has always been really important to me. I totally reprioritized my life.

All those things that I had always said were the most important things in my life — friends, family, health, service — became my first priority, and I put the business second. While it was deeply gratifying, it was also scary. As much as I love having a well-rounded life, I also enjoy being able to put food on the table. Taking time away from my business was a big risk.

Then another pivotal thing happened: I realized I wanted to return to business coaching and mentoring.

Earlier in my career, I had done a lot of business mentoring. As my own entrepreneurial projects took root, however, I never seemed to have the time to coach others. Now I had the time, and my passion for helping other entrepreneurs was only growing. So I got back to coaching and mentoring. I rarely charged for it, and even though it took another slice of my time away from my personal and professional efforts, I started to feel so much better.

One day, I was having a conversation with a very trusted friend, and he said “Tom, why don’t you just focus on being a business coach and mentor. You enjoy it so much, and you’re good at it. It’s so obvious to everyone but you that this is what you need to do. Make it your next business.”

I instantly knew he was right. In fairly short order, I partially exited my business. With that much more free time available, I was able to start pouring even more time and energy into building a coaching and mentoring program for startups and small business owners.

It went better than I could have ever expected. A short time later I was given the opportunity to become a Kauffman Foundation Entrepreneur-In-Residence. In a matter of months, I had gone from a full-time entrepreneur to a full-time business coach and mentor.

Coaching has become my business, and I’m still able to feed my family. I spend my days working one-on-one with amazing entrepreneurs and startup businesses. My goal is to help as many entrepreneurs and businesses as possible, all over the world, succeed in their businesses. It’s good work, if you can find it.

So why start a podcast? After a few months of one-on-one coaching, I realized that I needed a better vehicle for delivering the information I had to share. Most business owners and entrepreneurs are too busy to enroll in a formal coaching or mentoring program. But they might have 15 or 20 minutes a day, maybe while driving into work or while waiting for a meeting. And that was all the time I needed to deliver something valuable.

Thus the Success In Business Podcast was born.

The show is here to give you the best daily coaching and advice available, taken directly from my ongoing work as a Kauffman Foundation Entrepreneur-In-Residence. It’s a five-day-per-week, 52-week-per-year, 260-episode-per-year show. It’s a daily shot of business knowledge that you can apply right away to your business.