Do you want to start a business? In this series you will learn how to find a need and fill that need from Jack Nadel, a successful business man with over six decades of experience in entrepreneurship.Sign Up to Watch
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-Hey, Thrive nation. It's Paige Taylor, and today we're sitting down Clay Clark and Jack Nadel. Jack is a decorated World War II veteran, and he's also the founder Jack Nadel International, which is one of the top distributors of promotional merchandise in the United States. Today we're talking about finding a need and filling it. Do you want to be an entrepreneur or you are looking for a game changer, but you have no idea where to start? Today, Jack's gonna be talking about finding a need and starting a business to fill that need. So I know that you need to watch this episode. Let's get on into it.
-Jack, I appreciate you letting me talk to you today about this fabulous topic, one that gets me excited. It is find a need and fill it. I want to ask you, though, how are things going here in Santa Barbara? Do you ever get bored with the weather being perfect every day?
-I never get bored with it, and every so often, it really turns out imperfect. So it breaks the cycle. But having perfect weather, waking up in a beautiful home, listening to gorgeous music never hurt. Never bores me.
-OK. All right. Well, the offer continues to be open-- my wife and I-- if you want to come to Tulsa and hang out. The weather's bad about 70% of the time. And it's hot in the summer and it's really cold the winter. It's humid a lot. There's a lot of bugs.
-You're doing a good selling job. I've been there.
-The tourism capital of the world, actually, is what Tulsa is. Well today we're talking about, again, how to find a need and fill it. And I want to start off with this quote from The Millionaire Next Door. It's a book about-- they kind of interview millionaires all around the world. And it says, "Self-employed people make up less than 20% of the workers in America but account for 2/3 of millionaires." It seems like, basically, people know that, but they sort of are afraid of getting in the game. Walk me through what you mean when you say, find a need and fill it. What does that mean-- a big overview there.
-I think it's something that will serve you your entire life. I mean, if I sat down and I-- before I wrote this book, The Evolution of an Entrepreneur, it was, what would I'd like to do. What is there a need out there for? And I felt that the business world was far behind itself, and there were not enough people-- we needed more trained people to conduct the new business. So starting, let's say, with me today-- what is your need, Jack? The only thing I really would like to have is I would like to have some means of passing on what I've learned to future generations. Let them choose what they want. I'm no saying they're all pearls. But let it be like a huge cafeteria, and just pick what you want and leave the rest. So using the television, using Thrive, using a means of getting to these people is a need. It's a need because there's so many people. I hear too many stories about-- I see-- I personally help-- enough people that have not got enough funds coming in on a monthly basis to support their lifestyle. Now, they can drop a peg on the lifestyle, possibly. But they'd much rather stay in the lifestyle they get. So the need was to pass on the education, and maybe get rid of some of the fuzz. Now when I say fuzz, one of the things I learned in combat was we used to carry extra silver foil. And the certain period of time before starting a bombing run-- not worrying about our position-- we would drop the foil out of the plane-- just drop it out of the plane. And the foil was picked up on the radar sets as though it was another plane.
-So we were 100 miles ahead of that, an they're shooting at us, at the silver foil.
-So this is a
Looking for a game changer for your business?
-Well, we have in life so many distractions--
- --that takes us off the course of our own personal joy and happiness. I like the word joy better than anything else. Is that-- so the question-- the answer is, what is it that is missing or what is that you would like to have in your life? Then the finding the need and filling it is you see it all around you. And you know there are certain courses businesses are going to take.
I know I can't predict them. I mean, I heard that-- what was it, Starbucks or Tesla, I forget which-- just ordered a couple of thousand robots. Now, what happens to your discussion about minimum wage? What's the minimum wage for a robot? I think-- and we know the solution, really. The solution is that we should be selling higher priced, better, more enjoyable merchandise of all kinds to do all kinds of jobs.
So as I came out of the service, and knew there were so many shortages because everything was in war production, that we could find things-- items, products, processes-- and provide them the tool market that needed. And the thing is to throw the shackles off your own mind.
-It doesn't have to be the need in your own town. It can be the need 6,000 miles away.
-I want to play the devil's advocate for a second.
-Because I think entrepreneurial. It's something I've learned to do, and I know that you do. But let's just say that somebody's watching this and they're saying, OK, OK. I want to find a need and I want to fill it but I just don't know what industry or what kind of business. Let's say my head is in the sand. It is in the sand.
For whatever reason I've worked at a job for 20 years and the job just disappeared. I mean, maybe I'm watching this and my job just disappeared. How do you begin to look for needs to fill? What advice would you have for someone who's struggling to figure out what needs to fill?
-I would start with what I love. Because that's the very first part of my own methodology, is you've got to pick something that you really enjoy doing.
-The lady who baked the pies is not making a fortune but she now has 20 other women working for her baking pies for the supermarket. And she loves to do it. The lady that helped me move is still doing it and loves to do it.
-So maybe start making a list of things you love to do.
-That I love to do--
- --and then look within that scope and see what I can do that will make it happen.
-I want to see if you endorse this method, too. I've sat down with a lot of people-- I mean, whenever you go to a conference-- and I'm a presenter at a conference people will come up and ask me this question a lot. How do I know what kind of business to get into? I always tell them, too, to make a list of problems that you see around you. Problems that people have.
Because, just as an example, one gentlemen I was helping, he said, I don't know what to do. And I said, OK. Well, just make a list of all the problems you see in just your neighborhood. Well, he comes back and he talks about how there's these high-end homes that were near him and how he pretty much was sure that everyone who owned those homes didn't want to clean their home. And I said, well, there you go. That's something. And he's-- but he's-- would you recommend you find-- make a list of problems that you see around you, too?
-I think it's one method.
-I think it's a-- I think it's an excellent method. I also think that a lot of things hit you in the face every day that if you just keep your eyes open. I suggest very strongly, for example, that you read the daily paper. And particularly, that you read the business section. Because it gives you a clue as to what is happening.
-Like, who was it? Google bought T-Mobile and sold it two or three years later for several billion dollars less.
-Well, Jack, give me an example of the kind of things you could pick up from reading the local business paper or reading the business paper, "Wall Street Journal." What kind of stories can we find in there?
-Well, I just read that a couple years ago, Google bought Motorola, and they sold it a couple of years later at a huge loss. And I don't think it was that Motorola underperformed. It was that Google and their corporate strategy decided they wanted to be in the software business, and they don't want to be in the hardware business. All of this that's going on now between Comcast and Time Warner and DirecTV and all the other purveyors of information shows a trend line that something is going in a direction.
So you want to know what direction that's going in, and what you can do to put something you like and some merchandise or process-- doesn't have to be merchandise. It could be a service. As you said, someone said all those offices need to be cleaned every day. So just doing the service is fine so that it is all around you if you just open your eyes, and it's not a question of how can I find something. It's how can I pick something from this huge list of--
-So the home run now is if I make a list of problems, and I make a list of things I love, if I can find the intersection of what I love to do and what people need, boom.
-Bingo. Now OK. So here we go. Ray Kroc-- this guy, obviously you know, but he was the founder of McDonald's franchise system. The McDonald's brothers previously were making burgers, but he took it over, franchises this thing. He says, if you're not a risk-taker, you should get the hell out of business. Jack, once you determine a business niche or a need, how big of a risk-taker do you actually have to be in order to become a successful entrepreneur? How big of a risk-taker do you have to be?
-I can't quantify that. Different strokes for different folks.
-It depends on the ind-- what's your comfort zone? How do you go about-- one thing you can do if you think the risk is too big is to try to minimize that risk, and one of the ways you can do it is by actually writing a test sample of what you want to do. For example, if you're in a business now that is very needed and very desirable, but it takes heavy duty financing, the question is, is there a business similar or in that vein where you can test? I used to be-- one of the businesses was direct marketing or direct mail, it was called. And we never sent out a huge mailing of anything, until we tested it.
-So you can kind of minimize your risk a little bit.
-Yeah. So if I have a million pieces I want to mail out, I may test with 50,000, and I'll pull up percentages and say, hey, yeah, this works.
-I want to-- just throughout this, a question for you, because I feel like there's people watching here, and I just want you to be just of a truth cannon. Just let it fly here. I'm going to ask you these four different scenarios, because this is what I see a lot. So here's scenario one. One guy, he spending, let's say, $500 or $600 a month on a car payment, and he wants to go into, let's say, the cleaning business.
And he goes, I don't know if I can-- I mean if I spend $600 a month on mailers and they don't work, I don't know if I can handle that kind of rejection. And I might say to the guy, guy, well, you're spending $600 on your car. Maybe you should sell the car, get a crappy car, and do more mailers.
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