Ken & David 2023 Goals

David 0:00
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Intro 0:46
Welcome everyone to the firing the men podcast a show for anyone who wants to be their own boss isn’t sitting in a cubicle every day. And no you were capable of more than join us. This show will help you build a business and grow your passive income streams in just a few short hours per day. And now your host serial entrepreneurs David Schomer and Ken Wilson.

David 1:10
Welcome everyone to the firing the man podcast on today’s episode, Ken and I dive deep into our 2023 goals. For each goal. We will share why we made it how we plan on accomplishing it and keep you updated throughout the year on our progress. Ken, what’s going on man?

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Ken 1:24
David, welcome. So for those joining on video, David and I are both remote today. David’s got a new setup. And in his in his office a stand up basketball got some killer mics. And so yeah, we’re gonna share our goals with everyone today. And yeah, I think it’s super important for everybody to have goals and to strive to get better year over year. I’m curious, David, how long have you been setting goal? Is this something you’ve recently done? Or if you’ve done this for a really long time? Yes. So

David 1:50
my wife and I, when we got married, which was six years ago, every New Year’s Eve, we go out for dinner, and we talk about goals for the next year, three and five years. That is the first time I’ve ever formalized, like actually written it down. However, and we’ll talk about this a little later in the episode, you and I have taken it one step further. And not only are we writing them down, but we’re announcing them publicly to firing the man nation. And that is I think that is an added layer of accountability. And so yeah, let’s just get right into it. So like, why are we doing this, and I just was talking about putting your goals out in the universe, I’d like to share a story in 2020, we did a goals episode on my sheet was fire the man. And when I got to that I decided not to say I didn’t say it out loud. The reason for that was I had a very stable job. And I had not fired man yet. I had a very stable job, I was a little uneasy about if ecommerce was going to work or not. And I felt a little embarrassed that we had a podcast about quitting your job when I had a job. And so I opted not to announce it. Well, I did not fire the man, I did not meet that goal in 2020. Now in 2021, I did I put it out into the universe, lo and behold, I did fire the man. And so I think that there’s something to this, that when you announce it, you know other people are listening that you want to be on top of it. So what do you think?

Ken 3:09
Yeah, absolutely. No, yeah, I definitely agree that when you put something out into the universe, or you know, whether it’s you tell your friend or you tell your partner or whoever, it’s a level of accountability. And if you know, if you’re listening to this, and you’ve never done goals, take a few minutes, write down some goals, think about them, email them to David and I support at Firing the Man, or David and Firing the Man or candidate Firing the Man will will be your accountability partner. But yeah, I think just just writing from one writing them down the step one, and really like make some real and then sharing with someone, you know, sharing them with someone that’s positive that’s going to help you and hold you accountable and check in on the other thing is reviewing them throughout the year, you know, status check, where are you every, every every month, every three months, and keep that progress going. And if you slip and fall, get back up and keep going, you know, and so that’s huge. And I you know that I really appreciate you sharing that story on, you know, on the 2020 goals versus the 2021 goals. It’s it’s a lot of times we yeah, we like undercut ourselves when like I don’t know if I can I don’t know if I can do that or not. I would much rather set a goal and not accomplish it than not set one and do nothing. Like those are your options, right?

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David 4:19
Absolutely. Absolutely. So Ken, let’s get into it. What’s what’s goal number one for 2023?

Ken 4:24
Absolutely. So I’ve got three personal goals and three business goals that I’m going to share today. The first one, the first three are business in the last year. So the first business one is diversifying 30% of total revenue from the portfolio companies off of Amazon US and the reason for this is that Amazon US is a pain in the ass. It’s great when when when you want it to be and it’s horrible on you know, any point in time and so diversifying revenue from your business is just a very smart thing to do. Some of the some of the ways that we’re doing this is we’re going to scale email marketing, so it’s a gap in our bid isn’t a set, if you have a native Amazon FBA business, then you likely don’t do email marketing, because Amazon’s not going to give you the emails of your customers. And so in 2022, we’ve ramped up email marketing for all the portfolio brands. And we’re going to really scale it this year, we’ve got a technology partner that we’re we’ve partnered with. And we’re scaling emails pretty rapidly. And that another one we’re working on is b2b sales. So we’ve taken a step farther. And with the brands where we’re reaching out and ramping up b2b sales programs, outreach, cold calls, emails, texting, we’re dabbling in a bunch of things, to try to try to generate revenue off of Amazon. And the last one is our direct to consumer websites. And so this is email marketing, we’re driving a ton of sales to the to the direct to consumer websites. David, what’s your first goal? Coincidentally,

David 5:45
mine also has to do with diversification off of Amazon. And you know, you had mentioned that, that they’re kind of a pain in the ass. So how are we are going to grow off Amazon revenue, that is going to be Walmart, we launched in Walmart in late 2020, and spent 2021, kind of getting things optimized. And being I think, to me as a platform, it’s still developing. And here’s an example of this PPC, you could only advertise at a parent level. And in oftentimes, if you’re selling something that has variations, that doesn’t work, or it’s not optimal, they are just recently switched over to allowing you to target your child ASINs for child skews, whatever you want to call them in. So I as I see that, that develop, I would like to be along for the growth. And so I would say right now across all three portfolio companies, Walmart represents between five and 8% of total revenue. And I think we could definitely get into the double digits and continue to grow there. It’s it’s now part of our launch strategy. When we’re launching we’re launching on Amazon and on Walmart. So pretty exciting stuff there. The next thing is scaled international marketplaces. And this was one that we started in 2021 made a significant investment in terms of time and energy, just getting this done. And one lesson I will share from that is don’t do three new marketplaces at once. So we went into it, we simultaneously went into the UK, Germany, and Canada, all of them have different taxation rules, all of them have different rules on importing. And if you want to stock all of your products, guess what, now you have three times the inventory demand that you previously had. And so in the in uncertain markets, and so anyway, I am looking for those to mature and really looking to get those dialed in, you know, in Germany with that being a different language, there’s a lot more things that we need to do in terms of translating listings and getting our infographics up to speed and in the correct language. So that’s something that I think is going to help with this diversification. And the last thing is affiliate marketing outreach, we’ll call this b2b. So we have a social media manager at our company. And one thing that we have asked them to do in the upcoming quarter is an outreach program and to influencers. And I think that sometimes when people think of social media that think of it as a sunk cost, but I do think that there are ways to use a self social media manager to drive revenue. And that’s what we’re trying in 2023. And I’m really excited about that. So those are three ways we’re going to diversify revenue.

Ken 8:12
That’s awesome. Yeah, it’s kind of interesting how we both have a one of our number one goals for you know, diversifying off of off of Amazon, which is, I think, crucial, that’s also number two on my list, something that I think is very, very impactful to our entire company, we implemented in Windows, I think it was q3 of 2022, we implemented EOS. And for those listening, that are not familiar with the book, traction. EOS stands for Entrepreneurial Operating System. And it’s essentially boils down to a set of processes and structure on how to run a business and how to how to just make it into just a big ol SOP for your entire company, your entire workforce. And we implemented that. And we’ve seen some really good changes since then. And so we’re really just going to I really wanted to double down on EOS and just continue to refine what we’ve implemented and make it better. One example is scorecards we do monthly scorecards for all of our team members, and it’s just a measure of their performance. And we adjusted it seems like as a small company, you know, we’re able to we’re able to like pivot and like make really quick changes where and large corporation it’s not that quick. So making making changes, keeping our keeping our employees challenged, and also keeping them working on things that are that are relevant to help out the entire company and things they enjoy working on level 10 meetings. So meetings, unfortunately, are just the concept of communicating and running a business. And so we we’ve decreased our meetings and we’ve kind of compressed them and EOS they’re called level 10. This is something that where I’ve, I’ve seen huge benefits from from having these level 10 meetings and just kind of continue to refine those and make and making sure they’re like super helpful for everyone involved in keeping everybody informed on what everybody else is working on. And the last one here so we’ve recently implemented to us and spending, I think four or five months, David, I think just really drilling in on the pulse of how meetings go monthly, quarterly annual updates, planning, just really drill in on that learn and get better.

David 10:13
You know, when we first started this, I hit the traction program. So we started with reading the traction book and implementing this, I was a little nervous that this was going to be a time suck. Boy, is it the actually the opposite. It is saving time, it’s helping out with better communication. I’m a huge fan. I’m sold on on the program. And we will be doing it from from here on out. And so for those of you who haven’t, at the very least read the book and see if it may be a good fit for your company. But yeah, this is not a paid sponsorship. I just I really liked the impact it’s had. And what’s also cool as you talk to someone who’s been running it for three or four years, and they’re like, oh, it continues to get better. It’s like a fine wine.

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Ken 10:50
Yeah, absolutely. It just David, you and I were talking before the show I was chatting with one of my friends from the mastermind has been he’s been using us for five years and seen just uncommitted incremental improvement. So definitely works. So David, number two for

David 11:03
you. Yes. So I would like to help three people successfully fire the man. Now a little bit of background on this goal. Can you and I have had friends that have fired the man, we’ve had listeners of the show fire the man and we’ve had a lot of people talk to us about wanting to fire the man. And it is so exciting to me when this happens when before I fired the man and I would hear about somebody doing it. It was very much aspirational. Like I want to know what they’re experiencing now that I’m on the other side of it. It is the greatest gift you could give someone like I eat I think about it from a parent’s standpoint. I think one of the best things I could give my children is the ability to be self sufficient and have full ownership of their time it is a gift and and certainly something that that can you and I have enjoyed. And so this is something through the podcasts, we would obviously love all of our listeners if that is their goal to fire the man in terms of like personalized coaching. And can you and I have opened up coaching to a very small group of people I mentioned my goal is three people that is because I want to be three for three this year. I want I want whoever starts the program to finish it, and we have a celebratory beer over Firing the Man and so anyway, that’s, that’s that’s big goal for the upcoming year.

Ken 12:16
That’s awesome. Yeah, it’s kind of a selfless goal, but also very rewarding. Like, I enjoy helping people. And I know you do too, David. That’s really cool. And yeah, I can’t think of a better gift than to help someone fire the man. It’s It’s pretty amazing. Okay, number three on my list increase revenues by 20%. You know, David, you and I have been talking about this for the last few months. 2022 was a rocky year for all of ecommerce. So you know, I’m in multiple masterminds, you’re as well. And after talking with lots of people, the majority, like 75 to 90% of E commerce businesses were down in 2022, which is which is an odd year. And so this year, or no turn around, we’ve got a lot of initiatives in place, a lot of programs shuffled some things round. And our goal is to increase revenues by 20%. How we’re going to do that a couple things here launch new products, we’ve got lots of new products in the pipeline, got a new program PLM. We’re going to share with the audience once we’re done with that more exciting things to come there. But we’re launching a lot of new products, we’re going to optimize PPC, we’re in the middle of implementing a new PPC software. And so when we’re done luckily share that share case study. But there’s a lot so if you’re the Boca, if you’re if you’re an Amazon seller or Walmart seller and you you need to have PPC dialed in, it’s just getting more aggressive and more aggressive as more and more sellers come on the platform that advertising is just going crazy. So you definitely need to have your PPC dialed and scaling b2b and direct to consumer sales. And so that kind of ties in with goal one here of diversifying off of Amazon using these other channels to drive sales you know starting a b2b program and really ramping up direct to consumer website sales is just there’s a lot of opportunity right now with with scaling though, so increasing revenues by 20%

David 14:02
Absolutely can one of the things that you said there which dovetails very nicely into my third goal is launching products. So my next goal is to launch 15 products across portfolio companies and can you and I have been going deep on this and we are we have been emailing our customers and asking them what do you want we have been polling our private Facebook groups asking the customers what they want we have taken a very analytical look at sales velocity and BSR and number of reviews and this is something that I’m going to go on a little bit of a tangent here we had a guest on on the podcast Reggie young and he said You are one product launch away from changing your life and that hit me like that that sentence hitting in so I think that is at least from my standpoint, I think we’re getting things dialed in like when we’re launching products packaging is on point inserts are on point in in so just trying to launch not 15 product just 15 products but 15 really good products and so I don’t know you can you add on this. What are your thoughts here? Yeah,

Ken 15:00
Just to piggyback on that, one thing that we’ve, we’ve pivoted on over the last two to three years is you hit on a little bit, David is that we’re actually like communicating with our customers and listening to them on what what products they want and what products they need. And then, and then we’re using Amazon’s tools to go and validate there’s a demand for those tools or for those products. Whereas we used to do the reverse. We used to use all of these tools to look at, you know, BSR, and sales velocity and all that and then go launch products and see if people would buy them. We’re doing it we’re doing it the opposite. Now we’re listening to the people and then we’re just verifying that there is a demand for them that people are actually buying because Walmart’s are Amazon and Walmart, they’re like large search engines that people use to purchase products. And so we’re we’ve kind of like flopped, you know, flipped it over. And so, but it’s exciting, like listening to our customers, and then validating that, yes, there is a demand and then launching those products. And so I’m super excited. We’ve got several in the pipeline. We call them idea buckets. Our idea buckets are full. And so it’s exciting.

David 16:00
Absolutely, absolutely. All right, Ken, so you went through your three, your three professional goals. What about your three personal goals? Yeah,

Ken 16:08
absolutely. So number four, it’s a personal goal. For the listeners that don’t know David and I both trained in jiu jitsu and have for a while. And so my one of my personal goals for this year is to achieve a brown belt in jujitsu, which is yeah, I’m excited for it’s heavy, but I’m excited for it. But so how I’m going to do that I’m going to train three times a week, I’m going to try and not get injured, and I’m going to have fun. So those are those are three three ways that I can achieve a brown belt.

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David 16:31
Awesome. Yeah. Can you mentioned jujitsu? You’ve you’ve been doing it a while I’m, I’m six months in. And this actually is one of my goals is to attend 100 jujitsu training sessions. And like I mentioned, I started six months ago, and I love it. I love it. And I honestly I’d thought about it for about five years listening to Rogen and watching MMA I was like, I should try this. I wrestled in high school. I love it. Not only is it like great exercise, but like it’s an awesome group of guys. It somehow engages your brain in a similar way to like chess, which is weird. Like, I don’t get that from other sporting things. But I love it. That’s one of my my three personal goals is to attend to 100 jujitsu trainings,

Ken 17:10
that’s awesome. And yeah, you you know, like, for me training Jiu Jitsu, like you mentioned, it’s like chess. And it is because you’re, you’re, you’re you have an opponent that you’re training with, and you’re trying to beat. And so you’re trying to figure out what they’re doing. And then you’re gonna, you’re trying to figure out a defense and then attacking loopback. And so it engages your brain as well as your entire body. When I leave, you know, a training session, I’m completely wiped out, like I’m drained. And one thing is, like, one thing I’ve noticed, I’ve got a lot of good friends that I met in jujitsu, and especially someone that’s been training more than six months or so anybody that doesn’t like it, they’re not going to train after six months, it’s something that you have to really enjoy, because it’s grueling, but it’s there’s a lot of like, quality people. And if and if you like to, you know, do something grueling and you enjoy it, you’re likely you’re you have a lot of grit. And so a lot of the people that you meet the trends, you just you have a lot of grit, because they just stay after it for so long. Awesome. Next one on my list. Number five, I’m going to take another 30 day, which I’m labeling as a non work vacation, I’ll take my laptop for emergencies, but no scheduled meetings, anything like that. I did this last year, my family and I traveled Europe for 30 days, I think we did seven countries in four weeks, or eight countries and four weeks. It was a it was an incredible trip as my first travel trip since COVID. And so I had a I had a ton of fun and yeah, it was just good to just have that downtime. And the other thing you know, it exposes gaps in the business there’s any today thing like go to shit, you know, or as well as you know, it kind of empowers the team to handle things on their own and you know, to grow. Having said that I have David as a business partner that also helps out helped tremendously of running all that stuff. And so but yeah, that’s that is another goal of mine.

David 18:48
Absolutely. It goes both ways. You know, I traveled plenty last year in we cover for each other in debt, something that I don’t think people think about when they think of having a business partner. Actually, it wasn’t something that I really even considered that much until we started doing it. And it is nice, don’t feel like you have to be married your business you can go on plug at the end of the day. I think that unwinding outside of work helps you when it’s work time to really dial in. So one of my next personal goals. And this is kind of going along with that theme of travel is to go on to out of state hunts. So I had I think I may have talked about this on previous episodes, but I love to hunting fish that is my thing. And this past year, I went on an elk hunt and a bear hunt a bear hunt up in Canada and an elk hunt out in Wyoming and I had the best time I met a lot of really cool people saw cool parts of North America really that I otherwise wouldn’t have seen. And so anyway, I am wanting to do that again next year. And so I’ve got I’ve got a bear hunt on the books and hope and I draw Wyoming antelope tag but anyway,

Ken 19:50
that’s awesome. Is that a black bear or grizzly bear?

David 19:53
A black bear? A black bear. So yep, it’s up in Manitoba and little I’m going to go off on a tangent but I was at a hunting camp couple years ago and someone had some bear and it was the sweetest meat I’ve ever tasted. And he said, these bears are from this place in Manitoba, where they have blueberries literally everywhere. So much so that the bears fat is purple in solid, like a candy meat. And so anyway, I booked like, after I tasted that meat, I booked a hunt. I went up there last year, and came back empty handed going back, and hopefully I can get a blueberry bear.

Ken 20:23
That’s awesome. Yeah, very cool. All right, so my last one, number six, my third personal one to lose 30 pounds. So over the last several years, I have gained weight and due to COVID due to not working out, eating crappy, taking time off. And so huge goal for me this year is to lose 30 pounds. What I’m doing to do that is I’m training Jiu Jitsu, and I’m not getting injured. And I’ve got a new system of meal prep and planning. There’s a couple places around here that I that make like healthy meal or healthy meals and they haven’t there you can just go by we get them delivered. So I’m doing that and as well as meal planning ahead of time of what if I’m going to go out to eat, what am I going to what am I going to pick and all that. So just spending more time having a having a plan in place versus just oh, I’m hungry, I’m gonna go grab whatever I want to eat, which is what I used to do. And then the last one here is better sleep. And so sleep schedule, I think I think sleep is oftentimes like underrated. Like, you know, I was watching, I was on YouTube the other day I got lost in YouTube land, and I saw this guy pop up and said, What’s the best thing about and he goes to sleep, it’s free. Anybody can do it. It’s free. And I’m like, that’s true. You know. And so having a really good sleep schedule gets you dialed in for a lot of stuff, you’re refreshed. You’re you feel great. You’re Not You don’t need a crutch and so better sleep or train jiu jitsu meal prepping and better sleep. Oh, hold me accountable for that.

David 21:42
Absolutely. You were talking about sleep for anybody that has not fully bought in on this. Go listen to a Matthew Walker podcast. When he was on Joe Rogan. He’s a PhD has spent his whole life studying sleep. And it was it was one of the best podcasts I’ve ever listened to. Also one of the best like it’ll be a huge fan of sleep after listening to it. So anyway, yeah, last one on my list is lift four weeks as a digital nomad working somewhere else than my office. So when I dreamed of being a digital nomad dreamed of Firing the Man, I thought that I would, you know, travel, maybe work out of the back of an RV, and just, you know, never be home. That has not been the case, I have spent actually, most of my time at home, I’ve realized that I am a homebody and I enjoy being at home. However, I have done a couple like working trips. I spent a week down in the Florida Keys, and I work from like 5am to one and then I’d go fishing with my boys in the afternoon. That was great. And I paid for it with credit card points from PPC spent. And so it Life was good that week. And so I want to do more of that. Anyway, that’s four weeks is digital nomad, hold me accountable. Hopefully you don’t see my background is in my office so often.

Ken 22:53
Now. That’s awesome. And yeah, I think that that is really cool to just get away in unclog and flex that muscle of, hey, I don’t have I’m not tied to you know, I have roots here. I can, you know, be mobile and move around. So that’s awesome. I hope everybody really enjoyed the show. And David, I think maybe we do a mid year, mid year goal review. Yeah, absolutely. And share progress with everyone. Yeah. So if you’re listening to this, and you have a list of goals, or you want to share them with us, like said, email, email us support at Firing the Man, send your goals over, if you haven’t written down, write them down. I don’t care if take a picture on your phone, email it to us write them down and send them over. And yeah, David, maybe we’ll maybe we’ll pick one person. And you know, if you’re an entrepreneur, maybe we’ll have you on the show and share your goals too.

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David 23:35
Absolutely. Absolutely. Looking forward to hearing from all of you. One final thing when it can canonize initiatives for this year is to grow our YouTube page one no cost way that you can support this show is to go on YouTube and subscribe to our channel. We’re putting out multiple videos every week. And we’ve been working really hard on them. And it’s just another way to enjoy our content. So thank you, everyone, for tuning in this week. And we’ll see you next week. Before you go. Fun fact for all you Amazon sellers out there. When you start selling in international marketplaces, all of your reviews come with you. At the beginning of this year, Ken and I sat down and talked of ways that we could double our businesses in size in landed on international expansion as our number one initiative this year, we partnered up with Kevin Sanderson from maximizing ecommerce and he has made the process an absolute breeze walking us step by step through the process. If you want to grow your revenue and reach new customers head on over to https://maximizingecommerce.com/fire and connect with Kevin Sanderson today. Now back to the show.

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