Escape the 9-5 With the Laundry Genius

Many people drawn to the laundromat industry are searching for an escape from their 9-5 in favor of freedom, flexibility, and financial stability. Brian Riseland is no exception and is well on his way to doing just that. After buying his laundromat using some of his retirement funds using a ROBS, Brian is taking his future into his own hands. And in this interview, he shares his tips, tricks, strategies, and mindsets that have put him on that path to freedom so you can do it too!

In today’s episode, Brian and Jordan discuss:

  • How to escape the 9-5
  • Knowing your numbers and what numbers to know
  • “knowing” vs “doing”
  • Independent laundromats vs franchise laundromats
  • Finding a good location
  • Criteria for a good laundromat location
  • Using ROBS to purchase a laundromat with retirement funds
  • How to be a leader when you don’t know what you’re doing
  • Effective promotions
  • The #1 feedback he gets in his store that makes all the difference
  • Why people go to a laundromat that has higher prices

And a lot more!

Listen To The Podcast Here

Watch The Podcast Here

Photos of Brian's Laundromat

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Episode Transcript

hey what’s up guys it’s jordan with the
laundromat resource podcast this is show
85 and i’m pumped you’re here today
because today we have on the show brian
riseland who is well on his way to
escaping the nine to five through
laundromat ownership and i know a lot of
you guys out there listening to this uh
either have done that or are dreaming of
doing that and brian shares a lot of
really great tips onto how he’s making
that journey there so you’re definitely
not going to want to miss this one we
cover a lot of territory a lot of turf
and uh big thanks to patrick out there
who uh suggested asking uh guests to
send in pictures of their laundry match
just so we can see them so if you’re
interested in seeing brian’s laundromat
a few pictures of it uh head over to the
show notes at learnbyresource.com
show 85 learning resource dot com show
85
and you can check out uh some photos of
his laundromat over there
that uh that link that show notes link
will have the links to everything that
we talk about in this show also and if
you’re on youtube the links to
everything will be down in the
description but the photos of his
laundromat will be uh at the show notes
page learning resource dot com show 85
all right i don’t want to take up too
much time big welcome to all the new
members out there both pro and free
members uh pro members hope you guys are
enjoying uh all those tools the analysis
calculator and all the other perks over
there on the pro member hub
to all of you uh free members out there
welcome to the community make sure
you’re getting a uh joining in on the
community being a part of it get in
there on the forums and interact ask a
question answer a question start
conversations jump in on conversations
over there and uh you know just use that
as a tool for growth
and then make sure you’re also jumping
into the member resources and using
those tools
to help you get your laundromat all
right all right uh let’s jump into it
with brian and then i’ll see you again
on the back end to close this thing out
brian how are you doing thanks for
coming on the show
thanks for having me doing good doing
very good here in the great pacific
northwest oh man is it raining because i
just feel like it’s always raining there
that’s what we tell everybody so as far
as you know it is uh is it now it will
be soon so it’s that time of year yeah
i feel like maybe you guys are keeping
some secrets from us because you want to
keep us out is that the problem is you
california you’ve sent too many people
up here so now that we’re the word of
getting back so uh you know we just try
to keep pulling the wall over people’s
eyes for a little while
yeah you know you know what don’t feel
special though we send people everywhere
because
it’s kind of a nightmare to live around
here sometimes
uh but uh yeah awesome well it’s like 80
degrees here today and i’m kind of
sweating a little bit and i was stuck in
traffic on the freeway i got caught in
one of those uh
you know the traffic breaks where the
chp guy goes
you know the police off highway patrol
yeah so it’s been an interesting day
already over here
well hey uh i am super excited to have
you on the podcast can’t wait to hear uh
your journey your experience in this
industry
uh so why don’t you start off by telling
us a little bit about who you are and
then let’s go into how you got into this
industry
yeah um so i i i’m born and bred pacific
northwest guy uh lived up in the seattle
area my whole entire life
after college i found my way into a job
at microsoft in an inbound
call center like way way way way way
back when there was floppy disks and
things like that
but i finagled my way around that
company for about 25 years um always on
the on the sales and marketing side
and then
kind of right before covid um it was
time to leave
and i went on a little journey of
figuring out what was next for me
and
a lot of things just kind of where i was
in my life i’m wanting to have more
control over the link between
my work in the outcomes which you know
there can be some distance in that in a
large company and so i decided that
entrepreneurship was the route for me
and i looked at a handful of things um
said ended up through
one of the outplacement services being
connected with a guy kind of an
entrepreneur coach
who’s more focused on the franchise side
looked at a number of franchises in
different industries
um
ultimately decided that one
that route wasn’t right for me but
through all that and through a podcast a
real estate podcast i’d heard probably
like a year earlier like it’s like oh
laundromats are a good business so i
really proved it out to myself that it
was a good business and i decided
that was the route that i was gonna go
down so i went down that route and i’m
what about six six months in maybe seven
now um since opening my first store
holy cow all right i mean there’s a lot
in there that i want to ask you about
i’m like wait stop wait stop stop uh
okay so are you working at your job now
or did you go full bore into
the laundromat thing um so it’s like 50
50 right now um i do consulting uh for
right now for this cool insole company
that i work with that does 3d printable
insults based on pictures you take your
feet with your phone so that’s um that
takes about half my time and then the
laundromat takes about another half my
time um hopefully like with the goal is
to keep getting better at this stuff
where the laundromat is down to probably
about a quarter of that time um just a
lot of it not even so i can free up more
time for the other work but just so i
need to free up time for um like
expanding like i want to i want to grow
this thing and right now and i don’t
think it’s a bad decision but right now
you know none of my thought process is
going on to store number two it’s like
how do we how do we grow and make the
most out of store number one but i gotta
i gotta advance that past that point
someday because i mean you know with
what you hear from folks about machines
getting delivered and anything like if i
put that on my radar within the next two
years right like with lease negotiations
construction machines like all of a
sudden that that deadline seems a little
bit closer so uh yeah that’s what’s on
my mind where i’m spending my time right
now
yeah well and i think it’s smart to
uh
figure out the formula for one store
before you move on to two something that
i did not do
i just went straight to two so you know
just kept learning lessons along the way
uh but but seriously i mean i think
there’s a lot of merit to that because i
think i i’ve talked with a lot of people
who are anxious to get that second one
that third one you know to start scaling
but i
i kind of like the model of
you know buy buy the one
figure out how everything works
and and take your time figuring it out
make sure you have it nailed down
because if you do it that way
then you can just knock them down like
dominoes because you already have your
system you already have your processes
you already have your business model and
you just implement you know from there
so you’re not figuring out as you go
which is another way to do it i guess
but i really like that model
a lot better than my
model that i did
that i took
well fortunately i think my pragmatic
nature led me down that route and uh
kind of you know
i have no regrets about not being
farther down the path right now because
it seems like every month brings some
some new experience that you you know
you didn’t expect i shouldn’t say didn’t
expect it’s funny the stuff like from
listening to your podcast being on the
on the message boards and things like
that it’s
anytime like a unique situation comes up
it has always been for me i’m like yeah
it wasn’t a matter of if it was a matter
of when because i don’t think anything
has been something that i haven’t read
that someone else has already
experienced so it’s just like okay
here it is now i get to deal with it how
are we gonna how are we gonna go forward
yeah that’s it and i mean it and it pays
off to have that mindset too the not the
if the win and that way you know you
just you’re prepped for it mentally
uh when it when it comes so
uh okay so i mean your your
your goal or one of your goals uh
in in getting into laundromats was to
kind of escape the nine to five is that
is that true definitely like you know
i’m 52 years old um you know this is the
second career but this is the type of
thing that if i set it up right um it
will run me run me through retirement
right and that’s kind of like when you
talk about setting up process and stuff
like that’s from the start like i don’t
want to design this around me for the
long term i want to design it to be an
asset for the family um and so yeah it’s
um it is definitely the more i can get
away the nine to five i mean yeah like
you know i guess it’s weird to say right
like my my life right now is kind of
nine to nine
every day or 7 30 whatever time of the
week but i don’t regret it because i
more often than not spend making the
decisions about what i’m doing at each
part of the day
and when and not you know don’t have to
feel guilty that there’s a conference
call or the poll from another meeting or
i could be just doing more if i only
spent more time on this thing because
um like i’m directing my attention to
the priorities in my life so it’s fun
yeah yeah i i always well every now and
then i see the meme floating around
that’s like you know entrepreneurship is
trading
you know the 9 to 5 40 hour work week
for the
100 hour work week to work for yourself
you know and i mean i think there’s
something to that but i love kind of
that perspective of okay you’re focusing
on the things that are going to be
moving you forward and you’re going to
you know you’re focusing on the things
that are you know creating an asset for
you you know when you have a job
you’re not creating assets you’re you
know you’re trading your time for money
which again there’s nothing wrong with
that
however you know building assets
creating assets buying assets
last those last you know especially if
you set them up right so yeah like that
interesting different kind of
satisfaction um from doing what i did
for 25 years that i enjoyed and had a
great run but like i said it’s just
having more control over where my time
and attention goes and a more direct
link to the outcomes is a better place
for me to be right now
yeah
well i mean i love what you’re doing
because i you know i talk to people all
the time every single week i’m talking
to people who
their goal is to escape
the nine to five
uh so as somebody who
i would say is
fifty percent escaped the nine to five
and merged into the nine to nine
uh
what i mean what advice do you have for
you because that’s kind of a scary step
right i mean if you
are gonna merge into like even even
going 50 50 with your you know
consulting and and business owners
that’s still a scary step
uh do you have any advice for people who
are wanting to escape the nine to five
um
for me it’s like as i mentioned i’m
pragmatic it’s also like know your
numbers
right um know what it’s going to take
and you know in my case i have an
awesome spouse who is still
employed full-time in technology and you
know the way we’ve planned out kind of
the next five or so years of our lives
um
you know
if my thing needs to be paying off kind
of when she’s ready to to ramp down
but um you know i know i know what the
monthly nut is that i need to contribute
to the household right now and i make
sure that happens it’s like i guess you
know no no year expenses
right i mean and it’s weird like but
you’ll you’ll find out over the course
of this conversation like i’m a numbers
guy i love rows and columns i will do
everything in excel if at all possible
on that side of the equations but once i
knew what it would take
from the numbers then it was easier to
cut the chord
and also figure out um
you know where i can find you know that
other 20 hours a week in doing that
stuff so
i don’t know so great spouse totally
supportive looking at this in the long
term and um
i knew the numbers and then it’s just
like you know you just gotta go
do
at some point um and i think we’re all
fortunate
right now in the way the labor market is
it’s probably hard to make the
comparison with the laundromat because
the capital that we invest up front kind
of makes it hard hard to go back
but it’s just like
the jobs are going to be there if you
figure out that that is the right place
for you
to be so i think it’s it’s probably a
less risky proposition even than it was
um 18 18 months ago or so because it’s
just you know people are getting more
empowered over
over their work where they do it how
they do it all that kind of stuff and i
think that just plays in your favor if
you realize you know you made the wrong
call you know figure out how to exit and
go back to that if that’s better for you
yeah
yeah i mean that’s i mean i think that’s
really good advice you know in terms of
knowing the numbers understand
i’m cracking up that you’re you’re all
about the spreadsheets maybe we should
work together or something and we could
tag team it somehow but uh you know the
you know but it’s true like the the
numbers will
help you
make decisions right like i talked i had
a whole episode about how using data
helps you make good business decisions
right and
this it’s true when you’re buying it’s
true after you have bought and it’s true
when you’re scaling you know the numbers
will help you
decide if it’s the right move for you
now sometimes
it’s not a crystal clear picture
and you got to take that leap that’s
where you start you know you you go and
do right like you said
but
you know
decisions made based on numbers
uh as long as they are realistic and
accurate numbers uh
are generally better
you know
for me when i bought my first laundromat
i
like
thought i was making my decision based
on numbers however the numbers were just
unrealistic yeah it doesn’t help you
uh
yeah cool okay so you have uh you know
started this journey of escaping the
nine to five
and uh what
you said you owned for about six months
now what
talk to us about
this journey so you listen to a podcast
that said hey you know check out
laundromat so a year later you checked
out laundromats what was it about
laundromats
that
made you enjoy or like say okay i’m
gonna go down this path a little bit as
opposed to like the franchises that you
looked into
um yeah it’s funny because i did i
started down
the reason why this whole laundromat
thing came to the front of my head
because after i discarded a few of the
franchise
options the guy um the coach you know he
makes part of his money um selling
franchises essentially he brought up
laundromats
and i was like that could spread right
back up to the front i was like i’d even
forgotten about it
um
and it really is just you know when
when you find the right combination of
you know your location and things like
that right they’re incredible
incredible businesses and then if you’re
just going to start looking at you know
the cash on cash and things like that
you’re like ah not necessarily even a
bad place to put my money
so
i just decided that i could i could make
a go of it and um you know poked around
the area and didn’t see anything like i
had heard people talking about on on the
podcast and stuff like that with a
a great customer experience so like i
just you know it just
felt like the right place to go and so
then i just decided
i’m gonna do it
so how long ago was that when you
decided
all right this is this is the path i’m
going
shoot so
actually it might almost be about almost
two years to the day
yeah it was about two years today
because i’m probably about this time
um
doing you know like the discovery day
um with the franchise company and kind
of really doing my diligence on on them
and then
yeah in a by mid-march i decided that
like i was going to go forward on my own
and
took a little bit to
um
you know i partnered and ended up
partying with a really great distributor
and kind of given their workload um
you know there was i don’t wanna see
other people ahead of me in line they’ve
said other stuff
and we lucked out like once we started
looking
at properties
we found like where i’m at now is the
one we found on day one
um
and but it took forever it took
four
or five months to negotiate the lease
and it wasn’t for lack of trying on our
part i i still am baffled by
like this landlord who had an old empty
payless shoe store that like they
weren’t replying they would take two
weeks to reply on a simple thing i’m
like i want to come pay rent and and get
in your place but
you know we got there so that you know a
guy i remember signed the lease on on
halloween
um started permitting in december
thought that we thought it would be a
few weeks
but ran into i think they told us like
14 weeks
on the permit side
it’s like oh man really it just kind of
turned out there was just um you know
because of covet they laid off some
people in the permitting department
and there was also a code change that
everybody who submitted by the end of
would have been 2020 got to build to the
old code so we had you know a longer
line with fewer people processing it
but um you know once got out of permit
purgatory um like we built
in like 90 to 100 days like i i feel
still so so fortunate that i’m probably
the only construction project where
every subcontractor showed up like on
time or finished like when they said
they would do because
um yeah i was just you know i i i
figured i’d have my whole summer to
continue goofing around but by uh you
know july 26 of 2021 our doors were open
and um so yeah
uh all right so i mean you can’t just
tease or something like that what is
your secret because that is like i just
know so many owners who are building
right now who are pulling their hair out
trying to get contractors to
you know go on time are you cracking a
whip or did you just get lucky well i
mean no so like i partnered with uh
cesco um they’re a distributor for
laundry lux up here in the seattle area
and you know rich boyd who
retired like literally right after
uh we opened up i mean he he that’s what
he does he built laundromats forever
he’s got his team of people that you
know that do the core stuff and they
know how to work with him and he knows
how to work with them and we’ve filled
in around the edges on some other trades
locally and you know i
i you know so it’s definitely like the
skill of rich and his team in in
managing the process but i think there
is just a fair amount of luck right um
or just or he built the best schedule
with the most buffer at the right time
but you know very rarely were we having
a discussion that you know someone that
didn’t show up or they’re not showing up
on a day was going to impact them being
done by the time they said so
um like i give i literally give all
credit to rich and his team for uh for
pulling that off
yeah once again another just you know
kudos to working with a good distributor
if you find a good distributor
you know hold on to them because they’re
like gold when you find them and uh yeah
so awesome
uh okay so
let’s back it up a little bit so you
built your laundromat right this is not
a
you didn’t buy an existing one
so how i mean you talked about looking
for locations and stuff how did you guys
find a good location
uh
it was a great uh real estate broker um
and we gave some really tight criteria
to them i think that helped um like i
had the criteria a little bit like what
are you looking for for me it was i was
only gonna go about 20 minutes no more
than 20 minutes from my house
for the first one
um and also like you know you guys all
heard the craziness going on in seattle
about that time so i had a big no zone
of like i don’t want to do anything in
the city of seattle um just because of
how crazy the government
um was is operating there so um like you
know that took it really narrows down
because like everything within 10
minutes
was there so we went up and we went uh
north of seattle and
you know we wanted uh like a 4 000
square foot store with great parking and
they showed us a few and
you know
this was the one
and um one of two but this was really
really the one
and kind of the the great one was after
that um it passed the utilities test
like really really quick on having it
had all the electrical that we needed
definitely had to have the um the gas
and this the water upgraded but
we were able to negotiate that into the
into the lease so they paid for for
those types of things but um you know
and that’s kind of what took that that
four or so months to negotiate the lease
was to
to get comfortable right because you
know they’ve never rented to a
laundromat before and we were asking
them to make significant improvements so
it you know just took some time for them
to
understand that and investigate and get
their people out there and and you know
make sure it’s like yeah we want to sign
at least this long with with these
people
but um yeah it was just you know
during the lease i i mean
so there was the finding and then there
was me being impatient um you know i
must have driven these two strips of
road
um
just like every couple weeks just to see
if anything new
had had popped up um that was kind of in
that you know 4 000 square foot range
and uh there wasn’t it was kind of
surprising given the way the economy was
and stuff at the time
but um kind of finally it clicked one
day as i looked at these buildings and i
realized what was in all of them and it
was marijuana shops
so they’re they’re very you know a
burgeoning business out there and uh
they snapped them up first so um you
know wasn’t for lack of trying but never
never found anything that was really
you know that that would pass rich’s
muster i probably had a cue i tried to
push on him but now like now after
having it open
some of the stuff he said i was just
like i i will have a hard time like
find short number two not trying not to
find the same perfect type of situation
because i don’t know that they’re
they’re out there yeah
yeah
yeah okay so you know having having a
good location and the right sizes
obviously and having the utilities that
you need you know that with that lease
negotiation you know
i get like a landlord you know i mean
you’re kind of jumping into a marriage
with somebody who wants to sign a
long-term lease and
you know having to make improvements to
the business were there other
uh sticking factors on that lease
negotiation or was that
kind of what they were oh that was it
you know i think the the probably the
last thing that we we stuck on was um
kind of the clauses that the the
financing company wants in there um
and
you know like that was literally again
like why you partner with people with
experience on this stuff like they knew
that would come they knew how to explain
it to them and you know they also you
know
we kind of looked in when we looked at
the terms up front
like we knew what we what we could give
on and what we couldn’t so like that was
one of those things that we went for
trade-offs
in other areas when they needed
something from us but yeah
um
it was just
just a kind of a negotiation yeah was
there anything in particular that kind
of brought them around
like okay you know we’re we’re feeling
comfortable with you guys or was it just
kind of that whole process of feeling
each other out building some trust
negotiating
yeah i think it was more of the latter
than any any specific any specific
moment
still not sure if we weren’t negotiating
against someone else but uh
you know they they never brought him up
but that could have been why why it took
so long but it was just
you know i said it is it is a it is a
marriage a long-term agreement and
you know we we wanted to make
significant changes to their space some
of which we’re asking them to pay for so
they had to get comfortable with that
yeah yeah and if they have an option of
like putting in a laundromat that’s
going to require larger water lines more
electrical doing some plumbing in the
concrete you know and and some of this
build out or they can throw in a
you know a marijuana shop that’s really
not going to require a whole lot of
disturbance
yeah i can see why you know a
a landlord
might have second thoughts about that so
uh yeah but all right so you found your
location
and you’re working with rich uh up there
who’s helping kind of coordinate
everything
uh the you know by the way i’m sure you
know this but the you know the permit
purgatory thing i mean that’s pretty
universal across the country still
uh even right now and i just did a
webinar with uh
uh mark stern from eastern funding and a
couple of just all-stars in the industry
who are building right now and
everybody’s kind of saying the same
thing from all over
you know the country you know it’s just
it’s tough right now because you know
like offices are still close government
offices are still closed down or they’re
understaffed and stuff’s backed up and
everything’s just moving slower
so that’s pretty common to have that um
and luckily for you you didn’t have the
other common uh difficulty which is
construction delays i’m sure you
probably ran into some inflated costs oh
yeah yeah yeah yeah what was that like
um it was
it was a little i mean
you you hear that you hear the context
going on around you
and you kind of deal with them
sequentially throughout
the process then all of a sudden you get
to a point you’re like well we’ll wait
like we had the buffer and it’s gone and
i need to
come above what and you know it’s just
like
and you’re like you look you’re like
okay here’s where here’s where yeah okay
i mean it was just you know materials
but you know even
the trades like they were they there was
no lack of business for them in the
seattle area
and um
yeah it was just so it was um
it was a it was a
it was
a pill to swallow
um
but
the bigger picture was like the
investments still
still panned out right it was the right
money to spend
um
oh you know so you know i just i told
you i used the the rollover for business
startup program to
to fund it from the 401k so
tapped into that a little bit more and
we did it yeah it was kind of it’s kind
of a reality i guess
there was
there was nothing i could do either way
about it so just kind of had to take it
for what it was and figure out a
solution and we moved forward
yeah yeah and i mean that is a huge uh
huge issue going on for people building
right now uh with you know just i mean
that’s a that’s a spreadsheet buster
right like when those costs start going
up and your spreadsheet numbers start
looking
you know looking wonky and those you
know returns are going down it can be a
little bit
scary uh as you’re especially in the
middle of a project
uh but you know the invest again the the
numbers help you decide what to do right
if the investment still pans out you
keep going
um okay so you mentioned you brought up
robs which is the rollover business
startup can we chat about that for a
second i get a lot of questions about
what that is and how that works and you
know maybe you can shed a little bit of
light on that not nobody’s not claiming
you’re an expert and you know if you’re
thinking about using this
go you know talk to
the proper people an accountant or
somebody who’s a facilitator of the robs
uh so this isn’t advice but just out of
curiosity your experience what was
you know do you have any insight on that
for us yeah i mean i i was fortunate um
i got hooked up with a company called
gaiden financial that like this is this
is what they do
um
and
you know it was
um fairly painless i mean ultimately
what you end up doing is you set up a
401k plan that is your own 401k plan
um
and then you
move money from your
in my case a 401k or
what is it ira
into that plan and the the investment of
that plan is the business
um it does require you to be
i can never remember for some s
corporate corp i always say the wrong
one but you do have to go up with a more
significant corporate structure
on that side but you know is you know
takes a bit of capital to do this thing
and it was a
capital that i had that i could leverage
that i thought i could get a good
return on and reduce the amount that we
had to finance but kind of the thing
that that i’m looking at it goes back or
one of the additional benefits
like i said you asked when he goes like
i knew my numbers like i know what we
need to make to make the household run
and i’m hopeful that
most of the growth in the business
i don’t have to tap into it with a large
salary or things like that where i can
just grow the business and then that
will be paying dividends into my 401k
which will be results in less of a tax
it
for us in the long term so um you know
that was kind of that that you know two
benefits it’s like it’s capital
but a good return and maybe a more tax
efficient
way of
taking advantage of the growth of the
business that i expected
yeah and so you know just for anybody
who’s not familiar it’s
you know it’s
utilizing your retirement funds up you
can’t utilize
uh
you have to utilize certain retirement
funds um in order to you know fund a
startup and so you know if that’s
something that you’re interested in
maybe you have you know retirement funds
that you’d like to use you know the robs
is a good one you know to look into
because uh you know a lot of people have
gone that route um for you know using
their retirement funds in that way and
it’s allowed them to get into business
uh with capital that you know is is
already sitting there ready to ready to
be leveraged ready to be put to work
um so definitely check that out uh okay
so
get back to your deal yep you uh okay
you’ve found a location
you have gone through permit purgatory
uh rich has helped you kind of
coordinate your
you know the construction and machine
installation i mean did you hit uh big
machine delays or was it okay because
you were taking getting delays anyways
um
so i think i was probably
i want to see the last of the on times
right
because
because of the machines because the
permitting took longer than
expected the machines kind of arrived
on time
or um rich had
leveraged his great relationship with
honor decks to make sure that my
machines didn’t go elsewhere well while
we were waiting so um yeah everything
kind of came together at the right time
man look at you you’re just lining up
the good luck here aside from the permit
stuff man i mean i love it
rich way to go if you’re listening to
this kudos to you uh maybe you should
come back out of retirement help some
more people out uh okay so uh so you
didn’t hit really any delays you said
like 90 to 100 days or so and you were
you’re ready to fling open the doors
yep yeah i mean it was it was crazy it
was like i said right up to july 26 and
and and open up the doors and spent the
rest kind of most of the rest of my
summer
um inside that building
so july 25th
day before were you still working your
regular nine to five or had you already
uh made your head
yeah i was kind of long past that that
was you know you lose track um
but i would be but i was still so i
shouldn’t say that like leading up to
that i totally i like i have one
consulting gig right now i actually was
carrying two um leading up to that
and kind of probably about a month and a
half
um or so before we knew the date that’s
when i ramped down my other
engagement to be able to to you know
say
not say focus more time it was just like
i guess focus more time during the
afternoon instead of at night
getting the business uh set up and
running because
you know my skill is on kind of the
sales and marketing on operation side of
the house there was literally
limited
to no value i i could provide on the
construction side so um you know i you
know there’s only so many times you can
tweak your website or you know manage
your google my business profile or you
know explore what technology you’re
going to use so i just you know kind of
tried to keep money
bringing into the house until i had to
cut it off
yeah okay so uh all right so
that was july 25th july 26th
the doors
are open keep i mean can you just talk
to us a little bit about what how are
you feeling that day i mean a lot it’s
it’s been like
what like 18 months or so leading up to
this point from when you had the idea to
opening the door so what was that like
that day when you opened the doors
i was it was fun right it was a kind of
the culmination of the journey and now
it was really like
proving that the ideas you have and you
know what you’ve learned that that
people want to do it probably was just
most nervous on
like
how do you get the team
that you’re building like it’s just like
how do you also be a leader as you’ve
really never done these things before
and you’re doing them alongside them to
figure out how you want to do those
things so yeah
that was probably the most the most
nerve-wracking side of the equation was
just like okay
um
you know like i said
i took lots of notes i wrote down lots
of things and tried to set things up but
you know you don’t you can go to all the
classes too but until you have to you
know clean out a soap compartment that’s
full of fabric softener and do that
stuff like you don’t know exactly how
you want to do it um but you just do it
and you just make sure that your team
knows that that you’re learning and
mistakes are going to be made because
there’s like there’s no you know
there’s really no mistakes that we could
make at that point with like brand new
machines and things like that that were
going to be permanently
harmful right
but we could make mistakes and we could
learn and you know you know they could
probably tell you about
all the the frustrating emails or long
texts i would say and we too we’re going
to change the way we do this to that and
week 3 we’re going to go back to doing
it this way and you know all that stuff
but
it was just you know for me it was just
part of the process and you know just
kind of that whole growth mindset and
wanting to learn it was it was fine
because i expected it and i think
probably the you know kind of out of all
that blah blah blah i just said was
making sure that as a leader i made sure
everybody else
could be as comfortable as they could be
in that environment of constant change
and tweaking
yeah it sounds like we need a course on
how to be a leader when you don’t know
what you’re doing
because i think a lot of people you know
in any business
excuse me when you when you first get
into business like
you don’t know
what you don’t know until
you know
you know it’s like like you said like
even just the little things like what do
you do when the
somebody puts powdered soap in the in
the fabric softener thing and it clogs
it up and how do you clean that out and
you know
all these little things and bigger
things you know too
uh so yeah that’s funny um okay and so i
mean did you guys do like a grand
opening or did you just
fling open the doors and say we’re here
i’ll open the doors yeah always i am
advantage i’m on a i’m a standalone
building on a major arterial like in the
part of the parking lot that’s nearest
the street
um
you know we would even find out during
the process people would
see it we put up the signs early they
would message us it’s like when you come
in like all this stuff so
um
you know we purposely like said we were
we were learning like i was scared to
death of bringing in too many people to
do
to do stuff uh so we just you know
figured it would be you know oh we’ll go
for like six weeks and and once we have
it you know down then then we’ll do a
grand opening celebration but then by
that point it seemed kind of superfluous
to do this other thing that was
supposedly the opening so
we just kind of just just kept on going
and
people you know kept coming in so it’s
been it’s been good we’ve been very very
well received by the community i’m so
like so fortunate
um
of of that reception
yeah that’s awesome i mean that’s a
testament again to that location that
you picked what’s uh out of curiosity
what’s the competition like around here
are there laundromats nearby or
what does that look like
yeah we have um like two that are in
like about a mile one mile north one
mile
south
um
like the the one about a mile north is
is tiny probably
probably bordering on zombie mat
mine is the laundromat next to the
hooker motel
um
okay
pause for a second because it just broke
up for a second and it was i could see
you moving but i couldn’t hear anything
and then it came back in right when you
said laundromat
yeah that was the customer’s
descriptions okay
okay
yeah that was really funny
uh okay go ahead so that one you know
your laundromat a competitor
there’s no hotels next to our laundromat
just a grocery store and a couple other
things so
you know so that one i don’t i don’t
worry i don’t think about that one too
much
because
we don’t compete on price so that’s you
know if you’re price sensitive you’re
you might choose there the one about a
mile south for me um a little older but
definitely um
you know um
a better quality laundromat um
but you know like i said we just i
thought there was a spot for this with a
better customer experience and um
you know i said people have we’ve been
like just
super super fortunate at the at the
reception that we’ve gotten
now did you guys have like uh
did you guys have like a ramp up in
terms of like your revenue and income or
were you guys like profitable
like from the get-go how did that look
because i think that’s a big fear that a
lot of people have right like i’m gonna
open the doors and
you know am i gonna be profitable and
how long is it gonna take me to be
profitable
more profitable right at the start um
but you know
definitely i you know we’re in that
territory now we we grew so we grew in
august we grew in september
started to see the growth rate flatten
um in october but that’s because like
you know when you’re looking at
percentages off that no base like it’s
just that the curve is steeper on that
one um and kind of as we hit november um
i got addicted to the curve going up and
to the right so um
in coordination with kind of doing a
little price tweak uh we
uh we did a double your dollars
promotion in november
um
definitely kept the top line going
um and then frankly in december we saw a
drop right and part of that is you know
we’ve claimed some of the revenue
beforehand in november
but um you know it just
you know you i think people were
spending their money elsewhere um during
christmas time kind of you know you and
and then also we had a few days we lost
to snow
in late december and that stuff but um
so that was like that was sad um you
know you kind of knew why but he was
like oh my it went down right but but
we’ve we’ve bounced back coming into the
new year so um like i
kind of i set some some growth targets
that were probably three or four months
out and we started hitting them in
february and i don’t know why like i’ve
done some marketing and things like that
but it
it doesn’t explain like i need to go do
a route of like the four or five
laundromats in the five mile area and
just make sure that one of them
didn’t close or or something because um
yeah we just said a nice little blip
here that i that i don’t they think is
explained by the marketing that we put
in the market kind of in the
kind of going back to december january
10th right
yeah wow i mean it’s better than the
other way where your income goes down
and you don’t know why but i mean it’s
definitely worth you know digging in and
finding that why because you know you
want to do more of whatever happened now
if it’s somebody who closed you know
well that’s something different but you
know if it’s something that you’re doing
or words getting around or whatever the
case is you want to
fan that flame right
yeah yeah it’s like i just kind of
expected i i would
keep everybody that came in you know the
new customers during the and i did it
for anybody i didn’t double your dollars
because you were new it’s just like hey
anybody come in one week
will double whatever you put
on on the card and um like i just
figured that would keep things going up
because you know i look at kind of well
on the revenue side two things there’s
there’s the card load for me and that’s
my my top line but you know there’s
um really what matt what
i’ve monitored is machine revenue so how
much of that stuff is getting claimed
on there and um you know i said that
it’s just like the machine revenue
slowed down too it’s like oh no
did i did i mess up like i was probably
most concerned about like how many free
washes was i given away to people that
were were never gonna come back and did
that happen and all that stuff and it
was false so kind of gritted my teeth
going through mid-january and then you
know kind of the patterns started to to
reverse back to where we saw them before
so i was i’m feeling a little better
yeah awesome uh i mean you mentioned
marketing aside from the double your
doll well first of all i mean i hear
great things about the double your
dollar and that’s something that you can
do when you have your card store right
and it’s
you can’t really do that when you’re a
coin store so uh you know there’s a plus
side for the car store but uh i mean how
did you promote that double your dollar
promotion
um mainly and well so we did we did
signage in the store
um
we when we put it up on our social media
but we don’t like we don’t have enough
followers to say
you know like it was that um we also had
started our engagement with spinner at
about that time so they they took out
our um
you know all the all the cards um out of
laundry works at least were registered
and
we took that registration information
and started marketing to those people
um
but you know it wasn’t it was
probably mostly like word word of mouth
um i think might have been it like they
said we tried a few things just
it just wasn’t clear but you know we
definitely definitely pulled in you know
new customers that week and
um
you know looking at now i still see
about a third of them like are who have
been in the store within the past you
know month
on that stuff and you know so it’s it’s
you know it kind of
you know i was
it was you know i was probably like
looking at it more as a new customer
acquisition
type of tactic that just built up some
goodwill with everybody
that was there but kind of as i’ve
watched over time and kind of tried to
do the best i can to extract information
out of wanderworks to see how much of
that balance of free washes was getting
sold off and stuff like that and what
was i still on the hook for the takeaway
for me
out of all that was i you know i was
hoping to acquire new customers
um and i did and you know like but i
also saw a bunch of people that only
came in that week and didn’t come back
so over time i’m really evaluating that
more in the light of my return customer
growth which is up like 50
since since october and um
that makes me that makes me happy
because i got to do less to fill the top
of the funnel that’s right and i think
you know focusing on that churn rate and
you know just in case you’re not
familiar with churn rate that’s like how
long you’re gonna you know keep those
customers and you can really track this
when you have a card system it’s hard to
do with the coin system but with the
card system you can track that churn
rate and you know basically that’s how
long are your customers going to be your
customers you know on average how many
are you going to turn over
you know every month and uh you know
obviously the lower the churn rate the
better because it’s cheaper
to keep your customers than it is to
gain new customers right so really
focusing on
keeping your customers is
crucial and it’s not the like sexy thing
to do it’s not the exciting thing to do
but it is uh man it it’s super valuable
to
you know give your current customers an
experience at your laundromat that’s
going to keep them coming back keep that
habit
uh and that rhythm of them coming to do
their laundry with you going because you
know it it’s more valuable even
sometimes than adding new customers
and you know it’s funny like return or
new right people want the same thing
and
it seemed like motherhood and apple pie
like it seemed like obvious when i was
talking to rich about the design of the
store and stuff like that you know
you can do all these things but you know
go look at my google reviews on the
store the number one thing people talk
about is it is clean
right it is clean and then somebody was
in last week she said i can’t believe
that this place is as clean as it was
when i came here the first week that you
guys open
right is that customer experience it’s
kind of like
we you know we can’t just survive on
kind of the wow
that you know people come in the first
time or they’re just like oh wow like i
didn’t expect a laundromat to be like
this as they dump off a bucket of
quarters for us to change into bills so
they can use them in the card
but you know that like that’s not
durable right if that’s all the
experience you know and they come back
the next time and it’s it’s not the same
right that’s not that’s not it like we
every day if you if you ask my people
like the number one thing that they’re
doing is they’re they’re cleaning right
that would probably be a better title if
they really want it it’s just cleaning
and engaging with customers um like just
go read your reviews right that they’ll
tell you what matters and it’s like so
we just
continue
trying to stay really really clean
yeah well and that’s and that’s it man
that’s taking care of the basics i think
is kind of the key to this business
right and just
do
you know provide the same experience
like be the mcdonald’s of your
of your area right provide the same
experience every time it’s going to be
clean it’s going to be friendly it’s
going to be a positive atmosphere and
the machines are going to work and if
you got coins the changes are going to
be full and if you got cards you know
then the card machines are working and
i mean if you can do those things
then i mean that’s a recipe for success
in the business now there’s other things
you can do on top of that but
that baseline is
you know why we have so many zombie last
zombie maps is because people don’t take
care of those basic things
like it’s like cliches are cliches for a
reason like the fundamentals of the
fundamentals like if you execute well on
the fundamentals that gives you
permission to try
other stuff or maybe not permission it’s
probably
a little bit of hyperbole but
if you try to build fancy stuff on top
of poor fundamentals you probably aren’t
going to get the return on your fancy
stuff that you expected because
it kind of ends up trickling down to the
customer experience if they find the
seams in your experience and
you know that gives people a reason to
choose something different or not change
the habit right like that’s kind of why
i look at that return customers and i go
and i look at the
you know the the cards that were new
that week in november that we did that
stuff and it’s like okay you know have
they come back right have they loaded
more money on their cards um are they
just still exhausting that promo balance
right like those are
like we’ve earned the we’ve earned the
permission for them to keep serving them
they’ve changed their habit and now now
they’re with us
yeah that i mean there it is and that’s
it right like the the whole key is to
help
potential customers develop the rhythm
and develop the habit of coming to your
store
and being your customer right and so by
giving them that consistent positive
experience every time that they can
expect
uh man it just makes it easier and
easier for them to you know stay in that
groove and and stay your customer keep
them
yep and decrease that churn rate
exactly uh all right so so far i mean
you said you’ve been in doors have been
open
six ish months now
yep what
what’s the verdict how are you feeling
about this business at this point are
you regretting uh jumping ship with your
nine to five or are you uh are you are
you uh all about this business right now
all about this business i mean it is i
said
it is it if i think
i think i might
have been a little more rattle
if i hadn’t spent time
listening in or watching in in the
communities
right like the podcasts that you do the
facebook groups the
you know the message boards those things
um because like i said we talked earlier
on that whole if versus win thing like
most everything that has come up
is i’ve
i’m not surprised because someone said
it’s probably going to happen or it
happened to me
in this way
um you know the probably the the you
know the thing that
is struggle most is kind of still
dealing with
you know trying to keep a lean operation
and being an attended store
when someone
can’t make their shift the impact that
that has
on your life of rushing up to get there
or you know your manager who’s already
put in enough hours for the week is
going in to put put more and you know
you just want to
keep right by the team so you know do i
do get frustrated
when i have to pull an unexpected shift
up there i’m a do get frustrated do i
regret it
no because you know in some ways it
still points out that there’s still
holes
in the systems and processes that that
we just have to work out right and maybe
my staffing model is wrong
um and i have to figure out a better way
a better way to do that
yeah
all right so
what’s
what’s the goal here what’s the plan for
you i mean do you have like a certain
number that you want to get are you are
you content with one are you trying to
build an empire are you taking over the
whole pacific northwest and then the
west coast
i’m not ready to go down with you big
boys in in california i i have family
down in that that area and we talk about
maybe
um you know investing in something that
they do but you know i read i read the
stories from you guys i don’t i don’t
know if i’m ready to play in in the
major leagues down there but no
definitely
definitely i want to get uh you know i
think i think i want to get a couple
more stores up here that’s been the plan
from the start but there’s always this
part of me that says with just you know
the the
the outlay of capital to do this has not
gotten smaller
in the two years that that i’ve been
doing this
and
you know is there
should i go down the route of being more
aggressive at building out the business
by going harder on pickup and delivery
and utilizing
the machines that i already have
that one is a totally different animal
like um
i love operations but that is a highly
operational business that like i don’t
know
like i would have to find a really
really strong person leader in that area
to do that and and bet ahead of that
stuff so i still feel like there’s
there’s a couple more stores
in my future
um ideally if i could find one
to buy um i think that would be great
um but kind of you know you heard me
like i love my 4 000 square foot
standalone building on a major arterial
and you know it’s like
i know how that model works and i kind
of keep looking for that next location
maybe a little smaller because kind of
you know um
there’s a you know the
i’d probably go north the population
just goes down a little bit there um you
know everything’s pretty spread out here
anyway even when we’re dense so
um or
yeah it’s like rants crazy where the
people are dead so who knows it’s like i
sometimes i drive by this area and
there’s all these new apartments and i’m
just like i should just drive a truck
so yeah i mean the the jury’s out
definitely definitely want to grow needs
to grow to meet my
aspirations i guess the the house still
looks like building another store but
you know still like i said i still feel
like six months in i’m still getting my
feet wet so
um
there’s still things to learn and not
other than internal pressure there’s not
the internal pressure to make that
there’s not pressure to make that
decision
right now on how i grow
right so i mean are you guys doing
uh pick up and delivery now or drop off
laundry now or are you
not doing that yet we are like we are
doing it was hilarious so um
you know we we use cents for our our
point of sale and stuff like that and
you know i i wanted to take a pragmatic
approach to draw opportunistic approach
to drop off and by day two we had four
drop-off orders
it was just great it’s like oh wow we
gotta learn how to do these um it’s
still like a fledgling part of the
business um
but you know there’s definitely
opportunities to grow and like i
i definitely want to do pickup in
delivery but like i said there’s still a
lot of other stuff in the queue ahead of
it on our operational side so that’s
like i call like that’s why i like the
door dash integration with with sense
right um is just is i can get those
opportunities to customers like they
come in they find us and
you know it’s it’s revenue that that i
wouldn’t have and i’m and i’m happy to
take it
and um and that’s great so i can i can
learn how to do this
um and that’s fine it’s just like it’s
just weird how
and it’s one of the things that kind of
frustrated me in general about you know
participating in the different
laundromat communities that are out
there is
you know there’s all this x won’t work
right
doordash pickup and delivery won’t work
signage doesn’t work no one reads it
that that doesn’t work and all i all i
just want to say to people is say just
like what didn’t work for me
put for me at the end of that sentence
right because um
it you know there’s there’s 800 million
ways to skin a cat on this stuff and um
you know like right now for me being
able like it
if i wanted to take advantage of i call
those opportunistic you know pickup and
delivery customers we don’t see you know
we see a couple of them more than once
but usually they’re kind of in and out
and gone right i get those without
i i cannot permissively take advantage
of those opportunistic drop off ones now
when i get a quorum of people in an area
where it makes sense to run around and
do a schedule like okay
we can do that but until then i get to i
get to keep learning and i get to make
some money and i get to make some more
happy customers all that like it works
for me
it doesn’t mean it’s gonna work for you
but you know like science like i put up
more you know every time i don’t have a
ton of signs i’m super thoughtful about
the signs
um i don’t like to have a lot of no
signs
but kind of every time we add a sign
we end up with just a few uh a fewer a
few fewer questions
right because you know like the card
system the first time in your store it
doesn’t make sense it’s funny you talk
to customers and they they think it’s
their fault that they don’t understand
like i have to go to this machine and
get a card and i have to set it on this
little card reader and tell
you know it reads this thing and oh that
how the dryers work it’s just like no
you know once i teach you the secret
handshape
you’ll you’ll know how to use these
things it’s not it’s not your fault but
you know it’s
it it’s you know
people they they don’t necessarily
always like to ask questions like we’ll
answer them but just putting up you know
putting up a little sticker around the
machine that says pods go in the machine
not in the compartments right like i
know enough people
read those within one week that the
amount of time my people spent cleaning
pod
packages out of soap compartments like
that that was worth it right so somebody
read it
right
so it’s it’s fine uh anyway that’s my my
probably rambling rant on on that stuff
i mean i love that rant i love it i love
it i love it because i think we do have
i as a
as an industry as a whole we do have
that quote unquote
doesn’t work mentality and you know one
of the things that i think
is refreshing about what’s happening in
our industries we’re getting a lot of
new like fresh blood into this industry
who’s a little more thoughtful about the
way they’re running their business or a
little more business savvy
a little more technical um and a lot of
you know people who are getting in the
business who are brand new
don’t know any better than that’s not
gonna work right and so they do it and
you know sometimes it works for them you
know and that i love saying just add for
me at the end of it right because
there is and it’s one of the things that
makes i think this business great
is there is no one way to run this
business you can
you can run this business in a myriad of
different in fact there’s there’s a ton
of people who’ve been on the podcast who
run it a myriad of different ways
successfully
and are achieving their goals whatever
those goals might be in different ways
with this one business so
i love that and i would i was going to
let you keep rolling with that rant
because i am like 100 on board with what
you’re saying there
no but that you know it also for me over
time it’s been reflective of
the communities i i choose to
participate in now like you know i said
i
i will research things even the smallest
birches to death and i can tell you the
amount of time i spent trying to learn
everything i could
before i opened the store
and
um but i prune that down now because
there’s just you know there’s definitely
places where people are gathering
and your community is one of them of
people that have that
growth mindset and by nature are trying
to challenge
this stuff and not
accepting
that and like those are the places that
i’m gonna keep participating in um
because frankly like i tulsa was like i
don’t know that there’s an original idea
in my entire store maybe one
right
but i went around and looked at other
people’s and i listened to what people
were talking about on the podcast and
things like that and i just pick and
choose the stuff that that i thought
would be
would be reflective of
the vision that i had and how i wanted
to run the business and the
and how i want that business to fit
in my lifestyle
um so yeah i mean it’s just
it’s just fun to be a part of that stuff
and figure out and you know they talk
about
you know
i can’t imagine joining the interest
industry in a different part because you
you hear like
it’s you’re on your own
and you’re solo and like you know just
hearing you know it was
it was just you and dave talking
yesterday probably i listened to
yesterday on the podcast that you just
have right and it’s kind of like my kind
of my time lurking around the industry
maps
pretty well to the time you guys have
been spent so i don’t know any different
like of being out there on your own and
not having people talking about this
stuff
um so i’m super i’m super lucky that
i’ve been able to glean from so many
people over the past two plus years um
in setting my place up to be what i
thought reflected what i thought was the
right thing yeah that’s awesome yeah
very cool to hear that and you know
thanks for sharing that uh all right we
have a section called down to business
and down to businesses let’s just talk a
little bit more about your actual
business get a little details about it
so where are you located
i’m in everett washington it’s a suburb
of seattle probably about 20 25 minutes
north of downtown seattle okay
and uh
so you own one laundromat right one
laundry mat yeah and i’m assuming with
those rigorous lease negotiations you
were not negotiating against yourself
and so you don’t own the real estate
with that laundromat right no and i i
tried i well i tried to get a clause in
that i would get first write a refusal
um to buy
but uh even even my agent laughed at
that and you told me like if you get it
good on you but i’ll tell you like five
reasons why they won’t give that to you
but
i tried hey always try and i think it
would have been a hilarious bomb to drop
if you would have been like oh no yeah
no i bought the real estate i was
negotiating with myself that would have
been great next time next time uh
all right so you said you’ve been in the
business for about
six months since you got the doors open
but you’ve been
you’ve been going through it for almost
two years now yeah
yeah i mean it’s funny it was like when
you forced me to say it is it is
literally maybe in a little more than
two years i’ve been around it on the
journey
yeah
yesterday
yeah yeah which is pretty cool actually
and it is pretty fun that that does
coincide like it’s a lit like a couple
months before uh before i started the
podcast here i think it started in
in may or march march or may i don’t
know so it’s right it’s like right
around uh almost exactly coinciding so
that is kind of funny
um all right so uh what’s it what does
it cost to do some laundry can you give
us just i mean we don’t need
you know all the details but about what
does it cost to do some laundry in the
pacific northwest at your laundromat
right now um i think it probably costs
well at least the washers seem to cost a
little more than other places so i have
four sizes again my two load machines
are 489
my four load machines are 8 39
6 loads are 11 39 and my extra-large
like eight loaders
eighty pound ones there they’re 14.39
and probably that’s all with uh price
increase on the horizon here in the near
future as kind of you know minimum wage
went up i pay ahead i don’t want to be
like i’m pay ahead of that stuff but i
just lifted my people with a minimum
wage increase in washington and then
two out of my three utility providers
have already landed on
me their notices of
utility increases on that so yeah so
kind of like kind of just under five
bucks to just about under 15 bucks um
for a load uh in the washer and then my
dryers are 45 cents for every five
minute increment
that’s awesome i’m jealous
yeah you know it’s funny it’s like so
it’s weird to talk not weird i don’t
know what the right word is
so
because i have no idea how is the best
substitute for weird when you’re trying
to be polite
you know it was funny is
when people price shop us we can usually
get them to try it like like once you
get your stuff in the store and then you
realize this place is more expensive
like they typically
typically don’t walk out
right they at least give us a whirl and
kind of what i was hearing at least kind
of really early on was
their total cost
was ending up similar
to what they were paying up if the you
know probably the better longer methods
just south of me um because the dryers
would operate so much more efficiently
and they would they would get out of
there a little faster so
um you know so that’s my my per prices
but kind of you look at the all-in
solutions i may be
more comparable with with those folks um
right now but like i said i probably
within next two months i gotta i gotta
land a little price increase coming up
to deal with the
stuff that’s been landed upon me
yeah about just out of curiosity about
how much more are you for the washes
than the the better place that’s north
of you
i think it’s probably a dollar probably
at a dollar for well
yeah i see that probably on the smaller
ones and i bet you i bet you on
because i can’t remember on this one
it’s been a while since i’ve been in
there which reminds me i should go back
is i’m probably two or three dollars
higher than them on the large and the
extra large machines i would bet
yeah yeah
so why
why do you think
i i’m like
so here’s why i’m asking this question
because we talk about a lot on this
podcast and like i know just a lot of
top operators say hey you know don’t
compete on price you mentioned that
earlier you don’t compete on price and
you know it’s all about adding value so
why are customers coming to
your store as opposed to maybe
the other one up the road if they’re
gonna be able to do it cheaper there
what what are you offering that maybe
this other laundromat’s not you haven’t
yet i have a better experience like it
is a better experience and it kind of
depends on what you’re looking for like
i talk
it’s clean and my people are there all
the time right the machines are new um
the other ones down the street are
probably like 10 years old or so
um
you know
by being new they operate faster people
can get in and out a little bit faster
i have awesome parking like
awesome parking so it’s easier to get in
and out of the store but the reality is
is we religiously focus
on the customer experience
and you know fortunately
you know 90 percent of that the clean
and safe was known up front and then
it’s just a matter of kind of where you
tweak on the other 10
to make sure that you’re you’re still
you’re still you know
being where people want i mean like
here’s a weird one
i love that word weird um so because of
a card store
um
you have to you know our bathroom is
unlocked with the card right and the
card because of the way rich set it up
because he knows these things has to
have one dollar on it
right and
it is amazing how many you know when you
have homeless people and such that are
in the area that put in a dollar on that
card
right and it is funny there will be a
customer once a month that will tell you
is this like they figured out like
i know why you got that
like that it’s like yeah and they like
they like that because they know like
there’s going to be fewer surprises and
when they go into that bathroom it’s
going to
damn clean yeah
yeah well yeah which is smart i mean
that’s a veteran move for sure because i
mean that is a big issue that i think a
lot of laundromat
owners deal with is trying to keep those
restrooms clean and we’ve had people on
the podcast before say hey i’ll tell you
how good your laundromat is doing based
on your bathrooms alone
uh which you know
but i mean i think there is some kind of
truth in that you know if we’re if we’re
taking care of our bathrooms we’re
taking care of our laundromat basically
and i like
you know the veteran move of
you know
nobody can just find a card off the
ground and then just you know come use
that bathroom you know you gotta have
something on it
it pays off like it’s been working out
one of the one of the many tricks that
rich designed in so i was super
fortunate to have a great partner in
building this store
yeah
all right uh going back to
your business uh what about can you talk
to me a little bit about turns per day
yeah um it’s kind of like you know i
like to look more a year i look more at
the number like the number of customers
that are coming to the store as the
benefit of a card system but kind of i
i’ve been
getting up in like the three three and a
half range
on a regular basis lately kind of i’m
averaging over the course of the week so
um
you know definitely was hoping to get
that closer closer to four and
sometimes it happens but
sometimes it doesn’t but that like
that’s fine like i’m just looking really
it’s like
so like i i look more at like the number
of cards that are going through my store
the percentage of those that are from
that are known return customers
and what i either make and i go back and
forth on this is what i make every time
a card hits the store or what um
what my average
at least for the self-serve revenue is
for every washer cycle
that that runs the store because you
know really
you know someone could come in and run
one two three
three loads but if i can look at a a
washer cycle because you know there are
the people whose dryers break down and
come in
but those are you know those are the
education so like right this month
i’m leaning more towards just watching
what my my machine revenue
for washer cycle
is and tracking that but yeah turns
about three and a half i think is where
i’m sitting right now
are you keeping track it’s a little bit
off topic but i’m just curious about
this as you know a self-proclaimed
numbers guy that you are are you keeping
track of
how long
it is between customers
visits
i would like to um so one of my like
my frustration coming from tech is that
a lot of the tech in this industry
is like 10 years behind
right okay and um and it’s still like
it’s still useful but so i
um
i end up hand coding a fair amount of
data
um
from laundryworks reports into my
massive excel spreadsheet
um that and that just gives me like to
be able to
religiously track like what my most best
hours and stuff like that are um but
because the
industry was built on
turns right looking at data by customer
is super duper hard and i just think
it’s because nobody is asking for things
like that so
for me like um you know there’s another
company i’m doing consulting for right
now like we run our business off of
shopify
and there is a whole cottage industry of
plug-ins and stuff for shopify and like
one that we use is a data connector that
just literally connects right into all
that data don’t care about the reports
or whatnot and then i can suck it out
into a power bi and i think that like
right now i have to do brute force to
look at like
i kind of have to go customer by
customer
to figure out um how frequently they are
they are coming in so i sample that
stuff
um you know like there’s definitely
at least of the the customers who are
spending the most there’s kind of like
there’s
there’s the weekly cohort and the
bi-weekly cohort
and kind of then there’s probably the
every four to six week
cohort of folks but like you tapped into
something that i would love
i would love to be able just to look at
at the click of a button
um because also um like mine i like this
is me being an owner who’s designed his
store to operate without being him being
in the store
like it’s funny like i went during our
last team meeting
and
i read off you know you don’t have to
register your card with us but you know
we encourage people to do so
and i went and took the top 15 names of
the people who’d spent the most
and literally i just read their names
and someone if not multiple people on my
team knew those people
right and they’re like yeah i’m not
surprised
and like you say okay who do you
who do you think the customer is that
spent the most
they’re
pretty damn accurate just without even
have to looking look at some report but
being able to look into that stuff and
say you know what and then it says like
so there’s the data like but then what
can i do
for those
customers to to encourage them
you know to make sure i’m not losing
them elsewhere i mean it’s like
you know like hey costco like i have a
costco credit card i get my annual
rebate right
you know should i have some sort of you
know rebate program at the end of the
year but it’s just like it’s all that
stuff it’s like you know there’s very
few
systems and i kind of i don’t think i
really grasp what making the decision
about my payments system
does when i was opening
that store because you know you just
feel coming from a world where you’re
looking at customer data
like all the time
and having to
look at it from a different different
perspective and back into who your top
customers are
it just it just doesn’t seem
like the right
way to go about it so like i you know on
my list of projects is to see what it
would take like to connect with laundry
works and write a data connector that
would just suck
the data out
you know into power bi whatever google
things and whatever like you know
but there’s not enough time in the day
for that stuff yet so i’m still hand
coded but you know it’s it’s it’s on my
mind like i think
um and i know it’s one of your hot
topics right it’s just data and things
like that but like i just wonder
you know like how can we get data out of
whatever systems we have as individual
operators
to to help make our businesses better
but then there’s like are there ways
that we can we can pool the data for
each other’s benefit to do comps
and things like that because you know
like coming from from microsoft and
working in the windows business forever
like i’m looking at data from idc and
forester and things like that and i can
learn a lot
about the market but
you know and like and that’s that’s you
know that’s money that you know we paid
those data firms for that they in turn
probably incented
channel partners providing that data for
them but
um i kind of i kind of sit probably more
in
in your camp right now because
you know that’s a huge investment to go
build that technology and do it and it
seems like
i don’t know how we would enable
us
to take advantage of that data in a way
that maybe
just you know a manufacturer of someone
could tap into that you know pay for a
subscription you know but then all of a
sudden
you know figure out how to open new
stores where
but i just like it just seems like and
maybe it’s just me like maybe
everybody’s fine like you know knowing
their stuff but like i just think the
ideas i have could help individual
owners own
do more with the stuff that they get
right and then there’s another stage is
how can we do more for each other and
then there’s like how can we do more for
the industry i don’t know but it just
like i said i i feel like i’m not
tapping in
to the data that
i know the data points exist there’s
just no way for me to get the stuff out
in a way that would really allow me
to really exploit it to look at
customers instead of
machine runs
yeah and and that’s i mean
okay i have i have a few things to say
about that first of all free advice for
laundry works laundry car like hey
that’s coming whether you guys do it or
not you guys better get on that uh the
customer centric i think a big part of
the reason why we’ve been a turns per
day focus as opposed to customer focus
is because
cards are still relatively new and most
stores are still coin stores and so it’s
really hard to track customer data
in a coin store it’s still difficult to
track machine data in a coin store but
it’s easier than tracking customers in a
coin store right and so that’s the
reason for that focus but that is
shifting
uh and it’s gonna shift fast and i know
that there’s you know solutions coming
you know for that stuff so if if uh
whoever is supplying a card payment
system out there right now like listen
to that section over again and
build in those capabilities because it’s
coming
and it’s going to change the way that we
run our businesses and it’s going to
drive a lot of sales for
the
provider who provides that solution for
us
the other thing that you said that
is uh man near and dear to my heart is
figuring out a way to
uh compile that data across multiple
owners so that we can all benefit from
it right and one of my concerns
in our industry right now is that
there are
people doing that right now
it’s just not individual owners uh who
are doing that it is manufacturing
companies and etc etc right and who are
building laundromats in some of our
backyards and stuff like that and we’re
not going to be able to compete unless
we can figure out how to get the data
that we need to make good business
decisions and how to compile that data
you know even anonymously on a larger
scale so that we can uh you know see
more of industry trends and see you know
what things are working and when they’re
working and why they’re not working and
all the things that we need
customer behavior data all that stuff
um you know and compiling all that
together
uh is i think gonna be
the wave of the future for our industry
going forward
yeah and so you said it
you i think you’re spot on right it’s at
the it’s the front end right it’s not a
function of now it’s just a function of
how the majority of the businesses are
run right and as things change i i just
think that the more we take a customer
focused approach on this stuff the the
better off we are and
you know there’s just
you know the
technology everywhere is just
democratizing industries of all types
right and there’s just
you know it’s definitely takes an
investment to get there but there’s
there’s no reason
right that there’s there’s not some way
in the way that you know shopify and
woocommerce have really you know made it
incredibly easy for anyone to open up
an online store right that we all as
laundromat owners shouldn’t
have really simpler ways of
getting customer data and and making our
business run that way should we choose
to go that route yeah yeah and like you
said we’re we’re behind on the time so
we need to
you know get this thing going a little
quicker uh all right are you fully
attended
fully attended yeah all the time okay do
you have one person there all the time
do you have multiple people you have
people overlapping how does that relax
yeah it’s an overlap there’s you know
kind of you know basically if you come
in on saturday or sunday
you’re definitely you know
gonna usually see two people there
except the tail in
kind of the
mondays tuesdays we usually have more
than one but it’s a lot of times it’s
that other one is focused more on weekly
maintenance tasks
um and then just the serving customers
and doing the you know keeping the soap
compartments clean and things like that
yeah okay uh and are you 100 card
yes
nice
all right i mean did you find any i mean
we kind of talked a little bit about the
learning curve of adding the card did
you get
much resistance from customers i think
that’s a big fear of a lot of people of
going to card is that they’re going to
alienate
people
uh who are just used to doing coins
no i mean no no resistance i think it
was
surprise
right i mean because
i mean most people and still i was there
just yesterday and traded in sixty
dollars with the quarters from a woman
who you know she doesn’t use a laundry
room at that option she’s like i wish i
wouldn’t have spent all the time
gathering up all these quarters how did
she get sixty dollars worth of quarters
right now that’s what i want to know
jeez
my bank will give me twenty dollars a
week i’m like good grief so um
but it was funny so the
one of the laundromats within a miami
they are a card store
right but they charge for their cards
and so taking the customer up to the
machine and saying you need to load
money onto a card and then they say so i
have to buy a card and you say no
give you the card for free
like that overcame like 95
of the objections
on on that stuff so you know they may
get
there’s still stuff there’s people that
get frustrated right about leaving a few
pennies and stuff on the card
and i understand that but um you know i
made
the decision and
yesterday when i wrote the check for a
new box of cards like
yeah
it’s like not free for everybody i don’t
feel good about that but you know
honestly like
when you look at the decisions like that
it’s hard but when you look at like
you look at customers and the people
that are spending you know
100 every three months or whatever like
that dollar it’s just i don’t care it’s
a cost of sale
on on that stuff so yeah you know like i
said when i when i looked at that you
know all the new cards that went out
during that week we did the double
dollar promotion
you know you see you look at the tail in
and like you look at their load value
and stuff you’re just like
you know they loaded five
doubled it up to ten and they were out
and you know they essentially lost a
dollar on the card
just like
whatever but then you go to the other
end of the spreadsheet and you see the
people that kept coming back you’re like
okay i’ll continue at least for now to
eat the dollar for that card um
see i’ve reserved the right to change
them change my mind on that but you know
it it just feels like
in an era of loyalty cards it just seems
weird to charge for that but i bet you
by the time i start reconsidering that
i’ll start
you know i i i just i i do have this
wonder in my mind about how
how long
is left for
stored value cards
right or if you know if
when i build store number two if i’m
going to go straight to just accepting
credit cards
at the machine don’t do that i love i
love my float right i love seeing that
number and and pulling in that revenue
early on but um i also you know just
you know just because i mean you take it
and it’s funny it’s like
my card is red right and one of the you
know two or three of the banks
operate up here their their cards are
red so you used to be a kind of i think
you could spot people and if they’re
putting a red card on the card reader
and then all of a sudden you realize oh
it’s a wells fargo card
like they’re like why can’t i put this
on the machine and it’s like yeah let me
take you over here and stuff like that
it’s just like to be you know the
behavior is is changing and you know i’m
probably
you know i’m in technology land so i’m
probably dealing with people are more in
tune to card and
base payments but you know there’s my
long-winded answer to your very short
question did you get a lot of pushback
on it not that i remember
yeah but there is that learning curve
and and all that so
uh all right last question for this
section is uh how many hours are you
spending on your business right now
you’re six months in
um it feels like like 20 to 30 a week i
try to target it like in the 15 to 20
range and i try to focus most of that
on right now on marketing and growing
the business versus doing this stuff in
the store i think when things creep up
um you know we had a stretch you know
between snow
and people getting sick like
you know was definitely pulling more
shifts in the store another thing i
gotta figure out is like
um
how i tackle a couple of how i offload a
couple of maintenance tasks that
currently that that i do
up there because that’s not durable in
the long term to scale but kind of right
now only comfortable with me with me
doing them and they don’t happen often
enough where you can pay somebody where
it makes sense to pay someone else to
come in so right but i mean you know
probably you know my goal is to get it
to probably 10 on a regular basis
um but right now 15 to 20 and sometimes
that spikes up when we’re dealing with
an issue
yeah yeah and you’re still in the growth
phase too i mean you’re still
kind of building that business and
figuring out and you know all that so
all right we have another section called
secret sauce
listen up it’s the secret sauce
and secret sauce is hey what advice do
you have or maybe what’s something
that’s working in your business right
now that maybe other owners can
implement to help them improve their
businesses
just focus on the customer experience
like make your decisions based on what
the customer experience
is
um
that’s what the root of everything had
at least i i mean i consider it i think
you know you could argue you know
like we’ll take example the people that
you know my pricing is set you know with
nines in the last digit and we sell
cards in whole dollar values
and there is one gentleman that was very
mad that
you know there was 46 cents left on his
card that that he couldn’t spend
um but you know the conscious decision
was you know we we could provide a
better experience by having a card based
store so i would just say in general
just look at everything you do and
decide if that’s the customer experience
that that you want like doesn’t often
cost that much but just
if you focus on the customer experience
usually good things are going to follow
yeah great advice and i mean
it that feels
obvious right
but it’s not obvious like we’ve all been
to enough laundromats to know
that either it’s not obvious or people
aren’t willing to put in the effort and
the work that it takes to create a good
experience because it does take some
effort it does take some work does take
some planning and some thought
and some
some leadership skills
and sometimes some leadership skills
leading people
you know on things you don’t know
anything about yet you know and so it
does take some work to do that however
the payoff is
i mean so much higher than not focusing
on the customer experience yeah i mean i
couldn’t charge the prices i did if i
didn’t like that’s my differentiator
that’s kind of what you say warrants the
the incremental
price and value above right it’s just
that’s not yeah that’s that’s my i mean
they said it seems
it’s simple but i don’t like a lot of
stuff in this
industry like it is simple but execution
is hard right it’s sometimes it’s hard
to stick to your guns and it’s hard to
see it through or it’s hard to deal with
the hiccups that come along the way but
you know
it’s not
that the customer experience is not
rocket science there are enough
companies in all sorts of industries out
there right now that are differentiating
themselves on customer experience that
you know in your immediate neighborhood
there’s probably someone you can go
steal an idea from today
there’s your secret sauce go steal an
idea from another level right like love
it
like make it better but yeah it’s just
like you know i said i don’t know how
much original thought
is in the components of my entire store
but i feel like i combined them in a way
that may be a little different yeah no
it’s great and just to clarify i don’t
think brian is recommending you go
steal an atm out of another store and
put it in your store to have a better
experience i don’t think i don’t i don’t
want to put words in your mouth but
those people haven’t it sounds like
those people have enough folks trying to
steal their atms yeah yeah steal ideas
not things yes
somebody should make a shirt that says
that steal ideas not things
maybe i’ll make it i would wear that uh
okay we
we’re devolving here sorry that’s that’s
on me uh we have another section called
pro tips pro
tips
and pro tips is for people who were are
where you were at maybe 18 months ago
where you’re like i want to buy a
laundromat or i want to build a
laundromat like what do they need to
know before they venture into
this business
i mean
like what i wrote down so like you got
to find a good partner right like you
more than anyone like reinforce
that knowledge into me
on the journey and right and like the
importance of the kind of trust but
verify
and
be
skeptically skeptical but honestly like
the here’s like i spent
i told you i couldn’t do anything in
construction right
i spent a lot of my time like tweaking
my website and things like that
i should have put all that time i gotta
have a website
just put all that time into google my
business
right make sure that you nail that
profile with everything and everything
goes there first before social and
everything like that because when i look
at them you know
you know and i like when i say the
number of people that are searching and
things like that like i know they’re not
actually searching for me but i appear
on a map and things like that like the
first place i go right now is to make
sure that i have this stuff on my google
my business profile because that that’s
like the number one place that people go
and then you know and then i make sure
that i got my stuff correct on all the
map sites because you know that’s the
near me
of the search equation so if you nail
that you know you got to have it you
know the right information on your on
your website and stuff like that but
i’ve like i wrote way too much copy and
stuff like that and like if you were to
snapshot my website in july versus now
i’ve really
i’ve really paired it down to just the
the essential stuff there but like
google my business make sure you nail it
because
that’s where people are finding it it’s
the number one search engine like you
can do seo you can do sem on your
website you can pay
that stuff but
it’s free and it’s pretty easy to plug
information in there so just
nail that first and then worry about the
other stuff online presence
yeah and as somebody who has a company
who builds websites for laundromat
owners and other business owners but
laundromat owners specifically i would
wholeheartedly concur with that like we
want you to have a solid website you
know for your laundromat we do think
that’s important however
you’re exactly right and we we’ll tell
people this all the time right like
your google my business is going to
drive you more customers than your
website will it’s important to have a
website and for somewhere you know
somewhere for people to go to get a feel
for you know you online before they get
a feel for you
you know in person a lot of times or to
or to you know relay information
and you know especially if you’re just a
self-serve business you just need a
simple website right that’s it like i
should that’s a great qualifier is um
i i design my business self-service
first right to drive that um i will i
want my full service to grow
and like i know that when that time
comes i’m gonna like i don’t want to be
perceived as speaking out of both sides
of my mouth like when that time comes
i’m going to have to invest
in doing those things because you know
finding a laundromat delivery service
isn’t
isn’t as a map search
right it’s just it’s just
different and especially if you want
you know commercial customers or why not
so yeah like i’ll get there on that
other stuff but you know like you said
first time coming out
nail google my business for yourself sir
absolutely and we’ll talk we’ll talk
people out of you know people sometimes
people want to come you know come out of
the gate gung-ho with their website and
they just have a self-serve laundry and
they want to go for the highest package
and and we’ll try to talk them out of it
because i think you need a solid
one-page
you know scrolling laundromat that has
your information that gives people you
know the feel of you know your
laundromat and your environment and
communicate the information that people
are going to be looking for but that
google my business account is going to
drive more traffic uh especially
initially for a self-serve laundromat
and you’re right once you start going
into
pickup and delivery and i would argue
probably even uh to an extent the
drop-off service then you need a little
bit more sophisticated website and that
is you know if you’re going to make an
investment in your website either time
or money
that’s when you want to make a little
bit uh bigger investment in your website
because that’s where it starts to matter
more people are placing orders online
through your website
yeah and i guess another thing is even
on like that first website i would just
tell people makes make sure that the
design is is responsive
and like that may seem like technical
but like know that when you hear that
that means it’s going to look good on
someone’s phone like without you doing a
whole lot of extra work and like i was
you know just looking at the stats on
device usage um on my website i was i
was really
surprised
at the percent of it that’s coming from
the phone so you know again you gotta
have something there and that’s
something you have better be easy to
consume info on people’s phone because
that’s where
that’s where they’re gonna that’s
usually the you know for me it was where
the majority of people were consuming my
website from which was kind of a shock
yeah and i i don’t know off top my head
but i think across
the board on all the websites we’ve
built for laundromat owners specifically
you know i it’s well over 80 percent of
searches that we’re seeing that are on
mobile and the reason for it i think is
probably because nobody really sits down
at their desk thinking
hey where can i go you know to a
laundromat right they’re sitting on the
couch being like oh man i got to do some
laundry i’m smelling ripe or whatever
they’re driving around like hey where’s
a laundromat near me because my kids are
filthy disgusting creatures right
um
another kind of segment that we have
that uh i’m just going to throw out
there and you may not have anything for
this but do you have any resources that
have helped you along this way
especially since you’re kind of fresh
off of this you know and obviously i
think rich has been an awesome uh
resource for you in particular do you
have any resources that you would
recommend either business to help you
with your business or help you
uh grow personally to be you know a
better business owner so seriously and
it’s not gratuitous um like
you’re the community you built around
laundromat resource your podcast in your
forums right like that that was you know
that was the first place i found you
like you left my
my teenage kid so we have a like a
vacation cabin that’s three hours away
all right and like literally every week
i would download the podcast and the
kids are like do we have to listen to
another laundromat podcast so like if
i’m not you tell them i’m offended by
that
i’m just kidding one of them walked by
right now and they heard me talking to
you like that’s the laundry guy right so
i would say like just consume it’s your
podcast dave men’s podcasts were great
um you know and just you know your
forums obviously
and then like i now that i’m in the
business there’s a couple of the
laundromat owners format uh on facebook
um that have been like those are the
ones that have been probably most
helpful on like the real time experience
of running a laundromat and the things
that come up um
you know outside like
you know personal
development um probably
i would say the thing like you i’m a
numbers guy right i come from tech
i would say
it’s worth a dabble for folks to look at
objectives and key results um okrs
as a way to to run their business um you
know there’s a
great
book i think it was like is by intel but
there’s more of a story one called
radical focus by christina watkey that
like was more impactful and i think it’s
easier to consume on how
how this might impact your business um
because like i said when you have the
data in this business there’s a lot of
data points that you could track
and um there’s only a few that really
matter right and so what are the key
results and how are your activities
going against that but like the
objective side of it is just help me
like why it’s really easy for me to
answer your question about store number
two right like that’s
on my list of objectives and what are
the things that i’m doing this month
there
and then kind of on the mindset book um
there was a book that i read early on in
covid um by a guy named trevor moad who
unfortunately recently passed away he’s
a kind of a mental skills coach um you
know probably most notice at least for
seattle folks for his work with russell
wilson but he did a lot of work with um
alabama football auburn football things
like that and um the book’s called it
takes what it takes and it’s really
around the mindset of neutral thinking
um which i just think is super valuable
because
um you know one of the things they found
in working with collegiate football
players is um for a lot of them
telling them to be positive wasn’t
credible right just like oh you’re going
to be positive and everything’s going to
work out right right but just teaching
them to to not be negative
was a super important step and then when
you play that out right you’re you know
your self-talk to yourself is you know
probably 10 times more powerful
than
what anyone else says to you and like
negative talk is you know another
multiplier so you know just not talking
negatively about yourself
to yourself is a huge mindset changer
and like that’s like when you kind of
like that whole if win it’s like when i
deal with these situations it’s like i
try not to bring judgment
to them like they are something in front
of me that you have to deal with
and and move forward so like that book
was was super super impactful for me and
like you know i hand it out to people
all the time good book yeah that’s
awesome i haven’t read that one but i’m
going to i’m thinking back as you’re
talking to like when i first bought my
first laundromat right and i
was sold you know that it was going to
be easy i was going to have to go once
or twice a week collect the coins i was
going to make a boatload of money and
you know should be good to go and when
it didn’t turn out that way there was
just an immense amount of
stress and pressure and i mean it was
really like mentally
taxing right because i’m like it’s not
supposed to be like this it’s supposed
to be easy and like 95 percent of people
or whatever succeed in this business how
am i one of the five percent that’s just
falling on my face right and all this
friction that i was feeling because i
expected
it to be one way and it was kind of the
opposite of what i was expecting right
and it wasn’t until i mean i i have not
read this book and i’m going to read it
because i’m resonating with what you’re
saying about it
but it wasn’t until
i got to the point where i was like okay
i need to be done with that it’s just
gonna be easy and
you know i’m not gonna have to spend any
time there and i’m gonna rake in the
dough i need to be done with that right
because
and kind of like the title for me is
like money like it takes what it takes
right like it it
you know i i just i’m gonna have to go
every single day for a while until i
figure this thing out right just that’s
what it’s going to take so that’s what
it is so i shouldn’t stress out about it
because
you know it takes what it takes to
succeed in the business so
i haven’t read it but i’m going to oh
and the thing is like that’s what he
talks about like when you pursue
excellence
like and he talks a lot with athletes
they think that when you’re pursuing
excellence you’re going to have a whole
range of choices but honestly if you’re
going to be an excellent youth athlete
right but you’ve talked about yourself
your choice is narrow like you want to
be in the olympics
right you have a very narrow set of
choices that you know like you’re ruling
out all these other things that could
take up your time because you’re
choosing to go
down this path and it’s just like look
if you want to be excellent at something