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Making Things Happen with Apple Crider

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What made you decide to choose this career path?

 

Ever since I saw my mom speak on stage for the first time when I was 14, I always knew that I wanted to spread a message to other people. At that time I had no idea what my message was though so I knew I had to take some time to learn and to develop my ideas and hone in on what was actually important to me and what I wanted to do with my life. Over time, as I learned more about what I enjoyed doing and what I was passionate about, I always had this idea in the back of my mind that I wanted to share a message with other people. At the age of 18 I took action on this desire for the first time when I started my YouTube channel. Through creating daily videos, I began to tell other people about what I was doing as an 18 year old when it came to personal finance. Money had always been something that fascinated me and I’d always been interested in how people interacted with money and the role that money played in our lives, so I decided to make videos documenting my process building good financial habits at a young age. I really enjoyed this process but eventually realized that my passion was not about personal finance. It was instead about empowering young people to create a life that made them feel fulfilled. At first I had honed in on personal finance because I noticed how important it was for young people to think about their financial situation so they could establish good habits for the rest of their lives.

However, as I learned more about the world in entrepreneurship I realized that I could be sharing a more powerful message than just teaching young people how to improve their personal finances. I also realized that as a 18 year old, I really only had so much life experience that I could be sharing with people around me. I wanted to create a platform where other people could teach young entrepreneurs what they had learned through building businesses that were much farther along and more developed than mine. This is why I started podcasting and interviewing successful entrepreneurs on my show called Young Smart Money. I saw the value they could provide to my audience, and I saw that they had so many experiences that I just didn’t. Through the process of podcasting, I was able to hone in on my larger goal which is to empower 100,000 young people to create a life that makes them feel fulfilled and excited every single day. As of right now I am pursuing that goal through podcasting and to public speaking, however I’m not particularly attached to these platforms. If I come across a better way to pursue my goal I will not hesitate to jump on that because podcasting, public speaking, and social media are simply means for me to achieve this goal and tools in my toolbox that I can utilize to move closer to this goal. Building a following online, or growing a podcast are simply means to an end of impacting 100,000 young people. When I looked at Corporate America and working a nine-to-five job, I didn’t see that same potential impact people in the way that I could if I went out and started spreading my message through my own avenues. For me, entrepreneurship isn’t so much about the income, it’s about the impact that I can have on other people and that is what has drawn me to what I do now.

 

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

 

So when I was getting started podcasting I had absolutely no idea what I was doing, I actually didn’t even know the podcast was until I decided that I wanted to start one. So going into this, I had absolutely no idea what I wanted to do with my podcast. All I knew is that podcasting was new, trendy, and it was a good way to reach people. Because I had no experience podcasting I didn’t really know what kind of preparation I need to do before sitting down and recording my first podcast. I decided to do all of the preparation. For my first podcast I wrote out a 40-page document outlining word-for-word what I was going to say. We are talking about 40 pages of dense text in a Google doc on my computer that I spent hours painstakingly writing out. I decided to repeat the same process for the next three episodes as well, so when I went to record for the first time I had four different 40-page Google Documents about the different topics I wanted to cover. Essentially I had written an entire book just to record four podcasts. From there, I went into a recording booth, pulled up my ridiculously long documents, and proceeded to read them word for word in this booth. Each one took me close to an hour to read and by the time I finished reading the first one I was extremely drained. I proceeded to sit in this booth reading all four of these documents for about four hours to record my first four podcasts.

I can tell you now looking back at these but they were absolutely horrendous. I still leave them up and published just to show people that your first podcasts are always your worst podcasts. They were extremely dry, I sounded like a robot, there was no emotion, and can only be described as unpleasant to listen to. Eventually I realized that I could have a much larger impact with my podcast if I decided to interview other people and that interviewing others would not require me to write out a 40-page document (yes please!).

The biggest takeaway that I had from this though is that you really just need to start, and once you do start you’re going to be able to see where you can improve, the things that you want to change, and how you can start making things better. But a lot of that’s not going to be clear until you actually start doing something because until you start doing you can assume and try to predict how it’s going to go, but you’re never going to actually know what’s going to happen until you do it. So even though I don’t think I would recommend writing out a 40-page document for each podcast episode you do, I think the most important thing is just to get started in whatever way, shape, or form you can. Don’t worry about things being perfect the first time because they won’t be. Just worried about things being done and about you being able to learn from doing and make your next at bat better than your last at bat.

 

What do you think makes your company/personal brand stand out?

 

In any business that you start or any project that you work on, it’s been important to have things that set you apart from everyone else. If you try to be the next Gary Vaynerchuk or the next Grant Cardone, you’re likely not going to have much success with that because they’ve been being Gary Vaynerchuk and Grant Cardone for decades. They’ve amassed millions of followers, have extremely loyal tribes, and you’re not likely to really have an impact on that. A mentor of mine once told me that “your vibe builds your tribe” and I think that’s extremely true and something that I have been able to lean into very heavily from my time building my company in my personal brand. There aren’t many other 20 year olds out there with blue hair, wearing colorful bandanas, and whose name is also a fruit. Beyond the superficial things that set me apart from most of the other people out there, I find it extremely important to have a strong why and a strong vision behind everything that I’m doing. With my podcast for example when I’m reaching out to potential guests that I want to have on the show, if I can show them that I’m extremely passionate about what I am doing and that I really care about the people that I’m serving, they’re so much more likely to be willing to come on the podcast then if it was clear that I did not have a strong vision or care about what I was doing. When people can tell that you’re genuine and really are in it to help other people out and not just help yourself out, it’s a lot easier to achieve your goals. Most people’s BS meter is pretty good and even if you’ve been able to trick yourself into believing that you’re in it for other people, you will have a hard time tricking other people.

I see so many young people getting started with entrepreneurship whether that be through social media marketing, or dropshipping, or content creation, because they see other people making money online doing that thing and they want to start making money online doing that thing. That’s not where I’m coming from. And that’s not where the 150+ successful entrepreneurs that I have interviewed on my podcast are coming from either. I use my podcast as a tool to study successful people and to allow them to share their stories with others. Through those stories, one of the things that I find time and time again is that the people who feel fulfilled, and the people who have success in the things that they do, are not motivated by helping themselves, they’re motivated by their ability to help other people. So many people get into entrepreneurship for selfish reasons and most of the time those are the people wind up failing quite quickly. If you don’t have a strong vision and you aren’t impacting other people, it’s going to be really difficult for you to continue moving forward when you’re faced with some of the setbacks and struggles that all entrepreneurs are faced with. Being able to bring yourself back to a larger why and seeing the people that you’re impacting is extremely powerful in setting yourself apart from everyone else and really building a name and a personal brand for yourself.

 

What’s a quote that you live by?

 

“There are three types of people in this world. Firstly, there are people who make things happen. Then there are people who watch things happen. Lastly, there are people who ask, what happened? Which do you want to be?” This quote resonates strongly with me and is something that I come back to quite frequently whenever I’m thinking about what my role is in any project or business that I am working on. From what I’ve observed in my life, the distribution is roughly 1% of people who are making things happen, 9% of people who are watching things happen, and 90% of people we’re asking “what happened?” Personally, I prefer to spend most of my time in the making things happen category and the watching things happen category because this is where growth happens.

When you make things happen you’re creating content, you are building something that can help other people, you are impacting the world in some way by bringing something new into it. When you’re watching things happen you’re studying success. You’re learning from people who have done the things that you want to do and finding ways that you can implement the things that they have done into your own life. You’re learning from mentors in-person, by reading books, from podcasts, and really anywhere you can find them. When you’re asking “what happened?” you’re moving through life oblivious to much of what’s happening around you. You’re not observing the subtitles and nuances around you, or thinking about how you can apply the findings of someone else into your own life, or what you can be doing to ensure that you are seeing consistent growth in the aspects of your life that are important to you. This is an area that I spend very little time in because is where I see the least amount of growth in what I’m doing, and provides me with the least insight for how I can move forward more effectively with whatever I’m trying to achieve. In order to stay in the first two categories, I consistently ask myself the question “what am I doing right now?” Am I creating? Am I consuming? Or am I wandering? By reflecting on the answer to this question and finding my patterns that lead me to wondering, I’m able to ensure that I spend as much time as possible in the prior to categories and continue to move towards my goals in the places that I want to be.

 

Apple Crider 

Nathan Ray Ortega is the founder of influencer podcasts. Nathan helps those share their great story, by helping entrepreneurs, authors, influencers, millionaires and many more get on podcasts and tv shows around the world, his passion is to help share the stories of the few to impact the lives of the many. Nathan had to overcome many obstacles during his journey, from having 16 different jobs at age 20 to being homeless and sleeping in a car with his pregnant girlfriend, and even changing in public bathrooms for 2 months, but during that time Nathan stayed motivated and listened to many powerful stories that changed his life for the better. Nathan thanks the power of podcasting for motivating him to push further with every episode of entrepreneurship. ''Life is never a straight road, we have to face unknown obstacles, many emotional experiences, and life-changing habits, to get to where we need to be.'' - Nathan Ray Ortega

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Entrepreneurship

Meet Andrew Ragusa: The Real Estate Investor Who Wants To Give Back To People Around Him

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For many people, college is not the way to find financial freedom. Though we are pressured from a young age to attend college and get a good education to help get a better job in life, for some it is not the only pathway to success. This is what Andrew Ragusa discovered, perhaps a bit too late, when beginning his business career.
“I went to college because my parents and everyone else told me that was the right thing to do, and $60k in debt later as well as a bunch of promises by the college recruiter that they will help me get a job, I was a secretary in a physician’s office with a Master Degree in Health Care Administration making about 30k annually and was passed up on every job transfer I applied for.” Andrew recounts.
Soon after this, Andrew realized that his path had led him to a career he was not interested in, with few opportunities to increase his lot in life and use his degree to its fullest potential. He wanted to try and do something new so he decided to try real estate. He did not think that it would become much more than a side gig, but he soon realized that he could really make a living off of doing it.
“Once I got started in real estate and saw the potential; I never looked back. Throughout the growing pains of starting a business I had people supporting me and pushing me while I tried to find my place in the world.” Andrew explains.
Since beginning his career in real estate, Andrew has taken off. He now owns a real estate brokerage and a large fund that invests in real estate flips. He has been recognized in numerous ways for his success in the real estate industry.
“When I was working as a Realtor, I was having great success from my ability to sell property higher than most agents for sellers who hired me. On the buyer side, I was being so aggressive with the listing agent that my buyer clients were first in line all the time and were getting the homes they loved. At one point, my past clients and many of the doctors I used to work with started to reach out to me asking for me to find them investment properties. One day I woke up earlier than usual and I was laying in bed while an idea was forming, I realised instead of trying to find investments for everyone, I should just create a great investment!” Andrew states.
And create a great investment he did. Andrew’s fund has secured returns for his investors on an average of 20%, surpassing most other passive income investments. Because Andrew has achieved such massive success and recognition for his work, he plans on giving it back to others to help them achieve their own success.
“The fund has had an incredible unintended result for the people involved, not only was the investor benefiting remarkably but the contractors involved in the property renovations grew their businesses by a lot. My partner and I ended up employing over 25 families to get the work done to these houses.”
What inspired him to help people was his own success, but he also wanted to pay forward the kind of mentality and financial support that was provided to him when he wanted to begin his career.
“My goal is to provide over 1000 families with work and opportunity by 2025 after seeing the impact we had on the lives of these workers. I want to share the love that was given to me by so many loving people and create an abundant life for my circle and all those who become a part of this growing movement!” Andrew exclaims.
For his next project, Andrew hopes to grow both his real estate brokerage and the investment fund. The more properties he is able to acquire, the more work he can provide for people and share the wealth that he creates with everyone involved. His goal is to flip more than 25 houses a year, using the assets given to him to create more opportunities for both the people working on the homes and the families that trust him to grow their investments.
“The next big thing I am working on right now is the investment fund and growing the brokerage. The fund took some time to get started because what I am doing is pretty unique and hasn’t been done before as far as I know but we are ready to start. Normally when people invest in a RE fund they would receive monthly dividends from rent collections and a lump sum when the building is sold down the road. My fund is going to buy properties and renovate them to be resold on the market at a higher value and I want to pay the investors lump sums everytime a property sells. My goal is for the fund to be flipping so many houses that I am able to pay investors on a quarterly basis, all while providing work for more families with my businesses and all the other businesses we collaborate with.” Andrew says.
If you would like to learn more about Andrew’s goal to help 1000 families and his real estate businesses, you can check out his Instagram page here. Andrew was recently featured on Yahoo! Finance Top Entrepreneurs to Follow During COVID-19.
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Entrepreneurship

Why Travis Guterman Is Set to Be The Go To Manager For Entertainers and YouTubers

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Travis Guterman has always found immense satisfaction and gratification in helping his clients reach their financial goals. He is in the business management business, and acts essentially as a personal CFO for YouTubers, pro athletes, and entertainers. It truly is a dream scenario for Guterman, as his passions growing up were in both business and entertainment. In fact, he basically plays the real life role of the financial advisor for the character Vince in one of his favorite shows, Entourage. 

Growing up in Los Angeles, it did not come as a surprise to Guterman that he found his calling in the entertainment industry. He grew up in a Jewish household that placed importance on integrity, giving, and education. With such a positive upbringing, his work ethic and desire to be successful was strong from a young age. In high school, he spent his summers interning with Merrill Lynch and taking business classes at a local community college. 

His work ethic and passion for business carried over to his life after graduating from college, as he would work in finance and business for a major, well established firm and for a startup. The skills he learned at these two distinctly different ventures would help him immensely in his career, and his transition into working for celebrities was quick. In a very competitive industry, he was able to build a stable client list before the age of 30 whereas most of his competition was well into their 50s.

With all of the success he has had thus far, Guterman still values failure. He understands that setbacks are a part of life, and he believes that almost no one can say that they have had careers that have ended up exactly how they would have expected at the exact time they thought they would. With so much uncertainty in life, Guterman has always sought to improve himself and be better than he was the day before in order to be ready for anything life throws at him. He is adamant about sharing his successes, as he is always looking to inspire others and finds it important to let them know that failure is just as prevalent and important as success in life. 

Guterman has put his tremendous ability and work ethic to work, and coupled it with an ability to see an emerging digital market for what it truly is. While many others in his industry shy away from the digital industry and social media, he gravitates towards this demographic of clients and enjoys working with them, knowing that social media and YouTube are only just getting their start. He has always been able to capitalize on what life has thrown at him, and he has no signs of slowing down as he strives for greatness each and every day. 

 

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Entrepreneurship

Why Graham Byers Has Been Unemployable Since High School

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For Graham Byers, the idea was pretty simple. While money may not buy happiness, being broke doesn’t either. The only difference is that achieving financial freedom is far less stressful, so he set his mind to growing a business to the point where he could be free. Even at a young age, he knew he was never meant to have a normal desk job, or even a normal life for that matter.

As a kid, Byers would flip things on eBay and Craigslist to make money for himself on the side, opting to hustle on his own rather than spend time at a part time, minimum wage job. From that point on, his mind was set on finding a way to make a living out of working for himself. Once he saw how his family struggled with the 2008 recession, he knew it was time to take action.

During his time in college, he and his business partner would constantly scheme up ways to make money online, but did not gain any traction with anything. Once he graduated, however, things began to change. He found a breakthrough with an e-commerce business, and was able to scale it rather quickly to the point where he was able to exit the business after only a year of starting it. 

Having already sold his first company just a short time after graduating college, Byers quickly found himself with more freedom than he ever imagined. His instinct to work towards building a business for himself paid off big time, and he was quick to take advantage of his newfound freedom. He relocated to Puerto Rico with his business partner, where he still works on his two other businesses in real estate and e-commerce. 

While Byers is grateful for the dream life he is able to live today, it has certainly not come without sacrifices and mental toughness. In times when his business was not growing, he only worked harder. When it was not certain whether his venture would be a success or complete flop, he kept grinding. From the outside, his journey from college graduate to successful business owner seems pretty straightforward. But, it certainly did not come without his fair share of setbacks and bumps in the road. What kept him going was his constant desire to be free and live the life he wanted to live, and he has been able to see it come to fruition as a result. It may be easy to see his life and become envious, but understand one thing: Work as hard as Graham Byers did, and you can live your dream life too. 

 

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