Episode 006 – Richelle Shaw
Welcome to another episode of The HERO Show. I am your host Richard Matthews, (@AKATheAlchemist) and you are listening to episode #006 with Richelle Shaw – The Unstoppable Woman Who Defined Her Success and Built a Multi-Million Dollar Company.
Richelle is an Entrepreneur, Author, Speaker, and TV Personality. She’s the founder of MDE Nation, president of the National Association of Moms, creator of “The Million Dollar Equation.” and author the best selling book, also titled, “The Million Dollar Equation.”
Here’s just a taste of what we talked about today:
- How Richelle’s superpowers manifested at an early age but did not utilize them because of self-doubt.
- Three, and only three, things to grow your business.
- How she lost everything because of the tragedies on 9-11 and how she stood back up, stronger than ever, and reclaimed her multi-million business.
- The importance of your own definition of success.
- The truth behind her passion project, “The One Million Dollar Equation for Doctors.”
- Richelle reads the Bible at the start of her day, as it helps her stay focused.
- She ends the day by writing down all her accomplishments for that day and choose 5 things she is grateful for.
- She defines what success is for her.
Want to stay connected with Richelle? Please check out their social profiles below.
- Website: richelleshaw.com
- Youtube Channel: youtube.com/workzceo
- Twitter and Instagram Handle: @richelleshaw
- Facebook Page: facebook.com/richelle.shaw
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Richard Matthews 1:05
I’m here with Richelle Shaw from the MDE or Million Dollar Equation, which is a consulting firm that helps small businesses grow from wherever they are now to break that seven-figure ceiling that a lot of businesses want to crack, is that right?
Richelle Shaw 1:21
Richard Matthews 1:22
And my understanding is that you were, at one point in time, the only African-American woman who owned a public utility in the United States, which is a pretty cool thing.
Richelle Shaw 1:34
Yeah, well, I kind of fell into that. I was for almost 10 years. I owned the only public utility here in Las Vegas, Nevada but I had customers all over the world who use our service. So that was fun.
Richard Matthews 1:50
Yeah, and you were telling me before we got on the interview that your goal is that you don’t want to be the only African-American woman owner of large companies like that. You want to help women and people all over the world to be able to get to that point in their business.
Richelle Shaw 2:04
Absolutely. You know that the frustrating part is…well, it all happened when I was very young. It was about 20 years ago. It’s hard to even say, “It was 20 years ago.” But when it was happening, and when you’re in it, it’s fun to be the only one. But now that I have elevated, what I want for other people…life is not about just getting money. It’s about helping others and seeing everybody succeed. Because number one, I read the story about Oprah who talks about it wasn’t fun to be a millionaire by herself. So she gave her best friend a million dollars. Because you get tired of paying it. And once you get to that financial place, you start looking at other things and why I was so focused on just making money. You know, I built my first company over 40 million dollars. And that’s great however it doesn’t solve all the problems that you want. So now, I don’t want to be the only one I want to make sure that there are many more of them out there like me.
Richard Matthews 3:13
I’ve heard that the road to success can be a lonely path.
Richelle Shaw 3:18
But it definitely is lonely because of the people…really funny story real quick…before I became “the only,” I worked for the company for a couple of years. As the story was written in USA Today, Entrepreneurs, Smart Money, and everybody else. They love to tell this story that I was dating three men in three different states and I had a high phone bill. So I met this guy because every story with me starts with I met this guy and he said, “Come on Richelle. Come on and work for me. I did and I just kept growing the company. I ended up buying it from my boss. And all of the people who work trust me at the company. We’re supposed to…they were rooting for me and, “We can’t wait. We want you to own it.” But then when I owned it, none of them came with me. None of them stayed with me. All of my friends that I went to lunch with every day. Who I thought we were the same. We actually weren’t the same. They wanted to go to another company so that they could guarantee all of these things and I guess they really didn’t believe in me. So it was sad. But I mean, we’re friends now. But I didn’t really understand why they didn’t believe in me.
Richard Matthews 4:34
Yes, the difference in the entrepreneur mindset and the employee mindset. They’re not on the same path that you would be on.
Richelle Shaw 4:41
No, no, definitely not.
Richard Matthews 4:43
Why don’t you tell me a little bit about what you do now? So when we get into your hero story and get to see your journey, we have an idea. So we can see where you are now versus where you came from. What is it that you do now for people?
Richelle Shaw 4:54
Oh, awesome. So I do a couple of things. One of them is I’m definitely a writer because what ended up happening is people kept asking me, “Richelle, how are you able to build up to $40 million?” I lost it all, by the way, after 9/11 and the tragedies happened but then I rebuilt back my million dollar business in about five months. So I kept getting the story. “Well, how did you do that. Well, tell us about it.” So I decided to write it in books. So now I write books for entrepreneurs. I think I got one over here. This one is my latest one that’s out there. It is called The Million Dollar Equation. And then I have my current one which is Million Dollar Equation for Doctors. What I really want to do is help as many people as I can. My goal is 10,000 businesses all reaching the million-dollar level. That’s my first one. And then my second one will be a million businesses reaching the million dollar level because there’s a lot of things that happen once you get there. In my agency, what we do is we look at your business. What’s going on in your business, and then we plug all the holes. And I apply my Million Dollar Equation to your business because there are only three ways to grow. That’s it, three ways. First one is getting new customers. The second one is getting your existing customers to come back and spend more money. And then the third way is to get your existing customers to spend more while they’re with you. With every transaction. That’s it. There’s nothing else. So in my telephone business, I was consistently looking for other products and services that I could sell to my existing base and at the same time making sure that they were paying every month with the continuity which is great. And then the last one is adding new things. I was able to grow very quickly because I focused on only those three things. So that’s what I do for my clients now.
Richard Matthews 6:55
That’s awesome! So I love that by the way because the first time I heard that was from Jay Abraham in one of his preeminence. The only way three ways to grow a company. It’s a powerful thing when you focus on the things that matter; the things that move the dial.
Richelle Shaw 7:16
Things that are going to get you the money. Some of the things that I use every single day I work on and make sure that not only me and my company is growing but my clients’ companies are growing in the same way.
Richard Matthews 7:34
Yeah. So why don’t you tell me how you got started? I call this on the show “Your origin story. Every hero has one…where you started to realize that you were different. That maybe you had superpowers; that maybe you can use those to help other people; and you started to discover and develop the value that you bring to this world.
Richelle Shaw 7:55
Gosh, you know it happened really early. My mother is a waitress. My father was kind of entrepreneurial but never really got it right. My stepfather is an industrial realtor though, and he was very successful with real estate. But I knew from the very beginning that I was going to own a business. I call my teachers by the first name I never call them “Mrs. Tucker.” I was like, “Suzanne! Hello, what are we doing?” They just put their head down and, “Oh it’s Richelle, don’t worry about it.” But I asked a lot of questions. I was constantly going, “That doesn’t make sense to me. Show me how that makes sense and then we’ll go with your way.” Even though I was extremely young at the time. The first job I had was I worked for a management consulting firm and all I did was answer the phone for them and type their reports. They would bring in the problems and I would you know type what their answers were. So as I would read it, I go, “Of course this makes a lot of sense.” But what we found is that most businesses…when they get in the middle of it, they don’t get it. My second job was at a huge aerospace company while I was at UCLA. I worked in the accounts payable department and my job was…as long as I had a purchase order or bill of lighting and an invoice, I could push the button. Here I am 19 years old. I could push the button to make sure that they got paid. Like, how’s that work? You’re gonna let me, a part-time person push the button. I was happy to have a job while I was going to school. My best friend worked in the accounts receivable department. So, we’re sitting in the lunchroom and the vice president comes in and he says, “Well, hi. I haven’t met you yet.” And I said, “No you know what, I’m just a student and I’m here part-time working in accounts payable.” And he said, “Well, we’re happy to have you. Do you have any questions for me?” And I giggle and I said, “Yeah, I’ve got a question.” He said, “All right well I’m all open, how can I help you?”
“So here’s what I don’t understand…is that there are 15 people working in my department which is accounts payable. But there are only three people working in accounts receivable So can you tell me why you pay more people to pay out your money than you pay to collect your money? That doesn’t make sense to me.” And he looked at me and…”Oh, well that’s a good question.” Which is what people say when they don’t know the answer, right? And so you know, two weeks later, we all got laid off by the way. Me and my friends. And they flipped it so that the other 10 people that got to stay, went to accounts receivable. And the three people that got to stay, stayed in accounts payable. I was out of a job and my best friend was out of a job. She was pretty mad at me. But I realized that there was…
Richard Matthews 10:36
The danger of asking questions.
Richelle Shaw 10:54
…that as you say, I might have some superpowers. Now fast forward to probably two years later I was working for an entrepreneur who let me run his company. I wrote all of our ads. It was crazy! And we built his company in four months time from zero to over a million dollars. I went, “Okay he’s at work every day. I’m working for him and I’m still… How does this work?!” But I wasn’t confident enough to believe that I could do it on my own. I wrote a business plan. This is a really quick one too. I gave it to my best friend and it was all about…they have a company out there that’s 1-800-DENTIST. So I came up with 1-800-KIDCARE. You would call the number and we would give you where you could take your kid for childcare. The childcare centers would pay to be in the directory. I sent out a letter to all the daycare centers. Surveyed them. How did I do that before I knew what I was doing? I just came up with this brilliant idea to survey them. They told me how much they would pay. They told me that they couldn’t wait for a service like this and they asked to be included in the directory. Well, I was a little nervous about doing it myself, because, at this point, I’m only like 22. And I don’t think I can do this and I gave it to my best friend who was an early childhood education major. She graduated from college. She ended up working in the county of Riverside for the Riverside County. They came to her and said you know we need to figure out a way to get the information to parents about all of our childcare programs. And she, in her infinite wisdom, gave my business plan to the county. Well, they loved it and they funded it. They got Target. The Target Corporate -the “bullseye.” To give them half a million dollars to implement my plan. They didn’t hire me. They didn’t bring me in. They gave my best friend a job though. So she got a job making 40 something thousand. She calls me and says, “You won’t believe I got the job!” And I’m like, “What job?” She was like, “I gave them your plan and aren’t you excited for me? I’m making $40,000 a year now!” I go, “No! We could have got the half a million! Are you kidding me?!” At that point, I knew that I was on the right track but I wasn’t…still, I still…as crazy as this is…I doubted how brilliant…and what my superpowers, as you call them, really work.
Richard Matthews 13:44
Yeah, that’s pretty incredible that you would have such a…I just see the struggle. You know you’ve got something but you haven’t quite got the confidence to put that together. And just connect them. That’s really powerful, I guess. I love how you talked about questioning people. Questioning the common wisdom and it reminded me of a story when I was 14 or 15 years old. I was in an accounting class in high school. The way they teach accounting is not real-world accounting. It’s theoretical accounting.
Richelle Shaw 14:23
Richard Matthews 14:26
The teacher was defining assets. He said something along the lines of, “Your home is an asset” and I raised my hand in class. I was like, “If your home is an asset, why does it cost you money every month?” I was like, “That sounds like a liability, man.” I argued with my teacher with it for weeks and he was like, “No, they teach you that your house is an asset.” And I was like, “The equity might be an asset but on your expense statement. It’s coming out of your money. It’s taking money out your pocket every month. That makes it a liability in my book.” I was like, “It’s the bank’s asset. They’re making money on you every month.
Richelle Shaw 15:03
That’s right. And it doesn’t really turn into an asset until you get to keep it. Until you get that deed, as far as I’m concerned. But so many folks they think that that’s the only asset that you’re ever going to have. And that’s how you’re going to retire. So you have to consider it…this asset. well really, really quick is that after I lost it I went back to UNLV because I thought that maybe it was because I didn’t have an MBA. And all this self doubt stuff again. I was in an accounting class and I was the only one to get 100% on a test because the answer was a negative net receivable. The professor said, “Richelle, how did you know that?” I said, “Well, because I owned a business that had a negative net receivable! That’s how.” I know that everything doesn’t line up exactly how you say in theory. That yes, it sounds like if you are making money. But I also ran a multi-million dollar business that had a loss every year. So the key is, as long as you have cash flow, you can always be open. But it’s how much you get to take; how much you get to keep; there are so many other things in real life, practicality -that happens, that they don’t teach in college. And I was constantly frustrated throughout that whole process.
Richard Matthews 16:29
So the story of how you have discovered your superpowers, despite the years of self-doubt and struggle is really interesting. I’m gonna move on a little bit and talk about the tools that you use now. The things that you’ve discovered over those years of struggle. In The HERO Show we talk about…maybe you have a big magical hammer like Thor or a bulletproof vest like your neighborhood police officer. Maybe you just love to use Evernote. Maybe you’ve got some psychological tools that you use with your business. What are the tools that you use to either run your business or help your clients run theirs on a regular basis?
Richelle Shaw 17:06
Got it. Well, because the story starts with all of that self-doubt, I had to fix that piece in my head. It was something that I work on still, to this day. I put on what I call my mental armor. I start every single morning with the same way. That is, number one I read the Bible. I happen to be a Christian and I believe that the things that are in the Bible are the things that are going to help me stay focused because when you go from a 27 year old that’s dating three men in three different states to now owning a $40 million company being sued by WorldCom for over a million dollars to all of these things…you start going, “Whoa, hold on a second. How did I get here?” I knew I was smart but where are my powers? So I I needed to focus on those things. I definitely start with that and at the end of every day I write down all of my accomplishments for that day. Because as an entrepreneur, your list is never-ending. We all start with lists and we’ve got tasks. And then we’ve got projects. And then we’ve got projects upon tasks. And I happen to be an entrepreneurial ADD, as what I call it. So I’m constantly running 250 different things. And at the end of the day, I never feel accomplished because that list is never-ending. So I write down all that I accomplished for the day I write down five things that I was grateful for the day because sometimes I’m just grateful for gas in my car because as entrepreneurs everything is always at risk. For our kids’ college, our retirement, everything! I’m making sure that we stay grateful. And then I write down the certain things that made me uncomfortable for the day because I think that those are important too. What is it that creates this angsty inside of me? And then, how did I deal with it? Did I push through it? Did I not push through it? So that every day I’m trying to get better. And that one tool has really changed my life. Because for years, I just always felt unaccomplished even at the $40 million level. I wanted to get to 100 million dollars. I wanted to get to a billion dollars. It was never enough. I have a daughter and now my daughter comes first. I mean, everything that I do is, “You know what? Hey, sorry. I’m going to either be late or you know.” But what I teach her is to start off the day being grateful. End of the day, reviewing your accomplishments and just competing with yourself, not with anybody else. Is this okay with you? Did what you do make sense? Did you affect another person’s life? And then how can we get better tomorrow?
Richard Matthews 20:14
Yeah, I really love that. One of the things you mentioned is, we accomplish all these things but your list is never-ending. I know I feel that. I don’t do that at the end of the day where I write down my accomplishments, something that I should probably start doing. But I know I’ll go through and accomplish a whole bunch of things. And every time I knock off a task and get a project done, I’ve got 10 more that are on my list. My wife is always asking me like, “So when are you going to be done.” And I’m like, “I don’t think I’m ever going to be done, ever.” Because there are just more things I want to do.
Richelle Shaw 20:51
it seems that way and you know, my pastor said something one day. It really rocked me. He said, “Success and failure feel the same way.” I said, “No, that’s not true.” I was ready to raise my hand again when he said, “Hear me out.” I said, “Okay. Okay, tell me why that? is Because I know success. And I know when I lost it all, it felt dramatically different.” He said, “Then tell me how it felt when you reached $10 million in revenue.” And I said, “I don’t remember.” He said, “Okay. Tell me how it felt when you reached 40.” “Yeah, I don’t remember.” He said, “And you also told me, Richelle, that back in the day when you reached a million, you didn’t even know you had reached it. One day you just decided to run a report. Is that true?” I said, “That’s true.” He said, “So at the end of the day if you don’t create your own joy and happiness and understand what those accomplishments are, it will feel exactly the same. Because at 10 million, you’ll feel like you should’ve reached 20. And you will kick yourself for that. And at 20 million, you’ll be mad that you didn’t reach a hundred. So you’ll kick yourself for that.” And when I thought back and processed that, it was exactly what was happening. I never felt that it was enough. And even now, as I’m rebuilding my agency and getting to the levels that I want to compare them to building my telephone business. There were days when I felt unaccomplished and that, “Who wants to interview me, really?” I do a financial segment on our local Fox 5 here on the Money Honey. I’m on twice a month. I am so accomplished. I have number one best selling books. I’ve helped an OB-GYN build his practice from 384,000 to 1.2 million in nine months. Who wakes up and says, “I can’t wait to have a pap smear?!” Nobody! But just using all of the things that I know how to do, I’ve helped them do that. But I still felt as if I wasn’t accomplished because success and failure really do feel the same way! Unless we create something to make them feel different.
Richard Matthews 23:20
Which is really powerful because it brings to light that it’s all here. What your doing is not going to make you feel different. One of my mentors always used to say, “Between stimulus and response, there’s a choice.” The way that you feel is a choice that you make. If your stimulus is failure or success, the response that you have to that is something that you have to choose. Something you have to create which is what I think what you were saying.
Richelle Shaw 23:59
Richard Matthews 24:01
You’re not going to just automatically have a joyful response to success, because there’s that choice in the middle. And if you’re not choosing the response, you’re going to end up having the default. The response you have to stimulus of anything with work. It’s traditionally failure because, you know, you go multiple failures and then success. That’s how success works. Your mind is trained to respond with the same feelings to success as you have to failure. So, unless you change that choice, you’re going to have the same unfulfilled feelings towards your accomplishments.
Richelle Shaw 24:39
Yes, yes. And so. So one of the other tools that I use all the time too is that I define what success is to me. Success is being able to take my kid every day to school and pick her up from school every single day. I don’t really travel to speak anymore. I live in a town where everybody comes to. So I speak on a ton of stages because they’re here in Las Vegas. And I can still take her to school every day and pick her up so that she knows that she’s very important. and she’s a priority in my life. It makes some people uncomfortable because they’re like, “Why? Well, you should be this and that…” I know what I should be. And I also know what defines success for me. Success isn’t being 120 pounds for me either, obviously. But that doesn’t mean that I’m not cute. That just means that it’s not a success for me. Success for me is being able to be good to people, to affect people. With my daughter, one of the conversations that we have all the time is not “What do you want to do in your life?” because she sees me and she’s like, “Oh, I want to be on TV and I want to write books and I want everybody to see me on the internet.” And I’m like, “Yeah NO! You know, why don’t you tell me what problem you want to solve. Why don’t you tell me that? And as soon as you tell me that, then we’ll create this way of how to solve the problems.” So as I thought about you know, what problem do I want to solve that’s where all these other things came. That’s how I became famous or whatever you want to call it. But it’s not because I wanted to become famous. Because, here’s what I found out very very early. It’s that, you become a famous way before you become rich. Now, you’ve got all these eyes on you and then this race to wear better clothes and to carry more expensive bags. For women, it’s definitely crazy about all of this success. The people who come out of it. From the very first article that was written about me, I got two letters from jail. Two guys who said, “Oh, I see that you don’t have a ring on your finger. Well, I’m in for my nonviolent offense.” Is fame really what I want? I had to come back to, “Ya know? No.” What I’d like is to have a different framework for my success.
Richard Matthews 27:16
Yeah and I really love when you talk about success as something that you define. One of the things that I always tell myself, my kids, and even my wife and anyone I talked to, “He who controls the definition controls the argument.”
Richelle Shaw 27:30
Richard Matthews 27:31
And when it comes to things like, “How you feel about your success and how you feel about yourself…”
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“He who controls the definition controls the argument.”
Richelle Shaw 28:29
Richard Matthews 28:30
When it comes to things like how you feel about your success and how you feel about yourself…when you control your own definitions, and you don’t let the world define things for you… Then you have a much better understanding of where you are and where you want to go. You mentioned it yourself. You want to take your daughter to school every day. For me, I want to be able to have lunch with my kids every day. I’ve got a little boy and a little girl. I made that commitment before I had children with my wife. I was like I’m gonna be here for lunch every day. That’s my goal. Every once in a while I’ve got something I got to do over lunch. I think over the last six years I’ve missed like five or six lunches. But that’s my goal. Everything I’ve done from jobs, business, where I work and what I do has always, you know. My definition of success is, “I get to have lunch with my wife and my kids.”
Richelle Shaw 29:27
I love that.
Richard Matthews 29:27
Yeah. I don’t make a million dollars yet. I don’t have fancy cars and cool jewelry and boats and all that other cool like trappings of success. It may be, someday, but if I don’t get to have lunch with my kids then having all those things wouldn’t matter. Because I know what successes are and you do too. I think that’s a really powerful thing.
Richelle Shaw 29:49
Yeah, I flew all over the world. Teaching. Speaking. All kinds of stuff. Then I realized, “Wait a minute, my kid loves my mom more than she loves me.” That she’s used to spending more time with her. And I said, “Oh, this is wrong. No, no, you know, this little thing is my joy.” She’s why I’m doing it. So, why am I not spending time with her? And I really had to sit down and think about that. So even if I don’t pick her up from school, it’s a big thing now. She says, “What’s going on? Mommy’s not here.” And so I had to have that conversation with her that, “If somebody else picks you up, it doesn’t mean that I’m hurt or something’s wrong. It just means that you know, somebody else is going to pick you up.” So I have to tell her or leave a note. I’ll go to school and leave a note for her so that she knows everything’s okay. “So and so is going to pick you up.” But as you said, maybe five or six times in the last…well, she’s 10 so she’s in fourth grade. So you know, I’ve been there every single day.
Richard Matthews 30:57
Yeah, and it’s one of those things like, when you make a decision like that…when you decide what success is. It defines a lot of things. I didn’t say I wanted to have dinner with my kids every day. It was lunch. That defined a lot of things, right? So, like, my kids are homeschooled because if they’re going to a public school, I can’t have lunch with them. Which means I need to be able to take care of my family in such a way that my wife can stay home and actually do that. I need to have working conditions where I can take lunch off. Making a decision like that changes a lot of how you make decisions based on your business. If you are defining success as, “I want to make this certain amount of money or you want to have this certain thing.” It’s going to affect the decisions you make.
Richelle Shaw 31:52
One of the other big pieces of my tool belt is…a lot of folks…when they’re not where we are…they’re like, “Well, tell me the tool. Don’t tell me it’s on my mind.” So here’s one of the tools that I also use. It’s that no matter what, I go into every single business and create systems that work without me. That when I am not sitting in front of my computer, I’m still making money. I start with, “Okay, let’s break the business down into three sections: before they meet me, while they’re doing business with me, and then after they meet me. How can I make sure that they are loving me and telling everybody what an amazing person I am? Telling everybody what an amazing experience they had with our company and sharing all of their results. What am I doing? So I break down those three segments and once a week I work on each one of the segments so that either I’m adding another email sequence, I’m filming testimonials with my clients or I am making sure that the experience that they have, while they’re working with us, makes a whole lot of sense. So if you’re really anxious to build that million dollar business and if the money is your goal, then you want to make sure that you are looking at systems in your business, your practice, your firm, whatever you call it, and that you are getting automatic payments somewhere. So that you don’t have to be the one doing it. As long as it has to touch somebody’s hands, it’s going to limit how much money you get to take home. Not how much you make, because you can always hire more people to do it. But how much you get to take home and be able to be at home and at lunch with your kids every day.
Richard Matthews 33:41
Yeah, and I really love the whole idea of automation. It’s one of you know, it’s what I built my business on. It is helping people build automation into their business. If a customer buys from you. How can you have a system that automatically sends them a postcard that’s handwritten? It says thank you, but it’s all automated. Like you can do things like that nowadays. I do solopreneur work. I don’t have a team. I outsource things occasionally when I need to get something done. But because I do one on one coaching, part of the work involved is like, I need to schedule appointments with people. I have them fill out an application ahead of time. You build the whole system in place where they get reminded to fill out the application three or four times and even like text messages to them with half the application filled out with the information that I have already. After they fill out the application, it follows up with them three or four times to make sure that they get onto my calendar and after they’ve got to my calendar, they get a bunch of personal messages from me that’s filled in with the information they’ve given. You build those systems once and you never have to touch them again. Now I don’t have to use my own effort to scale the customer acquisition part of my business because you built the systems first. It’s a front-loaded effort. It takes a lot of thought and a lot of practice. Then you have to go on from there.
Richelle Shaw 35:09
Right. But so many people don’t want to do that. They just want to go and get. Go and get a customer and keep going but what I tell them is that without a system, you don’t have a saleable business. One of the things, why I’m where I am, is that I was able to sell all three of the businesses that I own. It’s paying me in dividends. That’s my retirement. That’s the asset that I have as we talked about assets. Without the systems, you’ll never be able to sell the business. You just have a glorified job.
Richard Matthews 35:42
Richelle Shaw 35:43
But what the system, people want it. They want to know that your acquisition process is automated and it’s easier to sell.
Richard Matthews 35:51
Absolutely. So let’s move on a little bit to your mission with The MDE. I know you talked about it a little bit with the wanting to get to 10,000 people at seven figures. But just like Spiderman fights to save New York or Batman fights to save Gotham or Google fights to index all the information of the entire world so you can search from it from your phone. Tell us more about your mission. Dive into it a little bit and why you want to accomplish that 10,000 and what you think it’s going to do to the world when you accomplish that goal.
Richelle Shaw 36:21
Yeah. Part of my passion projects is a couple of things. For almost two and a half years, I was the president of the National Association for Moms in Business. Working for that organization, being their president, representing them in Congress, in meetings with the President of the United States and all of the world…I found out that if we lift up a woman, and a mom if we can lift her family and change her family perspective. After we change the family, then we’re now changing communities. And as we change communities, we change the world. It really struck me and it made me say, “Okay, so what can I do personally to make sure that we can change the world?” So one of my things is not only entrepreneurship. I think that everybody risking their retirement, their kids, their wife being able to stay home, all of that, that they should be able to generate the seven figures that I generated. So that’s what I wrote the books for. But now, at the age that I am, I’ve had some people not make it. Two of my best friends passed away from cancer, recently. My father passed away over a year and a half ago when he came home from the hospital. He came home to early. He called 911 and he was able to get to the door to allow the fire department to come in but he passed away right there. With them trying to resuscitate him. After the funeral at my mother’s house. She announced to us that she found a lump in her breast. And we’ve been on that journey with her. She’s doing much better now. But it has shocked me as I sat in doctor’s practice after doctor’s practice…and I noticed that the doctor feels compelled to see as many patients as they can because that’s the only way that they know how to grow their practice. What happens is that they’re not giving the best service. They’re just not doing it. That compelled me to write the latest book: The Million Dollar Equation for doctors and to go in to help them build better practices so that they can be better doctors and to give better care. Right now, I don’t think that they’re giving better care. I think that they’re just trying to check it off their list. The majority of them, in the in the appointments that I’ve been to with family members and with friends during all of their cancer journeys have been, “Okay well what does it say? -and they’re just checking the items off and they’re not really listening to what’s going on.” The effect of all of that is several of my physician’s practices have exploded because when the patient gets there, they get unlimited time with the doctor. They are feeling better, They’re doing all the things that they need to do to really help. I think if we can fix our broken healthcare right now, we can really change the world. We can affect so many additional people and I’m super passionate about it right now. As well as, of course, helping entrepreneurs. But I think that I put out so much information on that. If you just read the green books, The Million Dollar Equation you can build your own million dollar-business. But this one, with the doctors? Nobody teaches them how to handle their practice.
Richard Matthews 40:25
You said something that I think is really key. If people can catch it…the doctors are struggling to provide the best care because at the back of their mind they’re thinking, “I need to get to the next patient. I need to grow my business.” Because they don’t have the systems in place to grow their business and to have predictable regular growth and profits and revenues. That’s always going to be at the forefront of their mind and it gets in the way of them providing their value. I think that’s the same for almost any entrepreneur. It doesn’t matter what your business is. If your thought process is…as you land a client, before you even get to deliver value to them, your thought is, “I need to make sure I get to the next client because this one’s not going to pay the bills by themselves.” So when you’re trying to deliver value to them, you’ve got a screen in front of you. You’re not able to be there at present. I think that’s a really powerful point when you realize that you need to get your systems taken care of. So that you can provide whatever value it is, and particularly important in the healthcare industry because you’re talking about people’s lives. If you’re providing that value to the highest level possible then you need to have the rest of your business taken care of. So that you can be present for them.
Richelle Shaw 41:58
Yeah, It’s so important. That’s why I said I’m just super passionate about it. I think you can tell. That I’m like, “Oh!” Because it doesn’t have to be this way! And when I see that the people are waiting an hour and a half to be seen. That’s ridiculous! Who wants to come back to you? When every time I come, that I’ve made you a priority but you haven’t made me a priority. Yes, we’ve been helping a lot of practices. But I think in the end, what we’ve really done is helped so many patients. We’ve helped so many patients feel better and get better because they feel as if their doctor is listening to them. They feel as if, “Okay, finally, finally! I’m going to be able to feel better.”
Richard Matthews 42:41
It’s a ripple effect for your business.
Richelle Shaw 42:45
Richard Matthews 42:46
Awesome. Well, thank you for sharing your mission. I really enjoy what it is that you’re trying to do. And I love to hear those stories. Talk a little bit about your personal heroes. People who have been an influence in your life? You know I say Frodo had Gandalf, Luke had Obi Wan Kenobi and Robert Kiyosaki had his Rich Dad. Who are your heroes? Were they real-life mentors? Were the other speakers or authors? Peers that were just years ahead of you? And how important were they to what you’ve accomplished so far?
Richelle Shaw 43:17
Yeah. Well, you know, my heroes who are those who believed in me before I believed in myself. We talked about that head thing that I had going on. But my very first job at the consulting firm, they told me, “You know, what Richelle? You’re special and as soon as you believe it, things will change for you.” It took me 20 years but I definitely had that. My very first boss at the tax firm, he just let me do my thing and we grew up very quickly. My boss at the telephone company before I bought it from him. He sat there and he said, “Richelle, I got something to tell you.” He was he was older at the time. He was in his late 50s. And here I am 27 now and he says, “Here’s the deal. I’m gonna let you do anything you want. Just don’t put me out of business.” And all I heard was, you can do anything you want. And I never thought of, just don’t put me out of business. And I never really think through how difficult it was, but he never gave me “Here’s what you need to do”. He just said, “I believe in you.” And so I have learned so much from that. If you talk to any employees who ever worked for me, they all say, “Richelle, you believed in me before I believed in myself.” So that’s how I pay it forward. But they were definitely my heroes, my mentors, he was my Obi Wan Kenobi as I could call him and go, “Ooh what?! I screwed up!” And he’s like, “It’s okay you’re gonna screw up. Let’s work yourself out of it. Let’s let’s fix it for you.” So I had some definite, infinite wisdom folks who just helped me and helped me. Another one of them was was Reginald Lewis. I read a book where he talked about using TLC Beatrice. He was the first African-American on the stock exchange, that whole thing. He said, “One of the problems that most people have is that they want to create it from scratch.” He told me to just go buy it. Since then, I’ve purchased four different businesses based on that advice. Instead of trying to reinvent the wheel. I just go in and buy a business that already has flowing cash. Because I understand the operation. I understand the systems that you talked about. Now we can keep things going and they were definitely a huge influence. They helped me give back because now I know what to tell folks when they come to me. I used to say, “I don’t know.” Now I go, “Okay. Here’s the deal. You can do this. You can definitely get to where you want.” Do I still coach? Absolutely. There are only a select few that get to coach with me just because my agency blew up the “Done For You” side of it. But I definitely still do one-on-ones with folks just to get them past that hump. And let them know that there is light at the end of the tunnel.
Richard Matthews 46:23
Awesome. I want to bring it home a little bit for our listeners. Talk about your guiding principles. What are the top one or two principles or actions that you use regularly today that contribute to the success and the influence that you enjoy? Maybe the ones that you wish you had known when you first started out on your Hero’s Journey?
Richelle Shaw 46:45
Perfect. My number one is to do the right thing at all times um. When you happen to be a superpower, the theme of your show. You get a lot of opportunities. Some of them are right and some of them are wrong. And I spent some time doing some things that weren’t right. They made a ton of money. But what I found was number one, they’re not sustainable. I spent a whole lot of time and energy doing things that weren’t right instead of really focusing all of my skills on doing what’s right. When you do that, everything else comes to you. And the second one is, understand that there is a higher power. I don’t care what you decide to call him or her or the universe, whichever. I happen to know that my higher power comes from God and Jesus Christ and that he died for me and to know that he died for me so that I could do something in my life. That’s where I started to work on you know, what problems are you solving and even in all of my books, I start out with how to build a really great business that grows quickly is to solve enough problems. What’s your great solution? Your 1GS, what is it? What problem are you solving for the world? Because when you do that, people throw money at you. You don’t have to worry about, charging the right amount or getting the next product. It’s just making sure that you can solve their problems and they can get there.
Richard Matthews 48:22
Absolutely. I love that: The One Great Solution. One of the mentors that I follow, he talks about “You’re only goal in business is to find a group of people who have a problem and develop an elegant solution for them.” And that’s it. That’s business.
Richelle Shaw 48:42
People want to complicate it. We all say it in different ways. But what it comes down to it is as long as you’re solving their problem, they will pay you.
Richard Matthews 48:52
Richelle Shaw 48:52
It’s when we stop solving the problem is when they go, “Wait a minute, hold on. I don’t need to pay you anymore.” Same way with telephone business. Same way with my doctors. It’s not that you have to get them well but you definitely have to listen to them and assess what’s going on in their business so that you can change their life.
Richard Matthews 49:11
Absolutely. So last little thing. I do this every time. It’s something I call The Hero Challenge and it’s really simple. Do you know one person, just one person that you could introduce to me that you think their story would be a good fit for our show?
Richelle Shaw 49:29
Oh. I probably know 15. I’ll get at least a couple of them to talk to you so that we can make sure that they can tell their hero story and help change the world. Because I love your mission. I love what you’re doing. Just keep doing it. It matters. It matters to everybody who’s out there that was like me. I wish I had a show like this that I can listen to, that I can watch, that I could see, that I should just take the leap. Because I would have done it 10 years earlier and not falling into it. But there’s an opportunity and I think you’re doing justice for our community. I can’t wait.
Richard Matthews 50:09
Awesome. Well, thank you for that. I tell a lot of people who interview with me, the origin story for this show. It was like 2007 one time, and I was listening to a speaker. And I swear, he pointed right to me in the audience of like, 10,000 people. And he was like, “Your kids are going to have a hero someday. It damn well, better be you.” I thought about that for the longest time. I realized that if you were going to be a hero to your kids, they were going to choose who their influences are. If you’re not worthy of having influence, they’re going to choose someone else. That goes for everyone in your life. Whether that’s your customers, or your children, or the people you have relationships with, if you’re not worthy of having influence in someone’s life, they’re not going to choose you to be that influence. They’re going to someone else. So that’s sort of where my whole, you know…I got into the entrepreneur career…15 or 17 years, I don’t even know how long ago it was…because of someone pointing at me and saying, “Hey! You’ve got to be a hero!” So that’s where the name of the show came from. So thank you so much for coming on the show today, Richelle. Last thing, where can people find you if they want to read your book, The Million Dollar Equation or The Million Dollar Equation for Doctors, or they want to find out about some of the things that you teach…where can they find you? Where can they find your books? Let us know where we can do that.
Richelle Shaw 51:37
Awesome. So I’m really easy to find as long as you spell my name, right. So it is R-I-C-H-E-L-L-E. Shaw. S-H-A-W.com so you can go to richelleshaw.com. You can also go to The MDE. The agency. If you’d like us to help you with your practice, with your with your business. There’s an application there because I also use an automated application process. To make sure that we’re the right fit. Because if it’s not, then I don’t want to waste your time either. You can grab my books on Amazon because they are there too. You can go to the official Richelle Shaw on Facebook. That’s there. You can tweet at me @RichelleShaw. It’s just all the same thing. But even if you spell it wrong, I think you do kind of find me somewhere in the mix. But I would love to help whoever it is become their own hero to their children and to themselves. Because that’s what I needed, to become me. Because I didn’t really believe I was a hero until now. I believe that I’m a hero. I believe that I am here to affect lives and affect change. And so I can’t wait to help you if that sounds good to you.
Richard Matthews 52:46
Awesome. Thank you for joining me on the show.
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What Is The Hero Show?
A peak behind the masks of modern day super heroes. What makes them tick? What are their super powers? Their worst enemies? What's their kryptonite? And who are their personal heroes? Find out by listening now