How to Start a Business (and Grow it to a $1 Million Dollar Company)
Anybody, can call themselves a great entrepreneur but. Not many can afford a bad-boy like this. Today. We're, gonna be interviewing a guy named Joe you guys saw him on the previous, episode where we interviewed, him about his coffee shop today. We. Came back we're. Gonna show you something else. Hmm. Can. You imagine being like taller than four feet getting out of the squat well. If. You want to start a successful business today's. Episode is gonna be for you. Customers. Tell you what you want you know and if you suck they're not gonna buy something for me it's pretty simple so you just try to provide value to our customers rather than providing value for yourself as. Long as you have customers, go into your website clicking on that send your item or by button and, you'll be in business you know it doesn't really matter where you're located one. Of our philosophies is to be able to provide fast, service. To our customers to then make lifetime, customers, we want to make sure that customers are back for life, so. When something sells both, from the inventory assembled with the parts and ship it out within 24 hours yeah, 24, hours it's not. Joe. Went from working completely, on his own to hiring over 35, employees. That's. Nuts I have no idea how that he did this we're literally in the middle of nowhere. If. You're looking to do the same thing stick, around we're, gonna give you a step-by-step process, of how Joe went from zero to hero. Alright, guys this is where the magic happens check this out. There. Is the man the myth the legend, well I'm Joe welcome to my crib, yes. MTV, Cribs I love event tell. Us about yourself Joe. I found. In this company Joe's gaming electronics we buy sell and repair of brand-name electronics. So. Electronics. What. Led you down this path like any great business idea it's all by mistake of course I had a Gamecube, and my buddy gave it to me and I. Tried to sell it actually game Game, Stop and they, will only offered me five bucks yeah so I knew for a fact that I could get more for it so. When home made an Amazon account with my parents account information of course I was 16 at the time and, I went ahead and sold it overnight and I just got hooked on the feeling and being able to sell something once you sell fourth I sold it for about $45, geez I went to the shipping and I paid about like 30 bucks in shipping yeah said basically gonna make my money it was addicted, to the fact that I could sell something and that online e-commerce, my, doors always open okay and I love waking up to getting how much in payment, notifications, I love that wait what years is I mean Gamecube that's like prehistoric yeah. Basically it's nearly dinosaur, age but, for me it was in 2012, I believe thousand twelve so that's when I started it in my bedroom but, that's mainly where it came from we just went on kegs 'less in the middle tonight bought, a bunch of Nintendo. Stuff and just, sold it on Amazon and before you knew it within about two years I was able to quit my job I was able to drop. Out of college I don't have a college degree or anything and I need to really need it to be able to invest more time my business that's mainly what I wanted to do and that's what I've been doing yes so I think it's a huge misconception to say that college is bad it's, bad for people that want to be entrepreneurs because, entrepreneurs. Is selling things in order to sell things it's, not sitting in class selling. Things is to be able to be a merchant buy something for less sell it for more gibbehhhhh's, to. Be able to sell something for a greater amount you, know being able to be a merchant you have to practice, on, real. Life through. In Craigslist through, Ritz lists through Facebook. All that stuff and you gotta learn to negotiate gotta, learn to sell things and you can't learn that in a class you know entrepreneurship, classes are a bunch of because they're, really you can't you can't change this you know you have be able to do it and I think being. Able to understand, that you're never gonna get where you want to be you're just constantly trying to get better I think that's just good mindset with selling.
Could. You give us a little tour of your place I'm looking around and I'm just my eyes are just exploding, cuz there's so much to look at there's, a lot to look out and it's pretty simple when you think of it if you look from the very top it's just a couple different departments when we look here is the water shipping cells mm-hmm, through these shipping cells we should about 30,000 packages and we do that by, making. Sure everything's in place and I'll show you guys that inventory really quickly okay yeah so everything built out where we stand everything is on wheels okay, no, sitting no sitting, not acceptable okay perfect. You guys got to like stand up toilet or something no working on that what. You see is a bunch of reports for earbuds headphones. Speakers. Along with accessories, and other inventory, that's been repaired or well as well and you. See our stations here as you can see our station this is my station right here this, is always changing as you can see I got my big they're on a hook I got my laptop everything, in front of me making, everything really simple and easy to use check. This out if, you pay absolutely love it and over here we have more and more parts so we have 80,000, components, inventory, and we have about 20 100, SKUs and we're basically, gonna be about around 5,000, SKU store for about 5,000 unique things, the best thing about is if you start organized, right away it's much easier to go forward that way but, if you have to work backwards like we did we didn't start recognized right we started like doing the you know easiest, simplest way to do it without organizing, but if you start recognized right and, you stay organized so much easier to maintain that way so, we're paying for our sins right now I just organizing the last couple yeah still, still. You, go from selling, you know GameCubes. On craigslist when, when is the light bulb go off in your head that you're like okay maybe this could be a business like did you have a goal in mind you're, like okay wait. A second I probably, shouldn't be going to college like when did that switch happen for you so trying to be a practical person you know I was doing everything. On the side you know I was going to college I was doing high school things like that was working construction but. Before I even started this you know I started. You know mowing lawns as a kid I used to sell Krispy Kreme doughnuts at school so you're always hustle I've always been selling things I just didn't know that it was called entrepreneurship, I was just selling things and making money you know that was kind of like oh this is cool I can do this now I can buy a pack of gum you know and so I would always do things like that and I. Didn't know as a viable option until, more and more people decided, to do things and what, are the repairs came from as we saw an opportunity and we fixed the game Xbox, 360, that's a first for pass the first repair we ever did and, we fixed the Xbox 360, the red ring of death it was we got pallets of that stuff and my parents, pallets.
Of Broken xbox yeah we did yeah when, we're still working my parents garage when. The inventory wasn't, so clean looking yeah but we threw a pallet in there and we were fixing xbox there's different things Nintendo, stuff so, we were you know we tried to be an opportunistic and see what's on the market what's broken, and what can we fix that's really what it comes down to customers. Tell you what they want you know if you suck they're not gonna buy something it's pretty simple so you just try to provide value to our customers, rather than providing value for yourself you, know if you focus more about what the customers want less about what you want you're gonna have a viable business because. You're actually focusing on people that are willing to spend money in your company so it's really important. So. Joe we're basically in the middle of nowhere where. Are we actually basically in the middle of nowhere it's just about right we're in Mable Falls Washington that's town of about 300, people 300. Yeah and it's in this specific town kendall has about 3,000, but this specific city has about 300 people you employ like 50% about, 10% of it yeah. This. Location, matter that's my question so we don't have any walk-ins so it's not important for emic commerce company it's really important, that you just have a location, that's, need your team and a location, that you, can expand into and that's most important it doesn't matter to have a huge office space or a small office space or if it's nice or not you can make it as nice as you want and the, location doesn't really matter as long as you have customers, going to your website clicking on that send your item or by button then you'll be in business you know it doesn't really matter where you're located so. You can see all the stations a little bit different right yeah but the idea is everyone's, waiting the computers in front of you you, have all the tools in front of you you're making a small seller just to be able to do everything we, have all the parts here as you can see these, are all just beat sex parts right all these different parts more parts more parts all these different components there's all the ports that we source directly from China and, then when we get them from China we assemble. Them onto unit just to be able to save cost so, here just kind of like an average. Repair. Station right here every, one station is a little bit different so. Every employee has their like own customized, station, that they've open based off their heightened needs and what they're working on yep oh shard one has a surface it's connected to our website connected to everything each individual, technician talks directly to the customer so they're their own customer, service representative, so we have 18, or so technicians I believe. In, this room, here a lot of the things we do is we practice just-in-time manufacturing so, when something sells both, from the inventory assembler, with the parts and ship it out within 24 hours yeah 24, hours that's nuts and, then over here just our customer service area we, have three different stations here this is where all the packages come in that all are customer centered from around the world they, come in through here they, get inventory and then put into two different rooms of our earbud smart electrum headphone speaker room and that's, where the repairs are started and the technician starts working his magic the, idea is to be able to centralize. All communication. To make sure that we, can actually track it you know we want to make sure that we respond to customers within 24, hours I want to make sure that customer never reaches out to us after one message and we want to make sure that 75%. So we drive all these different metrics just to make sure that our customers after one response and respond back to us because we fulfilled, all the different questions at the end all right so we're here with Matt and Matt is in charge of customer, service, and kind of now operations, management stuff like we're, doing a lot of writing and creative work so now, I'm gonna ask you a question I want you to be completely honest with me how's it like working for Joe.
There's. Two things that get on my nerves I've worked, here almost three years and a three months ago I started. Working remotely but like as I have, spent time away like I miss it every time I come back it's really cool the energy is awesome, and just like I really. Like organizational, I don't know if that's because I've spent time, working here or that's because I actually do, but, it's really nice to come to a place where everything is in its place and organized, and like there's. A flow and things are moving and so for the most part it's just nice to be here. It's. Your garbage cans all have you know they're all in wheels everything you. Know let's say you wanted to learn how to tighten this garbage bag you ain't no it's very simple a scale but, there's stupid stuff but things that people actually ask me we haven't heard people a lot I mean look you get so many questions asked again and again system, look at this yeah it's, like a little even. They're freaking trash, bags have assistive. Processes. Process processes right going, through here a bunch of parts that we're always replacing, these are very common things that break all the time we're. Running pretty low on some of the stuff but we have a batch coming in from China because of the system that we have in place it's called Kanban, cards and, inside each box you see right here there's a little card. The reorder point so, once we get past inventory, you open that bag and inside there is a card inside, the card is a barcode and said the barcode you scan the barcode send it to the vendor. Vendor sends, it out you get it in you never run out of stock that's kind of what I've been working on the last year and a half is all these barcodes I'm already at 2,100. Barcodes and that's, all had to come down from raw 2100, but. We have another about two thousand to, two to three thousand barcodes I gotta finish a but if you look over here there's, kind of more of the parts that we've been selling more of a lot of fitbit screens a lot of motherboards, batteries, things like that things, that are breaking that people need and want to make sure that we have them my question is okay you're running let's say you're running out of fitbit. Screen how, does someone know well see you have a hundred products yeah at. The twenty five point you're, gonna have to reorder because it takes you two weeks to get it okay and so based off the usage rate you put the certain amount of stock that you think you need for that time the lead time to get it so, that way you're never on a stock okay. In theory it's an awesome thing but it's all about resetting, your Kanban so if you have a hundred and you put at twenty five and before. You got the product you ran out of stock you got to reset, it at forty next time that way you don't run out of stock so you reorder sooner. Who. Is your inspiration for, all this like this system we walked around your business we saw how organized it is like how where'd you get this from yeah, so when we originally started the garage we had no idea we're doing we're still don't know what we're doing but we take our influence, from different countries and what we do is practice lean and lean, we, got introduced to lean the last three years through. Paul acres and to secondly and that's a resource that we you all, listened to it before anybody comes to our company we have to listen to that book yes for sure you know you listen to them actually free, on YouTube so absolutely. Take a look bikers Awful's it offers all his books and we were able to learn about the, magic, of lean constant. Improvement, and eliminating, waste and that's, what we try to focus on every single day how do we how. Do we remove all the crap that happens in our company and how do we improve all the things that just happened yesterday and the idea is every single day when you come in here something's, gonna be different something's gonna be better I think the easiest, way to deter people that are not willing to learn is to give them a book oh I'm. Having this and come back listen to this yeah and I can tell based off how quickly they come back to move their response and how well they're gonna be in the company they take somebody to come back they're not gonna be a good fit if they come back in four and a half hours because that's how long the book is you know that they're excited about the company well and they're willing to dissect, the information, and I've had people that said no I won't listen to this I want a job I mean this is not a job that's an opportunity for you to grow it's, our opportunity for you to get better opportunity, for you to be able to learn the stuff they implement, it in your life and some, people are not willing to learn and get better you can't belong in our, culture, right that's, golden guys.
So. We're here with David an employee, and a close friend of Joe's. What. Is it mostly you enjoy about working here. Probably. Working. On different, different. Products, like every. Day is kind of different yeah, because my main focus is kind, of figuring. Out new products, what we can bring on board that. Way we. Can continue, bringing on more and more products and then teaching other guys to kind of take, that place yeah and I kind of move forward you know always, something to do right oh yeah you don't like doing the same thing over and over, um I do a lot of that yeah still do support you, know if we get too busy like. Right, just now we had Black Friday Cyber, Monday I have, to I still, have to you. Know carry the load a little bit sure and I, mean with your guys's like response, and shipping times it, seems pretty quiet already I'm guessing you guys took care of those I do everything within 24, hours it's not Cyber Monday 24. Hours. That's. Unheard of. On. Here you guys see the TV every. Morning see if you guys came her in the morning you could see how everything, runs but, there's, a huge list of different inventory that gets added by David is this, the McDonald's thing where you yeah, exactly you, have an app and. On the app you go ahead and a checkoff, or mark what you're working on yeah and so this, generally tells us what's needed to be done that day and, basically, what's known as Yaak because whatever is in stock to check it off and then it gets shipped out and then, 99.9. Percent of the time we ship out a product. Within one day so. Okay so one day so. No one else ideas, make sure that everything's always going out and, we're. Pretty, good they were point zero seven in terms of like out of a hundred only, point zero seven orders don't go out within one day and. That's that's a pretty good pretty, good metric we'll, go through a shipping, area here and this, world with ship water products along with all the inventory that we have on hand and right.
Here We have a pretty robust security system about 25 different candidates, cameras just to make sure we can stay on top of everything like 130, cameras yeah a couple security cameras ah yeah. Yeah. I'll, catch up once okay sounds good. So. Inside this room a lot, of different, things happen this is where all new projects, come to one centralized, area along with all defective boards go into one area mm-hmm so over here we have different things that we know go ahead and repurpose, we, have specialists. That go through them and figure out what's wrong with them and, we're also working on repairing a much Apple watch screens we have tons. Of huge boxes of Apple watch screens that we're trying to refurbish right now and that, just I saw based off our principal is trying to be a purpose as much stuff as possible and I guess that you have to do that you might not be able to like fix them but you try to figure out in this room a lot of it can be fixed yeah but kinda that's kind of what makes us special so we're always looking for the next thing and also trying to improve what we already work on that you. Got. A lot of space man you're definitely, using it well that's, the idea man we try to maximize so that's our media room right here we have our YouTube station if you guys want to see how, a proper. YouTube station is done go very easy you scan this it tells you exactly how to operate the whole thing where the camera is the camera is right here teaches, you how to use it properly along with the script and how you need to use it all the equipment that you need and when we make videos we have our TV right here it links up with that thing right there so, you're looking if you need that script of anything is right in front of you we have our podcast stuff in here as well along with a little HD machine the, instructions are created by each individual person that's doing it so if somebody wants to make an improvement I want to make sure that nobody ever asked me this question and you're making youtube video here we take that YouTube video connect it to our QR code then when your skin and on your phone it takes to the YouTube video explaining, the steps of how to work on that thing and so as you guys can see the tools are right here on the side I mean a small little improvement just solar cell. Magnetic yeah and then if you want to power the station on you just come underneath there hit the power button and everything should come on at the same time and, that's kind of idea right making these efficiencies, super, important, because that's how you arrive, successful. Word right yeah in, terms of like mindset, of starting a business before before, they even think about an idea or a concept that they want to pursue. What. Needs to be in their head before they start over is you've got to understand the consumer what are they willing to pay for and how much are they willing to pay for it and. Once you determine that number it's gonna be a lot easier for you to be able to know what, value you have in the marketplace and you have to stay. In as long as possible and make long-term decisions so, if you're gonna be able to take care of your customers if you're gonna be able to build really good processes, then, you're gonna be able to be around for a long time, but if you're gonna be making a bunch of shortcuts and you're not gonna be able to be focusing on quality but it's gonna fall apart pretty easy yeah. So you're always thinking long term I mean even with your clients or customers you're thinking, okay if I fix this I do this if I provide this service well. They couldn't be come running back to me five years later right, yeah so well you know one of our flops philosophies. Is to be able to provide fast. Service. To our customers to then make lifetime, customers, we want to make sure that customers are back for life and, I think the last most important thing is to have a really good team have, people that you're willing to invest time into because, they're the ones they're gonna make all the work happen, you, got to make sure that they care about what they do and they're willing to be able to do it for whatever you're willing to pay them it's, really important, to make sure that you have a team you can't do anything by yourself you.
Know And it's, really difficult to, delegate, things because, we all want to be able to control you know we're control freak sets up the people are founders because, we started it we know how it feels like and want to make sure that yeah, we want to make sure each customer has the same experience now how was Willie, I'm gonna be able to take care of this customer better than I can and it's to be able to do your best to be able to delegate, those things and then to be able to trust and that they're gonna do a good job and guess what they're gonna make mistakes but you do as well but, if you're doing 50 different tasks, and you're, putting about 5% of effort into all of them that's not gonna work out as well as someone doing one task and putting, all the reference into it it's still gonna be a better result if you build a really good team and you can delegate all your tasks to them. But. When you're starting this business was. It hard to basically. Eliminate, your pride and actually, start, you know getting feedback, from other people yeah. I think getting feedback is crucial yeah but I think actually, under. Saying that it's feedback, and not someone, trying, to punish you or put you down as different you know it's mindset so, being able to have an improvement mindset you understand that everything we do in today is crap and tomorrow it's gonna be better and you got to be okay with understanding that and then, being able to empower your employees to be able to make those improvements is, even. Better because you, get feedback from them but when they actually improve, the things that are bad you don't have to give me a feedback they can just make it better and we always. I love wise counsel right just proverbs talks about this off and you know you need a wise counselor and your life and so I always look at people have been in the industry I ask them questions, I really, try to do my best to, learn from the people that been here and done that how, do you hire your first person that's that's someone that's something that so, much people struggle with how. Are your first person's hard, but it's also easy because. If you have enough business where you have to hire more people, you just give them a task that you can't handle it yourself so. You know it is easy but. It's also hard to be able to manage and how. Do you then teach. Some what you do something, that you know how to do better Yeah right and that's. Always difficult but, I hired them based out of a need I don't hire them because I was trying to scale up I hired them because I had too much work and I. Needed people to help and I hired all my friends yeah and that's, what end up doing is. It good working with your friends or is it tough it's tough and a good you know I have to fire some more friends yeah that's tough, but, at the same time you know when you bring them into the company you tell them this is a performance-based business, if. You don't perform you cannot be part of the team this is a family but it's also a team yeah if the. Left, tackle on a football team is letting, the quarterback get sacked, that left tackle won't have a job exactly, and we can see the film because we see results and we track everything and so it's really important, to make sure that you're not just producing for. The team mm-hmm and if you do produce for the team you can part of the family but if you don't produce for the team there's gonna be a second-stringer that comes in there gets more practice and looking to be a first finger right away. Guys. Thank you so much for watching this video if you stuck through to the end make sure to LIKE subscribe. Maybe. Drop a comment down below the. Previous, video actually, where we interviewed Joe with his coffee shop if your interview if you're interested, in something like that it'll will be down below in the description. So you can go and watch that also, make sure to like that video and yeah.