Q&A with Bianca Juárez Olthoff: The Art of Starting Your Business

Q&A with Bianca Juárez Olthoff: The Art of Starting Your Business

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our guest for today is a world-class leader a fantastic communicator and uh you started many different organizations bianca juarez although the founding pastor you and your husband of the father's house in orange county and you also started uh in his love several years ago in the name of love a prison initiative you also have a podcast called let's go there we're going there we're going there where you definitely go there and you got a fantastic book as well uh how to have your life not suck which is really kind of a good goal i want to keep it simple i want the title to explain everything that that's probably a good good goal in life it's great to have you on with us and uh i've admired your leadership uh for so many years and i love the fact that you not only lead something but you started a couple of organizations and i want to talk to you a little bit about about that you started your most recent one a little bit later in life i imagine there's some people that are wondering when is the right time to start what is it that cued you and matt that this was a great time to start what you lead so let me first say that i love this podcast avid listener to this podcast i can markedly look back at where i was at certain seasons or places or even countries where i'd be running and listening to this podcast so i am an avid podcast listener of yours and now i get to be on the show so thank you for having me i am obsessed with the show so i think the beginning stages of starting anything always fill with a a discontent like there's something that is missing or something's wrong or if i could dare to say this i think i might be able to do this better that kind of quiet discontent within within turns into something that fosters a sense of ideas what can i do how can i make this how can go further faster and farther um with with this thing that i'm bringing to the market so i for me it's always started with this sense of disconnect a discontent and trying to provide something a felt need for somebody in my world i like that i can imagine there are a lot of people listening right now that want to start something maybe a youtube channel or maybe a non-profit or maybe a business i think there would be some discontent and i also like the fact that you recognize and it's not even prideful to say we can do it better than what anybody else is doing around so i i like that insight what if you just have an idea but you don't know if you're the right person to to carry out the idea how how would a leader know that maybe i am the right person this is the right idea this is the right time so let's back this up to about 2015 2015 i realized i was i think i labeled this a quarter life crisis i was 25 years old i was a twixtor meaning i moved back in with my parents i had finished grad school and i just was lost i didn't know what to do and going through that season and really finding what resources were out there what tools were out there and stumbled my way into my 30s to kind of figure out who am i what am i about so i realized that there's this gap this vacuum of resources that were simple i didn't want to come out with an almanac of how to survive your 20s but i'm like wait i think there are some resources that i can provide for those that experience a quarter life crisis or those feeling like they had a failure to launch in their 20s and now they're in the 30s trying to figure out life so for me it was okay i have these resources that i know i can create let me just put my toe in the water let me see if this resonates with people so instead of hey let me start an ngo i started seeding content out through social media so i really would create kind of if i could say bootleg and bugetto that's bougie and ghetto all at the same time these boujetto resources to see hey are people biting so i i think i'm a little bit more cautious and i love research i love data i love marketing so for me i wanted to be strategic if i'm gonna invest time energy and effort into creating these resources let me make sure that there's this need so i just started seeding the water and i'm like okay if people if this is a need people will respond slowly but surely we started getting people who would send us their email which this is super important in marketing and data acquisition they would let us know stations and seasons of their life they would take quizzes and so from then i realized okay there's this ground swell of predominantly women predominantly millennials that wanted these resources and so for me i was just like this is this is where i feel i could add value this is where i feel like i could speak in to the next generation's life and i've always been passionate about the next generation i just want to create tools and be a leader that i felt like i never had that mentor so when i you know the book title is how to have your life not suck it was it is created for millennials who really feel like i feel a little lost and i don't want to come in as like the guru up in the sky but more alongside is a guide let's go on this adventure together let me tell you what i've learned and there was a need yeah there was and i want to go deeper because that kind of raises some questions why in the world did you have the confidence how did you know you could do it i imagine there's a lot of leaders right now that maybe hopefully a lot of younger ones too that see a need find a discontent think they could do something better but there probably would have been a lot of internal reasons or voices telling you why you're not the right person right and yet for some reason you overcame that and attempted something that others might say maybe you're too young or whatever what was what was the internal um whatever it is consumption yes give me like 18 names and i couldn't come up with one but what what was that in you how did you find it you know i'm gonna be really honest it has to i think i can whittle it back to being 10 years old i am from los angeles and to be specific east los angeles aka the ghetto so when we talk about these obstacles when we talk about what made you what gave you what allowed you what empowered you i think it started at that young age i'm a first generation american i couldn't read write or spell at the age of 12 not because i didn't have the resources i just really struggled academically i was morbidly obese i weighed more than my father and i think statisticians would put me in a category highest prone to failure uh repeating the generational cycles of everyone living in the concrete jungle and really perpetuating the plight of many women of color and i just from a very young age i i i'm a woman of faith i have a faith background so i will say this cautiously but i just had a conversation with myself and with god and i just said if you give me words i will give you my voice and there has been and there will be many people who will say you can't you shouldn't you wouldn't you're not allowed and to me this plight as a 10 year old of saying i can and i will and i'll wave at you in my rear-view mirror that has never left me since a scrappy kid from the ghetto i it took a lot to overcome and i think that that that struggle as a as an adolescent that struggles as a teen that struggle in my 20s really gave me the gumption the unction if it can say the cajones to say no no i'm going to put my foot out there i'm going to take this step and listen if it's not for me the doors are not going to open but if it is for me there is no man on earth that can stop me well that that's pretty dramatic story to have been 12 years old and not able to read or write and a lot of pretty strong reasons of why you probably shouldn't succeed right and i think that probably everybody while their excuses or limitations or challenges may or may not be as dramatic i think we all have our resume of why we aren't ready or we aren't good enough what would you say to someone else out there who's kind of looking over the edge right now saying i'd like to start something but i'm not sure i'm whatever smart enough old enough educated enough what advice would you give to them if they don't have that same gumption that you had you know as someone who was illiterate for a number of years i realized the power of your story and if you aren't careful if you don't write your story someone else will well and so it doesn't matter i mean someone listening in the midwest who is highly educated and lives in affluent area will not resonate with my story but they'll resonate with maybe feeling under qualified maybe they'll feel under resourced maybe they feel overlooked if we allow other people to determine our destiny to determine our future then we've handed over the pen of our story in the pen of our life to them and to me i'm like steal it back your story can only be written by you so if you have it doesn't matter our background so clearly there's so many people listening to this podcast that will not resonate with my story but they're the hurdles in life are meant to be scaled and then told because they're inspiration for other people well your story inspires me and i've got a ton of respect for you as a leader in fact um i was honored to help invite you to be a part of the global leadership summit brother you opened that door and i am running through okay you're gonna run through and leave smoke behind if you do and so we're excited to hear from you this august and i think about your story and in the world we live in today right now it is there are more starting opportunities right than there were ever before 10 years ago and so that that's uh good and anytime you start anything and you started a lot you're kind of a marketing expert you started a couple of non-profits and you speak and write all over the nation and the world there are probably some basics on no matter what you start if it's a for-profit business if it's a non-profit if it's a online social media ministry or platform whatever what would you say come to mind as the top priorities of what how a leader wants to think and what they want to do in the early stages of the start you know i i love three i love the number three so i'm just gonna whittle this down to like the three most important things that i've walked away with and learned over the last 10 years of starting things and i would say the first one is you have got to have a conviction that this is what you are meant to do and i use that word loosely because meant to do feels like ominous it feels really big but you just have that that discontent and that you feel like you have the solution to somebody's problem and uh so that conviction because that conviction is going to carry you through when you're tired that conviction is going to carry you through when you don't have the finances or the resource that conviction is going to carry you through to work hours because you can't hire that other staff member that conviction is the thing that gets you up in the morning and it's the thing that keeps you up at night that conviction that i have the answer i have a solution i have a plan i have a resource i have a business i have a dream that's going to help somebody live better that conviction is gonna be the thing that's gonna give you the gasoline to carry and to move forward i think the second thing is know your weaknesses so i am a dreamer i am a visionary i'm a motivator if you like the movie mean girls i feel like i can say i'm a pusher and i'm a good pusher where i lack is structure and um you know i could see where we're going i just don't know how we're gonna get there so surround yourself with people who help lift your weaknesses so for me even before there was ever in the name of love before there was a prison initiative before there was an ngo before there was a church there was my husband and i'm mexican so i love to have parties i wear four inch high heels i love lots of makeup and my husband is of german descent he's from the midwest shout out to the midwest and if you notice the germans said germans are organized a good wasted time good western numbers good was a strategy and so i was that was like the sexiest thing about him like my family cannot show up anywhere on time because latinos are late okay we just can't and i married a man who made up for a lot of my deficits so even in in the name of love guess who helped build out the business plan even with the ngo and when we started when we started our church it was matt who said i think that we're supposed to do this and i said i think you're crazy i don't think we're supposed to do this uh but between us both if we can use an allegorical image of he's the brain i'm the heart both are needed and so surround yourself with people who kind of make up for areas that you lack or maybe areas of of maybe a deficit and then the third is this is where whether you have a faith background or not i think that that it coincides with conviction but it's that inner faith it's it's this sense of hope i'm going to outwork what i feel called to whether it's starting a business whether it's being an entrepreneur whether it's launching an online platform i am convinced that this is going to work if failure is not an option failure will never be and maybe this is the scrappy kid in me but i'm like we will see this out till the very end and i think with those three values you know it's that conviction it's that sense of surrounding yourself where you lack and a sense of hope faith these words that might feel uh different to those without a faith background i think that we can understand them in the natural of like wait i have this this confidence yeah this is gonna work what i love about your answers bianca is is like you said if your husband's the range you're the heart and and you're really bringing a lot of heart to this and you know different leaders are gonna have different strengths and so if i ask about startup a lot of people are going to say you got to have your values and you can have it all printed out you got to have this strategy and you actually really do but without what you're talking about whenever the road gets tough people are going to quit and so you do need that and so just kind of recapping what you said the conviction matters the third thing you said is you know the the faith the ultimate belief and the and the willingness to outwork anyone the the second thing you said is is absolutely completely important is having the right people around you when you're looking for the right leaders early in a startup what's interesting is you may not have the money to pay them they may not want to come on and say you're a startup i believe in you a lot of people want to go for you know let's go work for somewhere that's more established and we know he's going to be here for five years from now twofold question is what are you looking for in the people and how do you attract them to something that's not yet built so uh i love leading with vision and because i'm a visionary that's a little bit easier and i am a lover of words so i can paint a picture and i love to say i pay people an opportunity i may not be able to pay people with like large financial donations or acquiring people through large paychecks but i'd love to pay people an opportunity but to answer that question specifically one of the things that both matt and i are are really passionate about is in casting vision and looking for people that we want to attract it's i think it was abraham lincoln when he built his team he brought in people that were completely the antithesis of him and i never want to be like an echo chamber of thought or think like hey my way is the only way so i'm looking for people who think differently than me um that are not afraid to push back i know that you're not a fan of enneagram but i am and uh my wing is a challenger so i'm a seven i love a good party my wing is an eight i'm a challenger so i don't mind i don't mind a challenge i want people to push me to think differently i want people to stretch me i want people i need in building a team i want someone that's going to be like absolutely with you ride or die we could do this let's take the hill and then i need that skeptic that's going to balance this out well let's talk about the practical you know let's talk about how much it's going to cost us let's talk a timeline so i think when we build a team when i build a team i want to make sure that it's super diverse that it's not just the same type of person um wanting the same type of outcomes i want it to be robust and look different and i'm not okay with pushing back yeah and i think that's great because a lot of people would think the opposite too they they want to get people that think just like them and that's a challenge because then if you if you're not around people that will push back occasionally then you're going to get yourself in a lot of trouble i imagine that when you started your prison initiative you recognize pretty quickly that without systems things are going to fall apart right yeah at what point did you recognize we need to start putting some systems in place and could you give me some real kind of practical advice to someone who's starting something where do we start and even learning to think and organize systematically absolutely so when we started i feel like i kind of like fell into the prison initiative i i knew that there were those that were incarcerated that needed resources for success why is our attrition rate so high when people are getting uh let out of prison the recidivism is so high because there's no pathway for people to kind of get well again and so um started had a women's conference on a whim i i just sensed that i was supposed to go into prisons didn't know how and um as luck would have it i received an email in my inbox from a warden that happened to hear me at a conference in texas and said hey if you're ever in texas if you're ever in lubbock texas we'd love to have you and i said i'm going to lubbock in three weeks let's make this happen well i'm the visionary i'm the dreamer i'm like hey we just show up it'll be fine you know it'll fix itself and i had a staff member shout out to chelsea bayhem a staff member that really said okay well we need to have a timeline we need to have a structure what's the flow when i have those boundaries then i'm like okay this is what i see this is the timeline let's make this happen so when to use that as a case study we're we're going in with convicted felons and murderers if we don't have a game plan this can go so you know and so the warden really trusted us and allowed us to have full run of not just it ended up being the women were so excited that we had to have two conferences that day and we realized really quick this is our system this is our flow this is our structure here's the outcome what is this going to cost us what do we need to get do to get there and um i know this feels very basic but when those systems and structures are in place then the water can flow through the channel and that's exactly what we want to happen so we knew immediately i'm the visionary but someone had to put things in order and put things on the timeline and i think from the very beginning we knew that we needed to start with that yeah most of the time not all the time but most the time the people that do have the courage to start something do lean more toward the visionary side and the good thing is they can sell like you can sell they can cast vision they can attract people the downside is if they don't surround themselves with the right types of people then then you don't have the structure to sustain it and that's why there's a lot of like hey we start and we die within two years and that can be a real problem as we're talking i'm just thinking about the person who might be listening and saying well that's great because you had someone alongside of you what about those of us that are starting and don't i just want to speak to them because i didn't always have a mat and they'd always have a chelsea i didn't always have a vanessa there's people on team anyone from our staff at the father's house so in those cases i go back to conviction if you know that you know that you know you're supposed to start this business launch this podcast start a blog no one's going to create structure and no one's going to make your dream happen except you so how convicted are you to do this i fully admit structure and numbers are not my strength but it will become my strength until someone else can come and take it to the place it should be so i think sometimes we abdicate our responsibility to start something because oh we don't have a team or we don't have an assistant we don't have this i'm the visionary but i don't have someone to outwork this baby boo you are your own engine all right you are your rudder you are your engine you are the the sail you are everything so i just want to kind of remove any excuses that maybe people might have think well i don't have that become that and then as it grows the right people will latch on to the vision and if it's meant to be it will carry on so you probably had some assumptions going into starting something that were not exactly right what surprised you um or something you learned along the way that you didn't expect the list is long but let me start with this one the fact that i'm on a leadership podcast and speaking at gls is so humbling because i wouldn't i'm not the quintessential leader you know i look at quite honestly i look at you i look at some of these other people and so let me just push you for fun and say what is the quiz quintessential leader if you're not oh well there you go right no no this is important no this is important i know you are you i know you're you know i look at i look you know what it is i look at everything i'm not i'm not gonna surrender i'm not gonna surrender here great because they're there so many people out there this may be the most hated argument i've ever had and we're laughing there are so many people out there that are gonna say that they're not that and i'm gonna look on you and say you're a world class leader so if you are the normal traditional leader then you may not be world class let's not try to be what somebody else is and that's why you're on this today is because you showed up with you and i don't want anybody out there to give me that excuse which is i'm not what somebody else is you'd be who you are that's what else i'm pushing you because we would rather follow people who are always real than always right you do listen you know and but the beautiful thing about this not but and and i will say you are absolutely right what i've come to realize is that i am a leader yes but i feel like i have been the reluctant leader and the beautiful thing that i'm learning now many of the best ones are right yes that's what i'm realizing i think i actually think i'm going to talk about this at gls anyone who's anyone who's like really confident they have it all together probably has a lot to learn so for everybody out there right now who feels reluctant or feels like you're not the quintessential leader maybe you're the right one for the job oh yes yes and this is why this is my favorite podcast so you give wind in my head thank you now i'm just i'm i'm just a big believer in what you do and i'd love to before we wrap up too um again your book is really good and i'll hold it up for the camera so people can see um how to have your life not suck becoming today who you want to be tomorrow and i just want to say thank you for um bringing the title of your podcast is we're going we're going there you just do that you just you just you just go there and you say things that sometimes other people wouldn't say and you're also able to do things a lot of other leaders wouldn't do and so i hope that there's someone out there listening and wouldn't it be amazing if two years from now we got an email or we're out somewhere and we met someone who said i listened to that podcast and because of it i started something i love that so to whoever is on the edge what i don't want you to do because you are a salesperson is i don't want you to talk someone to starting the wrong thing at the wrong time right because that happens all the time but i want you just to think about someone listening right now that probably does have an idea that's worthy of doing and even though they don't feel completely ready then they're not because you they don't know everything that they need to know and that's that's part of it talk to that person and give them the courage to do what um they may not quite have the courage to do your voice is unique and there's only one you and i sounds like an after-school special or some cliche meme that we see on instagram but the truth of the matter is that if you have been uniquely fashioned with your voice and your story your skill your gumption why let someone else take what you were supposed to do and make what you were supposed to make i just i can't help but feel if we are gifted which i believe we are if we are crafted which i believe we are for a specific purpose which i believe we are i never want someone to miss out on the fullness of what they could have been or what their business could have been what their book or their podcast could have been i would rather those listening take that that shot take that step have the the conviction to do what they feel like they've been called to do then miss out and watch a ship sail with someone else doing what they was birthed in them months years or decades before i just can't help but speak to those listening and saying you never know unless you try and you have to do it and you have to fail repeatedly because what we haven't addressed is the topic of like you will fail you will fail gloriously but the victor is the one who keeps back up and keeps going i think that's the one thing that i have i have that sense of conviction i'm resilient and to the victor goes to spoils never give up well amy i love you and matt and appreciate you and i'm looking forward to having you this year at the global leadership summit for those in our podcast if you hear me mention that a lot it's because i'm incredibly passionate about this it's uh in my opinion the most effective leadership conference in the world and i'll be talking again this year and helping a leadership role if you would like to be a part uh there's hundreds and hundreds of sites around the us and then there's hundreds of sites in 61 different languages so bianca you are going to be translating 61 different languages i'm excited if you want to discount a ticket you can go to global leadership summit and type in cglp21 cglp 21 and again thank you for uh being on today you've been a fantastic guest i've enjoyed debating with you on that one and uh in the next month's episode we're going to talk about leading the most difficult person you have to lead how do you lead yourself i want to tell you a big thank you just for recommending this podcast to your friends posting on social media if you tag bianca if you tag me we may repost you yes and if you are listing wherever you do please hit subscribe or follow thank you for being a part of our leadership community we say it all the time and you can help me out with this because be yourself why because people would rather follow someone who is always real and someone who is always right boom [Music]

2021-07-03 00:18

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