James Moffat is a Scottish born entrepreneur living in Switzerland. After 20 years in the corporate world and thinking, ‘Is this it?’ he found himself on the outside, looking for a new adventure. On his journey to gain his own clarity and purpose, he built a business helping entrepreneurs better align to their own purpose whilst boosting their visibility.
Website for Visibility Impact:
00:28 – Who and what are the typical problems you help your clients solve?
01:28 – What invisible business owners should think about to get more visibility
03:45 – Are business owners reluctant to be seen?
05:45 – Do expat business owners face issues being seen?
11:22 – What are small businesses looking for in a mentor or coach?
18:21 – What were the challenges when starting up the business?
23:33 – The challenges faced when looking for clarity
28:41 – Support on the entrepreneurial journey and its importance
32:57 – Learnings when setting up a business
Click to Read Full Transcript...
So, what good is it if you’re trying to set up a business and you’re invisible? No one can find you, no one can understand what your message is. And, even more importantly, what’s the point of having a business without a clear purpose? Both for the business itself and for your own life. Well, my next guest helps business owners solve these two problems, visibility and purpose. He lives in Bern, in Switzerland, originally comes from Edinburgh in Scotland and his name is James Moffat and we had a great conversation and let’s have a listen.
Alex: James, great to have you on the show.
James: Yes, you’re welcome Alex, thanks.
Alex: Fantastic. Listen, it’s great to have another business coach and mentor on the show. Really great to have that and listen we’ll go back and hear about your story in a moment. But, I just really want to start off and ask you know, today, who are you typically, working with? I mean who are you typically helping and what are the big problems that your clients are facing?
Who and what are the typical problems you help your clients solve?
James: Yes. So, I typically work with business owners, I mean they come in various shapes and sizes and different stages of their journey and aspire entrepreneurs. So, typically they lack clarity and a sense of purpose and struggling with some visibility. Which, we all know is much needed now because you need to promote yourself and being a service or a product, I mean you need to get that out there. So, these are the people I help I mean with their challenges.
Alex: I mean, so you’ve got you know Mrs Invisible business owner today. So, you know she’s complaining that no-one sees her. How do you get someone like that to tell the world, ‘Look, here I am, you know here’s my message?’ What do they need to be thinking about and doing to get more visibility?
What invisible business owners should think about to get more visibility
James: Well, first of all, we do a discovery call with them to find out what their challenges are. What is it that they’ve got? What type of business they are. And then, I don’t know, I mean creating visibility is one thing, but we want to create it in the right places where their target audience are. So, we typically find out who their avatar, their target audience is, where do they hang out? And then look at their mechanism and the best use of promoting them on the different types of social media. Or, wherever it may be, to promote them within their groups. So, I mean maybe we can use an example to actually clarify this part?
James: So, if there’s a business owner, I don’t know, who is a nutritionist or a coach that talks about nutritional values, so food or something. Then, we need to look at how do they get their message out there? Who is the target audience, is it Mothers, is it families? Is it other business owners? And then once we’ve discussed with them kind of their audience, then we look where do they hang out? So, if it’s food and value, maybe it’s geared around children as well. So, would it be Mothers at schools, where do they hang out? How do you get in front of those? Is it business owners? Is it a workplace? You want to have a healthier workplace environment and nutritional value of food and introduce it to the workplace. So, then add target audience could be the work.
So, then we look at who it is that they’re targeting and then how do we get in front of these to create that visibility? And then, obviously then, not just with that, so it could be social media it could be groups, forums. School events, businesses, corporate environment and then how do we actually expose them in front of these audiences?
Alex: I mean are, is there something different with business owners today versus the past? Because I mean are business owners reluctant to be seen? Or, is that down to their own individual character and personality? Because I suppose there’s a part of it is about being having the courage to put yourself out there as you personally, as well as your business? Is that part of it, this reluctance to be seen?
Are business owners reluctant to be seen?
James: Yes, I think in the past we very much relied on, I mean it was more meeting by acquaintance, or introduced by other people, referral. But, there’s so much information now and the way that we communicate is more online. There’s still the offline aspect, but because online and using social media is a very relevant part of our lives. So, we should embrace that as well.
So, there’s business owners that maybe are more old school and they don’t believe in that, so they’ll never embrace technology to enhance the way that they communicate. Which can make it challenging as well, because there’s a lot of groups and a lot of information out there, you just need to get out there yourself. So they kind of hide in the background, behind the scenes and they don’t really put themselves forward.
So, what we introduce is something to actually help expose that, help them actually address their fear, why aren’t they doing that? Is it something that they’re fearing because they haven’t grown up with it and it’s something going to be new to them? Or, is it something that they don’t believe is the right mechanism that they should be using?
So, this all kind of comes out from the initial discovery call that we have with them, to find out what it is that they’re doing at the moment. How do they target their audience, and is it effective, is it working? Why isn’t it working? And then we look at different mechanisms on to enhance that and to make it better.
Alex: I mean you’re an expat, you’re up in Bern, in Switzerland. And, I suppose expats have another problem as well, is that you know within the country they’re living in, which is not their home country. They also have a degree of invisibility don’t they? Because they’re not necessarily part of the local groups and societies, etc. So do you find that there are some particular issues that you know expat business owners have when it comes to being seen?
Do expat business owners face issues being seen because they’re an expat?
James: Oh absolutely. I mean it comes down to many different things. I mean we look at language as an example. I mean Switzerland is quite challenging in the way that there’s four official languages, depending on where you live. So, if you’re not speaking a local language, that could be an inhibitor as well. And also, maybe culturally different, and so you’re not necessarily familiar with the way that business is done here.
So, and then who is it that you’re actually targeting? So, you can be living in a country, but you’re not necessarily targeting the people in the country. Or, you’re targeting a community of people within the country.
As an example, as an expat I feel more comfortable actually speaking English. Although I do speak some German, it’s not good enough to do it in a business way. I can get by, but I’m much more comfortable speaking English. Even with an expat that’s not a native English-speaker, I’ll feel more comfortable and vice-versa. So, I tend to pick the groups of people that I want to work with, that by default are English speaking. So even though I’m living in Switzerland, by default I’m looking that up. So,other people might feel the same, or different parts of Switzerland that they feel more comfortable speaking.
So, language is definitely an inhibitor and can be a barrier as an expat living in Switzerland. It doesn’t mean that some people haven’t adopted the language and are very conversant with it and they’re comfortable doing it in multiple languages. But, for others, you can actually segment yourself into a smaller group, because you only want to do it in one language.
Alex: Yes, I mean this is exactly why I set up this podcast myself. I mean I was very clear for me that, you know I speak French, I speak Italian. But, I was going to work in English and the expat community globally was the one that I wanted to talk with. And that’s why I set up this podcast, so that was my answer to the problems you just described there. [Laugh] And I think it’s very important to be really, you know to play to your strengths and if language isn’t one of them, that you want to stick with a particular language, it’s very important as an expat not to just go after a market which you can’t connect with, you don’t relate with…
James: Yes, just, excuse me, to add another thing to that actually. A lot of the people don’t just want to restrict themselves to the market in Switzerland. Even actually Swiss people are part of this group of business owners as well. And, I mean they could be fully conversant with all the languages in Switzerland, but they want to conduct more and more in English because they see the Swiss market is quite restricted in the way that it’s a small market. I mean it’s a small population. So, if they have a service, particularly if they’re a service and they can offer an online service, then why restrict yourself just to Switzerland?
I mean a lot of them want to break out into kind of North America and English speaking countries, because there’s a huge population. If they’re providing something online, then why restrict yourself just to a smaller market of less people that are actually speaking English?
Alex: Yes. Now you mention that one of the areas that you really help with is in helping getting clarity, getting purpose.
Alex: So, I mean what’s the risk for someone setting up in business from not having a real clear purpose. For their own life, but also for the business, what could be the downside of that?
James: Yes, the downside is a lot of business owners, or aspiring entrepreneurs want to create a business, don’t always know what they want to do. So, sometimes they can be easily influenced or lead to believing that, ‘Oh yes, this is where the money is’ and they’re chasing the money rather than the purpose or the passion.
So, then they’re looking at, ‘Oh yes, I can make a lot of money doing that. This person’s doing that, I’ll do the same’. But, then normally you find two years down the line, it was really not them. They’ve kind of fallen short on their expectations and then decided that this is really not for me. And then you’re kind of back to the beginning again, thinking, ‘Well, what do I do?’
So, I typically help people and find that clarity and purpose, it’s normally driven from basically from within themselves. So things that they’re good at, things that they love. Then the areas that we feel that they can grow and nurture, to make a business from. So it’s important to get that. Once you’ve got the clarity and the passion, or you’ve found your niche, a lot of people kind of find it naturally. But for the ones that don’t, it can definitely help them. Because then once you’ve got it, you’re then building a solid foundation to work upon. If you haven’t got that solid foundation, over time it will crumble and you’ll end up going back to the beginning. Or, giving the whole thing up; if you’ve come from the corporate world you might decide, ‘Hmm, the corporate world is for me, and business life isn’t’. And then you go backwards.
So, it’s very important to define and help people find their clarity and their purpose and then build upon that with their business.
Alex: So, we’ve got these two things, purpose and visibility fundamental for business owners really. What else, what are small businesses really looking for then in a mentor. I would call you a mentor, if you don’t mind, or a business coach? What are they really looking for today?
What are small businesses looking for in a mentor or coach?
James: Yes, they’re looking for some guidance actually. We don’t all have the same knowledge and we’re not all experts at everything. So, even a business coach maybe an expert in one thing, it doesn’t mean that they know how to do everything.
When I, as an example, when I first started out I was thinking, ‘Right, as a business owner what do I need to be a business owner?’ Now I might know a certain topic and I might be the expert at that topic, but I might not know how to form a business.
So, then you need others, so you need a guide, a coach, a mentor to actually help you formulate that. So they say, ‘Right, so, this is the idea. You’ve got clarity, you’ve got a purpose, you want to gain visibility now. How are going to gain visibility? What is it that you’re doing?’
So, it’s kind of going back to, they’ve got this vision where they want to be, but then how do they drive that vision? So you need to put a plan in place. In the plan is actually to augment the kind of all of the different things together that they need, to build their business.
Now, it could be anything, it could be something as simple as they need a website. May be they don’t need a website depending on their business, they need a landing page. They need, so until you understand what it is in their business and how they want to create that visibility, you have to understand what it is they’re trying to achieve. Then work with them on that, because one model doesn’t fit all.
Different business owners come in at different stages in their business journey and maybe have different challenges. Some kind of want a bit of training and they want to do it all themselves. And others, have no idea and they don’t want to do it themselves, they want an expert to do it for them. So this is kind of what you need to find out at the beginning.
Or, wherever they are and their challenges are so you can address those and then help them move that forward.
Alex: Fantastic. So, I mean let’s just wind back a little bit then. Because we didn’t cover how you got here…
Alex: So, [laugh] you know, I want to understand from your, you know from you, why and how did you start this business you are in today. You know, what was the real driver for you?
James: Okay, so I was in the corporate world as a Senior Executive actually, heading up many software companies, typically American-based ones, representing them in Europe. So, technology in a way that my primary customers were the big Tel-co’s, I mean Swisscom was actually a customer of mine for many years. Which actually brought me here to Switzerland, which is kind of another story.
So, I was working in technology, technology software as a service sales. Selling digital transformation, Internet of Things, unified communication and stuff like that. And then looking at ‘did I want to do this for the rest of my life’? Or, was there something more that I wanted to do? And rather than working for other people, this is something, I always had the desire to do something for myself, but I never really knew what. I could leverage on kind of the skill-set of sales and the technology background. But, then what would I apply it to? And then, yes I was feeling quite disillusioned at the time. So, yes I needed to find my clarity and my purpose, and then once I discovered that, then I wanted to help other people do the same.
So, then looking at the business owners that wanted to start off, I wanted to help them in a way that I’d kind of gone through those steps as well. I was moving away from the corporate environment, now into an environment that was completely different. I’d have to wear multiple different hats and do something that was really outside of my comfort zone. I didn’t have all the answers, and I was at the beginning struggling as well. I knew kind of what I wanted to offer, but I didn’t know how to go about offering it.
So in the early days and even now, I mean I have my own mentor, I have several mentors and people that coach and guide me. But, leveraging on that and with the skill-set I’ve got I can also help people similar and they want to do something like I have done.
Alex: I mean you gave me a great quote when you wrote to me earlier on. I think it was when you were in London, or somewhere else. And you were asking yourself the question, ‘Is this as good as it gets?’ So, it must have been a difficult time when you’re going from this transition. Questioning you know is this really all it is? And so latching on to a new purpose must have been you know, very, very transformational? I know it doesn’t happen overnight, I know it doesn’t happen overnight.
James: It doesn’t. I mean I was kind of in this corporate environment for 20 years, 20+ years. And I was feeling that and also my personal situation had changed as well. I didn’t want to be travelling all the time, I was doing very much international travel. And every week I was on a plane somewhere.
And now that we have three small children, I mean a 6-year-old and twins are 3-year-old. I didn’t want to be on a plane all the time, I wanted to be closer to them. I wanted to see how they grow and develop. And I thought, although I was good at doing what I was doing, hence being in a senior position. I didn’t want that anymore. I felt, I mean as I said, is this as good as it gets? I kind of wanted something more, but I didn’t know what it was I wanted more of. I’m thinking,
I’m kind of on this train journey and although there’s a destination at the end of it, how do I get to the destination that I wanted to be at? And if it was going to be the same as it was, then I wanted to get off this train or change direction and do something more, something more meaningful, purpose driven. And also that I could spend more time with the family.
So, my motivation is kind of different to other people, and I didn’t want to be on that plane. Twenty years ago I wanted to be on that plane every week, it was a completely different lifestyle. But now, with my personal life and my business life, I wanted something different. But I’ve always known being on a plane. I mean my second office and second home was a plane, or a hotel room. And I didn’t want that anymore. But I found it hard to change because that’s what I was kind of good at. So I was searching for answers as well.
Alex: So there you are, you found some sort of answers, you know, you know that you want to help people, you want to help businesses, small businesses. You don’t want to travel and you want to have some freedom there. So, great, so there you go, you get started. I’m sure it wasn’t plain sailing, I mean you must have had problems along the way. So, what kind of challenges did you find as you were getting started up with your business?
What were the challenges when starting up the business?
James: Yes, so the challenges I had at the beginning were I had to make that kind of paradigm shift in the way that I was thinking. I had to change my mindset and I had to do something that was way outside of my comfort zone. It was easy to stay doing what I was doing, but then I also got to a point that I couldn’t sustain that any longer. I didn’t want to be travelling. It was then starting to affect the job that I was good at.
To actually to change that I had to seriously think about what it is I wanted to do. But I had no idea at the time what I wanted to do. So I ended up finding myself actually unemployed. I mean it was a bit of a disaster, I was in a situation that I’d become unemployed because I couldn’t sustain the travel. I needed more flexibility in the way that I worked and the company wasn’t offering that. I was basically a sales guy, and if I wasn’t doing sales, then what am I doing?
And I thought, ‘Well this didn’t work’ and it got to a position that I couldn’t do it. Logistically it wasn’t possible and I didn’t feel that desire and passion anymore. So, I unfortunately become unemployed and as part of the unemployment I was offered this training. I thought I’ll take whatever they throw at me because I really was lost and I didn’t know what to do.
So, I went on the training. It was actually to help me write my C.V. and stuff and I got there, and I said, ‘I don’t want to do this. I’m just on this training kind of for the sake of it. But I really want something different, but I don’t know what I want.’
Then the lady that was the coach at the time, she said to me that the problem is you don’t know who you are. And I said, ‘Well, I do, I’m James.’ So she said, ‘No’. She said, ‘Not James, that’s a name. She said, ‘Who are you?’ and I said, ‘Well a father of three kids’. So she said, ‘No, that’s a situation’. She said, ‘Who are you?’ and the more that she asked me who I was, the more I asked answered and she said, ‘No, no, no, no, no. That is not you.’ She said, ‘The problem is you don’t know who you are.’ And I said to her, ‘Yes’, I said, ‘You’re right, I don’t.’ She said, ‘Well I can help you find who you are, if you want me to coach you in doing that. But, it’s not really part of the curriculum of this training. I’ll have to do it outside of this.’ And I said, ‘Okay, I’m all ears, tell me. Because I don’t know who I am.’
So basically she helped me over a matter of weeks, help me discover. Unlock the secrets basically of who I was, because I had no idea. And she said, ‘You’ve got so much value to offer.’ and she said, ‘You’re going to tell me’. And I said, ‘But I don’t know.’ She said, ‘Through a series of questions and using the icky guide philosophy…’ and I thought, ‘Icky guide, what’s that?’ Then I can help you find who you are.
So, anyway, cut a long story short, six weeks went by. I found out who I was and I discovered so, so much about myself that I never knew I had. Particularly things that you’re kind of born with, that you’ve never utilised. You’ve gone to school and everything, and you’ve never taken some of these key attributes that are the making of you forward. And you’ve kind of in a way been brainwashed into society to believing that to follow the mainstream and to do what you’re told, rather than do what you believe.
From that I kind of lost it and she helped me find that again, find out who I really was. And then once I discovered that then I felt literally so, so powerful I wanted to know more. So then I studied it, I practiced it, I practiced on friends and family. Then people would recommend people to me. And then I’d do that.
So then I would help people find their clarity and purpose. But then I also had this business side to me as well, which I’d been doing for 20 years. So how can I apply a business methodology and clarity and purpose, gained with helping people grow and gain visibility at the same time? And wrap it up into something that’s more meaningful, that you can actually help a business owner or aspiring entrepreneur. Even from no idea to help them find an idea, or with a business that’s really going nowhere, how to find the clarity and the purpose. Throw in a methodology that actually works and then help them on their path to success. So kind of that’s how it started.
Alex: And in terms of the business itself today. I mean you’re obviously helping other business owners and people who need this clarity, or business support. Any two or three other challenges that stick out, after you’d got through this phase of clarity for yourself. I mean what challenges have you faced along the way?
The challenges faced when looking for clarity
James: Yes, so I wanted to help people gain visibility and visibility comes in many forms as well. So, to be visible is one thing, but to actually have credibility is another. So, it wasn’t just about the visibility, so I was also trying to gain visibility because I wanted people to recognise who I was. So as business owner and a coach and mentor to people, then who am I, who is James? And what does he actually represent?
So then I needed visibility myself. So, I thought if I need it, then surely they need it. Because if I’m not visible to them, and they’re not visible to me, then who are we visible to? So, I wanted visibility.
But, visibility you can easily gain visibility by walking down the high street dressed as a clown. That’ll give you visibility, but it won’t give you any credibility. So, I wanted with visibility you need credibility. So, how do I create the credibility and then authenticity and then ultimately the trust?
So, in my journey I was looking at ways to create visibility. So, then I started to do multiple different things. I did radio interviews; I’ve done several podcasts and this one also, which is fantastic. So podcasting is a great way to actually get that exposure.
And then visibility, I wanted to help others gain visibility, so I created a Facebook group that people could come into the group. If they’re like-minded people, then they can share their experiences, and they can help one another. They can promote their business and their service as well. So, why not create a platform in the way that people can do that?
So, then using a Facebook group I encouraged people to come and join and share their experiences. So this was founded in, or formed, in October last year and we have over 330 members now. It’s all about them gaining visibility.
Now one way, as I said, there’s many ways to gain visibility. So, another way I introduced the kind of 40-second video intro challenge. So it’s a way that don’t just come into the group and sit there quiet in the background. But actually, if you want to gain visibility into a group of like-minded people, a lot that you’ll actually know, then why not do a 40-second intro video challenge?
The way it’s 40 seconds is because it’s kind of an elevator pitch, so I like 40 seconds. And video, because everything is about video these days, so as soon as they do a video, and they post it in the group then they gain visibility straight away.
So there are many different ways to do that. I mean I also need to do more video myself, because video is a great medium to actually expose yourself and people to remember. Text and pictures are one thing, but video is fantastic.
So, there is that within the group to do that and a lot of people still haven’t done it. They say they are going to do it and haven’t done it because they’re shy. Or, it’s taken them out of their comfort zone, or they’ve never done it before. And they’re really don’t want to do it, so it’s hard for some people to gain visibility. You have to really take them out of their comfort zone.
But you’ll find that once you’ve done it, it’s a bit like, quite ironically it was my Mum’s birthday last week and we were in the UK and my sister said, ‘Oh well we’re going to do karaoke.’ I thought, ‘Oh no the karaoke, I don’t want to do that’. But, as people started to do it, you thought, ‘Oh what the hell, I’m going to do it anyway.’ So then , once you’ve done it once, you think, ‘Oh, I want to do another one.’
So I find that once you take someone out of their comfort zone and they actually embrace it, then they think, ‘Well it wasn’t so bad after all’. So, gaining visibility is about also coming out of your comfort zone and accepting a challenge and doing something that maybe you typically wouldn’t do. But you will definitely see the rewards and the benefits for doing it.
So that was one. So I mean we can talk about all the different mechanisms of visibility, but these are key ones that it’s not so bad.
Alex: Yes, I’m totally with you on the comfort zone thing. I mean when I first [laugh] started this podcast, I must admit, it was out of my comfort zone. And now it’s just it seems very natural just having conversations with people like you. It’s a wonderful thing to do, so there’s no issue there. But, I remember the feeling at the beginning, and this can really definitely hold people back as they try to launch their business is being seen. But, going back to something else that you mentioned before. Because you obviously had this lady that was pivotal and helped you in this question of answering the question, ‘Who are you, James?’ What other help or support have you had along the way on your entrepreneurial journey? Mentors or coaches and how important has that been?
Support on the entrepreneurial journey and its importance
James: Okay. So, after that, so once I felt I had a sense of purpose, I uncovered so many different things that I could do. I mean she wasn’t going to tell me what job I should be doing. It was her idea to uncover kind of all the value that I had within me. And then it was up to me to decide what do I do with it? Do I do nothing with it? Do I go back to the corporate world and complain? Or, do I actually do something with it?
Which one I chose, or maybe there are several I chose is really entirely up to me. So, but then once I did I thought, ‘Well now I want to go off in this direction. I want to be business owner, I want to be this aspiring entrepreneur. And I want to leave a legacy behind and be me, rather than someone else. How do I do it?
So, it was just around the same time there was an advert about joining a program, it was ‘Industry Rockstar’ with Cain and Alessiah and, yes, I mean they were offering to come along and embrace that. Have a look and see if this is for you, and I was kind of feeling at that stage I didn’t have a mentor. I didn’t have coach, I didn’t really know which way to look. I needed something to grab hold of and something that with using experts and their advice to guide me on my journey.
So, even though this was something I wanted to do myself, I needed the help to get me up and running at the beginning. So I joined their program a year or so ago. I mean when I found my purpose, this was three years ago. So I’m not talking about something recent. But I kind of didn’t really do much with it, and it was kind of a only in the last year and a half or so that I joined a program to actually do something with it.
And then there, I have dedicated mentors, I have coaches, we have training. We have a program of different events that I learn a lot from. I knew nothing about how to brand myself. I knew nothing about digital marketing. I didn’t even know what social media really was, I dabbled with like your own personal Facebook, but when someone said, ‘Oh no, you need a Facebook page’. I thought, ‘Well I have one.’ And they said, ‘No, no, that’s your personal page, you need a business page.’ I thought, ‘Well why do I want one of those?’ And then why do I need a Facebook group, what will a group bring? Then about other social, what would I use that?
So I mean there was a lot I didn’t know and to be a business owner I needed training on that. I needed to understand what it was. Was it something that I could myself with some training? I felt, yes. Other things that I really had no interest or passion to do, and I could get someone else to do, that’s also possible.
So, by joining a program it definitely helped me discover a lot more things that were out there. I mean I was kind of old school thinking. Although I embrace technology when it came to digital transformation stuff like that. I didn’t really understand too much about other technologies, about what’s the value of social media? What is copyright and what is the value of having a website? And how can you use a website with automation and that can actually convert people? I just thought a website is a website. And then once people explain and well do you need a website and how you can make a website work for you and social media and other things. Then you start to understand their value.
Alex: It’s fair to say you’ve cut a few corners then and had a few shortcuts?
James: Oh yes.
Alex: I mean that’s what it’s about isn’t it? I mean getting a mentor, getting someone to help you.
James: For sure.
Alex: Trying to learn from their mistakes or their successes, enough to do a combination.
James: A combination of both, yes.
Alex: Yes, I mean looking at your successes or learnings, what would you say that’s important for you to share to those who are thinking of setting up business? Or, perhaps they are a little bit lost right now in their entrepreneurial journey. What learnings could you share, let’s say two or three that are important?
Learnings when setting up a business
James: Yes. Don’t feel that you’re alone, because there’s many people that feel the same. Now it doesn’t matter if you haven’t got an idea at the moment, you can gain that clarity and find your purpose. And if you have got a business that you feel is not really going anywhere fast, then there are experts and professionals out there. So, reach out, I mean there’s people that can help, and for sure, as I said, you’re definitely not alone. There’s a lot of people, and actually once you start joining groups and communities of like-minded people, you’ll actually discover there’s so much more in common, then you knew. Then you feel kind of you’ve got a safety net of other people around you that are experiencing the same.
And then particularly with the group, we can ask each other questions. And, it doesn’t matter how stupid you think the question is, if you don’t know the answer, there will be someone in the group that knows the answer, then it helps. And this is what we’re here to do, we help to help you promote your business and gain that visibility and to feel that you’re not alone on your quest and on your journey to better things.
Alex: So what about the future then James, what does it hold in store for you? What are you planning?
Plans for the future
James: Yes, so, yes the problem is I’ve got a very creative mind and I’ve got many, many ideas. And there’s three areas that I want to focus on and although people say you should only focus on one. Because they’re all a passion, I kind of want to dabble into all of them. But, if I dabble in all, does that mean I’m less focused on the one I need to grow? So, you can become overwhelmed with trying to do too much at the same time.
James: But, nevertheless, the three things I want to do, is obviously I’m a business owner so I want to help inspire them. I want to help coach and be a mentor to them. Whatever stage they are in their business, or even if they haven’t even started a business to help them and to nurture and grow that.
The other thing is to, if someone hasn’t found their purpose, then this is very personal to me because I went through that kind of turning point as well. I thought, yes, I felt actually useless and I felt that 20 years of something that I was going to throw away and not do anything with, because I didn’t know what I wanted. So, now that I’ve discovered that, to help other people find that is so, so powerful. And, yes, you can help someone from being disillusioned and lost, to actually find clarity and purpose and want to drive something forward.
And then kind of the last thing, although we never touched on this at all. I mean having three kids and doing bedtime stories with kids, there’s something magical that I worked with them on because they’re also an inspiration to me. Sometimes we look at leaders as an inspiration, but then sometimes I now look at my kids.
Because the way kids are developing and growing and the things that they learn, and the way they feed that back to you is magical. So I do something really quite special with them, I do interactive bedtime story telling. I take them on a magical journey every night and they look forward to going to bed. They love to go to bed so we can have a magical journey. But it’s not my story, it’s their story, I’m just the kind of narrator, the storyteller. There’s something, yes, I’ve been playing around with. I record them all, so I’ve got three years of recordings of bedtime stories.
James: But I’ve done nothing with it and I’m speaking with other like-minded business people. We come across people that are storytellers. We come across people that write children’s story books. And then talking to them I kind of parked this and never done anything with it. And then once I start speaking to them, they say, ‘Why haven’t you done anything with it? And I’m thinking, ‘Because I never even knew that it was a purpose, or anything that I could do something with, it’s kind of more of a hobby.’ And so, without going into all the details about that, because that’s something magical in itself. It’s really the art of bedtime storytelling that I can teach parents and how they can interact with their kids is magical.
Alex: Well if you can help parents have their children look forward to going to bed, I think you’ve solved a major problem in itself. [Laugh]
James: No absolutely, yes.
Alex: That’s fantastic.
James: This is kind of how it started. Because when Tom was a child, was smaller it was a struggle getting him to bed. But, so it was kind of something that I’ve learnt the art of doing over three years. And now I’ve kind of mastered it, then to teach other parents the art of doing it, it’s not me going to tell the stories. It’s about them interacting with their kids and how they tell the stories. But, once you’ve learnt the art of doing it, then the rest is plain sailing.
Alex: Brilliant. Listen James, I want to, we’re going to end it there. I just want to thank you so much for being on the show. For telling your story, thank you for all the help that you give to other people. I want to recognise that, they know whether it’s in their visibility area, whether it’s in their finding their purpose.
You’ve given me the website name, your business is called, ‘Visibility Impact’ and your website is visibilityimpact.com and I’ll put the weblink into the shownotes, as well as the link to your Facebook group. And, I know that you’ve said to me that people can reach out to you on that website. And if they want to get on the call and have a free call with you, you’re very happy to sort of spend some time with them just to sort of talk about their business and their issues. So I appreciate that, but again, I just want to thank you a lot. And you know, let’s do this again in the future and I wish you all the best, James. Thanks again.
James: Yes, thank you very much Alex, it’s been a pleasure and you’re very professional at what you do and I love it. Great stuff.
Alex: Thanks, James. All the best, cheers.
James: Thank you.