Success is something we all strive for and find in different forms and places. It can be difficult to determine what that means for us, and to stay optimistic when we don’t reach our goals along that road.

In this episode of the Banowetz Podcast, Solomon talks about his road to success as an entrepreneur so far, and the strategies he has devised for continual growth.

 

Transcription:

Sarah: Welcome back to the Banowetz Marketing podcast. I’m glad you’re here. My name is Sarah  and today I have Solomon Groothuis with me as a guest. How are you Solomon?

Solomon: I’m doing so good. I just want to tell everyone that this is our second take. I feel good about it. Cause first take, I felt like I sounded like an absolute, like clown.

Sarah: Now we just have to remember everything we were talking about.

Solomon: Every single word, but make it but make it eloquent. I absolutely struggled to say that, but anyway, anyway, thank you for having me.

Sarah: So our topic today is on the cost of entrepreneurship and we’re going to hit a little bit about being a comeback kid.

Solomon: We’ll get to it if we get to it, cause I’m a talker.

Sarah: But tell us a little bit about yourself.

Solomon: Okay. I’m Solomon, I’m 19. I currently work for Vector Marketing, selling Cutco cutlery as a contractor, which is entrepreneurship. I mostly work by reaching out to people and doing demos for them. And what’s cool is when you do the demos, like you get paid for the appointment if you don’t sell anything, but at this point, like, I don’t know I usually sell something.

I have always been someone who craved the nontraditional. I grew up homeschooled, which I absolutely thrived in. When I went to high school. was always doing activities and could kick us out of the classroom. In fact, I remember Every single quarter after the first day, I’d come back to the counselor and change every class. Like I didn’t like it, you know? And I remember when I went to Lynn Marr, cause we moved my senior year, and I went to Linn Marr and they’re like, you have to actually take a trig class to graduate.

I was like, Oh no, I don’t. They’re like, no, you have to take it like, Oh, I’m never going to use that. I don’t need to take it. And they’re like, no, no, no, you have to take it. I was like, No, I don’t. And it was like, literally for five minutes, I was trying to debate myself out of this required math class.

Sarah: What ended up happening?

Solomon: I took a, I mean, maybe it was cutting it. I think it was chemistry was what it was. And. I was in, by the way, chemistry, they want you to think it’s a science  class, they’re lying. It’s a math class. They’re liar, liar, liar. But anyway, back to what we’re here to talk about.

Yeah, so I’m an entrepreneur. I haven’t done any kind of, you know, secondary education.

I just got back from a stint in Chicago where I tried to expand my business and I didn’t fail, but I took a different approach.

Sarah: Learned.

Solomon: Learned, yeah.

Sarah: So you go to Chicago?

Solomon: For like, maybe like five or six months. And I went there because there was a lot more sales opportunities to do fairs and shows.

And I felt like, I didn’t have a car, and I was like, well, I don’t want to be biking around from spot to spot in the winter in Iowa. Right? And I was like, cool, Chicago it is. And also someone who was higher up in the company suggested it. I’m also someone who is very spontaneous, very on a whim.

Sarah: Yeah. I don’t believe it at all.

Solomon: Me? Never, no. But I was like, he literally said you should move to Chicago. I said, yeah okay. And then I was like, dad I’m, moving to Chicago and my dad actually was super, super supportive. And his logic, even though he’s someone who’s very conservative and traditional and kind of, you know, up by his bootstraps, by the book person, he said, the reason he’s like that is he has 15 children.

Sarah: Well, that’s what I was going to say. You can’t be that way with 15 kids.

Solomon: But he said, he’s like, I think that the time to take those risks and try crazy things is now. He’s like, when you’re 19 you don’t have a mortgage, you don’t have a family, you don’t have a spouse. You have roots, but like you don’t.

Sarah: They’re roots that you can come back to.

Not routes that are keeping you stuck.

Solomon: Absolutely.

And so he’s like, when I told him that, at first he was like, I’m like, what do you think? I want your opinion. You’re like the smartest person I know. He’s like, okay yeah, go for it , now is the time to try it. And if you fail, you can always come back. And that’s exactly what happened.

Sarah: But you didn’t fail.

Solomon: I didn’t fail.

Sarah: It was a learning experience.

Solomon: We’re working on my vocabulary.

I want to just touch on, I think that the biggest thing that causes entrepreneurs to kind of stop entrepreneuring is self talk, totally self talk. I’ve been working on self talk and self esteem and like, sometimes like, you know, there’s split brain theory where there’s like a side of our brain that we don’t control.

That’s talking to us. And I don’t, I don’t actually subscribe to that. I think, you know, I’m spiritual, we’re called to take every thought captive. And if you’re not intentionally like, thinking about what you’re thinking about, it sucks. You’re like an animal, like you don’t control yourself. And I, and I’m someone who like the least sexy thing I can think of is self control, right?

Like I am someone who is like really spontaneous. I really want just go out and push and try new things and be crazy. And, you know, either live in fame, die in flame, and that’s like, that’s not who I want to be anymore, because it’s like, that actually becomes really toxic.

Sarah: I’m assuming you don’t want to swing all the way to the other side.

Solomon: No, no. It’s about balance. And I think that if you’re going into entrepreneurship, odds are you are not a balanced person.

Sarah: You don’t know how many times I have driven away from this office and thought, only crazy people start businesses.

Solomon: You have to be.

Sarah: You have to be.

Why would you torture yourself this way?

Solomon: It’s like entertainment. Cause I do a lot of theater and stuff. Like nobody goes into theater because they’re like humble and healthy people. No one starts a business because they’re…

Sarah: They are glutton for punishment

Solomon: They are glutton for punishment, glutton for glory and significance.

I think people who do this really want significance.  Once you kind of shift your need for significance into a need for growth, that’s when you kind of strike gold. Because like, ultimately, everyone only thinks about themselves.

You will never be as significant to other people as you are to yourself. And so it’s going to be this empty, empty crevice of just trying to fill it up with people looking at you. Look at me, look at me, look at me, look at me, look at me. And like, I mean, literally look at me. That’s how I am, but it’s like, if I can shift that to being like, actually I want to grow myself and change myself.

You can still be looking inward, but instead of needing everyone to look at you, you just need to be impactful and give back to everyone else. And that’s actually a way more sustainable way of having quote unquote significance is by simply chasing after growth. Because then significance is the biproduct instead of the product being something that’s so trivial and doesn’t ultimately matter. Like we think that being the most important person in the world matters, but like there’s always someone more important. There’s always a marketing company bigger, someone selling more knives. Do you know what I mean? No matter what it is.

Sarah: Someone having a bigger impact on the world.

Solomon: Exactly, it’s such an empty, empty, empty race. I think that with entrepreneurship, if you’re going into it for money or glory or significance, or to be your own boss, like you’re going to, it’s not the right reason. You have to go into entrepreneurship for the sake of growth.

And I am certainly not the poster child for that, because I feel like, I think of people, even in Vector Marketing and other entrepreneurs who are so good at that, and they always are growing. Like my former boss, Alan, he actually lives out in California now and he’s, he is someone who I’ve seen grow so much. He’s the one that got me to go to Tony Robbins. I went to a Tony Robbins conference. He got me to start reading books that weren’t like novels, you know, because I  am a creator. I want to read novels. And like, he got me into Gary Vee. We, thankfully, live in a time where information is so accessible. Do you know what I mean?

We can literally know anything at any given moment. And so, what I’ve learned is that everything I thought I knew about myself, I need to stay humble. I need to play it safe. You know, those are, those can easily evolve and be manipulated into being something that’s actually really ugly.

Like, I need to lessen myself. I need to be mean to myself or else I’m going to be narcissistic and awful. And I think that ultimately there actually is nothing more narcisistic than self hate. Imagine caring about yourself so much that you create these elaborate insults, these novellas of hatred, towards just yourself. Like, okay, you’re obsessed, get over it.

I think that we view insulting yourself as a form of humility, but it’s really like the ugliest form of pride, you know, it’s not good.

Sarah: I am learning so much from you. Just right now, this is amazing. Okay. So here’s, what’s amazing too, about growth, because here’s the thing. Gary Vee was all about hustle.

Solomon: Yeah.

Sarah: It was all hustle, hustle, hustle. And then he saw the kickback from that. The actual outcome. Like first people were like, that doesn’t make sense, but then you saw what actually was happening with people, the self talk that was coming out of it  and so he changed.

So now in the last year or so, he’s even said this, he goes, I stopped talking about hustle on purpose, and now I talk about happiness and it’s all about happiness, happiness, happiness . Happiness is the end game and I’m like, but it can’t be because I’m not happy a lot of the times, you know what I’m saying?

And even then when I try and when I try to search after happiness, I get even less happy.

Like I love Gary Vee I like everything he says, he’s so spot on. But Gary Vee you were wrong about the hustle thing. It got, you swung too far with the hustle thing, and now you’re swinging too far with the happiness.

Solomon: I think because I’m someone who’s pretty spiritual, I grew up Christian and I still am, I think that happiness is so fleeting. You know what I mean? It’s like, you’re seeking these little moments when ultimately joy is what you want. And it’s different from the happiness.

Happiness is situational. Joy is a mindset. You know what I mean? Cause under happiness, no other emotion can exist. It’s under joy, it’s all encompassing. Right? So I have, my heart is someone is I’m always constantly filled with like grief. Like I’ve had a lot of grief in my life. And so I’m like, I had to get to a place where I’m like, okay, well, I can’t be consumed and crying all the time.

But then I swung the other way. I was like, I need to be happy. And I became this like creepy animatronic of happiness. And I was like the funniest person in the room, the bubbliest person in the room, making sure everyone feels good, but then it’s like, okay, now I have to take off my clown nose for a little bit and what’s left?

And so under joy, You have the hustle, you have the happiness, you have the grief, you have the glamour, you have it all, but it’s like, you come from a place of joy. And I think the root of joy for me is gratitude.

I’m someone who’s really into bullet journaling. It’s so fun!

With bullet journaling, I always start every day and be like, what are five things I’m thankful for? And so today I wrote Banowetz Marketing. I was really excited, I get to be on a podcast for the first time, my grand debut. So I wrote Banowetz Marketing, and I wrote my sister. I wrote coffee. I wrote my socks. I’ve really cute socks that I’m really loving. And then I wrote, you know, Jesus, cause I was like, really, my spiritual journey has been like, even crazier than my entrepreneur journey, but that’s a different podcast .

Sarah: That can be a Journey podcast.

Solomon: That could be such a good Journey podcast.

And I was just like, okay, well with gratitude, even though today, things will go my way and not my way. And even today they have, right. I’m still like, I have so much, you know what I mean? And even some people will talk to me, you know, because of my mental health and everything. They’re like, wow, it’s really hard for you, but I, and I’m like, well, people are dying. I don’t want to minimize anything. Cause I think that’s the other, the other trap you fall into, you’re like, well, I’m not obsessed with my own pain, but then it’s like, well, I guess I must minimize my pain.

And that’s what I say, entrepreneurs where people have extremes. And so that is what I do. I’d either be wallowing in my pain. In Chicago, when I knew I had to come home, it was like I had a week where I was like, not taking care of myself. I was like abusing substances. I was like, totally like, well, if my life is wrecked let me really just shoot a second bullet in the head. Then I’m like, well that’s not it either.

That’s not like, obviously that’s silly Gilly. So then I was like, okay, now I have to focus on what’s next.

I have said that word fail probably like 50 times since I walked in today and it’s wrong every time, because it really is a lesson. And it’s like, when you fail, you just see what’s your current capacity.

And that kind of ties into what it means to be a comeback kid, because like, this is not my first time within Vector where it kind of crashed. Right. and for me, like when you were, when you kind of, when you fail, it’s like you have to, you’re trying to step back and assess where you’re at and then you have to set a bigger goal.

You can’t ever fail, then go for the exact same thing. You have to be hungry for more because you’ll be so uninspired by that same goal that you just failed at that you’re going to get into this cycle of like reaching for, for me, for example, I’ll just give you like a real life example. I remember my goal was when I first started was to sell 10 K in 10 days.

I didn’t hit that. I hit 7,500, which you know, I did it on a bike, so it wasn’t like the saddest thing ever. But I was like, oh my gosh, I didn’t hit my sales goal. And so then it came time for this really big push where we have these sales competitions. And I was like, okay, I’m going to hit 10 K, I’m going to hit 10 K. I’m going to hit 10 K.

And then I was like, I’m so stressed and bored and uninspired by that. And my manager who is so smart is like, well, could you do more? I mean, this is a longer push, couldn’t you do more. And I was like, okay, yeah, I’ll do 12,500. And he’s like, okay, could you do more? And so then my goal was to sell 15,000 in 17 days.

And because I had that bigger goal and I had such a hunger that was not even a hunger of desperation, but a hunger for abundance. I ended up selling 25 K in those 17 days.

And I think that it’s like, when you want to come back, you can’t come back to get back to where you were, you have to come back wanting to be better.

I was just watching some Joan Crawford movies. I’m such a weirdo. And she was someone who is really hungry for success in her time. And I remember just like, when she finally won her Oscar, it wasn’t when she was turning out the same thing. She always, it turned out she changed studios and embraced an entirely different role.

And then she won. And I think that we could learn from that because I think we’re so addicted to our, whatever, like for you, this is your third business. This has to work and it is, but is that the highest goal, to have it your third business work? What’s your highest goal? You don’t have to answer that like right now in the middle of nowhere.

I think what I love, what about you is that I don’t know what your personal biggest goal ever is, but what you really do well at is like the people you bring on. And I think we can transition to talking about all the people I love like June and Jan and Ian and everyone.

If anyone’s watching or listening, like then you just know that there’s a certain kind of person that works at Banowetz Marketing. And like, when you see them, it makes sense because they’re all so different, right? Like I think of even the three people in this room and we’re all different people. But like, we all know are United because you’re really good at curating certain kinds of personalities that compliment, right. Like artist. Artists artists, all artists, but then like the other room, we have someone who’s a worker entrepreneur, you know, Ian, although he’s an amazing musician and everyone should check out Gold Revere on Spotify.

Sarah: Definitely!

Solomon: Totally knows how to market himself and how to market other people. And like, he is constantly creating these viral moments on social media. And like, I can’t do that. I’m too busy talking about Joan Crawford, you know? I think of June Schmidt, Right. And she’s someone who is so elegant and so classy and a little bougie.

And so she, when you talk to her, you’re like, oh, she knows everything and she’s cooler than me, so I should listen. You know what I mean? And so, and then you have people who are so crazy, quirky, weird, and it’s all of these, this big mishmash of kind of pieces that don’t work together. But then it makes this beautiful pattern of Banowetz Marketing that works really, really well.

And that’s what I, that’s what I get geeked about coming here. Whenever I’m here, I’m like, Oh, I get to go see these people.

You are so sweet. I love that. And it’s true. I mean, I tried to pull people together that were strong weaknesses.

You really find these diamonds of people you think wouldn’t work. I worked for you a little bit. Just, you know, on a commercial and then I worked for you finding people and finding clients. Most marketing agencies, I go up to them like, yeah, I have no college. I’m 19. I want to work here. Even Ian, even though Ian is one of the most insanely talented people I know, he doesn’t have the paper experience resume that like is super hot for growing business.

But you look deeper and you are such a quick snap judge on people and you see the best in people in a very realistic way.

Sarah: Do you remember? And I was so upset about this, how I got connected to that group. I still am upset about this. I’m in, not for it for no, for the sake of you guys. So I get connected to these groups of kids, because of the Shrek musical.

And don’t you remember, like I’m sitting there at the Shrek musical at Linn Mar and I’m thinking, Linn Mar is full of business leaders. The district, like the parents there. It’s full of business leaders and I’m sitting there and I’m like, I knew you when you were Shrek. So I’m like, okay, I can get these kids first.

I’m watching Nina, and I’m watching Aakash I’m watching you and I’m like, I couldn’t wait until the musical was over. I loved it and I wanted to go back, but then also I wanted to pull your ear aside, like right away and be like, Solomon, I need you to pull these kids together and we need a team.

I need to do a commercial, multiple commercials. Like we need to do this. I wanted to get to you right away before all the other business leaders did. And then I talked to you, we did that. We actually did that.

And I talked to you. I was like, so how many other people reached out to you to do this? And you’re like, nobody. And I’m like, Are you kidding me?

Solomon: That’s what sets you ahead is, cause you are looking for the different and the fresh. Whereas other business leaders, like here’s how it has worked, you know, 50 years ago, 30 years ago, even two years ago, but you’re like, there’s something new, there’s something better. And you have that hunger for growth, not just for money, X, whatever, you’re hungry for growth.

And there is no one growing faster than someone who’s like 18, 19, you know. They’re nothing but growth the next few years, and I think that you wanted to harness that. And I think about the people that you work with, like on your wall. There’s so many young people, so many older people. So, I mean, in between people. It is a good mix of people, because I think that you don’t want your company or your team to be the same people.

And I look at other groups of people who are either entrepreneurs or business owners, I’m like, wow, how boring? You know, like everyone looks the same and talks the same acts the same as the same values, same goals, same whatever. And it’s like, even if the company does well, how fun can it be?

You know? Like here everyone has fulfillment and joy and growth and meaning and what they do. Right. You have amazing people who are good at tech, good at photography, good at marketing, good at numbers. And all of you get to, draw a little bit of meaning and growth from it.

I remember just even hearing a conversation earlier today. Annie was like, okay, well, this part of this job is not giving you, you know, contentment or joy or whatever. And you’re feeling like you’re less because of it. Why are we still doing it?

Most people that would not even be a question. Do you know what I mean? Most people, It’s like well bottom line, we need it. I think that that attitude of, I want to grow and I want to create, and I remember like even approaching me and you were like, I can only pay you this much. And it was like a way more than I’d ever made at like any other hourly job before I’m like, I am unskilled labor at this point.

Sarah: Actually Part of what has been successful at Banowetz Marketing is that I come up with these ideas and then I work to find a way to implement them.

Solomon: Yeah, I’ve, I’ve been to like four different schools in my life. Right? In inland Myra, especially like, just to kind of brag on my own, like, you know, for my high school, everyone therewants it. That’s a school of people who are like hungry for it. Like I remember even just the audition process was stupid competitive for our high school musical.

Sarah: Oh, I believe it. Because the production value of that Shrek musical was crazy. It was really amazing, but I’m sitting there and I’m like, I gotta get these kids together to create something for the marketing company, I just have to. So I wait until I think, I don’t know if I waited. I know I wanted to text you right away.

Solomon: You waited, like, I think a few days, maybe even almost a week, it was less than a week.

Sarah: I held myself back. I think I waited until, because I think I went on Friday night and I waited until the musical was over because I didn’t want to stress you out. I didn’t want to like you.

So I wait until you guys are done and then I sent you a message and I’m just hoping that I’m the first one and that you choose me. If there were more, I was assuming there was more, I was just dead set that Linn Mar district is full of business leaders, and I was dead set on the fact that they were going to be calling you. Or calling Linn Mar or whatever. And so when I get in touch with you and you’re like, Oh yeah, let’s do it. So then we go to Olive Garden.

Solomon: That was so fun.

Sarah: Yeah, you went to the bathroom and he comes back and it was the, Through the Years commercial for warehouse auto, I look at that and I am, I’m an artist, and artists critique their work very badly. Like they’re hard on themselves. Right?

Solomon: When it comes to like the artists who want to be entrepreneurs, you have to be able to separate the two sides of yourself a little bit.

You can’t be a perfectionist like an artist.

Sarah: And I think that, when you look at things like the, Through the years commercial the, idea was to do a commercial where you take the Warehouse Auto jingle, and we go through the years, right.

And we implemented that, and we implemented it on a low budget.

Solomon: Our costumes are still so funny to me. I mean, but I’d say a low budget, high production value because I didn’t even, everything turned out really good. What I liked about that was, even though I had this really concrete idea, I had to like, give it away.

Sarah: it was really Ian and Annalise ran with that and they were the ones pretty much directing it.

Solomon: They put it together. Yeah.

Sarah: But it was all of you guys working together as a team. And that’s the thing. You know, like you had said, seeing the value in people and what they’re capable of and everything.

I can see what you guys are capable of, and once the world can see it I can’t afford you anymore.

Solomon: That’s an amazing leadership quality is to see, we hear the word potential all the time. Potential is just, you know, untapped energy. But I think that not only you see potential, but like you see what people want.

You set us up in this position where we have guidance and we have control.

I think that oftentimes people are expected to either get one or the other. I mean, they’re either going to micromanage you or I’m going to leave you to the buzzards, you know? And I think that you do a good job of being like, I’m going to guide you, but I’m going to give you a sense of responsibility and control.

That’s actually, I think like the highest elevation form of leadership, in the sense that you’re empowering people to be without you and offering yourself completely. And I think that concern I’ve heard business say we don’t want to over train or give too many resources to our people or they’ll leave.

But it’s like, if you give them all that, they’ll want to stay

Sarah: Well, and if you don’t and they stay, then you’re not accomplishing great things.

Solomon: Yeah. And anyone that’s worked with, for or around you has wanted to stay near you. With the Banowetz Marketing too, it’s like, you literally add so much value.

We talked about the phrase over promise and over deliver and how scary that is, but like, I think back to that fun, fun, commercial, and how I felt like that’s what you did. You were like, guys, we’re gonna make something awesome. And I remember being a little skeptical cause I had, I was like, okay, we’re all a bunch of like seniors in high school. Like what are we possibly going to add to this?

Sarah: I didn’t know you thought that.

Solomon: I totally did. I lied. I was like, yeah, this is a great idea. I’m like, why are we doing this is kookoo? What the heck? And I was like, okay, like, whatever, like I like, I trust Sarah we’re friends. I believe her. And so, and then when we actually did it. It totally exceeded my expectations because everyone had such a huge part.

Everyone got to kind of lean into their forte. And I thought the commercial was awesome.

Sarah: And it was our first try!

Solomon: For a first draft, that was not bad.

That was, that was amazing for a first draft because what I would love to do for another one is, have you guys actually singing, like live.

I want to do a music festival at Warehouse Auto. Where it’s like, everyone’s just like, it’s live music while they shop.

Sarah: Oh my gosh, that’s such a great idea.

Solomon: I like to add music to everything. When I was in Chicago, I had a second job working at Giordano’s, and I knew it was time to go home because that job was more fun to me than selling the knives was at the time. And I was always like singing, singing, singing, singing, singing, and you know, and I was like, can they just pay me to sing here? And I’m not actually a singer. I like to sing, but that’s like not actually what I can get out.

And I just think that, if you’re good at, but you don’t like doing it, it’s not going to be as good as someone else that’s bad at it, but likes to do it. You know what I mean?

I think that the people we had on that, thing were not necessarily good at commercials Ian, was not used to editing commercials. We weren’t used to recording jingles for commercials. We weren’t used to commercial acting, whatever, but we all liked it. And so the product turned out versus someone who maybe is video editing, but like, doesn’t want to do it. Whereas Ian and I wanted to do it.

Well, and then the jingle, cause I had hated the older jingle for Warehouse Auto for the longest time.

And people love that commercial. They love the jingle. It would get stuck in their head, when Warehouse Auto started. So like the first 10 years of warehouse auto, that jingle was so popular and everything, but now it’s so old fashioned and I knew for sure I wanted that redone.

Sarah: And you guys, you weren’t there for the jingle recording.

Solomon: I was not.

Sarah: Cause what we did was we overlaid the audio. So we overlayed the audio with the video from that day and we had already created the audio.

And so even though you weren’t in the audio, your role in the video was important. You’re the tallest one.

Solomon: That’s true. When all else fails, height is on my side.  That was so much fun. I Like I said, even though that was our first commercial, we had a great leader, you never made us feel like infantilized or feel like we were dumb. A big complaint about people, maybe gen Z millennial people, was we often feel looked down upon by people who are older and actually has the, like, it feels very judged.

Sarah: I don’t feel like I’m older than you.

Solomon: Here’s what’s funny, I get mistaken for older all the time in a way that’s actually rude. Like when I first started at Giordonos, Someone thought I was 30. Now, 30 has never been old, but when you’re 19, it’s like…

I ordered a face cream after that I was like, this is not good. And you’re someone who like, yeah, you have like a very young

Sarah: I have a really good memory. Not for like facts and figures, but, anything emotional. So I remember what it was like to be 17 years old.

Like literally, like it was yesterday. I mean, I met my husband when I was 17 years old, hi Matt!

To me, it’s like, I could put myself back as a 17 year old, and I remember not being taken seriously. And so it’s like, I don’t want to treat other people that way.

Okay. here are my favorite things about that commercial.

Solomon: Yes.

Sarah: That day, I was expecting you to take the lead on that, but guess what happened?

Solomon: What?

Sarah: You being late did something cool. Because I watched Ian and Anneliese take the lead on that thing.

Solomon: Totaly.

Sarah: I mean, to watch them both grow as leaders and the way that they work together. Then you got there and you stepped in and you followed them, even though you’re normally a leader.

Solomon: Oh, totally.

And it just didn’t feel like, I don’t know, like when I was late, I never was like, oh gosh, you’re going to suffer without me.

You know how to curate people to be their best selves. I think that really kind of comes back to like, the best parts of entrepreneurship are not when you’re making those big sales, but it’s when you’re making those big moments.

Sarah: It’s when you’re creating.

Oh my gosh, it was so much fun. It’s such a memory.

Solomon: And then also, like, I know all of us left it feeling way more confident about our abilities.

And you were a mentor to my little brother Dominick, and my family and your family are very close. So it’s, it feels just like, you know, like a family, and that’s why this podcast is so fun. It’s like. I’m just chatting with Sarah.

Sarah: I’ve loved having you on, I think you’ve said some really great stuff. Like what you said about the growth being, you know, search after the growth.

You can’t go wrong with that.

Solomon: I think about, in this community, I think  showing people a different way. Like, I think about the way you totally have redone The Longbranch, I had no clue that place existed before you started marketing for them.

And I think about like other businesses, like Orange Leaf, for whoever you’re working for it’s it’s like, you are turning into someone who is revitalizing this community.

You are literally creating more value in this city, in this town and beyond. And it’s just like, I can’t, I’m like giddy to think about like, well, what are we going to see in like five years, 10 years, 20 years, 30 years, you just never know.

I’m not one who gets excited about businesses or anything like that. I guess I’m an artist.

Sarah: So one of my favorite books is this tiny little book that’s called “Entrepreneurship for Human Flourishing”.

Because I mean, nothing about asking for money, like in terms of helping human flourishing, volunteerism and stuff, nothing against that at all.

But is it so much easier to sell someone something so that you make a thousand dollars or ask them for a thousand dollars?

Solomon: entrepreneurship sign is the most honest form of advertising.

Right? Direct selling and speaking face to face because there’s such a subconscious visual language in advertising and marketing, which I’m sure you’ve mastered that, that’s your job to master that, but when you’re just like in the room with someone pitching to them. They can ask you whatever, they can be honest and say whatever.

And there you are relying only on your product and your personality. And there’s, there’s only, it’s all live. There’s no manipulation. There’s no whatever. It’s like, you just have to be upfront and honest with them. And if you’re not, it comes back to bite you later.

And I’ve seen it happen where I would forget something or not be thorough with what I was selling and I’d take the hit. And so I feel like a lot of people are scared of sales or going into entrepreneurship because they’re like, I could never do that. And I always, like I said, I’m like, well okay, prove it. Prove it to me that you can’t do it, because so simple. We’re always selling something, you know, we’re always trying to exchange my thing for your thing, you know, but that’s, that’s the basic of human interaction is giving and taking.

And so that’s why selling is so human. And that’s why I think that, even though we live in such an automated world and business is getting more and more automated, you’re never gonna able to automate sales and like direct selling and negotiation and rapport and stuff like that. I think that people need to learn how to sell if they’re going to thrive in this upcoming changing era.

Sarah: Okay. So this is the point of the podcast when I usually ask if there’s any marketing questions, but I want to change it up this time. So instead, I want to ask you a sales question instead.

So in the past year and a half your top three things that you have learned, or that have gone really well for you. If I was a salesman under you the top three things that I need to know.

Solomon: Rapport is the most important thing you can have with someone. Your chemistry, your relationship and your interactions.

So I am someone who I think is naturally pretty friendly, but they have to be really precise. You know, I could, as we’ve just seen, I could talk for hours to anyone. You have two minutes to make a friend. And so you have to know how to make a friend in two minutes and you have to find that thing. And I think this leads into my second point.

People like people who are either like them or they want to be like. So you have to find how are me in this 50 year old grandma alike? And I have to find or what do I have, as personality, that she would like to emulate? So what are your best features? What are your most relatable features?

And when you’re selling a product, you’re usually just selling yourself, right? Because for knives, how many different knives are there in the world for marketing, how manydifferent marketing companies are there out there? It’s like, you’re selling that. So I would say build rapport quickly, figure out how you’re like and what your best qualities are.

And the third one is how do I put this into words? It’s about like the actual sale, but, I would say over promise and over deliver. And I think that we talked about that a little bit. I talked about that before the podcast, but like you can comfortably tell someone how amazing you are at social media and marketing, and you can show them your resume. You can show them your work and be like, this is the best.

And then you deliver it and you hit it home. They’re gonna come back and they’re gonna recommend all their friends to you. And they’re gonna be like, yeah, this is amazing.

So I would say, yeah, build rapport. Connect and connect show how you’re similar, show your best features, cause it is ultimately selling personality.

And then the third one would definitely be over promise and over deliver.

Awesome. Those are great. Well, thank you for being on the podcast.

Thank you so much for having me. This is so fun.

Sarah: Okay. So what social media channel do you use the most? If people want to like connect, follow yourself?

Solomon: Instagram @SolomonJohnG.

I am on Facebook, Solomon Groothuis. Last name is spelled G R O O t H U I S and then also Twitter is SolomonJohnG. this is where it gets embarrassing. I’m not super businessy on my social media, so if you’re seeking me out in a more businessy way, you can just shoot me a DM.

And who knows? I’m sure Sarah will help me. Up my social media game, because that’s what she does. That’s her whole thing. But yeah. So yeah. Thank you everyone who is listening, and especially thank you, Sarah and Jenn, you guys have made this like the funnest day back in Iowa yet.

Sarah: Yeah, Jenn is behind the camera right now, so thanks to Jen too. So if you have found any value from this, please like, and subscribe and we will talk to you soon. Thank you very much. Bye.