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Lessons Learned From My Father
I thought I’d take a few minutes and share some of the most impactful things and lessons that I have been taught by my father over the last several years even though he’s been gone for over the last decade. My dad growing up, William Milton Carson, was my hero. A lot of kids have Michael Jordan and Nolan Ryan. During my youth years, I was a very big fan of both of those guys, both sports heroes-wise. When it came to who your true hero is, I was very honored to have a great father and a great mother. My mom is great still to this day. My father was my hero growing up. I thought I’d share a little bit with you guys about that. He’s been gone for a while. We all learned something from our fathers, whether they’re with us or not with us. It can be good or bad.
I was very blessed that my dad taught me several lessons along the way that have helped mold me and shaped my business ideas, my business tactics and helped me be who I am as a person. We are all solely responsible for who we are. It’s not anybody else’s fault. We all make decisions along the way of our lives, whether it’s in personal or education or family or business things. We all are responsible for our own decisions. You are where you’re at because of the decisions that you’ve made on a day-in, day-out basis. I’m here because of the fact that I’ve made some great decisions. I’ve made some bad decisions along the way. I’ve had some good deals. I’ve had some bad deals along the way. Nobody is perfect. Everybody backs goes 500, you have half good, half bad. The average out depends on the extreme of the good or the bad.
Down Memory Lane
Sometimes we have good ups. We have bad downs. You have to balance it out and keep working for it. I’ll give you a little bit of background. My dad was born on November 4th, 1936 in Minnesota. My grandparents were dairy farmers outside of Minneapolis in a place called Rochester, Minnesota in Stewartville area. My dad grew up one of three kids. He was there working on the farm with my grandfather and his mother passed early on from sickness. He grew up on a farm. His older brother, my Uncle Robert went off to fight in the Korean War. My dad was a junior in high school at the time. My grandfather could not handle working on the farm by himself. One of the things that my dad did is for two years he quit high school. He quit going to work on the farm to help his dad, to be there to help bring things together and make sure that everything ran well.
That takes a lot of courage when you do that, to leave your high school, to leave that and to go back away. It’s a little bit maybe more common back then than it is now but that was a big thing. When my Uncle Bob came back from the Korean War a couple of years later, my dad wanted to go back to high school. He wanted to finish his degree. He had the goal of becoming a minister. He wanted to go to seminary school and to do that, he had to graduate high school. His family was very against it. I know it’s surprising you’d be against going to high school because he’s already been out of it and working on the farm. What are you going to learn there? You’re here on the farm of the family.
Against my grandparent’s wishes, my dad went back in and went to high school. He left the farm. He left and went to Rochester. He put himself through his last year of high school. He went from a small high school to a large high school where he was a small guy, but he finished. Can you imagine going to a new high school where you’re two years older than the senior class? You’re finishing high school at nineteen, twenty when everybody else is at eighteen or seventeen. He did that. He got through high school. He paid his way. He worked whatever he could to do that, to finish it and get his high school diploma. He then went to seminary school and he did that for a couple of years. He wanted to be a minister.
Have Faith And Never Give Up
One of the big things that my dad has taught me throughout the years is he’s probably a man that has more faith than anybody else that I know. That’s not saying anything bad about people, just the fact that my dad had faith in himself when others didn’t. That’s one of the big things I think I have taken on is I’m not afraid to go on that path less traveled to get something done on my own. He did that. He went to seminary school. He went through that for a couple of years. He was graduating from there but he went back into farming. He didn’t like what some of his buddies were doing in the ministry going out and trying to get big churches and big cars. That’s not what this is about.
If you’re going to be in seminary, your goal is to help people with their faith and walk along with Christ. He didn’t do that. He went back on the farm. He bought a farm. He went back into dairy farming, but he had his diploma at least. That says a lot about a guy. He didn’t stop. He didn’t give up. He kept churning and churning. That one of the big things is not to give up. It was one of the big lessons learned from my father. Never give up, keep working and keep working forward and get rock and rolling. He married. He had seven kids with his first wife. They got divorced years later. He ends up marrying my mom. I’m the oldest, the second of three.
My dad had a total of ten kids. We moved to Corpus Christi, Texas from Minnesota when I was young like two or three. My dad had bad back working on the farm. He had two fused discs. He could barely walk at a point. He had to get out of the cold. He and at that time, the four of us before my brother was born, moved to Corpus Christi, Texas away from everybody else. The whole family was in Minnesota. We moved to south Texas away from everybody else. You don’t have the support systems. You don’t have the family around. You don’t have the built-in babysitters. He went down there on his own and worked some different odd jobs. He worked in a hardware store because he liked working with his hands. He worked for a paint company at first. He sold water heaters door-to-door for a while.
He worked for a big paint company. It was open. He then worked for one hardware company and then worked for another one. He was working his way up and became the general manager of this big company one day and a week later, they closed the store. They closed the whole company. They went out of business. Dad said, “Enough with that.” I remember this is right where I’m wrapping up my third year. My mom was working in the hospital delivering meals and stuff like that at Spohn Hospital Corpus Christi down off of Palmero Street. I remember I was moving there. It’s a big two-storey house. I remember my dad giving the idea of driving around there because he was still friends with all the people in the South Texas area, these other hardware companies.
You get to know your network of people when you’re shifting lumber and hardware from big distributors into smaller mom and pop companies, small institutions. My dad decided that he wanted to open a hardware store. My dad decided that he wanted to open up this company in this little small town called Ingleside Texas with about 3,500 people. He went out and talked to people there. He went back and talked to his dad. My grandparent has moved south to be closer to his grandkids. He took the loan out from my grandfather to launch Ingleside Hardware. It was on the main street in Ingleside, Texas. In the summer, the three months before he opened up in September of ’88, I graduated in ’95. We did this my fourth-grade year. It would’ve been ’87. I remember that summer going with my mom and dad driving across 30 minutes or 45 minutes from Corpus Christi to Ingleside, Texas and helping my dad and mom in the hardware store getting everything ready to roll from pricing to putting up shelves to putting together lawn mowers. I was slave labor. I was the guy that had to do all the projects because I was young.
They were doing a lot of other things and I’m the one putting stuff together, peeling stickers and putting price tags on everything and making sure everything is good. Roughly about nine, ten years, my dad ran that hardware store. I worked at the hardware store on the weekends. During the summers, I would be there. From the time I was in the fourth grade, I go running a register, cut keys, cut glass. I learned a lot about my work ethic in those years. We would work six days a week at the hardware store and the seventh day we would do everything in Ingleside because when we moved over, he worked six days a week. The seventh day is when you should be going to church or doing other things. All the people are resting, you had to do this stuff at the house. We had a big yard.
I grew up with a push mower mowing on the weekends and getting my PhD in post-hole digging. I joke about that. That was one of the biggest things that helped me with my work ethic was doing all those things on the weekend. By the time I was in the fourth grade on, I had started working for other people too, odd jobs during the slow times, mow lawns, putting up a fence, clearing brush and all that stuff. That was the lesson that my dad taught me. I was like, “Make sure you give good value. If somebody hires you, make sure you do a good job. If somebody hires you to do something, make sure you deliver it. Make sure you do go above and beyond. Don’t try to get the least amount done for somebody. Try to do the best you can in getting stuff done.”
Little Things Add Up
One of the lessons that I learned from my dad is that a lot of the times little things add up in a big way. The last week of December, that’s not usually a favorite time for most people, especially in our hardware store. You have the end of the year inventory because you’ve got to figure out what you’ve got an inventory, you’ve got do it for your books going forward and you’re counting everything. You’re counting nails. You’re weighing every nut, bolt, washer, galvanized pipe, threads and couplings. I was responsible for a big chunk of that Christmas vacation. I wasn’t off having fun. I was in a hardware store working and getting my hands all dirty from counting nuts, bolts, washers and having to put a number on it.
I hated it because there was this one big aisle on both sides is all the hardware. My dad taught me a lesson early on. He said, “Scott, this is one of the most important aisles in the store.” It was blowing smoke up my tail telling me, “You’ve got to do it.” Everybody else was running through their aisles fast because they got bigger items. I had all these small things because this is one of the most important aisles if not the most important. I’m like, “What do you mean by that?” He goes, “Scott, do you know how much of this hardware stuff that we sell on a monthly or annual basis? This accounts for about 40% of our sales in the store is this aisle alone.” I’m like, “What?” He goes, “Yeah.”
Now in Ingleside, if you don’t know, it’s right across the bay from Corpus Christi, Texas. Oxychem and DuPont refineries are down there. Reynolds aluminum had a big refinery down there, but it was also the site of a company called Bullwinkle that built these large offshore oil derricks. You’re probably wondering, “What does this have to do with notes, Scott?” I’m getting to the point here. They would come in and buy boxes and boxes of nuts, bolts and washers, welding rods and things like that from my dad. It was a great account my dad had. He would buy a lot of stuff in, order for the guys and they’d come and pick it up. It’s millions and millions of nuts and bolts on one of these old derricks and that accounted for the thing.
He taught me one thing early on that a lot of your businesses are made up of small little things that you want to make sure to get things done. Little things can each apart. If you don’t have your nuts and bolts tightened on tight, it can loosen away and can break it up. We’ve all been guilty of letting some of our nuts and bolts loosen up. You’ve got to keep things tight. Little things go do go along the way. They do add up. Why not think of that? You’ve got to heap your eye and little things along with the big picture as well, too. The big picture’s great, but you got to keep looking at some of the little things. The little things will add up. That’s one of the big lessons. It’s probably the second most important lesson that my dad taught me growing up is to make sure you focus on little things.
Do The Things That Need To Be Done
Try to do the little things well. Now you’re not going to be an expert at doing something first off, but as you get better. You do it again and again, you’ll get better at what you do. You get better at making sure everything’s clean, crisp, nice and tight. If you can do that, take a little extra time to do that, they’ll go a long way. One of the lessons that have always been important, my dad would go back to a story talking about, “I’m going back to high school, starting a hardware store and moving south to take care of it.” One of the big lessons he taught me was that you have to do it. I mentioned early on that we’re all a product of our decisions we’ve made from day-in, day-out basis. Some good, some bad, but you are responsible and you have to do what you want to do. If you want to set a goal for yourself, nobody is going to do it for you. You have to go out and do it. If you want to open a business or become a real estate investor or get a degree or start a podcast or rescue cats or whatever it may be, there’s a broad variety of things there. You have to be the one that does it. Nobody else is going to do it for you.
If you want something to accomplish, you can bring on people to help assist you, but if it’s your baby, if it’s your thing, they’re not going to take as much of an interest or as passionate about it because they’re going to learn from me. If you’re not passionate about something, your team, your staff is not going to be passionate about it. If you’re not doing the things that need to be done, they’re not going to do it. That’s the thing that my dad taught me most, “Scott, you are responsible where you want to go. If you want to go to college, it’s up to you.” We didn’t make a lot of money on the hardware store in a small town of 3,500 people, but we survived. We always had plenty to eat. We always had clothes on our bag. We always had to be successful. We didn’t have the most luxurious things. We have the newest car. I remember dad driving us to school in a white Dodge van or the Astro van that come to the Carson bus.
My dad taught me that you have to do it. You have to be responsible for your actions. That was one of the most important things. I believe I’ve done saying, “The buck stops with me.” I’ve screwed up or I’ve done things or especially when I set myself to doing something, I go out and get it done. That’s one thing that’s always been me is that I’m the one that’s going to have to do it. Nobody’s going to be able to help me to do it. It’s something I’m passionate about. People around me will be passionate about it, but it’s up to me ultimately to go and make it happen. I tell that to all of you out there, if you want to raise capital, you want to close deals or you want to make money. It’s not up to your boss. It’s not up to your sister, your spouse. It’s ultimately up to you. There are no excuses. You’re responsible. It is up to you is one of the big lessons my father taught me.
Always Be Fair
My dad was always accused of not charging enough for his work. There were some slow times in a hardware store, especially in the middle of the summer when it’s 100 degrees outside. My dad always loved working with wood. I remember from the time before he had a hardware store. He always had lay there. He always had tools and he was working on his hobby. His hobby was working with wood, making swings, gliders and some of those things. That became part of the stuff that was selling in our hardware store. He made these amazing gliders. It’s up in 50 states and multiple countries from people all over the years doing that. People come in and he could charge a whole lot more for what he did but people came back and back again to him because he was fair.
He’s like, “I’m making money on this. It’s been profitable for me as it is. I don’t need to try to charge through the nose because anyone should still have a whole lot less.” Part of what he did was not the enjoyment of stuff, it was a side hustle in the hardware store that makes some money. It was passion. He loved working with his hands. He loved the excitement that he saw from people when they come in and order a special thing for their wife or order Christmas decorations, wooden decorations that would go on their lawn. That was one of the coolest things dad would always do is drive it around Ingleside Texas and around the community and other areas, seeing some of the stuff that he had built in other people’s lawn. The joy that they took in that.
That’s one of the things that are important. I always remember thinking about my dad to be fair. I’ve tried to do that with our education and our coaching. I try to make sure it’s a fair price. Not overcharge but give value, be fair. Have somebody come in, they come in as a student, make sure to give them the tools they need to get done. Make sure to give them the things that you need. None of this blows smoke up your ass or upsells. We do some upselling on things, but we have obviously a funnel for what we do with our education side. Be fair and we’ve always tried to be fair with people. I’m proud to say that a lot of our students feel that way, that our stuff is great. The stuff that we put out is good. It’s fairly priced. We’re making some profit on it, but it’s fairly priced. I’ve always been a believer that somebody wants to dig a ditch. If you give them a shovel, they’ll go on and dig it. I can tell you that because I’ve shoveled enough ditches in my day. I dug enough ditches in Ingleside around the South Texas community with a variety of things.
I’m always trying to be fair with things. I got plenty of calluses from a boy from doing all that stuff, but working hard, being fair to your clients, your customers, your audience and go out there and make some things happen. Showing up, I can remember in my ear “show up, be there and be on time.” I remember many a time, probably at least once a month, twice a month sometimes especially in a small town when you run the hardware store, if somebody has an issue, they’re calling you at night. It was a running joke. Occasionally we get a phone call on a Saturday evening or at night, Sunday when we’re supposed to be off from people in the town that had an emergency. They had a pipe break. Their kid ran over it with a lawnmower. They had an emergency that popped up of some sort.
I remember dad and us going into the hardware store in our van driving ten or fifteen minutes to get there, opening up for a client on our day off to help them out. They always appreciate that. People appreciate the little things that you do to go above and beyond. First and foremost, if you show up, that’s half the battle. I can remember my dad taking a few sick days to close the hardware store, a few days to close the store. He showed up Monday through Saturday, even through illness, being sick and struggling with his eyes and diabetes. He and my mom showed up on a regular basis. Only a couple of days he closed it in a week when my brother was hit by a car. He was in the hospital and a couple of days when he was sick. My mom was traveling and could not be there. He was in for surgery. Either you open late a little bit, but most of the time I remember my dad showing up.
If you think about that. My dad didn’t have a lot of staff. He brought on a couple of people part-time. We had a guy who would come in occasionally, but a lot of times they relied on us. If he was sick, mom would be there. If mom was sick, dad would definitely be there. I have to give a big shout out to my mom as well because as my dad’s diabetes was getting a little bit worse, mom realized that the hardware store was not going to be the answer. She started to go back to school as I remember sophomore high school, her going back to college, twenty years when she graduated high school and became an RN and doing the things to do that. She became the bread earner when my dad’s health got bad. They closed the hardware in my Junior year.
My dad then opened a crafts store next door and did that and showed up on a daily basis, day-in, day-out. Showing up is one of the most important things and being consistent. That’s one of the things that we try to do here with the podcast is be consistent on a daily basis as best we can. Trying to make sure we crank out things. I would love to say “We did it Monday through Friday, every day.” We ever did it about four days a week and we get some things out. Sometimes we’re good. Sometimes we’ve got a bit of a gap as things are getting recorded and other things. We try to show up. I can tell you that if you show up on a consistent basis to your real estate club, if you show up on a consistent basis to your job on time, not leaving early, not judging the client. If you show up to your audience, you show up to your peers, you show up on a regular basis, that’s half the battle in itself.
On Wednesday night, I have our Syntex Podcasters Meetup. I looked at the meetup group. If we send some marketing out throughout the week and there’s one person that has RSVP’d. That one person was me. I’m not going to have anybody there. I don’t know. Should I cancel it? No, I need to go. There’s no excuse. It’s nearby the office. I went and showed up there. Five people showed up beside me, a total of six people. It’s not the biggest, but it was such a very productive thing. That’s one of the things I want to make sure to share with your guys. Showing up is important. Being there is important. Attending things is important. It’s easier to sit at home and watch the NBA finals. It’s easier to sit at home and watch Grey’s Anatomy or ESPN, but those things will be there.
What won’t always be there is the opportunity that you’re missing if you don’t show up. If you don’t show up, what eventually happens is somebody else will show up in some form or fashion. As long as you’re there showing up, being there, consistent, being there on a regular basis. You’re not going to be perfect every time but at least you’re there. That goes such a long way in finding any type of success, whether it’s going to school, showing up to your classes. As long as I would show up to my classes, I’d make A’s. If I didn’t show my classes, I didn’t do very well. Showing up, coming to the office, being present, reaching out and showing up as a variety of different things, especially if you have a full-time job, you’re doing a side hustle, showing up in the email blast out and social media posts. It’s making offers.
Just being there is one of the most important things that you can do with your tribe. We all have a tribe, whether it’s investors or people in our real estate club, your neighbors and things like that. Sometimes you showing up is the motivation that somebody else needs. Sometimes you show up with a smile on your face with your hand out and say, “How are you doing?” It’s what other people need. That’s an important thing. That’s one of the biggest lessons my dad shared with me and showing up. I can remember the years, so many stories of people showing up at the hardware store to see my dad and see my mom. Just to come in and say, “Hello.” Stop by and visit. It goes a long way. Not to be there to buy something, but to be there and say, “How’s it going? it’s good to see you.”
That’s one of the things you want to build in your tribe and building on is “How’s it going? It’s a good chance to see you.” Showing up is a variety of things. These days you don’t have to travel as much. You can do things online like this. You can do webinars, conferences, Instagram TV or Facebook Lives. That’s one way of showing up in your audience. I have to give a big shout out to people that reach out to me is when I was gone for three and a half weeks. We did have stuff that lives stream that we recorded. It was great seeing people respond back and say, “It’s great to see you again. It’s good to see you back. I’m glad to have your back. That says a lot. For those that reached out, thank you so much. It does mean a lot that you would appreciate with me being gone for a few weeks.
Live Your Life And Make Memories
My dad also instilled in me as I remember growing older, getting married and graduating from college, I remember how proud my dad was when I graduated college. I did it on my own because they didn’t have any money to give to me for education. My mom and dad, they adopted their oldest grandkids and they became part of the family. Tim and Tammy, we were a family of seven from the fifth or sixth grade on. This is a big family yet seven miles of fee, that’s a lot. You’re not going to the movies. You have a big garden. You’re doing the things you need to do to survive and put the money to the right thing.
One of the biggest things I can remember is when I was right around my father. It was around the weekend and my sister was getting married. We’re running around grabbing the barbecue and things like that for the rehearsal dinner and stuff like that. My dad’s health wasn’t the greatest. Me, being the oldest son and at one time, I would think I was the closest. I was my parents’ favorite. It’s funny, but the fact of visiting my dad and talking with him about life. He goes, “Scott, life is all about making memories. You got to live your life first, but you got to live it. You can’t be in the rat race. You got to live it. You got to make those memories because those are what goes with you long-term.
No one will remember the bonus you got. Nobody remembers this sale that you got and that one extra person. What they will remember is the time that you showed up for your family. You showed up for your loved ones and you lived and made memories of your family. That’s one of the big things that I want to reiterate to you guys that are reading is show up on a consistent basis to your friends and your family. Show up, live and make those memories. Take the extra time to smell the roses. Take the extra time to take that one, take that extra time to give that extra compliment. You’re going to make somebody’s life better but also work hard. If you don’t play hard, you’re going to be dull.
You’re going to run into that entrepreneurial burnout as we discussed with Aaron Young in an earlier podcast. You have to realize everybody that life is full of memories. You are not in this alone. If you’re in this alone, it’s probably because you are hiding out. You’re not getting out talking with people. You’re not sharing. You’re not showing up. Don’t do that. Get up, live, make some memories, learn to laugh at yourself. It’s one of the big things my dad said, “The sooner you learn to laugh at yourself and be stupid or be silly, do it. Your life will be so much happier. It will take away power from people that want to make fun of you. Let them make fun of you. It was stupid. It’s goofy. I get my f my sense of humor from my father a lot of times.
I can remember coming home and my dad would be goofy, walking around the house with boots on. He would throw a wig on, my mom’s dress over or whatever like that and walk around being silly, being funny, taking dried silicone and putting up his nose like it was a booger. Just goofing around with people. One of the moments and it’s an embarrassing memory, but my senior year in high school, I was a team captain. We were in a good place. We won a game. I was getting ready to go over my girlfriend’s house. The game is over. My dad comes into the locker room to get me. I’m like, “Dad, can I get $20 from you to grab something to eat on my way over to the house.” He’s like, “I need a kiss.” I’m like, “What?” That was one of the things us kids always did before we went to bed. We gave our parents hugs. We gave them a kiss on the cheek.
I was always saying, “Good night, dad. Good night, mom. I love you?” It’s the same thing vice versa. That goes a long way. That’s showing up for your loved ones. My dad’s like, “I need a kiss.” I’m like, “There are my head coach and all my buddies like ‘Carson is giving his daddy a kiss.” Sure enough, kiss in the cheek here comes the $20, whatever.” You have to laugh at things like that. You got to be able to laugh at yourself. If you’re embarrassed by something, laugh it off. Everybody’s embarrassed. Everybody puts on their pants one leg at a time. Everybody passes gas. Everybody burps. Everybody has got those embarrassing things. It’s okay to laugh about life.
It’s okay to laugh about the idiosyncrasies that we all have in life and business. Those are fun memories, things to laugh at. Those are some of the things that I probably miss the most about my father. I hear my dad in my ear all the time on things that we’re doing and things I’m doing good on or things I’m not doing good on. I hear my father when we’re making decisions or choosing things, I hear my dad in my ear. It’s always a good thing to hear dad and some stuff. I was very blessed to have such a good father who lived quite a while. My dad was 40 when I was born. It’s hard to believe that I’m the age, I’m a little bit older. My dad was 40 when I was born. It’s interesting. He ended up having two more kids after that. He passed when he was 69. I was 25. He passed in his sleep. He’s heart suffered as he got older in life. His heart was only pumping a little bit. He had a heart attack. One night he got up to go to the bathroom as a lot of people with diabetes do at 2:00 in the morning. His heart gave out on him. Mom jumped out of bed, went over and rolled him over. My dad had made peace with death a long time ago.
Passion For Marketing
Whenever he said, “When God is ready for me, I’m ready. I have nothing to fear. I give up this body and move on to something bigger and better.” When my mom rolled my father over and his last breath went out of him, he had this huge grin on his face because he knew it was his time. We always do that. One of the biggest things my dad always told me is don’t be afraid to make memories. You can’t take those with you but live, be ready and do as much as you can in a day-in, day-out basis. Live each life to its fullest. I’ve learned so many great lessons from my father. One of the things I learned from my father, indirectly, it goes back to a hardware store. That’s why I have such a passion for marketing. My dad was great at his job.
It’s a different timeframe 30 plus years ago with marketing and things like that. It’s the old way of advertising and flyers and things like that. I never thought my dad marketed enough in the hardware store. It’s hard to do that when you’re trying to do it all and you only have part-time things. As he added people later on the years there, it became more successful. He went to a hardware show. I would be running the hardware store for the weekend as a young kid with an older guy there. I make sure I didn’t get held up or robbed, but you have to realize that the lifeblood of entrepreneurs is easier these days. It’s not how good a product you have, it’s how good it works. It doesn’t mean anything if you don’t know how to market it, if you don’t know how to sell it, if you don’t know how to share that with the world around you.
If you’ve got dreams, you’ve got passion and you’ve got things you’re working towards in the long run with your business, your real estate, your notes, whatever it might be out there, you’ve got to learn to market it. I don’t care how old you are, whether you’re six or 66. I don’t care what your excuse is. These days, we are all learning and the learning curve of new phones and new products. If you think about it, we had the cassette tapes when I was young and that turned into CDs and that’s turned into the iPod. Now it’s turned into everything. I remember working and getting my first cell phone, not until I was in sophomore in college, this big Motorola brick.
Technology is moving so fast and if you want to stay abreast of the situation, you got to learn what’s going on. I had to get a new cell phone. I love it. I should’ve been doing this a long time ago. I was hesitant to do it because I had to learn something new. It was a new phone, I learned some new words, everything at it. A lot of people, if you embrace that aspect of always learning and doing something new, you may gripe and bitch and moan about it the entire time you’re doing it. At some point, you’re going realize, “I should’ve done this a lot sooner.” Marketing is one of the biggest lessons that I learned that my father didn’t teach me, but I learned from watching my parents working their butts off and their work ethics. Work ethic will get you there, but marketing will take you to a whole different level.
A quick recap, nuts and bolts, little things add up in a big way in your business. You are solely responsible. You have to go do it. Nobody else is going to do it for you. Nobody’s going to give you a handout. You have to go do it. You got to show up on a regular basis. It’s critical. Showing up is half the battle. Be fair in what you do, don’t try to squeeze every penny out of everything. If it’s not a win-win situation, you’re losing. If you’re on the winning side and somebody is on the losing side, you lose because the fact is that person, that client, whatever, will not come back to you. They go somewhere else because they think and know that they’ve lost. Nobody wants to feel ripped off.
Make some memories and live, go out, make some memories, live and you’ll feel a lot better off that. Those are the five biggest things that my father taught me, that I’ve taken with me as an entrepreneur, as a business owner, as a person, as an adult and as a man. When my dad passed, full church, two police departments, Ingleside and wanted to escort my father’s hearse to the cemetery. There are many stories trickled in after my dad passed. I went down to help my mom close out the craft store. They closed our hardware store a few years ago and dad opened up right around the corner the Carson’s Country Crafts.
Many memories came on the project my dad was working on, people came in and came in when they’d find out that my dad had passed and share the stories out. I came in and somebody needed a piece of wood and he said, “Use this, cut it.” He doesn’t even charge. He was doing it over and over for people coming by. I have this boat compass that a shrimper came in one day and needed the money and was trying to sell. He needs some money for gas or milk and eggs and for his family. My dad bought the compass off of him. I still have it to this day. It’s one of the unique things that I have. I always try to keep a mindset of, “Try to stay on your compass. Storms will arrive. Storms will come. Hurricanes will come. They’ll throw you off for a while. You may have to stop what you’re doing for a little while. The bail water, you may need to go ashore for a little bit before you go back out to sea and go fishing again. Know where you’re at, know where you wanted to go because eventually, you’ll get there if you stick to it.”
That’s one thing that my father gave me before he passed. It’s one of my favorite things. I still have it to this day. It’s a very valuable thing to me of the compass and sticking to where you need to go. Trying to stick in that straight line if you can. We know it’s not going to happen all off of the straight line. Keep your mind and eye on the prize and use your internal compass, your internal gut to guide you in that way and you’ll eventually get there. It was one of the biggest things I could say. Do yourself a favor, if you’ve got somebody who’s been a big figure in your life, a male father, a father figure of some sort, make sure to say thank you to them. Send them a message, a text message.
If you are not on the best of terms with your father, do yourself a favor, pick up the phone and call your dad. I guarantee you nothing will call him a rip in the fabric than a phone call and saying, “Dad, I want to call him and tell you I love you.” I wish I could still do that to this day because when people ask, “What would you do if you had an hour with anybody?” That’s the hour of the day I’d spend with my father. Go make some memories with your business. Thank you for tuning to this show. Hopefully, this episode wasn’t too sappy for you. I think it’s important. Our fathers or father figures play an integral role in helping develop who we are. My dad has had a huge role in the man that I am now. Guys and gals, go out and make something happen. We’ll see you all at the top.