Oh to be a fortune hunter. Many of us aspire to be make our fortune and make a success of ourselves and keeping grounded is crucial and following advice from people who have done it before.
Nathaniel Schooler 0:24
Today, I’m interviewing someone called Lyndon Wood and he’s the CEO of constructaquote.com which he started when he was 19 years old. In 1990, he was struggling financially and he had to live out of his car. He landed a commission only insurance job. He had no experience in the industry, but needed to support his family.
So nine months later, he decided to take control of his life and his career and he started Construct A Quote and persuaded insurance companies to trust him and then he became a millionaire at 26 years old. By the time he was 28 he was a multi millionaire; he’s a serial entrepreneur and he’s launched lots of other businesses, including Xbroker, Sunzu and CuriousHow. And in 2012 he wrote a book called Diary of a Fortune Hunter.
Lyndon also had a Sky TV show based on his book called Fortune Hunter TV when he interviewed all sorts of successful entrepreneurs around the world about building businesses and startups and this kind of stuff.
It’s a great interview, check it out! Have a listen please make sure you drop me a review and share with your friends!
We’re going to talk a bit about innovative thinking, creativity and critical thinking and sort of anything in between because Lyndon’s involved with a lot of different businesses and I’m looking forward to learning more about him.
Nice to see you Lyndon.
Lyndon Wood 1:54
Thanks for the podcast invite, brilliant.
Nathaniel Schooler 1:57
So in terms of your your career, I know you’ve been you’ve been involved with an insurance business, haven’t you? You’re the CEO. And you’ve been doing that for quite a quite a long time.
But technology is a big part of your of your business, isn’t it?
Lyndon Wood 2:12
Yes. I mean, I set up Moorhouse Group Ltd group and constructaquote.com which came out a little bit later. But at the age of 19, over 29 years ago now, in August 1990.
Always majored on the sort of tech front or sort of fell into that about 15-16 years ago. So right at the forefront of it always sounds a bit bizarre; because only 16 years ago.
But people were still using modems back then. So my first transactional website which was all clunky but it looked great at the time. I couldn’t put any images on there because modems just wouldn’t load them! 🙂
Nathaniel Schooler 2:53
That horrible note em noise I mean, some of the people listening to this don’t even know what a modem is right?
Lyndon Wood 2:58
I actually I actually miss it.
Nathaniel Schooler 3:00
You missed the noise.
Lyndon Wood 3:01
Yeah, there’s quite an addictive noise.
Nathaniel Schooler 3:04
When it was quite a calming noise wasn’t it? Because when you heard the noise going you knew that something was at least happening right?
Lyndon Wood 3:11
Yeah a poltergeist!
Nathaniel Schooler 3:18
Classic, so in terms of your constructaquote.com are you still involved with that?
Lyndon Wood 3:25
Yes the business trades well, UK Top 100 specialist broker constructaquote.com is the online you know buy your policy online for trades people and consultants for their professional indemnity insurance and so on. That’s there and Moorhouse Group are for larger organisations of 2 million plus turnovers.
Nathaniel Schooler 3:47
That’s that’s really great. So with within your businesses in terms of sort of innovative thinking and creativity but where do you begin with that.
Lyndon Wood 3:59
This is an easy one, I begin. And this is quite interesting, actually, when you’re trying to come up with whether it’s not not massive business it is. But the creative aspect of creative thinking for marketing or whatever. Just imagine this, if you were given a planet and it was empty, and it was all of yours.
What would you make it look like?
What would it be?
Would you still build houses?
Would you make cars?
Would you still drill for oil?
Because when you ask people that question, I’ve tried doing it myself. It’s really difficult to answer, because we’re used to certain things like a house and like a car and so on. But it gets the creative juices really flowing,
Nathaniel Schooler 4:41
So it opens up your mind to the sort of possibilities of what you actually want to do, right?
Lyndon Wood 4:48
Yeah, and it goes deeper than that. It actually it actually makes a question what you want out of life as well. Because you think, well, I wouldn’t have a car I would walk everywhere because it’d be healthier.
Then you start thinking “So why do I have a car?”
It’s that type of question.
I’ve never thought about it like that!
Lyndon Wood 5:07
A blank canvas what would you make it look like?
What would your planet look like?
What would your version of Earth look like.
Nathaniel Schooler 5:15
That’s really interesting because because I’ve been thinking about you know my perfect day. So I spent a bit of time talking with a friend of mine he’s Britain’s leading hypnotist and he’s moved now into subconscious success.
He helps people to get the back of their brain in touch with the front of their brain so it works right in essence, and delivers the results for their lives. And he’s got this perfect day process that I followed in his in his book goes through:-
What bed are you in?
What actually does it look like when you wake up in the morning you open the curtains, what does it look like outside?
But what you’re saying is, is even deeper than that. It’s just opening up the brain to all possibilities isn’t it?
Lyndon Wood 6:04
Yeah and and you know if you enter that thought process of the planet sort of scenario; if you enter it from a business perspective and think.
“How do I want my planet to look?
If it was a planet to do with marketing what would it look like?
What sort of people would be on there?
What tools what I have on there?
You can apply it to anything and then you can apply to your own life.
What would my life look like if I had a clean slate?
What would I do?
Is this the career, is this the business I want?
Am I enjoying it?
Would I you know would I have a car?
Would I would have such a big house when it’s just me living in it?
You know, it’s that type of thing.
Nathaniel Schooler 6:47
I’m just sitting here nodding away. Yeah.
Lyndon Wood 6:51
Would I build houses on the planet? Would I do that?
Would I drill for oil or would I just live under a tent and grill lots of organic veggies?
Would alcohol exist?
You know what would you want it to look like?
But the I think the message is loud and clear on that one is a great way to get the juices flowing.
Nathaniel Schooler 7:11
Yeah, that’s really that’s really interesting.
So this is applicable to anybody, right?
Whether they’re creative or not creative, and in any, any aspect of their life, right?
Lyndon Wood 7:24
No, absolutely. And you haven’t got to be in business to use it either.
Nathaniel Schooler 7:28
It’s so relevant to that perfect day process. But actually, it takes it to a different level altogether, doesn’t it?
Lyndon Wood 7:34
It’s relevant to happiness.
Nathaniel Schooler 7:38
Well, that’s, that’s the most important thing, isn’t it? I mean, what, you know, what’s the point of going into business for example, or going to work if it’s not making you happy, right?
I mean, if you’re not doing something that makes you happy, then potentially it’s time sort of change what you’re doing and come up with something new and I think being creative and innovative actually helps you to do that, doesn’t it?
Lyndon Wood 8:03
Completely. I’ve always brought my kids up and said this them repeatedly over over many years and I’ve got a 26 year old a 24 year old an 18 year old boy and a 15 year old girl. And I always say this them your Father works hard so that you can work hard on things that you enjoy and making a difference in the world for the better.
Yeah. Now, of course, now their older, it does bite you on the back side a bit, because they they live them words so good old Dad just funds it.
Nathaniel Schooler 8:40
Lyndon Wood 8:41
My son’s a drummer, he’s a musician do what he’s passionate about. This is what I’ve always wanted to my kids. My daughter’s into photography and creative things. And she loves that, my other daughter studying psychology and that is what she wants to do and has a passion for it.
So it’s great to see your kids doing things that they enjoy. And where they want to spend this or careers and lives rather than having to do something that they don’t like, which just makes it lives miserable.
Nathaniel Schooler 9:11
I totally agree hundred percent it’s it’s amazing how you can just go down the wrong route though and you and sometimes you just you just end up there and you and you one day you just…you will either have a nervous breakdown you just look at yourself in the mirror and you don’t like who you are.
Lyndon Wood 9:27
Oh you know what we know lots of people that are in jobs and they’re miserable on there because in work 8/9/10 hours a day in in something they are not enjoying and they are stuck with the traditional mortgage and some car finance and they go on their two holidays year they could just going to save galore for.
Do you know what I mean?
And they’re just not happy people. But they are stuck in this financial prison. Yeah, because they have the mortgage, they have the debt and they have the two kids and the wife and everything else, you know, and it’s sad really because.
You get one shot, you get one shot at life and and you just have to sometimes make that step up and make that big change and make your life happen because no one or anything is just going to land on your lap. You have to make it happen.
Nathaniel Schooler 10:13
Yeah, I like that about you. I’ve asked you lots of questions was we was we were getting to know each other a bit on Twitter and some of the advice you’ve given me In fact, all of it has been it’s been really good advice it’s up to me whenever I took it or not.
Lyndon Wood 10:26
But when I say all I can do and like I say to people I went through a phase many years you know you build yourself up and you build up your own ego to it to a point.
And we’ve all got a bit of ego. I hate ego,but we all need it you know and you build yourself up to a point where you start you know sharing what you’ve learnt from your experiences; but actually you end up not sharing it and you see this in other successful individual. They’ll tell you they’ll tell you things; I went off that because actually when you’re telling somebody something; it’s a bit like a poke in the chest yeah and if I tell you how to do a podcast.
You could very well sit back and go well you just knocked my confidence because now I feel I’m doing it all wrong.
Whereas if I share with you my experience of doing a Podcast is very different so now I share what I know and it’s up to people whether they want to use it don’t use it, but I share my knowledge I share my experiences rather than telling people my experiences.
Nathaniel Schooler 11:31
But yeah I think that’s the way to go. I’ll tell you something quite funny, I’ve got a friend and he’s quite independently wealthy; you know he doesn’t he doesn’t have to work and he said right come come down to the yacht.
You know I mean he’s got three airplanes, they’re they’re only small ,you know, they’re not yeah but even so three airplanes and a big yacht. It’s the biggest yacht in the harbor.
And he said:- “Come down to the yacht, I’ll get your food and we just stay over and hang out and stuff.”
This was one of the biggest lessons that I’ve that I’ve actually had in the past few years he drove us to test goes we we went to test goes we bought us to ready meals and and we’re talking like the one pound ready meals yeah yeah inquiry ready meals right yeah and we went back to the boat and he put mine in the microwave and he gave me my food.
I sat there and I’ve wolfed it down because it’s doing a lot of training at the time and I was really hungry I’ve eating this whole meal and he’s sitting there eating his and I’ve looked at him I said, I’m really hungry have you got anything else and he said and he said I’m on a diet you can have half of mine.
But the whole point is that the problem that I see a lot of the time in in you know, with people is they just wasting money on stuff, they don’t even need to impress people they don’t even like.
Lyndon Wood 13:06
I built myself to get to a fortunate position have been able to buy things like cars and whatever but I’m why not. I worked my balls off!
Nathaniel Schooler 13:13
You don’t do it though Lyndon to impress other people you do it because you enjoy it, there is a difference.
Lyndon Wood 13:19
That is a big difference and don’t get me wrong many years ago probably a decade or a bit more, I would do it to you know look at me I’ve got I’ve got a Bentley I’ve got a whatever you know car whatever.
It was that ego buzz of driving around and people looking, you know, but then very quickly you sort of go beyond that because that’s not really being human and you know so you buy these things because you enjoy them.
I love the iconic thing of a Ferrari or the the history of a Bentley, you know, I just enjoy the vehicles. Don’t get me wrong I’m not I’m not into the engines. I just I just like what they stand for you know.
Nathaniel Schooler 13:55
You buy into the brand don’t you in essence.
Lyndon Wood 14:01
You know, I shortened my life by 10 years by being in business, I employ well over 100 people. I pay stupid tax. Why can’t I have a nice car?
Nathaniel Schooler 14:13
You’ve earned it. And but the thing is, though, nowadays there’s a change in how people look at wealthy and successful people. And in fact, I think we’re a lot more American than we were 10 years ago.
Lyndon Wood 14:28
Nathaniel Schooler 14:29
You know, looking at you and going look at that rich tosser. He’s got you know…but now people will come up to you probably and say, How did you manage to get that?
Lyndon Wood 14:38
That is the difference between the UK and America. UK I’m starting a business and people trying to help you with your business then you become remotely success when they see you moving to a bigger house or buying a nicer car and going on four holidays year instead of two or one and then they get a bit envious and some get a bit jealous and some of your friends sort of back off and disappear.
In America. If you make a million dollars or $2 million, they want to know how you did it.
And you know what? Very rarely do I get asked by any UK person. How did you do it?
Nathaniel Schooler 15:15
I always ask you how you do these things. Yeah, yeah.
Lyndon Wood 15:19
But no one has asked me, probably not even you, actually, how did you manage to build your business to that size? How did you do it?
Nathaniel Schooler 15:26
All right. I’m going to ask you now, how did you do it?
Lyndon Wood 15:31
It’s about deployment of the cash that comes in your door, right. This is what happens. And I’m sharing this because obviously, I’ve consulted with many, many startups medium, even large organisations sat as non exec. and that the rest of it that is the ego bit done.
This is what happens. You start business with a passion got an idea, starting a business. Lyndon, any advice?
Yeah, got some advice, off they go do their business, then they start getting some cash in, then they are paying their mortgage and whatever. And the cash is usually a little bit more than what they were paid as a salary somewhere else. So they start saving some money, then they start employing someone. Now the money is going out; that somebody is not bringing in the sales like they were because they think I’m earning 1000 pounds a month.
If I employ some I can earn two grand a month. That’s not reality. Reality is the second person will bring in six or 700 a month. Yeah, so they won’t double up on you because, you have the motivation and everything else they don’t. Yeah, right.
And then they say:- “Actually, I was making more money on my own.”
So they get rid of that one person and go back to themselves and they stay there forever. And that is why we are a nation of one man bands, right?
And there’s nothing wrong with that if that’s what you want. Yeah, so it’s about how you deploy the cash that comes in.
Do you employ the person?
Are you maximised with your own sales ability?
In other words, are you dealing with all the stuff that you can possibly deal with?
If not, then don’t employ the person. You put your money into marketing and getting more because you’re you are your best salesperson.
And then when you’re maxed out the next bit of cash, that comes in, then you employ someone.
So it’s how you deploy your capital.
Nathaniel Schooler 17:21
So let’s, let’s have an example.
So say, someone came to me. And they said, they said:-“I’ve got some social media work that needs doing”
Not that I enjoy it, but say they did, and they I don’t mind it to be fair.
But they came to me and they said:- “Right, I’m going to give you a day and off social media, where this is how much it pays.”
Say it is 200 quid a day, right?
That’s 300 pound in a day and a half per week, right?
Say I go away and I find someone who is 10 pounds, an hour, I can turn that 300 into. I can just manage that person. And I can use that individual straightaway to, to take that burden off of me. Because delivering social media is a right headache. And then I can make, say, however much is left over, so hundred and 20. So 180 a week.
Obviously, I’m gonna have to do some work and make sure that they’re doing it right, collect the billables, pay the person, make sure you know going and have a look at it every week so it isn’t, you know, and then liaise with the client, so how do I scale that then?
Lyndon Wood 18:42
You don’t use the 180 quid for yourself you reinvest it.
Nathaniel Schooler 18:46
Lyndon Wood 18:52
Well in whatever you’re doing. If social media is your thing, you we invest into marketing and get more social media leads.
You don’t use it. Now everybody has to have a degree of income, because again, they have mortgages or rent and things like that they have to do. But when there’s some spare capital over, you do that. I’ve had people come to be in gone, Lyndon, here’s an investment plan.
I want to start a business. I want to do X Y Z, and you look at the numbers and you go:- “Okay, you’ve got yourself in at 60,000 pounds salary and you want 150,000 pound just to sort of start this thing. Yeah, great idea. But why are you taking 60 grand of my money?
Oh, well, because that’s what I’m used to. And honestly, I’ve had people say that that’s what I’m used to. In my job.
Nathaniel Schooler 19:40
Lyndon Wood 19:41
Yeah, but that is not the point. What is the bare minimum you need to live off?
Well, I’ve got a mortgage, I got the right so your bare minimum is actually 25,000 pound. You tell you what I’ll invest but you take 25,000 pounds a year out of it, not 60,000.
And they walk away and never start a business.
Nathaniel Schooler 20:02
What a shame. Because within two years they could be on that. 60K,
Lyndon Wood 20:07
But this is what happens. People go with what they used to, rather than looking at the raw basics as to what I actually need. If you want to be in business, you got to go on the raw basics. You got to pay your mortgage, electric bill. But you know what, this year you’re going to sacrifice the holidays?
You’re not gonna have spare cash to buy a new design a jacket or a new pair of jeans, right? Because you’re going to work your bloody business. And that’s it. And it’s for the the medium a longer term benefit if your entire family.
Nathaniel Schooler 20:38
Yeah, exactly. Exactly.
Lyndon Wood 20:40
Because you will own your own time.
Some people get greedy people get greedy and they want what they used to, rather than actually what they need.
Nathaniel Schooler 20:52
Because it’s about creating that vehicle, isn’t it that business is a vehicle for your financial success for the future.
Lyndon Wood 20:59
It’s your unlimited earning potential
That’s what your business is that your unlimited earning potential. Because you haven’t got a cap it can be as profitable or not profitable or as big or as small as you like because it’s yours.
Nathaniel Schooler 21:18
Do you think a lot of it has to do with family members and friends telling you you can’t do things in a lot of these cases?
Lyndon Wood 21:24
Now you know I had this when I started because and probably rightly so to a degree and I was 19 for God’s sake I was in and out of you know the odd couple of jobs. I just wouldn’t turn up for work and so on and then off got 19 and start this insurance brokerage you know, and an old man industry still is the average age is about 56 though.
I don’t get asked anymore though, because I’m sort of 48 now back then. Oh my God you’re young to be in insurance now I just don’t get that! Yes. So you know, there were people that didn’t want me to start up and again maybe rightly so because I was in and out of jobs, I could have really damaged myself financially, how they started, gotten the debt and sort of jacket it in.
You can’t listen to people around. You’ve got to have your own belief system. You know, if you believe in something, do it. Just don’t ask opinions. I’ve never asked opinions on my business.
And I don’t mean that from an ego point of view. As in Do you think I’m doing the right thing? And you’ll never hear me ask it. You’ll never hear me say the words. Because when I’ve got something in my head, I’ve already rationalised all of that. I’ve already gone through the pros, the cons that do I do I not the risks.
So once I’ve decided I’ve gone through all that rationale. Now. I don’t need then to get someone to go:- “Is it the right thing that I’m doing?”
Because you know what, the person I’m asking is probably less experienced than me and they might give me the wrong answer.
And they say :-“No, you shouldn’t do it.”
You with me? Yeah. And then and then your belief system takes a kick in and then you stop making decisions.
And that is fact. So when you believe in something, as long as you rationalise it, you’ve done a little bit of research. you’ve understood it, then you go for it. And you know what I do? I actually don’t ask people I’ll go around and said:- “Hey, I’m doing this.”
Like I’ve been honest with you on a couple of things in the past, and it’s just my opinion. Yeah, it can make you second thing can we actually, you know, probably has a point or or re engineer it in a different manner, but I’m still going to do it.
Yeah, well, I’ll tell you, I’ll tell you what, though, Lyndon, which was really helpful, when you when you sort of said something to me and you you really made me think, and actually what you said really focused my mind, because I was over the shop you know, like a lot of people.
Because I don’t like the word entrepreneur either because actually not full of BS. You know, there’s a lot of BS around the entrepreneurial world like you were saying earlier.
But yeah, the problem with the “serial entrepreneur” is what is what you would call people who have a certain personality. I would call it a disorder actually potentially.
And if you can’t tame that personality disorder to, to a sensible, you know, I’m doing this, this, this and this, like three things maybe four that’s my gut feeling maximum.
Nathaniel Schooler 24:22
Then you’re dissipating all your energy into things that are never go to work because you’re never going to put enough effort in there to make them work. And what you said to me was really useful I forget what it was I could probably go through Twitter and have a look but it really it really made me just sit up and go:- “Wow this guy’s right I need to I need to take this on board!”
You know you weren’t the first person or probably the last who’ve said it to me is a combination of you and another one of my mentors, who said the same thing to me you know, one of them one of them said I was like a squirrel on acid.
Lyndon Wood 25:01
So, the bit that I said was about focus. Because and the reason I’m able to share that knowledge is because I, you know, a lot of people in business, I’ve been there and done it and they go off, they start a business, they build it to a certain point or not build it, and then they go off and do this, that and the other and I’ve got five businesses and five different business cards or or one business card with five logos on it, you know, it’s all that sort of stuff and then you look at you go, which ones are actually making a million quid a year? and none of them.
None of these businesses you’ve got a making a million quid a year, none of them. So it’s about focus and and my business probably could have been double or three times the size right now, had I not gone off and done other things over the past 10 or 15 years. Because it would have had my undivided attention.
Nathaniel Schooler 26:00
Yeah, but then but then but then you’ve you’ve enjoyed yourself.
Lyndon Wood 26:05
Course I have, the business is still it’s done what it’s done, but it could have been two or three times bigger had not been diverted. I’ve wasted a lot of money on investments are wasted money on bad investments I’ve done startups with myself and realised I haven’t got the time for it.
And that’s again about the focus, you know, so it’s when you focus on one thing that you have a passion for, and that there’s a market opportunity. You just put your heart and soul into it, don’t get diverted off and if you are the kind of person that does get diverted off with different business ideas and so on. You have to consciously control it and remind yourself what you’re doing.
Nathaniel Schooler 26:49
Just make a note. It’s like It’s like a marketing idea that comes along or a toy that you want to buy. You just put a you know, put a list together I might
Like this idea and just make a note, I mean.
Lyndon Wood 27:02
But you’ve got to value your time. You know, I have ideas on business constantly. I give them to other people, you know. But I’m constantly…and it’s because I remind myself :-
“Stay focused on what really matters and what is really bringing in profit.” “And what is really bringing in the income”
Just grow that and that might sound a little mundane, but it’s fact because you don’t want to be there 30 years later going I’m still a one man band.
Nathaniel Schooler 27:30
Lyndon Wood 27:31
I could have gone off and try lots and lots of different things.
Nathaniel Schooler 27:35
Yeah, well, that’s the challenge isn’t it? It’s it’s, it’s knowing when something is working. And then Firstly, finding what your passion is. I mean, that’s the that’s the beginning of it, isn’t it? At the end of the day.
Lyndon Wood 27:50
Passion is divided into this is a great business idea and get all that excitement of the startup and maybe it’s the office and some marketing and your brochure in your business cards and your website and you know, and there’s a passion for the business, but not necessarily passion for the business idea. It’s the passion for starting a business.
And it might not be your passion, your passion might be health and not insurance, for example, it might be that yes, you get a passion for the business and then that quickly fades once it’s set up and it’s trying to do its thing. Or there’s the passion that you have in your life. Generally, it might be food, it might be health might be golf, it might be podcasts. Yeah it could be anything so there’s different kinds of passion Would you say that the best thing is when you can combine the passion that you have in life with the with the passion for the business have I got a passion for insurance I’d be a real sad git if I did I have a passion for business.
I have a passion for building a business Yeah, yeah. I have a passion for seeing people develop. I have a passion for given individuals opportunities inside my business as well, so much and that is a genuine real passion. I love seeing them come into the business with no experience or worked in a in a shop or something prior and giving them professional qualifications over one or two years.
I’ve seen them develop through the company and some even leave the business all on good terms and build their careers and are now on 60 or 70,000 pounds a year in a an area that they could never even dream of being in you know.
I still get people from years ago messaging me every so often thanking me for the opportunity because they wouldn’t be where they are today. That’s what I’ve got a passion for it.
Nathaniel Schooler 29:39
That’s that’s really nice. It’s a feel good thing, isn’t it? The benefits of view being able to help people for them.
Lyndon Wood 29:47
I mean, they help the business but you’re not just helping, people, you are helping their entire lives.
You put you put them on the run of the ladder that will last them the next 40 years. Yeah, that will enable their lives. So it will enable the holidays, the nice car the bigger house drumming yeah I thought to be able to afford to bring your kids up or have kids even because people do think of kids and money related. Yeah which they are like. But yeah so you know just doing that for people that’s the passion you know.
Nathaniel Schooler 30:18
So what about critical thinking then when do you think critical thinking really comes into business it’s a daily thing isn’t it?
Lyndon Wood 30:25
Yeah good old Socrates. Yeah, it’s a daily thing so that my insurance business is a factual based industry. Yeah, we’re regulated. So if it’s not documented, it didn’t happen. And critical thinking it’s more than taking someone’s opinion because there’s lots of those. It’s actually asking for the evidence behind the opinion. So sometimes being in in my spot on my position, some people that work for me or certainly senior figures, they might say you don’t like to be challenged.
I love being challenged. All I’m encouraging in in all my senior team is to challenge the status quo challenge what they’re doing. Challenge what I’m doing. I might not have the best idea. It might be an idea, but I’ll back my idea.
So if you’re going to challenge, back it up with facts, yeah.
Nathaniel Schooler 31:18
I get that about you. I get that about you.
I’m just having a quick look on Google here. And the top it says here, the five critical thinking skills. Yeah, so for each of the critical thinking skills shown below, they give a number of activity statements, right.
So we’ve got analysing, separating or breaking a hole in two parts to discover their nature functional relationship. I get that about you, you’re very analytical in your in your mindset.
And it says it says applying standards. Number two, yeah.
Judging according to establish personal, professional or social rules or criteria.
Yeah, quite quite a few here. But I think, I think certainly, you know, discriminating as well is number three. So recognising differences and similarities among things or situations.
It goes back to just your, your analytical thinking, doesn’t it really.
Lyndon Wood 32:18
Sort of analytical mindset. And, and that’s nothing complicated. It’s, it’s, I call it observations. Other people call it analytical. So I like I like to simplify things. But you know what life is full of people that want to complicate things. Yeah. And when you dumb it down and simplify it, you think, why the hell did you even spend an hour explaining that to me, because it’s, it only takes me a minute to do yeah,
so simplification is is probably the best skill anyone can have. Because everyone will justify their existence by talking complexity, right? Even the word can actually sounds pretty complex. It spins me out. When I say the word complexity and you see products, you know it, especially the insurance market, complex insurance product, anything.
What the hell was complex about insurance? Yeah. Right. And so, yeah, simplification So, and observation. So I observe naturally, behaviour words, phrases, you pick up on your sense, the feeling about an individual, perhaps, rather than what they’re actually saying. And yeah, and it’s just absorbing that, that sort of information energy and saying the word analytical, it’s just just dumbfounded.
Just make observations.
Nathaniel Schooler 33:46
I don’t like the word analytical either, really. So when you’re observing the facts of the argument, right of discussion, let’s call it a discussion because it shouldn’t be an argument everything needs to be a discussion.
Discussion or debate?
Yes debate. Yeah. So you will, first of all, you’ll, you’ll have a you’ll have an idea and then one of your team or clients or you know, partners whatever will come and say, well I don’t agree with that. So you look at them and say, well okay well why don’t you agree with that?
And then they will they will give you their their two Penny’s worth right yeah but then over and above all of that they’re they’re sort of sitting behind it is your way of doing business your ethics your morals your principles that that sit behind all business and all critical thinking right?
Lyndon Wood 34:42
Absolutely you gotta have your own ethics and morals in business and there’s so many again individually that scam the world out there, my own soul and heart wouldn’t let me sleep at night.
If I thought I ripped someone or four or even then someone a disservice are dealt with somebody in a wrong manner. You know, so things I lose sleep over as an individual as a person.
See on top of decision making and the sort of critical thinking subject as long as someone backs their their debate up with facts.
Naturally I have the the broader vision. I’m able to join the dots in in the company and in the wider world outside the company.
So I can add different elements into that debate that perhaps someone that works for you can’t however when people come up with the debate and they back their words up with facts; it’s great because it can open up other avenues other doors things that you didn’t think of.
You may still run with your decision or your idea or concept or whatever it is a perhaps in a slightly different manner and that’s a good thing. So debate is really healthy as long as your team can back it up.
Never ever just take somebody’s opinion because quite often opinions of flawed
Nathaniel Schooler 35:56
Completely that driven a lot by emotion aren’t they.
Lyndon Wood 36:00
What the classic classic example would be limited. Let me consider this a minute sort of lots of people are unhappy.
Well, who are the lots of people?
And then they go, Jim.
I think well so the so the first statement opinion lots of people can send you off on a path oh my God there’s lots of people unhappy and extend you up this this blind alley of thinking that are lots of people are unhappy. The fact is, it’s one person you need to and you make two very different decisions based on the fact
Nathaniel Schooler 36:40
Yeah, that’s that’s an interesting way of looking at it. But also, I mean, we’re all we’re all conditioned by a number of different factors.
You know, from when we’re born. We are conditioned throughout our lives to absorb information and form opinions, which could be just emotional.
They’re not they’re not actually fact based in many cases, so we could we could argue the point of something really believing in what we’re saying based on just you know like our personality type for example doesn’t allow us to kick an idea around well I’m a bit different. My friend who’s who’s like a study behaviours for you know decades yeah the thing that I’m a debater which makes sense.
So for example, if you say to me about about something, we have a conversation I’ll say no, I don’t agree with you on that and and i will argue the complete opposite even though I don’t even believe in it just because I want to kick around the idea and get to the bottom of the facts, you know.
Lyndon Wood 37:55
I don’t like to label people out of box people or anything for that matter.
Become the second someone and whether that is a psychologist or behave or whatever. It really doesn’t make any difference. Because you know, you might be classed as a debater today. But tomorrow is something else. In fact, in the next 10 minutes, you something else because your mind will change according to what I’m saying. Yeah. And mine will change according to what you’re saying.
Nathaniel Schooler 38:25
That’s very interesting. I agree with that.
Lyndon Wood 38:29
So you’re going to again, depends who you are. You’re talking to, you know, would would you really debate with me? Would you really sit there and a Richard Branson or an Alan Sugar say something? Would you really sit down debate with them?
Reality is you probably wouldn’t, because you think they’ve got all these years of experience built empires and have all that intuition sat inside them.
Nathaniel Schooler 38:54
Lyndon Wood 38:55
You probably wouldn’t. So therefore, at that moment in time, you are not a debater
Nathaniel Schooler 38:59
Very good point. Very good. I think it would totally depend on the person that you were that you were talking with, wouldn’t it? Or the team of people.
Lyndon Wood 39:09
Absolutely does. So, so I don’t like I don’t like if someone leaves you with something, you know, and because it sets your mind in a in on a path of, right, I’m a debater and then he sort of almost becomes a conscious effort that every time somebody speaks, you’re you’re going to try and debate because I’m a debater.
Nathaniel Schooler 39:27
I think it’s based upon will. It’s based upon the test that I probably did on the day. And yeah,
Lyndon Wood 39:33
Nathaniel Schooler 39:34
You change, don’t you over over over your career, and over a week, or even an hour, right?
Lyndon Wood 39:39
I mean, what I said, you change in 10 minutes, you know, you and I could be talking about business and then we’re stirring and we will, you know, we’ll throw ideas and we’ll debate and discuss and whatever and then you start talking about kids and charities know you’re very different. You’re not going to debate when I when we say about I’m going to give 100,000 pound to a charity you’re not going to go or I don’t think you should. Do you see what mean.
Nathaniel Schooler 39:59
Yeah, we could change instantly. We could talk about all sorts of things, you know, and have a really good conversation about martial arts training. We could talk about the three hours probably.
Lyndon Wood 40:11
The point I am making is you change accordingly to the conversation we are having.
You might debate some things. When I go to give 100 grand to charity. You stop debating. So are you a debater? Or are you not a debater?
In other words in other words, don’t label yourself!
Nathaniel Schooler 40:29
I like that a lot. So with critical thinking, right you know, you need to you need to be able to think critically very fast don’t you? I mean if there’s a situation that’s happening within business that’s like a crisis situation you’re going to need to analyse that that situation very quickly on new and then make a list of things that you need to sort of come up with a decision and an a plan, right, like quite quickly.
Lyndon Wood 40:55
Yeah, yeah, depends what it is. But what is critical thinking? It’s a label. Yeah. Critical thinking is running your business?
So people seem to like labels for some peculiar reasons. But it’s, it’s doing what needs to be done in order to run and grow your business. And part of running and growing your business is and I will use the word analysing, making observations, having a vision, looking after your people properly, because they are people, that’s running a business.
Now, you could call that that’s human resources. That’s critical thinking. This is the creative department, this is the actuarial department that’s just running a business.
Nathaniel Schooler 41:41
Or managing your your team or department or even just managing your job, you know, and your roles and responsibilities that you’ve got, we all have to be able to think properly to make things work.
Lyndon Wood 41:53
You know, you have to consider a lot of things when you’re selling one service or multiple services or one product or multiple products, you have to see how they’re performing. In order to see how they’re performing.
You have to analyse and observe and come up with a conclusion and some action at the end of it. And that’s it, if that’s what businesses did properly, and in my book, it’s, I call it micro segmentation. If that’s what they did properly, then they would thrive. But a lot of companies don’t; a lot of businesses that don’t I am talking about small and medium sized businesses; even the larger ones to a good degree. They’ll segment but rarely micro segment. And it’s the biggest barrier to businesses growing because they don’t really understand or have the metrics in place where the profit is really being made.
So therefore, as a smaller business, they either keep going doing what they’re doing, or they start launching other businesses, as we’ve discussed, or they start launching other products or services, so the list becomes huge.
Now, they’re an expert in nothing,
Nathaniel Schooler 43:01
Yeah, I agree completely. I think staying focused is certainly the way to go, isn’t it? Because then people know you for what you do best.
Lyndon Wood 43:10
Be the authority, simple as that just be the authority or something. Don’t be a jack of all trades, and you must, you must have come across businesses going to go or I’m launching this service. I’m launching these other products. And you know why they’re doing it is because they actually haven’t understood what they’re doing now, today.
Nathaniel Schooler 43:25
It’s happened to me and many, many people that I know. And then and then the problem is, is people just don’t take you seriously.
And it becomes like a sort of, “Oh, yeah, look what he’s doing this month.” You know, kind of kind of thing. Yeah, for me, it’s certainly about staying focused.
And I think just, you know, if you’ve got 20 ideas, you’ve got to pick three or even just one I mean, like look at Krug Champagne?
I mean, I was interviewing my friend and mentor Douglas the other days to like work on good Krug Champagne brand back a few years ago, and he said :-
“The reason that they’re successful is because you can’t can’t First of all, the product is amazingly good and they’ve just stuck with what they’ve done best and just stuck at it and carried on doing it and now haven’t changed it.”
No, there are many brands like it. I mean, you look at Amazon, you know, the world sort of favourite brand right now.
They start off with books and disrupted the book market, not until they’ve dominated that they start launching other things so you have to dominate your market first, dominate your audience and then launch other things.
But people do it too early and they get carried away with the call it entrepreneurial ideas and they don’t understand the businesses what we’re doing today because if you fully understand what you’re doing today, then it will put you in a positive position have been able to expand it vast and fast and widely but they don’t they just launched other services and other products because they don’t understand
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