I attended a conference last week called Capital Camp in Columbia, Missouri. This is by no means a promotional ad for that conference, but I walked away with a clear head and some amazing insights into my strategy, my mindset, and how I manage the emotions and ego every entrepreneur deals with, especially with the Sweaty Startup Podcast and The Nick Huber Show. Everything was organized by my friend, Brent Beshore, and his partner Patrick O’Shaughnessy, both extremely accomplished investors. Just to give you an idea of the caliber of what I’m talking about, the average net worth of this conference was probably $10 million, roughly 280 attendees, and if I’m willing to bet, there were eight or nine billionaires. In short, there were a lot of bad-ass people that I had the opportunity of being around.
I felt like a very small fish in an ocean.
The advantage here is that when you’re in a room with so many like-minded people who have just as big aspirations if not bigger, you can break through barriers quickly. From people involved in real estate investing, crypto investors, hedge fund managers, those involved in private equity, buying and growing businesses to public equities and stock markets, you name it, they were there. So, my goal was to frankly, bust my ass, make friends, and build relationships with everyone I could, getting to know these people and how they think.
First off, the conversational skill of these people was off the charts.
The ability to concisely articulate their thoughts and feelings, I could tell that these people had done the work to form opinions and communicate their ideas. That’s unique! It was like three to four days of talking to a normal person packed into a 30-minute conversation because of how efficiently they talk about what they’re into, thinking, or their insights that worry them about particular markets. They go far and fast!
Second, everybody there had completely different paths and strategies
It blew my mind at some of the ways these people got to where they are. I talked to somebody who traded and bought domains and then started a business based on certain domains that they acquired. Others were people who bought businesses, small, medium, and even larger ones and then just grew them. The way everybody made their money was unique and niche–from crypto to real estate investing, it was an eye-opening experience to meet 280 wildly successful people. If you want to know how to start a startup or any business pursuit for that matter, you need to go to a conference like this! I probably had conversations with about a hundred different people, all of whom had vastly different approaches, opinions, and methods of how to win.
The last thing that blew my mind came from the question: “What was your biggest challenge and what do you think of the environment today?”
Look, I’m five years into real estate (remember that when you’re listening to me). I’m a baby compared to these people. I haven’t been through a downturn. I didn’t go through the great recession. I didn’t go through the .com bubble, or have had to go through the crisis of stagflation in the seventies and eighties, but I talked to people who had. People who are 50, 60 years old and 30 years into a successful career and have done phenomenally well. Everyone of them said “everything always changes” and that the key to being a successful entrepreneur is finding a way to do business no matter the environment.
I walked away from this conference with clarity around what I needed to do differently–that sometimes going really slow and thinking about business over the course of 5 years, and 10 years is the way to win instead of tinkering with my business every Sunday night because I’m excited about going to work on Monday morning.
I’ll leave you with two more things.
The overwhelming attitude at this conference was one of positivity–very bullish on the American economy. These wealthy people had an insanely positive outlook and I didn’t hear anybody thinking or even talking about a giant crash around the corner. With that being said, there’s a disclaimer that most people there are preparing for one. Do they think it’s going to happen? No, but they’re prepared nonetheless. To be around so many wealthy and successful people, all of which have this overall enthusiasm for the United States was pretty awesome.
The last thing is that I feel very fortunate that I’m in the real estate business. I’ve always called real estate investors stupid, but to find a place where a lot of stupid people are still making money, I love competing with that kind of market.
It was an amazing experience, and I highly recommend finding a way to network with positive, successful people. This is completely contrary to the overwhelming attitude we see from everybody else in the world. There’s a reason the people at the Camp are where they are and the everyday Joe and Jane aren’t.
Three Key Takeaways:
- Tighten up your communication skills. Learn how to think in an effective and efficient manner. The better you get at thinking and articulating your ideas, the faster you’ll move.
- There is no one way to be successful. The true test is whether or not you can adapt to your environment.
- Surround yourself with successful people. It’s been said that you’re the average of the five people you hang around with, and by this logic, it only makes sense to be around people who want success as much or more than you do.
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