E-Commerce secrets to scale

059 - Maintaining Work-Life Balance with Tristan Wright

059 – Maintaining Work-Life Balance with Tristan Wright

E-Commerce Secrets To Scale is a marketing and entrepreneurship podcast that revolves around hearing the stories and strategies of successful entrepreneurs and e-commerce professionals to uncover scaling secrets that will impact your online store.

Listen To This Episode:

CONNECT WITH TRISTAN:

Tanner:

This week on the show, Tristan Wright from Evolve to Grow, joins me to discuss maintaining work-life balance. Tristan has some really great insights about how he balances his own life and work that I think are really valuable. And at the end of the day, we start our businesses so that we could work less, right. If you want to work less and find success in your personal life, as well as your business life, this is the episode for you.

Welcome to the show. I’m really excited to have you go ahead and introduce yourself to the audience.

Tristan:

Thanks, Tanner. Thanks for having me today. So guys, my name’s Tristan Wright and I’m coming to you all the way from Melbourne Victoria, Australia. So I run a business called Evolve to Grow and I market myself as a chief business Sherpa at the business. What else do you want me to share? Like how much detail do you want me to go into Tanner?

Tanner:

Oh, no that’s good, man. I love the title. Could you tell us how your career got started? Like how did you get started in this business and you know, what is your story?

Tristan:

Yeah, so I studied engineering, MEK engine, industrial design straight out of school and got into that space for a little bit and sort of enjoyed it, but not really. And I ended up setting up my own business, totally different space in custom sportswear. So manufacturing, designing and selling custom cycling clothing, custom running clothing, custom triathlon gear. And I was selling it to institutes of sports, clubs or selling it to big businesses. So that was in my, I set that up in my early twenties, maybe 24 and 23, 24. And by the time I was 26, 27, I was doing seven figures million dollars per year. And I was doing really, really well. And in hindsight, I was already quite arrogant and quite cocky. Then all of a sudden within the space of six months the Aussie dollar tanked against the US dollar.

So everything got a whole hit, more expensive. And my wife at the time decided to leave me and I stuck my head in the sand. And when you stick your head in the sand, life still goes on. And once I pulled my head out, I was 200 grand in debt and I had absolutely no idea what to do. So going from having a super successful business to being 200K in debt in less than a year. So I, fortunately I, over a period of time, I realized, Hey, I can’t do this by myself. Went and got support and guidance and spoke to others. I was able to rebuild the business. Claw my way out of debt ended up selling the business. And then after selling that business, I was fortunate enough to take a bit of time off and do a bit of a re-evaluation think, what do I want in life?

What do I enjoy? And it was when I was over in Croatia with my new partner, Aaron, where we’re having a couple of glasses of wine in Dubrovnik. And we realized that I love talking to people. I love helping people. I’ve always been a leader through high school. I love business, and I’ve learnt a whole lot in business. And there’s actually a whole heap of people that would have been through, that are going through what I went through. Why don’t I use all of those skills that I gathered through my previous business and utilize my passions and then go and help other business owners. So once we got back right back from Croatia, I set up Evolved to Grow. And quite literally the purpose of the business is to give other business owners time, freedom and results, and make sure that they don’t have to work on it by themselves and help them get to their ultimate objective easier. So does that give you a bit of a background?

Tanner:

Yeah, dude, that was a great story. Really detailed, I really like it. So now let’s pick up where you left off with Evolve to Grow in the early days, what were some obstacles that you faced while trying to grow?

Tristan:

I think the biggest one was mental, was internal. I was thinking like literally in the early days, when I set that business up, it was why do people want to work with me? Why choose me over someone that’s been in the industry, being coaching, consulting, guiding others. Why would they choose me over someone that’s got five and 10 and 20 years experience? So I was questioning myself in the early days and I just needed to give myself proof. And I, once I started helping others, I had proof. I was starting to get results and it didn’t matter that I wasn’t making money early days, but I was getting runs on the board. Quite literally it was my mindset and belief in myself, questioning myself. But once I got past that the flood gates opened.

Tanner:

Yeah. I mean, it’s a confidence thing. Right. And it isn’t always there. Right. Sometimes it goes away and you got to get it back, but that really makes all the difference.

And if you are a hundred percent aligned with that ultimate objective, you’ll get there no matter what.

Tristan:

Yeah. Massive. If you’ve got self-belief, you’ve got faith in yourself you will achieve, and the best way to have self-belief and fighting yourself is to have a clear, ultimate objective what you actually want to achieve. And if you are a hundred percent aligned with that ultimate objective, you’ll get there no matter what.

Tanner:

Yeah. That’s awesome, man. So what would you attribute your success to now that you’ve grown the business and you’ve helped a lot of people.

Tristan:

It’s a never say die attitude, knowing that I’m aligned with where I want to get to. So knowing that each step I take is one step closer to my ultimate objective to helping other people, helping business owners. So having clarity on my app, on my ultimate objective helps me gain that success.

Tanner:

Yeah. So, you know, working your way towards that vision, but also I’d say probably a lot of persistence as well.

Tristan:

Yeah. Knowing that you’re not going to achieve it overnight, that there are steppingstones, milestones, and that you actually have to take a step back and realize you can’t be focused on that end goal the entire time you’ve got to make a smaller goal. So something in 90 days time, for instance, and if you’re focusing on 90 days time, you know, that once you’ve achieved that 90 days, you’re going to be 90 days closer to your ultimate objective because you’ve obstacles that certain amount in that period.

You’ve got to break that up into digestible pieces and small attainable goals that ultimately get you to the big goal.

Tanner:

Yeah. And that’s a good point because a lot of people will have this really big goal and they’re working towards it but you’ve got to break that up into digestible pieces and small attainable goals that ultimately get you to the big goal.

Tristan:

Correct. A hundred percent.

Tanner:

So the topic for today is maintaining work-life balance. And this is something that a lot of entrepreneurs struggle with of course. I think anyone listening could probably agree with that, but how would you define a successful work-life balance?

Realizing that business is a tool for you to enjoy your life.

Tristan:

The first step is understanding that business doesn’t identify who you are. Business is actually a tool for your life and separating your business identity from your personal identity. So many people identify their business success as a personal success. You can have business success, you can have sporting success, you can have family success, they’re all, you’ve got to separate them all and realize that you can, once you shut the door at the end of the day, you’ve still got your life to succeed at. From there it’s realizing that business is a tool for you to enjoy your life.

Tanner:

Yeah. And I wanted to just say, you know, we start our businesses so that we can work less. Right. So why do so many people struggle with taking time off and not working themselves to death? Right. It’s the complete opposite of what we want when we start a business. Right.

Tristan:

Correct. And it’s often because we don’t know how to create boundaries. We don’t necessarily have a clear pathway and if we don’t have boundaries, we don’t have a clear pathway, work-life blends into personal life.

Tanner:

Absolutely. And especially today with so many people working from home at least for the last year and a half finding a work life balance is even harder than ever because it’s just, you know, your office and your computers, just a walk down the hallway or walk upstairs. And it’s so easy to just get sucked into it when you walk by it, or if you get a text or an email, right.

Tristan:

Yeah. How many hours are you doing? Are you good at your work life balance Tanner?

Tanner:

Oh, I feel like I’ve been doing a little bit better with my work-life balance. Usually I’m working about 10 hours a day. So that’s a lot better than it used to be. Back in the day, I think I was working like 16 hours a day on average.

Tristan:

And that’s crazy. Yeah.

Tanner:

What about you?

I guess my biggest secret to success is actually having goals outside of business.

Tristan:

One of, I guess my biggest secret to success is actually having goals outside of business. So one of my goals outside of businesses that I want to do a marathon in three hours in 10 minutes. So that allows me to, and that’s just as valuable to me as success in business. That allows me to say hey Tristan, I need to switch off and go and do some exercise now. So I’ll never work past 5:00 PM. Not once, I don’t know how to work past 5:00 PM. Sometimes I check my emails on my phone later on.

Tanner:

Yeah. And I like that because, you know, we very much live in a society that rewards, you know, the hustle and grind mentality. Like sometimes if I stop working at five and I start getting emails and phone calls and I ignore them, I feel bad. I’m like, why should I feel bad because I left work in my office and now I’m, you know, spending time with my wife. Right. And it really shouldn’t be like that. And I’m glad we’re talking about this because we need to change the mentality of everyday business people. Right?

But if you actually own the relationship and put in boundaries, they’ll respect you more.

Tristan:

Yeah. So cause it’s just remembering that you’ve set your business up to enjoy your personal life so. And if you own the relationship with your clients and say, Hey, these are my working hours, they’re going to respect that a lot more. And in time they’ll actually pay you a lot more. But if you’re answering all day, every day, they’re going to be like, oh, this guy’s working all the time. His time isn’t worth that much. I’ll pay him less. But if you actually own the relationship and put in boundaries, they’ll respect you more. And that means, and you’ll respect yourself more and then you’ll be able to charge more.

Tanner:

That’s a really good point. I never really thought about that. But another downside to responding any time a client or a customer reaches out to you is that they’re going to think that’s normal and they’re going to do that on a regular basis. So your right, setting those boundaries are really important both in maintaining your work-life balance. And like you said, you know, making your time more valuable.

Tristan:

Yeah. it’s definitely that owning the relationship, making sure you own the relationship rather than your customer owning the relationship.

Tanner:

Yeah. And sometimes that’s hard to do, right. Because you just want to make your customers happy and you want to go the extra mile and sometimes it ends up just being detrimental to yourself. So you talked about your personal goal to run a marathon in a certain amount of time. Sorry. I can’t remember what you said, but what are some other ways that you personally maintain your work-life balance?.

So I have to then reverse engineer and think, how do I still make as much profit in my business but work less.

Tristan:

Yeah. So, the biggest one is having hobbies and goals outside of business. So we’re really good at creating business goals or business dreams. People aren’t generally that good at creating business costs. We’re good at creating dreams. But we, once we have goals outside of business that is the easiest, the simplest way to maintain that work-life balance, whether it’s, for me it’s running, it’s spending time with my son, Emerson and realizing that we need to be present today. And if I’m working in the evening, I’m not being present and I’m going to miss out on the time to spend with my son. And if, he’s only two once kind of thing. So I have to then reverse engineer and think, how do I still make as much profit in my business but work less. And it goes back to charging my worth, charging my value and working out how I can be of more value to the client. And it’s not necessarily spending more time with the client. It’s providing a high value service offering.

Tanner:

Yeah. And if you’re the founder, you have complete control over how much you work. Right. Because you can delegate everything out. And if you execute things correctly, then you shouldn’t need to be putting in those extra hours.

Tristan:

Correct. My mindset is if it’s making me less than $300 per hour, someone else within the team is doing the work.

Tanner:

Yeah. That’s a good rule of thumb. You know our time is our most valuable asset, so we need to conserve it and we need to make sure if we’re sacrificing our time, that we’re, it’s worth it for us. Right. And you know, you don’t want to miss out on something important, like your family and, you know, other relationship ships that you have in your life, just because you’re trying to make your client happy and you’re not getting anything out of that relationship.

And it’s really easy to take those other relationships for granted because we’ve been in those relationships, and we’ve had those friendships so long.

Tristan:

Correct. And it’s really easy to take those other relationships for granted because we’ve been in those relationships and we’ve had those friendships so long. The age-old saying is that the squeaky wheel gets the oil and often the squeaky wheel isn’t the one that should be getting the oil. That’s the annoying one. That’s not actually worth as much. It’s the one that is being patient and quiet that should be getting the oil.

Tanner:

Yes, exactly. Yeah. I mean, you know, we’ve got clients that we never even talked to and they’re happy and they’re patient, they’re willing to do whatever to, you know, continue working with us. And, you know, we’ve got some that, you know, we’re on the phone with every single day. Right. And it’s,

Tristan:

I’m just going to say, I bet you, the clients that you don’t talk to very often are the easiest ones, but you charge them the most.

Tanner:

Yes. I was just about to say that they’re the high value clients that are spending the most money and I never have to talk to them because they’ve got, you know, the, like, we’re just one tiny piece of the puzzle in their business.

Tristan:

Yes. What I’d be doing, I’d be firing one of those noisy clients. I’d literally go and fire one of those noisy clients. And that time that you’ve saved, go and audit your quiet clients and work out how you can upsell them.

Tanner:

Yeah. That’s great advice.

Tristan:

I bet you you’d be able to replace that revenue plus some just by auditing those other clients in that free time and that revenue that you replaced will be a high profit margin because you don’t have to work on them as much.

Tanner:

Yep. Yeah, you’re exactly right. And if any of my clients are listening to this, I’m not talking about you. All right. Tristan what’s I mean, what are some signs that you aren’t maintaining good work-life balance.

So I’ve got a rule with all of my clients that every 90 days you need to take a week off from work.

Tristan:

What are some times you’re going back to work after dinner is the easiest one. Another one is that you’re actually not loving work. You’re not jumping out of bed in the morning and saying, Hey, this is awesome kind of thing. So I’ve got a rule with all of my clients that every 90 days you need to take a week off from work. Just so you can recharge your batteries. So you can actually be more energetic and more focused on the outcomes that you need to deliver.

Tanner:

Yeah. And I think there’s a lot of truth to that, right. You know, it’s so easy to get burnt out. And of course, you’ve got those entrepreneurs that are just wired differently and they never get burnt out and they’re always go, go, go. But you know, the rest of us, we get burnt out. Right. So we gotta make sure we take a break.

Tristan:

Those entrepreneurs that are wired and always go, go, go have a look at the quality of their, their relationships. Now there’ll be able to deliver on their business, but the quality of their relationships and their personal life, most likely won’t be to the level that you or I, a typical person would want. So we don’t want to use them as, well, we don’t want to put them on a pedestal as a way to work

Tanner:

No, absolutely not. You know, they’re putting every ounce of energy they have into their businesses and they’ve got nothing left, you know, after they, you know, once they finally log off and go to bed. Right. So yeah, I mean, it’s so important to focus on what matters to you and I guess to those people, their business is the only thing that matters to them. So I guess they are getting what they want. So Tristan, what would you say your secrets to scale are?

Tristan:

Making sure I’m not the smartest person in the team.

Tanner:

That’s a good one.

Hire people that are subject matter experts.

Tristan:

And, and the sooner I realize, I’m sorry, the sooner I can have, or the sooner I have smarter people around me the easier it is to scale. So many famous people, so many successful people have said, hire people smarter than you. Hire people that are subject matter experts. So as soon as you can bring in subject matter experts, so you don’t have to be the Jack of all trade.

Tanner:

Yeah, That’s really impactful. If you’re hiring people that are not smarter than you, you’re going to be doing all the work or you’re going to be telling them what to do or teaching them how to do literally everything. You’re going to be holding their hands and babysitting them, which is not what we should be going after of course. But aside from the negative aspects of doing that, the positive aspects of hiring people smarter than you is they’re going to propel your business forward without you having to do anything other than give them a paycheck.

Tristan:

Correct. And they’re going to come up with ideas that you didn’t have, and they’re going to allow you to scale in ways that you didn’t think were possible.

Tanner:

Yep, absolutely. So Tristan I want to really thank you for taking the time to do this interview. Is there anything that I did not ask you that you think might benefit the audience?

Don’t focus on what you should be doing in six months or 12 months time, focus on what is the next right thing for you right now.

Tristan:

I think the biggest thing is for people to make sure you focus on the next right thing. Don’t focus on what you should be doing in six months or 12 months time, focus on what is the next right thing for you right now.

Tanner:

In other words, focus on the present and not the future.

Tristan:

Yep. And don’t have shiny object syndrome. Don’t try and do too many things at once.

Tanner:

Yeah. I’m definitely guilty of that. Sometimes I try to take on way more than I can handle and I end up having to come back to reality. So that’s definitely great advice. So Tristan, what’s a good way for anyone listening to get in contact with you?

Tristan:

I think the simplest way is to jump on my website, which is evolvetogrow.com.au or into my Facebook group, which is called the Business Evolution.

Tanner:

Awesome, man, we’ll be sure to link up both of those in the show notes. And thank you again.

Tristan:

Excellent. Thanks for having me.

sTAY cONNECTED
get notified when new episodes are published

© 2022 Ranksey, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Free Download

EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW BEFORE HIRING A WEB DESIGN AGENCY

Free Download

EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW BEFORE HIRING A WEB DESIGN AGENCY

Learn everything you need to know to prevent making a costly mistake. Fill out the form below and we’ll email you the 19 page PDF!