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Are you looking to make a difference in the world?

There are many ways to impact, but one of the most important is eliminating inefficiency. In this interview, we explore how one step can create significant change. Join us as we discuss ways to make a difference and be a changemaker!

Jared Yellin is the founder of Project 10K. He’s a non-technical tech founder who found a way to scale his original tech company with ZERO dollars invested to over 40,000 paying users from around the world declared a moonshot in April of 2020. “I will build, scale, and sell 10,000 tech companies in 10 years.” This moonshot has been heard far and wide as some of the most influential people in the tech industry are yearning to play a role. Project 10K will democratize the tech industry by creating an even playing field for all.

—Jared Yellin

Topics covered in the interview

Jared’s first business
Building Rapport
Shifting during the pandemic
Taking the first step

Jared Yellin’s Bio

Jared is the founder of Project 10K.

He is a non-technical tech founder who found a way to scale his original tech company with ZERO dollars invested to over 40,000 paying users from around the world declared a moonshot in April of 2020. “I will build, scale, and sell 10,000 tech companies in 10 years.” This moonshot has been heard far and wide as some of the most influential people in the tech industry are yearning to play a role. Project 10K will democratize the tech industry by creating an even playing field for all.

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Show Notes

Read Full Transcript

Jared Yellin 00:00
There are billion dollar ideas. They just don't take themselves seriously enough to be the problem solver. There's this whole premise called change maker. They talk about this all the time for years. And I'm like, the difference be a change maker and a change talker is execution. People talk about the need for change, but they don't step into the space of making the change happen.

Susan Sly 00:18
Welcome to Raw and Real Entrepreneurship, the show that dares to bring no nonsense insight to those who have the courage to start, grow and scale a business. I'm your host, Susan Sly. What's up Raw and Real entrepreneurs, I hope you're having a great day, wherever you are in the world. And hey, I have a question for you. Have you ever had an idea and you're like, oh my gosh, that would make an amazing company and you're like, not doing it? Well guess what, my guest today is the absolute Guru. Guru means bringer of light, the bringer of light to people who have ideas and want to start tech companies. He is a tech founder. He's a tech investor. He's a visionary. He is a loving dad, and we might get into why he might be cancelled from birthday parties in a moment. But my guest today is the amazing Jared Yellin. Jared, thanks for being here.

Jared Yellin 01:12
Thank you, what an honor. I mean, this is so much fun. Like one of the things that I committed to when I stepped— I fully immersed myself in entrepreneurship when I was 20 years old, because I realized I was unemployable. So I figured I'm not gonna even try. But I committed to only doing business with people that I have fun with. And you absolutely are a blast. So thank you for this.

Susan Sly 01:29
Oh, absolutely.

Susan Sly 01:30
And many of the listeners know I have a philosophy, I will only do business with people that I would have at my dinner table with my children, though, in the story, I don't know if you're coming to my house now. But anyway, let me ask you this. What was your very first business?

Jared Yellin 01:44
My very first business. So when I was in second grade, I caused this. So I said to three of my friends like, we're launching this paper, and we're gonna sell to every single person in our grade. It's gonna be 25 cents for each of the articles or when do for a year or more they can get them all for 75 cents. And we literally sold it to every single person in our grade. And then I had one of my friends make the comic strip and he went really inappropriate with it like our first episode, first the article and the principal found out and they canceled us. And I had to give refunds to everybody. That was my first business, second grade, I thought we dominate literally 100% of the, of the grade block and we needed to give everybody a refund.

Susan Sly 02:26
Well,

Susan Sly 02:27
on Raw and Real Entrepreneurship, I have interviewed almost 300 entrepreneurs, like just people who crush it in like, Dave Asprey and Jesse Itzler, all these amazing people. I've heard lemonade stands, car washes. That is the first time I've ever heard newspaper. Wow!

Jared Yellin 02:44
I'll

Jared Yellin 02:44
try to find it and give you a copy. Because my has it. She was so proud. And he made this ridiculous comic strip. That was it, cancelled that quickly. It was an early cancel.

Susan Sly 02:53
It was an early cancel, Yeah. So it's sort of like armed for today in what's going on.

Jared Yellin 02:58
Yes, I'm fully prepared for it.

Susan Sly 02:59
So there, there's this misperception that successful tech founders all went to Harvard or Stanford, and they have PhDs like, What did you study in college?

Jared Yellin 03:10
Yes. So

Jared Yellin 03:11
I found the college that had the easiest application process, because I wasn't a student at all, like that was not my thing. And I went to Indiana University, I was in the business school there. And then when I got to school, I realized I don't want to learn in the classroom. Like that's just not what I want to do. So what I did was I started a personal training business, I was a natural bodybuilder, I never competed. It was really just for my own discipline. And I was, I was huge, but no one knew because I was always wearing sweatshirts and sweatpants to the gym, because it was just for me. But I lifted really heavy weights, that's how they knew. So I would incline bench press, I know you know a lot about this, over 400 pounds. Just 4 plates, and the rule in the gym was if you had over two plates, you had to have someone spot you. I'm like, that's a silly rule. But I'm like, Okay, I'm gonna have someone spot me, I'll find the smallest person in the gym to spot me. I'm doing over 400 pound inclines. I would seek them out, I find the smallest person to, come here, spot me. Like, I can't get that off your chest if you get stuck. I'm like, that's why you're spotting me because I won't get stuck because I have no way other than to push the weight up. But it really created a discipline with me. When I was in school, I realized I don't want to go to the classroom. So what I did was I started trading my business school professors. I started a personal training company, actually paid my way through college doing it, and all my professors were my clients. And the deal was you're gonna pay me so you take it seriously, and I'm not going to go to class. So tell me what I need to know to pass the exam. That's how I passed college.

Susan Sly 04:27
Nice. And I hope you're all listening to this because seriously, this whole concept of Jared didn't want to actually have to go to class and he turns it into a business and I know a lot of parents listen to my show with their kids in the car and they're gonna be like we're turning off this episode now. Jared Yellin is a bad influence on my child. We'll talk about that in a moment. But so once you, you know, come through personal training, when was the first like, business you started where you had suddenly, people relying on you. You had overhead, you had employees. When was that one?

Jared Yellin 05:06
when I graduated. So I graduated early. I took literally whatever took you out of the classroom, like I have to get out, I have too many ideas. And just the universe conspired for this really interesting first step for me. So I had a fellow graduate, he graduated a few years earlier than me, his name is Darrin Nix, he was working at McKenzie consulting in Chicago, and the partners that he was like, of the group he was part of said to him, there's an opportunity that exists in the reverse mortgage industry, because many baby boomers were coming of age, and they were house rich and cash poor. This was before the housing bust. And we want you to try to launch a tech company for the reverse mortgage industry. But we're guessing whether or not that demographic is going to want to use tech to go through the reverse mortgage process. You have to be over the age of 62, to actually get the reverse mortgage. And he was an engineer. So they said, we'll fund this entire venture, but you have to find someone to sell it. So he was like, where am I going to find someone to sell it? So he went back to the business school at Indiana University and said, Who's graduating earlier now and that can sell, and I built a good reputation for myself because I literally built this massive personal training business, but I was just selling myself to these professors. So they introduced us, we hit it off, I didn't even notice reverse mortgage was it. That's how much, it's so little I knew, I didn't even know what it was, I didn't know who the audience was, but the thought of co founding a company, a Chicago closet, it was a closet in downtown Chicago, 205 W Randolph street was our original office, we had $500,000 of pre seed investment for these guys from McKinsey and we built up the company. I sold out kind of early. So it wasn't like passionate, he went on to sell it further. It was such an incredible experience to the two of us. Literally in a closet, building this company out of nothing.

Jared Yellin 05:06
It was right

Susan Sly 06:39
Wow. And like, because this is Raw and Real Entrepreneurship, one of the stories people tell themselves is I can't do this because I don't know enough about an industry. And so from you know, what I'm hearing in your story is, that wasn't the case for you. And now, knowing you now as a friend, that still isn't the case for you. What is something like, looking at your life now, if you had to go back 10 years ago, what is something you've accomplished now that 10 years younger you would be just in awe ofright now?

Jared Yellin 07:14
It was probably even earlier. So I, when I was 19, 20 years old, I, it was my last summer before my last semester of college and like, I'm not doing this internship thing, like that's just not what I want to do. I'm not that guy. I'm gonna get fired.

Susan Sly 07:28
Kids, we're disclaiming this whole episode. We don't swear on Raw and Real Entrepreneurship, but we're just disclaiming, stay in school, stay in school.

Jared Yellin 07:37
I want to do something that's gonna stick with me for a lifetime. So I was going through a newspaper, actually, and I saw this article. The article was we are looking for people that want to sell. They're competitive, they're athletic, but most people will fail. And I'm like, Well, I'm not gonna fail. So it really spoke to me. So I called the number. I get, come in for your first interview. And it was a company that did door to door sales who were selling merchant processing, so credit card processing in Manhattan and Brooklyn. And they literally, in the interview process, they say most people won't make it. So it's just you know, like, you can give it a shot, but most will make, what they're trying like to speak into your competitiveness. So I gave it a shot. And I obviously was hired at 100% commissions, they hire anyone who's willing to even try it. And it's really interesting. It told me you need to see 100 businesses a day to get one sale. So the competitive Jared is like, I'm gonna see 150. So I'm in Coney Island. Okay, Coney Island in Brooklyn is a really tough territory. Like I was on the subway for three hours a day to go from midtown Manhattan to Coney Island. And I went door to door and I sold 150 businesses every day, Monday through Friday, guess how many sales I got? The Big Donut, zero. Not one sale. I went home that weekend. I'm like, I can't do this. Like the first time my life like, I just flat out failed. Like, I can't muscle my way through. I just can't figure it out. So I said okay, on Monday, if I don't get a sale, I just don't have what it takes. So I'm like, I'm gonna push and I went heavy and hard that morning. I saw 100 businesses by like two o'clock in the afternoon like, I was pushing so hard. No, no, no, no, like, this is crazy to me. So all of a sudden it starts to pour. It was like a torrential downpour. And that was the one rule, it it rained just come back to the office. So I'm still in Coney Island, like an hour and 45 minutes subway to the office, soaking wet. I run to this cupcake shop. And I just feel disgruntled, disgraced, I feel like a loser. And I'm sitting there just feeling badly about myself. And all of a sudden, the person I was working there said, Why are you so upset? And I said, Well, I just failed. I just opened up like, I've seen 1000 businesses in six days and not one of them have said yes. He says, what are you selling? I said credit card processing. He says well, you're not gonna believe it. I just opened up this cupcake shop. And today one of my items on my to do list is to get credit card processing. Let me sign up with you. I got a full load which means the machine and the actual processing, and that was my fund, single, like all I needed was a single just to get the process started. That night I went home and I said, What was the difference between that conversation and the 1000 others? And what I realized was I wasn't building rapport at all. I was just like churning through people going door to door. I was told 100 businesses a day. So on Tuesday morning, I go into the the manager of the office and I say, What do you care about more, the one sale or the 100 doors that goes don't even try, like others have had the same conversation with me to see the 100 doors. It's the law of average. I'm like, but tell me, what do you care about more? He goes, the one sale. I'm like, Cool. That day, I only saw 10 doors, and I got four sales. But I started to build rapport. I asked people three questions. What are you most proud of in your business? What are you most excited about today? And what's your vision for the future? Those are the three things I asked and I genuinely cared. And if I was able to help them to get to where they wanted to get to faster by saying yes to me, then I was able to sell them. I got 4 to 10 sales, and I became the number one salesperson in the entire country. That changed my entire life forever. Because once I knew that I could communicate, use words to help somebody see a vision and make a buying decision, I'm like, I could do anything. And that was a pivotal moment for me.

Susan Sly 11:03
How did— I love that story. And building rapport is so huge, because as Harvey Mackay says, Our network defines our net worth. So how did the pandemic shift, how you built rapport?

Jared Yellin 11:17
Yeah, so it's so interesting that you asked that, because that's when this journey really began, like my calling happened in April of 2020, like the pandemic was March, the first week of March of 2020. And I felt this calling, and the calling was to build, scale and sell 10,000 tech companies over the next 10 years. And when I look back, I know why I was called to do it then. There was millions of people displaced. Millions of people that were told go work from home. And these were people that were in corporate that finally had a chance to experience freedom, finally, and they're like, I'm never going back. Like when we need to go back, I'm not going back. So I have, however much time that we're going to be displaced, to figure out my next move. And that next move for many of them is become a tech founder with us. And that is really enjoyable for me, because that is freedom for them. Like they're no longer have to slave at the desk, if that's not what they want for their life. And it really gave them a chance to step up and step into their big, their bold, and their audacious.

Susan Sly 12:14
That's huge.

Susan Sly 12:15
And so we're sitting hereyou know, 74.3% of Americans say they're unhappy with their job. We have record levels of inflation, we have tremendous economic uncertainty, you and I are of the age where we remember what things were like coming into the recession. In your opinion, and shifting for a moment, because I think, you know, one of the biggest things that I always asked all my friends is to speculate on things because it takes a certain boldness to put your opinions out there. So in your opinion, right now, to the people who say, this is a horrible time to start a business, what is your response to that?

Jared Yellin 12:51
never been a better time, like the past two years, and maybe this lasts for longer, who knows, but the past two years has created so much turbulence and so much uncertainty, and so much opportunity. There's so much inefficiency that has been exposed because of the past two years, and those that decide to do something about it. They don't like talk about it, they execute on it. Well build generational wealth, and generational impact and legacy. This is the time like, this is not, I'm not trying to hype you up at all, just you know this, I don't want to hype you up. I just want to move you into action. The world is looking for lions, they're looking for leaders, they're looking for people that are going to commit to solving the inefficiencies that exist. And there's just so many of them. So pick the thing that matters to you most that you're most uniquely qualified to do. Just execute on it.

Jared Yellin 12:51
There's

Susan Sly 13:40
The world is looking for lions, are you hearing this right? And, and I love what you said, it's never been a better time. So we look at businesses that were started during the recession, Instagram, Uber, these massive multi billion dollar companies that were started during a time of tremendous economic uncertainty, stagnation, recession. Some people may or may not remember there was a pandemic called SARS in 2009. So it's interesting how history repeats itself. So pandemic, threat of war we have, you know, a massive recession and yet these businesses we all have come to rely on now we're started in someone's living room, on a napkin, you know, over like a phone call when we used to call people like saying, Hey, I have this idea. Let's talk about this. So it's one thing to have an idea, it's another thing to execute. So few people actually execute. What in your opinion gives people the courage to take that first step?

Jared Yellin 14:40
Yeah, they need to notice, they need to take themselves seriously enough. Because I am positive, everybody has an idea, like nobody has like a little black book or in their phone, a little notepad of like, their billion dollar ideas. They just don't take themselves seriously enough to be the problem solver. There's this whole premise called change makers. I talk about this all the time for years. And I'm like, what, the difference to a change maker and a change talker is execution. People talk about the need for change, but they don't step into the space of making the change happen. So it's take, step one is take yourself seriously enough to be the solution to the problem. And then execute on your dream before somebody else does. And commit and figure out the details later. If you need to figure out the details before you commit, I can guarantee you're never going to commit, because there's too many details. Yeah. I felt called to build scale and sell 10,000 tech companies over the next 10 years, if I had to figure out all those details, we would not be having this conversation. There's too many things to figure out. So just commit, and then commit to figure out the details as you go. All you have to do is outpace your need, just outpace it. That's how you got to where you are, you just always help pace the knee. And then as a result, you'll be able to build this epic life.

Susan Sly 15:51
Yeah. And

Susan Sly 15:51
it's really about learning as you're going because procrastination is another, you know, form— perfection rather, is another form of procrastination. That's why I always teach people, right. And so back in 2018, I had this idea for a piece of tech architecture. I have not coded anything, as you know, since '92. And it was going to be a wearable biometric feedback. So I had this concept, I knew who the ideal customer was. But the thing that was holding me up was, how would I get it built? Raising money, getting it out to the market, that stuff didn't faze me, but just the daunting task of how to get it built. And so here you are, with this vision, the 10k vision to launch 10,000 tech companies the next 10 years to launch them, grow them, and scale them, and sell them, which is like insane is a huge vision. And yet, you're opening the doors to people who don't know how to code, who don't know how to build technology. How is that going to work?

Jared Yellin 15:55
It's me.

Susan Sly 16:06
You're coding, No.

Jared Yellin 16:09
No but it's me because it's the fact that I don't know how to code. I don't know how to build tenchnology. I'm a non tech, tech founder. Yeah. My first tech company, I did literally every single thing that you could do wrong, other than I just kept on holding on, I just wouldn't quit. And as a result of that, that tech company has 40,000 paying users now. There's not an engineering you only in my body, like not one, like I'm non technical, like completely non technical. I know how to write marketing copy, and I know how to sell. And once I figured out how to do it one time, and then I became obsolete. That's what happened April 2020, I became obsolete in my first tech company. It should be every entrepreneurs dream. Get to the point where you're not needed. I was not needed add not wanted. My team's like, You got to find something else to do. Like you're just in the way. I'm like, wow, not needed and not wanted. Like, that's liberating. Like I don't attach my self worth to that. So I'm like, this is liberating. What's next? I was 35 years old, two young kids, happily married, and we got a really good life. And I could have just kind of chill, but I couldn't just chill. Same way with you. If you could just— you're good. Like you've got all— you got it. But you don't, you have this burning desire for more impact. Yeah. Like you have a burning desire to be a catalyst for 1000 Female tech founders, right? Like it's just it gives me goosebumps even saying it. So for me, I'm like, what's next? And that's when the calling hit. I just felt it. I'm like, What's next for me in this next chapter is my moonshot. I'm going to do something that shakes up the world. Or I'm going to go down try. That's it. That's all that I could see. It's all that I knew that I was thinking about, what's relevant for me for my moonshot? In my first tech company, I personally invested two years and $2 million, had to scrap the product, because I outsource development, and then start over to build we have today. And I committed in that moment to make the technology industry safe. Because it just isn't safe for most people. No. Like, it's just not safe, who you trust worthy, especially if you're not tech, or even if you're technical. It's not really safe. So I'm like, okay, moonshot moment, I'm going to make the technology industry safe. And I'm going to have build, scale and sell 10,000 tech companies over the next 10 years.

Susan Sly 18:57
And where did the number 10,000 come from?

Jared Yellin 18:59
Don't know, the calling.

Jared Yellin 19:00
You can't negotiate against the moonshot. Just can't! You can never negotiate when you have your calling. 10,000 was the number, I felt called to do it. I didn't negotiate it, I didn't question, I accepted it. I said, Okay, universe paying me. This is my responsibility now. Not for me. It's not about me. My mom was asking me recently, how do you know you made it? Like when project 10k accomplishes the outcome and no one knows who started it. Like no one knows. Because it's not about me, it's gonna require a village, it's goind to require you, it's gonna require the 10,000 founders, the hundreds of thousands of investors, the millions of supporters and advisors, and even the naysayers, the doubter. Like I always say, there's three ways you can help. You can doubt me because it's energy, like I love energy and you have energy, right? You could, you could come on for the ride and be a founder, or you can just watch, but all of that is attention. Like that's it. All of that is attention and I strive to get attention for the right reason. That's what I committed to doing.

Susan Sly 19:00
Yeah.

Susan Sly 19:57
Yeah, I love that. And it's, it's such a huge vision. When you really think about the failure rate in Silicon Valley is 90%. So, you know, all those people, and if you don't know what that process usually looks like, traditionally is you've got some people, they're starting a company, then they're going out and raising money. Usually, it's like Uncle Bob and your cousin, and they're, you know, they're putting in this money. And with such a high failure rate, and a lot of founders end up with depression, they end up with addiction. This is Raw and Real Entrepreneurship, you know, they end up having divorce, all sorts of problems. And the the biggest thing I see lacking is the lack of support. It is really lonely. And everyone says, you know, they look at someone like Elon Musk. So Elon, and my husband and I actually went to Queen's University in Canada. So we all went to the same university. But you know, you look at Elon and he, he has three unicorn companies. And he was a co founder in PayPal, obviously a great entrepreneur. I love his tweets, if you're not following Elon on Twitter, you need to because it's, it's fascinating. But he also has a string of failed relationships. He has, you know, this, this whole personal life in shambles, but he's also changing a lot of people's lives. And in my opinion, Jared, it doesn't have to be that way. I think you can have it all. You can have a healthy relationship, you can be healthy yourself. You and I both come from the health world. And you can build a massive company that might sell for $10 million, $50 million, 100 million, 500 million, or maybe you hit the unicorn territory. But you don't have to make those sacrifices as long as you are surrounded with the right people who are going to help you.

Jared Yellin 21:42
Yeah. So when I was 20 years old, I don't have ever told you this story. I was 20 years old, I had this this realization, which was eventually I'm going to be a dad. Now I knew it wasn't when I was 20. And most 20 year old young men are not thinking about becoming a dad unless they're going to become a dad. But the reason I was, I was reflecting on my child. And when I was five years old, my parents went through an extremely intense divorce. I'm sure there was more intense divorces than theirs. But it was, it was grueling. And if anybody were to ask me like, What's one word to define your childhood? I would say loud. Like, there was just, there was nowhere to go for peace. It was just like a roller coaster of money, no money, restraining order. And I'm like a very inquisitive person. So I'm like, I want to understand it. So I'm 20 years old. I'm thinking about my child. And I'm like, this is a point of demarcation for me. I can make a decision today that will forever change my future kids' lives. What does it look like to be a dad? And the word freedom showed up for me. Well, I've never heard that word before. I'm sure I've heard it, but ever, like thought of it before, ever. And it gave me, it gives me goosebumps every time I share this, I don't really share this very often. It's like, what is freedom? So I broke it down to 12 different areas, for my health to my geographics and economics to my career. And then when I ever have these big thoughts, I start writing. So I got my laptop out. And I started writing out what freedom meant to me. And I wrote seven pages of content, 30 minutes across all of these different areas. And I'm like, wow, and then I started reading it. And that's really when my whoa happened. Because I'm like, I don't know, anyone that has this life. But there's no one that I know that has it all like this. I want what no one else that I know has, I have to do what no one else has done. And I just immersed myself into entrepreneurships. Now fast forward 17 years later from that point, I'm a dad, I have a five year old daughter named Kaylee, a three year old little rock star son named Riker. I'm happily married. And we have it all. Like we have it all. Five o'clock, every day boundary set, I'm with my kids. Phone on the side, 100% focused. Here's what I want to make sure that you hear. When you work with us, you commit to having it all. I tell our founders all the time, I will help you build, scale and sell your company. But if your kids hate you, or your spouse divorces you, I failed you. I failed you. It's not just about the exit. It's about who you become on the journey to the exit. Become the better parent, the better significant other, have your health improved. And I call these things out with our founders because that's what we're doing here. It's not just about the exit, but who you become in the journey to the exit.

Susan Sly 24:03
And because you inspire people by your works, right? And in 2007 When I wrote the book, Have It All Women you know, it was endorsed by Jack Canfield, Dr. John Gray. And I had a lot of pushback, because people are like, you can't have it all. And then you had different people out there who were saying, Oh, you can have it all, just not all at one time that was written about in the Huffington Post. And so, you know, Forbes magazine calls me up. I'm in Hong Kong, and I'm like waiting for my plane. They're like, we want a quote because, oh, suddenly we're coming into something called a recession and men are getting fired more often than women. You wrote a book called The Have It All Women. How is it that women can have it all when we're in a recession? And I, here's what I said, having it all is a personal definition. Just like success is a personal definition. And when you understand that that definition is personal, then you free yourself of what you think having it all looks like. And that is so liberating. And going back to that piece of freedom. And so, you know, here, Chris and I are— like you, my parents went through a very toxic divorce, lots of fighting, there was a kidnapping, I got kidnapped, you know, the list goes on and on and on. And I look at it. And for a lot of the things that I have, a 22 year relationship with my husband, you know, all of it. I've had to shift who I was in that process, and show up as a new version of myself to live into something I had never experienced. And the same thing is true about founding a tech company. When I became the co founder of Radius, I hadn't written code since 1992. I had been in the health industry, then the digital marketing industry. And, and here I am. And of course, I had imposter syndrome. And I was like, Oh, my gosh, you know, what, what do I need to do to shift into who these investors, we have 76 investors, who the investors need me to be. You know, we do a $7.1 million funding round. And there were nights I didn't sleep because I was like, We need to get this product into the market so we can make money and give those investors some surety plus, we had staff to pay and all of it. And I realized that in order to live into that version of myself, I had to shift a couple things. Number one, who I was being and number two, who I was hanging out with. And that's when things began to shift. I surrounded myself with different people. Anyone who only chose to see me in a certain narrative, I still love them, but they were not part of my, let's go for a hike, let's go for a glass of wine club. Those people just didn't serve the new person I was living into. And the vision with the tech founders is, and I want you all to hear this, is that becoming a tech founder, taking your idea to a point of inception, and then growing a company, scaling it and selling it, you will become someone, a best version of you that you can't even conceive exists yet. And that's, you know, one of the things that's so exciting about entrepreneurship is who you become in the process. And that's why I'm so excited to partner with you. Because when we have that initial conversation, you said, we want marriages to stay intact. We want families to stay intact. We want you to be healthy, right? We don't want you to be that person on the commuter flight at six in the morning downing you know, Bloody Marys. We want you to have it all, literally. I was like, I have been talking about this since 2007. Like yes, I'm a yes, yeah.

Jared Yellin 27:33
Who you are embodies this too, right. So one of the things that that is so important, like, I want to, I'm speaking literally to you right now. Like you have this moonshot within you. Everybody does. Everybody has something in them that's so much bigger than them. They just don't let them go. Then all those go there. They start to feel silly. They were told, like play it small, be safe. And that just keeps suppressing what you're ultimately meant to do. And listen, when you do it, you're gonna dance between fear and enthusiasm within every minute of every day. Yeah. And I wake up in fear and then I take my first step with enthusiasm, and I shower with fear and then I have breakfast with enthusiasm, like, and it's so beautiful. It's so beautiful, because the fear, it'll humble you and your enthusiasm's going to drive you and you epitomize it. You go after big, bold outcomes, like you commit and you're, like, detail figured out, like as you go, and yet you have the life with your husband, your kids, like what you've done with, even adopting kids. It's, it's what entrepreneurship's meant to be. And you define it your own way. Like you said like you defy it. But don't, don't feel like you have to let go of the things that matter to you in order to be successful. I didn't know this though. So when I first launched my first tech company, I met now my wife, two weeks prior to two weeks before I launched the company, I literally met the woman that I knew I was gonna marry. I'm like certain that she was it. And for some advice, like don't meet somebody two weeks before you launch your first company.

Jared Yellin 28:29
And best proposal ever on YouTube. It has over a million views. FYI, we'll put it in the show notes.

Jared Yellin 29:09
So, but I had this limiting belief. The limiting belief was I can either have a successful relationship or be successful as an entrepreneur. Guess what wins, the limiting belief always wins, right? So the limiting belief defeated me in that moment. I became a really successful entrepreneur that had this relationship that started to just crumble. I'll never forget, one night I got into bed, it was four o'clock in the morning. Lindsey pokes me about, my routine like 20 hour days because it just got big fast. She pokes me and she says I want to let you know something. I said, what? And she goes, I feel like I'm an inconvenience in your life, and she rolled over. And I was laying there, and I could have been like, mad, like do you know what I'm working for you? Or I could have said, Like I can't believe you're feeling this way. And instead, I smiled. And the reason I smiled was that was another point of demarcation for me. I committed that night never let her feel like an inconvenience ever again. Because if that's how the most important person in my life felt, there was something wrong in my life. I had to commit to solving it. Take personal responsibility to have your all, whatever that is. Whatever that is, and don't negotiate against it.

Susan Sly 30:09
Take personal responsibility to have your all. And that, that next step is often terrifying for people to be able to say, Okay, I'm not working 20 hour days anymore. And they want, you know, just to quit their job or to say, to stop. It's not often the way things actually happen. It begins with usually a small step in the right direction, right? And, and the, the thing you and I are going to be talking about, on a live event coming up, and there will be a replay of it, is the courage to take that first step and the courage to say, You know what, my life might be great, or I might be having some challenges, but I believe there is unrealized genius inside me and what if, what if I could take an idea and start a tech company? What if I could be surrounded by people who weren't going to let me fail? What if I could be surrounded by people who would market with me, sell with me, ideate with me, get the tech product built with me, get the MVP out. What if I could be with people to help me fundraise, and that I could be part of this massive 10k vision? Right? And that's, that's why I'm so excited about what we're building. I mean, it's, it's its legacy. It is really legacy. Well,

Jared Yellin 31:24
let me reverse on you. What's your moonshot? Now?

Susan Sly 31:27
The moonshot for me is thinking about 10 years from now, which I gulp and go, Oh my gosh, I'm going to be 60. And as an aside, Mitzi Perdue came into my life, and if you don't know who Mitzi is, Mitzi was, she's the heir of the Sheraton fortune. And then she married Frank Perdue of the poultry produce. And Mitzi was the first woman to get a master's in computer science from Harvard back in the day, she's in her 70s. So I was talking to her one day, and I was like, so, you know, what do you do last night? She was like, I was up until 2am, coding. So I'm like, so I used to have this like, oh, 60 You know, what is that going to look like? And you know, what is your Oprah moment? And, and I think about it now, and I'm like, 60's still really young. And I'm so fired up about that. But to look back at 60 ago, wow, I helped 1000 women who were maybe not technical, but just beautiful people, very driven, believed that they had something to share with the world. I helped 1000 of them launch tech companies, grow those tech companies, scale those tech companies, co found alongside them, and sell those tech companies. And that means 1000 parties, which means that some of those parties will have 80's DJs because that is a big thing for me. Like it's just Yes, everything. Yes.

Jared Yellin 32:47
I hope that like, lights this audience up. I mean, that's, that's a moon shot. Like, and it's you know what it is? It's not a moonshot to you, it's your reality shot. Yes. That's what it is. 10 years it happens, this ecosystem of 1000, we call them sexy tech founders, these 1000 women who have just stepped up and stepped into solving that inefficiency, to solving the problem within their industry, solving the thing that's missing in their country. Like I have people pitching me on country solutions. I'm like, Whoa, like something that doesn't exist here in the US like, or even a cattle like, like in Africa, people pitches, these countries solutions that we've already solved here. They're like, it doesn't exist here. And when we do it here, it's not even just about the financial impact, like it's gonna change generations to come. That's the power of tech. That's what we're doing with Fem Boss. I mean it lights my, I have a five year old daughter, like she's a Fem Boss already.

Susan Sly 33:45
She is, like, I'm excited just for the T shirts to come in. If you're on YouTube, and the reason we're shooting here in the studio today, you can see the gorgeous background. And anyone who applies, I'll get a notification that you have applied. And I will send you a note and then anyone who's coming through this process, which you get to learn more about. And all you need to do is go to fembossincubator.com/webinar, or go to Susansly.com. And even if you miss the live event, you can get the replay. It's, it's really about people who are looking for the courage to take the next small step. You know, as you're hearing Jared's story, it isn't about big steps. It's about that next small step. It's about the love of your life, tapping you on the shoulder at four in the morning and saying, I feel like an inconvenience. And what was that next step that you took the next day to change that iteration? It's just huge. I want to shift gears for a minute. So you, you recently were at a birthday party with your son, and you might be, you might be banned from birthday parties.

Jared Yellin 34:54
Don't invite me to your birthday party. So it's having a catch, Riker, is a three year old. He's like my little man. Every day he wakes up he goes, Look at my muscles today. Keep doing that forever, forever. So we're having a catch with this, this beach ball. That was probably four times the size of Riker. So bad judgment right there. And I'm just rolling it to him. And for some reason, every parent is watching me. Every parent, there's like 50 families that are watching me roll this beach ball back and forth to Riker. And then he goes, Daddy, throw it to me. So I'm like, yeah, why not? I'm going to throw you a beach ball. So I throw the beach ball. I have good— I was pitcher. I have a good aim. Like it was going right into his hands and then all of a sudden, a little gust of wind comes and it just— picture this, it catches the beach ball. It goes over his little three year old fingers over his head to his little buddy Jaden. And it was Jaden's birthday. And Jaden was walking on the edge. You can see the edge here of the pool, and the ball hits him on the side that knocks him into the pool with his birthday outfit on. And we're in Miami, and when the pools aren't heated, it's still kind of chilly, he's screaming. He could swim, he gets pulled out of the pool. He's just soaked. Every parent there is biting their tongue not to laugh because the sequence of events was so ridiculous. And I'm on the blacklist. I will never been invited in a three year old party ever again.

Susan Sly 36:10
You will be invited to all of the successful exit parties, but not the birthday parties.

Jared Yellin 36:16
Just don't walk on the edge of the pool when I have a beach ball in my hand. Yeah.

Susan Sly 36:19
And they'll walk on the edge of the pool if there's like an 80s DJ or Steve Aoki is DJ, because I would just like, might be dancing so crazy that we all end up in a pool together. Jared, you know, before we wrap this, this episode up, you know, what, 10, let's go 10 years from now, you know, you're, you're in the shadow of your 50th birthday. You know, the kids, you know, think about it. They're in their teens, which like, has blown my mind. I used to think, oh my gosh, I dread it when my kids are teenagers. And it's like, they become like my best friends. I love hanging out with them. My youngest, Emery is 12. She's not quite there yet. So it's 10 years from now. What's going on for you?

Jared Yellin 37:01
We did it. We did it. My mom asked me this thing. I mentioned this to you. So my mom asked me how do you know you made it? Like how do you know you made it? Because it's evolution, that's big. I'm like, when no one even knows that I started it. But then I can look down and be like we just did 10,000 people from around the world who are able to launch and scale and then sell their tech company. The impact of this, economically, obviously is significant. But with regards to eliminating inefficiency from literally around the world, that's when I know we did it. So listen, we're in a stadium, we're in a stadium, and I don't know where, what stadium is gonna fit us because it's not just our tech founders, it's the other change makers who have invested in the incubators, the 100 changemakers. It's that hundreds of 1000s of investors that invested in all of these companies. It's all the supporters too. All our strategic alliances. So we need like a stadium that can handle like at least a few million people. But there's some place that we are made. It's an open field. And I'm just there, just one of the million. I'm not the guy. I'm one of the million knowing that together, we achieve more. And I've been saying this, you can ask the original syndicate team like from Day Zero, every day we meet, we put our hands in just like this. And we say together. The reason we say this is because Together Everyone Achieves more, period. And now we've just built the model to do it. We built a model so that you don't feel like you're on an island by yourself. Because entrepreneurship is lonely if you're not in an ecosystem, but an ecosystem, it's empowering, it's liberating, because they shared everything. They share success, they shared press, they share economics, they share relationships, they share support. And that's what I stand to do. That's how I know 10 years I look, we're like, we have a feel like, we like, we overeat, we took on an island like that's what it is. It's like a million plus people that have contributed to the four minute mile of entrepreneurship.

Susan Sly 38:50
We'll be taking over city is what we're gonna be doing, and you think about how do you get involved with that. So the, this is the official open, Jared and I are going to be doing a live event, you definitely want to be there. And this, the Fem Boss Incubator, the vision is 1000 women and you might be wondering, Can men apply? The answer is yes. You know, do does it matter how old you are? The answer is no. Does it matter what country you're in? The answer is no, that does not matter. What all that matters is you take that first initial step, that first small step, everything great in your life you've heard this the saying, a journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step. Take that first step, go watch our webinar, fill out the application because we want you to succeed. There has never at— all this stuff I've seen in Silicon Valley in New York and Wall Street, everywhere, I have never seen anything like this and I'm just so excited to partner with you. And if you are watching on YouTube, check out the gorgeous background. As I said, if you're listening on wherever you're listening, Spotify, iTunes, Amazon, everywhere, go check out the YouTube, check out the background. This is the new Fem Boss Incubator logo. And for the successful applicants, you're going to get this beautiful swag box. Oh my gosh, it's gonna, you're just going to be like, the boss in your town. It's going to be amazing. Or the boss in your house. You already are the boss in your house but you're going to definitely be the boss. And so go and check that out. And if this episode has inspired you, share it, tag Jared and I on social. We would love a five star review as well. And just know Raw and Real Entrepreneurship is ultimately comes down to that courage to take that first step. So Jared Yellin, thanks for being here.

Jared Yellin 40:33
Thank you. You're amazing. I'm honored to be here. Listen, let's do it. Right. Let's go together on 3. 1, 2, 3

Susan Sly 40:39
Together! And with that this has been another episode of Raw and Real Entrepreneurship. I will see you in the next episode.

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Author Susan Sly

Susan Sly is the CEO and Founder of Step Into Your Power Inc., the Co-CEO of RadiusAI, keynote speaker, best-selling author, and tech investor. Susan has been featured on CNN, CNBC, Fox, Lifetime, ABC Family, and quoted in Forbes Online, Marketwatch, Yahoo Finance, and more. She is the mother of five and has been working in human potential for over two decades.

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