Brian Scudamore

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Brian Scudamore is the founder and CEO of O2E Brands, the parent company for 1-800-GOT-JUNK, WOW 1 DAY PAINTING, You Move Me, and Shack Shine. He’s a consistent contributor to Forbes, who writes about small business ownership, franchising, creating and cultivating a strong corporate culture and much more and he’s been featured on Doctor Phil multiple times. Brian Scudamore’s first book is titled, WTF?! (Willing to Fail): How Failure Can Be Your Key to Success.

Brian Scudamore - Podcasts

  • 1-800-GOT-JUNK founder Brian Scudamore on How to Nail and Scale Any Business Model

    Brian Scudamore is the founder and CEO of O2E Brands, the parent company for 1-800-GOT-JUNK, WOW 1 DAY PAINTING, You Move Me, and Shack Shine. He’s been featured on Doctor Phil multiple times. His first book is titled, WTF?! (Willing to Fail): How Failure Can Be Your Key to Success.

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  • Clay:
    Yes, yes, yes. And Thrive Nation, on today’s show, we have an incredible guest. This guy is the CEO of the O2E brands. The parent company of 1-800-GOT-JUNK. WOW 1 DAY PAINTING I said, “WOW 1 DAY PAINTING.” You Move Me and Shack Shine. Ladies and gentlemen, the man, the myth, the legend, Mr. Brian Scudamore, welcome on to The Thrive Time Show. How are you sir?

    Brian Scudamore:
    Well, I don’t need any more coffee. Thank you, Clay. That is quite the introduction and huge energy. Thank you so much for having me on your show.

    Clay:
    Well, I’m excited to have you on the show. My partner and friend Jonathan Barnett has built a major, a very successful franchise in Oxi Fresh carpet cleaning and we’re always hearing the praise reports or how great your brands are doing. So I’d like to kind of start at the bottom if we can here. When did you get the idea to first start 1-800-GOT-JUNK?

    Brian Scudamore:
    I was in a McDonald’s drive through of all places. There I was a beat up old pickup truck in front of me. I had just dropped out of high school. I was one course short of graduation. All my friends were going to college and so I figured I needed to follow them, but first it meant talking my way in to college. I met with the admissions group and and said, “You know what? I’m smart enough. I can do this. Even without a high school diploma.” They somehow gave me a chance. And then I needed to find the money to pay for it.

    Brian Scudamore:
    So I was in that McDonald’s drive through, there’s a beat up old pickup truck in front of me with plywood sides on the box. It said Mark’s Hauling across the truck. And I was like, “Wow, that’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to go buy myself a pickup. I’m going to start hauling junk.” And there I was 18 years old running a business that in two weeks paid for itself.

    Clay:
    Awesome.

    Brian Scudamore:
    By The end of the summer gave me enough money for college and was off to the races.

    Clay:
    No, it was 1979 right?

    Brian Scudamore:
    1989. I’m not quite that old-

    Clay:
    ’89, ’89.

    Brian Scudamore:
    … but sometimes I feel it.

    Clay:
    Well yeah, I was going to say, because you look like you’re drinking a lot of fish oil. You look like a young man. I was wondering if this was in 1999, I wasn’t sure. Okay. Now you said you bought this first truck, am I correct? Was it $700 or $7,000 how much money did you spend on that truck?

    Brian Scudamore:
    Yeah, 700 bucks. It was my life savings. I had $1,000 in the bank, 700 on the truck, the rest on flyers and business cards and then off I went to start building a business. Which ironically there I am in college learning more about business by running a business more than I was studying entrepreneurship in school. So I made the bold decision to drop out. My father is a liver transplant surgeon, he’s done more schooling than most people I’ve ever met. And you can imagine when I sat down to say, “Hey dad, I got a year left of college. I’m dropping out because I’m learning more about business by running one.” He thought it was a foolish decision, but certainly is onside with that decision today.

    Clay:
    Did he name your company Rubbish Boys? Who named the company? He said, “This company’s crap, we’re going to call it Rubbish Boys.” Who named the company Rubbish Boys?

    Brian Scudamore:
    But that would be me. I wanted to name it something that sounded bigger than just me. So it was the Rubbish Boys, it was plural, it was a vision for something greater. And I started hiring friends and they would be fellow college students and they would be running the business along side of me, we’d build it together. And yeah, it was a ton of fun and continues to be fun almost 30 years later.

    Clay:
    Now when you started this company in 1989, my understanding is you guys hit $1 million in revenue in ’97. Is that correct?

    Brian Scudamore:
    Yeah. So it took us eight years to get to a million in revenue, which is pretty slow growth. I was excited when we got there. But the fun part is today we do $1 million on any given day. So eight years nice and slow and then boom, the ramp up through franchising, finding the right franchise partners and a great team of people and we’ve been able to accelerate things significantly.

    Clay:
    Do you have a favorite band? Like a favorite 1990s, 80s band. A favorite rap group. Do you have a favorite music group?

    Brian Scudamore:
    Ah gee. A lot of British stuff. What was I into? I was into New Order. The Cure. I love the new wave type.

    Clay:
    Oh, wow.

    Brian Scudamore:
    Yeah, I know a little. Yeah, I was probably wearing eyeliner back in the day.

    Clay:
    Really? Okay. So you into Cure, you’re into The Cure. And when you’re into The Cure you know how a lot of times these bands, they break up, they get into disagreements? They say, “Hey we should stop wearing eyeliner.”

    Clay:
    “No we need to stick with the eyeliner.”

    Clay:
    “We need to change it up.”

    Clay:
    “No, we got to…” Next thing you know, they ended up breaking up. Then they get back together and they perform at a casino. My understanding is that you guys, you decided to break up the band. You said, “Listen, Rubbish Boys, rubbish guys, rubbish dudes. No.” Did you fire everybody at the same time?

    Brian Scudamore:
    Fired my entire company. I had 11 people in the band, so to speak. They were employees, not partners. But I sat down one day and I said, “I’m not having fun. I’m not smiling anymore. I’m not happy with my business. The fun is gone away.” And so I sat down with my team and I just said, “Guys, I hate to do this but this isn’t working for me. I either didn’t bring in the right people, didn’t give you the love and support and you needed. But this is a leadership issue. This is my problem. And time to own up and start again.” One bad apple spoils the whole bunch. Had nine bought bad apples and got them all out of the business. And the next day went from five trucks down to one.

    Brian Scudamore:
    And if you think of the analogy again of a band, a one man band is tough to play the guitar and the drums and sing and do it all at once. And so it was a struggling point for me for the next several months. But I learned that, you know what a business is all about people. Finding the right people and training them right became my focus.

    Clay:
    How did you fire them all? Did you say, “Hey guys, come here. I got all secret. Let’s just all gather around. You’re fired.” I mean, did you do it nicely? Did you freak out? Did you throw things? What happened?

    Brian Scudamore:
    Yeah, I think I got real and sat down with everybody and just brought them in the room at one point together and ripped off the bandaid and said, “I’m so sorry.” I started by apologizing because it really was my leadership challenge and it was no one else’s fault. These were people that weren’t clean-cut, professional, they had a bit of attitude. They weren’t the ones that I needed to help me build the FedEx of junk removal is what I started talking about.

    Brian Scudamore:
    And so it was time to clean house and it was a tough thing for me to do. A scary thing for me to do. You can imagine one guy in a little office with 11 other guys, many of them bigger than me saying, “What? You’re firing us, we’re losing our job? Are you kidding me?” It was a scary moment, but it was the right thing to do and my business wouldn’t be what it is today hadn’t I made that scary decision.

    Clay:
    What town did you start your company in? Where was this geographically?

    Brian Scudamore:
    Yeah, Vancouver in Canada. So I grew up in San Francisco. I lived there at least till I was seven or eight years old. Mother remarried, moved to Canada. And that’s where I started the business and that’s where we are today.

    Clay:
    If you could export one Canadian. Okay, let’s say you could export Justin Bieber or Brian Adams in favor of, you could make a swap for a bunch of more new high quality, highly high motivated a 1-800-GOT-JUNK franchisees. Which Canadian would you give up? Would you give us Bieber? Would you give us Bryan Adams? Who would you give up?

    Brian Scudamore:
    I like Brian Adams. Brian Adams is a good guy. I would give you, yeah, you know what? You could probably have Bieber. You could take the Biebs.

    Clay:
    You give us Bieber. Really?

    Brian Scudamore:
    Yeah, you could have the Biebs.

    Clay:
    What I heard, and I could be wrong, but I heard that the GDP of Canada’s comprised of shale exploration, 1-800-GOT-JUNK. Brian Adams, Bieber and Canadian beer. That’s what I heard the entire economy is comprised. You’re going to give one fifth of the economy away?

    Brian Scudamore:
    Well, you couldn’t have beer that you can have the Biebs. Yep, you can have him.

    Clay:
    Okay. My final Canadian question here. How often do you end a sentence with the letter a? because I’m from Minnesota, which we’re kind of like cousins and if I go up there for two weeks in a row.

    Brian Scudamore:
    Sure, yeah, you got the same twang.

    Clay:
    … and I start to, “Oh don’t, you know eh?” And I find myself going, why did I just say that? And I can’t stop. Is it a bad deal up there? Do you say, “eh,” a lot up there? Is it just in Minnesota?

    Brian Scudamore:
    No, no, we say it a ton. I have to think, I think it depends on what I’m drinking, who I’m with, how much I’m drinking. But I will definitely say, “eh,” lot. And it depends who you’re around for sure.

    Clay:
    Don’t you know? Okay. So let’s talk about 1-800-GOT-JUNK. When did you rename that thing?

    Brian Scudamore:
    Almost 10 years into the business. So I came up with this idea. The company name was the Rubbish Boys, but the truck said 783-JUNK, with a big phone number emblazoned on the side. And half the customer base referred to us as the Rubbish Boys. And the other half referred to us as 783-JUNK and many people thought the two were competitors. And they got it wrong because we weren’t clear. So I said, “You know what, let’s as we’re going to expand into the United States and the rest of the country, let’s create one brand.”

    Brian Scudamore:
    And so there was this ad campaign for milk called the got milk campaign and I thought, “That’s not a bad idea. Why don’t we do 1-800-GOT-JUNK.” And so I got ou to try and get the phone number. I came up with the logo, hired design company to make it all fancy and the way it looks today, the same colors and design. And hired a company before I even had the phone number. I reached out to the department of transportation in Idaho who finally was the holder of the phone number. Luck would have it the government owned the number that I wanted so badly.

    Clay:
    Frick.

    Brian Scudamore:
    And I begged them and pleaded and three calls through to the telephone room. I got Michael who says, “You know what, just take the number.” And he sent me the AT&T forms to sign off on and there we go, we got the number and 1-800-GOT-JUNK was born.

    Clay:
    Drake up there in Canada. He’s the Canadian king of rap there. You’re kind of the Canadian king of franchising. And so you know a lot about the industry and there’s a lot of inside nomenclature, and don’t want to get lost in a lot of it. But we have well we have West Carter on the show who is one of the top attorneys on the planet, in my opinion, Wes, so in my opinion legally speaking.

    Wes Carter:
    Thank you, for covering me.

    Clay:
    And you are indisputably, it’s irrefutable, you are one of the top franchise ores on the planet. And so I want to get into this, there’s a thing called the franchise disclosure document. You’re going to hear it a lot in the franchise space as an FDD. And right away you start talking about legal stuff, people, their eyes glaze over and they say, “I don’t want to do it.” But you have to make a franchise disclosure document to sell franchises in the United States. And it has 23 items in that franchise disclosure document. You know where you’re clarifying trademarks, territories, initial fees, litigation, blah, blah, blah. A lot of stuff. It’s a big document.

    Brian Scudamore:
    Of course.

    Clay:
    Why do franchise disclosure documents cost people so much money? People are out there listening saying, “I want to franchise my company.” Why are people paying fifteen thousand twenty thousand thirty thousand dollars to write a franchise disclosure document?

    Brian Scudamore:
    Yeah, it’s a lot of money. I’d say it’s hundreds of thousands because if you want to be in all the different registration States and you want to register with the federal trade commission. It’s just a big, painful, expensive process that I think is necessary because it sets clear expectations. Here’s the good, the bad, and the ugly of the franchise or you’re looking to invest with. Here’s the one that you’re partnering with and they’re a franchise or that they’ve got some blemishes and some wounds. And it’s meant to highlight has there been litigation? Has there been any big problems? What’s their financial situation? And these are things I think people need to know upfront before taking the leap into a franchise business.

    Clay:
    How did you know it was time to franchise? And walk us through the process of franchising 1-800-GOT-JUNK.

    Brian Scudamore:
    Yeah. So, I was always a big fan of Ray Crock’s model with McDonald’s of having people have ownership, have skin in the game. And he created something remarkable across the world in a brand that never existed. He really took the McDonald’s brothers business and made it something that many people owned and thrived with. And I always wanting to build something bigger and better together, and so that ownership model. We could gone the private equity route, we could’ve gone raising capital, do an IPO. I mean the Starbucks model or the subway model. We happen to have chose the subway model, the franchise model. Which I believe in because we’ve got franchise owners who take great pride in their market, in what we’re building together. And I just felt like it was something I wanted to be a part of. And so I started to research it, realized how expensive it was, how little I knew, made a bunch of mistakes trying to franchise, but eventually we started to figure it out and things started to work for us.

    Clay:
    Wes has a question here for you, but before we get to Wes’ is question we’ll always one up my question. I would like to clarify how many 1-800-GOT-JUNK franchises are out there today?

    Brian Scudamore:
    There’s about 150. So in our busiest period in time or our highest volume number of franchises, about 2007, we had 329. Now we still service the same footprint, so while our sales have actually quadrupled since that time, the business has shrunk in a sense in terms of footprint. But that’s made it easier for us and easier for our franchise owners. They own more, they control more, and it gives us fewer franchise partners to have to support, which means we can give them more support to the people we have.

    Wes Carter:
    You talked about how important your franchisees are to you. I mean, do you accept anybody that sends in the right application or do you have a criteria? I mean, how do you pick what’s a good fit or you and the applicant that’s trying to become a franchisee?

    Brian Scudamore:
    Yeah, so of about a hundred people that will apply, we will accept one. So what we do, it’s about an eight week process of us screening people out, weeding people through and saying, “We’ve got someone who’s got the money but they don’t have the attitude. They don’t have the cultural fit. They might not be somebody who we believe in or or has a proven track record of success. They might not be a leader.”

    Brian Scudamore:
    So things we look for, we look for leadership, attainment, the ability to set goals and get them done. Tenacity, to follow through when the going gets tough. And we’re looking for people that want to learn, that want to follow a system. Not someone that’s a pure bred entrepreneur who wants to do everything their way and reinvent the system. This is about a, “How can we do this bigger and better by doing this together?”

    Clay:
    What kind of type is just a disaster of a franchisee? Where you look back and go, “Oh, you know what? That right there.”

    Speaker 4:
    Oh, Billy.

    Clay:
    “I should not have sold a franchise to that kind of person.” And then what’s the best kind of person to have a franchise?

    Brian Scudamore:
    Yeah, so I would say, I don’t think it’s personality type. I mean we definitely take people that are a little more social that want to do something with people. Because we want our franchise partners to pick up the phone and call their neighbors and call people across the country to say, “What are you doing? What’s working?” And a lot of our franchise partners do some pretty cool things together, whether it’s hiked Machu Picchu or they go on these adventures and these trips and they get together with their families. We want that social connectedness.

    Brian Scudamore:
    But I think it’s less about personality and it’s more about their attitude. Are they focused? Are they trying to run this one business versus running a bunch? Are they really putting all their eggs in one basket and really work in this system and making this their entire bet? And so franchise owners, whether they get into 1-800-GOT-JUNK or Shack Shine our newest business, which is windows, gutters, power washing. We want people that are all in. When they try and do a a job and a business, we find that they’re just spread too thin and things fail.

    Clay:
    Speaking of thin, by the way, if people Google search you, you are looking good man. What are you doing? What are you up there in Canada, you going beer free the last few years? What are you doing?

    Brian Scudamore:
    I think it’s the glacier water that’s in our beer. The mountain fed springs. No, not going beer free. Enjoy my beer, as all Canadians do. No thanks. I appreciate you think I look young. I feel young as well.

    Clay:
    You do. You’re looking very young now as you’re turning back the time you look younger than when you started the company. He’s like a time machine kind of a franchiser where I’m kind of worried about you at this point.

    Brian Scudamore:
    Now you’ve got everybody Googling me.

    Clay:
    That’s what you got to do. I just share the eye-candy freely. Now you start a franchise called, WOW 1 DAY PAINTING. I’d like for you to, in whatever order you want to, I want you to talk with us and share this about Shack Shine, You Move Me, WOW 1 DAY PAINTING. You got four different franchises going on now. Walk us through the timeline of how you kind of went from 1-800-JUNK to the next one and the next one because you are on fire.

    Brian Scudamore:
    Yeah. Things are growing. We’ve got one big business. So of our 365 million is approximately what we finished our revenue app for 2018 across all brands, 310 million of that is 1-800-GOT-JUNK. So the three up and comers, the babies in the family if you will I’ll pick one.

    Brian Scudamore:
    WOW 1 DAY PAINTING. I got into that by accident. I was looking for someone to paint my home. I called three companies through referrals. The first two came cigarette smoke smelling people who were late, who just didn’t give me any sense that they were actually going to get the place finished quickly. Kind of like that show Murphy Brown. I thought they were going to move in and live with me for a while, it was going to take forever.

    Clay:
    Right.

    Brian Scudamore:
    But get the third guy comes in and he’s got this shiny van, he’s got an iPad, he’s uniformed, and he says, “Here’s the deal. We’ll get it done in the in in a day. Once you tell us to go ahead, we’re going to need one day to do the job.”

    Brian Scudamore:
    And I said, “What? One day for prep you?”

    Brian Scudamore:
    He goes, “No, no, no. One day for the whole thing. We’re going to paint it and get her done and get out so that you don’t have a disruption here and you can get back to living.” And so I didn’t think he’d be able to do it. I came home at the end of the Workday, 6:30 PM floor to ceiling moldings, trim everything done immaculately.

    Clay:
    Wow.

    Brian Scudamore:
    Yeah, exactly. That’s what I said. I was so wowed I ended up buying the company. And so what this guy did is he said, “We come into your home with enough people, you can paint one room in a day. Everyone knows that maybe you need one or two people depending on the size of the room. Just put the right number of people in the right rooms and you get it done without rushing, no compromise in quality.” And so that is our biggest franchise other than 1-800-GOT-JUNK. We’ve got over 50 franchise owners and not people that get into it because they love painting, but people that want to build and grow an empire in their city. And it’s been super exciting. It’s been fun to watch it grow.

    Brian Scudamore:
    And I had a lot of naysayers that said, “You can’t paint a home in a day.” Especially some friends of mine that were in the painting business that I went to as experts. They said, “You’re freaking nuts. This can’t be done.” One of the guys that told me I was freaking nuts is now running that company, which is fun.

    Clay:
    Every day you just walk up to him and you say, “You’re doing a good job. In your face.”

    Brian Scudamore:
    Yeah, exactly.

    Clay:
    Now you wrote a book called WTF, Willing to Fail. How failure can be your key to success. Brian, my friend, what inspired you to write this book? WTF, my man?

    Brian Scudamore:
    WTF. Why did I write a book? I have a hard enough time reading books, let alone getting out there and writing. I’m so dis-focused and ADD at times that it can be a challenge. But you know what, I love writing. I love storytelling. And Roy Williams, who’s the wizard of ads as we call him, he’s the guy that does all our radio creative across the country and Roy kept pestering me, “Write a book. Write a book, Brian. You got to write.”

    Brian Scudamore:
    And I was like, “You know Roy, I don’t need to write a book. My ego doesn’t need it. I’m not one of those entrepreneurs.”

    Brian Scudamore:
    He said, “No, no, you don’t get it. It’s not about you. It’s about storytelling to others because your stories are inspiring. What you guys have built together, you need to tell the world.”

    Brian Scudamore:
    So I said, “Okay, fine.”

    Brian Scudamore:
    He said, “I’ll make it easy.” And we ended up storytelling recording them all and starting to put them together in a book. And love the book we wrote because it has inspired. I had a video testimonial from a nine year old the other day. I also had a testimonial from an 89 year old. So from nine to 89 that’s the range we’re working in right now and we seem to be inspiring people and encouraging people to go down the road less traveled of entrepreneurship either with us or without us. But anything we can do to help inspire, we feel it’s worth it.

    Clay:
    If somebody is going to get this book today, they’re going to go out there and buy WTF. Do you have a few highlights in the book or maybe a thing where you go, “Hey, you’re going to love this story”? is there a particular story they’re going to find in the book that is hot?

    Brian Scudamore:
    Yeah, I mean there’s stories about how we created the painted picture, our vision for the future of how we were going to get on Oprah, how we were going to build the FedEx of junk removal and against all odds we did it. There’s stories of, we already talked about firing the entire team and what that was like and what that taught me. The entire book is ups and downs of these WTF moments where I am actually failing, but I learned from that failure. People say, “What would you change if you could change one thing?”

    Brian Scudamore:
    Are you kidding me? Nothing. I needed to learn those lessons to get to where we are today. And so I don’t know if there’s one thing that stands out because I hear such different things from different people. But one of my quotes at the end is, “There’s a real big difference between making a living and making a life.” And I think the book is a life strategy book that teaches people not just about business, but shares wisdom from all of us who’ve been a part of creating 1-800-GOT-JUNK at O2E brands of how to make a great life. And I think North Americans often have it wrong and they focus so much on the living part and the things and collections. And it’s like, you know what? Life’s too short to not have fun and to not be making a difference in this world. Let’s make meaning, not just money.

    Clay:
    Now you are a guy who you’re very passionate about what you do. You can sense it, you can feel it. It’s worth Googling your name there. I mean you have a lot of passion for what you do. And I think a lot of entrepreneurs have a lot of passion for what they do, but they never can sit down and make all the detailed systems and checklists needed to franchise. So it’s not really franchisable right, because it’s just a vague idea. How do you know when something is able to be franchised? What level of detail do you need to have? What kind of systems, what kind of processes and checklists and things do you need to have in place before you really should look to franchise your business?

    Brian Scudamore:
    I think if a business can look, act and feel the same from city to city, that’s the key. If your business needs an artist, if your business needs somebody who really has a creative vent who can do things differently, it’s hard to replicate that. To me, a franchise organization is a recipe. You’re creating a recipe that if people follow that recipe, they’re going to be successful. They have to do all the same ingredients and follow the process, the recipe the same way. But if they do that they will be successful.

    Brian Scudamore:
    So think McDonald’s one of the original franchises, those little hamburgers and french fries and the way they look and feel and everything’s consistent in Tulsa versus Los Angeles, it doesn’t matter where you go. I think looking at the business, it doesn’t have to be food, it doesn’t have to be home service. It has to be something though that can be consistently replicated in each market.

    Wes Carter:
    Brian, this is Wes. You talked about how important is to be happy, which I can’t agree with more. And at least in my experience, my happiness level at work has a lot to do with who I surround myself with. And you’ve had that experience of having to clean house and listeners that go read your book are going to hear other great stories about hiring the wrong CEO and other things. I’m curious, you’re sitting there as a one man band, what advice you would give to our listeners? How do they pick the right employees? The people that they’re going to bring underneath them.

    Clay:
    Ooh, that’s good.

    Wes Carter:
    Are there characteristics or certain traits you look for to pick the right, not your franchise but the team that you’re going to bring underneath you?

    Brian Scudamore:
    Yeah, so it’s a great question. So what I’d sort of throw back, is I’d say to you, and you don’t necessarily need to answer this, but you’ll get the question is, how do you find friends? How do you recruit friends? I’m guessing you don’t have a checklist and go, “Oh, this guy loves Canadian beer and he seems funny and this and this and that.” You find friends because you just kind of know. You’ve got a good gut feel, you got a sense of, “This is a good person, this person’s interesting, interested.” You’ve got something in common.

    Brian Scudamore:
    I think that the same thing applies to how you find employees, how you find people to be on your team. All too often people get out there and they look at the skill first. I believe, look at cultural fit first, look at skill second. “Hire on attitude, train on skill,” is what we say. Now, if you’re looking for a CFO, you’ve got to find a financial person and they have to have all the credentials. But still I believe you then look at the cultural fit before you get your accounting and auditing firm to have a look at the person’s skillset.

    Brian Scudamore:
    So the right people for me and my company might be different than the right people for any other person that’s listening in their company because we all have different friends. We all have different things we look for. But it’s finding people you want to spend time with, that you can care about, that you can help cheer lead and encourage them to hit their dreams and goals. And that’s what makes it all work. And then once you find the wrong people, if you’ve made a mistake and you’ve compromised, get those people out help them free their future up for a better place for them. And you’ve got a spot filled, or vacant in your company, that’s for the the right person who can come in.

    Clay:
    We have three final questions for you now. Wes has one and I have two here for you. So this is one of my final two questions I’ll ask you here. Your company, when you sell somebody a franchise on a very practical level, right? And they’re a great fit. They’re a new franchisee, they’re excited, the things are good and there are really good franchisee. But then they ask you, “Is there any way that I can do this? Can I try this instead? Can I change the logo? Can I change the website? Can we change the print piece?” How do you handle that when a franchisee asks those initial questions about, “Can I pivot?” They’re trying to go like rogue entrepreneur. They’re not trying to be an nefarious, difficult person, but they’re just kind of seeing the boundaries. How do you handle that kind of thing?

    Brian Scudamore:
    Our advice is take the first year to follow our systems and we try and be very upfront in the process with them and doing that so that they don’t come back and say, “Oh no, no, I want to try this. And you didn’t tell me that I couldn’t.” We want them to run with our systems for the first year. The systems weren’t created by Brian Scudamore, they weren’t created by the Junction. They created by all of us, everybody apart of the O2E brands family and they work. And so we’ll often get franchise partners coming us late in the game a couple of years into the business and they’re like, “Aw man, I should have followed the systems more closely because you’re right, they do work.”

    Brian Scudamore:
    Now, if someone wants to try something new and wants to be innovative, we like doing experiments. We want to pilot different things and try. One of our franchise partners came to us and they said, “I want to stay up until midnight.”

    Brian Scudamore:
    We’re like, “Well, that sounds crazy.” But they wanted to test it. We then ran a national radio set of ads and it’s been the most impactful radio programming we’ve done. Staying open until midnight has shown we’re committed, we’re all in and people had to operationalize it. But you know what, it was a smart thing to do all because Alan in Baltimore decided to be the one to step up and say, “You know what? I’m going to try something new. I think we should pilot it.” And it worked. Not all experiments do work, but that’s what you got to do is you’ve got to try new things and take some risks.

    Wes Carter:
    So if you’ve got an employee or a franchisee or just a friend that they’re wanting to learn more about business or leadership, do you have a go-to book? Whether it’s autobiography or a business book that you’re like, “Hey, go read this. You can learn a lot about business leadership running your company.” Do you have a favorite book that you suggest for people?

    Brian Scudamore:
    Yeah, so for two different sort of questions, I think in there. One is on leadership and one is on running your business. On the leadership side, huge fan of Jim Collins, good to Great. It’s a an oldie but a goodie. And man, that book is just unbelievable. I think scientifically data-driven, here’s how to build the right leadership style.

    Brian Scudamore:
    On the running of business side, on building systems and processes, whether you want to franchise or just grow and scale a business. The E Myth Revisited by Michael Gerber, a Michael Gerber’s become a great friend and I just love the impact that that book had on our business.

    Clay:
    So E Myth by Michael Gerber and Jim Collins, Good to Great. And I can tell you this, I believe Jim Collins and I, we’ve begun a special relationship. It’s really one sided right now. Like I invite him on the show and I don’t hear a lot back, but what I feel-

    Wes Carter:
    Unrequited love.

    Clay:
    I mean, sometimes people want what they can’t have and I think he’s making me want it. He’s making me want it.

    Wes Carter:
    He’s playing hard to get.

    Clay:
    We had Daniel Pink on the show. We’ve got John Maxwell. We have you on the show. So maybe if you can just, Brian, maybe you can throw back a Canadian beer for me tonight and just pour out some liquor for my homie here, Jim Collins and see if you can get him on our show. That’s my only request there this year. So I’ve got a final question here for you.

    Brian Scudamore:
    Well, you know what you’re doing. You’re doing what I do with the vision, the painted pictures, just thrown it out to the universe. And you never know someone might hear this podcast who knows Jim Collins, who is connected with them and these things have a magical way of happening and the more that we manifest it and talk about it. So good for you.

    Clay:
    Here’s one thing I’m working on too, it’s a subtle move I’m trying here. Brian. A lot of times I’ll say, “Jim Collins, if you’re listening right now,and your name is Jim Collins. Call me, pick up the phone, Jim Collins.” It’s kind of a subtle move. It’s subtle, it’s very classy.

    Brian Scudamore:
    That is so good. That is so good.

    Clay:
    All right.

    Brian Scudamore:
    I love your style.

    Clay:
    I want to ask you this. I want to ask you this now, the first four hours of your day. Now, obviously your schedule is different now, but when you were starting the 1-800-GOT-JUNK, when when you fired the guys, the Rubbish Boys, you fired the band. You restructured and you said, “Okay, we’re going to franchise this baby.” What did your schedule look like during the first four hours of your day and what time did you wake up?

    Brian Scudamore:
    So back in that day, I probably would have woken up at seven o’clock, get into the office and just deal with fires, letting people get out in the trucks and scheduling, dispatch, dealing with customer issues and dealing with happy customers as well. But just trying to manage it all, a volume, a fire hose of things going on. I was probably 40 pounds heavier, was stressed out, was not feeling like I was in necessarily a great place.

    Brian Scudamore:
    If I look at today, I get up at 5:55 AM. I know it’s very precise and strange, but it’s just my time to get up. An hour before my kids, an hour before my world starts to get busy and I focus on myself. So my best days, if I look at today, for example, 5:55 grabbed a cup of coffee and hopped on the bike and worked out hard and felt great afterwards.

    Brian Scudamore:
    I mean, when my kids were up and my family was up this morning, they’re like, “What are you smoking? What are you drinking? Why are you still happy?” My best days are starting with exercise and starting with an intention. “What am I going to do today to help change our world? What am I going to do to drive us closer to our dreams?” And it’s fun when I set an intention and I’m clear about it, awesome day. When I forget to set it or I get too busy, things just kind of go all over the place and don’t go as planned because there is no plan.

    Clay:
    So you would advise people to get on a bike, be proactive about your day. Maybe don’t start your day by smoking and drinking.

    Brian Scudamore:
    No smoking and drinking. That was my family wondering what I was smoking, because I was so happy.

    Clay:
    Okay, there’s so many out there. We have listeners, “I’m going to wake up every day and smoke and drink then if that’s what I have to do.” Okay. Just want to clarify that for the literal listener out there. Now, hey, I appreciate you so much for being on the show. I appreciate you have so much for writing this book, WTF and for building these franchise. Because the franchise really is, you’re creating an opportunity for somebody to create time freedom and financial freedom. You’re creating opportunities for people. Thank you for doing that yet again by being on today’s show. Do you have a one big ask of our listeners? Anything you want them to do today as a result of listening to today’s show?

    Brian Scudamore:
    I’ve got no ask. I’m about giving back at this point and if there’s something I can do to help anyone there, don’t hesitate to reach out. Whatever your social poison is, you can Instagram me @brianscudamore. Send me a direct message and let me know how I can help and I’ll always do my best. But yeah, happy to help. I love entrepreneurship. I love watching people grow. I love optimism in this world and we need more of it. So glad you had me on the show, Clay, and it was really fun chatting with both of you. And thanks for keeping the legal questions light, which was also fun. But yeah, no, you guys run a great show.

    Clay:
    Hey, well hope you have a great day. And if you’re looking for a ton of Bryan Adams, if you watched the movie Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron, it’s all sang by Bryan Adams, I believe. So hopefully, that works for you. But how have an awesome Canadian day, my friend.

    Brian Scudamore:
    Thank you very much. Thanks again to both of you. I appreciate it.

    Clay:
    All right, take care.

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