The Big Signs You’re In Toxic Relationships & How To Set Boundaries w/ Nedra Tawwab Glover EP 1400

New book from NYT bestselling author Lewis Howes is now available!


Rob Dyrdek, Sara Blakely, Naveen Jain, Lisa Messenger & Grant Cardone

Business Building Secrets from the Masters

There's something different about how the most successful business people think and act.

We’ve had some incredible masters of business on the show over the years.

For this next mashup episode, I selected 5 clips from some of the most impactful conversations I’ve had with these masters.

I’ve learned so much about how to take my business to the next level by learning from these entrepreneurs.

Each of them has a unique business and personality (and strengths), but each has achieved extraordinary success by following certain key patterns.

Interested to know what they are?

"Even the sky is not the limit." - Naveen Jain  

You’ll hear from Rob Dyrdek, the mogul of skateboard products, MTV, and funding startups. You’ll then hear from Sara Blakely, the founder of Spanx and the youngest female self-made billionaire in the US.

Then you’ll hear from Naveen Jain, the founder of multiple wildly successful tech companies, including ones that are making private space travel a reality – and curing disease. Next is Lisa Messenger, the Australian multi-media entrepreneur who turned out an incredibly successful magazine when nothing supported her idea.

And finally, we end on a note from Grant Cardone, the money master entrepreneur himself, who I recently spoke at his massive 9K person event in Vegas.

This is a power-packed episode, so get ready to take notes and take your business to the next level after listening to Episode 647.

"My vision is unwavering." - Lisa Messenger  

Some Questions I Ask:

In this episode, you will learn:

  • How to systemize your life to scale your impact (5:37)
  • The way to get through massive obstacles in the start up phase (10:10)
  • How to attract the very best talent in the world to your company (15:05)
  • Why it’s important to surrender to the process of building your business (20:19)
  • How to think like a billionaire versus a millionaire (25:00)
  • Plus much more…

Show Notes:

Connect with
Rob Dyrdek, Sara Blakely, Naveen Jain, Lisa Messenger & Grant Cardone

Transcript of this Episode

Lewis Howes:              This is episode number 647, with The Business Masters.

Welcome to The School of Greatness. My name is Lewis Howes, former pro-athlete turned lifestyle entrepreneur and each week we bring you an inspiring person or message to help you discover how to unlock your inner greatness. Thanks for spending some time with me today. Now, let the class begin.

T.S. Elliot said, only those who risk going too far, can possibly find out how far one can go.”

Welcome to another special edition of The School of Greatness Podcast. I decided to bring on some of the most inspiring business masters that I’ve had on this podcast, people like Rob Dyrdek, Sara Blakely, the billionaire from Spanx. We’ve got Naveen Jain, Lisa Messenger and Grant Cardone. Some individuals who have taken their passion, their fuel, their energy into an idea and fused their light into it and scaled a business in the process.

And there’s a common theme that you’re going to be seeing and hearing throughout this entire episode. But I want to make sure you share this with your friends. Tag me as well, @LewisHowes on social media and let me know what you think.

If you’re just coming here for the first time, we’ve had over 645 incredible, mind-blowing episodes on this podcast, yet so many people have missed previous episodes and these powerful golden nuggets, so we decided to pull out some of the most unique insights on building and scaling a business and put it all in one episode.

The previous mash-ups we’ve been doing on Spirituality, the Wellness Masters, the Relationship Masters, have been blowing up and people are loving them. So, we wanted to do one on scaling and building a business. And even if you don’t have a business right now, these principles are still very valuable for your own life, or for your own career, or for your relationships. So make sure to take these in.

Whether you have a career, you’re a new entrepreneur, you’re building your business, you’re growing your business, it’s all powerful stuff.

And before we get into the show, guys, I want to tell you about The Summit of Greatness. Now, this is our annual event, it’s an experience, where we cultivate and bring in some of the most inspiring speakers from around the world and put together this powerful community of conscious achievers.

People say it’s unlike any event they’ve ever been to. We just announced the first four speakers and the early bird discount goes away in the next three days. Make sure to sign up right now at, get your tickets, get tickets for your friends, because the price is going up in a few days and I want you to get huge savings on those early bird discounted tickets.

Check out who our speaker line-up is, so far. We’ll be announcing more massive names over the coming weeks, but get your tickets right now at

And I want to give a shout out to the Fan of the Week! This is from Lauren Saddler, who said, “Lewis’ podcast is my go-to for personal development in various areas. I listen during my commute daily and the interviews and insights provided keeps me informed and focussed throughout the day. I always have something to think about and reflect on to better myself, and become great.”

So, Lauren Saddler, thank you for your review, you are the Fan of the Week! And if you guys want a chance to be shouted out on the podcast, go ahead and leave a review over on the podcast app or over on iTunes. We’ve got over 3,000 plus five star reviews. So, go leave your review, let us know what you think and get your chance to be shouted out.

I want to give a thank you to our sponsor, Blinkist. Now, if you’re like me, I like all the information I can to become better in my life. I’m constantly seeking and learning what I can do to improve and how I can optimise my life. But, there are so many incredible books out there and just not enough time.

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Alright, guys, let me know what your most insightful point from this episode is, who you enjoyed the most. Again, Rob Dyrdek, Sara Blakely, Naveen Jain, Lisa Messenger and Grant Cardone. So, without further ado, let’s dive into The Business Masters.

* * *

Rob Dyrdek:                 I live a completely systematic life. I think you know it well, it’s the habits, right? And now imagine if your habit level goes even further, where now you only pick projects and build projects where your part of it is only where you find energy. So, now…

Lewis Howes:               It doesn’t take your energy.

Rob Dyrdek:                 Right, and then, now connect that to having a complete life plan and total purpose that’s scalable. Right, so now every aspect of your life has purpose and meaning. So your faith in your big ideas is always there, because you believe in your plan. And you’re not getting outside your comfort zone, because you’ve built your entire system around making sure you stay there. It’s almost impossible to drift out of it.

Now, I have intangibles, like incredible love. I have the love of my life and the person that I was absolutely meant to live on this Earth with forever, create a family and build forever, and that’s something that we all hope and dream for, but actually achieving it is the greatest of great unknowns in actually getting. And when you are already built around creating a systematic life plan on top of optimising that and building it to evolve as you grow.

But now, when you’re building that forever plan, with someone that you are fully aligned with, in that purpose together, and now your entire universe is built around the both of you, it’s something to be grateful for at an extremely fundamental level. You know what I mean?

Because not many people I know could articulate it like that, or actually live it and understand what it actually feels like. Because it’s essentially relationships.

Lewis Howes:               What does it feel like?

Rob Dyrdek:                 It’s peace. You know what I mean? And you get up each day, it doesn’t matter how chaotic things are, you look at it half full, you just deal with it as it goes. And you’ve built your world in a way that nothing, the stakes aren’t so high in anything that you’re doing. At the end of the day, your family and your core relationship that’s at the centre of it all, is the most important, right? So your balance naturally occurs.

A lot of really driven people have to fight to find balance, right? Versus building an entire balanced system, so that you live in balance, you never have to search for it, you actually live in it. Part of living in that balance is making sure that you live in the energy of everything, and get up every day and look at it half full because you just look at, you’re happy.

And it’s a difficult thing to achieve. It took me three years, I would say. Meeting Tony Robbins was a huge part of it.

Lewis Howes:               When did you meet him?

Rob Dyrdek:                 Two years ago. I had, basically three years ago, I had just finally had enough of what I was doing.

Lewis Howes:               Which was?

Rob Dyrdek:                 Everything. And if you…

Lewis Howes:               A little bit of everything.

Rob Dyrdek:                 And if you choose, because when you literally can do anything, and you choose to do it all, you end up standing for nothing. And I was always doing all these things, thinking one of them was going to be the answer, and I finally stopped and said, “No. Let’s decide what it’s all for, and what you actually want to do forever, and begin to build that. And transition into the rest of your life and a plan that is scalable to who you are.”

So, it’s put you in what you love to do the most, and that gives you that same sort of creative freedom to have a ton of variety so you can still do a ton of different things, but not be burdened by any of them is ultimately what it is.

And then, what can you master? What do you want to be a master of? You have to decide what your mastery is, so that you can spend the rest of your life getting better and better and better and better, right?

* * *

Sara Blakely:                That was the really hard part. I heard the word, ‘no’, for two years. All the manufacturers, nobody thought it was a good idea. And also, when you’re just yourself, trying to break into an industry, like you mentioned, the manufacturers, it’s not really in their best interests to slow down machines or try to give a girl with a couple of grand a chance.

Lewis Howes:               Unless you’re going to give them a bunch of money for a big order, or something, it’s like, what’s the point? Wow.

Sara Blakely:                Right, so that was the hard part. And then, once I had it, I called Nieman Marcus and that was the first account I called on.

Lewis Howes:               Did you get it?

Sara Blakely:                Yes!

Lewis Howes:               Well, you were great at sales, so you could sell it.

Sara Blakely:                Wll, listen, I was so excited, it was my moment. I flew to Dallas and said, “If you give me ten minutes of your time, I’ll come and meet with you.”

Lewis Howes:               Was this the buyer?

Sara Blakely:                Yes, the buyer. I first called the Atlanta store. They were like, “Girl, we can’t help you, we have a buying office.” I’m like, “Well, where is that? Give me the number.” And I went in, and halfway through my pitch I could tell I was losing her, so I said, “You know what? Will you please come to the bathroom with me?”

And she was so buttoned up, I mean, Nieman Marcus, like, her pen matched her belt that matched her shoes. She was, like, “What?”

Lewis Howes:               Like, “What do I need to go to the bathroom for?”

Sara Blakely:                I was like, “Just follow me the bathroom, I want to show you my own panty line.” And I went in the stall with Spanks in my pants and without it in my pants and she was, like, “Oh, I totally get it! It’s awesome! And I’m going to put it in seven stores.”

Lewis Howes:               Wow!

Sara Blakely:                Yeah.

Lewis Howes:               Just like that.

Sara Blakely:                Just like that. It was so unbelievable. I was so nervous. And then of course I had to call Sam. I’m like, “Sam,” in the rental car on the way back to the airport, I called the owner of the manufacturing plant, I’m like, “Sam, Sam! It’s Sara, I need more! I just landed Nieman Marcus!”

And he’s, like, “What?” He was in shock. He goes, “Sara, I have been giving these away as birthday presents for years.” And I’m like, “No, Nieman Marcus just bought it, and I need more.” And he patched me through to Ted, because he goes, “Okay, you need to talk to Ted.”

So, Ted comes back in, he’s on the phone, and, I go, “Ted, I need more. I just landed Nieman Marcus.” And he goes, “Well, that’s great, but what are you going to do about the crotches?”

Lewis Howes:               Crotches?

Sara Blakely:                Yeah! Exactly! That’s what I said, I go, “What? Don’t they come with crotches, we’ve been making them with crotches.” He goes, “Well, yeah, but we only got one crotch machine and it’s being used by somebody else.”

Lewis Howes:               No way! So what did you do then?

Sara Blakely:                So, I had just landed Nieman Marcus and I have no crotches.

Lewis Howes:               Oh, my gosh! Is there a hole in your crotches?

Sara Blakely:                I don’t know where to go for a crotch. I mean, where do you go? I actually looked in the yellow pages.

Lewis Howes:               Crotch-making machines?

Sara Blakely:                I just looked up ‘crotch’.

Lewis Howes:               Crotch machine? I don’t even know how to spell ‘crotch’.

Sara Blakely:                Okay, listen, this is what I learned. I’m going to teach you something. So, I didn’t know this…

What’s the Yellow Pages again? No, I’m just kidding!

Sara Blakely:                Oh my gosh! It’s big book, it’s yellow, it’s what we use to look things up… Hilarious! Where was I? Oh, yeah, I was just teaching you … What’s Instagram? I just joined it, seven days ago. So, where was.. Oh, crotch.

Lewis Howes:               Yes, crotch machine, you looked it up.

Sara Blakely:                So, anyway, in the yellow pages it’s not under crotch, so I learned there’s a fancy word for crotch: gusset.

Lewis Howes:               Gusset? What?

Sara Blakely:                Yes, gusset.

Lewis Howes:               Never even heard that word.

Sara Blakely:                So, I start calling gusset companies. They would Fedex me crotchets from all over. My roommate would come home and be, like, “You got another crotchet in the mail.”

And then I ended up finding a man by the name of Jean Beaubois that worked for a crotch company just twenty minutes north of where I lived in Atlanta, and he saved the day. They made the crotches and I could deliver Nieman Marcus.

Lewis Howes:               So you had the leggings, they made the crotches and then you sewed them together? Is that how it works?

Sara Blakely:                Yes, apparently, yes.

Lewis Howes:               Gotcha, okay. So you had to know… How many did you print the first time?

Sara Blakely:                Three thousand.

Lewis Howes:               Three thousand?

Sara Blakely:                Three thousand pair of the first Spanx.

Lewis Howes:               One SKU, right?

Sara Blakely:                Yes. One SKU, $20, one SKU.

Lewis Howes:               Three sizes?

Sara Blakely:                Like, four. Four sizes, yeah.

Lewis Howes:               Three thousand of them?

Sara Blakely:                Yes. That’s what Nieman’s ordered. And then they sent them to the seven stores. I had no packing and shipping department, so the semi trucks were pulling up to my apartment in Atlanta, and I was shipping them myself to Nieman’s.

And then I called every friend I had in those seven cities, like, people I hadn’t talked to in twenty years.

Lewis Howes:               Like, “Hey, go buy a few of these. Take your girlfriends there.”

Sara Blakely:                “Hi, Christina, remember me? I used to sit next to you all the time in grade school. Please will you go buy this product called ‘Spanx’,” I literally called them, and I said, “I’ll mail you a check.”

So, I paid all my friends and friends of friends to go buy the product.

Lewis Howes:               That’s brilliant, actually. To get some movement.

Sara Blakely:                Yeah, I said, “Go in,” I gave them a whole script, I said, “Go in, and say, ‘I’ve been looking for this all my life! I can’t believe it’s here!” and create all this excitement, and then, of course, a week later I talk to the Nieman’s buyer and she’s like, “Sara, we are blowing out!” I’m like, “You don’t say!” Meanwhile I was buying them all.

Lewis Howes:               That’s brilliant! Wow!

Sara Blakely:                Yeah, you have to. You have to ensure your own success. So then, once I started running out of money, Oprah called and put it on as her favourite product of the year.

* * *

Naveen Jain:                 The first thing, really, you have to do is, believe, in yourself, that it can be done. and people have to believe that, with or without them, it’s going to get done.

Lewis Howes:               It’s happening.

Naveen Jain:                 It’s happening. This train is leaving the station. So I, when I started the first time on the Moon Express, I said, “People, every time in your life you have had a chance to watch the history being made. How often in your lifetime you get a chance to make history? Come join me and we can make the history together, or you can watch on the sideline, while we make the history and you watch.” Right?

Lewis Howes:               Right. No one wants to miss out.

Naveen Jain:                 Nobody wants to miss that out. And another thing that I found really interesting is, the bigger and the crazier the idea, the easier it is to execute. And here is the thing.

So, for example, if I tell someone, “I’m going to build an iPhone App that’s going to be able to help you find a roommate,” people are going to say, “Good idea, great idea, go do it, have fun with it.” When I tell them, “I’m going to start something that is going to make illness as an option,’” you start to get the best and the brightest from around the world.

Because now, you have created a big magnet. It attracts the people who want to make this their legacy. They want to work on the hard problem. They want to solve the problem that changes the way people live their lives.

And when I did that, I was telling you, the head of the IBM Watson Research called and said, “I can build the AI for you, I’ve been doing it for twenty years. Just get me the detail from inside the body and I can get the AI for you.”

Dr Messier, PhD in Microbiology MD, she’s working for Craig Venter, who was on the cover of Time Magazine with the title, ‘The Man Who Played God’ making the people live forever. She calls me and said, “What’s the point in living longer if people are going to be sick? I love your vision! I’m going to quit my job and join you.” Right?

Dr Yusovic found us, because he said, “I have the technology that looks inside your body. We did it for the National Defence work, I think we can get that for you.” Right? The point was, that single goal, of what is possible, allowed me to bring these people together.

And when you have these people together, what happens? Every single venture capital wants to be investing in that, because you have this amazing team.

Lewis Howes:               All-stars, yeah.

Naveen Jain:                 All-star team with a vision that could change the way people live their life. What if I’m right? This is not a 10 billion dollar company, it’s not a 100 billion dollar company, even the sky is not the limit!

Lewis Howes:               The moon’s not the limit, yeah.

Naveen Jain:                 The moon is not the limit. The galaxy is not the limit! Even the universe is not the limit, right? Because it can be anything, if it changes the way people live their lives, but the best thing is, you did something that changed the lives of billions of people around the world. And that is the thing that people want to be.

Nobody joins the company saying, “Oh, I will make a lot of money.” People do it because they say, “I will have serious impact.” And I remind people, unlike the olden days, people did good, or people did well. That means, people started non-profit or people started for profit. I really think the world has changed, where people like you, Lewis, are changing the way people live.

They’re saying, “You can be great, but you don’t have to be mean. You can build amazing great companies, not on the backs of people.” And I really believe, if you want to do the small good in the world, you create a non-profit. If you want to do a large good in the world, you create for profit. Because profit is the engine that drives you to scale.

So, never, ever think that what you are doing, if it makes money, somehow you are letting yourself down. You say, “If I’m ever going to be doing great stuff in the world, it needs to have an engine for profitability.”

Lewis Howes:               Yeah, resources, then you can make more.

* * *

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* * *

Lisa Messenger:           And if you would say to me, “Where are you going to be in five years?” and I’m like, “I don’t know where I’m going to be in five days.” Now, that’s not to be facetious or complacent, but what I mean by that is, I think so many people get attached to a specific outcome or they don’t surrender to the process.

They have, ‘this is what it’s going to look like,’ and they might write a business plan that’s a 100 pages and it sucks up all their time, energy, money, and everything else and then they’re destined for huge failure if indeed, at the end of it all, there’s no market.

And so, what I say is, what I stand for, my vision, is unwavering, and it is absolutely 100% resolute until the day I die, and that is, now, to be an entrepreneur for entrepreneurs, living my life out loud and showing that anything’s possible. And with the collective platform, it’s all about showcasing inspirational brands and extraordinary individuals and empowering people to live their best life.

So, that would never change. What I really talk to people a lot about is, the platform now it’s completely irrelevant. It doesn’t matter now whether we’re delivering a print magazine, if I’m doing podcasts with you, if I’m doing a speaking gig, if I’m writing a book.

Lewis Howes:               Books, digital, yeah.

Lisa Messenger:           Yeah. Social media, we do a lot of events and that kind of thing. And when I looked at, and I mean, for listeners, don’t think about magazine land, but think about how this applies to you, but I looked at the traditional magazine model, and luckily, doing books, I’d never had any advertising dollars in my life.

So, while traditional magazines were reliant on ad dollars, I was, like, “Ad dollars are just a bonus for me.” So, from the very start, I thought very differently, and I just had no expectation about ad dollars, so I came at it from very different angle.

Lewis Howes:               With most people that’s about 90% of the income, right?

Lisa Messenger:           A hundred percent! And so, like, we sell a page in the magazine for $8,000 but I thought, and you know, a lot of the time to have to discount to $5,000 or whatever, and the print magazine in Australia alone costs me $350,000 an issue, so, each month, to put it out. So I was, like, “Well, if we’re selling individual ad pages at five to eight grand a page, it’s going to take me a long time!”

And, as you said, when you’re an unknown, why are the Chanels and the Nikes and all the big brands going to want to even come near us. So, I thought about it from a very different perspective to start with and I went instead to big brands, like big banks and people, and I said, “I want you to give me $50,000 a month,” so it’s kind of like sow, kind of like, into it.

But then I said, “But for that, you can have 5,000 copies of the magazine that you can use as premiums, incentives, gifts, rewards. Get them out to your community.”

Lewis Howes:               So you were pre-selling?

Lisa Messenger:           Pre-sell! I pre-sell everything! I never ever do anything until I pre-sell.

Lewis Howes:               Amazing! That’s what I preach all the time for entrepreneurs. When you want to create an online course, which I’ve done many of them, I always say, “Do a webinar, sell it first, and then if people buy it, then you give it to them in the next couple of weeks,” but never spend three to six months developing something unless you know people are going to buy it.

Lisa Messenger:           Yeah! And that, oh! We sound like we’re from the same gene pool!

Lewis Howes:               We’re from different parts of the world, but the same mindset! I love it!

Lisa Messenger:           I love it! Yeah. So, I actually talk about this in my first book, ‘Daring and Disruptive’, but I actually probably knocked on $80 and I’m from the Lisa Messenger School of Fail Fast, that I was kind of like, not failing fast, but also, when you know you’re onto a good idea, I just really believed in the magazine so much. And finally I went to Australia’s largest bank and they had a campaign at the time, called, ‘CAN’.

It’s all about, ‘you can’. So I thought, “Well, they ‘can’t’ possibly say they can’t,” and that was my irrational logic, and I met with the chief marketing officer after stalking him for about three months, and I said to him, “This is my vision,” and everything.

And, luckily, he was still a big advocate for print and also for entrepreneurs, and so he said, “How much do you need?” So, that first deal, I had a couple of indicative pages of what I thought the magazine would look like. And it has [unintelligible] many times since then, but I just said, “Look, I need 200 grand,” and it was 50 grand initially for the first four issues, which just gave me a bit of financial help.

But also, what it was, was that someone outside of me, believed in me, and I was suddenly accountable to someone else. And I felt like I really needed to deliver and so that’s how it kind of all started.

* * *

Grant Cardone:            I listened to my rich uncle – he was a millionaire uncle – my millionaire uncle had too much of an influence for too long over my life. I should have been watching what the billionaires do. They don’t operate like millionaires.

Lewis Howes:               How do they operate differently?

Grant Cardone:            They throw down, totally different. The think is completely different. They don’t worry about quarters. The millionaire’s worried about quarters. He’s a miser, they’re misers. The kind of people worth four or five million dollars are total misers. Total, degraded, they’re as bad off as the freaking guy on the street corner.

Won’t give anybody a thing, won’t share anything, looks for every short cut, every sale. I know a guy that’s a car dealer. He must own 25 car dealerships, and probably makes, I don’t know, four, five hundred – he’s got to be worth a billion dollars. He goes twice a year and gets one of his employees to get a new Macy’s card, so he can get an extra 15% off.

Freaking complete insanity. He’s probably a billionaire on paper, but not a billionaire in his heart. Because the real players, the real guys, they’ll go out and buy a jet. That’s why I bought a jet. My millionaire uncle would never buy a jet, that’s a bad investment. But the billionaires, they all own them. Why?

Because they value time more than money. They want to buy time.

Lewis Howes:               Because it doesn’t make sense financially for you. You’re losing money on the jet.

Grant Cardone:            Yeah, totally. All jets go to zero. So, when you buy a jet for 60 million, you know that jet’s going to zero. One day it’s going to be in some salvage joint somewhere, being taken apart for parts. So, all jets go to zero, so you know when you’re buying it, it’s going down to zero. It’s not going to be worth more money.

Lewis Howes:               But the things it brings you…

Grant Cardone:            Dude, it buys you time. A jet is not like a boat, by the way, a jet can get you to business. People go to boats. Jets go to people. And so, I can just tell you, we bought that jet two years ago, I paid for it the first year.

Lewis Howes:               From the deals you got, the time you saved, yeah.

Grant Cardone:            It got me to new places, yeah. And it got me a better quality of life, because now my kids are with me, hanging out.

Lewis Howes:               Peace of mind as well. Yeah.

Grant Cardone:            So, big failures. I did business with a guy when I was forty-five years old that I shouldn’t have done business with. That was a huge mistake and a big lesson I got from that, though, was, I know what’s true. I know when I see the indicators on a dude, I don’t need anybody to tell me he’s alright or not alright, I know what I know.

Lewis Howes:               Man! Powerful stuff guys, I hope you enjoyed this one, again, Business Building Secrets From The Masters. Let me know what you enjoyed the most about this. Take a screenshot, tag me on Instagram or Twitter; and you can get the full show notes there, with all the people we had in this episode, so, again, let me know what you think.

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You know what time it is: It’s time to go out there and do something great!

Music Credits:

Music Credit: Prismatic by Zythian

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