KL012: Lifestyle Entrepreneurs

//KL012: Lifestyle Entrepreneurs

KL012: Lifestyle Entrepreneurs

Connie Pheiff
CEO, Pheiff Group, Podcast Producer and Host
Lifestyle Entrepreneurs

In this episode we discuss what it means to be a Lifestyle Entrepreneur and why it might be interesting to leaders.

From cleaning houses to filling houses, Connie Pheiff, Philanthropist, Social Venture Entrepreneur, and #BeyondMeToo Activist is the Jewel in the Crown of the Pheiff Group, Inc. With her distinctive voice audiences everywhere know her. She is blessed from her work as a corporate CEO, award-winning speaker, Podcaster, Mentor, Coach and author. She is provocative, edgy, and brings a genuine humor to the platform.

Connie is best known as the Unstoppable DIVA, Former Corporate Executive tuned Media Industrialist. Since founding the Pheiff Group, Inc. in 2007, she has become a Social Venture Entrepreneur, producer and host of the Connie Pheiff Show; and founder of Talent Concierge, representing the World’s most daring minds. She has authored five business books, and coming soon is her most powerful book yet, about her Unstoppable life.

She is the former CEO of Girl Scouts of Penn’s Woods Council, Recipient of the Community Leadership Award (2016); and most recently received the Inspirational Woman in Media Award (2019); Insights Success Magazine calls her “a symbol of Exemplary Entrepreneurship.” Connie always shares a bit of herself; a life of spectacularly epic fails. Through it all, her success hasn’t come in spite of her failures, but because of them.

Website
www.conniespeaks.com

Other Website
www.talentconcierge.co

LinkedIn
https://www.linkedin.com/in/conniepheiff/

Twitter
https://twitter.com/conniepheiff

Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/connie.pheiff

Instagram
https://www.instagram.com/conniepheiffshow/

Leadership Quote
“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more; you are a leader.”
–John Quincy Adams

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Transcript

This podcast is part of the C Suite Radio Network, turning the volume off on business.

Welcome to the Keep Leading Podcast, a podcast dedicated to promoting leadership development and sharing leadership insights. Here’s your host, the Leadership Excelerator, Eddie Turner.

Eddie Turner:
Hi, everyone. This is Eddie Turner, your host for the Keep Leading Podcast, a podcast dedicated to leadership development and insights. You’re going to want to tune in for today’s episode. Today, I talk to an advocate for lifestyle entrepreneurs.Now you may be wondering, even as I say that, what is a lifestyle entrepreneur? Well, I have Connie Pheiff here to explain that. She’ll tell us what it is and why it matters to you and I, right after this.

This podcast is sponsored by Eddie Turner LLC. Eddie Turner LLC delivers executive and leadership coaching, professional speaking, facilitation services, and management consulting across the globe. Eddie Turner LLC also creates voiceovers, serves as a master of ceremonies, as a panel and event moderator, and provides national media commentary. Visit EddieTurnerLLC.com to learn more.

Eddie Turner:
Hello, everyone. Welcome to the Keep Leading Podcast, a podcast dedicated to leadership development and insights. I’m your host Eddie Turner, the Leadership Excelerator. I work with leaders to accelerate performance and drive impact. My guest today is an advocate for lifestyle entrepreneurs. She’s a motivational leadership speaker, a business coach, and she’s a podcast host. In fact, it just so happens that she is one of the very first podcast I appeared on, she had me as her guest. She is known for being on stoppable and pretty much owns that word. I’m talking about the amazing Connie Pheiff.Connie, welcome to the Keep Leading Podcast.

Connie Pheiff:
Hey, thanks, Eddie. I am thrilled to be here. And, yes, I remember when you came on the show. Well, that was a long time ago.
Eddie Turner:
It was. I think it was literally the second one I’ve ever done and it’s still on my website. So, if folks want to hear that, they can go check it out.
Connie Pheiff:
Cool. I need to get you back because that could have been the second one I did.
Eddie Turner:
So now, I think I was probably like number 144 or something because I remember you had the most impressive interview sheet back. When I got ready to launch this podcast, I tried to find my interview sheet for yours because I was going to copy it but I couldn’t find it. So I had to start from scratch and make my own.
Connie Pheiff:
Well, I’m happy to share notes. Now we just launched yesterday’s show 451.
Eddie Turner:
Wow! That’s impressive.
Connie Pheiff:
I know, I can’t believe I’ve been doing it this long myself.
Eddie Turner:
So that’s all the more reason why I’m so excited to have you on my show because you truly are an expert. And you’re an expert in a lot of areas. And so I think it’s important for our leaders to hear about you but, first of all, tell people a little bit about your background.
Connie Pheiff:
Yeah, I do have a diverse background in a sense of I worked in the nonprofit sector for, oh gosh, over 20 years, it’s telling my age, but I was Director at the US Chamber of Commerce. And then from there I was director at a local chamber, the Greater Wilkes-Barre Chamber of Commerce in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, and then became the CEO of Girl Scouts of Penns Woods Council which was back in Pennsylvania and they merged about 12 years ago. So that’s when I started my business because with that realignment of the Girl Scouts, most of the leadership, basically we were out. So I came into the entrepreneur lifestyle business kind of, I’d say, through the back door because it was definitely not my plan to be doing that.
Eddie Turner:
Wow! So what wonderful career you’ve had and truly leading at the top both in the nonprofit sector and the profit sector.So, Connie with your experience and you shifting to this new area, I’ve not heard about a lifestyle entrepreneur. So help me and please help the listeners to understand what is a lifestyle entrepreneur.

Connie Pheiff:
It’s really interesting and it was definitely foreign to me after coming out of corporate and I was just like “Okay, what am I doing, where am I going?” And after a lot of Margaritas and Martinis around the pool because it was family time when I lost my job but when that was all over, I said “Okay, what am I going to do?” So, first of all, I went back to school. And so I said “Okay, I’ll just get more educated.” So I did that but then through it all, and I kept interviewing for other positions all over the East Coast from Maine to Miami, still interviewing for different CEO positions with Girl Scouts and it wasn’t happening, what I come to realize was I was soon to finish my degree and that was one of the issues with Girl Scouts. They wanted somebody with higher degrees and I didn’t have it at that time. So I was about ready to graduate with my degree thinking I was going to go back and interview again for another Girl Scout council and just something inside of me was like “No. Why do you want to do that?” I’ve been doing this for so many years. So I decided that continuing education in a way that I actually shifted, I finished my Masters in Public Administration but then I shifted to learn as much as I can about Social – How do you build a business on social media, all of the how-to’s – and I spent about two years and spent a lot of money learning everything on social. And from that what I came to learn is a lifestyle entrepreneur is the entrepreneur that could work anywhere, do what they want to be doing, work with the people that they want to be doing and they could set their budget of how much money that they want to be making. So I’m in East Coast where I’m really a southern gal from Kentucky but then East Coast, I ended up here in Los Angeles. Don’t even ask how I ended up here.
Eddie Turner:
That’s a big difference.
Connie Pheiff:
And my eyes just opened up to the possibilities of living that lifestyle that you want to be living. In a corporate, like I said, I loved what I did in corporate, I really loved but ask me today if I would ever step back into corporate. I don’t think so because I now have that taste of freedom. Although I was a leader before, I’m still leading now and I have a team that I lead but I could pick up today and say “You know what, we’re moving to Tennessee and we’re just going to bring everything with us and set up shop there” or you could be flying on an airplane and doing business with somebody. I go to the gym every morning and I’m sitting in the gym texting and people next to me, they’re are like “Are you working on my app?” or my husband would be “What are you doing?” and I’m like “I’m working,” he’ll see me taxing or emailing or doing something but it just gives you that freedom to live that lifestyle that you want to be living. Now don’t get me wrong. There are many challenges as we could probably both share a lot of that. So the challenge is you need to be selling, you need to be creating, you need to be delivering, and then you need to balance all of that out. So the challenges definitely do exist.The other change is my team. Now, before I had a team we were all in an office, I could just walk out my door and there was somebody. Now, my team is around the world. I have people in Barcelona, the Carolinas, you name it. I have team members there, there’d be production that do my social work. So I rely on them to do all of that work for me because you definitely need that team around you.

What I’m finding is a lot of individuals, corporate individuals are saying “You know what, I found that success. I reached that fame. What do I do next?” And that’s what we do through our agency. We work with those individuals, those folks that have found their fame whether it be in corporate, we work with athletes, we work with celebrities, entertainers, physicians because they’re saying “I’m in my 40 something,” someone “50 some things” and we work a lot with Gen-X generation but they say “I want out now. I don’t want to wait until it’s time to retire. I don’t want to wait for that gold watch.” So that’s why my business is thriving because people want to know how to do that because, just like me when I left girl scouts, I had a full team around me. And then when I left, I remember having to call my assistant and saying “How do I mail merge?” and I hear the phone drop but she comes back and I’m like “What?” and she’s like “I had to pick by yourself off the floor from laughing so hard.” She’s like “I can’t believe you’re asking me that.” I said “Well, I never had to do it. You did it?”

Eddie Turner:
Right. So, Connie, then are you saying that this idea of being a lifestyle entrepreneur is that you leave a corporation to set out entrepreneurship in a way that’s different than most people would envision it? Just crystallize for us, if you will, please lifestyle versus regular entrepreneurship.
Connie Pheiff:
Well, you have a regular entrepreneur. I mean, somebody could still use that tagline or that definition but you have somebody who’s an entrepreneur. They open a brick and mortar coffee shop on main street, okay? They’re more traditional entrepreneur. I grew up in a restaurant bar. They were entrepreneurs because they had that. A lifestyle entrepreneur is someone that can be sitting in the mountains or sitting on the beach and be working with clients around the globe.
Eddie Turner:
Thank you. You explained how you were doing that but I wanted to make sure we locked that down so our listeners can really capture that. So if they want to be able to not have a place that are kind of attached to but they are able to have the freedom that so many people are starting to crave in the world of digitization that we experience, it’s a different level of entrepreneurship.
Connie Pheiff:
Right, right. For example, our neighbors here, they’re going to be retiring, in their mid-50s, In a couple of months. They already bought their motor home and they want to travel around and while they’re travelling around, I’m helping him set up a business where he’s going to do videos and take photos and he’s going to do blogging to have that little extra income as they’re traveling around in their motor home. That’s a lifestyle entrepreneur.
Eddie Turner:
Wonderful. Well, thank you for sharing that definition and also thank you for giving us the example. How are lifestyle entrepreneurs changing the face of business?
Connie Pheiff:
Tremendously. The number continues to increase every day. Again, if you look at the population, you have the Baby Boomers which is, again, a huge number of people, some still leaving, that have left the business. And now you have Gen-X and what had happened which next, the best way I could probably explain it, is the definition of Gen-X. I did a lot of research around this. So folks that are Gen-X they want that freedom. There’s five main characteristics. So they want the relationships because their greatest fear is also their greatest need and that’s not having those relationships because you’re Gen-X generation really grew up as latchkey kids. So that’s why they’re looking at it differently. They want to have fun. They’re the bungee jumpers. They’re the computer game geeks. So they could do that anywhere. They want to go to the extreme gains. They want subjective experience which validates that something is real or something is good. They want the freedom and also family. So they want to have that attachment to their children unlike with many of them feel that they didn’t have with their parents because mom and dad were out working. So you have the Baby Boomers who have a greater leverage or a greater amount of money in the bank than Gen-Xers, do but Gen-Xers are saying “That’s not what I want. I want that freedom,. I want to be able to get out.” So the numbers and how that’s changing the face of business is tremendous because you have a lot of these individuals roughly from the ages 32 to about 58 saying “I’m out of here. I want to get out. I want to have my lifestyle business.”There’s another group, and I know some folks that are in it, they have young children and they travel around the US. And this is a whole different name of what they’ve named themselves. They travel around the US different points throughout the year. They just had a reunion in Florida a few weeks ago. They had almost 1500 families that are all included in this new culture of people and these are still part of the Gen-X generation and they’re saying “I don’t want corporate. I don’t want to have to worry about a house and cutting the grass. I want to take my kids, I want to teach them, I want to home school them, and I’m traveling around the country.” That I find amazing that somebody would actually do that. I don’t know if I could do that.

Eddie Turner:
I’m sure you could do it because you could do anything.
Connie Pheiff:
And I would probably enjoy too but I follow her, she’s a daughter of a good friend of mine, and her and her husband and their three daughters, they started as a 60-day trial almost four years ago and they’re still doing it.
Eddie Turner:
Wonderful.
Connie Pheiff:
And they’re making their money by blogging and talking about what they do.
Eddie Turner:
Yes, I’m seeing more and more people that are doing that. And I have a good friend who’s a coach. He took his family. He’s very similar but I just never attached that title, that name designation to it. So thank you for helping us to understand that.What we’d like to do now is to pause for a quick word from our sponsor.

This podcast is sponsored by Eddie Turner LLC. Organizations who need to accelerate their development of their leaders call Eddie Turner, the Leadership Excelerator. Eddie works with leaders to accelerate performance and drive impact. Call Eddie Turner to help your leaders one on one as their coach or to inspire them as a group through the power of facilitation or a keynote address. Visit EddieTurnerLLC.com to learn more.

This is Bob Dean, founder of Dean Learning and Talent Advisors and you’re listening to the Keep Leading Podcast with Eddie Turner.

Eddie Turner:
Okay, everyone, we are back with Connie Pheiff, the advocate for lifestyle entrepreneurs, the unstoppable motivational leadership speaker and podcast host and she’s telling us about the lifestyle entrepreneur.So tell us a little bit more, if you would, please. What we’d like to know is because this sounds like you’re really dependent on relationships, kind of like you described what you had established across the globe with your team. Why is it so important to build these relationships and not try to go at it alone?

Connie Pheiff:
You definitely can’t go at it alone. And, of course, I tried initially when I became an entrepreneur for a lot of different reasons but I heard my mentor say “You know what,” he goes “if you want to do this,” he said “first of all, do you have a toe in the water or are you all in?” He said “Because if you are all in, you need to make sure that you’re building your team around you.” I was like “No, I’m all in. What are you talking about? I’m doing this.” And I started building my team. And I couldn’t do what I do without my team. And I have a full production team that works with me on my show. I have folks that do my social, others that do my marketing so well that about this time last year we actually crashed our website because we had so many, we had about 800,000 hits to the website in 24 hours.
Eddie Turner:
That’s incredible.
Connie Pheiff:
It took it down.
Eddie Turner:
Envy of everyone to be able to get that many hits.
Connie Pheiff:
It was two weeks before an event. That wasn’t good. So I actually went back to my team and I’m like “Well, Kim Kardashian is not the only one that takes down a website.”
Eddie Turner:
Look out, Kim. You’ve got competition with Connie.
Connie Pheiff:
You got it, you got it.
Eddie Turner:
Well, you’re answer may be think about this famous quote – “If you want to go far, go alone. If you want to go farther, go together.” So you were saying that you realized that there was strength in numbers and that you should not try to go alone. Initially you did try to go alone but now you’ve got these incredible teams you were telling us about.
Connie Pheiff:
And you mentioned before ‘unstoppable’. I’ve used ‘unstoppable’ for a very, very long time and that was something that people were calling me because it was like “Okay. Well, we no longer sit here. We’re going to go here, we’re going to do this or we’re going to do this.” And even for speaking, I woke up one morning and I said to my husband “I’m going to become a motivational speaker” and he just looked at me and said “I know you will.”
Eddie Turner:
That’s why I said what I said earlier. I wasn’t just making a tried statement that you could do anything. Yes, you will do it.
Connie Pheiff:
I am not afraid. I can from the Appalachian mountains. I’m a hillbilly, I’ll admit it, and I am not afraid of anything.
Eddie Turner:
Connie will make it happen.
Connie Pheiff:
That’s right but I did learn, again, very quickly that we are in this together. And that’s when I changed my tagline to ‘Unstoppable Together’, waiting for the trademark to come back – I finally filed it – but we’re in this together. We are unstoppable together. If we didn’t have each other, if I didn’t have you, Eddie, if I didn’t have so many other people in my life, I mean, where would I be right now? I mean, yeah, I’m unstoppable, I could push through things, but isn’t it better to do it together with somebody else and climb those high mountains together or those deep valleys together or whatever it is to be able to have those people in your corner? It just carries tremendous weight and just gives you that much more confidence. It gives you that character to really want to push forward and push ahead. So, yeah, don’t ever go it alone.
Eddie Turner:
So if a leader is listening to this episode and they’re thinking “You know what, she’s right. I would like to leave corporate America and I would like to become a lifestyle entrepreneur but where would I start, where would I assemble a team from?”, what advice would you give them?
Connie Pheiff:
So the first advice I would give them is to find a mentor, a coach, someone that has gone through it because it’s pretty scary. I mean, it doesn’t matter who you are, it’s pretty scary to say “Okay, I’m going to step out with that cushion underneath me.” There’s a lot of things that you want to do before you go. First of all, you don’t want to go running out the door. You want to make sure that you have some steps and some things in place that you know where you are going. Again, work with that mentor and they’re going to help you guide you to what to be aware of, what to look at. And that was when the biggest mistakes I did. I wasn’t paying attention because I always had somebody else paying attention for me. Through trial and error I realized “Okay, we really need to pay attention here.” So you want to do that you want to be aware.And then the other thing too, the greatest advice I give people because now they’re like “Okay, what am I going to do? What’s that new widget I’m going to create? What’s that new program? What’s that new service that I’m going to create?”, take new out of there. Look at what you already know get. What do you already know, whether it’s from the business, whether it’s a hobby that you’ve done for years, and take that and you could actually turn that into a business. A friend of mine is an attorney. He flies airplanes on the weekends. So that’s always been a hobby for him. And he wants to really step away from that and become an entrepreneur. So, as he says, he bought the farm back in Pennsylvania and then he’s turned that into a place for his airplanes. So that has now become his business and he’s doing that. And he does legal stuff on the side, somewhat, but he took what he already knew and he turned that into a business.

Eddie Turner:
So don’t worry about trying to create a new line. That what you are already doing and have established expertise in and/or a hobby that you enjoy and turn that into your entrepreneurship venture.
Connie Pheiff:
Right, right.
Eddie Turner:
Wonderful. And then to assemble the teams, do you have a certain agencies or sources or things like that you would like to recommend that people use or that you have found our best practices? Is it always good to go grab my cousin Vinnie?
Connie Pheiff:
No because Vinnie may not like you. And a lot of people do. They rely on family members to do that. I mean, my daughter’s talked me about joining the business but we just haven’t gone there just yet. It’s really better to find some, and even to the start with because, again, we’re also looking at your budgets a lot, the best place to start is go to your local college and find someone who is there for market. I had interns for a years. Find someone who is there for marketing or technology or even photography because you need some really good headshots. You’re going to find all of your needs at the local college. Now internships, at one time you can get them for free but they do want to be paid and like 5 dollars an hour, they’re happy. It gives them beer money on the weekends or something.The other thing I would recommend too, if use an intern, give them a specific project. So the one project that I used to do was Business Before 9. It was a quarterly networking event that I held at the Country Club and then we would recognize a nonprofit in the community. So I would always have those two interns and they were responsible for that event.

Eddie Turner:
Excellent. So that’s a good suggestion. Interns on the college campus will say that they’re getting Starbucks money for the week.
Connie Pheiff:
Yeah, that’s right. And you have to have local, if you have a little space like I had where I used to live at, thinking of that, we had an extra room and I turned that into a little office for them and I got some desk and I got the goodwill or something. So this way they had their space, they came in. And then I would even take them to meetings, if I had a sales meeting, and it was a really good education for them but it was not saying “Oh, get my coffee” or just do menial work. Give them a project and they will do it. So that’s one way to start.And then once you really expand beyond there, just start looking. I mean, of course you could advertise or go to your local ‘Help Wanted’ place or job placement. I have not found any really good success with doing that. A lot of the folks that I have, like right now I have an awesome, awesome team and they all came from referrals.

Eddie Turner:
Wonderful. Well, thank you for sharing these tips with us and helping people to understand just what a lifestyle entrepreneur is and how it could be an option for them. And so what I’m hearing you say is that executive, celebrities, athletes, physicians, anyone who’s looking for their next act in life, if you will, they can think about becoming a lifestyle entrepreneur as a way of continuing to lead in other areas.
Connie Pheiff:
Right, right. And then they’d have a message to share. They could become international speakers.
Eddie Turner:
We love that at the National Speakers Association for sure.
Connie Pheiff:
That’s right.
Eddie Turner:
So to help keep leading, we always want to leave our leaders who are listening to us with a quote or some words of wisdom that they can think about today. What would you give our listeners just to think about today?
Connie Pheiff:
One of my favorite quotes come from John Quincy Adams and it’s “If you’re actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, and do more and become more, you are a leader.”
Eddie Turner:
That is absolutely one of my favorite quotes as well. Thank you for sharing that with us because we want to keep leading.Where can my listeners learn more about you and your amazing work that you’re doing?

Connie Pheiff:
Well, they could go over to TalentConcierge.co and, of course, they can find Connie Pheiff spelled many different ways on most social media platforms.
Eddie Turner:
Wonderful. So we’ll put that in the show notes so that folks can definitely find you and tune into your podcasts. It is now over 400 episodes. That’s just unreal.
Connie Pheiff:
Yeah, 451, the Connie Pheiff Show. Yeah, it’s just been amazing. And good luck with you on your show. I’ve been doing this for six years. And when I was first asked, I was like “A podcast what?”
Eddie Turner:
Well, truly a legend, truly a pioneer. Thank you so much being on the Keep Leading Podcast today, Connie.
Connie Pheiff:
And thank you for having me here, Eddie.
Eddie Turner:
That concludes this episode, everyone. I’m Eddie Turner, the Leadership Excelerator, reminding you that leadership is not about your title or position. Leadership is an activity. Leadership is action. It’s not the case of once a leader, always a leader. It’s not a garment we put on and take off. We must be a leader at our core and allow it to emanate in all we do. So whatever you’re doing, always keep keeping.

Thank you for listening to your host Eddie Turner on The Keep Leading Podcast. Please remember to subscribe to The Keep Leading Podcast on iTunes or wherever you listen. For more information about Eddie Turner’s work please visit EddieTurnerLLC.com.

Thank you for listening to C Suite Radio, turning the volume up on business.

The Keep Leading!™ podcast is for people passionate about leadership. It is dedicated to leadership development and insights. Join your host Eddie Turner, The Leadership Excelerator® as he speaks with accomplished leaders and people of influence across the globe as they share their journey to leadership excellence. Listen as they share leadership strategies, techniques and insights. For more information visit eddieturnerllc.com or follow Eddie Turner on Twitter and Instagram at @eddieturnerjr. Like Eddie Turner LLC on Facebook. Connect with Eddie Turner on LinkedIn.