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SPI 725: The #1 Way to Scale Up Your Business with Eric Partaker

The seven words that can hold you back more than any others are: “It is faster to do it myself.” This kind of short-term thinking leads to burnout and stunts your business growth.

In this episode, returning guest Eric Partaker shares the blueprint for transitioning from scrappy founder to leadership master. This is priceless knowledge based on Eric’s work coaching Fortune 50 CEOs, architecting Skype’s success, and running several companies. You’re not going to want to miss this chat!

Eric helps you lay the foundation for sustainable business growth and explains why entrepreneurship cannot be separated from personal development. We discuss intentionality, the EAR framework for leadership, giving praise, and handling mistakes.

For more, get a free copy of Eric’s incredible book, The 3 Alarms, and his powerful tools and resources at

Also, check out my conversation with Eric in episode 438. You’ll hear about how he worked himself into a heart attack at 35,000 feet in the air and the reawakening that spurred his desire to help others. Enjoy!

Today’s Guest

Eric Partaker

Eric is an inspiring, entertaining, and dynamic speaker who delivers his messages through powerful stories. He is uniquely positioned to speak about peak performance, leadership, and entrepreneurship, and has shared stages with Jesse Itzler, Lord Alan Sugar, Bear Grylls, Stedman Graham, Double Gold Olympic Champion Kelly Holmes, and Stephen M.R. Covey, to name a few.

Over the last 20 years, he has advised Fortune 50 CEOs while at McKinsey & Company, helped build Skype’s multi-billion dollar success story, and built several other multi-million dollar businesses.

Eric also continues to research evidence-based studies in psychology, neuroscience, habit change, leadership, and peak performance.

Regardless of background, Eric believes we all share the same common quest — to reach our full potential in business and life.

You’ll Learn


SPI 725: The #1 Way to Scale Up Your Business with Eric Partaker

Eric Partaker: The seven words that hold back founders more than any other seven words are, “It’ll be faster to do it myself.”

If you’re measurement of time is the short term, it will be faster to do it yourself. But it’ll be faster in the medium and long term if you go through a bit of a time trough in that moment to provide the coaching, provide the training, provide the extra effort for the person.

That takes time, but it frees up tremendous amounts of time in the medium to longer term.

Pat Flynn: So many of us want our businesses to grow. We want to scale up, as they say. There’s a lot of different ways to go about doing that. But this episode, I got to say, is going to be the number one way to do it. Because it’s not just about your business. It’s about leadership. It’s about your life and all those things combined with each other to help you get to where you want to go.

And today we’re talking with Eric Partaker, somebody who’s been on the show hundreds of episodes ago. Who told an incredible story about burnout. You can listen to the episode after this if you’d like, episode 438. And we do talk about overwhelm and business and life and all those kinds of things back then.

But we talk about it in the context of scaling your business this time. And we get into the nitty gritty, and I promise you, this will be an episode that you will want to listen to, whether you’re a business owner, just starting out, whether you are a CEO, a founder, a integrator, an operator, a team member of another business, whoever you are.

This is the episode for you. Eric Partaker, EricPartaker.Com. Author of The 3 Alarms and a good friend. Here he is.

Announcer: You’re listening to the Smart Passive Income Podcast, a proud member of the Entrepreneur Podcast Network, a show that’s all about working hard now, so you can sit back and reap the benefits later. And now your host, he believes everyone should create a vision board specifically with people they want to meet one day. Pat Flynn.

Pat Flynn: Eric, welcome back to the Smart Passive Income Podcast. Thank you so much for joining me again today.

Eric Partaker: Yeah, it’s great to be here, Pat. I remember last time we spoke, I was actually living in London at the time. I think it was pre COVID.

Pat Flynn: Definitely pre COVID. Where are you located now?

Eric Partaker: So after 17 years enjoying the wonderfully cloudy and rainy weather of London, I traded that in for the sunny weather of Lisbon, Portugal. So we, we live just outside of Lisbon. Actually, it’s a small historical village or town called Cascais. And we’re about seven minutes from the beach and, you know, we have our three dogs. Yeah, it’s just, it’s a totally, totally different life now.

Pat Flynn: Incredible. I want to ask you more about that because Portugal plays a special role in my heart. Lisbon, in fact, was the first city that I ever visited in Europe, but we’ll save that for maybe a private conversation later, because I definitely want to ask you some questions about scaling up a business, something that you coach a lot of other businesses on. The last time you were on the show, we talked a lot about things like productivity and you told this incredible story about you on a plane and something happening to you then and then that led to a number of other things and plus your exit with Skype and just so many other things. So everybody should go back and listen to that after this episode. That was episode 438.

But today I want to talk to you about scaling up a business and like, just by definition, what does that mean to you, as far as scaling up? I think different people have different thoughts about what that exactly means. But to you, what does that look like?

Eric Partaker: Yeah. Just for a bit of, you know, context setting for the folks joining us today.

So my background, I started off as a strategy consultant with McKinsey and then helped build up Skype. And it’s very early days. He’s back when Skype was cool. It’s not cool anymore, but there was a time when it was like 17 years ago. And then we, we had a big exit to eBay, which was a life changing event.

I ended up building a chain of Mexican restaurants thereafter, and then now moved down to Portugal. And now these days, I work with, as, as you mentioned, business scaling is, is my focal point. Now I work with about 30 or so founders, CEOs, lots of different industries. I’m industry agnostic, but I’m like psychographic specific.

And what I mean by that is that. Although all these companies are different, they range from like billion dollar companies down to pre revenue, you know, well funded companies, and even, even creators, some creators I have as clients as well, but they all share the same psychographic in that they all are thirsty to, you know, still unlock their full potential to still, you know, hit that next level, whatever that is for them.

So I don’t believe in pure business coaching. You know, you reference, for example, the first show that we did and in that show, you know, I, I shared, you know, nearly dying from a heart attack on a plane because I had just literally ran myself into the ground and that’s why I don’t do pure business coaching today because I think if you separate the business from the person, especially when talking about entrepreneurs, when these things are so interwoven that bad things can happen, right?

You have to approach them holistically. And so in that sense, I think of scaling the company or the business as the hardware and if the hardware is operate correctly, the software needs to be coded correctly in the software to other pillars to scale and parallel to the business with the company. And that’s the leadership of the person at the helm, and then also them as a human being, are they scaling themselves? And there’s an A to B journey in each of those pillars. So when I’m working with a client on the company side, it’s helping them transition from startup to scale up. Within that leadership pillar, it’s helping them transition from founder to CEO. And then within that self pillar, it’s to transition from current to best self and the key word across all of those pillars is scale and scale for me means efficient growth because growth at all costs isn’t what we want in a variety of arenas, right? Yeah, if something grows uncontrollably in the body, you know, that’s cancer, right and that’s not good, right?

So, you know, we want efficient growth from a business point of view, you know, that means, you know, the revenue is you know, growing at a faster rate than the cost and the profitability is increasing. And from a leadership point of view, it means that, you know, other people are growing as leaders underneath you.

And it’s not just down to you to call the shot. So that’s kind of a bit of background and a bit of like a high level snapshot. Yeah. My, my perspective on it.

Pat Flynn: Yeah. I mean, I think about it. In terms of the analogy of like a garden, right? If it’s just growing uncontrollably, it just becomes a mess and things aren’t able to grow.

In fact, they’re getting in the way of each other. So I love that you’re taking this approach and sort of anti just business only. And I think that’s a very smart way to go about it. If only more people heard, or at least thought about that beforehand, because my gosh, I know a lot of people who’ve burnt out for sure.

You included, yeah, you told that story and I almost had been there. We’ve had people on the show before who have told their dramatic stories and many people ending up in the hospital because they were overworked. And I think, you know, why do you think that that’s actually pretty common for when a, when a business starts to grow, they just kind of go all in on it and forget about life and health and relationships. And it’s just all about the business. What internally is driving that and how do we manage that?

Eric Partaker: I mean, that’s a great question. I think there’s internal and external kind of motivations for that. So for me personally, my motivation was that, so we all want to strive to achieve more, to do more, to, you know, reach, reach your full potential, but there’s two ways in which you can do it, right?

You can strive from a place of lack. Like if we were thinking about like a little Lego character, for example, you can strive from the sense of my arm is missing. I need you to attach my arm, please, so that I’m complete. Or, Oh, you know, I want to do that thing because it’s a nice little hat that I can add to my, you know, my body.

So striving for a place of lack is not a good feeling because when you hit the goals, you feel very, very incomplete. Your whole identity, your self worth, right, is attached to the business. And so if things don’t go to plan, you as a human being feel like you’re not going to plan. And that’s like almost like an existential threat.

Striving from a place of abundance is totally different because yeah, I’d like to win that race or do that next thing. I’m competitive. I want to do it, but if I fail, I’ll learn from it. And I won’t kind of take that as a judgment on, you know, I’m a worthless human being, or, you know, I may failure, right?

So a bit of self labeling. So the first half of my career was all stuck in that kind of very internal you’re striving not from a good place, striving from a place of lack rather than abundance. I don’t know. Can you relate to that at all? Did you ever have similar feelings or?

Pat Flynn: Yeah. I mean, when you talked about moving on to the next thing and striving for more and considering each new challenge to be lessons to learn that can then stack and then stack and then stack, that’s where I sort of relate because I want to keep going.

I want to keep growing, not because I don’t have things, but because I just enjoy it and I want more. And so how do we begin to throttle that without feeling like, oh, well, if I don’t shoot for the next thing, then, you know, something’s missing, right? How do we, I don’t want to call it settle, but how do we opt out of more and opt into what we already have?

Eric Partaker: Yeah, and this is so fundamental to that self pillar that I was talking about. Which my book, which, which I know we’re going to be offering to everyone listening in. My book, The 3 Alarms is all about in that book, you know, I talked about taking a holistic approach, right? To realize in your full potential. Think of it this way, if you’re on your deathbed, which I thought I was 35,000 feet in the air, I thought it was gonna be lights out.

And if you’re given five more minutes, you’re not going to want to use that five more minutes to close another deal or, you know to clear out your inbox. You’re going to want to hug your loved ones a little bit longer, tell them how much you love them, how much you care, right? And and it’s important to kind of remember that today.

Because those are the things that ultimately matter. And for me, yeah, your path to deepest fulfillment is by recognizing that we’re, we’re on a three legged stool here. So we got our work, our health, and our relationships, and if you take one of those legs out, things become a bit wobbly. You take two of them out, things are, you know, extremely wobbly.

And so I think the way to balance is to have goals in each of those areas. Define what best looks like, and on a daily basis, try to evidence it. So a lot of people, for example, say, I want to be a better spouse or a better parent. But what do they do on a daily or a weekly basis that I was standing there on the outside with a clipboard observing that would be evidence that they’re actually stepping into that rather than, you know, just saying that.

Pat Flynn: I saw a tweet the other day, somebody, I can’t remember who, I wish I could, but they were like, you know, an exercise for living through your day would be to imagine that there’s a camera crew just following you around and you’re on a reality show.

It’s like, how would you think the audience would respond to the things you were choosing to do or choosing not to do? And it really made me think about that. Like, first of all, I wouldn’t want a camera crew around me all the time. That just sounds terrible. But at the same time, if there was one, you know, definitely get me to go, Oh, like what example am I setting?

Not just for an audience out there who I don’t know, but example for my kids, example for my team, example for my audience, et cetera. So I love what you said there. And I think that this idea, I love that we’re starting here because a lot of us want to grow our businesses. We want to make more money. We want to scale, but if we’re not able to scale ourselves and grow as just a human, then none of that’s either going to work or it’s just not going to work in a way that aligns with who we are.

So what, what tips or what strategies do you have, you know, we might benefit from reminding people what the three alarms is. You can go and grab that book. We have a link actually, Eric’s very generous and offering a ton of things for you to go and check out right now. Actually, we’ll drop the link here and we’ll drop it again at the end. And one of those things on that page that you can get for free right now is his 3 Alarms book. But maybe a quick recap on what that is. Cause I know it does align with this part of scale.

Eric Partaker: Yeah. So that self pillar about scaling the South is about recognizing that the, the 80-20 to life improvement, the 20 percent of things that you could focus on for 80 percent of the improvement you’re seeking is just to focus on defying what best looks like in three domains. So, on the work front, on the health front, and on the relationship front. And the three alarms is just, you know, it’s a catchy tool that relates to it all.

What it is, is on my, literally on my phone, so every single day, so at 6:30am, for example, I have an alarm that goes off that says, world fitness champion. And I’m not a world fitness champion, but that’s the version of me that decides to work out in the morning and go to the gym. And that’s the version of me that when I’m not feeling like working out, you know, says to myself, well, yeah, but what would a world fitness champion do? That’s kind of like changing into that identity. And then at 9am, the next alarm goes off for me right now. It says world’s best coach. Cause that’s what I do pretty much at the moment. And just reminds me, you know, how inspired, reliable you know, supportive would I be if I was the world’s best coach for my clients?

And then the last alarm goes off at 5:30pm each day. And it just says, World’s Best Husband and Father, to prompt the question, How would the world’s best husband and father walk through that door right now? These alarms are just cues to remind myself of a phrase that represents me at my best in these three critical domains.

So that I operate with a bit more intentionality, you could think of it as like when the alarm goes off, it’s almost like, Oh, that reality show TV crews around you right now, right? So how would that version of you behave? I mean, we, we know it shows up in like super subtle ways. You know, I mean, we both have kids.

And there’s times when the kids, you know, it feels like they’re swinging from the chandeliers if we want them to just like behave and listen, do you always react perfectly like the best version of you would react in those situations? I don’t. But by being a little bit more intentional, you know, I react a little bit better than if I didn’t have that intention.

So the three alarms in a way is by, it’s like proactively installing that camera crew to appear at different times.

Pat Flynn: I love that. And it’s on, you know, on one hand there are people who might say, Oh, like this isn’t built into you. You have to have these triggers to remind you to do these things. Like, why can’t you just do them on your own?

And it’s like, yeah, I can’t because we are just so automated as humans sometimes that we forget. And it’s okay to have alarms to remind you to do these things. It’s similar to how I literally have on my calendar family time, right? So that I can create those boundaries around when I should be fully focused and my phone should be away and I, and my laptop is closed and I can be all in with the kids and doing what we’re doing, cooking dinner together, playing board games, doing homework, et cetera. So I, I love that. And so everybody definitely go check out to go and check out Eric’s bundle, including The 3 Alarms book that you can get there now.

I’d love to shift into the discussion about the transition between founder and CEO. What needs to happen for that to happen? I know that I remember, and this was a slow process for me, going from what I called myself, scrappy entrepreneur, to, you know, professional entrepreneur, or CEO, and treating the business a little bit differently. What are the hurdles that a person might have to go through while scaling to go from founder and scrappy to now CEO of a company?

Eric Partaker: The best way to communicate this is just to think of like an analogy. So… If this, if it was a football game, the founder will run on to the field and at times quarterback, you know, be a lineman, play defensive end. Whereas a CEO sits on the sideline and already has all the star players on the field. Would never dare run onto the field, actually, like that would never even happen, right?

You’d never even seen a game where that happens in the NFL, like with the coaches, like playing quarterback. And instead, what are they doing? They’re just directing traffic and, you know, providing the right advice and making sure that the team of star players out there wins as many games as possible. Now, that’s not an easy transition to make though, right?

So, you start as a founder and you start in the trenches, and it can be really difficult to get yourself out of the trenches. You know, one of the, the, you know, the key things in that same analogy is that you have the right players on the field such that you don’t feel compelled to go out there and do it yourself.

You know, and that, that requires hiring the right people, you know, providing the right feedback and coaching them to a higher level of play and performance, allowing them to, you know, make mistakes inevitably. Once burnt, twice shy, it’s like you have to actually go through the mistakes to learn and all of that is super difficult often. It was for me, for the founder who was like, yeah, but I just know how it should be done. And the seven words that hold back founders more than any other seven words in this department are, it’ll be faster to do it myself.

Pat Flynn: Yeah, I’ve said that before.

Eric Partaker: And it always is. If you’re limiting your focus and your measurement of time is the short term, it will be faster to do it yourself, but it’ll be faster in the medium and long term if you go through a bit of a time trough in that moment to provide the coaching, provide the training, provide the extra effort for the person to complete whatever it was they’re trying to complete.

Maybe not at the level that you want it, 70%, 80%, maybe the next time it’s 80 or 90%. That takes time. That actually takes more time in the short term, but it frees up tremendous amounts of time in the medium to longer term. That’s true. The average founder is so short sighted though, that they, in this area, right within this realm, that they struggle to allow themselves to go through that additional short term time trap. Can you relate at all to what I’ve, what I’ve said?

Pat Flynn: Yeah, completely. I mean, a lot of it is as well as the fact that we’re just all impatient and we want results now. And so we don’t put in the time and effort to train somebody or find somebody who can do those things for us.

It took me years to finally get to that point and I’m so grateful I finally got there, but I do wish I had done it sooner. A lot of it was being afraid to let go of some things that I actually enjoyed. And so I’m curious your thoughts about that. The person who is a founder, who is, you know, quarterback, if you will, they have the helmet on, they’re getting roughed up, but they’re enjoying it.

They’re, they’re good at it, but they want to grow and scale. That means they have to put that helmet down and put that football away and give that football to somebody else, but then they never feel like they’re playing quarterback again, the thing that they initially loved doing that they were known for that I know is also hard.

You know, it’s, it’s like a, the web designer who starts an agency and then now they’re just managing people all day and they never get to design anymore. They don’t, they don’t get to do what they loved. How do you address that? And the sort of loss of the thing that a person originally started when it comes to growth and scale.

Can a person still be, you know, throwing the football and putting the helmet on every once in a while whilst being a coach or being CEO?

Eric Partaker: Yeah, I think in part, I think it depends on the business that you’re trying to build. So for example if you’re, if you’re building a more of like a lifestyle business rather than a hyper growth business.

So for example, in a hyper growth business, you’re going to have many more instances of needing to set back and find the absolute all star, even if you love doing it, who can do it as well as you, you know, maybe even better so that you’re able to focus on the next thing and keep putting together that all star team.

Cause it needs that very tight, like almost like a symphony, you know, the orchestration and that role is critical. If it’s a lifestyle business, I think there’s more room to, you know, continue doing, you know, the thing that you love and having your like pet area of the business, provided you’re not creating like havoc for everyone else, right, right, right, and still deliver a good result.

Pat Flynn: That makes sense. And then I’m thinking about hyper growth businesses, businesses that want to grow and scale. They don’t just coach and even train the individual all stars. They have staff of coaches under them, like managers, right? Correct. Like the offensive lineman coach, right?

And the defensive coach in addition to the head coach. And that way the head coach can focus on what they need to focus on and making the right moves and making the right business deals and all those kinds of things and studying the plays and studying the opponents versus, okay, now I have to help, you know, my quarterbacks figure out how to work with their wide receivers.

Like, no, that’s what the offensive coach is for, right?

Eric Partaker: Totally. And the way that you measure the success in the example that you’re using of the offensive coach is what is the total output of the offensive team not what is the coach doing on a day to day basis and that extends back to business as well so when you’re not managing others and you’re just an individual contributor then you’re worth is related to your individual output. What are you actually producing on a day to day basis? The moment you’re responsible for other people in the team, then now your worth is measured, your value is, well, what’s the total output of the team that you’re managing and leading? And so that’s, that can be hard for people, you know, when they go from.

Oh, yeah, but I’m the one who loves writing the code and, you know, doing all this stuff too micromanaging, yeah, to managing the team now, you know, that can be challenging.

Pat Flynn: How does one empower their… directors, the directors would be sort of the equivalent of this. I, at least in our business, we have, you know, myself and Matt sort of at the top Matt CEO of the company right now, but we also have our directors, Jillian, our director of community and Sandy, our director of marketing, and they have people under them.

So we do our best to empower the directors to take responsibility, but also feel that they are empowered to make decisions that are in the best interest of the company. And so, me and Matt, we’re just mostly talking to the directors and letting them call the shots, so long as the commander’s intent is just known between everybody.

Yeah. How does a new founder… learn to become a great leader. And this speaks to what you said earlier about growing in leadership. What can a person do to become a better leader? How do we train ourselves to do that? Or is it just a matter of literally making a bunch of mistakes and learning as we go?

Eric Partaker: Leadership is so vast and obviously we, we don’t have time to go get to a huge amount of depths here. This is such a massive question. I’ll give you a nice 80 20. 20 percent 80 percent of the benefit, right? So one way you can think about it is if I’m leading well, I have people’s ear, right? If you have someone’s ear, you know, what does that mean?

It means that they respect you, you know, they that they acknowledge you and, you know, they want to listen to what you have to say. So let’s just use ear as a simple little acronym for leadership. You have to have clear expectations for the people that you’re managing. Yeah, so for all of your directors, I know the person who’s director of community.

Okay, well, what are the key metrics? What are the X to Y movements we want to see that evidence that the community is growing in the direction that we want? A, accountability. What are our communication rhythms? How are we measuring progress? How are we making that publicly available? When things are off target, if your goal should be green, but it’s suddenly yellow or red, you know, what’s the sequence of events that happens thereafter?

How do we drive accountability? And then the R is for reward. It’s really, really easy. It’s easy to do this in marriages. It’s easy to do this in businesses. It’s easy to forget to reward and praise people as much as we should. I forget what book it’s from with regard to marriages, but there’s something like successful marriages exhibit a five to one praise to like negative comment ratio.

Yeah. So it’s not even like a one for one or a two for one. It’s like a massive difference, five to one. And I think great leaders praise often. They praise in public, they critique in private. Yeah. And they just make sure that their people know that, hey, I think you’re doing a good job. And they connect it to why. I think you’re doing a good job for these reasons, not just think you’re doing a great job.

That’s not as useful as, you know, great job. You knew that that metric was super important. You applied some innovative thinking to kind of like drive the results in a way that I didn’t even expect and the feedback from all those in the community that you’ve touched is, you know, phenomenal. So wonderful, you know, that sort of thing.

Pat Flynn: I love that. For those listening, have this moment be a reminder to consider how often have you or how recently have you praised those who are helping you and working in the business. Thankfully, we have a culture within our brand that is very much based on reward and shout outs. And we have something called bonusly that’s used within our community, where our own team members can highlight and also give points to other team members who have done great things, and then those points could be redeemed for gift cards and other things at the end of the month. And so we, we definitely see that to be very important, but I love this acronym and I know we could go for hours just to talk about leadership. The other important component of leadership that I want to ask about is when a, when a person who is attempting to become a great leader makes a mistake, oftentimes a person will either become so defensive because they don’t want to, you know, show that they made a mistake. Or they might get down on themselves and go, well, I’m just not cut out to be a leader.

How might a leader or a future leader learn about how to handle the mistakes they’ve made? And what’s the best way to process that, especially with regards to the team and optics with the team and that sort of thing?

Eric Partaker: This, I love this, this topic. So there’s a line that I came up with recently, which is, an infallible leader makes their team more likely to fail. And the reason that’s the case is because Infallibility projects something which we just know isn’t true. Like we all know, you know, that everyone makes mistakes, that nothing’s perfect.

And so when a leader is projecting infallibility, it’s basically projecting an unsafe environment. An unsafe environment, where you can’t make mistakes means what? It means you’re going to take less risk. It means you are going to hoard resources. Perhaps it means that you’re going to, you know, silo your communications, you know, manage your own turf, protect your own spot. Ultimately, which means that, you know, if we go back to the team analogy, it’s going to be very difficult for you to win a game.

If the quarterback is not working closely with the lineman, then the quarterback gets sacked, you know it just doesn’t work out. So mistakes are in fact, crucible, super important leadership development moments. So mistakes and admission of mistakes, highlighting them, especially when it’s top down is one of the quickest ways that you can build trust in an organization and trust that’s at the foundation of, of great leadership of great cultures.

Yeah, I’d encourage anybody, you know, when you make a mistake to just admit it. Just be like, look you know, you’re in your weekly team meeting or whatever, a one to one meeting. And I know I was responsible for this, unfortunately, I messed it up. And here’s the reasons why. Here’s what I’ve learned from it. And you know, let’s, let’s move on. And when you do that as a leader, you basically tell people, Oh, I’m not infallible. I do make mistakes. It’s okay if you make mistakes, and the most important thing, right, is that you focus on what you’ve learned.

Pat Flynn: That’s great, Eric. I want to discuss one more topic before we finish up in the last five minutes here. We talked a lot about scale in different kinds of ways. I love how you’ve broken this down and you’ve taken this holistic approach. And I think the leadership aspect I agree is of utmost importance, especially when it comes to, Scaling with a team and learning how to let go and all the things we talked about.

As far as the business itself and generating more revenue in a business, how do you investigate what might need to happen in a business, perhaps a business that you’re coaching, for example, to understand where scalability can happen a lot of times. We take the approach of, Oh, we just need more traffic. So then everything becomes all about getting more traffic. Or maybe it’s we need better conversions.

So then we hire a copywriter because that’s where conversions happen on our sales page. And, you know, oftentimes we take these 2 X approaches. You’ve probably heard of the book. 10x is easier than 2x. I’m curious your thoughts on that and how that relates to scalability in businesses and how you help a person understand what the best opportunity is in front of them.

Eric Partaker: To guide this area, one of the critical questions that I ask is if you were to wave a wand and in three years time the business was exactly as you would like it to be, what would it look like? And usually I’ve never met a person who can’t actually paint that picture quite vividly. And when you’re speaking to the CEO or the founder, you know, and I situations where I’m, you know, I’m coaching both, you know, the founders, maybe in a more visionary role and then the CEO is kind of doing, you know, if we’re talking like rocket fuel terms, doing more like the integrated role, but they always like naturally weave a life element in there with every entrepreneur I meet, there’s always a, I’d like the business to be like this, and then it would allow me to do more. And so I start there. And then the next question I always ask is, and I’m actually taking you through the questions because I think it would be far more useful for people listening to actually reflect and think about these questions themselves.

Pat Flynn: Yeah. No, I appreciate that.

Eric Partaker: Yeah. And and then the next question I ask is, okay, great. So why don’t you have that now? And then that usually triggers a, Oh, yeah. Why don’t I have that now? And then they go through various things and of course it ends up being like a laundry list. And that doesn’t help us either. So then I ask them a third question, which is, great.

So, if everything were to stay exactly as it is right now, not necessarily static for the things that are moving, they continue at their current trajectory, but if everything were to stay the same as it is right now, where’s the one area where change would have the greatest impact? And usually the founder or the CEO, depending on who you’re talking to, knows their business so well that they go, Oh, it’s here.

And that’s not the final answer because we keep going through that sequence in like a, you know, when I’m supporting a company, like with, we keep revisiting that. So it ends up being. A way to tackle and approach things sequentially and most of the things though now I gave you more of like a meta framework, but if we were to get like a little bit more micro like some of the common things that come up usually relate to an absence of the right people are the right systems, which are the two things that typically enable scale. And by right people, I don’t necessarily mean that, oh, it’s the wrong people and we need to kind of get rid of folks. It could mean that they’re right, but not just right yet. They need a bit more training, a bit more training, a bit more motivation.

It could even relate to that leadership pillar. Right, like a man’s in a marriage and he has a wonderful wife and the wife leaves and he later finds out that she left because he didn’t appreciate her enough and had he appreciated her more, everything would have been fine. Well, then that can relate to your people as well.

You can have a great person who leaves simply because. They weren’t seeing, you know, I love the phrase and if you see an avatar, you know where they go, I see you, you know, and I just, I love that phrase, you know, and you have to see your people, you have to see what they’re doing, see their worth, see their value.

Pat Flynn: Love it. And I love how you led with questions. That’s a sign of a great coach, is a coach who asks questions. And I know that your clients, and I know one of them, Ali Abdaal, and what he’s been able to do to grow. He’s just done amazing things and he’s worked with you. In case a person is listening and they’re like, Man, I’d love to… potentially see what Eric has to offer me and, and, and see if he has room to coach me or my company, or might they go to learn more about you and what you have to offer?

Eric Partaker: I mean, first port of call is just hit up the business bundle that we’re offering, right? Because I love working with people. Obviously I love what I do.

I’m in a phase in life where it’s exciting. It’s not like, you know, my primary thing, get as many clients as he can and make as much money as he can. So I would say first port of call, just become familiar with the things that I talk about, you know, kind of the universe that I operate in with that business bundle, you know, you’ll be able to sign up the weekly newsletter, you’re going to get a free copy of my book, The 3 Alarms. There’s a scale up business assessment. If you’re operating or running a business, it’s a diagnostic that you can take pinpoint, you know, where do you should focus to improve? And there’s even a peak performance assessment in there to show you if you want to close that gap between your current and best self, you know, where are the areas that you should focus on and start there.

And then if you do feel like reaching out, you know, we’ll, we’ll be connected at that point and then just ping me all they have to do.

Pat Flynn: Love it. Eric, thank you so much for this. Again, You can get all that and perhaps work further with Eric from there. So Eric, thank you again for your time today, your wisdom. I appreciate you so much and your book and everything that you shared. So I wish you all the best and thank you again.

Eric Partaker: Awesome. Thanks a lot, Pat. And thanks everyone for giving us your time. Thank you.

Pat Flynn: Alright, I hope you enjoyed that conversation with Eric Partaker, again, you can get that business bundle of his over at And I would love for you to check that out and also check out the episode that he was on previously, which was episode 438. However, if you’d like all the links and everything we mentioned in this episode today, All you have to do is head over to

Scaling up your business the right way, holistically. Eric just brought it today. Thank you so much for, for everything. And I hope that you got a lot of inspiration from this and it might require a re listen, in fact, and a listen with your team, perhaps, or your co founders, etc. And then again, listen to 438. He talks about his near death experience and so many incredible things that have taught him and helped him get to where he’s at. And he’s definitely an inspiration to me as well. So Eric, thank you so much.

Thank you for listening through. I appreciate you. And again, the show notes, links, and everything we mentioned today can be found at Till next time, cheers. Peace out and make sure to get all the rest of our shows subscribe. Don’t miss out.

Thank you so much for listening to the Smart Passive Income podcast at I’m your host, Pat Flynn. Sound editing by Duncan Brown. Our senior producer is David Grabowski, and our executive producer is Matt Gartland. The Smart Passive Income Podcast is a production of SPI Media, and a proud member of the Entrepreneur Podcast Network. Catch you next week!

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