My guest today is an avid networker and mobile business strategist, chef, podcaster, and golfer.

He is co-founder and Director of Business Development at ChamberDS.com. Chamber D.S. is a complete app and mobile business agency that turns ideas into profitable app businesses. My guest develops and grows relationships with clients, agencies and companies, as well as specializes in mobile app strategy consulting.

He also hosts The App Academy, a successful podcast with the aim of sharing wisdom from the most successful app business owners on the planet, to teach the necessary steps to make more money from app businesses.

Jordan Bryant.

The Transcript

How to Get Advice

Jonny Nastor: Hack the Entrepreneur is part of Rainmaker.FM, the digital business podcast network. Find more great shows and education at Rainmaker.FM.

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Voiceover: Welcome to Hack the Entrepreneur, the show which reveals the fears, habits, and inner battles behind big name entrepreneurs and those on their way to joining them. Now here is your host, Jon Nastor.

Jonny Nastor: Welcome back to another episode of Hack the Entrepreneur. You are very, very, very awesome for joining me. I do appreciate it. I’m your host Jon Nastor, but you can call me Jonny.

My guest today is an avid worker and mobile business strategists, chef, podcaster, and golfer. He is the co-founder and the director of Business Development at ChamberDS.com. Chamber D.S. is a complete app and mobile business agency that turns ideas into profitable app businesses. My guest develops and grows relationships with clients, agencies, and companies, as well as specializing in mobile app strategy consulting.

He also hosts the App Academy, a successful podcast with the aim of sharing wisdom from the most successful app business owners on the planet and which teaches the necessary steps to making more money from the app business.

Now, let’s hack Jordan Bryant.

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Welcome back to Hack the Entrepreneur. We have another special guest today. Jordan, welcome to the show.

Jordan Bryant: Jon, thank you so much. I’m pumped to be here.

Jonny Nastor: Awesome, awesome. All right, Jordan, let’s jump straight into this.

Jordan Bryant: All right.

Jonny Nastor: Jordan, as an entrepreneur, what is the one thing that you do that you feel has been the contributor to your successes so far?

How and Why to Build Strategic Relationships

Jordan Bryant: I would say it’s the ability to create strategic relationships. Twenty-five years young, and I figured out a long time ago life is about relationships. If you ask for advice, you’ll get money. If you ask for money, you’ll get advice. It’s all been about just trying to connect with people and learn what makes them great. That typically led to awesome opportunities for me.

Jonny Nastor: Wow. Where did this come from? Most people, they’re 50 when they realize this.

Jordan Bryant: Yeah. Well, really, it comes from my parents honestly. My parents are very social, very socially outgoing. My dad was a league sport athlete in college. He’s very integrated with the sports community in my hometown — little town, Hood River, about an hour out of Portland, Oregon. He was my coach up because he’s so ingrained in the sports community, so I learned early on how to ask advice and how to be coachable. From that, I transitioned over into my entrepreneurial ventures and wanted to know how and why things work.

Actually, I started as a pre-med student, just wanting to know how and why things work. The passion for learning forced me to get out of my comfort zone and ask for advice, and it steered me in the directions of mentorship. I’m a massive proponent of mentorship. I like to connect with people who have done it, learn from their mistakes and successes. I think that has cultivated my ability to network and create these strategic relationships. It’s really ingrained in me from my upbringing and how I transitioned through life.

Jonny Nastor: Nice. You said you knew from an early age how to be coachable. I’ve never heard that before. There’s endless stuff out there, books, everything, about how to be a better coach. But here when you said it, I was like, “Wow, most people don’t even know how to be coachable.” Is that the ability not to be shy to ask questions, to not know what you’re doing, and to be willing to open up to your coach? What makes you coachable? I love that — how to be coachable.

Taking the Steps Necessary to Being Coachable

Jordan Bryant: Yeah, great question. I’ve never had anyone ask me that before. I think it comes down to just listening, being able to listen, and putting the ego aside. A lot of people like to say they know how to do things. Just to be able to be humble and learn is really important to being coachable, being able to put the ego aside.

One of the biggest things in communication is just listening. It’s tough for people to listen, even though, yes, you’ve got two ears and one mouth and all that. But listening is a hard thing to do because you have to just sit and be patient. That’s the biggest piece to being coachable.

Jonny Nastor: Nice, I like it. You mentioned pre-med at some point. Now, let’s go back. There seems to be this time in every entrepreneur’s life. They realize one of two things. Either they have this calling to make something big in the world and a difference, or as mostly seems to be the case, they find they simply cannot work for somebody else. Somehow pre-med’s probably going to fit into this, but, Jordan, can you take us back, tell us how this happened, and which side of the fence you fall on?

Jordan Bryant: Man, I really think I’m on both sides of the fence. Just being an athlete, I’m very competitive. It’s hard for me to listen to authority. I want to just follow in line, but then at the same time, with pre-med, I saw the opportunity to make an impact and to help others. It was the best of both worlds. I wanted to create my own practices, run my own business of sort for physical therapy to where I could have the best of both worlds.

As I got into pre-med, I just lost passion for it. It was cool to learn how and why things worked, but they put you in this path. You have to conform to the way that the process works in school, and I just saw a long path of it. I got through college. Then I had another eight years to specialize in.

I was also learning the business because I wanted to do my own thing. I was a business minor. Then in minoring in business and taking this business internships, I just started my own business. When I was 19 years old, I started a paint company from my hometown. My dad’s side of the family was deep in the community and the blue-collar industry really, so it was easy for me to take on that role.

That’s my first business venture was this paint company started. I had never painted a house in my life and went door to door, knocked on about 1,000 doors before I gained my first paint job. I used these jobs to cash flow the business and learning how I can create from nothing — I literally went door to door with a flyer that I made on Word Docs. It was awesome. Never painted a house in my life.

Jonny Nastor: But you can make excellent flyers.

Jordan Bryant: Yeah, the flyer worked great. I learned to communicate and sell myself. I actually booked about $60,000 before ever touching a paint brush, and I used that to cash flow the business, hired 25 marketers, 30 painters, and ran a six-figure business as a 19 year old first time ever trying business. That really showed me value exchange, being able to work with these clients, being able to understand what pain point was, and being able to provide a .

It showed me that there’s ways that I could help people in other areas. Yes, it might not be saving someone’s life, but it showed me that there’s other ways that I can create value. That’s what got me down the path of entrepreneurship and wanting to make an impact in a bigger way — understanding that there are other ways to do that and that I can run my business, be on my own, independent in other ways, too. It was the mix of my college experience and the different things that I tried that lead me to where I am right now.

Jonny Nastor: I find it interesting. I’m going to repeat this back to you. At the beginning, you said that your family was entrenched in the blue-collar community, so starting a paint company was really easy for you. Then right after that, you said you created a flyer and literally knocked on 1,000 doors — completely not easy. This was not handed to you in any way. Most people would never step up and knock on 100 doors or 10 doors even. You know what I mean? I like how you say that it was easy for you because your family, but then it’s like, “No, I worked my ass off, man.”

Jordan Bryant: Oh, yeah.

Jonny Nastor: “That’s how I did it.”

Jordan Bryant: It was not fun. I had so many doors slammed in my face. You almost have to trick your mind to see it as being something that is rewarding. There is definitely being able to hold your composure at the door and all the communication experience that you get. You have to find those positives in these negative experiences, but yes, it definitely was challenging at times and very rewarding. I can definitely point a lot of my social skills to the experience of knocking on doors and being rejected over and over and over again.

Jonny Nastor: Yeah, exactly. What made you not stay in offline, physical business like painting? What made you want to move online?

Jordan Bryant: Painting is not sexy at all. I was trying to get out of that as quick as possible. I was 19 at the time, and by the time I got out, I was 21. It’s hard to go to a party and talk to girls and say, “Yes, I run a paint business.” It didn’t quite pan out for me. I took the experience and the success there and tried in the travel industry. I took the same and tried to translate it over into a different industry, and it was a big failure.

I learned a lot there. I was just trying my learnings in these different industries. I tried travel industry for a little while. I tried to create a concierge service, a hiring concierge service, built the whole company from the ground up, did not start with sales this time, and built an awesome brand, built a whole team, learned the legality of starting a business from the ground up, and pretty much built an awesome company without sales. That was the biggest learning lesson.

I had so much success in sales with painting that I’d never painted a house in my life that I attributed all this success to my ability to sell myself and then figured that, “Hey, that’s not a problem. I’ll put that on the back burner. Once I get this company up and going, that’s something I can then almost turn on like a light switch,” and that was not the case. It did not validate the concept to the level I needed to. That was a big learning lesson for me.

Then, as I got connected with more mentors, networking, and understanding where some of the opportunities are in the world, technology’s something that captivated me. I started pursuing that and started a digital agency that it then pivoted to what is now at Chamber D.S. That’s how I was just dabbling while I was still young and had the opportunity to. Now that life is real, I’ve hunkered down into what I’m doing now.

Jonny Nastor: Excellent. That’s a great transition. I love how you do one thing really well. It goes really well the first time, so you just attribute it to sometimes the wrong things for the success. Like, “It’s this variable.” Then you find out later when you try it again. It’s like, “Actually, no, it was probably multiple variables not just this one specific.” You have to find that by trial and error. That’s how it works.

Jordan Bryant: Yes.

Jonny Nastor: You have the ability to create strategic relationships and be coachable. That’s your one thing that you think has been attributed to your success. Now, every blog post and expert talks about 80/20. Do 20 percent of the work. Get 80 percent of the result. Do what you’re good at. Delegate the rest. Jordan, can you please tell me something that you totally are not good at in business?

How to Master Task Delegation and When to Delegate

Jordan Bryant: Oh, that I’m not good at in business? Man, that’s tough. I try to focus on the things that you are good at. That I’m not good at in business. I can’t do it all. I would say I’m not very good at production management. I don’t want to do that. I love relationships, and I love communicating and networking. That’s just where I focus all my time.

I would say focusing on the finances and the logistics of everything. It just doesn’t sound like fun, so I don’t do it. I’m probably not very good at because it doesn’t sound like fun. That’s one thing that I absolutely delegate every time. I try to get a production manager in place, someone that can take over the running of the company.

Yes, as CEO, I have to have an understanding of every facet of it, so I do, seeing how everything works. As far as getting into the machine and making sure that it operates smoothly, that is something that I do stay away from. I would say, yes, having the understanding of managing the finances playing into the decisions on a day-to-day basis for production is something that I’m just not good at, have a passion for, or ever want to get into.

Jonny Nastor: Just completely keep it away from that.

Jordan Bryant: Exactly.

Jonny Nastor: From the paint business to the travel business to Chamber D.S., at what point did you finally realize to yourself, be like, “Oh, wow, Jordan, you’re terrible at this production side. You really have to get somebody else to do it.” I find that, typically, these things that we realize after the fact that we’re really, really bad at, we don’t want to admit it to ourselves at the beginning or sometimes in the middle even. It takes us a while. So when was this that you finally decided to put somebody in place to do that for you?

Jordan Bryant: I would say honestly probably recently, about five months ago. Our company’s just been scaling and can’t even keep up. It came to the point where we have 12 guys now, and it just became too much to manage. As we’re still growing, I felt like my life was stressful. I wasn’t enjoying the day-to-day outside of the business.

It was a point of scale, I believe, for us. There was just looking at all of the projects that we had on the table, where each one of them was, where it had to go, and the type of decisions that had to be made, but then that was only partial of what I had on the plate. Then, I also am managing with our accountant and with our attorney to make sure all this stuff is in line. I just had so much on the plate that, really, a lot of the stress was coming from that.

That is the 80/20 rule. That was 20 percent of what was on my plate that was causing 99 percent of my anxiety. I was like, “All right, this has got to go. I need to put someone in place now so that I can focus on this other stuff, and this other stuff can be more fulfilling for me because I love to learn. These are the areas that I want to learn in, and I could care less if I learn anything else in this piece.” That’s about five or six months ago. That’s when I said, “All right, we need to start making moves to have someone that can specialize in this and take this off my plate.”

Jonny Nastor: Nice. That’s awesome. Very cool. So huge growth — you’re up to 12 people. You’re pivoting here and there, trying to obviously grow. You mentioned projects and where you want to go. I would love to know right now, Jordan, how is it that you decide? A ‘project’ is very loose term obviously. It can be either the direction of a business or just a new venture you want to go into within it, but how do you decide? Is there a process you go through right now to decide whether a project is something you should put the resources into right now or whether it’s just a distraction?

Deciding Whether a Project Is Cool or Not

Jordan Bryant: Oh, that’s a great question. Really, the marketing dictates where we go. They kind of push us in the direction. It’s the analogy I like to use. They push us in the way that we need to be going. We deal with so many different projects in the mobile tech industry that could really be used in any industry. Every company needs some sort of technology advancement, R&D for the future.

It used to be, if you didn’t have a website, your business couldn’t be found. Now, it’s getting to the point to where this is the first year that mobile bypassed desktop. It’s getting to the point where now, if you don’t have a mobile presence, you’re not going to be found. Everyone finds businesses through their phone.

We get so many inquiries from so many different verticals and so many different industries that, for us, it’s, “Is a project cool?” We are trying to transition to be a mobile innovation agency to where we’re working on the cutting edge stuff. Wearable technology and augmented reality are going to be a massive sector. These are the things that fascinate us. We really just qualify a project to if it’s something that is innovative, if it’s a cool unique idea I guess is what we look for.

Jonny Nastor: That’s cool. Then when we decide to go into, “Is a project cool?” — I get it because lots of it’s probably a gut feeling, or this feels like the right way to go. Then what I’ve realized now is that one of our greatest fears as human beings, as entrepreneurs is the fear of being wrong and making a mistake. Now, you are in control of a company with 12 people working behind you. You pay their bills for them, right?

Jordan Bryant: Yeah.

Jonny Nastor: So there’s a responsibility there. You decide a project is cool. How do you deal with just being wrong when that cool project actually was something that we should not have gone into, we spend a whole bunch of time, money, and resources on it? It’s a new company. It’s growing. You can only do so many of these failures before that’s it. How do you take that responsibility and not have it sideswipe you for a day or two, a week, or a month?

How to Minimize Failure by Developing and Relying on Processes

Jordan Bryant: There’s definitely a lot more qualifying than, “Hey, is your idea cool or not?” The way that our process is laid out, it really alleviates a lot of that liability, which is really cool. We have this initial phase where we work with the client for a period of two to four weeks to pretty much vet the idea.

One of the value props that we have is market research and concept validation. We go through this initial period as almost a standalone project to determine what the risk is of the concept. From there, once we’ve gone through that period, we’re able to then get into the full project. This has just evolved just from what you said, from wanting to avoid some of these massive failures and sinking too many resources into something.

That is definitely a process that we rely on to do that. Then also to speak to leadership, you have to fail. Our guys know that. Our guys know that it’s hard to learn without failure. Some of the best learnings are within failures. They trust me to fail in the right way. I just hope to put the systems and processes in place to make the failures minimal. But, yeah, we definitely rely on process so that not a lot of it is from the gut. It’s going through a system checking boxes to make sure that, when we enter into something, it’s going to be a success.

Jonny Nastor: Excellent. Excellent clarification. I love it. All right, Jordan, we’re going to wrap up on something I’m calling the ‘entrepreneurial gap.’ You’re 25 years old now. You have a giant long career ahead of you still.

Jordan Bryant: I hope so.

Jonny Nastor: But something that we deal with as entrepreneurs is we are always looking and pushing forward. We’re setting goals one week, two weeks, a month, three months, six months, a year, five years out. We’re always, “When this happens in my business in six months, everything will be good. When this happens … ”

Before we even get to those goals, we set five or 10 loftier ones into the future. It’s always, “I’ll be happy, I’ll be successful, I’ll be ‘this’ when my business gets there.” But we oftentimes fail to stop, turn around, look at what we have accomplished, what we’ve come through, and what we’ve learned.

I would love you, Jordan, right now to stop, turn around. Your career hasn’t been that long at this point, but you’ve probably learned a ton and been through a lot. I would love to just hear what you feel about what it is you have come through at this point.

Emus, the Passion for Learning, and Words to Live By from Ralph Waldo Emerson

Jordan Bryant: Wow, that’s a deep question, Jon. To speak to goals, I’m a huge proponent of goals. I have systems in place so that I can have these reflective periods on a weekly, bi-monthly, yearly — and I have five-year goal as well — periods of time so that none of us, as a team, lose sight of personal goals, career goals, and so forth. This is something that I think every entrepreneur should absolutely do is reflect.

As far as myself just reflecting on the ability to learn and making sure that my ego is in check, being that I am an athlete and I’m very competitive, it’s really easy for me to just alpha male, take over, and want to do it my way. Just what I found in my experience, even though, yes, I am young, I’ve been in entrepreneur ventures since I was born, ever since I was born on an emu ranch — my parents first venture — and just learning.

Really, what I always reflect on is just keeping myself in check and making sure that I am listening to everybody because everyone has something to offer. One thing that I hold dear, I have tattooed on my body actually, Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Every man that I meet is my superior in some way, and in that I learn from him.” That’s just is in line with the passion for learning. When I reflect and look back, I just make sure that I’m learning from everybody and that everyone has a voice. That’s really what I hold dear and keep myself in check on.

Jonny Nastor: That’s awesome. I love it, man. Jordan, this has been a lot of fun. I do thank you so much for stopping by. We’ve got to talk about your business in passing, but could you specifically tell the listener where they can go find out more about you and your business?

Jordan Bryant: Yeah, definitely. Our website ChamberDS.com. I actually had my team put together a toolkit for your listeners that’s free.

Jonny Nastor: Oh nice.

Jordan Bryant: Chamberds.com/Hack. What it is, it’s the five things that most people don’t know about mobile that can help you get started with your first mobile app concept, how to get started, and how to eliminate a lot of cost. We put that together for you guys.

What we do is our typical client comes to us with just an idea on paper, and we go through market research, help validate the concept. We get wire frames, and we go through design, development, deploy, to the store, support it, and even market it. We help ideas come to fruition and really create a sustainable, complete app business. Our focus is on and profit all the way through, so that’s typically what we do. We’re an end-to-end mobile innovation agency.

Jonny Nastor: I love it. Are you on Twitter?

Jordan Bryant: I am on Twitter, yes, @ChamberDS. You can find us there. I will definitely shoot you some links as well for show notes purposes.

Jonny Nastor: Excellent.

Jordan Bryant: Find me on LinkedIn. I’m all over LinkedIn. LinkedIn/in/jordanbryant1. You can reach me there. Through our website, [email protected] Yeah, feel free to reach out. I’m happy to just be a mobile resource for anybody that has questions.

Jonny Nastor: Excellent. Yes, I will link to the ChamberDS.com/Hack. I’ll link to their Twitter, their LinkedIn, and any other links that Jordan sends me for the show notes, so they’re easy for you to find. Reach out to Jordan. Ask him any questions you have or have had about apps.

Jordan, thank you so much again. I appreciate you taking the time to stop by today, and please keep doing what you’re doing, man, because it’s really awesome to watch.

Jordan Bryant: Hey, Jon, yeah, thank you so much. I want to keep in touch with you, and I have my own podcast. Happy to be a resource for anybody, and I’m excited where the entrepreneurship journey is going.

Jonny Nastor: Exactly, thank you. Jordan, thank you so much for your time and for the really, really interesting, fun, and somewhat brilliant conversation. So ChamberDS.com is his business, but ChamberDS.com/Hack is the special page just for you, Hack the Entrepreneur listener. Please, Jordan, has created something very, very cool that he would love for you to have. Please go there, ChamberDS.com/Hack, and it’s just for you.

We had this great conversation. It lasted about 25 minutes. Jordan, he really, really, really impressed me. I thought maybe we were going to talk about apps. I don’t understand apps. I love playing with apps on my phone. But he understands it as a business. He understands sales and building this business around apps or just around a market that is willing to pay you money in exchange for the value you’ve created. It doesn’t really matter what the business is. I love that about Jordan and the way this conversation went.

But I had to go back through it. I had six things written down, that thing that he says, but then, as I went through, it was the second one. It was the second one that I had marked down. Not the first, not the third, not the fourth, not the fifth, and not the sixth, but the second one. Is it the same one you got? Did you get it? Did you hear it? Let’s do it. Let’s find the hack.

Jordan Bryant: It was not fun. I had so many doors slammed in my face. You almost have to trick your mind to see it as being something that is rewarding. There is definitely being able to hold your composure at the door and all the communication experience that you get. You have to find those positives in these negative experiences, but yes, it definitely was challenging at times and very rewarding. I can definitely point a lot of my social skills to the experience of knocking on doors and being rejected over and over and over again.

Jonny Nastor: And that’s the hack.

Yes, yes, yes, Jordan. Lots of us, actually, don’t feel that we are that good at sales. I love sales. I love the idea of getting somebody to come over to my side of either an argument or me actually physically selling something. I love the discussion and the negotiation that’s involved in that transaction. But this goes beyond this.

Jordan knocked on 1,000 doors, and lots of his social skills and just his ability to take failures from 1,000 people saying no to you in your face and just brushing it off, it’s a hard thing to do. It’s not easy. This takes a lot of practice. This takes a lot of hard work and being willing to do that, but it’s essential as entrepreneurs that we learn.

Maybe you don’t want to learn the sales, and maybe you just will stubbornly stay away from it. I strongly advise you to learn some sales because it is good for you to know. It’s not just about the used car salesman in a fancy suit. It’s literally getting your employees to do things, getting your family to agree to things and do things that you want to do.

This is all sales. This all negotiation. These are important things. But it goes beyond that. Sales — like knocking on doors — it’s a numbers game. What’s the best way to start a successful business? Start 10 businesses. Not all at once, but that’s the idea. It takes 10 businesses probably before you will have a successful business. It’s just the way it works. Some of these things involve numbers, involve trying and trying and trying and trying and trying and not quitting. That’s what sales is door to door. That’s what sales is in general. That’s what business is.

I love this, Jordan, that you have internalized this from a young age. Now, you are taking it places way beyond knocking on doors, and it’s leading you to amazing places. I just hope that you out there will internalize this. Don’t get a job necessarily selling door to door because that sounds really terrible, but use this — the fact of just having rejection, having things not work out the way they’re supposed, have things be wrong, have mistakes be made, and just be willing to make a ton of them in the process of doing really cool, big, meaningful things. Thank you, Jordan. That was awesome.

All right. Thank you very much. This has been great. Chamberds.com/Hack is that special gift just for you, Jordan would love you to have.

Please, if you haven’t, check out the site HacktheEntrepreneur.com as well while you’re at it. You’ve probably been there. It looks great. We’re just starting some cool stuff over there. You should try it out.

Get on the email list. It’d be great to have you. That gives you direct access to me and my email inbox. From the first email, you can hit reply to anything, and it comes straight to me. I’d love to hear from you. That’s easy to find. HacktheEntrepreneur.com, you’ll see the place to put your email in right at the top.

It’s been fun. I thank you, thank you, thank you so much for joining me again today. Please, until next time, keep hacking the entrepreneur.





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