16. How Do Entrepreneurs Make The World A Better Place?

Businessmen and women play a unique role in our society. By solving problems, creating useful products and services, and creating jobs, entrepreneurs help make our whole world a better place.

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Terms

  • Entrepreneur: A person who takes risks and starts businesses that create value and solve problems for consumers. 

 

This is the transcript of our conversation: 

Connor: Hey Brittany.

Brittany: Hey Connor.

Connor: So I’ve got a proposition for you. I think that our world is a better place because of entrepreneurs, but I wanna understand a little bit more with our listeners and unpack why. So I’m guessing you agree. Yes. That entrepreneurship makes the world a better place. Let’s start at a high level. Why do you think that is we, talked in a past episode for kids about how to learn to be entrepreneurs and how the profit motive can make them excited to make money and learn the different aspects of business. But what is it about entrepreneurship that really makes our world a better place?

Brittany: Yeah, I think, well, one entrepreneurship makes the world go round. So you have somebody who looks at the world and says, there’s a problem I can solve, or there’s a way I can make your life better or there’s a product I can invent that will make something easier. And that makes you, and I happy right as the consumers, we buy these products and we think our life is so much better. But then with the money that, business owner, that entrepreneur earns, what does he do with that money? Or she do with that

money, they can put that into other things, right,

Connor: Right.

Brittany: Not just products or companies they can, but maybe they can create another company, make jobs for people. So there’s so much that, this small step of being an entrepreneur can do that just makes the world better. That I just kind of stand in. Awe of it’s amazing to me,

Connor: You know one thing that you were just saying got me thinking, imagine if I’m an entrepreneur and I get everyone to pay me, let’s say $10 for a little widget, a little, you know

Brittany: Whatever it is, a toy.

Connor: Yeah. And so, and you know, a million people buy my toy. So now I’ve got $10 million now I’m having to, you know, pay for the costs of the toy and pay the shipping and pay all other things. Yeah. And, let’s not talk,

Brittany: We’ll get into that in another episode.

Connor: So, yeah, I, but, but 10 million is how much money was sent to me initially. Right. And so let’s say after all of my expenses, let’s say I have just a million dollars. Right. So I, now have a profit of a million dollars. Well, why is that important? You just mentioned that, you know, one person can kind of get all that money and then what do they do with it? Right. So when I have a million dollars, I can now make a significant difference. Maybe I, pay like a researcher to kind of come up with a new way to do things that makes people’s lives better. Maybe I pay a couple people where their whole job is to go out and find solutions to problems. And, because of that money that I’ve accumulated, I now have the ability to make some big change. But here’s the question, here’s what you got me thinking about. If I hadn’t done any of that, I hadn’t sold my toy. Everyone would have 10 more dollars, but so not only would they not have a toy, so maybe they’d be a little sadder cuz they don’t have their amazing toy made by Conor, but also $10 won’t really do anything, right?

Brittany: Not its own. No.

Connor: Yeah. They can’t really make any change or, figure out how to invest in anything or pay anyone to go research things. Right. When, the little bits of money are distributed and everyone just has what they have, then you can’t really pool those resources together into one person or one company where they can more deeply and more significantly invest in something. So what I like about entrepreneurship is as people succeed and accumulate money, it’s almost like they can spin that success into something else. For example, the one that comes to mind and I’m more interested maybe in a minute, we can talk about some more, less common entrepreneurs that I think often have like really cool stories. But we’ve talked before about Elon Musk, he’s kinda the, Tony Stark.

Brittany: He’s the one Yep. Right.

Connor: Of our world that people think about, well, what happened? He, made some money early on with PayPal. He was one of the founders. And so he succeeded in, you know, that initial business and it sold to another company. So now he got a bunch of money, which again, like I was just saying, he could now invest. And he, you know, now he’s with Tesla and he is with what’s the space one

Brittany: Space X.

Connor: Right. And he is able to invest those resources and build some amazing companies. And if you go ask a Tesla owner, right. Or if you go ask one of the people working at space X, they will say, this is amazing.

Brittany:Yeah.

Connor: We are doing things that we never would’ve been able to do without that investment. And, had PayPal never started. And, people $10 at a time, $5 at a time, you know, given little bits of money that company would never have grown. And he would’ve never have been able to build up those resources to then go make a big difference. So I think that’s one cool thing about entrepreneurship is not only are you serving a lot of people, but if you’re successful, you can then even be more successful and help even more people. It’s like a cycle almost

Brittany: Not only that, but you can take that money and put it into not even put it into, but go to a store and buy something else. But you’re actually helping other people because as you have more money that you can use,

Connor: Right,

Brittany: You can go to a local restaurant and maybe buy some tacos, right. Or something from a local, you know, local restaurant or, maybe you go to a kid’s business fair, which we talked on another episode and you’re helping those kids get started. So there’s so much that money can do. And all that stems from, like we said, solving a problem, building a business, you know, and becoming an entrepreneur.

Connor: So let’s maybe talk for a moment about a, less common entrepreneur or two. Are there any that you know about or anything that comes to mind? You know, Elon Musk is the easy example, but let’s talk about another example or two, what comes to mind For you?

Brittany: I have a friend named Mago Wade and she is phenomenal. She owns a skincare company and the skincare company is in Senegal, which is far, far away. That’s in. Where’s that even close to? I’m trying to think of any countries

Connor: Africa.

Brittany: Well, it’s in Africa.

Connor: That’s the easy thing.

Brittany: Yeah. That’s it’s in Africa. But what happened is she grew up in Senegal and it’s very poor, country. And she was watching a lot of her friends and, close people that she knew die because the only jobs were dangerous jobs on fishing boats. And so a lot of times these young boys, 12 to 14 would go out trying to make their fortunes and give money to their families, but they wouldn’t come home because there would be a storm on the sea. And so people were losing loved ones, but there were no other jobs. So instead of starting her company in Austin Texas, where she lives now, she took a risk and she did everything, started her business in Senegal. And now there’s, I think maybe 10 employees, it’s a small operation, but those 10 employees, I mean, I came time about getting chills, had been able to drastically change their lives. These are people who never really were going to make it. In fact, many of these women said they never thought they’d have jobs. They thought they would just be. And there’s nothing wrong with being a homemaker, right. Sitting home and making those and being a mom and being, being a wife. But they wanted, they wanted to do something else as well. And now, because Mago has brought this company there, she’s able to give these people kind of a second chance at life. So it’s not even just about you and I, as consumers saying, I love this product. It’s about the people who are working there.

Connor: That’s cool. One comes to mind for me is a gentleman by the name of Scott Paul. He lives in my state and we’ve chatted quite a bit before. And he’s had some success as an entrepreneur. And because like I was mentioning earlier because he’s been able to accumulate these resources. I remember when coronavirus was, kind of in the thick of things and everyone was freaking out and masks were getting hard to find, right. It’s one of the reasons why they, a lot of states I think probably most, if not all states shut down any medical procedures that were not like urgent, right? If you it was, if it wasn’t an emergency, why? Because they needed to save masks. They call it PPE, right? Personal Protective Equipment basically like masks and gloves to keep health workers safe so that they were wouldn’t get infected. And so Scott was able to very quickly pivot and, and partner with a couple people to build a mask company like, from scratch, they did this 3d, they figured out a 3d printer. That’s cool way of creating this mask. So it’s basically using like this plasticy kind of material that kind of fits form fits around your face and then has a, smaller hole almost like if you think of the bottom of Darth Vader’s mask

Brittany: Yep.

Connor: That’s literally what it looks like. In fact, they made a Darth Vader edition where they made it black. And, but if you think about on Darth Vader’s mask, there’s like this little box kind of area near the mouth and that’s how it was on their mask. Well, why did they do that? Because they recognize that if you, have a full mask it’s using that, kind of filter material, but it’s using a lot to kind of wrap all around your face. And they’re like, okay, if we have this big sheet, you know, that we have to cut out these little ovals, that people will then turn into masks on their faces. What if we cut out instead tiny little squares because the, hardest thing was to find was this filter material.

Brittany: Yeah.

Connor: That’s what actually filters out the germs. Right? And so they figured out if we can just cut out these little squares, instead, we can make way more masks out of these big sheets, amazing. And then help a lot of people. And so they created this design where that little square could kind of go in that box at the bottom. So you can still breathe and it still filters out. And then the rest of it is this 3d printed mask which you can put on. So they, they quickly got a design together. And when you’re an entrepreneur, you end up networking a lot of people. So you might remember in our show business book, one of the questions for the twins and their family was who’s in your network, who do you know, that could help you get this done? And a good entrepreneur is always networking. You’re always trying to figure out who can help you. Who can I help? Let’s help one another. And so Scott, as an entrepreneur knew a lot of people just like Mago knows a lot of people and you’re able to kind of figure out, Hey, I need to figure out, you know, people who would wanna buy a hundred thousand masks at a time so that we can quickly sell a lot of these and get more money so that we can do even more masks. And so Scott was able to just very quickly put together this company, that, again, we’ve talked so often about this, that the free market is all about service, you know, in a time of need Scott and his associates is the people in this company were able to just very quickly serve a lot of people who needed these masks because they wanted to protect themselves and how cool that is to be able to very quickly respond to a need like that. You see a problem. And then you, know, here’s a, true entrepreneur, right? Cause Scott immediately saw the problem. And what was he thinking about? How can we come up with a solution? How can we solve this problem? And along the way, yeah. You make money. Why? Because people who are suffering that problem are like, oh my gosh, thank you. You’re serving me so here’s money.

Brittany: Exactly.

Connor: And then it sets him up for success in the next time he wants to go solve a problem. It’s pretty cool.

Brittany: It is pretty cool. And you reminded me of one of my other favorite entrepreneursNate guy by the name of Richard Branson. Who’s quite a character. Okay. but he started an airline and the reason he started the airline always makes me laugh. This is one of my favorite stories. We’ve all been at airports, waiting for flights. It’s very frustrating. Sometimes when our flight gets delayed or flight gets canceled, well, Richard Branson was trying to go home to see his girlfriend. He was pretty young. I think he was under 25. So pretty young guy. But the flight got canceled and he had promised her that he would be home. And so she’s, you know, he’s trying to call her saying, I’m not gonna be there. And she’s like, you promise me, you’d be here. So he thinks, okay, what am I gonna do? Well, he had some money saved cuz he had another smaller company before, not a whole lot, but he had enough where he could rent his own airplane. So he went in the same airport, he rented an airplane, but then he went back to everybody waiting who was on his flight and who had their flight cancel. And he said, Hey, I will get you there for half the price, you know, buy this ticket. Wow. And we’re gonna make this a great experience. And that was actually what he wanted to do. So when he started his own airline, Virgin airlines, he wanted to make it a different experience. No one likes flying. Especially we talked about this in another episode, right. Once the TSA right. And all that. Right. But he wanted to make it a really enjoyable experience. And so it all started with him being really irritated that his flight was canceled. But instead of sitting there, he didn’t wanna just deal with, that. Right. He wanted to fix the problem. He, wanted to solve it. And so he did, he made his own airline and it started that day.

Connor:That’s cool. And I think that’s really the answer to the, question for our discussion today is, you know, why, is the world a better place because of entrepreneurship? Well, very simply. It’s what you and I have been talking about. It’s because entrepreneurs are problem solvers. Yeah. And all the problems we have in life, like I don’t know how to grow lettuce, you know, like, or I don’t know how to raise this or

Brittany: Use tools. We’ve talked about that In other episodes.

Connor: I dunno How to use tools. I wanna hire a handyman literally. Okay. Let’s talk about that. Brittany we have in our house, we have a banister and the, it has two little anchors to hold it into the wall. And one of the anchors kind of chipped or split

Brittany: These are on your stairs.

Connor: Yes. Yeah. Going up and down the stairs. And and so it was kind of wobbly. It would kind of come off the wall, not horribly. So, but enough where we’ve told the kids don’t put any weight on the banister because we don’t want it to like snap off or do anything. Well, what does that mean? That means the banister was nothing more than like wall decoration. Right? you can’t use it to like hold onto, which is the whole point of the banister. And and it wasn’t a safety thing cuz you know, if you’re an older person, maybe you really need to hold onto a banister for, safety reasons to keep you stable. The little kids don’t need to they’re, you know, running up and down the

Brittany:Stairs. And even if they fall down, they get right back up.

Connor :Exactly. So, it wasn’t like a pressing concern, but that banister sat there for like two years. Right. And we knew it needed to be fixed and I have no clue. I mean, all you need to do is go buy it, figure out the right one to buy it. But I’m not a handyman. I’m not, I’m good with computers and ideas and all kinds of other stuff. I am not good when it comes to tools. And soI had a problem. We, had a problem and that problem was solved because here’s this entrepreneurial handyman. Who’s like, Hey, I’ll come to your house, I’ll fix whatever you need. And I’m like, oh man, you’re serving me, take my money. Right. I, don’t have to do this anymore. So that’s what I really like about entrepreneurship is they’re making the world better because they see the problems that are happening. Right. And they go about fixing them. And so that what what’s funny about, there’s another entrepreneur about or Steve jobs, right.

Brittany: He is the best Yeah.

Connor: Started apple and, there’s a lot of interesting stories about him but what I really liked is he had the different approach is not only was he solving people’s problems, he kind of took the approach that I’m solving problems, that people don’t even realize they have

Brittany: The iPhone who, Knew needed an IPhone and now I can’t Live without it.

Connor: Now you can’t live without it. And so his job is he saw it as an entrepreneur was to be thinking about how can I make people’s lives better in ways that they can’t even imagine. Right. And, why, what allowed him have it? Well, he had had some success and he had been able to build the company to a point where they could spend time just sitting around thinking up ideas. You know, it, wasn’t that they had to like work, you know, 9 to 5 and every day, or just kind of having a hustle. They had had enough success, which allowed them kind of a the breathing room, right. To take some time and think through how can we innovate? How can we make the world a better place in ways that other people don’t even realize that they need? How can we come up with this iPod? You know, portable music player. I mean, let’s date ourselves here, Brittany, when you were in high school, what was the music player that you had and used?

Brittany: I Had a Discman, which you probably wouldn’t even know what that is the for people listening, but that was a portable CD player, which wasn’t that portable?

Connor: What are CDs?

Brittany: What Are CDs?

Connor: And it wasn’t portable cuz you’d shake it.

Brittany: And it, Was huge. It was so big. It was probably the size of both your hands put together and I’m thinking about it. It was not a small thing.

Connor: Adult hands put together

Brittany: Hands. Yeah. Adult hands. And I remember the first kid I knew I was a senior in high school. I saw this kid come to class with this small little rectangle. And I remember thinking like, what does he think he’s gonna accomplish with that? Where, does the CD go? You know, and that was the first iPod I ever saw.

Connor: Oh wow. And, it’s really fun. You can go on YouTube and find the first iPod commercial, where they started to show people how. And so this, guy, you know, and he is doing the music on his computer and his, you know, whatever. And, and then he downloads the song onto his iPod. He plugs in his headphones and walks out the door. And for those of us seen the commercial at the time, we’re like, oh my gosh, like all this is huge. All those songs. And I think, I don’t know what it was at the time. Its like a Thousand.

Brittany:  It wasn’t like very many.

Connor: Yeah.

Brittany: I don’t think it was even a thousand.

Connor: Yeah. Its like 500 songs or who knows what? Right. And, that was, but it was amazing. Right? Yeah. So here’s Steve jobs thinking like yeah. People have been using before the Discman it was the Walkman

Brittany: Walkman I had in high school.

Connor: For me, it was the Walkman, it was cassette tapes. And then later it was the Disman. I thought I was really cool by the way I would have my yellow headphones and my disc.

Brittany:

Was it clipped onto your Belt?

Connor: I didn’t clip it. No. I would put it, I would put it in my backpack and have the, headphones people going back to my backpack. But I had to always, you know, walk pretty slowly cuz if you jostled the, the backpack too much and the, the CD starts to skip which is just hilarious. Cuz these are terms that kid the adults, listen, they’re laughing and they’re like, you know, the good old days and the kids are like, what are you? People are old. You’re best and you, and I don’t feel that old. Right. It’s weird. But anyways, the point is that here’s Steve jobs and other entrepreneurs like them. They’re looking at how can we make people’s life? I would’ve been content with a Discman for a very long time using,

Brittany: Cause you didn’t Know any Better.

Connor: I didn’t know any better. Right. CDs are just the way it was. I had a whole CD collection. I remember when I would get in my car, I was like a 16, 17 year old. I would’ve this big thick binder right. Of CDs, like forward to a page and you’d flip it over and look through all your music and pick the album. You wanted put it in the CD player. Right. And and I didn’t know any better life was great. I had a big binder full of all my favorite music. I could burn CDs. Right. You could like make your own, you would download songs on

Brittany: Make not mixed tapes, but mix CDs. Yeah.

Connor: Mix CDs I guess. And download off a Napster and stuff like that. Right. Anyways, this is fun reminiscing. But the point here is that we didn’t even know that life could be better with an iPod or an iPhone. And yet it was entrepreneurs thinking up ways to make my life better in ways that I couldn’t even imagine they’re they’re serving me by thinking of how to make my life better. Like how cool is it that there are people out there whose whole job it is, is to figure out how to solve my problems and sometimes problems. I don’t even have. I just think that’s super fun.

Brittany: That’s really cool.

Connor: All right guys. Well, we’ll leave it there. Make sure you are subscribed. Share this online. If you like what you’re listening to. Let’s get even more listeners. And so make sure you’re sharing the way the world works with all your favorite friends. And we’ll see on the next episode, Brittany, I’ll see you later.

Brittany: See you next time, Bye

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