53: 5 Benefits of Community for the Entrepreneur

Podcast – Show Notes

53: 5 Benefits of Community for the EntrepreneurHave you ever felt alone in the fight?  As Entrepreneurs, it is easy to get so busy and focused on our goals that we don’t cultivate relationship.
The result is a lonely, vulnerable place.  If you choose to stay in that place, you will find your success and impact limited.
[Tweet “”You find your calling when you find your family” – @caleb_campbell“]
However, you have a choice.  You can take action, invest in relationships and change your destiny.
Here is what Solomon had to say about community.
“This is the case of a man who is all alone, without a child or a brother, yet who works hard to gain as much wealth as he can. But then he asks himself, “Who am I working for? Why am I giving up so much pleasure now?” It is all so meaningless and depressing. Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble. Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone? A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.”

5 Benefits of Community to the Entrepreneur

  1. Someone to share success with
  2. Help when you fall
  3. Keep your hope in face of opposition
  4. Conquer the enemy
  5. Makes you stronger

Complete Show Notes with Clickable Links at

50: Podcast Show Update 2 & Our Saturday Small Business Journey

Good Morning!
On today’s podcast I give a little bit of an update on my thoughts for the podcast as we go forward.  And, I share with you about our Families Saturday journey through the small business landscape of Nelson County, Virginia.
We had an awesome day! It was so much fun and we saw some great places, and met some great people.  (I shared some videos along the way on Facebook)
Here are some of the places that we stopped.
The Batesville Market – Batesville, VA
Nelson Farmers Market – Nellysford, VA
North Garden Equestrian Center – North Garden, VA
Bonus 🙂
Sweet Streets Ice Cream Truck – Stuarts Draft, VA (My Friends New Business)
Family Businesses we purchased from…
Ula Tortilla – Nelson Co. VA
Double H Farm – Nelson Co. VA
Miller Bake Shoppe – Stuarts Draft, VA
I encourage you to take your own local small business journey… and let me know what great places that you find.

We found these at the farmers market

Entrance to the Nelson County Farmers Market on a beautiful day!

We had lunch at the Batesville Market in Batesville, VA


38: Building a Business as a Married Team w/ LaShonda Delivuk

EP. 38Today’s guest is LaShonda Delivuk of Life Focus Pictures.
“Life Focus Pictures specializes in television commercials, educational DVDs (in both English & Spanish), and web videos for YouTube & website homepages.
From the very beginning, the mission of Life Focus was to provide its clients with exceptional customer service while producing video content with a high-end cinematic aesthetic.  Our goal is to bring national-quality material to businesses both small and large.  In 2013, Life Focus Pictures received a nomination for the 2013 Emerging Small Business Award through the Bedford Area Chamber of Commerce as well as a nomination for a Small Business Award through the Lynchburg Regional Chamber of Commerce.  Since 2011, LFP has served over 70 businesses nationwide producing video content for all needs ranging from broadcast commercials to vision videos for non-profits.
Life Focus Pictures strives to not only produce quality work but have a positive impact on the community in which they live. They are active members of the Lynchburg Morning Rotary Club & the Lynchburg Regional Chamber of Commerce (CHAT Team & Minority/Women Owned Task Force). They volunteer their time helping non-profits and also speak to young entrepreneurs, middle & high school students.”

Biblical Entrepreneurship

“When the ground soaks up the falling rain and bears a good crop for the farmer, it has God’s blessing. But if a field bears thorns and thistles, it is useless. The farmer will soon condemn that field and burn it.” ~ Hebrews 6:7-8

Key Takeaways

  • It’s a great ideas to have a Financial Adviser when first starting off.
  • When you are forced to make something work, you tend to become more creative.
  • Don’t make assumptions about your community. Get to know your community and how it works. 
  • Make sure that you are constantly giving back to your community; thanking them for supporting you.
  • Sometimes we have a scarcity mindset instead of an abundance mindset.
  • Different is scary, but different can be a good thing.
  • Never get too attached to your own ideas.
  • John 15:5

Tweetable Quotes

  • [Tweet “Don’t make assumptions about your community. Get to know your community and how it works. “]
  • [Tweet “When you are forced to make something work, you tend to become more creative.”]
  • [Tweet “Make sure that you are constantly giving back to your community; thanking them for supporting you.”]
  • [Tweet “Sometimes we have a scarcity mindset instead of an abundance mindset.”]
  • [Tweet “Different is scary, but different can be a good thing.”]
  • [Tweet “Never get too attached to your own ideas.”]


For complete show notes and clickable links go to

21: Success Through Collaboration w/ Lynne Breeden

EP. 21Today’s guest is Lynne Breeden of LTD 7 from Staunton, VA.
“Lynne Breeden’s Stunton, Va., based store has the feel of a well-executed painting brought to life by the hard work and experience of a creative visionary. Breeden opened LTD 7 on May 30, 2013, but indeed her retail history is storied and reaches back into her college days, working retail for the likes of The Limited, Lord and Taylor, and Casual Corner.
Although Breeden briefly tried her hand at banking, she soon returned to retail, helping other stores run their businesses and honing her skills in the process. In 2002 Breeden launched her first store, which specialized in dance apparel and gifts.
By 2008 she sold the store, which had gone through significant change in that time, and became a consultant for retailers seeking to enter the industry. But Breeden proved she couldn’t stay away from first-hand experience for too long as a self-describe “retail junkie” when she opened her latest and greatest concept in early 2013 to “live the dream,” as LTD stands for (“7” is a reference to the Breedens’ faith, as well as number of vendors they represent).”

Key Takeaways

  • When you start your business, to you as an owner it means the world to you. But to the world your a speck. They don’t know your there. So you must constantly remind them that your there. Make yourself known.
  • Social Media has a great influence in this day and age.
  • Consistency of Social Media. You have to be consistent.
  • Give your customers something of value. Such as a Relationship.
  • “You’ve got to give to get”
  • “Do what you do so well that they’ll want you to do it again and bring their friends.” ~ Walt Disney 

Tweetable Quotes

  • [Tweet “Social Media has a great influence in this day and age. @shopltd7”]
  • [Tweet “”You’ve got to give to get” @shopltd7″]
  • [Tweet “”Do what you do so well that they’ll want you to do it again and bring their friends.” ~ Walt Disney @shopltd7″]


For complete show notes and clickable links go to

You Don't Have to Leave Your Family to Go to Work!

How is that possible you ask?

For years, I did not think it was possible either.  I, just like most Americans, had been programmed to believe that the only way to earn a living was to get up everyday and “leave for work.”
Therefore, I did what I knew to do… I got a job and went to work.  Then I started my own business and functioned very much the same way. My work expanded to fit the “allotted work week” and my expenses expanded to meet what I could earn in that period of time.  The result, was a stretched thin life with no margin that resulted in me responding “busy” to anyone that asked “How are you doing?”
Family Business
I bet you have been there.  Most of us still are there.  However, this is a recent phenomenon.  For most of the history of the world people did not function this way.  They and their families worked together in “family businesses.”  Then, the industrial revolution needed people to work in the factories…  Schools were structured to prepare people for factory work and our routine changed.
In yesterday’s podcast, Tommy and I talked about Family Business, Homeschooling, and lifestyle.  As Tommy put it, “The Family is under attack!”  I believe it is possible to get off the rat-race and live differently.  Our family has committed to living simply, and working together to earn our living.  This lifestyle will provide us the margin to invest time and money in the things that really matter to us…. our relationships and making a difference in our community.
Making this a reality is not easy… even for us.  We recently made the hard decision for Victoria to put in her notice at Liberty University.  She is transitioning to join me in the business and build her own business The Simplified Office.   These decisions are hard, we prayed a lot, had peace about the decision, and have a plan… but there is still fear.
What if the business doesn’t grow?  What if the revenue doesn’t come in?  Were we crazy?   We have asked all these questions… but at the end of the day, we just know that it is worth it.
It is possible for you too.  Maybe your discouraged.  I pray that today you will see a spark of possibility that motivates you to move toward a better future.  It isn’t easy… but it is possible.  Others have done it before.
If you know someone else who needs this encouragement, please forward them this message and share the episode on social media.
Here’s to your Success!

14: Family Business, Home Schooling and Lifestyle w/ Tommy Stafford

EP. 14Today’s guest is Tommy Stafford, of Blue Ridge Life Magazine. 
Tommy, his wife Yvette and their two “junior editors” live in Nelson Co. Virginia.  They moved there to transition their careers from the news / journalism industry, to the type of lifestyle in which they wanted to raise their children. In that process they founded Nelson County Life Magazine which transitioned to Blue Ridge Life Magazine and just celebrated it’s 10 year anniversary.

Key Takeaways

  • Things don’t just happen. You have get up and go DO it. Long before anything big happens you have to start making the small steps to get there.
  • “Good things take a long time, great things happen all at once.”
  • You have to take a leap of faith.To get to places you want to be, your gonna have to do things you’ve never done before. In the end it’s well worth it.
  • Owning your own business, together with homeschooling, creates a freedom for the family that many people don’t think is possible.
  • It is possible to have your family together and growing together.

Tweetable Quotes

  • [Tweet “”Good things take a long time, great things happen all at once.” @BlueRidgeLife“]
  • [Tweet “”To get to places you want to be, your gonna have to do things you’ve never done before.” @BlueRidgeLife“]


For complete show notes and clickable links go to

05: Growing Inspite of Economic Challenges w/ Charles Hendricks

Podcast cover Template Charles HendricksToday’s Guest is Charles Hendricks architect at ‘The Gaines Group.”
“My name is Charles Hendricks and I am an architect, dad, and husband living in the Shenandoah Valley, Virginia. I design projects of all types and styles (residential, multi-family, office, commercial, industrial, new construction, renovation, modern, traditional, contemporary) for a variety of clients. There is no project too small or too large, if you value design, I am thrilled to help.
In 2008, my firm was named “best green designers” by Virginia Sustainable Building Network through our work on sustainable, LEED Certified, EarthCraftCertified, and Energy Star projects in the residential, commercial, and industrial segments. We have been fortunate over the last 16 years, that I have been with the firm, to have clients that wanted to create buildings, businesses, and homes that are healthy, energy-efficient, and durable.”

Key Takeaways:

  • Work Ethic is Important.
  • It is best to put your family first, before your business. It will have a greater impact on your life in the long run.
  • Expand your business as others are contacting theirs.
  • Make lists. This helps you to maintain what needs to get done.
  • Building trust is the most important thing.
  • Social Networks are helpful for others to get to know you a little better and contact you in a variety of ways.
  • Designing and living in a way that doesn’t deplete resources and abilities of future generations so that they can live that same way, with the same quality of life.


Tweetable Quotes

[Tweet “”Work ethic is important.” @thegainesgroup”]
[Tweet “”Building trust is the most important thing.” @thegainesgroup”]
[Tweet “”Make lists. This helps you to maintain what needs to get done.” @thegainesgroup”]


Complete Show Notes with Clickable Links at

04: Find More Customers & Get More Sales – Town Hall Show

Show 4 CoverWelcome to the first Friday Town-Hall Meeting. This is the show where were answer questions, discuss the challenges of small business, sometimes have a guest, and have a little bit of fun.  In today’s episode we talk about the challenges of finding new customers and getting new sales.  Every small business needs sales, so I am going to dive deep and talk about the solutions to this challenge.
Speaking of challenges.  It was a challenging start to the week…  We had some server issues, but we were able to get the podcast off the ground.  Thank you for being a part of it.
I would like your feedback.  My desire is to serve you.  Let me know your thoughts and suggestions for the show.  You can leave them in the comments below.
These business challenges came from our reader survey that we did late last year.

Business Challenge #1  “How do I laser-focus and define my core target client persona and her/his most urgent/biggest pain points to tailor my service modules to get precisely the results they need.”

  • Profile your existing clients or determine the profile of the market you want to serve.
  • Survey
  • Sample products
  • Market before you produce and get feedback

Business Challenge #2 – “How do I connect with the right market in ways that drive new business and create sustainable relationships and income potential.”

  • Once you have identified the market, find out where they “hang out”
  • Engage them there.
  • Build connections with influencers
  • Give lots of “gifts”
  • Have a strategy and system to build those relationships over time.

Finding New Sales

  • Past customers (Sales & Referrals)
  • Consistently build connections 
  • Leverage tools so that you can connect 1 to many instead of 1 to a few
  • Look for tools that foster a two way conversation not just a 1 way conversation.


The lazy person claims, “There’s a lion on the road! Yes, I’m sure there’s a lion out there!” As a door swings back and forth on its hinges, so the lazy person turns over in bed. Lazy people take food in their hand but don’t even lift it to their mouth. Lazy people consider themselves smarter than seven wise counselors. (‭Proverbs‬ ‭26‬:‭13-16‬ NLT)

Complete show notes with clickable links at

Strengthen Your Marriage Through Confession & Healing

Today’s Post is a guest post from Justin Davis of Refine-Us Ministries.
Justin and his wife Trisha know all too well the dangers of settling for an ordinary marriage. Their own failure to recognize the warning signs almost resulted in the end of their marriage, their family, and their ministry.
Justin and Trisha are bloggers, authors, speakers and founders of RefineUs Ministries. Sharing their story of pain, loss and redemption, RefineUs is igniting a movement to build healthy marriages and families.
They are the co-authors of their first book, Beyond Ordinary: When a Good Marriage Just Isn’t Good Enough, published by Tyndale House Publishers.
I believe that through this post you will be challenged and encouraged to strive of an extraordinary marriage.

When Trisha and I first got married and entered ministry in 1995, I prided myself on being a person that was accountable. I was accountable in my choices: I wouldn’t counsel with a woman behind a closed office door; I wouldn’t give a teenage girl a ride home from church without another person in the car. I wouldn’t do lunch with a female without my wife or another male staff member. At all costs I wanted to be accountable.
When we started Genesis Church in 2002, I knew that accountability would be of utmost importance. I sought out a guy in our core group and asked him if we could meet each Wednesday morning to “hold each other accountable.” As a church planter, I had a church planting coach. He and I would meet every Thursday morning and he would ask me questions about my relationship with God. He would ask me questions about my marriage, my struggles, my weaknesses. He wanted to hold me accountable. Eventually I had a group of Elders I met with once a month who were the spiritual leaders of our church, and I was accountable to them.
So with all of these boundaries and all of these safe guards and all of these great leaders and friends holding me accountable how could I ever be unfaithful to God and my wife? That’s not possible right? But I was unfaithful, despite all of my accountability.


Accountability is only as valuable as the transparency you and I offer in the context of that accountability. I was just transparent enough to make people believe I was authentic. I was as honest as it was comfortable. I knew how to admit weaknesses and struggles that were socially acceptable and would score me religious points.
Why do we hide so easily?

  • Fear of rejection.
  • Fear of judgment.
  • Fear of the consequences of honesty.
  • Fear of losing a relationship.

No decision made in fear is ever healthy.

Andy Stanley said, “We fear the consequences of confession because we have yet to realize the consequences of concealment.”

I think that’s why James says in 5:16, “ Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.”
We don’t talk about the “healing” type of confession in the Church very often. In fact, we have built a religious system that tries to find healing through hiding our sins, not confessing them. The sins we do confess are safe sins: bitterness, jealousy, materialism, selfishness.
For years, I forfeited the healing that God longed to bring to my heart not because I didn’t confess my sins to Him; but because I refused to confess them to anyone else.
Temptation loses its power when we confess. 
Sin loses its ability to keep us fractured when we confess. 
Addictions lose the control they have in our lives when we confess. 
In order to not go back to sharing “just enough to look accountable” I am consistently asking myself these questions as I attempt to be transparent…maybe they will help you today:


Shading the truth is easy. Exaggerating is often unnoticeable. As I am telling any story, but especially a story about myself, I want to always ask, “Am I telling the entire truth right now? Am I leaving anything out or adding anything to this story? Am I lying when the truth will do?”


You know how this rolls…we share parts of our heart with someone and 100% of our motivation is to show them how “close to God” we are. We want them to think of us as spiritual; we want to appear put together; we want to settle any doubt they may have about our relationship with God.


Sometime the person I need to be the most honest with is myself. I can deceive myself easier than anyone else. If I can’t be honest with myself, then I’m incapable of being honest with others.
God knew that we would need two things to live in freedom in this life: the burden-bearing love of one another and the power of God through prayer. Confess your sins to one another and pray for each other…so that you may be healed. 
Will living this way be easy? No. Will it be worth it? More than you could ever imagine.

Justin and Trisha Davis
RefineUs Ministries

Reflections on Thanksgiving 2014

Thanksgiving 2014So yesterday was Thanksgiving…
We had a wonderful time together here as a family.  Today we head to my parents home and tomorrow we are at Victoria’s.  I am so thankful for our many blessings.  There are things I long for that haven’t been yet been realized.  But, overall, I am extremely grateful.
These last few months have been a journey in “Gratitude.”  In some ways, I think this is the greatest lesson that God is teaching me right now.  Life still has it’s struggles, but I am overcoming the struggles with gratitude.
Gratitude changes perspective… As I was reading The Noticer last evening… he kept talking about “perspective.”  Perspective is how we view things.  Sometimes our perspective is crystal clear and we understand the truth, and other times our perspective is warped and we are missing all the blessings that we have.
I have come to the conclusion that gratitude is the only way to enjoy life, grow and fulfill my destiny.  Even if gratitude results in an overly optimistic view of reality, I am better off with gratitude than having a negative view of life.
On Wednesday in my blog post, I shared that the hidden secret of Thanksgiving is that it could transform your life.  I also challenged you to speak your gratitude.

Therefore, here is my thankfulness list in no particular order.  Some of these items are big some are small, but for all of them I am thankful.

  • My amazing wife who always speaks well of me in public
  • My four daughters who fill my life with love and laughter
  • My savior Jesus Christ who set me free from the bondage of sin so that I can fulfill my destiny
  • The opportunity to help others through coaching small business owners
  • The incredible opportunity that the web has opened up for ordinary people like me to get our message out
  • Trager Brother’s coffee that is great to drink and take care of the farmers
  • Our miracle foal, Amari, that was born and survived even when the vet thought she wouldn’t
  • Extended family that loves and encourages one another
  • Friends who have stuck with me through good times and bad
  • A warm home on a cold morning as I write this post
  • A garden that produced abundance and filled our pantry with canned goods
  • Material blessings that allow me to eliminate more that 50% of the clothes in my closet and still have more than enough
  • Strength and good health for me and my family
  • The accomplishing of a lifelong goal to write a book (first draft complete)
  • All of you, my readers, who have supported and encouraged me on this journey.

I am thankful that I have the opportunity to participate in the revival of the small business and the revival of YOU, the small business owners.  I am looking forward to a great year as I get to see more and more lives, families and businesses transformed.  Thank you for supporting me here at the beginning.

What are you thankful for this year?

Share your “list” in the comments.  Together we will encourage each other.


  • Brian