Ken Dunn Joins Us On The Steve Jobs Inspired Join Up Dots Podcast
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Introducing Ken Dunn
Ken Dunn is our guest today joining us on the Steve Jobs inspired Join Up Dots free podcast interview.
He is a man who seems to be able to juggle more things at once than a juggling octopus.
He is a husband, Father and serial entrepreneur with a history of taking start-ups to huge success in a very short time.
But like so many of our guests his career didn’t start where you would expect it to start.
He started as far away as is possible to where he is today.
Helping the world change the way people write, read and experience books with his company Readers Legacy.
Instead, he started on the path to where he is, by working as a police officer in Halifax Nova Scotia.
There he performed Patrol duties, undercover drug enforcement, surveillance ops, industrial fraud and theft investigations.
Whilst moving through the ranks, he was learning amazing skills.
Skills that you wouldn’t think would help him shoot to such entrepreneurial success,.
However they were fact the stepping stones for Ken Dunn, to build companies of his own that flourished.
The Dots Start Joining Up for Ken
Organisational skills, leadership skills, an eye for detail all were honed.
In 2001 he started KPLJ that competed in the mortgage business in Canada.
It’s rapid financial success, coupled with a start in direct selling, forced his exit from Law Enforcement and he has never looked back.
So if he knew then what he knows know would he still start his career in the Police force?
And does he know what the true super talent that he has always possessed?
Could he have used only this and still made it to the top?
And did he take the handcuffs with him….and you know what those kind of things are used for?
Well let’s find out as we bring onto the show to start to joining up dots with the one and only Mr Ken Dunn.
During the show we discussed such weighty topics with Ken Dunn such as:
How he sometimes feels that he squandered his first fifteen years, but knew in his heart that there were learnings to be had within those perceived wasted years.
He shares the DOVE technique and explains how by using this simple process.
We can all decide if an idea is worth pursuing with or not.
How kindle books sales are diminishing for the first time in history, and why Ken Dunn believes this should be happening (and it is a very compelling argument to say the least)
The true expert business advice of Wayne Gretzkys is shared with us all, which is so simple but highly effective for everyone to take on board everyday.
Ken Dunn Books
How To Connect With Ken Dunn
If you enjoyed this episode of Ken Dunn then why not listen to some of our favourite podcast episodes such as Bruce Van Horn, Ted Yoder, Sean Swarner or the amazing Alfie Best
Or if you prefer just pop over to our podcast archive for thousands of amazing episodes to choose from.
Full Transcription Of Ken Dunn Interview
David Ralph [0:00]
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When we’re young, we have an amazing positive outlook about how great life is going to be. But somewhere along the line we forget to dream and end up settling and Join Up Dots features amazing people who refuse to give up and chose to go after their dreams. This is your blueprint for greatness. So here’s your host live from the back of his garden in the UK. David Ralph.
David Ralph [0:48]
Yes, hello, everybody and welcome to Join Up Dots. It’s another episode with David Ralph. It’s Episode 443. And it’s one of those horrible evenings as it started. To get dark in the United Kingdom very early now, we haven’t even messed around with a clogs. Why do we mess around with clocks? Now? I don’t know. We’ve all got lights. I’m going to ask today’s guest Actually, that’s the first profound question I’m gonna ask, why do we all mess around with our clocks? Because he is a man who knows the answer to everything. And he also seems to be able to juggle more things at once than a juggling octopus. He’s a husband, father, and serial entrepreneur with a history of taking startups to huge success in a very short time. But like so many of our guests his career didn’t start where you would expect it to start. No, he started as far away as possible to where he is today, helping the world change the way people write, read and experience books with his company read his legacy. Now instead, he started on the path to where he is by working as a police officer in Halifax, Nova Scotia, performing patrol duties undercover drug enforcement surveillance Ops, in depth, industrial fraud and theft investigations will TJ hooker stir that’s a praise for the debts While moving through the ranks he was learning the kind of skills that you wouldn’t think would help him shooter such entrepreneurial success. But when in fact the stepping stones to building companies of his own that flourished organisational skills, leadership skills, an eye for detail, all were honed then in 2001. He started Kp Lj, but competed in the mortgage business in Canada. And its rapid financial success coupled with a start in direct selling voice these exit from law enforcement and he’s never looked back. So if he knew then what he knows now would he still start his career in the police force? And does he know what the true super talent he has? isn’t good he abused this all the way to the top. And did he take the handcuffs with him and you know what were used for? Well, let’s find out as we bring onto the show to start joining up dots with the one and only Mr. Ken Dunn. How are you Mr. Ken?
Ken Dunn [2:51]
I’m doing fantastic David. Hey, do me a favour, go back and do that whole intro again I loved it.
David Ralph [2:57]
Oh, next time I do it properly. Some words, I don’t have. I’ve been recording all day, but sometimes your mouth just goes off in a different direction. I struggled through that one, sir, but hopefully it wasn’t too low performance.
Ken Dunn [3:10]
No, it was great brother. Thank you. Thanks for being here. I’m glad I’m here.
David Ralph [3:14]
So two questions. First of all number one, did you take the handcuffs? Did you did you Nick the handcuffs?
Ken Dunn [3:21]
Yeah, I still have a couple pairs of the handcuffs. Mostly. Now I use them when I’m exiting employees from my company.
David Ralph [3:28]
You say you’ve cleaned it up, haven’t you? That? That’s not what you would have said if we wasn’t recording. And do you? Do you mess around with the clocks in America like we do over in the United Kingdom?
Ken Dunn [3:38]
You know, it’s funny as you were saying that I was thinking we do and and No, I understand this whole daylight savings time but it really doesn’t make a lot of sense, does it?
David Ralph [3:48]
It makes no sense in the old days with the farmers and that they This is what we always talk about in the United Kingdom. How it’s because of the farmers. I don’t know if this is true, but they didn’t have light in the morning but everyone’s got a light now or a torch. Now. We don’t need to mess around with a clock just let it get gradually darker and gradually lighter instead of bang dark.
Ken Dunn [4:08]
Well, you know, I don’t remember when this was it was sometime in the past I was at a seminar somewhere and ironically, the speaker broke into a little segway about this very topic. And his theory was the reason that it all started Greenwich Mean Time and all the lot was in order to keep us daytime during the daytime and nighttime during the night time. And if we don’t do this, he said it killed our circadian rhythm. It will change our moods, our habits, more people will be committing suicide. I mean, there’s all kinds of hyperbole about it, but I’m not sure I believe any of it.
David Ralph [4:44]
Well, especially as you get more and more entrepreneurial, this is the perfect segue into the conversation. Yeah, exactly. People are now can dictate their own time. If I want to work at three o’clock in the morning they can do if they want to work whatever time it’s not like the old days where you get up at six o’clock at Morning,
Ken Dunn [5:00]
is it? Well, David, I would go in a little bit of a different direction there throughout history. I mean, if you look back to the days of stones and mortars, the people who were true entrepreneurs, they found a passion that possessed them something that it was way beyond just making money. And those people would end up working 20 hours a day regardless. And so I think that the changing of a clock the day or the night, the light of the day, it’s irrelevant. It’s about passion.
David Ralph [5:28]
And that’s what you found, haven’t you you found something that lights you up when names come through to me about coming on the show? More often than not, I haven’t heard of them. I’ll be open. But your name actually like the guests that I had just before you seems to be everywhere. You are a man that has a profile that is getting out there. Is that part of your sort of remain? Are you trying to get a global presence online?
Ken Dunn [5:55]
No, you know, I’ve never ever focused on my presence online. I’ve look I, you did a great job of explaining the whole circumstances surrounding my two different career paths. I started at 18 in law enforcement, and by 30 had decided that I was going to go in a different direction, but it wasn’t, you know, some amazing, you know, thought that I wanted to change the world it’s that I was flat broke because making $100,000 a year as a cop, but I was still broke. And my wife told me we were about to become parents
David Ralph [6:28]
can you make as a cop 100 claim as a as a police officer, can you make?
Ken Dunn [6:33]
Oh, yeah, absolutely. 29 years old, I was working in Ottawa, Canada, and I was an interrogator. I spent 90% of my time interrogating the suspects of major crimes. And the base salary was 75,000. And if I got called at two o’clock in the morning to go in and start an 18 hour interrogation, I was working at $100 an hour for the entire time so the money would rack up but it definitely took its toll on your life as well.
David Ralph [7:00]
And did the skills but you learned there? Did they help moving into your operational world that you’re in now because more often than not, we see on Join Up Dots that no experience is wasted. And even if you think it’s a totally different career, you actually look back and go now actually, I’m using quite a lot of that now.
Ken Dunn [7:16]
Oh, you know, I talked about this all the time, David, I’ve been blessed today to get regular calls to go speak to corporations and entrepreneurial groups and everything about my experiences. That often I segue into this exact line of conversation. Everything that I’ve learned in law enforcement are the skills that I use today in my companies, without a doubt, from organisation to detail to interrogation, it all is relevant.
David Ralph [7:45]
And is that a lesson that you try to share to everyone even if you are in a situation or a job that seems a bit crappy and you don’t like it, try to find the gift in it that you can use to sort of segue to somewhere else?
Ken Dunn [7:57]
Yeah, absolutely. I mean, the What I on on more than one occasion, in the last couple of years, I’ve had a chance to go in and speak to college kids their last year of university. And it’s typically marketing or business management programmes. And you know, because of the successes, I’m often asked to share my ideas on career paths. And I’m a big proponent of people becoming entrepreneurs. And I believe that the world needs more entrepreneurs, more innovation, more thought, in order to keep the world spinning round. But if I look at my own past, and that of some of the most elite entrepreneurs in the world that I’ve studied, what I’ve told often from these experiences to these new kids, just hitting the workforce is here’s what I suggest. When you first get out of school. Get into a major corporation, the biggest company you can even if it’s the most jovial or trivial job you can imagine, because you’re going to be exposed to the culture of a big company, you’re going to learn about how they pay employees how they met. Manage overtime how they manage holidays, how they, you know, perform tasks in large groups. And I say spend three or four years there, then go off and start a brand new company started, get involved in a startup not started. But get it become an employee, your skills in a major corporation will propel you into a senior management role in a new company. So we’ll go become an employee of a startup, you’re going to learn more skills there, you’re going to learn how to start a company, how p&l and balance sheets work, how to keep investors happy, how to develop products. And then once you’ve done that for three or four years, of course, David, then you’re ready to start your own company. So it’s very, very important that people take the time to mature their skill set through different environments.
David Ralph [9:45]
I agree with that totally because I spent 13 years straight from college in a bank, a big High Street bank, but it was the head office up in London so it was very glamorous, really. We have marble pillars and big stone step. Same dumb just opposite the Bank of England it was. And if I have to answer a phone now I still answer it in the same way that I was taught when I was about 16. And one of the things I used to have and I thought it was rubbish when I first joined, it was the very first day they went around sticking little stickers, and it was small, you’re on the telephone. And I used to think out loud, you know, you’re smiling when you’re on the telephone, but it’s always gonna be little things that I, I take with me and it’s that professionalism and the fact that when I’m on the mic, I’m smiling because I’m on the mic. It makes a difference doesn’t it learning those kinds of big corporations skills, and then moving on like you say,
Ken Dunn [10:37]
oh, without a doubt. I mean, look, how else in the world do you have the ability to build something unless you’ve learned something? Huh? Yeah.
David Ralph [10:49]
Oh, I thought I was gonna be a bit more than that. I was I was waiting for Mr. Dunn’s profound statements. But that was so profound. It was just short.
Ken Dunn [10:57]
No, that’s, that’s as profound as it gets, buddy.
David Ralph [11:00]
We’ll move on from that. So your readers legacy, was that a part of a big master plan? Or was that something that you literally just stumbled across? Because it seems to me that more often than not, the non entrepreneurs or the wannabe entrepreneurs kind of think that the successful people have it all planned out at the beginning. But when you talk to this successful people, they kind of go, No, I kind of just tried this. I tried that. And then it started to find its feet. I made mistakes. I found my way and then we are where we are. So was it part of the master plan?
Ken Dunn [11:31]
You know, I’ve had some 45 today, and I’m still a young man, but I’ve spent a significant amount of time thinking back and reflecting over the fact that the first 15 years of my adult life I basically squandered I feel and I felt resentful for a number of years why didn’t I learn sooner that I should be an entrepreneur? And then I realised that you need to go through those early days to learn the skills to eventually find your Passion that’s going to lead you into what your purposes Yeah. And for me, it was it was the most traumatic thing I’d ever been told in my life or learned or experienced. Now remember, I’ve been involved in a lot of trauma in my life, I was kicked in the door in a drug raid on a SWAT team and had to shoot a guy in the knees and then got in trouble because I didn’t kill them. I’ve jumped out of aeroplanes in order to save children. I mean, you name it, I’ve tonnes of stories of that. But the biggest most traumatic thing I ever heard was my wife saying you’re about to become a dad. And when that happened, I realised that I had to make a dramatic change. I had to, I did get out of policing, not because I didn’t love it. I enjoyed thoroughly what I did in law enforcement. But but because I didn’t want to raise kids in this negative place where I was constantly dealing with all of the most traumatic things in life. It didn’t affect me, but it didn’t matter. To me, and so then I went on this quest to find out what I should be doing. And I had no idea but I had a friend whose dad owned a major insurance company, and he was just taking over the helm of the company $50 million company and I went to him and I said, Jason, what what? I need some help. I got to start something. I got to make some extra money. And he said, I don’t know what you should do. But the day I decided I wanted to be involved in insurance company. My dad gave me a book. It’s called the greatest salesman in the world by augmon Dino, and I’d suggest you start by reading it now. David, I’d never finished a book. Admittedly, the only reason I finished the Bible. It’s because I read it in little pieces over seven years, but I’d never ever finished a book cover to cover before but I got a hold of that book and I read it non stop. I was inspired. I was excited by it. It was like watching a a action movie to me. And when I finished reading it, I went back to them excited I said okay, I get it, I get it. I’m a salesman. And he said, What are you talking about? He said, Well, the skills that augmon Dino said were the skills of the greatest salespeople in the world. They were the identical skills that I have learned in interrogating people. Now, I know that sounds odd to your listeners, because, you know most people, TJ hooker, they think of interrogations as a slap across the face or that famous scene from the most recent Batman movie where Batman’s interrogating the Joker and does his way with them. interrogation is really nothing like that. It’s relationship building. So you’ve never pinned somebody down
David Ralph [14:33]
with a chair over.
Ken Dunn [14:36]
You know, there’s times I’ve wanted to
David Ralph [14:38]
you disappoint me I imagine
Ken Dunn [14:40]
that you would know my friend interrogation is getting to know somebody and and finding a way to coalesce with them. coalesce is the is the art or the desire of human beings to coexist in harmony. And, you know, most often if we got if I got to know somebody really well in an interview And spend hours building a bond with them, then eventually, the prospect I mean, the suspect would realise that the best way for us to coalesced was with a clean slate. And they did admit to their crimes, so it was identical. And then of course, with that realisation, my friend said, I asked, Well, what should I do? And he said, Well, why don’t you start a mortgage company? We can refer you leads, you’ve got 1000 cops you work with I’m sure it’ll work out well, and we can help you through it. And the rest is history. But But my point is because you asked me about readers legacy, and I know that I went off on a tangent there. My point is, once I found that passion for reading in the next 10 years, as I was involved in the mortgage industry, then direct selling, I read over 1000 books on business, on leadership on skills that are related to business and p&l and finance and all the rest of it. And reading the books confirmed my experiences and it allowed me to join the dots and It then it got me into wanting to write a book. And then I launched my own publishing company as a little side business and my friends started asking me for help. And then one day in November or August of 2011, there was an article that came out in the New York Times, and it was the first month and more books were sold online than not. And the experts at the times were reporting and theorising that within 10 years, all books would be digital. And now with a profound love for my personal book collection, I realised that I needed to do something for the world that would help people to continue to coalesce with the books that they love, and when
David Ralph [16:44]
not Kindles and stuff.
Ken Dunn [16:46]
Yeah, so what we did is we’re readers legacy is is like Facebook, it’s basically it’s been dubbed as Facebook meets Amazon. So it’s a website that sells as many books as Amazon but it’s a Facebook experience where people get To build a virtual version of their home library and follow friends and check out what books their friends are reading and write reviews and identify what books they’re reading. And all the while, while they’re doing all this, they collect points called lit coins. They get points for adding books to their libraries for following friends for becoming fans of authors for sharing links, all the stuff we’re used to doing in the social world we live in. But here the lit coins are a currency that has real value. You can buy physical books with the lit coins, and we’ll send them to you. And so it really is a unique platform of the likes of which does not exist in the world today,
David Ralph [17:37]
when I’ll be honest, Mr. Dunn, I’m a bit surprised by that I’d seen read his legacy. I’d looked around. I’ve done my research on you, but I haven’t seen anything mentioning about a kind of Facebook hybrid. How long has that been going?
Ken Dunn [17:52]
We only launched the of course, you know, we’ll have to date stamp this now because this is going to become a permanent archive on the internet. So you know, we’re at October Eight today in 2015. And we only launched the website on June 15, in 2015. So it’s only been alive and breathing for three months. It’s just a baby. And was it your idea?
David Ralph [18:11]
Because I instantly think to myself, Oh my god, yeah, you could do this, but loads of things on my entrepreneurial spinning started happening.
Ken Dunn [18:21]
Yeah. So this idea came to me in August of 11. And it’s haunted me I have a, you know, so another little bit I do with entrepreneurs is teaching them how to realise great ideas and build businesses and I have a technique called the dove technique. It’s an acronym It stands for dream, organise, validate and execute. This is the secret to building a big business and, you know, so I came up with this dream of building this incredible community online. I organised my thoughts by writing out a detailed business plan and getting a graphic designer to make pictures of it. Then I validated it. I went out to the publishing industry and I found experts that were connected to Amazon and Goodreads. And I showed them my idea. And they all said, This is unbelievable. You need to build this. And then execution, obviously, is the sum total of getting the first three done properly. I did it. But yeah, you know, obviously, there’s a lot of things that are secrets that I can’t reveal, I can reveal that we’re, in a week we’re launching a book club, you know, there’s a wall in there, you can build, you know, you can have your own following in there. If you’d like to do things with books. If you’re an author, you can build an author page, and we’ll give you your list. So if you end up with 10,000 people following you, you can export it into a spreadsheet and add it to your own CRM. There’s a video conferencing technology that we’ve built that we’re launching in three months that is exactly like Periscope, but right on the platform. There’s just we actually started working on our video conferencing technology three years ago. So periscope beat us by a few days but but then of course, once we hit critical mass, there’s a whole bunch of other really unique bells and whistles that We’re going to be launching for our tribe. Absolutely. Well,
David Ralph [20:04]
I’m gonna play some words we normally play around about this time of the show, but I’m gonna delve back into that because that is a fascinating project you’ve got, but this is the words of Jim Carrey.
Jim Carrey [20:13]
My father could have been a great comedian, but he didn’t believe that that was possible for him. And so he made a conservative choice. Instead, he got a safe job as an accountant. And when I was 12 years old, he was let go from that safe job. And our family had to do whatever we could to survive. I learned many great lessons from my father, not the least of which was that you can fail at what you don’t want. So you might as well take a chance on doing what you love.
David Ralph [20:40]
Now, that ties up with everything you’re doing, but it’s the things that you love risky as he said, you might as well take a chance you might as well take a risk once you get so into it. Obviously a lot of the technicality stuff you can’t do I imagine that you can’t do this all of the periscope, business and all that kind of stuff. Is it scary? Handing those things off to somebody when it’s your own dream.
Ken Dunn [21:03]
You know, the most difficult part of scaling a large idea and becoming an entrepreneur is exactly what Jim Carrey just said. Although you might as well go out and do it because it’s it’s a risk either way. The risk is much more immense. I haven’t I have a company today that is, you know, was just touted recently by Publishers Weekly as America’s fastest growing new publishing company. It’s called next century publishing. We have 800 books in stores, we publish about 50 new books every single month, we have an exorbitant amount of new people that call next century looking for help with their books. And then on top of that, the readers legacy company, it’s all part of the same company. We have over 45 employees. We have offices in Las Vegas, Toronto, Canada and Panama City, Panama, and balancing the budget alone and paying your bills requires more skill than then anybody could possibly imagine. unless they’ve been trained. through it. And it’s those challenges that I’ve just mentioned that are the reason that 90% of companies die. And so it is an incredible risk to start a company today. But if you’re possessed if you’ve got an idea that keeps you awake at night, that becomes part of every conversation that you have with every single person alive. If you don’t pursue it, it will kill you.
David Ralph [22:25]
I agree with that. Totally, I can board a weld with Join Up Dots. I really can. And fortunately, it’s some of the guys I meet to have a beer with. And I’m putting this out to you guys. You know who you are. They love talking about it. So I will talk about it. We can talk about it all night about different guests and different things because they’re on that kind of inspirational what can we do with our life vibe, but it does bore people doesn’t it when they’re not into that but all you want to do is talk about it. So I know that passion Does your wife buy into that passion or does she go oh can just turn the telly on and be quiet for a while.
Ken Dunn [22:57]
While you know it’s funny to say that you know If you if you are going to be an entrepreneur and become possessed the way an entrepreneur needs to in the in the pursuit of a successful venture, you’d better be doing something that is aligned with your family’s beliefs. For if you’re not, it’s going to be lonely at the at the point of success. And what I really saw that was was the tie that binds for us is my I was the last of my immediate family, my wife and kids to start reading. My wife has been an avid reader from the day she was a child. My children today are 14 and 12. And they consume six to eight books per month, every month. And so pursuing this it actually became the tie that bound us together. And it’s it’s because without my wife and children, I wouldn’t be doing this. It’s not that important to me. And so having your priorities straight ism as an entrepreneur is important. Not so that you can work eight hours a day and remain balanced. Because that’s a bloody lie. If you’re going to do something to the magnitude of greatness and worlds calibre, it is going to take all of your time all of your days every day. And so you better make sure your family are excited about what you’re doing as well.
David Ralph [24:15]
So when you get to that point when you hit critical mass, and it kind of runs away with you, and we see that in businesses, and you don’t actually have to work 20 hours a day like you do at the beginning, will you be grateful? Or will you feel like you’re missing something as your life support system being cut off, because I was talking to a guy yesterday, who said he worked for six years to build a business, thinking that he wanted the freedom when the freedom here he didn’t know what to do himself?
Ken Dunn [24:43]
Well, readers legacy will become an icon. In the publishing industry, some are already saying that it’s going to become the centre of the publishing industry. And so my role will just change and evolve as it grows to the one day that, you know, our plan is to is ventually spend so much of our time and philanthropic causes, you know, helping to provide books and reading opportunities to the billions around the world that still are illiterate. And so I’ll I’ll just move into other things that more closely involve my wife and my kids and really making a difference in the world’s books have changed my my life, not just because I own them, but the things I’ve read in them. I feel like I’ve been mentored by all of the greatest leaders in the world because their books contain their greatest thoughts. And through the reading of those books, their thoughts have become mind.
David Ralph [25:36]
I’m on basically probably about four books a week, and I always read a lot. I like him, but I used to read the sort of john Grisham and the stories and stuff. And from doing this show, I get a lot of guests sending me their books. And at the beginning, I’ll be honest with you, Ken, I didn’t bother reading them. I just kind of made up questions based around them. I kind of did the route of if I wasn’t If I hadn’t read this book, why would I want to be reading this book? But now I literally have about four or five books on the go. But my kids, I can’t get him to read at all. I really don’t. And interestingly, yesterday, I heard on the radio, there’s a big bookstore in the United Kingdom. I don’t know if they’re in America called Waterstones, and they are actually going to stop actually promoting Kindle books, because they’re finding that dropping away a bit that’s dying, and that the proper books that you’re holding your hand and you move up to sort of sit in front of your stomach when you want to read them. They’re the ones coming back.
Ken Dunn [26:35]
Right? Yeah, that’s, that’s what we’re seeing as well. So our platform we actually looks right now physical books, and 30% of books purchased in America Kindle, so we’re referring people to Amazon if they want to buy the Kindle version. But you know, there’s an article it’s funny, you’re saying this, there’s an article that was just published two weeks ago, and for the first time in history, Two months ago, there was an actual recess in the amount of ebooks that were consumed in that month. It was the month of July. What more physical books were purchased in July than then ebooks. And that’s the first time in four years it’s happened. So I think the world is moving back towards the physical.
David Ralph [27:17]
But But why? Because the kind of the AI player walking around with an mp3 player full of songs and albums. That’s all you want, isn’t it? You can’t imagine you would go back in time to only being able to have a CD or a cassette. So why do you think sort of Kindles are dropping back?
Ken Dunn [27:33]
I get the opportunity today to travel around the world and speak to large corporations for a fee most often on raising revenue and validating businesses and and motivating every person in the company to to become a representative of the company, great prospectors. And every time I talk I get a chance to explain to people that we are are creatures of coalescence, this term means the word means to exist together in harmony to find the connection where you can be comfortable and feel safe. And we have this incredible ability to coalesce with everything around us. It’s why if we’re in a room and the lights are too bright, we turn them down. It’s why if we find somebody that speaking too loud, we move slightly away from them. And I believe that that same desire exists for people who love to read books. And as much as things are going digital, human nature, subconscious. Listen, we are all products of subconscious responses to the stimuli in our environment. That means that we don’t even realise when we’re reacting to things, but you know, most often people hear that I don’t know what it was. I just, I just felt something huh. That’s a subconscious response to stimuli, the stimuli is the kindle the reader, and with a deep desire beyond comprehension for us to coalesce, then eventually those stimuli are going to start working against us. And we’re going to gravitate back to where we feel comfortable. And that’s a physical book. It just makes total sense if you understand the the ideal of human desire to coalesce, and our subconscious response to stimuli. I know that’s a big term, but I mean, think about this. Have you ever met somebody face to face in real life? And within seconds of meeting them, you said, Gosh, I don’t know what it is. But I just there’s something about this guy. I really like him.
David Ralph [29:43]
Yeah, and the opposite as well.
Ken Dunn [29:45]
Of course, yeah. That is a subconscious response. It’s your subconscious that’s responding. And it’s a subconscious response to the stimuli that’s presented to you. Well, the same thing exists with somebody’s desire to read. You know, it’s just It’s take this taken a while because of all the hype, but I believe that there’s gonna be even more of a movement back towards the physical books. You can’t call a less with a book that’s on an object that’s on a Kindle.
David Ralph [30:11]
It’s nice on holiday, though, isn’t it? When you know, I always take a paperback on holiday. And more often than not, people are leaving paperbacks all over the place. So there’s always books and stuff. But I can’t imagine if I was going on a sort of tour around the world or something. A Kindle is perfect, isn’t it?
Ken Dunn [30:26]
Yeah, it is. But you know, it gets lost too. So like, you know, more and more people are using the Kindle app on their iPad. And if you’re reading the Kindle your book on your iPad, and you get a new email that comes in what’s human nature, say? Yeah, you can obviously downtown you. You get distracted and you look at that email, and then something happens and then you get linked over to a website. And then before you know it, you’re on Facebook, and you’ve gotten away from that reading. And so I think that it’s you know, it There’s always going to be a market for Kindles. But I think that people are going to continue to merge back towards the physical. And you know, I’ve written five books. So I want people to read more physical books, too.
David Ralph [31:11]
So So how do you thinking about sort of looking at Kindle and then clicking onto email and then going over to a website, and the beginning in the introduction, I said, you juggle more things at once, when a juggling octopus, how do you remain focused, when they’re asking you to zip across the world to go and do talking? And then do your readers legacy and then do your new century or whatever it was called, and you know, you’ve got so much on your plate, how do you know what to do? Right?
Ken Dunn [31:39]
I get I have incredible trusting relationships with people. And so I have the most amazing partners in my companies that take care of all the important parts. And we’ve, you know, Jim Collins, in his book, good degrade, he theorised about getting people doing the right things, and what happened When everybody is coalescing in that state, he called that having the right people in the right seats on the bus. And so I spend a significant amount of time, making sure that that’s the case. And it relieves a lot of the stress so I can focus on the little things. You know, Richard Branson says, Take care of your employees, they’ll take care of your company. And so because of all of the things that I’ve learned, and now I implement, I’ve created this coalescence, this harmony that exists and it allows me to do the things that I’m good at within incredible confidence that the people that work with me and they call them employees, I hate that word. But the people that work with me, are good at doing the things that they’re good at.
David Ralph [32:42]
And do you have that trust inherently or have you gone through a journey yourself of micromanaging people?
Ken Dunn [32:50]
Yeah, you’re brilliant at asking questions, David. I absolutely did not. And and it has taken me years. too, you know, in Canada, I’m from originally from Canada, and I’m a hockey fanatic. My children both play elite level hockey. And the, you know, Wayne Gretzky, obviously one of the greatest hockey players, arguably the greatest hockey player of all times, has a couple really neat things that he says about hockey, that were his secrets to success, but are also the most profound business statements ever. The first thing he says, when asked, How do you score so many goals? How are you always there? And he says, because I am always going to be where the puck is going to be, not where it is. And so you know, if you think about the communication in business with that, it’s just about dreaming and thinking ahead and getting used to the way things go so that you can stay ahead of things and that’s, that happens from experience and reading and all kinds of things. The second thing he says is that I’ve developed an elite level shot because I don’t hold the stick to that. This is a profound business statement. So many of us and myself, I had years the first seven years I was in business experienced pain beyond what I even want to discuss most times because I wanted things to be so perfect all the time that I felt I needed to influence and do everything myself. And I got so stressed out and I was so anal about every single detail. I didn’t even realise it but I was white knuckled because I was gripping the stick too tight. And then as I developed and matured and got punched in the face and bumped and scraped my knees, dozens of times I realised that I could get more done if I just loosened up my grip and my shot would become better. And and you do that when you’ve got good people in place and you realise that Rome wasn’t built in a day. You know, it’s taken me four years to get readers legacy to the point it is right now and to launch it and for people to be using it. I have 11 programmers, but I wanted to think built in a weekend. I just realised that things don’t happen as fast as you were, I want them to things happen at their natural rates. And if you try and squeeze the stick too tight and you try and move things too fast, it’s just gonna work against you.
David Ralph [35:17]
Well, let’s listen to some words. Now for my famous lady from America, she’s doing a white for herself, you’ll recognise her. This is Oprah.
Oprah Winfrey [35:26]
The way through the challenge is to get still and ask yourself, what is the next right move? not think about, Oh, I got all of this stuff. But what is the next right move? And then from that space, make the next right move, and the next right move and not to be overwhelmed by it. Because, you know, your life is bigger than that one moment. You know, you’re not defined by what somebody says is a failure for you, because failure is just there to point you in a different direction.
David Ralph [35:58]
So are you at the point Now Ken, where you’re right move may not be the right move, somebody else has got a better right move and you are comfortable enough in your position to allow them to direct your business.
Ken Dunn [36:12]
Yeah, well, that’s, you know what, so if I was gonna talk directly to Oprah, I would probably feel the desire to want to be more specific than what she had and perhaps even contradict her a bit. It’s much safer for you. If you feel you need to make make the next right move. There’s an old saying there’s an old song right I got by with a little help from my friends. I know it goes on to say I get high with a little help from my friends, but that obviously high on life can be enough for that. And so you know, when you get into this state of autonomy, with in coalescence with your colleagues and your employees, every right move can be more right because you can get other people’s feedback and opinions and let them be involved in it. So Yeah, I totally agree with her with the one caveat that as you’re deciding what that next right move is, then then you, when you work in mass and you have a whole bunch of people that have bought into the same vision, then you get to benefit from more experiences, ideas, and thoughts.
David Ralph [37:15]
Because I think what she’s saying with the sort of next right move is what Wayne Gretzky was saying, by by experience, you get yourself in the position where you think it’s gonna work. And if it doesn’t then sort of pivot and try something different, but it’s that forward thinking, proactive action of getting to where you think it’s gonna be, right. That’s what she said,
Ken Dunn [37:37]
experience and education environments. I’ve another talk that I do to major corporations, it’s about change, and it’s about it’s called the two E’s. And it’s the two keys to making changes are having the requisite experience and having the right environment and if something’s not going right for you, you’d only need to change those two things. And I would say that, you know, the reason Wayne Gretzky knows where that puck is gonna be next is because he’s shot the puck a million times because he’s played hockey 10 hours a day. And since he was four years old, because when other kids are having hot chocolate and getting ready for bed at 10 o’clock up in Toronto, Canada, in the middle of the winter at 10 o’clock at night on a frozen ice pond, he’s out there playing hockey. And so there’s no short tracking success. You’ve got to pay your price. You’ve got to spend years developing your experiences and then you get to be the the, you know, the user of those experiences at the right stage. And you’ll know when it’s happening, you’ll know when it’s the time things will just start to come to your mind answers to problems very quickly.
David Ralph [38:51]
But how do you know that you are at the right time for the experience you’ve gained because one of the things that you’re doing and you’re doing very well is your public Speaking and you’ve got your presentations. But at the very beginning, when somebody comes through to you and says, Mr. Dan, I’d like you to come and speak to my company. If you’d like the rest of us, you would have gone Oh, no, I’m actually I’m happy with what I’m doing. But I don’t want to put myself out there. Now it’s more comfortable. When did you know it was the right time to actually start going into that field as well?
Ken Dunn [39:21]
I didn’t, when at the very, very beginning. The first time I I was speaking publicly was when I was 22 years old, and I was introducing the Crimestoppers programme in the Canadian Armed Forces. And I just happened to be the person that got stuck doing it and I had to do a presentation to over 500 Senior ranking Canadian military officers to convince them that this was a good move for the Canadian Armed Forces with a quarter of a million dollar budget. I was trying to get approved. And I left it up beyond understanding I was embarrassed, I screwed it up completely. And I walked out of the presentation halfway through and to the detriment of the approval of programme, but I just kept going, I just kept working at it. I just found myself in place after place where I had to do it. And then I realised I should take a couple courses to alleviate my fears. And I just kept pursuing it. I just kept fighting, because I knew that it was important to, to who I was. And I was constantly being put in positions where I needed to talk to other people. And so I had to get good at it.
David Ralph [40:27]
And do you think that you are good at it now? Because once you get good at something, you realise that you’re only at the beginning, don’t you? I find it a fascinating process where you can think I can do this for a couple of years. But once you sort of really get into it, you realise No, actually, I’m pretty good compared to who I’m with. But there’s these guys ahead. They’re the ones I’ve got to aim for. Have you got people ahead of you, but you look at and go, yeah, they know how to work a crowd. They know how to just move through stories and personal anecdotes to actually present you know, the master Really, Steve Jobs. And when you look at Steve Jobs, I think one of the things that he said, which was so profound to me because I come from a public speaking background, and I hate PowerPoint, and he said, If you know your subject, you don’t need PowerPoint. And I thought, Yeah, you’ve nailed it. So are there people that you look at? And you go, yeah, that’s what I’m aiming for.
Ken Dunn [41:20]
Yes, you know, my latest book is called the greatest prospector in the world. And as you can imagine, it is a parable. It is a it’s a direct competitor to arguably the greatest sales book in history. augmentee knows book, the greatest salesman in the world, and my book is better. And I now have to become a better orator, a better speaker than augmon Dino, and I have to become as good as Steve Jobs, if not better. I would argue with Steve that you do or do not need PowerPoint. I have a speaking coach named Nick Boothman, who gets paid $30,000. Every time he speaks on the stage speaks 100 times a year. And Nick is teaching me too. To understand that if you’re a true speaker, then you’re actually an entertainer. And some people like to use PowerPoint to entertain. And so I think it’s alright to bottom line answer to your story is that I know I’m a good speaker today. The amount of money I get paid to do, it tells me that, but I’m fired from a great speaker. It’s the realisation of one’s own greatness is a detriment to the success of of somebody’s goals.
David Ralph [42:29]
Yeah. And that’s so well, I’m digging into really because you have got a value, and people will present a value to you. And when you first start getting going, your take anything because you’re good. But once it actually gets to that point, there seems to be a tipping point where people think I’m not actually that good. I’m being paid thousands to stand up there. I’m being paid a year’s salary to do it, but actually not that good in your heart of hearts. Have you been through that journey as well.
Ken Dunn [43:01]
Oh, without a doubt. Yeah, that’s why I’m here at Brendon Burchard event in California right now spending the next three days studying how he is on stage and how his speakers are on stage. Not here because of the content necessarily that he’s delivering, but that I believe he is really good. I won’t ever stop trying to become better. I won’t ever be great, but I’m definitely gonna keep fighting towards it.
David Ralph [43:26]
But how do you overcome that? That stumbling block that mental stumbling block of first of all quoting your price, and then justifying your price later?
Unknown Speaker [43:38]
You know, what, here’s what I’ve realised is it doesn’t matter what you’ve done, I put a little post on my Facebook page. That’s the other day that hundreds of people liked and it would just caught me. And I said, Don’t let your story become what you did, but rather what you’re doing. Yeah. And so many People in their lives get hooked to the success they’re having. True entrepreneurs are never finished. And and that’s the way it is for me, I, my goals are so lofty that I’ll spend the rest of my life pursuing them. It’s called passion. And it’s the same with speaking to I’m not ever dismayed or disappointed by how good I am now, because I’m not good enough. Look, I don’t want to bring my religious beliefs into this. But I, I have a strong belief about the truth in the story of a dude that hung himself on a cross. And I’ll never be as good as him. And we should all have mentors in our lives that we aspire to be as good as and if we ever get to the point where where we believe we’re as good as our mentor, then it’s time for another mentor.
David Ralph [44:46]
Yeah, profound, profound stuff, as are the words that created the whole show of Join Up Dots, which we’re going to bring onto the show now. These were Steve Jobs words that he said back in 2005, and are hugely powerful, and I listened to him every day. This is Steve Jobs.
Steve Jobs [45:01]
Of course, it was impossible to connect the dots looking forward when I was in college. But it was very, very clear looking backwards 10 years later. Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward, you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something, your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. Because believing that the dots will connect down the road will give you the confidence to follow your heart, even when it leads you off the well worn path. And that will make all the difference.
David Ralph [45:36]
So do you buy into those words? Steve says
Ken Dunn [45:39]
yeah, Steve Jobs is one of my my favourite mentors. I’ve wrote about him in my first book and i i agree with every single word that he just said there. And the only thing I would add to it and then I have said publicly and I’m sure he would add if we just kept going, is once you get to that point in your life, and you See how the dots are connected together, then you can predict where they’re going. Because it doesn’t end there. The realisation can give you some confidence in what’s happening. But now, it’ll also help you to chart a course for the next phase.
David Ralph [46:14]
So they go from being dots into stepping stones.
Ken Dunn [46:17]
David Ralph [46:19]
So So what is your big deal? I always ask this to most of the guests and I’m fascinated with yourself because you’ve had such kind of varied career almost into half. But did you have a big dot when things started to really go the way that you imagined?
Ken Dunn [46:35]
Yeah, I realised, you know, through everything that happened to me through reading that first book of augmon dinos back in 1999. And then everything that’s happened in the 16 years since I only realised a couple of years ago that all of the experience was about books that I am destined to make a global impact on books and all other things. Things I’ve been through has just been part of the study of how books impact reality. And now that I’ve been able to connect those dots, I know exactly what I need to do to stay focused for the rest of my life. My litmus test today, whenever I’m looking at a new opportunity is what does this have to do with books? And if I see no connection to it, I won’t pursue it. And it’s not because I don’t think it’s a good idea. It’s just I know, I know that the dots are joined if I’m going to use that example. And and it wakes me up every day. It keeps me awake at night thinking about it.
David Ralph [47:36]
You’ve truly truly found your path, haven’t you?
Ken Dunn [47:39]
David Ralph [47:41]
And do you do a nice job?
Ken Dunn [47:42]
I’ll tell you, I’ll just say this, David, I will. My name will become synonymous with books before I end living on this planet. And I won’t stop until that happens. My wife and my children are very proud of the fact that I’m driven like that. Good on us.
David Ralph [48:00]
Well, your name is also going to be linked to Join Up Dots because this is the end of the show. And this is the part when we send you back in time to have a one on one with your younger self. And if you could go back in time and speak to the young Ken, what advice would you give and what age would you choose? Well, we’re going to find out because we’re going to play the theme tune and when it fades, you’re up. This is the Sermon on the mic.
Unknown Speaker [48:27]
We go with the best bit of the show.
Ken Dunn [48:45]
You know, my advice to myself, would be would be exactly this and I’m excited about this. I’ve been waiting for this point of your show the whole time, David D. Because this this is the advice I would love to give to millions of people. They’re in their early 20s you’re going to, and it’s almost a little emotional to even say this, you are going to go through some incredible pain in your life, you’re going to go through some incredible learning experiences in your life. And while you’re in the moment, they’re going to be many a time when you want to just give up and stop because of what’s happening. And you need to understand that those are the most important parts of the journey. You don’t know what the perfect grip on the stick is, until you’ve tried to hold it too tight or too loose. You don’t know the right way to run a company until you’ve failed running a company. And you don’t know what your true destiny is until you’ve tried enough different things to you can figure out what you’re the best at and so regardless of what’s happening in the day, get a massive dream that that possesses you and keeps you going every day and just don’t stop.
David Ralph [50:06]
Okay, what’s the number one best way that our audience can connect with you, sir?
Ken Dunn [50:11]
Oh, it’s really simple. It’s Ken Dunn dot o RG. It has all my websites, all my companies and I’m more than happy to get on the telephone anytime and just talk to somebody if they need that. Perfect. We’ll have
David Ralph [50:23]
all the links on the show notes. Ken, thank you so much for spending time with us today. joining up those dots. And please come back again when you have more dots to join up because I do believe that by joining up the dots and connecting our past is the best way to build a future Mr. Ken Dunn Thank you so much.
Ken Dunn [50:39]
great talking to you, David. Have a fantastic day.
David Ralph [50:44]
When I really enjoyed that one, there was some deep conversation. It’s passionate stuffing fuse. Yes. And but the bottom line is Yeah, find your passion. And if you find your passion, you never work again. And so I’m going to go off to look at readers legacy Facebook thing I’m intrigued by Uber until tomorrow or the next day when we meet again, enjoy yourself, please keep on taking action. Please keep on going for the dream because he’s out there for you. You just have to look around enough and you will start finding it. Look after yourself. It’s David Ralph, speak again. Cheers,
bye. David doesn’t want you to become a faded version of the brilliant self you or wants to become. So he’s put together an amazing guide for you called the eight pieces of advice that every successful entrepreneur practices, including the two that changed his life. Head over to Join Up dots.com to download this amazing guide for free and we’ll see you tomorrow on Join Up Dots.