EP 20: Putting Profit First & Learning From Mistakes with Mike Michalowicz

Aug 27, 2018


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Mike Michalowicz

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EP 20: Putting Profit First & Learning From Mistakes with Mike Michalowicz

Welcome to Do It Scared™ podcast! In every episode of this podcast, we’ll talk about how to face your fears, overcome obstacles, and create a life you love! Today, you’ll hear from Mike Michalowicz, bestselling author of Profit First, about why you need to put profit first, killing your ego, and learning from your biggest mistakes.

Mike is a bestselling author, business owner, and amazing dad who has been a serial entrepreneur since college. He’ll dig into everything from putting profit first to toothpaste. (Yes, really.) He’s transparent about the ways in which he’s totally messed up, which is so important as a reminder that nobody’s path is always smooth, and that your mistakes are a learning opportunity rather than a reason to give up!

Speaking of being transparent, I want to share a little secret: even though I run a blog called Living Well Spending Less, I hate all things money-related and thought I’d find Mike’s book boring! But as soon as I started listening to the audio version, I loved it. Starting to implement his profit-first methodology has already been a game-changer for my business.

In case you aren’t familiar with the idea, the profit first system makes sure you can pay yourself, pay your taxes, and so on. In traditional accounting, your profit is your income minus your expenses. In profit first, you set aside your profit right away. From there, whatever is left over is what you have left to spend in your business. If you take profit last, your expenses will expand to eradicate whatever potential profit you could have had.

We’ll also talk about the role of fear. Mike explains that fear is a powerful motivator for survival, and played a key role in making his business successful. With that said, there’s a point at which fear becomes detrimental. Fear can be physically detrimental, and at a certain point, stress needs to become confidence instead. Tune in to hear more about all of these topics and many more!


[05:02] – Mike introduces himself, talks about the 1987 film Wall Street, and explains his history as an entrepreneur.
[07:42] – We learn about how Mike destroyed his family’s finances, including a heartbreaking scene involving his young daughter.
[10:35] – One of the things that Ruth loves most about Profit First is that it’s simple and straightforward, even if it isn’t always easy.
[11:19] – How does profit first methodology work, why is it such a game-changer for businesses, and what sets it apart?
[15:56] – Ruth talks about Mike’s metaphor of using toothpaste.
[19:15] – Mike talks about a survey he ran in which he asked people whether they’re good at cramming for tests.
[21:53] – What are some of the hardest lessons that Mike has learned from his business?
[25:25] – Mike discusses how he knows that he’s at the right place in terms of the number of employees.
[27:46] – We hear more about the role of fear in Mike’s life and business, and how he moved past his fear.
[32:30] – Mike talks about his current project, gushing that the proof of his brand new book, Clockwork, just came in!
[35:15] – Neither working 90+ hours a week nor working 10 hours a week while drinking on the beach is healthy, Mike points out.
[38:24] – What kind of reader is the right fit for Mike’s new book?
[39:31] – Mike talks about the best piece of advice he has ever received.
[42:53] – We hear about how Mike practices self-care in his life and his business, and how he protects his confidence.
[46:37] – If you struggle as an entrepreneur and you have fear, there’s a term for you: you’re a human being.