The Tropical MBA Podcast - Entrepreneurship, Travel, and Lifestyle

The TMBA Podcast - Location Independent Entrepreneurship

About the show

The Tropical MBA Podcast aims to show you the inside story of the people who are building "micro-multinational" businesses while they travel the world. We are interested in entrepreneurship, travel, internationalization, and personal freedom. Join 1,000's of listeners from all around the world, every Thursday morning.

Episodes

  • TMBA547: How Coronavirus is Disrupting the Events Industry

    May 28th, 2020  |  49 mins 46 secs
    bali, business, china, ecommerce, entrepreneurship, independent, lifestyle, location, philippines, profits, sales

    Here at the TropicalMBA podcast we have been inspired and motivated by the stories of resilience and adaptation that you’ve been sending us.

    One such story that we received recently resonated strongly with us, in part because it was about an industry that we have been working in for years.

    William Griggs created Virtual Reality Rental just over four years ago.

    He built a ten-person team that brought VR experiences to conferences, parties, and other corporate events across the United States.

    Then COVID-19 struck and it all collapsed literally overnight, forcing him to reduce his staff by more than half.

    William joins us today to share his strategy for waiting out the current uncertainty in the events industry, and how he's challenging his remaining team to grow into the new roles that are necessary for these times.

  • TMBA546: Adjusting to the 'New Normal'

    May 21st, 2020  |  55 mins 59 secs
    bali, business, china, ecommerce, entrepreneurship, independent, lifestyle, location, philippines, profits, sales

    What do you do when you lose over half your Annual Recurring Revenue and test positive for Coronavirus, all within 48 hours?

    Jim Huffman described this exact experience in a post on his personal blog titled "The Hardest Day of My Career".

    Jim is the CEO of GrowthHit and co-creator of FunnelTeardowns, and when we discovered his blog post we knew we had to talk to him.

    Jim joins us on today's podcast to share his insights on how to create a successful marketing agency that aligns with your lifestyle, the strategies he deployed to save his company after facing such a dramatic event, and his plans for the future in the 'new normal'.

  • TMBA545: Is Dropshipping Still a Valid Business Model?

    May 14th, 2020  |  42 mins
    bali, business, china, ecommerce, entrepreneurship, independent, lifestyle, location, philippines, profits, sales

    "Dropshipping" is one of the most used and abused terms in Digital Nomad circles.

    It refers to the practice of selling items without keeping inventory on hand, relying instead on a third-party manufacturer to ship the items directly to the customer.

    The term recently reached a much broader audience through a widely-shared piece in Wired magazine by Sirin Kale titled “‘It’s bullshit’: Inside the weird, get-rich-quick world of dropshipping”.

    On today's podcast, Dan and Ian weigh in with some of their own thoughts about the article, whether dropshipping can be used to create long-term success, and the pros and cons of the business model itself.

  • TMBA544: Should You Hire a General Manager?

    May 7th, 2020  |  43 mins 42 secs
    bali, business, china, ecommerce, entrepreneurship, independent, lifestyle, location, philippines, profits, sales

    In our book Before the Exit, we reflected on many 'thought experiments' that we wished we had run before we sold our business in 2015.

    One of those experiments was called 'The Mediocre CEO Test', which questioned whether it was smarter to hire someone to run your business than it was to sell it.

    Today's guest did just that.

    JP Ji is the founder of Pro Teeth Guard, an eCommerce business that manufactures custom dental mouth guards.

    When JP decided to shift his focus away from Pro Teeth Guard, he chose to hire a General Manager to take over the day-day-day operations of the business.

    In today's podcast, you'll hear why JP decided to hire a general manager, the challenges of finding the right candidate, and why that relationship ultimately didn't pan out.

  • TMBA543: Taking the Entrepreneurial Leap

    April 30th, 2020  |  48 mins 44 secs
    bali, business, china, ecommerce, entrepreneurship, independent, lifestyle, location, philippines, profits, sales

    One of the most widely read and recommended books about business management is Gino Wickman’s 'Traction'.

    When Gino’s team reached out to say that he had a new book coming out that was aimed at helping would-be and early-stage entrepreneurs, we jumped at the opportunity to invite Gino on to the podcast to talk about it.

    On today's podcast, Ian sits down with Gino to discuss the ideas raised in his new book, ‘Entrepreneurial Leap’.

    In this wide-ranging conversation, you'll hear Gino's thoughts on the value of going to college, whether you should be following the passion or the money, and why not everyone is cut out to be an entrepreneur.

  • TMBA542: The Entrepreneurmobile Revisited

    April 23rd, 2020  |  54 mins 37 secs
    bali, business, china, ecommerce, entrepreneurship, independent, lifestyle, location, philippines, profits, sales

    Whether you’re saving a runway for a new business, or you need to cut your expenses to the bone due to the current economic climate, we know a lot of people are being forced to make some difficult financial decisions right now. 

    On today's podcast, we are revisiting one of our most popular concepts, and something that we've discussed many times over the years as a sure-fire way for an entrepreneur to live a little more frugally.

    We're talking once again about the "Entrepreneurmobile", or how you can get a reliable car that is generally inexpensive to maintain and fix, and that can save you a lot of money. 

    In this episode, we take a comprehensive look at what makes a great Entrepreneurmobile, which cars you should avoid, 10 cars that are great deals under $10K, and some luxury vehicles that are extremely affordable as well. 

  • TMBA541: An American Based in China Shares His Perspective on the Coronavirus Outbreak

    April 16th, 2020  |  51 mins 13 secs
    bali, business, china, ecommerce, entrepreneurship, independent, lifestyle, location, philippines, profits, sales

    One of the things we love about our online community of entrepreneurs, the Dynamite Circle, is that the members of that community are not only incredibly globalized but oftentimes deeply ingrained in the cultures and economics of the places they live.

    Brian Miller is the founder of Easy China Warehouse, a third-party logistics company that helps entrepreneurs who sell online consolidate products in China.

    Brian was in a rare position where he was able to see the Coronavirus unfolding as he lived and worked in Shenzhen, China.

    Brian joins us today to talk about his experience in China as the virus began to spread, the trajectory that China has been on since January, and what the future could possibly look like for the rest of the world.

  • TMBA540: Are You Generating Income or Wealth?

    April 9th, 2020  |  59 mins 44 secs
    bali, business, china, ecommerce, entrepreneurship, independent, lifestyle, location, philippines, profits, sales

    In this week's episode, we've invited one of our favorite bloggers and thinkers to pull up a virtual chair and share some of the burning issues he’s been writing about.

    Nat Eliason is the founder and CEO of a marketing agency called Growth Machine, as well as the author of a fantastic blog at NatEliason.com.

    Nat is not only a successful agency owner, but he has some incredibly fascinating theories about entrepreneurship and scaling a multi-million dollar agency that we were just so excited to pick his brain about.

    Nat joins us this week for a wide-ranging discussion, where he opens up about his aversions to "struggle porn", the distinction between money and wealth, and the true nuts and bolts of running a successful agency.

  • TMBA539: Weathering the Storm

    April 2nd, 2020  |  34 mins 1 sec
    bali, business, china, ecommerce, entrepreneurship, independent, lifestyle, location, philippines, profits, sales

    One of the silver linings to the strange times that we've been living through in the past few weeks, is that we've been able to reach out to some of the brightest minds in our community and get a sense of how they have been responding to the crisis.

    Travis Jamison is no stranger to longtime listeners of this show. Travis is a bonafide SEO expert and the founder of Smash Digital. He has also successfully exited a business for 8 figures and is a very active investor as well.

    Travis recently shared something of an essay on Twitter that we felt captured a lot of our feelings about the current situation that we are all facing.

    We invited Travis on to the show today to explain those thoughts a bit further and to talk about how we might survive the economic downturn that so many of us are bracing for in the coming months.

  • TMBA538: Remaining Antifragile in the Wake of the Coronavirus

    March 26th, 2020  |  50 mins 5 secs
    bali, business, china, ecommerce, entrepreneurship, independent, lifestyle, location, philippines, profits, sales

    As we've been practicing social distancing, the majority of our discussions about business and entrepreneurship keep coming back to the COVID-19 outbreak.

    In this week's podcast, we've invited one of the most prescient minds about this topic on to the show. Taylor Pearson is a long time friend of the show and has been sounding alarms about the coronavirus for much longer than most.

    Like us, Taylor is a huge fan of the writings of Nassim Taleb and joins us today to talk about why Taleb's writing has been so relevant in thinking about the ongoing crisis, the global economic impact of events like this, and what the future might hold for us in a post-outbreak world.

  • TMBA537: How Will Coronavirus Affect Your Business?

    March 19th, 2020  |  40 mins
    bali, business, china, ecommerce, entrepreneurship, independent, lifestyle, location, philippines, profits, sales
  • TMBA536: Are You Really "Unemployable"?

    March 12th, 2020  |  46 mins 39 secs
    bali, business, china, ecommerce, entrepreneurship, independent, lifestyle, location, philippines, profits, sales

    In today's episode, we are reaching into the TMBA mailbag yet again and responding to some interesting questions and comments we've received from our listeners.

    There is a word that gets tossed around in the entrepreneurial community, and it's actually something that is worn as a sort of badge of honor.

    We see it on t-shirts and social media, and it's usually represented by entrepreneurs who have rejected working for an employer at a job where they held no equity.

    But is it really a good thing to be "Unemployable?"

    You'll hear our thoughts about that on today's episode, as well as some insight for people who have become frustrated by meet-ups and networking events that aren't providing enough value.

  • TMBA535: Bringing Your Remote Team Together

    March 5th, 2020  |  44 mins 46 secs
    bali, business, china, ecommerce, entrepreneurship, independent, lifestyle, location, philippines, profits, sales

    One of the biggest challenges of running a remote team is communication.

    After all, "watercooler conversations" rarely happen when your team is scattered across the globe.

    Joe Magnotti is the co-founder of Empire Flippers, a marketplace for buying and selling online businesses.

    Together with his partner Justin Cooke, they have built a team of over 70 people who are entirely location independent and are located all over the world.

    Joe joins us on today's podcast to talk about his experience managing a remote team, and how holding twice-annual team retreats has been paramount to the success of Empire Flippers.

  • TMBA534: The Re-Readables: The Millionaire Fastlane

    February 27th, 2020  |  52 mins 34 secs
    bali, business, china, ecommerce, entrepreneurship, independent, lifestyle, location, philippines, profits, sales

    We've recently been revisiting some of our favorite business books on this podcast as part of a series we like to call "The Re-Readables".

    What makes this week's installment of that series so special is that we have been joined by the author of the book himself.

    M.J. DeMarco wrote The Millionaire Fastlane in 2010, and since then, the book has continued to grow in popularity.

    The basic premise of the book is that the most successful people have found ways to step off of the "slow lane" or the "sidewalk" to join the "fast lane", usually through entrepreneurial endeavors.

    M.J. joins us today to talk about the legacy of The Millionaire Fastlane, why it is still as relevant today as it was when it was released, his thoughts on the FIRE (Financial Independence, Retire Early) movement, and much more.

  • TMBA533: From Cryptocurrency to Cowboy Boots

    February 20th, 2020  |  42 mins 25 secs
    bali, business, china, ecommerce, entrepreneurship, independent, lifestyle, location, philippines, profits, sales

    Will Roman is a veteran entrepreneur who has worked in a number of different fields including eCommerce, physical products, software, and even cryptocurrency.

    At the end of last year, Will made the decision to leave his crypto exchange business to start Chisos, a product company that manufactures and sells designer cowboy boots.

    Will joins us on the podcast this week to talk about his stressful exit from that company, why he decided to start Chisos, what he has learned from his first year of manufacturing boots, and a whole lot more. 

  • TMBA532: The Middle Game

    February 13th, 2020  |  40 mins 44 secs
    bali, business, china, ecommerce, entrepreneurship, independent, lifestyle, location, philippines, profits, sales

    We often talk about the "1,000 Day Principle" or the idea that it will take about 1,000 days to get a new business off the ground before it replaces the income from your 9-to-5.

    But what happens after those 1,000 Days?

    Chris Cage's 1,000 Day Journey has been well-documented on previous episodes of this podcast.

    Chris is the founder of Greenbelly, a company that manufactures high-quality meal bars for hikers. Greenbelly is now over 5 years old, and Chris is facing a whole new set of challenges.

    Chris joins us this week to talk about how he has handled the "Middle Game" of entrepreneurship. You'll hear about his first full-time hire, how he has created a repeatable process for getting clients, why he is taking time away from the business, and much more.