Imitation is the best way to success and other entrepreneur advice with author Nathan Latka

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Millennial entrepreneur, podcaster, and author Nathan Latka shares how his love of pizza hut, his friends and willingness to put his money and savings where his mouth is got him what he wanted as a 5 year old child. Latka also previews his new book "How to Be A Capitalist Without Any Capital” and the strategies and systems that have grown his many ventures. 

In Nathan's money story you will learn:

  • Why it's so important to let children make decisions

  • Why he feels like his parents helped to make him an entrepreneur

  • Why he feels like his success is due to his parents never telling him no (and when they did instead)

  • What he learned at the age of 5 by being given the option between Pizza Hut for dinner or a sleep over with friends

In Nathan’s money lesson you will learn:

  • Why he feels like the idea of only focusing on one thing isn't practical

In Nathan's everyday money tip you will learn:

  • How you can use an app to book a hotel room for just a few hours during a day trip rather than spending money for an entire night

In My Take you will learn:

  • Take 5 minutes each day this week and create a system for something that happens regularly

  • By letting your children make choices- you empower them

Episode Links:

Check out Nathan's website -

www.NathanLatka.com

Follow Nathan!

 
Millennial entrepreneur, podcaster, and author Nathan Latka shares how his love of pizza hut, his friends and willingness to put his money and savings where his mouth is got him what he wanted as a 5 year old child. Latka also previews his new book "How to Be A Capitalist Without Any Capital” and the strategies and systems that have grown his many ventures. In this Financial Grownup podcast episode you will learn a very important tip on how you can help to raise a successful child. #RaisingChildren #SuccessTips #Author

Millennial entrepreneur, podcaster, and author Nathan Latka shares how his love of pizza hut, his friends and willingness to put his money and savings where his mouth is got him what he wanted as a 5 year old child. Latka also previews his new book "How to Be A Capitalist Without Any Capital” and the strategies and systems that have grown his many ventures. In this Financial Grownup podcast episode you will learn a very important tip on how you can help to raise a successful child. #RaisingChildren #SuccessTips #Author

 

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Transcription

Nathan Latka:
You have to copy aggressively, and once you copy what your competitors have already paid to learn, right, you're getting free money there. They've already paid to learn it. Then you add your own twist at the end, and that's when people create a lot of success.

Bobbi Rebell:
You're listening to Financial Grownup with me, certified financial planner, Bobby Rebell. Author of How to Be a Financial Grownup, and you know what? Being a grownup is really hard, specially when it comes to money, but it's okay, we're gonna get there together. I'm gonna bring you one money story from a financial grownup, one lesson, and then my take on how you can make it your own. We got this.

Bobbi Rebell:
Controversial advice from our guest millennial entrepreneur, podcaster, and author, Nathan Latka. He is everywhere, so if you haven't heard of him yet, that's probably gonna change pretty fast. He is high energy and will get you motivated to make more money after listening to him. This guy is all about systems and strategies. Welcome all, so glad to have you here. As our returning listeners know, we talk to high achievers about key money related events in their life that played a role in growing up to be financial grownups. Lessons learned and simple everyday money tips you can use right away to make your life richer, all in around 15 minutes. Big treat today. Nathan Latka founded his first company at the ripe old age of 19 with just 119 dollars in the bank. He now considers himself retired, but I would question that given how much this now 29 year old has on his plate between his podcast, his new bestselling book, How to Be a Capitalist Without Any Capital, a TV show in development with CNBC that he's gonna tell us about, and oh, so much more, here is Nathan Latka.

Bobbi Rebell:
Hey Nathan Latka, you're a financial grownup, welcome to the podcast.

Nathan Latka:
Bobbi, thank you for having me on.

Bobbi Rebell:
I am so excited because I have in my hand an early copy, and it may be out by the time this happens, of your new book, How to Be a Capitalist Without Any Capital: The Four Rules You Must Break to Get Rich. And let me tell you, I think you are the Tim Ferriss of your generation, that is a huge compliment because I'm a massive Tim Ferriss fan. So congratulations on the book.

Nathan Latka:
Well, we'll see what happens. The publisher, which is the biggest I think in the world, Random House, they go, "Nathan, we don't know if we like this book because it's not timeless. These strategies, you know, we can't sell a thousand of this book a decade from now." I'm going, "Yeah, it's urgent." The first person who purchases will have the biggest advantage because these things will not work five, 10 years from now. And this is true about life.

Bobbi Rebell:
You are very specific and a lot of the tools and methods that you talk about, and will even drop some names of some websites that I was not really aware of, are really awesome, some apps I should say. So for example, we were referencing the four hour work week, so it is very much of the moment, but I want to take a step back in time Nathan, to a story that you mentioned briefly in your book, but we are going to expand on, and it is your money story. So people know that I am a huge Cheesecake Factory fan, you were a fan of Pizza Hut. So we're gonna talk about Pizza Hut for your story. Go for it.

Nathan Latka:
I remember I was like five years old, we were in this blue mini van, my mom loved it, and we were driving home and I go, "Mom, dad, can we go to pizza tonight for dinner?" Which was like a treat for me, and I also had a sleep over coming up, and yeah, I think that weekend, where there was four or five playmates I had coming over, and both of these things obviously cost money. They're dinner or I had my friends over, my parents have to pay to feed all of them, and then take them home in the morning and clean up messes. So my mom basically wanted to say no to pizza hut or no to the sleepover, and so she gave me, instead of saying no to either, she just gave me a choice and said, "Nathan, you know you can either choose, we can either choose to do pizza tonight or do the sleepover, but we can't do both. Right, 'cause they both cost money." And I thought for a second in the backseat and then said back, "Mom, can I choose to get into my piggy bank and take us pizza out tonight?" And they laughed after that realizing what I was doing, and ultimately both decided to take us out to dinner and I still did the sleepover, but the lesson there is clear, which is, give your kids decisions, not answers.

Bobbi Rebell:
And also, you as a child wanted to find a solution, which in this case, and maybe you would not say this as an adult, was to tap your savings. Maybe as an adult you would let's say, try to up your income.

Nathan Latka:
Yeah, or all kinds of things, right? I mean, the trick is there, is you're not giving your children the answer, you're setting up a decision and you're teaching them to build that decision making muscle. This is very rare in today's world, in my opinion.

Bobbi Rebell:
So tell we, what is the takeaway for our audience there looking back? What did you learn and how does it apply to your life now?

Nathan Latka:
Well look, I mean, today I'm very different than I was when I was five years old, right? I mean, I have many, many different things going on, and so one of the things I talk about is, and I live this out every day is, there's a lot of people, in college for example, you're forced to essentially pick a major, right, when you're a sophomore, or you want to be forced into one thing. And this doesn't make a lot of sense to me, 'cause think about a bridge your going over, right, in your city. If it had one point of failure when the winds hit 20 miles per hour, you don't want to be going over that bridge, but a lot of us build our lives around a single point of failure. So the idea that you should only focus on one thing, and there's a lot of bestselling business books that sell this concept.

Bobbi Rebell:
I think there's actually a book called, The ONE Thing.

Nathan Latka:
The ONE Thing and Essentialism, because it sells. It's a really good story, and by the way, I love those guys. I know them all, but it's not practical, and that's because you never want a single point of failure. You want to always be throwing spaghetti noodles up the wall, you don't know which are gonna stick, and then when you see which ones stick, you double down on those.

Bobbi Rebell:
Let's talk about your everyday money tip, because this is something more and more people are traveling, we're not always working in an office, whether we're moving around, whether we work from home or we're going to see clients or traveling with our clients, and there is downtime, which can be wasted time.

Nathan Latka:
Yeah, so I travel a lot and like to be efficient, and I would usually, I'd always go to New York on day trips, and I used to have to buy a hotel room because when I landed at 7:00 or 8:00 or 9:00 AM in the morning, I had to go take a shower somewhere. I would leave the hotel room and only use it for four or five hours. It was a total waste of money for 300, 400 bucks. Now there's this app called Recharge which I use, where when you land in any city really, you can go on Recharge and book an amount of hours in a hotel room. So you go in, get some sleep, get a shower, do you makeup, do your hair, and get ready to go to that meeting.

Nathan Latka:
The old concept in this book is, the folks that are really wealthy in the world today, they climbed a certain ladder, and any time someone climbs a ladder to power or wealth, they then remove rungs from that ladder. They make it more complex so that no one else can climb it and challenge them. And so this group has sold us on four rules, and ultimately these are rules that you shouldn't believe that you must break, and we've talked about a few of them. The first, you don't want to focus on one thing, right? The second is, you should totally feel comfortable copying your competitors.

Bobbi Rebell:
Which has been used. To give examples in your book of how this has been used so successfully by some of the biggest companies in the world.

Nathan Latka:
But Bobbi, I bet your audience listening right now when they hear this, they're thinking, "Ugh, I feel dirty. It feels unethical. It feels slimy to copy my neighbor." I bet you they feel that. This is the problem with this tactic. People do this all the time 'cause it's smart, but humans, your natural emotion when you hear the word copy, is it feels bad. But here's, I mean, Facebook rips off every Snapchat feature, right? Steve Jobs went into the Xerox research lab and pulled a bunch of research out of there and basically copied that and that's what made the Lisa. That's what made the Mac and the iPhone and things like this. So you have to copy aggressively, and once you copy what your competitor has already paid to learn, you're getting free money there. They've already paid to learn it, then you add your own twist at the end, and that's where people create a lot of success.

Bobbi Rebell:
One of the things that I love about this book Nathan is the detail. You made a decision to put a lot of your own personal data out there. Tell me about that approach to writing this book.

Nathan Latka:
Yeah, I mean, it's very risky, right? Because the stuff will get old after four or five years, so again, this book is urgent. Say, you know, in page six I have my income statement and my tax return. My actual corporate tax return from 2013, where I was in my dorm room at 21, and we did 939,378 dollars in sales, and I started hiring my team. I put my board deck on page 35, and then I get into more personal finance stuff, right? Where I talk about how I used my very small Instagram following to get a free Rolls-Royce with an email striped on page 118. Or I used, how I did my first real estate deal, it was a 280 thousand dollar deal, where I only had to put essentially five grand down, and it [inaudible 00:08:31] 16 hundred dollars a month. That PNL is on page 149. So there's all kinds of examples here and there's not a big theme. They don't really connect. They're really individual stories that your audience can pick up, flip through and learn to drive their own side hustle and create some more financial independence.

Bobbi Rebell:
So what scares you? You have such wonderful confidence. You are how old now?

Nathan Latka:
29, just turned 29.

Bobbi Rebell:
The ripe old age of 29. What have you not done that you are hesitant about?

Nathan Latka:
Nothing really scares my in business, but I'll tell you what scares me in life. I don't know if anyone in your audience has ever gotten mono, but it basically knocks you out. You have to sleep.

Bobbi Rebell:
So it's your health.

Nathan Latka:
Well, no, no, no. Health is one thing, but let me be more specific. When you're laying in bed for seven days straight, and your brain is the brain of an entrepreneur, you actually start to go a little insane because your brain goes a million miles an hour in that quiet time, but your body can't keep up with it. So my biggest fear is I get to some point in life where my mind is still going a million miles an hour, but my body can't keep up and execute.

Bobbi Rebell:
We'll leave it there, but I want to hear from you. Where can people find out more about all of your ventures?

Nathan Latka:
Yeah, well we're excited. We just signed a TV deal with CNBC, which we didn't talk about. We're very excited about that. It is called Million Dollar Road Trip. So it will be like Shark Tank on the street, basically me walking up to random companies on the street, and in under 20 minutes or less flipping up my checkbook and buying the whole business or investing on the spot.

Bobbi Rebell:
It's kind of like a cross between The Profit and Shark Tank, and by the way, we've had both Barbara Corcoran and Kevin O'Leary on this podcast.

Nathan Latka:
Both great, love them both. So anyways, we're very excited. Again, this book guys, it'll get old. You can't wait. It's one of those things, like the first person who reads it has the biggest advantage. So you want to grab it now. You go to nathanlatka.com/book to get it, and the best way to stay in touch with me, I am on Twitter every day, I'm @NathanLatka. That's L-A-T-K-A.

Bobbi Rebell:
Thank you so much Nathan. This has been amazing.

Nathan Latka:
Bobbi thanks.

Bobbi Rebell:
Oh my gosh, Nathan's energy is contagious. Here we go. Financial grown up tip number one. Nathan is all about systems because he is at a point where things would literally fall apart almost instantly if he didn't have those systems in place, but for most of us, myself included, we can muddle by. So they're kind of haphazard because we don't have to have, but we would be so much better off if we had the right systems. And we know we'd be better off with them in place. Even something as simple as automatic reordering of coffee that we drink at home, that we make at home that we ran out of, but we don't have a system in place to reorder it, and then you know what happens. We go out to get the expensive coffee at the coffee shop, but we're too busy. So take five minutes each day this week, okay? Everyone do this. Take five minutes each day this week and create system for something small but that happens regularly, like the coffee. So if you run out of coffee all the time or you run out of whatever it is that you use on a regular basis, or it could be bill paying, bills that come every month, automate that. DM me on the socials and let me know what you did. I need ideas myself. On Instagram @bobbirebell1 and on Twitter @bobbirebell. You can also email at hello@financialgrownup.com.

Bobbi Rebell:
Financial Grownup tip number two. I love what Nathan learned from his parents that he talked about in his money story, because by not telling children what is happening when it comes to a money decision, but letting them make a choice, you empower them. This can apply to so many other situations in our personal lives and in our careers. Empower others to make decisions by giving them the specific options and the outcome that would happen based on the choice they make, and let them run with it.

Bobbi Rebell:
Okay everyone, Nathan's book is called How to Be a Capitalist Without Any Capital: The Four Rules You Must Break to Get Rich. It is an intense book everyone, but it is good. It is very specific. He literally gives you screen grabs of data that is very personal to him. I was a little shocked but he put it out there, and good for him, and good for us 'cause we learn from it. Go check it out along with his podcast The Top, and of course, big thanks to Nathan Latka for helping us all get one step closer to being financial grownups.

Bobbi Rebell:
Financial Grownup with Bobbi Rebell is edited and produced by Steve [Steward 00:12:57] and is a BRK Media production.