Jeff Adamson is a former Canadian wrestler who co-founded SkipTheDishes out of a basement in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan with nothing but some pocket lint and a dream of building a successful Canadian startup.
Now, Jeff is pursuing his next startup venture as Co-Founder and Chief Merchant Officer at Neo Financial where we’re forging partnerships that reimagine how brands personalize their engagement with customers.
What You’ll Learn
13:54 On his experience with wrestling
Jeff Adamson talks about his experience with wrestling. He says that growing up in Canada, which is a hockey fanatical country, the pressure is too much from a very young age. His parents signed him up for a lot of after-school activities and he thinks he stuck with wrestling because he was the most interested and committed to the training.
For Jeff Adamson, wrestling is like life in that there is nothing as grueling or eye-opening as wrestling because it prepared him for everything he was going to face growing up. And even though wrestling is played out individually, you do make a team that becomes a family and they have to go through so much adversity that ends up being a bond, a very important support structure.
Wrestling was something that helped him to have strength mentally and in his relationships to be able to pursue the things that he believed in and achieve his dreams.
27:38 On doing the thing that sucks first
33:50 Ask yourself: what kind of man you wanna be?
Jeff Adamson mentions that there are many people who define certain goals to be achieved but never achieve them and nothing happens. That for most of these people, having something written in their calendar doesn’t mean a commitment, it’s something that comes and goes and if you don’t meet it and someone questions you, you just say you were busy and nothing happens.
Jeff Adamson says that he does not want to be this type of person because he considers it dishonest, yes obviously dishonesty is for other people but mainly with oneself and that would make him feel bad because in the end he is not fulfilling the goals that he has defined to be a better person.
36:20 Not going at the big goals alone and having people to answer to
Jeff Adamson responds to Larry’s question about how he feels about not going after these goals alone and having people who have your best interest at heart that you have to answer to, and he says that for him it’s one of the most important things. He says the first step is to find something that you can achieve that you feel better about doing and that improves your life and the lives of those around you and the second step is to find someone to help you achieve those goals.
Jeff Adamson mentions that he has not met a single millionaire, athlete, celebrity etc. who has made it to the top by doing it alone. In fact he says he has more respect for people who recognize the people who help them get to the top of their careers. For Jeff, it’s the joy of sharing this and it’s seeing everyone who came with you in this journey.
41:41 Humble yourself and find the right people
Jeff Adamson says that one must humble yourself and find the right people to join you on the journey you decide to take to improve yourself. Whether it’s starting a business, going on a diet, reaching a goal… but you must find people you respect and who are not afraid to risk their relationship with you when it comes to confronting you and holding you accountable on whether or not you are committed to your goals and doing what you need in order to achieve them. They must be people who will help you achieve your goals through accountability and that is for your well-being. You should respect these people because you will value the feedback they give you.
47:11 The pursuit of the goal is what is meaningful
Jeff Adamson says that when a person sets a goal and along the way falters, before judging and applying tough love, one must ask if that goal was achievable for that person. For example, for one person who drinks moderately, quitting drinking is very achievable; for another person whose social base is to drink more regularly, quitting drinking may be like climbing Mount Everest without any preparation. So what Jeff Adamson recommends is to celebrate the decision to pursue that goal and how much or how little is achieved celebrate it and rethink achievable goals. Remember that failure is part of the process, and he would rather know the wins or losses than be a zombie through life with no defined goals, let alone not knowing the wins or losses.
56:05 On teaching the pursuit of goals
Larry told Jeff Adamson that one of his sons wanted to learn about resilience, but he has a hard time reading, so to help him accomplish this goal and read a book on resilience, Larry marked dates on the calendar for reading progress and at the end he will reward him with $500. Larry asks Jeff Adamson what he thinks about this.
Jeff Adamson says that is ok giving him a reward for an activity that he doesn’t like or that he struggles with because then there is a reward, he is going to get something beneficial for him and he will find a way to meet this goal, but he says that what he would do would be for the reward not to be financial but related to the topic that his son wants to learn and that Larry wants to teach him. For example, if his son wants to go to Italy, the goal should not be to save money, but to learn Italian or to learn about Italian cooking or if they are going to climb a mountain, to know what physical condition they should be in. The same applies to Larry’s son, if he wants to teach him about resilience for all the challenges he may face in life, a better way to teach him is to go on an adventure and he can apply the concepts learned in the book, not so much the financial reward (because it has nothing to do with the topic).
1:00:22 Being a better man for his family
Jeff Adamson says that wrestling, competition and business have helped him to be constantly improving as a person in all areas and relationships. And one of the most important lessons is to know that if he and his family want to achieve something, they must involve more people and work together, it’s a team effort. He doesn’t think he has it all figured out, but if there is one thing he is very clear about, it is the limits he sets: if something is not right at work, he doesn’t transfer it to conflicts at home and vice versa. He knows that in life there are ups and downs, but if there is conflict at home he must be a rock in the company, if there are conflicts at work, he must be a rock for his family, so he is very clear about the role he plays and stresses the importance of humility of not getting on a moral ground and believing that he knows everything or that everything is figured out. He is always trying to improve himself as a person so that this is replicated in his wife, his children and his company.
Jeff Adamson’s Links
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