CBNationSocial Entrepreneurship

IAM067 – Social Entrepreneur Helps Bring Change to Workspace Members & the Less Fortunate

Podcast Interview with Mike Thakur of The Work Lodge

Originally from the U.K., we're not sure if it was brisket or J.R. Ewing that brought him here, but he got to Texas just as fast as he could. Retail, B2B, Non-Profits and Hostage Negotiation, Mike's background isn't quite as varied as the hairstyles he wears (he's bald) and sure, he's a little workaholic, probably eats too much curry & mixes beer with Sprite (it's called a ‘Shandy' people), but he eats, sleeps, and dreams about how we can change lives, for the Members (and their businesses) as well as the less fortunate in society.

  • CEO Hack: Google Stuff e.g. Calendar & Notes
  • CEO Nugget: Chase greatness. Be amazing. Do the right thing. Don't underestimate the change you can make.
  • CEO Defined: Leading well for staff and also an inspiration for Workspace members

Website: http:/www.theworklodge.com
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/mikethakur/

Full Interview

 


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Transcription:

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Intro 0:02

Do you want to learn effective ways to build relationships, generate sales and grow your business from successful entrepreneurs, startups, and CEOs without listening to a long, long, long interview? If so, you've come to the right place. Gresham Harkless values your time and is ready to share with you precisely the information you're in search of. This is the I AM CEO Podcast.

Gresham Harkless 0:28

Hello, hello, hello, this is Gresh from the I AM CEO Podcast and I have a very special guest on the show today. I have Mike Thakur of The Work Lodge. Mike, it's awesome to have you on the show.

Mike Thakur 0:37

Well, hey, I appreciate the opportunity and looking forward to.

Gresham Harkless 0:40

Me too, me too. I'm looking forward to hearing more about you. So first, I wanted to introduce Mike so you can learn a little bit more about him and all the awesome things that he's doing. So Mike is originally from the UK. And we're not sure if it was brisket or J.R. Ewing that brought him here. But he got to Texas just as fast as he could. Retail, B2B, Non-Profits, and Hostage Negotiation. That's Mike's background isn't quite varied as the hairstyles he wears. He's bald. And sure he's a little workaholic probably eats a little too much curry and mixes beer with Sprite. It's called a Shandy. But he eats sleeps and dreams about how he can change lives for the members of The Work Lodge and their businesses as well. As well as less fortunate and society. Mike, are you ready to speak to the I AM CEO community?

Mike Thakur 1:24

I'm ready.

Gresham Harkless 1:25

Awesome, awesome, awesome. Well, I wanted to expand a little bit more on your CEO story and hear what led you to start your business.

[restrict paid=”true”]

Mike Thakur 1:31

So as you can tell from my background, I've done a few different things in life. And most recently, before this, I was the Chief Operating Officer for a security company. We were based here in Houston, and most of our clients were not in Houston. So I used to travel quite a lot. And when I was home, we didn't have a centralized office, we were famous for kidnap for ransom and extortion.

So a lot of what we did was pretty sensitive. And so I worked from home for about four or five years. And it slowly just got worse and worse. And so one day I thought I'm gonna go get somebody to work from, and I can't go sit in Starbucks or do something like that, because of the kind of conversations we have. And so I wound up in, what is now, I would call a traditional executive suite-type space.

So I didn't know executive suites existed, and I didn't know anything about commercial real estate. I'm standing in this office, and the ladies looking at me telling me it's 800 bucks a month and all the walls of drywall, the doors, solid wood, and I'm standing there thinking, this is what solitary confinement must feel like, I will I pay 800 bucks a month to do this. All right, hold on, when I said, Honey, I don't know a whole lot about real estate. But I gotta believe I couldn't do a worse job than that.

So I'm thinking I should go build something. And so we started to think about it. And it was about six months or so before one day, I stumbled across a co-working space. I was out in Seattle doing a case out there. And I see this co-working space and I walk in I'm standing there thinking oh my word, these guys have built exactly what I was talking about. You know, there are people in there. And so I called my wife and I said, Listen, I think it really was a good idea. Like, I've just seen one, and somebody's paying to use it.

So, you know, we were worried about whether could we get customers or not. But evidently, there are a few other folks like me out there that think it's a good idea. So then I start looking around, and I find another one in Portland, but I was going there next. So I went to check that place out. And it was completely different, more of a glorified coffee shop. But there were people in that. And that was the biggest worry for me was, you know, I knew what I wanted to build, I knew I wanted to create something that was just inspiring, but I just wasn't sure what folks really spend money to be there on, or whether it was just, you know, a good idea, but not good enough.

So after seeing a couple of guys, you know, figuring out how to make it work, I can also, you know, think we should do this. So we went out to look for some space, and the rest is history.

Gresham Harkless 3:44

Awesome, awesome, awesome. He is ideas like you not sure if your idea actually has customers or people that actually gonna pay for it. But you being able to see those co-working spaces, you saw that, hey, these are people that are actually interested in that. So I think it's awesome to kind of hear your story and how you evolved into actually building your company. So I wanted to drill down a little bit deeper and hear a little bit more about what you guys are doing to help support the members and the people that are coming to The Work Lodge.

Mike Thakur 4:06

Yeah, so obviously, co-working is kind of a fashionable thing right now, I don't know, I'd describe us as a true co-working space. We're kind of a hybrid. And we think of ourselves as a workspace provider. And so that entails some co-working and some private suites. And until some team size suites, you know, the meeting and conference rooms.

So we've got a wide range of services there. And then we're in the process of layering onto that whole suite of professional services so that we can remove as much friction as possible, and let them just focus on business. As long as they're doing what they should be doing. You know, we take care of the rest. And I always tell people, even if we only save you an hour a week, we just keep you back more than a working week over the course of the year. If you're good at what you do that can translate hopefully into a whole lot more money than the investment you're making in the office space that you take from us or the coworking membership or whatever you want to call it.

So, you know we do a little bit of stuff with social tolls and fun and that kind of thing, but we don't go crazy with it, we want to be respectful of the fact that they're working on their business, and we don't want to be just running a frat house, like some places have kind of turned up. So we're a little bit, we're a little bit classier than that, that's probably a good way to put it. And, it seems to be working. I mean, people resonate, they're like what we do, and they're like, they're very organic, you know, subtle nudging, that our staff is trained in helping make those connections and helping them figure out who the other guy is down the hallway that's dealing with the same thing they are or who just did deal with it.

And now they can give them some wisdom and some, some guidance and, and just seeing those connections get made, you know, especially between people from completely different industries, that would never happen if they wanted a space like this.

Gresham Harkless 5:44

Yeah, and then a lot of what you're saying, it kind of sounds like you created an environment where you know, people have the opportunity to get that quote-unquote, maybe unofficial mentorship, but still has that have the opportunity to be able to learn from other people that might have been going through things, but also get a really cool environment by which they can work and, and do all the things to be successful, and not have to worry about all these additional things that can suck up time, but worry about building your business and working on your business. So I love kind of like that motto. And you might already be touched on it a little bit. But I usually ask for what I call a secret sauce or kind of like, what makes your organization unique. And I know you kind of touched on it. Is there anything else you can kind of point to this as this is what makes you guys unique?

Mike Thakur 6:21

Yeah, I think honestly, what makes us unique is the heart of the business and the DNA behind it. So I'm not a real estate guy. You know, if anything, you know, I'm a ministry guy, I spent years in nonprofits and used to be a preacher. And so I think we approach people and serving and helping people from that perspective, rather than just from a, hey, here's it, here's a target on your back with $ sign. Let me extract a few more bucks out of you. We just don't play that nickel-and-dime game at all.

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And I think that translates through, you know, we're built on core values. We talk constantly with the staff about being authentic, being passionate, you know, being generous with our time and our knowledge, being humble. And being a little bonkers having a lot of personalities. I think it translates really clearly in the way that we interact with our members and in the way that we look after them. And so is it tangible? Is it something that's easy, and replicable? Probably not. You know, it takes a lot of work and a lot of effort. But does it make us a little different? Yeah, I think I think fundamentally, our approach to people.

And what we're doing with the business is completely different. I mean, at the end of the day, we're not really a for-profit business, we created the business under a nonprofit at the same time. And so The Work Lodge for-profit funds, The Gabriel Foundation, nonprofit, and we're very, very open about that, you know, when you walk in, I'm looking at a 10-foot by 15-foot mural on my wall with pictures of smiling kids from the first orphanage we built in India last year, you can't walk past him without missing it, it's right in front of you. And I think that's very different than a company that's just out there to make a buck. If I wanted to make a buck as easy ways to do it then this.

Gresham Harkless 7:51

Yeah, well, I mean, I felt like that's when things go to an entirely different level is when you have, you know, you have the dollars and cents. And that's important when you're building a business or even running a nonprofit. But were you able to have that kind of heart-centered pool that you talked about, where you have a reason or a very strong purpose for the foundation that you guys have, that's when things to me go to another level, you get probably that awesome environment that you guys have in place?

Mike Thakur 8:15

Right

Gresham Harkless 8:15

But what I wanted to do was switch gears a little bit and ask you for what I call a CEO hack. And CEO hack could be an app or a book, but it is something that makes you more effective and efficient as a business owner.

Mike Thakur 8:25

Yeah, you know, I saw the question when I got the little cheat sheet, you know when we first talk, and I've been kind of backward and forwards on what would be this awesome nugget that would just make everybody's world rocking, you know, I don't know that I really have anything super special here. But I use, I use my Google stuff, real heavy. Gmail, Calendar, you know, the notes, that's my go-to. And it's simple. It keeps me organized. I know it's not sexy, and everybody probably uses it too. But I stick with it. It tells me where I'm supposed to be. It tells me what I'm supposed to be doing. It helps me get my thoughts in there. And it's always at my fingertips. And that's about as good as I've gotten that one.

Gresham Harkless 9:03

There's a good app, I swear by my Google Calendar and everything else as well. So sometimes it's the simple things that help you keep the peace of mind as you talked about with your staff and everybody there where you don't have to worry about all those additional things, whether you lost something or whether that email went through because everything is kind of taken care of from a Google standpoint. So I think that's a phenomenal CEO hack. And it may not be sexy, but I use it just as strongly. So I love that CEO hack. So now I wanted to ask you for what I call a CEO nugget. And this might be more of a word of wisdom or piece of advice that you might have for a CEO, entrepreneur, or business owner.

Mike Thakur 9:36

So when we talk to our staff, and try and help them understand what success looks like, you probably saw it in my email signature. You know, I tag everything as being amazing. And for us if we get all of our core values, right, all of the DNA of who we are, it's going to deliver this and whatever amazing this is. And so I think when I'm thinking about you know, a golden nugget or some advice to other business owners or entrepreneurs, you know, Chase greatness.

Don't, don't chase average, don't chase mediocrity don't do a crappy job, don't just taste the dollars if you decide to make a buck to go just go work for someone else. I mean, can you do it? Yes. Is it the right thing to do? And I think that's the key. No, it's not. So do the right thing. Be great, just be amazing. That would be my best advice.

Gresham Harkless 10:22

I love that. And that definitely hits home, you know, don't be average, just go on and do and be the best that you can be any kind of blaze trails and make an impact upon the world. So I think that's awesome. And now my absolute favorite question which I, call kind of like the definition of being a CEO. So I want to ask you, specifically, what does being a CEO mean to you?

Mike Thakur 10:43

So I think for me, there's, there are two sides to this coin, for my staff and my team, it means leading Well, and, I want to make sure that, that I invest in them in every way that I can if I can coach them better if I can encourage them more if I can spur them on to just be better versions of themselves. That's my job as their leader is to just bring out the best in them. And I think second, you know, from that, and it kind of rolls on a little bit. It's also for our members, and the folks we serve and help, you know, inevitably, they see me in action, they see me interacting with other people.

And so how can I inspire them, obviously, it's not my job to, you know, to coach every single member we've got, I'm not saying that, but just by our example, by what we do, and how we do it, can I inspire them to just sort of shoot a little higher, to think a little different to go beyond themselves or out of their comfort zone. I'm very conscious that you know, anybody in a leadership role, and especially as a CEO of a company, where you interface with people on a regular basis, people are going to watch, so pay attention to what they're watching.

Gresham Harkless 11:46

I love it. I love it, in my view, creating that environment in that culture, I think that definitely kind of spills down whether or not you know, you're doing direct mentorship or direct advice, or if somebody is just, you know, at your space as well, because that definitely helps that is. So, Mike, I truly appreciate you for taking some time out of your schedule. What I want to do was pass you the mic so to speak, to see if there's anything additional, you want to let our readers and our listeners know, and how best people can get a hold of you and hear more about The Work Lodge.

Mike Thakur 12:12

Well, I think if you want to know more about The Work Lodge, you can go check out the website, just theworklodge.com. We've got Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and all that kind of fun stuff. So if you do social, you can find us there too. I think anything additional kind of as a last thing thought, you know, entrepreneurship amazing, and I think business can change the world if it's done the right way. And if we set the right kind of goals. And so I think my best advice to a young entrepreneur, or someone thinking about starting something up is don't underestimate what impact you can have and what difference you can make.

Even if we only change, you know, one of our taglines is workspace changing lives. And sometimes, you know, I wonder if it's a little corny, but we actually really do you know, we change the lives of our members when we help them be more successful and, you know, encourage them when they're dying. They connect with other people that can help them change the lives of the folks we help at the nonprofit, do I change millions of lives? No. But does it really matter? If I change one this year or two, it's one or two more than last year, and it made a lot of difference to them.

So even as you may be starting out, thinking about doing something, think bigger, think beyond yourself, and think about what impact can this business have. How can I change something in my community? What can I do to make a difference? You know, we don't all have to be world changes, but just touching one or two lives, changing one or two people's mindset, sparing them onto something that could become a world-changing event or business or whatever. It's an incredibly humbling kind of perspective, when you think in those terms, rather than how to make an extra 1000 bucks this month, you know, the money will come if everything else is where it should be. So we just don't worry about a whole lot.

Gresham Harkless 13:47

Makes perfect sense. And I think it's awesome what you you're doing and what you all are doing. And sometimes when you create that ripple effect, even if it's just one or two people, those one or two people can turn it into three people turn into 10 People next thing you know, you know you have made an impact and made a dent in the world. So I appreciate you for all you're doing Mike and I appreciate the time obviously took today I hope you have a phenomenal rest of the day.

Mike Thakur 14:08

Awesome. Thanks, Gresh

Outro 14:10

Thank you for listening to the I AM CEO Podcast powered by Blue 16 Media. Tune in next time and visit us at iamceo.co

I AM CEO is not just a phrase, it's a community. Be sure to follow us on social media and subscribe to our podcast on iTunes Google Play and everywhere you listen to podcasts, SUBSCRIBE, and leave us a five-star rating grab CEO gear at www.ceogear.co. This has been the I AM CEO Podcast with Gresham Harkless. Thank you for listening.

Intro 0:02

See also  IAM1388 - Bring Change to Workspace Members and the Less Fortunate

Do you want to learn effective ways to build relationships, generate sales and grow your business from successful entrepreneurs, startups, and CEOs without listening to a long, long, long interview? If so, you've come to the right place. Gresham Harkless values your time and is ready to share with you precisely the information you're in search of. This is the I AM CEO Podcast.

Gresham Harkless 0:28

Hello, hello, hello, this is Gresh from the I AM CEO Podcast and I have a very special guest on the show today. I have Mike Thakur of The Work Lodge. Mike, it's awesome to have you on the show.

Mike Thakur 0:37

Well, hey, I appreciate the opportunity and looking forward to.

Gresham Harkless 0:40

Me too, me too. I'm looking forward to hearing more about you. So first, I wanted to introduce Mike so you can learn a little bit more about him and all the awesome things that he's doing. So Mike is originally from the UK. And we're not sure if it was brisket or J.R. Ewing that brought him here. But he got to Texas just as fast as he could. Retail, B2B, Non-Profits and Hostage Negotiation. That's Mike's background isn't quite varied as the hairstyles he wears. He's bald. And sure he's a little workaholic probably eats a little too much curry and mixes beer with Sprite. It's called a Shandy. But he eats sleeps and dreams about how he can change lives for the members of The Work Lodge and their businesses as well. As well as less fortunate and society. Mike, are you ready to speak to the I AM CEO community?

Mike Thakur 1:24

I'm ready.

Gresham Harkless 1:25

Awesome, awesome, awesome. Well, I wanted to expand a little bit more on upon your CEO story and hear what led you to start your business.

Mike Thakur 1:31

So as you can tell from my background, I've done a few different things in life. And most recently, before this, I was the Chief Operating Officer for a security company. We were based here in Houston, most of our clients were not in Houston. So I used to travel quite a lot. And when I was home, we didn't have a centralized office, we were famous for kidnap for ransom and extortion. So a lot of what we did was pretty sensitive. And so I worked from home for about four or five years. And it slowly just got worse and worse. And so one day I thought, you know, I'm gonna go get somebody to work from, and I can't go sit in Starbucks or do something like that, because the kind of conversations we have. And so I wound up in a, what is now you know, I would call traditional executive suite type space. So I didn't know executive suites existed, I didn't know anything about commercial real estate. I'm standing in this office, and the ladies looking at me telling me it's 800 bucks a month and all the walls of drywall, the doors, solid wood, and I'm standing there thinking, this is what solitary confinement must feel like, I will I pay 800 bucks a month to do this. All right, hold on, when I said, Honey, I don't know a whole lot about real estate. But I gotta believe I couldn't do a worse job than that. So I'm thinking I should go build something. And so we started to think about it. And it was about six months or so before one day, I stumbled across a co-working space. I was out in Seattle doing a case out there. And I see this co working space and I walk in I'm standing there thinking oh my word, these guys have built exactly what I was talking about. You know, there's people in there. And so I called my wife and I said, Listen, I think it really was a good idea. Like, I've just seen one and, and somebody's paying to use it. So, you know, we were worried about could we get customers or not. But evidently, there's a few other folks like me out there that think it's a good idea. So then I start looking around, and I find another one in Portland, but I was going there next. So I went to check that place out. And it was completely different, more of a glorified coffee shop. But but there was people in that. And that was the biggest worry for me was, you know, I knew what I wanted to build, I knew I wanted to create something that was just inspiring, but I just wasn't sure what folks really spend money to be there on, or whether it was just, you know, a good idea, but but not good enough. So after seeing a couple of guys, you know, figuring out how to make it work, I can also, you know, think we should do this. So we went out look for some space, and the rest is history.

Gresham Harkless 3:44

Awesome, awesome, awesome. He is ideas like you not sure if your idea actually has customers or people that actually gonna pay for it. But you being able to see those co working spaces, you saw that, hey, these are people that are actually interested in that. So I think it's awesome to kind of hear your story and how you evolved into actually building your company. So I wanted to drill down a little bit deeper and hear a little bit more about what you guys are doing to help support the members and the people that are coming to The Work Lodge.

Mike Thakur 4:06

Yeah, so obviously, co working is kind of a fashionable thing right now, I don't know, I'd describe us as a true co working space. We're kind of a hybrid. And we think of ourselves as being a workspace provider. And so that entails some co working and until some private suites. And until some team size suites, you know, the meeting and conference rooms. So we've got a wide range of services there. And then we're in the process of layering onto that a whole suite of professional services so that we can remove as much friction as possible, and let them just focus on business. As long as they're doing what they should be doing. You know, we take care of the rest. And I always tell people, even if we only save you an hour a week, we just keep you back more than a working week over the course of the year. If you're good at what you do that can translate hopefully into a whole lot more money than you know the investment you're making in the office space that you take from us or the coworking membership or whatever you want to call it. So, you know we do a little bit of stuff with social tolls and fun and that kind of thing, but we don't go crazy with it, we want to be respectful of the fact that they're working on their business, and we don't want to be just running a frat house, you know, like some places have kind of turned up. So we're a little bit, we're a little bit classier than that, that's probably a good way to put it. And, and it seems to be working. I mean, people resonate, they're like what we do, and they're like, they're very organic, you know, subtle nudging, that our staff are trained in helping make those connections and helping them figure out who the other guy is down the hallway that's dealing with the same thing they are or who just who just did deal with it. And now they can give them some wisdom and some, some guidance and, and just seeing those connections get made, you know, especially between people from completely different industries, that would never happen if they wanted a space like this.

Gresham Harkless 5:44

Yeah, and then a lot of what you're saying, it kind of sounds like you created an environment where you know, people have opportunity to get that quote-unquote, maybe unofficial mentorship, but still has that have the opportunity to be able to learn from other people that might have been going through things, but also get a really cool environment by which they can work and, and do all the things to be successful, and not have to worry about all these additional things that can suck up time, but worry about building your business and working on your business. So I love kind of like that motto. And you might already touched on it a little bit. But I usually ask for what I call a secret sauce or kind of like, what makes your organization unique. And I know you kind of touched on it. Is there anything else you can kind of point to this as this is what makes you guys unique.

Mike Thakur 6:21

Yeah, I think honestly, what makes us unique is the heart of the business and the DNA behind it. So I'm not a real estate guy. You know, if anything, you know, I'm a ministry guy, I spent years in nonprofits used to be a preacher. And so I think we approach people and serving and helping people from that perspective, rather than just from a, hey, here's it, here's a target on your back with $ sign. Let me let me extract a few more bucks out of you. We just don't play that nickel and dime game at all. And I think that translates through, you know, we're built on core values. We talk constantly with the staff about being authentic, being passionate, you know, being generous with our time and our knowledge, being humble. And being a little bonkers having a lot of personality. I think it translates really clearly in the way that we interact with our members in the way that we look after them. And so is it tangible? Is it something that's easy, replicable? Probably not. You know, it takes a lot of work and a lot of effort. But does it make us a little different? Yeah, I think I think fundamentally, our approach to people. And what we're doing with the business is completely different. I mean, at the end of the day, we're not really a for profit business, we created the business under nonprofit at the same time. And so The Work Lodge for profit funds, The Gabriel Foundation, nonprofit, and we're very, very open about that, you know, when you walk in, I'm looking at a 10 foot by 15 foot mural on my wall with pictures of smiling kids from the first orphanage we built in India last year, you can't walk past him without missing it, it's right in front of you. And I think that's very different than a company that's just out there to make a buck. If I wanted to make a buck as easy ways to do it than this.

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Gresham Harkless 7:51

Yeah, well, I mean, I felt like that's when things go to an entirely different level is when you have, you know, you have the dollars and cents. And that's important when you're building a business or even running a nonprofit. But were you able to have that kind of heart centered pool that you talked about, where you have a reason or a very strong purpose for the foundation that you guys have, that's when things to me go to another level, you get probably that awesome environment that you guys have have in place.

Mike Thakur 8:15

Right

Gresham Harkless 8:15

But what I wanted to do was switch gears a little bit and ask you for what I call a CEO hack. And CEO hack could be an app or a book, but it is something that makes you more effective and efficient as a business owner.

Mike Thakur 8:25

Yeah, you know, I saw the question when when I got the little cheat sheet, you know, when we first talk, and I've been kind of backwards and forwards on what would be this awesome nugget that would just make everybody's world rockin, you know, I don't know that I really have anything super special here. But I use, I use my Google stuff, real heavy. Gmail, Calendar, you know, the notes, that's my go to. And it's simple. It keeps me organized. I know it's not sexy, and everybody probably uses it too. But I stick with it. It tells me where I'm supposed to be. It tells me what I'm supposed to be doing. It helps me get my thoughts in there. And it's always at my fingertips. And that's about as good as I've gotten that one.

Gresham Harkless 9:03

A there's a good app, I swear by my Google Calendar and everything else as well. So sometimes it's the simple things that help you keep the peace of mind, like you talked about with your staff and everybody there where you don't have to worry about all those additional things, whether you lost something or whether that email went through because everything is kind of taken care of from a Google standpoint. So I think that's a phenomenal CEO hack. And it's may not be sexy, but I use it just as strongly. So I love that CEO hack. So now I wanted to ask you for what I call a CEO nugget. And this might be more of a word of wisdom or piece of advice that you might have for a CEO, entrepreneur or business owner.

Mike Thakur 9:36

So when we talk to our staff, and try and help them understand what does success look like, and you probably saw it in my in my email signature. You know, I tag everything with be amazing. And for us if we get all of our core values, right, all of the DNA of who we are, it's going to deliver this and whatever amazing this is. And so I think when I'm thinking about you know, a golden nugget or some advice to other business owners or entrepreneurs, you know, Chase greatness. Don't, don't chase average, don't chase mediocrity don't don't do a crappy job, don't just taste the dollars if you decide to make a buck to go just go work for someone else. I mean, can you do it? Yes. Is it the right thing to do? And I think that's the key. No, it's not. So do the right thing. Be great, just be amazing. That would be my best advice.

Gresham Harkless 10:22

I love that. And that definitely hits home, you know, don't be average, just go on and do and be the best that you can be and kind of blaze trails and make make an impact upon the world. So I think that's awesome. And now my absolute favorite question which I, call kind of like the definition of being a CEO. So I want to ask you, specifically, what does being a CEO mean to you?

Mike Thakur 10:43

So I think for me, there's, there's two sides of this coin, for my staff and my team, it means leading Well, and, you know, I want to make sure that, that I invest in them in every way that I can, if I can coach them better, if I can encourage them more, if I can spur them on to just be better versions of themselves. That's my job as their leader is to just bring out the best in them. And I think second, you know, from that, and it kind of rolls on a little bit. It's also for our members, and the folks we serve and help, you know, inevitably, they see me in action, they see me interacting with other people. And so how can I inspire them, obviously, it's not my job to, you know, to coach every single member we've got, I'm not saying that, but just by our example, by what we do, and how we do it, can I inspire them to just sort of shoot a little higher, to think a little different to go beyond themselves or out of their comfort zone. I'm very conscious that you know, anybody in a leadership role, and especially as a CEO of a company, where you interface with people on a regular basis, people are going to watch, so pay attention to what they're watching.

Gresham Harkless 11:46

I love it. I love it, in my view, creating that environment in that culture, I think that definitely kind of spills down whether or not you know, you're doing direct mentorship, or direct advice, or if somebody is just, you know, at your your space as well, because that definitely helps that is. So, Mike, I truly appreciate you for taking some time out of your schedule. What I want to do was pass you the mic so to speak, to see if there's anything additional, you want to let our readers and our listeners know, and how best people can kind of get a hold of you and hear more about The Work Lodge.

Mike Thakur 12:12

Well, I think if you want to know more about The Work Lodge, you can go check out the website, just theworklodge.com. We've got Facebook, and LinkedIn, and Instagram and all that kind of fun stuff. So if you do social, you can find us on there too. I think anything additional kind of as a last thing thought, you know, entrepreneurships amazing, and I think business can change the world, if it's done the right way. And if we set the right kind of goals. And so I think my best advice to a young entrepreneur, or you know, someone thinking about starting something up is don't underestimate what impact you can have and what difference you can make. Even if even if we only change, you know, one of our taglines is workspace changing lives. And sometimes, you know, I wonder it's a little corny, but but we actually really do you know, we change the lives of our members when we help them be more successful and, you know, encourage them when they're dying. They connect with other people that can help them we change the lives of the folks we help to the nonprofit, do I change millions of lives? No. But does it really matter? If I change one this year or two, it's one or two more than last year, and it made a whole lot of difference to them. So even as you may be starting out, thinking about doing something, think bigger, think beyond yourself, think about what impact can this business have? How can I change something in my community? What can I do to make a difference? You know, we don't all have to be world changes, but just touching one or two lives, changing one or two people's mindset, sparing them onto something that could become a world changing event or business or whatever. It's an incredibly humbling kind of perspective, when you think in those terms, rather than how to make an extra 1000 bucks this month, you know, the money will come if everything else is where it should be. So we just don't worry about a whole lot.

Gresham Harkless 13:47

Makes perfect sense. And I think it's awesome what you what you're doing and what you all are doing. And sometimes when you create that ripple effect, even if it's just one or two people, those one or two people can turn it to three people turn into 10 People next thing you know, you know you have made an impact and made a dent in the world. So I appreciate you for all you're doing Mike and I appreciate the time obviously took today and I hope you have a phenomenal rest of the day.

Mike Thakur 14:08

Awesome. Thanks Gresh

Outro 14:10

Thank you for listening to the I AM CEO Podcast powered by Blue 16 Media. Tune in next time and visit us at iamceo.co I AM CEO is not just a phrase, it's a community. Be sure to follow us on social media and subscribe to our podcast on iTunes Google Play and everywhere you listen to podcasts, SUBSCRIBE, and leave us a five-star rating grab CEO gear at www.ceogear.co. This has been the I AM CEO Podcast with Gresham Harkless. Thank you for listening.

Transcribed by https://otter.ai

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