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Podcast Interview with Jamar Washington

Jamar Washington aka J Haleem, is a four-time author, motivational speaker, certified professional coach, facilitator, and trainer.

Jamar went from working for $8.00 an hour at the Hampton Inn to earning 5 figures as a Commercial Photographer in just a few years. He was able to accomplish all this while being a convicted felon.

He shares his mantra “I Won’t Starve” and his work in government contracting and helping minority business owners.

Jamar shares his insights on entrepreneurship, self-employment, and the dedication required to lead a company.

Website: jhaleem.com

Instagram: iamjhaleem

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Transcription:

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Jamar Washington Teaser 00:00

Work with market research and strategic partnerships. So those two things they are important. You the government is and then the strategic partnership piece when we talk about if you can get around that. We partner you with prime contractors who might already be working.

Intro 00:17

Are you ready to hear business stories and learn effective ways to build relationships, generate sales, and level up your business from awesome CEOs, entrepreneurs, and founders without listening to a long, long, long interview?

If so, you've come to the right place. Gresh values your time and is ready to share with you the valuable info you're in search of. This is the I AM CEO Podcast.

Gresham Harkless 00:45

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 Jamar Washington aka J Haleem. Jamar, excited to have you on the show.

Jamar Washington 00:54

I'm excited to be here. I appreciate it. Thank you.

Gresham Harkless 00:57

Yeah, absolutely. I appreciate you for all the awesome things that you're doing and, of course, taking some time out with us today. And, of course, before we jump into the interview, I want to read a little bit more about J Haleem so you can hear about all the awesome things that he's doing. And Jamar, aka J Haleem, CPC is a four-time author, motivational speaker, certified professional coach, facilitator, and trainer.

He went from working for $8.00 an hour at the Hampton Inn to earning 6 figures as a Commercial Photographer in just a few years. He was able to accomplish all this while being a convicted felon. While working for $8.00 an hour, he developed his mantra, I Won't Starve, which was a catalyst for him to leave his job after one year only.

Since then, he has been pardoned and now is a best-selling author and motivational speaker. And I was reading a little bit before we jumped into this, and one of the things I loved about Jamar and all the awesome things that he's doing is I'm a big believer in the words having power.

And to hear what he says about I Won't Starve that really resonated with me, but he also has his STARVE Podcast, which stands for Stand Tall and Reclaim Victory for Everyone, Everyday, actually. And he has loads and loads of information, whether it be on business information, entrepreneurship, what is entrepreneurship, what shouldn't be entrepreneurship, and how we need to talk more about that.

But one of the things I absolutely love, probably even more than that, is what he has for his academy as well too. The I Won't Starve Academy where he does stuff for kids, I think is so important to get continue to give forward to future generations.

So Jamar, J Haleem, excited to have you on the show. Are you ready to speak to the I AM CEO Community?

Jamar Washington 02:28

Most definitely. Most definitely. I didn't know that guy he was talking about.

[restrict paid=”true”]

Gresham Harkless 02:34

There you go. It's always cool when you get to hear, like, all the odds of things you're doing. We were talking a little bit before this. It's how we just go, go, go all the time. Sometimes, you know what I mean?

Jamar Washington 02:42

Yeah. No. It's a blur.

Gresham Harkless 02:44

Yeah. Absolutely. Before we jump more into what you're doing now, let's rewind the clock a little bit, hear a little bit more on how you got started with what I call your CEO story.

Jamar Washington 02:52

Oh, man. I became a felon when I was in college. And so when I graduated college, even though I was a great student, I couldn't get a job. So I immediately jumped into entrepreneurship. I was already dabbling in it in college, but, like, really seriously. Because you went to college, you think when you get out, you're gonna get a job and change around.

But that wasn't in the cards for me. And so I went really, hey, I'm gonna start a business, and I did. And, been in business ever since. Not with the same business, but that's been my thing ever since being an entrepreneur. Went through that phase, went through the whole Obama phase when the world could be held before COVID.

I had to sell my company. I had a commercial cleaning business, had to sell that, move back to South Carolina where I live, where I went to college and I became a felon. And that's where I had to go take an $8.00 hour job because the world had just reminded me that I was a felon.

I moved up North to DC. It was a lot less stringent than it was in the South. And so when I came back down South, I was like, oh, yeah. You're a felon. Start back, move, and go. So I went and took the job. I had to do what I had to do. But it took me about a little over a year, and I was out of there. I had already had a camera, and I was shooting, and I just had to make some money to pay some bills.

But once I got my foot in, got out of office space and ran with it, I'm on Starve was created. Because I just realized I remember going to a T.D. Jakes conference with my church in Orlando, and I just he was saying that he brought a real lion on the stage. A real one.

And it was in a cage, and he was like, this line has been caged his whole life. He said, so he should be able to walk around here without a problem. He said, but no. Everybody's still afraid that what he has in him might come out. He might remember who he is. And I started crying, man, because he said that some of y'all in here know that y'all got it in you, and you're not doing what you're supposed to be doing.

So literally, three months after that, I left my job, got a space, and never been back since. So and that was ten years ago. And it was just like, hey. I know I look. I've been in on a major scale. I know I can do this. And I won't starve came out. I wanted to throw the middle finger up at people, but I'm saved. I couldn't do that.

So that was my mantra. That was my way of just saying I won't starve. But even though it was out of a negative space, it started being positive for people. Whenever I would hashtag that and I will be doing it for and look, I just got this deal with this person. I just got to deal with this company. I won't start. But people started hitting me in the inbox like, man, that did something for me.

That's I'm like, okay. You ain't have no choice but to be positive at that point. And so it became my mantra and, still is to this day. But we turned into a 501(c)(3), in 2020 so we can make sure we're helping out the kids that went the wrong way or preventing them from going the wrong way when I did, which is in high school and college. So that's what we've been doing with that.

Gresham Harkless 05:46

Nice. I absolutely love that. So I wanted to drill down a little bit more. Can you take us a little bit more on how you serve in the community, how you're making that impact in in making that in, doing all the things you're doing?

Jamar Washington 05:56

Oh, man. So, again, I was just knocking out the park as a photographer once I figured it out. And one thing I got put into is doing government contract. I had a opportunity I didn't never know anything about government contract and definitely didn't see a wave for the bit for a photographer to do this.

But, a gentleman had told me I should go ahead and look into it. I did. And that's what catapulted me as a business owner in that space, working with the government, all the local Federal State Government in the area where I was at the time, and then started spreading out to different parts of the country.

But then I wanted to I found out I needed to help my people. I need to help the minority business owners, because we still don't know the avenues that they have for us in government contracting. It's still not enough. And so I got a chance to partner with my local city at the time to bring in more contractors like myself, and we wanted to boost up supply diversity numbers in that city.

And we were able to do that to two hundred six hundred new business owners coming in over five years span. And that's when my consultant space opened up from there. And I've been a full time consultant pretty much ever since. And, again, became a certified coach, certified trainer, because I just wanna be taken seriously.

I want people to know that I went through the proper training and everything like that to do that. But I've been in business for over 20 years. I know what I'm talking about when it come to business. Now I predate social media.

So it was just before everybody was saying that, hey, this is the thing to do. I was doing it when we were seeing people saying you were crazy to be an entrepreneur. But helping out the community, that's one of the biggest things that separate me from a lot of individuals.

One, my unique proposition is me, my experience, where I come from, me being an outlier, me coming from the crack era, me being, what you would consider a juvenile delinquent, and then being who I am now, that's something within itself.

But then when I learned what to do with the government space, I remember leaving Little Old, South Carolina and going to Long Beach, California to speak. And everybody in Long Beach looking at me like, wow, this is amazing information. I never knew anything about this.

I knew I had something because the South Carolina is not looked upon like LA counties, you know. But at the end of the day, the knowledge that I have and resource that I have is for me and for my people, and I'm consistently giving it to

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Gresham Harkless 08:19

Yeah. And I think that says so much in you being able to do that. Of course, being able to have those experiences. But I think so many times people can have those experiences good and not so good, and they don't wanna share them. But the ability to be able to share them really opens up the doors for many other people, many other opportunities, and I appreciate you for being able to do that.

So let me ask you this. So I know you touched a little bit upon, like, how you work with your clients. Is there anything additional that you could talk about, like, your process, how you help support them if they are for those government contracts, relationships, whatever it is, how that process works that you you make that happen.

Jamar Washington 08:52

Yeah. I can and we'll talk about all of it. Yeah. So with the government side of what we do, we do four different services. So, of course, start off, most people might just need certification. That's fine. It's a la carte service. You need to get certified depending upon what certifications you get. It's a price for that.

I have a team who will do that certification for you, get paperwork together. So maybe you're doing a contract. You might not need to get a certification if I can we can go ahead and work some things out, and that's gonna come down the line into the coaching portion. But we will do the paperwork for you, help you do a contract, we help you find contracts.

The next thing is the coaching side. We work with market research and strategic partnerships. So those three those two things they are important. You the government is and then the strategic partnership piece when we talk about if you can get around that, we partner you with prime contractors who might already be working.

So we have a relationship with banks. We have relationships with other kinds of alternative lenders that we can help our clients be able to get some funding so that they can sustain themselves while they're waiting on their, paycheck from the government.

Gresham Harkless 10:00

Nice. I appreciate you breaking out all those things down. So I wanted to switch gears a little bit, and I wanted to ask you for what I call a CEO hack. So this could be like an Apple book or even a habit that you have. But what's something that makes you more effective and efficient?

Jamar Washington 10:13

Oh, man. As I talk about relationships, man, I immediately wanna I wanna get to know people. I don't have a problem with sending dinner, lunch, breakfast, flowers, whatever. And I just understood how my networking is well too. I network different. I have a philosophy called being a cheese, and I've always put myself around places where everybody's my potential customer or client. Nobody's my competition. We waste time doing that.

So we go in some situations. I don't wanna be in a place with a bunch of consultants. I wanna go in a place where I'm the only consultant. I don't put myself in a room with a bunch of so now if I wanna learn something, yeah, by all means. But when it's time to get down to business, I'm probably gonna be the only consultant in the room where I'm trying to hood. You know what I mean.

Because I need everybody to be a potential prep, everybody being a potential fool. And so I always try to tell my people that, and I put it in my second book, which is my business this is like my manual here. You won't start key principles, entrepreneurial development. And this is teaching beginner business owners how to get to it.

Again, I went from eight thousand six figures from fourteen to seventeen is when I made the my six figures, never left back left from that. But it was just starting where I was, understanding how to do that, understanding the market research as I said. I wanted to know where those people was that needed me.

But more importantly, I found them they had the budget. So me breaking my neck, working for five or six hours for four hundred dollars for an event, I went straight to shooting headshots at law firms to get $1,200 for two hours. So it was just a different scenario once you do that research, and you start understanding who needs you.

And then the law firm referral system is so ridiculous. Hey, use him. Use him. Use him. And then, oh, you you use okay. Bring him over here. And then the money is no problem. Then doing that, and then, again, understanding how to network. And then also the strategic partnerships, making those partnerships. Working with a law firm got me to be able to do work with Amtrak, which is probably one of my biggest photography contracts I had, working seventeen cases for Amtrak, or Amtrak train accident. So these types of things, making those strategic partnerships is everything to me.

I might actually do trainings on that because you can't get to it alone. So trying to get to where you need to get to. But it's all about my relationships. But, yeah, I do whatever needs to be done. I've sent lunch and breakfast many a days. Instead of somebody just calling and aggravating you, yeah, we met very we met. I had a great time.

And now I'm sending somebody over there with some donuts and some apple to orange juice and some some coffee and all that other stuff like that. You gonna remember my email. You'll remember the food out there. I think you'll remember the food, right? So that's some that's a hack that people can use.

Gresham Harkless 12:53

They say the quickest way to this person's heart is to do their stomach. So that's a Southern thing. Actually, funny enough, all my family is from South Carolina, so that's where I don't know. That's where that came from.

Jamar Washington 13:02

Wow. Yeah. I spent a lot of my years in Columbia, South Carolina, but I did work all over the state.

Gresham Harkless 13:08

Yeah. Absolutely. Yeah. That's so true. I only laugh because the street I only laugh because you see it. You see it a lot. You see it all the time. And, I appreciate you again. That's why I was going through all the things you're doing and bringing that to life because I think a lot of times those conversations aren't being had.

And, hopefully, by having those conversations, getting those things out there, people will start realizing that, hey. Either I do need to go back to whatever position or opportunity that I had there, or maybe I need to go through the basic training of entrepreneurship and actually learn what this is and what this looks like and how I can put myself in better opportunities and better position to get those opportunities.

Jamar Washington 13:44

I totally agree. And, again, I'm down for self employment. We actually have something called The Self Employment Summit that we're doing with I Won't Starve Academy because it's for my babies, and I want the babies to know that you don't have to be an entrepreneur. But that don't mean you have to work for somebody either.

You can have a skill set, and we're gonna teach you how to do that. And we're going to, we don't charge them, we charge the trucking companies and everybody, all the people with the trades, because you gonna make some money off these babies, so y'all gotta pay to be here, and they gonna do it for free.

They're gonna pay to get training from you, so they wanna be a hairdresser. All that's great, but it's still a way to do that too. And they need to learn how to do that correctly, and understand it's okay to just be self employed, make your money, and not have a responsibility.

Gresham Harkless 14:27

Yeah. Absolutely. And I love that nugget. So I know you touched on this already, which is my absolute favorite question, the definition of what it means to be a CEO. And our goal is to have different quote unquote CEOs on their show. So, J Haleem, what does being a CEO mean to you?

Jamar Washington 14:41

As I say, somebody the one who's willing to take all the responsibility. CEOs have to step up. And CEOs take the hit when everything is going bad and get all the praise and accolades and everything is going good. A lot of people don't want it like that. They just want it to all be going good. CEOs don't get, we're not talking about the CEOs who hadn't started the company. We're not talking about the public companies that because those are glorified jobs.

I tell people that all the time. You know what I'm saying. They're high paying jobs, but they're jobs nevertheless. But we're talking about the person who started the company, founder, CEO, is cutting everybody check before you do. When the company's public, the CEO gets paid with everybody else. But when you're not that, you take all the hit, you to get paid last, you take all the responsibility.

Gresham Harkless 15:32

So, J Haleem, I truly appreciate that definition. Of course, I appreciate your time even more. What I want to do now is pass you the mic, so to speak, just to see if there's anything additional that you can let our readers and listeners know, and, of course, how best people can get a hold of you, find out about the podcast, the books, all the awesome things that you're working

Jamar Washington 15:49

I'm on all social media platforms. I Am J Haleem is my social media handle and jhaleem.com. You just put J Haleem in on Google, and that'll pop up.

Gresham Harkless 15:58

Absolutely. I truly appreciate that. Obviously, to make this even easier, we're gonna have the links and information in the show notes as well too so that everybody can get a hold of you, the podcast, the books, all the awesome things that you do for the community and beyond.

So thank you so much for being in our corner today, and I hope you have a phenomenal rest day.

Jamar Washington 16:15

Thank you, brother. I appreciate you guys.

Outro 16:18

Thank you for listening to the I AM CEO Podcast powered by CBNation and Blue16 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 Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, and everywhere you listen to podcasts. Subscribe and leave us a five star rating. This has been the I AM CEO Podcast with Gresham Harkless, Jr. Thank you for listening.

Title: Transcript - Mon, 01 Apr 2024 13:58:40 GMT

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Date: Mon, 01 Apr 2024 13:58:40 GMT, Duration: [00:16:58.30]

[00:00:00.10] - Jamar Washington

Work with market research and, strategic partnerships. So those two things there are important. You the government is and then the strategic partnership piece when we talk about if you can get around that. We partner you with prime contractors who might already be working.

[00:00:17.60] - Intro

Are you ready to hear business stories and learn effective ways to build relationships, generate sales, and level up your business from awesome CEOs, entrepreneurs, and founders without listening to a long, long, long interview? If so, you've come to the right place. Gresh values your time and is ready to share with you the valuable info you're in search of. This is the I am CEO podcast.

[00:00:45.00] - Gresham Harkless

Hello. 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 Jamar Washington AKA Jay Helene. Jamar, excited to have you on the show.

[00:00:54.60] - Jamar Washington

I'm excited to be here. I appreciate it. Thank you.

[00:00:57.70] - Gresham Harkless

Yeah. Absolutely. I appreciate you for all the awesome things that you're doing and, of course, taking some time out with us today. And, of course, before we jump into the interview, I want to read a little bit more about Jay Helene so you can hear about all the awesome things that he's doing. And Jamar, aka Jay Helene, CBC is a four time author, motivational speaker, certified professional coach, facilitator, and trainer. He went from working for eight dollars an hour at the Hampton Inn to to earning six figures as a commercial photographer in just a few years. He was able to accomplish all this while being a convicted felon. While working for eight dollars an hour, he developed his mantra, I won't starve, which was a catalyst for him to leave his job after one year only. Since then, he has been pardoned and now is a best selling author and motivational speaker. And I was reading a little bit before we jumped into this, and one of the things I loved about Jamar and all the awesome things that he's doing is I I'm a big believer in the words having power. And to hear what he says about I Won't Star that really resonated with me, but he also has his Star podcast, which stands for Stand Tall and Reclaim Victory for Everyone, Every every day, actually. And he has loads and loads of information, whether it be on business information, entrepreneurship, what is entrepreneurship, what shouldn't be entrepreneurship, and how we need to talk more about that. But one of the things I absolutely love, probably even more than that, is what he has for his his his academy as well too. The I Won't Starve Academy where he does stuff for kids, I think is so important to get continue to give forward to future generations. So Jamar, Jay Halim, excited to have you on the show. Are you ready to speak to the IMCO community?

[00:02:28.69] - Jamar Washington

Most definitely. Most definitely. I didn't know that guy he was talking about. There you go.

[00:02:34.19] - Gresham Harkless

It's always cool when you get to hear, like, all the odds of things you're doing. We were talking a little bit before this. It's how we just go go go all the time. Sometimes, you know what I mean?

[00:02:42.30] - Jamar Washington

Yeah. No. The smell of roses.

[00:02:44.30] - Gresham Harkless

It's a blur. Yeah. Absolutely. Before we jump more into what you're doing now, let's rewind the clock a little bit, hear a little bit more on how you got started with A Call Your CEO story.

[00:02:52.59] - Jamar Washington

Oh, man. I I became a felon when I was in college. And so when I graduated college, even though I was a great student, I couldn't get a job. So I immediately jumped into entrepreneurship. I was already dabbling in it in college, but, like, really seriously. Because you went to college, you think when you get out, you're gonna get a job and change around. But that wasn't in the cards for me. And so I went really, hey, I'm gonna start a business, and I did. And, been in business ever since. Not with the same business, but that's been my my thing ever since being an entrepreneur. Went through that phase, went through the whole Obama phase when the the world could be held before COVID. I had to sell my company. I had a commercial cleaning business, had to sell that, move back to South Carolina where I live, where I went to college and I became a felon. And that's where I had to go take a eight dollar hour job because the world had just reminded me that I was a felon. I moved up I moved up north to DC. It was a lot less stringent than it was in the south. And so when I came back down south, I was like, oh, yeah. You're a felon. Start back, move, and go. So I went and took the job. I had to do what I had to do. But it took me about a little over a year, and I was out of there. I had already had a camera, and I was shooting, and I just had to make some money to pay some bills. But once I got my foot in, got out of office space and ran with it, I'm on Starve was created. Because I just realized I remember going to a, T. D. Jakes conference with my church in Orlando, and I just he was saying that he brought a real lion on the stage. Mhmm. A real one. And it was in a cage, and he was like, this line has been caged his whole life. He said, so he should be able to walk around here without a problem. He said, but no. Everybody's still afraid that what he has in him might come out. He might remember who he is. And I started crying, man, because he said that some of y'all in here know that y'all got it in you, and you're not doing what you're supposed to be doing. So literally, three months after that, I left my job, got a space, and never been back since. So and that was ten years ago. And it was just like, hey. I I know I look. I've been in on a major scale. I know I can do this. And I won't starve came out. I I wanted to throw the middle finger up at people, but I'm saved. I couldn't do that. So that was my mantra. That was my way of just saying I won't starve. But even though it was out of a negative space, it started being positive for people. Whenever I would hashtag that and I will be doing it for a and look, I just got this deal with this person. I just got to deal with this company. I won't start. But people started hitting me in the inbox like, man, that that did something for me. That's that's I'm like, okay. You ain't have no choice but to be positive at that point. And so it became my mantra and, still is to this day. But we turned into a 05:01 c three, in twenty twenty so so we can make sure we're helping out the kids that went the wrong way or preventing them from going the wrong way when I did, which is in high school and college. So that's what we've been doing with with the on with that.

[00:05:46.89] - Gresham Harkless

Nice. I absolutely love that. So I wanted to drill down a little bit more. Can you take us a little little bit more on how you serve in the community, how you're making that impact in in making that in, doing all the things you're doing?

[00:05:56.80] - Jamar Washington

Oh, man. So, again, I was just knocking out the park as a photographer once I figured it out. And one thing I got put into is doing government contract. I had a opportunity I didn't never know anything about government contract and definitely didn't see a wave for the bit for a photographer to do this. But, a gentleman had had told me I should go ahead and look into it. I did. And that's what kinda catapulted me as a business owner in that space, working with the government, all the local federal state government in the area where I was at the time, and then started spreading out to different parts of the country. But then I wanted to I found out I needed to help my people. I need to help the minority business owners, because we we still don't know the avenues that they have for us in government contracting. It's still not enough. And so I got a chance to partner with my local city at the time to bring in more contractors like myself, and we wanted to boost up supply diversity numbers in that city. And we were able to do that to two hundred six hundred new business owners coming in over five years span. And that's when my consultant space opened up from there. And I've been a full time consultant pretty much ever since. And, again, became a certified coach, certified trainer, because I just wanna be taken seriously. I want people to know that I went through the proper training and everything like that to do that. But I've been in business for over twenty years. I know what I'm talking about when it come to business. Now I predate social media.

[00:07:23.30] - Gresham Harkless

So

[00:07:23.50] - Jamar Washington

it was just before everybody was saying that, hey, this is the thing to do. I was doing it when we were seeing people saying you were crazy to be an entrepreneur. But helping out the community, that's one of the biggest things that separate me from a lot of individuals. One, my my my unique proposition is me, my experience, where I come from, me being an outlier, me coming from the crack era, me being, what you would consider a juvenile delinquent, and then being who I am now, that's that's something within itself. But then when I learned what to do with the government space, I remember leaving Little Old, South Carolina and going to Long Beach, California to speak. And everybody in Long Beach looking at me like, wow, this is amazing information. I never knew anything about this. I knew I had something because the South Carolina is not looked upon like LA counties, you know. But at the end of the day, the knowledge that I have and resource that I have is for me and for my people, and I'm consistently giving it to

[00:08:19.80] - Gresham Harkless

Yeah. And I think that that that says so much in you being able to do that. Of course, being able to have those experiences. But I think so many times people can have those experiences good and not so good, and they don't wanna share them. But the ability to be able to share them really opens up the doors for many other people, many other opportunities, and I appreciate you for being able to do that. So let me let me ask you this. So I know you touched a little bit upon, like, how you work with your clients. Is there anything additional that, you know, you could talk about, like, your process, how you help support them if they are for those government contracts, relationships, whatever it is, how that process works that you you make that happen.

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[00:08:52.10] - Jamar Washington

Yeah. I can and we'll talk about all of it. Yeah. So with the government side of what we do, we do four four different services. So, of course, start off, most people might just need cert certification. That's fine. It's a la carte service. You need to get certified depending upon what certifications you get. It's a price for that. I have a team who will do that certification for you, get paperwork together. So maybe you're doing a contract. You might not need to get a certification if I can we can go ahead and work some things out, and that's gonna come down the line into the coaching portion. But we will do the paperwork for you, help you do a contract, we help you find contracts. The next thing is the coaching side. We work with market research and strategic partnerships. So those three those two things there are important. You the government is and then the strategic partnership piece when we talk about if you can get around that, we partner you with prime contractors who might already be working. So you we have a relationship with banks. We have relationships with other kind of alternative lenders that we can help our clients be able to get some funding so that they can sustain themselves while they're waiting on their, paycheck from the government.

[00:10:00.79] - Gresham Harkless

Nice. I appreciate you breaking out all those things down. So I wanted to switch gears a little bit, and I wanted to ask you for what I call a CEO hack. So this could be like an Apple book or even a habit that you have. But what's something that makes you more effective and efficient?

[00:10:13.60] - Jamar Washington

Oh, man. As I talk about relationships, man, I immediately wanna I wanna get to know people. I don't have a problem with sending dinner, lunch, breakfast, flowers, whatever. And I just understood how my networking is well too. I network different. I I I have a philosophy called being a cheese, and I've always put myself around places where everybody's my potential customer or client. Nobody's my competition. We waste time doing that. So we go in some situations. I don't wanna be in a place with a bunch of consultants. I wanna go in a place where I'm the only consultant. I don't put myself in a in a room with a bunch of so now if I wanna learn something, yeah, by all means. But when it's time to get down to business, I'm probably gonna be the only consultant in the room where I'm trying to hood. You know what I mean? Because I need everybody to be a potential prep, everybody being a potential fool. And so I always try to tell my people that, and I put it in my second book, which is my business this is like my manual here. You won't start key principles, entrepreneurial development. And this is teaching beginner business owners how to get to it. Again, I went from eight thousand six figures from fourteen to seventeen is when I made the my six figures, never left back left from that. But it was just starting where I was, understanding how to do that, understanding the market research as I said. I wanted to know where those people was that needed me. But more importantly, I found them they had the budget. So me breaking my neck, working for five or six hours for four hundred dollars for an event, I went straight to shooting headshots at law firms to get twelve hundred dollars for two hours. So it was just a different scenario once you do that research, and you start understanding who needs you. And then the the law firm referral system is so ridiculous. Hey, use him. Use him. Use him. And then, oh, you you use okay. Bring him over here. And then the money is no problem. Then doing that, and then, again, understanding how to network. And then also the strategic partnerships, making those partnerships. Working with a law firm got me to be able to do work with Amtrak, which is probably one of my biggest photography contracts I had, working seventeen cases for Amtrak, or Amtrak train accident. So these types of things, making those strategic partnerships is everything to me. I might actually do trainings on that because you can't get to it alone. So trying to get to where you need to get to. But it's all about my relationships. But, yeah, I do whatever needs to be done. I've sent lunch and breakfast many a days. Instead of somebody just calling and aggravating you, yeah, we met very we met. I I had a great time. And now I'm sending somebody over there with some donuts and some apple to orange juice and some some coffee and all that other stuff like that. You gonna remember my email? You'll remember the food out there. I think you'll remember the food. Right? So that's that's some that's a hack that people can use.

[00:12:53.20] - Gresham Harkless

They say the quickest way to this person's heart is to do their stomach. So that's a southern thing. Actually, funny enough, all my family is from South Carolina, so that's where I don't know. That's where that came from.

[00:13:02.50] - Jamar Washington

Wow. Yeah. I I spent a lot of my years in Columbia, South Carolina, but I did work all over the state.

[00:13:08.00] - Gresham Harkless

Yeah. Absolutely. Yeah. That's so true. I only laugh because the street I only laugh because you see it. You see it a lot. You see

[00:13:13.79] - Jamar Washington

it all the time.

[00:13:14.89] - Gresham Harkless

And, I appreciate you again. That's why I was going through all the things you're doing and and bringing that to life because I think a lot of times those conversations aren't being had. And, hopefully, by having those conversations, getting those things out there, people will start realizing that, hey. Either I do need to go back to whatever position or opportunity that I had there, or maybe I need to go through the basic training of entrepreneurship and actually learn what this is and what this looks like and how I can put myself in better opportunities and better position to get those opportunities.

[00:13:44.20] - Jamar Washington

I totally agree. And, again, I'm down for self employment. We actually have something called the self employment summit that we're doing with I Won't Start Academy because it's for my babies, and I want the babies to know that you don't have to be an entrepreneur. But that don't mean you have to work for somebody either. You can have a skill set, and we're gonna teach you how to do that. And we're going to, we don't charge them, we charge the trucking companies and everybody, all the people with the trades, because you gonna make some money off these babies, so y'all gotta pay to be here, and they gonna do it for free. They're gonna pay to get training from you, so they wanna be a hairdresser. All that's great, but it's still a way to do that too. And they need to learn how to do that correctly, and and understand it's okay to just be self employed, make your money, and not have a responsibility.

[00:14:27.29] - Gresham Harkless

Yeah. Absolutely. And I I love that nugget. So I I know you you touched on this already, which is my absolute favorite question, the definition of what it means to be a CEO. And our goal is to have different quote unquote CEOs on their show. So, Jay Helene, what does being a CEO mean to you?

[00:14:41.79] - Jamar Washington

As I say, somebody the one who's willing to take all the responsibility. CEOs have to step up. And CEOs take the hit when everything is going bad and get all the praise and accolades and everything is going good. A lot of people don't want it like that. They just want it to all be going good. CEOs don't get, we're not talking about the CEOs who hadn't started the company. We're not talking about the public companies that, you know, okay, that because those are glorified jobs. I tell people that all the time. You know what I'm saying? They're high paying jobs, but they're jobs nevertheless. But we're talking about the person who started the company, founder, CEO, is cutting everybody check before you do. When the company's public, the CEO gets paid with everybody else. But when you're not that, you take all the hit, you to get paid last, you take all the responsibility.

[00:15:32.29] - Gresham Harkless

So, JL, I truly appreciate that definition. Of course, I appreciate your time even more. What I want to do now is pass you the mic, so to speak, just to see if there's anything additional that you can let our readers and listeners know, and, of course, how best people can get a hold of you, find out about the podcast, the books, all the awesome things that you're working

[00:15:49.00] - Jamar Washington

I'm on all social media platforms. I am Jay Halim is my social media handle and j halim dot com. You just put Jay Halim in on Google, and that'll pop up.

[00:15:58.29] - Gresham Harkless

Absolutely. I truly appreciate that. Obviously, to make this even easier, we're gonna have the links and information in the show notes as well too so that everybody can get ahold of you, the the podcast, the books, all the awesome things that you do

[00:16:09.70] - Jamar Washington

for the community and and

[00:16:10.89] - Gresham Harkless

and beyond. So thank you so much for being in our corner today, and I hope you have a phenomenal rest day.

[00:16:15.70] - Jamar Washington

Day. Thank you, brother. I appreciate you guys.

[00:16:18.00] - Intro

Thank you for listening to the I am CEO podcast powered by CB Nation and Blue sixteen Media. Tune in next time and visit us at I m c e o dot c o. 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 Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, and everywhere you listen to podcasts. Subscribe

[00:16:44.89] - Gresham Harkless

and leave

[00:16:45.39] - Intro

us a five star rating. This has been the I am CEO podcast with Gresham Harkless junior. Thank you for listening.

[/restrict]

Dave Bonachita - CBNation Writer

This is a post from a CBNation team member. CBNation is a Business to Business (B2B) Brand. We are focused on increasing the success rate. We create content and information focusing on increasing the visibility of and providing resources for CEOs, entrepreneurs and business owners. CBNation consists of blogs(CEOBlogNation.com), podcasts, (CEOPodcasts.com) and videos (CBNation.tv). CBNation is proudly powered by Blue16 Media.

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