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"The Chosen" and Lessons in Impact

Good morning innovators, change-makers, and entrepreneurs. This newsletter and podcast feature stories about the people – past, present and future – who change the world. They make decisions and take actions enlivened by what I call The Entrepreneur’s Ethic. The Entrepreneur’s Ethic infuses people, organizations and places where the future is created, and the world is made a better place. One of the Entrepreneurs featured in my upcoming book, The Entrepreneur’s Ethic, is Walt Disney, American animator, film producer and entrepreneur. Disney was a pioneer of the American animation and entertainment industry, and he had some battle scars to prove it. There are seven parts of The Entrepreneur’s Ethic. Disney’s work exemplifies Ethic 4: Invest for Tomorrow. This is the future-orientation of entrepreneurship.

This week’s episode is a great conversation with Derral Eves. Derral is one of the world’s top YouTube and online video marketing experts. As an example, he’s coached and worked with MrBeast, whose YouTube channel is considered to be the most-subscribed channels whose owner is an individual.

He is also co-founder of The Chosen, the multi-season series about the life of Christ, and the highest crowd-funded TV series or film project of all time. Derral is an entrepreneur’s entrepreneur and has profoundly and effectively invested for tomorrow. Listen carefully to the way he describes how he filters what he works on.

Good Reads

Three Things I Think (I Think)

Derral Eves has a notion that we discuss that he calls “Red Sea Moments.” These are the times when you face seemingly impossible odds of success or survival. The Red Sea is before you and Pharoah’s army of chariots is approaching from behind.

Entrepreneurship and innovation produce such moments. All. The. Time.

In the last two weeks, I’ve tried to coach two co-founder partners facing Red Sea Moments, one just starting out, the other with more experience but with a thornier situation. What do you do when the sea before you — or your business partner — is threatening to pull you under the waves? “Aren’t we supposed to be on the same side?”

1. James Bond – Sometimes MI6 Agent 0007, when faced with uncertainty, blows things up. Quite literally, lots of things go boom. Pyrotechnics are good in movies, of course, but sometimes not so great in business and life. If you approach a Red Sea Moment with explosives, try to not to injure yourself and others.

2. Scramble your eggs – An investor in my first company from New York City used to say that when businesses face trouble, they need to “scramble their own eggs.” They need to throw a change-up pitch, hit the reboot button, pick your metaphor. The basic idea is that if things are trending bad, something, maybe many things, need to change.

3. Choose which bucket to carry – Sometimes dilemmas have no apparent good choices. To use farm-boy language, there are two buckets of… manure… and you’ve got to pick one up and carry it. Derral described a faith element in making choices when facing Red Sea Moments, and I think there’s much to that idea. A higher purpose, or power, can provide strength for getting through and past seemingly intractable problems.

Farm to my table

We recently received a delivery from Ray and Jess Schmidt at Farm Story Meats. Their pork, from Chester White pigs, is a regular part of our table. I’ve smoked many pork tenderloins for international visitors in the last year, but most recently we cut and tenderized one for pork medallions with mustard sauce. Fussier than the traditional pork tenderloin sandwich, but so good!


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