Sept. 8, 2022

Lessons Learned From Rapid Business Growth & Letting go of Employees with Michael Bauman

Apple Podcasts podcast player badge
Spotify podcast player badge
Google Podcasts podcast player badge
Overcast podcast player badge
Castro podcast player badge
PocketCasts podcast player badge
RSS Feed podcast player badge
Amazon Music podcast player badge
Audible podcast player badge
iHeartRadio podcast player badge

Struggles, we all face them. In school, in work, in our personal lives, and in our relationships. If we use the lessons we learn from the struggles we face to inspire the rest of our choices, there’s no saying what we can’t achieve.


Join me in this episode as I speak with landscaper, entrepreneur, and opportunist, Michael Bauman, about the lessons he’s learned from starting a business, the dangers of achieving rapid business growth, and how he’s recovering after recently firing several valuable employees. 


I connected with Michael through TikTok where he’s been interviewing his team members and creating content from the discussions. Michael embraces discomfort and talks to his employees about real life stuff. From marriage advice to real exit interviews, he and his team are providing insightful entertainment for days! So, I welcomed Michael on LnM to discuss some of his own personal insights he’s gained along his entrepreneurial journey.


“Having a team around you to especially make up your weaknesses is how you succeed.”

 – Michael Bauman


What You’ll Learn in This Episode:

·       Why Michael started creating content on TikTok & His content creation goals for the future.

·       How to overcome fear and overwhelm and gain momentum in starting a business.

·       Why business plans aren’t necessary to create a successful business.

·       How it feels to let go of employees & What Michael is doing to recover from the major loss.

·       You can’t do everything and you can’t do it alone! Make sure your team’s strengths compensate for your weaknesses.

·       Michael’s Learning and Misstep: In business, fast growth isn’t easy on anyone.



Watch this episode on YouTube:



Connect with Michael:

Connect with him on LinkedIn: 

Follow him on TikTok:

Subscribe to his YouTube channel:


it kind of came organically. We wanted to start a podcast, you know, I've been talking. Been to several different, like networking events and stuff, and people are super interested in what I'm doing. You know, they're always asking me questions and some of the stuff that we've been talking about has been it just come up, like, have you ever thought about doing a podcast? And I was like, yeah, but you know, I want to do it right. And I want to do something strong. But at the end of the day, I'm also kind of a guy. Through my businesses and stuff that I just like to try stuff and move forward and see how it goes. So that's kind of what we did. We were just like, I, I hired my guy, Ryan who produces all this stuff for me. And he was like, so you're interested in the podcast. I was like, yeah, man, this is something I've been wanting to do. And he's like, well, What do you want to do? And I was like, I have no idea. Let's just get it set up. Let's, let's start down the path. And, and I think organically we'll figure out the path we go on. And I wanted to do, you know, I'm, I'm a, I guess I'm an entrepreneur at heart in the sense of like, I just like ideas, I just bounced stuff around. So it just kind of started moving and the idea just kind of popped in my head. , I don't know who to interview Uh, that is Mr. Michael Bowman, who ain't scared to tough things out. thank goodness for the magic of editing, because we had like some serious technical difficulties, uh, but he stuck it out and you're gonna find that this episode's pretty darn good. It's another one of them, super wisdom packed conversations where, uh, Michael shares like a ton of his personal insight and experience that I think is gonna be extremely useful for entrepreneurs, people out there that are thinking about starting a business or who have already started a business. He's got, he's got the goods. Some of those goods are his story around gaining momentum in starting a business, which of course really resonated with me cuz it call it confirmation bias. But I like what he's selling. And in the stinky side, right. We talk a little bit about what it feels like to let go of team members, um, in like a super recent experience that he had just gone through at the time of this recording. And we also talk about his point of view, around education and what role that played in his life. and he's got a pretty darn amazing life you know, I mentioned that we, we share some thinking. He also has a podcast. Like we connected over the talk, and I'm headed up to South Carolina and I'm gonna be, I will have the privilege of being, I. On his podcast lion's legacy. And I hope he takes it easy on me. I hope he doesn't pay me back for all of the darn glitches and pauses and stops and all the stuff we had to go. before I'll let you go and listen to the rest of the conversation. I gotta show some appreciation for our patrons. Thank you so much for your continued support. You know, one of the things somebody pointed out was like, Jess, like you keep talking about this patron thing, but like, what do I get? Well, So here's a little sneak peek as to what that is. Uh, if you sign up as a patron, one of the levels will give you access to, like, show notes, which is really just my chicken, scratch some of the behind the scenes stuff that that's really not out there. Nobody else gets to see. also any of our patrons get immediate access to the backstage passes that are clipped out of these conversations and live on the YouTube. So head on over learning to Become a member, click, click, click. As always, we love you for taking the time out to listen to this and, and contributing to enhancing the image of careers in the traits. And we also have like a super cool, exciting announcement. Uh, keep an eye out for some details on a lean in love book signing that is going to be taking place in New Orleans. Jennifer Lacy and I are gonna be up in new Orleans, uh, October, sometime, and we're gonna have a live and in person book signing, we're probably gonna live treatment. So as soon as we get all those things worked out, we'll be posting them out there on all the socials. I love y'all and here we go. What's going on? LnM Family. Here we are with Mr. Michael Bowman. Did I get that correct? You know, it's pro that's probably a correct pronunciation, but we just go with. You know, it's just, I guess the Bowman got it. tenfold, Michael Bowman in the house. Mike, so we connected through TikTok. Is that correct? Yeah, man. You know, I got some friends that like to, what are you talking about to like bro TikTok? Not just for games. Like it's, it's a serious deal going right now. I know I had been following you guys. and what struck me, like what stood out to me was your producing content of you interviewing people on from your team that worked for you. Yeah. So how, where did that idea come from? So it kind of came organically. We wanted to start a podcast, you know, I've been talking. Been to several different, like networking events and stuff, and people are super interested in what I'm doing. You know, they're always asking me questions and some of the stuff that we've been talking about has been it just come up, like, have you ever thought about doing a podcast? And I was like, yeah, but you know, I want to do it right. And I want to do something strong. But at the end of the day, I'm also kind of a guy. Through my businesses and stuff that I just like to try stuff and move forward and see how it goes. So that's kind of what we did. We were just like, I, I hired my guy, Ryan who produces all this stuff for me. And he was like, so you're interested in the podcast. I was like, yeah, man, this is something I've been wanting to do. And he's like, well, What do you want to do? And I was like, I have no idea. Let's just get it set up. Let's, let's start down the path. And, and I think organically we'll figure out the path we go on. And I wanted to do, you know, I'm, I'm a, I guess I'm an entrepreneur at heart in the sense of like, I just like ideas, I just bounced stuff around. So it just kind of started moving and the idea just kind of popped in my head. , I don't know who to interview, you know, I don't really have a, a large network of podcasters, so let's just start moving. And it kind of naturally became, well, the people that I have around me are my employees. So, and then I was just thinking about that and it kind of came to me that like, well, I've never heard a podcast of an employer talking to his employees about real. You know, I think that people get scared sometimes or like, what if they call me an asshole? What if they, you know, say something messed up? I'm like, I embrace the uncomfortable stuff. Like I like it. I think it is entertaining in a lot of ways. . And to be honest, nothing really super uncomfortable has come up. You know, it's like, you know, it's just real life happening. I kind of embraced that and I was like, well, cool. I'll just always do one with an employee and, and, you know, I don't, I like it. I think it's good. I don't know that I'm covering the content that I really want to get to which is more mindset based, more entrepreneurial minded stuff. So, you know, I've also started thinking now that, you know, I do have some other friends that are business owners or employers that, Hey, let's. Let's have you on my podcast with one of your employees so that I can kinda bounce stuff between you two. Yeah. And maybe I can get some real good, interesting stuff out of that, but, you know, in the meantime, we're just kind of rolling with it, you know, it's, it's, I think it's starting to kind of bring its own thing to life, you know, and, and yeah, we've done a couple different things now, you know, I think last week I did that exit interview with one of our people. Yes. Stuff like that. That I think it's real, man. It's just, it's, it's who I am. It's who I think all of us as entrepreneurs and business owners, like it's stuff you deal with every day. So why not? Why not try to see what insight you can get, you know, cuz Hey, at the end of the day, like I'm, I'm young, I'm been doing this for a while now, but you know, I don't know. I don't know at all. You know, shoot, there could be somebody that comes on is like, dude, I saw how you did that. If you started maneuvering in this direction, you know, you could probably see a lot of positive out of that. So, you know, I'm, I'm open to learning from other people and seeing where it goes. You mentioned mindset and like an entrepreneurial spirit. Where did that come from for you? Definitely my dad my dad's been a business yeah. Was a business owner my whole life. And I don't know. I mean, it's, I think, I truly believe it's like kind of a God given talent or gift ideas just come really natural to me. And I also have a strong work ethic, so just, it works well. So I. It's something that I've kind of figured out when I was about 15, 16 years old. So I dropped outta high school in 10th grade and started working for my dad and very quickly, you know, my dad and I would just sit down and discuss ideas and think about new stuff. And we were a really good team for bouncing his wisdom with my youth and like excitement, you know? So we, we were just a, a really good team together when it came. Coming up with ideas. So like I said, I dropped out, started working for him when I was, I was like almost 16 years old. So I was like, right at the end of my 15 year, I was just coming up on my 16th birthday and started working for him. Right. That was 2006. So 2006. Okay. I basically got a year and a half before the recession and my dad lost everyth. In the recession. So pretty naturally we like, my dad was just like, well, let's figure out the next thing let's go. You know? So we had sat down, sat down at that point and wrote a. Wrote a business plan when that was kind of the thing you had to do is write business plans. I don't really agree with that anymore, but we wrote a 300 page business plan on a solar company and we tracked down investors, got, got investors and partners involved and, you know, started a solar company from the ground up. And I was like I said, I was 18 at this point. And in the, in the room. Real business people that had been successful. And, you know, they were always looking at me like, what's this kid doing in the room, but as soon as they would ask me questions, like I knew that business plan inside and out, you know? So like, it just, it, it was hard for me to gain the credibility because of my youth, but. The ideas just flew, like just were in my mind and I could figure 'em out pretty well and articulate them, you know, that's, I think that's the biggest part of, of what I do is, is actually casting that vision so that other people can understand what I'm trying to accomplish, you know? And that's a yes, big deal. yeah, that that's, that's like a, one of those power skills. And if you can figure out how to teach that you got a whole new market, right? Cause it's, it's, it's tough. You get an idea and trying to help people understand like the end game going from zero. It, it, that's a real challenge. So this I wanna hear about, you said you don't really believe in the, the business plan methodology, what what's going on there that. I think I know, but I, I wanna make sure. Yeah. So for me, it's, it's kind of what I just said about the podcast. It's more important to start doing something than trying to, I think people get stuck in the planning side and they never get momentum to go, you know, and you have to create momentum, you know, you can't, you can't sit back and just be like, I'm gonna plan this thing out and plan and plan and plan and plan. What what's the point of the plan if you never get to going. Right. So, yeah, I think that people get, and then typically what I see is that in the planning phase, you don't know all the steps to that whole plan. So you get stuck. Oh, I can't do that. Cause I don't know how to get to this spot. Well, dude, you haven't even got going yet. So how do you know what that you don't know that spot yet? You don't know what's gonna be the crutch you gotta move. And, you know, as you learn, as you move through those baby steps, you know, you start getting a stride and then something you thought was gonna be a problem. You already corrected it and didn't even know or worst case. Yeah. You hit that. You hit that block wall. and you're able to pivot and figure things out because you're already moving, you know, you're already doing stuff. So you know, that momentum allows you to, yes. Either run through that wall. I use that phrase a lot. Me and my management team, like we'll run through any wall. We just wanna make sure it's not a load bearing wall. Yeah. Right. so, yeah, that could be bad. Yeah. So, you know, I just, I believe in, in moving, I'm sure you've seen tons of people get stuck. Yes. Within the planning. Right. Trying to have a contingency backup plan for every single damn scenario and they still haven't left the office. Can't do it. Yeah. So what kind tactics would you recommend to, to somebody that's like stuck right now? They haven't even got off first base. I mean, it's back to the same thing. Just do something, you know, whether you think it's right or wrong. I don't think that that matters too much. You know, part of it is, is the fear, right? Don't allow yourself to be afraid of something you don't know is gonna happen. Right. We, we're not in control of a lot of stuff. What you are control of is of is what you do day to day. So if you're working towards what you're wanting to. You're naturally gonna figure some stuff out. Sure. You're gonna fall. Sure. You're gonna fall short. You know, I mean, even, even as far as me in this past month, man, this past month has probably been one of the hardest months of business I've ever had. Really, and I got, and I got a rockstar team around me, you know, it just there's there's things that happen that you just don't know. Like you just don't know. Right. And yeah, you don't know what you don't know. So. You know, it's just continuing to learn and try to forecast, you know, where you think I'm not a big, I'm not a big plan. B guy, you know, I'm a, I'm a high competitive natured. Like I don't like losing, I'm not a, I'm not a poor sport, you know, I'm not gonna be a bad loser, but I don't like to lose. Right. So, yep. I think that It's, it's just one of those things that you just gotta push and keep pushing and don't have a plan B because it gives yourself an exit to be like, oh, my plan didn't really work out. So I'm gonna go to plan B because that, that got hard. It's gonna be hard. It's gonna be hard. Just move forward, man. Don't give up because it's hard, you know, and I think. You know, I, I tell people all the time, it's, it's pretty much a glass ceiling, man. Like you just gotta break through it and it's gonna get, as you get close to that ceiling, you're gonna second guess just about everything you've been doing. Yeah. Yeah. And then you break through it and you're like, holy crap. I went through that to get to this next level. Yeah. You know what I mean? So, yeah. Yeah. Totally. I mean, it's a thing, right? It's like, yes, it's gonna be. But to date, I've been able to overcome every challenge I've been faced with. So if that's true, this next challenge, I'm gonna be able to get through just gotta, you know, put your head down and make the damn thing happen. Yeah. So you mentioned multiple businesses, so. 10th grade you're 15 years old, very close to being 16, got outta high school, worked with dad, started a solar business. Obviously you've got your podcast. I'm, I'm a, in my head that counts as a business or can count as a business. Sure. You've got your landscaping business. What other irons in the fire you got? There's a bunch, man. Yeah. so yeah, the, the, the landscape business is, is my main focus, my main, my main source for everything I'm involved trying to close on a farm property that we're buying that has a wedding venue on. And a mushroom farm. So we, we took the mushroom. We've already taken the mushroom. We took the mushroom farm over in January. So that's been a very interesting and fun yeah. Little deal. And then, yeah, I got, I got irons in the fire with a lot of different investment opportunity and, and business. I'm looking at a campground right now, building a campground. Pretty excited about that. Yeah. We're in the very beginning stages of tho that, but pretty excited about that. There's probably others, but Those are kind of the main ones I'm, I'm really focused on at the moment. Okay. So. Serial entrepreneur. I don't really love that phrase, but really it's a very buzzword thing right now. Sure. You know? Okay. So, so what would, how would you, what would be like the most badass phrase to call what, what it is you're doing? I don't, I don't really know, man. I just. an opportunistic guy, you know, just, I, I allow opportu, like I don't get shut down by opportunities as far as like, you know, I do, I do believe that people are always like, well, you gotta focus on your, on your thing. Right. And that is true. If you're trying to keep a hundred percent of everything, right. I'm not a hundred percent guy. I'm a, I would rather have 10% of a billion dollar thing or things. Than a hundred percent of a million dollar thing, right? Like, because at the end of the day, you as one person and I've lived this, I actually grew my landscape business to 2 million pretty much by myself. And it was, that was my max capacity. And there was some jobs that I was doing that was like super half ass. Yeah. Especially things that I didn't like to. Which were some of the most important things, but yes, you know, there, I think there's kind of been a, a true statement, especially the service industry that right around a million, maybe a million and a half is about all you can get to is a. Owner operator type deal that you're the one involved with, you know, the sales side, the production side, the admin side. If you're taking on those three jobs, that's, you're, you're capped out at a million and a half and you're probably gonna work yourself to death. Yeah, yeah. Yes, sir. So, you know, I I've, I believe for a long time in scale, right. So, you know, with the landscape industry specifically, you know, it's a pretty low margin business. Almost similar to the restaurant industry. Yeah. You know, it's, it's very, it's a lot, most companies are at a single digit profit margin on a landscape business. There's outliers, you know, and, and we're, we're above that. But it's kind of the niche stuff that I do that got me there. Yeah. And I just believe that having the team around you to. Especially make up your weaknesses is how you succeed. So, you know, I'm not heavily involved in the mushroom business. I more am doing the visionary creative idea stuff that I'm really good at. And I have people that, you know, have my back on the operation side and the sales side, my landscape company, you know, I'm yeah, I'm really. The CEO, like, you know, I just am making sure that we're on the path that I'm creating and that I've put the right people in place to make that happen. So I mean, I just believe that you can't do everything. You're not gonna be great at any one thing. Right. So you just gotta do the stuff that you, that you like and enjoy. And find the people that can help you go to the next level. So way back before before you decided to get outta school. What kind of career did you think you were gonna be doing? You know, I think that's, what's so hard about being young and in school, you know, you're asked that all the time. I, I don't think, you know, I'm sure there's some people that have a passion at a very young age that they like, that's what I'm gonna be. You know, I enjoyed a lot of things. I was, I was always in like the motor sports stuff. So, you know, I raced dirt bikes when I was a kid. My stature for that, I'm a, I'm a pretty big guy. So like, I was never gonna be like, I could never be a race car driver because of my height, you know? Yeah. So. You know, the things that I really wanted, the things that I have a true passion about is like cars and motor sports and stuff like that. So, you know, I always wanted to be a race car driver, you know, kind of some of those like more abstract very rare things that can happen. Sure. But pretty young, I definitely had a desire with my, you know, like my dad would take me out in the car and we'd be riding around. And Hey son, I did that, you know, I did this, I did the like, check that out. That's what, you know, so like, I think that kind of got planted in me a lot younger than I understood. So as soon as I left school and started working, it was like, yep, this is what I'm gonna do. 10, four. Yeah. And so that was terrible in school. So with that, like clearly what's okay. So being terrible in school was. I mean what made me terrible in school is I think it, it's not built for people like me. Right. It's built for the masses. It's built to, you know, create I guess. Not there's no autonomy. Right? So you do this, this, this, this, this you're gonna learn this way, whether it's good for you or not. I was a very hands on learner. Like I can, I learned extremely quick in a hands on environment. So sitting there listening to a teacher, tell me how to do a math problem and write it on the board and memorize that. Like, it just, it, it didn't work for me at all. Right. So I was super bored. Basically how school is, is built. Not really built for people like me, who, who learn with their hands, who, you know, really Excel with hands on learning and having the ability to do things different ways. You know? So like I'm a very creative problem solver in the, in the fact of like, I can think outside of the box to solve a problem. So school is very in the box. Do it my way. This is how you solve the problem. This is how you need to memorize it, you know, and regurgitate information. And I'm not a, that's not how my brain works. That's not who I am. So I just quickly, like I was bored with it because I'm like, this is dumb, you know, I just don't, it doesn't, you know, to me, especially after ninth grade, like the stuff we were learning is just, it was bullshit. Like, you know, What do I need to know trigonometry for like, you know, and even the math, simple math stuff, you know, the teacher was like, you're never gonna have a calculator everywhere you go. It's like, Hey buddy, like I said, I think school school in general is a big deal up into a certain point. Like, you know, there there's, doesn't really matter. To understand a lot of stuff that just, it doesn't who care. Like it doesn't relate to the real world, you know, again, yeah. Teach me life skills of how to build credit and how to start a business. And you know, what are the fundamentals of, you know, finances, like give me something that's legitimate because we're just setting these kids up to. Get into the real world and basically get shit on. So not a huge school fan. So the other question and I imagine you probably got some good fun ones. Uh, what's a significant learning you had as a result of a painful MIS. oh, geez. Trying to think of where to go with this. had a very real one this week. some people that I brought in to run part of my company, So I think I've told you our company's very fast growth. We made the ink 5,000 list of fastest growing companies in America last year. So there's a lot of change, a lot of fast pace movement, and unfortunately, sometimes you run into people's capacity just based on the speed at which you're moving. So Oh yeah. I gotta interrupt the flow just a little bit. Can you hear that music in the background? Little groovy music. Anyhow, this little segment of this interview exists and is only available on the YouTube. That's right. We got a YouTube channel learnings and missteps, check it out. Or you can go to learnings and and find our YouTube channel there. And while you're. You can also click on, become a member, uh, to, to contribute some money, like funds straight up. I'm just gonna say it, 80% of that is going to be donated to the skilled trades Alliance because the skilled trades Alliance mission is very much in line with the learnings and missteps mission. Uh, and we're going to support great things and great people. And you signing up as a patron. we'll contribute to that effort. So we appreciate you deeply for doing that. Also. I dunno if y'all heard or not just in case you missed it. I'm an author now, Jennifer Lacey and I have, co-authored a book you gotta check it out. Lean in love five S love letters. It's on the Amazon. The whole goal of that book is to just help one person. And so far, we've gotten several, several people from the nobs tribe, from the LnM Family that have indicated to us that something at least one little thing in the book has helped. And so we've kind of exceeded our goals, but to exceed the goal and continue helping people that is the ultimate privilege in the world. So while you're out there on the Amazon, on the YouTube, on the LinkedIn, all the socials, leave us some reviews, leave us some comments, let us know you're out there. I know you're there. I see the statistics, the data, but I don't get to interact with John. That makes me a little bit sad. Anyhow, I'm gonna stop my whining. Appreciate. Y'all very much go to the YouTube to catch this learning and misstep backstage pass. And here we go back to the. so super fresh experience. one thing you said that people need to hear and like anchor on is it's it's gonna happen, right. It continues to happen. Yeah. The missteps, the pain, the, the hard decisions that we gotta make. And we gotta learn from 'em now you also. It, it took a, it sounded like it took an emotional toll on you having to make that hard decision. Oh, it was terrible, man. what did you do to recover from that? I think what happened to me was I knew that the decision had to be. The people around me were also like this, this is the only way, right? There's no, there's nothing else we can do. and some of those people have been saying that for a while, you know, and I was like, no, I can fix it. I, I know how to do this. Yeah. Right. I can make this work. And yeah, so. The recovery happened quickly because I knew it was the right decision for the business and for myself. Yeah. You know, so I think, I think the right, if it's the right decision, it, I mean, within, within, by the end of that day, you know, there was a couple things that happened where I was like, crap. I don't know if this was right. I'm scared. You know? And then by the next day I was like, I was good. I was, I was. Very confident in the decision I made and you know, and, and now, now I'm very, very like, that was by far the hardest, but best decision possible. Still sucks. I mean, that's, by far the wor for me, it's the worst part of the job. Like I hate firing people. It's it's terrible. It's terrible. But you know, for me, I got 125 employees, so, you know, I can't, yeah. I can't make decisions, you know, based on one person, man, I gotta make decisions based on the betterment of our company and making sure our people have longevity and, and the right things in place to be successful, man. I mean, that's so at the end of the day, that's, that's really. Fueled me and pushed me to do it, you know, is I gotta make, I gotta do what's best for everybody. Not just one person. Yeah. Yeah. It is not easy. You know, there's I used to think, man, when I get to be in charge, I'm just gonna fire the wrong people. The people that ain't doing it thinking it was an easy thing. And. It is, it has never been an easy thing. Even when I feel like I put gave 'em all the resources possible, all the support I could give 'em and, and like, just know they, they they're gonna go do amazing somewhere else. It still didn't feel good. Like it, it sticks with you. yeah. I think, you know, a big part of that too, man, is just, there's certain things you realize, man, that people, that aren't a good. Really erode what you're trying to do. You know what I mean? And if they're not on board with your vision or what you're trying to do, you know, they're doing things even, even if they don't know they're doing it, you know, that are that's, it's just eroding what you're trying to build, you know? I don't think some of them do it intentionally. But. You see it ha you know, one of the other lessons of similar caliber was I had one of the best foreman. He was my best foreman that worked for me. The dude got so much work done. He was super high productive. By far, nobody could keep up with his productivity, but he was a terrible leader, man. And people hated working for him. The turnover rate on his crew was higher than any other crew. , you know, no other crews wanted to work with him on site, you know, and, but I was terrified to get rid of him because I was like, he's making, like, he's making this company so much money. What do I do? you know, finally got to a point where I had to get rid of him because literally it was him and one guy and it's supposed to be a four man crew. And quite honestly, like he could do with two men, two men. What most of the other four man guys could do, you know? And it was like, but it's not sustainable. How long are you gonna be able to do that for, you know? Right. You gotta have the people. Yes. And man, I let 'em go. And literally the next day the company was a completely different, like the morale people, the way they felt. It not only didn't hurt us, but it made the other guys better because they're like, okay, I'm gonna step up because they were tolerating this behavior for so long now I see. They're not gonna tolerate it. So like everybody became more productive. They all became team, team mentality. Like they all work with one another. I every one of my foreman now can go on another foreman's job and work and, you know, not get in fights, not yell at each other. Yeah. You know, it's, it's, it's a big deal, man. And it's hard to quantify that, that it's UN quantifiable, you know what I mean? So it literally just has to be a feeling of this. Person's not doing what we need them to do and the very high level stuff. While he is being super productive. He's also destroying what you're trying to accomplish. those are tough times, but they're scary in the moment and they almost always pay off big. Yeah, big, big, cuz it's signals. I mean, you just said it, but it signals to the rest of the team. What will be tolerat. Yep. And what won't be taught, like these are the rules of the game. I mean, I've been there. I used to be that guy, right? Yeah. That nobody wanted to work with people quit on me all the time, but man, I got stuff done. And I was finally, I figured that out, but then I also worked on teams where there was some, some dirt bags and they, the company tolerated it. Like, why are y'all doing like, yeah. So I'm trying to do the right thing. Why am I gonna try. What you really value is output. Yep. And like you said, it's not sustainable. And so man, that dude that's like gangsta, OG level, like you gotta make that hard decision, the most productive person, it's a short term pain, but super long-term benefit. Yeah. Yeah. I think you're already experiencing the better. Yeah. Yeah. I believe in that more than ever. You know, and it's tough in this market, man. Like, I don't know. I'm sure Texas is similar, but you know, in, in Raleigh where we're at, I mean, it's, this economy is just insane. Like still, even with all the stuff going on, man, like there's no, we don't even feel it here right now. And the labor force is extremely short. You know yep. The other scary part of it is how do you replace these people? Because, I mean, shoot, I think this week, man, we had 10 people apply to a job and two people showed up, you know, like that's, that's the deal. That's what we're dealing with. You know? And, and even the ones that are showing up, yes. They're not landscapers. We gotta teach 'em you know what we do? Yeah. And it's not easy, like, you know, yeah. It's not easy. Yeah, it's, it's different. I try to tell the guys all the time, like we have the people we have, we need to try to pour into them, but you also can't be fearful of what I just said. Right? So part of our issue was we kind of became fearful and stuck in the, well, we can't replace these people. So we gotta tolerate the ones that are doing a crap job or not a good fit culturally, or, you know, any of that because we gotta get the jobs done. We gotta have people out there. What I found was nine times outta 10. They're not doing the job anyway and making it harder for everybody else. So what's the point. Yes. You know, you gotta get rid of them man, and, and pull the trigger. Yep. Oh yeah. You know, the whole labor shortage. That's a, that's a national thing. It's across the country. I can't say globally, cuz I haven't been outside the United States. everywhere I've been in, in the us, every trade, every business is struggling for workforce. Yeah. The ones that I think that are gonna get ahead are, are doing exactly what you're doing, right? Investing in their people, holding true to their values showing appreciation and developing their own workforce. Internally. Those, those people they're getting traction because they're taking ownership of the situation. Yeah. But a lot of organizations are blaming the school and blaming the trade school and blaming the generation. Like you can do that, but ain't nothing gonna happen if you're blaming everybody else. Right. Yeah. I think that's, that's where we've kind of come to, you know, a lot, a lot of landscapers in our industry. They rely heavily on HTB workers. Right. That's a huge investment. And I don't know, I don't know if this is across the country, as far as like here, it's a lottery system. So like you have to be in the lottery to get the guys, so, and still you have to pay for them. So, you know, like around here there's we have all the, the largest landscapers in the country are in this market. And a lot of them. Are relying on 50, 60, 70, a hundred HTB workers to come in. Well, this year the lottery was, I believe, cut down. And some of them got, none of 'em got no HTB workers and Ooh. So in the meantime, they had to, like, they had to keep the money that it was gonna take to keep those PE to get those people. So not only. Were they not training and investing in local talent. They also didn't get their workers. So they're so far behind the eight ball because they didn't get what they thought they were gonna get. You know, it just, it screws. So like I've committed that I'm not gonna go down that path. I'm going to invest that money into local talent to develop what we can because you just, why, why would. Yeah, I don't play the lottery because it's a stupid tax, right? Like why would I do it with people? It's the same thing, man. Like the odds are not in your favor and to be fair, when you do get, like, these guys are stuck, like we, we kind of joke that it's like a drug because I don't have it. I don't have it now. I got it. And you're on this high because those guys produce so much, you know, and yeah. It's just a, it's a revolving cycle of not enough, too much, , I gotta, I gotta rely on 'em. So, you know, I just, I think that we're going down the path of developing local talent and we're gonna invest as much money into that as possible. So hell yeah. Well, I applaud you for that. My man, one, that, that, that's a pretty good segue to the next, the closing thought. What footprint do you intend to leave on this world, sir? You know, I wrestle with this a lot. I, that this question's very similar to what I ask my guess is what does legacy mean to you? You know, I think legacy is a very abstract thing. First of all you know, I think most people. What I hear most is people saying that, you know it's what I leave behind. It's the memories. It's stuff like that. And, and I agree with a lot of that. You know, I, I truly, I hope that my footprint is people when they end up in my business or in contact with me that I create more value than I. Right. So I try my hardest to always be thinking of how do I pour into these people to help their lives? How do, how do I help them become better? You know, I tell it to all my employees too, that like, look, man, I'm gonna develop. I'm gonna push you to be the best you can be. And I hope you stay with us forever. , but I also understand I'm never gonna keep you back from bettering your life, if you have an opportunity. And I hope that I have put enough into you that you're, that if you do leave, you'll always look back and be like, my life changed when I walked into his place. So yeah, I think that that that's huge for me. My dad, my dad passed away a year and a half ago. Mm-hmm so a lot of what I do here is his legacy. I'm trying to build what he always believed he could do. Yeah. So, you know, I, I don't care as much about myself, you know? I mean, it is a last name thing, you know, it's more. My dad's the same way he dropped outta high school. He grew up on a farm. He left and said, I'll never carry a lunchbox to work. You know, he wanted to be an entrepreneur and he, he lived true to that to the day he died. So that's powerful, man straight up like that is the purpose, right? I, I think you probably folks know out there, the LnM Family know. The, the whole purpose of this podcast is to enhance the image of careers and the trades. I think your story and your father's story, doing a phenomenal job of that because you know, the traditional must get the degree, must get the diploma thing when you're proven that wrong. Like that is not a necessity. Maybe for some careers, it is, but it ain't for everybody or for everything you can still grow and contribute tremendously to your community, to. And develop careers for others. Like you are officially providing people with careers without all the fancy papers on the wall. yeah. We, we like to say that we're second chance university here, you know, like, yeah. I love I, and it's because of who I am, man. I'm the underdog, right? Like I embrace that. That's who I. You know, I can't tell you the amount of people that have counted me out for dropping outta high school or, My dad losing his business, you know, there's been so many people that have been like, oh, you're just gonna go down this path and lose, you know, you're gonna end up like your dad. Right. Yeah. And it's like, I embrace that to the, I love the chip on the shoulder man. Like yeah. Yeah. You know, it drives me. I'm definitely the owner that, I mean, shoot, I was out on a job site yesterday on my hands and knees picking weeds out of a job site for two hours. Like I'm not above working and doing whatever I have to. So, and I think it's because of that underdog nature that I'm like, I'm never gonna be the guy that's in the office and you do what I say you're gonna do. Like I'm the I'll show you exactly what I'm willing to. because I'm not gonna lose, you know, and I'm gonna create a place where you guys are gonna have a career and be successful because I will stop at nothing to make sure it happens. And I'm gonna get people around me that feel the same way and are willing to do the same stuff. Yeah. So. Yeah. As far as like, you know, the degrees and all that, man, I think, I think our culture is, has learned very quickly, especially with, you know, what the administration just did, man. Like if you don't realize at this point that that has become so like the return on investment of these degrees is so far off base that it just doesn't even make sense, may maybe for the very, you know, doctors and lawyers and, you know, very high. I guess intellectual things that you need to learn through that. And even them, man, you know, you talk to a lot of lawyers and doctors, man. They're like, you can't even tell, you know, they're like that, that four years, seven years, whatever they did, you know, they're like, it was a book man. Like that book can't teach you what you learn once you're out doing it once you're doing it. Yeah. And it's it. I think the proof is in the pudding man, and people are really starting to understand it. So who do you wanna shout out, man? I know you got a, a, an amazing team out there and you get around quite a bit. So any particular shoutouts you wanna give? My, my I mean, my, my whole team, man. I mean, there's, there's nobody that I can't shout out. You know what I mean? Like there's, I got amazing people around me and yeah. I mean, none of this happens without them. My mentor and coach Dan Dan, a BTE he's I mean, that dude changed my life almost immediately. He's made me a much be like, When I talk about being a visionary and like idea guy he's, he's pushed me to the extreme of, you know, you hear people say, make your, make your idea or dream so big that it scares other people. I, I tell some of my stuff to people and they're just like this guy's out of his damn mind. Like, I dunno what he's talking about, but, you know, and it, it's pretty cool because the team around me has now even. When it is a big, crazy audacious goal or idea, they're like, they look at me kind of sideways and then they see what we've done. And they're like, well, I'm not even gonna second. Guess it we're, we're gonna go after it. You know? So, I mean, there's so many things that, you know, just it's powerful stuff, man. When you, when you don't allow the world to kind of suppress who you believe you are. Cuz I think that's, that's a big part of it, man. People, people that believe that they have the short end of the stick or, you know, they're a victim of their circumstances, man. Like that's, what's holding you back. Nothing else. Yep. And I promise you, once you go out and try and say, I'm not gonna give up till I get to that point. You'll learn very fast that you're your own worst. There's nobody else out there trying to stop you, you know, maybe competitors, but those competitors tend to make you better. So. Exactly. Exactly. Yeah. Boom. All right. So where can people find, I know I find you on TikTok. Any other social platforms you use? Yeah, LinkedIn, Michael Bowman, B a U M a N. Alliances legacy podcast is the TikTok. Or is it just lion's legacy? It's at lion's legacy at lion's legacy is the, the, to YouTube, huh? YouTube, YouTube lion's legacy podcast. Yeah. Yeah, I mean, we're, we're kind of all over the play. We're not, you know, we're not super big on any of the social media stuff. You know, just some again, we're just moving down the path to see if it's. What I believe it could be worth. Right. Which is not to be famous on TikTok, but to build a brand that people, you know, understand and see, and hopefully gain value out of it more than I take, you know? I mean, that's yeah. That's my, my whole heart behind it, man, is, is I hope to help people push past that comfort zone or that, that victim mentality and just go. Yeah. Well, tell you what y'all gave me some good pointers on TikTok. And I started I, the next day I put him into practice and I'm seeing the results. So that's awesome, man. Yeah. Thank you. Some of the stuff's a little goofy, but Hey, shout out to Gary V man. He's the one that really did all this Oh, man. Didn't I tell you this conversation made me a little sad that y'all remember Renee, the cohost, like he's big time now. He ain't got time for learnings and missteps. I'm definitely going to be recommending this episode to him, cuz Listening to Michael's thinking about stuff I think is the most powerful thing. And I know it would benefit Renee and it would benefit any youngster out there. So share this episode with your young lings because man, he's got some seeds that are gonna help. Some people grow. And now we're gonna give a shout out to the LnM Family member. That's been given us props. And this one is to MC who left the book review on the Amazon, MC says I am not in the construction industry. And I had never heard about the five S's of lean as a leader in the professional field. I thought I knew it. I will definitely take this book as guidance for self-improvement drawing and reflecting are not my thing, but it has taken me to a vulnerable place that I'm thoroughly enjoying. Dang. That's like for real, for real, uh, big thanks to the authors and everyone who contributed to the amazing quotes. I hope an audio book is in the near future, man. I, you know, an audio book is in the near future and by near we mean like next year, we have some ideas, uh, and we just gotta get it into the workflow cuz people are busy. MC thank you so much for the feedback. I mean, I'm gonna say this forever. The goal is to help one. That is the purpose of the book and, and your feedback indicates to me that that we're that's happening. And so thank you for taking the time to read it and double thank you for leaving a review. We appreciate you very much, and everybody else keep being awesome. Be cool. And we'll talk at you next time. Peace. Oh my goodness. You're either driving down the road or just so enthralled with, uh, with this whole podcast that you went all the way down to the very, very, very, very end of it. And we appreciate you and just, we're going to take this as an indication of your dedication so we got a little special request of you, a call to action, because everybody tells us that like, you need to have a call to action. So here's the call to action. Be kind to yourself, go out there and share a smile with someone