Engineer For Failure, But Expect SuccessOct 04, 2021
Have you ever wondered what value you would receive by stepping into the unknown? How could you grow by facing adversity? What could you learn about yourself if you let go of control?
If you’ve ever wondered about these questions, you’re in for a treat. Today’s guest on The Reaching Beyond podcast has routinely challenged himself, and he’s here to share his experiences.
Today, my guest is Jim Carter III — the man behind the marketing company Cause Hack, which amplifies people’s messages using technology to help them grow your audience and impact. We met in 2018 at a mastermind event, and we’ve been friends since!
Jim has since joined me on two Reaching Beyond experiences where I witnessed firsthand how he authentically shows up. I love everything that Jim stands for, and in this episode, we talk about the benefit of being open to new things and the benefits of leaning into discomfort.
Here’s some wisdom from our conversation to give you a taste of what’s to come.
“I told myself, ‘From this point forward, no excuses — play like a champ.’ [Earlier in the day, I had] an opportunity to let jealousy take over, and I stayed in my integrity. I said, ‘You’re not going to let that take you down. You’re going to let that light you up,’ and from that point forward, things shifted in my mind. I would not have gotten that experience unless I stepped into doing something uncomfortable.” - Jim Carter III
Jim is an incredible human being with two words standing out to describe him: humble and authentic. If you’re a personal brand, a podcaster, entrepreneur, or someone trying to amplify your message and get it in front of more people, you’ll find great value in our conversation today.
So without any further delay, here’s my conversation with Jim Carter III!
Who Is Jim Carter III?
Jim was born in West Covina, California, about 30 miles outside of LA in the suburbs, and currently resides in Whittier, California. He’sbeen happily married since 2008 and has a 10-year-old daughter and an eight-year-old daughter. He proudly calls himself a “Girl Dad” and wears that title with pride.
In his career, Jim is the man behind the marketing company Cause Hack, an agency dedicated to amplifying someone’s message through technology by repurposing content to grow audiences and impact. As their website says: “We make your message timeless.” The content you put out into the world can be reused, reshaped, and repurposed into something current and exciting — all through the use of technology and creativity.
Jim’s spark of curiosity in technology was noticed early on by Bob Chamberlain — one of his Scoutmasters at an early age and a computer repair technician. Bob pushed that curiosity and opened up the world of computers by giving Jim a bunch of spare computer parts and told Jim’s dad and mom the challenge was to see if he could figure out how to put them together. Jim did! Jim eventually used the challenges to build the best computer amongst his friends and meant he arrived at high school with an expertise few had and a willingness to try things that others wouldn’t dare.
Jim used that confidence to launch his first business three months after graduating high school.
“Had it not been for Bob, seeing something in me which I had not yet seen, I would not be in the position I am today. He was a pivotal figure in my life, and I’m forever grateful.” - Jim Carter III
As a serial entrepreneur, Jim has started and closed more businesses than he’d like to count. He eventually got tired of playing small and wearing his “‘failures”’ as a badge of honor. It took asking a painful question, “Why am I proud of this?” to realize something was not working, and that spurred Jim to join a mastermind community, which evolved as he leaned into being uncomfortable and trying new things.
“I find myself telling people to lean into ‘it,’ whatever ‘it’ is, because if you don’t, you’re not going to move forward [by] trusting your gut [the way] you need to.” - Jim Carter III
Jim now finds himself blending two passions: technology and service. Never one to be defeated by failure, Jim has overcome these challenges and now finds himself helping others with what he has learned through his agencies, Cause Hack and Fourwest Digital. As always, the focus isn’t on him — it’s on the people he’s serving and the people he’s serving with.
Jim has transformed his life by finally being proud of what he has accomplished thus far. He realizes the limited time he has with his family and now spends time with his kids walking them to school in the morning. Jim maximizes the middle of the day for work so he can shut the laptop off at the end of the day guilt-free and enjoy checkers, chess, or just have a good time being a family.
The evolution of Jim’s journey with being an entrepreneur culminated in some defining moments that would prepare him for an “aha” moment.
Time to Stop Playing Small
America’s current work culture is a sure-fire path to burnout — with “hustle and grind” as the core focus, it’s no wonder! Working hard isn’t a bad thing, and perhaps we can get away with it in our 20s, but as we move into our 30s, time catches up with us, and we become ready for an “aha” moment.
“Two key moments stand out for me, refocusing back to having a heart of service — I still love making money but realize there’s a better way to do it. [Secondly,] having our friend and mentor Chris Harder pounding it into our thick skulls about dropping our ego [and] being comfortable being uncomfortable, because there’s no other way to do it.” - Jim Carter III
Since he joined that mastermind, Jim has invested more into personal development than ever before and believes these two defining moments have been responsible for creating new business opportunities by facilitating new conversations, new methods, and new people in his network.
“The fascinating thing is I used to take pride in being busy and didn’t know what the hell I was doing. I didn’t know why I was so busy, but I was busy — and I was proud of it. [I finally] stopped putting you off, [even if] I wanted to find the right time to have this conversation and feel like I could add value.” - Jim Carter III
I’ve been trying to get Jim to come on the podcast for a long time now, so I appreciate hearing the back story, and I’m so glad that we finally synched our calendars to make this happen!
Jim has learned immensely through his self-growth and come to an important conclusion about “waiting for the right time.”
Guess What? You’re Never Ready
I’ve written some pretty hefty checks for different investments in myself, which has made me a big advocate of personal growth — because each check has always preceded a return on investment. I understand why personal development investment is scary for many people, whether it’s investing in coaching, a course, or a mastermind. I asked Jim for his perspective on what helped him finally feel prepared to take the jump.
“My short answer is: I was never ready. [I ended up meeting] Christina Cure [in our mastermind, and we became] accountability partners. We kept it going [after the mastermind] because she teaches people to feel that they’re worthy. I hired her as a coach to get through my thick skull [and] help me train myself to believe and expect that good things are on the other side of feeling uncomfortable. I always believed, but I was lacking the expectancy.” - Jim Carter III
By taking a chance and registering for a mastermind, Jim sat next to a coach that invariably helped him through his toughest stumbling blocks. Christina gave Jim clarity and an understanding that if he genuinely believed he was on the right path but not expecting it to come around the corner, how could he ever welcome it when it arrived?
“As a software engineer for two decades, I know how to engineer success, but there’s a principle in engineering, which is you engineer for failure, but you expect success. I stopped overanalyzing everything that was just pouring into my head and finally told myself, ‘I believe and I expect,’ and because of that, [I] will break that horrible pattern [of] all of these years I thought it was the right track but wasn’t willing to go for it.” - Jim Carter III
Once Jim started believing and expecting that success would happen, he allowed himself the opportunity to get in the right circles to accelerate his success. Jim’s willingness to learn, participate and be uncomfortable catapulted his growth in his career and personal life. He didn’t wait until “he was ready” because that moment wouldn’t come. Instead, he jumped in, embraced the uncomfortable, and became stronger on the other side.
The Benefit of Trying New Things
One of my first experiences with Jim happened when he attended the last two Reaching Beyond experience events. One of those was golf day at Pinehurst, the birthplace of golf in North America. Jim showed up excited, having never played a full round of golf before.
We had all different levels of golfers — from beginners like Jim to single-digit handicappers. On virtually every hole, players had to wait for the group in front to hit, but that added pressure didn’t prevent Jim as a novice from fearlessly playing.
“I remember when you told me about planning this trip to Pinehurst, and I caught myself saying, ‘Why don’t I golf?’ So when you said you were bringing in pros, [I thought,] ‘Well, if I don’t do it now, I’m never going to do it.’ I learned if I don’t prioritize taking care of myself and become comfortable being uncomfortable — I’m never going to do it.” - Jim Carter III
Jim not only broke past his insecurities — he almost had the only hole-in-one! Jim used the golf experience in the searing heat and humidity to find joy and comfort in uncomfortable surroundings, creating the platform for a breakthrough in our next skiing experience.
“I feel like a different man because you’ve given me the space to try stuff. On the ski trip, Chris Harder was relaunching one of his programs while we were up on the mountain. I remember sitting next to him at lunch, and asking, ‘How’s the launch going?’ He checked, and the number was substantial [so] we were all celebrating. For a quick moment, I remember this piercing bit of jealousy, and within that split second feeling I stopped myself, [saying,] ‘No, you’re on your way.’ That was a good personal growth moment.” - Jim Carter III
After lunch, Jim grabbed his phone for a picture when he saw a message from his Director of Client Services at Cause Hack: “We just closed our biggest contract!” Jim couldn’t believe the timing and nearly dropped the phone off the lift!
“I got up to the top of the mountain and skied up to [Chis to share the story]. We hugged, and it was such a great moment. [It was] the teaming of belief and expectancy and from that point forward, I just told myself, ‘No excuses — play like a champ.’” - Jim Carter III
Jim had an opportunity to let jealousy take over, but instead, he stayed true to his integrity. From that moment, Jim felt a shift in his business mindset and credits his success today with the decision to step into things that made him uncomfortable.
What uncomfortable experiences have you been avoiding that might bring you exponential growth?
Why You Should Listen to This Jim Carter III Podcast Episode Right Now…
I appreciate everything that Jim stands for, and I’m honored to walk with him on his journey and finally get him on the podcast! If you’d like to listen to the full episode to hear Jim’s story and wisdom, you can do so here.
Jim has turned two passions into a thriving business with his agency, Cause Hack. They are helping companies use technology more creatively to optimize their marketing and demonstrate their authority online for exponential growth and impact in the world.
If you’re a nonprofit or service-orientated entrepreneur, connect with Cause Hack by visiting their website or schedule a free Growth Call where you can talk with a member of their team by clicking here. You can also follow them on Instagram for more updates and opportunities!
To wrap up the episode, I asked Jim a curveball question — what would he talk about if he had to give a TED talk on something most people don’t know about him?
“A massive passion for me is music. I used to DJ in high school and college [so] I would talk about the progression of house music and how that’s shaped an economy and a world.” - Jim Carter III
That’s gotta be one of the coolest answers I’ve gotten on the show so far!
Thank you so much for reading this post. If you found value from this episode, it would mean a lot to me if you would take a few seconds and write a five-star review and maybe share it with some of your friends on Apple Podcasts. I’d be so grateful! I’d also love it if you would tag Jim, @causehacker, and me, @kyle_depiesse, on Instagram with your greatest takeaways from the episode!
Cheers to your success! I’m rooting for you.
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