As a senior in faculty, Brent Lacey had already been accepted to medical college, and he was scheduled to begin within the fall. But he didn’t know what sort of drugs to follow, or easy methods to put his forthcoming schooling to greatest use.
“I actually felt like I simply wanted some path.”
So he drove to Yellowstone National Park and spent per week praying and meditating on his personal. The time left him feeling “like I used to be being referred to as into navy service,” one thing that shocked Brent. No one in his household is navy, and he hadn’t thought-about this path in any respect earlier than that time.
He felt a robust calling, so he referred to as up some recruiters, who advised him the Navy was desperately in want of individuals.
A Navy scholarship supported him via medical college on the University of Texas in San Antonio. After that he did his inner drugs and gastroenterology coaching via the Navy in San Diego, adopted by excursions in Florida and North Carolina.
“And, now it’s 15 years later, and right here I'm.”
Brent’s time as a Navy physician—a gastroenterologist for adults, to be exact—has been “extremely rewarding,” however a job supply at a personal follow in Texas means his service time is coming to an in depth this summer season.
It’s the beginning of a complete new chapter for Brent and his household—nevertheless it’s not the one factor that’s taking his life in thrilling instructions.
From Discipleship to Entrepreneurship
Brent’s enterprise started as a ministry at his church, the place he taught courses primarily based on Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University. After a few years, Brent realized there was an enormous want for monetary literacy locally, so he created a “monetary discipleship” program and began doing one-on-one monetary teaching—all without spending a dime.
Then, nurses and medical doctors on the hospital the place he labored began asking Brent for assist with their funds. “I began getting the identical questions over and again and again. And I believed to myself, it will be good if I had one thing written down someplace the place I may simply level somebody to.”
In mid-2019, Brent determined that a weblog could be a good way to deal with that goal, however he didn’t know the place to begin. And so, a humble Google search: how do you begin a weblog?
That led him to numerous completely different sources, together with SPI. He pored over the supplies, studying blogs and listening to podcast episodes. “I believe I went again and binge listened to one thing like half of the Smart Passive Income [Podcast] episodes, beginning with episode 1.”
Thankfully, Brent had at all times been a author, so he knew what it took to churn out an honest weblog publish. But he needed to ensure his thought was viable earlier than committing numerous time or cash to it, so in May 2019 he took Pat’s Build Your Own Brand (BYOB) course.
He determined to write down twenty-five weblog posts as a check, “as a result of if I am unable to get via at the very least one per week, then it isn't value it.” He completed all twenty-five in simply six weeks.
“Okay, that is enjoyable,” he thought. So he took the subsequent steps: registered a website, arrange a primary WordPress website, and launched his weblog, named The Scope of Practice, in October.
The weblog started with a “monetary discipleship” focus—a extremely saturated area that features large names like Dave Ramsey and Suze Orman. Brent realized “it was going to be laborious to compete… at the very least on the outset.”
“But perhaps I could make myself actually useful to a smaller group,” Brent thought. “Like Pat at all times says, ‘The riches are within the niches.’”
“And the medical world, the healthcare discipline looks like a fairly logical place to begin.”
Refining the Niche
With extra analysis, Brent noticed that there have been only some folks writing, podcasting, and talking about private funds within the medical area. He estimates that the variety of entrepreneurs centered on this area of interest is fewer than 100, and doubtless someplace between sixty and eighty.
Brent knew from Pat’s steering that it was potential to have a thriving enterprise with a small however devoted following. So he got down to construct one by specializing in the Venn diagram intersection of enterprise and private finance mastery for physicians.
Adding a enterprise administration element appeared like a good way to tell apart himself from the opposite private finance “gurus” on the market—particularly as a result of it’s one thing physicians typically will not be excellent at.
“They undergo medical college or dental college they usually're actually nice at their craft on the finish. But unexpectedly, they seem to be a small enterprise proprietor they usually've been skilled for that in no way.”
Focusing on enterprise administration and monetary mastery permits Brent to attach and work with individuals who want assist in one or each of these areas—and generally even help them past the scope of their unique want.
“If there's somebody who needs to know extra about management, and follow administration and issues like that, then I can supply that—plus the non-public finance arm. And the identical factor if persons are coming for private finance: I can pivot that and say, ‘Well, lots of people have hassle with enterprise, too.’”
Another factor Brent did on the outset was begin his electronic mail record. “One of the most important regrets that I heard from individuals who began on-line companies is that they need they'd began their electronic mail record so much sooner. And so I did that proper out of the gate.”
He has an “lively” record of about 700 folks proper now, which he’s grown via a mixture of visitor posts and podcast appearances. In the method, he’s gotten to know numerous the opposite bloggers and podcasters in his discipline.
One of the issues he’s grown to understand about this group is “everyone's actually seeking to assist different folks. Everyone's type of in competitors with one another. But solely type of—I imply, everyone's actually keen to assist out.”
A Podcast of His Own
Once the weblog was buzzing, Brent started to department out, launching a number of small promotions to widen his viewers. He additionally accepted a number of invites to hitch folks’s podcasts “and realized that I actually loved it so much. It’s far more enjoyable than simply sitting down and banging out a weblog publish.”
So, he thought, why not begin his personal podcast?
He took the Power-Up Podcasting course in February and March 2020, after which in mid-March he set a launch date of May 18. He would use the time in between to file a backlog of episodes.
With a number of episodes within the tank, the COVID-19 shutdown hit. With nobody scheduling elective procedures within the hospital, Brent instantly had numerous time on his arms. He determined he would use it to file as many episodes as potential.
“All of a sudden I felt like I had license to only begin reaching out to of us.” He began emailing different doctor private finance bloggers with first rate followings and asking in the event that they’d be part of him on the podcast in alternate for selling their stuff.
“And they have been all very completely happy to do this,” says Brent. But he began to marvel, what would occur if he upped the ante? He went via the archives of the management and enterprise podcasts he’d been listening to for a number of years and picked out his favourite twenty-five episodes from every one. He wrote down the names of the company on these episodes, and reached out to them.
“I used to be amazed on the sorts of those that stated sure.” They included presentation design skilled Nancy Duarte, whose TED discuss has thousands and thousands of views, Ken Coleman, whose present is a prime 10 enterprise podcast, JJ Peterson, the chief of educating and facilitation at StoryBrand, and Scott Parazynski, a doctor and former astronaut who’s additionally climbed Mount Everest.
All for a podcast that hadn’t even launched but.
Brent, along with his spouse, Catherine, and sons Drew (left) and Grant
Brent factors out that he did have numerous proof to share with potential interviewees, together with his electronic mail record and his Facebook and LinkedIn followings. But past that, when folks ask Brent how he’s landed all these company, he says, “I simply requested straight up. That was it. I simply requested.”
“I am no one from nowhere. I am simply reaching out. I could not imagine it,” he says.
“I’ve gotten loads of ‘no’s—do not get me improper. And loads of those that have simply not responded. But hey, should you ship out seventy-five emails and also you get 9 again, then unexpectedly you've got a world-class lineup.”
After only one week post-launch, The Scope of Practice Podcast was as much as 1,161 downloads, and had climbed to the #1 medical profession podcast and the #33 career-related podcast nationally. Brent’s electronic mail record grew 15 p.c over the identical interval, and he already has folks asking him to educate them on easy methods to begin their very own podcasts and construct their very own web sites.
Building His Own Brand, With a Little Outside Help
Brent hasn’t tried to monetize his enterprise but, as a substitute specializing in constructing his weblog viewers and getting his podcast off the bottom. He’s extra considering “gaining a degree of credibility, constructing some belief with of us first, and determining what folks really need earlier than I simply attempt to begin randomly promoting stuff.”
But even as soon as The Scope of Practice begins producing revenue, Brent is fairly certain he needs to maintain it as largely a facet hustle. “I do not see this as being one thing that replaces my major revenue, mainly as a result of I do not need to surrender being a doctor. I am unable to think about—even when I constructed this factor as much as be one thing tremendous large—not with the ability to deal with sufferers. I adore it an excessive amount of.”
Instead, he’s completely happy utilizing his platform to succeed in as many individuals who need assistance as potential, and at the very least break even with the enterprise—“so it’s not only a tremendous costly interest.”
He hasn’t employed anybody to assist with the enterprise but, aside from an internet designer—and for that, he additionally has to thank Pat's BYOB course.
BYOB gave Brent one thing actually useful: “a framework of easy methods to get began. Because it simply appeared like such a gargantuan activity.” Every query he encountered generated three extra, and BYOB helped him pull again from the rabbit gap. The course supplied a “good step-by-step walkthrough of easy methods to take an thought from scratch after which create one thing from that.”
BYOB additionally ready Brent for the way a lot work it will take to create a well-designed, purposeful web site. After briefly attempting to place one collectively by himself, he determined that his restricted time could be higher spent on the issues he was greatest at: “content material creation and writing and talking and issues like that.” Instead, he employed another person to design the positioning for him, which was “tremendous useful” and an enormous weight off his shoulders.
So far, that net designer is the one particular person Brent has employed to assist with The Scope of Practice. Once his podcast begins bringing in some sponsorships, he may take into account hiring a digital assistant who can tackle administrative duties so he has extra time to write down, however proper now his enterprise is a one-man present.
He’s began constructing some internet affiliate marketing relationships that he’ll lean on “as soon as the podcast will get rolling a bit bit. But he’s been working on a sufficiently small finances that he can wait some time earlier than monetizing, and give attention to constructing belief and credibility along with his viewers first.
When it involves the model itself, from the start, Brent says he “needed to construct a model that may be greater than simply me.” That’s why his enterprise known as The Scope of Practice and never BrentLacey.com. Having a model that’s not tied to him personally means it’s one which “is extra in a position to take up other people, or different avenues to succeed in folks.”
At the identical time, the entire expertise has “opened up some cool doorways. I've gotten to fulfill numerous completely different folks. And I’ve been invited to talk at a few conferences.”
Brent says he may see himself doing that a couple of times a yr and actually having fun with it.
“The Truth Is, There’s Always a Need”
Besides giving him extra free time to line up podcast company and file his pre-launch episodes, how has the COVID scenario affected Brent and his enterprise? For one, it’s proven him “that the world goes to go more and more on-line, and so having a web based presence, having a web based model, or via the airwaves with podcasting, goes to be more and more vital.”
He believes that we’ll begin seeing the “ripple results” of issues going digital in quite a lot of industries, together with healthcare, meals service, and schooling.
Ultimately, he says, “It’s simply strengthened my resolve to press ahead with the enterprise.”
The pandemic has, in Brent’s eyes, additionally amplified the state of non-public monetary administration amongst his audience. “This specific disaster has uncovered some weaknesses in monetary plans for particular person folks. This occurs each time there is a disaster, even when it’s a minor one. But the reality is, it is occurring even when there's not a disaster.”
“I believe it has introduced extra folks out of the woodwork to comprehend that they only want some assist. But the reality is, there's at all times a necessity.”
Purpose, Preparation, Execution
The largest problem he’s encountered alongside the way in which is “seeing the sheer quantity of labor that it takes to get one thing like this transferring. There's a really excessive activation power.”
Although he says he “ready for it moderately effectively, simply from listening to podcasts and studying what folks had stated,” he was nonetheless amazed at what it took to get his enterprise off the bottom.
At the identical time, his need to serve propels him onward. “I really feel an amazing—I do not know if burden's the correct phrase—however a way of urgency to assist folks. I simply see numerous want. And so, each time somebody reaches out and says, ‘Hey, pay attention, I want some assist,’ that form of drives me ahead.”
Having the help of his spouse has additionally been tremendously useful. “I do not assume I may do that if I did not have good household help at residence. She's at all times been my biggest cheerleader.”
Although Brent has been on his entrepreneurial journey for lower than a yr, he’s gleaned three massive insights that he thinks others can study from:
#1: Have a Why
“Don't simply say, ‘I need to be an entrepreneur.’ You must have an issue that you just're fixing or somebody that you just're attempting to assist, or a gaggle of individuals you need to serve. You must have one thing that you just're aiming for. Not simply, ‘I need to have a small enterprise,’ or ‘I like the concept of passive revenue. That sounds neat.’ You want a function.”
“I listened to a bunch of podcasts from completely different of us, together with Pat’s. I learn via numerous tutorials. I learn numerous blogs. I discovered so much concerning the medium that I used to be going into.”
“So usually what I've seen and heard folks say many times on podcast episodes is, folks simply spend all their time getting ready and getting ready and getting ready and by no means really do something. I consider the quote from General Patton that claims, ‘A very good plan, violently executed now, is healthier than an ideal plan subsequent week.’”
Brent Lacey is a gastroenterologist who additionally runs The Scope of Practice, a web based enterprise that serves physicians within the areas of follow administration and monetary mastery. He grew up within the Dallas, Texas, space, went to Texas A&M University for school, after which medical college in San Antonio, the place he met his spouse. His wider household nonetheless lives within the Dallas space, and his spouse's household hails from Austin.
Brent can also be an avid mini-golfer who’s performed the US ProMiniGolf Association’s Master’s course in Myrtle Beach, SC, together with roughly ninety different programs. His actual dream is to sometime personal his personal mini-golf course.