Episode 10  

 Conversation with a Minimalist Financial Entrepreneur 

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Show notes 

Jermane Cheatem is a financial entrepreneur who is living a minimalistic lifestyle and using the freedom he's created for himself to travel the world while working from anywhere. He typically reserves AirBnB places with his partner for one month at a time and is currently stationed in Malaysia when his one-week stop there turned into over 6 months once the pandemic of 2020 changed their travel plans. Jermane shares about how he's been able to negotiate some high-end places to stay with AirBnB by using the filters and planning the travel one region at a time. He talks about how he helps small businesses in the medical sector connect with banks when they need loans for things such as medical equipment. Jermane is intentional about when and how he works as he values freedom and flexibility. He and his partner are currently offering a course where they share some of the business strategies he has employed over the years.

You can reach out to Jermane by checking out his site at www.creatorslearn.com

Jermane recommended a book that inspired him, The One Thing, by Gary Keller of Keller Williams
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April Malone 0:07
Hello, hello, my name is April Malone, and I am with Yes, Iwork from home and this is the podcast. Today I have Jermane Cheathem with me and he is a digital nomad and traveling entrepreneur. Jeremy, and I'm gonna let you go ahead and introduce yourself, tell us where you are, why you are where you are, and what you're up to.

Jermane Cheathem 0:27
So I'm in Malaysia right now, I didn't ever anticipate being in Malaysia, really, I thought I was going to stop here for maybe a week. So, but then COVID happens. So it's nice here, and there's no really else to go that's really open. And I could go back to the States, but I like it here better. There's a lot of interesting things happening in the States. So I kind of wait until after the new year to see what's going on. But again, I'm an entrepreneur. So I work from a laptop and so. We specialize in helping businesses get financing for the equipment they need to operate, so I can do that from anywhere in the world. And I'm just here in Malaysia, I love it. I'm on the beach. There's the ocean right here. There's monkeys in the trees and hawks in the air. So, it's cool.

April Malone 1:13
I have so many questions. You are our first guest so far who is a digital nomad, so we're going to kind of pick your brain. I know that some people think that when they work from home that they can work from anywhere, but not all companies will allow you to do that. Are you an employee or an employer? Are you an entrepreneur? Are you working for more than one thing right now or more than one gig?

Jermane Cheathem 1:35
Yeah, so I'm an entrepreneur. So it's, it's my company. So we, you know, travel and work at the same time, so I don't have really any separation between work and play. That's kind of the way I think life should always be. So yeah, I'm not an employee. I guess I am an employee of my own company so yes and no; but yeah, I'm not working for somebody else.

April Malone 1:58
And are you managing the team? Or are you doing everything by yourself?

Jermane Cheathem 2:01
So we.. so it's me and my partner, and she does a lot of the "managing," I don't know how, I'm not really a good manager. I don't give enough details. I'm too short, I'm too direct. So she handles a lot of the more managing stuff when it comes to other people. I'm heavily more on the sales side, where I'm actually interacting, getting deals in and pushing the ball forward on as far as the sales portion of it. But yeah, we do have people working for us helping us with, you know, websites and marketing and whatever we need to make the business move forward.

April Malone 2:39
So you are embracing your strengths.

Jermane Cheathem 2:42
Without question.

April Malone 2:42
And the managing part is not your strength.

Jermane Cheathem 2:44
Yeah, it's important to know what you're good at what you're not good at.

April Malone 2:47
So it's kind of cool, because I found out that Jermane and I are both in, well, based out of Arizona, I am living here permanently at this point. And this is kind of your home base when you're not on the road?

Jermane Cheathem 2:59
Yes, I was born and raised there so I've always loved Arizona. Great people, great hospitality, great golf, great restaurants, you know, it's awesome. But you know, this is a different season in my life to travel around the world and experience other cultures, other ideas, other people.

April Malone 3:18
How long were you in Malaysia before you found out that you couldn't leave? ***Or you're not, you weren't gonna*** Did you make the decision? Or was the decision made for you?

Jermane Cheathem 3:27
Oh, no, I made the decision. When we got here, we were in *** Kuala Lumpur, we were there for about a month; and that's during the lockdown in March. And our plan was to go to Australia and Bali and go on this cruise to like Bora Bora and all this stuff. But obviously, that got nixed. And so the decision was, well, it's great here, like the people are great. There's no issues. COVID was very low here. It was like, okay, we can go back to the states and all this nonsense is going on. Or we can go to Europe, and Europe still has a lot of iffy iffy stuff going on there, because we knew the cases would probably spike in the fall, which we see are happening right now. And it's like, do I want to be locked down in Turkey or Greece? No, I don't want to be there for six months if I don't have to. But if I'm gonna be here - I'm gonna be anywhere, Malaysia's place; because it's very Western. It's just like America. It's just everyone's like, friendly times 10. So the choice was, you know, we can go back to the States; or we can go other places that are open and accepting Americans, or we can stay here. It's like, I can't get any more than what I want here. I've got a beach. I've got a couple beaches right here. I've got golf. I've got restaurants. I've got malls, I've got movie theaters. I got everything I want.

April Malone 4:41
So did you have reservations made for all these other things? Do you have airline tickets and like, a short term lease at this place you're staying or were you able to like find something really quickly when you decided to stay?

Jermane Cheathem 4:55
Yeah, we shoot from the hip. So it's like we just use Airbnb; and, literally, we just do month to month. So, like right now we might leave to go to another part of Malaysia in the next week, so I haven't even booked that yet. We just shoot from the hip, because things change so quickly. But, yeah, we had flights planned and the cruise booked; so that was all kind of im limbo so had to get all that refunded. But you know, no big deal, like life happens.

April Malone 5:20
They were pretty good about that at least?

Jermane Cheathem 5:25
You know, they want to hold on to their money if they can; so you have to kind of finagle. Yeah, but they break sooner or later.

April Malone 5:31
How long have you been living this lifestyle?

Jermane Cheathem 5:34
Well, the traveling like this, the last couple years, so two or three years; but I've been working. I mean, I've kind of worked quasi from home for like five or six years. Because even though I was in the corporate world, I was still going to the office for maybe three, four hours a day, if I'm lucky. The rest of the time, I was kind of at home, I was kind of just roaming the city, just doing my thing. So I've always kind of had a very open free lifestyle as far as work.

April Malone 5:59
So when you said you were in that when you were in the office, and you were only doing a few days or a few hours a day? Was that your choice? Were you like salaried, were you working? Is this the business that you have now, where you are kind of the founder or the boss? Or was that how you, something you had negotiated in a previous situation?

Jermane Cheathem 6:19
No, so at that point, I was an employee of someone else's business. So I basically had to show my face.

April Malone 6:25
Uh huh.

Jermane Cheathem 6:26
You know, just act like, "Oh, yeah, I'm still here." So I'd just show my face in the morning, I'd get their like, 9:30 or 10. And then I would leave and come back at around, I don't know, I'd leave like around 11:00, 11:30. I come back in to show my face for an hour or two and then leave, like, you know, for 4:00, 4:30. So just mostly just to show my face because, you know, you have to do it, but it was salary. Mostly commission, though.

April Malone 6:49
Were you out like, closing deals in the meantime or?

Jermane Cheathem 6:52
I mean, like, when I would be out of the office, I'd be closing deals most of the time. Turns out to be at the gym, I'd go to the Starbucks home and chill, do some stuff out? Or whatever. Yeah.

April Malone 7:03
Sounds like you had a quite the life there. So tell us what's your What's your story? Where did you start? And as far as your your employment or your business or your entrepreneurialship? Where do you start? And where are you at now in that?

Jermane Cheathem 7:18
Yes, so I just got tired of working for somebody else. So I just decided, "Hey, I can do this on my own." And I have better methods and techniques to do it. So I just quit and started this, my own business. And, you know, for me, sales has always been something that has kind of eluded me. I never thought of myself as like a salesperson, because it's just a conversation. I'm not selling anything, I'm just talking to you about what services and what I'm an expert at. And if it works for you, great, if not, so be it. And so, I was always growing up kind of scared to put myself out there. And I always figured, what's the best way to see if this is true? Like, is my fear real? Or is it fake? The only way for me to really do that is to go into like a sales role where you're rejected 95% of the time. And so you learn how to have tough skin and realize, no, something's people rejecting me that is rejecting what I'm offering the concept. It's not nothing personal about me. And so you learn that through repetition and without me going down that dark tunnel of trying to face my fears, I wouldn't be able to have the lifestyle have; because I'd still be in a cubicle somewhere.

April Malone 8:23
Man, this theme of facing your fears is prominent lately. I actually--the person I interviewed before you, that was the theme of his podcast--fear. So I had a conversation similar to this just a couple of days ago. But it's interesting that that some people can name that, and other people, it's difficult for them to say I actually, you know, am facing my fears. Usually they just say "Oh, I'm really good at procrastinating."

Jermane Cheathem 8:50
Yeah, that's true. 'Cause I always have this little thing I call "follow your fear." Because, if you do follow your fear, the light is on the other side of it, because everything you want in life is on the other side of fear. And the fear is just it's a fake thing. It's just an something in your mind. It's not a real thing. Everything in life is neutral. All events are conversations neutral. If I get a deal, if I lose a deal, if I get the girl, if I lose the girl, if I get the money, if I lose the money, it's all in neutral. It's just the meaning I put behind it, just it's just fear. And so when you can compartmentalize fear as just a concept, then you can say "Oh, there you are fear, okay, move aside, I'm going to move forward." But otherwise it is root. It is ruminates in your mind if you don't put it in that context. It's like controlling you, because you're not facing it. Like you're not following it. You're not leaning into it, you're avoiding it. You're running away from it, and then it controls you. It's like anything else.

April Malone 9:42
I think I have a fear of people thinking that I'm like, too sales-y. You know, I want to be regarded as someone who's genuine and who cares and who's giving and generous and, you know, here to help. And I think you know, that's one thing that holds me back is it sometimes have worried that people are going to think I'm like a "slimy salesperson," when I'm trying to say, "Hey, but I also have this product that or this, you know, service or this, whatever it is, that might be of use to you." How do you separate yourself from those sales tactics that, you know, have that bad reputation or that have the stigma?

Jermane Cheathem 10:22
Yeah, it's difficult because everyone has their own advice for you like, what works and what doesn't work, like, "Well, use this script, or use this type of landing page or do this or do that,"

April Malone 10:31

Jermane Cheathem 10:31
And at the end of the day, you have to be comfortable enough with yourself to say, you know, fit my personality. Now I have to be myself, I have to shine light and how I live the world to view me; because it's my voice, it's my music. And so you have to really come at it from a place of authenticity, like, "I'm just going to talk to you the way I normally talk to anybody. And if you understand it, great, if you don't, so be it. But I'm not selling you s***. *** I'm basically just giving you an opportunity to advance your life. Because if you don't believe in what you're selling, then you're going to need a gimmick, you're going to need a shtick, you're going to need a script. But if you believe in what you're selling, people are going to feel that energy from you.; and they're just going to buy it naturally; because they know you're offering something you believe in that you think it'll help their life. And that so that's how I approach sales in general. Because I'm thinking myself, you don't want to hear loss; because I have some cool stuff for you to take advantage of. But if you don't see it, then that's on you. I'll move on.

April Malone 11:29
So tell us again, what is it that you are selling?

Jermane Cheathem 11:33
So I guess it'd be money. But we basically do financing for small businesses. So if there's a doctor that needs an ultrasound machine, but he doesn't have the 50 grand or doesn't want to spend the $50,000, to buy it, we would come in and say, "Hey, we can do this finance it for you, and you just pay them small monthly payments to make it more feasible." So that's basically what we do.

April Malone 11:55
Ah, so are you often in that medical section? Or is it for anything, any small business?

Jermane Cheathem 12:02
We can do it for any small business. So a lot of the banks kind of forget the small businesses. So that's kind of where we step in and help them out. But it's really anything in the United States, any type of small business. My niche is just the medical realm. So we do a medical, dental, and vet; but we can probably do anything.

April Malone 12:20
So I am not very well versed in this business/finance world. Does that mean that you have to also like help secure investors for these small businesses? Are you helping do that matchmaking?

Jermane Cheathem 12:32
Exactly. That's basically our primary roles is we match the people that need the money with the banks that want to loan it out. The only difference is we're the ones that find the deals for the banks; because like I said, they're too lazy to even to look for small businesses, they want to do a $50 million deal, not a $50,000 deal. So we find the deals for them, and we get a commission for it.

April Malone 12:54
Let's talk a little bit about how you've set up your home office as you are traveling around. How many places have you been? And do you generally work from your Airbnb? Or do you generally go find the coffee shops or hang on the beach?

Jermane Cheathem 13:10
I would have to say, almost all the time, work from the Airbnb, just because it's quiet. and we pick Airbnbs that are very nice, roomy, great WiFi, where you're comfortable there. You have always have nice views of the ocean or the mountains or the city or whatever. So I'm typically always from the airbnbs. We do go to quite a bit of coffee shops. And sometimes we'll work from there from time to time, but you kind of have to be fluid; because, like, right now, there's construction downstairs, like two levels down. And so sometimes like it's too noisy, so they're like, well, we got to go somewhere else to work today, because it's just too loud. So then we'll go to a coffee shop; but, in general, we stay at the Airbnb. What was your first question? I lost it.

April Malone 13:53
Oh, like, how many places have you traveled to?

Jermane Cheathem 13:59
I mean, all throughout Europe, all throughout Central America, all throughout the United States. Quite a bit of Asia. Thailand, I mean, Bali. I mean, I don't know maybe 20-30 places? I don't know.

April Malone 14:14
Where have you not been yet?

Jermane Cheathem 14:16
I haven't been to Russia, haven't been to like South America, like Brazil. I haven't been to Australia. I guess that's it.

April Malone 14:31
New Zealand? Not yet?

Jermane Cheathem 14:32
Not New Zealand, no.

April Malone 14:34
I have been to Europe three times, but the countries that I went to aren't very well known. I've been to Albania two times and Kosovo, and then layovers.

Jermane Cheathem 14:46
What did you think about those areas?

April Malone 14:48
It was interesting. You know, you learn to love the people; and I've never had been really good at picking up languages; so I'm trying to, you know, mostly just communicate in English. And I think a lot of times when people who maybe live in an area that's not very English-based, they are really excited to have conversation. And so the first guy I ever met in Albania, he's like, "I speak seven languages, Let's talk in English!" And so, I guess it's great for them to get to practice, but I've never been really good at picking up languages. But, you know, the hospitality that you see sometimes; because we were working with like. Well, we weren't just there as tourists. We were at, like working with like, say, a local church or something and sometimes schools; and, you know, people would just welcome us into their home and like, put out a spread, and we ate a lot.

My experience is different than maybe like, backpacking through Europe kind of experience. Haven't really ever done that yet.

Jermane Cheathem 15:54
Yeah, no, I haven't either. I like to stay at nice places. So, I'm not really--I mean, I have only two backpacks. But like, we're kind of like, we're like kind of fancy nomads, where, like, you have nice stuff and nice places. But we do live out a backpack.

April Malone 16:10
So okay. Fancy backpacks?

Jermane Cheathem 16:13

April Malone 16:14
Now you keep saying "We." Who are you traveling with?

Jermane Cheathem 16:18
So me and my partner. So she's, she's part of the business. She's a lot of the fun of the operations.

April Malone 16:25

Jermane Cheathem 16:25
When it comes to like, know where to go and different things to explore. So it's always, I think it's really important, like if you are traveling digitally, like for a business or working remotely, that you have people around you that enhance your life. And they bring a different aspect of that you don't see in your personality, they bring it to light, either they're they're the mirror opposite, or they're kind of shining your goodness back on them. So it's important always surround yourself with good people. So with me and her, which is a very symbiotic relationship.

April Malone 16:59
So let's talk about, as you're saying in these AirBnBs, how do you--Okay, I've had to do this. Before I did that I went to Minnesota, my brother was getting married, and we rented a house, it wasn't a nice Airbnb, it was an older home. The guy told us that "Oh, you won't need air conditioning, because it's just the end of May, beginning of June. It's not that hot. You don't even need air conditioning until it's like July." Well, we've been living in the Phoenix area, you know, for four years at this point or three years at that point, I think. And we're kind of getting used to this dry heat. So, we get up to Minnesota, where I'm from; but you forget. You forget what humidity feels like. And so when it's 95 degrees with like 95% humidity, we were just like soaked. Like just I mean that the air was so thick with humidity, and it was literally miserable. My sister was renting the house with us, and they went and got a hotel the next night. They're like we can't do that. And, so, but I teach English as a second language to a lot of kids over, usually in like China. Some are in other countries, Japan, or they're living around the world; but their main language might have been Mandarin. So I was working as I was traveling, and that's the first thing you do, is you start like eyeballing the whole place and like figuring out where there's lamps; because for me, I'm also on camera. So I'm finding lamps, I took like a little gosh, what was it? It was like a little vanity, like an antique vanity; and I'm like, okay, that's gonna be my desk. I'll just sit on the floor or whatever. So what do you do? Do you like do most of them come equipped with like business? Oh, the WiFi was terrible. My hotspot was much better. It was the worst WiFi I've ever experienced it was about as good as dial up. So do you do you have to screen for places that have excellent likeEthernet connection? or?

Jermane Cheathem 19:01
Yeah, I mean, the great thing about Airbnb, the app. is you can really screen for whatever you want. And they have like the plus also so you can always have the highest highest end. You know, if you get a plus or if you kind of filter out you can see who's who and what's what on Airbnb. So you just find really nice plush places and you're going to get everything you want. So you're going to get plenty of places if you need to be on camera, you know plenty of nooks or angles or views or lighting you're going to find it because there's so many rooms there's many this big you know, and there's common areas too you can utilize as well downstairs or and then you can always ask this last year Airbnb Jose was how fast the Wi Fi but yeah, I've never had any I've never had any issues.

April Malone 19:46
You've never been surprised.? You've never like walked in and been like, "oh."

Jermane Cheathem 19:48
Oh, yeah, I definitely have; and I leave.

April Malone 19:51

Jermane Cheathem 19:52
I was, when was this about, this is right before COVID. So this must have been February, we were in Thailand; and we're at a Airbnb I think for a week and.. maybe it was Koh Samui? I can't remember which island; but we get there, and the Wi-Fi was spotty, in and out. And then there was construction across the street. It was like loud as hell. And so I hit up the Airbnb host and said, "This is unacceptable." And so they refunded us and we got to a much better B&B the next day, so, no biggie.

April Malone 20:20
Wow. So do you just like basically do your Airbnb search based off of the filter, like just looking for the best deal or the best quality? Plus Plus?

Jermane Cheathem 20:30
Both. I usually start with the best quality, and then I start negotiating.

April Malone 20:35
Negotiating with your partner or negotiate with the host?

Jermane Cheathem 20:41
With the host, with the host. Oh, we're on the same team as far as--we want the best deal with the best quality.

April Malone 20:55

Jermane Cheathem 20:56
So, from that point, you find the best place, and then you start negotiating from there. Because, we're in a pandemic, so I have a lot of leverage. But even normally, like, there's not a lot of people going for months and months at a time; and if they can get it filled up for a whole month versus them getting, you know, three weekends, it makes more sense to them. And they look at my track record on Airbnb to see, "Oh, this guy's traveled all over the world, he has five star ratings, he's not going to trash the place or whatever." So.

I don't think I realized that they were negotiable.

Everything is negotiable. Everything. So, yeah, that's kind of my methodology when it comes to trying to find best places on AirBnB.

April Malone 21:30
So, we have three little children. Well, the oldest is 9, and the youngest if 5; but we've kind of been in that like parenting small children stage for the last better part of 10 years. My husband has never left the country. I did a lot of traveling when I was younger, like from my teens into my 20s; and then we got married in our early 30s. So, we've never lived this life together, even just traveling in the states to go on a family vacation; our destination is almost always family, because we live in Arizona, my family is in Minnesota; and his family is in Arkansas, Missouri, Tennessee, and everywhere. So, basically, if we ever have a chance where we can both get away at the same time, 95% of the time it's going to be to go see his parents or my parents or, you know, brothers or sisters, something like that. I'm trying to even just like imagine what that would be like to have that freedom where you could be like "What country do you want to go to next?" Or do you guys just look at a map and say "Well, we haven't been here" or do you just look at the coolest highest rated AirBnBs and then just follow that?

Jermane Cheathem 21:44
So, I do two methods. On Airbnb, I'll zoom out to the whole world, and I'll have my criteria into my search, and it'll show me what pops up all over the world. And I'll decide--I find the best places and then start the negotiation from there. Or sometimes the best places are already heavily discounted. It's like, for what we pay in the States is crazy versus like what you can get in some of these countries that are 10 times better. And, so, I'll do that. And so maybe-- so say, I'm in Thailand right now. And I have to, I find somewhere in, say, Canada. It's like, okay, that's kind of a far trek. So I usually will, I'll pin it and save it for when I'm in that general vicinity, ou know, maybe I'm in Oregon or something. So I've always have that location and that particular Airbnb to reference. But I'll usually look within my region. Like, right now I'm in Southeast Asia. So I'll probably look within Southeast Asia for other Airbnbs that we could go to, maybe a place I haven't been before, that pops up on my radar. So, I usually do it regionally from where I'm at; and as I bounce around from region to region, I look at the next region in my vicinity.

I like it. That's good. So what is it like to work when you're traveling? Do you usually take a few days off in between, or do you just get right back to it? Like do you ever stop? Or do you take a week off in between each major region that you go from?

I don't really know what you mean by stop, I guess I never stop, but I don't see it as work, I guess you'd say. So it's like, I don't know. I don't--it's not like I'm, I work for myself, so it's not like there's a clock I have to follow or punch, you know, a time...

April Malone 24:18

Jermane Cheathem 24:18
...you know, time stamp or anything. It's just like, if there's things I need to work on, then I work on them. And then I go back to my fun or go back to chillin' or whatever it is, go back to playing tennis; but it's like maybe an hour or two a day. It's nothing extraordinary. So, I never stop basically.

April Malone 24:35
Did you say you only work for an hour or two a day?

Jermane Cheathem 24:38

April Malone 24:39
Tell us more about how that works. Because I think there's a lot of people in this world--I've been hourly, almost my entire working life. I've gone from like literally an hourly employee job to making my own hours as an independent contractor. And, right now, I'm dabbling in both. I'm like half in and half out, you know, starting a company. haven't exactly monetized it to the degree that I'd like to. You know, there's still a lot of things that I need to do in order for it to be, like, sustainable. So I still am, like, teaching in the middle of the night. You know, I wake up in the morning to, like, get a couple of hours of teaching. And so when I'm teaching for these companies in China, or whatever, they're not very understanding when you need to cancel, like, so you need to plan what you open around if you're going to be traveling; and you if you open something and then they fill it up with students and your travel plans have changed. People are teaching out of airports, you know, or like in a hotel bathroom. I mean, just, people have done everything, just to keep the hours so you don't lose that, you know, relationship with the company that you have. They're not always, like I said, very forgiving when it comes to that sort of thing. So I can't exactly imagine what it's like to have that much flexibility, because I'm not there yet.

Jermane Cheathem 25:59
Yeah, I mean, my number one thing in life is freedom. And, so, I've built in designed and engineered my life, to make sure I attain that. And so I have to structure my day so I'm the one in control and my clients are not. And, so, I'm not like always available. And the reason why is I don't want to be controlled, because I like my freedom. But, also, I have to structure my day because I travel around the world.

April Malone 26:27

Jermane Cheathem 26:28
So there's only certain windows that are actually feasible for me to work. I'm not going to work wake up in the middle of the night to work.

April Malone 26:34

Jermane Cheathem 26:35
It's not worth it to me.

April Malone 26:36
Which I've done, for a few years.

Jermane Cheathem 26:39
So, so for me, I can return emails and calls during this window. And it's usually right now in the morning, like from seven to nine. And that's the only time I work, because back home, it's like 4pm.

April Malone 26:51
You're catching people at the end of their work day.

Jermane Cheathem 26:54
So the people I work with, they know, "I haven't heard from Jermane all day, well, he always returns my call or email at four o'clock, I'll just be patient." So you almost train people to work on your schedule versus me trying to cater to them. It's just the way my personality works. So, that's kind of how I structured it.

April Malone 27:13
I like it. Yeah.

Jermane Cheathem 27:15
Yeah, 'cause I can never be an hourly employee because, or even hourly anything; because then I'm trading my time for money. And life's too short. Life's too beautiful for me to explore, to experience for me to be trading my time for money. So I've always knew that I had to structure it. So I was paid commission. So, I work 10 minutes or I work 10 hours, it doesn't matter. Whatever it takes to get the job done. But, yeah.

April Malone 27:47
And, obviously, it must be paying the bills. You know, you have found something that's working for you. Are you also paying for a place back home? Or are you have you guys put everything into storage or just gotten rid of everything and hit the road?

Jermane Cheathem 28:01
Yeah, so we got rid of everything, sold our houses, sold or returned our cars that are on lease. We don't really have a storage. I mean, I have an office back home. And I have a very--I think 5x5 storage, there's really nothing in it. So most stuffs gone. Most stuffs gone, and life is so much better that way. Because you'd be surprised how much stuff's going on in the background of your mind, thinking about all the stuff you have. And all you got to update this or get this insurance policy on this or do that, you know, it's always something. But when that's all gone, it's just like, you're kind of just free just to be.

April Malone 28:36
Right. Do you guys rent cars? Or do you just live where you can walk everywhere when you're out and about?

Jermane Cheathem 28:44
So just walk or Uber--or, out here, it's called Grab, but same company?

April Malone 28:51
Public transport?

Jermane Cheathem 28:53
No, not really. We tried that before in South Central America like the whole chicken bus thing. Like I said, we're too fancy for that. It didn't work out. Like, we were stuck on like a roadblock for like some--there was some protest about the president or something like four hours. It was miserable. No, it was--so I was like, now we're gonna fly going forward.

April Malone 29:14
Yeah, I can see that.

Jermane Cheathem 29:17
We just take Ubers, Ubers everywhere.

April Malone 29:19
Let's talk about family. I was just talking about my family and how we travel to see them. What about you guys? Do you have family that are like, "Come home! Come celebrate with us!" Or what is your family life like?

Jermane Cheathem 29:31
Yeah, so our family still lives in Arizona. And, no, they're not really--I mean, people were scared when when COVID happened. They were like, "You guys better come home. Otherwise, you're not gonna be able to get home. You're gonna be stuck over there. And I know Americans, and I was thinking myself, you guys are gonna lose your sh*t when you can't go to Starbucks, when you have to wear masks, when you your freedom is constricted. Because we've seen it happen over here. And, in Asia, people are used to wearing masks. They've been wearing masks for decades.

April Malone 29:57

Jermane Cheathem 29:58
They won't panic, and there's more of a communal environment over here, so there's no individuals. So I knew them saying, "You're--it's going to be worse over there. You should come home to America." I'm like, "Man, you guys don't know what you're talking about." So I thought that was funny. But, so they wanted us to come home at that point. Yeah, it was more of fear of the whole COVID thing. But, yeah, so when we get home, we get home. I don't know when that will be. And then when we get home, then we'll see you; but, like, you know, everyone has to live their life. And we--to me, proximity is interesting, because I can feel like I'm with people, even without me physically being there with them. Because memories are very important. So, I always kind of lean on like memories and ideas and things I've learned from people; and it almost makes the relationship more rich when you have that separation, because you--it'll give you time to reflect on how these people individuals have impacted your life when you have separation from them, and you actually can process it better than actually them being in your life like day in and day out, or week in and week out. Because you almost take them for granted, and you forget about these little nuanced things they taught you that you'd never realized until they were missing.

April Malone 31:11
Absence makes the heart grow fonder?

Jermane Cheathem 31:14
Yeah, to a certain degree. Yeah, or just more clear.

April Malone 31:18
Interesting, we've actually found--well, my relationship with my family is a little unique. I come from a very large family. But we--I've lived away from Minnesota where they all are. I have one sister in Atlanta, and then everyone else, literally everyone else, is in Minnesota. And we'll go six months, and sometimes 18 months before we see them again. You know, just because sometimes travel is expensive, and we've got little ones or we're working. When the pandemic hit, we started a thing. Like we have never done this, you know, for these last 10 years that I've been away from Minnesota; but we started doing Zoom. My mom has never been really great with video chat, and she misses you know, the grandkids. And now we're like, you know, "We're probably not going to come home for Christmas." I have a brother and a sister who are each having a baby; and it breaks my heart, but I'm not sure how long it's going to be before I get to see them. But we are, every single week, on Zoom, which is new. And, you know, not everyone logs in every week. I start the meeting every week, sometimes I'm late; and they love me, thankfully. But I've seen more of my family in the last six months than I have seen them in the last 10 years, literally. And it's kind of great. And I have one brother who won't come on, he's like, "Yeah, I don't like to do, you know, online stuff." And I'm thinking I'm getting to know the rest of my brothers and sisters better now than I had before.

Jermane Cheathem 32:50
Yeah. No, that's awesome. It's obviously different when you have kids, I think too, because, you know, the grandparents want to see the kids quite a bit. So a different dynamic. So I don't have any kids. So that might play somewhat of a role as far as like, I'm not doing Zooms all the time or anything like that. But yeah, it's awesome. Technology--it can be used for good or it can be used for ill, it just depends on what side of the fence you want to be on.

April Malone 33:13
That is true. So how do you use technology for your communication as you're trying to land these, you know, deals or create these connections for people who are needing their financing? Are you on the phone? Are you on zoom? How do you do it?

Jermane Cheathem 33:31
So I really don't do Zoom for business stuff. I'll use phone calls, email, and LinkedIn. And LinkedIn is so great, because you can be very strategic and pinpoint people.

April Malone 33:41

Jermane Cheathem 33:42
So you know exactly what they do. And so I can find, you know, guys and girls that sell ultrasound machines and contact them directly and say, "Hey, do your doctors need financing for your machines that cost 50 grand?" Like, "Oh, yeah, we do!" and make it easier to sell. "Great. Let's team up." So, LinkedIn, really email, and just phone calls.

April Malone 34:01
So that filters system, filtering for people.

Jermane Cheathem 34:06
Yeah, for sure. It's just the easy way to do it. Otherwise, like I used to--back in the day, I was making 300 cold calls a day. So I would, you know, just beat my head against the wall because I was getting rejected 295 times. I'd get a few yeses, but it just wasn't efficient. It wasn't a good use of my time. And, like I was saying, I was exchanging my time for money. So, now, I leverage my time for money.

April Malone 34:30
That's when you were an employee or on commission?

Jermane Cheathem 34:34

April Malone 34:35
But their methods, not yours?

Jermane Cheathem 34:38
Their methods, yeah. I found much better methods.

April Malone 34:41
Do you want to tell any secrets? Not necessarily for finance but just for selling. That's not something I feel like I'm a very strong person in, it's not a skill I'm very strong in.

Jermane Cheathem 34:53
Yeah, I think the smartest thing to do is... it kind of is a universal law. Really. It's you leverage other people's networks, I guess you'd say, like, if I meet you, if I'm, if you like me, and we click, then hopefully, just, my energy alone will help you spread my name to other people you know, instead of me trying to go to every individual person you know, I just hope that you're going to read my message for me. And so, that's just kind of a universal thing. Like, even if you're like, at a grocery store, if you're interacting with people with like, energy and like passion, and like, you're just asking, like, "Where's the bread at?" and other people are watching you. They're seeing, "Oh, this person, he or she has, like, there's something about this person," and it just gravitates more people to you. So it's no different in business. Like, if you if you bring the right energy, you're just gonna get business. If you're scared, you're not going to get business. This is kind of like, it's just the law of nature.

April Malone 35:51
What do you think you learn from making less 300 calls a day?

Jermane Cheathem 35:57
That, that 99% of people are cool, they're friendly, they're nice, they're cordial, they're welcoming. and the ones that aren't, they just need a hug. They're just in pain.

April Malone 36:09

Jermane Cheathem 36:10
That's not learned, though. Like, everybody's cool. Like, my preconceived notion was that, you know, everybody was going to be bitter or upset or not like me, whatever. And it's just not true. So, when I, now I come into the room with that kind of mindset. I get good results, because I expect people to like me, to welcome me, to be friendly to accept me.

April Malone 36:34
Were you calling businesses? Or were you calling individuals?

Jermane Cheathem 36:41
***Uh, I?***

Both. I was calling. So, for example, if I was in the medical industry, I would call 300 doctors a day, trying to talk to the doctor. But now--

April Malone 36:53
And I was a secretary, and I was the person who would stop you from talking to the doctor. So I've been on that side, too.

Jermane Cheathem 36:59
Yeah. And they're trying to stop pretty hard. So that's, kind of goes, like, when you bring good energy, you can get past some of the secretaries and the gatekeepers, because they're like this person is not hitting me with a shtick or a script. He's just being authentic. He thinks he can help the doctor. So I'll take the message, or I'll get him through or, you know, you're going to work a little bit harder, because he's like--you could even sense it, right? And, so the difference is, now I call the people that sell the equipment exclusively. I don't call any of the people that would actually buy it or use it. Just sellers, because then they're getting me into their network.

April Malone 37:39
Got it.

Jermane Cheathem 37:39
So I do a fraction of the work.

April Malone 37:41
Wow, that's smart.

Jermane Cheathem 37:44
They do the work for me, basically.

April Malone 37:47
Well, where can people find you?

Jermane Cheathem 37:50
So they can find us at creatorslearn.com. So, what we put together is a course to teach people exactly what we do for our business model. So, hopefully, they can emulate it and live this type of lifestyle; because it's ridiculous. Like, we have to share this with other people, because it's 2020, and people should not be working in cubicles or doing things that they don't want to be doing. And they should make as much money as they want with as much freedom as they want. So we call it creatorslearns.com because this believe in two types. You know, not black and white, not male and female, not American, not Chinese. There's creators, and there's victims. That's it. So you get to choose what you want to be. So it's a place for creators that consider themselves creators to go and learn different business models, different business concepts, different mindset ideas, just a plethora of different things. But, you know, right now, the first program is the Business Finance Blueprint which is the course that teaches people exactly what we do for a living.

April Malone 38:46
And this can be applied, like you are mostly working with the people who sell the ultrasound machines, but this can be extrapolated to any kind of sales? Or are there certain people that will benefit more?

Jermane Cheathem 39:02
Well, it would only be for anybody that wants to have a business of their own. But they don't have to focus on medical, they could focus on, I don't know, construction equipment; or they could focus on video production equipment or restaurant equipment or dental equipment. It doesn't matter what industry you want to focus on. As they're in the States, they can do it. And you don't need any previous, like, sales experience or finance background. Anybody can do this. It's just a matter of can you talk to people? And the math is like, if you can do a tip on your waiter's bill and tip them, then you can do this type of math. It's like for children; so, it's very simple. But nobody knows about it, because kind of a secret niche industry. Everybody thinks that people go to the bank to get loans for their businesses, but the banks--we find the deals for the banks. So it's kind of a secret.

April Malone 39:52
That's really interesting. So, one more time, where will they find you? Creators Learn?

Jermane Cheathem 39:57
www.creatorslearn.com. And we can sign up for the call and discuss it further and see if they're a good match; and, hopefully, we can help people

April Malone 40:08
So they can talk with you. So, okay, so I am in Arizona. So we connected at 7am your time which is 4pm my time which would be five or six or seven o'clock, depending on what timezone you are in the USA. So if you're gonna have a call with Jermane, you can expect it to be after 4pm.

Jermane Cheathem 40:24
Without question.

April Malone 40:26
If you're in the US, unless you're traveling.

Jermane Cheathem 40:28
Yeah, if you're in the US, unless I'm in Canada or Mexico or back in the States, but for now, yeah.

April Malone 40:34
Do you keep your LinkedIn like, updated about, like, where you are or the timezone that you're working in? Or is it just kind of like, email you or message you and find out?

Jermane Cheathem 40:45
Yeah, you'll find out, because you'll know by my schedule when I'm available.

April Malone 40:49
Okay, got it. All right. Well, what would you like to leave us with today? Do you have any wisdom that you'd like to share with people who might be interested in not just working from home, but maybe working on the road?

Jermane Cheathem 41:05
I would guess I would say just figure out ways to engineer your life, even if you're working from home or on the road, figure out ways to engineer your life so you're in control, and you're not controlled by your customers or your boss or your circumstances. Like, take ownership for where you're at and where you want to go and then make decisions based on that. There's just--not someone that's just like, "Well, I can't do this, because--" Just go do it, make it happen. Life's too short, it's too beautiful to miss out on all this cool stuff. So, just do that.

April Malone 41:43
It sounds a little bit like some of the things--I read the Tim Ferriss book, The 4-Hour Workweek years ago, I think not too long after it came out. Do you have anything that you have consumed or read or watched or heard that has helped you embrace this lifestyle or this way of thinking about your freedom and your control of your own life and time?

Jermane Cheathem 42:06
Yeah, I mean, that's a great book. That definitely played a huge influence on thinking about how I could structure and engineer my environment. Tony Robbins, Awaken the Giant Within was a great one. Because it's all mindset, this is all, it's all comes down to what's going on in your head. A great business book, I think a lot of people, especially nowadays, we're a little too scattered. We don't know, we're doing too much stuff. And so it's the Gary Keller book called The One Thing; and he's Keller Williams Realty. And his whole philosophy is focus on one thing, like, whatever you're doing, just do the one thing to the best of your ability, and don't get fragmented in doing multiple stuff. And it doesn't matter if it's in a relationship. Whatever it is, stay very, very focused. And I can contribute a lot of my success to being very focused to my one thing, which is equipment financing, I've been doing it for 18 years; because I didn't get fragmented trying to do real estate or trying to do, you know, working capital or trying to do whatever stock trading courses. I have always only done equipment financing. And, so, now I use that leverage and that knowledge and that expertise to give me all the freedom and income I wanted. So that's kind of the premise of his book,

April Malone 43:21
Kind of narrowing down things to like a niche.

Jermane Cheathem 43:24
To a niche. Exactly. And sticking to it.

April Malone 43:26
I'm trying to think if I own that book, I bought a few books that were more about, like time management, because that's not my strong suit; and I guess sometimes people think, you know, day by day, like, I need to focus on one thing for the day, and I need to get that one thing done. Is that where you're going too? Or is it more just focus hard on the financing for medical equipment?

Jermane Cheathem 43:48
Yeah, I'm talking about the macro, the financing for medical equipment, the big macro, that's my one thing. So if everything I'm doing within this single moment is not getting me further within that macro picture of equipment financing, then I'm getting distracted. You know, if I'm looking at YouTube videos about which is the best stock to pick, then I'm getting distracted from my one thing, which would be equipment financing. So luckily, at this point, I have enough free time, I can focus on a lot of different stuff. But when you're first starting out, you have to be very, very disciplined on what you're focusing on; because then you can leverage that, and then you can open up your day to, you know, maybe you're spending eight hours a day or 12 hours a day on this one thing. But after you do that for a while, then you're only spending half an hour, an hour a day on that one thing; and now you can focus on some other one thing. You can have multiple one things in different genres in your life. Right, you know, maybe if it's a relationship, maybe your focused only on, I don't know, massages, giving massages to your partner. That's your one thing. That's how you create intimacy. I mean, whatever it is, you can figure it out, but, it just makes--and I think that would take care of the time management issue too. Because, now you're focused. Time management's about being distracted.

April Malone 44:57
It's funny that you mentioned the massage thing because just a couple months ago, it's not so much creating intimacy; but I have had like some literal like painful parts in my shoulders and like my calves and things like that, and so we have been going to YouTube; and I've been like watch the massage therapist like training videos and just massage that one part. And it definitely does create, you know, a strong relationship; because I'm thankful, very grateful for that help, you know, to get me to my next, like, professional massage, which don't come often enough. How does being on a podcast, contribute or drive you toward your one thing? Or if it's one of those other things that you have time for now?

Jermane Cheathem 45:40
Well, right now, my one thing is the Creators Learn, the course. So this definitely helps; because, well, actually, this is--I guess my one thing is kind of more... this is an interesting question now that I'm thinking about it. It's more, I think a lot of the whole podcasting thing is almost therapeutic to a certain degree, because I'm already going to talk about these things inside my head anyways. So, now I'm just vocally expressing them. So it's almost like a an outloud journal for me to have these conversations with you; because it allows me to express my thoughts and ideas to other people, hear their thoughts and ideas. And then, in the same breath, I can introduce them to this program in this court, that kind of share some of my thoughts and ideas about how I built this life, and give them an opportunity to emulate it. So my one thing is the course but also the way my method with the podcasting is kind of a therapeutic way for me to already do what I'm doing, but haven't helped more than just myself.

April Malone 46:42
Right? Has the course launched yet, or hasn't launched before? Or is this going to be the first go at it?

Jermane Cheathem 46:51
So it we do have some students in it, but we're capping this first initial class so we can make sure it's structured perfectly. We're going to have a lot of hands-on guidance from us, both of us. So we want to make sure that we're giving everybody everything they need to be successful. And, so, the first class is filling up; but once that's filled full, then we'll stop it, and then we'll probably reintroduce it at a later date. But it's I guess you would consider it the first major class, yeah.

April Malone 47:23
Yeah, it's like, what do they they call that? Something founders, like the founders. I don't know, the initial group.

Jermane Cheathem 47:31
Yeah, we call it the inner circle; because it's a small bubble of people. There's no riffraff out there, it's just people that really want to be serious about living this type of life.

April Malone 47:41
And then what format is your course? Because I know there are a lot of different ways that people do things. I'm looking at probably building the course in the next few weeks as well. But you know, are you dripping things out? Do they? Are you doing lives? Are you--what format is it?

Jermane Cheathem 47:54
Yeah, so I think it's like 10 or 12 modules that go through every aspect of the business, crossing every T dotting every I. So there's videos, video tutorials, so it's video courses. And then there's exercises they can do. There's weekly live calls or Q&A for any questions they have. So--my expertise is not on that part of it, per se. She really handles a lot of that part of it, as far as how its structured, I'm more of the I guess the talking head. I kind of know the sales part of it and like, okay, so the bigger picture of it. But yeah, that's the basic premise, the live calls, the video tutorials and exercises; and the thing is like 12 weeks; but I think we're doing it at your own pace. If you want to do it, knock it all out, and you're like really motivated? Great. If you want to take a step by step, you can do it that way too. We've kind of catered to everybody.

April Malone 48:56
Excellent. So one more time. Where do we find you?

Jermane Cheathem 48:59
creatorslearn.com so they can get all the information there.

April Malone 49:02
Great. Thank you so much, Jermane. It's been a great time talking with you and hearing about your journey, adventures And some really good ideas. I will be looking that up, and I I hope we can chat again sometime soon. Thank you so much.

Jermane Cheathem 49:17
Awesome. Thanks for having me.

April Malone 49:18
All right. Well, this is April Malone with Yes, I work from home. And today. I had Jermane Cheatham. And we're both from Arizona, but he is out in Malaysia right now. All right. Take care, Jermane. See you next time.

Jermane Cheathem 49:31
Bye, thanks.