089: John Paragon | Investing More in Coaches and Self-Education to Shape Your Future

Today, we’ve got the founder of 30 Days to Profit, John Paragon. He talks about how to offer a path through self-education to help shape the future.  John explains why he invests more in his coaches today than he made at his first nine to five job and why he only teaches what he’s currently doing to help mitigate his client’s risk. Check it out!

[02:22 – 14:23] John’s learning journey and masterminds

The Mastermind Effect:  02:09

Let’s dive into it. When you and I were younger, the ways we learned and took in the information drastically changed over the last five to 10 years. When we’re younger, they were textbooks, teachers, friends, family, and our co-workers, but it’s a sliver of what’s possible out there. How has your learning changed from your early years versus today?

John Paragon:  02:44

The Dunning Kruger effect is something that sprung to mind. When American researchers came to understand why people have limited knowledge in the subject, they seem to think they have huge knowledge. Whereas people who have a high level of knowledge in a particular subject come to realize they don’t know much. My point on this is, the more I learn, the more I’ve come to realize I don’t know all of our grand scheme of things.

When it comes to business, everything I learned, I  realize there’s another thing I don’t know. We don’t know what we don’t know. I’m always open to learning, and it’s a very big world out there. When it comes to business, it is a very complicated topic, and there are lots of pieces to it. I’ve had to force myself to be open to learning new pieces, every possible opportunity. One of the biggest help is connecting with other people. Understanding certain people specialize in different areas and no longer try to understand every single area, being the jack of all trades. Once upon a time, that was me. I built my own websites, designed my own business cards, created my own logos, did my own customer service, did my own market, and did my own Facebook ads. I had to learn not to do that and let go and accept that I need to hire the best people to do that for me. That’s one of the big lessons I’ve learned when running a business. As a kid, it was different. I was always brought up with the intention that if you lacked in one area, you have to focus on that and be average at everything rather than embrace areas that you aren’t good at and become the master of that. It was a case of just become an average of everything. I had to adapt over the years.



The Mastermind Effect:  04:26

Jack of all trades, master of none. How much are you holding yourself back by not getting a coach to help direct that, or by not surrounding yourself with the people? You’re like, “Well, I can’t afford to get a coach. I can’t afford to get someone to run my Facebook ads.” What does it cost you not to get that coach? What does it cost you not to get that right person now?  Could you get burnt along the way? Yes, but you learn by surrounding yourself and replacing the wrong people in your life with the right people.

John Paragon:  05:11

I’ve gone through a good few teams of customer service advisors and development teams throughout my business career. It’s very hard to find the right people throughout your journey. You’re going to make some mistakes, and you’re going to get burned. There are going to be obstacles and speed bumps. There will be things in your way that will slow you down. There’s going to be some pain, and the pain will be your greatest teacher as long as you are open to learning from it. There’s always something you can take away from every situation.

Some people say everything happens for a reason. I understand the logic behind that. It doesn’t quite sit well with me. I prefer the idea that there’s something good to take away from every situation. Everything that happens, there is always something to take away from it. Good or bad. If you are getting burned throughout your business creation or struggling with things, there’s always something to take away from it.

The Mastermind Effect:  06:09

You need to learn from those moments. Those are teachable moments that if you choose to continue to make the same mistake, at a certain point, you got to look internally and be like, “It’s me; it’s not everybody else.”

Talking about you and how you take in information. I think we have more access to information and people. It’s overwhelming and a little confusing at the end of the day how you go through those weeds. Some people look for an accountability buddy, a mentor, a mastermind coach, an online course, and lots of ways to learn and take in information. Who are you currently learning from? And more importantly, how did you connect with them?

John Paragon:  06:52

I have a business coach, and my business coach has five different coaches. He has a relationship coach, health coach, business coach, and mindset Coach. My health coach gives me guidance on exercise because I don’t like to exercise, but I know how much I need it. It has a huge impact on my productivity on my business, and my mental clarity. It took me a long time to realize this; this was a very painful lesson I wish I had started sooner. I’m soon to bring on a relationship coach to help communicate things in the family with children. If I’m going to find something frustrating, I can bring it to the relationship coach specializing in different areas.

It’s been a huge deal for me to bring on coaches that have already achieved what I want to achieve to help me get to that point. I spent many years choosing. This was back when I decided to be the jack of all trades, the master of none. I chose not to hire a coach because all I could see was in the short term, that’s going to cost me X amount of pounds or dollars. I couldn’t measure what the returns would be on that investment in a long time. For me, it didn’t seem a worthy risk. But now, I cannot comprehend the idea of not having a business coach. There are so many things that happen on a day-to-day basis to have someone around you who you can bounce ideas around with, you can brainstorm, and you can figure out ways to overcome obstacles. Ideally, if that someone has already overcome those obstacles, they can tell you the quickest way to do it. They often save you a tremendous amount of money. They almost guaranteed to save you a tremendous amount of time. There’s no quicker way to get the results you want to achieve than finding someone else who has already achieved it and asking them how they did it. Learning to do it yourself can take a ridiculous amount of time.

For example, I do quite a bit of racing. If I want to reach a certain level, the quickest way to improve my lap times or my championship results is finding someone who is consistently coming first and speaking to them and spending some time with them. Ask them how they’re doing it and what they are doing differently that I’m not. Or I can spend my time on the track racing, and hopefully, I’ll pick up some pieces over the space of five years. It will be much cheaper and quicker for me to ask the person who is consistently winning how he does it. He can teach me, and I can eventually get to that level. That’s the plan.

The Mastermind Effect:  09:17

I love how you described where you’re at where you want to go. The quickest way to get there was inserting the right coach or mentor in your life who’s doing it and has done it. Number one and saying, “I need help,” because the cost not to do that will be stepping in a landmine. You won’t be able to see around that corner.  These people have done it and are doing it from what it sounds like they’re still in the trenches with you.

John Paragon:  09:48

One of my biggest tips on that particular subject is finding someone who will work with the “done with you” model, which is a course that works with you. There is “done by you,” which basically “here is a course and some modules, you learn from that go do your thing, thank you very much for your money, have a good day, I wish you the best.” Then you’ve got “done with you,” where you have a coach that spends time with you, possibly one-on-one in an ideal scenario. It can cost a little bit more, but one on one does work tremendously well. Then you’ve got “done for you,” which you see sometimes depends on what the model is. It’s basically a coach or a team that will come in and does things actually for you. You’re outsourcing work to different people,

I prefer the “done with you” model. My coach works with me pretty closely, and I work pretty closely with my clients. My clients have me on WhatsApp, and they connect with me as many times as they need because there are random things that pop up on a day-to-day basis specific to their business. There’ll be a specific problem that needs a specific solution. Most of the time, I have already overcome this particular problem, and if I haven’t, I have the resources and network around me to figure out a solution pretty quickly, which is why I give them that support. They know they can come to me at any time. Then we do the weekly stuff anyway. We’d dig down deep into their business and move the business forward.



The Mastermind Effect:  11:09

I love how you put that together the “done by you,” the “done with you,” or the “done for you.” Depending on who you are, each of them could work. I fall in the middle; I like the done with you. Then there are times you need to outsource the “done for you.” Each one has its different price point and speaks to a different person.

A lot of people get stuck. You were talking about this, their weekly thing, they WhatsApp you. They get stuck on how to execute what’s in their head, and we’re still going through a pandemic. No matter where you’re at in the world, we’re still going through this. I think it’s causing a reset and how we’re able to accomplish things and do things differently. How has masterminds and coaching helps you when you’re looking to reset and get unstuck when working with your clients or working with your coaches?

John Paragon:  11:58

My biggest issue when I get unstuck was a repeat offender, and it comes out of a lack of clarity. That was my biggest reason for being stuck in any particular situation. I can’t overcome an obstacle because of a lack of clarity on the direction that I’m heading or aiming for. If you don’t know where you’re going, it’s incredibly hard to reach your destination. You cannot just drive to the end of the street, close your eyes, and driving around the direction; you’re never going to get to the place you want to go. I am one of those people. I’m in the new age where I don’t remember any direction I go. It just goes into Sat Nav, and I follow the setup. My Sat Nav is my destination coach, and he tells me where to go exactly. He tells me when there’s an issue, and it helps me overcome that before I get there. Of course, there are things that pop up along the way, and I have to figure out that way around. I’m all for the analogies, but that’s the best way for me to explain it.

When I am stuck, it’s down to a lack of clarity. A coach is there to help me see from another perspective on what’s happening because sometimes there’s something deeper that’s happening within you. When you’ve got someone from an outside perspective that can analyze what you are doing, there are some incredible insights. I am blessed enough to have an amazing coach. I spend an absolute fortune. I spend more now on my coach in the space of two or three months than I used to earn annually per year at my last nine to five. I spend a tremendous amount of money now. I understand that money that I spend saves me tremendous amounts of money and time. It’s earning me money because I can provide more value to my clients. What I learned from him, I can pass on to my clients, and I give them tremendous value without too.

The Mastermind Effect:  13:53

That’s it’s so true. When you realize it’s not a cost, it’s an investment. People look at investments like the stock market or the housing market. They leave out the only one that they can control; the best investment in your life is yourself. You can control yourself. You can’t control the stock market no matter what country you’re in, and you can’t control the housing market. So, why not invest in yourself and know that when you do that, it’s the best investment you get your highest ROI (Return On Investment) out there.

[14:24 – 24:39] Self-Education and John’s Reality

The Mastermind Effect: 

Masterminds and coaching have been around for a long time. It started with the apostles, who probably the first mastermind out there. Then, Benjamin Franklin created the Leather Apron Club or the Judo Club. Napoleon Hill eventually writes a book called Think and Grow Rich, where he brings what masterminds are together. As there is a large boom in self-education versus traditional education, where do you see this going forward? Where do you see the parallels between traditional education versus self-education when people come and work with you?

John Paragon:  14:59

I’m waiting for the entire school system to change. I don’t think the old-fashioned methods of learning work too much anymore. Eventually, one of my big goals is to offer an alternative path to education for young people.  Teach them some of the things you probably should know in the real world and don’t learn at school. The direction we’re heading now with education is changing drastically. People have realized there’s we can live in the information age now. There’s a lot of information out there, way more than we can comprehend. People want to improve their situation. People want to learn, want to better themselves, and know the information out there. They are looking for various strategies to receive that information. Many people are looking for various strategies to deliver that information as well.

The way we learn now is changing dramatically. I’m not a fan of the old-school textbook style. There’s that scene where by the time you’ve learned something at school through a textbook or the time you finish school, what you’ve learned is no longer relevant. Because the time it takes to get into the textbook, that strategy has already passed. You have to keep up to date with the modern age.

The Mastermind Effect:  16:15

The stuff you’re throwing out there is what I continue to talk about and believe in. The type of people I continue to surround myself with are thinkers like that. It’s not that you think outside the box; you just don’t live in a world where there is a box around you.  You see a problem, and you want to solve it. You want to make a change, want to have it for purpose, and help other people move that needle based on what you’re paying to learn and then what they’re paying to learn. The trickle effect right there. The pebble in the pond effect and can’t even be measured.

Typically, when someone invests in their future, they have a better than a vague idea of what they’re going to get. They have an expectation of what the outcome is going to be. What should someone expect when they enter your reality and work with you?

John Paragon:  17:08

The ultimate goal is to take from wherever they are at the moment. We give 30 days to put together a plan that takes their business to a higher profit level. A large portion of my clients is in businesses struggling when they came to me, not currently. They’re struggling with that business, and they know there is potential to take it to the next level. Other clients already have a reasonable income, are comfortable, and want to take it to the next and achieve more. I do encourage them. As they achieve more, they now have the opportunity to be able to give more to other people, whether giving back to their families, giving back to charities, or giving back to all the people by teaching them what they know. I’m a huge fan of this.



The Mastermind Effect:  17:58

It’s beautiful. Because one of the things you said right there was, “I take them from where they’re currently at and where do they want to go.” We call that the bridge. You can’t know where you are supposed to go unless you know where you’re currently.


John Paragon:  18:30

Part of my coaching and as part of the “done with you,” the first step they go through, apart from that we have a one-hour consultation initially, you go through some basic modules you can get done within the space of a couple of hours. There are two questions I asked.  The first question is, “Where are you at now with your business?” And the next question is, “Where do you want to be?” Once we have these two, we have a good idea. And then, my job is to find the shortest, most efficient route to get to that end goal. I also asked them if there’s one thing I can help them with over the next 30 days; what would that be? It helps them open their minds a little bit to their biggest issue and their biggest struggle. I can figure this out for them. But it takes me a lot more time to analyze them: their business, their stats, and their income.  I can find flaws in their business plan. I can find potential solutions to take it to the next level. But if they can tell me what they think their biggest struggle is, that gives me something to work with from the offset.

Those two questions are huge in understanding where someone’s at and understand where they want to go to help take that direction.

The Mastermind Effect:  19:45

 All the people I’ve been fortunate to surround myself with over the last two years speak that same language. I want the listeners to know what John is saying right here, some of the most brilliant minds out there saying right now, and how he’s explaining how he works with new and how he does what he does. He resonates the same way that these other people believe how coaching and masterminds need to be done and as effective when it comes to working with him,

Talking about the people you’re working with, I feel that people have a way of surprising us and what they can accomplish, whether it’s their drive, willingness to learn, or whatever that is. Give us a success story of someone that’s been through your program or coaching platform and the outcome because they worked with you.

John Paragon:  20:37

It was back in August when we ran a five-day free challenge. Over the five days, I give the challenges, the basics of what I take them through. It was one task each day over the space of five days. There were 67 people in that group. By the end of the five days, the vast majority of them have either started their own business or had the kind of creative energy and inspiration to understand what they need to do next. They either started, or they have an idea about where to start. For something that was a free challenge, for me, that gave me so much pride and pleasure to know that I can give away free value that didn’t take much time of mine at all and to be able to give them these tasks each day. It took a bit of time to set up this challenge, but it was incredibly easy throughout the week. It was a whole lot of fun for them to go away and start their businesses. It was tremendous.

Two of the guys go go-karting with me on occasion. We talk about business stuff, but for the most part, when I’m racing, I keep the business world separate. They join the challenge. One of them went and started his own business. He’s now a vehicle performance specialist. He helps people improve the performance of their vehicles and improve the economy of their vehicles. He likes to make cars go faster, that’s kind of very area he enjoys. Another one of the guys who joined the challenge started a dropshipping store. It’s for selling helmets, suits, or boots. That’s something he can invest minimal time in each week or each month, and he gets a nice little income from it.

There were tons of people and tons of stories like this. A good few of the people reached out to me for one-to-one coaching, which we did. These trophies are from some of my clients that achieve their first 100k from what they learned from me. To teach someone in August to go through a free challenge, which then led to him asking for more one-to-one coaching to then go and make his first 100k, which is three times as much as his nine to five job for about a year, gives me so much pride. It’s validation that what I do works.  It gives me the inspiration to continue doing what I do. I enjoy it anyway. It’s just a nice little bonus that other people are winning from it.

The Mastermind Effect:  23:17

You help them take their passion and their why and transform and take the steps you learned. Now, they’re either able to get out of their nine to five jobs and do something. I bet they got more time of their life back. I love that you sat there because we lead with the gift mentality on the mastermind effect podcast, with The Success Finder and my other companies. They’re going to give back more, whether it’s charitable time, family, and community. It’s important to have that for-purpose mentality.

John Paragon:  23:52

One of the biggest things people appreciate once they’ve put something successful together is the peace of mind that they have the security and whatever they are doing is working, and they’re moving forward. That gives tremendous peace of mind. It makes it easier to sleep, and you have so much energy throughout the day. It gives you the motivation to go and do bigger things. That was a huge deal for me, and I think it has been for my clients, too. A few people have approached me and told me that having that extra peace of mind has been huge for them.

[24:40 – 34:49] Creating Success

The Mastermind Effect:  24:38

We just talked about some successes. They’re amazing, beautiful successes—financial, personal, rewarding, and give back mentality. There’s a lot of things that it takes to be successful, and we talk about that on the solo shows—the pillars of success. You’ve got to be willing to have mentorship coaching, experimentation, partnership, willingness to fail, and willingness to succeed. You have to define success. The problem is that sometimes we don’t define success because now we’ve defined failure. What do you feel is a key pillar when it comes to being successful?

John Paragon:  26:07

The key ingredient to being successful is being open to learning, understanding that you’re going to make mistakes. There are going to be difficulties along the way. The mistakes are going to happen; embrace them and learn from them. I had this conversation with my boy yesterday, and he got himself in a little bit of trouble. I explained it’s okay to make mistakes, and these are your best opportunities to learn from them and use them going forward. You don’t make the same mistake. Each day, you are a better person, more successful, and more efficient. Embrace the things that will happen in the business, good or bad. That’s the only way to achieve success.

We’ve discussed the coaching options is a huge part. I’ve tried to think of every person I know who has the results I want to achieve or has hired coaches in the past or is working reasonably high. All of them have their own coaches. They have various coaches. All of the elite people or the top 1%  in the world that have achieved what we would measure as being successful didn’t get to that level just on their own, they have hired coaches, and along the way, they have achieved success by hiring people that know the most efficient way to get to that level. For example, Serena Williams, the tennis player, got her own fitness coaches, a health coach, got diet coaches, probably got her own mindset coaches, and may have her own relationship coaches. She has coaches to guide her and help her get the results she aims for.

You cannot reach the highest levels without guidance from other people and are surrounded by people with the same mindset that even if it’s just the bounce ideas around. Being around those people consistently, your brain works in a completely different way. I mean, if I go to a mastermind, compared to when I go camping or when I’m out with family for a family meal, my brain is working completely different in each of those three scenarios. As soon as I get to a mastermind, my brain is working on a higher level; people are talking about the things that I am passionate about and that I am interested in.  I come up with so many ideas. It gives so much energy and makes things so much clearer to move forward and achieve what you may deem as successful.

The Mastermind Effect:  28:31

It’s what you deem is successful. One person could look at it one way, and the other person could look at success completely differently.

When someone works with you and goes through your program and goes through your challenges, how do you keep transferring the risk to them? How do you show them that you’re not transferring risk to say, “Hey, I haven’t done this, but here you go, you go try it”?

John Paragon:  29:16

Every single client I’ve got when it comes to business, there are the fundamentals of running a business, which pretty much apply to most businesses. Some of my clients have a traditional offline business, and I help them find ways we take online, so I teach them things that I have done myself in the past and that I still do every day now. It gives them that extra confidence when they see me being transparent, and they can see I am teaching them things that I already know. I’ll give them examples of it throughout the course. My coach does the same when I’m learning something from my coach.

The Mastermind Effect:  30:13

As we’re getting closer to the end here, just a few more questions. I think there’s always new ideas brewing when there are times of prosperity. When the world is doing great, people can win. But I think ingenuity and creativity come out of times when we feel the squeeze. We’re almost going on a year of the world feeling some form of a squeeze. What are you working on right now that’s going to take place over the next 12 months?

John Paragon:  30:41

The one thing that excites me the most is to kind of step into your shoes and start my podcast, which I’m hoping to do very, very soon. I’m currently refining the minor details of it before I get started. I’ve already got a nice little lineup of guests on the show, which I’m looking forward to. Three in some other side courses specific to particular niches, which I can’t share the details on at this point.  I do want to help specific industries with very specific coaching models. These are pretty much the two things that I’m excited about business-wise. For the day to day life, I’m hoping to get out of the house, which will be fantastic considering the current world situation. I’m grateful for just leaving the house these days.

The Mastermind Effect:  31:34

But we are looking forward to seeing what these courses and what you’re creating. Then, let us know when the podcast the name of it when it’s going to drop. That way, we can give it a listen and support it.

Finally, what is a tip, a tactic, or an actionable item that if anyone listening today implements that over the next 30, 60, or 90 days, they can see a real impact on their personal or business life?

John Paragon:  32:11

For most people, they are offering some sort of product or service. Now I refer to either of these as a solution because every product or service we offer has to solve some of these problems. For example, I want to learn how to spin a basketball on my finger. It’s not a huge problem, but it’s a problem I have; I’m going to go on Google how to spin a basketball on my finger, somebody will offer a service providing the solution for that problem. If you figure out what your specific solution is, then figure out who is the perfect person who needs that specific solution, figures out where they are, and offer that solution. For example, if I wanted to offer a solution in helping people spin a basketball on their finger, I would find where these types of people are and where they would hang out online.

With the solutions that I offer,  I spent a lot of time helping “9 to 5” people discover an alternative path to start their first business and a business related to their passions, interests, hobbies, and talents. I have to find out where these types of people are online and offline. That makes it incredibly easy to find them and pitch my ideas. But more importantly, those people come to me. If you spend all of your time chasing the money and chasing clients, it can become frustrating. I’ve done that in the past, and I don’t do that anymore. I teach my clients not to do that. Figure out what your solution is, figure out who needs that solution now, decide where they are, and then find them.

The Mastermind Effect:  33:50

They’ll come to you because what you’re offering is solving a problem. You’re passionate about it, you have steps behind it, and you want to help them genuinely. John, I’ve learned so much today. And this is going to be a long relationship that I hope that we continue. Going on down the road to where I get to learn more about you, what you’re doing, and the people you’re helping. We’ve got the founder of 30 Days to Profit, John Paragon. Thank you so much for joining us today.

John Paragon:  34:20

Thanks very much, Brandon. It’s been a whole lot of fun.

Tweetable Quotes:

“If you don’t know where you’re going, it’s incredibly hard to reach our destination. You can’t just drive to the end of the street, close your eyes and drive in a direction. You’re never gonna get to the place you want to go.” – John Paragon

“There’s going to be some pain, and pain is going to be your greatest teacher. As long as you are open to learning from it, there’s always something you can take away from every situation.” – John Paragon

“With everything that happens, there’s always something to take away from it, good or bad.” – John Paragon

Resources Mentioned:

Connect with John on Linkedin. Visit https://www.paragon30.com/ and https://www.paragonhustle.com/

Be one of the early adopters of The Success Finder! Download it from the App Store or Google Play Store.

You can connect with me, Brandon Straza, on LinkedIn, Instagram, or send me an email at brandon@thesuccessfinder.com. I’d love to get in touch and talk more about personal development and how you can live past beyond your limits.

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