126: Lisa Kipps-Brown | Finding the Right Mentors to Achieve Business Growth

Lisa Kipps-Brown is a Business Reimagineer with over 25 years of internet business experience and 30 years of entrepreneurial experience. She helps entrepreneurs identify and develop marketing opportunities and long-term strategic partnerships that increase business value and marketability. Lisa is the President of Glerin Business Resources, a web and marketing strategy firm founded in 1996. She is also the author of Boomer Cashout and Disrupt Your Now.

Today’s episode starts with how she has been helping her clients shake off the broken sponsorship mentality. Lisa also explains why masterminds help you grow your network and change how you can accomplish things. She also talks about why the little things actually don’t matter. Check it out!

The Mastermind Effect:  01:48

Can you give us a 10,000-foot view of how awesome your connections were with what you do for a living,  in your coaching, and your mastermind? Give us a 30,000-foot view in 60 seconds of what you just connected with.

Lisa Kipps-Brown:  02:01

For two years, I’ve been working with this NASCAR team. We’re trying to disrupt the sponsorship model, and we’re doing it to promote free services to prevent veteran suicide. And I just got out of a Clubhouse room that was for speed networking. There were literally only four people in the room because it was the very beginning. I said what I did right after that a guy came in, that would be a perfect fit, but he didn’t have the money. But then the guy hosting the room is like, “No, no, no.” He saw the big picture as I do. He’s like this guy that has the matching opportunity that we have on. He’s like, “Oh, no, this is what you do.” Then this other man hopped in, and he said, “I’m going to help you all put this all together. I used to do it for a living, but I help people now that to help them.”

My mind is blown. This literally happened with four people in the room. By the time I got off, there were six. It was just crazy. They even have people that they said might even just pay for it upfront. So the guy doesn’t even have to get his matching card.

Lisa Kipps-Brown Learning Journey and Masterminds


The Mastermind Effect:  04:08

Let’s dive into what we’re here for today. Our ability to access people and learn had drastically changed in the last 5 to 10 years. When you and I were younger, it was textbooks, teachers, friends, family, co-workers, or just the people around us, but that’s a sliver of what’s possible. How has your learning changed from your early years versus today?


Lisa Kipps-Brown:  04:35

Today, we can learn literally in seconds or minutes, which took us weeks to learn before I started my business. It was 1996, and we didn’t even have Google then. It was a web and marketing strategy. I had never developed a web database. I needed to develop a shopping cart and everything for what I was doing for my own business. I had to go to the bookstores and dig deep and try to find books, and they usually didn’t even have them. It would take me forever to figure them out.

Now, you can go online, go to a forum, find sample code, or preferably use open source code or existing platforms. It’s just crazy how fast we can learn now and how fast we can connect.

The Mastermind Effect:  05:22

It really is. It can be unbelievably overwhelming how do you navigate through what is out there, so you can cut out the noise to bring in the signal and figure out how you can bridge that gap.

As we have more ways to take in information than ever before, as I said, it’s kind of confusing. Some people look for a mentor, mastermind, coach, accountability partner, online courses, and lots of ways to learn. Who are you currently learning from, and more importantly, how did you connect with them?

Lisa Kipps-Brown:  05:57

My mentor is Steve Sims, the real-life Wizard of Oz. He is the author of Bluefishing: The Art Of Making Things Happen. He works with people like Elon Musk and Richard Branson. I first heard him right after his book came out a little bit over three years ago. I heard him on a podcast right after that, and I immediately connected with him. I felt like I’ve known him forever, and his story just really resonated with me. I ended up reading the book several times. I started following him. That November, he came out and said that he was going to start having a monthly coaching opportunity. So I immediately signed up, and he’s been my mentor ever since. It’s a little over two years now.

The Mastermind Effect:  06:50

Let me ask you because we touch on a point there, mentor and coach, and really where that falls. Do you look at Steve more as a mentor or a coach? There’s no right or wrong answer. What’s the difference between a coach and a mentor? And how do that parallels?

Lisa Kipps-Brown:  07:08

Sometimes I say interchangeably. He’s my mentor. Sometimes I say, he’s my coach. But I look at a coach as somebody who’s kind of a little bit more hands-on and whole accountability, and not quite as big picture. With Steve, I work on big picture stuff. We have some accountability things, and he checks in with me. He isn’t like every week, “Did you do this? Did you do that?” kind of thing. It’s a more high-level thinking strategy and just the big picture. I don’t know if that’s how he works with most of his clients, but that’s what works with me because of the way I think,


The Mastermind Effect:  07:48

That makes sense. You need the right person to put in the right place in the right order to get the results you’re looking for.

Lisa Kipps-Brown:  07:56

If you think about coaching like a football team, you have a head coach, the defense coach, the offense coach, the quarterbacks’ coach, and all those coaches. So each of those coaches is helping with something very specific. You might need a more hands-on coach with you, or you might need somebody bigger or higher level.  What is great is having somebody who can do both, especially if you’re an entrepreneur or solopreneurs and don’t have a ton of resources or time to work with many different people. If you can have somebody that can shift between those roles, that’s ideal.

The Mastermind Effect:  08:38

I completely agree with you. He’s been a huge game-changer just for me personally and business-wise. We are talking about education and people getting stuck and how we put the right people in the right place. I feel sometimes it’s tough to execute what’s sitting up here, where it’s like we’re in the weeds, we can’t see through the forest. We’re still going through a pandemic. But to me, I think it’s causing a reset in how we can accomplish things. How has masterminds or coaching helps you when you’re looking to reset and accomplish something where you’re currently stuck?

Lisa Kipps-Brown:  09:13

It helps me immensely. You all probably have heard the saying that entrepreneurship is a very lonely place. People don’t get it if they haven’t been there or if they’re not an entrepreneur. You can be in a room full of people, but if they cannot think like you, you just have everything stuck up in your head, and they don’t get it, so they can’t help you even if they want to. When you can feel around people who think like you are thinking, complementary ways, then if you have an idea, you can throw it out, and they can give you feedback. The ideas are like ping pong, going back and forth, and inevitably, you end up with bigger, better ideas or things that you would never have even thought of if it were just you sitting in the room.

The other thing is, it’s just really frustrating the NASCAR team that I’ve been working on for the past two years. What we’re doing is disrupting the whole sponsorship model once we can crack this nut that we’ve been working on, but most people just don’t get it. They look at the little picture; they don’t look at the big picture on a 15-year plan that we have. It gets so frustrating, regardless of what you’re working on. It gets so frustrating if you can’t be talking with people who can grasp what you’re trying to do. That doesn’t mean that what you’re trying to do is right. We could have been working on it for two years, and it could be really stupid and never work.  We needed somebody to tell us that, but we knew it could work in our heart, and everybody we talked with that we trusted felt the same way. And but today, getting in that room in the Clubhouse and to high-minded people just getting it and all of a sudden that ideas bouncing back and forth that gave me like two years worth of energy back in my soul.  I feel like replenished after all of this work.



The Mastermind Effect:  11:10

I was on a call with an amazing individual earlier today. One of the things that we talked about is when you are in a room, leave that room and exert all this energy. Do you still have the energy, or is it depleted? Then how do you release that energy? To me, I still have the energy, and then I tried to release it with the people who weren’t there. How do you release it? So they understand why this is important, as opposed to just blurting out a bunch of names and things that you think are awesome.

Lisa Kipps-Brown:  11:43

I know. That’s hard because I talk a lot, and I talk fast. I’m like you when I leave, and I’m very energized. I’m an extroverted introvert. So usually, talking to people kind of takes my energy away. But in a scenario like that, or we’re talking with is somebody that I feel like I can engage with, it does energize me, and I try to lit up. I try to remember certain key points that I can pull out for myself over the next few days and weeks to keep myself going. Because obviously, I’m going to be back working with the same kind of people before, try to drip that out.

It’s really hard for somebody like me to simplify my thoughts about things like this. I have to take a step back, and I have to write things down. Then I have just to pick out the very big pieces that I think somebody else can grasp. Because otherwise, it overwhelms them. I’ve got all these moving pieces, and they’re flying all around, and I can see them all, but they can’t. What works for me is writing down all my thoughts but then picking out the big picture thoughts that I think will make sense to somebody else who is more normal than me.

The Mastermind Effect:  13:07

It’s finding that anchor point. When you can find that anchor point and sit and be like, “Okay, here’s where I can bring everything back to as a reference to help that explain why this is important.” It’s any of my teams on any of the businesses I have. I’m like, “Listen, none of these ideas are mine. I took what someone else said, referenced it in how it pertains to what we’re doing, and just rearrange that Rubik’s cube.” There’s no original idea. It’s just taking different things and finding out how you can make them beneficial to you and the people around you.

Lisa Kipps-Brown:  13:38

Right. Mixing it up, taking what other people are doing, and figuring out ways to use, apply it better, and do it better. Nothing is totally original. It’s just repositioning stuff and massaging it. I also use a lot of analogies in my communication with people. With an analogy, I can take a more complex thought and put it into a scenario that they’re familiar with. It might have nothing to do with what we’re doing, but I can explain it to them in a way that kind of makes sense.


Lisa and Her Experience with Self-Education


The Mastermind Effect:  14:16

Masterminds have been around for a long time. Probably the first mastermind was the apostles. Then,  Benjamin Franklin created something called the Leather Apron Club or the Judo Club. Then Napoleon Hill writes a book, and it kind of really brings it to the forefront like what a mastermind is. As there’s been this huge boom of self-education over the last 10 to 15 years, where do you see the parallels going between self-education versus standardized education?

Lisa Kipps-Brown:  14:54

Standardized education is a topic I could talk about all day. It is failing everybody who isn’t in the middle of the bell curve. I believe that the majority of it is going in the big picture. Self-education and standardized education will be more targeted at small things. And then, when the individual wants to target even further, they’ll go back to self-education.

Most entrepreneurs tend to be loners, and we are the type “I can do it.” For years, it was just me. Then even when I had employees, it was still really just me. I worked with them, but I didn’t have someone to engage and talk with about ideas. It wasn’t until I started partnering up with other people and talking with other people. Even if it wasn’t a formal mastermind but just getting together and throwing out ideas, that’s when the light came on for me how valuable an actual mastermind is.

So anybody out there, if you’re thinking, “I don’t need a mastermind, I don’t need a coach, I got it all together,” I’m here to tell you that you’re wrong. No matter how successful you are, other people can help draw things out of you that you can’t draw out on your own. As I said earlier, you can’t end up coming up with ideas that you would never have thought, if you didn’t have input from these other people.

The Mastermind Effect:  16:32

Absolutely. If you’re going to invest in anything better than the stock market or the housing market, the one investment you can control is yourself. You can control the ROI and yourself; you can’t control those other things. I’m not saying you don’t buy a house or don’t invest in the market but look at investing in yourself and what the win-win can be by doing that. That’s one of the reasons why we’re building the Success Finder. We’re helping people pave the way to make sure that they’re working with the right coaches, the right masterminds, and working with the result leaders, not the thought leaders. People that are getting the results invest in them and invest in yourself in return.  You can’t see the ROI yet, but it’s there.

Lisa Kipps-Brown:  17:29

You are right, and statistically, the average entrepreneur has 98% of their net worth in their business, but only a third of businesses usually sell. That means we have to think more strategically about our businesses. Quit working “in” them. Work on them more so that we are building something of value and that we can sell to somebody else at some point in time. Because that way, you have spent decades investing in yourself and investing in your business, so you might as well make it something that the value is something that you can sell instead of just having to close it down like most businesses.

The Mastermind Effect:  18:14

I don’t mean this in a disrespectful way to anyone that’s listening to this. If you are the business, then you work for your business, and you don’t have anything to sell eventually because you are the business.



Lisa Kipps-Brown:  18:26

I tell my clients that nobody wants to buy a job. If your business cannot run without you, that is a job. Why would anybody want to buy it? Because if they’re going to buy it, they might as well go start it themselves. Most people who do want to buy business want to buy something that if they want to work in it, they can, but they don’t have to.

I believe if you have the wrong coach, it’s worse than having no coach. You can blow so much money and so much time, and it’s so damaging to your psyche as well because you start feeling like a loser. I’ve known people that finally give up, and they’re like, “I’m just going to go back and get a job.” It breaks my heart because I know that if they could access the right resources, they wouldn’t be in that position. But too many of us look at spending that money as an expense, and I can’t afford that. If you take a step back, I prefer to think of it as “I can’t afford not to do that.” Statistically, if it’s 98% of my net worth, or I’ve got to invest in it, and  I just like to continue to learn, I can’t stand being stagnant. When you’re working with a coach or if you’re part of a mastermind, you’re going to be challenged, and you’re always going to keep learning and growing.

The Mastermind Effect:  20:00

The right coach and the right mastermind will challenge you. They’ll be a cheerleader for you, but they’re going to challenge you to make sure that you’re doing it for the right “why.”

Typically, when someone invests in their future, they have a better than a vague idea of what the outcome can be. They’ve got some form of expectation of what can happen. What should people expect when they start working with Lisa and entering your reality?

Lisa Kipps-Brown:  20:31

First of all, it depends on what their goal is, and how we end up working together. I start with a one-hour brainstorm, and that’s for the person who just kind of feels stuck and not sure what they want to do or need to do. I’ll do a one-hour brainstorm with them to knock thoughts loose and make them start thinking in ways they haven’t before. Then it goes up to monthly coaching. People can do monthly coaching with me or a long-term retainer where I’m basically their chief web officer.

I help people think big picture with their business and think of what they could be doing differently that might make them happier in their business, whether working less, making more money, creating new revenue streams, or expanding without hiring people. I’ll help them come up with ideas for disrupting their business so that their life can be better. We all started our business because we want to be your own boss.

I help people take a step back, assess what they’re happy with, what they’re unhappy with, and what their dreams are. If they could do anything they dreamed up, what would it be? What would their lifestyle be like now? What would it be like in a year? What would it be like when they retire?

I can’t imagine myself ever retiring, so I also work with a lot of clients to help them plan that transition that even if they do sell their business, how can they stay active and help other people keep benefiting from their experience and knowledge and help themselves not stagnate after they retire?

The Mastermind Effect:  22:22

That’s interesting. Conversations that I had earlier today are like when you accomplish this, or you’ve shortened your bridge, and you’ve gotten to where you want to go, are you done? The answer is simply no. It’s just going to be an imperfect thing of helping other people.

Lisa Kipps-Brown:  22:41

I’m not sure if I answered your question well, but then like I said, it depends on the person. It can be anything from tactical advice and actionable steps that I want them to take to big-picture strategy and even concepts for the product.

The Mastermind Effect:  22:57

You answer the question how it’s answered. There’s no right or wrong. I feel that people have a way of surprising us. The people you work with have a way of surprising us, whether it’s the grit, the grind, or the willingness to learn. Has anyone been through your coaching or any of your programs that, because of that, the outcome was just unbelievably successful, and they were just super surprised? So give us some really cool success story of someone that’s worked with you.

Lisa Kipps-Brown:  23:29

My favorite one is an old one. This was literally in the late 90s. At that point, a woman that I knew, her husband, had died of cancer, and she was going bankrupt. They didn’t have good life insurance, and they didn’t have good medical insurance. She had an information-based business. It was a technical publication. It had gone out of print, and she couldn’t afford to get it taken back to print. So I worked with her and helped her redevelop that, take it from a print product, and turn it into a digital product. It was a subscription-based product. This was in ’97, and the only subscription-based businesses that I even know of back then would have been like AOL and kind of like Internet service providers. They weren’t really product services then, so I developed that for her. Then we took it, developing it into a search platform that people could use to search products within that entire industry.

Long story short, somebody came out of the blue and wanted to buy. It wasn’t even up for sale, and they bought it right before the .com bubble burst. Then the bubble burst, they came back and gave it back to her because they couldn’t get funding. She literally had this business that she was just going to shut down, and we were able to turn it into something that was a different product but delivered the same benefit.  Anyway, that’s why I love that it shows you that things can turn and you don’t even know what might happen.

The Mastermind Effect:  25:22

To anyone listening, realize that saying, “Well, that doesn’t apply today. It’s just not true.” Having ingenuity and having creativity like that back then bleeds through today. It’s not that you think differently, or I think differently. We just choose to do things the way that other people might sit there and say it differently. Back then, that was obviously trailblazing and something new. In ’97, that was not the norm.



Lisa Kipps-Brown:  25:50

The only thing that’s different now is the tools and access. That’s why that’s my favorite one because it’s personal. I was able to help somebody that I knew, and she had a kid that was getting ready to go to college and a kid that was still in high school. It meant a lot to me.

The Mastermind Effect:  26:15

You change the trajectory of what was going to happen with that family.

The Mastermind Effect:  26:54

We’ve got just a few more questions as we’re getting ready to come to an end here. On our solo shows, we talk about success, the pillars of success, and what it takes to be successful. A few things are experimentation, partnerships, mentorship, coaching, and willingness to fail. On the flip side, willingness to define success, because when you define success, in essence, you define failure. What do you think is a key attribute when it comes to being successful?

What it Takes to Be Successful


Lisa Kipps-Brown:  27:29

Knowing yourself, because if you do not know yourself, you cannot know what you want. When I say know yourself, it is not just talking about what you like, what you don’t like, and what you’re good at, and what you’re not good at, but the underlying reasons why you like it or don’t like it, and good at it or not good at.

For example, my education is in accounting. I just picked the major because I was good at math, then I got out in the real world. I was like, “I hate this.” And then, I discovered web design and dropped my CPA license, and I was in heaven. What I didn’t understand when I was younger, I thought I was lazy because I would procrastinate. I didn’t understand that repetitive tasks just suck my soul out.  So it took me getting older and understanding myself to understand how my brain works, how I think, the kind of work that fulfills me and makes me feel better, the kind of work that takes away from me feeling better, and the kinds of clients that I like to work with and don’t like to work with.  I feel like knowing yourself really well, what your goals are and your dreams, and what in just your wholly inside, but also being willing to fire clients. That will kill you faster than anything.

The Mastermind Effect:  28:51

I’m trying to think how to put it into words. When you can officially sit there and fire someone that you work with, it’s not from taking it from a malicious standpoint, but knowing that you’re able to do that because the money is not worth the pain that comes along with it, and you’re able to survive still; it’s a refreshing feeling, per se,

Lisa Kipps-Brown:  29:15

It is. I did this for a long time. It’s like we’re just worried about cash flow and cash flow. So you take any work, whether you like the people or not, whether it’s work that you should be doing. Not that you won’t do it good. Even if it was work that we shouldn’t have been doing, we always did it great. But it was a waste of our time. We could have been making a lot more money doing something different and happier working with different people.

When I finally allowed myself to take a step back and look big picture instead of nose to the grindstone, I was able to really understand the kinds of people we should be working with and when it’s a bad idea to work with somebody. Still, it’s not just for you. If they’re better off working with somebody that they’re a better match for. Because even if you can deliver what they need, if you work in a different way, communicate differently, and think in a different way than they’re able to, they need to be working with somebody that’s a better match for them.

That’s the same thing with coaches and masterminds like we spoke of earlier. Every coach is not right for every student. The coach needs to understand who is good for them to work with. The entrepreneur needs to understand what type of person is a good match for them.

The Mastermind Effect:  30:36

Absolutely. It is knowing both sides and being able to be open and honest.

Lisa Kipps-Brown:  30:47

I tell people all the time that I don’t think that we’re a good match. I do that free call because I want to talk with people if I don’t know them and find out what their goals are and what they are trying to accomplish. And I’ll tell them, “I really don’t think that we’re a good match.” But if I know somebody, I will tell them, and I will gladly refer them. I don’t want anything out of it. I just want them to do better. Most entrepreneurs are like that. Most of us are giving people. If you run across people who aren’t giving, and you feel like all they do is take, you need to get away and find good people.


The Mastermind Effect:  31:40

Those are the marketers. I’m not saying marketing people. I’m talking about the marketers that are pretending to be coaches and hosting.

Lisa Kipps-Brown:  31:42

Exactly. There’s so much noise out there. If you just go out there and Google coach, or even if you ask your friend, they will tell you, or the search engine will tell you what comes to the top of the list. That does not mean that you’re going to get the gold nugget that’s down at the bottom of the pan if you shake it enough, and it can make such a huge difference. You can end up spending less money and getting way more out of it. But even if you spend more money, if you’re getting more out of it, you are so much better off in the long run.

The Mastermind Effect:  32:19

I feel that new ideas are brewing in times of prosperity; it’s easier to win when the world is winning. I think creativity and ingenuity come when we feel the squeeze in the world still feeling the squeeze. There’s a lot of changes happening out there. What are you working on right now that will take place over the next 12 months that excites you?


Lisa Kipps-Brown:  32:44

NASCAR team with what we’re doing to combat veteran suicide. That’s one thing, and then I’m also working on an idea for a platform to help older entrepreneurs. I’m 50 now, and I’m not ashamed to say. People in my age group to help younger entrepreneurs or employees understand each other better and work together better. Because I feel like there’s too much energy and intergenerational bickering back and forth. I told somebody the other day that the younger people need our experience, but we need their fresh eyes. I’m working on the idea for a platform to try to help get those generations working together better.

The Mastermind Effect:  34:02

Are we going to see something here at the end of 2021 or some time with this?

Lisa Kipps-Brown:  34:09

I believe by the end of 2021. I’m still massaging the ideas. I tend to start doing before I should. I’m trying to force myself to slow down, think it through more, bounce more ideas off of people, and think it through

The Mastermind Effect:  34:29

What is a tip, a tactic, or an actual item that if someone listening today implemented this, they would see a real impact on their personal or business life over the next 30, 60, or 90 days?

Lisa Kipps-Brown:  34:41

I’m going to say something this is not related directly to the business, but I heard this in a Clubhouse reading the other day, and it resonated with me. We always go, “Oh, if you’re feeling down, try to think of something positive.” But Glen Morshower in the Clubhouse the other day said that every morning when I wake up, I spend several minutes and start my toes. And I think of what I’m thankful for my toes, and this set another. In other words, all the little things in our life that we take for granted. The funny thing that he said that I really took away is that if I don’t have time to think of anything else, I think about my belly button because if it weren’t for that, I wouldn’t be alive. So I know that probably sounds really weird advice to be giving on a show about the mastermind. Still, my point is, we need to think about the small things in life and why we need to be grateful for them and concentrate on those instead of concentrating on everything that’s going wrong and why.

The Mastermind Effect:  35:41

The note that I wrote down on this one was when you’re feeling down, stare at your toes, and understand why the little things don’t matter. Toes are little.

The Mastermind Effect:  36:06

We have got the Founder of Glerin Business Resources, Lisa Kipps-Brown. Lisa, thank you so much for spending time with us and for what you’ve instilled in the Mastermind Effect today. Thank you.

Tweetable Quotes:

“Personally, I think standardized education is failing everybody who is not in the middle of the bell curve.” – Lisa Kipps-Brown

“If your business cannot run without you, then that is a job.” – Lisa Kipps-Brown

“Every coach is not right for every student.” – Lisa Kipps-Brown

“Younger people need our experience, but we need their fresh eyes.” – Lisa Kipps-Brown

Connect with Lisa Kipps-Brown on Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn or Youtube. You can also check out her website lisakippsbrown.com.

It’s time to Stand Up, Show Up, and Level Up! Download The Success Finder on Apple and 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 move beyond your limits.

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