092: Tiago Buhr | Sustainable Changes and A Sustainable Life Through Purpose

By age 17, Tiago Buhr had Founded his first company, growing from zero to 700k followers in two years. At 19, he sold it and began traveling the world. After five and a half months backpacking, he moved back to his home country, Brazil and after a few business attempts, got clear on his values and started a coaching practice. Tiago is now running Impact Force, an intimate mastermind for fun, generous and team-playing entrepreneurs. With his vast experience in coaching, he helps entrepreneurs who want to create a big impact in the world.
In this episode, Tiago talks about how entrepreneurs can change the future imprint of what’s possible to make sustainable changes. He explains why he works with people that don’t only care about profits but want to build a sustainable life through purpose, and Tiago explains why investing in the right Mastermind has been so critical to his success. Check it out!

[01:54 – 12:34] Tiago Buhr’s Learning Journey and Masterminds


The Mastermind Effect: 01:47

Let’s jump into it. Our ability to learn and access people has changed over the last 5 to 10 years. When you and I were younger, it’s textbooks, teachers, family, friends, our co-workers, and just the people around us. But that’s a sliver of what’s possible. How is your learning changed from your early years versus today? 


Tiago Buhr:  02:12

Previously I would learn mostly from books, courses, or whatever material I could get my hands on. Now, I prefer to learn directly with the people who wrote the books because they can miss out on the nuances like a course or a book. It’s a way that can work. If you look down to each specific case, maybe this approach would work a little better, or maybe this other approach would work a little better. I prefer to work directly with people as mentors, coaches, or masterminds, where I can be with other entrepreneurs.


The Mastermind Effect:  02:58

Yes, I think that’s the thing. When we can see it, touch it, or feel it, it makes it more real, whether it’s the fact that they’re going to hold us accountable. They’re going to be a challenger and not always that cheerleader. When you have that experience, people are more accessible than ever before, especially in 2020. But to reach out and build value, it’s amazing the difference that you can get from reading their book to having that conversation like we have today.


Tiago Buhr:  03:31

I was doing some work around my unique abilities with Kayvon. He made this very interesting distinction. He said it’s better to learn from people who have the knowledge and wisdom.  They not only have the content, but they have the wisdom to see which scenarios, recommendations, or data advice would not work. You can really get that from a book. Don’t get me wrong. I love books. I love reading them, but I think it’s one part of the element.


The Mastermind Effect:  04:03

We’re able to learn from a lot of different people out there. Some people learn from accountability buddies, coaches, masterminds online courses, and many ways to learn. You just mentioned someone that we both know, Dr. Kayvon.  How did you originally connect with him? How did you end up working with him, and what is that outcome been so far?


Tiago Buhr:  04:32

I got to know him in our mastermind and Thursday Night Boardroom. From there, many connections ensue like this one.  Then, we started doing some work around personal strengths, unique ability, genius zone, and all that.


The Mastermind Effect:  04:52

Where do you see your trajectory? We’ll get into the directory of the people that work with you. Where do you see your trajectory because you realize the value of something like a Thursday Night boardroom? For anyone listening previous episode, Jeff Moore and Nick Peterson run it together, and it is a free mastermind.  Before finding stuff like Thursday night boardroom and individuals like Dr. Kayvon, what’s the difference between where you were versus where you’re going? 


Tiago Buhr:  05:27

I would say the size of the ambition because you see other people that are your colleagues achieving pretty relevant stuff, like creating businesses that have a substantial impact and have a real impact in the world. You see that they’re just humans and normal people who have their flaws and have their off days and all of that and are inspired to make an impact for a great cause. It just opens up perspective and the connections you get from a mastermind. I believe that relationships are the best investment you can make. Relationships are the currency of life, and everything good in life comes from relationships. 


I believe that instead of just investing in the stock market, I grab a percentage of my revenue for hiring mentors and coaches, participating in masterminds, going to live events, and even inviting a friend out to dinner in a house to get together. Just two days ago, I had a couple of friends here, and opportunities just arise from that. Especially now, since everything is becoming online, which is tremendously valuable. We wouldn’t be able to have this conversation ten years ago or maybe even five years ago. The internet quality wouldn’t be as good. That also means that people are staying more at home. 


I believe that successful people generally want to serve, and they’re the most generous people. They actively connect you with other people who have other resources, with financing, or with whatever you need to succeed.


The Mastermind Effect:  07:46

Your ROI on yourself and your relationships are better than the stock market and the housing market. Now, I’m involved in both of those, but I can’t control the housing market or the stock market; what I can control are the people I invest in, the amount I invest in myself, and what that return is right there.


It exceeds the relationships and their experiences. The experiences together far exceed anything we could ever look at when we lead with the give mentality, and we have a purpose behind it. Those relationships are a byproduct of those relationships, and money comes from them.  There is an exchange of money amongst people. Money is a byproduct of creating something and solving a problem. That’s okay. It’s that exchange, that ROI, that you want to invest in someone else and in that relationship, whether it’s a dinner or a mentor; it is so critical.


Tiago Buhr:  08:47

If you invest in the stock market or real estate or whatever, the ROI you get mostly is just money. When you invest in relationships, as you said, you get money as a byproduct, but you get so much more. You get friendships like I have many clients that my friends. There was this TED talk on the longest research ever done on human beings’ happiness. The number one factor that determines the happiness of your life was the quality of your relationships. 


Personally, in 2019 I went through a depression period, where only later did I understand that I feel lonely. Then I started to have friends where I get together to play Dungeons and Dragons once a month. I have friends I  invited to dinner, going to capoeira lessons and stuff like that. And that just creates a snowball effect.


The Mastermind Effect:  09:45

I feel that people get stuck and don’t know how to execute what’s in their heads. As we’re still going through a pandemic, I think it’s causing a reset in how we can accomplish things. How have masterminds helps you when you’re looking to reset yourself and get unstuck?


Tiago Buhr:  10:22

In so many ways.  Sometimes, there’s this one small idea that keeps me stuck, and I believe in it for some reason. Then I get into a mastermind, and people say like, “That’s not at all the case. I’ve done it this way. I’ve done it that way.” And you’re like, “Oh, okay.” That just propels your progress. 


The other thing is perspective.  I just ran my own mastermind two weeks ago, and we’re having another meeting tomorrow. It was four entrepreneurs and one in the hot seat who received 30 minutes of undivided attention from other very successful entrepreneurs. It is going to work. If the people right, the values are right, and if you also don’t jump in with suggestions right in front, I believe it’s very valuable. It’s a quote by Albert Einstein that if I had an hour to solve a problem, I would spend 55 minutes defining the problem and five minutes solving the problem. Although 20 minutes for questions, just to get clear on the problem, people will chime in with, but the questions themselves are just mind-opening.


The Mastermind Effect:  11:48

I hadn’t heard Albert Einstein’s comment. There’s someone else that we’ve mentioned; Jeff Moore sits and says, “Be the most interested person in the room as opposed to the most interesting person by listening.” If you listen for that 20 minutes, in the case of what you said, you discuss the problem in those 55 minutes. The last portion is so valuable because of listening to everything before that. You created that room, and then with your mastermind, everyone can be better because of that. Even if they’re not on the hot seat, I bet someone else sitting there said, “I hadn’t seen it this way. I could pluck this and put this in my business.” That’s the power.


Tiago Buhr:  12:31

That’s exactly what happened. 


[12:35 – 29:25] Self-Education and Tiago’s Reality


The Mastermind Effect:  12:35

Masterminds have been around for a long time. Probably the first mastermind was the apostles. Then, Benjamin Franklin creates the Judo Club or the Leather Apron Club. Then eventually, Napoleon Hill writes a book about it and brings it to the forefront. As there’s this huge boom of self-education right now, where do you see the parallels going between self-education versus standardized education?


Tiago Buhr:  13:00

I believe both have their place. I didn’t go to university. I had my first business when I was 17. I learned so much more in running my own stuff and learning what I want to learn rather than sitting in a university and somebody just telling me what I need to know. I don’t believe standardized education is bad. I just believe it needs a revamp. It needs to change and understand people’s preferences and unique abilities. Diving a little bit deeper into that instead of just creating a bunch of average people. I believe there’s a place for both. I’m not on an extreme case that I say  University years or school sucks, don’t go. It worked for me, but it wouldn’t work for other people as well.


The Mastermind Effect:  14:15

Each one has its place, and they’re valuable. I’ve said this before if you want to be a doctor, a nurse, or an engineer, I want you to have that piece of paper. I like how you worded that. It has its purpose but let’s have a revamp, a renaissance, or something that changes how they go about it. I think colleges are trying. They’re a little behind and being as progressive as they could be. 


Tiago Buhr:  14:51

We have a member on the mastermind whose company is in education. They provide these camps for the students to do exactly this: to understand better, what are their personal preferences, go deeper and support them even more, and the things that they enjoy doing. It’s a company that sells its services to the universities because the universities don’t have the agility to transform what they’re doing. That’s why I believe that businesses are our biggest force for change.


The Mastermind Effect:  15:30

Yes, absolutely. People championing that along with people like you and the people we’re fortunate to surround ourselves with, making that change, and helping people get to where they need to go from point A to point B more efficiently. 


Typically, when someone invests in their future like we’ve been talking about the ROI, they have a better than a vague idea of what they’re going to get out of it. They have an expectation of the outcome if they implement what people are working with.  What should people expect when they work with you and enter your reality and when it comes to the Impact Force Mastermind you’re doing right now?


Tiago Buhr:  16:17

I’ll tell you that. There’s a story about investing in mentors that I want to explain out. Can I explain the story first?


The Mastermind Effect:  16:28

Absolutely. This is about you bringing value back. 


Tiago Buhr:  16:34

I understand what you’re doing with the Success Finder. In my last mentor,  I invested $25,000 for two months of coaching. It’s a very high investment. It was very good to make that investment because I felt like I was doing this investment for myself. And I said I am going to create 100% of the money before the work even starts. And I got to around 90% of the money created before the work started because of my changes in attitudes and how it was behaving in the world. That coaching wasn’t good for me because the person really tries to hammer down on what I should be doing in their own way instead of listening to how I wanted to do things.


I believe there’s a difference between having a really good coach and having a really good salesperson. Some people are excellent at selling, but they’re terrible at coaching, and vice versa. You want to find that sweet spot between a good salesperson because you want to learn from a good salesperson. It’s a very valuable skill to learn. You also want to learn from a person that is very good at helping you achieve the result you want. I just want to share that.


The Mastermind Effect:  18:01

I appreciate you sharing that with us. I’ve talked about making the wrong investment, approximately $16,359, amongst a compilation of things. Whether it’s 600, 2500, or 25,000, they’re equally as important depending on where that person is to not derail them for what their future is going to be. There’s a huge distinction right there.  When people work with you, how do you avoid that? What can they expect when working with you? How do you keep from transferring risk from you to the people working with you?


Tiago Buhr:  18:50

I just wrote my vivid vision for the company, which like outlines in the next three years on how and where our company will be.  We have a very simple model in our business. If somebody doesn’t receive the value they want in the community, even after they invested the money, and not happy with it. In that case, we will refund the money plus $1,000 for the time they’ve invested because we want you people to have a good experience, even if they decide to leave us.  We don’t have a 100% success rate in helping people. Our aim is pretty high, but we want people, that even if they leave our community, to say, “Wow, I’ve never been treated so well. I have never been given farewell, so well.” That’s our model because two things happen. We transfer the risk to us, so people are more inclined to sign up and try this. The second thing is we have to follow up on a promise so we’re much clearer about who is the perfect fit client that we can best serve in this community. As a result, we are saying no a lot. We say, “Look, it’s not the right fit. Here’s another mastermind or another resource that I can send you that I think will help even better.” We’re always trying to help even if we’re not the right fit to help that person. We’re always trying to give them some direction to help them better.


The Mastermind Effect:  20:16

Tell us who is fit in the group that’s going through the mastermind right now. What are they working on? What can they expect when they work with you?


Tiago Buhr:  20:34

Our mastermind’s niche is that we have conscious entrepreneurs or run conscious businesses. It’s a business model that typically doesn’t care only about profits but cares about its purpose and planet. They have a business setup called pro-life. It’s a business that supports our environment and society through addressing issues like the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, affordable housing, sanitation, and reforestation. All kinds of businesses that aim to create a more sustainable Earth. It’s very profitable businesses, but its people just want to do more for the world


The Mastermind Effect:  21:33

The impact and the ripple effect that the people you work with and what they can do should not be understated. 


Tiago Buhr:  21:51

Last week, I was watching a new documentary by David Attenborough. He was a narrator from BBC that does all the nature documentaries. He’s now 93 or 94 years old. When he was born, the planet had 2.3 billion inhabitants, and now it is almost 7.8 or something. He said he saw it during his life when wild areas were becoming palm oil plantations or animals becoming much more difficult to find.  He said it’s not about saving the environment; it’s about human survival. For the past five mass extinctions that happened on the planet, all of them proceeded a very high spike in carbon. It’s the same thing we’re witnessing right now. He said it’s not guaranteed that we’re going to have a rosy future, but he chooses to believe that entrepreneurs can make a difference and empower those people.


These are the people that we have. They have businesses that are solid already, and they’re looking to scale their impact. The revenue and profit scale is from 1 million to around 30 million. They’re fun and team players. They know how to do things outside of work as well. They care about creating a positive impact in the world. Yeah, the


The Mastermind Effect:  23:39

The impact and legacy that they leave.  Legacy is not a dirty word. The legacy you can leave can be so impactful and helpful. 


I feel that people have a way of surprising us from time to time. The ones that you work with are your hand-selecting.  Give us that success story of someone that’s worked with you and gone through one of your masterminds?


Tiago Buhr:  24:09

The mastermind is something very new, and I don’t have a success story yet. I kept it a secret for a while because I wanted to prove the model. You’re the first person talking to this in public. On the coaching side, when I had a coaching business, we have many businesses that tripled, quadrupled, even five times their business in a very short period of time. One of them was an engineer. He had this huge product and a storage facility. It was 40,000 square meters or 120,000 square feet storage facility. While he was telling me, he’s going to give him $2 off per square meter because the economy is in a bad place. He just kept talking, and I asked him why he would give him $2 off? He said the country’s financial situation is in a bad place, and the person is not going to pay that. I said, “How can you be sure of that? Would you be willing to, instead of going for $2 per square meter to giving a $1 per square meter discount? The person said yes, and he was super excited about it. It’s a small thing that just added $40,000 for nothing. These small minor tweaks add up to challenge your way of thinking to challenge it and open up possibilities of how things can be done. 


I have another client right now. She’s contacting these big shoe companies to do joint ventures with them. Often, other companies, organizations, or people have the clients you want, and you can just create a mutually beneficial agreement where it will help their clients, the organization, and yourself. I enjoy looking at those angles. That’s also one thing for the mastermind: we have only one person per industry. We are very diverse in the industry.  I believe something that is very common in an industry can be a breakthrough in another. 


People can have a joint venture. For example, we had this person in the education business and another person with a business that served up 20,000 healthy meals to kids in the Toronto area per day. Her business was serving schools and kindergartens. This person needed to get into schools, so why can’t they like do a joint venture where, “Hey, we’re gonna sell you this food, and as a bonus, we’re gonna make this introduction, and you can have a discount.” 


The Mastermind Effect:  27:41

There’s a synergy there. There’s a joint venture. Though industries might be similar, they’re not the same, and plug it in because of what you’ve put together and what they’re willing to talk about. That’s an amazing power.


Tiago Buhr:  28:05

We say relationships are the best investment. There was a study that 70% of job positions are filled by referrals. It doesn’t only apply to jobs. It applies to business opportunities, financing, and everything. If you put people in a room who are playing at a high level, who has a set of values, collaborative, willing not to be the smartest person in the room, open to vulnerability, and sharing what’s working for them and challenges, you’re just going to get stuff that works.


[29:26 – 36:27] Creating Success


The Mastermind Effect:  28:54

Yes, you will. You won’t know what’s coming, but eventually, it will surprise you less and less. When you surround yourself with those kinds of people, those things start to happen more frequently without you even having to ask for it.


When I talked to my coaches or did our solo shows, we talked about success and the pillars for success. Some of those are mentorship, experimentation, partnerships, willingness to fail, and then on the flip side, willingness to succeed. Because if you define success, you, in essence, define failure. That’s why sometimes we don’t define what success is. What do you feel is a key attribute when it comes to being successful?


Tiago Buhr:  29:54

I think success is a little controversial. It is much less about achieving things that you want. It’s much more about cleaning up old judgments and stories that you have inside and things that have been hammered into your head by society or whatever. In entrepreneurship, we get to contribute a lot, giving us a sense of meaning and a sense of purpose.


In my own belief, there is no purpose to life, and there is no meaning. There’s a legacy, but maybe people will remember what you’ve done in 100 years, 200, or even 10,000 years. But in the grand scheme of things, it’s nothing. I believe it’s much more about relaxing and just being more in the moment, like spending a whole afternoon with a friend and drinking some tea.  Nowadays, nobody has time just to go and hang out anymore because everybody’s busy. Everybody’s productive. We see the pressure levels are rising.


The Mastermind Effect:  31:35

What I’m taking from that is to live in the moment and surround yourself with people that make you the happiest. 


Tiago Buhr:  31:41

Slowing down to the speed of life.


The Mastermind Effect:  31:45

Few more questions as we’re winding down here. I feel that there’s always new ideas brewing in times of prosperity. It’s easier to win when the world is winning, but it’s a little more difficult now. Innovation and ingenuity come when we feel the squeeze, and the world is still feeling the squeeze. What are you working on right now that’s going to take place over the next 12 months that excites you?


Tiago Buhr:  32:18

This mastermind is what excites me. I’m starting to hire people because I can’t do it alone. It’s a mission that’s bigger than me.  I just believe in the impact that we can have. It’s going to be a small community, like about 40 people. If we have 40 people running well-sized businesses that have a good impact on the world, I think that’s something that can make a dent. It can do create a lot of well-being for people on the planet.


The Mastermind Effect:  32:52

 The ripple effect from one to forty and can go on and on. 


Tiago Buhr:  33:03

It’s huge. I was born into a good family. We didn’t struggle to have food on the table and got an education.  I have the internet, and I can speak English, although it’s not my native language. I had a good education and had the opportunity to open a business at a young age with parents supporting it. I am in a very lucky position, and many people don’t have that. I am not trying to get like all romantic, and let’s try to save the world; I just want to give people a little more opportunity than what they might have had. 


The Mastermind Effect:  33:54

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


Tiago Buhr:  34:08

Allocate a percentage of your revenue or salary to investing in being in a mastermind. Tons of resources and masterminds are free, like the Thursday Night Boardroom. Some are paid, and it’s very good to pay for that because it ups your commitment. I would say just join one. Research it. Get people that have the same values and that you can learn from.  Just be in a group. It’s one of the things that will propel people the fastest.


The Mastermind Effect:  34:53

A company is being built around this to help people get from A to B a little quicker but more efficiently. To help cut out the noise so you can find the signal to get across that bridge. I will say both of us are part of Thursday Night Boardroom, and it is free. Here’s the thing, I paid to get there indirectly. It was a process to get there, and it wasn’t all of a sudden that I just got to show up and get this. What we have monthly with Thursday Night Boardroom is free; you and I still paid in some form or way till eventually get there, and that’s okay. That is absolutely okay to do that. I love how you brought it back on that tip to invest in yourself. Invest in your relationships. Set aside and allocate a portion of it. 


We’ve got the founder of Impact Force Mastermind, Tiago Buhr. Tiago, thank you so much for spending your time with us and giving us your thought bombs, your wisdom bombs, and everything about it today.

Tweetable Quotes:

“I believe that relationships are the best investment you can make. Relationships are the currency of life, and everything good in life comes from relationships.” – Tiago Buhr

“Success is much more about relaxing and being more in the moment.” – Tiago Buhr

Resources Mentioned:

Connect with Tiago on Facebook (facebook.com/tiago.buhr) or visit https://tiagobuhr.com/en/ 

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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