How do you design your life and create a business that will give you the life you want? RUKE, a creative entrepreneur, artist, video gamer, and creator of World Dominating™ Brand, shares his insights on this with host Penny Zenker. As someone who has built his entire business from what he loves to do, RUKE is a great believer that your need to live a fulfilled life can coexist with the need to run your business successfully. In this episode, he engages in a far-reaching conversation with Penny about a lot of different topics revolving on this theme. Don’t let your life dictate you; design the life you want for yourself and dominate your world. Listen to this podcast and let RUKE help you begin that process.
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Design Your Life And Dominate Your World With RUKE
Ruke, welcome to the show.
I’m so thrilled to be here.
If there’s anybody that is going to teach this audience how to work smarter, it’s you. I think the reason that you’re motivated to work smarter and come up with all these great ideas is you want to play.
If you’re going to do business, you might as well have fun with it. I tell people, “If you’re going to do it, you might as well let’s play.”
You’re working on these world-dominating plans. This whole umbrella of world-dominating strategies. I wanted to talk about that a little bit in the context of how that helps people to work smarter.
First of all, I have a free gift. I’m going to throw it out there. It’s how to craft a world-dominating message. If you go to WorldDominatingPlans.com, because everybody needs a plan. Everybody wants to dominate the world. Here’s a whole idea on how to world dominate. The biggest thing I get accused of is I’ve designed my own life. Dominating your own world, it’s not the earth. It’s not the whole world. It’s giving you permission to step in fully into your power and be you. That’s world-dominating.
Who doesn’t want to design their life? That’s why entrepreneurs become entrepreneurs. Many of them, a segment of them, because they want to design their life.
I was taught that from an early age. I was on a phone call with my mom. When the times are different, she’ll walk in my studio. One time she came, she says, “I’m glad I never limited you. I told you could do anything you want.” I get that from my mom. She’s amazing. She never limited me. I had two voices. My dad was limiting. My mom was like, “No, you can do anything you want.” I listened to my mom and I poured that into my kids. The World Dominating Brand was developed as our education division of my full-service marketing advertising from Blink because I feel we all have that power. I want everybody to step into whatever they want with all their passions. I have one rule for my kids. “Whatever you do, win, lose, or fail, I don’t care how many times you fail. Give it your all. Pour into it everything with all your heart and soul. If you want to change up your career 100 times, I don’t care. Be you. Be what you’re supposed to be.”
Those missteps can be a huge catalyst. We would rather have fewer than more. You said it’s about crafting your message. Why is that important to dominate your world to be smarter?
This is at WorldDominatingPlans.com. You can download this worksheet. The entire lessons on one sheet. It’s nothing hard. That’s also saving time and being dialed in. What’s great about this is I’m a branding guy and people have taught us. I’m sure I fed into it years ago. When someone walks up to you and they go, “What do you do?” It’s pleasantry. No one listens to what you say afterward. You’re bored. You go, “What do you do?” “I do this.” What most people say is something clever and witty that some guru told them to say because it sounds like all sizzly.
What happens, and this is what’s wrong with that, is when you say that to someone, they’re thinking of what you said, but not what you said. They’re thinking, “What the heck does that mean?” There’s nothing for them to respond to. I believe if you have a world-dominating message and I call it my undisputable message, here’s mine. “I help CEOs build companies that honor their family, their passions, and their finances. I do that through sales, branding, and marketing.” That’s it. I’ve gotten checks written to me because of that saying, going, “I have to hire you.” I didn’t tell you what I did. I told you what you want. I told you the results that I get for clients. If you look at the history of my digital footprint, it rings true. If you talk to my clients, it rings true. If you watch the future me, it rings true. Therefore, it’s undisputable. We talk about world-dominating since I know it resonates with me and it’s part of my morals, my ethics, and what I accomplish. I step into it with a different energy than this is what I do tactically.
I think that’s super important. I talk a lot about energy management and it’s as much of how you show up for what you do than what you do. I want people to embrace that in understanding that they have to bring that type of energy to their message and to everything.
Step into the full power of what you do. Most people are lost because they feel they’re identified with the tactical things they do, not the results that they give for people. More importantly, the desires that your audience wants. When you go, “What do you do?” I was part of a networking group and there are only seven people and it took an hour for everybody to introduce themselves. That’s hard to do. You see the monitors, you see the attention span. It was terrible. When I said mine, it was short and sweet. I showed them respect. I became an instant authority because here’s what you want. When someone says, “What do you do?” They say pleasantry, but it’s an opportunity for you to step in. When you say something that’s clear and profound, not clever and witty, then people go, “What do you do?”
Penny, if you listen to when they say, that’s an invitation for you to step in to now have a conversation. That’s huge. When you say it with that clarity, that power, you are the authority. How many of us want to be heard? They go, “Penny, I want the world to hear my message. I want people to take me seriously.” You get that all the time. You’re awesome at branding. When you step into this and go, “This is what I do,” and speak from a result-oriented, a desire-oriented, already right then and there you become the authority and whatever you say rings true because it is true. People now want to listen to you.
Design your own life. Dominate your own world. Click To Tweet People are attracted to results. You said earlier and I want to come back to that because I’m big in understanding the difference between tactics and strategies. A lot of people with all that they’ve got going on, they get trapped in the weeds and in those tactics, that keeps them from connecting to that higher purpose and to their end result. In the end, it keeps them from connecting to their ideal customer.
When they identify with their busy work, which isn’t how. They get caught in that. That’s the tactical part, there’s nothing emotional about that. They can’t step into it and that, and that’s their self-worth, that’s how they identify themselves. That doesn’t resonate with anybody. As soon as you say, “This is what I do for people,” and you don’t frame it that way. You don’t go, “This is what I get for people.” You don’t, because that’s the wrong phrasing. However, if you speak to the results that you get for people, you, good people like us who care and get things done, we can step into energy. It’s not about us anymore. It’s about them. When I tell you that I help CEOs, it’s about the CEOs that build companies. It’s about the company that honors or family or passions of their finances. It’s about them, the clients. You light up. Your whole heart space changes talking about what you do for people, not what you do tactically, and what you get hired for necessarily.
They know where they can go. They can go to WorldDominatingPlans.com to check that out. I want to pick your brain about some other things as well. It may come back around to that. You talked about designing your own life. You’ve done that in different ways. How did you organize yourself so that you could do that? A lot of people are going, “That might work for you,” then there’s a whole list of reasons why they feel that they can’t do that. What worked for you? What did you put in place that helped you to design your own life?
First, I had a mom who encouraged me to be me, which gave me the freedom, that never put limits. I pour that into my kids and so forth.
Their parents in line, does that mean that they didn’t give you a bedtime? Does that mean that they didn’t tell you that you didn’t have to go to school or you didn’t have to eat your vegetables? What did that mean for you in terms of not limit you?
It’s whatever idea they have, you listen to their ideas and you contribute to their ideas and they go, “You can do that. That sounds great. Go get it.” It’s not, “You’ve got to think about this and you’ve got to wait until you’re older.” I treat my kids like they’re adults with respect. They have a voice. I honor their voice. They correct me as much as I correct them, like Victoria. This is why I learned very early. I’m busy young. This was years ago. I get upset because maybe I didn’t take my hat off that day. I have my CEO hat on walking into the house and that’s the wrong energy to leave the office. I go, “No, do this. You go to your room.” I told her, “Don’t correct me in the heat of the moment.” I’ve grown past this, by the way. “If you think I was wrong, come tell me later, not then when dad is upset.” She would and I’d be like, “You’re right. I was wrong.” You get a get out of jail free card. After a while, a pattern happened and I tend to forget that I’m always wrong because she always had a good reason. You’ve got to listen to them. You have to honor their voice that they’re not kids. They’re little people that have ideas, who have reasons. You’ve got to explain why and talk it through and encourage them.
Here’s what I’m getting. I’m going to read between the lines a little bit too. People who are reading, they may also have employees and the relationships between our kids and our employees are not that different. What I heard you say was that your parents and you, as a CEO, you’re listening to the market, you’re listening to your kids. You’re listening first. What I heard you say was that they would encourage you, which I’m going to interpret a little bit there is that as they listen, they probably asked you, like you asked Victoria, “Come back and give me a plan. Why don’t you work that idea through and tell me how you’re going to do that?” I’m interpreting it a little bit, but that’s what I heard they probably encouraged you to flesh out your ideas and not put it down and give you the opportunity to see where those ideas would go. They probably didn’t do it for you.
I have analytical kids, that works for others that are creative, that doesn’t. For the kids specifically, I find reasons to compliment them. I find reasons for what they do and go, “That’s amazing.” I tell them why I appreciate it and why I’m proud of them.
For people reading, this is important for your employees. We’re talking about kids but this could be the same. If you’re building a culture in your organization, you want to be doing this for your employees. I want to point out also, and I’m sure you do this for yourself, Ruke, because we have to do it for ourselves. We have to remind ourselves and compliment ourselves where we can because we’re so critical on ourselves as well. Would you agree with that?
I’ve been blissfully married for many years. I have four daughters, a son-in-law, two moms, five dogs, all girls. There’s not a lot of me that I have two that I focus on, honestly. I have cheerleaders. I will tell you that when I hire people, you have to be a positive cheerleader for the brand and brand ambassadors, the whole nine yards. I expect that out of them. That also means that I have to be that as well. When it comes to the employees, yes, on your agenda should be, “Have I complimented them?” You should be looking for proactively what can I say positive about them and go, “Good job?”
I did it to my son-in-law. I will tell you, the other part of this. They’re my boss. I’ll tell them all the time. When they call me boss, I’m like, “I’m not the boss. We’re together. The company has to serve you as much as you serve the company.” When I make critical decisions, they’re all involved. I do that with my children and the family, even including my young child who has a voice of, “We’re thinking about this. What do you think?” It’s all a discussion. I absolutely do with my team. I don’t call them employees. I say I write the checks, but Paula writes the checks. I own everything, but it’s not that. They’re my team. They all have a voice. They all have expertise. I look for reasons to compliment them. I don’t make any major decisions without their involvement. I remind them, I say, “I want your opinion because this means this for you and for us in the company. I want to make sure we’re in the right direction that you want us to go in.” That is a team conversation.
Isn’t it how you designed the lifestyle and designed your life? I remember you saying that you have a family contract or something like that. You would go and you would discuss with your family, “Here are my goals. Here’s what it means to the family. Here’s what we may have to sacrifice.” Tell us more about that too because that’s part of designing your life.
It is because you have to have buy-in. I can tell you that there are a lot of reasons why I’m successful. One is Jesus Christ. Two is my mom. Three is my wife. Beyond that, it is my family. It’s my kids. I’m proud to say, Victoria, she is 51% owner of one of our companies. She is my boss legally. Justin oversees, my company runs it and it’s ours together. When we have our contracts, it’s going, “This is what I’m looking for. What are you looking for? How is this supposed to serve us? Here’s risks and rewards. Here’s how long we’re going to give it. Here’s how much money we’re going to invest in it.” We’re going to revisit it 90 days to see if we liked it. There are a lot of endeavors and we go, “That wasn’t as fun as we thought. Let’s either change it or let’s forget it.” There are a lot of ideas that we put out there that it’s not worth pursuing anymore.
I’m harping on the design of your life. This wasn’t necessarily the direction that we were 100% going to go in, but I think there are a lot of people who can resonate with that. How do you plan your week? Do you have a worksheet for that too?
Find out what’s nagging you. That is where you have to implement a solution. Click To Tweet A lot of what I love is branding and sales. You and I’ve talked about this fun stuff because you have similar techniques. Mondays are the day that we talk corporately. We go through all the jobs, all of our alliances and partnerships, any corporate decisions. Any corporate conversations, we all have on Mondays. Tuesdays are when we create stuff in production and all that. Wednesdays are when we check in with our clients. Thursdays are a repeat of Tuesdays, and Fridays are our dream days when we work on the business, not in the business. From that perspective, we have an energetic mindset way that we run the company. By the way, we’re an agency. We have milestones. We have systems and processes that we can look at all of our projects, all that stuff. We have that backbone to that. We also scheduled the way we show up differently so we can put the right hat on at the right time.
I think it’s important. There’s wearing the right hat, which I love. It’s the energy that you’re creating in the company. This could be for people who are reading, you might have different departments. Each department might have different sets of themes, but it does help in the culture that everybody knows that you’re focused on that. It creates certain energy moving forward in that direction.
One of the things that you said is how you design your own lifestyle. Part of that, it’s also declaring what you need. That’s what we use a lot. It’s like, “This is what we’re trying to do. To be able to do that, this is what I need.” I look at them and go, “What do you need? What do you need from me?” That crease that conversation because now it comes out of support, not dictated, get that done. I also look at trajectories like, “This is cool. This is where it’s heading. If it keeps going that way, this is the outcome. Is that what we’re looking for? If not, let’s adjust it now.” Look at those trajectories, keep us on point headed towards the future, continually moving forward as well.
What I’m pulling out of that, which I want people to think about is when we’re delegating something. Delegation is working together as a team. You’re handing an assignment down and you ask something important. What do you need? A lot of times I find and I hear people saying that their bosses, they don’t stuff on them. They don’t want to ask any questions and they don’t have all the information they need. What if you added a little bit more structure and a few questions that the person who’s giving the delegation could ask and the person who’s receiving can also ask? That’s going to create much better communication in that to set the milestones when are you going to check in for those trajectory checks and things like that. Anything that you want to add in terms of your delegation process?
Some people go, “Don’t be needy. Don’t talk about your needs and tell you what you want.” I think that creates the wrong conversation. There’s a difference between a teacher and a dictator, and it’s going back to kids. I told this to my kids’ teachers. “There’s a difference between a teacher and a dictator. You’re a dictator because you’re telling my kid, ‘Do it my way.’ A teacher tries to figure out how to get to the student.” You have to do the same thing for your teammates. They have talents. Sometimes you need to shift their roles to their talents. That’s okay. We’ve hired four people and I’ll go, “Here are the three things. I need you to absolutely nail this. I need you to be good at this. This is where I think I can grow you. However, if those priorities change, we can change your role. No big deal. Understand, here are my expectations. Now you tell me where you want to be.” You’ve talked about what is critical, what’s also where we can play, and what’s possible, where it’s going, and where it’s headed.
“Here’s where we are. Here’s where we’re going. Is it going in the right direction?” You’ve got to give that flexibility and we talk about needs. That’s real. That means you have to be open up to talk about what I need. That means they have to be self-reflective. That’s scary for people because sometimes that means, “I need more pay.” Sometimes that means, “I need more time.” Now you have the right conversation though because these things get buried and they get piled on. They build up and then that’s when you have explosions in the company because the boss has dumped many things on top. Now they’re drowning. They are so much drowning, they can’t identify even not their needs. They can’t identify their names anymore.
Some of those organizations that have brought me in and I’m like, “Okay.”
You created a safe space to have those conversations without judgment. You have an organization and here’s what’s cool, you have the permission. You’re the boss you write the checks. It’s your company. Now you have emotionally the permission to express your desires and what you want out of the company. Do you know how many CEOs carry that guilt? “I’m not working as hard as them. I’m cracking the whip, but now I’m going to go on vacation,” and they feel guilty because they’re on vacation. You haven’t expressed the mutually beneficial needs and that’s what an organization does. Here’s also what’s cool. When I say that we help CEOs build companies that honor their family, their passions, their finances, ultimately, it’s not about us. It’s about the clients. It’s what’s best for the client. When you have, “We’re here to serve them. We’re a team.” That is world-dominating.
That’s creating that world-dominating culture. Maybe to shift gears a little bit. What’s the question that you ask yourself that keeps you working smarter? Everybody’s got this central question that they ask themselves. What’s yours?
What’s nagging me?
What does that mean?
We have that conversation too all the time. When you wake up in the morning, the hair stands up, it stresses out. What’s nagging you? That means we’ve got to implement a solution there. That means it’s a pattern that keeps showing up. Let’s create a technology solution or maybe we hire someone for that. I tell them that to my head marketing guy. “What’s nagging you? What do you find yourself repetitively doing that’s bugging you, that’s not sitting right with you?” That means that we have to delegate that because it keeps showing up. That’s how you also expand and scale in the right way too.
We started out with the client, let’s come back around to the client. We’ve talked about a lot of different things. Getting to that message and getting that clarity of point across. Why is it important that we have that clear message? How does that help us to work smarter?
If we met and I didn’t understand this, and you’ve seen this, so I’m going to play the whole other side. “Ruke, what do you do?” “I do websites. I do branding. I built funnels on an illustrator. I have a cool mom. My mom talked my dad into giving me private lessons when I was in the third grade. By the way, they were divorced. I had two different advocates on my side. I went to Ringling School of Art and Design. I haven’t told you the color of the chair I’m sitting on. You’ve got to hear it.” He’s like, “What?” If you can’t say what you do in 1 to 3 sentences, we know you haven’t mastered it. Everybody else knows this. We know you don’t do it. When you’re throwing all these out. You’re saying this, “I want to say this. Maybe you want a website. I’m talking about how we do sales funnels Maybe you need a sales funnel. I don’t want to miss out.” That is a different type of need. That is being needy. Now we know that you don’t do that.
We can't have everybody as clients. We want the right kind of clients. Click To Tweet When I tell you that we do build companies that honor your family, your passions, your finances, I didn’t tell you what I do. I told you what you want. I’m speaking to people’s desires. If that’s a desire you want, if that is the outcome you want, I’m the guy. It’s a whole other level of conversation. I don’t mention websites. I don’t mention sales funnels. I don’t get into those tactical deliveries until later that we agree upon a goal. This is why this is so cool because if you don’t want that, you’re not going to resonate with me perfectly. If you do, you’re going to invest with me. That’s huge.
What I’m hearing you saying is from the start, you’re establishing your credibility and authority because with that 1 or 2 sentences of what it is that you do. You’re establishing a quicker rapport with that because the authority establishes rapport. As well as the fact that you’ve said something that they want and they connect with that. What I also am hearing is that you’re going to weed out the people that aren’t a fit for you, so you don’t need to have, “I do this and I do this,” because, at the end of the day, you have a core essence of what you do. We want to have a smaller pocket of people because then those people are listening and we can then hone down and we’re going to have a shorter sales cycle. Those are results that we’re going to get from creating that simple message.
If you’re networking, you’re going to have to meet someone three times to build any kind of trust. First, they don’t listen to you. Their barriers are up. They’re judging you. They’re questioning you. They’re not listening to you. It’s only that. The second time they’re going, “This person’s coming back again.” Let’s say you go into a networking group. “Maybe I’ll listen to a little bit more. My barrier’s a little bit down.” By the third time they see consistency, their barriers are down. When you use your undisputable message, the barriers go down, their ears go up immediately. You cut your sales cycle right there. I’ve done deals in the first meeting, not three. If you’re telling you have a three-month sales cycle, that goes it down to a month. If it’s three weeks, so on and so forth. That’s what we want.
We can’t have everybody as clients. We want the right kind of clients. I’m also speaking about my morals and ethics. If we agree upon that, we’re going to have an incredible time together. You’re right. It builds rapport. It builds trust and it establishes it right then and there. You also respect them. They feel it. They might not be able to articulate it, but they go, “That was short and sweet. Yes, you do.” That’s all we want. We want to be invited because that’s what’s beautiful. They go, “Tell me more.” Now you’re invited to sell. They invited you to go, “Sell me.”
They invited you for a conversation.
I’m a stickler on this. It’s a sales sheet, not an onboarding sheet. It’s a sales report, not a conversation report. They’re saying, “Sell me, tell me more.” I believe in selling by serving. You’ll give value. A whole other conversation. You serve them. That’s how you earn that business. Now you’ve been invited into it and the barriers aren’t there. You get that conversation. You can talk about solutions and needs and see if it’s a good fit. You can do that right there in the first meeting if you use a world-dominating message or you have to get through the psychological three times meeting minimally.
What’s your definition of productivity and why?
I feel productivity is getting your tasks done without exhausting you. You can buy time. You can buy money. Those aren’t the most precious commodities. That’s another conversation. What you can’t buy is mind share. We can only process and think of many things at once. At the end of the day when you say what’s nagging you, that’s getting rid of those little things that you’re thinking about so that you can have your mind open and you can do whatever without thinking. You can do it with full-on energy with all your passion and you’re accomplishing your goals. That’s productivity for me. There are many people that work hard, but at the end of the day, they can’t think of another single thing. That’s frying you and you’re going to crash.
Thank you for being here. We’ve covered a lot of different topics. It’s all about creating. I want to bring it back though. Even though we didn’t define what’s upfront, I do think that’s the theme of this show. It’s designing your own life. All of those are aspects of designing your life and creating the business that’s going to give you the life that you want.
You can have the life you want. You can’t let it dictate you. You can’t take it. The way you get what you want out of life is by giving those around you what they want and need too. Together, you can literally exist with those goals. That’s what works.
Where can they find your worksheet again?
Thanks for being here, Ruke.
I love being here. Thank you for having me.
Thank you all for being here. I hope that you’re going to take those first steps and actions through the notes that you’re taking and going to that site, WorldDominatingPlans.com so that you can start with your world-dominating message. Think about how it is that you want to design your life so that you can work smarter and create what you want for your own life and in doing so, also serve others. I’ll see you in the next episode.
About Ruke Ruke
- RUKE is Privately Trained as an Artist Since the Third Grade.
- He Still Has Every Star Wars Toy Since Childhood.
- He Married his Wife 3 Months After 1st Date…It’s been 20 Years with 4 Daughters.
- They Plays Video Games as a Family on a Weekly Basis.
- RUKE Started his First Company 22+ Years Ago and is Still Making Money With It Today.
- Invented a Method for Bringing Video Games to Life.
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