FULL VIDEO: COFFEE KING Phillip Di Bella Talks About Success

At a recent Business to Community at St Columban’s College (B2C at StC), Caboolture event, Coffee King Phillip Di Bella shared 10 tips he has learned on his journey to success with the audience and students.

Phillip Di Bella provided insight as to what his 10 tips helped him achieve.

“So I’ve had a good journey, started in 2002 with nothing and built Australia’s largest specialty coffee company – I officially exited 30 June last year,” Phillip Di Bella said in the video above.

“I still consult back and I have gone on to build businesses in India, Thailand, China, and recently in New York.”

Phillip Di Bella also participated in an extensive question and answer session with the audience and students.

Video Transcript:

Speaker 1: Phillip Di Bella’s Love for business and entrepreneurship stemmed from an early age, his natural people skills lead to a career in hospitality and nine years at Brisbane Lind mar cosmopolitan cafe where he had reputation for his coffee skills and outstanding customer service.
Speaker 1: During this time, he completed a bachelor of commerce at Griffith University, having an interest in business and marketing. In 2002, his entrepreneurial spirit and passion for coffee led him to start up a small coffee roasting operation in the suburb of Bowen Hills Brisbane. He named the company Di Bella Coffee.
Speaker 1: Over the following ten years, the company continued to thrive and expand. The spate of this growth is recognised in 2006, 2007 and 2009 business review weekly phos 100. Phillip De Bella’s entrepreneurship has been celebrated in many times over the years. He was a finalist in the Ernest & Young’s young entrepreneur of the year award for 2005 and went on to win this award in 2008. In 2012, he won the Ernest & Young entrepreneur of the year northern region award in the category of industry. He was also the winner of Brisbane’s young entrepreneur world in 2010 and a highly commended award in 2011.
Speaker 1: As a fellow of the Australian Institute of Management, Philip was a finalist for honour manager of the in 2007 and one young manager of the year in 2008. He’s actively involved in the young presidents’ organisation. So if I just like to invite, Phillip up to the stage.
Phillip D: Morning all, I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t do two things. One have a coffee in my hand in to change the format. So I apologise in advance that I have been summoned by the leader of the opposition to meet with her at nine o’clock. I sit on her advisory board and she’s doing some great stuff. I did brief Franklin tonne for those that , I sit on her advisory board and I’ve got to get back to Brisbane and meet with her.
Phillip D: I’m going to cover off something. I’m going to go for about 10 minutes and then handover questions Keep it quite interactive. It’s all about you guys, not about me. Which people find unusual, right? When you get speakers at the front, I find that often they try to make it about themselves. Whereas for me, it’s all about you guys. It’s, I’m here to lend my experiences, some knowledge and share my journey so far with you guys so that you take something from it. So firstly, I thank you for having me. Secondly, I commend on, on the initiative, especially it’s fantastic to see the mix of students and businesses and so many teachers that obviously so emotionally engaged in everyone’s future. So fantastic.
Phillip D: So I’ve had a good journey, started in 2002 with nothing and built Australia’s largest specialty coffee company I officially exited 30 June last year. I still consult back and I have gone on to build businesses in India, Thailand, China, and recently in New York. So it’s been a great journey so far. What I want to share with you is ten principles that I cover, and this will no doubt change over the years, but these are the ten principles so far that have really helped me on my journey. And I wanted to share them with you. so hopefully they resonate.
Phillip D: And, here we go. First one, it doesn’t matter what business we’re in, and it doesn’t matter whether you’re at school, it doesn’t matter whether you’re in the legal, real estate, accounting, it does not matter. The first thing that I tell people is that you’re doing business with people. It doesn’t matter what industry you think you’re in, that’s just the content. What you’re actually is in the people business, what we’re doing in businesses, connecting a person to a product or service and the way that you connect that is true emotional engagement. So the better that you emotionally engage with people, then the better the result.
Phillip D: When I see people go out there and try and sell accounting services, to accountants, rather than selling accounting services to a person or selling real estate to a real estate person versus selling real estate to a person. So understanding that it’s people and you need to become an expert with people. And if you don’t become an expert with people who won’t matter what industry you’re in, it won’t work.
Phillip D: At Di Bella. When I started, there was 1500 competitors, 1,500 companies that you could buy coffee from. So if I thought I was in the coffee business, I would fail, because you could buy coffee from a 1500 other people. What I did was create a people business. I created a business that made it all about the experience and the emotional engagement that you would have when you saw the brand.
Phillip D: Second is a concept we took we call entrepreneurial intelligence and there’s a book about it, Alan Bonsall, you can download it from iTunes, entrepreneurial intelligence by Alan Bonsall. And it’s all about the concept. You’ll hear these buzzwords about entrepreneurs, there’s entrepreneur in everybody. There’s no such thing as an entrepreneur from my perspective, it’s a concept of entrepreneurial intelligence and everybody has that intelligence. And what is it is that, number one is vision, is that entrepreneurial intelligence means that you have a very clear vision of where you want to be.
Phillip D: The second thing is that you have passion. Now, passion is resilience. If you want to know whether you are passionate, it means that you never give up, so if I want to see if my children and they’re ten and eight, you’ll hear me refer them a lot, if they’re not passionate about something, it’s because they’re not resilient and if they’re not resilient, they’re not passionate. So passionate people don’t give up. They keep going. In the first year of business I got told, no, no, no. I don’t want your coffee. Most people would have given up in the first year. I didn’t. I took back the no’s, I analyse the data and I rejigged my strategy until I build a company that was about people, till I built a company that was going to hit it’s vision because it was passionate.
Phillip D: The last part of that is a thing called brand. Now, brands are not just Ferrari’s and Louis Vuitton and McDonald’s and think of your favourite brand and whatever industry, brands are also people, you’re brand. So for those of you at school, you’ve got to be, you are all hopefully working on your personal brand, because your personal brand will never leave you.
Phillip D: So the third part of entrepreneurial intelligence, people that are entrepreneurially intelligent, understand brand, they understand that brand is all about how people engage with you. So whether it’s your personal brand or your company brand, it’s all about how they emotionally engaged with you and you start to see how these concepts will link. So number one is people. Number two is entrepreneur intelligence.
Phillip D: Three, and I’m not sure what the formatting’s not worked, but that’s alright I’ll explain them. Risk Management. So people say to me, how do you know whether to… now finish that sentence with whatever you want. How do you know whether to… change schools, change jobs, buy business, sell a business, my risk management plans, always been to get comfortable with your worst possible scenario. Get comfortable with the worst possible thing that can happen in the moment that you’re comfortable with, the worst possible thing that can happen. Then go ahead. Now, my body wasn’t built for Bungee jumping and I don’t like the idea of a rug breaking so you won’t see me jumping out of a plane.
Phillip D: I’m not comfortable with the ride off a cliff. I’m not comfortable with that rug breaking, so I won’t be doing it. Yet, I’m happy to drive a fast car on a racetrack at 300 kilometres an hour. So different levels of risk will be different to different people. People said, how did you know when to sell your business? When I was comfortable with the worst possible thing that could happen, how did you not know when to start a business when I was comfortable with the worst possible thing that could happen, and so you can use that risk management for any scenario you have.
Phillip D: Four is all about telling a compelling story. You’ve got to be able to tell a story, So De Bella was one company amongst 1,500. Our job was to be able to tell a story so people could engage with us, and everything’s going to keep coming back to engagement into emotional engagement is, you have to be able to tell a story. I see so many great businesses out there, that just can’t tell a story, and then I see so many successful people that just tell a great story but can’t back it up, but if you can’t tell a story, you can’t get people to engage with you, and that’s whether it’s a school that’s working on its brand and telling its story so that it gets students to come through, whether it’s students, when you’re going to get a job or you’re starting a business, you’ve got to be able to tell a story. If you can’t tell a story, it’s not going to work.
Phillip D: Successful people, always ask me what do you find is the common denominator of success? Common Denominator of success is that those that have a habit of doing what other people are not prepared to do, so those that are able you know and prepared to go that little bit extra, that are dedicated to deliver that little bit more I find are the ones that are successful.
Phillip D: The ones that you know, push your train that extra hour, that study, that extra hour, that go out and see that extra client, that will sit there and analyse their business. Those that will go above and beyond service their customers above their expectation. That’s what I find builds success, so forming a habit of doing what other people are not prepared to do, to me, I’ve found is what makes you stand out. And then the opposite side of that is people say, well, what’s the common denominator of failure? And it’s poor communication. To me, things fire when we don’t communicate and member communication is not just speaking. It’s also the way we present, It’s the way we called ourselves, It’s the way we see, It’s the way we look, We’re constantly communicating. right? You guys are communicating with me right now, lucky no one’s asleep right, but, it’s always about communication. The common denominator of failure go into a restaurant who’s a vegetarian, no, gluten free, lactose intolerant.
Audience: Right here.
Phillip D: You guys are the decision makers when you go into a cafe or restaurant, but you say there was only a couple of you in the room, right? But you guys are the decision makers. Why, if somebody doesn’t serve lactose free or gluten free or vegetarian food? The restaurant go, yet so many people want to cater to the majority, but it’s actually the minority that make the decision. So many menus in a restaurant don’t communicate well. Well, think of the last time you went to a restaurant. If there’s only one thing on that menu that you like, you’ll only go once because there’s so many others.
Phillip D: If you sit down at the restaurant or cafe and there’s 10 items that you’d like to order, and unless you’re Italian or European in order everything and just share it. You’re going to be back there pretty quickly because you want to experience it again, so menus communicate to you. So I see so many cafes and restaurants not communicate well with customers just by their menu. The name, people get caught up in name and they think that brand is a name. Brand is not name and colour. Brand is how it emotionally engages with you so you can poorly communicate when it comes to brand very quickly, some people like to call things weird names, well, if you can’t pronounce something, how are you going to talk about it? If you’re going to talk about it, how do you tell a compelling story so you start to see how these things link.
Phillip D: Do I have enough trouble with Di Bella? Yes people still do call a Di Bella, Di Bella. I suppose that’s better. Some call it dot bellow. Don’t ask me where you get an O from an A. I don’t know, but it was strange for me to call that off to my son. I am because you know, I grew up when it wasn’t as tough as my older brother, but I grew up in a time where Italians were just beginning to be accepted. Now everybody thinks they’re Italian or they want to be Italian. So they go to buy salami and mortadella and sun dried tomatoes from the Delis back then they used to kill us at school if we turned up with sun dried tomatoes. Right? Calling something after your name 15 years ago that was Italian was fine but if my brother, who’s 13 years old I was calling in 13 years earlier, you’d find it would have been a different story. So that whole communication is so important.
Phillip D: The key to it is to understand your audience, is to understand who you’re communicating to and for the students in the room, it’s no different. The principles are exactly the same. It’s just that right now your business is schooling, your brain is your brain. It’s not a company, but when you step out and some of you work for others and some of you going open your own business, it won’t change. These principles will not change. Just the content will change and I’m happy for this presentation to be shared to whoever wants it.
Phillip D: Seven, and this is something that I really throw in there because it’s something that I’ve struggled with over 15 years of going at 100 miles an hour. Is that a better you equals a better life. So constantly working on yourself and understanding that these three areas, and if you get nothing else from today, taken out of this, everybody’s life is split into the same three areas, personal, professional, and family. So when you’re building your goals, when you’re looking at your vision plans and your mapping and whatever you want to call it, make sure that you have goals and a vision for each area, a vision for yourself, a vision for your family, and a vision for your professional.
Phillip D: For students, obviously your family is your brothers, siblings, parents, grandparents, or the rest of it. Your profession is your school life. It doesn’t change. I talk like this to my 10 year old and my eight year old. They’ve got goals in all three areas, personal goals, They’ve got family goals and they’ve got schooling goals, and the three areas don’t change. And what I find is a lot of people just set goals and they are all around work, or all around school or they’re all around family. There’s nothing there for them. So that perfect better you, equals a better life means, to work on all three areas of your life. So that you have a better life and by becoming a better person.
Phillip D: Rhythm is a marketing term. Who’s heard it before? Guys, the sooner you understand this, as soon as you understand the law of the land, what’s in it for me? Nobody does nothing without something being in it for them, and that’s not a selfish thing. The key to great communicate is the key to great business people, the key to great humanity is to understand what’s in it for somebody else. So the moment you understand what’s in it for me, meaning for the other person and for you, then you can go out and communicate. You can then go out and emotionally engage. You can then go out and achieve what it is that you want, but you need to understand the rhythm. Nobody does anything for nothing, not even giving to charities.
Phillip D: You give to charities because you believe in that cause, you give to charity because you want to feel part of community. There’s always a why you give to charity. So I had this argument for about 10 minutes with someone over at a dinner table once and he wanted to argue there are just give to charity because I gave. Well that doesn’t make sense. I don’t expect anything in return. I didn’t say you did, but what’s in it for the charity that you just gave? Oh, well I’m supportive. Why do you support it? Well, my son has been diagnosed with diabetes. Well, There is your rhythm, the rhythm is that you want to say hopefully a cure for diabetes or diabetes to be better manage. There is your rhythm and any after 10 minutes he got it. So rhythm are not a bad thing. Understanding what’s in it for me is not a bad thing. It’s a necessity. You need to understand what’s in it for you and you need to understand it what’s in it for the other person.
Phillip D: Nine. Anytime you want to get into an argument, I’ve got a diploma at Harvard University and Strategic Negotiation, right? And the number one thing I took from that diploma I’m sharing with you right now, negotiation which everything is a negotiation, lies in understanding this concept. Any time you’re negotiating, there’s only three ways you can do it and negotiating, it can be conversation. It doesn’t matter. It’s always the same. You can either have a discussion around your power, your rights or interests, and you’ll find those that negotiate best, can always keep a conversation in the best interests of somebody. So if you combine that with rhythm, you become very very powerful. You combine that with the ability to tell a story and all the other principles I’ve covered so far, you start to see how this roadmap comes and you start to see how the developed brand was able to grow so quickly and become number one So well.
Phillip D: We kept discussions, not that I knew at the time in the best interests of people. We didn’t talk about our rights, we didn’t talk about our power. It wasn’t I have the right to charge you this price. I charge this price because in the interest of the farmer or the worker or whatever it is, I keep the discussions, keep the negotiation, especially those in real estate. Keep the discussion at interests not at rights and power, and you watch how success happens.
Phillip D: And the last one, most important 10th principle. It’s all about you because without you there’s nothing else. So that’s again is not a selfish thing. It’s about you. It’s about making sure that you’re constantly understanding that it’s you that sits in the middle and everything revolves around it. And I see so many people that don’t make the focus about them. And again, that is not a selfish concept. You can’t give greatness to somebody else without working on being great yourself. So, and that’s something that I’ve learned over the years is that for me to be able to go out and help others, I’ve got to be able to make sure that I’m in the right position to do that. And in order to do that, I’ve got to make sure that it’s about me. So there’s gotta be a little bit of that selfishness in being selfless. You can’t completely be selfless and you can’t be selfish. Makes Sense?
Audience: Yes.
Phillip D: So we’ll spend the next 10 minutes or so, 15 minutes questions, from you guys. We got a roaming mic here, I believe. No questions?
Speaker 3: My question is around, aspect of fear you said many have to be prepared to walk through the worst possible outcome to get, could you explain a little more.
Phillip D: Yeah, for sure. Everybody’s fear and again, this all from my perspective, comes from the fear of failure. We fear is unless your, obviously jumping out of planes or depending on the risk of your job, but most fear, fear of changing schools, fear of being honest, fear of whatever it comes up, because is is the fear of failure that you think you’re going to fail, which then only ties back to an emotional reaction is that I look stupid. It’s the emotion attached to the failure. So I’ll break it down into you can’t file if you don’t stop, right?
Phillip D: You might fail an exam once that you can still pass that exam if you take the exam again, right? So you can only once you stop. So it’s a very simple concept. Is that getting rid of that fear of failure is to constantly keep going, to not stop. The second part is the hardest part, the emotion that is attached to the failure because we’re all the motive. That’s what we are as human beings. We’re all about emotions and that’s why I say the key to anything you’d be say, what’s the silver bullet is being able to emotionally engage or at times emotionally disengage.
Phillip D: Now some of the tips that I use around disengagement is pausing. So when something comes up I pause and then I’ll reflect and then I still keep finding myself coming back to what’s the worst possible thing that can happen right now and using that template, especially around emotions helps me. Like when people said, how can you sell your business? It’s your surname. Well, yeah, you’re right, it’s a business, but my surname stays with me, so what’s the worst thing that can happen? Somebody is going to destroy that brand, so what do I need to do?
Phillip D: Then separate brand Phillip Di Bella with brand Di Bella coffee, and it’s one of the reasons why Alan Bonsall, wrote that entrepreneurial intelligence book was to do exactly that, to separate brand Phillip, the Di Bella with Di Bella coffee, because I want, I didn’t tell you is an entrepreneur intelligence was written about me and the catalyst for that book was exactly that. To separate the brand. So that’s just a little bit of a story of how I get my fear of failure was they’re going to destroy my brand. How do I feel about that? Oh, it’s my surname. How do I then go about fixing it? So I paused. I reflected the not strategized other questions. Yes,
Speaker 4: No doubt. You don’t go around to every outlet and sell your coffee yourself. So when you developed your business and you had to employ people, what would be the three things that you looked at when you employed people? This is also to help students when they get take jobs and when they leave school and get jobs in their future career. What are three things you look at when you’re employing for your Business to be successful?
Phillip D: Great. The three things I look at, attitude, attitude, an attitude. Let me elaborate. Whose written a resume? Who has written one? Great. Who’s read one. Alright, now have you ever read one that says I’m a Moody Little Prick and all turn up to work in different levels of mood and if the public holidays on a Tuesday, I might not show up on a Monday because I’m sick or the cat got run over and I’ll make up some bullshit excuse. You see where I’m going with this. So I’ve never seen originally that doesn’t say I’m conscientious, trustworthy, hardworking, diligent, blah blah, blah blah. So the first thing I do is rip up the resume and you know what? I’d do three questions.
Phillip D: Where do you want to be in 12 months? What does your vision look like? Where do you want to be in three years? And I don’t care what they say, but if they don’t have a vision, they don’t have a plan. There’s no way that they’re going to help me achieve mine. And the third one, what am I going to hate most about you? It’s not what am I going to like about you and you know, what, if I’m comfortable with what they say, firstly what I’m looking for. So it’s the depth of the question that I’m ground. Do they know themselves what I’m going to hate about them? Do they know themselves? So they’re very strategic questions is not the answer that I’m looking for. It’s what the answer to me. So do they have a plan? Do they have a long term plan and do they know themselves?
Phillip D: That’s what I’m looking for because guess what, in my industry, I’m lucky we’re not dealing in surgery and law and it because it depends on the business, depends on the industry. I hire on attitude and teach skill. So my director of development who became my number one director of development, she was with Di Bella a 13 years. She’s now going on to start her own coffee company. She started working in a cafe. She’d never been to university, never knew how to use a computer and certainly didn’t know how to use a diary. And I employed her as my P.A Yeah, I was brave right? but she had the best attitude. You can imagine. She had the right attitude, she was dedicated, she knew exactly what she wanted to do. She wanted to learn. She was hungry and she was great with people.
Phillip D: She worked way up after the first six months of me telling it, open a diary every day and write things down to become the director of development. She started with minus $400 in a bank account don’t asked me how and finished with owning two houses, married with a little baby at 30 years old. Great Journey. Why? She had the right attitude. She a clear vision where she wanted to be and she knew how to build a plan, but she was amazing with people. So they are the the key that I find and I went on to employ people with that and remember this, when I built a team, I built a team of orchestra, so my job was to be the conductor. Whereas I see companies that just want to build dramas or stem clarinet players or strings. You need an orchestra that comes together, so you need people that are strong in different areas.
Phillip D: There is a place of work or a business to own for every single person in the room. Not everyone’s going to be a business owner, but you don’t need to be. You can be what Richard Branson calls the entrepreneur, which is you can have high entrepreneur intelligence doing great things within an organisation because the second part of that I’ll elaborate on my job then when I had great people within the organisation was to keep them and you want to know the best way to keep them? And that’s how I ended up with 70 different businesses, is given them reason not to leave. If you want people so good in your business and for those of you coming out of school and aspiring, you want to be the person that you’re so good that somebody has to give you a reason not to leave, and I ended up with a lot of sub businesses.
Phillip D: Because it’s how you want to open a cafe, right? I’ll invest in it. You want to open a coffee company? I’ll invest in it. She’s, in marketing businesses or different stuff because they were good enough that I didn’t want them to leave, but I had to give them a reason not to. I had a sales guy in Melbourne on $750,000 a year, but imagine what he was making the company, so he was able to run his own business and we rented a bit like a real estate agent. He was able to run his own business within our business, so we grew our business.
Phillip D: So if you employ people, that is your job is to two stage. One, get people in the organisation that share your vision, that have the right attitude, that can help you develop and deliver what you want to achieve, but then you’ve got it. Part two is you got to give me a reason not to move because I’m sick of hearing people. I was so good. I treated well and they left. Well, that’s great. The left because you didn’t get married and not to so something to ponder.
Speaker 5: Yeah. Thank you. When you were first starting out, how did you handle rejection was it how you were presenting yourself and your product or was it a where you had to rebrand and how did you go about it?
Phillip D: Yeah, great question. So again, rejection comes back to emotion. So the number one thing you’ll find is manage your emotions, right? And that is the hardest thing to do, especially when you’re talking to a son of Sicilian parents and you. I grew up with everyone going like this and talking and screaming. And I said, tell the neighbours, don’t call the police. My parents aren’t fighting. They just talk loud. I show you everything’s is okay.Managing emotions is always going to be…
Phillip D: And kids, that’s one of the things I talked to my 10 year old, eight year old all the time. Learn to manage your emotion. So it’s freaky. When an eight year old says, Hey dad, I’m having a moment, but it’ll pass and you go, do I slap or do. Am I just proud? And I don’t hit my kids for the record, right? It’s been live streams, I might end up…Or proud that he’s actually in check with these emotions. So taking an emotion, pausing, reflecting is number one. Right?
Phillip D: However, this is a model that I use most constantly. Most people want to go to data collection to strategy. The best advice I’ll give you is the best business people in the world have a knack of analysing data. And I can tell you two stories. So data analysis, then strategy. So when I went to Melbourne, so we did well in Queensland, but starting 2000 to 2005 went to Melbourne. I thought what’s next? Let’s take on the coffee capital of the world. Or they believe they are anyone from Melbourne here. Yet you know that you guys think you have the coffee capital of the world. So that was the hot as it. I’ll take on the hardest place.
Phillip D: No worries. Let’s do this. So for six months, no. What sort of idiot “no” is a polite word. What sort of idiot thinks that someone from Melbourne’s going to buy coffee from a Queenslander. So after six months of this I said, I’m going to sit back, get rid of the emotion because was a few people I’d love to hurt, and I sat back and I went, okay, let’s take the data and analyse it. So I sat back, I was looking at what other coffee companies did and when I was sitting in those watching coffee companies deliver coffee and the guides walk in with scrubbing, torn jeans and a tee shirt, get the coffee out of the van, drop it off, write a handwritten receipt, take the money, and leave.
Phillip D: Started to build strategy around that analysis. I’ve got to start building a service company. So I looked at it and I said, who’s going to benefit from service owner operators? I’m going to target Melbourne, owner operators who have only ever been delivered a product before. And what I’m going to do to start training their staff service, their coffee machine, given business advice, use my marketing degree and help them with branding.
Phillip D: And guess what? We went from zero to the largest in Melbourne and that was all around data analysis, and strategy. Keep spinning the Rubik’s cube until someone says yes, that was the key. Now don’t mind from Domino’s You know that brand Domino’s. Don’s ere very good friend of mine, [inaudible 00:28:54] oh, gluten free pizza bases. You need to look at that because we don’t sell a lot of them. And the short version very simply, Don, went back and said, but every time we sell a gluten free pizza, we sell 10 other pieces with it. So if I get rid of gluten free pizza, we lose on the other 10 pizza sales. So classic example of looking at data analysis and strategy. If you don’t analyse your data, you’re not always going to come up with the right strategy. So number one, learn how to deal with the emotions that will help you with everything. And it’s not easy. That’s a work in progress. And then two is really understand that format of data analysis and then strategy. Yes
Speaker 6: Hi Phillip and thanks again for coming this morning.
Phillip D: You’re welcome.
Speaker 6: We all know you’re a busy man, but for the kids in the room or the students in the room, this is priceless to hear from men of this knowledge in business. My question, you Phillip I’m in real estate, I spent a lot of time analysing and strategizing and looking at the market trends, etc. Trying to find gaps in a marketplace that we can deliver a service that no one else is doing. For yourself, you just explained that, but would you have ever predicted the cafe culture or the coffee culture that has risen in the last 10 years? And when I say, did you predict it? Like I’m looking for the, what’s the next thing in real estate and cannot predict that we’re going to have a spark or a growth in a certain aspect of real estate. Did you see that cafe culture emerging? And that’s where you then grew with it?
Phillip D: Great. So I’ll answer it in two parts. One first part is I’ll answer the question with the coffee and second I’ll give you a bit of something to think about for your industry. So I’ve had a bit of a knack to look at things with a really long lens, so three to five years and have a look at what’s going on. And so the short answer is yes, I could see what was going on in the cafes, but I looked at the design principle data, analysis, strategy. So the data was telling me that people are drinking coffee, but before 2002 they were drinking instant coffee, hands up, especially the older people in the room. An instant coffee. Yeah. Well, 80% of coffee drunk in his country was instant. So I then started to look at what was wrong with instant. And as the other effect is the peripheral factors started to happen, about the chemicals and all the rest of it.
Phillip D: You saw this explosion of real coffee, which we call espresso coffee now it’s all coffee. So the consumption of coffee was never going to change. And the past will be the same in the future, the consumption of coffee was never going to change. What was going to change is how people actually made it and how they and where they drank it. Now the future is exactly the same. People are making more coffee at home. They’re getting better machines at home. They’re getting better machines in their offices . So they’re not actually drinking any less coffee. What they’re doing is they’re just consuming it in different venues that if anything they drinking more coffee, said the [inaudible 00:32:03] anyone in the coffee business is to say, well, where do I diversify and hold that word? How do I diversify so that I’m still serving coffee, but I’m not just playing in one silo.
Phillip D: So for cafes, what we started to do was we helped independent cafes sell bags of coffee to offices, so we used to say you’re buying 20 or 30 bags a week or 40 and 100 bags a week through your machines, but habits selling another 20, 30, 40, 50 bags to people in their homes or to their offices so that you start to diversify. Now bringing it to Yourself in real estate, your transaction for many years. It’s so traditional, the industry that it stops once the sale happens with the purchase happens, but why? Why isn’t it the real estate agents that owned the cleaning companies or own the butler service, so that keeps or own any sort of business that keeps people interacting with you past the purchase or the silent. Makes sense?
Phillip D: So that’s something I’d be exploring in your industry is what’s next? And can I tell you, and we’re talking about it before, if you’re looking for a silver bullet, just communicate. What I did to Di Bella was I always brought in our customers in front of our staff in front of our senior executive team. I used to bring in twice a year. Our customers, usually the ones that might not have been happy with us and I used to sit them in front and do a Q&A style where we would ask them what they were happy with, what they weren’t happy with. If they were running the business, what would they do and more importantly, what problems do you foresee next year in your industry and so when they would tell us the problems, we would map them. We then develop strategies. We didn’t build a coffee company. We build the world’s best franchise system with no franchise fees because we didn’t charge any fees.
Phillip D: We didn’t have any contracts. Our customers chose to be with us because we cared about their business. Remember that word cause you’re going to hear a lot of it soon. Because I am working on that word with some politicians. Care. Cut the bullshit, cut everything else, all the fancy slogans and all the rest of it. But if you can show you care and that’s where you are at school, whether you are working for someone or whether you’re in business, care. If you show that you care, you will emotionally engage, but that care has to be authentic.
Phillip D: But bringing people in, people forget the idea of just having a conversation. I start with what problems are you having? What is your biggest problem in your business? What do you see the problems will be next year? Then you start to analyse that data because the problem, that question brings out data, they analyse it. Then as a community, as a group, I didn’t build strategy or mine, I used my clients to build strategy. I’ll use my team to build strategy, I used conversation to build strategy, and people just forget how to have a conversation. Yes.
Speaker 7: What were you doing around the age of 17, 18, 16 what were you doing job wise?
Phillip D: So what I was really good at was knowing what I wanted and I was a son of migrants. And my dad constantly had conversations with me. So tip one, I surrounded myself with the right people, right? Always make sure you spend…
Phillip D: And the right people who might be your parents. It might be friends, it might be whatever. Tip two I always looked at people that got things wrong and I didn’t want to be that person because there’s no way better to learn, than seeing, not that I’m a sadist a steroid or a narcissist or whatever way you want use, but no one ever wants to be the person who fails. So the one thing, and I look at businesses now and I say, well, I studied the businesses that don’t do well and look at why and make sure that I don’t repeat those mistakes.
Phillip D: When I was in 16, 17, and even when I was 12, I used to look at kids that got things wrong. The kids that got in trouble and looked at the why.And a lot of it was they were surrounded with the wrong people, the wrong friends. That night. They didn’t have a vision of what I wanted to be, you know, all the rest of it. So those two things were. The key is understanding that look, analysing things by looking at the people that get things wrong, but surrounding yourself with the right people. What I knew I wanted my vision is that my dad used to have to work on Sundays because paid double time. He worked at the hospital.
Phillip D: He used to earn $450 a week backward. Now, to give you an idea, I had a Queensland ranking. I supplied tenants with pat rafter as juniors, my tennis shoes for $200 of pay, so my dad was working his butt off and it’s not like we never went on holidays and all the rest of, but she’s had a grandchild upbringing because what they did was instead of going on fancy holidays and all the rest of it, we used to have family around the table and go to the same beach or Radcliffe, and that’s where I grew up.
Phillip D: On Saturdays we’d be at the beach with all the cousins having a barbecue, interacting, having conversation, having the right people around me, but I constantly had a vision of what I wanted and what I didn’t want. So even my dad taught me what I didn’t want. I wanted enough money to do what I want when I want. I want it to be able to spend weekends with my children, so that’s not a negative thing. Looking at things that, of things that people that don’t do right, that you would like to do better, don’t think that’s negative. It’s actually quite positive to look at that. Especially in business, to analyse the businesses that get things wrong. I could never built De Bella coffee if I hadn’t worked nine years prior. Year, nine years these days. People weren’t last nine hours in a business that I liked.
Phillip D: I worked nine years in a business that had so much potential, but got it so wrong and I just kept the file and then in 2002 when the timing is right, I went out and started my own, but had I not spent the nine years there would never built that company. People never went out against me and succeeded. No, because I was great because you know why? Every day I tried to build the best company I could possibly build so that if anyone went out against me and they did, they would just be an imposter. They will just copy me and there’s people that did leave and go on and open businesses and they’re doing okay. They’re doing. Some of them are doing well, but they never built the size business idea because no one ever wants fake Louis Vuitton. No one wants a fake Ferrari.
Phillip D: No one wants fake Nike’s because you know that they’re fake and no one wants that feeling, so if you build the best possible business, people will leave you and try and imitate you, but they will only imitate you. Yet one of the biggest tips I’ll give the students is if you can go and work in a business that has potential, but it’s not doing things well. Stay and learn. Understand the data and analyse it and then go and build a strategy to either take what you’ve learned into another business or create your own, and that is one of the biggest tips I’ll give you because everyone’s looking for the self gratification and joy and happiness, but there’s not a lot of opportunity in self-gratification. Opportunity, enjoy, enjoy. You know where the opportunities are, problems where people don’t do things right. That opens a door when people say, I’m opening a cafe and I go, why are you opening a cafe?
Phillip D: What are you going to do different? Why are you opening it on a street that…
Phillip D: But everyone else on the street is doing such a good job? Well, that’s the last place I’d be opening. It makes sense, right? Open it in a place that’s not doing well but has potential or offer something different. That’s why you saw the paleo cafes, the vegetarian cafe’s offer a pointed difference. Be first to be different and unfortunately in life there’s not a lot of things you’re going to be first at, so you’re going to definitely need to be different. Now, guys, before I forget. Remember we talked about conversations, people forget it and I’ll put a few of the tips together, what I’ve done and explain the why on iTunes, Spotify or google. You can download the following. It’s called flash cost by PDB and what it is myself having five to 10 minute conversations about a topic, and the topics not just for business owners as business stuff in there, but there’s marketing stuff.
Phillip D: I was asked the other day about estate planning that wills, so time management. I just did one recently will be uploaded for next week on cafes from the perspective of consumers as well as business owners. So if you download it and you’ll listen to it, but I also encourage people then to send back to subscribe to it. It’s free, send in questions. You could do it as a school. BDO one of the big accounting firms did it as a as a company. They sent in five questions and I did a whole flash cast, it was under 10 minutes on entering those questions and I gave him a shout out. So as a school, send that in to put some questions together and I’ll do an actual dedicated flashcards to st Columbus high no problems. And St Columban’s College, I think it’s the branding?
Phillip D: But yeah, and the reason I did that is so that I get a lot of requests for mentoring and I can’t spread myself thin. It so that he can have the richer data. So it’s general conversations unscripted. There’s one day where someone gets to you “you on a treadmill and” I was on the treadmill talking because it’s not scripted and all the rest that comes from my heart comes from my head. It comes from experience, it comes from learning. But I do encourage you to read about 1500 downloads in the last seven days and again up 10 or 12 days.
Phillip D: So get onto a flash cast by PDB. It’s free of charge. You can listen to when you can. No, they’re between five and 10 minutes. Nothing over 10 minutes said that they’re short, sharp. You can listen to them on the way to school to work in the car, whatever. But it’s just my way of sharing some of the knowledge and wisdom so far. So if you’ve liked what I’ve talked about today, then get on board. If not, no problem. It’s your journey. It’s all about you. It’s not about me guys. Thank you very much. Enjoy the rest of the morning and sorry, I do need to go, but um, thanks for having me.
Speaker 1: Thank you.

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