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Ep. 14 — Vincent Aguirre, Founder and President of Distinct, talks about parenthood and helping local businesses grow.

Digital Agency Owners Podcast
Digital Agency Owners Podcast
Ep. 14 — Vincent Aguirre, Founder and President of Distinct, talks about parenthood and helping local businesses grow.

On our latest episode of the GoWP Digital Agency Owners Podcast, we welcome Vincent Aguirre, Founder and President of Distinct. We talk about how he deals with his son’s hydronephrosis, his drive to look out for small business owners, his support for local communities, his mental framework for problem-solving as a gamer, and much more.  

Read the transcript

Morayo: [00:00:00] Welcome everyone to the GoWP digital agency owners podcast, where we chat with members of our WordPress community and go behind the website and find out the secrets of their business and life success. I’m Morayo Orija GoWPs director of creative services.

Joanne: [00:00:20] And I’m Joanna Torres. I just want to say a couple of words about GoWP in case anyone here isn’t fully familiar with us. At GoWP we create happiness for digital agencies and help them become more profitable.

Whether it’s joining in our incredibly valuable weekly calls, our happiness hour calls, or if you’re looking to grow your team with a developer or a copywriter, a designer, or a project manager, we got you covered. We also have services like case study services, blogging services, website maintenance, content edits, or page builds that you can completely outsource to our team?

Morayo: [00:01:03] Oh, Joanne, we offer a lot of value and services to agencies, price hill, where can an interested listener go to learn more about our services?

Joanne: [00:01:15] They can go to gowp.com or our social media channels. So GoWP support on Twitter and GoWP at everywhere else. So Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and get all of our updates of what’s going on. So I think after now that we got all of that out of the way, let’s welcome our guests today.

Morayo: [00:01:37] Yes. Today we have Vincent Aguirre. He is a long-time friend and partner of GoWP. He’s also the founder and president of Distinct, a company which is made up of a digital marketing experts who helps small business owners handle their web design and business systems. Over the last decade, Vince has worked with over 400 small businesses and non-profits.

He brings a passion for listening to their needs, understanding their challenges, and developing creative solutions that help them grow. Distinct works with everyone from solopreneurs to companies with over 400 employees, but don’t be mistaken, Distinct exists to help small businesses compete with the big guys, the corporations, Vince is also a proud son of Chicago, Southside, and currently resides in Greencastle, Indiana with his wife, Shelby and someone new who we’re about to talk about in a moment, welcome Vince

Vincent: [00:02:30] Thank you so much for having me. I’m happy to be here.

Morayo: [00:02:32] Or thrilled to have you. And the, the new arrival who I just alluded to is your new baby six weeks old, congratulations.

Vincent: [00:02:43] Thank you so much. I think it’s six weeks and four days now, but you know, I’m

Joanne: [00:02:48] Almost seven weeks. It’s so interesting to me that once people become parents, the reference of time becomes weeks. I find that so fascinating because I have yet to be there and now I’m like, I find myself doing all these. I’m not much of a math person, but I find myself doing all these mental gymnastics, like, okay, that is one, one month and two weeks, depending on the month.

Vincent: [00:03:13] You know, I never thought of that, but now that you mentioned it, I think it’s because you just lose track of days. Like I, you know, I’ve been self-employed now I work from home for like six, seven years. So I kind of gotten used to like no structure in my daily life. But my wife was a teacher, you know, she has no idea like what day it is, anytime that point of reference, because like, you know, your sleep is off and everything’s different.

So that’s probably why weeks are a little easier. Now I know, like when Sunday comes and that’s about all I can keep track of.

Joanne: [00:03:44] I love that. You have expanded my fascination with this now.

Morayo: [00:03:49] I’m about to blow your mind a little bit more Joanne. Since you said that your mind doesn’t work in that way, thinking in weeks, I’d have to find the URL, but there’s a website where you can type in like your, your birth date or your age, and it’ll spit out how many weeks old you are.

How many months old? I mean, how many days you’ve been alive? My dad, he was like, well, my dad’s like 73. So he was like, what is this? Anyway? So I’ll find that and I’ll share it with you. So parenthood, parenthood, amazing. You know, it’s one of the topics Vince that comes up frequently for agency owners, who we speak with or work with because they reflect on the challenge of balancing business and family life. And we talk about the formula that works for them, allowing time to take vacation, to be with their families more, or to attend those special events with their kids. You certainly have an entrepreneurial spirit. So how has the role of parents in the last six weeks and four days, how has this new role of parent impacted the way you view and plan doing business going forward?

Vincent: [00:04:56] Yeah, I’m still adapting. And I think in some ways I’ve always known, I wanted this flexibility for a family. You know, when I started Distinct I was working a full-time job somewhere else, and I didn’t like the flexibility and I wanted to kind of take control. But now it’s kind of, I’m finding a new balance, right?

We’re remote first. We technically have an office location, but we don’t have employees, they, we’re distributed team. So that’s not an issue, but trying to find the balance of, you know, how much should I be working right now? Am I technically on leave? Like, should I be spending time on the couch with family and not in my office?

So that’s been a unique balance, but you know, being an agency owner, it’s allowed me more flexibility than I would in other opportunities. So I think we’re on to stay tuned and figure out how I really find the balance, but right now I’ve been demanding some work and then some family time.

And it’s kind of you know, this morning, I think I woke up at three and started working while making sure he was okay and feeding him throughout the night. And I, you know, I’ve, I might be done with work after this call today. But I might pick, pick up work all day tomorrow. It’s hard to tell.

Joanne: [00:05:59] Oh because you essentially already had a whole day, it’s, it’s you already did your eight hours. I mean, if again, not adhering to these time construct, but if we were to think about it in a nine to five, you’ve essentially done half a day of work. So it sounds like it works.

Vincent: , [00:06:19] It’s so far. It is. Yeah. And what I’m trying to do right now, just to find balance is five hours of work in front of a computer. So like this, I’m considering work, so by the time this is done, I’ll be at like four hours and 45 minutes for the day. It’s like, that’s my goal right now. And I’ll adapt as time goes by.

Morayo: [00:06:34] And if you like, we can stretch this out as we

Vincent: [00:06:36] That’s fine too. We can do that.

Morayo: [00:06:38] Can fill that four hours for you.

Joanne: [00:06:40] I mean because things I’ve noticed that as you work in different companies, whether it’s your own agency or you’re working in a startup or a big corporation, a lot of the times, the framework that you have to have is what works for us and what works for us is it’s the best framework when you have these big variables that you don’t essentially, you essentially can’t control. So I found that really, really interesting.

Morayo: [00:07:08] And speaking of things that we can’t control and something that you have shared with us that you are comfortable sharing publicly you know, you’ve shared that your son, your newborn has a condition called if I pronounce it correctly. Hydro. Hydro.

Joanne: [00:07:25] Hydronephrosis

Vincent: [00:07:27] There you go.

Joanne: [00:07:28] Hydronephrosis yes.

Morayo: [00:07:30] You share that, you know, publicly, not just to keep your family and friends in the loop, but also to raise awareness of this condition.

So would you mind if I’d never heard of it before I learned of your son’s condition situation? So would you mind explaining what this condition is and how you and Shelby are navigating this experience with him?

Vincent: [00:07:52] Absolutely. And thanks for asking. So hydronephrosis is a blanket term for an enlarged kidney in newborns about one in 100 newborn boys will come, we’ll have the condition but oftentimes it can resolve itself both before birth, but also even before it’s found. In our case, it was found at the 20-week anatomy scan. And we started seeing a specialist at that point to kind of manage but it, various reasons can cause hydronephrosis you know, for some adults it could be kidney stones and in Xavier’s case it’s the, and I apologize that I’m not a fluent in the medical term, so I’m just gonna break it down and kind of my terms, it is the connection between the kidney and the bladder is clogged. And it’s hard to tell why, but it’s basically just didn’t develop properly. So that means one of his kidneys is just backing up with fluid. So in his case, the next week we’re actually gonna be having a stint put in to help that and reduce the blockage when the kidney and hopefully reserve some of his kidney health.

You know, everyone has two kidneys and normally they operate 50 50 in his case, one is working 70% and the other is working 20 75, 25. So the goal is to kind of prevent more damage and allow him to have two kidneys, even if one’s a little healthier than the other You know, the reason I found it was important.

So we started this blog it’s hydronephrosis to hubs or substack.com. And the reason I wanted to share that is because you know, when we first found out we were terrified the doctor kind of said, you know, here’s what it is. You use medical terms. So you said you’re seeing a specialist. You know, we had no idea, like that was absolutely terrifying.

So my hope in sharing this is that people who might hear those same words and go on Google or, you know, post on Facebook, what kind of find my resources or other resources to know that it’s okay. To know that it’s, it’s very manageable. You know, obviously, you don’t want anything wrong with a newborn. You don’t want. Any surgery, you don’t want specialist visits. But in the grand scheme of things, hydronephrosis is really manageable. There’s a lot of skilled doctors that can kind of take care of it and help him function a, a long, healthy, normal life. But in that initial shock, we were just, you know, what’s, what is this what’s going on?

So that’s my biggest reason of sharing it publicly and starting the sub stack is just so people know that you know, this can be managed. It’s very frequent, very common, even if you don’t hear about it. And in some cases, it can resolve itself before. You know, they read it on a severity level, one to four, and, and Xavier’s case, it is a four a, which is the most severe but there’s a whole spectrum of conditions and whatnot.

And I think it’s okay to kind of talk about that and help people find resources.

Morayo: [00:10:16] Yeah.

Joanne: [00:10:16] Of course. And where can people subscribe to your subside?

Vincent: [00:10:20] Yeah. So it’s hydronic hydronephrosis.substack.com. I wasn’t thinking very creatively when I created the name, but.

Joanne: [00:10:28] It sounds directly to the point

Vincent: [00:10:30] Yeah. Exactly. That’s the point?

Joanne: [00:10:32] That’s what matters.

Morayo: [00:10:33] You know, I hope that at least one person picks up on this podcast, and here’s the story and, and really takes your experience to heart. Because they’re about to go through it. New parents were about to go through about to experience or about to find out, hear that word for the first time.

Give that is a scary-sounding word, but it’s amazing that you said that the body can frequently self-correct and sometimes parents are none the wiser that it occurs. So, you know, my prayers, thoughts, blessings, heart to, you know, you and little Xavier as he undergoes that surgery next week.

Vincent: [00:11:09] Yeah, thank you very much. And you know, I have to say what inspired me to create it was my wife had posted, we had been sharing publicly about Xavier for a few weeks and one of her friends reached out and said that on her anatomy scan something was going on with the kidneys. So, you know, I realized there are people out there who just can’t find these resources.

And, and to be honest, I joined some Facebook groups that comforted me with other parents who were having this same surgeries and whatnot, and just seeing their success stories and, you know, Oh, my two-month-old didn’t even know what happened. I was the one that was sad and now they’re happy. So I’m just trying to replicate that in a, in a form that, you know, my expertise, right.

Marketing, SEO. I’m hoping that I can make it very searchable and findable and have the same, like you said, at one person would be a success.

Joanne: [00:11:50] Yeah, of course, because it’s, it is also fairly common within small boys. You said one in 100.

Vincent: [00:11:07] One in 100 and I believe it’s one in 200 for girls. So it’s more common in boys, but I think those are the stats. Someone else can Google it and tell me if I’m wrong, but I’m pretty sure that’s what I read.

Morayo: [00:12:07] Go to the Google, go to the Google machine. The power of digital communications is awesome.

Vincent: [00:12:14] Oh yeah.

Joanne: [00:12:16] So we mentioned that you have, moving on a little bit the topic of Xavier. We mentioned before that you have an entrepreneurial spirit, there goes words, people can’t pronounce entrepreneurial spirit. You co-founded a wind weight technologies in 2013 and Distinct in the same year.

But before that you had. Other professional experiences, including ten-second labs, which you founded in 2011. Additionally, you have a degree in computer science at DePaul University. So to this point in your training and work experience, they demonstrate your commitment and understanding to the technological needs of companies. So when, and how did your interest expand from, you know, tech hardware and coding into the digital marketing needs of clients into the SEO and digital marketing of things?

Vincent: [00:13:12] That’s a great question. So with when way it was a conglomerate of friends who became business partners and we tried to solve all the technology needs. And I was brought in because I was a software developer, my degree is in computer science. What slowly started to happen as we realized there was a need in our community, specifically for web design and marketing and things shifted.

And until Distinct became kind of its own entity. And really, I just continue to fill the need. You know, I started with basic websites that were really online business cards, right? No functionality, just kind of putting information out there then started offering things like website support, partnering with GoWP, and kind of using that support to offer more services and then eventually realizing that clients needed SEO and marketing and other capacities.

So you know, just kind of fitting that needs and hopefully continuing to fill a need as it arises when clients bring it up. But if you would’ve asked me anything about marketing in college, or if I wanted to have a marketing company. Look at you. Like you’re crazy. I was so technical and technically focused.

But as I started to upscale, take classes online, do certifications. I really became passionate about it.

Joanne: [00:14:17] It’s just so fascinating to me, how our interests move and change depending on our environment. So I’m sure that the environment was like a big part of that slight shift because you shared within our digital agency owners community, that you’ve had a few nightmares experience from what you call the fly-by-night agencies.

Is there a story that comes to mind that you’d like to share? Or what advice could you give to other agencies to avoid a similar fate and to that effect? Can you expand on fly-by-night agencies?

Vincent: [00:14:51] Yeah. Let me start with what small businesses can do to avoid the situation. And I admit off the bat that this is a little hypocritical because we all start somewhere. Right. But one good indicator of an agency is their, their length of being in business. You know, there are some great agencies that are starting today? There are people out there who are fantastic, skilled, and know what they’re doing and they have one. But, but take that into account online reviews and experience level before you engage with an agency. And the reason I say that is we, all the time we see clients come to us that have nightmares an agency owner that is a single owner and can’t or doesn’t respond to content updates.

And the business owner has no access to their website agencies that let domain names expire agencies that are legitimate scams. I’m not going to say their names. Cause I don’t remember exactly what their name is, but I had a client come to me last year and this company built them a website really cheap and then said now you have to pay us like $50,000 a year or something for any support.

And then when they tried to transfer the, they wouldn’t give them their domain name, even if they paid. Like, he was like, I’ll pay you all the fees you’re asking for, just give me my domain. They said, no, it’s ours now. So it happens all the time and it’s because, in my opinion, it’s because the there’s a really low barrier to entry.

Right. If I have a laptop and I know how to make something look pretty. I can put up a website and say, I’m an expert. And it’s hard to sift through that and figure out who really has the expertise and who’s trustworthy and who knows how to run a business. So it’s something that I’m really passionate about because every, it seems like, you know, one out of every three clients that come to us is coming to us because they had this terrible experience somewhere, either with a friend who said that he can do it, or you know, an agency owner who just quit their full-time job and started this agency a week ago. And it’s, to me, it’s, it’s important that businesses don’t lose that time and money. So I’ll end my rant there. But I will say, you know, there are going to be some great agencies.

I think I was doing really good work my first year of business, but I think it’s harder to sift through agencies who are, who don’t have that experience, that reputation yet.

Morayo: [00:16:51] Absolutely. And I think, you know, this is a great place to plug our digital agency owners community for this very reason. If you’re listening to this podcast and you are about to launch into a new agency for yourself as a solopreneur, Sign up to join. You have the the advantage of talking to agency veteran agency owners, like Vince, and, and several others who can give you insight and feedback that will help you avoid those horror stories and being scammed or just wasting time and money on the path that might not serve you and your agency well. Avoid those types of events.

But there are some success stories too. And one of them, one of my favorite stories is one that I learned about when I joined GoWP a little over a year ago, Vince was one of the first of our partners who I had the pleasure of working with, and to extend that pleasure, I got the chance to talk to his clients and hear the solutions that Distinct provides for them and how much they love and respect the work that you and your team do.

But the story that I briefly wanted to share was the story of Mitch Meyers at Meyer’s market in Greencastle from I interviewed Mitch and learned that you know, food and, and meats and the, it, it was when he pursued in college, it was a passion of his and so he went into business and his product was so good. The public wanted more and more access to his fresh foods and he delivered, and this was all before the pandemic Vince you suggested that he go, you know, utilize some of the digital resources that you could provide your team could help provide him and taking his menu online.

And I’m telling you that your story of your success, that maybe I should let you, you were there

Vincent: [00:18:55] Sure. Sure. Yeah, no, you’ve, you’ve nailed it so far. So yeah, it was about a year or two before the pandemic. Mitch started getting phone calls based on, we launched this new website and quickly start getting phone calls to ship products to places around the country. And, you know, he, he shared that with me.

So can we automate this somehow? I said, yeah, you know, we can build e-commerce. And now you know, as long as they save you a long story, we’ve really focused on providing one specific product called the happy salt ships, you want a happy salt where he is the number one ranked company on Google. If you search for happy, salt Shipshewana happy salt to ship that all over the country.

And he’s, he’s, you know, he’s providing other like Indiana local goods Indiana themed boxes for the holidays. But just through some organic SEO from our initial website launch and then building out the e-commerce, he’s opened up a huge new line of revenue. Really based off this happy accident that no one would ship happy, sold anywhere.

Morayo: [00:19:49] Right. And then, so when the, you know, when the pandemic did befall us all, they were in a great position when other restaurants were having to weren’t ready to adapt immediately and had to either you know, shut down. Or as they converted to greater takeout demands, they were ready. They had because of, because of your suggestion his business was really in a good place.

I just think that story was awesome. And thank you for you made it sound so much more. Well, we automated and we incorporated some e-commerce Morayo, that’s what we did. I’m like, well, they sold sandwiches online and the customers could order them online. You look, we took different paths fence, but we arrived at the same

Vincent: [00:20:31] We arrived at the same place. and you still have to come visit Meyer’s market so we can eat a sandwich.

Morayo: [00:20:36] I know, I know you’re not far from me at all. Well,

Vincent: [00:20:39] I know.

Morayo: [00:20:40] Let’s check with Xavier. When Xavier says, you know, he won’t give you the time to eat it, to break bread with me, I’m there.

Vincent: [00:20:47] That’s fair. Maybe in the summer, we eat outside. Be safe.

Morayo: [00:20:50] Yes. Yes.

Joanne: [00:20:51] As someone who’s never been to the Midwest. I’m sorry. I just feel so what sandwiches are we talking about? I’m currently watching Ozark so I feel like I know a little bit about the Midwest

Vincent: [00:21:02] No, no, no. Stop that stop. Stop that. No, no, no.

Joanne: [00:21:07] No, no, no, no. But seriously, in all seriousness of, what sandwiches are we talking about? I’m a big sandwich fan.

Vincent: [00:21:15] Yeah. So these are deli sandwiches?

Fresh cut. Really good.

Morayo: [00:21:21] And actually this was one of the first case study events for our listeners. Vince worked with GoWP to develop case studies for four, I ultimately did for four of your clients. And you can go to his website to view the case studies that we created with his clients, and there are some really delectable images included. I don’t know if it can be delectable, but anyway, Joanna.

Joanne: [00:21:45] Yum.

Morayo: [00:21:46] Which is, it looks amazing. I would. 

Joanne: [00:21:50] That sounds really nice. Something that a word that is often overused to describe the professional values of a business is passion. Passion for the community, passion for my job. A lot of people overuse passion, but you have Distinct the Distinct team, however, do more than use the word passion. You show how passionate you are in terms of your commitment to small businesses and the local communities that support them. You save that it’s your responsibility to support small businesses against corporations. Where does that drive to look out for the smaller guys and ladies and, and, and businesses come from?

Vincent: [00:22:31] Yeah. So I think it comes from a few places. You know, growing up, my mom owned a small business and did various entrepreneurial things. And then as you know, as an adult, after graduation coming back here to Greencastle the small business community really supported me in my growth. And that’s when I started to learn that, you know, a majority of the benefits to a community come from small business and local commerce you know, a lot more.

If I spend locally on a local business, a lot more of that money stays in the community. Small businesses are more likely to give to nonprofits and philanthropy in the community. I’m a member of an organization here in our community called 100 plus men. And a lot of our members are small business owners.

And what we do is each year we all throw $500 into a pot and we collectively select four non-profits locally to, to receive a 10 to $12,000 each. And we do it socially. We have fun doing it, but you know, that those are kinds of things that happen when you’re a small business or even a local franchise owner. I try not to exclude them but primarily small businesses are my passion because they do really generate communities and small communities, in particular, it can be devastated when a corporation leaves the small businesses stay and they invest back in the community. So to me, large corporations have such an unfair advantage right now because small business owners aren’t experts in these things.

They’re not experts in web design. They might not be experts in analytics and running reports and balancing their finances even. So it’s all things that we try to support and materials that we create to help small businesses be successful and compete against the big retailers that don’t necessarily care as much about our communities.

Joanne: [00:24:08] Yeah, and it’s also important to know that business owners’ focus is to grow their business. And it’s just like everything we’ve done together so beautifully. Like what we do to help agencies is essentially the same. We want to help agencies grow by providing these services.

And it’s so interesting to me, to see the chain reaction essentially how one helps the other and the other becomes better and we all essentially become better. So can you speak a little bit on the value of businesses being visible supporters of their local community, as you were speaking about these local communities against these big retailers that don’t necessarily have a focus on local community?

Vincent: [00:24:55] Yeah, I think advocating for each other is really important. And what drives the success? Like you said, that kind of chain reaction, right? My skillsets tend to be behind a computer and can really work well with, you know, partnering with services, and bringing new things to this community that might not be offered locally or things that people aren’t thinking about locally.

So, you know, and, and on the flip side, you know, my let’s just use my accountant as an example. Who’s a local accountant who, who has a lot of value to my business, which then allows me to add more value to other businesses and to work with you all and to know what my budget is. So yeah, I think, you know, the ecosystem is super important because it allows everyone to support each other, and then it allows us to advocate for our community even more.

Morayo: [00:25:38] I think the way that you describe community and your involvement and the importance of everyone to be involved. I love that. And now that you have a child. And you think about his future and the community that he will grow up in, in Greencastle, is there one, you know, he’ll see his dad being involved.

Is there one lesson or characteristic of community that you hope he really absorbs as he grows up in Greencastle and, and takes with him into his own adulthood and his own career path? What do you hope that your community teaches him?

Vincent: [00:26:18] That’s great. I should’ve prepared more for this one.

Morayo: [00:26:20] I threw that on you. I’m sorry.

Vincent: [00:26:22] No, it’s all right. It’s all right. To me, it’s understanding the community is what you make of it and that it can mean different things. You know, one thing that I love about living here that I couldn’t get in Chicago and you know, I think it’s very unique to this specific community is the sense that everyone cares.

I can’t go out without someone seeing me who I know and they ask me genuinely how things are going. How’s Xavier, you know, how’s work, you know, whether I go meet at Meyer’s market, or I go to one of my restaurant clients, or I go somewhere that’s not even a client, but you know, people just know each other here and they care you know, the term, it takes a village or the saying, it takes a village.

Like this is truly a village of people who Are the community, but we have also also have other communities, right? When I go home to Chicago, like my family, there is a community. You know, my friends here, my friends globally are community. So I think if I to kind of get back to your point, if he can Kind of take one thing about this community or about communities in general and understand that’s just, it is what you make of it, and as long as you’re open and you love, and you come with an open mind like you can form communities anywhere and genuinely be passionate about a community.

Morayo: [00:27:33] Yeah, yeah. Being surrounded by, be it family members or individuals in the community who are invested in seeing your success, I think that’s in health, I think is a tremendous attribute of community.

Vincent: [00:27:45] Absolutely.

Joanne: [00:27:46] Yeah, absolutely and you also mentioned a global community. And you know that your friends are a global community. Does this have anything to do with your gaming? Because you’re, I know you’re also a gamer and I don’t game, but I also have a community of friends who we are community, you know, we’re everywhere in the world and it’s either the group chat or we have community on slack.

Maybe some people might not appreciate the sense of community created among gamers or the cognitive benefits of gaming. But you’re, you know, you’re a fan and a player of X-Box halo five to be specific, and CBS actually did a report on the gaming’s positive impact on the brain’s ability to make better predictions and strategize.

So for us non-gamers Morayo and I can you briefly describe the plot of the goal of halo five?

Vincent: [00:28:42] Yeah. Yeah. So the most recent Halo’s halo infinite and that’s the one I’ve been playing the most? No, it’s okay. It’s okay.

Joanne: [00:28:47] Whoops.

That we’re non-gamers right.

Vincent: [00:28:52] Halo, in general, is you play as a character named Master Chief and he’s a Super Soldier and He and there’s books. There’s all kinds of, I only have a very like basic level.

I just kind of liked the game, but I know what’s going on. But so he is tasked with fighting these aliens various I don’t know if they’re races or various types of aliens. And they kind of all compete and it’s his task to kind of save humanity. There’s one group that just is a scorch of basically zombies trying to destroy everything.

And there’s another group that’s a little misguided and kind of has this like religious extremism. And then there’s the humans and master chief just trying to like, make sure everyone settles down and like doesn’t destroy the universe. So yeah, but you know, the report, the CBS report you’re mentioning, I’ve never taken the time to do the actual research.

But I know for a fact in my life that gaming has shaped my ability to make decisions, to think analytically, to my reaction, and my reaction time on things. Like I know that that has been a big impact. And I’ve noticed recently with growing my team that I work really well with gamers because we think similarly and we have the same problem solving and the the same interest and kind of diving into things and figuring them out. So I love that you pulled that statistic and I believe it with like every being of my heart.

Joanne: [00:30:08] And can you give us like an example of like, of that mental framework that you’re speaking of, just for all of us visual people, maybe an example in where you were working with a colleague of yours or a member of your team who was a gamer and like just a small example of something that will represent.

Vincent: [00:30:31] Yeah,

So I tend to see that those who I work with who are gamers have no problem figuring things out and tinkering with them. So if I say here’s a tool we’re going to use dive in a gamer, looks at it like, okay, let’s explore, let’s click around. Oops. I broke something. Let’s fix it. I’m like learning from my mistakes and kind of going with the flow.

And you know, obviously, this isn’t polarizing, right? Not every gamer can do that. And not every nongamer can’t do that, but people who are less interested in gaming I’ve noticed are more cautious, right? Like, okay, maybe I should read about this first. Maybe I need more guidance, things like that because you know, gaming really rewards you for trial and error, right?

If you’re playing a game and you fail, you’ll see you’ll get used to that mindset of like, oh, what’s the worst that can happen. I can just kind of jump back in. You know, oh, I, I learned from that mistake. So that’s the thing I see the most often. One that’s a little less applicable for like professional life is I really feel that I’m able to learn spaces really well because if you like gaming, you have to learn the maps, you have to learn and understand your surrounding. So, you know, if I drive somewhere one time like I can do that again now. Like I know how to drive there again, whereas I know some people who they can drive the same place a hundred times that have no idea where they are, what direction they’re facing.

So I believe it, maybe that’s why maybe it was a natural instinct and that’s why I like gaming, but I think gaming has helped me just understand surroundings.

Morayo: [00:31:48] I would like to remind you, Vince, that this podcast will last forever. So young Xavier, in about seven, eight years, we’ll use this as his roadmap to get out of doing homework and saying, you know, dad, you’ve already shown the way. I’m learning to delay my gratification. I’m learning by trial and error by gaming instead of doing my history, homework, or something.

Vincent: [00:32:13] I think there needs to be a balance. Whoa. He could hold me to it. There needs to be a balance. There is learning to be had and there’s educational gaming tools too, you know, we can do some, some online gamification.

Morayo: [00:32:26] And something, something I heard you say about halo five and building your teams and accomplishing your mission. I know a lot of business owners have that same challenge, not halo five with their team members, but putting together the right team to achieve their mission. 

As someone who has been, you’ve been in the business like over ten years, well, over a decade. Do you have any tips and advice for those people who are thinking of expanding their business teams or how do they go about assembling the right people with the right skillset?

Vincent: [00:33:01] Yeah. So that’s something I’ve been learning and I’m still learning. We’ve used a lot of services, we’ve used different types of employees, we’ve had a lot of different resources and we’re continuing to learn. The single biggest advice I can give and, and the one thing I think I’m most qualified, I guess to advise on is something that isn’t unique to me, but it’s a book and the book is called traction.

You can actually see that I think it’s that one traction gives you a framework for managing a small business and keeping yourself and everyone on your team accountable, and also making sure you have the right people in the right positions doing the right work. Finding that book last year has really changed the way I look at things.

And if you would’ve told me, my team would be this productive right now, I would have never believed you a year ago because I didn’t have the skill sets and those tools, and now we’re really churning really high-quality work at a good rate. And I really have to say it was the book that helped.

Morayo: [00:33:54] Awesome. Another guest recommended that book as well. I guess I got put in on my wheel stone.

Vincent: [00:33:58] It’s fantastic.

Morayo: [00:34:00] As you look to the future, what are you looking forward to accomplishing in this next year? You said you, you’ve knocked it out of the park last year with Distinct. What are you and your team looking forward to in the coming year?

Vincent: [00:34:15] Yeah. So this year? we’re really focusing on local growth. So we’re going to hire some local employees. To this point, it’s been mostly contractors and third-party services and we’re gonna really focus on growing our, our team, our employed team locally. And then we’re hoping to just really start branching out and reaching more more new businesses. We’re starting some online communities and a YouTube channel. Do you guys mind if I plug, can I plug?

Morayo: [00:34:37] Absolutely plug away.

Vincent: [00:34:38] Yeah, so we have a Facebook group called the small business squad and we’re really hoping that’s a place for small businesses to connect, collaborate, support each other even if you don’t own a small business, if you just like small businesses, we want people to be there, and we’ve kind of, we’ve added the YouTube channel and a podcast with the same title of small business squad. So that’s like my big push is to build more community within our clients and within similar businesses while also growing our team and continuing to work with.

Morayo: [00:35:04] That’s awesome. Awesome. Awesome. Good

Vincent: [00:35:06] Thank you.

Joanne: [00:35:07] Awesome, and thank you so much for all of your great insights and for plugging your new venture onto a community. That’s so exciting. We’re so excited. We’re super big community people. I don’t know if you’ve heard. Just to close things out, last question we want to ask you is how do you create happiness for yourself?

Vincent: [00:35:28] It depends on the day. Really. Family time is a big indicator and it really helps me. It makes me happy. Running, running can really help me decompress unless it’s as cold as it’s been the last couple of weeks. Obviously video games, we’ve talked about that and food. I love food. I love small honed wall restaurants and supporting them. They always have the best food. So I think those are my four happy places.

Morayo: [00:35:50] So you see, Joanne sounds like you’re coming to the Midwest and you’re eating locally.

Vincent: [00:35:55] Oh, yeah,

Joanne: [00:35:55] I can’t wait. I really want to visit the Midwest and how you paint it. It tells, sounds beautiful when it’s not cold

Vincent: [00:36:03] Exactly.

Morayo: [00:36:05] We’ll see you in six months then

Vincent: [00:36:06] Yeah,

Joanne: [00:36:07] It’s in the spring. See you in the spring

Vincent: [00:36:08] When I woke up this morning, it felt like negative 20 outside, I think.

Morayo: [00:36:13] We have negative four today here in Chicago, but Hey, I love it

Vincent: [00:36:18] Yeah, it’s warming up already, but

Morayo: [00:36:21] The sun’s out, you know, fleece-lined tights. It’s all good.

Vincent: [00:36:24] Yeah.

Morayo: [00:36:26] That’s an excellent conversation, Vince. And thank you so much for chatting with us today. You can read for our listeners, you can read more about Vince and Distinct services at becomeDistinct.com.

Joanne: [00:36:37] And yes. Thank you so much to everyone for joining us today. Don’t forget to like and subscribe and to get your podcasts this episode, anywhere you get your podcasts. So this episode of the digital agency owners podcast will be on our website on gowp.com/podcast, and anywhere else, everywhere else. And just a quick reminder, at GoWP, we want to help you become more profitable, whether it’s by listening to our super-valuable podcasts like this one today, or joining in our weekly happiness hours, viewing informative webinars, hosted by our friends and members of our WordPress community.

And of course, by growing your team with our skilled developers, copywriters, designers, or project managers, go to gowp.com to read more about our services and to schedule a call.

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