In this episode of the Aww Shift Podcast, our host Anthony Trucks talks with Nick Bradley. He is a renowned entrepreneur, investor, author, speaker, and business growth expert. He is also the host of the Scale Up Your Business Podcast, which is #1 in the UK Podcast Charts. He has built, bought, and sold 22 businesses with a combined valuation of over $5 Billion. His mission is to help entrepreneurs and is committed to fostering entrepreneurship and building empires as a global force for good.
Why should we listen to you?
I’ve gone through a journey that started when I was young. I’ve gone through various challenges, and I’ve transformed my life in different ways. And I think the main thing that I like to help people with is that anything you want to achieve is possible if you have the mindset to do it.
I feel my mission in life is to help people achieve what they feel they can’t at that point in time. If I look back on all the things that I’ve done that have given me the most fulfillment and enrichment, it’s always been where I’ve helped someone find their identity and help them transform. That’s my mission now, and that’s what I’m doing through my podcasts and through everything else.
The Food Problem
When I was younger, I was having a whole heap of just uncertainty and instability at a young age. At that age, I sort of went to food and overeating, and as a 10-year old, I was weighing 75 kilos.
Becoming a better version of himself
The person who brought me up was my grandfather. He was a really gritty guy, and I learned self-discipline from him. And from the age of 10 to 16, I lost all the weight and ended up competing in sports. And I found a version of myself through that transformation, which gave me a huge amount of self-belief. I thought that it was impossible to overcome what I was going through.
I managed to pull myself through it. And I can’t tell how much I felt at that stage after doing that because it set me the foundations for everything I did.
My grandfather was there, but he wasn’t necessarily guiding me with all the principles. I had to go and educate myself.
I think a lot of the decisions that we make come from a period of pain. When you get to that level of despair, you’re forced to take action in whatever way. And so I got some guidance. But to be frank, I taught myself and started educating myself. I started getting up early and exercising, working out, and eating properly. Then I started to see the change.
How can you tell when somebody didn’t play sports growing up?
I can tell by their mindset. There are lots of different things you learn through sport. It’s, it’s the purity of it where there’s winning, losing, teamwork, there are all the different things, but I can tell.
Transitioning to the Corporate world
I started this gym business in Adelaide in the early 90s. It was pretty successful, and I did that for three years. Then I just gave it up. I got stuck in my past programming, and I had many people around me questioning the choice that I’ve made to be entrepreneurial where everyone said that it was gonna fail and I need to get a job.
I decided to just get out of Adelaide to change my environment. Partly was the fear of entrepreneurship failing for me and my need to get somewhere else where I needed to be surrounded by different people. So I left, and I put myself into another environment. I then went into the world of corporate, and the world of corporate lasted for 15 years.
I rose up the ranks super quick, where I ended up being the marketing director of a large company. I was the CEO of one of the divisions of the business before I was 35. But I was relentless. I would rip people apart to get promoted and get the next pay rise—anything I could do to progress and be seen as significant in all that sort of stuff.
Decompressing through Running
I was not the person I wanted to be where I wasn’t showing up at home. Everything was starting to culminate, and I was doing these extreme 100-mile races.
It wasn’t about feeling amazing. It was full decompression. It was putting me through a level of pain. I needed to mask what I was going through internally with something else because I had all that I wanted, but I was just dying inside.
The Moment where Everything Changed
I started to get a lesson, and I started to see a window into myself. I was a frustrated entrepreneur in my 15 years in the corporate space, and I was repressing that sort of nature.
I just knew that I wasn’t happy. I had this point where you have this question that just keeps popping into your head all the time. And the question was, Are you happy? I knew the answer, and I didn’t know what to do.
I went to a Tony Robbins event and got myself immersed in that. I just gave myself the time to be frank, and I made a decision that I was going to come back, and I was gonna change everything.
I didn’t quit my job straight away, but I made a decision to do that. I spent the next 12 months effectively building the foundation, and one of those foundational pieces is my amazing podcast.
The Unexpected Angel
When I look at them now and how they serve us, it’s almost like, in a weird way, my father was an angel coming in to give me a message at a time when I desperately needed it. As soon as I heard the message, in the way that it was delivered, he left.
What is it that frustrates you?
These days, I’m working with people who have businesses where they’re stuck and overwhelmed. I’m seeing them at a place where they’re not their best. What frustrates me is the idea that things happen and, and you have no power, to do things differently. We all got choices. They may not be the best choices, and they may not be the ones that we want to be, but we have them.
Skillset vs. Mindset
People ask me all the time in business about what’s more important. Is it skillset or mindset? And I say it’s 80% mindset. It’s not that people don’t know what to do. They just get consumed in their own psychology all the time.
The Idea of Slowing Down
People want to get to the end game. They want to set goals, but sometimes the whole idea of slowing down is to speed up. It’s such a powerful thing to consider and to do. Once you start to do that, the opportunities become more visible because you’re more focused and more present.
What making an impact is all about
It’s about making a difference to people and making a more significant contribution. If I had to draw a line under that corporate and private equity side, I was extremely self-centered, and everything was about me.
The reason my podcast has been successful is that I bear everything in that. It’s a business podcast about the person you need to become to create an outstanding business. But at the end of that, it’s about the pathway to freedom.
What promise did God make to the world when He created you?
That I can be an inspiration to people in the way that I choose to show up.
What you’re here to do is inspire people and believe that they can be more than they can. And if I think about my mission and my purpose, and what I’ve certainly realized over the last few years, is I’ve made that final transition where I am now massively congruent with that. And everything I do every day is congruent with that.
Finding your purpose
You can chase your passion, climb the crazy mountains, fall in the hills, but you’ll stumble in it at some point. I’ll present itself if you’ve earned the right to see it.
I had to get to the bottom to realize that there was something more. And I had to work to find bits of it. But it started to come together, and then when it did, it was super clear.
[6:41-6:45] “Anything that you want to achieve is possible if you have the mindset to do it.”
[25:10-25:16] “We all got choices. They may not be the best choices, and they may not be the ones that we want to be, but we have them.”
[26:05-26:09] “It’s not what you know, but it’s who you are with what you know.”
Learn more about Nick Bradley and his Podcast, “Scale Up Your Business” at:
Apple Podcasts: https://podcasts.apple.com/gb/podcast/scale-up-your-business-podcast/id1453523566