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Jeff Badu is an entrepreneur and a wealth multiplier. He is a licensed Certified Public Accountant and the founder and CEO of Badu Enterprises, LLC, which is a multinational conglomerate that owns several key companies. Jeff was born & raised in Ghana, Africa, and had the opportunity to emigrate to the United States at the age of 8. As a young immigrant, he faced several tough moments. Getting used to a completely new environment is not easy, as well as finding like-minded people to surround yourself with, especially if you live in Uptown Chicago.
During those difficult times, at the age of 16, Jeff took a trip back to Ghana that gave him a new perspective on life. He saw how many people were struggling, and he realized how lucky he was to have had the opportunity to move to the US. From that moment, he turned everything around, started doing great at school, and decided that his goal in life would have been to inspire and support the super hungry to take hold of infinite resources in order to create an abundant lifestyle.
The Entrepreneurial Spirit
Jeff’s parents are both entrepreneurs, which is something you have to do if you want to start making money in Ghana, as finding a job there is very difficult. Inspired by his parents, Jeff always had an entrepreneurial spirit. In Ghana as a 5-year-old, Jeff Badu would sell the chocolates and candies he was given on the streets of Accra, and he used the same entrepreneurial mindset during his freshman year at the University of Illinois.
He started his first business plan as an 18-year-old and formed a client base by volunteering to do taxes for family and friends. When he hit his 100th client, Badu quit his full-time corporate job to officially start Badu Tax Services, LLC in September 2016.
And now here’s Jeff Badu.
Full transcript below
Video on The Wealth Multiplier for the Super Hungry
Video From Jeff Badu on How to Lower Your Property Taxes
Visit JeffBadu.com to Learn More About His Services as a Wealth Multiplier
Badu Foundation, Inc is Jeff’s Financial Literacy Foundation
Check Out Jeff Badu’s Book: Infinite Expansion
Connect with Jeff on LinkedIn
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Podcast with Jeff Badu. The Wealth Multiplier for the Super Hungry.
people, business, ghana, jeff, entrepreneur, taxes, cpa, friends, financial literacy, life, uptown, enterprises, lottery, tax, resources, read, parallel, college, migrated, live
Jeff Badu, Mike Malatesta
Jeff Badu 00:00
Mike Malatesta 00:21
Hey everybody welcome back to the HOW TO HAPPEN podcast, I’m very grateful that you are here today and I’m glad that you listen, I’m glad that you subscribe, and I’m also glad that you share, and you are definitely going to want to listen and share this one because, like well, like you do all of them. Thank you. But today I’ve got Jeff Badu with me . And I first I should thank Justin Breen for connecting Jeff and I. Justin is sort of my master connection pal he everybody that he finds interesting he sends my way and that’s how Jeff and I got connected but let me tell you a little bit about Jeff So Jeff is a parallel entrepreneur and a wealth multiplier, and I’m gonna have to ask him what a parallel entrepreneur is because that’s the first time I’ve heard it. He’s a licensed certified public accountant and founder and CEO of Badu enterprises, LLC, which is a multi national conglomerate that owns multiple companies, and we’ll get into some of that I’m sure Jeff’s purpose is in life is to inspire and support a super hungry to take hold of infinite resources in order to create an abundant lifestyle. I love that. He’s extremely passionate about financial literacy, and currently hosts various financial literacy workshops throughout the country. He’s a public speaker and an author, and, and he lives in the Chicago area right. That is correct. Okay. Well, Jeff, I start every podcast with the same simple question and that is how did happen for you.
Jeff Badu 02:10
Yeah so, I mean what that definitely appreciate you for having me my. I think it’s critical to go to the story. And that, for me I was born or raised in Ghana, which is on the west side of Africa. And I came to the United States when I was eight years old, actually came with my older sister who was 16 at the time. And my parents are already here. So, basically we migrated to the US after my parents. And, unfortunately, we were put into a neighborhood called uptown in Chicago. For those who don’t know and uptown is where it is. It wasn’t the best place to put a child, let’s just say, especially one who just came to America. Now, no fault of anybody, because you don’t know what you don’t know. However, what happened was that, you know, there were times in my life where it was very very tough. So during those years between eight through 16. It was extremely tough because I had to get used to a new environment. Find friends that were like minded, and unfortunately, the type of folks that I was hanging around with were people who you wouldn’t necessarily want your child to be around. Alright, so it was a very, very tough time, I learned a ton. I learned a lot. You are the experiences that you go through in life, but at the age of 16 I was able to turn things around. That’s when I discovered my purpose in life which is to inspire and support the super hungry to take on infinite resources in order to create an abundant lifestyle. How did I come about that. Well, at the age of 16 I took a trip back to Ghana, where I saw struggle, firsthand, for example, I saw a lady that had two babies wrapped around her back, not one but two, wrapped around her back and had a huge load of apples, oranges, right, whatever it took to make ends meet, whatever it took the theater family and I said you know what I’m meant to help that individual, I’m meant to be a part of the solution not the problem. And so that’s what I took upon myself I said, I need to work hard. I’ve been given this opportunity to come to America, why could I throw it all away. Just because I was down on the wrong path. You know why not turn things around and actually help people actually help people when it comes to their finances or financial literacy. And so, ever since that day when I saw that lady, I’d said you know what I need to work harder, first of all I need to work smarter. I need to be around more like minded people going towards the path that I want to go on in life. And I also went stronger in my faith. So my faith, my spiritual life got a lot stronger, because I was able to connect emotionally, and spiritually. You know, and so with that being turned around, grades got better. I was surrounded myself with more like minded people. I was attended church, you know, the youth leader in my church, and that’s what also led me down the journey of being an accountant or a CPA.
Mike Malatesta 05:15
So, let’s talk about, let’s talk about you coming here first. Jeff, because you’re, you said your parents came first. So, tell, tell me how the logistics of this went.
Jeff Badu 05:27
Yeah, so basically, my dad came here he was actually known to be the first person in my family to migrate to America or to the state actually went to the UK first. So you want to immigration lottery, went to the UK, and then he was, He went back to Ghana to reapply for immigration law, there’s more opportunities in American in the United States of America. And so when he did that he was able to get accepted to connections and everything like that came to America, where for a few years, send some money back to get my mom. My mom migrated to the US as well. So actually, between the age of three, and eight I didn’t actually live with my mom because she was already there in the US, and she was, you know, working and getting opportunities providing for the family and everything like that. from time to time, but I can live my heart when I was about three years old or so. And with that, what happened was that once we hit eight, then we won, myself, my older sister one immigration lottery as well, since we already had family in the US. So now we have a stronger case. And so, ultimately we’re able to migrate to the US, as well. Due to the fact that my parents were already there, or hearing something, and it was yeah it was a great journey I mean, every guardians dream, like a reality, is to come to a place like the US, get more opportunities, more, you know, more education, more resources, infinite resources that’s a big thing for me. And we were able to you know get those into the resources by coming to America. And so that’s how the journey went as far as coming to America.
Mike Malatesta 07:14
Okay, and most people listening probably won’t have an understanding of the lottery process so, so I’m assuming that you enter a process, you pick the destination that you want to go to and then it’s kind of, is it really a lottery where you’re just chosen randomly or is there more to it.
Jeff Badu 07:36
I mean, you literally take from a hat, basically. Oh, but you can put your name and multiple times so you can apply under a different name different date of birth, you know, that sort of thing. But there’s a whole mess when it comes to that world. But overall, when it comes to the lottery system. It’s like truly like you’re playing the wires, there are higher odds of winning, right, but back then, when there wasn’t as many immigration lottery tickets that couldn’t be approved back then. It was much harder to get into the US. And so, you know, my dad was very very fortunate, very lucky to be able to get into the US. And then we trickle that down to the rest of the family, and we came in as well.
Mike Malatesta 08:17
And you, it sounds like you all have to enter the lottery independently, even though you’re a family so you can’t just put in one ticket for your family and exactly how was it, how did it feel for you and your sister when your parents are gone for your dad, more than your mom but your mind you said five years between when your mom left and came back. Did you think you did you know she You said she came back but Did you think you’d ever have a chance to reconnect in the US are you optimistic or were you sad or did it not matter where you just sort of,
Jeff Badu 08:49
I doubt I didn’t know what was I don’t know why but my mom I didn’t know where my dad was. I knew, I mean I did tell him he started saying like hey we’re doing this for a reason, will eventually grow up to the US, and my dad visited pretty frequently. Things came about at least four times a year. Oh okay, okay, yeah, so he did there’s a very frequently, my aunt also took great care of me. There’s a long story there but my sister and I actually didn’t live together and she was living in a city called Mambo, which is one of the, you know it’s not the main city so I was living in a main city which is a crock. And she was living, where she was born, which was manconi Venice, Italy and Mambo is home to the village that I was born, which is called Assam. And with that, so my sister and I, we never really know each other actually. It’s kind of a weird story but we never really knew each other. After a certain point in time, like to the point where she came to a crime to live with us for a few, a few days or a few months before we went to the US. I was like man who is his first developer,
Mike Malatesta 10:01
well plus she was 11 when you were three right so when your mom left she was 11, you were three. Yeah, okay.
Jeff Badu 10:08
Yeah, so we were to get to know the world was going on, but now it all makes sense why they were doing it, I think that’s the most important part.
Mike Malatesta 10:16
Yeah, okay. And so you, you get here and you say you lived, you live in uptown. So what, what were your parents doing for work or why, how did they, How did they come to settle there.
Jeff Badu 10:35
I bet they came up down because they had friends that live there. So you know when you first come to America, you don’t know anything, right, are the people that you, that came before you. So some of them, some of those folks were living uptown, you know, now is the older generation. So they didn’t really know what was going on with the younger generation. And so yeah they settled on our challenges because they have friends, colleagues, you know, good referrals, that sort of
Mike Malatesta 11:04
got it and so your dad came to Chicago, right away. And when it came to the US. Okay. And, you know, you described, Uptown as not being the greatest place how much different was it than where you grew up in Ghana, or at your aunt’s place or
Jeff Badu 11:25
I mean yeah it’s a completely different environment, Uptown was at the time it was just surrounded by violence for one. Yeah, it was surrounded by just a lot of rival, you know, just a lot of negative stuff that was going on in that at that time, you know uptown has been done a lot better, way way better. But, you know, comparing Ganon, living to uptown at the time, Donald is more likely to say, people got along a lot more. Yeah. When uptown they didn’t get a quite a lot, you know, quite as long.
Mike Malatesta 12:04
Fair enough. And how did, how were you how were you and your family sort of welcomed into the Uptown neighborhood was it just like fighting I always wonder about immigrants, you know how, you know what, because people are, you know, wherever you go, People have these sort of natural belief systems or whatever and a lot of times when people come from somewhere else they treat them like strangers because they don’t understand they’re just people like everybody else. So I’m wondering what it was like,
Jeff Badu 12:33
I mean, to be honest I don’t remember too much about that side as far as a welcoming to me my friend, my mom had already had friends and colleagues that were there. And I actually became friends with third kid. I mean it was welcoming, from what I experienced from what I witnessed, I was able to get, you know, some friends, and ultimately, we became pretty close. We started hanging out together, you know, we, we basically were looking out for each other. And so, as far as the welcoming fees of someone who just came to America, I thought it was very welcoming.
Mike Malatesta 13:16
And you mentioned that, I think you said you were 16 when you went back to Ghana and saw the woman that you described and that sort of changed your mindset, if that’s fair to say is that right.
Jeff Badu 13:27
Yeah, I’d say the entire trajectory of my life. It changed everything. It changed my mind and changed my spiritual life got more connected with my spiritual father. And it also just made me more like it humbled me basically. Because when you mean given something, you truly don’t know what you have until you either lose it, or you’re about to lose it, or you feel like you’re about to lose. So being given an opportunity to come to America. Thankfully, it wasn’t taken away from you, but I felt like I was on the verge of being taken away from me because my parents could have easily said I will send you right back to Ghana, you’re gonna live there and so you learned a lesson, whatever it is. And so required for my parents, they really know exactly what was going on in my life, you know, during certain times of the day, they knew some of the friends I was hanging around with and they had already, already had some red flags as to those individuals. One of those folks actually went back to guns, because he was sent back the gun. Okay,
Mike Malatesta 14:27
so he, what happened to him is what you feared might happen. Okay, yeah,
Jeff Badu 14:31
exactly, but he came back and he completely changed his life. I mean, this guy walks around with the Bible in his hand all the time you know he, he’s very very spiritual, when it comes to certain things. But, you know, overall, like, just, just that environment. I definitely felt like they were gonna send me back to Ghana just because they they haven’t may have heard, but if they really knew, deeply, some of the things that were going on they probably would have sent me back to them.
Mike Malatesta 15:00
Right. Have you told them.
Jeff Badu 15:04
Yeah, so they do no part I mean, they know most of the story. So because, you know, they, they basically read the news and everything like that. And I would say that they, in the sense they are proud. But there’s another side that, you know, a sense of guilt, my Why didn’t I do like maybe they felt like they could have done better with me. But at the same time it’s like, you go to different experiences in life to become who you are today, and become a better person. So had I not gone through those experiences, I might not even own a business, right now, right, I may have not been going to church, because I would know what it feels like to lose your spiritual life. And then, you know, gain it back. So I feel like sometimes the point is, sometimes you don’t know what you truly have until you lose it, or so to attain certain experiences in life, to get you to where you really want to be in life, without going through those experiences. The journey, first of all, isn’t it’s fine. And second of all it really is meaningful because you don’t know what it feels like to not have, you know I wake up every day today. As if I don’t have anything like that, I completely haven’t worked a day in my life. That’s how I wake up every single morning and say I need to go grind, because what happened before, when I was 16 can happen again.
Mike Malatesta 16:29
Okay, so you, you go back to God and you see this woman you come back. So changes you changes everything changes everything you say. What do you do when you come back Jeff because you’ve got. Well, you can’t probably can’t hang out with the same thing. Or, you know, I’m sure there’s a bunch of different things. So I’m wondering as a 16 year old is there a lot of hard. Even if you want to turn around there’s a lot of inertia probably trying to keep you where you are. So I’m wondering specifically what you did, how you manage your way through it.
Jeff Badu 17:04
Yeah, great question. I turned to God. Honestly, I read half the Bible. I rarely when I came back, like, I remember it was that day that I, the flight just landed at night, I went back to school the next day. And after school I picked up a Bible, and I basically read, you know I read through it and then eventually, at the age of 16 I read half of the Bible. I immediately acquired a mentor, basically, who went to my mom’s church so I had been going to church every now and then. But that was at my mom’s church. And then all of a sudden they started seeing me there every day. So I wow, there’s some change, there’s some progress and growth. So this mentor actually ironically went through something similar as far as being around, you know, the friends and everything like that. And she just, she basically taught me everything she told me what to do during certain moments what not to do, because some of the friends that I was with back then, they were still like sort of lingering around them but until we complete this associated ourselves from each other. No, we might see each other on the street we might say, you know, shake hands, whatever it is, but you can tell there’s a disconnect, because my spiritual medic has activated now, and I actually have a profound purpose in life, I have something I want to do. So that’s exactly what happened right, I basically I studied harder in school. I got better grades because I spent more time in the books. I started learning more about accounting. In fact, I was on YouTube looking up videos on how to do taxes, or just in general, right about accounting learn about debits credits say that they chose okay I can get, I can get used to this stuff. So no more hanging out at night with friends drinking and smoking all that stuff. There was no more. There was more after school, let’s do our homework, study to pick up a book right now as the button is rated, let’s learn a thing or two about life.
Mike Malatesta 19:10
And then, okay so that’s a great path to be on I imagine that that it probably wasn’t easy all the time, because right people are, you know, you say I see him on the street I say hi or whatever but I know it’s a little different than that you know people want to bring you back in, they want to, or they want to make fun of you for choosing a different path or something so that takes a lot of strength so it sounds like this. This mentor you had, in addition to the Bible made a really big difference in keeping you on the right path and safe in your mind at least.
Jeff Badu 19:44
Yeah, exactly, exactly. And I felt like even physically I was protected right by my, my new friends my new circle of influence, because they’re like, this guy, he’s not only is he somebody we can help, but in some way that may even be able to help us. And it’s ironic, because now I’m the mentor of somebody that I used to mentor me a friend that used to mentor me in the past. I mentor him now. It’s more on a financial aspect but okay, you know, it’s still a still he’s trying to get things, you know, fully turned around. Just because he you know he kind of drifted just a little bit and now he’s basically getting back on path and I’m like, Hey, I’ve got to keep him on his toes, you know, make sure he, he’s doing good, because he helped me after the age of 60, right,
Mike Malatesta 20:35
and you’re still living in the same area. During this time and probably maybe till you go to college, is that
Jeff Badu 20:41
accurate or Yeah. Luckily it was only a two year journey where I was still in Uptown neighborhood, they’re going to uplift Community High School, because I was a junior when I came back. So started junior to the ACC, and then got into college university of Illinois Urbana Champaign. I was actually the first person at my high school after high school in the history of observe, to be accepted into you back into your lab by mistake, because I applied for the wrong program.
Mike Malatesta 21:15
What was that about what program did you want to apply to and which one did you
Jeff Badu 21:20
apply for the accounting program in the College of Business, but I applied for the agricultural accounting program College of Ag.
Jeff Badu 21:32
But it turned out to be a mistake, because I would not have been able to get into the college of business. You know with my AC t score and everything that was going on and upload. Let’s say we weren’t the most prominent school. Okay, so we didn’t have as many resources as some of the other prestigious high schools that were out there, but I was able to get in. And then I transferred into the College of Business. My sophomore year, through the connections due to relationships and everything that I’ve done so, gotcha, I was still in town for about 10 years and then I migrated to the US. And then I moved down in our parents home, and actually bought my home.
Mike Malatesta 22:12
While you were in school,
Jeff Badu 22:13
or so, when I graduated from college, I got the bachelors in 2014 Masters in 2015, and then I got my own apartment. I eventually bought my own condo. And, you know, still basically still making sure that I’m still close by the parents and everything like,
Mike Malatesta 22:34
okay, and when you were at you have I mean, when was that when was. Was it during that time or did it come after where you decided you were going to sort of create your own future, as, as an entrepreneur.
Jeff Badu 22:48
Yeah, I decided I wanted to be an entrepreneur at the age of five.
Mike Malatesta 22:51
Oh, you did. Okay, so your while you were still in Ghana okay so what were you. How did that manifest itself. What were you doing to explore that.
Jeff Badu 23:00
I mean, my family is, is built like with entrepreneurs, if you were to literally cut our risk. And we started bleeding, you noticed entrepreneurship lead not. Okay. What I mean we’re filled with entrepreneurs so much that I mean my mom is an entrepreneur, my dad is an entrepreneur. My older sister is an entrepreneur and my younger sister wants to be an entrepreneur everybody bases an entrepreneur in some way shape or form. And so, Ghana, is our culture is very very Hustle Hustle mentality. So meaning that you’ve got to go out and get it on your own, because you can’t rely on the government, you know, there is no such thing as government support in Ghana. You know there’s no, there’s no handouts, basically, you’ve got to really go out and get it on your own so every almost like probably about 70% of the adult population, entrepreneur, they own their own business, whether they’re selling stuff on the street, whether they’re manufacturing, you know their carpentry, whatever it is, they gotta go make ends meet. So growing up, I was what I was watching. You know, that’s all I knew. So I knew that I knew what it felt like, for I knew what it looked like that leads to become a business owner savvy on freedom come home whenever you want to have your own team and all that good stuff. By the age of five, anytime it’s my day we had candy bar, I wouldn’t eat it, I would tell the friends I was Does anybody. And so my hunger for life success my hunger for money grew really at the age of five, because I said that there’s no way I’m working for somebody. There’s no way that I’m letting somebody control my destiny. And that manifested, after college after the obi when I actually activated my business plan that I was working on 20 times, and I was a freshman you.
Mike Malatesta 24:58
Okay, so when you were a freshman at UVA you actually started assembling a business plan that does it, does does what you have now look anything like the business plan that you started with as a freshman,
Jeff Badu 25:11
sophomore, so. So first of all, I started the business plan, and by the tax services, CPA firm. And with that, I wanted to be a tax firm that I didn’t want to do taxes, right, just a freshman in college, literally know much about the tax fraud I did research and everything but I said I didn’t want to start doing taxes. And then I learned more about the industry. I read the industry report and it taught me and told me things that I can do to differentiate myself and going through business classes they taught me that you always have to have your competitive advantage. So throughout college, I was saying what is my competitive advantage and I said well, one will be a virtual CPA firm which we are right now, 100% virtual is the home office. And that was that too. We’re going to educate we’re going to over educate the community, we’re going to over educate our clients, so that their lives become easier. And when you make somebody else’s life easier. In turn, make your life easier as well. So with that, I just kept working on a business plan and kept working on a business plan, and then also started doing practice for friends and family. And anybody who I can get my hands on. I said I’ll do it for you for free. Right, I’ll do your tax free for free. I just want to get to experience get my feet wet, make sure this is something I really want to do. I’ll even pay for the software that I use. So I did that, till 2016. So 2020 times in 2014. That’s when I was in my bachelor undergrad, right, when I read to you by, I want a leadership program at PricewaterhouseCoopers PWC. My sophomore year. And then my junior and senior year, I would intern at PwC as an audit intern. I saw I was actually an auditor, and in 2015 and 2016. I was working full time as an audit associate, and as I moved up to become an experienced audit associate, but then on September 2 2016 I turned on my two week notice because I said I was fed up. I’m like this is not what life is about working for somebody else and just not really enjoying life, like, feel like there’s a chain around, you know, your legs chain around your arm chain around your neck, but you’re not gonna be able to move forward, I said, I got to break those chains on December 16 2016 That’s when I became a full time entrepreneur, and I’ve never looked back.
Mike Malatesta 27:44
Well congratulations first off, but what, what were the change. Like was it that you had to show up at a certain time, at a certain place or you had to follow certain rules or what were the, what were the chain so people know exactly what you’re talking about.
Jeff Badu 28:00
Yeah, so I mean when you’re working for somebody. It’s like you have to report to that individual, every day. So, at PwC bedform public accounting firm. It was very, very tough. Not only was it tough to work for somebody, but it was tough to work in that environment, they’re very type A personalities. You know, they’re very, they’re always about, let me get in my way or the highway, basically, you know, so some of the people that I was working with, they were always in a way where it’s like, Can I get a small break, I didn’t there, always, always, always wanting you to do something that you don’t want to do. So for me, the truth is, the freedom aspect, the reason why I really became an entrepreneur was to be free. Free of women show up for a while. Right, what type of projects I’m working on I was working on projects that I didn’t want to work on. I was talking to people that I didn’t want to talk to. I would sit next to people who I just want to sit next to. And it was just something that I said I don’t want to do this anymore. I don’t want to be forced to be somewhere, I don’t want to be. I don’t want to be forced to do things. I don’t want to do, and I don’t want to be forced to say, if you don’t meet those performance benchmarks. You’ll get let go or you don’t move to the next level, so there was no movement, even if you made a mistake, basically. So that type of environment where you learn, but it’s like if you make one small mistake everybody’s watching you make one small mistake, then it’s going to crush you. And to add to that I do, I was the only African American, That was basically in that role. Right, right. So, that’s right, that was a whole another thing for me I didn’t use that as an excuse or as a barrier, they want that, but that was also part of it as far as getting comfortable with the people you’re working with. And I said, Something tells me I just don’t belong here, it was. I mean and I put in my batch every single day and I still felt like that wasn’t enough, and I said you know what, I can thrive more in an environment where it’s open in its growth zone, and it’s not the Doggy Dog world where it’s like if you make one little mistake you’re making. Right.
Mike Malatesta 30:24
Well, like you said, Freedom became an entrepreneur for the freedom, which is why you should become an entrepreneur, I think, but I think a lot of us and I put myself in this to serve you get started with this. Yeah, I want to be free, I want to change the world I want to do all this great stuff and then the, the nuances are the grind of the business starts to take hold of you, and you begin to you sometimes begin to feel less free than you felt you know before you know when you were working a job or before he became an entrepreneur but it sounds like. And so I didn’t, so I didn’t I. The whole like, Okay, I’m in this to be free didn’t come to me really, and start working on it until 10 years or so into my, into my journey, you it seems I got that right away, and, and I’ve done it. I know we haven’t gotten into everything yet but it seems like you’ve done everything that you’ve done has been to, to, you know, grow as an entrepreneur but also to preserve that freedom, is that right.
Jeff Badu 31:30
Yeah, I mean that, that is the main reason I do it is that I do, is to be free, and to ultimately fulfill my purpose in life that’s been given to me.
Mike Malatesta 31:40
So the virtual CPA. That is it. Now that would be, you know, in COVID Everybody became a virtual CPA but I think before that there were probably very few so you mentioned, you know, how can I differentiate myself. How did you how did you get people to work with you though because people still were used to, probably, you know, sending their stuff to the CPA or going into the office and having a console, or whatever. Yeah. So how did you work your way around that.
Jeff Badu 32:14
I mean, to be honest I attribute that to I attributed part of it to companies like TurboTax, where they allow people to sort of be free, and not having to meet in person. And I also, I read the industry reports from head to toe, said, moving forward, people are going to want to go virtual, especially as we bring in people like millennials who are all about, you know, virtual in is all about freedom, all about just having this sense of, I don’t necessarily want somebody live in person. Now you’re right. When we started out, or when I started out, I did have to meet more people in person, to build my brand to build the trust to build the report. It was about 30% in person 70% of virtual. One thing about the online world is you have to have a physical presence online. Meaning your website has to be out there. I was exposed to a radio show, that became, you know my own radio show, because my cousin on the radio station, so people that are 2 million people that heard me every time I spoke. So now they can put a face to a name, just by going online, and just saying, Hey, he’s there, right he’s alive. You know he’s a nursing everyone they, You know he can do that testimony as well online. So that person that is an in person, individual that came to the office went online wrote a review. As I yeah he did, like you can actually do taxes, and on our website we put in bold, like hey, we can do taxes version. We have an FAQ section that lets you know how our intake process works so when you go online you have to be extremely transparent. You have to have a physical presence, and you’ve got to always put yourself out there, because yeah you’re right, we’re going to trust you. If they don’t really see you online.
Mike Malatesta 34:15
Okay, I appreciate that explanation and the Turbo Tax thing makes, makes sense because people were getting more familiar with just doing stuff themselves over, over on the internet. So, when I, when I described you at the beginning, as a parallel entrepreneur and a wealth multiplier, you started. I’m just gonna say we started as CPA but you didn’t want to do taxes. And what’s interesting about your story is that at least the CPAs that I know they’re there, who do want to do taxes, but they’re but from an entrepreneurial standpoint they’re, they tend to run like CPAs, so they basically that mean they’re entrepreneurs and that they own their business, but they’re not entrepreneurs and that they’re, you know, looking to do more than run, you know their, their tax or their, you know, consulting business around around that space but sounds like. And from the beginning, you weren’t going to kind of be in that box, I guess. So,
what is what is,
Mike Malatesta 35:25
what do you mean by parallel entrepreneur, maybe we’ll start with that and then we’ll get into the multiplier and how you develop valuing enterprises and I love the word enterprises, by the way, and now you’re doing all of this different stuff that probably wasn’t in your business plan in 2010
Jeff Badu 35:43
Yeah, So, that’s a great question. Basically, when I was trading my business plan, providing tax services in 2010, painful, a lot of people don’t also know a lot of you that know the story don’t know that I was also done by the investment, which is parallel related to Baidu tax services. Okay. Most of our clients in by the tax services are real estate investors. So then, a real estate investment company allows them to see that hey, this guy knows what he’s doing. When it comes to the tax side for real estate investors, because they probably use his real estate tax strategy that can help them minimize tax liability. So that’s one way, then another parallel business for example is by the life and health solution, LLC, which is a life insurance agency. Well, who better to get your life insurance newer than your own trusted advisor, AKA your CPA, you know, why do we have a new entity formation, who married a former legal entity than a person who knows your finances more than anybody else, your CPA. Then we have by the financial fitness, LLC, who better to coach you on your finances than your actual CPA who knows your taxes who say your numbers knows how many kids you have knows how much money you make, you know everything about you basically has your social security number. So who better to do those things, CPA and that’s where 12 companies were born and rise in the budu enterprises. That’s what we mean when we say parallel because they all relate to each other.
Mike Malatesta 37:18
Well I appreciate the lesson there like i said i That’s the first time I’ve read that but it makes a lot of sense. I get it, for sure. Absolutely. And I’m just so do you run all of those are those run by other people, are they, how do you how do you integrate all those things so it’s one thing to set up these parallel things but then it’s, I guess it’s another thing to actually run them successfully.
Jeff Badu 37:43
Yeah, great question. You know I feel like an entrepreneur is the number one challenge on a planet, is because every entrepreneur says, I can do it all by myself. If I don’t do it, nobody else can. For me I said wait a second, let’s do the 8020 rule. If somebody can do something 80% As good as me, then I’m going to assign that role to them. Right, Right, I’m going to delegate that task to them because eventually they will become, it’s not 100% 90% of the good as you can do, and that’s good enough. The world isn’t perfect, the world was created as a perfect thing, it was intended to be created as perfect. But, you know, it’s not perfect. So with that being said, we do have a team of people in the tax firm we have 30 team members, I’m the CEO of the tax firm. We have our chief operating officer COO, and we have our executives, we don’t do the whole we’re not really looking to do a whole top down thing. We’re more lateral right we’re more parallel than that, because we don’t want anybody to say oh yeah just because he’s a CEO, we can’t talk to him. We’re not that type of organization, we’re very, very purpose driven purpose feels better, you know vision centered sort of organization so we have 30 team members, all who do different things are all independent nobody’s a W two employee or anything like that, and they’re entrepreneurs just like we said most CPAs, they just want to do taxes so far we’re computer all day. In fact, these folks are actually going out there and not doing, and doing magic, taxes, they’re doing webinars there, introduce a client’s new services that we have. So overall, to sum it up, the budget Enterprises has 100 people. By doing tax services has 30 the life insurance company is around by my beautiful wife the bond. Chief, the CEO of that company. And we also have other companies who are led, and ran by other problems such as by the way, investments, which we have a property manager, who basically run the company.
Mike Malatesta 39:52
Okay, so you’ve got 100 essentially independent teammates, who are working in parallel, like the way I did that in parallel to make Badou enterprises, run the way you want it to run.
Jeff Badu 40:09
Exactly. So that means that I can be on vacation, today, and the company will still run, because you’re not relying upon a CEO of course when the CEO leaves, things get a little weird, right, it’s like, hey, our leader or many leaders is out, right, so we can’t talk to them we can’t call them can email me a lesson to the emergency. So by putting that structure in place, it’s like, I can be gone, even during tax season. Let’s say I’m gone for like three days or some tax season. There’s still people there that can do tax returns that can talk to take on new clients most CPA nowadays are not taking on any new clients, because they don’t have a sales team, they don’t have an integrity. Daughter, they have tax preparers qualified tax preparers that can actually sign off on the tax returns. So with all that being said, you got to grow your business, you got to take yourself out of the business, you know, where you allow people to work in the business, and then you are on the look at it from the outside looking in, while still letting the team know that hey if they fail, I can step in and take over.
Mike Malatesta 41:20
Jeff, you got really smart, really fast. I mean about about this kind of stuff, what, how old are you 30% 2028 And you figured out stuff that took me many many years. How did, how did you get so smart about these kinds of things.
Jeff Badu 41:40
Yeah, great question. I definitely want to attribute that to books that I read, I read books like Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki, which taught me about how to not work for money, the rich don’t work for money instead they let money work for them. And I really sat with me for a long time because when I initially wanted to be an entrepreneur. I didn’t really know how to grow the business. I didn’t even think that I would be putting, like a lot of people in there, maybe one or two people were you talking about 100 people and showing you know next year we’ll probably go up to 300 people. I mean that’s a lot. I didn’t think that far until I read books like that, so far as to write my own books, was the first one being an infinite expansion, how to infinitely expand your vision of abundance, which is a book about my purpose in life, so I definitely attribute books, I read the 2016 I’ve ever read a 20 to 30 books a year was helped me a lot. I also want to attribute it to my business coach Rick justice, who teaches me the 12 practices of life, and the 12 practices in business and in 2018 I thought a lot given up in the tax world. But I met Rick justice, and his wife Monique justice, and they turned things around
Mike Malatesta 42:59
you find, how did you find them, Jeff,
Jeff Badu 43:01
they actually found me on LinkedIn, really. Yeah, they found me on LinkedIn, and they one of their colleagues or associates reached out to me. I should turn them down initially, but then do persistent, they found something there that spiritual connection is something I had to, you know, I had to do it so I kept hearing about it down, you know, with a business coach, you’re not using chase you around, but that you did. And now we’re able to grow this multinational conglomerate, known as Baidu enterprises, And definitely want to attribute a lot of the wisdom to Rick somoni Justice for sure.
Mike Malatesta 43:38
Very smart. Like I said, You’re very smart. So a couple things I want to cover before we’re done. First of all, you mentioned, or I think I said it, that you support the super hungry and I want to I want to understand what you mean by the super hungry who’s, give me a give me an idea of who the super hungry are
Jeff Badu 44:03
super hungry individual is somebody that not just hungry man that you know what, When you’re hungry, in terms of food when you’re hungry, you can wait a little bit to eat. You can wait a few hours a night, you won’t necessarily die. You can wait a little bit to eat, but a super hungry individual to mine was starving. They got a now right man in that third year is gonna soak up the resources now. And when I saw that in the visual in 2018 when I was 16 I said I look like you are so glad with the video. I need to help people like it might not be new but it can be people that look just like you, who are entirely motivated, there’s a burning fire in them that you know is lit on fire right and equip them with the resources they need those are saying go, you know, and so with that, I’m super hungry individuals who might be self motivated, self inspired, who doesn’t mean to mind to wake them up, they wake up on your own. You know they’re they’re like that line, who’s ready to replicate open, and go out and chase for prey. You know, they’re, they’re somebody who is fierce and somebody who they understand that if they don’t grind today. They might not every another day in our lives.
Mike Malatesta 45:30
How do you flesh that out, Jeff, how do you
Jeff Badu 45:35
I mean when you though we have real conversations with people. Yeah, we have real conversations with these individuals, we read them, we study them, we get to know them, we build trust and report. Those are building trust report we’re basically identifying certain characteristics, certain things they say no I yeah I want to be here forever, right, or I’ve never had a license before, thank you for all that you get this word, when they come out of your mouth, and then actually, what are they actually doing. Are they showing up the train and it’s five minutes before everybody. Are they the first one that’s in a parking lot, in our case we do things racially, are they the first ones in the Zoom meeting room that’s waiting for the meeting. You know, so it’s very easy to tell who wants it, and who doesn’t. And by having a real conversations with people, I can easily tell you know that person. Let’s invest a little bit more, you know, for example, out a guy who, Not even a part of the same me, so I’m vouching for him before he even becomes a pharmacy. He reaches out to me on LinkedIn, because he needs a CPA license, and he said, I want to work with your firm I understand everything you’ve done, I watch our YouTube videos I know you know what you’re all about, when can I get started, and I told him, We don’t have anything OPM for six months he’s out there, what can I do now to do stuff. And then he was like, I mean, do you need help, I know you want a car rental business, do they need, car loans do you need my madness. And they still reach out to me to this day. You know, so they’re about to join a team, pretty soon, because that person understands that if they’re not doing anything, they might not live another day, because they’ll starve to death. Right. When you’re starving, you need to get back immediately. And that’s what that person was demonstrating. Okay,
Mike Malatesta 47:28
all right, appreciate that explanation that helps the, let’s talk about your real estate investments because you like everything that you do you kind of have a unique spin on it and here you know as I, as I’m reading this, it says, You’re basically looking to restore traditionally underserved areas. What does that mean.
Jeff Badu 47:50
Yeah, so that means that an area that historically hasn’t had a lot of resources, hasn’t had the best tenant management, you know, we call them slumlord that they’ve been assigned to. So, what we want to do is we want to say neighborhoods like the Southside of Chicago, certain neighborhoods in the south side, we see a building that’s rundown, that has boards all over windows are broken, we’ll fix those things so those communities look very presentable. And that way the tenants appreciate even more my Hey, we’re actually in a community, that looks pretty good presentable. What we’ll do is we provide management services, if something is broken, we’re not going to wait two months to fix it, we’re going to fix it right away. You know, so we’re going to give them that service that service because they’re paying rent, to us, so we all have an obligation to make sure that there is a place of abode is nice and stable, and they can actually live comfortably in there. Now we equip them with education through programs such as abundance Foundation, where we teach them financial literacy, on how to make money, how to preserve money how to build wealth, how to build multi generational wealth. So we, yeah you’re right, we put a spin on everything. When I just about audiologist invest in real estate to make some money. Yeah, the money is nice. And trust me when you make money. It is a good thing, but I’ve already put some impact behind the money, about replacing impact behind what it is we’re doing. So that ironically we might even normally make an impact. So when you give more you get more. So, if we’re just making money, we’re not really given anything. We’re just receiving, but when we’re giving something we’re given better management, and give them better systems we’re giving them better financial literacy resources. Now we’re going to get 10 times where we get, which in turn means we make even more.
Mike Malatesta 49:48
That’s always. So it’s always been something I wonder about you mentioned like slumlords you know people who own these buildings they collect rent and then they don’t make repairs they don’t pay the taxes they don’t it’s basically like a. I’m just going to the business approach seems to be this kind of milk this for everything I can, and then I’m going to disappear and I’m going to read reappear somewhere else, or whatever and it seems for like a horrible seems like a horrible way to live, first of all for the for the slumlord. Not that, you know, obviously it’s not a great place to live for people who who rent from these people but how you know you think about the mindset that someone has to have to do that, they must feel horrible about themselves, but, you know, because, like, you know you’re doing wrong by people all the time.
Jeff Badu 50:38
That’s why these are people that don’t get paid on time. What happens is they sell their buildings to people like myself, at a discount, and we take better care of the people.
Jeff Badu 50:51
You give what you, you are a reflection of the things you do to other people. So when you’re doing bad to other people. That’s why it’s bad happens to you, the karma effect when you’re doing good to people and good things can happen. And as long as you’re doing your best, as long as you’re doing good, like you know what I’m giving them my all today. Right, things will atrophy, but it has to, there’s no way that it has I haven’t had a bad day, knock on wood. You know how people say they’ve had bad days, you know, we have that moment, I haven’t had a bad day for about 10 years.
Mike Malatesta 51:27
Well you seem like the kind of guy that’s kind of like me, you choose by your days how your game is, I mean, you can’t choose what happens to you and your day, you can’t choose how other people think or say or treat you or anything but you can choose how you process it right and I know it’s not easy but it’s something you can choose to do. Well I hope you got another 10 years without a bad day, Jeff. So, So speaking of, you know a guy that had a business plan when he was a freshman in college, and has pretty much brought that to life times 10 Where, what’s your business plan like now for, you know, five years from now or what do you mentioned going from 100 people to 300 people. What else are you going to be, what else do you think you’re going to be doing and who are you going to be bringing along on your journey.
Jeff Badu 52:25
So I think for, for us, and by the way enterprises, we’re all about the general, we’re gonna grow in three times. So for example, we want to read 100 people, we want to have 300 And then we go to 1000 and there was only 3000 Then we go to 10,000, right, that sort of thing. You know, if we’re at a million a revenue, we want to get to 3 million that we want to get to spend the money that we’re going to get to 30 than 100 and so on and so forth. So we are a numbers driven. We are an accounting firm after all. But we want super hungry motivated people that want to work with an organization that truly cares about them, allow them to find their own purpose, allows them to drive their own cars where we give them the keys to the car. We want self motivated people. Yeah, and then we also want them to make an impact to organizations such as the brand new foundation where they can teach financial literacy, where they can educate the youth, or the homeless or whoever needs education. So the only people who are very non superhero individuals, and we’ve got a lot more strict on who we’re bringing on to our organization. Because we found out that certain types of people we just don’t work too well with okay so overall, what is our end goal, I mean we just want to keep going. And we want to inspire and support the ship runner, we can take on infinite resources in order to create an abundant lifestyle, which will lead to our vision of creating a community of abundance.
Mike Malatesta 53:55
So if you’re listening, and you’re super hungry, or you know someone who’s super hungry Jeff, where do they send Where do these people go,
Jeff Badu 54:07
I mean honestly, you can go to my website which is Jeff Bobby, calm, je FF DAP, calm, and that’s where you’ll find a lot of resources, you’ll find blog videos my three books that I’ve written, you’ll find a Subscribe For example, to our newsletter, things of that nature, so you know that’s an opportunity to get to know me, it’s an opportunity to get, you know, just get access to the resources. And then, if these these days, we can have a conversation usually email is the best way to get to me. My email address is dead. Sorry, Jeff email@example.com, with that you can also catch me on social media at JB AB 32 J Baidu 32 And that’s my Instagram and that’s my Twitter, so those are really three ways, but the main site is just baidu.com my personal website. Okay,
Mike Malatesta 54:58
got it. Well, Jeff, thank you so much for making time for me and for my listeners today it’s been really fun and amazing to to go on the journey with you through your through your very young career so far that’s been amazing and not just not just in the business side, but your career as a, you know, as a person, your journey as a person, and thanks for sharing that and I wish you tremendous success, which you probably don’t need but I but I, I, but I wish it to you anyway, thanks so much for coming on and sharing. Absolutely. The recording has stopped. All right, well thanks Jeff. Yeah, I really do. I got a great story and I really appreciated the China we barely scratched the surface. I’m sure but. But I hope if I hope it was okay for you. I hope to win all right.
Jeff Badu 55:56
Oh yeah, no, it was great, I love the the natural question, natural conversation. That’s what it’s all about keeping the natural keep in the room. Yeah, good.
Mike Malatesta 56:05
Do you so far in your real estate business do you were, how do you fund that you have investors that, that are investment pools, or how do you fund the that part of it.
Jeff Badu 56:16
Yeah, great question. I mean it’s usually through, you know, my own resources, such as cash or we might do like bridge loans where we borrow money from another bank. Okay, we do have a pool of investors that would go in on certain properties specifically with them, and they can basically throw in their money and they you know, get a nice return on each and every year. Okay.
Mike Malatesta 56:40
Yeah, I might be interested in looking at that if you’re, if you’re interested in, in having other people.
Jeff Badu 56:46
Yeah, that’s definitely something I would do have available for sure. Okay. Yeah, send
Mike Malatesta 56:52
me something if you, if you don’t mind. And, yeah, I’ll
Jeff Badu 56:55
definitely, I’ll definitely put something together, and I’ll make sure that I put you on the list of our, you know, those who are interested. And what I do sometimes I might send you a deal. Like literally, I might send you something to say. There’s enough Arizona to get in, or you’re interested in.
Mike Malatesta 57:15
Yeah, perfect. Yeah, that’d be that’d be, I might be interested in that. Sounds good, my opportunity, yeah I want to support people like you however I can. Yeah, you’re sure. Yeah. All right. Okay, thank you so much, I’ll let you know when this comes out and I really do appreciate you joining me and it’s great to know you. Take care. Okay, thanks Jeff robot. See it.