David shares his thoughts on how he manages his money and some of the lessons he’s learned. 

LYNN:    Hello and welcome to the Cherry Blossom Café podcast. I’m your host, Lynn Williams, owner of The Lifestyle Protector. This show is all about uncovering life’s mysteries about money. If you’ve ever wondered how other people manage their money, or the money mistakes they’ve made, well that’s exactly what we are going to talk about. We’ll uncover these mysteries and more.

LYNN:    On this episode, we talked to David Reeve. David is a successful entrepreneur and owner of Unleash Culture. He helps leaders design, implement and sustain powerful cultures that accelerate the growth of their brands. He’s done so well, that he has over 80 awards for business excellence.

LYNN:    Welcome David.

LYNN:    So it’s David Reeve from Unleash Culture we’re talking to this morning and we like to start with a pretty straight forward question which is, what was your first job?

DAVID:  My first job was actually a paper route. I was 12 years old, had a paper route, it was a big route, about 250 papers and I delivered every single one of them, I must say. So that was my very, very first job.

LYNN:    And then how did you get started with Unleash Culture?

DAVID:  Yeah, it really started actually with my second, what I call my real first job, like my first job was a paper route but my real job in the quote, unquote real world was with a company called [Cade] Restaurants.

DAVID:  Back then in the day it was called The [Kagen] Cleaver and I was 14 years old and I got a job there washing dishes and spent about 10 years with them, but it was my first introduction to culture. And it was the most fun place I had ever worked in, almost to this day.

DAVID:  There was just something absolutely magical about it. And so, I thought to myself, “What makes this place so magical?” And I guess that’s just the way all cultures are supposed to be in the workplace, so I got very enamored with culture and started studying what makes companies great and other companies not so great and then just made that my passion.

DAVID:  Over the years, I got blessed to help build a couple of very big brands in Canada, who had great cultures. Started studying it and started sort of becoming a bit of an expert in it, and thought, “Well, you know what? Other brands could use this knowledge,” so that’s when I started Unleash Culture.

LYNN:    Perfect. So then once you started to become more successful, did you handle your money differently?

DAVID:  I did. One of the things that I learned was the different between investing and spending, and it was a big shift to me because I used to always think, “Well, I’m spending money and spending money,” and I had to make a big shift on, “No, actually you’re investing.”

DAVID:  And so as we started to build our businesses and our different brands, understanding that difference made a big difference in how we accelerated the growth of those brands and then in my personal life as well. Yeah, understanding, stepping out of my comfort zone and understanding that, you know, become more, I would have to be smarter with my investing so, yeah, the success on the money part, just keeping more options and I started looking at my investing differently.

LYNN:    Yeah, perfect. Were there any big money mistakes over the years?

DAVID:  There were, absolutely. I think in the early years, sort of maybe going blindly into things without doing enough research and thinking that maybe, quote, unquote, throwing more money at it was the answer, which often isn’t. Also, just who I surrounded myself with in the early years. If I look back now, really understanding what their spirit of intent was and it probably didn’t align with my goals. So I would say, those are some of the changes I’ve made.

DAVID:  Also, when I was younger, played the markets a little bit, blindly, lost some money there. But again, realized who I was surrounding myself with, so now I’m a lot more due diligence, I surround myself with people who align themselves with my purpose and values and now we’re much smarter.

LYNN:    Fantastic. Do you have an investing philosophy?

DAVID:  Yeah, I do and it’s not really based on a formula or anything. I mean, we look at, I try to keep a very balanced portfolio, which I think is good, some high, medium and low risk. I am more into real estate investing now then leaving my money into, you know, in the old days, it was all savings bonds and safe and secure stuff. I like, I rent where I want to live and we invest in places that we want to own and then we rent those out. Or, we get involved with land deals or we get involved with seed money, you know, pre-development stuff.

DAVID:  So my philosophy really is, I look for a 20% return on anything that we get into and if it doesn’t yield us 20% or the ability to, then we just walk away from that.

LYNN:    Very good. Thank you. What’s your take on philanthropy?

DAVID:  Interesting. I think philanthropy can be accomplished two ways. One, I’m a big believer in giving of your time, as much as you give of your money, right? I think in many ways, your time and knowledge is more valuable than your money. I think it’s important to, my personal philosophy on it is, I align any of my philanthropic stuff my purpose in life and I only surround myself and get involved with things that align themselves with my purpose and accelerate it.

DAVID:  I give probably more of my time and energy and knowledge than I do of my money because I like to make sure that I’m having a direct impact on whatever I’m doing.

LYNN:    Fantastic. One piece of advice you’d give your younger self about money.

DAVID:  I would say that, that’s a great question. I would probably say, learn the different between investing and spending. Yeah-

LYNN:    That’s great advice.

DAVID:  I think so and also don’t be a victim of your environment, you know my story and my family was very safe and secure, and you know, etc, etc and I always wanted to branch out and yet I sort of fell into that safe and secure mode so I would say, follow your dreams, do your due diligence, surround yourself with really smart people who have your best interest at heart, but really understand the difference between investing and spending.

LYNN:    Yeah, fantastic. And then one piece of advice you’d like to give your older self about money.

DAVID:  It’s not everything. And don’t measure your self worth and your self esteem by the size of your bank account and don’t let it take over your ego. We’ve all been around those people who, their self worth and self esteem and egos is driven by the size of their bank account and they’re not really fun people to be around.

DAVID:  So yeah, there’s way more ways you can build your legacy than just the financial foot print so be careful with it, invest wisely but don’t make it your sole purpose in life.

LYNN:    Awesome. Thank you, David.

DAVID:  My pleasure, thank you.

LYNN:    Well that’s it for today. Thank you for listening to the Cherry Blossom Café podcast. You can check out the notes below for links related to this podcast. If there’s someone you’d like us to interview, we’d love to hear from you. Visit our website, LifestyleProtector.ca , for contact information and more episodes.

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