The Two Biggest Misconceptions about the Tropical MBA

Thanks to everyone who applied to TMBA #9. I’m excited to welcome Elisa Doucette to our team. Elisa was selected over 49 other applicants because she demonstrated the potential to kick serious ass for our publishing business. More on that soon.

Over the last few weeks– via my travels and the application process– I’ve had the opportunity to meet and talk with shit ton of blog readers, TMBA alumns, and members of the Dynamite Circle.

A handful of them even stopped by to crash at the TMBA house.

I’m always curious to compare people’s expectations of me and the TMBA vs. the reality. I’m also quick to solicit people’s critical feedback. Here are the most common misconceptions and critical feedback people have:

“You are like internet famous!”

People generally seem disappointed when I tell them the TMBA’s blog stats. I get the feeling they feel let down or even sorry for me! The TMBA currently has 1100 RSS subscribers. Last month we had 9700 visitors. I think that’s freakin’ sweet!!! After all, I podcasted to 40 people for six months. I’m pumped about everyone who follows this blog.

Our podcast is starting to get some serious traction and it’s way better than this blog, in my opinion. Check it out!

“I thought you would be all business!… but you are sorta, laid back…”

All the TMBA guys thought I would be Mr. Business Socks, either that, or it’s a euphemistic way of them telling me “I didn’t know you were such a twisted party animal.”

The truth is I’m not laid back– and either is my business partner Ian. I prefer to be hard on myself and set an example rather than to be tyrannical with my co-workers. I don’t feel good about playing daddy– I prefer to let people go the direction they prefer and harness their own personal energy and passion.

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When I ask people how I can make this blog better, the number one piece of critical feedback I get on the blog is:

“You should share more about yourself– your beliefs, emotions, thoughts…”

Lately I’m working on building a team to bring more serious researched business content to the blog, but I’m flattered that people want to hear more about me.

I still can’t believe I can just jump on a plane and go places. A few years ago, that was something I dreamed of.

Dynamite Circle party at New Badladz Beach Resort-- Double Score

We threw a party at Badladz beach resort for blog readers and members of the DC. Fun and inspiring times were had by all. Mindoro, Philippines is a majestic place, and our friends have some great properties to play on! I even went on a unsanctioned Scuba dive. With a BCD on my back, I entered the ocean via the beach. After my dive, a resort employee brought me a beer in to the ocean. Talk about service!

Joe and Justin from, I really love these guys...

At the party, I met Joe and Justin from These guys were tons of fun and inspiring to me. I’m planning on doing some work with them here at the blog, and I’m looking forward to meeting up with them again early in 2012. Read their shit. It’s for real.

Joe getting ready to board our make shift ferry ride...

Always an adventure… we had to smuggle ourselves off of the island because the coast guard had deemed the waters unsafe. We figured worst case scenario we’d have to take a little dip– plus we had plans to visit Subic Bay!

JMac learning how to sign my business partner's signature, for recreational purposes of course.

Part of the reason I flew to the Philippines was to welcome our newest TMBA family member John. John has a great little internet business going and he’s helping out in a big way with our marketing efforts. In this picture I caught him red-handed learning how to copy my business partner’s signature. These young guys gotta make themselves useful! ;)

The sunset on my 30th birthday...

I spent my 30th birthday ( :( ) with some great friends and world class sunset in Subic Bay. A lot of entrepreneurs want to be millionaires by the time they are 30– I know I did. I didn’t make it, but I sure as hell feel like one.

As my buddy Sean would say, "I like kids, I could just never eat a whole one..."

I always look forward to play with my friends’ kids. To me, this seems like a better plan than having my own. For now.

One of my favorite spots in the Philippines, Subic Bay...

I’m so lucky I can consider it part of my business to spend a week hanging with 4 great TMBA guys, and then to arrive back here in Bali to share war stories with another group of 4 smart gents and a few brilliant couch crashers to boot. All that and the one and only Sean Ogle hooked us up with a 5 star villa to spend the night hanging out in… so I should probably close the laptop and check out the pool.

I often say to Ian and Sean that given the resources at our disposal, we are only limited by our imaginations. The last few magical weeks are evidence of that for me, and motivation to try and be a little smarter.


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