Christina knows sometimes, even U.S. service members could use some military aid. | RGR 107

Overview:

Most of us think “military aid” is something the U.S. provides to other nations, and don’t realize that our own troops and their families are often hurting financially. Military pay rates are low. Many young, newly enlisted families qualify as “the working poor.” Multiple deployments can mean frequent relocation, leaving a civilian spouse to find a new job while the other is overseas. And if military pay gets messed up (it happens), the rent or mortgage still has to be paid; the kids need food and clothes.

Christina Erlandson talks about how the nonprofit Military Assistance Mission steps in to help service members have one less worry.

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Christina Erlandson, Military Assistance Mission, Military Aid
Christina Erlandson, Military Assistance Mission

| Rise Grind Repeat 107 |

0:00
On today’s episode of Rise, Grind, Repeat, we talked to Christina for military assistance mission, we discuss how they’ve been able to grow their nonprofit to help more of our veterans. Let’s dive right in. Christina, thanks so much for joining another episode of Rise, Grind, Repeat, I am super pumped for this because as I was saying before this, I mean, I grew up in Yuma, which is very, very heavy in terms of military. So a lot of military family, a lot of military friends. And what you’re doing is all helping military specifically a certain segment, which I think gets underappreciated overlooked quite a bit. And really, before we get into that would love to kind of hear your backstory, but who are you in? And what are you all about?

0:45
Awesome. Well, thank you for having me. This is an incredible honor. I’m really happy to be here. And so a little bit of background, I’m a mom of two adults. Background In pageants, competed in pageants, which is crazy. And I’m a grandma a recent grandma.

1:06
Congratulation. Yeah, thanks.

1:07
Other than that, professionally, marketing, had a radio show. And I gotta say, it’s really strange being on this side of not being in the driver’s seat. But uh, but I appreciate being here. So thanks.

1:22
No, I appreciate you coming in. And really, when it comes to the foundation, we talked a little bit we connected a galleys event, talked a little bit about it, and a little bit of an email. But I’d love to just hear what what is the foundation? What do you guys about who do you guys serve? I would love to learn all about it.

1:38
So military assistance mission is a nonprofit that was started in 2012 by our founder, Marty bonds. Her son Michael Adam Marzano, who I never had the opportunity to meet him. He was serving our country, and he was actually in Iraq, and in had etha and he and three other soldiers were protecting a hospital, and the hospital was invaded by insurgents. And unfortunately, they were they were killed in action. Marga got the call on Mother’s Day. So yeah, it would be tough. I, as a mom, I I couldn’t even imagine and, and then to create an organization that helps Michael’s brothers and sisters and arms, you know, there are men and women that that receive support and help that that never knew Michael. Yeah. And the thing that I love is our our, our our organization, ma’am. military assistance mission. Also bears Michaels initials Michael, Adam, Rosana, that

2:39
is really cool. Yeah, that is really cool. So when it comes to I mean, serving, it would be great. I mean, us as a business would be great serve every business that’s out there. But you know, we have a few people. And there’s only so many people that we can serve. So identifying who it is I want to go after so crucial. How did you guys identify that segment that you really wanted to serve? And really, what was the evolution of that?

3:00
Yeah. So. So the the group that we serve is going to be those military families, whether that’s active duty, or reserves that are e five and below, as well as post 911 Purple Heart recipients and those that have a Combat Action Badge. And I know that’s a mouthful. But those that are in that group, they know that they’re in that Yeah, so that’s the the veteran group that we serve. And we’re helping them with financial assistance. So So again, that’s helping with basic needs, rent, mortgage, car payment, car insurance, utilities, food, I think people would be surprised to learn how just how many of the men and women that that do serve our country, and struggle financially. So it’s great that we can step in and help them. So II five relates to their pay grade. Now, ie six and below, then we help them with morale aid. So those are things like our baby showers are back to school, as well as Operation Christmas giving. So baby showers, you know, many of these families are deployed. So they’re not near friends and family when that new expectant arrival comes. And so we step in, and we help them with some of those essentials. And then back to school, we’re equipping them with all the essentials that they would need going back to school so that they so that just like their civilian counterparts, they have everything that they need when they’re starting school. And if you can imagine the financial burden that many of these men and women that serve our country struggle with, you can probably imagine how difficult it can be at the holidays to provide some holiday cheer. So Operation Christmas giving, we give them you know, christmas toys and just create a really festive fun environment.

4:42
Yeah, so I think the biggest the biggest disconnect is I mean it when it comes to politics, there’s so much spending that happens on the military. And I think a lot of people associate that with military people must get paid a lot if we’re spending all this as a country on defense and stuff like that, but I think that’s a huge misconception. misconception. Do you have any insight into basically the reality of the financials of a new military member on, it is a struggle.

5:07
So actually, those those young, newly enlisted families, many of them do qualify for working poor. Now, some of the things that would contribute to some of the financial constraints on the family is going to be multiple deployments. So let’s say you have a, you have a married couple, one of them is enlisted, the other one the civilian spouse, they get, they get orders to relocate those multiple orders to relocate can cause difficulty for the spouse to find employment. So that’s one of those components that can cause a strain on the family unit, if you will, and then also just what they’re making at that at that lower rank.

5:49
But I mean, I think you hit the nail on the head, it’s almost poverty levels, I mean, pretty much, that’s what he equates to. And then you mix that with, okay, now they’re gonna be gone. And if you’re married, I mean, I, you saw a little seven month old, I could not imagine getting deployed, I mean, leaving this country and then leaving all that to my wife, I mean, that I can imagine the emotional stress the, I mean, how to navigate the financials on are you gonna work because someone’s gonna want like, not even the financial part, the logistics, everything. I mean, it could be chaotic. And so

6:21
and, and sometimes, just like in the, in the civilian world, in corporate America, sometimes pay gets messed up. And sometimes that happens in the military world as well. So in that scenario that you described, let’s say you are the service member, your deployed, pay gets messed up, well, there’s still a bill that needs to get paid, you know, there’s still groceries that need to get put on the table, there’s still rent or mortgage and on all of those things. So the last thing that we want is for that service member, to be worried about those things. So when we can set you know, when they’re deployed, whether they’re, they’re here, or they’re deployed, when those things happen. If we can step in and help to to alleviate some of that burden, then, you know, that’s, that’s what we’re here to do.

7:03
Yeah. And I mean, as you mentioned, I mean, you have a military spouse that’s having a little one. I mean, I can only imagine the emotional stress that I put on the little one. And I mean, you’re talking about I mean, impacting future generations on what is the upbringing of that child. And if you guys can come in and make it a little bit easier, you’re making a way better future for that little one, which essentially makes a better future for the country. And that’s so huge.

7:24
Absolutely. And then, you know, when you speak about the those, those little ones, when, when those children are going to school, we don’t want them to feel inferior to the other students, we want them to have everything that they need. Last year, the unexpected happened, you know, we had a pandemic we had, we had distance learning so so so many of these kids that were doing distance learning, actually did not have adequate devices for distance learning, which is mind boggling. Yeah, you had 200, over 200,000 students that didn’t have internet access 300,000 that didn’t have devices for distance learning. Can you imagine doing your job from a phone or from a tablet? So when I first heard this, this number about the distance learning, we reached out to our families to find out if if they were experiencing that, and it was, it was really interesting, because it was a while before anyone reached out to let us know, sure enough, one family stepped forward and said, You know that her kids were in her husband’s deployed. So here she is, she’s a mom by herself. She’s got kids, she has one computer in the house that she and her kids are sharing. And she asked if there was any chance that she could, if we could help her with a computer? Of course, we can. Yeah, the thing that was fascinating to me was how long she waited on asking for help. And I think so many times people are struggling. And they don’t want to acknowledge that, that they need help. Yeah, well, because of this one mom, because she verified that this was happening. We were able to push out to the community and say, Look, when if you’ve got to use a laptop that you can donate, please donate that so we can get it up. Every single family that reached out to us that needed a laptop for their kids was able to get a laptop. Wow. Yeah. So that is

9:09
so cool. And I mean, you bring up a good point. I mean, one, it’s one thing to identify where the problem is, but you got to have some type of hand razors or something to kind of guide that. And I mean, you’re talking military families where I mean, it’s it’s very raw, and I mean, you’re not going to be one to be quick to point out my downfalls or where my weaknesses are isn’t I don’t have supply I don’t have what I need to educate my children and everything like that. So I mean, most people, it’s tough to admit that I don’t have what I need, let alone I think, you know, on the military side, I think it’s even even harder. So for someone to step up and mention that I think it’s huge and it sounds like it drove a lot of good to a lot of a lot of other people

9:48
because that one mom spoke up. It created this program, this operation distance learning. And what was fascinating to me once we started once we really pushed it out and started hearing the stories back it It was not uncommon to have a scenario where you’d have a family of four, a work from home mom sharing a laptop or a computer with two other kids. So how do you do that? I truly believe the bravest thing you can do when you need help is to reach out and ask for help. And that’s

10:15
so hard to do. And I mean, knowing that, I mean, it’s my mind always goes to you, and I’m sure a lot of other people do as well as people need help. Okay, here’s money, but like you just mentioned, it’s not just financials, it’s devices, it might be time, it might be, you know, helping with laundry, whatever it may be. How are you guys really, in taking that from people? Because I mean, you have a lot of different ways that you can help. So I guess, if someone were to say, Hey, I, I already love what I’m hearing, how could I don’t? Am I not have money? My husband devices, I might have time? What are all the different ways that you guys accept donations?

10:48
I am so glad you asked that. So time, talent and treasure, I love that. So those are absolutely the ways to help our nonprofit to truly, almost any nonprofit is going to benefit from time, talent and treasure. So you know, you all are experts at what you do. You’re donating time, right now in doing this, that’s a great way that professionals that individuals can help out. And we love that help. Absolutely do. Another way would be you know, your talent, let’s say a photographer or videographer wanted to help out in that way, that’s a great way to help. A treasure treasure doesn’t necessarily mean always money. You know, last year, we were just talking about the operation distance learning, it was difficult for people to just even if you had the resources to go and buy laptops, so when people were able to donate laptops, that was huge. So with the items that are donated, we were able to create a group on Facebook for our military families only. So this is our ma’am resource group. So when someone reaches out and says, you know, I’ve got this item, maybe it’s a couch or you know, you name it, anything that they’re wanting to donate, we can post that in the group. And then we can share that with all of our military families, and then connect them. So some of the smaller items, like we had someone that donated a smartphone, and we had someone that donated a smartwatch, those are items that we can take in the office and then get them into the hands. We’re in a small office. So if somebody had large furniture, we wouldn’t be able to take that. But we can connect the dots. I love that I

12:24
think the Facebook group is so big, I mean, that that’s where my mind was going is like man, I got a couple devices I got laying around, I mean, it’s they don’t get you sits, how much stuff is just laying around that I disregarded every day, but could be such a huge life changing thing for someone not life changing. It’s gonna create all these opportunities, but just make their life that much easier. Do you see that quite a bit that, you know, people might have things that didn’t realize were such value?

12:52
Yeah, absolutely. So we’re seeing more and more of that. At the beginning of the year, we did this spring cleaning sale. And you know, so many people during the pandemic were cleaning out and decluttering and getting rid of. And so we had this crazy idea, what if we did a spring cleaning event. And so we did that, and people donated from all over the valley. And then people came from all over the valley to shop or military families were able to shop for free. Because of that one event, it created this idea in the minds of several individuals. For example, a friend of mine and a realtor had a winter visitor that was selling their home, fully furnished, high end home, all the furniture needed to go. So we ended up creating an open house event and military families were able to come and shop for free for those items. It was an out of the box. It was a an idea and a concept that we’d never done before. And so what will happen next? I don’t know. So somebody watching this has an idea. We love creative ideas. Yeah,

13:55
but I think that’s what I love about the group is someone might have an idea that the more collective minds you can bring together that all have the same kind of vision desired goal and all that the more creative ideas that come to fruition that doesn’t necessarily take tons of money to then impact lives. And that’s what’s so cool. That being said, I mean, what are you guys doing from marketing perspective to really get this out there trying to get your guys’s mission and vision in front of more people to get more, you know, finances more talents or treasures and everything.

14:25
Well, we have an amazing board. We have an amazing, supportive and very influential board. One of those is Nicole Crites. So she is with AZ family three TV, and we’ve had some incredible opportunities to be included in specials. For example, last year there was the 911 special we had a 30 minute segment that was all about 911 and that was that was created and produced by Nicole was fantastic. That’s going to happen again this year. Other local TV stations have been so incredibly generous and When we’ve done events like the the spring cleaning of Fox 10 came out and covers that. So incredible opportunities there. Networking is huge social media is another way that we’ve gotten the word out. And we’re always looking for other creative ideas to get the word out.

15:18
Yeah. Now that’s awesome. had someone in recently that that does work in nonprofits and stuff. And he mentioned that, you know, grant money has kind of gotten a bit tight, we work with a few nonprofits, and over their donations have gotten blown out of the water. So it seems like there’s a little bit, you know, some nonprofits are doing really well. Some are just kind of, you know, it’s tough to get out there. Really, what does that look like? I mean, is it tough finding those grants? or What does that whole financial?

15:47
I think we’ve been I think we’ve been very fortunate. We’ve had success in the grants that you know, you’re not going to get all of the grants. Yeah. So we apply for the grants, and some of them were blessed, and we get them and then some of them, we don’t. And so just keep on going and keep keep going. You keep looking for other grants and apply for those grants. Our financial revenues has come from grants. It’s also come from sponsors, you know, businesses that have the ability to, to sponsor different events and to support in whatever way they can, like our golf tournament, we had sponsorship levels that range from truly every level imaginable, just so that it gave businesses the opportunity to be involved to support at the level that best fits them. And then the Arizona charitable tax credit, that’s, that’s huge for us. So, you know, that dollar for dollar tax credit is amazing.

16:37
Can you go into a little bit more? Because I think this is really one of my questions is I think there’s a lot a lot of misconception of just donating. I mean, you don’t want to donate just for the tax incentive. But there is something to be said, where it’s like, I can choose to give my money to the government, or it could go over here, and it’s probably gonna be used a bit better.

16:53
So it’s interesting before coming to work for military assistance mission, I had heard so many different nonprofits talk about the Arizona charitable tax credit, and I didn’t really understand how it works. And I was a little bit suspect. And before I say another word, let me just share, I am not a tax professional, you should definitely check with a tax fine. Yes. Do not take this as tax advice. Like let me make that very, very, very clear. But you know, I heard it’s $1 for dollar tax credit, how does that work? So when I did my taxes, first, and I went online and did my taxes, and first I did it without the donation involved, and saw what that was going to look like. And then I put the donation in, and sure enough for me for my tax scenario. It truly was every dollar that I donated. So as an individual, I was able to donate $400 shit, is it $400? Yes, if

17:47
you’re able to donate some money, I

17:48
was able to. So so I was able to donate. And every dollar that I donated came right back to me and my Arizona State refund. And it was so fast. But what was really fascinating is it before doing it, I think the refund I was gonna get was under $100. And then with you know, adding in my my tax donation, I ended up getting more back, which was mind blowing to know. And tax

18:12
credit. deduction.

18:14
Exactly, exactly. So every dollar that I donated to a military assistance mission, went to military assistance mission, and then the state gave me all that money right back that. So again, not a tax professional. But that was that was my personal experience.

18:31
But I’m so big on this because it’s there’s so many things that you can donate to where again, it’s like, you can either give your money to Uncle Sam, or you can donate to this good thing. I mean, eventually that money’s gonna get dispersed elsewhere into whatever. So it’s like, Are you okay with how the government dispersed his money? Or do you want to give here at the set, it’s gonna, it’s advantageous to you. So it’s might as well give to where, you know, what, what leads with your heart? You know what I mean?

18:54
And absolutely, I completely agree. And and I think one of the things that we really saw last year was the the services that so many nonprofits offer, you know, was at an all time high of, of the recipients needing the help. There was a lot of fear in the nonprofit world. Oh, yeah. You know, so so that with this pandemic going on, and with people not being able to work will people be able to give and and people did give and they continue to give, which was such a blessing because as people are giving you know, we were also able to give to those that that needed know what we’re able to offer?

19:32
Yeah, no, I do you guys use Google Grants at all. You guys so funny that you mentioned that that fill it out right now.

19:41
I actually applied for that last week. And I’m just I’m waiting to really yeah,

19:47
it’s funny came up on a previous episode. I mean, that’s how we got started in this is working with Google and stuff like that. And so know about the Google grant might have some context might be able to

19:55
yeah, check. Yeah, we are. We’re in benighted. We are in process and wait It’s amazing. The fact that Google offers free advertising to nonprofits. I mean, it’s huge.

20:07
And not only that, I mean, it’s not just free advertising a couple bucks here and there. I mean, it’s 10 grand a month. Like it’s, it’s, it’s huge. And

20:13
in the world of nonprofit, whether you’re using that to to educate people about your mission to attract volunteers, donation, I mean, it’s just, it’s mind blowing.

20:23
Well, I mean, the biggest struggle, and I mean, correct me if I’m wrong, but with most nonprofits, it’s, most nonprofits are doing a great thing. It’s just getting that word out there in front the right people, and to have you know, an extension where you get 10 grand a month, at no cost, you can just use it that that’s a tool to get in front of there. And I’ve seen so many nonprofits go from you know, we’re small organization, get this take advantage of it. And to your point, it’s request donations, the education, the the all the different facets of the nonprofit, and through that drives the awareness, and all of a sudden, you’re just seeing donations, double, triple, quadruple over the years. And it’s it’s so amazing. I mean, so many don’t know about it. I mean, that’s, that’s what’s met, Google needs to do a better job ever. Exactly. No, Robin,

21:05
I stumbled on that last week, and was absolutely amazed. So I’m, you know, right now, we’re, we’re just waiting to find out.

21:13
Awesome. I mean, you’ve probably been part of so many awesome stories. I mean, you’re helping, not only families of families that are me, and are just contributed this nation, so greatly, what is one of the greatest stories that I guess you can, you know, go through the memory bank, and may just feel so great?

21:29
Or, you know, gosh, there’s so many. And immediately, I’m thinking of this, this young family who was the recipient of one of the laptops, and I have the picture of these kids like seeing the look on their face, when they got their laptop, like that photo is the one that whenever I get a little bit stressed and a little bit overwhelmed, I just go into my military family photos, and I pull that up, and just seeing the smile of those kids. I just, I love it. It’s the greatest thing. And then also, one, so rolling Kassianos was in our, he was in our 911 event last year, he was a Purple Heart recipient, and and struggled, you know, really had struggled with some demons and, and then also some, some injuries and that was affecting his just just affecting him in a negative way. And knowing the impact that we were able to have with him and to ease the financial burden so that, you know, he wasn’t stressed. And so he wasn’t his wife wasn’t stressed. Yeah. And those, those are a couple that really stand out to me. Now, that’s

22:39
awesome. And I think through this, I mean, you’ve been mentioning a couple different events, the spring clean, I don’t know if that was in person, but the golf tournament, how’s the pandemic kind of affected the events? And I guess, what are things looking like, as you guys are moving forward, I’m sure. You’re getting pretty excited that things are opening back up.

22:55
I am thrilled that things are opening back up. I am a social person. I am an extrovert. So I’m very happy that things are opening up. But it’s a great question. You know, I, as I’m about to say the word I really don’t like this word, but we did. We pivoted like so many others, we had to pivot. So our back to school event was one that was done very differently pre pandemic. So for that the families would come and they would pick the different school supplies that they wanted. We couldn’t do that we couldn’t have people touching all the different supplies. So we pre packed those items and then did a drive thru event. Sanderson Ford is a huge supporter of ours and, and they generously allowed us to take over one of the parking lot so that the families could really was really huge. So families could could drive through, and then they could get the backpack. So yeah, so so that went incredibly well. We’ll be doing the event this year, like that again. And then our Christmas event. Previously, it was a open house style. And it was actually the name included open house. Well, we couldn’t really do that. So the open house again, the families would, they would wait in line. And then they would go inside. And they would they would basically pick all the different items. So since we couldn’t do that shifted gears. And the families gave us their wish list of the different types of items that their kids would like. And then we invited people to adopt a family and so they would shop for families. And we also had Sanderson Ford were part of the operation Santa Claus. So we received toys through that program. And so we along with volunteers, we went and shopped through our toys and fulfilled these these wish lists. So day of instead of the families waiting in line, and then going through and picking items. We brought them again back to Sanderson Ford, we had photos with Santa we had superheroes that were there just interacting with the kids socially distant And taking photos. And we had Christmas carolers. So we shifted from a lot of the hands on Yeah, to kind of creating an atmosphere and a background, we had Christmas decorations. We had a Santa’s workshop. And volunteers would let the kids go through and pick an item for either themselves or if they had a sibling, they, they could do that. While the parents came and collected the the gifts and then scurried, and put them in the car. That’s cool. Yeah. So we changed a lot of the way that we did things. You know, who knows how it will, how it will go in the future. But we got really positive feedback from the parents.

25:37
Now that’s awesome is definitely an interesting holiday season. I mean, got a seven month old, she was born a month in November, so a month before Christmas. And our first Santa photos are me, my wife there, she’s on our lap, then we have Plexiglas behind us and Santa. But I think to your point, and yeah, I agree, pivot has been so overused the last 12 months. But the thing I can’t appreciate about the whole, you know, pandemic, and everything is it’s been amazing how people have adjusted and changed.

I mean, there’s so many people had to reinvent their business models and how they get in front of people and how they generate revenue and everything. And, you know, unfortunately, some, some people didn’t make it, but I think those that, you know, have the creativity and kind of figured it out, you know, really flourished. And I think that’s going to translate into huge momentum as things do open up, especially for you guys, because I think events are so big, especially for nonprofits, because that’s the time to interact and share the stories and all that and I think once you get ingrained into that it’s you kind of see the vision of where all this is going. And I think that’s where more donations happen and and just more giving happens. And so I’m excited to see what what that does for you guys as things open up. And and yeah, I would love to kind of see what what events you guys are coming out on the table with. Awesome, and you know, it’s tough to plan, especially after what’s happened. I mean, a lot of people make short term long term goals. And in one week, things can be changed, especially, you know, with the pandemic. But that being said, What are things that you guys are working on you personally, as an individual, but you know, as an organization, what are some things you’re working on? Or what are some of your 612 month goals? Looking like? Yeah, so

27:13
you’re really good at asking the right questions. So the thing that we’re working on right now that we’re just, you know, a couple of weeks away from launching is a Veteran Business Directory. So I come from a long line of entrepreneurs have a great appreciation for for entrepreneurs. And you know, so the the men and women that have served our country, that, then are business owners, we just want to be able to support support them. So the Veteran Business Directory will be just that it will have veterans as well as spouses of veterans and those active duty entrepreneurs that maybe they have a side hustle, maybe they you know, have something going on. So we want to be able to feature them. So they will be included at no cost, always, they’ll always be in there at no cost. Our first issue, we’ll go July, alive July one, it’s going to be a digital publication pushed out through issue. What’s cool about that is that we’ll be able to feature not only veterans, our programs, different events that are coming up with with digital, you can include video, so really excited about that. And and veterans will be able to provide ads and editorial content. So that’s what we’re actively that’s a passion project that we’re in the midst of right now.

28:29
That is so cool. How did I mean, how did that even come together? I mean, it’s so smart. Because, I mean, you mentioned the side hustle, I think, you know, military, even though out on duty doing stuff, there’s still side hustles and like you said, it’s not the not getting paid the most. And so having these side hustles being able to create something that people can see what’s going on and be able to kind of increase some some revenue for people was awesome. How did this idea come to life?

28:54
Yeah, so a couple kind of pieces to the puzzle. As a military brat, men, we were not in that lower rank area. My stepfather was a heart surgeon. So when we would get relocated when we would get orders to move. My mom was an entrepreneur. So every time we moved somewhere new and this was before the digital age had it hadn’t been during that time period, she would have just had one business that she took with her that every time we would new she would she would reinvent herself and she would create a new business so so so what one of the thing byproducts of this Veteran Business Directory is I would love to see more of the spouses of active duty, maybe start a business and know that they have the resources from us of promoting their event, their business. Okay, but where did the digital magazine idea come from? My background was in marketing for a commercial landscape business, okay.

And it’s a it’s a growing industry. Real sexy. Yeah, let’s talk about plants. Let’s talk about turf. Let’s talk about trees. Let’s talk about grass. And so in attracting other so they’re their model was aways and commercial locations. So instead of just sending out a newsletter, an email, I wanted to create something different. And so I fumbled around and created a digital magazine. That’s cool. It was very clunky. And when I look back on it, I’m just like, I don’t know why anyone looked at this, and I’ve gotten better. So. So that was kind of the idea behind it. And and where I had the concept for doing something like that.

30:34
No, it’s really cool. And I mean, you mentioned looked back. And I mean, it’s definitely evolved. And I think one thing a lot of small business owners and entrepreneur entrepreneurs struggle with is trying to perfect something before getting it to market. And I think there’s a lot of missed opportunity, because it’s, there’s something we say here a lot. And perfection is the enemy of great where you might be preventing yourself from being great by trying to be perfectionist, and from that no one can see what you’re trying to do. Did you ever struggle with that at the beginning of this, where it’s like I had this idea, and now I see it. It’s like, I don’t know if I want people to see it. Did you struggle with that? And if so, how did you kind of get over that?

31:08
Yeah. So I started so I, I met Marty, I first learned about military assistance mission back in 2013 2012 2013. And

31:23
so I just totally it’s a Friday afternoon you are okay, okay, sorry about that. Sorry, what are we three o’clock? Oh, you’re good. Okay. Yeah, that’s it. Okay, you’re six right now. Okay.

31:46
So a year ago, I started working for military assistance mission. And I had this idea for the digital magazine more in my back pocket. I wasn’t sure how we were going to use it. And so it wasn’t really a matter of it not being perfected. I just didn’t, hadn’t yet seen all the pieces. Yeah. So it took a year to kind of develop and what that idea of percolate. As far as Do I have fear of putting something out there and seeing how it’s no? And maybe that’s a flaw? I don’t know. But my personality is more shoot and then aim. And again, I don’t know if that’s, but that’s just who I who I am. And fortunately, you know, I’m one piece of the puzzle at military assistance mission. So we have a lot of different personalities and a lot of different input. And you know, what’s your take on this? So it really is a collective of how, how do we how do we push that forward? And I think any time any of us has a little bit of doubt, and is is good enough, because of the input and because of the amazing team that we have, we’re able to work through that.

32:52

No, I mean, that’s and that’s where team effort comes in. Because it’s, you might be scared to say saying something, presenting something, whatever it may be, but just having that your teammate come in and say, it’s great, or it’s great, but this could be changed. I mean, kind of giving the the narrative or directive of where to go to make it great. I think having that is so awesome. But I just ask because I mean even deal with clients and stuff like that, it’s it’s the trying to be perfect. And sometimes it’s like well, now we didn’t get to market for three weeks now we kind of missed the opportunity and it’s you could almost prevent you know what it is that you’re trying to do it for, for that perfection. So I would say it’s not a not a downfall of what you do. Because if anything, if it isn’t the most perfect you’re gonna get that feedback to then get it to perfection whereas if you hold it back you’re not doing anything and never see the light of day and so not a downfall. I think it’s awesome. I think more people need to be like that, just take your shot, get the feedback and adjust my goodness,

33:42

you’re gonna give me a big head You know, I I think we all serve someone. And and for us. If we were to let fear stand in the way of putting something out there of creating of doing then we’re actually hurting those men and women that serve our country. And and everyone serves someone so you know, even though who we serve as you know, military and their families, you know, you serve your clients, everyone serves someone so when you let fear stand in the way you’re really doing a disservice not just to you but to those that you serve.

34:23

You said a way better than myself I said earlier you’re leaving opportunity on the table but that’s what it is is everyone starts the business for some reason and that’s some cars that’s to solve some problem that someone has and if it’s you’re not going to get that video or that piece of crap whatever it is to market because you’re worried someone could have stumbled on it you could have completely changed their life and now you miss that opportunity of what even got into business for and that’s where I it it’s tough to hear the Hollis keep waiting let’s not the the not wanting to release it because the fear of of that’s what’s the reject but I guess you know what people might say and it’s like man, you you’re missing out on so many people that Help over the fear of of, you know, the criticism, I guess.

35:04

And even once you have it perfected, even once you say, Okay, this is perfect, I’m ready to push this out there, I’m ready to market it, I’m ready to publish it. You’re gonna find something in it later that you didn’t like. And and I see that all the time when I go to Facebook and I look at my memories, and I see something that I posted six years ago. And I think, Why Why did you think that everyone needed to know what you ate that day?

35:31

So Isn’t it? Isn’t it funny how that all works? Exactly. And it’s it’s just known that take your shot, get the feedback adjust. It’s, I always had this. I mean, Gary Vee someone I like a lot. I mean, he basically puts it into perspective, where it’s like struggling, you know, bad Klein, communicate whatever it may be. The other day, it’s like, we’re still live family members still alive and healthy, like, everything is good. And like, just just go forward with it. It’s amazing what the opportunities that will open up.

And that’s, that’s what I love what you’re doing, and I can’t wait to see this digital publication come to life. That’ll be awesome. Well, you’ll have to share the link, and we’ll definitely share it for you. That’s awesome. So I mean, this has been great. Is there anything that I didn’t touch on that you are wanting to really touch on? I’d love to. I’d share anything that we didn’t touch on.

36:19

You did an incredible job of doing your research, do your homework and asking great questions. And I really think the we covered a lot. I think the only thing that we didn’t talk about is how pivotable pivotal volunteers are all the different events that we do. There’s no way we could do them. We’re a small team, there’s truly no way that we could do them without the help of volunteers. I think that’s about it.

36:45

Yeah. And I think that’s a good segue. So if anyone’s looking to donate their time, their energy financials, their tribe, whatever it may be, how can they find you? How can they find the website? How can they donate?

36:58

We’re online, everywhere. We’re on Facebook, we’re on Twitter, we’re on LinkedIn. If you just go to the website az, ma’am, that’s mm for military assistance. mission.org. You know, we we definitely could use the help of volunteers. It’s easy to sign up, and we’ll get you all the details. Awesome.

37:14

Well, if, if you’re watching, I’m sure there’s plenty of people here that have some sort of military connection. And so I’m excited to kind of see what happens I’m hoping that drive some awareness and you get some people to to sign up and help. I’m gonna check it out. And I’d love to donate some time or whatever we can to kind of help get the awareness out there for you guys as well. Thank you so much. Really appreciate it. Thanks so much for your time. Thank you.

Transcribed by https://otter.ai


Where To Find Christina Erlandson

LinkedIn: Christina Erlandson

Website: www.azmam.org

On the previous episode of RGR, Dustin talked Jasson Bressler

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