“I really believe in tripling down on your strengths.
I am not a big fan of working on your weaknesses.” 
– Gary Vaynerchuk

 This episode comes straight from the MMT archives and features the most candid Q&A session Gary Vaynerchuk has ever done, in front of an audience of friends and peers. He goes deep, speaking frankly about his approach to running VaynerMedia and scaling it from 650 to 1,000 people in under a year, how emotional intelligence is his greatest strength, and what he sees as the next big retail boom: Starbucks for meditation.

Show Notes:


5:12 | Q: Who’s running VanyerMedia and what makes your relationship so strong?
A: (Gary Vaynerchuck)

  • Gary’s brother is running VaynerMedia, but he’s leaving the company soon because of illness
  • He created an “Office of the CEO”

10:08 – Q: Why has Gary built a business model on a scalable version of him versus the traditional agency model?
A: (Gary Vaynerchuck)

  • VanyerMedia is a scalable version of Gary’s marketing talent.
  • Be selective about the work that you take on.
  • Know what you’re good at and build a business on that.
  • Build a business that other people thought would fail because he knew it was the right move for him.

14:52  | Q: What did you do to start taking care of yourself?
A: (Gary Vaynerchuck)

  • He thinks about health like a business and asks himself, “is this going to make me successful?”
  • He hires one person to be completely in charge of his body
  • He creates an environment where he’s held accountable

23:44 | Q: How do you prevent brand parasites?
A: (Gary Vaynerchuck)

  • Never worry about someone stealing your brand.
  • Focus on making your brand the best it can be.

26:48 | Q: What are the keys to new business growth and scaling at a rapid pace?
A: (Gary Vaynerchuck)

  • Internal culture is key for continuity, low turn over.
  • Be mindful about what you expect from your employees. Average is an asset.
  • There is no growth without doing good work.

32:01 | Q: What will you do if your kids come to you at some point and say, you weren’t around enough?
A: (Gary Vaynerchuck)

  • Suicide and depression is common in  business due to the fact that many people who shouldn’t be entrepreneurs are doing it (it’s the cool thing to do).
  • We live in a culture of fake self esteem that does not equip people for the realities of failure that are inevitable if you are an entrepreneur.
  • He NEEDS to hustle in order to be happy.

40:18 | Q: Leveraging VanyerMedia to acquire other businesses and which businesses Gary plans to start with?
A: (Gary Vaynerchuck)

  • He buys things that were big at one point but that aren’t anymore.
  • He markets digitally to key demographics.
  • Snapchat and Instagram marketing is underpriced right now.

43:25 | Q: Is your fund open to outside investors and what’s the maximum buy in? What do you think about startups and social gives?
A: (Gary Vaynerchuck)

  • It wasn’t so much about the give, but that it was novel and now that everyone is doing it and it’s an established tactic it’s become just noise.
  • Intent is more important than the act. If the intent is wrong, you will not succeed

46:14 | Q: How will meditation play out in the market place?
A: (Gary Vaynerchuck)

  • Meditation will follow the same trajectory as the fitness industry over the last 20 years.
  • It’s a  foundational pillar in consumer society and it will be the next retail trend.
  • He believes that mental health is the next physical health.

48:50 | Q: What are your thoughts on parenting and our kid’s obsession with social media?
A: (Gary Vaynerchuck)

  • Raising kids with the right pillars is key – you can’t control the evolution of youth culture and you can’t immunize your kids against it.
  • he talks in detail about his own perspective on parenting and allowing his children to engage in social media and youth culture

54:02 | Q: What is the cost of personal brand building?
A: (Gary Vaynerchuck)

  • Cost of having a successful personal brand: leisure, the ability to relax, the responsibility of having people depend on you.
  • Sacrificing time with loved ones and losing friendships.

1:05:32 | Q: Is there room for women to change the dynamic of what it means to be a successful entrepreneur and going from the Crush It Economy to the Live It Economy?
A: (Gary Vaynerchuck)

  • Worry about what other people think holds people back more than anything else in the world and white men, who have it best, are not immune to that.
  • If one person in the world that looks like you ever achieved it, then you can too.

1:09:52 | Q:  How do you build and sustain self awareness?
A: (Gary Vaynerchuck)

  • Not quite sure how to answer that for himself.
  • Has observed the connection between safety and being able to develop self awareness amongst his team.
  • Empathy is one of the most critical keys to success.

1:12:16 | Q: Should you wait to focus on thought leadership once you’ve reached your number (particularly if it doesn’t tie into business development) even though it’s something that you ultimately, want to be doing most?
A: (Gary Vaynerchuck)

  • “Doing the whole personal brand thing and being out there, it’s such a double win. Like, depending on how much vanity you have, it gets to scratch that… and it’s intoxicating to have people and email you and say that you changed their life.I have people that do that every day now, it’s crazy.”

1:15:04 | Q: What do you fuck up on often, and when you lose how do you not lose the lesson?
A: (Gary Vaynerchuck)

  • Thinking you can do everything is a common mistake. You just can’t.
  • He remembers everything do he could never lose the lesson.

1:16:31 | Q: Where do you get yourself awareness, can you give some examples of when you realized you had it?
A: (Gary Vaynerchuck)

  • Realize that some people won’t like you… But the key is that if you have a high level of self acceptance then it doesn’t matter.
  • You’re going to die, so you literally have no time to be inauthentic.

1:21:01 | Q: Do you have any advice for entrepreneurs who are in high school and trying to balance life and business at that age?
A: (Gary Vaynerchuck)

  • “Kids, don’t listen to Tanya, don’t listen to your parents, definitely don’t listen to your fucking teachers, don’t listen to me. Listen to yourself. And I fucking mean that.”

1:22:25 | Q: What’s the ROI on not giving a fuck?
A: (Gary Vaynerchuck)

  • Speed.
  • Time. Focusing on what matters.
  • If you’re not worried about what people think, then you’re always in execution mode.

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