Wealth Podcast Post

Immigrant Mentality with Sam Kwak

George Grombacher May 24, 2022

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LifeBlood: We talked about the value of an immigrant mentality, what that means and how to get one, how to have and scale your impact, and how to get started with Sam Kwak, one half of the Kwak Brothers, serial entrepreneur, and real estate investor and mentor.  

Listen to learn why intelligence isn’t what you need for success!

You can learn more about Sam at TheKwakBrothers.com, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn.

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Our Guests

George Grombacher

Sam Kwak

Episode Transcript

george grombacher 0:00
Come on

blood This is George G. And the time is right welcome today’s guest struggle powerful Sam Kwok Sam, are you ready to do this? Yes, let’s roll. Let’s go. Sam is a serial entrepreneur. He’s a real estate investor, a certified credit counselor who helps people make or save money in real estate. Sam, I’m excited to have you on. Tell us a little about your personal life smart about your work and why you do what you do.

Sam Kwak 0:37
Yeah, hey, Thanks, George. So just like what you said, you’ve mentioned in the intro, my brother and I were serial entrepreneurs, real estate investor, and we’re in the real estate and finance and finance space. And we’ve been in this space since 2014. So it’s been almost about seven years. And we started our business back in 2014. In our dorm room. Of course, people were laughing at us, right saying, Oh, you just focus on getting a job. You know, I remember one one particular professor, she was she wasn’t, she wasn’t even a professor. She was more of a faculty member sat down, she’s like, Hey, you really need to focus on schoolwork, you know, don’t don’t get too caught up with extracurricular activity. Right. So that’s what she said, Right? extra curricular activity. And that’s how she described the business. And yet, when I graduated, I already had 75 rental doors, which means that I had 75 tenants, 75 families pay me rent every single month, just coming out of coming out of a college graduation, right. So what appeared to be what appeared to have been a quote unquote, extracurricular activity

is now a serious business, obviously, and it’s growing. And we’ve been scaling it since. But that’s kind of a little summary of my, my, I guess, last six years in the business. But we can always go, you know, back longer for sure. There’s a story to tell.

george grombacher 2:08
Yeah, I appreciate that. So what what, just are you you have entrepreneurial DNA, or I mean, it seems like it’s pretty fearless to what when you’re in college, do whatever it takes to get 75 rental doors? How do you explain that?

Sam Kwak 2:26
Yeah. So I think there is part of part of the entrepreneurial DNA me right. And part of the thought process is, you know, what, if there’s ever time in my life where I can take risks, and even if I if it completely backfires, it’s going to it’s going to be now right and during my college years, because I you know, I have a housing, right? I live in a dorm room, schools providing food, and I, you know, I pretty much have all the safety net right there, right? So I can literally fail in the business, yet, I’d be okay, I’m not, I’m not gonna lose a home, I’m not going to lose my living. So, to me, I thought, you know, I gotta get get started right now. And it was around that when I when I learned about this whole idea of compound compounding and fat, right? So, you know, the whole idea with compound interest and compound effect is the earlier you start, the better your result is at the end. So. So I, you know, I don’t know if I can explain it, in a false sense of, you know, this is what happened. But all I can tell you is that, yes, part of that is in my DNA. You know, I’m very much of a go getter and go giver, and I justified being able to start a business in college years, thinking, Okay, this is now or never, you know, once I get out of college, I find myself a job and get married, it’s gonna get way harder for me to start a business. So that’s prime, that was one of the primary driver as far as why I decided to start then.

george grombacher 3:53
Nice. Well, that certainly does make sense. And that’s a pretty mature thing to be able to do as a college student to be able to say, well, it’s gonna be harder when I’m married, and I’ve got kids and responsibilities and bills and all that stuff. So now’s the time. And if I fail, it’s not that big of a deal, because I could still does the dorm food and hang out here. So yeah, I received it. And now, you know, fast forward, you know, however many years it’s been, you and your brother are working to help people find peace of mind, financial peace of mind. What is that? What does that mean?

Sam Kwak 4:26
Yeah, and it took a while for us to really hone in on our mission and our cause. Because it’s one thing for us to have been, you know, to make money and no, that’s, that’s great. But, you know, my brother and I looked at each other and said, you know, what, what gets us up in the morning? Because if it’s, if it’s just for the money, you know, that’s, it doesn’t seem like it’s a good driving force for us to wake up every morning and feel excited to go to work, right. So. So my brother looked at each other we along the way we’ve been able to help and kind of share and pay it forward. All the knowledge is and everything that we learned in the last seven years, and we literally been able to see a few, quite a few people transform into a success story because of what we’ve been able to do. So we started putting together coaching programs, courses and all that. But that’s, that’s great. One of one of the other ways we help our clients is that we actually help homeowners pay off their mortgage in as early as five to seven years. So we do have a strategy that teaches teaches people that, but really the driving force for that, too, is it’s not that people want to just pay off their mortgage, what we’ve discovered is, there are these 40 and 50 year olds out there that you know, have that are married, have family, and they’re looking at their retirement or looking at their investments are looking at their 401 K or an IRA and thinking, think to themselves, holy smokes 65 is coming around the corner, and I am nowhere near prepared to retire. And it’s kind of like one of those things. It’s not a midlife crisis, but I guess you can call it a midlife crisis in a way. But a lot of people volunteer to fall into the silent panic of, oh, shoot, I gotta catch up, right, I’m running out of time. You know, I look at my friends, I’ve looked at my peers who are really well off, and here I am still working. And the legitimate fear that they have, is that they’re gonna have to continue working past 65. Right, they you know, and I don’t mean this to be disrespectful or insulting in any way. But they don’t want to be that guy at Walmart said 70 years old door greeting, right? Because they just because they don’t have the the financial financial strength to be able to take care of themselves. So that probably is the fear that runs through everyone’s mind. You know, for most people, and we want to help them, sure pay off their mortgage faster, but also be able to help them with things like real estate investments to grow their wealth. And all that ties back to you. Okay, how can we help them be at peace with their finances, not just themselves, but also their family and the continuing generation from there. So that’s what it means for, for us, my brother and I to go out there and our team to help American families achieve financial peace of mind. So that that’s where it all comes from. That’s the story. I

george grombacher 7:30
love it. And that’s a very real thing. I think that while you may look good and blue, that doesn’t mean that you want to wear one of those Walmart vests. And there’s probably other things you’d rather be doing with your time when you’re 6570 years old than working as a greeter. So I think that that’s fair. And and being able to give people peace of mind is one of the most valuable things you can give them so that you’ve discovered and figured out a way to do that that actually works. I think that that is an incredible thing.

Sam Kwak 7:58
Yeah, no, no, notice, I didn’t say we want to we want to help make people make boatload of money, right? It’s one thing to just say that right? Like millions and billions of dollars, but like, some people are just at peace at making $15,000 a month. And you know, they don’t have to be a billionaire, right? They don’t have to have a yacht, they don’t have to have a fancy home. They just want to know that they can live their lives to the fullest extent, without hindrance, right without having to worry without having to necessarily feel like they’re being chased down by the next bill. So that’s, that’s the real goal is not to necessarily make. I mean, I have a lot of clients that want to make millions and billions, but some people don’t sell that. Is that distinction? Right?

george grombacher 8:42
Yeah. Yeah. I think that that makes a lot of sense. And you and your brother have had immense success? And how did you? How, how did you take the information that you’ve learned from doing it when you were a college student, and now essentially scaled that to I don’t know how many people you’ve helped? I’m sure. 1000s? Yeah. How did How’d you figure that out?

Sam Kwak 9:05
Well, so let’s step back a bit more. Because I think the secret to success and scaling and what keeps us tenacious, even today, it really comes from our immigrant background. And this is something I haven’t mentioned yet. But my brother and I, my brother and I are immigrants. We, we’ve, we’ve come here, when we were seven and five years old. So this is back in 1999. So if you do the math, you’ll figure out how old we are. But, you know, we saw our parents move here and they struggle and you know, being a seven and five year old, you really don’t comprehend what struggle means. You can’t conceptualize it. It’s hard to see it. You think everything’s just normal, right? Everything as you see it and feel it and think like this is all just life. You don’t really you don’t really have a frame of reference as far as, oh, we’re poor or we’re not poor or we’re struggling. are not struggling. So, but looking back, right see my my parents struggle, the language barrier, the cultural barrier, but yeah, they they kept persevering and breaking through, you know just even get to this country right the whole process of getting a visa and getting documented. We were denied long, long story short, in a span of two years we were denied 11 times for our visa to get to the United States in the first place. All right, so like one after the other like we apply for a visa we get denied we apply for the visa get tonight like it just we get denial letter after letter. Now, most people in denial number five or four, they throw up their hands were like, You know what, screw this. I’m done. I ain’t going to the United States. I’m sticking around. Right? And I do do what do my best where I am right. But I think my parents understood their mission and purpose to where you know what, I don’t care what it takes to get there. We’re constantly just keep on flying until we get Yes. Right. So basically, seeing that as a seven year old, right? That becomes normal for me. Right? So if you’re a parent listening, watching and listening, like your kids are watching, right, so me, as a seven year old, I watched that and thinking, Oh, if you want what you want in life, you better keep on getting you better keep on banging on the doors and continue to get what you want. Right. So I’ve learned that and of course, through you know, throughout the next decade or two, you know, my family still struggled, we had our challenges and seeing all that that helped me even my belief about perseverance, more concrete, But fast forward. Not, you know, this is what I this is what it comes to come back to all the time this is my mantra is, whatever you want to achieve. If you give enough time and energy, it will be done. It can’t be accomplished. And I would have never thought that my brother and I would have built a multimillion dollar organization. And we’ve been able to help 1000s of people. And I never imagined that but you know, I just kept going right? You know, going back to that mantra, if I give if I gave this enough energy and time and focus, then I know I can achieve it, we can make it work, we’ll figure it out. But I think most people would surrender too quickly, to where they don’t, you know, they work so hard. So and they just need to do like few steps be there a few steps from their goal and achieving it and they just throw up their hands and like, you know, I’m done, I quit. And now it becomes a waste of time for them. Right. So that’s been the secret for me to have grown the organization to now even scale to where we’re at. So yeah, that’s that’s pretty much where I would say that’s the secret thing right there. You don’t have to be the smartest person in the room, you don’t have to be, you don’t have to have the eye, you know, you don’t have to have an IQ of 150. If you can just, if you’re just stupid enough to go and keep on doing it,

george grombacher 12:58
you will achieve it. Just the right amount of stupid is key to keep 100% keep banging your head against the wall day in and day out believing that that hard work pays off because you saw your parents do it. 100% Yeah. I love it. I think that that’s super powerful. And I think it is inspiring. That immigrant mindset sounds like that’s certainly an essential thing. And the perspective that we have the way that we view the world and opportunity and hard work. Sounds like that’s really what informed and and help you to kind of get through the tough times. What’s what’s what’s next for you.

Sam Kwak 13:45
Yeah, so as to you know, just constantly helping more people to break out. And that’s the thing for us is how do we reach more people? And that’s it. You know, I’m a guy with, you know, with a faith background. So I’m always asking God, Hey, give us a bigger megaphone, right gave us. So give us a better team and give us a better megaphone. Like we need to be able to reach for people. And we will love to be surrounded by talented individuals, people have the same passion and the heart to just go serve people. And so that’s, that’s the next thing is how do we surround ourselves with the smartest and the most brightest and the talented people to go out to accomplish this mission and this cause? And how do we reach more people? Whether that’s through social media, or just just my presence? So that’s our next biggest thing. And, yeah, we firmly believe that that that it just needs to be a continuing evergreen mission, even when we’re not around anymore, so yeah,

george grombacher 14:47
I love it. And you and your brother are very, very active and successful on YouTube and other social media platforms. How are you thinking about that? Are you still excited about it? Do you see that landscape changing?

Sam Kwak 15:01
Yeah, I know, there’s a lot of talk right now, especially with like Elon buying Twitter or you know, and social media being really noisy. One thing I’ve learned very quickly, in social media, there’s a lot of noise. And there’s a lot of distraction. You know, I’m guilty of it. Sometimes, I can be on my desk, looking at Facebook videos and YouTube stories, right? So it’s, I gotta like getting myself back into like being focused and being able to work. But one thing, one thing has been clear is that if you gotta be a producer of content, not a consumer of content, right, and so, you know, sure, like my brother, and I will still watch things just to just to kind of be aware of what’s going on. And we can be part of the conversation. But I think the secret to really any product of value is you have to create content. And if you want to be an agent of positive change than positive content, you know, content expire, I think one inspiration we get a lot. Although he’s, he’s not necessarily nice in our space, and like, has almost nothing to do with what we do. But Mr. Beast, right, Jimmy? He’s an inspiration as well, because I think he’s like, close to 100 million subscribers on YouTube now. But he’s, he’s a guy, like he’s an agent for change, right? He’s going out there giving people money and, and doing all kinds of cool charity work. So yeah, so the point I’m making there is be an agent of change, produce content, not just consume it.

george grombacher 16:32
I love it. I think that that might have been a difference making tip. But Sam, the people are ready for that difference making tip? What do you have for them?

Sam Kwak 16:40
Yeah, so I, you know, I keep coming back to the the, you know, you don’t have to, you don’t have to be the smartest person in the world. And I think this is so true, based on my observation of coaching 1000s of people and just looking at the looking at the psychology of okay, what makes certain people tick and go, and what makes people just stay stuck. And a lot of times the people that are stuck, they don’t necessarily have an exterior limiting factor. It’s almost always interior or internal blockage somewhere, it always comes back to One, I’m not good enough to I don’t want to look stupid, that usually comes back to those two. So if you feel like you have a goal, or you want to achieve something, and you have a vision, and it’s you don’t feel that I mean, you feel like something’s stopping you from propelling forward. Although Logically, if you look at your situation, nothing really is, then it’s, you probably have to get into more of an introspective mode and looking at yourself and saying, Okay, do I do I actually feel like, I’m not good enough to be able to do this, right? Is this too good for me? Or am I afraid of looking dumb and stupid in front of people. And believe me, I get what, when, when my brother and I first started the business, there were so many moments where like, we probably looked really dumb and stupid to a lot of people. And so don’t be afraid of looking dumb and stupid. Because you will never achieve anything in life when someone else is someone out, like when you’re afraid of someone out what someone else thinks of you. And so what’s crazy about that also is that person is probably afraid of you and afraid of what you think about them. Right? So while you while you are feel fearful and worried about what that person thinks of you, that person didn’t say anything to you. So like if you get into that mind, shift of frame there, that is freedom, right? Because that now you don’t have to worry about what people think of you. You just do it, you just go you just be who you are, and, and express yourself. Because if you don’t, you know, God gave you a very special talent and a gift and to not share that is the ultimate selfishness in the world. And I That’s right, what I truly believe. So I guess that’s my little golden nugget, if you will, right, for kind of a finished move. But that’s that’s my belief for everyone listening to this, this podcast and help hopefully be inspired by it.

george grombacher 19:11
Well, I think that that is great stuff, but definitely gets Come on. Sam, thank you so much for coming on. Where can people learn more about you? And how can they engage with you?

Sam Kwak 19:20
Yeah, so honestly, I know, I’m gonna sound like an old guy, but God, you can connect me on Facebook. So I do have a Facebook page. And also if you make it to the YouTube, I’ve literally read almost every comment on YouTube, although it’s not really healthy, but I do anyway. So go to one of our videos, comments. Hey, I’ve been on George’s podcast, you know, and I’ll give you a shout out for that.

george grombacher 19:43
of it. If you enjoyed this as much as I did so Sam your appreciation and share today show the friend will also appreciate the good ideas, find them on Facebook and on YouTube. I’ll list all of those and the other spots. You could find them in the notes of the show. Thanks Good Sam.

Sam Kwak 19:58
Thanks, George.

george grombacher 19:59
And And until next time keep fighting the good fight we’re all in this together

Transcribed by https://otter.ai

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