20 May 2024

In today’s episode, Patrick Donley (@JPatrickDonley) sits down with Mike Hoffman, known as Mr. Passive on Twitter to chat about how he is building multiple passive income streams and teaching others to do the same. You’ll learn how wanting freedom motivated Mike to begin building several income streams, how Warren Buffett inspired him to learn about vending machines, how technology is changing the vending industry, his thoughts on how to be most efficient, healthy, and free, why it’s important to pursue hard challenges in life, and so much more!

Mike Hoffman has created over 10 passive income streams for he and his family and is now building a tribe of passivepreneurs to teach others to do the same and find wealth and time freedom for themselves. Mike was a former strength and conditioning coach making $1200/mo when he started downt he passive income rabbit hole. He’s focused primarily on vending machines, real estate, Airbnbs rents, and even Bitcoin mining to create a life of freedom and wealth.



  • How Mike got started pursuing passive income opportunities.
  • How Warren Buffett’s first side hustle inspired him to learn about vending machine.
  • What the biggest hurdles in the vending machine business are.
  • How technology is changing the vending machine world.
  • How to buy vending machines and where to place them.
  • What Mike’s thoughts are on how to be most efficient, healthy, and free.
  • What advice he’d give to his younger self.
  • How he 1031’ed out of his rentals and got involved in Airbnb.
  • Why it is important to pursue hard challenges in life.


Disclaimer: The transcript that follows has been generated using artificial intelligence. We strive to be as accurate as possible, but minor errors and slightly off timestamps may be present due to platform differences.

[00:00:00] Mike Hoffman: yeah, I think now we want to hold on to it because we’ve built a system that is just predictable, both predictable on what we’re going to do with revenue, but predictable with our cogs, predictable with just everything. Like we’ve ironed out the kinks. That’s not to say if someone comes with a ridiculous offer that you wouldn’t say no, but I will say this reminds me so much the self storage kind of craze.

[00:00:24] Mike Hoffman: Like I think right now vending. The market’s definitely not saturated yet just because of the amount of new builds coming out of COVID from commercial real estate and apartments and just a land grab with that. But I think in two to three years, vending will be the private equity snatch up. It’s sector of the market because of cash flow.

[00:00:46] Mike Hoffman: Now you have three years of cash flow, all of that, that people are going to do a lot of consolidation.

[00:00:54] Patrick Donley: Hey guys, in today’s episode, I had the pleasure of sitting down and talking with Mike Hoffman, known as Mr. Passive on Twitter, to chat about how he’s building multiple passive income streams and teaching others to do the same. You’ll learn how wanting freedom motivated Mike to begin learning about passive income, how Warren Buffett inspired him to learn about vending machines, how technology is changing the vending industry, his thoughts on how to be most efficient, healthy, and free, why it’s important to pursue hard challenges in life, and so much more.

[00:01:23] Patrick Donley: Mike has created over 10 passive income streams for he and his family and is now building a tribe of passivepreneurs. To teach others to do the same and find wealth and time freedom for themselves. Mike was a former strength and conditioning coach making 1, 200 a month when he started down the passive income rabbit hole.

[00:01:41] Patrick Donley: He’s focused primarily on vending machines, real estate, short term Airbnb, and even Bitcoin mining to create a life of freedom and wealth. Without further delay, let’s dive into today’s episode with Mr. Passive, Mike Hoffman.

[00:01:59] Intro: Celebrating 10 years. You are listening to Millennial Investing by The Investor’s Podcast Network. Since 2014, we interviewed successful entrepreneurs, business leaders, and investors to millennial generation. Now for your host, Patrick Donley.

[00:02:25] Patrick Donley: Hey, everybody. Welcome to the Millennial Investing Podcast. I’m your host today, Patrick Donley. And joining me in the studio today is Mike Hoffman. Mike, welcome to the show, Patrick. 

[00:02:34] Mike Hoffman: Thanks for having me on here. Super fired up to chat with you today. 

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[00:02:38] Patrick Donley: I’m really excited too. We’ve been talking for about 20 minutes before we even hit record here.

[00:02:42] Patrick Donley: So we’re going to have a good time today. We’re going to talk about passive income and a whole bunch of other things, but I just wanted to hear a little bit about your background, about how you first got started in this journey. Learning about and pursuing passive income opportunities. 

[00:02:57] Mike Hoffman: Yeah, I think it all started when my dad ran a small business back in Iowa and had that entrepreneurial mindset and just grinded 60, 70 hours a week.

[00:03:06] Mike Hoffman: And I was a strength conditioning coach in collegiate athletics. Work in 60, 70 hours, sometimes 80 hours and during the football season. And my monthly take home was 1200 bucks, no joke. And so I just had an aha moment that this wasn’t sustainable, especially since I’m very passionate about spending time with my family and my kids.

[00:03:27] Mike Hoffman: And so that’s when I started to dabble and dip my toe in the water with real estate and then just parlayed that into other strategies and investments over time. 

[00:03:37] Patrick Donley: So you’re making 1200 bucks a month. It works out to be what? A couple of bucks an hour or something like that. I wanted to hear what that first step was.

[00:03:45] Patrick Donley: Were there teachers or books or anything you said? You mentioned your dad was entrepreneurial. He was a vet, but were there other books that inspired you to start looking at other options and opportunities for your career? 

[00:03:59] Mike Hoffman: There definitely was. I remember rich dad, poor dad is a good book that I can remember.

[00:04:04] Mike Hoffman: And then just kinda just seeing others. Bring in income through rentals and stuff and start just to inquire and be curious about how they got into it. And at that stage of my journey, a down payment on a home was very, could be perceived as very risky. So how do I hedge my bets on where to find something that would fit what I could afford and both from the financial side, but also the risk side.

[00:04:30] Patrick Donley: So what year would that have been? Were you listening to bigger pockets to learn about real estate at all or anything like that? 

[00:04:38] Mike Hoffman: I don’t know if they were, yeah, they definitely had an influence for sure. I think they were maybe a blog at the, I don’t remember if the podcast was even around at the time, but I think it was like the chat and the blog at the time.

[00:04:51] Mike Hoffman: they definitely had an influence for sure. 

[00:04:54] Patrick Donley: So what was that first investment? You said you were, you’re a strength and conditioning coach. Talk to me about that first real estate investment, how you got the down payment cobbled together, the money, and just some of the, a little bit about the numbers and what the rental was.

[00:05:08] Mike Hoffman: Yeah, so I was coaching at the time at a university just right outside of St. Louis, and so I was very familiar with the St. Louis market. They had some of the biggest brands there, Anheuser Busch, Purina, and dog food. So it was very, there were a lot of jobs, so I knew there’d be a lot of renters and things.

[00:05:26] Mike Hoffman: So I found a couple of neighborhoods right outside of the downtown radius. Was more of the rental type scenario. And, my first rental was I think 71, 000. So put 14 K down and it was the classic buy it for 70 K rent it for eight 50. And at the time, all I knew was the 1 percent rule. So I was like, Oh, this breaks, this kind of fits the 1 percent criteria.

[00:05:51] Mike Hoffman: So we’re going to be profitable. And then. A couple of years later, parlayed that to another house in the same neighborhood, like 80 K that we were renting for around a thousand bucks. 

[00:06:02] Patrick Donley: So you then after strength and conditioning, didn’t you move then to like the Palo Alto area and got involved in a little higher paying job?

[00:06:10] Patrick Donley: Can you talk a little bit about that next step? 

[00:06:13] Mike Hoffman: Yeah. So when I was a coach in St. Louis, I got an intro to a tech company that we were going to test out at our university with our athletes. That was all about injury prevention. Using data to really quantify where your risks are. This is before wearables.

[00:06:30] Mike Hoffman: This is before rings that tracked my sleep or any of that stuff. So I took a leap of faith and I moved out to California. Again, you want to talk about the cost of living moved to Menlo park, which our startup was not even a block from Facebook and. I was making well below minimum wage for that part of the country.

[00:06:51] Mike Hoffman: And so I did a job at a house ad on Craigslist for room shares. And so we did a five bedroom house with four other strangers that I had no idea who they were and they all became super successful. One of the senior VPs at Apple, like the classic Silicon Valley story of you all just going out there to grind and make it.

[00:07:09] Mike Hoffman: And. Definitely not saying I made it at all, but like some of these guys were even in my wedding and I didn’t even know who they were, but we just had to figure it out. 

[00:07:19] Patrick Donley: Yeah. That’s the great thing about being in a geography like San Francisco or New York, you optimize your chances for meeting people like that, that change the trajectory of your life.

[00:07:29] Patrick Donley: So that’s pretty cool. So you’re, you’ve got two rentals at this point. And you’re doing this software sales job, right? Correct. Yep. And then roughly what was your passive and what were you making roughly per month off of those two things? 

[00:07:44] Mike Hoffman: I think we were probably making 300 bucks per property. Okay. So far all in escrow and property management fee was 600 and we rent them out for an average of, let’s say 900.

[00:07:55] Mike Hoffman: We were probably making $300 a property. 

[00:07:58] Patrick Donley: Okay. So what comes next? You’ve got the two rentals. Tell me about some of the others. Passive income opportunities. How do you get involved in some of the other things you’re doing now? 

[00:08:09] Mike Hoffman: Yeah. So then I was traveling a lot for this company. And so I’d always be sitting in layovers at airports and I, background in human performance, health and longevity or something I’m very passionate about.

[00:08:20] Mike Hoffman: And I’d just go to these vending machines in the airport and I’d be like. I’m paying $4 for water. It’s that same water, that Kirkland signature water you can get for 10 cents at Costco, like someone is making a 390 percent markup on my transactions. So I read an article about vending machines and Warren Buffett’s first investment as a teenager was building a vending route and how he regrets selling it after a year cause he just wanted that quick win and he didn’t understand the power of cash flow at the time.

[00:08:54] Mike Hoffman: So I got into vending right before COVID, and then it was just like a perfect storm of something that was really stable. I didn’t need to have to put 10, 15, 20 grand down on a down payment of a rental. And so I could parlay these cash flowing assets with minimal capital. 

[00:09:15] Patrick Donley: I love that Warren Buffett story.

[00:09:17] Patrick Donley: Our flagship podcast is called We Study Billionaires, which is about Buffett and Munger. And the fact that he started doing, what was it? Pinball machines or what was his pinball? Yeah. Yeah. And so that’s a true story where he regrets selling that off. 

[00:09:32] Mike Hoffman: Yeah. He’s, he got, he started his route when he was 18.

[00:09:35] Mike Hoffman: I think he sold it when I was 19 and a half. And he was like, what’s a classic first you fall in love with the appreciation or the offer, and you don’t really realize the value of that cash flow. He could have maintained it. 

[00:09:48] Patrick Donley: So I want to get into more about learning about the vending machine stuff. I talked to you a little bit beforehand.

[00:09:55] Patrick Donley: I’ve got a son, we’ve got. We bought him a, what I have now found out from listening to some of your interviews, a substandard vending machine, and it’s like a little side hustle for him, but I want to just talk about how you go about the hardest part I would imagine is finding locations for these vending machines.

[00:10:14] Patrick Donley: So can you go into a little bit about that? Like how you’ve overcome those challenges or how you deal with those challenges to find optimal spaces for the machines? 

[00:10:25] Mike Hoffman: Yeah. So there’s kind of two ways to think about it. The first way is like how to quantify or qualify a location. It would be worse putting a vending machine in and on the surface, it’s just foot traffic.

[00:10:39] Mike Hoffman: So a simple way to do it is. Somewhere you drive by in the parking lots full of school, an airport, an apartment complex, any of those would be great locations for a vending machine. And then I think to take it a step further, where a lot of the people that I’m helping now, and even my route, we have a machine being delivered to a gym tomorrow.

[00:10:59] Mike Hoffman: We have another smart machine being delivered on Monday to one of our current properties. The old way of vending is so outdated. I flew in last night from the national vending conference, Patrick, and they have the just walk out technology from Amazon that you’re going to see at Ohio stadium, where you just walk into this little gated thing.

[00:11:20] Mike Hoffman: The gate opens. When you put your credit card in, you go grab your soda and things on the concourse, you walk, the gate will open. And the AI technology just calculates what you grab charges, the card you use to get in and it’s you don’t even talk to anyone, there’s no labor, there’s nothing, there’s no lines for the concessions.

[00:11:40] Mike Hoffman: So that’s here today. And you saw last night in my layover in Denver, they had in the terminal, I went and bought a freaking pack of beef jerky and I didn’t talk to anyone. No one scanned anything. I didn’t even do a self checkout. Like it was, just a full on micro market. a lot, I say all that because nowadays.

[00:11:58] Mike Hoffman: People are like, Oh, is the market saturated with any machines? Yeah, they are old school, big bulky machines that only take cash and you can only track inventory by going by the machine where I can literally track. I have machines in Pennsylvania, Oregon and Chicago that I can track the inventory right from my phone.

[00:12:18] Patrick Donley: So the old way is you’re stocking it yourself. You’re collecting the coins yourself. You said it’s smart, do you call it a smart machine or there’s some terminology that I want to make sure I’m getting, is it a smart vending machine? And you also called it a micro market. Is that right? 

[00:12:35] Mike Hoffman: Yeah. So basically if we just talk about a smart machine, if you go into a 7 11 and you go up to the cooler to grab a Dr.

[00:12:43] Mike Hoffman: Pepper nowadays, these coolers are just the same exact refrigerator as what you ‘ll put in a cooler and a YMCA and. You put your credit card to unlock the door. So it prevents all the theft from the homeless or someone just rating it on the honor system. So you put your credit card, unlock the door.

[00:13:04] Mike Hoffman: There are AI cameras on all four corners of the cooler that will track because when you, for the first ever time you install that thing, you insert. Pictures of every single product you’re going to put in the machine. it maps with those products. So you grab that Dr. Pepper, and let’s say you grab a diet Coke and a monster for one of your boys.

[00:13:25] Mike Hoffman: When you shut that cooler, it’s going to charge you for those three items. So you don’t scan anything. You don’t do any barcode, anything, whatever you grab that card you use to unlock the door, that’s what’s getting charged. So a lot of these are like smart coolers we have right next to college campuses. Thursday night at 2am we’ll get 95 transactions from the kid with the drunk munchies and get 10 bags of burritos.

[00:13:47] Mike Hoffman: I love it. That’s going to be your boys when they go to college, they’re going to have free will to them. On the surface, it looks very simple, but then they got daddy’s credit card. It’s frightening to me. 

[00:13:56] Patrick Donley: So I want to take a little step back. Your first vending machine was not one of these smart machines, obviously.

[00:14:02] Patrick Donley: So let’s get into that a little bit. Let’s say I’m a young guy and I want to have a regular job. I’m looking to earn some more income. How do you get started in something like this? How do you source a machine? How do you find where to place it? Like you said, look at parking lots, but what’s the dialogue and the narrative you have to have with the property owner?

[00:14:22] Patrick Donley: To convince them to allow you to have your machine in their building. 

[00:14:27] Mike Hoffman: Yeah, that’s a really good question. So we can break that down into two parts. It’s okay. Where do I get the machine? And then where do I put the machine and a lot of people? Who has reached out to me? It’s fascinating. They’re like, Oh, I have three vending machines, Mike.

[00:14:42] Mike Hoffman: I want to get to five. And the first question I ask Patrick every time is what’s the revenue of that machine? They’re like, Oh, it’s sitting in my garage. I’m like, why did you get three vending machines in the first place? Because you need to do a, before we do B. So a is the first part of that. And that’s how you convince these people to want to put a vending machine, your vending machine or your.

[00:15:05] Mike Hoffman: Solution and their building. So if we talk about real estate, whether it’s commercial or residential, as there is commercial real estate, it’s going through a massive transition, a lot of negative talk about it. We did a cold email campaign and a big city where I bought a route and we had a hit last week, the tallest concrete building in the country.

[00:15:27] Mike Hoffman: I think it’s like a hundred floors or something. They are only at 40 percent occupancy and they have a grab and go store and the lobby that they want vending solutions for. And there, but that 40 percent occupancy, they’re still tracking, they have 1300 people come through that lobby a day. And so they’re purely viewing this as a, where we want to use this to try to fill occupancy.

[00:15:53] Mike Hoffman: In fact, they even said to us, we don’t even care about revenue share. We’ll give you this full space that a typical grab and go restaurant would pay for. We’ll give you outfits with your stuff for free. We don’t want any rent. We don’t want anything. We just want that amenity. So when we bring Patrick and his business on a tour and we want to get them a cold brew to go up to tour the third floor space or are interested in, we can do that for them.

[00:16:21] Mike Hoffman: So it’s a pure amenity play. And then on the flip side, if we look at residential apartments, look at Columbus, they’re building all these higher. It’s amazing. And the first question I see, I think of here in Oregon is like, who’s going to live in these places? They’re just getting built everywhere.

[00:16:36] Mike Hoffman: And I don’t know if it was coming out of COVID or so the amenity game is it’s crazy if I’m sure you’re going through this with your 18 year old, but you look at these places, they got saunas, they got bowling alleys, they got cold tubs, they got movie theaters, so now they don’t want the traditional vending machine at the Columbus airport in the eighties.

[00:16:55] Mike Hoffman: They want this modern looking bookshelf. That’s just a smart machine. 

[00:17:00] Patrick Donley: Let’s get into a little bit about where you’re buying these machines. And I know that you’ve got this strategy where you’re not buying them up front. So talk to me a little bit about that, like how you’re financing these and like the benefits of how you’re structuring these deals.

[00:17:15] Mike Hoffman: Yeah. And just to be clear, I do buy some up front, if it makes sense, because there’s a whole nother game knowing your background with cost seg studies of depreciation. So we like to add. New machines to our route every year to offset kind of revenue from the years. But I’ll just say this when I first got into the, so I went and visited an apartment for the first ever machine.

[00:17:37] Mike Hoffman: I didn’t even know where to find a machine. I didn’t even have any images to show them. I just went in and asked the manager, front desk gal, Hey, is the manager in? And she’s, Oh yeah, we used to put refreshments in the lobby, but we can’t do that anymore because of COVID. So we need some vending solutions.

[00:17:54] Mike Hoffman: I just went to Google and I typed in vending machine manufacturers, tons of manufacturers in China, as you would. Probably assume, but the software and the backend and the timelines and that would just scare me. I found a very reputable company out of Iowa, which is where I’m originally from.

[00:18:12] Mike Hoffman: So I just called them up. They were like, do you want to finance? Do you want to buy it? I was like, Oh, I’ll finance this first one. No money down. My first monthly payment. So let’s say this machine was 5, 000. So I was like, all right, no money down. Got it. They’re like, okay, we’re going to do 5, 000 over 60 months.

[00:18:31] Mike Hoffman: I think the interest rates at that time, it was like 5%. I was like, okay, my, my monthly payment was 120 bucks. The cool thing is no money down. The first payment on the machine wasn’t due. And that the 60 month clock didn’t start until 90 days after the machine was delivered. So I got it delivered to the location by the manufacturer.

[00:18:53] Mike Hoffman: So I’m not getting a truck. I’m not hauling a wheel, renting a U Haul. I haven’t delivered to the location. I just go there to unwrap it. And then. I had 90 days of sales before my first 130 payment. So naturally, I just started taking that and putting that down towards the principle. Now with my machines that I finance, I can pay them off within a year just based on the profits from that first year of sales.

[00:19:18] Mike Hoffman: And that first machine started doing a thousand bucks a month. And my margins were around 60 percent profit on that first machine. And then now with these smart machines, because as with your snack machine, you’re limited by what fits in the motor. Now these smart coolers and stuff. There are no motors.

[00:19:38] Mike Hoffman: You can do salads. You can do it. Bottle holders. You can do it, I literally do laundry pods. 

[00:19:44] Patrick Donley: Interesting. I’ve got a bunch of questions. What was the name of the company? Because I think we use the same company. It was somewhere in the Midwest. I know that. Witter, 

[00:19:52] Mike Hoffman: But they, that’s the parent company. Eve ending.

[00:19:55] Mike Hoffman: Okay. Did you get a future, a combo or I guarantee you. So they have three different brands under Witter and they’re all based out of Clive, Iowa. 

[00:20:03] Patrick Donley: Yeah, I’m sure that’s who we used. So we made a mistake, which was only buying the dry goods, not having the beverages. Talk to me a little bit about how you’re just sourcing the products, just the nuts and bolts of, where you’re buying the product and then just managing the entire, how many do you have now?

[00:20:20] Patrick Donley: You said, I think at one point I read 11. I’m sure you have more than that now. 

[00:20:24] Mike Hoffman: Yeah. 19, I think with these two being delivered tomorrow and one on Monday will be 21. But I think the first step Is you can get this stuff from Costco, Sam’s club. It’s definitely going to be a little location dependent.

[00:20:39] Mike Hoffman: We have big grocers out here. That’s when co, on the East coast, you got BJs, so you can get it wherever. And then it’s just a natural markup based on that. Like drinks, you can mark up more than snacks, a candy bar. It’s going to be hard to find a Snickers for less than 80 cents. And it’s going to be hard to charge someone to buy a Snickers for more than two bucks.

[00:21:00] Mike Hoffman: So your markup only 55 percent where with a drink. I can get a Celsius from Costco for a dollar 33 and people will pay four bucks and not blink an eye because that’s what they’re going to pay at the seven 11 and they don’t have to drive anywhere to go get it. 

[00:21:14] Patrick Donley: So how are you managing all of these?

[00:21:16] Patrick Donley: You’re not doing it yourself. Are you? 

[00:21:19] Mike Hoffman: No. Yeah. So the backstory that I was really excited about. Patrick is vending so simple that I was really excited. We knew we were going to have kids and I was really excited about building this as that cash flowing path to teach my kids economy one on one. In fact, I have a vending preneur up in Minneapolis where he gives each kid a different vending machine.

[00:21:43] Mike Hoffman: He has 30 machines now out in the wild and each kid has say on products and say on what they want to set the prices to. And then they all compete against each other and all four of his kids are between the ages of 12 and 17. So they’re at that age where this is really fun, where they can compete. So like that was my vision originally was this is going to be something my kids can do.

[00:22:05] Mike Hoffman: And so the first machine, it was, Doing a thousand bucks. Let’s say we profited 600. We were being a little aggressive with our payoff. So let’s just say 500, that kind of paid for our country club membership. And then we started, we found out my wife was going to be pregnant. So then I was like, how do we afford daycare?

[00:22:22] Mike Hoffman: And so then we got our second, third machines and those locations started doing 1400 bucks because now we knew, okay. That’s a good first one, what you’re going through. That’s a good first one, but there’s a lot of things I would have done differently, whether that’s products or the type of machine, like adding drinks.

[00:22:39] Mike Hoffman: So our second, third ones do around 13 to 1, 400 per machine. So now that pays for our. 2k a month in daycare. And then it got to the point where I’m big in the systems and making things passive. So I hired someone at 20 bucks an hour. I was like, look, I don’t care if you do this at 8am or at midnight or a Sunday or a Thursday and he’s done once a week.

[00:23:02] Mike Hoffman: And so he came on at 20 bucks an hour. It cut our margins from 60 percent down to 40%. But then when we got over 10 locations, I actually was able to bring him on full time. 

[00:23:13] Patrick Donley: And did you give him a little bit of equity in the, so how did you structure that? 

[00:23:19] Mike Hoffman: Yeah. So when we first started after 90 days, I was like, Hey, you can do it, we’ll give you 5 percent of profits, no equity.

[00:23:27] Mike Hoffman: And then after I brought him on full time, I gave him 5 percent of equity. That’s over two years. So to protect myself from him leaving early. And now he’s. He’s the reason we keep scaling because the customer service of our current accounts is through the roof. that equity share is only going to go up.

[00:23:46] Patrick Donley: Was this a guy that was already interested in vending machines or how did you find him? Like, how did you find a guy that was like, he’s perfect, it sounds like he’s a perfect fit for you. 

[00:23:56] Mike Hoffman: He’s a home run hire. And we got really lucky because just like you in a college town, I posted an ad on Craig’s list.

[00:24:02] Mike Hoffman: I had 40 applicants in 48 hours, a ton of college kids, a ton of people out of work. And I posted the ad, then everyone inbound, I sent out a response qualifier. The interesting thing is when I grew up in Iowa, that town of 600, where I worked at McDonald’s. My parents were really big into trying to give me opportunities athletically and academically.

[00:24:24] Mike Hoffman: So I commuted 45 miles to council bless Omaha, Nebraska to go to a private high school. This guy drives his kids 45 miles to Eugene so they can go to the private Catholic elementary school. And then he drops them off at eight on Monday and Tuesdays and sits around town until two. So he was looking for a little side hustle while he was sitting around town for six, seven hours.

[00:24:50] Mike Hoffman: And then it just was like a kind of, like in life, there’s these connections that just play out where, if you believe in faith or whatever, like it just played out. And, then within a year, I was like, man, I really got to find a way to bring this guy on full time because he’s just a rock star.

[00:25:08] Mike Hoffman: And, I want him to have even more. Kind of skin in the game. So was able to make an offer that kind of beat out his current job. And then the great thing is now he can pick up his kids every day at two and bending it, you just got to stock it, get the inventory. I don’t care what day of the week it just needs to be done.

[00:25:29] Patrick Donley: Yeah, it doesn’t matter when it’s done. So at this point, have you lost interest in real estate? have you decided to just completely focus on vending and growing that? Or I know you’ve got other different things that you do, but I wanted to hear just what you’re most excited about.

[00:25:45] Patrick Donley: Like what really gets you jazzed? 

[00:25:48] Mike Hoffman: I definitely have not lost in real estate. In fact, whenever my wife and I are watching Netflix, after we get the kids down, she might scroll through Instagram on the phone and I’m looking at short term rentals in Hawaii. And another one, I’m always looking at, in fact, I just went in on a guy.

[00:26:04] Mike Hoffman: On a flight back in December, we just closed on some land in Corvallis, another college town, Oregon state, where we’re going to tear down the home and build up at least four duplexes and then section them off. I get to, he gets to, or if we do 10, whatever, which is a fun project. I did that actually to take a step back.

[00:26:24] Mike Hoffman: I built, I bought a little bit of land by Autzen stadium, about 9, 000 feet. And I built a house in an ADU, but I had them built side by side. Permits wise, they were a house in ADU and then I fenced them off separately and rented them. And so that kind of whole house hacking thing, so I’m always thinking through things, but just with the current climate of rates and where the value of homes are, it’s just, it’s harder to find a good deal than it is to I have a guy I used to mentor that was a college student in Oregon, and he just went into his gym that he works out in every day and went to the manager and says, Hey, your vending machines not stocked ever.

[00:27:03] Mike Hoffman: Can I replace it with my machine? And the guy’s absolutely. And this kid didn’t even know. Like I intro’d him to that company in Des Moines and he’s just figuring it out as he goes. He’s 22 years old. 

[00:27:15] Patrick Donley: That’s awesome. So tell me a little bit about it, it sounds like you’re mentoring people. Like how does that program work?

[00:27:21] Patrick Donley: It’s called what? Vending Preneur, is that what you call it? 

[00:27:25] Mike Hoffman: Vending Preneurs. Yeah. So this is back to the coach in me. And it’s, I’ve taken a lot of courses and even we talked about Nick earlier and even his course and Cody Sanchez’s course, both great people. But I wanted more of it. When I started posting about this, some of my friends were like, Hey, can you help me build a vending route in San Diego?

[00:27:45] Mike Hoffman: Or can you help me build a vending around Salt Lake? And that’s what led into this. My background in software. So you build it once and then not have to repeat yourself. So I built out a whole framework, but there was this individual tailored approach to we’re going to go find your leads in Columbus, put them into an outreach framework, and then we’re going to help you get meetings.

[00:28:06] Mike Hoffman: And then. I’m going to coach you through how to approach those meetings. And so that’s really what I’d help people do now that are interested in vending wherever they live and we do a market analysis, so you’re not going into this blind. Columbus is obviously a market that would do well with vending, but we’ve had people in the middle of Nebraska where there’s 15 leads and they’re all the best Westerns and super eights along I 80.

[00:28:29] Mike Hoffman: So it’s yeah. It’s in a numbers game. You might as well do some Christmas lights or something. 

[00:28:36] Patrick Donley: So how does it work then you’re doing the cold calls? Let’s say I want to do this in Columbus. You’ll do the cold calls for me. And then, once you have a warm lead, you’ll coach me through on how to approach them and talk to them and.

[00:28:50] Patrick Donley: Hopefully land them as a client. 

[00:28:52] Mike Hoffman: Exactly. So there’s two ways to do this. We have the crew that’s all just do it myself, or we give you the leads. We break up the leads into two criteria. All the businesses in your zip codes with a hundred plus employees were all the, let’s just say multifamilies with a hundred plus units.

[00:29:10] Mike Hoffman: Okay. And so again, foot traffic. And then we’ll pull property management info. We’ll pull ownership info and hand that off to you. We have email scripts. You can go run and do it yourself. Cold call yourself. And then about a little over a year ago, we were doing the cold calling for people, the more, the higher the ticket for your type solution.

[00:29:29] Mike Hoffman: I was like, man, the cold calls are like my number one expenses of business. So just like some podcast, vertical integration type stuff, I actually started to build out a cold call center myself. So we have six full time cold callers and these people, when a vending preneur signs up, they pick their business name.

[00:29:48] Mike Hoffman: They set up a business email. Let’s say it’s Buckeyes vending at Gmail, something free and easy. And we’ll actually set up a campaign coming from that email. And then the cold call script. Is coming from your business name. So it’s, Hey, I work for Patrick, the CEO of Buckeyes vending. Do you have vending machines? Oh, you do.

[00:30:05] Mike Hoffman: Are you happy with it? Oh, you’re not. Oh, they don’t stock it often. Why don’t we have Patrick come by and show you what we can offer. 

[00:30:13] Patrick Donley: That’s awesome. You’ve got a lot going on and we were going to go into some of these other different, passive streams that you’ve got going. But how are you managing your day to day, like your time management and that kind of thing?

[00:30:24] Patrick Donley: Like, how are you just structuring an average day? 

[00:30:28] Mike Hoffman: Yeah. So this is a whole, if I think of my three passions, I got at the end of the day, they all lead to freedom of more time. So my family is number one, and then I got passive income to be able to spend time with my family. And then I got my.

[00:30:46] Mike Hoffman: What I call health and human performance. And to me, that’s everything from efficiency, mental focus, like physical, all of those things that I went to school for. I’m huge into batching things, whether that’s Wednesdays or my kind of my podcast days or every morning I try to do something physical to break a sweat, whether that’s a run or,

[00:31:10] Patrick Donley: aren’t you into rucking?

[00:31:12] Patrick Donley: Are you into, 

[00:31:13] Mike Hoffman: yeah. Rucking this morning with my dog. And then, So yeah, there’s always that. And then there’s the family time. Usually I try to do an hour of deep work before we call it. The fire alarm goes off in the house and all the kids are running around or the two kids are running around just like screaming and whatever.

[00:31:30] Mike Hoffman: And then I dropped my daughter off at daycare and then I just kind of got blocked. Sections of the week that are really efficient. I try to have my calls in the afternoon when I’m out hitting balls or something. 

[00:31:43] Patrick Donley: So are you then, do you work then from home or do you have an office where you keep all the product and that kind of thing?

[00:31:51] Mike Hoffman: Yeah. So I have an office where this is all white boards and then I share a door. So I have a two room office and the other room is for my local route vending business partner. So he can, We have a whiteboard in there where he’s tracking all the sales. We can store products there.

[00:32:08] Mike Hoffman: All of that. 

[00:32:10] Patrick Donley: Got it. I wanted to take a little step back. You were talking about how each vending machine would pay for a certain thing, like your club membership, your golf membership or daycare or whatever. Alan Corey, who was a real estate guy, had a similar idea where he would do it with real estate rentals, but he would call it like his internet house or his electric, like the electric bill house.

[00:32:29] Patrick Donley: Yeah. he likes to think of each house as paying for this expense. And it’s kind of a cool way to think about it. 

[00:32:37] Mike Hoffman: Yeah, that’s exactly. and that’s where, I’ll be the first to say, Venny’s not get rich quick. It’s a parlay game. It’s just like your first rental isn’t going to cashflow enough for you to leave that nine to five, but you gotta start somewhere.

[00:32:50] Mike Hoffman: That’s the same thing with this as well. And for us, we’ve been blessed that it doesn’t take up much time. Even when I was doing it myself before hiring Eric, it’s. It didn’t take much time. I got to go stock on my way to the core. So I go to the gym on my way to the gym. It’s not, I have to block off. And then guess what?

[00:33:07] Mike Hoffman: If you forget or you’re on vacation for two weeks and you don’t make it there, if you run out of Snickers, it’s not like a rental where if the toilet breaks, you gotta have a plumber over there. Now you run out of Snickers. They’re going to buy a freaking Twix. 

[00:33:20] Patrick Donley: So I wanted to ask about your exit strategy.

[00:33:24] Patrick Donley: I seem like in biz by selling vending routes for sale all the time. Are you going to be like Warren Buffett and regret this if you sell it? Or what is your exit strategy? Will you hold onto this? For the cash flow or what’s the endgame? 

[00:33:38] Mike Hoffman: Yeah, I think now we want to hold on to it because we’ve built a system that is just predictable, both predictable on what we’re going to do with revenue, but predictable with our cogs, predictable with just everything.

[00:33:50] Mike Hoffman: Like we’ve ironed out the kinks. That’s not to say if someone comes with a ridiculous offer that you wouldn’t say no, but I will say this reminds me so much of the self storage kind of craze, like I think right now vending. The market’s definitely not saturated yet, just because of the amount of new builds coming out of COVID from commercial real estate and apartments and just a land grab with that.

[00:34:13] Mike Hoffman: But I think in two to three years, vending will be the private equity that snatch up this kind of sector of the market. Because the cashflow now you have three years of cash flow, all of that, that people are going to do a lot of consolidation. 

[00:34:30] Patrick Donley: So on these machines, I’m just thinking on our own, we’ve got a credit card reader.

[00:34:34] Patrick Donley: Is that like where most of the sales come from? Most people don’t carry a bunch of cash. So is it mostly credit cards that are how people are making the purchases? 

[00:34:42] Mike Hoffman: Yeah, it’s totally dependent on the location. We have a pumpkin farm. Manufacturing is done by Corvallis and it’s a bunch of Hispanic workers that don’t have smartphones or they love cash, just more of their culture that really surprised us because it was more of a modern micro market where we would typically install a kiosk.

[00:35:03] Mike Hoffman: That was a card only, but they insisted they actually wanted a cash machine. So it was interesting when it wasn’t hard, they have those two. It’s just, they’re definitely more outdated and not the norm. 

[00:35:16] Patrick Donley: So let’s get into some of the other things you’ve got going on. Can you share a little bit, some of the other passive income streams that you’re doing to, again, like your whole goal is building freedom for your family and just time.

[00:35:27] Patrick Donley: Talk to me about some of the other things you’ve got going on. 

[00:35:30] Mike Hoffman: Yeah, so I got some Bitcoin mining. So that’s out of sight, out of mind. I hired a third party farm, a mining farm right outside of Philadelphia and got some meanings depending on where Bitcoin is. I get 500 worth of Bitcoin sent to my wallet every month.

[00:35:48] Mike Hoffman: So that’s just been, that’s been three years off, I don’t even look at what it is month to month. I just know it’s a set amount of Bitcoin every month. 

[00:35:57] Patrick Donley: And then do you keep that in Bitcoin or do you tell me about that? 

[00:36:01] Mike Hoffman: yeah, no, I haven’t touched it. That’s great. It’s just been mining and it’s just been completely out of sight.

[00:36:06] Mike Hoffman: I’m lucky enough. I’ve had to touch it. 

[00:36:09] Patrick Donley: How is Bitcoin having or having, however, what people say in different ways, but. How has that affected your income? 

[00:36:17] Mike Hoffman: It doesn’t have much cause it’s just such a, to me, it’s a dividend and it’s a small part of your overall portfolio. Like I think that would probably, but the other, on my kind of my trading portfolio and stuff, I definitely have a lot more Bitcoin.

[00:36:34] Mike Hoffman: cause I do think about having and where things are going and it’s just. It’s an interesting time. So I do have more in that kind of portfolio for sure that the mining is more just set it and forget it. I don’t even, I haven’t even looked what’s happened since pre having to now with that, cause it’s such a small, it’s 500 bucks.

[00:36:54] Mike Hoffman: I don’t just. 

[00:36:56] Patrick Donley: So you mentioned trading. Do you, is that part of the, some of your activities too, is like doing different trades or. Or are you more of a buy and hold kind of guy, like with Bitcoin? 

[00:37:07] Mike Hoffman: That’s a good question. You’re going to expose me a little bit here. I do have a little, don’t tell my financial advisor this, but I do have a little slush fund. I guess you could say that’s Probably more gambling than anything in Robin Hood, where I believe in Apple and I’m going to buy some Apple on the dip and write it out. It’s not financially sound. And then I, that’s way out of our kind of automatic deposit or monthly paycheck takes 10 percent out to a different account. And Schwab, this is more of my fun money on my Robin Hood app. If we have leftover money, I’ll just Take it in there and align it with companies. I believe that I’ve worked in software with the government for a long time. So I’m very familiar with Palantir. So like I know Palantir is fundamentals on the inside where people are going off there. Project. So like those companies on the dip, I’ll just buy some more.

[00:38:03] Patrick Donley: Yeah, that’s fun to do. So I wanted to hear a little bit about like just words of wisdom, like people trying to get something like this started. What are just like, what would you have told your younger self? getting started into this? What do you wish you would have known? Or what kind of. Advice from an older guy.

[00:38:19] Patrick Donley: Would you have wished somebody would have told you to make your journey and path a little easier? 

[00:38:24] Mike Hoffman: I think the first thing is to be curious and take your shot. And I know that sounds so obvious, but a perfect example in sales. And I didn’t grow up wanting to be in sales. I got into it because I think naturally as the startup evolved in Palo Alto, I was a good listener and I asked a lot of questions cause I was curious and a lot of times the best salespeople, and I think Patrick, it comes back to your comment earlier of you have a guy coming on the show in a couple of days and a big name and, but at the end of the day you took your shot and you got him on that show.

[00:39:01] Mike Hoffman: And I think I remember the first time I ever reached out to Cody Sanchez. And at the time I was like, Oh my gosh, that’s Cody Sanchez. And then everyone has a cool story and. You can’t get in the door without trying to open it. And I remember the first time that tech startup I worked at, I sent a cold email to Mark Cuban and he responded right away and I was like, Mark Cuban, yeah, because he, his assets are these athletes to keep them healthy on the court for the Maverick.

[00:39:27] Mike Hoffman: I just went in. And so I’m a huge believer in curiosity and professional persistence because nine times or nine out of 10 people that say they’ll send you a follow up won’t do it. It’ll be that one that does, especially in today’s world with AI and like the personalization piece of this, there’s going to be such the cream that is going to rise to the crop.

[00:39:47] Mike Hoffman: The reason I got a bad job in Palo Alto when I was making 1200 bucks as a strength coach in St. Louis was because I was the only candidate they interviewed that mailed a thank you note to the CEO. And how many people do that these days? 

[00:40:01] Patrick Donley: Nobody does it. No one. Yeah. I’m a huge believer in just handwritten, simple notes.

[00:40:06] Patrick Donley: Just makes a huge impact on people because 

[00:40:09] Mike Hoffman: nobody does it. Even like finding deals like real estate deals. I have so many friends that find good deals by doing campaigns or going by property and then they have a little note card and they’ll just write a little handwritten personalized saying and put it in the mailbox.

[00:40:23] Patrick Donley: So you’ve got the, you’ve got the Bitcoin mining, you’ve got the vending machine You’ve got a couple other things. You’ve got an Airbnb now, so you’ve had the two rentals, but you 1031 those. So tell me about the next steps in real estate, what you did. 

[00:40:40] Mike Hoffman: Yeah. So we had the two rentals in St.

[00:40:42] Mike Hoffman: Louis, one was around 70 K and yeah, 80 K. So we, during COVID and the appreciation and flux, we were able to 1031 both of them, we got over a hundred K on both. So good returns. And we put it on. 

[00:40:55] Patrick Donley: You had a hundred, 

[00:40:57] Patrick Donley: K in capital gains. Is 

[00:40:58] Mike Hoffman: What did you say? Not a hundred K. the one, the 70 K one, I think we sold for one 20.

[00:41:03] Mike Hoffman: So we had 50 K. It was only five years, maybe four or five years. So whatever that difference is. But we 1031 that to a, by that time we had moved to Oregon. So we bought a condo in Bend. It’s called sun river resort, if anyone’s ever heard of it. But that was fun because it was two hours from where we live.

[00:41:23] Mike Hoffman: So we could go visit and the non peak times. Plus it was a mountain town and it had three golf courses. So it rented out in the summer. For those people that wanted to do summer stuff. And then it had skiing in the winter at Mount bachelor. So we’d always go visit in the fall after labor day or before Memorial day in the spring and those non peak times.

[00:41:43] Mike Hoffman: So it was the best of both worlds that rental. We bought for two 50 and we sold it for four 25, two years later. This is like the whole COVID everyone’s going remote. Everyone’s moving out of the bay and moving to Oregon and the band is exploding. And so we bought a rental in a Tampa site unseen. Oh, I really wanted to find a market that wasn’t.

[00:42:06] Mike Hoffman: I just didn’t feel good about how things were appreciating so fast. So I wanted to find a more stable market that had business. I knew there would be a huge military base. And so those short term rentals would be a lot of not just tourists, but more of the stable. I’m traveling for work to Tampa and bringing my wife and kids.

[00:42:24] Mike Hoffman: So we need a pool or something like that. And that house. We haven’t, we’ve had it three or four years now and it hasn’t done less than a hundred grand a year and rental revenue. And I would consider last year a down year and it did 120 K. 

[00:42:40] Patrick Donley: And it’s Airbnb only. And you bought it sight unseen, huh? How did you do that?

[00:42:46] Mike Hoffman: Yeah. So it was interesting. I was using those sites Zillow for short term rental. So air DNA and a Rabu was a free tool at the time. And I’d find a market, let’s say Clearwater beach. And I’m like, okay, I think we want, there’s not very many four bedroom rentals on the market. So we’re going to focus on four bedroom rentals.

[00:43:05] Mike Hoffman: Then I go to Zillow. Find a four bedroom rental and I would plug it into Taboo and I was like, Oh, wow, they have a four bedroom rental three streets away that ‘s saying it’s doing 150 K. And they have this true story. It said that. And I was like, there’s no way a rental is 150 K. So on Taboo, they had the Airbnb link of all the properties.

[00:43:24] Mike Hoffman: So I went to the Airbnb link. I messaged the property manager and I was like, Hey, we’re thinking about buying in this market. Do you want our business? And so she said, yes. And I said, then you need to send me the revenue verification of the last two years. And sure enough, The w two or the w whatever form of the revenue, the K one or whatever show that it did 150 K and I was like, wow, that’s awesome.

[00:43:50] Mike Hoffman: And that’s when, yeah, we went into it. We had a realtor we trusted down there and my sister lives in Tampa. So we go there usually once a year and yeah, sight unseen. I furnished the whole thing off Facebook marketplace without ever visiting. It was crazy. 

[00:44:05] Patrick Donley: And you’re managing it completely remotely, right?

[00:44:09] Mike Hoffman: Yep. Oh, I have that gal I met through that DM on Airbnb. I have her main unit. So it’s so passive. I trust her so much now where I’m like, look, if it’s less than a three, a 300 fix and repair, I don’t even want to know about it. 

[00:44:25] Patrick Donley: So as we’ve said, you’ve got a lot going on. What’s your biggest bottleneck right now, or your biggest challenge?

[00:44:30] Patrick Donley: Like I heard you talk about how, if you can’t go away for three months, And your business has grown the problem. So tell me a little bit about what your biggest challenges are in managing all this. 

[00:44:42] Mike Hoffman: There’s always the, if my kids would sleep more, yeah, sure. And the one year old, cause I know I always would laugh because you always would, I’d always coach people up on the importance of sleep.

[00:44:52] Mike Hoffman: And then I, what I didn’t realize until we had kids is like, when you know the importance of sleep and you still can’t get that whole angle, but. I think the challenges are always evolving. But the big thing for me, if you come back to the book we talked about earlier to buy back your time, is I’m very big into delegating and then just letting them run with it and just not trying to be that bottleneck for them.

[00:45:14] Mike Hoffman: So like a perfect example is we have this vending machine being delivered tomorrow. Like I wanted everything to be smooth. So they weren’t calling me for the delivery. They were calling my operator. Like basically. I want these guys to move out. And it’s funny with my vending or coaching program. We made two big hires at the end of March and I was a little nervous because we’re very lean and our EBITDA is very healthy.

[00:45:37] Mike Hoffman: I was like, man, these are two strategic hires. The first months that I let them run the show and I removed myself from the business, Patrick, guess what happened? We had our best month ever. So like the back to the comfort crisis, Mike Leaser talks about this a little bit too, if you can, and even Dan Martell and so if you can remote, you should do an exercise where you remove yourself from your business for at least four weeks and see what happens.

[00:46:02] Patrick Donley: I love it. I’m trying to think about it. I don’t know. I need to get some systems in place. I think 

[00:46:07] Mike Hoffman: yeah. Yeah. that Dan’s book will help you with that. That’s great. 

[00:46:11] Patrick Donley: Yeah, that one’s buying back your time. I think we talked about that prior to the interview starting. So that’s buy back your time by Dan Martell.

[00:46:17] Patrick Donley: And then the other one was the comfort crisis, right? 

[00:46:21] Mike Hoffman: Yeah. I’m Mike Leaster on the surface. It’s definitely not a motivational book. It’s not a Jocko discipline that equals freedom or anything like that. It’s more of a taking this concept of being uncomfortable leads to gross and using real world case studies.

[00:46:36] Mike Hoffman: Like even the military, they’re known to rock so many miles every morning, but why, and so they go back to the 1800s on. Why did they start rucking? What does rucking do to your physical health? Your mental health, like all of the cold plunges. That’s a perfect example. Like going on four, seven day Miyagi type trips, whether that’s like a hunting thing in the backwoods, that’s what the story is built around.

[00:47:00] Mike Hoffman: But people that sign up for a marathon and haven’t ran a mile in three years. Like doing these uncomfortable things that at least once a year that kind of get you to, okay, wow, you thought this was possible when in reality it was that. 

[00:47:16] Patrick Donley: Yeah. I interviewed Scott Young, who’s an author. He wrote a book called Ultra Learning and he just came out with a book called Get Better at anything.

[00:47:24] Patrick Donley: And he talked about it, he did a Ted talk and he basically did this MIT challenge where he did. The computer science program or the entire program in a year. So a four year degree at MIT, he did it in a year for the cost of the textbooks, which was like 1500 bucks. And then he did another language challenge where every three months he was learning another language and he did not speak English at all.

[00:47:47] Patrick Donley: He and a buddy did this. They would go to South Korea, China. I think they went to Brazil and then maybe France or Spain. So, Four different countries. But like that, he asked that question, if this is possible, what else could you do in your life? Once you do these hard challenges, it then becomes what else is possible for my life.

[00:48:05] Patrick Donley: If I can do something this hard, like where’s the limit. 

[00:48:08] Mike Hoffman: Yeah, and this is something I keep coming back to as a dad and a father. And when I was coaching and then watching my wife be a coach, you could tell the kids that we’re going to go to the next level, whether that’s playing professionally, whether that’d be successful when they graduate, just by knowing their parents.

[00:48:29] Mike Hoffman: Really? And that just fascinated me. Like I could literally have a conversation with parents and just know how their kid, like it was just in Dan Hurley, the Yukon coach. So they just won, I think two, two national titles in a row, but there’s a video that went viral online after they won and he’s The first thing we do when we bring a kid on a recruiting visit is we watch how they interact with their parents.

[00:48:52] Mike Hoffman: Do they respect their parents? Do they open their door? The door, we’re going on a tour of an apartment. Do they open the door for their mom? Like, how do they talk to their mom and dad? Is it like, Leave me alone. I, and I was just like, Oh my gosh, this light bulb just came on. And it was just, it’s amazing.

[00:49:10] Mike Hoffman: I’d make for myself, I’d like to think back to my parents and all the discomfort. I showed cattle and my dad would make me get up at five in the morning to go wash these cows. And I’d hate every minute of it, but now it’s, that is why I get up at 5 AM now, that’s when you get all the hard things done.

[00:49:25] Patrick Donley: That’s fascinating about interacting with the parents. And by doing that, you can tell how the kid will do if he’ll advance to the next level or I’ve, I haven’t seen that Dan Hurley video. I’ll have to check that out. 

[00:49:37] Mike Hoffman: I’ll send it to you. It’s really good. And then Don Staley parlayed that next.

[00:49:40] Mike Hoffman: And she’s we won’t much a kid if she, if the classic mom, daughter dynamic, if she won’t respect her mom on the visit and as. and I was like, wow, this is a, and both of those teams, I think South Carolina actually won the whole team. Yeah. They 

[00:49:54] Patrick Donley: beat Iowa. 

[00:49:55] Mike Hoffman: Yeah. 

[00:49:56] Patrick Donley: That’s awesome.

[00:49:57] Patrick Donley: What other traits have you mentioned? Curiosity. What are some other traits that you see in the people that you’ve worked with on the vending machines? Like specifically, That, that you see in like that guy’s going to do well. 

[00:50:10] Mike Hoffman: Yeah. We’re to the point now where we’re trying to within our community, like who are, what we call our athletes, like who are the ones I just want to go to that next level.

[00:50:20] Mike Hoffman: And I don’t know if it’s initiative or it’s just those people that. You talk about the growth mindset and the Carol Dweck. And when we were at Stanford, it was a really popular book at that time, partly because that’s where she was at. But it’s just that constant growth mindset. And it’s just so interesting.

[00:50:39] Mike Hoffman: And I’m not talking like. They’ll go read 50 books or listen to 50 of your podcasts. They actually take what they learn and put it into action. Like you were just talking about the gentleman you interviewed that traveled the world going to learn language. Now I’m like, man, I want to listen to this episode and then where can we go travel and put this into action?

[00:50:58] Mike Hoffman: Cause listening or learning it is one thing, but. Putting it in action as the next. And we see that all the time with our students we can schedule the meeting for Patrick at this high rise in Columbus, but he’s got to go, I can’t fly there and do the meeting for him. And then how do you parlay that meeting to the next meeting?

[00:51:15] Mike Hoffman: Or how do you ask that guy? After that, the meeting is about to end. Hey, do you have any other properties in Columbus? Would they be interested in this? It’s like a constant, curious, gross mindset that I don’t know. It’s just interesting. 

[00:51:29] Patrick Donley: Yeah, it is interesting. We’ve got that Carol Dweck mindset. My wife is a therapist I mentioned beforehand.

[00:51:37] Patrick Donley: And there, I think the two mindsets, one is just a fixed mindset and one is a growth mindset. The fix is you just don’t really think that much as possible. The growth mindset is anything’s possible. I just gotta get out there and try different things. 

[00:51:51] Mike Hoffman: Yeah, exactly. And yeah, it’s just that if you’re comfortable, it’s never good.

[00:51:56] Mike Hoffman: You look at Saban, Belichick, none of those athletes were ever comfortable working for them. And as much as that can be a little frustrating, that’s also why. Tom Brady is who he is. 

[00:52:08] Patrick Donley: Yeah, exactly. Exactly. I can talk about this kind of stuff. I love sports psychology and books and all this. I could talk forever here.

[00:52:17] Mike Hoffman: And that’s what’s fascinating to me with golf. I’m a, I didn’t, I never grew up golfing and now that we’re fortunate enough to Belong to a club and stuff, the game of golf and that mental you on the gross mindset, the inner game of tennis. Yeah, I’ve 

[00:52:31] Patrick Donley: got, I just was given that book, the inner game of tennis by Tim Galway.

[00:52:36] Patrick Donley: Is that not Galloway. 

[00:52:37] Mike Hoffman: Yeah. Think about it. We used to train a bunch of baseball athletes when we were building this tech in Palo Alto. So there’s a bunch of pros from Stanford and Cal that would come back in the off season to train. And we would use their data to build out our machine learning models.

[00:52:49] Mike Hoffman: Yeah. And it was just fascinating to me. An all star baseball player will fail seven out of 10 times and make the all star game. think about that. Mitch Hanegar was the starting right fielder for the Mariners. He made it to the all star game because his batting average was over 300. And yet they go through these slumps and like life.

[00:53:08] Mike Hoffman: And even your business is the game of baseball. You just have to show up every day and get through those trials and tribulations because everyone else won’t, they’ll just give up. 

[00:53:18] Patrick Donley: Yeah, that is an unfortunately very common thing that I, people would just expect success right out of the gate and that generally it’s not going to happen.

[00:53:28] Patrick Donley: Yeah, you got to take your swings and this has been fun. Any other people or books that have really influenced you along the way or people that you try to model or emulate? 

[00:53:39] Mike Hoffman: There’s not necessarily people that I would probably try to emulate. I think I’m at that stage in life where you’re not going to please everybody, whether that’s people that want more of your time, or you just have to prioritize what you believe in and take a stand.

[00:53:54] Mike Hoffman: That’s like even Nick Huber, I laugh at how many people. Roast him on Twitter and he’s never going to win any of those arguments. But like you look at Warren Buffett, you look at Phil Knight, if you’ve ever read Shoe Dog, you look at Elon, then, you look at Jeff Bezos, you look at all these entrepreneurs.

[00:54:13] Mike Hoffman: They always just took a stance on something. They don’t try to play both sides. They try to understand the other side, but they have this kind of belief. And that’s what, I look at Cody and Nick on this kind of boring biz side and they’ve just taken a stance. It’s, and to me, that’s just, I really respect that because they’re not trying to please everybody.

[00:54:34] Mike Hoffman: They’re not trying to live in the middle. There’s no politics game. They might not know everything, but here’s why they take this stance. Taking the stand they’ve taken. So for me, I’m really, Elon’s really intriguing to me. I just read that PayPal mafia book. Oh, did you? It’s the straight success rate of all those guys, Peter Teal.

[00:54:52] Mike Hoffman: Oh, it’s just. But all of them, they were probably part of my language, they were probably dicks to a lot of people and some employees hated working for them. But now you look at that book and they interviewed people that were fired by Elon or pissed off by Peter and all of them are like. Yeah, that’s why they’re uber successful.

[00:55:10] Mike Hoffman: They were so focused on the stands. 

[00:55:14] Patrick Donley: You’ve got all this stuff going on. Do you ever, and I, am in the same boat where I’ve got a lot of different things going on. Do you ever feel like you need to just focus on one thing to get really good at just one thing? 

[00:55:26] Mike Hoffman: Yeah, I was going through this phase probably six, even when I started Twitter, I was only on Twitter.

[00:55:33] Mike Hoffman: What was that? September of 2022. So not very long. And my whole idea was passive income streams and this whole let’s build a Disneyland of basically take bigger pockets, but instead of just real estate, let’s like Patrick comes over to the cashflow kingdom and it’s like laundromats, car washes, all of that.

[00:55:54] Mike Hoffman: And then this guy goes over to the crypto kingdom. 95 percent of my questions that people would reach out about were vending. And so to me, it really opened my eyes. I was like, what am I trying to do here? And, you probably see this with your brand, with the podcast and kind of, you realize this whole shotgun approach is not the best way of focus.

[00:56:15] Mike Hoffman: And. So for me, yeah, it’s been really fascinating. I’m totally open to other income streams and other investment ideas. I just did an investment project with a group that’s building oil loop stations in Florida, but it’s more of the passive, like I’ll pay a little more premium capital for their time to take it on and I trust them.

[00:56:37] Mike Hoffman: So that’s the focus for me has been more on learning how to say no. Probably more than anything. 

[00:56:46] Patrick Donley: Yeah, that is a good thing. Like the, to don’t list, I think Tim Ferriss calls it like, don’t stop doing these things 

[00:56:53] Mike Hoffman: or if you’re going to take on something, what are the three things you’re going to, offload?

[00:56:59] Patrick Donley: Yeah. It’s interesting that people wanted to hear mostly about vending. Why do you think that was? 

[00:57:05] Mike Hoffman: Cause I think it’s so real. you talk crypto, you talk any of these kinds of things, you talk whatever, let’s say self storage, at the end of the day, everyone’s using a vending machine. Everyone’s gone through an airport, everyone’s been in a rush to, even last night, I landed at midnight, my ear was still clogged, and right when I got off the plane, literally at the gate, was a vending machine, and I went and bought a pack of gum.

[00:57:29] Mike Hoffman: Just to yeah, it was a 3 big red pack. I was like, what in the heck? This is 10 cents off Amazon, but I need it now. I can’t hear out of my right ear. 

[00:57:40] Patrick Donley: Yeah. Mike, this has been a lot of fun. I really have enjoyed this. Enjoy your time and your insights. You’re a super smart guy doing a lot of interesting things and helping a lot of people along the way.

[00:57:50] Patrick Donley: Is there anything that we didn’t get a chance to touch on or talk about that you wanted to? 

[00:57:55] Mike Hoffman: No, Patrick, this has just been an honor. Yeah. Your brand speaks for itself. So just grateful that you brought me on here and yeah, you’re what you’re doing, what you’re about, huge fan. So again, thanks for having me on.

[00:58:09] Patrick Donley: Yeah, my pleasure. How can people learn more about what you’re up to? Talk to us about different ways they can get in touch with you. 

[00:58:16] Mike Hoffman: Yeah, if they’re interested in the vending machine route, we have a website, vending preneurs. com really built around this whole idea of people that were teachers or anything in the world, sales reps, or just wanted a side hustle, stay at home moms.

[00:58:32] Mike Hoffman: Whatever that wants some extra income so they can go through there. If they want to learn more, get a ton of case studies of all firefighters, et cetera. And then mrpassive. com, I do have a newsletter that goes out every kind of Friday and then I’m on social media. I’m probably on Twitter the most, but I’ll definitely try to get some of this content once it gets released out there on some of my other channels as well.

[00:58:54] Mike Hoffman: Cause I do have a little bit of a falling on some of those other ones, but Twitter is Probably my most real time off the hip kind of content. 

[00:59:03] Patrick Donley: Yeah. Yeah. That’s how I found you. We’re just on Twitter. So yeah, just again, thanks, Mike. I appreciate your time and insights here today. Yeah. Thank you, Patrick.

[00:59:11] Patrick Donley: Good to be on here. Okay, folks, that’s all I had for today’s episode. I hope you enjoyed the show and I’ll see you back here real soon. 

[00:59:19] Outro: Thank you for listening to TIP. Make sure to follow Millennial Investing on your favorite podcast app and never miss out on our episodes. To access our show notes, transcripts, or courses, go to theinvestorspodcast.com. This show is for entertainment purposes only. Before making any decision, consult a professional. This show is copyrighted by The Investor’s Podcast Network. Written permission must be granted before syndication or rebroadcasting.


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