When we asked EO members to share how being a parent and an entrepreneur overlap for them, we heard from Joel Patterson, a member of EO Dallas and founder of The Vested Group. Joel shared his secret for work-life balance.
“As any entrepreneur will tell you, finding true work and family balance is virtually impossible. Like most of us, I’ve wrestled with it for years. I would try all kinds of things, but nothing ever stuck. So I got frustrated. Thankfully, I didn’t give up.
I met Bradley Callow, the founder of Rich Legacy, a few years ago during an EO program for families held at Disney World. I had no idea at the time how much of an impact Bradley and his approach would have on my family and my business. The foundation for the Rich Legacy approach has evolved through recent collaboration with Bradley’s counterpart, Jamie Born. Jamie has a master’s degree in social work from the University of Missouri–Columbia and has played an integral role in the development of the Rich Legacy programs.
Bradley opened my eyes to the fact that my family not only deserves but would benefit tremendously from being viewed in many of the same ways I see my business. I would never have confidence in my employees to achieve the highest potential if I didn’t have clarity around our purpose, values and priorities. The same goes for having regular conversations to determine what we can do to better support them.
The bottom line: If people on my team are rowing in different directions, we don’t get anywhere. My family is no different.
The most important part of Bradley and Jamie’s process is accountability. I attended one of Rich Legacy’s Father-Son Retreats each of the last two summers. While my son and I got an incredible amount out of the retreats, we missed step four—accountability. We were warned that family goals are quickly moved to the bottom of the “list,” and that’s exactly what happened.
We doubled down on accountability earlier this year and invested in a family retreat with Bradley and Jamie. Regrettably, Bradley passed away unexpectedly in May 2019, but his methods and attitude continue to leave a lasting mark on both my personal and professional relationships. We are fortunate that Jamie will be continuing the work of Rich Legacy and these processes and programs will continue to flourish.
Below is one example of these processes I’ve grown to use with my family—it’s not overly complicated, but I learned the hard way execution is everything:
Sounds a lot like how you would approach your business, right? Well, it is. Not only does applying many of the same tools and lenses I use to view my business make it more exciting for me as an entrepreneur, but I get to help my kids understand more about business, and what it is that dad actually does all day.
You didn’t need a business plan 300 years ago because you were the only cobbler, mason or blacksmith in your town. Fifty years ago, you probably could’ve gotten away with not having a meaningful Family Plan. Times have changed.”
As founder of The Vested Group, Joel has more than 20 years of experience in the consulting field. Joel was also a founder of Lucidity Consulting Group, an Oracle consulting and implementation firm. Joel has a degree in Business Administration from Baylor University.