Create Your Success: Bad Birdie

After years of being on Shark Tank, I’ve seen many different types of people come through the tank. As a Shark, we’re not just investing in the business – we’re investing in the entrepreneur. We look for their passion, knowledge, preparation, and charisma. In light of my newest book, You Don’t Have to Be a Shark I sat down to interview some of my favourite entrepreneurs. They each have their own unique stories of sacrifice, failure, and accomplishment. What advice do they have for a new generation of people chasing their dreams? Read through our conversation below and get inspired to #CreateYourSuccess.
When Jason came into Shark Tank with Bad Birdie, I knew that he is the kind of entrepreneur who is never going to give up. I’ve always said that the best way to succeed in business is by solving a problem. Well, Jason saw a type of gap in the sport of golf – plain golf shirts! This is the laser focus I’m always talking about – Jason didn’t try to do it all. Instead, he focused on this gap started by putting his efforts into making one fun, quality piece of clothing. I’m very excited to see everything that Bad Birdie has in store for their future – I have no doubt that Jason (and Bad Birdie) will make a significant impact on the sport of golf.
 To your success,
robertsignature
 
 
 

Bad Birdie

Business Owners: Jason Richardson
Location: Los Angeles, CA
 
So how do you stay motivated?
I like to compare working at Bad Birdie to a CrossFit class – it’s hard, sweaty, feels like you want to quit sometimes – but you always come out stronger every class. The opportunity to continually be challenged like that is ultimately what motivates me. I’m addicted to pushing things forward to grow myself and the business.
Boy does that sound familiar ! I love how you’re ambitious and keep pushing the ball forward. So why start a business for golf clothing?
Golf has the stigma of being boring, rich, and overly proper, and you know what? That stigma isn’t really accurate. I think most golfers play to hang out with their buddies, be outdoors, and have some friendly competition. No companies had spoken to that side of golf and that’s where I saw an opportunity for Bad Birdie to come in.
There aren’t a lot of golf clothing companies out there like yours. I can spot a Bad Birdie shirt on the green all the way from the tee box ! Now let’s talk about Shark Tank – can you share what you learned from the experience?
  1. Never give up – The process to get on Shark Tank took a lot of work and time. There were plenty of opportunities to back out where I felt too overwhelmed to actually pitch on the show but I’m so glad I pushed through that and was able to close a deal!
  2. Be prepared – I spent a ton of time rehearsing the pitch and running through different scenarios. All of that practice helped me to close the deal on the show.
  3. There’s always room to grow – I prepped many questions and responses but immediately after walking out of the Tank, I realized I had so much more room to grow on how I talk about Bad Birdie, how to negotiate, how to think about the business differently, etc.
How did you know that this is what you wanted to do?
To be frank, all I wanted to do was to start a business. I didn’t know that would mean Bad Birdie or even working in golf! I just kept my eyes and ears open until the right opportunity presented itself.
So how do you define success for yourself or Bad Birdie?
I define success as Bad Birdie being able to help contribute to the golf culture shifting towards being more inclusive and fun for anyone who wants to play. Internally for Bad Birdie, I see success as building a team of leaders who feel valued, contribute to our bigger mission, and who genuinely enjoy their work at the company.
Do you think there’s a price for success? Have you made any sacrifices to achieve your success?
Yes – time, stress, sleepless nights, finances – all the standard things you hear from entrepreneurs. I think the biggest sacrifice is mental though. 90% of my thoughts are around Bad Birdie and growing the company. It’s not really something you can turn off.
Bad Birdie Golf

90% of my thoughts are around Bad Birdie and growing the company. It’s not really something you can turn off.

I define success as Bad Birdie being able to help contribute to the golf culture shifting towards being more inclusive and fun for anyone who wants to play.

The opportunity to continually be challenged like that is ultimately what motivates me. I’m addicted to pushing things forward to grow myself and the business.

I hear you! But success is not linear, so tell me about a time you’ve failed and what you learned from that experience.
One that comes to mind is when a couple of polo designs we created that totally flopped as a result of me trying to rush out designs instead of spending the time to produce something unique and listening to what customers wanted. I’ve built out a much better workflow for this now. Unless I love it, a new design doesn’t get made anymore.
Listening to customer feedback is a big lesson for any entrepreneur ! If you don’t give your customers what they want, they won’t buy from you. In terms of sales, what has been the biggest challenge you’ve had to overcome and what did you do to reach the next level?
Selling excess inventory during the off-season months has always forced us to be creative. After all, walking into a warehouse with a thousand polos that haven’t sold in a few months is not a great feeling. But in those moments, I’ve learned different tactics to move the inventory. We’ve done sample sales, mystery boxes, and other promos to help clear inventory out when needed.
Last question – what is one significant goal for Bad Birdie’s future?
We’d like to do some collaboration polos for one of the PGA Tour Majors. Masters is at the top of the list.
Love that – dream big !

You Don’t Have to Be A Shark

You Don’t Have to Be a Shark is filled with personal anecdotes and life lessons you might have learned in business school (or at least you think you might have). By drawing from my own life experiences, I will teach you how to how to use pure sales techniques to be more successful in every aspect of your life. My philosophy is simple: great salespeople are made, not born, and no one achieves success in life without knowing how to sell. You Don’t Have to Be a Shark will teach you all that and more. Available now! Order your copy today.