Jeff Lehman on The Frugal Millionaires, The Sales Managers’ Mentor and Being a Chief Pre-Revenue Officer
Susan Bratton

Episode 77 - Jeff Lehman on The Frugal Millionaires, The Sales Managers’ Mentor and Being a Chief Pre-Revenue Officer

Meet Jeff Lehman, Internet old timer, author, entrepreneur and sailor. Jeff was in ad sales in the early days of online advertising and has segued his success into a profitable consulting career. He's recently launched is second book, The Frugal Millionaires: 70 millionaires anonymously share their ideas bout money to help each other and you." He tells us about "the model millionaire" and why the favorite part of his book is the marriage advice.

Relationship advice is a big part of this show as Suz and Jeff discuss his favorite all time book, His Needs, Her Needs about how women want affection, conversation, honesty and financial support and men need sexual fulfillment, companionship, an attractive spouse, peace and quiet and admiration. Very insightful!

Jeff also wrote "The Sales Manager's Mentor." Find out why there are no keys to the executive washroom and the need for typecasting sales people. Then Suz and Jeff "dish" on their mutual acquaintances including George Garrick, Ann Burgraff, Clark Kokich and Scott Swanson - other famous industry executives. Go from Singapore to personal elegance to the Men's Movement in one fell swoop.

Jeff shares his most sinful guilty pleasure and the one thing that pushed his edge the hardest in his life. They have to do with adrenaline rushes of yacht racing and motorcycle riding... So hop on and hang on for a fun and insightful interview with the very successful "mentor man."



Susan Bratton: Welcome to Dishy Mix. I'm your host Susan Bratton and on today's show you're going to get to meet Jeff Lehman. Jeff is an internet old-timer. He started in the heyday of the internet. I've known him for a long time and he is an author of a new book and an older book. We're gonna talk about both of them cause I think you're gonna like them. He's an entrepreneur He's a mentor. He's a sailor and he's a really fun guy. So, on today's show we're gonna talk about the Sales Manager's mentor, frugal millionaires, his needs and her needs, why their both important, what it's like to crew a yacht race across the North Atlantic, and how one can possibly get a job title of Chief Pre-Revenue Officer. I like that.

Jeff Lehman: I think everybody, you know, strives to get to the top of a company or get at a very high level executive position because they think that they'll have a lock on making a lot of money and having a lot of respect and having all access to all kinds of perks. You know what as we're finding out today those perks just really are probably worth the effort, frankly. So sometimes you just have to figure out do you have the right person calling on the right people and there's no reason why, I mean, you put the right quarterback in you put the right player's in the field of you wanna, if you wanna throw a long pass you don't put your runners in you put your pass receivers in. So, umm, it's just picking the right people for the right jobs really. The one thing I've learned from these millionaires is they know that they don't know everything. So they were really anxious to participate in this because they knew they were gonna hear other people's ideas that they may not know.

Susan Bratton: Welcome Jeff.

Jeff Lehman: Hi, Susan, how are you?

Susan Bratton: I am great dear. How are you?

Jeff Lehman: I'm doing very well. Thank you.

Susan Bratton: Now you're calling me from Seattle today?

Jeff Lehman: Yes, I am.

Susan Bratton: Okay. Good, I'm glad to hear it. Well, so Jeff before we get into the books, both your new one, The Frugal Millionaire, and your first book which I didn't even know about til I just started doing my homework on you, which was the Sales Manager's Mentor. I wanna talk about that on the show today too. But before we get to those I really wanted go through the story of your career because so many people who listen to Dishy Mix are in media advertising marketing sales management. They're entrapreneurs. You are kind of the uhh, a poster child for many of the people who listen to the show. You've done a lot of different things. You've moved around and you've morphed your career. You know, starting out at Ziff Davis, moving to Real Networks and FyCast, you were in the Search World at AltaVista. And then you've been doing some work in some startups like Webaroo and Ripple. So tell us the story of how you got into things and how you moved through your career and made those decisions cause it's that, that change thought that is really interesting to us.

Jeff Lehman: Sure, well, you know, it's really more interesting than that because before the Ziff Davis connection I actually started my first job uhh after I resigned from law school. I'm another law school dropout. I worked for a company in southern California called PRICESIFTER and they make plumbing brass faucets.

Susan Bratton: Oh, yeah. We know them.

Jeff Lehman: So that's how I got my career in high-tech.

Susan Bratton: okay

Jeff Lehman: (chuckle)

Susan Bratton: Through plumbing.

Jeff Lehman: Through plumbing. Umm well, you know, you gotta have it. So I started as a marketing analyst and ended up managing corporate accounts, True Value and Ace Hardware and those accounts really gave me a good perspective of the marketing side and then I got an opportunity to go into sales selling media for a company called Fairchild Publications. If you remember them back in the day, MIS Week and E! News, those books, and umm got promoted up to the Bay area and people that I was calling on liked the job and the service that I was giving them but didn't really like the publication that I was working on so they helped me get a job at Ziff Davis and worked there for gosh almost 11, 12 years and it's gonna sound like I couldn't keep the job but I had a lot of different jobs at Ziff Davis when I was there cause I was always going working on the startups, the new startup magazines or, then they came to me one day with this thing called the internet and it didn't seem like a lot of the other print publishers wanted to branch out and go in that direction. They weren't sure about the internet but I was willing to take a shot at it and that's kinda what got me in the fast lane.

Susan Bratton: You're an intrapreneur at Ziff Davis and helped launch ZDNet, right?

Jeff Lehman: Yes, exactly right.

Susan Bratton: And so how did you decide to leave the publishing world and move into, you moved to Real Networks and ad-sales there right? So you moved from print advertising to internet advertising, was that the joke?

Jeff Lehman: Well there's a little step in between and while I was at Ziff Davis we had, umm, we started a thing called SOFTBANK INTERACTIVE MARKETING which was the first ref firms to sell sites. We were selling Yahoo and Netscape and, oh my gosh, MapQuest, I guess, and a bunch of other ones and that ref firm model made a lot of sense for smaller websites but as the websites we were working on got bigger and bigger and bigger they wanted their own sales forces and uhh so SOFTBANK INTERACTIVE MARKETING kind of went on it's own way and morphed into something else and I had an opportunity to come up here to Seattle and work for Real Networks and I jumped at it. I was spending, you know, 12 years in the Bay area and I thought it was time to make a move up here.

Susan Bratton: And then, you did ad sales for Real Networks and then you moved to FlyCast. How, what was it that made you make that change?

Jeff Lehman: Well, umm, you know, I guess it was... Real Networks is the first job, you're gonna hear this, it's the first time a lot of people are gonna hear this, Real Networks was the first job that I ever got fired from.

Susan Bratton: Oh, good for you. What'd you do? Were you too complacent?

Jeff Lehman: And uhh, and I was gonna stick it out and not quit. You know, I was gonna get fired before I quit. And uhh, it just turned out to not work out and you know, that company was 95% focused on software at the time and 5% focused on advertising so there just wasn't a good mix there. So, it's time to move on which is fine and uhh I went from a job at Real Networks to a job at FlyCast, back down to the Bay area again, even though I maintained my residency up here. And uhh, I sorta lived a double life. I had uhh you know a set of clothes and a car and an apartment down in the Bay area and then I had my house up here. So umm it was a fantastic experience. Going into FlyCast, they were... It was just as the internet was starting to take off. And in the span of a year the company filed to go public, went public, got bought, got sold, the whole thing. It was like living seven years in one year. So it was a pretty amazing journey.

Susan Bratton: And now you are, in addition to being an author, you are also a consultant helping early stage companies. Who came up with Chief Pre-Revenue Officer of Ripple? That's a good term.

Jeff Lehman: I'm sure...

Susan Bratton: That's like zero accountability, dude.

Jeff Lehman: Well I'm sure that the CEO of Ripple, Bill, umm, we got a big laugh out of that. Cause when the company first started it was a great idea we went out sorta pre-sold some advertising per proof of concept and then decided we're gonna re-tool the product and come up with something different so for a year I was selling something that wasn't completely there yet. And, you know, so that's where we came up with the title of Chief Pre-Revenue Officer because I was out selling but I wasn't sure what I was selling.

Susan Bratton: Well what strikes me with a lot of the technology companies you worked on there, kind of music and video discovery, that was Ripple, Webaroo's kind of mobile media technology, that you're still interested in the intersection of technology and media. How is being an author a part of that? Is it completely seperate or still you know, “Hey I've gotta work the internet to get my book sold?” Where are you finding the connective tissue there?

Jeff Lehman: Well it's actually even broader than that because in launching a book, you know, you need to really expand a wide.. cast a wide net out there.

Susan Bratton: Yes.

Jeff Lehman: So I've been doing, you know, TV interviews and, you know, I'm on your show today which is fantastic. And I've done some other radio work. And so you're just.. you're experiencing all the different media but it all kind of centers around the internet because you point everybody back to Oh you should see my clip on, you know, from this interview on TV or you should go read what this review was so the internet becomes a hub for all this and it's a great place to point back to so you can direct everybody.

Susan Bratton: Absolutely. I didn't even hear from you about your new book. I heard from a friend of ours. You've got your network working. We're gonna talk social networks later on in the show too. So before we get to The Frugal Millionares, you're brand new book, I had discovered that you wrote The Sales Manager's Mentor. And I was... I didn't know you had done this but of course, you know, I've run sales teams pretty much my whole life, been in sales and run sales teams and thats topic near and dear to my heart. There's nothing more lonely than being a sales manager. You give some tips in the book. You have kind of a top tips and mentor ideas. And in your section on managing sales people you say a couple things that I think are interesting. One is “There are no keys to the executive washroom.” What do you mean by that?

Jeff Lehman: Well, you know, essentially I think everybody, you know, strives to get to the top of a company or get at a very high level executive position because they think that they'll have a lock on making a lot of money and having a lot of respect and having all access to all kinds of perks. You know, just today we saw that all the car executives flew in on their private jets...

Susan Bratton: Right

Jeff Lehman: ... to beg the government for money.

Susan Bratton: Yeah. It's ludicrous.

Jeff Lehman: So that kind of stuff just , you know, I just think it doesn't send a message that I would wanna send out to people. And, you know, perks are one thing but I think it's the personal growth experience you have by managing a lot of people that is really what the reward is. It isn't, you know, getting your lunch cooked for you by somebody.

Susan Bratton: And what about this one typecasting salespeople?

Jeff Lehman: Well I think if you're smart you hire salespeople and you put them in certain roles and, you know, you.. one of the things I talk about in the book is, you know, there were some uhh, there was a high-tech company that transferred a lot of New York salespeople out to the Bay area and the New York selling style didn't really work in the Bay area which was a great boon for sales reps in my company because the competitive reps were really getting on the nerves of our mutual customers so our mutual customers were willing to throw budgets at us just so they could do business with us and not do business with the other guys. So sometimes you just have to figure out do you have the right person calling on the right people and there's no reason why, I mean, you put the right quarterback in you put the right player's in the field of you wanna, if you wanna throw a long pass you don't put your runners in you put your pass receivers in. So, umm, it's just picking the right people for the right jobs really.

Susan Bratton: We had a good interview with Mark Buckingham he wrote a new book called The Truth About You, and he's really a big proponent of this idea he calls the “strengths movement” which is figure out what the talents are of your team and then have them do that, not the other stuff, which is exactly what you're saying. I also, I don't know if you know this but, you know, Dishy makes this one of 35 shows on my network now and a new show that we just launched is called Sales Magic: Motivations and Meditations for Salespeople, Kicking Your Assets into Action and in a way I think being in sales is a bit of a lonely haul. You know, you're always talking to people but you're not.. even though you're all about people sometimes you're all... you feel all alone. And you get down, you get kicked, you didn't make your numbers, you know, you lost a deal that you were really counting on. You know, it's an emotional roller coaster sometimes to be in sales. And I wanted to creat a show that, if you wanted to get pumped up, you wanted to remember what you love about sales and how great you are you could listen to the show every week. It's like eight minutes long and it just pumps you up. I found this amazing guy named John James Santangelo and I love his voice. Like, you just listen to his voice and you're like “I'm pumped!” and so I'm really hoping that that show does well. I think it's the right angle for busy salespeople who just need like a little, you know, a little boof!

Jeff Lehman: Well that's fantastic right now especially with umm.. you know, a lot of people are gonna be hearing “No” right now...

Susan Bratton: Yes.

Jeff Lehman: ... because of the economy...

Susan Bratton: Yes.

Jeff Lehman: ... and, you know, “No” isn't a personal insult to you...

Susan Bratton: That's right.

Jeff Lehman: ... all those people who take it that way. It's just, you know, the state of the economy and that's okay. So I think once you sort of learn that you'll kind of let things roll of your back you're realize that, you know, as long as you're doing everything you possibly can to help a customer create more of their customers you're not gonna get every piece of business every single time and that's okay.

Susan Bratton: Yeah. Absolutely, you've gotta keep telling yourself that too. Pick yourself up and start again. So, uh, The Frugal Millionaires, I'm gonna start with this and ask a couple question and we'll have to go to a break. The Frugal Millionaires, several millionaires anonymously share their ideas about money to help each other and you. This is your new book. So first of all what motivated you to write a book about being a frugal millionaire? You must have identify with this. Is that what you are?

Jeff Lehman: I'll have to leave that to your imagination.

Susan Bratton: Hahahaha.

Jeff Lehman: Well I'd like to... you're gonna love this one Susan. So it all started with a woman.

Susan Bratton: Of course, doesn't everything good.

Jeff Lehman: I am not gonna argue with you on that.

Susan Bratton: Hahaha. Good idea.

Jeff Lehman: I was dating somebody who was a retired software billionaire who was really good with her money. And so I said, you know, give me your list. Give me somethings that are really smart that you do with your money and for what it's worth i'll give you my list. And there were some amzing things on her list that I never thought of. So I had two other friends that I asked for their list and those came back with more thing that I never even thought of and I thought I was pretty smart with my money. So I thought, well, three people all had different ideas then what's the theoretical limit until I start hearing these same ideas over and over again. So I just started networking like crazy, created a questionairre, sent it out, gotten a lot of people to respond, and just realized, I cut off right aroudn 70. My goal originally was to cut off at about 100 but at about 70 I started hearing the same things over and over again. Thought wow this is really amazing. The one thing I learend about these millionaires is they know that they don't know everything so they were really willing to participate in this because they knew that they were gonna hear other people's ideas that they may not know.

Susan Bratton: Great. We'll go to a break. I'm your host Susan Bratton and you're getting to know Jeff Lehman. Jeff is the new author of The Frugal Millionaire. Stay tuned. We'll be right back and you can figure out how you can be one.


Susan Bratton: Alright we're back. Jeff, so tell me about this model frugal millionaire. Obviously you think it's a good idea to be a frugal millionaire so tell us.

Jeff Lehman: After I sent the questionairre I would get 24 different categories for people to give tips on their money. So I got over 800 different tips across the 24 different categories. And so as i'm reading across all these tips and editing them down I'm realizing “What are some trends here there are some interesting things that you know, if somebody was gonna do just a handful of things in their life to really make a difference in their financial lives what would they be?” and came up with a 15 sort of best practices.

Susan Bratton: so give us a couple. What are 2 things tht we should do, like kind of the biggest ones to be an MFM.

Jeff Lehman: Well it all comes down to living below your means and saving more than you spend kinda thing. So the two biggest expenses you have are your house and your cars, or car. The frugal millionaire looks really differently at the way they acquire vehicles. They'll go to the auto shows and see the brand new cars and they'll make a mental note “Ah, nice car.” And then three years later when that car comes off of somebody else's lease they're gonna buy that car at about half price probably with some warranty left on it and drive it for many years and really enjoy it. But they're not gonna get stuck with the depreciation.. the big depreciation of that vehicle. They're gonna let somebody take care of that. So think of all the things you could do with the money you save if most of us are just gonna spend 40 or 50 thousand dollars on a car. If you're only spending 25 on it and investing the other 25 just think of what that does down the road.

Susan Bratton: So the thing that you told me that was your favorite part of putting this book together was marriage advice. Give us a couple of those.

Jeff Lehman: Well some people would say, uh, don't. Haha.

Susan Bratton: Don't get married?

Jeff Lehman: Well..

Susan Bratton: It's not cost-efficient. It's not frugal.

Jeff Lehman: ... some people report tat the biggest loss in net worth they have is when they get divorced. But let's think on the positive side.

Susan Bratton: There you go.

Jeff Lehman: Probably the single biggest piece of advice, and 60% of the frugal millionaires agreed with this, was that you should have a pre-nup. And it's not.. it's not the way you think of it if people think of it “Oh that's horrible” but you know look here's a potential partnership which I consider marriage of higher esteem than a business deal, right? And there's a 50% chance it's gonna fail so would you invest in something you knew had a 50% chance of failing without having any kind of protection? And so I think it's a sign of caring for the other person that if this thing goes south that everybody knows what's gonna happen and there's not gonna be a lot of drama around it anymore than the usual drama that's around a divorce which is horrible but just playing it on the smart side let's just set things up so that we know what's gonna happen.

Susan Bratton: Alright. Well I'm not sure everyone would agree with you but it's an interesting thing that both the favorite part of writing The Frugal Millionare was the marriage advice you got out of it and when I ask you what your all-time favorite book was to recommend to friends you said it was a book called His Needs, Her Needs by Willard Harley Jr. That's a hell of a name but what I loved is I just checked out the table of contents on this book and I've gotta share some of this with listeners. Apparently according to Willard Harley Jr. the first thing she can't do without is affection and the frst thing he can't do without is sexual fulfillment. She needs him to talk to her, conversation. He needs her to be his playmate, recreational companionship. She needs to trust him totally, honesty and openness. He needs a good looking wife, attractive spouse. She needs enough money to live comfortably, financial support. He needs peace and quiet, domestic support. She needs him to be a good father, family commitment. He needs her to be proud of him, admiration. I love this list. I mean it is so simple and it sounds sexist cause this is a fairly old book, you know, probably form the 70's or 80's maybe. But I think he's right. What do you think? Is this why you love this book? Is this true?

Jeff Lehman: I think he's absolutely right. You know, I wish I had read this book years ago. I wish I would have read the “She Needs..” part first. I already know what the “He Needs..” part is.

Susan Bratton: Yeah, right. Cause you knew what you needed. Yeah, and you felt like he was putting on target for you.

Jeff Lehman: And for the girlfriend whose idea it was for me to read this book it was right on target for her too. So it was a great basis for us to have a conversation about a lot of stuff and if there was anything we were not certain about between each other we could go to that book, we could re-read it, we could talk about it and it really opened up the lines of communication and made you realize, wow, this other person has this perspective. And it isn't even the way I think about stuff but I need to acknowledge it, I need to work with it and it's really great if i'm listening, paying attention, and meeting her needs. Why wouldn't I? That's the reason you wanna be in a relationship to begin with.

Susan Bratton: Absolutely. It's funny too because this is something that we share with our friends all the time. So Tim and I have done this work around relationship values. What are my top relationship values? What are his top relationship values? And we got that by going to something called Date with Destiny at a Tony Robbins conference that was really good and he, I think, got it from Barbara De Angelis who wrote a book called Are You the One for Me? And essentially it has you get really honest with yourself about wht are the top things you want for yourself in a relationship. And it's surprising how closely these things mirror Tim's relationship top needs and my top relationship needs. They're not perfect and they're in different priorities but in general they follow suit about what what I would want, what he would want. And Tim always says, I just get up everyday and I just make sure I'm focused on giving Susan the top four things that she wants in our marriage. And I get up everyday and I'm really lucky because 2 or 3 of the 4 things Tim wants everyday in his relationship just come naturally to me. I don't even have to think about them. That's why i'm kinda perfect for him. I don't have to do any energy. But focusing on what you're partner really wants on a day to day basis makes a huge difference. That's our job. That's our marriage job. And it's not hard.

Jeff Lehman: Right. How simple is that?

Susan Bratton: It's simple.

Jeff Lehman: It's really simple once you get it.

Susan Bratton: Once you're clear about what you really want and you're honest enough to ask for it. That's the thing that holds people back. They're afraid to say what they really want cause sometimes it's not in line with what they think they should want.

Jeff Lehman: That's right and I think also when you're just starting a relationship and you see lot of red flags pop up, if you don't address those red flags, trust me, they're gonna come back and bite you so bad. 6 months, 12 months down the road you're gonna be looking at yourself going, “Now, there were all these things that I thought were red flags. Why would I compromise on these things when I really didn't need to?” So now you just get smarter and it happens as you get older.

Susan Bratton: It does.

Jeff Lehman: You get smarter about, “Here's what I want. Here's what i'm into.” It's not like you're making demands.

Susan Bratton: No.

Jeff Lehman: You're just saying, “Hey here's who I am as a person and if you want to accept me as a person and I accept you for all your stuff then we're good to go.” But otherwise I would say it's usually better to head the other direction.

Susan Bratton: I would agree. But live and learn all this stuff, I know. So I wanna gossip about some mutual friends. Shall we do that?

Jeff Lehman: Sure.

Susan Bratton: Okay. So you and I have a lot of friends in common because we've both been in the internet advertising, we both came out of print media, and then at tech print media. Like, we kind of had the same career track. We were both selling print advertising in the tech space and then we both got into internet advertising. So we've always been.. we've stayed connected all these years cause we've kind of been kindred spirits and we've collected a lot of mutual acquaintances, a couple. So let's see. I just saw George Garrick recently. Tell me what you know about him.

Jeff Lehman: Well George just went to work for a new company and of course..

Susan Bratton: What did he choose cuase I didn't hear the latest?

Jeff Lehman: I wish I could remember the name of it.

Susan Bratton: He was thinking about gaming. I know. He was thinking about something in gaming.

Jeff Lehman: I just.. I just saw.. Yes, gaming site.. Yeah, I just saw up on his Facebook page that he has moved over there and is just getting settled. So, you know, George is great. He was my CEO at FlyCast and, you know, that was probably the best experience I ever had. I went from having a really bad experience on the job just before that..

Susan Bratton: Mhmm.

Jeff Lehman: .. to having a fantastic experience working under him. George will give you enough rope to hang yourself, he knew you were a professional at what you did, he'd say work with your teammates and your fellow sea level executives and just get it done and I loved that about him.

Susan Bratton: Yeah he's very matter-of-act, isn't he? I appreciate that about him too.

Jeff Lehman: Yes.

Susan Bratton: There's kinda no muss, no fuss with George.

Jeff Lehman: That's right.

Susan Bratton: Yeah you just get it straight on exactly how you need to have it. I like that about him. He was recently the CEO of Jingle Networks which is that 1-800-FREE411 service. And I'm an investor and on the advisory board with that. So that was how I had connected with George.

Jeff Lehman: Yep

Susan Bratton: Now Ann Burgraff, last I knew, now she started out in the NetGravity world, last I knew she was living in Singapore or something like that.

Jeff Lehman: She is still in singapore...

Susan Bratton: yeah.

Jeff Lehman: .. and I just got an e-mail from her this morning. A friend of hers just move to Seattle and she wanted me to make sure that this friend kind of got to know the lay of the land.

Susan Bratton: Mhmm.

Jeff Lehman: So we're gonna connect when her friends get back from Salt Lake City after Thanksgiving.

Susan Bratton: And so what's she doing in Singapore? Is she married and living there with her husband or what?

Jeff Lehman: Oh, yeah. Yeah. So she and Chris have been married for a long, long time.

Susan Bratton: Okay.

Jeff Lehman: And I think he had the opportunity over there working for a big softwre company and she tagged along and has made a great career for herself as well. And I think actually this weekend she was heading to Autstrailia or something.

Susan Bratton: Yeah, she's taking advantage of being there.

Jeff Lehman: So she's always.. she's always moving around.

Susan Bratton: She's lovely, just lovely. And what about Clark Kokich? Now he was running Avenue A which is now called Razorfish. And that's the last time I talked to him. Is he still running all the BM off?

Jeff Lehman: You know, I'm pretty sure his Gazzette's part of Microsoft now.

Susan Bratton: Yeah.

Jeff Lehman: I just saw him at dinner a couple weeks ago at a mutual restaurant, everyone likes to hang out, up on the queen ant hill where I live and just ran into him very briefly. He seems very happy doing great. Yeah, he's made quite a career for himself. I remember his first day at Avenue A. One of the original founding partners just hired him said “Go spend some time with Jeff because he understand the internet business.” I think at that point I think there was probably four of us that might have.

Susan Bratton: yeah

Jeff Lehman: At least we were faking it. And I just spent a lot of time with clark and I just watched his career grow for, you know, for gosh, 10 years. And he just had an amazing career. And he's just such a nice guy.

Susan Bratton: He is. I find him.. two things come to my mind when I think about clark. He's elegant. There's something very elegant about his demeanor but not in the way that makes you feel diminshed, just uh.. he's expansive. There's something about.. his demeanor is just so lovely to interact with. Don't you think?

Jeff Lehman: Yeah, intersting. Yeah

Susan Bratton: I think that's probably why he's good at A: managing large teams of fairly young people and B: managing clients in an agency relationship.

Jeff Lehman: Right, one of the hardest jobs on the planet.

Susan Bratton: It is! And he kinda seems to fluidly manage it all. Yeah, he's lovely. And now uh, fourth person and we'll stop the gossiping but it's always fun to just kinda catch up cause so many people know these people. It's, you know, it's not just us. What about Scott Swanson? Last I knew he was running Glam.

Jeff Lehman: Okay so Scott is.. I got a phone call from Scott, okay, this is pretty funny cause even I was laughing when he said it, but he said “Jeff I'm leaving Glam and I'm gonna move to Seattle..”

Susan Bratton: Really?

Jeff Lehman: ..”and I'm gonna live a life just like Jeff Lehman.” And I said..

Susan Bratton: Nice.

Jeff Lehman: .. “No you don't.”

Susan Bratton: oh. It looks good from out here Jeff.

Jeff Lehman: I said I wanna write a book. I wanna do consulting work and all that. I said “Well come on up, you know, when you get here, when you land let me know. We'll go have lunch.” So we actually took my sailboat out, did a little sailing, caught up. He's just coming back from Spain. He was on a project in Spain. I don't remember what city in Spain he was in but I just saw an email from him yesterday saying that he was on his way back. He's got one more day to go and then he's coming back. So we're gonna get really caught up when he gets back stateside here.

Susan Bratton: That's fantastic. You know, he's part of the .. he was part of the kind San Francisco kind of Men's Circle, the sort of Men's Movement. And I have another show on personal life media that's called The New Man which is all about men's development, finding your purpose, living your life the way you wanna live it, and so you can just see that in his actions. Calling and saying “Hey, I wann alive the life that you have. Show me how to do it.” That's a.. that's exactly the kind of thing that you'd get in a, you know, empowerment circle of guys that get together and kind of hold each other accountable to what they really want in their lives rather than just staying stuck in their rut. I love the whole Men's Movement. There's not enough awareness of it.

Jeff Lehman: That's right. And everybody thinks they're just getting together and having a few beers right?

Susan Bratton: Well getting.. hanging around by a fire, you know, outside doing pushups and macho stuff, right. So you talked about your boat. Tell us about the boat that you have and then tell us the story of this yacht that you crewed in the North Atlantic.

Jeff Lehman: Well the boat that I have is something that I actually.. it's interesting how I got a hold of this boat. Back when I worked for CMGI somebody made in error in selling too much stock when I left the company and all of a sudden they were ready to give me shares back at 12.50 a share and I said “What was the share price when you guys made this error?” And they said “Oh it was 10 times higher.” And I said “Okay I'll take a check. I don't need stock. I'll just take a check.” And that afforded me a nice sailboat and I've had it for almost, gosh, almost 8-9 years now and go up to Canada and sail around the Puget Sound here, do a little races on Tuesday nights called Duck Dodges on Lake Union and that's a lot of fun.

Susan Bratton: What's a Duck Dodge? Why is it called that?

Jeff Lehman: Well there's ducks on the lake and the number one rule is don't hit a duck. So..

Susan Bratton: Hahahaha. Don't they move out of the way anyway?

Jeff Lehman: Sometimes they do but you know they kind of own the lake so you know you got to give them a little wide berth there and let them just... and just move around them but it's an absolute fun race. It's not serious at all. I usually take a dozen friends out with me and we just have a great time and hurl insults back at the other sailors and they kind of hurl insults back at us and that's kind of the way the day goes followed by a couple of drinks and some food afterwards. So that's a lot of fun. But the other boat that I sailed on is twice the size of the one that I had.

Susan Bratton: how big is the one that you have? What kind of boat do you have?

Jeff Lehman: It's a 37-foot Jeanneau which is a French boat.

Susan Bratton: It sounds pretty.

Jeff Lehman: Jeanneau and Beneteau are the two uh, they're sister companies and they're part of the largest manufactureres in the country on boats. And they're still doing well despite the recession which is kind of amazing. But it's nothing fancy. But it's a great boat for me to sail and sometimes I got out single handed. So that's the experience that I've had, you know, out here in the Seattle area. Well I did this trans-Atlantic yacht race where we were on a racing yacht. It was twice the size. It was 72-feet long, very heavy big racing boat and we raced from South Hampton, England to Boston. When the race was originally scheduled it was planned in 2000. The race in 2002 was gonna finish September 11th 2002 which we found a year later would have been a year after 9/11. They decided to a way point in, an imaginary point down near New York that we had to sail down around and come back up so that we wouldn't finish on the 11th. Instead, we finished on Friday the 13th.

Susan Bratton: Haha. It's a superstitious crew, I'd say.

Jeff Lehman: You got to wonder about the timing on that. Well it turns out it was sort of a superstitious thing because as we were heading down the coast, Hurricane Gustav was coming up the coast.

Susan Bratton: Oh my God.

Jeff Lehman: And that wasn't on anybody's radar, literally, until a couple of days before we started heading down that point. We were one of three boats that made it around the imaginary point. The other three had to turn back and we sort of hit for about three hours with a hurricane.

Susan Bratton: What was that like? What did you do?

Jeff Lehman: I actually.. It was pretty darn amazing. I was never fearful on this race. You're always clipped in. It's a big boat. Everybody is very safety oriented but you're sitting in the cockpit of the boat and my job all the way across the North Atlantic was to be the main sheet trimmer which means you're pulling the main sail. So I'm sitting there and there's a ton of wind blowing against the boat. The wind is flying by so fast that the rain is coming down horizontally. And you're just in awe. You're watching all this go on around then you go below and it's so quiet inside the boat.

Susan Bratton: Really?

Jeff Lehman: You don't even know there's a storm raging around outside of you.

Susan Bratton: The boat's not tossing around like crazy?

Jeff Lehman: Oh, it is. You have to get used to sleeping, eating, living at 30-degrees and bouncing around. So it's not uncommon for the boat to drop, you know, 15-feet..

Susan Bratton: Right.

Jeff Lehman: ..when it goes over the crest of a wave but you just sort of get used to it.

Susan Bratton: I think you're a little bit of an adrenaline junkie because you've done these interesting crews, you've told me your sinful pleasure was riding your motorcycle 125 mph down the Pacific Coast Highway. You also said you were naked. Is it true?

Jeff Lehman: No I just said that for you, Susan.

Susan Bratton: Hahaha. Just so I could have that image. Cause if bugs hit you it hurts at 125 mph. I think you'd wanna wear clothes.

Jeff Lehman: Okay, how would you know that?

Susan Bratton: I've had bugs in my teeth.

Jeff Lehman: Oh, I see.

Susan Bratton: And the fastest I've ever driven anything was about 110. I had a Z28 race car when I was younger, in my 20's, and I went about 110 on some flat stretches of road in Arizona where I lived and it was truly exhilarating but felt like once I hit 110.. if I.. the difference bethween 11o and 111, I just couldn't do it. I didn't have the juevos to get there. So..

Jeff Lehman: It's an interesting feeling. Every year field of vision definitely gets narrow and you realize every sudden change in everything so I think it's somewhat mind-altering.

Susan Bratton: Yeah, mind-altering. That's one thing. That's great. Well I have had a good time catching up with you, Jeff. It's been really fun to hear about both your newest book, The Frugal Millionaire, as well as your first book which I completely missed and enjoyed, The Sales Manager's Mentor. Thanks for sharing your life, your wisdom, your books, and you know it's interesting I think what you like to do is collect wistom ad share it with everyone. It strikes me that that's what you've been doing with your book series now, isn't it?

Jeff Lehman: I think that's right. That's why we call it Mentors. The name of the company is Mentors Prep.

Susan Bratton: Oh right. Of course, that makes total sense. Well thank you for being a mentor to us today. We've really enjoyed having you on the show.

Jeff Lehman: My pleasure.

Susan Bratton: All right. Well, we got to meet Jeff Lehman the author, entrepreneur, mentor, sailor, and internet old-timer. I hope you'll check out one or both of his books and I have a couple copies of The Frugal Millionaire to give away. And I have a new URL. You don't even have to go find me on Facebook. Just go to It'll take you right there. Post you're desire for a copy of Jeff's book and I'll see if I can send it out to you. Have a great day. I'm your host Susan Bratton. Thanks for tuning in to Dishy Mix. Find more great shows like this on