This week on Inside Quest I picked the brain of a man whose brilliance resides at the intersection of psychology, technology and business. He’s made great strides toward understanding why we’re so addicted to the little pieces of glass, plastic and metal we call smartphones – and more directly, the apps we cannot put down. Nir Eyal is the author of the bestselling “Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products” as well as a regular contributor to Forbes, Tech Crunch and his own fascinating blog Nir and Far.
He sold his first company before graduating from Stanford Business School and has gone on to sell yet another company before switching gears to study the psychology of addictive technology and how understanding the patterns of addictive behavior is key to crafting positive change in the world.
Nir Eyal is one of those rare people who’s doing incredibly original, incredibly important work at the intersection of passion and skill. You can tell within seconds that he cares deeply about his work. He’s been dubbed a techno prophet by MIT Technology Review and I thoroughly enjoyed speaking with, challenging and absorbing Nir’s philosophies.
This week on Inside Quest I had the honor to sit down with one of LA Business Journal’s “Most admired CEOs”, Jason Nazar. His path to success is as storied as his accomplishments – a former stage hypnotist and avid Superhero lover, Jason accesses his passions and molds them into successful strategies to motivate and inspire his workers. As the founder and former CEO of docstoc—one of the most visited websites on the planet with over 50 million registered user—Jason doesn’t shy away of his own humble beginnings and takes pride in the fact that we all have the power to shape our unmolded futures.
I often try to consume as much information as possible about a guest before they come in, but to ingest the amount of published content that Jason has created could qualify as an MBA course unto itself. As a regular contributor to Forbes, The Wall Street Journal and Business Insider, you can find Jason’s work all over the internet and it’s just as informative, insightful and interesting as the time we spent together.
It was Jason’s interest in Superheroes I found most fascinating – this is a guy who was already founding his first company before graduating from college, yet found the time to attain an encyclopedic knowledge of the world’s most memorable heroes and apply it to the success of his business and employees.
As a man unafraid to shape his own destiny, Jason Nazar teaches us that there are no half-measures and that if you have a dream the only limitation is your imagination. Tune in on Wednesday to see just how far Jason’s imagination has taken him.
Shabnam Mogharabi is building an “Empire of Joy,” and I for one have already put in my application for citizenship. I first met Shabnam when I was visiting the SoulPancake offices (they’re stunning by the way. Everything about the place conspires to put a smile on your face). I immediately felt comfortable around Shabnam. Her openness, her warmth, her ready smile, her infectious giggle… they all put you at ease. Perhaps most fascinating: This ebullience of hers isn’t innate personality, it’s an acquired skill. By her own admission she used to be “an Eeyore.” She had to work hard to become a Tigger. Shabnam makes you want to be real. She makes you want to play. She makes you want to be the best version of yourself just so you can keep pace with her.
I was surprised by how comfortable I felt in her presence. So comfortable, in fact, that I got pretty damn emotional when I was telling her about my mom and my sister and how I co-founded Quest to help them out, to help end the global slide toward obesity and ill health.
Don’t misunderstand me… Shabnam isn’t all cuddly puppies and unicorns. She’s an efficiency MACHINE. This woman gets shit DONE. But she does it with grace and elan. She inspires you to be better, she makes you feel like your ideas matter, like you’re worth something. But she measures success ruthlessly, and she can prove, with hard data, that what the things she’s doing with SoulPancake are making a tangible difference.
She’s built a company around inspiring the whole species to grow beyond its limitations. That’s an ambitious goal if I’ve ever heard one, and obviously SoulPancake is well on its way.
With hundreds of millions of YouTube views, and features from world leaders and celebrities alike (everyone from Beyonce to President Obama to Mindy Kaling), the channel is doing more than making videos go viral… it’s making JOY go viral too.
This episode is so much fun you might not even realize how much you’ve learned by the end. But don’t worry… we’ll remind you.
This week’s Inside Quest guest uses the 24 hours in his day more efficiently than anyone I know. And none of that is busy work. Dr. Peter Diamandis thinks on such a grand scale that I want to punch myself in the face for being small minded. The title of his NY Times Bestselling book isn’t just a nice idea, it’s the philosophy by which he lives his life: BOLD: How to go big, create wealth, and impact the world
Go Bold or Go Home.
Maybe it’s that Dr. Diamandis has a healthy disregard for the impossible, maybe it’s his dual degrees from MIT (in molecular genetics and aerospace engineering), maybe it’s that he’s never stopped being a nine-year-old kid dreaming of outer space.
All of these things have conspired to make this man the undisputed heavyweight champion of moonshot thinking. And more often than not, when Dr. Diamandis aims for the moon, he hits that target… and manages to gather all sorts of stardust along the way. It’s no accident that four of Peter’s most successful companies are the ones with the most ambitious missions:
Those are just four of his SEVENTEEN companies. Don’t be intimidated. Be inspired.
Dr. Diamandis is an unrelenting optimist, a brilliant mind with incredibly actionable insights to take the reigns of your life and leave a lasting mark on the world, and one of the people who challenges me to be bolder every day.
Get ready to be transformed.
The Jeff Hoffman Inside Quest episode is up! WATCH to discover how the co-founders of Priceline connects the dots across different disciplines to create billion dollar ideas.
This extra-special Inside Quest episode with the Quest Founders has arrived! Host Tom Bilyeu interviews his business partners Mike Osborn and Ron Penna. WATCH and learn the lessons that helped these guys escape the matrix and launch their passion to unprecedented success.
William Ury is a negotiations adviser and conflict mediator whose experience has taken him from Kentucky coal mine strikes to ethnic wars in the Middle East, the Balkans, and the former Soviet Union. He authored Getting to Yes, the world’s bestselling book on negotiations that has been translated into 34 languages. He served as a consultant to the Crisis Management Center at the White House in the 80’s to help the U.S. and Soviet governments create nuclear crisis centers designed to avert an accidental nuclear war.