Welcome back to Leader Talk! In episode 33 we spoke to the inspiring Dan Goodwin, the head of content production at Off Limits Entertainment and the creator of Lions TV – a Millwall-focused fan channel.
Dan began Lions TV on his own in 2016, and it has since grown exponentially. His passion for football is what sets him apart from others. As a results-oriented person, Dan believes that creating great content that the world wants to see is the only way to truly succeed in content creation.
In this chat we spoke about how to find your passion, why you should never stop asking questions and the power of social media.
Authored by Dan Goodwin, creator of Lions TV.
Passion has led me to my career. When I chose to pursue what I am passionate about, that was when I became successful. In 2016, I began my YouTube channel, Lions TV, where I post videos about Millwall Football Club to the Millwall fan community. It took me until I was 35 years old and at rock bottom to find out what I was passionate about. While I hope other entrepreneurs and small to medium-sized businesses discover what they love earlier than I did, it is the secret to leading a fulfilled and successful life.
When I was 35, I got a divorce, moved back in with my parents and quit my job as a successful roofing contractor. It was my rock bottom, but it was also what led me to what I do today. My father may hate me saying this, but I always hated my job as a roofer. I woke up never wanting to go to work and was always looking forward to the weekend. It was only until after my friend and professional football player, Jimmy Bullard, asked me, “why don’t you leave?” did I finally decide to do just that, and quit.
Leaving my job was the best decision I ever made. If you don’t look forward to your job every day you wake up, you’re in the wrong industry. After I quit, I began working with Jimmy, helping him out, driving him places and watching what he did as a football presenter and host. From here, I gave every opportunity I could gain from these experiences a go. From writing segments for Jimmy to creating history and fan club videos, I took every opportunity that came my way.
Finding and being successful in your dream career is about taking opportunities when they come to you and pushing yourself out of your comfort zone. If someone told me when I was in my 20s that when I turned 35, I would be a YouTuber I would have laughed. From doing these odd jobs, I found that I was really good at creating great video content. I also learnt new skills in industries I would have never tried before.
I built and created my YouTube channel off my passion for not only the Millwall Football Club, but also for creating video content and building a fan community. I had no experience. Yet, by following my passion I have now built a channel with over nine million views. From my experiences and being a small to medium business owner, I’ve learnt you have to be determined. True determination is borne from passion.
Finding your passion
I love my job. It’s as simple as that. Every day I wake up, I am looking forward to working. I even wake up in the middle of the night to check my videos, content and other areas of my job not because I feel like I have to, but because I am so excited about what I do.
Dedication doesn’t cost you a penny. This is a quote that I live by. Every day of the week, I am dedicated to delivering the best content I can. In previous jobs, I used to only work Monday to Friday and felt like I only enjoyed life on the weekends. Now, my job takes up all my time and yet I look forward to it. It’s about perspective and finding something you are passionate about.
My advice to every small to medium business owner is to find something you love. You can earn money doing something you love, and often you’ll most likely earn more by doing so. Don’t begin your business chasing money. Do it because you love it. When I began Lions TV, I vowed to myself that I would never get back on a roof again. There was no plan B. While this may seem scary, I did it because I was dedicated to making my dream become a reality. I didn’t (and still don’t!) care what I had to sacrifice to ensure I achieved my goals. This is the level of dedication you can reach when you’re in an industry you’re passionate about.
To find out what you are passionate about, I wholeheartedly believe you need to take every opportunity that comes your way. Give everything a go. By trying new things and activities that are outside of your comfort zone, you will find a passion. These passions can take you by surprise or could be in areas you never thought you’d enjoy. You’ll never know if you like something until you try it.
Take this mentality into your business as well. I would have never believed I would be a YouTuber. Now, I can’t imagine my life without it. Even today, I try new things and give everything a go. Whether it’s a new style of video content or social media platform, I do everything with a positive attitude and with the idea that this could be the opportunity I’ve been waiting for.
Ask the questions
When I began driving Jimmy around to many of his meetings, interviews and hosting gigs, I would constantly ask questions. When I was given the opportunity to work alongside other fan-based football accounts, I asked questions. Asking questions is how you grow and improve. How can you get better if you don’t learn from others?
I am self-taught in everything I do. I had no formal education or training to do what I do today. I’m not special or better at things than others, I am just dedicated to learning and constantly improving.
While I feel like I learn things fairly quickly, everybody is a beginner at some point. People may look at me today and think that I always knew how to work a camera or edit a video, but the truth is I didn’t. I learnt from those around me and was open to making mistakes. Anyone can learn but it does take time. You won’t be an overnight success or expert in anything you do for the first time.
Throughout my career, I have learnt a lot without even realising it. I’ve picked up everything along the way and enjoyed the process. If you form strong relationships with those who are doing what you want to do, with no hidden agenda, people are more than happy to help teach you. It’s all about wanting to learn, being willing to learn and asking questions.
Don’t be afraid of social media
Social media shouldn’t be something small to medium businesses are afraid of. Instead, it should be viewed as a tool to achieve your dreams.
The best part of social media is that it doesn’t cost you anything. Anyone can create a social media account and begin posting. You would find it difficult to find someone today that doesn’t have at least one social media profile. This makes it a great marketing tool and an opportunity to gain awareness for your business – no matter what it is.
The secret to doing well on social media is staying consistent. That’s all there is to it. I am constantly helping my friends create their own business profiles on social media and I will ask them each day “did you post today?”. Often, they’ll tell me they didn’t.
It takes five minutes to post something on social media. There’s no excuse for not posting every day. When you maintain consistency, you get closer to reaching your goals. This is because every post you make could help you generate one extra customer every day. While there is more to social media than just consistency, like finding the right time to post and what content, consistency will help build a strong foundation for your business.
Remember, don’t be afraid of social media. It’s a powerful tool that can help expand and grow your business.
Ten years ago, I would have never believed I would be doing what I do today. I am proud of the career I have built and glad that I took every opportunity that came my way. It’s up to you as an individual to acknowledge the opportunities that come your way and run with them. This is how you can find your passion.
I am obsessed with what I do. Every day I wake up looking forward to the day ahead. Every small to medium business owner should wake up with the same zeal, otherwise it will be hard to find the motivation to succeed. Ask the questions and utilise social media. These are your secret weapons as a small to medium business owner and can ensure you continue to grow and expand.
The final piece of advice I will leave you with is to always remember, dedication doesn’t cost you a penny.