Season 1,

55: How to Lose Money by Working with the Wrong Client with James Nowlin

May 29, 2017

A survivor of a childhood riddled with domestic violence and alcoholism in the rural foothills of southern Virginia, James R. Nowlin is now the millennial CEO and founder of executive consulting firm, Excel Global Partners (EGP) and the Fund Managing Principal of the EGP Family of Companies. By mastering his habits, routines, and consciousness, James trained his mindset to shift from the poverty consciousness that he learned as a child to an abundance consciousness as an adult–and by doing so, became a multimillionaire. Today, James is not only a survivor, he is a thriver. Under James’ leadership, his firm has led successful engagements in 15 countries and in more than 20 states. His book, The Purposeful Millionaire, is a best-selling guidebook of 52 rules that teaches people about mastering the millionaire mindset and getting the most out of life–doing more, living more, and achieving more!

Time Stamped Show Notes:

[3:15] Born in Lynchburg, at the age of 17 James went to the University of Virginia for Latin American Studies and as a pre med student. With a scholarship, he dropped out after a year of studying medicine at the Howard University to then go to the the Duke University School of Law.

[5:30] After going into the family owned niche, he got into business with a brother and a sister who inherited the family company but they were not trained to run a company. James helped them.

[7:30] The part that made the brother and sister an ideal client was that they were coachable and open to change and master procedures and processes to taking their business to the next level.

[9:20] This client was the 40% of their portfolio. They were so impressed with the help of EGP that they wanted a master service agreement that consisted of having a closer relationship with them and even having team members working on site.

[11:00] This new business was exciting and scary but James was so involved with them that he overlooked additional business opportunities coming to his company.

[11:44] A lot of money came in to the brother and sister and they were pushing the consulting firm to their limits but not willing to pay them more, even after working on holidays and weekends.

[13:19] After looking at the hours tracked, it did not make sense the hours versus the time worked and not having additional benefits from it, while the brother and sister were reaping the benefits.

[14:00] Wanting to keep the client pleased, James worked too hard but that was taking a toll on his health.

[17:25] After money started to roll in, the brother and sister started to get cocky and they were advised to not let that get into their head, to remain humble. After that, James got an email stating that they were terminating the master agreement.

[19:22] Although it did not looked like so in the beginning, the clients were rotten and more money only brought out the worst of them.

[20:15] To settle on the violation of the agreement, James went to a litigation which went on for over 6 months, demanding for unpaid services and having their employee back.

[21:59] This litigation also affected James health to the point where he thought he could have a heart attack at any moment, until one day he said a prayer and that very same day he received and email from the judge saying they were ready to settle.

[23:57] The health problems were a wake up call of taking care of himself first in order to achieve what he wants for his company.

[24:39] The fight was more about pride and integrity and doing the right thing. The settlement probably meant nothing for the brother and sister but it meant a lot to James at that time.

[27:26] Sometimes people don’t do the right thing. After staying humble and doing the right thing, James can now reap the benefits of those decisions.

[29:19] Failing Forward Segment

  • What is the bottom line reason of this failure? – “I did not trust my gut, I gave too much to the client.”
  • What is the single most important lesson they and you learned from this? – “Never overextend yourself to a client and always diversify your income.”
  • What are the major ways you protect yourself from future failures? – I stay in prayer and take a really close look at our financials to make sure that we are diversified with our client base and no one client get more than 10%.”
  • Who do you turn to when you need help? – “I turn to my God…every single morning I do some meditations and prayers. I also turn to my business partner.”
  • What advice would you give to someone in a similar position? – “Breathe and take care of yourself.”

[33:30] James tells us a near death experience that happened in 2012. It really transformed him into the man he is today.

[42:23] You can find James’ book Purposeful Millionaire at

[41:39] James Nowlin’s final thought: “Just keep on pushing hard but take of yourself on the process and always be looking at your business and diversifying your client base as much as possible.”

To hear this episode and many more like it on your mobile device, you can subscribe to How To Lose Money via iTunes or Stitcher.


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