Ask Altucher






October 2015
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James youngest daughter Mollie joins him today to talk about what technology young teenagers are interested in today. 

Mollie than asks James today’s question,  “What you should do if you’re shy?”

James tells her you need to practice talking to people but more importantly you need to listen and then ask follow-up questions.


Listen today as James offers a few suggestions.

Direct download: AA20EP2020320Mollie20not20shy.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 10:51am EDT

Casey Neistat is an American film director, producer, and creator of popular YouTube videos.

While he has worked in almost every aspect of video making, he tells James that YouTube is his absolute passion.

He chose to leave mainstream media for YouTube, which is the opposite of most YouTubers' aspirations.

They talk about creative "ideas." Casey tells James that ideas matter very little – it's execution that matters.

They talk about risk, too, and Casey has a great take on it. He tells James, "The most dangerous lifestyle anyone can live is the lifestyle where you play it safe."


Casey probably disagrees with James more than anyone else James has ever interviewed.

Direct download: AA20Ep2020220Final.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 2:23pm EDT

Does the self-help industry help?

James says they're 99% useless but Claudia disagrees. They do both agree that you need to take time to focus on yourself before anything else.


It's a very important discussion, I promise it will make you think.

Direct download: AA20EP20201.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 12:36pm EDT

As an entrepreneur, you're going to make more bad decisions than good ones.

Even the smartest entrepreneurs constantly make decisions they have to undo.

There's an extremely small difference between a bad entrepreneur and a really great one.

Today, James shares with us some of the good and some of the bad decisions he's made.


As he says, don't ever stop trying.

Direct download: AA20EP20200.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 12:23pm EDT

You've been asked to give a speech, so how can you capitalize on this to be asked back?

First, nix the Power Point.

Second, always be a storyteller. Tell a story that relates to your talk. People will relate to you if you tell a great story.

Third, watch stand-up comedy.

And don't forget to entertain.

If you want to ask James a question, just go to...


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Direct download: AA20EP20199.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 11:30am EDT

How can I build a media empire?

James says, first you have to realize it takes years.

Find a writing voice, write constantly, and put that article everywhere you can. People will write back to you and eventually you'll get those all-important testimonials.

James recommends reading "The Ultimate Cheat Sheet for Reinventing Yourself," a post he wrote for his blog.

If you want to ask James a question, just go to...


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Direct download: AA20Ep20198.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 10:09am EDT

Nicole Lapin, known for being the youngest anchor ever at CNN and then going on to claim the same title at CNBC where she anchored "Worldwide Exchange" and contributed to "Morning Joe" and "The Today Show" joins James on today's special edition of Ask Altucher.

Nobody handed Nicole anything. She's worked her butt off since she was 15.

She started in Kentucky, then South Dakota and on to Palm Springs while still finishing her college degree.

She finally got a 4 a.m. time slot on CNBC and immediately fell in love with it.

In Nicole's new book Rich Bitch, she lays out a 12-step plan in which she shares her experiences – mistakes and all – of getting her own finances in order. Money is typically an "off limits" conversation, but nothing is off limits here.

Nicole rethinks every piece of financial "wisdom" you've ever heard and puts her own fresh, modern, sassy spin on it. Sure, there are some hard-and-fast rules about finance, but when it comes to your money, the only person who can tell you how to spend it is you. Should you invest in a 401(k)? Maybe not. Should you splurge on that morning latte? Likely yes.

It's a bit different format today.

I hope you enjoy it.


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Direct download: AA20Ep2019720.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 2:25pm EDT

Today we're going to do something a little bit different.

Hi, my name is David Newman and I'm the Executive Producer for all of James' podcasts.

Yesterday, while Claudia and James were having lunch, she turned on her phone and recorded their conversation.

And while James knew she was recording him, he had no idea she was going to send it to me.

After listening to it, I decided to release it to you today.

As I said, it's a bit different.

I hope you enjoy it. So here goes…


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Direct download: AA20EP2019620Final.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 2:08pm EDT

Building connections and building relationships are how you bring real value to the world around you.

Jayson Gaignard is a super-connector. He's two degrees of separation from anyone you want to meet.

Broke and $250,000 in debt, Jayson thought about an idea that nobody else was doing after getting a free ticket to hear Seth Godin speak, connecting entrepreneurs over an intimate dinner.

He paid for this himself by going even further into debt with no expectations of ever making money on these. Mastermind Dinners launched and Jayson’s new venture was off and running.

Entrepreneurship often takes an unyielding belief in yourself, and Jayson definitely believes.

Listen today to hear the story of someone who bet everything he had on an idea.

His new book, Mastermind Dinners Build Lifelong Relationships by Connecting Experts, Influencers and Linchpins is a fantastic read and he hosts a podcast, Mastermind Talks you really need to subscribe to.


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Direct download: AA20Ep20195.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 10:02am EDT

Claudia and I threw out everything we owned this weekend. We threw out 98% of everything.

There are about 30 garbage bags and another 20 boxes filled with stuff. "Stuff."

We had just spent six weeks traveling around and except for the stuff we were traveling with we realized we didn't need anything else.

No papers, books, extra sheets, clothes, extra plates, tables, lights, etc. I didn't even miss these things once.

25 years' worth of memories in some cases.

Part of this is an experiment. I'm interviewing Marie Kondo in a few weeks. Author of the 2-million-copies bestseller The Art of Tidying Up.

I wanted to try her suggestions. She said before you "organize," you "discard." But once we started discarding, we couldn't stop. We discarded everything. All of our rooms are now pretty empty.

And it's not like we are going to replace anything. If anything, having less leaves room in your life for more, for other things.

That is the trick.

Marie Kondo suggests you lay everything out side by side.

Then you touch each object.

If it gives you joy, you keep it. If it doesn't give you joy, or if you haven't used it in a long time, throw it out. No holding back.

If it's paper, you throw it. I threw out my photos, books, art, furniture, all my clothes except 3 outfits. I thanked everything for its dutiful service to me.

It feels almost like a new toy. "Nothing" was the toy I wanted to play with, instead of the latest "this" or "that."

If you want to try it, try this: take all the books from one bookshelf. Lay them on the floor side by side.

Touch each one. If it doesn't make you happy or if you haven't looked at the book in over six months, give it away. Don't say, "well I might need this as a reference later." You won't. There's Google for that.

Don't say, "it was a great book, though". Ok, it was great. Give it to someone else. Say "thank you" to it. Then throw it out.

"But we might have a guests over some day." Buy new sheets then. Four years from now, when you actually have a guest. "But Sheila gave me this shirt." Have you worn it in the past six months?

Claudia thought we would only get rid of enough things to get rid of one bookshelf. She thought our closets would still be full.

But we got rid of everything. We have nothing left. There's nothing in my office.

Nothing in my desk. Our closets... empty.

I want nothing in between us. In between you and me.

If you have a question that you would like to ask you can either:


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Direct download: AA20EP20194.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 2:26pm EDT