1894 – Actualize your Potential with David Carter

In this episode of the Thoughtful Entrepreneur, your host Josh Elledge speaks with the Chairman and Founder of Entelechy Academy, David Carter.

Carter Wide

David Carter, the Chairman and Founder of Entelechy Academy, discussed the creation and evolution of his educational institution. He spoke about the challenges and victories of establishing a school to transform learning and professional development. David's enthusiasm for education was evident as he discussed the initial phases of establishing what would later become a pioneering force in the industry. David also stressed the value of acknowledging every success, big or small, as each is a step toward more significant accomplishments.

David openly discussed his obstacles and shared insights on overcoming them, highlighting the significance of resilience and adaptability. He also focused on the role of technology in contemporary education and pointed out how Entelechy Academy utilizes advanced tools to improve the educational experience. He mentioned specific platforms and software that have made a significant impact, along with examples of their implementation at the academy.

Key Points from the Episode:

  • Entelechy Academy
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Business strategies
  • Leadership
  • Innovation
  • Success stories
  • Personal development
  • Industry insights

About David Carter:

David Carter, renowned as ‘the World's Leading CEO Mentor', is a distinguished serial entrepreneur with over 40 years of experience pioneering innovative businesses and guiding leaders and influencers worldwide. His crowning achievement, Entelechy Academy, embodies the culmination of his career and his most significant legacy project. By uniting exceptional educators, coaches, and professional organizations, David has created a platform aimed at aiding millions in realizing their utmost potential and becoming the best versions of themselves. His career is marked by a consistent theme of conceiving novel business ideas and tirelessly working to turn them into reality, often overcoming skepticism and doubts from others about the feasibility of his visions.

From his early years in investment banking and private equity across diverse global markets to his ventures in the UK leisure sector and leadership at Merryck & Co.,David has demonstrated an unyielding commitment to personal and professional growth. Notably, his work has significantly contributed to the understanding and application of character qualities essential for success, offering a unique framework that links these qualities to necessary skills. Through his ventures, writings, and the foundation of Entelechy Academy, David showcases his profound belief in the untapped potential within individuals and his dedication to unlocking it for the greater good of society. His journey reflects resilience, creativity, and a deep-seated belief in the power of mentoring to effect substantial change, both personally and in the broader world.

About Entelechy Academy:

Entelechy Academy distinguishes itself as the sole provider of ongoing personal and professional development with a focus on Character Development, incorporating both human qualities and skills. This unique educational platform serves as a bridge linking personal growth with professional advancement and overall human satisfaction. It aims to unveil the latent potential within individuals and teams, especially in the context of remote and hybrid working environments where understanding your workforce has become more challenging than ever. By addressing the unseen aspects of workforce dynamics, Entelechy Academy offers solutions to enhance engagement and align growth strategies even in uncertain times.

The foundation of Entelechy Academy is its groundbreaking methodology, which prioritizes Character Development as a means to reveal and harness the untapped potential within organizations. This approach not only facilitates risk management and fosters growth but also maps out critical steps for transformation by keeping in tune with the workforce's evolving needs. Through its emphasis on IMPACT, ACUMEN, NURTURE, PERSONAL, and INTERPERSONAL values, Entelechy Academy commits to nurturing insightful, cohesive, and evolving individuals and teams. This comprehensive strategy ensures that members of an organization can achieve their best selves while working harmoniously towards common goals, thereby catalyzing meaningful change and development

Tweetable Moments:

01:25 – “The intellect of an acorn is an oak tree, the intellect of a caterpillar is a butterfly, and so the intellect of Josh is the ultimate version of Josh with all of his potential fully actualized.”

06:34 – “Unless you teach young people to be accountable, responsible, disciplined, organized, efficient, and reliable, they're never going to be any good at time management.”

Links Mentioned in this Episode:

Want to learn more? Check out Entelechy Academy’s website at

Check out Entelechy Academy on LinkedIn at

Check out Entelechy Academy on Facebook at

Check out Entelechy Academy on Twitter at

Check out David Carter on LinkedIn at

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Josh (00:00:04) - Hey there, thoughtful listener. Would you like consistent and predictable sales activity with no spam and no ads? I'll teach you step by step how to do this, particularly if you're an agency owner, consultant, coach, or B2B service provider. What I teach has worked for me for more than 15 years and has helped me create more than $10 million in revenue. Just head to up my influence. Com and watch my free class on how to create endless high ticket sales appointments. You can even chat with me live and I'll see and reply to your messages. Also, don't forget the thoughtful entrepreneur is always looking for guests. Go to up my influence. Com and click on podcast. We'd love to have you. With us right now. David Carter, David, you are the chairman and founder of Entelechy Academy. Are you found on the web at Entelechy Academy? The spelling for that to our friend that's listening e and Entelechy Academy David, thank you so much for joining us.

David (00:01:20) - Thank you very much for inviting me.

Josh (00:01:22) - Yes, absolutely. Well, tell me more about IntelliJ key.

David (00:01:25) - And why don't we start off with talking about the etymology of the word. So Aristotle, 2500 years ago, coined the phrase intellect. And the intellect of an acorn is an oak tree. The intellect of a caterpillar is a butterfly. And so the intellect of Josh is the ultimate version of Josh with all of his potential fully actualized. And Aristotle also coined another phrase, which is the character determines destiny. And what he meant by that was we all end up in life wherever we end up, as a direct function of our character, and it's developing our character, which helps us obtain our intellect the best version of ourselves, with all of our potential fully actualized.

Josh (00:02:19) - Yeah. And it looks as though you bring this up like this is kind of the foundation of what you bring to the workplace then. Or do you work with individuals or are you working with within companies then? It's a.

David (00:02:30) - B2B business.

David (00:02:31) - Sure. So minimum 100 people in an organization up to tens of thousands. So let me explain a little bit of the background on that. So there won't be an employer anywhere in the world who over the last ten years or longer, hasn't suffered from what people like The Economist or Pearson or the World Economic Forum or McKinsey have shorthanded as the soft skills crisis. And basically what they're saying is young people leave college, university and apprenticeship scheme school and enter the workforce, but they don't have the work ready skills, the human skills, the soft skills that employers say they need them to have. And about four years ago, three and a half years ago, about this time of the year when the World Economic Forum, McKinsey, The economist, PwC, Deloitte, all of them, Pearson brought out their annual survey on the soft skills crisis. I thought there's so much rubbish written in these reports and there is a solution, but it's not the one that you're putting forwards. So we interviewed over 300 heads of HR in multiple industries and verticals from companies with 500 to 50,000 employees, and we asked them three simple questions.

David (00:04:02) - Have you heard of the soft skills crisis? Dir. Yes. Does it affect your company? Dir. Yes. What are you doing to solve the problem? And oh, we send people on courses and things like that. And I said, is it working or are you solving the problem? No we're not. So we then asked them, could you tell us exactly what soft skills your applicants or your young workforce don't have that you need them to have? And the original long list had over 800 soft skills. Now, to be fair, there was a lot of duplication where 4 or 5 people had expressed the same thing slightly differently, so there was duplication in it, but there were over 300 skills that people said were soft skills that were really technical skills, like Excel spreadsheet modeling, PowerPoint presentation making. and my favorite was the head of people for one of the UK's biggest retailers saying that Python programming was a missing. It's like you just don't understand this at all. yes. Young people maybe need coding skills or presentation skills, but they're not soft skills.

David (00:05:19) - They're technical skills. and a large major global consultancy firm, I won't name them who at the time, the world's third biggest in terms of total revenues. They were ninth in the world in terms of productivity, measured by revenues per hour or revenues per employee or profits per employee. Which was somewhat ironic, given that they're going in consulting to firms about how to boost their productivity, that they themselves weren't as productive with their workforce. And the board came to the conclusion, because they build in six minute increments of time, that the real problem was time management, you know, which is a soft skill. And they said everyone in the entire firm over a three year period on a $2,880 time management course, and they came to the conclusion three years later that despite that gigantic investment, their time management skills hadn't improved at all. And so I was brought in to try and help them understand why. And they said, listen, 95% of the people who finished the quiz at the end of the course scored 95% or more.

David (00:06:34) - So we don't understand it even more. So I said, well, show me the. Show me the quiz. And very quickly I said to what you're assessing what was taught, not what's been learned and applied. But the second thing is I said, you know, there's behaviors or what we call them as character qualities that underpin time management. Like, are you teaching your people to be accountable, responsible, disciplined, organized, efficient and reliable? no. But unless you teach young people to be those six character bodies, they're never going to be any good at time management. And what we realized was there was a missing domain underneath these soft skills of behaviors, character qualities that was not being taught. So we then show them something like these 54 character qualities and say to them, if you could choose half a dozen of these character qualities that everyone in your entire organization was brilliant, at, which six would you choose?

Josh (00:07:45) - to our audio listeners, David, just illustrate what you're sharing with me here.

Josh (00:07:49) - I'm looking at a, what looks like a ten by 10 or 10 by six matrix here of basically characteristics. There are.

David (00:07:57) - 54 characters.

Josh (00:07:58) - 54 yeah. So collaborative, accountable, organized, decisive, sincere, strategic, committed, open minded. So that sort of thing. So when we think about those soft skills traits that we would aspire to I think.

David (00:08:12) - Right. But soft skills are doing skills presenting managing leading time management whereas these are being skills. And so anyway if I ask the average CEO which six would you choose. If you could get everyone in your organization to be brilliant they'll say oh we need people to be adaptable. We need people to be organized, responsible, efficient, reliable, resilient, confident. creative, purposeful. I was like, whoa, hang on a minute. That's ten. But there's so many here that our young people aren't that we need them to be. Okay, well, let's hone in on ten. If we could get your entire workforce to be brilliant at the ten you've chosen, tell me what impact that would have on your productivity.

David (00:09:07) - Performance, profitability. And they're like, wow, we could grow our top line by 20%. We can improve our margins by 20%. We can reduce our first year churn and new staff members by 50%. And I said, okay, we'll put an economic value against each of those for me. Oh, that one would be worth 5 million. I want to be worth 3 million. That want to be worth a million. Okay. Well that's 9 million. So if you put your entire company through our program over the next 12 months, it's going to cost you £200,000 and you're going to get a 40 times return on investment, because we will help your employees become those ten character qualities which will drive the performance and productivity improvements you're looking for. Yeah.

Josh (00:09:54) - And so, David, I'm hoping just for our listener here, you know, how can we as leaders evoke more of some of these soft skills within our own organizations?

David (00:10:06) - Okay, well, sorry to be pedantic, but we don't help people learn or teach them soft skills.

David (00:10:12) - We help them learn and develop these 54 character qualities. Sure. And what we've done is we ended up going back to the research with the 77 essential soft skills that employers said their applicants and workforce lacked, that they needed them to have. And for each of those 77 soft skills, we mapped the six character qualities that you would need to be good at the soft skill. And so I'll give you a silly but true story. So when we every Monday at 10:00, everyone in our entire company gets on a zoom call for half an hour and they say this is the character quality I'm working on this week or this month to develop my professional side. And this is what I'm working on for my personal side. And we've taken on a new senior executive in the sales area, and he was a very experienced, highly accomplished sales executive. And so you go into breakout rooms and there's 3 or 4 people. And he was in the room with three female colleagues. And they're like, okay, so which professional character quality do you want to work on? He said, well, you know, I've just arrived.

David (00:11:31) - I'm newbie on the block. I need to be disciplined because I need to hit the phone, send out emails, follow up sales calls, and if I was more disciplined, I'd make more calls, book more demos. And they said, so why have you chosen disciplined? And he said, well, I'm so easily distracted by my mobile phone pinging off with slack messages or WhatsApp messages and I oh, who's called who's messaging me, you know. Should I reply immediately or whatever? And I'm not therefore focused on. And he said, have you got any tools or tips or ideas? And one of the others said, yes from 9:00 till 1015, put in your diary sales calls and from 1015 till 1030 coffee break from 1030 to 1145. Sales calls from 1145 to 12. Coffee break and leave your mobile phone in the kitchen next to the coffee machine so it's not pinging off and distracting you on your desk. And he's like, well, that's a very simple idea. I'll try that. The next week.

David (00:12:37) - He turned up to the meeting with the same group and they're like, oh, how did it all go? And he said, well, you know, I normally think a good week for me is if I've booked 20 demos, you know, some weeks is 18, some weeks is 22. I book 31 demos this week and I can tell you it's all down to being disciplined and following the advice you gave me. Well, he's suddenly 50% more productive by focusing on one character quality and one action. If you want. I can tell you it's a brilliant story. But the girls had said to him, what did you work on in your private life? And he said, oh, I've been married 30 years. I love my wife, we've had our first grandchild, and I really wanted to show my appreciation to my wife. So I decided to work on being kind. And I thought, what are 2 or 3 things that I could do that she'd really appreciate? And he said I could take the garbage out on Tuesday nights and put it on the sidewalk because the dustbin men come and collect it first thing in the morning and not be nagged and reminded to, I could just do it, and I could take the dog round the block at 9:00 at night before bedtime, you know, and never be nagged.

David (00:13:55) - Just get up and do it. We both leave our key car keys next to the front door, and she leaves her dry cleaning tickets there and her dry cleaners next to my gym, and I could take her tickets and pick it up and save her a trip into town later on. He said, I'm going to do those three things this week. So the following week the girl said, oh, how did that go? And he said, well, every Friday evening for the last 30 years, we've decided we're going to have a romantic date night dinner for two at home, just the two of us. And about 630, my wife comes and puts a gin and tonic on my table in my office and says, dinner's at seven. Tidy your desk, switch your phone off your mobile, off your laptop. Anyway, he she came in, you know, just after 630. There's no more gin and tonic down on the table. And she sat down in the chair next to him and had a gin and tonic herself.

David (00:14:47) - And he said that was unusual. And she said, right, I'm just going to come straight out with it. Are you having an affair? And he said, no, of course not. Why would you think that? Well, you've taken the dog out every night this week at 9:00 without being asked. You picked up my dry cleaning. You've taken took the garbage out. What's going on? He said, oh, I'm working on being kind. This character called of God. She said, well, whatever drugs they're giving you and please keep taking them because I love him. So after a week, just being conscious about working on two character qualities, he had a dramatic transformation in two aspects of his life. And any one of those 54 character qualities which, you know, people can go and see easily on our website. Any one of us could decide, you know, right? This week I need to work on being more confident or need to be welcoming, more open minded or collaborative, whichever one it is.

David (00:15:41) - And if you're conscious, like if in every meeting I have any every conversation, every task I do, how can I be more collaborative or whatever, then guess what? The end of a week, just by being conscious about it, it will dramatically affect the outcome.

Josh (00:15:58) - Yeah. David. I'm just thinking, you know, as leaders, what would happen if we encourage this, like, let's say even just on a, you know, a very small scale, we just, you know, with our core leadership team to say, right, you know, this month, you know, let's all pick a character trait that we can really dive into for ourselves. What do you think? And we we focused on one character trait each month or, you know, each two weeks or something like that. What what might happen to an organization by the end of a year?

David (00:16:27) - Well, let me answer that in two ways. So. Well, basically, I've got two friends who've got young children, and they put a character quality on the fridge in the kitchen, and the whole family talks about what would the benefits be of being more confident, how can you be more confident, you know, and tell us a story.

David (00:16:49) - When you got back from school today about how you were more confident. And so because it's in the narrative, then guess what? People consciously apply and work on it. The same applies in companies. When we start a new project in our company, we think about what are the character qualities you're going to need to perform that project to perfection? Who are the members of the team who are good at those character qualities? And we use character qualities to select team members for projects to make sure that we've got the right. So we'll start off a new projects, right. You know which of the character qualities we need to knock the ball out of the park with this one? analytical, you know, pioneering, creative, whatever it is. Okay. Well, who the who's got those character qualities in our company were? Him, him and her. Right. Well, let's get them to get the project done.

Josh (00:17:40) - David, your website again is Entelechy Academy. When someone has been listening to our conversation, goes to your website, what would you recommend they do when they go there?

David (00:17:50) - You can do a free character trial where you go in and do your own 180 and produces a report for you with a mock 360 and everything else data.

David (00:18:01) - But you can see the the quality and quantity of the amazing data that one character quality character report for an individual would look like. And you know, that costs $50. It's free for an individual, but if 100 people wanted to do it in your company, then it would be 100 times 50. there's next to nothing to get 15.7 billion data points on your organization's character competence.

Josh (00:18:32) - David Kim Carter, you are the chairman and founder of an Entelechy Academy, again found on the web at Intellect Academy. David, thank you so much for joining us.

David (00:18:45) - Thank you very much for inviting me.

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