growth // codex

Eleventh Issue

Growth // Codex Newsletter

A Weekly Digest Dedicated To Helping You

Produce // Promote // Profit Better // Smarter

Welcome back Rogue, this 11th issue of our Growth // Codex is dedicated to the round peg in a square hole – the person who is observing things happen in real-time, grasping the reality of things, and wondering why the hell it’s so hard to get people to work together, asking themselves “wtf am I missing?”

As I tend to tell our growing tribe “a pound of practice is worth a ton of theory”, and as we speak, through trial and error we’ve learned that it’s best to focus on a smaller population, the ROGUE, you.

So far, we’ve had our fair share of “warnings” from well meaning friends and colleagues. While theoretically they’re right, in practice we’re learning that to truly bring about much needed fcuk yes, we’re going to have to start with Fcuk Normal

Why? Why scale back and not reach out to millions? Why not go and buy ads on IG and tell every person with some talent to join this membership where we’ll “teach you how to be rich?”

Because the people pushing boundaries and defying odds are never in those groups

Simon Pegg Wink GIF

Back in 2010, I started a page that grew to a network of buddies, which grew to us being one of the first to start what is now known as the motivation page trend on IG – Motivation Mafia, Millionaire Mentor, Agent Steven, Success Quotes, Mavens Table, Mr Good Life and so on… it was a great and fun time, those are guys are people I admire, I enjoyed making money alongside them and love seeing them succeed in their endeavors

But, as trends tend to, there was soon an avalanche of everyone and their mother doing the same thing, which was expected – when something works its only natural for others to jump in

In hindsight, what i learned in practice though…

Motivation is perishable

Given the reality that we live in a society where Individualism is the way things work (the modus operandi) it’s only natural that effective collaboration would be one of our greatest pains

It affects whether companies make it, or die

If societies make it, or crumble 

It’s known as the Last Place Aversion Paradox, like a real-life game of hot potato or musical chairs, it’s a fear that afflicts people in second to last place of the income distribution model to oppose redistribution because it might allow people at the very bottom to catch up with them or even pass them by

chair fail GIF Last Place Aversion Paradox,

Sometimes, a hater // enemy makes for a fine ally

Back in 2016, I received an invite from the city of Doral // Miami to assist with some ambitious projects, they wanted to keep the talent in their cities, they watched helplessly as rising stars fled the city to NYC, San Francisco, Texas and so on. Being one of the very people that lured that talent out of Miami, I had a distinct advantage in knowing what they lacked 

If you find yourself navigating a room full of wolves In sheeps clothing, here’s a quick snapshot of what we did when tackling Miami – click to watch video

If you happen to find yourself needing that leap of faith, Growth // Haxx head of all things Business Dev Sean Gray was recently invited to share how he took the scary, and made it his strength

Listen at your convenience here

Now let’s move on to applying our ambitions to improve how we


Pro Tip:

The great accomplishment of Jobs’s life is how effectively he put his idiosyncrasies – his petulance, his narcissism, and his rudeness – in the service of perfection.

Malcolm Gladwell // Author of Outliers

A tried and tested model for repurposing the reality of individualism is people like Steve Jobs, and makes for a great foundation for you to build off of – whether you’re selfish, or consider yourself altruistic

Perfectionists don’t ship //

The more of you I meet, and talk to, the more I’m delighted to learn that we’re not perfectionists, we’re creative misfits

The old models were shown to not be stable, any emergency situation, a sharp turn in the winds and suddenly the whole thing crashes.

Oh No Oops GIF by CBC

While the news can’t get enough of the clicks and ratings that come with telling us about “food shortages” in came the creative misfits who approached the costs and low success rates of the restaurant industry by creating a bootstrap hybrid known as Ghost Kitchens: which in a nutshell is taking your favorite local restaurant, or an amazing Michelin chef, and having it delivered to your door – without the uber eats delivery, taxes, and handling fees.

In my hometown (Brooklyn, NY) some creative misfits took matters into their own hands and began setting up community fridges – the concept, so simple it kinda made some local officials and big monied charities look stupid 

postmark cafe park slope
gowanus community fridge

This has organically grown, mostly in part because in my hometown we also have for years had a similar concept with books and gently used goods – it’s not rare for someone to have a little library box in front of their home with amazing books that you can pick from – with an honor system that has keep it going for years

Because of that collaborative spirit, it’s not uncommon to find organic, fresh, and quality food in these fridges – just two days ago I swung by to drop off some goods and there was jars of Whole Foods sauces and bags of vegetables, fresh milk, almond milk, soups made by a local favorite restaurant and the coffee shop that sponsors this particular fridge had left visitors bags of their delicious coffee

When creative misfits want it bad enough, we find a way, any way to CREATE it

We recently learned of Ben Honeycutt, a determined guy that knew his experiences weren’t exclusive to him – but what’s an inexperienced aspiring writer to do? Well… this 😎🤟

Bleak: A Story of Bullying, Rage, and Survival
Bleak: A Story of Bullying, Rage, and Survival

In sharing some of his experiences, he learned that he wasn’t alone, so little by little, shift by shift, he created something that gets “people going.”

Slow and steady, consistency is EVERYTHING 

Take a peek at how his work is benefiting the people he set out to help

Bleak: A Story of Bullying, Rage, and Survival
Bleak: A Story of Bullying, Rage, and Survival
Bleak: A Story of Bullying, Rage, and Survival

What they, you, and I have in common is that we love to look at what everyone around us accepts as normal, and wonder “why” and “what if I…

As mentioned above, motivation is perishable, which is why we’re excited to start talking to Sarah Aviram, author of Remotivation: The Remote Worker’s Ultimate Guide To life-Changing Fulfillment – next week we’ll explore what she sees happening, what has been working, and where we she sees us going in 2021 – stay tuned! 

Which takes us to the second and fun part of this issue, growth is one part creation, two parts communication, let’s explore how others in our tribe are doing just that – screenshots are encouraged as we dig into improving how you and I


Pro Tip:

The real trouble with fakes, is that that keeping it real costs them their entire li(f)e”

Katriel C Sarfati
  • Altruism
  • Authenticity
  • Keeping it real

Buzzwords galore that you see thrown around right now with a lot of gores, all in the name of the same thing, brand awareness. Sure we could roll our eyes at how many struggle with keeping it real – but, there’s too many opportunities they’re setting up for us to care about what influencers phony, or how that “humble soul” on IG is in reality a sociopath

With so many normal people struggling with authenticity, we don’t really have the capacity or patience to put on theatrics (unless it’s putting on a kickass guerrilla PR stunt or creating the next big blockbuster)

Since everyone and their mother is now a marketer, consider this a refresher 

  • Stop talking at people
  • Address pain points 
  • Keep it simple

Here’s a glowing example of how a designers no bs approach helped them standout 

product design
product design

Whether you’re a designer, a chef, an office administrator, a doctor… an astronaut

The reality is that stripping things down to the basics, with a beginners mind tends to yield the best results

We try to be nice, we understand that this stuff doesn’t come that easy to everyone – every now and again I remind myself to throw a little niceness out there to those struggling, like these people using automated outreach software

Remember the city project mentioned above? How did we tackle attracting and keeping talent in south Florida? 

Especially when they know they can make double // triple the money by simple leaving? 

And how the hell do we make it happen when all we’re “helped” with is $1,200 to prove the concept?

We started by stripping it down to the basics:

What does the talent want? 

In our case, it came down to, make good money, and have successful careers that dont remain stagnant

Which led us to explore:

In what world (conditions) does this happen?

In our case, we discovered that so much was possible in a world where talent

  • Isn’t thrust into the regular degular worker bee process
  • Is around people who actually mean well
  • Has access to mentors who help them stress test ideas
  • Is rewarded for tackling bigger problems

Which then led us to explore

Where do we start in creating those conditions here?

Without divulging enough to get me in trouble for breach of privacy, I’ll summarize it by saying that the conditions were less than optimal, just like they didn’t like me saying that before, the truth is the truth – so we got to getting creative and with a budget of only $1,200 put together a campaign that attracted some folks from UPS, Amazon, Walmart, etc


We repeated the process of stripping down to the basics with those companies, and bridged the companies with the talent through a pitch contest // hackathon hybrid

katriel c sarfati hubb

Was it perfect? Fcukkkkk no

So many mishaps and little things went wrong

Was it effective? Fcuk yes

No one in the audience even knew there were hiccups, no one knew we had a budget that made this almost impossible – the empanadas helped a lot

katriel c sarfati growth hacker
katriel c sarfati doral miami

What we ran with was that the most effective way to promote better // smarter is to 

  • Stop talking at people
  • Address pain points 
  • Keep it simple

When taking on a campaign, or brand awareness, or anything marketing related – we always begin by writing at the very top of our sheet of paper

  • ‘What do we want to achieve?”
  • Who do we need to achieve ___?”
  • “What are their pain points?”
  • “What can we do // give to help them?”

The most powerful way to tackle the last place aversion paradox is to focus on what needs to get gone (a true north) not how it needs to get done, empower the right people, and step back – you’re there to help them now

Regardless of what you’re promoting, your product // service is there to help your customer

  • Do
  • Have
  • Become ___ 

Now, for this weeks segment on improving how we 


Pro Tip:

The most altruistic man is the most selfish

Abraham Lincoln
10 Things You May Not Know About Abraham Lincoln - HISTORY

The story goes that Lincoln was traveling in a mud-wagon coach along a swampy, rural area with his good friend and US Senator Edward Dickinson Baker

Making the best of the sweaty commute, they talked about politics, finance, and life in general, at one point Lincoln remarked to Baker that in doing good and evil, all people are motivated by selfishness. 

What are you getting on about?” Balked Baker “That doesn’t make sense, there are selfish men, and there are selfless men, you of all people should know that

A few minutes and several topics later, their coach crossed a rickety bridge over a large swampy marsh.

The two men noticed a mother pig making a terrible squeal because her piglets were stuck in a swamp, and appeared to be in danger of drowning

When Lincoln noticed their driver didn’t slow down, he yelled, “Driver, can’t you stop just a moment?” 

The driver replied, “If the Senator don’t object.”

Baker nods in approval, and Lincoln jumps out of the wagon, takes off running, jumps into the slough, starts picking up the piglets one by one, and carries them to a dry bank

david hasselhoff cali GIF by Baywatch

As Lincoln, now covered in mud up to his thighs comes within earshot, Baker slyly remarks, “Now, Abe, where does selfishness come in this little episode of yours?”

Lincoln replies, “Why, bless your soul, Ed, that was the very essence of selfishness. I would have had no peace of mind all day had I gone on and left that suffering old sow worrying over those pigs. I did it to get peace of mind, don’t you see?

What does this have to do with this weeks Profit section? What do any of us do with our skills, our ambitions and creative instincts? We jump in the mud, we pick those piglets up, and we have a hearty laugh about it afterwards

Without boring you with all the data and why’s, I’ll go on record predicting that those of us that got all muddy these past 6 months are in for a spectacular Spring 2021. 

Last week we shared with you how Jamil, former Comedian turned Real Estate player and founder of Astro Flipping was himself jumping in the muddy water of wholesale real estate, a niche in the real estate field that is both blessing and curse, agents hate them, investors tend to approach with caution

micro flipping astro flipping
micro flipping astro flipping
I think it’s safe to assume they don’t like wholesalers

With any industry or space that has a low bar of entry, there’s always going to be 

  • An abundance of competition
  • An abundance of corner cutting
  • An abundance of copy cats

And last but definitely not least, an abundance of opportunities these people leave wide open for you

As we mentioned in the previous issue, Sean Gray, our go to for all things Sales and Business Dev would be setting off into Astro Flipping land this month. Profiting smarter being the goal here via the micro flipping model

In his own words


“So tell us, since you’ve started, what’s it been like?”


“The immediate problem Astro Flipping solves is the annoying daisy chain problem, you’ve got deals dying because of 3, 5, even 6 people somehow involved in a single deal”


“WTF, how is that even possible?”


These people are spending so much time and effort on marketing to get to prospective buyers, they’re cold calling, they’re putting up bandit signs, its a whole lot of energy for these wholesalers to put a property under contract”


“That sounds like a recipe for massive competition and a cut throat environment”


“Oh, dude you have no idea, from people flagging your posts on Craigslist to acquiring a deal that often doesn’t have the numbers to make both the seller and their buyer happy… it’s pretty wild”


“Aight man, give it to us straight, how is micro flipping different then?”


“So far what I’m seeing is that Astro Flipping is like a collaboration, the ones who secure the honest deal, at a fair price to the seller tends to get their deals through the quickest, they focus on doing what they’re good at, I now am responsible for making sure they get rewarded for their hard work at a fair price”


“CREATE, don’t compete then?”


“100%, I’m learning that while everyone else is running after the same thing, we’re going in through the side door”


“Haha, I just imagine a bunch of people trying to run through the same door… ”


“EXACTLY, it’s crowded – this way has been a lot more fun and honestly, as you already know, I much rather get paid to be me, I love putting the right people together, it’s a Win-Win-Win”

Sean recently learned about one of his new colleagues Curtis, who in his 60’s, with little to no tech-savvy, profited over $50k by CREATING, not competing 

Alright you creative misfit, thats enough for this weeks issue

Now go on, there’s much work to do, much progress to be made my friend 

Till next week, here’s to escaping average 🤟

Hold Up Wait A Minute GIF by ABC Network

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