Teacher pivots to educate entrepreneurs with The $100 MBA and Webinar Ninja- Meet Nicole Baldinu| Ep #57

February 9, 2023

Teacher Nicole Baldinu traded in the classroom to educate entrepreneurs with The $100 MBA and Webinar Ninja. In this epsiode of the Second Act Success Podcast, Nicole shares her journey. She studied education in Australia, and began teaching abroad right after college. After teaching for 10 years or so, she got the itch to try […]

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Nicole Baldinu, Co-founder and COO of WebinarNinja and The $100 MBA


Teacher Nicole Baldinu traded in the classroom to educate entrepreneurs with The $100 MBA and Webinar Ninja. In this epsiode of the Second Act Success Podcast, Nicole shares her journey. She studied education in Australia, and began teaching abroad right after college. After teaching for 10 years or so, she got the itch to try something new. It was then that she moved to New York City to study film. Nicole worked as a filmmaker in the big city, until her husband Omar Zenhom asked for help with his business. Together the two teamed up and built two successful tech businesses educating others on how to succeed in business. Their million dollar businesses include The $100 MBA and Webinar Ninja. Nicole also co-hosts the podcast Nicole and Kate Can Relate. Let’s dive into Nicole Baldinu’s Second Act Success story, as she explains how these twists and turns along her path led her to teach and lead in a whole new way. This is the Second Act Success Podcast.


CONNECT with Nicole Baldinu:
The $100 MBA – 100mba.net/show
Webinar Ninja – webinarninja.com
Nicole and Kate Can Relate Podcast – canrelatepodcast.com
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/nicolebaldinu
LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/nicolebaldinu


0:00 – Introduction

03:28 – Career in teaching

07:54- Taking a weekend film course 

10:18 – Deciding to take the leap and resign from teaching 

11:34 – Moving to New York City for film school at the New York Film Academy

14:58 – Working in New York City

16:28 – Deciding to pivot to help her husband with his business. They teamed up to run The $100 MBA

18:10 – The $100 MBA business and podcast

19:44 – Webinar Ninja business

20:48 – Working with your partner

22:30 – Never leaving teaching behind, she is still educating in a different way.

23:30 – Advice on starting a business

25:54 – How webinars can help a business

27:24 – Nicole and Kate Can Relate Podcast

29:44 – 5 Fast Qs

30:40 – Advice on changing careers

32:38 – Connect with Nicole Baldinu


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Second Act Success Podcast
Season 1 - ​​Teacher turned Tech Founder Educates Entrepreneurs on Business | Ep #57
Guest: Nicole Baldinu
Host: Shannon Russell
Transcription (*created by Descript and may not be perfectly accurate)


[00:01:52] Shannon Russell: Boy, do I have a great story for you today? We are going to be chatting with Nicole Baldinu new. She started off [00:02:00] in education out of Australia. She decided that she wanted to not only teach children, but travel the world. And she did that next. She decided, um, maybe this isn't for me. Let me get into film. And she tried film school. And now she owns two businesses and hosts an incredible podcast. I can't wait to get into how she went from teaching in Australia to owning two very successful businesses here in the states. So let's get to it. This is Nicole Baldinu and her Second Act Success story. Hi

Nicole. Welcome to Second Act Success. How you doing?

[00:02:39] Nicole Baldinu: Hey Shannon, really great to be here. Thank you. I'm doing well,

[00:02:42] Shannon Russell: I'm so excited to get to know you and hear about your story. So you began your career in education, is that right?

[00:02:49] Nicole Baldinu: correct? Yeah, the reason I actually chose, teaching as a career was because I didn't actually grow up with a lot of stability in terms of financial stability so for me, as soon as I [00:03:00] had the opportunity, like there was no question that for after high school, I'd go to university. But when it came to actually choosing what I would study, it would have to be something that would guarantee a career, a safe career, a very long-term career. And so I chose Educat.

[00:03:18] Shannon Russell: that is a very stable career. You know, you can teach until retirement. So that was very practical. Were you always interested in kids growing up? Were you babysitting?

[00:03:29] Nicole Baldinu: It's funny, because. Clearly as this podcast, the premise of this show, there's a second act, right? So I'm currently not teaching, but the, the teaching of kids, um, wasn't necessarily something that, that was the reason why I left. I actually enjoyed, uh, the students. You know, there are a lot of fun. I taught teenagers for most of my career.

so they're a lot of fun. You know, they can be a wild bunch and you've got all spectrums of, you know, behavioral issues. But in, in general, like teaching kids was great. [00:04:00] And even though I didn't have that as an experience, like you said, like babysitting, it wasn't anything that, kind of pushed me to teach in that regard.

But, what actually I enjoyed was languages and I always enjoyed being in the classroom. I enjoyed being a student and so I could see myself in that teacher-student relationship of just being in that environment that I really thrived and I really enjoyed. So it made sense to me. Well. I like languages. I like the classroom environment. I enjoy being a student, so why not, you know, be a teacher?

[00:04:33] Shannon Russell: And so you went to school in Sydney?

[00:04:36] Nicole Baldinu: Yes. Yeah. I grew up, I was born and raised in Sydney. Yeah. Parents were Italian. They migrated to Australia in the late seventies, and I was born, you know, not too far after, but grew up in Sydney.

[00:04:46] Shannon Russell: wonderful. That's my destination that I just wish to go to one day. So . Fingers crossed.

[00:04:53] Nicole Baldinu: we're waiting for you. Definitely

[00:04:56] Shannon Russell: So you go to university and you get your degree in [00:05:00] education, and you are a teacher to high school.

[00:05:02] Nicole Baldinu: Yes. I studied languages and I thought, okay, that sounds like a great idea. I'm gonna be a language teacher. I studied French, Spanish, Italian, those were all my languages, but midway through my education, one of my professors said, you know, you have a better chance of getting a job, as an ESL teacher, as an English as a second language teacher. It was a conversation, a very brief conversation that made me decide, oh, I'll switch my major and you know, my will be my minor and English is a second, language will be my major and therefore I can, I can teach overseas. Which was kind of another thing that I thought, oh, Attractive about teaching the opportunity to teach overseas. Pretty much after I graduated and had a very short, uh, I took a maternity leave position at one of the schools here, I got an offer to teach in Japan, and that pretty much, you know, started the next years of my life where I started teaching overseas and not teaching in a.[00:06:00]

[00:06:00] Shannon Russell: How was that experience?

[00:06:02] Nicole Baldinu: Japan was amazing. It was, you know, it's a very unique place. It's a great country to live in. And it was my first time really living abroad, and I was only 24 at the time. So there were elements of culture shock that I experienced, but it was, you know, it was a lot of fun. I was able to do the, the career that I had embarked on, I was earning more than I could have earned here in Australia as a starting out teacher. So that was also very attractive at the time as well. And I was living o overseas and I could travel and, you know, have all these stories. great experiences to tell. I thought, oh, this is great. I'm definitely on the right path, you know?

[00:06:42] Shannon Russell: When did things start to change

[00:06:44] Nicole Baldinu: I was in teaching for 12 years before I left, so this is my first two years in teaching that I was in Japan. I returned to Australia and. Worked for a little bit here, and then I got the bug again. I was like, where's the next place to go to? Cause remember [00:07:00] I was sold this, you know, dream from that professor that if I had taught, you know, English as a second language, I could teach all over the world. So when I came back, I was like, okay, it's great. I, I'm happy to be home, but I still had that desire to travel and to see the world. So I was like, where's next? You know, where's the next destination? And a lot of people at that time, started talking about Dubai as one of the destinations. I ended up then making that the next stop. And that was, six years of teaching. So it was finally in Dubai that then things started to change. I had already, stacked up over 10 years in the classroom between Japan, Australia, and Dubai, that I started to feel like, this isn't actually where my heart's at. This isn't where I see myself for the rest of my life.

[00:07:48] Shannon Russell: Where did you see yourself? What was your underlying passion of what you wanted to do?

[00:07:54] Nicole Baldinu: You know, I wasn't sure at the time, and one thing I didn't tell you at the beginning [00:08:00] was that when I did go into teaching and I thought it was a sensible career and it was a wise choice, I did always think it would be a fallback. I thought this is something that I'm pretty sure I don't wanna do for the rest of my life, but it's a smart decision and I can always fall back on it. But I never really looked for something else until that time when I was in Dubai and I started to really question, and at that time I just felt like it's now or never. I felt stifled in. you Know, teaching isn't a creative, career. It can be, but there are so many restrictions. If you think about your timetable, where you've gotta be, all of that, it's very, very restrictive and I just wanted something that I gave me more flexibility and I knew I wanted to do something creative and so I started to think, well, what can I do? I really didn't feel like I could do anything else. I didn't feel like I had any other skills,[00:09:00] so I just decided to do a short filmmaking course, just one weekend and. and I thought, well, if I can just do this two day weekend course and see if this is something that I'm want to, you know, pursue further, I might think about, you know, going to study film and yeah, that's how it happened. I thought this sounds really fun, this looks interesting. Let me resign and go to New York. That's what I did.

[00:09:28] Shannon Russell: Wow. So you took this course, where was the course? Was it Dubai?

[00:09:31] Nicole Baldinu: It was in Dubai. I was still teaching. Um, I hadn't given my notice or anything, and I, and I knew I'd have to give six months notice, so I just literally did this weekend thing just to see if this was a possibility of something else that I could do. And so when I did think like, all right, I could probably go and study and do something else, um, which sounds really grandiose at the time. I think back to that person, I'm like, Go you, Nicole, , like, I think I've become, [00:10:00] yeah, I've probably become a little bit more, you know, cautious, uh, as I've gotten older.

[00:10:05] Shannon Russell: But that's exciting. The fact that you just saw something about this course, you went and took it. Obviously that was a pretty cool course if it made you think about upping your life and just completely changing your path.

[00:10:18] Nicole Baldinu: Yes. And I think sometimes it, it just might be an excuse that you need. Like, I think it had always been building, right, this desire to do something different. It's that either listening to your gut, your intuition, that little voice that you kind of, you know, tell to be quiet more often than not. And so I think it was always building. so it was just a very easy way to say, well, this looks like. I could learn to do something different and I knew with giving six months notice that it would give me a bit of time to, you know, have a, build a bit of a runway, a bit of savings plan my next move. It was enough time. It was probably not a long time, but it was enough time to say, okay, I've handed in my [00:11:00] resignation. Okay, let me decide then where I'm gonna move to and what filmmaking course I'm gonna do.

[00:11:06] Shannon Russell: I think that's nice cuz so many times, guests or my clients will be sitting here thinking they have to do that jump tomorrow. And so having that six month leadway must have just given you a little bit of a breath to not feel so rushed. You made this gigantic decision, but you had time to kind of map it out. So within that time, were you dead set on going to New York City? How did you kind of plan that next move once the six months were up?

[00:11:34] Nicole Baldinu: I didn't know where I was going. New York came up as an option when I was talking to my now husband, Omar, who at the time we were just friends and he's from New York. I was open to going anywhere really. I knew I didn't wanna come home though, which was funny. And so he suggested, why don't you check out New York Film Academy that's a really highly reputable, academy.

I started to, you [00:12:00] know, imagine a research New York look it up and all of these things, and I thought, oh yeah, actually this could be a great option. I saw that they were offering a short course that coincidentally started pretty much. A few weeks after the school year would end and I was leav. I had some savings by then and it was pretty penny because it is New York and . One of the other things I think I thought of at the time, cause I was already in my thirties, and I'm making this decision. So if I'm now going to put this next thing on my cv, cause I was still thinking of CVS and resumes, that's. My, my head was at, I was like, well, it better be from the best place that's got a reputation that will give me kind of that leg up. That's how I came to land on, New York Film Academy. And Oma joined me a few months later and, and we teamed up there as well. So there was a whole romance to that as well.

[00:12:50] Shannon Russell: How amazing. So, New York was just another step on that. Travel the world kind of adventure you were on. So tell me about New York. How was this next jaunt into [00:13:00] filmmaking for you?

[00:13:01] Nicole Baldinu: Well, I had the time of my life because I was, doing something so different and so free and fun, you know, compared to being in, in a classroom. I was in a classroom now, but there were people from all over the world. New York Film Academy attracts all these students. Who were a lot younger than I was because they're just, you know, at the beginning of their journey.

So, you know, I had a, I made a lot of friends from everywhere and we would, you know, team up for the little projects that we had to do to, to present our teachers and. I learned a ton, you know, I was just a sponge, you know, for everything that was being, handed to us because I thought, oh, you know, I have to make this work. You know, I did feel that sense of like, If this is what I'm gonna do now I have to give it my all. And as soon as, We were graduating, I started to look for, well, what can I start working on? I really didn't want to be [00:14:00] without work. You know, I'd kind of had a whole life where I was just always making sure that I was never without work. I think that, you know, came , from my upbringing. There was a, a bulletin board in, in one of the rooms that we were in, in the building. There was this, artist who was advertising for, a videographer to film him while he was producing, artworks around New York that he would exhibit at the end of, of the. I thought, I'm gonna go for that. I'm gonna apply for this cause I need to start working right away. I ended up applying for this, for this little job that it was for free, but I knew would be my kind of, you know, entry into filmmaking and got it.

[00:14:43] Shannon Russell: How was it? I come from the TV world, so I'm very used to freelance going from project to project. So now you're here working for free on this project and are you thinking this is amazing, but it's only another couple of weeks and I have to look for the next job.

[00:14:58] Nicole Baldinu: Yeah, I had [00:15:00] saved up, so I had a, a bit of a runway. I realized how inexperienced I was. You know, and how fortunate I was to even just be doing something for, for free just to get the experience. So I think I was just a hundred percent focused on this being really awesome, which was a little bit naive because, you know, your first work is never gonna be great.

But for me, I was like, I have to make this great. I have to, and of course, as I look back on it now, it's very cringeworthy, but you have to ha you have to have that cringeworthy work, right?

[00:15:31] Shannon Russell: Yes, we all have it.

[00:15:34] Nicole Baldinu: so, you know, it also gave me motivation to realize that like I had momentum. And I think that's really important as soon as you start to make these changes that you have momentum. and I'm very thankful for the fact that I allowed myself to take these opportunities, which meant that then the next opportunity would come.

As soon as that gig wrapped up, I, put my CV up on, I think it was, there's some site in New York where you [00:16:00] advertise, and I. A response right away. My first gig was like $500. It was peanuts. you know, I did so much work for that first $500 gig, but it meant the world that I just had picked up the next thing.

[00:16:12] Shannon Russell: Mm-hmm. . . All of your hard work was kind of coming together and your second career was just like taking off in a, in a whole new way. So how long were you filmmaking in New York and how far did you really take that aspect of your journey?

[00:16:28] Nicole Baldinu: Not very far. It was a short lived career in the sense that I realized, I think probably on my fourth project, that I didn't wanna be making other people's movies. But I had learned so much and I had had so much fun. And at the same time, while that was going on, while I was freelancing, Omar and I, my now husband had teamed up and he was building his, business. It was a consultancy business, and he came to me at a certain point. So we're talking about, I'd say it was [00:17:00] about six, seven months. and he said, you know, I, I've got this idea for an online business community I've got the content and the curriculum built out, but I would need someone to shoot the videos.

How about we work together? He'd been helping me. With my gigs, you know, negotiating rates, all those things in business that I wasn't very comfortable with, and I just needed someone to bounce ideas off. He was helping me with that. I was kind of giving him some input into his consultancy business. So when he came to me and said, you know, we can marry our skills together and do something together, how does that sound? And you know, after trying to get client, after client chasing up invoices, making sure I'm getting paid, I. Okay, this sounds good. Let's do this.

So that's when I pretty much abandoned, the dream of, being some sort of director or filmmaker and, um, putting my skills that I'd learned to, to our business, The Hundred Dollar MBA

[00:17:53] Shannon Russell: right. So you're working together and you're using all of those skills and even the skills from teaching, even the skills from, really [00:18:00] setting up an idea and kind of working towards teaching your future customers or clients. Tell me how. , this business really took off and what it's all.

[00:18:10] Nicole Baldinu: The Hundred Dollar MBA is an online business training community for people to start an online business, to leave their side hustle, to get the foundations of business without going to business school. For a hundred dollars. That was the, the entry point. We built the The Hundred Dollar MBA and we were getting members into the community. And we started a, a podcast that didn't do so well, that flopped earlier on. And while we were, you know, trying to get members into the, The Hundred Dollar MBA, Omar started to run webinars. he was putting, a webinar together every week, and this is back in 2014 when there weren't really that many, many options out there.

And it was just a, a headache to put a webinar together every, every week. So he kind of slapped together a piece of software with a freelance developer to start [00:19:00] running webinars for the a The Hundred Dollar MBA. And when we were running those webinars to get these new members in, someone had asked him, what are you using to run this webinar? and he said, oh, just look something I slapped together. And then somebody said, can I buy it? at that moment he realized, okay, there's an opportunity cuz he's got this business brain. He'd been side hustling, building businesses for years. He saw an opportunity to build a webinar platform, to have a webinar product a. And he came to me with that idea and he says, you know, I think we can do this because we were building the The Hundred Dollar MBA and it was growing, but it was growing very slowly. The number of members coming in aren't as many as, you know, when we had a, a massive launch at the start.

So he, um, came up with the idea for Webinar Ninja, which is our other company. We've got two c. and that's where Webinar Ninja came about to be. So while we are, you know, building these two things, we've got the The Hundred Dollar MBA, we've got Webinar Ninja, we still [00:20:00] believed in podcasting. You know, podcasting was something we had attempted to try and do, but kind of failed at it.

And we thought, no, but we wanna give it another go. And so we. Launched the The Hundred Dollar MBA Show Podcast, which you know, has done very, very well. I'm very grateful to say, those things just really keep us busy full-time.

[00:20:21] Shannon Russell: That's fantastic. And who knew, right? You're in New York at this time, right?

[00:20:25] Nicole Baldinu: We had moved to San Diego.

[00:20:27] Shannon Russell: So now you're in San Diego, which is perfect cuz there's so many different startups in the business world there too. And you're just working as a team. Were you married at this point?

[00:20:37] Nicole Baldinu: No, not yet. We were engagement. We had a very long engagement, but not married.

[00:20:42] Shannon Russell: So how was that even working with your fiance to create these two businesses? Because creating a business is not an easy.

[00:20:49] Nicole Baldinu: It's not, and you know, being in business now, we're in our 10th year. You have to be grateful for every day that you are in business. It's not something we take very lightly. I [00:21:00] think Oma and I got very lucky in a sense that we were able to have, complimentary skills.

We were just colleagues, before we were even, a couple. possible we had that foundation. We get that question all the time. Like, oh my God, how can you work with your spouse? Don't you wanna kill each other? I get that. I do get that. I see, I can see why people would say that. Uh, we've made it work, but we're very intentional about, our roles. And how we support each other, in our respective roles as well. I'm really lucky, , but I think that sounds really trite. . It does take work.

[00:21:36] Shannon Russell: It takes work, but you're balancing two businesses and a podcast, so there's plenty of work to be done. So you can stay in your lane, work on what you're doing, and, and meet up in the middle. It's a good, good teamwork. How are you able to make both businesses and the podcast so successful?

[00:21:54] Nicole Baldinu: The podcast, you know, a huge credit to Omar who's been, you know, publishing and [00:22:00] recording over 2000 episodes. We're talking eight years, you know, so it's, it's. It's, it's consistency. The consistency has paid off, the commitment to a consistent production and a consistent show has paid off.

He's a c e o webinar ninja. He draws a lot of stories. A lot of our experiences, feed into the show. A lot of listeners of the show who then need a webinar platform who are thinking about starting webinars will then, you know, come across over to, so they do feed each other very, very well.

I guess ultimately to, we've never left behind our teaching backgrounds, you know, we're both teachers and even though we left a career, Traditional educators behind. So much of what we do with the The Hundred Dollar MBA and with Webinar Ninja comes from a teaching first philosophy, you know, before marketing, before a hyper salesy philosophy.

We with teachers above all, and I think that's what attracts people to the show and to the webinar platform as well.

[00:22:59] Shannon Russell: It's [00:23:00] definitely that thread that. links all your different aspects of your journey together. A lot of our listeners on Second Act Success are trying to figure out what their next step is. Do I wanna go back to school for a new job? Do I want to just start, with a creative passion, do I wanna change roles all completely? So if they're interested in, possibly going back to business school and you have this great option, tell us a little bit about what the The Hundred Dollar MBA might be able to do for some listeners who are on the fence about business school.

[00:23:31] Nicole Baldinu: I think there's a lot of content out there that you can get for free Or for a very low cost, like the The Hundred Dollar MBA. The Hundred Dollar MBA is no longer the flagship the podcast is really where we deliver all our content. so I would definitely say, and this was my personal experience too, with that two-day filmmaking course.

To not, dump a whole massive amount of money into something that, you're not a hundred percent [00:24:00] sure about. It might not apply to every single career. Like if you are going into nursing, I mean, there's, there's definitely careers that you will need to invest in, , a longer educational path.

But if you are looking to learn business skills, there's just so much out there that you can just kind of, dip your toes, do a short course, do a couple of weeks, just to real feel like, is this something that I'm, I'm interested in?

Do I wanna learn more? Am I more curious? Does this light me up? Before you're going to dump that, a hundred thousand dollars investment

[00:24:30] Shannon Russell: So many times you just want it quickly and spending that money you think is gonna bring it to you faster. And I have a story, I feel like I've shared it on the podcast before, but when I left television production, I was trying to figure myself out, find what I wanted to do next, and I was like, well, teach.

Maybe I wanna teach, just kind of like out of the blue that's stable. Let me try it. I signed up for a master's program and I guess I was about a year and a half in, so I was working, but [00:25:00] I was taking these classes at night and I realized I don't wanna go in the classroom. And I ended up opening my own business, which was teaching STEM education to kids.

So there was some aspect of it, and I always say, I'm grateful for the, the program and every month when my card gets swiped, because I'm still paying it off, that it's a blessing cuz it brought me to where I needed to be as an entrepreneur. But I do look back and I'm like, why was I so quick to, to jump into it when I could have taken your advice and just done some more research and looked within myself a little bit more before making a big decision.

[00:25:37] Nicole Baldinu: Yeah, that underlying motivation, like what is it? Sometimes I feel like people just need a different job, , you know? A tree change. A sea change,


[00:25:47] Shannon Russell: So for listeners of mine that are, looking into starting a business or growing their business, how can Webinar Ninja help them?

[00:25:55] Nicole Baldinu: running webinars is a great way to build your audience, to start testing ideas as [00:26:00] well. Like we have, people running q and a, webinars ask me anything, webinars, just a way to engage with potential customers, a potential audience that you want to, you know, Deliver value to, you can run, you know, free workshops that people now are so accustomed to signing up to and, and joining, and being able to validate ideas like you might have a course idea that you wanna do, so you can validate that on, on a webinar, um, you can test out product ideas as well. It's just a great way to be able to teach, to deliver value, to test ideas. And it doesn't have to be our tool, it can be like a similar tool of course, but it's just such a great opportunity for people to get there faster. I if you think back years ago, 10 years ago, the tools that that didn't exist, how much longer it would take for businesses to get off the ground, an idea to get off the ground.

I think the opportunities now are. It's so much faster for somebody to have an idea, test it out, and then decide if they wanna pursue it further or just, you know, move on to the next [00:27:00] idea.

[00:27:01] Shannon Russell: You really are offering such great tools between both of your businesses for people just no matter where they are in their entrepreneurial journey or trying to get to that next step. It's definitely your educational background that's, leading you in your businesses now. That's wonderful to see.

[00:27:17] Nicole Baldinu: Oh, thank you.

[00:27:18] Shannon Russell: So you have a podcast with Omar, and what about your other podcast that you have as well?

[00:27:24] Nicole Baldinu: So The Hundred Dollar MBA is Omar as the host. But the other podcast that I launched with my girlfriend, Kate Erickson, who's the other half at, , Entrepreneurs On Fire, is called Nicole and Kate Can Relate, we've been part of a mastermind with another friend, Cass, we catch up every month. We share our business struggles, our personal struggles. It's just a really, judgment free, safe space for us, three women to support each other and talk through the challenges that we're. and we just realized that, it would be great if we could have these conversations and share them with, other women, with other listeners who might be feeling the same, [00:28:00] feel less alone to realize that there, sometimes a lot of your problems or a lot of the things that you've got going on are in your head.

And as soon as you get them out, you can feel so much better. You can feel so much more confident, you can just feel energized. And so we wanted to take that to, to other, other people out there.

[00:28:16] Shannon Russell: I love the idea and I have to tell you that I love Kate. I'm a huge fan of Entrepreneurs on Fire and John Lee Dumas, they're just wonderful people,

[00:28:24] Nicole Baldinu: I'm so lucky there. I mean, yeah, Kate's got a heart of gold. She's just an awesome person, an awesome human being. And, um, she just, yeah, has a, a lot of experience in podcasting and I'm so grateful to have her as a co-host.

[00:28:45] Shannon Russell: Name one thing that these different chapters in your life have taught you.

[00:28:49] Nicole Baldinu: I feel like adaptability is something that, it's a skill that I realize that I have, that I probably undervalued, , but as I stepped back and I looked back on, you [00:29:00] know, the last 20 years or so, I realized, oh, I've been able to move to different places, different cultures, different cities, different countries, change careers, and I feel like that, I look to that skill of, of being able to adapt to very different or difficult situations. And I look to that in, in business. I see that as a, as a complimentary skill to resilience. I call on that skill when we have setbacks in business because they're inevitable, they're gonna happen. so I feel like, adaptability is something that I really value now and, and feel proud that, that these chapters have taught me.

[00:29:38] Shannon Russell: Would you recommend taking a leap into a big life change to your best friend?

[00:29:43] Nicole Baldinu: I would, with a few considerations, I suppose. I think an appetite for risk , is important to consider. I don't think everyone has the same appetite for risk and with big changes comes that, acceptance of risk, of failure, of setbacks, of [00:30:00] difficulty. So I would definitely, assess where my friend is at in terms of their appetite for risk. I love thinking of worst case scenarios because I feel like as if you're comfortable with the worst case scenario, then it makes the decision a lot easier. Like if you're okay with the worst case scenario, what's the worst that could happen then? And if they are, then I'd say, okay, then, then, then go for it. I definitely would also wanna know what their motivation is, like, what is motivating that big change. And sometimes you have to dig really, really deep, to see like, what is it that I'm actually really looking for in this massive life change? But yeah, I'd want my friends to not have any regrets though, for.

[00:30:40] Shannon Russell: I love that. What is one piece of advice that you would give to someone who is starting their second act today?

[00:30:46] Nicole Baldinu: I think this is probably gonna sound a bit cliche, but, you know, relationships are everything. Start surrounding yourself with people that are doing what you, what you are wanting to do. And don't discount any person that comes your way. And this is [00:31:00] not about like, oh, what can I gain from everyone? Because I really believe that you're going to get as much as you give. But I think, uh, to start focusing on the relationships that you build and the people that come into your life and who's around you. The relationships that I've had now have just paid off and have just been, you know, the most incredible part of this journey. The people that I've, you know, I'm surrounded.

[00:31:22] Shannon Russell: and it's beneficial to them as well. It goes both

[00:31:24] Nicole Baldinu: Exactly. Oh, a hundred percent. Yeah, a hundred percent.

[00:31:28] Shannon Russell: What does the next chapter look like for you?

[00:31:31] Nicole Baldinu: Well, I alluded to this before, like I don't take, very lightly or for granted that, the businesses are still around, that we're still, you know, in business after so many years. So definitely, there's growth for the Hundred Dollar MBA. I'm really looking to continue to support Omar and the team that we have, which is incredible, behind the Hundred Dollar MBA show podcast.

We definitely have ambitions to be the number one business podcast. You know, we're almost there so I've definitely. Supporting that mission Webinar Ninja. You [00:32:00] know, continuing to grow and supporting the community and being that tool for empowering creators and empowering people to, you know, monetize their expertise online, build a business if that's what they wanna do, just to be there, to continue to grow that and be that tool for them. Still massively passionate about. And now I'm just, enjoying my time with Kate once a week when we get on the mic and we have our conversations and we record those. So yeah, I think I'm just gonna keep doing what I've been doing for the time being.

[00:32:30] Shannon Russell: Fantastic. So where can our audience connect with you? All the places. . You have so many

[00:32:37] Nicole Baldinu: Quite, yeah, I've got quite a few. If they wanna reach out to me personally, my favorite, social platform is Instagram. So I'm just @nicolebaldinu but if they're after, free business lessons, they can visit the Hundred Dollar MBA show podcast on any podcast app.

And if they're curious about running webinars, they can visit webinarninja.com as.

[00:32:57] Shannon Russell: Nicole, this was so lovely and [00:33:00] I have so enjoyed hearing your story and your journey and I love that it all connects around education and teaching people and just bringing good into the world and you're just such a, inspiration to me into our listeners. I'm sure.

[00:33:14] Nicole Baldinu: Oh my gosh. Thank you, Shannon. Thank you so much. I had a lot of fun.

[00:33:17] Shannon Russell: Thank you. Me too.

Nicole has had quite the journey. Going into education, teaching abroad in different countries, deciding to leave that, to explore the world of film, becoming a filmmaker. Pivoting once again, and going into business with her now, husband. Now they have two successful businesses and a podcast. Something that I will take away from this conversation is the idea of adaptability. Nicole thinks adaptability is something that she still uses in business today. The fact that she was able to adapt. When she was in Japan and Dubai and other locations abroad, then she was adaptable when she went and joined film school. And then she was adaptable when she [00:34:00] started working in her businesses. I really think that's a great skill and a great personality trait to have. I really liked that she brought that up as something that she has kind of carried with her through all these different chapters in her career. Great conversation with Nicole. I hope you found some really valuable gems in this episode, and I'm going to link to all of the places that you can connect with Nicole in the show notes. That is it for today? If you enjoyed this episode and you want to connect some more, I urge you to go to secondactsuccess.co and sign up for my newsletter. You will get an email once a week with career advice. Tips. Information on different programs that I'll be running and the podcast and everything else that is in the second X success world. I would love to have you join. I look forward to speaking with you on the next episode of Second Act Success. Make it your best day yet? Have a good one.



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Episode #55: Marketing to Mindfulness with Rebecca Hellmann