Axon Unleashed S1 E2: The Phone Call That Changed Everything...

Axons are part of the neuro-transmission system in the brain… they carry the spark between the neurons to fire the body into action!

Join our hosts Robbie, Tamara, Dan and Dane as they uncover the untold truths of what it really takes to successfully transition from the ADF, how to build a multi-million-dollar property portfolio, how to start a business as a veteran entrepreneur and how to more effectively communicate with your partner… while optimising your personal performance in every aspect of your life.

Listen in to Episode 2 to hear how an unexpected phone call and a life-changing injury to Robbie nearly made Axon go under after only a few months!

Related: Episode 1: How Our Business Started Because of Tinder! 

 
 
 
 
 
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Episode Transcription:

Robbie Turner:
Hi everyone, it’s Robbie and Tamara and Dan, we’re from Axon Property Group and we’re bringing you now our version two of our podcast, Axons Unleashed.

Dan:
I don’t know if it’s version two, I think it’s just episode two.

Robbie Turner:
Okay, we can do that.

Dan:
It is-

Robbie Turner:
How are you, mate? You good?

Dan:
Mate, I’m having a absolute ripper morning here. So, even though it’s a little bit overcast outside it’s bright and sunny inside this room, so that’s great.

Robbie Turner:
Tammy, you good?

Tamara:
It’s always sunny above the clouds.

Robbie Turner:
Oh yes, as a person who used to be a flight attendant for Qantas, that was your little saying wasn’t it?

Tamara:
That’s right.

Robbie Turner:
“It’s always sunny above the clouds.” All right, hey, let’s keep moving because I loved the first session we did, episode, not version, and spoke… we’d basically finished off there about working in your PJs at home, is you need to get out and about at some stage, so.

Dan:
Yeah, I think that it was really Tammy was kind of saying, “You need to get out and about occasionally.” Because she needed you and your optimism out of the house every once in a while.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah, it was good, yeah. Because when you live with, when you work with, when you eat with, when you hang out with and sleep with your wife, all at the same time, it’s a little bit cramped in the house. So yeah, we eventually got to a point we’re like, “If we’re going to have other people come and join us in the business, we can’t have them coming hanging out in our own home as well, and we need to go and get out there and actually have an office set up properly.”

Tamara:
So, we set up in one of our client’s houses, so we kind of moved from a home to a home, but we kind of made it an office, office-like.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah, it was really good. It was a win-win for them, they’d just finished building a big, beautiful two-story home in a Premier Master-Planned Community in one of the Northern Gold Coast suburbs. And I was like, “Hey, we’re looking for a place to operate the business from, upstairs can have all the offices and the open room there, downstairs can have the lounge room and the media and the kitchen and all those other sort of amenities, and a bit of a client meeting.” So, I mean as we all reflect on that office and when we move out of there 18 months or so ago, so we were there for pretty much two years, it served us really, really well I’ve got to say. It was good, we had 240 odd square meters of living space and operating space for 500 bucks a week, compared-

Tamara:
And that was above market rent for them.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah, it was good.

Tamara:
We locked in two years and we said, “We’ll pay you an extra 50 bucks a week.”

Robbie Turner:
Yeah, so it was really, really good to actually have somewhere to get out of the office and go and do what Axon is now starting to evolve into.

Dan:
Yeah. Well, I mean that was because it wasn’t just about you needing your space to be able to get out of there, and to also I suppose create that environment where you put your shirt on or you put your uniform on, you put your Axon uniform on, and go to work in a different location and get out of your socks and jocks, because that wasn’t allowed in the office, you had to wear pants most of the time.

Tamara:
Well, we had to encourage you to wear shoes when you started, so.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah.

Dan:
Well, when you’re on camera all of the time, just keep the camera up nice and high, and then generally no one knows whether you’ve got shoes on or not.

Tamara:
This is true.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah, doesn’t Karl Stefanovic just wear boardies every morning on the Today show? I don’t know.

Tamara:
Well, I’ve seen you do some coaching calls in not much down below either.

Robbie Turner:
It’s all right, I don’t stand up. But yeah, I guess actually Dan it’s a good point you touch on there. It’s one of the very first things we did was create… so nail down the logo, nail down how that sort of looked, and then we went and bought shirts. Having done 24 years in the military myself, and a heap of years for you, putting on that uniform, having that sense of belonging, being part of a team, everyone dressed the same, uniformality, it’s a fucking no-brainer, you get up and put your shirt on. Like even Tammy, you enjoyed it as well didn’t you?

Tamara:
Yeah, I don’t have to think about what I’m wearing.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah, it’s so good.

Tamara:
But also, we went with a polo shirt which is very Gold Coast. There’s not that many suit and ties here either. So, it was very appropriate for where we were too.

Robbie Turner:
I didn’t want to be the suit and tie sort of guy. All the clients that would come into the office and clients who are on Zoom calls, they’re in fucking boardies and T-shirt and just kicking around in flippers sort of thing, so.

Dan:
Yeah. And 50% of the time they’ve either got a wine or a beer in their hand.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah, [crosstalk 00:04:02].

Dan:
They’re just enjoying themselves.

Robbie Turner:
I couldn’t think of us being there in a bloody three-piece suit going, “Hi, we’re veterans, how can we help you bloody buy a property?” No, it just didn’t run that way.

Dan:
Didn’t really resonate from that perspective. So, I suppose at that point in time you’d found the location that you wanted to go to, and you had a bit of a growing team at that point in time. So, you guys were working from home at that point in time, and there was another person working remotely.

Tamara:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Robbie Turner:
Yeah.

Dan:
And then, just to give myself a little intro.

Tamara:
Yeah.

Dan:
I was given the tap on the shoulder.

Robbie Turner:
Enter Dan.

Dan:
Yeah.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah. I mean to be fair, you and I… So, you had bought and built two properties, with me as your property coach back in the day.

Dan:
Yeah.

Robbie Turner:
And then-

Tamara:
And we did get permission to have Dan.

Robbie Turner:
From?

Tamara:
From the old company.

Robbie Turner:
Oh well, that was-

Dan:
Well, that’s an interesting story, so yeah-

Robbie Turner:
I was just about to go into that.

Dan:
Yeah, absolutely. So, I suppose it was probably back in-

Robbie Turner:
Mid-2016.

Dan:
Because as I sort of said last time, we’d known each other for quite a while, but back in 2012 I went on my first deployment. I was coming back to Australia and I’m like, “You know what? I’m going to be like every other person and I’m going to go ahead and I’m going to go buy myself an SS Ute and blow all my deployment monies on a car.” Right? Fortunately Robbie was sitting in the background as the little devil or angel on the shoulder and goes, “Dan, don’t be a dickhead. Go and buy something that’s actually going to turn that deployment money into something worthwhile over the longterm.”

Dan:
So yeah, that point in time I went ahead and bought my first investment property from that perspective. And that was probably about three or four years into my military career at that point in time. Having been a [RANI 00:05:35] officer when I enlisted, spent a bit of time down south in some of the southern units, and then went up to Darwin where I do know that Robbie Turner spent a night or two sleeping on our couch when he used to come and visit. But then yeah, back down to Brisbane and Sydney and bouncing around, and had the great fortune of then being able to be a sub-unit commander on my way up the military. So, there was a few more deployments and stuff like that in amongst it all, which was all good fun as well. And probably the number one thing I miss about the military is the deployments. It was always great to be doing your job in realtime like to 100% capacity.

Tamara:
And everyone comes back super fit.

Robbie Turner:
Yes, yeah. I want to just bring in that point, because I bring this up on coaching sessions really frequently. You know when you go to Shoalwater Bay or White Bay or fucking High Range or Tindal or Delamere or wherever, right? And you go there and you go through the motions, you’re on exercise, no one’s shooting at you, no one’s going to die unless there’s a horrific accident, and you do things at 75, 80, 90%, no dramas, got it, everyone should be nodding their head going, “Yeah, he’s right.” But when you go on operations, Dan, I think what you’re saying, you put in 100%. You never miss a shift. You get up nice and early, you have got your game face on all the time, and shit is real. And the decisions and the actions you take, if they’re not done to that over 100%, bad shit’s going to happen.

Robbie Turner:
Axon’s on operations every day. Like when we’re talking to our clients, this is not a rehearsal, we’re not at Shoalwater Bay, we’re not like, “Ah, maybe if you do this it might turn out for you.” Realtime stuff, operations hat on. We’re flirting with your financial future, so we put all of our effort and all of our experience and all of our intellect into making sure that the planning and coaching and guidance we provide you is absolutely going to give you the best chance of being successful. So, it’s a little-

Tamara:
Hence, why I think I’m in the military now.

Robbie Turner:
That’s right. You are on operations every day because you’re my wife.

Dan:
That is often the case [crosstalk 00:07:29].

Robbie Turner:
[crosstalk 00:07:29] silence then.

Tamara:
No comment.

Dan:
Tammy’s like, “You’re 100% correct. I’m on operations all the time.” And I’m like, “And you’ve got to live with Robbie Turner 100% of the time.” Which-

Robbie Turner:
We do have an episode about that coming up.

Dan:
Yeah, exactly, exactly. So, we’ll get to that shortly. Suppose taking it back then, sort of fast forward 2016. I think I’d just come back from a deployment and I think I’d just started speaking to you while you were umming and ahing about the next transition plans for you from the old firm as well. And we’d met up a couple of times and sort of speaking about what the transition’s going to look like. And for me, I’d already been thinking about transition out of the military probably a couple of years before that. Starting to think, “Okay, what’s next for me?” Because as a logistics officer you get to be a sub-unit commander, and then maybe you get to go to command staff college, and then maybe you do a really hard slog job for a couple of years to potentially get promoted.

Robbie Turner:
That’s called SO1 shit jobs.

Dan:
And then you go to your SO1 shit jobs. And then maybe you get to be the dizzying heights of a CO of a logistics unit. And it just didn’t gel well with me, so I was already thinking about my transition out. And if any of you are out there thinking about transitions at the moment, for me that if you’re thinking about transitions, it’s coming.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah.

Dan:
It is going to happen sooner rather than later.

Robbie Turner:
As the saying goes, “It’s not if you get out, it’s when you get out.”

Dan:
Absolutely.

Robbie Turner:
And all of us will become a veteran one day. So, there’s multiple, multiple episodes coming up ladies and gents where we’re going to talk about ADF transition and we’re going to have heaps of different veterans come in here and tell their stories. So, stand by for that.

Tamara:
Yeah. And hopefully it’s your choice when to leave, but it’s definitely not always the case is it?

Robbie Turner:
Indeed, indeed.

Dan:
Indeed, indeed. So yeah, I was finishing up probably one of my last postings there and I sort of said, “Hey man, it’s time from a transition perspective.” I think we’d been planning on the end of that year would be a really good time. But as we sort of highlighted in episode number one, you got the tap on the shoulder or the boot up the arse to get out the door I should call it.

Robbie Turner:
Of that other firm.

Dan:
Of the other firm. A little bit earlier.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah.

Dan:
So, it sort of accelerated plans from that perspective. And I think when I was down in Adelaide we were speaking very regularly about, “Okay, what’s the next step from here?”

Robbie Turner:
Yeah, and dare I say it was without warning.

Dan:
It was. It was definitely without warning.

Robbie Turner:
Without warning. [inaudible 00:09:37]. So mate, it was great. Just like I got the tap on the shoulder from the other guy to go, “Look, I know you’ve been a successful special forces guy, I know you’ve been successful in property. I’m now growing this property investment company, do you want to help me come and start it up there?” And certainly the first thoughts that I had back then, I was like, “I’m not a…” You think about this, right? Doctors, lawyers, they’re the same. Property spruikers, used car salesmens, they’re the same.

Robbie Turner:
Your dad’s a used car salesman, he’s a fucking champion and I get on really, really well with him. Shout out to you, Craig. And he’s absolutely been running a very, very successful car wholesaling business for many, many, many years. But in my mind I’m like, “I’ve been burnt by other property spruikers, I don’t want to be that guy.” I’d said, “Look, that’s not me, man. I’m just not that guy.” He goes, “Well…” And this is a little mindset thing, a little mindset shift that I had way back when I was still wearing uniform. He goes, “Look, if you just focus on helping people, then you’re not selling anything, you just focus on helping them.”

Robbie Turner:
And even Matt, who now still works at Axon, that was the very first thing I said to him when I gave him a little tap on the shoulder, let’s call it, what, six, seven months ago. I never get that fucking timeframe correct. But anyway, depending on when you’re listening to this it’s irrelevant. I said, “Mate, now’s your time where you can come and join Axon.” He goes, “Oh no, I don’t want to sell anything to anyone.” I said, “Well, you’ve been a client, mate. Do you feel like I sold anything to you and Ash?” He goes, “No, it’s great. You guys helped us out.” I said, “Well, how about you just go do that?”

Robbie Turner:
So, it’s a real mindset shift there. And I know… Tell us about your experience. What were your thoughts about joining the property industry and coming on the other side of the mirror as we say at that point? As you were seriously considering getting out and coming and joining.

Dan:
Yeah. Well, I actually had the opportunity probably about nine months after I transitioned. I went back down to Adelaide for the CO’s dinner at the end of the year. So, I still got invited along to the end-of-year function at the officer’s mess down there. And I had the opportunity to sit down with a few of the boys that I actually worked with down there, and they were avid property investors as well at that point in time, and they were sort of asking me how it was all going and everything like that. And I sort of sat there and said, “You know what? When I was you and I was sitting there as a consumer, as a person who’s in the fight learning how to do this and trying to do it by myself, I thought I knew stuff.” Now I realize I didn’t fucking know anything.

Robbie Turner:
You’d built two houses by then.

Dan:
And I’d already built two houses by then, and I still felt like after spending nine months of actually operating in the industry that I was starting to get to understand it and starting to get to know it, so.

Tamara:
It’s kind of like what Robbie was saying before about when he thought starting the business, “Yeah, we’ll be fine, I’ve got this. We’ve done… I’ve worked in another company, I’ve got this.” And then-

Dan:
“How hard can it be?”

Tamara:
Yeah.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah. “How hard can it be?”

Tamara:
And then you’re like, “I know nothing.”

Robbie Turner:
It’s the biggest bit of feedback we get from the other guys that have started recently. They’re like, “We had no idea.” And these are guys that have all been clients of Axon that have now got the privilege of wearing Axon shirt, and they love working here and we’re very grateful to have them. They’re like, “We had no idea that there was these conversations and the diligence and the thought processes and the analysis that went into every conversation.” Because then obviously you get to pass it onto your clients when you and I are coaching them.

Tamara:
Especially if you’re the man going through research reports and things like that now, and they were like, “Wow, there is so much that Axon actually goes into, so much detail, so much analysis.” So much research that goes into all the decisions that we help our clients with.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah, even James, he was an ex-Int Analyst, did six months of research, almost went and worked with old mate that I used to work for, and then sort of come… And then when he started going through the process he’s like, “I’ve been doing all this research and I have not found any of this stuff that you guys are providing me.” So, I’m like, “Well, that’s because you’re doing surface-level research, not that… You don’t work in the industry, you don’t do it full-time.”

Dan:
Yeah, when you’re doing one-hour research on Realestate.com after hours, that’s not real research.

Robbie Turner:
No.

Dan:
So, in episode number one you sort of spoke about the fact you’d pushed all the chips in, and then in some months it was a little bit touch and go, from using Tammy’s airline expression there as well. Why did you then need to start thinking about expanding? And how did my role or me coming into Axon actually fit together?

Robbie Turner:
It was a bit of a spin off from the other property coaching… sorry, business coaching firm that we used to go down to Sydney with where the Tinder story originated from. I guess we just realized in the name of scale, in the name of growth, because we quickly realized, Tam would you agree, that we were doing everything. So, we did our little org chart sort of thing.

Tamara:
Mm.

Dan:
That said, “Robbie and Tammy.” And that was the org card?

Robbie Turner:
Yeah. So, Robbie doing this, this, this, this, Tammy doing this, this, this, this and this, and then everything else.

Tamara:
Yeah, there was plenty of roles there, it’s just that our names were in every seat.

Robbie Turner:
And of course when you’re trying to do every… We just had no scale, we had no life. And it was fine that I was kicking around in my bloody PJs the whole time, but yeah, we just needed to… The more and more people we helped, the more and more of a thrill I got out of it, and I’m like, “Let’s go fucking do that again. But I’m working 80 hours a week and I can’t keep doing all this myself.”

Robbie Turner:
So yeah, we had another lady Sharon working with us, which was really cool. And she provided a fantastic build support experience for our clients from afar, but certainly… And that’s fine, that sort of took part of its… that took care of itself I should say. But in the front end of the business where I needed more help to coach and do the process and the risk and the research and find the property and do the contracts et cetera, et cetera, that was very… as we started to get a little bit of momentum there, that was very much draining and consuming me. So we’re like, “We need to be able to go and find another Robbie.” And yeah, enter Dan, so it was great.

Dan:
There is no other Robbie.

Tamara:
I was going to say, that is not… “Let’s go find another Robbie, here comes Dan.” That is not the case.

Robbie Turner:
I think you’ve morphed into a fantastic replica of me whilst we’re at work.

Dan:
Ladies and gents, just to be very, very clear, there is no such thing as two Robbie Turners, and the world would not be able to handle two Robbie Turners.

Tamara:
Thank the Lord.

Robbie Turner:
That is true, that is true.

Dan:
So, that’s-

Robbie Turner:
There is thousands of people that could put their hand up in a good, bad, and ugly way to affirm that being the case.

Dan:
So, that’s good. And then probably, I think things started getting really serious about sort of June or July of 2017 where we were starting to talk about, “Okay, what’s actual start dates?” And in my mind I was like, “Hey, Tammy”-

Tamara:
1st August I think.

Dan:
1st September it was.

Robbie Turner:
[crosstalk 00:15:55].

Tamara:
September, yeah.

Dan:
It was 1st September, and the reason I know that is because I knew that that would allow me to drag my leave out until the start of the next year, and then start my long service leave at that point in time. But conversely on the other side, I knew that I had a fishing trip planned for July, so I was like, “I need to stay in the military while I’m doing this fishing trip away. And then eventually, after I’ve done the fishing trip, then I can…”

Tamara:
I know you now that these fishing trips get planned well in advance. I think they’re already in the calendar for this year.

Robbie Turner:
There’s two in there for this year isn’t there?

Tamara:
Yeah.

Robbie Turner:
And we’re only in February.

Dan:
I don’t know if there’s two, but there’s definitely one in there that was booked maybe… actually, I know exactly when it was booked. So, this is for June this year I’m going fishing again for another week. It was actually booked one week after Margaret was born, so Margaret’s my daughter, she’s now at the moment she’s eight months old, so it was booked eight months ago. And it’s funny because I was actually speaking to Anne and I’m like… I had to tiptoe around this. I was like, “So, if I want to be part of this fishing trip I have to put my name down now, and it’s non-refundable so we kind of have to commit or not commit. It might be the last time dad can do.” And this is all while we’ve-

Tamara:
You’re pulling out all the stops.

Dan:
Ah, it’s a fishing trip for a week.

Robbie Turner:
Hi, Anne, when you’re listening to this.

Tamara:
Is that why you’re just saying there’s only one in there? Is the other one not Anne-approved yet?

Dan:
No, Anne signs off on the fishing trip because she likes to eat the fish, so that’s all good. But yeah, so when Margaret was being born… that was a very, very, very big segue there. But when Margaret was being born eventually I somehow convinced my lovely wife to allow me to go fishing for a week, which is a minor miracle in itself.

Robbie Turner:
So, before your fishing trip though I thought it would be a good idea.

Dan:
[crosstalk 00:17:31].

Robbie Turner:
Because when I worked with the other firm as I was sort of transitioning as well, I was like, “Look, before you make a decision about whether you’re going to join, come up and do a week’s behind the scenes training. Come and have a look what happens on the other side of the mirror. Having been in property for many years yourself, Robbie, I want to show you what actually goes on.”

Robbie Turner:
So, I worked out how to talk to the builders, how to talk to the developers, how to talk to the solicitors, how to talk to the mortgage brokers et cetera. I literally had a bit of a mic drop moment like you as well, mate. I though I knew a fair bit about property. I know fuck all about the property industry as a professional, as opposed to a sort of consumer there. And I was hooked straightaway. Went back down, put my discharge in, fast forward a couple of months, bang, I’m out. So, that one week’s behind the scenes training I did, I went, “Let’s just replicate that for you.”

Dan:
Yeah.

Robbie Turner:
So, you came up to our office, our home, our home office.

Dan:
Which at that point in time I did actually attend the media room office at that point in time for an entire week.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah. So, we did a heap of whiteboard session and I just… I’ve still got Dan’s training program on my Google Drive there about what it looked like, and it’s certainly evolved a lot since we’ve had the other guys come in. And yeah, so we did basically a whole week’s worth of behind the scenes training. I mean, how did you find that? Few years ago now, you probably won’t remember, hey?

Dan:
Yeah, I’m just like… Well actually, the biggest thing that I remember is, and it’s kind of where the name for the podcast actually comes from, I just remember that later in the week you were like, “Dan, now that you’re not in the military you don’t have to worry about having to go back to work after lunch, you’re now allowed to have a beer and you’re allowed to have a lovely time.” And I just remember that late in the week we ended up going for a lovely lunch, which sort of dragged out into a lovely afternoon of drinks, which rolled into a nice nother dinner with more drinks. And we may or may not have ended up back at your place with another bottle of scotch as well.

Robbie Turner:
Fucking carted.

Tamara:
Oh, God.

Dan:
It was the famous limoncello incident that day.

Robbie Turner:
Oh, was that when you got to meet Joel as well at that?

Dan:
Exactly, [crosstalk 00:19:20]

Robbie Turner:
Yeah, that fantastic, we had an awesome lunch up at Sanctuary Cove.

Tamara:
Yes.

Robbie Turner:
Yes, yes, yes.

Dan:
And that’s pretty much my main memory from that. Yes, I obviously learned a lot of stuff and I figured out there’s a lot more behind the curtain and that type of thing. But my lasting memory is the fact that I now no longer have to be treated like, respectfully, a child in the military where I can’t be trusted to not do the right thing. I can now become an adult out in the real-world and go, “Hey, if I do this it has implications and I need to be able to work within those.”

Robbie Turner:
So, everyone listening to this from a veteran and current Defense community perspective, [inaudible 00:19:53] tested objectives. So, we woke up hungover as shit on the Friday morning. And I was just getting through my first coffee and I said, “All right, bro? Before you hop on the plane let’s just confirm everything that we’ve gone through this week. There’s a blank whiteboard, show me the business model.”

Dan:
From scratch. Blank whiteboard. And I was like-

Robbie Turner:
I was like, “What do you mean?” “Well, I’ve taken you through it a few times, we’ve now got 20, 30 bullet points underneath each of the particular items. I just want to keep it surface-level, what are all the elements of the business from [inaudible 00:20:24]? What does the client and customer journey look like?” And away he went.

Dan:
Yeah. Just drawing a whole load of boxes up on the board and I went, “What happens next?” And then this-

Robbie Turner:
This is after a week.

Dan:
Just one week.

Robbie Turner:
So just for context, we still do this activity with our property specialists as a bit of a test of objectives after like three months.

Dan:
Yes.

Robbie Turner:
You did it after a week.

Dan:
So, I did it after a week, and whilst nursing probably top 10 of all hangovers that I’ve had in my life.

Robbie Turner:
Correct. And I was nursing a top 10 hangover just watching you do it.

Dan:
So, laid it out on the whiteboard there, and we eventually went through it and I was like, “I think I’m done.” And Robbie dragged himself up off the couch and was like, “I’ve finished my first coffee now and breakfast is cooking on the stove.” We had a lovely breakfast that morning as well.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah, Tammy was doing it. Yeah, yeah.

Dan:
Thanks Tammy.

Robbie Turner:
It did.

Dan:
And then he came up and he sort of went through the whiteboard, and there was a few gaps in there admittedly because I’d been doing it for about a week and I was extremely hungover. And we sort of sat down and-

Robbie Turner:
I said, “How do you think you went?”

Dan:
I don’t even know. I think I said, “I went pretty good.” [crosstalk 00:21:25].

Robbie Turner:
[crosstalk 00:21:25]. I said, “Tell you what, I’ll give you six out of 10.”

Dan:
Six? No, six and a half.

Robbie Turner:
Six and a half out of 10.

Dan:
Don’t take-

Robbie Turner:
If I’d taken a half off. So, six and a half out of 10, so I’m like, “That’s actually now the minimum standard in our business.” So, first of all it was me pulling the piss, he did a way, way better job than that. It was at least seven and a quarter or so. But that’s actually resonated now into part of our fabric that as soon as someone does a really good job or something, “Six out of 10.”

Tamara:
Yeah.

Dan:
That’s it. And I think I quickly responded with, “That’s all right, I only needed 50% to get out of uni.”

Robbie Turner:
Correct.

Dan:
So, tick that box and here we are, right?

Robbie Turner:
You already had a couple of master’s under your belt by then, so it’s good enough, yeah.

Dan:
Yeah, I’d been doing it. And I think Tammy when we actually came downstairs after that and you sort of said, “Ah, how did Dan go? How’s everything going?” And Robbie goes, “Ah, he got about six and a half out of 10.” You lost it.

Tamara:
I was so shocked.

Robbie Turner:
You were fucking… you were horrified. You were like, “What? You cannot say that.” You pulled me aside and fucking gave me a dressing down. She’s like, “You fucking get in there and apologize to him, he just fucking spent a whole week with you and you just gave him six out of 10. This is fucking not how we want to run our business.” And I’m trying to impersonate you there, Tam, but hopefully that-

Tamara:
That was a great impersonation.

Dan:
When you’re watching the video of this just watch Robbie’s face as he actually takes you through that one, it was absolutely brilliant. But as you said, it sort of resonated into the business. But it also, Tammy, allowed you your first little piece of Robbie feedback in front of or right beside employees as well. And obviously that’s another trait that occasionally gets resonated throughout the business when Robbie does his Robbie things and we continue on our way.

Robbie Turner:
So, that was all good. So, that was a pass, more than five out of 10, and then effectively you went back and did the final bit of your discharge et cetera. So, speaking of fishing trips, I had since been invited to go on a fishing trip up to a place called Haggerstone Island which is right up-

Dan:
Beautiful part of the country.

Robbie Turner:
Right up near Thursday Island. Like fucking halfway to PNG quite frankly.

Tamara:
[crosstalk 00:23:23].

Robbie Turner:
Right up there.

Dan:
Like helicopter in, that type of stuff. Or in or out. Plane ride in.

Robbie Turner:
Plane ride. So, it was an hour and a half on a plane north of Cairns, so.

Dan:
Middle of nowhere.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah. Admittedly it was like a 20-seater bug smasher so we weren’t like in a jet for an hour and a half, halfway to Singapore. But anyway, fast forward three or four days up there, and it was a no shit, very boozy, very all-expenses-paid for amazing bit of fishing and everything we did up there. And it was my turn to basically jump off the back of the boat and go and grab the little buoy to get us all moored up there. And the water radar said it was about a meter and a half worth of water, it’s almost like a hold my hat, hold my beer moment, and the water was moving so fast up there, hence the reason that we needed to moor straightaway. And I jumped in to grab the rope and it wasn’t… and I did like a height reducing jump, wasn’t like a meter and a half of water, it was more like 20 centimeters of water. And I jumped in and fucking snapped my left leg.

Dan:
So, you’re braced for like a one and a half meter plop into some water, and-

Robbie Turner:
20 centimeters. So, I was like complete snap of my tib, my fib, my talus in my ankle, like everything. And I was like, “Ah, I’ve hurt my ankle.” They’re like, “Ah, get out of the water you fucking weak bastard. Blah, blah, blah.” I’m like, “No, no, no. I’ve really, really hurt myself.” They’re like, “No, you’ll be all right.” And I looked up there, and excuse the squeamish vision here, I looked down and my whole left foot was literally dangling off the end of my fucking leg, and I was like, “I have hurt myself really bad here.”

Robbie Turner:
Thankfully that afternoon a Robinson 44 helicopter had just arrived, because were going to be hanging out the side of the helicopter shooting sharks and shooting pigs and all that fucking cool stuff that I’m like, “Right, I’m not a very good fisherman but I know how to shoot shit from a helicopter.” So, I was like, “Great, I’m going to be able to show these guys how to do stuff.” Because we were fucking miles away from anywhere, luckily that helicopter was on there. So, basically Sargent Turner kicked back into gear again and went, “Right. Ah mate, start that fucking helicopter. Go get me some…”

Robbie Turner:
So, they had Panadol painkillers on the fucking island, I am screaming my fucking leg is really, really sore. Literally they bloody put me, there’s still a vision, they put me into this bloody helicopter, put my little bag underneath my leg there, and then we had an hour and 15 minutes in a Robinson 44 which is fucking one of the smallest helicopters that you can get. An hour and 15 minutes directly up there Thursday Island Hospital. I went through some levels of pain and had to really, really dig deep into fucking why I just didn’t want to crawl up and die how much my leg was hurting.

Tamara:
I remember getting that phone call, and you’d been out of phone reception at the time, and so when it rang I was like, “What’s happened?”

Robbie Turner:
Yeah. And by then they’d given me a fuck load of drugs by the time, like fentanyl and morphine and all that sort of stuff. And I was like, “Hey, babe.” She’s like, “Hey, what’s up? You’ve been out of comms a few days.” I’m like, “I’m in the Thursday Island Hospital.” You’re like… Well yeah, you tell the story quick because I was…

Tamara:
I was like, “What?”

Dan:
Yeah, what was happening at your end, Tammy?

Robbie Turner:
Yeah.

Tamara:
So, the day before this accident I actually had just got a new puppy. That was the day we got Hank the tank, our little now-

Dan:
That’s actually Robbie Turner Junior.

Tamara:
Yeah, it’s a three-kilo Pomeranian, it’s hilarious.

Robbie Turner:
There’s not another human like me, but there’s my little puppy.

Tamara:
Anyway. So, I get this call that Robbie’s in the hospital. I also found out from the nurses that at the time you were on such a huge amount of painkillers that you’d been looking through your backpack trying to find the bug repellent when there was no bugs in the hospital room. He was absolutely tripping out.

Robbie Turner:
There was bugs in my mind. I was fucking tripping out hard.

Tamara:
But anyway, then we were waiting, I was onto the insurance company. Thankfully just before Robbie went I paid $58 for insurance. I had to shop around for it too, because for some reason I thought, “Oh my God, he’s going to get bitten by a crocodile or something up there.”

Robbie Turner:
Because all the boys that had been on the trip before were telling these horror stories. And actually, Trent, quick shout out to you. So, we got off the phone he goes, “Yeah, you all right for tomorrow?” “Yeah, mate, no worries.” He called me back 10 minutes later, I’m like, “What’s this fucking buffoon calling me for?” I said, “Mate, what’s up?” He goes, “Just had a quick chat to the missus. So look, no one’s ever hurt themselves up there, but I don’t know, we all think it’s a good idea we just get some sort of insurance before we go.” I’m like, “Yeah, cool man, no worries.” Obviously over to Tammy.

Tamara:
So yeah, shopping around for Australian insurance including medical evacuation for some reason, thinking if he needs to get out of there. And I don’t know how I made the call to get that particular insurance but thank God. Because then when I got that phone call I started having to organize evacuations from Thursday Island train to get you back to Cairns to get this operated on.

Robbie Turner:
So, I spent two days… So, they had to give me a heap of ketamine and then do a… put me… basically do a bit of a readjustment of my leg because my whole left foot was still hanging off my fucking underneath my knee. So, had to put that back into alignment, put a hard cast sort of underneath it there. The Thursday Island Hospital up there is fantastic, it’s a really, really new facility and there’s lots of awesome doctors and medical people up there. But the local inhabitants of that region get priority for all AME. So, I was like on the bus, off the bus, on the bus, off the bus, for like two nights trying to get the fuck out of there so they could then fly me back to another island which then I can then be fix-winged back to Cairns.

Tamara:
Yeah. Horn Island.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah, Horn Island, yeah.

Tamara:
And then back Cairns.

Robbie Turner:
On the bloody Royal Flying Doctor Service. So yeah, it was a fucking horrendous time of my life. And eventually we got back to Cairns and then they did the bloody X-rays and that’s where the doctor’s like… The orthopedic surgeon came in, he goes, “Hey, just want to let you know, this is a significant injury.”

Tamara:
And because of that delay-

Robbie Turner:
“This is a life-changing injury.”

Tamara:
Because of that delay they couldn’t even operate at that time. The swelling was that bad that they were basically… I don’t even want to use the term, but they wouldn’t be able to put you back together.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah. I was just, “Look, why can’t you just operate? It’s there, you can see it’s broken, just fucking put it back together.” And he’s like, “Mate, you can see with your leg at the moment.” He goes, “If we cut this open it’s going to be like putting a dagger through a bloody Sherrin football, it’s just going to burst open.” I’m like, “Yeah, well don’t do that then.”

Tamara:
So, you got metal fixators put in-

Robbie Turner:
External fixators. So, they had to basically put a… apologies again for the squeamish nature, I did say in episode one this is MA 15+. They had to go, yeah, basically drill into my leg and drill into my foot, and I had these big fucking A-frame hanging off the left part of my leg. To the point whereby when eventually we did get our Virgin flight home, they put us in business class, but I was in-

Tamara:
Only because you wouldn’t fit in economy.

Robbie Turner:
I was in a wheelchair of course, and my leg was that horrific with this fucking metal A-frame, aluminum A-frame hanging out of my leg, Tammy had to put a towel…

Tamara:
A pillowcase.

Robbie Turner:
A pillowcase over my leg so I was walking through the bloody airport and didn’t scare everyone away. It was fucking horrific.

Dan:
So, that’s-

Tamara:
You hadn’t realized how horrific it was until some people, I think even the flight attendant said, “Can I have a look?” And we pulled it down and her face was like, “Ugh.”

Robbie Turner:
Oh, yeah.

Tamara:
And you started realizing, “Okay, this is pretty horrific for people to look at.”

Robbie Turner:
So, this is July 2017, just to recap. March 2017, had the falling out with old mate, no notice, start doing the whiteboard stuff, start Axon mid-March, started to get a little bit of traction there and doing all my first sort of videos. Had the chat with Dan, Dan’s about to start. So actually, when you came up to visit us doing the on-the-job training, I said, “Mate, by the way we’ve got this new office, we’re going to move in, everything’s going to be set up for you, you’re going to have your own computer, all the desks will be there. It’s going to be mint, mate. You’re going to walk straight in.”

Dan:
“It’s going to be amazing.” That’s what you told me. “It’s going to be absolutely amazing.”

Robbie Turner:
Then that… And this is actually going to be the title of this episode. You received that message from Tammy.

Dan:
Yeah. Well, the reason the fishing trip sort of come about is I was actually getting off the plane, it must have been a Friday morning because the charter leaves on Friday morning in Gladstone. So, I jumped off the plane and I had a message from Tammy, and it’s like, “You need to call me urgently.” And I’m like, “All right, I’ll ring Tammy.” Tammy’s like, “So, I just need to let you know Robbie went on a fishing trip, and he’s snapped his leg, and he’s not in a very good way.” I was like, “Ah, that’s interesting Tammy. Well, I’m going on a fishing charter for a week, so I’ll see you when I get back.” I don’t know how that made you feel that you’re like, “I’ve lost one already, and then the next one’s going to do exactly the same thing.”

Tamara:
I just had no idea about… And you know me, I’m very planning and everything needs to be structured. And so suddenly I was like, “What is going on?” I suddenly have to run a business and set up this new office and get you started by myself.

Dan:
Well, I remember then obviously I went on… I didn’t break my leg on the fishing trip, which is obviously a-

Tamara:
Thank God.

Robbie Turner:
Thankfully.

Dan:
Thank goodness. But eventually, yeah, I left the military, I think my last day in uniform from a full-time perspective was around about the 28th August to be able to be starting on the 1st September. And I remember turning back up, and I hadn’t seen Robbie in between those times, and I roll back up at your house and I was like, “Okay, what’s going on here?” And that was my first time that I turned up at the house, and previously it had been downstairs in the media room.

Robbie Turner:
This is the new house.

Dan:
Yeah, yeah, this is the new-

Robbie Turner:
The new office, yeah.

Dan:
No, no, we turned up back to your house first.

Robbie Turner:
Right.

Dan:
Because mate, you weren’t going anywhere at this point in time.

Tamara:
No.

Robbie Turner:
True.

Dan:
But you were still trying to soldier on, and you’d now moved the whiteboard that Tammy bought off Gumtree, that had been moved out into the main living area now. And there was a desk there that we were going to work out of from the operation perspective. But the reason it actually all had to move out of the media room is you couldn’t get upstairs anymore because of your leg.

Robbie Turner:
No.

Tamara:
[inaudible 00:33:20].

Dan:
So, you got your external fixators, you’re in the wheelchair, and you had to move one of the bedrooms downstairs into that media room in order for you to be able to survive.

Tamara:
And mind you, at the time we’d also gone to a couple of surgeons. And I don’t even think you heard them saying it, but they were like, “You might actually lose your leg here.”

Robbie Turner:
Yeah, the prognosis was not good.

Tamara:
This is like a crush injury. They were looking at the X-rays and it was shattered.

Robbie Turner:
He’s like, “This is like… Did you skydive?”

Tamara:
Skydive, yeah.

Robbie Turner:
“Did you free fall out of a plane and you didn’t…”

Dan:
[crosstalk 00:33:52].

Robbie Turner:
I’m like, “No, man.” I said, “No, I was only like two meters above.” He’s like, “Fuck, how did you smash this so bad?”

Dan:
Tammy, how was it, obviously I had to come to work and I saw him occasionally, but we’ve already highlighted the fact that when you are co-founders of a business you’re there together 24 hours. He’s not leaving the house at this point in time. What was some of the impacts on you being there with a, let’s not call him what he was at that point in time, but I mean you obviously weren’t functioning at 100%, and you probably weren’t six out of 10 either.

Tamara:
Well, he wasn’t sleep-

Robbie Turner:
No.

Tamara:
Not even. God.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah. This is going to be hard to talk about actually.

Tamara:
Well, he was on some pretty heavy painkillers, and also screaming out in the middle of the night kind of stuff. And I had a puppy that was not toilet trained and not sleeping through the night. And I was trying to run a business. So, I was just… Yeah, it was crazy. I had to get the bed moved, spare bed moved downstairs into that media room which had a little bathroom off to the side.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah.

Tamara:
And the first time we finally got him into a shower, like finally get him, yeah, the garbage bag taped over the leg, and we’ve got a wheelchair kind of chair in the shower. We get him in there, finally turn on the water, and there was no hot water.

Robbie Turner:
We hadn’t used that downstairs.

Dan:
This is the middle of winter.

Robbie Turner:
We hadn’t used that downstairs bedroom. So, this is like, yeah, August, July or August. Because here’s the thing, they weren’t operating on my leg until late November, they needed all that time, they needed it to settle, they needed the swelling to go down. So, I’m like fucking three months in this wheelchair waiting for this time to go by. And I don’t know where… I’m sure many, many of you listening right now have been in large amounts of pain before.

Robbie Turner:
Living life in pain and enduring pain is fucking horrendous. It’s not good. I have no… there’s no wonder why so many people just go onto the opioids and just make the pain go away as much as they possibly can. And yeah, certainly I was fucking popping pills like they were going out of fashion because I know I was a C-U-next-Tuesday to be around and to live with. And yeah, when this bloody water started coming down on top of me I felt like I was doing some more resistance to interrogation. I was in so much pain, I hadn’t fucking showered for days, my leg was fucking killing me, I didn’t have any hot water, and then I’m screaming at Tamara.

Tamara:
You’re yelling at me.

Robbie Turner:
She’s yelling at me, I’m yelling at her. We both start fucking balling our eyes out and like, “What the fuck?” It was horrendous. It was not very nice at all.

Tamara:
I’m glad we can laugh about this now. We’ve made it through. We’ve made it through.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah. So, to all you guys out there, guys and girls that have suffered some sort of serious injury, I fully understand what you guys went through, so. But yeah, but that was the hard part about it. Everything just came to a bloody screaming halt. And then the operation occurred, and then fast forward six weeks later I was like… maybe not even that, maybe a month later I’m like, “Yeah, this wound’s not really healing as well as it could.” But I’m like, “Ah, it’ll be all right.” I was able to change my own dressings and everything by then. Then I showed Tam on a Sunday afternoon, I’m like, “Yeah, this wound, it’s got a little bit of blood coming out of it.” She’s like, “Blood coming out of it? That was six weeks ago, the operation, that shouldn’t have blood coming out of it.” She then looks at it and it’s got a massive infection. Like my fucking whole big seven-inch bloody scar down there has got a… She’s like, “We need to go to the fucking doctor right now.” So yeah, went down there in the emergency rush back in the hospital. And then I was-

Tamara:
For the footy grand final.

Robbie Turner:
So, this is in… Yeah. So yeah, it was bloody not too good. So, they had to basically pump me back into hospital. I was literally getting a mil of antibiotics pumped into my body every three hours, so just to try and stop the staph infection.

Dan:
So to backpedal, originally they were talking… A lot of the surgeons you went to upfront were like, “We can’t touch this thing. It’s such a horrific crush injury that you’re potentially just going to lose the bottom half of your leg.”

Tamara:
But then we found someone. So, we had to drive around a fair bit and go to a few different specialists, but we did find one in Brisbane. Really straight to the point kind of doctor, and he said, “I can see why people don’t want to do this because it’s going to be hard work. And this is basically putting Humpty Dumpty back together again.”

Robbie Turner:
Yeah.

Tamara:
But yeah, got there.

Robbie Turner:
Thankfully, yeah.

Tamara:
Got it done, yeah.

Robbie Turner:
He’s like, “Yeah, you have fucked this up bad.” He’s like 65, very comfortable in his own skin, just doing it because he loves doing it. And yeah, I’m very, very grateful that guy, that he put Humpty back together again.

Dan:
Yeah. Very frank and forthright?

Robbie Turner:
Yes.

Dan:
Yeah. But then you-

Tamara:
All the reviews on him when I looked him up were like, “No bedside manner.” But that kind of suits Robbie anyway.

Robbie Turner:
I was like, “Good, don’t give me fluff, mate. Just tell me how it is.”

Dan:
Exactly right. So then you obviously didn’t follow doctor’s orders and didn’t look after your wound, and then you ended up with an infection. And that was, yeah, in the lead-up to the AFL Grand Final that year where you sort of found yourself in the Brisbane Private Hospital was it up there?

Robbie Turner:
Yeah. Yeah, that’s right.

Dan:
I don’t know if you remember it, you were pretty spaced out. And so, for context ladies and gents, we had moved into the original office space. So, in my three or four months at Axon at this point in time we’d worked at Robbie and Tamara’s place for a small period of time, then we moved into the office for a small period of time.

Tamara:
Well yeah, I’d already signed the lease before all this, so we were moving. We were moving.

Dan:
Yeah. And then after that, my next place of parade was actually in the Brisbane Private Hospital bed.

Robbie Turner:
That’s right.

Dan:
Because I needed to turn up because Robbie wouldn’t put his phone down, or his computer down, and stop emailing clients while he was absolutely off his cracker on drugs.

Tamara:
Yeah, we had to ban him from emailing people because we were like, “It does not make sense, mate. Stop.”

Robbie Turner:
Well, it’s just one of those things. I’m like, “We’re all in here. I couldn’t ring the boss and go, ‘Hey bro, I need fucking six weeks sick leave. Are you going to pay me?'”

Tamara:
I wouldn’t have given it to you.

Robbie Turner:
But yeah, it’s a real lesson of resilience and grit there. I’m like, “We’ve got no choice. We have crossed over that bloody bridge, we’re all-in here, we can’t just have everything fucking come to a grinding halt.” Because we would have fallen over. Like literally.

Tamara:
So basically, instead of having the office all set up for you, Dan. We said, “Welcome, please set up the desk. Please set up the chairs.”

Robbie Turner:
“And get me a coffee. And mow the lawn. And sweep the floor.” And talking about-

Tamara:
What a bloody legend.

Robbie Turner:
Someone who got out as a second or third year major in the army, then went back to being fucking recruit Dan. And mate, the commitment and the resilience and just the humility you’ve shown over all those many, many, many months to just get that done, it’s going to be hard for us to bloody repay that to you mate. So yeah, on the record here on a podcast we really, really appreciate what you did. Without you we would not be sitting here, I can guarantee that.

Dan:
We’ll find a way for you to repay me, mate. We’ll figure that out, don’t you worry about that.

Robbie Turner:
It seems like-

Dan:
But no, we did have quite a good lawn at that place, I mean we maintained that place quite nicely.

Tamara:
You just love Bunnings. You just love [inaudible 00:40:43].

Dan:
Go on. Tell the story about Bunnings, mate.

Robbie Turner:
Which one?

Dan:
Oh. So, in that place we actually needed to go and get a barbecue one day.

Robbie Turner:
Oh yes, the barbecue story.

Dan:
Yeah. So, we were like, “No worries, we’ll just nip down to Bunnings and we’ll actually get it.” And there’s a Bunnings around the corner. And we walk through the door and Robbie’s displayed his aptitude for all things outdoor-related or putting together-related.

Robbie Turner:
Which is zero.

Dan:
Exactly. So, we walked into Bunnings and he’s like, “All right, this is huge. Where do we go?” I’m like, “Well, you turn right here and you go right down to where the gardening area is and you go straight ahead and then you’ll find the barbecues.”

Tamara:
I would know this.

Dan:
He’s like, “How do you know this? Have you been here before?” I’m like, “No mate, every Bunnings pretty much is laid out exactly the same. Barbecues are in the same area every single time. You go to the same place and you get the same item.”

Robbie Turner:
I didn’t know that.

Dan:
But that’s Robbie for you. He’s great at some things and not very good at other things as well. But is-

Tamara:
I do all the flat packs in our house, and all of the repairs. And you do what you do.

Robbie Turner:
Yeah, that’s a good. So, there you go, that sort of brings us to the end of episode two. Yeah mate, it was the best thing that Axon has ever done, is reach out to you and have you come and join us. And you’ve turned into an absolute superstar expert coach in your own right. Love having you here on the podcast with us. And I guess as we transition into next week’s [inaudible 00:42:00]. All right, cool, Axon’s now starting to kick a few goals, there’s a very, very significant event that occurred which was all my fault, which almost made it unravel all again.

Dan:
To be honest, I’m really looking to explore this bit. Because when we started putting together the idea of the podcast and Tammy’s like, “This is going to be the title of episode three.” I’m like, “Hang on a minute. That’s not necessarily how I remember it happening.” So, I’m going to sit here and I’m actually going to really enjoy as we unpack those decisions that were made and the discussions that occurred behind closed doors from that perspective, just to gain both of your positions to see where that came from.

Tamara:
Are you going to say what the title is?

Dan:
No, no.

Robbie Turner:
[crosstalk 00:42:41].

Tamara:
Keep it a secret. A secret, right.

Dan:
But you know what? When it’s been out there for a little while you’d be able to scroll through and you’d be like, “Episode three. This is the best one there is.”

Robbie Turner:
Yeah, yeah. I royally fucked up and nearly made it all come crashing down again. All right, thanks for listening, catch up with you guys soon.

Dan:
[crosstalk 00:42:54].

Robbie Turner:
Thanks Dan, thanks Tammy.

Tamara:
Bye.

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