Onward Nation

America's best podcast for learning how today's top business owners Think, Act, & Achieve. Onward Nation is a five-day-a-week podcast hosted by Stephen Woessner, CEO of Predictive ROI. Business owners share the most influential lessons learned throughout their careers, including insights into their daily habits, their most vital priorities that have contributed to their business and personal success, and the most challenging time or situation that could have devastated or even ruined their businesses or careers. Business owners share their "recipes for success" including those systems they wish they had put into practice inside their business when first starting out. Each episode concludes with guests sharing two or three practical and tactical strategies they would recommend to brand new business owners in order to best ensure success in their new business and careers. Onward Nation provides business owners with the strategies and tactical step-by-step "recipe" that will help anyone make their business more systematic, predictable, measurable, and repeatable.
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Now displaying: February, 2019
Feb 27, 2019

Steve Gordon is the author of Unstoppable Referrals: 10x Referrals, Half the Effort, and his latest book, The Exponential Network Strategy. He’s the host of The Unstoppable CEO Podcast and has written over 400 articles on marketing for service businesses. Through his firm, he helps service business entrepreneurs create leveraged marketing systems so they can spend less time on business development, and more time on what matters most.

At age 28, Steve Gordon became the CEO of an engineering/consulting firm. It was baptism by fire… Steve knew nothing about marketing or selling services. His firm got all its business by word of mouth, and they enjoyed a healthy, growing business. But they never knew where the next client was coming from, or when he/she would arrive. Steve spent countless nights staring at the ceiling at 2 am, worried about when the next client might come. So he began studying sales and marketing.

Twelve years later, after growing that firm’s revenue by 10-times, Steve started his second business, consulting with businesses across 30 industries—including manufacturing, professional services, construction, and consulting—to design sales, marketing, and referral systems for high-ticket/high-trust products and services. Today he continues sharing his expertise with clients across the world, opening their eyes to their unique growth opportunities and helping them build the right systems to attract their ideal clients.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • How Steve started out as an engineer and made CEO in four years, and how that experience taught him to run a service business
  • How Steve has shifted his focus to helping service-based business owners, and why he chose the word “unstoppable”
  • Why Steve believes that persistence is the most important factor in finding your success in a service-based business
  • What important lessons can be taken from Steve’s latest book, “The Exponential Network Strategy”
  • What networking opportunities can be found in participating in podcasts and sitting down with other business leaders
  • How reciprocal networking works, and how it can be mutually beneficial for adding value to your audiences
  • How to leverage a podcast or a mailing list to effectively promote yourself to all of your contacts
  • Why LinkedIn is an excellent tool for networking, but only if you utilize it correctly
  • Why it is critical to building a solid team with the skills that can support your efforts
  • Why it is so important to be intentional in your business and to keep your priorities in order

Additional resources:

Feb 25, 2019

Greggory R. Garrett is the CEO and Managing Director of CGS Advisors, a boutique strategy and innovation advisory firm. As such he pushes the limits of corporate cultures by developing and implementing unique strategies that capitalize on technology-oriented disruptions to industries and markets. In 2017 he founded and chairs Connected Detroit Innovates, a membership-based business renewal accelerator made up of Chief Innovation Officers.

Gregg has received numerous professional and civic accolades. He is a member of Oakland County’s 2015 40 under 40, a recipient of Oakland University’s Distinguished Alumni Service Award, a Rotary International Paul Harris Fellow, amongst others.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • Why starting his first company at age 16 set Gregg on the path to lifelong entrepreneurship
  • Why Gregg chose to leave his previous employer and create CGS Advisors, and what work CGS does for their clients
  • Why Gregg titled his book “Competing in the Connecting World: The Future of Your Industry is Already Here”
  • How the idea for Gregg’s book came about, and why the writing of the book happened organically as his ideas spread
  • Which important lessons Gregg feels are the biggest takeaways from his book, and how to take action on those points
  • Why complacency is dangerous, and why mid-sized firms who are doing “well enough” are often adversely affected by new technologies
  • Why “structural inertia” and “dominant logic inertia” are the two main threats to a company that can cause it to stand still
  • How to break out of your own patterns and take brave steps to shake up your business
  • What influential lesson Gregg learned from his grandfather that shaped his career and business philosophies
  • What four key strategies and pieces of advice Gregg wants to share with business owners

Additional resources:

Feb 22, 2019

Les McKeown became the co-founder an incubation consulting company that advised on the creation and growth of literally hundreds of organizations worldwide, with at its peak 13 offices in 7 countries worldwide.

Now Les advises CEOs and senior leaders of organizations just like yours on how to achieve scalable, sustainable growth, speaks to Fortune 500 companies about his breakthrough strategies, is one of Inc.’s top contributing authors. He is also the author of three books on growth leadership, one a Wall St Journal and USA Today bestseller, and a much-in-demand public speaker.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • How Les began his entrepreneurial journey, starting with his role as an independent consultant in his early 20s
  • How Les’s role began to transition into joining and helping found startup businesses as a serial entrepreneur
  • Why Les began teaching entrepreneurs to start and grow their businesses and transitioned his career again
  • What patterns Les looks at to predict the success or failure of an organization, and what life cycles every business goes through
  • How Les’s work helps business owners put their challenges and opportunities into perspective
  • Why it is possible to reverse an organization’s “aging” and go back to the predictable success stage
  • Les shares case studies of organizations that went through the aging arc into decline
  • Why the parts of an organization can be in different parts of the life cycle, and why the parts on the right side of the arc can bring down the rest
  • Which skill is most important to help business owners move from the whitewater stage to the predictable success stage
  • Why Apple CEO Tim Cook is an excellent example of a leader scaling a business through effective team-building

Additional resources:

Feb 20, 2019

Jay Baer, CSP is the world’s most retweeted person among digital marketers. He is a business strategist, keynote speaker, and the New York Times best-selling author of five books including “Hug Your Haters.” Jay has advised more than 700 companies including Caterpillar, Nike, Allstate, The United Nations and 32 of the FORTUNE 500. He is the founder of Convince & Convert, a strategy consulting firm that helps companies gain and keep more customers through the intersection of technology, social media, and customer service. His Convince & Convert Media division owns the world’s #1 content marketing blog, the world’s top marketing podcast, and many other educational resources for business owners and executives. Jay is the creator of five multi-million dollar companies, he is an active venture capitalist, and technology advisor, as well, Onward Nation…an avid tequila collector and certified barbecue judge.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • Why Jay wrote his new book “Talk Triggers: The Complete Guide to Creating Customers with Word of Mouth”
  • Why word of mouth is the best and most effective way to grow your business, and why it is too often ignored
  • Why it is difficult to measure word of mouth success, and why being good at your business isn’t enough to get people talking about you
  • How Jay defines a talk trigger, and how Jay’s 4-5-6 system can help you create a good talk trigger
  • Why an effective talk trigger must always be remarkable, repeatable, reasonable, and relevant
  • Why going over the top with your attempt to get people talking about your brand often backfires
  • What are the five types of talk triggers, how each is distinct, and how you should stick to just one type
  • Why the culture of your business may favor one particular type of talk trigger over the others
  • How to create an effective talk trigger including the important steps you must take to get the results you want

Additional resources:

Feb 18, 2019

Bruce Mack, owner and founder of Platinum Financing Group, knows that his funding options and asset protection programs are the perfect solution for all business owners to achieve complete financial freedom. With his impressive credentials and decades of experience helping thousands of clients, Bruce has honed unique skill sets and the ideal perspective to help entrepreneurs achieve their goals by implementing customized funding solutions tailored to each needs.

Platinum Financing Group has the most comprehensive funding programs available in the industry. Their 0% APR program for up to 21 months is just one unique example of a program that typifies Bruce's quest to bring the best options to startups and existing business owners. As a licensed financial advisor and past owner of a licensed and bonded credit repair company, Bruce empowers small business growth through lines of credit, corporate credit building programs, term loans, bridge, and gap loan financing. He also promotes a highly-specialized self-directed retirement account as a funding option that can be used for any business purpose. Bruce is especially passionate on educating clients about asset protection and the tax mitigation benefits through the utilization and implementation of his unique, specialized Business Trust.

With a client-first philosophy, Bruce and his team at Platinum Financing Group are working to build whatever their clients need to achieve their dreams.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • How Bruce transitioned a career as a corporate headhunter and banker into his current role with Platinum Trust Group
  • Why Bruce got involved in real estate transactions, and why it set him on his current path helping others maintain their finances
  • How Bruce helps his clients with funding, asset protection, and repairing their credit reports and scores
  • Why people often end up hurting their own credit situations out of necessity, and why 30% utilization hurts your credit
  • Why you should be using business cards for your purchases as they don’t report to your FICO
  • Why inconsistencies between your reports with the three credit bureaus can harm your credit standing
  • How inquiries can damage your credit, and why inquiry removal as a form of credit repair can help
  • Why asset protection is vital for any business owner, and why a “corporate veil” isn’t sufficient protection
  • How to find out more information about asset protection and Platinum Trust Group’s services
  • Why it is important to go to a professional for assistance rather than trying to do it yourself

Additional resources:

Feb 15, 2019

Ted Thomas is a Florida based educator, publisher and author. Thomas is publisher and author of more than 30 books. His guidebooks on Real Estate have sold in four counties of the world. In the recent past, over 75,000 clients have carefully evaluated Ted Thomas’ QuickStart Introduction In Secured Tax Lien Certificates and have chosen to become associated with the market leader. Thomas’ Home Study Materials are international bestsellers and draw clients from Europe and South America.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • How Ted transitioned a career as an airline pilot into a real estate business, and became an advisor to others
  • What leverage risks Ted warns against, and how he helps others create value and grow their wealth
  • What a tax lien certificate is, and how you can buy tax liens to create profits from unpaid taxes safely
  • Why tax certificates are an underutilized and secure way to invest your money, and how their returns work
  • How the rules for tax certificates very by states, and why it is important to understand the rules and penalties
  • Why auctions are prevalent all over the country, but are a hidden investment gem that few people take advantage of
  • Why the southern part of the United States is the most friendly toward tax certificate sales
  • How 97% of all tax certificates will pay you out in 6 months or less, and how you will get ownership of the property if you don’t get paid
  • Why the rules governing tax certificates often predate the interconnectivity of the states from the interstate system
  • How to get more information and learn about Ted’s tax lien certificate purchase system

How to reach out to Ted Thomas:

Feb 13, 2019

John Mitchell is fascinated by how a person can take science and apply it to their life to substantially increase their success and achievement in life. In particular 2 scientific discoveries that were profiled in a Time magazine cover story. John’s 12-minute a day success formula impacts a person’s career, significant other relationship, and their health. It doubles their control over themselves and focuses them on what really moves the needle in their life.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • What has been happening for John since his previous appearance on Onward Nation in episode #581
  • Why turning 50 was a defining moment for John, inspiring him to change his approach to life with the goal of making $1 million a year
  • How the book Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill changed John’s life, and how John implemented the book’s wisdom into his life twelve minutes a day
  • Why John feels passionate about sharing his Think It Be It methodology with high-achieving business leaders
  • How John’s methodology differs from everything else in the areas of personal development and success
  • How to evaluate your life and determine which areas you could stand to make improvements in
  • Why twelve minutes a day is enough time to completely reprogram your brain and become the person you want to be
  • Why John’s methods are based upon brain science and its application, and how the science works
  • John shares his story of realizing that his methodology is only meant for people willing to put in the twelve minutes a day necessary

How to reach out to John Mitchell:

  • Text “genius” to 44222
Feb 11, 2019

Bob Dusin is the co-author of Creating the High Performance Work Place. Collaborating with leaders and organizations in all industries, he instills this philosophy to help create the highest performing and most highly engaged work environments possible.

Bob grew up on a wheat and cattle farm in western Kansas and earned a degree in Civil Engineering from Kansas State University, followed by a Master of Business Administration from Rockhurst University. In the early part of his career he worked as a Construction Project Manager, then went on to be the co-owner of a concrete construction company. Following that he altered his career course, becoming the Human Resources and Training Director for a national construction firm. Bob has been a trainer, facilitator, coach and speaker for more than 15 years.

Bob is a member of the National Speakers Association and speaks at numerous expos and events throughout the country each year. He is also a commercial voiceover and video actor, and a professional comedy improvisor.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • How Bob’s career journey taught him the value of a work ethic and gave him perspective on the people side of business
  • Why Bob feels passionate about his hobby of performing improv comedy, and how it taught him to confront his fears
  • What valuable business lessons Bob has been able to draw from his experience with improv groups
  • Why the key to a high-performance workplace is in having a deep belief that the people on your team are capable and have value
  • Why a high-performance workplace needs to have strong relationships and allow people to thrive and excel
  • What important lessons Bob feels can be drawn from his book “Creating the High Performance Work Place” and applied to your own business
  • How to foster a workplace environment where your team feels valued and empowered to succeed
  • Why positive reinforcement needs to involve gratitude, an explanation of the impact the team member has made, and recognition of what it says about their character
  • Why you should try to avoid the word “but” and say “and” instead, and why punishment never makes someone get better at their job

How to reach out to Bob Dusin:

Feb 8, 2019

Colin Sprake is a four-time best-selling author and mentor to well over 50,000 entrepreneurs!

Colin has built several different million dollar businesses within 6 months. He has over 30 years of business experience having come from the mining industry to building his own multi-million dollar businesses from the ground up.

A dedicated teacher, Colin is the Master Trainer at Make Your Mark Training and Consulting and is devoted to people achieving huge success in their businesses. His purpose is to assist business owners to dramatically improve the number of businesses that succeed. After all, failing businesses affect us all in negative ways.

Using decades of business experience, Colin speaks and trains on a wide variety of topics for corporations, organizations & associations. Colin Sprake is all about delivering what is required to achieve the desired result and holding you accountable for your own success.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • What has been happening for Colin since his previous guest visit to Onward Nation in episode 730
  • How Colin is refocusing and re-prioritizing his efforts in 2019 and measuring the “right” metrics
  • Why Colin owns his challenges and mistakes, and why he believes strongly in the Law of Attraction
  • Why your daily habits and your thoughts directly impact the energy you attract into your life
  • How Colin uses abundance and gratitude meditation to put himself into the mindset for success every day, morning and night
  • Why it’s critical to be clear, deliberate and intentional in what you want (and don’t want) in your life
  • How to avoid “self-fulfilling prophecies” by changing your mindset and opening yourself to an abundance
  • How Colin’s team invokes the Law of Attraction throughout all aspects of his business
  • Why the words “I am too busy right now” actually mean “you are not a priority to me right now”
  • Why Colin defines happiness as the ability to do what he wants, when he wants, with whom he wants, without being constrained by time or money

How to connect with Colin Sprake:

Feb 6, 2019

Sean Pillot de Chenecey has over 20 years experience as a brand expert, combining marketing consultancy with ethnographic activity and trend research around the world. His clients have included Unilever, Swatch, Heineken, Diageo, General Motors, Beiersdorf, AXA, Costa, Vodafone, Kerrygold and Starwood. He’s collaborated with numerous international advertising, branding, design, media and PR agencies. He is a lecturer at the University of the Arts London, and has written for Dazed, Admap, Brand Strategy, Marketing and Contagious. A public speaker, he’s given speeches for over a decade in Asia, Europe, Africa, the Middle East and North America.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • Sean’s background, including service in the British army, and his transition into the business world
  • How Sean’s work has evolved to helping brands navigate the difficult business challenges of today
  • Why the societal challenge of truth and trust extend beyond politics to the business world
  • How Nike found itself at the center of a cultural storm in the 90s, and how its ad agency navigated the challenge
  • Why trust is the key to every relationship in your life, whether professional or personal
  • Why things have dramatically changed for Silicon Valley companies as trust in them has weakened
  • Why privacy is an ongoing concern for global society, and why brands are expected to address these serious concerns
  • Why you as a business owner must be passionate and adhere to your beliefs, especially in your business dealings
  • Why lies are becoming more common, and why it’s important to break through with honesty and authenticity
  • How Facebook’s recent privacy and honesty challenges have expanded beyond their business to impact many areas of society

How to contact Sean Pillot de Chenecey:

Feb 5, 2019

Stephen is the founder and CEO of Predictive ROI, a digital marketing agency, and the host of Onward Nation — a top-rated daily podcast for learning how today’s top business owners think, act and achieve. Onward Nation is listened to in 120 countries around the world.

Stephen is the author of three books, including the #1 best seller, “Profitable Podcasting,” and his digital marketing insights have been featured in,, The Washington Post, and Inc. Magazine.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • Why focusing on a huge audience or more customers isn’t as important as focusing on the audience you have
  • Why focusing on going narrow and deep with your business in 2019 will help you find true success
  • How true thought leaders aren’t superficial, and why their authenticity and focus on their audience is key
  • Why you should read the book “Niche Down: How to Become Legendary by Being Different” by Christopher Lochhead and Heather Clancy
  • What benefits you can expect from taking a niche down approach to your business this year
  • Why your business should have three tangentially connected areas of expertise, and why it’s okay that some clients aren’t the right fit for your business
  • Why focusing on a niche audience will help you monetize your content much faster than if you were to go broad
  • How the book “Killing Marketing: How Innovative Businesses Are Turning Marketing Costs Into Profit” by Joe Pulizzi and Robert Rose can help you monetize your content
  • What three actionable steps you can take to maximize the impact of your narrow but deep cornerstone content
  • Why you should listen to Onward Nation episode 854 as a great companion to this episode

Additional resources:

Feb 4, 2019

Rick Miller is an unconventional turnaround specialist, a servant leader, and a go-to Chief. He is also an executive coach, an author, a speaker, and an expert at driving sustainable growth. For over 30 years, Rick served as a successful business executive in roles including President and/or CEO in a Fortune 10, a Fortune 30, a startup, and a non-profit. In each case, he was recruited from the outside to turn around poor performance in difficult times.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • How Rick learned valuable business lessons from his father, the only HR person at one of the only non-union machine shops in Massachusetts
  • Why Rick is as focused on “human capital” as he is on financial capital in the organizations he works with
  • Why Rick chose to call his book “Be Chief: It’s a Choice, Not a Title”, and how it relates to his definition of power
  • How energy comes from self-understanding and the ability to “be still” despite all the background noise
  • Why clearly understanding your own values is critical for leading and influencing other people
  • Why all of Rick’s proceeds from the sales of his book will be donated to children with special needs
  • How to get access to a free questionnaire that will help you define your values compass and score you on clarity, influence, energy, confidence and impact
  • What differentiates “go go”, “go… but” and “no go” employees from each other, and why the distinction matters
  • What “I3K” is, and why it is the secret recipe for success in a leadership role and in business
  • How to reach out to Rick Miller, and why Rick’s book is different from other leadership books available

How to contact Rick Miller:

Feb 1, 2019

Jeff Koser is the spirited founder and CEO of Selling to Zebras. Zebra is an AI-driven Sales Enablement Automation Platform that creates a guided sales experience that directs sellers and buyers through a sales engagement. Zebra identifies perfect prospects (Zebras), decision makers and generates buyer specific presentations that are presented right in the software. Leverage ZEBRA to run your sales engagements and close 90% of the business you pursue faster, more easily and more profitably!

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • How Jeffrey’s 30+ year background in software and sales helped guide his career path to his current position as CEO of Zebrafi
  • Why the cumbersome difficulty of using Excel caused Jeffrey’s company to decide to develop its own software
  • Why Jeffrey’s 20-year-old “Selling to Zebras” B2B consultancy business transitioned to Zebrafi on January 1, 2019
  • How Jeffrey and his team recognized the opportunity to pivot their business into a new SaaS (software as a service) entity
  • How Jeffrey’s company evolved, and how they developed their new business model to solve their clients’ problems
  • Why some salespeople struggle to become a “trusted advisor” to their clients, and why Zebrafi is different
  • How Zebrafi’s software determines a “zebra” through rating seven attributes on a scale of 0-4
  • How Zebrafi helps their customers clearly define their purpose, culture and what they need to do to find success
  • What important lessons Jeffrey learned from his own mentors, and how they impacted his business philosophy
  • Why perseverance was critical to Zebrafi’s success, despite some early failures developing their own software

Additional resources: