Onward Nation

America's best podcast for learning how today's top business owners Think, Act, and 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: September, 2017
Sep 29, 2017

Thom King is the founder of Steviva Brands, one of the largest importers, manufacturers, and distributors of clean-label sweetening systems and natural sweeteners that provide consumers with a healthy alternative to sugar. Focusing on simple, elegant solutions that yield a dramatic impact, his work is responsible for food manufacturers creating products that contain 50% – 90% fewer sugars. Part CEO, part personal development work, and part biohacker-info geek, Thom is a self-confessed serial entrepreneur.

What you’ll learn about in this episode

  • How to take a genesis of an idea and turn that idea into a business
  • The importance of never doubting yourself when facing struggles in your business
  • Understanding the grind and hustle needed to succeed in business
  • Using your experiences in business, both good and bad, to shape the person you are
  • How contributions by your employees and customers impact your success
  • Why leadership is the most critical skill business owners need to master
  • How surrounding yourself with the very best people leads to success
  • Avoiding pitfalls in your business by having standard operating procedures
  • Why looking for emotional intelligence in new hires is important
  • The power of planning your work and working your plan

How to best connect with Thom:

Sep 28, 2017

Tony Daloisio is the author of CHANGE! THE WAY YOU CHANGE, a principal of The Highlands Group and founder and CEO of Charter Oak Consulting. He specializes in consulting with CEOs and their teams to build capability, implement strategy, and support major change. He has extensive experience coaching senior executives and executive teams to effectively transform their business. He has worked with leaders from Emory University Healthcare, New York Life, the US Social Security Administration, and others.

What you’ll learn about in this episode

  • Why engagement of the strategy by key stakeholders is important
  • Why less than 30% of change efforts are successful
  • The importance of delegating tasks
  • Why you shouldn’t let yourself get bogged down with perfectionism
  • Having a “heads up, heads down” mentality
  • How to create real change within your organization
  • Creating a safe environment so your employees feel free to express their opinions
  • The importance of creating a personal relationship with your employees
  • How being open to feedback can lead to great success
  • Why going the extra mile for your customers is critical to your business’s success

How to best connect with Tony:

Sep 27, 2017

Bix and Joe Bickson are organizational consultants who have consulted with major corporations, institutions, non-profit organizations and individuals throughout the world. They have helped transform the cultures of some of the world’s most recognizable brands including Microsoft, Ford, Starbucks, and many more. Today, they are regarded as “Future Hackers” – re-imagining management for today’s world by providing leaders with the essential tools required to push past what’s in the way of creating and fulfilling the future.

What you’ll learn about in this episode

  • Why leaders need to change themselves in order to affect their company’s performance
  • Self-transcendence: the need to adapt and evolve
  • Finding the solution to the presenting problem within your business
  • The importance of recognizing the need for a support system
  • Knowing the difference between “knowing” your thoughts and “being” your thoughts
  • The importance of taking actions that create new habits
  • How culture is the conversations that take place in the organization
  • Improving company culture by having employees take ownership in the decisions being made
  • Recognizing you have a story but you don’t have to be your story
  • How learning who you are is vital in developing your businesses core values

How to best connect with Bix and Joe:

Sep 26, 2017

Meredith Bell is co-founder and President of Performance Support Systems, a global software company whose products are used by business consultants, executive coaches, and Human Resource professionals to help managers become more effective leaders. She’s an expert in helping companies develop the people side of their business and understands what’s required to build the loyalty and commitment that lead to repeat business and referrals.

What you'll learn about in this episode

  • Creating leaders that bring out the best in their employees
  • How having good managers leads to employee retention
  • The importance of having shared values within your organization
  • Using a timer to reduce distractions and maintain focus
  • Why writing a list of projects and associated tasks are important
  • The power of expressing daily gratitude and appreciation
  • Growing your business based on the life you want to lead
  • Looking for ways to provide value to other people without expecting something in return
  • Why having fun and not taking yourself too seriously is a key to success
  • The positive outcomes that can result from looking at your business as a scientist

How to best connect with Meredith:

Sep 25, 2017

Evan Hackel is the creator of the concept and the author of, “Ingaging Leadership”.  He’s a successful business owner who has started more than 10 companies and is recognized as a thought leader, speaker, and author on leadership. One of his signature achievements was turning around a bankrupt business in four years and more than doubling system-wide sales to exceed $2 billion. He is also Founder and Principal of Ingage Consulting, a consulting firm headquartered in Woburn, Massachusetts.

What you'll learn about in this episode

  • The importance of sharing the vision and plan for the business with employees
  • Empowering employees and how it leads to your company’s success
  • Emphasising employee growth and training within your company
  • Why asking for your employees ideas is critical to your businesses success
  • How acknowledging employee ideas can be a powerful management tool
  • Creating a positive and engaging company culture starts with the owner
  • The importance of employee retention
  • How listening to understand can change the way you communicate with your employees
  • Sharing gratitude with others everyday and treating others with respect
  • Studying and emulating successful business owners who do what you do

How to best connect with Evan:

Sep 22, 2017

Justin Copie is the CEO of Innovative Solutions and is leading a bold move forward — instilling growth in employees and inspiring change well beyond the four walls of Innovative. Yes the 75 people working at Innovative don’t work for him — he works for them. As CEO and leader, Justin provides safety and direction, safety in voicing opinions, trying new things, and failing, and direction in where to go on the path to success. He serves others in cultivating a culture where people can come to work every day feeling safe and free to do what they love to do, and in turn help Innovative reach its vision.

What you'll learn about in this episode

  • Why culture is vital to your businesses success
  • Coming together as a company with a common set of values and beliefs
  • Letting the company’s standards and values drive hiring decisions
  • The importance of writing down your vital priorities at the beginning of each day
  • How planning for a small win each morning can affect your outlook for the day
  • Why pacing your energy each day can have a big impact on your success
  • Using self-awareness to become a better person and leader
  • The power of empathy when interacting with employees and clients
  • How using good judgement translates into making good decisions
  • Having a positive mindset by never seeing failures, just learning opportunities

How to best connect with Justin:

Sep 21, 2017

Lori Ames, a veteran book publicist, is the president and founder of ThePRFreelancer, a public relations agency specializing in publicity, marketing, and public relations for non-fiction book authors. She started her business in late 2010 after her son was diagnosed with an inoperable malignant brain tumor and believes that her reason for success is very simple - and that’s why she’s been nice to every person she’s spoken to for the past 25 years.

What you'll learn about in this episode

  • How stubbornness and determination can lead to success
  • How having fewer rules and more flexibility in the workplace leads to more focused employees
  • The importance of not listening to those who say something can’t be done
  • Why good communication is the most critical skill business owner need in order to thrive
  • Choosing good mentors who you respect and can learn from
  • Keeping emotion out of the hiring and firing of employees
  • Knowing when the time is right to start hiring employees
  • How being nice to everyone you come in contact with will help your future success
  • Staying true to your business by building a niche and being known for that niche
  • Blocking out negative talk by those who tell you that you won’t succeed

How to best connect with Lori:

Sep 20, 2017

Murray Priestley is a partner at Global Private Partners, a private equity investment firm based in Hong Kong. Since 1988, he’s provided executive level management to a range of businesses. Working from an in-depth understanding of financial markets, information technology & customer service, Murray has bridged the gap between strategy & operational requirements. He’s also the author of two books, including “The Great Business Shape-up” and “The $1 million Pay Day”.

What you will learn in this episode:

  • Why the biggest problem with most small businesses is often the owner
  • Helping expand your customer base by stepping back to focus on the big picture
  • Why having multiple centralized systems in place is important
  • Preventing a communication breakdown between you and your employees
  • Split testing: what is it and how can it help your business grow
  • How most businesses fail to take advantage of every marketing opportunity
  • As a business owner, why it’s important to be honest with yourself regarding your business
  • How to master asking yourself the right questions in your business
  • Knowing the right time to move on from an opportunity that is no longer working
  • Focusing on the thing you are best at and not trying to be everything to everybody

How to contact Murray:

Sep 19, 2017

John Mitchell nearly owned 12 percent of the Dallas Cowboys and shares the incredible story at the beginning of our interview. Today, John is an entrepreneur and founder of “Think It, Be it” — a human performance company for high achievers that was born out of his fascination of how a person can take science and apply it to their life to substantially increase their chances for success, both personally and professionally. John’s 12-minute a day success formula helps people to gain more self-control and focus to up their game and move to the next level.

What you’ll learn about in this episode

  • Being straight with your customers and looking after their best interests
  • How to apply science to your life to substantially increase your chance for success
  • Seeing the big picture and pushing past perceived barriers
  • Having the ability to determine what matters and what doesn’t in your business
  • Why being successful comes down to the actions you are taking
  • A 12 minute a day success formula
  • Exploring how repetition and the subconscious mind can help achieve goals
  • How to obtain your goals by feeding a detailed vision to yourself every day
  • Tracking your key behaviors
  • Eliminating negative self-talk

How to best connect with John:

Sep 18, 2017

Evan Polin is the co-author of SELLING PROFESSIONAL SERVICES THE SANDLER WAY which teaches non-selling professionals how to sell. He is also a certified Sandler trainer who plays an important role in Sandler’s worldwide organization, Sandler Training – the world leader in sales development training programs. Along with his father, Evan co-heads a Sandler Training center in the Philadelphia area.

What you’ll learn about in this episode

  • Why selling and business development is important
  • Having the right mindset to be successful
  • Why if you are not willing to grow, you are not willing to change
  • Sales: a skillset that needs to be built over time
  • How to set sales goals by making a plan
  • How to apply the sales plan to obtain business prospects
  • Why tracking your sales activity is important
  • Qualifying or disqualifying your business opportunities as quickly as possible
  • Keeping focused and prioritize to achieve your sales goals
  • Seeking out a mentor is critical to your success

How to best connect with Evan:

Sep 15, 2017

Christine Comaford is a leadership and culture coach and New York Times bestselling author. For over 30 years, she has helped leaders navigate growth & change. Christine is sought after for providing proven strategies to shift executive behavior to create more positive outcomes, enroll and align teams in times of change, profoundly increase sales, product offerings, and company value. Her coaching, consulting and strategies have created hundreds of billions of dollars in new revenue and value for her clients.

What you’ll learn about in this episode

  • The story being Christine’s newest book, “Power Your Tribe”
  • How to align people around your values & create tribal agility as a team
  • The recipe for emotional engagement
  • The benefits of creating a cultural game plan & the key components
  • Important questions to ask when recruiting to help you determine if someone is ‘tribally’ aligned with you
  • The secret behind onboarding and keeping people at your company
  • The power of asking more questions & not assuming
  • Why emotional agility is so important
  • Why you need to focus on the outcome that you want to create
  • The importance of asking the question “what’s working?”

How to best connect with Christine:

Sep 14, 2017

Shawn Murphy serves as CEO of WorqIQ, formerly Switch and Shift, an organization that helps leaders transform the work experience to be positive, energizing & optimistic. His debut book, “The Optimistic Workplace: Creating an Environment that Energizes Everyone”, is out now. Shawn was recently named a “Top 100 Leadership Speaker” in and has over 25 years’ experience as an organizational and culture change practitioner and workshop facilitator.

What you’ll learn about in this episode

  • Why change is a very emotional experience for people
  • Where a lot of business owners lose sight when changing their business
  • What happens when business owners don’t account for emotional impact
  • Why you need to be able to work with detractors who are resistant to change
  • Working together to figure out what change means
  • Why vulnerability is a key skill that’s needed during times of change
  • The valuable lesson that Shawn learned that helped him with sales
  • Why you need to have a shared sense of purpose with your team
  • How clarity gives people the comfort to act autonomously
  • The importance of having mentors to be successful in business

How to best connect with Shawn:

Sep 13, 2017

Elizabeth Crook has been the CEO of Orchard Advisors for the past 20+ years and in that role, has helped other CEOs and entrepreneurs think and act strategically to grow their companies & find greater personal satisfaction. She has shown countless individuals how to invent and reinvent themselves. Elizabeth knows how to inspire people to gain a fresh sense of what they can accomplish in their lives, think about themselves with compassion, develop a sense of humor about their challenges, and ultimately…take action.

What you’ll learn about in this episode

  • Embracing how big you really are, without diminishing yourself
  • Using your talents, experiences, resources, and knowledge in an intentional way
  • Understanding the connection between your wellness and success
  • Working together with others to pursue the common good
  • Time blocking strategies that will help you to accomplish your goals
  • Putting your most vital priorities into order and finding clarity for you day
  • Developing habit that can contribute to your success
  • Finding the discipline to use writing to improve your life
  • Cultivating self-awareness, the most important skill for entrepreneurs today

How to best connect with Elizabeth:

Sep 12, 2017

Dr. Jeff Thompson is an executive advisor and chief executive officer emeritus at Gundersen Health System, pediatrician, author, and speaker. His experience in leadership is far-reaching, having led diverse teams, projects, and divisions, before holding multiple senior executive roles, including fourteen years as CEO of Gundersen Health System. Dr. Thompson is also the author of “Lead True: Live Your Values, Build Your People, Inspire Your Community.”

What you’ll learn about in this episode

  • Unleashing the power of multiple people with the same set of values
  • Jeff’s involvement in developing an advanced care planning program for seniors that is the most widely used in the world today
  • The benefits of building a culture that focuses on something bigger than yourself
  • Having the discipline to live by the values that you develop
  • Why there should be no exceptions to treating everyone with respect
  • Why you shouldn’t be afraid of high standards when you’re building a business
  • One of the key pieces to innovation
  • Why CEO’s & leaders need to get out where the work really is
  • Jeff’s new book “Lead True: Live Your Values, Build Your People, Inspire Your Community”
  • The importance of reading as much as you can

How to best connect with Jeff:

Sep 11, 2017

David Fairley is the founder and president of Website, a brokerage that specializes in selling established and profitable Internet-based businesses. David also personally developed, bought and sold,,, and over 60 website businesses in multiple niches. He has represented more than 475 Internet-based business owners in the sale of their websites.

What you’ll learn about in this episode

  • Successfully navigating building and exiting from companies
  • Lessons learned from working through sales and acquisitions
  • How to be organized and energize yourself to work through the day
  • New opportunities for those looking to sell or acquire businesses
  • Taking advantage of opportunities that make the most profit
  • Being driven to succeed no matter what your circumstances
  • Preparation and diligence that are required to act on opportunity
  • How to leverage multiple revenue streams in the online marketplace
  • Crafting a business that matters and serves a higher purpose

How to best connect with David:

Sep 8, 2017

Stephen Petith is an internationalization architect, working to create internationalized businesses and lifestyles for his clients. He has started, sold, and operates businesses around the world. Stephen uses his knowledge gained from past businesses and political roles to provide his clients with strategic advice on business and personal internationalization.

What you’ll learn about in this episode

  • Buying and selling businesses internationally
  • Embracing the globalized economy and profiting from it
  • Processes and practices that lead to growth internationally
  • Using international hubs to be at the epicenter of the global economy
  • Creating the right foundation for globalization
  • Avoiding the money draining mistakes of taking your company international
  • Having the right relationships to go take part in the worldwide economy
  • Excellent time management strategies for personal growth
  • Constantly seeking and finding new knowledge

How to best connect with Stephen:

Sep 7, 2017

Sam Mallikarjunan is a Marketing Fellow at HubSpot and former Head of Growth at HubSpot Labs, the somewhat-secret experimental arm of the world’s #1 Sales & Marketing platform. Sam teaches Advanced Digital Marketing at the Harvard Division of Continuing Education, and is the co-author of the book “How To Sell Better Than Amazon” (which, thanks to the publisher, is ironically available for purchase on Amazon).”

What you’ll learn about in this episode

  • Using online marketing in creative ways that cost nearly nothing
  • Cutting down on your “cognitive calories” to focus on useful tasks
  • Motivational techniques derived from evolutionary science
  • What cognitive science researchers have learned about human needs
  • Mitigating the toll taken by stress or pressure from work and life
  • Consistently challenging yourself on your values
  • The latest social research from Deloitte
  • Customer obsession and methodical empathy for enhanced business development
  • Why HubSpot became the number one marketing platform based on customer focus

How to best connect with Sam:

Sep 6, 2017

Kendall Lyman is the author of “CHANGE THE WAY YOU CHANGE!”, a founding principal of The Highlands Group, a firm specializing in strategy, organizational change, and leadership development. He helps leaders around the world to navigate change, improve employee engagement, and transform culture. Kendall has consulted with a wide array of organizations ranging from Fortune 500 to small and midsize firms.

What you’ll learn about in this episode

  • Increasing your own capacity as a leader
  • Tips and strategies for expanding your influence
  • Developing the self-awareness needed to be a great leader
  • Time blocking strategies that help you guard your calendar
  • Focusing on strategy rather than tactics
  • Why the effective vs. efficiency dichotomy is a sucker’s choice
  • Adopting a holistic view in order to be a successful leader
  • Raising your standards and what you expect in order to live a better life
  • Managing by wandering, looking at the journey and not the destination

How to best connect with Kendall:

Sep 5, 2017

Mark Sears is Founder and CEO of Cloud Factory, a fast-growing startup focused on changing how the world works. They’re using technology to make it super easy for startups and fast-growing companies to scale, by offloading routine, data-centric work so they can focus on innovation and growth. Their mission is to create meaningful work for 1 million people in the developing world.

What you’ll learn about in this episode

  • Scaling up human potential with innovative cloud-based strategies
  • Promoting the flourishing of yourself and your people
  • Doing good work and living your values by helping those in need
  • Cloud labor and what it can offer to your growing organization
  • The online work movement and how it can revolutionize your business
  • How to access thousands of high-performing and motivated workers
  • Developing the skill of learning and using it to power your success
  • Improving the experiences of your employees and customers
  • The importance of mentorship when on a path to success

How to best connect with Mark:

Sep 1, 2017

Christina Crawford is the president of Bubble Pop Beauty, an Atlanta-based, e-commerce hair and skincare brand designed for young female consumers. She was inspired to launch the brand by her seven-year-old daughter. Before launching Bubble Pop Beauty, Christina held various positions in marketing, branding, and promotions at various corporations for more than 13 years. She is a fashion junkie, an avid reader, loves to travel, cook, exercise, and most importantly, spend time with her family.

What you’ll learn about in this episode

  • Defining your everyday course in which you live your life
  • How to define yourself and be who you want to be
  • Getting past whatever is stopping you
  • Using mindfulness meditation to refocus and empower yourself
  • Getting down the details in order to grow your new business
  • Finding the inner strength to move forward even when it seems impossible
  • Why entrepreneurship is a unique opportunity for women
  • Overcoming the mental obstacles that stand between you and your dreams
  • The most critical skill business owners need to master to thrive

How to best connect with Christina: