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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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Oct 27, 2016

Thomas Lindsay has 20 years of insurance and professional employer organization (or PEO) industry experience in C-level management, focusing on all aspects of workers compensation, risk management, loss control, employee benefits, HR, and payroll. He recently resigned as the COO of a large PEO and is currently the owner and CEO of Humanly HR, a PEO services sales organization, and founder and host of SmallBiz Brainiac, a podcast providing employer intelligence to small business owners. His goal is for his clients to thrive as an employer and become a leader in their industry.

Secret – timesaving technique

Thomas turns off his phone, turns the notifications off on his computer, and closes the door -- eliminate distractions so that you can focus on what needs to get done. ONWARD!

Daily habit that contributes to success

Keep track of your important ideas -- Thomas writes down his thoughts and then implements the important ones into his CRM.

Could have ruined your business – but now – an invaluable learning experience

Thomas had to close his doors when he couldn't find insurance after the industry was impacted by 9/11 -- and Thomas tells the whole story here.

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"Financial discipline -- at the end of the day you need be profitable."

Most influential lesson learned from a mentor

"Be tenacious and don't give up."  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

What systems would you go back and put into place sooner?

I would have been more focused on a specific service offering and do that better than anyone -- don't try to be all things to all people.

What one strategy or “recipe” would compound into big wins for business owners?

Focus on short term objectives and break them down into tasks.

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. Keep your business model as simple as possible
  2. Always be profitable -- focus on today
  3. Say no to distractions

How best to connect with Thomas:

Oct 26, 2016

Stephen is the CEO of Predictive ROI and the host of the Onward Nation podcast. He is the author of two bestselling books, speaker, trainer, and his digital marketing insights have been featured in SUCCESS, Entrepreneur, The Washington Post, Forbes, Inc. Magazine, and other media.

Good Morning Onward Nation…welcome to Episode 352…I’m Stephen Woessner. I am really looking forward to this solocast — because — we are going to tackle what I am beginning to consider as the most expensive money draining constraint inside any business.

And I suppose it is not fair or accurate to say inside any business — because this mistake actually happens inside us. It is something that is completely within our control — and to make matters worse — it is a constraint we put into place — and it keeps us from moving forward.

That constraint is the Imposter Syndrome, Onward Nation.

After interviewing nearly 400 of today’s top business owners around the world — I can tell you with 100 percent certainty — that every single person who has walked this Earth has felt the effect of the syndrome pushing them down and applying great weight to their shoulders.

No matter how big and successful someone may seem on the outside — the syndrome is there.

If you have been listening to Onward Nation a while now — you have heard our guests talk about the Imposter Syndrome — and — what the syndrome actually is. And that is fear.

Fear of uncertainty — or there is also the reverse of that — the fear of certainty.

The fear of not achieving significance.

The fear of failure or the fear of success.

There are many types of fear and it paralyzes us from making important decisions or taking action on new opportunities like you hiring the additional staff we need because remain small seems like the prudent thing to do.

Or…not buying the new piece of equipment because what if you don’t have enough orders to run it at full capacity?

Or…not launching that podcast you have always dreamt of because what if no one tunes in an listens and you can’t get guests to join you on the show?

Or…not knocking on the door of investors who would be excellent partners of yours but you are tired all getting all of the NOs!

So here’s the good news.

All of the pain and pressure fear causes us to feel on a daily basis is actually pretty simple to fix when have the right recipe for success. And the recipe I am going to share with you is something I learned from John Livesay, a good friend of mine and one of today’s leading experts in helping business owners go from invisible to investible.

John helps business owners and executives craft a compelling pitch that engages investors in a way that inspires them to join a startup’s team. John is also the host of the brilliant “The Successful Pitch podcast,” the author of the new book “The Successful Pitch — Conversations About Going from Invisible to Investible,” and Inc. Magazine calls John “The Pitch Whisperer.”

Impressive credentials.

But, John and his business partner — Judy Robinett — also help business owners get ready to make a successful pitch to investors so the business gets funded — and in many instances — get funded fast — because of Judy’s impressive connections within the investor community.

You may remember Judy as our rock solid awesome guest in Episode 329 of Onward Nation and John will be my guest on Episode 360, which will air on Monday, November 7th.

What I love about John’s approach to working with business owners in creating their successful pitch is how he smartly addresses what he calls “The Three Faces of Fear” right at the onset the working relationship.

Why is this important?

Because if John can help a business owner get past their fear — and these three fears specifically — then the probability of the business owner delivering a successful pitch and getting funded increases exponentially.

How does John know this?

Because it is exactly what he had to do inside his own business.

The tech startups John was helping with their pitch kept telling him, “This is great. We definitely need help but what we also need are warm introductions to investors now that we have this great pitch.”

But John kept saying to his clients, “I don’t do that. I don’t know any investors.”

But, there were enough business owners asking John to make the introductions that he realized he should follow his own advice… “If your customers and clients are telling you something that they want and are willing to pay for, then maybe you should figure out how to get it for them.”

So John’s Successful Pitch podcast was his way of building up his network of investors so he could introduce his clients, which it definitely did — but before he could begin to build the initial momentum — he had to overcome the Three Faces of Fear.

John shared with me that when he gets afraid to do something outside of his comfort zone, he has found success when he puts a “face” on it — otherwise, it just becomes too overwhelming and so fearful.

But if he can make the fear more tangible — then that’s the first step to overcoming the fear.

The three faces of fear are:

The Fear of Rejection.

The Fear of Failure

The Fear of the Unknown.

For John, he ran into the Fear of Rejection when he would say to himself, “Well, what if I invite someone to be on my podcast and they say, “No thanks,” or “Let’s hear several other episodes before I accept.”

But, he was able to push past this initial fear by drawing on his years of sales experience that told him — despite the fear, doubt, and pressure he was feeling inside — that key to victory was to never take rejections personally and to never reject yourself.

Onward Nation, don’t say “no” on behalf of your clients or prospects.

If they say no — so be it — but keep yourself in the game and keep on fighting.

The second fear John had to overcome was the Fear of Failure.

When you’re starting a podcast, a new business, or seeking capital from an investor, the Fear of Failure will knock on your door and say, “What if you invest all this time and all this money and nobody downloads and episode? Won’t that be humiliating? Won’t that be a waste of time and money?”

But thankfully for John, one of his early podcast guests was Jay Samit who wrote a book called, “Disrupt You.” In the book, Jay wrote, “Failure is just feedback. Keep going until you get a zombie idea so great it won’t die.”

Excellent advice from Jay, Onward Nation. And just a heads up — make a mental note — Jay Samit will be our guest on Episode 366, which will air on Tuesday, November 15th.

So John if you are listening — thank you for the wonderful introduction to Jay.

Then the third fear is the Fear of the Unknown.

The list of things John didn’t know about starting his podcast was a mile long, including what microphone to buy, how to edit the episodes, how to promote the show, all the way to what questions to ask during the interviews.

John had been a guest on many shows and media appearances, but never hosted one, which is a very different experience being on the host-side of the microphone. John found all of the technology-related items to be overwhelming and potentially could have been the thing that stopped him from launching the show.

But, then John found someone who could produce the show for him and all he had to focus on being a great host.

Boom. No more Fear of the Unknown.

John’s approach to conquering the three faces of fear is masterful and I encourage you to apply it. I also want to share with you and early detection system — something to warn you when you are about to get bombarded by fear — how can you prepare yourself for the thoughts to come next?

Excuses are an early indicator to fear. When we hear excuses playing or circling around in our mind — matched up with some sort of justification — it is likely because we are feeling the impact of fear. So I want to arm you with a list of 50 excuses that Napoleon Hill documented in his groundbreaking book, Think & Grow Rich.

If and when one of these thoughts comes into your mind, let it be your litmus test, that you are heading down the path of fear — it is time to confront it for what it is — dismiss it and move on. Or, if you hear one of your employees, colleagues, or friends say something similar to what is on the list…ask them…what are they afraid of…what is the worst that could happen?

Here is the complete list of 54 excuses…courtesy of Napoleon Hill:

  1. If I didn’t have a wife and family…
  2. If I had enough “pull”…
  3. If I had money…
  4. If I had a good education…
  5. If I could get a job…
  6. If I had good health…
  7. If I only had time…
  8. If times were better…
  9. If other people understood me…
  10. If conditions around me were only different…
  11. If I could live my life over again…
  12. If I did not fear what “they” would say…
  13. If I had been given a chance…
  14. If I now had a chance…
  15. If other people didn’t “have it in for me”…
  16. If nothing happens to stop me…
  17. If I were only younger…
  18. If I could only do what I want…
  19. If I had been born rich…
  20. If I could meet “the right people”…
  21. If I had the talent that some people have…
  22. If I dared assert myself…
  23. If I only had embraced past opportunities…
  24. If people didn’t get on my nerves…
  25. If I didn’t have to keep house and look after the children…
  26. If I could save some money…
  27. If the boss only appreciated me…
  28. If I only had somebody to help me…
  29. If my family understood me…
  30. If I lived in a big city…
  31. If I could just get started…
  32. If I had the personality of some people…
  33. If I were not so out of shape…
  34. If my talents were known…
  35. If I could just get a break…
  36. If I could only get out of debt…
  37. If I hadn’t failed…
  38. If I only knew how…
  39. If everybody didn’t oppose me…
  40. If I didn’t have so many worries…
  41. If I could marry the right person…
  42. If people weren’t so dumb…
  43. If my family were not so extravagant…
  44. If I were sure of myself…
  45. If luck were not against me…
  46. If I had not been born under the wrong star…
  47. If it were not true that “what is to be will be”…
  48. If I didn’t have to work so hard…
  49. If I hadn’t lost my money…
  50. If I lived in a different neighborhood…
  51. If I didn’t have a past…
  52. If only I had a business of my own…
  53. If other people would only listen to me…

And…here is the greatest excuse of them all, Onward Nation…

“If I had the courage to see myself as I really am, I would find out what is wrong with me and correct it, then I might have a chance to profit by my mistakes and learn something from the experience of others, for I know that there is something wrong with me, or I would now be where I would have been if I had spent time analyzing my weaknesses, and less time building excuses to cover them.”

Onward Nation, please realize that the fear you may be feeling right now is not real.

Fear is made up.

Fear doesn’t exist. Fear doesn’t have any power over you unless you let it.

The next time you are feeling pressure — the next time you are feeling fearful — would you please do me a favor?

Just pause — take a deep breath — tell yourself the emotions you are feeling right now are not real — that they are simply the Imposter Syndrome trying to keep you from your destiny — and then — remind yourself of the wise words from Marianne Williamson…

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’

“Actually, who are you not to be?

“You are a child of God. Playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.

“We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.

“As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” — Marianne Williamson, Author of A Return to Love: Reflections on the Principles of “A Course in Miracles”

Okay, Onward Nation?

So with that…I want to say thank you again for taking the time to be here with me today.

It is an honor to have you here — thank you for tuning in — I am delighted you chose this episode to be what you listen to, study, and take with you on your morning run, or maybe Onward Nation has become part of your daily commute, or in some other way has become part of your morning routine.

I want you to know how much I appreciate you sharing some of your invaluable 86,400 seconds you have in your day with me and the strategies we learn and share each day from today’s top business owners.

And please continue to let me know what you think of Onward Nation…good or bad…I always want your feedback. You can hit me up on Twitter, find us on Facebook, me on LinkedIn, or you are always welcome to email me directly at stephen@onwardnation.com — and yes — that is my actual email address — no fancy filters or filing system — it will come directly to me.

We will be back tomorrow with an incredible encore interview with Thomas Lindsay — you will not want to miss Thomas’s philosophy why keeping things simple — no matter what business you’re in — tends to be the pathway to profitability, Onward Nation. The conversation with Thomas is rock solid awesome.

Until then, onward with gusto!

Oct 25, 2016

Steve Goldstein is a proven leader who has held executive positions with leading global brands, such as Chairman and CEO of American Express Bank, President of Sears Credit, and Citigroup, as well as several early-stage enterprises. Steve has been an investor, advisor, and interim CEO for more than 10 venture backed e-commerce companies. He currently works in the private equity industry as a Senior Advisor with the consulting and advisory firm Alvarez & Marsal, serves as Chairman of US Auto Sales, serves as a Senior Advisor to Milestone Partners and an Industrial Advisor to EQT Partners (a global private equity firm based in Stockholm).

He has also advised CEOs and private equity owners providing counsel on performance improvement with their companies in addition to acquisitions and merger integration opportunities. His talks are based on his Five Principles of Engagement and are interwoven with stories from global companies to mid-size companies to startups.

What do you do in the first 60 minutes of your day?

Steve gets a lot done before anyone else wakes up -- he works out, eats breakfast, reads a couple of newspapers, checks his email, and takes a shower -- all before 7:30. ONWARD!

Favorite quote or lesson?

"Leadership is the courage to admit mistakes, the vision to welcome change, the enthusiasm to motivate others, and the others to stay out of step when everyone else is marching to the wrong tune." - Edward N. Cole

How do you define success?

Success is when you have an organization of people who fully understand what is required that are empowered to do whatever is needed to deliver what your customers want, when you have the ability to change and reinvent yourself, and when you create a sustainable business that morphs and endures.

What makes as "A player" an "A player"?

An "A player" is are highly qualified individuals that deserve to be there -- get rid of the people that are holding you back.  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

How can we become better mentors?

  1. Be a resource -- but don't give detailed instructions

How can business owners reach that elusive next level?

  1. Assess your business from an outside perspective
  2. Meet with employees and get their perspective on what is working
  3. Go through the same process with your customers

How best to connect with Steve:

Oct 24, 2016

Julie Broad is an award-winning entrepreneur, recognized real estate investor, and a popular speaker and workshop trainer. Known for helping new entrepreneurs who aren’t naturally born to sell, build a brand to get results, make an impact and ultimately make more money. Julie’s first book, “More than Cashflow”, debuted at #1 overall on Amazon Canada. Her newest release, “The New Brand You” is quickly climbing the sales charts after its official release in July.

Secret – timesaving technique

Julie believes it's about managing energy -- not managing time -- plan out your day the day before. ONWARD!

Daily habit that contributes to success

Hope is not a strategy -- Julie doesn't use words like "hope," "might," or "wish."

Could have ruined your business – but now – an invaluable learning experience

Julie put an incredible amount of time and money into a project that completely flopped -- and Julie tells the whole story here.

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"Know your audience and know what hooks them in."

Most influential lesson learned from a mentor

"You are the average of the 5-7 people you spend the most time with."  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

What systems would you go back and put into place sooner?

I would have tested everything before doing a full scale launch.

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. Surround yourself with great people
  2. Plan for things to take longer and cost more than you expect
  3. Take action

How best to connect with Julie:

Oct 21, 2016

George Athan is one of New York City’s top business growth experts. He has successfully consulted for companies in 75 different industries including niche markets. George specializes in helping business-to-business companies create predictable and scalable sales processes to achieve rapid business growth.

Secret – timesaving technique

George breaks down 90-day goals into 30-day goals into weekly and daily tasks -- focus on the tasks that you need to do to accomplish your goals. ONWARD!

Daily habit that contributes to success

Strategy isn't enough -- George habitually gets himself "juiced up" every day.

Could have ruined your business – but now – an invaluable learning experience

George tried to be all things to all people -- and George tells the whole story here.

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"Intense focus -- specifically on sales and marketing."

Most influential lesson learned from a mentor

"Stop being a perfectionist -- you'll never be perfect."  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

What systems would you go back and put into place sooner?

I would have focused on our lead generation process.

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. Keep your why in front of you
  2. Focus on what can be done -- not what can't

How best to connect with George:

Oct 20, 2016

John Hall is the co-founder of Influence & Co, a company focused on helping brands and individuals extract and leverage their expertise to create, publish, and distribute content to gain influence, visibility, and credibility with their key audiences. John has grown Influence & Co. into one of the largest providers of high-quality expert and influencer content to the world's top publications, ranking No. 72 on Forbes Most Promising Companies in America list and named Empact's Best Marketing and Advertising Company of 2014 at the United Nations. Influence & Co. was recently mentioned in Inc. as the # 1 Company Dominating Content Marketing. John was recognized by Forbes as the #1 Keynote Speaker For Digital Trends. He also has a weekly column for Forbes and Inc. and has contributed to more than 50 publications.

Secret – timesaving technique

John uses Antnotes -- keep track of what needs to be done and then accomplish it. ONWARD!

Daily habit that contributes to success

Think about who you talk to -- John challenges himself to be more thoughtful and helpful with his employees and others that he interacts with.

Could have ruined your business – but now – an invaluable learning experience

John went to a conference in the early days of his business -- it did not go well -- and John tells the whole story here.

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"You always need to be learning."

Most influential lesson learned from a mentor

"Be the person everyone wants on their team."  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

What systems would you go back and put into place sooner?

I would have drunk our own Kool-Aid a lot more.

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. Invest in yourself
  2. Control your story

How best to connect with John:

Oct 19, 2016

Jennifer Briney is the host of Congressional Dish, a twice monthly podcast exposing the secrets drowned out by the partisan noise in the United States Congress. By interpreting legislation, summarizing Congressional hearings, and following the money, Jennifer analyzes the actions of Congress that are generally ignored by the corporate media, delivering the information from the perspective of a fed up taxpayer who bears no allegiance to any political party or ideology.

Secret – timesaving technique

Jennifer only looks at email a couple times per week -- turn off your email notifications and only look at email during dedicated email time. ONWARD!

Daily habit that contributes to success

Listen to your mood -- Jennifer gives herself the flexibility to do her work when it's going to be done best.

Could have ruined your business – but now – an invaluable learning experience

Jennifer was working on her podcast full time when her husband lost his job -- and Jennifer tells the whole story here.

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"All business owners need to master prioritization."

Most influential lesson learned from a mentor

"You're not going to please everyone -- focus on your most important customers."  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

What systems would you go back and put into place sooner?

I would have hired a professional audio engineer sooner.

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. Just start
  2. You will figure it out

How best to connect with Jennifer:

Oct 18, 2016

J V Crum III helps established entrepreneurs create a Big Impact and Big Profits by growing businesses that make a difference in the world. J V is a speaker, coach, Huffington Post Columnist, and #1 best-selling author of “Conscious Millionaire: Grow Your Business by Making a Difference.” J V hosts the top-ranked “Conscious Millionaire Show & Podcast.” He is the Founder CEO of ConsciousMillionaire.com, a global coaching and entrepreneur training business.

Secret – timesaving technique

JV uses his formula for creating wealth -- use conscious focused action. ONWARD!

Daily habit that contributes to success

Plan your day based on what you want to achieve -- JV has no more than three priorities in a day.

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"Get clear on what your destiny is."

Most influential lesson learned from a mentor

"Every second counts -- so do the things that count."  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

What systems would you go back and put into place sooner?

I would have had great marketing, sales, and distribution systems.

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. Get out there and make sales
  2. Survey as quickly as possible

How best to connect with JV:

Oct 17, 2016

Lt. Col. Rob Waldman “Waldo” -- was his call sign -- he’s the author of the New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller “Never Fly Solo.” A graduate of the Air Force Academy, Waldo is a decorated combat fighter pilot and an expert in helping leaders and organizations accelerate performance in changing environments. Waldo overcame massive claustrophobia and a fear of heights to become a fighter pilot and believes that the key to building a culture of trust lies with your wingmen the men and women in your life who help you to overcome obstacles, adapt to change, and achieve success. In business and life, you should never fly solo! Waldo is also the founder and President of The Wingman Foundation, a 501(c)(3) whose mission is to build funds and awareness for soldiers, veterans, and their families in need. Waldo is an inductee into the professional Speakers Hall of Fame and his clients include Marriott, Hewlett-Packard, UPS, and Verizon. He’s been featured on Fox & Friends, CNN, MSNBC, Inc. Magazine and The Harvard Business Review.

How do you define success?

Success is contentment and peace with the thought of putting in the work.

What strategy do you use to combat fear?

Waldo puts in the work -- and Waldo tells the reasons why here.  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

How can business owners reach that elusive next level?

  1. Get a group of like-minded people together
  2. Set a time to hang out formally and informally
  3. Tap into what defines your success
  4. Don't be afraid to ask for help
  5. Find ways to serve

How best to connect with Waldo:

Oct 14, 2016

Dr. John Johnson is president and CEO of Edgeworth Economics, a professional economist, expert witness, internationally renowned speaker, and author of EVERYDATA: The Misinformation Hidden in the Little Data You Consume Everyday. Dr. Johnson has helped some of the world’s largest companies understand how to interpret data and is known internationally for his ability to explain highly sophisticated concepts in a simple, straightforward manner, helping his audiences become more confident and discerning consumers of data and make better decisions in their professional and personal lives.

Secret – timesaving technique

John starts his day by working out -- find your time to step away and think. ONWARD!

Daily habit that contributes to success

Use lists to keep track of what you need to do -- John uses pen and paper to keep his lists.

Could have ruined your business – but now – an invaluable learning experience

John and his team had to pay an employee's salary when she was diagnosed with cancer -- and John tells the whole story here.

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"Impatience and diplomacy."

Most influential lesson learned from a mentor

"I learned many skills like how to lead a group from my dad."  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

What systems would you go back and put into place sooner?

I would have had brought IT systems in-house sooner than I did.

What one strategy or “recipe” would compound into big wins for business owners?

Focus -- and use the EOS (entrepreneurial operating system) discussed earlier in this episode.

How to exceed expectations and add the most value?

An individual would think harder and realize that success comes from preparation and hard work.

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. Make sure you set very clear goals for yourself and your business
  2. Take chances
  3. Go for it with incredible passion and drive and refuse to take no for an answer

How best to connect with John:

Oct 13, 2016

Mark Winters is the co-author of the brilliant book, Rocket Fuel — the one essential combination that will get you more of what you want from your business. He has been an entrepreneur since the age of 28, after catching the bug during business school at the University of Chicago. He's started / bought / sold / or shut down 10 different companies. A recent venture, as a Founder and CEO, had a successful exit yielding a 100x cash return in less than three years. Mark’s passion is helping entrepreneurs get unstuck so they can pursue their freedom. Mark’s talent for introducing just the right combination of perspective and process sparks teams to start moving, move faster, or begin moving in the proper direction. Mark spends most of his time directly engaged with entrepreneurial leadership teams as a Certified EOS Implementer helping them implement EOS in their own companies. He's delivered over 300 full-day EOS workshops with companies from around the United States.

Secret – timesaving technique

Mark uses time blocking -- divide your time into free days (no business at all), focus days (primary business activity), and buffer days (preparing/practice). ONWARD!

Daily habit that contributes to success

Make it a point to take care of your body -- Mark does something physical every day.

Could have ruined your business – but now – an invaluable learning experience

Mark got a cease and desist letter from a competitor -- and Mark tells the whole story here.

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"Clarity -- clarity about now -- clarity about the predicted future -- and clarity of vision."

Most influential lesson learned from a mentor

"You need to get an assistant."  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

What systems would you go back and put into place sooner?

I would have put in better financial systems -- it's easy to fly by for a while -- and it's suddenly too late.

What one strategy or “recipe” would compound into big wins for business owners?

Focus -- and use the EOS (entrepreneurial operating system) discussed in this episode.

How to exceed expectations and add the most value?

An individual would be a leader and a manager and would also be accountable.

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. Understand your unique ability -- and recognize what you're not great at
  2. Build a unique ability team
  3. Have a combination of visionary and integrator
  4. Be crystal clear on what you're trying to achieve
  5. Implement your EOS

How best to connect with Mark:

Oct 12, 2016

Jeff Kleid is the author of “Networking with the Cards You Are Dealt”, and also a speaker, business strategist and consultant. His expertise in creating a best in class sales and customer service teams started back in his days working as a tipped valet for Disneyland hotel, where he could learn from people like Michael Eisner, former CEO of The Walt Disney Company. Jeff’s genuine approach to helping others has afforded him the opportunity to grow, build, and ultimately sell his shares in the same company where he started out as a commissioned salesperson.

Secret – timesaving technique

Jeff looks at his next day at the end of each night -- review your schedule before heading to bed. ONWARD!

Daily habit that contributes to success

Focus on the day at hand -- Jeff is persistent and focused.

Could have ruined your business – but now – an invaluable learning experience

Jeff went all in growing a business -- all of their potential clients pulled out last minute -- and Jeff tells the whole story here.

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"You have to be a great listener."

Most influential lesson learned from a mentor

"Some people manage as managers and some people manage as leaders."  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. Build relationships with people at the same level as you -- and don't look past those people
  2. Don't just call people when you need them -- stay engaged with them

How best to connect with Jeff:

Oct 11, 2016

Linda McMahon is the co-founder and chief executive officer of Women’s Leadership LIVE. Her company uses live events and ongoing mentorships to educate and inspire women to launch and expand their own businesses, advance their careers toward executive roles, and pursue opportunities for leadership in public service. Linda is also a co-founder and former chief executive officer of WWE — on the New York Stock Exchange as WWE. She stepped down as CEO in 2009 to run for the U.S. Senate and was the Republican nominee to represent the people of Connecticut in 2010 and 2012. As CEO, Linda helped grow WWE from a modest, 13-person operation to a publicly traded global enterprise with more than 800 employees in offices worldwide. Linda has been widely recognized as one of the country’s top female executives and for her numerous philanthropic contributions including the company's “Get R.E.A.L.” educational and literacy programs and The Make-A-Wish Foundation recognized WWE as a top wish granter.

Secret – timesaving technique

Linda keeps track of what she needs to get done with lists -- but you have to be nimble enough to react when an opportunity knocks on your door. ONWARD!

Daily habit that contributes to success

Start your day in a way that gets you going -- Linda works in the morning with a personal trainer 4-5 times a week.

Could have ruined your business – but now – an invaluable learning experience

Linda had to declare bankruptcy -- and Linda tells the whole story here.

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"You must not be arrogant and not be willing to shore up your weaknesses."

Most influential lesson learned from a mentor

"Come to work every day as if it's your first day on the job."  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

What systems would you go back and put into place sooner?

I would retarget marketing when the marketplace is shifting.

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. You have to be passionate about your business
  2. You need a good business model
  3. Always build a cash reserve

How best to connect with Linda:

Oct 10, 2016

In 1985, Mitch co-founded Timeslips Corp, which grew to become the largest time tracking software company in the world. In 1994, Timeslips was sold to Sage. While at Sage, Mitch went on to run all of Sage U.S. as Chief Operating Officer, a division with over 300 people. Later, Mitch joined Chet Holmes as President of Chet Holmes, International. Soon thereafter Mitch and Chet, along with Tony Robbins, created Business Breakthroughs International, a company serving thousands of businesses a year with coaching, consulting, and training services. Mitch was the President and CEO for four years. After the untimely death of Chet, Mitch left Business Breakthroughs to help CEOs build their own “Invisible Organization” using the principles outlined in this powerful book.

Secret – timesaving technique

Mitch starts every day by figuring out who he can help today -- and ends every day by figuring out what he wants to do tomorrow. ONWARD!

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"Nobody fails until they voluntarily quit."

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. Figure out what you did in the past that had the biggest impact
  2. Sell that to others

How best to connect with Mitch:

Oct 7, 2016

Daven Michaels is the CEO of 1-2-3 Employee and has made a career of living the American Dream. Starting his entrepreneurial career at age 15, Daven never looked back. Daven has turned multiple passions into prosperous businesses and careers. He has been a bestselling music and television producer, author, speaker and successful entrepreneur. Daven has helped thousands of small business owners transform their businesses by showing them how to play ball with the big corporations and beat them at their own game. Daven’s new book “Outsource Smart” has propelled him to the top of the bestseller lists. New York Times bestseller, Los Angeles Times bestseller & Amazon #1 bestseller, Daven has become an advocate for the small business owner and has appeared on numerous radio and TV shows globally.

Secret – timesaving technique

Daven uses Google Voice -- use this platform to send text messages with greater efficiency than with a phone. ONWARD!

Daily habit that contributes to success

If you have to stop and switch gears, it kills your productivity -- Daven blocks out certain hours where no one can reach him.

Could have ruined your business – but now – an invaluable learning experience

Daven brought in a hot shot sales VIP -- it was a disaster -- and Daven tells the whole story here.

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"Get out of your own way."

Most influential lesson learned from a mentor

Write down what you learn from your mentors.  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. Find a mentor
  2. Before you build a product or service -- run a test
  3. Just go for it and ignore the voice in your head

How best to connect with Daven:

Oct 6, 2016

David Burkus is passionate about leadership, innovation, and strategy. He has made it his purpose to facilitate the transfer of good ideas. Toward that end, David is focused on filling the gap between what science knows -- and -- what we most often do. He is the author of “The Myths of Creativity: The Truth About How Innovative Companies Generate Great Ideas” and he writes regularly for Harvard Business Review and INC. Magazine -- and -- is the host of the brilliant podcast, Radio Free Leader, where he shares insights on leadership, innovation, and strategy. When David is not speaking, writing, or podcasting, he’s in the classroom serving as an associate professor of management at Oral Roberts University.

Secret – timesaving technique

David believes there isn't time management -- but there are priorities -- say no to the things you don't want to do. ONWARD!

Daily habit that contributes to success

Don't put everything on one device -- David keeps his work things on his phone and his "fun" things on his iPad -- and he only uses the one he's supposed to be using at the proper time.

Could have ruined your business – but now – an invaluable learning experience

David spent 12 hours pretending he was at a level he hadn't reached yet -- and David tells the whole story here.

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"Humble yourself and realize that it's up to you to figure out what customers want."

Most influential lesson learned from a mentor

"Give yourself a longer runway."  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

What systems would you go back and put into place sooner?

I would have had a better system for connecting with listeners and readers.

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. Figure out what to copy

How best to connect with David:

Oct 5, 2016

Terry Brock is someone who solves problems. He works with organizations to build relationships with customers, suppliers, employees and other stakeholders. His Relationship Marketing emphasis shows how to leverage the power of technologies like video, social media and other tools, to achieve bottom-line results. When Skype needed a new Chief Enterprise Blogger to help with their social media and blogging, they hired Terry. When AT&T needed a new Editor-in-Chief for their award-winning and biggest blog, they hired Terry. He worked with a team of over 100 geniuses to help generate over $2 Billion in sales during his tenure. He’s the co-author of the bestselling book, “Klout Matters”, and a syndicated columnist.

Secret – timesaving technique

Terry uses Google Spreadsheets to track the tasks that he needs to complete -- be willing to do what others won't. ONWARD!

Daily habit that contributes to success

Study, exercise, and meditate -- Terry does daily SEM.

Could have ruined your business – but now – an invaluable learning experience

Terry got a D in accounting when he went back for his MBA -- and Terry tells the whole story here.

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"Learn how to learn fast."

Most influential lesson learned from a mentor

"Find out what everyone else is doing and do something different."  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

What systems would you go back and put into place sooner?

I would have kept track of people more -- use a CRM.

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. Listen to others
  2. Get out there and produce

How best to connect with Terry:

Oct 4, 2016

Dr. Steve Fawkes is an internationally recognized expert on energy efficiency with over 30 years experience including delivering large energy management programs, co-founding two energy service companies, implementing innovative energy services deals, and advising governments. His roles include: Senior Adviser to the Investor Confidence Project, Independent member of the Investment Committee of the London Energy Efficiency Fund, Trustee of the National Energy Foundation and advising companies, cities, and investors on energy efficiency programs. He has published extensively on energy efficiency including more than 250 papers and articles, three books and a regular blog: www.onlyelevenpercent.com and makes presentations globally.

Secret – timesaving technique

Steve picks at most three things to get done each day -- a lesson he learned from Monty Python's John Cleese. ONWARD!

Daily habit that contributes to success

The first step is the hardest -- Steve believes in just getting on with it.

Could have ruined your business – but now – an invaluable learning experience

Steve saw his market evaporate -- and Steve tells the whole story here.

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"Use your listening skills to determine a course of action."

Most influential lesson learned from a mentor

"Don't react -- stop and think before you respond."  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

What systems would you go back and put into place sooner?

I would have had developed systems for all products.

What one strategy or “recipe” would compound into big wins for business owners?

Work on the business -- not in the business.

How to exceed expectations and add the most value?

An individual would go out of their way to learn about the business.

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. Think about what the purpose of the business is
  2. Systems -- work on the business -- not in the business
  3. Put your fears aside and get on with it

How best to connect with Steve:

Oct 3, 2016

Steve Fry is the co-founder of three companies over the past 19 years under the umbrella of Spindustry...Spindustry Digital, a digital marketing agency (in 2013 named the top place to work in Iowa by the Des Moines Register... Spindustry Staffing, a professional services staffing company...and Spindustry Training, an IT training center. The Spindustry team achieved both Inc. 500 and Inc. 5000 recognition several times for these businesses and a variety of other "Bests" in their industry.

Why did you write your book?

Steve wanted to take 20+ years of experience and put it on the table.

What is the most critical skill for getting a book done?

  1. Find your area of expertise
  2. Figure out how to organize your thoughts into something that's meaningful
  3. Commit to getting it done

How do you define success?

Success is having the opportunity to work on things you love to do.

What strategy do you use to combat fear?

Steve believes in finding people who love to do what you fear -- and Steve tells the reasons why here.

What makes as "A player" an "A player"?

An "A player" is someone who -- first and foremost -- has a great attitude.  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

How can we become better mentors?

  1. Be there and be supportive
  2. Set a good example -- don't ask people to do things you wouldn't be willing to do yourself
  3. Offer constructive ideas in a respectful way

How can we build an audience?

  1. Have breakfast clubs -- get together with people of common interests
  2. Invite business leaders into your business and buy them lunch

How do you attract good employees?

  1. Have a strong job description
  2. Have the mindset that recruiting has to be done all the time
  3. Use Facebook targeting
  4. Target your targets spouses
  5. Use video to showcase jobs
  6. Create an online diary with employee promotion of jobs
  7. Drive traffic to the position through PPC and other forms of ads

How best to connect with Steve:

 

Sep 30, 2016

Billee Howard is the Founder & CEO of Brandthropologie, an artist collective that helps place brands at the epicenter of culture and commerce. Billee is also the author of “We-Commerce” a book designed to help companies and leaders embrace the principles of the collaborative economy in ways that improve their bottom line.

What do you do in the first 60 minutes of your day?

Billee begins her day by looking at what's going on in the world -- spot trends and apply them into your business. ONWARD!

Favorite quote or lesson?

"If you're not the lead dog, the view never changes."

How do you define success?

Success is really knowing that you've pushed yourself to be the best you can be at any moment.

What strategy do you use to combat fear?

Billee looks at others and says "if they can do it -- I can do it" -- and Billee tells the reasons why here.

What makes as "A player" an "A player"?

An "A player" is someone who can constantly evolve and find new and exciting ways to develop their own skills.  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success” 

How can we become better mentors?

  1. Don't try to make your mentees a carbon of you
  2. Allow yourself to be mentored by people you wouldn't think of as mentors

How can we build an audience?

  1. Build a collaborative culture inside your organization
  2. Understand how you are going to meet the needs of consumers
  3. Put communications at the beginning of a supply chain of invention instead of at the end

How can business owners reach that elusive next level?

  1. Look at how you can change up your routine and shed what's holding you back
  2. Take yourself out of your comfort zone and look at how to expand your offering
  3. Embrace failure as a tool to drive yourself towards new success

How best to connect with Billee:

Sep 29, 2016

Paul Maskill invested in his first TGA franchise in 2011, combining his business experience with passion for sports. TGA makes golf and tennis more accessible to students ages 3 to 15 through on-campus after school programs, summer camps, parent / child events and more. Over the last 4.5 years, Paul has grown his business to four franchises, impacting thousands of kids each year. At the end of 2015, Paul sold his four franchises for over 6x his initial investment and 3x his net profit. Paul then accepted a position with the franchisor to lead business development and helps current franchise owners to help build their businesses through people, processes, and systems so the business thrives without relying on the owner.

Secret – timesaving technique

Paul time blocks his morning -- have a plan and stay organized. ONWARD!

Daily habit that contributes to success

Stay organized -- Paul believes in documenting everything you can in your business.

Could have ruined your business – but now – an invaluable learning experience

Paul reached a breaking point where he couldn't do it all anymore -- and Paul tells the whole story here.

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"Organization and hard work."

Most influential lesson learned from a mentor

"Show up every day and work hard."  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

What systems would you go back and put into place sooner?

I would have been proactive with my schedule and got my must-do things done by noon.

What one strategy or “recipe” would compound into big wins for business owners?

Do the little things and big things will happen.

How to exceed expectations and add the most value?

An individual would take initiative.

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. Start with the end in mind and stay consistent
  2. Just get started and make mistakes
  3. Trust your staff until they give you a reason not to

How best to connect with Paul:

Sep 28, 2016

Stephen is the CEO of Predictive ROI and the host of the Onward Nation podcast. He is the author of two bestselling books, speaker, trainer, and his digital marketing insights have been featured in SUCCESS, Entrepreneur, The Washington Post, Forbes, Inc. Magazine, and other media.

Good Morning Onward Nation…I’m Stephen Woessner. And I am really really excited for today’s solocast because — it is going to be rock solid awesome!

One of the reasons that I am so excited is because I am returning to full teaching mode this morning with a powerful lesson about building your platform — more importantly — some practical and tactical steps about building a nation of what Kevin Kelly describes as “True Fans” who will help you mobilize and move your business onward to that next level.

True fans of you — true fans of your message — true fans of your business.

Fans who will support you — because — of the sacred bond you have built with them.

A bond that was built upon — and continues to be built upon — the foundation of the value you created, you delivered, and the value you shared with them on a consistent basis.

Whether you do that every day — every week — no matter what the schedule — no matter what the rhythm — the fact that you are consistent is what is important.

This is going to be such an awesome solocast — and I am delighted you are here with me — your time and attention mean so very much to me.

But before we dive deep into today’s lesson…I have a very important favor to ask. In fact, this is the first time I have ever asked this favor within one of my solocasts.

So, if you could do this — please know — it would mean a lot to me.

I’d be grateful — and would really appreciate it — if you would go to iTunes and give Onward Nation a rating and then write a review for our podcast. I respect your time so I wanted to make this as efficient as possible to find us in iTunes…so my team created a special link to save you time.

So if you go to www.onwardnation.com/itc you will go directly to our channel within iTunes.

Okay, why am I asking for this favor?

Last week, I was excited to share with you how Onward Nation is now listened to in 102 countries — and — that we had surpassed the milestone of 50,000 downloads. WOW — still a bit unbelievable — not going to lie — need to pinch myself to realize that yes, this is indeed our reality.

And I credited our growth to our incredible guests and all of the wonderful feedback we have received from you, Onward Nation — all of your comments on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, — and — all of your emails. Thank you!

But in celebrating these amazing milestones — I made a mistake!

I forgot to mention a critical type of feedback that helps us reach more and more people with each one we receive…and that’s…all of the ratings and reviews we receive inside iTunes.

With each rating and review we receive, Onward Nation…you help us increase our rankings within iTunes — and — higher rankings means more people will see us in their search results — and potentially they will be seeing us for the very first time.

Each and every review helps more and more people in more countries to hear the wisdom and expertise shared by our guests each day.

So, if you haven’t already given us a star rating and written a review — it would really mean a lot to me if you did.

It’s simple to do. It doesn’t take much time.

Again, just go to www.onwardnation.com/itc — or — if you are listening on your phone — you can give us a rating and write a review from within your podcast app on your phone.

We’ve occasionally received feedback that leaving ratings can be a confusing process, so here are the steps in detail:

First, after going to the www.onwardnation.com/itc link, please click the blue button that “View in iTunes.”

view-in-itunes

Next, click on the link titled “Ratings and Reviews.”

click-ratings-and-reviews

Next, click on “Write a Review.”

click-write-review

If you are not signed into iTunes, you will be asked to sign in. If you are already signed into iTunes, it is likely that you will skip this step.

enter-password

Finally, you will be able to leave a review. Don’t forget the star rating!

write-review

So thank you, Onward Nation — and please know — I greatly appreciate all of your help, support, encouragement, and feedback — you make me and my team better every day — and — it is an honor to be here with you again this morning.

With that said…let’s get dialed in and ready for this week’s lesson.

You ready? Because I’m so totally ready — I’m going to bring the thunder this morning, Onward Nation…YES!

I spent quite a bit of time working through and preparing what I wanted to share with you today. Such an important lesson. How one of the vital priorities in your business should be to build a nation of true fans — to develop a sense of community, collaboration, and profitability around the purpose of your business.

Let’s begin by breaking the phrase “Build a nation of true fans” into its three core components.

First — let’s tackle the word, “Build.” How would you “build” a nation of true fans. Whether that’s a…

  • Podcast
  • Blog
  • YouTube channel
  • Instagram stories

The platform from a tech perspective is irrelevant — any or all of the above — will serve your purpose of “building” a nation of true fans. The tech behind it all is relatively easy. Is there a learning curve? Sure.

Will you feel at times like you are trying to fly the space shuttle with so many knobs and buttons to push? Sure. How does Facebook Live work? What time of day should I create a story on Instagram? What kind of camera and mic are best if I want to be a serious YouTuber?

All of these are tech questions — and within an afternoon with your best friend Google — you can solve those problems and find the answers as long as you don’t let the fear of the unknown become paralyzing to you.

So let’s shift our focus away from the tech — and instead — focus on the value you will be providing through those channels. What’s your story — how will you serve your audience — how will you make what you are doing so valuable to their business or life, that they actually consider you to be indispensable. That you become so consistent in the help, advice, recommendations, and over value that you are providing on a consistent basis — that you BUILD deposits in their emotional bank account. They begin to trust you — they begin to like you — and then because of them liking you and trusting you…they move even closer to you by truly KNOWING you.

So, your first step in building your nation of true fans has nothing to do with the actual content delivery platform and has everything to do with the value of what you will be delivering — because your nation of true fans is built on VALUE. And if you get that right — the actual platform — or your conduit through which you share your value — will fall into place — and it will feel less stressful because the value you were called — put on this Earth to deliver — will then be in the driver’s seat. You, Onward Nation — will become unstoppable.

Now let’s shift our attention toward the word “Nation” and break that down. And I want to address to make sure we address this because we live in a world where bigger lists, bigger subscribers, massive downloads, huge customer lists, etc. etc. etc. is what attracts headlines and massive attention.

I’m here to share with you the reality…you don’t need an email list of 100,000 people…you don’t need to have a podcast that gets a million downloads a month…you don’t need to have a customer list with 20,000 prospects on it.

Nope. You don’t.

That’s not your Nation.

What you need — realistically — depending on the size of your business is somewhere between 100 to 1,000 high-qualified prospects.

1000

That’s it…100 to 1,000 of the very best prospects who precisely match your client avatar — in fact — your knowledge with some of these people is so deep that you can boldly claim them as your Dream 50 prospects.

If you need a refresher on why your Dream 50 matters — please go back to Episode 308 of Onward Nation — and I map it all out — how to figure out who your Dream 50 is — and — how to romance your Dream 50 so they understand how important they are to you. Again, that was in Episode 308.

To take this point deeper — I want to share a very tangible example of a company that grew from zero to become a multi-billion a year company — yes — billion — with a capital B.

My mentor, Darren Hardy, former publisher of SUCCESS Magazine…decided to interview my friend Cody Foster, co-founder of Advisors Excel and to share the interview on the March 2014 edition of the SUCCESS CD that rides along with the magazine.

success

You may remember Cody Foster, and the wisdom he shared, as my guest on Episode 81 of Onward Nation.

During the interview with Darren, Cody shared several personal stories of very humble beginnings — and how those stories — helped shaped the kind of company Advisors Excel has become.

A company packed full — wall to wall — of incredible people — a team whose sole focus is to deliver more and more value every day to the financial advisors around the country they are there to serve. And Advisors Excel team does it masterfully well. They have BUILT their platform — a platform that is indeed built on a solid foundation of value.

But…did they build this platform by trying to serve the 60,000 financial advisors located in the state of Florida alone? No. How about all of the financial advisors up and down the west coast?

Nope.

Did they focus on spending large amounts of advertising dollars trying to reach everyone they could with their message of value, value, value?

Nope. Strike three.

Instead…what they did focus on was carefully, meticulously selecting, 1,000 of the very best financial advisors who they wanted to earn the opportunity to serve. Yes, Onward Nation, Cody shared with Darren that they built a list of 1,000 financial advisors — just 1,000 — and then they went to work to deliver more value than another other insurance marketing organization in the industry to the 1,000 advisors they wanted to work with.

The 1,000 advisors became their Nation…and advisors outside of the Nation didn’t exist. Advisors Excel was solely focused on being the best they could be for this small group of prospects.

The result outcome? Well, in year six of the business…they reached over $4 billion in revenue. $4 billion, Onward Nation.

When they are the right prospects — you don’t need 10,000…you actually only need a small number to make your business amazingly successful and profitable. 1,000 people — who you can love on — who you can support — who you can add value to — who then in turn are excited to do for you some of what you already shared with them.

So now, let’s take this number — 1,000 — deeper — because it is a magical number that we all ought to really focus on in our businesses.

Kevin Kelly was the first person — at least I think he was the first person — who popularized the theory — the notion — the strategy that if a business created a base of customers who were more like fans — 1,000 True Fans in fact — then that business could become sustainable and profitable by simply focusing on the needs of its true fans.

And here is a link to Kevin Kelly’s blog post as well as the long tail curve he created to illustrate the 1,000 true fans strategy.

long-tail-curve

Kelly describes — or defines — “True Fans” as customers who will help you mobilize and move your business onward to that next level. They are true fans of you — true fans of your message — true fans of your business.

Fans who will support you — because — of the sacred bond you have built with them.

A bond that was built upon — and continues to be built upon — the foundation of the value you create, you deliver, and the value you share with them on a consistent basis.

As I mentioned at the onset of this solocast.

Whether you do that every day — every week — no matter what the schedule — no matter what the rhythm — the fact that you are consistent is what is important.

According to Kevin, “A True Fan” is defined as someone who will purchase anything and everything you produce. They will drive 200 miles to visit your location.

They will buy the super deluxe version of your product even though they already own the standard version, too.

They have a Google Alert set for your name.

They have bookmarked your website.

They come to your product announcements — or — ribbon cutting ceremonies for a new office location.

They come to your book signings and ask for you to sign their copy.

They cannot wait for your next webinar — your next podcast episode — your next event — your next release of whatever.

And the best way to increase sales for your company is to connect with your True Fans directly…so you need to have a platform built on value…see? We keep coming back to that foundational truth.

Onward Nation, 1,000 true fans is a very reasonable number. As Kevin explains in his brilliant blog post… “if you added one fan a day, it would take only three years. True Fanship is doable. Pleasing a True Fan is pleasurable, and invigorating.”

The key challenge is that you have to maintain direct contact with your 1,000 True Fans. And you do that through building your platform — delivering value — and making sure you are using the right conduit so it reaches your 1,000 true fans on a consistent basis.

Again…it doesn’t matter if you use a podcast, blog, robust LNKD profile and LNKD publishing, long form posts on Medium, Instagram stories, Facebook Live, and the list goes on.

What’s important to identify is not the platform you are most comfortable — but — the platform your fans use the most — what is the best conduit to them?

For me — it’s this podcast, my LinkedIn account, email campaigns, and webinars.

But there is also another piece to True Fans…and that are the concentric circles of “Lesser Fans.”

These folks will not purchase everything you produce, and may not seek out direct contact, but they will buy much of what you produce.

The processes you develop to feed your True Fans will also nurture Lesser Fans. As you build your nation of True Fans, you will also add many more Lesser Fans.

And as you are building…don’t avoid…don’t miss the opportunity to go deep…to develop intimacy with your audience…with your true fans.

Onward Nation…that is one of the reasons I ask for feedback in every solocast. My team and I legitimately want to get better — but — I also want to hear from you — to get to know you — to learn from you — and to deliver even more value so Onward Nation becomes — and hopefully remains — your most favorite podcast.

Okay…with that said…and before we go…I want to make one final connection between today’s lesson and the favor that I asked you to do for me at the onset of our discussion today.

I know that I have absolutely no permission to make an ask of your time — unless — I have consistently delivered value.

And — even if I have consistently delivered value — I must be considerate in the favors I ask for — no one wants to spend time with the takers — the people who just ask, ask, ask, and never ever give.

So, Onward Nation — I am using today’s solocast as a way to ask for a legitimate favor — and — to give you a recipe for how you can do the same to build you own nation of true fans — and when you do — your nation — just like Onward Nation has become this amazing, awesome, wonderful, beautiful incredible platform of people who are so generous with your feedback and help guide your business in the exact direction it needs to go in order to deliver even more value to what it is they need.

So build your own platform for your business — or if you already have one — think about Kevin Kelly’s lesson — and ask yourself how you can add even more and more value to your the people already in your community — and build your nation of true fans.

Because when you do — your business, your team, your life will move onward to a completely new level.

So with that…I want to say thank you again for taking the time to be here with me today. It is an honor to have you here — thank you for tuning in — I am delighted you chose this episode to be what you listen to, study, and take with you on your morning run, or maybe Onward Nation has become part of your daily commute, or in some other way has become part of your morning routine.

I want you to know how much I appreciate you sharing some of your invaluable 86,400 seconds you have in your day with me and the strategies we learn and share each day from today’s top business owners.

And please continue to let me know what you think of Onward Nation…good or bad…I always want your feedback.

We will be back tomorrow with an incredible encore interview with Paul Maskill — you will not want to miss Paul’s philosophy when he encourages you to, “Go ahead — make mistakes on purpose,” Onward Nation. The conversation with Paul is packed full of discussions regarding systems — and more specifically — how he used systems to sell his company for 6 times what he bought it for and 4 times the profit. This systems discussion will help you create financial leverage within your business.

Until then, onward with gusto!

Sep 27, 2016

Gina Pellegrini is the owner of Pellegrini Team Consulting -- a Minneapolis-based firm specializing in leadership training, staff development, and practice management. Gina helps business teams streamline their systems, increase productivity, strengthen accountability, and improve communication. With the help of Gina and her team, business owners become better leaders, and employees get more involved in their company’s vision, decision-making, and growth.

Secret – timesaving technique

Gina created an "ideal week" with "buffer days" and "focus days" -- schedule your week out with the right amount of each. ONWARD!

Daily habit that contributes to success

Delegation -- Gina delegates work to her team so that she can focus on what she needs to focus on.

Could have ruined your business – but now – an invaluable learning experience

Gina's bookkeeper recommended closing the doors -- and Gina tells the whole story here.

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"Hire the right team members and let them do what they were hired to do."

Most influential lesson learned from a mentor

"Be direct -- and understand through someone else's eyes."  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

What systems would you go back and put into place sooner?

I would have grown my practice quicker if I had put time management systems in sooner.

What one strategy or “recipe” would compound into big wins for business owners?

Accountability -- if there's no accountability -- it slides by.

How to exceed expectations and add the most value?

An individual would have the right attitude -- you can teach people anything -- if they have the right attitude.

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. Hire someone as soon as possible
  2. Stay engaged with your employees
  3. Have them build their "ideal week"

How best to connect with Gina:

Sep 26, 2016

Dan Lok is the world’s most cherished entrepreneur, business mentor, and internet marketing authority, with an inspirational story that resonates around the globe. “The Dan Lok” brand is a global movement with one mission: To empower 1,000,000 entrepreneurs to become successful in life and in business. With nearly 1,500 members, Dan operates one of the largest entrepreneurial community in Canada – Vancouver Entrepreneurs Group. Dan’s recently launched his YouTube Channel already has nearly 300,000 views, expanding his reach to every corner of the globe.

Secret – timesaving technique

Dan designed his environment to fit his lifestyle -- your environment is more powerful than your willpower. ONWARD!

Daily habit that contributes to success

Attitude or gratitude -- Dan listens to specific audios every morning and focuses on what he's grateful for every morning.

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"Without the right mindset -- the best skill set in the world won't help you."

Most influential lesson learned from a mentor

"You have to learn to be comfortable with success."  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success” 

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. Get a mentor -- join a mastermind group -- seek help from others
  2. Look at yourself in the mirror and reflect

How best to connect with Dan:

Sep 23, 2016

Judy Robinett is a business thought leader who has been profiled in The Street, Vogue, CBS, NBC, Forbes, The Washington Post and Bloomberg Businessweek as a sterling example of the new breed of super-connectors who use their experience and networks to accelerate growth and enhance profitability. She gives speeches worldwide on business strategy and high-end strategic networking to specific outcomes. Judy has served as the CEO of both public and private companies and in management positions at Fortune 500 companies. She has been on the advisory boards of several prominent venture capital firms and is the author of “How to Be a Power Connector: The 5-50-150 Rule”, which ranked #1 of The Top Ten Business Books of 2014 by Inc.com.

Secret – timesaving technique

Judy utilizes the PADD strategy when she's on a phone call -- write down the purpose, action, details, and deadline to keep you focused during important conversations. ONWARD!

Daily habit that contributes to success

Have affirmations to help you when times are tough -- Judy tells herself she is perfect for what she needs to do.

Could have ruined your business – but now – an invaluable learning experience

Judy was broke and had to pay off debt -- and Judy tells the whole story here.

Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful

"It's absolutely critical to have metrics to know your numbers inside and out."

Most influential lesson learned from a mentor

"They can break you -- but they can't kill you."  

Final Round – “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”

What systems would you go back and put into place sooner?

I would have been smarter on sales and figured out my ideal customer.

What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?

  1. Get an advisory board
  2. Don't listen to the naysayers

How best to connect with Judy:

Resources:

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