Ken Coleman – Focus On The 5

"40% of millionaires are 1st generation immigrants." - Ken Coleman

I met Ken through a series of events and I am so thankful to connect with him. He has challenged my thinking and I’m relatively sure he will yours as well. I’m really interested in finding out if you are a 5% er. Leave a comment below or shoot me an email to [email protected] I know you are probably sick of hearing me say this, but you might want to take some notes… Of course, you don’t have to. Taking notes is voluntary… but so is success. Remember, you don’t have to be all fancy about it and write your notes in a bound leather journal. Just grab a brown paper bag and some blue crayons and let’s go to work.

Things Ken And I Talked About

  • Most people go right because most people go right.
  • Adversity creates tenacity.
  • DNA determines much more than hair color, height, etc.
  • Founders of companies are generally 5%ers.
  • CEOs are generally 30%ers.
  • Our country was born from 5%ers.
  • Learning what your two God-given talents are, being thankful and then letting God use them in service of others.

Ken's Billboard:
"Are you the best set of pliers?"

The Books We Talked About

As always: Click on the cover below to learn more or purchase through Amazon.

Focus On The Five – Ken Coleman

Where To Connect With Elizabeth

NEXT WEEK

Freaking out about taxes? You will want to join me next week when I have Elizabeth Hale, CPA on the podcast. Elizabeth specializes in helping small business owners and the self-employed increase their profitabilty while reducing their tax bill. Sounds good to me!!!

Until then, I wish you great SUCCESS! I’ve heard it’s VOLUNTARY…

Jonny Burgess

I love Jonny Burgess! Even if he did try to get me fired.  I first had Jonny on the SIV podcast back in 2014. He had just written and published his book You Can Too. The book details his start in the Voluntary Benefits arena and the challenges he had to overcome. Apparently, his kids wanted to eat every day…  More importantly, Jonny gave his readers a step-by-step outline on how to be successful too. Hence the name of the book.

I first had Jonny on the SIV podcast back in 2014. He had just written and published his book You Can Too. The book details his start in the Voluntary Benefits arena and the challenges he had to overcome. (Apparently, his kids wanted to eat every day… lol). More importantly, Jonny gave his readers a step-by-step outline on how to be successful too. Hence the name of the book.

How the nearly getting fired part works is that Jonny was, and still is, representing Aflac. In his book he talks extensively and exclusively of his work with Aflac. He went so far as to put a picture of the Aflac duck on the cover. He also received an endorsement from the Aflac President.

So far so good, right? Well…. here’s the thing. At the time I was a corporate employee of Aflac’s biggest competitor. I put a picture of Jonny’s book (with the duck) on the Success Is Voluntary website. My company lost its mind and threatened termination if I continued the SIV website and podcast. They believed I was “training competitors how to sell Voluntary Benefits.” I reminded them that Success Is Voluntary is carrier agnostic. They didn’t care. So as I wrote about in my blog article “I’m Back!” on January 1, 2018 I’m ashamed I caved. You can read the article here: https://successisvoluntary.com/im-back/

That’s all ancient history and I’m glad to no longer have to answer to Corporate America and work with shortsighted people.

Fast forward to around Thanksgiving of 2018. I came home to find that a book had been delivered. That’s not that unusual as I read a book a week. What was unusual is that I didn’t remember ordering a book. I hadn’t. It was a copy of Jonny’s new book: You Still Can Too. I had no idea he had written it. It was signed and contained a note that I was mentioned in the book! In his book, Jonny mentioned this very podcast and encouraged anyone in the VB arena to listen. Thank you Jonny for your kind words.

Things Jonny And I Talked About

  • He had no plan B when he started.
  • He had 8 kids and a mortgage payment of $5,000 per month, yet never missed a payment.
  • He is more excited about VB today than he has ever been.
  • You must make your sales presentation real simple, then lather, rinse, repeat.
  • His employer presentation lasts 4-5 minutes.
  • You must get the shelf space first and then build from there.
  • How to create a “milk run” of 200 clients.
  • Why you should borrow the prospect’s pen.
  • How to create urgency.
  • Why working with brokers is becoming critical.

Jonny’s Billboard: The tragedy is not that you aimed too high and missed. It’s that you aimed too low and hit.

The Books We Talked About

As always: Click on the cover below to learn more or purchase through Amazon.

Success Principles – Jack Canfield

When God Winks At You – Squire Rushnell

If it’s going to be, It’s up to me! – Robert Schuler

You Can Too – Jonny Burgess

You Still Can Too – Jonny Burgess

Where To Connect With Jonny

NEXT WEEK

Social Media Guru, Alex Lombard is going to drop some serious knowledge on the SIV Tribe!
Don’t you dare miss it!

Eric Hemati – Twins Separated at Birth

"We get out of life what we put into the lives of other people."

I first met Eric Hemati in early November of 2018 and knew immediately that we were kindred spirits. Since then we have probably spent 20-30 hours on the phone together. The more I talk to Eric, the more I realize that he is one of the “good guys” in our business. He does everything with excellence and integrity. Eric has spent 13 years building and growing his agency that has agents all across the United States. To accomplish this he does a great job of leveraging technology including a very innovative website for his agents to learn through.

As I’ve gotten to know Eric, I swear our experience, philosophies and leadership style are so closely aligned that I swear we must be twins separated at birth (and about 10 years.)

I know you are probably sick of hearing me say this, but you might want to take some notes… Of course, you don’t have to. Taking notes is voluntary… but so is success. Remember, you don’t have to be all fancy about it and write your notes in a bound leather journal. Just grab a brown paper bag and some blue crayons and let’s go to work.

Things Eric And I Talked About

  • He was expelled from seminary.
  • He started his career selling books door to door as a college intern
  • Adversity needs to be examined in perspective.
  • His passion is helping people live their best life.
  • Learning to ride in the current rather than fighting it.
  • The next 10 years are the “golden age” for Voluntary Benefits.
  • When you are having “one of those days” remember:
    • It’s not about you.
    • We tend to look at problems from the “me” perspective.
      • Why are they being mean to ME?
      • Why do bad things always happen to ME?
      • Why don’t people buy from ME?
  • The best way to get out of that funk is to make a positive impact on another person.

“The best advice I’ve ever received was to do what scares you.” – Eric Hemati

  • Be present
  • You only find your authentic voice after you know how to do something.
  • Courage doesn’t occur without fear.
  • If you saw someone talking to their dog like you talk to yourself, you would probably want to intervene and tell them not to treat their dog that poorly.
  • One of the biggest self-limiting beliefs is that we need to do something on our own. Lose the pride and ask for help!

Eric's Billboard
Love each other

The Books eric and i Talked About

As always: Click on the cover below to learn more or purchase through Amazon.

Sell Or Be Sold – Grant Cardone

Think and Grow Rich  – Napoleon Hill​

Where To Connect With Eric

NEXT WEEK

Join me again next week when I bring on Andy Neary. Andy is going to school us on creating mindshift by eliminating mindshit.

Until then, I wish you great SUCCESS! I’ve heard it’s VOLUNTARY…

Brad Lea – 4 Pillars of Training

"Training is something we do, not something we did." - Brad Lea

I first talked to Brad Lea 6 years ago when I reached out to him about a tweet he had posted. We spoke for nearly an hour and he explained his training technology platform, Light Speed VT, and how it was completely changing the way organizations deliver training results to their people. He was killing it then and his business has grown exponentially since.

I have continued to follow Brad via Twitter and recently Instagram. His posts are always incredibly positive and uplifting. The cool thing is that his posts are the real deal. I don’t know if you are aware of this, but what some supposed gurus post online, has nothing to do with their reality. It’s refreshing to see someone like Brad who actually lives out the values he espouses.   

If you decided to listen to this podcast today because you needed an attitude adjustment, you are in the right place! But know this, Brad is going to purposely try to make us a little uncomfortable. He believes that we need to seek out and embrace discomfort as it is the only way we grow. I know you are probably sick of hearing me say this, but you might want to take some notes… Of course, you don’t have to. Taking notes is voluntary… but so is success. Remember, you don’t have to be all fancy about it and write your notes in a bound leather journal. Just grab a brown paper bag and some blue crayons and let’s go to work.

Things Brad And I Talked About

  • He dropped out of school at 16 when
  • His dad kicked him out of the house.
  • His upcoming book The Hard Way.
  • The difference between “hard work” and “working hard.”
  • How he mastered the game of sales.
  • He became addicted to helping others learn sales and watching them have incredible success.

  • The four keys necessary for learning:
    • Great content
    • Repetition
    • Practice and role play
    • Accountability
  • With the right knowledge, success is guaranteed.
  • Confidence comes from competence and competence comes from practice.

"I took the scenic route. It’s been a longer journey than I thought. But, EVERY SINGLE DAY I GET: A little better. A little smarter. A little closer to my goal. As long as I’m breathing, I’m on my way." - Brad Lea

The Books Andy and i Talked About

As always: Click on the cover below to learn more or purchase through Amazon.

The Bible – God

Think and Grow Rich  – Napoleon Hill

Where To Connect With Andy

NEXT WEEK

Join me again next week when I bring on Author John Reid. I promise he is going to challenge your thought proccess around sales systems. At least he did mine!

Until then, I wish you great SUCCESS! I’ve heard it’s VOLUNTARY…

Eric Silverman – Returns

All we have to do is change everything.

I’ve known today’s guest Eric Silverman for a long time. When we had him on last time he sparked some controversy with some of his opinions and thoughts around where he thinks the Voluntary Benefits industry, or as he calls it enhanced benefits, is headed.

Well if you though his last appearance was controversial, you ain’t seen nothing yet!

I’ll be honest with you, I don’t agree with him on several things we talked about but I do admire, respect and am willing to be challenged by his positions and beliefs. How open are you to hearing things that might challenge your status quo? I never want to close off my thinking by digging into my position without understanding the other side of the argument.

As you listen to today’s podcast, my guess is that there will be somethings Eric talks about that might not sit quite right with you or even make you mad… And that’s great!

Eric would love to start a conversation with you and listen to your point of view.

During our interview I forgot to talk about his excellent book Breaking Through The Status Quo. That was completely my fault. (Sorry Eric!) I can’t recommend it enough!

Now SERIOUSLY get out blue crayons and brown paper bag to take some notes. I look forward to hearing your thoughts and facilitating a lively discussion around this interview.

Things Eric And I Talked About

  • Eric fully admits he is a recovering carrier rep
  • Insurance is a small industry.
  • We are in the people business.
  • You must know what is going on in the industry.
  • Bypassing the broker has killed the reputation of Voluntary Benefits.
  • Every employee must become a true consumer.

  • There here are only 4 types of medical brokers as it pertains to Voluntary Benefits.
    • Those who ignore VB.
    • Those who send it to the same carrier rep they always use.
    • Those who bring it in house by hiring a VB practice manager.
    • Those who outsource through a carrier agnostic boutique VB firm (like Eric’s.)
  • Eric thinks of himself as a supply chain manager for brokers.

"How can you claim that you are breaking through the status quo if you are treating Voluntary Benefits the same way you always have?" - Eric Silverman

The Books eric and i Talked About

As always: Click on the cover below to learn more or purchase through Amazon.

The CAP Equation – Joe Buzzello

Don’t Keep Me A Secret – Bill Cates

Where To Connect With Eric

NEXT WEEK

Join me again next week when I bring on Brad Lea. Brad is a guy I have been following on social media and the work he is doing with his company LightSpeed VT for at least 5 years. You are going to love his positivity and mindset.

Until then, I wish you great SUCCESS! I’ve heard it’s VOLUNTARY…

Wes Schaeffer – The Sales Whisperer

The A,B,C,D,Es of Selling

I first met Wes Schaeffer at a convention in Phoenix back in 2014. He was just starting to get some real traction in his business and he has exploded from there. His “The Sales Podcast” is one of my must listen to podcasts and he has taught me a ton!

You are going to enjoy our time with Wes and I hope you come away a better salesperson.

Do you know the only way to ensure you learn something from this podcast? Take some notes!

You don’t have to be all fancy about it and write them in your leather-bound journal. Just grab a brown paper bag and some blue crayons and let’s go to work.

Things Wes And I Talked About

  • While selling mobile homes he learned:
    • To follow a system
    • To have a process
    • To be a product of the product
  • Why he became a student of sales and continues to invest in himself.
  • Do you want to be a pro or an amateur?
  • As “The Sales Whisperer” Wes:
    • Trains sales trainers
    • Rehabilitates salespeople
  • Always Be Closing doesn’t fly today. (If you haven’t ever watched the famous scene from Glenngary Glen Ross you can watch it here. Carefully CLICK HERE WARNING!!! It is not safe for work.)
  • His sales cycle is:
    • (A)tract
    • (B)ond
    • (D)eliver/Delight
    • (C)onvert
    • (E)ndear

“Don’t stick with it until you get it right. Stick with it until you can’t get it wrong!” – Wes Schaeffer

  • Why you need 7 different voice mail scripts
  • You’re not that good
    • Talent is not transferable
    • Only systems allow you to grow and scale
    • Henry Ford is known because of his system
  • Jimmy Kimel and Oprah make enormous amounts of money by:
    • Asking good questions
    • That they have researched
    • So that they can have an engaging conversation
    • Sound familiar?
  • The biggest mistake salespeople make is not knowing their #1 job.
    • It isn’t selling
    • The #1 job is prospecting. It is the only thing you can control
  • The easiest person to sell is someone who has already bought from you.
  • It’s easy to be a Navy Seal. The trick? Don’t quit.

"I want to be remembered as someone who took his shot." - Wes Schaeffer

The Books Andy and i Talked About

As always: Click on the cover below to learn more or purchase through Amazon.

Breaking Through The Status Quo – Andy Neary

The Alchemist  – Paulo Coleho

NEXT WEEK

Eric Silverman returns to the Success Is Voluntary Podcast and he pulls NO punches. In fact, I'm guessing he is going to make all of us a little mad and that's o.k. We can't grow unless someone challenges/pushes us. Eric has always done that for me.

Until then, I wish you great SUCCESS! I’ve heard it’s VOLUNTARY…

John Lee Dumas – On Fire

The Power Of Focus

I have listened to John Lee Dumas’ (or JLD as he likes to be called) Entrepreneur On Fire podcast for several years. I have to be honest with you, I can’t keep up.  John literally produces a new podcast seven days a week! When I just checked today, he had produced 2082. WHAT?!?!

On the EOFire podcast John interviews top entrepreneurs and business leaders. His list of guests is crazy. With nearly 2,100 interviews (and counting) I promise you can find a guest that will help you and your business.

Instead of spending any more time telling you about JLD, I’d encourage you to jump on his website at EOFire.com

Get out your blue crayon and brown paper bag to take some notes. Let’s do this! Let me introduce you to the Mayor of Fire Nation himself, John Lee Dumas

Things Andy And I Talked About

Things John And I Talked About

(more…)

John O’Leary – Live Inspired

It's a matter of perspective...

John O’Leary might be my favorite guest to ever appear on the Success Is Voluntary Podcast. No offense to the previous 66 guests.

I have been to somewhere between 50 and 75 large, national sales/leadership conferences in my career. Invariably the organizers bring in a keynote speaker to inspire the audience. Some of them crush it and others have been ok, but for some reason miss the mark for me personally. 

In January of 2017, I heard today’s guest John O’Leary speak. I have never heard a speaker that I have taken away as much hope and excitement for life as I did that day. During his talk I literally lost it 2 times and walked away incredibly inspired. His message is still impacting my life.

When John O’Leary was 9 years old, he suffered burns over 100% of his body and was expected to die. He is now an inspirational speaker and author, teaching more than 50,000 people around the world each year how to live inspired

Not only has his book On Fire: The 7 Choices to Ignite a Radically Inspired Life become a national best seller, his podcast Live Inspired is in the top 20 podcasts on iTunes.

His message of hope and the ability for everyone, including you and me, to be overcomers was something I desperately needed at the time. I hope this podcast blesses you and impacts you in ways you are still remembering years from now.

I’d encourage you to listen to the entire podcast as John and I are doing something really cool for the first 5 people that email me.

If this podcast doesn’t inspire you, I give up. I say it every week, SERIOUSLY get out your pen and note pad. OK, enough build up! Please let me introduce you to my new friend John O’Leary.

Things John And I Talked About

  • John’s message is not about John. It’s about the people who showed up in his life.
  • Everyone has a story. Just not the one we tell the world.
  • John didn’t tell his story for 28 years.
  • We must embrace the past and learn from it.
  • At age 9, he was burned on 100% of his body and 83% were 3rd-degree burns.
  • Your whole world can literally change in the blink of an eye.
  • Read Jack Buck and the Kid.
  • The importance of “ordinary” people in your life.
  • Nurse Roy “Boy! Listen to me. You are going to walk again so you might as well get used to it.”
  • You are part of something important. Act like it!
  • You oftentimes have no idea of the impact you are making in someone’s life
  • How you ask the following questions makes all the difference in your life.
    • Why me?
    • Who cares?
    • What more can I do?
    • If your business plan works, will you have the life you actually want?
    • Make sure your ladder is against the right wall.
    • If your eyes are open for greatness, it’s EVERYWHERE!
    • There is a 1 in 400-trillion chance that you even exist.
    • I choose to thrive because: God demands it, my family deserves it, and the world is starved for it.
    • History has always pointed upward and to the right.
    • Seek justice, love mercy, walk humbly with God.
    • The best of your life points back to the worst of my life.
    • The best things are still ahead.
    • Ask the 3 questions above, every day as part of your morning ritual.

John's Billboard:

JUST STOP

The John and i Talked About

As always: Click on the cover below to learn more or purchase through Amazon.

Where To Connect With Andy

John’s Website/Podcast: http://johnolearyinspires.com/

Amazon Author’s Page: CLICK HERE

Facebook: JohnOLearyRisingAbove

Instagram: @JohnO’Leary.Inspires

LinkedIn: CLICK HERE

NEXT WEEK

Join me next week when we have podcast sensation, and business thought leader, John Lee Dumas on the SIV podcast.!

Until then, I wish you great SUCCESS! I’ve heard it’s VOLUNTARY…

Gerry Sandusky – Engage, Amaze and Influence

Your audience is rooting for you!

I was introduced to today’s guest, Gerry Sandusky by my good friend Eric Silverman. And just to be clear from the very beginning, this is not the same Jerry Sandusky that was convicted of child molestation while a football coach a Penn State.

Ok. We got that out of the way.

This Gerry is the play-by-play announcer of the Baltimore Ravens. How cool is that!?!? But that’s not why I asked him to come on.

You can imagine, his climb up the broadcasting ladder was arduous. Along the way, he had the opportunity to meet a vast amount of very influential people. He noticed some of these people were horrible communicators once they got to the front of the room to speak. Gerry decided to do something about it and he started a coaching company to teach people how to give presentations that Engage, Amaze and Influence their audience.

In our industry, I can’t imagine a better outcome whenever you make a presentation, whether you are trying to convince a Decision Maker to let you see their employees, or sharing the value of your coverage with those employees.

I loved talking with Gerry! I felt like I attended a master’s class for free!

Things Gerry And I Talked About

  • Your audience wants to be engaged, amazed, and influenced
  • How he became the play-by-play voice of the NFL’s Baltimore Ravens
  • Sports is the ultimate merit-based rewards system. Sales is a close second.
  • You are drawn to that level of competition or repelled by it.
  • Why he worked for 1.5 years for free at a Miami TV station.
  • Sales is a distance sport. It isn’t a sprint.
  • Smart people want to impress their audience. This doesn’t work.
  • The audience is in your corner.
  • You must be willing to have the pluck to suck.
  • The easier someone makes something look, the harder they’ve worked.
  • The higher up someone goes in the organization, the less likely is anyone to tell them they aren’t good at something.
  • Coaches need to lift people up. Not beat them up.
  • Skillset + confidence = Magic!
  • Three biggest mistakes people make when giving a presentation.
    • Read PowerPoint slides
    • Too much information in their presentation. If you info dump you lose control of what the audience takes away from your presentation.
    • Too married to their agenda – lose connection.

"Don't pay too much attention to the path everyone else has created. Just pay attention to the goal you're trying to reach. Feel free to cut your own path through the woods. Because sometimes the path you cut is a path other people would tell you ahead of time you can't possibly get through that way. And by not knowing that, you do get there that way." - Gerry Sandusky.

The Books gerry and i Talked About

As always: Click on the cover below to learn more or purchase through Amazon.

NEXT WEEK

Join me again next week when I talk to maybe the most inspiring person I have ever met. I promise you will be forever changed.

Until then, I wish you great SUCCESS! I’ve heard it’s VOLUNTARY…