LIFE and Leadership tidbits

I wanted to share some leadership thoughts to help everyone along  their journey in the LIFE business. In aviation, when you buy a ticket to go from point A to B, there are any number of potential obstacles or challenges  you may encounter before arriving at your destination. Anything from a bird strike to a mechanical problem or bad weather  can and will cancel the flight or at the very least, delay your departure and arrival.
We are so thankful to all of the Policy Council members, especially Orrin and Chris, for developing this amazing opportunity and system. We owe a lot to our personal mentors as well, Steve and Gia De Lorie, Terry and Ann Franks and Policy Council members Claude and Lana Hamilton. I dedicate this article to all of them. If it wasn’t for them, we would not be on the journey.
Whether you are a new business owner or a leader, here are some things to consider as you climb the ladder of success. It’s been said that this business is not easy but it is simple. The reason it’s simple on a big scale is because we have an amazing and unique opportunity, with a world-class system that guides us every step of the way. Fortunately for us, we have the correct Flight Plan, a systematic way to get you to your destination and the leadership to keep us on track. We are so blessed to have such amazing leaders to work with. Leadership is a journey, not a destination. The more I read, study and learn, the more I realize how much there is to know and improve on. Our team name is called the ” ROK”, or Rok of Kaizen. The Japanese word, “KAIZEN” in the dictionary means “continuous Improvement”. As we all learn, grow and improve on a daily basis, focus on our priorities, set goals and follow the system, this business will work, provided we work it.
Most of the challenges we have encountered over the last few years, all required a continuous application of timeless principles, mentoring with up-line and a discipline to follow the system on a consistent basis, to overcome them. It takes persistence, motivation, dedication, the hunger to get better and a discipline to develop tough skin, all while maintaining a soft heart. Of course, you must have a big dream. As Kirk Birtles is fond of saying, ” Your vision has to be bigger than your reality.” It is so true that we all need a reason or a “WHY” to do this business, otherwise obstacles, critics and Life’s distractions will get in the way.
There are many who are exploding their business and others who stay for a season and quit. What’s the difference? As written many times before, often the difference between success and failure is hanging on just a little longer, while enduring the struggles and challenges that come along the way. In the book, “The Slight Edge”, by Jeff Olson, he references a fact that should seem obvious, yet is worth mentioning. He states, ” How can you judge the course of action you’re taking by its results, when its results come last?” It is the things you do overtime that produce the results. Quite often, It’s the last 10% of your efforts that produce 90% of the results. According to Jeff, ” What you can do with your results is learn from them. Results are valuable feedback. Let them help motivate and guide your tomorrows.
But a focus on results only takes you out of the present moment where the action really is.” So action is the Key but just as Orrin References in his new book “Resolved, 13 Resolutions for LIFE”, page 112, PDCA is necessary to a successful outcome. PLAN, DO, CHECK and ADJUST. You must take action but check the results and adjust the action based on the result you got or the result you want. Sad to say, long before someone gets to read this, or apply these principles, they quit on themselves because they didn’t see instant results, even though they never applied the correct actions to achieve results.
One of the main things i want to address is something everyone will or has already experienced; Resistance! In the Book, “The Business of LIFE” by Orrin Woodward and Chris Brady, chapter 10- Swimming up-stream, talks about critics, skepticism and negativity. The Dream, Struggle and Victory every business owner must endure to be successful in business can be challenging. However, by acknowledging some of the struggles, addressing them head on and helping others figure out how to deal with them, the struggles, while necessary, can be handled with minimal pain. Martin Luther King JR said, “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”
Orrin and Chris state, ” When you decide to step out and pursue success in anything, there will be detractors. There will be people who shine doubt on what you are doing. As a matter of fact, negative resistance will be inversely proportional to the size of the undertaking. The bigger the dream, the bigger the critics” Further, Chris and Orrin say, “the key to finding success in life is to focus on what you know is right and ignore the negatives that come up along the way”.
Andy Stanley, author of, “Visioneering” (reference page 104 of Business of LIFE book), says, ” When someone catches a vision for bettering himself educationally or financially, his vision is often met with criticism from the people closest to him. Why? Because those who have no vision for their own academic pursuits or financial freedom feel threatened by those who have decided to get up and do something with themselves. Their insecurities about their own lack of education surface or they are forced to take a painful look at where they are financially as opposed to where they could be”.
Orrin says, ” 95% of America listens to other 95%ers”. The results one has in life is based on their thinking. If your thinking is the problem, you need to change your thinking to produce different actions in order to produce different results. For those that oppose you, they don’t know what they don’t know. Paul Pilzer says, ” The reason we do not embrace opposing views is that our human mind fears disorder and automatically avoids or rejects new ideas that challenge the existing order.” The other issue that can best be summed up from our mentor and friend Steve De Lorie is, ” People have PRE SUPPOSITIONS”. Critics often compare what we do to something they think this is and reject it or pass judgments”. This often prevents someone from making a decision based on facts and matters of the heart. Of course, as you get better at making a friend, finding a need, transferring the feeling and getting them involved in the system, your success rate will sky-rocket. How do you get better at showing the plan? Show 15 plans a month. Where have we heard that before?! I recommend everyone listen to 2 cds in particular on a regular basis; A check point Race by Chris Brady and The vital behaviors by Chris Brady.
This business clearly isn’t for everyone. If someone rejects the idea or opportunity, the best thing to do is acknowledge it and move on. There are plenty of people out there who do fit the qualities we look for, ambitious, looking, teachable and honest. There will be people you think need this business desperately. This is very likely true but often they won’t do this. As a new person in business, don’t let this shake you. As you have probably heard before, showing the plan is like going thru a 52 card deck; You are going to experience 2-9’s, which are comparably people who are not looking or interested and then come across face cards and aces, which are the ones who will hop on board and become your next leaders, provided they stick around long enough to make it work. Success demands a price and there are no short cuts, according to Chris Brady. The only thing one must determine is whether or not you are willing to pay the price for success. Part of paying the price is enduring some of these common issues.
My favorite quote in this category from F.A Hayek is, ” Nothing is more securely lodged than the ignorance of the experts”. Orrin and Chris also go on to say,” Critics are cowards, and criticism is the death gurgle of the non achievers” How true these statements are. For all of the people who say it can’t be done, there are people making it happen. Look at the troll people during some of our recognition sessions. If another human being can do this, so can we. Although it can be difficult to endure negativity from the people you show the plan to or from loved ones who supposedly have your best interests in mind, if you understand that criticism is normal, you can learn to handle those who may try to derail you. You are holding the “cookie”. When someone either rejects what you are sharing with them or tries to discourage you, remember what Orrin says, ” Its spit balls off a battle ship”. Your posture and attitude will carry you thru to the next person who is looking and will have an open mind. I often tell prospects directly to suspend their “presuppositions” and that an open mind is like a parachute, its works best when its open. I thank all of my up-line like Steve De Lorie, Terry Franks and Claude Hamilton, along with many of the other leaders on the TEAM, for some of those great one liners that make a difference when talking to people.
A lot of times it doesn’t take much to derail someone, whether they read some negativity on the internet or listen to people who are not qualified to have an opinion, yet, skepticism is normal so expect it. Trust the people you know and work with. Ask questions. As Chris Brady says, ” Truth is verified in the theatre of action” In other words, keep pressing on because the truth will show that any negativity, resistance or criticism can be overcome based on the truth and factual information. This is the best business on the planet and although some may not see that right away, if they give it a chance, they quickly see it. Does this business have flaws and issues that come up from time to time? Of course. Fortunately, we are working with some amazing men and women who have spent their entire lives living by the right principles, values, morals and ethics who apply both ” directional innovation” and the process PDCA, plan, do, check and adjust, to fix what is broken, and tweak it to make it better for all of us. Don’t look at things in a negative light, have grace with the process and understand that things will go wrong. Not everything will be perfect. Apply the simple principle that 90% of what happens is how you deal with it and only 10% is about what actually happens. Have EQ or “Emotional Intelligence” and remain calm. When an engine fire occurs on an airplane, it’s not cool to scream, ” FIRE, we are all going to crash and die!” I don’t think anything that happens in this business can compare to the potential ramifications of an engine fire in flight, so why do people overreact in business? EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE.
The last thing i want to talk about is something Chris Brady has talked about recently concerning consistency. It does not take fanaticism to achieve success. It takes a steady consistent effort that produce results over time. Quite often the thing that is keeping us from success is US. The system is designed to help everyone learn what is required to be successful in this business and in life. The question is, how hungry and disciplined are we to follow the system. Everything is laid out for us and it is up to us to follow in the foot steps of giants who have the fruit on the tree.

Its been said that mentorship is the lost art of leadership and your mentor is there to keep you on track. Allow them to hold you accountable for your progress and success. It’s the little things you do over time that make the difference. If you have issues in certain areas like booking plans, listening to cd’s or reading, allow your mentor to hold you accountable for helping you accomplish little goals. What you do when no one is watching often makes the difference. Don’t do it for your mentor, do it for you and your team. We often know whether or not you are listening to cd’s, reading or attending meetings. How do we know? It shows thru words, actions, attitudes and results. Of course I say that in a loving way. It takes the right stuff to become successful in this or anything in life. Once you figure out that you are the only one holding you back from success, then the rest is a matter of doing what you have to do at any cost. Chris Brady says, “Success is always on the other side of inconvenience.” The struggle will be worth the victory because your dreams, goals and aspirations should be worth everything to you. Stay the course and you can and will achieve your goals and dreams. I’m proud of you all for having the guts and courage to pursue the LIFE YOU ALWAYS WANTED.

God Bless,
Ben and Tanya Stern
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