Making Waves at C-Level

Jason Call is a guy who has done a lot of cool things in his life. He is a successful, results driven executive, trainer, business owner, marketing leader, board member, and manager whose values, experience and creativity bring about increased sales for international and domestic clients in a wide array of industries.

Listen to this episode of "Cool Things Entrepreneurs Do" and hear about Jason's journey and his passion to give back to the greater good. Jason and Thom Singer have been friends since they played baseball together in junior high.

Jason is also behind "Dog Beds for Social Justice", selling the best quality dog beds with part of the proceeds going to the King's Ransom organization.

Direct download: CTED_226.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:18am EDT

Pat McDaniel is the founder of a website dedicated to helping motivated but weary people keep moving forward by finding the smartest path toward their success. Pat is passionate about sharing his story about how he kept hitting the wall, got mad, and was eventually ready to change how he made decisions, so that he could be on the right path.

Pat has a highly diverse background. He has been a long-time student (made it through the 19th grade) a CPA, a pastor and church planter, a sales manager, a search engine marketing strategist working in a marketing agency, an entrepreneur who started his own business from scratch, and an author of the E-Book: 5 Step Process to Making Better More Successful Decisions.

Pat has a distinct talent for helping entrepreneurs/leaders avoid unnecessary heartache, and find the smartest path by making better decisions to equal a better life. With that, his current research project is on decision making: helping readers understand how to overcome the hidden influences that can lead to bad outcomes.

Direct download: CTED_225.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:04pm EDT

Check out this episode where you will hear about an entrepreneur's journey, bull semen, and cow beauty pageants.

Michele Payn personifies passion. Known as one of North America's leading experts in connecting farm and food, she serves as a resource for people around the plate. Michele encourages all of her clients and audiences to find people's hot buttons and speak their language - whether it's growing the conversation between farm gate and food plate, developing strategy, or building an advocacy plan. Widely known as a "change agent," Michele delivers training programs and motivational keynotes to empower organizations to build connected communities.

Entrepreneur: Utilizing her diverse professional experience in the agricultural, sales and not-for-profit sectors, Michele founded Cause Matters Corp., a company designed to build connections around the food plate, in 2001. Cause Matters Corp. focuses on addressing food myths, developing science communication, and connecting farm to food. In each of these core areas, Michele helps organizations clearly identify issues, understand their audience and grow solutions. Michele's goal is to help you communicate "why your cause matters" - whether you're a scientist, dietitian or in agribusiness.

Farm girl. Mom. Science enthusiast: She knows agriculture because she lives agriculture. Payn holds degrees in Agricultural Communications and Animal Science from Michigan State University, where she saw science come to life firsthand as a student worker in the animal reproductive physiology laboratory. Michele is past president of College of Agriculture and Natural Resources Alumni Association and had the impact of her work featured in one of the first Spartan Sagas. Career highlights include a Regional Directorship for the National FFA Foundation, where she sold over $5 million in corporate sponsorships and led campaigns to develop community support for various Foundation expansions. She has also marketed and sold dairy genetics to more than 25 countries, managed e-business accounts and presented training programs in developing countries. Michele still holds her firsthand farm experience as the best contributor to her work.

Her lifelong passion for agriculture stems from childhood; she has been breeding and judging dairy cattle as a registered Holstein breeder since the age of nine and now resides on a small central Indiana farm. She enjoys working on the farm with her daughter, making memories with friends, traveling, coaching 4-H & FFA members and cheering on the Michigan State Spartans.

Author. Food translator: Michele has been baking since she was a young girl, but became a full-fledged foodie when she lived in Italy for a summer. She wrote the two-sided book "No More Food Food Fights! Growing a Productive Farm & Food Conversation" to encourage farm and food people to reach across the plate to find commonalities. Her new book, "Food Truths from Farm to Table: 25 Ways to Shop & Eat Without Guilt" will be released in early 2017 to bring clarity to grocery shopping and address food marketing myths.

Innovator" Michele's strong belief in community-building and overcoming food insecurity stems from experience on four continents, including working in the Ukraine and Egypt, through United States Agency for International Development (USAID) projects. She has been selected as a Face of Innovation and is also active in her central Indiana community, volunteering with FFA, 4-H, church and school.

Payn continues to hone her skills after helping thousands of people around the world. As a member of the National Speakers Association, Michele is the founder of a professional networking group for generation X and Y speakers. She has earned her Certified Speaking Professional, a designation awarded to CSPless than 10% of professional speakers globally.

Michele founded #AgChat and #FoodChat, a weekly moderated discussion on Twitter, in April 2009. Tens of thousands of people from more than 20 countries have participated in this highly visible conversation around food and farm issues. This community nominated Michele as one of Mashable's Top Three AgChat FoundationTwitter User's of the Year in 2009, putting agriculture alongside celebrities. Michele was one of the founding AgChat Foundation's board members in 2010 to grow the story of farmers, ranchers and agvocates in social media.

Michele measures success in conversations around the food plate by people who are willing to reach out to help make their cause matter. In celebration of this, Cause Matters Corp. awarded 10 food and ag organizations grants on its 10th anniversary. The company will continue that tradition with 15 Cause Forward grants this year in celebration of 15 years of building farm and food connections...stay tuned.

Direct download: CTED_224.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:44am EDT

Mark J. Podolsky (AKA The Land Geek) is widely considered the
Country’s most trusted and foremost authority on buying and selling
raw, undeveloped land within the United States.

He has been actively investing in Real Estate and Raw Land since 2001
and has completed over 5,000 unique transactions. Mark’s company,
Frontier Equity Properties, LLC, is an A+ rated BBB real estate company.
Mark has achieved this level of success largely due to his core business
philosophy – “Happy Customers Guaranteed.”

Mark is the host of one of three top rated podcasts in the Investing Category
on iTunes aptly titled "The Best Passive Income Model" and "The Art of
Passive Income". He is also the host of "the Land Geek Podcast- Work
Smart. Earn More. Learn How."

Direct download: CTED_223.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:36am EDT

Brent Upham is a serial entrepreneur who started his first business when he was in elementary school, which also included several side businesses throughout his teenage years. After earning a scholarship to play baseball in college a freak injury forced Brent to follow the traditional route of graduating college and entering the corporate world. It only took a few years for him to realize that corporate structure and the typical 9-5 wasn’t for him.

Channeling his passion for sports, fitness and health Brent turned his passion into a multi million dollar Online Fitness Business. Together, Brent and his wife Alli have created an award winning Beachbody Coaching business with a team of over 8000 strong across the country by harnessing the power of social media.

As creator and co-host of the 21st Century CEO, Brent has taken all that he’s learned through the ups and downs of his entrepreneurial journey to motivate and inspire those trying to get their side hustles off the ground. Brent and his co-host Norm Tumlinson give common sense business advice for today’s entrepreneur that is practical and immediately applicable.

Direct download: CTED_222.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:18pm EDT

Kristin Arnold, MBA, CPF, CSP is a high stakes meeting facilitator, conference designer and professional panel moderator. She's been facilitating conversations between executives and managers to make better decisions and achieve substantive results for over 20 years. She is the author of the award-winning book, Boring to Bravo: Proven Presentation Techniques to Engage, Involve and Inspire Audiences to Action. She is also the past president of the US National Speakers Association and on the Executive Development Faculty in the Schulich School of Business at York University in Toronto.

Listen to episode 221 of "Cool Things Entrepreneurs Do" and hear Kristin's career story. From sales person at a department store to the US Coast Guard to 23 yeas as an entrepreneur.

Listen closely when she talks about "Hyper-Niching" your business, as we should all find ways to stand out from our competition.

Direct download: CTED_221.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:49am EDT

Steve Coscia’s clients make more money through better customer retention, increased upselling and heightened awareness to how stress can limit productivity and effectiveness. Coscia’s strategies cut through the clutter and focus on the key tactical behaviors which enable a company to become world class.

An avid researcher of customer service trends, Coscia conducted one of the industry’s first studies of stress in the customer service environment. This survey revealed the causes of stress along with the most common manifestations of post-stress behavior among customer service professionals. Tele-Stress is a registered trademark of Coscia Communications. His books, videos, audio programs and e-learning have helped thousands of customer service professionals.

Coscia has earned the Certified Speaking Professional ® (CSP) designation from the National Speakers Association.

Direct download: CTED_220.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:03am EDT

In working on a program for a corporate employee training program Thom Singer conducted a survey where he asked people if they felt they were living up to their full potential. The results of the survey surprised him when 1/3 of respondents gave a resounding "YES" (he did not assume it would be that high). However the other 2/3 of the group openly shared their own disappointments and the reasons they believed they were being held back.

In this episode Thom shares his thought and personal experiences in living and working with feeling of coming up short. Even though his business is successful, he knows he can do more, and the internal struggles with what the wants to achieve (and knows he can do) makes him question everything.

If you are an entrepreneur or a solopreneur who has ever faced an internal battle within your own head with living up to your potential, this episode is a "must listen". While he does not have all the answers, Thom knows that you have to be tenacious and focused if you want to get more done and have the strongest results.


Direct download: CTED_219.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:02pm EDT

Too many Americans are living as prisoners in their own bodies, held
captive by bad habits that have drained them of their livelihood and
sentenced them to a premature death. These harsh realities are what
have kept Dr. Phil Carson passionate about practicing pharmacy since
1985. After encountering many patients who were seeking answers
when their needs were not met by traditional medicine, Dr. Phil founded
Carson Natural Health in 2005 with the mission of helping patients fnd
the best natural solutions to their health problems. Dr. Phil is passionate
about improving his patient’s quality of life and encouraging everyone
he comes in contact with to live healthier lives and transform their overall
health into a blessing, not a burden.

Dr. Phil Carson knows how to help people get the most out of their life
by working together with them to uncover the root cause of their health
issues. Patients come to him with problems and leave with renewed
hope that they can be healthy again. A practicing pharmacist in the
Southeast, since 1985 he has not only consistently improved many
patients quality of life, but also literally saved a few of them.

In this episode Thom interviews Dr. Carson about what healthy habits entrepreneurs can adopt that will help them be more effective.

Direct download: CTED_218.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:42pm EDT

Tom Schwab knows how to build an online business. Marketing at its heart is
starting a conversation with someone who could be an ideal customer. Tom
helps small business owners, entrepreneurs and soloprenuers get featured
on leading podcasts their prospects are already listening to. Then he shows
them how to turn listeners into customers.

• Author of PODCAST GUEST PROFITS: Grow your business
with a targeted interview strategy

• Founder of Interview Valet, the concierge level booking service

Check out this episode for rich advice for entrepreneurs on how to build a business.


Direct download: CTED_217.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:42pm EDT

A keynote speaker for global women's leadership conferences on leadership, influence, and business, her revolutionary thinking and interactive presentation style captivates and energizes audiences. Pegine is one of only 8 women inducted into the 58 member Motivational Speakers Hall of Fame. Her company produces the ““Global Women's Executive Leadership Experience™“. which is a simulation and situational training exercise for business executive women leaders. The memorable experiences prepare women executive leaders for high stress, high value moments. They gain influence and confidence, Rated as one of the most profound leadership experiences by women participants from around the world. 18% receive promotions within 6 months.

Pegine has over 30 years of experience developing women and teen girls as leaders. Quoted in the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and Forbes. She is the cover story for Minority Business Entrepreneur Magazine and Speaker Magazine. Her company,, was named North Florida’s #3 Fastest Growing Privately Owned Company. She is one of fewer than 800 speakers worldwide to earn the Certified Professional Speaker®. The rigorous process that requires 5-10 years of professional experience before applying. It is an extensive, independent audit focused on enterprise, ethics, eloquence, and expertise.

A result driven pioneer her scale situational experiences include a cultural negotiation live situational training exercise for over 12,000 military officers from around the world. It included with 50 role players creating 12 villages so officers can practice among diverse communities.
Women seeking political office, venture capital, board positions and confidence hire Pegine for her coaching and to have a customized “Global Women's Executive Leadership Experience™ “. Her book is a SHRM Best Seller called “Sometimes You Need to Kick Your Own Butt”.

Keynote speaker for global women's leadership conferences on leadership, influence, and business Producer of the “Global Women's Executive Leadership Experience™ “

Direct download: CTED_216.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:56am EDT

Marcello Pedalino is an award-winning entrepreneur, lifestyle consultant, and fitness coach. He is the author of the new inspirational book, “Celebrate Life: How to Live It Up, Discover Fulfillment, and Experience the Joy You Deserve."

As a lifestyle consultant and fitness coach, Pedalino advises individuals, groups, and organizations on how to enhance their current health, style, and overall wellness status. Marcello’s health and wellness articles have been published by several prominent online publications and he’s often chosen to speak at conferences where the topic of work-life balance and energy management are a priority.

Direct download: CTED_215.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:43am EDT

Jake Pusch is a technology sales executive who has a passion for acting. Where many people abandon their dreams as they get into a career, Jake has found the time to make acting a priority. While working hard and finding career success in a tech company can be all consuming, he has made a commitment by taking acting classes, auditioning, and even working with friends to complete a short film.

It turns out there is a lot of similarities between being an entrepreneur and the life of an actor. Rejection and failure are common in both professions and there is the need to understand the other players around you and respond to them appropriately.

Jake the co-star of an upcoming short film called "The Agenda" (in which Thom Singer has a small role). In this episode Thom and Jake discuss the film and what went into making this project a reality.

Find more info about Jake Pusch on social media (including Twitter @JakePusch) or on IMBD And search Facebook for The Agenda Film 2016 to view the movie once it is released.

Direct download: CTED_214.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:23am EDT

Steve Heimerman is a master storyteller. After 20 years in broadcast
journalism, Steve founded Tilt Motion- an award-winning video
production company. By expertly applying emotion to communicate
concepts both big and small, Tilt Motion’s work has drawn acclaim
from customers including United Healthcare, Wells Fargo and Ford.

Tilt Motion also has the unique ability to distill complex topics into
videos that entertain, engage, and educate. This ability is important
to note because marketing in the age of information overload is
becoming increasingly difficult. When nearly 2 out of 3 people prefer
video to reading text- you have an opportunity to engage!

Direct download: CTED_213.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:07am EDT

Katie Allen is Vice President of viaONEHOPE, a merit-based marketing platform that empowers entrepreneurs to make an impact while making an income. Katie leads the business and the community of more than 1,200 Cause Entrepreneurs, or CEOs.

viaONEHOPE was founded by ONEHOPE, a brand with a mission to celebrate and serve the world through thoughtfully-crafted products that each makes a measurable impact for a specific charitable cause. viaONEHOPE provides “CEOs” the opportunity to make an income by hosting events ranging from in-home wine tastings to fundraising galas, while making an impact in their local communities.

In addition to everyday impact built into each ONEHOPE product, 15 percent of sales from viaONEHOPE events are donated to the host’s cause of choice.
Since joining viaONEHOPE in 2014, Katie has empowered Cause Entrepreneurs across the US to contribute to ONEHOPE’s efforts in raising more than $2 million in donations to national and global nonprofits, including ASPCA, ACT Today, Why Hunger and more.

Katie has 20 years of sales and marketing experience, leading key initiatives in both categories for major corporations such as FOX Broadcasting, Turner Network Television, Mars Inc. and Novartis Inc. She is an active member of the Direct Selling Association, Women’s Power Circle, and dedicates time volunteering in her community.

After experiencing firsthand the challenges of raising a family and working fulltime, Katie transitioned to a career in Direct Selling to fulfill the need for balance, freedom and flexibility. She is passionate about helping other entrepreneurs find and fulfill their purpose while doing work that makes a difference in the world.

Katie graduated from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She and her husband John are proud parents of their two daughters, Harper and Margeaux.

Direct download: CTED_212.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:20am EDT

Todd Nevins is a digital media executive who’s founded 3 successful startups – 4 if you count the beef jerky company in Mexico – specializing in marketing, technology & career development. He is also the host of the Go Hunt Life Podcast.

He is a published writer/industry expert who has been quoted in Forbes, Computer World, Inc., All Analytics, datanami, Plotting Success and the Dallas Business Journal. Additionally he spent years interviewing top business leaders for a weekly ‘Exclusive Chat Series’ exploring career paths and industry trends.

Clients have included Fortune 1000 corporations in financial services, healthcare, entertainment, government, education, energy, retail, ecommerce, telecom and software.

Todd now lives in Austin, TX, but after nearly 20 years in Dallas, TX; he and his wife left everything behind and moved to Merida, Mexico where they spent five years. He is the guy to talk to if you want to know about pulling the rip cord on your life and jumping into something totally new.

Find him on Twitter at @Todd_Nevins

Direct download: CTED_211.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:28am EDT

Justin Deese is a CEO who is a highly sought-after business strategist, visionary, and self-made entrepreneur. His passion is to help move other entrepreneurs from business operators to business owners. He simultaneously built three flourishing in-home service companies in multiple states, is a certified E-Myth Business Coach, the Chief Executive Officer of Blue Collar Success Group and is an expert at helping fellow business owners structure and manage their companies for maximum profitability. Justin draws on his decades of real experience to help small business owners avoid the daily distractions and make every hour of their work count.

Justin has a distinct talent for helping entrepreneurs recognize growth opportunities, remove what’s hindering their success, and develop customized strategies based on their personal goals. He has extensive working knowledge regarding all aspects of operating a successful in-home service business, including (but not limited to) sales and marketing, recruitment, systematization, and human resources.

Direct download: CTED_210.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:40am EDT

Matt Miller graduated from the United States Air Force Academy in 1989 and was an Air Force pilot for 9 years. His long-term desire was to start a business to build a lifestyle based on freedom and choice. A conversation with a good friend led him on a 10-year business quest that has brought Matt's franchising company to the cutting edge of both the vending and school fundraising industries. Starting with an investment of $100 he has built School Spirit Vending into a multi-million dollar vending business.

After a successful career in the corporate world, Matt found he was looking to take control of his life. The success of his business allowed him to move to the country, home school his children, and live the life he wanted. He loves living in "the middle of nowhere" and raises pigs and then sends them to freezer camp.

Learn more about his company and download his book on owning a franchise business at

Direct download: CTED_209.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:56am EDT

This episode is the audio of a webinar that Thom Singer did with Kelly Newsome from ConnectRoot. The topic is a discussion of going from Networking to Sales. Meeting people is great, but we need to get to a point in our business relationships where we are converting our networking activities to the bottom line.

The advice on how important it is to "network" is taught to everyone in business, but people are confused as to what it means. The definition of the word "networking" has come to mean too many different thing in our business communities. Networking should not be a verb (you should not "go networking"), but instead a way of life that impacts all aspects of your business and personal world.

What does networking really mean? It is the creation of long-term and mutually beneficial relationships between two or more people, where those involved find more success through the connections than they would without the connection. Thus networking is not just one-sided or for those times when you are in need of new business.

But building relationships alone is not enough. Knowing people and not actually growing your business is a waste of time.

For the full webinar visit:

Direct download: CTED_208.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:09am EDT

Roger Rickard is a speaker, trainer and consultant that helps businesses, non-profits and associations find their voice in advocacy.

About Roger

Roger has been an advocate for citizen involvement since the age of 13. He was elected to public office as a young man, later served as a legislative staffer for the Pennsylvania State Legislature, and has worked on many local, regional and state campaigns as well as numerous Presidential campaigns.
His work spans a cross-section of local, regional, national and international organizations. In 2011, Roger authored The DMO Advocacy Toolkit for Destination Marketing Association International. In 2013, Voices in Advocacy® built a grassroots meetings industry advocacy platform for the Convention Industry Council called the CIC AdvocacyHub™.

In 2013, Smart Meetings Magazine did a cover story on Roger, entitled Passion & Purpose, Roger Rickard’s Call to Action. Also in 2013, Successful Meetings Magazine named Roger one of the Six People Worth Watching in the Meetings Industry. In 2014, Meetings Focus Magazine named him to their inaugural list of Meetings Trendsetters.

Roger majored in Political Science at Pennsylvania State University and is still a proud Nittany Lion.

His education, experience and enthusiasm enlighten audiences on key issues and relationships that turn passion into action.

Listen to episode 207 of the podcast to hear Roger's entrepreneurial journey and his advice for those who want to join the ranks of entrepreneur.

Direct download: CTED_207.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:38am EDT

If you have ever visited Ann Arbor, Michigan the odds are you have eaten at Zingerman's Deli. This episode is a great interview with Ari Weinzweig, co-founder and founding partner of the company now known as Zingerman's Community of Businesses.

Ari moved to Ann Arbor from his hometown of Chicago to attend the University of Michigan. After graduating with a degree in Russian history, he went to work washing dishes in a local restaurant and soon discovered that he loved the food business. Along with his partner Paul Saginaw, Ari started Zingerman’s Delicatessen in 1982 with a $20,000 bank loan, a staff of two, a small selection of great-tasting specialty foods and a relatively short sandwich menu. Today, Zingerman’s is an Ann Arbor institution—the source of great food and great experiences for over 500,000 visitors every year. Each day the Deli serves up thousands of made-to-order sandwiches with ingredients like corned beef and pastrami, homemade chopped liver and chicken salad. The Deli stocks an array of farmhouse cheeses, smoked fish, salamis, estate-bottled olive oils, vintage vinegars, whole bean coffees, loose leaf teas and much more. Ari and Paul have built Zingerman’s into an organization with a 500+ staff and annual sales approaching $40,000,000 a year.

Ari is involved in many educational activities. He has served as a board member and president of The American Cheese Society and as a board member of the Retail Division of the National Association for the Specialty Food Trade. He is a frequent guest speaker in business classes at the University of Michigan and Eastern Michigan University, as well as at various food and business conferences in this country and abroad including the American Institute of Wine and Food, Oldways Preservation and Exchange Trust, the Gathering of Games, and the NASFT Fancy Food Show.

In 1988 Zingerman’s was instrumental in the founding of Food Gatherers, a perishable food rescue program, and continues to be a major supporter of the organization. Every year Food Gatherers delivers over a million pounds of food to people in need. Ari has also served on the board of The Ark, the longest continuously-operating folk music venue in America. In April of 1995, Ari and Paul received the Jewish Federation of Washtenaw County’s first Humanitarian Award for their community contributions. Ari was recognized as one of the “Who’s Who of Food & Beverage in America” by the 2006 James Beard Foundation. In 2007, Ari and Paul were presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award from Bon Appetit magazine for their work in the food industry.

Ari has written over 250 issues of the Zingerman’s newsletter, and has contributed to such magazines as Fine Cooking, Specialty Foods, Gourmet Retailer, and Food and Wine. He is also the author of several books which can me found at


Direct download: CTED_206.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:09am EDT

Jean LeFebvre is the founder of Panache Images, a personal style and wardrobe consultancy for people who want to dress to enhance their professional and personal image.

If you are like most people, you were not born knowing how to dress for your unique face, body and coloring. So you end up with closets full of unflattering, mismatched clothes that don't fit you or your current life. And with lots of frustration over the money you have spent with so little to show for it.

When you are ready for a more positive clothing experience, having a pro to guide you in creating a personalized wardrobe is the short route to looking your best. Panache Images works with you to develop and execute a personalized wardrobe plan within your timeline and budget. Consultations are informative, friendly and private. Services such as Color and Style Analysis, Closet Edit, Personal Shopping and Closet Integration give you real help in having the right clothing for you and knowing how to wear it to flatter your shape and form.

Panache Images provides the creative and practical support you need to choose clothing that complements you for any occasion of your life.

Check out this episode and hear about Jean's journey as an entrepreneur.

Direct download: CTED_205.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

Donna Kastner helps event professionals and association executives improve revenue performance through her consultancy, Enlighten 123. Locking in on critical needs for top targeted segments, she works with clients to fine-tune their content marketing strategies, grow loyalty, and ultimately, create raving fans who appreciate how events accelerate their journey to better.

Donna is also the Founder of Retirepreneur, helping experienced business executives with knowledge/skills in areas where needs are high, but the candidate pool is light to "jump the shark" and make a smooth transition from full-time employment to more fulfilling and flexible work as a consultant. She has just released the official Retirepreneur Podcast. Give it a listen on iTunes or at

Direct download: CTED_204.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:35am EDT

Steve Cunningham is the CEO of ReadItFor.Me.

What is is a way for individuals and teams to learn, retain and apply the ideas from the best business and personal development books the world has to offer to businesses and their lives. We help people spark the conversations that can unlock their greatest work.

How is this different from something like Cliffs or Coles Notes and other book summary-type services? is more than just a book summary-type service. Most other book summary services simply take the main concepts or ideas from the books and summarize them into bite-sized pieces. by contrast was developed based on research into how people learn, behave and act therefore taking it beyond just summarizing books. We take the world’s best business and personal development books, and turn them into engaging, zero-preparation workshops that leaders can run with their teams in less than one hour a month.

Steve started his career as a lawyer in Toronto, and after one week left to join his family business. Later he started a digital marketing agency and eventually founded ReadItFor.Me. His journey is one we hear often from entrepreneurs, in that he did not plan his path, but he loves every part of the entrepreneurial ride.

In this episode he talks about his experiences, advice and has a special offer for the listeners at

Direct download: CTED_203.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:26am EDT

Ruud Janssen is a Facilitator, Business Modeller, Event Designer & Marketeer with expert knowledge of Global Meetings industry and Membership Based Organisations. Author, Digital Event Strategist, Networker, Visual Thinker, Consultant & Serial Entrepreneur. Radically creative and able to inspire people.

Internationally he is recognized as a thought leader in the meetings / events industry.

He is the founder of Event Model Generation, a Training and Consultancy organisation that helps organisations align their activities by illustrating potential trade-offs of their events. The Event Model Canvas is a strategic management template for developing new or documenting existing events and conference models.

Building a thorough Event Model Canvas can be achieved through a 10 step #EventCanvas methodology where the team involved in the event systematically analyses, describes and outlines the inputs for the components in the final canvas prototypes. The methodology is sequential and makes use of a range of visual thinking techniques.

The Foundation is the organisation that enables anyone to download the #EventCanvas for free under a 4.0 Creative Commons Attribution, Non-Commercial, No Derivatives license worldwide. It’s sole purpose is to promote and support innovation in the field of Event Design.

The Foundation supports and enables the creation of a common visual language for events design using the #EventCanvas.

It is tasked to provide the funding and resources to enable research, training and to make the Event Canvas and the methodology available to as many practitioners as possible. Ultimately, it enables teams across all geographies to design events that matter using a common methodology and template.

It is a foundation under establishment in the Netherlands (Stichting Event Canvas Foundation).

To support the cause, the foundation accepts donations from donors to enable scholarships, development and evangelism for Event Design and the Event Canvas.

Direct download: CTED_202.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:37am EDT

In episode 201 Thom Singer shares his journey the last six months that has included changing his diet (he gave up most wheat and sugar), training to run a half marathon (He had almost never ran in his life), and changing his outbound business development habits.

Entrepreneurs can fall into two camps when it comes to their diet and fitness. They are either very dedicated to good choices, or they let their health slide. Thom had been in the later camp for most of his career. For Lent he gave up sugar and wheat, and then took up running in the spring. The result is a weight loss of 25 lbs, a new wardrobe (because his clothes no longer fit), more mental focus, and suddenly he calls himself a runner (excitedly going 3-5 miles a day four or five days a week).

He also doubled down on his business and has become a daily outbound salesman again. His speaking and coaching businesses are seeing an immediate impact from his efforts and he is excited to show others how they too can have results if they commit to small actions daily.

If you want to make some changes in your life, you need to listen to this episode. Thom opens up about what he has been doing and how he is changing his focus each morning to make sure he is making the right choices.

Knowing your goal makes it easy when you have to make hard decisions. What do you want to accomplish?

Direct download: CTED_201.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:58am EDT

Episode 200 is a big milestone for any podcast. When Thom Singer started this show he had no idea it would become such an important part of his business life. In interviewing nearly 200 entrepreneurs, solopreneurs, business leaders and others with the entrepreneurial spirit he has been exposed to many people with different paths to success.

In planning for this show Thom decided to look at what he has learned in speaking to others who have carved their own career path.

Ten Lesson Learned From Hosting "Cool Things Entrepreneurs Do"

1. Entrepreneurship is not for everyone - and that is okay.
2. To be successful you have to go for it.
3. Enthusiasm and ambition matter.
4. Planning and focus (with execution) are key.
5. You have to take the risk if you want the rewards.
6. Networking is important.
7. Your product or service must fill a need.
8. Sales, sales, sales.
9. There will be rough days and weeks.
10. Pay attention to your numbers.


Direct download: CTED_200.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

As Founder and CEO of the marketing firm Triple R Marketing, Matt Ruedlinger has been described as “highly creative with an unparalleled understanding of service”. With over 20 years’ experience in Marketing and Sales, Matt has helped small-local businesses and brand-name Fortune 500 companies alike become leaders in their industry. He has worked alongside world-renowned author and sales expert Jeffrey Gitomer, and has helped businesses promote their products at high-profile events such as the Sport Emmy Awards.

Matt’s vision of Triple R Marketing is key to his core belief and operating principles, driving him to create distinguished customer experiences, “Customer experiences are not planned based on data, they happen when you empower the right people who love what they do, and I love what I do.”

Customer experience is integral to his work. He believes satisfied customer are not a level of success, as being satisfied is the bare minimum we will accept in today’s social world. With this customer-centric business philosophy, business acumen and commitment to rapid, reliable results he and his staff have retained over 96% of his customers since day one of Triple R Marketing in 2005.


Direct download: CTED_199.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

This episode of "Cool Things Entrepreneurs Do" is a simulcast of the "Reality Check Podcast with Craig Price" (Episode 208). Each year Craig hosts a "Speakers Roundtable" for his show at the National Speakers Association "Influence" Conference. What he creates is a wonderful dialogue between people who are active in the business who share their insights and ideas, while laughing and exposing their mutual friendship and respect.

This conversation is a real behind the scenes look at the world of being a professional speaker, with an emphasis on marketing, standing out in a crowded field, embracing your real self, and ways to promote each other.

Craig Price is joined by Certified Speaking Professionals (CSP's) Thom Singer, Jessica Pettitt, Dr Mary Kelly, and Jason Kotecki (Jason, Mary, Jessica and Craig have all been guests on "Cool Things Entrepreneurs Do").

For more information about Craig Price and The Reality Check Podcast, visit

Direct download: CTED_198.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:48am EDT

Marquesa Pettway, CSP, a designation awarded to less than 700 speakers in the world, DTM, a Business Reinvention Expert, Professional Speaker, Author of The Reinvention Roadmap, SpeakerTalk Radio host (on itunes) and the founder and chief coach of The National Center for Speaker Training.

She helps entrepreneurs attract clients and earn income by using their voice to grow their business. She’s coached hundreds of entrepreneurs and professionals to profitable businesses since 2005.

Marquesa provides the "how" in her Reinvention Roadmap™ and SpeakerBlueprint Roadmap and many other business boosting programs via THE NATIONAL CENTER FOR SPEAKER TRAINING. She's recognized an as expert by New York Newsday. Les Brown, the internationally renowned motivational speaker, calls her a brilliant speaker and business coach.

Associate Producer for CNN small business show, "Managing with Lou Dobbs" turned Biz Reinvention Coach to hundreds of entrepreneurs and hundreds of organizations since 1993. The New York Daily News quoted her as a "guru". New York based expert, Marquesa Pettway ALSO reinvents organizations.

Ms. Pettway is a columnist for Speaker Magazine and was featured in Toastmasters Magazine in August 2015. She was also featured on the Voices of Experience Digital Magazine for Speakers Twice; She serves as the Live Broadcasting Host for Women Speakers Association. She's a syndicated columnist for TV.

To learn more about Marquesa's programs, please visit

Direct download: CTED_197.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:09am EDT

Mark Hunter is "The Sales Hunter." He helps companies and salespeople find and retain better customers. He is also the author of the best-selling book, High-Profit Selling.

He is recognized as one of the "Top 50 Most Influential Sales and Marketing Leaders." All of this has him traveling globally nearly 230 days per year, working with companies to help them grow their top-line sales and bottom-line profits.

He is known for his sales growth strategies and consultative selling approach to business. Mark Hunter is frequently quoted in the media and is a keynote speaker at major conferences on the subject of sales and sales leadership. His sales techniques are in use today by salespeople on 5 continents and in more than 100 different countries.

Be sure to read Mark's latest best-selling book "High-Profit Selling - Win the Sale Without Compromising on Price" by AMACOM. In the book Mark shares proven strategies to maximize price and minimize discounts. The book contains a step by step process with how to increase your prices.

What Mark Does:

Mark Hunter "The Sales Hunter" delivers keynotes and sales training workshops centered on 3 areas:

Maximizing Price - The art of avoiding the discount and getting full-price every time
Selling Leadership - Sales organizations to sell at a higher price
Sales Motivation - Preparing the salesperson to win

Mark believes the success of a company depends on the success of the sales team and the sales managers. Selling on price is not selling, it's taking orders. Selling is about increasing the value the customer is going to receive which results in the price being maximized. All of this starts with the salesperson and their sales motivation & sales competency.

To learn more about Mark, visit:

Specialties:Sales Motivation, Selling a Price Increase, Sales Training on Price and Profit, Working with purchasing departments, procurement teams and professional buyers. Maximizing your potential and profit with each customer, Professional selling skills and the ability to be a true sales leader

Direct download: CTED_196.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:56pm EDT

Joe Zente is the President/CEO of Z3 Performance Development, Inc. He founded Z/Three in 1999 with a singular vision -- to help forward-thinking entrepreneurs to exceed their personal and business goals. Joe is the developer of the UnCommon Sense© Formula for Success, a process that has been used by hundreds of CEOs and presidents to transform their culture and to create consistent, predictable, scalable, sales organizations The Formula has also been deployed internationally by thousands of managers, salespeople, service providers and subject matter experts to dramatically improve their selling effectiveness and results. His approach is practical and no-nonsense. Joe speaks nationally on Building World Class Sales Organizations, has written hundreds of articles and eBooks, and blogs monthly at

Joe understands business. He has directed Fortune 500 divisions, led nine companies, founded six and sold two. His experience includes more than 30 years leading international firms involved in a variety of products, services, technologies and programs. Joe has led companies with products ranging from complex capital equipment and technologies to fish, engineering services, software, sporting goods, and conceptual services. He is intimately familiar with the challenges faced by turn-around executives, hyper-growth firms, and large multi-nationals. A serial entrepreneur, author, speaker and investor, Joe directs Z/Three in helping many of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs to take their personal and business performance to the next level.

Direct download: CTED_195.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:27am EDT

Garrison Wynn has presented to some of the world's most effective leaders and business developers, from multibillion-dollar manufacturers and national associations to top New York Stock Exchange wire houses. He has a background in manufacturing, telecomm, and financial services and toured as a professional stand-up comedian. In his teens, Garrison worked with Magnavox and baseball legend Hank Aaron to promote the world's first video gaming system, and by age 27 he became the youngest department head in a Fortune 500 company's history. He researched and designed processes for 38 locations nationwide and developed and marketed products still being sold in 30 countries. He is the author of the bestseller The REAL Truth About Success, has contributed weekly to The Washington Post, and has coauthored with Stephen Covey. His award-winning success tools receive high praise, but his greatest strength is a magnetic live performance that keeps him in high demand, with more than 600 inquiries and 100 speaking dates per year.

Listen to this episode of "Cool Things Entrepreneurs Do" and hear his conversation with Thom Singer about how he got into the business of speaker, his advice for those who want to create their own business, and why making sales a priority is paramount to entrepreneurial success.

Direct download: CTED_194.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:13am EDT

Melissa J Nixon wants you to live a courageous life. She is an Executive Leadership Coach, Courageous Life Mentor and more!

She is excited to be living out her dream and fulfilling her life’s mission of helping women to live and lead courageously. As a result, women around the world are being inspired and taking action toward their own passion and purpose.

She is a professional speaker, trainer, & leadership coach who spends her days connecting with the hearts of women and pushing them past their perceived boundaries to achieve goals that were once just a thought. She is in total belief that there is so much more beyond where we are currently! However, we have to be willing to take risks and go after it. We have to be willing to do it again. Even as successful women can sometimes allow fear and/or complacency to creep in to prevent them from take that next power move. It happens to the women with masters degrees, Phd’s, 6 figure businesses, and even 7 figure businesses. Dealing with fear, complacency, and stagnation does not elude salary grades, titles, or your net income. It merely comes with the territory of being…human!

Melissa spent years in Corporate America as a HR/Organizational Development leader helping leaders navigate large scale change. However, she quickly realized that transformational change doesn’t happen with the most well thought out plan. It happens in the heart of a leader. It happens in the conversations behind closed doors connecting with leaders on their boldness, fears, frustrations, and how to move from where they are to where they want to be.

Throughout her journey she found that there are so many women who are like her. They believe that there’s more to this current experience called life too. They want to live differently. Lead differently. They want to experience more joy and fulfillment.

In this episode Melissa shares her journey and encourages people to be courageous.

http://www.courageouslifeacademy. com

Direct download: CTED_193.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:42am EDT

Jon Petz is a motivational keynote speaker and master of ceremonies who uses humor engaged audiences.

Clients invite him back again and again – and audience members can’t wait to transform his ideas and strategies into real-world change in their lives and careers.

Ever meet one of those people born to be on a stage? That’s Jon – and that’s why he left a highly successful career as a Vice President of sales to return to his real passion as a professional speaker & corporate magician. After that? There was no turning back. With a unique skillset, a purposeful presence, and the kind of energy that seems to transform a room – he gets audiences on their feet, and to the edge of their seats hungry for the innovative insights and game-changing solutions he shares. As a funny motivational speaker, event or conference emcee or corporate magician, he wow’s the crowd. He uses his magic and inspiring stories to bring home the very real belief that we all have the opportunity to be significant each day, and that small moments matter in business and in life.

Jon Petz is not a corporate magician who decided to turn “keynote speaker.” He’s a relatable “everyman” who has worked in a warehouse, flipped burgers, driven a forklift, sat in the cubicle, made cold calls, managed in corporate America, competitively grew a highly successful sales career, and managed a national sales team across 52 offices. His ability to draw on these experiences and more allow him to resonate with audience members with humor – and the human touch. With Jon, there’s no “Diva” or drama. And that? Makes him a favorite for corporate audiences, event planners, and leadership teams. Bottom line? He gets people. From all backgrounds, positions, and diversities – and they get him because when they laugh, they learn more. When he connects from the heart because he’s walked a time in their ‘shoes’ – they pay attention. They can see themselves in the answers. And that? Makes all the difference.

When he’s not on the road wowing audiences and empowering others to create significance, he is at home with the real stars of the show, his beautiful wife and daughters.

Direct download: CTED_192.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:35am EDT

Manley Feinberg is a mountain adventurer turned professional speaker.

After 18 years of business leadership, adventures around the world, and professional speaking, Manley is ready to help you reach your next summit.

Manley is recognized as an award winning speaker and Information Technology leader, business expert and author, published outdoor adventure photographer, and professional musician.

During Manley’s eleven years with Build-A-Bear Workshop, his leadership direction helped take the revolutionary retail concept from 40 stores to over 400 worldwide, realizing revenue growth from 55 million to over 474 million. He built an award winning reputation for implementing technology solutions and support that produced results for the business every day.

Manley’s inspirational keynotes are brought to life through his exceptional photography and riveting stories culminating from a lifetime of adventure through 25 countries, to over 400 outdoor destinations. Manley vividly shares compelling lessons from his adventure and leadership experiences in a way that allows you to relate to your mountains. He will have you hanging beside him surviving in the Himalayas, struggling to communicate in Uzbekistan, and immediately transfer the experience to moving you forward in your courageous efforts.

Direct download: CTED_191.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:19pm EDT

Sometimes entrepreneurs feels stuck. They work hard and yet they feel they cannot get their career or business to the next level. Part of this is that we are never satisfied and we fail to see our own successes for what they are, and we move the goal farther out all the time.

In this episode Thom Singer shares his own story of feeling stuck, even with a successful business and he shares ideas that may inspire you if you can relate to that desire to get to the next level (without a clear path on how to get there). 

Direct download: CTED_190.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:20am EDT

When Christa Tuttle takes on a task, she goes in 100%. On September 10, 2001 she made a decision to start her own marketing company, and the next day the whole world changed with 9/11. In the face of a changing world, she pushed forward and started her business.

Fifteen years later she has a team of 15 people and leads a fast growing boutique marketing firm focused on high tech companies.

Prior to founding Launch Marketing, Christa worked for Austin venture capital firm TL Ventures, where she managed marketing in-house and lent her expertise to its portfolio companies, helping them develop marketing plans and bring their first products to market. Before that, she led a marketing team at enterprise software company Trilogy, where her team successfully drove more than 50% of the lead generation.

Christa is an active member of the Austin community, where she regularly mentors a tightly knit group of entrepreneurs, and has served on the board for the Technology Entrepreneurs’ eXchange. She has contributed time to organizations like Entrepreneurs Organization, Austin 360 Summit, Forum for Women Entrepreneurs, Austin Symphony BATS, Breakthrough and Big Brothers Big Sisters. Christa is a California native, has lived in Austin for more than 20 years, and has loved riding horses since she was a child. She holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration with a minor in Psychology from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.

Direct download: CTED_189.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:55am EDT

Marcus Segui is the Founder of Tintico, a new luggage company. Marcus started his career in finance in New York City, then quit to take a year off to travel and learn Spanish. He settled in Bogota, Colombia and ultimately launched a real estate company there that was backed by the Colombia's largest private equity company. He's an entrepreneur well versed in international business and what it takes to launch a company abroad.

His current venture involved leaving behind 10 years of real estate to start a luggage company because, as he said, “I like travel bags, the suitcase is the hardest one, international business is fun for me, and I want to build a travel brand that inspires authentic, purposeful, boundary-pushing travelers.”

He’s starting a company on Kickstarter – – I was intrigued by the business model, and also his back story and knew he would be a great guest for the podcast.

Direct download: CTED_188.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:32am EDT

Over a drink with a new friend he asked "What makes you belly laugh?" and "What makes you cry?" These were not questions I expected, and I could not easily answer them.

We live in a world where most people engage in a superficial manner and we rarely ask question that get to the heart and soul. It is also hard to make friends as we get older as we are not always exposed to knowing about other people.

These questions asked by my new friend stirred my thinking. I was impressed with how open this person was to sharing his own story, which had ups and downs. His life had some hard times, and he was open about these, which allowed me to connect with him, as we all face tragic experiences in business, personal life, in our communities, etc...

In this episode I talk about my struggles to answer these questions and why that makes me wonder if I am being true to my own self and letting my human feelings inter my business dealings.

I also challenge you, the listener to ponder these questions and let me know if you quickly find the answers.

Direct download: CTED_187.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

Mark Black was born with a heart problem and had surgery while only days old. While he does not remember that, his life was full of health issues that culminated with a heart and lung transplant at age 23.

He had planned to have a career as a teacher, but after recovering from his transplant he found professional speaking and has never looked back.

Mark is the founder of The Purpose Program and CEO of Adversus Consulting, Mark Black has done a lot in 35 yrs. A professional speaker, best-selling author and success coach, Mark doesn’t just talk about overcoming
adversity, he lives it.

Mark’s experience with adversity began early in his life. By age 2 Mark
had already survived more than many deal with in a lifetime.

The lessons Mark learned in the year that followed that news he needed a transplant form the basis of his award-winning presentations, and the best-selling book “Live Life from the Heart.

Mark has inspired nearly 100,000 people across North America with his
unique brand of humor blended with a gripping life and death story.
The lessons he teaches have transformed countless lives and businesses.

Direct download: CTED_186.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:06am EDT

Jerome Wade is the Chief Epic Officer of The Epic Advantage, a global leadership development company that helps top tier professionals lead high performing people, teams and organizations.

His expertise is in Leadership Development, Performance, and Motivation. He is committed to helping people Unleash Greatness, Accelerate Opportunity, and Maximize Performance.

His company, The Epic Advantage provides solutions to the #1 challenge in business and organizational leadership as well as personal and professional performance.

He is a Keynote Speaker | Corporate Trainer | Executive Coach: and he leverages the power of story to deliver extraordinary results by masterfully designing moments that create leadership momentum. Jerome is a member of the National Speakers Association (NSA) and an international conference and corporate speaker.

Jerome makes his home in Albuquerque, NM and is an adventurist who loves white water kayaking, motocross, mtn. biking, snow boarding, climbing, scuba diving, sailing, and global adventuring.

For more info log onto or!

In this episode he shares his advice from 25 years as an entrepreneur.

Direct download: CTED_185.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:58am EDT

Mike Domitrz was always an entrepreneur. He was the kid selling lemonade or teaching swim lessons (or break dancing lessons). He became a mobile DJ, and eventually a professional speaker and leading expert on dating and sexuality.

His company has grown over two decades from a one-man show to a larger organization with several employees. Today he continues to expand and is seeking the right people to execute the roles of running his business.

In this episode Mike Domitrz shares his experiences from his first hire (his sister), to virtual assistants, to assembling a growing staff.

This topic is important for all business professionals. How we find the right people to help us matters, and most people make mistakes. Mike made plenty of mistakes, and has lots of tips on how to avoid the same pitfalls.

After 20+ years in business, Mike knows his own strengths and weaknesses, and is now getting better at putting the right people in the right seats on his bus. This episode is a valuable resource for everyone, as even solopreneurs may one day need a VA or a full time staff.

Direct download: CTED_184.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:22am EDT

A conversation in the "Cool Things Project" mastermind coaching program lead to a discussion about how taking action that pushes a person out of their comfort zone can lead to "Imposter Syndrome".

Imposter Syndrome is a term coined in the 1970s that refers to high achieving individuals who are marked by the inability to internalize their accomplishments and who have a persistent fear of being exposed as a fraud.

Many people who chase their dreams fall prey to these feeling of not deserving their success. It is not uncommon for those who are starting to achieve new levels to question if they are legitimately qualified to be a leader in their area of expertise.

Plus in a world where "Fake it til you make it" is preached all over the place, many people are uncomfortable once they go out and start to take actions. Thom Singer is not a fan of "fake it til you make it", as that sets people up for imposter syndrome. Instead he thinks people should push their limits but be realistic (to themselves and others) about their journey.

Many mistakenly think that others will come along and verify they belong in the role they are striving to fill, but there is no magic validation fairy.

If you struggle with this, or know someone who does, join in and listen to this episode of "Cool Things Entrepreneurs Do".

Direct download: CTED_183.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:32pm EDT

Thom Singer turns 50 and in the episode he shares why that is a great thing.

He covers several of the topics he wrote about on his blog in a post called "50 Things I Learned by 50"

50. There is nothing wrong with getting older. It happens no matter what, so just enjoy the stacking of experiences. We live in a youth oriented culture, but don't believe that the best years are in the past.
49. You are responsible for the choices you made in the past. Don't be embarrassed by failure, it is part of the road to success
48. Sadness and depression happen, but we rarely talk about it. Be honest with yourself and don't hide from your own feelings.
47. Treat yourself to something special on a semi-regular basis.
46. Don't hide behind "busy". Everyone is busy and it need not be your badge of honor.
45. Everyone wants to feel significant, but you can never achieve significance alone in a field. You need other people. Help them find significance and they will return the favor. Don't and you will be alone.
44. Social media is not a fad. You must have a LinkedIn profile if you are a grown up with a job. But do not mistake the number of contacts with the number of people how know, like, trust, respect, and understand who you are in your soul.
43. Read the Wall Street Journal. The economy (good or bad) does impact your career... no matter your company, industry, job title, etc... Do not stick your head in the sand.
42. Embrace Change.
41. Don't worry too much about what others think about you.
40. Everyone has an ego. Tread lightly as to not bruise them.
39. Nothing produces results as much as taking action. Be a person of action.
38. Don't gossip. What you say will always find its way back to the person.
37. People do business with people they know, like, and trust. In our social media crazy world this is more true than ever.
36. Jealous and petty people are just part of life.
35. Say "please" and "thank you". It will make you stand out from the crowd.
34. When you need help, ask someone.
33. Having written goals is an important step you achieving your dreams and remain focused.
32. Over using credit cards will stall your financial future.
31. A supportive spouse is so important. Be one and honor the one you have.
30. A true friend is excited for you about any event that makes you happy. Show that high level of excitement when those around you have positive events.
29. True friends are rare and should be cherished. Those people who are "Forever Friends" (the ones that never judge you too harshly or fire you over minor things) are worth their weight in gold.
28. No job is secure. Have a "plan B" and don't be surprised if you have to pivot.
27. Always find the best in other people. Do not focus on their flaws. Everyone has flaws, so what.
26. You are not what you drive or what you wear. Do not judge others by their cars, clothes or zip code.
25. You are a "brand". No matter what you do it impacts your reputation.
24. Luck does not happen by accident.
23. Start saving money when you are young. 10% of your income should always go to your 401K. I didn't do this, but envy my friends who were disciplined in this area.
22. Dedicate time to think about your future. Know what success looks like so that you will recognize it when it happens.
21. You cannot love your kids too much! And they grow up too fast.
20. Treat everyone with respect. You never know when they might circle back into your life.
19. If you are not knowledgeable about wine...Don't fake it.
18. Be-friend your competitors. Many of them are great people who will help you be more successful.
17. Regardless of your political beliefs - attend a presidential inauguration once in your lifetime. The whole thing is very cool.
16. Find a mentor. The right guide makes the journey easier.
15. Be a mentor. Few things are as wonderful as helping others avoid the same pitfalls that held you back
14. Staying physically fit gets harder as you get older. But do it anyway.
13. You do not have to be smart to be successful. Tenacity trumps intelligence.
12. Having a strong network of professional contacts is the best career safety net. But you have to work on it always, as out of sight is out of mind.
11. Read a lot of books, magazines, websites, blogs and newspapers. Knowledge is power.
10. Writing a book is hard work. Promoting a book is harder work.
9. Develop your public speaking skills. Join a Toastmasters group and participate actively for two years.
8. There is no substitute for integrity.
7. Have friends who challenge you to be a better person.
6. If you know someone who wrote a book, read it. The biggest compliment you can give an author is to read what they wrote.
5. Helping others always comes back to benefit you. Make others a priority and people will notice (and vice versa).
4. Find a good lawyer, accountant and banker before you need them.
3. Learn to cook. Life is better when you have good food.
2. Opportunities exist. You just have to look for them. Don't whine, go make success happen.


#1 - Those who have achieved REAL success in life (financially, emotionally and spiritually) will never criticize your dreams and aspirations. Instead they will look for ways to share their own experiences to help lift you up to higher levels. Successful people are rarely jealous and welcome the achievements of others.


Direct download: CTED_182.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:23pm EDT

Danny O'Connell is a partner at Benefits Resources Group (BRG) in Texas. Serving businesses and individuals with regard to their benefit, insurance, and personal planning needs, he has had a successful career for more than 10 years.

One of his new ventures is in major fund-raising for organizations such as universities and other organizations. They have developed several niche programs which can save small and medium size companies tremendously while maintaining their benefits.

One of the most important pieces of his job is educating those he works with and keeping his clients abreast of changes in the laws and policies. Danny is dedicated member of many associations in his industry, including Million Dollar Round Table (MDRT).

He is a husband, father, and active member of his community.

Download this episode to hear Danny O'Connell's career journey and his advice for others who want to have a successful career in insurance (or any industry).

Direct download: CTED_181.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:53am EDT

With a background in marketing and event planning, Jessica Levin, who is a bit of a futurist, is best known as a connector of people. She has a reputation as the “Go To” person regarding marketing, meeting and event design and anything involving trends in technology. Jessica uses social networking tools to build and strengthen both personal and business relationships and teaches others how to embrace social media as a way to create both corporate and personal brands.

Jessica’s professional background includes experience in the professional services, association management and industrial marketing. Her strategic approach to marketing includes a mix of both traditional marketing channels and web 2.0 tactics. She focuses on creating, strengthening and maintaining relationships for business and for the people that drive them.

When it comes to events, she considers herself an event re-imaginer and helps organizations change the way they look at the typical meeting or convention. From a technology perspective, Jessica encourages a "no-fear zone" learning environment which encourages people to embrace technology at their own pace.

Jessica is also the author of "Perfect Pairings: The Art of Connecting People"

Check out this episode where she shares her journey of entrepreneurship and advice for those who want to have their own business.

Direct download: CTED_180.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:31am EDT

Matt Wolski jumped right from college into being an entrepreneur. Now over three years later he has hit his stride with several ventures in both the marketing / branding space and the restaurant / bar world.

Found Media Group is a full service marketing and public relations firm focused on providing a one-stop solution for the entrepreneurial community. Our services range through the areas of web presence, graphic design, social media, multimedia, messaging and public relations. Matt found a niche serving solopreneurs and small business owners providing big-firm services to those who cannot afford the rates of giant agencies.

He also owns Parlor & Yard, an Austin, Texas bar in the popular West 6th Street area and will soon be opening a seafood restaurant called Coast.

Download this episode for a good view of how an aggressive entrepreneurial millennial has created his own path in the world and is inspiring others (including his own 59 year old father) to take the leap to a self-directed career.

Direct download: CTED_179.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:57pm EDT

When an "expert" tells you your idea won't work, that might be good advice... or it might be crap. Sometimes you have to follow your heart if you want to find real success in your career and life.

Lucille Ball was told by acting coaches to find a different line of work, Oprah's boss in a local television market said she did not have what it took to make it in TV. The list of successful people who were told by experts that they could never reach their goals is long.

When someone gives you council to abandon your dream you need to make sure you understand what they are really saying. They are telling you that in their own experience they have not seen success in the path you are going, but they are not God. Only you will know if your journey is the right one.

In this episode Thom Singer talks about this topic of being steered off track by well meaning experts. He also shares the details of his own latest project, a One Man Show, and how there are people who roll their eyes at his project. But he is pushing forward anyway. He admits it might never become real, but it is too early to stop the pursuit.

Be realistic, but do not quit too soon or you may be leaving greatness behind.

Direct download: CTED_178.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

Seeking knowledge is not enough, we need to find mastery in our careers. Knowledge is not power, but a commodity. We can all find knowledge by doing a search on our phone. Success is there for people who become great in the right things and then take action.

To be leaders we need to show others that we have a compelling vision of the future. While we might have to pivot along the way, no goals or vision means we are adrift. People with no goals will often get lost in over thinking and research, and in a world where action is king, we lose if we are not moving forward.

You have to master yourself, your understanding of you clients, your sales / marketing, your relationships with your people, and you must master your systems. Those who do all of these pop up to the next level.

But chaos reigns for too many entrepreneurs. We have to stop the madness and stop hiding behind stress and "busy".

Focus on actions in sales, customer service and innovation.

Direct download: CTED_177.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:27am EDT

Success in the conference game can be a challenge. The demands are getting higher and the budgets seem to be getting smaller. The worst thing about having an amazing event is that the client will want a better one next year! One of the secrets to conference success is having someone who can hold everything together while adding extra value.

Warwick Merry is an accomplished business person, exhibitor, performer, host and facilitator. His clients call him “Australia’s best MC”.

Part of his continued success in the conference business is his authentic and engaging approach. As host, speaker, facilitator, MC, working with you to help plan the event or some combination of all of these, Warwick’s total focus is on your success.

His experience working the breadth of Australia and around the globe in industries such as: IT, Financial, Manufacturing, Pharmaceutical, Entertainment, HR and Telecommunications means that you have experience on your side. Whether you are planning a gala dinner, a five day international reward and recognition trip or something in between, Warwick can add experience, value and success to your event.

Direct download: CTED_176.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:14am EDT

Ever Gonzalez is a serial entrepreneur and is currently the Co-Founder
and CEO of Outlier, an online publication, physical coworking
space, conference series, and podcast geared toward
the dynamic community of startups and entrepreneurs.

After years of working for others and being frustrated by how bosses can be sometimes, Ever felt he could do it better. After starting and selling several companies he now has Outlier and specializes in running events, hosting mastermind retreats, running a podcast, and other activities to help entrepreneurs find their path to success.

In this episode Ever Gonzalez shares his journey and gives advice for those who want to create their own path. @_EverGonzalez @OutlierOnAir

Direct download: CTED_175.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:23am EDT

Tim Storer leads strategic programs for Procter & Gamble, building ambitious organizations and creating collaborative external partnerships. He is also a board member for Siemen's PLM World.

In this episode we talk about how attending industry events can be a "cheat code" for success in your business. Too often people struggle to reinvent the wheel, but those who are engaged with others in similar jobs, they can learn short cuts from each other. Tim has great advice for people who are going to attend events for the first time, as some people are naturally good at participating in conferences, while others are never noticed at all.

The ROI of attending PLM World, or any conference, comes from planning ahead for conversations. Think of the areas you need to learn and have questions in your mind so that you can better navigate any encounter you have with other attendees or vendors/sponsors.

Tim is passionate in his own career about innovating how organizations work and entrepreneurship in the corporate world. This episode is a must listen for anyone wh wants to find more ways to succeed in their job.

Direct download: CTED_174.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:43pm EDT

Entrepreneurs often have to reassess their customer base, enter new markets and pivot the direction of their company. Jessica Pettitt has lived this several times in her business career. Jessica is a speaker and consultant in the world of colleges and universities who has recently added new clients in the corporate and association world. While being a speaker in one market might seem the same as presenting in others, the reality is that a major move to a new environment can be a lot of work.

Jessica is an expert in diversity training and handling difficult situations in the workplace. She assists people within organizations to have conversations that matter and to get more done with the resources they have available now.

In this episode she shares her entrepreneurial journey and gives advice for those who are both looking to pivot and who need to make changes in how they are dealing with any issues in their work environment.

Direct download: CTED_173.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:22am EDT

Josh Packard is a sociologist who studies institutional participation in America at the University of Northern Colorado. He focuses on religious, professional and voluntary associations. He is a sought after speaker and trainer for corporate, religious and non-profit organizations. His research has appeared in numerous academic and trade publications, and he is the author, with Ashleigh Hope, of Church Refugees.

Josh is also the head of the Social Research Lab at the university. It is though this role that he gets to merge his academic career with his entrepreneurial side.

In this episode Josh shares his journey to being both a researcher and an entrepreneur and gives valuable advice for anyone who wants to be more entrepreneurial in a more traditional job environment.

Direct download: CTED_172.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:42am EDT

Jon Jarrett is the director of engineering technology and systems at Orbital ATK. When others say their job is not "rocket science"....Jon's job is rocket science.

In this episode Jon shares his successful career journey and talks about how being entrepreneurial inside a job is key to success. He has held a variety of positions in his career, and discusses the importance of mentors and networking.

Jon is also on the board of PLM World. PLM World is an independent, not-for-profit organization, with the mission of being the voice of the user in providing an open forum for the exchange of ideas within the Siemens Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) Software product environment.

Being involved in an industry group has proved to be paramount to the success that Jon has found in his career. In this conversation he talks about how he got involved, why he continues to be engaged in the organization, and ways that attendees at the 2016 PLM World Conference (or those attending any event) can maximize their experience.

Direct download: CTED_171.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:08am EDT

Michael O'Neal was guest number seven on the "Cool Things Entrepreneurs Do" Podcast. He is continuing to do great things as a leader in the world of podcasting, and his show is has continued to be a top ranked business podcast.

In this episode Michael shares his thoughts on being a solopreneur, and tells more of his own journey to success. He founded his podcast as a way to reach people and talk with people in a variety of industries. His show has not only become a core part of his business, but it has opened up countless doors and allowed him to build his network and brand.

It is rarely easy to be a solopreneur. There are many upsides, but there is many tough parts as well. His efforts to reach success has taken a long time. You cannot just create courses to get rich on a new platform without having experience. Too many people jump on the band wagon of Periscope (or other new tools) and try to sell classes on how to get rich, without having ever gotten rich using that tool.

Michael would not want to be launching a podcast in today's environment. It is so competitive, and it is hard to convert people to listen in a world with so many people hosting shows. It is very noisy out there. His show is about to hit the three year mark, and the Solopreneur Hour now has nearly 3 million download (and is growing). He wants people to know it is slow growth if you want to reach success, and you need to honor what has come before (for podcasts, it is old media: TV, radio, film, etc...). As the skill sets of podcasters gets better, the more people will listen to podcasts.

This is a great conversation that will inspire you to embrace your own journey as an entrepreneur, solopreneur, or anyone with the entrepreneurial spirit.

Direct download: CTED_170.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:32am EDT

Julia Taylor Cheek is the CEO and Co-Founder of EverlyWell, a digital health startup that offers consumer-ordered diagnostic tests and easy-to-read results.

Prior to founding Everly Well in summer 2015, Julia was the Vice President of Corporate Development and Strategy at MoneyGram International, a $1.5B company that operates in 200 countries. As the youngest VP in the company, she worked for MoneyGram’s CFO for several years, leading multiple corporate transactions, restructuring projects, and special projects for the CEO. Before that, she served as the founding Director of Strategy and Operations at the George W. Bush Institute and played a key role in building the organization from just a handful of employees to the Presidential Center that you see today at Southern Methodist University.

After attending Vanderbilt, Julia started her career in management consulting at Deloitte and went on to earn an MBA with high distinction from Harvard Business School. She also is a former multiple World Champion equestrian, officially retiring in 2009. In her free time, she can be found at local coffee houses or any place with good queso.

If you are thinking about making the leap to being an entrepreneur, you need to listen to this episode, as Julia shares a lot of great advice for anyone who has that calling to start a company.

Direct download: CTED_169.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:31pm EDT

Brian Kurth is the founder and CEO of Revere Software ( He and his company work with associations, alumni associations, large non-profits and corporations to connect knowledge seekers with subject matter experts.

In 2001 Brian was in traffic wondering if there was a better way than fighting the uphill battle of the "corporate grind". A year later he started his first company. Today, with his third business, he loves the freedom. He is excited about Revere and what they bring to their clients, and you can tell in hearing his story that he has a true passion for being and entrepreneur.

Direct download: CTED_168.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:32am EDT

Eliz Greene is an expert helping people get past being busy and stressed while helping them become more productive.

She comes from a family of entrepreneurs, as both her parents owned small businesses, and her first jobs were working in each of those companies. After college she spent time in the insurance business and non-profit sector, but soon launched out on her own to start a dance studio.

In 2000 everything changed. Eliz suffered a massive heart attack while 7 months pregnant with twins. Both she and her daughters survived, but it changed her life forever.

For more than a decade Eliz has been a leading expert educating people on heart health and how to manage stress. Through her work she discovered there was little data on job stress and the different ways men and women deal with the pressures of work and life.

Eliz Greene has now embarked on a multi-phase study and the results are fascinating. She now speaks to association and corporate audiences on managing stress and handling the facade of work / life balance in a world that rewards being busy (often regardless of the results).

If you have ever felt overly busy and stressed out you will relate to the discussion on this episode.

Direct download: CTED_167.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:55am EDT

Bejan Faramarzi was born in Boston and raised in San Antonio. He went to UT Austin where he started off in Business and Pre-pharmacy. After taking an improv class and meeting a fellow filmmaker, he became passionate about film and he graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in Theater. He then went on to shoot films in Los Angeles, New York, Montreal and is now primarily based out of Austin, Texas.

This is a great episode as you can hear his passion for being a film maker and he has great stories about his journey.

His company, Space Fire Films is in the process of making their first feature length project. In addition to having a new start up, he is also raising money to produce the film (Check out the kickstarter campaign. Thom invested right after the interview)

No matter your industry you can be inspired by those entrepreneurs who have a passion for their field of work. Bejan is a great example of someone we will look back on in ten years and say... We first heard of him on Cool Things Entrepreneurs Do.

Direct download: CTED_166.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:44am EDT

The world of work is changing. With upwards of 50% of the workforce moving to contractors or solopreneurs, what do people need to know?

Marc Miller is the founder of Career Pivot which helps Baby Boomers design careers they can grow into for the next 30 years. Marc authored the book Repurpose Your Career: A Practical Guide for Baby Boomers published in January 2013. He also authored the book Personal Branding for Baby Boomers: What it is, How to Manage It and Why It’s No Longer Optional in September 2015.

He has been featured on, US News and World Report, CBS Money-Watch and PBS’ Next Avenue. Career Pivot was selected for the Forbes Top 100 Websites for your Career. Marc has made six career pivots himself, serving in several positions at IBM in addition to working at two successful Austin, Texas startups, teaching math in an inner-city high school and working for a local non-profit.

Learn more about Marc and Career Pivot by visiting the Career Pivot Blog or follow Marc on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn

Direct download: CTED_165.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:59pm EDT

April 1, 2009 I was laid off from my corporate marketing job. It was the height of the great recession and other employment options were non-existent. On that day I decided to follow my dream of self-employment and begin my creating my own career path that would not tie my future job status to someone else's company.

Becoming a professional speaker and master of ceremonies was a long-time dream, and something I had planned to eventually pursue. With a young family to support, making such a leap had seemed too scary, but with no other employment options I began to build my own solopreneur existence, and I have never looked back.

As the job market continues to be awkward, there are more and more people who are making the move to becoming solopreneurs (some by choice, others by circumstance). This is not an easy existence, and while I have worked hard and had some great opportunities, each day I start over at the bottom of the hill.

I have learned a lot in seven years. Here a few important lessons I have discovered.

Eight Tips For Solopreneurs

1. You are in sales. No matter what your product or service, if you work for yourself you are responsible for revenue generation. Sales is the life-blood of every business, and to lose sight of this is a recipe for failure. Doing good work is not enough in our noisy world. Anyone can access social media and claim credibility in your industry, so thinking reputation alone will generate new business will limit your future. Invest the time to learn sales and marketing skills, and then take action. Selling is hard work (that is why sales professionals in the largest companies earn so much money), so be ready for the time and energy you will have to put in to generate results.

2. Most friends in your network will not help you. We are taught that all opportunities come from people, and thus we falsely believe the people in our networks will refer us business or hire us to serve their company's needs once we launch. The reality is that most people you know are not thinking about you or your business. While people generally intend to help others, the reality is many of your friends are caught up in their own day-to-day lives and do not remember you are trying to build your company. Do not expect a huge line of people who will be active in supporting your efforts.

3. A few contacts are worth their weight in gold. While not everyone will be a recourse to help connect your business to success, there will be some people who will move mountains to see your find new customers. These rare souls who go out of their way to refer you, promote you via word-of-mouth and social media, and who buy your products (sometimes when they do not even have a need for your service). The people are to be cherished. The weirdest part is that the ones you think will be your supporters often will disappoint you, and the most random friend will become your champion.

4. Get involved in your industry association. Solopreneurs are busy and often feel they do not have the time or the money to participate in their industry trade groups. I found my involvement with the National Speakers Association to be the key to my success as a speaker. It is not that my membership in the association got me any direct business, but my activity exposed me to information and to other people who were living their lives in the business. Having friends who are successful in your area of expertise means you do not have to reinvent the wheel.

5. Watch your expenses closely. Too many who come out of corporate jobs are used to large budgets and not experienced at being the person who has to pay all the bills. I have seen too many solopreneurs who believed that investing a lot of money on websites, coaching, database programs, marketing videos, and other expensive services would bring about fast success. I spent as little as possible on everything when I was starting out, and would upgrade to higher levels as I could afford it. This meant that I did not always have the best of everything (and often used other providers who were just starting out), but my realistic attention to cash flow kept the expenses in check.

6. Say "Yes" to Networking. I find a lot of small business professionals and solopreneurs who are obsessed with protecting their time. They skip networking in one-on-one situations or at larger events with the rationalization that they committed to working on their business. They worry about their calendar activities to a level that they are missing out on opportunities. While most people you will encounter will not become valuable resources, some will have the ability to change your future. You cannot pre-judge events or people, so make it a habit of saying yes to being involved with others and over the long run it will pay off. And remember, networking is a long-term thing, nobody is going to help you the day they meet you!

7. Make sure your family is on board. Being a solopreneur often means you do not get to shut off work at home. The concerns of stability and money issues can be overwhelming, and if your spouse and children are not part of your journey, it will create problems. While some people have their significant other actively involved in their business, this wont be ideal for everyone. Regardless of if they work with you or not, you have to keep them in the loop as to how things are going. The more I communicate with my wife about how things are going in my business, the more she seems to understand what burdens I face on a daily basis.

8. Help others win. Be the person who is actively working to be a catalyst for success. Find small ways to serve other solopreneurs in their journey to build their businesses. Do more than "like" a post (that only shows "I saw this"), but instead re-post and promote things others are doing (this shows you are trying to help). While they wont all return the favor, never keep score. Find ways to promote the businesses of people you know (and some you don't know) if you believe in them. Every action you take is a brick in the permanent wall of your reputation, and those who work for more than self-interests will find more people will do the same for them.

Studies have shown that 40% of the workforce will work "solo" at some point, doing project work, consulting, or building their own business. That is a big shift in the way we all will view careers. The long-term company job might become the exception. You may be a solopreneur, but you cannot really do it all alone. Build a community of people who will bring mutual support to all. Self-focus will limit your long term success.

Direct download: CTED_164.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:59pm EDT

Justin Christianson is the best selling author of Conversion Fanatic: How to double your customers, sales and profits with A/B testing and is a 13 year veteran of digital marketing having worked on hundreds of profitable campaigns. A self proclaimed numbers junky with a firm belief that the numbers don’t lie, has a knack for finding holes in marketing campaigns and offering simple solutions to quickly plug them, effectively improving the results. An avid student of marketing and business, he firmly believes that you must continue to improve daily in order to stay ahead and succeed.

In this episode of Cool Things Entrepreneurs Do he shares his personal journey from a small town electrician to digital entrepreneur.

Direct download: CTED_163.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:50am EDT

Patrick Jovin is part of an entrepreneurial family. Mom, dad, brothers, a cousin, and his fiance are all working together. Thom called them "The Partridge Family of Entrepreneurship"

ogether they run Tropiceel and market the Naturulz natural pain products.

As he grew up his parents were always running and growing companies, so it made sense for Patrick and his brothers to join the family business. As a kid he chased the dream of being a professional golfer, but today he is an entrepreneur who is taking a small business and making it a much much bigger company.

This episode the shares the journey and how they are growing their company and taking their products national.

Direct download: CTED_162.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:11am EDT

Chris Thompson is a dynamic personality, endurance athlete and CEO of truBrain, a venture-backed neurotechnology startup and developer of the world&rsquo;s first nootropic drink. <br/><br/>He built the company based on productivity, and has a great story about transitioning from a corporate executive position into the world of startups. He is a perfect guest for a show like &quot;Cool Things Entrepreneurs Do&quot;.<br/><br/>Chris discusses his journey and shares amazing tips on entrepreneurship. He's a true example and disciple of the Lean Startup Methodology coined by Silicon Valley Icon, Eric Ries. Chris started truBrain in an accelerator, assembled a team of neuroscientists, and launched a product in 5 countries all within the first month. truBrain is designed to help provide better focus, increased mental stamina and improved verbal fluency. <br/><br/>Tune into episode 161 to hear about Chris Thompson, truBrain, and his best advice for what you can do to become a strong and driven entrepreneur. <br/><br/>

Direct download: CTED_161.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:30am EDT

Mike Dilbeck is the founder of Response Ability - A Call for Courage. He is a speaker, trainer and consultant who helps people find the ability to respond to any social situation by going beyond our fear and shame to demonstrate courage in momentary choices — In organizations. In business. In community. In life. — For colleagues. For family. For friends. For strangers.

Mike was guest number two on "Cool Things Entrepreneurs Do" in October 2014. To learn more about his journey, go back and hear that interview.

On this episode Mike shares a personal challenge that he is currently facing, and it is one that all entrepreneurs, solopreneurs, and other business leaders should listen to. In January 2016 Mike was diagnosed with cancer. He has undergone one surgery and is preparing for another. As a solopreneur, who is also single, this diagnosis was scary and would leave anyone feeling very alone. Mike is dealing with the realities and the fear associated with the disease, but is also learning that he is not alone.

This episode is a powerful look at the unexpected curve balls that can hit anyone at anytime. He very candidly shares his experience and the lessons he has learned along the way.

We all assume "it wont happen to me", but when it does we need to get real very fast. From having money in the bank, to being open (or not) with our family, friends, clients, etc... to accepting help and love, Mike is on a journey and wants his experiences to help others learn, grow and prepare.

If you want to learn more about Mike and Response Ability visit his website:

To donate to help with his medical and life expenses visit the crowd share site -

Mike not only teaches people about courage, he is living with courage in his own life each day.

Direct download: CTED20160.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:16pm EDT

There is more to networking than sending a LinkedIn request or reading someone's SnapChat. Real relationships lead to opportunity, but too often in business we get stuck at pre-judging the value of others and we fail to cultivate long-term and mutually-beneficial connections.

In this episode Thom Singer talks about the how and why of getting more engaged in the association and business events that we attend.

Direct download: CTED_159.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:05pm EDT

Motivation and inspiration matter for entrepreneurs, solopreneurs, business leaders and anyone else. The idea of motivating employees gets push back, as people think that the whole idea is fluffy. Remember Chris Farley on Saturday Night Live and his skit about the motivational speaker who lived in a van down by the river? It was funny, but it did damage to the idea of motivation and the profession of motivational speakers. Many like to lambaste the concept of motivation and inspiration... but I believe it matters.

What is the opposite of motivation? De-motivation? So those who think motivation is useless.... are you seeking the opposite? While a motivation speech or an inspirational book wont forever change your life, consistent doses of things that fire you up will help you stay on track to reach your long-term success.

In this episode Thom Singer shares his personal struggles with staying motivated and dealing with issues that keep him from performing at his best. He also shares six tips to help you get focused on your own ways to get out of the rut so many find themselves in. Motivation matters and being around people who inspire you is key. Thom's tips are what gets him over his sadness and create a path back to his success trip, you need to find your own things.

6 Tips for Find Motivation and Inspiration

1. Listen to music that makes you smile.

2. Identify what is holding you back and be honest with yourself.

3. Have goals (long-term and short-term), as they make it easier for you to make the hard choices that come up daily.

4 A. Volunteer for a charity or other community cause.

4 B. Help another entrepreneur find success.

5. Exercise, get enough sleep, and make good food choices.

6. Get a coach or join a mastermind group (or join the "Cool Things Project".

Direct download: CTED_158.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:10pm EDT

Tom Hunt is a TEDx Speaker, Dragon’s Den Failure And Founder of Virtual Valley a platform that connects Entrepreneurs and Rockstar Virtual Assistants with the mission of giving Entrepreneurs back 1 million hours of their time by 2018.

He left the life of London big business for a chance at creating his own entrepreneurial path and has never looked back. At the time of this interview he was on an extended visit to Poland with a friend, where they spent their days building online businesses, and nights out making friends. He is not cuffed to a desk, and loves the location freedom he has created in his business.

Hear his journey and get inspiration to follow your dreams.

Tom also sends an AWESOME weekly marketing tip to the legends that sign up here.
Twitter: @tomhuntio


Direct download: CTED_157.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:19am EDT

Nellie Akalp is an entrepreneur and legal business expert. She is an interesting guest on the podcast and shares nuts & bolts tips for our entrepreneurial community.

Nellie is a mom of four children who is married to her husband and business partner of 18 years. She and her husband started their first online legal document filing service in 1997 in their small apartment living room after purchasing a domain name for $100. In 2005 that company was acquired by Intuit for $20 million.

They soon found out that the corporate way of Intuit was not a good fit for them so they stepped down from the previous company and took a few years off. Too motivated to retire young, the couple got back to work in 2009 and launched where they help entrepreneurs start, grow and maintain their ventures. Throughout her career, Nellie has formed well over half a million LLCs for entrepreneurs across many industries.

Nellie shares tips on how to legally start a business at Forbes, Entrepreneur, Mashable, Huffington Post and more. She would love to share some info for your entrepreneurial community about topics like business structure basics, why incorporate, what state to incorporate, when to incorporate, etc and/or just chat about her entrepreneurial story to inspire others to go after their business dreams.

Direct download: CTED_156.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:14am EDT

Tim Sanders is a multi-time best selling author, speaker and business consultant. Thom Singer has known Tim for over a decade and this episode is two old friends catching up and talking about sales and success.

Sanders has just released a new book, Dealstorming. Those in B2B businesses know that it takes a lot to get complex sales completed, and Tim has studied the best sales professionals in the world and has come up with ways that anyone can drive sales innovation.

Sanders explains his system and shows how it has helped drive results for many companies. The book includes real world examples from major corporations along with problem finding exercises, innovation templates, and execution strategies.

Direct download: CTED_155.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:32am EDT

Many people who listen to this show often reach out wanting to know more about the "business of speaking". For the past seven years Thom Singer has been a full time professional speaker and master of ceremonies, and along the way he has seen a lot of things.

Being active in the National Speakers Association has allowed Thom to meet working professional speakers, many of whom have become his closest friends. On this episode he shares his seven tips for what you need to know if you want to speak for a fee, and he gets advice from others who were present at the 2016 NSA Winter Conference in Austin, Texas.

Tune in and hear from:

Jason LeVasseur

Liz Weber, CSP

Scott Lesnick

Shawna Suckow

Brian Walter, CSP, CPAE

Karen Jacobsen

Sylvie di Giusto

David Newman, CSP

If you want to become a professional speaker, or just speak more often as a side-business, this episode will inspire you about the business of meetings and speaking.

Direct download: CTED_154.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:23pm EDT

Collectively, Ryan Jeffery and Arman Ghosh have started a dozen companies and advise hundreds of entrepreneurs. They build businesses that solve real world problems, and equip entrepreneurs with the knowledge and guidance to succeed. Ryan has worked in both venture capital and as an operator, and Arman has built and led some of fastest growing sales and ops teams. They've been working together for the last 5 years behind the scenes of major companies, helping to launch Belly and, more recently founding 11 Roniin.

At 11 Roniin, they set out to create a better ecosystem to build companies. Together, they have built a platform that can efficiently bring ideas to market in volume and provide the best entrepreneurs with the resources they need to be successful. 11 Roniin supports these companies through a detailed, execution-focused strategy that allows their companies to leverage the best engineering, sales, marketing and ops resources to grow.

Through 11 Roniin, Ryan and Arman built a growth agency called RocketLaunch to support the startup community, which helps world changing companies grow through a comprehensive growth strategy that integrates sales, marketing, and product. Additionally, they also founded and support a philanthropic focused agency called GrowthPanda that looks to connect NPO’s to corporations to create a mutually beneficial partnership to better the world.

Ryan and Arman are a passionate duo that is changing the world for the better, one company at a time.

Connect with Ryan:

Twitter: @RyanCJeffery

Connect with Arman:

Twitter: @armanghosh

Direct download: CTED_153.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:52am EDT

Steve Hughes is the President of Hit Your Stride, LLC, a communications company that helps people look and sound smart when they talk. He’s the author of the book Captivate: Presentations That Engage and Win Over Today’s Audiences and his speaking programs have been featured on NPR, BBC Radio, and CBS.

A former owner of a 40-person ad agency, today Steve works with leading associations, Fortune 500 companies, and top universities with 85% of his annual revenue coming from repeat clients. He holds a BA in French Literature and European History from the University of Kansas and an MBA in Marketing from Washington University in St. Louis where he won the prestigious Olin Cup.

This episode is a great example of how and why people matter if you want to build a business.

Direct download: CTED_152.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:32am EDT

  1. FSpeaker, author, entrepreneur and recovering academic Jill Schiefelbein is The Dynamic Communicator™. From analyzing classified documents obtained from military raids of terrorist camps to assess jihad messaging strategies, to starting and managing an online education office serving 60,000+ students, to her own entrepreneurial ventures, Jill successfully creates and executes communication strategies that help organizations acquire and retain clients.

    Jill is uniquely positioned to help you and your business utilize dynamic communication to accelerate results. She is co-author of Business and Professional Communication in the Global Workplace, is a contributing writer for Entrepreneur, and her first company, Impromptu Guru, is an official video partner with Entrepreneur Network. Learn more at and follow Jill on Twitter @dynamicjill.

    Listen as Thom and Jill chat about her journey as an entrepreneur and hear her sage advice for all who want to venture out on their own.
Direct download: CTED_151.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:34am EDT

On this short episode Thom Singer recaps his excitement about hosting the show and celebrates 150 episodes.

He also talks about the meaning of Compounded Generosity and shares the details of the 9th annual fundraiser for the "Kate Singer Endowment for Cranio-Facial Research""

If you have ideas on how to make the next 150 shows even better, please reach out to Thom and share your thoughts.

Direct download: CTED_150.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:46am EDT

Customer Experience: Networking is not about collecting business cards or trying to use people. It is about creating long-term and mutually beneficial relationships.

Often fail in business when it comes to their strategy about how to engage with others as they have a flawed idea of what it means to really be committed to relationships.

How do people "feel" when they encounter you in a personal or professional setting. Too many people see life and business as a competition where they must "win". But if time after time you leave people feeling worse after spending time with you.... you will be the one who loses out.

You cannot plan or map a relationship, so you will be judged on the little actions you take consistently. Your personal brand is a promise you have made via the actions you have taken up to this point.

Make others experience a priority and ask yourself after each interaction "how did they feel after being in this conversation with me?" If the answer is unknown or negative you will not achieve your full potential over the long run.

Direct download: CTED_149.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:05am EDT

Michelle Sahr grew up in a family that owned local retail stores, including a toy store. Today she and her husband own and operate two shops in historic downtown Kent, Ohio.... one is a toy store and the other is a cheese shop.

Who didn't dream of owning a toy store as a kid? And Michelle gets to live this life every single day.

Join in and listen to this interview as she shares her entrepreneurial journey and delivers excellent advice for entrepreneurs on running their own business.

And is networking important for retail entrepreneurs? Yep. Michelle was not sure that being involved in the local community and "networking" would impact her stores, but her efforts to know others in her town has lead her to increased visibility, referrals and more business.

She also is active in the trade associations around the cheese and toy industries. By being active in these groups she gains knowledge, spots business trends, and gets real ideas she can implement in her stores.

Off The Wagon Toys -

Kent Cheesemonger -

Main Street Kent -

Direct download: CTED_148.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:14pm EDT

Tah and Kole are a husband and wife team who are doing amazing things in the world of fitness and beyond.

Kole Hansen was just named the top Beach Body instructor. With over 20,000 people leading Beach Body fitness, she is the first person to receive this prestigious designation. She has lived an eclectic life and has experienced careers in sales, communications, training, full time singer/songwriter, and as a fitness coach.

Tah Whitey is a licensed healthcare professional with over 20 years of experience in the field of Emergency Medicine, which helps to fortify and expand upon his knowledge and expertise as a Certified Fitness Trainer with International Sports Sciences Association (ISSA). He is also a rapper and Beach Body trainer.

In this episode they share their life and entrepreneurial journeys. They have both experienced ups and downs along the way, and together have found success for themselves and helping others. Beyond the body work they are helping people have breakthroughs and life changing realizations.

Direct download: CTED_147.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

Mary Baird-Wilcock is an experienced entrepreneur in the meetings industry. She has lead a successful events company, The Simplifiers, and has now taken her years of experience to start the Apprentice Program. She knows how to make internships successful for the intern and the hiring company, and is launching an amazing new offering.

In this episode Mary talks about her company and shares her passion for interns managed the "right" way. We also hear her best advice for those wanting to start their own business.

The Apprentice Program is a crowdsourced social network that helps small business entrepreneurs all over the globe better train their interns by giving them access to tap into a global network of mentors, training videos, eLearning tools and resources and more to simplify new hire training.

They are the UBER of intern training in the events industry and beyond.

Her company is running a Kickstarter right now to fund the next phase of the software build-out. They have raised $6569, 65% funded towards our 10k USD goal, 69 backers and only 8 days left to go.

Link to Kickstarter campaign:

Download Press Kit Photos here:

Mary Baird-Wilcock, CSEP - Linkedin:

Direct download: CTED_146.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:56am EDT

Getting around people who will inspire you and help you along your journey is key to any entrepreneur. It is more important if you are a solopreneur. Sometimes the people you are closest to in your life (fiends, co-workers, spouse, etc....) are not able to give you the right level of support and guidance. Thus you need to network to find your tribe.

But networking gets a bad rap. Often people who are successful turn their back on "networking" as they are tired of random people and don't believe others can or will help them. These same people were usually helped on the way up, but their own prejudices cause them to isolate in public and to protect their time to much.

Networking is simply the creation of long-term and mutually beneficial relationships where all involved can find more success. This means that choosing to be with people can have a meaningful impact on your business and career. Joining organizations, participating in community causes, taking up hobbies, and attending events are all great ways to discover new people.

Don't kid yourself, nobody is successful alone in a field. Commit to making others a priority and you will see value. Fear holds too many people back from getting involved and making connections.

Maybe the "Cool Things Project" is a good way for you to find some like-minded people.

Direct download: CTED_145.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:57am EDT

Butch Bellah is the author or "Sales Management for Dummies" and "The 10 Essential Habits of Sales Superstars", and in this episode he shares his journey from a 21 year old commissioned sales person to owner of the company.

Today Butch is an author, speaker and sales consultant. Butch and Thom discuss the importance of sales in the success of any entrepreneur. If you think a great product or service is enough to grow your company, you will fall short of reaching your goals. Selling is the oldest profession, and getting right with the idea of being a sales person is key to the success of anyone in business.

Direct download: CTED_144.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:15am EDT

Has your year gotten off to the right start? Some people go into a new year with big hopes and dreams, but by the end of January they have fallen into the same ruts and routines that plagued them the year before.

Thom Singer spends this episode talking about actions. He wants to ensure that everyone realizes that a false start does not mean the whole year has to be blah. The time is now to take small actions each week that will add up to amazing results over the long run. Thom shares three areas where he is being intentional to make changes, and by taking baby steps he is already seeing the pay off.

Make 2016 the best year for your entrepreneurial journey. Become on of the people who takes ownership of their own destiny and who takes action.

Direct download: CTED_143.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:41am EDT

Samuel Anderson is a guy on the move. He has several businesses including the popular "Mr Preneur TV" where he and two friends chronicle their lives as entrepreneurs.

He is determined to make a difference in the lives of half a million people by being an example. Originally from Lynchburg, Va, he set out on a different path. While studying Business at Longwood University, he decided it was best to withdraw and embark on a new journey. A lifetime of building another's business was not in the cards.

In this episode Sam shares the ups and downs of a career as a self made business mogul

Direct download: CTED_142.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:34am EDT

TJ Sullivan has seen the ups and downs of the lifelong entrepreneurial career in this episode we share stories of things that went well and things that went… Not so well. This is an important episode for anyone interested in creating their own path for career and life.

Direct download: CTED_141.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:50am EDT

Brooke Muldoon (CEO) and Pete Smith (COO) from Bruks Bars are the guests on this episode of "Cool Things Entrepreneurs Do". They are young entrepreneurs who are growing a business creating delicious and healthy snacks.

As passionate food lovers and fitness junkies, they live to snack. They have an active lifestyle, but always found it difficult to find nutrition bars that fit within their dietary needs — something gluten, dairy, soy and egg-free — on the go. They were tired of hunting, so they decided to make their own. It was a tall order to balance wholesome, allergen-friendly ingredients with crave-able flavor, but they were up for the challenge.

Three years later they have a growing company and are creating a lifestyle that allows them to grow a business, impact the world, and live an adventurous lifestyle.

Direct download: CTED_140.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:26pm EDT

Alex Charfen—entrepreneur, teacher, author, speaker—is on a mission.He has spent 3 decades on the front lines of entrepreneurship and business. His journey has taught him many things, but he believes he has discovered one key that could change everything for small business owners.

He is the author of The Entrepreneurial Personality Type, and has spent years helping other entrepreneurs find success.

If done right your network will mean everything.. but Alex Charfen does not believe in cold calling people to pick their brain.

In this episode Alex shares his views on entrepreneurship. Society gives labels like ADD to those who can't sit still and want to change the status quo, but there are the people who are having the largest impact on business.

Being an entrepreneur gives you options, and being opinionated lets you follow through .... Alex has a lot of opinions and this episode is a real experience. Download today!!

Direct download: CTED_139.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:44am EDT

The first show of 2016 and Thom Singer gets real with his goals, challenges, and dealing with internal emotions, etc....

This episode is about getting real in the new year and finding the direction you need to grow your career and life as an entrepreneur, solopreneur, or intrapreneur. You have to be intentional about where you want to go, and honest with yourself about any feelings and emotions that are limiting your progress.

Direct download: CTED_138.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:25pm EDT