Category Archives: LEADERSHIP

BUSINESS, LEADERSHIP, PERSONAL GROWTH

Do You Think Next and Act Now?

When I hear the words “strategic planning”, I think of a conference room or corner office rife with the posturing of egos and the regurgitation of the latest Harvard Business Review article on the subject. Theory and practice are often mutually exclusive when it comes to strategic planning. I’ve rarely experienced strategic plans that survive the first contact with reality – and reality is defined by the client. Today’s sales dynamic is evolving. Information now resides at the fingertips of a prospect. The sales person no longer holds the secret of arcane mystery – otherwise known as knowledge. Today we are collaborators, co-conspirators and transparent purveyors of services that foster and enhance the client’s business design – or we are redundant. Redundancy is followed by obsolescence.

Long-term thinking is a strategic map to the future. It is a map that includes bridges to the “next” – those landmark features, essential to the continuation of the journey. In some cases, it is a strategic call to action that comes alive through tactics played out today – tactics that support and sustain the corporate vision. Long-term thinking often has short-term implications. Business today changes tomorrow. We must be fluid, able to adapt – to assess and address threats on the horizon and find the opportunities that exists on the other side of risk.

We may think long-term, but we must act in the short-term. It is the strategies and tactics we implement today that make a difference tomorrow. As a point of caution, strategic thinking can be “leadership-speak” or a box checked by management that makes us feel and believe that we have direction, a plan and a way. Often, all we have is a piece of paper. If we don’t tie our long-term aspirations to short-term result, our plan isn’t worth the paper it’s scribbled on. To turn strategic plan from wishful fantasy to fluid map forward, “Think Next and Act Now!”

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Game ChangerBill Wooditch is a keynote speaker and peak-performance business training coach. He is a mentor and advocate for those who actively seek and are determined to make a difference in their lives and the lives of others.

He began his career with $200 to his name, a suitcase, one corduroy suit and two ties. Retreat wasn’t an option; there was only one way – Always Forward! His purpose, energy and conviction fueled his meteoric sales success. In two years, he “found a way and made a way” to become the top salesperson at Liberty Mutual – a company employing over 19,000 people at the time. Ready for the “next challenge”, he was recruited by and joined the 6th largest broker in the world, Corroon & Black (currently the Willis Group), where, for two consecutive years, he earned the distinction as the top producer in the company.

Today, he is the founder, CEO, and president of The Wooditch Group, a privately held risk management and insurance services firm. The Wooditch Group provides client-centric solutions and comprehensive risk management programs for domestic and international clients whose revenues range from $10 million to over $3 billion. He is also the founder of Think Next, Act Now!, a company that trains and mentors tomorrow’s entrepreneur today.

He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology at Purdue University and his Master’s degree in Public Administration at Penn State.

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AUTHORS, BUSINESS, LEADERSHIP, MARKETING, PERSONAL GROWTH, SALES

Geoff Blades: 5 Business and Life Lessons from Trump

In studio today by Geoff Blades, who joined us to discuss his book The Trump Presidential Playbook: A Wizard’s Path to the White House.

Geoff Blades teaches people to win. A former investment banker at Goldman Sachs and investor at the Carlyle Group, he is an author and advisor to senior Wall Street executives, CEOs and other leaders on all topics related to winning and getting what they want in their businesses, careers, and lives. You can learn more about Geoff here!

Discussion guide from my conversation with Geoff Blades:

Geoff Blades1. Business and life (and campaigns) are all about transformational leaps.

2. Business, life, and politics is a game. Why don’t people understand this? You have play. Most don’t.

3. Trump understands this is about influence.

4. FIVE KEY LESSONS FROM TRUMP:
A. Stay on point.
B. Be more skilled.
C. Powerful messaging.
D. Be yourself.
E. Play the part.

5. Geoff explains how to apply the lessons above. And yes, he explains how you can both be yourself AND play the part!

6. What are the specific skills Trump used to win the GOP nomination?

7. Can Trump win it all? It’s a new game with old rules.

Find Geoff Blades’ book here!

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AUTHORS, BUSINESS, LEADERSHIP

Jackie Dryden: Get your head out of your bottom line!

Joined in studio today by Jackie Dryden, the Chief Purpose Architect with Savage Brands, and the author of a new book called Get Your Head Out of Your Bottom Line: And Build Your Brand on Purpose!

Discussion guide from my conversation with Jackie Dryden:

1. To build a brand and a culture base on a true purpose, verses simply focusing on profits, this process normally takes three to five years.

2. Why is now the time to have a new type of conversation with business leaders about building brands on purpose?

3. Truth: Companies who lead with purpose are actually more profitable than those who focus solely on profits.

4. What can a company stand to gain from building a culture of purpose?

5. Most companies have a mission, a vision, and values. Why are these not enough? And what’s the difference?

6. How millennials and boomers are driving real change in corporate America.

7. Jackie’s three-step process: FOCUS, FILTER, FUSE!

Find Jackie Dryden’s book here:

About Jackie Dryden:

Jackie DrydenJackie is no stranger to blazing trails. She broke ground when she led one of the few woman-owned advertising firms in the male-dominated industry. She did it again when she published her unique parenting book, Just Me: What Your Child Wants You to Know About Parenting, and traveled the nation to speak about it on television and radio shows, to newspapers and magazines, and before professional and educational organizations.

Now, she’s blazing a new trail: leading a purpose revolution in corporate America. Her new business book, Get Your Head Out of Your Bottom Line, guides visionary leaders to reconnect with their true strengths through the power of purpose. The book will be released in early 2016, and already, she is shaking up C-suites as she asks today’s leaders to uncover and communicate the true reasons their companies exists—not just to make money.

With a passion for helping others discover “why” and “what for,” Jackie leads individuals and companies to understand how to better share what sets them apart.

Jackie speaks to companies, schools and organizations across the country about business strategy, personal purpose and women’s issues. She shares her wit and wisdom with groups as small as 30 to auditoriums of several thousand.

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BUSINESS, CONTRIBUTORS, LEADERSHIP, PERSONAL GROWTH

Activity rules success

When I began in sales, I sought my own form of certainty as I entered the very uncertain prospects of the world of business – a world that was foreign to me. Sales was an uncharted, vast, and unknown territory. I didn’t have a compass, but I did have a direction. The “North Star” of my future map appeared from the belief that “Activity Rules Success”. No matter the talent level of the artist, actor, or sales agent, the more purposeful, directed activity generated, the more opportunity we can bring to successful fruition.

All life is forward process or it is in decline. Life demands we risk – initiate change or adapt to it when necessary. Change is scary for some, but it is the way forward, through the fields of fear and uncertainty, into the new light of expression.

Business is a living organism comprised, directed and engaged from the minds and hearts of people. The following, from Always Forward! Discover the 7 Secrets of Sales Success, will shorten the distance and lessen the pain from where you are now and where you are determined to go in the future. It is the way through fear, and a “North Star” for increase in life:

1. Think and Do – the shorter the distance between a deliberate thought and a decisive action, the greater the chance of success in the endeavor – the opposite is also true. Some think too long and don’t do, opportunity vanishes, someone else does the taking. Some do without thinking, rush in, and fail. The victory goes to those who think and then do with decisiveness, conviction, and alacrity.

2. Time waits for no one – it is inelastic – we can’t retrieve the minutes, the hours, the days, or years we squander. Stay engaged in the present, don’t live in the past, learn from it and influence your future by applying the lessons from the experience.

3. Find a way or make a way! Resilience is the stuff that overcomes the impediments and obstacles that will appear as a challenge to our forward motion. Think creatively, act decisively, don’t quit, think and apply a new strategy, approach from another plane of the thought, and always move forward!

4. 33-1/3% of people won’t buy us, our persuasive portfolio, our sterling personality, or our product. It’s a rough-hewn law of mine that hedges against the inevitable occurrence of rejection. Rejection is a part of the game – it’s part of the bargain to move forward, but if 33-1/3% of people will never buy from us, for their reasons, that leaves 66-2/3% ripe for the approach, and perhaps open to the message. If 66-2/3% will entertain the messenger, they will listen to the message – the more activity we generate, the bigger our base of 66-2/3%…

5. Walk Away Power – don’t push a bad position, learn to walk away from a negotiation. A bad position is anything that would make you lose your self-respect. Money is often recoupable, it can be bargained away from a bad position, or risked from a bold undertaking. But, giving up your self-respect is a choice only you can make.

6. YCDGBSOYA – You Can’t Do Good Business Sitting On Your A** – you have to get out and engage with people, push away from the plastic keyboard; don’t send an email when an in person visit will tip the balance in your favor. Go with your gut feel! If it feels like you should meet with someone, then “Find a way or make a way” to get in front of them.

Remember, try not to take rejection personally. It’s a numbers game! It’s like politics: Some people will always vote with the Blue States, some with the Red – you need to win the middle and your preferred Blue or Red states. If you generate planned, directed activity consistently, turn thought to action, and find a way or make a way to move your value proposition forward, you can begin to build a forum for success. Learn when to walk away from a bad position and know when to meet with people and create the interpersonal dynamic that makes all the difference from those who win the deal and those who take home the silver or bronze medal.

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Game ChangerBill Wooditch is a keynote speaker and peak-performance business training coach. He is a mentor and advocate for those who actively seek and are determined to make a difference in their lives and the lives of others.

He began his career with $200 to his name, a suitcase, one corduroy suit and two ties. Retreat wasn’t an option; there was only one way – Always Forward! His purpose, energy and conviction fueled his meteoric sales success. In two years, he “found a way and made a way” to become the top salesperson at Liberty Mutual – a company employing over 19,000 people at the time. Ready for the “next challenge”, he was recruited by and joined the 6th largest broker in the world, Corroon & Black (currently the Willis Group), where, for two consecutive years, he earned the distinction as the top producer in the company.

Today, he is the founder, CEO, and president of The Wooditch Group, a privately held risk management and insurance services firm. The Wooditch Group provides client-centric solutions and comprehensive risk management programs for domestic and international clients whose revenues range from $10 million to over $3 billion. He is also the founder of Think Next, Act Now!, a company that trains and mentors tomorrow’s entrepreneur today.

He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology at Purdue University and his Master’s degree in Public Administration at Penn State.

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AUTHORS, BUSINESS, LEADERSHIP, PERSONAL GROWTH

Becki Saltzman: Are you living curiously?

Joined in studio today by Becki Saltzman, Curiosity Consultant with Living Curiously, and the author of LIVING CURIOUSLY: How To Use Curiosity To Be Remarkable And Do Good Stuff!

Discussion guide from my conversation with Becki Saltzman:

Becki Saltzman1. Are most people dissatisfied with their lives and careers because they are NOT curious?

2. “Curiosity is the cure for a lot of things…”

3. The reason most people struggle with sales is because they are not curious.

4. Becki provides the definition of LIVING CURIOUSLY (familiarity + uncertainty).

5. “Don’t be so familiar with something that you are no longer curious…”

6. Can you be too curious? Can you hide behind it?

7. How does living curiously make one remarkable?

8. Becki walks us through the five-step LIVING CURIOUSLY method:
a. Start with what you are not.
b. Dumpster-dive your life.
c. Cross-pollinate.
d. Find uncommon commonalities.
e. BLAST (blunder, learn, accumulate, successes, try again).

9. It’s one thing to be curious, but if you learn nothing as a result of being curious, it is useless.

10. You can affect change in a BIG way, but you can also achieve this through small ripple effects too…

11. Can you learn to be curious? And if so, how do you start?

12. Free-range curiosity verses applied curiosity.

13. You need to arm yourself with three curiosity questions.

14. Why does corporate management seem to be opposed to employing curious people? Or another question: how do you build a “curious” business culture?

15. Determining the “minimum viable question.” For example, “What did your childhood smell like?

16. “In the arena…” Are you even in the game, are you even in the arena if you are NOT curious?

17. The opposite of fear is curiosity, not courage.

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About Becki Saltzman:

Becki is the author of Living Curiously: How to Use Curiosity to Be Remarkable and Do Good Stuff. She is a curiosity consultant, assumption buster, and idea generator.

Becki holds a masters degree in behavioral science from Washington University in St. Louis, and has spent the last two decades studying curiosity and the role it plays in adventure and insights, problem solving and idea generation, sales, and ideal lifestyle design.

She is also a blogger, columnist, professional speaker, and, in addition to Living Curiously, she’s the author of Arousing the Buy Curious. In her past lives she was a real estate broker and fashion buyer. In her future life she’s the host of the soon-to-launch podcast, What Are You Missing? A Podcast of Living Curiously.

Becki is the founder of the Living Curiously Lifestyle and creator of The Living Curiously Method—a framework and teaching program for using curiosity to accomplish remarkable things in adventure, work, and life. She is the spawn of auctioneers and breeder of boys. When she’s not traveling to speak about curiosity and living curiously, Becki lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband. She loves great travel adventures, crowded dance floors, and brown drinks.

Find Becki Saltzman’s book here:

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AUTHORS, BUSINESS, LEADERSHIP

Kate Sweetman: Are you moving faster than the speed of change?

Joined in studio today by Kate Sweetman, Co-Founder + Chief Client Officer of SweetmanCragun, and author of Reinvention: Accelerating Results in the Age of Disruption…

Discussion guide from my conversation with Kate Sweetman:

Kate Sweetman1. In terms of developing leaders and driving change, is it a different process in the US verses other parts of the world? Or are the principles pretty much the same everywhere?

2. Why did the world need another book on leadership, change, and reinvention?

3. If you are not moving faster than the speed of change, you are falling behind.

4. Embrace that constant change is the new normal.

5. The reinvention agility matrix.

6. One role of a leader is to understand where on this matrix their people are, and move forward accordingly.

7. It’s one thing to say “we need to change.” It’s quite another to actually drive and make that change. That’s the true skill of a leader.

8. “The Reinvention Formula.” Disatisfaction, focus, alignment, execution.

9. It’s not about changing WHEN you have to, it’s about changing BEFORE you have to.

10. Kate defines both “the Age of Disruption” and what is meant by “Reinvention.” Note: being in the age of disruption is a good thing!

11. Change will affect your day. You just have to embrace that, and realize that your current today isn’t the best it could be.

12. “We are actually programmed to learn, grow, and change. We just typically get that beaten out of us as children.”

13. You will ultimately conclude that you will only want to work in an organization that embraces change.

14. This has everything to do with talent: recruitment, development, and retention.

15. Understanding the shift from continuous improvement, to renovation, to reinvention.

16. Why does change fail?

17. People have to clearly understand what WILL happen if change fails.

18. “Leadership development IS a change process.”

19. How do you effectively start a change effort?

About Kate Sweetman:

Kate provides a uniquely valuable international perspective on Leadership and Organizations, having an extensive history researching, facilitating, advising, and publishing on multiple aspects of client work around the globe. Her first-hand experience with world leaders, Fortune 100 organizations, and Asian multi-nationals provides a substantial foundation for insights that extend beyond borders. Kate was listed as a Thinkers50 for her body of work throughout her career. She co-authored the best selling business bookThe Leadership Code.

Find Kate’s book right here:

Kate Sweetman

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AUTHORS, BUSINESS, LEADERSHIP, PERSONAL GROWTH

Game Changer 06: Winning the game of business and life

Welcome to Episode 06 of Be A Game Changer: Winning the game of business and life! A series about taking action and playing this game to win, and play it well. A series that provides the light, the path, and your map to a better future!

Discussion guide from Episode 06: Winning the game of business and life:

1. First, Bill reminds us what it means to be a game changer.

2. Why is it so important to look at business and life as a game?

3. Why are we afraid of having fun doing business and living life?

4. Vitality is the key!

5. Business is a subset of life, and for game changers, they are intertwined, and their work fuels and inspires them.

Winning the game of business and life6. When you see business and life as a game, you can make your own rules, and change them as necessary. Someone else’s rules, scripts, and formula might not work for you. Change it!

7. “Game changers resist the status quo because they want to have fun doing it their own way.”

8. What to do when you are afraid to challenge the company rules and policy?

9. This is NOT a zero-sum game. Just because there are winners, there does not have to be losers of the game.

10. Game changers thrive on the pressure that comes with playing a game. This is where legends are indeed made. And when you feel pressure, that’s a sign that something amazing could happen!

11. Game changers want to play, they want the ball. They don’t sit on the sidelines.

12. Most people are observers, not active participants.

13. “You might think you are playing the game, but you are probably not. You might be a piece on the board, but someone else is moving you around.”

14. If the game is easy, you need to play a tougher game.

15. You might also realize that you are playing the wrong game. And when you are the CEO of your own life, you can decide to play a different game.

16. The game should never end. The game should continue to challenge you. The game should be moving always forward.

About the co-host, Bill Wooditch:

Game ChangerBill is a keynote speaker and peak-performance business training coach. He is a mentor and advocate for those who actively seek and are determined to make a difference in their lives and the lives of others.

He began his career with $200 to his name, a suitcase, one corduroy suit and two ties. Retreat wasn’t an option; there was only one way – Always Forward! His purpose, energy and conviction fueled his meteoric sales success. In two years, he “found a way and made a way” to become the top salesperson at Liberty Mutual – a company employing over 19,000 people at the time. Ready for the “next challenge”, he was recruited by and joined the 6th largest broker in the world, Corroon & Black (currently the Willis Group), where, for two consecutive years, he earned the distinction as the top producer in the company.

Today, he is the founder, CEO, and president of The Wooditch Group, a privately held risk management and insurance services firm. The Wooditch Group provides client-centric solutions and comprehensive risk management programs for domestic and international clients whose revenues range from $10 million to over $3 billion. He is also the founder of Think Next, Act Now!, a company that trains and mentors tomorrow’s entrepreneur today.

He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology at Purdue University and his Master’s degree in Public Administration at Penn State.

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You can find Bill’s book here:

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This series is made possible by:

stamped logo“Think Next, Act Now” is an entrepreneurial movement. It is a teaching platform, a coaching forum that emphasizes action, and the link between thought and action makes a difference in the outcome you determine or the result that is determined for you.

When you see, seize, and create opportunity for yourself, you take a BIG step toward becoming recession proof, and changing your life.

If you are determined to make a change in your life — “Think Next, Act Now” will provide the essential toolkit to move your life forward!

Only realized potential cashes the check of reality! Now is the time to realize your potential – Think Next, Act Now and go “Always Forward!”

To learn more, go to BillWooditch.com!

###

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AUTHORS, BUSINESS, LEADERSHIP, PERSONAL GROWTH

Game Changer 05: Owning The Present

Welcome to Episode 05 of Be A Game Changer: Owning The Present! Take action to win the game of business and life! A series that provides the light, the path, and your map to a better future!

Discussion guide from Episode 05: Owning The Present:

1. First, Bill reminds us what does it even means to be a game changer: Game changers influence results, and the game of business and life is different simply because they are there and engaged…

2. What does Bill mean by “owning the present?”

3. The present is ALL WE HAVE…but too many people are anchored in the past. And as a result, they can never actually get to the future…

4. Focused on the future means you are operating from fear. Focused on the past and you are operating with regret. They only time is NOW.

5. “Owning the present is the ONLY way to INFLUENCE the future.” How does that actually work?

owning the present6. You can only build a future through efforts in the PRESENT.

7. You have to know where you want to go, so that you can do the essential work in the present to get there…

8. The past can only give us excuses…

9. Fear distracts us from owning the present.

10. Only when you face your fear can you possibly own the present. You have to embrace your fear…

11. What does confidence have with owning the present?

12. Without a vision, you don’t know how to operate in your present.

13. Importance of awareness…and how do we improve that skill set?

14. You cannot be happy if you aren’t fully engaged in your present.

15. “Are you the kind of person you’d want to hang out with?”

16. “Stop looking in your rearview mirror…”

17. Belief is important, for, you cannot own the present without belief.

18. To be in the present, make it personal and authentic. You aren’t present if you aren’t authentic…

19. If you are a game changer, it is ALL personal.

20. You have the power to make things happen. And the present is the ONLY to wield that power…

21. Continued daily learning still matters to owning the present.

22. The role of meditation plays in owning the present…

About the co-host, Bill Wooditch:

Game ChangerBill is a keynote speaker and peak-performance business training coach. He is a mentor and advocate for those who actively seek and are determined to make a difference in their lives and the lives of others.

He began his career with $200 to his name, a suitcase, one corduroy suit and two ties. Retreat wasn’t an option; there was only one way – Always Forward! His purpose, energy and conviction fueled his meteoric sales success. In two years, he “found a way and made a way” to become the top salesperson at Liberty Mutual – a company employing over 19,000 people at the time. Ready for the “next challenge”, he was recruited by and joined the 6th largest broker in the world, Corroon & Black (currently the Willis Group), where, for two consecutive years, he earned the distinction as the top producer in the company.

Today, he is the founder, CEO, and president of The Wooditch Group, a privately held risk management and insurance services firm. The Wooditch Group provides client-centric solutions and comprehensive risk management programs for domestic and international clients whose revenues range from $10 million to over $3 billion. He is also the founder of Think Next, Act Now!, a company that trains and mentors tomorrow’s entrepreneur today.

He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology at Purdue University and his Master’s degree in Public Administration at Penn State.

###

You can find Bill’s book here:

###

This series is made possible by:

stamped logo“Think Next, Act Now” is an entrepreneurial movement. It is a teaching platform, a coaching forum that emphasizes action, and the link between thought and action makes a difference in the outcome you determine or the result that is determined for you.

When you see, seize, and create opportunity for yourself, you take a BIG step toward becoming recession proof, and changing your life.

If you are determined to make a change in your life — “Think Next, Act Now” will provide the essential toolkit to move your life forward!

Only realized potential cashes the check of reality! Now is the time to realize your potential – Think Next, Act Now and go “Always Forward!”

To learn more, go to BillWooditch.com!

###

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AUTHORS, BUSINESS, LEADERSHIP, PERSONAL GROWTH

Game Changer 04: Become The CEO Of Your Life

Welcome to Episode 04 of Be A Game Changer: Become the CEO of Your Life! Take action to win the game of business and life! A series that provides the light, the path, and your map to a better future!

Discussion guide from Episode 04: Become the CEO of your life:

1. First, Bill reminds us what does it even means to be a game changer: Game changers want responsibility and accountability, and to make a difference, and influencing results.

2. Bill provides an overview of what it means to become the CEO of YOUR life.

3. “If you are not in control of your life, then who is?”

4. You are responsible for your life. But most of us concede this to others. And that’s you are unhappy.

5. What’s your personal mission statement?

6. “Most people simply exist. They aren’t really living.”

7. This is a mindset. And there are no excuses.

Become The CEO Of Your Life8. CEOs find a way, or make a way, to make things happen in life.

9. How are you perpetuating yourself?

10. CEOs serve yourself first. Before you can possibly help others.

11. With regards to the idea of becoming the CEO of your life, you can either accept or reject the idea, BUT YOU CANNOT ESCAPE IT.

12. Deep down, people know they have the power (and the responsibility) to make things happen, but they are afraid of that power.

13. A CEO embraces continuous learning and development, a process that NEVER ends.

14. A game changers find joys in learning something new, and then successfully applying it to his or her life…

15. The service mindset is a critical factor here. The Abundance Mindset. We can ALL win.

16. Saying “I don’t know” should be empowering, and game changers, then say “But show me how!”

17. Beware of the ego…

18. Understanding the four I’s:
Individual.
Intractable.
Intransigent.
Invaluable.

19. Confidence (ego with talent) vs. Arrogance (ego without talent).

20. How do you start to become the CEO of your life?

About the co-host, Bill Wooditch:

Game ChangerBill is a keynote speaker and peak-performance business training coach. He is a mentor and advocate for those who actively seek and are determined to make a difference in their lives and the lives of others.

He began his career with $200 to his name, a suitcase, one corduroy suit and two ties. Retreat wasn’t an option; there was only one way – Always Forward! His purpose, energy and conviction fueled his meteoric sales success. In two years, he “found a way and made a way” to become the top salesperson at Liberty Mutual – a company employing over 19,000 people at the time. Ready for the “next challenge”, he was recruited by and joined the 6th largest broker in the world, Corroon & Black (currently the Willis Group), where, for two consecutive years, he earned the distinction as the top producer in the company.

Today, he is the founder, CEO, and president of The Wooditch Group, a privately held risk management and insurance services firm. The Wooditch Group provides client-centric solutions and comprehensive risk management programs for domestic and international clients whose revenues range from $10 million to over $3 billion. He is also the founder of Think Next, Act Now!, a company that trains and mentors tomorrow’s entrepreneur today.

He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology at Purdue University and his Master’s degree in Public Administration at Penn State.

###

You can find Bill’s book here:

###

This series is made possible by:

stamped logo“Think Next, Act Now” is an entrepreneurial movement. It is a teaching platform, a coaching forum that emphasizes action, and the link between thought and action makes a difference in the outcome you determine or the result that is determined for you.

When you see, seize, and create opportunity for yourself, you take a BIG step toward becoming recession proof, and changing your life.

If you are determined to make a change in your life — “Think Next, Act Now” will provide the essential toolkit to move your life forward!

Only realized potential cashes the check of reality! Now is the time to realize your potential – Think Next, Act Now and go “Always Forward!”

To learn more, go to BillWooditch.com!

###

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BUSINESS, CONTRIBUTORS, LEADERSHIP, LIFESTYLE, PERSONAL GROWTH

Work With Your Nature – Not Against It!

Game-changers break the rules that others fear to bend. The ultimate challenge for the inspired sales person is to become a “game-changer” – a challenge which delivers rewards equal to its requirements. Game-changers make the rules. They use their instinct to govern, their head to drive as they convince, compel and attract from both their person and their product. They create a standard of care for another that often is not in compliance with the limitations of rules.

People are often turned-off by an approach that is “run-of-the-mill”, predictable and void of the creativity that bears the brand of originality. Here’s a novel approach – engage a person as a person, not a concept! Your customer or prospective customer will thank you for exhibiting behavior that is authentic and often disarming because of its honest approach. “You can’t be all things to all people,” some sage purportedly uttered… Learn your value and don’t surrender it on the altar of “I have to please everyone” – you’ll end up pleasing no one and gravely disappointing the most important person in the equation: you! (See “Always Forward!” secret # 5 – “The Rule of 33-1/3 Percent”)

Make it a personal challenge to do that which provides a relief from boredom. Boredom is that unfocused haze of distraction that casts its cloud over the average business person’s day. You may work with or for average; these people show up physically but not mentally. They do just enough to get through the day, expanding four hours of work into eight. They pick up a paycheck, go home to the blank void of fabricated distraction until the alarm goes-off signaling the start of the next day’s “walk through”.

The fun, for me and it may be for you, is found in the game – get in play; risk making those mistakes that generate growth through intelligent risk. Risk creates opportunity. Opportunity is that which we make available. Make opportunity available and seize the initiative. Forward movement, directed and managed with purpose and conviction will make you distinctive. Look around you – most people look like outcasts from a Walking Dead casting call. Now, you are going to get bumped and bruised, you’ll miss the mark at times, you may offend and the meek and mild aren’t going to “like you”. They will fear you – embrace it! People are change averse. Mention the word, and watch their knees get weak. They don’t know what the change is or what it means, but their instinct sends a signal, “Not good – not good – saber-tooth tiger – not good!” We’re hardwired to fear loss and avoid change. We deviate from this internal wiring by degree – each of us are unique, bearing our individual stamp of DNA imprint. My suggestion is to work with your nature, not against it. You either have the “stuff” to change the game, or you may want to partner with those people who do and can.

Speaking of “those who can and do” – remember this: ego with talent is confidence, ego without talent is arrogance. Be humble, be hungry, be confident. Treat people with respect, but follow your inner-rebel, the one that is imbued with ethics, integrity, manifesting the character that defines your nature.

You will grow daily as a person from the self-challenge of risk and the demands of authenticity. When you bring constructive contribution to your company’s system, you can animate that system – you will make it vibrant, it will come alive from the pulse of your personality. Your personality can bring the vibrancy of color and feel to the staid, non-descript conformity of the system. You can follow in lock-step and be the soldier in the rank and file, but we need those who push the boundaries of possibility and create new standards, fresh tracks in the snow, the path of achievement that now can be followed by others.

We need the panache and the originality of the game-changer. Game-changers spearhead innovation. They are on that bleeding edge that cuts and enables. They take the cuts, bleed, learn, adapt and grow.  They grow their personal platform and further our strategic vision. They are the ones that create those opportunities that we cash when we make payroll, pay debt, provide benefits and provide contributions, rewards and bonuses. We all flourish from the risk, the sacrifice and the results of their efforts.

Our companies need people on the support lines. We also need people on the front lines – those are the ones that feed our support teams as our support teams provide stewardship and care that feeds credibility and residual income to the front lines. Look in the mirror. Be realistic – are you willing to pay the price that each position requires? Within each position in the company, be it sales or service, YOU have the opportunity, every day to change the game for yourself, your family, your team and your company. You can be a game-changer in sales just as you can be a game-changer in service. Find a way to yes, find a way to anticipate and address a client’s wishes and needs.

It takes courage to change the game. There is risk, there is reward, there is disappointment, loss, success and gain. I think Churchill sums it up best, “Success is going from failure to Failure Without Losing Your Enthusiasm.”

Locate your inner Churchill – find the energy, the enthusiasm, marry it with self-belief and the product of the union will change the game!

Create or follow a path, make a choice, but whatever the choice may be, go “Always Forward!”

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Game ChangerBill Wooditch is a keynote speaker and peak-performance business training coach. He is a mentor and advocate for those who actively seek and are determined to make a difference in their lives and the lives of others.

He began his career with $200 to his name, a suitcase, one corduroy suit and two ties. Retreat wasn’t an option; there was only one way – Always Forward! His purpose, energy and conviction fueled his meteoric sales success. In two years, he “found a way and made a way” to become the top salesperson at Liberty Mutual – a company employing over 19,000 people at the time. Ready for the “next challenge”, he was recruited by and joined the 6th largest broker in the world, Corroon & Black (currently the Willis Group), where, for two consecutive years, he earned the distinction as the top producer in the company.

Today, he is the founder, CEO, and president of The Wooditch Group, a privately held risk management and insurance services firm. The Wooditch Group provides client-centric solutions and comprehensive risk management programs for domestic and international clients whose revenues range from $10 million to over $3 billion. He is also the founder of Think Next, Act Now!, a company that trains and mentors tomorrow’s entrepreneur today.

He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology at Purdue University and his Master’s degree in Public Administration at Penn State.

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