Monday, January 29, 2007

Think BIG, Start Small

"Anything worth doing is worth doing well."

That's how the phrase goes, right?

My take on it is a little different, here goes:

"Anything worth doing is worth doing poorly."


Rarely is someone great at something the first time they try it. But, the ones who become great are willing to start where they are and invest the sweat equity necessary to do it well.

So if you're going to dream big dreams, be willing to put your ego aside and start small.

If you want to be a great public speaker, go speak to a small social group for free.

If you want to write articles for magazines or have a book in Barnes & Noble, start writing and submit articles to e-zines or print off a few copies of your book at and pass them out to anyone who will read them.

If you want to start training athletes - train some for free until you've proven that you can get results.

Do the things that are within your power to do - and do them NOW.

Don't sit around and wait for your big break - it's not going to find you.

You have to find it.

Side note: The reason I wrote about this was that someone I was talking to today suggested to me that they were just waiting for their "big break" like the one that I got. We were talking about goals - what their's were and what mine was. Strangely enough, our goals were similar and we set them at similar times. But I got the "big break" of moving to a town of 23,000 that I had never been to before in arguably the most fitness-unfriendly state in the country to start a business with only about $1500. Add to this that I never had owned a business and most of my professional expertise was in training athletes or coaching baseball. Needless to say that this wasn't exactly what I had in mind when I was envisioning my 'big break' on the path to my goal of being a millionaire doing what I enjoyed. (Yep - that was my goal when I decided to leave coaching). Not there just yet - but my 'big break in disguise' led to countless other opportunities and a thriving business that has laid the foundation for me to achieve my initial goal. (There are different goals now - but I won't bore you with those.)

Friday, January 26, 2007

Thoughts About Cutting Costs and Increasing Margins

This morning my partner Nick sent me over an e-mail letting me know we were going to be able to save $638 dollars on our yearly insurance premium for the coverage. I don't talk much about the cutting costs side of business because typically Nick handles that side of the business.

Pat = Incomings
Nick = Outgoings

But this is one of the real neglected areas in our industry. We all like to talk about making $75 or $100 dollars an hour - but what do we actually net? That's a crucial question because net is a helluva lot more important than gross. So here are a few points to think about when your trying to cut costs and increase margings:

1. Get your bills checked. Take nothing for granted. We just received a refund from a company that had been overcharging us $25 per month.

2. Test everything. If you are sending a mail piece, test it in small #'s first.

3. Before every business purchase say to yourself: 'Do I really need this?' 'Do I need it now?'

4. Negotiate everything. I ordered a direct mail piece recently and the starting price was $0.41 per piece - we ended out paying $0.32.

5. Lower dollars tied up in inventory if you carry retail.

6. Know what you're willing to spend before any transaction. Walk away if you can't get your terms.

7. Think of every cost as a percentage of sales. Know what it costs to run your business each week / month. Know how many sales it will take to cover expenses.

8. If you have employees - commission compensation is best.

9. Get a better accountant.

10. Stop doing low return activities. Here are 2 steps:

Step 1 - Track EVERY hour you spend working on your business for a week. Not just time spent with clients. Time spent marketing, paying bills, writing programs, etc. Now divide your week's income by that number of hours. This is your true hourly rate.

Humbling huh?

Step 2 - Put a sign on your wall with your desired hourly rate. Every time you start a task, are talking on the phone or surfing the net - look at the sign. Is what you're doing paying you that rate? If not, outsource it or eliminate it.

11. Raise your prices - the easiest way to increase margins.

12. Set monthly expenditure budgets. Now try to get more each month for that amount.

Just something for you to consider. We go into more detail on that and every other part of running a successful fitness business on the new product. You can check it out at:


Wednesday, January 24, 2007

More Randoms Thoughts...

Since I've been going between working on putting the finishing touches on the training curriculum for Prograde Nutrition, developing a new marketing campaign for our health club, brainsotrming a new coaching program with Dax Moy and working with several business coaching clients this week - I'm really working through all aspects of enhancing a business' profitability. Yesterday I shared some stray thoughts about getiing prospects and turning them into clients.

Today I'm going to continue down the same path and share some ideas for making more from each client.

35. Give better service
36. Underpromise and Overdeliver
37. Stay in regular contact outside of normal sessions
38. Add complimentary services - nutrition, massage, etc.
39. Add complimentary product - supplements, foam rollers, etc
40. Use loger term contracts - we use 3, 6 and 12 month...but over 80% are 12 month
41. Keep alot of client data - b-day, anniversary, kids names, hobbies, etc.
42. Schedule the next appt. today
43. Send a weekly e-mail newsletter
44. Send a monthly or quarterly snail mail newsletter
45. Thank you cards - we'll soon be up to sending over 800 cards monthly...AUTOMATED
46. Postpurchase reasurrance - see #45 and also make phone calls
47. Direct mail for special offers or new services
48. Run a "Body for Life-like' contest and offer a special upgraded package for the duration
49. Sell consumables - supplements need to be re-purchased again - DVD's and foam rollers don't
50. Raise your prices
51. Have a scripted up-sell at the initial point of sale
52. Have scripted up-sells at specific point during the clients program
53. Use automated billing
54. Suggest the most expensive program first

There are some more starting points for you to brainstorm and develop ways to improve your business. Back to work:)

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

34 Random Thoughts About Marketing and Sales

I've been moving between 3 seperate projects today and my mind is bouncing from one thought to the next, so I thought I'd share.

Generating Leads

Newspaper Ads

1. Get on the right hand page
2. Don't use your business name in the headline
3. A good headline makes (or breaks) your ad
4. Negotiate on ad price - they WILL negotiate
5. Have a call to action

Direct Mail

6. A good headline makes (or breaks) your mailing - sound familiar
7. The first paragraph has to be great to get the prospect to continue reading
8. The P.S. is the next most important component of a successful letter
9. Test, test, test
10. A mailing to your house list is best, and endorsed mailing second best and a targeted list form InfoUSA or a similar list broker third.
11. Have a call to action - sound familiar again

Strategic Allainces

12. Don't be afraid to ask
13. Create a win/win situation
14. Only work with people that have the right customer base, run a business that you feel comfortable associating yourself with and aren't assholes.


15. Earn the referral
16. Ask for the referral
17. Reward the referring action
18. Reward the referral again when the referred prospect buys
19. Remember how much it would cost to acquire a new client through advertising when rewarding a referrer

Conversion Rates - Turning Prospects Into Clients

20. Offer a guarantee
21. Have a USP
22. Have more than one type of offering - Semi-private, bootcamps and group weight management all can help you convert more prospects
23. Make it easy to buy - use EFT billing so payments can be spread out
24. Have plenty of testimonials handy - social proof is crucial
25. Try before you buy - as opposed to what some people think, free sessions are a great idea. If your average package is $1000, wouldn't you expect someone to want to know what they're spending a thousand bucks on?
26. Use a sales script
27. Test different sales presentations - we changed 1 step and increased our average transaction buy $400.
28. Spend more time listening than talking
29. As Jim Labadie says...find their pain
30. Educate on value, not price
31. Don't be afraid to ask for the sale
32. Don't be afraid to ask for a BIG sale
33. Target better prospects
34. Track everything - close rates, avg. deal size, etc.

I'll post some other ideas tomorrow.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Random Stuff...

Lots of things going on right now - some of which I'm a part of and some of which I'm just excited to see launch. Here's a rundown:

The Ultimate Fitness Professional's Business Success System - Alwyn Cosgrove and I teamed up to develop the most comprehensive guide to developing a success business as a fitness professional that the industry has ever seen. In the past, plenty of folks have done marketing products, sales products and products on virtually any other specific aspect of the business of fitness - but no one ever put together a complete systematic approach to developing and running a successful and lucrative business as a fitness pro. During the Ryan Lee Bootcamp Alwyn and I discussed this at length and worked through what the 'ultimate resource' might contain. Then we had my partner Nick Berry interview us about everything we came up with.

I buy EVERYTHING about the business of training - and I'm biased, but I'm pretty sure this is the best resource you can get when it comes to developing a successful training business. Check out more about it at:

Workout Pass - Leave it to Ryan Lee to come up with a fitness resource that will have a global impact. As I understand it, Ryan has developed a network of 43 different workout sites (that will eventually grow to a network of hundreds) where you can access workouts designed by some of the industry's best fitness pros. So far I know that Craig Ballantyne, Alwyn Cosgrove and Mike Boyle all will have sites where you can access their training programs.

The potential ramifications are huge for trainers and consumers both. Trainer will be able to see the actual workouts that some of the industry's best design - what an educational tool (I actually had some guy e-mail me and imply he wouldn't benefit from a resource like this...he didn't need to see someone else's workouts. Hope he moves to my town so I can put him out of business :)). Consumers will have a one-stop-shop for cutting edge training programs and access to the world's best trainers no matter where they are or what their budget is. If you want to see what I'm talking about, Ryan has put together a demo at:

Prograde Nutrition - Ryan Lee and Jim Labadie are launching a supplement company specifically with fitness professionals in mind. I, along with Nick Berry will be working with them and weight management expert Jayson Hunter on this massive project. You've probably heard me preach about autoship supplements as the perfect 'back-end' product for personal training and weight management / nutritional coaching as the best complimentary service to training services. Prograde Nutrition is built around those two premises and promises to be something ALL fitness professionals should consider integrating into their business. Nick and I will be handling the development and implementation of the fitness professional education & training. Jayson Hunter has put together a great special report on Weight Management you can pick up at: that will help drive the points home that I've made about the value of Weight Management Programs.

Turbulence Training Membership Site - I attribute a lot of the success that our training business (we have about 500 clients in 2 locations) has delivering consistent results to clients to the information put out there by Craig Ballantyne and Alwyn Cosgrove. Most of our clients are 'fat loss clients' whose primary objective is to improve body composition and I consider these 2 guys to be the preeminent experts on training for fat loss. You might have read that Alwyn's Program Design Bible is not only what we based or company's training manual on, but also required reading for our staff. Well, Craig's Turbulence Training programs have a huge impact on what we do as well. His programs are extraordinarily well written, efficient and deliver great results consistently. When Craig puts out his monthly TT program - it's required reading for our entire staff as well. So when I saw that Craig was putting together a comprehensive membership site - I just started counting the days. Rest assured - my entire staff will be there bugging him on the forum with questions. I don't know any more about it than what I read on his blog, butu you can check out the site pre-launch at:

I just find it tremendously exciting watching (and sometimes being part of) fellow fitness professionals take action and make things happen. Hopefully you use this as fuel to help drive you to achieveing your goals.

There is plenty more going on, but I have to go for now. I'll be back tomorrow with some marketing stuff you can use. Later.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

A Great Point

Yesterday my friend Eric Ruth sent out an e-mail that really illustrated (he’s an extraordinary writer) the point that Nick and I have been preaching on for soooooooooo long:

Success lies in your systems.

Read just a bit of what he wrote:

Want to know what that BIG secret is?

It's not copywriting.
It's not direct mail.
It's not lead generation.
It's not the internet.
It's not email.
It's not public speaking.
It's not strategic alliances.
It's not advertising.
It's not publicity.
It's not selling.
It's not information products.
It's not developing your back-end.
It's not referrals.
It's not continuity programs.
It's not tracking and measuring.

It's not even building a big LIST.

None of those, individually or collectively, is the BIG secret.

I'll tell you what it is on one condition...

You need to listen to it now...and HEAR it now...

This will be the most eye-opening thing you'll hear all year, so pay careful attention. Write this down and meditate on it a while if necessary.
Seriously, let this sink in...HEAR IT...

It's not about tactical marketing, it IS about "the systemization & management of marketing."

Listen to me carefully: tactical marketing is easy. Anyone can do it.

The problem is learning how to implement all of the components of marketing into one day-by-day WORKABLE PLAN.

I don’t know if I could say it so eloquently – but I am in TOTAL AGREEMENT!

But I think you have to take it even a step further.

You have to implement a day-to-day workable plan for EVERY aspect of your business…not just marketing.

You need a system for lead generation.
You need a system for converting prospects into clients.
You need a system for maximizing the lifetime value of those clients.
You need a system for program design.
You need a system for the consistent delivery of great results for your clients.
You need a system to manage you ‘business numbers.’
You need systems for EVERYTHING that you do in your business.

Tomorrow at noon (EST) Alwyn Cosgrove and I will unveil the first resource EVER MADE AVAILABLE that teaches you to develop and implement all the necessary systems in your fitness business. For 48 hours you will be able to get this life-changing program for $197 – then the price goes up…a lot.

For those of you who are really ready to turn the corner and quit struggling, we are even going to do a live teleseminar to answer ALL your questions about how to develop and run a lucrative business as a fitness professional. We have reserved 100 lines for the first 100 fitness pros who TAKE ACTION. I strongly suspect that the lines will all be gone not long after noon, because the motivated folks who signed up for our early bird notification list will get a one hour head start.

If you want to be one of the lucky 100, today’s the last day to register for the early bird list at:

Our industry has never seen a resource like this before…don’t miss out!

Monday, January 15, 2007

Behavioral Congruency

Last Sunday I was writing a special report for the upcoming launch of The Ultimate Fitness Professional’s Business Success System while periodically checking my e-mail. Somewhere toward the middle of the day Dax Moy sent over some sales copy he wanted me to review. Somewhere during our correspondence, I asked Dax what he thought most fitness pros we’re doing while we were working on a Sunday afternoon. I think he said watching TV.

That would be my guess too.

The same thought popped into my head yesterday (Sunday) while I was working on some new program design software we’re creating for our training company. “I wonder what everyone else is doing?”

Please understand – I think you should have some down time. Holly and I went to the movies yesterday and I watched part of both football games. But I have deadlines to complete projects and goals that I want to achieve. They aren’t going to happen on their own.

I have to make them happen.

Everyone thinks about being rich or achieving whatever they have defined as their “ultimate goal.” But thinking doesn’t get it done.

‘Doing’ is what separates the successful from the unsuccessful.

So here are two things I picked up from Dan Kennedy:

Make your behavior congruent with the behavior of people who are already achieving the goals that you want to achieve. Identify who they are, see how they spend their time and model them. If you want to achieve the success that Alwyn Cosgrove has achieved, don’t think that you can skip straight to writing books and articles without putting in the ‘in the trenches’ work training thousands of hours. You need to spend your time like he has in order to get where he is.

Make your behavior congruent with your goals. Don’t bullshit yourself and say “I’ll do it tomorrow.” If you want success, do ‘it’ today. Simply journal how you are spending your time and your money. Are they congruent with what you say your goals are?

If you want to make more money as a fitness professional are you:

Studying business every day?
Buying and listening to, watching or reading products?
Getting coaching and taking action on it?
Modeling those who have achieved what you want?

If you want to write a book or e-book are you:

Writing every morning?
Studying what Craig Ballantyne and Tom Venuto do?
Deciding where your starving market is?

Those are just a couple of examples but I hope you get the picture. If you only do things that move you closer to your goals when you feel like writing, have spare time or ‘it’s convenient’ – you’ll never get there. Get up earlier. Block off an hour during the day, spend a couple of hours in the early morning on weekends. Before long you’ll be reaping the rewards of your efforts.

P.S. – One other exercise I started doing years ago that helped keep me on track was at the end of each day I marked off the day on a calendar and said “another day I’ll never get back – how did I spend it?” Maybe it’s corny, but it kept me from procrastinating.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Kekich's Credo Part IV

The last installment:

76. "I will do this" is the only attitude that works. "I'll try" or "I think" doesn't work.

77. Always work on increasing the size of the pie, rather than just your portion.

78. Rewards are rare without risks, but take only carefully calculated risks. Make sure the odds are on your side.

79. The "how" you get it (with integrity) is more important than the "what".

80. Be explicit and semantically precise in all communications, agreements and dealings. Summarize and write down important discussions... and make sure all sides agree. Putting agreements in writing avoids misunderstandings. Memories are fallible, and death is inevitable (so far).

81. The best way to get started is to get started. Life rewards action... not reaction. Wait for nothing. Attack life. Don't plan to death or ask for permission... but act now... and apologize later.

82. Question everything. Don't believe it's true or right just because it's conventional. Strip all limits from your imagination on every deal and look for an unconventional creative opportunity in every mistake, crisis or problem. Be flexible, and be willing to turn on a dime when advantageous.

83. Have fun. The single key to a successful happy life is finding a vocation you enjoy - one that excites you the most.

84. Nobody gets old by surprise.

85. When it's a matter of producing or starving, people don't starve.

86. You get what you expect, not what you want. Fill your life with positive expectations. Demand the best. Attitude and desire contribute to 90% of your achievement. Anyone can learn the physical mechanics.

87. The surest way to accomplish your business goals is making service to others your primary goal. The key to success is adding value to others' lives.

88. The source of lasting happiness can never come from outside yourself through consuming values - but only from within yourself by creating values. Producing more than you consume is the only justification for existence.

89. Unattended problems will not go away, but will usually get worse. Anticipate and avoid problems - or meet them head on at the outset. Overcome fear by attacking it.

90. Find an excuse to laugh every chance you get, especially when you least feel like it.

91. When someone makes a big issue about his honesty or achievements, he is probably dishonest or a failure.

92. Put the magic power of compound interest to work with every available dollar.

93. The best investment you will ever make is your steady increase of knowledge. Invest in yourself. Thirty minutes of study per day eventually makes you an expert in any subject - but only if you apply that knowledge. Study alone is no substitute for experience. Education is always painfully slow.

94. For each important action you take, ask yourself if you would be embarrassed if it were published. It takes a lifetime of effort to build a good reputation but only a moment of stupidity to destroy it.

95. You are exactly what you believe and think about all day long. Constantly monitor your thoughts.

96. Skepticism is a key to rational thinking. Be especially skeptical of your own cherished beliefs. You might be wrong... and things change.

97. Anxiety is usually caused by lack of control, organization, preparation and action.

98. The first rule of sharpening your mind is to be an alert and sensitive observer. Assume nothing. If it can't be observed, it's not true. Never act on blind faith. Whenever something sounds too good to be true, it almost always is. Refuse to be swayed by emotion when it conflicts with reason. Observation is the genesis of all knowledge and progress... and is the first and last step of every thinking man's tool - The Scientific Method. All science and most progress is built on the Scientific Method (most non-scientists use it by accident). The steps are 1) OBSERVATION. Gathering and rationally organizing facts. This is where most people fail. 2) INDUCTIVE REASONING. Forming a hypothesis - or a generalization of facts held to be true. 3) EXTRAPOLATION. Making a projection or prediction based on the hypothesis in areas you didn't yet observe. 4) OBSERVATION. A test for the hypothesis to see if it works.

99. Experience is not what happens to you. It's what you do with what happens to you. It takes a wise man to learn from his own mistakes... and a genius to learn and profit from the mistakes and experiences of others.

100. The purpose of life is to delay, avoid and eventually reverse death.

Talk to you.

Kekich's CredoPart III

Here are success secrets # 51-75:

51. Long term success is built on credibility and on establishing enduring loving relationships with quality people based on mutually earned trust. Cut all ties with dishonest, negative or lazy people, and associate with people who share your values. You become whom you associate with.

52. Don't be preoccupied with things over which you have no control, and don't take things personally.

53. Spend more time working "on" your business than "in" your business.

54. Don't enter into a business relationship with anyone unknown to you without being furnished with references dating back at least 10 years. If he doesn't have good enduring relationships, stay away. Check all representations on which you will rely made by everyone.

55. Enjoy life. Treat it as an adventure. Care passionately about the outcome, but keep it in perspective. Things are seldom as bleak as they seem when they are going wrong - or as good as they seem when they are going well. Lighten up. You'll live longer.

56. Identify exactly what it is you want. This takes a lot of thought. Then don't let anything stand in your way of getting it.

57. You can get any job done through the sheer force of will when combined with uncompromising integrity and competence. Strong leadership is the key.

58. You are responsible for exactly who, what and where you are in life. That will be just as true this time next year. Situations aren't important. How you react to them is. You have to play it where it lies.

59. The foundation of achievement is intense desire. The world's highest achievers have the highest levels of dissatisfaction. Those with the lowest levels are the failures. The best way to build desire is to make resolute choices for the future.

60. Integrate every aspect of your life (body, mind, spirit, relationships, business) and each within itself. Integrating means understanding and digesting a process... and seeing relationships among seemingly unrelated phenomena. It's a sign of innovative genius.

61. Never be deceptive when trying to achieve a personal gain. Shortchanging others results in loss of self-esteem.

62. If your purpose of life is security, you will be a failure. Security is the lowest form of happiness.

63. Never enter into a contract unless all parties benefit. But no partnership is ever 50/50. There will always be inequities.

64. Review the basics of your profession at least once per year.

65. Bitterness, jealousy and anger empower your enemies and enslave you. Negative thinking results in the destruction of property. It is anti-property, therefore anti-capitalistic and anti-life. It also erodes your health. Forgive, learn your lessons, and get on with your life.

66. Most people spend 90% of their time on what they're not best at and what they don't like doing - and only 10% of their time on their best and most enjoyable ability. Geniuses delegate the 90%... and spend all their time on their "unique ability".

67. High self-esteem can only come from moral productivity and achievement.

68. There are an infinite number of new opportunities. Actively seek them out, and position yourself to recognize and take advantage of them.

69. There is no such thing as a good idea unless it is developed and utilized.

70. For maximum profits, identify and market universal needs, wants and trends. Creating desire, satisfying needs and wants and replacing problems with creative innovations are the essence of profit generation.

71. To maximize opportunities, seek and master the complicated. The major solutions you find will be surprisingly simple, and the competition is minimal.

72. Always have options. Options are a primary source of power. Power also comes from stripping away appearances and seeing things as they really are.

73. Nothing wins more often than superior preparation. Genius is usually preparation.

74. Patience is profitable. Achievement comes from the sum of consistent small efforts, repeated daily.

75. Persistence is a sure path to success with quality activities. Never, ever, ever give up.

I'll be back with the final 25 tomorrow.

P.S. - Our buddy Allen Hill is offering web hosting to a select number of fitness professionals. Needless to say, we immediately switched all of our sites to using Allen's service...partially because he's giving everyone the first 3 months free :) I'm a sucker for a good deal.

If you're interested in cost-effective, high quality web hosting (and 3 months free) - check out his service at:


Kekich's Credo Part II

Here are your next 25 success secrets:

26. Religiously nourish your body with proper nutrition, exercise, recreation, sleep and relaxation techniques.

27. The choice to exert integrated effort or to default to camouflaged laziness is the key choice that determines your character, competence and future. That critical choice must be made continually - throughout life. The most meaningful thing to live for is reaching your full potential.

28. Keep an active mind, and continue to grow intellectually. You either grow or regress. Nothing stands still.

29. Most accomplishment (and problem avoidance) is built on clear persuasive communication. That includes knowing each other's definitions, careful listening, thinking before talking, focused questioning and observing your feedback. Become a communications expert.

30. Power comes from stripping away appearances and seeing things as they really are. Socialismappeals to psychological and intellectual weaklings. Identify and replace all external authorities with internal strength and competence. Take full control of, and responsibility for, your conscious mind and every aspect of your life. Being incompetent or dependent in any part of your life or business opens you up to sloppiness, manipulation and irrationality.

31. If there is not a conscious struggle to be honest in difficult situations, you are probably being dishonest. Characters aren't really tested until things aren't going well or until the stakes are high.

32. Do not compromise if you are right. Hold your ground, show no fear, ask for what you want, and the opposition will usually agree.

33. If the situation is not right in the long term, walk away from it. Maintain a long term outlook in all endeavors. Live like you don't have much time left... but plan as if you'll live for centuries.

34. Invest only after strict and complete due diligence. Don't allow yourself to be rushed. Make important decisions carefully, consider your gut feelings... then pull the trigger.

35. Stress kills. No matter how painful in the short-term, remove all chronically stressful situations, environments and people from your life.

36. Keep your overhead to a minimum. Rely more on brains, wit and talent... and less on money.

37. Business is the highest evolution of consciousness and morality. The essences of business are: honesty, effort, responsibility, integration, creativity, objectivity, long-range planning, intensity, effectiveness, discipline, thought and control. Business is life on all levels at all times.

38. That which is most satisfying is that which is earned. Anything received free of charge is seldom valued. You can't get something for (from) nothing. The price is too high.

39. By adhering to a strong honest philosophy, you will remain guiltless, blameless, independent and maintain control over your life. Without a sound philosophy, your life will eventually crumble.

40. No dream is too big. It takes almost the same amount of time and energy to manage tiny projects or businesses as it does to manage massive ones... and the massive ones carry with them - proportional rewards.

41. There is no such thing as "just a little theft" or "just a little dishonesty".

42. Lead by example.

43. Take full responsibility for your actions or lack of action. He who errs must pay. This is
an easy concept to grasp from the recipient's end.

44. An hour of effective, precise, hard, disciplined - and integrated thinking can be worth a month of hard work. Thinking is the very essence of, and the most difficult thing to do in business and in life. Empire builders spend hour-after-hour on mental work... while others party. If you're not consciously aware of putting forth the effort to exert self-guided integrated thinking... if you don't act beyond your feelings and instead take the path of least resistance, then you give in to laziness, make bad decisions and no longer control your life.

45. Out-think, out-innovate and out-hustle the competition, and vividly visualize yourself as winning before entering into every deal or competitive situation. Maintain a blood-smelling, fighter pilot life-or-death attitude when any deal gets near to a close.

46. First impressions are lasting impressions. Put your best foot forward. People treat you like you teach them to treat you. A success key is positioning yourself at the top of their agenda.

47. The right thing is usually not the easy thing to do. You may sacrifice popularity for rightness, but you'll lose self-esteem for wrongness. Don't be afraid to say "no".

48. If someone lies to you once, he'll lie to you a thousand times. Lying is for thieves and cowards.

49. Have strict and total respect for other people's property.

50. Producing results is more important than proving you're right. To get things done, try to understand others' frames of references, points of view, needs and wants. Then determine what is honest, fair, effective and rational... and act accordingly.

Back tomorrow with more.

P.S. - Go Buckeyes!!!!!!!

Kekich's Credo

One of my favorite copywriters is a gentleman named Joe Polish. If you paid attention to the supplement industry in the early 90's you probably got some of Bill Phillips direct mail pieces, first for Met-RX and later for EAS. Well, Joe was the writer behind those pieces that pulled tens of millions. (You didn't think Bill wrote those all by himself, did you?)

A while back Joe shared a list of 100 success secrets that a friend of his by the name of David Kekich created. I keep a copy of this list and re-read it from time to time - so I thought I'd share it with you. Due to it's length, I'm going to break it up into four posts of 25 'success secrets' - with one post per day. So here is your first installment. Enjoy!


1. People will do almost anything to stay in their comfort zones. If you want to accomplish anything, get out of your comfort zone. Strive to increase order and discipline in your life. Discipline usually means doing the opposite of what you feel like doing. The easy roads to discipline are 1) setting deadlines, 2) discovering and doing what you do best and what's important and enjoyable to you and 3) focusing on habits by replacing your bad habits and thought patterns, one-by-one, over time, with good habits and thought patterns.

2. Cherish time, your most valuable resource. You can never make up the time you lose. It's the most important value for any productive happy individual and is the only limitation to all accomplishment. To waste time is to waste your life. The most important choices you'll ever make are how you use your time.

3. Think carefully before making any offers, commitments or promises, no matter how seemingly trivial. These are all contracts and must be honored. These also include self-resolutions.

4. Real regrets only come from not doing your best. All else is out of your control. You're measured by results only. Trade excuses and "trying" for results, and expect half-hearted results from half-hearted efforts. Do more than is expected of you. Life's easy when you live it the hard way... and hard if you try to live it the easy way.

5. Always show gratitude when earned, monetarily when possible.

6. Produce for wealth creation and accumulation. Invest profits for wealth preservation and growth. Produce more than you consume and save a minimum of 20% of all earnings. Pay yourself first.

7. You're successful when you like who and what you are. Success includes achievement… while choosing and directing your own activities. It means enjoying intimate relationships and loving what you do in life.

8. Learn from the giants.

9. A little caution avoids great regrets. Hope for the best and prepare for the worst. Keep fully insured physically and materially and keep hedged emotionally. Insurance is not for sale when you need it.

10. Learn the other side's needs, offer as little information as possible, never underestimate your opposition, and never show weakness when negotiating.

11. Never enter into nor invest in a business without a solid, well-researched and well thought-out written plan. Execute the plan with passion and precision. Plan and manage your life the same way.

12. Success comes quickly to those whom develop great powers of intense sustained concentration. The first rule is to get involved by asking focused questions.

13. Protect your downside. The upside will take care of itself. Cut your losses short - and let your profits run. This takes tremendous discipline.

14. The primary purpose of business is to create and keep customers. Marketing and innovation produce results. All other business functions are costs. Prospecting and increasing the average value and frequency of sales are the bedrock of marketing and business.

15. If it's not proprietary, it won't work. Pay only on performance. Proprietary interest is one of the most powerful forces ever known. Whatever you reinforce or reward, you get more of.

16. Competence starts with guaranteeing your work.

17. Life operates in reverse action to entropy. Therefore the universe is hostile to life. Progress is a continued effort to swim against the stream.

18. Find out what works, and then do more of it. Focus first on doing the right things, and then on doing things right by mastering details. A few basic moves produce most results and income.

19. Use leverage with ideas (the ability to generalize is the key to intellectual leverage), work, money, time and people. To maximize profits, replicate yourself. Earning potentials become geometric rather than linear.

20. Rationalizations are generally convenient evasions of reality and are used as excuses for dishonest behavior, mistakes and/or laziness.

21. Always have lofty explicit goals and visualize them intensely. Assume the attitude that if you don't reach your goals, you will literally die! This type of gun-to-your-head forced focus... survival pressure mindset, no matter how briefly used, stimulates your mind, forces you to use your time effectively... and illuminates new ways of getting things done.

22. The value of any service you have to offer diminishes rapidly once it's provided. Protect your compensation before performing.

23. Incalculable effort and hardship over countless generations evolved into the life, values and happiness we take for granted today. Every day should be a celebration of existence. You are a masterpiece of life and should feel and appreciate this all the way down to your bones. Aspire to create, achieve and build onto the great value momentum taking place all around you.

24. Enthusiasm covers many deficiencies - and will make others want to associate with you.

25. Working for someone else gives you little chance to make a fortune. By owning your own business, you only have to be good to become wealthy.

More tomorrow!