Be a Rainmaker.

" In sales you either make it rain or you don't." ~ Guy Kawasaki.

I've been fortunate to know and work with a few rainmakers over the years and I love em. What is a Rainmaker? "A person with the exceptional ability to consistently attract clients, customers, connections and profits." A long time ago a wise old man and mentor told me "In business there are essentially two types of people:

"Those that create demand and those that process demand."

A salesperson who can't create demand falls on the processing side of the equation. No matter how good they are at closing deals they will never be considered real rainmakers. You may be a closer, young whippersnapper, but I will never think of you as a rainmaker until you can create demand - that's when you become invaluable.

That's When You're Different.

Until then you are at the mercy of leads, marketing and a myriad of other variables. Until then I see you on the cost side of the equation. My mentor got a very serious look on his face. The kind of look I saw when he held a belief strongly and it scared the bejeezus out of me.

Don't be weak Dan, he said. Don't be like the salesperson who says that it's marketing's job to get us the leads. Those salespeople are a dime a dozen. They will never be considered rainmakers. They think they can close but really they're just order takers. Become known as a rainmaker and you seize control of your own destiny. A rainmaker writes his own ticket and paycheck. But more than anything else he has universal value in business because he "Creates Demand."

Remember young man, he said, anyone can take orders and process demand but very few can create consistent, profitable, connections and differentiated demand. If you want to be really valuable to any business here is what you need to do "Create demand out of nothing - and make it rain" . The old rainmaker turned away from me and bellowed at the top of his voice ~ "Now get out of here and go create demand".

Be a Rainmaker!

The Two Wolves.

"Life is the sum of all your choices." ~ Albert Camus.

An old Cherokee man told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people. He said, "My son, the battle is between two wolves that live inside us all. One wolf is Evil - it is anger, blame, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego. The other wolf is Good - it is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, serenity, humility, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith". The grandson thought about it for a minute and then he asked his grandfather ~ "Which wolf wins the battle?"

The old Cherokee replied ~ "The One You Feed."

Why Call People?

"If e-mail had been around before the telephone was invented people would have said " hey, forget e-mail - with this new telephone invention I can actually talk to people"

With the advent and popularity of social media, Facebook, Twitter and Linked In, and the ease of email communications is the phone call connection a thing of the past?

Most of us now have hundreds, if not thousands, of acquaintances, followers, friends and connections. Without even addressing those we would like to connect and build relationships with for business or personally. Why not just do everything digitally? Besides don't people see a phone call as an interruption and prefer the ease of electronic texts and images? Perhaps they do - But there are a few people out there that add to their daily digital deliveries with a call. A call to say thank you. A call to say I value you personally. A call to just say I would like to learn more about you and what you value.

The way I see it there are many ways to build upon contacts and connections and we should use them all in order to appreciate the colors, complexities, concerns and character within each of us.

A simple phone call communicates effort (think about voice mail and how hard it can be to actually reach someone). A simple phone call uncovers concerns (are you an interruption or an inspiration?). A simple phone call which sincerely wants to convey appreciation, concern, or interest, takes considerable care. It recognizes that the personal connection may reveal conflict. That takes courage.

If your phone call is seen as an interruption, perhaps it's because you (or your content) are irrelevant and unimportant to the person you are calling. That should tell us more about our ability and willingness to provide value than anything about the recipient of the call.

Take time to find out a little bit about what is important to people during, or preferably before, your call. Take time to add something really personal to the thousands of digital messages we send out every day. Take time to really listen to people. Take time to really connect. Take time to make a call.

Who Do You Thank?

"Only a stomach that rarely feels hungry scorns common things."
~ Horace.

Who do You Thank at Thanksgiving? Some focus on Faith. Some focus on Family and some on Friendships. America pauses at thanksgiving to say thank you and each of us has our own focus.

I focus on those who are better than me, and there are many. Those who altruistically and selflessly give their lives to something larger than themselves. The soldiers who fight for our freedoms. The caring souls who work in hospices and far flung third world countries helping children and those who suffer. Those that tirelessly dedicate themselves to helping others and live without the comforts that we coddled children become accustomed to. The saints among us.

Those with the strength to do the jobs that must be done without the need to be recognized or rewarded. Those humble and heroic souls free of the shackles of an entitlement mentality. The soldiers and saints that with courage and character define the very best of us. They work in shadows. Their faces are rarely shown. Their daily struggles to make a difference go unheralded. We don't thank them enough.

These are my heroes and I think of them and reflect upon how much I owe them every day. For doing what I can't or won't do - for being what I can't or won't be. Every single day you humble me and I need to say

Thank You.

True Friends.

"Friendship... is not something you learn in school. But if you haven't learned the meaning of friendship, you really haven't learned anything.
" ~ Muhammad Ali.

America and the world has embraced new technologies which surround us daily with instant connections. Literally hundreds of thousands of names can become, fans, followers, connections and ...friends.

We now have opportunities to "friend" multitudes and interact with people locally and globally at a moments notice. Opportunities are good - what we do with them is what defines us as human beings.

A long time ago my daughter asked me, innocently and without the dark shadows of experience, one of those questions that fathers remember forever "Daddy how many true friends do we have in life?"

I thought and responded - "I suppose that is determined by your definition of a true friend." As we add thousands upon thousands of connections the opportunity to find more true friends increases, that's a very good thing. With all of these opportunities - How many are true friends? "I suppose that's determined by your definition of a true friend.

Hopefully all of us have a few very special, true, friends. I have a handful. One is an old special forces soldier who dug a chunk of hot metal out of my hip many years ago in a land far away. One is an old gunny who goes fishing, shares a steak and puts up with a guy who talks more than he listens. One is a respected leader of industry who taught me about sales and business. One is my Dog. And one is my daughter who makes me proud. A wise man once said if you have five true friends in your life you have been blessed. ~ I believe him.

True friends do what most friends don't or won't. They show up when others leave. They are selfless, loyal and dependable at the worst times. They are rare and true. No matter how many friends we have. No matter how many connections we make. No matter how many follow and like us. It is the tested ones, the ones that remain true during and after conflict that matter. True friends are not found in comfort - they reveal themselves through challenge. We will all have many friends in our lives but true friends are really hard to come by

And well ~ They should be.

Memorial Day.

"Words could never express how much I owe you.
From the very depths of my soul. ~ Thank You."


Why Don't You Write a Book?

"Endure and persist; this pain will turn to good by and by." ~ Ovid.

There was an old man who lived on the far side of town who the other kids would talk about. He was a soldier in the war they said. When times got tough the other old men would ask him what to do - but when times were good he sat alone. If you want to know what to do go ask him for advice - but don't expect to like or agree with what he tells you my friends would say. "Oh and be ready for the test".

I went to see the old man during a winter blizzard and he met me at the door. Take off your shoes and walk back home in the snow. Get me a cup of sugar and walk back here barefoot and then we will talk - he said. "What are you crazy? I will freeze and my toes will get frostbite" I said. Ok - Then go read a book he said.

I thought "How will he know if I really take off my shoes?" Maybe I can just tell him I did and take them off for the start and the finish. But eventually I decided to do what he said. I took off my shoes, trudged through the snow and got him his cup of sugar and then I sat down with the old man. Why do you test me all the time? I would say to him and he would simply respond "We all like to learn but no-one likes to be taught". Why don't you just write a book with all this stuff so people can read what you did in the war, what it was like growing up in the orphanage and tell us some things you've learned in business?

He replied - My experiences are no different than anyone else's. They may entertain and amuse some people but that is all they are, my experiences. To truly understand you need to take off your shoes, walk back home through the freezing snow and go get me a cookie.

I think a lot about that old man. He was providing an opportunity to personally experience hardship - He was testing how much I really wanted to learn. He was, by all normal thinking, asking me to do and experience dangerous, crazy stuff that made no sense. It was up to me whether i took it, denied it or learned anything from it. I learned, as we all learn, through experience - Endure and Persist.

Why You?

"You were born an original. Don't die a copy." ~ John Mason.

There's a new paradigm in play. People are calling it Personal Branding, Social Networking, Connections, Followers, Fans and Tweets. But it's not new - it's been around since the dawn of time. We are now looking at people a bit more. We can buy stuff anywhere, and we all want to deal with good companies, but people are now asking

"Why You?"

Why should I connect with, follow, listen to, or buy from you personally?

Why You as opposed to someone else?

When buyers want more than a simple transaction ~ They are now personalizing. The old standards of company features, benefits and price may not be enough anymore after that initial transaction. Stuff is now easy to get anywhere.  Relationships need to be maintained with YOUR content, Value and What YOU Provide. Your Personal Brand.

Yep you're unique ~ But so is everyone else. If we all say the same thing, promise the same stuff, service & solutions, we really don't have a personal brand. Good company brands may get us in the door but once we are in front of them, once we're on their radar most people,

Most buyers are now asking one simple question:  ~ "Why You?"

What Do Women Want?

"And verily, a woman need know but one man well, in order to understand all men; whereas a man may know all women and understand not one of them." ~ Helen Rowland.

First let's get the subject line out of the way - Any man who thinks he has the answer is an idiot. There are guys that think they know and maybe some women will agree with them but take it from a guy who has wandered, lived and loved from the farthest reaches of Asia, through the largest cities and smallest villages in Europe. From New York to California and the heartland of the bible belt in America

What Do Women Want? ~ Men Don't Know.

With that said an intelligent, strong and challenging partner can bring out the very best in us. Whether white, yellow, black or brown women bring out the best, and worst, in men. What do they want? - I don't know - but from this simple guys perspective it seems to come down to strength of character, a touch of understanding and a willingness to believe and pursue ideals and values bigger than self interest while pragmatically shouldering at least an equal share of the responsibilities. Stuff all men wish we had more of. Some want more... But most seem to want a dreamer that is also willing and able to do.
A Man Who Will Be And Do What Others Can't or Won't.

It's no different now than it's ever been.

We all want someone who brings out and shares the very best in us.

Be Original.

"Don't let the opinions of the average man sway you. Dream, and he thinks you're crazy. Succeed, and he thinks you're lucky. Acquire wealth, and he thinks you're greedy. Pay no attention. He simply doesn't understand." ~ Robert Allen.

Ever notice how the most interesting people are really extreme?
There are stories told about men and women who were extreme but not many are told about the average guy. There are emotions, opinions and actions taken both for and against the extreme but not for or against the average guy. The average guy is a statistic. A benchmark for others to fare better or worse against. The average is hardly original.

The average guy is the aggregate of all our fears. He does what he has always done and gets what he always got because he thinks what he always thought and associates with those who rarely challenge him.

He fades away and no-one notices. He leaves no mark, no impression and barely a footprint. We remember him vaguely, no more, no less. The original guy, the extreme guy, leaves a mark for better or worse. He is black and white. He isn't gray. The original guy, infuriates, irritates, inspires and initiates. He's original and extreme.

We all respond to the original and the extreme.

Simple Sales Rules.

"Sales are contingent on the attitude of the salesman, not the attitude of the prospect." ~ W. Clement Stone.

Why do we complicate sales? The lessons from great sales and business people are timeless and very straightforward.

What are those lessons? There are 2 Rules, 2 Questions and 2 Laws.

2 Rules:
  • "When we think we know - We don't." (Get out of your own way - Listen & Learn)
  • "No Excuses" ~ Reasons are excuses - it's all up to you - Period.
2 Questions:
  • What Do They Want? (Emotionally, what does the prospect want?)
  • When Do They Want It?
2 Laws:
  • Sell the person not the product. Paint pictures ~ Tell stories ~ Ask Questions
  • We all buy emotionally. Then rationalize (not vice versa) 

They Watch You.

"We are apt to forget that children watch examples better than they listen to preaching" ~ Roy L. Smith.

I admire and respect good teachers, parents and coaches. There is a certain recognition when someone does something extremely well, a respect, an admiration. In any field they stand out but those that inspire us, teachers, parents and coaches connect with our future. It's a cliche, I know, but before children become knowing, jaded and cynical they are our future. The time when they mimic us, knows no boundaries. This is the time filled with possibilities and perils.

Before they become the worst of us we can influence them to become the best of us. I love good parents, teachers and coaches, they bring the best out of our children. So how do we teach them well?

By recognizing that children watch us always. ~ Please Watch:

Look for Passion.

"Nothing great in the world has ever been accomplished without passion." ~ Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel.

There was a time when you could size up the character of a man by just looking at the heels of his shoes, those days are long gone. There was a time when you could simply ask "Who do you admire and who do you respect" and the answer would fly off the tip of their tongue without a thought. Those days are long gone. So how do you quickly determine the fillies from the flakes today? ~ You look for passion.

"Tell me what you are passionate about". Tell me what you love - what you hate. Talk to me about the people that you love being around and the things you love doing." Tell me what inspires and motivates you.

Then listen very carefully. Can this person immediately dive into a passionate discourse or do they have to sit back, ponder and think?
If they have to sit back, ponder and think - If they don't immediately know what they love - If there is no passion ~ kick them the hell out.

We Need 2 Razors.

"Given a choice between two theories, take the one which is funnier." ~ Blore's Razor.

One of the most unappreciated joys of a mans life is found in shaving. It's a daily ritual that soon becomes rote but when appreciated for its ability to cleanse and refresh is surely one of life's more simple pleasures. But what about mental shaving? The reduction of life's complexities into simple, understandable concepts. There are two "razors" that I find particularly interesting and use every day. Hanlon's razor and Occam's razor. Two razors that make life just a little simpler.

Hanlon's Razor is an adage which reads: "Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity."

Occam's Razor states "When you have two competing theories, that make exactly the same predictions,the simpler one is the better."

Two razors that we can all use daily to make life just a little simpler.

Why We Fail.

Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in rising up every time we fail." ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson.

Everyone likes to talk about the secrets to success. Well... They are hardly secrets - but that's another blog post. But why do we fail at any goal, objective or task in life? Failure, as everyone knows, is a critical ingredient to success. We need to fail, fall short, and keep getting up again to achieve anything worthwhile ~ that's one of life's basic rules. But why do we fail at anything? ~ The real answers are... we were:

  • Too Lazy - we didn't work hard enough.
  • Too Stupid - we didn't learn from others who succeed.
  • Too Weak - we didn't have the drive to do what it takes.

So there it is - Every self improvement book on the planet condensed into three bullet points. What's the good news? We can do something about every single one of them - We Can Get Better as long as we accept the very basic premise. ~ It is and always was us.

Japanese Tea Ceremony.

"If man has no tea in him, he is incapable of understanding truth and beauty." ~ Japanese Proverb.

The Japanese tea ceremony is a remnant of a quieter time.
The ceremony, or Cha-no-yu, meaning “hot water for tea”, is more than an elaborate ritual. It is an interlude in which one leads oneself for the moment to a spirit of beauty, quietude, and politeness toward others.

The ceremony may be practiced anywhere, at home or in a teahouse. Take it from a 'Gaijin', The Japanese tea ceremony is a ritual of quiet contemplation and appreciation - a serene thing of beauty.

There are 4 principles: harmony, respect, purity, and tranquility
(wa, kae, sae, jubuo)
  • Harmony: with other people and with nature.
  • Respect: a harmonious relationship with others.
  • Purity: cleansing oneself through the five senses - hearing with the sound of water, sight with the beauty of the flowers, touch with the utensils, smell as we smell the bouquet of the flowers and the aroma of the tea, and taste when drinking the tea.
  • Tranquility with ourselves, surroundings, people and nature

What is a Mentor?

"Mentor ~ Someone whose hindsight can become your foresight."

In Japan they call them Kohai. In England Apprentice and in America Protege. We are those who defer to and learn from mentors. What is a mentor and why do so few people really have them? A mentor is not a coach, a teacher or an adviser although they may perform each of those roles. A mentor challenges and takes you to places inside yourself that you wouldn't go on your own. A mentor is a contrary force. A mentor isn't a support system for what you believe or would do anyway. A mentor provides new and challenging stimuli, hurdles that you believe are too high. Ideas and concepts that you have difficulty with. You defer to a mentor - otherwise why would you need one? A mentor is rare - you don't choose them. They choose you.

Swimming with Sharks.

"Smile and say no until your tongue bleeds" ~ Harvey Mackay.

It's so easy to say yes. Yes to yet another feature, yes to a price concession, yes to a mediocre design, yes to lowering a personal standard, yes to anything - yes, yes, yes. We all want to be liked, loved, accommodating and nice. It helps you get more business right? No it doesn't. It establishes you as someone without standards, without qualifiers, someone who will say yes to anything and stands for nothing. Are you someone who is so afraid of losing the deal you will say yes to anything? What's the first rule of negotiation? You must be willing to walk away. Harvey Mackay said it best in his book "Swimming with Sharks" "Smile and say no until your tongue bleeds." Or say yes to everything and build your reputation as a yes man.

You're Smart.

"Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication" ~ Michelangelo.

A long time ago I gave up on the idea of being smart. I'm not smart.
Simple seemed to make more sense. I noticed that smart people - the really smart people - helped me understand things without giving their opinion. By just telling stories. They painted pictures with words.

They didn't really care which path my mind took or which decision I made. They just composed a tune and I started to get the beat. There's lots of smart people and lots of artists out there but not a lot of smart artists who can weave stories, paint pictures and conduct symphonies into compelling caricatures so simple folks like me can understand.

If you really want to be smart - paint people a picture with a story.

The human brain and heart work in concert like a computer program, artists canvas, classic novel, movie screen and musical symphony.

Smart people know this.

Most Beautiful Places.

"Travel can be one of the most rewarding forms of introspection."
~ Lawrence Durrell.

What are the three most beautiful places on earth? Where are the places that a simple guy would recommend everyone fly off to and spend some time to drink in the sights, sounds & pure majesty of the very best our planet has to offer. I'm sure there's many but here's mine.

Ko Phi Phi ~ Thailand.

Engleberg ~ Switzerland.

Alaska ~ USA.

Waiting For...

"Why people have to complicate a thing so simple I can't make out." ~ Samuel Beckett

The great author commented on the many interpretations of his play Waiting for Godot. Recognized as one of the finest pieces of literature ever written Waiting for Godot prompts heated discussion and controversy as to it's meaning. It reinforces one of the absolute truisms of life, art and humanity. 'Less' forces us to look for 'More'. But as Vladimir so poignantly observes "There's man all over for you, blaming on his boots the faults of his feet". We each make our own life - We find our own meaning. Whether life is absurd, meaningless or a series of repetitive routines is irrelevant. Life is Simple if we choose it to be. What does it mean? Does it matter? What Are You Waiting For?

Being a Father.

"You will find that if you really try to be a father, your child will meet you halfway." ~Robert Brault.

I got very lucky raising my daughter. She makes me proud. So when a friend, expecting his first born, asked for advice I paused to reflect. There are lots of books and millions of psychological insights on how to raise the perfect child. But my view? I tried to keep it simple. What's my advice? Strive to Be a Better Man. Children watch and children choose. Children choose their influences. They watch and choose.

They either choose your character, your habits and your values or those of others. Sometimes they will make the easiest and not the best choices. Hopefully they will learn. Ultimately their choices become character. We influence our children - they either choose our character traits or those of others. So what have I learned about what it takes to be a father? Strive To Be A Better Man.

Strive To Be Their Best Choice.

Measure Success.

"Measure What You Manage" ~ Lord Kelvin.

It wasn't Peter Drucker who said "Measure What You Manage."
It was the scientist Lord Kelvin who originally stated " When you can measure what you are speaking about and express it in numbers, you know something about it; but when you cannot measure it, when you cannot express it in numbers, your knowledge is of a meager and unsatisfactory kind; it may be the beginning of knowledge, but you have scarcely in your thoughts the advanced stages of science".

This became abbreviated, revised and attributed to many management gurus. Success Can Be Measured Daily. Pick a personal data point - Dollars, Calls, Contacts, Hits, Followers, or whatever and establish your daily average performance. Then strive to exceed it.


"Real knowledge is to know the extent of ones ignorance"
~ Confucius.

A Simple Guy has found that the most difficult insights to accept and embrace are often the most powerful. We all find support, intellectual comfort and confidence from the advice, opinions and beliefs we agree with. They make us feel good. But we learn the most from the stimuli and contrarians that challenge us. There is no comfort in cognitive dissonance but there is opportunity. How we respond to adversaries teaches us about ourselves. When We Think We Know - We Don't.

Never Miss It.

"The sun has not caught me in bed in fifty years." ~Thomas Jefferson.

I'm up at 4am every day. Why? Lots of little reasons & one big one.
The little reasons include: The people I meet that are up that early.
The guy at the coffee shop who comes in from Mexico every day to serve, clean the shop and provide for his family. He smiles, works hard and makes me smile. The roads are clear and the people out are driven to get started before others - there's a shared connection - a shared understanding. There is an opportunity to get more done before others get started and add at least four hours to my day, four focused hours.

But more than all those little things there's one very big thing.
I've never been late for anything - living by a slogan that says "If I'm not on time it means I'm not coming" and there is one thing I never want to miss. Watching the Sun Rise - she is never late. I have seen every sunrise in my life. Watched every time she has majestically climbed and filled the sky with a new day - a new opportunity - a new chance to do something better. I never want to miss a sunrise. That's why I get up at 4am. ~ She fills me with awe, humility and appreciation.

Simple Marketing.

"Doing business without advertising is like winking at a girl in the dark. You know what you are doing, but nobody else does". ~ Stuart Henderson Britt.

Ever notice how the most simple marketing messages engage us? Today we are bombarded with marketing from media sources and venues that multiply daily. The Web, Social Media, Email, Video, TV, Radio, Print and a veritable plethora of voices are vying for our attention. Most of it is just noise. Lots of "experts" promising insights, riches and pleasures. Promising to make us wiser, our lives easier and more fruitful. Asking us to buy or buy into what they've got.

OK I'm listening but let's get to it. Grab My Attention and then hit me, amuse me, astound me, inspire me and motivate me to do something. Why can't we keep it simple? Perhaps if we just said two words like "I Work - I'm Better - I'm Cheaper - I'm Smarter - I'm Reliable. Sent that message out with a consistent look and feel and had others corroborate it with empirical evidence and data then the message would get past the noise and make more of an impact. Perhaps then we could simply say "Do This". Perhaps if we just said two words, tied them to an emotional need and made the picture that's painted appealing people might pay attention.

Perhaps if those two words were the basis of our brand and reputation we would gain a following. Make it appealing and targeted. Make it a visual and sensory treat. But let's make it simple - I'm a Simple Guy. A couple of words, a targeted message, a picture and a call to action - Simple Marketing.

My Dog.

"The average dog is a nicer person than the average person."
~ Andy Rooney

My goal in life is to be as good a person as my dog already thinks I am. I love my dog, Winston (named after Churchill). They say that the more people we meet the more we love our dogs - well there may be some truth to that. I certainly appreciate the character traits he has that make him a loyal friend and me one happy camper.

I feed him but he could feed himself. He watches other dogs bark and just stares at them rather than barking back - he's pretty confident that they're just barking. He's loyal and attentive, strong and brave. Friendly and focused. I can sit with him for hours staring into the sky and talking about dreams, hopes, business and people and he just listens. I lay with my head upon his chest and listen to his steady heartbeat.

He's always there regardless of circumstance and challenge. Regardless of who I know, what I have accomplished, or failed to accomplish, and without concern for how much or how little I have - He's there. He's ready to walk beside me no matter where I decide to go - without needing to be convinced he will follow. He's my friend.

He knows when I'm down and sits quietly beside me. But when the time comes to play, to catch, to run and jump he's like a puppy dancing in heaven. I share his joy.

If asked to name the characteristics I wish I had more of - I'd say - Just watch my dog. If asked to name the characteristics of a perfect friend I'd say - Loyal, intelligent,selfless, dependable, playful, steadfast and strong. Just like my dog - I couldn't ask for a better friend.

Your Elevator Pitch.

" For Sale - Baby Shoes - Never Worn"
. ~ Ernest Hemingway.

I Love Elevator Pitches - But I think 30 seconds is too long. I Love Personal Branding but think there is way too much fluff and not enough difference. Give me something that intrigues, astounds me and makes you out to be one in a million. Then have others corroborate it. Now we're talking good stuff. Your Value Proposition, Elevator Pitch and Personal Brand should be condensed into no more than 10 seconds - at most. It's the essence of what you are distilled into just a few words.

Use Ten seconds & Ten Words to get their attention, stimulate curiosity and compel them to want to learn more. The best of all time was six simple and powerful words written by Ernest Hemingway

" For Sale - Baby Shoes - Never Worn".

Remember, Elevator Pitches, Personal Brands and Unique Selling Propositions are only credible when others corroborate and reinforce them. Make yours crystal clear, compelling, concise and above all credible. I Love Good Elevator Pitches - What's Yours?

Get Over Yourself.

"Example isn't the main thing in influencing others - it's the only thing." ~ Albert Schweizer.

Nobody Cares What You Think. They Care What They Think. However we all fall prey to the me syndrome don't we? We all think our opinion is unique and important - it is but then so is everyone else's.

So how do we become a person of influence, a thought leader, someone who is respected enough to make a difference? How do we become a person who whispers an insight and people pay attention? How do we avoid the drab mediocrity of being just another face in the crowd, a voice in the wilderness shouting "I'm here" with no-one caring enough to listen? How do we make a difference?

How do we get people to take action? It's Simple. Since the beginning of time it has been - You Set An Example and you may, in time, become respected by the influencer's and thought leaders out there.
In the timeless words of a very wise man, to make a difference:

"Be the change you want to see in the world" ~ Mahatma Gandhi.

One Question.

"A life unexamined is not worth living." ~ Socrates.

Our Average Life Expectancy is 79 years. What Did We Do with those 79 years or 28,835 Days. What have You Done? Even if we don't get asked the question - Shouldn't We Ask it of Ourselves?

We are here one day and then we are not here. Family and friends will grieve and then carry on. What will they remember? What will others say? Does it matter? Maybe Yes - Maybe No. Regardless. We have 79 years - give or take. We can't do anything with the days we've already had - But we can answer - What Are You Doing Today?

What Have You Done In Your Life? How will wyou answer this one question? What will you say? Who Have You Influenced? Who Influenced You? What Have We Done and What Are We Doing?

It's Only One Question.


"All creatures are flawed, but out of the flaw may come the universe".
~ Marguerite Young.

Want to know what would make the world a better place overnight? Want to know how to solve most of the frustrations and problems we encounter in our daily interactions? Ask 3 people you know really well to honestly tell you What They Think YOUR Biggest Weakness Is? (Preferably three people that don't like you very much) Then make a commitment to them and yourself to take measurable actions to improve that facet of your character. Most of us won't do it. But then again - some might. Do you really want to make this a better place ?

Then Start With Yourself - A Simple Solution from A Simple Guy.

A Simple Guy.

"As for me, all I know is - that I know nothing" ~ Socrates.

Hi I'm Dan Collins - A Simple Guy who went from Soldier to Salesman and ended up in the Corporate C Suite. Along the way
I noticed that a lot of people like to make things more difficult than they need to be. So I figured - Why Not Just Be A Simple Guy? I'm a guy who needs to understand a lot more about this thing we call life and honestly wants to learn how to make the things he sees in this world simpler.

So I decided to write a blog about Work, Wisdom, Warriors, Whiskey & Women. Me? I'm just A Simple Guy who came to America as a very young boy. I'm a guy who likes Steak & Sinatra, Beethoven and Basics. A man who Respects Focus over Fluff and Results over Reasons. I've found that the more people I meet - The more I love my dog. But every now and again I meet some really good people who make me smile. Hopefully this blog, Facebook, Twitter & Linked In will help me connect with those who see value in the random ramblings of a 'Simple Guy.'

Me? I'm just a simple soldier at heart who loves this country.

What do I know for sure? ~ Not much.

But I believe that America is truly the land of opportunity
as long as we work hard and keep striving and I'm honestly convinced that:

"When We Think We Know - We Don't.

When We Think We're Good - We're Not."