Your Intended Message
Communication Techniques from a Retired Spy: JJ Brun

Communication Techniques from a Retired Spy: JJ Brun

January 27, 2022

Imagine being sent into a war zone with the mission of collecting information and influencing behavior of combatants.

Unlike James Bond, you don't have a license to kill, Nor do you have a fancy car and fancy devices.

You survive and succeed by communicating effectively.

Episode 79

JJ Brun was a "Contact Handler" in a war zone in Bosnia Herzegovina. His official title was Director General Intelligence Strategic Debriefing Officer. He was there to collect information from the people. He survived and succeeded in his role of building a large intelligence network of local people.

Ideas and concepts that we explore:

  • How to mentally prepare when you know you can't shoot your way out
  • The importance of appreciating names and getting them right
  • Why deception is not the best approach
  • Developing your listening and observing skills
  • Key phrases to build trust and encourage open conversation
  • Assessing personal types and adapting your approach

Get your free copy of "The 10 Most Effective Ice-Breaking Feel-Good Questions" by sending an email to

Learn more about JJ Brun and his services at the website

YES, you heard that right, JJ Brun offered to provide a no-charge workshop of up to 60 minutes on "Making Sense of the People Puzzle in Times of Change"

To learn more about that program and to arrange that for your team, contact JJ Brun at

Tell him you heard about this offer on the podcast, Your Intended Message.

His first book, Sell Naked on the Phone, sold over 60,000 copies.



Excerpts from this discussion with JJ Brun


Now a contact handler. Very unique skill set is a person where he or she is sent into a hostile environment where he or she has to cultivate sources within that environment and determine their intentions, or even modify their behaviours if and when required.

Without the use of any Jedi mind tricks. So my claim to fame within the intelligence community is that I was the first one volunteered to be a contact handler.

I was sent over to the UK to be trained to learn the skill sets and then I deployed into Bosnia Herzegovina being the first Canadian trained within this field since the Second World War.



Perfect. I was provided with my identity. Gov stories, funds, everything that I need all the little administrational aspect and I was provided with my weapon.

And that was a shock to me, because I was provided with a pistol two empty magazines that can hold 10 bullets each and 10 bullets, one pistol, two magazines, 10 bullets.

And I'm like, where's the rest of the bullets? As in? I've got two magazines. Should I not have 20 bullets?

To which we had an argument. Either I sign that off and I have to then come when I leave, bring back the pistol, the two magazine and the 10 bullets.

I was in trouble when I said to the gentlemen, what if I use one and I only bring nine bullets? Do I have to bring you the empty casing to prove that I've used one. He responded with if you don't bring me 10 bullets, you're going to get court martial.



JJ, I heard two, two points here that intrigued me. One is that you provided them with a voice. You were simply a conduit to allow them to have a voice. And my question is, why was that important to them? And even more than that, you said you had a network of bad guys. And why would the bad guys want you to convey their message?



Okay, well, the first one is that everybody wants to talk. And there's a saying, I don't know who's the author from this? Or who came up with this, but people don't care how much you know, until they know how much you care.

Right. That's a famous statement, and applies also across across cultures. Over there. There's different ethnicities? Well, back then he was the Serbs and Croats and the Muslims.

And everyone wants to be heard everyone wants to share their story. And you just have to provide them a safe environment where you want to receive their story.

And they want you to document they want you to to know that you're looking to make a difference. Now we were trained, we can't promise anything. You don't fake it, you don't promise the moon, you have to be authentic.

And quite often I would say, I can't promise you anything. Let me go back review what you've just shared with me. And Let's reconnect, when would be a good time for you Tuesday or Wednesday of next week, morning or afternoon, we'll book a meeting from a meeting.

And people, if you come with the sincere interest of sharing the story, right that their life mattered. And I was more of a reporter, in a sense of you're going there, you're looking to build a canal to find a connection with now, in every interaction we have with people either going to compete or complete that interaction.

Right, either going to compete or complete. Now, English is my second language. And when I'm reading the word complete and complete, one has the letter L. And so my brain was goes to well, What's the L factor in order to complete an interaction?

Until you can find a common link, a common luck or common love, no connection. As soon as you can find a common link common, like a common love, you have an opportunity to make that connection.


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Mission Driven CEO. What does that look and feel like? Ethan Martin

Mission Driven CEO. What does that look and feel like? Ethan Martin

January 20, 2022

Mission Driven Leaders have a higher calling, more than profit

Ethan Martin and his team at PFD Group coach high growth, mission driven companies to greater heights

Episode 78

In this conversation we explore:

  • What does it mean to be a mission driven leader?
  • How does that clear vision and mission nurture a strong team?
  • Why might three year goals and plans be more successful?
  • Why it's okay to adjust plans along the way?
  • What does love have to do with it?
  • What can an entrepreneur learn from flying a plane?


Ethan Martin is president of PFD Group. PFD Group focuses on helping high growth companies identify their strategic goals, build high performing teams, and execute their plans, by leveraging their expertise as industry CEOs.

Learn more about PFD Group here


Ethan Martin is Rockefeller Habits and 3HAG certified. He is author of "The Mentorship Engine" 



Ethan Martin is a pilot who also teaches entrepreneurs to fly and make the connection between flying and entrepreneurship.


Excerpts from this conversation with Ethan Martin



What we're seeing with our clients all over the world, George, is the importance of having a higher calling tied to your business. When there's, we call it a BHAG.

This is from Jim Collins and the fantastic research that Jim has done with From Good to Great, and his other books, especially Beyond Entrepreneurship 2.0, which we absolutely love, just so much wisdom in that book.

As leaders, we have a calling, we have an opportunity to truly steward the lives of those people working for us. And what we see when we align our business to a higher calling, some big problem that may take most of our life to solve, if not even beyond our lives.

Iit helps us to attract and retain the best talent. people I think we are realizing from this pandemic, that life is short, and who we choose to spend our time with is critically important.

And so when as leaders, we align ourselves to these higher calling what's really on our heart, what we're really passionate about, it is amazing how that is really key to building a great business that will grow, that will be very profitable, that will really solve everything.

But it all begins with having that kind of powerful mission tied to your company.



So it goes beyond simply being in love what you do. It sounds like there's some direction setting and prioritizing of what exactly you're going to do.



Yeah. It's one of the things we see with all of our clients is it's important to have a vision.

And this is created with a CEO in collaboration with his or her leadership team really important to pick what mountain are we going to climb?

Where do we want to be in about 10 years?  Where we want to be in three years - because three years is this magical timeframe.

George, in terms of communication being so, so clear, we'll oftentimes see in companies we call this mid mountain fog.

Where if the leadership team has this bold vision, but they haven't kind of chunked it into like a three year time frame, that's real. Because in three years, we have 12 quarters, to make all kinds of great investments, and people and product and partnerships, all kinds of things can happen.

But it's also close enough in that it's real. We see a lot of companies struggle with things like a five year wild ass guess, where the CEO, the leadership team, the ambassadors, all know, there's really not a lot tied to it, and then ends up being really stressful, because no one's really sure how to get there, or who they need to get there.

So three years becomes absolutely magical for really focusing leadership teams around where they want to go.


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What can we learn from a motivational speaker from Russia? Pavel Verbnyak

What can we learn from a motivational speaker from Russia? Pavel Verbnyak

January 13, 2022

Motivation is like a shower. You need it every day.

We are individuals, yet we each need our daily shot of motivation in our own way, every day. What might we learn from Pavel Verbnyak, a motivational speaker from Russia?

Episode 77

On this interview, Pavel Verbnyack from Moscow, Russia, offers his insights about pursuing success - and helping those around you do the same.

You might believe that the definition of success various by person, nation, perspective and challenges - and you would be right. You might be surprised that the challenges and techniques to motivate and grow are similar, regardless of circumstances.

How do you find mentors?

What do you need to do each day to think, feel and do more success?

Why you should not fear the word, "No".

The power of books that you have at your fingertips.

Why you might stop searching for the latest thing and instead look back 2,000 years.


PS: You might notice that that my (George) audio is poor on this episode. I apologize. I got a new Logitech camera which messed up my microphone settings. Go figure.

I trust that you will enjoy this discussion with Pavel Verbnyak. He's a young Russian who is clearly motivated and motivating and striving for greatness.





Excerpts from this conversation with Pavel Verbnyak


Yeah, thank you for your question. George. I had a very nice wise grandfather, who who just participated in World War Two. He was born in 1923. And he is my first role model.

He passed away around 90 years old in 2013 and he was always positive. He loved people. He had hundreds of friends in the city we lived in and he taught us - me and my brother because my father passed away when I was seven and my grandfather was like a father.

He didn't blame others. He understood everything if he got some people who, maybe I did something wrong with him, but he, I didn't hear any bad words from from him.

And the same for me, George, when I shared with him, he taught me to play chess, he, I felt this love from him and his acceptance for who I am. It doesn't really matter if I took some mistakes, and, and even this dream, this goes, he and my mom supported me,

George, but first couple of years, I didn't share with all of my thoughts and ideas to them. I just did something every single day. I have some books. I've read, I developed myself. Absolutely. They know what I do. But they supported me.

Yeah, George, it's very important to have this kind of support. And if someone is negative to you, don't say you don't share your goals and dreams. Just do something.

When you develop yourself. Other people will see Wow, he's different while he's doing something nice, while he's confident or he's getting better. And because of that, they started to ask you Wow, George, Pavel, what do you do you are different now?

What what do you read? What can you recommend me. And if they ask you, you can recommend that. But I never recommend or provide some ideas or thoughts to people who doesn't ask me to do that.

So it's very important, George. And support is very important. But it doesn't really matter. If nobody is supporting you. You have yourself you have your supporting group, by yourself just one person, you can do something great just by yourself, and other people will support you on your journey.


Right, George. And there are a lot of beautiful books.

So read, decide exactly what you want and read that kind of books. If you would love to become a great salesperson. Great. books on sales, or negotiation or psychology of communication of in something like that.

If you would love to be to become successful, you should learn from successful people, you should model successful people.

If we think and act as other successful people think and follow the law of cause and effect, we become like them step by step.

And we can achieve these kinds of results or them. So the cause and effect goes, thoughts and action and effect its results.

So 1000s of people achieve that kind of results and goals and successes we would love to achieve.

So learn from them, ask for help, ask for recommendation, write them a message, send them a message in LinkedIn as I did with George. And if they say no, okay, next, no.

Next, would you become my mentor? Next? No. But someone say yes, someone would ask George says, Yep, I would. I would love to talk with you in a zoom. Let's, let's get to know each other.

And that's why we became friends, and I'm on your podcast because I send a message.

But most of the people say No, today in their hands in their heads. They say no, he's, he's, he's too busy. He's so successful, he's going to say no to me. But this eliminate this fear of rejection, eliminate this fear of, of failure, fear of you and success.

And so there are a lot of limiting beliefs and fears. You should go forward to your dreams and you will achieve great results and ask for help. Ask for what you want.


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Podcast Guesting for the C Suite: Brandy Whalen

Podcast Guesting for the C Suite: Brandy Whalen

January 6, 2022

If you are a business or community leader how can you succeed as a podcast guest?

Brandy Whalen is a facilitator of meaningful conversations.

She is co-founder of Kitcaster, an agency that books and prepares leaders to appear on podcasts.

Episode 76

Our discussion explores podcast guesting as an avenue to convey your messages in a more meaningful way.

Why would leaders appear on podcasts?

Why is podcasting a more attractive channel than social media?

How can you prepare to be an effective and memorable guest?

What can you do to feel more comfortable when being interviewed?

How can you convey a more human feel to your message?

What can you do when the host stumbles or asks inappropriate questions?


Kitcaster books business leaders on the right podcasts to best convey their intended message. 

Learn more and Kitcaster and their services here.



Excerpts from this discussion with Brandy Whalen of Kitcaster podcast agency...



Who would want to be on a podcast as a guest? And why?


Well, I think that anyone and everybody should be on a podcast, I tell our clients that everyone has a story to share with the world.

It's just sometimes people have a little bit more of a hard time finding their story.

Our clients are typically C level executives. So they are CEOs CFOs, head of human resource CTOs. They're looking to get in front of audiences to really showcase their expertise in whatever whatever area they they tend to land.


Are they delivering a corporate message? Or is it more of a personal message?


Yeah, that's a really that's a really good question, George. And, you know, I love the the name of your podcast, your intended message, because I feel like I that is what I preach every single day.

And really, what I tell our clients is that there is not a single podcast out there that I think would want to have you on as a guest to you can pitch your product or service.

That would be a terrible listen. What we tell our clients is that podcasts provide this unique opportunity for potential customers, customers, employees, to really get a good look at who it is that's behind the curtain of whatever company you're out there representing.

And maybe bring in your personal -  always bring in your personal story.

Then your professional journey as well.

No, it doesn't have to be a sales pitch.

You don't have to run through your corporate talking points. Those will come naturally if you do it right. And you're weaving the conversation together in a more organic way.


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Audea - the Youtube of audio content: Amit Kukreja

Audea - the Youtube of audio content: Amit Kukreja

December 30, 2021

With more than two million podcasts, It's time to create a YouTube of audio content

Audio publishing is exploding online with more than two million podcasts and 48 million episodes. How can this audio content be organized and searched?

Episode 75

Amit Kukreja (CEO & Founder) has launched  - the answer to the quest for organized and aggregated audio content. Let's learn more about this new platform, the gap it fills and the future of published audio online.

Why is audio content so attractive and easy to consume?

What are the missing pieces in podcast distribution?

Why are the podcast distributors unlikely to promote most podcasts?

What lessons can we learn from YouTube videos that can be applied to audio?



Excerpts from this discussion:


Let's find out about audio. And people might have said that, when TV came out that radio was going to die, but it didn't. It maybe even got stronger over the years. And people might have said that when when video came out, like YouTube came out, audio is gonna die. But it hasn't.

In fact, there's been a proliferation. And I believe the number of podcast audio podcasts is somewhere in the millions, which sounds crazy. What's happening? What's the attraction of audio? Why is it still here? And what in fact, why is it growing?



I think the recent pandemic definitely gave people a lot more time on their hands over the past two years, and they had more time to do different things.

And audio became one of those core forefronts of how they were ultimately consuming content.

I think one of the big things to understand about audio, and the reason I'm so bullish on it to the point where I made a whole technology company and platform around it, is that I think that it's sort of the next wave of how humans are going to be able to be productive, while still consuming content, content creation and production.

And as you said, the proliferation of it, there's never been a better time to be alive. If you are a content creator, whether you're creating articles, video or audio.

The problem with that no barrier to entry is that there are literally millions of billions of different pieces of content created every day and distributed on major technology platforms. If that's the case, the question then becomes what's vying for our attention.

And audio is one of those mediums where you don't need to stare at the screen, or you don't need to have a sort of intimate relationship with the with the content in a way that it consumes your time, you're actually able to do other things while consuming content on the go and the ability to be productive, which is what we all care about.

But still get the information, which is what we also care about, to me creates a symbiotic relationship with audio as a medium and content as a an emerging democratised way of people consuming different things.

So I think at that point, if audio has platforms that are able to support it and help a and are able to help get it discovered more in the mainstream, then it just becomes a no brainer in terms of how big it can get



Where do you see Audea a year from now. And five years from now.


Our goal is to get it to the point where we can hit critical mass, I think when we hit a critical mass, we'll be able to get some funding from venture capitalists. We tried to get funding over the past four months actually.

And it was such a rocky experience. It was a tonne of rejections. And it wasn't rejections in the context of the idea is bad. It was rejections in the context of you don't have the numbers, we need yet to justify giving you a couple million dollars.

Because it was a lot of cold emails to a lot of people in Silicon Valley. And I was getting the meetings, you know, people were actually sitting down and talking with me through Zoom. And these are meetings that are very hard to get with people who have very limited amount of time.

So the idea has the interest we know from the venture community. Now it's just a question of us building up enough intestinal fortitude, and empirical data to justify that this is an idea worth funding.

So, best case scenario a year from now I think we hit enough critical mass, we have 1015 20,000 users.

And at that point, we can get some funding from some venture capitalist. And once we get that funding, it's off to the moon in the next five years.


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Speak from the Emotional Perspective of the Audience: Neil Gordon

Speak from the Emotional Perspective of the Audience: Neil Gordon

December 23, 2021

To connect with your audience, they must realise that you understand them and care

Neil Gordon reveals the Silver Bullet of speaking.


We explore:

  • The problem that experts and knowledgeable speakers face
  • Why and how to take the focus off you and focus on your audience
  • How to make that emotional connection 
  • How to distill that complicated message into a silver bullet
  • The power of one idea
  • Valuing the listener more than the speaker
  • The fallacy about information


Neil Gordon is a former editor at Penguin Book where he worked with New York Times bestselling authors. Neil helps speakers transform their audiences into audiences that are attentive, transfixed, hungry and empowered. Neil wasn't a natural with words. For most of his first 20 years, he abhorred reading. Then a switch flipped and he pursed writing and speaking with a vengeance.

Neil says there are 5 types of public speakers. Which are you? Take the free quiz here

Public Speaker Type Quiz

Learn more about Neil Gordon, his pubic speaking programs and the free introductory course here.

Neil Can Help



Excerpts from this discussion with Neil Gordon:


One of the things that so many speakers struggle with George is that they know a lot, a lot, a lot of information, they have a lot of knowledge, they've been developing their expertise for often decades.

But the larger issue they face is that they basically have forgotten what it's like not to know something. And then they go out on stage, or they give a virtual presentation, and they do what we call the show up and throw up.

They just vomit out all of their information. They cram. If they have 45 minutes to talk, they cram as much of their content into that 45 minutes as they can.

But for a person who doesn't know what they know, right, who is a newbie who is a beginner at whatever their subject matter expertise is, they might find value in all of that content.

But because learning is so metabolically expensive, it can be overwhelming. And then the friction comes when they don't actually look like they don't actually make anything actionable.

Once the talk is over and saying, Oh, that was really good. And then they move on, they really forgotten about it.

I know that I've been in an audience member like that many times over where I appreciated the value that they had to share. But I just couldn't sort it out in my own mind. And I couldn't make it actionable. Or at least I didn't. 



And when you talk when you coach a speaker, do they push back and say, but I can't leave something out? What if I leave something out? And they think I don't know.



Yeah. And what you are highlighting there, George is a larger issue that so many experts have and it's not even just picking on experts, people are like this, in general, is that they go about solving a problem from their perspective.

A person is going up on stage and they're thinking, Am I going to seem authoritative enough? Are people going to be paying attention? Are they going to have me back? Am I going to get Am I being paid enough for this? Or how do I actually get paid for this?

They're focused on their stuff. But effective communication values the recipient over the sender and they focus on the audience



How do we transfix the audience?

But the opening of a talk is sort of like the start of a race. A race has this really high point of tension...

On your mark, get set. And that moment, right between get set and go or the gun going off, is that highest point of tension, because anything can happen.

Anything is possible, but nothing yet has. And similarly at the start of a talk, you've walked out on stage, you're there, your audience is there, nothing has happened yet.

Anything is possible. It's very pregnant, a point of tension.

Versus saying, Oh, thank you so much. It's so nice to be here does is it squanders that tension and disperses it.

And one of my favourite examples is a former client of mine, and she had this big national keynote for her for company's national conference. And she just started with,

"A longtime friend of mine didn't know what to do."

And that was it. And at that point, you could hear the pin drop, because she took all that tension and she harnessed it.



I will give one piece of advice, per your question, George.

And that is to become absolutely religious, about the problems that your participants your employees are experiencing.

As they understand it, and to create your message as an extension of solving those problems to whatever extent you have the capacity to do.

And so again, people are most likely to embrace the solution must provide within the context of a problem they care about solving.

And if your solution, your vision for the company for the next quarter is a certain thing, they will get on board, much more likely to get on board, if you first help them to feel seen and heard.

It starts with the problem as they understand it.

You learn what are you guys struggling with right now? What does it feel like for you? And then you talk about that at the beginning, and then artfully transition into things from your own perspective, and they'll come along with you for the ride.


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The Empathy Effect on leadership communication: Dr Helen Riess

The Empathy Effect on leadership communication: Dr Helen Riess

December 16, 2021

Empathy is not an inborn trait. It can be taught and learned.

Dr Helen Riess is an empathy researcher at Harvard Medical School and a clinical psychiatrist at Massachusetts General Hospital.

We examine these aspects about empathy:

  • What is empathy and what is not?
  • Why is empathy critical to effective communication?
  • How might we demonstrate true empathy over fake sympathy?
  • How to guard against empathy overload?
  • How can leaders apply empathy in building their teams?

Dr Helen Riess is the author of the bestselling book, The Empathy Effect: Seven Neuroscience Keys for Transforming how We Live, Love work and connect across Differences.


Dr Helen Riess is the CEO and Founder of Empthetics, a tech ed company that offers online and blended empathy and relationship skills training for healthcare, business and law enforcement.




Dr Riess's TEDX talk "The Power of Empathy" has received more than 650,000 views. 


Excerpts from this interview:

Most of us have probably heard the word, many people probably have their own idea of what they think it is. Please tell us your definition of what Empathy means to you? And most importantly, what it's not.



That is a great opening question, George, because many people have a sense that they know what empathy is. But it's actually more than one thing. It's an umbrella term. Because people often confuse empathy with just being nice or kind.

Empathy is, is involved quite a few brain structures that enable us to perceive the emotions of others. Of course, that means we have to pay attention to the emotional signals, right? So it helps with perception of emotion, it helps with taking the perspective of other people. So it means taking off our own spectacles and putting on the lens that somebody else is wearing to see the world through their eyes.

Empathy involves what's called an effect sharing, which means that when we see somebody in an intense emotion, we actually share that emotion to some degree, because of how our brains map other people's emotions on our own brain structures, which is why when we see somebody really sad and sorrowful, sometimes we get a little misty and teary ourselves, or when we're around people that are just elated and happy it buoys everybody up.

That's called shared aspects or shared emotions. And then empathy works with all of these brain parts to process what other people are thinking and feeling. Which then motivates empathic concern, which is really what gets us to do things to help other people.

And then the output after we feel that concern, is what I call caring compassion, because that's what comes out of us. So empathy is really the input that allows us to perceive and understand and then based on many factors, including just how well we're doing taking care of ourselves, we have the ability to show caring and compassionate behaviour coming out of us.



I'm curious about the concept that empathy can be learned. So if it is a skill that can be learned and can be honed, where does one start? Where does one start to say, Okay? How's my empathy level? How do I improve it?



So, importantly, empathy is a mutable human trait, which means it changes, it's not the same, I don't have the same empathy every single day, and neither does anyone else.

When we talk about empathy, we have to realise it can be blunted. So as I said before, if you're around too much pain and suffering, you at some point, might have to limit your exposure, or take a breath and step back, or even take a day off.

Because there's only so much the human mind and heart can absorb. So when we tamp down empathy, we are at risk for losing it if we don't replenish, and we don't kind of reset to be sensitive to other people.

And the reason I got into all of this empathy research is that, through my own experience, working with patients and just reading the media, there has been a time when patients are really saying they don't get enough empathy and care from their doctors.

And I was seeing that as a major problem. Because if you don't feel cared about, you're not that likely to follow recommendations or even want to come back and see that doctor. I was really on a quest to see if if you can beat empathy out of people, can you also bring it back? And a lot of people said no, if once you burned out, that's probably it like, or maybe those people never had any to begin with.

And through my research, I realised that we are most empathetic when our challenge channels are open, when we're really focusing on the other person and not so much on ourselves.

And that there are ways to enhance our perception of other people, for example, by learning to read their faces accurately, because the human face is actually a roadmap of emotion. But if we're not looking at each other, you're going to be missing what people are feeling.

And of course, during this pandemic we're in when half our faces are covered, it's even more important to pay attention to what people are saying with their eyes. And, our eyes and our forehead is where most emotion is actually expressed.

So the good thing is that even if we cover our mouths, where we can, you know, it's easy to fake a smile, but it's very hard to fake the other emotions because they're expressed in the eyes.


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72 Austin McCulloh, How to Set the Stage for a Successful Sales Conversation

72 Austin McCulloh, How to Set the Stage for a Successful Sales Conversation

December 9, 2021

Why is opening more important than closing for success in sales? How to turn an apparent disadvantage to your advantage? 

Selling is a competitive pursuit, and it can be difficult. It can be challenging and rewarding. It doesn't need to be scary. It requires thought, preparation and habits. Most important is the mindset and self-talk. What are you telling yourself to win or sabotage your success.

Highlights from this conversation with Austin McCulloh

Rewiring your response to the word, "No"

Setting daily routines to maintain your energy levels

How to open the connection with a prospect and why this is important

How a guy only 5 foot 7 became a team leader in college football



Austin McCulloh, is a specialist in lead generation. He has personally made more than 16,000 prospecting contacts on Linkedin. He's helped his clients generate more than 25,000 prospecting contacts. He manages his energy levels and follows repeatable systems to build relationships and spur business growth.  

You can learn more about Austin and his services here

You can also book a free, no-obligation call on his calendar at the website.


Excerpts from this conversation with Austin McCulloh about the sales conversation:


I'm guessing that you gained lessons from that experience that has helped you today. And if there are one, two or three lessons from your experience playing football being a smaller guy than the rest of them, what what are those lessons that have stayed with you?


Hmm, that's a really good question. I've never had anybody actually asked me that question. The one thing that's coming to mind is, it's not always a bad thing to have disadvantages.

Now, was it a pain because I was smaller. So I didn't have the physics on my side. Yeah. But I believe life is always preparing you for where you need to go. And obviously, my intention was never or my plans were never to be in the NFL.

But because I needed to compete with these guys, much larger than I was on the football field, I had to work out harder, I had to work out more. And that taught me to be more consistent taught me to be more disciplined.

And for example, our coach even wanted to be one of those leaders who, whenever we're doing something and he was up on stage, he would always call me up to demonstrate an exercise when we were lifting.

So that taught me to be a leader in front of others of my actions, not just in my words. So I guess now that I'm an entrepreneur, and I have been for years, playing college football, especially at the size disadvantage ended up being a benefit, because it just taught me how to be consistent taught me how to be a hard worker.


And, if we talked about nothing else, Austin that that one point would probably make this interview valuable by itself.

So having a disadvantage is actually an advantage. Because you learn to get to get over the disadvantage. You learn to use it to your, your, your benefit.

And that's probably the best lesson especially when it comes to sales. Because selling anything is tough. There's you've always got competition.

Let's talk about the sales conversation. You help people improve and make their sales conversation more effective. Where does the conversation start?


That's a great question, George. So I always like to say there are four steps, okay. And I go from the first to the fourth, top to bottom for anybody who's watching.

The first point in sales is making the contact. The second stage right below that is the conversation and that's what we're going to come back to that's the answer to your question, George.

The third one is you need to set up meetings and is obviously the fourth is closing the business. So I kind of fumbled around so to recap this contact Conversation, meeting or meetings, and then new business close business.

So to answer your question, the most important one, there is the conversation. Because in today's world, it's not that hard to make a contact, especially on social media, you reach out to your family and friends, there are a lot of people who contact, okay.

When you get a meeting set, it's not as tough to make a sale. Because if you say the wrong word or their objections, we all know that it's easier to handle those actually on the call, and then closing business. Have you ever heard sales is about opening? It's not about closing?

You know what I'm talking about? Huh? Got it. A lot of people think it's about closing. So really, the bread and butter out of those four steps is in the conversation piece. And of course, I'm more than happy to elaborate on that.


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71 John Arms, Fractional Work - How does it work?

71 John Arms, Fractional Work - How does it work?

December 2, 2021

Fractional work. Is it right for you? Is it right for your team?

John Arms writes, speaks and advocates for the professional gig economy which is becoming part of the new normal for work. He serves as a fractional Chief Marketing Officer.


In this interview we explore:

How is fractional work different from consulting?

Why might fractional team leaders be attractive to a growing business?

Why might fractional work be attractive to experienced professionals?

How might a stagnant business leverage the wisdom of fractional team leaders?

What are the challenges of fractional work?

How might fractional workers freshen the workplace culture?


John Arms is co-founder of Voyageur University, a learning community for people transitioning to an independent career. Learn more about Voyageur U here.


You can get 30 days free with the code NEWTRAIL


Want to know more before you go further? Check this free guide book.


Find John Arms on Linkedin


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70 Jason Hunt, Social Media Marketing?

70 Jason Hunt, Social Media Marketing?

November 25, 2021

Does social media marketing work? When does it work best? How to integrate your online marketing funnel?

Jason Hunt is Co-founder of Merged Media, a full service digital marketing agency. We explore the integration of social media, paid advertising, lead magnets, podcasting and email within your marketing outreach.

To experience success with digital marketing, you need to connect the dots of the various platforms and approaches. Jason Hunt describes how that process works.

We explore the strengths and challenges of these platforms:

Facebook- still the ruler of the social media jungle

Google Ads - more pricey now, yet still effective because of the intent of the searcher

Linkedin - more focused on B to B 

YouTube - the video variation of Google

Tik Tok - it's evolving into more than a place for dancing videos

Pinterest - a visual experience most relevant for reaching national markets



Learn more about Merged Media and the Merged Marketing podcast


In this excerpt, Jason Hunt describes the funnel.


A great example of this is an episode that we recently did with a man by the name of Joe Garcia, and we talked about the five steps to manifesting your dream. Okay, that was the topic of the podcast episode. And we put it out there to the world of Facebook.

And what I did was this was important because the target audience is very important, the closer we can marry that message to the person seeing it, the better click cost, you're going to get better lead gen cost, you're going to get just got to marry that message up as as as the best as best as possible with that user that seeing it.

So in this specific episode, the five steps of manifesting your dream, it was a quick clip of Joe talking about one of those steps.

And we use that clip and targeted an audience of people that were entrepreneurs, but also showed interest in law of attraction. Okay, so by narrowing the audience down to not just entrepreneurs, but entrepreneurs that are interested in the law of attraction, this is a very good audience for this particular podcast episode.

So those click costs to get somebody from Facebook, to go to see that ad, watch the ad and then go over to our podcast was like three cents a click.


Links for Merged Media


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