What is the value of the people you know?

What is the value of the people you know?

The One Degree Difference is in the people you know. 

I recently came back from a conference called SANG, short for speakers and networking group.  And I have met several very, very successful people and what was really interesting to me is what I found is that you always perform up to the level of the people that you are working with.

I’ve work very hard to creating some relationships with some of these individuals because I know that I really have to step up my games significantly to bring value.  Let me give you an example, I met Bill Bartmann. Bill is a billionaire. I had known of his material through a company called iLearningGlobal.  He and I were on the faculty there – and his goal setting process is just phenomenal.

I went to this conference specifically to meet him because I knew he was registered. When I met him, I told him all my clients had to watch his videos on goal setting because they were so good. All he said was “That’s great here’s a login to my website take whatever information you need, plagiarize it, copy and use it as long as it provides value.”

As we explored how we might help each other he said “Let’s starts small. Prove to me you can deliver what you say. If you say you can deliver and you do then we can take the next step. If you don’t then there’s no reason for us to talk.”  I loved his directness. He wasn’t mean or malicious.  His comment was not made because it was angry. It wasn’t done out of bitterness.  It was just a statement of fact. What he was really saying was “I am a busy man and I want to work with successful people.  I have a strong need to achieve and if you can help me with that then we can do business, if you can’t we won’t.”

So, thank you Bill for that wonderful piece of advice and for helping me make a one degree shift in my thinking.  I wish more people could so direct and forthright as you. If you read this Bill, please know that I am very grateful for your comments and I promise to be more direct with my readers and clients. I’m passing your advice on to my readers. 

Ron Finklestein
Business Growth
Your Business Coach




ps. Please not Bill I will do what I said I would or you will be the first to know.




[Audio Ends]

What is Your Legacy?

What is Your Legacy?


I am often asked how to deal with the rapid rate of change, how to get more discipline and become more focused? If this is something you are interested in please read on but it is one of my more lengthy articles.


These questions seem to come from people being pulled in many different directions by sometime conflicting obligations: family, business, and customers, to name a few. I am experiencing these questions more and more and I want to share them because they seem to be a concern to so many people.


My answer is always the same.  I always ask the same questions. What do you do? Inevitability I always get the same respond. I am a stock broker, or an accountant, or a business coach or (fill in the blank). My response is always the same: that is not what you do, that is how you do it!


I then see a look of confusion set in. Sometimes the arms will fold indicating some defensiveness. Other times, they remain open but the confusion remains. What they are really saying is “What in the heck is this guy talking about?”


When they ask me that question I ask them another question, a specific, purposeful question. What legacy do you want to leave? How do you want your significant other, your children, your coworkers, and friends to think of you after your leave this world? What do you want your life to stand for? How do you want to be remembered? I ask these questions because this is what you do, your profession is how you answer these questions.


Some will say I want my family to remember me for always doing the right thing. Other will say I want to know I impacted many lives in a positive way. After further discussion I ask some clarifying questions such as “what does impact mean?” or “can you define positive?”


Maybe an example will help.


I recently met with someone who is a financial planner who was doing well and struggling to work less and work with higher net worth investors?


“What do you do?”

“I am a financial planner.”

“What outcomes do people experience in working with you?”

After a pause he said “we many products and services to handle most of your financial needs.”

“If I were to hire you, what would you tell me that differentiate you from the thousands of planner who want my business?

Short Pause

“I have these tools, and we do this, and etc”

I said “those are tools, tricks of the trade you use, what is the outcome I can expect in working with you?”

Longer pause

He finally said somewhat tentatively “we do not want to be greedy. We want you to make money. We put a plan in place that works for you, a plan you do not have to worry about. This allows you to sleep better at night knowing that that your finances are safe in these turbulent times?”


My comment back was “you help me get a good night sleep because we do not have to worry about risky investments, timing the market or any of that other stuff?




“Why do you do that?”


“Because it is the right thing to do!”


I said “so the legacy you want to leave is one of honesty, integrity and doing the right thing in dealing with others and they way you do that is through financial planning?”




“We can work with that!”


The financial planner was not just managing his clients’ money. He is saying that his legacy is teaching his children to do the right things. He is saying to his client’s I will take care of you because it is the right thing to do.


My next question to him was simply.


“If you want to manage money of people making millions and tens of millions of dollars, what behaviors do people who manage those kinds of portfolios do that you need to implement that allows you to be consistent with the legacy you want to leave?”


Let’s go back to the beginning of the article. How does this apply to be more disciplined in my business?




When you are faced with a decision you must test this decision against what you want to achieve in your legacy (or purpose). If what you are asked to do does not match up with your legacy/purpose then do not do it. It is that simple. The problem is getting clear on your purpose. The problem is thinking about your legacy. The problem is making a decision.


Many people are afraid of a making a decision because they do not know what they want or they are unclear how to achieve it.


Think about this for a moment: what kind of person must you become to achieve your purpose, to leave your desired legacy?


The purpose of this discussion is to help you become the type of person you want to be become and attract to you the type of person others want to work with and be with.


The purpose of this discussion is to help you make decisions based on something more important to you than what is convenient.


The purpose of this discussion is to simplify the decision making process so you focus on what is important.


In my case it is very simple. I want relationships that meet these criteria: I want to work with people who are honest, I want to work with people who have integrity, I want to work with people who believe in common sense.


Honest means they will tell what they believe to be right and fair and not lie to me.


Integrity means they will do what they say.


Common sense is defined as creating a win/win approach for both parties.


My life is simple. Every decision is based on those three criteria.


I have the same approach to my business. If I am approached with an opportunity, possible client, etc, I evaluate them the same way I do my other activities and I ask myself how doing a specific action will take me closer to my purpose. If it doesn’t I don’t, it is that simple for me.


As Stephen Covey says in his book Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, Start with the end in mind! The end in this case is your legacy.


Your business Coach


Ron Finklestein






Why Are Certain People So Stupid?

Why Are Certain People So Stupid?


When you write several books, produce several videos for Youtube, and write blog posts like I do, you get some less than positive feedback in emails, voice mails and comments on my videos. That should be expected. Some would say that is the price you pay for being a public figure.


I actually had one person laugh at me when giving a speech. She later came up and said she was not laughing at the concept I presented but was not comfortable with the material and that is how she deals with being uncomfortable. That is cool!


At this same speech I had several people applaud this same concept.


Different strokes for different folks.


The people I am talking about hide behind technology. These email, phone calls and comments come from people who use fake email addresses, call using unlisted numbers and create user ids with false info.


I have been called ni—er, Mother F——, and other names that cannot be printed, nor should they be.


I must say I am not offended by these comments. I am saddened that people will not pick up the phone (my number is at the bottom of each blog post) and tell me about why they feel the way they do. I am open to feedback. Who knows it may cause me to revisit a certain position. I am a continuous learner and I welcome feedback. One of my favorite tools is www.ilearningglobal.tv. It is a powerful tool. There are video on this site that I do not agree with. I may call the author and ask for clarification or I may chose not to watch any more videos from this person, but I will never call them names because I disagree with their thoughts.     


So why am I getting these rather expressive and inventive communiqué from people who feel the need to tell me how I am not eligible for the human race and then proceed to hide behind technology?


In my latest book Nine principles for Inspired Action: A New & Targeted Perspective, I discuss concepts that I understand can be challenging to some people. In this book I ask people to get selfish with their time, energy and money so they can achieve their Intelligent Self-interest.


Because we are limited in time, energy and money, it is hard to achieve anything unless we get clear on what is important (our purpose or Intelligent self-Interest) and make decisions accordingly. When we do that a most amazing thing happens: we become selfless. From all my research, this selfishness leads to selflessness.


When this happens you get clear on what is important to you. You take action that leads to an specific outcome. When this happens, it is possible to positively impact hundreds, thousands or potentially millions of lives.


Let’s take an extreme example. Walt Disney has a specific Intelligent Self-interest. In his selfishness he wanted to totally control the experience of people from the moment they entered the movie theater to the time they left. He knew people needed an escape from the pressures of the real world. He was very selfish in making this dream happen. Every decision he made was designed to implement his Intelligent Self-Interest. Was it easy for him? No. He filed bankruptcy on two different occasions.


Through his selfishness he became very selfless. All his efforts led to the creation of an entertainment empire that employs thousands of people, a company that creates movies that millions have watched and theme parks that give people a time away from the realities of the real world. All because Walt Disney was selfish. He was focused on his Intelligent Self-interest.


On a personal note the wizard’s dual between Merlin and Mad Madam Mim is my favorite. I could not wait for my children to see The Sword and the Stone and watch this scene.


Why are people bothered by this concept of selfishness? I am sure there are thousands of reasons: my religion will not allow me to think this way, my family taught me to…, I means I have to make a decision about what is important, etc… It is ok to disagree but do not be stupid about it.  


If you do not like what I write you have two choices: Do not read my material or call me and tell me why I am wrong. We can have a discussion that could lead to meaning change. When I first developed this concept call Intelligent Self-Interest, I asked some friends and associates for feedback. Some could not agree and told me the only reason they read it was because they knew me. Others thought this was foolish and could not accept it because it was against their personal and religious beliefs and still others (a majority) felt free to make changes to pursue their dreams. Other made it their own and they teach it to others.  


One person walked away from a safe government job to pursue a job in sales. Another left the partner track in her accounting firm to raise a family, still others have started businesses, change careers and made other life affirming changes after reading this material. This material is not right for everyone.


Here is one of the videos that is causing gas, indigestion and that burning sensation for some people. It is about 10 minutes. Give it a watch and post your comments.



Either leave a youtube message or respond in the comment section of this blog post. I would love to hear your thought and feeling about this video.


So to my stacker out there, you are out of luck. I will pray for you and wish you the best but you will not change my mind, tactics or approach.


In Your Service,


Ron Finklestein


234 738 1550

Time is Running Out

Time is Running Out!


I went to funeral today for a dear friend who died suddenly. He was 42. He worked out regularly. He was not overweight. He was socially active. He was a successful businessman. 


His heart stopped Sunday. The funeral was today (2 days later). 


The funeral home was packed to overflowing. There were easily 500 people there; not counting the people who were turned away. 


Here is what the speakers who did the eulogy spoke about. 


He was honest. Yes, there are honest used car sales people. One person talk about how he purchased a car from him because of the trust he inspired. A warranty was purchased at the same time. The company behind the warranty went out of business. This gentleman called the person he purchased the car from and told him about the problem with the warranty.  He offered to pay the entire cost of the repair.


His family talked about how he blossomed from a shy young man into a outgoing and successful business owner, who stilled called his parents every week.


His friends talked about how he remembered everything: names of family, birthdates, etc. 


His associates talked of his love of Michigan football (Alumni), his love of the debate and interaction, his parties, his respect for others, his integrity and the motorcycle he owned but never rode.


Time is running out. We do not know when we will be called.


If you were called today, would you have the turnout this gentleman had?


If you were called today, would you have people talking about your honesty, integrity, and passion for what you do? The impact you made in the lives of others simple because you did what you loved?


If you were called today, would your sister stand up and talk about how you cared so much for your nieces and nephews? How you took the time to send them a text message. How you took them on a field trip. 


Would you customers give testimonials about how much they trusted and respected you? 


Would your associates give testimonials about how they thought of you as family, not just an employer? 


What is the message you are leaving with others after each interaction? 


Are you living your life’s purpose? Is it reflected in what you say? Is it reflected in how you treat others? Is it reflected in how you treat your family? Is it reflected in what you do, who you are, and how you act? 


It was with Randy Geller. I will miss you my friend. 


Ron Finklestein


Learning from Failure

I coach many small business owners and they know what they need to do but they just are not doing the necessary action. 


The reason for not doing the work is simply: “I do not know how.” 


I find this to be a lazy reason from not doing something. When I ask them to commit they say I will try. LISTEN UP LADIES AND GENTLEMEN! There is no trying. There is only doing. In this economy we need action that leads to purposeful results, not action that leads to trying.


The client I am speaking of needs a clearly defined, measurable, repeatable and predictable sales process. She knows that, I know that, her advisory board knows that. After three months she has not even started.


She talks about quality of her product and the value her company provides but she cannot define either in a way that allows the customer to understand, in a way she can understand. If you cannot define it you cannot do it or achieve it – it is that simple. 


She does not have to know how to do it, all she as to do is start doing something. Building the kinds of processes I am talking about requires documenting what you do now. If you do not know what you are doing, make something up and start doing it. 


After you try it a few times, you begin to see what works and the types of questions you are being asked. Document them. When new objections are raised, document me the objection and the correct response. 


Begin learning from your mistakes. 


Success is nothing more the learning to fail forward. If you run your sales call one way and do not get the desired results, change it and try it again. Find out what works and document it so you can teach others. Being a success is not rocket science but it does require you to stop shooting from the hip. Plan your shot, take aim, become aware of the wind conditions, take a deep breath to get steady and pull the trigger. 


Ron Finklestein




Goal Setting

Several of my associates are using www.iLearingglobal.biz/ronf to help them with their personal and business growth. Below is an unedited email from one of them. I thought I would share it because this training works and works well.    

I got a lot out of the “Goal Setting” section; took some notes that might encourage others to get into the material.  There’s some good stuff there! Paul Martinelli:

  • You have to use your imagination, not reasoning when setting goals.
  • the reason we set a goal is not to GET something, but to BECOME something.
  • Don’t set a goal on what I THINK I can do….it has to be OUTSIDE my comfort zone to inspire me….That’s where all growth takes place
  • Don’t base any goals on OUTSIDE circumstances
  • Give all my creative energy to the GOAL, not the plan!  The HOW will always show up; be flexible.
  • Ask myself, is this goal worthy of me: I’m trading my life for my goal, it must be worthy of me.
  • Ask myself: what do I really want??? Then take off the lid of reason, and tap into my imagination.

Bill Bartman:1. Make sure it’s MY goal, and not someone else’s2. Don’t call it a “Goal”….The average person misses their goals 70% of the time.   My mind just can’t “unknow” this!
Instead, call it a PROMISE to myself.   Most people keep their promises!!!   (I really like this one; it’s shifted some things for me, and I feel much more SURE of achieving my promises to myself!)
3. Clearly identify the PROMISE.4. Use all the tools around you: people, support, what motivates you..5. Create a “Promise Plan”:   

  • What it is I’m going to do
  • When am I going to do it
  • Where will I be when this happens
  • Why do I want this; what is my passion
  • Who; whose help do I need?
  • How am I going to do it?  I can’t know this from where I am right now!   I only have to know what I want to do, and why…the HOW will show up.

6. Review the plan and the promise regularly.  Focus on it for 20 minutes daily.   (If it’s that important to me, I’ll FIND 20 minutes)7. Pay attention to what I’m saying to myself…tell myself what I can do, who I am….not what I can’t do   (Manage my self talk)8. Tell other people my promises- have confidence to do that.  It increases the risk; yet most people want to help…  be able to articulate what I plan to do.9. Envision the results before hand.

10. Start- take inspired action.

If you want access to the same training please click here to learn more www.learningglobal.biz/ronf

To purposeful action

Ron Finklestein



Nine Behaviors That Lead to Success

As a reuslt of my research, I was able to isolate nine specific behaviors that successful people implement in their business. Let’s discuss the nine behaviors.

1.     Selfishness … Selfishness is defined as intelligent self-interest. Intelligent self-interest means to understanding what is important. What is important is helping business owners be success. It is this intelligent selfish-interest that allows business owners to protect their time, energy, money and take action that leads to successful results.  

2.     Results … Successful people measure everything. Their actions are driven by the results they want. It is important to measure everything to ensure the actions being performed led to the correct results. This step can only happen when you take ownership.

3.     Ownership … Ownership states that I am responsible for what is happening in my business and my life. When a person takes ownership of his/her situation, change can be effected. Our job is to help you be successful but it is your business and you need to take responsibility for the outcomes you experience.

4.     People … Our success is largely dependent on how well we lead, communicate, manage, influence, and sell our ideas to others. Successful people understand this and they are consistently looking to surround themselves with other likeminded individuals to test ideas, receive feedback, improve their skills and be held accountable for doing what is important. These concepts are discussed in my book The Platinum Rule for Small Business Mastery.

5.     Persistence … The best laid plans rarely work out as planned. You know the old saying: “plan for the worst and hope for the best.” Successful people are flexible in implementing their plans; changing as the facts dictate while remaining true to their intelligent self-interest. 

6.     Discipline … When you measure your results a powerful thing starts to happen: you find out what works. Discipline means created measurable, repeatable and predictable processes that allow business owners to create corporate and business habits that anyone can learn. This makes it easier to pass along the corporate knowledge that leads to business success.

7.     Focus … Focus means asking two questions: Is what I am doing leading me to my goal? If not, then why am I doing it? When you are focused, you determined what is really important to implementing your goals as defined by your intelligent self-interest.

8.     Ideas … Many business owners suffer from a glut of ideas. Instead, they need to focus those ideas that specifically drive their goals and support their intelligent self-interest. Finklestein and his team create a third book called 49 Marketing Secrets (THAT WORK) to Grow Sales. The primary focus of this book is to generate marketing ideas that are used to help business owners grow sales. 

9.     Action … The original definition of the success is to take action. When business owners get clear on their intelligent self-interest, it become much easier to take action… and it is all about taking action. That is what the Business Mastery Advisory Board is all about, holding business owners accountable to take the correct action to achieve their goals.

How many of these behaviors have you implemented in your business?