The very first thing you notice when you see Mark Eaton is his height. At 7’4” that’s to be expected. (That’s not a typo.)
His career in the NBA is well-known: NBA All-Star, leading the league in blocked shots in four seasons, a five-time member on the NBA all-defensive team. He has two records including the most blocked shots in one season (456) and career average blocked shots (3.5).
His career continues as a motivational speaker, entrepreneur, and now, author.
His book, The Four Commitments of a Winning Team, is a blend between his intriguing personal story and his principles for teambuilding. Even if you don’t follow professional basketball, I am certain you will enjoy it.
In our interview, you will learn:
- What Wilt Chamberlin told him in five minutes that changed everything
- Why he dreaded his height for much of his life
- How an auto mechanic who wasn’t interested in basketball became an NBA All-Star
- How the never-ending persistence of a coach changed the course of his career
- What a winning team looks like
- Why teamwork is misunderstood
The Four Commitments of a Winning Team
Commitment #1: Know your job.
Commitment #2: Do what you’re asked to do.
Commitment #3: Make people look good.
Commitment #4: Protect others.
86% of the population wishes they weren’t at their job.
That’s a startling statistic shared by Kary Oberbrunner. Kary is an author, speaker, and coach who left his day job to pursue his dream job several years ago. His personal story is compelling, overcoming severe stuttering, depression, and self-injury to becoming a community and business leader.
I recently spoke with him about his work and particularly about his book, Day Job to Dream Job: Practical Steps For Turning Your Passion Into A Full-Time Gig.
In our video interview, we talk about:
What it takes to pursue your life with purpose and meaning.
Kary calls people who pursue this “dream jobbers” and says only 14% of people are truly excited about their jobs.
Clarity. It starts with clarity. And with that clarity comes action.
The importance of surrounding yourself with the right people.
My friend Don Hutson has a career in speaking, management, and sales that spans time, geography, and industry. His client list includes over half of the Fortunate 500. He’s the CEO of U.S. Learning and has appeared on numerous national television programs. He previously served as the President of the National Speakers Association.
He has authored or co-authored fourteen books. Two of them The One Minute Entrepreneur and The One Minute Negotiator have been Wall Street Journal and New York Times bestsellers.
Given this extensive background, I wanted to talk with Don about two subjects: sales and communication.
In this first video interview, I talk to Don about sales.
What’s In and Out
He shares that closing is out while gaining commitment is in. Overcoming objections is also out replaced by dealing with concerns. Even listening is upgraded from a passive activity to power listening, requiring action.
The Importance of Trust
When I was growing up, I spent many weekends camping with my Boy Scout Troop in pursuit of my Eagle Scout badge. One thing I remember about those trips was the campfires and the stories we told. From the scary to the hilarious, those stories created an environment as we entertained each other. No devices, no distractions, just stories.
We may live in a different time, but the power of story remains an important part of memory, of persuasion, and of leadership.
A few months ago, we spotlighted Procter & Gamble executive Paul Smith, who is now a speaker and trainer on storytelling techniques. His latest book, Sell with a Story: How to Capture Attention, Build Trust, and Close the Sale is a powerful reminder of the power of story.
After our written interview, I met with him in person to continue our conversation.
We discuss the 3 elements of a great story:
3 Lessons from the Man in Black
You don’t have to be from Nashville to appreciate country music or its rich history—and you certainly don’t have to be from there to understand the impact of the Man in Black on music and American culture.
Of the many things that I learned in studying the life of Johnny Cash, I want to share three that had an impact on me well beyond his music:
1. Pursue your dream.
When he was about four years old, he heard a song on a Victrola. Immediately, he knew that singing on the radio was his goal. Nothing could stop his determination to make that dream a reality.
Lesson: Make sure your dream is big enough to inspire you through difficulties.
He was the master of style. Almost always appearing in black, he communicated a style and a message with consistency and power. Everything about him from his voice, his music, his personality and his dress communicated a unique brand.
Lesson: Imitating others may help you get started, but real power comes from cultivating your own unique giftedness.
3. Allow your values to guide your path.