218: Fall Down, Get Up, Be Indestructible With Robert Workman
In life (and in business), you will definitely experience a lot of failures and downfalls. According to Robert Workman, the key to success is learning to get up and become indestructible. In this episode, Robert talks about how he managed to lose five Ferraris in his lifetime. As a behavior change agent, he walks us through his process that he takes with his clients that help them recondition their mindset. He emphasizes the importance of filtering what we see and what you put in your mind. To learn more about Robert’s business approach, you can read his books, Hired Gun and Hired Gun II.
Fall Down, Get Up, Be Indestructible With Robert Workman
Welcome to this moment in time when you get to chill out, tune in, and extract wisdom that you can use to grow your business with your first thousand clients. Readers, do you want more publicity, leads and clients? I have something for you which you can get basically for free. It’s part of my new product launch. It covers 28 different methods to get no cost placements, publicity, attention, connections, and ultimately new clients.
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At 33 years old, after building a successful company, he lost everything. His ranch, his home, his cattle, his horses, cars, trucks, even his pet wolves along with his marriage of fourteen years. He was so broke that he watched as a gas station attendant cut up his credit card one night in the rain, but he was determined to get back on his horse and rebuild his life. He started a new company but he lost that too. Depressed, angry but still determined, he took a job selling. He didn’t stop selling until he was the top salesman in the company and made a fortune for himself and for his bosses but he was rewarded by being fired. The lessons he learned as he rebuilt his life again and again each time attaining higher achievements and on his path to becoming indestructible, and that’s what he did. Welcome, Robert Workman, to the show.
Mitch, thank you for having me. I’m enthused to be here. I’ve been looking forward to this.
I have too, Robert. You’re a unique individual. I speak to a lot of people over 200 interviews. While everyone is special, you are clearly one of the most interesting people I’ve spoken with. I do appreciate you for that. Let’s go back to the beginning here and maybe you can fill in some of the details I left out in your story. Let’s spend a little time talking about how you got to where you are now.
I can’t remember what movie it’s in or who says it but she says, “Strap in, everybody. It’s going to be a bumpy ride.” I think that’s Liz Taylor in Virginia Woolf. I’m not sure but that’s been the story of my life. Looking back, I would have it no other way. At one point, somebody got me to take the Myers-Briggs Test, out of curiosity. I always love self-testing. I’d sneak up to my grandfather’s attic and take aptitude tests and vocational preference tests that I found in the attic and stuff. I took the thing and it came out I was an ENTP. The ENTP is known as the debater. The synopsis for that personality is one exciting challenge after another and that’s been the story of my life. I’d get involved in something, build it up and the brakes get screeched on and you’ve got to jump ship and grab another monkey vine and swing to another tree and do the same thing again. Thanks for that description. You’re spot on.
That first debacle, I was not prepared for. After that, I got it in my mind that I was going to have to learn how to deal with these things. I remember I was out to dinner with a friend and she said, “How do you deal with that?” I was like, “What’s the alternative?” To make a long story short, but five times. I raised all the way to the top, made all the money I could and I have a bad habit. It’s a great habit that I love and will not change but it’s a bad habit. That is when I get to the top, I feel secure, I’ve been there for a few years and life is wonderful, I write a check for a car. In my life, I’ve owned six Ferraris. Five of them I don’t own anymore because I got them and I had to sell them. This one, I’m keeping.
What color is it?
It’s your classic red tan spider top-down F430. I named it after my mom so the license plate says Lois.High achievers have a healthy attitude. They'll take risks because they believe. Click To Tweet
I have a friend, his name is Michael McCafferty and his story is a little bit similar to yours, although he had one big win when he sold his company to Sage and he started buying Ferraris back then. He’s a senior and he still has his beloved Ferrari. You can’t pry it out of their hands. Once someone owns a Ferrari, it seems like they never want to own anything else.
I was a Ford guy all my life. If I was in my teens and that movie, Ford v Ferrari came out, I would have been jumping up and down to handsprings. One day my mentor, the late great Joe Charbonneau came blowing into my office. It’s one of those things where if there was a door on it, it would have knocked off the hinges, and he’s laughing and he’s got this ad in his hand. He sticks it on my bulletin board, turns to me and says, “Robert, that is your car. You need to have that car.” I looked at it and it was a Ferrari 308. This was about 1979 and I said, “Joe, don’t do that to me. I’m never going to have a car like that.” He says, “Never say never, Robert. That is your car.” He flew out of my office. Within five years, I had that car.
I use the car as a motivator in a different way. We had a sales organization selling semiconductors back many years ago. I brought in a young man, who I knew had incredible potential and on his first day at work, I drove him over to the BMW dealership. I didn’t say a word. We walked in and he goes, “I love this one here.” I said, “Buy it.” He goes, “What do you mean buy it?” I said, “Buy it. If you love it, buy it.” He goes, “I can’t afford this.” I said to him, “If you do your job, you will and you will probably be able to afford it quickly. Why don’t you go ahead?” I called the salesman over and said, “This young man wants to purchase that car.” My friend, Patrick was shell shocked but he sat down, signed all the documents, and the next day he picked up his new BMW.
It was one of the greatest motivators of his career many years later. The car is a great way to get somebody in gear if you will, and motivated. Let’s go back to your story because to hear each time you did achieve that higher state where you made that money where you bought that new Ferrari and you’re knocked back down. How did you become indestructible? What was the moment or the time when number one, you made the decision to do that? Number two, what is it that you did?
The moment I entered into that realm of reality of accepting the fact that I’ve got to do something because nobody else is going to do it for me. I’m not going to lose everything and be mediocre for the rest of my life. That’s not in me. From the years and years of work, training, and conditioning I had had from Joe, I had a bulletproof sense of self-concept, personal identity, personal value, and my ability to contribute. One of my best friends drove 60 miles out of town to my ranch to see me after the great debacle. We’re standing on the upper porch and one night, he said, “Bob, don’t worry about it. You’re $300,000 a year man.” This is in 1986. “You’ll get it all back.” That’s what I had learned from Joe. High achievers have a healthy attitude. They’ll take risks because they believe. I’ve got my health and attitude. If I lose everything, I’ll make it all back and that’s right where I was.
When he said those words, I knew right where I was. I was a ten percenter and 10% of our society believes that. I was in that situation where I took a risk. I did lose everything but I’ve got my health and attitude. I’ll make it all back. I walked across my living room. My living room was bigger than the condo I had to move into. I walked across to the bar, poured a drink, a good old bourbon and branch water, and put on a song and it was That’s Life by Frank Sinatra. I’ve been a puppet, a pauper, a pirate, a poet, a pawn, and a king. I’ve been up and down and over and out and I know one thing, every time I find myself flat on my face, I pick myself up and get back in the race. That’s life. I did and I started my own little direct mail advertising company, and that’s the one that we built up for three years. The postage doubled, debt and desert storm hit, ad revenues dropped 50% and my cost of business doubled. I had to close and we got to where we were secure with cashflow.
You know in advance if postal increases and I had prepared. Over three years, the four of us, we had ramped up our revenues and our account base to where I figured it would be tight. We could make that and then we progress from there but we got blindsided by Desert Storm, January 1991, and it killed everything. I’d say to people, “I’m not going to advertise now because I want to see what’s going to happen this war.” “What does a war 5,000 miles away have to do with you selling a desk to an office in Dallas, Texas?” “I know, but I’m going to wait.” I had to get a job.
I had a similar situation happen to me. I was an amateur real estate investor. I own three small apartment buildings in Boston, Massachusetts and I was a beginner. I was careful about how I did everything but I feel like I did a good job. I ended up with good properties. I had some problems as everybody does, but I solved them. The tax law changed and I said, “This is going to kill me. I better sell all my properties right now.” I ended up doing that, which in hindsight, wasn’t a terrible thing, because I made a lot of profit from that and I used that profit to build a software company but it was that jumping to conclusions that you talk about, that I relate to in your story. Why do you think people do that? Why do we as entrepreneurs? Is it nosebleed heights that get us a little scared and we have to back away? What do you think it is?
People don’t understand this, but we take in images at the rate of 46,140 images per minute. We are bombarded with information all day long. People don’t understand how much information they’re bombarded with or how to control it and their thinking in their mind based on what gets in there from all that from that bombardment. I do a lot of work with that and with reconditioning people’s thinking first. It’s the first thing I work on. As a matter of fact, when I start out with my little half-day workshop, I tell people, “We are where we are now because of two things.”
I started studying why people fail. Everybody wants to know why they were successful and you can find thousands of books on it. Find one on why people fail. I went into it and learned that many people are governed by conditioning that they’ve heard all their lives. They still have those tapes playing in the back of their mind where other people like you, myself and others somehow, I don’t think anybody came overtly to us and said, “You’re 18, 21 now. It’s okay to go where you’re not wanted.” We hear all the time, “Don’t go where you’re not wanted.” We hear that children should be seen not heard. “Don’t speak until spoken to. Don’t bite off more than you can chew. Don’t talk to strangers. Don’t trust strangers. Don’t take anyone at their word. Don’t love too hard or you might get hurt.” They’ve got those tapes playing in their mind.
Sixty percent of our population is held back into accepting mediocrity as excellence because they’re still living governed by all those tapes playing in the back of their heads. Where 13% of the people in our study have gotten over it and blown out of that so they know it’s okay to go where you’re not wanted. Imagine one of these people going into sales. You want me to go where I’m not wanted when all my life I’ve been told not to go where I’m not wanted.
You tell me to ask probing questions when I’ve been told all my life, “Don’t speak until spoken to. Don’t talk to strangers. How am I going to call on people?” They’re in a real quandary. Fortunately, a number of us got past that. That’s what I tried to help recondition people’s thinking so they know it’s okay to do things that they were told when they were six years old, wasn’t okay to do but now they’re 45 and they’re still doing them.
Robert, what would you say about the services that you provide are? Are you providing a sales training system? When you work with a company, are you working with the sales force? I know your entire world is about selling and your books are about selling. That’s what I was trying to figure out in the way you were describing what you do.
I normally end up working with people who have sales capacity, sales, and sales managers because that’s where a company puts all his priorities if they’re going to spend money to bring somebody in to improve performance. They want to improve it in the bottom line revenue and they’ll see that first. However, if I get the opportunity, one of the most rewarding experiences I had was working with a sales manager to do this exact same presentation to his salespeople. He sat back and he said, “Could you do this for my whole company?” I said, “You bet. I would die for the opportunity to do it for your whole company. I’ll give you the booklets for free if you open up your whole company for this message. You won’t believe what it will do for you.” The letter I got back from after that half-day workshop was hyperbolic. It was glowing.
I love to do that because I’m a behavior change agent. My goal is to help people understand themselves so they go out and do the things they know they should be doing day in and day out every day of their lives. That sounds simple. That’s a huge concept. Turning an aircraft carrier is a simple maneuver but it takes 3 miles to do it. We show people how to take back control of their minds, hearts, and their lives. To do that, we help people increase their personal value so they put more of who they are into what they do.
Readers, we are talking to the amazing Robert Workman. He is the author of two books, called Hired Gun and Hired Gun II and he is going to walk us through the process that he takes his own clients through. He calls himself a behavior change agent and he’s here to help change all of our behavior as well. Robert, get into it. Let’s get some change going on here. Tell me what you need me to do.
I’ll begin and chime in if you have any comments or you would like to add. We are where we are in our lives now because of two things, the thoughts that occupy our minds and the people we associate with. Let’s look first at the thoughts that occupy our minds. Let’s look at how the average American starts their day in our society. What’s the first thing they do when they get up? Turn on the TV set. What’s on the TV set? Alcohol, drugs, murder, rape, terrorism, theft, war, politics, farmers aren’t going to farm anymore, bankers aren’t banking anymore, stockbrokers are broke and you’re all going to hell in a handbasket and so are you at 46,140 images a minute.
What’s the next thing they do? Go downstairs, have breakfast and check something out before they leave for work. What do they do? They look at the newspaper in the old days or on the phone or on the internet for information. What information is in the newspaper or on the phones or the internet? It’s the same thing that goes on the TV set. Alcohol, drugs, murder, rape, terrorism, theft, war politics, farmers aren’t farming anymore because bankers aren’t banking, stockbrokers are broke and we’re all going to hell and so are you.We are where we are in our lives now because of two things, the thoughts that occupy our minds and the people we associate with. Click To Tweet
The next thing they do is they drive to work, which is cut down right now substantially. They drive to work and turn on the radio. What’s on the radio? The same things on TV, internet, social media, and newspaper. It’s all over the internet, TV, radio and newspapers. It’s the 24-hour news cycle and the culprits are ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox, MSNBC, CNN, New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, National Enquirer, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Reddit. It doesn’t matter. They’re all telling you the same information, the same stories with their spin. You’re picking up somebody else’s spin on a kernel of information that you would like to know and letting them influence your thinking about it.
One thing I reference is a great article that I stumbled upon. I was almost doing handsprings when I found this article. It is titled, In the Blink of an Eye it’s by Anne Trafton MIT News Office. It’s an MIT News report of an MIT clinical lab experiment where they determined we take in images at the rate of 1 in 13 milliseconds. For example, if I take a deck of cards, all the backsides are up and we take one, flip it over in the face-up, and put it in there and I shuffle past you. That’ll be slow motion compared to thirteen milliseconds. Not only will you see which card is face-up, but you can also tell me which card it is. It’s a little parlor trick I do in my workshops. Thirteen thousand in one second per image that math translates to 46,140 images a minute. We’re being bombarded by that by all these electronic print media. Science Daily did an article in 2017 that said, “Depression is on the rise in the United States. From 2005 to 2015, depression rose significantly, with the most rapid increases seen in young people.”
That’s why I like to work with young people because they’re the ones most subject to this electronic mainlining of garbage. The Berkeley Institute for the Future of Young Americans did a whole study on this called Anxiety Disorder in Millennials: Causes and Consequences. This is a little summary, “As the first generation raised on the internet and social media, Millennials are experiencing anxiety like no other generation.”
This is interesting, Robert. I want to acknowledge what you’re saying. You’re right about the amount of information we are bombarded with. The thing I want you to be clear about is we understand that we don’t perceive images every thirteen milliseconds, but we’re exposed. The brain has the potential to recognize without consciousness, an image in thirteen milliseconds. That’s what you’re saying, right?
It’s exactly right. It’s covered well. Not this math or this study because this study came out after the book was written but Malcolm Gladwell wrote Blink. In Blink, almost the entire subject of the entire book are multiple cases of people being able to look at something and in less than two seconds know exactly what’s going on. This is when myriad experts with reams of data and experimentation have analyzed the same subject for days and weeks and have been wrong. It’s called thin slicing. That’s one aspect of it. That’s where it comes from. We take images much we don’t even know what we’re taking it. Also, thirteen milliseconds is where the computers stopped being able to be functional. They started at 80, went down to 50, and got down to thirteen. At thirteen milliseconds, the computers could not compute faster if we’re able to pick up more information faster than that.
What’s the impact of this? You made the point, I get it. Where do we go from here?
Where we go from here is protecting ourselves. One last thing I want to add is I do a lot of studies based on Pew Research because they’re a credible research center. Pew Research put this study out that said, “Two-thirds of Americans get news on social media,” and they show a pie chart. Right under that is their other headline, “But most social media news consumers expect news there to be inaccurate.” Two-thirds of the nation go to social media for news and information. Fifty-seven percent of that 2/3s go there believing it’s going to be inaccurate.
It’s called garbage in, garbage out, the old computer term. If you’re putting garbage in your brain, the only thing is going to come out as garbage. We need to control our thinking because here’s how it works. Thoughts create feelings. Feeling is an emotion. Emotion is an energy inside of us that produces motion and the more motion we have, the more people we can help, and the better life we lead. It all comes back to the thoughts that occupy our minds.
We need to be consciously aware of what we’re allowing to come in and for us to consider and form our opinions and our thinking. I choose one hour a day to get depressed. I don’t look at social media news. The only thing I turn on in the morning for news is a business channel so I can see what the market is that day and what the trends are. Other than that, I turn it off. As soon as I get that snapshot, I turn it off. I don’t want that rattling around in my brain all day long when I’m trying to be positive, helpful, supportive, constructive, and help other people. You can’t do it if you’re depressed and they’re depressing us beyond belief. If you want to change your feeling of something, you have to change how you’re thinking.
If you want somebody else to feel something, you must be thinking of it first. Think of a young guy on a date. There’s a pretty girl sitting across the dinner table. He wants to impress her. He wants to create all kinds of emotional feelings inside of her. How does he do it? He’s thinking quickly and fast of what he can do and what he can say to impress this other person to create feelings and instill feelings in them. That’s what we do as salespeople. Thoughts create feelings. Feelings create emotion. Emotion is energy projecting outward to other people that they’re picking up at 46,000 images a minute. That’s why they know at 14 feet if they’re going to look at you and say hi or not. The more emotion you have, the more activity, the more people you work with, and the more people you help, the better life you make.
What did you mean before when you said that you allow yourself to be depressed for one hour?
At 9:00 PM, I watch the news. I’ll turn on local news. I’ll turn on some national news. I’ll go to YouTube and I’ll see all the YouTube videos available on that same subject, and I’ll pick the one that I’d like to watch. I am selective about what I put into my mind from the general mass media because their job is to sell ads. They don’t have any programs on any mass media unless they sell ads. Ad salespeople, my hat’s off to you. I love you to death but you’re supporting something to depress people.
Here’s how it works. You see the negative story online and right next to it, in the right-hand sidebar next to that story that agitates you, angers you, and makes you upset and depressed is something that is generated by artificial intelligence based on your browsing history, shopping habits, and buying history. “Look at that pair of crocodile boots. I’ve been looking around at those for six months. That would sure make me feel better than I do reading this story. I might go and buy that pair of boots. It makes me feel better.” It’s a basic principle of advertising.
I will tell you one thing that I did many years ago and to the surprise of many people in my life at the time, I stopped watching the news in the 1990s. I’m on the internet for a good part of the day. It’s undoubtedly there. I do see snippets coming and going but to sit down and watch a news show is something I haven’t done in many years. Truthfully, the reason is because I think of the human body as an energy system. When you talk about this moment of depression, as you will, to me, I think of it as a weakening.
What’s happening is that when I see things that I have no control over, it weakens my immune system and effectively weakens me. As a result, I choose not to be weakened and not to put myself in a position where I will voluntarily subject myself to harm my own immune system, particularly now with all that’s going on. I do that by staying away from the news. That’s my viewpoint. It’s personal and I don’t expect others to do the same thing but it’s how I look at it and that’s the philosophy I’ve lived under for a long time.
We have to protect ourselves. That’s what I say. I help people learn how to control their minds, their hearts, and therefore their lives because your heart is your belief system. When you’re watching these things, many of them are directed to making you feel bad about who you are. I’m sitting there watching and they’re telling me I should feel bad about myself. I feel good about who I am. I don’t want to have to endure that. The reason I do it from 9:00 to 10:00 is at least after that I’ve got an hour or two before I turn in each night to pick myself back up with a good movie, a sitcom, or something. I want to go to sleep with positive things rattling around inside of my brain in my alpha brainwave state and not negative things and not fires, filings, bombings, shootings, killings and bank frauds. I don’t want to think about that eight hours while I’m sleeping.
That gives us control of our minds and our hearts. We can open up to find out who we are as a human being and write our identity. You learn how to write your identity as a human being. I make my trite little statements like the football coach at the Super Bowl saying, “You guys go out there and win this. Nobody can ever take that away from you.” When you write down your identity and who you are, what you believe in, why and from where nobody can ever take that away from you. When you need to reach down, you know you have something of substance to reach down to. Many people, unfortunately, have to reach down and there’s nothing there. That’s only because they never worked on. They don’t know.
I get it. How do you do that?If you're putting garbage in your brain, the only thing that is going to come out is garbage. We need to control our thinking. Click To Tweet
In my workshops, we have about four pages of positive words to help people learn how to write their identity. I tell people, “I would like you to write a chapter about you. This is for you, about you, by you, and for your eyes only, so don’t hold back.” Don’t think, “I don’t want to write that. What if somebody else sees it?” Don’t do that. Eat it or burn it afterward. I don’t care. Write down who you are. Write down the wonderful person you are because of all the people in the world like you, you are the only one. Write down who that unique person is and get a handle on that and that will tell you how you’re going to be able to deal with anything that comes up good, bad or indifferent. You can essay that out and I’d like you to write a chapter but right now, let’s write your elevator pitch. You’ve got an elevator pitch for your company, your product, in sales, and everything. Do you ever write one for you? That’s the single most important thing you can do. All those other things are details.
I like that. Write an elevator pitch for yourself. Take us through that. What would that look like? If I was to sit down and do this exercise now and it’s personal, walk me through the process. What would I start with?
For example, I don’t have the benefit of handing out my little handouts now to help people with this, but I can tell them how to do it. If you go Google and you google search the words ‘positive word lists,’ you’ll find 1,000 of them. What I want people to do is write a positive identity awareness statement. The first thing is three sheets of paper. The first sheet, list characteristics you believe that winners have. The way I say that is I condition their thinking. I frame it by saying, “Think of somebody you admire or 2 or 3 people you admire. Why do you admire them? A political figure, an athlete, somebody you know, a business owner why do you think they are a winner? It doesn’t matter to me who or what they are. It doesn’t matter anything about it. In your opinion, that person is a winner because they embody that characteristic or that attitude and you admire that in people so you might have that as part of yourself as well.”
On page two, choose words that describe you now. Write the words that describe who you are now. On the next page, choose other words that describe who you want to be. In my workshop, I hand out a booklet that has four pages of 132 words that are all positive words and there are columns. You go down, you see optimistic, “I presently wish to become persuasive. I wish to become more persuasive,” and you check that one off. You might only pick five words out of the whole 132. You might pick 50 but it’s giving you a framework of some terms to help stimulate your thinking so when you go in and start writing your 1, 2 or 3 statements, you’ve got a lot to draw from.
You know what you admire in other people is winning characteristics, you know what you have in you already is winning characteristics and you know what you’d like to be better at and as winning characteristics. You’re going to write about the winner, that is you. You’re going to have that and you can modify that. What I have people do is change their behavior in this little regard by my saying, “Writing is rewriting what you’ve already rewritten so we’re going to do this every day.”
Here’s how easy it is. It’s a hard thing at first. It’s going to be hard for us like learning how to do anything, swing a baseball bat, or ride a bike but once you do, it’s easy and smooth and you’ll be happy about it. Instead of keeping a to-do list every day of things to do, everybody has a to-do list, a have it to be to-do list. At the top, “Today, I’m going to be this person.” That person is going to do these things. I’ll give you an idea of how different this can be with the same human being.
Let’s say it’s Sunday. Why am I doing this exercise for this business guy on Sunday? Do it, “Now, I’m going to be spiritual, caring, good father, loving husband or wife, family-oriented, and so forth. I’m going to do these things around the house, in the garden, and with my kids.” Let’s say that person is a salesperson and now it’s Monday, “I’m a high-performance individual. I’m energetic. I’m action-oriented. I’m result-oriented. I get down to the bottom line. I do whatever it takes to get the job done and here’s what I’m going to do to do that.”
It focuses you on who you are and what you’re pulling out of yourself to address that day and this is your daily exercise. I like to do this in theme. Write a whole chapter. Know who you are because when you’re sitting in that 10,000 square foot home with nothing in it and no animals, cars, trucks, wolves, and no wife, you know what you’ve got. Also, you can go out into the marketplace with and have a pretty good idea that you’re going to be successful.
To recap, start out with a list of positive words and pick the ones that you resonate most with. This is going to be hard for some people because we’ve been conditioned not to think of ourselves with positive attributes. We’re always trying to “improve ourselves” and a lot of people believe that the only way to do that is to tear themselves down first. That’s going to be hard for some of us but the idea is you pick the words that you resonate most with or want to resonate most with then you write a chapter, at least a chapter about you using many of those positive words or all of them if you can. Have that handy and review it on a regular basis and every day, create your regular to-do list but you’re also creating a to-be list. Do I have it so far? Is that the basic process?
Yes, it is. I would have them write who they are first because that determines what you do.
You write who you are, who you’re going to be, and what you’re going to do.
You write down, “Now, I am this person.” Here’s my to-do list, which is all the things that a person is going to do.
To-do is going to come last and that way it will be a little bit more productive. I like it. What we got here is a simple straightforward formula that anybody can use to change their state. If you are feeling anything other than good about yourself, Robert gave us this tool that we can now use. I’m going to share this by the way with my family and my clients as well. It’s pretty brilliant. You, readers, can use this right now to change your state. Robert, that’s valuable and I want to make sure that you get the fact that we’re appreciative of you sharing that with us as readers. We’re now your students so thank you for sharing it with us.
We want to move on in the interview to the next section, which is for me to ask you a couple of questions about you. This is my favorite part of the interview because the answers are always different. The first question is more about, in a sense, your attributes as to your desires as to what you want to be and that’s why I call the space and time question. Who, in all of space and time, would you like to have one hour to enjoy a walk in the park, a quick lunch, or an intense conversation with?
I have given this a lot of thought over the years because at dinner parties, a lot of times it comes up, “Let’s go around the table and say, “If we’re able to select one person we could have at this dinner party, who would they be?” It’s always fun. You can back off. Here all these people at the party. Let’s have a conversation. It gets fun. I think about that a lot. I used to say, Theodore Roosevelt. In my Master’s thesis, I rediscovered it by going through old book-related stuff. It was a miniseries, a two-hour pilot, and a four-part miniseries on the life of Theodore Roosevelt. I’ve always admired Theodore Roosevelt, and I thought, “It would be Theodore Roosevelt. I know him. I wrote my Master’s thesis on him. Who would it be?”
I thought, “Mickey Spillane.” I’ve been there. I’ve done that. I met him and I spent 90 minutes with Mickey Spillane at lunch one-on-one. I learned more about successful writing in 90 minutes with Mickey Spillane than I did in six years of good college. No doubt. I would say and I hope this doesn’t sound trite but my dad. Since he’s passed away, I’ve learned so much about him that I can’t ask him about it. He pioneered all the deep sea thousand-foot-deep diving research for the Navy back in the ‘60s. They had a project called Sealab. They had divers live underwater at 200 feet and they rotated him out and got another crew down there. They did it for two weeks. They were saturated with helium-oxygen in their blood so they didn’t have to resurface.
They lived 200 feet of pressure and they had a habitat down there. He ran that. He did all the dive tables. He was the world’s top authority in decompression medicine. He won science awards over Jacques Cousteau for deep diving. A book came out called Sealab and it had great things I never knew about that project. Give me some advanced notes so I can write down all my questions. I’m thinking, “If I had one hour with Hawkeye because I want to know so much that I never got to learn from it.”
I like that you have a name for him, Hawkeye.When you write down your identity and who you are, what you believe in, why and from where, nobody can ever take that away from you. Click To Tweet
That was his nickname. He was captain of the Iowa track team and after he retired, he started signing his letters as Hawkeye.
It’s a great choice. I know there will be a moment in time sometime in the future where you two are reunited and it’s going to be a wonderful moment. Robert, we have the grand finale, the change the world question. It’s a big one. What is it that you’re doing or would like to do that truly has the potential to literally change the world?
I have to say that I’m doing it. I want to do it bigger to change more worlds. Back up two steps and think about it, if people did understand who they are and felt secure about themselves as human beings, how much more would they put into the roles they enter in life outside of themselves? Their role is a mate, a parent, doing the job, as a leader, and their contribution to the community. All those things improve when a person believes in themselves more. I’ve got news for every reader we’ve got. On a scale of 0 to 10 as a human being, every one of us was born a ten. The only reason anybody believes they’re less than ten as a human being is because somebody else told you are, and you believed them.
The keywords there, Robert is, and you believed them.
Somebody told you are and you believed them. God made you and God doesn’t make junk. Accept the fact you were born a ten. Reconditioning your thinking to become a ten and a believer in your mind and in yourself, you will accomplish incredible things.
Robert, you are a behavior change agent and I know that your gifts will affect many people. If people wanted to go to your website, what’s the best website to find you at?
Robert, you have two books out right now. One is called Hired Gun and Hired Gun II.
The first one I wrote years ago and it was a process of discovery of the fact that adversity is such a powerful agent in the sales occupation. The second book was detailing, “I’ve told you all this in the first book. Now, I’m going to show you how you can keep it from happening to you.” It’s the details in the second book so the subtitle of the second book is The Essential Guide for Top Salespeople. It tries to keep you from being fired for being too good or when you are fired for being too good to make you feel okay and get another job at your competitors or something. That’s the nature of that book.
The third one I’ve finished and start sending it off to the editors. The working title is simply You: Boss. It’s about migrating from sales into entrepreneurship because such a high percentage of entrepreneurs are people with sales backgrounds. I show the evolution of how to sell to the boss, meet the boss, learn from the boss, and work with the boss. It’s a different entity to work with an entrepreneur than anybody else. How to become the boss and how to be the boss.
Everyone you’re speaking to now is your exact target market. We’re all entrepreneurs running businesses, and doing our best every day to make a living particularly during these crazy times. I want to mention that you told me about a special free gift. I was surprised that you offered this one. Tell us what that is.
For any of your readers, I will be happy to provide them the entire eBook of Hired Gun II. I’d offer Hired Gun I but it doesn’t have an eBook. It was years ago. I have the eBook for Hired Gun II and I will give it to you so you can provide it to your readers. It’s not the first three chapters. It’s the whole book because if they’re going to be interested enough, I’d like to give them the whole message. What if they like Chapter 13? I’ll be glad to and who knows, maybe we’ll be back offering them a free eBook of You: Boss.
Robert, thank you so much for your time. Thank you for sharing your story and for helping us learn your process to be better at being human.
Thank you, Mitch. I appreciate it. I’ve enjoyed myself and I hope it’s been meaningful or helpful to some of your readers.
I’m sure it has, Robert. Thanks.
Resources Mentioned in This Episode:
- Robert Workman
- Michael McCafferty
- Hired Gun
- Hired Gun II
- In the Blink of an Eye – article
- Pew Research
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