The B2B Revenue Executive Experience
The B2B Revenue Executive Experience

Episode · 1 year ago

Finding Meaning: Significance vs. Success w/ Aaron Walker


Most people try to find success in life...


Good careers. Money. Respect.


But how many of us try to be significant? 


In this episode, I speak with Aaron Walker, Professional Life & Business Coach, Mastermind Group Facilitator, Coach and Trusted Advisor at View From The Top


We discuss:


- Why Aaron started seeking significance over success


- How to find significance


- Why mastermind groups work


Check out these resources we mentioned during the podcast:


- The Mastermind Playbook


- Iron Sharpens Iron Mastermind Experience


This post includes highlights of our podcast interview with Aaron Walker, Professional Life & Business Coach, Mastermind Group Facilitator, Coach and Trusted Advisor at View From The Top


For the entire interview, you can listen to The B2B Revenue Executive Experience. If you don’t use Apple Podcasts, we suggest this link.

I mean we were created to be in community. We're not created to be an oscillation, because oscillations is the enemy to excellence. You're listening to the BDB revenue executive experience, a podcast dedicated to helping executives train their sales and marketing teams to optimize growth. Whether you're looking for techniques and strategies, were tools and resources, you've come to the right place. Let's accelerate your growth in three, two, one. Welcome everyone in the BB revenue executive experience. I'm your host, Chad Sanderson. Today we're talking about how to live a life of success perhaps, more importantly, significance. What does that mean to everyone that's out there? was a mean to live a life of significance and today, when we all look around in the world's a little unpredictable, to say the least. Two norms are changing. It's difficult at times to stay focused and engaged in realizing the best version of ourselves. So to help us, we have with us are Walker, founder of view from the top, and iron sharpens iron, mastermind group, also creator of the mastermind playbook, who is a successful and often sought after business coach, life advisor and trusted advisor to businesses are. Thank you so much for taking time and welcome to the show, ch and thanks for having me own today. Yeah, I got to say you probably have. Of the guests I've talked to you in the last three months, you have the best voice for podcasting. I'm always pretty it's pretty southern, so don't go mike in any wise comments about my southern draw so, before we get into the topic of the day, we'd like to start with just the question so people get to know you a little bit better and curious. You know, we've all been spending more time at home and you probably, like me, were before this. We're traveling all of the time, but we get spend a lot more time at home and I'm curious to know if there's been something that this extra time at home has allowed you to re engage with or connect with, a hobby of passion, a pastime. What might that be and what is it that you find so rejuvenate? Well, that's a great question. You know, I've got everything, all my honey dues completed around the house. My Yard looks better now than it's ever looked and the house is spotless. And I said, I'm a little nervous if we don't get back out in public pretty soon I'm going to be remodeling the house. It really allowed me to slow down just a little bit because I'm, you know, pedal to the metal kind of guy. I'm going constantly and where we were at ball games and, you know, cheerleading activities for our grandkids and in this allowed me to kind of pause just for a moment and kind of re evaluate the things that I'm doing in quite honestly, as we get out and about now, there's some things that I'm not going to re engage in to the level that I was because I found that I was a little busier than I needed to be. So, yeah, got a lot of things caught up that needed my attention. Yeah, it's a great opportunity for clarity and and realigning with what is important in life. And so, with that kind of as a backdrop, help us understand when we when people say, you know, I want to live a life of success. In significance can manifest itself in a lot of different visions depending on the individual that you're talking to. But from your perspective, I'm curious the foundtional approach. What does it mean when you say live a life of success and significance? Well, let me go back and tell you a little story and how I even got to this point. So, eighteen years old I started my first business in at twenty seven I was able to retire. I sold out to a fortune five hundred and then I got fat and Lazy. My Wife said, Hey, you got to go start another company or go to work for somebody, and I did and bought another company and we spent the next ten years building it about four times. Society was so when I was forty years old, I was headed to the office on a Wednesday morning. It was August first two thousand and one, almost twenty years ago, and I ran over and killed the pedestrian on my way to the office, Chad, and it really rocked my world. And I don't know if you've ever been in a real traumatic experience or not, but things slow down, like in slow motion, and it's like I can't believe this is happening. My life is so good, you know, I'm building this company, got great wife, to beautiful children, living a beautiful house,...

...we have a vacation home. I all this stuff was so good and I'm like Bam. This came out of nowhere. I mean this was a left hook and I never saw it coming, and so it really slowed me down and it really made me think about things, and I won't take you through all the details around there, but I couldn't handle the stress. I sold the company and it was tough working through that, needless to say. I mean, you don't kill somebody in an automobile accident and just get over it all right, got to really work through it. So God kind of gave me the grace to deal with that over the next five years. I didn't work for five years and during that time I started thinking about that. I thought what's important in my life and what if it had been me that day, like what if I had gotten killed that day? And I started thinking about that and it kind of weake me out a little bit. I was like, oh my gosh, and I started thinking about what my legacy would have been. In my legacy would have been up until that point, poor kid from Nashville, Tennessee, makes enough money to retire at age twenty seven and nobody cares, right, and I started thinking that's time. What I want my legacy to be. I want my life to reflect on others and to help them and to be an encourage or and ED. If I want Chad's life to be better as a result of having known me. That's what I wanted my legacy to be and I thought it's not that up until this point what I had done was having a measurable amount of success financially, but the component that was missing was a significance piece. Like you know, it was all about another business, another home, faster car, all these things, and I don't want to lead people down a path to those things are not important. They are, but I love to make money and I love to grow businesses and all these kind of things. But why not, simultaneous sleep figure out how we can be significant in the lives of other people so that when we do pass away, our legacy is something other than just they were a successful person. I think that's an amazingly important point, especially in any day it would be, but especially now with what's going on in the world, the impact that we have on others. You know, it's I always joke when I slide into the end, I don't want to think about you know, hey, how successful was my business? I'm not going to think about. You know how many motorcycles that I have. I'm going to think about the stories, the people, the impacts, the things where we shared those truly raw moments and had a connection. Now there's a word that you I've heard you use, intentionally right, intentionally having significance, and that's to me sounds like a mindset and a focus. Most of us, you know, can get a point where we just kind of goes through life right like we just we're doing what we think we're doing, kind of like you're doing pre event that you explained to us. So how do you do it with more intention? And then is there a way to know that it's work, that you're actually being successful with it? Yeah, I started thinking through that and even wrote a little list out of things in my life that I considered successful. I started thinking about the amount of money you make, the place you live, you know, the differences that you're making in your personal individual family, and I started thinking about success. You know, I'll started thinking about quite honestly, most success you're focused on yourself in in significance. You're really focused on others, and so I started thinking about how I could deliver a significant life to other people, like my wife and we just celebrated our forty wedding anniversary and I had graduations. I thank you, thank you. I have two children, thirty seven and thirty five, and then we have five grandchildren and I started thinking, what is the legacy going to be with my wife and with my children, with my grandchildren, and how can I be significant in their life and how can I really focus on the things that are moving the needle for other people, not necessarily for my benefit or from my greater gain, but for their's? And since I've been able to... this over the past twenty years, what's happened that I didn't really see coming is that were twice or three times more successful financially, but I'm having a huge impact, significantly in the lives of the team members that work for me or people that go to our church or people in our community or people that are in our mastermind groups. I'm really focused on edifying, encouraging and lifting them up in helping make connections for them, and I'm a big connector. I'm constantly making connections for people, saying Hey, Chad, you need to meet billy over here because he can help you with this problem or Susie, you need to meet Sally, and here's why. Because they can help you with that resource that you're needing. And then they get it and they go, oh my gosh, this is exactly what I needed. Well, when you bring the light all the time, when you're helping people all the time, when you're the encourager and you're the edifier, people want to be around you. was a result of them wanting to be around you. Now they want to fill that natural rescerprocity of hey, I want to help. Who can I connect big a tow how can I help encourage you and edify you? And then all of a sudden there's a lot more business going on as a result of this edification process and this being a giver and not a taker. And it's just a mindset Chad of how we need to look at life, because when I started thinking about it prior to the automobile accident, it was all about another business, you know, another fiftyzero dollars, a bigger vacation home and more cars and more things for and it was like I was so self consumed that I didn't have time to be the giver. I was always the taker in this unfortunately, it took an automobile accident for me to really realize that, and that's why I've gone on a quest today trying to help other people. Tell you, take this covid thing right now and slow down enough to really think about what you want in life and how you can be that encourager and that edifier and lifting other people up, being that giver, and you'll enjoy your life far greater than you would just focusing on yourself. Yeah, I can't agree more. I've learned. I learned that less in the hard way two thousand and fifteen, twenty years ago as well. Not, I don't think, as traumatic quay as you did, but there is a there is a sense of depth of relationship that comes from that purity of connection and clarity of of giving, of helping others. It's not it's not easy for everybody's not always easy, but it is there is a purity. That's the only word I can think of with the relationships I have with individuals where, over the course of my career or even as friends, we've had those types of relationships. are like hey, how can I be of service and and you know, we have a conversation, they have a problem. I happen to know somebody or I have a skill set that will help you solve that. And it's not at any point in my talking about financial rest procity. We're just hey, I want to help, and there's a there's a joy that comes from that. But I also find that a lot of people have to be in the right mindset, they have to be kind of grounded in order to truly give without expectation of return. Is that a fair kind of summary of the month? And if you do it for a return, they're going to sniff that out about it can't be for selfish motivations. It's got to be coming genuinely from your heart. It's got to be where you're really interested in the well being of those peers and colleagues and family members that are around you, because it doesn't take a bomb scientist to figure out if you're doing something, you know, for personal gain or edification or motivation. So, yeah, great point and so okay. So with that context, now let's talk about mastermind groups for our audience. What are they? What's the purpose where they come from? help us understand that a little bit more. Yeah, we can simplify by saying that it's your own nonbossed board of directors. And many times people will say, Hey, it's where this one mind and a collective other mind you. I'm like, okay, let's just keep it simple. What is it? These are people that care about you, that meet with you on a weekly basis, that want... to have your best interest at heart, that hold you accountable, that give you feedback and encouragement and advice. Years Ago I was at the curb center here in Nashville going to a concert in a friend of mine's, Dave Ramsey. Dave and I've been friends almost thirty years now. I was his second sponsor on his radio show. When he started, he was on one radio station here in Nashville and he enlisted me to be one of his sponsors and I did and I spent twenty one consecutive years sponsoring his show. And he invited me to join his mastermind group and I'm like, I don't even know what a mastermind group is. This is decade ago, and he said just come to my office, you know, Wednesday morning, seven o'clock. I'll show you the guys that introduce you to the guys that I've invited to be in the mastermind group and I think you'll enjoy it. Well, I didn't want to go, just to be honest with you. Day just such a hard charger and he is like all about authenticity, accountability and holding you accountable to what you say and I knew him for years and I knew what his reputation was about that. But I said I'll go, so I did and fell in love with it. And the reason I fell in love with it is because nobody in that group had a dog in the hunt. Nobody there had any business correlation with me outside of Dave David. I've done business together, but outside of that, these people were non biased and people that are non biased will tell you the truth because they don't have anything to gain or lose as a result of what they tell you. And so I would start going and I was very timid at first about sharing because I didn't know about the confidentiality and I didn't know if they would laugh at me because I didn't know the answer to this. But the more I got in there, the more I found out they didn't know any more than I did about and I'm like Hey, it gave me permission to be able to let that facade down, let my guard down and be transparent and vulnerable in front of ten guys that could really move the needle in my life. So we spent the next dozen years meeting every Wednesday morning for an hour and a half in this mastermind group. And when I retired ten years ago, when I turned fifty for the third time, my wife said I've retired more than the law allows, but I retired for the third time and Dave and Dan Miller. Dan Miller has forty eight days to the work you love, and Dan was a member in the group. And they said what are you going to do now and I said nothing. I'm going to move to the Caribbean and I'm going to hang out one little tiki huts down there and I'm not going to do anything in Dan Miller looked at me and he says the most selfish thing I've ever heard you say in my entire life. And I said what do you mean? I didn't work it since I was eight years old. And he said, well, what you're saying is I got enough for me you good luck to the rest of you. Your fifty years old old. You're going to ride off into the sunset. And I said that's not what I mean and he said no, you need to coach. Now I said I'm not coaching anybody, I'm like, I'm tired, and they said no, you need to coach. So I went on trade leaders up master and I went out to the sanctuary with Dan Miller and did innovate and I'll be honest, said I fell in love with the coaching practice and I started coaching a couple of guys and quickly found out that I couldn't scale coaching and so I started doing podcast interviews promoting our business and it just blew up. And so here we are today with nineteen mastermind groups where in nine different countries and people are coming to us saying, Hey, I want my life to be better, I want to have this accountability, I want to be able to move the needle, I want people asking me the tough questions, and so now we meet virtually ten people in a group and we are taking people's lives to the next level. So it's simply is this. It's those board of directors that care about you, that can help you, that can encourage you, can hold you accountable, give you resources and take your life to the next level and we're just having immense success with these groups. And so is is this your version of the mastermind approach? Her? Is this one that is is it tied to something that you say were prejected? No, now we created everything that we've got and that's where the mastermind playbook came in. People started...

...calling me from around the world that were thought leaders and they were saying nobody has ever scaled mastermind groups. How are you scaling mastermind groups? And I said, well, it's a process. We've developed the systems and the processes. We've developed a mission, vision and values and everything that we do has a rhyme or reason. And they said, would you coach me? And I said now, I don't want to coach you to do that because it would take too much time. And they said now we really want you to coach us, and so I just threw out a number to run them off, and they said, where do we send the money? So I did that a number of times and then my daughter is the coo of our company and she walked in my office one day she said, Dad, there's great value in masterminds. I mean we were created to be in community. We're not created to be in isolation, because isolation is the enemy. T excellents, and if we really want to take our lives to the next level, we've got to get people around us, and you've done that masterfully. Why don't you create a playbook? Why don't you train and teach other people to do what you've done? And so I put her off for several weeks, as I don't want to do that's going to take a lot of work to do that. So anyway, she taught me into it. So I went and hired a product developer, we hired copywriters and videographers and we got our whole team together and we started going through step by one, step by two. We all the way through the process. A doze everything about Master Min Groos. Even if you've never heard of a master mind, you could take this playbook and it really helps you scale what you're trying to do. Because no offense anyone. You don't be offended by what I'm about to say, but because I'm a coach to I coach people, but coaching is not a business. Coaching is a job. You've got a high paying job and one day you're going to turn the light out and you're going to lock the door and you're going to walk away and there's going to be no asset there to sell and you're going to have of exchange your time for a great amount of money. But there's that's not a business right. And so I said I don't want to do that. I want to build something, because I've built fourteen businesses and I've always had an asset there to sell and I said I don't want to just walk away, turn out the light one day and there's nothing here to sell. So we started doing the mastermind groups. Well, today I can leave and go on vacation, which I just got back from a two week vacation celebrating our forty anniversary. We had new applicants and I had more money than when I left because the groups never missed a beat. I teach you how to enlist facilitators so that you can do revenue share with them, and then you can go away and you've set the framework up, the themes, the books, the questions, the way you run the meetings, and it's more like a franchise in these people are absolutely sold out. We've had people meeting five and six years in the same group and so now we've got recurring revenue that's very predictable, that you can build a business around. And now we're scaling that and we're about to launch our second division with fifteen more groups in that division. And I've just created the framework, and that's why we created the mastermind playbook to help other people that are podcast host and coaches and thought leaders say, Hey, I could have two or three groups and I could generate sixty two, three, hundredzero dollars a year with the minimal amount of involvement weekly from myself. So a lot of people you know we've developed a seven figure business and it's a primary focus and other people are starting to do that as well. And so when you think about these groups, let's say, let's say somebody wants to start one of these, are these groups that get together, give us a little bit more to each other. Groups here together once a month, once a week. This is what they tackled. Is a great question. You can tailor this every how you want. We've scheduled it and set it up to meet weekly because, Chad, I don't know about you, but a lot of life happens in a month. If I go a month without talking to a trusted advisor, I've probably already solved the problem and I've moved on to the next thing. In the way technology is today, it disallows us for putting all things too long, so we've got to deal with it pretty much immediately. So for twenty one years, every week I've been in a weekly mastermind group and I...

...attribute the vast amount of my success to this group, because the isolation, as I said earlier, is our enemy and if we really want to be the best, we need other perspectives. You can't think of things but one way and when you get other perspectives around you, it's like I didn't even know to know that. I didn't even know you could do it that way, or I didn't even know you could see it that way. Jeff Hoffman, the guy that started priceline, I saw him at a conference and he was talking about being in masterminds and the value of it. He was talking about reading things that don't have any relevancy whatsoever to the things that you're interested in, and I said the reason is it because it gives you a different perspective. Absolutely right, one hundred percent, that there's so many oppertution tunities out there before us, but we don't even know they exist without this level of involvement in perspective from other people. So for me, I can't get enough of it. I'm actually in seven groups a week, every week, and have been now for six years and so and then I'm involved in another group outside of that. I just joined another group personally that's going to help me with JV deals, and so it's a specific mastermind, but the ones that we have are personal, professional and spiritual in nature. I want to cover every area of your life because for me, I came home with a pocket full of money to a house full of strangers years ago and I'm like, yeah, I may have a lot of money, but I don't even know my kids like I should. And there's so many people today that are doing that. I want to hold people accountable for really investing in their family. I'm Christian by faith and so I think God has really given us a family. That is our first priority, but most of the times we alter them, we offer them at the altar of money. It's like I need to make more money, I need to make more money, and then you come home one day and you don't know your kids. Somebody else is taking him to the Ballpark and piano recitals and you're missing these things. You're traveling all over the world. You don't even know your kids. Listen, you only get one go through with those kids. I can start more businesses, I can make more money, I can start other companies. It doesn't have a memory. Your kids do, and I want to be sure that you're not going to miss that, because when they get their driver's license, for all practical purposes they are gone. We have sixteen short years to really breathe into those kids. Now my kids are thirty seven and thirty five and we have great relationships. We work together, but if I hadn't invested the time, they would have went on their married way and I wouldn't have had the relationship that I've been able to foster today because of it. That's what these mastermind groups do. They hold your feet to the fire and they help you really understand what's important in life, and I think that's an invaluable ass and people have be willing to be receptive. Right, if people are going to be completely unbiased and you subject yourself to the scrutiny of someone else, yeah, and I'm not willing to do that, then you're going to go off on a tangent and I look at masterminds like guard rails. They keep me in the center of the road and when I swerve one way or the other. If they don't know me well, they can't hold me accountable. They don't know the way I do life, they don't know the way I think, they don't know what's important to me. So who are you asking advice from if you're not in a group every single week with people that you trust, that are non biased? You know, I'm just telling you, ma'am. It opens so many doors. Procrastination is our biggest enemy and we do things like Brian Moran's twelveweek year. Every single day we're doing these tasks to accomplish our goal, and I do exercises to help people really get clarity and really help understand what is it that you even want? I wrote a document years ago called what do I want? Most people Chad don't even know what they want in life. They just want bigger, better, shiny or faster, and then when they catch it, it's like the dog that caught the car and that to know what to do with it. But they don't even know why they want it. A lot of people said, I want to make five hundred thousand dollars a year. What would you do with five hundred thousand dollars a year if you had it, and how healthy would that be? For I'm not saying you shouldn't. I like to make a lot of money too. I don't want money to be the only motivator, though.

I don't want money to be my God. I want money to be a tool that I'm using to live the life that I've designed, and we help people in these mastermind groups really define what it is that you even want in your life. I asked this question all the time. If, geographically speaking and financially speaking, there were no limitations, what would you do to Bor nine out of ten people can't answer that question because we don't slow down long enough to think about we only get one go through. We don't this is not a trial run. This is our real life. We're living it. We don't get another opportunity to live here, carnally speaking, on earth again. I want to live it to the maximum. I want to live it the best way I can. I want to maximize everything I do. But if you don't give time to think about how you want to live your life. You'll get to the end. You've lived it reactively and not proactively and you have huge regrets. And I'll just be honest, I don't want to lay on that bed when I'm about to die and go I have a lot of regrets. You don't want to do that. I know your audience done neither. Yeah, I one hundred percent. I'm with you. I'm with you, all right. So let's Change Direction here a little bit. We asked all of our guests to stand questions at the end of each interview. The first is simply, as a revenue executive, as a business owner, that makes you a prospect for other salespeople who are think they have something that may be able to help you. I'm always curious to understand when somebody doesn't have a trusted referral into you, what works for you and somebody's trying to capture your attention and earn the right to some time on your calendar. Yeah, you know, and I read these templates, these emails that are just standard. You know, everything that's customized and personalized to me individually, I'll read it, but when it's just a templing is for the masses. I hit delete. The other thing if they want something for me. I got seth golden to endorse my book and people go, how did you get him to do that? Well, I ask why? How did you ask? And I've even sent it to a few people. He's busy, right, that guy's busy. He don't have time to read a dissertation, you know. You Send me a biography and I'm like, I don't have time to read this. So I said, Seth, you're the best. I love everything you do. These are the bullet points. I have five bullet pointing at the end. If you can help me out, appreciate it. And here's the big thing. If you say no, totally acceptable. I'm giving you permission to say no. Well, now you wants to do it even more because I give an him permission to say it's a summary, it's very I can read it in fifteen seconds, and so to get an end to me, customize it, make it personal, make it short. I'm interested. Accident. All right. Last question. We call it our acceleration in sight. For one thing, you could tell professional people one piece of advice you could give them that you believe it help them hit their targets or exceed them. What would it be and why? I'm a very consistent person and I've got a lot of grid, determination and perseverance. Most people don't have the wherewithal to stay with something long enough to build up a consensus or to build up a critical mass, and so for me I really focus on doing it exactly the way I said I was going to do it consistently every single day, same way with podcast interviews or marketing traategies that I do. But people get fatigued too fast and I would just say you need to stay with it a bit longer. Awesome, awesome, Aaron. For listeners interested in talking more about these topics, were learning more about masterminding what you're doing, where would you re dually like us to send them? Yeah, go to view from the topcom and I'm easy to find. If you want to start your own mastermind group and you really interested in that program the mastermind playbookcom excellent. All right, I can't thank you enough for taking time to be on the show. It's been an absolute pleasure. Thanks all I'd said. I enjoy anybuddy. All right, everybody that does of this episode, you know, the drill be to be read exactcom share with friends, family co workers. Like what you here, leave as serve you on itunes and until next time. We had valuce something associates with you all nothing but the greatest success. You've been listening to the BB revenue executive experience. To ensure that you...

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