“You past doesn’t define you. In fact, it can inspire you.”Joe Paranteau, Billion Dollar Sales Secrets
I am Ojibwe / Métis
I am the first in my family to grow up outside an Indian reservation and am a proud member of the Little Shell Tribe of Chippewa Indians of Montana. European settlers called us Ojibwe or Chippewa, but we call ourselves Anishinaabeg, original people.
No one immediately sees that the path I’ve been on is different, with a unique language and culture almost entirely lost. My father was ashamed of his skin, and his brother and sisters were forced to assimilate at Indian boarding schools. We are known as Métis in Canada due to our French ancestry. It’s why my last name is also unique.
I’m breaking a cycle of shame, poverty, and ignorance for myself and my family. I get energy when I can help others break through to new thinking.
I started Selling When I was 8
I grew up poor, and my parents divorced when I was young. We used to have our power shut off and often didn’t have enough food. New clothes for us were hand-me-downs or something new from the Goodwill store. I envied those who had more.
I used to go door-to-door selling painted rocks with my brother and sister. We’d use the money to buy food we wanted to eat, like Captain Crunch cereal! During this time, the hustler in me was born. Who could resist this cute kid?
In college, I had to sell to stay fed. I hustled as a stockbroker’s assistant, cold calling everyone in the phone book (yes, in the days of phonebooks and rotary dial phones). I received money for a qualified lead and learned how to build rapport with strangers. I also worked at a phone bank soliciting donations for charities and even managed a Blockbuster video! These early experiences taught me:
A sale solves a multitude of problems
Introspection will strengthen your hustle
Poverty is a mental trap like quicksand
I served in the US Air Force.
Native Americans serve in the military at a higher proportion than any other demographic, contributing to every conflict since 1776. It’s part of our warrior culture to do and defend the ancestral land.
I spent eight years on active duty in the Air Force and another four years in the Active US Air Force Reserves. I lived and traveled worldwide, and these experiences have helped me connect with people (a helpful sales skill). Here are some of the things I learned in the military.
It’s easier to course correct a moving object.
Every person has value, skill, and inherent worth. It’s up to me to discover what makes them unique.
Serve your people, and they will serve you.
Attention to detail might save your life.
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I live in Texas with My wife, daughters, and a husky Dog
When I’m not selling or traveling the world speaking about selling, I can be found adverturing with my family. I enjoy hiking, deepsea fishing, traveling, being a foodie, and alpine skiing.
My Adopted Home is New Orleans
In late August 2005, Hurricane Katrina devasted the City of New Orleans and the Gulf coast. I had started a new job working with healthcare organizations. The position and people changed me forever. After five years of helping my customers rebuild, they asked me to join one of the city’s Mardi Gras krewe’s, a high honor.
I still ride today in the Krewe of Endymion. If you happen to be on the parade route in NOLA, say, “throw me something, mister.”
I Earned My MBA in 2021
Good things come to those who go out and make it happen! My MBA quest lasted for two decades and faced numerous obstacles. In 2000, I planned to attend Harvard Business School, but life shocked me and put my plans on hold.
Since I’ve been successfully selling in business for 30 years, people thought it wasn’t something I needed. I wanted it! I desired to dive deeper into business and round out my leadership acumen. I focused my studies on entrepreneurship and family business. Why? I already had started multiple businesses. My rich business experiences helped me innovate faster on the ideas I was learning. I wrote my book while studying (something I don’t recommend). I’m ready to bring my insights as I speak and help you and your company. Follow me on LinkedIn!
A Few of My Strengths Profiles
I love taking assessments to help identify and leverage the strengths and talents of the people I work with and my own.
Clifton Strengths by Gallup: Ideation – Futuristic – Strategic – Activator
High5 Test: Strategist – Self-Believer – Optimist – Storyteller – Winner
DISC: DI (Initiator)
Insights Discovery: Directing Motivator & Inspiring Motivator