You Gotta Be Hungry: Unleash Your Greatness With Les Brown

It was November 4, 2017 – a Saturday morning like none other, at least like no other Jamaica has ever seen. In a flash, the room at the Jamaica Conference Centre began to come alive, quickly filling up with hungry people.

Les Brown engages a hungry audience at the Jamaica Conference Centre November 4, 2017. Photo Credit: Involve Magazine

The anticipation on faces told a story of deep yearning and longing, probably even desperation. But nothing physical could satisfy that gaping void. It was a hunger that goes much deeper than the bottom of the stomach. After all, the weeks of obvious intense planning by a hard-working team could not afford to yield disappointment. Greatness like you’ve never seen before, was about to be unleashed.

Elegantly garbed in a powerful red long-sleeved top complimented by a flared, quietly-sexy black skirt, host Amita Persaud-Webb shouted exuberantly to the audience in waiting at 9:11 AM EDT, “Good morning and welcome to the Unleash Your Greatness Conference”. Moments later, co-host Oliver Mair joined in getting a room, which was full to capacity, even more euphoric about what was to come.

A pre-conference chat with some of the attendees revealed the expectations of many. They range from ‘killing the enemy within”, to “eliminating fear” to “getting inspiration to take action”.

Clearly, everyone was ’hungry’ to hear and see the main speaker, the legendary and highly sought-after, Les Brown. This, they had to wait for until the other scheduled speakers presented. But lest there was any doubt about the caliber and aptitude of the other speakers, they never hesitated to dispel any such myth through the demonstration of their mastery and competence. Delivering with gusto and sincerity, they rose above the obvious pressure of presenting on a platform with the man of the moment.

Les Brown and his son Patrick shares lens as they departed Jamaican soil at the Norman Manley Internation Aiport after the Unleash Your Greatness Conference at the Jamaica Conference Centre November 4, 2017. Photo Credit: Involve Magazine

Patrick Brown, son of Les Brown, was the first one to serve up the appetizer. He came on stage rapping much to the amusement of an audience in waiting. “Greatness is your heritage”, he posited. “program yourself for success”, “we all start from somewhere and nobody starts at the top”, he continued. He went on to share his experiences growing up in the shadow as ‘Les Brown’s son before poignantly ending with a poem entitled, “It’s Time”. It’s time to step into your greatness, he charged, to the applause and approving cheers of a gathering whose appetite has clearly been whet.

Next on was Paul Bryan who spoke of his experience thirty (30) years ago with Les Brown via his mom’s cassette tapes which she played incessantly. “You’ve gotta be hungry”, was the main message that stuck like a glue to Paul’s memory. This was to make the point of the importantance of feeding your children’s minds with positive messages from an early age. Against the backdrop of the fertilization process where from a possible four billion sperm, only one will fertilize an egg, “You are, by your mere presence, extra-ordinary”, Paul emphasized before segueing to his roadmap to greatness which went like this:

  1. Get pregnant (with an idea) and give yourself over to an idea that excites you;
  2. Create environments for your success;
  3. Establish partnerships;
  4. Develop yourself;
  5. When greatness calls, answer, ‘YES’ knowing you have everything it takes to succeed.

With an American accent, Jon Talarico emerged next, shouting what seems to be the catch line for all visitors to the Jamaican shores, “Wat a gwaan Jamaica?” to an already steaming gathering. He started out by saying his turning point came from hearing that he has greatness within from a Les Brown conference he attended years ago. Jon went on, sharing his irrefutable Laws of Greatness – all ten of them.

  1. The Law of responsibility;
  2. The Law of motion;
  3. The Law of goals and planning;
  4. The Law of conduct;
  5. The Law of value creation;
  6. The Law of reciprocity;
  7. The Law of being unique;
  8. The Law of infinite possibility;
  9. The Law of education;
  10. The Law of attitude.

Sheree Martin, in her down to earth presentation style, put forth the idea that everything in life stems from two emotions, love and fear. When we live from a place of love we can never fear. She continued, “Measure success on your own terms…nothing has meaning except the meaning that you give it…you are a co-creator, the universe is conspiring to give you what you want. Live in appreciation of everything and bless others who are living in abundance even if you are not there yet”. Sheree’s model for success is based on Experiences, Beliefs, Actions and Results.

Kevin Ingram, representing sponsor National Commercial Bank (NCB), shared the secret of how the wealthy unleash their greatness. “Let your money stay in the bank and borrow other people’s money, create a vision, define what you want to be; practice good habits, keep focused and stick to your plan”, he said.

Keeping it ‘positive’. International Gospel Recording Artiste shares lens with Les Brown after his riveting performance at teh Unleash Your Greatness Conference at teh Jamaica Conference Centre on Saturday November 4, 2017. Photo Credit: Involve Magazine

In keeping with the positively charged atmosphere, the internationally acclaimed Gospel Recording Artiste, Rondell Positive, took the platform just before the lunch break. As he belted out hits like ‘Overcomer’, fans sang along while being feted to a dance off by Patrick Brown, son of Les Brown, host Amita Persaud-Webb and the man of the hour, Les Brown.

Host Emprezz Golding causing the attendees to erupt in laughter at the Unleash Your Greatness Conference with Les Brown at the Jamaica Conference Centre November 4, 2017. Photo Credit: Involve Magazine

After lunch, there was a shift, a changing of the guard as it were. A new host had taken the platform. The vivacious media personality, Emprezz Golding with her infectious personality, stopped short of bringing the audience to tears through laughter. Her energy set the stage for what to come. Giving out prizes after prizes, she brought audience members on stage to get their moment of fame. Many just had to merely open their mouths and a prize would be theirs.

When Internet Income Jamaica and Pow Social’s Alicia Lyttle, graced the platform, it wasn’t to train participants how to make money online but to let them in about what she has been through. She shared her powerful story of being a two-time Cancer survivor who had to overcame several other odds to be where she is at now. She charged everyone to:

  1. Understand responsibility
  2. Shed your past
  3. Hit decline when the calls from the naysayers and ‘waste’ people come in

Duane Lue-Fung, in his usual debonair style which is known to sell ice to an Eskimo, asserted that we must have a strong ‘why’ in our quest for greatness. He charged the twelve hundred strong participants to:

  1. Read the biographies of successful people;
  2. Express gratitude for everything, everyday;
  3. Stay away from average, it is the biggest enemy to success;
  4. Be intentional about your thoughts as they create your reality.

UK based, Online Marketer Danny Walsh added his flavor to the diverse pool of speakers. “Conversations is the key to success”, he pointed out. He further went on to state that, “If you are fishing in the wrong pond, you won’t catch the big fish.

Standing tall and strong at age 72 Les Brown at the Unleash Your Greatness Conference at the Jamaica Conference Centre November 4, 2017. Photo Credit: Involve Magazine

Then it was time. The moment everyone waited for had arrived. Time for American motivational speaker, author, radio DJ, former television host, and former politician, Les Brown, to appear. The man of 72 years, appeared on stage to a standing ovation and cheers from a hungry crown. He invited everyone to be seated and for the next 1 hour and 40 minutes he held the attention of everyone. “Seated in this room is greatness and I’m honoured to be in your presence”, he started. Les went on to share his story of being labeled ‘educable mentally retarded’ while in grade school. His story is nothing short of resilience, telling the narrative of overcoming, through the help of his adopted mother and high school teacher – a tale he tells with pride.

As Zig Ziglar once said, “some people say motivation doesn’t last, neither is bathing. That’s why we recommend it daily”. A motivated and inspired audience was the result as was the objective of the conference. The stage has been set for the next event of this kind to take place because the motivation has to continue.

The Unleash Your Greatness Conference is the brainchild of Inspire Me Events, managed by Internet Income’s and Pow Social’s Alicia Lyttle, Lorette Lyttle and Andrew Reid, and Think Grow Lead’s Duane Lue-Fung and Paul Bryan.

 

 

029 – The Power of Starting Small to Live Big and Achieve the Things YOU Want in Life, with Betsy Pake

Betsy Pake is an award-winning business achiever, competitive weight lifter and life strategist who hosts the popular podcast The Art of Living Big. She’s the author of the best-selling book, Become A Nutrition Ninja and just released Start Small Live Big. Her mission is to help inspire others to thrive through change by Starting Small. She loves a good tailgate, the smell of the ocean and relaxing with a good book!

#PeakPerformers, Betsy shares her story on #TheEntrepYou today! @betsypake Click To Tweet

Show  Notes:

Betsy and I started things off on the lighter side. I asked her, if you could visit any planet, which one would you choose and why? She retorted, “I have a travel bug. I would visit planet Earth in many more ways than I already have.”

Here are some of the things we discussed:

  • What’s the one thing preventing people from living their goal?
  • How can we be clear about our vision?
  • How did you discover the philosophy of start small live big that you now live by?
  • What is the CHASE framework?
  • How can someone find more joy when their life isn’t where they want to be?
  • What do you want readers of Start Small Live Big to walk away with?

Main Take-Aways:

  • It doesn’t take much motivation to start small and have big results.
  • True success is inward – it brings joy and hapiness.
  • We can retrain our brains to bring us back to the source within ourselves.

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018 – How to Get and Stay Motivated, be Intentional, Train Your Mind for Success and WIN, with Nicole McLaren-Campbell

Nicole McLaren-Campbell is an Educator, Motivational Speaker, Author and Entrepreneur. She operates AIM Educational Services, providing college and graduate school placement services, SAT / ACT / SSAT and GRE prep, and tutoring in high school English, Math and Science.

#PeakPerformers, Nicole shares her inspirational journey on #TheEntrepYou today! Click To Tweet

Show  Notes:

Fun question…would you rather be able to see the future or change the past?

I guess maybe more I’d want to change the past because I have that compulsion but on the other hand I feel like even my failures and missteps have been very useful. I guess I would change the past because some things were just dumb. I would go back and fix the dumb stuff although you can find a lesson in everything. I wouldn’t go back to make it perfect though because there are some things that the struggles were worth in the end.

Give us a little into your background and how you developed this fire in your belly?

Some of it feels like my purpose in life, because of that I think it’s a gift to me from God and I appreciate that energy. I’ve been very blessed to be influenced and motivated by very key people at very key stages of my life. That has given me fire and energy and I’m a student of success. I’m ready about how successful people keep their energy up because energy is such an important part of winning.

Exercise, eating properly, getting up early, praying, reading books help me. I try as much as possible to stay away from things, people and activities that suck my energy.

I spend most of my time in pursuit of what I feel I was called to do, I get energy from that because I enjoy my job and the impact that I’m able to have. I enjoy most things about my life and that gives me energy to power through the things I don’t necessarily enjoy but they are part and parcel of what I’m trying to accomplish.

How important is it for us to wake up and intentional?

What could be more important? There is so much going on in the world. There is a lot of distraction, noise and so many things we could be doing. It is very easy to get busy being busy. If you’re not moving from a place of clarity about what the vision for yourself – aligning your values with that vision and making sure your goals are in alignment with your values and vision – then you can find yourself doing all sorts of things. You don’t know what to say no to, you don’t know what to say yes to, you just sort of going through the motions and you’re wondering why you feel dissatisfied and you’re not feeling a 100% of you.

You know that there is something in you but it’s not coming out because you’re not being intentional.  It is very important to move from that space of intention because that’s how, over time, we move forward with what we want to be doing as opposed to some other agenda that someone has put forward or equally as bad just “tek weh yuh get out of life” where everyday just come at you and you in reaction mode constantly.

With the best of intentions, sometimes we get distracted how do we maintain that positive mindset?

We have to build our vibes sometimes. We can’t just go with the way we feel. We have to realize that we can deliberately turn that around. Repeating affirmations and practicing gratitude is important. In my book, “Make it Count”, I talk about getting and staying motivated and that you have to take a very deliberate approach.

Every day I wake up, I pray first and imagine my day as to how it is going to go, thanking the Lord for things that haven’t even happened yet and to put yourself in that positive mindset.

The brain naturally tends to go the negative stuff because back in the day you had you focus on surviving. Our brain is still in survival mode and programmed to go to the negative. You have to take back control, don’t let your brain lead you. You have to lead from your gut and heart and tell your brain what the agenda is.

We have to understand that we are not powerless in this thing of mood or staying up on energy, it is something we can be deliberate about and affect our disposition. Some of it is genetic but a lot of it is within our control and we have to seek to control what we can. We shouldn’t worry about what isn’t within our control. If you are sucking my energy, you are getting a swerve. I don’t play game with that.

Your entrepreneurial journey?

I did my under-graduate studies at Princeton University and decided that I would volunteer as part of the Admissions School Chair (ASC). I was interviewing a young lady for Princeton who was and is powerful (she is doing great things in the world now). At the time she was a student really dreaming of going to Princeton, really doing outstanding work in terms of her studies and SATs and very powerful. I thought she was a great candidate but by the time the interview was finished I realized that she hadn’t quite competed in the way that I know she needed to in order to maximize her scholarship as it was competitive. She didn’t get in and when she didn’t, I went home to tell my boyfriend at the time (now husband, Jeffrey Campbell aka Agent Sasco) that I wish I could help people get into college. I didn’t know if it’s a job or anything. He said I should totally do it. I was worried about car payments, etc., and he encouraged me not to worry about it because he knew I was going to be successful.

I didn’t quit my job immediately, I got trained even while being at the Ministry of Education which was a great experience. I worked with Andrew Holness as his Senior Policy Analyst. He is now the Prime Minister of Jamaica. It was a priceless experience because he is one of the hardest workers I know with an energy level that is unreal. He taught me a lot and pushed me hard in that job. I got trained, and started going to local events around the industry.

I met another consultant who focused on boarding school placement, I wanted to do college placement and we just struck up a friendship and an alliance that exists to this day. I’ve been blessed to meet some key people at some key points in my life.

That’s how AIM started, a dream, a faith, a step, a very supportive boyfriend (now husband), family that supported me and believed in me. Yes, they are naysayers and that’s part of the story. They were people telling me about the industry, you’re a young girl, what are you going to come and do.  Here we are 7 years later and we are on fire.

It feels really good to help others to achieve their dream in the same way that others have helped me to achieve my dreams.

My business from a business point of view helps people which is exciting but from a non-business point of view there is also the responsibility to help people who cannot help themselves.

What are some of your successes?

Every year, I set my intention to exceed what I did the previous year. It is going to be my best year yet. Last year for example, we had a return on investment of 4700% and this is when we look at the average scholarship for 1 university. This year it is 5067%, that’s really exciting. Our average scholarship per year per college is US$38,000. Last year it was US$30,000.

I am a results person. I want to talk about value. I’m reading a lot of Warren Buffet and he says you don’t look at cost, you look at value. I’m very serious about where I invest my time and money. I love to return that investment to our students and their parents because this is a serious thing. Not only are the numbers telling us, but the types of universities that our students are getting into versus what the regular admissions rates look like for those schools. We are doing more online work more now than ever, we are seeing students from all over the Caribbean, all over the USA and in Canada in the same way we are working with students like we do right here in Kingston.

What inspired you to write, Make it Count: Tips on Unlocking You Vision in 2017 and Beyond?”

It was a Security Guard at Television Jamaica in Kingston. I was on the programme, “Smile Jamaica, it’s Morning Time”, talking about making the second half of 2016 count. When I was leaving the security guard said she really enjoyed my presentation and that she was really inspired. She wished I had a book so she could read to be inspired when she wanted to. It did occur to me to write a book but shoved it aside.

I was struggling to complete it although it is very short and digestible. I gave myself some external accountability by putting it on Instagram for pre-order the (it wasn’t finished). People started pre-ordering and I was forced to complete. I googled an App to self-publish. A publisher has contacted me and I have signed a publishing deal. I’ve already launched it in Paris and I’m going to launch it in New York and I’m doing an island wide tour. All of this is completely blowing my mind but you move in the direction of your calling and purpose, you don’t need to see the whole staircase as Martin Luther King said – you just need to see the first step and you will be frightened at how everything starts to come together.

The book is 37 pages dealing with anecdotes, stories from my life about different things that have been in my way. Getting really honest, different failures I’ve had and how I’ve overcome and learn powerful lessons from failures. It is overcoming fear, staying motivated and tuning in to your purpose and setting that vision for yourself which I find to be priceless. It is attacking that horrible thing called procrastination that sabotages so many of us.

 Main Take-Aways:

  • Focus your energy on your calling.

  • You must be intentional in order to move forward.

  • We are not powerless, we have the ability to affect our mood.

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014 – The Power of Using Your Story to Provide Inspiration and Have Great Success, with Greg Walker

Greg Walker is the only one of fifteen children to ever Graduate High School.  An expert on Leadership & Success, he became a Millionaire at a young age, owning three Franchises. Known as “The Big Dreamer,” he will inspire you to achieve all your Dreams or Visions.

#PeakPerformers, Greg shares his inspirational story on #TheEntrepYou today! Click To Tweet

Show  Notes:

Where is your favourite fun spot to go?

I love the movies

What was your experience as a child growing up?

My experience was not a great one, growing up with 15 children born to alcoholic and drug addicted parents. My mother actually stabbed me. I grew up with dysfunction. I have 14 siblings and I was the only one who graduated high school. I graduated 454 out of 455. The only reason I graduated was that my teacher changed my grades a month before graduation. She saw something in me that I did not see in myself.

How did your environment affect you mentally?

People hear me speak all over the world now and can’t believe that I was very shy. I didn’t speak till I was eleven years old because of what I saw in my life. Five years ago, I decided I was going to speak. I joined Toastmasters through my friend and mentor Les Brown. In six months, I spoke at the World Championship Convention in Las Vegas, Nevada. Now people are paying me up to $20,000 to peak. I speak with Les Brown.

I opened up hundreds of restaurants, I never had meeting with my employees because I was afraid to speak; I had to delegate. Now I speak to everyone.

What is the power of a story?

I did not know I why I was winning all these trophies in Toastmasters. I asked someone who believed in me why do people like me speaking and he said, “Greg, if you would just stand there, you would see that the other Toastmasters, they give speeches, you give a story and a message.” I had no idea what he meant. Les Brown taught me that speeches tell, stories sell.

How do you craft your story to impact the world?

The average speaker has between 2 and 5 speeches. You just craft it to where you want to go. My main story is “I am Possible”, the second one is called “No Excuses”, and the third one is called “I am not born to be average”. I craft it to whoever wants me to speak. It is an art form and once you learn how to do it, there are a lot of people who will pay you good money.

Les always taught me, there is enough to go around for a million people but you’ve got to have the story. Les always say, don’t let your speaking get in your way of the audience of what they need to hear. I don’t speak to impress, I speak to inspire.

How can we use stories to help sell products or services?

You’ve got to touch the heart. So many people sell their products instead of selling themselves. People buy into you, not your products. When you go buy a luxury car, they don’t tell you about the specifications, they tell you about the experience. When you tell your story, you have to get people to buy into you, not the product. I tell people that if you are good enough, the world will see you. If you are persistent, that will trump anything.

Do you have to go through what you’ve been through to have a story?

Everybody has a story. You don’t have to have a bad story, you can use other people’s story. I use other people’s story all the time. The idea is to think, how can I add value to that person’s life? What do they need to hear me say?

What does success means to you?

Waking up; When I wake up, I have the opportunity that somebody doesn’t have because they may be dying of Cancer. The Power of NOW…No Opportunity Wasted.

What piece of advice can you give for persons working towards success?

My roadmap for success is CPP – the choices I made got me in a different direction that my siblings did; the people I hung out with gave me a different direction; my persistence got me into a direction. Persistence trumps any college degree. I don’t have a college degree. You have find something that makes you jump out of bed in the mornings.

You’ve got to learn to use your pain. My pain made me a speaker; made me into a number 1 best seller. We all too big to dream small. Tell yourself that you are great; that you’re a millionaire, you just haven’t cashed the check yet. If you don’t take care of your daily responsibilities, you don’t have to worry about 3 months from today.

You don’t get the life you deserve, you get the life you work for. You get who you are and what you do. FEAR…You can either forget everything and run or face everything and rise.

Main Take-Aways:

  • Persistence trumps college degrees.
  • You don’t have to have a bad story, you can use other people’s story.
  • People buy into you, not your products

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Whose story has ad the most impact on your life? Do leave a comment below.

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