Don Yaeger is a nationally acclaimed inspirational speaker, longtime Associate Editor of Sports Illustrated and author of 24 books, eight of which have become New York Times Best-sellers.
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Secret — timesaving technique
We simply need to do the common things uncommonly well. Don’s success comes from his ability to delegate to his team of 18 employees around him.
Daily habit that contributes to success
Read something positive in the early morning “before the world gets into my head.” And that led to the creation of Don’s “Daily Dose of Greatness”.
Could have ruined your business — but now — an invaluable learning experience
Don tells the painful story of when a close family friend, who also served as the office manager of his company, stole over $300,000 from his business. Don and his family had to deal with the betrayal, unpaid expenses, taxes, etc. that she had not paid. A near crippling situation — but Don and his team persisted and made it through.
Most critical skill you think business owners need to master to be successful
You cannot lead people you don’t know.
Most influential lesson learned a mentor
“You will never outperform your inner circle. Do you want to know what your capacity for greatness is? Just look at the people who are around you — the people in your personal life and your professional life — because you will never outperform them.” — Coach John Wooden
Final Round — “Breaking Down the Recipe for Success”
What systems would you go back and put into place sooner?
Great teams are more focused on their culture than their product. Every great team should go through the process of creating a “culture document” and put the culture into practice throughout the company.
What one strategy or “recipe” would compound into big wins for business owners?
Great teams run the most efficient meetings, or “huddles”. They recognize that the habit of great meetings is a strategic advantage.
How to exceed expectations and add the most value?
If we create a culture of empathy — then our employees will know what is happening in each other’s lives — and care about each other. As a result, teamwork will improve and that flows to our customers.
What strategy would you recommend new business owners focus on to best ensure success?
Be a better storyteller — he or she who tells the best stories wins.
Don’s final advice
Don’t be stuck on finding mentors exclusively from within your industry. There are amazing lessons to learn from people who can offer you different perspectives that they learned outside your industry — but can be applied to move your business onward.
How best to connect with Don:
- Don’s latest book, The Two Most Important Days of Your Life, can be found here