Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight

Episode 11: Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight, with Stephen Woessner

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Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight. Gain insights and debunk myths. Explore the truth that success doesn’t happen overnight.

Stephen Woessner is the founder and CEO of Predictive ROI (PROI), a digital marketing agency, and the host of Onward Nation and Sell With Authority Podcasts.

Since the advent of the commercial Internet, Stephen has collected tens of thousands of data points that have given him the ability to identify what he calls the “8 Money Draining Mistakes” and the “8 Money Making Opportunities.” Darren Hardy, then-publisher of SUCCESS Magazine, interviewed Stephen to discuss how business owners can identify and fix their mistakes.

Stephen served in the United States Air Force, spent six years at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse as a full-time academic staff member and taught digital marketing classes to small business owners throughout the state including the prestigious School of Business at UW-Madison. He has owned five businesses, and is the author of three books, “The Small Business Owner’s Handbook to Search Engine Optimization”, “Increase Online Sales Through Viral Social Networking”, and “Profitable Podcasting.”

His digital marketing insights have been featured in,, The Washington Post, and Inc. Magazine.

Success doesn’t happen overnight; it is the result of consistent effort, resilience, and a commitment to learning and growth over time.

What you will learn about in this episode is that success doesn’t happen overnight:

  • What winning the Kentucky Derby and building a position of authority have in common
  • Why Stephen believes the latest derby win was not an overnight success — and why there’s no such thing
  • Success doesn’t happen overnight: How Stephen and Erik ended up at the derby in the first place, and what they learned from it
  • The impressive amount of strategy, analysis, and research that go into the probability odds for every single horse in the race,  underscoring the meticulous effort involved in acknowledging that success doesn’t happen overnight.
  • Why Stephen decided to place a bet on this year’s biggest underdog…that’s right, Rich Strike
  • What we as thought leaders can learn from this year’s Kentucky Derby winner, Richard Dawson — and why he entered the race in the first place



Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight: Full Episode Transcript


Welcome to the Sell with Authority podcast. I’m Stephen Woessner, CEO of Predictive ROI. My team and I created this podcast specifically for you. So, if you’re an agency owner, a business coach, or a strategic consultant and looking to grow a thriving, profitable business that can weather the constant change, that seems to be our world’s reality. Well, you’re in the right place if you want proven strategies for attracting a steady stream of well-prepared fit prospects into your sales pipeline. Yep. We’re going to cover that. Do you want to learn how to step away from the sea of competitors so you actually stand out and own the ground you’re standing on? Yeah. We’re going to cover that too. Do you want to future-proof your business so you can navigate the next challenges that come your way? Well, absolutely. We’re going to help you there as well. I promise you each episode of this podcast will contain valuable insights and tangible examples of best practices, not theory, from thought leaders, experts, and owners who have done exactly what you’re working hard to do.


So, I want you to think practical and tactical. Never any fluff. I also promise you that every strategy we discuss and tool we recommend will be shared in full transparency in each episode. So you can plant your flag of authority, claim your ground, and fill your sales pipeline with a steady stream of right-fit clients who never, ever, ever were made to feel like one of your prospects. Okay. So, today’s episode is going to be a little bit different, just like a few weeks ago, because it’s just you and me today. This is a solo cast. I don’t have a guest expert with me today because I want to spend some one-on-one time with you again, exploring this time. Pretty unique, I think a unique topic, just you and me. We are fresh off a win at the Kentucky Derby, which is why I decided to title this episode a win at the Kentucky Derby.


There were some great lessons learned and a lot of observations, and I want to share the entire story with you and really take you behind the curtain into why this story, I believe, was 40 years in the making.  and so we’ll talk about why we were there.  I’ll share all of that with you. The invitation we received was just this really cool thing with other agency owners. If you happen to be listening, Jane Pfeiffer, thank you again for your hospitality. The hospitality you and your husband showed us in our group there was off the charts. Amazing. And we are super, super grateful, my friend. So thank you again, Jane and Lee, for all of it. I mean, it was just phenomenal. So let me tell you the story, everyone, and why.


Listen to our podcast, How to Conquer Fear, with Stephen Woessner to learn more about how success doesn’t happen overnight.


Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight: Lessons in Perseverance, Business Strategy, and Triumph


First, let me connect this back to the why. Yes. It was 40 years in the making. Yes. Rich Strike, the name of the horse that won, was the second or had the second longest odds of any horse to ever win the Derby 80 to one. In fact, when the gates open, I’ll apologize in advance. I didn’t mean to cough in your ear. I’m still getting over a cold. So, anyway, it’s been a bit of a nuisance. So, 80 to one odds when the gates opened, and we were in last place through the first, probably maybe third or so of the Race. And then quickly gain some ground toward the, maybe the last half of the Race. And I’ll break all that down here in just a second or in a little bit.


Success doesn’t happen overnight. But why is this story such an incredible story, not just because of sport, but because of the business side of it too? It truly was four decades in the making. And so this clearly didn’t happen overnight. It seems like it did.  but it really didn’t happen overnight. There were decades and decades and decades of practice learning the industry, finding the right trainer, and then making the investment in the right horse. All of that culminated toward the end of the 40 years of making this happen. But it didn’t happen overnight. It sure looks like it was an overnight success because Rich Strike is a horse that seemingly came out of nowhere should an Evan even have been in the Race. And we’re going to break some of that down, too. But then, when quote-unquote, his number was called number 1, he stepped up and was ready for the challenge. He raced and ran a really great race, obviously winning the Derby.


It was not an overnight success. It was a long haul. It was practice after practice after practice, and really learning the industry, making the right moves, and then eventually making the right moves on the track. Okay? So we’re going to break all of that down because of the parallels to building a position of authority and working in the trenches over and over and over again and being super, super helpful to the niche, to the clients that you want to serve. And in that big Win, it might be a day or a decade in the making and closer to a decade, in this case, four decades in the making. And then, when it happens, it feels like an overnight success. And, of course, it wasn’t because there is no such thing. So that’s why I want to take you behind the curtain here and share all the particulars about this story. I hope it will give you confidence in knowing that, yes, the road is long.


Success doesn’t happen overnight. Yes, there are going to be challenges along the way. Yes, there will be some extremes, maybe difficulties and obstacles, and so forth that you’ll have to overcome. Just like Eric, the trainer, Eric Reed, the trainer of Rich Strike, in 016, he actually thought about quitting racing. Why? Because his barn burned down. I mean, he lost his entire facility. And, in 016, he almost quit, and he almost got out of the business altogether. Six years later, his horse wins the Derby. So, going to break all of that down. And My hope is, is that, is that this story, this long shot story, is going to give you some confidence to continue pushing through and to continue serving your clients and continuing to plant your flag of authority and sharing your smarts and insights, and doing that consistently, even if you feel like nobody is listening or nobody is reading, or nobody is consuming the content, which is of course not the case.


Listen to our podcast, How to Conquer Fear, with Stephen Woessner to learn more about how success doesn’t happen overnight.


Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight: Invitation to the Kentucky Derby


But I hope this story will give you the confidence to realize that it’s not an overnight success. There is no such thing that it could be decades in the making, but the wind at the Kentucky Derby is so worth it. Okay, so here’s the story. So back in January, not every January, but almost every January, Drew McClellan, the CEO of Agency Management Institute, was my co-author for the book. So with Authority, Drew and I will oftentimes teach a workshop that kind of kicks off the year, if you will, in an MI workshop that we call Build and Nurture Your Sales Funnel. And so we’ve been doing that now consistently for the last several years. Drew happens to be a huge Disney fan, just like me. And so when he first asked me, would you like to teach at Disney?


And I’m like, yes. It’s been a lot of great fun. This workshop that we’ve been teaching for the last several years is tied into our book. So, we’ve pulled some content out of the book and added some additional things to the workshop. It’s just a whole heck of a lot of fun. So anyway, one of the attendees this year was Jane Pfeiffer, who I mentioned just a few minutes ago when I said thank you. So Jane owns an agency in Louisville called Field Trip. So, she decided to attend our workshop with a group of other agency owners from around the country. And I’ve known Jane now for, let’s see, about five years. So I think we first met in the spring of 2017 at another MI workshop that Drew was teaching, I was attending, and Jane was attending, in Chicago.


Why success doesn’t happen overnight? So we’ve bumped into each other and become friends over the years at other MI workshops and events. And,  so on a break, I think it was probably the first day during a break, I saw Jane in the hallway, and as I was walking by, she said, Hey, Stephen, and would you be interested in a bourbon? As soon as she said the word bourbon, I said yes, And she said, okay, would you be interested in a bourbon tour?  and going to the Kentucky Derby? And I said yes again, and because I said, Jane, you had me at Bourbon. Because I’m a bit of a bourbon fan, I won’t go so far as to say that I’m a bourbon aficionado because there’s so much that I do not know about the process of distilling and, or the distilling process and how Bourbon is made and that kind of stuff.


Listen to our podcast, How to Conquer Fear, with Stephen Woessner to learn more about how success doesn’t happen overnight.


Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight: A Bourbon-infused Derby Weekend


But,  as a consumer with just very, very little sort of context and background, there are certainly some bourbons that I really enjoy and would like to learn more about. So when she said a bourbon tour, I’m like, oh my gosh, that would be fantastic. And then she mentioned the Kentucky Derby, which, which candidly, I, before this, I knew very little about it.  and so she’s like, well, a group of us are getting together in Louisville. I’ll email you the details, and then you and Eric can essentially follow the process and order your tickets. Eric, my business partner here at Predictive ROI, Eric Jensen, and I’m like, oh my gosh, that sounds fantastic for the first weekend in May. So anyway, she sent me the details, and we ordered tickets and got everything squared away.


And then a group of us descended upon Louisville for the weekend, a group of agency owners. And,  and so Jane had mapped out this really, really cool plan for Thursday. We were going to go to several distilleries makers, Mark and Jim Beam, to be exact. Then, the first stop on that day was the Kentucky Cooperage, which I’ll get to in just a second. So, going to go to two really well-known distilleries; yay for that. And then, on Friday, we are going to go to the Kentucky Oaks races.  or excuse me, it was Kentucky Oaks Day that Friday at Churchill Downs. And,  I think the Race, like the 11th or 1st Race that day, is called Kentucky Oaks. And then something that I didn’t know is that on Saturday, I thought for years that the Kentucky Derby was like one Race.


Success doesn’t happen overnight. I always wondered if you’d probably laugh at me here, but I always wondered, what do they do for the rest of the day? And there, there were, let me get the official attendance here. I have it written down in my notes if I could find it.  There we go. The official attendance for the Derby this year, which is a little bit down, is still recovering from the kind of COVID-19 in on a kind of COVID-19 in 00. They actually ran the Race without any attendees. And so they’re still kind of building back, but still, there were 147,94 people at this year’s Derby. A lot of people. And there are people in the infield, and then I don’t know if it’s the appropriate way to say it, but the grandstands, like the box seats and that kind of stuff.


Listen to our podcast, How to Conquer Fear, with Stephen Woessner to learn more about how success doesn’t happen overnight.


Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight: The Thrilling Kentucky Derby Experience


Anyway, so a really big crowd. I had no idea that there was actually an entire day filled with races. And then the 1st Race of the day is called the Kentucky Derby. That’s the Derby, the 1st Race. All of the other races, I don’t want to say, are just races. Each of the races has names, and it’s the 1st Race that Saturday, that is the Derby, and that’s the one that’s televised and all that kind of stuff.  a two-minute-plus race is just phenomenal epic. I mean, to hear the roar of the crowd, I’ve never been in a live sports situation where there were 147,000, nearly 150,000 people. It, it, it was, it was breathtaking, to say the least. And everything that you might imagine, I’m not much of a people watcher, but everything that you might imagine from a people-watching perspective is a hundred percent.


Success doesn’t happen overnight. You know, varying degrees of fashion in women’s hats and dresses and all of that.  an incredible spectacle to see. And it was like, oh my gosh. And I’m not much of a fashionista. So Eric and I had to get advice from Eric’s wife, Kara, and my wife, Christine Jane, kicked in and gave us, and gave her gave us her insights as well. Maryanne Pruitt, thank you again for your advice if you happen to be listening. Maryanne and her husband Lance were joining us, too. And, so, we had a plan for all of this. And I bought in my first Sears sucker suit. I bought a couple of bow ties, and so did Eric. And it was phenomenal. So from just the sort of the scene, it was absolutely everything advertised and just really incredible.


Is it true that success doesn’t happen overnight? So, let’s go back to breaking down the days. So again, Thursday was Kentucky Cooperage, maker’s Mark, and then Jim Beam. So, I had no idea what cooperation was. I knew a little bit about, oh, that there are white oak barrels, they’re charred inside, and then the distillery does whatever the distillery does, had no idea that there was a company in Lebanon, Kentucky known as I think the name of the company is Kentucky Cooperage. That essentially makes all of the white oak barrels available in varying recipes and specifications for pretty much all of the major distilleries in Kentucky and some outlining areas. And so we got to actually go behind the scenes and see how the barrels are made, which was phenomenal, as you might imagine. The factory, the plant, if you will, smelled phenomenal with charred white oak.


And, but we got to see how, you know, each of the staves essentially each barrel consists of, I don’t remember the actual number of staves, but all the puzzle pieces, all the pieces of wood that make the barrel and how those are put together. And it literally is almost like a puzzle being assembled, the different staves of different, you know, widths being put together. So it is such craftsmanship, and the part that really just blew me away was the charring itself. And they’ll char six barrels at a time. And they do that to varying degrees, both heat and length, based on what the distillery wants. And so what was really cool about the Kentucky Cooperage is that not only will they follow those exact specifications of the distillery, the particular distillery once, but they are on their fourth generation of doing this.


Listen to our podcast, How to Conquer Fear, with Stephen Woessner to learn more about how success doesn’t happen overnight.


Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight: A Journey Through Four Generations at Kentucky Cooperage and Maker’s Mark Distillery


So, let’s go back to the 40 years in the making, as we’re talking about Rich Strike. Well, here, we’re standing in the midst of this company. We’re looking at all of the history. Literally, this family that family that owns the Kentucky Cooperage can tie back their work four generations, four family generations, and it’s still privately held. It’s the largest manufacturer of barrels, and it cooperates with barrels today. To trace that Lineage back, they had a lot of photos and stories, so it’s not like they are at the top of the mountain. And I think it was Coach Vince Lombardi for the Green Bay Packers who once said the person at the top of the mountain didn’t fall there. And so it was a really wonderful opportunity to be able to see how great, great grandfather and his family started this business, and how it’s been passed down generation after generation after generation to the current generation, and how they have built this position of authority in the industry.


And clearly, it didn’t happen overnight. And so they talked about some of the trials and tribulations and what it was like through prohibition and all of that. And how, through all of that, they succeeded. They continue to invest in new techniques and all of that and different processes. And it was just a phenomenal lesson in history. Taking some of those lessons learned and applying them to Predictive is about consistency, duration, being helpful over time, listening to client and customer feedback, and adjusting processes. I know that all of that. And then being able to see all of that mapped out visually was, was pretty breathtaking, if that’s the right word.  and then being able to see how they actually fire the,  the barrels and into the exacting standards and how the standards are different for each of the distilleries because they all have their own recipes.


Success doesn’t happen overnight. The recipe is driven largely by the charring of the barrel. And then, the actual Bourbon stays in those barrels anywhere between six to seven years and sometimes longer, depending upon what the master distiller wants as far as the recipe that he or she is trying to instill, which is really cool. So, it was a really, really cool process at the Kentucky Cooperage. Then we went to Maker’s Mark as our first distillery. And here again, steeped in history, as you might imagine, all of the distilleries have this unique story. And tying it back to Lineage, like Jim Beam, if I remember correctly, Jim Beam’s the first bottle of Bourbon or batch of Bourbon was produced. Let me make sure I have this right distillery; I’m pretty sure I do; it was produced when George Washington was still president. And so you think about all of that back through all of the history and everything that they have been doing over, in this case, not just several generations, but hundreds of years.


And how, again, somebody didn’t just wake up one day and decide, yeah, I’m going to have a distillery. There’s all of this process to building that excellence over time. So we went to Maker’s Mark, a really cool family story, and being able to be on their campus was, it felt like being on a small farm with some of the smaller buildings, and how they do things by hand all of that, just the craftsmanship was really incredible. Small batches, larger batches, varying blends, and all of that. It was phenomenal. So, if you’re familiar with Maker’s Mark, you know that the top of the bottle is dipped in red wax, and then it is kind of like a wax seal for letters and back in the day. Each bottle is actually hand-dipped.


Listen to our podcast, How to Conquer Fear, with Stephen Woessner to learn more about how success doesn’t happen overnight.


Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight: Analyzing Odds at Kentucky Oaks


So, each of those sorts of dippings looks different, of course. And so what? They’ll allow you to buy a bottle, and then you can dip your own bottle, which Eric and I did, which was a super cool experience. So then we went to Jim Beam, which was a completely different experience. And when I say a bit more corporate and a larger campus and all of that, because it just is, but really, really phenomenal, what they’ve been able to build over the last couple hundred years legitimately. So then we had dinner that night as a group, and it was just so heck of a lot of fun. We’re actually going to place some photos inside today’s show notes. I’m going to include some pictures, and then we’ll also include a couple of videos from the day so that you can get a more visual perspective of what I’m talking about.


So then it came or then came time for the races on Friday, which was, again, Kentucky Oaks Day, which is what it’s known as. And so Lee,  Jane Pfeiffer’s husband, so Lee Pfeiffer, is real. I mean,  they are Kentucky Derby aficionados. So they’ve gone the last seven years. I mean, they just really, really love it. And I can totally see why. And you know, when some friends and family knew that Eric and I were going to the Derby, of course, the first thing was, were you going to put money on, or were you going to bet at the track? I did a little bit of research, and I thought this was super confusing. And you know, neither Eric and I are, or neither Eric nor I should say, are gamblers.


I mean, it’s just not part of our DNA investment. Yes. Gamble, not so much. and so,  you know, when I did a little bit of research, I’m like, oh my gosh, this isn’t very clear. There are so many variables and so many different options. I really had no idea what I was doing. So I certainly wasn’t going to be, I felt like, almost like double gambling. Because I had no idea what I was doing. And so Lee is driving over to the Derby. He picked us up at the hotel, and we drove over. He is like, I’m a real student of this, and I take like the jockey data, and I take the horse data, and I take the owner data, and I download it into the sheet, and I do this like statistical analysis and all of that.


And I’m like, whoa, wow, you had me at analysis. And like, I love all of that, like Predictive ROI being able to predict probabilities and all of that. So anyway, we started talking about how to do it, and he typically will bet like, like $ on this particular race and how to do it and whatnot. I’m like, oh, okay. So we were talking about that and working through the process, and there’s an app, and you don’t have to go to the window. And, so, I started learning that process. I got to the point where I felt confident enough that I knew how to place a bet in the app, and the next race was the Oaks race, the Kentucky Oaks race. And so they put the probabilities or the odds, if you will, upon this significant kind of jumbotron screen in the infield.


Listen to our podcast, How to Conquer Fear, with Stephen Woessner to learn more about how success doesn’t happen overnight.


Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight: Unexpected Triumph of Rich Strike in the Derby


And there was a horse. I don’t even remember the name of the horse, but there was a horse with 36 to one-odds. So I thought the odds were essentially like if the horse raced 36 times six, then it would have maybe one in 36 chance to win the Race. And it’s not that; it’s actually the bets, the people who are betting on the horses, what their view is of that horse’s chance to win, and then also a reflection of how much money is being bet on that particular horse. I’m like, oh so like, the horses favored to win might have the most money. And again, I might have that wrong. So, if I do have that wrong, please forgive me for that. Because as you can hear in my voice, I’m a neophyte at this.


Here is the best example of why success doesn’t happen overnight: the Kentucky Oats Oaks racehorses were listed as sort of the lineup, if you will. I’m like, oh, wow, look at that. There’s a horse’s 36 to one the underdog. I’m, I’m going to, I’m going to put some money on that horse. Now, when I say I’m going to put some money on that horse, we’re talking about $0. So I decided to put $0 on that horse, 36 to one, and holy bananas, the horse won.  So my $0 turned into $148 or something like that. And I was like, wow, I now know what I’m doing, of course, I did not. It was beginner’s luck if you will.  but a tremendous blessing. I’m like, yay, for that $0 turns into $140 or $148, whatever it was. Anyway, but it was, it was, it was fun.


It was exciting. It was amazing to see that happen. So that gave me a little more confidence that as we stepped into the second day, maybe I would do something similar.  and, again, very small Betts; we are not gamblers. We are the furthest thing from any high roller, and that is not Eric and I. We tend to be pretty conservative. And so anyway, as we get into the Kentucky Derby, it’s a pretty great day. There’s a lot of fun. The races are epic, and we get closer and closer to the Derby, which I think was at 6:57, maybe Eastern time that evening or late afternoon, I guess, evening. And so then they posted the horses, and two of them scratched and were disqualified from the race.


Now, it could be something innocent, or they might have failed drug tests. I mean, there’s a litany of reasons why a horse could be scratched from a race. And I don’t know the backstory of, of either or, I don’t know the reasons that two of the horses were scratched, but one of the horses that got put into the, put into the Race, it was an alternate, was Rich Strike. And no one knew much about this horse.  There’s not much of a track history if you will. It’s been raced for the last couple of years. But, you know, not, not, not anywhere near where somebody, if the horse went into the Race, all of a sudden, a lot of money would be put onto the horse. So when the odds were first released, it was 99 to one. Rich Strike was 99 to one.


And coming off of my big win from the day earlier, I’m like, I said, that’s my horse. And, of course, I know nothing about what I’m doing, but I thought that’s going to be my horse. And so I turned to Eric and said, I bet on Rich Strike. And he said, you, you did what? And I said, yeah, I put some money on Rich Strike. And he is like, okay. And he looks at me, concerned, right? And I said, It’s okay. I just put $50 on Rich Strike. I felt comfortable losing that amount. And I said to Lee, ” Okay, I put $50 on Rich Strike. And he’s like, that’s crazy. And then, and then I mentioned it to a few of the other owners that were agency owners that were in our group that I had done that in, of course, some raised eyebrows, but before you know, the Race, a few of them had kicked in like $10, $0, that kind of stuff.


Then the race starts, and Rich Strike couldn’t have been in a worse position than at the gate. If I’m saying that correctly, the far left position, like if you’re looking at the, the front of the gate, the far left position, which is like the worst position the horses basically in last place, will get that position. And so when they start and the gates open, and you hear the announcement go, they’re off, and the horses come running out. I mean, Rich Strike is Strike was literally in the last position. So as they passed the post, because this was like a mile and a quarter, I believe, if I remember correctly. So they have to pass the post, which is the end of the Race, and then make a full lap around the track to the final post.


So anyway, as they pass us in our seats, I can see the Rich Strike is almost in the last position, maybe in the second to last position.  and I think we caught a really cool video of this. So, I’m going to see if I can put that into the show notes anyway, as they make around or make it around the first turn or second turn, and then they’re going along the back, backstretch. Jane told me that Rich Strike was in 17th place. And I’m like, oh, no, say goodbye to the $50, right? So when they come into the third turn, and what’s really, really cool, you can watch this on YouTube. In fact, I’m going to embed,  or we will embed, the YouTube clip because what NBC did, which was really, really cool, they actually had these drones that worked on the wires kind of like NFL games where they get kept sort of the over the like football huddle shot.


Listen to our podcast, How to Conquer Fear, with Stephen Woessner to learn more about how success doesn’t happen overnight.


Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight: Unlikely Triumph from Last Place


So anyway, they had these drones that were basically flying over the horses through all the turns and straightaways, which was really, really cool because then you could see from above sort of how the, the jockeys were maneuvering the horses into these kind of open positions or shooting the gaps and all that kind of stuff. So as they come in the third turn rich Strikes Jockey starts maneuvering through these small little narrow openings. When they come around, the fourth turn rich strike is on the inside, right up against the rail. So, if you watch this video, you know exactly what I’m talking about, and then it is so bizarre. It was almost like this parting because Rich Strike had a clean shot right on the inside, right up against the rail, but nobody saw it. You know, the announcer, the crowd, everybody was cheering, I believe it was in the number three and number four horse who was like, neck and neck, and they were, they had a little bit of distance from the pack, but it was going to be like that sort of photo finish if you will.


And the announcer’s like, and the three and the four horses, they’re coming down to the post, they’re neck to neck, and I mean, everybody thought it was going to be one of those two horses. And then literally at the end, and you’ll hear this if you watch the clip on NBC, and it’s like in the Three of the Four Horses, which is it going to be, oh my gosh, rich Strike for the Win.


And Rich Strike came out of nowhere and literally blew past these two horses. So, if you’ve not yet watched it, it was well worth two minutes of your time because out of nowhere, it’s like Rich Strike found six or seven additional gears and went bam, right past the other two horses and won by like, I don’t know what the technical term is, but by like, ahead of length or, or, or whatever. But anyway, it was phenomenal. 147,000 people went, bananas, bananas, so much so that Eric Reed, the trainer of Rich Strike, literally fell over. and at one point, it’s like, oh my gosh, medical attention and that kind of stuff. Did he pass out? Did he faint? Did he do whatever? Nobody expected Rich Strike to win. And it took forever for, like, the best to settle and that kind of stuff or whatever.


And I was so excited. I’m like, oh my gosh, rich Strike won. And so the $50 turned into like $750 or something like that. So it was just such an amazing experience to be able to see that live. Okay, so now that I’m done sharing the behind-the-scenes story of the Wind of the Kentucky Derby, let’s talk a little bit more about the true behind-the-scenes and how all of the things that led up to it, okay? And how this was truly something that was four decades in the making. So Richard Dawson is the owner of Rich Strike. And of course, as you might imagine, there were tons of interviews and all of that,  you know, as far as after the Race, it’s like, because seemingly, quote-unquote, this racing team came out of nowhere, which is not the case.


Listen to our podcast, How to Conquer Fear, with Stephen Woessner to learn more about how success doesn’t happen overnight.


Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight: The Importance of Loving What You Do


We’ll break down here in just a second, but I’m going to share this quote with you, and then we’re going to take a quick break, and then we’ll come back and finish the story. So here’s what Richard Dawson was quoted as saying: I think this is in the Washington Post, but he said, I didn’t get into this to win the Kentucky Derby. I got in because I loved it. It was interesting. And then I learned the business. So here’s why I’m sharing that quote with you and coming full circle into why a win at the Kentucky Derby is a relevant story for the Sell With Authority podcast. He didn’t get in this business to win the Derby. That wasn’t a goal. That wasn’t like sort of the five-year plan, or the 10-year thing or whatever, or even something that he envisioned 40 years ago when he started falling in love with what is horse racing.


He didn’t get into this to win the Kentucky Derby. He didn’t get into this to be on the biggest stage, or arguably one of the biggest stages of sport, but certainly the biggest stage of this sport. That wasn’t his goal. It wasn’t so that he could hold up the trophy and be adorned by fans, adored by fans, or that he would win buckets of money, fame, and fortune. He said I didn’t get into this. He wins the Kentucky Derby. He said I got into it because I loved it in Solocast, number one of this podcast. So three, four weeks ago, we talked about the 10 truths of what makes somebody a thought leader, somebody who is genuine, someone who likes to teach, someone who is an ongoing student and loves to learn, someone who wants to share of themselves, somebody who wants to make the industry better, someone who has a passion for the audience, for the industry, for being helpful. And so, what does Richard say? I loved it.


I loved it, and it was interesting, and I learned the business. So again, he wasn’t seeking fame and fortune; he wasn’t seeking to be in the USA today to the Washington Post, or in the Washington Post, or, or be this Cinderella story, or whatever metaphor you want to use. That wasn’t the goal. He loved it. It was interesting, and he learned the business. I’m going to leave that with you for a second. We’re going to take a quick break, and we’ll be right back. Okay? Let’s get back to the story of a win at the Kentucky Derby in the parallels to planting your flag of authority, claiming the ground that you own, and then building a sales pipeline that is full because it’s got a steady stream of well-prepared prospects that are the right fit, fit for you. Okay, so before the break, I was giving, or I shared with you, the quote from Richard Dawson, the owner of Rich Strike, one of the quotes. And I want to continue that here, too. And so this is where he’s speaking about Eric Reed, rich Strikes Trainer. And he went on to say, in recognizing that when Richard decided to have his own race team years ago, there was much that he didn’t know. He came out of the oil and gas industry in Oklahoma. And so even though he had loved horse racing for the better part of 30 or 40 years, there was, he, he had a hunger to learn this new business, this new industry. He went on to say that Eric, meaning Eric Reed and Eric the trainer, was great at teaching me. He said, ” I’m paraphrasing here, but he said I would ask Eric questions.


Listen to our podcast, How to Conquer Fear, with Stephen Woessner to learn more about how success doesn’t happen overnight.


Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight: Building Success through Education and Perseverance


And he answered them generously. He answered them. And this is how we built what we’ve built. And so kudos to Eric, too, because Eric was not only a rich strikes trainer, but he also provided education, insight, experience, wisdom, and all of that to Richard. And Richard, to his credit, obviously had a hunger to learn and wanted to take and apply and take and apply and learn through all of that. Now, what’s fascinating about this is, as I had shared with you early on in the story, well before the break, I said, I shared with you that Eric, again, the trainer, Eric Reed, almost quit back in 016. His barn and facilities burned down. And he literally thought that that was a sign to himself that he ought to get out of this industry and had been in it for years and years and years.


And this was okay. Maybe this was going to be your exit six years ago, just six years ago. But if you’re questioning yourself as Eric was in 016, thinking about, oh my gosh, I’m going to do this same thing now again for six more years. But what if he had quit? What if he had given up? What if he had decided to? You know what, I’m, it’s going to be too expensive, too time-consuming. I don’t want to rebuild. You know, I have failed somehow. I’m just done with this. Look what he would’ve missed.


And I’m sharing that story with you because we have all had those dark days. We have all had those days where we didn’t want to do it anymore. Where it’s like, I mean, how many times can we work through these trials and tribulations? At what point are things going to start clicking? How many more client challenges and problems and all of that working with bad clients, we’ve all experienced that not right fit client and what that feels like, we can all identify to some degree, and maybe we haven’t had Barnes burned down, but we’ve certainly experienced major challenges in our businesses we can identify with, with what Eric May have been feeling in 016. And yet, he persevered. He pushed through; he’s like, no, I’m in this industry for a reason. I love it.


Success doesn’t happen overnight. I love helping the people that I’m helping. I love serving; I love working with the horses and with the animals. I love seeing them grow and develop. I love teaching them something new. I love being able to see them apply what it is that I’m teaching. And I love seeing the horses get better. I love working in the trenches alongside the owners. And clearly, he has an educator’s heart because Richard Dawson, the owner of the team, gives him credit for that. And, so you can very easily see how Eric as a teacher, Eric as an educator, mixed with Richard Dawson, who wants to learn. They create this amazing team, and Richard gives him credit, and he says, that’s how we’ve built what we’ve built, not that’s why I’ve done what I’ve been able to do. That’s not what Richard said at all when speaking about Eric. That’s how we’ve built what we’ve built, and the basis of that is education.


Listen to our podcast, How to Conquer Fear, with Stephen Woessner to learn more about how success doesn’t happen overnight.


Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight: Bridging the Gap


So I’m sharing that with you because when I think about how you can be helpful to your audience, and tying this back to the 10 truths, that’s what your audience, that’s what your clients, that’s what, that’s what your prospects want from you. They want you to help them get better every single day. They want you to step into that gap. They want you to be the bridge between where they are and where they want to be. That’s our job. So when you think of yourself as if you want to think of yourself as a thought leader or not, or if you want to think of yourself as an expert, a guide, a Sherpa, a whatever, I don’t care what title you use or if you don’t use one at all, it’s also kind of a little bit yucky when, when we start calling ourselves thought leaders, right?


You know, let your audience do that.  but let’s not use those words to talk about ourselves. It is entirely self-aggrandizing and feels yucky. But when we think about stepping into the gap, that is our job: to help our clients, help our audience, and help our prospects move from point A to point B. We help create that bridge just like Eric Reid did for Richard Dawson: by sharing the answers, by sharing the insights, by sharing the wisdom, by sharing the track record, by sharing all of the expertise that he could share. And Richard says, that’s how we’ve built what we’ve built. So, here are another couple of pieces: We bring this in for landing because this last piece was actually kind of surprising. And actually, let me give you two more pieces. And that is, in tying this back to going narrow.


So, as you know, in the book, we’re so authoritative; we’re big fans of going narrow. And I should say as, as you know, because that’s assumptive, that you’ve read the book or that you have a copy of the book. By the way, if you don’t have a copy of the book there, there, there will be a link in the show notes to where you can order a free copy. So, with authority and honesty, and maybe you’ve heard me make this claim before, honest, it truly is 100% free. So if you order the book, you step into this fancy sales funnel, or we’re going to ask you, like on the last page or the checkout, we’re going to ask you for $7 and 95 cents to cover shipping. Honestly, it’s a hundred percent free, no strings attached.


Listen to our podcast, How to Conquer Fear, with Stephen Woessner to learn more about how success doesn’t happen overnight.


Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight: Going Narrow and Winning Big


If you would like a paperback copy of the book, we’d be delighted to send you one.  if you like a Kindle version of the book, we can do that for you, too. Again, that’s free as well. So, there’s a link in today’s show notes. Okay, so let’s take this narrower piece deeper as it relates to the racing team. And so stepping into the industry and learning it, and so forth.  sort of dabbling in a number of different race teams. But then, at some point, he decided it was time to go a hundred percent all in and literally went an inch wide and a mile deep and decided to go all in on that commitment. And that was several years ago. Then, look what has happened after making that decision, going all in on the team, and aligning all the resources all the time and all of that toward this success.


But I want to go back to the quote I took from Richard. I didn’t get into this to win the Kentucky Derby. Now, I’m going to give you this last nugget here before we come in, or as we come in for a landing, to illustrate that point because I think that is really easy to say, right? When you, when you go narrow, and you go all in, and you’re going an inch wide and a mile deep, and then you start to, in this case, sort of metaphorically, but actually real, because Richer is a retired oil guy Richard struck oil right? By going that deep. It’s a bad metaphor, I guess. But, when he says, I didn’t get in this to win the Kentucky Derby, it’s really easy to sort of say that kind of like, oh, you just won the Super Bowl, or you just won the World Series.


Yeah. You know, and downplay the success. We hear people do that all the time, but then, but then it’s like, oh, let’s win the next one and the next one and the next one, and inputting all of the things at risk in order to be able to do that again. and again, and again and again. And then you really realize what their true motivations are. So here’s the last nugget: it is kind of proof that he really meant what he said. So the Washington Post actually just at the time of this recording, it’s May 1st. And so the story actually just was released yesterday because when Rich Strike won the Derby, then, of course, the next question is, oh, is he going to run the P Preakness? Oh, is he going to run Belmont? And, like, all of that stuff, right?


Listen to our podcast, How to Conquer Fear, with Stephen Woessner to learn more about how success doesn’t happen overnight.


Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight: Loving Your Business and Prioritizing What Matters


 I hope; I don’t know if I got those backward. I don’t think I did. Preakness is next. So the Washington Post just reported that Rich Strike’s owner, Richard Dawson, and the trainer, Eric Reed, have decided to rest Rich Strike, the resting Derby winner, and not to race him at the Preakness. And so they went on to be quoted as is what I’m trying to say. They don’t measure success by grade one victories, not if they come at the expense of a horse’s health. Going back to Richard’s original quote, I didn’t get into this to win the Kentucky Derby. I got into it because I loved it. It was interesting, and I loved the business. So he has decided not to race Rich Strike at the Preakness because it truly isn’t about that.


It’s because he loved it and learning, wanted to learn the business because he found it interesting. And so, when I think about the motivations of you as an agency owner, a business coach, and a strategic consultant, is there the business side of the business? Of course, there is. Should we be building a thriving, profitable business? Yes. Because as a thriving, profitable business, you can reinvest in your team and obviously make a good living and all of that stuff; yay for that. But there’s more than just that. There’s this true opportunity, as Richard reinforces in the quotes after this miraculous Win almost. There’s more than that. It’s about something that he loved, something he found interesting, something where he could grow and learn and develop, and then also be candidly an example in sharing that experience. So, I am not suggesting that we put him on a pedestal or anything like that.


I do not know him other than the little bit I’ve researched to prepare for our solo cast. I am saying this is an interesting story about a really incredible win at the Derby. And the next thing that he’s immediately asked about is, well, how do you think Rich Strike is going to do at the Preakness? He’s like, we’re not going to run him in the Preakness because it’s not about that. It’s about maybe something bigger than that. So when I think about you stepping in front of your audience, when I think about you stepping in front of your clients and your prospects and so forth, it’s about truly helping them be better at their job every single day. It is our job to stand in the gap, just like Eric did, to provide knowledge, insights, and wisdom that is relentlessly helpful.


Listen to our podcast, How to Conquer Fear, with Stephen Woessner to learn more about how success doesn’t happen overnight.


Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight: Exciting Updates and Events at Predictive ROI


So, I hope that you also found this conversation helpful. I hope you enjoyed the story and maybe some of my little goofy sound effects there. No offense to any of the announcers. So, as a reminder, be sure to visit our newly rebuilt resources section at So that’s where you can also find the free copy of Sell With Authority. You can download other resources if you’ve not yet registered for our Right Fit Clients event.  that is coming up on Wednesday, June 2nd. We are literally running right now, some of the biggest experiments, most comprehensive experiments that we’ve ever run in the Predictive Lab. And we’re going to be sharing all of the data sets, all of the results, everything, and full transparency with you on Wednesday, June nd. So if you’d like to attend, we’d love to have you there as our guest. It’s a free event; you can go to  and we would love to have you there. So, thank you for spending some of your time with me and sharing your time with me as we walk through this really cool win at the Kentucky Derby. So I look forward to being back with you next week, with a really, really smart and insightful guest expert at my side. I’m really looking forward to that conversation, too. Until then, now is the time to double down Onward With Gusto.

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