Thursday, 6:36 PM
I kept my former life a secret for a long time.
I only recently revealed it to the 11 people in my Kitchen Table Entrepreneur coaching program I did earlier this year… and more recently to the folks on my "Turn Failure Into Success" teleseminar.
For years I kept it a secret from all the new people I met. I wasn't embarrassed about it or anything… it was just a chapter of my life I wanted to put behind me.
Heck, I even avoided THINKING about it for the longest time. It was a role I played for too long. I simply wanted to move on and immerse myself in my next role.
But over the past year I've been able to think about a lot of my experiences without the accompanying "fight or flight" physiological reactions I used to have.
And finally allowing myself to remember that stuff in a cool, calm and collected manner is allowing me to cull some extremely valuable marketing and life lessons out of those experiences.
At the ripe young age of 21 and naive as can be… I entered the Dayton, Ohio police academy.
Even though being a cop had never been my life-long dream, I stayed at that gig for 12 long years.
In my first 2 days out of the academy, I saw my first dead body (a women lying buck naked in bed with her throat cut)… had a guy try to shoot me with a 12 gauge shotgun (thank God for stupid criminals with cheap guns that misfire)… and saw a woman stab her boyfriend with a 12 inch serrated knife right in front of my very own eyes.
Yeah… I worked on "that" side of town.
I spent 8 to 12 hours a day with the dregs of society and witnessed the worst cruelties a human being can possibly inflict on another human being.
And I wouldn't trade the experience for a million bucks.
I left that gig back in 1997 for the wonderful world of entrepreneurship… and haven't looked back since…
I'm just now beginning to realize how much I learned about life because of that job.
A lot of it ain't pretty… but it armed me with information most people will NEVER discover… and probably don't have the stomach to discover.
Anyhoo… I was on a teleconference with one of my mastermind groups today and it reminded me of a valuable lesson from my cop days.
One of the mastermind members was lamenting the fact that he's having to work twice as hard just to keep his business from going downhill. And try as he might, he's losing ground every month.
An episode from 3rd district, 3rd shift role call immediately popped into my mind.
Picture the stereotypical old school police sergeant with the big "handlebar" mustache. (What is it with cops and firemen and their mustaches?)
Yes, just like in the movies and on TV… the battle-hardened guy who twirls the end of his mustache while reminiscing about the riots in the 60's and all that stuff.
THAT was my sergeant at the time.
As this guy in my mastermind group was going on about having trouble getting clients, the very first thing that popped into my head was my old sergeant twirling the end of his mustache and barking at us in role call…
"Goyaakod you lazy sumbitches!"
For almost the entire first 6 months on the police department, rookies are treated like second-class citizens. You have to watch every P and Q and it's actually best just to keep your mouth shut as much as possible.
I did not always adhere to that particular tradition. (And paid the price for it, too.)
In my blissful ignorance, I raised my hand and asked what "goyaakod" means.
See, we were experiencing a rash of burglaries in a certain neighborhood… and it was getting worse.
The detectives weren't having any luck and none of the guys on the street had any leads either.
Our sergeant knew if we waited for the detective section to solve this case, months from now he'd STILL have a bunch of pissed off burglary victims coming to our district office complaining every day. (Most crimes get solved by the uniformed officer on the street… NOT the detectives.)
So he wouldn't let us pass it off to the detectives. If we wanted the case solved, WE had to handle it.
In response to my forbidden rookie outburst during role call, the sergeant got up from behind his desk and slowly walked to the back of the room where the rookies were banished.
He bent down, got right in my face so close I could smell the coffee and cigarettes on his breath… and shouted…
"Get off your ass and knock on doors!"
THAT, as I soon discovered, is one of the most effective investigation techniques in a cop's bag of tricks.
GOYAAKOD has solved more complex criminal cases than you could possibly imagine.
And funny thing…
It has solved most of the problems I've experienced as an entrepreneur, too.
Look, I hate to be the bearer of bad news… but we're hip-deep in the crappiest economy I've ever seen in my entire life.
Many people are working twice as hard just to make HALF of what they were making just a couple years ago.
What has worked in the past isn't working as well nowadays.
If you've bought into the lies propagated by the IMGOBC… that you can sit on your ass, send out a few e-mails and watch the sales come flooding in… you're going to starve.
The people who are going to make it in this economy are the GOYAAKOD entrepreneurs.
Want an example of a GOYAAKOD entrepreneur? This post is a good place to start.
The GOYAAKOD entrepreneurs are the ones who won't just survive in this economy… they're going to prosper.
While thousands are dropping like flies all around them, the GOYAAKOD entrepreneurs will…
… Continue knocking on door after door…
… Facing rejection after rejection…
… Disappointment after disappointment…
… Picking themselves up and dusting themselves off, time after time…
… And celebrating the biggest victories.
Just like that wide-eyed, culture-shocked 21 year old rookie on the Dayton police department discovered all the way back in 1986…
There's a simple solution for every single business problem you're facing right now…