Changing the game means going a little bit further in achieving your personal and business goals. Today, Rodney Flowers has the King of Collaboration, Visionary at the Helm, CEO of Gain the Edge, Jim Padilla, to teach us how we can give ourselves that extra push to scale our businesses, bring forth positive impact to the world, and become a true game-changer. He talks about his company, what they do, and their objectives in helping others grow their businesses with less stress ahead. Apart from this, Jim identifies some of the key factors that make people become better salespersons. Leading a 120-manpower team, Jim shares their successes and struggles and how they handle each problem as a team. Learn more from Jim as he explains further how the game of sales and entrepreneurship can be a great personal development journey!
Listen to the podcast here:
How To Become A True Business Game-Changer With Jim Padilla
As always, I am excited about this interview. How many of you would like to gain the edge in your personal and business life? How many of you need that extra inch or one more push or maybe one more chance or one more opportunity to reach your goal, to overcome your adversity or to master your challenge, whatever it is? Sometimes we need to go a little bit further or we need one more piece of information to change the game. I’m here with the Founder and CEO of Gain the Edge, Jim Padilla. Jim is known in the personal development and business coaching world as the go-to guy for all things sales. He is the king of collaboration whose purpose is to help entrepreneurs leverage the power of collaboration, to scale their business so they can impact the world the way they intended. Jim is known for instilling into his team, “It’s not what you say, it’s who you are being when you say it.” Welcome to the show, Jim.
Rodney, thanks for having me on. You would know a bit a thing or two about being a game-changer with all the things you’ve overcome. It’s an honor to be around you. I’m honored to know you.
I’m glad that we are of like mind because I know what it’s like when you need another edge, you need to gain an edge. Sometimes gaining an edge, can make all the difference and the world. I love you and what you’re doing. We’re going to talk about a little bit about your company and how you are changing the game and helping other people gain the edge in your space. I’m delighted to have you here. We met and I was impressed with what you were doing. I’m happy that we have the opportunity to reconnect. Thank you for coming here. I love what you say about, “It’s not what you say, it is who you are being when you see it.” Did you write that? Is that your thing? Where did you get that?
It’s something I’ve been saying for a long time and now it’s become our catchphrase. It’s what we’ve defined as rule number one in our company because it’s amazing how many times people get caught up trying to say the right thing, trying to do the right thing, do the perfect thing. There is no such one thing as the right thing or the best thing or the perfect thing. It’s even less important if everything that you do as an extension of you. If you’re being the right person, then the right things are going to come out of you. Whether its thoughts, actions words, things you say or how you impact people. You have to consistently be focused on how you show up for people who it is you want to be. If you’re being that right person, you’re going to attract the right people around you. You’re going to save the right things to them because, in my opinion, you can’t say the wrong thing to the right person.
I want to dive more on this, just myself and to help others because who you are being everything. You talked about with you being the right person. You’ll say the right things, but I believe you do the right things as well. We get caught up on what did you do. “Did you do this?” or “You didn’t do that,” but no one asks you who you’re being. It broadens our perspective on how we show up.
It comes from accountability. This is how we raised our kids and it’s how we lead our teams, how we lead our clients. Someone on our team could come in and say, “This person couldn’t make the sale because this person didn’t have any money,” or “This person said they couldn’t afford it.” I don’t believe in that. There’s no such thing as I can’t afford it. Those are things I don’t have time. It’s not real because we all make all the time in the world for the things that matter to us even when we don’t have time. We all buy things we can’t afford, even if we don’t have the money, because it matters enough for us to do it. Raise your hand if you’ve ever bought something on credit or borrow something from somebody that you didn’t want to have to borrow or whatever it is.
That’s what credit cards are. It’s you buying stuff that you can’t afford. No matter what, our whole society is based on that. It’s nonsense when you say, “I can’t afford it.” What it is it’s an indicator of the fact that you didn’t create enough of a desire to get uncomfortable to make sure you can acquire what is necessary. That’s typically the ask. If I have someone in my team that says, “They wanted it bad, but they couldn’t afford it.” I say, “Let’s look at that then. Who were you being on the call that led them to believe they couldn’t afford it?” That’s a meeting place I go to.
If I talk to somebody and like, “I need to wait until next year.” Who am I being that led them to believe that this is a next-year problem? What did I miss? Who am I not being? That’s the first place you got to go. You got to assume there was something off in you because if they’re talking to you because they were interested, at least there’s some inkling of a problem that they’re trying to solve that you are or expert at solving. I promise you that no matter what it was, if you offered a $10,000 product or $100,000 product or a $10 product, and if they said they couldn’t afford it, I promise you they’re buying it from somebody else or they’re buying something else from somebody else. You have to completely detach yourself from all of those possibilities and start connecting to the fact that every human being has desires.
What is the anchor? We can talk about who am I being. If you don’t have an anchor that can float wherever, what is the anchor when you talk about who am I being? Are you anchoring that to some level of identity or something?
It’s interesting because who do you need to be for the people that you serve? This is also where the more certain you are about what you do and why you do it will lead to a much more grounded sense of self, if I know that I’m here to make a change for entrepreneurs, if I know I’m here to help inspire men. I work with women. Ironically, I work with predominantly women, but I have a huge heart for helping men overcome. I feel a lot of the crisis and problems in America, if not the world is there because the American man doesn’t do what he’s supposed to do. In my opinion, especially the Christian American men sit in coffee shops and living rooms and we talk about stuff. We don’t go out there and be about stuff and we don’t hold people accountable for doing what they shouldn’t. We don’t hold young men accountable to being better men so that they’re not getting girls knocked up all over the place and unplanned parenthood’s popping up all over the place.If you're the right person, then the right things are going to come out of you. Click To Tweet
We don’t have the young women accountable to being better versions of themselves so that they know that they’re precious and they have something worth fighting for. They should want the equality that they’re fighting for. They should be wanting men to be better, not women to be more men and all this other stuff. To me and most of that comes from people searching for an identity, trying to figure out who they are. The more grounded and solid you are, that’s the one thing with our leaders in this country. You may not like them or it doesn’t matter where they on the spectrum, they’re clear about who they are. They know what they stand for, they know who they are, they know what they do and people gravitate to that. That’s where it all begins.
You got to be clear about what’s your position and your place in your purpose in this world. You got to be about it. You can’t have any clouding or confusion. It needs to be clear and certain. People say, “I want what he’s got. I want to follow that woman. I’m going to follow that guy.” Even if they don’t want your product, they want to be around you. They know that you have something worth fighting for them. David Starr Jordan, one of my favorite quotes says, “The world stands alive, stands aside and lets any man pass who knows where he is going.” That’s exactly what happens. Have you ever been out someplace and in a big crowded room? The part that you’re going to see the room parting of the Red Sea because somebody happens to be walking through there who is on purpose. People are more attracted to that.
What is Gain the Edge?
Gain the Edge is an incredible journey. It’s a company that my wife and I have. We specialize in outsourced sales for people in the service-based industry. Most of our clients are in the coaching or development or sell services, soft skills. We have built an environment where we focus on brand assimilation. We don’t focus as much on selling perfectly as we do delivering perfect experiences. If we were selling for you, the whole objective would be to make sure that the Rodney Flowers world, everybody who comes into your world talks to us, we’re delivering them an experience as if they’re talking to you. As if they’re feeling the love and the empowerment and what you provide for them so that they know that there’s a reason for them to be here in your world. As a result of those great experiences, people buy.
We do that from an outsource perspective for other companies. That’s more for companies that are at scale, 7, 8, 9-figures. For companies that are smaller and scaling, we help hire salespeople for you. For solopreneurs, we basically help you optimize yourself as a salesperson. Based on all the things I’ve been talking about, we run you like you’re on our team. We will help make sure you have teams support, you have that sense of self that’s worth fighting for every single day and people who believe in you and believe in you enough love you as you are, but love you too much to leave you as you are. That’s our game all day.
You guys are averaging about 25,000 sales conversions and over $100 million in sales for your clients.
Twenty-five thousand sales conversations a year is the average. There’s a lot of touches for all of our clients. We’ve generated about $250 million in sales for our clients. All it says is that what we do works. We’re good at it. Some people are better, sure. We just know that we figure some things out.
Why did you name your business Gain the Edge?
It’s been three different businesses and when I started it, I loved the name. I was coaching high college-bound high school athletes primarily in basketball and baseball. I was doing one-on-one training with these kids to help them get ready to be in the hunt to be recruited. I was helping them gain that edge on their competition. When I was in mortgage back in 2008 when I was getting ready to leave the game because it was getting crazy, I had this business. It was a cashflow coaching business. People would come to me for refinances and you’re back in that whole bubble when they kept refinancing more and more because the values went up and they were being irresponsible using their homes and bank account. I got tired of it.
I opened up a cashflow coaching business and said, “If you’re going to work with me, then you got to get on my cashflow coaching program because I’m not going to give you money so you can go out and spend it and come back and refinance your house again and get more.” I already had this business called Gain the Edge. I said, “This company is called Gain the Edge,” because I’m helping people gain the edge on their finances. Once I started doing sales training right after 2008, it fit. I’m like, “This name works.” In this current format, this business had been in place for years as we’ve been doing it right now.
I also love your purpose. I was reading through your purpose and it says, “To help entrepreneurs scale of their business with the power of collaboration so they can overcome their obstacles and impact the world the way they intended.” What’s sticking out for me is to overcome the obstacles and impact the world. What’s the meaning behind your purpose?
I was. I grew up in a struggling environment and very abusive. I was born to two teenage parents. They were sixteen when they had me and they had no idea. My dad took off and my mom responded to a very challenging situation with rage and violence. I got beat heavily as a child. Baseball bat, broomsticks, fist, you name it. I was in foster care at thirteen and on the streets at sixteen, running with gangs and doing all the wrong stuff and in jail at nineteen. By the time I was 25, I had filed bankruptcy twice and had been in jail twice. I’ve been divorced twice. I spent my entire life in all these dangerous situations trying to figure out the best way to overcome these circumstances. The only thing I could figure out was to learn how to read my environment and influence the people around me that I was an ally, I was not a threat so that way they wouldn’t want to hurt me. I learned that you could overcome situations by connecting with people no matter what situation they were in, no matter what background they have or where they work.
Because I learned is started helping people see the high side of every opportunity. You fast forward 25 years and I’ve been millions of dollars teaching other people how to master their environment so that other people around them won’t see them as a threat. The result is they let down their guard, they feel safe around you and they give you a credit card and they buy from you. I had no idea that I was learning a sales training philosophy, but it’s become a philosophy in life and, and I’ve overcome so much. I didn’t know anything about my past that says I should have the success and awesome life that I have right now. I want everybody to know. The only thing holding you back from your success is the stories you tell yourself and the excuses you buy from yourself. I want to help everybody overcome. There’s nothing that you can’t overcome.
Why don’t we use collaboration? I know that you did this experience. You got people to buy into your ideas and all of that. On a detailed personal business level, how do we use the power of collaboration?
That’s the key. I leveraged powerful relationships. That’s what kept me safe when I was in jail. That’s what kept me safe when I was in the streets. It was lining up with the right people. I had something to be a value to them. By being a value to them, they took me into their world. As a result, once you’re inside the world, then it’s how do you connect and delivering and build something of value. Business is no different. When you can share with somebody a genuine way to be able to solve a problem for them selflessly for you because you know that as part of your calling and your gifting, it is what your magic you create, they see the benefit of that and then you now become a safe ally for them. They let you into their world.
Once you’re into their world, you can start seeing all the different ways that you can collaborate and that you can provide more value and that you can help grow to the mutual benefit of everybody. That’s how our business models are. We do outsource sales for people. We’re not doing transactions. We integrate as their sales division, as part of their company, as part of their team. We take it on as a partner. We’re going to own this. We’re not responsible for your sales, but we’re going to own it so that when you go to bed at night, you know that somebody else’s is waking up in the middle of the night thinking about your sales and your company besides you.
We’re here to care. We want to help you hit your goals and want to help you overcome your struggles. We want you to be on the mountain top the way that you’re supposed to be. If we could take this off your plate and it frees you up to not have to worry about it, you can responsively grow your company, but you can focus on leading your people or writing your books or driving your mission doing the things that God calls you to do. I’m assuming God didn’t call you to get up and do debits and credits and reconciliations or do sales calls. Not too many people do sales stuff as a living. Most of the time we do it because we have to. I’m one of the crazy people who do it because it’s my gift and my calling to help people make that happen. Your business works the same way. Everybody does. What it is you do frees other people up to do what they can do in their best space so that they’re not trying to master everything. They can focus on and lean into the things they were called to do.
You mentioned how you help people become their best selves and individuals that they can be. I know a little bit about sales. Because it’s all about production, what you produce, who you are being. It’s a great big personal journey when you get into sales in terms of the number of accomplishments that you can experience. What are some of the things that you focus on with that individual when you start working with them?
We focus on one thing we call the sales conversation itself is a conversation for clarity. The whole objective is to get clarity. The clearer you can get them, then they can see with certainty what direction should they go, what steps should they take, what path should they follow. That should be this whole focus because if they’ve come from the right place because you laid out a good welcome mat, they came through your funnel, your sequence, your event, then the likelihood is they’re following you on some level. They believe in you. They understand you to be the expert or an expert on this problem. When you can help them get crystal clear as to why they should continue to move in this direction, why should they be sold out to solving their problem, what’s at stake for them, etc., they go, “I know I need to go in that direction.” It so happens you have a vehicle to help them get in that direction a little bit more effectively. If you’ve done your job effectively and correctly, then they should be buying, but your objective should never be to sell them anything. Your objective is to teach them to get clarity.
I believe that a lot of personal development, clarity is one of them, that is required to be a good salesperson is required for personal development, growth, and success in life in general. Would you agree with that statement?Learning the game of sales and entrepreneurship is the best personal development journey you will ever be on. Click To Tweet
Learning the game of sales and entrepreneurship is the best personal development journey you will ever be on. It’s vital. You will learn so much about yourself and you have to be, because to me when somebody is buying something from you, it’s because whatever they’re buying is because there’s a piece of them that’s missing. Whatever that piece is, the piece they’re buying from you is going to help them help make them whole. If they’re broken in some area, whether it’s finances, weight loss, sales, whatever, you can help make them whole. What happens because they’re not whole, they’re a little bit maybe scared, broken, frustrated. People don’t make good decisions when they’re scared, broken or frustrated. Your job is to help them rise above that so they can see clearly the only way they can get there is if you’re there. Your mission is to make sure that you maintain the highest level, highest standards of comfort, peace, truth and presence. Everything has got to be inside. You got to be showing up as that beacon of hope for them, but nothing but certainty and clarity, the objective for yourself. Because if you don’t have it, you sure as heck can’t give it to them.
They can feel when you don’t have it too. It shows. It comes through whenever you don’t. More importantly, we’re always selling. Whether you’re a salesperson or not, you’re always in some form of selling, even if it’s selling yourself, selling your idea. Selling your being, selling who you are and how you show up in the world. We’re always selling. You know as well as I, as entrepreneurs, we provide a service. We provide something that we can help people with, something that it’s going to make people better, make them greater. If they don’t understand that, we can’t educate them on that particular thing, then we’re not fulfilling our duty. We’re not fulfilling our purpose. It’s so important and I agree. With sales, I think it’s one of the most difficult things to do, but when you learn it, it’s one of the most rewarding things that you can be in, but not for the sake of being in sales in general. Within your life, within all aspects, aspects of life.
It’s funny though because too many times we start trying to be something. Going back to who are you being in the moment. If you and I were talking about a problem you have, I’m going to ask you questions because I care. I’m going to ask you questions and get clarity. You say, “I don’t know if I can do this.” “You have to do this. You can make this happen. The world needs you to solve this, so how are you going to solve it?” We’re in that situation. We get on a phone with a prospect and we don’t say those same things to them. We get too busy trying to deliver the script. If you start treating your prospects the same way you do your friends or the people you care about, they will all turn into clients because most of us wait. You’ll talk to your clients that way, but you won’t talk to your prospects that way.
If you tell me, “I’m going to wait on this. I’m going to struggle for the next six months. I’m going to wait until the first of the year or whatever.” I go, “No, you’re not. You don’t have the right.” You may not be around and your business will crumble. You have a gift to give and people need it. It is your obligation to solve this problem because people need it. People need what you have. I would say that to you because I care. Too many times we won’t say that something to a prospect because we feel like we’re being pushy or offensive. You would do that to your best friend. You would do that to your siblings. Why on earth wouldn’t you do it with your prospects if you care about them?
What do you think that is? Is it fear? Is it the thought of rejection? What is that?
Everybody’s fearful. We’re afraid to look stupid. We’re afraid to be wrong. We’re afraid to feel pushy. We want them to like us. The root of this is if you’re trying to be liked, it runs contrary to truth. Because if I want you to like me, there is a good chance that I won’t tell you the truth because the truth might offend you. If I tell you the truth that you get offended, then you’re going to not like me and then all of a sudden now you may not buy it from me. The truth of the matter is it’s the opposite. When you tell somebody the truth, even if they don’t like it, they resonate with it. They appreciate it because we were wired for the truth. We’re designed for it. You may be the only person who will tell that person the truth.
How many people do you have on your sales team?
We have about 120 in our network. We have salespeople that come and go because we build an environment where they can build their business, come here and work with us around it.
You probably deal with a lot of failures, a lot of rejection. What is your message to your team when they go through these moments of failure or things not working out? How do you get them back on track?
That is literally our full-time job here. That’s what we do all the time every day. It taps into people and their energy and their focus. One of our core traits here is that no matter what you’re doing, how great it is or how bad it is, it’s great and it can get better. You could have the best week you ever had. You could have converted everything you touched and everything you did. Awesome and how do we do it better? You could have the worst week, you converted nothing. Awesome and how do we do it better? It’s helping people get a healthy relationship with their circumstances, with their money, with their relationship, with their business. Because you are not your business, you are not your finances, your circumstances. What’s happening to you is nothing more than feedback. What are we doing with that feedback? This happened, how do we channel it? Here’s the thing. Feedback is to be done with a pencil and not a hammer. As human beings, we are good at beating ourselves up to feedback like, “You were awful, you sucked. You’re whacking yourself with a hammer.” When you do that so many times, then why would you want more feedback?
What’s your feedback structure?
That’s exactly what we do. We simply look at it from an objective perspective no matter what. Nothing is bad and nothing is good. It’s information. We need to look at the perspective on the whole. What happened, what was said and what were the responses? Based on the responses, what could we have done differently that could have led to a better outcome? We make it practical, so there’s no emotion involved from it and it. That’s what you have to be able to do. No different than when you talk to your kid. Your kid does something stupid. The logical thing might be to kick him square in the butt or yell and scream at him. You take the emotion, you put it aside and it was, “This happened because either he didn’t listen or I didn’t set up the environment the right way, or I wasn’t clear about what he shouldn’t do.” It was feedback. Figure it out. I’ll work through your series of questions. It’ll be fine. What makes the most sense? Figure out what can we do? Is this a skill or a will problem? Is this a matter of I haven’t taught them how to handle this or is this something they’re not willing to do?
It makes things simple. In this business, there’s probably a lot of mindset tricks and strategies that people want to implement and that whole mindset, idea and that can be a blessing and a curse at the same time. It’s so much out there. When you have this simple structure, what worked, what didn’t work? What can be done differently? That’s it. It’s done.
The simplest leadership development tool I ever learned in my whole life and I was irritated that it was so simple because I wanted it to be more complicated when someone got it. If you write a T-square on a piece of paper, horizontal line, vertical line, on the left side, on the top, you write the questions you’re asking there. What things did you do that led to this working? Underneath that, what things did you do that led to this not working? On the right side, what things did I do that led to this working and what the things that I do that led to this not working? You fill out the squares. It is so simple. That immediately implies we’re both involved. We both did good things and we both did stupid things. Now how do we fix them?
How much of the strategies did you use? Just like that one, do you apply it to your own personal life?
It is everything. My kids will tell you, both the blessing and the curse of having me as their dad is the fact that I’m a nonstop always looking for self-improvement. They’re very careful with the questions they ask me. No matter what it is, I’m always, “Tell me what you learned from that.” I don’t know how to turn it off because it’s not a role I get into. It’s who I am.
I think we need more people like that because the fact that you can turn it on and off is disturbing because it begs the question are you authentic? In this world, that’s what we’re looking for. We’re looking for more authenticity from our leaders, from those folks that are providing us guidance and knowledge but sometimes we don’t get that. The fact that you can’t turn it off, it says a lot about your authenticity. There’s a quote that you have that I want to talk about that I thought was beautiful. It says, “I am a common man who challenges myself in an uncommon way to be the best me, so I can inspire you to be the best you.” I think that’s a beautiful piece of literature. The quote speaks for itself, but why that quote? What’s the idea behind this quote?
To me, it sums it up. I’m a 5’8”, Puerto Rican from the Bronx. I’m not bigger, faster, stronger and smarter than anybody. I’m just willing to do whatever it takes. I’m willing to go the extra mile. I will work as hard as I need to, work as smart as I need to, be as humble as I need to, sacrifice what I need to and invest what I need to. There’s nothing that I won’t do for what I believe in and that makes me uncommon. It’s not because I’m uncommon. If everybody started doing that, then I wouldn’t be uncommon. We would all be awesome. I’m delusional in my life. I think everything’s possible. I am a romantic. I am an eternal optimist. I believe the best in everything, the high side of every opportunity. I don’t believe that we can’t fly. I just believe that nobody has figured out a way to defy gravity yet. That’s how I look at everything. Technically, that’s all we know because it hasn’t happened yet. It may never happen.
I was at a conference and I was listening to Marie Forleo. She gave a beautiful story about her mom. She’s a young lady from New Jersey. She had this radio and her mom had broken it accidentally. She came home and her mom had the radio torn apart as she was putting it back together and she put it back together. One day she came home and she sees her up on the roof. She was fixing a leak on the roof and it was like, “Mom, you’re fixing the roof. Why didn’t you call someone?” She said, “I did, but they want to charge too much. I decided to come up here and fix it myself.” One day she came home and she sees her mom, I don’t know if it was the stove or something, but it was some appliance in the kitchen. Her mom had it torn apart and she was fixing it. She was like, “Mom, how did you figure out how to fix all these things?” Her mom turned around and said, “Marie, everything is figureoutable.” What you’re saying, everything is possible. We just haven’t figured it out yet. I believe that that’s the reason why I’m walking right now. I’m not, I’m not running, but I’m not in a wheelchair. Years after a diagnosis that says you’re going to be in a wheelchair for the rest of your life, I’m walking. It’s because of that attitude that it might be possible.
I’m fascinated with military guys. I study a lot of Navy SEALS and Green Berets and the guys who were considered the elite. The levels of preparation and readiness they go through. One of the quotes, I was listening to was by a guy named Jocko Willink. He’s a crazy dominating leader in any business space, but he came from a Navy SEAL background and he talks about this term they use called FITFO. In the SEAL team training, they train them for the highest levels of readiness and combat and be able to master the environment that they’re in, but they can’t teach you everything. They can’t account for every possible scenario they may come up, but they teach you how to solve problems at a high level with insane effectiveness. They drop you into some crazy place, some jungle, someplace and you’re like, “What am I going to do now?” They say, “You FITFO,” because at that point it’s time to Figure It The F Out. You got the tools and the skills to figure it out. They don’t give you the tools and skills to answer every problem. They teach you the skills and the tools to figure out the answer to every problem. That’s the same thing. I love it. It stuck with me. We’re the same. Our job is to always be in a constant state of readiness.You're going to trip and fall on your face, and you have to get back up and do it again. Click To Tweet
I believe that and I’ve said this so many times here and in my work, that when the challenge shows up, whatever it is, whether it’s in sales, business, personal, that’s game time. It’s like with the SEALS when it’s peace, there’s no challenge, there are no issues, you’re learning, you stand in a state of readiness. As soon as it’s time to go and the challenge pops up, that’s game time. That’s when you have to get on the field. You have to perform. You have to believe in your training. You have to be ready. You got to be focused because it’s game time. A lot of times what happens is when the challenge shows up, we froze up. We give in.
You don’t want to rise to the level of the challenge and it’s disheartening because two things happen. First of all, the challenges and overcome because you didn’t rise to the challenge. Whatever it was for you to gain out of that situation, you don’t get it, so now you have to repeat that lesson or you don’t reach that level of maturity in your life. If you don’t reach that level of maturity, you can’t expect that level of reward. There is something missing from you that you don’t get because you don’t have this level of understanding, knowledge, maturity or whatever you want to call it. You don’t get the game. That’s the edge. That’s the game-changer mentality.
The problem I think for most people is they’re not even aware that part is missing. We see people all the time that wait until they get hit in the face with the problem before they even start to figure out how to get ready for it. By then, it’s too late. You got to be seeking preparation. You got to be battle-ready all the time so you can stand it off. If you’re battle-ready, you’ll overcome poverty, overcome adversity, you’ll overcome sales challenges. You overcome relationship problems because you’ll see me seeking, how do I do this better? How do I improve myself? How do I find the high side of this opportunity? When it shows up, you’re ready for FITFO.
I believe that’s what life is all about. Most of us want to live a life with no challenge. I’m not saying you want to go around and create unnecessary challenges for your life. That’s not what I’m saying. I’m saying it’s what you’re saying is you have to be ready. Meaning sometimes you want to seek challenges that are going to improve the way you think. Improve your perspective, improve your confidence in who you are and how you show up and improve your ability to overcome. A lot of us don’t overcome challenges because we haven’t been in a pressing situation that required us to reach down within ourselves and pull out the best of us. We haven’t been in that situation. If you’ve been in that situation before, when things show up, you’re like, “It’s the first time with this challenge. I’ve been in situations similar to this before. Here’s what we got to do.”
That’s why I love sports. Not for the competitive nature, but for the challenge that it brings in what’s required to overcome the challenge and then the fact that you don’t win every challenge. Sometimes you need to feel what it feels to not win to appreciate whenever you do it. It’s a little naive to think that you’re going to go through life and not have any challenge and not even want any challenges. It’s a disservice to you to never go through some type of challenge in your life. What inspiration is that? I live my life. I didn’t overcome anything. It was all peachy and creamy to me. That’s it. There’s no inspiration.
What in life that is worthwhile didn’t come on the other side of the challenge? It’s funny because we’ll accept certain things as totally default understanding. If you see somebody with washboard abs and sixteen, eighteen-inch biceps, you automatically know that guy works hard or that girl works hard. We understand that. Because if you don’t, you could be the opposite and never go to the gym and never do anything and your body will atrophy. Your muscles won’t even work. What on earth would make you ever think that it wouldn’t be the same way with your brain or with your business or with your relationships if you’re not constantly putting yourself through new heights to try to climb through? Let me try this. I’m going to try this marketing campaign. It failed and it costs me money at the time. I learned a bunch and now that muscle got stronger. No, I’m starting to build some biceps in my marketing. I’m over here. I’m working on my partnerships and my acquisitions and my sales and all of a sudden, I’m getting a little bit more washboard abs in my sales game.
You start picking together, but if you’re sitting around eating freaking pizza and beer and doing nothing, you’re going to get fat and atrophy and that’s going to happen. If you’re not taking risks in your business if you’re not taking risks and your relationship, trying to challenge new ways of growing together. How do I become a better father? How do I ask better questions? How do I lead from the front instead of push from behind? All this stuff. You’d be a stunt because all of it will lead to pain and frustration of growing. You’re going to learn stuff and learn new, which means you’re going to trip and fall on your face and you have to get back up and do it again. Ask for forgiveness, keep doing it. Pretty soon you got washboard abs and ripped biceps and everything else. You look back in your life and it’s never going to be perfect, but it’s so much farther. If you look back from the starting line, you’re like, “The starting line is way back there. We have made progress.”
Looking back on your life, I know you explained some humble beginnings and did some tough and difficult challenges that you had as a kid. Are you grateful for those situations and stuff?
One hundred percent. There was a period of time where I was a young man because I didn’t know how to deal with any of that. I felt life screwed me over. There was no God and no love in my home. In my first 25 years of my life, it was me and the world. Once I started learning that the gifts that I had, those became to me the way that I could see life and appreciate things that a lot of people can’t because they weren’t given those same gifts. That’s why I’m here to help people see them, heal people through them.
With that experience, do you feel that sometimes the universe, God helps lead us and guide us to where we can best show up through the challenges and optical stuff that is presented in our lives at times?
I roll with Jesus. The way I read the Bible, he doesn’t take these things and give them to us, but he will use them when they’re presented to be able to help grow us and use them for the further into the growing of the kingdom.
What is your recommendation to people when challenges show up? I’m sure your team, you’re dealing with challenges on a constant day to day basis. To be the leader, 120 people and all of them have challenges at various stages in their life and their careers. Your father. You have your challenges, but you say you stay so grounded and you’ve experienced so much success despite the challenges and the obstacles. What would you say to everyone that’s reading is the key to be able to deal with challenges and obstacles whenever they show up in yours?
First and foremost, be curious. Anything that happens, immediately get curious, “Why is that happening?” The second piece and I got this from Marie Forleo, none of this stuff is happening to you. It’s all happening for you. If you get curious, “This man that I know to be a good guy and I know to be a level-headed guy, why is he freaking out right now and yelling at me? Why is this woman feeding her son? Why did this business opportunity I thought was so good at fall apart right in front of my face?” Understand that none of those things are happening to you. You’re not a victim here. You’re are a willing participant. I virtue of the fact that you’re still alive. You are a participant and all this stuff is happening for you. It may happen over and over again for you if you don’t pay attention, but it’s happening for you. You could say, “What do I need to learn? Why this happening? Why did this happen? Who was I being in this process that allowed this happen to happen the way it did to me? How could I change it so that the next time it occurs, I can take advantage of this and make it a win?”
What are your thoughts on leadership?
I believe leadership is the truest form of partnership. I’m all about partnership. I do not believe in the win-win only from this perspective. I think it’s the wrong verbiage. Win-win implies equality. I’ve never met any two people who are equal. If you and I say, “We got a win-win,” that means either you got a compromise or I got a compromise. We both make sure that it’s equal. I tweak it, so it’s win them. Win them means we show up to ensure they win. If my goal is not to be equal with you but to make sure you win and you’re doing the same, I’m going to give you everything I got. You’re giving me everything you got and now we both for a sure win because you don’t ever have to worry about you’re looking over your shoulder because you know I got your back.
If it’s win them, do you ever find that maybe some of your salespeople, because that’s a quarter that they have to meet? There’s a certain target that they have, I’m assuming. In order to make this work, win them has a definition. As long as it’s within this scale, I would say then we can make that happen or not. I’m asking the questions. It’s the way I see it, my knowledge of sales and negotiating and things that. How does that work?
One of the things is when we do bonus structures, we make sure that bonus structures are in relationship with other people. If you and I are on the team and we have a bonus pool, a percentage of every sale goes into the bonus pool. That way I have to ensure you win too, because the more sales you make, it goes into that bonus pool. Even if my motives are selfish, I still have to want you to close all of your sales because then the bonus pool gets bigger. I have to do whatever I can to help you win because if I’m my island, it’s not possible for me to win by definition.
It’s helping everybody see that no matter what, there’s another way to do this. We like to have split sales. When I see commission reports come through and we don’t have any split sales, I know we’re leaving sales on the table. Anytime I have somebody that I spoke to, I’m like, “I don’t know if I can get this guy over the hump.” They tell me, “Rodney, give this guy call because it’s about the client being served and it’s about the win happening.” It’s not about me having the win. It’s about me making sure you win. You’re doing the same thing.
That’s a structure you put in place. You’re putting structures in place that ensure your clients win and you win no matter what.
Without measurement. “Win-win is I got a lot. You got a lot. This month, I’ve got a lot more though.” Win them, it’s like, “I’m okay if you got a lot more because you set it up that way. You want me to win.”Leadership is the truest form of partnership. Click To Tweet
What is the key to growing not only a sales team but a great team in general?
We’re always working on that. We’ve been blessed. We attract a lot of great people. Attracting team is a lot attracting clients, going to be clear about who’s a good team for you. We’ve had many people who’ve come to us who came with not so high recommendations from other people like, “This person’s not a good person,” or “They don’t work hard,” or whatever. The way I see it, I always see the best of everybody because that’s all I expect. I believe in everybody. I see people create people and so they tend to show up for us in great ways. It’s knowing clearly who is the ideal person to be in your world to thrive? Who are the people that you need in your world that are going to help you grow and are going to help you challenge?
I like hiring salespeople that challenge me because then it makes me be a better version of myself. I bring people on and we do the same thing with clients. We bring clients, I’m like, “We’re going to have to work hard for this one. Because she’s tough.” That’s awesome because it makes us tighten up our processes and our systems a little better. It makes things work better. It’s important. It all comes back to the way we started right in the very beginning when you know who you are, you know who everybody else is should be around you.
I was getting ready to go back to that strong sense of identity that is necessary to test. That’s what I’m sensing from you. I’m also sensing watching you talk and deliver. When you talk about this client may be difficult or challenging client, that’s going to make us tighten up our processes. You seem to embrace that. That’s key that’s worth mentioning here is you’re embracing the difficulty. You’re embracing the fact that what I’ve done up to this point may not be enough to get over the next client, to get over the next challenge. It’s something I need to do differently. Out of all of the success that you’ve had, the fact that you’re still willing to embrace that and all the challenges you’ve had, you’re still willing to embrace the fact that. This is a testament to the title of your business, Gain the Edge. You’re still willing to go the extra inch.
I remember hearing Mark Cuban years ago on an interview. He said, “You better be looking every single day, if I was myself trying to put myself out of business, how would I do it? Because you better for damn sure know somebody else’s trying.” If you focus on it, then you’ll find those weaknesses before somebody else does. I’ll give you a quick story on this one too. I played baseball in college and I coached high school basketball. My daughter played basketball in college. I was very blessed to have tremendous athletes. While she was on this recruiting journey, there was a coach here in town who did some classless things and had some cross the lines coaching girls. He was a bit of a local icon so he can get away with everything.
When he came out, it was like oil and water and he bad-mouthed my daughter because she didn’t want to play for him on a travel team one time. It carried weight because he has influence. I got pissed and I took it personally. I was reffing high school ball. As our high school ref, you can block certain games. If I went to this high school, I can’t ref there because I would have a bias. You could block play certain coaches because you have a bad track record with them. I never blocked him. I wanted to block him. At first, I was like, “Block him,” and I went in and I unblocked him. I’m like, “No, I am going to ref his games and I’m going to make it my mission to not tee him up and treat them as fairly and as awesome as I can no matter how much of a jerk he is.” It was hard. I take them up a couple of times. I did. I challenged myself I put myself in the arena here. I am going to come out of this on the high side. It was tough. You learn some stuff about yourself.
How can people connect with you if they wanted to learn more about you? Maybe I didn’t want some hit with the sales, some motivation. I don’t know what it is.
The best way you find me is to go to JimP360.com and that is my 360 site. If you’re on Linkedin, you can connect with me on LinkedIn there. If you’re on Facebook, you find me there, see my YouTube videos. Go onto the contacts button there, shoot me a text, say hello. I’d love to help you with anything. I can get to know you, but that’s the best way. That way you can join me on whatever platform works best for you.
Thank you for that. I want to talk about scaling because I know you’re big into scaling. That’s what you do. You have other people scale. What are some of the fundamental tips that you would give to entrepreneurs and salespeople about scaling?
That’s a whole discussion of its own. Scaling is something that I believe if you can, you must. Most people don’t do it for fear. They’d be like, “You imagine running $1 million business way much harder work than running $100,000 business, etc.” I got news for you. It’s easier. The bigger the business, the more resources you have, the more team you have, the more opportunities you have to have people take on greater tasks. You put yourself in a position to serve different people. The bigger business you become, the more people you can help, the more people you can reach. The more people who are wanting to be part of what you’re doing because you’re creating something.
I would invite you to see that as a possibility first and foremost. If you can take that on, find any way possible to make it happen and then focus on who, not how. You do not have to be the person who knows how to solve it. A hundred problems a day gets solved in the company that I have zero to do with it. I don’t even know how stuff happens. I just know they happen. You got to be clear about what you want to happen, what’s the outcome and then start bringing people into your world. Who, not how. Bring into people who let them know how to let them figure out the how. Because they probably can do it better than you anyway.
Which is how we started this conversation with the collaboration.
Just know that if you don’t take advantage of accelerated growth, it has never been easier or cheaper in the history of the world, in the history of humanity to grow and scale a company faster. There’s so much at your finger. You probably don’t have to get up from the chair you’re sitting in, you could find a marketing person. You can find a technology. You could find an app and a partner who can open the door to 10X growth for you. That’s not hyperbole. I hate using that term because everybody uses it. It’s real. When I started doing business years ago, websites cost $25,000. It was cost-prohibitive. You could not open a business unless you had money. Now, you can.
You got to be able to put your message out there and ask for people who want to help and be amazed at how many people want to help. The last piece I’ll give you on that is you can scale with a relationship. The whole Kevin Bacon, seven degrees of separation. You’re six to six steps away from everybody in the world. Not anymore. One. Between your email list, your Facebook profile, your Instagram, I guarantee you the person you need probably know somebody on your list. That should excite the heck out of everyone reading this. Know that you are that close to the biggest introduction had to change your life forever.
What is your response to the money game? Because a lot of people say, they don’t have the resources. I hear you outsource in different areas. People say, “I can’t afford it. I don’t have the money to buy that.” What’s your response to that?
Be creative. If you sit here and tell me you don’t have the money, I would say, “Do you have cable? Do you have a TV? If you do, then you still got money. Take your TV off the wall because you shouldn’t be sitting around watching it anyway. You should be out hustling. Take that TV down to the grocery store and don’t come home until somebody gives you $300 for that.”
One more thing I want to touch on here before we end, which is I thought it was very interesting that you put this here is using your business to serve God. I know you say you rode with Jesus. You’re a God-fearing man. I want to give you an opportunity to tell us your philosophy about this.
My wife and I are big on helping what we call as a throwaway society. We have a heart for teens, especially teens that are aging out of foster care and stuff. Everybody wants cute, cuddly kids to adopt. Nobody wants to adopt a pain in the butt teenager. They get discarded. I go in every week to Folsom State Prison and serve the inmates. I’m a chaplain at the prison there, and on Sundays, I go in on rotation and do Sunday services. It’s not because I’m some crazy, awesome man of God. Nothing like that. It’s because I believe we’re called to go visit the prisoners in jail, take care of the widows and orphans, and take care of people. That’s what Jesus charged us with. I want them to know that this is not their story. This is the starting place of it, but this is not where it ends and your circumstances don’t define you.
No matter where you are, no matter who’s discarded you, no matter what mistakes you’ve made, they’re all overcomeable and you are not defined by where you stand and that you can overcome everything. We’re big on helping ex-cons get work and employment. We’re in a process of building a call center for ex-cons so that they can come out and have a purpose, have incomes. They say off the street, get the programming and support and mentoring that they got on the inside so that they can have continued growth on the outside. We want to turn the recidivism rate. Instead of 76.6% of men convicts going back in, we want to 76.6% staying out. Imagine what that will do to society. Lower the burden on the government and change people’s perspective. It would change our society because they see people transform into their eyes. Instead of thinking that because you’ve done it once, that defines who you are forever and not a chance.
We’ve all made mistakes. Some big, some small. It’s all subjective. Imagine if you weren’t given a second chance.There is no growth if there are no risks involved. Click To Tweet
I know I wouldn’t measure up if you judge me by my past.
Thank you for coming. This has been a lovely, wonderful conversation. I can keep going and I want to support you. If you could send me more information about what you’re doing with the prisons and how we can be of support to you, please let me know. I would like to learn more about that. Maybe the audience does too. If there’s something that you can put out there so the audience that they wanted to support that mission that you have going on here if you want to say something about that right now, I don’t know if there’s a link or something that.
Unfortunately, we’re in the process of building all that, but it will all show up at the JimP360.com. Make sure you visit that. That’s me. That’s the best place for you to intersect me wherever you can. We’ll be sharing information about the journey that we’re on with all this and absolutely anybody interested in contributing time, effort, energy, support, love, clarity, whatever. We would take it all.
What is the game changer mentality message you would leave with people?
Never let your circumstances define you. You have to know that there’s always something more. Whatever it is that you have created, whatever you’ve dealt with, whatever mess you’re living in, that has to become your message. Whatever wounds that you’ve carried, that stuff has got to turn to wisdom. Turn those wounds into wisdom, your mess into your message and know that everything that’s happening in your life right now is happening for you, not to you.
Jim, thank you for coming. A wonderful, powerful, beautiful human being. I love you for what you’re doing. I love the work you’re doing. I love the work you stand for and who you are. Thanks for coming on the show.
I appreciate you, Rodney.
Remember the circumstances, the situation, they don’t define you. Until next time.
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About Jim Padilla
Jim Padilla, King of Collaboration, Visionary at the Helm, CEO of Gain The Edge
As founder of Gain The Edge, Jim is known in the personal development and business
coaching world as the go-to-guy for all things sales, and as a powerful collaborator.
With their army of heart-centered sales rock-stars Jim and his wife Cyndi partner
with top industry leaders to help exponentially increase their online launch, and
Jim has created a strategic sales system and a sales force to be reckoned with! His
team averages over 25,000 sales conversations per year in a variety of different
formats. Gain The Edge is the secret weapon of choice for many industry experts;
anchoring over $100 Million in sales for the likes of Josh Turner, Justin Livingston,
Lisa Sasevich, and Bill Baren. Jim’s unique, behind-the-scenes position gives him a vantage point few others have. This positioning allows Jim to keep his team and his clients on the cutting edge of sales conversions strategies. Others talk about what should work, Jim can tell you whether or not it did. He knows things most people simply can’t! Jim’s purpose is to help entrepreneurs scale their business with the power of collaboration, so they can overcome their obstacles and impact the world the way they intended.
At Gain The Edge Jim is known for instilling into his sales team… “it’s not what you say, it’s who you are being when you say it”
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