Revealed: The Success Formula That’s Made In Japan…


When you buy electronic goods or a car and you see it’s made in Japan, what does that make you think about the quality of your purchase?

What if I told you that, less than 50 years ago, the general response was quite different when people saw that ‘Made In Japan’ sticker? It signified cheaply made goods, the same way people react to the ‘Made In Taiwan’ label today…

So how did this turnaround happen?

No doubt, an insistence on restoring national pride after the decimation of World War 2 played a considerable part. Honour and pride in your work are two characteristics that form the backbone of the Japanese identity. Yet there’s another concept that transformed Japan’s standing on the world stage, and turned a World War 2 enemy into a firm ally of our modern, Western civilisation.

It’s a single word, known as kaizen.

This word features constantly in their language and can apply to any number of pursuits- kaizen in their relationships, kaizen in their martial arts training, kaizen in their business ventures or their production line. Essentially, it’s the principle of getting a little better in some way, every day. The idea is that if you don’t see a man for three days, when you see him on the 4th day you should be able to notice a subtle change in him.

Tony Robbins loved the idea of this concept so much he coined his own term for it: CANI (short for Constant And Notable Improvement). Business, like life itself, should grow following this concept.

It’s like being on a golf-course: If you aim to get a hole in 1 and settle for nothing less, how many times do you think you’ll have to swing at that tee with your wood until you pull it off? How much time will you waste trying to achieve it? Good luck getting that hole in 1 before dark!

The real goal is to move forward, 1 putt at a time. Make just one little improvement each day. It may not feel like real progress of any sort after just one day- or even a week. But after a year? You’ll definitely notice an improvement…


All through Highschool, I was a skinny streak of a guy. I remember in Year 11, some (then) friends of mine found the time to draw a picture of a guy with a body like one of those malnourished African kids- ribs sticking out- but they depicted my head on it. This at a time when I thought girls were only interested in guys with the buff surfie/ footy player physique. So needless to say, my self-esteem around that time was already pretty low. I was 6″1 with no chest and while it wasn’t hard to build definition if I exercised, in terms of actual mass I remained stagnant. Throughout my 20’s I’d weigh in around the early 70’s on the scales, and during a hectic 2016 I weighed in around 67kg at times.

I began to figure maybe this was just something I’d have to live with…

But last winter, I returned to the gym after a 5 year absence. I’d regularly go for walks, ride my bike, do floor routines at home- but I wanted to push myself further, see what was capable and if long-held fitness and weight goals could be realised with a change to my training and my supplements. So I joined the local gym, found the protein supplement that suited my needs- and off I went.


The first week training, I was sore in a whole bunch of places. My ribs tingled, my arms ached constantly. I expected as much. Looking in the mirror, no notable difference. On through the rest of the winter, right on throughout spring and into the summertime I went, training 3 times a week, usually at night when it was cooler and less crowded. The aching vanished after that first week and slowly I could lift heavier loads, ad more weight to the equipment I used. The scales told half the story- soon my lightest weigh-ins were still heavier than I’d ever been until a couple of months earlier. People would comment on how I looked different. Pants felt tighter around my waist, and when peeling off t-shirts I had to be careful not to rip them!

But it didn’t really hit home until one night in December when I snapped a selfie while I was training, to show my progress to an old friend from interstate. I snapped the photo-  looked at it- and stopped a moment.

Have you ever seen a photo of you and not recognised yourself? Like obviously you know its’ you- but looking at that photo, it feels as if you’re looking at another person. Because that’s how I felt in that moment. It was a surreal feeling- to see this guy with a shaved head, well-kept facial hair and solidly defined arms who looked like other blokes I’d seen over the years-  guys I once would’ve thought of as “one of those gym junkie douchebags”- and to realise the guy in that photo was me

All those individual sessions, those supplements I’d take before training- and here was the result after just a few months. What could the results be after a year?

To get the big results, maybe ones you’ve dreamed of for years but never quite managed, the real goal is to move forward, one putt at a time. Just one small improvement each day. It may not feel like much improvment, but give it a year and you may have a life you barely recognise when you look in the mirror- so choose wisely!

Whether it’s in your finances…

Or your career…

Or in your relationships…

If you can improve in some small way each day, then that’s success.

The journey of a thousand miles begins with one small step, and the game of life gets better with just one putt forward per day!




Why Your Most Valuable Leads Don’t Trust You (A Tale Of Two Kitties)…

March Blog Image 1

I’ve got something to confess-

I’ve never really warmed to cats. Dogs are great- alway happy for a pat or a cuddle on the couch, when you come home after just a few hours away they act as if they haven’t seen you in a month. Plus you can play all sorts of games with them and teach them a bunch of tricks to perform.

Cats on the other hand?

They come and go as they please. Sometimes they’re happy for you to scratch their belly or cuddle on the couch- but then they up and leave, back to their own world. I’ve seen videos of dogs howling on their owners’ graves, but you could keep a cat 10 years then die, and all the cat would care about is who’s going to provide it with its’ next meal? I really don’t get the “lonely cat lady phenomenon”- surely if you have that yearning for a regular companion round the house who shows you affection, you’d get a dog, right?

But there’s a cat in my neighourhood I’ve grown rather fond of. She’s a little black cat with yellow eyes, named Kasey, and most times when I’m out for a walk and I pass her driveway, out she comes to greet me. She meows, rubs herself against my legs and purrs to such an extent it’s like she’s a battery operated toy. I’ll stop to run my hand along her head and her soft back, and when I set off again she follows after me for several houses. I actually bought a packet of cat pellets, and whenever I set out on a walk I take some in my pocket to give Kasey a treat when she leaps up to her feet to see me. She knows I’m good news and I bring treats- and responds accordingly.

But over 20 years ago, I knew another cat who was very different from Kasey- and it wasn’t until long after I last saw him that I realised he’d taught me a critical lesson  about selling…

Kenny was my late Grandmothers’ cat. He was a tortoiseshell with big green eyes, a rescue cat found in a gutter by the RSPCA, and my aunty gave him to my Grandma as a house companion. Nobody knew where Kenny came from- whether he’d had a previous owner, whether he’d been neglected or abused- but he was such a timid creature! We’d rock up to my Grandma’s old house and he’d peer through the mesh of the screen door- then scamper away through the living room, down the hallway and retreat to his hiding place- under my Grandma’s bed in her room at the back of the house. The hallway was dark and it had that musty, decades old smell to it. And in the shadows you could just make out those big green eyes, shining in the darkness with the little mouth bared wide.

Hisssssss! Hisssssssss!

Yet this didn’t deter me. Instead, it only made me more determined to bring him out of his shell and to realise that an 11 year old boy wasn’t a threat to him, regardless of his life before he found a new home with my late Grandma. But how could I win his trust?

Then I got the idea-

I scooped up a handful of cat pellets from the bag in the laundry. This particular day, Kenny had retreated under Grandma’s bed. He saw me as I eased into her room.

Hisssssss! Hisssssss!

I laid a pellet on the carpet, just out from beneath the bed. Then another one about 20 centimetres away. I laid out a dotted trail of pellets that led from the bedroom, halfway down the hallway and out of the shadows. And it was enough to lure Kenny out from under the bed. He gobbled up the first pellet. Moved onto the next one. Ate that. Saw the next one and moved onto that. Crouched down, I let out long, slow, silent breaths as I saw him make his way down the hallway, munching each pellet that brought him closer to me, aware of my presence. Eventually he was right there, less than a metre from where I knelt. If he kept going, he would get not just one pellet- but a whole cluster of them.

But to get the jackpot, he had to do one thing-

Those pellets were in the palm of my hand, fingers resting on the linoleum floor of the hallway. To gobble up those tasty treats, he’d have to reach my hand and make physical contact with me- put his faith in this stranger and make the final connection. He saw the pellets right there in front of him…

…And I felt his whiskers nuzzling the palm of my hand as he claimed his reward, his teeth making a tiny crunching sound. I carefully reached out to run my hand along the top of his head- and he let me. Instead of fleeing back to the familiar shadows under Grandma’s bed, he stuck around after the pellets were gone and didn’t have a problem with me patting him.


Unfortunately, next time we came around he seemed to have no memory of our previous exchange. So again I had to coax him out of his hiding place with more pellets. Again he made it to the end. This time, he even lay back on the cool floor of the hallway, let me scatch his belly and playfully nipped at my fingers. But then my 3 year old sister came noisily clomping down the hallway, causing Kenny to leap off down by the ancient wooden radio and hiss loudly.

“Mary- you wrecked it!”

And I’d been going so well…

So what do a couple of cats I’ve known, 20 years apart, have to do with the art of successful selling?

While you have leads like Kasey- happy to give you attention, pay up and get on board with what you’re selling- you’ve also got those leads with the potential to deliver a truckload of money and referrals to your door. But they need to trust you first. They need to know you’re one of the good ones. If you try selling to them straight away, they get cold feet and you’ve missed a golden opportunity with what could’ve been a top-value customer.

Think of it like the girl who’s been hurt before. You know these girls- you like her, she likes you and it should be a beautiful romance between the two of you BUT- she got her heart broken by an ex who treated her badly. It had nothing to do with you, you’re nothing like that guy- but she’s been hurt and she’s wary of the same thing happening to her again.

A lot of your leads are the same. They’ve been misled in the past by smooth talkers and snake-oil sellers who made big promises but didn’t deliver once they’d paid up in good faith. Even though it had nothing to do with you and you know for a fact you’re one of the good ones- it’s a harder task to win them over. Stories like this make my blood boil because these operators don’t just wreck it for the person buying- they wreck it for people like us, further down the line:

The Horror Pitchfest

I know, it sucks- but that’s the unfortunate reality of selling. If you’ve been the one burnt in the past, then you appreciate how difficult it is to trust the next person who comes along- especially if they’re selling a similar product or service to the one you got stung by.

So, how do you convert those prospects with cold feet? How do you show them you are, in fact, “the real deal” and get them to trust you enough to go all in and show you the money? Here’s how you do it:

  1. Social proof. Let them see testimonials from happy clients or customers of yours, let them hear raving referrals. This is especially effective if the people singing your praises are similar to them in regards to age, demographic, industry etc. Few things sell you better to somebody than when other people say great things about you!
  2. Share your nuggets of wisdom. Let them discover what your business is about and who you are- give them the full tour. If they trust you, then they trust your business as well. You can achieve this by regularly sharing blog articles (like this one) or videos in related industry groups on social media pages. Impress them with your knowledge and your expertise- and let them see that you’re “the real deal”.
  3. Invite them to join your database. What you achieve with blog articles or videos in the above point, you can also achieve with a regular e-mail. Provide links to your latest articles, videos, presentations and your site.
  4. Erase their doubts head-on. Sometimes you can just point out that you’ve heard the horror stories from other people who’ve got their fingers burnt. Explain the worst case scenarios and then tell them why you’re different. This is a fantastic way of demolishing that trust obstacle, because they feel like you truly understand them. This makes it MUCH more likely that any resistence vanishes- and they’ll reward you for bothering to understand.

I understand that to create regular content that

a) Sets you apart

b) Earns their trust and,

c) Generates new sales-

is a time-consuming affair. That never changes, even for somebody like me (and I do this for a living!)

So if you want to convert your “cold” leads into happily paying customers, then let’s talk- and get your content needs taken care of- while you simply keep doing what makes you “the real deal”: Contact Me