Keynote Speaker, Business Adviser, President of Private and Public Corporations, Inventor, Mentor and pretty good guy, David M. Corbin has been referred to as “Robin Williams with an MBA” because of his very practical, high relevant content speeches coupled with entertaining and sometimes side splitting stories.
In this episode, David Corbin talks about how he keeps a business and life balance, as well as in everything that he does, from his relationships to his health. He also talks about some rough times that he’s been through and how that has helped his success in everything he does today.
Today, we are talking to one of the members of the Clear Business Directory and what it means to operate a transparency business. I am super excited folks because today we have the one and only David Corbin on the show. David is the founder and CEO of Performance Technology Group and he joins us here today. David, thank you for being on the show.
Happy to be with you, Justin.
David, you are a mentor to so many people, to include myself. We met at CEO Space. You’ve just done so many things. I don’t want to bastardize your experience, can you share with the listeners what you do and who you’ve done it for?
What I do professionally and what I do in life are two of the same things. I love to explore thoughts and ideas. I have been doing this forever. I mentor people. I love doing that. I do it with some amazing people. Some are amazingly famous. Some are not famous. But each of them has their qualities and characteristics that they bring in making this a better world. They do it in the business format, which involves money. They are in the pursuit of the money while they are in pursuit of doing really good stuff. Then I invent products and services. I build companies around those products and services. I sell those businesses and move on. I’ve got a couple of them right now that I am really excited about. I do a whole bunch of fun stuff. I love health and exercise. That’s a big part of my life too.
You are what I like to deem as the quintessential business owner/entrepreneur, because your life is full of this balance in everything that you do, from your relationships, to your business, to your health. You are the full package of what it really means to be in business nowadays.
Thank you for that. Thank you for noticing. Balance is an interesting term. I think sometimes the first name of my balance is off because you are running around and you’re a little off balancing so many different things here. I’ve got a beautiful full day today after yesterday having a magnificent day of exercise, tennis, visiting with friends, sitting and watching some of the crazy news.
I do a talk now in a keynote called the Unencumbered Entrepreneur. In that, I teach how important it is to be unencumbered of physical, emotional, and spiritual encumbrances because it’s difficult enough to be a successful entrepreneur. Where today, it’s as though you got to jump through hoops and they make the hoops smaller and then they set the hoops on fire. It is tough being an entrepreneur, but it’s real tough when you are walking with cement shoes carrying excess weight emotionally and physically. That’s why I am real big about reminding people the importance.
I’ll ask people, “I wonder how Steve Jobs is spending his money lately.” It’s a great question, isn’t it? How is Steve Jobs spending his money lately? He is not because he doesn’t have this gift of life right now. Entrepreneurs must appreciate that and not take their eye off of that while they have their eye on achieving their entrepreneurial success. Does that make sense?
It makes absolutely perfect sense. The value you bring to your clients just comes from that history of your experience and life, that you are doing what you teach people to do. That’s a big deal. There are a lot of people out there who get involved with other consultants and coaches who are talking the talk, but they are not walking the walk. That’s why I love that you are part of the Clear Business Directory, because you bring so much value to your clients.
You operate in transparency. You are one of the most authentic people that we know. Your book, Illuminate the Negative, is such a sticking point. For me, it’s one of the things that truly resonates with what we do with the Clear. What you bring to your clients is just absolutely amazing. David, can you share with our audience, if there’s one thing that you wanted a particular client to know about you, what would that be?
That’s a great question. I want to be as clear and authentic as I can with the people that I work with. It’s not that I want to be, I am and I need to be. I believe that that crosses all industries and all individuals. Just being who we are I think is critical. On my Facebook page, for example, I post liberally, just sharing my life. Because a lot of people, audiences or clients, they want to know and I know that they want to know, so I just live my life openly and it holds me accountable.
I remember once working with an executive of Tony Robbins’ company. I was doing some speaker training with him. I had him on video and whatnot. He’s a really neat guy, a soft spoken guy from Midwest. As soon as the camera went on, he started imitating Tony Robbins. It was like, he went from being his authentic him to somebody else. Years ago, when Brian Tracy and I were business partners, I used to give birth to process management consultants. When I would have them do their presentation, they would be bouncing on their heels and using their hand gestures, exactly like Brian. I had to say, “You’re not a Tony-clony. You’re not a Brian-clony. You are you for crying out loud.” My objective with them has always been to pull away the veneer so that they could be their authentic selves. Then I realized that’s probably my greatest selling attribute, having that veneer removed. I have no choice but to be in concert, in harmony, and integrity with my values and my beliefs. Of course, our children hold us to that accountability. I have a very precautious daughter named Jenna. They can call us on our stuff. Sometimes it’s cute and funny, but other times it’s enlightening. Clear Directory is like that.
My illuminate concept is in concert with what you guys do. I say you need to face it, follow it, and fix it. In business, there are some people, executives, leaders and the like, who have an inclination or an intuition about someone or something, but they suppress it. They don’t face it. They don’t deal with it and it comes to bite them in the butt. The same thing with vetting partners or vetting employees. When you don’t have the reckless at hand and you are not following your intuition, you can get the big pile of what you do.
Anyway, what do I want people to know about me is that I am not a consultant. I am not a mentor. I am not an author. I am not a keynote speaker. I am a human being. I am an embodied spirit who plays the role of those things. Happily, I have a lot of people that think I play the role pretty well, but I believe those are just roles. My objective in life is to love and be loved, serve and be served, acknowledge and see and the like to live a happy and big life. That’s what I do for a living.
It’s a pretty amazing way to make a living if you think about it. There are so many people out there that are struggling. What you bring to everybody that you touched and the lives that you share and your experiences, it’s just so empowering for people to be around you. I know that there’s probably been some rough times along the way. Is there anything that you can recall or would like to share that didn’t necessarily go right and you wish you can go back and do over again?
I wouldn’t want to do it over again. But I am sitting in a room right now in a house that I bought when I was 29 years old. Now, I am not 29, I am 64. I’ve been in this house for a long time. It brings back a lot of memories. There was a time when I thought I was going to lose this house. I owned a company, started it with under a hundred dollars, expanded to fourteen western states in a matter of three years, had many, many employees who were doing pretty darn well. Then the whole thing started tumbling down. This I know was in 1985 because we were pregnant with my 30-year-old son. Put it all together and I was nervous. Plus we have had a couple of miscarriages and I couldn’t share my fears about my business, perhaps losing my business and home, with my wife, who was so pregnant.
Those were some tough times. It scared the hell out of me. It taught me some lessons. It taught me the power and the importance of mentorship. Because had I had a mentor, I would have sold that business for many millions of dollars, and I didn’t. Happily, I was able to sell that business to Bertelsmann who came in to the United States from Germany and bought Doubleday Books, Bantam Books, Dell Books, RCA Records, Arista Records and my company as well. Had I not sold the company, I would have lost it and I would have lost my house. I’ve had some interesting times and as I sit in this house now, there are a lot of memories of things and that’s one of them. That’s a big one.
That’s powerful for people to hear, and thank you for sharing that, because it’s so important for business owners to know that you are not alone. There are going to be some rough times. There are going to be some fears that come up. Knowing that they’ve got somebody that they can turn to for advice, getting a mentor, talking to you, having conversations that feel like you are not alone and you don’t have to do it by yourself. At the end of the day, it’s going to work itself out. It always does. That’s important to know and connect with people in that level to say, “Look, I’ve been there. We’ve all been afraid. Here’s how you move through it.” David, I know you’ve got a new book out. Can you tell us a little bit more about that?
My books have always done pretty well through the years, but this particular one has taken off faster than any other book I’ve ever put out there, but then again I held it back for a long time. I wrote it over a year ago and we just released it about three weeks ago. It’s called Preventing Brandslaughter. You have been in law and intelligence enforcement. You know that if somebody commits manslaughter, they’re going to be in trouble. I look at the brand as a living entity. You are either building your brand, feeding it, and growing it, or you are not. You are either in brand integrity or you’re outside of that brand integrity and you are committing brandslaughter in the first, second or third degree.
The brand has great value. In fact in Europe, they actually include the brand asset value into the bottom line. They are starting to do that in the United States as well. If you obliterate the brand, you’re stealing the company of money. When CEOs or owners or sole proprietors don’t understand what their brand is and they don’t know how it interacts with all of the touch points of the daily events of business, they can conceivably mishandle that brand. If Tonya Recla answers the phone in a hostile manner and your brand is that of caring and sharing. Let’s make believe you’re the CEO, you can go, “I didn’t do it. Tonya did it.” But the truth is, you are ultimately responsible, in this case, for brandslaughter in the second degree.
Bottom line is, in the book I teach how to do an ABI, happy which is an Audit of Brand Integrity, so that everyone in the organization does that audit and knows how and where that brand is alive in their daily activities. Then it breeds confidence. It also breeds brand asset value.
The analogy of manslaughter versus brandslaughter definitely paints a clear picture as to what you can do to your business if you are not paying attention. Especially the due diligence field, we’ve seen all levels of brandslaughter because people aren’t willing to be transparent. They are not willing to own up to it. Obviously, like you said, it comes and bites them in the butt. That can kill a company. David, where can people go to learn more about your book?
It’s on Amazon for $14. But for a short period of time, and I don’t know how long they are going to extend it, it is $0.99 for the eBook download. That’s not going to be that way forever, perhaps by the time people are listening to this. But it’s well worth the $14 or $15, believe me, because like you teach, it’s what you miss which will kick you in the butt. In this particular case, it’s what you miss in terms of sharing what your brand is and how it is, every aspect of your business, will kick you in the butt and they can undo you. Look at company’s like, and just name it. This week alone, Toyota, Volkswagen, Chipotle, their brand name is just going in the crappers.
I believe strongly in the message, otherwise I wouldn’t write it. I write books on things that are important to me. My book on health and vitality is going to be coming out. My book on values is coming out. My service book is out. My integrity book is out. It’s fun. I just write on what’s important to me.
We look forward to those new books coming out. David, in addition to checking out your profile inside the Clear Business Directory, where else can our audience find you?
It’s just DavidCorbin.com. I am so pleased that Forbes just did an article on me and I was just on Business Rockstars TV show and some other groovy stuff. If you type my name in there, happily, good stuff comes up.
David, thank you so much for being on the show today. We look forward to seeing you in the upcoming weeks. Until next time, make sure your business is in the clear.
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