A number of years ago I was able to work with ten high school students, five each from two local schools, helping them learn about leadership. As a part of the class, we took the students to interview an exceptional leader. A couple of past leaders that were interviewed were Tom Landry and Roger Staubach.
Another leader was Jim Sirbasku, President of Success Motivation, Inc. (SMI) located in Waco, Texas. In Jim’s younger life, he worked as a butcher in a meat packing plant in Minneapolis. The compensation for workers was very low.
Jim and his wife found that they could not have children so they decided to adopt a child. The adoption agency told them that they qualified for everything except income. They simply did not have enough income to support three people. Jim and his wife were devastated. What to do?
Jim knew a fellow who was marketing Goal Setting programs and Jim wanted one really bad. The fellow told him that if Jim would give him the names of some prospects and if they bought, he would give Jim 10% of the selling price. If the fellow sold ten programs to people from Jim’s referrals, Jim would get a program free. The fellow found that when he talked to the prospect that Jim provided, that they were already sold. He did not have to do any selling at all. So the fellow talked to Jim and convinced him to begin to sell as well and quit the meat packing plan.
Jim took that advice and to make a long story short, he quickly rose in the ranks and became the President of SMI.
I took the ten students to Waco to interview Jim and it was a great interview. The students had developed a set of questions that had been previously been sent to Jim. At one point in the interview, Jim got away from the questions and went over to a closet with bi-fold doors and opened them. Behind the doors was a large bookcase full of three ring notebooks. Jim told the students that all the notebooks were full of pages of goals accomplished. Jim said that he set goals in all areas of life and the six shelves were for the six areas of life. He related that anytime he is concerned about something, he looks at all the notebooks and reflects on all the goals accomplished. His thoughts are that if he has done all of this, what could he NOT do.
So the challenge for each of us is to think about our goals accomplished and do our own reflection. Begin to write each goal on a separate page and begin to collect those you complete. You might surprise yourself.
Jim died a multi-millionaire in 2010 at the age of 71. He and his wife Judy had two children, a boy and a girl. Their family had the largest Egyptian-Arabian horse farm in the world.