Thank you everybody and welcome to Creative Live. I'm going to be talking today about how to become an influencer at work. This is a class that will put you firmly in control because the situations in life that are coming at you. You're reacting to it. You wish you could ever get in front of it. Well, this is the class that can help you to actually get in front of these circumstances because we are going to be talking about all kinds of fun things today that will help you to really learn strategic thinking. Strategic thinking is going to be for everybody, even those who may think that they're not naturally good at strategic thinking because it is a process and it is learnable. I'm gonna start with this quote by Denis Waitley. It says, "Everything is something you decide to do, "and there is really nothing you have to do." No matter where you are today it is a result, a direct result of every single decision you ever made. On whether they were good decisions or bad decisions, we're not ...
going to go into that. But, that is what has brought us here today. Today we are all at the exact same level because we are all here at the same time. So we're operating from the same set of knowledge and circumstances. What we're going to be covering here today is really what is it that you want to get out of becoming an influencer. Somebody who is an influencer has control over things, right? He gets to do what he wants to do. He can achieve a certain outcome or he can influence on how that outcome is going to be happening. But how do we even get there? It will give you an understanding of understanding basic strategy. The second thing is it will actually give you control. I'm gonna show you on how some of these-- You know, we always think that there's point A to point B and we're gonna, and this is it. I'm gonna tell you how the path really is going and then how you can influence the trajectory, which is a very difficult word for me to say, in a kind of a beneficial way. And then influencing also means that you want people to notice who you are in a good way, where it's like, "You know, what they're contributing "is really something we need to be paying attention to." And you want to influence people and put your career on the fast track. I'm gonna spend a couple moments on just telling you a little bit about myself and how I got to be sort of in this position where I have understood on what influence, you know what that sort of really means, because like many, many of our viewers my life isn't exactly that the princess woke up one day and a lot of great things happened and then one day she became queen. That would be a wonderful story, but it is nothing but. I'm a trained photographer. I'm originally from Germany. You will detect an accent. I had this idea of being a creative, but I found out pretty quickly that I was actually better at the business side behind it than be a creative. I understand creativity. I understand all the elements that go into it but for me I've always felt that the really power sort of was understanding on how sort of that back end kind of works. I became after I was a photographer and I realized that I'm really better at the business side, I became photo editor at Elle magazine in Germany which was phenomenal because I got to work with people like Helmut Newton and hert-brits and some of the big names in photography which was great fun. I immigrated to the United States, took a job at a artist representation agency, was laid off with a six months old child, had just been going through a divorce, a really horrible divorce from a very bad choice that I made but nevertheless I was determined. I went through what I call the decade of bad luck. You imagine it this way. Every time I got a little bit ahead somebody came with a big fat frying pan and you went like whoosh. Okay, and that was that and I was right back where I was and then I went a little bit ahead and then the frying pan came and it just kept going for 10 long years. It included me going through this horrible divorce and included a betrayal by a key employee in my company who had this great idea for a business which was my business just without me, and I sued them. I was in this awful lawsuit. Just as I think I'm getting out of the horrible lawsuit that cost me over a hundred thousand dollars to defend I get to be ready for production season. September 11th comes and in 24 hours, with the towers there goes my business. At this point anybody would have said there is no influence at work right here. This poor thing is out called, you know that's it, and I would have gone down in flames and everybody would have said, "Well, we totally understand why." But wait, there's more to the story. So, I said no, I am not going to be defined by my circumstances. I will be the one who will be defining the circumstances. I flew to Germany to drum up some business. My father had a stroke, but it wasn't a stroke. It's pancreatic cancer. Pancreatic cancer. He dies in only six weeks. If that wasn't enough we get served a notice while I'm at the funeral from the sleazy landlord who deserves every ounce of karma when it comes to him and here I am. I have no place. My best friend has died. I'm deep in debt. I have a brilliant idea but I really have nothing. Talk about a size of a frying pan. I don't think it gets any bigger than that. I had a little screaming match with God at that moment and asked to really help me figure out what the heck I was gonna do next. In the meantime, because I do believe that we have influence over every aspect of our circumstances I did the ultimate desperate measure. I wrote a letter to the President of the United States. That is pretty desperate if you ask me, because who the heck writes a letter to the President of the United States? Well, I did. I did it because my former mother-in-law just wouldn't-- She says you need to write the president. He's your president. He's the president to everybody. If the president, you know the president, the president-- The president can help you. Sure I just wrote the letter just so she was happy. I get a letter from the White House. It puts me in touch with the Small Business Administration and I was prepared because I wrote a business plan every night and every weekend. I walked in and I was completely ready. Then, when they were able to help me to underwrite my debt at the time, which was $135,000, I was able to really quickly get to break even. It was only three months to get to break even. 18 months later a Bill Gates company comes knocking at my door and says, "Hey, tell us how you do things." I said no. They said, "What does it take for you to tell us "how you do it?" I said, "You're gonna have to buy me," and they said, "Okay." I said, "I'm expensive." They said, "Fine." That is how I became a self made multimillionaire. The American dream-- My American dream is a far cry from how I started, on a futon on the floor with a $20 blanket and my fabulous $ 007 license plate car that you know I'm really kind of proud of. From there to there it goes. What did I figure out? I'm gonna show you on how to figure out yourself. I figured out how to take control over my circumstances and this is what we're going to be talking about today. Let me tell you just a little bit about the workbook. We're gonna get started now. I want you to go to page number two. Just take one moment and write down what do you want to get out of this workshop? And this workshop will be successful if I do what? Take a look at this.