Preamble with Corey……
“Brad Sugars is one of the longest standing, most influential business coaches in the world. I first attended one of his seminars in around 2001-2002 in Sydney Australia, and quite frankly it changed my thinking forever.
I went on to read every book he’s written, and have followed his progress and that of his company, ActionCoach, ever since.
I’m delighted that he agreed to this interview! Enjoy, and if you have any comments, please do share them with us” Corey Hinde
Corey Hinde: Going right back to those early days… you seemed very unusual to me in that you were an accountant with a very entrepreneurial spirit that quite frankly, I’d never seen before. What was your turning point? When did you realise that you were different?
Brad Sugars: My dad decided that I was going to be a businessman when he found me selling my Christmas presents to my brothers when I was seven. The following year I discovered I could rent my toys for a few days. I got money and the toys came back. I guess looking back I was more interested in business and money rather than just getting a job.
CH: Who were your business influences back then that formed or helped form your thinking?
BS: While I quote and note Jim Rohn as one of my early mentors, the list of those who have inspired me and helped me develop my philosophies is too long for this format. Stephen Covey, Al Ries and Jack Trout, Sir Richard Branson, Jack Collins, Kenneth Blanchard, John Caples and many others have helped shaped my path.
Because I am always reading, consuming and learning, the list never ends. Many of my mentors have become peers and I am always looking for new inspiration and knowledge.
CH: At the seminar I attended, I was one of the only people that took your advice and raised the prices in my business at that time by 10%, then came back the year after and raised my hand to say I had done that. Seems a lot of people are scared to take action, even when they know the advice is sound. Why do you think this is?
BS: Fear. Risk aversion. Lack of confidence. All of these keep people from realizing their full potential. They don’t truly believe they can succeed and are not in a mindset to position them to make bold choices to change their trajectory.
CH: I’ve seen many business coaching businesses pop up, then disappear. I’ve also seen ActionCOACH go from strength to strength, and last the distance. Why do you think you guys have thrived whereas others have not?
BS: ActionCOACH focuses on fundamentals not fads. The business is founded on 14 principals and a vision that has never wavered “World abundance through business re-education.”
The company is focused and provides a service that addresses real needs and solves real problems. Our Coaches are well trained and constantly coached so they can deliver the proven and tested solutions we offer more effectively. We don’t buy into trends or radical ideas. We use easy to understand language and build relationships for the long-term.
CH: Some of my business heroes have been pretty prolific with their book writing and content creation. You seem to have taken that a step further. People can find your books, and see you live on Social Media every day. How important is content creation to brand Brad and brand ActionCOACH?
BS: Providing relevant and updated content is king for any brand. What I try to do is reinforce the books I write with small subject matter snippets and videos that bring topics back top of mind.
Having a consistent presence and offering practical and digestible content makes people want to learn more and then buy books and attend seminars. Also since people need to be exposed to a message several times before they act, repetition is not a bad thing. A topic like sales has many aspects so you can develop content on several areas under one general principal.
CH: Are you still buying businesses yourself and improving the business systems to then sell for a profit?
BS: I am always looking for investments. This is something that is a natural course of business for me. It never ends. Whether I actively seek out an investment or someone brings me an opportunity, I always look at the long-term potential and salability of the business in the future as considerations.
CH: From memory, you started out in Brisbane, and now reside in Las Vegas. That’s a big change in lifestyle (I think?). Is Vegas your forever home?
BS: Who knows where life will take anyone and forever is a long time. For now my life is centered in Las Vegas as my kids grow and move on to college and beyond, the possibilities are endless for the future.
CH: So you’ve been across many businesses around the world, I know you have coaches worldwide. What are some key things you still see all these years later that business owners do poorly and should focus on far earlier in their journey?
BS: Business owners fail to work ON their business and get trapped working IN their business. Delegation and building a team which can operate independently is difficult for most business owners. That is why hiring a coach is imperative.
CH: In my experience, many small business owners aren’t naturally strong with finance. Do you think it’s the nature of who is attracted to small business or is there a gap in access to training and mentorship?
BS: People who start businesses do so because they have a passion for something. A great hairstylist decides to open a salon, an accomplished chef opens a restaurant. But these people don’t have the general knowledge in business they need to actually make it successful. They know about doing great hair or creating a new dish, but they don’t know the first thing about managing people, or instituting systems and processes to ensure their organizations are positioned to grow. They aren’t generalist and often are so caught up in the day-to-day management that they can’t assess the opportunities and challenges. Small business owners know they aren’t good with finance and don’t have a law degree so they get an accountant, financial advisor and lawyer. But rarely do the get a business advisor, a coach, to help them see their business from another and more objective prospective. I believe every small to medium size business needs a coach to help keep owners accountable and focused.
CH: Someone is starting out in business today, what would be some books you’d highly recommend they read and implement? Feel free to list your own books!
BS: Well start with my Original Instant Series which includes Instant Leads, Cashflow, Profit, Promotions, Repeat Business, Team Building, Systems, Referrals, Advertising, Billionaire in Training, The Business Coach, The Real Estate Coach The Wealth Coach, Buying Customers 2.0 and my newest best-seller Pulling Profits out of Hat. Then add some of the classics, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey, Good to Great by Jim Collins. Don’t stop there! I read at least one book a week. Today it is super easy to keep adding to knowledge, at any given time I have three audible books going. I listen to a bit of all them daily to find inspiration and keep me questioning and learning.
CH: What’s next for Brad Sugars and ActionCOACH? What’s the dream?
BS: ActionCOACH will continue to grow and our goal of having 2020 Coaches worldwide by 2020 is within reach. We want to have firms and coaches thriving and changing lives of business owners globally. Brad Sugars, will see a lot growth in the coming months. First with the launch of 30x Business, 30x Life and 30x Wealth and then with a whole host of new products, workshops and seminars to help people achieve the wealth and success they have always dream of. We will be expanding BIZ X, a conference, networking event and awards gala globally and domestically to give business-minded people a one-stop, all-inclusive event to kick-start their business or propel them toward their own entrepreneurial journey.
CH: Lastly, where should people follow you and your amazing energy?
BS: Social media makes it super easy to stay up-to-date with me and ActionCOACH. I go live on Facebook almost daily on my Drive Time Video series and my team puts out a ton of content; guides, checklists, whitepaper etc..