Personal development

Passion vs. Suffering by Sonny D


At your own risk.

At your own risk.


From the Trenches. I constantly hear people using the word passion and wanted to share some insights with you about the word itself.

Passion vs. Suffering 

Have you ever heard someone say "I'm so passionate about…. this or that"? Well what does passion really mean? I think the word passion has been misused. It's become a conversational piece and needs to be revisited. Historically speaking the word passion comes from the Latin verb patere or passiō, meaning to suffer. Today we apply it as a term to describe a very strong feeling about a person or thing. It's a bit of both I think, because if you really have that strong feeling about a person or thing then you're willing to suffer. When it comes to your chosen field of endeavor have you ever been told "find your passion and you'll be happy"? Well knowing what we know now about the origins of the word, another way to phrase that could be, What are you willing to suffer for until you're happy? Whatever that is, is where you'll find your REAL passion. I think passion is really an action not a noun. It's a demonstration not a conversation piece. Real passion will hurt and feel great, sometimes at the same time. Real passion will require fight, tenacity, resilience and the ability to endure long periods of suffering over long periods of time. Doesn't sound as sexy now, does it? For the select few who are willing to really BE passion, not just TALK passion, will find on the other side of the suffering awaits enormous amounts of victory, wealth, and joy. However very few will ever realize it because the alternatives that exist are too easy. Giving up, quitting, jumping ship, switching teams..etc., have all become acceptable actions today. So here's the question, is passion dead? I believe passion is alive, I believe passion is life and life my friends ain't easy, so neither am I. What about you, are you ready to suffer? Are you ready to BE passion? 

If so then remember it's about action. Now let's get back to building our empires. Talk to you soon!

How To Climb The Ladder Of Success by Sonny D

Greetings From The Trenches

So you want to score that dream job? Are you looking for your next promotion? Or do you just want to know what job security really is? If any of these questions resonates with you then you need this formula. The steps which I'll outline below have aided me in my journey up the ladder and I'm positive they'll do the same for you. In every scenario these are the key ingredients.


1. Be Money Motivated. Baby from YMCMB the Young Money camps home of hip hop artists like Lil' Wayne and Drake says it best in the song "We Alright" "... Yeah its money over everything, we motivated..." So what does that mean? It means that you need to recognize that money or revenue is the lifeblood of any organization and without it the business will cease to exist. You need to become money motivated. You need to know what activities are money producing and which ones are not. You need to study money and learn how to use it as a tool. Money is considered currency and just like any current it needs to stay in motion so it doesn't die or become stagnant like a still pond. When you are motivated there is a clear agenda behind what actions you take. That doesn't mean that some of the work you will do won't be "free". It may appear "free" but when you're money motivated you have a long term outlook about your efforts and the results they'll produce long term is money. Plenty of the actions that I take in my company on a daily basis are "non-paid" but money motivated. Whether I'm paid for a job has to do with salary, wage, or commission which is part of the trade off. The mindset of being money motivated can produce revenue for you, the company or other individuals by the value added to the organization.

problem solver

2. Be a problem solver. One of the most valuable assists on the planet are problem solvers. Every great business or person that exists is considered great because they solved problems. A lot of the times these problems were very complex and had chewed up and spit out people that came before them. Think Henry Ford, the Wright Brothers, or Thomas Edison's 10,000 attempts before he figured out the light bulb. The bigger the problem the greater the spoils. Every organization has complex problems the need solved. If you enter an organization with the mentality that you're there to solve them you will become indispensable. Go to the CEO of a company and ask them what keeps them up at night. Once you find that out go to work on it. When I look at the number of able bodied people that are unemployed or say they can't find work I think it's ridiculous. Every company is hiring problem solvers year round. Become one and you'll go to the top in whatever field you're in.


3. It's show not tell. When it comes to hustle lots of people like to talk about it. The real hustlers are to busy taking over the world. The question is which one are you? Over the years I've interviewed tons of people who say all the right things to try and get the job but then when it's time to roll up their sleeves and do the work it's a different story. What happens from the moment the words come out the mouth until "showtime". I think when people talk hustle they get a little dopamine hit and feel good but when it's go time the action that's involved paralyzes them. It's almost like the more hustle talk is done the less actual hustlin'. So be on the look out for the big game talkers. Look at your own levels of action as well, do you need a boost? In an organization the results are what's measured.  If you plan to move up the ladder then you need to produce. Massive action and massive hustle is what it's going to take. If you're gonna be a real hustler you can't get it done with what I call a "clock punching attitude". That's the person who once they punch out they're done working. Real hustlers aren't done until the jobs done. The cool thing about this ingredient is that you can develop the mindset of a hustler even if you don't naturally possess it. It's a muscle and like any other muscle it requires constant exercise to develop. Once your hustle muscle is ripped then you're primed for the climb.


4. Finders keepers. The final key ingredient for you to become the next hire, promoted person, or new cheif is your ability to find revenue around and in the organization. Remember we talked about the lifeblood of any company is money. Well revenue is the inflow of cash from the sales of products and services. Your job is to find missed revenue opportunities or ways to generate more revenue. That may be from new leads, dormant products or services or entering new sectors. As your looking to add value to an organization you can't be afraid to innovate. Do the things because that's the way they've always been done are the dying words of any business. You have to think different. When Steve Jobs and the team at Apple came up with the iPhone it was a result of this kind of thinking. There were plenty of people in the mobile phone space so to come in and take a piece of that business they knew was going to be extremely difficult but if executed correctly could produce a huge inflow of revenue. I think we can all agree they've done a pretty good job. Revenue is the name of the game and when trying to increase a companies revenue you have to innovate and be creative. Revenue is reflected on the scoreboard and if you're a scorer then you're a keeper. You have to be on constant offense if your gonna be successful in this area. 

So there you have it, that's the recipe. If you want to move to the top of your organization, want to secure your current position or just want to get a job practice these things well. Any company that's worth being a part of is looking for these skill sets in the people they are hiring. I'm looking forward to hearing about your results and seeing you at the top! 

Now let's get back to building our empires! Talk to you soon!

Is Loyalty DEAD? by Sonny D

Greetings from the trenches.


Do you believe that loyalty is dead? As I look across the landscape today its hard to tell. Whether its business, friendships, sports teams, politics it seems like we are in a nation of "fence sitters" and "I'm gonna stick my toe in it" mentalities. Where did we go wrong? Who betrayed who? When you are hit with over 3 million messages a day from different mediums, maybe it's all those distractions that cause people to change their minds? When I'm in different circles people always joke about having A.D.D (attention deficit disorder), but with all those distractions who wouldn't? I think we need to revisit LOYALTY in a big way! Here's a few items I think we need to adopt to move in that direction.


1. Develop a "burn the boats mentality". A story I heard once about Spanish conquistador Captain Hernan Cortés, who set out to conquer Mexico, as he was landing on the enemies land, grossly out numbered but determined to be victorious gave these orders to his crew.  Once they reached land he ordered them to light the boats on fire. He said "We either take the land or perish", as they charged forward. Demonstrating loyalty to his mission. What mission are you loyal to?

2. Give 120%. A lot of times we expect to get everything out of what we are doing before we give 120% of ourselves. If something isn't working out for you it's time to get real and face yourself in the mirror. Before you think about quitting or changing sides, ask yourself, have I given all that I can? This question if answered honestly can compel you to stay in the fight.

3. Recognize nothing good comes easy. From the outset recognize nothing good will be a cake walk. If you know it's going to be an uphill battle from the start, then when the going gets tough, you'll get going. Through the good and the bad. When you come out victorious, it'll be a sweet victory.


I want loyalty to be alive and well and I hope you do too. Hopefully it didn't die with Tony Soprano, the Godfather, Michael Jordan and Derek Jeter, a few characters who I think have demonstrated tremendous loyalty to their missions, teams, and causes. Demonstration of loyalty may be hard to find, but if you fully commit there's a future in it. Let not the bright and shiny object distract you. Stay Loyal my friends

Now let's get back to building our empires! Talk to you soon!

How to attract talent by Sonny D


The Great Divide: How to attract today's workforce.

From the trenches:

Greetings from the trenches. I wanted to share some insights with my community this week about what I refer to as the "Great Divide". As school is back in session and I have a little one just starting school, it reminded me of the growing population of the new workforce. New ones in means old ones are moving out into the world, into businesses like yours and mine. Hiring in today's environment is very different then it was 3, 5, or 10 years ago, isn't it? Which brings up the question, what's your strategy for attracting, training, and sustaining talent. The average age of the workforce is in a steep decline as more and more baby boomers are retiring and the next generation, the millenials are becoming the majority. Here are a few tips to assist you in the process:

1. Learn the language. Today's workforce communicates with a different language. You need to communicate in that language if you're ever going to reach them. Be where they are, places like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. In my company we use tools like these to communicate our initiatives, our marketing programs, team updates, and other company info. You can create private groups, and pages for communication. The days of bulletin boards and push pins are out- get more digital.


2. Fall in love with process. Let me dispel the myth that today's workforce is ADD, they are not. (Wait a minute, what was I saying...) Just kidding! However they are great at following processes. Whether "hard systems" or "soft systems" you can increase productivity up to 100% if you have them in place. No matter how big or small everything can be systemized. Think Starbucks, McDonalds, etc. they've been training this workforce for decades on how to reach an end result following a process. Without it you'll lose their attention and eventually lose them.

One of the great story tellers.

One of the great story tellers.

3. What's your story? Have a well crafted story about your company. Make sure you can articulate the vision, mission and values of your company. The workforce of today wants to know your company has a future and needs a glimpse of what that looks like. We are living in a noisy world where brands are constantly sharing their stories. Be compelling, the most interesting story wins. 

Hope these tips help. Now let's get back to building our empires. Talk to you soon!