Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Chester Elton: A Carrot a Day...

We recently sat down with Chester Elton, best-selling author of The Carrot Principle and sought-after international speaker. As one of the world’s leading experts in employee engagement, he’s just as excitable in conversation as he is on stage. Beyond his stage presence though is his story.

Chester is a faithful man. He believes in something bigger than himself and in the service of and for others. Faith, whether religious or not, has become an emerging theme in the success stories we’ve followed thus far. It makes sense when you think about it. Faith is the glue that bridges today's unknown to tomorrow's success.

He’s also family-oriented – another recurring theme. He considers himself “madly in love” with his wife and his boys “exceptional.” His parents were together for 65 years. In fact, he considers them his "first managers." In short, he comes from good family stock.

Chester keeps a detailed journal, so we know (or at least surmise) that he has healthy self-awareness... and discipline. And what does he use to write in those journals? Fountain pens – limited edition and rare. Why? They force him to think when he writes.

Of service, he says, “A life of service is a life well-spent." He even goes further to say, “Learn to serve people. When you do, it’s good for business (too).”

As for luck, he likes to quote Larry Bird, who said “The more I practice, the luckier I get” after having made a game winning shot from the floor, on his back, in a consequential playoff game. Chester does believe that hard work breeds luck.

When it comes to failure, Chester exposes his Canadian roots with a ski analogy: “If you’re not falling, you’re not skiing.” Chester's personal run-in with failure came in Hartford, CT where he worked in TV ad sales and where he “failed pretty spectacularly." Ultimately, he grew stronger as a people leader and is now a renowned expert of it and best-selling author because of it.

As his mom always told him, “It doesn’t matter how you start; it matters how you finish.”

Find out more about Chester and his success story in our audio interview...

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