Ep. 219 – REAL Success Network COO, Stephen Fourie

Our guest today is COO Alliance member and COO of REAL Success Network, Stephen Fourie.

Stephen works closely with Brian Walsh to help elevate and grow the REAL Success Network internationally. Having run multiple businesses over the years, his own commitment to personal and professional mastery led him to the organization.

Under their combined leadership and complementary skills, REAL’s collective vision has positioned the company as a leading global authority on entrepreneurship, self-improvement, and continuous education. Powerful and humble, Stephen’s process-driven approach has helped systemize and scale the business globally while impacting the lives of millions. By striving for and encouraging the team to be better humans, he’s earned loyalty and trust attracting the highest quality people from around the world. 

In This Conversation We Discuss:

  • Where REAL Success Network finds their audience and how they target them 
  • The challenges COVID presented to their in-person events and how the online model changed the company 
  • Managing a team in different time zones
  • Stephen’s experience transitioning from entrepreneur to COO 
  • How the CEO and COO decided what their lanes in the business were going to be



Connect with Stephen Fourie: LinkedIn 

REAL Success Network – https://www.realsuccess.net

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In this episode, our guest is a COO Alliance member and the COO of the REAL Success Network, Stephen Fourie. He works closely with Brian Walsh to help elevate and grow the REAL Success Network internationally. Having run multiple businesses over the years, his commitment to personal and professional mastery led him to the organization.

Under their combined leadership and complementary skills, REAL’s collective vision has positioned the company as a leading global authority on entrepreneurship, self-improvement and continuous education. Powerful and humble, Stephen’s process-driven approach has helped systemize and scale the business globally while impacting the lives of millions. By striving for and encouraging the team to be better humans, he has earned loyalty and trust, attracting the highest quality people from around the world. Stephen, welcome to the show.

Thanks, Cameron. It is great to be here.

I’m looking forward to learning more about the business and you as well but above the REAL Success Network. I saw you on our COO Alliance call on our monthly call. I was like, “I don’t know him well.” Tell me a little bit about the business first and we will go back into some of Stephen. Give me more of a glimpse into what the REAL Success Network does. 

We got this focus or belief that everyone is capable of far more than what their life illustrates. We said about trying to help connect the best teachers and speakers in the world to people who don’t necessarily know them or have never been on a personal development journey, as well as those who are in that frame. We strongly believe in continuous educational self-improvement. We are on a mission to go and connect. We are trying to connect a million people on a personal development journey.

We run some of the largest online personal development seminars in the industry at the moment. We run large three-day summits where we have multiple speakers teaching on all sorts of topics from how to build your wealth, manage a business or improve your mindset. We got all topics that we cover around helping people get a breakthrough in various areas. It is about encouraging. One of the biggest things we do is reach new audiences and markets who have never taken a step in personal development. We help them connect on that journey, start learning more, become more of who they are and unleash what their potential could be.

When you mean new markets, do you mean geographic markets, demographic markets or economic markets?

We got a combination. We come from the background of running live physical events based in South Africa. We have run those for a long time. We started streaming online mostly for the South African context. Since COVID, we had to shift our whole business because we could no longer do that. We have expanded to being online and global. We have reached new markets in terms of geography. We got customers from about 197 different countries. We have had this massive global reach.

The other side of it is we are connecting speakers. We got a lot of speakers based in the UK who have always done a lot of work in the UK. We are able to connect people in the US, the Caribbean and Australia. We even had somebody from Antarctica on one of our calls. We are connecting audiences from different geographic areas to speakers and teachers who may never have heard of it before in different regions.

We got speakers and audiences from all over the world. We are reaching more people from different regions and bringing them all together. We have done a lot of polls at our summits. Most of the time, our audiences are about 80% of people who have never heard of that speaker before, involved in this amazing connection with these incredible teachers. We are reaching the audience in all aspects of that.

I love that you had a speaker from Antarctica. I was paid to speak while I was in Antarctica. It was the seventh continent that I have been paid to speak on. I spoke to a group of entrepreneurs while I was down there. It was fun. How is REAL Success Network make money? I understand the connecting of the speakers with the audiences and the move from being live events to online. I’m going to talk about that or ask about that in a second but how do you make money? 

We work off free summits. We have a lot of free events which attract people into the space. We work with some of our speakers and sell products. If you like to work further with them, they typically get an offer you can use to go and work with them. We facilitate that whole process. We add value. We bring the audience to the speakers. We run all the marketing, sales, customer service and backend stuff. Once a product has been purchased, we pass those leads on to the speaker. The way we make money on that is we do our revenue share model and off the back of that are additional commissions if there are upsells. We add value and take a revenue share by bringing that new audience to the speakers.

What percent are you taking, 30%, 50% or 10%? 

It varies, depending on the product but in the region of between 40% to 60%.

I have a couple of products. I have my Invest in Your Leaders course, which is a leadership development course to grow managers and leaders. It is being used by companies around the world. Would that be something that I would speak to an audience, teach them about stuff and say, “If you want more, you sign up for this course and I give you 50%?” Is that how it works? 

The way that might work in that case is we would put on a particular event for our audience. We bring an audience together. We put on an event with a couple of thousand people in the room. You would present add value. We run a free event. People must be able to walk away from their free event having received some value with something they can learn straight away. You would pitch the product. We facilitate the whole sale, keep a share of that revenue and pass that on to you.

Any additional upsell, for example, you got your Invest in Your Leaders course, you might do one-on-one coaching or something off the back of that. During your course, you might pitch a further or higher ticket model of a product where people want to work further and in more depth. We would take a commission on that as we brought you the lead but a much smaller commission.

I’m horrible at selling from the stage. I’m good at delivering content. I get a 9.73 average rating after doing almost 800 speaking events in 26 countries. I have a high rating and delivery but I’m terrible at selling anything from the stage. Do you guys work with the thought leaders to teach them how to do that or do you only work with thought leaders that naturally do that already? 

We have a combination. We got a whole speaker management team. We are close with our market analytics team on how we get the best results for the guys. We are working on bringing a high-quality audience but we are also working with each of the speakers to improve their conversion. If they sit in, we will look at all the stats afterward, try to help them and provide some advice. We have some experts that we know in the industry where we will say, “Speak with these guys. Work with them on improving the sale.” We also offer advice and stuff around how best to structure things and offer. We will work on putting a stack together. We will help them around that and build the whole funnel.

SIC 219 | REAL Success Network

REAL Success Network: We’re working on bringing high quality audience but we’re also working with each of the speakers to improve their conversion.


A lot of speakers we work with don’t have a funnel. They don’t have level 1, 2 and 3 products. We sometimes help them craft that and produce valuable sets they can take to the stage. You will help them increase those sales when they are speaking on stage because it is quite a different thing. We also noticed it is quite a different thing selling from stage versus setting on a webinar. We have translated those skills and added as much value as we can to help it because it is a win-win situation in that case.

I wouldn’t guess that Pete Vargas would be a competitor of yours. He would be in around your space working with speakers.

We would leverage whatever skills we can to help. Our speakers aren’t necessarily exclusive to us. Part of the reason they keep coming back to us is we try and make our company the best to work with from a speaker’s point of view. We connect them with a new audience. We are one of the biggest promoters in that space. We don’t necessarily have competition. We have to work with other promoters and people in that skillset because it has results all around.

Your speakers that are presenting are not being paid to speak for you. They are doing it because of the audience and the market you are bringing to them in the back end. 

It depends. We do have some speakers we have paid for. We might bring a headliner. We might be a headliner who attracts the audience. Sometimes we would pay them for that. Sometimes there is a bundled sale agreement where we recruit some funds. Typically, for a sales speaker, we wouldn’t pay them to be on a stage because they make that deal anyway.

You might pay Simon Sinek or Gary Vaynerchuk as the draw and other speakers are coming in because they know they got the market to sell to. 

In that context, we had some of the headliners. We work a lot with Les Brown, Mel Robbins, Robin Sharma and some big names in the industry. Those are our headliners. Some have products to sell and we will work with them around that but it depends.

Robin Sharma told me I was one of the best speakers he had ever seen. I understand the model. Where do you get your audiences from? Where do you find and market to these audiences? Are you buying traffic? Is it through promotion? Is it joint promotion with all these speakers, sharing with their list? How does that work? 

We have a combination but our primary channel at the moment is paid advertising. We run a lot of ads through Facebook to reach a lot of new audiences. That is from various regions. We got specific regions. We try and target. We work a lot with the US, Canada, the UK and Europe. Australia and New Zealand are the areas that are a little bit more challenging. We run most of our traffic through paid advertising.

We are working on building a partnerships team. We have worked with affiliates in the past. We are on a big drive at the moment to build big partner networks and work with that. We can put together quite an attractive deal for partners. We are on a big drive with that. We were aiming to have that to something about 30% for our bookings and everything to come through partners by the end of 2022. We are on a big drive there but at the moment, it is most pay debts.

What is the demographic? Who is showing up to you for most of your events? Is there most of your event’s category or do you cover single teenage girls to adults with kids to business owners? Do you have different categories? Are you broad in everybody showing up for every event thing like Tony Robbins might do?

We do have quite a broad audience from our initial summit. When we go to market, our main lead generators or revenue drivers are our summits. Those have a wide or broad audience appeal because we are covering many different topics. We typically target anywhere around the age of 30 and up. Within that, we have some specifics that we target but that is a general category. Anyone interested in improving their lives at the age of 30 up, some people will find value.

We got a whole community that we are building off the back of this. We already got over 10,000 members in that community and that is growing rapidly. Within that space, we are doing a lot more targeted stuff. We can have specific people who are interested in maybe wealth building. We got different channels and journeys around that. We are getting a bit more precise and targeted within our space. To bring people in front, it is a wide demographic.

What we have found is we used to do a lot of entrepreneurial stuff. I love that space. I love being in there and being able to add value there but it is a crowded space. Entrepreneurs are typically busy. Attending a three-day live online summit is sometimes a little challenging. We are getting good results out of having a broad approach from the start. From the age of 30 and up, it is people who are in the space willing to change and have the resources to do something about changing their life or the direction they want to pursue.

It makes sense on the entrepreneurial side. I want to back up a little bit. Years ago, you were an in-person events company. It is a similar model but focuses on South Africa. That is a big leap to go from South Africa. You are like Rodriguez all of a sudden. You are only known in South Africa for being a global phenom overnight. How did you transition from being this only in South Africa events? Were you only in South Africa events based? Did you do live events outside South Africa? 

I wasn’t technically part of the company back then. I was involved but I was doing some contracted software development for the business. It was towards the end of 2018. I got involved in doing some software development for the company to build out a sales management tool. Towards 2019, I got more involved. At the beginning of 2020, the company was still doing live events in South Africa. We put our big REAL Success Summit at the beginning of 2020 in January.

We had 3,000 to 4,000 people in the room but we were broadcasting online. We were streaming online on Zoom as well but we had small teams. We had 500 people on Zoom over the weekend. The company has been doing that for a long time, doing webinars and streaming. Every event we did was streaming. We have free events and a broad audience. We go into the February entrepreneur conference in 2020. It was the same format we would do in person and streaming online. I was still based in France but I traveled back to South Africa in January and February 2020 for our events and started seeing COVID starting to pop up. I saw it on the news and realized, “This is coming.”

At the end of March 2020, we got the news that South Africa was going into lockdown. We had to cancel or reschedule a whole lot of big events. We had already collected money for tickets. We panicked. We have been doing it so long online and our whole company was already working remotely so all our operations carried on the way they were and we switched to doing it on Zoom.

We started connecting with partners and everyone else as many people as we could. We put on a connection event. Everyone wants to connect. Everyone was sitting at home in lockdown. They don’t know what is happening. It is a scary situation. We said, “No sales. Just connect. Get in the groove.” A whole lot of teachers connect with us and jump on our summit. We ran that and it exploded. It has kept going from there. We were very fortunate to be in that position. The timing worked out well for us. We were able to cover it online and keep going with it.

For the COO Alliance, COVID was the best thing that could have happened. It did force us to recreate the model. We used to have 5 events per year and members picked 3 of the 5 events to come to. They paid $20,000 plus travel for 3 events. Now it is $8,900. It is all over Zoom. We got members from seventeen countries. It is seven times as many members as we had several years ago. We were like, “This is a whole new model.” Will you ever go back to the in-person events again or will you stay away from them? 

We are getting asked that a lot. We got customers from 197 countries. We were like, “Where do we start?” We love the online model because we can reach so many people and it is quite convenient. The outlay of having to run venues and all these things for our model is comfortable to run it online. We got to see what the market dictates. What I suspect will happen is we will end up planning. We want to do some in-person events but we want to try and run that off the back of our community wanting to connect and get together.

We may do some hybrid events. We are quite keen to do it. We had done it in the past when we had a physical event in 1 or 2 different cities. There is a small group of people in a room. We got 1 or 2 speakers on stage. You got the other streaming in on live video. That event was broadcast online to the rest of the audience. We will do something like that. We will see how it plays out. We were building a strong audience and communities in a few different cities. We could start putting some like that together in early 2023.

Where did you struggle in terms of making that pivot or change from offline business to online business? 

The biggest struggle was scaling up. We almost ended up breaking our systems. Everything happened so fast. We used to run a system with our webinars. It was great for 500 or 600 people. Suddenly, we are getting 4,000 people on it. It doesn’t cope with anything more than two hours. We struggled a lot to get our systems in order and do it quickly enough to cover the growth of the business. We grew fast. Going from a scrappy entrepreneurial space to starting to build out a bit more structure in order in the business, we make sure we are not dropping balls and having a consistent experience. Our biggest struggle was scaling the company up to be able to handle what was happening from an influx of sales and marketing.

SIC 219 | REAL Success Network

REAL Success Network: Our biggest struggle was scaling the company up to be able to handle what was happening from an influx of sales and marketing.


Where is your team? You were always a remote company. Are most of your teams in the African and European time zones? Do you have much of a team in North America? 

We are up to about 25 people at the moment. Most of them are based in and around Johannesburg in South Africa. Most of our team are in the same time zone but we got a couple of people in Cape Town and Durban. We do have a team in the US. We got a US-based customer service team based out of Seattle to cover the opposite time zones. We have some in Toronto and Serbia. We are a little bit spread out but the majority of our teams are in Johannesburg.

Is it true that hiring people in South Africa is cheaper than in North America? Is South Africa a 30% discount on North American pricing?

Probably more like 40%. There is a huge difference cost of living in South Africa, especially since I’m back in Europe. South Africa is much cheaper in many regards. It is on in some cases but your overall cost of living is cheaper than in most American cities. It is a bit of a challenge. For some of the guys in the COO Alliance, it seems difficult to find staff in the US. South Africa still has got a 35% unemployment rate. There is plenty of people looking. You can find some good people. You can pay them well in a South African context. It is on the cheaper side than hiring in the US.

The only issue with doing business with North America is the time zone issue. 

We got a lot of customers out of the US. There is a cultural difference. There’s a shared history and experience of life. It makes a difference when you are trying to connect well with customers. Our South African team does do well but there is a difference in ease and sometimes in language. There are other things to consider. We were chatting about that in our team meeting, talking about potential customer service expansion and where we start hiring.

I hired Elon Musk’s brother Kimbal in 1993. I also hired his cousin Peter Rive, who built SolarCity. Peter was a Canadian. He didn’t have the same accent that Kimbal had. I remember thinking Kimbal was so smart. I realized he was South African. It is amazing the accent. You could hire the dumbest guy in South Africa. If you got a South accent, you win. It is an amazing advantage you got over Canadians and Americans like me. Did I hear you say that you got into the business on the tech side and have moved into the operation side? 

That is right.

Walk me through that path because that is not a normal path to go through. 

I have run through the whole experience as a customer. I used to have a software development agency. I technically started that out of college as a side hustle. In 2010, I was running that full-time. For a couple of years, we were doing okay. It had some ups and downs. In some of the downs, I hear these things about you needing a mentor. I don’t even know where to look. I’m trying to do this on my own. I wasn’t getting anywhere.

My wife came across an ad for Brian Walsh, our CEO. He was putting on these events. I came across an ad for this free event. I was like, “I need a mentor.” This showed up. It seems like the right thing. I went to one of the events. I ended up getting into it. I was part of the membership program. I bought a ton of products. I was trying all the marketing and sales training, every different aspect of it. I ended up spending a lot of money on training courses. I ended, at the end of the year, around break even. Something was working. I was able to progress, find the money to spend on these courses and deliver on them. I got more into that and started coaching.

When our CEO launched a coaching program, I jumped on that. We were doing business coaching out of that for a couple of years. As that coaching relationship evolved, he was looking for someone to do the website with the tech side of things. I was running a software agency. We ended up changing from me being a coaching client to getting coaching, doing the website and getting paid for it. I got more involved from a tech side. He brought me full-time to build that and run a sales management platform.

My highest value is building businesses. I love business. I love trying to make stuff work, fix things and evolve this structure audit. When that project came to an end, I started poking around. I found some stuff I was able to jump in and fix. The relationship evolved. I got very involved in a lot of finance and operations. Naturally, it happened. When COVID came and we pivoted the business, we changed the business structure. That is when I got involved as a shareholder and COO. That was my path.

With the digital agency you were running, what was the size of that? 

We were a team of four. We were a small agency.

You were the entrepreneur. You were the one who started that and built it out. We were talking about this on our call for the COO Alliance. Have you done your Kolbe profile? Do you know what your four numbers are? 

I was looking at it. I haven’t spent too much time on the Kolbe. I know it is 7 and 2. I’m not sure what the other ones were. I have done the Kolbe profile. I don’t know if you know contribution compass or wealth dynamics. We work on something similar to a profiling tool to that. My national energy is creative but systems based.

The fact that you are a high first number means you ask a lot of questions. It is fact-finding to build up the systems. I’m curious what your number is and whether you have a very high third number or whether it is more medium-high. Most entrepreneurs have a high third number like 8, 9 or 10. I’m curious as to where you are. Tell me about the transition from when you were the entrepreneur to becoming the COO. What was that move like? 

One of the things I battled as an entrepreneur was that I wasn’t necessarily the ideas guy. Give me an idea and I will make it happen. I will run with it. I can come up with some ideas. Brian, our CEO, is the ideas guy. We found a good working model and partnership in that space because he got a big vision and ideas. I can take and translate that into a working business. We found a good fit in that space. I was missing from trying to do everything on my own as an entrepreneur. I have some ideas and will get them going. I get into the building of the operations and processes. I tend to shy away from the sales and marketing side. When we connect and work together in that space, it works well.

How did you and Brian divide and conquer? How did you guys decide who was going to manage, what your lanes were going to be and what his lanes were going to be? 

Brian would have the vision and idea. He focuses on the marketing side of things and making sure we are out there and getting the traffic and the revenue. I focus on the operations of building out the actual structure of the company. I’m putting the teams in place, managing the team and building customer service and finance. We had a natural split there. I want to run the business side and Brian was like, “I don’t need to run that.” We are happy with our separation of roles there. It works well.

It sounds like you had to deliver on the promises of the marketing guy. You are about 25 employees in 2022. What was the size when you joined? 

We are about eighteen. We managed to maintain that through COVID. We are hiring additional people. In 2021, we started adding more team members.

What is the vision for the company? How do you stay aligned with that? 

We got the goal of connecting a million people on learning journeys on a global basis. Brian and I have done a lot of work around what we want for ourselves and our vision. We are both quite keen on travel. We want to be able to travel the world and work remotely. That seemed quite well. We want to connect with people and connect people with teachers who can help them in their businesses and lives. We did a whole bunch of equations that we worked out, like what we wanted to build in terms of personal wealth.

SIC 219 | REAL Success Network

REAL Success Network: We just want to connect with people and then connect them with teachers who can help them in their business and their life.


REAL Success Network: We just want to connect with people and then connect them with teachers who can help them in their business and their life.[/caption]


I coincidentally landed at those numbers. If we did this for one million people, we would hit all our goals. We are focusing on building that out. We worked out like we carried on with the process. We are at the speed we have had over the last few years. It would take us about 62 years to get there. We know we want to grow the company and make a substantial increase in the impact that we make. We are going to keep holding on to that.

How do you shorten that 62-year time horizon and how do you make that faster? 

Elon Musk quoted, “Take your 10 plan and think about how you can do it in 6 months.” I keep joking that we can do it in three years. I say joking but I keep saying, “I’m sure we can do it in three years.” I get a lot of pushback. It is scaling what we are doing. We are online so the volume is getting advertising to work. As we scale up, we have doubled the revenue substantially from 2021 to 2022. We have doubled the size of our January 2022 events twice in a row. We are trying to keep on track with that.

There are a bunch of other things we are doing on the back with all the strong community around it. It is taking what is working and making it run like clockwork and scaling it up. In terms of shortening that time horizon, what we are looking at doing is taking what we are doing and scaling it up. It is a fine balance between increasing our ad spend and bringing in new leads. The backend systems don’t have to scale as much. We were looking at what is working and scaling that up and finding other channels to go to market through partners and affiliate networks.

We are pushing where we can scale those frontline numbers up. We are also bolding a massive community on the back of that. We are taking people through our initial summit process. We are doing a lot of work on connecting people to our community. We are adding a lot more value and context around that. That is going to build the backend side of things and work with all our speakers around producing better results through the whole process.

I’m being brought to Estonia to speak to a group called Mindvalley. Are they playing around your space at all in terms of the community component or the speakers? Do you know them?

What they built in their platform is a little similar to what we are doing in the community. There is some potential overlap. Our mainly different is our summits and big live events online. What we are doing is focusing a lot on what we are doing there. We are building a community around that. We are looking at how we improve the summit experience and how people get more value out of that. We are adding a ton of content and courses in the backend. It is not the same as Mindvalley. There is a separation in how we operate but there are awesome similarities and a little bit of overlap.

I like the fact that you are building the community and the courses. Are you building the courses for all of your thought leaders? Do you take the revenue share off those? Is that how that plays out? 

We don’t build the courses.

You might link to them. 

Yes, it will link through to them. We will often try and put a bundle. Where we also specialize is we try and put a bundle deal together. It is something you can get through us as you can’t get anywhere else. With the volume and scale we play at, we can try and work slightly different deals. If you are in our community space, we can offer slightly different compositions of products. We connect so many different teachers. There is some overlap we can play to strength.

We should sit and talk offline because there could be a good opportunity for us to do something with the Invest in Your Leaders course, where we give preferred pricing to all of the members of your community. We give a referral fee to you guys for being a partner. Talk about attracting all these people who aren’t paying anything. You are going to convert them into paying customers for all these other speakers. How do you work that? You know it is working because you are doing it but how do you do it? How do you make sure that it works? It seems like such a jump that I wouldn’t normally go after. I would rather go after somebody who at least pays $100 for that skin in the game. You are not worried about that. How does it work? 

I wouldn’t say we’re not worried about it. The challenge is it is a bit of a risky model. There is always a potential that we could go and spend a ton of money on advertising and nothing happens off the back of that. We do run a risk there. We have learned a lot in the years that we have been doing this around what we are willing to spend on leads, how that converse and where they come from. We do a lot of work around the analytics and the data behind all of that. If we pay X amount per lead, we know, on average, they will spend so much in a summit and what their backend looks like. We got a fairly predictable model around it.

What is different for us is because we built the predictability around it, we can take the risk and go to market for that and get a new audience that speakers would not necessarily have found otherwise. The model works for us in that context but that is where we specialize. We are able to do full summits and make it work. We have looked at doing paid events in the past and often that doesn’t quite pan out the way we want. We have managed to get a model that works well to attract them to full-free summits and turn those into paying clients. It is all about optimizing every step along the way to make sure we get the right show rates and conversion rates.

SIC 219 | REAL Success Network

REAL Success Network: It’s all about optimizing every step along the way to make sure that we’ve got the right show rates and the right conversion rates and all those things.


That is cool you have made that leap. You are making that connection for your clients and the speakers you are bringing in. For the last couple of questions, I want to know a little bit about your growth. Why did you join the COO Alliance? Where are you trying to focus your growth as a second command of a company? 

I started looking for resources that could help me do this role and what it is like to be a COO. It is a good question because there are so many different variations of what that job description looks like. There is no one fixed framework as to what a COO does. One of the things we have always been big on, like myself as well as in the business, is if we don’t know how to do something and we are not experts in that area, go and find an expert. Work with the coach and mentor.

We got an executive coach who is brilliant and whom we work with. I’ve got another executive coach I work with personally. I have worked with an accountability coach. When I saw this pop-up, I was like, “This is what I need to grow my knowledge in the area because this is a new role for me. I don’t know anyone around me who knows this role well. I go and learn for a bunch of people who are doing it.”

We have always been big on that. We were like, “Find the resource and the knowledge.” The amount of knowledge I have gained out of being in this membership for a short couple of months has been incredible. The people we can connect with have taken me to a much bigger level. I want to keep working on that.

Are you doing it with your employees? Are you looking to grow their skills or is it just you and Brian? 

We are trying to install that as a culture. We are building that a lot. For our whole marketing team, we got them all in a circle. We got different mentors in different areas. We try to encourage that every step of the way because it makes so much sense. We get more value out of our personal skills and we grow to deliver to the business.

I was coaching a client in Florida in the United States a few years ago. I coached them from about 40 people up to about 700 people. I taught them one of the skills in the Invest in Your Leaders course. When he went through it, he was like, “This is going to change the company.” I’m like, “No, it is not going to change the company at all. What will change the company is if you teach that skill to your 700 employees but the fact that you got better in it isn’t going to do anything.” 

Entrepreneurs are growing their skills but are not investing in their leaders. They are not trying to grow their managers and leaders. It is good that you are doing that across your organization. Let’s go back to the 22-year-old Stephen. You are playing rugby and getting started in your business career. What advice would you give yourself as a 22-year-old that you know to be true now but you wish you had known when you were 22? 

One of the biggest things would be to learn sales. Everything around that skill, being able to close a deal and having the confidence and talk to people would be one of the most useful skills I would want to learn earlier in my career.

It is one of those rare things that people in sales wish they understood the rest of the business world. People in the rest of the business world wish they understood sales. It is almost like the grass is always greener. Stephen Fourie, the COO of the REAL Success Network, I appreciate the time that you shared with us on the show. Thank you so much. 

Thanks so much, Cameron. It is great to be here.


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