Join host Dan McCormick as he interviews this week’s Greatest Salesman, John Haremza.
John is a network marketing veteran with over 30 years in the business and earnings in excess of $24 million. He achieved a new high of $4 million last year. His all-time proudest accomplishment has been leading his people to earnings of over $250 million and changing countless lives.
John’s story is a true rags-to-riches tale, going from a trailer park in a small town in Minnesota, to a world-class network marketing leader. His message is simple: “If I can do it with my challenges and background, then you can do it.” He is living proof that you can be successful in this business regardless of your education, age, race, background, or finances.
When he was introduced to network marketing, John was working as the maintenance manager in a local factory. He had never sold anything in his life and had no business experience. He has severe dyslexia which meant he could not read. Back then, he had one objective—to be invisible. He felt fortunate to get a high school diploma. Now, he is ranked in the top 50 worldwide in monthly earnings.
As John says, “Network marketing changed my life in ways that were far beyond my imagination.”
In his book he asks, “Are you doing this incredible business, Right or Almost Right?” He talks about the fine line between phenomenal success and average results in network marketing. His most recent book, “Network Marketing in the New World” talks about winning in todays’ changing world using digital marketing and social media. He talks about the incredible opportunities available to us in todays’ world. Right now it is available in digital format at his website.
John has been featured in multiple publications, called one of the top twenty-one marketing leaders in the world and inducted into the network marketing Hall of Fame. He is in demand as a speaker and has spoken to over 30,000 network marketers as a featured speaker on Eric Worres “Recruiting Challenge”.
John’s mission in life is to spread the message that “You can achieve your dream life; if I can do it with my severely inhibited background, then you too can do it.” So much of his experience is in his book, “Right or Almost Right” and into a set of four Passport Sized booklets that each focus on one key topic. His books and the booklets are available at John’s website ….. rightoralmostright.com
Listen to the podcast here:
The Rags-To-Riches Journey Of The Greatest Network Marketing Leader With John Haremza
It’s what we call Wisdom Wednesday here. I am honored to welcome into that chair that John Haremza is sitting in. We call him the Greatest Salesman in the world. I’ve known John for years. John, what I love to do when I start the show is welcome our first-timers. You can always go to TheGreatestSalesman.com to read previous shows. You can pull up the show on any of your favorite sites. Feel free to like and comment, share, review the show as we go. John, it is an honor. I know you’re busy. I see you everywhere. You’re writing books. You’re speaking on Zoom. You’re in virtual conferences. You have this unbelievable story that we’ll talk more about. I love to ask our guests. From a value proposition as we get started here, what are the three things that shape your life you feel or each day of your life?
Probably the first thing that is a huge part of my life, my daily activity, my focus, and that is personal development. I would not be where I am now without personal development. This whole business, our whole life is a mindset. The thing about personal development, too, is I tell people it’s like bathing. If you don’t do it every day, if you don’t do something to keep the proper mindset and grow personally, you’re going to get stinky or dirty like that person that doesn’t take a shower. Nobody wants to be around you. That’s number one.
This plays in part with that as well. Number two is I have a personal philosophy that I live by. I articulated it in my book, but I live it. I call it small stuff to the top. Never underestimate the impact of every decision you make, regardless of how small or insignificant it at the time. I can tell you a story about this. Us talking here, somebody tuning in, whatever we did earlier, everything we do, the decisions we make throughout our day make a huge difference on the outcome of our life and where we are in our life. My third one, as a core value, is I always do what I say. I don’t commit to things. I don’t say things unless I’m willing to follow through, even if I regret it at the time because I committed to it, I follow through. I don’t know if you’d call that my word. When I commit, when I tell I’m going to do something, I always will follow through with that.
Every week, I’m inspired by how people answer that question. Can you take us back? I’m thinking of that small town in Minnesota. Where was the inspiration? What was the first book maybe? What was somebody that was a mentor? Where did that number one of the three come from?
The number one of the three, I know exactly. I was still part-time. I was a maintenance person. I was working in a potato chip factory. I was up in the break room. I was living in a small town in Minnesota, about an hour and a half out of North Dakota out of Fargo. There was a big display ad in the Fargo form that said Zig Ziglar was coming to town. I talked about this and I remember the co-workers teasing me after the fact, “Did you ever see that Zig Zag guy?” You probably know the flea training story. That was the one thing I came out of that event with. It was all motivational and inspirational. As far as that one major takeaway was his flea training story.
He has some of the greatest. What I love about that guy is the animation when he tells us stories. The hands are moving. He is fired up.
The pump and the jack and the water well.
If anyone hasn’t watched Zig Ziglar on YouTube, go find some videos. You will love it. That’s a great story because we all have that place, that book. The journey is real. One of the great honors I have is to be here and interview the greatest salespeople in the world. It just so happened that the greatest secret was put in my hand. The Greatest Salesman is the book. The Greatest Secret is the journalized version.
I love scroll number seven because you’re sitting in the chair. He ends the scroll by saying, “I will be the greatest salesman the world has ever known.” You have had quite a career. You hit a level of success that is outrageous. I love how you say, “Small steps to the top.” I love how you validate it. You do what you say. Your team knows that about you. I wonder when you think about those small steps because everybody would look at you and say, “I wish I could be at the top with John and have those millions of dollars in income.”
I was going to tell you that story and now might be a good time. I am a maintenance person. I’m a blue-collar worker. I’m working in a factory. I started there right out of high school. I have a learning disability. I have dyslexia. I was that kid in school that sat in the back of the room. I went through high school trying to be invisible, not to be noticed, not to be called on, having to leave classes to the test read to me and all these special classes. I had no self-esteem, no self-confidence. I came right out of high school. I went to work at this potato chip factory.
A friend of mine invited me to someone’s home to look at a water filter and I thought they wanted me to build a display. The idea of selling something never in my wildest imagination ever entered my mind. The idea of talking to people was not something I was interested in. Here’s where the small step comes in. I’m invited to this home. There is a breakdown at the factory. I ended up having to stay late. I’d put in a ten-hour day in, maybe a twelve-hour day. I can’t remember exactly, but I was tired. I wanted to go home, sink into the couch, have something to eat, but I made a commitment to go to this home party and that was my introduction to the direct sales and network marketing industry.Never underestimate the impact of every decision you make, regardless of how small or insignificant it may appear. Click To Tweet
You think about that one little decision to go, follow through with my commitment versus go home. What I wanted to do is to go home and slouch into the couch after a long, hard day. That one decision changed the complete course of my life. You then think of the compounding effect of that one decision. Hundreds of thousands of people as a result of that little decision I made to go versus go home, not just changed my life but influenced the lives of 100,000 plus people.
In your bio, you mentioned that maybe more than $250 million in commissions for your teams that you’ve worked with.
Probably the total sales that I’ve generated in my years in the industry is something over $500 million. In most companies, if you look at it, about $250 million of that is paid in commissions.
I don’t think I’ve ever heard anybody say it quite that way that you did. First, personal development. Small steps. It’s like that little pebble that gets dropped into the water, there’s that little ripple. You did what you said. It’s amazing that somebody could say no to a phone call, somebody could say yes to the phone call and someone can show up at that Zig Ziglar meeting. The light can turn red on the way there and you don’t want to be late. You don’t want to see people. It’s interesting that you and I both had somewhat of a learning disability. I was always conscientious about my ADD. There was no ability to concentrate for periods of time. I couldn’t learn in school. You tried to disappear. I tried to make myself the center and the issue because I didn’t have that self-esteem. That’s an interesting compare and contrast. What was the first thing you ever saw? Was it the water purifier?
I went to this event. I was two hours late. I remember I showed up. I’m wearing a hairnet and I got protective goggles, a blue uniform, grease smelling like a potato chip because I worked in a potato chip factory. I remember coming in two hours late that the stain on what I termed as these two suits for Minneapolis. They had come down to give this presentation and they’re like, “We waited two hours for this guy.” There were five of us there that night and we’re all excited. The next morning, I was the only one left excited. There’s another little decision. All of those people are still my friends but their lives are much different than mine.
Here’s to your story and your question. I ended up buying four water filters that night. They’re $120 apiece, $480. That weekend, I went to a neighboring town and I knocked on doors. This is December of 1988 in Minnesota. We sold these things called a puppy dog approach. Leave it for a week, they fall in love with the great tasting water and wouldn’t want to give it up. I placed 3 of the 4 filters. I came back a week later and I brought my brother with me for moral support.
I had sold 1 of the 3 filters. I bought it for $120 and sold it for $179. I put $59 in my pocket. I looked at my brother and I’m like, “I’m going to be rich.” This was the easiest $59 I’ve ever made in my life. He wants to join me and I’m like, “I don’t know. I don’t want the competition.” All I could see was buying a filter and selling a filter. I thought, “Why would I want to recruit someone and create my own competition?” He’s my brother and I said, “I’m going to let you in on this but we need to make a pact between us. No one else is to know about this.” I entered the industry trying to keep it a secret.
I’m looking for the quote in the book because you said something that I thought was great. You said something and I count this as a quality amongst friends that I value. You said, “The others that came to the meeting didn’t sign up but they’re still friends.” That says a lot about you, John. Og says, when he’s telling the story with Hafid at the early stages of the book, “I always counted your friendship as my greatest asset.” I truly believe that while we might not recruit everybody or sell everybody, we certainly shouldn’t ever lose a friendship over it. I want you to comment on how you go about maintaining those relationships and friendships?
Number one is you don’t throw it in their face. There’s either a real relationship or there’s not and I’ve experienced both. I tend to have all real relationships and then I realize some of them weren’t real because of the way they react to the situation. This is true in our business because I’ve been with four companies over the years. I have people in all of those companies that I still communicate with, still call, great friends. Maybe we don’t talk all the time because of not working together but we’re still friends. There are others who I thought were friends that disown you. That’s not a real friend. This business is a relationship business. Life is about relationships.
If you know John Haremza, you know he’s a great guy, a great friend, a great leader. His book, Right or Almost Right. Is that your latest book?
My latest one is called Network Marketing in the New World. I’m embracing what’s happened in the world with the COVID situation. Right or Almost Right is a great book.
You’ve done a lot in that area. If anybody wants to see John’s writings and get those books, you can follow him on Facebook, John Haremza. You’ll see it right on the front of his page there. You can go to his web page, etc. I heard one time that everybody should do three things. You should have a child, plant a tree, and write a book. You might have all those done. What do you think?
You’ve got a fruitful life then according to that philosopher or whoever said that. Because of the difficulty of learning, when was the first time you heard about The Greatest Salesman? If you can recall maybe the first time you listened to it or tried to read it, how did you get the learning through your brain?
The title, The Greatest Salesman in the World, you hear about that and I know I’ve heard about it forever. I probably listened to it if it was on the audio way back when. I was not reintroduced to it until you reached out to me and we talked about doing this interview. I went and listened to it because I’m not a reader. I still don’t read well and I don’t retain when I do read. I listen. I do this a lot from a mindset standpoint, I go to sleep at night listening to stuff. I’m listening to the ten scrolls probably at least half a dozen times and I was listening to it again. I ended up waking up about 5:30 and put that on and listened for an hour.
It’s amazing when you hear a genuine, authentic voice like Og’s voice and you hear, “At the end of every dry desert, green grass grows.” I wonder, in the four companies you’ve been in, what was it like in some of those dry deserts?
Many times, you have to go through the desert because you can get to that green grass regardless. I am the person to stick it out as long as humanly possible until you have completely exhausted or your belief is completely gone then it may be time to move. That whole stopping three feet short of a gold mine, the W. Clement Stone story. For me, it’s a tremendous learning experience going through those deserts. If you haven’t been through that dry desert, you haven’t had much success. I promise you will go through the desert. It’s inevitable. Real leadership is demonstrated more in difficult times than in good times. It’s easy to be a leader when things are great. Real leadership is when you are going through the desert. You have to help people see that green grass on the other side because you believe it’s still there. You believe we’re going to find the grass. We’re going to make it to the other side.
I believe that this is the best of times. I believe that 2021 could be the largest year in the history of the direct selling world. We have many people connected now, Zoom, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, LinkedIn, you name it. Billions of people connected. Everybody reaching out and buying online. What is your vision of the future?
I’m 100% on board with you on that. Our world has changed, behaviors have changed, the way we do business. There’s going to be some businesses that will never come back. There are things that are ancient that will never come back. Because everybody knows Zoom, everybody is comfortable with this communication. I believe we’re going to have events again in our industry and we’ll have large events. There will be weekly events and that stuff. This is going to be the primary method. Zoom or some platform of that nature is going to be our future. The scare of the security that one thought they had in a small business that they thought they had in some rock-solid company that got turned upside down as a result of this has open minds up to look at the home-based business concept. You’re in the home-based business. I’m in the home-based business. Other than not traveling as we did, our lives haven’t been disrupted. We’re doing what we’re doing. We do it a little different way.
I had a gentleman on the show that I worked with back in the ‘90s, Ty Best. Ty said, “Dan, I’ve been living a quarantine life for 30 years doing network marketing.” It was the new technologies and so on. I love Fifita. “The dry desert,” she says, “It’s the thorn that pushes me through.” We get to welcome into that share that John Haremza is sitting in as The Greatest Salesperson in the World. John, we do a short little commercial on behalf of the Og Mandino company. We try to tell people, “Don’t just read the book but let’s measure those thoughts. Let’s challenge the brain.” It’s a mathematical equation but it is a magical experience once you take that HabitFinder.com/podcast. We all want that success. We all want to contribute more, to serve more, to earn more.
Certainly, we want to make sure that as Og says in scroll number nine, “I will act now.” It’s not about thinking and dreaming about making the millions and living in the paradise of Henderson, Nevada, John. I know you’ve been a new convert to the state of Nevada. I know that you took the assessment. We’re going to get your results. We need to get you queued up with one of our coaches here. I’m wondering when you were listening to those scrolls, was there anything that struck you from years ago to the present?
The first thing as I reviewed the results, the two simple exercises as I’m going through them, I’m saying to myself, “What is this going to tell me?” Moving to positive to what resonates with you and which doesn’t and then seeing the results and knowing all those categories, I can’t believe how this all made sense. Out of those two exercises, they were to get that data that completely resonated and made sense for me.Nobody fails. They only quit. Click To Tweet
When people take the assessment at HabitFinder.com/podcast, it’s a mind-bender. You simply say, “How is this going to tell me anything?” I say, “Trust it.” I’ve been doing it for years and I do it every year, a couple of times a year. My wife and I did it together. It’s quite a unique thing. When you go back to the scrolls and I think about Og coming on and writing the book, talking about, “Today, I begin a new life.” He’s coming from that paradigm of being an alcoholic. I think about scroll number two which is the one that probably lit me up after years in the industry. I wake up every morning thinking, “I will greet this day with love in my heart.” You listened to those scrolls over and over. Was there a scroll that touched you or it conceptually all flowed for you?
It was the third one, persistence.
“I will persist until I succeed.”
There’s nothing fancy about me but I step up to the plate every day and I keep swinging. I am in the trenches now like I was years ago when I started this and I keep doing it. That’s probably the one that resonated most with my success. You talked about greeting each day. I’m incredibly grateful for my life and the abundance that we have in this world. I want to help many people understand that they can win here. They can win if they believe a little bit. They’re consistent and focused. We can alter the way they think a little bit and get out of that victim mode and take responsibility for their life because I see it every day as you do. People are stuck. These types of teachings can completely change their life.
John mentioned how lives and businesses will forever be changed. The restaurant chains permanently closed in downtown Toronto. We offer new hope to all of those independent people, all of those small business people. We all have to have our own belief structure. You’re still in the trenches years later. You still do the same thing every single day. I want to quote Og here because, in that scroll that you’re quoting, he says, “I will remember the ancient law of averages and I will bend it to my good.” I’m like you. I’m not fancy but I show up every day. I keep making the calls every day. I keep reaching out. I keep texting. That’s how you and I circle back. We have a friend named Michael Monaco and he kept telling me about your success and I said, “I got to reach back out to John and congratulate him and put him in that chair.” It’s an awesome thing that you bring out for everybody to learn about. Because many millions of people have been displaced in their careers, they need you and me to find them.
You have to have that belief. We have something real to offer. Whatever the company, this industry of network marketing, home-based industry, as I go through it, I sit and I think, “Everyone should be doing this. They should be standing in line.” If I could take out of my head the picture or the vision I see and the power of this home-based industry, people should be standing in line to do what we do.
You struggle reading books and comprehending them. What is your favorite thing? Is it watching or is it listening to podcasts? Is it watching YouTube videos? What do you enjoy? How do you feel like you retain the most?
For me, it’s listening. I listen to the same stuff over and over. When you listen to something, things trigger and you fixate on them for a moment and then you go back months later or whatever and you listen to that same audio series and you pick something completely different. You’ve grown. You’re hearing it a little differently. Don’t stop. If you have something that resonates with you, keep listening, reading, watching, whatever you enjoy, whatever works for you best where you retain it and get it.
It harmonizes with what you picked out as your favorite scroll, “I will persist. I persist until.” It’s funny because until, that word showed up again for me. I was texting one of our previous guests that taught me about that, Justin Prince. I said, “That word until is a powerful thing. Persist until I succeed.” Og says it over and over and you say it over and over. Hopefully, our readers can glean some strength in staying consistent and continuing to persist until they succeed.
In closing, John, we’ve covered so much here. It’s awesome to have you. I know you’re a super busy guy. You got thousands of people. You got thousands of people you talk to every single week. You’re in front of lots and lots of people. Personal development is your number one thing. Number two, the small steps, which is brilliant. What Og is telling us out of the ten scrolls is a little bite every day, a few minutes every day and then do what you say. That means a lot. Your team must appreciate you putting that into text and contextualizing that for them. It’s a big deal to feel good about doing what you say.
They say that the definition of commitment is doing what you said you were going to do long after the feeling goes away when you said you were going to do it. We can all get excited about things and say we’re going to do something but the next morning, it’s a little bit more difficult. When you make that commitment or you make that declaration that you’re going to do something, for me, it was, “You’re going to see me at the top of the mountain.” Sometimes, I almost think I should go back and thank some of the negative people in my life for making the hair on the back of my neck stand up to persist beyond. People take that the other way. They get that negative input, those naysayers and then they listen to it. They let them get into their head and they quit. We talked about persistence. Nobody fails. They only quit. I don’t care what the business is. If you persist long enough, you’re going to learn, you’re going to grow and you’ll eventually get there. The only way you won’t is to quit.
That is full of wisdom right there. This is an honor for me to welcome you into The Greatest Salesman chair. I look forward to your success and share more about the journey and learn from you. He’s the author of Right or Almost Right. He’s the author of Network Marketing in the New World. It is fantastic that you take the time to put those things into print for the people on your path. I hope people will follow you on your Facebook page. I hope people will enjoy reading and taking notes. It’s an honor to have you.
I’ve got these little booklets, their passport size, on small steps. They’re little leather-bound like a passport, one on overcoming objections and one on mindset. My whole life revolves around mindset. That is network marketing. Why network marketing?
If I recall, I had something like that back in the day with Jim Rohn. I still have it in my closet somewhere, all those little passport-sized little booklets.
I have those same booklets. They’re all Jim Rohn quotes booklets. I love that booklet. Jim Rohn quotes unbelievable wisdom in every one of his quotes.
The quotes are unbelievable wisdom and the draw on his voice is even better. When you hear that voice, you know you’re hearing a voice of genuine authenticity.
That and Earl Nightingale. I’m listening to the scrolls on YouTube. The next two down was Earl Nightingale, Lead the Field. Also, one of the first sets of tapes I ever bought. It’s probably been years since I listened to that. I listened to that and was inspired by hearing his voice and the incredible wisdom that he has as well.
You’ve filled up our tanks, John. I’m thrilled that you could take the time to be with us, share your journey, your insights through your books, your quote books there and all this stuff. What an honor. If anybody is reading, whether it’s six days, six months or six years from now, you may hear us on Apple or iHeart, or Spotify. Who knows when and where? It’s an honor to be the ambassador to the Og Mandino company and welcome John Haremza as the greatest salesman in the world. I want to thank all of our readers. Thank you, John. Thank you and have the greatest day of your life. Bye.
- John Haremza
- The Greatest Salesman
- The Greatest Secret
- Right or Almost Right
- John Haremza – Facebook
- Ty Best – Past episode
- Justin Prince – Past episode
- Lead the Field – YouTube
- Apple – The Greatest Salesman in the World
- iHeart – The Greatest Salesman in the World
- Spotify – The Greatest Salesman in the World
About Johan Haremza
John Haremza is a network marketing veteran with over 30 years in the business and earnings in excess of $24 million. He achieved a new high of $4 million last year. His all-time proudest accomplishment has been leading his people to earnings of over $250 million and changing countless lives. John’s story is a true rags-to-riches tale, going from a trailer park in a small town in Minnesota, to a world-class network marketing leader. His message is simple: “If I can do it with my challenges and background, then you can do it.” He is living proof that you can be successful in this business regardless of your education, age, race, background, or finances. When he was introduced to network marketing, John was working as the maintenance manager in a local factory. He had never sold anything in his life and had no business experience. He has severe dyslexia which meant he could not read. Back then, he had one objective—to be invisible. He felt fortunate to get a high school diploma. and now he is ranked in the top 50 worldwide in monthly earnings. As John says, “Network marketing changed my life in ways that were far beyond my imagination.” In his book he asks, “are you doing this incredible business, Right or Almost Right”. He talks about the fine line between phenomenal success and average results in network marketing. His most recent book, “Network Marketing in the New World” talks about winning in todays’ changing world using digital marketing and social media. He talks about the incredible opportunities available to us in todays’ world. Right now it is available only in digital format at his website. John has been featured in multiple publications, called one of the top twenty-one marketing leaders in the world and inducted into the network marketing Hall of Fame. He is in demand as a speaker and has spoken to over 30,000 network marketers as a featured speaker on Eric Worres “Recruiting Challenge”.John’s mission in life is to spread the message that “you can achieve your dream life, if I can do it with my severely inhibited background, then you to can do it”. So much of his experience is in his book, “Right or Almost Right” and for the first time he is gifting it to the industry he loves!