239 “Handshakes and Smiles Can’t Be Outsourced” – Doug Sandler

Doug's Story and Relationship Building Tips:

  • How Doug Got Back on His Feet after a Relationship Failure
  • Get Back to the Human Element of Doing Business
  • Build Quality Relationship to Add to Your Bottom Line
  • “Handshakes and Smiles Can't Be Outsourced” 

Listen to ReLaunch Show on iPhone or Android App

More about our featured guest

With 30 years of industry experience Doug Sandler, also known as Mr. Nice Guy, understands the importance of building relationships, making connections and adding the human element back into business. Although very human friendly, Doug also understands the critical nature technology plays in building business as well. As a social media influencer with tens of thousands of readers, Doug writes for Huffington Post and has a book very soon to be released called Nice Guys Finish First. Positioned to be a #1 bestseller on Amazon even before release date, Doug's writing has virtually taken him all over the world right from his home in Rockville.  Doug shares his insights and gets personal with his program and you will discover how a major “relaunch” of Doug's life started this entire business and way of life.


Nice Guys Finish First

Full Transcript

[00:02] Joel: Welcome to ReLaunch, your daily dose of inspiring stories, fresh ideas, practical steps, and solutions. And you can think of this show as being your prescription for relaunching into the life and into the business that you love. And if you are a daily listener, welcome back and thank you for tuning in, and thank you for being involved in the before and the after show online conversations. And if you are new to this show, just know that you are among friends. Joining us today is author, Doug Sandler, and his book, “Nice Guys Finish First” is hot off the press today. And it's a guide book that will help you build meaningful win-win relationships and add the human element back into business. And he writes for the Huffington Post and he is affectionately known as Mr. Nice Guy. Of course, I'm talking about the amazing, Doug Sandler. Doug, welcome. This is the first time we have had you on ReLaunch, welcome.

[01:11] Doug: It's great, it's great to be here. I'm ready just, like a can opener. Just open me up and let me spill out all over the airwaves, I'm so ready for this.

[01:19] Joel: Absolutely…

[01:20] Doug: Therapy, your show is my therapy today.

[01:22] Joel: Congratulations, by the way. I know that feeling of releasing the book on Amazon and watching the numbers just trickle upward, getting closer and closer to that big number one which we are believing for, for you so…

[01:40] Doug: It's going there, it's going there man, it's going there, I know it.

[01:42] Joel: You bet, you bet. Alright Doug, so we've all been through numerous launches and relaunches in our life but gosh, how do we start talking about Doug's relaunch? And most importantly, we all wanna hear this story about how it became “Nice Guys Finish First”.

[02:01] Doug: Oh, and I have it, I know it, I can remember the day. It was October three years ago, so a little bit over three years ago. And I was at an event and I met someone that was… Somebody that actually was more ambitious and had more of a drive than actually I did. And she was wonderful and she made all sorts of… She was just so motivated that she inspired me to be a better me, and that was really the moment I knew my life was gonna change. I didn't know how but… Because I had just recently gotten out of a failed relationship. I didn't know how my life was gonna change but I knew somehow that this woman was gonna change my life, and she has and it's been amazing ever since.

[02:49] Joel: Now, tell me this, Doug. Tell me about how she inspired you to become a better you. Process that for a second, break this down. A lotta times when just having a heart to heart with someone. We talk about, or I talk about rather, becoming a more powerful version of yourself.

[03:11] Doug: Oh yeah. And that was totally it. I knew I had within me what I needed.

[03:17] Joel: Okay, how did you know that? Because I think we all struggle with that at some point, so you probably did at some point too because you were married earlier, and so…

[03:30] Doug: Right. And I had proven to myself earlier in my life, well in the beginning of my career. I would say in the early 90's, I had proven to myself that I could be a successful person. I was always that rookie of the year, I was always that guy making the most money out of the group of friends, I was always the one that was the most ambitious, the hardest working. I knew I had it within me but I somehow lost that spark. I don't know why. Sometimes it has to do with relationships that you're in and I feel like I'm a sensitive guy and I'm a guy that just tries to be a pleaser. And the problem was I was just not… I just lost it. And it came back, it came back three years ago. And there is, like I said, an October evening that I can remember having a heart to heart conversation with this woman just about my life and since then it's been amazing. I'm happy to be specific if you want about those things that I did in order to get beyond where I was. You tell me, you kinda help lead me here.

[04:32] Pei: Well, “I'm curious now. That evening, that conversation, it sounded like that's still so vivid in your mind right now. It's like it awakened something. You know it was there, you just kind of never able to release or express. So what was that in there?

[04:53] Doug: Well, involved in the conversation it was… The conversation was all about just happiness and the ability to find something that I wanna do with my life that will make me happy. And it's not just a career because if you're happy in your career and you're happy with your personal life you will make all the money in the world. If you're happy as a person and you're comfortable in your own skin, you're unstoppable. If you have a… Not depressed, but if you have a low self esteem and you feel like you're being held back, you'll blame anything other than just the situation. I just needed to move on and I was ready to move on, so my relaunch was ready to roll and I was that freight train that could not be stopped after that.

[05:43] Joel: So let me ask you this. Everything that you said is right on track as far as if you have low self esteem then you're gonna end up spiraling further downhill and things of that nature. But what helps you build yourself back up. Definitely, you had a healthy relationship. You moved into one. So that was actually helpful. But what, from a practical point, helped you rebuild your confidence, your faith in yourself, and just the belief that you were that freight train?

[06:19] Doug: Well, like I said earlier, I knew from the previous life that I had that I could be a successful person. And it wasn't until someone affirmed that. You know, you need, you can't do this by yourself. Life is not an individual game. It's a team sport. And you need all the cheerleaders that you can get. And I think along the way I just either stopped listening to cheerleaders. Maybe it was a little bit of self destruction. I don't know. Maybe because I was not happy with my personal life, it made it challenging for me professionally and I was just accepting mediocrity as a part of my life. I needed, I really badly wanted to get back in the game again. And, I turned 50 this year. And that to me was another one of those areas where you just say, “I want to be able to accomplish something in my life. Let's go, Doug. Let's go.”

[07:12] Joel: I gotcha. Very well said. So let's do this. Go ahead and help us understand why that book needed to be written, number one, and why you needed to be the guy that wrote it.

[07:25] Doug: Okay.

[07:26] Joel: Go ahead.

[07:26] Doug: So, Nice Guys Finish First is a book about, certainly there's a little bit of history about me and the reason why I do things the way that I do, but I think today in business, especially in America, maybe we'll call it just a United States issue, maybe. I don't know. But I can tell you that we have taken completely the human element out of business and technology has taken over. And, while technology is a great thing, I think too often we use it as something to stand behind and hide behind. Social media, and e mail, and all sorts of communications, even podcasts. We'll stand behind them sometimes. We might not get out there and do our job in really, really promoting the way we should which is eye to eye and handshake to handshake. So, I wrote the book as a result of too many people being too cut throat about business, too focused on technology, and I really wanted people to get back to some of the basics which are, you know… I wrote a blog called “Handshakes and Smiles Can't Be Outsourced.”

[08:34] Pei: I love that.

[08:36] Doug: We just got to make sure that we get back to the human element in business and I think that that vision of a nice guy, the guy walking up to your office that has no intention of being a sales guy but just wants to build a relationship. Relationship selling is so critical, and I think that too many organizations and too many people have gotten away from it. And I felt like it was my responsibility to share that story with people because that's really how I've led my whole life is through relationships.

[09:04] Joel: I love that. We're talking about relationships now, and one of the recordings that we had just earlier today, the expert talked about how we were now getting back to the roots of the way it used to be. And, you know, when we all lived in the little town of Bedrock, or wherever we used to live, you know, everybody knew everyone. And if you needed something done you either knew a guy that did it you knew a person that knew a person that knew a person. And if you had any problems or challenges with their product or service, well, you could just walk down the street and they'd take care of it. And then 100 years came and went, and all of a sudden that's gone. But, the good news is, according to the person that we talked to earlier today, is that it's now coming full circle and, guess what. Relationships are back. Go.

[09:59] Doug: Well, relationships are back. And what's so nice about it is social media does a great job of building the connection, that initial connection. But we've got to go beyond that. I have some amazing relationships on Twitter, and Facebook, and LinkedIn. It's incredible how many people we can… My relationship with Huffington Post came as result of just a tweet that I exchanged with somebody that happened to know Arianna Huffington, who read something that I wrote and decided that they wanted to hear my voice on Huffington Post. So without that connection that never would have happened. But, you need to go beyond just that. You need to then follow through. You need to put yourself in front of that person. You need to put a smile in front of that person. You need to contact eye to eye. You need to make sure you're building connections. It's not just about that initial touch. It's let's go beyond the touch and actually put rear ends in seats on airplanes and cars and go visit people, and enjoy conversation and a cup of coffee and get back to those basics just like you said, Joel.

[11:02] Pei: Absolutely. And I also realize there are many business owners that they feel like they want to start either coaching, or speaking, or some kind of service business, and they can get bogged down building online relationships. But sometimes all we have to do is step into the circle we already know and there are local people we can serve who we already know face to face as well.

[11:32] Joel: Yeah. Frankly, Doug, that is a mistake that I made as an entrepreneur. I fell into the web, if you will. All I needed was to grow my numbers and all I needed was more fans, and friends, and followers, and all that. And, yeah. A lot can be said for having a big social media footprint. But, you know what, if it's just People that you don't really know… It was a mistake that I made, let's just put it that way.

[12:06] Doug: Well, you gotta go beyond that. And you're right, you can't just build a list, and then… You're list is key. Without a list, you really don't have anything. And I think you said it perfectly well; you need that inner circle. That inner circle is where you start. Three years ago when I started building my list, that's pretty much what it came down to. And then, about a year and a half ago, when I really focused, when I knew that this book was gonna be written, I started focusing about a year and a half ago, in really bolstering and building my list. Because although, yeah, that inner circle is going to be the majority of my initial push, you gotta go beyond that, so I needed a big list. But without the relationships, there would be no inner circle, and you need that inner circle to get started. ‘Cause that's what's gonna build your confidence, that's what's gonna build your head, that's what's gonna build your business initially, and then beyond that is where the rest of those folks and the rest of that circle, those circles start to really come into play.

[13:00] Pei: Love it. So, Doug, since you are the expert here, let me just pick your brain. You said it yourself that you do recruit the list, and many of our listeners are launching a business based on their passion. And they, they can learn from you to build more face-to-face relationships, but when they have developed this list from internet… So, how do you, in your business, can further this relationship? What are a couple tips or steps that you take to further relationship with lists you do have?

[13:39] Doug: You gotta get beyond the initial contact. You're putting somebody's name on a list, John Smith on a list, it's gonna do you absolutely no good unless you get to know something about John Smith. So, I would say if there's any advice I could give to those folks that are building lists right now, go beyond just putting a name down in your database. Make a connection. I'd much rather have 50 solid connections than 5,000 connections that I've never had more than one line of initiation with.

[14:09] Joel: Okay, explain that for a minute, because I definitely am on board with you there on that, but that is a hard sell for some people to think about just having a small room of raving fans, as opposed to having a stadium full of just random contacts.

[14:29] Doug: Okay. Well, let's look at it this way; if I have 50 people in my inner circle, and when I say more than one contact, more than one line to it, just get a name on the list, I mean John Smith is contacting you, you guys have now a Twitter relationship, and he is following you, and you're following him, go beyond that. Find out a little bit about John Smith, look at his profile. Sometimes it's all that is required is looking at their profile and seeing that this John Smith, he's a fan of jogging. So, maybe I take a link off of the internet about a guy that just overcame all sorts of obstacles and ran a half marathon. I take that link, and I send it over to John Smith. And all the sudden now I have a little bit of a connection with John, he responds to me, maybe with another connection, and we just start building a relationship. It might all be through Twitter in the beginning, but it will develop beyond that.

[15:22] Doug: Then, we get to be friends on LinkedIn and sometimes over to Facebook. And maybe we have a connection that we didn't even realize we had, and maybe there's a cup of coffee involved if he's local. And if he's not, maybe it's a phone call. So, if you get to be friends with John Smith, and he becomes one of those 50, John Smith will now become an advocate and a cheerleader for you. So, when your book comes out, like my book is about to come out… When that book comes out, you now have John Smith and all of John Smiths' contacts in his inner circle, because John is invested in you, and he wants to help you. And that's the best type of cheerleader to have, is somebody that will help you, that will not just stand behind you and say, “Go, go, go,” but somebody will say “Go, go, go. Hey, come on in this direction, I will show you somebody that I think could help you.” That's how I've gotten to all of… Anywhere where I've been over the last few years was through, just amazing connections.

[16:12] Pei: Wow! Love it. And what a perfect example. Just yesterday I realized… This lady contacted us on our website, and we had a great conversation. As it turned out, we met on Twitter and after reading the profile, we end up actually living in the same city. So, check this out, goes to the same church…

[16:37] Doug: Wow!

[16:38] Pei: Different campus, so we actually never met each other, but…

[16:42] Doug: That's awesome. And you guys are great examples, because I think that we just met through Twitter. I believe that I responded to…

[16:51] Joel: It wouldn't surprise me a bit.

[16:53] Doug: Was it through Twitter or LinkedIn? I think it was… Was it twitter?

[16:56] Joel: Yeah, I think so.

[16:57] Doug: Yeah. So, through Twitter we met. I just happened to look at your profile. I saw that you had a show. I saw that your show was fairly new, I would say under a year old is fairly new. But you had this passion and this drive and you were so committed to it. I could tell, just from your Tweets in your profile that you were committed to it. And I, my feeling is, and my dad always use to say this to me, he says: “Dougie, when you're not around the heat, you will get cold. Stay around the heat and you'll stay hot.”


[17:26] Doug: So, I wanted to be around heat, and you guys, that day in my world, were my heat. You built me up. You don't even realize it, and you built me up. And then, I listened to one of your podcasts, and I said “This is a couple that I wanna connect with, and see if I can get involved and get on their show.” I sent you a Tweet, I Tweeted and now I'm here.

[17:47] Pei: What a perfect real life example. Thank you.

[17:50] Joel: That is, yeah. I really appreciate your time. Today talking with Doug Sandler. You can go to dougsandler.com, or the better place to go is the blog article that accompanies this episode, and we're going to have all of the links to the social media hotspots right there in the article. Plus the link, it releases today, his book “Nice Guys Finish First” and he is going to take us step by step through the process of building meaningful win-win quality relationships. Doug, Doug this has been a blast.

[18:31] Doug: Thanks Joel, thanks Pei. Thanks very much, you guys were wonderful, loved chatting. I'm happy to be here again once we go top seller, bestseller on the Amazon list, lets come back.

[18:40] Joel: Absolutely.

[18:40] Pei: Lets do it.

[18:42] Joel: You're welcome back here any time Doug, have a great day.

[18:44] Doug: You too.

[18:45] Joel: Bye-bye.

Follow Doug on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and visit his site.

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Joel Boggess

Keynote Speaker | Corporate Trainer | Award-winning podcaster I help teams ignite their courage, take bolder steps, and get greater results. Together, we create possibilities that bring empowerment, meaning, and financial impact.


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