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A fine line: Confident? Or just arrogant?

Top achievers are lifetime learners. We’re always reading books, journals and newsletters. We constantly listen to educational audios and watch videos. We invest time, money and energy to attend seminars, join mastermind groups of other top achievers and to hire the very best coaches.

That’s a big part of what separates us from those who just get by or struggle, financially and emotionally.
As the legendary college basketball coach John Wooden once said:

“It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.”

So, of course, there I was again last week, attending yet another multi-day seminar 1,800 miles from home.
And it was there that I witnessed an interesting situation, having to do with the fine line between being confident and acting arrogantly.

The former can be the key to attracting clients, but crossing the line to the latter can quickly lose them. Think about what you would do if you were the “expert” or the “prospect” in this situation…

About 100 of us attended this seminar. Many were new to my world of how to skyrocket one’s income and lifestyle with simple personal branding and direct response marketing, but several of us were attending mainly to connect with other top achievers.

On the second day of the seminar, the co-host of the seminar offered his fairly pricey “done-for-you” services to the attendees. I’ve known this expert, and can vouch for his expertise. He definitely knows how to get results – and quickly, which means that the rather substantial investment in his services can easily lead to a return of many times that amount.

So far, so good: By co-hosting the event and presenting from the stage, this service provider was positioned as a confident and competent expert.

After this expert explained his offer, a multimillionaire entrepreneur celebrity friend of mine – not at all new to making money, but completely new to “Information Marketing” – asked my opinion about whether or not she should take this expert up on his offer. After an extensive consultation that started with dinner that night and continued throughout the next day, we came to the conclusion that it would be a sound investment for her to invest in the “speed to market” that this expert’s services would afford her.

But then it happened…

On a break near the end of Day 3, I approached the expert in the back and suggested he talk to my multi-millionaire friend, congratulating him with the news that she wanted to become his newest client. He told me “I don’t know who you’re talking about.”

This surprised me, because I often host seminars with over 100 attendees, and I make it a point to meet everyone there. I was confused about why this co-host wouldn’t make such an effort, even though he had three full days to meet everyone, and especially since this particular potential prospect (a) was a celebrity, and (b) had attended this same seminar just a few months before.

Or, perhaps could he have simply been attempting to further position himself as confident expert who didn’t feel the need to woo any additional clients?

Then, when I offered to take him over and introduce him, he said “I’m going to stay right here. Tell her to come talk to me if she wants to.”

Again… More posturing and expert positioning, or was he starting to cross the line to arrogance?

I gave him the benefit of the doubt, and walked over to my friend and offered to introduce her to the expert. However, to my dismay, she responded that she had already spoken with him. She was shocked and appalled that he had said he didn’t know who she was – not just because she is a celebrity who has sold billions of dollars worth of products on TV, but also because she had just talked to him about becoming his client only about an hour earlier!

That’s when she decided she would no longer consider becoming his client, and asked me instead to recommend a different expert for her to hire and work with.

Now here’s my question to you…

Let’s say you were this co-host. You know that as part of your “expert” positioning, you want to remain in control and have clients come to you instead of you pursuing them.


Would you have made it a point to know someone who is a repeat attendee of your events, especially if she was a television celebrity, and especially if she had recently spoken to you about paying your sizeable fee to become a client of yours?

Or would you have acted the way this expert did, choosing to stay planted in your spot in the back of the room instead of walking 20 feet to approach a potential client, and also claiming that you didn’t even know who she was, even though you had spoken to her only about an hour before?

Also: What if you were the prospect? Would you still have hired this expert after this treatment? After all, he is still extremely good at what he does, and could still help you make a lot of money.
I’d love to read your answers in a comment below.

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