George Foreman shares his life lessons

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Nigel Worrall & George Foreman

Nigel Worrall & George Foreman

It’s been a whirlwind few days and over the coming posts I’ll share some of what I’ve been up to. It started with a trip to a great marketing conference in Atlanta last week where I was fortunate to listen to and then meet former World Heavy Weight boxing champion George Foreman.

George is an amazing guy. Someone who has fought back from adversity and who defied the critics when in 1994 he became the oldest man to win the world heavy weight championship at the age of 45.

One of his comments was very revealing as he said ““Once a person gets some success, they are frightened to start up from the bottom again.” He then told the story of how he had been world heavy weight champion, Olympic champion and how when his boxing career finally came to an end how he was constantly told that he was too old to do anything else. He hadn’t saved any money and had ten hungry mouths to feed. “I’m broke and scared” he said but he also said “You’re never told too old to start again” and from that he started to rebuild his life.

He started doing some menial tasks to earn a few dollars and it wasn’t before long that the now well known “George Foreman” grill came along. The story is interesting in itself as the grill was almost called the Hulk Hogan grill. Apparently an agent had two products that needed endorsing; One was a grill and the other was a blender. Since Hogan wasn’t around when the call came in, George Foreman took the grill and Hogan got left with the blender that apparently made no money. George is one smart man and he worked extremely hard to sell the grill to stores and the public by doing public appearances, infomercials and simply by making sure everyone got to know about the “George Foreman grill”. Of course, his natural charisma and charm helped and today over 110 million of these grills have been sold.

So, this is the story of a man who never knew when he was beat and as he said “Success is a strange thing…it can make you arrogant or eager for more.” Well George is certainly not arrogant, I can vouch for that, and I guess it ultimately comes down to the drive in your heart when you believe in something. There’s a few lessons in George’s story for all of us and if ever you get a chance to hear the big man speak…make sure you take it.

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