EditorialsBy Matt Bud, Chairman, The FENG

From Jerry Mills, Founder & CEO of B2B CFO®, Jerry writes:


Matt Bud was kind enough to publish an article I wrote named Emotional Intelligence, on October 18, 2007. I want to thank the dozens of FENG members that wrote emails regarding the article. The emails came from as far away as Germany. Many of the comments were similar to the following:


“Thank you so much for forwarding your article on emotional intelligence. It came at a time when I needed it the most and am very grateful for the reminder. Normally I can overcome the negative and get back to the positive, but I was having a harder time with it this week. The frustration of job searching, going on interviews, and the lack of responses was getting to me. Thank heavens for people like you who pass on great information on such a timely basis. I have kept it and will look at it daily.”


As a reminder, the definition of Emotional Intelligence, Ron Willingham in his book, Integrity Selling for the 21st Century is as follows:


“It’s the ability to understand the emotions you’re feeling and their impact on your behaviors. It helps you identify fear of rejection, and its numerous emotional cousins, that if allowed to rule your actions, can kill your success. Emotional intelligence gives you the self-management skills to deal with negative emotions, natural resistance to change, fear of rejection, temporary defeats, and other success killers.


“It’s having the inner strength to do the necessary activities that you don’t want to do, but most do in order to be successful. It’s also the will power or emotional endurance to work through all the ups and downs that come your way.”


Let me tell you the brief story of a person that had good emotional intelligence. His name is Walt Disney, the creator of Disneyland.


My mother first took me to Disneyland in 1955, the year it opened. My wife, Christine and I have taken our children about a dozen times during the past two decades. She and I took a trip there last weekend. Just the two of us. Disneyland can be a romantic place for a couple, in spite of the thousands of hyperactive children. It’s fun to visit a place that claims to be the happiest place on the earth.


Walt Disney was born in humble circumstances in 1901. He had a talent for drawing and many dreams. He had numerous financial setbacks. The first company he created ended in bankruptcy. He obtained money from investors and produced Alice’s Wonderland. He would later say about the failure that he was “crushed at having failed and heartbroken at having disappointed so many who had trusted him and had lost money for their trust.”


He later formed Walt Disney Productions and began producing many films. It would take SEVENTEEN YEARS before that company started producing a profit.


Later, as a father, he was disappointed at the few places that he could take his children. He said, “You’ve got to have a place where the whole family can have fun.” He created the concept of Disneyland and set a goal to build the park.


He did not have the cash to build Disneyland but felt so compelled to create the project that he borrowed from his own funds. He borrowed against his life insurance policy and another $50,000 from a bank. He called the borrowing “the limit of my personal borrowing ability.” He started building the park and worked tirelessly to prepare for the opening day. He spent the entire night before the park’s opening day spray painting the giant rubber squid from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.


He was not prepared for the opening day. One reporter said of that day, “Walt’s dream is a nightmare” and called the opening “a fiasco the likes of which I cannot recall in thirty years of show life.” Some guests were disappointed to find that “the walkway in Tomorrowland ended abruptly in a field of dirt because Walt hadn’t had the funds or the time to complete the area.” Things got so confusing that some men that were hired to be security guards stopped Walt as he walked around the park and refused to let him go in certain areas of his own park.


Walt Disney is a great example of a person that had emotional intelligence. Many of us are now benefactors of his “self-management skills to deal with negative emotions, natural resistance to change, fear of rejection, temporary defeats, and other success killers.”


Let’s remember Walt Disney’s goal of having “a place where the whole family can have fun.” That goal gave him focus, caused him to go into personal debt and fueled his success.


Regarding your goals, let me ask you the following questions.


1. Do you have them written down?

2. Have you posted the goals where you can easily see them?

3. Do you review your goals when you become discouraged and have temporary setbacks?

4. What do you need to do to obtain the Emotional Intelligence to achieve your goals?


Let temporary setbacks be just that – temporary. That is what Walt Disney did.


Thank you.


Jerry L. Mills, CPA

Founder & CEO






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