July 2023 Newsletter Root for the underdog

Root for the underdog

I am the guy who roots for the underdog. No matter whether I’m watching an NCAA basketball tournament, a college football game between a high-ranking team and a lower-division team, or a professional football game, I love it when the underdog pulls out a win. When a highly favored team wins, that’s just a normal day at the office. However, when an underdog wins, I know that it could be a life-changing event for everyone involved… not just for the institution, the organization, or the school, but most of all for the individual players.



Never underestimate the…

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June 2023 Newsletter Mastering the fundamentals will bring success

Mastering the fundamentals will bring success

If you asked me to name just one reason I have been successful during my 40-year career, I would tell you it was because I mastered the fundamentals. (By the way, that is a never-ending journey.) I didn’t do anything fancy or rely on special software or technology. I just focused on the old-fashioned basics and fundamentals.



“Success is neither magical or mysterious. Success is the natural consequence of consistently applying the basic fundamentals.”

– Jim Rohn



When I started Deeb Realty (now Nebraska Realty) out of my 250-sq-ft basement, I focused on the core necessities of…

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May 2023 Newsletter You can make a difference

May 2023 Newsletter
You can make a difference

When somebody looks you in the eye and says, “You made a difference today,” how does it make you feel?


No matter how many times this has happened to me, I still get a lift from hearing that my words or actions had a positive impact on someone else. I believe that when we get up in the morning, one of our objectives should be to make a difference in someone’s life.


When you decide to make a difference, you are showing what is important to you. Most of the time it will mean making…

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April 2023 Newsletter A Leaders Mindset

A leader’s mindset

You don’t have to own a company, hold a management position, head an organization, or be a parent to have a leader’s mindset. Each of us can benefit from incorporating a leader’s attitude into everything we do. I believe having a leader’s mindset is a choice.


“Become the type of leader that people would follow voluntarily, even if you had no title or position.” – Brian Tracy

Having a leader’s mindset means you are always striving to be better. You are willing to make changes so you can become more effective in everything you do.


Being a leader is not…

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March 2023 Newsletter You can be The G.O.A.T.


YOU can be the G.O.A.T.
If you’re a sports fan, you know that “G.O.A.T.” means “Greatest Of All Time.” This category includes people like LeBron James, who broke the all-time scoring record in basketball, and Tom Brady, the greatest NFL quarterback in existence. But the G.O.A.T. concept also applies to high achievers in other fields. In the financial world, for example, Warren Buffett is a proven financial genius and true G.O.A.T. The list goes on and on.


My question is why not you? Why can’t you be the G.O.A.T.—the greatest of all time—at whatever you are doing? I’ll answer that question…

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February 2023 Newsletter The time is NOW

The time is NOW

“If not you, then who? And if not now, then when?”   


Most of my newsletters include those two questions, usually at the end. Today they are at the beginning because I want to focus on taking action NOW.


In all my years I do not recall ever seeing so much uncertainty in every aspect of life. As of the writing of this newsletter, we have already had around 40 mass shootings in the United States in 2023, and it’s less than five weeks into the new year. Our national debt is the highest it’s ever been. Some…

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January 2023 Newsletter Thank You


“Thank you.” This simple, two-word statement can have a tremendous impact on a person’s life. When you say “Thank you” or send someone a handwritten thank you note, it could be the best thing that happens to them all day.


I have been saying “please” and “thank you” throughout my life, so it comes naturally to me. I have said “Thank you” to all of my real estate clients over the past 40 years. If I did not thank them, why would they continue to refer me? The same goes for my clients during more than 20 years of motivational…

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December 2022 Newsletter Focus on Fun in 2023

Focus on fun in 2023
One thing all of us have in common is that we like to have fun. We need to do things that make us happy, whether that means going on vacation, getting together with friends and family, or doing our favorite hobby. My point is that we need to be able to look forward to doing something that is fun. It might happen tomorrow, next week, or maybe several months from now. Regardless, we need to feel excited about getting ready to do something fun in the future.


I have always described my idea of having fun…

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November 2022 Newsletter The truth will set you free

The truth will set you free

How many times have you heard someone say, ”The truth will set you free”? Probably more times than you could count. It’s even in the Bible! John 8:32 says, “Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” This statement is also commonly heard in academic settings.


When you hear “The truth will set you free,” what does it mean to you? It will most likely mean something different to each of us.


If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at will change


Today I would like…

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October 2022 Newsletter More compliments, please !

More compliments, please!

I am sure all of us have experienced problems with service over the last two or three years in just about every industry we encounter. I would put most of the blame on the pandemic, the labor shortage, and the lack of leadership in some companies. However, instead of dwelling on what has been missing, I want to focus on something positive: the wonderful people who are going above and beyond to provide excellent service.


Every day, people are working hard to make sure we have a great experience when we are buying something, no matter whether it…

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What People in the Audience are Saying…

With Van's passion, humor and experience you can be assured of one thing- your audience is going to get fired-up, built-up, and fully charged –up. As an entrepreneur at the top of his game Van is in the unique position of being able to "talk the talk" because he has "walked the walk". Over the years he has been a great inspiration to me and my staff. Van is a speaker with charisma, humility and impact and he's a difference maker in the lives of the people he touches…"

—George Akers // President, First Mortgage Corp.

I wanted to thank you for coming and speaking with our company today. I thought your presentation was awesome! I was really motivated and inspired by your thoughts and ideas. I will use this motivation to grow my business and my personal life.”

—Justin Pauls // Realtor, Tampa, Florida

We are delighted you will be accepting the award for Omaha’s Top 25 fastest growing companies. Congratulations on your outstanding growth and we wish you continued success.”

—Tracey Fortina // Omaha Chamber of Commerce

Thank you for running such a class act company. It is an honor and a pleasure to be associated with someone such as yourself. I know you are probably one of the most respected businessmen in the region.”

—Dustin Talacko // Realtor, Omaha, Nebraska

Congratulations on writing “Selling from the heart” and thank you for sharing a copy with me. Your class has been one of the most enjoyable classes I’ve ever taken. Your enthusiasm and passion for your work are awesome. But the most refreshing part of the class was your delightful sense of humor. Thank you again for being a fantastic teacher.”

—Linda Reismeiler // Student at Randall School of Real Estate, Omaha, Nebraska

Kudos to you, Van, for reaching a major goal. But more than that...For successfully building one of Omaha’s best companies from scratch and making it thrive even in less than ideal market conditions. You have realized the American Dream...And brought it home to many, many others. My best to you!”

—Todd Andrews, Anchor and Producer, KETV Omaha

Having you here again was such a blessing to so many! As I looked at the pictures, I could see just how interested each and every person was in what you had to say!

This has been such a gift to our agents when they need it the most. The fact that you come, you are so genuine and caring, you are so honest, you are not trying to sell anything and your passion to help each and every person believe in themselves and become the best they can be is HUGE! The timing is perfect for us all helping and caring about each other, so, thank YOU from the bottom of my heart for giving of yourself to help all of us!”

—Carolyn Summerton // First Mortgage Company of Idaho

I enjoyed your seminar and its focus. I was on the fence whether or not to attend and decided why not? I could have sat through an all day session if there was one, usually I end up at the seminars that start with a focus and quickly go astray. I found with yours time flew by too fast and it was already time to go but I wasn’t ready to go.”

—Scott Asbill, CDPE // Associate Broker, Realtor