December 2019 newsletter ….You create your own opportunity

                                You create your own opportunity


Nothing happens without opportunity. Think about it: from the second you wake up in the morning until the second you close your eyes at night, all of the time in between is filled with potential opportunity. However, you need to be on the lookout for ways to make good things happen.

If you don’t wake up with the mindset that today you are going to create opportunity, no one else is going to do it for you. I created my own opportunities starting at a very young age. If I wanted something that cost money, I mowed yards and shoveled driveways to earn the money I needed. Thankfully, there were people on my block who gave me those opportunities.


Opportunities are usually disguised as hard work, so most people don’t recognize them.” Ann Landers


Throughout my adult life (and I’m using the word adult loosely), I have had to do the same thing. When you are building a business, a sales career, or your leadership skills, you have to recognize every opportunity that could help you get there. If you have the attitude that NOTHING should be given to you unless you deserve it or earn it, then your automatic default will be to create opportunity.


“A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” – Winston Churchill


Look at your life as if each day is a gift, because you have been given the gift of being alive. Think about that for a minute. No matter whether you are 18 or 80, every day is a gift… period. What are you going to do with your gift? What do you want out of life? You have an opportunity to make it happen if you make your mind up that you will take the necessary steps toward your goal. I could give you hundreds of ways to create opportunity; however, out of respect for your time I will offer just a few:

  • Start each day by making a spoken commitment to yourself. Look in the mirror and say out loud, “Today I will have an open mind to new opportunities to better myself and my career.” This affirmation will open the door for good things to come into your life.
  • Step outside your comfort zone. For example, attend a networking event that you normally wouldn’t consider. You might say hello to several people; however, just meeting one person that you connect with could develop into an opportunity for you.
  • Use a personal touch in reaching out to others. Send out five handwritten notes each day to people you recently met, past clients, prospective customers, or anyone who could use some encouragement. Sending a handwritten note is so unusual that it will separate you from the pack. When you refuse to be like everyone else in your industry, your uniqueness will create opportunities that are endless. It sure did for me.
  • Offer more value in everything you do. In my speaking and real estate career I strive every day to offer more value. That might mean that you under promise and over deliver or that you take an extra step to make sure your client is receiving unmatched service. If you take the time to think about it, you can find plenty of ways to bring value to people that you do business with. Bringing value to others will create more opportunity.
  • As I talk about in my book The Power of Asking, when you learn how to ask people to do business with you and fully understand the benefits that asking will bring you, then you will create more opportunity than you know what to do with. Ask for an opportunity every chance you get.

Each of us are in the driver’s seat of our life, and  we are in control of our destiny ONLY if we seek out opportunities to move forward. We will not get unlimited chances to have the things we want.


Nothing is worse than missing an opportunity that could have changed your life. God will supply us with the opportunity, but it’s up to us to do something with it. Every experience is an opportunity to learn and grow, and the bigger the challenge we face, the bigger the opportunity for growth.

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


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