Zig Ziglar: Dead at 86

BlogHer Original Post

The year 2012 has not been kind to our top business and motivational experts. First, Stephen Covey, and now Zig Ziglar.

According to CNN, he died Wednesday after a short bout with pneumonia.

Zig Ziglar

Credit Image: © Jason Moore/ZUMAPRESS.com

Ziglar built a motivational and personal growth empire. A consummate salesman, he was dedicated to helping people achieve success in their lives and careers. One of the most quotable leaders, even if you weren't aware of Ziglar, you likely heard his message. His philosophy focused on living a balanced life and leading with positivity.

Writing over two dozen books on sales and motivation over the last fifty years, he expanded his message in a way that anyone could benefit from. Whether you are an entrepreneur with direct impact on sales or an employee with an indirect role in a company's success, his teachings can help you succeed. Success Magazine interview has this to say about this transition and expansion of Ziglar's brand:

I asked Zig what caused him to make the transition from sales training to motivational speaking. His son Tom explained that Zig studied the success of his students, and he realized that only 20 percent of it was due to technique. The other 80 percent was due to reputation and character. So that’s when Zig began to focus on those issues and not just talk about selling.

Some tidbits about Ziglar from this article sum up his mission:

Ziglar started his fulltime career in motivational speaking when he was in his 40s. His first book, "See You at the Top," was published in 1975, when he was 49.

"He got saved at the age of 42, which means that he accepted Jesus Christ as his savior," Hellwig said. "Ever since that day is what he said was the turning point of his life."

"The last 41 years of his life he lived fully with that as his mission. He also had the uncanny ability to make everyone he ran into feel like they were his friend."

Small Business Trends has a nice roundup of tips for achievement from the man and his message.

Including this one from the NY Times:

Determine your altitude. As Ziglar said, “Attitude, not aptitude, determines altitude.” His philosophies on business and personal success put together might be described as Ziglar’s “personal brand”, developed way back in the 1950's before this term was in common use. At that time, Ziglar, a salesman, discovered that selling himself was the key to success and a 40 year career as a speaker and author. Your personal brand is a part of your business too. Think about the brand you project to customers. The New York Times.

As I was reflecting upon the loss of both Covey and Ziglar this year, something very important stood out as a lesson to heed. I found it interesting to note that both these men loved what they did, always kept learning and growing, stayed physically active, and died at a rich, old age and stayed vibrant and productive until the end. There Something to be said about THAT!

How can that piece of their legacies inform your own personal and professional path?

I leave you to reflect on that and enjoy this video from Ziglar on how attitude makes all the difference (and the importance of gratitude).


Paula Gregorowicz plucks women off the hamster wheel of overwhelm, struggle, and self-doubt and guides them to a purposeful path of building authentic and successful businesses.

Download the Free Report: Your Own Uniqueness: The Path to Purpose, Prosperity, and Playfulness at http://www.thepaulagcompany.com.

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