Magazine article Ebony

Selling Success: Les Brown Says You, Too, Can "Have More and Achieve More."

Magazine article Ebony

Selling Success: Les Brown Says You, Too, Can "Have More and Achieve More."

Article excerpt

SELLING SUCCESS

The soft sounds of a Freddie Hubbard tape fill the room as the assembled adults sit anxiously awaiting Les Brown. They are eager but not quite sure what to expect from a man whose ability to articulate on just about anything has literally moved people and made him wealthy.

Known in professional circles as "The Motivator," Brown greets each participant warmly, putting the group at ease. What follows is an eight-hour session that at times takes on the aura of a Baptist revival. "I have a vision for a better future," he says as the group repeats each word earnestly. "And that future starts with me."

Brown, a 42-year-old Miami native who never attended college, has literally talked his way into the good life. Once a door-to-door salesman, a nightclub emcee, a radio personality, a community activist and an Ohio state representative, Brown has found his true calling in a $210 billion cottage industry - motivational speaking.

Now based in Detroit, Brown spends almost every waking minute motivating someone to become a better person. He is one of the nation's most prominent motivational speakers, holding his own among such nationally known celebrities in his field as the Rev. Robert Schuller and Dr. Norman Vincent Peale.

Brown earns as much as five-figure fees for lectures and conducting motivational training sessions for corporate executives. His clients include such major corporations as American Telephone and Telegraph, General Electric and Proctor & Gamble.

He also conducts a variety of seminars on relaxation, self-image building and time management. His tapes and videos address several topical subjects, including how to overcome procrastination and identifying and improving personal relationships.

With only four years of professional experience, he became the first Black to win the National Speakers Association's most coveted award, the Council of Peers Award for Excellence. …

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