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Creating and Maintaining Relationships with Dave Meltzer

In this episode, you're going to hear from Dave Meltzer. Dave is the CEO of Sports 1 Marketing and S1 Media House. It’s one of the world's leading sports and entertainment marketing agencies, which he co-founded with Hall of Fame quarterback Warren Moon.

Dave Meltzer has an amazing story, an amazing journey of how he's reinvented and transformed himself. If you see his show out there or if you see him on Instagram, he's active there. You will see that he runs with a lot of incredibly successful folks in all different industries and arenas, especially in sports.

In this episode, we talk about Dave's counterintuitive advice on negotiation. Dave was the former CEO of Leigh Steinberg. He's the guy that they made the movie Jerry Maguire based on. He was his CEO. They've done over $2 billion in negotiations and contracts. Dave has some great advice on how they were able to negotiate that.

You also are going to discover how to create and maintain relationships. People covet Dave's Rolodex. How does he create, but not only that, how does he nurture these relationships? You’re going to discover that.

Finally, we talk about a turning point moment in his life where it all changed. Where I believe the path of his life was radically shifted by making the right decision at that moment ending up to where he is now.

Dustin
I’m here with Dave Meltzer, the CEO of Sports 1 Marketing. He’s a guy that needs no introduction.
Dave
My favorite introduction is the CEO who travels around the world helping people.
Dustin
I read the book and there was a fascinating story that I wanted to pull out and it goes like this. You attended the Emmy’s. You’re on cloud nine. You've been partying with celebs, athletes, entertainers including rapper Lil Jon. You're on top of the world, but the party's done. You got to go back home to your wife, Julie. Why is this a turning point moment in your life?
Dave
I was lost in ego that I thought everything, and everyone was okay and that my money could buy love and happiness. My wife and my mom mean everything to me. It was the first time that my wife had ever told me literally that she was unhappy. I couldn't imagine why. We had a live-in nanny, a big home, cars, trips, everything. It went right through to my soul and I started realizing. She told me I better take stock in who I was or what I want to become, or she was leaving. It was a shocker to me.
Dustin
When you look back now, do you think that was one of those pivotal moments of your life? You obviously made the right decision, but do you attribute that to one of your top three moments in life?
Dave
Absolutely, that’s the best thing that has ever happened to me. That helped me to admit that I went bankrupt two years later after my wife warned me. Meaning we were not on the right track and I had already set the causes in place. They were significant things, not quite up to the birth of my children but they're up there. My mom and my wife in so many ways saved my life.
Dustin
Dave, I want to acknowledge you because you're unabashedly spiritual. You come from a world that I perceive to be scarce. People could look at you and say, “You're soft,” or, “This is a weakness,” or, “He's too emotional.” How do you continue to thrive in a world that maybe doesn't find this favorable?
Dave
One of my mentors of Leigh Steinberg was very much the same way. What he did was he put all his faith in his intellect, his intelligence and his goodness. My book, Connected To Goodness, came from that title. Have faith in what you want and more of it will come. I wanted to please everybody for so long. The irony is I then ended up in the highest level of the most competitive, scarce, ridiculous industry. That is where I found myself. Ironically, there's a huge need. People want to hear me. People want to live in a certain way and to them, I’m refreshing and fulfilling to them and there's nothing to attack. I don't leave them anything to attack.
Dustin
You mentioned Leigh and my understanding is you guys had your hand in over $2 billion worth of contract negotiations and deals. What are your top counterintuitive tips when it comes to negotiation?
Dave
Let me give you the three most counterintuitive. Always be fair, never negotiate to the last penny, and don't do business with idiots. If you think that would leave you no one to do business with in my industry of sports and entertainment, it's not true. It leaves you about 90% of the people. Sometimes I say, “You have the ability to show your light, you liberate others to show theirs.” That's exactly when I started learning was by liberating others out of fairness, out of non-negotiation. I have shifted the paradigm of value where I don't care what I get. I’m not a manipulator anymore. I’m a motivator. My job is to provide as much value as I can, ask for what I want and come to a logical conclusion of, “Can you see any reason you won’t want to move forward?” If I haven't done the work before getting there, then the deal's not going to close. 
Dustin
What I hear is you're unattached to the deal, to the outcome of the deal.
Dave
My happiness, my success, and my ego are unattached. What I am attached to is the consistent everyday persistent enjoyment of the pursuit of that deal. It’s the pursuit of my potential, the pursuit of as much value that I can bring. I wake up every morning praying for ten people that I can help. I try to keep the most productive, accessible day available to me, so I can help as many people as I can.
Dustin
Dave, you've been a lawyer. Practicing?
Dave
No. I took the bar though. My mom made me took the bar.
Dustin
You’re a tech guy and from what I understand, you're the guy that we must thank for our cellphone addictions or smartphone addictions. Is that right?
Dave
It’s so fun to get credit for stuff. I worked with Warren Moon. I worked with Leigh Steinberg. I ran the first smartphone division. Being a leader, I get so much credit. I try to live with radical humility that I didn't invent the phone. I’m a great communicator so people wanted me to communicate what they created. I was hired by Samsung in the first smartphone, the first Windows CE device, Bill Gates and all those guys. I was the one hired to be the spokesperson, the CEO. Leigh Steinberg, the same thing. I was the person to lead and now with Warren Moon as well. I gave Warren, Leigh, and the companies that were involved with the PC phone all the credit. It’s like being the Head Coach of the Golden State Warriors. I promise you, I’m not a basketball genius. There’s no discredit to Steve Kerr, but if I sat on the bench with those guys, I’d win the championship.
Dustin
Lawyer, philanthropist, speaker, author. To me, it looks you're a master re-inventor or one that keeps adding titles. If we're staying with these reinvention things, what do you think are the keys to reinventing yourself?
Dave
It's evolution. What other people look as shortage, waste, obstacles, change and only a wet baby likes to change. I love change because to me, if something's changing, it's evolving and expanding. I see this unexpected opportunity. Where other people see the struggle, challenges, and obstacles, I see this as an unexpected opportunity. My job is to elevate my awareness so that more things become expected to me, so I can prepare for them. I’m working now at creating processes to deal with an unexpected opportunity.
Dustin
You're incredibly connected across many different industries. I’m following in those footsteps. How do you start relationships where maybe somebody doesn't know your name and doesn't know your backstory? How do you start them in new industries?
Dave
Every single relationship, whether it's with someone famous or not, important or not or substantially credible or not, it starts with an emotional connection. What I learned at a young age by having this mother that taught me to emotionally connect to people, is understanding to start and sell on emotion for logical reasons. I can pick out things easily to emotionally connect with you and say, “I love those shoes,” and then tell you a story how I was gifted by Nike this unbelievable pair of shoes that I found out is worth too much money to start wearing them. That's an emotional connection. I say, “What do you like about your shoes?” I’ll give the biggest tip to everybody in here. Half the population on Earth or a little bit more now are women. My mom taught me a great trick to emotionally attach to women. I only had one sister. Now I have three daughters, so I’ve learned even more. All you got to do is say, “I love your purse. I love your shoes.” You've got about 95% of over half the people on Earth that will emotionally attach to you and be willing to listen to the logical reasons why you could mutually benefit or provide value to them.
Dustin
Now, you have the relationship and you know so many people. How do you keep them nurtured? How do you stay connected? That's got to be a full-time gig, but the right move, how do you personally do it?
Dave
I live by value. How I can be of service? Being kind to my future self and living life with a lens of productivity and accessibility. Being as productive as I can which creates efficiencies, effectiveness and statistical success. Accessibility runs two ways. One, being accessible to others and also accessing others. I do things efficiently. I learned how to use all my social media, the telephone, these media contacts as far as video. I also put minimum amounts of time. I delegate every single day minimum amount of time for my wife, my son, and my three daughters. The reason I separate those is my son is eight, so he gets much more time than two teenage daughters that don't want to see me, also my employees, my partner, and all these different people. I have a minimum of one minute of time that I give to my mom to make sure that she knows every day that I love and appreciate her. That's how I stay in contact with all the family, friends. I respond personally to my Instagram, my text, my emails. I do it efficiently. Sometimes I get in trouble because it's too cryptic and I get back from my closest friends going, “What does that mean?” I’m like, “I hate text.” You can see my executive assistant, she’s awesome. I call her my partner in the business. She’ll ask me, “Do you want this or this?” I’ll say yes.
Dustin
From a spiritual standpoint, why do you think Warren Moon came into your life?
Dave
It’s the Laws of Attraction. When I moved from Ohio to California, I wanted to go to the Rose Bowl because of my favorite team’s Ohio State and/or who is playing Michigan. Warren Moon was a quarterback against Michigan with 16.5 points. I was so scared because my mom knows nothing about football. She said she'd take me. It was the parade. He won that game. I listened on the radio crying on the way home in our station wagon driving home. I was destined to meet Warren Moon. I believed that. I used to watch him in Canada going, “This guy's the best. I’ve never still seen someone throw a football better than Warren Moon.” When I met him at Leigh Steinberg, we've known each other from past lives.
Dustin
Why do you think Leigh came into your life spiritually? 
Dave
I came into Leigh’s life, to be honest, I didn't know it. He had a bigger impact on my life business-wise, but Warren Moon and I had a significant impact on his personal life. I was brought in because he was living with ego and time issues that I had just worked through with my own personal issues. With his alcoholism, I was able to be brave enough to stand up to him and with Warren to allow him to bottom out and to acknowledge his genetic disease and then strong-willed as he is to be a survivor of that. Now representing Patrick Mahomes, there’s nobody happier for Leigh than me. I’m proud of him for being sober for many years.
Dustin
Dave thanks big time for making the time to be on the show. I appreciate it. I love learning all the info that you put out. Where can folks find more about what you're up to?
Dave
Follow me on @DavidMeltzer or just google David Meltzer. I’m blessed to have great SEOs. Google David Meltzer and you’ll find my LinkedIn, Facebook, and website. It's all right there.

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