Recently, we lost a giant who made a genuine difference in this world.
Bob Proctor sought every day to exemplify the ideals and principles of which he was so passionate. He truly believed in EVERYONE. His special ‘secret’ was that he was easy to impress and very hard to offend. He looked for the magic in each person with an irrepressible KNOWING that each and every one of us has everything we need to live rich, meaningful, and joyful lives. Bob could care less about comparison and instead sought to bring out the unique greatness in each individual. He was never threatened by others’ successes. It is no wonder that the Go-Giver is based upon him because he always strove to give rather than get.
The story of how I first met Bob beautifully demonstrates his special spirit.
Shortly after my first book, Beyond Success was published I was talking with a dear friend of mine I respect deeply. He was very excited about my book and said that one of the first things I MUST do would be to send a copy to Bob Proctor. I had never heard of Bob at that time, so I just took it in and didn’t give it much thought. About three days later in a conversation with another friend I highly esteemed, I heard the same thing…send your book right away to Bob Proctor. At this point, I thought, “isn’t that an interesting coincidence.” Again, though, I did nothing about it. A week later, you guessed it, another friend urged me to contact Bob and get him my book. Now, I was beginning to wonder what was going on! Finally, a few days later, friend number 4 hit me with the same advice! None of these four friends knew one another, so their recommendations were completely separate. I’m a bit thick, but, not so thick that four conks on the head wouldn’t break through my thick skull! So, I sat down that next day and wrote a fun letter to Bob, telling him all about the four friends and enclosing the letter with a copy of the book. I really didn’t expect any response because Bob certainly had no idea who I was. I hoped he might read the letter because it was great fun to share the story.
Two weeks later on a Sunday morning at 6:00 AM, my phone rang. Bob lived in the Toronto area (Eastern Time) and at that time we lived in Hamilton, Montana (Mountain Time). I snatched up the phone worrying that something may have happened to my elderly parents. But when I answered, I heard a new voice on the other end.
“Hi there. Is this Brian Biro?”
“Yes, who’s this?”
“I’m Bob Proctor and I’m a bit angry at you Brian.”
I thought, “Oh no, what did I do?” But Bob went on…
“I haven’t slept the past two nights because I couldn’t put your book down! It’s a hell of a book!”
As I let out a huge sigh of relief Bob continued:
“Brian, here’s what I want you to do. Send me a case of your books. I’ll then send a copy to 32 of my contacts telling them to buy a case. I’ll tell them to tell their contacts to do the same. And on and on! This book needs to be READ!”
I was completely blown away. Within a couple of weeks, Bob invited me to speak at a big event he was putting on in Phoenix. At that event, he introduced me to many people including some top leaders from Nikken, a major direct sales company Bob had worked with for years.
The next thing I knew, I was in front of 14,000 people at a gigantic Nikken event at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto.
Because of Bob’s faith in a young speaker with no real following, I have gone on to speak at hundreds of events in the direct sales industry.
As for Beyond Success, within six months of Bob’s kickstart, my book was in bookstores all over the US and Canada. It would go on to reach number 16 on Amazon from over two million titles, and stay in the top 1,000 for two years!
Bob and I became friends for the rest of his magnificent life. When he suffered a heart attack around ten years ago, he called me to come and speak at his Matrix event and I zipped up to Toronto to help my friend. When I, along with several great friends created a major annual event in our hometown of Asheville, North Carolina, I asked Bob to come and speak. Keep in mind, his speaking fees were in the $40,000 to $50,000 range, and our event was a gift to our community. Every cent brought in from this “Lessons in Leadership” event would go to charity, which meant we did not pay our speakers. But Bob didn’t care. His friends were more important than money. He did get me though. He started his presentation in front of around 600 enraptured participants this way…
“Hello, Asheville! I’m delighted to be here with you tonight! My friend, Brian Biro asked me to come and he’s such a special man I couldn’t say no. He’s also rather clever though. He called me and asked how my wife Linda and I were doing.
Then, out of the blue, he asked me: “Bob, I have a question for you. Do you believe in free speech?”
What could I say but “Of course I do, Brian.”
“Immediately Brian jumped on my answer and said, ‘GREAT Bob! In that case, I have a FREE SPEECH for you to do in Asheville!” He brought the house down!
Though Bob was 87 years old when he passed away. He was absolutely prolific in his creative work, with hundreds of tremendous videos, audios, and essays. His book, “You Were Born Rich” is a classic, as powerful and life-changing as his personal favorite, “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill which he carried with him for more than sixty years, reading it constantly. He never stopped learning and growing.
Bob had such grace and such energy, all of us who knew and loved him were stunned when he passed, despite his age and past cardiac challenges, because he seemed as if he would live forever.
The more I think about it, I know he WILL.
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