Smashing the Plateau

Become A Better You

David Ralph is the host of the megahit podcast Join Up Dots. With over 4 million downloads in 178 countries, he’s solidified his status as one the biggest stars in podcasting. David also teaches other entrepreneurs how to develop content that resonates with audiences and accelerates their businesses. Today he tells us how to run a successful enterprise in new media, talks about taking down mental barriers, and shows us how to become better – and more excited – versions of ourselves.

Topics include:

  • How to define – and accept – who you are
  • Constant study, and listening with fresh ears
  • Old media vs. new media
  • Why you’re not a master of all trades (and why that’s a good thing)

David Ralph is the host of the top ranked online show 
Join Up Dots, where in each episode
 he takes his guests on a journey of discovery following the words of the late Steve Jobs. From birth to today and back again, David joins up the dots of his guests’ lives, highlighting their failures and successes (with more than a few laughs in between). He also leads them to his time travel section “The Sermon On The Mic,” where they have the chance to speak to their younger selves and share the advice they have gained. This is a hugely powerful and inspirational show that has gained a massive audience with its fun and quirky style that is fresh, unique and inspiring. David is also an ex-corporate trainer, with a wife, five kids, a grandson, a cat, and a snail (that might actually be dead already…who can tell?).

Learn more about David at LinkedIn and iTunes.






How To Create The Success You’ve Always Wanted

In spite of all the naysayers, renowned coach and public speaker Ivy Slater managed to start two successful businesses while also raising a family. Today she reveals how entrepreneurs from every walk of life can push past the opposition to create their own success stories. She also shares the biggest aha moment of her career, and discusses the importance of believing in your goals and building personal connections.

We discuss…

  • Why self-doubt is normal (and how to overcome it)
  • The importance of positive language
  • Building a team that goes the distance together
  • Having a daily gratitude practice

Ivy Slater is the CEO of Slater Success Coaching, where she works with smart and ambitious female entrepreneurs to design profitable service-based businesses. For the past 10 years, Ivy has worked with hundreds of entrepreneurs, helping them step into value as leaders in business and create their desired lifestyle. She was also the owner of the 7-figure printing business, Slater Graphics, where she made a positive impact in the industry by creating a niche market for women buyers. As a nationally recognized speaker, trainer and author, Ivy has been featured on stages across the country. She is a wife of 30 years, and a mother of two adult children.

Learn more about Ivy at, LinkedIn and Twitter.






How To Fix Your People Problems

Dr. Debra Dupree knows how to fix your people problems. Leveraging her background in psychology and business, Debra helps people master their emotional intelligence, repair damaged relationships, and fulfill their career and life goals. Today she discusses how to build psychological safety in order to have better self-awareness and less conflict in the workplace. She also shows us how to stop taking things so personally, and reveals why business leaders need to move with change instead of rebelling against it.

Topics include:

  • How to build resiliency and flexibility around change
  • Recognizing other people’s perspectives
  • How to repair long-term relationships
  • The importance of self-reevaluating

Over the last 30+ years, Dr. Debra Dupree has been fascinated with what makes people tick…at work and at home.  She became a therapist, mediator, professor and doctor of psychology…and now she’s a public speaker and author. Debra helps people recover from the drama and trauma in their pasts, and helps them discover positive karma. She uncovers those emotional pains that get in the way of true success.  She helps her clients map out a plan for a whole new way of “being” for stronger performances and increased earnings. She helps turnaround what makes good people become bad bosses and what makes great employees fail.

Learn more about Debra at and LinkedIn.






Why Publicity Really Matters

As a publicity and networking strategist Jill Lublin has worked with NBC, Tony Robbins, The New York Times, to name a few. Her interactive keynote speeches are legendary. Today Jill reveals why the ability to garner publicity is one of the most powerful tools in any businessperson’s arsenal. She also reveals why telling the simple truth – to yourself and your audience – is the best way to gain recognition.

Topics include:

  • How to impact your audience in an overcrowded market
  • The right way to get yourself in the media
  • Publicity for introverts
  • How to keep yourself consistently centered

Jill Lublin is an international speaker on the topics of radical influence, publicity, networking and referrals. She is the author of 3 bestselling books: Get Noticed…Get Referrals, Guerrilla Publicity and Networking Magic. Her latest book, Profit of Kindness, will be released in early 2017.  Jill is a master strategist on how to position your business for more profitability and visibility in the marketplace. She is CEO of a strategic consulting firm with 20 years’ experience working with over 100,000 people plus national and international media. Jill teaches Publicity Crash Courses as both live events and live webinars.

Learn more about Jill at, LinkedIn, Twitter and






How To Find Your Personal Vision

In today’s episode of Smashing The Plateau, executive networking expert Matt Spooner reveals why having a personal (and professional) vision is the only way to assume power over your career and start making transformational decisions. Matt shows us why – and how – everyone from senior-level executives to young entrepreneurs can set attainable goals that will turn their personal visions into fulfilling realities.

Topics include:

  • How to share your vision with other people
  • Why your career is just like a relationship
  • Tips for throwing community and networking events
  • Why traditional networking models no longer work (and what to do instead)

Matt Spooner is the Director of the Executive Network for McDermott & Bull, an executive search firm headquartered in Orange County, California. Matt oversees the firm’s efforts to establish and maintain meaningful relationships with senior-level executives throughout the country. Prior to joining McDermott & Bull, Matt spent most of his career forming relationships with influential contributors to various non-profit entities, whose markets he helped establish in Southern California. These entities include United Synagogue Youth (USY), American Jewish University (AJU), and Jewish National Fund (JNF). Matt is an avid endurance athlete who has competed in several marathons, ultramarathons, and triathlons. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, Los Angeles in 2001.

Learn more about Matt at,,, LinkedIn and Twitter.





Changing The Way We Define Success

Mark Monchek is redefining what success means for big business. As Founder and Chief Opportunity Officer at The Opportunity Lab, he builds organizations in which leaders put the needs of their customers, employees and communities before everything else. Today Mark reveals why big business is in the midst of a social revolution, and why that means money and status are no longer the cornerstones of success. He also tells us why leaders need to get out of the C-suite and start mingling with their customers.

We discuss…

  • Making your purpose clear (and sticking to it)
  • Creating better brand loyalty and engagement
  • How to measure ROI in employee development
  • Social media and customer feedback
  • Why we live in the age of disorder (and what that means for business)

Mark Monchek’s mission is to empower conscious leaders to build great companies that make a difference in the world. He founded The Opportunity Lab to uncover unconscious beliefs, and start shifting our mindset from scarcity to abundance. Mark has worked with leaders from Google, Apple, General Electric, Goldman Sachs, The New York Times, the Wharton School of Business, NBC, Columbia University, Time Warner, United Nations, The American Lung Association, and United Way of Greater New York to help them take their organizations to the next level of sustainable growth.

Mark’s work has been featured on the Lifetime Network, That Matters, Conscious Talk Radio, WCBS, Catalyst, Newsday, Working Women Magazine, and The San Francisco Chronicle. A chapter from Mark’s forthcoming book, The Culture of Opportunity, was published as a part of OD Network’s Organization Development in Practice in January 2016.

Learn more about Mark at LinkedIn and Twitter.




Why You Need To Face Your Fears Head On

After his partnership dissolved in 1990, Cliff McLarty hit the lowest point of his career. With only $2.45 to his name, Cliff and his family banded together and climbed their way back to the top. In today’s episode, he tells us why embracing your fears is the only way to overcome adversity. He also reveals how his childhood fascination with board games sparked his love for real estate, and gives new insight into why pursuing your passions will give rise to a successful career and a dynamic life.

Topics include:

  • The importance of finding a supportive network
  • Finding the best ways to invest your time and money
  • Why entrepreneurs need to the ditch the self-centered attitude
  • How to open yourself up to new ideas

Cliff McLarty wrote his first business plan in the 6th grade, and decided he wanted to be the CEO of a major corporation. However, life had a different direction for him. He went into partnership in 1988, which ultimately did not pan out. Between supporting his young family and working 5 jobs alongside his wife, this became the defining moment in his life. Real estate was Cliff’s passion, so he started to read, study and implement certain “no money down” investment strategies. Today he is the Co-Founder of Serious Digital Media, LLC, and President of Diversified Asset Development, Inc.

Cliff is also a Navy veteran, who “retired” at age 45, and today calls North Carolina and Florida home, depending on the season and if the fish are biting.

Learn more about Cliff at and LinkedIn.




Master the Art of Presenting

In her first appearance on Smashing The Plateau, former opera singer and celebrated speech and media coach Ruth Sherman taught us to command the room by mastering the art of public speaking. Today she reveals why presentations are one of the most effective ways to speed up your success. She also shows us how to get over our fears (and stay committed) by taking a more systematic approach to speaking.

We discuss…

  • Finding speaking opportunities within your organization
  • Why you don’t need natural charisma to nail public speaking
  • Book the gig, then prepare for it
  • Why most people take too long to ask for help (and how to get it sooner)

Ruth Sherman, M.A., specializes in working with CEOs, celebrities, and leaders of emerging businesses who want to have a greater impact in their communications, both internally and externally. Ruth has worked with some of the world’s largest and most prestigious companies, top CEOs, movie stars and international celebrities. Five of her clients have won Oscars and one, the Pulitzer Prize. Her many film projects include Dallas Buyers Club, Suffragette, and Race. (She loves getting paid to watch movies.)

Ruth is also the author of SPEAKRETS: The 30 Best, Most Effective, Most Overlooked Marketing & Personal Branding Essentials and Get Them To See It Your Way, Right Away: How to Persuade Anyone of Anything. She’s also a widely quoted expert on political communication who knows that the best communicator always wins.

Learn more about Ruth at and LinkedIn, and follow her on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. You can also check out her newest online group program at




Finding Joy In Your Life (And Business) With JV Crum III

Whether you’re a seasoned entrepreneur or just starting out, bestselling author JV Crum III believes you owe it to yourself to feel fantastic everyday. In his second appearance on Smashing The Plateau, JV focuses on how leaders in every line of business can find joy and excitement in their lives and in their careers. He also explains why leaders should add a little more love to their lingo, and reveals why curiosity can create new opportunities.

Topics include:

  • Getting out of the head space into the joy space
  • How to define external and internal success
  • Why we’re holding ourselves back by thinking too small
  • His concept of vision questing (and how it leads to awareness)

JV Crum III is a business coach who helps entrepreneurs grow six and seven figure conscious businesses. He is a speaker, marketing expert, Huffington Post Columnist, bestselling author, and he hosts the top-ranking Conscious Millionaire family of podcasts. JV is Founder of, a global training and wealth product business and holds an MBA, JD, a Masters in Psychology, and has built and sold successful companies. He is also the Founder/Director of the non-profit Conscious World Foundation, which provides training to youth aged 18-25 to become the next generation of conscious leaders worldwide. You can get a free copy of his book, Conscious Millionaire: Grow Your Business by Making a Difference at

Learn more about JV Crum at,,, LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter.

You can also find him on NPR, Entrepreneur on Fire, The Huffington Post, Eventual Millionaire, and Mixergy.




Overcoming The Challenges of First-Time Entrepreneurship

Jon Rhodes and Mark Goddard launched their research and design studio Paper just over a month ago. Today these budding entrepreneurs discuss what led them to take control of their careers and join forces to build something special of their own. Jon and Mark aren’t afraid to share some of the biggest challenges they’re facing breaking into their industry, and they reveal what they’re prepared to do to achieve success in their new venture.

We discuss:

  • The practical and emotional reasons for starting a business
  • Why they’re going to publish their feedback
  • Not being afraid to ask for critique
  • Why everything is a numbers game

Jon Rhodes is a project manager, and has been managing digital projects for clients across the UK and Europe for more than 10 years. Mark Goddard is a service designer, and has evolved over the past nine years from researching and designing websites, to looking at how these products affect the services they’re part of and the people that use them. Together with Cam Spilman, Jon and Mark recently set up Paper, a research and design studio based in Sheffield, England. You can discover more about their business on Twitter, and you can learn more about Jon at Twitter and LinkedIn, and Mark on LinkedIn and Twitter.