Monday, June 24, 2024

Don Woodring, Mentorship.CLUB: Overcoming Challenges and Embracing Change

In this exclusive interview with Don Woodring, the CEO of Mentorship.CLUB, we delve into his remarkable journey from overcoming personal obstacles to becoming a successful business leader. From navigating the challenges of PR and visibility to sharing unforgettable stories involving clients, Don provides valuable insights into his business philosophy and plans for the future. Join us as we explore the dynamic landscape of small business with a seasoned entrepreneur who continues to embrace change and innovation.

Interviewee Name: Don Woodring

Company: Mentorship.CLUB

Intervirew Host: Jesse Samberg

The Interview

Let’s get started. First, we’d like to know more about how you started your business journey

Don Woodring : *I was the CEO of a public company at 39, one of only 10 under 40 at that time.
*In part, that was due to the mentorship I received. I personally reported to and was mentored by some of the best business minds in the world.
*After we sold that public company, I started some different companies. The latest is Mentorship.CLUB.
*One day I was in the office thinking about how lucky I was. I lived for a short period of time in the Compton area of LA with my drug addicted and alcoholic Mother. Then I became a CEO after a lot of other obstacles.
*One of the greatest benefits was that mentorship, not only from one great mentor, but rather many, so I started Mentorship.CLUB.

Reflecting on your business history, what stands out as the single greatest challenge you’ve successfully navigated, and how did you overcome it?

Don Woodring : It’s difficult to pick just one. I have been lucky to have overcome many obstacles including alcoholism and drug addiction in my family, sexual abuse, incest, child pornography and many health issues such as muscular dystrophy, diabetes, heart attacks, strokes, 41 surgeries including a dozen just on my eyes, a kidney transplant, a pancreas transplant, cancer, going deaf in my right ear, having to learn how to walk all over again and many others. However, I never let that get me down. I still won 3 state championships, won a scholarship to study abroad, was selected by a Fortune 500 company as their top national recruit and became the CEO of a public company.

Businesses often face ongoing challenges. What does your business consistently grapple with, and how do you tackle these challenges head-on?

Don Woodring : *PR and visibility. We’re on a mission to become recognized as the leaders in Mentorship.
*Access to capital. We’re beginning the process of looking for a capital raise.

Can you share with us the most unforgettable story involving a customer or client? What made it memorable, and what lessons did you draw from the experience?

Don Woodring : When I was living in Toronto, we were bidding against a competitor to win the business for M&M Mars. We had to surreptitiously switch the storage of 80% of their Halloween candy for that year. We were successful in that regard. One day while I was driving, I got a call from our VP. We had an emergency at that facility. We had a collapse of the VNA racking, which ended up dominoing and crashing through the walls of the warehouse…..this as we were bidding on getting their business and a month before the Halloween season.

We had to regroup quickly. We put in a significant recouping and repacking operation. Eventually, we were able to recoup twice as much in one half the time they expected.

Due to that, we were rewarded the business. Additionally, I was able to demonstrate one of my stupid human tricks. Telling the color of M&Ms by taste. One VP called his Quality VP to find out if there were anything in the M&Ms to make that difference. He told him no, so we made a bet. It was my best performance ever. I did 14 in a row.

Looking ahead, what are your current plans for your business when you retire?

Don Woodring : I have a philosophy of Improve, Grow and Bestow. So, I never plan on retiring, but do plan on bestowing it onto a new group of outstanding business leaders.

Navigating the small business landscape can be both challenging and rewarding. Can you share a bit about the specific hurdles you’ve encountered in areas like sales, marketing, and adapting to changing customer trends?

Don Woodring : In the past few decades, marketing has changed DRAMATICALLY. As an “old guy,” I do not have old thinking. I may be slower going up stairs, but know my weaknesses. We are embarking currently on a significant PR and digital marketing strategy, for which I am very excited. I was so lucky in that I worked for a company early in my career that was very forward thinking and embraced change. I know of no other way.

Leaders Perception magazine would like to thank Don Woodring and “Mentorship.CLUB” for the time dedicated to completing this interview and sharing their valuable insights with our readers!

Interested in connecting with the host of this interview series? Feel free to reach out to Jesse Samberg on LinkedIn: Jesse Samberg’s LinkedIn Profile

Explore additional categories

Explore Other Interviews