What Others Don’t Want To Do – Karl Curran

What Others Don’t Want To Do

All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angel mother.” – Abraham Lincoln

In most cases, they’re simply the best and we become who we are because of their lessons in love and life. The mom who leads by strong examples has the greatest impact the world could ever know.

Just ask Karl Curran about the lessons he learned from the most important woman in his life, his mom.

“I grew up in Fort Lauderdale, Florida,” says Karl. “An only child. A single-parent family. My mom raised me. It was always work and grind. I never knew my father. He was never in the picture. So growing up I didn’t know any better. I can remember my mom working day jobs and night jobs just to make ends meet.”

“So growing up it was tough with mom working so much. We eventually moved so I could go to a different high school, even though my mom couldn’t afford it. But she moved us to an area where the schools were better and we lived in a nice neighborhood, even though it was the worst part of the neighborhood, just to be in the good school district. I probably wouldn’t have turned out the way I did if we’d have stayed in that certain demographic area. So I didn’t come with a golden spoon in my mouth or anything like that. Like I said before, for me and my mom, it was always work and grind… single parent with no siblings. My mom never remarried either.”

Lessons learned from the best of the best. Maybe, that’s why Karl has become one of the best at USHEALTH Advisors. Work and grind. Karl joined USHA in 2015 and is about to surpass $7 million in personal insurance policies issued. In 2017, Karl was runner-up for the award for Field Training Agent of the Year at USHA and as a Field Sales Leader, Karl also helped train and nurture many others. In 2020 and 2021, he had the number one Field Training Agents in the entire country on his team. Taking a page out of his mother’s handbook on work ethic, Karl knew what it took to reach the top.

But Karl’s mom was not the only woman who led the way. It takes a village to raise a child and as the only child of a single mother, Karl was no different. They used to say that behind every man is a great woman… but as we evolve and change we learn that it’s really the other way around. The women in our lives, especially those who help raise us are the ones out in front, and we’re better off if we live, love and give exactly the way they do.

“It’s been the work for as far back as I can remember,” says Karl. “Even when I was younger, eight or nine years old, I remember going with my aunt, she would be a vendor at the Irish festivals for St. Patty’s Day, and I would help her with the booths. And then my other aunt used to have bagel routes and go to the different offices in the morning. And I would go, of course my mom was at work, so I would have to be with whomever could look after me that day. But I remember going to different offices, businesses, and we would sell ’em bagels and coffee.”

“So yeah, I’ve worked and never really knew any different, it wasn’t work to me. It was just something that you do – and that’s what I saw my family and my mom do as well. My grandparents, they actually worked in the hospitality industry. My grandmother was a server and my grandfather was a bartender. And looking back on it, God bless ’em man, even with seven kids my grandparents worked hard. They worked multiple jobs. They used to call my grandmother, Murph the Surf, because she also was a bookie as well,” laughs Karl. “So I guess she was always in the mix, always trying to make ends meet.”

And it was more than just work ethic Karl learned. During a critical time in his youth, while his mom worked to support the two of them, Karl spent time with some relatives who changed his life.

“During my first year of high school I underwent a relocation to live with my Uncle Mark and Aunt Dee,” says Karl. “At that time, my uncle served as the  Fire Chief of Coral Springs, the very city in which I attended Stoneman Douglas High School. As I reflect upon this pivotal experience, I can’t help but feel immense gratitude for its profound impact on my life. Residing with them afforded me a sense of stability and structure that was previously absent. It served as a foundational pillar in my life, from which I greatly benefited.”

Structure and stability lead to that other “S” word. It’s a recipe for success Karl used, first for himself, and then to help other agents create a new life, along with the “E” word… expectations.

“I learned about USHEALTH Advisors from Garrett Laughlin, a high school friend,” says Karl. “He was and is one of my good buddies. One day I was telling Garrett the story about what was going on with my current business and I said, “Hey man, I never asked what you do exactly? I know you do well. I know you’re always happy and you enjoy doing what you do. I need help. And without question, Garrett says “Okay, this is what you have to do.”

What Karl had to do was get his health and life license, pick up the phone and get it in gear… and fast… because the other “gear” he had been selling was going under. Karl’s apparel business, DILL, which stands for, Deep Inside Lies Limitless Strength, which he ran with several other partners, was in trouble. DILL was no longer a beacon of strength. After a successful run, the company was heading south in a hurry and the money was running out.

“I had no choice, I just got rolling pretty quick at USHA,” says Karl. “They say when your back’s up against the wall is when you perform the best. And I didn’t think anything of it. I just put my head down and worked. I didn’t question the system, I didn’t question anything. I was being guided by a friend that I trusted and I just did what he said, I kept it simple and I got to work. When I first got started, Garrett says, “All right, get out a piece of paper and write down these five things, then get on the phone.” And I guess just with all the experience I’d had in life, or built up to this point, it was easy for me to talk to people via the phone, or communicate and just use my personality. I’ve always been a people person. I’m enjoyable to be around. And thank God, I mean it worked out well.”

Keep the work simple and then when you’re in leadership, keep your E.I. high, your Emotional Intelligence, because you also need to be sympathetic. As Karl learned by leading others, one size does not fit all.

“So when someone walks through the doors at USHEALTH Advisors, you don’t know if they’re broken. You don’t know their situation,” says Karl. “So you’ve got to figure it out, you’ve got to gain their trust so you can help them, even if they don’t think that you’re willing to help them. So we get ’em in, we set expectations of what’s to come and we tell ’em the truth. So that way, when that day comes when things aren’t going well – or if they don’t talk to somebody for two days straight on the phones – then they’re expecting that. So we get ’em in, spend about a day explaining the process, and then we bring ’em back and take about a week before we actually get ’em on the phones or get ’em rolling. That’s where it kind of weeds out if this is for them or not. I always tell my people when they come on board, if you give me a hundred percent, I’m going to give you a hundred percent. And I’m loyal to that. If an agent gives me 50 percent, I’m not going to sacrifice my time for that, and then he is going to leave a couple of weeks later.”

“But when they first come in the door, it’s important to definitely set the expectations, tell ’em what to expect, and also the potential here as well. And then we go over our mission and we go over the company and talk about our CEO Troy McQuagge and give ’em a little background of who we are and what we’re about. And that way they can understand that side of it as well. It’s not just about the sales because to be honest, it’s about you. For these new people coming in, they don’t grasp the whole thing, but after a month or two, they’re like, “Wow, this culture is amazing. This company is amazing.” Now it comes full circle.”

Life is a circle and for Karl, it’s also a cycle. To let off steam, and engage in some alone time, Karl likes to opt for a little breakaway.

“I like to bike ride is what I really like to do,” says Karl. “So I’d say about two-and-a-half years ago, I really took my health seriously and I got into being more active, got into the gym. I work out five to six times a week. Now, I like to get out in the sun and bike ride. Being in Florida, I love any opportunity to get on a boat or a jet ski as well. But I also love to eat, so I love trying new restaurants, which means I gotta keep exercising. I also recently started traveling by myself a few times, to see what it’s about and I love it. Just experiencing different restaurants and cultures in different areas is very cool.”

Work hard, play hard, love hard. Karl says besides work and a little solitude, his main focus is on the woman who gave him life. It’s still a singular sensation between the two and a relationship Karl says he not only treasures, but also wants to protect.

“My greatest achievement I think so far would be retiring my mother,” says Karl. “She was diagnosed with lung cancer about two-and-a half years ago, and she had to take some time off. I’ve always helped her, but I officially did retire her. She’s good now too. She’s in remission. She’s not as active as she once was, which is understandable. But she’s in remission. Mom is actually going to start doing some part-time work now. She can’t sit home any longer, and I encourage her to go get out a little bit. But she’s doing better now and thank God… because it is always been her and I. So I don’t know what I would do without her.”

Karl’s sentiment is shared by billions in this world. The miracle makers who give us life, then do all they can to make sure that life can thrive on this planet.

Karl says the attributes he’s seen demonstrated by his mom and all the women in his life, are what have helped carry him this far… sacrifice, strength, and service.

“It’s the drive to help people, especially at USHEALTH Advisors” says Karl. “I mean, you could ask anyone, I wear my heart on my sleeve, I’ll give you the shirt off my back. That’s just who I am and how I was raised. Do good to others and treat them as you want to be treated. Sometimes that has burned me. I’ve been too nice. But has it really hurt me? At least I know deep down inside I did the right thing. So that’s what this business is all about really, because I’ve been in it long enough that it’s seeing the next guy up. It’s seeing changing someone’s life, bringing them in, seeing them transform. And it keeps me humble. I was that person at one time and it reminds me to stay humble and this is what I actually do it for, and I’m honored to do it.”

The higher you go and the more successful you become, the harder you must work on trying not to just get by, to coast, it’s one of the challenges of achievement. Coasting might be okay if you’re riding a bike, but not if you want to climb the ladder of success. Every rung higher requires strength and introspection.

“Being an only child, I don’t know if it’s always put me in survival mode or if it’s fight or flight mode, you know what I mean?” says Karl. “I’ve always had to rely on myself and being young that was all I had. I just recently started diving in to myself and asking why I act the way I act and certain traits I have. So I’m learning this process as well.”

“I mean, I want to leave a legacy and I’ve thought about this in the last few years. I want to leave something for the next generations to come. I want to build a family and have something left for them to follow as well. And one quote or one thing that I live by and stick to is that successful people do what unsuccessful people don’t want to do. That’s what it really boils down to. No one’s pushing you to get up in the morning, no one’s pushing me to get up in the morning. It’s what I do. That’s all I know. A lot of people say quotes are cliche, or there are sayings that are so cliche. Well, they’re cliche until you actually live it or go through it. And then you’re like, oh yeah, that does make sense, that’s the truth. Or, that saying, yeah, that does reflect me and what I’ve gone through. And I guess that just comes with time and that comes with life and that comes with growing… that’s where I am right now. There are a lot of things that I’m like, oh, that’s true or that just happened to me. But there’s one big questiong that I harp on for myself and for my new agents – how bad do you want it? And I’ll say it again, successful people do what unsuccessful people don’t want to do.

So do the work. And then you’ll live like Karl Curran.

Until next time, thanks for taking the time.

Your Storyteller,

Mark Brodinsky

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