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Inspire your SMSF team with Jacqui Cooper


Never before have I seen so many people absolutely speechless, shaking their heads, at the conclusion of a guest speakers presentation at any conference.
Jacqui Cooper (shown above – centre) – to be honest, I’m lost for words that would do her justice. Determined, Inspiring, Entertaining, Classy, CRAZY!! She’s all these things and more.

A fine line exists between Absolute Determination and Absolute INSANITY!! To hear her story, you got a sense that perhaps Jacqui is not one to operate too far behind that ‘fine line’. Most people aspire to have their toes close to or right on it. Jacqui Cooper jumps well and truly over it!

The guests at the CPA conference we spoke to had common and very mixed emotions. Why, why, why would anyone lying on their back in the snow after mis-judging a jump with a broken hip in 5 places, and her hip joint completely dislocated, then demand the doctors to RESET HER HIP…….so she could make her way back to the hill top, only to ski down TWO MORE times to qualify for her 5th Olympics!! A completely broken body, unstable hip and leg….and jump not once, but TWICE.

Attendees could not believe their ears!

So she jumps and qualifies to represent her country at a 5th Olympic Games. But now she has to repair the damage, and actually MAKE IT to the Olympics. So how does this play out? Does she get there?

The damage to her hip was horrific. She has major surgery to repair the damage. She wakes up from the surgery in a braced, SITTING POSITION. She was fused in this position for months!! She then had to learn to walk again – the perfect preparation for an Olympics. Incredibly, she makes it to the Games, and comes FIFTH, her best result in any of the Olympics she’d competed in! I look to my left on the table..mouths are open, and the gent next to me mouths the words “I’ll be Stuuuuuffed…No Way”!!

ONE TOUGH COOKY!!!! Imagine if she’d chosen boxing or Karate as her sport of choice!

Here’s a question – Would you jump if in the same position? I can’t stop thinking…..If I stuffed my last warm up jump, dislocated my hip, smashed the hip joint, lying in horrific pain….would I be yelling out ‘someone fix my leg so I can make my 2 qualifying jumps’. Not one single person in that audience could comprehend such a THOUGHT, let alone ACTUALLY DOING IT. I laugh out loud just thinking about it. For me…..I wish I could say yes, but I’d have to say “no chance”. I’d call for the magic spray, magic band-aid, magic whistle to put me to sleep, and then get this leg sorted out PRONTO. I think I’d even have them log a call to my Mum to let her know ‘the day hasn’t gone to plan’! Ok…perhaps not the magic band-aid! Yep, “Sorry coach, no more jumping for me today”!

So here are the key take-aways from the night for those looking to drive their SMSF Business:
1. Jacqui was PASSIONATE. You could hear it in her voice, and see it in her smile! You have to truly love what you do to have any chance of success. No plan will ever work if you’re not fully invested and love what you do! Is your SMSF leader passionate? Yeah…..well get out there and shout from the roof tops the value an SMSF will bring to your clients!
2. Have a clear goal and plan. Jacqui’s coach recruited her as a teenager, and a plan was set from that very first day. It had a 20 year time line, and the results were almost an exact mirror of the plan some 20 years later! What’s your SMSF plan for the business? Start with freeing up your staff to focus on high end consulting and marketing! How will you do this? Draft your plan and the roles of the team to implement it! Perhaps train your staff to deliver strategy and consulting advise, and outsource the SMSF Admin and Audit.
3. Jacqui had a career of massive highs and incredible lows. That’s life. It’s an illusion to think everything is great all the time. Accepting the fact the ‘downs’ exist will help you accept your own adversity when your turn comes around, because it will come! How will you deal with it? Your business will experience the same ups and downs. Staff will come and go, so start planning how you want your internal resources to look, who will do the marketing, who will convert the lead, who will collate source data, who will review work, how you will outsource, etc. Plenty to think about, so start NOW!
4. To be the very best, you have to have a special something over and above the others! I’ve heard other success stories from remarkable people, and for me Jacqui’s mental toughness is beyond anything I’ve ever heard!! For me, that was her edge! I’m still shaking my head! So for your business, you need to stand out, you need that special something, and you need the market to know you have that ‘special something’! Your competitive advantage has to be unique and sustainable. Think it through, market, convert and grow!

If you ever run an event, and need someone to inspire and educate your team, clients, or YOURSELF, Jacqui Cooper is one AMAZING lady. You’ll be sure to walk out shaking your head, thinking to yourself that perhaps your playing your game ‘A BIT SAFE’. I think we can all afford to push the boundary a little more, move closer to that ‘fine line’, and really HAVE A CRACK!

Oohhh…and did I mention that at the age of 4, she wound the back window down in the car while on a family outing. Travelling at 60kms an hour, she climbed out of the window, onto the roof, and held the roof racks for a few kilometres (just taking in the sites) before her parents realised she wasn’t in her seat!! PLLLEEEEEEEEEEASE!!!!!!

Well done CPA Australia on securing such a terrific speaker!

All the best
Mike and the SuperAA Team
PS: follow us on twitter @SuperAA_Pty_Ltd