Paul (Ole) Olsen was a mentor of mine. Being a member of his TEAM was an honor and privilege. Ole taught me, at a very young age, what it meant to be a coach in a business. He was constantly looking at the glass being half full, with a touch of class, humor, and confidence. Even in our darkest hours.

Coaching at his business meant being involved in my life. He helped support my family dynamics.  He knew their names. Invited my wife and kids to his house for summer events and swimming. His ability to be curious about everything kept people engaged. He made everyone feel like they were the most important person in the room. Ole recognized the talent in everyone he hired, and consequently asked for the best from them. He also encouraged philanthropy. When I told him my desire to start an Optimist International club in Le Mars he was behind me 100%. He knew he was pouring gas on my fire to “lead”.

As a young brash salesman he was able to help me see the importance of confidence and humility. I loved that the most about him. He pumped me up, including me into his circles, and gave me the wisdom like a father. And he instinctively knew when to bring me back to earth.

I remember going into his office one day to tell him about a big client that I had just landed. He knew it was one that I had been relentlessly chasing for a year. When I was finished telling him how I finally got the order he leaned forward in his chair and pointed his cigarette at me and said, “You did so good for me today, I’m going to let you come back and work for me tomorrow!” All the air went out of me. I said, “Wow Ole, that hurts.” He smiled and said, “Don’t forget how that feels.  You are only as good as your last sale.  Tomorrow is another day”.

Thank you Paul Olsen, for being the man that you were, and for your time and effort into helping form the man I became.