Today we’d like to introduce you to Steve Anderson.
Hi Steve, we’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
I was born and raised in Salt Lake Valley by two great parents. Dad was a prominent Utah businessman who ran Evans Communications, which at the time, was the largest ad agency in the western United States. He was also Chairman of the Board at Primary Children’s Medical Center and President of Desert Book. We had a number of non-negotiables at our house growing up, one of which was to have a paper route. At that time, the two newspapers in Salt Lake were primarily delivered by young men and women on bicycles. The Salt Lake Tribute was the morning paper and The Deseret News was the evening paper. Some of my earliest lessons in business and life were learned on an old 1960’s purple, Schwinn, Sting-Ray bicycle under the tutelage of my very business savvy father who was an expert at using dinner table type seminar talk as an opportunity to teach business lessons that were then applied in my earliest business.
Those lessons have been related in my most recent book entitled The Bicycle Book: 12 Secrets for Serving Others in Business and in Life. Any organization can apply the lessons in the book to deliver higher levels of customer service and care.
The 12 lessons have been applied throughout my life in the different businesses and charities that I’ve started. Previous to that, during my years at the University of Utah, I had the opportunity to apply some of those lessons in what was a start up chapter of the nation’s largest social fraternity, Sigma Phi Epsilon. We had the opportunity to start from scratch and build a fraternity chapter based on a lot of the same principles that are shared in the book. That opportunity opened a door to create a business partnership with one of my fraternity brothers that are today based in Salt Lake City, Texas, and around the country where we help businesses apply the same lessons.
We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
There have been a number of obstacles along the way that included taking the lessons and applying them in the University setting to start our fraternity which had to compete in the face of very established fraternities that had been on campus for generations with a lot of legacy advantages. We applied the lessons that are now in The Bicycle Book to successfully launch and create an environment that was unique at the time on the University of Utah campus. Moving forward in my first business out of college, I had the opportunity to apply those same lessons in working with companies that had team members who were more than twice my age at the time and to help propel those companies to higher levels. One of the discoveries along the way was that many of our clients were still wrestling with the same questions that I wrestled with in college like, “what should I do that would make me the most happy?” and “what can I be the most successful at?”. Along the way, we created a program that answers those questions for high school and college students called Eagle University (EagleUniversity.org). The mission of the program is to give high school and college students a seven-year head start on their careers. It is packed with ideas, techniques, and systems that take most of us decades to learn on our own. We help young people shortcut those lessons to learn them earlier so they don’t have to figure as many things out by trial and error.
Great, so let’s talk business. Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
Today I work across several different companies and charities, including businesses in the dental industry. We help dentists re-work their entire patient experience to make it one of the best in health care through our company Total Patient Service Institute. We also created a dental association, Crown Council (CrownCouncil.com), that is an affiliation of dental practices committed to creating a Culture of Success in their practice. Through the Crown Council, we created The Smiles for Life Foundation, which has become one of the dental industry’s largest charitable organizations and has raised nearly $50 million for children’s and dental-related causes around the world. The mission of everything we do is to make a difference in people’s lives by delivering exceptional service as we’ve outlined in The Bicycle Book.
Other books include:
The Culture of Success: 10 Natural Laws for Creating the Place Where Everyone Wants to Work
Nearly Everything I Learned in Kindergarten Screwed Me Up: Lessons from School- K Through PhD- You Desperately Need to Unlearn Now, and New Lessons to Triumph in the Real World
The 13 Biggest Mistakes Parents Make and How to Avoid Them: What Parents Can Do to Help Their Children be More Self-reliant and Successful.
What was your favorite childhood memory?
One profound childhood memory is starting my first business, which was doing a paper route as a kid. I also mowed lawns and did landscaping all over Salt Lake City. Another memory I have is learning to ski at the Deseret News Ski School at age 12 with my dad and spending every Saturday morning skiing at Brighton Ski Resort, Solitude, and others. Dad strategically used those moments to teach me life lessons while he had me captive on the chair lift! Boy Scouts was another non-negotiable in our family. I loved hiking and camping in the Uinta Mountains for days and sometimes weeks at a time. I also cherish going to the University of Utah and starting Sigma Phi Epsilon.
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