Randy VanderVaate is the President and Owner of Funeral Funds of America. Funeral Funds of America is a national life insurance provider licensed in all 50 states specializing in final expense life insurance.
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Thank you so much for giving us your time! Before we begin, could you introduce yourself to our readers and take us through what exactly your company does and what your vision is for its future?
Randy VanderVaate: I’m Randy VanderVaate, president and owner of Funeral Funds of America, a life insurance brokerage based in Dallas, Texas. We specialize in helping people find a first-day coverage plan to pay for their burial and final expenses.
I started my life insurance agency in 2015 and started training other agents. My goal is for my company to become a Brokerage General Agency in the future
NO child ever says I want to be a CEO/entrepreneur when I grow up. What did you want to be and how did you get where you are today?
Randy VanderVaate: When I was a child, I wanted to be a business owner of some type but ended up exchanging my time for dollars for much of my life. Before starting my own business, I worked in the golf industry. From a high school summer job at age 17, I worked my way into becoming a Vice President in a national golf course company.
In 2015 began my journey as a life insurance agent and became a top 10 rookie producer in our agency. I decided to build my agency from the ground up.
Tell us something about yourself that others in your organization might be surprised to know.
Randy VanderVaate: Something people might be surprised about is that I hold certifications in the following: Associate Certified Coach (ACC) with the International Coach Federation, Certified Professional Career & Life Coach (CPC) with the International Coach Acadamy (ICA), and a Certified Career Management Coach (CCMC) with the Career Coach Academy.
Many readers may wonder how to become an entrepreneur but what is an entrepreneur? How would you define it?
Randy VanderVaate: I believe entrepreneurs are made, not born. People learn skills before they become entrepreneurs. These skills are not inherent in a person, and they are discovered and honed over the years.
An entrepreneur is someone who starts a business because they choose to accept risk and failure on their terms, not an employer’s terms.
What is the importance of having a supportive and inclusive culture?
Randy VanderVaate: Having a supportive and inclusive culture embraces people regardless of their color, race, or sexual orientation. An inclusive culture allows each individual to be themselves without fear and contribute to a company’s success.
How can a leader be disruptive in the post covid world?
Randy VanderVaate: How a leader responds during this time of disruption will define what kind of leader they are. A true leader can be disruptive by being bold, different, passionate, and taking appropriate risks to succeed while growing people and talent within a company.
If a 5-year-old asked you to describe your job, what would you tell them?
Randy VanderVaate: My job is to help older people be happy, knowing that their family will not be hurt when someone goes to heaven.
Share with us one of the most difficult decisions you had to make for your company that benefited your employees or customers. What made this decision so difficult and what were the positive impacts?
Randy VanderVaate: The most difficult decision I made for the company was using my personal money to invest in customer-oriented technology. By doing so, I’m always taking a calculated risk by betting on myself and my ability to win at whatever goals I set.
One example is a complex phone system I invested in that proved to be productive and profitable in the long run, as it saved us time in calling prospects. It also allows us to make more calls and close sales.
Leaders are usually asked about their most useful qualities but let’s change things up a bit. What is your most useless talent?
Randy VanderVaate: My most useless talent is overworking. I tend to drive myself to work long hours when I have new ideas. I won’t stop working until everything is 100 perfected and I’m exhausted.
In most cases, I’m better off getting a project 80% completed and then implementing and optimizing to get the last 20% completed. This makes me and my team much more effective and prioritizes progress over perfection.
Thank you so much for your time but before we finish things off, we do have one more question. If you wrote a book about your life until today, what would the title be?
Randy VanderVaate: “The view is great from here, but wait until I get where I’m going!”
Jed Morley, VIP Contributor to ValiantCEO and the host of this interview would like to thank Randy VanderVaate for taking the time to do this interview and share his knowledge and experience with our readers.
If you would like to get in touch with Randy VanderVaate or his company, you can do it through his – LinkedIn page.
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