Best-selling Author, Speaker, Trainer, and Strategist, Deb Cheslow, teaches her audiences how to quantum leap into success.
Peak performance expert, Deb Cheslow, is the highly accomplished CEO of Cheslow Achievement Group. As a speaker, trainer and strategist, she delivers a life-changing message to help people get un-stuck and take a quantum leap toward success. Through her best-selling books, speaking engagements, programs, and online presence, this energetic expert helps organizations, teams and companies go from duress to success by implementing the winning principles she teaches. With clients all over the world, the information she conveys is based on real life “been there, done that” experiences and has proven to help others improve multiple aspects of their lives.
Cheslow holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Aerospace and Ocean Engineering from Virginia Tech and went into the Air Force becoming an instructor pilot flying advanced supersonic jets. With an original goal of advancing through the ranks to enter the NASA space shuttle program, the next step for Cheslow would have been test pilot school, then on to become an Astronaut. However, she relates how that plan became secondary, “My primary goal my entire life was to have a family and to raise my kids myself. Family has always been very important to me and always will remain important. At the point where I would have applied for test pilot school, I was married and pregnant and decided to take the family route instead so that I wouldn’t be gone more than I was at home.”
After leaving the Air Force to focus on family, Cheslow took a part time job at a construction company doing project estimating while her children were in school. This position eventually evolved into a management position at that company which was followed by an opportunity to start her own “green building” consulting company, with the State of Virginia’s premier green building program as her main client. As the years progressed, Cheslow evaluated her skills and talents as she was moving through the evolutionary phases of entrepreneurism. She states, “I’ve always been a teacher/trainer at heart. That’s at my core, that’s my passion. Every job I’ve ever had I’ve gravitated toward instructing. My thrill is when I can watch a client or student achieve something they never thought was possible. It’s an instructor’s dream for a student to surpass the instructor.”
Cheslow has been a successful woman in a man’s world. Her significant accomplishments as an Air Force advanced supersonic pilot and instructor, green building consultant, karate instructor and high school varsity coach have predominately been areas where men have excelled. She says, “I’ve been in a man’s world most of my life, but I don’t think about it that way. I don’t think about obstacles and pre-conceived notions. When I decide to go after something, I just do it. So, when I decided to be an Air Force pilot, it didn’t matter to me that there never was a female pilot from Virginia Tech despite its over one-hundred year military history. I was the first female Air Force pilot to ever graduate from Virginia Tech.”
She continues, “In Karate, every step of the way I set goals for myself. Today, I break stacks of bricks that most men wouldn’t even attempt. Again, that doesn’t matter to me. It was my goal and I found a way to do it. I have applied the same techniques throughout my business career whether it was helping to revolutionize the green building industry in the state of Virginia, coaching at the high school varsity level, or anything else in my life. I am guided by proven techniques that I now teach to others. Now it’s even more exciting because I’m taking those same concepts and empowering teams, businesses and organizations to quantum leap to the next level. For me it’s all the same thing. It’s the same passion to teach, grow, and create. I am absolutely impassioned about teaching others to take their lives and their businesses to new levels they didn’t think were possible.”
Cheslow comments, “I’m not a remarkable person. I’ve just done things that others perceive to be remarkable. I believe everyone, every team and every organization has the ability to be wildly successful. The problem is that we’re taught to use logic. We are taught to weigh the pros and cons, to play it safe, to take baby steps, to be careful and not to take a risk. In my opinion, that’s silly advice and it’s backwards. Logic is an accumulation of your past experiences and your present knowledge. How can you use your past to go somewhere you’ve never been or do something you’ve never done before? That just doesn’t make sense. Unfortunately, what often happens when you set out to achieve this new level in your business, organization or your personal life, logic rears its ugly head and scares you. It sends up all the fear of the unknown and most people are paralyzed by that fear. My systemized strategy basically gives people the courage they need to put logic aside and take big action that produces big results. People misunderstand courage. Courage is not the absence of fear. I’m scared to death almost every day as I pursue these big new goals. Courage is acting in spite of your fear and my strategy helps you find that courage. I ask people, ‘Where would your life, your business or your organization be if every time you said, ‘I should,’ you actually did?’ I am teaching people to put logic aside and take action.”
When transitioning from the military world to the civilian world, Cheslow faced a surprising dichotomy. She elaborates, “When I left the Air Force and entered the business world it was very frustrating for me. It was like entering an alien world. I found myself wondering how anyone ever got anything done. It was like they were always flying by the seat of their pants. Over the years as I’ve had the opportunity to get behind the scenes at companies of all sizes and have come to realize that 95% of businesses fail within the first five years, and the ones that are still around are struggling, because they’ve lost sight of the main pillars of success: discipline, accountability, standards, and systems. Systems are the glue that ties it all together. I share a system I learned in the Air Force teaching people how to fly advanced supersonic jets. A system based on those four pillars. It’s a system used by the Air force consistently since its inception and it creates phenomenal results. The best part is that it’s a system that can be duplicated in any team, business or organization that wants to get to the next level and reach their peak performance.”
Cheslow has watched numerous successes as a result of individuals applying her proven strategies. Entire groups have dynamically changed as a result of the implementation of the four pillars of success she teaches. She remarks, “When I’m giving a keynote speech or conducting a training or strategy session and sharing these pillars, I see the same scenario play out time and time again. I address the team goal, but in the room I can see the light bulbs go off on an individual level because the concepts I teach tend to grab each person at their core. So what happens is that all those individuals don’t just take the concepts I am teaching, get hyped up about it at that moment, then forget about it in a week. They don’t just put a few of my systems in place to better their job or take their professional life further. But, they start applying these principles in all areas of their lives. Think about the power of that. If every person in your organization or company is quantum leaping on a personal basis, then the organization as a whole can’t help but just explode forward. I see it time and time again.” She continues, “I am basically telling people to have the courage to put logic aside. Logic is based on the past and it’s guaranteed to keep you stuck. If you stay strong, stay focused, dream big and really learn these four foundational pillars along with putting in place the systems and tools I provide, you can’t help but to achieve phenomenal things.”
Cheslow has built awareness of her programs and products through an all inclusive media approach including internet marketing, social media, website, television, radio, print, trade shows, health fairs, health and wellness shows, speaking to groups, and networking. She was recently named as one of the most influential business women in the region. Because of the coaching and corporate consulting she has done worldwide, she has a reputation that what she teaches works. She has become successful by practicing courage, persistence, and determination. She exercised the courage to put logic aside and pursue her passion. She comments, “In my mind, failure is not an option. I will do whatever it takes to be successful. I always look at things in terms of ‘How can I?’ I never look at things as ‘Why can’t I?’”
Cheslow adds, “I have an internal motivation to excel. I have a burning desire to accomplish things. I always have to be challenged, to be pursuing something big, and to be growing. I very much believe in the philosophy that you can’t stand still. If you are not growing, accomplishing and creating, you are disintegrating. When I combine that drive with my passion for teaching and coaching and my passion for health and wellness, it all just comes together in a business to help other people succeed.”
The sincerity of Cheslow is very evident when you engage her in conversation. She explains in a very compassionate tone, “This is my overarching passion in life, to help people create better lives for themselves in their relationships, their physical body, their finances, and every aspect of their lives. There is so much doom and gloom out there these days. If I can just show people that there is hope and they are fully capable of creating whatever results they want, that would be the ultimate for me.”
As an example of how sheer determination can propel you to success, Cheslow and her business partner, Angie Flynn, recently took on the challenge of participating in a 125 mile cycling competition. Neither one even owned a bike until two months before the race. However, after purchasing bikes and a short period of training, Cheslow took first place in the competition and Flynn took second place.
Cheslow has many accomplishments to her credit. She is a best-selling co-author of the books, The Simple Success Solution, and Release – The Simple Success Solution for Real and Permanent Weight Loss, and the book, Overcome Dysthymia – Break Free and Create a Life You Love. Her fourth book, Remarkable Courage – A Systemized Strategy for Success, shares a simple strategy that incorporates the four foundational pillars of success to propel people, companies and organizations forward. Cheslow is a 3rd degree black belt instructor in Chinese Kempo Karate. She is a Certified Business Consultant and Facilitator. She has appeared on numerous radio programs nationally as an expert in her field and has spoken at dozens of venues throughout the country.
(by Tim Mitchell, January, 2013)