Author Archive for Sam Glenn, The Attitude Guy

Do You Stand or Kneel?

The other day, I drove past a gigantic American Flag in Carmel Indiana. It was dancing in the cool breeze. I started to think about everything that is going on with the NFL and players kneeling during our National Anthem and how it has spread to sporting events at all levels.
Here is my take on it all:

When my 3-year-old daughter asks me why we stand and honor our flag and country during the National Anthem, it is something I can explain with clarity. It’s a uniting purpose. It is tied to the sacrifices made by men and woman who laid down their life so we could live in a free country and have the freedom and rights we do … like kneeling during the National Anthem.

We have that freedom and right to kneel, but the question is – should we exercise that right in that specific moment? When we stand for the National Anthem, it’s a moment that we all stand together in unity, strength and honor. It’s not about politics, race, religion or sex – it’s about honor, respect and character.

However, when 13 random football players kneel and my daughter asks me why, I have no simple answer. NONE. Each has their own personal agenda as to why they choose to kneel. However, do the kneelers not realize that the millions of fans watching also have a reason and right to kneel as well? (I will explain that in a minute) Maybe when a player kneels, their “intention” isn’t to be selfish, but it’s still a personal choice that has personal and public consequences. You can’t escape that truth. But, it is still your right…a right that was provided at a cost.

The bigger picture

There isn’t a single one of us who doesn’t have some unique reason to kneel during the National Anthem. Think about it, if you have a heart, you are aware that our world is not perfect and it is filled with injustice, so does kneeling help or hurt the injustice we see or feel called too? For the sake of unity, is there a better approach to getting a better result?

The presentation of kneeling gets attention, but is it getting the job done? Isn’t that the actual goal-to get something accomplished or make something happen?

The saddest part to this picture is now people are kneeling because they think it’s trendy. They do it to get attention. (It’s not trendy at all.) The moment you kneel is the moment you communicate to everyone standing, “I have my own personal agenda in this moment, so I choose not to stand with you.”

And now, Colin Kapernick is suing the NFL for keeping him out of the NFL. He calls it collusion, but isn’t it really more of a leadership choice based on the circumstance? Choices have consequences. The moment he sat and then eventually kneeled, he took the football out of football. It was no longer about beer and brats and fans and having fun. He made it about something else. He altered the focus and planted a distraction.

If I am an NFL owner or in a leadership role , I have a responsibility to eliminate distractions and keep everyone focused and headed in the right direction. Great leaders do not promote or fuel division and distractions in the workplace. This is true for any organization in any industry. Just watch an episode of Undercover Boss. Colin might have a lot left in the tank And be exceptionally talented, but anyone in leadership understands that distractions and division are what weaken a team, a company or a relationship. At the end of the day you might have a great heart and a good intention, but the truth remains distractions that lead to division do not win games.

What do those words really mean to us?

The National Anthem is a brief moment we are privileged to stand and demonstrate unity. It’s a showcase of strength. While each of us has our own unique reason to kneel, for a brief moment, we instead choose to rise and unite. That is how we persevere and conquer life’s injustices; we find strength in each other. Like the saying states, “The strength of the wolf is in the pack and the strength of the pack is in the wolf.”

The bottom line is, you have the right to kneel, but remember that right came at a significant price. When we stand, we stand united. It’s a moment that says we are stronger together than we are divided. I heard a quote the other day, “On one leg we limp, but with two legs we can sprint.”

We can always accomplish more if we come together and work together. The more divided we are, the weaker we become. If we are going to solve, correct or do anything about an injustice in our world, we can do more together. We can always do more when we create a plan, have a strategy, inspire, get involved, lend a hand, focus on what we can control, seek wisdom and think of the best presentation to create awareness and a call to action.

Be thankful and honor those who provided the right to kneel, because in China – if you kneel during their National Anthem or protest it, they give you an minimum 3 years in prison.

Lets take action and evolve our thinking by doing what unites us and makes us stronger. That is how we will rise up and defeat the injustices in the world. Again – UNITED WE STAND, DIVIDED WE FALL.

Remember – Attitude Changes Everything!


Sam Glenn, The Attitude Guyby Sam Glenn – The Attitude Guy
Award Winning Superhero Speaker, Author, Dad, Husband and Very Bad Golfer

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Not All Superheroes Wear Capes

They give people hope and strength

Most of my work is speaking at conferences and talking about what it means to be a real life superhero in the workplace. My hope is that by the end of my speech, people feel more inspired to use the best of who they are and what they have to make a positive contribution. One of my key points is that not all superheroes wear capes. It’s not an original point, but the content is. It just fits right, especially after I speed paint my favorite superhero – Batman!

The phrase “Not all Superheroes Wear Capes” has been floating around for decades and is credited to a superhero named Anonymous. Nobody owns it – meaning, we all have an equal share in it. The freedom in having that kind of ownership is that we can add our own interpretation as to what we believe that quote means to us. So, here is a little bit of mine.

Today, it seems any which way we look,
we see something disheartening.

Massive hurricanes, wildfires, earthquakes, and, most recently, the Vegas shooting. If you observe people watching the news at airports like I do, all you see are heads shaking back and forth. The looks on their faces say, “What in the world is going on?”

I had just finished my speech at an all company development day, and as I was meeting people afterward, I met a woman who was actually in the crowd when the Vegas shooting happened. She still seemed a little shaken by the experience. I mean, you could see it in her eyes. But she said something that seemed to diminish the fear in the experience, “Sam, it was scary, but what made a difference were a lot of good people showed up and helped out.”

The thing about real life superheroes is they give people hope and strength in the midst of something that bombards us with fear and tragedy. A real life superhero doesn’t wear a cape; rather, they use the best of who they are and what they have to make a positive contribution. People started lining up to give blood just hours after the Vegas shooting. That’s huge.

A real life superhero never asks,
“What’s the least I can do?”

No, a real life superhero rises up from the ashes and lends everything thing they’ve got in an effort to make a positive contribution.

I happen to believe we need more real life superheroes in our world – everyday people willing to take extraordinary actions.
As I tell my audiences in my speeches, “You don’t have to be perfect to be amazing!”

Real life superheroes are everyday people who do the seemingly little things, but with an exceptional heart and attitude.

  • It’s the single mom working two jobs to support her two teenage daughter,
  • it’s the young person who stands up and speaks out when they see someone being bullied,
  • the co-worker who helps you get stuff done so you can meet a deadline and get home to your family,
  • the person who lets you merge over in traffic,
  • the teacher who makes learning fun,
  • the friend who gives you their last dollar to help you get by,
  • the sales person who actually cares for you instead of pretending to be nice just to get your business,
  • the receptionist who smiles and makes you feel welcomed,
  • the leader who is personal and asks about your life, family, and goals,
  • the stranger who holds the door open when your hands are full,
  • the customer service agent who goes two extra miles to fix everything for you,
  • the neighbor who picks up your blown over trash can,
  • the first responders who go above and beyond,
  • the doctors and nurses who work as a team to save lives,
  • the police officer who pulls you over for speeding, but ends up praying with you because you lost your child to cancer,
  • and the list goes on and on.


Be Your Own Real Life Super HeroIt’s comforting to know there are real life superheroes around us.
They give us hope and strength to keep going.
They give us a reason to lift our heads up and believe that everything will be okay.


My encouragement to you reading this – you’ve got all the superpowers you need to make a difference. Extend the best of who you are and what you have, and you will make a bigger difference than you can imagine. My personal philosophy – Capes Optional.



By Sam Glenn, Award Winning Motivational Speaker and Author

Speaking engagement inquiries:

Ignite A Positive Attitude, 10 Unforgettable Quotes

Can our attitude really change everything?

For the past 20 years, I have been speaking at conferences, working with outstanding leaders and professional athletic teams on the topic of attitude. What I have learned is that our attitude is the main thing that affects everything. EVERYTHING! Our attitude plays one of the most significant roles in every aspect of our life. Everything follows our attitude. Our attitude is either working for us or it is working against us and we determine which every day. In fact, we all have certain skills, education, talents and abilities, but what drives us around every day is the attitude we choose. If our attitude isn’t working right, then nothing will be right.

In my newest book, Attitude Changes Everything, I focus on creating more awareness or mindfulness of how our attitude is working. Is your attitude rewarding you or making things worse for you?

Think about this for a second, how much would you pay your attitude to give a pep talk to your favorite sports team, 10 minutes before game time? Today, professional athletes make pretty good money, so why would they invest in making sure everyone has the right attitude? Hmmmm…it’s because attitude changes everything! Attitude is the ultimate game changer.

Attitude is our brand, logo, culture, leadership, service, product, communication and anything else you can think of. It really is!

words for attitudes

Do you know anyone who has ever worked with a negative co-worker or boss? They can tell you that attitude is a very big deal. For some people, they get physically sick because their workplace is so toxic. Why do you think Monday is the number one day for heart attacks? People are stressed out about going to a place to work that isn’t healthy or supportive. Attitude changes everything!

If you Google road rage videos, you will instantly see people who lack emotional management skills. Meaning, they let their heated attitude control their responses. They are reactive and make choices that lead to negative consequences.

If you have ever met someone who has been diagnosed with cancer or an illness, they will tell you that attitude is everything.

Here is an attitude quote from the late ESPN announcer, Stuart Scott, regarding his battle with cancer.

“When you die, it does not mean you lose to cancer.
You beat cancer by how you live, why you live and in the manner in which you live.”
– Stuart Scott

Our attitude becomes what we feed it.
10 Life Changing Attitude quotes that will Awaken Your Mindfulness to how incredible your attitude is.


  1. A positive attitude gives you power over your circumstances instead of your circumstances having power over you.

-Joyce Meyer

  1. Being positive in a negative situation is not naïve. It’s leadership.


  1. Life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it.

-Charles Swindoll


  1. The primary cause of unhappiness is never the situation but your thoughts about it.

-Eckhart Tolle


  1. Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of human freedoms – to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.

–Viktor E. Frankl

  1. Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self-esteem, first make sure you are not, in fact, surrounded by assholes.

–Sigmund Freud

  1. A positive attitude doesn’t stop adversity from knocking at the door. However, a better attitude gives us mental clarity, creativity and resilience to deal with life’s curve balls, learn from them, grow from them and move on from them.

– Sam Glenn, The Attitude Guy

  1. Happiness comes when we stop complaining about the troubles we have and offer thanks for all the troubles we don’t have.


  2. Your mind is a powerful thing. When you fill it with positive thoughts, your life will start to change.


  3. Drama does not just walk into your life. Either you create it, invite it, or associate with it.

There are more quotes I could post here, but these stand out to create some perspective on how valuable our attitude really is. Nobody can choose your attitude but you. You own your attitude and the results and stories it creates. Remember, a little bit of the right attitude can make a huge difference. Attitude changes everything!



By Sam Glenn,The Attitude Guy
Author, Attitude Changes Everything
Speaking engagement inquires:

10 Super Simple Ways to Boost Your Conference Opening and Closing Attendance

By Sam Glenn, the Attitude Guy

Simple Ideas Work

I want to share just a few very simple ideas that I know will help boost your attendance at both your opening and closing.  I am a big believer in simple. Planning an event requires many details that aren’t always simple, but complicating things is a recipe for a mess and more stress.

My simple ideas based on 20 years of opening and closing conferences for more than 2000 audiences and some as large as 75,000 people at stadium events.

Boost Conference Opening and
Closing Attendance:

1) Sometimes my clients will ask me (a presenter) to help promote their event on social media and post little videos to build the buzz for the conference.

    • If you follow The Rock on social media, he is always doing little videos to promote, thank and connect with his audience.
    • The result – it works!  Have people in leadership do this and presenters.
    • These videos don’t need a production crew – just a minute at most to connect and build a buzz for the event.

2) If you want attendees to stay until the very end, the very end should be smoking hot! 

Have you ever noticed that the number of people who stay until the very end of the conference is often times significantly less than those who started the conference?

WHY didn’t they plan to
stay in the first place?

There are a number of reasons people don’t stay until the end of a conference. Mostly it’s because they didn’t plan to stay in the first place.  It’s because:

  • The closing just isn’t worth sticking around for.
  • They don’t feel like they are going to miss out on anything special or valuable to them.

I know that sounds a little harsh, but it’s the ugly truth. People go off of past event experiences. So if past closings were not that great, the assumption and expectation of future closings will be the same as past ones, so I will take the early flight home.

The big question is, how do
you get people from leaving early?

Think of it this way, it’s the 4th of July and everyone gets in the car so you can find a great place to sit and watch the big fireworks display.  When you attend a fireworks display, it’s exciting at the start, but there is an even bigger feeling of excitement and expectation – the grand finale!!!

Have you ever seen crowds of people BOLT before the grand finale? No way!  You just know it’s going to be awesome. You can’t wait!  And yes, you end up sitting in traffic for an hour after it’s all over trying to get home, but it was worth it.

If you want a higher attendance at your closings, then you need to upgrade your closing to a grand finale experience.


One example we can learn from is a group that had me as their closing keynote presenter, had 2000 people registered for the conference, yet only 150 showed up at the closing.

Do you know how weird and awkward that is speaking to 150 people scattered throughout a room that is purposed to fit 2000 people?  It’s not a good site.  There is no energy or in depth connection that captivates you. Most people at this event sat in the back of the conference hall, while exhibitors packed up and were loud and distracting. The lesson is the planning team just didn’t see the closing as “big deal” and when this happens; nobody else will see it as a big deal, so why stick around?

People will stay when it’s a big deal.  Finish strong!
Remember, it’s not how we start a race,
but how we finish that matters.

3)  Get feedback.

Since every group and industry does things differently; I think the best place to start is by asking people point blank, “What type of closing would have to happen in order for you to miss your flight and want to stay until the very end?”

It’s easy to get this in a survey, but have people in leadership roles connect with a personal touch and ask this.  Doing this will give you an idea of what a great closing session can be to your particular group.

4)  Offer extra educational credits.

But, offering extra credits for your industry can definitely increase attendance at the start and finish of your conference.  It doesn’t have an emotional “wow” factor, but it can logically work to motivate people to stay until the very end of the event.

5)  Do Door Prizes Right.
Bigger Prizes Aren’t Always Better

The bigger the door prize doesn’t always mean a bigger attendance at the end.  I just remember at one conference, this one attendee won a huge 65 inch TV. Most people would be excited with such a win, but she was not. Her response was, “How the hell do I get this thing home? Who is going to pay for shipping? I’m not!” She wasn’t happy.

I think the best door prizes for the best responses are gift cards, gift certificates to experiences like travel or the prized favorite- cash!

People love cash – who doesn’t?
Cash is always king when it comes to
door prizes. It just is.

One company I worked for did table cash drawings – it was pretty awesome and expensive.  So, how it worked was they had 100 tables in the room (10 people per table) and during the closing, they would randomly pick a number out of a hat – so if they called table 3, the entire table would go up and get a cash prize.  It gets cooler!  Before they picked the table number, they pulled another number out of a hat and that was the amount everyone at the table would each win.  So some tables won $25 each, $50 and $100.

However, what really got the blood flowing in the room was when they did the cash drawings for $250,$500 and $1000.  So if 10 people are sitting at a table and your number gets called – everyone at that table is going to get $1000 cash! I know that’s insane!  I don’t even work for that company, but I want to go to their closings every year.

Some tables were designated for higher rewards and people could win seats at those tables throughout the conference.  It was like you were on “The Price Is Right”.  This is an expensive way to do a closing, but wow – what a grand finale!  It works! People stay!  In fact, this closing becomes a marketing tool that more people want to sign up early for next year’s conference.  They make it fun, entertaining, rewarding – it’s a grand finale! 

The group I just closed for in North Dakota did something like this, they did a drawing of 50 names and those people walked up and got $100 cash.  The closing had the most attendance they have ever had because they built it up and made it worth the stay.

Even if you have a tight budget,
you can be creative and find ways
to make your opening and closing
segments memorable.

When I hosted a National Leadership Conference in Chicago, we had a shoe string budget, so one thing we did was move our event site from a hotel location to a meeting site that was just a different setting than the norm.  That was a big draw for us.  Our attendees loved it!  Mostly because it wasn’t like every type of conference they have ever been too.  We had to think creative to make it a great event and we did.

6)  Network and find out what others are doing at their closings.

  • You may pick up 2 or 3 really good ideas that will improve your closing attendance and make you look like a rock star.
  • Always be looking for ideas and asking what others are doing.
  • It doesn’t mean you mimic what others are doing, but rather take an idea and tweak it a little.

7)  Wrapping up the conference in the evening, so the next day people can get back home or back to work at a reasonable time.

  • I know this isn’t always possible, but when it is–attendees tend to stay until the last event or function if it goes into the evening.
  • Maybe offer breakfast and do a short wrap at breakfast the next day, so people can get on the road.
  • I personally think it’s a tough wrap to do at lunch.  Many do it and I tip my hat to them, but it makes for a tougher closing. For some reason, a closing lunch seems to draw a lower crowd attendance.

8)  For really strong opening and closings, I suggest to upgrade your speakers and presenters.

Have you ever eaten something with little to no flavor?  It’s not enjoyable is it?  Well, some conference openings and closings have no flavor to them. Nobody is going to line up to taste something that has no flavor.

I often share with event planners, the reason why conference rooms fill up from the back of the room first is people just don’t trust the stage.  Attendees want to separate themselves from potential boredom and the unexpected.

They want a spot where they can play on their phone, easily get up and walk out, blend in or just not be caught drifting off to sleep, doodling or daydreaming.

Remember, positioning of speakers
for your opening and closing
segments is everything!


Most of my clients hire me as a kick off presenter because they know I’m going to set a tone and energy for the rest of the event.  As you research speakers, you want someone that draws people in, has energy, captivates, and is memorable.  I can’t stress that aspect enough – It has to be memorable.

So maybe don’t kick things off with a social media expert or wrap things up with a futurist.  You get the picture. My advice, upgrade the stage experience.  Just because someone is a bestselling author and their demo clips seem good, doesn’t always mean they are a good kick off or closing presenter.  You want them to have the fourth of July Power to their presentation – where people show up early to get a good seat and don’t leave before the grand finale.  Remember, positioning of presentations and presenters is the key.

9.  Have an engaging and proactive theme for your event.

Some groups have a simple theme and build around it.  But a very proactive theme can take your event energy to a new level.

When I wrote the book, Be Your Own Superhero – how to be a real life superhero in leadership, service and life, my clients started using that theme for their events.  People dressed as their favorite superhero. They had contest. They had ice breakers and activities and giveaways customized around this theme.  Having a theme like this makes your event more memorable and engaging.

Trust me – this is awesome.  My superhero theme is a hit.  If you do it, you need to give me credit!  Being an everyday superhero is one of my most requested speeches – and it’s really good.

10.  This is the most important factor and sometimes the hardest – be consistent with your kick off and grand finale.

If you are starting from scratch and making some upgrades, don’t expect 100% buy in from everyone at once.  It takes time to achieve momentum and progress.  That is okay, if you are consistent with your efforts and make your opening and closing awesome, you will notice an increase in attendance at both your openings and closings. The other benefit to this is it becomes a huge selling point that gets people excited about coming back the next year, early registrations, attracts new members and more people wanting to attend.

In closing, planning a conference
or large event isn’t easy.

You are trying to make many different personalities happy and that isn’t always an easy job.  Sometimes that pat on the back isn’t going to be there, but someone complaining about something will be.  My advice is to not complicate what is meant to be kept simple.  But have fun doing it!  When you are having fun, it’s going to turn out so much better for you and others.  My wife always tells me before every speech, “Sam, just have fun. If you have fun, everyone will have fun.”

Sometimes you gotta step out of the comfort zone and try new things or do things different than prior years.  Some things may work and some may not. Just keep learning. Do the best you can and always remember the best pat on the back is the one you give yourself!

Sam Glenn keynote motivational speakerAbout Sam Glenn, The Attitude Guy
For the past 20 years, Sam Glenn has become recognized as a meeting planner’s delight. Sam’s speeches are award winning, his books are top sellers and he also is a talented performance artist.  Sam has been named Speaker of the Year several times by different meeting and event organizations and magazines.  

For more information on booking Sam Glenn, the Attitude Guy for your conference or meeting kick off, visit:  Or email his office:

Heart Thoughts

Tru!!!! #quoteoftheday #samglenn #inspirationalspeaker #inspiration

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