In July 2015, I had the pleasure of being interviewed on Faith Positive Radio by my friends and colleagues Dr. Joey Faucette and Mike Van Vranken. They asked me to share with their listeners how I integrate my faith into my work and how I face challenges. I invite you to read and listen and to “Speak Your Mind” in the comment box below. Thank you and bless you!
CLICK HERE to listen to the interview.
CLICK HERE to download the transcript.
Joey Faucette: Mike, have you ever talked to somebody the very first time you talked to them, you went, “Oh wow! I really like this person.” Has that ever happened to you?
Mike Van Vranken: Actually it happened the first time I ever talked to our guest today.
Joey Faucette: No kidding. I was going to say that. That was my line. You’re supposed to say…
Mike Van Vranken: I know but it really did happen with me so I thought I’d say it first.
Joey Faucette: She’s so easy to talk with. She is – are you ready? You’ve got to write this down, Mike, because this is an impressive list of credentials. She is a Professional Certified Coach with the International Coach Federation. That’s the Big Kahuna of all coaching certifications and this is the top certification. You’ve got that, Mike, Professional Certified Coach with ICF.
Mike Van Vranken: I got it.
Joey Faucette: She is also a Certified Professional Christian Coach with the Christian Coaches Network International. Did you write all that down? You can just put CCNI. And she is a Top 6 Expert. Faith Positive Nation, we are so blessed to have on our program today Jory Fisher. Jory, welcome to Faith Positive Radio.
Jory Fisher: You guys are making me smile just listening to your voices. How can anybody be down around you?
Joey Faucette: We don’t know. In fact, most people that do coaching or who want to do coaching, the thing they talk about is, “Why are you guys so positive?” But you are too. You’re absolutely one of the more positive guests on our program ever and we both have written for your blogs before. Mike is a regular contributor. I’m slack. I’m not a regular contributor.
Jory Fisher: Yes, but you’ve been on my radio show.
Joey Faucette: I have. Oh Mike has not been on your radio show.
Mike Van Vranken: No, I haven’t been invited, Joey. I’m not quite sure why.
Joey Faucette: Mike, let me talk to my people and see if I can wrangle you an invitation to be on Jory’s show. What’s the name of your… it’s on BlogTalkRadio right? What’s the name of your program?
Jory Fisher: It’s Heart & Soul for Women of Faith, and I’ve been doing it for almost seven years.
Joey Faucette: Seven years, wow. Have you got that seven-year itch yet?
Jory Fisher: Ha ha.
Joey Faucette: No? Give us that name again, Heart & Soul for who?
Jory Fisher: Women of Faith
Joey Faucette: Heart & Soul for Women of Faith. Where do I go to find that because Faith Positive Nation listens to multiple podcasts and so they are going to want to listen to yours too.
Jory Fisher: Thank you. Just BlogTalkRadio.com/JoryFisher.
Joey Faucette: Wonderful. You live in Bel Air, Maryland.
Jory Fisher: I do.
Joey Faucette: That’s your home base of operation. Tell us a little bit about your work. I mean, you’ve got two major coaching certifications and you’re a Top 6 Expert. Tell us a little bit about what your work looks like.
Jory Fisher: It is so much fun. It is really great. I mean, for years now, I’ve been out on my own as a coach. I left the practice of law. I was a law professor, a founding faculty member actually of Liberty University School of Law but I left….
Joey Faucette: Uh-oh. Wait a second. Do we need to sign waivers to have you on today or anything, or is there any kind of legal documentation we should have gotten, Mike?
Jory Fisher: You probably should have, but we’re going to just forge ahead. Lucky for you, I no longer practice law because I moved from Virginia to Maryland three years ago. I decided not to practice law anymore. I’m going to let you off the hook at this point.
Joey Faucette: So you’re a reformed attorney, is that what you’re saying?
Jory Fisher: That is what I’m saying. A former lawyer; but anyway, I have no idea what I was talking about.
Joey Faucette: You’re talking about what you do with your days and you were on the founding faculty of Liberty University.
Jory Fisher: Yes, yes, yes, and so I decided that, when I moved to Maryland, I’d become a full-time coach and no longer practice law. I’ve been doing that for three years and I have had the opportunity to work with wonderful, wonderful people, both my clients and my coaching mentors. Yes, I’ve been able to attain the certification of Professional Certified Coach through ICF. There is one more higher level which would be an MCC; I’m not going after that one. However, I do hope to become a Certified Master Christian Coach through CCNI, and I am working for that.
Anyway, what I used to do, however, was have all virtual clients and by that I mean do almost all of my coaching using just phone and computer, phone and the internet; but now here in Maryland and just recently, I have started building a more in-person practice which has been delightful. I have a mastermind going here in Baltimore. We operate out of the Baltimore County Chamber of Commerce in Towson, Maryland.
I have started up an in-person mastermind. It’s a year-long program and it’s through the Top 6 Club, the Top 6 Program, and you are wondering what that is all about. Sadly, you may know this statistic yourself but only 6% of entrepreneurs truly thrive in America and that is something that I help my clients do. It’s really, really wonderful. That is the Top 6 Club and I am not only doing that in person, but we have a virtual component as well.
Joey Faucette: So who is your client? I mean, who would we see in your Top 6 Mastermind Group or something like that? Who is there?
Jory Fisher: Well, what we do is we work with service providers. So if you have a wonderful retail shop for example on Main Street, you probably wouldn’t be interested in what we do. Also, you need to be in a position of making your own decisions for your business. That’s why I say “solopreneurs” more so than a “regular” business owner if there is such a thing. So a service-based solopreneur, and I also like to say purpose-guided because I am all about faith and purpose, as I believe you all know, and integrating faith into your work, integrating purpose into your work. So if you are a purpose-guided, service-based solopreneur, then let’s talk.
Joey Faucette: Okay, a service-based solopreneur. So what industry do people come to you out of? Give us an example.
Jory Fisher: Coaches, consultants, massage therapists, graphic designers. You can be an attorney, you can be a dentist, but if you provide a service and you’re your own boss, then let’s talk.
Joey Faucette: Okay.
Jory Fisher: We can help you.
Joey Faucette: All right. So would that be like we work with a ton of insurance and financial services professionals, they would qualify for your group as well?
Jory Fisher: If they are independent in the sense that they can make their own decisions about how they market, how they present themselves, how they develop their sales story, how they get their message out. If they can actually do those things without having to go back to a company and ask permission, then yes. See what I mean?
Joey Faucette: Yes, be like an independent insurance agent, something like that.
Jory Fisher: Correct.
Joey Faucette: As opposed to somebody contracted with a Fortune 50 company. Okay, got you.
Jory Fisher: Yes, and so if they live in the Baltimore Metropolitan area, then they can attend my live events. If they live outside of that area, I can still help them, but it would be almost all virtually. Now of course if they wanted to fly into Baltimore, I’m right close to BWI Airport. That’s awesome, or at least come for the two-day retreat. That would be great. I can definitely help people outside of the Baltimore area, but if you are in Baltimore, then I strongly recommend that you attend the live events.
Joey Faucette: Oh yes, live is always better. In person, right?
Jory Fisher: Yes.
Joey Faucette: That’s great. Now your radio show is Heart & Soul for Women of Faith. Do you really seek out clients who are female because obviously you have a unique perspective, I think, that you can offer to them? Do you seek out women primarily or is it male and female group?
Jory Fisher: Well, what happens is, as you know, we do have male guests because you, my dear, have been one of my more outstanding guests. I’m glad you brought that up.
Joey Faucette: You heard that, didn’t you, Mike? I have been one of her outstanding guests. Have you been on her show, Mike?
Mike Van Vranken: That’s why she hasn’t asked me because she wanted you to stay as the more outstanding guest.
Jory Fisher: Well, people come to the show and listen in. I know men are listening to our show. I know they are.
Joey Faucette: Yes they are. They just don’t tell anybody, right?
Jory Fisher: Yes, I mean for one reason, they kind of want to have a peek into the other world, you know? It’s like, “Okay, what are their secrets? What are they learning to be successful?”
Joey Faucette: That’s because we’re basically clueless about women, but other than that….
Jory Fisher: There you go, because I mean, I have had almost 400,000 listens over the years to my show so I’m pretty darn sure they aren’t all men. But we do pick topics that we know women are interested in, and we take topics which I highly suspect men are interested in as well. I mean, do you know any men who really want to be successful in business just per chance?
Joey Faucette: Have you met one, Mike?
Mike Van Vranken: Yes, and you know the thing that strikes you too is because you do have a unique perspective and women do face challenges that men don’t. So for anyone listening who is a male, but you’re a leader of women in your organization, the same thing is you do want to take a peek behind that curtain, if you will, and find out what those unique challenges that some women have in business and then from the Christian standpoint, from a Faith Positive standpoint how to face those challenges, how do they overcome some of them. So Jory’s organization is just as vital in my mind from a male perspective as a male coach as it is for your female clients that come to you.
Joey Faucette: I think even more so because it’s a very safe place for a male leader to come and to listen in, and to really pick up some inside tips and secrets; at least when I’ve looked into it, that’s what I found. That’s a great point, Mike. That really is.
One of the things I really appreciate about you, Jory, is that you integrate faith and work, and of course that’s what Mike and I are all about. It’s helping Christian business professionals increase their faith with greater joy at work so they love God and others more. In your work, obviously, faith greatly impacts your work. Tell us a little bit about how you came to that.
Jory Fisher: I was very happy as a lawyer and very happy as a law professor and associate dean. Everything was going well. Then we had some interesting things happen “politically” at the law school so it wasn’t quite as happy an environment as it had been when we first started the law school, but I was hanging in there. Then lo and behold, I went to the doctor one day for my physical and I said, “You know, doc. I’m still having these palpitations.” I’ve had them for quite a few years. I’d been hooked up to a heart monitor. We hadn’t found anything but I mentioned it again at my physical. He said, “Maybe we should get you an echocardiogram.” I said, “Okay, that’s cool.” I went and had an echocardiogram.
You know how nurses are trained not to give any indication whatsoever that there are any problems? There were three people in there and I didn’t see anything weird on their faces as they were doing this so I’m thinking, “Oh, it’s fine.” Well, I never heard anything back and, lesson learned, never assume that when you don’t hear anything about a test result that it’s fine. So we proceed. I don’t know, three months or so go by. I was sick so I had to go back to the doctor, and I said, “By the way, doc, I’m assuming that my echocardiogram turned out fine, right?” He said, “Just a second; let me check on that.”
He came back, his face was white as a sheet. He pulls down a paper towel to write on and grabs his pen, because this was his paper at his office. He starts drawing a heart, and that picture was not very pretty. It turned out, gentlemen, I had a giant hole in my heart and I learned that statistics said that there was 90% chance that I should have been dead or however you want to word that. But the thing was, I was still alive!
It turned out that there has just been a “little glitch” in communication, a communication breakdown. The doctor had never really seen that the report had come back and had never looked at it before, so I am really seeing it like right after he looked at it. He got me into a specialist the very, very next day, a cardiologist the very next day, and the cardiologist hadn’t seen the report until he was looking at it with me either. Sure enough, he was looking at it and he’s going, “You should be dead.” That was kind of interesting; that was kind of interesting.
Joey Faucette: Talk about lack of bedside manner.
Jory Fisher: I tell you what, I will never forget that as long as I live. I ended up really liking him, but I had to chuckle. So I asked what the “downtime” was for open heart surgery and they said 4 to 6 months, and of course I’m calculating. How am I going to continue to raise my children and help raise my stepchildren with that much downtime? But as it turned out, the good Lord led me to a pediatric cardiologist at the University of Virginia, Dr. Scott Lim. I will never forget him as long as I live. What an angel.
He was able to work on me in a way that did not involve open-heart surgery. That’s a whole show in and of itself. I was on a little gurney, a little stretcher looking up at dinosaurs up on the ceiling. They had to actually extend this gurney because it was for children and do a procedure on me that is now done in children because adults are dead usually.
Halleluiah, praise the Lord, I was saved and I ended up resigning from the law school after going through months of cardiac rehab and knew that the Lord was leading me in different direction. I hesitated leaving before because, for one thing, I was making an excellent salary and we had seven children between us, my husband and I did. It’s a little hard to leave that safety nest.
But I left, stepping out in faith to become a coach and I was still practicing law part-time. I had a part-time coaching business as I was growing it and a part-time practice of law, helping abused and neglected children, and combining those as I grew as a coach and as an entrepreneur. Then as we said earlier, a little bit later I left Lynchburg, Virginia to move to Bel Air three years ago and I have been doing full-time coaching, and teaching at the Professional Christian Coaching Institute, ever since.
Joey Faucette: Talk about a life-changing experience.
Mike Van Vranken: And you saw the calling that that life-changing experience was able to open a door for that you might not have ever seen had the whole experience played out the way it did. Even with the doctor seeing it for the first time and showing it to you, and the shock that goes with it and how God used that to call you. What a great story, that’s great.
Jory Fisher: Through the whole thing, I felt very calm and I think part of it was God wouldn’t have brought me this far just to let me die right now. We had to do a bunch of tests and I knew I was going to make it through the other side. I just knew it. I had a real peace about it and
Dr. Lim, as he was wheeling that gurney in to do the procedure on me, he said to my husband and me, “God obviously has a plan for your life.” I just knew I was in good hands and that God did!
I had already been coaching at the Law School. I had already started my life coaching certification and it was just then that I said, “Okay. Apparently God is calling me out into a different pasture and I don’t know if that’s going to be the Promised Land or not but I need to do this.” My husband was fully supportive.
Joey Faucette: When you’re going through that kind of experience, it results in that sort of life- changing decisions, one of the benefits that I hear you describing, Jory, is a certain peace and calm that comes from your faith.
Jory Fisher: Correct.
Joey Faucette: So that’s how you came into this coaching career. It was in a peaceful calm way out of that transition. All three of us have seen so many people in the midst of those kinds of life experiences. I mean not necessarily with a hole in your heart but maybe metaphorically with a hole in your heart – you’ve been laid off or something like that – you just got all the pieces. I have been there and done that. Anxiety just surrounds you and you cave into that. What was it, Jory, that allowed your faith to take hold of that piece and calm and really see God in that even as you were been wheeled into an OR?
Jory Fisher: With that OR thing, that just comes from a child-like faith that I have had had ever since I was a child. My dad was a Southern Baptist and my faith has always, always been important to me. I was involved in Young Life, Campus Crusade for Christ, Youth for Christ and all of that. Sure, like any person, I did tack a little bit. A little bit to the left, a little bit to the right. I kept coming back though. God wouldn’t let go of me, would not let go of me. I am just, I’m His child, and I just knew He would not let me go until my time was done here. I just had a real sense it was not done here yet.
Joey Faucette: The mission was still before you. You still had a purpose and you knew God would see you through.
Jory Fisher: Exactly.
Joey Faucette: It’s a beautiful expression of faith.
Jory Fisher: One of the cool things that happened after that, Joey and Mike, was I learned about an individual named Tim Kelley who created, with the Lord’s help, a process called the True Purpose™ process. It’s not just for Christians. When I first heard him talk about it, it sounded a little “out there,” a little too New Age for me. I was intrigued, but I was a little bit nervous, and then a good friend of mine said that she knew Tim. Her name is Susan Whitcomb, a very strong Christian and very big in the career coaching world, and I trusted her judgment. She just spoke very highly of Tim and said that she thought he had been anointed by God.
I listened to Tim again and had some conversations with him and I thought, “You know what, even if there are a lot of people who are going through this process who are not Christian – and there is a lot of vernacular here that I’m not comfortable with – I just really have a strong sense this is what I’m meant to do, and absolutely so true. I went through it. I became certified in the True Purpose™ process myself. I asked Tim and I said, “You know, some of these documents here would be very off-putting I think to Christians. Is it okay if with Susan Whitcomb’s help, if she and I would edit some of these documents to make them more applicable to the Christian faith?” He said, “Sure, absolutely. Have at it.” He was involved as well.
The True Purpose™ process helps a person get really clear on their essence, which is who they are at their core; their blessing, which is a transformational process they’re meant to do over and over again to effect positive change in the lives of people; their mission, which is the problem that they are meant to solve or the task they’re meant to perform at this stage of their life; and their message which is the wisdom they are meant to share with the world. It took me a couple of years, 18 to 20 months or so, to get certified in that process. I use it with all of my clients and it’s been a true blessing for me and it has really touched the lives of many, many people. That’s how purpose and faith come together for me.
Joey Faucette: It’s obvious that you live on purpose because you can tell these stories and talk about these things and your faith just shine right through. So as a coach, what kind of challenges are you facing? What are you facing being a coach?
Jory Fisher: Well, a big one for me is being a solopreneur. I never complained about getting up and going to work even if it wasn’t a job that I loved. I had a full-fledged career for five years in the federal government before I went to law school and then a full-fledged career as an attorney for almost 20 years. I’m actually 95.
Joey Faucette: Wow, I want to take the vitamins she’s taking because you look good for 95 to me.
Jory Fisher: I never complained about going to work even if I had a long commute. Sometimes I fell asleep in the subway but I never complained about going to work. Why? Because I love people. A challenge for me has been working from home. I love my dogs. They are at my feet right now as I’m recording this with you. Actually, the exciting thing is I have a daughter at home, which is really cool. She surprised me and it’s a surprise visit, so that’s fun. But most of the time I work from home and that has been a challenge for me, and it’s one of the reasons why I’m now so excited about the mastermind group I’m doing as a Top 6 Expert because it is getting me out and about.
I’m doing more networking and of course being with my clients in person which I love. So that is definitely a challenge. A second challenge is the whole thing about keeping a full pipeline. I know you gentlemen are familiar with this. Just it’s the nature of the beast when you’re an entrepreneur, a solopreneur. Even if you have a storefront business, you want people to keep coming in that door not just once a week. It’s a weird concept to think that, “Okay, I’m working with all the clients I need right now. But what if they stop coaching with me in six months then who do I have?” So while you’re coaching you also need to be marketing and keeping that full pipeline.
Joey Faucette: Absolutely. If you try to do it all yourself, then you find yourself in these “feast or famine cycles” are what I call them. So you get all the clients you want, like you’re talking about, then suddenly you have no clients because clients come and go. They all rotate. Regardless whether you are talking coaching or you run a tire store. People are going to shop for tires and sometimes they buy from the same store and other times they buy from a different store.
So how do you market while you are providing a service becomes the real challenge for service- oriented professionals. Our friend Jim Palmer does a good job of helping people understand that as anybody. We’ve had Jim on the show before and he’s constantly talking about marketing and finding automated ways of marketing. He’s my “go to” guy on that. If any of you are listening, you can go to GetJimPalmer.com. He’s absolutely wonderful to have. You face this cycle of clients coming in and out, which can, in the down times, produce some anxiety as well. How does your faith shape your response to these challenges, Jory?
Jory Fisher: It has definitely been an adjustment for me, Mike and Joey, because for the most part when I was an attorney, I didn’t have to worry. Well, I never had to worry about getting clients. Why? I was an Assistant County Attorney representing Department of Social Services in Fairfax County. No shortage of clients there. I was a Public Defender and a Legal Aid attorney in Lynchburg, Virginia. No shortage of clients there.
It’s funny, when there is crime and poverty and you can get a free attorney, you just don’t really have to worry about building that pipeline. I had to pray about it and just really have an attitude adjustment, and actually I have to pray about it regularly because it can still be something that we have to deal with no matter who you are, what stage of business. I also very much had to pray about getting a strong business mentor. I’ve had different ones as I’ve gone through this entrepreneurial journey and I do have to be careful.
I know you’re familiar with Myers-Briggs. I am an ENFJ. So extroverted and then we have intuition and we have feeling and we have J for judging, which means I like things very ordered. But that Feeling, I’m 30 out of 30, which means that my natural inclination is to make all of my decisions just based on how I feel about it. You’ve got to be careful when you’re a business owner about that. I have signed up with business coaches, business mentors in the past, just because I felt good around them. Let me just say, that’s not a good idea.
Joey Faucette: So your faith impacts your business. It shapes your challenges and the responses that’s in your business by calling on all of who God has created you to be, your head and your heart, when it comes to decision making.
Jory Fisher: Yes, exactly. You can’t just go by your feelings. You have to pray about and also do your due diligence. Do research. When we add the T to that, if you’re not an F you’re a T. When you’re an F you need to think about your T, which is Thinking, which is power.
Joey Faucette: How do you feel about your T? That’s a question.
Jory Fisher: Exactly. An example would be that I’ve come to now realize that before I make a decision like that, I need to think about what is an apt percentage that I should think about investing in my business on business development? I’ve done my research and I’ve thought it through. I’m not just feeling this, but 10%-15% is actually a good number. I have paid way more than that, way more than that, which was too much and I have paid too little which is too little. So you just really need to think that through and pray about it. That is one of the ways that faith and thinking has entered into my business decision-making.
Mike Van Vranken: You bring out such a great point because so many people listening, we all have, I’m going to say this challenge that you’re talking about right now and we’ve been talking about. You don’t do it on your own. You find people to collaborate with that we talk about in the conceive core practice that has to help you. Even though you’re this top certified coach, both as a Christian, both as a businesswoman, as an attorney and yet you have to find those companions to walk with you and help you just like any professional does. Then you still take steps in faith that you’re going to pray about it and think about it and use all of the gifts, not only that God’s have given you, but He has given some of the companions that you walk with. It never ends and it’s not supposed to end because it helps us realize we have to be reliant on God and we have to be reliant on the people He puts in our paths to make these kind of decisions. This is a great piece of conversation.
Joey Faucette: It helps me too, Mike and Jory, because I have to constantly remind myself and I’m sure you guys don’t have this problem, but it’s not about me. It’s about God first and then the people that God brings to me who is part of their divine design of giving expression through their work to what it is that God put them here to do, their unique contribution. So putting together that Faith Positive dream team becomes a real privilege because look at who God is sending to me? That’s how Mike and I got together. God sent us together, put us together, and lo and behold, we wrote this #1 bestselling book. We get to talk to wonderful people like you. It works so much better than if I had made it all about me and tried to mastermind the whole thing myself. So thank God that God is so generous in providing people like the two of you in my life.
Mike Van Vranken: Amen.
Joey Faucette: I’m so grateful for that. Jory, tell Faith Positive listeners how they can get in touch with you, because I know somebody listening today wants to get in touch with you. How can we do that? We already talked about BlogTalkRadio show. that’s BlogTalkRadio.com/JoryFisher. Wonderful. So that’s how we can listen to your show.
Jory Fisher: As long as you can spell Jory and as long as you can spell Fisher you’re going to find me. So go to my website, that’s JoryFisher.com
Joey Faucette: You don’t have to spell it by the way. You can just look at the notes about this show and its right there. In fact it’s even in the interview headline.
Jory Fisher: You can also email Jory@JoryFisher.com.
Joey Faucette: Faith Positive Nation always wants to know, what is your favorite Bible verse or Bible passage? We know that that’s a tough decision because there is all these books and all these verses to choose from. What’s your go-to?
Jory Fisher: I do find myself frequently thinking about, especially if I’m a little nervous about something, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” I also love, “The joy of the Lord is your strength.” Is that Nehemiah?
Mike Van Vranken: It’s either 10:8 or 8:10. I get it confused, but it’s Nehemiah either 10:8 or 8:10.
Jory Fisher: Cool. I think about those a lot, and then of course, see, I can’t do just one.
Joey Faucette: You’ve done two so far.
Jory Fisher: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and He will direct thy paths.” So Proverbs 3:5-6. So I guess those are my three go-to’s.
Joey Faucette: You’re not the first guest to do this.
Mike Van Vranken: We need them all.
Joey Faucette: It takes some more for me, that’s for sure. I think that’s why there are 66 books. Jory Fisher, what a delight it has been for Mike and myself to have you as our guest on Faith Positive Radio today. Jory Fisher, Professional Certified Coach with the International Coach Federation, Certified Professional Christian Coach with the Christian Coaches Network International, a Top 6 Expert and most importantly, our friend and now your friend.
Reach out to her at Jory@JoryFisher.com. You can listen to her podcast for Heart & Soul for Women of Faith on BlogTalkRadio, by going to www.BlogTalkRadio.com/JoryFisher. Jory, you have blessed us so much. We pray God’s blessings on you, in everything you do, may you prosper and may you enjoy the joy of the Lord.
Jory Fisher: I do. Thank you. I’m so glad I have friends like you.
Mike Van Vranken: Thank you, Jory.
Transcript by Alma Noefe