2007   SEPTEMBER 3   #246

David Cooper - Your Business Builder

David Cooper - Your Business Builder (excerpt) (7:49)

This entry is excerpted from a 6-cassette set, housed in one of those fancy plastic binders, which I found at a yard sale around 15 years ago. Everything else about this item -- from the glaze-eyed photo of David Cooper on the cover, to the title of "Your Business Builder" and blurblines such as "Go Director Faster," to Cooper's autographed message to Diane & Pat to "Hurry!" -- screamed creepy with a capital C, but it wasn't until I took it home and started listening to it that I discovered in exactly which species of creepy "Your Business Builder" fell.

Cooper, it turns out, is a motivational speaker for Mary Kay Cosmetics -- or, more accurately, a third-party motivational speaker, whose topic is Mary Kay Cosmetics. MKC is such a huge phenomenon that it has spawned an outer orbit of businesses that have no official connection with the parent firm, but which in some way service those that do. Cooper's specialty is sales training.

Cooper's speaking technique, however, left me doubtful this guy could sell an ice cube in Hell. He rushes through his message -- "Hurry!," indeed -- his cadence is unsteady, his voice projection is weak, his message is inane (and not in the cleverly inane way of a good motivational speaker), and, most egregiously, he appears to suffer from some sort of neurological disorder that causes him to giggle at totally inappropriate moments.

But what do I know? Judging from his website, in the quarter-century since the 1981 release of "Your Business Builder" Cooper has attained incredible success. His product has evolved to a 19-volume series of videos, in which the master expounds on such subjects as "Achieving Over Adversity with Action!," "Are you a Rate-Card Order Taker or a Needs Meeting Pro?" and 'Why Questions Can Make You a Decision-Getting Machine!" A far cry from the 50 cents I paid for "Your Business Builder," the video series sells for $8900. Don't scoff, though -- that's a $1000 break over buying them separately!

For those requiring more personal care, Cooper's phone rates run a mere $975 an hour. You and I are obviously in the wrong business.

- Contributed by: Phil X Milstein

Images: Cover