Most people know Wally Amos as the founder of Famous Amos Cookies. Peter Guber met Amos in the 1970’s when he was a talent agent. But there was a problem Amos later told Guber, “I never felt I actually belonged as a part of show business.”
Much as Amos wanted to be a celebrity among celebrities, the only time he felt authentic in Hollywood was when he handed out cookies to the folks he wanted to sell his clients, The Supremes, Simon & Garfunkel, Marvin Gaye, and many other legendary performers of that era, based on a recipe his aunt taught him to bake.
Here Wally’s purpose suddenly lined up to who he really was. He felt authentic because his recipe came from the aunt who took him in and turned him around when he was in trouble as a kid. She’d given him love and goodness, and he was now putting that same heart into his baking. He also now felt congruent because he was staking his livelihood on an enterprise that he believed in body and soul.
“The cookie is a representation of how I feel about life, you know?” he told Guber. “That cookie is me. That’s who I’m selling.”
In no time he became the hero of a story called Famous Amos, building it to a national brand so irresistible that it was ultimately bought by the Kellogg Company and is still going strong thirty years after Wally sold it.
MORE ABOUT TELL TO WIN
To validate the power of telling purposeful stories, Guber includes in this book a remarkably diverse number of ‘voices’ – master tellers with whom he’s shared experiences. They include YouTube founder Chad Hurley, NBA champion Pat Riley, clothing designer Norma Kamali, “Mission to Mars” scientist Gentry Lee, Under Armour CEO Kevin Plank, former South African president Nelson Mandela, magician David Copperfield, film director Steven Spielberg, novelist Nora Roberts, rock legend Gene Simmons, and physician and author Deepak Chopra.
After listening to this extraordinary mix of voices, you’ll know how to craft, deliver – and own – a story that is truly compelling, one capable of turning others into viral advocates for your goal.