Mike Coy on Persistency, the Benefits of Using a Business Adviser & Beating Cancer
Finance Monthly speaks with Mike Coy, RFC, CPBA - a Senior Benefits Consultant with Aflac & Stryde Solutions, LLC / GMG business strategies. Splitting time between Austin, TX & Colorado Springs, CO, Mike has been in the insurance industry for over 40 years. In addition to his work in insurance, Mike is also a winning baseball player and coach, a much sought-after public speaker, and the author of three books –“Incredible Business”, “I Chose… LIVE”, where he recounts his battle with cancer and how he is winning the war, and his newest book “A Random Act of Kindness”. Mike beat cancer in 2013 and seven years later, he continues the fight for others through raising awareness, charity concert fundraising opportunities and speaking engagements.
Today, Mike is recognised as one of the leading healthcare strategists in the US and is a sought-after keynote speaker who is happy to cover topics ranging from Aflac’s supplemental healthcare solutions to Healthcare Reform and Employee Benefits. In addition, Mike loves to share personal stories about succeeding in business, sports, and life. His talks are educational, inspirational, and motivational.
What would you say are the benefits of using a business adviser?
Applying strategies that work. My friend Wally Carmichael says it best: business owners face “problems they have and do not want…results they do not have and need”. Every business owner I work with seeks real answers to real questions that impact their business. As a senior business adviser/business audit consultant, I specialise in helping small to mid-sized businesses take advantage of specific steps, specific strategies, specific tax credits and tax incentives that normally only large corporations have access to. On average, our clients get three to five times the benefit through cashback programs using tax incentives, tax savings, tax credits and overall premium savings on products plus services they use every single day using our proprietary software program.
At Stryde Solutions, LLC/GMG (Growth Management Group), we offer 15 cost-saving services: specialised tax incentives, property tax audit, workers’ compensation audit (77% of workers’ compensation rates do not have the proper ID for the worker), cost segregation, waste & recycling audit, credit card merchant service audit, our Stryde retirement program and more. These services complement and enhance everything our clients do – we work with their tax advisers and tax attorneys, not against them. And it’s all about saving their clients money; all of us working together to make that happen.
In addition to this, we do not ask for any upfront payments – We get paid if and when our clients get paid. We get compensated only if we manage to achieve what they brought us on board to do.
What is the connection between your love for baseball and your professional life?
I grew up on the baseball field. From my early days of playing in Beaumont, TX, to a long history of coaching, I have always been drawn back to the game. My dad was an umpire and a coach who helped every kid in town with improving their game, so baseball is in my blood.
After having to work to put myself through college, I had the opportunity to play in the TX/LA Professional Baseball League where I hit .556 for a magical season in 1978, won the league championship, was named MVP and Offensive Player of the Year two years in a row and was offered a contract with the New York Mets baseball club. With a pregnant wife at home, the $425 a month baseball paycheck was not going to cut it. So, I focused on my insurance/financial planning career which gave me the freedom to continue to play and coach baseball. Since then, I have gone on to coach Little League, Senior League, Big League, Select Baseball and High School Baseball – winning 3 State Championships and 1 National Championship. I coached the USA 16U team in Australia five years in a row, winning five World Championships “Down Under”. Today, I am still playing and dominating Men’s Senior Baseball League with seven World Championship Rings!
I believe that playing athletics is like a microcosm of life. Sports gave me the discipline, direction and purpose to move forward in life. Every great athlete I have ever coached had one similar trait – their ‘want-to-be-better’ attitude. Drew Brees (QB NO Saints) was a great hitter for me, but he wanted to get better. Mark Petkovsek (Univ of TX /TX Rangers/St Louis Cardinals) was a great pitcher for me, but he wanted to get better. Huston Street (Univ of TX/Co Rockies/CA Angels) was also an amazing pitcher, but he always wanted to be better. My success as a player, a coach, a salesman, a public speaker, or an author, is because I always want to get better. Getting to be the best is great but staying there is where hard work and persistence pays off. That is how I help business owners succeed.
Tell us a bit about your battle with cancer.
I am someone who has never been sick in my life. Then I got cancer? My friends and family have asked me many times if I ever wanted to just give up when I was battling cancer and the answer was always ‘no’. My (then) six-month-old grandson and the idea of watching him grow up, as well as my desire to walk my daughter down the aisle gave me the motivation to never give up. In December 2017, I proudly stood beside her on the day she got married, and I now have three terrific grandsons and one beautiful granddaughter to look after, love and spoil.
I do understand why someone would want to quit. The pain associated with cancer could make anyone want to give up, and that’s why it’s so important to find a reason to live and to hold onto that reason for dear life. My reason to keep fighting was my faith that God had more in mind for me to accomplish. I had faith in my doctors and believed that they knew what steps and treatments to take to help me get better. I knew I had to have a positive attitude because of what I had read about stress. For me, it was all about learning how to stop thinking about how stressed I was and focus on how blessed I am instead. You either ride life or it rides you. It’s your choice to see which one is the rider, and which one is the horse!
After working in the insurance and healthcare industry for over 40 years, it was easy for me to find a new mission in life. My new goal is to raise awareness for cancer prevention, educate people about the need for early detection and reducing stress, and to raise funds for cancer research. I hope to see a cure for juvenile cancer in my lifetime! My “Mike Sings Elvis”, “Mike Sings The Beatles”, “Mike Sings The Hits” charity concerts have raised tens of thousands of dollars for the Aflac Children’s Cancer Center in Atlanta, GA and several Veterans groups across the country.
Tell us a bit about your new book A Random Act of Kindness.
In “A Random Act of Kindness”, a young man sees something he knows is not right, steps in, and makes a difference to someone he does not know and has never met before. That simple random act of kindness did make a difference. Mark Twain once said: “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why”. In my new book, I’ve tried to show that difference and why it really is true. Life is all about the choices we make. Some good and some not so good. Failure, however, is not an option. How we respond to circumstances beyond our control, in many cases, can be the difference between peace of mind or heart-wrenching agony. I would hope we call can come together and choose peace of mind. I know I have…
You also organise fundraiser events. Are you planning more events in the near future?
Yes, after many successful concert fundraisers, I am already planning several other exciting shows to raise money for some great causes. Stay tuned for details and join in on the fun! 100% of all proceeds go directly to the Aflac Children’s Cancer Center or any charity you feel needs the help.
T: +1 512-554-3778