Ziglar: Rear Children with Love, Kindness, Prayer

Back in 1998, when I wrote this profile of him for the Dallas Business Journal, famed motivational speaker Zig Ziglar, then 71, said he thought he was 10 or 15 years away from his “peak.” (Now, that was optimistic thinking.) Ziglar, who died in Dallas today, also talked about growing up poor in the Deep South, selling pots and pans early in his career, and later bringing in $30,000 to $50,000 a pop for each of his speaking appearances.

Easy to lampoon for his outsized, old-fashioned style, Ziglar nonethess had plenty of worthy advice for our society, as shown in this message he delivered to his Sunday School class at Prestonwood Baptist Church:

“We need to prepare all of our children to work and prosper in the world we live in today,” Ziglar said urgently. “When you awaken your children in the morning, do it gently, kindly. End each day prayerfully and lovingly, and encourage them. When you make a mistake, apologize for it. Remember, the example you set is so important. “


  • Tim Rogers

    Riiight. Try waking up my 13-year-old gently and kindly. Even if an undead zombie Zig Ziglar tried to wake up my boy, he’d need to slap him around a little and rip off his comforter and so forth (as I do).

  • Harvey Lacey

    Zig got me fired when I really needed a job back in 1978. I started selling Chevys at a T-O dealership on Saturday morning, had a great weekend, three halves. T-O means turn over, like in if you’re not clicking with the customer turn them over to someone else and get half of the sale commission. If that happens at a dealership, run.

    Monday morning there was a mandatory sales meeting. Store manager got everyone seated and quiet and then put in a Zig tape for us to listen to. After it was over he asked if there was any questions.

    My hand went up. “What the eff did Jesus have to do with selling Chevys?”

    I was fired.

    RIP, hopefully there isn’t any tape players where he is now.