How We Scale

Ready to Win Big? Learn from Cole's '600 Stickers' Triumph

Published 3 months ago • 3 min read

Howdy, Zack here.

We all have the potential to be something great, but we often fail to do the work required to get there.

Take my 16-year-old son, Cole, for instance. Last week, he wowed everyone with a stellar election campaign, where he was voted to become his high school's next VP. Going into the race, he was the underdog.

The President was running uncontested, and Cole felt she deserved to be the President. So he went after the VP role, where he was up against a student who had held elected seats and was aligned with the incoming President. Although it seemed improbable to win, he wanted to move from his tech role in ASB to an elected one for his senior year.

Cole could have made a few posters, crossed his fingers, and prayed for the win. But he didn't. Instead, he pulled out all the stops—video, posters, hand-drawn apparel, social media, and, most importantly, handed out over 600 stickers on campus. He maximized every cent of his $100 budget. And all this came during a busy school week, where he only had days to do it all.

I couldn't be more proud of him. He was clever, crafty, and confident. He knew how much he loved being involved in ASB and how much he wanted the win. So, he didn't let fear hold him back. At the end of the campaign, two of the school's principals told him how impressive it was to watch. He had brought together students from every grade and every corner of the school. They were rooting for Cole, quite literally, chanting, "Cole for VP." Random students ran up and gave him hugs and high-fives, and many shared his posts on Instagram, even incoming freshmen. He became known around his school in just days, and he won.

Most importantly, he won for the right reasons — not just to put another tick on a college application but because he truly loves being involved, leading, and serving.

But this wasn't an easy road for him. Rewinding his journey to his 6th-grade election, he lost to 'the cool hair kid.' Later, in 8th grade, he was complacent and was crushed when he didn't even make the unelected ASB. Yet, that moment became one of his biggest life lessons to date. He decided to commit fully that 8th-grade year, even though he wasn't officially a member, which led to the ASB teacher writing him a letter of recommendation for high school ASB. During his freshman to junior years, he's plugged away — helping, serving, and loving his roles in ASB with his full heart and in his actions.

Without putting in the work to win, Cole might have missed out on becoming VP. Thanks to the lesson he learned in the 8th grade, he never wanted to make that mistake again.

Cole, I love you, bud. Although this is my weekly letter that goes out to everyone, it's most importantly a letter to you...

Keep pouring yourself into everything you do.

Keep being the light in the room, even when it gets dark.

And, keep working hard, as hard work that utilizes your best gifts will always lead you down the right path.

No matter the challenges you face in the future, know that God teaches us important life lessons on our journey. We just have to remember them, learn from them, and then trust in Him for our next steps. Keep showing up with a full heart and a willingness to do good work, and you'll live an amazing life—one that not only takes care of you but also inspires others around you.

How might you benefit from handing out your '600 Stickers'?


  • Build Your Confidence
    By leaning in and doing the 'hard thing,' you'll learn and grow in the process.
  • Inspire Others
    Many of us are stuck in various places in our lives. Your big action often inspires others.
  • Achieve Your Goals
    There's no guarantee that your hard work will lead to the result, but you won't know if you don't give it your best.
Just remember:
What are your ‘600 Stickers’? Identify the actions or opportunities you've been hesitating to pursue and seize them with courage and conviction. Map out your plan and take decisive action, starting today. 🫣▸😁


  1. 👩🏼‍🦱 Little Speech Corner — Excited to see my wife's new custom logo on her private practice page (thanks to Jenna!)
  2. 🚙 74 Landcruiser FJ40 — Bonding with my son and brother as we restore this classic beauty for his first car
  3. 🏡 Family OS — Started using Ninety for our Family OS (it's not just for business, more to come)

Until next Wednesday, get out there and hand out your '600 Stickers'.

How We Scale

Written by Zack Swire. Illustrated by Jenna Brown.

Gain the lessons and hard-fought wins that help my clients go from Stuck to Scaling, earning Millions more & becoming Best Places to Work. No AI, just stories from my journey as an entrepreneur, executive coach, and dad of triplets + Jenna brings our key takeaway to life in a simple sketch. Grab a cup of joe and join us!

Read more from How We Scale

Howdy, Zack here. Grace is freely given by God to each of us, yet we often withhold it from ourselves and others. Consider your day yesterday—were there moments where having more grace could have made a positive difference? I can recall several moments from my own day: being quick to judge, lacking patience, not listening attentively, and sometimes telling rather than asking. As Edgar H. Schein eloquently states in his book, "Humble Inquiry": "What we choose to ask, when we ask, what our...

4 days ago • 1 min read

Howdy, Zack here. When you're fooling yourself, you're the fool. You can wake up day after day and pretend that everything is okay. You can put on a good smile and 'fake it until you make it', as they say. You might fool your peers, your team, and even your family. But, deep down, you know you're struggling. I know, I've been the fool. I allowed issues to stack up in work and life. I put off doing numerous things I knew I needed to do. I didn't handle those tough situations, because it would...

18 days ago • 1 min read

Howdy, Zack here. Why do some leaders make 'it' look easy? In my coaching practice, Top Teams, we discuss the six S's that Top Leaders do better than most: SOLIDIFY | build strong foundations STRATEGIZE | plan & iterate SIMPLIFY | reduce complexity STICK w/ IT | plan our work / work our plan SHAPE | lead the way SERVE | our circle of impact It's one thing to list these abilities, but how can you embody them? Here's a roadmap I share with my clients: 3 STEPS Take a Mental Assessment: Rate...

25 days ago • 1 min read
Share this post