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Darren Finkelstein

The
Accountability Guy ®

Who is Darren Finkelstein, and why is accountability so important to reach your goals?

Darren Finkelstein - Accountability Coach

Darren Finkelstein is an International Accountability Coach, Advisor, Mentor, Author, and Speaker – He’s also known as ‘The Accountability Guy®’

About Darren

Darren Finkelstein is known as The Accountability Guy®, something he’s quite proud of due to being known for something so crucial to a business’s success. By holding people to account he genuinely enjoys making a difference in people’s businesses and personal lives.

Darren delivers measurable results to high-performing individuals and teams.

Having lived an extensive entrepreneurial journey filled with highs, lows, great achievements and success, Darren has over 30 years of experience in the corporate world and small business. He brings solid skills and an informed perspective to the table, confirming he is someone who walks the talk.

Helping to Keep You and Your Team Accountable

When working across the globe with high-performing business owners, entrepreneurs, executives, and teams, Darren ensures full accountability, so you meet obligations, goals, promises, and commitments made to others and yourself. On top of being passionate, energetic, and focused, accountability is critical to building a successful business. A leader is driven and accountable, and Darren has a full playbook to show you how to implement and execute to ensure the outcomes you set are met. His proven track record in both corporate and small business demonstrates he is able to deliver results no matter the size of the organisation you’re in.

Previous Apple Inc. Executive

For 10 years Darren worked for Apple Inc. as ‘Manager of Commercial Markets’ under the inspirational leadership of Steve Jobs. During his time there, he won the prestigious ‘Golden Apple Award’ for the Asia-Pacific region. He regularly hosted senior executives and VIPs from Australian businesses to visit the Apple HQ in Cupertino, California for technology tours and meetings with the Apple Executive Team. This is an amazing outcome for a high school dropout from suburban Doncaster, Melbourne – playing on the biggest technology stage in the heart of Silicon Valley. Darren often pinched himself to see if he was dreaming.

Moving on from Apple Inc.,
Darren’s Literal ‘Sea Change’

After a decade of incredible experiences, inspirational knowledge, and even a few battle scars from his time at Apple Inc. (Darren was a genuine corporate escapee), he felt the need for a change – an actual ‘sea change’, so that is what he did!

Successful Entrepreneur

Together with a business partner, Darren helped create a boutique entrepreneurial ‘lifestyle business’ in the marine industry. The business started small but then snowballed to meet the needs of the market. 15 years later the team successfully sold and exited the business.

Marina Manager and Ambassador

Darren’s next challenge was as a Marina Manager and Ambassador for Wyndham Harbour. This was a new residential marina and harbour development for approximately 1,500 people (kids, dogs, and boats) located on the north-western shores of Port Phillip in Melbourne’s west.

Award-Winning, Bestselling Author

Darren has written three award-winning, bestselling books on boating, family, and lifestyle. During that time, he developed ‘The Boat Guy’ as a brand, becoming an ambassador and industry expert, regularly presenting at boat shows and industry events. His first book entitled, ‘Honey, Let’s Buy A Boat!’ made it into the Top 5 on iTunes. He built a strong community on social media and has a growing media profile widely respected within many entrepreneurial circles. He’s seen as someone who constantly innovates, doesn’t stand still, and who “Gets Sh!t Done”.

Radio

A seasoned presenter with Radio 3AW part of Nine Media, Darren presents the ‘Beach and Bay Reports’ over summer and has done so professionally since 2014. He revels in the challenge of live radio, and it aligns well with his passion for the outdoors, lifestyle, and the ocean. Truth be told, he’s a wannabe pro surfer (and pro golfer) with little ability, but that’s never stopped him!

Entrepreneur of the Year

Next, Darren graduated from the Dent Global ‘Key Person of Influence’ entrepreneurial accelerator program in 2012 where he was the first back-to-back winner of the ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’ award for Australia. In 2021 he was invited to join the team at Dent Global to coach, mentor, and work closely with their current students and alumni.

Now you know all about Darren. It’s time to create your amazing story too!

Skills & Experience

1. Disciplined

Being ‘The Accountability Guy®’, naturally he’s focused on making a business work by eliminating any obstacles or distractions standing in the way of reaching the goals that have been set.

2. Confidence

Darren is confident that his knowledge, experience, and through the support of his community and mentors, he can make a business succeed.

3. Open-Minded

As an entrepreneur he realises every circumstance, event, and situation is a potential business opportunity. This means there is a constant flow of ideas about workflows, efficiency, people skills, product ecosystems, and potential new business prospects. He is great at looking at everything around and focusing it all on his goals.

4. Self-Starter

If something needs to be done Darren gets in and start its himself, as there is no better time than the present to ‘just do it’. He sets clear parameters and makes sure projects follow their projected path. Being proactive and intuitive, he doesn’t like waiting for permission, so prefers to ask for forgiveness instead.

5. Competitive

Darren has formed businesses where he could see a growing opportunity to do something better than it was being done before. Tick Those Boxes is a perfect example. There are plenty of ‘Business Coaches’ in the market, however, rarely do they focus on ‘Accountability’. This is why Darren works with clients of business coaches, to offer hands-on implementation of what has been agreed upon by the client and their coach.

Darren formed Tick Those Boxes because he knew with his knowledge, experience, and energy he could do a better job of solving a client’s real problems, making a quantifiable difference through delivery of a much better outcome. He’s incredibly competitive and respects his competition, knowing their role is to largely keep him accountable, and this makes him even better.

6. Creativity

Darren is great at making connections between seemingly unrelated events or situations. He does so in a creative and commercially focused manner. As an entrepreneur, he often comes up with solutions that are the synthesis of other items. He’s also known to repurpose products to market them to new industries and clients.

7. Determination

Darren looks at defeat as an opportunity for success and a learning experience. He’s determined to make all of his endeavours succeed, so he tries and tries again until they do. If you want to be a successful entrepreneur, you cannot believe anything is impossible, and one should at least try so many times that every opportunity has been explored.

8. Strong people skills

We must understand the importance of people, as they are an asset to any business. Darren has strong communication skills and likes to motivate employees as they work together towards a common goal. This ensures the business grows. He’s great at highlighting the benefits of any situation, naturally coaching others to their own success.

9. Strong Work Ethic

Darren leads from the front. He’s often the first person to arrive and the last one to leave the office. He’ll go in on his days off to make sure an outcome meets (or exceeds) expectations. His mind is constantly focussed on delivering products to fix customer problems.

10. Passion and Energy

Passion and Energy is one of Darren’s most important traits. Genuine love for the work is why he’s willing to put in extra hours to make the business succeed. This passion goes beyond making money. He’s constantly reading and researching new ways to make businesses better.

11. Been There, Done That

Having worked in both BIG business (Apple Inc.) and as an entrepreneur, Darren has built several businesses throughout his career. Largely in the service and lifestyle industries, he also acquired businesses as part of a strategy to achieve growth and market share.

He knows what you’re going through, has walked in your footsteps, and has also been a ‘solopreneur’, so is aware of the rollercoaster journey ahead of you.

Darren has been recognised in the following areas:
  • A strong listener
  • Has a positive attitude
  • Is energetic and passionate
  • Highly accountable
  • Takes the initiative
  • An excellent communicator
  • Experienced in the media (TV, Radio, Podcast, News, EDM)
  • A bestselling, award-winning author
  • Teamwork-centric
  • A willingness to learn
  • Financial knowledge
  • Thinking skills (Problem-solving and decision making)
  • Resilience
  • Strong leadership
  • Sales and in being results-focused
  • Channel and reseller management and distribution
  • Sales management (Sales funnels and processes)
  • Customer-focused
  • Customer experience driven – Employing a Net Promoter Score (NPS)
  • Marketing – Above and below the line, eCommerce, and social media
  • Emergency Management Plans and OH&S
  • Tourism
  • Competing in an overcrowded market
  • Stakeholder and investor liaison, reporting, and engagement.
  • Business collaboration
  • Partnership management
  • Business initiation, establishment, and turnaround

Dent Global develops entrepreneurs who stand out, scale up, and make a positive impact in the world.

Dent has worked directly with 3,500 + businesses around the world to help them become more visible, valuable, and scalable.

Dent Global is a leader in strategy and technology for entrepreneurial businesses. Since 2010 they have opened up Head Offices in London, Sydney, and Toronto. Their company values are to be brave, have fun, and make a ‘dent’.

As a Dent Coach Darren works with current student intake groups to ensure students stay on track and successfully implement and execute Dent’s processes and frameworks. He also privately coaches many Dent alumni.

Key Achievements

  • Working with Darren increases his clients’ probability of achieving their goals, promises, and commitments made to others and themselves by a massive 95% when following his one-on-one programs and sessions.
  • He also works with a range of Business Coaches, offering their clients direct hands-on implementation of their strategies and actions.

He delivers on what he promises:


Over the 12-month period from 1/2/19 to 30/1/20 these amazing results were achieved:

  • 91 x One-On-One sessions with clients
  • 169 x ‘Weekly Check-ins’
  • 1,225 x Goals/Actions/Tasks created by clients during our sessions
  • 1,189 x Goals/Actions/Tasks completed by clients
  • 97.1% – Client success rate
  • 97.8 – Client satisfaction score

Darren Gets Sh!t Done!

  • Completing Darren’s sessions provides you with increased sales and a higher level of profitability.
  • Learn to implement processes and strategies to solve real problems, getting your weekends back, so you can spend quality time with those you love.
  • Create outcomes enabling you to meet obligations, promises, and commitments to others and yourself.
  • Enjoy an ongoing partnership and collaboration with ‘Entrepreneurial Futurist’ Andrew Griffiths to deliver world-leading programs, sessions, and workshops for entrepreneurs across the globe.

– RADIO 3AW ~ NINE MEDIA
– LIFE’S BETTER WITH A BOAT
– MIRVAC
– ALL ABOUT BOATS for Ch7 and Foxtel
– DENT GLOBAL ~ Key Person of Influence

Key achievements

Radio
  • Radio Station 3AW’s ‘The Boat Guy’ presenting live Beach and Bay reports each summer (December to March) with a listening audience of 400,000+ each day.
  • Clicked over 500+ radio segments on Radio 3AW (693AM or DAB+) since I commenced in on-air in 2014, and still going strong today.
Author
  • Author of 3 x boating and lifestyle books:
    – Honey, let’s buy a BOAT! (2012) *
    – Honey, let’s go BOATING! (2014)
    – and Honey, let’s sell the BOAT! (2016)
    * iTunes Top 5 bestseller and industry award-winning title.
TV
  • On-screen presenter and Boating Ambassador for ‘Life’s Better With A Boat’ for the Boating Industry Association of Victoria (BIAV)
  • On-Screen Presenter for TV series: ‘All About Boats’ screened on Foxtel and Ch7 Mate
Speaker
  • Regular Melbourne Boat Show speaker/presenter on super stage.
  • Boating Ambassador for Mirvac. Objective to engage a residential community on the banks of the Yarra River, to the joys of boat ownership.
  • International Case Study for Dent Global the ‘Key Person of Influence’ entrepreneurial program.
  • Highly acclaimed speaker & presenter at Dent Global’s Brand Accelerator events held in: Brisbane, Melbourne, Sydney and Singapore

Key Achievements

 

Management
  • 4-year association with Wyndham Harbour (a residential and marina development), having opened in 2015).
  • Marina Manager (2 years) responsible for the marina’s operations covering 150 berths and its associated infrastructure.
  • 4-star Industry Accreditation
  • Built (recruited and trained) a strong marina team to deliver a ‘great customer experience’ in a safe environment.
  • Set-up three restaurants together with the development team.
  • Built and commissioned a fully automated, unattended, vessel fuel dock open 24/7, the first established in an Australian marina without a services connection to water or electricity.
  • Established a Net Promoter Score (NPS) customer engagement program for all marina visitors, achieving a top-quartile 52 score.
Marketing
  • Marketing Ambassador encouraging non-boaties to consider boat ownership at Wyndham Harbour. Introduced the ‘Discover Sailing’ program to Alamanda College for children aged 8 to 16 years old. Sailing is now an elective subject and part of the educational curriculum.
  • Marina ‘Boating Ambassador’ (Responsible for the marina’s brand establishment, community engagement, and marketing campaigns).
  • Established a comprehensive marketing program for the 2018/19 season resulting in the achievement of growth targets, brand awareness, and marina occupancy.
Environment and Regulations
  • Clean Marina Certification
  • Created industry best practice ‘Marina Emergency Management Plan’ commended by CFA and WorkSafe.
Finance and Technology
  • Responsible for a $1 million operating budget with full reporting to the Board of Management and Shareholders.
  • Implemented eCommerce solutions into a remodelled CRM program managing all aspects of customer onboarding and touchpoints.

Key achievements

  • Self-employed, small business owner
  • Creator and founder of boutique industry accredited boat broker, service and repair centre, and new boat dealership: St Kilda Boat Sales and Service Centre, located at the iconic St Kilda Marina, Victoria, Australia.
  • Created a product ecosystem where an ‘active money tree’ system identified numerous new, innovative revenue streams focusing on customer solutions and delivering new service opportunities.
  • Sold 500 + vessels over 15 years of operation, valued at over $45 million.
  • Employed a team of sales and administration staff to support the sales program.
Our Services
  • Opened the Service Centre in 2003 to complement the boat sales business.
  • Serviced and repaired over 300 boats per year. Managed slipway, chandlery, fuel sales, and service facility at the St Kilda Marina with an annual turnover of $1 million +.
  • Serviced, repaired, and maintained some of Victoria’s most impressive and expensive vessels.
  • Client base included a full spectrum of the community – People on the BRW Rich List, retirees, self-employed, and tradespeople, all wanting to enjoy the boating lifestyle.
  • 2016 saw the opening of a second boat sales office at Wyndham Harbour Marina.
Advertising
  • Advertising across Australia, Darren was the first industry broker to use a video in sales process and website (now the industry standard).
  • Established a YouTube channel (450,000 views), LinkedIn account (4,300 connections), Facebook account (2,000 friends), and Twitter account (2,000 followers).
Representative
  • Elected by industry peers as Director and Board member of The Boating Industry Association of Victoria (BIAV) from 2008 – 2015, operator of the Melbourne Boat Show.
  • Chaired the BIAV team to create an ‘Industry Dealer Accreditation Program’ for Victorian boat dealers. Approved by the ACCC and still running today.
Moving Forward
  • After 15 years of establishing and growing a successful and profitable business, it was sold and exited in 2017. Darren and his business partner decided to seek new opportunities and go their own ways.

Key achievements

  • Started as Major Account Executive responsible for the Major Account Program (Fairfax, BHP, Telstra), Government, Global Account Program (News Limited, KPMG, Boston Consulting) for the southern region (VIC, SA, WA, and TAS) of Australia.
  • Became Facility Manager for Apple’s Melbourne Office for five years.
  • Trained to respond to all press and media enquiries including products and financials.
  • Represented Apple on the Victorian Premier’s (Jeff Kennett) multimedia taskforce and was a founding board member of the Interact Multimedia Festival for the state of Victoria.
  • Escorted Australian VIP guests to Apple Inc.’s head office in Cupertino, California for presentations and technology briefings on approximately 20 occasions. Special guest speakers from Apple’s Head Office included Jony Ive, Phil Schiller, Fred Anderson, and Jon Rubenstein.
  • In 1998 was part of the national roadshow team launching the original iMac to Australia audiences.
  • Keynote speaker for Apple Inc. at the Pan Pacific Newspaper Association conference in New Zealand alongside the CEOs from Fairfax and News Limited.
  • Promoted to ‘Manager Commercial Markets’ across the southern region. Areas of responsibility included Apple Centres, All Resellers, Specialist Retail, Department Stores, Major Accounts, Global Accounts, and Government.
  • Won the prestigious Golden Apple Award for the Asia Pacific Region in 1998.

Current

  • Baru Threads, Camberwell Vic (Advisory)
  • Nacre Consulting (Advisory)

Previous

  • Coburns Distillery, Bowral NSW (Advisory)
  • Board Member and Director of Interact Multimedia Festival for the State Government of Victoria. Invited by former Premier of Victoria, Jeff Kennett, Chairman.
  • Board Member and Director of the Boating Industry Association of Victoria (BIAV).
  • Chairman of the Boat Dealer Division of the Boating Industry Association of Victoria (BIAV).
  • Director of www.BoatOnSale.com.au for the Boating Industry Association of Australia (BIAA National Committee).

 

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