Gary Barnes: The Breakthrough Business Master

One of the most devastating moments in the life of Gary Barnes, founder and head of a successful financial advisory services firm, turned into a blessing.

Despite having lost sensation in his limbs and experiencing other debilitating symptoms of multiple sclerosis, Gary responded to receiving the diagnosis by declaring the disease would have to catch him and launched another business, becoming an author, TEDx and keynote speaker, and business and sales coach. Now, Gary is living his best life and guiding others to realizing their dreams. Over the last year, we received several testimonials of how Gary has changed the lives of members within FTL’s network. They have credited him with helping them become a better manager, learn to live a more fulfilling life, and take their business to the next level.

When Gary was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1988, he stepped back and took stock of his life. While he had built a tremendous lifestyle for his family, he didn’t participate in that lifestyle, he realized. Time had become more precious. Reassessing his priorities and how his time was used, Gary began to make changes.

Gary developed a method for maximizing the benefit from one’s time, and trademarked it as P.I.N.O.T. Having optimized the impact of his time, Gary had more time for pursuits that brought meaning to him, such as playing the drums, climbing 14,000 foot mountains and flying a P-51 WWll fighter. Gary was pleased to discover that adding life enriching pursuits also improved his financial productivity. (We’ll explore studies and the science behind how improving happiness increases productivity and wealth in upcoming features.)

Looking to his legacy, Gary wanted to help others become successful, more impactful, and to live a full life with minimal regrets. He began to share his strategies for success with others, gradually building a client base around his business and sales coaching. Eventually, Gary sold his firm, moving to provide coaching services full time. When demand for his services exceeded his time, Gary moved to offer seminars. As clients clamored for more techniques, his coaching business grew, leading to boot camps, books, TEDx Talk, and keynote speeches, such as the one he delivered at FTL’s 2019 Conference, Overcoming Adversity Using the 3 Keys for Success in Any Business.

When asked to identify a common barrier to actualizing success, Gary identified two. First, a sense that permission is needed to pursue one’s passion. Second, letting fear distract from what needs to be accomplished. Similar to a driver trying to maneuver out of a skid, Gary says, who looks to where the car is spinning, such as a wall, instead of where the car needs to go. Gary works on both barriers in his training. His mission is for people to feel empowered to pursue their inspirations armed with tools to achieve their aspirations.

More than three decades after receiving his diagnosis, Gary’s hands remain numb but he hasn’t let that stop him from continuing to write, continuing to speak, continuing to teach, and continuing to give. In addition to business coaching, he donates his time and resources to people diagnosed with MS, lupus, and other autoimmune diseases.

Based on the feedback from our network and responses to Gary’s presentations at FTL’s 2019 conference, we’re happy to recommend Gary’s business and sales coaching services and to offer a discount to attend his courses to our members. If you’d like to explore Gary’s services, attend a free event on Thursday, January 23, from 5 to 8 pm, or join his 37th bootcamp from January 24-26. FTL members, use discount code MASTER (all caps) and receive $50 off. For more information and to register: www.breakthroughbusinessmastery.com.


Ashby Walters is Executive Director and cofounder of TaxForward and Future Tax Leaders. She has served as head of or leader in tax for Peet’s Coffee, Inc., Quizno’s, Staples, Dish Network, and other companies. Over her 20-plus year career, Ashby has helped organizations from Fortune 200 companies to start-ups, save more than $200 million in cash taxes, millions in G&A, and thousands of production hours collectively.