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The Power of “Bringing the Funk:” Scott Vaughn on Motivation and Mindset

When times get tough, retailer Scott Vaughn focuses on bringing the funk – rallying his team with passion and energy to inspire customers.

In this episode of the Sleep Summit Show, the owner of Happy Z’s mattress stores shared his approach to maintaining optimism and planning for future success. His strategy includes:

1) Simplify the Shopping Experience;

2) Lead with Purpose;

3) Gather Inspiration;

4) Helpful tips for “coaching” your team ;

5) Sleep = Life

For mattress retailers feeling overwhelmed, Vaughn provides an upbeat playbook to simplify, find purpose, learn from the best, develop team culture, and educate consumers. By planning and preparing now, you can bring the funk when times improve.


Mark Kinsley: The way you win is when it’s tough. Scott Vaughn, the owner of Happy Z’s, sit and Sleep, is here to talk about how to plan and prepare for when, for when it’s going to be good. The Sleep Summit show begins right now.

Mark Kinsley: Welcome to the Sleep Summit Show. I’m your host, mark Kinsley, and I’m so excited to have Scott Vaughn on the show today.

Scott, I know you have a lot of fans in the industry. You have a lot of people that. Follow what you do. You’re on the advisory board for Nationwide Marketing Group. I know you’re good friends with, you know, Greg Law and some of the crew from uh, from that have been guests on the show. And I’m so excited to have you here.

Thanks for being here.

Scott Vaughn: Hey, thanks for having me on. It’s quite an honor. Been watching you for years and years and years. Never thought little old me would be on your great show.

Mark Kinsley: Well, little old, you tell people about you. For those who don’t know because you are based. In a small town, but you have an amazing business and I’ve, I’ve actually gotten phone calls about you over the years and finally we connected whenever that spur came at me again, uh, picked up the phone and I was like, I gotta, I gotta connect with Scott on a closer level and find out what’s going on over there in Kentucky.

Scott Vaughn: Yeah, I hear that a lot. They’re like, if Scott can make it, anybody can make it. So, uh, so I own, uh, happy Z Sleep. We’re a two store operation. In Paducah and Benton, Kentucky. I’m from Wino, Kentucky, population 456, and, uh, I’m no city slicker. We didn’t even live in the city of Wino. We lived out in the suburbs, which is basically my grandparents’ farm.

So, um, so yeah, just a little old guy from little old town and, uh, luckily found this business, uh, 20 years ago, opened my first store. 18 years ago now. So, uh, I’m getting old, but I, I can’t be more optimistic about this business than I am right now

Mark Kinsley: when I think you’d have to be optimistic for navigating the conditions that are out there right now.

’cause I know it’s tough for a lot of people and, and, and you’ve got a message of hope and optimism that I really love. But before we get there, um, we’ll kind of wade into it for sure, but give people a little bit of flavor about your background because. I was told, uh, from our good friend Pete Primo, that you were a coach and you coached for a long time, and it seems that, that that love for coaching and developing people is in your business each and every day, and that’s a passion of

Scott Vaughn: yours.

Yeah. So actually I got an athletic coaching minor, uh, in college at W K U and Bowling Green. Hey Trent, Brian, how’s up Trent, you guys over there. Love you guys and we’re big Hilltop fans all. Uh, Trent and I are big Hilltop fans, but, uh, so, uh, my basketball coaching class was a Final Four coach at W K U Johnny Oldham.

Uh, he gave me a really passion for coaching and then, um, ended up deciding not to teach, uh, school. ’cause I thought I’d kill a teenager probably if I ended up teaching. But, um, I ended up refereeing. Right outta the gate from when, as soon as I started college in eight, when I was 18. I refered high school and college basketball 25 years.

And then I started coaching when my son got to high school and I went on, went on and coached for seven years and, uh, retired a couple years ago. But yeah, I love coaching. I love, and, uh, my manager and I were talking about this last night. She said, you just got away with giving us value that. We don’t get, you know, you wouldn’t get it another job.

So she’s like, you just let us do our job. And I, I’m not a micromanager by any means, but I, my greatest joy actually with owning the business is, and all my people are young. My sales staff, they’re 19 to 26 years old. Um, there’s six of them. And my greatest joy is hiring a really good person. Train them to do the job and giving them passion about this business and then watching ’em do it, and then them take off like a, like an eagle that just flew out of the nest, a baby eagle, and they just take off and boom, they see in the world and, um, enjoying life and they enjoy what we do and very passionate about what we do.

Way more passionate than I was when I started. But they just love people and they love this business, and they’re seeing the value of it, and they’re getting a lot of positive feedback from past customers. So what’s not to love? I love this

Mark Kinsley: business, and we get to help people get a better foundation for their life on that foundation of good sleep.

Hey, go back to you being a coach and a referee. Okay. ’cause I, something just hit me here. Whenever you’re a coach, you get to work on the court during practice with your team, and whenever it comes game time, you can’t be out there on the court. You really do have to empower them and to have imparted on them the knowledge that you hope that they’re gonna take.

And, and using the game, you can run up and down the sidelines. You can scream and fail and wave your arms as much as you want, but ultimately they’re gonna be out there playing the game. And it sounds like. That’s similar to what you do with your team. You’re not micromanaging, but you’re getting them ready for the game and then standing back and letting ’em do what they do best.

Yeah. Have you

Scott Vaughn: been watching me coach? Because that’s, I did a lot of, uh, flailing and of course I could, I knew all the referees ’cause I used to referee with ’em. And so I could

Mark Kinsley: try to really get, tell us how to really get in the referee’s head. Like, what, what should we, what should we

Scott Vaughn: whisper? Well, it’s, they respected me ’cause I did, I.

I called the state tournament, which is hard to do in Kentucky. But, um, so they knew me and knew I knew how to ref. And, and one of ’em even made a comment, like, I hate, I hate refereeing for Scott Vaughn because he knows what we’re doing out here. And, and I, and I’ll say, did you really like that call? You know, they’re like, well, yeah, I, I didn’t, I didn’t like it.

I try to be funny with ’em, so to and say Good call. Dang it. You know, when they make a good call against my team, you know, stuff like that. Just have fun with ’em. And then when I do have to get on ’em, I bought some time with ’em, but, but coaching is inspiring and, uh, it’s inspiring kids, kids, and I love that.

I love doing that. Uh, I miss, miss that a little bit, but I’m doing that with my kids at, at work and I call ’em kids ’cause they’re half my age or less. But, um, they, they’re really the most joy you see is a, is somebody who’s coachable first thing. And a lot of times, especially in a public school setting, you get kids that aren’t coachable and they’re hard, I mean, Okay.

They don’t do the sprints. They don’t run to the line like they’re supposed to. They show up late. Um, they do a lot of things and there’s not a, in the public school setting, you can do about it as much as when I, I coached in a private school, one of the small schools in this whole state, and, um, right here where I live in Benton.

And, uh, we beat some big teams and it was fun because we were the. We were the little guy and if we beat anybody, it’s a little Christian fellowship. Uh, you can’t lose to them. ’cause there’s, I mean there’s, we didn’t even have a full size court, so the only court probably in this whole state, uh, basketball, crazy state.

And, uh, we beat a lot of big schools. A lot of big schools. And we just inspired the fire of these kids. And I would, I would chest bump, I would, if. If they were willing to dive on the floor after a ball and go after it. And, and that’s all come from all the practice, all the summer and all that where they know you, you love them, and you’re with ’em no matter what.

And, and pump ’em up and, and we just had a ball. I mean, it was so much fun with those kids. And I love those kids and, uh, still love ’em. They’re getting married and all that now. But, um, but yeah, it’s, it was really fun to coach and. Inspire kids and they inspired me too, you know, and uh, I told ’em, you know, we don’t play to win like Herm Edward said, we don’t play to win.

We played to inspire. Hmm. So I said, I don’t want you just, I don’t want that electric sign in the corner with the numbers on it to decide if you want or not. I want the parents of the other team to come down. And say, man, I’ve never seen anybody play that hard in my life. And that’s what we, that’s what we wanna do at Happy Z’s two.

We wanna wow our customers to a point that they’re like, I’ve never been in a place like this before. I’ve never been treated like this before. And we wanna inspire our people to inspire. So inspire people, inspire people. So I wanna inspire my people to inspire the customers to where, They’re gonna be the sounding board out there for us that advertises for us to, to our, our

Mark Kinsley: part of the country.

And you see some of that, right? You’re seeing customers come back in saying, I’ve never been treated like this. Oh, yeah.

Scott Vaughn: Yeah. We’re trying to, we’ve created a process, uh, for sleep too, for picking out a mattress that’s made it so sim so much simpler for the customer to buy and, and actually pick out. And we call it custom fitting.

So we custom fit them with a perfect mattress, perfect pillow, and um, so it’s custom fit for them. And, uh, I kind of got that idea. I went to New York a few years ago and ran into a mall right by Central Park on the southwest side of Central Park. There’s a little mall there, a big mall actually. But, um, there was like a running store in there, running shoe store.

And it’s, uh, the division of Fleet Feet. Have you heard of Fleet Feet? I have, yeah. Okay. So they, my wife had had knee problems. I ran in there. We always shop separate. And, um, her knee had been hurting and she’d had back surgery, so I found some shoes or some flip flops. She, she would like, so I went back out to get her and she was there and, um, they came in and they mapped her feet and custom fit her with a perfect set of shoes.

And insoles and her knee pain went away and then they did, didn’t mine too. And I had good shoes, but, um, they custom fit me with the perfect shoes for how I walked and ran and insoles. And it didn’t cost me a dime more than going to my shoe store here. And I thought that’s what we should be doing at, at Happy Z’s, is we should be custom fitting our customers.

And so that we developed a process and my manager and I really have, we brainstorm constantly. She’s got ideas every 20 seconds and, but we really custom fit people and we’ve developed a system to create the perfect sleep system for our customers. And through that process, we had to do all that planning when it’s slow like it is, right.

You know, it’s kind of slowed down. So when it got good, we had a. We had a pretty good system

Mark Kinsley: going on. Can you describe that to us? Because I always like to go through that customer journey because when people come in, a lot of times they’re, they’re scared, you know, they’re going through a transition in their life.

They may be scared of the sales person. They may be thinking in the back of their mind, am I gonna get a good deal or get ripped off? Yes. So walk us through that experience. ’cause it sounds like it’s, it’s working.

Scott Vaughn: My manager told me not to give away too much strategy, but here we go. We’re gonna do it anyway.

Way. She’s not here, she’s at work. So we do a thing called technology testing. So we’ve got, uh, latex mattresses, we’ve got Visco memory foam, and we’ve got innerspring. So we’ve got luxury level, which are pretty high, high-end products, and that’s what we comfort test. But we just do a medium, like a medium feel in each one of those.

So we’ll do a medium latex, a medium memory foam. Media ministry, let the customer decide which one they want. Then we go to which furnace they would want in that level, and then they always wanna know the price. So that’s when we hit ’em with the news. And of course, we show the adjustable bases on. We got an adjustable base under every single bed, including twins.

We don’t, they’re not, we don’t believe in box springs where we, where we’re at. So, um, So we show ’em the adjustable base in the process too. So once they pick that out, then uh, then we try to fit their wallet if that’s too much. And we use financing to help, you know, manage the shock and awe of the price because a lot of times we’re north of 10 grand on a luxury setup with a luxury adjustable base pillows.

So we have a, a, a thing we created. This is another my manager. She’s credible. You’re gonna meet her at the sleep summit. Can’t wait. But, um, she created this all in pricing. So it’s got the mattress adjustable base, two pillows, set of sheets, master protector protection plan on the adjustable based delivery set up and Holloway and taxes, and on 48 month financing.

So, You know, all that’s gonna add up, add up to a customer, but I, for only $240 a month. And you got the perfect custom fit sleep

Mark Kinsley: system. I want to, I wanna recap something here and get your thoughts as I echo it back to you because you, you did something there in two different ways that remind me of a very simple saying, A confused mind doesn’t buy, right?

And the first thing you did was you took it from a technology standpoint, which I’ve never heard of anybody doing it that way. Hey, we’re gonna try innerspring, we’re gonna try latex, we’re gonna try memory foam in a medium feel. And then whichever of those technologies you gravitated to, then that gives you the entry point to go and explore different fields within that range of products.

Correct. That’s a nice way to get rid of all the feel fatigue that you can have when you going between all the different things. And you set the expectation from the beginning, like, let’s try this three and that’s all you’re doing. This is

Scott Vaughn: the step. Yeah, yeah, yeah. We have a step-by-step process and we tell ’em that right up front after we ask some questions and uh, find out.

Basically what their problems are. You know, we wanna know what their problems are, so we don’t wanna fix a problem they don’t have. Right. And I heard a story, uh, I think Bob Kel told me this one. Uh, he was at a store and this salesman was talking to this little old lady. And, uh, he kept talking about everybody tried her on, you know, talked about motion transfer and all this stuff.

And so time comes, she’s. Walking out and he goes, Hey, you know, did you not find what you’re looking for? And, and then he starts asking her questions about what her problems are and she said, well, my problem is my husband just died and I just couldn’t sleep on that mattress anymore that my husband lived on.

She didn’t care about motion transfer. He’s fixing a problem she did not have. And so our initial talk with our prospects are, What are your problems? Why are you here? You know, we’re not gonna ask it in that way, but we’re gonna find out why they’re there and what their issues are. And then we’re gonna use whatever their hot buttons are to present our products.

Yeah, that’s, and then try the technology. And then we do have a number bed as well, so we have something. So if somebody’s interested in a sleep number, we will take ’em to our number bed and show ’em. Show ’em that too. But we don’t usually do that in our process, which, Three’s. Three’s enough to. You get, start on ’em, you know?

Mark Kinsley: Yeah. That’s, uh, I like, I like that, just eliminating confusion from the very beginning. And the second thing you did to, to really reduce confusion, was that all in pricing? Because people were wondering, how much am I gonna pay? And is there an add-on? Is there tax, is there delivery fee? If I’m outside of 40 miles, is it gonna go up from there?

So, Yeah. Really smart things to simplify the process. And it sounds like you’ve done a wor a lot of work around this and I give you a lot of, a lot of uh, uh, respect for that work because I always say simple isn’t always easy.

Scott Vaughn: No. And it is. Keep it simple, stupid. We use that, uh, kiss method a lot because the simpler we make it and that that’s a problem when we developed that process and that we haven’t been doing this long, three or four months.

And, um, the problem was we were selling ’em a. Maybe a luxury bed or an ultra premium type bed. And then we get ’em to the desk and we, they know the price is whatever, and then we hit ’em with, you know, you’re gonna need a mattress protector with that. And then with that adjustable base, you’re gonna want these sheets that have the straps on it so that the sheets don’t pop off.

And then are you want it delivered? Yeah, of course you are. And then now we’ve got this protection plan. For your adjustable base to bump the warranty up and then you needing it hauled away. Mm-hmm. And then you remember those pillows you liked. You know, do you want those pillows? They’re what? We’ve hit ’em with six more questions after we got ’em to the desk.

And you could just see their face like mm-hmm. Total fatigue. And I’m like, we’ve got to stop. I mean, we need to sell ’em these things. They need these things, but we’ve gotta figure out a way. So I. After I, I went to see Greg Wall after I met him, and, um, we just bounced ideas off each other. And I love that guy, by the way.

Just absolutely love him. Uh, brilliant human being, uh, that I learned a lot off of. But we talked about bundling and so we did bundles for a while and we still doing that, but when we put it in the, all in pricing on our, just our luxury, so our luxury level. So instead of hitting ’em with 10 or $12,000, we’re hitting them at.

Two $40 a month. Well, where we live is we’re in one of the lowest income places in the, in the country. So, uh, Paducah is our big city. Average household income is $39,500. So selling luxury bedding to people that make 40 grand a year is not easy. So, You’re not gonna, you’re not gonna sell them a $10,000 mattress, I’m sorry, but they can afford $250 a month, you know?


Mark Kinsley: um, and, and one of the things you talked about, um, you and I have spoken about previously is the idea that those people that have average household income of under $40,000, well, price isn’t the issue when they’re coming in with. Heart problems and acid reflux and hip replacements. And that was just yesterday.

All those things came in

Scott Vaughn: your store. Yeah, yeah, yeah. And uh, we get to play doctor, I think we talked about that. We get to play doctor every day without the student debt. So, but um, but yeah, we got people with real problems, real issues and uh, they’re researching online now about their health and. I had a doctor’s appointment yesterday, uh, my annual checkup, and me and my doctors just talked about sleep for an hour, and, uh, he wanted to know, he was asking me for, for advice for his patients.

And so, and he knew the benefits of sleep, how important it is and that kind of thing. So,

Mark Kinsley: Hey, let’s go there. Let’s go there for a second because we got our sleep summit quiz question. And this is perfectly tied to medicine because here it is, the research, uh, new research from the American College of Cardiology, analyze data from.

Over 170,000 adults in the US And so they were trying to figure out a bunch of different factors related to to health, and they focused in on sleep habits. And this shocking statistic came out, and we’ll use it as our quiz question that we’ll answer here at the end of the show. People with better sleep habits or what percentage less likely to die for any reason?

What percentage less likely to die for any reason, people with better sleep habits. So hang on to that and we’ll get also to where is the strangest place Scott Vaughn has ever. Slept. That’s all here on the Sleep Summit Show. Um, Scott, one, one of the, hang on to your answers by the way. Okay. Um, one of the, one of the things that, that we started off the show talking about that we’ve already been digging into is just this idea of hope and optimism and how to plan and prepare for when it’s going to be good.

What do you mean by that? And, and what’s your message?

Scott Vaughn: So I’m a big Zig Ziglar fan, big Zig Ziglar fan, and he had a saying, uh, to win, you must plan to win. You must prepare to win, and then and only then can you expect to win. And I use that with all my basketball teams too, as one of the first. Speeches I gave to the team was, Hey, now’s planning and preparing time because we’ve gotta build up endurance to we, I like to press basketball, so I like pressure and bring, uh, bring the funks one of my statements and that I’m writing a book by that name.

Bring the funk. Actually bring the funk.

Mark Kinsley: What does that mean? I like that.

Scott Vaughn: Well, it’s bringing that extra gear. It’s the, you see teams, football teams. It’s like fourth quarter. When the fourth quarter comes. So you played the even game and it’s that extra gear that you kick in and the other team doesn’t have.

And so when you’re a team, when you really work together, it’s you’re really bringing the funk and iron sharpens iron. Um, and we’re, we’re just wanting to bring out that extra level and be the 1% that the 99% aren’t willing to do. You know, we wanna be that the elite. The top gun. We wanna be those, that kind of person and that kind of team.

At, at Happy Z’s.

Mark Kinsley: I loved being that fourth quarter team. I, I played high school basketball and just loved playing high school basketball. And, and we had this coach that he would, we did something called chow drills. Okay. So it was like the, these, these modified crazy 36 different line drills. And they called ’em chow drills because you blow your chow.

It happened all the time with people. And I remember we would get into these fourth quarter situations and we would just start blowing pa past people because we were so well conditioned and we had a great team. Yeah. And so I love, I love it when a, a good plan comes together and then these That’s right.

And you just, you know, there’s so many things in life too that I’ve noticed that if you just look at what you’re doing and you dial up the intensity. Yeah. Most people don’t dial up that intensity. Yeah. And just really get after

Scott Vaughn: it. Yeah. And it’s like when it’s slow, this should be the time where you’re like, as a business owner or a manager of a mattress store is like, this is great.

I’ve got time to plan. You know, and then you get your team together and you brainstorm. And it’s like, we, we go offsite, quarterly now, and we just brainstorm and we throw ideas at each other and come up with plans and, and we do it almost daily actually. It’s so much, it’s, we have a ball at work just coming up with some, some new idea or, or whatever, and we just, you know, Most of them we don’t implement, but some of ’em we do.

And because we’ll bounce off, you know, crazy ideas off each other and, and, uh, most of the time they work. And so I, I always say this is the time when you take market share right here. When it’s slow. This is when you’re gonna step up. When everybody else is sitting in a store and they’re moping and complaining and sitting on their phones and they’re just doing this, playing a game all the time, or playing whatever.

If you’re the 1% and you’re planning and preparing right, then you’re taking market share right now.

Mark Kinsley: How does somebody do it? If they’re, if they’re sitting there, let’s say they’re listening right now on their phone and they need to get after it. What, where do they start? And they’re saying to themselves, I don’t even know where to begin.

What do they do?

Scott Vaughn: Well, it’s, uh, getting ideas. So you’re doing it right now by, by watching a podcast. On the mattress industry, but there’s this new website that came out. It’s called, um, YouTube, and you can learn anything on YouTube. I can, hold on. What’s the U R

Mark Kinsley: L again? Can you give it to me one more time?

Y o

Scott Vaughn: u two t u b e. Yeah. It’s, it’s new. You probably hadn’t even heard of it

Mark Kinsley: yet. No, I’m excited to check it out. I can’t wait.

Scott Vaughn: You can learn, I can learn like, uh, I bought an old Corvette and I’ll add lights out and all this other stuff, and I’m like, How am I gonna figure it? ’cause I don’t wanna take it pa So you get on YouTube and you can learn how to do anything just about on YouTube.

You can get a college education master’s degree on YouTube. So being on YouTube and, uh, getting inspired, uh, reading leaders or readers. Mm-hmm. So, uh, one of the podcasts I listened to at the end, they ask the, whoever the guest is, like, what are the four books that. What are four books that you’re reading or have read that inspired you the most?

And so I took, I just write down those four books and I kept buying ’em. And I’m not a reader, I’m a math guy, so I’m having to learn to, like, to read, but I have learned a ton from these people. And, um, get inspired. I mean, it’s very inspiring to listen, Hey, let’s,

Mark Kinsley: let’s, let’s go. Let’s go granular for a minute.

What are a few books that, that are on your list right now that come to the top of mind? If somebody’s out there like, Hey, I wanna be a, a leader and a reader, what are a couple that they should check out? A

Scott Vaughn: game changing book? Can I just grab a few?

Mark Kinsley: Absolutely. Grab a few. I’ll tell you right now, I’m, I’m reading a Predictably Irrational.

It is an incredibly fascinating book about how the human beings come into the, the marketplace, or how human beings just fundamentally interact in ways that are irrational, but it’s predictable we’re, you can forecast that this irrationality is gonna happen. So there’s one on my list as you grab, I. Your stacks.

Scott Vaughn: Hang on, I gotta write that down. What was

Mark Kinsley: it? Predictably irrational. I’m actually doing it in audio book format, so, okay. The audio book’s really good as well.

Scott Vaughn: I started grabbing books. I’m like, I’m gonna have to stop ’cause there’s so many. So one of ’em I read, um, is work the System. So it talks about process.

Um, building processes in your business, so it takes a lot of work off you as a business owner. Uh, Sam Carpenter wrote

Mark Kinsley: that Sam Carpenter worked the system. Okay, gotcha. Yeah, it’s

Scott Vaughn: processes are hard to do, but it’s a one percenter thing. It’s like the one percenters will do it and it’s worth it, but it’s hard.

It’s not easy. This book is a game changer, unreasonable Hospitality. Have you read this one?

Mark Kinsley: Adrian from our team loves this book.

Scott Vaughn: This is, this is unreal. Unreal. It has nothing to do with the mattress business. It’s a restaurant business guy, but it has everything to do with the mattress business because it’s how you wow your customers.

And so I bought my manager one and she read that pretty quick and then start with why Simon Sinek. Another great one. I can give you the cliff. I can give you the cliff notes on that one. We, we, uh, uh, people don’t buy what you sell. They buy why you sell it. That was the big quote in that, that book.

Mark Kinsley: Hey, connect the dots with this real quick on that one.

Yep. So, When people come into Happy’s, easy sit and sleep, they’re coming there for a mattress. What’s your why? What do you, how do you communicate that and what is it?

Scott Vaughn: Okay. That’s very good. That’s a very good question. So our why is they wanna buy local. A lot of times there’s a lot of people that are local, but they wanna know why, why would I buy from you?

And so I think us giving that process a. But b, we do a thing called buy bed. Give a bed. A friend of mine there in Arkansas, uh, trademarked it. These connections you build up through over time that just like nationwide and things like that. He, so he gave me this idea, or he did it actually, and I copied it, but, so when we sell a bed, we donate one, a twin mattress to a.

Uh, a place called Starfish Working Ministries here in our area, and they give it to a kid that doesn’t have a bed that’s laying on the floor. So people like that, I mean, they just, they’re inspired by that. And it, we have ’em sign a sticker and we put the sticker on the mattress with their name on it and say, Hey, because you bought here, uh, we can donate a mattress in your name to, to a kid that doesn’t have one.

They can never repay you. And there’s no better giving than giving to somebody that can’t repay you. And so that’s our biggest

Mark Kinsley: why, and that’s what John Wooten, speaking of being coaches, John Wooten said, you haven’t lived a perfect day until you’ve done something for someone who can’t repay you. That’s right.


Scott Vaughn: John Wooden. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah.

Mark Kinsley: I love that. So, so you talk about the, the why in terms of the purpose that you have in, in giving people a better night’s sleep that goes beyond the purchase somebody’s gonna make, you’re gonna give kids and other people that need help a better night’s sleep. That’s part of your why, right?

Scott Vaughn: Yeah, and I mean, it will, it will absolutely make you cry as a grown man, grown man cry to see a kid sitting on a bed or laying on a bed that didn’t have one last night and maybe never had one. And it’s just like the guest you had recently, what was his name? Michael Unbroken. Unbroken. Michael Unbroken. Uh mm-hmm.

Slept on concrete floors growing up. Foster home after Foster home. Didn’t know where he was gonna be the next night. And think about, given Michael and broken a mattress the first time is to get off the ground and. That’s, that’s a compelling reason why people would buy from us rather than buying online.

Mark Kinsley: You know, that’s what, um, you know, your buddy Greg Law and, and behind, even behind that Keith Moneymaker Yeah. Does with the Dreams for All foundation. Yeah. And, you know, it just, it changes the entire conversation for, for the business with them. It’s an incredible thing. Yeah.

Scott Vaughn: So people wanna buy from people they like, but they wanna buy from giving people too, and they don’t wanna buy.

And I always, I’ve always said this too to my sales staff, is if you’re, if you’re just selling for money, you’re not gonna sell much. If you’re selling as a transference of feeling to a customer to help them, you’re probably gonna make a really good living in sales. And, um, and we’re, we’re reading right now How to Win Friends and Influence People, the whole staff.

We got the whole staff a book and. They’re all reading through it right now. So, uh, anyway, great book and Pete Primo’s book Sell A Million. Every mattress store owner should have this book. There are 101 ideas that are very practical. That’s a great book. Good old Pete. Shout

Mark Kinsley: out to Pete. Yeah, Pete’s an amazing, precious Pete Primo.


Scott Vaughn: nicknamed Precious Pete. Hey,

Mark Kinsley: next time you talk to him, say, uh, Uh, call him the baby hippo. He’ll, he’ll know what it means. Oh, I know the Baby Hippo story. Oh, you know the baby hippo?

Scott Vaughn: Yeah. That’s funny.

Mark Kinsley: Well, hey, that’s a, those are great lists. You know, one of the things we, we were talking about there is how to plan and prepare for when it’s going to be good and so much, you know, I was talking to a friend this morning as I was walking, Jonesy, my dog. And I know you’re probably out watching Walking TJ at the same time.

Yeah, and I was talking to, uh, my buddy Brandon Bain from, uh, bedhead Marketing, and we were just going over some of the stuff that’s going on with market and the industry and, and different things. And, and you know, we just got into this idea that, you know, sometimes you’re in a frame of mind when you need inputs, but once you gather up enough inputs, then it’s time to apply them.

So inputs and application. Inputs and application. So as you’re sitting there thinking about how to plan and prepare for when it’s good. Gathering up those inputs. And sometimes, like you said, those inputs are brainstorming. Yes. Coming up with volume of ideas and then you start selecting and applying ’em.

I wanna

Scott Vaughn: add to that because just meeting with elite dealers, I wanna, you know, I think I told you the last time I talked to you, I’m looking for the most elite dealers in the country and I will fly wherever it takes to go meet with them. And like I wasn’t going to high point. Uh, In the spring until I met Greg Law in Dallas at Nationwide.

And I’m like, all right, I’m coming to see your operation. So I flew to Charlotte and I went to High Point for kicks, I guess. And then I went to see Greg and we had great time. Uh, saw two of his stores and spent three and a half hours with him. Thanks to Contour Airlines being delayed. I gotta spend a lot more time with him.

But, um, Just bouncing ideas off of him. So yeah, you ask the question, what would somebody do if they’re struggling? Find good dealers, find elite dealers, and go and talk to ’em. Go to wherever they are, go see their operations and learn from ’em and you’ll, you’ll be amazing at what kind of ideas you’ll pick up.

And then like nationwide, nationwide events, or. Terrific or whatever buying group, and I’ve said this to you before, is like you’ll be at breakfast with a round table with people you don’t even know, and the worst dealer there will have an idea you’ve never thought of. And, and you’ll pick up some idea that like, that’s brilliant.

I don’t know how, I didn’t think of that before. And then you’ll always take a pen and paper and I’ll, or I’ll put a note in my phone, like whatever idea I learned at breakfast, eating, running eggs and floppy bacon, so, you know.

Mark Kinsley: Well, and that’s, you know, if I could, if I could throw out a, a little, uh, a little extra here.

I know that that’s one of the reasons you’re coming to Sleep Summit you said.

Scott Vaughn: Yeah, I wanted to, like, I message you, I’m like, okay, I want, I don’t wanna make average dealers. I know there’s gonna be some there, but I wanna make the most elite dealers in the country because I’m needing new ideas to implement into my business because we’re, I.

We’re trying to grow. You know, I’m, I’m, I’m expecting, I’m so optimistic, I can’t even, I’m about to explode. I’m so optimistic about this business because everybody’s researching health right now and they’re finding out the truth. The truth is sleep is more important than diet and exercise combined, and it’s amazing.

And so people are coming in and they’re willing to spend the money. You know, and I tell people all the time, ’cause in our area we’re in a rural area, so everybody’s got a zero term lawnmower. I used to sell, I used to be a rep for a lawnmower company, and they’ll be like, I, it’s $10,000. I’m not spending $10,000 on a bed.

Now, that’s not always sell, so I’ve said that several times, but we sell plenty of a thousand dollars beds too. But, And I’ll say, I, I bet you’ve got a really nice place, sir. And Oh yeah. You know, and they, everybody wants to brag about their castle. Got three acres and I said, you know, you must have a really nice zero turn lawnmower.

Yeah. Oh yeah. You know, and he gets in talking about how many horsepower and this 72 inch duck and all this, I can mow it in an hour and all this. And I said, I bet you spent more than 10 grand on that thing. Oh, and the wife looks at him and says, yeah, he spent $12,500. And I said, so you spent $12,500 to make temporarily make tall grass short, and you won’t spend it on something your wife needs for her bad back.

And then they’ll just, and she’ll, she’ll always look at him like, He got you.

And then they’ll say, I can’t believe I’m spending that much on a bed and I’m, you’re not. You’re spending on a sleep system that’s gonna help you and your wife for many, many years to come. I promise you, it’ll be the best money you ever spent.

Mark Kinsley: You’re making an investment in, in your every moment of your life, your night, and

Scott Vaughn: your day.

Right. And I, and I, another one of my, I’ve got a lot of one-liners, so sorry. That’s just how we are in the country. But, uh, I always say you spent a third of your life on it, and the other two thirds depends on how that third went. So your whole life depends on how you slept last night. If you don’t sleep one night, they do that at, uh, Guantanamo Bay.

They keep ’em awake all night. Mm-hmm. For a reason. ’cause it drives ’em crazy. So you, there’s

Mark Kinsley: a. It’s a perfect chance also to highlight our, our quiz question. ’cause it feeds right into this. And, and if you don’t, just what you said, Scott, you spend a third of your life on it and the other two thirds depends on that third, right?

Well, there’s real data out there to back that up now. And I mentioned it earlier with the, the research from the American College of Cardiology and there’s 172,000 plus adults that they had respond to. A, uh, it was a C D C, um, Survey that was GA gauging the health of the US population included questions about sleep and sleep habits.

Well, they found that I’ll, I’ll give you a guess. People with better sleep habits were what percentage less likely to die for any reason.

Scott Vaughn: Well, we’re all gonna die, so I’m not sure how to, less likely to die.

Mark Kinsley: I’ll, I’ll, I’ll, uh, I’ll throw it out to you. Rephrase. Okay. I can also, I can also rephrase it for you.

Okay. Here’s an easy way to rephrase it. Okay. Um, so they’re saying sleeping for, you know, about eight hours can improve your overall health and decrease the likelihood of an early death. According to this data, researchers say just under. What percentage of all deaths can be attributed to poor sleep patterns?

Oh, what percentage of all deaths can be attributed to poor sleep patterns? And, and I think one another way of like showing like causation is, is now they, they’ve shown Yeah. That bad sleep, uh, actually causes Alzheimer’s.

Scott Vaughn: Yeah. Uh, I would say 40%.

Mark Kinsley: Well, they’re saying that for all causes, um, you know, 10% okay, of all deaths can be attributed to poor sleep

Scott Vaughn: patterns.

Okay? That way overstated that,

Mark Kinsley: well, they, they did say people with better sleep habits were 30% less likely to die for any reason. So 2020 1% were less likely to die from cardiovascular disease. 19% were less likely to die from cancer and 40% were less likely to die of causes other than heart disease or cancer.

So your 40% was right on whenever it didn’t involve heart disease or cancer. So we got there eventually. You were spot

Scott Vaughn: on. Chased that rabbit. We got there

Mark Kinsley: eventually. But it’s, it’s crazy to think of, um, they’re, they’re now gathering, you know, sleep science as a discipline is relatively young, and so we’re now focused on it.

We’re gathering data and we’re gonna be able to say with confidence, this is the difference between life and death in many cases. Yeah. It’s now being shown.

Scott Vaughn: It is huge. Huge.

Mark Kinsley: Hey, where’s the, where’s the strangest place you’ve ever slept?

Scott Vaughn: I’ve, I’m lived a long time now, so I’ve got a place, a lot of places to, uh, pick from, but I’ve got one I think you haven’t had before.

So I’ve slept in a funeral. Home is the strangest place I’ve ever slept, and the reason I did that, You’re, you’re speechless. Uh, the reason I did that was I was coaching little league baseball coming outta college and the guy I was coaching with, we became friends and he worked for the coroner and a funeral, funeral home in Bowling Green where Trent lives.

And, um, he said, Hey, we’ve got this. I was needing a place to stay. We’ve got this studio apartment at the funeral home you can stay at. So I lived in a funeral home for a year. Yeah. So,

Mark Kinsley: you know most people that sleep in a funeral home, they don’t wake up.

Scott Vaughn: Exactly. A lot of people think it’s strange to, or be really weird, and it is weird. But the neighbors that came, they, they were extraordinarily quiet. And they only stayed a few days, so I never had a noise complaint.

Mark Kinsley: So how close were you to that part of it?

Scott Vaughn: Uh, right above it. Right above the funeral, uh, parlors that they had there.

Mark Kinsley: Yeah. And after a while you just didn’t even think about it?

Scott Vaughn: No. ’cause you see, ’cause I, he was the coroner, so I worked for the coroner and so I’ve seen every way he can die. Uh, just very strange. And I, I was the guy that took ’em to go get autopsies. So if they died for a strange reason, then I was the guy to haul ’em to Louisville and, and take ’em to the medical examiner.


Mark Kinsley: you got any strange ones? Like what, what were some of the strangest

Scott Vaughn: ones that stand out to you? Uh, I had. One time I was transporting a lady from our funeral home to another funeral home, and they had tow booths at the, on the parkway back then. And so you have to pay, they didn’t have any scanners like they do these days, but, uh, this is 30 years ago.

So this lady, they had her makeup done and her hair done and all that, so we couldn’t zip her up in the gurney. So, uh, they had her up, you know, zipped up to right here, like a collar of his shirt. And so, uh, I came into the toe booth a little hot.

I didn’t have exact change. So the gurney comes up in between the seats and she’s right there, right beside me.

So I’m trying to, and the, the stops on the gurney, you know, stoppers, it ripped the carpet and everything in the van, and I’m trying to push it back with one arm. I could not, and I get into the, the toll booth and the lady there taking my money. So all

the dead body and the, yeah. Unexplainable. I just. I gave her my money and went on.

Mark Kinsley: So you have this, this lady with her makeup done up the body bag basically zipped up to her collar. She’s sitting right beside you as you’re painting money. He is right there, like

Scott Vaughn: right beside me. And I drove, I drove the rest of the way with her right there. Like, oh, well, she’s not going anywhere.

Mark Kinsley: Oh man, that’s

Scott Vaughn: a good one.


Mark Kinsley: Well, Scott, it’s been, it’s been fun talking to you. Thanks for you too. Thanks for being on the Sleep Summit Show here. Thanks for coming to Sleep Summit, which is happening the ninth through the 12th of October here. Beautiful. Bentonville, Arkansas. We can’t wait to get you on a bike.

Scott Vaughn: Yeah, I bought a new bike just for the sun.

Well, I didn’t adjust for the summit. I love mountain biking, but I did buy a new bike and, uh, I’ve been, I put 60 miles on it in a couple weeks, so, I’m, I’m having a ball around here. We’ve got a lot of trails here and, uh, I just wanna thank you, mark, for all you’ve done for our industry. It’s, it’s, I’m not, I wouldn’t be where I’m at without you and other people like you and, and, and Quinn and Podcasting’s.

Awesome. I learn, I learn a ton every week. Can’t wait for Monday morning, every Monday morning. So, uh, well, it’s my pleasure.

Mark Kinsley: I really appreciate you. Yeah, it’s my pleasure. I know that, you know, at the fam, there’ve been so many people over the years that have, Just given so freely of their, of their energy and their talent and their wisdom, and it’s just so nice to have a platform where people can come and just do that.

And I thank you for coming and sharing a message of hope and optimism and how to prepare right now when it’s, when it’s maybe not so good for when it is gonna be good. And I love using the word when, because it’s gonna happen.

Scott Vaughn: It’s gonna get better. It’s, it does that every four years or so. So we made it through oh eight and 2012 and then covid.

So, hey, this is nothing. We’re, we’re going, we’re planning and preparing for when it’s good again. So hope everybody stays optimistic and learn, learn, learn,

Mark Kinsley: learn, learn, learn. That’s right. And we’ve got a couple of book recommendations there. Uh, we’ll hop, you know, we got those. Hopefully you jotted ’em down.

We’ll put ’em in the show notes and be sure to subscribe. And like Scott said, every Monday morning at 6:00 AM we’re kicking it off with a new episode. Uh, so Scott, thank you so much. Thank you to your team. Yeah. At Happy Z’s. I know you’ve got an amazing team and you’re coaching them and it sounds like they are just absorbing anything and everything that you can, you can bring their way and you’ve got an amazing business, it sounds like, and a wonderful community that supports you and Yeah.

Uh, you’re just a bright shining light. Like a great example of what this industry. Can be, and I know a lot of people look up to you, so thanks for, thanks for opening up here and, and we’ll have to apologize to your manager for sharing as much as you shared. We are sorry.

Scott Vaughn: She not, she knows she can’t control me and I really can’t control her either.

Hey, it’s like, it’s fine. Hey,

Mark Kinsley: it’s like, it’s like Jordan. He’s gonna get his points. She’s just holding. That’s hope you contain him. That’s, that’s right. Well thanks for being on the show. It’s good to see you my friend. You too, brother.

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