EP 572 -Creating A Culture Of Accountability With Mike “C-Roc” Ciorrocco

NCS 572 | Culture Of Accountability

NCS 572 | Culture Of Accountability


Nowadays, there are times when people would be able to get away from the consequences of the things they did because we don’t hold them to a high enough standard to make sure they understand the gravity of what they’ve done. However, creating a culture of accountability is not only for the people around you, but also for yourself – you hold yourself responsible for your mindset, and thus, your success. Mike “C-Roc” Ciorrocco is a motivator, facilitator, dynamic public speaker, and the host of his own podcast. He speaks to Scott Carson about overcoming obstacles and creating a culture of accountability. Together, they talk about how Mike overcame early hardships to become successful, and how a positive mindset and success can be created in little actions everyday.

Listen to the podcast here:

Creating A Culture Of Accountability With Mike “C-Roc” Ciorrocco

We’ve got somebody who is lighting the world on fire, who’s doing some amazing things. He likes to ask you, what are you made of? Why is it relevant here on The Note Closers Show? This guy is a rockstar doing amazing things. He got back from Las Vegas speaking at the 10X Convention, Grant Cardone. I’ll give you a little bit of insight of this guy. He’s a motivator, facilitator, dynamic public speaker and a fierce friend and coach. At his core, he’s a grinder. A guy who had a fire lit in his belly at an early age.

This fire has led to inspire others, see the greatness inside themselves using past life events to fuel their fire. The guy I’m talking about is Mike “C-Roc” Ciorrocco. He’s the Manager at Nations Lending, a residential mortgage company, out in the Maryland area. He and his three best friends built one of the most profitable divisions within Nations Lending from the ground up, assisting home buyers finance the purchase of their dream homes. He’s got a passion for truly helping others. That’s why we’re honored to have Mike C-Roc here on the show. What’s up, Mike? How’s it going?

Scott, what’s going on? I’m happy to be here.

Let’s talk a little bit of business before get into passion because you got a big passion. I want to leave a big chunk of that for that. Talk a little bit about what you’re doing with Nations Lending and you be in a catalyst out there helping people buy homes. Let’s talk about the market and your business right now. What do you say?

We went to Nations in February of 2018. I’ve only been with two companies in my life. I had to make a switch unfortunately, leave those details out, but I took 22 employees in three branches to Nations Lending after seeing the culture that they have there. That’s the idea that we wanted to take with us on our new venture at the new company was build culture first foundation and they fit right into that. Since that, our business has skyrocketed 400%. We went from 3 branches to 7 branches and 22 employees to 35 now. We’re going to continue to grow. We have big plans with that. We do mostly purchase business, but we have some refi that we’re not afraid of either.

Are you doing business in Maryland or are you doing in other states as well?

No. The company, Nations Lending, is licensed in 50 states, but our group mainly does somewhere between 15 to 20 states. We’re located in the mid-Atlantic region in Maryland and Delaware. We also have a Miami branch that we’re going also to look to grow the Southeastern Florida region as well.

A friend of mine who’s an agent down in Miami and Brooklyn neck of the woods, I need to put her in touch with you once you get rocking and rolling out there. The market has done good. The US announces that we’re on 12.5-year highs of real estate. Where do you see the market going? You’ve been around for a while. We saw that crazy care. We were talking about that when you had me on your show a while back. Where do you think the market is going? Do you see a change taking place at any point? I know that a lot of investors out there, a lot of people go, “Do I buy now or do I wait? What do I do?” Let’s talk a little about that.

In our area, inventory is still low and building is boom and had taken off. Everybody thought the rates were going to go up. They did exactly what everybody thought they weren’t going to do. For me to speculate on that would be pure speculation and crystal ball. All I can say is that we have set ourselves up and this is what I’d like to talk about to create our own economy in our group. What I want to do is I want to establish a mindset amongst our group that the economy and the rates do not matter to us. We do the work that it takes to overcome any of that and we create our own economy. That’s part of what do you made of movement that I have here and we’ll get into more of that later.

I wanted to start getting known, not in our local markets but globally. I knew that if I got known globally and to be obsessed with it every day when I wake up, my team would see that. The local markets take care of themselves. I hate to get off the topic of the market because I don’t know what’s going to happen with the market. What I want to do is I want to create an attraction model. I want real estate agents and buyers to come to us because we’re so great. We’re doing our follow-up like maniacs. We leverage the success and that attraction model brings in employees. It brings in real estate agents and also customers.

NCS 572 | Culture Of Accountability

Culture Of Accountability: You can have a one-man show, but you’re going to hit a ceiling at some point.


That’s one of the major things that has set you apart from a lot of people out there. A lot of times, it’s cutthroat one man shows out there. With what you’re doing, you’re building that environment. You’re doing a great job of community that people can rely on. It’s a friendly place. God knows in a lot of other places, real estate agents, brokers, it’s cutthroat. It depends on what is going on. Every worry about the end of the month, building an environment and as you say, an economy is taking care of the clients. No matter whether the rates are up or down, everybody’s buying. Everybody is selling. Everybody is looking at refinancing for the most part. There’s always deals to be done. It’s a matter of making sure that you move with it. Have an area where your staff can do great things and get rocking and rolling.

You can have a one-man show. You’re going to hit a ceiling at some point. You could probably make some money, but you’re going to be limited at some point. We have a business of mortgages as our vehicle in life to get to what we need to do to pay our bills and take care of our families. Scott, what we’re in is the people building business. I can’t build people with me being by myself. If I can build people and help them grow their family’s wealth, help them grow their relationships, their communication leadership skills, it starts to manifest itself into a big giant snowball. That’s what I was talking about the snowball effect. My buddy, Brandon Dawson, talks about the hurricane effect. I like to look at that because I get a kick out of helping people. This is what I wake up in the morning for. If I’m by myself or a one man show and worried about the scarcity mindset and trying to be cutthroat and all that, it doesn’t work. I’d rather make a little bit less money per loan or per person or whatever and grow it big than make a lot on a few deals. That’s my mindset of it.

It’s a smart mindset. You’d rather build a relationship and a lifelong client versus trying to squeeze every dollar out of them on the frontend side, go out and find new clients. Whereas we all know it’s better to keep a client versus to go out and find new ones for you. That’s a smart thing to do. I love your passion. What led you to have that drive? You remember a specific time when something clicked and you’re like, “This is the route I want to go and I want to plant my flag and go this direction.”

Let’s go back many years ago. It happened when I was eleven-years-old. My parents split up before I could even remember. I came from a broken home, probably like a lot of your audience. I don’t remember my parents together except for wedding pictures. When I was eight years old, I decided to move in with my dad and his new wife. It broke my mom’s heart. For three years, I’m not going to get into a lot of detail. I went through a lot of traumatic psychological, mental abuse. It’s not a healthy environment. At eleven-years-old, I was mature enough to understand that I didn’t know the word culture, but I knew that it wasn’t environment-conducive to happiness and success.

My dad was my hero. He had a masonry business. My dad had a brick company and he always used to have $100 wad in his pocket. I always looked up to him for that. We had money. We had things. The happiness wasn’t there. I explained to my mom, “I need to get out of here.” She said, “If you’re going to do this, stick to your guns,” which is a lesson I carry with me. Stick to your guns if you believe in something, they’re going to try to talk you out of it. I came home from school one day at eleven-years-old, my dad said, “Get in your room.” I went in there and waited for him to come in. He came in with some legal papers and said, “It says here you want to move in with your mom. Is that something you sure you want to do?”

They’re not well off. They don’t have what we have here. “Are you sure this is what you want to do? You don’t want to do that.” I stuck to my guns and I said, “I want to make the move.” At that moment, he pulled out a wad of $100 bills that I always looked up to my hero for, peeled $100 bill off, crumpled it up and threw it at me and said, “You’re going to need this when you’re living on the streets with your mother one day.” At eleven-years-old, at that moment, I was destroyed. My hero had given up on me. I also know because I’m stubborn to a fault, Scott. I was going to prove him wrong. He wasn’t going to be right.

I was going to be a better father, husband, businessman person than him. I was going to light the world up because I’m not going to let him win. I don’t know if that’s right or wrong, but I’m telling you, transparent and being genuine with you here. Number two, I knew that I couldn’t be the only one in that situation that had been given up on. I knew other people had been. I wasn’t sure how I was going to do it, but I wanted to help people. I started by being a role model, doing everything I could to be successful after going through something like that.

People can see that if you went through that and you could still accomplish what Mike’s accomplishing, you’re good. I’ve been living that life and that fire has been lit. I received some validation of why I was feeling certain ways. I became aware of what my purpose was. It sucks that it took this long to do that because I was 41 years old when I finally figured this out. I feel like I wasted a lot of time despite the fact that I’ve been evolving into this person that I am now. I feel like I’m on short time now to accomplish my goals. I’m on hyperspeed. Every day I wake up. I know I’m in short time. Who knows how long I have on this planet, but I need to help millions of people and that’s my goal is to get out and help millions of people.

What are you made of came from me being big on self-talk, self-validation and constantly talking to myself, “You get a tough situation, what are you made of? What have you been through? This is nothing compared to what you’ve been through.” I also say, “I’m built for this. I got this.” Numerous other things, I’m getting better every day. I’m the man, I’m an animal. I have these voices in my head. I try to fill my cup up constantly with positive juice instead of negative juice, and I’m big on that. A lot of people don’t like to hear that stuff. They have a problem inside that they need to work on. That’s where my fire is and I’m not going to quit. I’m going to keep firing it up. I was talking to you before we got on here about a little setback that we’ve had in our business, but I’m even more charged now than before that little setback.

That’s the thing is setbacks happen all the time for people. Most people don’t realize the most successful people in their fields have setbacks all the time. It’s how they deal with it. Whether they let it sit there and affect their rest of their day, the rest of their week, or they put it beside themselves and move in the right direction. That’s exactly what you did. It’s not working out. We’re going to move this one direction and start moving that positive energy before it. Whereas a lot of people, we all know the Debbie Downers in life out there. Its struggle with overcoming and it seems like they attract issues because they’re constantly in that negative mindset.

I wrote my goals down every day, twice a day, but I always write a quote because my mentor told me to do that. I listened to my mentor because he’s where I want to be and doing what I want to do. That’s how I pick a mentor. My quote was on this, setbacks are like pulling a rubber band back, which sets you up for a wild momentum filled ride. That’s the quote that I wrote now. I try to imagine that, envision that stuff in my head, like, “We’re going on back. The rubber bands being pulled back. Let’s get ready. Strap on because we’re going to excel now.” It’s all attitude and mindset. That’s all it is.

Is there anything that you do for our audience, Note Nation, who are going through time or struggling? Anything, tools that you have programmed yourself? Anything that you say internal talk beside the rubber band thing, which I love that quote. It’s a great analogy for things, but anything that you’re doing to help you overcome that. Maybe the little things that you’ve shared in your audiences to help people overcome obstacles that you’d like to share.

First of all, I have a blueprint that I’ve created of what I use to find out what I’m “made of.” That blueprint is a four-step process and basically about going back into your past, far back as you can remember. You’re writing events down far back as you can remember first and some powerful, impactful events or things that have happened to you or said to you or whatever. You write them down in a quiet place. It takes some time to do this. What I like to do after that is the right lessons learned from those things. Some people say, “Don’t look back, look forward,” but we’re made of something. All of the events and things that were input into us over our life, our experiences, we have to use those things to drive off of.

That’s what I do. Also, what I do is I also constantly read. I know people hear about reading all the time and write your goals down and all this. This is one of my favorite books right now, Beyond Positive Thinking. This is dense of a book. What we do is we have exercise, my group and I, I read ten pages in the morning, ten pages in the evening. That’s twenty pages a day times 30 days a month. That’s 600 pages. That should get you three books. If you’re not reading anything, if you’re reading a book a year, like most average Americans, if you can read three books a month, that’s 36 books a year. Tell me at the end of the year you’re not going to be better off.

I’m constantly filling my head with that positiveness. One of the things that talk about in this book have you think of a glass that’s dirty water and you take that dirty water and you put it under the sink of clean, positive water flowing into it. Eventually, all the dirty water comes out and the clean overtakes it. That’s what I’m constantly thinking to myself. I came back from Vegas, a 3-hour difference coming back to the East Coast. What I did was I constantly said, “I don’t feel like getting out of bed, but I’m going to do it anyway because I’m going to overcome something.” I’ll read. I’ll write my goals down. I go to the gym. It was the first day back. I pushed through it. I feel great, but I didn’t quit despite my feelings.

It’s a constant thing where I’m like, “The other thing, Scott, is I know people are watching me.” I know that since I put this movement out and I’ve taken leadership in my company, people were watching me. If you have kids, you have a wife or husband, they’re watching you. Every opportunity that you have to make a decision that should go through your head is this decision tear me down or building me up. I don’t care about what people think. Don’t get me wrong. Lessons learned of how does he react to this? Everybody, I don’t care whether you like it or not, you’re a role model. Those are the things that I do. It’s worked.

Culture Of Accountability: Setbacks are like pulling a rubber band back, which sets you up for an extremely wild, momentum-filled ride.


When you get to a leadership position or you put yourself out there, people look at you and all about walking in the light. Are you walking the walk? You’re talking and leading by example. It’s not saying you’re not going to have good days or bad days, but you still lead by example. You have the mindset and you build a stronger mindset on a daily basis with those actions that you’re talking about, ten pages in the morning, ten pages in the evening. It’s not difficult at all to do. People need to do that. It’s little things like that which build strength. It’s like working out on a regular basis. You’re not going to be muscle-bound and drop 50 pounds in a week. If you do it a little bit every day, it goes a long way in building muscles, endurance. It’s not only health-wise but also mental health-wise for you out there as well. People are playing excuses to fail. It’s overcoming those excuses to take action. As you’d like to say prove what you’re made of.

We say stack and wins.

I was going to say that because I remember that. Let’s talk about it. When did you start? What are you made of? Let’s talk a little about that because you’ve got a movement going. It’s doing some great stuff.

Not to promote anyone, I came back from the 10X Growth Conference. I was going to speak and tell my story. What has transpired since I got involved with the Cardone team and the 10X movement? Floyd Mayweather and Dana White showed up unexpectedly and I got bumped. The value that we’ve received at this growth conference, millions of dollars’ worth of value. I have plenty of stages to speak on. I was excited that they came, but the thing is that in late 2017, I’ve started reading the 10X rule. I got on Cardone University after going to Growth Con 3. I started building relationships inside of Cardone Enterprises with some of the guys there because they’re great people to be around.

I want to surround myself constantly with great people that are on the rise and pushing for those big things. I’ve been careful of taking people that are fighting against my dream or fight against my stream, like salmon and removing them out of my life because I don’t want people stealing from me, my visions and dreams. That’s important to me. Once I got on that my team got on Cardone University, we started studying and diving into what we should be doing, our volumes skyrocketed, when I saw that I’m the type of guy that when I buy something in order to validate my purchase, I want to make the people that I buy from look as good as possible and help them out.

I told them I want to be a case study for you guys. I want to be one of the best results that you’ve ever had. I tell that to everyone that I use, whether it’s my Instagram helper guys that do that, the guys that helped my podcast, all these different things. What happened was I started writing my goals down every day, as my mentor said. I started writing down start a blog or podcast because I know that can help you get known. I’d wrote or a podcast. I started doing a blog weekly, writing it up, putting it up there, get some content out. I was on a podcast in October. It was a buddy of mine that invited me onto his podcast and I’m like, “This is fun.” I didn’t know how easy it was to do a podcast. I thought it was difficult and I don’t think I’m letting the cat out of the bag for anyone.

I should share that with everyone. Podcasts are easy. I was trying to shy away from it because I thought it was complicated. Once I realized how easy it was, I started putting the wheels in place. I started writing down my goals, top ten podcasts. I want to be the best. I want to be sought after. I write goals down like crazy, like big goals. I want to be known by all over the world. I want to be sought after all over the world. That’s some crazy stuff because I’m a guy from a little town in Maryland. Things started to transpire and started to move at lightspeed because of the massive action and the goals that I was putting in place. This is what do you made of movements reached Africa, Australia, Europe. I’m getting people to feedback from all over the world. It’s crazy. I’m getting started.

You’ve got an amazing podcast. Highly recommend that, if you’re listening to this, you will get a lot out of it by going over to listen to What Are You Made Of podcast. I was honored to be a guest there. That’s why, as I came in, we got to get you on here. You’re a positive example, a shining example of self-programming to get what you want to accomplish to do big things. Our brain is a computer. It’s all about programming my mind with what we take in is what we get out of it. You’ve shared that stuff. I’m willing to bet that when you said you listen to your mentor, Grant Cardone.

Brandon Dawson works with Cardone now too and also Richie Dolan. Those guys have been fantastic to work with. They care, changed my life. I want to give them all the credit because I had to take action. The fact of the matter is that they understand that you can be successful, still share with people and give a hand up to others. By the way, Scott, What Are You Made Of Movement, I forgot to tell you this. I believe everybody’s got a story like I shared my story, but many people don’t share their story. The reason that they don’t share their stories. They’re embarrassed by it. They think it’s ordinary. They don’t think anybody will care. The fourth most important ones, what I fell into until I heard Pete Vargas speak at Growth Con 3 is, they underestimate the power of their story has to inspire millions of people. If anybody knows that and they could understand that, they will share their story. I’m trying to get that word out for people to do that, to share their stories, to inspire the people and it also acts as therapy for yourself.

Voicing and going back, going back and thinking of the traumatic or stressful times in your life and what you’ll learn from it, that’s therapy. When we try to hide bad things, there’s always a way to find his bubble up to the surface and affect what we’re going on until we deal with those issues in the past, whether it’s family, work, divorce. A lot of people go through bad things. It’s life. Life is a shit sandwich and sometimes we all got to take a bite out of it. You’ve got to figure out how to swallow it down and get beyond it. With your team, what’s one thing that stood out that your team has responded to you. Was it a surprise for you with everything you’ve changed over the last couple of years?

I’ve always been an animal. I’ve been hard on my kids. I’m hard on my team and I’ve always had this thing where my partners and some of my processor managers would say, “You’re being a little too hard on him.” You’re telling them if they don’t do what we need them to do the way we need to do it. They don’t have to work here. We’ll do it without them. I always started to feel bad. I started having a conflict in my mind. What Brandon and Grant did for me was they gave me validation that I’m acting the right way. When I cracked that code of the validation came at like, you can be an animal. People want that. They crave accountability.

Even if it feels like you’re being a jerk sometimes, they crave it. They might give you pushback, but they crave it. If they don’t, they can exit and it’s okay. Every time we’ve let someone go that didn’t get on the program, our business shot up right afterward like that rubber band momentum thing. They gave me validation for that. That’s the biggest thing for our team is everybody started giving me feedback. Stay on us. We appreciate it. I know it doesn’t feel good. It’s snap stay on it. That’s a whole culture shocker there. That’s what happened. Once I had that animal unleashed inside of me to be able to do that, it’s a good feeling. I love seeing everybody prosper and develop from it.

What’s your spirit animal? You’ve got to have a spirit animal, a tiger, a lion. What do you think, gorilla?

My nickname is C-Roc so I guess crocodile. My driver’s cover on my golf bag is a gorilla.

Everybody talks at some point. Mine is an elephant. I always think of the elephant. I’m not an Alabama fan, but the elephant otherwise falls into it for the most part.

Scott, this podcast has yielded to a book now that’s coming out. It’s called What Are You Made Of As Well? The blueprint that I was telling you about, you can get a sneak peek of the book and also subscribe to get updates, news from the What Are You Made Of Movement, the book release and presales. That website is Waymocrew.com/blueprint.

NCS 572 | Culture Of Accountability

Culture Of Accountability: Constantly surround yourself with great people that are on the rise and pushing for the big goals in life.


When you get that book out, we want to have you back on and talk about that as well. I want to ask a question or I hope it’s okay. Going back to the moment that your dad crumpled up that $100 and threw it back out to you, do you still talk to your dad or anything like that?

I went through a phase where I was talking to them again for a little bit, but not in my wheel here. I don’t talk to him. I texted him a happy birthday and all that, but I never get any response. Hopefully, I’m doing a lot of podcasts on my own and getting on shows. If he happens to hear this and reaches out to me, I would love it because I have no animosity or ill will. I’ve forgiven anything that’s ever happened. My dad went through something and he’s had his reasons for what he did. As a matter of fact, Scott, I don’t know where I’d end up if I weren’t in that situation. I had that fire lit. I want to tell the story because I want everybody that feels like they’ve been given up on that they don’t have to quit. They can be successful. They can use that. That’s why I tell the story not to ever tear my dad down by any means. I’d hope you hear this and then reach out to me at some point.

I asked that because our parents inspire us in good and bad. I’ve had quite a few friends that had similar circumstance with one of their parents. They built their business up and they felt accomplished. There was never a sense of I had to prove something to my father. I don’t get that from you at all. I know that you’ve accomplished something there. I didn’t know if it had been any type of parents coming back saying, “You’ve done it. I’m proud of you.”

One time we were at a wedding or something and he told me that it does eat at him that happened. I don’t know the exact wording of it, but it was either eats at him that it had happened and he felt that I was better off to let me go. That gave me a little bit of validation. I don’t think I’ve shared that with anybody before, but I remembered that now that you asked and that kept me pushing up. The fire may be wears off a little bit. You get that and you’re like, “Now there’s some more gasoline. Let’s go.”

You mentioned something good. It’s a great habit. A lot of people struggle, not positive people, but people that aren’t rowing the same boat, moving the same direction for your, or maybe a little bit of an albatross dragging a little bit. The more negativity you can remove from your life is a lot faster, less drag, the faster the boat goes. Sometimes you’re the closest people to us that we’ve got to let maybe not go, but set aside for a while, we get things rocking and rolling.

They’ll always come back once you’re successful. You got to make sure that if you’re going to cut people out of your life because they’re dream killers, you better make sure you go after your dreams.

Mike, what’s the best way for them to reach out to you, to connect with it? Is there other ways that they want you to reach out and touch base with you?

I’m all over social media. I have a great Instagram account that I stay active on. It’s @MikeyCRoc.

What’s your big goal for the rest of the year?

I have this WAYMO Movement going, What Are You Made Of, Waymo Crew and I’m having a six-week mentor coaching call with twenty individuals. Every six weeks, I’m going to do it if I get tough participation. I’m going to start two at a time, but I have this first one’s about sold out. I’ve given a good discount on it to get people in. I’m coaching people on business and salespeople too on how to treat their profession as a business.

Mike, thanks for coming on the show. Thanks for sharing, first and foremost. That’s always a great thing and I appreciate it. We look forward to watching it grow even more, taking the movement even bigger and better. You do amazing things also with a podcast. I look forward to staying in touch within and us growing together on some things.

Thank you, Scott. I appreciate you.

That’s going to wrap it up for this episode. Hopefully, you took some nuggets from what Mike shared there for you, write down your goals, do a little bit of reading each day. You get that dirty water replaced with good water. Trust me, if you do that, you’ll be drinking from a fountain of positivity and the people around you will start to take that as well and absorb your energy in the positive. Either they’ll help support you or they’ll get the hell out of the way of the train as you’re building. Go out, take some action. We look forward to seeing you all at the top.

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About Mike Ciorrocco

NCS 572 | Culture Of AccountabilityC-Roc is a motivator, facilitator, dynamic public speaker and a fierce friend and coach. At his core, he’s a grinder – just a guy who had a fire lit in his belly at an early age. That fire has led him to inspire others to see the greatness inside of themselves using past life events to fuel their fire.

Mike is a manager at Nations Lending, a residential mortgage company. He and his three best friends have built one of the most profitable divisions within Nations Lending from the ground up, assisting home buyers finance the purchase of their dream homes.

His passion is truly helping others. Whether it’s his employees, partners, real estate agents, or anyone else looking to better their business, personal life, or mental game, C-Roc always is up for the challenge.

He has spoken in front of thousands of real estate agents, showing them how to grow their business not only via traditional marketing methods, but also by using outside-the-box digital and social media marketing. He dives deep into his past during these talks to show how you can feed off good and bad experiences. His forthcoming book is titled, “What Are You Made Of?”

C-Roc lives in Ocean City, MD with his wife Jennifer and their two children, Nicolas and Sophia.

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