Category Archives: Relationships

The Key to Connection is You

Let’s face the facts

The holiday season is just around the corner.  As always, the conversations around the family dinner table are bound to get uncomfortable.  You need a plan….fast!

Adulting does not have to be hard

Admittedly, I find “adulting” to be a ridiculous word. What the hell does it even mean?  If what one intends is to suggest that being a grown-up isn’t all that fun, I suppose there is some truth to that…but I also have found it is not all that “tough” if one simply makes a conscious decision to actually be an adult. 

I expected to get blown up on this one

Earlier this week, I was inspired to make a statement on social media.  You know the type. A somewhat windy, wordy prose about a singular view of some topic bound to attract the nastiest of responses from those trolls who seem to be abundantly living today in every corner of the internet. But…I wasn’t.

The responses were encouraging

In only 24 hours, I received 50 “likes”, 19 “loves”, 20+ comments, 1 share, and ZERO PEOPLE ARGUING AGAINST MY POINT.  In a word, I was stunned.

 

Here is what I posted

Friends – We don’t all agree on everything. In fact, we share unique opinions on lots of issues. I’m making this request in an effort to do MY PART of being more of the change in the world I want to see:

Stop bashing everybody. Nobody is white/black, gay/straight, American/immigrant, Astros/Dodgers, Christian/atheist/Muslim/Jewish/Buddhist/etc… enough anymore.

Just stop bashing each other. If someone shares their opinion, it is that- their opinion. They are entitled to it the same way you and I are entitled to ours. If you feel compelled, respectfully offer another point of view, and become part of the dialogue.

I am a Christian who loves people of many faiths, orientations, political affiliations, nationalities, races and sports loyalties. None of those people from which I am “different” are a threat to me. In fact, I often learn much from being their friend and listening. I appreciate it when they listen to my perspective, and honor when it doesn’t persuade them to change their stance.

In what appears to be a race to the “lowest common denominator” of mankind, stand tall – be respectful of others – be positive, and most of all….stop being such a jerk to others. Love people. And, yes….I pray for all of us.

You never know the impression you are making on others.

Connection matters

You spend more of your waking hours AT WORK rather than your loved ones.

Your family is yours.  Even if your family is responsible for putting the “fun” in “dysfunctional”!

Not everyone with whom you are forced to interact believes what you believe—and that is okay!

Ask any successful person how they achieved success and most will share with you their story. Learn to emulate  success without copying.

To find success in any aspect of your life…start by meeting others where they are by:

Being vulnerable, yet empathetic;

Listening more;

Talking less;

Demonstrating your character through your actions.

Allowing others to  gravitate toward you, open up, and contribute with their best.

Just jump in!

You can do this. You can do anything!  Even survive that one awkward conversation around the holiday turkey this season. In fact, you just might learn something….even if only to validate what you already believed. 

How do you constantly strive to connect with others and model the kind of world you wish we lived in? Share your thoughts below!

The Jack Butler Method for Using LinkedIn for Sales

In 1983’s classic role-reversal comedy, Mr. Mom, Jack Butler (Michael Keaton) struggles to adapt to the world of a stay-at-home parent.  For the uninitiated, here’s a clip of one of my favorite scenes where the Jack’s “know-how”, gets the better of him:

Much has changed since 1983, not the least of which is the impact the Internet and social media have changed the landscape of how salespeople can build connections and actually sell across platforms like LinkedIn.

Are You Doing It Wrong?

In earlier posts, I’ve shared my lack of understanding why some people call themselves LOINs (LinkedIn Open Networker) and what possible benefit that could deliver, beyond simply “fancying-up” the long-fabled “spray and pray” prospecting method.

For many years, I kept my LinkedIn network exclusive to people I had met off-line at least once.  In more recent years, I have maintained a high degree of what I call “connection integrity”, while allowing an occasional connection when it’s requested by someone with whom I can logically understand why they’d like to connect.

Most often, these connections are typically:

  • industry recruiters (though I’m somewhat selective),
  • industry colleagues (sales leaders, professional speakers, consultants, and other talent development professionals),
  • people affiliated with groups for which I have recently spoken or published an article to their membership, or
  • sometimes those with a shared outside interest (alumni groups, shared hobbies, common political interests/issues).

As a sales leader, I have watched as our Sales Development Representatives (SDRs), through trial and error, have actually found remarkable opportunities via social media connections-notably using Twitter AND LinkedIn Sales Navigator platforms. As a team, we are constantly sharing ideas to help each other succeed and exceed the expectations set by our executive leadership team.

…add value with every interaction, demonstrate thought leadership, and THEN politely ask for an opportunity to learn more about THEIR business prior to actually pitching [the prospect] anything.

The Premature LinkedIn Pitch

sm johnJust this week, I received an invitation to connect from a gentleman in the middle category above.  We appeared to share approximately 40+ connections in the professional speaking/consulting world, so I decided there was likely little harm in connecting.  When I accept virtual unknowns to my network, I often send a quick “thanks for connecting” note which may or may not include a link to schedule an introductory call with me.  Typically, the response is either “thanks, let’s stay in touch” or “I just scheduled a call!”.  Then…this actually happened:

On Tuesday, Scott Cooksey said the following:

Hello, Bob! Thanks for connecting. I see we have MANY common connections. I look forward to your thought-leadership! Scott

[Five hours later], Bob D*********, M.Ed., DCH said the following:

Hi Scott,

My latest book (#44), “************* ******* ********** : How to Prevent, Preempt, and Respond to Every Sales Objection You Get” is now available from booksellers around the world.

If in your travels you encounter sales consultants, trainers, and coaches interested in helping salespeople prevent, preempt, and respond to real objections in real-time, please ask them to contact me.

Our company will provide the support documents FREE (facilitator’s guide, flashcard learning contest guide, sales manager’s guide, company rollout plan, etc.), and they can buy the books wholesale direct from our distributor. Sample facilitator’s guide and more information on www.ObjectionFree********.***.

Here’s the background.

Research with thousands of salespeople confirms:
• Objections that stop most sales are common and repetitive.
• Specific Buyer Beliefs when missing or weak cause these objections.
• There are many ways to establish these beliefs.

Test this:
• Before you buy something, this book for example, what’s just one thing must you believe about it?
• If you don’t believe that, what objection comes to mind?
• But, if you did believe that, what happens to the objection?
• You just demonstrated that a missing Buyer Belief caused the objection and that when the belief is in place, the objection goes away.

Analysis reveals:
• [**redacted**Five bullet pointed facts]

Right now:
• Probability has it that right now you know salespeople who are facing sales stopping or stalling objections, the answers to which are in this book.
• Could these potentially stalled or lost sales be enough to cost-justify the $9.95 for the eBook or the $19.95 for the paperback? Buy the paperback and get the ebook for $2.99 on Amazon.

Action plan for managers, trainers, and coaches:
[**redacted for content**More bullet points listing related items for use…]

A preview of the book content is available on ********* and a lot more information is available on www.ObjectionFree*******.***.

Yesterday, my reseller in Finnland contacted three CEOs with this information and made three sales for hundreds of books and multiple days of coaching and facilitating for each one.

I’ve got access to a lot of resources so let me know how I can support your goals in 2017.

Best,

Bob

Needless to say, I was quite disappointed that my acceptance of his request to connect was taken as an invitation to be drowned in an unsolicited pitch from someone I do not really know anything about.

The Critical (Snarky?) Reply

Clever Time Fact About CoffeeFeeling a little spirited, I crafted this reply [which, by the way, my wife said was kind of crappy. I’m curious to hear what your thoughts are.

Was I out of line? Leave a note below or message me!]

Bob- Let’s try this again.

I accepted your invitation to connect based on our many mutual connections. Your immediate response was a very lengthy, impersonal pitch to me. Typically, that type of occurrence will immediately have me dis-connect you from my network.  To me, it fails to truly build any type of professional interaction salesman to salesman, prior to me really knowing you you are, what you are about, or whether there is an opportunity for our connection to be mutually beneficial. But…. I am curious.

Your claim infers perhaps this particular book is your 44th, which either means you author a lot of shorter (perhaps insightful) ebooks (likely in an effort to draw me deeper into your buying funnel) OR, I am a total baffoon for not actually knowing who you are.

In my role as a Sr Sales Enablement Manager for a Software as a Service (SaaS) startup, I am always looking for ways my SDRs can improve their results when connecting with prospects over LinkedIn and other social media platforms.

Typically, I encourage them to add value with every interaction, demonstrate thought leadership, and THEN politely ask for an opportunity to learn more about THEIR business prior to actually pitching them anything.

Does the strategy you used in our connection often result in a) fruitful dialogue? b) book sales or c) frustration for your efforts? Perhaps we are going about it all wrong.

Respectfully,

Scott

P.S. In a much shorter request today from someone in my network with whom I DO have a relationship, I actually helped him out by purchasing one of his books- without even finishing his pitch. His book went to #1 today at Amazon. [True Story!]

The Recovery

via GIPHY

As I was about to publish this article, I checked my LinkedIn mailbox one last time, and found this [excerpted] from Bob

(Additional commentary from me below is in red):

Hi Scott,

I’m sorry about the impersonal email. Since I completed this book and started being active on LinkedIn last September, I’ve added 2,280 connections. It was getting away from me, but that’s really no excuse. Lesson learned. Thank you. And no, you’re not going about it wrong. I let time constraints interfere with good research to determine how I can help you before asking for your help. See one of my books on the topic (https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00AHHJIEK). LOL. [Humor is always good to restore good faith!]

On the reaction, it’s overall been positive. Probably at the lower end of around 10% response to this and similar response emails I’ve sent. But, we’re seeing book sales steadfastly increasing both domestic and international and I’ve had about a dozen trainer/coaches contact me about using our coaching and facilitating materials…. [Great context for the ask…]


[In the past we] charged $10,000 per trainer for Value Selling Strategies. Some charge upwards of $35,000. With our new “publisher” business model, we’re not charging for the support materials (facilitator’s guide, etc.), we’re not requiring certification (the process is exceptionally easy), and I’m personally providing any additional support needed (at no charge). [Value statement interesting…]

I’m really scrambling. Our big ad just came out in a catalog used by 65K salespeople who sell books as premiums to their corporate clients. We’re doing a full PR campaign with Smith Publicity (specialize in book PR). Our focus is on bulk corporate sales (rather than on sales to the general public) and by encouraging our resellers to set up accounts directly with our distributor (Ingram), we’re just counting backend sales. Yea! [More context]

Number of books: There really are that many books. I started in the business 30 years ago and have written over 70 training courses of which 50 have been converted to web-based training….Back when we were a bricks and mortar company, we had our own printing press. We now outsource that to IngramSpark. [Directly addressing my challenge from my reply- good thing I left some “room” for my assumption to be incorrect – it was!]

Again, I apologize for the impersonal response and will follow yours and my own teachings. My overall goal is to build a global network of independent trainers, consultants, and coaches. One of our resellers in Finnland is going to bring on several of his contacts to help build the business in the Scandinavian countries and Spain (he’s buying another home there). Another reseller in Brazil may do the same. We’re also going after the community college market – huge! [Owned the misstep and reinforced his global effort.]

I’ve got a lot of resources available so let me know how I can help your achieve your goals for 2017.

Best regards,

Bob

Bravo, Bob!

By being quick to respond to a message like the one I sent him, much repair was done for our connection.  In fact, I have decided to keep Bob as a LinkedIn connection. Futher, I extended an invitation to him for an interview as we prepare for season two of the Success Charger Podcast later this year!

[Get more info about the show and listen to our more than 40 episodes streaming now in iTunes or at www.SuccessChargerPodcast.com] It’s FREE!

Let’s Stay Connected!

Follow me in Twitter at @ideacharger for more updates, fun, and commentary. Or send me a brief note to let me know you read this article. We can also connect on LinkedIn…Just don’t SPAM me!

To Connect Faster Start With Why

For the last few weeks, I have been building new workshop to help sales organizations speed up their ability to open the door for new, profitable, lasting client relationships by exploring some relatively simple concepts that deliver results more quickly.

“Great and inspiring leaders of the world think
opposite of most everyone else.”
-Simon Sinek

For one of my clients, however, there was the critical request that a message of increased productivity be delivered while simultaneously preserving a high degree of personal autonomy central to the company’s culture.

In laying the foundation for this topic, I was reminded of this brilliant TEDx Talk from Simon Sinek, who suggests that many marketing and sales organizations have simply been telling their story all wrong. To understand why certain standouts have achieved rock-star-like status, he simply explains how they shifted the way they were telling their own story to customers.

In this talk, delivered at the TEDx Puget Sound in 2009, Sinek provides a simple explanation for how companies like Apple are able to connect more significantly with buyers by flipping the script on how they tell their story.  He shares that “great and inspiring leaders of the world” think opposite of most everyone else.  Explained by what he calls the Golden Circle, it’s revealed that the key to faster connection is to start with why you do what you do ….then explain how you do it …THEN share with the buyer what your product or service actually is.

Consider flipping the script with your prospects and customers this week by talking FIRST about WHY you do what you do.  We’d love to hear your success stories below in the comment section.  Let us hear from you!

Re-Defining Today’s Business MAN with Dan Griffin (Ep 36)

The role of men in our society has been defined by centuries of history…and perhaps, to an extent, upon much mis-information.

In this episode of the Success Charger Podcast, Dan Griffin stops by to share his take on “The Man Rules” and why so often men..and women…get it all wrong.

 

Steeped in long-term work in the field of addiction recovery, Dan’s exploration of what defines men today has led to his authoring several books, speaking regularly around the country, and working tirelessly to defend the rights of men to be men…REAL men.

It just may not be what you  think. Give it a listen and sound off below in the comments section!

Follow Dan Online:

Dan’s Books:

Doug DeVitre – Screen to Screen Selling

devitreIn what seems like the holy grail of business performance, organizations are constantly looking for ways to leverage available resources without sacrificing the quality of services provided to their clients.  In this interview with Doug Devitre, who literally wrote the book on Screen-To-Screen Selling, we unpack how EVERY type of business can leverage currently available technology solutions to solidify customer/client relationships FASTER to generate profits today!

GET IN THE CONVERSATION!

Leave a comment at the bottom of this post on how YOU could be using screen-to-screen technology to enhance your business today?  Already doing it? Tell us HOW!


Advantages to Screen-to-Screen Selling Concepts Covered in this Interview:

  • Reduce/Eliminate Travel Expenses in your company
  • Increase effectiveness of leadership development efforts
  • Accelerate Team Performance
  • Make better decisions (at ALL levels of your organization) FASTER
Here’s  A Video Introduction to Screen-to-Screen Selling!


Doug’s Websites:

www.ScreenToScreenSelling.com (TONS of FREE RESOURCES)

www.DougDevitre.com (Get Doug working with YOU!)

Technologies discussed:

www.doceri.com

www.zoom.us

www.join.me

Scott Cooksey (Host) is a motivational, keynote speaker & leadership development expert who works with organizations to build lasting, profitable client relationships and high-performing teams FASTER.

For information about working with Scott or having him speak at your event, please visit www.IdeaCharger.com

As always, your comments, thoughts, and guest interview suggestions, please email us directly at podcast@ideacharger.com.

Pick up a copy of Doug’s book, Screen-to-Screen Selling HERE
(Full disclosure, this is an Amazon affiliate link, but hey, it doesn’t cost YOU any more to buy it…just sends us a little something for making it available to you!)

Read About Doug in Realtor Magazine: HERE

How to Profit From Your Connections Without Sacrificing Your Integrity

Simply stated, I get a kick out of helping people connect their potential with deliberate action that allows them to enjoy success at a level they previously thought impossible. The good news is that it is relatively easy…if you develop the habit of making connections about other people, instead of you.

“There is no substitute for a true, off-line connection.”
-Scott Cooksey

Without a doubt, social media has changed the way people connect. Or has it? Certainly, technologies like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube have shifted the definitions of a “friend”, “follower”, or “connection” to meanings significantly different than we once thought of them. And while this technology’s popularity makes it easier than ever to “stay in touch” even with the fringes of our networks, there is no substitute for a true, off-line connection.

Are You A Connector or A Collector?

Networking is a word which often brings back memories of hundreds of shallow, self-promoting people swarming around at some random event sponsored by your local chamber of commerce.  You probably have someone specific in your mind right now who claims to be a great networker….a claim backed up by the huge stack of recently collected business cards on their desk. Only, if you look a little deeper, it doesn’t take long to realize those “connections” aren’t really connections at all. In fact, that self-proclaimed networker is nothing but a business card collector – evidenced by the number of cards with their name on them, which they have given you over the years -each with a different company logo on it. (Get my drift?)

In recent weeks, I have given closer inspection to just which of the habits I have observed of people I admire as great connectors (as described in Malcom Gladwell’s instant classic, The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference). The rules listed below will provide a roadmap for you in becoming a sought after person in the network of others.  Each demonstrates just how simply you can integrate subtle changes into your own routine to achieve the status of Connector:

  1. It can never be about you. – I once went to an interview for a job I knew I did not really want, just to get an offer I could turn down.  Shortly after passing the “screener’s interview” at the door, I was asked to stay and visit with the insurance agency’s owner.  Sure enough, he offered me the job.  I immediately turned him down – then sat in his office for nearly an hour listening to him telling me how wonderful and successful he seemed to be.  Presuming for a minute he was half as successful as his puffed up autobiographical interview suggested, I knew my instincts were correct.  Working for him would never be about the development of my own career. It would only be about him.  Successful, perhaps.  Did I ever follow up?  Let’s just say the materials he gave me on the way out the door never made it out of his office building.
  2. Connections should be authentic. I enjoy a great spy/action novel. In between the great number of business & personal development oriented books I read each year, I find it relaxing to just get lost in a great fiction book once in a while.  When I learned a friend of mine had written a novel set in my former hometown of Tulsa, Oklahoma, I downloaded the free sample from his website and sent him a note.  Prior to the release of his book, he kindly forwarded me the final version of the first two chapters.  On the day it was available for purchase from Amazon, I immediately downloaded the book to my Kindle….and posted everywhere I could online how great it was a friend of mine had just released his first in a series of novels.  And let me tell you, the book is a thriller! [Here is a link to the book: The Perfect Candidate. If you download it, please come back to this blog post and let me know what you thought of it!] A few days later, I asked him to preview a new video project of mine ahead of it’s release, and he gladly responded.  Offering his feedback, he then (without my asking) mentioned he would forward the link to a few of his own contacts whose organizations often hired speakers.  That’s a referral I didn’t even have to ask for! [Oh, and he has since released two more volumes with the same main character…they are ALL great reads!]
  3. Focus on giving. – A close personal friend of mine once said, “Don’t just be a face on a roster.” What great advice.  I have learned time and again that connecting people with their best interests at heart will gain you more than trying to shoehorn yourself into being the right solution when you (or the products or services you offer) are simply not a good fit. People remember and the return is much greater in the long-run when you keep this principle in mind.  In the past year, he took the courageous step of opening a car repair franchise…and MANY of the people he’d selflessly helped over the years became his first customers!
  4. If at first you don’t connect, try again. – Several years back, I “lost” the opportunity of a new client to another department of the bank I worked for at the time.  Eleven months later, I had not only wooed that business into my department, but increased it from $400,000 to a $3,500,000 relationship!  Some of my best connections have developed from people I just didn’t “click” with at first.  If your approach didn’t connect with them, it is up to you to show the value of what you can bring to their network. (See Rule #1)
  5. Always maintain your integrity. It is flattering to be asked to help someone out.  I’m sure that your reputation (out of a cast of thousands) has brought forth many efforts to help an obscure Nigerian prince ex-patriate some funds from his country, if only you would email this thoughtful and promising stranger all of your financial details so they can deposit the promised millions into your account for “your trouble”, right?
    Have you ever had a client walk out of my office, with a smile on his face, having lost nearly 95% of the value of his account, carrying only a new coffee mug?  Perhaps earned your single largest commission on a one-time sale with a gross payout to you of $17,000?  I have.  In both cases, the clients had acted foolishly and completely against my advice.  That’s right. By advising them against their respective investments (instead of slobbering over the commissions thus making a complete fool of myself), I earned their trust and respect while demonstrating my own integrity.  And I won their business (and some handsome commission income) while still finding myself able to sleep at night because I had simply told them the truth.

These five rules are the absolute keys to building solid connections with those to whom you do business.  Avoid them at your own peril! The most successful people I have ever studied all possessed the ability think past the short-term, and enjoyed success for the long-term.  Which path will you take?

The Role of the Modern-Day Alumni Association (Ep 25)

In July of 1862, President Abraham Lincoln signed into law the Morrill Land Grant Act as a sweeping effort to create agricultural colleges across the United States.  In 1890, a full 17 years before Oklahoma was to become a state, the institution now known as Oklahoma State University was established in Stillwater, OK.

Chris BatchelderIn December 2015, I had the opportunity to sit down with the Chris Batchelder, President & CEO of the Oklahoma State University Alumni Association. In short, this interview was a lot of fun.

While the conversation begins with some context of the current state of Oklahoma State University today (27,000+ students; huge influx of out-of-state enrollment; excitement, and so much more), we quickly dove deep into the role of the modern-day alumni association.

The primary role of any alumni association is connection.  For those of you who have heard me speak, attended one of my leadership workshops, or regularly listen to the podcast, you have heard me say time and again that “connection” IS the most important skill every person should master.

Here’s just a few highlights from the interview:

  • How alumni associations can partner with the athletic department of their school to do more than just ask for money
  • the new travel partnership exclusively for OSU Alumni Association members (www.okstatefantravel.com)
  • The unique role (and signficant differences) of university foundations, athletic departments and alumni associations
  • How alumni associations are serving the career transition needs of seasoned employees (not just recent graduates)
  • so much more!

The OSUAA is alive and well with over 105 active chapters and “watch party” groups serving it’s base.  Did you know that 80% of Oklahoma State alumni members live within 50 miles of an active group?

Are you active in your own Alumni Association?  What is your experience with Corporate Alumni Groups?  How do YOU stay connected with others who have a common, emotional bond to a time or place?  We want to hear!  Share your stories and associations below!

To book Scott Cooksey to speak or lead a workshop at your organization, check out www.IdeaCharger.com!

Do You Know The Value of Your Network? (Ep 23)

This week’s episode is short on show notes, but HUGE on energized thinking.

Listen in as Scott checks in from the road in Dallas, Texas, on the eve of his first client workshop of the year!

We will be talking about his concerns surrounding the current trend toward “big data” and how it seems to be driving lot of questionable tactics in business; password frustrations & how a recent, ill-advised laptop purchase reminded him how much his network was really worth….and prompted a new “hide the electronics when irritated” policy for 2016. 

It’s fast.  It’s furious.  It will hit home for you.

Give it a listen and leave your comments on the show page at www.ideacharger.com/episode23 or email Scott at podcast@ideacharger.com

_____________

Scott Cooksey works with organizations and individuals to (re)energize their business and more rapidly produce profitable, lasting client relationships through a variety of offerings.  Find out how Scott can work with you or your team at www.ideacharger.com and, of course, keep listening to the show!  

New episodes EVERY TUESDAY MORNING! (U.S.)

How to Fix Customer Service in One Step – A United Airlines Disaster Story

Welcome to 2016!  Following a little downtime with family over the Christmas and New Year’s break, I didn’t originally plan to release an episode this week, but alas….I was completely inspired by the blatant lack of great customer service from a major airline during my travels.

Let me be clear.

I have had some WONDERFUL customer service experiences from a number of travel and related service industries.  Everything from the unexpected free rental car in Little Rock from National Car Rental (I’m just glad they didn’t call the police because the SUV I was driving was technically “missing”) to the presidential suite upgrade at the Marriott in south Texas (the only perk of checking in after midnight followed by an early departure later that morning) to the exceptional on-board service from Judy McClure (of then Continental Express airline).

Here is my ORIGINAL POST about Judy.
Here is the FOLLOW UP…three years later (Yep….Judy did it AGAIN!)

This holiday, however, even in the midst of multiple social media posts (one including my preschool daughter asleep on the floor next to her tablet…exhausted from the delay – and THAT was JUST TO DROP OUR BAGS BEFORE SECURITY!) despite the remarkably executed actions of a few (and I stress FEW) employees,  United Airlines simply flat-lined on customer service overall making it easy to bid farewell to 2015.

You are not responsible for HOW your customers wind up at your doorstep or WHAT HAPPENED to them before you arrived, but YOUR RESPONSE WILL DETERMINE WHAT HAPPENS NEXT.  There is only one word you need to master: EMPATHY.

[This podcast includes a live recording FROM THE AIRPORT with all the details of a horrible experience….at this posting I am STILL WAITING for United Airlines to take me up on the offer to meet with them at Houston’s Bush Intercontinental Airport. [I made the offer to United via the “what else do you want us to know about your experience on December 28th, 2015” question of their annoying post-flight survey – I even provided my cell phone number, email address and offered to drive 22 miles to the airport to meet with them to explain….Hey, at this point, I’ll even offer them ONE FREE TRAINING SESSION if they’d invite me to meet with a group of their supervisors and/or airport reps.]

Have a travel nightmare (or awesome customer service save) story of your own?  Share it below in the comment section!

Ep 21 – New Year’s Challenge

First of all, I want to wish a sincere “Happy Birthday” to my Dad.  For all the years he has offered me advice, each year brings the time between him dishing it out to me actually taking action on it shortens.  If only I could have HIM create a podcast and record it just for you…but, alas, he claims to be retired.

This coming year (or really ANYTIME you are up to the challenge), I want you to upgrade the people with whom you spend the most time.   I know, you are required to be at work and interact daily with Ashley from Accounts Payable, Michael from Marketing & Stanley from Shipping…but that’s not who I am talking about.  No, not your loved ones, either.  The unfortunate truth about your family is that most of your waking hours aren’t spend with them, either. It’s the people you CHOOSE to spend your discretionary time with each week.

“We become the average of the five people with whom we spend the most time.”

– Attributed to so many different people on the internet, let’s just accept this as FACT, shall we?

A couple of years ago, I committed to meet with a group of colleagues who are all speakers, facilitators, and experts of various topics on a monthly basis.  While our businesses were, by trade, quite similar, how we each go about running them varies somewhat.  Each of us is at a different stage of maturity with our business (some might argue in general as well)…but committing to get together regularly and hold each other accountable for progress has proven a worthwhile exercise. Over these last two years, we have seen the ups and downs of one another’s practices, and been there to lend support, friendship, ideas and sometimes just a listening ear.

One of the members of my group is a sales leadership consultant, speaker and fellow podcaster, Jim Jacobus.  In fact, it was Jim who challenged the members of our group to each launch a podcast of our own….so I owe him a THANK YOU on behalf of each of the listeners of the Success Charger Podcast for his encouragement for me to even launch the show in the first place.

I am a listener of Jim’s Podcast, and in a 4-part series he started on November 19th, 2015, he has again encouraged me to raise the bar.

Sometimes it is just better to send you to the source, than try to explain what I learned for myself.  My challenge to you this week is to download and listen to the four-episode series Jim produced on the “Four Questions You Should Ask Yourself Each Year”.

My wife and I have taken these four questions and are carving out a few hours this week to sit down and discuss what they mean to us in the context of our marriage/family as well as both of our careers.

Here are the links to the episodes on Jim’s Podcast, and I hope you’ll find them as helpful as I did.  (HINT:  If you are short on time and just want to cut to the chase, he does a nice, albeit brief, recap on the fourth episode….but I’d recommend listening to all four.  They are about 20 or so minutes each.)

You can also find these on iTunes Podcasts: Search for “In The Sales Arena” or via this link (Epsiodes 64-67)

  1. Four Questions to Ask Yourself
  2. What is Not Working for You and How Can You Make It Start Working?
  3. What New Thing Do You Want To Do In 2016?
  4. What Are You Going to do in 2016 That is BIG?

Listen with the links above, download them for that trip to the in-laws, and HAPPY NEW YEAR!