Mentor Individually

I have realized that there are some key steps to empowering your people and building leaders not followers. Mentoring is one of the best ways to do so. A mentor is “an experienced and trusted adviser,” one who shows the way. It isn’t bragging or showing off. John Wooden said, “Mentoring isn’t about celebrating your own insight but about sharing wisdom. When you pass on the lessons of your life with someone else, it’s not you who are teaching – it’s your experience.” To mentor individually means to pay attention to each person’s interests, desires and capabilities, to recognize that everyone doesn’t fit the same mold, and wisdom is most effectively shared one-on-one. Mentoring is an investment in your people which requires time, energy and effort on the part of the leader. My friend Don Yaeger, who coauthored The Two Most Important Days of Your Life with me, used to
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Great Leadership Is Driven By Passion

If the Number One thing we want is committed people, we need to start by looking in the mirror. Leaders who lack passion will have followers who lack commitment. You’ve heard it said that the speed of the leader is the speed of the pack. That is especially true when we look at the attitude, the work ethic, the energy, and commitment of the leader. Pure passion will permeate your team, it will rub off on them, and it will inspire them. The word passion originated at the time of Jesus Christ and was used to describe Christ’s suffering. Knowing the etymology of the word gives us a unique insight into its meaning. Passion means being willing to suffer for something that you love. The kind of passion that inspires commitment shows up early, stays late, finds solutions, engages the team, and gets the job done. Save Save
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If You Use PowerPoint – Read This

Last week at one of the events I keynoted the speaker before me used 65 blank white slides with bullet point paragraphs in black font that he read word for word from screen! – Seriously painful. So to make sure that doesn’t happen anymore – here are 18 tips for anyone who uses PowerPoint to present: (I have to give credit to Ruby Newell-Legner for many of the tips below)   Finish your presentation before starting to work on your Power Point slides Remember – PowerPoint is NOT your Presentation. It is a visual support to your message Use a consistent template slide for consistency and branding Keep slide design simple and clean Limit text to 6 lines (or less) per slide and 6 words (or less) per line Cover only one idea per slide Avoid Italics and vertical lettering Minimize animation – Avoid too many transition styles or a
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Create Great Experiences & They Will Come Back

Last week I took my family to try a new pizza place by our house – Blaze Pizza. When we went to pay, the cashier told us that the man at the back of the line was covering our meal and the other family in line as well. I told him it wasn’t necessary but he insisted and so we thanked him for his kindness. Then as I waited for our pizza I talked to our generous new friend and he shared one of the best marketing ideas I have ever heard. He is friends with the franchisee who owns the restaurant and his friend often sends him gift cards to his restaurant and asks him when he comes to buy lunch or dinner for everyone in line. The owners philosophy is, ‘if you create great experiences they will talk about it to others and they will come back.” He’s
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All Excuses Are Equal

Over 10 years ago we were a couple weeks away from our first child being born. I was busy growing our business and Sarah was getting everything ready at home. I started the process of recruiting a new sales rep. We had a great discussion and he seemed like this could be a good fit. The next day Sarah went into labor early and our daughter was born. The whirlwind of our first baby took over. We were at the hospital making sure mother and baby were great. Then we brought her home and were trying to figure out what to do and how to do it. It took me more than a week to get back to the sales rep I was trying to recruit. I told him that we had a baby and I was sorry for the gap in our conversations and then he very honestly said,
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3 Types of Influence

Whether it’s at home, at work, at play, or anywhere in between, our influence on those around us will fall into three categories: Situational Influence – People follow you because they have to. Position and authority most often determine this kind of influence. A political leader, for example, or a CEO, or a school teacher, or a traffic cop. This is the most common type of influence, based on position, title and authority. It is influence bequeathed, not personally earned, and exercising it can be done lazily because following is not a choice. When people are forced or compelled to follow you in a particular situation, the most you will ever get out of them is compliance. And as Dondi Scumaci likes to say, “Compliance will never take you where commitment can go.” If you are an influencer who has a position of authority, step back and ask yourself this
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Stop Giving Sales Presentations (Have Sales Conversations)

  If you are teaching, leading, selling or speaking, your purpose is to engage your audience. Above all, you want to grab their attention and get them involved. Your prospect, client, customer, employee, team member, or student has to be engaged or they won’t buy your product, act on your idea or implement your plan. Without engagement, there is no influence. In the spirit of engagement, I believe that we should move from giving sales presentations to having sales conversations. There’s a huge difference between the two. A sales presentation, by definition, is a monologue, while a sales conversation is a dialogue—it involves both parties and the emphasis is on the buyer, not the seller. I know we have all done this before. We give a sales presentation (a monologue) and then at the end we ask, “Do you have any questions?” There is nothing about that model that makes it about the audience; nothing that makes them part
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7 Reasons Talented People Stay

Building a thriving business is more than having a great product or unique service. The great differentiator in today’s world is your people. So finding talented people is important but keeping talented people is crucial. Talented people will always have opportunities- so how do you get them to stay? Talented employees stay because they are: 1. Paid Well 2. Appreciated 3. Listened to 4. Promoted 5. Involved in decision making 6. Mentored 7. Challenged If you look at that list – the takeaway to me is that your leadership approach will ultimately determine whether your talented people stay or leave. Remember – Partnership is The New Leadership Save
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Learn to Communicate Assertively

Correct communication is key to success in any type of leadership.  But often, we run into individuals who miss the mark.   A passive communicator doesn’t speak up!  They don’t allow their voice to be heard and are often overlooked.  They leave the conversation with the mindset “You’re ok, I’m not.”   An aggressive communicator will dominate communication, using body language, loud speech and intimidation to steer a conversation to suit their needs. They leave the conversation with the mindset “I’m ok, you’re not.”   Assertive communication is what we are aiming for.  An assertive communicator makes sure their voice is heard, but also all the other voices around them. They set the tone of open communication, creating a relaxing environment where real work can be accomplished. They leave the conversation with the mindset “You’re ok, I’m ok.” What’s your communication style? Passive communication often leaves us feeling unheard &
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4 Steps to Effective Networking

 Step 1. – Focus on the 1 you are talking to. Don’t look around the room or be distracted by your phone. Focus only on the 1 person in front of you. Step 2 – Follow the rule of 2. In an effort to make the conversation about them & not about you. Anytime they share something about themselves, ask 2 questions before you share anything about yourself.   Step 3 – Say their name 3 times. This will help you remember their name, so weave it into the conversation 3 times.   Step 4 – Do something 4 them. Find a way to connect them to someone, share an article or book they would enjoy – find a simple way to do something 4 them.
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