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What most will not do, you must do

Never take it literally when a kind person says: “no need to thank me, it is my job” or “It was my pleasure”.

If a person does something thoughtful or something that helps you, acknowledge them.

They should hear your gratitude from time to time.

This sentiment of letting your What being known should include all of the people in your life.

Your spouse, boss, co-worker, clients, neighbor, and anyone making a positive impact on your life.

Everyone needs to hear out loud that you appreciate his or her efforts.

Especially when that effort is on your behalf.

Even if their effort is a socially accepted duty as a participating member of your family.

Even if it is your co- workers job to support you.

You should still go out of your way and expel energy to embody an attitude of gratitude.

Why?

  1. Gratitude is an attractive quality to possess. 

Remember this: Even the people who like you like to like you. We are social creatures but our hard wiring is to look out for number one and that sentiment within us is thousands of years old. Our behavior has changed over the years but our nature has hardly changed at all. We are vulnerable to the environment around us and so our number one priority is self preservation. It is inherited through our physical structure and is as pre-existing as our DNA. It is because of our self conscious nature that we make every decision. That being said, of course we selfishly like people who display humility.

  2.  Gratitude and trust walk hand in hand.

To be successful, you will need to be trustworthy. Showing gratitude upfront before earning trust through any other action is the best way to barter for a chance to prove yourself. For example; all any of us really need is an opportunity. If you are given an opportunity to prove yourself and you come through on your word, the odds are already disproportionately in your favor to have a long term paid opportunity. You may have to work for free on the first project. You may have to struggle to make it for a while. However, if you can stand it, you will be pleased with the results.

What most will not do, you must do.

Math is almost always the answer to most emotional intelligence questions. It is simple. If 100 people say they are going to do even the most basic task, for free, for someone else’s benefit, 10 people may actually do it (note* it doesn’t matter if 75 people actually do it…stay with me). If 30 people say they will do a relatively hard task, for free, for someone else’s benefit maybe three will do it and only one will impress you. What does this mean? It means the harder something is to do the fewer people there will be willing to do the work and even fewer for the immediate monetary value of zero dollars. This means the math is dramatically in your favor to be the one. All you have to do is to decide you are the one and to put immediate payoff completely out of you mind. It will take emotional grit to overcome your own narrative about what you are worth. Your best work is priceless if you are the best however first you need other people to know it. The only way for people to truly understand something is to go through it. People have to experience you keeping your word before they will believe you.

The math says so.

The hard part of most things is your mindset. Go in grateful for an opportunity. Blow the socks off the person who paid you upfront in the form of trust and unless something has changed about human nature since yesterday-you will get another opportunity. You must then take that opportunity both quickly and enthusiastically and do what is required of you without asking what the payoff will be. Just do it.

You are living through the greatest era in American history to start something on your own terms, pay nothing other than attention and time in order to get noticed and be in the black in the macro of your business by just understanding doing work for free upfront is the cheapest investment opportunity with the most unbelievably high returns ever. Word travels faster than ever-It’s called the internet. The internet Is word of mouth. The internet can provide the exact same context you need to begin a relationship as taking a client out for a steak dinner was in the 80’s and 90’s.

It may be the responsibility of many people to support us over the course of our lives but how many individuals really come through for us?

Who are the people who have been there for you consistently and come to your rescue without complaining or getting tired of supporting you.

How many people do you have?

Most of us do not have many people like this in our lives.

So acknowledge those who put up and show up for you.

Become the person that puts up and shows up.

Show effort and respect.

Acknowledge them because they are a rarity and important to you.

People willing to go out and show they can be trustworthy before expecting anything in return are rare.

Effort cannot sustain itself without positive reinforcement.

Not forever…

Keep giving them reasons why they should continue to trust you and the money will come.

It does not cost anything to give gratitude and try.

“For whoever has will be given more, and they will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them.”-Matthew 25:29

#strikeamatch

Unspoken expectations

Consumers have high expectations.

High expectations left unfufilled sound like the quiet space between the lines of a bad review.

Unspoken but present, the echo of disappointment is reflected in negative comments because the comments are only negative because the consumer anticipated a positive experience.

Experiences that fall short of promised expectations are why customer satisfaction ratings consistently show up in product/service reviews.

Almost every unsatisfied review you will encounter has the language of: “I thought this would be better” or “we expected a different experience” and “we are so disappointed”.

If the products and services we are offered were required to include a disclosure of a possible negative experience then it would be harder for people to say they were misled and are now disappointed.

If all service people were honest then they would all say: “it is possible that something goes wrong with your experience, we simply can not guarantee anything other than doing our best”.

But the reality-most services and products do not warn us of our potential disappointment.

They may promise a refund, and we will take it, but we wanted what we were promised more than a refund.

We live in a society where being that honest about setting expectations feels risky.

The risk we anticipate by being totally honest is that no one will give us a chance.

We assume the consumer will think that if we are willing to make an unintentional mistake, we will also not work hard to make the customer experience as perfect as possible.

We have lived in a world of disappointing broken promises and yet we still seek these “promises” from service providers to feel they qualify for our business.

It is the culture we live in to look for a good promise from people, and then not be shocked when that promise breaks.

If we get a promise from people it means if something goes wrong we have the right to complain.

We also know that if someone takes away our entitlement to complain then no one will take ownership of our bad experience.

But what does this system really solve?

Would it not be better to know what to expect as the consumer than to always have to take bad odds on yet another promise?

We know that as humans we like control so why do we not allow ourselves to have more control over our experience by working with people who are willing to be honest with us up front?

The answer: almost no service providers and products are completely honest up front.

The broken promise strategy hasn’t put them out of business yet so why change the strategy?

Sure they have lost some customers but the business is open so why change?

Here are some reasons to be the one who decides to be totally honest with setting expectations:

#1. The world has changed. The consumer is smarter and has access to multiple choices for whom they work with and buy from.   The only reason to continue doing anything according to the past status quo is if nothing has changed about the circumstances surrounding what has worked in the past. Consumers have options but cannot find the honest clear option to pick because everyone is afraid to be honest with them. If you are in afraid you will immediately be scarce which is a good thing.

#2. It is now more risky than ever to break your word.  If you disappoint people today they will do more than tell their neighbors… They will tell thousands of people online.  Bad news traveled pretty fast in the past, now it is traveling at the speed of fiber optic cable…

#3. It will make your life easier to set expectations because you will get to be human.  No one is perfect. Perfection is not a constantly repeatable trait for the human condition.  If you want to relate to people best… be a person! Just chose to be an honest person.

Set expectations upfront. Advise people what they should expect, what you intend to deliver, and that if you deliver less then you will do your best to make it right.

So many times service providers make excuses and isolate the consumer by saying: “my other clients like my service, not sure why you don’t.” Even if you feel that way how does this help your brand if you are telling a client they don’t fit in with your “everyone else” group? ? Remember, “one” can be everyone quickly thanks to the Internet.

There is no rule against being the change that you know the world around you will support and appreciate.

Someone needed to invent the automobile.

For almost 100 years people fiddled with the idea of this need until the invention gained real momentum.

The world needed cars to become more efficient as out societies evolved.

Similarly, consumers need someone to set honest expectations up front to attract and increase their customer satisfaction.

Consumers are looking for honest.

Please do not hide the broken promise system.

We do not have 100 years for you to decide to tell us what we can actually expect from you.

We need you now.

I am Resilience

I am a virtue.

I am the main reason when you get knocked down…you will not stay down.

I am elastic.

I have the capacity to help you recover from difficulties.

And once I recover you…I come back even stronger to support you.

I will not let failure overcome you.

I regulate your emotions.

I exist only to provide you with clarity.

I will not let you quit.

Even after misfortune, I will show you how to soldier on.

I can change the course of your future.

I can show you how to adapt to abrupt changes.

Adversity is something I expect from life, and I am unafraid of the future.

I accept that fear is a part of life, and will help you face your fears.

I will help you build skill to get you through hardships.

Once you make me a part of your life I will not leave you.

I will take the pain out of loss and turn it into motivation.

I am your most supportive habit.

My goal is for you to persevere.

I will be your hero if you will be a champion of my cause.

My cause is you.

I am resilience.

The outside world is full of rejection…the better you are at brushing it off the better off you will be.

Rejection is not real. 

Rejection is a story of one person not quite ready to catch what another person is pitching.

Rejection is not an excuse to quit.

Onward…

Skull talk

Skull talk is important. 

You are the voice you hear most often.

On your road to being great at communication we can’t forget about how we talk to ourselves.

How should you talk to yourself?

Try this:

Dear Self,

You don’t have to worry about someone “taking our place”.
As long as we keep welcoming challenges and looking for problems to solve we almost can’t go wrong.
There are not many other people willing to do that.

You are a hero for always trying to improve yourself.  

Don’t compare us to other people.
Compare us to our-self and measure our success on lessons learned and our perspective gained since last year.

I know money is the most popular measurement to track improvement, but it shouldn’t be.

In fact, take it easy on us from time to time!
No one is perfect.
We can’t control everything all the time.
Let’s stick to us being the change we want to see in our field of work and in our world.
We can control what we focus on.

I know our best is good enough.
I think the trick is sticking to what we are best at and surrounding ourselves with people who can help us with the rest.

Stop talking about how “we are not getting any younger”
Who is?!
I know, I know… A younger body would be nice.
But I wouldn’t trade our wisdom for anything.
What we lack in stamina we can make up for in making smart moves.

Let’s follow trends to keep up with what our customers want.
I am okay with that.
But please don’t forget to learn from those who have proved a strategy that works in the year we are living in.

I am aware we have responsibilities.
Just don’t forget us in the mix.
I am you.

I know we haven’t been the best of friends in the past.
Let’s let those days be finished.
Together I get the feeling we can get back up from anything.

#onyou #strikeamatch #burnyourships

The new rules of competition

The rules of competition fade when the competition gets personal.
Competition yields the best results when people compete to deliver a fair deal to the consumer.
A win-win-win.
This is true because ultimately the consumer makes the rules so long as they have options when choosing products and services.

The goal should always be to create a win-win-win situation for you, your client, and the other people involved.
Showing the customer a clear win-win scenario by being your partner will give you the best odds for being picked.
With that in mind, you must constantly gauge what is going on in a situation to determine what tactics should be implemented to ensure everyone involved wins.
You should always ask yourself: what does the client need and how can I give them what they need upfront. 


The truth about abundance:
The fewer the resources, the more cooperation you want to display.
The more abundant the resources, the more competitive you may be able to be. (Depending on what side you are on)
In most situations, both cooperation and competitive negotiating will yield the best results.

Big Hack: when things get personal – get generous.

Look out for these warning signs:

  1. Perceived as a spiteful jab rather than a fair fight for “the win-win”.
  2. When a competition begins to feel like a fight for a win-lose…
  3. You sense you are engaging in a competition for who has the biggest ego.                          Pride.
    Me… Not you.
    It is mine… You can not have it.
    I don’t care… It is the principal.
    Me. Me. Me…

    Cooperation is a fundamental component to healthy and productive competition.
    When pride enters the situation you can bet that logical reasoning and any shot of a win-win-win situation have been eliminated as a potential outcome. 

Here is the answer to keeping competition healthy:

Listen to each other. Get empathetic and generous. Prove you have listened by repeating what you heard and how YOU interpreted what you heard.
Use the word “cooperate”.
Say that you want to cooperate with the other person.

If you can’t cooperate, it is appropriate to ask yourself why.

And the why is usually a lopsided deal where someone does not receive fairness.
Then say you want a win-win result. 

The consumer gravitates towards people who they feel they can trust. 

We are living in the age of the internet where transparency makes a faulty moral base easy to detect.

Focus on giving more than you expect to receive.

Connect people to the fairest outcome.

Connect with people by meeting their perspectives with an open mind and by showing them you acknowledge their opinion.

There is no faking empathy. The strong silent type is getting crushed by the professionals who are willing to do the emotional labor of saying “talk to me I want to hear you.”

The greatest competitors are master cooperators.

Humble thy self.

#strikeamatch #onyou #empathy

Compose yourself

Aggression and panic will never be a match for subtle confidence.

Panic’s weakness is that it is telling.

On the polar opposite of the emotional wheel, you will find composure.

The silent poise and subtle confidence of the composed person are magnetic qualities.

composure leaves room for good interpretation because there is nothing we can see visibly overpowering a poised person.

The observer is left with no choice but to wonder…

“What is this person thinking?”

“Why are they so nonreactive?”

The mysterious nature of composure can be authoritative and yet paradoxically calm at the same time.

When the rest of the world overreacts, the poised individual waits and then responds.

They may not respond right away but when they do it is more likely the better way.

Calm and considerate people good to have around.

These are people we would not mind following.

(hint: show me your friends and I can show you your future.)

Being poised is easier if you have a good understanding of what is going on around you and why it is going on.

Recognition of opportunities and threats requires a state of mind that is at rest and not vulnerable to raw emotion.

The poised person thinks of the possible outcomes several decisions could bring.

Their reactions are what is controlled about them.

If you are in the service business and selling something of high value (like homes) your clients may feel they are at the mercy of a lot of economic factors outside of their control.

Factors like interest rates, supply and demand can panic people quickly.

You will have a hard time comforting these people if the same factors send you into the same panic.

It is good to remind yourself:

  1. You are always in control of presenting information.
  2. You are the sounding board and the guide but not responsible for any final decision.
  3. No matter what happens the answer is action. Keep moving. Sometimes things will not end in your favor but if you keep moving other opportunities will come.

Calm well thought out actions happen as a result of making well-informed decisions and not by waiting around for some other figurative “what if” shoe to drop.

#strikematch #onyou

The talking body

Microbody language.

People can look at the smallest shift in the way your body moves and in microseconds get an impression of you.

That is our human ability to draw conclusions and judge quickly based on previous situations we have been in. When it comes to deciphering body language it helps to think about what a “normal” response/approach would typically look like.

But what about when body language is missing from a conversation?

For example: If a person is claiming they care but their body language is totally relaxed, it sends us mixed messages.

Understated body language can make a person look timid or unsure of their cause.

Most of the time understated body language is our attempt at not looking nervous, but for the observer, our lax posture can feel like we do not care.

93% of your agenda is conveyed by your body.

Solution: practice moving.

Not because we are practicing to trick people but because we are wanting to be sure they know we care as much as we actually do care.

When your goal is to convince someone- make sure you look convincing.

You can always tell a liar who isn’t sold on their own advice because it sounds like they are trying to convince themselves.

When you are convinced of your cause you speak from your heart.

Simply saying the words you care will not be felt as sincere if your hands are in your pockets.

93% of the message “I care” by a person with their hands in their pockets is actually “I don’t care”…leaving the words “I care” with little or no meaning to the person hearing them.

Speaking from the heart when you are convincing someone is ten times more sincere when you let yourself gesture.

Be authentic by being the whole package.

You are the whole package to someone when the things you say match your body language because it conveys unity in what you say is truly what you mean to say.

Be present in the moment mind and body, committed to your job.

So what does that look like?

Here is the scenario: You want to tell your client that you understand how they feel and that you are the one to keep this deal together and ultimately bring them what they want. In doing this you want to reassure them they hired the right person in hiring you.

This means keeping your torso open, shoulders back, and when making hand gestures, you are making sure the movement originates from the center of your chest.

Keeping your arms folded says: I am uncomfortable.

Keep your forearms raised, hanging arms do not show feeling.

Also, every time you make a gesture look at a person’s eyes.

It is alright if a person looks away as you make eye contact with them, do not take that as a sign you have done something wrong.

If a person looks away after you make eye contact it is because they were not prepared for your sincerity.

If they do look away nervously then you can make them feel relaxed again by only holding eye contact (3 seconds or more) when you make the chest connecting hand movements.

There is a fine line between asserting sincerity and making someone uncomfortable.

Look for the cues.

Stay aware of how the other person is reacting to you.

Sometimes it is the smallest adjustments in our strategy that makes the biggest difference.

Ask someone close to you to tell you what your signature body movements are.

I guarantee they have noticed.