Have you ever thought about what would happen if you gave another 20% effort towards achieving your goal? Let me explain. Most people would say at the beginning of the New Year they have a goal they want to achieve. But, what is your plan? Are you even going to give it 100% effort? Do you really think by just telling others you want something, that it will magically happen? Well, most people do.
So, last year I tried something. What would happen when I changed my Fitbit daily goal for steps from 10,000 to 12,000, a 20% increase? Well, I can tell you without making any other changes I lost an additional 8 pounds. I then began to think, what if I began to apply the 20% rule to other parts of my life?
What if I practiced putting 20% more, what would that do for my golf game?
What if I focused 20% more on my Top 20 customers (usually 80% of your business comes from your top 20% of customers)?
What if I spent 20% more effort on my personal relationships?
And this one might hurt but, what if I spent 20% less time on social media???
Please note, this does not mean just spending 20% time, this means 20% focused on this one goal!
Some interesting facts…
People who exercised during their workday were 23 percent more productive on those days than they were when they didn’t exercise, says a recent study from the International Journal of Workplace Health Management.
A study in Neurobiology of Learning and Memory found that people learned vocabulary words 20 percent faster after intense exercise than after low-intensity activity.
At Google, the company allows 20 percent of an employee’s time to be spent to develop projects of their own interest.
For the upcoming year, I want you to think about something…don’t think about doing more with less, think about doing more with what you have…GIVE ME YOUR 20!
Many of us work in an office. Some of us have to work in vehicles. And there are some lucky folks that get to work in a gym! This article is for those of us that aren’t lucky enough to exercise for a living!
While working in an office, many of us find it challenging to squeeze a work out in. And if you are in sales, and driving from appointment to appointment, it seems all the more challenging to find time to exercise. Add to this long commutes, the need to rise early to avoid traffic, and arriving home late, too tired to exercise, what are you supposed to do?
Here are a few tips that I’ve found very helpful to squeeze some exercise in throughout the day.
1. Park your car as far away from the door as possible
This is one of the easiest ways that I’ve found to add exercise during the day. I used to try to find the closest parking spot to the door of the office I was visiting. Parking further away caused me to increase the number of steps I had to take to get to the door.
If you work in an office, you can use this to your advantage in multiple ways. Obviously, you can go to the door from your car in the parking lot. You can then go back to your car during your lunch break; maybe purposely keep a book or something in there to force you to go to the car. And of course, you will walk back to your car when you go home for the day.
If you don’t drive to work and use public transport, this is even easier for you. You can get off a few stops ahead of your usual stop in order to increase your steps. The same would go for you on your way back home.
2. Have stand up meetings
Stand up meetings are a great way to add exercise during the day. This causes everyone to literally think on their feet. It also takes away from the almost ‘license’ to check out during a meeting as everyone is standing. Meetings tend to go quicker when standing up as well. And if there are snacks at the meeting, they are more difficult to eat while taking notes during a stand up meeting.
3. Stand up during phone calls
This is an excellent way to add energy, enthusiasm, and life to your phone calls. Instead of sitting down and taking your calls, try standing up. Often times, the person on the other end can hear the energy and life in the call from your side. This may be challenging for those that have to be on the phone all day, but try switching from sitting to standing in between calls.
4. Choose face to face over emails
In many companies, email is getting to be the most common form of communication. People don’t seem to meet face to face unless it’s an in person meeting. I’ve seen and participated in long back and forth emails between just two people. This could have been resolved with either a phone call or a quick chat in person. If you and another person are in an office together, I would suggest simply walking over and asking them a question. Apart from getting a bit of exercise, you can easily clarify your situation instead of getting into a lengthy string of emails.
5. Quiet corner push ups
This may not be the easiest thing to do, but it is possible. Find a quiet corner in your office building and blast off a few push ups. If you can’t do push ups, find some other exercise- burpees, squats, etc. Sometimes, finding a quiet corner in itself could be an exercise! I’ve personally done this in some of the places I’ve worked. So I can say this is possible.
I hope that you found these tips helpful in squeezing in exercise during a busy day. Of course, as with any health and exercise regime, check with your medical professional before you start anything. And always use common sense.
What do you do to add exercise in your day? Please leave your thoughts in the comments section. If you feel that others could benefit from these tips, please share this post. You can also contact me at email@example.com
I used to travel quite a bit for work. During those trips, I always found it a challenge to stay healthy. But I get by with a little help with my friends. It was through friends that I realized and learned what I needed to do to stay healthy while traveling for work.
What I’ve learned, from myself as well as others, was interesting. People tend to take a vacation from being healthy when traveling for work. If they normally exercise and eat right at home, they tend to throw all of that out of the window when traveling for work.
Often times, people say it’s very challenging to stay healthy when traveling for work. “I have to eat out a lot.” “The hotel doesn’t have a gym.” “The meeting was really late.” “The customer wanted to meet over a couple of beers.” Yes, the challenges are real.
The challenges are real, but like I said, I got by with a little help from my friends. I have been lucky to have a few friends that understand health and wellness very well. They helped me understand the challenges that I faced because they faced them as well.
One of the biggest lessons that I learned was that you can have what you want if you make it a priority. So, if you want health, you will make that a priority. You can have what you want if you really want it.
For example, if the hotel doesn’t have a gym, you can work out in your room or even just take a walk outside. If you have to eat out, you learn what are the right things to order from the menu. If the meeting was to be over a few beers, you learn what beers or drinks to order. If the meeting is expected to run really late, you learn how to close the meeting on time.
The late meeting example still resonates with me. I had a friend in a previous company that I worked for that did the same job as I did. She read to her children every night. Even when she traveled for work. She scheduled her meetings to close at the right time so that she could call her children, even in the parking lot, and read to them. You can have what you want if you really want it.
At dMann Training, we plan to have a series of posts to help you stay healthy while traveling for work or even at home. I hope this post gave you a chance to think about it. And maybe even some tips.
So what do you do to stay healthy while you travel for work? What do you do to stay healthy at home? Leave your thoughts in the comments. You can also contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
What’s your audience’s frequency? What’s the station that your customer is listening to? What channel should you set your dial to? I would bet and say it’s WIIFM.
When presenting to an audience you need to understand why they would want to listen to you you. The question residing at the backs of their minds is “What’s In It for Me?” or “WIIFM”. If you don’t give your audience a WIIFM, then they will quickly lose interest. What this means is, you need to tailor your presentation to your audience- whether it’s a sales pitch or if you are presenting a facts or a proposal.
So tune into your audience’s frequency. Is there a WIIFM? Understand what your audience really wants before you develop your pitch or presentation. This will give you a better chance of having your audience listen to you. Your and audience and you will be on the same wavelength.
Gone are the days when you can simply stand on a soap box and give a presentation and expect a crowd to listen to you. Gone are the days when you can show up at a customer’s door step with a fabulous new product and expect them to buy it. If there is no WIIFM, then there is no reason you should have an audience or a customer would buy.
So how do you tune into WIIFM? You need to know your audience. You need to understand their needs. You need to understand what they want to hear.
When developing your presentation, understand what your audience needs to hear. Are they the kind that likes to see graphs? Then add graphs to your presentation. Are they the type that likes to hear stories about how your product helped others? Then tell stories. It is very important that you understand your audience or customer before you give them a pitch or presentation.
But simply graphs or stories to your presentation is not enough. You have to truly understand your audience. You must give them a reason to listen to you. You must help them realize that you kept them in mind when you developed your presentation. You must let them know what’s in it for them. You’ve got to tune into WIIFM.
Thanks for reading this piece. Have you used WIIFM in your work or presentations? How have you used it? Please leave your thoughts in the comments. If you liked what you’ve read, please don’t hesitate to share this with others. You can also contact me at email@example.com
Several years ago, I was introduced to something that was intended to help a person with job interviews. It is called the STAR technique. I later learned that it can applied as a communication tool in many ways.
In case you aren’t familiar with it, STAR is an acronym for Situation, Task, Action, and Result. I was told that this is a good way to explain how you approached a project discussion during an interview. But I quickly learned that this same technique is a great way to communicate your ideas to others.
Let’s break it down…
When you have an idea, sale, or a project that you want to relay to another person, it’s not enough to impose your thoughts on them and expect something. By using the STAR technique, you lay the foundation by explaining the situation at hand. Whether it’s your idea, a sale’s pitch, or a project you are leading, by explaining the situation that needs to be addressed, you much likelier to be understood.
Once you have laid the foundation by communicating the situation, you can now discuss what needs to be done, i.e. the tasks at hand. This will help communicate what roles and jobs may need to be developed. By discussing the tasks, it will be easier to communicate what actions and results are expected. For example, if it is a sale, this helps explain who would benefit from the product or service. If it is a project you are leading, this will help communicate the various roles that need to be filled.
This communication piece will help you describe the duties needed to be completed in order to be successful. In a sales situation, this could be the fact that the customer needs to sign on the dotted line. In a project situation, this would be the actions each member would be taking on in their prescribed roles. If you are pitching an idea to a group, this will tell them what actions need to be completed in respect to the tasks at hand.
This is the bit of communication that people look forward to. If you are selling something, they want to know what’ in it for them if they made a purchase. If you are leading a project, then what is the end goal? If you are pitching an idea, then it simply makes sense to explain the end goal of the project.
I hope you found this twist on STAR intriguing, and even helpful. Have you used the STAR technique before? What are some ways you have used it? Please leave your thoughts in the comments. You can also contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org . If you’ve liked what you’ve read, please share it with others. Now go other there and be a STAR!
While this isn’t a message dealing with politics, how do you think the presumptive Republican nominee views himself? Do you believe there is a connection between his self perception verses how he performs? Even when Trump didn’t come out on top in polling it never affected his view of himself.In fact, he was more inclined to adopt the idea that his constituency just didn’t get it.There is a saying that goes: whether a man thinks he can or cannot, he is right.
You also may have heard people say, “it’s all mental”. Perhaps there is some credence to that phrase. To share some examples, I have friends who are avid golfers and they would say the game is played mentally as well as physically.
I remember distinctly playing college football and when I would miss an assignment or tackle the coaches yelling “forget about it” and play the next play!! Somehow the coaches knew that if I allowed a temporary poor performance to affect my self perception then the rest of my game could spiral downward.
The same is applicable in business and sales. Maybe you had a bad deal or interaction. How do you respond? I’ll contrast the two.
The person with a poor self perception even on a good day is prone to think of his good performance as luck. This person does NOT expect to perform well.
When this person experiences what they perceive to be a bad sales call or loses a deal they are more apt to play the victim. They will allow that one event to define them and it will eventually affect future outcomes.
A person with a great self perception always EXPECTS to perform well; they are likely to look at the “failure” as an simply an event, challenge or even an opportunity to learn and improve. This person does not internalize this event and allow it to adversely impact the rest of the day or week.
Ask yourself, how would I approach a sales call if money or whatever you valued was no object? I would venture to say that there is nothing the prospect could say that would take you off your game. Your demeanor would most likely be relaxed and if they turned down your product you probably wouldn’t internalize it as a failure.
So, how will you respond to challenges, off days, and adversity? Make the choice to preserve your self perception knowing that the sales game is also played mentally. Leave your thoughts in the comments. You can also contact Chaz at email@example.com
It’s my personal belief that no matter who you are in any company, you are a representative in that company. Being a representative also means providing customer service. That also means handling customer complaints.
Years ago, I used to train customer service representatives in some soft skills. There I learned of a technique taught by one of the other trainers. This was the HEAT technique for handling customer complaints. This technique has remained with me all these years.
HEAT is an acronym that helps us understand the customer’s needs and handle the complaint. It lists, in order, what to do. Let’s dive into HEAT.
H- Hear Out the Customer
This simply means that you give an ear to the customer’s issue. Sometimes just doing this will diffuse the situation. Hearing the customer out, makes a tremendous difference.
By doing this, you are letting the customer know that you care. You are trying to make an attempt to understand the situation. This often goes a long way with customers
A- Accept Responsibility
Accepting responsibility means not passing the buck. It means not saying that it’s not your job and pushing the complaint aside. It means you are willing to apologize on behalf of the company you work for and you will do whatever is in your power to improve the situation.
T- Take Action
Take action. I don’t really have to elaborate on this. Do something to change the situation within your power. Connect the customer with the right person. Send out an email. Let the customer know that you have done everything you could have done to make the situation better. I personally think this helps lead to a sense of calm.
Learning these steps helped me better understand what the customer needed and wanted in many situations. These steps helped me also realize there are simply the things I would like also as a customer if I had a complaint. These steps helped me also become a better customer.
Have you ever been in a situation where you had to deal with a customer complaint? What steps did you take to diffuse the situation? Have you ever used the HEAT technique? Please leave your thoughts in the comments section. I would love to hear from you. You can also contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Like him or not, Donald Trump is someone to watch. Entertaining could be one word to describe him. In fact, these days, when Trump talks, people listen- no matter what he says.
There are certain things that Trump does that ensures people listen to him. We can learn a thing or two from the talks and speeches he provides. Here are a few things that you can learn from Trump to add to your next talk or presentation. It just might make you more entertaining and cause people to listen to you.
1. Have a signature look
People make fun of Trump’s hair, but he owns it. And no matter where he goes, he is recognizable. But don’t forget his solid colored ties and power suits. He has a signature look.
A signature look can help you feel more confident when you are speaking in front of people. It gives you one less thing to worry about. It can also help you feel good about yourself. I had a friend that used to wear Superman cufflinks and Superman socks when he had important presentations to give.
2. Be Dramatic
Trump uses a lot of hand motions, gestures, and facial expressions when he talks. In other words, he uses a lot of drama. He’s not dull. He’s in fact an actor of sorts.
By using motion, facial expressions, and gestures, you give your audience another dimension to your presentation. Adding another dimension to your presentation keeps it from getting dull. Otherwise you will simply be the flesh and bones version of a boring slide deck.
3. Make a lot of noise
When Trump speaks, he makes a lot of noise. It causes people to wake up. People wait to hear what he will say next. It keeps them on the edge of their seat.
When presenting to an audience, use inflections in your voice. Changes in your tone keeps the presentation interesting. This reduces the chance of your presentation being a chance to look at one’s smart phone.
4. Be entertaining
Trump is entertaining because he gives the audience what they want to hear. If you like him, you want to hear what he says to cheer him on. If you don’t like him, you want to hear what he says so that you can complain about whatever he’s talking about. Either way, Trump gives people what they want to hear.
When presenting, give your audience what they want to hear. Don’t get bogged down in the details that you think is important. Talk about what the audience finds important. They will find this entertaining as opposed to being forced to attend a meeting as usual.
5. Be bold
Trump is bold. He knows what he says may make others uncomfortable, but he says it anyway. And he is willing to stand behind what he says.
When presenting in front of others, don’t worry about what others are going to say. Be bold. As I said earlier, don’t worry about the details. If you are questioned on what you present, stand behind it. You can provide details if asked, or even after a presentation.
These 5 tips will help you Trump your next presentation. Once you use these tips, let me and others know how it goes. Do you have any tips to Trump a presentation? If so, let others know. Please leave your thoughts in the comments section. I would love to hear from you. You can also contact me at email@example.com
What is the sweetest sound in business? Many people feel that it is the clink of cold hard cash in a money box. I would beg to disagree.
When I began my training as a physician, I was taught that the sweetest sound to any human being’s ears is the sound of their name. I learned the importance of treating a patient as an individual and not as a ‘case’. I learned to ask for the patient’s name, not just for the sake of identification, but more for the reason of providing a personal touch to someone that is seeking my help. I sadly did not think of transferring this valuable lesson to other aspects of my life until many years later.
One of my mentors reminded me of this when I did a ride along early on in my sales career. I remember walking into a hospital with him and going a nurse’s station and approaching the nurse that was there. My mentor immediately asked the nurse a question. However, with great finesse, he prefixed the question with the nurse’s name.
The nurse smiled and gave my mentor the answer we needed and we went on our way. I asked him how he knew the nurse. He told me he had never met her before. I then asked him how he knew her name. His answer made me remember my training as a physician.
He said, “She had a name tag on.” “Why wouldn’t you use her name if you can see her name tag?” I immediately remembered ‘The Sweetest Sound’.
We often use, Ms, Mr, Sir, Ma’am as signs of respect. But often, this appears impersonal. The use of a person’s name brings your conversation to another level.
Another mentor of mine showed me this in action in another scenario. This time we were the customers. We sat down for a lunch meeting and he asked the server to repeat his name. The server looked surprised. My mentor then explained to him, “I’d rather call you by your name than call you ‘Hey’ or ‘Excuse me’.” This helped me better understand the impact of ‘The Sweetest Sound’.
Now I make a strong attempt in using people’s names when interacting with them. I often get told that I am great with names. But that is truly not the case. The truth is I make a strong attempt in learning and using a person’s name. I make a strong attempt at creating ‘The Sweetest Sound’ in business.
What is ‘The Sweetest Sound’ to you? Have you used ‘The Sweetest Sound’, i.e. a person’s name, in a situation outside your immediate circle to create a more personal situation for your business? Has it ever backfired on you? Please leave your thoughts in the comments section. I would love to hear from you. You can also contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Why be perfect in your job? It will get you ahead, right? Wrong!
It took me a while to understand this. And when I say a while, I mean years. I’ll explain why…
When I began my career in corporate America, I wanted to excel and prove myself. I took on many projects- probably more than I should have. I did this to look good in eyes of my bosses and peers.
The problem with this however, was at that time I equated being busy with being successful. I was always working on something and took my work home. I felt that being so busy was a sign of being successful- that I was somebody.
As I began to look more closely into my skill sets I began to question my busyness. Was I really that successful? Was I really getting things done?
With self analysis and self appraisals, I began to better understand myself. I also had great mentors that helped me understand my strengths and weaknesses. It was through this I began to better understand why I was so busy.
I learned that I was busy not because of the number of projects I took on, but what I was doing in those projects. I was looking for perfection. Trying to attain perfection caused me to lose sight of the big picture and get bogged down in the details.
On further analysis of the pursuit of perfection, I realized that this was actually a form of procrastination. I was using to perfectionism to mask any insecurities that I may have had regarding the projects I was working on… One more tweak and this will look better… One more revision… One more adjustment… One more whatever…
By learning this about myself, I began to manage my time more efficiently. I was able to get projects completed on time without having to add so much extra time before and after work hours. I learned how to do things right without overwhelming myself. And possibly the most important lesson here was that there was a difference between excellence and perfection.
I had a friend that worked for another large multi-national company. He showed me something that was often told to them at that company- ‘Done is better than perfect.’ I loved that. I found it very profound.
Since then I’ve learned the difference between perfection and procrastination. Good enough is not good enough, but trying to attain perfection is a never ending battle. So I learned to do things right within the allotted time period- without trying to be perfect. I learned to pursue excellence and not perfection. I also learned not to equate being busy with being successful. This helped me improve my productivity and reduce my procrastination.
So, I encourage you analyze your work habits. Are you unnecessarily busy? Are you using something like perfection to procrastinate? Have you ever discovered any habits you may have that are actually forms of procrastination? Please leave your thoughts in the comments section. I would love to hear from you. You can also contact me at email@example.com