Please Don’t Leave A Message At The “Beep”

Both Kensington and FileMaker put representatives on the phone within a 90-second wait to help me make adaptations for my new iMacPro. High tech, high touch. Apple  provides 30 minutes of live phone time when you purchase the iMac or the iPhone X. Every business is a relationship business, from Microsoft to Amazon, Boeing to Sears. Some do it well, many do it terribly. I trust Emirates Airlines, they always get the benefit of the doubt, but I wouldn’t walk …


Fog

When warm air moves over cool surfaces, fog can form. It’s happening here, on my property, as the considerable remainder of the snow is under 50° temperatures. In the fog, smart people turn on lights, they drive more slowly, the change their plans, they get assistance, or they’ll even simply stop for a while. Many people, in a career fog, simple keep going, recklessly, until they crash, often hurting others. The philosopher Santayana said that the definition of a fanatic …


Here’s My Material for Our Call in Five Minutes

I get a kick out of receiving some material an hour or less before a scheduled call and being asked to look it over, as though I’m sitting around with nothing to do! I guess it’s nice that people feel I have superpowers, and can instantly absorb a book outline, or consulting proposal, or 2018 strategy. Here’s a neat trick: You promise a buyer a proposal within 48 hours. You send it within 12 hours. You call to ensure it …


Listen to Me, Not Them

There is some kind of new trend on Linkedin, although it may just be plagiarism and copying, stipulating that asking “Why?” is the wrong approach to problem solving, Instead, we should be asking “What?” (One of the proponents is a psychologist, apparently, who positions herself as still another “best-selling” author.) The only way to remove a problem is to find its cause (not to find blame) which is done by asking “Why is this happening?” Otherwise, you’re just adapting to …


Some Numbers to Ponder

As of this morning, the average number of followers on Twitter is 208. The average number of friends on Facebook is 338. About 50% of all those on Linkedin have fewer than 500 connections. According to Jonah Berger’s research (the author of Invisible Influence and Contagious, who spoke at one of my events last year) word-of-mouth is by far still THE most important marketing dynamic, and only 7% of it is virtually viral. You read that correctly: All of the rest is personal …


What Are You Afraid Of?

I fall asleep when I read, “Commitment is important for leaders.” But I keep reading when I see, “The best leaders are highly tyrannical.” I’d suggest that you stop telling people things they already think they know in your videos, audios, and textual materials. Instead, provoke and incite. So what if someone takes issue with you or is enraged? I’ve operated with the metric that unless there are people every day outraged by me, unsubscribing, complaining, taking issue, swearing never …


Options

If you give someone a “take it or leave it” offer, your chances aren’t any better than 50/50. Some people will reject it just on the basis of feeling trapped. If you give someone options, you increase your chances dramatically. “Our room rate is $895 per night, no exceptions.” “Our room rate ranges from $495 to $2,400 per night, depending on the accommodation, frequent guest status, advance booking, and length of stay.” By the way, the higher your ultimate option, …



The Fallacy of the Second Meeting

In successful projects I’ve had among the Fortune 1000, I estimate that I was able to get approval for the buyer to receive my proposal by the end of the first meeting about 85% or more of the time, The other 15% required a second meeting. I can’t recall an instance of going to a third meeting for a successful project acceptance. When a true buyer puts you off, reschedules, or asks for more time, it’s tantamount to a “no.” …


Sniff

I caught what turned out to be one of those season-changing brief colds and could barely breathe. I went to the local CVS and visited the “consult” area. I told the pharmacist my problem, and he said, “Follow me,” going through that little half-door that seems de rigueur in all drug stores. He found the nasal spray down the aisle and said, “This will clear you up immediately.” I said, “For how long should I take it and when should I …