Speed Demon

Speed and immediacy are of the essence, these days. That is not a passing fad, but rather a fact of modern life that technologies and expectations intensify. You’re not going to be successful with cumbersome models and complex methodology. Streamline your approaches. Clients receive much more value from an 80% effective solution implemented now than a 95% effective solution in two weeks or, usually the case, two months.


Sorry, I Can’t See You, You’re Indistinct

Don’t slavishly copy. When you notice a lot of people doing the same thing, get off the train, it’s already old. Create new IP, new meaning. Don’t be derivative. This is why you have to continually “reinvent” yourself. The most vivid bad examples: All those people using 15-year-old photos on Facebook and elsewhere! A few whom I’ve met I couldn’t recognize! © Alan Weiss 2016


Opening Act

I drive a couple of miles at 7am down here at the Jersey Shore to get the newspapers at the supermarket. During my leisurely drive along the boardwalk and through the snoozing town, I see trucks delivering everything from bread to beer, people opening hardware stores and donut shops, street cleaners and parking meter change collectors. Everyone is out in their routine. People who are expected to open up freight doors are doing so, the police are riding shotgun for …


What We Have Here Is A Failure To Communicate

I had a problem with my Pitney Bowes postage meter at one point, and the repair guy said, “Yeah, this was tooled wrong. It’s nothing your doing or even this machine, the part was made wrong.” “No one realized?” “Oh, we told them right away in manufacturing, but they refused to listen to us.” In your clients, marketing, sales, manufacturing, R&D, and other operations often don’t listen to their own field people (or customers). There aren’t established avenues to do …


Structuring A Successful Hour Meeting (With An Economic Buyer)

First 10-15 minutes: Pleasantries, build a relationship, determine other person’s style, create credibility and trust. Offer some value. Typical question: “What prompted you to see me?” Second 10-15 minutes: Discuss issues of importance which may lend themselves to a project. Provide more value. Pivot the discussion when necessary to keep the discussion in the “boat channel” you design. Typical question: “I’m confident I can help you in these areas, how can we best work together?” Third 10-15 minutes: Segue the …


Those Stupid Things Remind Me of You

We all say stupid things. Some of us are lucky enough to have family and friends who straighten us out. You owe it to your clients to point out stupid things, not pretend they weren’t said or are actually legitimate. “You were a great investment for us, but we’re having a tough year so I don’t know if we can renew with you,” is a stupid thing. Do you sell your best performing stocks in a poor market? © Alan …


Publish but Don’t Perish

You know how “It’s not what happens to you, it’s what you do about it”? Well, a corollary: “It’s not that you have a book out, it’s what you do with it.” Stop dreaming that you’re in the book selling business or that you’ve just written War and Peace. Use the fact that a third-party publisher thought enough of your quality to invest in you, and use that to attract buyers and close business. A book is a marketing device. I’ve written …


Owning the Conversation

Stop trying to respond to buyers’ questions as if you’re seeking a good score on the SATs or taking an interview for grad school. Change the conversation toward the direction you need to close business. For example, once you explain what you can do for clients, and you’re sensibly asked, “How do you do that?” respond: “Instead of talking theoretically or about another environment, why don’t we talk about what I can do specifically for you? What are your greatest …


The HR Non-Revolution

This is from someone named Ben Whitter on Linkedin: “The never-ending debate about the future of Human Resources took another major twist as Airbnb, a company valued at $25.5 billion dollars based in the shared economy space, recently announced that they are redefining their HR function in terms of what it is and what it does with the appointment of a new Global Head of Employee Experience to oversee and connect everything to do with their ‘workplace as an experience’ vision, which …


Business Basics

Some things to bear in mind: • The next time you hear a human resources person ask for a result rather than a deliverable, check your blood alcohol level. • The average article posted on LinkedIn is titled something like this: “Six Reasons Why You Can’t Follow the Normal Six Reasons to Run Meetings.” • Culture consists of those beliefs which govern behavior. Culture will not change if the beliefs do not change. (Ergo, “lip service.”) • No ethical person …