The Power of a Persistent Challenger in Sales

Posted by on Dec 17, 2013 in Written Blog | 0 comments

How long would you call on a prospect until you got a sale? How many no’s will you tolerate before you give up?  How persistent are you in the face of adversity? Last week I speaking to the amazing sales team at Cars.com. In my pre-event interviews I spoke to John Scalzitti who told me about one of their Legends Jeff Coulter. Cars.com is a digital media company that brings an audience of car buyers to auto dealers. The dealers have in the past been used to paying for traditional advertising, primarily TV and print. In the early days of Cars.com it was a much more difficult sale than today. It is well known that car buyers do much more research on the internet today before they go the the dealership. Often that research is done on their smart phone…at the dealership…in front of the sales person!

Jeff had to challenge the dealers paradigm of how they viewed the car buying process. He had to win the battle and teach them a new way of thinking and buying their advertising to drive the car buying public to their dealerships. Jeff learned how to keep charging through rejection. He kept coming back with an assertive attitude and the right data and insight to change the way the dealers looked at their advertising.

Jeff used to say that deal took my 5 years and 10 minutes. Five years of sales calls and planning and 10 minutes to do the paperwork.

Can you relate to that? How persistent are you? Do not focus on the price/investment but instead on the value you bring to the customer. Challenge the way they currently view what you are offering! It may not take you five years but if you have a compelling story, create urgency and keep charging through rejection and you will be more successful.

persistence

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Talent is Overrated

Posted by on Dec 6, 2013 in Blog, Video Series | 0 comments

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Anti-Branding Success Story

Posted by on Dec 4, 2013 in Blog, Written Blog | 0 comments

Golf Magazine just named Phil Mickelson Player of the Year. His brand has become “The Peoples Champion” and I belive that it was not by accident. Like Arnie (Palmer) and his Army from the 60’s, Phil has created a base of Raving Fans. Announcer Gary McCord said he said he was going to be everything Tiger Woods was not. That is an interesting branding philosophy. Who is your biggest competitor? What are they not?

phil

For Phil it was basics like being friendly with the galleries, taking extra amounts of time to sign 100’s of autographs and bring his family with him often. With Tiger’s transgressions it was easy to position against him with his long marriage to Amy and his three adorable kids. Seeing Tiger now with one of his kids at a tourney actually seems kind of strange to me.

Early in Phil’s career he was said to be kind of aloof and did not embrace the fans. He made a conscious decision to spend the time with fans because he knows that few moments of interaction can lock them in forever as being a supporter.

I have also made that decision in my career to be different. Almost all speakers use PowerPoint. I never have. Most speakers stay on stage. I get out and engage the audience. Almost no speakers create a customized handout for every event. I do every time regardless of how many are in the audience. My style is more like a interactive workshop not a “traditional one way keynote”. It makes for a more enjoyable sticky experience for the audience.

Research your competition and find out what you can do differently that will make a difference.

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You probably knew that sitting too much is bad…just not THIS bad.

Posted by on Nov 18, 2013 in Blog, Video Series | 1 comment

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Your Work is Never Done

Posted by on Nov 7, 2013 in Blog, Video Series | 0 comments

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10,000 Push Ups – are you crazy!

Posted by on Oct 27, 2013 in Blog, Written Blog | 1 comment

puash upWow that sounds like a big number. If you can do 10000 push ups every year I bet it would help you stay in great shape, build muscle, stay strong, strengthen bones and make you look better for sure in a swimsuit. If you break it down to a DAILY discipline 10,000/365 rounds out to only 28 a day. A streak starts with just one decision! For it to be a streak you also have to TRACK it.

I have been tracking my workouts for over 20 years and saved each of these sheets – go to the Document Library on my site to print out the Get Switched On Energy Schedule,  place on the mirror in your bathroom and simply fill in the boxes from 1 – 31 for each day of the month you get your 30 minutes of aerobic movement getting your heart rate up and ideally getting a sweat. You can add a “red dot” each day you add your minimum of 28 push ups too.

I am using technology on my Samsung Galaxy S3 smart phone. I downloaded a Push Ups – Your Personal Fitness Trainer app. There are MANY of them out there for Apple or Android. This is cool because you place it down below your face and touch your nose to it to count your push ups. It makes you go DEEP!

What would having the discipline of doing 10,000 push ups a year do for you? What would it do for your family to see your have that “streak” alive in your life? Get started now and see your body transform. It will not have over night BUT you will see results in as little as two weeks. Not a bad idea to add at least 28 exercises a day to build your core too!

This app also is making me do more. I set the alarm for the same time each day to remind me. Doing 54 a day right now -almost 20,000 a year. I made a decision to do a minimum of 28 a day for ever! You can too.

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Don’t Look Back

Posted by on Oct 24, 2013 in Blog, Video Series | 0 comments

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What is Good Customer Service?

Posted by on Oct 9, 2013 in Blog, Video Series | 0 comments

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How do you do things at your company?

Posted by on Sep 26, 2013 in Written Blog | 0 comments

I was recently asked to speak to the team at Babcox Media. Bill Babcox is the third generation leader of this 93 year old print/online media company that targets the Tire/Fleet/Autocare markets. In my preparation for the event they sent me a document I have never (and I have done over 940 events) been given.

The Way We Do Things Around Here – clearly lays out they way they do things at the company – both behavior and accepted best practices. It reminds the long term employees to keep the bar high and not get away from what got them there. It also quickly indoctrinates new team members of what is expected of them – no guesses – no excuses! This is really helpful for the “Millennials/Gen Y” whose work habits have really been called in to question recently.

Putting this document together should be easier if you have a small company like Babcox who has about 80 employees. It can certainly work for a much larger organization too. Have a meeting and share the concept of what you want to put together and why. You can use what Babcox did as an example to follow.

I love #22. Look sharp, be sharp. When in doubt, err on the side of over-dressing. That is a simple way to state your dress code policy.!

Putting it together will be a process and it will be worth it. The document will evolve as you discover more best practices. You must make it your own to fit your culture and business model. Create it, communicate it and make sure everyone on the team understands and hold each other accountability. Let me know what you come up with.

Babcox Media Akron, OH

Babcox Media Akron, OH

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Overcoming the Curse of Competence

Posted by on Sep 25, 2013 in Blog, Video Series | 0 comments

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How to Use Social Media for Small Business – Power of Social Proof

Posted by on Sep 12, 2013 in Blog, Video Series | 0 comments

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Don’t be a Seagull -Video

Posted by on Sep 3, 2013 in Blog, Video Series | 0 comments

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Customer Service Essentials

Posted by on Aug 15, 2013 in Blog, Video Series | 0 comments

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How fast do you walk?

Posted by on Aug 9, 2013 in Written Blog | 0 comments

This may not surprise you but if you typically walk slowly and “lollygag” it will likely cut years off your life. Lollygag is one of my favorite words, I hate to get behind them when trying to make a flight and making your way through the airport.  A 14 year study by the University of Pittsburgh concluded that senior citizens who are the fastest walkers live longer than those with slower paces. STUDY

Looking at the lives of slow and fast walkers who were 75 years old, only 19 percent of the slowest men and 35 percent of the slowest women lived another 10 years. Wow – did you catch that – only 19% lived another 10 years. That is a compelling argument to pick up the pace a little. When you are walking for exercise does your heart rate get elevated? How high? Are you checking it? Are you getting a sweat? Are you walking to get exercise consistently? It will increase your energy and cut your stress level.

However, 87 and 91 percent of the fastest walkers were still going after 10 years. I have always been a fast walker. I guess it helps to be tall and have long legs. How about you? Are you a lollygagger? Don’t be that person.

I would stop doing that right now. Walk with purpose. Remember the quality of your life later will be a function of the quality of your movement. It is not how LONG you live but what QUALITY of life you eventually have.

Why live a long live if you can hardly move and can not enjoy it! Take an honest assessment of your movement right now. Do not be one of the people who take “slow” walks and fool themselves into thinking they are getting quality exercise. It is better than nothing I agree AND you can do better than that…can’t you?

 

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How to Start Over – Starting Fresh

Posted by on Aug 5, 2013 in Blog, Video Series | 0 comments

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How to Become More Valuable

Posted by on Jul 8, 2013 in Blog, Video Series | 0 comments

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How to Maximize Referrals

Posted by on Jun 17, 2013 in Written Blog | 0 comments

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How to Improve Your Children – Chip Eichelberger

Posted by on May 31, 2013 in Video Series | 0 comments

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The Biggest Mistake in the Service Industry

Posted by on May 31, 2013 in Written Blog | 5 comments

I do not know about you, but it is rare for me to come across an employee in the service industry who is truly Switched On. I mean from the get go they are in the moment, bring energy and enthusiasm, a sincere interest in serving you and emotionally committed to what they do. Your immediate reaction is WOW!

When it does happen, I believe it is an exception. You likely travel quite a bit too. Think back to the recent times you checked in at a hotel. What was that experience like? Most of the time you get a, “Next” or “Checking in?” or my favorite silence. They say nothing. I love it because I say nothing too and will never speak first. I am the guest, they should welcome me! Give it a try, it’s fun.

It is rare you get someone Switched On (who notices you have bags with you and are likely checking in at 10pm) saying, “Welcome to the Marriott Marquis, we are glad you are here, let’s get you checked in, you have probably had a full day?”

waitress-2-2-midWouldn’t that be fantastic if that was the norm? Recently I was in Orlando trying to get home with thunderstorms throughout the SE (Southeast) making it difficult. I had accepted I would not make it to ATL (Atlanta) to make my connection home and would be stuck overnight in ATL. I went into the Delta Sky Club for an adult beverage and to wait for my delayed departure. When I checked in the agent was energetic and empathetic to my situation AND quickly realized there was a delayed flight just leaving now that would get me to ATL to make my connection to Knoxville. She printed a new boarding pass and send go!

It happened so fast I did not even get her name. What surprised me is that I had spoken to the special Diamond Line customer service (I fly a lot!) three times and none of the agents had come up with that option. I did make my it to ATL and just made it to my connection home. Yes!

If you are in a service business, encourage people to be playful and show their personality. Create an atmosphere that encourages them to have fun and set up a system to reward them for doing so.

What do you do to get your team Switched On before their day begins?

Reviews people post on Google Reviews, Yelp, Twitter, Facebook, Travelocity, Tripadvisor, Angie’s List or many other sites are very important for any business because often we start with a web search BEFORE we consider doing business somewhere. Have you checked your reviews recently? You could be losing business from a few disgruntled customers. Engage them and turn around their experience with you. It is makes you look great when you do that.

Employees who are Switched On and go the extra-mile for a customer with creative acts of service will not only feel great about themselves, but it can also drive their customer to tell their story on line and to all their friends.

What do you do to ensure Switched On employees and drive exceptional customer reviews?

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Improve Your Sales Skills – Don’t Drop Your Bucket

Posted by on May 28, 2013 in Video Series | 1 comment

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The Power of Belief – Chip Eichelberger

Posted by on May 28, 2013 in Video Series | 0 comments

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Are you a Professional?

Posted by on May 28, 2013 in Video Series | 0 comments

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At Least I Didn’t Kill Somebody

Posted by on May 28, 2013 in Written Blog | 0 comments

A recent WSJ article reported that “medical errors kill enough people to fill four jumbo jets a week.” Yikes that is hard to imagine that over 98,000 deaths a year from mistakes.! US surgeons operate on the wrong body part as often as 40 times a week. I remember when I ruptured my left Achilles…twice (@#$!%), that required two pretty extensive surgeries and I remember that they tagged my left leg as a reminder for the surgeon.

The frightening part of the story was that the mistakes go mostly unnoticed and the medical community rarely learns from them. As you might guess, the problem is that the preventable mistakes are being made over and over again and as Marty Makary reports “doctors are not very good at complying with well-established best practices in their fields.”

Currently there is not an effective rating system for surgeons or hospitals. For virtually everything else now you have a rating system: YELP and Angie’s List for business’s and service providers, Urban Spoon for restaurants, Google Reviews, Ebay and Amazon reviews of product and sellers to name a few.

I would bet that you check an online review in almost every situation you can when making a purchase, deciding where to eat or what movie to go to. I do not think a hospital in the country has an online system to track quality of care, reviews, infection rates, surgeon reviews, nurse reviews, # of preventable errors,  # of types of surgeries they do etc. There are a few sites popping up like RateMDs.com and Vitals.com for doctor reviews.

I accept that when sick people go to the hospital some will die. The question is how many die because of preventable errors? How many stories do you personally know of where an educated patient was able to stop a potential catastrophic error from being made?

There was report in the USA Today I have mentioned for years about a “checklist that cut death rates by 40% at 8 hospitals.” A checklist can be a valuable tool. It can help you put in a protocol that will help you not to forget something important. My question for those hospitals is what in the hell were the doing BEFORE they had a checklist?

Did they have a special meeting? “On the agenda today is a high number of preventable deaths of patients in this hospital. Someone says, hey, how about a checklist for every procedure to make sure we do it right every time? That’s a great idea!”

Fortunately for most of us, our errors do not result in preventable deaths. That is the good news. The bad news is that we may have let some aspects of what we do daily get a little too familiar and it is causing us to make preventable errors that are costing us in other ways. It could errors in establishing clear outcomes for a con call we are running, or in making the weekly sales meeting valuable, or in leveraging a sales call with a long time client, or in running our daily shift meeting in the restaurant, or in executing a service call with an unhappy client.

I still use an event checklist for every event I do to make sure am on top of all the details from the beginning. My dad asked me once, “Chip you have done over 900 events, are you still doing the little things every time to make them exceptional?

It has saved me many times! Recently I forgot to triple check with my client if  they had ordered the boards for the team building event I do – The Board Break Experience. The experience is not too impressive without boards! Luckily we were able to scramble at near the last minute and pull out a miracle to get them in time.
What has gotten too familiar for you? What are the preventable errors that you and your team are making that can be avoided? If you are in the service industry I guarantee those errors are what people are writing about you in online reviews! If they are there use them to train your team how to get better. Maybe you need to create a checklist for your sales calls. service calls, con call or pre-shift meetings to make sure you are prepared.

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Talent is overrated! Measurements that miss the mark!

Posted by on May 28, 2013 in Written Blog | 1 comment

The NFL Combine is coming up in a few weeks and the college football signing day is Wednesday. There are experts rating the prospects in hopes of finding the next superstars for their pro and college teams. The high school players are ranked in an elaborate ranking process to determine if the prospect gains the coveted 4 or 5 stars. Amazingly the QB with the highest completion percentage in the history of HS football is not getting looked at from Division 1 programs. More on that later.

nfl-combine-midAt the NFL Combine they put the players through a series of short term tests: 40/20/10 yard dash, vertical jump, broad jump, 3 cone drill, bench press. Many business’s use short term tests to evaluate their employees too.
Of course the conventional wisdom is if they excel at the combines they will have a stellar NFL career. A recent study by economists (University of Louisville) has a surprising conclusion – the combine is a waste of time! They say there is not consistent statistical relationship between how well a player does at the combine and how productive their NFL career is. Similar findings for the careers of  top 4 and 5 star college not reaching NFL glory. Why…can you guess? What do those short term tests NOT measure? Right!

Guts, character, grit, heart, determination in the face of adversity and frustration.

I live in Knoxville and if you were to name top 3 running backs in the NFL the last three seasons, former Tennessee Vol Arian Foster of the Houston Texans is in that group, yet in 2009, 7 rounds and 234 players were chosen and he was not one of them. He recently signed a 5 year deal worth of $43 million. What did the say about Arian after the combine?

“Jack-of-all-trades, master-of-none type. Lacks the explosiveness to consistently make defenders miss in tight quarters and is not the power runner his size would indicate. Inconsistent.” He has been the most productive running back from that years draft,  well ahead “more talented” running backs at the combine. What they did not say was what an amazing person he was.

Colin Kaepernick’s combine results merited this evaluation on NFL.com , “Kaepernick has enough physical tools to be viewed as a developmental backup quarterback prospect. As we all saw this season he is a tad better than that! Again he is performing well ahead of other highly regarded, “more talented” combine performers.

How many people do you know who did terrific on the SAT or have even have a PhD that have not achieved success?

How many hot-shot performers have you seen come and go in your career, especially in the sales arena? Talent can be an blessing and the key is what you do with it? How do you practice and perform when no one is watching? Once the test is over, what do you do?

There is a local kid named Charley High from Christian Academy of Knoxville. He is a QB and the Division 1 schools are not giving him a look. Here is what he has done in high school. He completed 74.4 percent of his 1,040 attempts for 10,978 yards and 131 touchdowns. He was intercepted 22 times. His career completion percentage was recognized as an official national record for high school football by the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS), as was his single-season mark (minimum: 275 attempts) from 2012 of 76.2 percent (378 of 496). Oh, and he lead his team to back to back state championships.

Why are they not giving him a look? Because they say he is too small. Didn’t play tough enough competition…..blah blah blah. What they underestimate is how hard this kids works, his dream to play at Tennessee, the quality of his parents, his understanding of how to play the position and his character. Charley is going to walk-on at UT and complete against the “more talented prospects”. It will be fun to watch how he does. I predict he will make it at Tennessee and become the starter as a sophomore. Be careful who you weed out because they did not perform well in your short term test.

 

 

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Who is the role model?

Posted by on May 28, 2013 in Written Blog | 0 comments

  I am getting a little tired of all the shows highlighting people who have lost a tremendous amount of weight. Their stories of people can serve as motivation and provide guidance to those who need it. 35.7% of the people in the USA are obese and an amazing 68% of Americans are overweight.

My point is this:

What about the people in who have done what it takes and made

the decisions to be in shape their entire lives?

Where is the show about the people who have always lead a healthy lifestyle? Only 3% of Americans lead a healthy lifestyle according to the Michigan State study. I am proud to have been a 3%’er my entire adult life and have worked hard to guide my family the same way.

Wouldn’t it be very useful for to study the 3% of people who have

been in shape and NEVER gotten out of shape?

How were they raised? What did their parents do to create the environment where they exercised together, purchased the right foods, purposely DID NOT have the house choked full of soda, chips, whole milk and processed foods?

I think it would be more valuable to make it the cool thing to be a 3%’er than having being overweight and obese as the norm. It has not always been that way. From 1950 through 1960, 33 percent of U.S. adults were overweight and only 9.7 percent were clinically obese, with body mass indexes above 30, according to doctor and author Jeffry Weiss. Obesity was not yet recognized as a disease in the 1950’s.

That is interesting to me…”not recognized as a disease in the 1950’s.”

Obesity was not a disease back then.…is it now? Have they changed the definition?

The answer is yes, the question is why? I always thought a disease was something that happened to you that was out of your control, not something you did to yourself: smoking, over drinking, drug dependency, obesity, lack of maintaining your body.

Did you know you can go on disability for the rest of your life and get paid by the government if you are obese. Check out this page from the web site DisabilitySecrets.com – that web sites exists to help people get on disability. Obesity is responsible for the largest portion of new disability claims by far and is growing rapidly. There is an entire industry working to get people on disability. There are of course many reasons to legitimately qualify, do not misinterpret my argument. The reality is the rate of people going on disability has outpaced the number of people getting jobs the last five years. That is not a good trend.

If you are not a 3%’er, get started now and see what impact it can have on your life. Share what you do and how you do it with others and be in inspiration!

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Don’t Be a Seagull

Posted by on May 28, 2013 in Written Blog | 2 comments

When your day starts off well, isn’t it downhill from there? How can you set the tone in your entire office? Even if you are not a leader you might soon be if you follow this best practice. If you are a leader and work in an office situation I want you to think about this:

What do you do the first 5 minutes when you get to the office?

how-to-poop-seagull-midNow – stop doing that! Do not go into your office! Start connecting with your team – be positive, present, energetic, be specific with your praise, great eye contact, uplifting tone of voice, physical touch where appropriate.

Thank you for…I need you because…I am proud of you because…

I believe in you because…I appreciate you for… You make a difference when you…

 

Keep it positive to create momentum. Do not be a seagull! Seagull Managers tend to swoop in, tell everyone what they are doing wrong, squawk and complain loudly, crap all over everyone and they fly back into their office. They tend to make a bad situation even worse.

There are also Seagull Parents. First thing in the morning or when they get home.  Instead focusing on what their kids were excited about for their day or what was great about their day they immediately jump on what they did not do, forgotten to do or what mistakes they made.

Being a Seagull is a momentum killer and is unhealthy not only for the Seagull but everyone around them. Not to mention a messy clean up! If you have that tendency you need to interrupt your pattern of behavior. BEFORE you go into the office or the kitchen, STOP, look up and smile and take a breath. Think about what you are about to do and the impact you want to have. Feel that emotion and smile. Ask where is my energy on a 0 -10 scale? Get to a 10! Clench your fist and say YES!  Change your focus from what is wrong to what is right.

 

Bring the energy with you before you engage!

 

no-seagull-midAs a leader, do the same thing the last five minutes of the day. Do the same routine and set the tone to close out the day. What went really well? What are they proud of about today’s performance? What are they excited about for tomorrow?

You do not have to be sick to get better. We all have our “seagull” moments. Recognizing it is the first step to recovery.

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92.4% of businesses need to do this better, do you?

Posted by on May 28, 2013 in Written Blog | 0 comments

 When you made your last purchase on Amazon did you check the reviews before you bought? Before you hired that service company did you check them out online – Yelp/Angie’s List/Google Reviews first or ask for past customers you could call? Before you booked that trip or vacation did you check out the hotel/resort on Hotels.com/Priceline/ Trip Advisor first to see what others said about their stay?

The Law of Social Proof is vastly underutilized by most businesses in person or on their web site. The law states that when someone is unsure how to proceed they will look to what others have done previously to help them make a decision. Have you ever gone to a move, play or new restaurant because someone told you it was fantastic? Have you ever not gone because someone told you it was terrible?

i-love-you-man-midI am a big believer in the power of documenting your success and what makes your product or customer experience superior, engaging and of great value. For me, I will get a call from a meeting planner who had a fellow employee who saw me speak at an association meeting they attend and insist the meeting planner book me for their companies next convention. That is social proof in action. To verify their decision they will often look for other validation.

On my website use social proof by placing quality written testimonials and video testimonials on my site. I have also just started a Yelp listing recently. Kind of unique for my business, but I wanted to get ahead of the curve. If you loved what I do at your event, I would be honored to receive your recommendation on Yelp.

What are doing to use the power of social proof?

Do you have a compelling, short video that will engage the viewer and tell your story? Do you have written testimonials and pictures with them? Do you have videos (under 90 seconds) of customers raving about you? Do you have case studies, free reports, “how to” articles sprinkled with how you have made a difference with past clients?

For more advice on this check out my article – Proof Positive: A Good Story Can Be Telling.

Let your thrilled customers/members know that documenting your success is important and where they can do it for you. If you are a retail business, have a quality YELP sign customers can see. If you are a service business simply ask them? When you exceed their expectations will they take a picture with you and give a quote you can show other thrilled customers? Will they let you take a short video of them? Let them know they can leave a review for you and where. It is important to have many reviews because if one person or a competitor leaves a bad review it will look bad. If someone has a problem engage them quickly to take care of it.

Examples:

– the Dive Shop that markets several trips a year to exotic locations has videos of the trips they have taken on their site showing people loving the experience.

–   the Cabinet Maker/Home Improvement Company who takes before/after pictures of the job and gets a final picture in the new kitchen/room addition WITH the home owner and a quote documenting their amazing experience.

– the Software Company who has case studies documenting what the customers experience was like before their software was installed and the massive improvement after it was integrated for the client – ROI, Total Cost of Ownership.

– the Business Broker/Realtor/Sales Person who has received quality recommendations on LinkedIn that prospects can review to help them make a decision. They also have quality testimonials, pictures, stories, case studies they can show in person too. Document you are worth your fee!

The key of course is to do the little things consistently to surprise the customer and generate massive value and a compelling experience. My unscientific poll says that 92.4% of you can do a much better job of using social proof. What can you do to improve now?

What unique ways are you using social proof?

 

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Sitting is killing you! Get off your ass, change your life!

Posted by on May 28, 2013 in Written Blog | 0 comments

How much of the day are you sitting or not moving? For many it is 30, 40 or more than 50 hours a week. Dr. Peter Katzmarzyk, a researcher at one the nation’s leading obesity research centers says that sitting, not weight or exercise, is a key factor in determining a person’s overall health. According to Katzmarzky,

treadmill-mid“The evidence that sitting is associated with heart disease is very strong. We see it in people who smoke and people who don’t. We see it in people who are regular exercisers and those who aren’t. Sitting is an independent risk factor.”

Marc Hamilton is a physiologist and professor at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, La. As he told Men’s Health, ” a man who sits 60 hours at a desk job but still works out for 45 minutes a day five times a week still has a sedentary lifestyle.”

David Agus, MD reports, ” if you sit at your desk 6 hours a day is the equivalent of SMOKING a pack and a quarter of cigarettes!” It should be obvious now that TV watching is strongly associated with obesity and weight gain, independent of diet and exercise.

Yikes! Those three quotes should get our attention. The question is what can we do about it now?

Commit to a minimum number of days a month you will get 30 minute sessions to get aerobic sessions ideally in the morning. Aerobic means “with oxygen” – aerobic exercise is crucial to building your heart/lungs and immune system. Track your commitment and LIVE IT on the Get Switched On Energy Schedule on the mirror in your bathroom.

If you work in a typical office situation try these ideas:

Rethink your office – Start having some meetings where you are walking and talking rather than being in a conference room. For some it is literally possible to put a treadmill in your office. I have a Crescendo mini trampoline in my office, (9″ high/36″ wide) that easily stands up and takes very little room. Jumping on this for at least 5 minutes several times a day will make a huge difference in your energy level. Turn on some music and get jumping.

Sit/stand desks – having the ability to stand AND work ergonomically at your desk is catching on quickly. I am looking for a unit that will work with my existing desk set up. If you are in a big company, there are many options for you that are amazing.

Motion creates emotion!

If you move you will also feel better and can quickly change your attitude from negative to positive.

Leverage technology – On your next con-call can you be taking a walk at the same time? Use wireless technology to get out of the office when possible to move and get some sunshine.  Use a wireless headset that allows you to move and stand when you are on a phone call.

Change your routine – Take more small breaks during the day to manage your energy better. Get up to move and stretch or a few yoga positions, walk up or down the stairs, park far away and walk instead of as parking as close as you can, take the stairs not the elevator, get off the bus one stop away and walk the rest of the way, some can ride a bike to work. Bring a small cooler to work and have healthy munchies with you all day and less access to junk.

At home – if you have kids, this should be easy. Play with them outside, invent games, jog, ride bikes, jump on the big trampoline, take walks, play tennis, WALK when you play golf, do your own yard work, do exercises/push up contests during commercials when you watch TV. Have a daily walk alone or with your spouse. To make it aerobic you will need to move quick enough to elevate your heart rate.

Instead of watching all of the football game, try listening to the first half on the radio on a long walk and watch the second half.

I guess it comes down to this – how long to you want to live?

What quality of life to you want to have when you get there? Are you on track now? If not, make some changes to get moving! Keep me posted on your progress.

Please tweet this to your followers and post on Facebook. You might save a life!

 

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Does a college education prepare you for a career?

Posted by on May 28, 2013 in Written Blog | 0 comments

There are now 111 universities that cost over $50,000 a year to attend and that does NOT include room and board. What is amazing is that number has DOUBLED in just three short years! Yikes! If you are like me and have multiple children approaching college age, it is a real concern. When I went to the University of Oregon in the early 1980’s I believe my out of state tuition was under $7,000 a year. Is a college degree today worth it or more specifically, does what you will learn in college really prepare you for a career?

The word education is derived from the Greek word educare,  which means to ‘draw out from within’ or to ‘lead forth’. The implication is that the purpose of education is to l ead the young out of their ignorance , draw out their potential, teach them to think and have the ability to learn. Are colleges doing that effectively? I do not want to get started discussing the “left leaning bias” of many teachers in the classroom and the goal of drawing out ignorance. I love this classic picture of John Belushi from Animal House. The movie was filmed at U of O the year before I arrived.

belushi-1-mid

You have seen reports that debt from student loans has now surpassed the total debt from credit cards. How many do you know with a college or even advanced degree that have a huge loan debt only to graduate and get a job for low pay or even worse are unemployed?

A recent article, Colleges Get Career-Minded, reports that finally some universities are now reconsidering what they teach. What skills do you learn that will really help you in a future career? What are they educating for? Some schools are working closer with employers in the classroom to define the skills the students really need.

If you had $200,000+ saved for college is it a solid investment anymore? What are the alternatives? Could you spend much less and get the same result? If you had $200k saved could you buy a business and teach your child to run it with a mentor? Are kids learning how to show up on time with a great attitude, work hard for 10 hours and not complain, deliver amazing service and have the heart of a servant? Are they learning how to write and speak with precision and passion? How many are learning what it takes to be an entrepreneur and take an idea from start-up, to funding to fruition?

A new model is needed for colleges and universities to impart the skills and mindset to succeed in the future without loading a student with a debt it will take them 20+ years to pay off. Students and parents deserve a  clearer and quicker ROI.

A recent WSJ article reported a 5% vacancy rate in manufacturing jobs that means 600,000 jobs right now are unfilled because they can not find employees with the right skills: machinists, craft workers and technicians. Almost none of these high paying jobs requires a college degree.

What are you considering now for your kids and college or vocational/technical training?  I am looking at all my options and networking for potential internships. Are you considering any alternatives? What do you think colleges should focus on teaching now?

 

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In case of emergency…

Posted by on May 28, 2013 in Written Blog | 0 comments

Sometimes great advice can come from unlikely sources. Have you ever been white water rafting? My first time was on the Ocoee River in North Carolina with some good friends before a wedding. There are some class III and IV rapids with a couple V thrown in for good measure. If you do not have a reference point for what that means, imagine you were sitting in the bottom of a six foot pool and the waves are as high as the sides. It will push most anyone out of their comfort zone quickly.

raftOur guide told that if you get thrown out of the raft, try to get a good breath and keep your feet up. That way you will not get them stuck in a rock. Then he said something I will never forget;

“In case of an emergency, you must take an active role in your own rescue.”

Good advice under most circumstances, but especially if you’re about to transit a raging river.  Well, we were about halfway into the adventure and we when into a massive rapid aptly name Devil’s Hole.  I was front left and I tried to hold on with my feet, but I went flying out of the boat.  They said I was underwater for almost 15 seconds.  All they could see was the top of my paddle.  Finally, I popped up, remembered to keep my feet  up.  I fought hard make it back to the raft and got help to get back in. I had to take an active role in my rescue and work hard to get back to the raft.

What rapids are you facing right now? Are you still in the boat or have you been thrown out and fighting to get back in?

We got a wake-up call in the near melt down of fall 2008 a nd for many business has been changing ever since. I know what I do has gotten consistently more difficult and the advice of that guide has been burning my ears.

Take an active role in my own rescue.

With career, marriage, children, money concerns, health issues, community or church obligations and whatever else you’ve got going on, it can be challenging to pop back up, stay calm, fight to get back into the raft and get moving again.

Here are 3 things you can do right now:

1. Take a deep breath and relax. It will be OK. Look up and smile for me. You have what it takes to get through this. Have absolute faith in your abilities. If you need to laugh, look down for me. Can you see the ground? Yes, congratulations, you are still above ground and in the game.

2. Swim like hell and fight! You have more reserve energy and passion than you realize. Now is the time to take great care of yourself and be in top condition. Drink more water, cut out the soda, drink the Get Switched On Smoothie 4 days a week, log at least 15 aerobic days a month on your Get Switched On Energy Schedule, read/watch/listen to positive material and spend time with supportive people.

3. Make a decision and take decisive action now. Is there a brutal fact you must confront? What can you decide to do right now that will make a difference? What is your first step? Create your plan of action and get moving.

Let me know what you think.

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