Business

Why Does Your Message Matter?

Your message matters more than you know.  Let me give you an example from this past week.  I created two posts both with the goal of growing my newsletter.  One offered free pie from Pie Bar (Seriously, click that link and buy a pie… you won’t regret it) and the other invited people into an adventure to discover how to better engage and serve their customers.  I was blown away by the outcomes. Now the numbers you are about to read are nothing grand, but they are incredibly telling.

The pie post had under 200 views in over three days, no likes, no comments, no new subscribers.

Invitation into an adventure post had over 550 views in under 24 hours, 5 likes, 2 comments and 4 new subscribers.  What that translates into is over a 200% increase in views in under 24 hours, a 500% increase in likes, a 200% increase in comments and a 400% increase in subscribes.  Those percentages are a little hokey, but that’s why I gave you specifics up top. I hope you see the importance of this lesson. Your message matters. Give the people what they want, and don’t stop trying until you do.

Community

Life Change Through Ordinary Dates And Adventures.

Dates, adventures, and trips don’t have to be extravagant.  Those things can be ordinary and that is more than ok.  

Right now my family doesn’t have much if any expendable income. That absolutely sucks at times because issues with health, cars and anything else that life brings keeps us from doing anything the world or Instagram would deem exciting.  I want to offer my family the world so not being able to do cool “noteworthy” things is a big hit to my ego.

What I am constantly being reminded of is the fact that dates with my wife don’t have to be big shindigs. Maybe it is us just Netflixing and Chilling… or whatever the kids are calling it now-a-days. Maybe a date is me grabbing chips and queso from a local place and making margaritas at home so we don’t have a big liquor bill at the restaurant. Maybe it is us just going on a quiet walk around the hood. All of these ideas have minimal expense and are anything but Instagram worthy, but they allow us to connect and have fun.  The truth is, I don’t want to divorce my wife in 30 years because I don’t know her. Just because we don’t have the money doesn’t mean we can’t do dates and connect.  The same idea holds true for time with my kids or time with the family as a whole. We are blessed that my in-laws own a cabin an hour away from where we live so vacations or time away doesn’t cost more then some groceries and gas.

This lesson that things don’t have to be extravagant but can be ordinary is a tough one and something my wife and I have to keep on reminding ourselves of constantly.  I promise, if you latch on to this concept, not only will your wallet thank you, but you won’t live in guilt as it gives you freedom to just enjoy your wife and your kids.  Now go do something ordinary.

Business

I’m Not Your Friend

I freakin love relationships.  I love people. So why the title? Why the post about not being your friend? Let me paint a picture. (This is the part where if this was a movie it would do a ripple fade to another shot).
It’s a normal Tuesday, early afternoon.  You are just getting back from lunch and diving right back into the project that you had to take a break from. As you look up, you see a mountain of emails filling your inbox, and out of the corner of your eye you see a coworker coming over to talk to you about an issue they wanted your help with.  As all of this is going on, you hear a faint noise coming from your right… its the ring tone of your office phone. You don’t want to be a jerk and ignore it so you reach over and pick it up off of the receiver.
As you greet the other person on the line with a hearty hello and your name, what comes next isn’t unusual, but it is jaw dropping.  “Hey Paul, this is so and so from blank company.  I know its been a couple months or so since I last reached out, so I figured I’d call to see how everything is going and catch up.”  Like I said, not unusual, but it is jaw dropping.
All of us have experienced this, and some of us, myself included, are guilty of doing this jaw dropping action.  The exact words we use ourselves, or hear from the other line, may be a little different, but it all amounts to the same thing.  We have no relationship but  would like to shoot the s#!t and burn 15 of their minutes idly chatting.
Again, I am 100% about relationships, but I have begun to see the importance of being selective with those relationships and who I share my time with.  It’s also not that I don’t want to form new relationships, it’s just that I don’t want to idly chit chat with someone who is a complete stranger.
Whenever we call, whether it is a friend, and especially if it is a new contact, call with intention.  Call with a specific, not general, question in mind and if you can hear stress and frustration in their voice, give them an out.  I know this may seem counterproductive to sales, but if you are always calling and idly chit chatting you are not only wasting their time, but yours as well.  The strongest relationships I have, have started  over the simplest things, but those conversations where had with intention.
Remember, I’m not your friend, at least not yet, so please don’t pretend that we are.  Start calling people with intention and I promise those relationships will form.
Business

I Am Not A Hunter

What are you great at?  I know if you asked me that question, I would say building relationships and sharing in peoples stories.  I love getting to know people for who they are and seeing how we can best partner up and help each other.  Not everyone is wired this way and that is what this article is all about, sorry outdoor enthusiasts or folks who love posts about gun regulations.
We need to fully understand what we are great at, which is part of our personal brand, if we truly want to  make the most sales and have the biggest impact.  If you find yourself as the proverbial “hunter” in sales, then by all means, go out and do your quick kills and bring that back to the “family” so we can eat.  If you are a farmer,  then understand you still have great value for the “family.”  You are playing the long game as you cultivate relationships.  You are the ones that have the opportunity to yield more than what you have “planted.” 
Please do us all a favor and be uniquely you.  Learn what you can from others and books, but apply that with your own personality, shake it up, and see what comes out.  If you want to have more sales, a giant impact, and know what opportunity to choose, first figure out what your great at and then do all you can to do more of that in your job.  Don’t try and be someone else.   Be you through and through and opportunities will start to come about.
Business

Why Empathy Matters

Why does it even matter for us to empathize with others?
This past year I had hip surgery. I knew the recovery would take time and be difficult in some aspects, but until I was going through it, I didn’t realize how hard it would be.  For two weeks I couldn’t drive and I never imagined how giving up that freedom could be so life altering.  I hated having to rely on others for every move I wanted to make.  There is so much freedom that comes with a car, and I now fully understand that.
Not only could I not drive for a couple weeks, but I also have a semi constant numbness and pain that I feel in the area around my surgery, and when I do certain movements there is a flash of searing pain.  Now I have not taken pain meds since after the third day of surgery, but going through this experience has helped me understand how people could take those meds longer than they should.  It would be so easy for someone to have this little bit of pain and want it solved through pills.
Since this experience, I can better empathize with others around me.  What I have come to realize is that most of the time we only no a small part of someone’s story.  Before we decide to judge or make a decision about someone, we really need to hear what is going on in their lives.  Showing empathy will further endear you to those you are in a contact with and is a great way to build a foundation that could eventually lead to a great connection.  If you want to build a strong relationship and show someone you really care, it starts with a massive dose of empathy and realizing that we are all in this together.  If you truly want to succeed in business, this is one of those foundational things you need to work on.