The Long Game

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in We=All Who Matter
Reading time: 1 min.

Driving a bargain, cutting a corner, or forcing a result are ways of playing the short game. We gain but it doesn’t last because someone else has lost. Having thus chipped (or hacked?) away at the foundation of relationships, we end up unable to realize the peace, power, and profit of true partnership.

Let us always play the long game.

 

In your corner,

Mike

 

Today’s photo credit: Pauline Guilmot cc

Our Best Start

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Career, Job search, Leading, Sales and Influence
Reading time: 1 min.

In an interview, in a sale, when working with colleagues, or when leading others, we best start by understanding what our counterparts need, want, and desire. Then we can explore with them how our talents, products, services, ideas, and requests serve those needs etc. Our first steps are to ask open-ended questions about what they want and why. Then we confirm our understanding of what we hear.

We may be tempted not to use this approach as it appears to take too long. Really, though, anything else generates resistance and lengthens the time to get hired, make the sale, come to agreement, or see proper action.

 

In your corner,

Mike

 

Today’s photo credit: jakeandlindsay cc

We Have a Manipulation Problem

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Leading, Sales and Influence
Reading time: 2 min.

We have a manipulation problem. We don’t want to manipulate or be manipulated. But we all want to get various and sundry people to do what we want. So we tie ourselves in knots trying to get people to do stuff without even seeming manipulative.

But what if we could convince others in ways that they benefit? And what if we could do that convincing not with our ideas of what would be good for them and why but with their own, honest, deeply held reasons?

You may think this sounds too much like a certain orange man’s plan for getting other people to pay for his folly. But consider this: if someone has her own, valid, 100% self-generated, and self-beneficial reasons for agreeing with our suggestion, there can be no foul, no manipulation.

We can help others get to this place by first affirming that they do not have to do what we suggest; the choice is 100% theirs. Next we ask them to consider why they might want to do what we suggest. Then we only accept from them reasons that are honestly beneficial to them (e.g. “You said you thought you should do this. But I am interested in why might you want to do it, for your own benefit.”).

Win, win.

 

In your corner,

Mike

 

Today’s photo credit: Alan Levine cc

Better Business Decisions

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Leading, Strategy
Reading time: 1 min.

We will make much better business decisions when we slow down. We will then be able to take some time, go for win-win, ask a few trusted advisors, and use our logic plus our gut-smarts.

We need not slow down too much.  But we do have to give up on the myth that our value is in coming up with the answers.  Our job is to make sure that decisions are made well and in a timely way

 

In your corner,

Mike

 

Today’s photo credit: Brandon Carpenter cc

That Successful 

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Success
Reading time: 1 min.

Measuring up, beating the other guy, and doing what we’re supposed to do are sad substitutes for success. What really gets us there are creativity, win-win, and doing what we are.

Our world desperately needs you to be that successful.

 

In your corner,

Mike

 

Today’s photo credit: lisadonoghue(away) cc

Ask, Don’t Tell

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Leading, Sales and Influence, We=All Who Matter
Reading time: 1 min.

Tell me the answers, what I should do, what’s right, and you may get my grudging compliance. You certainly will be training me to distrust your motives and defend against your suggestions in the future.

But, dear leader, ask me what I think, help me explore options and my own motivation, then set aside your opinions and just plain old hear me, and you will spur me to inspired action, sustained success, and real loyalty.

Think about this the next time you catch yourself in the weeds, pushing, and wondering why they just don’t get it.

 

In your corner,

Mike

 

Today’s photo credit: Véronique Debord-Lazaro cc

Leading and Selling By The One Thing That Motivates Us All

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Leading, Sales and Influence
Reading time: 1 min.

To lead and sell better, we want to know what motivates our teams and clients. Luckily, we can boil down anything anyone says they want to just one thing: happiness.

We get to happiness along typical pathways such as freedom, meaning, creativity, growth, connection, competence, and challenge. And we tend to mistake false proxies like title, revenue, salary, features, functions, or price for routes to happiness. (They are happy byproducts.)

We are not here to provide happiness for our teams and clients. We are here, via our leadership and sales, to help them see their pathways and how, working together via our organization and mission, we help each other progress toward more and more happiness.

 

In your corner,

Mike

 

Today’s photo credit:
A. Charlotte Riley
cc

A Mini Rant About Sales

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Sales and Influence
Reading time: 1 min.

I recently read someone’s description of a salesperson. Salespeople, they said, “have the ability to position a product or service in a way that makes customers want to buy it.”

No, no, nope, no.

This is not the kind of sales or salespeople any of us wants or needs. Good salespeople (including people who sell but who would never call themselves salespeople) don’t make anyone do anything.  They see their job as exploring whether it would benefit us and them to work together now. Their talents are not positioning and convincing but being trustworthy and guiding conversations toward win-win-or-let’s-not-play-right-now.

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: For a service business, working together looks like a project that might go from tiny (clean and press the customer’s shirts) to gargantuan (rework their global production and distribution chain). For a product business, working together means providing a tangible something (also from tiny to huge) and related services.

 

Today’s photo credit: Found Animals Foundation cc

Why Pushing Your Solution Isn’t The Solution

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Leading, Sales and Influence, We=All Who Matter
Reading time: 1 min.

Push your solution and you may get it. If you do, it likely will fail to be as good as it could have been. This is true because your solution will miss important things that others know and because others will naturally (if sometimes subtly, as when people maliciously comply) resist anything they haven’t had a say in.

Instead of pushing, pause. Learn the Others’ needs, wants, desires–that is, what would make a win for them. Teach them yours. Then see what solutions emerge between you. The solution you end up with may not be your own and it may appear to take longer to decide upon. But it will be richer, easier to implement (without all the resistance), and more enduring.

 

In your corner,

Mike

 

Today’s photo credit: Bill Smith cc

When We do the Opposite of What We Really Need to Do

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Success
Reading time: 1 min.

Wherever we see troubles we can usually find a hidden assumption about scarcity lurking about. Out of a fear of lack or a fear for survival, we do the opposite of what we really need to do: we defend our turf or attack others. This may lead to short-lived gains but will leave us still in fear. Instead, if we collaborate, we generate better ideas that disprove the lack and create sustained security, profit, and joy.

We leaders can apply this insight in business, at home, and around the world. As soon a we see winning as “I win and you win,” or “We win and they win,” everything changes.

In your corner,

Mike

Today’s photo credit: Observing #Earth – ISS Expedition 13 via photopin (license)