Implementationlists

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Implementationlists

  1. 1. Welcome to Tom Peters “PowerPoint World”! Beyond the set of slides here, you will find at tompeters.com the last eight years of presentations, a basketful of “Special Presentations,” and, above all, Tom’s constantly updated Master Presentation —from which most of the slides in this presentation are drawn. There are about 3,500 slides in the 7-part “Master Presentation.” The first five “chapters” constitute the main argument: Part I is context. Part II is devoted entirely to innovation—the sine qua non, as perhaps never before, of survival. In earlier incarnations of the “master,” “innovation” “stuff” was scattered throughout the presentation—now it is front and center and a stand-alone. Part III is a variation on the innovation theme—but it is organized to examine the imperative (for most everyone in the developed-emerging world) of an ultra high value-added strategy. A “value-added ladder” (the “ladder” configuration lifted with gratitude from Joe Pine and Jim Gilmore’s Experience Economy ) lays out a specific logic for necessarily leaving commodity-like goods and services in the dust. Part IV argues that in this age of “micro-marketing” there are two macro -markets of astounding size that are dramatically under-attended by all but a few; namely women and boomers-geezers. Part V underpins the overall argument with the necessary bedrock—Talent, with brief consideration of Education & Healthcare. Part VI examines Leadership for turbulent times from several angles. Part VII is a collection of a dozen Lists—such as Tom’s “Irreducible 209,” 209 “things I’ve learned along the way.” Enjoy! Download! “Steal”—that’s the whole point!
  2. 2. NOTE : To appreciate this presentation [and ensure that it is not a mess ], you need Microsoft fonts: “Showcard Gothic,” “Ravie,” “Chiller” and “Verdana”
  3. 3. Tom peters on implementation 14 January 2008
  4. 4. The “Have you 50”
  5. 5. “ Mapping your competitive position” or …
  6. 6. While waiting last week [early December 2007] in the Albany airport to board a Southwest Airlines flight to Reagan, I happened across the latest Harvard Business Review , on the cover of which was a yellow sticker. The sticker had on it the words “Mapping your competitive position.” It referred to a feature article by my friend Rich D’Aveni. His work is uniformly good—and I have said as much publicly on several occasions dating back 15 years. I’m sure this article is good, too—though I didn’t read it. In fact it triggered a furious negative “Tom reaction” as my wife calls it. Of course I believe you should worry about your “competitive position.” But instead of obsessing on competitive position and other abstractions, as the B-schools and consultants would always have us do, I instead wondered about some “practical stuff” which I believe is more important to the short- and long-term health of the enterprise, tiny or enormous.
  7. 7. 1. Have you in the last 10 days … visited a custome r? 2. Have you called a customer … TODAY ? 3. Have you in the last 60-90 days … had a seminar in which several folks from the customer’s operation (different levels, different functions, different divisions) interacted, via facilitator, with various of your folks? 4. Have you thanked a front-line employee for a small act of helpfulness … in the last three days? 5. Have you thanked a front-line employee for a small act of helpfulness … in the last three hours ? 6. Have you thanked a frontline employee for carrying around a great attitude … today? 7. Have you in the last week recognized—publicly—one of your folks for a small act of cross-functional co-operation ? 8. Have you in the last week recognized—publicly—one of “their” folks (another function) for a small act of cross-functional co-operation? 9. Have you invited in the last month a leader of another function to your weekly team priorities meeting? 10. Have you personally in the last week-month called-visited an internal or external customer to sort out, inquire, or apologize for some little or big thing that went awry? (No reason for doing so? If true—in your mind—then you’re more out of touch than I dared imagine.)
  8. 8. MBWA * *5,000 miles for a 5-minute face-to -face meeting (courtesy super- agent Mark McCormick)
  9. 9. “ I call 60 CEOs [in the first week of the year] to wish them happy New Year. …” —Hank Paulson, former CEO, Goldman Sachs Source: Fortune , “Secrets of Greatness,” 0320.05
  10. 10. “ Courtesies of a small and trivial character are the ones which strike deepest in the grateful and appreciating heart.” —Henry Clay
  11. 11. 11. Have you in the last two days had a chat with someone (a couple of levels down?) about specific deadlines concerning a project’s next steps? 12. Have you in the last two days had a chat with someone (a couple of levels down?) about specific deadlines concerning a project’s next steps … and what specifically you can do to remove a hurdle ? (“Ninety percent of what we call management consists of making it difficult for people to get things done.”—Peter “His eminence” Drucker.) 13. Have you celebrated in the last week a “small” (or large!) milestone reached? (I.e., are you a milestone fanatic?) 14. Have you in the last week or month revised some estimate in the “wrong” direction and apologized for making a lousy estimate? (Somehow you must publicly reward the telling of difficult truths .) 15. Have you installed in your tenure a very comprehensive customer satisfaction scheme for all internal customers? (With major consequences for hitting or missing the mark.) 16. Have you in the last six months had a week-long, visible, very intensive visit-“tour” of external customers? 17. Have you in the last 60 days called an abrupt halt to a meeting and “ordered” everyone to get out of the office, and “into the field” and in the next eight hours , after asking those involved, fixed (f-i-x-e-d!) a nagging “small” problem through practical action? 18. Have you in the last week had a rather thorough discussion of a “cool design thing” someone has come across—away from your industry or function—at a Web site, in a product or its packaging? 19. Have you in the last two weeks had an informal meeting—at least an hour long—with a frontline employee to discuss things we do right, things we do wrong, what it would take to meet your mid- to long-term aspirations? 20. Have you had in the last 60 days had a general meeting to discuss “things we do wrong” … that we can fix in the next fourteen days ?
  12. 12. 21. Have you had in the last year a one-day, intense offsite with each (?) of your internal customers—followed by a big celebration of “things gone right”? 22. Have you in the last week pushed someone to do some family thing that you fear might be overwhelmed by deadline pressure? 23. Have you learned the names of the children of everyone who reports to you? (If not, you have six months to fix it.) 24. Have you taken in the last month an interesting- weird outsider to lunch? 25. Have you in the last month invited an interesting-weird outsider to sit in on an important meeting? 26. Have you in the last three days discussed something interesting, beyond your industry, that you ran across in a meeting, reading, etc? 27. Have you in the last 24 hours injected into a meeting “I ran across this interesting idea in [strange place]”? 28. Have you in the last two weeks asked someone to report on something, anything that constitutes an act of brilliant service rendered in a “trivial” situation—restaurant, car wash, etc? (And then discussed the relevance to your work.) 29. Have you in the last 30 days examined in detail (hour by hour) your calendar to evaluate the degree “time actually spent” mirrors your “espoused priorities”? (And repeated this exercise with everyone on team.) 30. Have you in the last two months had a presentation to the group by a “weird” outsider?
  13. 13. You = Your calendar * *Calendars never lie
  14. 14. 31. Have you in the last two months had a presentation to the group by a customer, internal customer, vendor featuring “working folks” 3 or 4 levels down in the vendor organization? 32. Have you in the last two months had a presentation to the group of a cool, beyond-our-industry ideas by two of your folks? 33. Have you at every meeting today (and forever more) re-directed the conversation to the practicalities of implementation concerning some issue before the group? 34. Have you at every meeting today (and forever more) had an end-of-meeting discussion on “action items to be dealt with in the next 4, 48 hours? (And then made this list public—and followed up in 48 hours.) And made sure everyone has at least one such item.) 35. Have you had a discussion in the last six months about what it would take to get recognition in local-national poll of “best places to work”? 36. Have you in the last month approved a cool-different training course for one of your folks? 37. Have you in the last month taught a front-line training course? 38. Have you in the last week discussed the idea of Excellence ? (What it means, how to get there.) 39. Have you in the last week discussed the idea of “Wow”? (What it means, how to inject it into an ongoing “routine” project.) 40. Have you in the last 45 days assessed some major process in terms of the details of the “experience,” as well as results, it provides to its external or internal customers?
  15. 15. 41. Have you in the last month had one of your folks attend a meeting you were supposed to go to which gives them unusual exposure to senior folks? 42. Have you in the last 60 (30?) days sat with a trusted friend or “coach” to discuss your “management style”—and its long- and short-term impact on the group? 43. Have you in the last three days considered a professional relationship that was a little rocky and made a call to the person involved to discuss issues and smooth the waters? (Taking the “blame,” fully deserved or not, for letting the thing-issue fester.) 44. Have you in the last … two hours … stopped by someone’s (two-levels “down”) office-workspace for 5 minutes to ask “What do you think?” about an issue that arose at a more or less just completed meeting? (And then stuck around for 10 or so minutes to listen—and visibly taken notes.) 45. Have you … in the last day … looked around you to assess whether the diversity pretty accurately maps the diversity of the market being served? (And …) 46. Have you in the last day at some meeting gone out of your way to make sure that a normally reticent person was engaged in a conversation—and then thanked him or her, perhaps privately, for their contribution? 47. Have you during your tenure instituted very public (visible) presentations of performance? 48. Have you in the last four months had a session specifically aimed at checking on the “corporate culture” and the degree we are true to it—with all presentations by relatively junior folks, including front-line folks? (And with a determined effort to keep the conversation restricted to “real world” “small” cases—not theory.) 49. Have you in the last six months talked about the Internal Brand Promise ? 50. Have you in the last year had a full-day off site to talk about individual (and group) aspirations?
  16. 16. Relationships (of all varieties) : THERE ONCE WAS A TIME WHEN A THREE - MINUTE PHONE CALL WOULD HAVE AVOIDED SETTING OFF THE DOWNWARD SPIRAL THAT RESULTED IN A COMPLETE RUPTURE.
  17. 17. R.O.I.R.
  18. 18. R eturn O n I nvestment In R elationships
  19. 19. The magic number 25. Mbwa. Calendars never lie. Excellence. Always. Tom Peters/0709.07
  20. 20. 25
  21. 21. Though his empire is enormous, and his executive team strong, Starbucks founder Howard Schultz still … religiously … visits at least 25 S’bucks shops … per week ! “Regardless of our size,” he told me, “we still sell it one-cup-at-a-time, one customer-at-a-time, one server-at- a-time. I need to see it and touch it and feel it.”
  22. 22. MBWA * *5,000 miles for a 5-minute face-to -face meeting (courtesy super- agent Mark McCormick)
  23. 23. When Bob Waterman and I wrote In Search of Excellence in 1982, business was “by the numbers”—and the Americans were struggling (to put it mildly) with hands on, tactile stuff, like Japanese quality. Then, at Hewlett Packard, we were introduced to the famed “HP Way,” the centerpiece of which was in-touch management. HP had a term for this … MBWA. (Managing By Wandering Around.) Bob and I fell in immediate love. Not only was the idea per se important and cool, but it symbolized everything we were coming to cherish—enterprises where bosses-leaders were in immediate touch with and emotionally attached to workers, customers, the product. The idea is as important or more important in fast-paced 2007 as it was in 1982.
  24. 24. “ 20-minute rule” —Craig Johnson/30 yrs
  25. 25. Craig Johnson, a famed Venture Capitalist for three decades … refuses to invest in companies that are more than a 20-minute drive from his office. To guide them through the serpentine path ahead, he insists that he must be in constant touch as banker, advisor, friend.
  26. 26. >70 * *Hank Paulson, China visits, Fortune 1127.06
  27. 27. China is clearly our most important economic partner. Our dialog with China was not what it might have been when Hank Paulson took over as Secretary of the Treasury. Immediate improvement occurred for numerous reasons, not least of which were Paulson’s SEVENTY TRIPS to China while at Goldman Sachs.
  28. 28. “ I call 60 CEOs [in the first week of the year] to wish them happy New Year. …” —Hank Paulson, former CEO, Goldman Sachs Source: Fortune , “Secrets of Greatness,” 0320.05
  29. 29. MBWA, Grameen Style! “Conventional banks ask their clients to come to their office. It’s a terrifying place for the poor and illiterate. … The entire Grameen Bank system runs on the principle that people should not come to the bank, the bank should go to the people. … If any staff member is seen in the office, it should be taken as a violation of the rules of the Grameen Bank. … It is essential that [those setting up a new village Branch] have no office and no place to stay. The reason is to make us as different as possible from government officials .” Source: Muhammad Yunus, Banker to the Poor
  30. 30. “ You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” Gandhi
  31. 31. “ It’s alwa y s showtime.” —David D’Alessandro, Career Warfare
  32. 32. You = Your calendar * *Calendars never lie
  33. 33. All we have is our time. The way we spend our time is our priorities, is our “strategy.” Your calendar knows what you really care about. Do you?
  34. 34. “… a blinding flash of the obvious” —Manny Garcia
  35. 35. “ All this” [this little riff] is indeed, as seminar participant and leading Burger King franchisee Many Garcia once said to me, “obvious.” * But observation over four decades ** suggests that amidst the hubbub and travails of a typical day’s work, the so-called obvious is often-usually left unattended. For perfectly good reasons, another week passes without a visit to our equivalent of the Starbucks shops or HP R&D labs, without the equivalent to Hank Paulsen’s “How ya doin’?” call to a key customer. My [Tom Peters] Job One in life? Remind busy folks of the obvious! * Manny Garcia/1983: “Tom, I hope you won’t be insulted when I say this was the best seminar I’ve ever been to—and it was a blinding flash of the obvious.” ** I had two commanding officers during my two Vietnam tours in U.S. Naval Mobile Construction Battalion NINE. One was a Shultz look-alike—instinctively in the field. The other was an in the office “leader.” The one produced. The other didn’t. At age 24 I learned an incredible life lesson, though I couldn’t describe it well until tripping over HP’s MBWA/Managing By Wandering Around.
  36. 36. The “XF-50”: 50 Ways to Enhance Cross-Functional Effectiveness and Deliver Speed, “Service Excellence” and “Value-added Customer ‘Solutions’”
  37. 37. A 2007 letter from John Hennessy, president of Stanford University, to alumni laid out his long-term “vision” for that esteemed institution. The core of the vision’s promise was more multi-disciplinary research , aimed at solving some of the world’s complex systemic problems. The chief of GlaxoSmithKline , a few years ago, announced a “revolutionary” new drug discovery process—human-scale centers of interdisciplinary excellence, called Centers of Excellence in Drug Discovery . (It worked.) Likewise, amidst a study of organization effectiveness in the oil industry’s exploration sector, I came across a particularly successful firm—one key to that success was their physical and organization al mingling of formerly warring (two sets of prima donnas) geologists and geophysicists .
  38. 38. The cover story in Dartmouth Medicine , the Dartmouth med school magazine, featured a “revolutionary” approach, “microsystems,” as “the big idea that [might] save U.S. healthcare.” The nub is providing successful patient outcomes in hospitals by forming multi-function patient-care teams , including docs, nurses, labtechs and others. (“Co-operating doc” may top the oxymoron scale.) One of the central responses to 911 is an effort to get intelligence services , home to some of the world’s most viscous turf wars, talking to one another—we may have seen some of the fruits of that effort in the recently released National Intelligence Estimate . And in the military, inter-service co-operation has increased by an order of magnitude since Gulf War One —some of the services’ communication systems can actually be linked to those of other services, a miracle the equal of the Christmas miracle in my book!
  39. 39. “ TAKE THIS QUICK QUIZ : Who manages more things at once? Who puts more effort into their appearance? Who usually takes care of the details? Who finds it easier to meet new people? Who asks more questions in a conversation? Who is a better listener? Who has more interest in communication skills? Who is more inclined to get involved? Who encourages harmony and agreement? Who has better intuition? Who works with a longer ‘to do’ list? Who enjoys a recap to the day’s events? Who is better at keeping in touch with others?” Source: Selling Is a Woman’s Game: 15 Powerful Reasons Why Women Can Outsell Men , Nicki Joy & Susan Kane-Benson
  40. 40. 1. It’s our organization to make work—or not. It’s not “them,” the outside world that’s the problem. The enemy is us. Period. 2. Friction-free! Dump 90% of “middle managers”—most are advertent or inadvertent “power freaks.” We are all—every one of us—in the Friction Removal Business, one moment at a time, now and forevermore. 3. No “stovepipes”! “Stove-piping,” “Silo-ing” is an Automatic Firing Offense . Period. No appeals. (Within the limits of civility, somewhat “public” firings are not out of the question—that is, make one and all aware why the axe fell.) 4. Everything on the Web. This helps. A lot. (“Everything” = Big word.) 5. Open access. All available to all. Transparency, beyond a level that’s “sensible,” is a de facto imperative in a Burn-the-Silos strategy. 6. Project managers rule!! Project managers running XF (cross-functional) projects are the Elite of the organization, and seen as such and treated as such. (The likes of construction companies have practiced this more or less forever.) 7. “Value-added Proposition” = Application of integrated resources. (From the entire supply-chain.) To deliver on our emergent business raison d’etre, and compete with the likes of our Chinese and Indian brethren, we must co-operate with anybody and everybody “24/7.” IBM, UPS and many, many others are selling far more than a product or service that works—the new “it” is pure and simple a product of XF co-operation; “the product is the co-operation” is not much of a stretch.
  41. 41. X =XFX* * Excellence = Cross-functional Excellence
  42. 42. 8. “XF work” is the direct work of leaders! 9. “Integrated solutions” = Our “Culture.” (Therefore: XF = Our culture.) 10. Partner with “best-in-class” only. Their pursuit of Excellence helps us get beyond petty bickering. An all-star team has little time for anything other than delivering on the (big) Client promise. 11. All functions are created equal! All functions contribute equally! All = All. 12. All functions are “PSFs,” Professional Service Firms. “Professionalism” is the watchword—and true Professionalism rise above turf wars. You are your projects, your legacy is your projects—and the legacy will be skimpy indeed unless you pass, with flying colors, the “works well with others” exam! 13. We are all in sales! We all (a-l-l) “sell” those Integrated Client Solutions. Good salespeople don’t blame others for screw-ups—the Client doesn’t care. Good salespeople are “quarterbacks” who make the system work-deliver. 14. We all invest in “wiring” the Client organization—we develop comprehensive relationships in every part (function, level) of the Client’s organization. We pay special attention to the so-called “lower levels,” short on glamour, long on the ability to make things happen at the “coalface.” 15. We all “live the Brand”—which is Delivery of Matchless Integrated Solutions which transform the Client’s organization. To “live the brand” is to become a raving fan of XF co-operation.
  43. 43. C(I)>C(E)* * Internal customer relations are perhaps more important than external relationships. That is, if you Internal Relationships are excellent, you’ll have your whole company working for you to get your jobs to the head of the queue.
  44. 44. 16. We use the word “partner” until we want to barf! (Words matter! A lot!) 17. We use the word “team” until we want to barf. (Words matter! A lot!) 18. We use the word “us” until we want to barf. (Words matter! A lot!) 19. We obsessively seek Inclusion—and abhor exclusion. We want more people from more places (internal, external—the whole “supply chain”) aboard in order to maximize systemic benefits. 20. Buttons & Badges matter—we work relentlessly at team (XF team) identity and solidarity. (“Corny”? Get over it.) 21. All (almost all) rewards are team rewards. 22. We keep base pay rather low—and give whopping bonuses for excellent team delivery of “seriously cool” cross-functional Client benefits. 23. WE NEVER BLAME OTHER PARTS OF THE ORGANIZATION FOR SCREWUPS . 24. WE TAKE THE HEAT—THE WHOLE TEAM. (For anything and everything.) (Losing, like winning, is a team affair.) 25. “BLAMING” IS AN AUTOMATIC FIRING OFFENSE. 26. “Women rule.” Women are simply better at the XF communications stuff—less power obsessed, less hierarchically inclined, more group-team oriented.
  45. 45. 27. Every member of our team is an honored contributor. “XF project Excellence” is an “all hands” affair. 28. We are our XF Teams! XF project teams are how we get things done. 29. “Wow Projects” rule, large or small—Wow projects demand by definition XF Excellence. 30. We routinely attempt to unearth and then reward “small gestures” of XF co-operation. 31. We invite Functional Bigwigs to our XF project team reviews. 32. We insist on Client team participation—from all functions of the Client organization. 33. An “Open talent market” helps make the projects “silo-free.” People want in on the project because of the opportunity to do something memorable—no one will tolerate delays based on traditional functional squabbling. 34. Flat! Flat = Flattened Silos. Flat = Excellence based on XF project outcomes, not power-hoarding within functional boundaries. 35. New “C-level”? We more or less need a “C-level” job titled Chief Bullshit Removal Officer. That is, some kind of formal watchdog whose role in life is to make cross-functionality work, and I.D. those who don’t get with the program. 36. Huge (H-U-G-E) co-operation bonuses. Senior team members who conspicuously shine in the “working together” bit are rewarded Big Time. (A million bucks in one case I know—and a non-cooperating very senior was sacked.)
  46. 46. James Robinson III: $500K (on the spot, collaboration) Alan Puckett: Fire the best! (failure to collaborate)
  47. 47. 37. Get physical!! “Co-location” is the most powerful “culture changer. Physical X-functional proximity is almost a guarantee (yup!) of remarkably improved co-operation—to aid this one needs flexible workspaces that can be mobilized for a team in a flash. 38. Ad hoc. To improve the new “X-functional Culture,” little XF teams should be formed on the spot to deal with an urgent issue—they may live for but ten days, but it helps the XF habit, making it normal to be “working the XF way.” 39. “Deep dip.” Dive three levels down in the organization to fill a senior role with some one who has been pro-active on the XF dimension. 40. Formal evaluations. Everyone, starting with the receptionist, should have an important XF rating component in their evaluation. 41. Demand XF experience for, especially, senior jobs. The military requires all would-be generals and admirals to have served a full tour in a job whose only goals were cross-functional. Great idea! 42. Early project “management” experience. Within days, literally, of coming aboard folks should be “running” some bit of a project, working with folks from other functions—hence, “all this” becomes as natural as breathing. 43. “Get ’em out with the customer.” Rarely does the accountant or bench scientist call one the customer. Reverse that. Give everyone more or less regular “customer-facing experiences.” One learns quickly that the customer is not interested in our in-house turf battles!
  48. 48. 44. Put “it” on the–every agenda. XF “issues to be resolved” should be on every agenda—morning project team review, weekly exec team meeting, etc. A “next step” within 24 hours (4?) ought to be part of the resolution. 45. XF “honest broker” or ombudsman. The ombudsman examines XF “friction events” and acts as Conflict Resolution Counselor. (Perhaps a formal conflict resolution agreement?) 46. Lock it in! XF co-operation, central to any value-added mission, should be an explicit part of the “Vision Statement.” 47. Promotions. Every promotion, no exceptions, should put XF Excellence in the top 5 (3?) evaluation criteria. 48. Pick partners based on their “co-operation proclivity.” Everyone must be on board if “this thing” is going to work; hence every vendor, among others, should be formally evaluated on their commitment to XF transparency—e.g., can we access anyone at any level in any function of their organization without bureaucratic barriers? 49. Fire vendors who don’t “get it”—more than “get it,” welcome “it” with open arms.” 50. Jaw. Jaw. Jaw. Talk XF cooperation-value-added at every opportunity. Become a relentless bore! 51. Excellence! There is a state of XF Excellence per se. Talk about it. Pursue it. Aspire to nothing less.
  49. 49. X =XFX* * Excellence = Cross-functional Excellence
  50. 50. Getting Things Done … The Power & Implementation34.
  51. 51. In 1977 I submitted what my faculty advisor at Stanford called the first business school doctoral thesis, anywhere, on the topic of implementation per se. If true, it’s an outrage—and I’d guess it’s at least close to true. Our B-schools teach strategy and marketing and finance—anything one can quantify, in other words. The “soft stuff,” the “people stuff,” the “getting it done” part are absolutely-unequivocally A.W.O.L. Well, I’m still doin’ in 2008 what I was doin’ in 1977—causing as much fuss as I can about the issue of “getting’ it done.” In my current Master Presentation I have a little list, a couple of years old, on the subject of “power and implementation.” You’ll find it on the following slides …..
  52. 52. *Send “Thank You” notes! It’s (always) “all about relationships.” And at the Heart of Effective Relationships is … APPRECIATION. (Oh yeah: Never, ever forget a birthday of a co-worker.) *Bring donuts! “Small” gestures of appreciation (on a rainy day, after a long day’s work the day before) are VBDs … Very Big Deals. *Make the call! One short, hard-to-make call today can avert a relationship crisis that could bring you down six months from now. *Remember: There are no “little gestures” of kindness. As boss, stopping by someone’s cube … for 30 seconds … to inquire about their sick parent will be remembered for … 10 years . (Trust me.) *Make eye contact! No big deal? Wrong! “It” is all about … Connection! Paying attention! Being there … in the Moment … Present. So, work on your eye contact, your Intent to Connect. *Smile! Or, rather: SMILE. Rule: Smiles beget smiles. Frowns beget frowns. Rule: WORK ON THIS. *Smile! (If it kills you.) Energy & enthusiasm & passion engender energy-enthusiasm-passion in those we work with.
  53. 53. “ Find something small that you can turn around. If you’re on a 9-game losing streak, you need to start with one great inning.” —Rudy G
  54. 54. *It’s all … RELATIONSHIPS. Remember: Business is a relationships business. (Period.) We’re all in sales! (Period.) Connecting! Making our case! Following up! Networking! “Relationships” are what we “do.” *You = Your Calendar. Your true priorities are “given away” by your calendar. YOUR CALENDAR NEVER LIES. What are you truly spending your time on? Are you distracted? Focused? *What’s in a number? EVERYTHING! While we all “do a hundred things,” we may not/should not/cannot have more than 2 (or 3) true “strategic” priorities at any point in time. BELIEVE IT. *She (he) who is best prepared wins! Out study, out-read, out-research the competition. Know more (lots more!) than “the person on the other side of the table.” *“Excellence” is the Ultimate Cool Idea. The very idea of “pursuing excellence” is a turn on—for you and me as well as those we work with. (And, I find to my dismay, it’s surprisingly rare.) *Think WOW! Language matters! “Hot” words generate a Hot Team. Watch your language! *Take a break! We need all the creativity we can muster these days. So close your office door and do 5 (FIVE) minutes of breathing or yoga; get a bag lunch today and eat it in the park.
  55. 55. *You are the boss! Old ideas of “lifetime employment” at one company (maybe where Dad/Mom worked) are gone. No matter what your current status, think of your self as CEO of Brand Me, Inc. We are all Small Business Owners … of our own careers. *Do something in … the next half hour! Don’t let yourself get stuck! There is … ALWAYS … something little you can start/do in the next thirty minutes to make a wee, concrete step forward with a problem-opportunity . *Test it! NOW! We call this the “Quick Prototype Attitude.” One of life’s, especially business life’s, biggest problems is: “Too much ‘talk’, too little ‘do’.” If you’ve got a Cool Idea, don’t sit on it or research it to death. Grab a pal, an empty conference, and start laying out a little model. That is, begin the process of transforming the Idea to Action … ASAP. Incidentally, testing something quarter-baked in an approximation of the real world is the quickest way to learn. *Expand your horizons. Routinely reach out beyond your comfort zone. TAKE A FREAK TO LUNCH TOMORROW! Call somebody interesting “you’ve been meaning to get in touch with;” invite them to lunch tomorrow. (Lunch with “the same ole gang means nothing new learned. And that’s a guarantee.) (Remember: Discomfort = Growth.) *Build a Web site. The Web is ubiquitous. Play with it! Be a presence! Start You.com … ASAP!
  56. 56. *Spread the credit! Don’t build monuments to yourself, build them to others—those whose contributions we wholeheartedly acknowledge will literally follow us into machine gun fire! *Follow Tom’s patented VFCJ strategy! VFCJ = Volunteer For Crappy Jobs. That is, volunteer for the crummy little assignment nobody else wants, but will give you a chance to (1) be on your own, (2) express your creativity, and (3) make a noticeable mark when it turns out “Wow.” *VOLUNTEER! Life’s a maze, and you never know what’s connected to what. (Six degrees of separation, and all that.) So volunteer for that Community Center fund raising drive, even though you’re busy as all get out. You might end up working side-by-side with the president of a big company who’s looking for an enthusiast like you, or someone wealthy who might be interested in investing in the small business you dream of starting. *Join Toastmasters! You don’t need to try and match Ronald Reagan’s speaking skills, but you do need to be able to “speak your piece” with comfort, confidence and authority. Organizations like Toastmasters can help … enormously. *Dress for success! This one is old as the hills and I hate it!! But it’s true. FIRST IMPRESSIONS DO MATTER. (A lot!!!)
  57. 57. *Follow the Gospel of “Experience Marketing” in all you do. The shrewdest marketers today tell us that selling a “product” or “service” is not enough in a crowded marketplace for everything. Every interaction must be reframed as a … Seriously Cool Experience. That includes the “little” 15-minute presentation you are giving to your 4 peers tomorrow. *Think of your resume as an Annual Report on Brand Me Inc. It’s not about keeping your resume “updated.” It is about having a Super-cool Annual Report. (Tom Peters Inc 2004.) What are your “stunning” accomplishments that you can add to that Report each 6 months, or at the most annually? *Build a Great Team … even if you are not boss. Best roster wins, right? So, work on your roster. Meet someone new at Church or your kid’s birthday party? Add them to your team (Team Tom); you never know when they might be able to assist you or give you ideas or support for something you are working on. * She or he who has the Fattest & and Best-managed Rolodex wins. Your Rolodex is your most cherished possession! Have you added 3 names to it in the last 2 weeks? Have you renewed acquaintance (email, lunch, gym date) with 3 people in your Rolodex in the last month? “MANAGE” YOUR ROLODEX!
  58. 58. *Start your own business! Sure that’s radical. But people are doing it—especially women—by the millions. Let the idea percolate. Chat about it, perhaps, with pals. Start a file folder or three on things you Truly Care About … that just might be the basis for Cool Self-employment. *There’s nothing cooler than an Angry Customer! The most loyal customers are ones who had a problem with us … and then marveled when we went the Extra Ten Miles to fix it! Business opportunity No. 1 = Irate customers converted into fans. So … are you on the prowl for customer problems to fix? *All “marketing” is Relationship Marketing. In business, profit is a byproduct of “bringing ’em back.” Thus, systematic and intense and repeated Follow-up and After-sales Service and Scintillating New Hooks are of the utmost importance.
  59. 59. *BRANDING ain’t just for Big Dudes. This may well be Business Mistake No. 1 … the idea that “branding” is only for the likes of Coke and Sony and Nike. Baloney! Branding applies as much for the one-person accountancy run out of a spare bedroom as it does for Procter & Gamble. *Credibility! In the end … Character Matters Most. Does he/she give their word, and then stick to it … come hell & high water? Can you rely on Her/Him in a pinch? Does she/he … CARE? *Grace. Is it “a pleasure to do business with you”? Is it a pleasure to “be a member of your team”?
  60. 60. Three for the Ages GETTING TO YES … Roger Fisher, William Ury, Bruce Patton LEARNED OPTIMISM … Martin Seligman CRUCIAL CONFRONTATIONS … Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan, Al Switzler
  61. 61. The Checklist: The Power of a “Blinding Flash of the Obvious”! Tom Peters/11 December 2007
  62. 62. Hospital (patient safety) problems are a bad joke—killing us in America alone at a rate far in excess of 100,000 per year. In the home [U.S.] of the world’s sexiest acute-care equipment, often the fix is as lowtech as it gets. E.g., concocting and then religiously using (pilot-like) the humble paper checklist. The idea came to Johns Hopkins doc Peter Pronovost. In short, it has revolutionary impact, as some of the figures in this brief presentation suggest. Humans being humans, and brittle professionals (docs) being brittle professionals, the widespread implementation has been far slower than it needs to be or ought to be. But my purpose here is to endorse the simple ideas—a paper checklist in 2008—that can change the world.
  63. 63. 90K in ICU on any given day 178 steps/day 50% “serious complication” Source: Atul Gawande, “The Checklist” ( New Yorker , 1210.07)
  64. 64. **Peter Pronovost, Johns Hopkins, 2001 **Checklist, line infections **1/3 rd at least one error **Nurses/permission to stop procedure **1 year/10-day line-infection rate: 11% to 0% (43 infections, 8 deaths, $2M saved) Source: Atul Gawande, “The Checklist” ( New Yorker , 1210.07)
  65. 65. **Docs, nurses make own checklists on whatever process-procedure they choose **Within weeks , average stay in ICU down 50% Source: Atul Gawande, “The Checklist” (New Yorker, 1210.07)
  66. 66. **Replicate in Inner City Detroit (resource strapped—$$$, staff cut 1/3 rd , poorest patients in USA) **Nurses QB **Project manager **Exec involvement (help with “little things”—it’s all “little things”) **Blues, small bonuses for participating **6 months, 66% decrease in infection rate; USA: bottom 25% to top 10% Source: Atul Gawande, “The Checklist” ( New Yorker , 1210.07)
  67. 67. “ [Pronovost] is focused on work that is not normally considered a significant contribution in academic medicine. As a result, few others are venturing to extend his achievements. Yet his work has already saved more lives than that of any laboratory scientist in the last decade .” —Atul Gawande, “The Checklist” (New Yorker, 1210.07)
  68. 68. “ Beware of the tyranny of making Small Changes to S mall Things. Rather, make Bi g Changes to Bi g Things.” —Roger Enrico, former Chairman, PepsiCo
  69. 69. “ Beware of the tyranny of making S mall Changes to S mall Things. Rather, make Big Changes to Big Things … using Small, Almost Invisible Levers with Bi g S y stemic Im p act .” —TP
  70. 70. Charlie Wilson’s War
  71. 71. Over Christmas [2007] I read George Crile’s Charlie Wilson’s War , the tale of the astonishingly critical role of one determined, mildly deranged Congressman in engineering the defeat of the Soviets in Afghanistan, hence hastening immeasurably the subsequent implosion of the Evil Empire, our undisputed nemesis for the first half century of my life. I still am virtually unable to believe we escaped with our lives. I can state with some certainty that it was the most incredible non-fiction story I have ever (!!) read. Last night [January 2008] I saw the movie—it was, for me, wonderful, though a pale reproduction of the full 550-page treatment by Crile. Turning to the practicalities of your and my day to day professional affairs, the story was peppered with de facto analyses of how Charlie did his amazing thing. He is indeed “larger than life,” and yet his practical “can do” tactics have a lot to teach all of us. As I imagine it, 100% of the readers of this Blog are Professional Change Agents, fighting wars against the Bureaucratic Evil Empires which impede success. So what follows is rather (!) lengthy for a Blogpost, but ridiculously short considering the importance of the subject matter.
  72. 72. 1. Make friends! And then more friends! And then more friends! “The way things normally work, if you’re not Jewish you don’t get into the Jewish caucus, but Charlie did. And if you’re not black you don’t get into the black caucus. But Charlie plays poker with the black caucus; they had a game, and he’s the only white guy in it. The House, like any human institution, is moved by friendships, and no matter what people might think about Wilson’s antics, they tend to like him and enjoy his company.” Likewise Wilson’s CIA partner, Gust Avarkotos, made friends among the black members of the CIA, becoming the first white guy to win their informal “Brown Bomber Award” (“We want to give this award to the blackest m%^&*$f*$#@& of all.”) Bottom line: Your power is directly proportional to the breadth and depth of your Rolodex. Quantity counts almost as much as quantity—you never know from whom you will need a “little” special service. “She/he who has developed the best network of allies wins” is essentially a truism—though not acknowledged by the majority of us and the overwhelmingly useless MBA programs which spawned many of us.
  73. 73. 2. Make friends by the bushel with those several levels down and with various disenfranchised groups. Gust Avarkotos’ strategy: “He had become something of a legend with these people who manned the underbelly of the Agency [CIA].” E.g., Gust apparently knew every executive secretary by name—and had helped many of them out with personal or professional problems. You could almost say he had the “invisible 95%” of the Agency working for him which allowed him to make incredible things happen despite furious resistance from the top of a very rigid organization. I have spoken and Blogged on this topic before, arguing among other things that the key to sales success is “wiring” the client organization 3 or 4 levels down—where the real work gets done. Most would agree perhaps—but damn few make it the obsession it needs to be to foster success. One added (big) benefit is that “those folks” are seldom recognized, and thence the “investment” will likely yield long-lasting, not transient, rewards. 3. Carefully manage the BOF/Balance Of Favors. Practice potlatch—giving so much help to so many people on so many occasions (overkill!) that there is no issue about their supporting you when the time comes to call in the chits. “Wilson made it easy for his colleagues to come to him, always gracious, almost always helpful.” Some would argue, and I think I’d agree, that conscious management of one’s “balance of favors” (owed and due) is a very sensible thing to do in a pretty organized fashion.
  74. 74. 4. Follow the money! “Anybody with a brain can figure out that if they can get on the Defense subcommittee, that’s where they ought to be—because that’s where the money is.” Getting near the heart of fiscal processes offers innumerable opportunities to effectively take control of a system—as long as you are willing to invest in the details that lead to Absolute Mastery of the topic. From the outside looking in, this is another big argument for nurturing relationships a few levels down in the organization—in this case the financial organization. 5. Network! Network! Network! Potential links of great value will neither be possible nor obvious until the network is very dense. The odds of useful connections occurring is a pure Numbers Game. The more hyperlinks you have, the higher the odds of making the right connection. 6. Seek unlikely, even unwholesome allies, or at least don’t rule them out. Find the right path (often $$$$) and the most bitter of rivals will make common cause relative to some key link in the chain.
  75. 75. 7. Found material. Don’t re-invent the wheel. It costs too much, takes to much time, and requires too much bureaucratic hassle. Again and again Wilson took advantage of stuff, such as materials, that was immediately available for use—rather than waiting an eternity for the “perfect” solution. 8. Found material II (People): Find disrespected oddball groups that have done exciting work but are not recognized. (E.g., in Wilson’s case, a band of crazies in the Pentagon’s lightly regarded Weapons Upgrade Program.) 9. Real, Visible passion! “Authenticity” matters—especially in highly bureaucratic environments. Passion also suggests annoying “staying power”—“I might as well support him, he’s not going away and he’ll hound me ’til hell freezes over.”
  76. 76. 10. Graphic evidence of the source of your passion. Charlie Wilson had one main hurdle to his plan—a crusty old cynic. CW took him to the astounding Afghan refugee camps—and made a fast and emotional friend of the cause in the space of an afternoon. If you’ve got a cause, you usually want to fix something that is a mess—figure out a way to expose would be converts to startling, live demos of the problem, replete with testimony from those who are on the losing end of things. Wilson subsequently did such things as creating a little program to treat horrid medical problems in the U.S.—suddenly the demo was next door! (This works for a horrid bureaucratic process that is alienating us from our customers almost as much as in the Wilson case.) Hint: The demo must be … graphic!) 11. Make it personal. On every visit to the refugee camps, Wilson donated blood on the spot. 12. Enthusiasm. Charlie and Gust oozed it from every pore re Afghanistan.
  77. 77. 13. Showmanship. This ( any implementation) is a theatrical production, just like political campaigns—every project needs a showman obsessed with creating and moving forward the compelling “story line.” 14. Visible momentum! The smell of action must be in the air. Think of it as “momentum management”—an aspect of the showmanship theme. 15. Perception is … always … everything. Play head games with the bad guys. The goal was to create a Vietnam-like sense of hopelessness among the Soviets. The bark was worse than the bite—but demoralization, even in a totalitarian state, is eventually decisive. Wear the buggers out by inducing hopelessness (“We don’t need this.”) 16. Goal is clear and unequivocal and inspiring … Victory. Gust: “It wasn’t a defeatist attitude [at the CIA], it was positive—making the enemy [Soviets] hemorrhage. But I don’t play ball that way. It’s either black or white, win or lose. I don’t go for a tie.” (Mirrors one biographers conclusion about Lord Nelson’s #1 differentiating attribute: “[Other] admirals were more frightened of losing than anxious to win.”)
  78. 78. 17. Repeat: The goal is noble but “the work” is … Relationships & Networking & Politics. Even if the issue is deeply technical, the “implementation bit” (that all important “last 98%”) is all about … politics-relationships. 18. Recruit a politics-networking maestro. Charlie Wilson had this part down, and he needed help with the doing. If you are the doer, then you must find the politician-networker. They are a special breed—and worth as much as the doer. (The legendary community organizer Saul Alinsky pointed out the difference between “organizers” and “leaders.” Leaders are the visible ones, out there giving the speeches and manning the picket lines. The largely invisible organizer worries about recruiting the folks who will be on that picket line, settling disputes about who goes where—and procuring the busses to get the picketers to the right place at the right time with the necessary signs and bullhorns. I firmly believe that Alinsky’s Rules For Radicals is the best “project management” manual ever written.)
  79. 79. 18. Recruit a politics-networking maestro. Charlie Wilson had this part down, and he needed help with the doing. If you are the doer, then you must find the politician-networker. They are a special breed—and worth as much as the doer. (The legendary community organizer Saul Alinsky pointed out the difference between “organizers” and “leaders.” Leaders are the visible ones, out there giving the speeches and manning the picket lines. The largely invisible organizer worries about recruiting the folks who will be on that picket line, settling disputes about who goes where—and procuring the busses to get the picketers to the right place at the right time with the necessary signs and bullhorns. I firmly believe that Alinsky’s Rules For Radicals is the best “project management” manual ever written.)
  80. 80. 19. Think QQ/Quintessential Quartet . Passion poobah and chief storyteller. Anal doer. Financier. Networker-political master-recruiter-in-chief. 20. When a project is unusual-risky, never, ever waste time or capital going go “up the chain of command.” Risk aversion rises as one nears the top … everywhere. Constantly devise and try and discard and re-revise end runs that build the network, add to knowledge, and create “small wins” that start the process mushrooming. Be polite to your boss (Gust wasn’t, there are exceptions to every rule), but do not waste time on him! 21. Demo! Demo! Demo! Get some little thing done no matter how grand the goal—you need visual evidence of hope.
  81. 81. 22. Demo redux: Plant a field of seeds, most will die, a few will grow—and pay special attention to the wildflowers. Fill the air with possibility, energy, action—no matter that 96.3% will come to naught. 23. Take chances on unusual talent, regardless of formal rank. Mike Vickers, a junior (GS-11) officer was given enormous responsibility because of his demonstrated skills and tenacity and creativity. 24. Recruit peculiar talent with no investment in conventional solutions. Most of what you do won’t work—don’t spend ages trying to stuff square pegs in round holes. Cultivate a Special Network of Weirdos, often junior, who bring no baggage to the party.
  82. 82. 25. Create a small, insanely committed “band of brothers” to act as mostly invisible orchestrators. When all was said and done, Gust Avarkotos and his tiny (never more than a half dozen) nerve center in the CIA never got even a smidgen of recognition for what was the Agency’s biggest success. But his little team did the work of hundreds—in a true revolutionary mission, the core group must number <10. I’ve long used the (stolen from Lockheed) term “skunkworks” to describe such small bands of insanely determined renegades. 26. The “Band of Brothers”-“Skunkworks” must be physically separated from top management . In Gust’s case it was just a few floors of insulation—but even that is essential.
  83. 83. 27. Think, subconsciously … long haul. A small act of recognition toward a Major in an ally’s military pays off Big Time 15 years later when he is Chief of Staff of the Army—one never knows, but stitch enough of these events together, and the odds of one paying off go waaaaay up. That is, passion for today’s action is paramount—but always, always, always think consciously about … Network Investment. (Remember, R.O.I.R.—return On Investment in Relationships.) 28. K.I.S.S. Our Afghan allies drove the Soviets crazy less with “big weapons” (oh so difficult for an irregular program to acquire) than with an endless and ever-varying stream of “simple” (cheap, reliable, easy to train, easy to transport) weapons such as bicycle bombs (shades of our problems in Iraq).
  84. 84. 29. Plan for the “real world.” Mike Vickers was a genius at understanding the way things really were in the field—his logistics programs reflected that. No pie-in-the-sky assumptions! 30. Cut red tape. “What we did in one month with Charlie would have taken us nine years to accomplish.” (Approval process in Congress, 8 days for 9 month procedure to get $$ transferred) My longtime definition: Boss = Chief hurdle remover. Which (again) means the boss must be master of the intricacies of the political process. A little known congressman, Tom DeLay became one of the most powerful people in America by total mastery of the political rules. In a business project, this means, say, total mastery of the client’s purchasing process—including total comprehension of the power politics going on at the moment. 31. Don’t document it! Charlie Wilson and Gust Avarkotos cut corners—to succeed against the powers that be you will to. Keep documentation to a minimum—watch your emails!!
  85. 85. 32. Luck!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Never deny the reality of lucky (or unlucky) breaks; realizing that allows you to “stay in the game,” playing hand after hand until your cards come in—or the time comes to fold.
  86. 86. 33. The Game Ain’t Over Until the Fat Lady Sings. I call them the “yoiks,” which actually stands for un-intended consequences. After the Russians had withdrawn from Afghanistan, the U.S. once again returned to benign neglect—the result was, indirectly, 9-11 orchestrated from Afghanistan by some of the people we had supported a decade earlier. As to not finishing the chore, Charlie Wilson said that the defeat of the Soviets in Afghanistan, their first in the Cold War and a spur to the unraveling of the Evil Empire, was a “glorious accomplishment that changed the world. And then we f&*^ed up the end game.” I’m with Wilson, regardless of today’s threats; as one who lived through the entire Cold War, we are indeed now free of the not particularly low odds threat of planetary extinction. (See my Post of 1231.07 on Lieutenant Colonel Stanislav Petrov and the immanent end of the world on 26 September 1983.) But that’s not the point either—instead it is the more general axiom that you never know what new can of worms you are opening—which to me, of course, makes the linear, logical approach to planning and life so laughable. Well, I guess we all need our illusions, and if plans can proved such comfort, ridiculous as they are, it’s fine by me.
  87. 87. Concluding reminder: Any project worth doing is worth doing because in some small or large way it challenges “the way we do things around here.” Moreover, it is a given bosses are primarily hired to be cops who make sure that we do things “the way we do things around here.” I’d guess that 98% of projects fail in terms of even near-total implementation. And 98% of the 98% failures are the results of lousy political and networking skills—not selection of the wrong project management software package. Hence “the work” of projects is the political implementation of ideas and processes which necessarily engender emotional resistance by the powers that be. We who would change things are insurgents. Charlie and Gust were insurgents who fought, for years, an inch at a time through the corridors of power from Congress to the CIA headquarters in Langley VA to the presidential palaces in Pakistan and Egypt—and even Israel.
  88. 88. Presentation Excellence: The PresX56
  89. 89. A very senior executive [and friend] at an enormous, extremely technical company took me by complete surprise during an after-dinner conversation. He said that the #1 thing that tripped up the forward career progress of many of his senior guys was mediocre presentation skills. Well, I’m not about to write a book on the topic, no matter the 2,500+ presentations under my belt. But that evening he laid out his “top 10” messages for presenter. I demurred—but with my interest stirred I took a swing the next morning. Alas, and no surprise, my “top 10” soon became a “{top 50” and change. It is offered herewith.
  90. 90. Life = Talk Listen
  91. 91. A It’s true, in private and public life what we “do” is talk and listen. I talk for a living. Barbara listens for a living (more or less). It also occurred, no surprise at all, that Talkin’ and Listenin’ are completely absent from the B-school course list. What follows, no grand effort to be sure, is some ideas about professional talking (presenting) and professional listening (interviewing). There is no genius herein … but I do genuinely believe the topics should be staples of education from about age 12—at the latest. (I actually pondered a book for a while. I was delighted by its prospective title: Talk. Listen. )
  92. 92. Life = Talk Listen
  93. 93. “ The problem with communication ...is the ILLUSION that it has been accomplished.” — George Bernard Shaw
  94. 94. Presentation Excellence 1. Total commitment to the Problem/Project/Outcome 2. A compelling “Story line”/“Plot” 3. Enough data to sink a tanker (98% in reserve) 4. Know the data from memory; ability to manipulate the data in your head 5. Great Stories/Illustrations/Vignettes 6. Superb “political antennae” (you must “play the room” like a Virtuoso and be hyper-attentive to the likes of Body Language) 7. By hook or by crook … CONNECT 7A. CONNECT! CONNECT! CONNECT! 8. Punch line/Plot Outline/WOW/Surprise in first one to two minutes
  95. 95. Joe Kramer, welder: “When my mother’s toaster went on the fritz, I asked myself, ‘If I were that toaster and didn’t work, what would be wrong with me?’ ” —Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience , on “empathetic identification” * (Joe: “burdens” vs “opportunities” to master complex problems) (*BC vs JK)
  96. 96. Presentation Excellence 9. Once you’ve “won” … stop pushing (don’t “rub it in”) 10. Be “in command” but don’t “show off” (if you’re brilliant they’ll figure it out for themselves) 11. Pay attention to the Senior Person present, but not too much (don’t look like/act like/be a “suck up”) 12. Brief the hell out of your “champions” before the presentation; insist that they make changes/fine tune ... they must “own” the outcome before the fact! 13. Don’t try to “score off” your detractors … be especially courteous to them (even if/especially if they’re jerks) 14. Adjust as you go: LET THE GROUP ARRIVE AT “YOUR” CONCLUSION! THEY MUST OWN IT (“I knew that”) IN THE END!
  97. 97. Presentation Excellence 15. No more than THREE key points! Come at them in several different ways. 16. No more than ONE point per slide! 17. Slides: NO CLUTTER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (no wee print/ charts/graphs) 18. Slides: Good quotes from the field. (Remember you’re “telling a story”) 19. Be aware of differing cognitive styles, especially M-F 20. There must be “surprise” … some key facts that are not commonly known/are counter-intuitive (no reason to do the presentation in the first place if there are no Surprises) 21. Summarize the argument/story from time to time 22. Include an Action Agenda that involves some small items that will be started/accomplished in the next 72 HOURS (this ices commitment/practicality)
  98. 98. Presentation Excellence 23. If you don’t know something … ADMIT IT! (this is actually a good thing—as opposed to appearing as a “know it all”) 24. ASK FOR THE SALE! (Remember to be a “closer”) 25. This is War (a war for Hearts & Mind), but never forget that you are the Supplicant! 26. Data are imperative, but also play to Emotion. 27. Consider bringing along a “customer” (internal or perhaps external) for support 28. Be precisely clear where/when you intend to prototype … and that the prototype guinea pig is lined up (better yet, do the first, at least partial, prototype before the presentation) 29. Compromise but don’t yield! (Lost battles are normal, no matter how agonizing) 30. Assume that you may be cut off at any moment, and be prepared to give on the spot a compelling 30-second to one- minute (no longer!) Brilliant Summary including Sales Pitch
  99. 99. Presentation Excellence 31. Follow the Law of Recency: Make sure that you have been in the field with the key “operating” players more recently than anyone in the room 32. Make it clear that you’ve done a Staggering Amount of Homework, even though you are exhibiting but a tiny fraction … allude to the tons of research that are available if desired by participants; offer deeper one-on-one briefings if desired 33. SMILE! RELAX (to a point) (fake it if necessary) (“up tight” is disastrous) (remember you are doing them a favor by sharing this Compelling Opportunity!) 34. EYE CONTACT!!!!!!! 35. Be shrewd: Override some interruptions; be attentive to others (distraction is okay and normal … within limits!) 36. Becoming an Excellent Presenter is as tough as becoming a great baseball pitcher. THIS IS IMPORTANT … and Presentation Excellence is never accidental! (Work your buns off!)
  100. 100. “ The only reason to give a speech is to change the world .” —JFK
  101. 101. “ If all my possessions were taken from me with one exception, I would choose to keep the p ower of s p eech , for by it I would regain all the rest.” —Daniel Webster
  102. 102. Presentation Excellence 37. Practice … but don’t leave your game in the locker room. 38. Seek tips on how various participants “play the [presentation] game” 39. A Presentation is an Act (FDR: “The President must be the nation’s number one actor”) 40. Remember, the presentation is about Change … RESISTANCE IS NORMAL (in fact if there’s little resistance then your Project is hardly a “game changer”) 41. Dress well. Don’t over-dress. 42. Be early (obvious, but worth saying) 43. GET THE A/V RIGHT/PERFECT. 44. Don’t bring a supporting horde … a couple of back-ups is okay/enough 45. No matter how good you are you’ll have crappy days … WEEP AND THEN GET BACK ON THE HORSE
  103. 103. Presentation Excellence 46. Speak in “Plain English” … keep the jargon to a minimum 47. Make your Personal Commitment clear as a bell! 48. Emphasize “competitive advantage” and timeliness (act now), without stooping to ridiculous war-like language (“tear the heart out of the competition”) (in audiences with heavy female component, if you are male, avoid repetitive “football analogues”) 49. Underscore the USP/Unique Selling Proposition 50. Emphasize the Positive 51. Sell Novelty yet “fit” with “core values” 52. Remember JFK’s immortal words: “The only reason to give a speech is to change the world”
  104. 104. Presentation Excellence 53. Say what you have to say Clearly … and then Say It Again & Again from slightly different angles 54. Make it clear that you are a Man/Woman of Action … and Execution Excellence is your First, Middle, and Last Name! 55. Energy! Enthusiasm! (don’t know the answer to, “If you ain’t got it how do you get it?”) 56. Enjoy it! This is a Hoot! THE ULTIMATE TURN ON! Remember your Goal: Change the world!
  105. 105. “ In classical times when Cicero had finished speaking, the people said, ‘How well he spoke,’ but when Demosthenes had finished speaking, they said, ‘ Let us march .’” —Adlai Stevenson
  106. 106. Let us march.
  107. 107. Interviewing Excellence: The IntX31
  108. 108. Life = Talk Listen
  109. 109. Interviewing Excellence 1. INTERVIEWING IS AN “ART” WORTH MASTERING! (Think Christiane Amanpour, Mike Wallace) 2. Don’t overschedule—2 or 3 in-depth interviews are a solid day’s work. (More than that is lunacy and will lead to shallow results.) 3. Save, if possible, the “Big Guy”/Gal until last—that is, until you know what the hell you’re doing! 4. Find a comfy/“safe”/neutral setting. THIS IS ALL IMPORTANT! (Worst case: You on the other side of his/her desk.) 5. Start with a little bit (LITTLE) of local small talk. But get some tips on the interviewee ahead of time; he may be one of the “brusque ones” who considers any small talk a waste of his Imperial Time. 6. DO YOUR DAMN HOME WORK! (On the interviewee, the subject matter.) 7. Concoct a … LONG LIST … of questions. (You’ll only use 10% of it, but that’s okay.)
  110. 110. Interviewing Excellence 8. Prepare a … SHORT LIST … of questions you must get answered. 9. Begin by briefly reviewing your assignment—why you’re here. 10. ALWAYS ASK FOR EXAMPLES! (When she says “Customer Service is in good shape,” you ask for specifics—hard data, recent Customer Service successes (and failures). And: PRECISELY WHO YOU CAN FOLLOW UP WITH TO GET MORE DETAIL. 11. STORIES! STORIES! STORIES! (You are in the “Story Collection Business.) 12. Dress well. DON’T OVERDRESS. (Look like they look, more or less; perhaps a touch more formal—this is a Serious Affair you are engaging in.) 13. Assume you’ll never get another chance to talk to this person. 14. Be personable, but more or less match the interviewee’s style. (THIS IS HARD WORK!) 15. THINK … SMALL! “Please walk me in great detail through the [complaint resolution] process. Here, let’s diagram it.”
  111. 111. Interviewing Excellence 16. For God’s sake, get to the Front Line! (The devil is in the details, and the details are to be found on the loading dock at 3a.m.) (YES … 3A.M.) 17. Don’t quit until you understand. THE INTERVIEWEE ALWAYS TALKS IN SHORTHAND—using the jargon of the Corporate Culture. You’ve got to crack the code. (THIS IS ABOUT THE HARDEST THING TO DO, ESPECIALLY IF YOU ARE YOUNG AND UNCERTAIN: Tell yourself you are here to ask “Dumb” Questions—this is not a job interview. Again, think Mike Wallace: “So did you in fact murder Mrs. Smith?”) 18. Ignore generalizations! YOU ARE HERE IN SEARCH OF SPECIFICS!!! 19. CONTEXT! “Get” the “corporate culture”—e.g. Shell is not ExxonMobil! Find out (from a set of interviewees) “Core Values” (in theory and in practice).
  112. 112. Interviewing Excellence 20. Engage the Interviewee! GET HER TO DO SOME OF THE WORK! E.g., write out her view of the Ten Key Operative Core Values—or some such. 20A. ENGAGE! ENGAGE! ENGAGE! 21. You must come across as “trustworthy.” YOU ARE A DUMBO HERE TO LEARN—NOT AN FBI AGENT IN DISGUISE. 22. “Take me through yesterday.” Get past the theoretical crap. Give me in excruciating detail an average day: YESTERDAY! (One hour/meeting at a time.) 23. “If you’re comfortable, let’s go over your Calendar for the last month, so I can understand the flow of things.” (Remember TP’s Rule #1: YOU = YOUR CALENDAR.) 24. DON’T LET YOUR NOTES AGE!! Immediately after the interview set aside some time to do a “stream of consciousness” recap. And to clean up the obscure scrawl on your notes.
  113. 113. Interviewing Excellence 25. Ask the interview if you can get back to her by phone tomorrow to fill in holes that your tin ear missed. NO MORE THAN TEN MINUTES. 26. LEARNING! Tag along with “great interviewers” in your organization. (I made three PBS films with a Director who had been Mike Wallace’s director at 60 Minutes —oh my God, how much I learned—or, rather, how little I learned: He could drag stuff out of people that you couldn’t believe. (Secret: “I’m just a dumb old fart trying to figure out what goes on here. HELP ME. PLEASE.”) 27. “Work on” your Level of Dis-satisfaction: BE MAD AS HELL WHEN YOU SPENT 1.5 HOURS ON AN INTERVIEW WITHOUT REVALATIONS! 28. No, you’re not FBI—BUT YOU ARE HERE TO FERRET OUT THE NON-OBVIOUS. So: Keep Digging! (Think Woodward & Bernstein.)
  114. 114. Interviewing Excellence 29. Repeat: INTERVIEWING IS A CRUCIALLY IMPORTANT “ART.” Study it! Work on it! It’s no different than golf or underwater basket-weaving. The more & harder you work, the better you get. 30. Yes, we need “facts” (e.g., stories), but remember always: INTERVIEWS ARE PURE & SIMPLE ABOUT EMOTIONAL INTERACTION! 31. Tom Wrap-up Note: FEW THINGS IN LIFE PISS ME OFF MORE THAN GOING THROUGH SOMEONE’S INTERVIEW NOTES AND FINDING A DEARTH OF “SOLID EVIDENCE”—examples., stories, detailed process maps, etc. (I BLOODY HATE Generalizations!) (Think doctor’s office: Come hell & high water they start with weight, blood pressure, pulse.)
  115. 115. Mastering Sales : The Sales25
  116. 116. It’s true, I am a professional. I am a professional Salesperson. I spend 200 nights a year on the road … hawking ideas. I’m proud to be a salesman, to join the company of Winston Churchill, the great Greek orators—and the guys & gals who used to peddle whatever for Fuller Brush. Here I go again! “We” have a thousand course in business school on marketing. And at, at least, the “prestigious” schools nary a course on sales. Utterly ridiculous. In my presentations, I try ever so humbly, to bring Sales center stage. The two lists that follow (long, short) hardly fill the bill. They simply amount to a few ideas.
  117. 117. “ Everyone lives by selling something.” — Robert Louis Stevenson
  118. 118. Great Salespeople … 1. Know the product. (Find cool mentors, and use them.) 2. Know the company. 3. Know the customer. (Including the customer’s consultants.) (And especially the “corporate culture.”) 4. Love internal politics at home and abroad. 5. Religiously respect competitors. (No badmouthing, no matter how provoked.) 6. Wire the customer’s org. (Relationships at all levels & functions.) 7. Wire the home team’s org. and vendors’ orgs. (INVEST Big Time time in relationships at all levels & functions.) (Take junior people in all functions to client meetings.)
  119. 119. It’s politics, stupid! (Play or sit on the sidelines.)
  120. 120. Great Salespeople … 8. Never overpromise. (Even if it costs you your job.) 9. Sell only by solving problems-creating profitable opportunities. (“Our product solves these problems, creates these unimagined INCREDIBLE opportunities, and will make you a ton of money—here’s exactly how.”) (IS THIS A “PRODUCT SALE” OR A WOW-ORIGINAL SOLUTION YOU’LL BE DINING OFF 5 YEARS FROM NOW? THAT WILL BE WRITTEN UP IN THE TRADE PRESS?) 10. Will involve anybody—including mortal enemies—if it enhances the scope of the problem we can solve and increases the scope of the opportunity we can encompass. 11. Know the Brand Story cold; live the Brand Story. (If not, leave.)
  121. 121. Great Salespeople … 12. Think “Turnkey.” (It’s always your problem!) 13. Act as “orchestra conductor”: You are responsible for making the whole-damn-network respond. (PERIOD.) 14. Help the customer get to know the vendor’s organization & build up their Rolodex. 15. Walk away from bad business. (Even if it gets you fired.) 16. Understand the idea of a “good loss.” (A bold effort that’s sometimes better than a lousy win.) 17. Think those who regularly say “It’s all a price issue” suffer from rampant immaturity & shrunken imagination. 18. Will not give away the store to get a foot in the door. 19. Are wary & respectful of upstarts—the real enemy. 20. Seek several “cool customers”—who’ll drag you into Tomorrowland.
  122. 122. “ If you don’t listen, you don’t sell anything.” —Carolyn Marland/Managing Director/Guardian Group
  123. 123. Great Salespeople … 21. Use the word “partnership” obsessively, even though it is way overused. (“Partnership” includes folks at all levels throughout the supply chain.) 22. Send thank you notes by the truckload. (NOT E-NOTES.) (Most are for “little things.”) (50% of those notes are sent to those in our company!) Remember birthdays. Use the word “we.” 23. When you look across the table at the customer, think religiously to yourself: “HOW CAN I MAKE THIS DUDE RICH & FAMOUS & GET HIM-HER PROMOTED?” 24. Great salespeople can affirmatively respond to the query in an HP banner ad: HAVE YOU CHANGED CIVILIZATION TODAY? 25. Keep your bloody PowerPoint slides simple!
  124. 124. Three for the A g es GETTING TO YES … Roger Fisher, William Ury, Bruce Patton LEARNED OPTIMISM … Martin Seligman CRUCIAL CONFRONTATIONS … Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan, Al Switzler
  125. 125. GE (more or less) : The Sales122: 122 Ridiculously Obvious Thoughts About Selling Stuff Tom Peters/0402.2006
  126. 126. This list was first prepared for GE Energy sales & marketing people in January [2006]. It started with a half-dozen items, and grew like Topsy. Possibly, given its origins, it’s a little tilted toward complex, engineering-based sales. Well, they are what they are—and on second viewing most of them apply to most of us. Tom Peters
  127. 127. 1. “Strategy” overrated, simply “doin’ stuff” underrated. See Kelleher and Bossidy: “We have a ‘strategic plan,’ it’s called doing things.”—Herb Kelleher. “Execution is a systematic process of rigorously discussing hows and whats, tenaciously following through, and ensuring accountability.” —Larry Bossidy & Ram Charan / Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done . Action has its own logic—ask Genghis Khan, Rommel, COL John Boyd, U.S. Grant, Patton, W.T. Sherman. 2. What are you personally great at? (Key word: “great.”) Play to strengths! “Distinct or Extinct.” You should aim to be “outrageously good”/B.I.W. at a niche area (or more). 3. Are you a “personality,” a de facto “brand” in the industry? The Dr Phil of ... 4. Opportunism (with a little forethought) mostly wins. (“Successful people are the ones who are good at Plan B.”) 5. Little starts can lead to big wins. Most true winners—think search & Google—start as something small. Many big deals—Disney & Pixar—could have been done as little-er deals if you’d had the guts to jump before the value became obvious.
  128. 128. “ Everyone lives by selling something.” — Robert Louis Stevenson
  129. 129. 6. Non-obvious targets have great potential. Among many other things, everybody goes after the obvious ones. Also, the “non-obvious” are often good Partners for technology experiments. 7. The best relationships are often (usually?) not “top to top”! (Often the best: hungry division GMs eager to make a mark.) 8. IT’S RELATIONSHIPS, STUPID—DEEP AND FROM MULTIPLE FUNCTIONS. 9. In any public-sector business, you must become an avid student of “the politics,” the incentives and constraints, mostly non-economic, facing all of the players. Politicians are usually incredibly logical—if you (deeply!) understand the matrix in which they exist. 10. Relationships from within our firm are as important—often more important—as those from outside—again broad is as important as deep. Allies—avid supporters!—within and from non-obvious places may be more important than relationships at the Client organization. Goal: an “insanely unfair ‘market share’” of insiders’ time devoted to your projects!
  130. 130. C(I) > C(X)
  131. 131. 11. Interesting outsiders are essential to innovative proposal and sales teams. An “exciting” sales-proposal team is as important as a prestigious one. 12. Is the proposal-sales team weird enough—weirdos come up with the most interesting, game-changer ideas. Period. 13. Lunch with at least one weirdo per month. (Goal: always on the prowl for interesting new stuff.) 14. Gratuitous comment: Lunches with good friends are typically a waste of (professional) time. 15. Don’t short-change (time, money, depth) the proposal process. Miss one tiny nuance, one potential incentive that “makes my day” for a key Client player—and watch the whole gig be torpedoed. 16. “Sticking with it” sometimes pays, sometimes not—it takes a lot of tries to forge the best path in. Sometimes you never do, after a literal lifetime. (Ah, life.) 17. WOMEN ARE SIMPLY BETTER AT RELATIONSHIPS—don’t get hung up—particularly in tech firms—on what industries-countries “ women can’t do.” (Or some such bullshit.)
  132. 132. 18. Work incessantly on your “story”—most economic value springs from a good story (think Perrier)! In sensitive public or quasi-public negotiations, a compelling story is of immense value—politics is about the tension among competing stories. (If you don’t believe me, ask Karl Rove or James Carville.) (“Storytelling is the core of culture.” — Branded Nation: The Marketing of Megachurch, College Inc., and Museumworld , James Twitchell) 19. Call this 18A, or 18 repeat: Become a first-rate Storyteller! (“A key – perhaps the key – to leadership is the effective communication of a story.”—Howard Gardner, Leading Minds: An Anatomy of Leadership ) 20. Risk Assessment & Risk Management is more about stories than advanced math—i.e., brilliant scenario construction. 21. Good listeners are good sales people. Period. 22. Lousy listeners are lousy sales people. Period. 23. GREAT LISTENERS ARE GREAT SALES PEOPLE. (Listening “skills” are hard to learn and subject to immense effort in pursuit of Mastery. A virtuoso “listener” is as rare as a virtuoso cello player.) (“If you don’t listen, you don’t sell anything.”—Carolyn Marland/MD/Guardian Group)
  133. 133. 24. Things that are funny to me (American) are often-mostly not funny to those in other cultures. (Humor is as fine-edged as it gets, and rarely travels.) 25. You don’t know Jack Squat about other peoples’ cultures—especially if you are a typically myopic American. (Like me.) 26. Are you a great interviewer? It’s a make or break skill. (Think Barbara Walters’ skill at extracting unwanted truths from pros in persona-protection ... in front of 10s of millions of people. 27. Are you a great (not merely “good”) presenter? Mastering presentation skills is a life’s work—with stupendous payoff. 28. Work like hell on the Big 2: LISTENING/INTERVIEWING, PRESENTING. These are “the essence of [sales] life”—and usually picked-up in an amateurish fashion. Mistake! (Become a “professional student” of these two areas, achieve Mastery.) 29. Are you good at flowers? Think: FLOWER POWER ! (see Harvey Mackay’s “Mackay 66”—what you should know about a Client; e.g., birthdays & anniversaries.) (My “flowers budget” is out of control. Hooray for me.) 30. You can’t do it all—be clear at what you are good at, bad at, indifferent at. Hubris sucks.
  134. 134. F L O W E R P O W E R
  135. 135. 31. The point is not to “prove yourself.” (That’s ego-talk.) Let the best person present to the Client—perhaps a “lower level” geek. (“Control freaks” get their just desserts in the long haul—or sooner.) 32. The numbers will more or less take care of themselves over the long haul— if the relationship/s is/are solid gold. 33. The Gold Standard in selling: INDISPENSABLE to the Client. No other goal is worthy. 34. Never stop growing-broadening-deepening the relationship. The key to “indispensability” is to get the Client more and more … and more … and then more … imbedded in “our” web. Hence the so-called “selling process” is only the first step! 35. USE THE WORD “WE” … CONSTANTLY & RELIGIOUSLY! (E.g.: “We”—the Client & me—“are going to change the world with this service.”) 36. Don’t waste your time on jerks—it’ll rarely work out in the mid- to long-term. 37. Genius is walking away from lousy “scores” (deals)—and accepting the attendant heat. Big Business is the premier home to Big Egos overpaying by a factor of 2 to 22 with billion$$$$ at stake. (Think Jerry Levin and AOL Time Warner.)
  136. 136. “ If you don’t listen, you don’t sell anything.” —Carolyn Marland/ Managing Director/ Guardian Group
  137. 137. 38. You haven’t a clue as to how this situation will actually play out—be prepared to move fast in a different direction. 39. Keep your word. 40. KEEP YOUR WORD. 41. Underpromise (i.e., don’t over-promise; i.e., cut yourself a little slack) even if it costs you business—winning is a long-term affair. Over-promising is Sign #1 of a lack of integrity. You will pay the piper. 42. There is such a thing as a “good loss”—if you’ve tested something new and developed good relationships. A half-dozen honorable, ingenious losses over a two-year period can pave the way for a Big Victory in a New Space in year 3. 43. It’s a competitive world out there. New, innovative products are harder to sell than old stand-bys. Nonetheless, you will be a long-term star to the extent that you are willing to push the harder-to-sell-at-the-moment Innovative Products that cement long-term Client success (Indispensability!) —even if it means a #s hit this quarter. PART OF YOUR JOB: TAKE CLIENTS ON AN ADVENTURE THAT PUTS THEM AHEAD OF THE GAME CALLED (GAMECHANGING—hopefully) COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE!
  138. 138. “ You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.” —Dale Carnegie
  139. 139. 44. Think “legacy”—what the hell is all this really about for you and the world? (“Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” —Mary Oliver) 45. THERE ARE NO “MODERATES” IN THE HISTORY BOOKS! 46. Keep it simple! (Damn it!) No matter how “sophisticated” the product. If you can’t explain it in a phrase, a page, or to your 14-year-old ... you haven’t got it right yet. 47. Know more than the next guy. Homework pays. (of course it’s obvious—but in my work it is too often honored in the breach.) 48. Regardless of project size, winning or losing invariably hinges on a raft of “little stuff.” Little stuff is and always has been everything!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!—or, “one man’s little stuff is another man’s 7.6 Richter deal-breaker.” 49. In public settings in particular, face saving is all. When something changes, allow the other guy to come out looking like a winner, especially if he has lost. (Even if you must accept the egg on your face—he will always remember you!) 50. Don’t hold grudges. (It is the ultimate in small mindedness—and incredibly wasteful and ineffective. There’s always tomorrow.)
  140. 140. 51. IT’S ALWAYS “THE POLITICS”— wee private-sector deal or giant public sector deal. (Every player, small or large, is angling for something. Master the calculus of advantage.) 52. To beat the “turnover problem” in key Client posts amidst long negotiations, invest outrageous amounts of time building a wide & deep set of relationships with mid-level (& lower!!) “plodding” “careerists.” The invisible careerists are the bedrock upon which repeated success is built! (My “Capitol Hill Axiom”: It’s the 24-year-old LA who in the end briefs the Senator right before she goes to the Floor to vote.) 53. Speaking of “she”: Gender differences are Enormous—dealing with a woman and dealing with a man are different kettles of fish—you must become an A+ student of gender differences. (E.g.: Men are typically more interested in the short-term “score.” Women are more interested in the long-term consequences.) 54. “LITTLE PEOPLE” OFTEN HAVE BIG FRIENDS. 55. This is not war, damn it. All parties can win (or not lose, anyway). And losing bidders can walk away from a deal with increased respect for you and your team.
  141. 141. 56. Never, ever dump on a competitor—the Tom Watson IBM glory-days mantra. 57. Never forget the “Law of Cousins!” In developing nations in particular, power brokers at all levels are at least cousins! Consideration for a second cousin can pay off big time. 58. Speaking of “favors,” jail sucks. 59. Work hard beats work smart. (Mostly.) 60. REPEAT: HE/SHE WHO HAS THE MOST-BEST RELATIONSHIPS WINS. RELATIONSHIPS ARE THE ESSENCE OF THE WORK OF THE SALESPERSON. THE HARD ... AND LONG ... WORK OF THE SALESPERSON. 61. Mano v mano “hardball” is seldom the answer—end runs based and patient multi-level relationship building via deeper-wider networks win. 62. If the deal is wired from below, truly wired, than the so-called “big negotiations” are essentially irrelevant. 63. If every quarter is a “little better” than the prior quarter—then you are not taking any serious risks. 64. Phones beat email.
  142. 142. “ Nothing is so contagious as enthusiasm. ” — Samuel Taylor Coleridge
  143. 143. 65. A THREE-MINUTE CALL TODAY CAN AVOID A GAME-LOSER OF A FIASCO NEXT MONTH. There was always a time when a little thing could have been addressed that headed off a subsequent big thing. As to avoiding that call, didn’t someone say, “Pride goeth before the fall”? 66. Be hyper-organized about relationship management—you are in the anthropology business. Study the great pols! Brilliant NRM (network relationship management) is not accidental! It is not catch-as-catch can. (Football analogies are cute—but deep political understanding pays the private-school tuition.) 67. Obsess on ROIR (Return On Investment In Relationships). 68. “THANK YOU” NOTES: World’s highest-return investment!! 69. The way to anyone’s heart: Doing a nice thing for their kid. (But, gawd, does this take a gentle touch.) 70. Scoring off other people is stupid. Winners are always in the business of creating the maximum # of winners—among adversaries at least as much as among “partners.” 71. Your colleagues’ successes are your successes. Period. (Trust me, my greatest personal success—financially as well as artistically—has been creating a bigger pond in which everyone wins, even if my “market share” is down.)
  144. 144. 72. Lend a helping hand, especially when you don’t have the time. E.g. share relationships—the more you give away the more you get in return (just like they say in church). 73. Listen up: “It was much later that I realized Dad’s secret. He gained respect by giving it. He talked and listened to the fourth-grade kids in Spring Valley who shined shoes the same way he talked and listened to a bishop or a college president. He was seriously interested in who you were and what you had to say.” —Sara Lawrence-Lightfoot, Respect. (I.e., Respect is Cool.) 74. Mentoring is a thrill— and the practical payoff is enormous. The best mentors have the whole world working its buns off for them! 75. Hire for enthusiasm. Promote for enthusiasm. Cherish enthusiasm. REMOVE NON-ENTHUSIASTS—THEY ARE CANCERS. (“Nothing is so contagious as enthusiasm.”—Samuel Taylor Coleridge. “A man without a smiling face must not open a shop.”—Chinese Proverb.) 76. IT’S ALWAYS YOUR PROBLEM—you sold it to them.
  145. 145. 77. It’s never over: While there may be an excellent service activity in your company, the “relationship” belongs to You! Hence the “aftersales” “moments of truth” are at least as—if not more than*--important to the Continuing Relationship as the sale “transaction” itself. (*I vote for “more than.”) You’ll get your biggest “points” with the Client for being an effective after-the-fact go-between with your company. 78. Don’t get too hung up on “systems integration”—first & foremost, the individual bits have got to work. 79. For God’s sake don’t over promise on “systems integration”—it’s nigh on impossible to deliver. 80. On the other hand … winners clamber Up the Value-added Ladder, and offer ever so much more than “mere” product. ALL SUCCESSFUL SALES PEOPLE ARE IN THE “SOLUTIONS BUSINESS”—no matter how jargony that may sound.
  146. 146. 81. “Systems” / “Solutions” selling means grappling directly with “culture change” in Client organizations. (“The business of selling is not just about matching viable solutions to the customers that require them. It’s equally about managing the change process the customer will need to go through to implement the solution and achieve the value promised by the solution”—Jeff Thull, The Prime Solution: Close the Value Gap, Increase Margins, and Win the Complex Sale ) 82. Shit happens. That’s what they pay you for. 83. This is not a “GE” or “Ben & Jerry’s” sale—it is a Joe Jones/Jane Jones sale. YOU ARE THE “BRAND” THE CLIENT BUYS—especially over the long haul. 84. Duh: You make money, the company makes money—on repeat business. 85. Master—yes, you—the “PR” Game. “Word of Mouth” is not accidental! You want Word of Mouth? Make it happen! 86. GOAL #1: MAKE YOUR CLIENT A HERO—YOU ARE NOT THERE TO GET CREDIT. (“Taking credit” is for egomaniacs. And losers.) 87. “Decent margins,” over the mid- to long-term, are a product of better relationships, not better “negotiating skill.” (Mostly.)
  147. 147. “ You can’t behave in a calm, rational manner. You’ve got to be out there on the lunatic fringe.” — Jack Welch
  148. 148. 88. In the immortal words of ex-GE Vice Chairman Larry Bossidy, more or less, “Realism rocks.” (“Bullshit artist” and “great salesperson,” contrary to conventional wisdom, are Diametric Opposites. “Truthteller” and Great Salesperson is more like it.) 89. Be the first to tell the Client bad news (e.g., slipped delivery); his intelligence sources will tell him fast—you want to be there first with your story and to enhance your rep as Truthteller! 90. Work like hell to get a reputation as a valued industry expert, to become an industry resource. 91. Work the Trade Association angle for all its worth—it may take a decade to pay off—e.g., when you become an officer or are on an important panel or testify Before Congress. 92. PAY YOUR DUES IN THE CLIENT ORG AND IN YOUR OWN ORG! 93. It’s all bloody tactics. 94. You must ... LOVE .... the product! (Period.) 95. YOU MUST LOVE THE PRODUCT! 96. Don’t over-schedule. “Running late” is inexcusable at any level of seniority; it is the ultimate mark of self-importance mixed with contempt.
  149. 149. 97. Women are better salespeople. (See Addendum.) 98. Women alone understand Women. 99. Actually, Women by and large understand Men better than Men understand Men. 100.Women purchasers buy Stories and recommendations. 101. Women take longer to become Loyal purchasers, but then stay Loyal. 102. Men buy Stats. 103. Men decide fast, but are fickle. 104. Men & Women are … VERY, VERY … Different. 105. Women buy most things. Consumer. Increasingly, professional goods and services. 106. Women’s Market is Opportunity #1. 107. Boomers. Many, many. Lots & lots & lots of … $$$. 108. Boomers-Geezers are very different purchasers than those in other categories.
  150. 150. Women Rock … as Salespersons (From Item #97.) And the answers are? “ TAKE THIS QUICK QUIZ: Who manages more things at once? Who puts more effort into their appearance? Who usually takes care of the details? Who finds it easier to meet new people? Who asks more questions in a conversation? Who is a better listener? Who has more interest in communication skills? Who is more inclined to get involved? Who encourages harmony and agreement? Who has better intuition? Who works with a longer ‘to do’ list? Who enjoys a recap to the day’s events? Who is better at keeping in touch with others?” Source: Selling Is a Woman’s Game: 15 Powerful Reasons Why Women Can Outsell Men , Nicki Joy & Susan Kane-Benson
  151. 151. 109. It takes time to get to know people. (DUH.) 110. The very idea of “efficiency” in relationship development is ... STUPID. 111. MBWA (still) rules. 112. “Preparing the soil” is the “first 98 percent.” (Or more.) 113. WORK THE PHONES! 114. Rule 5K-5M: 5K miles for a 5-Minute meeting often makes sense. (Yes, often.) (Even with constrained travel budgets.) (Thanks, super-agent Mark McCormack.) 115. Become a student! Study great salespeople! (Including Presidents.) (“Natural” is a little bit true—but then Naturals are always the ones who study hardest—e.g., Jerry Rice.) 116. Become a student! Yes, you can study Relationship Building. So, study … 117. Beware complexifiers and complicators. (Truly “smart people” ... Simplify things.)
  152. 152. 118. The smartest guy in the room rarely wins—alas, he usually is aware he’s the smartest guy. (And needn’t waste his time on that “soft relationship crap.”) 119. Be kind. It works. 120. Be especially kind when there are screw-ups. (There’s plenty of time later to Play the Great Accountability Game.) 121. Presidents never tire of being treated like Presidents. 122. Luck matters. Good luck!
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