Employee Acceleration

High-Performance Employees Through a Culture of Trust (833 words)

High-Performance Employees Through a Culture of Trust

Culture of Trust

The necessity for a culture of Trust. I’ll never forget the warmth of the desert sun the day that I was told I did it all wrong. No training, but high expectations in assuming that I knew the difference between oil and water based paints.

Yes, when I was about 7 years old, the eldest of my three elder-sister and her husband took me for a weekend trip to the desert house of my brother-in-law’s father. I was excited to be helpful on the warm Saturday morning. The Father assigned me the task of opening up several partially used cans of paint and combining like colors in single cans.

When I finished the chore, I was quite pleased with myself. The Father checked my work and became angry and agitated. He realized that I had mixed together the water based and oil based white paints. I did not understand the difference in paint bases. He proceeded to tell me that I was a bad boy and could use a spanking. There was clearly no culture of trust in that household.

You might be thinking,

“Gosh—the Father should have instructed the 7 year old a little bit better as to the expectations of the job and offered a degree of training.” I agree with you whole-heartedly. Funny thing is, adults do the same to other adults quite frequently in the work place.

In most businesses, training and trust (T&T) makes the difference between high-performance employees and just average employees. This is also evident in seemingly productive environments. Even if your business had a 20% increase last year, do you know for a fact that your increase shouldn’t have been 25%?

Developing a culture of trust  

must be done on a solid foundation of comprehensive and effective employee training. In all too many companies, I’ve seen the culture of employee training akin to that of throwing a child in the pool and expecting that child to swim to the safety of the pool’s edge all by themselves. You know what I mean, hiring an employee and giving them just enough knowledge to bumble along and figuring that in time, they will catch on. In a recent interview, the folks at Dell Computers even admitted that that’s how they did it in their early days.

Why not take the time and train your employees well from the start?  

Is it because you do not have a methodical system for training that you can replicate accurately? This would be my first guess. Is it because you are just too darn busy? Is it because you never gave it much thought? Whatever the reason, understand that when employees are not trained well, there is the tendency among supervisory personnel to frequently check up and second guess the work of those under their charge.

This exemplifies mistrust.  

When a supervisory or management person goes behind the employee, especially a veteran, and either supplements or changes the work or a completed task of an employee, what they are really saying to the employee, and saying it loud and clear is, “I don’t trust you.” If by word or deed, you say too frequently to an employee, “I don’t trust you.” The employee will eventually become demoralized and abandon any emotional ownership that they might have in the success of the enterprise. The result will be just another mediocre employee, that management considers easily replaceable.

Supervisors then find themselves babysitting employees  

rather than seizing the opportunities for productivity increases and or resource savings. It all spirals into a culture of mistrust between employees and supervisors and management. The result being lost productivity, even if there might be productivity increases—just not the level of increases possible.

The solution is to develop a culture of trust upon the foundation of comprehensive and effective training.

Answer for yourself a few questions about how your organization operates.

  1. Can your training system be replicated from supervisor to supervisor and from department to department?
  2. Is your training system in writing?
  3. Do you have metrics for measuring the effectiveness of the individuals that train new employees?
  4. Do you have a periodic (one week, then one month, then six months) follow up system or mechanism for new employees to offer feedback on how well they feel they were trained to do the required job?
  5. Do you have a bi-annual system for employees to rate their supervisors?
  6. Are your supervisors aware that when they do things, change things, and/ or supplement things behind the backs of your employees, they are telling your employees, by deed, that they don’t trust your employees?

T&T is the answer!  

Training well, and then trusting your employees is the key to high productivity. That does not mean you cannot check up on employees, by all means it is prudent to do that. But don’t do it behind their backs. If an issue is uncovered, go directly to the employee and re-train and re-educate. This will develop a culture of trust. And, in a trusting workplace, employees have a greater emotional ownership in the success of the enterprise.

Great Job Recognition

No-Cost & Low-Cost Employee Motivation Techniques (768 words)

No-Cost & Low-Cost Employee Motivation Techniques

Low-Cost Employee Motivation

Use low-cost employee motivation to help your employees to have an emotional ownership in the success of your enterprise. Any time, especially in difficult economic times, throwing money with a strategy-less approach, at this challenge is generally not your best bet. However, putting energy and strategy into helping your employees will always serve you well. You can easily make employees your “Partners” in success, with just a little effort.

What business can honestly state that they have no employee challenges? Every business leader must excel at low-cost employee motivation for his or her employees. Through my two decades of research on this topic, I firmly believe that recognition is your Number One key to success. And, the best part is that you can do so much to enable this effort at little or no cost to your organization.

Below, you’ll find several no cost and low cost employee recognition ideas that I’ve culled from my years of work in this area. Embrace a newly energized for low-cost employee motivation effort to show your employees through both word and deed that they matter to you and your organization. Give them a modicum of respect and appreciation, and you’ll be amazed how they respond.

  1. To start, how about a desk or workstation visit from the president? What’s that cost? Nothing. And yet the value is priceless. Are you getting the idea?
  2. E-mail from the president. (Similar to the above.)
  3. Birthday card mailed to employee’s home.
  4. Afternoon Birthday celebration with cake and coffee.
  5. Notice to all employees of an employee’s special performance.
  6. Letter of recognition in employee’s permanent file.
  7. Have a “Highlighting Employee” section in company newsletter.
  8. “Job Well Done” pens.
  9. Company logo coffee cup.
  10. Attaboy or Attagirl stickers.
  11. Paid time off (big in the military).
  12. Recognition an important meeting.
  13. Flowers from manager’s home garden.
  14. Company T-shirt, polo shirt, denim shirt, cap, of jacket.
  15. Private lunch with the president or other executive.
  16. New title.
  17. Balloons.
  18. Gift certificates to local restaurant, theater or video rental store.
  19. Flex time.
  20. Special parking space.
  21. Private verbal praise, especially in the presence of co-workers.
  22. An office Pass-on button that states, “Job well Done!” or “Special Effort”.
  23. Team potluck celebration.
  24. Choice of work assignments.
  25. Certificate of Appreciation.
  26. Bake cookies for an employee.
  27. Team congratulatory song.
  28. Selecting the workplace radio station for a week.
  29. “Come in late/get off early” card.
  30. Get the workplace recycled soda cans for a month.
  31. Handshake and a sincere, “Thank you”.
  32. Specialty advertising items with company logo.
  33. Boss for a day.
  34. Care package to spouse or children of employee.
  35. Letter about employee’s accomplishments to their family.
  36. Boss washing employee’s car.
  37. Food: all-day suckers, pizza, donuts or maybe even something healthy.
  38. “Get Out of Meeting” card.
  39. Free vending machine privileges for the week.
  40. Lotto tickets.
  41. Gold star on desk. (Might seem silly, however it works.)
  42. Facial, pedicure or massage.
  43. Cater breakfast at employee’s desk.
  44. Party at owner or executive’s home.
  45. “We’ll do it Your Way Today” card.
  46. Software, special keyboard, new chair, etc.
  47. Notice about employee accomplishments in local newspaper.
  48. Assign additional responsibility.
  49. Guaranteed quiet/thinking time.
  50. Include employee in decision-making.
  51. Decorate office for holidays.
  52. Lunch or dinner at long meetings and training classes.
  53. Listen to the employee.
  54. Personal encouragement and mentoring from anyone in the executive suite.
  55. Allowed to attend a business or personal skills seminar of their choice.
  56. Specialty area diploma for employee, signed by department head and division executive or president.
  57. Tank of gasoline for employee’s car. (This is a bigger deal today.)
  58. Allowing the staff member to sit in or chair the monthly management meeting.
  59. An afternoon off for shopping etc.
  60. Recognition at regular staff breakfasts, verbally and by acclamation.
  61. A CD/DVD record of the project or job, which led to the outstanding behavior.
  62. Notice about employee accomplishments in company’s web site or newsletter.
  63. Make your employee look good in front of his/her spouse/significant other; you’ll have won a large amount of loyalty.

I bet you could come up with a dozen more low-cost employee motivation ideas if you just put some thought into it. The important factor to grasp is that it is less about the material recognition and more about the bragging rights and emotional connection that an employee receives from being singled out for a job well done. Now please, go onward and spread the emotional wealth.

Water Cooler Recognition

Motivate Today’s Employees with Recognition (808 words)

Motivate Today’s Employees with Recognition

Recognition

Recognition

Recognition is how to motivate your employees. Do you fear that today’s employees are sometimes un-motivate-able? Here’s the good news; employee motivation is easier than you might realize. Today’s employees really are motivated through recognition. The key is to understand the various kinds of activities considered to be recognition of an employee’s abilities, hence motivational for today’s employees.

A while back I conducted an employee motivation research project while I was traveling North America for the Dun & Bradstreet Foundation delivering full-day public seminars, targeted to business. After several months and hundreds of responses to a simple question, “What can your boss, or your company, do to improve your company loyalty?” It was amazing! Over 50% of the responses were: recognition, or something very similar. Guess what, it is the same today.

Part of Something Bigger

When you can find a way to help your employees to be part of something bigger than them, they are more engaged and their work has a purpose beyond the daily grind,,that’s recognition. For most of today’s active workforce in North America , this involvement is perceived as recognition. They receive pleasure from participating in something special; a huge marketing and sales campaign, a contest, company reorganization, special research project, community activity, etc.

The smart employer that really understands employee motivation gets in front and leads. As an example, a community project might seem like a drain on resources for a small business, but really is a marketing/publicity campaign if administered correctly. Employees are allowed to spend a small amount of company time on the project and encouraged to spend some of their own time doing the same. The innovative business leader finds ways to “spin” the project for publicity which will translate to more community involvement with the company and into increased sales.

Give Them Some Control through Recognition

It has been proven over and over again since the famous “Western Electric’s Hawthorne Works” study conducted by Harvard back in the late 1930s that employee productivity increases when the employees have control over their environment. I wrote about a similar situation that I observed at a Grand Rapids manufacturing company in my first book, “The Art of Partnering.” When employees took over control of the worst production line at the factory, they solved many of the challenges. The line soon became one of the most productive and also desirable among employees to work. In both cases the employees were given the recognition of trust that they could successfully control their work environment.

Trust and Respect Are Powerful Recognition Tools

Today’s employees want to be trusted and respected as having something to contribute beyond mindless labor and compliance; and they want it now! For the “Baby Boomer” aged business leader, trust and respect is something that must be earned over a period of time. The natural gap here is the length of time. In order to motivate today’s employees, older business leaders must dramatically speed up their distribution of trust and respect—not a naturally easy thing to do.

For many of today’s employees, an employer’s recognition through trust equals respect in their minds; and respect equals belonging. If you can see your way to helping your employees to have an emotional ownership in belonging to the community of your organization, they will see that as recognition and will be motivated to participate at accelerated levels within the “community.” This accelerated participation, if channeled correctly, will mean accelerated productivity.

Give What They Cannot Buy

It goes without saying that you have to pay (total package) your employees well. If you do not, your competitors will. However, beyond the compensation package, you will find a myriad of opportunities to show appreciation for the value employees deliver to your organization.

Find, discover, and develop appreciation (recognition) in conduits with legs. When you hand out cash recognitions, the cash disappears instantly and is forgotten almost as quickly. Let’s say that you gave an employee $200. There are a number of consumable niceties that they could instantly enjoy—then they simply want more cash.

Or, perhaps take that same $200 and have your company logo embroidered on the back of a trendy leather jacket. Give the jacket to that same employee. How long to you think they will enjoy the jacket? Most likely for years, and every time they wear the jacket it is a reminder of your appreciation for their work. By the way, whatever you select as recognitions, make sure those items are not available to employees through purchase. Give them what they cannot but.

Recognition for today’s employees need not be elusive to employers. To motivate today’s employees, recognitions must be thought-out and implemented with the same care as a military operation; innovate, research, decide, organize, and implement. Do these things any you will motivate your employees to do more and be more than you had previously considered possible.

More Customers

Culture Shift–Partnering at Mitsubishi (808 Words)

Culture Shift--Partnering at Mitsubishi

Culture Shift

Culture Shift to effectiveness. You, the retail business owner or company executive, determine the culture of your company. At Mitsubishi Motor Sales, the executive team really understands that it’s up to them to lead the charge that being the optimal partner is critical to partnering success. They know that without the executive suite beating the partnering drum, very little happens. It wasn’t always that way. Most of the executive team came from the American automotive industry and they thought they were going to build a different kind of company. Dan McNamara, senior vice president of corporate administration at Mitsubishi Motor Sales related their story to me. Seven or eight years into it, as the organization was maturing, the executives looked around and realized they hadn’t developed a partnering situation. They had built the antithesis of what they had planned–company politics and back stabbing–they had a sickness within.

Culture Shift to Fix Problems

Lucky enough, they realized they had a problem. The company was young and the culture flexible–they believed change was possible. After several flawed attempts to change, using popular management quick fixes and learning buzzwords, Richard (Dick) Recchia, executive vice president, general operations and COO, went off for an afternoon to develop a new mission statement. The statement was published, distributed, and not followed. They then realized that gimmicks were not going to work.

Later, they started to talk about values and realizing, with the assistance of outside consultants, that people’s behavior is grounded in their underlying values. This led them to a model for ranking values, both individual, and collectively. They found that the key was to identify those values and align those values with the kind of company they wanted to be. As the management team started understanding their own individual values, they were surprised at how similar their values were collectively. The executives realized that they each were not alone in putting high value on family and personal life.

Culture Shift to a Visioning Process

From this foundation, they stared a visioning process–Recchia went off to a hotel room, with a consultant, to articulate his vision for the company on paper. Next, the executive team went on a two and one-half day retreat, focusing on only three issues:

  • Breaking down the barriers that existed.
  • Recchia sharing his vision.
  • Recchia inviting the team to expand his vision, encompassing their additional values.

The result of the retreat was an expanded vision for the company–not one that Recchia had to “sell” to his executive team, but one expanded by the team, in which they had ownership. The next step was to share this vision with the next level of management, about 30 people. Again, getting this level of management’s personal ownership in the vision through their additional input. Then appointed these 30 plus managers to carry the vision throughout the company.

McNamara recalled, “We made a mistake!” As the managers were carrying the message throughout the ranks, the executive team, rather than pushing ahead and further working in the new vision, moved on to other challenges and assumed their managers could make the cultural change alone. The change they wanted wasn’t possible because the employees did not experience the executives changing their behavior and pushing for the new culture. McNamara told me they lost about a year.

Culture Shift with a Re-Start

Learning from their misfortunes, the executive team started again with the process, taking charge and showing the employees by example that they meant, and would live by what they professed.  Following this enlightened genesis, the executives set out to change departmental policies that were not in alignment with the vision. As an example, human resources had been reviewing employees, giving them a numerical grade, like in school. Eventually, the review process was changed to a “Values Initiate Performance” (VIP), where numbers were replaced by a value-based system that was “individual driven,” focusing on their growth and not holding them accountable for a corporate “guesstimate.” The value Mitsubishi has received as a result of their change:

  • Communications improvement. Reduced politics, backstabbing, and hidden agendas, along with, an increased willingness by employees to partner interdepartmentally, keeping others informed.
  • Greater productivity through increased creativity and risk taking.

The Mitsubishi executive team believed that they could build a better company, one in which partnering was part of their culture. Once they were clear on their vision and allowed it to be expanded by others, things happened. They didn’t sell the vision but allowed others to have ownership by expanding and adding to the primary vision.

After many false starts, the executives became optimal partners by not charging others with executing the company’s vision, but by leading the charge and living what they professed. The lessons Mitsubishi learned are universal truths that any retail business owner, executive, or executive team must embrace to successfully partner with their employees. If Mitsubishi can do it, so can you!

PartnerShift-How to Profit from the Partnering Trend

Successful Partnering Starts in the Executive Suite (1563 Words)

Successful Partnering starts in the executive suite

PartnerShift to Successful Partnering

Successful partnering starts in the executive suite. Be the kind of person that others would like to do business with. At Levi Strauss, they’re living what they say. This privately held San Francisco-based company is letting action speak louder than words. They’re reshaping their corporate culture through dismantling parts of their hierarchy and overhauling how they design, manufacturer, and market their clothing. Former Chief Executive, Robert Haas, a former Peace Corps volunteer and great-great-grandnephew of founder Levi Strauss is being an optimal partner by building ethics into the company’s bottom line through ethical practices, empowerment, and an appreciation of diversity. He embraces empowerment, the practice of putting more power into the hands of Levi’s employees at all levels and encourages them to become actively involved in corporate decision making.

Levi Strauss is embracing the belief and practice of partnering throughout their many areas of business. Haas suggests that their emphasis on values is “not just nice behavior” but that it is also smart business. He states, “Consumers are looking more and more to the company behind the product. Companies have to wake up to the fact that they are more than a product on a shelf. They’re behavior as well.” This had much to do with their decision of partial withdrawal from China, citing “pervasive violations of basic human rights” as the reason.

Haas believes that this adherence to business ethics has not hurt the company. In fact he believes the reverse, it has helped the company’s profits. Haas walks his talk in being an optimal partner by embracing ethical business practices at Levi. He empowers his employees by giving power, rather than by protecting the power with the armor of his position. Similarly, Miles Gordon, CEO at Financial Network Investment Corporation, largest independent brokers organization in the country, advocates that being the optimal partner is their only strategy. In asking Gordon if he believes the ability to adopt partnering is in-bred, he answered:

“I believe you’re not born with it, but it starts from early life. I think it’s your family values which, looking back at our company, the people that have really bought into this (which is a lot of people) and especially people that have been around a long time and have orchestrated, family values are very similar. Strong family values, a strong belief in keeping the overhead down, working and not just living off other people. In other words, you earn what you get.”

Being an optimal partner, whether your a small retailer or a major supplier, is the right thing to do, not just because its ethical, which should be reason enough, but because it pays off, as illustrated by the example of Levi Strauss & Company and for you.

THINKING your way to being an optimal partner is a start. For decades, the late, Dr. Norman Vincent Peal lectured across the country about the possibilities that are available through the power of positive thinking. In his classic The Power of Positive Thinking, Peal stated:

“A sense of inadequacy interferes with the attainment of your hopes, but self-confidence leads to self-realization and achievement.”

Create for yourself the attitude of limitless partnering possibilities. It’s no secret that attitude can and will make the difference between partnering failure and success-and success is what you ultimately want! It’s easier than you think to get into the mindset of “I don’t care” or the “I can’t do it.” It’s your self-confidence that will allow you to become the optimal partner-the pentad I detailed last month will not be complete without you!

Roger Tompkins, former vice president California of State Farm Insurance stated, “Managers see people as essentially lazy, somewhat stupid, needing constant direction and prodding to get any work done. Theory Y managers, on the other hand, see people as essentially interested in being productive, ready to work, and to cooperate, (if shown the way and given the tools) and essentially self-starting.

As I think about how I have interacted with other associates of the State Farm Insurance Companies, both employees and agents, over the years, I realize I have viewed them through the Theory Y lens. As a result, our ‘Marketing Partnership’ concept and philosophy, which is so integral to the way we approach serving our customers in the marketplace, has always squared with my personal view of people.”

When you get caught in the drift of life and/or business, and you will, it’s your partners who will be there for you with strength, energy and enthusiasm to assist you in seeing new and unique solutions to your challenges. This is something on which you could never put a monetary value or price. What you can do is be an optimal partner and reciprocate when your partners, the others in your pentad, are in need. Your partnering alliances have a vested interest in your success, as you do in theirs.

To view your daily concerns, better yet-challenges, from a new perspective, requires that you shift your paradigms (beliefs, standards, or models). For successful partnering, you must challenge your paradigms and shift away from what is not serving you.

Look at it this way: when you look at a tall tree from 50 feet away through a standard 50mm camera lens you see a particular view, not all of the tree. Now change to a macro close-up lens and you see not much of anything. Now change to a wide-angle lens and you see just about all of it. What was different each time? The lens, your filter-each of us filters how the world truly is and that’s our reality. So, change your filter, your vision, and behold all the new possibilities.

To stretch your partnering muscles, try taking on a lens that a well-focused question provides. Ask yourself daily: “Would you enter into a partnering alliance with somebody like you?” If asked habitually, this question will help you to keep activities and decisions in the perspective of being the optimal partner. Ask daily: “Who do I now trust that may serve and be served as my partner?” A sign you might consider posting where it is quite visible: “Who’s My Partner Today?”

Successful Partnering Needs You

Successful partnering is not for every business and organization, because it takes you having the capability of being an optimal partner to know if partnering is right for your business. Reasons not to partner may include: You may simply view the world from a place of loss and negativity. You have the market cornered (but for how long), and enjoy the power position of calling all the shots. You may be a loner and prefer to go it alone. Maybe you’re even satisfied to make do with less. You may not desire to build a Successful Partnering Pentad, but let me warn you-you can’t be in business today without partnering to some degree. Maybe it’s partnering with your customers, maybe another area, but you simply cannot operate in a vacuum and survive. If you find yourself having the above negative conversations, find the strength to escape your perceived dungeons.

Platinum Partnering

Maybe you’ve heard it called the Platinum Rule, or The Golden Rule Expanded? I heard about this idea from Patricia Fripp in the mid-1980s. Whatever you call it, the concept is, to do unto others the way they would have you do unto them. To be the optimal partner you must see things as your partnering alliance members do, otherwise you’ll greatly diminish your possibilities. Think back to great leaders you’ve had the opportunity with which to interact–haven’t they made you comfortable around them? Sure they may have pushed you to achieve more, but that wouldn’t have been possible, had they not initially built rapport. They somehow have had the ability to get you to want to perform to your highest level of potential, and that’s successful partnering. The same is important for you if you want people and organizations to partner with you.

For Successful partnering, learn the skills to understand people, learn how to effectively communicate on their terms rather than yours. Anthony Robbins’ book, Unlimited Power, is essentially about creating more power within–allowing one to more effectively influence others through effective communications. Robbins says: “To me, success is the ongoing process of striving to become more. It is the opportunity to continually grow emotionally, socially, spiritually, physiologically, intellectually, and financially while contributing in some positive way to others. The road to success [or partnering] is always under construction. It is a progressive course, not an end to be reached.”

Dan McNamara, former senior vice president at Mitsubishi Motor Sales of America asserts, “Be sure you’re prepared to live the values you profess–your people will ‘hear’ what they ‘see,’ not what you say.”

In the Korean business culture the principle of Nunchi, the ability to look in someone’s eyes and understand, allows for a powerful nonverbal communication. Through this process, employees make decisions that reflect how their manager would expect them to decide. Nunchi also exists as a societal binder and is the reason given by some for Koreans’ less outgoing nature as compared to Westerners. As partnering relationships blossom, this further sense of deeper understanding and communication, becomes more real and less theoretical–assisting in alliance harmony. Study nunchi, if you can develop the sense, you will become the type of person to which others will gravitate–the optimal partner.

Business Partnering

Leveraging Your Business Relationships (543 Words)

Outrageously Successful Business RelationshipsConducting business successfully has always been, and will always be, driven by business relationships. While many claim relationships in business are dead and price is the only game, they are sadly mistaken. Today, more than ever before—leaders must fill their skills toolbox with the knowledge and ability to leverage both casual and sustained relationships into more formal strategic alliance relationships.

Reasons for Alliance Relationships

Looking at the alliance possibilities, the leader of an organization must ask, “What’s in it for my organization?” The answer to this question is that there are a number of benefits to any organization in building alliance relationships. First the leader must have a clear understanding of both the strength and weaknesses of their organization. Armed with this knowledge, the leader can look at potential alliance relationships to shore up the organizations weaknesses and share its strengths. Chapter One of my book, Developing Strategic Alliances, will give you a number of typical business alliances. This chapter is available to you at no charge, simply download the chapter at www.rigsbee.com/dsa1.htm.

Total Organizational Partnering System—The Partnering Pentad

The Total Organizational Partnering System is a strategic approach in which the leader may view their organization. Also called the Partnering Pentad, there are five strategic areas for building internal and external alliance relationships. The five areas are: the leadership alliance, the employee alliance, the customer alliance, the supplier alliance and strategic alliances (frequently with competitors). The system is the method in which all the areas interact with one another. More information at www.rigsbee.com/ps6.htm.

Alliance Implementation

In recent history, alliance relationships only enjoy success in the 50-percentile area. Much of the reasons for alliance success and failure revolve around the leader’s implementation strategy. The need to drive alliance relationships from the top of any organization is crucial to the success of any attempted alliance relationships both internal and external to the organization. Eli Lilly and Company is a forerunner in alliance implementation. For more on their strategy, visit http://alliances.lilly.com. Additionally, visit my alliance resource page at www.rigsbee.com/allianceresources.htm. At this web page, you will be able to access a number of organizations that are actively participating in helping organizations develop alliance relationships.

Developing Outrageously Successful Alliance Relationships

In all of the previously mentioned areas for developing alliance relationships, leaders can dramatically increase the potential for success by embracing and developing an emotional ownership in four necessary relationship tools. First, leaders must focus on getting things done rather than on being right. Second, leaders must make relationship bank deposit before they attempt to make withdrawals. Third, leaders must maintain their integrity, especially in times of relationship conflict. Fourth, leaders must use the relationship value updatetool for all alliance relationships. If you would like a copy of my Relationship Value Update Form, please e-mail your request (in subject box: RVU request) to me at Ed@Rigsbee.com.

Leaders Driving the Alliance Paradigm

In any organization, the culture is driven from the top down—never the bottom up! As goes the leadership, goes the organization. In building outrageously successful alliance relationships, it is the same. The idea of leveraging relationships into formal alliances—doing so successfully, and in a sustained manner, is built on the foundation of active leadership participation. Leaders always set the bar, benchmark and tone.

Partnering's 5 Areas

Building Your Pentad for Partnering Success (974 Words)

Partnering's 5 Areas

Five Areas of Partnering

Time for a Pentad. Are you tired of adversarial business relationships draining your energy?

It is time for you to look at a new way of conducting business–one that empowers all to be more productive and profitable.

If the pain of where you are is greater than the perceived pain of the unknown, you might be ready for partnering. Partnering is an idea that is loosely used to describe anything from teamwork to alliances to contractual partnerships. Partnering, as I define it, is the process of two or more entities coming together for the purpose of creating synergistic solutions to their mutual challenges. I recommend you adopt partnering as your overall business strategy. The benefits are numerous yet the partnering path is not without land mines.

Partnering is not meant to be a flavor-of-the-month management strategy to be hastily adopted and then as quickly abandoned, rather a long term paradigm for success. Partnering is not instant gratification! To adopt partnering as your overall management strategy, you’ll need to understand the Partnering Pentad. A pentad is simply the name given to a group of five, the Partnering Pentad represents the five key areas of every business, the areas in which to begin developing your partnering belief and activities. Once in place, you’ll have Total Organizational Partnering.

1. Synergistic Alliances

This is the area of your business where you develop alliances with outside entities for activities where you have core weaknesses you desire to shore up and to cut costs. These could include: purchasing, R&D, manufacturing, employee sharing, distribution, marketing, advertising and the list continues. By sharing your core strengths with others and theirs with you, both can create an environment of synergy yielding each more than the some total of their collective contributions. Land mines to watch out for are core values of alliance members being too different, circles of interest overlap being too little, and continual management change of one or more alliance partners.

2. Supplier Partnering

This is an area where much is being talked about.  For companies desiring just-in-time manufacturing (JIT) and electronic data interchange (EDI) ordering and inventory control, partnering is an absolute prerequisite.What I here so often from suppliers about their customers is, “They’re talking marriage but acting one night stand.” Whether you be a retailer, distributor, or manufacturer–to succeed and prosper, you had better start developing long-term relationships with those whom you do your purchasing. The biggest land mine in this area is to talk about quality, delivery, and reliability while only buying based on price. Remember, there is today’s price but there is also the overall cost–the overall cost is usually lower through long-term partnering relationships.

3. Customer Partnering

This is the area of your business where you must be outward driven. Your customers will buy from you as long as they feel they’re receiving good value for the dollars they give you. Value-added is a term which much is being written about. You must be customer/market driven rather than product driven to understand what your customers want and perceive as value being added to your products and services. It costs about 10 times as much to get a new customer as to keep a loyal customer coming back for more. The important land mine to watch out for is short-term thinking on your part when making customer satisfaction decisions.

4. Employee Partnering

To many businesses is a “non-issue,” meaning that they don’t. What motivated the WWII generation is different from what motivates baby boomers and is different from what motivates the youth of today.  Just because something motivates you, it doesn’t necessarily mean it will motivate those of a different generation than yours. If you want your employees to have an ownership in your business–even though they don’t have a legal ownership and to hold sacred the business as you do–you must empower your employees.  Empowering means giving them the authority and encouraging them to accept the responsibility to do the job. Then acknowledge their successes and failures in an environment of safety–one where you encourage and reward risk taking. The major land mine to watch out for is the Ego Trap, yours of course. To give power, you must be a powerful person, one who possesses personal power rather than power simply acquired from your position.

5. Owners/Executives as Optimal Partners

This is the final and in many ways the most important part of the pentad. Not the most important from the perspective that all revolves around you, but that of having a culture of true partnering. The belief must start at the top, you must lead the charge and show by words and actions that the paradigm of partnering is truly your preferred and accepted business strategy. The critical land mine here is when top brass arrogantly believes that they are at the center of the pentad and that all should revolve around them.  The coveted center is reserved for the relationships that bind the partnering pentad and your organization as a viable entity serving society and receiving profits as the result.

For today’s cutting-edge business leaders, partnering is the prevailing answer. The Partnering Pentad will enable businesses of any size to access the benefits generated by pooling the knowledge and experience, crucial to compete in the global marketplace. Partnering is the answer if you are willing to adopt the paradigm of collaboration for mutual success! Challenge yourself to put into action the paradigm of partnering as your management and marketing strategy. Nicholas Copernicus, the father of modern astronomy, in the first decade of the sixteenth century A.D. wrote a paper stating, contrary to conventional wisdom, that the earth was not the center of the universe, but rather that it rotated around the Sun. For this he was rewarded with a 500 year excommunication by the church, what price are you willing to pay for progress?

Expectations

New Year Expectations (1330 Words)

ExpectationsExpectations…how did you celebrate the beginning of the New Year? Did you simply stay home and take it easy, attend a huge celebration or travel to an exotic location? Did the celebration meet your expectations? In my opinion, how you bring in the New Year is far less important than what you plan to do in it!

As a child, I remember looking forward to Easter. This was when I got a new pair of shoes and new clothes for Easter Sunday. One year, it didn’t happen. I didn’t get my new shoes and clothes. I was completely disappointed, and to this day I carry that memory. While I do not let the memory immobilize me, it’s still there. People, organizations, places and events can easily fall short of one’s expectations. Often expectations of others are unrealistic.

Perhaps you might have similar memories in your brain’s old tape file. If you do, hopefully you don’t let them immobilize you. What about your New Year’s eve experience? Was it what you thought it would be? How did you feel when there was no bolt of lightning in the sky to usher another thousand years of Western civilization? This “feeling” of unfulfilled expectations can cause a myriad of complications in your life if you allow it to. When did you last allow unfulfilled expectations to immobilize you? How did you get out of your funk?

Expectations & Behavior

Life can be quite challenging when your expectations are not met. What are your expectations for the New Year? Expectations come in all forms, for your business, for yourself and for others, just to name a few. Since you really do not have control over others, I’d suggest that you don’t put much energy there. Where you do have control is over your own behavior decisions. Your behavior choices set both an example and expectations. What behavior decisions will you rethink?

It is the behavior decisions in our lives that determine our achievement, not the perceived limitations, like the childhood memories I mentioned earlier. Or, even worse, what some ill intentioned teacher might have told you about your “limited capabilities” back in high school or some other institution. With this said, what are the possibilities for the next thousand years? Who knows? More importantly, what are your possibilities for the next twelve months? You are accountable to fulfill your own expectations. As a business owner, manager or executive, you also are accountable to assist your employees in achieving their expectations. What will you do differently in the New Year?

At the schools my sons attend, large banners are posted by the school district with their motto, “High Expectations = High Achievement”. I suspect these are really posted for the benefit of the district’s teachers. If the teachers have high expectations of their students, then hopefully they will also have high expectations of themselves. With high expectations of themselves, the teachers will deliver the kind of quality education necessary for their students to excel. Then, and only then, can the students reach their own expectations. Think about yourself as the teacher and your employees as the students. What could you do differently that would create value for your employees?

What Do You Want?

Frequently, in my seminars, I’ll tell attendees that the definition of insanity is doing what you’ve always done but expecting different results. The dawning of every New Year is a wonderful opportunity to make new behavior decisions. The break makes change psychologically easier. The subconscious accepts the new decision easier. What new behavior decisions will you make?

High on my list of recommendations is adopting the behavior I like to call the Partnering Paradigm. This is a paradigm of synergy through cooperation. It applies to your business expectations both externally and internally. It also applies to your external and internal personal expectations. In business, seek external partners to develop strategic alliances. Select partners that have complimentary core competencies to those of your company. This will give all involved the best chance for developing synergies that will create value. Internal to your company, look for new strategies to help your employees have the Emotional Ownership necessary to act as if they were an owner, to take intelligent risks essential for business growth. See my article titled; Praise for a Job Well Done (www.rigsbee.com) for low and no cost employee recognition ideas.

To help your employees develop alignment with your vision, find your company’s stories. Look for your stories that illustrate the behaviors you wish to be repeated. Retell these stories regularly to reinforce desired behaviors. Make the stories part of your culture. Achieving a successful shift in company culture takes time, please be patient. What changes would you like to make in your company’s culture?

Control Yourself

The person you choose to be is the key to all that I’ve been saying. Your internal conversations that you have with yourself are what determine your behavior decisions. To achieve your personal expectations, you must control your behavior. When someone says, “They made me do it.” My rebuttal is usually; “I don’t think so!” Unless there is some kind of a chemical or hormonal imbalance in your physical body, YOU CONTROL YOUR BEHAVIOR. If you do have a physiological problem, seek professional help and let those around you know what’s happening. They will be more tolerant, patient and understanding.

In your personal life you also have internal (to the family) behavior issues. I find this a regular challenge in my own life. Both balance issues and how I interact with my family. I frequently catch myself allowing the communication with my teenage son to be mostly negative in dealing with my expectations of his behavior. As behavioral issues of children must be handled, also positive relationship bank deposits must be made for their emotional growth to take place. What personal behaviors must you adjust so you can meet your own expectations?

The external behaviors I mentioned in your personal life generally include extended family, friends and your community. How to you treat people? How do you give of yourself? Year-round, I donate time in my community as a youth soccer referee. How do you “show up” or personally get involved in your community? You say you’re too busy? As a colleague, Ira Blumenthal, (in reference to youth sports) says, “You can build fields or you can build prisons.” Behavior decisions in your life define who you are, a giver or a taker. We already have plenty of takers. What we really need is more givers. If you aren’t already, will you become a giver?

I’ll not ask you to make a New Year’s Resolution because most resolutions fade by Valentine’s Day, or sooner. My hope for you though, is that like the Phoenix rising anew from the ashes of devastation, you allow the New Year to be your symbol for change and rebirth. Never again in your lifetime will you have such a symbolic opportunity for renaissance. The decision of indecision is for the pathetic. William James, in The Principles of Psychology (1892) stated, “There is no more miserable human being than one in whom nothing is habitual but indecision.”

Adopt Partnering

The decision to adopt a new Partnering behavior can create enormous value in many areas of your life. In business, new synergies (the sum of the whole is greater than the sum of the parts) will become possible. These synergies will become evident both externally and internally. In you personal life, a new Partnering (or cooperation) behavior will bring you closer to the ones you love and care about. You will also find a new feeling of balance in your life.

So, what are your expectations? Will you resolve to make the behavior decisions necessary to satisfy your expectations? What are my expectations? I’ll tell you. This year, I expect to double, from last year, the number of people I help in making new and different behavior decisions for their lives. I wish you the best of success in making notable behavior decisions.

Your Possibility, My Possibility, Our Possibility

Your Possibilities, My Possibilities, Our Possibilities (784 Words)

Your Possibility, My Possibility, Our PossibilityPossibilities…as you run and hurry from one activity to the other, putting out fires at every turn—have you ever stopped for a moment to consider the possibilities? What possibilities you ask? Is this the life you thought you’d be living? Is this the business you thought you’d be running? Are you working so hard that life is passing you by? Is there another, more effective work paradigm?

Have you recently asked yourself a question something like, “Why am I putting myself through this, really?” If you have, you are doubtlessly being more honest that those who say they have not. The good news is that you are not alone. At the seminars I give, scores of business leaders have privately shared their similar feelings with me.

What’s the answer? I don’t believe there is only one answer but several possibilities from which each person may select. What does this mean to you? It means that on any given day, there are forks in the road and you decide on your preferred road. Unfortunately, most people select what appears to be the easiest road. Then, hidden around the bend, is an incredible mountain to climb one that often appears overwhelming and hopeless. Too often you feel smothered from all the stuff that either you have loaded on your plate or allowed others to heap onto it. Sometimes you just want to get off the carousel of business, or life, and crawl under a rock. Don’t you?

Lonely at the Top

While the view is magnificent, it is also very lonely at the top. Success is sweeter when you have someone with which to share it. Warren Bennis, in his book, Leaders-The Strategies for Taking Charge identified through a number of interviews an important trait among most successful leaders. It was the ability to stay in their marriage-long term. This trait is so crucial because it demonstrates a leader’s ability to work with others, see and honor another person’s point of view and be flexible when things don’t turn out as intended—which is almost all the time.

In my books on partnering and strategic alliances, I continually talk about synergistic possibilities. This is the basic idea of taking one plus one and getting three or more rather than the expected two. In my own life, I catch myself at times simply doing something myself, rather than teaching another how to do the task, thinking it is easier and quicker. In the long run though, that belief eventually proves that I’m taking the wrong path. Working with, and teaching others, takes understanding and patience—unfortunately, too few leaders exhibit these virtues.

As I’m sure you’ve guessed by now, my recommended paradigm or solution to your challenges is partnering—in one form or another. To shrink your daily load, you will want to look at both external and internal partnering alliance possibilities. First, look at the inside possibilities. Can you build stronger alliances with your employees? If you can achieve this, the result will be their accelerated sense of emotional ownership in the success of your business. What a great partnering benefit!

Alliance Possibilities

External alliance relationships include those with your competitors, suppliers, customers and other organizations that can assist in the strengthening of your core weakness areas. This will allow you the time to develop your more profitable core strength areas. Just think about the possibilities available to you if you have strong relationships with the external groups mentioned. Better buying possibilities with your suppliers, increased loyalty among your customer and collaborative possibilities with competitors for marketing, research, delivery and production.

Contrary to what you might have perceived, partnering is not for everybody. Some people just cannot let go. They have a desperate need for control. They cannot see the opportunities available to them. If you are one of those people, you are sentenced to going it alone with an overflowing plate of activities that are better suited for others. You will scrape and struggle, jumping from one crisis to the other. You’ll continually complain about the behavior of others and get more and more frustrated until you end up in the hospital with one some life threatening condition.

For you that are willing to do the front-end work and build alliance relationships, the world is your oyster. Everywhere you look, you will see partnering possibilities. Your challenge is to select your partners well and to first focus on what matters to you and your business the most. Slowly, you will find your plate less loaded with things that others could easily do. You will find time to explore business and personal opportunities rather than spending your precious time just fighting fires. Now is the time to select your path.

Professional Speaker

Public Speaking for Dollars and Sales Increases (2473 Words)

Public Speaking For Sales Increases, Speak for Dollars

Public Speaking for Dollars and Sales Increases

Public Speaking

Public speaking is a great way to connect with your current and future customers. Present your ideas at a public or a private venue. Presenting to a targeted audience is an accelerated way to stimulate business. Sure, speaking to groups of people can be a frightening prospect, but you do want to increase sales, don’t you? Why do so many people have this fright, do you suppose? Perhaps, if the audience doesn’t like what you have to say they’ll call the police in and have you taken off to jail for disturbing the peace? Just kidding, it’s not too likely that will ever happen. So, what is it? Maybe it’s an imposter syndrome fear? A fear that the audience will discover one is not as smart as one might pretend to be? No! They already know that. Then what is it?

I believe many are afraid of presenting because of low self-esteem. Let’s not confuse brash egotism with quality self-esteem. When you feel good about yourself you are willing to take a risk and be vulnerable. Yes, I said vulnerable! This is when a perceived weakness can become a real strength. Think back and visualize in your mind a presenter, one at which you attended their live presentation. Now that you have the presentation in your mind, ask yourself, “How real were they?” Your answer will most likely be: “They were very real. I felt like they were speaking directly to me.” This is because they allowed their self to be vulnerable. You thought they were there for you actually as your guide or mentor.

There are three basic ways to use public speaking to market your products and services:

  1. Speaking to community and service clubs.
  2. Holding information specific seminars.
  3. Doing demonstrations; out in public and in-home party style.

First, we’ll look at speaking to your community organizations. This idea is great when you primarily market to your local community, otherwise you’ll be doing quite a lot of traveling. Here’s an easy way to start: Prepare a 25-minute presentation about the value your industry provides for consumers. Make it non-commercial and non-specific to your product or service. Do this, and you’ll receive acceptance.

Your speech will be the most effective if you have an opening grabber to break the preoccupation barrier that most people have. Try something humorous about your business or in your industry. Another grabber can be controversy, but be cautious. Develop a transition to the body and then cover only three to four key points. Keep the presentation body fun, informative and positive. Next, summarize and have a call to action. This is the suggestion for your audience to stop by your place of business to see, hear or learn more. Conclude with a quotation or a short meaningful story. Just relax you’ll be a hit.

Book a Public Speaking Engagement

Contact your chamber of commerce for a list of community organizations. Contact all of the groups on the chamber list. Offer to speak at their meeting. You’ll be surprised at how many will accept your offer. Don’t try to sell the audience anything at their meeting except yourself. Be a giver a giver of knowledge and business will come your way. Remember to send out news releases to the local media every time you speak. While you’re out speaking, look for an organization to join and get involved. Being active in your community is an excellent way to show you’re a community partner and to get noticed.

The second way to use public speaking is to hold seminars. Check your newspaper, usually the Sunday paper is best. Look for the ads advertising free seminars—you should find one or two. The common seminars you’ll notice are for Wills, Trust & Estate Planning, Real Estate, Health and Fitness, and a variety of other offerings. The plan is to get the prospects in the door. You do this by providing them with a small amount of dynamite information (useful, of course). Then, at the end, offer your products and services for sale or lease.

Record your seminars, and when you deliver what you consider to be a great one make, it into a “for sale” product or use it as an incentive product…most likely downloadable content and products from your Website will work out best.

Elements to Successful Public Seminars

Advertise your seminar with the local media. Sell people on attending the seminar, make truthful promises of value and benefits for all who attend, let them know what’s in it for them. Remember that the attendees are giving of time and energy to get there. Be sure to have some helpers there to take your new customers’ money, credit cards, etc. If you are not great at closing the sale, consider partnering with a professional sales person to increase the volume of sales.

The seminar can be held at your place of business or a rented location such as a hotel/motel conference room, park, school, or anything you can think of—be innovative. Wherever it is, make it comfortable for about an hour stay 45 minutes for the information, 10 minutes for your sales presentation and the five minutes just because.

The third way to promote your business through public speaking is through the demonstration method. You can do this in public gathering places like fairs and carnivals, at trade shows and in a private home setting. Demonstrations in public can be as brief as five minutes or up to 15 minutes. Any longer than 15 minutes, you’ll have people stop by and move on. At these public demonstrations you’ll need to be prepared to answer questions and possibly sell your products. You can probably partner with another person or group to help you do those tasks.

In-home public speaking demonstrations can be effective. I remember growing up and going out with my mother when she gave consumer product parties at people’s homes. It seemed like every year my mother would switch to a new company. Take my advise stick to one thing and you’ll surely make lots of money it’s advice nobody gave my mother or advice she never took. Companies like Tupperware are synonymous with this method and it works!

Personal Publicity through Public Speaking

Personal publicity will help you to become more secure and confident. People that appear to be of value are the ones companies seek to become integral with their organization. Our economy is dynamic and ever changing. Companies can no longer afford to keep on the deadwood that in an era gone by was possible. Make a commitment to yourself here and now to be a person of value. This means you’ll have to bring more value to your workplace. Also, you can more easily find new employment for yourself if necessary.

Many American companies have gone through excruciating change and downsizing. They are looking to their star performers to keep the business afloat. These stars came to the attention of management by intelligently and subtly publicizing their accomplishments and heroic efforts throughout their company and industry. You too, can do this. Yes I understand that it’s not your way the problem is that “your way” may create a one-way ticket to oblivion. Many people need someone to give them permission to do something that their parents once told them was not “our way.” I hereby give you permission to promote yourself to the world!

As a colleague, Mark Victor Hanson, coauthor of the “Chicken Soup” books, has often told me, “Let your inner knower tell you what to do.” Your inner knower can help you to see your true value to the economy in which you participate. Let go of your negative “stuff” on self-promotion and move on to fulfill your potential!

Listed below are three typical reasons professionals and business leaders are hesitant to self-promote. Do these ring true for you?

  1. Feel it’s too self-important, pompous, pontifical, pretentious, stuffy, grandiose, ostentatious or stuffy.
  2. Not in keeping with the professional image they want to project.
  3. Believe promotion costs more then the value they receive.

Truly, the only restraint that keeps you from having the public image and stature that many enjoy is the conversation you have with yourself about the additional possibilities for your life. Dislodge those old tapes in your head that have been immobilizing your efforts to get ahead. Launch them right out of your consciousness.

Ways To Get People To Notice You

  • Promote free booklets/reports on ideas and information related to your business or service.
  • Author a book. You become an instant expert.
  • Do your own radio show, perhaps a Saturday or Sunday morning public information type.
  • Publish a printed or electronic newsletter.
  • Stay in touch with clients and prospects by mailing them articles you clipped.
  • Become an expert resource for local and national media reporters.
  • Welcome new people to your town.
  • News releases are an inexpensive way to get your name in print; always include a photo.
  • Write a weekly or monthly newspaper or magazine column.
  • Congratulate people on promotions you read about in the local paper and in trade pubs.
  • Give great public speaking experiences to others.
  • Public seminars sponsored by your company or another company with which you partner.
  • Word-of-mouth happy clients and happy employees talk!
  • Host power breakfasts for local business leaders.
  • Get on, or even better, host radio and/or TV talk shows.

Crashing Past Gatekeepers of the Media To Get Your Foot In The Door

The various kinds of traditional and social media exposure can make the difference in your success in gaining speaking opportunities and/or help you to fill the seats of your public events. While social media is about…showing up regularly…traditional media takes quite a bit more work.

  • Controversy sells in all forms of the media. Media is drawn to it like insects to a night light.
  • Relevance to a current event is important. Make your story connect to what is happening now.
  • Hope, it does not sell as well as controversy, but it does sell. The media is looking for ways to show that progress is being made in solving today’s social problems.
  • Simplification of life, for most, life has become too complex. Show how people can save time, improve the quality of their lives, find enjoyment and fulfillment, and generally be happier.
  • Overcoming Adversity is a regular media winner. America has always cheered for the underdog. Show how you have done it and become a media darling.

Partnering with the media can be your secret weapon if used well. Develop relationships with as many local and national reporters and editors as possible. The more you can do to make their life easier the better the chances you’ll get coverage.

To Better Connect with the Media, Make a Favorable Impression

  • Take the Eight “Cs” approach: Be Concise, Candid, Correct, Conversational, Clear, Compassionate, Controversial, and Calm!
  • Use the name of your company or product rather than saying, “The widget or The Company.”
  • Give your main point first, in a concise, positive, and complete sentence.
  • Remember that the best defense is a good offence.
  • Be honest.
  • Relax and smile.
  • Make a public interest viewpoint.
  • Become an “industry” source.
  • Be as prepared and knowledgeable as possible.
  • Watch or listen to the show or read the publication beforehand.
  • Radiate confidence and energy. Energy plus Enthusiasm equals Excitement!
  • If you really do not know, say “I don’t have the answer now” . . . and explain rather than, “I don’t know,” or “No comment.”
  • Keep your cool.
  • Believe to the core of your being, that you have something of value to offer their audience.

Things You Will Want to Avoid

  • Do not repeat negative or “Loaded” words.
  • Do not say anything “off the record” because there is no such thing in today’s media.
  • Do not make exaggerated claims or predictions.
  • Do not lie, mislead, or try to bluff because it will come back and bite you in the rear.
  • Do not discuss your personal finances.
  • Do not lose your temper. If you do, the host will make a monkey of you. I once saw Ted Turner lose his temper on Donahue and Phil made Ted look like a . . . Well, you know.
  • Do not wear checks, plaids, stripes, or large prints before a camera because you will look    terrible.
  • Do not look for the “on camera” red light. Instead, talk directly to the reporter or    interviewer.
  • Do not nod affirmatively to a question with which you disagree. Instead clearly show that you are not in agreement with the interviewer or other guest.
  • Do not be defensive.
  • Do not use jargon that few will understand. Rather than appearing bright, you will appear smug or arrogant.
  • Do not leave your humor in the waiting room. Humor is one of the best ways to win over the audience.
  • Do not try to be someone you aren’t. Your insincerity will show through like a red flag.
  • Do not forget to say “Thank you” to the show’s host.

If You Want to be Asked Back

  • If you show up in person, DRESS TO IMPRESS.
  • Be prepared.
  • Always be in time for the interview.
  • Your materials should be up-to-date.
  • Smile before, during, and after the interview, even if you are not in-studio.
  • Arrive early so you don’t appear rushed, but not so early that you’re in the way.
  • Listen intently to the host.
  • Answer question asked, even if you do move a little off their subject.
  • Answer to the point and be concise.
  • Answer with enthusiasm.
  • Do not answer a question with a question, a simple yes or no, or “yup.”
  • If you’re unfamiliar with a question, simply say so.
  • If you don’t clearly hear the question, ask them to please repeat it.
  • Call the host by name and thank them briefly on air.
  • Send a postproduction thank you note to the host and producer.

Public speaking is an awesome way to grow your business. You have just discovered the tools to get to the media. If you made the commitment I asked for earlier all that is left is to go into action. Don’t get derailed moving from the idea phase into action. Your own perception of your worthiness is what will block or empower you into action. If you didn’t make the commitment, what can I say, but good luck? It is how you say it and how you do it. Share your ideas in public and gain increased stature for yourself and your business. It is a fun way to boost your business. Learn how to sell your speak services to trade associations and professional societies

Additional Resources: Toastmasters International  —  National Speakers Association