Archive | April, 2010

27 April 2010 ~ 0 Comments

precision

precision

You want something done by someone by sometime. Yeh, let’s go do that. WHAT???

When you need people to do something, be very specific. Set a goal or objective and give it a deadline. Make it quantifiable and something that can be measured.

If there is a destination, people can go on a journey. People will go on a journey. This is ultimately what motivates people to be part of something.

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25 April 2010 ~ 1 Comment

situation not people

situation not people

In the 1990 movie “Pump Up The Volume”, Christian Slater’s character Mark (Hard Harry) in one of his pirate radio sessions is trying to talk a caller into not killing himself as he’d threatened to do.

“You’re having a perfectly normal reaction to a f**ked up situation”. The kid’s parents were splitting up and he was blaming himself.

People react to what’s around them. Rarely does the person ever change but the situation around them can, and does, frequently.

If you are trying to do something and a person you need isn’t playing along, don’t blame the person. Look at the situation and circumstances surrounding the person to figure out why they are acting or reacting the way that they are.

What changes can you make to their situation to change how they feel about doing what you need them to? Small changes are usually all that’s ever needed.

Never blame the person. People rarely ever deliberately want to do the wrong thing. They’re only reacting to the situation around them.

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20 April 2010 ~ 0 Comments

whose?

whose?

Other people are great at creating or being a problem. In fact, they’re the best. You see it every day.

What if, hypothetically, you took one of those problems (pick any one) and looked at it as you causing this problem?

Now it’s your fault. What would you do to fix it?

Do that with every problem. In the future you can look back at how much you have fixed.

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11 April 2010 ~ 0 Comments

same page

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05 April 2010 ~ 0 Comments

postscript: journey

postscript: journey

It’ll turn most bad commercial situations into something better. It shows a level of caring beyond anything an email or empty sales gesture can. It starts people talking and it’s worth talking about.

From Collin on Delta Flight 9857, my return flight from Buffalo/Toronto last week… a handwritten note.

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04 April 2010 ~ 0 Comments

journey

journey

This was meant to be a routine business trip to Toronto. Car, airport routine, hotel, office and back.
But things went wrong. Nothing catastrophic, but certainly far away from the travel routine I’m so well practiced in.
I arrived at Atlanta’s Hartsfield Jackson airport as I always do. Pulling two suitcases behind me I rode up the escalator that takes me to the check-in area.
In front of me was a man. An old man. He turned and started talking to me. Being so deep in routine I had no idea that it was me he was talking to, it was pure noise to me. He was excited. His sister was arriving from Detroit and staying with him for two weeks. He hadn’t seen her in over a year. He wasn’t just telling me he was excited, he visibly was. His expression was lit and, despite is elderly years, he edged forward like he was starting a race. His sister was nearly here!

Someone was excited to be at the airport. I’d forgotten that that was even possible.

Instead of flying directly to Toronto, I took the cheaper route this time. The eight hundred dollar cheaper route via Buffalo, New York. After picking up the rental car I headed north to the Canadian border.
Despite other people’s claims that crossing by car is far easier, I faced a hard time. Heading over at a quiet time clearly caught the border agent mid-boredom, so he picked on me (or, at least, it felt like that). Nearly an hour later I was on my way into Canada.
Almost. A few hundred yards ahead of the border crossing is a toll booth. If you didn’t already know, I work in the credit card industry. I wear the career well and no trait says I’m deeper in the industry than barely ever carrying cash.
As luck would have it, there’s a well placed ATM inside an currency exchange in between the toll booth and the border. In the same way as the rest of my day was going, the ATM wasn’t accepting my cards.
The final resort was to head over to the duty free store right on the border. The lady in the store started guiding me back across the border to local ATMs that may work (she had no idea the border crossing hell I’d just been through), when one of her co-workers asked me how much the toll was. He looked like he was just finishing up his shift. He headed through to the back of the store and came back with $3.75 and gave it to me.
He had no idea who I was, where I’d come from or where I was going (except it was via the tollbooth I had no cash for, of course). He didn’t want to know either. I asked how I can pay him back and he told me to “make sure you help someone else, pass it on”.

Someone helped a total stranger with no expectation of something in return. I didn’t know that still happened in the world.

With the toll crossed, the bulk of the week continued as expected. Met some fascinating business people (who are also exceptionally successful) I’d never met before, hung out with the gang in the Toronto office and connected with customers. Then it was time to head back home.
Despite fearing the 407 toll being applied to my National car rental (with $10 convenience fee – their convenience, not mine), I managed to avoid toll roads and made it across the border and back to Buffalo with no excitement.
There’s so few ways to describe the feeling of heading home. Triumph, relief and comfort all wrapped up together. As I stood at the Delta gate listening to announcements of a flight delay that was promoted to a full cancellation, I knew the promise I’d made to my kids that I would see them that night was about to be broken.
Cancellation turned into a Delta-sponsored stay at a nearby hotel of their choice. With the airline industry having lost its way financially, this manifested itself as a sleepover in the local Days Inn. It was roughly the same time as this happened that I also confirmed a long thought suspicion that I’m a closet snob.
In what felt like an episode of Lost, a collection of people I didn’t know when i woke up that morning who were all traveling on the same flight, and therefore were all stranded, all started to talk.
There was the 17 year old with a guitar who was traveling on his own for the first time. A businessman from Montreal with a very heavy French accent who had been on his way to tee off at 8am on a course in Palm Springs. An Interior Designer who works for IKEA who was heading to Oklahoma City to see and surprise her mom who’d fell ill just days before.
Everyone had a story and a purpose. Everyone wanted to be somewhere else, but instead was involuntarily stuck in Buffalo New York for the night. Had the plane left on time and not been cancelled, all of these people would have simply passed by on the periphery of my mission to reach home.

Every day is a school day. Instead of bitching and complaining about not getting home and having to stay in a Days Inn, which is what I’d usually do, I met some pretty cool people and learned a little more about the world.

So what? For every circumstance you face each day you have the choice of keeping your head down and ignoring it or looking up and making the most of it. Look up.

Bon voyage.

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02 April 2010 ~ 0 Comments

rocktoon – R.I.P.

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01 April 2010 ~ 0 Comments

profit and loss

profit and loss

More often than most realize: the fundamental core of business is thrown out the window when a fire needs doused, an issue needs taken care of or a topic has a committee thrown at it.

We have to invest time, people, effort and resources into things that will bring us more money. Only these things. Anything else is against the very core of maintaining a healthy and growing business.

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