Monthly Archives: January 2017

How to Ruin a Good Compliment


Have you ever been “praised” by someone who ended up making you feel as if you had failed?

 “You did such a great job with that customer, BUT you still have to learn to follow procedure”

The only part that you remember is after the “BUT”.

 “You were top sales person last month. Great job!  When I started working here, I was top for 6 months straight.  If you can keep it up you will be as good as me.”

It is all about me.

 “Way to go! You didn’t screw it up this time!” 

Not so funny is it?

 “Great Job! You Rock!”

That’s nice, but what did I do that was so great that I rocked?

 Nobody wants to be “that” boss, but our best efforts at giving positive feedback are often perceived in a much different way than we meant them.

How can we give praise that is effective and will encourage more behavior that is positive?

Rules for positive feedback

Do it Now – Positive praise is like produce it get stale when delayed for to long, so give positive feedback as close to the event as possible. 

In Public and In Private –Praise in public, criticize in private; however before you go singing a person’s praises from the rafters, think about what they would prefer. Public praise of an extremely shy person may cause an emotional response that overshadows your good intentions.

Make sure it is specific – The best positive feedback is sincere and specific. Tell the person exactly what they did and how it

 The praise should match the accomplishment – Hold the balloon drop and brass band for common achievements. Over the top with rewards can look like the proverbial Cookie for being a good boy or girl.

Spread the love – Make sure that you praise positive behavior evenly and limit the perception of “favorites”.

Mind the Middle – Top performers tend to get the praise and bottom performers get there share of attention too, but what about the middle?  The person who moves from below average to above average has made progress that often is overlooked.

Well placed, specific, positive praise builds confidence, loyalty and engagement in your team members. Think of it as a lever that will allow you t move your team towards success.

 Contact me to find out more about how I can work with you and your team to develop your coaching and leadership skills, so that you can move your team to the next level.

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The Most Dangerous Lies (are the ones we tell ourselves)


If we all really listen to the voice deep down inside us, we know what we should be doing. We know our purpose in life.

Maybe you have a book to write or a song to sing.  Maybe you are body builder, runner or swimmer, trapped in the body of a couch potato. Perhaps it is a list of little things such as, forgive someone, volunteer or take a trip. Perhaps you dare not tell anyone else, but you know there are things that you are here on this earth to do.

What is holding you back?  What keeps you from accomplishing the things that you know deep down that you were born to do?  Is it circumstances? Money? Time? The economy? Your family?

The only thing holding you back is……you.


“We all walk in the dark and each of us must learn
to turn on his or her own light.”

Earl Nightingale

Perhaps it is time to hug your monster, face your gremlins and take a little more control. You know. Do the things that you fear, but you know you want/need to accomplish. In life, unless we’re prepared to take chances, we’re just fans in the bleachers. We never truly get in the game.

Paul Martinelli, one of my mentors often says that sometimes we have to jump off cliffs and build our wings on the way down.

What stops us? The fear of failure? The uncertainty? I believe that what holds us back is that part of our brain that we have no control over. That reflexive “fight or flight” system served our ancestors well by keeping them from danger keeps us from moving forward.

Our fear is 99% illusion. We concoct scary stories about the worst possible outcomes. In an effort to protect ourselves, we lay the template of the worst outcomes that we ever heard of, but if we are intellectually honest with ourselves, we know that those outcomes are not very likely.

“If you take risks, you may still fail. However, if you do not take risks, you will surely fail.

The greatest risk of all is to do nothing.”
Roberto C. Goizuet

We always have the option to create new stories filled with positive outcomes and results. Stop the pattern of irrational fear and do what is in our best interest. 

In our modern life we need to learn to use a more the part of our brain that we have more control over. When we face our fears, we either succeed or we do not succeed, but regardless we will learn and gain confidence in our abilities. When you turn and face your gremlins, they can no longer chase you. Now that is freedom.


Phil is one of only one thousand leaders worldwide (representing nearly 100 countries) to be trained and certified by John C. Maxwell & his team, as part of the founder’s circle of coaches, speakers and teachers.

 Phil works with organizations and individuals to increase sales, productivity and profitability by helping them improve their leadership, sales and customer service skills. He offers workshops, seminars, speaking, and coaching on delivering extraordinary customer service, leadership, and personal development.

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