Category Archives: Business

Connection, Clarity and Congratulations


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My friend and mentor Scott Fay uses the words Purpose, Passion, and Plan as part of his mission statement. They paint a strong picture of the principles that Scott and his business stand for. Using words all starting with the same letter is a great way to make a point that stick with an audience.

In the past when speaking, I have used:

  • Three  Es Energy, Enthusiasm and Empathy
  • Three  Fs Faith, Family, and Friends
  • Three  Ls Live, Love, and Laugh

Today I want to share my Three Cs for leaders (and sales people) to illustrate that all influence and success begins with serving others.

Connection – To lead or influence others leaders (and sales people) must make personal connections with those they hope to influence. People do business with and follow people that they “Know Like and Trust”. It is the leader’s (and sales person’s) job to make that happen.  John Maxwell said it best in The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership. “Leaders must touch a heart before asking for a hand.”

Clarity: Leaders (and sales people) must communicate a clear picture. They must cast a strong vision that includes all parties involved. They must set proper expectations and provide the tools that are needed to accomplish them. If followers understand the organization’s goals, how important they are to the mission they will accomplish amazing things. Remember that excellence begins with expectations. (I need another E to go with those two.)

 Congratulations: Great leaders are never stingy with recognition. They do it publicly and often. They give people an excellent reputation and expect that people live up to that reputation. Praise must be specific and tied back to the goal or mission. Three of the most important word that a leader can use are “I appreciate you.” They must be followed with what was done and how it affected the mission or goal.

 Have you ever had a leader who lived up to these Three Cs?  Please share your comments. I would love to hear more.

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.
He is an experienced leader who brings a passionate, positive approach to developing people, driving sales through delivering outstanding customer service.
Phil can bring training on leadership, service and personal growth to your organization.

 

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


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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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It’s about the people stupid


Peter Drucker, one of the best-known and most widely influential thinkers and writers on the subject of management theory and practice, has been quoted as saying “A company’s primary responsibility is to serve its customers. Profit is not the primary goal, but rather an essential condition for the company’s continued existence.” 

Franklin Roosevelt once said “If you treat people right they will treat you right — ninety percent of the time.” And Barbara Bush admonished us to “Never lose sight of the fact that the most important yardstick of your success will be how you treat other people – your family, friends, and coworkers, and even strangers you meet along the way.”

 My mentor John Maxwell says that “Leadership is influence, nothing more nothing less.”

So what does this tell us?  To me it says that business is about people. The people who work there, the people that they serve and the people who lead them are what will make or break an organization.

Business is no longer about who has the lowest price, or even the biggest market share.” Business is now built on relationships and how we treat our employees, our customers and our peers.

What can you do as a leader?

  • Take responsibility for your own personal development. Focus on leadership, communications and becoming a person who intentionally connects with others.
  • Lead by example. Set the standards then meet of exceed them yourself.
  • Don’t just offer to help, really help. Never make people beg for your assistance as their leader.
  • Ask yourself daily, Who and How can I add value today?
  • Always value attitude over talent.  Give me will over skill.  I will take a team of average talent over a handful of super stars any day of the week.
  • Remember “It’s about the people stupid”

To become more than “the boss” people follow only because they are required to, you have to master the ability to invest in people and inspire them. I can help you do just that through training, group and individual coaching and speaking at your event. Please leave your comments and if I can add value to you or your organization please contact me.

About Phil

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 trainers, coaches and speakers. As a John Maxwell Certified Coach, Teacher and Speaker, he can offer you workshops, seminars, speaking, and coaching, aiding your personal and professional growth through study and practical application of John’s proven leadership methods.

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Most Hear – Few Listen


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A person who reports to you has a problem. They knock on your door to ask if you have a minute. They tell you about their situation and you know exactly what the solution is. Feeling really smart, you give them the answer, save the day and send them on their way. The next week they are back with the same type of problem expecting you to solve it for them.

Your biggest customer calls you and explains that your proposal is not exactly what he or she needed and that they have chosen another vendor. You were sure that you had the best product and price yet the competition has the order.

Your teenager looks at you as if you are from Mars, when you tell them that they cannot have a smart phone just because all of their friends do. You don’t understand why they do not get it. After all, you have explained your position several times.

“Listen Learn and Lead” John C Maxwell

To influence others we must be genuinely interested in people. Understanding their prospective can make all the difference. If our ears work we can all hear, yet effective listening is one of the rarest and most important skills. It is a learned behavior.

How do we make that connection? Make more sales? Have greater influence?

Look at the speakerNot your phone, computer or the TV. Give them your undivided attention. (Preaching to myself on this one) 

Listen more than you talkOverall, in a one on one conversation, attempt to listen 75% of time – speak 25% of time. If you are in a meeting of several people you should do even less talking. One definition of a bore is a person who is talking when you want him to listen. 

Be genuinely interested in their thoughts, opinion and experiences. – We each have our own map of the world. You weren’t with them every second of their life so learn all you can from everyone you meet.

Do not think about what to say while you are also trying to listen to the speaker. – I know you have a speedy brain and lots to do, but your brain can easily leave the speaker behind and you will miss critical points. Trust that you will know how to respond to the speaker when the speaker is done.

Listen for the central ideas, not for all the facts.Experienced listeners develop a sense for noticing the most important themes and ideas from their employees. If you notice the major ideas, then often the facts “come along” with those ideas. 

Let the speaker finish. Do not interrupt – When they are done pause and then respond.

Ask questions, reflect back and ask if you are hearing accurately. – Try this. “So help me understand” or “If I hear you correctly your biggest concern is….”

Regularly share indications that you are listening to them. Those indications can be, for example, nodding your head, saying, “Yes” to short points that you agree with.

Be totally present in the moment. –  Let go of your own agendas and intentions to influence, control, or direct.

 “One friend, one person who is truly understanding, who takes the trouble to listen to us as we consider a problem, can change our whole outlook on the world.”

— Dr. E. H. Mayo

 When you make a clear, conscious choice to listen without judgment, to fully learn and understand what others have to communicate, you will inspire greater trust and enjoy greater mutual respect.  Listening with your heart as well as your head and your ears will give you the right to lead and have true influence over others.

Contact me to find out more about how I can work with you and your team to develop a culture of excellent service.

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Leadership Rules from General Norman Schwarzkopf


 

General Norman Schwarzkopf.

General Norman Schwarzkopf. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

America lost a hero and a leader today. General Norman Schwarzkopf passed away. He was a leader who epitomized serve, lead, and succeed.

Despite being known for a hot temper, “Stormin’ Norman” was known for saying, “Leaders love their troops and let them know in many ways.”

I have heard that General Schwarzkopf often shared a story of an experience he had shortly after he had begun working in the Pentagon and his superior was preparing to leave for six weeks.

As his boss was heading out the door, General Schwarzkopf asked, “What am I supposed to do? I have not been here long enough to understand the entire goings on here. How should I conduct business in your absence”?

To this his superior simply responded, “Rule 13”.  “Very good, sir. Rule 13. No problem. OK, by the way, sir, Rule 13…if it is not too much trouble, what exactly is Rule 13”?

Rule #13

When placed in command, take charge. Even if the decision is bad, you have set change in motion. It is better than being stagnant. When placed in command, take charge

General Schwarzkopf’s went on to ask, “How do I to make my decisions? Should I consider what you might do? Should I take the counsel of anyone in particular”?

To this his superior responded, “Rule 14”.  “Rule 14, sir”?

Rule #14

Do what is right. It is a sign of character.Have strength of character – a prerequisite to having the courage to do the right thing. Do the right thing – have the moral courage to do the right thing.

He was recently quoted as saying, “I may have made my reputation as a general in the Army and I’m very proud of that,” he once told the AP. “But I’ve always felt that I was more than one-dimensional. I’d like to think I’m a caring human being. … It’s nice to feel that you have a purpose.”

General Norman Schwarzkopf served his country, he served his troops and he served his fellow human beings. That gave him the right to lead and others were eager to follow. That is a successful legacy.

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. http://www.johncmaxwellgroup.com/philvanover/
 
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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Get Everything You Want in Life……..


Even if you had never heard of the late Zig Ziglar before the world lost this treasure of a man last week, by now almost everyone knows his most famous quote.

 “You can get everything in life you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want.”

 I think that many people understand this to mean that if you help people buy a lot of stuff from you, you will make a “big ol’ pile of money” (That’s my best Zig Ziglar imitation)

 I believe that Zig was talking about something much deeper and much more spiritual than just moving products or services.  Here are a few points.

  •  Zig does not say that they have to get what they want from you, just that you have to help them get it.
  •  Zig was always careful to point out that the most important things in life cannot be measured in dollars. Faith, family, and attitude always take a higher position.
  • Zig does not say you will get what you want from the people you help. Most likely, you will get what you want from other unexpected places.

This quote is not just about sales. It is about life. It applies to all of us. People, companies, churches and other organizations all work best when serving others.   That is what capitalism is all about. Being rewarded for adding value to others.

I was visiting Christy Taylor at Express Employment Professionals in Rocky Mount NC a few days ago and was explaining my philosophy of Serve, Lead. and Succeed. I asked her about her business and her reply was that she believed that she was here to help the people who live in our area, help the people who work for her and help the businesses who are her clients.  Not a word about profit, market share or a “big ol’ pile of money”

 The next day Christy sent me this quote by Louise Hay “I truly believe that we are here to bless and prosper each other. I reflect this belief in my daily interactions.”  I replied that I felt it summed up our conversation very well.

Christy lives out that belief in not only the work she does for charity and volunteer work, but in the work that she does every day as part of her business.  

 Thanks Christy, for serving first, then leading others.

Serve Lead and Succeed!

The best way to be truly successful in life is to first serve, then lead.

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. http://www.johncmaxwellgroup.com/philvanover/
 
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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That’s a Great Question


The end of 2012 is racing at us faster than any of us would like to admit. I know we all have our social, work and shopping calendars full, but it is time to start preparing for next year.

In his Book Thinking for a Change, my mentor John C Maxwell says “Experience alone does not add value to a life . . . it’s the insight people gain because of their experience. . . . An experience becomes valuable when it informs or equips us to meet new experiences.” “Some of the most valuable thoughts you’ve ever had may have been lost because you didn’t give yourself the reflection time you needed.”

Find some time between now and when the big ball drops in Times Square to sit down, reflect on 2012, and set up 2013 to be your best year yet.

What makes a good question?

·        They are solution oriented.

·        They are possibility oriented.

·        They do not place blame.

·        They are clear.

·        They make you think deeper or differently.

That rules out questions such as “Why do I always have bad luck?”  “Why am I so stupid?”  “Why can’t I get what I want out of life?”  These questions lead your mind to think about all the negatives that it can dream up and send you in the wrong direction.

Here are a few good questions to get you started.

  1. What did I do that made me laugh, smile and feel alive?
  2. What were my biggest accomplishments?
  3. What was I doing when I felt most alive?
  4. What would I have done differently?
  5. What did I do that I do not want to do again?
  6. What still feels undone or incomplete to me?
  7. What did I do right? What do I feel especially good about?
  8. What was my greatest contribution?
  9. What were my biggest challenges/roadblocks/difficulties?
  10. For what am I particularly grateful?
  11. What few things could I focus on each day that would move me towards my top goals faster than anything else would?

I would love to hear your favorite questions for reflection.

Zig Ziglar

I want to close the post by noting the passing of motivational speaker and trainer Zig Ziglar this week. Zig touched and will continue to touch millions of lives. I know he touched mine.  Here are some questions he often asked audiences from the stage.

  •  If I earn millions of dollars, but destroy my health in the process, is that success?
  • If I become the best in my industry, but neglect my family and friends, is that success?
  • If I acquire great wealth and notoriety, but compromise my integrity and faith to do so, is that success?

 As a coach, I can help you sit down, review your year, and help you ask the questions to move you forward on 2013.  Contact me so that we can discuss how having a coach can move your career forward.

 

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. http://www.johncmaxwellgroup.com/philvanover/
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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