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Month September 2015

The guy who came in from the cold

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So you’ve got to hand it to them. The Red Cross do an awesome job both globally and locally. And the other day when they cold called for donations, my daughter (and boss) Julie wanted to give the guy a job. Because he was brilliant.

 

Cold calling is just about the world’s most terrifying part of being in sales. Up there with the fear of public speaking, most people would choose to do almost anything else if they could to avoid it. The fear of rejection is a huge thing. But this Red Cross guy, well he was all over it. Calling late one afternoon, he had Julie convinced he was one of our clients. Opening with a bit of general chit chat, Julie was primed to listen to what he said next. And of course he was after a donation. A donation to help fund a phone service where lonely people stuck at home get a daily call from a Red Cross volunteer. While a worthwhile cause, Julie responded by letting him know we have our own charitable arm. But he was ready for all the usual reasons why not and countered with some brilliant arguments that left Julie no where to go. ‘That’s okay, we can talk about your own individual contribution’. Following up with ideas of it being Julie’s Grandma stuck at home alone she just couldn’t say no.

 

So impressed by the brilliance of his call, Julie agreed to a donation.

And afterward wished she’d asked him if he wanted a job.

 

Cold calls are notoriously unpopular for both the caller and target. But there are ways to make the job so much more effective, leaving both parties with a good feeling. Stop thinking of them as cold calls for instance. Warm yourself up before you even begin. Smile, stretch and stand or sit in a power position. Get your own mindset set for success. Then pick up the phone and have a chat. Remember you’re talking to a person on the other end of the line. Imagine it’s a friend and your whole conversation changes for the better. Don’t script it. While it’s important to have some thoughts on what you want to say and how to counter objections, don’t just read it. Boring as bat shit and guaranteed to fail. And my favourite idea to counter the fear of rejection. Robert Smith suggests you lean into it. Set your target for ‘no’ responses rather than chasing the wins. As I see it, in chasing the ‘nos’ you’re under less pressure to get the ‘yes’s’ and guess what! You’ve overcome the fear and you’re enjoying yourself more which means you’re more likely to get the sale. It’s the law of reversed effect.

 

Cold calling tips aside, when was the last time you donated to a worthwhile cause? Or if finances don’t allow, how about lifting the spirits of someone you know by taking the time to call.

What’s Brewing

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So there was a show on recently about the world’s most expensive food. Coffee at $700 per cup for instance. So rare because it is eaten and pooed out by a critter in the Sumatran jungle as part of the processing. Needless to say a flavour all of its own. Or the Beluga caviar at over $50,000 per tin. So pricey because you have to wait 12 years to get your first eggs. Or then there’s the ice-cream made from melting glaciers in Africa or you might prefer the gold leaf from Dubai at over $1000 per scoop.

 

But of course if you’d prefer a meal in the world’s most expensive restaurant, you are welcome to book a seat at nearly $3000 per person. And you’ll have to fly there.

 

Prices like these show there’s more than enough money to go round. And it’s not just in the food industry. How about the client who rang me yesterday. Bored on a Tuesday afternoon so thought he’d go out shopping and buy a bit of furniture. Came home with a Ferrari all because his ‘old’ Audi needed new tyres.

 

Quite an insight into how the other half live isn’t it.

 

But the thing is there’s a market for it and smart people are positioning themselves to be in the business of selling to the people who can afford to buy. And making a handsome profit in the process. And while some people will sit in judgement of the lavishness of this lifestyle, it pays to remember that the wealthy are sharing their fortune with those ready to receive it every time they make a purchase.

 

It’s an exchange of value.

 

When money’s not an issue, the rich are looking for something else. An experience. A story. And any astute entrepreneur will see the opportunity to fill that gap.

 

Really it’s all about choice. The choices we make that bring money and opportunity our way. Or keep us struggling. And whether our choices are conscious or not, we are all making them, all the time. We can choose to be judgemental about the way other people live. Or we can choose to be in the business that provides goods and services to the rich and famous. It just takes a bit of know how, a good strategy and the confidence and mindset to make it happen.

 

We spent the last week with our business clients doing just that. Developing their entrepreneurial skills as they create profitable solutions to other people’s needs. And it’s exciting times.

 

The world is your oyster. There are some great opportunities out there. And who knows, maybe one day you’ll be the one ordering the caviar. After all, that’s how my client got his Ferrari.

 

What are you waiting for?

Cybersmart

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It’s expensive being a loudmouth. How about the Orange student fined $105,000 for badmouthing a teacher on twitter. Or the Sydney couple fined $15,000 for a facebook post that suggested a neighbour may or may not be related to Satan. And that’s just for starters.

 

The thing is being a keyboard warrior is a pretty dumb way of dealing with your personal issues. Because once posted those words are there for the world to see for a long, long time. And if you really p*ss someone off it can be very expensive.

 

With the world changing at lightening speed, now more than ever we need to develop emotional intelligence. And while teens with only half a brain really need to learn these skills, it seems quite a few adults do too. Because behaving badly online is just not smart. Not only won’t it sort out your problems, it can cause even bigger ones.

 

So what are some of the tools we can teach our kids?

 

What EQ tools can we learn for ourselves?

 

One of the most important tools to master is the GAP. Because when you’re being emotionally intelligent it means you take a gap before you act and consider the consequences. How the other person might feel for example. Or whether your words will come back to haunt you. Or what it might cost you in terms of your own reputation. Or how to work out a better way to deal with the issue. Emotional intelligence means you might stop to walk a mile in the other person’s shoes rather than just sledging them. Maybe they’re acting like a jerk because something is going on for them that you have no knowledge of. Or maybe you’ve just got the bull by the tail and haven’t got the whole story anyway. Being emotionally intelligent may mean that you deal with your dirty laundry privately and upfront. Rather than air it in front of the world. Emotional intelligence may mean that you find a way to forgive someone for being a jerk rather than let them get control over how you feel. After all, the way we choose to respond is always our choice.

 

Feelings come and go. But words sent out into cyberspace have the potential to stick around for years to come. Because mud sticks. And the only winners in the increase in online defamation cases are the lawyers.

 

Emotional intelligence is one of life’s greatest skills. Not only can it save you a lot of grief it helps you create a lot more happiness.

 

So how can you develop your emotional intelligence?