4 Ideas on Building Your Contact Network in a Company

During my time as a Dale Carnegie instructor, I’ve had the opportunity to address questions about building a solid contact network for business professionals. Many questions came from salespeople who, in their cold calling campaigns, wanted a method for building their contact network without sounding too “salesy”.
In general, salespeople wanted to know:

6 Phrases That Hinder Your Communication Process

“IT’S NOT A  BOOK! IT’S A WEAPON! A weapon aimed right at the hearts and minds of the weak and the desperate. It will give us control of them. If we want to rule more than one small, town, we have to have it. People will come from all over, they’ll do exactly what I tell ’em if the words are from the book. It’s happened before and it’ll happen again. All we need is that book.” -Carnegie, The Book of Eli
Here’s another phone call example using a poor communication process pulled from my early days in lead generation. I’m sure you’ve all had similar encounters.
He was the vice president of an architectural firm, and I called him once a week for 6 months.  I always managed to either get his voicemail or his administrative assistant.  She was always cordial and polite when she took my information. And she always told me she would relay my message when I spoke to her.  But on this particular day in August when I called, she let me in on a secret.

Show Appreciation Through Social Media

In my early days of selling Dale Carnegie,  corporate gave us a set of marketing phrases to promote the programs. These suggestions included phrases like, “It’s time to get human again” and “cut the screen time and get more face time.”
I could easily see that these were statements positioned social media and technology as our competition. The underlying message was clear: one or the other, but not both.

Sales Words That Weaken Your Sales Opening

“Good evening, ladies and gentlemen. We are tonight’s entertainment! I only have one question. Where is Harvey Dent? … You know where I can find Harvey? I need to talk to him about something, *just* something little.” -Joker, The Dark Knight
Capture Your Prospect’s Attention By Removing This Word From Your Sales Opening
I monitor several sales blogs and newsletters to stay on top of what other sales gurus are teaching.  Recently I received a sales newsletter that brought up a point I learned back when I was undergoing my NLP certification.

4 Social Media Listening Tips From The Dale Carnegie Course

“CQ, CQ, this is W9GFO. Is anybody out there?” -Ellie Arroway, Contact
Dale Carnegie’s Principles in Social Media: Be A Good Listener
In communications today, everyone makes a big deal of how to correctly use social media to interact effectively with their prospects and clients. It almost seems like everyone sees social media as an new and groundbreaking communication ability.
However, social media is simply a new conduit that allows people to communicate and share information with other people.
And that’s the key. If we look at social media as a way to communicate with people, then the human relations and communication principles still apply.

Boost Your Social Networks Using Dale Carnegie Principles

I’m sorry. This is the fun-vee. The hum-drum-vee is back there. -Tony Stark, Iron Man
LinkedIn. Twitter. Facebook.
If you want to get noticed in today’s business environment, you need to be active on these three social networks.
In fact, something I heard was if you were using social networks for sales and marketing, you have to play by a different set of rules.
Well, I just came across some findings that would suggest otherwise.

Pausing and Responding – A Communication Tactic Applied to Email

Captain, since we have seen that death is the one reality in this situation, I seriously suggest you reseat yourself immediately, without moving a muscle of either hand. If I remember correctly, that would involve you in what was called ‘the fast draw’. It initiated unfortunate events. -Spock, Star Trek: Spectre of the Gun
I had an interesting revelation when I started working in technical support. In this example, I learned the value of pausing and responding over quickly reacting.
In this incident, a customer had contacted me for some technical advice on repairing their system. It was nothing major. Their system had experienced some downtime and the local tech team had repaired the system.
However, they were looking for additional ideas on how to address the cause of the problem and prevent future downtime. So they sent me an email asking for my input.

Twitter Impersonation – Discover Who Is Using Your Profile

“I know I’m human. And if you were all these things, then you’d just attack me right now, so some of you are still human. This thing doesn’t want to show itself, it wants to hide inside an imitation. It’ll fight if it has to, but it’s vulnerable out in the open. If it takes us over, then it has no more enemies, nobody left to kill it. And then it’s won.” -MacReady, The Thing
Twitter Impersonation – Is Someone Scraping Your Profile?
Twitter impersonation is something I’ve been seeing with increasing frequency. And recently, I’ve had to personally deal with it.
In one instance, a member of my Twitter audience sent out a message stating that a rogue account was impersonating her. The rogue account had copied her profile picture, her header picture, her bio, her name, and about 90 percent of her twitter handle (the replaced the last few characters of her handle with dashes). It was in the process of contacting her followers to “appropriate them”.

Data Backup Basics To Give You Peace Of Mind

“They took our backups. They took the backups of our backups. They were extremely thorough.” -Jane Foster, Thor
 
Windows 8 Laptop Won’t Finish Booting Up
Here’s a situation I recently encountered. About a week ago I got a call from my dry cleaner, Fred. He said his Windows 8 system wasn’t booting up. When we spoke, he was on edge, and understandably so. The main application on his machine is Quickbooks and he uses the machine to run his business.
Upon hearing this, the first question I asked him was if he had his data backup in a safe place. He said, “Yeah. The girl who does the books saves the database out to the drive about once every month.”

Communication Skills are Required For Cold Calling

A few days ago, I got a call from someone trying to enroll me  in one of their online educational programs.  Typically, I don’t have problem with this.  After all, a week before the call, I had clicked on a web page advertisement indicating I was looking for information about online universities.
By now, everyone knows this is a marketing play.  It’s a way for organizations to get your information into their CRM and nurture people who are interested in their products and services.  In today’s environment, if you aren’t incorporating this into your marketing process you are behind the times.  It’s a cost-effective way to get prospects to select themselves and show their interest in what you are offering.

Sales Call Review – 3 Sales Ideas For Your Next Sales Call

“…you’re looking too closely. And what have I been telling you all night? The closer you look, the less you see.” -J. Daniel Atlas, Now You See Me
Here’s a review of a sales call where I was a customer and a sales coach. As we review this sales call, look for similarities in your own sales process and determine if you can use the 3 sales ideas listed below.

Professional Development Prevents Workforce Automation Obsolescence

“You know, I have… I have never felt this way before – at odds with… the ship. I sat there and watched my ship perform for a mass of circuits and relays, and felt… useless. Unneeded.” -Captain James T. Kirk, Star Trek: The Ultimate Computer
 
I found this article at the end of November discussing how workforce automation is changing the employment landscape.
The article is a CNN review of a McKinsey report on learning, jobs, and technology. In this report, the author states that by 2030, automation will take over about 375 million jobs. This means in 12 years, a machine will probably have replace you and you’ll have to change jobs or maybe even change careers.

Tips To Make Your Next Team Presentation Run Smoothly

“The concept of waiting bewilders me. There are always deadlines. There are always ticking clocks.” -Whiterose, Mr Robot
I’ve been a long-standing member of Toastmasters, using my time there to practice various presentation styles and techniques. In fact, if you want to practice your communication skills, Toastmasters is a great place to do so.
Toastmasters is also an organization where beginners can learn to overcome one of the biggest fears plaguing professionals – public speaking.
So, if you visit a Toastmasters meeting, you’ll see speakers perform a variety of presentations, including the team presentation.

Windows 10 Update – Create an Environment That Supports You

“Their operating system is a mess. Thank goodness I remember DOS.” -Dr. Rodney McKay, Stargate: Atlantis
 
It’s time, Honey!
Yep! The Windows 10 Fall Creators update (1709) is now available and is being pushed out to all Windows 10 installs. Of course, not all at the same time. So, if you want to get this thing done as soon as possible, you’ll have to take matters into your own hands.

Digital Automation Is Weakening Your Communication Skills

“I like to be reminded this city survives because of these machines. These machines keep us alive, while other machines are coming to kill us. Interesting, isn’t it? The power to give life, and the power to end it.” -Councillor Harmann, The Matrix Reloaded
Digital Automation Has Benefits And Detriments
I had an interesting revelation the other morning.
There I was, standing near the checkout in the Giant Eagle in Dublin. I was picking up some breakfast croissants and coffee before heading in to continue packing up our office equipment.

Create a Customer Profile To Boost Your Sales

“The 21st century is a digital book. Zola told HYDRA how to read it. Your bank records, medical histories, voting patterns, emails, phone calls, your damn SAT scores! Zola’s algorithm evaluates people’s past to predict their future.” -Jasper Sitwell, Captain America: The Winter Soldier
 
Back in 2010, I partnered with two of my tech associates to provide hosted VoIP services to SOHO businesses. One afternoon, my sales partner, Mike, and I performed a service review with a small business owner providing local IT consulting. Like any sales meeting, we discussed his office environment and his current business issues.  We also looked at what he wanted for the future growth of his company and how it would impact his team.

10 Tips to Increase Your Learning Power

“It took us centuries to learn that it doesn’t have to take centuries to learn.” -Anij, Star Trek: Insurrection
The Mind-Body Connection: Boosting your Learning Ability Through Physical Exercise
When I was doing sales for a tech storage company, sales gurus were constantly telling us to be lifelong learners. They said things like our earning power was directly tied to our learning power. And that we should commit ourselves to lifelong learning because the most valuable asset we possess is our minds.

Common Sense Quotes and Past Corporate Wisdom

Man may be able to evolve a thousand-fold through this technology, but the rush must be tempered with wisdom.  –Dr. Lawrence Angelo, The Lawnmower Man
I was going through some old documents from my time in a high tech corporate environment when I came across these quotes of wisdom my engineering colleagues and I circulated among ourselves.  I’m sure these quotes are still making the rounds today in some form in other companies.
Use what you can…

Memory Recall – More Dale Carnegie Course Mind Hacks

“I can carry nearly eighty gigs of data in my head.” -Johnny Mnemonic, Johnny Mnemonic

Session 1 in the Dale Carnegie Course Develops Self Confidence Through Memory Recall
There I was, driving along I-275 in Cincinnati at 8:30 in the morning. “Jimmy”, one of my partners in a small VoIP consultancy, was finishing up a phone call in the shotgun seat. We drove for about a minute in silence, watching the hills pass. Suddenly, “Jimmy” turns to me and says, “Remind me to call Bob at ABC Company today.”
Now, I had both hands on the wheel and my attention was on the road.  On the other hand, “Jimmy” had both hands free and could focus his attention on anything he wanted. So why was he asking me to remind him to do something when he could simply write it down?

Zyxel NAS540 Quick Fix For Operational Hum

Mr. Scott, I understand you’re having difficulty with the warp drive. How much time do you require for repair? -Captain Spock, Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country
While writing my next sales process post for PRSPX, I was feeling a little un-directed and unmotivated. For me, that typically means it’s time to build or fix something. So, I opted for a quick fix for the Zyxel NAS540.

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