Friday, May 30, 2014

Default Setting

Sales is a default career for millions.

Often for the extrovert who never learned how to do anything that people would pay them for in an open market. College campuses are littered with young people- often there on their parent’s dime- who have little trouble making friends but will leave school with zero marketable skills. They will be contacting you soon at your place of business with some amazing offer. As the adage goes, I personally didn’t dream of one day being a salesman.

Which brings me to this. Almost everything ever written on Selling- ESPECIALLY on the ultra-sleazy subject of closing techniques- is horse poop. What they’re really attempting to teach is manipulation techniques. This is the primary reason so many people loathe the image that is the salesman. Or they simply break into a full sprint at sight or sound of live one.

There are hundreds of things that successful people do in sales that don’t involve manipulation- covert or otherwise. Most of it is just doing the work. But the articles and the books keep talking about how to close people. A headline in the current Boston Business Journal prompted this post.

For you Liberal Arts Majors who haven’t the faintest idea on how you’ll earn your daily bread post college, please read and heed the following:

1.)If you choose to intentionally manipulate (or worse), just know your comeuppance is inevitable. And the misery will be unimaginable. Your trail of quarry will one day be surpassed by coming face-to-face with what you are and the pointlessness of your life's "work". (Strong enough?..I’m dead serious). The annals of history are full of these guys, business or otherwise.

2.)If you chose to do it honestly, pick a product or service there is a real market for. At times, you will be required to ask people for their business, but only after it is abundantly clear it’s logical and beneficial for them to do so. The prospective buyer is often nervous and they’ve worked themselves into a lather to where they've concluded that making NO DECISION is the safe thing to do. If they’re still unable or unwilling to decide, just move on. You'll save them and yourself from a shi#load of unnecessary agitation.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Four Hours

Nobody enjoys being around others who ceaselessly complain and espouse pessimism. They’re BRUTAL. All future therapists will be required to tend bar for 2 years when I’m anointed King. Bartenders hear more misery in a single shift than you’ll hear in two months.

But how about people who are their opposite?

You say to them- out of social norms and politeness “How are you?” and they practically jump out of their britches with “fabulous!!”. I’m not speaking of the rare enlightened people who truly are at peace with the world. I speak of those who are committed to public unbridled optimism, regardless of how they might really feel. Oh, their true self will surface from time-to-time and it is a VOLCANO of hurt. You can usually find them an hour later in the self-help section at Barnes and Noble.

Though I RUN from people who insist on sharing their doom/gloom worldview, I also tend to walk briskly away from the chirpy turn that frown upside down minions. Because I think it’s not who they really are. I think it’s their way of coping but it comes off as super phony.

They’ll never be confused with those who radiate warmth and a very real inner-peace. These folks tend to be on the quiet side. They never offer unsolicited advice; they know you have to find your own way. If you vent in their direction, they typically offer a polite smile and agree- often without words- that life can be a real bear at times. You’ll never hear them offer how amazing everything is. They’re neither optimists, pessimists or realists. They have been through an awful lot and don’t pretend that things aren’t painful sometimes. They appreciate the hell out of things that the rest of us take for granted, including but not limited to:

• A comfortable and warm bed
• Not being in any type of physical pain
• A hot meal that tastes pretty good
• The everyday conveniences of the developed world
• A wide variety of entertainment choices
• The health and wellbeing of the people closest to them

You can’t make it a goal to be at peace- It does not work. Our goal-oriented culture has created much of this unhappiness in the first place- it has taught us the never being satisfied is a good thing. Big Pharma loves this mindset- it’s the gift that keeps on giving. In an era of unmatched prosperity and the comfort and conveniences that SHOULD go with it, the U.S. and the rest of the developed world ingests tens of billions of dollars’ worth of mood medications every year.

Why do you think that is?

Never Be Satisfied and- while you’re at it- ask your doctor about Paxil. Its side effects may include a sense of wellbeing that * may last up to four hours.

*Not to be confused with that other med that may give your four hours of awkwardness.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Times are NOT a ‘Changin

Oh, Bob Dylan…you little rascal. You keep writing music and you don’t look a day older than your 104 years of age. You may remember-or read- that Bob wrote in the 1960’s that Times Were a ‘Changin. More on that in a bit.

I’m guilty of writing about The World As It Should Be as opposed to The World As It is.
Mostly I do it because I’m trying to be amusing but I’m also guilty of defaulting to talk instead of taking action. My wife could tell you a little about this.

Apparently, I can’t be bothered to altering the course of human history because important things have presented themselves- such as my inability to find the remote control or reading extensively about why uber gazillionaire Jamie Dimon of JP Morgan recently purchased an exo-solar planet. (Excellent Milky Way views, move-in ready!).

To my millions of readers- Jamie Dimon didn’t really buy a planet, though he has that type of cake.

So which world do you live in? The World As It Should Be or The World As It Is?

Many would say the former is the domain of the political Liberal and the latter the political Conservative.

Some incredibly special people throughout history have brought justice to glaring and various human-created inequalities. Whether Gandhi or Martin Luther King or dozens before and after them, their energy was mobilized and would not be silenced. The World As It Is was unacceptable and they had the courage of their convictions. More importantly, they walked the freakin’ talk which separates them from myself and the rest of the world. Virtually all of their modern-day brethren however just offer their opinion or write editorials..or whine to nobody in particular…that’s their contribution to righting what’s wrong. This describes about 99.999999% of today’s elected officials. They love, love, LOVE talking about change. And they are followed around by legions of IDIOTS who cheer them on and wear silly hats and launch confetti and say my guy will bring change!! Wheeeeeeee!!!

The overwhelming majority of people who live in The World As It Is have ZERO motivation to change it. Many were born into great wealth and privilege. Many were born into poverty and were determined to escape it- often by any means necessary. They see human nature as a constant and unchangeable. Are they wrong? I, for one, don’t know. I think this group of people tends to be slightly more at peace than the former. Slightly.

The 1960’s in The United States brought us many things. Including but not limited to: a bevy of new mind-altering contraband, marginal hygiene, frightening hairstyles and music so esoteric, eclectic (and loud) that only its creators knew for sure it was actually a form of music. But it also brought a significant amount of people who didn’t just talk about change but actually did something about it.

We could all use a use a little of that 60’s mojo nowadays- just remember running water, soap and shampoo is available.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Let's cut the Horsebleep

Nothing about business, jobs or any of other stuff I typically blather on about.

Today I will lay waste to a couple of brutally overused platitudes and sacred cows- and I will enjoy it.

Ya never know.

Bullshit. You often know, you FRQUENTLY KNOW, you almost always know. When an outcome has overwhelming evidence on how it will turn out, people feel the need to fill the uncomfortable unease and silence. A suggestion: just say nothing. Let your facial expression communicate what you and others feel. We don't always get what we want and that's OK. Someone invariably will utter that magical pearl. Save it. Silence is OK.

Everything happens for a reason.

Says who??...the organized religion assigned to you? Probably but just as likely you feel the need to say something about the unpleasantness at hand. What would be the reason for the most unspeakable acts of human cruelty? Fact is, we don't know but I don't like the assertion that it happens for a reason- especially when the victim(s) suffer a fate beyond words and an unattached, unaffected observer reflexively offers this up. Zip it and feel your common humanity with this poor person. An exponentially greater service than empty words.

Now more than ever.

Advertisers LOVE this one. More than during The Great Depression? More than when the world was at war? More than when famine and disease ravaged huge sections of the world? Oh, you mean now that people are so consumed with their largely self-created life dramas and wouldn't know real hardship if it bit them in the ass? PURCAHSE THIS PRODUCT I'M

This is what they would have wanted.

After someone's passing, this one is definitely coming. Let's be clear: This is what YOU WANTED. Whether or not the deceased wanted it is unknown, but this is clearly what YOU WANTED. Even if this person was your spouse of 50 years, you don't know (though, in this instance, you've more than earned the right to say whatever the hell you want).

Our thoughts and prayers go out to…

99% of the people who say or write this do neither and soon return to whatever important activity they were engaged in- such as refreshing their Facebook page to see if anyone commented on their heartfelt line about how they were apparently sending out prayers....or if anyone liked their 479th posted public picture of themselves.