Author Archives: Paul LaRue
One thing interesting about goals and change. No matter when you initiate progress, the starting point is always the same.
Regardless if an individual or team has had years of sustained success or just barely starting out, the reference line is always the same. You start on the ground, your baseline being achievement of a new goal.
It consistently begins with a dream, goal, eye towards change or progress. No matter what success or failure has preceded it, the next step towards achievement is always knowing the big picture and then marshaling efforts and resources towards attaining it,
Knowing this starting point is key for a couple of reasons. First is knowing that past success – or failure – has no bearing whatsoever on future success. While recent success might create more confidence going in, there is never a guarantee for the next success, let alone that any foundational achievements will fundamentally ensure the next achievement.
This leads us to the second reason to know about this starting point. It should keep individuals and teams humble enough to know that everyone, every cause, every step towards progress starts all over again at this point.
Leaders have to instill trust and integrity every day en route to results. Athletes have the next competition to prepare for; even champions have to start a new season at zero just like their competition. New products and services must give way to the next enhancement or new product.
Any progress is all about perspective. Having the right perspective keeps one grounded, humble and willing to work hard towards the next worthwhile endeavor.
Start with the right perspective to increase your ability to reach the destination you’re plotting for.
“Business Is People” is what my college marketing professor – a former Del Monte Foods executive – would say.
It was a principle that his business undergraduate students all understood to be true.
So why is there such a proliferation of people reaching out to connect on social media, particularly on platforms such as LinkedIn, and after asking to connect, and quickly start making a pitch to sell to their new connection?
While the messages are different, they’re all basically the same.
“My company specializes in helping you grow your pipeline with people interested in working with you…”
“Just checking in to see when you’d be open to a quick phone call…what’s your availability like this week or next?”
“I like to make new friends and … how we could assist each other personally and business wise…”
“do you ever conduct expert interviews or surveys for your company? My company provides market research and specializes in niche audiences and finding experts for research. Happy to share more….”
With the rise of immediate solicitation of new connections, it’s no wonder there has been an increase in articles and posts that are generating awareness of this very unprofessional, and un-personal, trend.
More and more people online would rather build a relationship with you and get to a place later where a pitch could be made. In fact, one study indicated that 98% of the top sales professionals say relationships are the most important part of generating new business.
Great leaders in all professions build relationships first, and always before they ask for the sale. That is if they ever ask for the sale. Sometimes they aren’t connecting with you because they want something from you. These great leaders just like you because your a person, not a sales funnel.
If someone is so desperate for sales to chooses to solicit a new contact – who most have never met in real life – when they barely know them, it suggests a lack of sales skills, let alone inter-personal skills.
The most successful people are found to be relational, not transactional.
Remember, there’s always a human being at the heart of every transaction. Build connections and relationships. You may find you never have to ask for the sale, as your reputation and persona around you will naturally attract those who choose to do business with you.
If you put mustard on an ice cream sundae it would probably rate as one of the worst tastes you’ve ever experienced.
But when placed on a deli sandwich or a hamburger, that mustard now becomes an excelling ingredient to the meal.
Employees are like that as well.
How many times have you seen an employee struggle in a particular team, department or company, only to thrive in a new environment?
Was it because the employee was a poor performer before, and learned to excel finally with a new chance?
Most likely, it was because the employee was the right one, but the team in which they were formerly on was not a conducive recipe to bring out the qualities of that individual.
You see this many times with athletes who come under coaches on the same or a different team who teach better, appreciate the player’s skills, and give them the chances to succeed.
Employees in companies know when they’re under-appreciated, under-utilized or working for toxic leadership. When someone leaves a team or company and thrives in their new environment, it’s almost always because the former leadership didn’t place a proper value on what the employee possessed for talent.
People always work better and succeed in an environment that allows the flavor of their skills to shine.