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ADAM’S BLOG

All posts from September 2018

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293: “Yes” is not the end ​

When you enroll a new client, their “yes” should be the beginning of something wonderful.

But it rarely is:

  • 20% leave after 100 days: Using SaaS as an example here, if 70% of buying decisions are made based on feelings, but 20% of new customers don’t stay enrolled for even 100 days, what are we missing?
  • Care decreases on “Yes”: The attention, energy, enthusiasm, engagement, and support during evaluation disappear all too often when a sale is made. Rather like a spouse that stopped trying after courtship.
  • A sign of things to come: That’s all the evaluation process should be. We should expect more of the same following “Yes”, if not a greater amount of what led you to say “Yes” in the first place.

Ever bought something and wondered where the energy of the seller went afterward? Could you be doing that to those you serve?

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292: Are you a fiduciary or a broker? ​

If you get to make decisions that affect those you serve, you’re one or the other:

  • A fiduciary makes things happen between buyers and sellers where he is rewarded for ensuring the best decision is made. Measures people helped (conversations).
  • A broker makes things happen between buyers and sellers where he is rewarded by swaying the decision in the favor of a commission. Measures number of closes (dollars taken).

The fiduciary wants the best for you. The broker wants the best for himself. Which of these people would you prefer to do business with?

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291: The red velvet rope ​

Sometimes, we have to do something very uncomfortable… we have to pull the red velvet rope:

  • Work that doesn’t create growth exists in most teams, be they teams of one or many. It may be a wasteful project or a disrespectful client. In either case, it’s important to recognize that’s not the future you want to build.
  • There’s a trap door underneath these projects and clients. We ignore it most of the time because caring teams don’t like to think about it. Still, it’s important to recognize that it’s there.
  • Pulling the red velvet rope when you’ve been led astray is incredibly uncomfortable for caring teams, be it emotionally or financially. Still, it’s important to do if you care about the future you want to build.

Do you, and those you work with, have permission to pull the red velvet rope?

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290: Judging a book by its cover ​

Please, judge books by their covers. It’s normal, don’t feel bad about it:

  • The best page-turner with a bad cover isn’t the best page-turner at all. If it didn’t put in the work to make you open it up, it chose not to compete.
  • The worst material with a great cover is a frequent letdown of trigger-happy buyers. Yet it earned a chance at your attention, it reached the semi-finals.
  • Carefully crafted content with a great cover is so rare, we share it with everyone we know. It earned a chance at your attention, and it won.

Whether you’re working on a book or you belong to a team trying to earn your audience’s attention, it’s worth considering asking yourself what type of book you are.

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289: You don’t get to-do that anymore ​

The ratchet effect in a growing team suggests that, sometimes, you don’t get to-do that anymore:
  • The toil you know is more comfortable than the toil you don’t. We enjoy what we’re good at, so letting it go is asking for discomfort.
  • Leading others toward your toil takes time you could have spent doing it yourself. Yet leading others forward is what helps your company grow.
  • What comes next is even harder. Now what? It’s time to draw a new map, rather than following your old one. That one’s not yours anymore.

The ratchet effect creates leverage but can be uncomfortable to crank. Is your work important enough to you to make you trade your to-dos for discomfort?

 

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288: How your people identify themselves ​

Questions control our focus. When posed to us, they have the power to change the way we look at ourselves, even if for just a while:

  • Are you a caring person? The focus is on your nature, making us more likely to volunteer for a good cause.
  • Are you an adventurous person? The focus is on your spirit, making us more likely to try something new.
  • Is quality important to you? The focus is on your taste, making us more likely to invest in a quality, long-lasting solution.
  • Are you a people person? The focus is on your social orientation, making us more likely to attend an event.

When we ask questions of ourselves or others, our answers carry into the rest of the conversation. Whether we’re recruiting volunteers or raising their ambition, the lives of those we wish to serve are as good as the questions they–and we–ask them.