Yesterday, I got hired to deliver a keynote speech in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The close was incredibly smooth. Karen, my primary contact at the organization, seemed to recognize my name. She was almost instantly confident in my ability to engage an audience with entertaining and educational content. Best of all, Karen seemed to understand why I […]
“Regrets, I’ve had a few…” Remember that old song My Way, made famous by Frank Sinatra? As a lifelong, commissioned salesperson, I can really identify with a song that references the pain of over-ambition, doubt, tears, taking “the blows,” and “my share of losing.” I’ve lost deals that would pay for a house. Not […]
If there’s one thing I’ve learned from helping business leaders and salespeople be more effective, it’s that there is no substitute for being persuasive. Some think that persuasion is a learned behavior. Millions of dollars are spent each year in an effort to teach salespeople how to be more influential. Others think persuasion is more […]
As the signature story goes, a Zappos.com call center employee received a call from a customer at 3 am one morning. The Zappos customer may have been slightly inebriated. He was frustrated that he couldn’t find an open pizza store. Instead of gently turning the customer away, the employee found an open pizzeria and arranged a […]
When it comes to presentation tips, people want help fast. Most speaking coaches know how to get to the heart of the matter right away. But not all are good at conveying their ideas. Even fewer are good teachers. Watch how I get right to the point and almost instantly help an audience member become […]
“For God’s sake, don’t say ‘yes’ until I’ve finished talking.” -Daryl Zanuck, Film Producer Selling is not about you talking, it’s about the prospect talking–even during your presentations. Important things happen when the prospect speaks. You’ll learn more about the prospect’s problem when she is talking. You can learn why the prospect is […]
Americans live in interesting times. The most evolved society in history has overall, made an extra effort to be more patient, more tolerant, and to withhold judgment. Wait, what? Withhold judgment? We’re taught in schools and church not to judge others. Almost every day I hear someone use the phrase, “I’m not judging here” or […]
There’s nothing funny about humor. Tweet this
At least that’s what professional comedians think about the subject. It turns out that the route to a person’s funny bone is quite strategic and even cerebral.
And the trip to the funny bone is often goes through some dangerous territory. All humor makes fun of something or someone, so the art of comedy should be be handled very carefully.
That’s why so few professional speakers are funny. Humor is not easy.
Recently, Detroit’s Metro Times, interviewed several comedians on the art of being funny. Here are their suggestions, along with a few of my own.
Comedy tips from the pros
Most of you are probably familiar with the classic public speaking adage to “Know your audience.” This is great advice for salespeople, too. The idea, of course, is that when a speaker or salesperson is familiar with the person(s) on the other side of the table, the person speaking can address that person’s needs. That […]
Effective marketing is not easy. The art of psychological attraction is a sophisticated mix of language, imagery, and delivery. To complicate matters, we all don’t agree about what constitutes good marketing. Some people prefer subtle messaging, some love the audacious approach. Notice that the accompanying photo doesn’t have a caption or a call-to-action of any […]
Every business has a customer service problem.
I’ve yet to work with a client who didn’t need help improving their service model.
In many cases, the people providing the customer service are the last to become aware of the problem because they are used to the way things are. A good consultant can spot such problems almost immediately.
It’s cheaper to keep customers than to find new ones
The cardinal sin of selling is not knowing when to walk away. Learn how to avoid unhappy deals so you can sell more efficiently and perfect your trade-craft.