Blog Archives

Unexpectedly Providing Value At Age 19

When you are a teenager, working for the first time, it is truly all about the money. Finally, you have some independence from your parents, and can start to buy things for yourself!  As you make a little more money and get different jobs through high school, earning money gets even more exciting. The thought of providing any value to others as a teenager does not even register for most. I was part of that group. Then there was a real shift for me when I was 19 years old, thanks to my dad.

I was making $5.25 per hour working at a buffet restaurant in the summer of 1992. I was working a lot because I was off from university for a few months, and the “money was rolling in” (or so I thought). My dad was teaching an adult education class in the evenings, and connected with a man who needed some math upgrading. He was involved in an accident, and had to pursue a new career due to his injuries. The kicker was he needed his high school diploma to qualify for most jobs.

My dad could not commit to doing all the tutoring himself, so he asked if I would help at a rate of $30 per hour.

“$30 PER HOUR?” I said.

“You bet”, said my dad back.

“WHEN DO I START?” I hastily replied.

I was excited because I was going to make more money working with him in two hours a day, then I would make in eight hours per day at the restaurant!

As I started to work with the man, it soon became very clear that it would not be as easy as I thought. Just because I understood math very well, did not mean that my knowledge was going to “rub off on him” as quickly. There were some difficult days at the beginning of the process, but by the end, we were working well together. We gained a mutual respect for each other as time passed. I often caught myself thinking that this guy must have thought that I was a “know-it-all young punk”, but realistically that was not the case. He was in a jam, and I was there to help.

This was a life changing experience for a 19-year-old kid, to realize the value that I provided was much more important than the money I was receiving. It did take a while to get to that place, because all I could think about was the $60 that I made each time I saw him!

In retrospect I would have done it for free, because I changed a life. As I look back now, that is what I remember the most. The memory of the money is only for story telling purposes. I helped him get back on his feet when something terrible had happened.  As a 19 years old kid, $30 per hour to me then was like $200 per hour today!

In the end, my “compensation” was that he got to start over again, and I played a small part in that.

You are not going to get paid for everything that you do in your life, that is a fact. When you realize that helping others, providing value and not always expecting something in return is a great way to live your life, it will be a real game changer. It was for me!

  • When have you provided value for someone, and not even realized it at the time?
  • Do you have the mindset of “what is in it for me?” before deciding if you should help somebody?
  • Is it time to start giving unconditionally?

Have A Laugh Fridays – Death By PowerPoint!

Fantastic!!

Thanks to Eric Blumthal for sending this to me.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Social Media Changed My Life!

It was April of 2011, and I had been writing for some time. As I reflect back now, it was well over a year that I was carrying around a notebook and writing about sales, sales management and leadership. But I was feeling lost. It felt like I was stranded on an island, wondering if my message would have meaning to anyone else. I was quickly coming to the realization that Google was “letting me down” when I needed it the most.

What I mean by that was I was having trouble finding out what I really wanted to know about sales and who the key players were. I wanted to connect with influential people in the industry, but just did not know how. Then I saw a commercial from the website www.ancestry.com and it inspired me greatly. Their tagline was,

“You don’t have to know what you are looking for, you just have to start looking.”

I was pumped up! I was going to dig deep online and search for influential people who were doing similar things do what I wanted to be doing.

Shortly after I started my search, I came across a website called:

www.salesandmanagementblog.com

Paul McCord’s fantastic website and blog not only provided great value for me, but he also had a “Blogroll”. For those who do not know, a Blogroll is a listing of favourite blogs that the author follows. It was like I had won the lottery! Many of the influential sales leaders that I follow today are on that list, and I have thanked Paul personally for enabling me to connect with a great group of people. I immediately started to follow their blogs, but it was time-consuming.

Fast forward a few weeks, and I was visiting an account for work. One of the employees was on Twitter and enjoying it a lot. I made fun of her a bit, and stated that I did not need to know every little update of celebrities and regular people. She said that I had it all wrong, and gave me a quick tutorial. I was very impressed and kicked myself that I had not joined sooner!

After work that day, I rushed home and feverishly started searching for people who I had recently discovered in the sales space. Many or them were actually on Twitter! I started to follow them. The first thing that I noticed was the time savings for following blog posts and other valuable content. As an example, if I was following ten blogs and had to go to each of their pages on a regular basis, it would take a long time. But if I was following them on Twitter, they were all updating their profiles with new tweets and I could see what was new in a fraction of the time. That was awesome!

As I progressed and became a daily Twitter user, I realized that the social interaction was becoming very beneficial to me as well. I was having a blast, and contributing daily! I must admit, trying to get my point across in less than 140 characters was a challenge, but I learned to adapt. As the list of people I followed quickly grew, I proceeded to group them in to sub lists, to keep each list of people to follow a manageable size.

LinkedIn was a website that I had previously used for job searches. I soon realized that it was much more than an HR platform. I started to connect with people in the sales space, fellow entrepreneurs, and old friends! I have now connected with close to 900 people, and am looking to add to my network daily.

Starting a Facebook fan page and joining Google+ a few months ago has provided me with other platforms to share my message on. Internet marketing leader Gary Vaynerchuk put his spin on social media during an interview with Tony Robbins once. He was posed the question about where people should be connecting with social media. His answer was a very emphatic “ALL OF THEM”. His explained the point with this analogy….

“If you were invited to several important business mixers, would you attend all of them, or just one?”

If you are attempting to spread your message to as many people as possible, the correct answer is all of them of course!

Social media has changed my life. I now know others are interested in what I have to say (which is an incredible feeling). I post my content in all the social media outlets mentioned above!

If you are looking to connect with people in your areas of interest, social media is certainly an incredible venue to do so. If you are looking to take things a step further and start, sustain and eventually grow a business, it is a must!

Most of you reading this are already connecting on social media, so congratulations! But please consider your connections that are on the fence, and send them the link of this blog post! It changed my life, and will hopefully change theirs too.

One last thing… if we are not connected on social media, I would love if you joined me at:

Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/SellLeadSucceed

(Don’t forget to like to stay connected!) 

Twitter

https://twitter.com/TimMushey73

Google+

http://bit.ly/XvkjRr

YouTube

http://www.youtube.com/user/TimMushey

Are You Just A Perimeter Player?

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In sports like hockey, football and basketball, certain athletes get tagged with the name “perimeter player”. They mainly shoot from the outside, or in the case of football, only catch the ball near the sidelines. They play it safe, and stay away from the “dirty” dangerous areas. They can still score from the outside, but are missing other opportunities to score.

In sales, most well-adjusted reps have the ability to:

  • Sell more products to their most satisfied customers
  • Sell to a prospect who has all but pulled out a purchase order number and said “I’m buying!”
  • Take over and succeed in a territory that is already on “auto-pilot”

That would be described as perimeter play.

What about getting in to the “dirty”, dangerous areas?

These reps have the ability to:

  • Put together action plans and succeed in getting struggling accounts back on track
  • Get in front of dissatisfied customers, and fix problems face-to-face
  • Make difficult decisions to drop underperforming accounts that will never thrive
  • Succeed in spite of lack of leadership and never make excuses

My favourite analogy for this type of work is always related to hockey,

“Who is willing to go in to the corner, get hit by a bigger player, and still come out with the puck?”

The perimeter players, will let up, and watch somebody else complete the difficult tasks.

The perimeter players may still have a long career, but be just average. If you are looking for average, then you must be ok playing it safe. The repeated overachiever, who is always looking to improve never hesitates and welcomes the difficult tasks on route to massive success!

The questions are:

How badly do you want it?

And….

How “dangerous” are you willing to be?

Only you will know the answer. It’s your choice!

presenting like a rock star

Tim Mushey:

Broc does an awesome job discussing why presenting is so critical to your success. I realized this several years ago when I joined Toastmasters. Broc and I are online friends now, and his content “rocks”!

Originally posted on fool (with a plan):

Rock and roll2Does anyone else go to concerts and try to figure out how to do your job better? No? A side effect of being a presenter and facilitator is that I cannot attend any training, speech, or event without noticing what is done well, what could be better, and what I can learn from it.

Eighteen months ago I wrote a post called “Rock and Roll Presentation Skills” after seeing one of my favorite European bands perform. As a presenter, this band inspires me more than any other with their stage presence, energy, and connection to the crowd. By sheer coincidence the same band was performing in Dallas the same weekend I was there to attend HRevolution and I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to see them again.

Reflecting on what I took from this performance, the presentation lessons hold true with what I learned from their last performance.

1. There…

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To Give Or Not To Give…

Playing Cards In Hand

That is the question :-)

Ever see people handing out business cards like they are dealing a deck of cards?

“Come one, come all, everyone gets a card!”

The important question is…

 

did you get a card from the prospect, or the networking event connection?

 

When you get a card, you are in control. You control your own destiny.

When all you do is hand out cards, and often forget to get their card, you wait – hoping one day that they reach out to you.

Uh-oh! Your card may end up in the garbage but you still can connect if you have theirs!

The Baseball Beer Dude That Rocked!

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So, like  – there are lots of us on earth right?

Many of us are trying to stand out from the crowd and do “out of the ordinary stuff”. Heck many of us are trying to do ordinary stuff but still get noticed.

Like delivering beer to people’s seats at a baseball game.

There is no way to stand out from the crowd doing that right?

WRONG!

I had the pleasure of attending a Chicago Cubs exhibition game in April of 2011, and did not realize how much of a treat I was in for from watching a beer vendor work. His coverage of our section immediately caught my attention! He was more charismatic, more outgoing, more energetic, and more fun to watch than any other beer concession worker than I had ever seen before. I caught myself watching him work more than the game itself!

But that was not even the best part. When he left our section for a bit, I followed him and we had a bit of a conversation. I was captivated by his stories of working in the industry for many years. When I left with my drinks, he gave me his “business card”. It was a laminated baseball-like card with his picture on the front working at a game. On the back it had all of his “statistics”. By statistics I mean all the venues he had worked at during his career, and events that he attended.

I still have his “business card”, and look at it from time to time to remind me what it truly means to have a well-developed personal brand.

  • What do you do to stand out from the crowd?
  • Where do you know that you can improve to increase your exposure?

Developing your personal brand is not a “when I feel like it” thing. It should be ongoing. Daily if possible.

Be memorable, be engaging, be caring and for goodness sake have some fun!

The Five Star 5 – Why Public Speaking Sucks!

Many people are terrified to speak in public and/or give presentations. Here are five reasons why public speaking and presenting can suck:

  1. You were not prepared / did not understand your content
  2. You did not practice ahead of time
  3. You did not know your audience well enough
  4. You did not have a back up plan when things like visual aids had technical issues
  5. You have not at least visited your local Toastmasters Club as a guest, to see how they can help develop your speaking skills

Public speaking and presenting can be a rewarding experience if you address these five points, and several others.

  • Are you due for a public speaking “makeover”?
  • What is the greatest challenge that you face getting up in front of a group?

How Bad Do You Want It?

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I spoke at a local Toastmasters Conference over the weekend and had a tremendous time! My discussion focused on the basics of Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and how to use the social website “MeetUp” to attract guests to local club meetings.

When my presentation was over, I continued to chat with several attendees.

A couple of people took particular interest in what I was doing online with social media to build my  brand. I recall comments like,

  • “You obviously don’t have kids. How could you do all this other stuff and work full-time?”
  • “What kind of day job do you have?”
  • “How much time do you spend on social media per day”?

They commented on their busy lives, and how utilizing social media to improve their future seemed nearly impossible.

I was getting nervous and was not sure what to say next. My instincts finally kicked in . I proceeded  to say one phrase in a very confident (but non-confrontational) tone,

“How badly do you want it?”

“Actually I do have kids; a seven-year old and a 13 month old. I work full-time out of the house. We are as busy like most families, seemingly running all the time. But I make it all work. I have blogged for two years, spent at least 15 minutes per day building my brand most days over the past 3 years.

I focus on doing my “social media brand building” before the family gets up in the morning, or late at night. If it is on a weekend, I sneak away from them for short periods of time. The only reason I can commit to the crazy hours is that I LOVE WHAT I AM DOING!”

I continued to discuss the “Little Bit Everyday” mantra that I learned from Jeb Blount over at Sales Gravy.

I love the gym analogy. People think that they have to buy a gym membership and workout at least one hour per day to get in shape.  Small chunks of time on a regular basis makes a difference as well. Some days I spend hours on my online presence, others only a few minutes. But I show up ALL THE TIME. You can’t start engaging with social media, get all excited, then disappear for weeks at a time. If I see profiles like that, I am gone!

When that conversation was done, one of the attendees said to me, “I never thought of it like that“!

I am happy the message resonated with them, once I explained balancing  family life, and moving my consulting opportunities forward.

  • How do you balance everything if you are working full-time with a regular “day job”?
  • How much time do you spend daily on social media, blogging and building your brand?
  • What struggles do you face as you try to move your business forward?

Would love to hear your thoughts on this very important topic. Most people are struggling just to get through the day, and it would be nice to share ideas how successful people are able to manage all of their commitments!

Great Message About The First Follower!

The first follower transforms a lone nut in to a leader!”

Great quote from this short three-minute video.

Hope you enjoy this as much as I do.

Have a fantastic Wednesday.