Stop Cynicism at the Doorway by Taking Care of Yourself First

A change is in the air. Autumn is coming. You go into the stores and see Fall and Halloween decor already gracing the cluttered shelves, and people starting to huddle around those isles.

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Businesses are engulfed in the third quarter, stores are hiring temporary workers to fill in the soon to be Holiday bustles, and I am sitting here contemplating the rest of the year.

I bought a day planner, and believe it or not, have days and months til the end of the year filled with appointments, seminars, blogging schedules, writing novel schedules, publication dates, family time, events….wait..

STOP. It hit me today. Here we go again, the Holidays approaching and this is all madness. Already?!

My children just finished Summer vacation and starting school this week, and yet already our culture is advertising things to buy for this Fall. And we all know Christmas will be tossed in the mix soon after. A feeling of dread hit me.

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When I scrolled to the month of October, I realized I had already filled in a wish list for Christmas gifts. Here we go again, I thought to myself. And then I stopped.

I realized as I was scrolling through this day planner so many things were planned, I failed to plan anything for myself to detox from work. I realized many nights I come home mentally exhausted to the point of going cross-eyed, and then I jump right in to help my husband with the kids, dinner and household chores.

I failed at taking time for me. I was putting everything else first besides what mattered most. My husband was doing it too, after all he is an Entrepreneur himself.

I read an article from an Entrepreneur last week, he said he is taking a month sabbatical, some time off to unwind and clear his head. I thought, wow what a great idea. Realistically and financially, most people cannot do that, but we can stop what we are doing and take a break to clear our heads.

So I did just that.

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I stopped what I was doing. I left a cup of coffee on the table alongside my daily planner and I drove to the beach. I took a long walk, breathing, meandering through the water as they touched the shoreline. Just being me. I cleared my head.

 

 

When I left the beach I felt more energized and ready to tackle my day, than I had working all week at work with no breaks and customers constantly in my face.

As working professionals, especially Entrepreneurs, it is vital to our survival we stop what we are doing at times and breathe. We get so caught up in the schedule, killing ourselves with the tip of our pens at every single thing we jot down on a calendar.

Our jobs are important. The customers are important. However, constant in-your-face humans can breed cynicism and create a bad perception for any company if the employee isn’t getting a moment to breathe! I realized I was at my breaking point.

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Our health is more important. Our emotional stability is vital to our making it or breaking it in this career centered world. Let’s face it, if you don’t take time for yourself then what are you living for? Every person needs a moment of silence or a break from time to time.

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Before the Holiday hectics hit, make sure you are jotting down moments of time in that day planner for you. After all, Rome didn’t get built in one day. Wall Street isn’t going anywhere any time soon. You add more value to your team by having rested, coming to work refreshed.

Most importantly, you add value to yourself and your family. If you aren’t any good to you, how can you be worth anything to your job or anything else in life? Take care of yourself first.

The Hardest Thing you Will Ever Do

The hardest thing you will ever do is…

Allow other people to tell you how to live your life without knowing anything about your dreams or purpose. Allowing those people to tell you where to live. Go to college. How to dress.

By allowing others to dictate and control your life, you lose.

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And the hardest pain you will ever experience is allowing those people to win by continuing to dictate your life.

Life is too short. Every person has their own purpose. Don’t let anyone take yours away. Be yourself.

 

When the CEO says: Yes, but the Gatekeeper says: NO

There’s a communication problem in B2B, and it’s not YOU. You are cold calling for business to business development. The only way you are going to get to a decision maker to let you in to pitch your product or service is:

A. Call the Owner of the company yourself and hope he is the end of all decisions. Or…

B. Call the gatekeeper.

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But what happens when you actually reach the owner or CEO of the company you are trying to penetrate and he/she says: “Yea! Send me your information”, only to find the one whom you have to send the information to says: “NO!”

I have seen the owners of company’s say: “Send me your info, I may be interested.” And then when you email the one sheeter or a proposal info, the gatekeeper email’s back a negative response like this one: “This business does not set appointments. Thank you for your time.”

In other words what they are really saying is: Go shove off. I don’t want your information. I am not open to anything new. Stop wasting my time.

This is an issue in the cold calling initiative to try to get in through the gatekeeper. In reality, the owner of the company may see real value in what you have to offer, but the gatekeeper (or marketing manager) may roll his eyes and huff. And it’s hard to get past him when after all in his eyes, the business doesn’t need you.

But you know businesses always need more ways to drum up business. How else do their profits grow?

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This is the problem: The gatekeeper has seen this before. He knows your tactics. In reality, he doesn’t want your services, regardless of what the owner or CEO says he may be interested in. Unless you get the gatekeeper’s approval, you are dead in the water of the B2B development.

So what do you do? You could pop off a smart elect reply to that negative email or say: “Hey, you do know the owner said to send you my info, right?” Wrong.

The professional response would maybe be to reply to the email that you had kindly spoken with the owner/CEO and he stated to send your info over. By the way, this hardly works because the gatekeeper has seen this marketing tactic before too. There are too many sleazy cold callers that say things like that but the owner never talked to them. So the gatekeepers are cautious for a reason, and since time is money, you better have a good reason.

In situations like this, the best way to deal with it is to move on. In reality, when situations like this happen it should make you see the lack of communication within that business between the Owner/CEO and gatekeeper. You have to realize business owners are pressed for time. They don’t have time to dilly dally. They may tell you to send your info over to let the gatekeeper deal with it, only to be slammed in your face because at the end of the day, the gatekeeper doesn’t give a crap about what you can do.

If you are lucky, you will get a gatekeeper that sees real value in what you can offer to their business. It’s not the end of the world, other than it may be the end of that company’s opportunities with the lack of communication that is apparent. And if a company is that hard pressed to penetrate, you may see in a year or two they are closing shop. Why? Because the gatekeeper did not see value in what you presented to the company, and has no clue about business development or how to grow it.

But you know business development takes time. I have seen companies on the brink of closing and firing everyone, but with the perseverance of a professional cold calling initiative they start prospering. Why? Because that cold caller was given a chance by the gatekeeper to build relationships and market that business to potential clients/customers and drum up contracts and sales within time.

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Just remember: cold calling is a masterful art in initiation. You are taking the initiative to reach out, hoping the gatekeeper sees your value. If they don’t, take that company off your list. Why do you want to sell your services to people who fail to have adequate communication within the ranks? If they take you on anyway, you may be at the end of those communication fails one way or another, which will make your job harder.

There are a ton more businesses out there that need help. That’s what you do. You help companies build business. You help them keep people employed. You help them build relationships, and along the way, you solidify yourself in the ranks of B2B development.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Courage is…

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Silent morning, prayerful hopes, and Coffee…Start your day off right, and the rest will follow. Just don’t give up. 

“COURAGE is facing your hearts greatest nightmare and doing the right thing anyway.”-Tim Keller

The Difference between You & I, and this Big Hot Mess of a World is…

The world is a big hot mess. But it always has been. There has always been fighting. Ignorance. Hopelessness. There has always been problems, famine and death.

But there has also been Hope. There has also been courageous people who stood up against the odds and made differences in people’s lives and futures. There always will be. None of this will change.

The difference between the both, is you….

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Doing the right thing has power-Laura Linney

and I, and doing the right thing.

Every day we have choices to do what is right or wrong. To be hopeful and pursue our passions, or die inside of hopelessness with no end in sight to our hardships. Every-single-thing we pursue in our lives leaves an impact.

We can choose to let our hardships kill us inside, or help us grow. Hard times are not a testament to our character, because hard times have always been around. They can help us become stronger if we keep moving forward, no matter how painful. We can choose to be better people and do what is right, or be bitter and miserable, and make those around us miserable too. Image courtesy of Serge Bertasius Photography at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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The difference between growing (being better) and dying (being bitter), is you and I.

You look at yourself. I look at myself. Each person takes honest inventory of our pursuits, our passions, our failures, and our mistakes. What drives you? What hopes and aspirations do you seek? Are they good? Are they bad? What are your intentions in this crazy world? Image courtesy of tiverylucky at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

“Courage is facing your hearts greatest nightmare and doing the right thing anyway.”-Tim Keller

The world is a big hot mess, it always has been, nothing has changed.

The big difference in this world are people who make it better by grasping hope, doing what is right, and encouraging others when they feel hopelessness is the only alternative.

 

 

Cold Calling initiatives still work in a Business 2 Business 21st Century

The cold call: An attempt to make an unsolicited call on someone by telephone or in person, in an attempt to sell goods or services. This is cold calling; where you need nerves of steel and courage grafted into your backbone.

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Cold calling is a great initiative to bring something to the plate of business owners an build lasting relationships

“Strength and growth come only through continuous effort and struggle.”-Napoleon Hill

In other words, the more you make cold calls, the more you master opportunity even with a disaster on the other end of the line. A disaster call would be the owner of a company blasting you for: “How dare you call me! This is against the law!” To a simple “click”, yea, they hung up on me before I could say why I was calling. Image courtesy of stockimages at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Cold calling is harder in the B2B realm that it is in Business to Consumer. When you are calling a potential or current “customer”, your tone at the beginning of the call sets a precedence with that person on the other line to listen to what you have to say.

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WIIFM? Business owners don’t want annoying sales calls, they want to know what’s in it for them. 

However, when you are calling Business to Business, your tone matters just as much as these 5 words do: WIIFM. If you have never seen this before, it means: What’s in it for me?

Before you call a business to try to sell them something, you better have done your research to make sure they would even be a good candidate for what service you are selling. And if they are not looking, can you steer the conversation to keep them on the line long enough to get a time to follow up? Image courtesy of Goldy at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Always ask the potential candidate if this is a good time. “Hello, is this John? Hi John, this is Mike with (insert your business name here), is now a good time?” You ask them for their time, being courteous. ID-100287259

If they respond: “No, I have a meeting.” Then you respond: “Can I follow up with you, what would be a good time? Can I send you my information by email?” You ask them for their permission to follow up, never assume. And then guess what? You follow up. You never let a lead go cold unless they flat out tell you they are not interested and for you to stop contacting them.  Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Business owners are inundated minute to minute with time consuming spammy emails, sales calls and solicitors. What makes your call stand out of the pack? What makes you think the tone in your voice will keep them hanging on?

The tone sets the call, always. That is not here say, that is fact.

When I worked in Mortgage Collections, I was faced with financially exhausted customers past the brink of their breaking points emotionally and mentally. I learned the tone in my voice and sharing empathy with them went a long way. If you project your tone as professional while compassionate, people generally listen.

In the B2B world, when you need Business owners to survive, your tone and mannerisms on the phone speak volumes. Following up with a potential client can make or break a business opportunity, even if it takes following up for a year or longer. You never give up. Image courtesy of stockimages at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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Follow up with those leads, you may be surprised where they take you in B2B relationship building. 

Cold Calling in Business development is another word for: Perseverance. And we all know perseverance is persistence in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success. That just means you don’t get scared, or give up, no matter what happens or what is said at the other end of that line.

 

 

Your Perception of Life Determines whether Hardships are Catastrophic or just Another Bump in the Road

I remember the first catastrophic event in my life. It was hard. I thought for sure I would never get through it. I just knew with all I was that nothing would ever be the same again and my life might as well just be over.

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Your hard times do not define you, but your courage and perseverance will

But it wasn’t over. That wasn’t the end.

That so-called catastrophic event led me to the next hardship, then the next, and so on and so on.

You get the picture right?

Every single time we are going through hell in life it seems there’s nothing that could be any worse. But then things change. Time happens. And we look back and realize life is just really hard at times, and good at times, and sometimes it really sucks.

But no matter what, life is life.

We are prone to believe nothing else matters than what is revolving around our little world of hardships. When in reality, we are just tiny specks of a massive endless roll called life. Image courtesy of Serge Bertasius Photography at FreeDigitalPhotos.net  

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Life is hard at times, it’s good at times, and it sucks at times. But it is still life, and whatever we go through is just another bump in the road. Keep moving forward.

We will go through crap til the day we die, but we should not let what we are enduring stop us from having hope, and being encouraged. Because life will go on, and things will happen whether they are good or bad. It is up to us to keep moving forward with courage, because around the next bend…

…there may be another catastrophic life event, but life is still there waiting. So never, never give up.

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