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31 August 2014

7 Actions for ANYONE to be better in business TODAY

There are a LOT of articles swirling around us on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook about the traits of successful people—what they eat for breakfast, how much they exercise, what kind of vacations they take . . . but what do successful people DO to become more successful?

This list is a good start for Anyone to be Better in Business, and more Successful in business and life, in general—and they don’t come with student loans, an 8 week course or study guide {But this list DOES include many links to related blogs to help you execute your actions—look for highlighted text}. Chances are, you’ve got a handle on several of these but take a look and see where you can make some improvements:

  1. Zip it. When in doubt—Stop TALKING. In any meeting or setting: Shut up about you and your product, your vacation, your tee ball championship or your Schnauzer. Ask questions. Listen. Ask more questions. Take Notes. Customers, coworkers, bosses, clients . . . give you all the answers to solving their problems in what they tell YOU—NOT by what you tell them about you, your product, your features, your values, your sister, your cat, your neighbor, et cetera. Information is power. The more you have, the more you can apply your capabilities to what they value, the more leverage shifts in your favor.
  2. Take NOTHING personally.  This is a tough one for a lot of people. It’s not about you. Really. No one does or says anything that is not truly and deeply rooted in relation to their own well being. It’s not selfish—even the most unselfish acts are related to making our own selves feel good. It’s simply human nature. If you can be conscious of this and remove your personal feelings from a situation and understand the other persons motivation, realizing they are talking, acting, driving from a place that has nothing to do with you . . . Well, that makes anything more tolerable—especially in business.
  3. Be Interesting. Be engaging. Smarts and wit go hand in hand. Know what’s funny and when to interject clever. Don’t be self deprecating. The trifecta of successful business people is: Clever, Confident and Collected (ie— prepared and knowledgeable).
  4. Gain Self Awareness. Understand how the world perceives you and what impact your presence has on people. What does your body language give away? Do you have a smile in your voice on the phone? Do you show your hand at how nervous you are? Are you truly listening and participating in conversation or just waiting for openings to interject (or even interrupt) to talk about you, you, you?
  5. Know your audience. Who are you talking to/with? What are their goals? Current initiatives? What’s going on in their lives/organization/company? What problems are they facing? What opportunities lie before them? If this is a prospective client, learn all you can before going into meet with them. Be well prepared. Research current press releases, stock prices, earnings reports, new hires, profiles, community involvement, charitable contributions . . . This information can help you tie your value proposition into their organizational goals . . . closing the gap in the sales cycle or partnerships and positioning you as a trusted partner.
  6. Be Genuine. Be you. Nothing smells worse then a faker. If you don’t believe in yourself, your product, your goals, your efforts, you can’t hide it, no matter how great your poker face is . . . You’re screwed and will never earn trust.
  7. Be accountable and dependable. Show up on time—early. Follow up and follow through. Do what you say you’re going to do NO Matter What! Better yet, Over Deliver and WOW your customers/clients/bosses with an experience that only YOU can deliver.

Are there more actions you’d add to this list to be Better in Business?

Let us know—shout out in the comments below.

Until next time, keep kickin’ butt!

-sks

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