Right FIT Newsletter #143 – Visualizing, Soft skills, What’s for dinner?

Sales and marketing Newsletter

Quick notes to help you get more sales and marketing done in less time. . . next week.

In this issue:

– Techniques for FIT
– Being Human
– Random Stuff

Techniques for FIT

  • When you work on your strategic vision and picture your idealized future, consider discretionary time. I’m guessing “overworked” isn’t a desirable future state.
  • It’s estimated that by the end of my life I will have spent over two years of my life on social media. I hope it’s entertaining.
  • The study showing a walk in the trees might just reset our brains, moods, and combat depression has yet to be debunked. So keep walking.
  • Is there anyone on their deathbed who thinks, “I should have worried more?” (reminds me of this cartoon from Amy Hwang in the New Yorker)


Being Human – You’ve got skills

An excerpt from “The Human Being’s Guide to Business Growth.”


Individual Strengths and Soft Skills

We’ve talked about the I in FIT in a broad sense, and right now I want to go into more detail on how you can harness the power that comes from your people putting their unique, human touch on the work your company does. It goes without saying that your people are already using their strengths in their daily lives. Using them to cope, defaulting to them when under duress, feeling disconnected when asked to do things in ways that oppose them. So, why do we need to dedicate so much time to this topic? There is an interesting thing that happens when you ask someone to take on a new task, like asking a non-seller to sell something. Your people will try to act like someone they are not, they will subvert their natural strengths and try to mimic a standard that isn’t theirs. Take a peek at Figure 7.1.

Figure 7.1 New tasks and competence

Inside each new activity, there are elements of old activities present. We think of learning as being along a continuum from unconscious incompetence to unconscious competence, like riding a bike. At first it looks easy, then we try it and it’s overwhelming, but once we pick up the skill we stop thinking and just do it. However, the experts tell us learning is more complicated than that. Before we ride a bike we must be able to stay in balance and have the strength to work the machine, two things we are unconsciously competent in. Then we learn new things like how to steer, brake, and pedal. Adding other concepts we didn’t even know we should know, like to beware of slippery gravel on pavement. In that same way, your people have innate talents and strengths that apply to any new task, your job and your management’s job is to help them understand what they already know because they’ll learn what they don’t know over time. It’s a process.

Mr. Carl used to see me reading sales and marketing books and say something about “not having to teach a dog physics in order for him to catch a Frisbee.” The thing is that you’re not asking the dog to learn how to catch a Frisbee. The same way a dog will never have to know about lift and wind speed to catch that disc helps you know why knowing your people’s perceived strengths is integral in building momentum for new tasks you want them to take on. Know what your people think they’re good at and use that knowledge to get them working toward your goal. Make it part of company culture. When the leadership thinks in terms of applying strengths to tasks, the results are nothing short of amazing. Start with aligning strengths to the company’s vision and watch your people rise to the occasion.



Random Stuff

What’s cooking?

I mentioned to you a few weeks back that we’re empty nesting. The youngest is off to college and we’re getting used to our new freedoms. One area of concern was food consumption. When our second one went to school, we suffered through the “leftover years” as we learned to halve or quarter recipes so as not to be stuck with one meal for weeks at a time. This time we subscribed to one of those food services, Sun Basket.

Sun Basket checked all sorts of boxes on the list that I didn’t know existed. Recyclable packaging. Allergy sensitive. Serving sizes with no waste. Recipes easy enough for Greg to make. Not eating out too much. And more.

Here’s the report from week 4. (we have 3 meals a week sent to us each Wednesday)

  • Assuming the portion they say is a single serving is accurate, the source of my waistline is no longer a mystery.
  • My knife skills from a week long stint as an Applebee’s prep cook are still there.
  • We have 6 meals in the fridge with no clear path to prevent 9 from being there next Wednesday.

Overall, it’s a great idea. The meals take 30 minutes to make. They taste amazing. It limit trips to the grocery store. There’s a lot of variety in my diet. I’m always hungry. And I’m always hungry.

Good stuff.


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