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As Seen in The Huffington Post - “Please” and “Thank You” Are Getting in the Way of Your Leadership

As Seen in The Huffington Post - “Please” and “Thank You” Are Getting in the Way of Your Leadership

Consider some of the lines that you use in your day to day business conversations. Phrases such as “Please let me know when we can speak more about this…”, “Thank you for taking the time to speak with me today!”, “I look forward to working with you.” Sound familiar? Most recently, these were my “go to” phrases when interacting with colleagues, prospects and clients, especially through email.

As humans and specifically those with the XX chromosome, we have been conditioned to always mind our “p’s and q’s” and please and thank you are a natural part of who we are. And let’s be honest, when we’re trying to negotiate, sell a new idea, or navigate conflict in some way, we think that having manners and using exclamation points or smiley faces to show our excitement make us seem less pushy, and more likeable. The exclamation points are not the issue, rather, they do a great job of visualizing a distinct difference in male and female written communication.

 

 

Read the complete article on the Huffington Post website 

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As Seen in Digital Dealer - Fallacy

As Seen in Digital Dealer - Fallacy

Dr. Merlot and I met up during a layover in Charlotte in route to a family business operating three semi metro dealerships in the Midwest. In our previous visit, we had been dealing with a daughter with a drug issue. Now we were focusing on preparing the dealer’s son and other daughter to be approved as successor dealers. We arrived at a small airport, and began the short drive to Marge and Bill’s dealerships that they received from Marge’s dad.

“Good morning Marge,” the Dealer; “good morning Bill,” her husband of 37 years and the Service Director. “Trust you have recovered from the stress of our last trip? How’s business? How’s Cindy doing in rehab?”

“We are doing about as well as expected,” responded Marge with measured enthusiasm. “Business remains decent and the family is doing ok as well.”

“Cindy dropped out of rehab,” blurted Bill. “She convinced me she can do it on her own.”

I was shocked at this news. “Is she still in Indy living with her ex-boyfriend?”

 

Read the complete article on the Digital Dealer website 

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As Seen in Multi-Unit Franchisee Report - Remain A Positive Influence In Your Community

As Seen in Multi-Unit Franchisee Report - Remain A Positive Influence In Your Community

Hurricanes, wildfires, shootings, earthquakes, scandals, and an unsettled political environment have people feeling a range of emotions leading into our holiday season. Feelings from guilt because we are a witness, bystander, or survivor to being anxious and downright scared depending on how much of the news you believe. For some, it is hard to look forward to this season of thanksgiving without some sense of anxiety or grief. However, to overcoming these heavy emotions, it is in these moments we should work to shift our focus to giving thanks and celebrating unity more than ever.

Many of the tragic events overshadow some of the wonderful things that are taking place in our country. Where there has been tragedy, we are also seeing unity, acts of kindness, and selflessness for the benefit of others. Individuals and communities are coming together to rebuild and help others in need.

Another area for "thankfulness" is in that of our business and economic climate. Just this month, the Bureau of Economic Analysis, a division of the U.S. Department of Commerce, reported that the United States gross domestic product (GDP) increased at an annual rate of 3% in the third quarter, just shy of the 3.1% from the quarter before. In addition, we are seeing record-breaking numbers in the stock market and exponential growth in the franchise industry. In fact, if you did not see the recent "Good News" article in Franchise Update Sales Report, it is worth the read if you are looking for reasons to smile in light of all that is going on in the world.

 

Read the complete article on the Multi-Unit Franchisee Website website

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As Seen in Multi-Unit Franchisee Report - Managing a Franchise Business With A Spouse

As Seen in Multi-Unit Franchisee Report - Managing a Franchise Business With A Spouse

Where the holidays may be a hot spot for family issues, spouses working together in business create opportunities for conflict throughout the entire year.

Marriage vows speak to commitment during "richer or poorer and sickness and in health." Managing personal finances, sacrificing and nurturing individual needs for the sake of the union, and disagreements about replacing the toilet paper makes building a rewarding marriage - work. Throw in the demands of a competitive high-risk working environment, if not managed right, it can put a strain on marriage like nothing else. The bonds of love, commitment, and understanding are challenged by business demands of leadership, market changes, differing styles of management, employee, vendor and customer expectations, performance, and profit. Just as in marriage, because of the work involved to create a successful multi-unit franchisee business, many find partnerships too difficult, which can be observed in the rates of sales and buyout because it's not worth the brain damage.

Because of the complex challenges of both marriage and business partnerships, dynamics between a typical married couple working to maintain harmony and drive business performance can easily create excitement, distractions, and often organizational dysfunction. In the initial stages of building the business, leadership issues are simple. Both parties understand if there are serious marital differences of opinion, the business could fail, and everyone loses. However, after the business grows and supports the desired lifestyle, the independent ambitions of marital personalities can begin to create business chaos.

 

Read the complete article on the Multi-Unit Franchisee Website website

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As Seen in Park Press: Replacing "What You Do" with "Why You Do It"

As Seen in Park Press: Replacing "What You Do" with "Why You Do It"

I recently had a late lunch with my good friend, George. Ten minutes late, I entered the restaurant feeling rushed, but also feeling energized after the phone conversation I had just ended.

Apologizing for my delay, I explained to George the call was with a business owner interested in engaging our firm to help transition the business to the fourth generation of ownership. Being the gracious guy that he is, George replied inquisitively asking how the conversation went. “Well, you know, George, this was the second conversation with her about who we are as a firm, what we do, and how we do it.”

I continued to share more with George. As I was doing this, I could feel myself swelling with pride. “We are a quirky group of individuals with a diversity of backgrounds and professional experience. But what makes us unique is that we all have an absolute passion for what we do. We do everything we can to facilitate the continuity of a business THROUGH the next generation of ownership and management,” I said wide eyed and smiling. “That sounds awesome,” George remarked and then continued with, “The passion I hear in your voice and see in you as you’re talking is powerful in a way that if I were someone in need of your firm’s services, makes me want to do business with you.” He then shared, “It would be important to me to know who you are, why you do what you do and how you work.” Nodding in agreement, “but?” I replied with a short laugh. Taking a deep breath, George said, “well, I would challenge your thoughts on ‘what you do’.” “Really?”, I blurted, “How so, George? I feel like I’m pretty thorough.” George responded, “No, no, I completely agree with you there! However, talking to me about what you do is exactly what you said, it’s a DESCRIPTION. In my opinion, you are conveying your passion when you talk about the WHY.”

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