What do you see when you see people?

Every time you encounter a stranger, you unconsciously project (via your attitude, verbiage, body language, etc.) your answer to the following question:

What do you see when you see people?

o A sale?
o A mark?
o A color?
o A threat?
o A gender?
o A brother?
o A statistic?
o A neighbor?
o A human being?
o A fifty-dollar bill?
o A potential friend?
o A potential customer?
o A library of information?
o A role, position or job title?
o A means to achieve your ends?
o A vision of what that person could become?

Or, when YOU see people, do you see…

1. An opportunity to serve?
2. An opportunity to teach?
3. An opportunity to practice compassion?
4. An opportunity to make someone’s day?
5. An opportunity to provide unforgettable service?
6. An opportunity to turn conversations into laboratories?
7. An opportunity to practice your listening and questioning skills?
8. An opportunity to reassure people that the world is (actually) friendly?

Whatever your answer is, “what you see when you see people” will underscore everything you do, say and think during your encounters.

Whether you know it or not.

In his book, The Art of Happiness, The Dali Lama addressed this very subject.

When HE sees people, he sees an opportunity to practice compassion and kindness. Because, according to him, his religion IS compassion and kindness!

“I use compassion to soften and enrich the ground of everyday encounters,” The Dali Lama wrote, “for this makes the soil fertile and receptive to positive interactions with others.”

Soften and enrich the ground.

Make the soil fertile and receptive.

Awesome.

Great example of approachability in action.

In fact, I bet if you saw the Dali Lama walking down the street (which probably would never happen, but, still) I think his internal attitude would project SUCH an external aura of compassion and kindness; that you wouldn’t be able to help it.

You’d just HAVE to walk up to him.

Awesome.

As my girlfriend likes to say, “The Dalai Lama is my ohm-boy!”

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
What do you see when you see people?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
For a list called, “194 Books to Help You Make a Name for Yourself,” send an email to me, and I’ll send you the list for free?

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

If they can’t come UP to you; how will they ever get BEHIND you?

Buy Scott’s new book and learn daily practices for becoming a more approachable manager!

Pick up your copy (or a case!) right here.

I just can’t help but to…

It’s not about “marketing.”
It’s not about “branding.”
It’s not about “PR.”

It’s about IDENTITY.

Much better word.

It comes from the Latin identere, which means “over and over.”

So, when you’re trying to pinpoint your unique value – as an entrepreneur, as creative professional, as a PERSON – you need to discover your defaults.

The stuff you just DO.
The stuff you can’t NOT do.
The stuff you can’t HELP but to do.

Over and over.

That’s identity.

It’s what famed psychologist Erik Erickson described identity as, “The uniqueness and individuality that makes a person distinct from others.”

Here’s a set of questions to help you unlock yours:

1. When you work, what is the one thing you can’t NOT do?
2. When you meet someone, what is the one thing you CAN’T HELP but do?
3. When you create your art, what is the one thing you JUST do?
4. When you listen to someone, what is the one thing you CAN’T HELP but do?
5. When you start your typical day what is the one thing you JUST do?
6. When you go about your day, what is it that you CAN’T HELP but to BE?

IN SHORT: What is it … that’s just, SO you?

That’s identity. That’s who you are.

And it is a GIFT. Possibly the greatest gift in the world.

So, your duty is to uncover it, re-gift it, and use it to serve others.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
What is it that you can’t help but to do?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
For the list called, “16 Questions to Uncover Your Natural-Born Expertise,” send an email to me and I’ll send you the list for free!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

What’s YOUR approach?

Join The Nametag Forums! Share stories, best practices and connect with a like-minded community of business professionals who stick themselves out there!

How to Make Your Email More Approachable, Part 1

1. Mix the medium. If the subject matter of your email is urgent, instead of emailing the person back, just pick up the phone and call. This is unexpected and usually appreciated.

ASK YOURSELF THIS: Would this message be better communicated over the phone?

2. Use enticing subject lines. If you want people to open your emails FIRST, consider titling your messages with phrases like, “I saw something that made me think of you…” and “Someone paid you a compliment yesterday.” You could also use thought-provoking questions like, “Have you seen this article?” or “How many customers have you WOW’ed this week?

ASK YOURSELF THIS: 500 emails a day – why would someone open YOURS?

3. Email signature. You don’t need an entire novel at the bottom of every message. However, including (some) information and maybe a teaser to encourage a visit to your website is a great way to add a sense of accessibility AND personality to your emails. Just have SOMETHING. An email without a signature is a like phone call without a message or a letter without a return address.

ASK YOURSELF THIS: Does your recipient even KNOW who sent the email?

4. But, remember the Cavemen. Prehistoric hunters learned to respond to ANY movement out in the prairie because it represented a threat – either from a giant, hungry animal or from other hunters. Eons later, the human brain has now evolved to filter out unchanging backgrounds.

See, familiar structures lead to mental laziness; which means there’s no need to pay attention. So, this relates to email in an interesting way: How often are you changing YOUR signature? Because after a while, people are just going to start ignoring it. Remember, the most effective way to attract people’s attention is to BR – EAK their patterns.

ASK YOURSELF THIS: How often do you change your signature?

5. Use mass emails sparingly. With the exception of major events like babies, job changes or health issues; or information updates like new phone numbers, locations or urgent memos, AVOID MASS ANYTHINGS (thanks, Harry Beckwith.) They annoy people. They get ignored. They get deleted.

ASK YOURSELF THIS: When was the last time you opened (or read with interest) a letter that was CLEARLY a mass email?

6. Keep it real. Email will never beat face-to-face interaction. Still, you DO enhance the level of friendliness when you write in a conversational tone. Use simple words. Write short sentences. And don’t be afraid to punctuate! Remember, if you write like you talk, people will listen. A good test is to read your emails aloud before sending. If it sounds like a training manual for a power plant, rewrite it.

ASK YOURSELF THIS: Is your writing friendly enough?

7. Keep it H-U-M-A-N. Don’t try to impress someone by thesaurusizing your email with terms you wouldn’t use in person. It sounds diaphanous, limpid, and transpicuous.

ASK YOURSELF THIS: Is that big word REALLY necessary?

8. Use Italics, Boldface and Punctuation! One of the pitfalls of emailing the inability to convey emotion. Often your correspondent won’t understand if you are serious or kidding, happy or sad, frustrated or euphoric … unless you are EXPRESSIVE! So, use italics bold, underline and the like to highlight key words that show the person exactly what you want to say. Otherwise, your opinions, statements and stories will be misinterpreted.

ASK YOURSELF THIS: Is the architecture of your writing digestable?

9. Exclamation points. When used effectively and sparingly, exclamation points are awesome! They completely alter the emotion of the sentence. So, don’t be afraid to use them. On the other hand, you don’t need one in every sentence! People will think you’re on drugs! And they will freak out! Ahhh!!!!

ASK YOURSELF THIS: Are you scaring your email recipients?

– – –

By the way, this article was longer than I expected, so part 2 is coming soon!

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
How approachable is your email?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
For a copy of my list called, 65 Things I Wish Someone Would Have Told Me When I First Started My Company, send an email to me, and I’ll send you the list for free!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

How many unsolicited referrals did YOU get this week?

Tune in to The Sales Channel on NametagTV.com!

Watch video lessons on enabling customers to buy!

37 Words that Should NOT be in Your Company Name

Hello! My name is Bob Johnson.
I’m the owner of a company called ACX Advertising Advisors Unlimited.

Greetings! My name is Sharon Smith.
I’m here with Super Creative Communications Corporation International.

Good morning! My name is Randall Stevens.
I represent Industrial Graphic Management Solutions and Investments Company.

Howdy! My name is Janet Bishop.
I’m the CEO of Premiere Branding, Marketing, Advertising Communications and Investments.

No.

No, no, no, NO!

Your company name sucks.

In fact, if your company name includes any of the following words, you’re in trouble:

1. Advertising
2. Advisors
3. Associates
4. Branding
5. Communications
6. Company
7. Consultants
8. Consulting
9. Corp
10. Corporation
11. Creative
12. Deluxe
13. Enron
14. Enterprises
15. Graphics
16. Industries
17. International
18. Investments
19. Kwik
20. Management
21. Marketing
22. Materials
23. Partners
24. Premiere
25. Presentations
26. Products
27. Promotion
28. Services
29. Shop
30. Solutions
31. Store
32. Super
33. Systems
34. Tech
35. Technologies
36. Ultimate
37. Unlimited
38. (Or, ANY acronym whatsoever. With the exception of IBM.)

See, here’s the problem.

If your company name contains words like these, it sends the following messages to the world:

1. You’re LAZY. You don’t care enough about your company to take the time, effort and money to do it right. Nice pride.

2. You’re AMATEUR. You clearly don’t understand the value of remarkability or crafting an identity for your organization. Read “Purple Cow” for God’s sake!

3. You’re UNORIGINAL. You created a generic company name. Which probably means you’re a generic company. With generic employees. Who produce generic products and deliver generic service. Which is a problem, since most people don’t want to pay for average.

4. You’re UNCREATIVE. And that’s going to trickle down into every other entity of your business. That can’t be good.

5. You’re UNPROFESSIONAL. And customers are going to take you less seriously. Which means they will buy less. (Also not good.)

Of course, that’s just the perception.

Doesn’t make it true.
Doesn’t mean you’re a bad person.
Or a bad company.

However, perception is __________.

Reality.
Currency.
EVERYTHING.

SO, THIS BRINGS UP THE QUESTION: When was the last time you hired someone who (you perceived as being) lazy, amateur, unoriginal, uncreative and unprofessional?

Yeah. Didn’t think so.

Interestingly, the Great Place to Work Institute and Fortune Magazine recently named America’s Top 100 Employers to Work For in 2008.

Take a look at this list. What language trends do you notice?

1. Google
2. Quicken Loans
3. Wegman’s Food Markets
4. Edward Jones
5. Genentech
6. Cisco Systems
7. Starbucks
8. Qualcomm
9. Goldman Sachs
10. Methodist Hospital System
11. Boston Consulting Group
12. Nugget Market
13. Umpqua Bank
14. Network Appliance
15. W. L. Gore & Associates
16. Whole Foods Market
17. David Weekley Homes
18. OhioHealth
19. Arnold & Porter
20. Container Store
21. Principal Financial Group
22. American Century Investments
23. JM Family Enterprises
24. American Fidelity Assurance
25. Shared Technologies
26. Stew Leonard’s
27. SC Johnson & Son
28. QuikTrip
29. SAS Institute
30. Aflac
31. Alston & Bird
32. Rackspace Managed Hosting
33. Station Casinos
34. Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI)
35. TDIndustries
36. Nordstrom
37. Johnson Financial Group
38. Kimley-Horn and Associates
39. Robert W. Baird
40. Adobe Systems
41. Bingham McCutchen
42. MITRE
43. Intuit
44. Plante & Moran
45. Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta
46. CarMax
47. J. M. Smucker Company
48. Devon Energy Corporation
49. Griffin Hospital
50. Camden Property Trust
51. Paychex
52. FactSet Research Systems
53. VSP-Vision Care
54. CH2M HILL
55. Perkins Coie
56. Scripps Health
57. Ernst & Young
58. Scottrade
59. Mayo Clinic
60. Alcon Laboratories
61. Chesapeake Energy Corporation
62. American Express
63. King’s Daughters Medical Center
64. EOG Resources
65. Russell Investment Group
66. Nixon Peabody
67. Valero Energy
68. EBay
69. General Mills
70. Mattel
71. KPMG
72. Marriott International
73. David Evans and Associates
74. Granite Construction
75. Southern Ohio Medical Center
76. Arkansas Children’s Hospital
77. PCL Construction
78. Navy Federal Credit Union
79. National Instruments
80. Healthways
81. Booz Allen Hamilton
82. Nike
83. AstraZeneca
84. Stanley
85. Lehigh Valley Hospital and Health Network
86. Microsoft
87. Yahoo!
88. Four Seasons Hotels
89. Bright Horizons Family Solutions
90. PricewaterhouseCoopers
91. Publix Super Markets
92. Milliken
93. Erickson Retirement Communities
94. Baptist Health South Florida
95. Deloitte & Touche USA
96. Herman Miller
97. FedEx
98. Sherwin-Williams
99. SRA International
100. Texas Instruments

– – –

I know, I know. I counted too 🙂

Associates – 3
Company – 1
Enterprises – 1
Group – 4
International – 2
Investments – 2
Markets – 4
Store – 1
Systems – 4
Technologies – 1

So, FINE. There will always be exceptions.

But, see, those few companies can get away with it.

Because they were the FIRST company to use that word.
Because they’ve been around a LONG time.
Because make BILLIONS of dollars.

YOUR company, on the other hand, doesn’t.

You’re not Adobe Systems. Or The Boston Consulting Group. Or The Container Store.

You’re YOU.

Which is good! You wouldn’t want to be anyone else.

THE CHALLENGE IS: You need to dig deep and discover the remarkability that lay within.

Oh yeah. It’s there.

Waiting for you.

Crying out, “Use me! Use me! I’m cool! I can help grow your business!”

And you need to listen.

Because you DON’T want a generic company name.

See, generic names = generic products.
And generic products = generic value.
And generic value = generic service.
And generic service = generic BUSINESS.

And generic businesses … rarely STAY in business.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
Does your company name suck?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
For the list called, “74 Qualifying Questions to Test the Net Worth of Your Company Tagline,” send an email to me, and I’ll send you the list for free!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Starting your company? Naming your company? Renaming your company?

Holler at me.

Rent Scott’s Brain today!


NametagTV: The Listening Environment

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To watch the original video and join the discussion on The Nametag Forums, click here!

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
How are you using your ears as a sales tool?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
For a list called, “31 Questions to Test Your Listening Skills,” send an email to me and I’ll send you the list for free!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Who’s telling their friends about YOU?

Tune in to The Marketing Channel on NametagTV.com!

Watch video lessons on spreading the word!

On punching people in the face

You can’t count on people to connect the dots.

Not any more, at least.

Here’s why:

1. There are an infinite amount of messages, noise and choices.
2. Attention spans are rapidly diminishing.
3. People (seem to) have ZERO time.
4. People (seem to) have even less patience.
5. Service offerings are poorly defined.
6. Nobody (really) knows what you actually do.
7. And customers crave simple.

So, you need to make it really, really obvious.

In person.
On your website.
Within your marketing materials.

IN SHORT: You need to punch people in the face.

Not literally, of course.

Respect is always your marketing mantra.

However, in order to win the battle against the Attention Economy, it’s almost as if you need to grab hold of people by their shirt collars and say, “Listen to me! Right here! OK, yes, you. This is exactly what I want you to do…”

See, complexity generates contemplation.

And contemplation kills sales.

You need to punch people in the face.

Several examples:

o When people come to your website, they need to know (IMMEDIATELY) what it is you want them to do.

o When you’re giving a speech, people need to know (IMMEDIATELY) what you want them to look at on the screen.

o When you’re finished sharing any form of information, people need to know (IMMEDIATELY) what the call to action is.

You need to punch people in the face.

NOTE: This philosophy may sound a little rash – even unapproachable, yet it CAN be done with respect. And tact. And without overly interrupting people’s daily lives, yet still getting your message through.

JUST REMEMBER: Your customers are busier, faster and more overloaded than ever before.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
How are they going to remember YOU?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
For the list called, “74 Qualifying Questions to Test the Net Worth of Your Company Tagline,” send an email to me, and I’ll send you the list for free!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Who’s telling their friends about YOU?

Tune in to The Marketing Channel on NametagTV.com!

Watch video lessons on spreading the word!

I respectfully disagree

OK, fine.

So you can’t agree with EVERYBODY.

That doesn’t mean you have to be a jerk about it.

You can still oppose someone’s viewpoint while maintaining your approachability.

See, responding to someone by saying, “I disagree” might make her feel…

o Stupid
o Wrong
o Resistant
o Defensive
o Threatened
o Personally attacked

And that’s no good.

So, here’s my suggestion.

Try saying, “I (respectfully) disagree.”

It’s more approachable because it…

o Loosens the blow
o Positively frames the argument
o Shows esteem for others’ viewpoints
o Makes room for both sides of the story
o Demonstrates a willingness to open a mutually shared space for discussion

Yep. Respectfully. One simple word changes everything.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
What’s your favorite word that changes everything?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
For the list called, “71 Words Customers Never Want to Hear You Say,” send an email to me, and I’ll send you the list for free!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Satisfaction not enough?
Customers not telling their friends about you?
Want to learn how to deliver unforgettable service?

Buy Scott’s new book and learn how to get your frontline IN line!

Pick up your copy (or a case!) right here.

27 Reasons People Aren’t Listening to You

1. They just don’t care.

2. They haven’t been listened to first.

3. They’ve already heard enough lies.

4. They’re just waiting to take the stage.

5. They’re too busy reacting defensively.

6. They’re tuning you out as a defensive device.

7. They’re too busy trying to change you first.

8. They’re too interested in their own minds.

9. There’s too much noise, internally and externally.

10. They’re only speaking just to hear themselves talk.

11. They think they already know, um, EVERYTHING.

12. They’re impatient and want the bottom line, not your story.

13. They’re not open to what the you’re really trying to say.

14. They’ve resigned to the fact that they’re terrible listeners.

15. They have the human urge to be recognized and affirmed, which means they’re too busy TALKING.

16. They’re too eager to appear sympathetic and a good listener.

17. They’ve never been taught (or learned how to) listen properly.

18. They’d rather give advice, since doing so makes them feel important.

19. Their defensive reactions replace understanding and empathy.

20. They’re afraid they might hear things they don’t want to hear.

21. They assume they already know what you are going to say to them.

22. They avoid conflict because they’re too busy protecting themselves.

23. They think they already know what the other person is (trying) to say.

24. They live in a hyperspeed, A.D.D. culture, and they don’t think they have time to listen.

25. They don’t want to lose (or risk losing) control of the conversation or in general.

26. They’re afraid that they might actually come to see something differently, and maybe even change their mind.

27. Their emotional reactivity was triggered by something you said, and it became so loud (internally), that they couldn’t hear your words (externally).

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
What do you think causes people (not) to listen?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
For a copy of my list called, “13 Roles of The Listener,” send an email to me, and I’ll send you the list for free!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Is your frontline IN line?

Tune in to The Frontline Channel on NametagTV.com!

Watch video lessons on delivering unforgettable service!

In defense of without

So, I’ve been studying a lot of the Tao De Ching lately.

Got me thinking about the concept of “without.”

Examples:

Work without rewards.
You’ll get more done.

Compete without results.
You’ll have more fun.

Nurture without possessing.
You’ll become less attached.

Give without condition.
You’ll become more fulfilled.

Govern without self-importance.
You’ll lead most effectively.

Have without possessing.
You’ll be less upset when you lose it.

Lead without controlling.
You’ll inspire and empower.

Lead without dominating.
You’ll (actually) get people to follow you.

See without preference.
You’ll see even more.

Teach without words.
You’ll have more students than ever.

Perform without actions.
You’ll get a standing ovation every time.

Give without expecting.
You’ll get it back eventually.

Illuminate without dazzling.
You’ll make the best impression.

Act without expectation.
You’ll be cool and focused.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
What’s your example of a “without” philosophy?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
For the list called, “157 Pieces of Contrarian Wisdom,” send an email to me, and I’ll send you the list for free!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Never the same speech twice.
Always about approachability.

Watch The Nametag Guy in action here!

NametagTV: Giving People Permission

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Or, join the conversation about permission in The Nametag Forums!

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
How do you give your employees permission?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS…
For the list called, “79 Questions Every Manager Needs to Ask,” send an email to me, and I’ll send you the list for free!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

If they can’t come UP to you; how will they ever get BEHIND you?

Buy Scott’s new book and learn daily practices for becoming a more approachable manager!

Pick up your copy (or a case!) right here.

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