Showing posts with label Business. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Business. Show all posts

When opportunity knocks: take a seat and be prepared to listen



This is where I will blog about a buying experience and the lesson to be learned extracted by defining how I want to be treated as either a consumer or a buyer (corporate or entrepreneurial).  Foot for thought on starting at the bottom and working your way up the food chain.

My Editor:  Oscar the Pug is a no nonsense taskmaster who does not heed excuses, nor does he rely on warnings, he wants to be objective and come to his own conclusions.  Thankfully, he reflects many of the qualities I like to think I have or continue to work on.

I did set up a website so that I can help others create their own online social media personality, whether by authentic name or invented character of charm.  It is called www.graFX.online.  I did launch a Blogspot blog for this graFX > see right sidebar link by scrolling.

I have to practice what I preach by setting up, executing and successfully launching a self-sustaining identity.  As always, I share my learning and leanings along the way.  Shortly after I launched this blog 8 years ago [ March 2010 ] I caught on to the numbers that there seemed to be some nibbles on the stories where I used social media experiences and education accumulated from trial and error.





I've used some blog space to opinionate on how current world events are in line with demographic trends based on numbers, which are based on hard facts.  

I've used another to exhume frustration and avoid rantings on meanderingABOUT singularly focus on my generation of inBETWEENers (those born 1960 to 1965/69 inbetweeners born after BABY BOOMERS and faded as GENx boomed and how those hitting 50+ are facing some events unprepared for:  YUPPYdom; family dynamics, blending families, being a mother, wife, daughter, sister.

I started using forwarding technology to customize my relationship with followers as normal day to day life or life threatening crisis happen, tend to interfere and hamper.


BAIT and SWITCH: is NOT the RIGHT way to SELL




Since I began writing this blog 8 years ago (Happy Anniversary to me .... la la la LA LAAAAaaaa) I have written mostly on sales.  That is what I know best and if I had to be honest:  my sweet spot.  I was only good at the whole thing because I could juggle a lot of things at once, more than just multi-tasking.  Juggling rapidly while balance with one foot on a big rubber ball!

The other thing has been honing in my judgement skills.  For the most part, I've been optimistic, naive, and too trusting.  There might be more things others would call me that would ruin the positive spin that I try to churn out:  believable, honest..... to ... will she ever shut up?  To a talent at being able to drown people out (my husband).  

Maybe there is some loneliness that is escaping in bubbles, where every day seems to be like climbing Mount Everest, in slow motion, more tiring the next day than the day before.

For entertainment while I am doing some dreaded chores, I'm releasing a zest of battling so much negativity and worry in my world to a more peaceful and calm one.  



The rollercoaster I knowingly and if not completely willing to the wolves of sales people (my ulter ego) to do a few of the things that Rob would have on his HONEY DO list.  Since he has passed 9 weeks of remarkable progress, I have given myself permission to write a little and express myself so that I don't keep everything up inside or explode!

Looking at the opportunity to purchase things as a responsibility, when you partner is out of the picture in more ways than one, left solo to buy things that I would push and he'd try to push back on his domain.  We'd compromised by having our home tactically divided, evacuated by four, now adult [Millennial] blended family children.  Too big practically for two of us, but easily filled up with our respective and joint treasures.



So I tippy toe into trying to get the roof fixed on my home.  Something that I had thought I had signed off on almost two weeks ago.  Sending an email yesterday after visiting Rob at the hospital, a 6 days a week devotion.  I asked the insuror if their company was taking their business for granted, because to make my life easier, I had said to whomever that had called that I was not going to project manager them, just let me know when they will be here, what do I owe, and when will they be done ETA.  John left a card tucked into my door jam, along with the Census Taker's postcard.  

I took it to meaning that John was from the company that the Insuror had designated and I'd excepted.  It wasn't until halfway that I figured out where both John and I were puzzled:  I explained that I had assumed he was from the contractor to do the roof sent by the insurance company.  John was puzzled, because he usually had really great, efficient records, even able to produce a print out of all the homes he'd done in the area (this was a follow up from his cold call because I thought he was really from the Insuror).



Call it fate.  Regardless.  He sent me his quote.  I sent him my answer, which I am transparently sharing.  I only used John's name .... no privacy was infringed upon.

I'll let you know how it pans out.

/jm



Hi John 

Nice to meet you earlier today.  Apparently, confusion on my part pending completion of our roof stumbled you into the opportunity.  As I mentioned, as a sales gal by heart, I'm a big fan of giving people a shot just by the fact that they do a face-to-face OR telephone cold call - really, a lost art. 

One of my former bosses eventually figured out after a few years when I was in sales, that part of my skill had nothing to do with what was coming out of my mouth (which usually is exhausting enough) or how I was able to configure or negotiate a deal.  I became skilled at reading upside down.  So usually I can remember something that is being said and what had been coming out of my mouth resonated in some way, thus the note.  I just began to read upside down.   

Your whole proposal and Compliance Information is superb and REALLY nicely done - where did you come up with that idea?  I'd love to create one for my brother-in-law's business because when he does well in his business and my sister is happy and he is sending us to Mexico together ..... he has a furnace cleaning business with 15 as an entrepreneur -- you'd actually find value by networking or having a coffee in your MAN CAVE -- I'm pretty certain you'd find synergy and pockets of knowledge each other would learn mostly because of your shared interest of living a quality life and doing what you have a passion for, which is far more rewarding than the baZILLIONs you made a stock broker.  That IS amazing! 

I was wondering ..... I saw you wrote the number of Insuror payable $5600 dollars down and $2600 what my contribution should be for a total of $8200.  Did you factor these numbers into your equation when you came up with your price?

  I did really like the bait and switch technique:  give me comments that hint of a better deal from you with less out of pocket expense and a better product.  I do have a sharp memory when it comes to numbers and the visual of what you wrote down. 

That is why I was wondering why you would come in more expensive or whether this is a negotiation technique of barter ready response? 

Sincerely, Jeannette 

If you want to resend a new estimate, that would be fair for another 24 hours -- it is 1
 a.m. MST Calgary, April 27, 2018.



Defining a productive and successful business relationship

TRUST
If you say you are going to do something either as the client or the service provider/vendor make sure that you do it!  Most executives, buyers are skeptical that a sales professional will do what they say they will do, when and in the manner promised.  Be known for being either an organization or sales professional who is valued because they deliver on their promises, in the time frame and at the agreed price. 
  
EXPECTATION
It is often forgotten, on purpose, to outline what both parties expectations are.  Clear communications between whoever is making the promises with whoever is tasked with delivering on those expectations.  i.e.  Quantity, quality, dates, service, follow up.  With big companies, it is often drawn out as an implementation plan or shown as an SLA -- Service Level Agreement -- and updated frequently to show the HOW both parties will define successful delivery and/or completion.  
UNDER PROMISE+OVER DELIVER
Often the company offering the product or service allows its representatives to blindly make promises without comprehending shortcomings i.e. inventory, personnel, scheduling, quality.  Don't allow anyone who represents you as either the seller or buyer to bait and switch.   On the flip side:  be apprehensive of clients who make promises on huge volumes that dictate discounts and reality is far below projections.    It shouldn't be left up to the seller to accept honoring lower prices on higher volumes without the expectation that the prices will reflect the correction required until the volumes are met, or agreement is made on how that will be handled/communicated/
adjusted.

COMMITMENT
The perfect business relationship is when both parties respect and honor their commitment.  Many think that is one-sided with the buyer in the power position.  However, a respectful business relationship ensures that the buyer pays promptly under the terms that is agreed upon.  The value of a buyer can be undermined by late payments or having to be hounded for payment which drains resources and distracts from the forward momentum initiated by agreeing to do business together.  Having said that, the seller has to ensure that its vendors are paid promptly to avoid a service freeze due to timely payments.

SUCCESS
A better, stronger business relationship is when both parties understand their role, lay out the expectations, AND deliver on their commitments.  If the seller is a start up, an internal road map is drawn to visualize how they get from Point A - a sale to Point B - being paid.  All the nuances in between should never be explained to a customer because showing customers that you are an organization that takes its customers seriously and ensure that whoever is selling for them is set up for success.

​This article was originally posted as a response on Alignable to the question: 

What do you feel helps build strong business relationships with clients?


 Jeannette imparts wisdom and sales savviness on her blog optioneerJM where she has developed a reputation with her audience to share helpful answers for business.

Stray the course

"Stray the course every once in a while.  Be innovative and a creative thinker."
~Jeannette Marshall
@optioneerJM



It has occurred to me that so many of the world”s woe would be mended and solved into a peaceful Utopia of world reviving the sun and our major offtime is shrouded in darkness,  probably fine for the fewer nocturnal humans - if we stopped “if” or “either” “or” one or the other of just about anything.

Brilliance would abound if companies stopped either your the doers or the workerBees.



I’ll show a third component strongly urged to consider: remove the worst factor in most employees’ minds: to fall onto either heep where the “either” is the most repulsive to you xx you never hear the good news first in an either or situation.  

Thinks about it as you take a few deep breaths: I am just guessing without any evidence, just instinct with logic stealing my course.

I reported to an executive once who’s favourite directive, delivered with flourish would say: “Stay the course!”

In the end meaning either you produce OR perish was the sizzle amongst all that steak where you were a workerBEE or you are a DOer.

Looking back now, I’ve had this attraction to reading my RECOMMENDATIONS on +LinkedIn when I’m going through turbulent waters whether Work or Personal life.  One of my former colleague wrote one for me stating that I “stay the course” just now realizing it.


In general, in life there are the matches by culture, upbringing, beliefs of multitude categories and sub sections which spread out as waves upon the ocean making it infinitely more possible that no two opinions match, merely bounced off one and another of either conflict or harmony.

Taking this as a hypothetical example, either seem to be in a state of either conflict or chaos with the longing for harmony.  By bringing in a third element infused with technology you are more likely to thrive.



I’ve bounced from a DOer to a workerBEE and fell into a cultural shock.  Not really too bad unless you’ve acted like a queen before the high/nose dive into the pit.

Injecting a hyper performer among coasters or followers can create havoc.

BY INVITATION: A conversation with Dr. Marie Delorme, recipient of The Order of Canada

The Order of Canada medal SOURCE (Canadian Encyclopedia.ca)


I like to think I pay attention to what goes on around me online.  I'm tuned in on most social media channels, with Linked In being one of my go to's.  One of the features I like the most is when one of my network contacts is in the news.  I was thrilled to discover this wonderful nugget of accomplishment on my timeline that Dr. Marie Delorme was recognized as the recipient of The Order of Canada - see sidebar.

As I do most often, I re-posted this distinguished award on my feed and sent a personalized congratulations message to Dr. Delorme.  She responded quickly, humbly and graciously.

Marie has been called an entrepreneur, a business leader, a Metis woman, an Indigenous person, a Ph.D. doctorate, a creative leader.  Now she can add Order of Canada recipient to her impressive bio.

I asked Dr. Delorme for permission to write a blog in the form of asking a bunch of questions for her to answer.   What unraveled was a glimpse of a magnificent woman who gives more of her self than most business leaders do in a lifetime.  

Dr. Marie Delorme


Who do you want to be identified as?  (i.e. Mother, wife, daughter, sister, CEO, Indigenous woman, woman, feminist, business person, Calgarian, Canadian. 
I am an entrepreneur, mother, feminist, a Métis woman originally from Manitoba but a Calgarian for the past 32 years.

What did you want to be when you grew up?
My brother and I grew up in a farming community. A special treat was buying comic books for 10 cents at the little store a mile down the road. My brother taught me to read them before I went into grade one. I wanted to be a DC character like Superman, Supergirl, or Wonder Woman.

Besides "everything will be okay" what would you tell your 12 year old self?
The next 10 years mark a journey that will be the hardest you will navigate in your life. Know that you have the strength and endurance to see it through and wonderful adventures are coming your way. Tough times do not last, but tough people do.  

Who or what has been your greatest influence?  Event or Person? 
Throughout my life, many people have formed my journey. Some, like my grade 10 teacher, introduced a love of literature; my brother had the patience to teach me to drive as a teenager; my son gave me the unique experience of being a mother and now a business partner; an Indigenous woman elder in Winnipeg is in her 80s and is a role model for love, patience, and inner beauty; my best friend for the past 48 years has a wonderful family who gave me a sense of belonging and love in my teen years. And, of course, there are the people I have never met but who were role models and influencers. They are musicians, writers, actors, and poets. And the everyday people who accomplish great things; who may briefly make the news; but who contribute to society in meaningful ways. All of these people and many, many more have influenced me. I had the wonderful opportunity to come of age in the 60s and 70s -- a time that produced great social change -- The American Indian Movement, The Women’s Liberation Movement, The Vietnam War, and the Civil Rights Movement all influenced my thinking and values. And, of course, the very best music ever came out of that era!

What did your 80 y/o mentor have to say about this award? 
She sent a lovely email message, that included the phrase “yabba dabba do”!!!

Do you have a Metis women role model?  Woman role model?
Mae Louise Campbell from Manitoba who embodies a healing spirit and has dedicated her life to the knowledge that when women fully assume their rightful place as leaders, the world will find healing and peace.

Have you ever seen an ancestry/DNA result from your heritage?
 I know both sides of my lineage. On my father’s side back to the 1600s and over a century back on my mother’s side. Ancestry.com or DNA analysis would not add to that knowledge.

What is your connection to non-Ingenious persons? 
As Jane Elliott would say “there is only one race…the human race”

Before The Order of Canada, what were you most proud of?
Being the mother of an accomplished, self-actualized, strong, and compassionate man who has been my business mentor and my friend; and having the opportunity to play a small role in who he is today.

What has changed the most since you won the prestigious award? 
The wonderful connections with friend and colleagues over the past week, some whom I haven’t seen for decades! It has truly been a blessing to hear from so many special people.

Did you struggle in school or were you on the honor role?
 Although they were not formally educated, my parents always stressed the importance of education. Academic achievement was a given for my brother and me.


When you sought your education, went on your knowledge quest, what was most important for your to discover?
 A broader understanding and perspective of the world.


What was your PhD about?
It was an interdisciplinary PhD (Anthropology, Sociology, Business) focused on intercultural leadership in the context of economic development.

Do you mentor others?  In the community? Through associations via business?
Mentorship is an important part of giving back, or paying forward. The first formal mentoring role was through an Indigenous internship program in the telecommunications industry over 2 decades ago. For the past 8 years I have been engaged as a mentor in the Coady International Institute’s Indigenous Women in Community Leadership program.

What is the least likely thing for people to know about you?  Secret vice?
I thoroughly enjoy being with people, but regeneration is a solitary endeavor. I have been to many countries and often choose to travel alone. I like the adventure, the freedom, and the unique opportunity to meet people in circumstances and places that would not have otherwise manifested. The result is a litany of great stories and friendships around the world.

What is your solitary pursuit?  Reading memoirs, bios, thrillers, social media?  Hitting golf balls on the driving range? Watching TV or Movies?
Reading, riding my bicycle, catching up on some of the series that build up on my pvr.

Family, married, children, pets, community, friends?  (or all of the above) .... What keeps you balanced? 
Catching up with friends and loved ones across the country. I often try to fit in a visit over a bite to eat, tea, or a glass of wine when I am on the road. Almost 20 years ago my son bought me golf clubs and encouraged me to take lessons. Best move ever. Catching up with friends over a game of golf is one of the most rewarding, pleasant, and spiritual experiences. And if you really want to get to know someone, just spend 4 hours on the course with them, and you will learn everything you know just by observing how they deal with joy, disappointment, and stress!

What is your handicap in golf?  Have you taken lessons or relied on learning as your go?
  I can fairly consistently shoot in the low to mid 90s with the occasional game in the 80s. Of course, there is the inevitable “blow up” game where it all falls apart. It can be a humbling sport. I once read that golf is the perfect game because it can never be mastered.

Does your best game in golf mimic your best life lesson or business lesson?
 My best game was played on 3 hours sleep when my flight was delayed and I was not able to make alternate arrangements with the group. I asked one of the foursome to keep my score as I was fatigued. I shot an 81 … likely because I just wanted to get home to sleep! I have only repeated that once since. But I did get a hole in one at a tournament several years ago!



I noticed you checked your Linked In profile via mobile .... is that how you stay connected online most? (Mobility or Email or Social Media in order of usage/preference) 
I love technology. My iPad and iPhone are critical to organizing my business and personal life, and for keeping in touch with friends and colleagues. I only use social media for business linkages. I never work on planes. It is downtime. My iPad is loaded with books, movies, and tv shows specifically for passing time when travelling.

If you had to choose only one digital device, leaving all others behind, which one would it be?
 My iPhone.

What is your "go to" social media site?  
 LinkedIn.

Do you think you will write a book?  If so, what will it be about? 
Doesn’t everyone have a book they want to write? Perhaps one day.

What is your biggest pet peeve?
I spend a lot of time on airplanes and am forever baffled by the lack of etiquette displayed by some travelers. Perhaps that is the book, as I have a list on my iPad of over four dozen instances I have observed. Some examples are hard to believe if they were not experienced first hand.

I'd love to read that book on travel etiquette -- what is the most toxic that make other passengers uncomfortable?
 Any kind of personal grooming, not tidying the washroom after use, trying to fit an oversized piece of luggage into the bin thus delaying boarding, playing music or a video without using earphones. The most shocking was the guy next to me in the airline lounge who stripped down to his waist and changed clothes! Yikes…so many examples

The Beatles or The Rolling Stones?  ... who is your favorite musical artist?
The Rolling Stones always. And specifically, Keith Richards, the soul of the band. His memoir “Life” is a must read. He said “About myself I have no great illusions. I know what I am. I know what I’m good at and what I am not. I’m always hoping to surprise myself. But I do have a love of music and communication. That is the best I can do. And I can raise a good family too.”

What is your favorite movie?
 I don’t have a favorite, but am drawn to sci-fi and dramas. I rarely watch anything twice.

What is your favorite song?
 Too many to list, but a few that come to mind include: “Fields of Gold” written by Sting and performed by Eva Cassidy; Keith Richards “You Got the Silver” and “Trouble”; “Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves” from the third act of the opera Nabucco.

With this award, what has it allowed you to do that otherwise may not have presented itself?
Ask me in a few months…it has only been a week!

Did you watch the Golden Globe Awards? 
No.  

What was your personal reaction to the solidarity among so many diverse women with a common message?
 The voices of the thousands of strong women and men are collectively inspiring change that is so long overdue. This is the catalyst for a social movement that must impact every workplace and channel the outrage into legal, behavioral, and organizational transformation.




How has this award impacted your business?  Increased inquiries, increased orders, increased requests to connect?
Ask me in the future, it has only been a week!

Many who achieve greatness turn around and forage into public life.  Would you ever consider going into public service (aka politics)?
No. Never. I have great admiration for people who run for public office. Choosing that path takes a special kind of courage. It is so important that organizations like Equal Voice are supported; they are dedicated to electing more women to every level of political office in our country.  

In today's competitive environment, what do you think is the biggest challenge? 
The world in 2018, politically and economically, is uncertain and precarious. However, voices that have been silenced for too long are being heard. Voices from the “Me Too” movement, the MMIW Inquiry, and human trafficking. These are the catalysts for a societal sea of change.

What is your biggest challenge you face for 2018?
Finding the time to do everything I want to do, to not waste a minute, and to consistently shoot in the 80s in golf!



Predictions for 2018?  
I am not that prescient or confident that I can provide sage advice based on a prediction. Rather I believe in taking informed risks, leaving room for serendipity, and a little bit of luck. My brother often uses that saying: “funny thing about luck…the harder I work, the luckier I get”   

In the next five years I would like to see … happen? 
Forty years ago, we were talking about equality, love, diversity, respect, and peace. In so many ways we have moved forward; and in so many ways we have not progressed at all. The songs of protest and the songs of love of that era are as relevant today as they were then. The solutions do not lie in anger and hatred but in redefining the smallest of day-to-day actions and the largest of political and economic actions to achieve societal solutions. 

What do you want to be remembered for?
Many years ago, when I was in my 20s and was promoted into my first management role, a woman who was retiring imparted some sage advice. She said “There are very few women in these positions and you will be watched closely. But remember that at the end of the day, and that day comes for all of us, no one will remember your accomplishments. They will only remember how you made them feel in your presence”. Words to live by.


BIO:

Dr. Marie Delorme is CEO of The Imagination Group of Companies. She chairs the Chiniki Trico Board, is past chair of the RCMP Foundation Board, and serves on the River Cree Enterprises Board, the National Indigenous Economic Development Board, and The Canadian Centre to End Human Trafficking. She is also an adviser for the Coady International Institute, the Canadian Police College, Pathways to Education, and Save the Children Canada.

Dr. Delorme is a Member of the Order of Canada. She has received the Indspire Award in Business and Commerce; and was named as one of Canada’s 100 Most Powerful Women. Other awards include: the University of Calgary Dr. Douglas Cardinal Award; Alberta Chamber of Commerce Business Award of Distinction; Calgary Chamber of Commerce Salute to Excellence Award, and Métis Nation Entrepreneurial Leadership Award.

Dr. Delorme holds a Bachelor of Science degree, a Master of Business Administration from Queen's University, and PhD from the University of Calgary. Her research focuses on inter-cultural leadership.

The Imagination Group is an Indigenous corporation comprised of four organizations. Imagination, The Aboriginal Gifting Company is a nationally recognized brand in the promotional products and gifting industry; and is also a manufacturer of ceremonial tobacco. For 17 years Imagination has provided brand management services to industry, governments, and indigenous groups. Imagination Franchising and Authentically Aboriginal are complementary organizations, the latter being a not-for-profit entity. Imagination Consulting specializes in guiding organizations to operate more efficiently and profitably; focusing on value creation and offering clients a unique understanding of the spectrum of challenges that business leaders face – from long range planning to critical day-to-day business issues. The Imagination Group engages with clients in a thorough analysis of business operations and issues and the development of plans to address gaps and implement improvements. The Imagination Group consulting practice brings over 40 years of specialized business experience to our clients.

FACEBOOK:  https://www.facebook.com/nationimagination/
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To celebrate Dr. Delorme's accomplishment, donations may be extended to her charities of choice:



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(photo credit-Phillip Chin)

Communication rules


There are often repetitive messages in my blog writing and it is rewarding when someone of superior intelligence grasps the meaning behind the messages.

Mike and I began our Social Media journey at about the same time (2010) ::... I was nudged a little harder over the cliff into the abyss slightly before him, and became what I thought as an unlikely mentor to someone who was highly successful and brilliant in his own right -- a successful book launch being a key metric that I recognized early on as a method to delve into credibility online among the endless noise and self-promotion of many self-described "experts".

Steadfast still, I am firmly entrenched in the belief that nobody can define themselves as an expert, no matter how many followers one has.  It is derived from how others describe you:  what do others consider you knowledgeable about is one thing, being credited as an expert quite largely another.

Mike reached out to me a couple of weeks ago via email, one of the few entrusted connections online that have never been derived from a face-to-face meeting at an event, social or association.  Not even a telephone conversation.

Having a virtual or personal conversation with a man who is not a relative, business associate is frowned upon as it can lead "to other things".  However, you can still be disciplined in having rich conversations and exchange of knowledge and learning from others regardless of gender.   There is an invisible line that should never be crossed.  




During a isolated time in my life when I was a regular church attendee, I still recall a message that resonates today from a wise Pastor:  do not be afraid to create friendships or be asked for advice from the opposite gender.  However, there are some areas to stay far from to keep it from falling into a downward, unethical spiral:

  1. Include others in the conversation so that it is not isolated, clustered by only two (the Pastor suggested that he invites his wife to any meeting or event that he wants to avoid falling into the trap of questionable conversations, particularly marriage counselling).
  2. It is okay to sprinkle in nuggets about your life partner, spouse, wife or husband, children, as a distinct flag that you are if not always happy, happiest with the person you are with and have no intention to stray.  Cheating is not at your core values.
  3. Keep it professional so that at any given time, the conversation may be shared with a sibling, friend, child, parent, spouse, partner without any guilt.
  4. Keep the topic off of relationship radars:  particularly complaints about your partner's shortcomings, dissatisfaction with your relationship in any shape or form.  That should be with your church minister or mosque elder or mentor (sibling, parent, etc).
  5. You can have a respectful, fruitful relationship with a person of the opposite sex, when your radar clearly signals "in a committed relationship with not a sliver of disregard or disrespect of your life partner".
  6. Any of these apply to anyone with leanings towards same sex or transgender relationships.
You CAN have helpful, rewarding relationships with anyone so long as you know your boundaries and it is clearly communicated by not so much by what you say but how you act.