Why does the ‘bad’ stand out more than the ‘good’, and why do you feel compelled to share? You are the change agent.

I am writing this as a reminder for myself and hope that it will be a useful reminder for some of you. Admittedly, I am also to blame for perpetuating this horrible habit. You are pissed off because you’ve been done wrong, you feel compelled to tell the world. Do you share bad news with the same voracity that you share positive news?

These days, I would say it’s a 60/40 split. For me, good news can wait a few days while the poor experiences need to be logged in the webosphere immediately for fear that I lose sight of every detail. What if you were able to stop time and jot down somewhere so you would make sure to capture the good too, even if it weren’t so immediate?
I’ve started using Yelp Quick Tips to capture in the moment a few words that help me in writing a more comprehensive positive review when I have time. I also mix Quick Tips with the Notes and Voice apps on my iPhone to help me stay “in the moment.” 
I’ve been working on changing this habit – and I hope this tip helps you do the same. Let’s throw this adage “For every poor experience, that person tells another five people” out the window in lieu of a new one – “For every meaningful experience – good or bad, that person tells another five people.” 

New blog post: "Grade of Execution" Matters – Olympic Learnings For Everyday Life

It’s the difference between being on the team and being remembered for being on the team.
Last night, Evan Lysacek of US won the Gold Medal over Evgeni Plushenko by 1.31 points in Men’s Figure Skating, largely in part due to what the commentators referred to as “Grade of Execution“, or GOE. Both programs were technically extremely difficult. However, almost all of Lysacek’s jumps were delivered at a slightly higher quality than Plushenko’s.

I sat up thinking about this a while last night, even though I desperately needed the sleep given the week’s pace and today’s responsibilities (and of course this weekend’s obligations – are you going to the SF Chronicle Public Wine Tasting? It’s awesome!). I just couldn’t get it out of my head… “Grade of Execution” – it’s so applicable to everything you do. Who says it… oh yeah – Bryan Kest (legendary Santa Monica yoga instructor) in the first of a 3-series Power Yoga DVD – “It’s not what you do, it’s HOW you do what you do.” I always thought it was cliche, but he’s right (this is by the way my absolute favorite home yoga workout).

There it is again… Grade of Execution.

Think about this when you are feeling tired, frustrated, or just plain lazy. Consider everything that is happening around you. When promotions come up, when a decision is made on who the lead in the play should be, or who your go-to friend is when you’re down – it’s not good enough to just “get it done” … quality matters.

Happy Friday!

Give a better presentation – try this activity

This is my presentation tip for the day: From many presentations I’ve sat in on over the last decade, I know many of you struggle with this too:


I struggle with this – there’s often so much good material to share that I want to 1) make sure it gets out and 2) make sure my meeting participants have it for future reference”. However, if you use the tools you have in your meeting room – recorded meetings and slideshare with notes – you can make the most of the time you have in front of that person…instead of thinking about later and compromising the engagement levels when you’ve got a captive audience.

Whether it’s keywords, pictures, or charts – it will ALWAYS be more effective than a PowerPoint slide filled with sentences that you read verbatim and bullet points until the end of time. PowerPoint is a tool for you to use as talking points – to guide meeting and drive discussion.

Try this activity:
Presentation Zen compares Steve Jobs to Bill Gates when it comes to their keynotes here: http://bit.ly/daH0yP – Here’s one comparing Steve Jobs to Michael Dell http://bit.ly/apQPOs.

Take a slide from what you would consider an “effective” recent meeting and compare – which keynote are you closer to? In the age of content being around forever, take the time to live in the now – capture your audience while you have them in front of you. You’ll be surprised at how much more people will retain in an engaging and collaborative conversation vs. in PPT bullets.

9 Ways to Protect Your Pricing and Keep Your Customers

This is not just relevant for small businesses and not just B2C – across the board, building a value proposition that gives your customer more “bang for the buck” not only gives them more reason to stay with you, but gives you more opportunities to strengthen your relationship and keep them as a customer longer.9 Ways to Protect Your Pricing and Keep Your Customers : http://bit.ly/99YWPd