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You Own Your Future…

You Own Your Future…

As someone who is in the “hiring” game, I’m often contacted by people who want to “get in the pharma industry.”  I advise people, especially those who have no pharma experience, to get with someone who is in the industry and pick their brains.  The first step, I tell them, is to discover whether or not they will even like the position, and talking to someone in the industry is a great first step.  When talking to someone with NO sales experience, I tell them to get experience selling SOMETHING!  You need to get around people doing what you want to do to so you’ll know if it’s a good fit for you. 

In driving around for my job, I began listening to Ken Coleman’s show on XM Radio.  I’ve heard Ken talking about the Proximity Principle, which is his new book calling out steps to find your dream job.  The concept is perfectly aligned with my thoughts:  “To do what I want to do I have to be around the people that are doing it and the places it is happening.”  His advice is on target, so you should really take a moment to listen to it’s concepts!!

Excerpt Taken from Book Site:

Calling all job hunters, career changers and college grads! Feel like the career you want is just too far out of reach? You’ve got the tools—you just need the manual that will get you closer.

You’re not alone. 70% of Americans are unhappy with their jobs. You want more than a nine-to-five J-O-B. You want to know why it’s so hard to find work you actually enjoy. Author and career expert Ken Coleman hears these same questions from callers on The Ken Coleman Show:

  • Is it too late to start over?
  • Even if it’s not too late, what if I try and fail?
  • What will my family and friends think if I try something new?
  • Is my dream career even possible for me?

The mind-set and skill set Ken acquired early in his career—and shares daily with his radio listeners—is now a proven strategy that can work for you too. Ken Coleman will guide you toward the people and places you need to be closer to in order to succeed in getting a job you love.

The Proximity Principle demystifies the questions about who you need to know and where you need to be in order to find new opportunities.

When it comes to People, you’ll learn:

  • How to build relationships with qualified experts (and where to find them)
  • How to connect with professionals and learn from them as a resource
  • How to pursue a constructive and meaningful mentorship
  • What types of peers you need to surround yourself with (and who to avoid)
  • How to find companies and organizations that will help you continue to grow

When it comes to Places, you’ll discover:

  • The exact distance between where you are right now and where your dream job is
  • Where to go in order to get the skill set and education you need to succeed
  • The best location for you to soak up as much experience as possible
  • The places where you can start applying the skills you’ve learned
  • Most importantly, the exact place where you can grow and do work that matters

Break free from boring and land your dream job with The Proximity Principle.

Power of Self Reflection

Power of Self Reflection

I received this thought from one of my J&J company resources.  I found it a valuable thought, so I thought I’d share a portion of it here…

Occasionally, it’s important to stop and take time for self-reflection. Think about who you are and where you want to be in life. Thinking about these “big questions” can help you stay motivated to work toward your goals and can help you course-correct if you find you’re heading in a different direction. Here are some questions to consider:

1. What are my core values? Am I living up to them?
2. Am I giving my best energy to my daily activities and loved ones?
3. Where do I want to be in 5 years? 10 years? How do I get there?
4. Am I taking care of myself, physically, mentally, and emotionally?
5. What were my biggest successes and failures this year? What can I learn from those experiences?
6. What kind of impact do I want to make on the world?

Strive for Two Things Every Day…

Strive for Two Things Every Day…

In listening to Zig Ziglar Secret’s of Closing the Sale recently, I heard this quote:

Strive for 2 things every day…be the best you can be today, and learn something today that will make you even better tomorrow.

As easy as this sounds, “life” has a way of getting in the way and before you know it, another day has slipped away and you wonder…”Where’d the time go?”  That is a valid question, and is the first step in making this quote come to life in your evolution.

It takes focus and energy to bring this to life.

  • Be the best you can be today – prepare, plan, execute, analyze the results…repeat…repeat…and repeat.  What my career in sales and sales leadership has taught me is that success is a foreign concept to those who don’t plan and execute.  Laziness will always catch up to those who practice it.  It takes hard work to be your best, but why would you give any less to you or your employer?
  • Learn something today that will make you even better tomorrow – the concept of intellectual curiosity is one that has always come natural to me but appears to be foreign to some of my co-workers and family members through the years.  I have “bet” some of my reps $5 during a field day that I could learn something about their territory by asking questions of customers that they didn’t know already.  In most cases, I kept my money.  Simply keeping your eyes open and listening to what is going on around you will give you insights that you can leverage to become better tomorrow.  As Dave Ramsey has been known to say, the difference between you today and you ten years from now is the books you read and the people you meet.  Make those encounters count!!

Nobody is perfect, but all we can strive for is continuous improvement!  Who’s with me???

Write it Down!!

Write it Down!!

“A short pencil is always better than an long memory…so write it down!”

I ran into a former co-worker this week, and he quoted one of his former directors as saying something I had never heard before.  He said his old director would say at meetings…”a short pencil is always better than a long memory…get ’em out.

Now today I always struggle with using a pencil or a stylus…using paper or going paperless…but either way, I still agree with the concept of this quote.  I live in a world where we are all about the “call continuum”…the concept of progressing a call forward from one time to the next.  Nothing is more frustrating for me as a manger, and I’m sure for the customer also, to feel like we are just replaying the same call that has occurred multiple times before.  Many times when we stop and attempt to diagnose why this happens, it boils down to the rep not writing down what happened before so by default they ask the same questions and re-run the call again.

One of the keys that I truly believe separates “good from great” in sales is the applying the skill of consistently taking notes and reviewing those notes prior to sales calls so the time we spend is as effective and productive as possible.  I face this myself as a leader when I have interactions with my team.  I can’t count the number of times that I’ve left a conversation with a co-worker and 30 minutes later a follow up item pops into my mind that I should’ve asked about.  What a waste of time and energy that is!  The better I am at writing things down AND REVIEWING them before interactions, the more effective I will be.

The same is true for you…regardless of the industry or business you are in.  Write things down, whether using lead and paper or a stylus and tablet, so that you can keep up with what is going on and can become a more effective version of you.  Now go get busy!

Frank Martin – Basketball and Tough Leadership Lessons

Frank Martin – Basketball and Tough Leadership Lessons

I love this video from Frank Martin and his early days at USC.  The video title describes it as an **EPIC RANT**, and while I disagree with that description, you can tell he is visibly upset at his players.  Throughout this video, he drops some great pearls about life, leadership, work ethic, and basketball!

Here are a couple I found particularly interesting:

  • You gotta have pride in your work
  • You gotta invest yourself to be good
  • If you have no passion for what you do, you shouldn’t do it!
  • You control who you are everyday in your life…if you walk around with your head and shoulders down, you got no chance!
  • (about his players) If I’ve lost them, they better disappear
  • For the ball to go into the basket you gotta have courage and you gotta work at it
  • In life, you get what you deserve

All of these statements have a similar feel to it, which is far less common than it used to be…You have to take responsibility for your actions!  Don’t blame others, you aren’t a victim, you have created this situation you are in through a series of choices you made over time.

I posted another video from him in a previous blog post about his reaction to Castro dying (his family is from Cuba), and he speaks more about personal accountability in that one as well.

While he can be overly boisterous with his players during a game, this guy is deep into accountability and leadership.  Good stuff here!

Remember your three to do’s today (and everyday):  

  1. Learn something you didn’t already know
  2. Make someone smile you come into contact with
  3. Check a box…get something done today
It’s About Accountability

It’s About Accountability

image above originally found at “It’s Your Turn Blog”

I came across this short little video today while searching for a video explanation of the “Oz Principles.”  While only a couple of minutes long, it does a great job of calling out the 4 key steps in establishing a culture of accountability.

  1. Establish Expectations
  2. Gain Commitment
  3. Inspect what you Expect
  4. Provide Feedback and Consequences

This is a very timely video in my current leadership capacity as we begin 2019 and look to improve performance over 2018.  One of the key areas for my focus this year is landing on and establishing the critical few expectations for the team.  As simple as it sounds, if you can establish the expectations that will drive the performance you desire to have your team achieve, then you’re onto something!  In a world where you get pulled in multiple directions, however, this isn’t as nearly as simple as you’d like to think it would be.  It takes a lot of focus, analysis, and strategy to land on the critical few expectations that will drive the results needed to win in my company and yours also!

Take a look at this quick little video and I intend to break down each of these steps over the next 4 weekly blog posts and how I’m making it work in my business!

Now go out there and be successful in all that you do!