Archive for the 'Humor/Satire' Category

Aug 13 2015

I KNOW WHO YOU ARE

uncle sam GOTCHA!

 

The other day, I received a “How Your LinkedIn Posts Are Doing” email and was curious enough to click it. I was fascinated to learn that YOU (yes, YOU!) are among those who sometimes follow my ramblings, and that when I put all the clues together — I gotcha! I actually know who you ARE.

I examined the subject matter detail lurking beneath the surface of some of my targeted posts and came up with a description of YOU. Uh huh, YOU. (Isn’t this better than your favorite suspense movie?)

In fact, if you’re still reading, you’re certainly getting more revved up from the intrigue of what’s to come than what may have been prompted by news of the latest tech discovery: that a new device can now “read your iris and identify you FROM 40 FEET AWAY!” Good Grief! Do we even want to imagine what’s next?

So back to who YOU are. Let’s start with some good adjectives that definitely describe you, at least in part. Stay with me now. We’ll work up to the good magical stuff in a minute.

Let’s see — by every indication, I have determined (and for the paranoids: no, this is not psychoanalysis!) that on numerous occasions you are: rambunctious, risky, frisky, focused, frenzied, ingenious, inventive, innovative, impatient, volatile, excitable, rebellious, and welcome growth over stagnation. How we doing so far?

Well, if even just some of that sounds familiar, I will venture to guess that you have a strong urge to change things up, but that your forward motion thinking has had a tendency to get somewhat muffled, distorted, stuck, or obscured along the way. Yes? Okay, so it’s get-back-on-track time, or not? Seriously? Of course!

Oh, almost forgot . . .

here’s what I deduct about you:

YOU ARE:

A “FEARLESS” 40-50-something

salesperson (or salesy person)

who’s hooked on SHARK TANK!

You might even be an entrepreneur!

 How’s that? Look at it this way, you likely visited at least part of one or more of the following LinkedIn posts . . .

. . . and/or you probably visited one or more of the hundreds of posts at www.BusinessWorks.US on the subjects of sales, salesmanship, entrepreneurs, and entrepreneurship.

SO . . . On target or way-far-away? If it’s on target, you are at least thinking like an entrepreneur, and maybe even acting like one. You might actually be one! If it’s way-far-away, you are probably way-far-away too (!), and lack the lightheartedness to even read the last two paragraphs — you might consider just clicking off this post now and finding some calmer, more regimented (like government?) career recruitment site.

You’re still with me? I hope so. Because if you are, you’re also tough and stubborn — great entrepreneurial indicators. Now make it all come together for yourself (that’s “for your SELF”) and make your ideas work! It just takes commitment and acceptance of the fact that your behavior is your choice.

You already have whatever else there is that it takes! Not sure? Throw a few business words in the www.BusinessWorks.US Search Window (Some non-business things like: “Are You Breathing?” work well too!) and check your SELF out! Go for it! Oh, and keep reading my posts, thank you very much.

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Hal@Businessworks.US    931.854.0474

Open  Minds  Open  Doors

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

God Bless You and Thank You for Your Visit!

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Mar 13 2015

SELLING TO ZOMBIES!

HOW TO SELL TO ZOMBIES

 

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A recent study purports that: people are now spending more hours per day with
electronic devices than they spend sleeping!

 

Draw your own conclusions. Regardless of the details, it’s true that we ARE rapidly becoming a planet of ear-budded Zombies… not the Stephen King kind, thank heaven, but the daily, impersonal- and-unable-to-know-how-to-relate-to-others, heads-down, technologically-addicted, kind.

So, how do we sell through preoccupied minds? And regardless of titles, we’re all in sales. (Don’t we all “sell” ourselves to others all day? Every day?) And how hard is it to get cash, a date, acceptance, when our prospect’s mind is mid-game, mid-text, mid-music, mid-call?

Okay, so how do we sell to Zombies?

Today’s sales professionals have to work much harder at gaining undivided attention. But some of the most hard-charging salespeople turn to jellyfish at the thought of having to insist on having undivided attention before pitching their wares. Fear of being too intrusive? Fear of losing receptivity?

Bottom Line: You must eliminate more distractions than you think you’re capable of. In order to do that, you must take the risk of being pleasantly assertive before you start your spiel/pitch/presentation.

This translates to being like church, the movies, and pilots on takeoffs and landings — request your prospects to turn off their cellphones, tablets, laptops, intercoms and Dick Tracy wristwatches before you get going. Oh, and (unless you’re doing an online/on-screen presentation) make sure you do too!

External sounds and sights
distract internal reasoning

When did you last purchase something from the person in front of you while reading or sending a text message, making or taking a call, watching TV, or when others around you were doing that? It’s close to impossible to make a sale in an audio/visual-cluttered environment.

If you have a persuasive message to deliver, avoid noisy or TV-mounted restaurant settings, concerts, parades, movie theaters, shooting galleries, oil rig sites, airport runways, football games, school playgrounds, fire stations, the stock market floor. Staticky phone line or hectic office? Call back.

If the products or services you’re selling involve or produce sounds and/or moving images, demonstrate what you’ve got, then shut it/them down to talk. If you’re outdoors, suggest strolling to a quiet area.

High tech/electronic Zombies are not a lost cause

unless you allow them to be. Sales are your lifeline.

Don’t choose for interferences to beat you. Ask

prospects to step into the hall, or if you (or they)

can find a quiet room or area for long enough to

make your sales points.

Remember the age-old “AIDAS marketing formula: Attract Attention; Create Interest; Stimulate Desire; Prompt Action; Deliver Satisfaction. It’s hard to do any of these with electronic verbal and visual interferences on the surface (or under the table), or in people’s pockets.

All common sense?   Perhaps . . . IF you’re riding the electronics tide, fully conscious of your day-to-day environments, firmly embedded in here-and-now thinking, and recognize a Zombie when you see one!

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Hal@Businessworks.US               931.854.0474

OPEN  MINDS  OPEN  DOORS

Many thanks for your visit and God Bless You.

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

No responses yet

Feb 17 2015

FEARLESS SELLING!

What I’ve Learned About

 

FEARLESS Selling!

 

Speak up for what you want. If you don’t spell it out, no one will ever know where you want to go. Solicit feedback.

When you state a feeling, opinion or belief, SAY that it’s your feeling, opinion, or belief…instead of implying that you’re stating “facts.” Imagine standing in your listener’s shoes.

STOP saying “all” and “every” and “ever” and “never” because you’ll start to believe yourself…and others will start to doubt you..

When others tell you your idea won’t work, don’t believe them. Instead, give it a goal and a strategy. It’s easier to move forward with a map.

STOP, LOOK, and LISTEN isn’t just for railroad crossings. Ask questions, observe and listen hard. But as Einstein said, “all we ever have is limited knowledge”…so when it’s time to move on, go with what you know!

Turn off the news. Bombardments of negative, tragic events will invade, disrupt, corrode and corrupt positive attitudes. INSTEAD: Sing. Dance. Read. Laugh. Play. Walk. Take pictures.

Positive attitudes are preserved when you respond instead of react. If you don’t react, you can’t over-react. Learn to blame less and forgive more.

Stop worrying about how you look and pay attention to how you behave. Entrepreneurial leaders instill confidence and inspire action no matter what they wear. Contrary to popular myth: Clothes do not “make the man.”

Look everyone and every thing in the eye. Good contact, not staring. Looking at your feet or over someone’s shoulder broadcasts ambivalence and fear…feelings that fail to: sell, instill confidence, inspire trust, communicate authenticity, show interest.

When the competition gets tough, get tougher by being better informed, by delighting (not just “servicing”) your customers, and by being honest.

Keep your eyes and ears alert, and your mind open. Take more deep breaths to keep your SELF in the “here-and-now” as much as possible . . . because success is the journey, and expectations breed disappointment.

Remember your family, your friends and how to laugh. Above all: Trust your SELF!

Live. Love. Make it easy.

 Some concepts inspired by www.FEARLESStheMusical.com

9781935993735_cov.indd

 

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Hal@Businessworks.US          931.854.0474

Open  Minds  Open  Doors

Many thanks for your visit and Make today a GREAT day for someone!

No responses yet

Dec 02 2014

In Business Life, Age (50-60?) Matters

YOU’RE 50-60 YEARS OLD?

There goes your past. Here comes your future. But
it’s only this very minute —this very split second
as you read this sentence— that counts!

50-60 FEMALE HIPPY

Popular observations about your age:

YOU’RE 50-60 YEARS OLD

Congratulations! You’ve finally learned some stuff. You know better, for example, than to think you’re so omnipotently brilliant and untouchable—not weak by any means (you did after all get this far!)—you’ve simply become more realistic.

Realistic is good. More realistic is even better. At 50-60, you start going to church more than just weddings, funerals, Christmas and Passover, and you’ve given up worrying about your hair.

Your business enterprise is shaky but working (after learning from a handful of failures) as usual — and you live for your annual vacation, your spouse, and your offspring. Your new puppy just chewed up your tax returns, but that truck you always wanted is now in your driveway . . . and who knows? Ray Kroc was 57 years-old when he launched McDonald’s! Makes you think of trading in those daily nuts and healthy fruit for a drippy fat burger and those fries (Ah yes, the fries!) . . . am I right?

Yup! And, at long last, you’ve come to the point of accepting the reality that you may actually be a bit on the stupid side when it comes to home and car repairs, budgeting and bank account management, or selling yourself to get customers. You’ve no doubt figured out how to apply all the gems you learned in your school studies of Tree-Hugging, Trigonometry, and Global Warming to market your line of new improved toilet plungers.

Oh, and this is not even to mention your half-century (whoops! Sorry to mention that) of accumulated street-smarts that have prompted you to realize that you can be easily clobbered by a 20-something who cuts you off in traffic and that your best defense is to keep your middle finger in your pocket. Your love affair dreams have narrowed to a handful of gorgeous TV superstars and a neighbor with 9 children and 17 grandchildren swarming over the house, porch, yard and driveway 24/7. Oh, well . . .

REALITY IN LIFE AND BUSINESS:
Now is the only time!
How thankful are you to be who you are,
headed where you’re headed?

WATCH THIS BLOG NEXT WEEK FOR MORE
  AGE COMMENTARY~~~~ NEXT WEEK: 60-70
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Hal@BusinessWorks.US or 931.854.0474 or comment below

OPEN MINDS OPEN DOORS

Thanks for visiting. Go for your goals! God Bless You!

Make today a GREAT Day for someone!

One response so far

Mar 20 2014

MOVING – ONWARD AND UPWARD!

“Got here safe & sound, Y’all!”

 

AND STILL UNPACKING AND SETTING UP NEW OFFICES . . .

GUESS WHERE?????  Email your guess: Hal@Businessworks.US  (“New Office” in Subject Line) Winning guesses entered in drawing for a FREE first edition signed copy of HIGH TIDE fictionalized account of America’s biggest drug deal! See www.HighTideNow.com

Thank you for your visit.

If you’re new to this blog, please mark your calendar to return on April 16th for the beginning of Tax Return Recovery, and to help kickoff an exciting new series of posts you won’t find anywhere else!

If you’ve been visiting here regularly since the birth of my blog in April, 2008 (and now closing in on 1500 posts), thank you even extra!

You, especially, will want to return April 16th to see what’s in store for innovative, spirited business and healthcare professionals. You’ll get  proven new ways of thinking to boost your sales and make the most of your leadership skills — for profit and nonprofit businesses and professions alike. You’ll get coaching that works in the office and meeting room, on the phone and on paper, on the smartphone and the computer. You will get specific how-tos for building and enhancing your leadership posture in your industry, your marketplace, and your community.

When you return here April 16th, you will get the beginning of an input stream that no one else dares to share . . . on ways to feel better about your SELF (no product or service sales pitches, no lectures, no gimmicks). You’ll get ways to be encouraged, ways to make a difference with your career and family pursuits, ways to rise above the clutter.

You’ll get solid substance based on more years of experience than you probably are old. Not just passive observations, you’ll get frontline/hands-on experience with over 2,000 business consulting and return engagements AND with more than 20,000 students and management training participants. PLUS –as incredible as it’s always been–it will be free on this blog. Try it. You’ll like it. Send your friends.

In the meantime, to better serve our Entrepreneurial Clients (Including Business Startups, SalesPropreneurs©, Doctorpreneurs© and Corporate Entrepreneurs©), BUSINESSWORKS.US and TheWriterWorks.com, LLC will be in the process of relocating to another State. You’ll get the details as soon as we’re settled. In the meantime, Happy Spring!

See you the day after taxes!!!

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Hal@Businessworks.US

Open  Minds  Open  Doors

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

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May 24 2012

Couples Who Work Together

Mom and Pop Businessess

                       

Are Alive and Well In

                          

Every Industry

                       

and Marketplace

                                   

 

Because so many entrepreneurial ventures are launched, or brought on by, or result in hardworking people who also share a couple relationship (and because the marriage and work relationship I had with my wife lasted over 25 years), it seemed appropriate to devote a post to the subject. Maybe a couple of experience points here can benefit others?

  • FIRST: If you are in a love/work relationship and not killing each other every night, congratulations and God Bless You! You have somehow managed (or are at least still managing) to beat the odds. Being the spouse of a business owner or the spouse who is the brains behind the business owner (or are an involved but not-married business couple!) makes you special!

Very few relationships can withstand the attack on emotional, rational, and physical sensibilities that are brought on by the stress of running a business together, while living under the same roof. It’s important to stay “here-and-now” as much as possible. Have flexible, specific, realistic, due-dated goals (and write them down!), but remain focused on the present.

RELY ON HUMOR.

                                                          

It takes a special way of relating to one another that requires greater sensitivity and sense of purpose than  a typical marriage where one or both partners leave the home each morning and return each night. I have often counseled to paint a line around the bedroom doorway and threshold beyond which, business discussions are not allowed . . . and communicate, communicate, communicate! Listen, listen, listen!

  • SECOND: Extreme trust and extreme sacrifice are the two characteristics of successful work/love relationships that cannot be compromised under any circumstances . . . ever! The temptations will be endless, but violating your love/work partner’s trust or not pulling your share of the load spell instant business failure, and often instant relationship failure too!

This distills down to being constantly conscious of not putting yourself in situations that could undermine the well-being of either your work or emotional relationship. Don’t go out partying on your own. Don’t hang out at bars or strip-clubs or trade show suites when you’re on business trips. Don’t wear provocative outfits when you’re on the road or attending meetings. Making a business and a relationship work at the same time requires integrity.

In other words, don’t ask for trouble

 because you’ll surely find it.

                                                               

Working couples need to accept that friction will always be present. The trick is to work at making it be positive and productive friction. It takes far greater tolerance, patience and understanding than a non-working-together-couple relationship. The trade-off is that working couples–two people with one mindset–are almost always more effective and successful than flying solo.

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Hal@Businessworks.US    302.933.0116

Open  Minds  Open  Doors

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

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May 06 2012

Business is NOT life or death!

“If you think sometimes

                          

  that you just can’t win,

                      

remember that life

                       

is not a contest!”

— Kathy Alpiar

 

She reminded me of this shortly before her life struggles ended this past March at age 55. She had reminded me of it often over the last 25 years of our marriage . . .  almost always after my face retreated into my hands bemoaning some frustrating situation or another that I had somehow boxed myself into. I’m told everyone does this on occasion?

If you’re an American, you probably grew up with the conviction that everything you had to deal with every day –from school and Scouts to college or trade school and a career to marriage and family raising– was (is) a contest!

Admittedly, in a nation dominated by sports performance and competition at literally every level of life, it’s hard to grasp that “life is not a contest.”

But it’s NOT a contest.

(Workaholics, please re-read those last five words!)

  • Life is a gift. It is a blessing. We either consciously or unconsciously choose to embrace it, or choose to waste it.

  • Life is a waste when it’s obsessively dedicated to ultimately meaningless, make-believe values — making money, acquiring things, trying to impress, being self-serving and self-indulgent, putting others down, bullying, chastising differences, thinking and acting dishonestly.

                                                  

How much of our precious time on Earth is wasted each day trying to get even; trying to undermine, manipulate, or represent ourselves as more than what we are; trying to pretend; trying to bait those who are weaker into our arena so we can defeat them or make them look foolish? Can any of that possibly be serving our true best interests?

If the answer to that question about how much time, by the way, is anything more than one minute, it may be worthwhile to think twice about Kathy’s quote. In other words, is our purpose here on this planet to make a difference?

How important is integrity?

                                   

Kathy wasn’t suggesting that we all abandon competition and head for some mountaintop to meditate on our navels. Of course we have to be responsible to earn a living and pay our bills. But what she was saying was that there’s a whole lot more to life than having such narrow pursuits d-i-c-t-a-t-e human existence.

Entrepreneurs get pounded over the head with these finger-waving “take time to smell the flowers” thoughts because they tend to disappear into a product/service development zone to the exclusion of friends, family, and many of life’s joyful experiences. They substitute the pursuit of “success” to the exclusion of what’s around them. I know because I’ve been there.

But I’ve come to realize that return on investment is not the sole province of business. ROI has also to do with having an ongoing sense of humor, a conscious effort to cultivate only positive stress, making room in our lives for living, keeping our promises, and being perpetually focused on service to others. Thanks Kathy.

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Hal@Businessworks.US    302.933.0116

Open  Minds  Open  Doors

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

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Jan 02 2012

Creating Business Team Chemistry

 Great leadership

                               

 is not always transparent!

 

Every winning sports and business team has a sparkplug — THE one most enthusiastic, energetic, pumped-up, mover and shaker who ignites her or his teammates and gets them focused on achievement. 

Combined with what most of us might designate as leadership qualities… trust, authenticity, integrity, empathy, compassion, active listening, speaking clearly, sense of humor, teaching by example, et al…the single sparkplug ingredient, the piece that brings it all together, comes quietly from inside… and is not always transparent. 

Sparkpluggyness  is not tangible, obvious, or even evident in many cases. It is a fire-in-the-belly sense of desire and mission. True leaders exude it, and usually without ever even noticing or acknowledging it. It’s something that “just happens” as many have shared along their career paths.

So how does one begin to cultivate and nurture the characteristics that lead to rewarding practices of inside leadership? Do boosters work? Energy drinks? Coffee? Drugs? Ginseng?

One might best begin with a large dose of self-esteem, let that percolate into self-confidence, add a dash of deep breathing, proper exercise, enough rest, nutritional foods (and obviously eliminate addictive tobacco and alcohol products along the way), and work at mastering the ways of dealing best with your own stress.

Try whatever comes along until you find the one thing that best works for you. Is it jogging? Lifting? Yoga? Massage therapy? Playing with a pet? Pursuing a hobby? Swimming? Gardening? Painting? The answer is different for every single person. But you’ll never discover what’s best for you if you aren’t continually experimenting.   

This is all about getting in touch with your inner self and firing up that furnace. If YOU don’t know what makes you tick, you’ll never be able to know how to best figure out what makes other people tick, and how to best deal with them to get them motivated.

Even Maslow’s Theory of Motivation relies one-hundred percent on a manager’s ability to “size up” others to be able to best reward them at a level that’s most meaningful to THEM. If you give me a plaque when I most want a more impressive title, you’re wasting my interest and sense of teamwork. You will not gain my commitment.

This little piece of leadership need not be for public consumption: The more you know about what makes YOU go, the closer you are to understanding and motivating others, and the more you can succeed at getting others to achieve, the better a leader you become and the more you will accomplish, transparently or otherwise.

                                                                                     

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Make today a GREAT day for someone!

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Dec 22 2011

CHRISTMAS IN IRELAND

Updated From the Best of Hal’s Christmastime Business Posts . . . 

A toy truck, a stroller,

                                            

and pub coasters

                                          

strung with dental floss…

                                                                                                                        

                                                                                 

A few years ago, on a re-visit trip to Ireland, Kathy and I –romanticized by the classic Bing Crosby Christmas song, “Christmas In Killarney”– spent our first Christmas away from home at Killarney Country Club.

                                                       

 Up a rocky, grass-between-the-tires dirt road from downtown Killarney, jockeying “the wrong side” car controls to bounce cheerfully along between the endless stone walls that separated farm from farm and cows from sheep, we drove under a brick archway and into an historic-looking brick complex that held captive about three dozen two-story townhouses.

There was one other car at the far end. We parked and followed the “Office” arrow. We found a smiling, green-eyed, freckled face and bubbling thick Irish accented young lady at the office counter. We registered and unpacked. We were shown to a spacious two-bedroom upstairs arrangement with living room and kitchen downstairs. Our windows overlooked the property’s main courtyard and pathway to the Country Club Pub.

It seems when I think back that (after the first day of dealing with the one other car’s occupants — a rude tourist family of six that commandeered the odd three-feet-deep indoor pool), we were actually the only guests there for the rest of the (Christmas) week.

We made the trek into town everyday, a beautiful, historic, bustling hub filled with happy holiday shopping locals, who seemed to visit a shop or two, then stop in a pub, then visit a shop or two, then stop in a pub . . . you get the idea. And we drove hundreds of miles of picturesque unspoiled (and unlittered) countryside during the week, meeting only pleasant, accommodating-to-a-fault natives all along the way.

Night driving seemed a bit perilous, so we opted for evening visits to the Country Club Pub (the alternative was staying in our unit with three tv stations, two of which were German!). The only Christmas tree we could find ($45 American) made Charlie Brown’s look like Rockefeller Plaza. Our scruffy pine was about 30 inches tall and had about 16 (or maybe it was 14?) scrawny branches.

We had no ornaments, but confiscated a wide range of cardboard pub coasters in our travels, punched small holes in each with a fork, and strung them up with pieces of dental floss. A homemade aluminum foil star found its way to the top. We stuffed two ”Season’s Greetings”-scrawled plastic shopping bags with small sofa pillows and hung them in our windows.

We grocery-shopped for the all-time elaborate brunch of Irish rasher (bacon), eggs, cheese, jam, butter, toast, fruit, crackers, caviar, coffee, tea–  and a bottle of asti that (being entrenched deep in beer and ale country, cost 11 gazillion dollars American) tasted a lot better than it was.

We exchanged gifts we had bought the day before, walking down opposite sides of the downtown, waving in between passing cars, trucks, buses, pedestrians, and shopfronts, a book for me, a piece of Irish crystal and a little stuffed Irish Christmas Bear for her, plus some other goodies. It was great fun and everyone wished everyone Merry Christmas!!

Every minute we spent there was great, even when fifteen native Killarney guys had us singing with them (at the Country Club Pub where they’d hiked to by flashlight from their nearby farms) until 3am which led us to the hilarious discovery that no one there had ever even heard of the Crosby song, “Christmas In Killarney”!!! (I tried to sing it and they all looked at one another like I was from Mars.)

With the rows of “y’got ta finish dem” topped-off pints of beer and ale lined up from one end of the bar to the other, planted there when 11:15pm closing time came, it ultimately mattered not that anyone heard of any song as long as you sang. And sing we did! When Kathy was asked to present a song, she sang “Zippity, Do-da, Zippity-A…” which brought the house down.

So much for that, but it was a wonderful experience. Just one thing was missing. Family. We spent half the afternoon trying to phone home, with circuit connections going from where we were on Ireland’s West Coast, to Northern Ireland, to Boston, to Florida, to New York, to the clan in New Jersey who sounded like they were in a tunnel.

It made us realize that all the happiness of the week there was momentarily lost to being lonesome for family. We managed to bounce back after that when the resort manager and his wife (who we suspect might have been listening in to our phone connection efforts) invited us to their home for a Christmas drink. 

We got to see the doll baby stroller Santa brought for their daughter. (Last Christmas, Santa brought the doll!). I think their son got a toy truck. One single present each and those children were in heaven! Uh, it might be worth repeating that: “One single present each and those children were in heaven!”

That certainly gave us cause for pause. We in America are blessed with so much, and family is, well, what Christmas is all about now, isn’t it? It was a Christmas of great learning that stayed with us.

I truly hope for you that you enjoy what you have today, and not take any of it for granted.

Oh, one last thing: Please remember to God Bless Our Troops for their eternal vigilance that grants us the freedom we have to celebrate this joyous day and season! Enjoy!

 Peace be to you.

                        

The original of this Christmas story appeared on 12/25/08 on this blog site.

                               

God Bless You One And All

And Merry Christmas To You!

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Hal@Businessworks.US   302.933.0116

Open  Minds  Open  Doors

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

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Oct 23 2011

BIZ ALPHABET SERIES…”H”

Welcome to the world’s first SMALL BIZ Alphabet Series of blog posts!

 “H”…HUMOR

 

 

What’s “funny” to you may not be to others… imagine that!  So we who run our own small businesses (or small pieces of big businesses) might do well to be reminded thatHey, didja hear the one about the the guy with the parrot . . .? may not be the best kind of opening with a disgruntled employee, angry supplier, or irate customer.

In fact, the parrot joke (or any joke!) is probably not a great thing to share with anyone who’s come to you with wrinkled brow, mouth turned down, hands balled into fists, or who’s (defensive) folded arms are noticeable only second to being glared at over the tops of their glasses. Others do not always understand or accept what you mean.  

So, to make the best of things, smiling and laughing your way through it all is not always in your best business or personal interests, or those of the other individual or group you’re dealing with. The solution? Observe carefully and think twice, before opening your “funny story” mouth once.

Pretend for a moment that you are standing in line at a customer service center counter. You are holding a product you had saved up for and cheerfully purchased in time to enhance the upcoming weekend visit (your first) with your fiance’s parents. You know they would be impressed.

Yet when you went to put the thing together, parts were missing, directions were not in English, and the major component was cracked.

Here you stand, patiently quiet but shifting your feet as you try to decide if you should put the thing down on the floor or keep holding it. Each of the three people ahead of you takes 15 minutes to tell their 10-second story. As you stoop to pick up the damaged goods, which you thankfully decided to plant between your feet, guess what?  [Are you breathing?]

The customer service rep, who never noticed you anyway, apparently decided it was as good a time as any to leave, putting a “Gone To Lunch” sign on the counter and, in one quick whirl, disappear out the swinging door. You and the four others behind you stand there dumbfounded. The five of you start jabbering.

The manager notices the commotion, and strides up to the annoyed gathering with a smile and big greeting, followed by:

“You guys [3 of the 4 are women] remind me of the time when my uncle Louie went to the local pistol range [2 of the 4 had large peace-symbol jewelry showing] and the instructor asked Louie if he’d be using his gun , ha-ha-ha-ha, to shoot him for having to take his lunch hour at that very moment, ha-ha-ha-ha. You’ll have to return later.”  

[Ha-Ha-Ha-HA-HA-HA!]

You can imagine –as radio’s beloved Paul Harvey used to say– the rest of the story. This contrived incident may seem amusing from a distance, but trying to be funny at the wrong time in the wrong place with the wrong people will almost definitely succeed at making a bad situation worse.

Humor, real humor that turns on smiles and laughs comes from the heart and the guts, not an aspirin bottle. It is not a quick fix. It is an honest flowing response delivered in good judgement to those who have provided some clue that indicates they will appreciate your offering. Good humor is a gift. Real gifts are never forced.

                                        

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Hal@Businessworks.US    302.933.0116

Open  Minds  Open  Doors

Many thanks for your visit and God Bless You.

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