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5 P’s: Perfect Practice Prevents Poor Performance*

Posted on September 12, 2018 under Sales Management 101.

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“Training your employees can pay big dividends.

Sometimes, it’s easy to underestimate just how much it pays.

Consider an employee who is going to work 2000 hours for you this year. It’s not unusual for an organization to spend only 10 or 20 hours training this person–which means about 1% of their annual workload.

How much training would it take for this person to be 10% better at her job? If you invest 100 hours (!) it’ll pay for itself in just six months. There aren’t many investments an organization can make that double in value in a year.

But let’s take it one step further:

Imagine a customer service rep. Fully costed out, it might cost $5 for this person to service a single customer by phone. An untrained rep doesn’t understand the product, or how to engage, or hasn’t been brought up to speed on your systems. As a result, the value delivered in the call is precisely zero (in fact it’s negative, because you’ve disappointed your customer).

On the other hand, the trained rep easily delivers $30 of brand value to the customer, at a cost, as stated, of $5. So, instead of zero value, there’s a profit to the brand of $25. A comparative ROI of infinity.

And of course, the untrained person doesn’t fall into this trap once. Instead, it happens over and over, many times a day.

The short-sighted organization decides it’s ‘saving money’ by cutting back training. After all, the short-term thinking goes, what’s the point of training people if they’re only going to leave. (I’d point out the converse of this–what’s the danger of not training the people who stay?)

It’s tempting to nod in agreement at these obvious cases (or the similar case of getting, or not getting, a great new job based on how skilled you’ve trained yourself to be–again, a huge cliff and difference in return). What’s not so easy is to take responsibility for our own training.

We’ve long passed the point where society and our organization are taking responsibility for what we know and how we approach problems. We need to own it for ourselves.”*

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Craig J. McConnell

(Continuing to) Make Sales People Memorable 

1 Seaside Lane #203
Belleair, FL 33756
53 Chula
10902 Big Canoe
Jasper, GA 30143

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“It’s Only Your Voice Mail Greeting.” WRONG!!!!

Posted on September 3, 2018 under Attitude Adjusters, Sales 101.

Those of you who have worked with me  know that I can become somewhat maniacal when it comes to stressing the importance of having a good voice mail message (on your mobile device and at the office).

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In many cases, we’re talking about the first (and last?) impression you make on some one you have never met before.  You need to be good and you need to be  ’on’ your game.

Listen you your current voice mail message and ask yourself:  ‘would I call me back?” or is my VM message sending my callers to the competition?

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Here are some basics:

*start with a script,  practice it, record it, listen to it, re-record if you don’t like it

*speak clearly and slowly and keep it under 12 seconds (20-30 words)


*be friendly

*be creative and ‘cool’ and funny (if it’s consistent with who you are); Google it if you need assistance

*change your message bi-weekly

GOAL: make your voice mail message so unique that someone might tell someone else to call you just to hear your message.

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If you’re truly a unique sales person who brings value to your customers, you need a VM message that sets you apart from the crowd.

Make it a great week, always be memorable, pay it forward and remember to smile more often.

Craig McConnell, President, PrintGrowPro/SalesGrowPro

“Great selling is a process artfully done.”

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“Put Me In Coach, I’m Ready To Sell!”

Posted on August 12, 2018 under Sales Management 101.
“Put Me In Coach. I’m Ready To Sell!”

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I’m aging myself by taking such liberties with the lyrics from Centerfield (the John Fogarty hit from 1985), but let there be no doubt, selling is a contact sport and, sadly, too many people enter the game unprepared and for the wrong reasons.



Owners and Sales Managers, a question:  On a day-in, day-out basis, how productive is your sales force (really)?  How much contact do they really have with your customers, current and potential?




All too often, senior management (across all segments of corporate America) has an inflated, unrealistic opinion of the competency of their sales team – with potentially disastrous long-term results. The perpetuation of sales force mediocrity can be tied to many things (bad hires, no written goals, a lack of accountability, refusal to make the hard decisions), but one thing is certain: for small and mid-sized companies, the risk of allowing your sales team to morph into mediocrity and become the most underutilized resource in your company will create a culture that nurtures underperformance – across all departments.


With pricing continuing to ‘make no sense’ and margins being tougher and tougher to maintain, owners and sales managers are spread so  thin that effective, hands-on sales management is virtually  non-existent.  There is no one with the time to coach, to train, to mentor, and to hold people accountable.


In too many cases, the creation of a true sales career path with consistent coaching is an afterthought or a tool that is provided only to the ‘newbies’ and under performers.

If senior management is not using coaching to support your sales team, you’re preventing them from:

*reaching their potential (personally and professionally)

* creating new solutions to old problems,

*and most importantly, from driving positive corporate change as leaders of your organization.

If you aren’t asking them the hard questions, making them do the things they don’t enjoy, and forcing them to improve the areas where they are weak, you are at risk of falling into the trap of sales mediocrity.


I would proffer that  were you  to put 100  sales men and women in a room (this includes anyone who has any of these following job titles on their business card:  Account Executive, Sales Professional, Sales Rep, Sales Executive, Results Manager, Customer Specialist, Business Development Officer, Sales Engineer, Solutions Analyst, Sales Consultant, Ninja Selling Pro, New Business Development Specialist, etc, etc, etc.), the actual breakdown relative to skill sets would be as follows:

*SALES PROFESSIONALS: only 10% will be true sales professionals i.e. they know how to develop new business, grow revenue with existing clients, and maximize margins (they live to sell vs. just selling to live)

*WANNABEES: 30% will have no business being in sales at all – period.

*SALES/CUSTOMER SERVICE: 35% are ‘place holders’.  They will usually cover their draw, are going to provide excellent service to their existing clients, will follow up on a lead if it’s sent their way, but are way out of their comfort zones when it comes to developing new business.

*DEVELOPMENT TEAM:  the final 25% are solid performers who, with the right motivation, a break or two, and ongoing training will become “PROS”.  They are the future of your company!


Did you ever stop and think about how many hours professional athletes have practiced in their lifetimes.  Ever wonder why Michael Phelps has a coach to help him with his breaststroke? Or why Dirk Nowitski has a jump shot coach? Or Rafael Nadel a back hand coach? It is certainly not because they are under-performers or WANNABEES. It is to support exceptional performance in the quest for constant improvement.

There is a fascinating book that I would encourage everyone to add to their sales library: Outliers, by Malcolm Gladwell (the author of Blink).

Early on Gladwell quotes neurologist Dr. Daniel Levitin: “ten thousand hours of practice is required to achieve the level of mastery associated with being a world class expert – in anything.” “In study after study of composers, basketball players, fiction writers, ice skaters, chess players, composers, concert pianist, master criminals, and what have you, this number comes up again and again.”

Gladwell goes on to give other examples: the Beatles, Bill Gates,Steve Jobs and shares this observation from John Lennon: “it was fascinating, the more we practiced, the better we got.”

How many hours of practice do you think the average printing sales person has committed to his or her craft?  How many hours of coaching have they received?

 Are any of us even close to approaching 10,000 hours?



Do you  know what makes your sales team successful?

Do you have an inventory of their strengths and weaknesses?

Do you have a “custom success profile” of your top producers to use as a barometer for future hires and as a developmental road map for the rest of your team?

Do you know how the SALES PROFESSIONALS on your team actually compare to your WANNABEES (every sales team has some) when it comes to organizational skills, recognition needs, imagination, sensitivity, social need, competitiveness, assertiveness, probing levels, tension, and flexibility?

You should!  The short and long term financial health of your company depends on it!

PS:  In case you don’t recognize the center fielders I’ve pictured (and who I consider the best of the best) , I’ll list the names the next time I post something ‘brilliant’.   As always, thanks for being here.

Craig McConnell, President 


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Managing Your ‘Unmanagable’ Sales Menagerie

Posted on under Sales Management 101.


Managing Your Sales Menagerie

I doubt that there is a sales manager anywhere who has not at one time or another stared out at his ‘audience’ at an early morning sales meeting and said (with apologies to Billy Joel) ‘Man, what am I doing here?”

You get no eye contact (think Southwest Airlines as you try to keep the middle seat empty), body language that is bored and apathetic at best, and in many cases you find yourself trying to have a discussion with a group of people who have suddenly forgotten how to talk.

What are you supposed to do with the reps that expect preferential treatment, never take responsibility, or always find something to whine about?  Or, what about the ones who have lost the ability to think on their own and are quick to blame you for their lack of productivity and have more excuses than Missouri has meth labs?

Remember, you need to treat all your sales people fairly, but you don’t need to treat them all the same.  More importantly, if you have never taken the time to create a ‘sales success profile’ and a ‘talent inventory’ of your team, you are doing yourself and your company a huge disservice.  You need to know what motivates them.  You need to know who needs to take their talents elsewhere.   You need to have a clear understanding of the skill sets and behavioral characteristics that enable your ‘true Hunters’ to consistently develop new business and increase margins.

Every sales team is an amalgam of personalities and styles. I’m going to share with you some of the characters I’ve met over the years; see if you recognize any of them.

Greg the Great

Greg the Great ‘knows’ that you need him more than he needs you.  He’s aggressive, assertive, is a great closer, and doesn’t need a lot of help from you.  He is a ‘pro’ and I would suggest that you be sure to set limits (and enforce them) with Greg, avoid micro-managing him, and then just let him make you look good.

Sunset  Sam

Sunset Sam was Gutenberg’s apprentice and has been in print sales since before color keys.  Sam is very comfortable with his sales volume, his income, and his station in life.  His interest in developing new business is nil.  His interest in new technology and solution selling is non-existent. There’s not a whole lot you can do with Sam, but you’ve got to make sure he is part of the team and you can’t let him become a negative influence. Recognize his long term contributions and encourage him to be the team’s ‘elder statesman.’ Replacing him should be an option (remember, upgrading the level of talent on your sales team should always be a priority), but because of the solid relationships he has developed over the years you might risk losing the business; proceed with caution, but proceed.

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Elizabeth the Excitable

Every meeting and call Elizabeth has is a ‘great’ one.  Her clients and prospects all love her, she isn’t afraid to talk to anyone, she’s enthusiastic and outgoing, and seems to have everything in common with everyone she meets. People love her, but sadly, she can’t close.  Be patient with Elizabeth, challenge her, teach her that the only good meeting is one that results in a second meeting, help her learn how to ask better questions (and become a better listener), give her public accolades when earned, and make sure you review her weekly ‘to do’ list and hold her accountable.


Polly Perfect

Nobody has a cleaner, more organized work space and filing system than Polly, but she uses change and lack of structure as an excuse for going into hibernation.  Polly puts in lots of hours, but she is busy, not productive.  She works hard and is a great long term planner, but flexibility is not in her DNA and new ideas and ways of doing things make her apoplectic.  She cares deeply about others but can find something wrong with almost anything.  If Polly’s on your team she will have to be taught to deal with distractions and be willing to embrace constructive criticism.  She’ll need to be carefully coached and be given an opportunity to earn small success experiences.  Building awareness and self-confidence will be paramount.

Timid Tim

It’s hard for Tim to be enthusiastic and it is next to impossible for him to ask the hard questions (“What if the client tells me ‘no’?”). Tim can find a million reasons not to prospect and is always doing research on the internet.  His desk is immaculate, is a great list maker, gets his billing done quickly, his clients are loyal (he just doesn’t have enough of them), and is quiet (and passive) to a fault.  What’s a sales manager to do?  Start with prioritizing the basics:  prospecting skills, listening skills, presentation skills, questioning skills; then help Tim with his self-talk and self-assertiveness; teach him the basics of the communication pie (physicality, tonality, language), and finally, make sure Tim knows that you see him as a part of your team.


Debbie Downer

“What’s the use?  My pricing just isn’t competitive.”  Debbie likes to talk about the good old days and blames everyone else for her lack of productivity.  Debbie thinks she is a hard worker but shows up late, leaves early, and loves a long lunch.  Debbie is happiest when the customers call her.  Debbie refuses to set goals (written or otherwise), can be a selfish employee, and has a short attention span.  If you commit to Debbie, know that she will require a lot of attention and patience.  You will need to help her focus and the implementation of an accountability program will be a must.



Curious Carl

There aren’t many Carl’s around; he is a rare breed because he knows that constructive curiosity builds opportunities and opportunities build sales.  He prioritizes really understanding the customer.  He knows their business and how they create value for their customers.  He understands the issues they face and the hurdles they will need to overcome.  He is a solution specialist, not someone who puts ink on paper. Curious Carl knows it is all about being interested  –  truly interested  –   in the customer.  Carl’s customers know that he is not just asking questions because some sales trainer told him that was a good thing to do.  Carl’s goal is to uncover things other sales reps would leave untouched.  Carl’s curiosity builds trust and understanding and that builds sales.  Encourage all your sales reps to be like Carl.

Lucy The Lifelong Learner

Lucy is my all-time favorite. Like Carl, she is a rare breed. If you are lucky enough to have people like her on your sales team you need to nurture them and clone them whenever possible.    She has a personal mission statement that demands that she never stop learning.  She knows that whether we are talking about learning more about your company’s products, basic selling skills, industry trends, or just trying to figure out how things work, it is very important to always be increasing your knowledge.  Lucy manages her time in such a way that there is always time to read and to learn.

Let me leave you with this reminder.  It’s my version of Alec Baldwin’s famous sales speech from GlenGarry Glen Ross:  ABC  –  Always Be Coaching

All too often, sales coaching is non-existent; it is merely an afterthought.

Don’t let that happen to your organization.

If you’re not using your coaching to support your sales team, you’re preventing them from reaching their potential both personally and professionally.

Professional athletes have coaches.  Why should Greg the Great, Sunset Sam, Elizabeth the Excitable, Polly Perfect, Timid Tim, Debbie Downer, Curious Carl, or Lucy The Lifelong Learner be any different?


Craig McConnell, President, PrintGrowPro/SalesGrowPro


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Life 101: “Reading Is Access To A Better Way Of Life!”

Posted on July 11, 2018 under Life 101.


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A few weeks ago I shared some observations about the potential value some ‘throw-back’ training:  BOOK REPORTS.

Peer-to-Peer learning is a great way to make sure you don’t allow your sales team to decline into mediocrity.  Mediocrity avoidance mandates that you deploy and implement new management tools that motivate, excite, and challenge your sales team – ‘rookies’ and ‘veterans’ alike.  Adding reading a book and giving a book report to your team’s next ‘to do’ list will do just that.

But on a more day to day, perhaps more practical perspective, does it not amaze you how many people DO NOT READ – period?

When folks tell me they don’t read, I automatically jump to my next question:  “Well, what do you  listen (think AUDIBLE) to?”

When I hear they do neither, I am dumbfounded.

Everyone has their reasons. Some say that they don’t have the time.

To me, that is like saying you don’t have time to breathe or eat.

You are constantly filling your mind. It is your choice to decide what to fill it with.

If you have 3 minutes to read the news or scroll Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram or ESPN, you also have 3 minutes to read.

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Since more than a quarter of all US Adults didn’t read a book last year, yet watch a few hours of TV per day, those 3 minutes can really make a difference.

If you just read three minutes a day, in a year you would have read for 18 hours. For a slow reading speed of 60 words a minute that is over 3 average sized business books per year! Imagine, 3 books, up from ZERO, on only 3-minutes day.

Could be life changing. You can start today.

Everyone can become a better “reader”. No one is “not good at reading (listening)”, some of us just don’t do it enough.

Reading helps in a variety of ways.

Books can be a source of knowledge. All knowledge is better coming from the source. Find the closest point to the source and soak up that knowledge.

Besides knowledge, there are a few other reasons that reading books can be helpful:

Stress reduction.

Less Stress = Less Anxiety

Reading allows you to step outside of your current problem and look into another world, read the mind of someone else. You can get centered and find balance as you read.

Better vocabulary and writing skills.

The better you express yourself, the more influence you have. Read more so you can do more.

You could live longer.

Yale researchers said so. They studied 3,635 people over the age of 50 and found some incredible correlations. People who read books at least 30 minutes per day lived on average 23 months longer. Now that is awesome. It might not be because of the reading, it might be that people who read are naturally more active, or take better care of their bodies, or have better inter-personal relationships. Or, maybe what they read helped them decide to make better decisions. The actual reason doesn’t really matter, if you read books more, you will probably live a bit longer.

Improved memory.

Not sure if this is proven, I just anecdotally know the people who read the most can remember the most. It is the same with me as well, the more I read, the more I remember.

You could become a bit more open-minded.

Reading helps you see things from different perspectives. By being flexible and adaptable and not always needing closure you can formulate ideas that are traditionally not accepted, thus allowing new opportunities to be born.

Deeper situational awareness.

Your life is made up of intersecting situations. When you read you can see how the storylines, plots, and characters all weave together, and you will be able to notice similar patterns in real life. When you can see the big picture, your actions will always be better.


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And if none of these observations or  suggestions* resonate with you, remember the immortal words of P. J. O’Rourke:  “Always read something that will make you look good if you die in the middle of it.”



Craig J. McConnell
SalesGrowPro/PrintGrowPro, Inc.
10902 Big  Canoe
Jasper, GA 30143
1 Seaside Lane
Belleair, FL 33756
*in an effort to be transparent, not all of this is my intellectual property, but has been ‘stolen’ over the years  -  would give credit (where credit is due) but I can’t find the original source.


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Given A Good Book Report Lately?

Posted on June 25, 2018 under Sales Management 101.

Sales Management 101

“Given A Good Book Report Lately?”

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 Almost 60 years ago, at Egypt Lake Elementary School in Tampa, Florida, Mrs. Margaret Arce assigned me my first oral book report.


I remember it like it was yesterday.

I remember the stress and anxiety I felt leading up to the ‘big’ day and my inability to sleep the night before.

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I remember my Dad insisting that I write out my report – word for word – and memorize my presentation.  I must have given my report to my Dad a dozen times (which when I think about it today seems a little over the top; oh well, that’s a story for another day).  Maybe that’s where I was first introduced to the 5 P’s:  PERFECT PRACTICE PREVENTS POOR PERFORMANCE.

I remember my best friends Ronnie Ryals and Drew Castillo making faces at me as they tried to make me laugh.

I remember Mrs. Arce standing in the back of the room encouraging me to stand up straight, look at her if I was nervous, and just do my best.

Book reports are obviously important projects for elementary and middle school language classes.  Why?  Because book reports teach kids how to read, write, and most importantly organize their thoughts and share those thoughts with a group of their peers.



Do you think sales people would benefit from developing and honing those same skills?  Do you think your sales team could benefit from actually doing a book report?  I do, and here a just a couple of reasons why:

  • just like there is a value to making your kids eat their vegetables, there is a value to encouraging  your sales team to read something – anything!  As Confucius said: “no matter how busy you think you are, you must find time for reading or surrender yourself to self chosen ignorance.”


  • Nothing is more difficult than presenting to a group of your peers; regardless of how much experience your sales team has, they can always improve their presentation skills.  They need to remember to smile – people look more trustworthy, confident and friendly when they smile; they should repeat the points they want people to remember and they should talk directly to each person in the room.  PERFECT PRACTICE PREVENTS POOR PERFORMANCE.


  • Last but not least, remember, in everyday life we are continually learning from one another. We all draw on the knowledge, skills, and experiences of our friends and colleagues.   We trust their perspectives. 

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I just finished reading William Manchester’s THE LAST LION about Churchill.  You think those speeches he gave, that some say may have saved the world, were spontaneous – think again.

For the record, a quick update on the last book report I gave (Attention all sales managers:  ‘if you’re going to talk the talk, you have to walk the walk).  Do you happen to know how many times “Sam-I-Am” (Dr. Seuss’ Green Eggs and Ham) asked for the order before he got it?

Peer-to-Peer learning is a great way to make sure you don’t allow your sales team to decline into mediocrity.  Mediocrity avoidance mandates that you deploy and implement new management tools that motivate, excite, and challenge your sales team – ‘rookies’ and ‘veterans’ alike.  Adding reading a book and giving a book report to your team’s next ‘to do’ list will do just that.

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Have a great rest of the week!

Craig McConnell, President, PrintGrowPro/SalesGrowPro

“Great selling is a process artfully done.”


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Posted on May 23, 2018 under Life 101.

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 We all  talk about  the need for ‘personal growth’ and ‘lifelong learning’, but few of us have the discipline to truly ‘change.’  Here are 15 “REALLY EASY” difference makers:

1. If a task if going to take you less than a minute to complete, do it as soon as you think of it.

The One-Minute Rule is simple, but it works! Getting out of the habit of putting things off is the easiest way to get shit done.

2. Read for a set amount of time every single day.

Do you get shocked when people say they do not read books?

I do. Usually, I say: “That’s ok, Audible and Blinkest count too.”

Then, they say they don’t do that either. That is when I don’t know what to say.

Everyone has their reasons. Some say that they don’t have the time.

To me, that is like saying you don’t have time to breathe…

You are constantly filling your mind. It is your choice to decide what to fill it with.

If you have 3 minutes to read the news or scroll Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram or ESPN, you also have 3 minutes to read.

Since more than a quarter of all US Adults didn’t read a book last year, yet watch a few hours of TV per day, those 3 minutes can really make a difference.

If you just read three minutes a day, in a year you would have read for 18 hours. For a slow reading speed of 60 words a minute that is over 3 average sized business books per year! Imagine, 3 books, up from ZERO, on only 3-minutes day.

Could be life changing. You can start today.

3. Actually start flossing your teeth at least once a day.

It will be worth it when you don’t have to lie at your next dentist appointment.

4. Try and go to bed at the same time each night, and wake up at a similar time each morning.

Your body loves habits, especially good sleep habits. Set a go-to-bed alarm, as well as a wake-up alarm, and try and stick to both most days.

5. Make your bed each and every morning.

Coming home to a bedroom with a made bed is a pure delight. Once you’re in the habit of making your bed, you won’t be able to believe you ever left the house without doing it.

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6. Add one new healthy food or ingredient into your diet.

Adding something healthy feels way better than taking something out of your diet, so choose a new vegetable, grain, or spice and work it into your meal rotation.

7. Find a workout you can do comfortably in your own home, and do it regularly.

Even if it’s just a short routine of push-ups, sit-ups, lunges, and squats, you’ll always have something to do on days you can’t be bothered getting to the gym or a class.

8. Instead of putting things down, put them away.

Leaving things where they don’t belong is how homes get messy. Avoid an hour of tidying up by taking a few seconds to put things away as you finish with them.

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9. Each night, plan what you’re going to wear the next day.

One less decision you need to make in the AM.

10. Practice a new skill or hobby for 10 minutes every day.

Whether it’s watercolor painting, embroidery, violin, or learning a new language, dedicating10 minutes a day to it guarantees you’ll have improved by the end of the month.

11. Save every $5 bill that makes its way into your wallet.

A lot of people swear by this simple money-saving trick. Stash away every $5 note you come across, and enjoy your savings at a later date.

12. Write down three things you’re grateful for each night before bed.

Keeping a gratitude list or journal is a lovely practice that helps highlight all the good things you have going on in your life’.

13. Try meditating, starting with just three minutes a day.

The first session on the Calm app is just three minutes long. Start there, and see how you feel after a month of daily meditation.

14. Keep track of how much water you’re drinking, and set daily hydration goals.

15. Call someone when you’re having a bad day, whether that person is a friend, family member, or health professional.

Find your person, then get into the habit of calling them to chat more regularly.

I intend to expand on each of these in future postings, but for now, just pick one  -  and I would suggest #2.

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Craig J. McConnell

“Entering Adulthood II”
Continuing to) Make Sales People Memorable

(striving to) Re-imagine Retirement

1 Seaside Lane #203
Belleair, FL 33756
53 Chula
10902 Big Canoe
Jasper, GA 30143

*KUDOS and thanks to Erin Vasocich @ BUZZFEED for the concept




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Closing The Gate

Posted on April 7, 2017 under Sales Management 101.





Sooner or later, tribes begin to exclude interested but unaffiliated newcomers.

It happens to religious sects, to surfers and to online communities as well. Nascent groups with open arms become mature groups too set in their ways to evangelize and grow their membership, too stuck to engage, change and thrive.

So much easier to turn someone away than it is to patiently engage with them, the way you were welcomed when you were in their shoes.

There are two reasons for this:

  1. It’s tiresome and boring to keep breaking in newbies. Eternal September, the never-ending stream of repetitive questions and mistakes can wear out even the most committed host. Your IT person wasn’t born grouchy–it just happens.
  2. It’s threatening to the existing power structure. New voices want new procedures and fresh leadership.

And so, Wikipedia has transformed itself into a club that’s not particularly interested in welcoming new editors.

And the social club down the street has a membership with an average age of 77.

And companies that used to grow by absorbing talent via acquisitions, cease to do so.

This cycle isn’t inevitable, but it takes ever more effort to overcome our inertia.

Even if it happens gradually, the choice to not fight this inertia is still a choice. And while closing the gate can ensure stability and the status quo (for now), it rarely leads to growth, and ultimately leads to decline.

[Some questions to ponder...]

Do outsiders get the benefit of the doubt?

Do we make it easy for outsiders to become insiders?

Is there a clear and well-lit path to do so?

When we tell someone new, “that not how we do things around here,” do we also encourage them to learn the other way and to try again?

Are we even capable of explaining the status quo, or is the way we do things set merely because we forgot that we could do it better?

Is a day without emotional or organizational growth a good day?



Craig McConnell, President,



“Great selling is a process artfully done.” 

Follow me on Twitter – 



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Seth Godin: Avoiding The Race To The Bottom

Posted on April 5, 2017 under Life 101.

I have always considered Seth Godin to be one of my mentors/heroes/business consulting role-models. Thought you might appreciate the attached. If you’re real busy, jump ahead to the last two paragraphs. Enjoy and cogitate

“If war has an opposite, it’s not peace, it’s civilization. (inspired by Ursula LeGuin writing in 1969)

“Civilization is the foundation of every successful culture. It permits us to live in safety, without being crippled by fear. It’s the willingness to discuss our differences, not to fight over them. Civilization is efficient, in that it permits every member of society to contribute at her highest level of utility. And it’s at the heart of morality, because civilization is based on fairness.

“The civilization of a human encampment, a city or town where people look out for one another and help when help is needed is worth seeking out.

“We’re thrilled by the violent video of the iguana and the snakes, partly because we can’t imagine living a life like that, one where we are always at risk.

“To be always at risk, to live in a society where violence is likely—this undermines our ability to be the people we seek to become.

“Over the last ten generations, we’ve made huge progress in creating an ever more civilized culture. Slavery (still far too prevalent) is now seen as an abomination. Access to information and healthcare is better than it’s ever been. Human culture is far from fully civilized, but as the years go by, we’re getting better at seeing all the ways we have to improve.

“And this can be our goal. Every day, with every action, to make something more civilized. To find more dignity and possibility and opportunity for those around us, those we know and don’t know.

Hence the imperative. Our associations, organizations and interactions must begin with a standard of civility. Our work as individuals and as leaders becomes worthwhile and generous when we add to our foundation of civilization instead of chipping away at it.

“The standard can come from each of us. We can do it. We can speak up. We can decide to care a little more. We can stand up to the boss, the CEO, or the elected representative and say, “wait,” when they cross the line, when they pursue profit at the cost of community, when they throw out the rules in search of a brawl instead. The race to the bottom and the urge to win at all costs aren’t new, but they’re not part of who we are and ought to be.”

Thought Questions

Make it a great rest of the week  always remember YOU DID NOT WAKE UP TODAY TO BE MEDIOCRE!!!

Craig McConnell, President,



“Great selling is a process artfully done.” 

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Career Coach: Here’s how to ace the job interview

Posted on December 6, 2016 under Sales 101.

Whether you are interviewing for the first time or fifth time, here’s things to remember.

Remember, being considerate is good for your mental and physical health, your career, and everyone around you. Be KIND

Image result for words with pictures about kindness

Craig J. McConnell

“Entering Adulthood II”
Continuing to) Make Sales People Memorable

(striving to) Re-imagine Retirement

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