Sales Story #2: Your “Who I’ve Helped and How I’ve Helped Them” Story

Today’s article is the second in a series of the 25 most useful sales stories salespeople should be able to tell. As a reminder, those 25 are the result of my interviews with professional sales and procurement managers at over 50 companies looking for where salespeople are most effectively using storytelling throughout the entire sales [read more]

Ambition, Regret, and College Applications: The Conversation I Wish I’d Had 30 Years Ago

What colleges did you apply to in high school? Did you apply to colleges at all? Do you regret those decisions now? And what would you do differently if you could do it over again? Those are the questions I would have liked to have asked my future middle-aged self when I was a teenager. [read more]

Great leaders help people find passion for their work — even for the most unappealing jobs. Here’s how. . .

Ever heard the advice, “You really need to love your job”? It’s usually offered unsolicited by an overconfident boss who thinks the rank and file will find it inspiring, or somehow turn their drudgery into a rewarding experience. Does it work? Of course not. You can’t order people to love their job. That just gives [read more]

Expert Interview Series with John Mattone

I had the honor of fielding some interview questions from John Mattone recently about business storytelling. We got to talk about: how storytelling addresses common business and leadership challenges examples of a great storytelling leader never heard of the biggest mistakes leaders make when telling business stories. stories to change cultures what makes great stories [read more]

Two Guaranteed Ways to Completely Undermine Your Sales Department

My guest this week is Mike Weinberg. He’s a sales consultant and bestselling author of two absolutely fabulous books, both of which spent a significant amount of time as the #1 selling book on Amazon for Sales and Selling. The first was New Sales. Simplified. And the second is Sales Management. Simplified. which we talked [read more]

The 25-Year-Late Apology

David Hutchens spent his elementary school years in New Orleans, Louisiana. At the age of five, he met a classmate who would become his best friend for most of those elementary years. We’ll call him Pete. David and Pete spent much of their time together as best friends will do. Until fifth grade, that is. [read more]

Answer to Narrative #2 (Hewlett Packard Tipping Point)

Let’s review the criteria: There is a time (two years ago), a place (University of Leeds), a main character (Dave Neild), an obstacle (cease and desist orders), a goal (stopping the orders), and events (students sharing files and the university running the TippingPoint test). This has all the indicators of a story. Click here to [read more]

Answer to Narrative #3 (toothbrushes on the Oral Care aisle)

This one is tricky. It’s exactly the kind of narrative professional salespeople use all the time, and they might easily refer to it as a story. But let’s look at the criteria. There are time references to February and Christmas, but most of the text doesn’t involve those times. There is no place mentioned. It’s [read more]

Answer to Narrative #1 (Ultra-White Teeth Whitening)

Let’s walk through all six criteria: There is no time and no place mentioned. There’s also not a clear main character, although “you” is mentioned several times. There does appear to be a main obstacle (yellow teeth and the discomfort of most teeth whitening systems). And there is clearly a goal (whiter teeth). Finally, and most [read more]

A Leadership Guide to Lying

I once hired a consultant, and the first thing out of his mouth was a lie. Seriously. I brought him in to lead a 3-day long-term strategy session for my business unit. When he kicked off the first day of meetings, he introduced himself and started into a story about an experience he had at the [read more]