5 Ways to build Trust, Credibility, and Respect for yourself

Tomorrow I will be doing a presentation to a group of Young Professionals.  I will be speaking around the topic of Leadership; How to build Trust, Credibility and Respect.

Obviously an interesting topic for this group of people.  Most of the folks that will be in attendance fall into a few different categories in the workforce. They are either starting out their careers.  They could already be in their second career. Most likely most of them, if not all of them, will be looking for an edge to continue to grow in their current role and in their organization.

I will allow them to come up with their own playbook of what they think it takes for them to build their leadership skills to be trusted, and have the respect and be credible to those in higher positions in their company or in their communities.  As they decide for themselves what they think it takes. I will share my thoughts as well.

Here are five things they can do, and you can do to: To become a trusted, credible, and well-respected leader in your organization or in your community.

  1. Invest in yourself: There is no better way to become known as a person who knows what they are talking about than actually becoming that person that knows what they are talking about.  The best way to do this, is to first become an expert in your business or the work you do.  Sign up for any trade magazines in your industry, email lists, newsletters, etc.  Whatever you can get your hands on, do it.  In addition, to getting your hands on that information you need to attend seminars or conferences in your business.  If your company will pay for it. Great. If not.  Pay for it yourself.  Become known as the person who is willing to do whatever it takes to become an expert in your business.
  2. Develop your foundational skills: Yes I said foundational.  Most people call them soft skills.  However, I call them foundational, because if you don’t have a strong foundation built it is hard to put or build anything on top of it.  You have to become a better speaker, communicator, connector with others, small talker, influencer, etc. There are  two ways to develop these skills.   First, you can attend courses to learn how to do this more effectively.  Like a Dale Carnegie Course or Toastmasters. Secondly, you have to practice a lot.  You have to go out of your way to attend networking events, find ways to speak in public, and just go out of your way to always be connecting and communicating with others.  The more you do this, the better you will become, which in turn allows you to become more known and more credible.
  3. Brand You: The first two items on the list, obviously help build you up amongst your peers and colleagues.  However, if you are working really hard to build yourself up, but meanwhile you are doing things that can pull you down. It isn’t going to help you become more respected and trusted.  Here are a couple of things to not do. Don’t be negative.  You know who those people are.  You try to avoid them don’t you?  They are the ones that are on Facebook or on your lunch breaks, complaining about everything. You don’t want to be known as that person.  Secondly, don’t feed in to the gossip.  When someone starts the gossip, exclude yourself immediately from the talk. Avoiding the negative talk and avoiding the gossip scene will help separate you from the pack and let people know that you are trustworthy.
  4. Listen and think before you speak: You could easily put these into the foundational category above.  However, I believe it needs its own space here at number four.  First of all, most people are not very good listeners.  People respect people who will listen to them.  We want someone to sincerely listen to us. Secondly, if we become good listeners, we will have the correct and accurate information before we start speaking.  How many times have you heard the old saying “Foot in my mouth” cliché.  Too many to count most likely.  And the reason people have to say it so often, is that they didn’t do enough listening on the front end to learn what they should or shouldn’t say.
  5. Speed, Accuracy, Consistency: I am still waiting for a returned phone call from a Realtor from two weeks ago.  How much credibility do you think that person has with me right now?  You got it.  Zero.  I believe you must become known as a person who does things quickly.  Lets face it.  We now live in a world where I can have pretty much anything I want within a few hours, at the longest, a couple of days.  We are all conditioned, and getting more conditioned every day, to have less patience than we used to.  If you want to become more respected and credible, become known as the person who gets things done quickly. I know when we speed things up, the chances of accuracy and consistency can be affected.  But you can’t allow that to happen.  You have to deliver everything with speed.  It must be accurate, and you must be able to do it consistently.  Period.  Look at Amazon.  They do all three.  Become known as the Amazon to everyone you know.

These are five simple things you can do to become that respected, credible, and trusted person at your office, within your organization, within your community, etc.

To your success and your future.




The missing link between training programs and performance change


I recently conducted a training session for the Association for Talent Development.  I discussed the missing link and followed up that training session with the article below.   

Training is supposed to change performance by changing behaviors.  So often this is just not the case. In this program, we discussed the missing link between training programs and achieving the performance change our training is designed to enhance.

The three key areas we focused on during this session:

  • Learn the Cycle of Performance Change
  • Discuss how to get better performance through changed behaviors.
  • Identified three ways to get participants engaged in training.

Cycle of Performance Change: 

Most training programs fail to actually state what the real objective of the training is.  In developing a training program, it is critical to actually state the key objectives of what it is the participant (learner), will actually learn and should be able to do at the end of the training.  This allows the participant to know what they are getting, and what they should expect.  By doing this it also allows for the participant to state what their objectives of attending the training are as well.  None of this happens in silence.  All of this should be discussed in advance of the training and throughout the training.

Once we have identified the goals and objectives, we can now move to what we call attitude.  With attitude, it is pretty simple.  Does the participant see the need to make a change?  If yes.  Move forward.  If no.  Then find out why.

If they see the need.  We now have to determine; do they Want to?  If yes. Move forward.  If no.  We need to find out why.  Then we have to assess skills and determine if they can make the necessary change. And secondly, does the participant believe they can make the necessary change.

Lastly, we have to assess whether or not the participant will make the changes.  This is not only for trainers to determine, but the participant must determine this for themselves as well.

Attitude comes down to this:  Do they see a need, Do we see a need?  Do they want to, Do we want them to?  Do they think they can? Do we think they can?  Lastly, Will they do it, Will we follow up to make sure they do it.

After we have determined our goals, assessed the participants attitudes toward training and changing their performance.  We can now impart new knowledge to the participants.  This new knowledge is techniques, information, processes, etc. that can enhance their skills when used.

There is no point to provide training to someone who doesn’t have the right attitude to take the training and actually use it to get better results.

Now that we have equipped them with the new information, we now have to get them practicing the new concepts, processes, and techniques.  Once they start practicing the new techniques they can then start to become more comfortable with it.  When practiced enough, they will turn those new skills into a permanent way in which they conduct business.

So, the new skill becomes a changed behavior in how they conduct business.

Three ways we can get participants engaged in the training. 

Before, During, and after.  These are the three areas most critical to success for a training program.  Training is not something you just go to.  Training is an ongoing requirement for everyone, especially for those who are seeking to get better results.

Before the training:  We sit down with participants and get their buy-in on the training and why they think it is important for them to attend the training. As pointed out above, we also let them know what the objectives of the training are and we get their objectives for the training as well.

During:  There are many ways we can get participants engaged in the training while we are actually delivering the training.  Here are just a few.

We facilitate versus lecture.  I think everyone knows this.  However, it is still happening.  Adult learners learn best by doing. The best way for us to teach is to get them practicing sooner than later.  The process I use, is simple.

  • Introduce the concept
  • Give an example of the concept being used.
  • Have the participant practice the concept using their examples.
  • Give some coaching to the participant while they are practicing.
  • Summarize how it worked and when and how they will apply it.

Another way to facilitate is by having the participants works in pairs, triads, groups, and then the entire group as a whole.  In each of the different pairings they have the ability to learn from each other.  As a pair, they may be more willing to be honest.  In triad, they have an extra person holding them accountable and giving them feedback.  In groups, they get the benefit of seeing what others learned by applying the concept.  Mixing these pairings and groupings up create a more engaged participant.

After the training.  This is one of the most critical pieces of an effective training program that is often overlooked.  After the training, you can do some assessments to determine what was remembered.  You can also assess the program to see if the expectations were clear.  But what is most important, is following up with the participants to ensure they are using the new concepts discussed. It is hard to change a behavior.

If you have a veteran employee, this step is even more crucial, as it will be easy for them to fall back in to the old ways of doing things.  While a newer employee, might be more open to the changes if they haven’t had anything specific they were using.

When we use the Cycle of Performance Change correctly we can change the behaviors of people, which in turn makes our training programs more effective.   Getting participants involved in the training from the very start, through the end, gets their buy-in to the training and creates an atmosphere of wanting to learn versus having to learn. It is also makes the training experience more enjoyable when they get to practice the newly learned concepts.

There is no perfect way to ensure all training leads to an actual changed performance.  The key is to be creative, keep it simple, use lots of examples, and lastly, get them involved in the training and practicing the material.


5 Reasons you shouldn’t take advice from most people

Lets face it.  If you have lived on this earth for very long at all, by the time you are reading this post.  The chances are, you at least somewhat agree with the title.   If not, maybe you will be thoroughly convinced by the end of reading this post.

Most people don’t have a clue:   Yes, I do believe this is true in most cases.  I am not saying nobody knows, or everyone is clueless.  No, I am saying “most” people don’t have a clue.

Ex:  You could probably ask the five closest people you are around right now this question:  “Do you consider yourself a Facebook expert”?  The chances are they will respond with a yes.  Most people think they are experts because they use something frequently.  That doesn’t make them an expert.  If they are telling you to be sure you advertise on Facebook. Are you going to take their advice, or someone who really knows? Meaning, the small percentage of people and experts who actually understand marketing and Facebook advertising.  Not your buddy, who thinks they know what they are talking about just because they use it.

People give you the advice that they are comfortable with themselves:   Maybe you are thinking of a new career.  Or a new job opportunity.  The position or the new career sounds really awesome.  You are qualified for it, you like the people you will be working with.  You really think this is the right move. Keep in mind, you really like your current job as well, but you are slowly getting bored with it. You just don’t feel challenged anymore.

So you ask your buddy. Who has done the same job for the last ten years, and really hasn’t done anything to grow their skills in any other areas, so they most likely plan on staying where they are.  You tell them about this new opportunity and tell them you are thinking about leaving your current position. What advice do you think this buddy of yours is going to give you?

It’s not a bad thing that your buddy has a long-term employment record with a company.  However, it does show that they prefer stability and consistency.  Which is perfectly okay to like.

However, they might not be as risky as you are.  Or as anxious for a new opportunity as you are.  So they might not give you the advice that someone else who may have switched careers every five years to pursue new opportunities would give you. Their suggestions or feedback on the possible change might be “stay where you are”.  “You are just getting started”. Or something along those lines.  This is the advice that they have given themselves.  This is the advice that they are comfortable with and that is the advice they will give you.

They haven’t been where you are going:  We all have done this.  Shit, I sometimes still do it.  You would think I would know better by now.

Have you ever thought about doing something that sounded a little different from what everyone in your circle is doing? Maybe you are thinking of starting your own business.  Or maybe it is some product you have thought about creating.  Maybe it is taking a trip to a place that people like you don’t take trips to normally.  Or, it could be just changing the way you interact with people at work, or how you do your work.

Regardless of what it is.  The chances are you have at some point decided to go against the norm.  Well, the norm that is in your circles.

So, you do like most of us do and run it past a few of your closest friends.  And they can’t wrap their brains around what you are saying.  They have never thought like that, which means they can’t fathom doing what you are thinking about doing. They tell you the risks. All of the bad things that could happen.  And in many cases you would think they are an expert on what ever it is you are thinking about doing.

Lets be honest.  They are not experts.  Matter of fact, they are the furthest thing from it.  They can’t even fathom what you are doing, much less add any value to what it is you are attempting to do.

Most people are showing you a facade. What is a facade? an outward appearance that is maintained to conceal a less pleasant or creditable reality.

You know some of these people.  You have seen glimpses of them from time to time.  They are all around you.  That person that has the really nice new cars, nice new house, nice new clothes, etc.  Whatever it is.  They are showing you the appearance that they have it all going for them.  Mean while.  They are about to lose their house, their marriage, and their nice new cars, because they can’t afford the lifestyle.

In today’s world, this facade could be on Facebook or some other kind of digital platform. Again, you are looking at the high light reels of someones life and you think they are the right person to seek advice from.  They are not.

The most obvious one: Have you ever made a decision to live a healthier lifestyle?  You know what this includes.  Bringing your lunch to work.  Your lunch bag or box filled with vegetables, carrots, humus, or the leftovers from some healthy meal you cooked the night before. In addition to the change in eating habits, you have also started exercising a lot more.  You talk about the workout you did at your local gym, or some running program, or some other kind of home workout program.

Whenever you do this.  You inevitability will always get a person that is in your circles that is the expert on everything you are doing.  They know the best workouts.  The best foods to eat. And everything else “health”, you can think of.  However, you have never once heard them talk about this stuff before.  They also use words like “used to” a lot.  Which means they are trying to tell you something about something that they are currently not doing themselves.

Or it could be the real obvious ones.  The person who doesn’t have the shape, size, or physique you would ever want.  Trying to tell you what you should do.  Or the person who never seems to have any money, telling you what you should do with yours.

In all of the cases I mentioned above we have all been around similar scenarios. I am not saying you shouldn’t seek advice from people.  I am actually telling you the opposite of that.

I am suggesting that you be careful in who you seek your advice from. For most of our lives we have been listening to the people around us. In many cases, this is a good thing.

However, when you get dissatisfied with the results you are getting in your life. Or you are inspired to make a change.  You can’t seek guidance or advice from the people in your life that don’t know or understand what you are going through, much less give you any good advice on how to make it happen.

To your success and your future.


One of the best decisions I’ve ever made

A few years ago, I made the decision to make a career transition.  Now if you are reading this and are like most people, including me.  This can be a scary proposition.  Let me tell you, it doesn’t happen over night. However, once you make a decision and have thoroughly mapped it out, including deadlines, then it is up to you to make it happen.

The first leg of this career transition started four years ago. This first leg required me to spend a lot of time doing free shit.  I am just going to call it what it is.  The free stuff I did required me to spend my time and my money, because time is money. Doing stuff that I didn’t get paid to do.  I did that for about a year, before I was then allowed to get paid for what I was doing.

Lesson #1: Be willing to do some free stuff for a while until you get good enough to actually get paid for it.

Keep in mind, I had been doing the same thing for the same company for about twelve years. The first first two years of the career transition I spent a lot of my free time trying to learn the new skill that I was trying to develop.   This required nights and weekends and it also required me to do things that were really uncomfortable.

Lesson #2: If you really want to get out of your comfort zone, do something you have never done before. Get comfortable with being uncomfortable.

Now I am up to the third year in that career transition.  This was the year of really getting myself way out of my comfort zone. The first two years was really all preparation.  In this third year, I was now implementing what I learned, getting paid for it, but again, knowing in the back of my mind that this was all preparation for something that was to come still.

Lesson #3: If you truly are looking for a new result, you are going to have to do something totally different.

This fourth year, I made the decision to pull the band-aid off.  I made the jump over into this new position, this new career.  The career transition was finished, but really it was just beginning. I am now doing what I wanted to do full-time at this time.  I was no longer doing anything on the side of my full-time job.  This new career was now my full-time job.

In this fourth year, I learned a lot that I didn’t really know about this new career.  It was more than just a learning experience, it was a total game changer on so many levels. I was out of my comfort zone hourly.  I was learning now at a much faster pace, and it was fun and scary at the same time.

I am now at year five from that decision; year two, full-time in this new career and I am learning more now than I did in my first year.

Let me ask you, what have you been thinking about doing for a long time.  Or let me ask it another way.  How long have you hated what you are currently doing?  Or how long have you been tolerating what you are currently doing?  Because of the money?  Or because you don’t know what the next step is?

Hey, I am only five years removed from one of the best decisions I ever made. And like you, I had a lot of money on the line.  A lot of my ego and pride associated with what I had always done.  None of that matters though.

What matters most is being excited about what you are doing. Working for something bigger and I would go as far as saying for me; working for myself.

You are just one decision from making one of your best decisions. Will you do it?  And see it through?

To your success and your future.

Three truths you need, but you don’t want…

On a daily basis it is my job to give others, feedback in areas of their life and their career.  Most of the feedback I provide is not harsh, but it is usually met with some resistance.  Now I know it is important to give the good feedback with the bad. However, most leaders/coaches are either good at one or the other.  Most leaders are either good at telling people how great they are.  Which means the person thinks they are good at everything.  Or you have leaders that all they do is point out the faults or shortcomings of the people they lead.  There has to be a balance.  You have to do both.

In my business, I spend most of my time giving truthful feedback in these three areas.

  1. You are capable of more: I understand you are busy.  You have a lot to do.  Everyone does.  The question I have for you though is,  “Are you efficient with what you have to do?” And secondly, how much of what you are doing, should you actually be doing. I don’t know you or your business.  However, if I were to guess, the chances are you, especially if you are a leader in an organization, are currently doing a task, or job, that you should have someone else doing.   Thats first.  Look at all the things you are doing and ask yourself.  Is this what I get paid to do?  Or am I focusing on things that I should be delegating to others?

    The second reason you are capable of more. You are not maximizing your full potential. Sorry, you are not.  Humans are the only species on earth that can decide to slow up and coast.  The chances are you are doing the same job you have always done. Maybe in a bigger company with different challenges, but it is the same thing you have always done.  It is not stretching you and getting you outside your comfort zone causing you to develop new skills. The goal here is to develop new skills.

    Most of us get to a satisfactory and acceptable level of performance in whatever it is we do, and we just stay there.  But you don’t have to.  You can become more than you are today by learning and doing more than you are currently doing. You have the capacity.

  2. You are not as good as you think you are: The chances are you have never been given the feedback you need to get you to change who you are.  Like I mentioned earlier, most leaders don’t give the critical feedback that is necessary to get you to grow.  So, instead you go through your daily life in business and even personally, thinking you are great at…. whatever it is. And the reality is, you are not that great.  I am sure you are a great person, all of us are, or at least we want to be.  We just aren’t aware of our own shortcomings until someone points them out.
  3. You can change:  As you already know some people just aren’t willing to change.  They honestly believe that they are either on the right path for success and they can continue down this path.  Or they just don’t see the need to change.  Here are the four questions I ask to determine if a person can change.  If they can answer yes to the first two questions, then there is hope.  If they don’t answer yes, it is going to be a struggle.

    Need:  Does the person see a need or have a need to make changes?
    Want: Do they want to make a change?
    Can: Do they believe they can change?
    Will: Will they do what is necessary to make changes?

The chances are if you have made it to the bottom here and are still reading this blog.  It tells me that you realize that you are capable of so much more.  You agree that you aren’t as good as you can be. And you know you can change and are willing to do whatever it takes to make a change.

Now the question is, “What are you going to do about it?”  Dale Carnegie Training is the original Thought Leader in the Training and Development space.  For over 104 years, we have focused on changing behaviors that are holding people back from having more self-confidence in themselves. Changing behaviors to enhance their ability to have stronger and deeper relationships with people. We have also equipped people with the processes to communicate more effectively that has allowed them to have great impact and influence with everyone around them.

If you have a need or see a need in any of the above three areas and know that right now is the time for you to make a change. Connect with me by responding to this post wherever you read it.  Or reach out to me directly at brian.willett@dalecarnegie.com

To your success and your future.

5 Reasons you aren’t as successful as you want to be

It is what it is.  I am sitting here after my third or fourth rejection of the day.  And that is okay, because I am in sales, and when you are sales, you get rejected a lot.

I am not equipped at this point in my life and my career to tell you how to make a million dollars, because I haven’t been able to do that myself.  If you add up my income over the last few years, I easily would have had a million dollars come through my hands, however, I am not consistently making a million dollars.

Here is what I am equipped to tell you about though, because I have done it. I have successfully made $175,000 dollars a year for several years.  Now, maybe that is not enough for you.  Maybe, you want to go with the 10X theory, which means you should take all of your goals and multiply them by ten.  All of that is good stuff. However, if you haven’t made $100,000 dollars a year, why would anybody think they could go from five figures to seven figures without a few steps along the way.

I could easily get in to the steps I used to create a $175,000 a year in revenue generation for myself.  But I will save that for another day.  I instead want to talk about what I set out to discuss in this post. That is, why you aren’t as successful as you want to be.  My goal was to make $175,000 a year at one time, and it was important for me to determine that number.  However, what was more important than that number, was what I had to do to ensure I hit that number.  And that is what this blog is about.

As I stated at the beginning of the blog.  I literally have been rejected three or four times, maybe more, since the morning started.  I am not upset with the rejection.  No, I am more upset with the fact that the people who rejected me told me that they were actually interested in improving their life, because they told me so. Or the lives of the people they either support or manage within their company.

Let me take a little personal ownership here.  I am quite confident I could have done something differently in the initial sales process that could have made the outcome different at this point.  Meaning I would not have been told no this many times already today.

However, I know that the sales process has just begun and I will eventually change my initial errors into wins and I will eventually make the sale.  I know this because, I deliver with excellence and give more value to people than they actually pay for.  So I may have lost the battle, but I will win the war.  I digress.

Why is it that people say they are interested in making a change that could impact their life?  They have the opportunity right in front of them.  They agree, that it could change their life, but for whatever reason they fail to take the next steps? Thus they don’t create the success they want?

Here are my five reasons we aren’t successful as we want to be:

We lack commitment: You aren’t fully committed to what it is. Be honest with yourself here.  Have you ever done one of the following:

  • Purchased the book, but you didn’t read it
  • Bought the workout program, but never used it.
  • Bought the fitness equipment, and then used to hang your clothes on.
  • Went to the seminar, took the notes, but never followed up on them.
  • Requested more information. Got it. And then did nothing with it.
  • Downloaded the app. Put it on your last screen on your phone. Or deleted it totally.
  • Went to the website, but never made the call.
  • Cleaned out the kitchen to make way for the healthy stuff, it stayed that way for a month before it went back the old way.
  • Created a savings account, put the required money in it, and that is all the money you ever saved.
  • Took the job. Kept your resume out and your phone line open to other positions.

All of the examples above are what I call half-commitments. Or you were committed for about an hour.  Then the desire wore off, or the change was just too hard, and you weren’t committed to the goal you thought you were committed to.

Commitment means that you are all in on whatever it is you are looking to achieve.  Meaning you will spend whatever the amount is that needs to be spent.  You will make the time for however much time is necessary. You will make the sacrifices that will be required to make to get where you want to go.  Until you are ready to do these things, your aren’t ready and your aren’t fully committed.  I was committed to the $175,000 a year and that is why I was able to achieve it.

We don’t take action:   My mentor said it this way.  He called it the Law Of Diminishing Intent. Which meant the “The longer you wait to do something you should do now, the greater the odds that you will never actually do it.”  He also said that when the desire is the strongest, is the best time to take action.

For every second that goes by that we don’t take action on something that we like, and know that it could be beneficial to us, our desire to take action will lessen and lessen until we are no longer excited about the possibility anymore.  The key is to take action as quickly as possible. When you buy the book take action and start reading it now. When you buy the fitness equipment, make a plan to use it. When you download the app, start using it this second. When you download the budgeting document, put your budget in it now. When you decide to workout, start today.  When you attend the seminar and the information is great and you see how it could benefit you, pay for it today. Lock yourself in that commitment.

I believe sometimes for us to get the change we truly want, we have to trick ourselves into thinking we have no way out.  If I put all of my money in a savings account that I can access, but it is more difficult to get. If I want to save more money, I just put it in there. The trick is that it is more difficult to get out.  And sometimes that little bit of difficultness will, and has kept me from withdrawing the money, which means I saved more. Some other ways I have tricked myself is around eating less, getting up earlier and getting things done faster.  If you are interested in learning more about that, hit me up at bwillett555@gmail.com and I can share that with you.

Create a plan for your success:   The old saying is true and has been validated for over 6,000 years. If you want a different result, but you keep doing the same things, you are insane. That is as eloquent as I can put it.

The plan is important part of the equation here.  You have to be committed and you have to take action.  These are crucial, especially at the beginning. As you get further into this new way of life, the plan or the process becomes increasingly as important.

There are all kinds of programs out there around managing food portions so you only eat the right amount of food and don’t over eat. There are budgeting programs out there for managing your finances. There are development programs on how to become a better sales person.  If you are seeking to have success in anything in life, the chances are there is a program, or a plan out there that you can find.  And my advice is to look at them all. Over the years I have looked at different plans in all facets of my life when it comes to health and fitness, money, career development, dating, creating a business, etc. What I have found is that when I look at several different programs and plans, I can usually pull pieces from them all that I like, and I create my own plan.

The main thing to remember though is this.  We all are much better and more successful when we have a plan or a process that we can follow that is easy to do.  It can’t be too difficult, it is has to fit us, meaning we can and will do it as long as we are committed and taking action.

We think we got it all:  I was a business major in college.  Because of the system my school was on, I had to take three accounting courses at the undergraduate level to get my degree. Accounting 101, 102, and 103.  I can remember taking these three courses and saying to myself.  “I know everything there is to know about accounting.”  I obviously realize now, and even then, that this wasn’t the case, I didn’t know it all. Because there were several other accounting courses accounting majors had to take to learn about accounting.

At that time, I thought I knew enough to be able to go out and start doing accounting.  I felt like I had enough information that I could start doing accounting and be successful at it and I would learn more as I started doing it.

All of this to say.  Most of us download the information, go to the website and look around, read the table of contents of the book, watch the YouTube video, and think we have all the information or knowledge we need about a particular subject.   If you take and google search the title of this blog, you will find 45 million responses around this topic.  It is obviously an important topic that everyone talks about.

However, with as much information we all have access to, via internet, YouTube, groups, etc., still a majority of the population are looking for the answer, “to what it takes to be successful.”  I am one of those people.

And what I have found is no matter how much I study success, no matter how much success I have through experience, no matter how many books I read, people I listen to around this topic. I still don’t have all of the information, because it is an ongoing pursuit to find success and what it takes to be successful.

The four ideas I suggest here are a good start, but even if you do the first four well, if you don’t have the fifth you will never get the success you want.

Someone holding you accountable:  You made the commitment, you took immediate action, you found and created a process that you can consistently do and you have some good information about the topic.  Now who is going to make sure you do it?

You don’t like the word accountable.  You say you do, but you really don’t.  If you did, you would ask for feedback more often, you would seek out discomfort, you would do something different, and you would fulfill all of your commitments and achieve success in everything you pursue.

I’ll use myself as an example here.  I am committed to working out.  I have no problems taking action, I do it everyday.  I have a plan and a process that works for me. I have made a pretty good effort to go out and get information to help me live a healthy lifestyle that includes both working out as well as eating well. Where do I lose and fall short?  In accountability and growth potential?

From time to time I will visit a gym or workout with someone who is into fitness at a higher level than me. Lets start with visiting a gym.

I have visited several gyms over the last few years.  When I have visited the gyms, I have taken no less than five-ten takeaways from the gyms and the people in the gym, on how to get a better workout.  They pushed me outside my comfort zone.  I use the techniques and the information and implement them in my own workout routines.  Secondly, when I workout with someone with a higher level of fitness than me. Again, these people push me and challenge me in my workout that I don’t get on my own.

My point with all of this is this:  Even though I am committed at all four of the ideas around being more successful at health and fitness, and I am pretty damn good at the first four, but I don’t utilize the fifth idea of someone holding me accountable and pushing me. I have not met all of my goals in the area of health and fitness because I have yet to invest enough money and time in the last and most important idea, which is having someone hold me accountable to my goals in the area of health and fitness.

In the area of health and fitness, I have fallen into the same idea that many of you have as well.  “I am good here.”  Which means I have met a level of performance that I am satisfied with. This is why we aren’t as successful as we want to be.  Because we all in some areas of our life have determined mentally, and in our actions, that we are satisfied with where we are today.

Which means we have quit making new commitments. We take enough action to keep us where we are. We like and know our current processes help keep us where we are, so we refuse to change them.  We are open to new information, but we don’t do anything with it.  And we havent invested time or money into any kind of accountability tool or an individual that could hold us accountable, because we are satisfied and we don’t want that level of accountability.

Let me ask you this.  Why aren’t you as successful as you want to be in…?  Whatever that is.

Which of the five ideas above are you lacking in?  And what are you going to do about it?

To your success and your future.

Brian Willett is a published author, trainer, speaker. Brian seeks to provide information and knowledge to others that can help them achieve the success they want in their life. Brian works with companies and individuals to create sustained changed behaviors that lead to sustained and changed performance results. If you are interested in learning more check out brianwillettgroup.com or email him at bwillett555@gmail.com



Why you need both of these for success

I know many of us are in search for happiness and success.  The question is how do you get both.  There is a quote that sums it up best by one of my favorite authors Dale Carnegie:  “Success is getting what you want. Happiness is wanting what you get.”  So how do we get what we want and like what we get?

We all must learn two things:  Self-Discipline and Self-Control.  If you are like me, I have used these two terms interchangeably for all of my life.  I have recently studied the difference between the two, thanks to my new mentor Marshall Goldsmith.

Mr. Goldsmith says it this way in his book Triggers: “Creating behavior that lasts; Becoming the person you want to be.” Click on this link to purchase: http://www.amazon.com/Triggers-Creating-Behavior-Lasts–Becoming-Person/dp/0804141231/

Self-discipline: Achieving desirable behavior.  When we are disciplined we do what it takes to be successful and happy.  We commit to things that will allow us to have both.  Things such as working out everyday, making time for friends, making sure we leave the office at a certain time everyday, etc.  These are tasks that we commit to repeating over and over.  We are displaying discipline.

Self-control: Avoiding undesirable behaviors.  This is when we deny ourselves of things we enjoy.  Such things could be drinking alcohol, eating dessert, speaking up when we should be quiet, making a comment that doesn’t add value.

Typically we are good at one or the other.  We have a bias to one or the other.  I can speak for myself.

I am a very disciplined person when it comes to working out.  I just get up and do it.  I very seldom miss more than a day at best, that is even if I do miss a day.  As I am typing out this blog, I am thinking about other areas of my life that I am very disciplined in.  Things such as writing, reading, eating breakfast, etc.

Now on the flip side, I am thinking of areas where I may lack self-control.  Without being too transparent here, but there are times where I may have one to many drinks.  I may eat dessert, I may spend more than I should on a particular item, or over a long weekend.

So without a doubt I can say for me that I have a stronger preference to self-discipline  than I do to self-control.

Now that I know this, what can I do to work on my self-control weakness.  I say weakness in comparison to my stronger preference to self-discipline.

To work on this I am going to start holding myself more accountable to areas where I lack self-control. I am going to create some environmental changes and accountability metrics that force me to have more self-control in the areas where I tend to not have self-control.

In Marshall’s book he provides a lot of resources to assist us in this process.  In two weeks, I will become a certified coach in these processes. I look forward to possibly working with you if you desire.  We can pursue these endeavors together.

Which one do you have a bias towards, self-discipline or self-control?  How can you focus some efforts to develop the weaker one of the two?

To your success and your future.


The Seven Levels of Communication book notes

The Seven Levels of communication tells a store of a Real Estate agent named Rick Masters, who is suffering from a down economy when he meets a mortgage professional who has built a successful business without advertising or personal promotion.  Skeptical Masters agrees to accompany her to a conference to learn more about her mysterious methods.  Masters soon learns the that the rewards for implementing these strategies are far greater than he have ever imagined.  In seeking success, he finds significance. This book is a both building a business that not only feeds your family, but also feeds your soul.

The author Michael J. Maher is North America’s most referred Real Estate Professional and founder of the Generosity Generation, he is dedicated to helping sales people earn a better living.  He rocketed to the top of the profession by earning 1 million dollars in his third year of full-time real estate.

This book tells the story and gives you insight and nuggets along the way.  These are my highlighted notes from the book.

  • Don’t wait for a life changing event to change your life.
  • When written in Chinese the word crisis is composed of two characters–one represents danger and the other represents opportunity–John F. Kennedy.
  • Generosity Generation:  Give more than you get.
  • If your buyers aren’t buying and your sellers aren’t motivated to sell, perhaps it is your sense of urgency that is lacking and not theirs.
  • The National Association of Realtors estimates that the average person moves one out of every five years. So that means one fifth or twenty percent of your database moves every year, which would be 30 people if you have a base of 150 people in your database.
  • Write hand written notes to everyone for everything.
  • If you are a realtor, when you sell someone a new house.  Throw a house-warming party for them.  It’s a great opportunity for you to get in front of more people.
  • L.I.F.E:  Learn, Implement, Fail, Evaluate.

7 levels of communication:

  • 1 on 1 meetings (this is the top of the pyramid) (influential zone)
  • Events and Seminars (influential zone)
  • Phone calls (influential zone)
  • Handwritten notes (influential zone)
  • Electronic Communication (informational zone)
  • Direct Mail (informational zone)
  • Advertising. (informational zone)
  • When your why is strong enough, the how takes care of itself.
  • To get fifty referrals you will have to give out 100 referrals.
  • Write your blessings down every morning.
  • F.R.O.G: Use this acronym to carry on a conversation.  Ask about a person’s Family, Recreation, Occupation, and Goals.
  • Be strategic in your meeting times.  Stack them together and make sure each person meets the other person. EX:  Schedule an 11:30 am, 1 pm, and a 2 pm.  Be sure your 1 pm meets your 11:30 am meeting.  Your 2 pm meeting meets your 1 pm.  This is called the networking STACK.
  • The DISC profile is an assessment that determines a persons behavioral styles.  Everybody has some of each, but one of them is typically more dominant than others. The four behavioral styles spell the acronym DISC.
  • D stands for dominance. D’s are straight to the point.  They tend to be driven, fast paced, impatient, efficient and brutally honest. They aren’t into long explanations–they want the bottom line.
  • I stands for Influence and I’s love socializing.  They are often outgoing, friendly, emotional, and energetic.  They;re the life of the party.
  • S stands for Steadiness.  An S is steady and dependable.  S’s nurture.  They live to serve and please.
  • C is for Compliance. C’s are perfectionists who expect everyone to comply with the rules. They crave order and process.
  • The DISCovery:  Care like everyone’s an S., Smile like everyone’s an I, Prepare like everyone’s a C, and sell like everyone’s a D.
  • End all meetings with people, especially when networking.  With these two questions:  How can I help you and what can I do for you.
  • If you are a sales person and you are hesitating to call, it’s because you’re thinking about yourself.  If you’re thinking about helping the people you’re calling and fouling on their needs, its easy to pick up the phone. 
  • The person who talks the most dominates the conversation, but the person who asks the most questions control the conversation.
  • Rank your network:  A+ are ambassadors.  These are people who have big network as well and they are outgoing enough to self for you.  They’re like your unpaid sales staff.
  • Emails are for you to inform, confirm, or to get people on the phone.  Don’t sell, or try to close deals via email.
  • Focus on people.  When you take care of the people, the numbers will take care of themselves.
  • 1st and 10.  First thing upon arriving at the office make ten phone calls.

This book was really designed for people in Real Estate and the guy in the story is a Real Estate agent. However after reading it, I pulled several key insights that can apply to any business.

To your success and your future.

The book that changed my life

2014 was an awesome year.  I accomplished many things and my book was one of those things.  As I held my book in my hands this past week.  I just stared at it and said, WOW.  I would have never guessed that I would write a book.  I would have never guessed that the words and concepts in the book would have even come from me five years ago.  It is amazing how quickly any of us can change who we are and become whoever we want to be.   I read a quote recently that said “the book that you write is the book that will change your life the most”, I couldn’t agree more.

In 7 ways to more, I outline seven areas that I have committed to in my life that have given me exceptional results.  What is exceptional results? For me exceptional results in these seven areas serve me in all areas in my life. Dedication to my health, a commitment to personal and self-development, a strategic goal setter, becoming a more intentional thinker, a conscientious effort on who, where, and how I spend my time, intentional about establishing and maintaining good habits, and lastly creating a foundation in faith with a positive attitude and hope towards an awesome future.

The book takes a deeper dive into all seven areas where I illustrate my personal stories that helped me identify these key areas.  We all have influences in our lives, I highlight and acknowledge the influencers I had in my life.

What happens now.  Well like my book states in the chapter in goal setting.  Once you start setting goals and accomplishing them, the momentum you get will motivate you to set more and bigger goals.  I am currently working on the next.  I cant wait to see what it is.

To get a free download of the introduction of my book go to http://www.thebrianwillett.com/publications/  On this page you can also click the link that will take you to my createspace url that will allow you to purchase the book online.

I want to leave you with this.  You are an awesome person, you can accomplish anything you choose to, you can do things that you never thought you could do, you can do whatever you want, but you just have to start doing.  Today, start doing something towards a better future and a better you.

To your success and your future.

Making payments

This weekend I have the fortunate opportunity to be in Atlanta, GA participating in the Dale Carnegie Training Leadership Certification process.  I have been a leadership trainer for years.  The process to become certified (official, with a credential) requires me to attend a four-day training event that is conducted by the company to see if I understand their material enough to represent them and deliver it.  I have my own material personally, however the certification with a 100-year-old training company gives me a pretty high level of credibility in the marketplace.

This four-day training is just one piece in the certification process. The process actually began over five years ago when I took the course the very first time.  It is a seven week course where you attend once a week for 3.5 hours.  Once you attend the course, you must be a course coach (graduate assistant twice), yep another 14 weeks.  I did all of that the last three years or so.  This weekend is the next step, and after this weekend, I will have to conduct another two classes (7 weeks a piece.)

This weekend as a trainer it is pretty challenging. The master trainer basically gives you a reality check.  They coach you on every single word you use in front of a live audience.  They provide you feedback and coach you on the spot in front of class participants and several other trainers.  The process is very humbling to stay the least.

As challenging as this process has been, is now, and will be in the future. I know it is necessary for me to get to the next level.  This weekend one of my colleagues and I when ever we get coached hard and are challenged, after it is over we just will look at each other and whisper (Making payments).  Yep, that is what we are doing,  We are paying the price, making the payments, investing.

1st thing about paying the price:  You have to do it.  There are no free rides.  You have to go through the process.  They just can’t say come up to me and say “You are now a trainer.”

2nd thing about paying the price:  If you didn’t pay the price you wouldn’t learn anything.  The process is what makes you better.  The credential is cool and I need it, but more importantly is the skills I am learning.

If you are reading this congratulations.  My challenge for you is this.  If you are looking for a magic pill that will help you lose weight, playing the lottery thinking that you will become wealthy, in your mind you deserve that promotion, ask yourself “Am I paying the price?”  If you don’t pay the price none of it matters, the skills you learn, the processes you develop, the initiatives you take, the sacrifices you make is what makes the process what it is, and it also makes them stick.

I’ll close on this.  Are you willing to do what others had to do, so you can do what they do.  If you are looking at a promotion or increased sales, what do you have to do. You want to be skinnier and healthier, are you willing to do what it takes and pay the price.  If you are, start making the payments. You have to pay first.  There is no way around it.

To your success and your future.