Easy to do! Easy not to do!

Habits/Goals/ Behaviors seem hard to start and in too many cases hard to stop.


The following quote is from Jim Rohn (American entrepreneur, author, and motivational speaker) –

“We've all heard the expression, ‘An apple a day keeps the doctor away.'  Well, I've got a good question for you:  What if it's true?  Wouldn't that be easy to do—to eat an apple a day?  Here's the problem:  It's also easy not to do.”


I have a belief, that we all can start a new habit/goal/behavior, and we can all set the process as easy as possible for achievement.  However, as Jim Rohn pointed out eating an apple a day is easy to do, easy to measure and easy to accomplish, but it's also easy not to do. 

Over the past years, I have posted thoughts about setting goals.  I try to help set a foundation for others to get in the goal setting habit.  Easy to do! Easy not to do!  Less than 5% of people actually set and write goals down. 

As a longtime member of Toastmasters, I remember a speech given about goals.  I can't recall the speaker’s name, but it did stick with me. 

The speaker said, start your habit/goal/behavior journey small.  Pick one item to accomplish over a period of time — make it a 12 month period.  Track your progress daily.  If you miss a day or two don’t worry just keep going.  I thought this was pretty simple basic — but, why not give it a try and get going.

At the time, I wanted to increase my daily reading habit.  I thought reading 10 pages per day was doable — hoping to read about 10 books that year.  It worked!  Today I have a sustained reading goal of 15 pages per day, I've read a lot of books over the years.  


“But as Jim Rohn would say, “What's simple to do is also simple not to do.” The magic is not in the complexity of the task; the magic is in the doing of simple things repeatedly and long enough to ignite the miracle of the Compound Effect.”


Begin now and have great satisfaction of accomplishment for 2020!

Why is this here? – WITH!

If working on continuous improvement in your work life and/or home life, review the following concept, and try to apply it daily.

I don't have the name of the originator of this acronym. However. I use it at work and at home.

Why Is This Here? – WITH.

Part of the process of applying Lean Manufacturing uses the 5s+1 methodology for reviewing the workplace (1. Sort 2. Straighten 3. Sweep/Shine 4. Standardize 5. Sustain and +1 = Safety). This is not as easy as it sounds. Touring a manufacturing facility, office environment or even your own home often shows items not in place, and in many cases not even where they should be. 

To get a feel for the process, start with your current area and surroundings. In my home office I see piles of “Gonna-Do” projects forming. Seems like they start and stall. Look at just one item/project for a few minutes. Review what is in the pile, folder or box and throw away the truly non-essential items. Decide if it is really a goal contributing project, a nice to have project, or maybe a wishful non-critical project. Why Is This Here? – WITH. You will be amazed just sitting at your own desk, home or office and look at what is out and waiting or not needed. 

I realize this thinking is not for everyone, but you will find out of place clutter in the oddest places.

Walking around with this attitude and thought process helps keep momentum going, especially if you are trying to 5s + 1 a manufacturing facility, or your own home.  Start, doing and sustaining the 5s + 1 attitude: 

1. Sort 2. Straighten 3. Sweep/Shine 4. Standardize 5. Sustain and +1 = Safety. 

Remember to ask:  Why Is This Here? – WITH.

Good Luck on your Lean Journey — Once started you will find applications everywhere.

Sales, Selling — Follow-up?

Ask a sales person –

“When is the best time to follow-up with XYZ customer?”

“When is the best time to follow-up on a recent quote?

“When is the best time to follow-up on “Blah, Blah, Blah?”

All too often we hear, It’s too early, or I am not sure now is the right time, or I don’t want to bug the Buyer/Customer/Etc.

Have you ever taken the time to think about “Follow-Up” in selling?

Some sales people follow-up too often and disturb/disrupt the potential customer.  It is estimated that you need 7 contacts with potential clients/customers before a transaction happens.

I am self-taught in selling and when I found a really good system I latched on to it.  I have been using the Sandler Selling system for over fifteen years. (I would be happy to provide my contacts to anyone interested.)

A great technique that I learned and use is the Sandler Technique of using an Up-Front Contract with potential customers.

Simply ask the prospect/Client for the next time contact would be appropriate.  Set an exact date and time if possible or get at least a time frame for contact — Then do what was agreed upon!

Too many times I have had sales people working for me or trying to sell to me;  Stop — after the very first call.

Never get caught in this trap —  It’s too soon to call — Now it’s too late the order was let to someone else.

10,000 hours – to master a particular field? Yes! or No!

After 35+ years in business operations and sales and I feel qualified. Not sure I would walk around proclaiming mastery of business or sales. Over the many years I feel very confident I am pretty good at business operations and sales.

As a continuous learner I have read about and have several questions about the concept of “10,000 hours to mastery of a field”.

In addition to business and sales, I have been learning and practicing a musical instrument, the banjo, for many years. I have tracked my hours of learning, and I have just over 2,200 hours logged.

This year I have also started re-learning guitar from my high school days. I have never been a good player of either instrument and certainly wouldn't play in front of anyone.

Two years ago I stepped out and went to a coaching class with other people like me. My progress has really accelerated and I now play for others and even have put some you tube videos out.

I am thinking about and exploring the 10,000 hour theory. I have to admit that in business, sales and even a musical instrument, practice quality not just total hours seems to have a very large impact on moving ahead. — So, what constitutes mastery.

I can't believe I will have mastery at the 10,000 hour time frame, just because I put in the hours. There must be a measurement of quality of learning.

As a continuous learner, I see many new books, theories and concepts coming out daily, especially on the internet. Is mastery an accomplished goal or an on-going process of self-improvement.

I'd like to think, pursue and write on this further.

Feedback and comment welcome!

Sales – Is your entire week planned for contacts and gaining new business?

I write and talk about weekly, monthly and yearly goals and performance for salespeople.

In my career I have had opportunity to build a point system that if followed, allows a salesperson in the Aerospace industry to create a sales year of $3,000,000. After mastering this point system a salesperson can then go on to predict and sell to a higher level and build a larger income.

This point system works for one week as follows (Assuming 230 working days 46 working weeks):

1.    Face-to-face meeting contacts completed – 5 x 6 points = 30 points

2.    Telephone contacts (Meaningful actual contacts) – 50 x 2 points = 100 points

3.    Other contact, Email, letter/brochure, other social media – 30 x 1 point = 30 points 

Total for the week = 160 points; If executed weekly Minimum 7,500 points for the year. I’ve proven over and over, success with continuous execution of daily, weekly and yearly points – No Excuses!

There have been many salespeople that thought they could perform to this system and failed miserably. Others that once understanding the system combined with really good sales training went on to sell well above $3,000,000.

Think about this and see if it makes sense for you.

I will be expanding this over the next few weeks.

Have you ever completely Hacked off your customers and didn’t even know it.

What is one of the worst things you can do to a customer — Cause opportunity for an RMA – Returned Material Authorization — something is wrong and the customer is not happy!

An RMA is the Black Mark of Black Marks.

I started my career of customer service in the world of RMA and Warranty.

It is quite possibly the worst and most frustrating thing you can do to a customer.

  1. The product was bought to use not send back.
  2. On-time, instant gratification, great product —Gone!
  3. There is a tremendous need for a system, procedures, and people to handle the returns.  (I wrote complete procedures with cost to handle.)
  4. Both Sides are MAD – Customer returning product and the supplier trying to handle the non-routine work.

From experience of owning my own company, I have witnessed the process of people in the organization knowingly shipping product, “under my watch”, that was bad, to make the numbers.  When I discovered this several people were immediately removed from my organization. 


As I stopped and reflected on what happened, I decided I was probably part or all of the cause.  I summoned all managers and as a group we decided this needed correction.  Most likely another moment of getting the Lean Journey started and not really being aware of it.

The underlying cause was bad operating systems.  We did not have good repeatable processes to ship flawless material.  So began the journey.

We did get better and improved.  That year we began a real “Lean Journey”.  I was amazed at the rate we lowered RMA’s at our company!

Think about the impact of RMA’s on your business. 

Have a great year!

Selling is a continuum of numbers!

A continuum of numbers make the game of sales work!  Do you know your numbers?

Last year, several salespeople from different companies asked that I start an accountability group. We met Fridays, 5 to 6 people per call. Great learning for all and they are on the way to understanding and managing a continuous sales process.

Just finding salespeople that want help in learning and being accountable is refreshing.  Also, learning that companies don’t have sales training or don’t understand and teach a sales process is too bad, actually sad.

So — To have a group of salespeople requesting an accountability group is great. As I explained, this is a tough profession — but — can be very rewarding.

When I sold my company, I was criticized by the new owners for high turnover in the sales force. I explained that selling is the easiest job to look at and see if results are happening.  I provided continuing sales training. Sales training is not a onetime event it is truly a continuous process. Even today, I attend training and read new books on selling.

My challenge as facilitator, has been to teach and help these people learn, and that once you have a working set of numbers to define your particular sales process — sales potential is unlimited!

We look at numbers every week and discuss the selling process. Each person has up to 5 minutes or less to tell us about the week, lessons learned, victories and defeats.  The people not doing their numbers and making excuses are called out by the others.  Bottom line for this group is — are the numbers being completed or not. 

All realize that if Face-to-Face meetings, calls and follow-up are completed properly, sales will result.

Have a great week! 

Do you finish what you start? Or – like me have many projects ready to go!

I have many things and projects in my office of “Started but unfinished ideas/projects/business”.  Do you?

Over many years these things have been piling up around me.

Some projects were doomed from the start.  Other projects are staring at me ready for action.

What things have you started and never finished?

What ideas or dreams are waiting for you in a file or a stack of papers as “Started but unfinished”?

It’s time to start now and head them toward completion. 

For me I have had two projects on my mind:

  1. Finishing writing the details of a one a 1 year sales accountability plan.
  2. Restart my learning and playing guitar. 

Pick at least one project or idea and begin!

Put this on your goal list and monitor and record daily work toward seeing a finish line and completion. 

Even if you only work a few minutes per day, you will be surprised how quickly the idea or project will take shape.

Then it can be ongoing or complete.

William Shakespeare – “All glory comes from daring to begin.”  Good Luck!

7,500 — A magical sales number?

How are your numbers going for 2019?  Do you know your numbers? Do you track your numbers? Or – Do you let things happen and hope you have a good year?

Daily behaviors completed and measured get results. 

I utilize and require salespeople working with me to use a tracking system consisting of 7,500 points per year. 

I know that if a salesperson does the behaviors consistent with Prospecting, Telephone, Email, and Face-to-Face customer contact at a rate of about 33 points on average for 230 working days per year, can bring in $3,000,000+ in sales bookings for the company.  It is a proven process.  It works.

Many sales people won't do daily behaviors. Doing and tracking is hard. 

A lot of sales people get little or no training in selling behaviors.  I’ve met, hired and fired sales people who are afraid of the accountability a system creates. 

Couple a good behavioral system with consistent on-going training and sales happen. 

Let me know if you want more point system information.  I'll also direct you to some good sales training to go with it.

5 – Tips to keep your “GOALS” moving!

Many people have stopped working on their Goals for year 2019. 

Hopefully you have made it easy to see your goals and review them for progress frequently.

Here are 5 tips to keep your goals moving for 2019:

  1. Make sure you have goals written down and easy to find.
  2. Look at your goals daily.
  3. Make time to work on your goals daily, even if you spend a few minutes.
  4. If a goal seems too hard, revise it.  Look at smaller parts of each goal to work on.
  5. Never give up! — Make 2019 your best year yet!