Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Intent vs Content: A Valuable Lesson in Communication

Recognizing the Power of Intent

There are three way in which we communicate:

1) Body Language
2) Tone
3) Words

Research shows us that your Body Language is close to 50 percent of the message someone takes away when they talk to you.

Tone is close to 40 percent with our Words only contributing 10 percent to what is understood.

Why are Body Language and Tone so powerful?

Together they form a powerful visual and auditory representation of your INTENT in any conversation.

Life has taught me that when people recognize a positive intent in any conversation you can actual mess up the content (words) to some extent and still achieve a positive outcome.

Today, my workshop in Mont Joli, Quebec was no exception. It represented a milestone in my career as I facilitated my first workshop in French.

The fact was that my French today was FAR from perfect, yet the feedback and evaluations I received at the end of the day were very, very positive and encouraging. The attendees told me that they had a great day.

Why? I believe because I made a concerted effort throughout the day to show them through my tone and my body language that I genuinely cared about what they took away from the workshop and how it could help them in their lives. That message spoke way louder than any imperfections in my French and was the message they took away.

It is always good to be conscious of what your Body Language and Tone are telling people about your Intent in any situation. Are they helping you or hurting you?

The Short and Sweet:

Demonstrate a positive INTENT in any situation and the pressure for perfect CONTENT is off which will lead to great RESULTS.

Have a great week!


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Heart, Mind or Feet: What do you value most as a leader?

Happy New Year to each one of you! I always get excited in the early months of each new year for the opportunity it represents. An opportunity to fail more, learn more, win more, grow more, do more.

For example in two weeks I'll be facilitating my first workshop in the beautiful language of French in a remote northern community of Quebec.

A sermon I heard last week triggered this question and I'm excited to share my thoughts with you. So lets talk about Mind, Heart & Feet as they relate to my adventure in Quebec and leadership in general:


My mind has been telling me alot of things. Like:

1) You can do it. You've worked in bilingual positions at Shell and managed just fine. It will be okay.

2) What are you doing! You can't do this. This is a professional speaking gig and they will expect PERFECT French. Yours my friend, is not.


My heart has been telling me alot of things as well:

1) Fear! Its been attacked by the occasional fear of failure. What happens if they do want Perfect French and I don't deliver?

2) Excitement! Here's an opportunity to connect with a people group you really like ( i have alot of French Canadian friends) and travel to a section of Quebec you haven't visited before. Awesome!

3) Excitement! At the end of this year you will be more fully bilingual in French because of your learnings in the 4 times you go there.


You likely never knew that feet talked but they do!

In my moments of fear, they've numbed and screamed stop!
In my moments of excitement they've tingled and hesitantly started to walk.

They are however bound in some boots that are moving forward. I've signed a contract to do it and I have a plane flight booked, both which are expensive to cancel. So fear or not, in February my feet will be in Mont Joli Quebec for 2 days of workshops on Behavioral Interviewing... and I know that is a good thing because the only way to learn is to do.

Mind, Heart or Feet? Which is most Important?

My experience is this: The only way to get your Mind to focus on the positive and your heart to be calmed, content and happy is to force your feet to walk and experience the learning and growth that comes from doing. Too much focus on mind and heart can block the steps required to succeed. Take care of people's feet and the rest will take care of itself.

So here are a couple challenges to you:

I challenge each one of you to make 2012 the year when your feet walk into at least one thing that stretches your comfort zones and that will also be the foundation for your future growth, success & happiness.

I challenge each one of you to similarly challenge every employee who works for you to walk into something new that will be the foundation for their future growth, success & happiness.

What will that be? Only you can decide. Whatever it is, I am excited for you! I know you and they will be glad you did.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Ultimate Plan to Dealing with Difficult People: Your Free PDF Download

Whiners, Lazies, Bullies, Passive Aggressives, Stubborns and the list goes on. How to Deal with Difficult People is frequently a top request
in many of the workshops I do. While it may seem there are unique solutions to each type of difficult person, I've found there is an underlying general approach that will give you power in most every situation.

I've put it on my website for you to download and use.

For your copy of the "Ultimate Plan for Dealing with Difficult People" pdf click on the link below and save the document to your computer.

Download by Clicking Here.
Have a great week!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Be an A-Lister! 2 B-Lists to Get you There!

A-listers is a term commonly used for those elite Hollywood stars that make over $15 million per film. While I want each one of you to be an A-lister, I don't share the Hollywood definition of what it means. I think that the Hollywood definition is dangerous to us all because it defines success by monetary income/wealth or the "Stuff" we've accumulated. For me an A-Lister is someone who is simply happy with their life because they are meeting the goals they set for themselves no matter what they are.

I consider my mother-in-law an A-Lister. As cattle ranchers in central Alberta you don't make anywhere near the money that Hollywood's A-Listers do, but it doesn't matter. Spend a day with her on her farm and you will experience and know what true happiness and peace is. You will have spent a day with an A-lister.

I want to share a secret. Most A-listers will tell you that their success comes from being an avid, die hard B-lister. This blog is about sharing with you two B lists that can be powerful in helping you achieve success in your life.

B - List #1: Your Bucket List

Made famous by the movie starring Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman (2 thumbs up from this reviewer), a Bucket List is simply a list of 10 or so things you want to do before you die or "kick the bucket". Go ahead, take a moment and jot them down. It is amazing to me, how many people are totally dissatisfied in life because realistically they do not have any goals other than to maybe "Be Happy".

The irony of happiness, joy & fulfillment is that they only come with achievement, growth, success. Having Bucket List Goals give us something to work and grow towards. They help us define success so we know when we have achieved some. A big danger in life is that we always feel incomplete as society convinces us we don't have it all yet. When you know what your Goals are you know when you've achieved success. No one can tell you otherwise.

Bucket List goals don't have to be and shouldn't be all about "stuff","things". My mother-in-law is a great A-lister example of where they are not. They can be about relationships, faith, balance, giving etc. The existence of goals though, puts purpose back in a life that may have been missing it. We all know that purpose is key to motivation.

I don't care how young you are 3, 30 or 94.. it is never too late to experience the benefits of a Bucket List! There is power in knowing what your goals are and not letting anyone sway you from them.

B - List #2: Your Baggage List

This list hasn't had any movies made about it yet but I'll consider any offers :O).

I invented the Baggage List last week during my 'Dealing with Emotions' workshops in Calgary, Edmonton & Vancouver.

The Baggage List is 5 things that are currently weighing you down and will kill you (not necessarily literally, although I think we've all seen that) if you don't deal with them!

Baggage List items kill Bucket List items because they stop us dead in our tracks by miring our focus on our problems, struggles etc. Personal Baggage Lists kill productivity in organizations.

The Great News about our Baggage List is that we don't have to solve them to drop them and continue running towards our Bucket Goals. We just need to know their is a plan in place for resolution. At that point we can drop the worry and not have it weigh us down.

One common example of a Baggage List item may be personal finances. If you are in debt for $100000 and it has you stressed out, it doesn't take a cheque for $100000 to drop it of your List.

Sitting down with a financial planner and looking at the truth of the situation and coming up with a realistic plan for financial health can drop the worry from your mind and allow you to immediately, today, start to focus on running and doing the things that will lead to your success tommorrow.

With no plan we spend most of our days consumed by worrying. Not the life I wish for any one of us.

So Here is the Plan:

Write down a Bucket List and Ditch each item on your Baggage List
with a plan around it.

Here's to seeing each other on the A-List!
Have a great week.

Some Feedback from Last Week's "Dealing With Emotions" Workshops:

"I sometimes get nervous about going to these courses, mostly because of fear of meeting new people. This was the best course I have ever attended. David did a fantastic job of engaging our group. I loved it and learned so much. Thanks!"

"At first I was taken back by your very high energy levels but soon I came to realize that this was going to be one of the best learning days ever. I came away with so much great information and I wasn't bored for a second. Thank You!"

Invite David to your Organization

Contact me to bring powerful training to your organization's teams!
For Info and Pricing contact :david@marketbeamer or (403) 874-1044

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

The Power of Emotional Intelligence: Anything But Fluff!

This week I launch out in Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver teaching a "Managing your Emotions in the Workplace" workshop. If history is any predictor the word "Emotion" will scare away some people from the class. It is a dangerous word to put in to the title of any course from an attendance point of view.

I've met alot of professionals who scoff at the discussion of anything to do with emotions as weak and unproductive. Fluff is a word I've heard more than once. If you lean that way, consider these stats:

1) More than 50 percent of North American employees lack the motivation to keep learning and improving on the job.

Most people would tell you they want to learn and grow but many can't get past anger and/or bitterness that halts them in their tracks. Do you know anyone stuck in resentment or bitterness over something unresolved in the past? What is that burden costing that individual? Their Team?

2) Four in 10 people are not able to work co-operatively with fellow employees.
Conflict left unmanaged grows from small events to all out battles and I'm not surprised that 4 out of 10 people are not able to work co-operatively with fellow employees. How much is employees who refuse to work with each other costing your organization?

3) Only 19 percent of entry-level applicants have enough self-discipline in their work habits.So it turns out that entry level applicants are like most of us with our New Year's Resolutions! We don't have the discipline to carry out our goals. Not because we lack the skills and ability to do the job.. Its just that without the stress of deadlines and accountability there is always something more important to do, like watch Criminal Minds on TV.

4) Billions of Dollars are wasted on development training (As a trainer, I can't believe I just wrote that !).. leading to a less than desired return on investment in leadership training.
Many of us KNOW what we need to do to fix the things that are wrong around us. We have daydreamed and had nightmares about it for years. It isn't knowledge that is the sole missing link, it is the COURAGE to do what we know we need to do.

That's where Emotional Intelligence is so powerful in translating training that doesn't give results into a powerful vehicle for change and growth in your company. It helps employees get to the root cause of unproductivity.

If you recognize the opportunity and manage it, Emotions will become a very powerful catalyst for positive change in your life.

I like the analogy of snow, in small doses it is soft and fluffy, but ignored when it packs to together it unleashes an avalanche that you don't want to be anywhere near.

Don't ignore Emotional Intelligene training. Helping employees recognize and effectively manage their emotions and those around them can pay considerable and measureable cash dividends for your company.

That my friends, is HARDCORE!

Monday, June 27, 2011

The Incredible Power of Authenticity for Business

Authenticity. Freedom to be yourself. YOURSELF .... complete with all your glorious strengths and weaknesses.

To place yourself in your authenticity is a powerful place for both corporations and individuals. I'd like to spend a bit on why it is so important for companies and how Social Media can be an important tool in finding it.

As an example, let me brag on a favorite restaurant of mine in Calgary called Marathon. Located on 10th St NW in Calgary's trendy Kensington district it serves up awesome Ethiopian fare.

A couple fundamental distinctions of Ethiopian food & culture. First, there are no knives and forks! Ethiopian ethnic delights are served up on a common platter on top of a spongy bread called Injera which you tear and use to scoop up your food. Second, Ethiopia runs on a 13 month calendar as compared to our 12 month calendar (which will be relevant in describing the timeliness of their service :O) )

As with every single corporation out there, this restaurant comes with its strengths and weaknesses.

Some Strengths: Amazing & Fresh Food, Relaxed Atmosphere and Jazzy type music, Owners whose smiles and laughter could cheer up a continent.

Some Weaknesses: The service can seem like they are on a different calendar: slow. Parking can be limited in the area.

Whether you are happy with this restaurant will depend on your goals for going there. If you want a quick bite before heading out to a movie or play you will almost certainly end up being extremely frustrated and disappointed if not angry. If you are there for business there will be a moment of awkwardness as you both weren't quite prepared to share a platter never mind doing so with your bare hands/fingers (you can get knives and forks if you ask)
However, if your goal is to spend some quality time with a person you love or want to get to know better, then this is the perfect place. You won't feel the rush to vacate your table for the next "shift". The slowness of service won't matter as you fully engage in conversation with your partner over a glass of wine and some relaxing music. The wait will seem worth it when you taste this fresh and fantastic fare with its complex flavours from spicy berbere dishes to comfort food lentil based creations all brought together perfectly by a sweet vinegar salad that refreshes your palette for every next bite. As your hands cross the platter to gather your next mouthful it brushes against your partner's hand which is reaching for something on your side. You get the picture... It is incredible.

I think the danger for business comes when we try to be everthing to everyone. Marathon's long term success will come in marketing itself simply for what it is. Unique flavors, Great People and a leisurely dining experience. I think there is a huge market in any city for that.

When we figure out our authenticity as a business, our authenticity being our strengths and the real, true experience customers will have when they engage us in our environment, great things happen.

a)We attract people looking for what we have to offer and we can just be relaxed and genuinely ourselves in serving them. A fundmental truth in managing people is to know that fundamentally people don't change. If you are constantly trying to be someone else in your life as a business its a tough road.

b) We push away potential clients who would only be dissatisfied and angry with our products and services. You cut down on the huge cost of trying to service that segment of our customer base today and you don't have them walking about of your business telling 10 friends about how crappy your product/service/business is.

Here's where I believe every business needs to leverage the power of Social Media. You see in the old days that dissatisfied customer would talk to those 10 friends over the phone. You couldn't see it, hear it which meant you couldn't react to it. My experience as a Retail Manager suggests that 9 out of 10 dissatisfied customers leave your store and never come back without ever confronting you on your issue (giving you a chance to make them happy).

Today, instead of talking to 10 friends on the phone, they are talking to thousands of friends on the Web! While the viral nature of web reviews and comments seem daunting, it actually should be viewed as an opportunity.

You see in the old days you couldn't react to the complaining because you didn't hear their phone conversations. Today, whether your company has a formal presence in Social Media or not, it doesn't stop the public from talking about you in these channels.

The opportunity is to listen. Google Alerts, for example lets you have Google keep an eye out for any new entries on the Web that contain search terms which you define. One of them should be your company or product name and any shortforms of it. When new "discussions" appear on the web, Google emails you automatically and points you to it.

You may or may not like what you hear but feedback is the essence of any businesses growth and it will be powerful in helping you define your authenticity in the eyes of your customer base (which is often different then what we see it as). Your authenticity will then allow you to be targetted with the search tags and keywords you use in helping the right audience find you.
If it is on average 10 times more expensive to attract a new customer then retain an old one then you should delight in your new ability to respond to these customer concerns and potentially turn bad experiences into raving fans for your business.

I encourage you to start embracing various Social Media platforms for the opportunity it gives you to find your authenticity. My last thought: "You may be able to eak out a living outside of your authenticity, but you will find LIFE when you dare place yourself in it."

Monday, March 7, 2011

What does your Team see: Power or a Person?

Here is a question I heard this weekend for all you Leaders, Managers & Supervisors out there:

Does your team see you as a Person or do they just see Power?

If they see you as a Person they are much more likely to trust, respect and succeed for you. If they only see Power they may reclude into an environment of fear, hiding, hesitancy and failure.

Jack Welch, CEO of General Electric once said the secret to his success was "When I get power, I give it away"

Jack, by his 40 year distinguished track record shows that he gets it.

A leader's job is to lay down clear and challenging expectations of their people and equip them for success. Great leaders, once they've done that, let go. Yes they are there for advice, counsel and equipping but they won't just take over the game from an employee when they struggle.

The power of consequences, not the power of position will help protect the interests of the company, department and team of getting things done and done right.

That's great news because as a leader it takes the pressure off. Cheer them on, equip them with expectations and tools and give them the power to decide their future. That lets you present yourself as a person who cares about their success and wants to dialogue on how to continue to make it happen.

When employees own their future .. great things happen. Most Owners try not to let a business fail.

Have a great week!

"Your Man with the Plan" for Better Teams and Better Results.

Here are some attendee reviews from my most recent workshops:

"David, Your expertise shines through with your passion and you are a great mentor!"

"Very positive. Fun to be around and you made the day fly by. Thanks for all you do."

"Great level of energy and passion. Knowledgeable about the topic. I learned alot! Loved the positivity and the feedback."

"I leave with a very positive outlook on the changes I can/will implement at my workplace from this course. Changes in me that will make a huge difference to my team."

Call me at (403) 874-1044 or email me at david@marketbeamer.com
to talk about bringing powerful training to your teams in 2011.