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January 2016
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Canvas Notes

Act

Act

Every once in a while, my kids decide to “play” work. They put on a coat and tie and sit at desks writing out pseudo contracts. In this day of constant mobile entertainment, it is rare to see kids pretend, but it always makes me smile.

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Canvas Notes

Magnetic

Magnetic

I often use kids as an analogy for a better version of our business selves. That may be because they are so raw and uncooked. In other words, they don’t have a lot of the baggage that comes from adulthood and their frontal lobes are not fully developed (science backs me up on this one).

As I try to help mold my kids into people who make good decisions, respect others, and thirst for knowledge, I toss a barrage of anecdotes and philosophies at them. As you can imagine, it is probably exhausting for those two little lobes, being exposed to the constancy of my voice.

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Perspective

Momentum – Energizing your sphere of influence

Momentum

Influence is essential. Whether you’re planning to implement a new idea or hoping for some changes in the year ahead, influencing your sphere is the first step.

Fascinated by the human ability to persuade, researchers have been studying influence for more than 60 years. The question they query is always the same: How can one person change another person’s behavior through simple words and actions?

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Canvas Notes

The death of teams

DeathOfTeams

It seems to me that team sports is no longer truly about the team. If you have spent any time in youth programs over the past few years, I am sure you would more than agree with me. In fact, you may even consider the idea that team sports teaches us the opposite of the lessons we covet.

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Canvas Notes

I’m Wonderful

ImWonderful

Happy holidays. Time to reflect on the past year and consider the possibilities for the year to come. Time to assess what you did right and what might not have worked out like you planned. Either way, the concept of “glass half full” always applies, but that doesn’t mean you’re actually feeling positive every possible moment.

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Perspective

Plugging In – 10 tips for improving your connection skills

PluggingIn

What? You didn’t get the memo. Competing with others is out. Connecting with others to share ideas, work together on projects and offer support is in. And here’s the thing – taking your connections to the next level doesn’t have to be as difficult as you may think. It may even be fun.

The world is making a shift to what I call “Connecting 2.0.” It’s more meaningful than the “mile-wide and inch-deep” type of connecting we associate with social media. It’s based on sharing and co-creating, not self-interest. It’s authentic, it feels good and it works.

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Sales

Talking the Talk – Why having better selling conversations matters

TheTalk

As Barry approached Diane’s office, he could see that she was busy at work. Except for a small space directly in front of her computer, Diane’s desk was covered with papers and stacks of files.

“You look busy,” said Barry, who was one of her co-workers in the marketing department at Mega Technologies.

“I’m working on the communication plan for our new product rollout,” Diane said. “The graphic design team is working on collateral now.”

“It’s the biggest launch we’ve had in a decade,” Barry said. “With all the new collateral you’re getting ready to print, I bet Frank calls you every day.”

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Perspective

Game Planning – Making strategic innovation work

GamePlanning

It is the resounding cry of businesses today. Despite prevailing imperatives, the list of companies that fail to innovate and subsequently perish continues to grow. Add Radio Shack and Sears to the doomed trilogy that includes Borders, Blackberry and Blockbuster. These companies perhaps talked about innovating, they planned to innovate, even invested time and money. But at the end of the day, they failed to innovate and, subsequently, to thrive.

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Perspective

Follow the Leader – Why being a leader is good for business

FollowTheLeader

Stop for a minute – now think about the forces that are driving the industry. In the race to get your customers what they want when they want it and continually exceed their expectations, at the very least, you must stay in step with what the competition is doing. Keeping up with the Joneses is an age-old practice that every company, in every industry, in every country in the world follows to heart.

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Canvas Notes

Make It Real

MakeItReal

Success comes from overcoming obstacles. Sure, the rich get richer and there are countless people that are handed down a good starting point. However, the greatest success stories are embedded in humble beginnings. We know inherently that the greater the obstacle, the more remarkable the story.

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