The Truth about Leadership

When I first started teaching at a local Community College, I attended a conference for rookie instructors.

Dave Stewart the Director of the Continuing Education department said something to us that made a major impact on me as a teacher / trainer / speaker, when he said,

“Your job as a teacher is to help your students learn. Period! The rest is just details.”

I have never forgotten that truth that he shared with me that day.

And when you get to thinking about how to lead others, especially sales reps.

Remember your job as a leader is to help your employees succeed. Period! The rest is just details. 

Because I believe that when you pay someone to do a job, you rent their hands.

When you give them interesting work you may engage their heads.

But it is only when you connect with them personally and they know that you are on their side and you are there to help them succeed, that is when they will throw their heart in their work.

And that is when the magic happens.

And that’s when they will perform, beyond your expectations.


The Science of Giving Gifts

 The following tip is from my Guide titled: The 7+ Habits of Highly Effective Husbands.  When you read it think how this psychology may come into play when you are giving gifts to your customers.

The Science of Giving Gifts 

Giving your wife a gift is a great way to show your love, but if you are not careful it can blow up in your face.

Like the time when we were dating I gave my wife April a beautiful red lace rose, not knowing that when you took the plastic off, the head of the rose was really a little pair (and I mean little) of skimpy underwear.

That wouldn’t have been so bad, except that I gave it to her at her birthday party… at my parents’ house.

And that summer when she started talking to me again… (her birthday is in December), she suggested that I needed help.


And that is when I decided to study and learn the science behind effective gift giving.

A science that has been a mystery to husbands (and sales reps) for years… until now!


What I discovered were thes 4 elements of effective gift giving that I call the T.I.M.S. factor.


The 1st element it Timing:

A gift that is a surprise is more powerful that one she expects.

You still need to give her a gift on special occassions, like Christmas, her Birthday or your Anniversary, but you may find that she will be just as delighted if you bring her flowers after work on Friday.

But, don’t do it every Friday… because then she’ll expect it which will not only make it less powerful, but if you forget one week she will be disappointed. This is certainly not the emotion you want to generate.


The 2nd element is your Investment:

And by investment, I don’t just mean the money you spend but also the time and effort you take in thinking about, finding and picking out just the right gift for her.

The more time and effort you invest, the more powerful the gift will be.

Trust me, women know which gifts are bought on December 24th.


The 3rd element is your Motive:

My research shows that there are 4 different types of gifts.

The “Just because I love you (or was thinking about you)” gift, which is the most powerful.

The “Thank you” gift, which is the next most powerful.

The “Negotiation” gift, which is less powerful, because if you receive something in return it is not really a gift.

And the “Please don’t make me sleep on the couch again tonight, honey” or the “suck-up” gift, which is abviously the least powerful.


The 4th element of the T.I.M.S. model of effective gift giving is the Sensation that she feels when she gets your gift.

If your gift leaves her happy… you’re golden.

If you have to go out and buy her a “Please don’t make me sleep on the couch again tonight, honey” gift to make up for your original one… not so much.

So remember the Science of Gift Giving and think T.I.M.S. before buying her a gift.

The Secret of how I became “The Sales Dating Guy”

I recently explained why I am called The Sales Dating guy in an answer to the following question on LinkedIN:

Business analogies. Do you use them?

Here is my answer:

Analogies are a great way to make complex material more digestible for your audience.

For instance, I use the analogy that Selling is like Dating and Customer Service is like Marriage in my Sales Training programs.

Using this analogy not only adds a lot of humour to the program, but it hooks the new sales concepts that I am teaching to something they already know (dating).

This increases retention of the knowledge which paves the way for a powerful (and fun) learning experience.

I would encourage you to continue to use analogies that make sense in your situation and with your audience in order to increase retention and help your audience “get” what you are communicating to them.

That explains why I use the analogy, but it doesn’t explain how I got the name “The Sales Dating Guy”.

That story includes a road trip and an enlighted experience with a powerful woman from Australia (who is not my wife) …. which I will save for a future blog.

If you want to find our more about how Sales Dating can help you and your organization increase sales, email me @ or phone me @ 519-820-6207.


Does Self Motivation Exist? Or is it just another HR Term?

This question was posted on LindedIN.

A fellow poster, Arie Versluis gave this answer:

The only kind of motivation which exists is self-motivation.

Ask yourself if you can motivate a person and the honest answer will be no.

The only thing you can do is create conditions in which a person has an option to motivate him/herself and then hope they will motivate themselves.Creating conditions in which a lot of people seem to be motivated is however no guarantee that all are motivated. It is always an individual choice.

And don’t forget that motivation is not a general state of mind. Motivation is always related to specific subject. For example, people can be motivated to interact with colleagues but not be motivated to deliver a high quality of service. In this situation are they motivated or are they not?”

I agree with Arie’s point of view, when he said that the only kind of motivation is self-motivation. And we can only adjust the environment, so someone else can choose to take action. 

Communicating to an employee (or customer) how it would be in their best interest (and how they win personally) will increase the odds of them choosing your desired action. 

Personal trust in business – Have we lost the ability to trust one another?

Here is my reponse to this LinkedIn question posted by David G.

I don’t believe we have totally lost the ability to trust one another.

 I do believe however, that trust is earned.

 Whether we trust one another depends on many different factors:

Our History: If we have been burned in the past we will be less likely to put ourselves in that vulnerable state again. However we are more likely to trust the person who has come through for us in the past.

The Data: We look at all the information that we can see, hear, feel, taste and touch to determine whether the situation is safe.

The Context: When we look at the situation, the reputation and the personal incentives (how they will win) of the other person are also considered.

Building trust is a slow process that is earned a little at a time. Come through for me this time and I will trust you a little more next time.

However, you can lose trust in an instant. As one of my favourite sales gurus Zig Ziglar  says,

“If you lie to me and I catch you. I will put a question mark at the end of everything you say in the future.”

There is also an excellent book by Stephen M.R. Cover called The Speed of Trust, which talks about how to build trust, and how building a trusting organization increases speed and reduces costs.