How Leaders and Sales People Make Lasting Impacts

The other day I came home and my 17 year old daughter said she can not get me out of her head.  I asked her what she was talking about.  She said “every time I procrastinate or think about a task I either don’t want to do or find it hard to do, your words ‘Mind over Matter’ (if you don’t mind, it don’t matter) keep popping up in my head and I clearly see your face.”  She then smiled and screamed “I can’t get you out of my mind.  Help me!!!!!!”

That was the moment I was waiting for my whole life— getting validation that I truly am making a difference in my daughter’s life.  It’s what we all strive for with our employees, customers, family and friends – making a difference and knowing your words of advice are being heard and being acted on.

There are 7 keys to creating lasting impacts in the lives of others:

  1. Accept People for Who They Are— We are all different and therefore we look at things differently and have different aspirations.  Stop trying to make people do things the way you do them.  Accept them for who they are and guide them with your expertise so they can flourish in their own way.
  2. Relate to People—People don’t do things because they are told to do it.  They do things because they feel it will help them.  Relating to others is sharing ideas in the context of how it will help them.  Stop talking about your reasons as to why they should do things.
  3. Acknowledge Successes—It is very important to tell people you love them and that you appreciate them and their efforts. We all need to hear this and when we do, our minds become open to new ideas.  We are motivated to reach new heights.  Acknowledge successes and never, ever follow that up with a criticism.  Otherwise you just eliminated the good feelings associated with the success.
  4. Personal Accountability—- It is very important to hold each other accountable for our promises and actions.  Holding people accountable is not being mean.  It simply is a method for not letting others allow excuses to get in the way of achieving results.  Excuses are man’s best friend in providing comfort and reasons as to why we could not do certain things.   Results, not excuses, are what produce a fulfilling and happy life.  Let’s not become enablers for failure.  Let’s help enable others to be the best they can be.
  5. Listening—Sometimes our role needs to simply be a listener.  Letting people we care about vent their feelings and frustrations.  Sometimes all people need is just to be heard and not told what to do.  Having a safe source to unload one’s burdens is critical in order to free up both physical and mental energy necessary to create better results in our lives.
  6. Encourage People to Fail—-Failure is a critical element for success.  We learn from our mistakes.  In fact all successful people fail more than they succeed.  A .300 hitter batter in baseball gets only 3 hits in 10 at bats, but is considered a superstar and makes millions of dollars. Allow people to fail.  Encourage them to fail.  I value those who fail more than those who do not fail because they are afraid to do anything that doesn’t work out.
  7. Learn from Mistakes—As leaders, we need to help those who depend on our guidance to learn from their mistakes and figure out how to do things better.  Critical in this initiative is not you telling them what to do.  But rather listening to their thought process on how they will go forward.  Leaders don’t manage actions.  They coach thought processes.  They look at how people think, identify gaps in the thinking process that need to be addressed and then help with those gaps.  This is what a leader does for long-term growth and success.

These are the seven keys I use to make a difference in my daughter’s life and with those who depend on me.  Life is about achieving and giving back to others so we can all achieve.

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