November 2011

Black December

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This past Friday, retailers posted the strongest gains since 2007 as Black Friday sales rose 6.6% from just a year ago. This ability to buy is not limited to individual consumers as companies hoard piles of cash that is ready to spend on the right hires and purchases for their firms. December is primetime for buying as organizations look to reduce their tax liabilities while meeting their needs for the coming year.

Savvy salespeople will encourage corporate buyers to participate in Black December by hiring additional staff now and paying the fees and invoices before the end of the year. In addition, they will show these same buyers the benefits of prepaying for Q1 services by the 31st to reap the tax savings in 2011. By taking these actions, both parties create a December to remember as tax liabilities decrease, revenues grow, and more people are put to work.

Scott WintripBlack December
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The Uncertainty of Gratitude

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The economic crisis in Europe, an apparent stalemate over a debt deal in Washington, persistently high employment, the ongoing military conflict in Afghanistan, threats of another global recession…the list of uncertainties goes on and on. During this Thanksgiving week in the United States, it may be difficult for some to feel grateful given the current circumstances.

Uncertainty always exists, yet, with the proliferation of the 24-hour media outlets our society has become hyper-focused on the latest news, especially the bad variety. Each of us, however, still has free will, and with it we get to choose where we place our gaze. So, focus your attention this week on all that is going well and the full extent of the opportunities before you. As you do, you’ll create your own level of certainty as you make the most of all of the positive aspects of your life and your work. What a way to celebrate the meaning of Thanksgiving!

Scott WintripThe Uncertainty of Gratitude
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The Satisfaction Trap

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While gratitude for current circumstances and successes is prudent, being satisfied is incredibly dangerous for business professionals. Satisfaction becomes a trap that keeps you cemented to your doorstep and allows your competitors to grab more market share. I asked a recent workshop participant, who was resistant to ideas for enhancing her business, if she was satisfied with her current business model and she replied, “Yes!” When asked if she was also satisfied with her results, she responded sarcastically, “Well of course not, that’s why I’m here.”

Evolving your best practices to those that leverage the new economy are the only way to ensure nonstop growth and perpetual profits. When you do that, you’ll be the one looking back at your competition as they waive meekly at you from their doorstep.

Scott WintripThe Satisfaction Trap
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