Who Is Telling Your Story

Choosing Staff

When it comes to your staff–if they’re not as passionate about your story as you, they’re not doing you any favors.

In fact, they’re lowering the bar of your business. Your value is suffering.

If you have to close your shop for a few days to find the right person to hire. Do so.

It’ll hurt you more to hire someone on a whim so you can stay open.

Worse yet is hiring someone for the long-term who isn’t excited by why your business exists.

The worst salesperson for a carpet company is the one who says that they leave their carpet at home filthy and buy the cheaper stuff from the other guys.

The worst bartender you can hire is the one who tells customers “I don’t like beer.” (Literally experienced this at what was supposed to be a stellar craft beer bar in Chicago this weekend. Think I’ll be going back? Nope.)

You don’t need to find the Miss America of staff, but you do need to find someone with a spark of care, of generosity and of passion … then help fuel it.

Just as there are customers you shouldn’t keep as customers, there’s staff you’d be better off without.


Stay Positive & We Need You To Choose Better Staff More Than You Need The Staff

Photo credit

“It’s Trending”

What's Trending

Some trends are obvious why they’re happening.

Others, not so much.

Ever wonder why Sriracha is a trending sauce?

How about why people buy a small instead of a medium when a medium is only $.05 more?

Why are more people buying record players again?

It’s important to notice trends, but the marketers and brands that excel and leverage the trends are the ones who dig deep to understand how they became a trend in the first place.

It’s about the why. Always has been.


Stay Positive & Dig Deeper

Photo credit

Our Default Way Of Reading Emails

Connecting Via Communications

Our default way to read an email is that we’re wrong.

We’ve made a mistake and someone is pointing it out.

Even when it’s a compliment, we’re hesitant to accept it.

“What do they actually want?” “Is this because I did poorly before?” “It was nothing. Really.”

Chances are its the default setting of the person you’re sending an email to, too.

Perhaps it’s time to act and shift the way we communicate to others. It needn’t be a complete 180, but putting more time to face-to-face conversations can make all the difference.

The default way of reading a communication when it’s person-to-person might still create some concern, but ultimately it feels more authentic, helpful and like you care.


Stay Positive & The Chance Of A Better Perception Makes All The Difference

Photo credit

About Your Logo

About Your Logo

Allow me to riff for a moment …

Who is the logo for? It’s certainly not for you, right? It ought to be for your target to see and feel an emotion when they do. Please remove yourself from the equation and focus on the impact your audience desires, not the impact you want to make.

How big is it? Turns out size doesn’t matter in regard to people remembering it. Although, it might help tell your story better to have a smaller logo if you’re in a niche market or a large logo if you’re a global business. The size of the logo should tell the brand story, not merely be made large so it gets noticed.

When should you redo your logo? If you’re changing your story. Otherwise what makes your logo stronger is that it’s consistent. It shows up every day. Your logo builds trust over time. I’d even push back on changing the logo when you change your story unless it’s a true 180 and your current logo has baggage.

How much are you willing to spend on a logo? The price one paid for a logo is never the story of the logo; it’s irrelevant. Have a friend who cares about your story make you one. It’s almost always nonsense to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars for a logo. Consider this: The money you spent on the logo could have been put into the business that will define how people see your logo.

I spoke to someone recently who had two designers and spent thousands of dollars on their logo. At first glance, it means nothing to anyone. They can guess the industry it involves, but beyond that, it’s everything else this business does that gives the logo meaning. The conversations they have with customers. The stories they tell on their website and packaging. The flavor of the coffee once you finally taste it.

There are so many things you could better spend your time on than a logo. By all means, be smart about it, but understand there’s a line when you’re hurting yourself more than helping your target.


Stay Positive & Next Up, Let’s Talk Brand Names (Pretty Much Read Everything Above)

Photo credit

Pleasing 90% Of Your Target

The Remarkable Map

Pleasing 90% of your audience is easy: just meet their expectations.

Due to years of being let down by one company after another, most expect a less than average experience. So, to please the majority you just need to be average. Say hello at the door, struggle to split a check, have dingy lighting.

The other 10% is exponentially tougher to please and you can’t treat them all the same. You’ll have to work twice as hard to please 5%, four times as hard to please 2.5%, eight times as hard to please 1.25% … and so on.

So you have a choice to make. Do you appeal to the masses or do you aim to raise the standard bar by making how hard and smart you work the default that pleases the 5% or the 2.5% or the 1.25%?

If you’re in a crowded market and searching for a differentiator, lowering your prices and customers’ expectations is a race to the bottom.

It’s even a worse move if you’re trying to be in the game for the long run because despite low expectations, people want better. They always have. They always will.

The brands that embrace “better” will be the ones that don’t just survive, but prosper.


Stay Positive & Ignore The Map For Average, Make The Map For Remarkable

Photo credit

As If It’s A Room

Entering A Room

You’ve heard the phrase “Leave your ego at the door,” right?

It’s great to leave things like an ego or a negative attitude outside the door.

More important though, is what you bring into the room.

A positive attitude? A hearty laugh? A determination to solve a problem?

How you enter a room changes the room for better or worse, every time.

Knowing that, what’s one to do?

Treat every place you go as if you’re entering a room (because, in a sense, you are) and bring the best energy possible (because, you have that option and we need you to).


Stay Positive & If You’re Going To Go, Go Passionately

Photo credit


Making The Transition

You know that person who has checked out of their job, but is still doing it?

Or the person who has a hobby they mingle with once every few months?

Or the partner who stays in the relationship because they think slowly backing off will make it easier on the other?

It can be easy to rationalize a slow-transition: fear of new, eases the pain for others, nothing else lined up yet, etc.

Such is often the case, our rationalizations are wrong.

Slow transitions hurt more than they help.

No one likes when the band-aid is pulled off slowly, especially if it has been there for a while.

The responsible action to take is to make a full stop, pivot and go forward on the new path; to remove the weight you’re dragging through the transition.

Ask any employer, hobby mentee and ex … They’ll always say …

“I wish they would have done it sooner.”

What’s more? They don’t say it as if they’re angry. They say it as if they’re sad–that they knew everyone would have been better off if the transition was made sooner.


Stay Positive & Letting Go Might Hurt, But It Also Helps More In The Long Run

Photo credit