Category Archives: Book Reviews

Interview with Glain Roberts-McCabe, Facilitator & Coach

Glain Roberts-McCabe

As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up?
My father always said that I came from a line of ‘teachers and preachers’. Both of my parents were teachers and, on my father’s side, everyone seemed to be a teacher of some kind at either the high school or university level. I was on a fast track to teaching until a grade 10 art teacher derailed my plans by encouraging me to become an illustrator. It took 7 years after graduating college and stints in advertising, marketing and fundraising before I found myself back on the path my father had predicted when I moved into the world of corporate training.

What was home like?
I was born in the UK and emigrated to Canada in the mid-1970’s. My father had quit teaching and taken a role with the Canadian rugby team as their technical director (essentially, their head coach). I still remember landing at the Ottawa airport and walking across the tarmac into the arrivals zone. My brothers and I raced to see my dad who had been in Canada for a few weeks finding us a home and getting things set up. We drove to our new house in, what seemed like, the world’s biggest car and ate chocolate chip ice cream before falling asleep after a marathon 16 hour travel journey.

Being the oldest of four, and the only girl of a father who was highly traditional, wasn’t the easiest. I tend to be highly independent by nature, so it wasn’t surprising that by the time I hit my teenage years, my dad and I weren’t exactly seeing eye to eye. I left home at the beginning of my grade 12 year and when I was 19, my parents and brothers moved back to England while I remained in Canada. That experience helped me build a great deal of resilience and further cemented my personal values around autonomy and independence. No wonder I ultimately became an entrepreneur!

“Did I REALLY Sign Up For This?!” was recently published. What inspired you to write?
I had been blogging about leadership for 10 years on my blog RoundtableTalk. One day, my colleague Kim suggested that I consider pulling the posts together into a book format. She felt that there were so many great words of wisdom that would have a longer shelf life in a book than they do on a blog, which tends to be a bit more ‘just in time’. I started the blog as a way to share many of the tools and techniques we use at The Roundtable, in addition to providing stories and insights from the clients that I have the opportunity to work with as well as from my own personal experience. I’m really interested in how things ‘really’ work and found that there weren’t many voices in the leadership space that were active leaders writing about the ‘good, the bad and the ugly’ of leadership. I wanted to provide something that did just that from the perspective of someone who sees themselves first and foremost as a practicing leader and business owner vs. a leadership coach.

Who or what has influenced your writing?
My first job was at The Ottawa Citizenin the Advertising Department. I loved to write and signed up to be a staff journalist for our employee newsletter. The editor of the staff paper (who was a real journalist) was always giving me a hard time about bringing too much of a conversational/personal tone to my writing. I spent many an hour trying to be more ‘neutral’, but it was a challenge. I’ve realized that this is what people appreciate about my style. In reading my work, people tell me that they feel like they’re talking to me directly. I like that. So, I guess my style was influenced by a professional journalist who I chose to ignore. (See, there’s that independence/autonomy thing coming up again!)

Is there a message in your book you want readers to grasp?
The main thing that I would like readers to take from my book is that leadership is ultimately about progress and not perfection. I often feel like leadership books are written with the view that we need to be the ‘perfect’ leader in order to be a successful leader. There is so much advice out there and my own conclusion is, to paraphrase Maya Angelou, when you know better, you can do better. Leadership is about self-insight. When you know yourself, you can lead others. In compiling the book, it was interesting to me just how much I wrote about that notion of self-discovery. Leadership development is a journey, not an event, and we need to be kind and patient with ourselves and we travel the roads ahead. I hope people see themselves in the book and feel inspired to keep trying to be a little bit better, each and every day.

Since this website is about sales & leadership, talk to us about some of your favorite blogs and websites you visit for information.
Right now I’m obsessing about neuroscience and mindfulness, so many of the places I like to haunt are in those areas. David Rock and his team at The Neuro Leadership Institute is one of my favourite consultancies for brain-based coaching and they have some excellent resources. His SCARF model is just outstanding. Marshall Goldsmith is my idol when it comes to behaviour based coaching and his Thinkers50 website is just loaded with resources that are so useful and practical. His feedforward technique is a gamechanger. Danielle Laporte and Brené Brown are both my sources for spiritual and mindful inspiration. Plus, they are great brand marketers. And finally, Gary Vee (Vaynerchuk) is the guy I go to as a salesperson and marketer to really get inspired along with Scott Scratton and his ‘Unpodcast,’ as well his material from UnMarketing. Such a brilliant book. Oh, and TED.com. Always so much inspiration there.

Finally, any advice to writers just starting?
Just start. The hardest thing for me was entering that very first blog post. It was terrifying. And then I saw the stats and only 10 people saw it. True confession… it was probably me viewing it 10 times. It will take a while to find your voice and your rhythm, but keep at it. As Seth Godin says, it’s all about shipping. Keep creating great content.

I carry around a journal where I’ll jot down ideas. Sometimes the hardest thing is to get inspired on what to write about. Tracking things as they come to you is a way to make that easier. The most challenging thing I’ve found about writing is keeping it consistent. I have friends who block the same two hours every week to write. My life (and I) tend not to work that way. I’m more of a binge writer, so knocking off a few articles and posts is easier for me to manage than trying to write at the same time every week. Do what works for you.


Bio
Glain Roberts-McCabe is Founder of the Roundtable, a place where leaders cultivate their leadership, together through group and team coaching. She is the author of Did I REALLY Sign Up for This?! #leadership truths on how to drive, survive and thrive. The Roundtable was named the top External HR Advisory/Consultancy of the Year in 2016 by the Canadian HR Awards. Visit their website at www.goroundtable.com.

Links
http://goroundtable.com
http://leadershiptruthsbook.com
http://twitter.com/heyroundtable

Interview with Hamid Safaei, Author & Coach

Author & Coach Hamid Safaei

Today, we had a chance to interview Hamid Safaei, who recently published First-Class Leadership, a manual on how highly effective teams can achieve breakthrough results. Below is an exchange between Hamid and FIND the CLIENT’s Brian Farrell about the book.

As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up?
A very good question. I always wanted to do something significant for Mother Nature and mankind. I visualized myself as the one who was inspiring thousands of people. For a very long time (until I finished my master’s and passed the exam to start a PhD program in 1997) I wanted to be a professor at university. However, my affinity with leadership and working with senior leaders changed my perspective.

What was home like?
I am the 4th child in a crowded family. My parents never went to school. My father had to work very hard and was nonstop involved in many businesses to feed 10 children. He was a farmer and urged all of us to study hard to make it to a better level than what he achieved. And he was right. My mother was very often ill and we had a challenging life. We all came short on many things, but as I and my brothers and sisters often tell each other we never came short on loving and caring for each other. And my parents did whatever they could to teach us the things that matter most. Examples were: word is word, don’t do to anyone what you don’t want others do to you, and be kind and generous to whoever comes your way.

First-Class Leadership was recently published. What inspired you to write?
On Feb. 2nd, 2015 when my wife and son were visiting my parents in Iran I had plenty of time which I usually spent on them. So, I reconnected with myself and visualized what a fulfilled Hamid would look like. Then I wrote down as my mission: By 2025 I have achieved breakthrough results in the peace process in the Middle East. I knew and still know I am one of very few who believe in such a huge thing.  I broke this down into several milestones. The first one included a 3-year plan that should lead to connecting with at least 3 world leaders and publishing two books. First-Class Leadership was my second book and Your Journey to Fulfillment was the first. Just before my deadline I achieved all parts of the first milestone. The idea of publishing First-Class Leadership was a tool via which I could connect with world leaders and top 500 CEO’s. And it works!

Who or what has influenced your writing?
My publisher Gerry Robert has had an important role in shaping First-Class Leadership as it is. Whenever I got stuck, I reached out to Gerry and he helped me out.

Is there a message in your book you want readers to grasp?
Learn to lead yourself before even trying to lead anything or anyone else. Reconnect with the deepest level of your true self, identify your biggest why, find out what you love to do, develop your vision around your passion,  set a sound strategy to bring your vision to life and then implement like hell. First-Class leadership takes your hand in every step of your journey.

Since this website is about sales & marketing, talk to us about some of your favorite blogs and websites you visit for marketing advice.
Gerry Robert is the best person I have known when it comes to marketing. I follow his advice whenever I can. Here’re his website and blog: https://blackcardbooks.com/  and http://www.gerryrobert.com/blog/

I also admire Sir Richard Branson: https://www.virgin.com/richard-branson and Bill Gates : https://www.gatesnotes.com/

And here’s the link to my own blog: http://first-class-leadership.com/blog/

Finally, any advice to writers just starting?
Don’t wait for the perfect moment to start writing. Start to write right here right now. Whenever something comes to your mind while you are not in a position to write, take a note of the idea and whatever comes to mind and save it in your notes/cellphone/email. Then explore on your notes. This is how I wrote a great part of my books.

If your audience visit my website they can download two free eBooks: http://first-class-leadership.com


About Hamid Safaei
Best known for mentoring on leadership and personal development, Hamid Safaei is a certified executive coach who helps leaders, senior managers, and budding entrepreneurs overcome their fears: Fear of being found to be incompetent, fear of failure, fear of losing everything, fear of losing beloved ones, and so on.

Hamid is passionate about helping both individuals and teams to always be at their best. He has led successful business transformations for a number of Fortune Global 500 companies. Hamid is the author of bestselling First-Class Leadership and Your Journey to Fulfillment.

He has developed ImOcean Academy, a unique institute where he applies first-class coaching tools and techniques combined with best practices. He regularly publishes learnings on www.imoceanacademy. com and www.first-class-leadership.com on subjects such as leadership, realizing goals and dreams, target setting, and bringing potential to fruition. His passion is to create a better world by and with better leaders.

His biggest dream is for peace in the Middle East, which he sees as a fundamental step for the peace on a global scale. Hamid aims to achieve breakthrough results in the peace process in the Middle East by 2025. Originally from Iran, Hamid Safaei lives in the Netherlands with his family.

Interview with Mary Poul, author of Sprint to Sales Success

Sprint cover for websiteWho did you write this book for?
The book is for sales professionals who are willing to stretch themselves to be their best and want a smart way to do it. Sprint to Sales Success came out of the hundreds of interviews I’ve done for Sales Mastery magazine.

On a weekly basis I’m interviewing top sales producers, CSOs, coaches, and experts. Obviously this is a group of high achievers. After a while I picked up on some patterns that are important for any sales professional who aspires to be their best. The high achievers have taken an uncommon approach to growing their success. But it’s something that any driven person can pick up and do. So the book is for the person who is ambitious about becoming their best in their sales career and wants to make dramatic improvements quickly.

How will they benefit from reading it?
My tease is that someone will get at least 10% better at selling as a result of doing what they learn in the book. The reality is that 10% is a lowball number. If someone started doing what they learned and used the worksheets I provide with the book, they can turn one year on the job into the equivalent of 10 years of typical experience. I’m actually confident about that claim, and here’s why.

When you think about how most of your sales peers approach their career, they learn sales skills until they are comfortable. Then they rinse and repeat those skills for the rest of their career.

In the book I recommend ways to get the biggest payoff from working with a coach. It could be a manager or a mentor. Or they could work with a professional coach. A coach’s number one job is to keep nudging you beyond your comfort zone. Human nature is to want to get cozy comfortable and stay there. A few rare people are constantly pushing themselves beyond their limits. But most of us need someone we respect and trust to give us a push and help us along the path.

Honestly not everyone has it in them to become their best. Some people are just not coachable. I share a coach-ability scale in the book and realized my moments when I’ve been un-coachable. They sound like this,

“I’m so glad we had this leadership training because my boss really needs it.”

“How am I supposed to sell more when you haven’t given us any new products?”

“That customer is such a jerk. As if I have any control over late shipments.”

Other people have been conditioned to dream within their means. This is such a tragedy for talented sales people. If you’re afraid to set scary big goals because they’re unrealistic, then you’re left with common goals. What President’s Club member have you ever met that got there by meeting common goals.

I know in your coaching work Brian you like to help people get to a big dream or goal by taking small and doable steps that add up. They want to land a big whale account and aren’t sure how to go about it. You can help them find the next yellow brick in the road instead of stressing about how on earth they are going to arrive in the Land of Oz.

I share a framework in the book that I use to create a scary-big-and-achievable sales plan. I’m a bit addicted to this framework because it’s easy to work through and the process forces me to plan how I can triple my goal and achieve it. I always end up with superior action steps compared to when I was just focused on my original goal.

What will surprise a reader?
Well it may just be me who didn’t realize this. As I was doing interviews specifically for the book, I was asking people how their coach helped them figure out their career vision. It turns out that isn’t at all what people expect their coach to help with. As a matter of fact, everyone I interviewed had figured out their vision BEFORE they worked with their coach. They may have expanded it once they began working with their coach, but they knew what they wanted to achieve before seeking out help.

The great news is if a coach knows your end game, he can help you accelerate the path to get there. I know a lot of people get stuck though on figuring out what they want to be when they’re all grown up, so to speak. So I included how to Find Your WHY in the book.

What’s your favorite part in the book?
Like you, I appreciate small, practical steps that have a wallop of an impact. This one little action at the beginning of your day can change everything for you. Even before you get out of bed in the morning, ask yourself this question,

“Who will I make 120% happier today?”

Do the full visioning with it. Imagine the person in their current state of mind. Then imagine them becoming 120% happier as a result of you. And picture them thanking you for making them that way.

This one or two minute routine puts the meaning into your work. In the Find Your WHY chapter I cover the research into what type of purpose or career vision leads to the greatest sales improvement. It turns out that having an altruistic WHY is the most powerful. That’s probably what makes the 120% happier question my favorite.

The book isn’t at all about sales skills. There are many great books I can recommend if someone is looking for help with their sales process. This book is how to accelerate your path to mastery in sales. Selling is such a challenging profession. If you chose it as your career, why wouldn’t you want to become your best at it?

MaryPoulMary Poul is publisher of SalesMasteryMag.com, which produces a monthly magazine and interviews and hosts online events. She also founded the initiative Teach Kids 2 Sell, with the ambition of teaching one million kids the life skill of effective selling. Sprint to Sales Success is available on Amazon.com and comes with bonus worksheets to make sure readers do what they learn.

Interview with Jared Kimball, Author of “14 Email Subject Line Formulas”

14-Email-Subject-Line-Formulas-book cover-340x340Today, we had a chance to interview Jared Kimball, who recently published 14 Email Subject Line Formulas. Below is an exchange between Jared and FIND the CLIENT’s Brian Farrell about the book.

Tell us about yourself, and what made you write this book?
I’ve was introduced to the world of marketing back in 2008 after I was furloughed by the airline I was working for. Yes, I used to be an airline pilot.

Back then all I knew was basic website stuff like HTML and setting up a blog with WordPress, but I didn’t have a clue when it came to marketing or marketing anything online for that matter. I just thought that if I build a website the people will come and I was wrong because nobody came to my website back in those days.

When I was furloughed I heard about this local company called Infusionsoft and I was encouraged to apply for a job there. I did apply and got the job and started out as a consultant (they’re called Coaches now).

Anyway, that job opened up my eyes to the world of online marketing, email marketing and marketing automation. I was hooked.

I started to read everything I could on marketing, copywriting, email marketing, advertising and the like. I couldn’t get enough of it.

After working at Infusionsoft for almost 2 years and helping hundreds of small businesses set up, launch and optimize their email marketing campaigns I started to get a good feel for what worked and what didn’t when it came to sending emails.

In early 2010 the airline called me and told me that I was eligible for the upcoming class in February, and I decided to go back to flying. But when I went back things had changed. The pay was reduced (pilots actually don’t make that much money for example, first year pay for pilots averages around $20,000) and the workloads were increased for all flight crew members.

In October of 2010 I decided to get out of aviation permanently, and I went right back into email marketing. At this time I was managing and running the email marketing for one of the largest travel agencies in the world. They had an email database of over 3 million registered members. These were members who paid annually to be a part of a variety of unique travel programs.

Anyway, working there I got a ton of experience writing, testing and optimizing email marketing campaigns. It was invaluable experience and I learned a lot while I was there.

Jared_Kimball

Jared Kimball

However, I was offered an opportunity to write pilot manuals on a variety of different types of aviation equipment. The contract was solid and there was plenty of work, plus I could pick up more email marketing clients at the same time so I did.

Without going into too much detail on my work background I have personally been responsible for sending, testing and optimizing millions of emails since 2008 and most of those campaigns have been mostly focused on small businesses.

As I work with more and more small businesses I realized that a lot of people started asking me about how to write better email subject lines to increase their open rates specifically and I created a couple of presentations and did a few training events, but it wasn’t enough.

People needed something more concrete. They need an easy way create subject lines without having to really think about it very much, and that’s when I decided to sit down and look back at all of my emails to figure out what were the patterns for success.

And that’s how I got the idea to write this book.

What’s your favorite subject line formula? Why?
Although it’s not as sexy sounding as the “Boost Formula” or the “Menace Formula” my favorite and most powerful formula has been the “You & I Formula.” The You & I Formula allows an email marketer, business owner to get inside the head of exactly who they are targeting for an email broadcast. But the real power of this formula is unlocked in your Marketing Automation campaigns or what some people might call an Autoresponder series.

In the You & I Formula you try to imagine what your ideal prospect is thinking about when it comes to your product or service. So if you run a pool cleaning pool you’d sit down and write out thoughts like the following:

  • Why does my pool company do a horrible job at sticking to the schedule?
  • Who’s the best company to call to clean my green pool?
  • I wonder how much a pool cleaning service costs on average?
  • Am I getting ripped off?
  • And etc.

Why this formula is so powerful is that you can literally sit down and think about the thoughts, frustrations and objections that your target prospect has on a regular basis, and when you write those thoughts into a list you know how to write your email series. Of course, you need to attempt to put down the most important or most common thoughts in the series first, but the beauty of it is that you now have a plan for action.

With those thoughts written down you can leverage the You & I Formula to help you create powerful email subject lines that really stand out to your prospects. It’s a thing of beauty when you take the time to think and write it out.

Do you find these 14 subject line formulas useful in other areas besides email, such as writing blog posts?
Yes, these email subject line formulas can be used on a variety of different areas including blog posts, direct mail pieces, display ads both online and offline. The opportunities are endless.

The book focuses mainly on creating email subject lines, but you could easily adopt the formulas for those other areas.

Anything else we should know (e.g. website, Twitter, etc.)?
Thanks for asking Brian. I give away a ton of useful marketing material, PDFs, worksheets, live training sessions and a lot more for people who subscribe to MarketerLife.com. I’d encourage anyone who’s trying to improve their marketing, email marketing, and/or sales automation should definitely sign up. People can also follow me on Twitter or like my page on Facebook if they’re interested as well.

Author, Publisher, Entrepreneur: How to Publish a Book

ape_300x250I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Guy Kawasaki in person at an Entrepreneur magazine event a few years ago. He captivated and kept hundreds of people glued to their seats, furiously typing notes on their iPads. He just delivers great information, in every medium. Most so with his books — each containing information not found elsewhere. APE just adds to the long list.

If you’ve ever thought about writing a book, get APE. It’s exactly what you need. The three sections Author, Publisher and Entrepreneur are self-explanatory and logically lay out what’s needed to write, self-publish and promote your book.

I liked the section on social media the most. You can’t make it without a network, and APE cover’s Guy’s experience with social. Other helpful topics:

  • Book editing options
  • Book covers
  • Distribution options
  • Converting your manuscript for ebooks

Don’t forget to take the SPIT, or self-publishing intelligence test: http://electricpulp.com/guykawasaki/ape/

Highly recommended, and better than a head-start — APE is a complete roadmap.