23. Sep, 2019

Few people respond well to what someone else wants them to do simply because they want them to do it or because of a pep-talk.

Speeches in the heat of a moment rarely 'motivate' and if they do, it usually promotes fear of loss rather than favour of positive gain.

Recognising and accommodating ‘how’ someone else naturally behaves allows you to appropriately modify your own behaviour to encourage a more productive work-ethic for longer-term mutual benefit. The result, your business keeps more of your productive people, securing greater overall team-minded productivity.


A good producer perpetually struggles with agreement. She talks too much and doesn’t listen well. She habitually arrives late for meetings. Even some clients are telephoning to find out where she is. Though her personal productivity is in the top quartile, she is causing increasing team unrest as she invariably asks for more time to secure agreed goals and assignments.

Your Response 'A'

You confront her about perpetually wasting everyone’s time and money. You tell her you could have use your time better if only she’d had the courtesy of letting you know she was running late, again! You tell her that clients are calling the office which is not good for the business reputation. You tell her, for the sake of team morale, it might be better if she found another situation.


Your Response 'B'

You identify you are dealing with a WARM/TELLER ~ someone who is highly emotive and highly assertive ~ who represents about 30% of the tested population. You arrange to meet her at a nearby popular coffee-bar asking her to bring along her ideas about having more time to pursue her interests. At your meeting, you ask what working practices could be adopted in support of her dreams, as well as allowing her to have more fun along the way. You ask what rewards and incentives would particularly motivate her to secure agreed goals, on time.

Do you feel response 'A' or 'B' will improve overall team productivity?

Each Primary Personality is ‘wired’ with perceived positive and negative behaviour traits. Each respective group represents 10, 20, 30 or 40 people out of every 100 tested ~ which is now in the tens of millions worldwide. This means there is a 60% to 90% chance you will mis-handled someone's Primary Personality unless you rapidly identify and accommodate it!

To recruit, train and manage effective working practices, of course, demand the disciplines and skills of any given trade or profession. But to retain your people requires every man-manager adapt to the *individual personality of those they work with.

This is the aim of our Inter-personal Skills Awareness Workshop.

Email or call John on 07900 251258 to explore multiplying your business income.

*talks/group presentations require accommodating all four primary personalities in a sequence that captures  their attention and maintains interest, which is beyond the scope of this article.


17. Sep, 2019

QUESTION OF THE WEEK: What’s the difference between nervous and excitement?

When highly successful people are asked the question, "Were you nervous before ... (whatever)?", they invariably reply, "No, but I was excited!"

When comparing the bio-physical signs of nervousness with excitement, we find they are remarkably similar.

The next time you feel nervous about something, take your pulse and feel your heart rate as it climbs. Then, notice how your muscles tense, your mouth dries, and your hands feel clammy in anticipation of what’s coming. Then, the next time you feel excited about something, check your vitals again and you’ll notice the very same bio-physical responses in your body.

Both outcomes are your bodies response to the anxiety of a future significant event.

When you are nervous, you feel agitated or alarmed with negative expectations! And, when you are excited, you feel eager and enthusiastic with positive expectations [see]

Consistent performers in every kind of endeavour learn to interpret such natural stimulus as only positive: totally required for the sustained drive towards excellence ~ which is an object lesson to learn for everyone who wants to become the best they can become.

Think of it like this, training your tummy-butterflies to fly in formation towards a worthy objective must inevitably improve performance. You do this by telling yourself again and again and again that what you are feeling is eagerness and enthusiasm for what lay before you! In a word, excitement.

It is this remarkable benefit, as you prepare yourself physically and mentally for all future events by interpreting what your body is experiencing as excitement rather than nerves. It makes you want to rush forward rather than pull back, and yet it’s the very same bio-physical response.

Only you will decide how to interpret it!

To discuss this paper, email


10. Sep, 2019

Without warning a torrent of rage is suddenly pouring down on your head.

Someone is in front of you berating you and spoiling for a fight. You would like to ignore them, but this person is important in your life.

Maybe it’s your boss because you messed up. Or, your spouse who is fed up with what you did or didn’t do. Or, your dad accusing you of embarrassing him with your failures. Or, your coach blaming you for losing the game.

What’s your strategy? Try this:

Step One: “A soft answer turneth away wrath” (see Proverbs 15:1)

When anyone feels threatened, their subconscious brain dispenses hormones to flood every gland, organ and muscle to cause a re-action.  All this happens before their conscious brain has a chance to reply sensibly with considered action. Neuroscience calls this “amygdala hijack.”

In simple terms, when we do not think ~ we RE-ACT: when we think ~ we ACT.

When we re-act, our fight or flight response kicks-in. Our blood pressure rises as our heart pumps harder in anticipation of the fight or to enable us to run away. If our instinct is to fight, our subconscious mind recalls every trick and insult it has stored away just for this kind of a occasion: “How dare you talk to me like that! Wait till you hear what I have to say about you!”

But such response never placates a hostile situation because when everyone’s not thinking, no-one is thinking!

Instead, wait for a pause in the chastisement. I promise it will come. Don't respond at all until it does. Then, choose some soft questions to lighten the moment. Something that acknowledges the other person’s emotions; something to make it clear you’re not going to fight ~ or run away. Something unexpected!

Always remember, when you are the object of someone’s thought-less re-action(s), bringing calm to the situation is more about what you do not say than what you do say. You can deflect antagonism by replacing contentious comebacks with:

 “Thanks for telling me how you feel”

“I truly had no idea you felt that way”

“Can we talk it through?” 

But what if your antagonist won’t let it go? When faced with a difficult set of circumstances, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s fictional character Sherlock Holmes used his ‘Thought Palace’. When similarly faced with difficult situations we too have a thought palace! What?

Just imagine you are in your very special place; somewhere that makes you feel peaceful inside; somewhere away from distraction. A place you can contemplate any problem, any obstacle, which could be a Caribbean beach or a country riverside walk, even a public library. Anywhere that allows you to find quiet peace of mind. Breath slow and deep whilst maintaining eye contact with your antagonist. A slight tilt of the head suggests non-aggression, too.

This may take a little practice, but it can truly calm down even the most intense situation. The point is, if someone is spoiling for a fight and you won’t fight back, they have zero satisfaction to continue and their re-action will pass-by more quickly because you have not fuelled their negative emotions.

What if they won’t let it go?

Step Two: “A broken spirit drieth the bones” (see Proverbs 17:22)

So, the shouting has subsided, but they are still in your face. So, how do you sap the remains of their anger and get them back to talking with you, not at you?

The answer is to make yourself less significant than them, which sounds counter-intuitive.

For example, the difference between a Diplomat and a Politician is diplomacy! If you’ve ever watched televised British Parliament or the Americaln Senate in action, there is a marked absence of diplomacy as one poitician attacks another. I guess this behaviour is supposed to convince voters they picked the right party? Weird!

Diplomacy works more often than it does not. Seeking first to understand before stating your position quietly and without emotion acknowledges the other person’s right to ‘feel’ the way they feel, without demeaning yourself or making you feel at fault when you are not.

Say something like:

“Have I done/said something to upset you?”

“I really need to understand your position”

“I apologise for not always being at the top of my game, and I do want to get better”

Step two helps deflate the situation further, but if they are still not willing to talk things through, you’ll need more than the absence of anger. You’ll need some sort of affinity.

Step Three: “As in water face answereth to face, so the heart of man to man” (see Proverbs 27:19)

Founded upon the people who raise us, everyone's primary personality is established by our 5th birthday. Research reveals 4-in-10 of the tested population tend to square up when threatened and 6-in-10 back-off! Whilst, either response may be appropriate in a life-threatening situation neither is conducive to a mutually beneficial outcome most of the time! It may sound trite but sincerely smiling at step three more often than not encourages our antagonist to do the same (mirroring).

Of course, it can be hard to offer that first smile. There has to be some mutually beneficial outcome you can visualise to encourage the other person to imagine it, too. Remember, even the most difficult person has redeeming qualities. So, seek out those qualities, focus on them and forget all the other stuff.

As soon as you awaken good-thinking about this person, they will begin to co-respond. This is a natural human response and especially true when you display good-feelings through your words and your body language.

Perfect Practice Makes Perfect

When you maintain your dignity, especially when another is losing theirs, you dramatically lessen the time required to heal the situation for a mutually beneficial outcome. When you step forward with genuine resolution in your heart, the other person must co-respond. It’s as simple as that!

So, the next time someone wants to pick a fight, don’t be a ‘Politician’, be a ‘Diplomat’. Maintain your self-respect returning flowers, not fists. Remain genuinely concerned about the other persons concern(s). Focus on what you like about this person. Use gentle questioning (see above) and sincerely smile.

Rehearse this with a few trusted friends. Ask them what they think. Then email to tell us how it worked for you.

31. Aug, 2019

No one makes you feel the way you feel without your consent!

A universal law states the, “… magnetic power of the universe draws similar energies together. It manifests through the power of creation ... This law attracts thoughts, ideas, people, situations and circumstance.” [underlines added]

What we think is what we get is the Law of Attraction in action. It translates into what we think about most of the time is exactly what we can expect most of the time.

In the late Stephen R. Covey excellent book, ‘The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People’, he wrote “… building strong relationships not only require a character foundation of inner security … and personal moral authority, but also involves stretching ourselves in developing vital inter-personal skills …”

The principle of inner security and moral authority begins with building a core-value of not consenting to someone else owning the way you feel!

Core-values fuel the way we feel, which in turn energise every thoughtful action or un-thoughtful reaction we take.

Original core-values are established in childhood, when we are totally dependent on others for our every need. Core-values can be favourable or antagonistic, engendering happy memories or otherwise and can help or hold-back life’s progression.

Antagonistic core-values remain within us unless and until we choose to change them for favourable ones. You choose to replace unhelpful values with helpful one’s ~ or you don’t!

There are many accounts of people who overcame discouraging and even life-threatening circumstances by refusing to give their consent to their antagonists. And, if you haven’t read Viktor E. Frankl’s good book, ‘Man’s Search for Meaning’, I commend it to you.

No-one makes me feel the way I feel without my consent!

So, the next time you feel like responding to someone with antagonism ~ stop! And, ask yourself what that person is really trying to convey to you. Then ask yourself if feeling antagonistic or favourable is going to evoke a better outcome. And, should you then disagree with what is being said ~ do so agreeably.

No-one makes you feel the way you feel without your consent!

In Rhonda Byrne's good book “The Magic” she writes, “When there is some kind of sickness or condition in your body, it is understandable that you may have negative feelings about it…but having negative feelings about sickness does not restore health. In fact, it has the opposite effect…”.

What You Think Is What You Get!

Email to discuss this paper.

21. Aug, 2019

Why do some people and some businesses grow from strength-to-strength whilst others languish and fail? 

The paradigm of winning in private before winning in public is fundamental to all on-going high success and growth.

Last week we explored the three key-components of getting yourself ‘fit’ to work effectively in the public arena: your Private Victory (see previous BLOG).

This week, in PART 2, we examine the three key-components that secure working with and through others viz. your Public Victory.

PART 2) Public Victory

All family and most work success are accomplished with and through other people. Public Victory then, is the teamwork and the 1-on-1 situation you find yourself within. Public Victories are always built on Private Victories.

Public Victory is about finding mutual grounds for progress. It’s about asking problem-centred questions that lead to mutually beneficial outcomes. It’s about encouraging everyone to identify for themselves the current situation and what they/we want to do about it. 

We see the result of failing to achieve this when meetings dissolve into hostile disagreement. We see failure when the client says 'No' to you and then goes out and buys from someone else.

The following are the 3-key Public Victory components that secure working with and through others:

1)    Too many people think in terms of winners and losers. But what if everyone could feel they are a winner? What if everyone felt good about being with you? Stephen R. Covey calls this, “Win/Win or No-Deal”.

Working with an abundance mentality changes how you hear what is being said. Rather than feeling inferior or superior, you will feel you stand on level ground. This is achieved by helping others verbalise what they want and how to go about getting it with and through you. And, if you can't agree, don’t be afraid to say No Thanks. It's not for me.

2)    Have you ever not heard what someone has just said? Most breakdown in communication is because you are thinking about what you want to say rather than listening to what is being said. Active listening takes practice; a lot of practice. But the yield in mutually beneficial outcome is exponential to your effort. Try it and see. Stephen calls this, ”Seek First To Understand, Then To Be Understood”.

Most people want to get their point across early in the conversation but in so doing may alienate the other people involved. This is not a good way to win friends and influence people! And, pretending to listen only transmits that you are not really listening at all. Say goodbye to that situation!

3)    To problem solve from multiple points of view can be a truly creative process that leads to innovation. And, when the sum total is more than the constituent parts, you know everyone is going to win, big. This is teamwork at its best. Component 3) is where components 1) & 2) above are applied to mutually discover what might be possible. During this process of mutual discovery anything goes ~ no matter how absurd it may sound. Stephen calls this “Synergise”.

And, if you’re thinking this sounds like compromise, you’re off-track! Compromise is a lose/lose outcome when everyone sacrifices something to appease everyone else. Applying component 3) is when you temporarily disguard what is already known and start again. Think how Leonaro da Vinci came up with that wacky idea of manned-flight. Or, H. G. Wells when he came up with a first-man-on-the-moon nonsense, and you’ll begin to see what possibility thinking is all about.

To open your conversation about how to energise yourself and your team in the Public Arena, email!

Complicated Is Easy! Simple Is Hard!