Sharing the love.

In his books, Love is the killer app and The likeability factor, author and speaker Tim Sanders makes an enormous point about the importance of, in his own words: “sharing the love”.
According to Sanders, to “Share the love” means, sharing your knowledge and experience and your network with the people around you.

A concept that not only I, but the millions of people who in the last few years have become part of the conversation by writing a blog or reading and commenting on a few of these, or by creating a personal profile in a social network, or by producing or listening to different podcasts agree with. Do you up load and watch videos in YouTube? Then you too have joined the conversation.

But there is also another somewhat forgotten or better said underestimated form of connecting with people: meeting them face to face by participating in different events, workshops, conferences and seminars in which besides communicating our ideas, we can learn a lot from what others have to say too.
It’s in these occasions that the door is completely open to establish a real connection with people. You may not be able to connect with the entire audience sometimes, but be it by being a speaker, an instructor or part of the audience if you can connect with at least one person with whom you can share your experience and learn from theirs, or help him/her by putting her in touch with the right person within your network, then your day’s job is done.

I must confess that due to my job I have the enormous fortune of doing this all the time.
Just in the last to weeks alone I had the chance to collaborate with three different groups:

First, by delivering a keynote about on-line marketing at Monster.com’s global leadership conference.

Then a week later as an instructor and host of the Agency training seminar we do at Google Mexico.

And finally, as a co-host in a conference about the importance of On-line Marketing in the travel industry in Mexico.

An all three were great!

It’s really incredible the level of interaction and the dialog you can achieve when you participate at this type of events. The possibility of connecting with greatly talented people is huge and, as it frequently happens, a well leveraged opportunity will always lead to a new and better one; and the doors you open to and for others will always open both ways.

But beware though. This is not about preaching how much you know or bragging about your big list of “vip” contacts. Someone who assumes such a position is not really open to conversation and is not opening his eyes, ears, mind and heart to really listen, learn and understand what others too have to say.

And one cannot really share this way.


10 basic rules to use e-mail.

Last Friday someone made a rather nasty comment to me about people not reading their e-mail, just because I asked him where I should up load some information they had requested.
In a way I can try and understand the reason behind his sarcastic reply. It was Friday, it was very late and we had just come out of a loooong meeting that had no real reason to be. But I also was left to reflect a lot about the very poor use we have for e-mail. I mean, in a world like today, where there are up to 80,000 million e-mails and instant messages circulating daily around the world, do we really expect everybody to read every single thing we e-mail to them? We receive so many messages a day (in my case a daily average between 50 and 80 messages) that it is practically impossible to read them all or even prioritize them.

It ridiculous how we all want to establish entire conversations on e-mail and surrender to a keyboard the words, the tone, intentions and emotions that we can only transmit when we communicate face to face.

Granted, our agendas can be so busy that often, the most practical thing to do is send out an e-mail and leave it at that. And that is not entirely the problem, not as much as not really knowing how to write an e-mail can be. What I’m trying to say is, writing an e-mail is not just pressing keys that form empty words to then click on send. What’s more, how can people not give enough importance to this when up to 90% of the communication going in and out of a company is via e-mail?

That’s why after reflecting on this issue and researching and reading different articles and blogs on this matter, I’ve come to the conclusion that there are 10 very basic rules to using e-mail:

  1. The most basic of them all. Avoid sending an e-mail when you can talk face to face to the person you want to contact, especially if that person is seating less that 10 feet from where you are. You can also use the phone if that person happens to not be there at that very moment.
  2. Send e-mails to recap the agreements you made face to face or over the conference call or VC, but never try to get people to agree over e-mail.
  3. When asked, never reply with the typical and mediocre answer “well I sent him/her an e-mail”. Follow up on your messages, activate you communication and make things happen. Don’t let things die at a “I sent the e-mail”, as if this would rid you of any responsibility of the matter at hand.
  4. JBN: Just Be Nice. Yeap, Please and Thank You will also help you go a long wey on e-mail too.
  5. Avoid “Reply all’s”. Believe me, no one is interested on being copied on your “thank you” reply to the just one person. Do not do personal Spam.
  6. Try not to e-mail huge files that will only block the recipients inbox. If you need more bandwidth look for alternatives like a zip file, and FTP address or a no small size limits e-mail account service like Gmail.
  7. When looking for an immediate answer, don’t use e-mail. Pick up the phone and make the call, or you can at least use your IM instead.
  8. Please don’t send work related e-mails during the weekend and expect people to read them then. Respect people’s personal time.
  9. Keep your messages short and to the point. Again, people has too many things to do and read, so why not make their life easier with simple yet complete messages they can easily read?
  10. Always read and review your messages before clicking the send button. Make sure your message is complete and meets all your objectives, this includes recipients lists, attached files and body copy. How many times have you sent or received an e-mail saying “oops sorry I forgot the attachment” or “I’m sorry, I forgot to copy you”.

Bonus rule: Don’t forward chain letters. Do not worry; neither your hair, nor any other part of your body will fall out if you don’t forward the letter to 100 people during the following 20 minutes of reading it.

And now please don’t forget to forward this post to 20 of your friends in the next 20 minutes and you will see…how many other people get to read The daily and the not so.


Words of excellence.

Yeap I know. I’ve said this quite too many times before: “Everything we create in life we create twice; first when we think it, imagine it, fear it, resist it or dream it, and the when we experience it in real life”.

And I insist on it. So here is a practical example of what I mean: Words of Excellence.

Each time we speak, the words that come out of our mouth cross our minds first.
It doesn’t matter how fast we process our answers, we always have the opportunity to prevent what we are going to say. And the words we most frequently use are a direct reflection of who we are and how we live and experience life.Thus the importance of always using words of excellence.

Think of all the really successful people you know, not just the big business hot shots, but the teachers that influenced your life, the coaches of high performance athletes and athletes themselves, the mothers and fathers who’ve helped great personalities be who they are, the best sales reps who always exceed their quotas and have loyal clients, the artists who are most loved by their audience, the regular people you like to see the most at work, at school or at whatever activity you have.

All of them have one thing in common: they always use words of excellence that motivates and engages people around. Pessimist and negative words are not part of their vocabulary, they never answer with an “it can’t be done” but rather with a “we’ll find the way to make it possible”. They do not hide behind “victimisim”. And from their lips you will only hear positive words like excellent, great, congratulations, huge opportunity, great potential, happy, fun, greatness, yes it is possible, of course, I will be more than glad to help you!

I’m sure by now, you must have thought of more than two persons who fit this profile, they are the people we see shining on some stages, surprising us at the Olympics, motivating a whole group of professionals during a conference, changing the way people think or feel through their books; and they are also the partner you share your life with, the colleague with whom you have lunch every day or the friend you can’t miss calling every week.

And it can be us as well, as long as we form the habit of every day using words of excellence that move our life. Because, once again, every word that leaves our mouth, first crosses our mind, and what we create in our minds, sooner, rather than later, reflects directly in our life.


Never stop climbing.

We were about to start a meeting with a company that, even though its local and has 100% independent local investment, has achieved a considerable amount of success during its 20 years of existence, competing even with some of the leading global companies in its industry.
Considering all these, the meeting was very promising to us. However, their team was late and very distracted; some even seemed to have no other option but to be there. Everything would change as soon as their leader got there I thought, but it shouldn’t have resulted a big surprise to see that he got there even later than his team, interrupting the presentation my colleague was already delivering, by opening his laptop in front of everybody and starting to type and type as if the keyboard was about to be erased, only to stop to interrupt a few more times.

And as I was observing how the rest of the folks there started to follow the bad example of their (ok l I’ll say it) “successful” leader, I could not help but remind myself:

Never deceive yourself by thinking that you have reached your last mountain top. Don’t create false illusions thinking that you have gotten as high as you could ever have or done as much as you could have done.

If you find yourself in such a position react quickly and look for a new mountain top to reach.

Because it seems that once someone achieves success and reaches the top, they sit down to enjoy their success and forget to keep going.
The subtle voices of reason and the heart are drowned by the loud noise of success, so they forget to keep quiet and listen, learn and keep growing because they rather keep their bragging rights.

And just like every single thing in nature, once a person stops growing he/she starts to die.

So here’s my question to you: have you reached you mountain top yet? What is your plan for after you reach it? What will you do next? What new mountain you plan to climb then?

An important note.

The comments, opinions and recommendations posted in this personal blog are my personal thoughts, and doesn't necesarily reflect those of my employer.