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Five One-liners From My Mentors That Will Change the Way You Do Business

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Five One-liners From My Mentors That Will Change the Way You Do Business

Have you ever had someone walk up to you and say, “You once said ‘x’ and it changed the way I think forever?” I have.

I often can’t remember saying what they remember, but I’m glad I said it. Then there are others who have said something that strongly influences me, a one-liner that I take on board so strongly that it becomes my own mantra. Those powerful messages change the way we do business. Hey, they might change the way we do life.

A few years back I signed up for the Key Person of Influence course (now called Dent Global) where I met some awesome mentors. Alongside the formal learning they offered, there was a certain incidental learning that happened when one of them said something that really stuck. Usually a one-liner. And usually, something that shook me out of a long-held belief or helped me to make a small tweak for big impact. I’m going to share five of those one-liners with you in case you can use them too. But before I do that, I want you to do this:

  • Stop whatever you are doing.
  • Pick up a pen and paper.
  • Shut your eyes and think for a moment: what are the great lessons you have learnt from others that have become your own guidance?
  • Now jot down four or five of those lessons.
  • Notice how you rely on these lessons to guide you when you make decisions and take action.

Here are mine from my Dent mentors, in no particular order:

Be prolific, not perfect. – Glen Carlson.

For a Virgo, this is a stretch. I always want things to be just right before they find their way into the world. But being prolific offers the opportunity to get whatever I’m working on out into the market to test it and get feedback, rather than it getting stuck with me while I edit and change and perfect it. This is key to entrepreneurial thinking: solve the problem by getting something to people that they need, and let them help to shape the best possible product. Thanks Glen.

Ask, ‘How can I help? – David Dugan.

This is a game-changer. At the end of any conversation, and sometimes at the beginning, check how you can help. Genuinely help. Not with the aim of getting something back. Just find out what the other person needs. What is keeping them awake at night? What can’t they do that you might be able to do for or with them? This has become so integral to my networking meetings that I notice how peeved I am when someone else doesn’t offer this common courtesy back. Collaboration is what makes stuff work. Thanks David.

Be insanely useful. – Valerie Khoo.

At a social media masterclass, Valerie Khoo said, amongst oodles of powerful advice, “Be insanely useful.” At that moment, she was being insanely useful to me about content creation and inbound marketing. It’s a simple statement, but if you take it seriously to guide your actions, it is a game changer. Thanks Valerie.

Six out of ten people should say yes. – Andrew Griffiths.

While Andrew has many, many one-liners of note, this one has shifted my whole relationship with selling. I no longer expect 100% of the people who inquire about my services to use them. In the past, I had thought that 10 out of 10 inquiries should result in people choosing my services, but I have learnt the six out of ten principle from Andrew: if six out of ten people say yes to my pitch I am pricing well. Now I’m ok when people say no. I need four out of ten to do so to let me know I’m on the right track. Thanks Andrew.

Yes, I can. – Andrew Priestley.

Perhaps the simplest of the one-liners. Andrew Priestley says that businesses often lose customers because we don’t make it clear that we can achieve the result the customer requires. If we know we can, and if we believe in our offering, we need to say clearly and without any fluff, “Yes I can.” By being clear and confident on this one, we commit to doing what is needed and letting them know we believe in our own ability to do it. Thanks Andrew.

Consider adopting any or all of these one-liners for your business right now.

While you’re about it, add one more challenge: consider, what is your own most potent one-liner? It might be useful to others, and more importantly, to yourself. Listen to that inner wisdom too.

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