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Day 16: Build Your 118 Pitch

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The 118 is the 21st century version of what people call the elevator pitch, an out-of-date name for the worthy idea that you need to sell what your company offers (and you) in the span of an elevator ride.The 118 comes from the 118 seconds you actually have to pitch: 8 secs to hook me and up to 110 secs to drive it home – less than two minutes with only seconds to spare.

I’ve been talking about the 118pitch concept for well over a year now. Do you have one yet?? Come back tomorrow if not, we’ll work on that.

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Day 15: FAST

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Focus.  Accountability.  Simplicity.  Trust. 

Fast allowed my businesses to dump outdated operating procedures and marketing models and adopt new ones that fit the current business.  Over time, it helps reshape company cultures for the better.  Even when we screwed up, we said let’s do it FAST-er! 

Change means fundamental transformation.  Yes, processes sometimes sound corny, but there is a reason they have been around forever:  they are serious business-they work.  Find one that works for you!

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Day 14: Elephants

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Imagine a company where there are no “white elephants”.  A company where everyone can raise their hand, speak honestly and talk through sticky issues.

Being direct and transparent can be risky, but it will cause less pain than “I told you so” and some finger-pointing down the road.  Change agents must not feel uncomfortable having these expectations from their employees and themselves.  It’s our job to face these tension-filled encounters and be willing to solve problems now in order to prevent future pain.

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Day 13: Positions

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It’s one thing to learn to fire yourself from the jobs you aren’t good at; it’s another things to learn to fire yourself from the jobs you’re good at but shouldn’t be doing. 

My agent, Wendy Keller of Keller Media, Inc., always tells this to her authors.  All of them are people who can market, so few of them take her marketing advice for her books:  “Sometimes they try to reinvent the wheel or do their own thing or hire the wrong people to support them, which rarely works.”  In other words, they can’t get out of their own way. 

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Day 12: Mistakes

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When I asked my friend Linda Sawyer, North American CEO of Deutsch Inc., how she inspires her team to change, she said, “The most effective way to spread and fuel inspiration with your team is by making everyone feel that part of their job description is being a change agent.” I love that. Then, Linda added that what helps her team members drive that change is her allowing them to “be fearless and not afraid of failure. If you don’t take risks, experiment, or empower people to put themselves on the line, you will never innovate, advance, or evolve.” I love that even more

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