If you’re not early for the meeting, you’re late

Some people consider lateness as a sign of disrespect. Some people don’t. Why take a chance? Always be on-time, that way you don’t offend anyone. Being on-time means being early. If you aim to be on-time, then if anything goes wrong you’ll be late. And your prospect will be disrespected. There’s only one way to…

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Give it in the belly, not the back

When you have critical feedback, don’t speak behind the person’s back. Have the guts to say it to his face. Front on. In the belly. It may be unpleasant, but it’s cleaner. And faster. And it engenders trust. People might not like your direct feedback, but they’ll respect your upfront-ness. Speaking behind people’s backs doesn’t change behavior,…

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Character is more important than reputation

Reputation is what people think you are. Character is what you really are. Don’t stress about reputation. It doesn’t matter. The only thing that matters is your character. Character is a function of integrity. Integrity is a function of values. Values are a function of behavior. The more consistent your behavior, the more solid your character….

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Just because you can’t find your partner, doesn’t mean you must change who you are

Struggling to find a business partner? After months and years of searching, and failure, it can be tempting to start faking it. Pretend to be someone that aren’t in the hope of finally finding a willing partner. Don’t. Always remain true to yourself. Go ahead and tweak what you’re offering to accommodate the market, but never change…

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Beware the whiff of desperation

On occasion, you’ll meet someone who is desperate. Desperate for customers, desperate for investors, desperate for cash. You can smell the whiff of desperation. Beware. Don’t antagonise, don’t reject. No sudden movements. Just slowly walk away. When people are desperate they can do rash things. Don’t make yourself the target of their rashness. Beware the whiff…

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When someone criticizes you, don’t react

Sometimes you’ll be forced into confrontational situations. Someone in the room will attack you, openly criticizing you. Your instinct will be to defend yourself, to contradict the criticisms. Don’t. Do nothing. Do not react at all. Nod, accept the feedback, don’t be defensive. You can’t win over everyone, especially your critics. Rather don’t react.

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You can’t fool an honest man

Has someone defrauded you? Conned you? Tricked you? Duped you? You are being dishonest. Why? Because if you were honest, you’d admit that you knew you were being fooled, but that you went ahead anyway. That little voice in your head told you to watch out, but you let fear or greed or pride over-come your better…

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Debate rather than argue

Just because you disagree with someone, doesn’t mean you need to argue. Rather adopt an open mindset. Accept the possibility that the other person may be right. Ask, “Why do you think that?” Debate rather than argue. Have a conversation rather than a fight. Its only fair to disagree once you understand the other person’s argument…

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If you don’t have options, keep moving till you do

It’s dangerous to not have options. To not have a fall-back position. To not have more than one path to choose. But it happens. When it happens, whatever you do, don’t freeze. Keep moving forward. In the darkest most depressing cul de sac, you have only one possible path: forward. You have zero chance of…

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You can’t build a reputation on what you’re going to do

So you have grand plans. Amazing ideas. Vision! So what? Your reputation is not a function of what you’re planning to to. Your reputation is a function of what you’ve done. Stop dreaming, start doing.

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Pay your taxes

It can be tempting to not pay your taxes. Especially when you need the cash. Don’t be tempted. Always pay your taxes. As your business grows, it is inevitable that you’ll pop onto the radar of the taxman. When you do, he’ll start asking questions about your history. You can’t have any history of “forgetting” to pay…

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Don’t be afraid of the awkward silence

In a sales pitch, sometimes there is a pause on the conversation where the dreaded specter of awkwardness rears its head. A pregnant pause that threatens to give birth to great embarrassment. Don’t be afraid. Silence is your friend. The more awkward, the better. Resist the urge to break it. Don’t spoil it. Use it as an opportunity…

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