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January, 2017
Welcome to YOUR newly designed and re-formatted Results Report.
TAKE ACTION. For on the clock of life or watch of winners THE key word is NOW!
Strategies and ideas for life and business, to help you maximize results!
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"Chase the vision, not the money; the money will end up following you." 
- Tony Hsieh, Zappos CEO
"The best time to plant a tree is twenty years ago. The second best time, is now." 
- Chinese proverb
"Sometimes, it is the people who no one imagines anything of, who do the things, that no one can imagine."
- from the movie: The Imitation Game

QUESTION: Jeff, unexpectedly, I got a call from a prospect who has the potential to become a significant new client. He heard about the success I was having with another industry leader.

Here's the problem, I really want to pursue this new business, but I'm concerned my current client might be offended. And this could even jeopardize future business. What do I do?

ANSWER: It's a great problem to have. And thankfully, I've had lots of experience with it.

My suggestion(s) are really more guidelines than rules. Because your decision(s) might obviously be influenced by your product, service, industry, sales cycle, purchase patterns and the types of relationships you have with clients.

However, when YOU think there's a potential conflict with a prospect, there is. And when that initial conflict starts within your mind, that's a problem.

Yet, no worries.

Because, there's an easy way to resolve it. You tell your current client about your concern. Immediately.

This strategy pro-actively eliminates the dilemma.

If at some point in the future, your client discovers the new relationship, (even if there's NOT a conflict), it could sink you. The perception might be, "That no-good, deceitful, conniving son-of-a-...snuck behind my back!"

Plus, you might be plagued daily, wondering, "What if they find out about...?!"

Now, when I suggest you "tell your current client" here's what I mean. You don't make a statement, instead, you create a dialogue.

I'll usually say something like:

"Hey, I need your help. ABC contacted me about working with their leadership and sales teams. And I wasn't comfortable with that, unless you're comfortable with it. How do you feel?" OR

"Could sure use your advice. XYZ heard about the great success we're having with clients in the (blank) industry. And they'd like me to help them too. What do you suggest I do?"

With this approach, tone and attitude, it's pretty tough for your customer or client to be disturbed. If they're like my clients, they'll be grateful. They'll really value and respect the courtesy you've extended. It's simple acts like these that identify whether you're a professional or a peddler.

Remember, partners are invaluable. Vendors are expendable.

Also, you'll quickly discover that your clients will probably say things like:

"That was really thoughtful of you to ask. No, I don't see any problem or conflict. Go for it!"

Dialogue and trust breed goodwill. And goodwill drives future opportunities.

Want to see how Jeff helped one client drive results?
Please take a peek at this video, where Chris Randall, CEO of Ultra Risk Advisors, talks about Jeff's positive and powerful impact on his team:

Since “holiday season” is still fresh in our minds and tummies, where food was plentiful, it seems to make sense, to focus on how lessons learned consuming delectable dishes or tasty treats—can actually help you prosper and profit.

If you’ve ever visited Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream, Roti Modern Mediterranean, Potbelly Sandwich Works, Labriola or meatheads, there’s a pretty good likelihood, your life, personal or professional, has already been impacted by Peter Nolan. He’s the founder of 5th P Marketing and a self-described, “Marketer, who has helped great brands develop into great businesses.”

My conversation with Peter, will give you lots of “food for thought” to develop and grow your business.

Jeff Blackman: What lessons have you learned selling/marketing “food” that are applicable to any business?

Peter Nolan: Think like a customer. This simple idea comes to life, in many not-so-simple ways. Appreciate your customer’s experience with fresh eyes. Walk through your store or business, click through your website, open your brochure—what do you see? If you knew nothing about your business, what would you think? What questions do you have? And how are these questions answered in simple, compelling ways?

JB: Your website, says, you, “…make customers sit up, listen, smile and reach for their wallets.” How do you do that, for any business?

PN: Often marketers act like the person looking for someone to dance with, at a high school dance. “If I dress right, stand in a cool way, say something witty…then he or she will want to dance with me.” That approach misses an important point: The best way to get someone to dance with you, is to be a good dancer.

When you’re really good at what you do, customers will love you. When your business is stalled or under-preforming, don’t be quick to say, “Everything we do is great, we just need to tell people about it.” Instead ask, “What can we do to WOW people so they have no choice but to return, buy and tell others?”

JB: How do you wow?

PN: Create small moments with a big heart! When I was the head of marketing at Roti Mediterranean Grill, we had a section on our website’s careers page called Above and Beyond. Here, we profiled team members who delivered outstanding service.

This inspired hourly team members to do, then tell us—about great things they did for customers. One shift supervisor, Eric, had a customer saving quarters from all fifty states for his grandson.

When Eric discovered this grandfather still needed Vermont and South Dakota, every night, Eric searched for them in the cash register. Eventually, he found, saved and gave these “valuable” quarters to the grandfather, who was blown away! Astonished, an employee at a fast casual restaurant did this. That’s how you build loyalty. Small moments, big heart!

JB: What would you encourage an individual, TO DO, to best “Market” their company, product or service?

PN: Think of your brand as a person. The “DNA” is the stuff that doesn’t change, unless you change your brand. This includes; logo, tagline, colors and fonts. Plus, your brand positioning—what you’re great at, and for whom. If your business lacks these “DNA” elements, or you’re unhappy with them, stop now. Fix them!

A brand, like a person, develops a personality. You don’t need an elaborate three-month analysis to determine your brand personality, but you do need a firm sense of this, because every brand execution, (website copy, brochures, signage, etc.) needs to be “personality consistent.”

Consider, is your brand more:

    •    Spontaneous or Careful?
    •    Modern or Traditional?
    •    Fun or Serious?
    •    Accessible or Upscale?

Then, create a Marketing Strategy, to build sales. This too, doesn’t need to be an elaborate or expensive process. Here’s my strategy analogy:

Imagine, we’re on the shoreline. Yet want to get to that distant island. How do we get there? What are potential strategies: Build a boat. Swim. Erect a bridge. Walk, (maybe the water is very shallow.)

Here, the shoreline is our “current situation.” The island is our “goal.” As you can see, we must first have a clear understanding of our situation and goal, before selecting the right strategy.

For more ways, to help you select the right strategy, please visit

Your cup of inspiration,   reflection and laughter!

For years I’ve been asked, “What’s it like?” And unfortunately, for decades, my answer hasn’t changed. It’s a topsy-turvy roller-coaster ride. A high speed churn of emotions. An unforgiving combination of exultation and exasperation. Delight and despair. Triumph and tragedy.

Yep, that’s what it’s really like, to be a lifelong, diehard, loyal, rabid, hopeful, yet often depressed fan…of the Chicago Cubs!

Up until now!

Finally, after 108 years of frustration and failure, the suffering for Cubs Nation is over. The drought is dead! The curse is kaput!

My beloved Cubbies did it! They came from behind to win it all! The Cubs are World Champions! We jumped. We yelled. We laughed. We cried.

And the average ticket for a Cubs game at Wrigley Field in 2017, has already increased by 20%! Literally, the price of success. Yet for a lifetime of memories, and the sheer joy of seeing the Cubs finally win a World Series, it'll be worth every extra penny!



A simple sign, with a simple message:



This personnel poster, clearly articulates priorities:



For a bonus dose of inspiration and knowledge, please take a peek at our latest blog post. It  features interview excerpts from my TV talk show, with fellow speaker and author, Brian Tracy.

And of course, you're welcome to become a blog subscriber too!

Coffee Break for the Mind is a trademark of Blackman & Associates, LLC

To make a submission when you see or hear something funny, quirky or offbeat, please send it to: [email protected]

MEET JEFF |Jeff helps you win BIG in today's competitive marketplace. His high-energy and high-content messages deliver immediate take-home value, growth and results for you and your team. Whether he works with you once in a dynamic keynote or once-a-month in an ongoing coaching and learning-system, he helps you drive relationships, revenue, profits, results and rewards. Jeff is singularly focused on helping you achieve and surpass your desired outcomes. And you're even protected by Jeff's incredible No-Risk Assurance.
RIGHT FOLKS, RIGHT RESULTS |What's driving current or prospective members of your team? Your salespeople? Service 
                                                    pros? And leaders? What causes them to produce, lead or loaf? What motivates them to attain, or not attain, new levels of success? What direction are they headed? Where do you want their journey to go? How valuable would it be, if you had the answers to these questions? Well now you can!
AUDIO EXCERPTS | Listen to powerful excerpts from Jeff's audio growth tools, CDs or interviews. | LISTEN NOW
"At DUKAL we have an experienced team, exposed for many years to individuals and speakers who can help us. Yet when Jeff Blackman spoke, (a half-day results-session with reinforcement), I received comments like, 'Awesome!' 'Highly impactful!' 'Learned things I never knew, even after 25 years of selling.' 'I'll now take a different direction on how I present our value and work with customers.' and much more. Jeff's attention-to-detail and fact-gathering, made him better prepared in learning about our culture and team—than any previous speaker. And it showed! I highly recommend Jeff as an impact-player who can make any individual or company better!"
Gerry LoDuca President
DUKAL Corp. July, 2016
"We engaged Jeff as our keynote speaker at our annual national sales event. We're embarking upon a challenging time in our history, and Jeff's assignment was designed to resonate and inspire. Jeff was by far, the most engaging, entertaining and thought-provoking speaker we've ever had. So much so, elements of his presentation are still reverberating, (weeks later), around our organizational communication chain, at all levels. Thanks Jeff for a job well done!"
Michael J. Kelley President & COO
Glantz Holdings, Inc. March, 2016
"My firm, a commercial insurance program management company, engaged Jeff as a sales training advisor in June, 2014. He helped us design a customized training and reinforcement system. We're extremely pleased with our significant improvement and results. That's why we have an ongoing relationship with Jeff, and I enthusiastically recommend him."
Chris Randall CEO
Ultra Risk Advisors Bellevue, WA & Atlanta
Please click the following link,
to see Chris' video testimonial:
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Thanks for being a valued member of our virtual family! Your comments and suggestions are always appreciated. And we value your feedback about our new design and format. The Results Report is read by loyal subscribers like you, in 58 countries. May it help you jumpstart January. As you succeed, soar and rock 2017! Here's to your results!
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2130 Warwick Lane • Glenview, Illinois 60026
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