What Do You Really Want?

I want to offer you an exercise. It’s one that I have done a number of times, always right before a breakthrough. It’s one I am keen to repeat with a greater frequency than I have in the past.
what do you really wantMost of us don’t spend enough time deciding what we really want. We are too busy living to spend time deciding what living means, or how to do so in way that is in line with our definition of success, happiness, a good life, and a life well lived.

You cannot decide what you want by looking at your task list. The things that you have told yourself you must do have very little to do with what you want. In fact, just looking at all things that sit undone can cause you to believe that these are the things that you should be doing. If you can die happily with a task left undone and unaddressed, you can live happily with it undone and unaddressed.

You also can’t decide what you want by looking at your projects, your short term goals, or the many roles you play. Unless the project is “my life,” it’s just a collection of tasks. Short term goals are important, but they’re likely just milestones on the way to something bigger. But what “something bigger” is that?

To answer the question, “What do I want,” you have to move up to the highest vantage point available to you, a place where you can see further, a view with the greatest perspective. From that higher place, you can answer the question, “What do I want?”

To live a life of purpose and meaning, you have to supply that purpose and that meaning. You have to decide why you are here and what you are going to do with your time. Your life belongs to you alone. This fact is easy to forget when you don’t spend the necessary time to decide what you want, and when you end up living a life that it at odds with the life you see in your mind—and what you feel in your heart.

If the idea of “what you want” seems nebulous to you, that is my intention. I have no idea what you really want. No one else does either. This is something you have to decide for yourself, even if it is one of the most difficult questions you have to answer.

If you want to know what you really want, go some place quiet, where you can be alone. Make that quiet place outdoors, if you can. Write down the answer to the question, “What do I want?” Just write without having to be right. Explore what you surface and decide what it means for you. What you come up with probably fall into the categories of being more, doing more, having more, and contributing more.

Once you know what you want, you can start to build the plans to achieve it.

Comment to send me your thoughts, ideas, and stories. Hit forward to send this newsletter to someone you know who could benefit from deciding what they want. Ask them to join us here each Sunday by signing up at

Do good work this week, and I’ll see you back here next week!

Anthony Iannarino

P.S. I have 15 seats left for Sales 3.0 on September 18th and 19th in Las Vegas. I am speaking at 8:45 AM on Tuesday the 19th. Click here to request one of the remaining tickets: 



Contributor Anthony Lannarino is an entrepreneur, speaker, author, and consultant. He writes daily at and you can subscribe to his newsletter at

Oil and Gas Keynote Speaker. How to Do it Right

How to be a valuable oil and gas keynote speaker.

Okay. Oil and gas keynote speaker, how to do it right. If you’re giving an oil and gas keynote speaker, a couple of things that you need to do to make sure that you nail it. That you give good value for the people that are paying you speak.

First thing, understand the purpose of the event. Why are they putting the event on? Is it a conference? Is it an expo? Is it an educational seminar? Is it internal? Is it external? Why are they doing it? Is it team building? Are they trying to pass on some type of new messaging? Is the company going through a merger or acquisition? Do they have a new product or service? Whatever it is without understanding the purpose of that event, you actually can’t build a good keynote and deliver high value.

Once you understand the purpose of that event, do a very deep dive into the expected audience. Learn who’s going to be there, their titles, their roles, their positions. If it’s a big conference, what is the conference theme? What’s the conference about? Who typically attends the conference? If you are doing a conference or expo, talk to the promoters of the conference. They can help you understand exactly who that audience is. But you have to understand who that exact audience is, so that you can tell a good and valuable story to them.

Oil and Gas Keynote speaker – Stop the Slides

Then here’s a big one for me and everybody else out there that speaks professionally. Stop the slides! The PowerPoint decks with all the texts and the spreadsheets, and all that sort of stuff. You need to tell a story. If you have a deck, pictures are great way to accomplish that story. Think about the TED Talks you see. How often do you see them putting up Excel spreadsheets? You never see that. If you need to put up a graph, make it simple and easy to understand. The focus needs to be on you, the oil and gas keynote speaker. Not on what you have going on behind you on a screen.

Next be entertaining but be careful. If you have too much entertainment or too much humor in the wrong place, it can be deadly when you’re doing an oil and gas keynote speech. Humor is what lubricates the story, it doesn’t replace the story. The story is the most important thing.

And then pacing is more important than length. If you go too fast, people can’t keep up and pay attention. So they lose track. If you go too slow, you put people to sleep. A good keynote can be anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour, but the pace is way more important than the length.

You Must be a Good Storyteller

The next one is huge. You have to be a good storyteller AND  you have to tell real stories. So you have to tell real stories that involved you or the people around you, that fit into what you’re trying to accomplish as an oil and gas keynote speaker. You have to be a good storyteller. There’s a lot of stuff out there to help, online courses, books, classes and some really good blog posts. There’s a lot of really good stuff to teach you how to be a storyteller, but you have to be a storyteller first and foremost. And you have to use real stories if you want to be an oil and gas keynote speaker.

Next you have to connect with your audience. I’m doing it right now. I’m talking to you about stuff that’s important, stuff that you have an interest in, I’m giving you some real value. I am connecting with my audience even though this is on video. It’s even more important when you do it in person. You have to connect with the audience. If you connect with your audience, you feel it the audience feels it. They go along with you for the ride that you’re bringing them on, as you tell the story.

Here’s another real big one for us. You have to be genuine. If somebody asked you to do a keynote that you can’t do effectively, you need to tell them “I can’t do that keynote”. If you came to me and said “Mark, I want you to do a keynote speech on electrical distribution”, I would tell you No. I can’t do a good keynote around that, because I don’t know that world at all. My world is oil and gas. So you have to be genuine.

You Must use Social to be an Oil and Gas Keynote Speaker

Then in today’s world if you’re going to be a good oil and gas keynote speaker, you have to use social. You have to use social to promote the event ahead of time, which is what you’re being paid to do. You have to use it during the event. There are all kinds of ways, think of all the different platforms Periscope, Facebook, Facebook Live, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube. All that stuff helps build a buzz for both you and your speaking career. And for the event that you’re helping with your keynote, so you have to be involved with social media.Oil and Gas Keynote Speaker

If you struggle with that find somebody who can help you with it. That will amplify your ability to tell a good story…immensely. You know if you have a Periscope or Facebook Live going in front of an audience of a thousand people in person, you may be actually doing a keynote in front of 6,000 or 8,000 people. Think how huge it is and how impactful it is.

Finally when you’re finished, you have to leave the audience feeling good. And that can be two or three different things. Did you tell a good heartfelt emotional story that made them feel good? The kind of Rocky thing where you pumped them up. Did you give them some valuable and useful information and they walked out and say “Wow I didn’t know that, and this is something I can actually use”. Regardless of how you do it, you have to end your keynote leaving the audience feeling good.

Please Share

Now, do me a favor. If you found this valuable, can you share this on social media? There are some buttons either to my left or right below me where you can just click. This helps us get our story out to more people so that more people get the benefit of what we’re trying to do.

So, folks I hope this helped. You may want to also check out Oil and Gas Speaker. How to Choose the Right One

You Don’t Win on Paper

This isn’t really about boxing. It’s about how a smaller, weaker competitor uses intangibles to beat a larger, stronger opponent, one of my very favorite things. With all apologies to my MMA-loving friends.

You don't win on paper

McGregor is eleven years younger than Mayweather. He is an inch taller, and he weighed 20 pounds more than Mayweather when the bell rang to start the fight. There is no question that he was the bigger, stronger fighter, as well as having a two inch advantage when it comes to reach. He has an intensity as a competitor that is second to none, an indomitable mindset.

On paper, McGregor had all of the advantages but one: His opponent was an undefeated prize fighter with a 49-0 record, and who has only fought championship fights since he was 21 years old.

How does an older, smaller, weaker opponent beat the younger, bigger, and stronger opponent? With experience and skills.

Skill Sets

In The Only Sales Guide, I wrote that one needs mind set, skill sets, and tool kits to succeed in sales (or any other endeavor).

Boxing is a set of skills that, like all martial arts, was designed to allow a smaller, weaker opponent with a certain set of skills to beat a bigger, stronger opponent. Possessing these skills creates an asymmetry, causing the person who lacks the skills to be at a disadvantage, even if they are big, strong, and tough.

A salesperson with better skills beats a salesperson with what appear to be advantages on paper. This is why you can lose while having the best product, the best pricing, and the best ROI.

These skills are changing, and knowing how to sell effectively now is the difference between success and failure, and it is why I write so much about commtiment-gaining, business acumen, and the ability to lead change.


Young McGregor is a tough fighter. He has had the experiences that allow him to win in Mixed Martial Arts contests. But he gave up traditional boxing when he was 17 years old, where he had only fought amateur boxers. MMA, like all combat sports, is brutal. But his contest with Mayweather was in a boxing ring, and under boxing rules.

In German, there is a word that translates to “fingertip feel.” The word is “fingerspitzengefuhl.” It means a situational awareness that allows the person who possesses it to intuit things and respond appropriately. You know when someone has it because it looks like magic, like things are moving slower for them, that they have the ability to see the future. The ability to discern what they are really seeing and make distinctions based on a deep set of experiences provides a competitive advantage over those who lack this ability.

Experience gives you this ability. It comes from intentionally trying new and different things as you learn to discern the patterns. Having 49 professional fights, dozens of them championship fights, provides fingerspitzengefuhl.

It isn’t very likely that your product is not your problem. Nor is it likely that your pricing is to blame for the challenges you have selling. It’s more likely that it is mind set or skill sets.

Your skills and experiences are intangibles. They don’t show up on paper, yet they create a competitive mismatch that allows for someone who appears to be at a disadvantage to win.

What are you doing about the intangible that allow you to win?

Hit reply to send me your thoughts, ideas, and stories. Hit forward to send this newsletter to someone you know who could benefit from thinking about creating a competitive mismatch. Ask them to join us here each Sunday by signing up at

Do good work this week, and I’ll see you back here next week!

Anthony Iannarino

P.S. If you want to develop one skill that will provide you with a competitive advantage, I would suggest that skill is controlling the process by gaining commitments. The Lost Art of Closing: Winning the 10 Commitments That Drive Saleswill provide you with the blueprint. Send me your receipt to join the Facebook Mastermind Coaching Group, starting up next weekend.

P.P.S. Here is my tweeted prediction from 3:30 PM ET yesterday. Missed it by about half a round.

You don't win on paper


Contributor Anthony Lannarino is an entrepreneur, speaker, author, and consultant. He writes daily at and you can subscribe to his newsletter at

How to Stop Creating Your Own Stress

For the last five or so years, I have been practicing a form of mindfulness meditation. Most of the time, I was “doing it wrong,” even though there a good many people who will tell you that because you are not pursuing any goal, that you cannot do mediation wrong. Leave it to me to find a way.

Creating Your Own StressI have focused only on my breath while meditating, and I have gained an ability to have absolutely nothing on my mind. I mean very literally nothing. I thought this was the goal of mediation, to quiet the mind. And in some ways, this is true.

About 6 months ago, I met with a Zen Master, someone who has literally sat on a cushion and meditated for hours a day for around 45 years (the first 30 of which he believes was very poorly done, so there is that). During our meeting, he explained to me that I was doing the prepartion work for meditiation without meditating. He suggested that I spend my time in mediation noticing my thoughts, my feelings, and anything going on in my body. At his direction, I started to practice this. Like you, there is a lot going on up there.

The trick is to observe what’s going on, without chasing every thought or feeling down every rabbit hole your mind conjures up for you. What happens to those who do this sort of meditation (or contemplative prayer, which exists in some form in every religious tradition), is that you start gain some distance from your thoughts and emotions, as they start becoming objects, making you no longer the subject. It creates a distance.

And here is an example of a small breakthrough, of which I have had many. Last week, I filled my car with gas, and I paid for a car wash at the pump. When I finished filling the last tank, I waited for the receipt that I needed to drive through the station’s car wash. That receipt, however, did not appear.

My mind decided that this was a crime against humanity: “If you want people to pay at the pump, why wouldn’t you keep paper in the machines?” It continued, “Why do I have to walk in and get the receipt?” I had decided to be frustrated.

Just then, I noticed that I had decided to cause my own suffering, and I stopped. I thought “Why wear a watch that counts your steps and then not take those steps?” I guessed it was 21 steps into the station, and 21 back, which made it ridiculous that I would choose to be frustrated over something so small and meaningless. I walked in, politely asked the clerk for the receipt for pump 14, and walked back to my car. That took all of a minute and half, if that.

The voice in your head is the primary cause of your suffering, even if you describe the emotional state as stress, anger, frustration, or some other derivation, it is really you suffering. Maybe your voice tells you not to make the call, that you are only going to be rejected, in which case you already feeling something, even though nothing has actually happened to you. Or perhaps you tell yourself that the fact that your operations team is struggling and that you have to deal with the problems they create makes you angry and upset. Whatever is going on upstairs, a highly charged emotional state isn’t likely to help you produce better results. In fact, it is more likely it makes you less effective.

Here’s the rub: You don’t have to make things worse in your mind than they really are, and not doing so can make you far more effective in dealing with the issues, problems, and challenges of your daily life. You can minimize the stress you create for yourself, and you are most certainly its creator.

How are you causing stress and suffering in your own mind?

Comment to send me your thoughts, ideas, and stories. Hit forward to send this newsletter to someone you know who could benefit from a little perspective on what they are conjuring up in their mind. Ask them to join us here each Sunday by signing up at

Do good work this week, and I’ll see you back here next week!

Anthony Iannarino

P.S. Thanks so much for all the support with The Lost Art of Closing. We’ve had a killer first couple of weeks. If you haven’t checked it out because you have some preconceived notion of what’s in the book, please read this review.



Contributor Anthony Lannarino is an entrepreneur, speaker, author, and consultant. He writes daily at and you can subscribe to his newsletter at

Oil and Gas Experts. 5 Ways to Pick Out the Best

When you need Oil and Gas experts.

Oil and gas experts, five ways to pick out the best. If you’re looking for  an oil and gas experts, there’s a reason and usually that means there’s a problem. Typically a business problem that you can’t solve yourself or maybe you want a different way to solve it. So you need oil and gas experts to come in and help you.

There’s a lot of people out there that claim to be experts on a lot of different things, especially in our industry. But we’ve learned over the years there’s basically five traits that you need to look for, to help you pick out the oil and gas experts that you need.

Oil and Gas Experts Must Have Experience

Number one, experience. There is nothing that can replace hands on experience. Nothing that can replace years and years of doing the same thing over and over again and doing it well. That hands on, executable, rubber hit the road experience is  so valuable. And if the person you’re talking to doesn’t have that experience, go somewhere else.

Now that experience leads us to our next thing, knowledge. A lot of different things make up knowledge. Knowledge is formal education, knowledge is self-taught. Knowledge is things like networking and seminars and traveling and being open-minded. That book of knowledge is all of the tools that your oil and gas expert needs in their tool box. That they then will use in combination with their experience. Either one of them by themselves may give you some street cred, but those two together is the cornerstone of being an oil and gas expert.

Risk Tolerance

Risk for Oil and Gas ExpertsThen, here’s a big one. Our oil and gas industry has very little risk tolerance, and rightly so. Because when we make mistakes horrible things happen, but your oil and gas expert has to have fundamental grasp on his own or her own risk tolerance.  There’s an old saying in business systems that nobody ever gets fired for hiring IBM or SAP. Which is true.

But I’m telling you there’s a whole bunch of companies out there that go out of business because they made the wrong decision. They went down that route of only buying from the big companies. So there’s a balance there, what is the right thing to do, what is the safe thing to do, where is the middle ground? If your oil and gas experts do not have a good grasp on what their own risk tolerance is, they can’t help you make good impactful business decisions.

Creativity. Essential for an Oil and Gas Expert

And here’s one you may have never thought of, creativity. You have to be creative as our industry is facing new issues, new problems, new talent sources, new workforce, new government regulations, new geopolitical risks and new technologies. So the old ways of solving business problems aren’t always applicable anymore. Which means your expert has to have creativity. If they only want to solve problems they way they always have in the past, that won’t be useful anymore. Can he or she take their knowledge, experience, and risk tolerance and combine that with creativity to solve problems? In a way that is more productive and with a larger financially benefit?

Intuition. Hard to Measure but Super Valuable

And then intuition. The intuition thing is hard to measure, that’s your sixth sense.  It’s something that is hard to quantify and it’s not something based upon your formal education. Instead it’s based upon years of doing the same thing, and then your hunches or intuition starts helping you make the right business decisions.

We have this happened to us all the time. I’ll walk into a new company that either asked me to speak or asked me to come in and help them  solve a business issue they’re dealing with. And within ten or fifteen minutes of talking to their executives and leaders, my intuition kicks in and starts pointing me toward the problem. And the thing I think is so cool about this is, a lot of times it’s not something I am consciously aware of. And it’s also not something they’re aware of at all. Because they’re in that company, that world and they don’t see the true root cause of the problem. They see it as something else. So intuition is super, super valuable, but that intuition you only get after years of working in this industry.

There you go, five ways to help pick up the best oil and gas expert; experience, knowledge, risk tolerance, creativity, and intuition.

So, hopefully you found this valuable. If you did, can you please take three seconds to click the social share buttons here and help us share this blog post?

Folks I hope this helped. We will see you next time.

Oh, and you may want to also check out Oil and Gas Expert. 10 Ways to Become One

TIBCO Energy Forum. You Need to Go!

On our must attend list, the TIBCO Energy Forum.

Click here to learn more about this great event.

Mark: Hey, folks let’s learn something new about the oil and gas industry.

All right. The three of us just could not get into the same town at the same time, so we’re doing this via Skype. I got Michael O’Connell and Kim Hightower here with TIBCO.

How are y’all doing today?

Michael: Great.

Kim: Thanks for having us.

Mark: Yeah. And, Kim you like you’re in car?

Kim: I am in a car. I’m always in a car or an office.

Mark: That’s the world we live in now. So, y’all have an even coming up that we go to every year that we find fascinating. It’s the TIBCO Energy Forum. Let’s talk a little bit what that is.

Michael: Sure thing. Well, we’ve got a terrific program this year. Kim and I have been rounding out folks from all across the energy sector. We’ve got folks – we got a business track with Apache and NRG and Linn Energy talking about these operations and project economics. We’ve got an abstract, we’ve got a tech track. Basically got – what is it, Kim, twelve customer speakers?

Kim: We do. Yes. And holistically it’s a great gathering place for all of our customers. We’ve got, you know, lots of the – the big oil companies are, you know, sending dozens if not more than that, you know, customers to the event where they can talk to others about use cases that we’ve got fourteen or so sponsors, companies that sponsor our TIBCO Energy Forum and talk to customers about what they have going on as well.

Big Oil and Energy Companies will be Here

Mark: And what’s cool about this is if people don’t understand who TIBCO is. Everybody’s heard the name Spotfire, right? Y’all are the leader in big data analytics and our industry as a whole has always been a big data industry, but it’s only lately like last five years or so that they started realizing the business value of mining that data. And that’s what y’all do, y’all help companies like oil and gas companies mine that data to derive good business results.

Michael: Absolutely. We’ve got in addition to that business track I was talking about, we’ve got a tech track which feature some of those big data methods, Mark.

So, we’ve got XTO and Exxon speaking about the Spotfire with Hadoop and geospatial analytics. We’ve got Chevron talking about Spotfire for performance in on conventional. We’ve got BP talking about smart decline curves. So, yeah, big data analytics across the board in the tech track as well as the abstract, business track.

TIBCO Energy ForumAnd, Kim I think one of our big sponsors is a big data application as well, right?

Kim: Yeah. MongoDB is a NoSQL database. They are our platinum sponsor at TIBCO Energy Forum and will be giving a big data use case on the main stage this year. Our first day is really all customer presentations talking about different use cases and analytics across the oil and gas industry – across the energy industry actually. We’ve got an energy, we’ve got a big utility as well.

The second day is an end user forum where we’ve got a hackathon and some training available as well.

Mark: Yeah. Big shoutout to Theo over there at MongoDB. I’ve known him for a long time. We’re going to be out there as well.

So, when in the TIBCO Energy Forum?

TIBCO Energy Forum is September 6th and 7th, 2017

Kim: September 6th and 7th. And typically we have two types of attendees. We’ve got the executive level attendees who attend just the first day for all the customer presentations and gatherings. And then, the end user or the analyst, the engineers typically attend both days so that they can take advantage of the training and the hackathon as well.

Mark: Yeah. And, we’re bringing a podcast. We will be there live. What is so cool about this, this isn’t academia, right? So, if you’re in this big data world or even curious about this big data world, this is real people in oil and gas, real users talking about real use cases. This type of information is so valuable, it’s actually really rare.

We love the TIBCO Energy Forum. We’re going to be there. If you have an interest at all, where should they go, Michael if they want to find out more about the energy forum?

Michael: Well, just go to just right there on the main page we got a link into the energy forum, you can register for the event. We’d love to see you there on September 6th and 7th. As Kim mentioned we got a business track, we’ve got tech track, we’ve got hands on hackathon whether you’re an executive, a manager, a hands on user, there’s going to  just, you know, eight hundred – eight hundred plus Spotfire enthusiasts there speaking about analyzing data for two days. It’s going to be great.

Mark: It is going to be great. And. We’ll stick a link in the show notes so you can just click, you don’t have to be writing everything down.

Well, Michael and Kim thank you very much for your time today.

Kim: Excellent. Thank you very much.

Michael: Thank you.

Mark: So, folks I hope this helped. We will see you next time.

Oil and Gas Speaker. How to Choose the Right One

Finding the right Oil and Gas Speaker can be a challenge, so we decided to help.

Oil and gas speaker, how do you choose the right one? If you’re going to hire an oil and gas speaker for your event, conference, expo or your meeting, you need to make sure you’re hiring the right person. You have a lot of people dependent on you making the right decisions, and we are going to give you some guidelines.


We will talk you through the things that you need to look for when you’re hiring an oil and gas speaker. The first one? What is the goal of the event that you’re putting on? Is this is a team building exercise? Are you trying to educate an audience? Is this a conference where you’re trying to showcase a new product or a new idea? Until you understand what is the goal of the event, you really can’t even begin to start choosing the speaker.


What is Your Oil and Gas Speaker Budget

Then, this is a big one. What is your oil and gas speaker budget? The range that you pay for people to speak in oil and gas events can go from literally zero for somebody who’s just getting started to maybe $20,000 or $30,000. Without knowing your budget, you don’t know how to be able to narrow that field of people that can help you accomplish your goals.


Then, what type of speaker will make your event successful? An industry expert. Or an oil and gas industry expert speaker, such as me. A celebrity speaker, such as Mark Zuckerberg or an athlete speaker, such as George Foreman. There are professional speakers, or internal speakers. Without understanding what type of speaker you need to make the event successful, you won’t be able to figure out who actually need. And each one of those types of speakers brings a different strength and a different purpose to your event.

Oil and Gas Speaker

Next what is the message you’re trying to convey? So if you’re talking about product launch, that’s one type of message. If you’re talking about some changes that your company is going through, that’s another type of message. Or if you’re trying to motivate a part of your company or a team, that’s another type of message and certain speakers are better off at delivering certain types of messages. So if you want an oil and gas speaker, what is the message that you’re trying to convey?


What is the Make-Up of Your Audience

And then what is the make-up of your audience? So in a conference or expo you have a bunch of people from all ages from all different backgrounds walking the floor. Are you trying to capture their attention? Or are you trying to educate them? Is this an internal audience? Or is this a bunch of your senior leadership? Are they new hires? Or a bunch of young professionals? Maybe even a bunch of Oil and Gas entrepreneurs? Without understanding the make-up of your audience, you can’t find the right person who can help you communicate the message you’re trying to convey to that audience.


Next what type of event is it? The type of speaker that’s successful in a live outdoor event is really radically different than a type of speaker that’s successful in a small 10 to 12 person internal event.  One of them is very good at pumping up an audience, reading the energy and getting everything’s going. The other one is really good at connecting one-on-one with those individuals out there. So you have to understand what type of event it is.


Shortlist your Oil and Gas Speakers

Once you have all these figured out because we live in 2017, you should be at the point be able to shortlist your potential speakers. Go check them out online. Every professional speaker I know including us, has at least a YouTube channel if not a website. And usually everything is published on all types of social media. Go pay attention, go watch them speak, listen to them, watch their body language. Is this the type of person that clicks with you with and what you’re trying to accomplish? Take that shortlist, go online, and check them out. This will help you narrow everything down.


You Should be Talking to the Oil and Gas Speaker Themselves

Then once you have it narrowed down, ask for contract terms upfront. Read the contract. If you don’t understand, reach out to them. And at this point, you should have gotten past speaking to the assistant of the speaker. And you should be talking to the oil and gas speaker themselves. Or at least to have a phone conversation with the actual speaker.


What is the travel and entertainment part of their contract look like? Do you have to pay upfront? What about timelines and commitments? Are they able to meet your timelines for your oil and gas event, or do you have to try to work your event around them? All that should help you narrow it down to the one speaker that will do the best job for you. And make sure you accomplish your goals.


So once you have all these stuff done, take a breath, relax, enjoy. You have now hired an oil and gas speaker that’s going to make you look good, that’s going to make your event successful and make the audience very happy.


Can you do me a favor? If you like this, can you share this? There are some buttons to the left up top with all those social channels. Just click a couple of share, this helps us get our message out to more people so that we can do more good for the world.

But Are You Getting Any Better?

Getting BetterI once read a quote from K. Anders Ericsson about expertise. He said, “I have been walking for 48 years, but I am not getting any better at it.” His point? Just because you are doing something over and over again is no proof that you are getting any better at it.

Ericsson is the man who coined the 10,000-hour rule, which is often mistaken for the idea that repetition over time is what generates expertise. But that isn’t what his research shows. What makes you better is “deliberate practice. “ It’s the act of intentionally getting better.

I just checked my stats at I have posted to the blog 3,102 times, but a couple hundred of those posts are videos or podcasts. Let’s call it 2,900 written posts. I have written 2,054,838 words in all the posts combined. If those words were books, that would be 34 books, the average word count being 60,000 words.

If you go back to the archives in 2009 and 2010, you will see that I was not a very good writer. Writing helped me improve my writing, but not so much as actually editing my own writing. I was intentional about improving, so I separated the writing from the editing, and I spent more time crafting sentences. I am still no Dan Pink or Malcolm Gladwell, but I have improved through deliberate effort (and I still have much more improving to do).

On Intentionality

The problem with this concept of mastery is that most of us think the repetition alone is enough. Because we believe this, we aren’t intentionally trying to improve.

Even though you have made 1,000 sales calls, you may or may not be getting better at sales. You might have negotiated hundreds of contracts without ever improving your ability to craft a deal or defend the investment your client needs to make to produce the results you need. In most areas of our lives, like Ericsson suggests about walking, we are on autopilot.

It is possible to have the same year repeatedly. The stories on television and Facebook may have changed, but have you? Are you better than you were this time last year? Not in every area of your life, but in some area where you have made the decision to intentionally improve?

Here is the rub: You must be intentional about self-improvement. You have to be deliberate about your personal and professional development. The areas where you want to make an improvement will only improve when you “deliberately practice,” when you focus on the improvement in that area, becoming aware of the gaps in your performance, intentionally changing what you are doing, and modifying your approach as you notice the results of those changes.

Are You Getting Better?

  • In what areas of your life are you right now having the same year you had last year?
  • In what areas do you need to intentionally improve to generate the results you want—and the results you are capable of producing?
  • What are you going to do to ensure that you do not have the same year and over and over again?

Hit reply to send me your thoughts, ideas, and stories. Hit forward to send this newsletter to someone you know who could benefit from thinking about proactively improving their performance in some area. Ask them to join us here each Sunday by signing up at

Happy Father’s Day!

Do good work this week, and I’ll see you back here next Sunday!

Anthony Iannarino

P.S. This newsletter is sponsored by my friends at SAP. If you need a CRM for your personal use or for your team, check out their Digital CRM here, and sign up for a free trial.

P.P.S. This week I am part of a discussion on The Death of Social Selling. What I say is going to be controversial to many. You can tune in, Wednesday at 1:00 PM by signing up here.

P.P.P.S. We are just a few weeks from launching The Lost Art of Closing: Winning the 10 Commitments That Drive Sales. I just finished designing the bonus packages, and those will go live in the next week or so. Bulk packages are going to be available soon. If you are considering buying books for your whole team, email me here so we can take care of you!



Contributor Anthony Lannarino is an entrepreneur, speaker, author, and consultant. He writes daily at and you can subscribe to his newsletter at

The Death of Social Selling

I want to invite you to an event in which I am a participant a couple weeks from now. The segment of the event I am participating in is called “The Death of Social Selling?” I want to share a few ideas with you here about the value of social selling and what my complaints have been from those who promote social selling as the only method of prospecting.

Social Selling

This event is June 21st at 1:15 PM here: The Death of Social Selling

What’s Wrong with Social Selling

First, the problem that I have with the way social selling is presented is three-fold. It is presented as the panacea for building a pipeline of opportunities, and it is not, nor will it ever be. It has been sold as a replacement for cold calling, to the detriment of sales people, sales organizations, and the prospective clients who need their help. Those who sell social selling present it as the only method salespeople will use now—and forever into the future. They make this case using “statistics” that are suspect to anyone who actually sells.

Second, providing people with the belief that they don’t have to do what is necessary to succeed hurts those people. Social is more fun than cold calling, but it’s a bit like a fitness plan built on Netflix and ice cream. I have personally met salespeople who are not taking care of themselves or their family because they are not doing the work necessary to produce results. This is always true for some portion of any sales force, but they have never been provided with an excuse that is supported by so many who claim to be sales improvement specialists.

Third, the people who promote and sell social media over-index on results when it comes to creating opportunities. Their conceit is in believing that everyone else will experience the same results of their incestuous, content-marketing, mostly supported and shared by other believers. When you promote social selling to people who want to believe that social selling is all that you have promised, it’s easy to get attention. The salesperson wants to believe they don’t need to prospect. Their company wants to do something to help them create more opportunities, and struggles to help them improve their effectiveness at doing so.

I want you to notice something about people who are well known in social selling: they are all content creators. What they are doing is content marketing, and it is extraordinarily powerful. A someone who writes 365 blog posts a year, now records daily vlog that will match that 365, sends a weekly newsletter each week, posts to Instagram with created content 5 times a week, and shares all of this content on multiple channels, I can tell you that it produces results. The problem is, most people can’t do this.

Think about the salespeople in financial services and pharmaceutical. They would not be permitted to create the kind of content that is worth looking at because it would never be approved by their legal department. Think about the people who sell industrial-type stuff, whose prospects aren’t on LinkedIn at all, nor do they Tweet. Think about the advice that is given, like post a blog post three times a week. If you have 600 salespeople writing a single blog post a week, how do you manage the workflow to ensure that the post is on point, well-written, and passes a legal review?

Most people don’t want to write content, and many more are horrified at being on camera. While there is plenty of content to share on the social channels, the vast rewards go to the creator, not the curator. Most people who use the social channels are consumers of content.

Finally, no one who actually works in sales improvement believes that salespeople should choose to use a single method, and they all include the social channels as a method to be employed. Those who preach the gospel of social believe and demand that there is only one medium, and that medium is the social channels. Where we are omni, they believe there is a single method, that all others have been rendered obsolete.

There is a place for the social tools in sales, even though I am, beginning to see that the digital transformation of sales is going to allow for intimacy at scale, a framework and a presentation I have been building for the last year. I’ve also started writing an eBook about Intimacy at Scale, but my real book, The Lost Art of Closing: Winning the 10 Commitments That Drive Sales is less than two months from the launch date (August 8th), so that eBook has to wait.

Social is Dead. Long Live Digital.

I will tell you that social selling, as it has been presented and promoted up to this point, is dead. The promises made were never kept. It massively over-promised and under-delivered.

If social worked as promised, then LinkedIn would not require their salespeople to make cold calls. If it allowed you create opportunities you couldn’t create without making a cold call, I would not have received a cold call from Hubspot, the leader in inbound marketing. If there were no other methods of prospecting available, you would not have seen Gary Vaynerchuk, who uses the social tools better than anyone on Earth, tell two young app developers that he won’t take a meeting unless they cold email and cold call all their prospects and provide him documented proof.

We have never used any channel to its full effect without years of experience, and without making serious adjustments. This is going to be true for the social channels, and it is going to be true for the digital tools that follow. Right now, social is above the funnel, but I don’t believe that this will be true as sales evolves in its use of digital.

Comment to send me your thoughts, ideas, and stories. Hit forward to send this newsletter to someone you know who could benefit from thinking about prospecting and where social fits. Ask them to join us here each Sunday by signing up at

Do good work this week, and I’ll see you back here next Sunday!

Anthony Iannarino

P.S. If you are looking for a simple, powerful, easy to use CRM, then let me point you to our new sponsor, SAP Digital CRM. It’s affordable, easy to set up, and powerful enough to allow you to run your sales force. Click here for a free trial.



Contributor Anthony Lannarino is an entrepreneur, speaker, author, and consultant. He writes daily at and you can subscribe to his newsletter at

Playing a Longer Game in Client Acquisition

A $1,000,000 deal is a big deal. It’s big enough that you should want to win that deal. Given the opportunity, you’d likely be aggressive in pursuing a deal of that size. But you would still be thinking small, and your actions may not be in line with the real value of a deal of that size.

How long do you keep a client? Is it three years? Five years? Maybe you keep your core clients for a decade or more. That would make a $1,000,000 deal worth $3M, or $5M, or $10M. How different would you behave if you were playing for that larger number?

Would it make sense to spend time nurturing the relationships inside the companies who would value what you do so much that the eventual creation of an opportunity worth millions of dollars makes that a worthwhile investment of your time?

How much time would you spend in discovery, really learning your dream client’s business, understanding the needs of the people inside the company, and helping them build a solution that would compel them to decide to work with you instead your competitor?

How would your overall strategy change if you were playing the long game, trading now for a deeper, sustainable relationship that potentially spans decades.

If you are a sales leader, how different would your pipeline look if you stopped looking at the annual revenue of the deals you are pursuing and instead multiplied that number by your client retention? How would you manage and coach deals if you were playing for lifetime value and wallet share instead of what you believe you might generate in year one? How different would your planning be if you were projecting these wins into future years?

There is a benefit to taking a longer view of client acquisition and retention. Taking a longer view of your client relationships provides a more strategic view, and a more strategic approach to go with it. What if what you are doing now is really setting the stage for a lifetime relationships built on the value you can create over time?

Are the actions you taking based on a longer view of what is really at stake when you acquire clients?

Look at the biggest deals you are pursuing now. What are they really worth, and what does that longer view require of you?

Comment to send me your thoughts, ideas, and stories. Hit forward to send this newsletter to someone you know who could benefit from taking a longer view of their client acquisition efforts. Ask them to join us here each Sunday by signing up at

Do good work this week, and I’ll see you back here next Sunday!

Anthony Iannarino

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P.P.S. Look for an email this week about joining the Street Team for The Lost Art of Closing. If you want to read an advance copy of the book and help promote the book, you’ll want to sign up. Go here to watch the unboxing of the galleys.

P.P.P.S. If you aren’t subscribed to the YouTube channel, I have already posted 137 videos there. Some sales managers are requiring their teams to subscribe, and some are using the lessons for their team meetings. Check it out and subscribe here.



Contributor Anthony Lannarino is an entrepreneur, speaker, author, and consultant. He writes daily at and you can subscribe to his newsletter at