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Monthly Archive: December 2019

Resource Discovery: Sesame Street for Military Families

first_imgU.S. Air Force [Muppets Treat Kids to Cope by Louis Briscese, June 6, 2016, CC0]By: Bari Sobelson, MS, LMFTSesame WorkshopFrom Big Bird and Cookie Monster to Bert and Ernie, Oscar the Grouch, and Elmo, Sesame Workshop has provided more than 150 countries with the unique mission of helping kids grow stronger, smarter, and kinder. Through an array of platforms including television, film, home videos, books, magazines, and community outreach, Sesame Workshop has been a staple in many homes and communities.Sesame StreetIn 1969, Sesame Workshop revolutionized children’s television programming by releasing the very first episode of Sesame Street on November 10th. Their mission with the Sesame Street series was “to use television to teach preschoolers, and give them the skills that would ensure a successful transition from home to school.” With nearly 50 years of programming under their belts, Sesame Street has become a staple in the homes of many families, including my own, both as a child and now as a parent.Sesame Workshop has always possessed the ability to understand and address the needs of children and their families. One poignant example of this is their recognition of the needs for resources to support military families. In 2006, “Sesame Workshop launched the bilingual (English/Spanish) multimedia outreach initiative Talk, Listen Connect: Helping Families During Military Deployment (TLC). Not surprisingly, this initiative revealed a need for more; resulting in the production of Talk, Listen, Connect: Deployments, Homecomings, Changes (TLC 2) in 2008 and Talk, Listen, Connect: When Families Grieve (TLC 3) in 2010. If you would like to learn more about Talk, Listen, and Connect, you can click here.Sesame Street for Military FamiliesIn addition to all of the amazing resources that Sesame Workshop has provided through TLC, they have also created Sesame Street for Military Families, which is a free, bilingual website with information and resources on a variety of topics pertinent to military families including deployments, homecomings, injuries, grief, and self-expression.Sesame Street’s commitment to Military Families is evident in this site that includes videos, downloadable PDFs, helpful links, mobile apps and more! So, if you haven’t already discovered all of the possibilities through this resource, start your journey now by visiting http://sesamestreetformilitaryfamilies.org/Also, be sure to visit the Kids Serve Too! webinar series page to learn more about the collaboration between the Military Families Learning Network and Sesame Street for Military Families where you can explore resources and strategies related to community violence, military relocation, military caregiving, and young children with special needs. This series occurs throughout 2019 and continuing education credit opportunities are provided for free. Sign up for our Kids Serve Too! email list to stay in the loop!This post was written by Bari Sobelson, MS, LMFT for the MFLN Family Development Team. The MFLN Family Development team aims to support the development of professionals working with military families. Find out about our team on our website, Facebook, and Twitter.last_img read more

The Dolly Zoom: Film History and Video Tutorial

first_imgZollySmash ShotTriple Reverse Zoom Vertigo ZoomSmash ZoomRetrograde Zoom Trans-TravTrombone ShotReverse Give your shots some depth with a dolly zoom. Check out the history of this popular film shot, as well as a few tips to nail it on-set.What is a Dolly Zoom?The dolly zoom is an easy film shooting technique in theory but not as easy in practice. It’s accomplished by zooming in while the camera dollies back, or vise-versa.The technique, when performed correctly changes the field of view for the background but not the main subject. So, the background will compress behind your subject making the frame feel compact (or if done the opposite way a dolly zoom will make the scene grow to feel spacious and open).Dolly zooms go by a lot of different names including: If you want to be a successful filmmaker you need to know every single term. Just kidding…most people just refer to it as a dolly zoom.History of the Dolly ZoomThe dolly zoom was ‘invented’ by a second-unit cameraman, Irmin Roberts on the set of Alfred Hitchcock’s Vertigo. Roberts made history with his new cinematic technique but was uncredited in the film.The technique was later popularized and widely used in many classic films including Jaws and E.T. Today dolly zooms can be seen in tons of major motion pictures, causing some to say they are overused. The following video by Vashi Nedomansky shows the progression of dolly zooms over the years.When Should I Use the Dolly Zoom?A dolly zoom is often used when trying to simulate dizziness or internal conflict. Simply put, a dolly zoom will make your subject appear crowded when you zoom in or isolated when you zoom out.For Hitchcock the technique was used to extend depth and a feeling of dizziness but for Spielberg the technique is usually used to convey discomfort. Obviously there is no set in stone rule for when you can and can not use a dolly zoom but like any other film technique, motivation is the key to determining whether or not it is appropriate for the your scene.Dolly Zoom TutorialThe following video by FilmmakerIQ demonstrates how to create a dolly shot. With some practice and a steady hand you can be a dolly zoom master.The always entertaining Ryan Connolly from FilmRiot demonstrates the technique in this episode of Film Riot (jump to 7:20 for the Dolly Zoom coverage):Want to try it in post? This tutorial by Novalapse shows the “Vertigo Effect” applied to a timelapse shot in After Effects:Do you have a secret to making your dolly zooms smooth? Share your thoughts and on-set experiences in the comments below. Hitchcock ZoomStretch ShotZido Push PullJaws ShotContra-Zoomlast_img read more

How to Use Project Backups in Autodesk Smoke

first_imgIf the library also has a matching clib_hist folder be sure to rename it .bkup and rename the matching backup library so that your setups load properly in Smoke. If you get this message, then it means that you didn’t change the clib_hist folder or you changed the wrong one.   This is very bad because it means your setups maybe lost for good and you can’t open/edit or render the CFX clip.When you are all done… Relaunch Smoke and your Media Library in Smoke will have been recovered and your problems should be solved. Note: you only need to change the .clib files for the Libraries that contain a corruption or bad clip or lost clip. All of the libraries are separate and unique to their data.Any questions on the procedure? Feel free to leave a comment here on Premiumbeat. If you have ever had a project corruption or loose a clip in Autodesk Smoke, check out this exclusive video tutorial on how to work with clip backups.I have seen a lot of forum posts from people asking how to recover clips or projects after a crash or corruption in Smoke. Normally Autodesk would tell you to contact Support. The Autodesk Support is wonderful, some of the best in the business…but it is possible for you to do-it-yourself.  Now most will tell you to do this via Terminal and Command Line. But I don’t know too many users who like Terminal commands. It’s 2014, we have GUI.So below is a video tutorial that will explain how Autodesk Smoke saves it’s clips metadata and how to use the Auto Saves and recovers your Sequences, Clips and Libraries if they are damaged due to a crash, corruption, or even user error.NOTE: Be very careful when working with Project Backups.  It is possible to loose data if you are not careful. It is easy once you understand the files and what they do. Perform these actions at our own risk.Best viewed full screen:For the most part, the blog I did for Smoke 2013 on Project Files is accurate still. There are a few differences in the files layout, but the concepts of how the metadata is stored is still valid.Step-by-Step Clip Library Backup Recovery Close Smoke, as you don’t want it running and autosaving when you are working in the backup files. In Finder use the Go To Folder option in the GO Menu [Shift+CMD+G]. Type /usr/discreet/ and press GO.The use of /usr/discreet/… is due to legacy file structure when Smoke was a Discreet Logic company product before it was acquired by Autodesk. The file path is maintained for compatibility reasons with archives from previous Smoke versions.Open the clip folder and then open the Media Volume for your storage. In the example I have 3 media storage folders on 3 different drives. You will only have 1 (stonefs7) normally.Open the folder that matches your Project Name.Inside you will see .clib files and and .clib_hist folders. The names will match the Libraries in your Smoke Media Library.The .clib files are also incremented as 000.clib through 003.clib.  000.clib is the current and active library being loaded in Smoke. The 001-003.clib files are backups that get created when you save or the Smoke auto saves.The clib_hist folders contain the CFX setup information for the clip. Any Library that has a clip that contains a CFX setup on it, will create this clib_hist folder to mange the CFX setups.To use/load one of the backup libraries to recover from a corrupt clip or lost data rename the 000.clib library file that contains that clip with .bkup.Now choose any one of the other matching library files 001, 002, or 003.clib and rename it to 000.clib.  This will now be the “active” library that Smoke will load.last_img read more

Filmmaking Tips: How To Record Live Music in Your Films

first_imgThe filmmakers behind La Barracuda share their secrets to filming and recording live music in their OCFF-winning narrative feature.All images via La Barracuda.There’s an undeniable power to films that find creative ways to feature music as an integral part of a film’s narrative. One recent example is La Barracuda, a “slow-burn Texas thriller brimming with tension and a lot of music,” which screened at the Oak Cliff Film Festival, fresh off of its lauded premiere at SXSW a few months earlier.Filmmakers Jason Cortlund and Julia Halperin (who are pictured below receiving the narrative feature award and prize package at the OCFF) had to find creative ways to make a musical world come to life within a film that is deeply rooted in the rich country and folk music scene in Austin, Texas.It was important to us that the performances and music culture be woven into the story in natural and subtle ways because we trust our audience to know better — and music’s really the key to understanding the story.’ Within a limited indie budget, we were tasked with finding a way to record ‘live’ music to create scenes and atmosphere that looked, felt, and most importantly, sounded true to form.If you’re looking to tug your audience’s heart strings by using “live” music on a project of your own, you may want to check out these filmmakers’ tips before recording.You Don’t Have to Fake It to Make ItWhen we started casting, we were committed to finding someone who could act, sing, and play guitar for the lead role of Sinaloa. But there were lots of people along the way pushing us to consider casting a bigger name actress and just faking the guitar playing scenes with inserts of a hand double. While that would have potentially made the film much easier to finance, it would strip out the heart of what we were going after.One of the most endearing aspects of a film like La Barracuda is the authenticity of its characters and their relationships with the music in the film. Lead actress Sophie Reed‘s character (Sinaloa) actually performed her songs herself — which can both be helpful and problematic.Know Your RightsWe knew that negotiating song licenses can be tricky and expensive, so we brought in a music supervisor during development. History is littered with films that can’t be distributed because of music rights issues. We had to be careful and not get our hearts set on any song in particular until we knew we could afford the license. We also learned that the public domain can be tricky — while traditional lyrics might be free to use, a specific musical arrangement may require its own license.Using music in films, even original compositions, can get tricky very quickly in terms of licensing. It’s important, as in the case of La Barracuda, to do your research and work with a music supervisor from the very beginning — lest you film scenes with live music that you can’t actually use in your final cut.Camera and Sound Departments Need to Work TogetherThe camera can be a bully. Because the frame gets so much attention in terms of lighting and mise en scene, the sound department can become a whipping boy — forced to always make compromises that must then be reconciled in post. Not only does this just forestall dealing with a problem, it also makes for a bummer crew dynamic. As directors, we consciously try to treat sound and camera (and all departments) with equal respect.As any sound mixer will tell you, this certainly rings true on all sets. Cinematography seems to always be the head honcho; however, for a film whose soul is the music, it takes a special relationship between sound and camera departments — expertly demonstrated by La Barracuda‘s director of photography (Jonathan Nastasi) and sound mixer (Paul Toohey). Their collaboration found a way to balance the two elements masterfully.Use the Board In addition to multi-track field recordings of live music performances (often with lavs inside every instrument, and on every singer, and a double boom), when we were in venues like The Saxon Pub or The Old Coupland Dancehall, we made use of their in-house mixing boards as well. We had brought in live-event sound mixers to capture secondary recordings from the board feed via the house mics — which gave us many more options in post (as well as clean recordings for a potential soundtrack release).This is actually a pretty clever workaround as a way to record “live” music authentically while making opportunistic use of the environment. While not every scene will be in a bar or concert venue, that doesn’t mean board mixing is out of the question. Having a board on set can often be a great tool for balancing everything from music to recording dialogue.Have Faith — Music Will Add LayersWhile the musical elements definitely added layers of cost and complexity to the production, they’re also the soul of the film. We shot our first live song on day three, and we could see the lights go on with all our crew — someone literally said “Oh! THIS is the film we’re making.” It instantly made everyone so happy, and it drew us together for the rest of the show. Overhearing our key grip (a burly, tattooed dude who goes by “Animal”) humming a sweet Mastersons tune as he loaded the truck that night gave us all the reassurance we needed — the effort would pay dividends in screen pleasure.At the end of the day, the choice to use music in the film depends on how much it can add to the story and overall production. Not every project needs “live” music scenes (as they can be quite tricky). However, in the case of La Barracuda, it proves that going the extra mile to record authentic music performances can create something unique that audiences (and the crew) can feel.Samuel Goldwyn Films picked up La Barracuda, it will see a theatrical release in the U.S. this fall. Check out the Facebook and Twitter pages for updates on upcoming screening dates and locations.last_img read more

5 Reasons You Should Purchase a “Nifty Fifty” 50mm Lens

first_imgEvery filmmaker and videographer should have a “nifty fifty” 50mm lens at their disposal. Here are five reasons to add one to your toolkit.Cover image by Wang An Qi.Today’s digital filmmaking world is increasingly becoming point-and-shoot and run-and-gun. Zoom lenses have become the norm for those who feel that they don’t have time to change lenses often and set shots carefully.However, if you know how to use one well, a “nifty fifty” 50mm lens can be a very powerful tool for capturing sharp, cinematic footage in any situation. It may even save your butt one day — and buying one won’t break the bank.Here are the five main reasons you should own a “nifty fifty” 50mm lens.1. The New StandardImage by mad_aurel.In a great article over at The Atlantic, Allain Daigle recently argued that the 50mm has forever changed filmmaking, as it is often seen as “the most objective” and best approximation of human vision. I highly recommend reading the full article on the history of the 50mm through its production and mechanics, but needless to say, in theory, under the right circumstances, it absolutely communicates a perspective most closely tied with how we view the world around us.2. Sharp and FastImage by Mehaniq.As a fixed lens (as opposed to a zoom, which can change focal lengths), nifty fifties are very fast and sharp alternatives to higher f-stop zoom options. You can usually find 50mm lenses starting at f/2.8 or lower, which is already a sharp, fast, and shallow option for cinematic footage in just about every situation.3. Low Light HelpImage by ASB63.By the same token, when you’re shooting at a low f-stop, a wide-open lens can be surprisingly helpful for getting the most out of low light situations. That being said, you don’t always want to be razor thin with your depth of field, but if you’re in a pinch and need to capture quality information in low light, your nifty fifty can be a lifesaver.4. Crop FriendlyImage by Mehaniq.In today’s market, you very well could end up changing cameras pretty often (or working with other filmmakers using different cameras). While full frame is still the ideal for most filmmakers and videographers, working on crop sensor cameras can be common. However, with a 50mm (instead of, say, an 85mm prime), you’re not in a terrible bind when shooting on a 1.75x crop factor. It’ll be a tighter macro, but you can still position yourself better than other lens offerings.5. CostImage by Sewoky.Perhaps the most appealing aspect of a nifty fifty 50mm lens is the price. Fixed lenses are usually cheaper than their zoom counterparts due to fewer moving parts and mechanisms. However, many high-end prime lenses get pricey quickly.However, due to their size (and depending on their speed), you can just about always find a nifty fifty for anywhere from a few hundred dollars to less than one hundred (used).Shop around, look at some options at different f-stops, but rest assured that you’re going to get a powerful, fast, sharp, and helpful lens if you go with the nifty fifty.For more camera and lens resources, check out these filmmaking articles.The Cameras and Lenses Behind 2018’s Oscar-Nominated FilmsWorking with Vintage Lenses on Modern CamerasHow Camera Lenses are Made6 Online Resources for Renting Camera GearVideo Tutorial: The Best Lenses for Gimbal Cinematographylast_img read more

How to Create a Scribble Animation in After Effects

first_imgLooking for more video tutorials? Check these out.Everything to Know About Layer Styles in After EffectsCreate a Glitch Effect For Logos and Titles in After EffectsMake Your Titles And Graphics Pop with This Advanced Glow EffectAfter Effects: Create a Modern Slideshow AnimationCreate An Animated Website Presentation Using After Effects Step 1: Prepare the WorkspaceFirst, I need to set up my workspace. For this tutorial, I’m going to add some cartoonish flames that will come off the back of a race car. I’ll add the flames using the Brush tool, which you can find in the Tools panel or by using the Cmd (Mac) or Ctrl (PC) + B keyboard shortcut. The brush tool only works on the Layer panel — you can’t paint directly on the Composition panel. To open up my clip in the Layer panel, I’ll simply double-click the layer. Next, I’ll set up my brush.Step 2: Prepare Your BrushAs soon as you select the Brush tool, both the Paint and Brushes panels will become visible. Both panels offer a variety of options. The Paint panel allows you to change the opacity, flow, color, diameter, blend mode, channels, and duration. Clicking on the diameter button will bring you directly to the Brushes panel, where you can specify the diameter, angle, roundness, hardness, and spacing of your brush. You can even save your brush settings for future use.The duration section of your Paint panel is one of the most important properties. Since this is a fast-moving clip, I want my flames to animate as quickly and frenetically as possible. For this reason, I’ll change the duration to “Single Frame.” If I want something a bit more subdued or clunky, I can change the Duration to “Custom” and then manually type in whatever frame rate I want. With both my workspace and brush ready, it’s time to scribble.Step 3: ScribbleTo start my scribble animation, I’ll bring my playhead to the first frame of my clip in the timeline. Using the Brush tool directly on the Layer panel, I’ll draw my flames on the first frame. Now it’s as simple as drawing the same flames for each frame. This particular clip is two seconds in length, shot at 25fps, so if I want flames throughout the entire clip, I will need to draw these same flames 50 times. If you want to create an animation that changes over time, it’s imperative to know the length of your clip so you can make subtle changes.Knowing a few shortcuts will save you a lot of time and possible headaches when creating a frame-by-frame animation. To quickly navigate by individual frames inside After Effects, use the Page Up/Down keys. To resize the diameter of your brush, hold the Command (Mac) or Control (PC) key while you click and drag up or down.Et voilà! The final animation. So you think frame-by-frame animation is just too tedious for your film or video project? In this tutorial, we invite you to think again.Many people think animating frame by frame is tedious and time-consuming, but it doesn’t have to be. The animated scribble technique is a perfect example of an easy way to create dynamic, handmade graphic elements. You’ve seen this effect in a lot of popular music videos over the last few years, including videos by Justin Bieber and Bruno Mars. Let’s take a closer look at how, in just a few simple steps, you can add eye-catching graphics to your videos.last_img read more

Quick Tips: Improving Your Product Shots and Commercials

first_imgThe key to an efficient product shoot is knowing which lights and what camera movement will deliver on your client’s expectations.The number one rule in product photography (video or photo) is making whatever you’re shooting aesthetically appealing — no matter what it is. That’s a lot of pressure. But let’s be real — it’s important to make clients happy and to keep getting gigs. So, how should you approach shooting something as mundane as a bottle, a box, a tool, etc.? Don’t Shoot Shallow FocusIn the video above, Kozu explains how shooting with a shallow depth of field can make the shoot seem lower-budget. Because you usually open up your aperture when you need more light, this “effect” makes it seem like you don’t have enough lighting for the product. It’s a simple aspect of the shoot that you might not consider. However, you must think about how your client will view the end result.Keep the Motion SimpleMake the shot about the product. Don’t try to outdo every other commercial you’ve seen. The focus should be on what you’re shooting, not how you’re shooting it. So keep it simple.Obviously, you’re not going to go out there and buy a KIRA or a MIA (or in this video’s case, a Bolt). That’s okay because those crazy, awesome, robotic camera movements aren’t necessarily something you need just yet. You can pull off all of the classic moves you need with an inexpensive slider or a jib.Double the MotionSo, in addition to some nice, simple moves, add a Lazy Susan turntable to the shot. Not only does this add more energy, it’s a cheap, totally viable way to increase production value. These simple, sleek turns will create the movement and presentation you need to really showcase a product, no matter what you’re shooting. You can pull this type of shot off using a jib or gimbal to push in or pull out from the product.If you’re interested in learning more about jibs and cranes, check out our video tutorial.Study the MaterialHere is, perhaps, the single greatest piece of advice: prepare. Preparing for the shoot can single-handedly save your entire video. With product shots, specifically, you want to know how light will react ahead of time. You want to know what lights to bring and how to use them. Knowing the product will also help you determine what types of motion and camera movements you’re going to need — one step guides the next. Recently, we covered how lighting a scene the night before can save you a lot of time and effort — the same is true here.If you’re interested in the specifics of how to light your product shoot, check out our tutorial below: Cover image via Indy Mogul.Looking for more filmmaking tips and tricks? Check out these articles.Production Tips: The Four Secrets of a Successful DocumentaryVideo Tutorial: Determining The Best Lens for Your ProjectThe Best Quotes from Directors, Editors, and Everything in BetweenTutorial: Removing Audio Pops and Recording Audio DifferentlyDirecting Challenges: How to Communicate Effectively with Actorslast_img read more

Consistent Effort is the Key to Better Sales Results

first_imgOne of the primary reasons salespeople produce sporadic results is because their actions are equally sporadic. Their effort isn’t consistent enough to produce the results they want—or need. It’s zero effort for a long time, and then it’s time to play catch up. But that doesn’t work.You can’t go long periods without prospecting and then prospect like crazy. You can’t make up for lost time and cram to get results. Building a pipeline doesn’t lend itself to sporadic activity. To build your pipeline, you need consistent effort over a long period of time. Anything less gives you wavy results—it if it gives you anything at all.You build a pipeline through consistent prospecting.You can’t follow your sale process for a little while and then abandon doing what you know to be effective in hopes of succeeding by taking some easier actions. There are all kinds of occasions to fall out of your sales process, especially when what you are seeing means you have to get creative. But not following the sales process means poor results, longer sales cycles, and lost opportunities.You win sales opportunities by consistently following your sales process, by making it your standard operating procedure.Speaking of prospecting, nurturing is another area we can produce an inconsistent effort. If you only make a call every 90 days, you aren’t nurturing the relationships you need—you’re neglecting them.You only open the relationships with a frequent and consistent effort to create value.It’s easy to ask for the commitments you need when it feels like the answer will be in the affirmative, and it’s easy not to when you fear the answer will be no. By failing to ask for what you really need, you go without information that you need to create and win an opportunity. You also go without the access to stakeholders that you need. Then, you’re surprised to learn that you lost an opportunity for which you are perfect.By consistently asking for the commitments you need, you improve the likelihood of winning the opportunities you create.None of this is true for sales alone. It’s true in whatever your endeavor, for whatever result it is you hope to achieve. Consistency is the key. It’s the daily stacking up of your efforts, brick upon brick, which ultimately produces results.QuestionsWhat do you do most consistently? How are your results in that area of your life?What do you do only sporadically? How are your results different?What do you need to commit to doing more consistently to produce the results you want?What do you need to stop doing so consistently to produce the results you’re after? Get the Free eBook! Learn how to sell without a sales manager. Download my free eBook! You need to make sales. You need help now. We’ve got you covered. This eBook will help you Seize Your Sales Destiny, with or without a manager. Download Nowlast_img read more

Video: Better Than Your Competitor Today

first_img0:56 Selling is a zero sum game1:24 How I know you have a competitive spirit2:00 You are competing to create more value2:15 Failure is feedback about the value you create2:39 Be better than your competitor’s A-game today Essential Reading! Get my 2nd book: The Lost Art of Closing “In The Lost Art of Closing, Anthony proves that the final commitment can actually be one of the easiest parts of the sales process—if you’ve set it up properly with other commitments that have to happen long before the close. The key is to lead customers through a series of necessary steps designed to prevent a purchase stall.” Buy Nowlast_img read more

The Leadership Playbook: How Selling Helps You Become a Leader

first_img Essential Reading! Get my 2nd book: The Lost Art of Closing “In The Lost Art of Closing, Anthony proves that the final commitment can actually be one of the easiest parts of the sales process—if you’ve set it up properly with other commitments that have to happen long before the close. The key is to lead customers through a series of necessary steps designed to prevent a purchase stall.” Buy Now If you want to be a leader, there is no better place to start than in sales. The attributes and skills you need to develop to become a leader are required of you as a salesperson. Including the need to understand business, generate revenue, and build a profitable business.Understanding What Other People WantSelling is the act of helping people get what they want or need. To do that you have to understand what people want. What you need to know and understand is all contained inside your prospective client’s mind. You have to know how to gain access to their thinking.To sell well it helps to have a deep understanding of human psychology. It also helps to be empathetic and to care about other people, both of which eliminate the self-orientation that destroys sales.Understanding what people want and need and connecting with them will help you become a better leader.Creating a Case for ChangeSometimes people don’t know what they want or what they need. Other times, perhaps more often, people don’t want to do what they need to do or what they need to do to achieve better results.Much of the time selling means helping people develop a case for change and the commitment to do something different than they are doing now. In sales, this often requires an investment of money. But it also requires an investment of time and emotional energy. Change isn’t easy.If you want to be a leader, you are by definition an agent of change. Selling will help you become a more effective agent.Creating a Compelling Vision of the FutureWhat salespeople sell is a future state. They sell outcomes that aren’t presently being achieved. To do that, they create a compelling vision of the future that pulls the prospective client towards it.This is also what leaders do. They develop and share a compelling vision of the future they are leading the people and organization in their charge towards.A leader has to sell that vision. He has to convince others that it is the right future, and that is worth their investment of time and energy.Building ConsensusLeaders make decisions. But they don’t make those decisions alone. They build consensus among the leadership team and among the people on whose support they will depend if they are going to generate that future state.A salesperson must be able to bring people together around a common goal, mitigating any damage the change might cause some members, and asking people to set aside what they want for the greater good.Leadership is about more than making decisions. It’s about making decisions stick, and executing once they are made. That requires consensus.Accountability for ResultsThere are varied ideas about what is the most important thing a leader does. Many people say it’s vision. Others say it’s moral authority. If you had ten people in a room you would have eleven opinions on what makes a good leader. For my money, leadership boils down to accountability for a certain set of results.Salespeople are accountable for producing the results they sell. They are accountable for the outcomes they promise their clients. And this, for me, is the essence of leadership: accountability. It’s stepping up and taking responsibility for producing a set of outcomes, something successful salespeople routinely do.If you want to be a leader, sales is the perfect place to begin honing the attributes and skills you will need.last_img read more

8 Ways to Start a Fight

first_imgWhat follows is not a prescription for finding your way into conflict. Instead, it’s a list of things you may now knowingly recognize as causing conflict where it isn’t necessary—and when it doesn’t serve you. Think of these as things to avoid, and this post as a strong warning.Personal Attack: Provocation. Verbal assault. Perhaps one of the best ways to start a fight is to personally attack another person. Making a personal attack on someone is almost an absolute guarantee of having someone respond in kind. Even if you’re frustrated, and even if the other person has done something you believe to be wrong, a personal attack does nothing to help the situation. It can only make things worse.Ignore Them: Another way to start a fight is to ignore someone. The fact that you are ignoring them can have the effect of causing them to try harder to get your attention. One of the ways to ensure that you get someone’s attention is to engage in conflict by saying something so rude that it commands a response.Challenge Their Significance: Disrespect them. Belittle them. There aren’t too many things that will cause a response like challenging another human being’s significance. All you need to do to manufacture conflict is to disrespect them as a human being. The more disrespect you offer, the more certain and more aggressive the response. It’s also relatively easy to get this response without meaning to, so be careful.Public Humiliation: Human beings will do all kinds of things to avoid being humiliated-including humiliating themselves. One of the responses to being publicly humiliated is to defend your dignity by attacking the person who humiliated you. It’s possible for an individual who humiliates themselves to attack another person to save face. If this seems juvenile to you, it is, but it is not limited to the young. No one wants the tribe to have a laugh at their expense or think less of them.Assume Bad Intentions: This one ties very closely to a personal attack because it’s not all that different. One of the ways that you can cause someone to feel that they must defend themselves is to accuse them of having bad intentions. There are a lot of people who believe things you don’t believe. There a lot of people who do things you don’t believe they should do. But it’s a mistake to believe that they have bad intentions and doing so can cause conflict. This is what occurs in every political argument you see on Facebook.Be Argumentative: It is impossible to argue with yourself. To argue, you need someone to assist you by participating in the argument. If you don’t want to fight, and you don’t want to argue, one way is to extract yourself from the conflict by removing yourself from the situation. To do that, all you have to do is stop, or better still, never start. Just say, “We’ll have to agree to disagree, but I respect your view on this.”Threaten: “If you don’t… I will . . . The word “if” is problematic. The “I will” that follows is even more troublesome. You are offering a threat. And when people feel they are threatened, they generally believe they must defend themselves. There is rarely ever a reason to offer a threat. If you are going to do something, you’re better off doing it than threatening it. The threat gives rise to conflict.Offer Ultimatums: The biggest problem with ultimatums is that someone can say “I accept your offer.” So, if you say something that sounds like the “if” statement above, you may find that a person accepts your offer. But you may also find that they decide to engage in conflict to make their point. Ultimatums, if they’re ever offered, should be made as a method of last resort.Conflict comes with being a human. Sometimes, it is necessary. But there is no reason to manufacture conflict where it serves no one and produces no great outcome. Essential Reading! Get my 3rd book: Eat Their Lunch “The first ever playbook for B2B salespeople on how to win clients and customers who are already being serviced by your competition.” Buy Nowlast_img read more