Terrific Insights from Ryan Estis

When you get the opportunity to hear Ryan Estis speak, lock it in on your calendar. In the meantime, subscribe to his blog and twitter feed. I was fortunate to attend the COSE Thinkspot event the other night where Ryan was the keynote. Besides his energy and compelling delivery, he had some terrific insights to share. I was so impacted by what Ryan had to share that I thought I’d pass it on.

1.    There are two questions you should be asking as a small business:
a.    How did I add value today – specifically
b.    How will I be remembered by the people I interacted with today

How I heard this: It’s more than providing our service or product. It’s about
                            making a difference in the lives or businesses of others. This is
                            how we are sustainable and continue to have relevance.

2.    Be remarkable. The definition of Remarkable is: worthy of being remarked upon; so good; so distinct.

How I heard this: Wow! Such a great point. It’s interesting to think about whether
                            we are having such an impact on others that they would talk
                            about it within their spheres of influence.

3.    Every employee you have is watching you.

How I heard this: This really struck me. While I don’t have employees I do work with many business owners who do. And one of the things they don’t necessarily think about is how their actions are being interpreted by their staff. Employees really are watching their leaders. And they are deciding whether to follow the leader based on what they see.

4.    Most small business owners say they want to provide excellent customer service but they don’t define what that is. So, everyone does it their own way which leads to chaos.

How I heard this: Bravo! It is up to the leadership to not only define what excellent customer service looks like but to consistently share that viewpoint with their staff. And hold them to a standard that they are meeting themselves.

5.    In order to sell something to someone you have to help them see that the pain of same is greater than the pain of change.

How I heard this: I just LOVE this! Such a great way of describing a challenge every sales person/small business owner faces. People don’t like change and inertia is one of the biggest enemies we face. As Ryan points out when you can help them see that the pain of change is not as great as the pain they are currently in, they will buy.

6.    There is value in scheduling time to write, read, and learn.

How I heard this: Life is busy. It’s easy to fill our time with other things; things that don’t elevate our businesses. Ryan shared his experience with blogging consistently and how that has made sales easy for him. I’ll tell you what – that re-energized me to get blogging again!

7.    The next generation expects a couple of things – technology, and to be treated like a VIP. Ryan says that you have to understand technology in order to be relevant for the future. And it is the next generation who are the buyers of the future.

How I heard this: We can fight the texting and the seeming rudeness of the millennials but that’s like pushing a rope! They aren’t going anywhere. Meeting them where they are builds respect and trust – both ways.

Ryan said all this and more. And then, as he was wrapping up he suggested we think about the person who had the most impact on us and our path, and if it was possible, to call them and thank them.

I cannot thank my father via the phone since he passed away in 2005. So, I reached out to the best boss I ever had, Dave Westcott, and thanked him. Who can you contact and thank for helping shape who you are? And, what have you learned from reading the wisdom of Ryan Estis?

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