Archives for April 2020

Active Listening Skills and Techniques

Active listening is one of the most important skills you need to master as a leader. It’s not just about listening to someone talking, but really hearing what they’re trying to say, which is absolutely necessary to have good communication.

Personally, a technique that I use to listen to others is to sit on my hands. It somehow stops me from trying to talk and interrupt, but that’s just me. Here are some skills and techniques that will help every leader be a better active listener.

Ask Open-Ended Questions 

As an active listener, you need to genuinely want to learn from what the speaker is saying and the best way to do so is by asking questions.

“Asking questions is often necessary to further understand what another is trying to truly say. Ask open-ended questions that allow the speaker to reveal more details to the situation and enlighten you more on the topic.” – Entrepreneur

Avoid asking yes or no questions as much as possible. They don’t provide much value to a conversation. For example, instead of asking something like, “Did you solve the problem?” instead ask, “How did you solve the problem?”

Never Interrupt 

It can be tempting to want to speed up the conversation when you think you know where the speaker is going. However, active listening requires that you let the speaker keep talking uninterrupted—regardless if you think you can speed up the pace by finishing their sentence.

“This can be another difficult step because the brain wants to jump in and solve the problem before the speaker has communicated the entire message. Interrupting shows impatience and disrespect, especially if you interrupt with an argument rather than a question.” – Vistage

You need to show respect for the speaker and let them speak at their own pace and in their own way.

Keep an Open Mind

Judgment ruins active listening almost immediately. Even if you don’t agree with the speaker, you need to keep an open mind and try your best to see things from their point of view.

“If what she says alarms you, go ahead and feel alarmed, but don’t say to yourself, “Well, that was a stupid move.” As soon as you indulge in judgmental bemusements, you’ve compromised your effectiveness as a listener.” – Forbes

Not only do you need to avoid saying anything judgemental, but it’s just as important to avoid thinking judgmental thoughts. As soon as you’ve told yourself that you disagree with the speaker you’ve stopped being an active listener at which point no one will benefit from the conversation.

Don’t Plan Ahead

It can be very tempting to try and plan out in your head how you want to respond to the speaker but don’t. If you’re thinking about what you want to say while the speaker is still talking, you aren’t actively listening anymore.

“Listening demands being fully present and ready to respond to what might get thrown your way. But our listening shuts down when we’re anticipating what might happen next.” – HBR

You want your response to be authentic and the only way to do that is by listening intently to what the speaker is saying. By planning ahead, you will only be able to respond with your own understanding and opinions of the topic, which will communicate to the speaker that their opinions don’t matter.

Summarize to Make Sure You Understand

One of the most important skills in active listening is summarizing what the speaker has said to make sure that you genuinely understand what they are saying.

“During this process, the other person must feel that you are empathizing with them and that you understand and care about their point of view. To really help with this, use techniques such as ‘paraphrasing,’ or repeating back what they have said and asking if you understood correctly or ‘perception checking.’” – Cameron Herold

By paraphrasing and summarizing what the speaker has said, it not only shows that you listened but it also provides the speaker with the opportunity to listen and clarify anything they may need to elaborate on for you to better understand.

Active listening is a skill that’s necessary for everyone to master—especially leaders. Even if you think you are doing it right, there may be some things you didn’t consider? Do you use these techniques to be a better communicator? If not, then it might be time for a refresher.

If you have questions or would like more information, I’d be to help. Please send an email, and my team will get in touch with you!

The Importance of Vacation Time

Vacation time is one of the most important things you can give to yourself and your employees. That’s why I push further than the mediocre two weeks paid vacation that most employers provide. The five weeks of paid vacation that I give, and recommend (on top of government holidays) should be standard practice for all companies, for all employees, from day one.

Here are five reasons why vacation time is so important to you and your business.

Vacation Time Benefits Your Employees’ Physical Health

Vacation time is often thought of as nothing more than simply time off, but it’s more than that. It is time spent rejuvenating your physical health.

“A study found that men at risk for heart disease were 30% more likely to have a heart attack when skipping vacation for five years in a row than those who took a week off each year, but that even just skipping one vacation increased their risk.” – Business Insider

If vacation time helps you stay healthy, then you want to make sure you’re giving your employees enough. You want your team, yourself included, to be healthy so that everyone can thrive at their jobs. So, why not give your staff that time – 25 days a year, in fact. And actually ENCOURAGE them to take it, a couple of days a month at least.

Vacation Time Increases Productivity

The day before a vacation is a day when people are the most productive, actually, it can extend the entire week before. The more days of vacation they have, the more productive days before vacation are. It’s called the “Vacation Effect”, and lots of people talk about it (look it up).

“After a vacation, 64 percent of people say that they are ”refreshed and excited to get back to my job.” It’s a win-win both for employees and organizations alike.” – Psychology Today

“To be sure they take this time off, force them to or they lose it. The idea is to recharge your batteries regularly and not stockpile the time and have a meltdown.” – Cameron Herold

Vacation serves as a hard deadline for employees, which is a major motivator to get things done. With vacations coming up, employees don’t want to waste time, and actually accomplish a  LOT more work than normal.

Vacation Time Improves Sleep Habits

You’re thinking…really? Well, we all know that sleep is necessary to have in order to be productive at work (and life in general). A lack of vacation time actually does affect sleep habits and definitely not in a positive way.

“Researchers say, that vacations can help interrupt the habits that disrupt sleep, like working late into the night or watching a backlit screen before bed. If you have stress from work and you find your sleep is disrupted because of anxiety or tension, take time off and learn to reset your sleep pattern.” – Inc

A vacation provides a reset from bad sleep habits. It interrupts bad habits that affect your quality of sleep – like working late and looking at a screen before bed. For most people, these habits are hard to break, but the complete shift in a schedule that a vacation provides makes it a lot easier.

Gives Employees Opportunities

As a leader, taking vacation time not only sets an important example, but it provides opportunities for your employees to step up while you’re away.

“When senior leaders go on vacation, it gives high potential team members a chance to develop their leadership muscles.” – Forbes

As a leader, taking time away from your work shows an important amount of trust in your employees. You’re giving them the opportunity to make decisions independently and showing them that you value and trust them enough to do that.

Vacation time is necessary for everyone in the workplace and providing enough of it is just as important as that vacation itself. The benefits of vacation time apply to the entire company. So, try it out! Give your employees 25 days to use each year, whether those are sick days, personal days, or them going on a vacation. Trust me you’ll see a HUGE difference.

If you have questions or would like more information, I’d be happy to help. Please send an email, and my team will get in touch with you!

How to Use Influencer Marketing

On social media, people generally trust the influencers they’re following. That means when the influencer endorses a certain service and company, their followers tend to trust that recommendation. You can benefit from influencer marketing if you know how to use it properly.

Here are the most important things you can do to use influencer marketing successfully.

Consider the Influencer’s Following (Numbers)

Numbers play a large role in any kind of marketing. Two of the most important numbers you’ll need to consider when you are using influencer marketing are the influencer’s number of followers and your budget.

“Users with somewhere between 1,000 and 9,999 followers earn just over 30 percent more for their posts (roughly $108). Influencers who have upward of 99,999 followers, though, see their earnings more than double ($240), while users with more than 100,000 followers see their price per post rise the highest – over $763.” – Influence

If you want to appeal to more than one target market, consider splitting your budget between some smaller influencers with different audiences. But – if you already have a clear picture of your avatar and are focused only on marketing only to that avatar, put your budget into one or two larger influencers.

Consider the Influencer’s Audience

The amount of followers the influencer has doesn’t matter if you choose an influencer whose followers are completely out of your target market and not in line with your avatar. Make sure you do your research to figure out the audience of each influencer before making a decision.

“Having a smaller audience allows micro-influencers to bond with the people who follow them more regularly (as compared to a celebrity with millions of fans) via their channel. This makes them appealing to work with for businesses looking to develop personal relationships among their target audience.” – HubSpot

Consider the type of audience and the level of engagement you want when deciding who you want to endorse your service. A smaller influencer might have fans that are a lot more actively involved and engaged, but usually, those types of influencers have a very specific niche. Bottom line is that you have to make sure you do your research and find the right influencer – otherwise you’re wasting your money.

Know the Difference Between a Brand Influencer and Brand Ambassador

A brand influencer is someone you pay to promote your service – so they would charge per post on their timeline and/or stories. Basically like paying for traditional ad placement, just, on social media.

A brand ambassador is given a percentage of the sales that are directly related to the customers they bring in. For example, if you are offering a course – they would have a direct link to promote and they would get a percentage of (or set fee) for anyone who buys through that link.

“Influencer, blogger, brand ambassador, advocate: These terms are used interchangeably, but there are vast differences in the influence they wield, what they will do for a brand and what they get paid.” – Entrepreneur

Make sure that you know the difference between a brand influencer and a brand ambassador when outlining your influencer marketing strategy – as you will need to put different elements into place depending on which is the best fit for your overall marketing strategy.

Know Your Message

Before you do any kind of influencer marketing you need to be very clear about your message. This will allow you to pick the best fit and make sure that the influencer(s) you choose is in line with your brand, your mission, and…you guessed it…your message.

The other element that is important is that you can be clear about what you want their audience to learn about your company throughout your ‘relationship’. This will ensure that this element of your strategy remaining in line with the rest of your advertising strategy. But remember, you want to give them enough room with it to be creative in a way that will appeal to their specific audience but still be relaying your message.

“Gaining social “proof” will help you gain more customer trust. Partner with those who share your values in clever, mutually beneficial ways.” – Cameron Herold

Using social media influencers to increase brand recognition and appeal to potential new customers is a great way to grow your business – just make sure you’ve done your research and approach it the right way

If you have questions or would like more information, I’d be happy to help. Please send an email, and my team will get in touch with you!

How to Make Exit Interviews as Productive as Possible

A good leader asks questions, strives to do better, and takes opportunities to learn wherever possible. One of the best ways to do all these things is through an exit interview.

You want to learn why your employee left, what brought about this bad outcome, and how you can avoid it in the future. An exit interview can teach you all these things as long as it’s done right.

Here are some tips to make your exit interviews as productive as they can be!

Finding Timing That’s Just Right

Timing is everything when it comes to an exit interview. You don’t want to just get information, you want to get the right information, and that means knowing when to do your exit interview and when not to.

“Some experts argue that the most productive moment to conduct the initial EI is halfway between the announcement of an intention to leave and the actual departure—after the initial rush of emotion has died down, but before the employee has checked out mentally.” – HBR

You want to be able to get useful information from the exit interview and that means timing it when emotions get in the way as little as possible. Leaving a job is emotional, that’s unavoidable, but you can still find time to conduct the exit interview after they’ve begun to process leaving, but before they’ve actually left.

Don’t Justify the Problems

During the exit interview, let the employee vent. If they are upset about some policy your company has, don’t justify the policy. Instead, ask the employee how they’d solve it. Asking questions and finding solutions gets you useful information, even if you don’t necessarily agree with the problem.

“The key to conducting an effective exit interview is to create an environment in which the exiting employee is comfortable providing honest feedback.” – The Balance Careers

You want honest information, which will be hard to get if you try to justify the problems your employee is telling you about.

Be a Listener

The exit interview isn’t about what you think of the employee or the job, it’s about finding out what the employee thinks of the employer and the job. It can be tempting to talk about your opinions and feelings towards the job but if you want the exit interview to be productive you have to be able to simply listen.

“The smartest CEOs are vulnerable, open to hearing what they don’t know, and are always trying to learn.” – Cameron Herold

When you start inserting your opinions into the exit interview, the employee might start to feel the need to defend their choice of leaving. When the employee feels the need to defend themselves, they’re going to start closing themselves off and therefore closing off any potentially useful information you might have gotten.

The Follow-Up Questionnaire

Frequency plays an important role in getting honest information. Having another exit interview doesn’t necessarily mean having a face-to-face interview again. Consider instead sending a questionnaire or survey to the employee a couple of months after they’ve left.

“Some companies have the first interview, but also a follow-up interview a few months later. Research has found that employees can change their opinions when given time to reflect. 59% changed their reasons for leaving and 100% gave a reason for leaving in the follow-up interview even if they didn’t give one in the first interview.” – HPPY

Your goal is to get as much honest feedback as possible to make the exit interview productive. By conducting a follow-up questionnaire a couple of months later you’ll get more thought out answers because the employee has had time to process why they left.

Act on the Data

The exit interview itself is only half the work. You need to collect the information learned in these exit interviews, then organize it, distribute it, and learn from it.

“You want to make sure that exit interview data reaches key decision-makers in your organization who can implement changes as effectively as possible.” – Process St.

The goal of the exit interview was to learn and that means sharing the information with the people that need to know. The exit interview isn’t over when the employee walks out the door. It’s about taking that information and improving from it if you can.

The best thing you can do as a leader is to learn and develop. Exit interviews can be an important part of that if they’re done well. You should always want to do better for yourself and your company.

If you have questions or would like more information, I’d be happy to help. Please send an email, and my team will get in touch with you!


Meetings Suck: Turning One Of The Most Loathed Elements Of Business Into One Of The Most Valuable

We all know that meetings suck, right?

You hear it all the time. It’s the one thing that almost everyone in business can agree on.

Except it’s not actually true… 

Meetings don’t suck.

We just suck at running meetings.   

When done right, meetings not only work, they make people and companies better.

In Meetings Suck, world renowned business expert and growth guru Cameron Herold teaches you how to use focused, time effective meetings to help you and your company soar.

This book shows you immediately actionable, step-by-step systems that ensure that you and everyone in your organization improves your meetings, right away.

In the process, you’ll turn meetings that suck into meetings that work. 

In life, we always hear about people who’ve made huge decisions from their gut – without data.Today, I want you to make a decision, not only from your gut, but also from some data.  A decision that is only $12 per employee but will be priceless for your business.

Right now, your gut is telling you something is wrong with your company’s meetings.  You KNOW everyone complains about meetings.

People HATE going to them, they HATE running them, and they really have NO idea which meetings are truly necessary but they hold meetings simply because they think that is what they SHOULD do.

Even some of the smartest CEOs in the world complain about meetings – Elon Musk publicly told employees at Tesla & SpaceX to walk out of meetings if they weren’t being run properly.

I sent Elon a message saying that wasn’t going to fix anything – the key is to fix the root of the problem – NOT continue to ignore why meetings suck.

A Meeting is – Any phone call, video call or occasion where 2 or more people meet to discuss or work-through office topics.

Most employees on average spend 1-2 hours per day in meetings.

And likely, none of those employees – front-line staff or leaders – have had any training on how to attend meetings or participate in them, LET ALONE How to RUN THEM.

Consider this…

If the Average employee spends just 1 Hour per day in meetings – that’s 1/8th of their time.

If the Average employee earns $50,000 per year.

And they’re spending 1/8th of their time in meetings, that means you’re paying $6,250 dollars per year for just ONE employee to attend meetings.

The reality is, employees spend 1/8th of their time – and 1/8th of your company’s payroll – doing something they have literally NO idea how to do.

The Reality is…

95% of employees are booking & leading meetings – and they have NEVER been trained on how to run them.

95% of employees have had NO training on how to show up and participate in the meetings they attend daily.

And 95% of employees and companies have no idea what meetings are even necessary to hold.

Meetings CAN be hugely effective – IF you know how to run them

Meetings don’t SUCK, we just SUCK at running meetings. 

Investing $15 per employee – to help ensure the $50,000 a year you spend on them is an obvious and easy choice.

This could be the most impactful $15 you’ll ever spend and will save the company’s money, time and resources instantly.

Buying a copy of Meetings Suck for 100% of your employees and having them read it this month will have a huge impact on your company’s success.


Free PR: How To Get Chased By The Press Without Hiring A PR Firm

Public relations has always been an essential part of doing business which is probably why you’re shelling out big money to an outside PR firm. But the truth is that you don’t need them. You already have all the necessary tools in-house to do as good a job as the so-called experts. 

Cameron Herold and Adrian Salamunovic have taught thousands of company execs how to exploit free media coverage and ditch these expensive, often ineffective outsiders. 

Cameron & Adrian have also built in-house PR teams, spent decades learning how to generate Free PR and how to leverage public relations to complement their sales and marketing strategy. 

In Free PR, you’ll learn how the media world operates while you gain invaluable insider knowledge and actionable advice on how to: 

  • Build your own in-house PR team
  • Provide effective interviews
  • Score great media coverage for free with just a few easy steps 

Landing public relations coverage for yourself and your company is a powerful tool to help elevate your personal brand. PR is easier to generate than marketing, PR is easier to leverage than marketing and PR is more cost effective than marketing. In other words, Public Relations is more critical than ever in growing your brand and your business. 

You’ve got more passion, commitment, a larger stake, and a deeper understanding of your business than any outside PR firm could ever have. So stop wasting money and take the reins yourself.  Learn the secrets to landing TONS of Free PR for your company.

What they’re saying:

“I think PR is the core for promoting any business. Public relations acquires customers! That’s what’s cool about this book.”

– Kevin O’Leary,  Shark on ABC’s Shark Tank

“The ultimate guidebook for those looking to get press, grow their brand, and get in front of the masses. Free PR is the roadmap you’ve been looking for.”

– Peter Shankman, Founder, Help a Reporter Out (HARO)

“Adrian and Cameron will show you the secrets of getting massive exposure for your business. This book is packed with actionable insights from two guys that actually know how to to do it.”

– Dan Martell,  Serial Entrepreneur & Investor (, Unbounce)

“I told Cameron to write the book on generating free PR. I’m excited to see that he’s finally sharing his secrets with the world. This is a must read for any entrepreneurial company and marketing team.”

– Verne Harnish, Founder of Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO) and author of Scaling Up (Rockefeller Habits 2.0)


Vivid Vision: A Remarkable Tool For Aligning Your Business Around a Shared Vision of the Future

Many corporations have slick, flashy mission statements that ultimately do little to motivate employees and less to impress customers, investors, and partners. 

But there is a way to share your excitement for the future of your company in a clear, compelling, and powerful way and entrepreneur and business growth expert Cameron Herold can show you how. 

Vivid Vision is a revolutionary tool that will help owners, CEOs, and senior managers create inspirational, detailed, and actionable three-year mission statements for their companies. In this easy-to-follow guide, Herold walks organization leaders through the simple steps to creating their own Vivid Vision, from brainstorming to sharing the ideas to using the document to drive progress in the years to come. 

By focusing on mapping out how you see your company looking and feeling in every category of business, without getting bogged down by data and numbers or how it will happen, Vivid Vision creates a holistic road map to success that will get all of your teammates passionate about the big picture. 

Your company is your dream, one that you want to share with your staff, clients, and stakeholders. Vivid Vision is the tool you need to make that dream a reality.


The Miracle Morning for
Entrepreneurs: Elevate Your SELF to
Elevate Your BUSINESS


A step-by-step guide to enjoying the roller-coaster ride of growth — while getting the most out of life as an entrepreneur. A growth-focused approach: The book is divided into three sections, which cover planning for fast growth, building a company for fast growth, and leading for fast growth. Each topic the author covers — from creating a vision for the company’s future to learning how to generate free PR for a developing company — is squarely focused on the end goal: doubling the size of the entrepreneur’s company in three years or less. A down-to-earth action plan: Herold’s experienced-based advice never gets bogged down in generalities or theory. Instead, he offers a wealth of practical tips, including: How to design meetings for maximum efficiency; How to hire top-quality talent; How to grow in particularly tough markets; How to put together a board of advisors — even for a smaller company; How even the busy entrepreneur can achieve a work/life balance.


Hal Elrod’sThe Miracle Morning has helped redefine the mornings and the lives of millions of readers since 2012. Since then, careers have been launched, goals have been met, and dreams have been realized, all through the power of the Miracle Morning’s six Life S.A.V.E.R.S.


Now The Miracle Morning for Entrepreneurs brings you these principles in a whole new light—alongside the Entrepreneurial Elevation Principles and the Entrepreneur’s Elevation Skills. These are essential skills that you need to create a successful business and personal life. Cameron Herold— Bestselling Author and a widely-respected expert on entrepreneurial mindset—brings his wisdom and insight to you using Hal Elrod’s powerful Miracle Morning framework.


The principles and skills you’ll find in this book will help you to channel your passion and achieve balance in a remarkable new way. – Learn why mornings matter more than you think – Learn how to master your own self-leadership and accelerate your personal development – Learn how to manage your energy—physical, mental, and emotional – Learn how to implement Hal Elrod’s invaluable Life S.A.V.E.R.S. in your daily routine – And much more… You’re already an entrepreneur. Now discover how to take your success to the next level by first taking yourself to the next level. The Miracle Morning for Entrepreneurs is your roadmap to masterfully building an empire with a powerful vision, utilizing your areas of personal genius, with the right team at your side.

Start giving your business and your life the very best opportunities for success, right now.

A step-by-step guide to enjoying the roller-coaster ride of growth — while getting the most out of life as an entrepreneur. A growth-focused approach: The book is divided into three sections, which cover planning for fast growth, building a company for fast growth, and leading for fast growth. Each topic the author covers — from creating a vision for the company’s future to learning how to generate free PR for a developing company — is squarely focused on the end goal: doubling the size of the entrepreneur’s company in three years or less. A down-to-earth action plan: Herold’s experienced-based advice never gets bogged down in generalities or theory. Instead, he offers a wealth of practical tips, including: How to design meetings for maximum efficiency; How to hire top-quality talent; How to grow in particularly tough markets; How to put together a board of advisors — even for a smaller company; How even the busy entrepreneur can achieve a work/life balance.