Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Seek What Is Good and Praiseworthy

I subscribe to a lot of stuff. One of the best things I subscribe to is Perry Marshall's newsletter. He's one of those folks that provides inspiration on one hand and a long to-do list on the other.

Today, for no good reason, I received the email reprinted below (with permission). The text in bold is my emphasis to highlight the most important piece of this.

If I could double-bold one line, it would be this: "The email your customers get from you may be the only positive, encouraging email they get from anybody all day."

Think about that.

On Monday and today, the stock market took some major hits. But on both days there were stocks reaching all-time highs.

Remember, the difference between average and spectacular is extremely small. Don't join the doom-and-gloomers. Be the person you want to spend time with!
To: Karl Palachuk
Subject: Memo to Renaissance Club Members


This morning I had breakfast with a friend. We had important stuff we needed to talk about today.

There was a TV above and a few feet behind him, a constant stream of b-a-a-a-d news (the Fed has to bail out AIG, financial institutions are collapsing, yada yada) and I had to get up and walk over and turn the volume down just so we could have a conversation.

That, my friend, is a snapshot of what all of us have to fight every day.

Gloom. Doom. Negativity. Bad news. Failures. Collapses. Economic woes. Uncertainty. Drowning out conversations that really matter.

The world is awash in this dreariness.

Oh yeah, and glib promises by professional politicians: "Vote for me and I'll fix it for you."

You will accomplish NOTHING positive by focusing on ANY of this. It will only weaken and distract you.

Nor will it help you to dwell on the problems that are going on in your particular industry. That only reinforces the status quo.

If you've followed me for any length of time, you know I have a cynical streak. I look at the world through a jaundiced eye. I've been a mark on more than one occasion and I've always got my radar on for the con man. I'm able to detect the fly in the ointment.

Being that way, I have to give my head a shake as much as anyone. I easily get sucked into the vortex of badness - just ask my wife. Or ask Bryan. They know.

I have to always remind myself that wherever there is chaos and uncertainty, there IS opportunity.

And... yes there may be things to criticize but there are also things to be praised. There is much around us that is GOOD and praiseworthy. Nobody's going to be inspired to focus on the good stuff if they're just watching the news.

More than likely, if there's anything good to be said, it's going to have to be said by YOU. If your employees or partners are going to hear an encouraging word from anyone today, they'll probably have to hear it from YOU.

The email your customers get from you may be the only positive, encouraging email they get from anybody all day. As such it will stand out.

Light and dark cannot occupy the same space at the same time. I'm at a Strategic Coach meeting today, where Lee Brower said, "Grateful kids do not commit suicide. Grateful husbands and wives do not get divorced."

Thanks for that reminder, Mr. Brower.

Before you're done reading this email, I'd like you to write down 5 things you're thankful for, or accomplishments you're proud of. I would like two of them to be something that's happened in the last 24 hours.

Then I'd like you to make one resolution about how you're going to encourage more of the same kind of positive victory to happen - what step you're going to take.

Finally: I'd like you to think of ONE thing that's good, that nobody else is recognizing enough, and I want you to communicate it to your customers. Something that gives them hope!

So in the spirit of that, I'd like to leave you with something from my own world. The positive thing that I'm seeing is, the stuff that's going on around us is pounding the nonsense out of peoples' marketing efforts. And I am seeing many of my top students experiencing MAJOR successes.

One business is tripling this year and has had to break their lease to move to a new space. Bryan and I are seeing record levels of Renaissance Club members, as people who MUST make their marketing dollars work are investing in the education necessary to ensure that they get smart.

I'm observing as one guy - who's in the very worst part of the mortgage market - has watched his proud business literally disintegrate during the last year and is courageously taking back ground that he lost, completely reinventing himself and changing the entire way that he interfaces with his customers.

Yesterday I got an email from him saying he's been eating, drinking and breathing AdWords all during this past weekend (during the flooding that was going on in Chicago he had little else to do) and the whole thing is starting to scream.

He can't wait for the Bobsled Run to start.

He will rise from the ashes and will be stronger, nimbler, and have more self respect and confidence. This too shall pass. He knows that and is busy make sure that what comes next is indeed good.

My friend, there is opportunity all around us. It just takes a positive lens of expectancy and a KNOWLEDGE that those opportunities exist. May we all have eyes to see them.


Perry Marshall

Reprinted with Permission. For more information, check out

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