… have unsubscribed from 8 email lists.


And it’s not even lunchtime.

Like you, I’ve been receiving a ton of holiday sale promotions.

What I’ve noticed is that the ones I tend to unsubscribe from are the people/companies who I rarely hear from otherwise.

For those who have been in touch – especially those who have been sharing useful, no-strings-attached information during the rest of the year – I don’t remove myself.

Selling is fine. But you will sell a lot more – and be invited back – if you give before you take.


… am going upstairs.


At the airport, that is.

When I pick my son Evan up, I will meet him upstairs at “departures,” even though he is arriving.

Why? Because on the Tuesday night before Thanksgiving, the arrivals level will look like an LA freeway at rush hour.

Upstairs, on the other hand, will be very quiet, since by then most planes will have departed. No traffic, no waiting.

My ability to pick up Evan quickly and easily is not because I have a better car or am a better driver. It’s because I am doing the non-obvious … something most people are not.

The same approach applies to your business: You can work harder or you can hope you are smarter. I prefer finding opportunities that are overlooked.


… had a presentation run long.


I was a guest speaker at a virtual event.

My time slot was 60 minutes, but 45 minutes in, thanks to some early tech glitches and audience questions, I could see that I was running long – and I knew there was a hard stop at the top of the hour.

Two options:

#1. Talk really fast
#2. Throw out the less important parts

I chose the second option.

The audience doesn’t know what you may have left out. But they will know if it feels like they are being barraged with too much information.

The point is never to “get through your presentation.”

It’s to share information that participants can use without overwhelming anyone.


… saw a LinkedIn post from a job-seeker.


He wrote: “I am looking for a new role and would appreciate your support.”

Two suggestions…

#1. Don’t wait.

There’s nothing wrong with asking for help. But if the only time I ever hear from you is when you want a favor, you are much less likely to get the result you want.

Stay in touch with all the people you know – now – so when you need help they will be inclined to take action.

#2. Help people who can’t help you.

When you get a request like this, respond. Even if it’s just a one-sentence note of encouragement.

Precisely because this person is in no position to do anything for you (at the moment), when you do more than just hit “delete,” they remember.

It costs you very little and will make a difference to them.


… was invited back.


Last year, I helped organize a social event for a networking group I’ve been involved with.

Today, the group leader emailed to ask if I would be interested in doing it again.

One problem: I have not been a member of that group for nearly a year!

I don’t blame him for not noticing my absence from the monthly meetings. Each Zoom call has more than 100 attendees and it’s hard to notice what isn’t there.

But it served as a pretty good reminder that most people are too busy with their own things to pay attention to you or yours.

Which means that if you hope to keep the word-of-mouth machine working, you need to keep finding ways to stay in touch: developing content, posting on social, attending live events, etc.