Predicting the Future, by Joel Block

Did you ever notice how some people always know when the light is going to turn green while sitting at a red stoplight? Do you think maybe that they are looking side-to-side for the predictor about when the green light is going to turn red going in a cross direction? The same in business, there are some people who just are more in touch with signals and signs that point to trends and activities that are about to take place.

Driving is a great example of being predictive and looking for signs that indicate trouble or that help to change your strategy. There are clear rules in driving. One should stay a certain distance from another car in driving. However, sometimes cars do not apply their brakes evenly and they will jerk on their brakes a lot like in business sometimes people do not do things in the smartest way. When you are behind that kind of driver, maybe the best strategy is to look at brake lights of a car ahead of him so you can get a sense of when the slowdowns are coming. Business people need to develop signs of their own that are similar to the kinds of signs that drivers work toward or use. Similarly, traffic signals and the way that you can predict when a light is going to turn red based on the yellow or when a light is going to turn green based on the crossing red. What are the signs you are looking for?

When you come to CreditScape, I’ll be talking about some of these predictors in helping you navigate a changing business environment. With more metrics than ever before available, and the adage of “doing more with less in credit” becoming a reality for most businesses, attending an event like CreditScape will help arm you with tools to do your job better. Visit www.CreditScapeConference.com for more information. I hope to meet you there.

Joel Block is a consultant and long-time venture capitalist and hedge fund manager (gobbledygook for “professional investor”) who is based in the San Fernando Valley area of Los Angeles. He will speak on Managing Change in Your Credit Deparment at CMA’s Spring CreditScape Summit on April 4-5, 2018. For more information about the event, visit www.CreditScapeConference.com.

How to Use Influence Skills to Increase Efficiency and Gets Results, by Dan Goldes

How do you move people to action in order to increase efficiency? How do you get results from others without destroying relationships? These are burning questions in most organizations.

One thing is clear: the ability to influence people is not something you must be born with, but something you can learn.

Think about the best influencers in your life: clients, or people you’ve worked for, worked with, or even supervised. What made them great influencers? Was it their ability to ask questions and really listen to your answers? Did they paint a picture of the future that you found appealing and wanted to be part of? Were they able to convey their thoughts on a topic efficiently and directly and then invite your input as well?

Effectively using influence skills means learning some new behaviors – or, in some cases, refocusing behaviors your already use in order to be more efficient. Influence behaviors fall into three categories: push behaviors, pull behaviors, and push/pull behaviors.

Many people are well-versed in push behaviors, which have to do with stating your needs directly. Others are more comfortable with pull behaviors, with which you draw information out of the other party. Far fewer effectively use push/pull behaviors, which both increase commitment and move people toward action.

Most people have a default: a set of behaviors they use over and over because they work (or, often, because that’s all they know). The most effective influencer, though, is one who can pick and choose the best behavior for that moment, much as an artist decides which brush to use for each section of a painting. Using influence skills well, then, means being able to assess a situation in advance, think about the appropriate behaviors, try them, and pivot as necessary.

Planning for influence can’t be overlooked. While spur-of-the-moment opportunities to use influence skills do come up, far more often we know we’re heading into a meeting or making a phone call during which we want to influence the outcome. The investment in spending a few minutes thinking about what you want to get out of the situation, what you think the other party wants, and which of the influence behaviors you’ll use is well worth the effort. Does it take a little more time? Yes. Does it require you to change how you approach these situations? Probably. But the confidence that comes from having a plan – even if it changes mid-stream – can’t be overstated. Confident influencers are effective influencers.

Learning new behaviors often makes people anxious. But the payoff in developing influence skills is increased efficiency and better relationships, which will serve you now and in the future.

I will go into much greater detail about this during my interactive keynote presentation at the upcoming CreditScape Summit, April 12 in Garden Grove, CA.

Dan Goldes is a facilitator, trainer, and speaker based in San Francisco. He will speak on Influence Skills at CMA’s Spring CreditScape Summit on April 12. For more information about the event, visit www.CreditScapeConference.com

Dan Goldes to Deliver Keynote Address at Spring CreditScape

Keynote speaker Dan Goldes will present “The Influence Edge: Increasing Efficiency with Influence Skills” in an interactive keynote workshop at the upcoming CreditScape Spring Summit, April 12, 2017 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, Garden Grove, CA. The keynote discussion will fit in well with the event’s theme of how to create efficiency and reduce costs in the credit department.

 

The CreditScape Spring Summit, powered by United TranzActions, features one packed day of workshop training, expert practical and legal advice, and networking with other credit professionals, designed to give you insight on areas where you can make improvements in your company’s credit operations.

 

More information about the event, including a complete schedule, will be available soon.

 

To register, click here.