I believe that the oft overlooked company bio is an integral part of anyone’s rise to the top of business.

DO IT WRONG, and risk looking like the weakest link in the company.

DO IT RIGHT, and everyone will wonder why yours is so much better than the CEO’s (and wonder why you’re not the CEO!)

Trust me, you can’t afford to get this one wrong.

I remember when I was first asked to write a company bio. Outwardly I was proud. I felt like I had just been asked to join a exclusive Harvard fraternity known for a bunch of rich kids who “accidentally” murder a townie because they found out he wasn’t rich.

IT FELT INCREDIBLE!

But inwardly, I had questions. I didn’t know the first thing to do! I didn’t even know what ‘bio’ was short for. (I learned much later that it means biography)

Fortunately, my mentor and friend Manfred Dunforth had recently moved into my bonus room while he “got his shit together”. I needed his advice, and luckily for me, he obliged.

It was a rambling conversation that took some surprising interesting twists and turns, but once I got him to focus up, I was able to take two powerful things from our meeting of the minds.

One, older men, no matter how successful, shouldn’t wear jazz shoes no matter where the trends seem to be going.

Secondly, make sure and include a story from childhood where you did some sort of related thing and how that meant you were destined to become what you are today.

And there it was: All I (AND YOU) needed to know about how to write a bio! I was so excited about getting this information, I cried for a solid fifteen minutes. (OK, THIRTY!)

Once the crying spell slowed, I quickly sprinted to my Words Typer 5000 and crafted a tale about how I used to “borrow” all the neighborhood kids’ toys, paint them a new color, and sell them back to them at a hefty markup–WHEN I WAS THREE.

For you, it may be that you loved eating the paint off of HotWheels back when it was all lead based, and that set you on course for your inevitable rise to head designer at HotWheelies, the Chinese rival of HotWheels known for making the same cars at a fourth of the quality at an eighth of the price.

Or maybe you might have had a weight problem as a child and that’s why you do so well in the diabetes industry. Whatever the case, if this story isn’t a part of your new bio, YOU HAVE FAILED AT BIOS.

People need only to think one thing after reading your bio: This guy is not just good, but he’s been training (at his own expense!) for his role at the company since he was a three-year-old in a business suit.

Traveling is the hallmark of every successful career in business. You quite simply must be traveling if you every want to be the best business man ever.

This can present a problem for some–especially the ones who don’t believe in computers, have a fear of flying, or the unlucky ones who have unfairly found themselves on a bullshit “no-fly list” (LOOOONG story).

BUT DO NOT WORRY BLOG READERS, I’ve found an amazingly simple way to get all the credit you desire as a successful and important “business traveler”, without actually having to go into the backroom and have government officials point and laugh at your penis each time you fly.

Here it is: It’s not as important to actually travel on business, as it is to BE SEEN as a business traveler.

I’d like to introduce you to my USA Today Strategy for Winners™. It’s quite possibly my simplest and most effective strategy yet for minimizing office rivals and skyrocketing you to the top of business.

My strategy is based on the fact that when humans carry a USA Today newspaper, everyone who sees them assumes they just got back from a business trip. You see, the only place to get one of these USA Today papers is on the floor outside of a hotel room. EVERYONE KNOWS THIS.

When you make it clear you just traveled for business, in the minds of your rivals you have just done something incredibly important that they didn’t do!

And when your colleagues see you holding this super thin newspaper, they’ll be pretty sure you just traveled on business, filling their brains instantly with unanswerable questions like:

“What sort of important thing was he just doing?”

“Why did he get to go to StratCon? Do people not hate him anymore?”

or, “How did he even get on the plane? I thought it was illegal for him to travel?”

FACT: Businessmen constantly compare themselves to their colleagues. It’s what we do.

When you have a crisp new USA Today under your arm, you make sure your rivals are comparing themselves TO YOU as they wonder why they weren’t invited to that imaginary super important meeting that only happened in their head.

Meanwhile, you’ll just be holding a paper and the upper hand.

If I have learned anything about Winners at Business™, it’s that they know how to use an internet to spread their ideas so other less successful people can link to them and talk about how smart and insightful the author is.

If you’re not doing this I just have one question: WHY ON EARTH ARE YOU NOT DOING THIS!

The simplest way to start is by creating something called a “blog”. On this blog, make sure and write internet articles with headlines so powerfully written that business leaders have no choice but to read them. Once you pair your headline with an unnecessarily graphic image of a controversial subject you just sit back and watch as the business part of the internet goes Krazy.

Luckily for me (and you!) I discovered long ago the secret formula for generating incredibly powerful blog post headlines: Write about what something much more interesting than your actual job, taught you about your job.

OH, I FORGOT THE BEST PART! (No, I didn’t. Here it comes!) You can repeat this strategy basically, forever.

Some business writers don’t agree with me (I’m looking at you Seth Godin!) But, I believe this is the most powerful idea in business today.

To show how this looks in practice, I would like to present several examples I literally just wrote:

What the song “Cherry Pie” taught me about Human Resources.

What I learned about Business Processes from the AIDS Epidemic.

Six things I learned about Infrastructure from a Buffalo Chicken and Ranch Hot Pocket.

Who could resist reading these?. Answer: NO ONE. And like that, I have inspired and delighted everyone in business who reads words.

OH NO!! WHAT ABOUT THE ARTICLE PART!!!? Relax, take a deep breath, stop freaking out. Don’t worry about the actual article. All you need to do is write a couple of loosely thrown together strings of business keywords that may or may not resemble actual sentences. Businessmen are way too busy to read articles. They just post them on something called a “Linkedin“, so their colleagues can not read them too.

Listen, most of what we learn in business is not super inspiring or interesting. If you can get people thinking they can learn something about business from interesting things like a Dung beetle, a refurbished Sex Robot, or (my current obsession) Riverdancing–they might just think for a moment that what they’re doing is a lot more interesting than what they’re actually doing.

And in the business part of the internet–that’s how you win.

I’ve recently discovered an amazing way to retain the hearts, minds (and revenue!) of customers after an untimely and public mistake.

Let’s say hypothetically, a brief check on a fantasy football trade takes your eye briefly away from the siren on your desk that warns of computer hackings.

Yes, confidential customer information was released to a group of Somali pirates. That happened. But what didn’t happen was a change in my values while making this mistake. And believe it or not, that’s all the matters!

REMEMBER THIS! Because that’s the part I want Winners at Business™ to take away from today’s post.

Mistakes happen, but values don’t change.

In a recent study in a magazine, scholars found that:

…when a business makes a mistake, customers tend to be upset not because they’re trust has been completely shattered, or even that their personal information is now being used by known terrorists. NO–they are upset because they are afraid that this business’s values are now–somehow–different.

Now, let’s take this fact, and regain the trust of those customers by releasing a templated press release (free download here!) like this:

“We are sorry for this grave mistake and apologize for any sort of identity theft that may be happening to you as you read this press release. While we recommend you check all of your bank accounts immediately, we’d also like to assure our customers that this mistake is no indication whatsoever of a shift in core values from ‘good’ to ‘bad’. Quite the opposite: Our values remain as solid and unwavering as ever.”

When you make this sort of public declaration–as easy at is–it assures your customers that this was just a blip in performance and not a “fundamental personal flaw”. And by reminding them that we both have the same sort of values–AKA “the good ones“–they’ll have no problem continuing their relationship with you. At the end of the day, isn’t that what matters most? The having of good values?

1. Future Planning
What’s so great about the future? It always looks better than the present. That’s why your business needs a bunch more future, and alot lot less of the problems of the here and now. When you plan for the future nothing ever looks bad, including you.

2. Using the Social Medias
Social media is an amazing tool for shaping our business lives in ways that a decade ago were unimaginable. If I wanted to make sure a competitor knew I just had a successful meeting a decade ago, I had to either fax them or speak actual words to their faces. This is an amazing development, winners are getting on the boat.

4. Deflecting Criticism
Criticism feels horrible and it let’s your colleagues think you are a flawed business man. You will make mistakes and misteps in business, just make sure they “weren’t your fault” and you’ll be where you want to be.

5. Creating New, more Powerful Business Words
Creating words that mean more than one word is key in business today. The business world today is like a foreign country with it’s own language and customs. Speak the language well and they’ll not only think you live there, they’ll think you were born there.

6. Using Acronyms
Using unnecessary and superfluous acronyms is a sure fire way to ensure that you know what you’re talking about, and the rest of the room doesn’t. Don’t worry! No one will ever ask you what something means for fear of looking stupid.

7. Staying at work later than everyone
Even if you’re buying christmas presents for your family, or mining for extra dubloons on Gem Warz. Being in the office means you care more than everyone one else, and when it comes to that 2% cost of living raise, you’ll be first on the list if they decide to do it this year.

8. Getting your Job on™
Sure, it’s fine if you are “creating a document to track spending trends in Excel”. But consider how powerful that same statement becomes when you tell your bosses you’re “Getting your trend tracking on“?

9. Talking about “The Cloud”
Customers are in power these days, and they have been convinced that this magical cloud is going to solve all their problems. Whether it is or isn’t is of no concern to you. The fact the they believe it will is. And that’s why you better be talking about it all the time.

10. Using ‘Problems at Home’ as an Excuse for keeping the workplace in a constant state of fear
By telling our employees that we’re having vague “problems at home” as an excuse for “all the yelling” not only will you get the great results that come from berating our employees, but you’ll be able to gain empathy for why you’re “doing all the yelling”. Leaving you free to continue keeping the workplace in a state of fear and intense productivity.

Those who rise in the ranks of the business world do one thing well: They find a way to position themselves as something called a “thought leader”. If you think they got that status without giving mind-expanding speeches at important regional conferences, you need to take a long awkward look at yourself in that wall of mirrors in your foyer.

How do you think that Manfred Dunforth or Noah Wylie got to be the luminaries they are today? By giving passable speeches to their coworkers about business stuff? WHAT A HORRIBLE GUESS.

No, they accepted any public speaking opportunity they could find, and then kicked each one IN THE TEETH by delivering expertly crafted Speech-splosions™.

Right now, you’re probably saying to yourself, “But I could never do that! It’s gonna take forever! I’ve got a thing I’ve got to do!”

Well, do you have five minutes? Thought so.

Here’s all you need to remember, “It’s time to re-invent ____________.”

A recent study concluded that over 99% of slideshare presentations, TED speeches, and company picnic T-shirts begin with these same 4 and a half words. There’s a reason for that. It doesn’t need many details for a large group to get excited by it, and its incredibly simple to bang out on your typewriter in 4 seconds flat without much thought. And, oh yeah, it’s effective as hell.

Here’s how to get that first speech done. (Start your timer.)

First, write the sentence, “It’s time to reinvent”. Next, think about what industry you are in. (For example, “I’m in cellphone kiosk sales”)

Lastly, put the answer to that question at the end of that first sentence. Resulting in: “It’s time to reinvent cell-phone kiosk sales”. Now, add an exclamation point–and like that–you’ve written your first sentence in under a minute! Nice job buddy!

For the rest of the speech, simply list everything wrong with your industry and put the words “It’s time to change” in front of it. Before you know it, you’ll have a 2-3 minute speech (depending on your industry) ready to be videogrammed and uploaded into an internet portal website player for the business world to consume and blog about.

Speeches do a great job getting people excited about broad concepts. BUT, they’re not great about giving specific marching orders to attendees about their particular situations. (That’s what “breakout sessions” are for!) Take advantage of this and keep ALL of that detail out.

Excuse me? What’s that? Did you say an organizer of one of the smaller TED conferences is on the phone?

YOUR WELCOME.

Got a great question from “Conflicted”, Tyler TX.

I am in constant conflict with a co-worker. We are on the same level “in title”, but I’m much better looking. While she has a great personality, the only glaring defect I can see as a flaw would be a mole on her face that is shaped like the state of Rhode Island. It’s kinda gross if you look at it very closely. But you have to get VERY close to get grossed out. Is it wrong to make fun of her with my boss and make up fun nicknames like The Mole? or even Jackie the Mole Face Asshole?

Winning: Wow, great question! I think that seems fair. The trick will be positioning yourself as more than just a name caller. Perhaps a better way to approach would be to print up a flyer for a Nazi Book Club that “happens” to have her name on it as the organizer. That way your hands are “clean”. Plus, I’m not sure people call women ‘assholes’ generally. Keep up the good work!

And another fantastic one from “Dan”, Phoenix, AZ.

There’s a lady I work with, who really loves her cat. Which is cool by me, to each his own I always say. But she smells like a cat too! It’s really getting in the way of my work and distracting me and my anger towards her is causing hives now. Would it be rude to spray her in the face repeatedly with Febreze? Or is that the sort of thing I should leave a note on her desk about?

Winning: Fantastic question Dan! While Febreze is an incredibly effective product, I wouldn’t suggest attacking her with it. I do think it’s fair to buy her a bottle, and attach a note to it. But I’d suggest you tell her something a little less abrasive, like, “the whole office thinks you smell like cat” on the note. You don’t want to take the heat or create bad blood with a cat lady. In my experience they are a very volatile bunch. Very nice and sweet on the outside, but on the inside they are a cauldron of hate, that blames the opposite sex for a good portion of their failures. PROCEED WITH CAUTION. Good luck!

If you really want to get across the idea that you’re doing something very vigorously and excitedly, a simple way to let the entire office know is by using my Getting Your Business On™ strategy.

Are you writing a proposal, or are you “Getting your proposal on“?

I’d much rather my co workers know that I was “Getting my staple on” rather than just “Collating some stuff”.

Sure, it’s fine if you are “creating a document to track spending trends in Excel”. But consider how powerful that same statement becomes when you tell them you’re “Getting your trend trackin’ on“?

Is Saul in accounting “Doing my expense reports”? Or is he “Getting his accounting on“? I, for one, hope he’s taking the latter route.

Do you think my boss is going to give the next high-profile project to someone who just “Does his job”?–Not a chance. NO, He’s going to give it to the guy who is known to “Gets his job on“!

What matters more and more in today’s innovation-driven business climate is “How” you do things, and less and less about what you’re actually “Doing”.

That leaves us with two choices when it comes to our respective paths in the business world. Do you want to be the guy who gets everything he’s asked to do “on” and take your rightful place at the top? Or would you like to be the guy who does his job, never gets a raise, stays in a loveless marriage and spends all of his spare time yelling at the neighbors kids when they get anywhere near his yard?

I know which way I’m going. Do you?

Business jargon is an incredibly powerful form of communication in the business. These words are an effective way to speak with like-minded businessmen and they have the added power of showing those people that you know what the hell you’re talking about.

Alone these words have their own power. But imagine for a moment what would happen if they came together in a glorious union?

I’ll tell you what happens. Fireworks. And not the legal kind. I’m talking about the dangerously explosive ones that everyone wants, but no one’s parents let them have unless they live in or near South Carolina.

What’s most amazing about this word combination is how the power of both of the words are multiplied when placed together, resulting in something I call (and have trademarked) Mega Wordz™. This is just as easy to use as a regular business word, just two to three times as powerful.

Delivering a “Presentation” has the potential to change hearts and minds. While giving a “Proposal” can bring in millions of dollars in billings. Consider the power then, when you deliver a Presen-Posal™ to a prospective client!

A “Spreadsheet” is a great way to compile date on just about any facet of business. While a “Memorandum” is a great way to announce details of the company picnic effectively. But what would happen if you sent out a SpreadoRandum™? I’ll tell you. The whole company not only knows what to bring, but they know what everyone has brought to the picnic for thirty years!

I first discovered this phenomenon in 1992 when I combined the words “Roladex” and “Day Planner” into the Mega Word™ “PlanaDex” offhandedly at the Lake Havasu “MindStorm”. Needless to say, that wasn’t the last time I used the technique.

Another important point I would like to cover is the power of trademarking these new explosive word combinations we create. When you trademark these new words, you now have the added advantage of being able to sue the pants off your coworkers (even your boss!) for trademark infringement.

If that doesn’t put you in the position of power you’re looking for in your current job, then it might be time to look for another job strategy. Or should I say Jobrategy™?

See what I did there?

Every room has it–The smartest person in it. That person who interjects key insights into conversations, the one who knows what we need to do moving forward, or that guy who can explain what numbers are.

If you’re like me then you want to be that person–in every room you enter, whether it be a keynote speech at a regional conference, or the bathroom of Clux Chicken and Pancakes.

One thing we know is that there has to be the smartest person in a room. And while it pains me to admit this in a public forum, no matter what you do, you can’t be that person all the time.

But all is not lost.

You just need to have a highly effective strategy in your Workplace Toolbag™ for knocking that asshole down a peg, and evening the score a bit. I’d like to share that strategy with you today.

1) Thanks.
2) Smart.
3) Guy.

I call it: Three Magic Words To Knock Smart People Down a Peg™.

In order to be the smartest guy in the room they have to say something to get the title. And when they do, these three words take all the power from that person in an instant. Once you deliver them (in order), the whole room will immediately be against the elitist, hyper-intellectual showoff who just uttered these wise words. This creates a bond in the room focused solely on hating this gentleman’s brain–as opposed to taking in their clearly articulated, well thought out point.

It doesn’t completely diffuse his wisdom, but it does ground him a bit. More importantly, it doesn’t allow him to get ahead as much as he should be able to. Even if he’s the smartest person in the world, with this little strategy he won’t be THAT smart–and that’ll be all because of you.

Who’s the smart guy now?

(Hint: It’s You)

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