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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

To Shove People Is To Love People

The greatest gift you can give someone is to shove them over the wall.

I remember the exact moment this happened to me.

I was twenty-two years old.
I was finishing the manuscript for my first book.
I was working full time as a furniture salesman to make ends meet.

I got a call from the president of a local Rotary Club. He asked if I could come give a speech to his group. Being just out of college, I replied, “What the hell is a Rotary Club?”

I reluctantly agreed.

By the time I was finished, I’d never sweat more in my life. My hands trembled as I clenched the ten pages of notes that I never even looked at once.

But when I asked if there were any questions, a ninety-year-old retired surgeon named Harold raised his hand.
“Scott, do you have a job?”

“I sell couches.”

They thought that was hilarious.

Not a laugh line.

After we adjourned, Harold pulled me aside and said a four-letter word:

“Quit.”

That was a gift. A shove moment. An interaction that made my path brighter.

So I took his advice and never looked back.

Sometimes we need people to shove us.

To help us see something we’re too close to ourselves to notice.
To applaud our risk, elevate our hope and provoke our decision.
To believe in us more than we believe in ourselves.

To shove people is to love people.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
Who have you shoved this week?

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* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Publisher, Artist, Mentor
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

“After investing in your mentoring program, I've become centered on who I am and what I have to offer. Now, I am attracting clients I want to work with. Life is great and I just wanted to thank you from the bottom of my heart."

--Melanie Jatsek, Diet Busters


Rent Scott's brain today.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Carry Nametags, Not Guns

I often wear multiple nametags.

One on each layer of clothing.

Not just for consistency purposes, but also for safety purposes.

It’s a dangerous world out there. Should I run into trouble, should I encounter somebody whose behavior is threatening, or should I confront an individual who needs to calm down, it’s always good to know I can simply open my jacket and say:

“We got a problem here?”
I remember getting into a fender bender once. The guy that I hit leaped out of his car, charged toward my window and starting yelling at me. He made accusations that I was drunk and stupid and didn’t know how to drive.

I didn’t move.
I didn’t say a thing.
I just stayed calm, stared him right in the eye and let him finish.

He huffed back to his car to get his insurance information. About a minute later, he returned a bit calmer. Noticing my nametag, he said, “I’m sorry Scott – I may have overreacted back there.”

That’s my weapon of choice: I don’t pack heat – I pack friendliness.

Carry nametags, not guns.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
What do you carry?

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* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Publisher, Artist, Mentor
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Never the same speech twice.

Now booking for 2012!

Watch The Nametag Guy in action here!

Monday, November 28, 2011

What's Your Rorschach Test?

Everyone I meet responds to the nametag a little differently.

I was at the park. A guy told me that he would never want to wear a nametag, as it would ruin his lifelong dream of becoming a spy.

I was at a potluck. When I was introduced to the host, he asked if I had any extra nametags. I said yes. He wore it all night.

I was at a downtown deli. On the way out, a man pointed at me, said, “Nice name!” then kept on walking.

I was at an outdoor concert. A cop stopped me. He stared at my nametag, looked me straight in the eye, squinted and then kept walking.

I was at a baseball game. When I bought a soda at the concession stand, the volunteer at the counter said, “Scott, we’re glad you're here!”
I was walking across the street. A monk in an orange robe asked, “Scott, have you heard of Krishna?” I said yes. He smiled.

I was at a coffee shop. I met a toddler while waiting in line. She pointed to my nametag, so I told her my name was Scott. Utterly confused, she asked, “Why?”

Everyday, each of these interactions is a mini Rorschach test.

It’s an indicator of perception.
It’s an insight into personality.
It’s an implication of preferences.

And it is frighteningly accurate. Considering I’ve run this test tens of thousands of times, for more than a decade; you’d be amazed what you can learn about somebody simply based on the way they respond to a nametag.

I know that if they crack a joke immediately, they’re cool people. I know that if they say hello out the window of their car, they’re fun people.

But.

I know that if they roll their eyes and look at me like an alien, they’re insecure people. I know that if they try to rip my nametag off in a public venue, they’re jerky people. Instant analysis.

The nametag is my constant. It’s my filter. It’s how I judge people.

And I think each of us needs something like this. Something small, repeatable and portable that helps us make sense of the people we meet.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
What’s your Rorschach?

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* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Publisher, Artist, Mentor
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Never the same speech twice.

Now booking for 2012!

Watch The Nametag Guy in action here!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Proof That Airport Security Isn't Secure

Going through airport security with a nametag is a fascinating experience.

One time a particularly cranky and compliant agent asked if my nametag was embroidered onto my shirt. Just for fun, I told her that I wore it because if I died, the police would have an easier time identifying the body.

Wrong thing to say.

She stared at me, emotionless, for five seconds – then told me I had been randomly selected for addition screening.

Woops.

Meanwhile, two weeks later I was traveling through the same airport. When they called my boarding group, I approached the gate to scan my ticket. And right as the machine beeped, the agent stopped me abruptly, pointed to my chest and asked:
“Hang on, why does your nametag say Scott?”

“Um. Because that’s my name…?”

“Really. Then can you explain why your boarding pass says Kurt?”

“What?”

“Sir, your boarding pass says ‘Kurt Gransberg.’”

“Who the is that?”

“You tell me.”

“I don’t know. I’ve never heard that name in my life.”

Unbeknownst to me – and unbeknownst to the astute staff of the Transportation Security Administration – I had cleared three security checkpoints wearing a nametag that didn’t match the name on my ticket.

They made me exit the terminal, check in again, get in line again, go through security again – and refused to hold the plane for me.

I ended up missing my flight.

And they say that our safety is their priority.

Horseshit.

Their priority is to violate the fourth amendment.
Their priority is to humiliate and grope harmless people
Their priority is to reduce our liberty a little more each day.
Their priority is to protect the assets of the airline industry.
Their priority is to promote the illusion of safety and security.
Their priority is to convince us that they’re actually doing something to protect us.

If you see something, say something?

Well, I see something.

And I’m saying something.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
How do you give people proof?

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For a list called, "18 Lessons from 18 People Smarter Than Me," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Publisher, Artist, Mentor
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

“After investing in your mentoring program, I've become centered on who I am and what I have to offer. Now, I am attracting clients I want to work with. Life is great and I just wanted to thank you from the bottom of my heart."

--Melanie Jatsek, Diet Busters


Rent Scott's brain today.

Friday, November 18, 2011

The Power of Proof

I almost got kicked out a wedding for wearing a nametag.

Let me explain.

I was eating an appetizer, minding my own business. When out of nowhere, the bride noticed me and started marching in my direction. And she was wearing her crazy face.

“Why are you wearing a nametag to my black tie wedding?”

“Oh, I’m Jason’s friend. I always wear a nametag.”

“Really?”

“Really.”

“That’s so weird. Wait a minute. Have you heard about that guy who wears a nametag all the time?”

It could be someone else, right?
Meanwhile, my friends are trying not to spit out their drinks.

“Well, as far as I know, I’m the only person in the world doing this. Is it possible that I’m the guy you heard about?”

“Oh trust me Scott – it’s not you. This guy is crazy. I even heard a rumor that he has a nametag tattooed on his chest.”

What would you have done in this situation?

And so, in the middle of her own wedding, I unbuttoned my tuxedo shirt and said:

“You mean he’s got a tattoo like this?”

In eleven years, that may have been the funniest reaction I’ve seen.

Poor girl. The color of her face matched her dress.

But I started thinking to myself – as security dragged me away – that running through her mind was one of two thoughts:

1. That guy is committed.
2. That guy should be committed.

I’ll let you decide which one.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
How do you give people proof?

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For a list called, "18 Lessons from 18 People Smarter Than Me," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Publisher, Artist, Mentor
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

“After investing in your mentoring program, I've become centered on who I am and what I have to offer. Now, I am attracting clients I want to work with. Life is great and I just wanted to thank you from the bottom of my heart."

--Melanie Jatsek, Diet Busters


Rent Scott's brain today.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

What Smart Entrepreneurs Know About Engaging Their Customers

Engagement is the new marketing.

How people experience you, plus how people experience themselves in relation to you, is now what determines your success.

Straight from my column on monthly column on American Express Open Forum, here’s what smart entrepreneurs know about engaging their customers:
1. Master the power of personalization. If your customers wore nametags, would you give them better service? Sure you would. Names reduce the distance between people. Today, my flight attendant noticed my nametag and said, “Scott, I wish all my passengers wore nametags, that way I wouldn’t have to say sir!” Makes sense. With a nametag, it’s an unmasking. It assures you’re no longer just another face in the crowd. It humanizes you. And it makes it easier for people treat you with dignity, respect and compassion.

Sadly, most organizations miss this. They obsess over offering better customer service, but fail to see the big picture about the actual relationship. Truth is, the purpose of a nametag isn’t to enable customers to tattle on someone who gives poor service. The purpose of nametag is to help you become better friends with customers, that way, better service happens naturally. Familiarity doesn’t breed contempt—it brings people back.

2. Lower the threat level. I was meeting my friends for sushi once and they invited a girl named Sandra, a friend of a friend who was passing through town. When we met, she thanked me for wearing a nametag. “It’s just so non-threatening,” she said. Interesting.

How do you lower the threat level when you meet people? With most strangers, you’re starting with negative balance. You’re operating from a deficit position. It’s just the posture of the masses. People have been sold, scammed, conned, manipulated and used too long—and they’re tired of it. But a nametag takes a few bricks out of the wall. A nametag immediately and intentionally disqualifies me from people’s fears.

3. Trust is a function of self-disclosure. The more you reveal about yourself, the more likely people are to trust you. That’s a basic tenant of human communication. But you don’t need books to know how trust works. That’s what the nametag proved: Strangers trusted me more once they knew my name. Not that much more, but there was enough additional trust to be noticeable. People recognized my willingness to stick myself out there—albeit in a small, simple way—and as a result, perceived me as being a more trustworthy person.

But it was weird. I didn’t really do anything. Just wore a nametag that said, “Scott.” And yet, people would tell me things. Personal things. I’ll never forget the time I sat down next to an older guy at the train station. He noticed my nametag and said hello. I did the same. He then proceeded to tell me every single detail about his wife’s schizophrenia. And I was happy to listen, but the whole time I kept thinking to myself, “Sir, why are you telling me all this?” Simple: He felt like he already knew me.

4. Enable reciprocity. I was in a cupcake store in Australia. When the cashier rang me up, I clumsily grabbed all the coins in my pocket, took one look at the confusing shapes and colors, then took one look at the long line behind me, turned to cashier and said: “Here. You do it.” She smiled back; picked out the coins she needed and completed the transaction.

That’s reciprocity. If you want people to trust you, trust them first. Even if you have no logical reason to do so. You always gain a greater interaction. The world is a mirror. What you put out, comes back. It’s not a cliché—it’s human nature. People have mindless, automatic reciprocity reflexes. And they perform certain actions when the world presents them with certain patterns of input. That’s why strangers will spontaneously introduce themselves to me: Not necessarily because they want to meet me, but because of my nametag—I’m willing to meet them.

REMEMBER: Interaction is the agent of human decision. Help people have a better experience with you, and of themselves in relation to you, and you’ll win customers for life.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
How could you engage your people in a way they've never seen before?

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* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Publisher, Artist, Mentor
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

“I usually refuse to pay for mentoring. But after Scott’s first brain rental session, the fact that I had paid something to be working with him left my mind – as far as I was concerned, the value of that (and subsequent) exchange of wisdom and knowledge, far outweighed any payment."

--Gilly Johnson The Australian Mentoring Center

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

The Nametag Guy Live: How to Inspire People to Motivate Themselves



LET ME ASK YA THIS…
How do you inspire people to motivate themselves?

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* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Publisher, Artist, Mentor
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Never the same speech twice.

Now booking for 2012!

Watch The Nametag Guy in action here!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Do You Taste Like Fish?

I was in Tokyo when it happened.

When I sat down at the sushi bar, the chef noticed my nametag, bowed and greeted me with what I assume is the Japanese version of my name:

“Scotto!”

He laughed, so I showed him the second nametag under my jacket.

“Scotto! Hai!”

He motioned over to his boss, yelled something in Japanese and brought him over to meet me. I pulled down my shirt and showed them layer number three, my tattoo.

“Scotto! Arigato!”

They both laughed and bowed. I bowed back.

And then they started feeding me. For two hours. I have no idea what I was eating, but it was the freshest, most delicious sushi I ever had.
Eventually, the rice expanded in my stomach to the point of immobility. And as I sat back to celebrate the moment, he proud chef looked me in the eye and imparted a priceless life lesson:

“Sushi that taste like fish – no good sushi.”

Never let them catch you acting.

Learn how to disappear, and you can change people forever.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
Do you taste like fish?

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* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Publisher, Artist, Mentor
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Never the same speech twice.

Now booking for 2012!

Watch The Nametag Guy in action here!

Monday, November 14, 2011

How to Break the Box Around Yourself and Let People Like You

College was hard.

Not the school part – the social part.

Making friends. Going to parties. Hanging out at bars. Trying to score dates.

All of it was a struggle.

Not because I was shy – because I was sober.

I don’t drink. I don’t smoke. I don’t do drugs. I don’t do anything.

It’s nothing religious. Nothing philosophical. Just a choice: I don’t like the taste. I don’t like being out of control of my body. I don’t need chemicals to have fun. And I hate being hung over.

But it was still college. And the story we’ve been programmed to believe is that the purpose of college is to get as intoxicated as possible as often as possible.
And anyone who deviates from that herd gets left behind.

So I was the outcast. I was the weird one. I was the guy who wasn’t drunk, wasn’t stoned and, as far as people knew, wasn’t having fun and wasn’t worth talking to. Just a straight edge silently judging the rest of the room. Who wants hang out with that guy?

But after two years of college, I finally said to myself: “This has to stop.”

I was tired of not having friends. I was tired of being excluded. And I was tired of spending my weekends eating roast beef sandwiches watching Dawson’s Creek alone in my dorm room.

Don't judge me. That show was awesome.

So I started wearing the nametag. All the time. And everything changed.

Now, I had an in.
Now, I had an opening.
Now, I had an opportunity to engage.

But it was more than just trying to get attention – I was trying to give myself away.

I chose to live a better story.

And you’d be amazed how well that worked.

With the nametag, everybody saw me.
With the nametag, everybody knew me.
With the nametag, everybody talked to me.

It was a socialization.

A signal. A permission slip. An invitation for friendliness. And the nametag was also disarming gesture. A non-threatening symbol. And a cue that reduced the social distance between me and the world.

From the moment I stuck it on my shirt, I became more approachable. People treated me differently. College started to suck less. And I had some of the best times and made some of the best friends of my life.

But here’s the really interesting part.

With the nametag, nobody seemed to care that was always sober.

They were too busy saying hi.

They were getting to know me as a person – not as a preference.

And all I had to do was give myself away.

I broke the box I put around myself and let people like me.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
What's your socialization?

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* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Publisher, Artist, Mentor
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Never the same speech twice.

Now booking for 2011-2012!

Watch The Nametag Guy in action here!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Letting the Nerd Come Out to Play

I once found a Halloween costume called “The Nerd Kit.”

The contents included a pocket protector, fake teeth with braces, acne paint, a black bow tie, a pair of thick-rimmed glasses with adhesive tape over the bridge, and of course, a red and white nametag that read “Harold.”

Perfect.

Then again, I’ve always been a nerd.

The nametag just gave me permission to let him come out and play.

When I was in elementary school, every week a handful of us were pulled out of class to spend part of our time in Gifted and Talented Education.
We did critical thinking drills and creative exercises. We learned how to ask questions and where to listen for answers. And we were given an irrevocable license to create in an atmosphere that was free of judgment, ridicule and snobby girls named Emily.

Basically, it’s where we got to practice being nerds.

And the cool part was, nobody really told us why we were pulled out class. Our parents and teachers just said we were part of this unique group. And when the gifted teacher visited our classroom, it was time to pack up and go get creative.

Which clearly meant that we were better than all the other kids in class.

Suckers.

Looking back, that program was the absolute highlight of my childhood.

It’s where we were totally free.
It’s where we felt safe being ourselves.
It’s where we nurtured our eccentricities.
It’s where we no longer had to hide our truth.

Everything was fair game, everybody was weird and nothing was off limits. By practicing being nerds, we had an emotional and spiritual release that helped us become the best, highest versions of ourselves.

Interestingly, I don’t remember anything I learned in third grade.

But I’ll never forget gifted time. I can’t. It’s too much a part of my creative soul.

And so I always wondered to myself: Why wouldn’t they make all of school like that?

Kind of like the airplane: If the only thing that survives the crash is the black box, wouldn’t they just make the whole plane out of the black box?

I don’t understand.

We shouldn’t need a separate classroom to let the nerd come out and play.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
How nerdy are you willing to be?

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* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Publisher, Artist, Mentor
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Never the same speech twice.

Now booking for 2011-2012!

Watch The Nametag Guy in action here!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

4 Keys To Success That Small Business Owners Often Forget—Even The Pros

Small businesspeople are smart.

They’re masters of marketing, sales, leadership, operations and customer service.

But occasionally they forget basic elements that make them successful. And to ignore them is to ignore the potential of new business.

Straight from my monthly column at American Express Open Forum, make sure you don’t forget these four keys:

1. Simplicity is eloquence. It happens all the time. Nametag companies send me their fancy, cluttered badges to wear instead of my own. No thanks. Not that I don’t appreciate the gesture. In fact, I save all the nametags people send me. But my brand is a friend of simplicity. Is yours?
Or, do you try to be too fancy, make things bigger than they need to be and create riddles that take too long for impatient customers to solve? Simple means instantly repeatable. Simple means easy enough for a kindergartner to understand. Simple means explainable in less than ten seconds with less than ten words. Simple means eliminating the extraneous, letting the necessary speak and disengaging the inessential.

Unfortunately, simple is hard. It requires more energy, more brainpower and more courage that complexity. But simplicity, pursued relentlessly, can change the world. Is your brand a friend of it?

2. Friendly costs nothing. My business card is a nametag. But it doesn’t say Scott – it says Scott’s Friend. I don’t give people a choice. Everybody my friend, whether they like it or not. Amigo del Mundo. That’s how I was raised. I want to be friends with everyone, all the time, everywhere. And I want to love everybody I meet forever and then some.

Over the years, these friend cards have created a lot of special moments. I’ll never forget the incident on the tarmac. I was waiting to board my plane when I felt someone’s eyes upon me. Glancing up at the door, I noticed the groundsman holding up his laminated security badge with one of my business cards facing outward. “Hey look everybody – I’m Scott’s Friend!” he laughed. “Wait a minute. Where did you get that? Have we met before?” “No, but you flew through here last week. And I think the zipper on your bag must have broke, because we found three hundred of your cards scattered across the runway!”

Great. Not only am I a litterbug, but now my contact information is all over the trash. “Oh, don’t worry about it Scott. Matter of fact, I made my entire staff on the runway wear your cards in their security badge holders.” “Really? Why?” “Well, our airport just got a new general manager. His name is Scott, and he doesn’t have any friends.” It’s not who you love – it’s whose life is better because you love them. How many friends did you make last week?

3. The problem with the Internet. When I went to my ten-year high school reunion, I had this romantic, cinematic vision that I’d walk in the door, tell everybody the story about how I made a career out of wearing nametag and watch as they listened in disbelief. One of those how-do-you-like-me-now moments. But it doesn’t work that way. Not anymore.

Instead of asking what I’ve been up to since graduation, former classmates I hadn’t seen in a decade came up to me – didn’t even say hello – poked my chest and asked to see my nametag tattoo. I’m fine, how are you? That’s the downside of the Internet: We never have to wonder about anything anymore. No finding things out on accident. No learning things through trial and error. No imagining things by sitting around and pondering. The Internet just gives you a blank box and puts the entire world behind it. And personally, I think that’s too easy.

The secret is, we can never bury our sense of wonder. It’s what makes us human, helps us feel alive and enables us to connect with each other. Einstein said imagination is more important than knowledge. I say imagination is more important than anything. What does your brand say?

4. Decide what your legend is. Whether I’m attending a conference with colleagues, practicing yoga with friends, interacting online with readers or having dinner with family, people constantly tell me stories about telling my story. A few years ago I was on the bike at the gym. The guy next to me noticed my nametag. And after a few moments of awkward silence, he launched right into the rumor:

“You know, I once heard a story about some guy who wore a nametag everyday in college. I think it was a sociological experiment or something. But they made a documentary about him. And think he set a world record. Pretty crazy, huh?”

I didn’t have the heart to tell him. The rumors were far too interesting to listen to. And I didn’t want to ruin the image he had about the story. So I just kept asking questions. “Did you ever meet him?” “What ever happened to that guy?” “Do you think he went crazy or something? I wonder if he knew I knew.

The point is, your brand tells a story whether you like it or not. And while facts are misleading, rumors are always revealing – even if they’re wrong. If you want to make your legend worth crossing the street for, if you want people to feel proud and eager to spread your myth, you have to manage your story like an asset. Because people don’t just buy what you sell – they buy what you tell. Are you spreading positive rumors about yourself?

REMEMBER: Never underestimate the power of continual application of the fundamentals.

Forget the rudiments and forego the revenue.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
What are you overlooking?

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For the list called, "8 Ways to Out Give Your Competition," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Publisher, Artist, Mentor
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Never the same speech twice.

Now booking for 2012!

Watch The Nametag Guy in action here!

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

What My Nametag Taught Me About Diversity

Every culture responds to my nametag in its own unique way.

Latin Americans are engaging.
When I walk in their stores, they smile and say, “Buenos dias, Escott!”

Indians are proper.
When I shake their hands, they always call me, “Mr. Scott.”

Australians are affirmative and humorous.
When I tell them I wear a nametag everyday, they nod and say, “Good on ya mate! I reckon that’s helpful when you’ve had a few pints.”

Canadians are non-confrontational and inclusive.
When I meet them they say, “Nice name tag. Eh?”

Asians are enthusiastic.
When I walk into a sushi bar, the chefs bow and say, “Scotto!”

Jamaicans are hospitable.
When I walk through the airport, they yell, “Scott my brother! Ya mon! Anything you need, no problem.”
Brits are dry and sarcastic.
When they see my nametag, they ask, “I take it your name is Scott?”

French people are snobby.
When I walk into their store, they look at me like I’m crazy and said, “Scott.”

Russians are playful.
When I meet them at conferences, they joke, “You have memory problem?”

Hasidics are inquisitive.
When I interact with them, they ask me a million questions, “Why do you wear the nametag on left side? What about color? Where do you buy them? You get good deal?”

Middle Easterners are accommodating.
When I shop with them, they say, “Scott my friend, come inside. I like you. You have nice face. I give you good price.”

What’s amazing to me is, in eleven years, the people who responded most negatively to my nametag were Americans. All the hatemail, insults, negative feedback and death threats came from my own people.

So much for winning the war at home.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
How do people from different cultures respond to you?

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For the list called, "43 Reasons to Deliver Your Content with Lists," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Publisher, Artist, Mentor
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Never the same speech twice.

Now booking for 2011-2012!

Watch The Nametag Guy in action here!

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

NametagTV: Responses That Matter



Not everyone is looking for an answer.

When people turn to you, sometimes all they want is a response.

Here’s the difference:

When you give answers, you fix.
When you give answers, you offer advice.
When you give answers, you try to be right.
When you give answers, you add unnecessary value.
When you give answers, you dominate the discussion.
When you give answers, you impose your own direction.
When you give answers, you rob people of the learning experience.

IN SHORT: You speak from a place of information.

But.

When you offer responses, you dance in the moment.
When you offer responses, you acknowledge their truth.
When you offer responses, you leave people feeling heard.
When you offer responses, you practice emotional restraint.
When you offer responses, you let people learn things on their own.
When you offer responses, you reflect people’s immediate experience.
When you offer responses, you get out of the way and give people space to process.

IN SHORT: You speak from a place of affirmation.

Here are a few ways to respond – not answer – someone who turns to you:
1. Respond with reflection. I once dated a woman who was undergoing a career transition. One afternoon while complaining about her idiot boss, I defaulted to coach mode and starting dispensing answers. Huge mistake. She interrupted and exclaimed, “I don’t need you to help me – I need you to bitch with me.”

So I did. We had a bitchfest. And admittedly, it was kind of fun. Almost like a game of improv. Point being, even if complaining isn’t your preferred method for dealing with problems, if it’s the response people need most, you have to honor that request. Otherwise your desire to fix, be right and look smart becomes a barrier to being helpful. Are you a human mirror?

2. Respond with nothing. Don’t turn from silence – it’s the gateway through which life’s most profound insights enter. Next time someone comes to you, be careful not to talk just for the sake of talking. Sometimes the best thing you can say is nothing at all. Sometimes the best response is to hold someone’s hand, look at her with compassionate eyes and remind her that she’s not alone.

In that moment, silence serves as a permission slip. It creates the space people need to slow down, process their thoughts and examine the nuances of the story they’re telling. Are you willing to accept silence as a normal, healthy part of your conversations?

3. Respond with wow. Not saying the wrong thing at the wrong time is equally as important as saying the right thing at the right time. Especially in highly emotional situations, the last thing you want is to make the other person think, “You’re not helping.”

Instead of dispensing bumper sticker platitudes, rote responses, disrespectful minimizers, empty promises or false empathy, just say, “Wow.” It’s the most versatile word in the English language. It acknowledges people’s emotions. And it buys you time to think of what to say next. Are you short-circuiting people’s emotional realities?

4. Respond with questions. Some questions aren’t questions – they’re matches. And often times, that’s what people really need: Someone to infect them with just enough fuel to uncover their own answers. Someone to pump up the volume of the voice they most want to be quiet. And someone to help them connect the dots, see beyond what is, and feel a greater sense of self-achievement.

Just be sure not to ask too many questions. Otherwise you’ll override people’s mental motherboards and smoke will start coming out of their heads. Next time someone turns to you, don’t overlook the value of asking one disturbing question – and shutting up. Are you a question mark?

5. Respond with paper. Taking notes respects people’s thoughts. It shows them their words have weight. And it honors the profound human longing to be seen and feel heard. What’s more, it’s the most expressive, honest and organized way to respond to someone without dispensing advice. Especially if you physically hand someone your notes after a few minutes of listening.

Let them see their own words reflected back to them. It’s an affirmation, confirmation and validation of their personal truth. Because paper doesn’t lie. Plus, now you have a record of the conversation just in case a person does. What did you write today?

REMEMBER: Just because you’re a good listener doesn’t you leave people heard.

Next time someone turns to you, try offering a response.

Because not everyone wants an answer.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
Can you practice enough emotional restraint to respond instead of answer?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS...
For a list called, "7 Ways to Out Experience the Competition," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Entrepreneur, Mentor
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Sick of selling?
Tired of cold calling?
Bored with traditional prospecting approaches?


Buy Scott's book and learn how to sell enable people to buy!

Pick up your copy (or a case!) right here.

Monday, November 07, 2011

Download a Copy of "The Nametag Principle" For Free, In Its Entirety, No Strings, Right Now!

Thanks to my friends at esbjournal, you can now download my latest daily devotional, "The Nametag Principle", in its entirety, for free, no strings attached, right now.

Yes, you can also buy the book on Amazon.

But I just figured, what the hell. Why not give it away? The more you give away for free, the wealthier you will be.

Markets reward generosity.

Enjoy the devotional.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
Will you take a moment to make a memory?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS...
For the list called, "52 Random Insights to Grow Your Business," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Publisher, Artist, Mentor
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Never the same speech twice.

Now booking for 2011-2012!

Watch The Nametag Guy in action here!

Friday, November 04, 2011

Help Scott Ginsberg Write "The Nametag Manifesto" On ChangeThis.com

After 4000+ days, I am convinced the societal implications of everybody wearing nametags could change our world forever.

I've written my official manifesto, and to publish it, I need your vote.

It takes ten seconds. Please help!

Here's the synopsis:

Everyone should wear nametags. Every day. Everywhere. After eleven years of constant experimentation, research and exploration, Scott Ginsberg, who has worn a nametag for 4,000 consecutive days, believes that the societal implications of nametags will change everything:

Higher intimacy. Greater social belonging. No more human commoditization. No more social conflict. No more untruthfulness. Lower threat level. Higher social captial. The end of incivility.

The end of cultural barriers. The end of disconnectedness. Mass generosity. Deeper mindfulness. Deeper humility. Less formality. Less hierarchy. Less insecurity. Less discrimination. And of course, no more anonymity.


Vote now!.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
What would happen if we all wore nametags?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS...
For the list called, "14 Things You Don't Have to Do Anymore," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Publisher, Artist, Mentor
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Never the same speech twice.

Now booking for 2011-2012!

Watch The Nametag Guy in action here!

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

The Bridge Between Opportunity and Profitability

Wearing a nametag every day isn’t much of an accomplishment.

Making a successful career out of it, is.

That’s leverage.

Killing two stones with one bird.

And it all pivots on one question:

Now that I have this, what else does this make possible?

That’s not just a question, that’s a catapult.
And if you’re willing to adopt leverage as a way of thinking, as a way of living – and not just another downloadable skill – you’ll be amazed at the change you can create.

Leverage is the bridge between opportunity and profitability.

Cross it daily.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
What did you leverage this week?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS...
For the list called, "23 Ways to Make Your Fans Super Happy," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Publisher, Artist, Mentor
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Never the same speech twice.

Now booking for 2011-2012!

Watch The Nametag Guy in action here!

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

How Do You Practice Being Vulnerable?

Wearing a nametag doesn’t just encourage people to be friendly.

It also invites people to stare at me, make fun of me, point at me, spatially violate me, yell at me, curse at me, share overly personal information with me, attempt to sell drugs to me, start fights with me, kiss me in the middle of a crowded bar, and on a few occasions, stalk me.

No wonder nobody else wants to wear one everyday.

Still, it’s great practice being vulnerable.

Allowing yourself to be seen as you truly are.
Allowing yourself to be affected by the world around you.
And in my experience, the more vulnerable you are, the more open you are. The more open you are, the less you have to hide. The less you have to hide, the more relaxed you become. And the more relaxed you become, the more effectively you can communicate with others.

Yes, you’re risking your truth, risking standing out and risking being rejected.
Yes, vulnerability requires confidence in yourself and implies security in yourself.

But.

But nothing.

Stick yourself out there.

It’s worth it.

LET ME ASK YA THIS…
How vulnerable are you willing to be?

LET ME SUGGEST THIS...
For the list called, "154 More Pieces of Contrarian Wisdom," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Publisher, Artist, Mentor
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

Never the same speech twice.

Now booking for 2011-2012!

Watch The Nametag Guy in action here!