Here’s how to become the top producer of all time at your organization. Always make it about you versus you, never about you versus your team members.
Oh, and building a personal brand for yourself isn’t a bad strategy, either.
“My degree went from criminal justice to finance and economics, a complete 180,” Danny said.
Get ready as we talk about choosing a structured, disciplined lifestyle at work and home, creating a personal brand for yourself, refining your techniques for leading a team while still producing, and of course — keeping focused, keeping positive, and never relaxing.
Let’s dive right in!
Competing with yourself
When Danny became team lead, he took a somewhat different approach than many of us would. He decided to keep being the top producer year in and year out.
In other words, he led by example.
The one thing that helped keep him driven as an individual contributor, coach, and VP is challenge.
“As a team leader, I want to be the best team leader in the company,” he said. To do that, he put metrics to the accounts to be able to measure wins.
“Focus on winning and creating your own challenges, creating your own competition for yourself,” he said.
A leader isn’t someone who looks side to side and thinks, Gotta be better than them. A leader is someone who spends time in self-reflection thinking, How can I improve myself further?
As a component of the metrics, Danny decided to pick two or three accounts per day — out of 500 — to work on. He suggested shrinking down the number into something you can hit day after day.
Obviously, leveraging technology like Salesforce, Outlook calendars, and in-house apps help you save yourself time to focus on the work that really matters.
Don’t focus on the number itself but on how to develop yourself into a better person.
Both at the office and at home, who you are as an individual is how you will achieve a “successful” life — success meaning becoming a good spouse, a good leader, a good parent, and a good person.
Choosing a balanced lifestyle
“Success is a choice, but it’s also a lifestyle,” Danny said.
Here’s a day in the life:
Get up early, focus on the little stuff in the morning, then dive into the calendar schedule. Reach out to team members. Leave the daily voicemails. And then… come home and be present with the family.
Every single day.
Being so structured and self-disciplined means that the work ethic and the attitude are their own reward, not the profit or the recognition.
This leads right into creating your personal brand.
- Within the company: Do your team members respect you? How’s your leadership capital looking?
- Outside the company: Do your clients view you as someone who will help them grow their business?
“My focus point was always to separate yourself from the competition,” Danny said. “Do things different than everybody else.”
That’s the secret of personal brand. That’s what makes it about you versus you, not you versus anyone else.
Personal brand & customer relationships
One specific strategy Danny used to differentiate himself and boost his personal brand is to brag for his clients.
When he learned of his clients’ successes, he’d post on social media. He’d tag like crazy so that everyone involved would be able to follow the success story that happened with an individual in a community.
“When I’m talking to my clients, I want to show them that working with me is going to get them more business in the door,” Danny said. “I’m creating free advertising for every single one of my individual clients.”
This takes a positive mindset, a personal relationship, and a determination to find successes and build a story on social media about them.
It’s this level of cheerleading for others that means a client will say they called Danny the individual, not Danny the company.
A personal brand is a combination of creating success stories for your clients, bragging about them, going the extra mile to get them more business.
Danny’s Top Takeaways
- Maintain a sharp focus. Create goals for yourself and the steps it will take to get you there.
- Keep a positive mindset. Avoid becoming your own biggest weakness by focusing on the things you can control and looking for wins.
- Never relax mentally. Maximize your time and take advantage of every opportunity to get better at your craft.
Get in touch with Danny on LinkedIn. (P.S. He’s hiring!)