A famous African proverb states, “if you want to go fast go alone, if you want to go far, go together.” This proverb captures how important relationships are to getting things done. Relationships are at the core of all the activities that bring value to our work and our lives. Many times, relationships overlap in both areas. A colleague becomes a friend or a friend becomes a professional mentor. When we observe relationships integrating seamlessly between our work and our personal lives we have the opportunity to more effectively leverage the unlimited value that relationships offer in multiple areas of our lives.

As humans, we love to put everything into categories, yet relationships provide more value when they can remain fluid, flowing in and out of different areas of our lives. For example, today, I had breakfast with a guy who used to be my competitor. He’s now a friend, neighbor, and a client. He’s also given me valuable coaching on various aspects of my personal life. We are both one another’s customers. If I thought of my work and personal life as separate categories, I would have trouble figuring out which bucket to put him in. Would he be considered a customer or client? Or maybe I should view him as a friend and neighbor? Attempting to categorize our relationship into one of these buckets would actually limit the rich experience and expertise we bring to one another’s lives. Our relationship overlaps seamlessly in both professional and personal ways, which brings tremendous value to us in both areas.

Likewise, non-work settings can also be a source for cultivating valuable professional relationships. I attend bible study with a guy who happens to be the president of one of the largest private land holding companies in the country. As someone who curious about the trend of converting biomass into fuel, I immediately thought about my bible-study friend. Thanks to his expertise and experience in the land business, I bet he could offer insight into how to approach investing in this new technology. Again, if I siloed my friend into merely a Church friend, I would have missed out on the opportunity for us both to connect and benefit in a professional capacity. Chances are, you too belong to communities, groups, or participate in activities that offer many symbiotic friendships in both work and life.

The lesson here is that each person we meet in any setting, whether it be work or personal, provides us with the opportunity to add and take value regardless of whether we have clocked in or not.


From day one of finding out that she had stage four colon cancer, Shonda McCarty Kearns was a cancer survivor…not a cancer victim.  Her survival skills were her optimistic and faithful perspective paired with her contagious spunk and spirit.  When asked how she was feeling, Shonda would respond by saying “I’m at 100%, except for this cancer.”  Shonda never fixated on the cancer itself, but looked to her family, friends, and faith.  Even in the midst of battling brutal treatments, she continued to put others before herself, always wanting to know what was needed and how she could help.  Because that’s who she was before she was diagnosed.  And that’s who she remained true to be.

While at lunch with her father yesterday, he said the following about Shonda: “She never wanted the spotlight, but always wanted to be the center of attention.”  Today, she will get to have both.  At 3pm, there will be a memorial service at Mill Creek Foursquare Church in Lynnwood.  All who knew Shonda, or knew of her, are welcome to attend.

We have the opportunity to partner with Shonda’s dreams for her children, Andrew and Rachel.  In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to a fund for them by clicking here.  And to read more about this lovely lady, click here.

Click to refocus. Click and drag for Perspective Shift.

Lytro has just opened a new office in Redmond at thinkspace. We are excited to be expanding our physical presence, and are thrilled to be part of the thinkspace community. The Lytro camera lets you capture and share what you see in a whole new way. The key innovation is light field technology, which captures all of the light rays in a scene to create interactive, living pictures. Instead of capturing a flat 2D image, the light field includes all the rays of light traveling in every direction through a scene. And that changes everything.  By capturing the light field, you can do incredible things. Like refocus pictures after you take them. On the camera you can tap the touchscreen on whatever part of the picture you want to bring into focus. Once a picture is imported into your computer, click to refocus.  It also allows you to change the perspective of the captured image.

Click to refocus.  Click and drag for Perspective Shift.

The company was founded in 2006 by CEO Dr. Ren Ng, whose research in light field photography won best PhD dissertation in computer science at Stanford in 2006 as well as the internationally recognized ACM award. Lytro has raised approximately $50 million to date from Andreessen Horowitz, Greylock Partners, NEA, and K9 Ventures along with individual investors.

Visit www.lytro.com for more details.

beresfordsThis week, I finished my “Christina-Dudley-triathlon-series” (read more about that series here and here) by reading her latest book, The Beresfords.  The book is a modern day adaptation of Jane Austen’s Mansfield Park and was actually chosen as “The Best Modern Adaptation” in 2012 by Austenprose.  Similar to the Fanny Price of Mansfield Park, the book tells the tale of Frannie Price and her coming of age while living with her extended family.  There is drama, romance, heartache, and reconciliation.  What’s not to love?  Dudley may be on to something with her modern day adaptations, and I hope she chooses Emma next.

What else have I read during my yearlong reading project?
–> Week 1  –> Week 2  –> Week 3  –> Week 4
–> Week 5  –> Week 6  –> Week 7  –> Week 8
–> Week 9  –> Week 10  –> Week 11  –> Week 12
–> Week 13  –> Week 14


What if the Declaration of Independence was written by modern sales and marketing professionals, attempting to free themselves from archaic processes, irrelevant strategies and old-school management structures?

Using as much of the same language as possible, this is what it might look like. Have a great Fourth of July Weekend everyone!

IN UNISON, July 4, 2013.

The unanimous Declaration of Modern Sales & Marketing Professionals the World Over,

When in the Course of the latest fiscal year or quarter, it becomes necessary for sales & marketing departments to dissolve the political & organizational constraints which have both connected and kept them from one another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the new, integrated and collaborative station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation from past practices and embrace of the new reality.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all leads are not created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator (be it marketing or sales) with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Conversion.–That to secure these rights, Sales and Marketing Departments are instituted among Companies, deriving their just powers from the consent of the executive suite, –That whenever any Form of Management becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the Sales & Marketing Departments to alter or to abolish irrelevant habits and processes, and to institute new collaborative best practices, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Success and Sales Results.

Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Organizations long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown, that too many sales & marketing organizations are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms (and barriers and politics) to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Missed Numbers, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such traditional organizational barriers, and to provide new Rules for their future success.

Such has been the patient sufferance of these Sales & Marketing professionals; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Operations. The history of the historic, ineffective Sales & Marketing system is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these teams and objectives. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

-It has refused Assent to Buyers, the most wholesome and necessary for the public pipeline.

-It has forbidden marketing managers to enact new processes of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till an organizational consensus should be obtained; and when so suspended, the organization has utterly neglected to attend to them.

-It has refused to enact other new processes for the accommodation of large districts of the sales team, unless those sales reps would relinquish the right of access to leads in the CRM, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.

-It has called together random administrative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Leads, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with archaic measures and lead follow-up systems.

-It has dissolved Management teams repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness attempts to improve lead flow and pipeline growth on the rights of the sales team.

-It has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be enabled with CRM and marketing automation access; whereby the Management powers, incapable of Reaching Consensus, have returned to the marketing team at large for their exercise; the Sales Team remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.

-It has endeavored to prevent the population of these Lead Funnels; for that purpose obstructing the Processes for Naturalization of New Leads; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Redistribution of Qualified Opportunities.

-It has obstructed the Administration of Conversion, by refusing Assent to Lead Nurturing for establishing Conversion powers.

-It has made Lead Quality Definitions dependent on Subjective Will alone, for the tenure of their conversion to SQLs, and the amount and payment of their commissions.

-It has erected a multitude of New Lead Stages, and sent hither swarms of Irrelevant Offers to harass our leads, and eat out their substance.

-It has kept among us, in times of peace, Crappy Content without the Consent of our prospects.

-It has affected to render the lead definitions independent of and superior to the teams that manage them.

-It has combined with others to subject us to a buyer persona foreign to our understanding of customer needs, and unacknowledged by our lead stages; giving Assent to their Acts of pretended Conversion:

-For Quartering large bodies of unqualified leads among us:

-For protecting them, by a mock Drip Campaign, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these Sales Departments:

-For cutting off our Campaigns with all parts of the world:

-For imposing Sales Quotas on us without our Consent:

-For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Reporting by Excel:

-For transporting us beyond CRM to be tried for pretended pipelines

-For abolishing the free System of Sales Process in a neighboring Territory, establishing therein an Arbitrary lead definition, and enlarging its Qualifications so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Sales Teams:

-For taking away our Unconverted Leads, abolishing our most valuable Collateral, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Landing Pages:

-For suspending our own Nurture Campaigns, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all sales opportunities whatsoever.

-It has abdicated Pipeline Management here, by declaring us out of its Protection and waging War against us.

It has plundered our territories, ravaged our Databases, burnt our trade show booths, and destroyed the lives of our sales reps.

-It is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Call Centers to complete the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the VP of a civilized organization.

-It has constrained our fellow Marketers taken Captive on the high Pipeline to bear Arms against their Own Departments, to become the executioners of their peers and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.

-It has excited interdepartmental insurrections amongst us, and has endeavored to bring on the inhabitants of our sales stages, the merciless Unqualified Savages, whose known rule of qualification, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A VP whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the manager of a free process.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Old School brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their management meetings to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our advancement and sales processes here. We have appealed to their native justice and revenue objectives, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these disconnects, which, would inevitably interrupt our pipeline growth and quotas. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of collaboration. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Sales Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united modern Sales & Marketing Organization, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme CEO of the organization for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Sales Teams, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Sales & Marketing teams are, and of Right ought to be Integrated and Collaborative States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the Isolated States of Old, and that all political connection between them and the Old Way of Doing Business, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Integrated and Collaborative States, they have full Power to levy Process, conclude Pipelines, contract New Customers, establish Quotas, and to do all other Acts and Things which Modern States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Sales Goals, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Revenue Objectives.


This article was written by Matt Heinz of Heinz Marketing, and reposted from the Heinz Marketing blog with his permission.