You have permission …

… to take the simple path instead of the complicated path. … to take time off to rebalance and think big thoughts. … to find success while others struggle. … to put your own name and identity out there before your company. … to take a break after reaching goals. … to work smarter instead Read More…

The Bourdain Tragedy

Foodies, chefs, and lovers of all things food and wine got the terrible news on the morning of June 8th 2018: Anthony Bourdain was no longer with us. That it was suicide was particularly tough to hear and made it all the more frustrating and heartbreaking. Bourdain was one of those great characters on the Read More…

Screwing up (gracefully)

You dropped the ball. Screwed up royally. There are no excuses. Somebody is going to be mad. The owner’s manual on screwing up gracefully reads pretty simply: Own it. Don’t make excuses. Don’t try to hide. Apologize. Hope for the best. Then apologize again. Too bad more people don’t have a copy of the owner’s Read More…

What work should you do today?

The answer is pretty simple, really. Do more of the work that proves to work well for you. Do less of the work that proves to not work well for you. More of what works, less of what doesn’t. Take the time to think about that as you make decisions on how to spend your Read More…

Bird Brains: Proof that there are always haters

If you try to appease everybody all the time you eventually spend an inordinate amount of time appeasing the lowest of the low. In the wine business, there are legendary thugs and bullies that own liquor stores around the country or buy wine for such shops. They harass, they intimidate, they threaten, they position themselves for Read More…

Simplifying networking

“Connection points” and “synergy” are terms often bantered about when it comes to networking. Heck, there are easily 12 other overused buzzwords I could list here. There are whole books, blogs, video series, and courses based on the Art of Networking. At its core networking sounds so easy: The idea that you can help them and they Read More…

The chemistry of learning something new

Let’s put brain chemistry to work for us in the wine sales industry. No, I’m not talking about even more sampling and drinking. I’m talking about learning. Turns out the release of dopamine in the brain — the trigger that happens when you have the first sip of a really great wine, or hear coins Read More…

A simple formula

Here’s the simple formula for success: Exceed expectations. Again and again and again and again and again. There. Done. Simple as that. (Moral of the story: you don’t have to complicate things to achieve success in business.)

A simple gift

A simple, honest, no-strings-attached, inexpensive, and targeted gift might be one of the most valuable items in the world. A DVD of the last Rush tour for your customer that loves the band. A block of top grade watercolor paper for the restaurant manager who mentioned what she does on off days to relax. A pair Read More…

Company culture and long term employees

The idea of culture building gets bantered about far too much in many corporations, and ironically the ones that talk about it the most are often the ones that have a cultural problem on their hands. Culture is built through actions, not mission statements (see the 9 worst of all time), and thus by definition it starts with Read More…

Gifts

It’s that time of the year. Gifts are awesome. I don’t know anybody who actively resists receiving a gift. I also know people who constantly give gifts. Some of these gift givers are pure to the extreme (“I saw this and thought immediately of you”), some are as predictable as the sun coming up (Merry Read More…