Perspective yields Focus

Facilitating a matermind
Facilitating a matermind

I always take it down a notch between Christmas and New Years, generally taking that week to reflect.  I begin by dusting off my personal mission statement of 20 plus years, by refining and tweaking annually.  This has served me well to keep sight of what is really important.  It helps to link my values to my goals and by extension, helps me navigate day to day. I reflect on my previous year’s business accomplishments, reviewing my successes, my challenges and review my past year’s business in great detail.  I ask myself tough questions such as;

From where did my business come?  Where did I choose to spend my time?  What relationships were the most valuable?  How did I do against my previous years goals?  What personal development must I focus on in the coming year to improve my performance? What must I start doing and importantly, what must I STOP doing.  It allows me to step back from the day to day and reconnect. The funny thing about habits is that they generally sneak up on you, and you adopt behaviors unknowingly.

Once I know my compass is again pointing in the right direction, I begin to chart my course for the next  twelve months of this journey. I turn to a very robust personal planning tool which I have developed and refined over the past 30 years. It takes me several days of reflection and strategic, “outside the box thinking” to come up with a very clear vision and plan on what I must accomplish, quarter over quarter throughout the coming year.  This rigorous perspective yields a focus and commitment to the coming year.  This focus is the catalyst in providing the energy and motivation to face the inevitable adversity which the coming year will bring. All of a sudden, obstacles convert to opportunities, problems become challenges, and setbacks are a source of inspiration.

Best wishes for a prosperous and happy 2016


The secret sauce of successful sales people:

Why is it that some people excel in sales where others do not? Have you ever hired a “sure ringer” only to find 6 months, and $20,000 later that you misread that person’s ability to succeed? I have spent my career in the sales profession, much of it searching for that “silver bullet”, that trait which will predetermine sales success. The answer is not readily apparent, as there is no single overriding attribute that can predict success in sales. Effective Salesmanship is a complex connection between your knowledge, your attitude, your skills and habits (K.A.S.H.). The reason most sales people fail is not a skill issue, nor is it knowledge deficit. The primary underlying issue that causes sales people to fail is their inability to confront the limits of their own comfort zone, and manage their own K.A.S.H. account. learn the secret sauce



TTI wins prestigious Award

Release Date
Fri, April 03, 2015 08:00AM

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – TTI Success Insights (TTI SI) was awarded first place in the small business category during the Leadership 500 Excellence Awards Program, which salutes the world’s top companies for outstanding achievement in leadership development practices.

TTI SI’s top honor celebrated how the company has positively impacted businesses and employees’ lives through its suite of assessment, along with enabling its worldwide network of 7,000 Value Added Associates to meet and exceed their clients’ expectations.Lead500 Award Pic

“Our company has developed and shaped rising leaders for over 30 years, and we feel honored to be a spoke on the wheel in helping small businesses grow and better serve their clients,” said Bill J. Bonnstetter, chairman and founder of TTI SI. “As the workplace shifts with new generations entering the job market, leaders will thrive when they better understand how the fives sciences that make up the Science of Self™ impact their productivity and profits.”

Leadership 500 Excellence Award winners were announced March 31 at LEAD500, a three-day conference in Dallas keynoted by former President Bill Clinton. This year’s awards recipients were judged by an expert panel and selected based on both an application and nomination process, as well as feedback from each nominated company’s stakeholders.

The top 500 leadership organizations receive recognition in’s annual ranking and the winners in each category are featured in this month’s Leadership Excellence magazine. A full list of winners is also available.

“I think the Leadership 500 Awards, in combination with LEAD 2015, demonstrates top organizations that not only value leadership, but also have innovative programs,” said Debbie McGrath, CEO of “This year’s list of winners reflect the importance of reinventing leadership development and the need to bring leadership to a wider audience.”

Established in 1984 by Bill J. Bonnstetter and his son, Dave Bonnstetter, TTI SI has helped businesses increase employee engagement, increase leaders’ self-awareness, improve team efficiencies, and provide clarity in purpose and communication.

About TTI Success Insights
TTI Success Insights believes all people are unique and have talents and skills of which they are often unaware. We exist to reveal and harness these talents, using the Science of Self™. For over 30 years, we have researched and applied social and brain science, creating assessment solutions consultants in 90 countries and 40 languages used to hire, develop and retain the best talent in the world. With a tenacious, innovative culture, we transform potential to productivity, performance and profits. Every 7 seconds, someone is taking a TTI SI assessment to increase their self-awareness and grow their career. For more information, visit and @TTI_SI.

Contact Information
Emily Soccorsy


If it walks like a duck, talks like a duck, is it really a duck?

Emotional intelligence in the workplace:

There are three significant trends pertaining to the United States workforce which merit consideration:

  • There is a growing shortage of qualified workers.
  • The workforce is increasingly mobile and less loyal.
  • Human Capital is fast becoming the most valuable asset for top performing companies.

A significant concern for organizations is identifying, finding, attracting and retaining the very best talent.  Thriving in today’s business environment goes way beyond skills talent and intelligence. Companies can offer salaries, benefits, and perks, but if their employees don’t feel valued or recognized for their efforts, the financial investments may be undermined by those who will continue to seek opportunities to be valued above and beyond the compensation system.

Building and sustaining an emotionally intelligent workforce will be THE decisive differentiator for successful organizations in the new millennium. Emotional intelligence is one’s ability to understand and integrate their environment and adapt to adversity.  Studies have shown that people with high EI have greater mental health, exemplary job performance, and more potent leadership skills.

We are constantly faced with adversity in our workday, thus our ability to adapt, learn, share and motivate is a constant we bring to each and every work opportunity.   Emotional intelligence is a gauge of one’s ability to deal with change and adversity. By understanding a candidate’s emotional quotient, we can predict with a great deal of accuracy how they will respond to the particular rigors of a job.   There are Five components we measure in Emotional intelligence:

Self-awareness, Self-regulation, Motivation, Empathy, and Social skill

Make sure you understand someone’s emotional quotient the next time you promote someone into a substantial role, or select a senior executive to facilitate change or growth.

The greater responsibility an employee has, the more expensive personnel mistakes become.  Do your homework and take nothing to chance, assess emotional intelligence before you make major personnel decisions.  The company follows the direction a leader chooses…

Contact us to learn more about assessing emotional intelligence




focus determines the level of engagment of your people

Great leaders understand this and are able to rise above the daily distractions and focus on 5 focus areas; Coaching their people, Hiring Right, Assessing Talent,Managing their people to focus on high gain activities, and Planning well. . 80% or more of their time is spent on these 5 critical disciplines (C.H.A.M.P.):

Less effective leaders however, find themselves getting involved in the minutia. They spend less than 15% on these 5 core areas. They may work hard but accomplish seemingly little. They go home at night and realize they never got to their #1 item for the day. They are constantly pulled into the tactical, limiting their true effectiveness. Why? They view “coaching” as an adjunct part of their job, not recognizing that coaching IS the job. They are ill-prepared for interviewing job applicants and, unlike an RFQ, have not determined the criteria they demand, so they settle without realizing it. They select a candidate, and go through the perfunctory onboarding, with little review, feedback or mentoring. They then start all over again when the person fails, or worse yet, they keep hoping, wishing and yes even praying that the person will “turn it around” soon, even though it was clear by the third week that the candidate would fail. The executive rose through the ranks or built their company by “getting ‘er done…” The company outgrows you but you work longer and harder with the ill-fated notion that you can singlehandedly manage the same company that is 5X the original size. Finally most entrepreneurs are built for action. Their strong motivation to achieve sometimes leads to action, often times absent sufficient pre-thought. The result; false starts, changing direction, micromanagement and confusion and frustration. Unless you are giving your people a way to fuse their minds and develop the potential they hold, they are not truly empowered. The Corporate Mind establishes alignment and organizational effectiveness:

  • Single mindedness of purpose.
  • An ability to filter out distraction.
  • A motivated and mobilized team that acts in support of the vision at all times.

Become the leader that you’d want to follow. If you aren’t practicing and exercising the CorporateMind then neither will they! Give your team a realistic and effective way to participate and drive your collective success. Place everyone on the same page. That’s how you’ll improve sales, increase customer satisfaction and gain market share. All you need to do is “share your minds”. That’s what it means to operate as a CorporateMind. Ask yourself, “Are you leading or Managing?”



Are you coaching or mentoring?

It is easy to become confused about the differences between coaching and mentoring.

Often times the two terms are used interchangeably when in fact there are some very distinct differences. The primary distinction being “who established the course of action”.  In mentoring, the course of action is usually provided by the mentor, whereas in a true coaching engagement, it is the coachee who creates the action plan. Most managers, in the interests of being expedient, choose to mentor, as opposed to coaching.  Why? It is quicker and more “efficient.”  As a result the lasting quality of the lesson is marginalized. The reason is simple. If a person sets a personal goal, and successfully accomplishes it after painstakingly working toward its achievement, personal and professional growth is always a powerful byproduct. The result is that similar situations will seem familiar, the coachee’s confidence will rise and they can approach that new problem with greater confidence. In a mentoring engagement, however, the mentee does not go through the pain of evaluating options, choosing a course of action or experiencing the personal satisfaction of conquering the challenge. Thus, they are deprived of a key growth component.


The coach’s responsibility is to offer perspective through powerful questions then motivate and hold the coachee accountable to attaining their objectives.   Both Coaching and mentoring have their place in the work place. Coaching is the highest order of learning in any professional environment.  As managers we trip over scores of coaching opportunities daily.  Ask yourself; do you address those opportunities as a coach, mentor or manager?


Talent assessment lessons from the NFL combine

Each year in February, in preparation for the draft, NFL staff descends like locusts on Lucas stadium for the annual NFL Combine. It is here that the most talented college players in the land come to display their talent, improve their draft positions and position themselves for that big contract.  For major NFL Franchises, the vetting process is by no means a science but combine attendees are put through a battery of skills tests, interviews and assessments (Wonderlic Cognitive Ability Test ) as staff attempt to gauge the relative worth of the assembled athletes. These processes are similar to the evaluation process we use in selecting a top talent for our company.  One thing is certain in both instances, and that is that there is no guarantee.  At some point there is a leap of faith.  There are countless stories of that 1st round pick that went bust, or that 5th rounder who turns out to be a hall of famer. Or the athlete with wonderful skills, but a checkered background and they crash and burn.

Don’t waste your draft picks; avoid the six key “Hiring Horrors:”

  • Hiring from a position of desperation
  • Ill-defined selection criteria
  • Superficial questioning techniques
  • Too much reliance on the interview
  • Bypassing the reference check
  • Failure to validate using objective testing


There is no more important task in your career than hiring right, give it the diligence it’s due.


C.H.A.M.P… a disciplined approach to effective leadership

Exceptional leaders understand the value of human relations and the distinction between leadership, management, supervision and training. multiple demands combined with the increasing speed of information can lead to a loss of focus which impacts our effectiveness

What is it that great leaders do to avoid being swallowed up in these competing requirements, rendering them ineffective?  They recognize that leadership boils down to their ability to maintain focus on those practice areas which yield the greatest gain:  Coaching, Hiring, Assessing, Managing and Planning, an acronym which I have come to call CHAMP.  Great leaders are able to rise above the minutia and sustain allocating 80% of their time to these five critical high gain areas. Sadly, my experience is that few are able to sustain more than 15% of their time on these areas.

Let’s look at the components of each of these practice areas in greater detail:


COACHING:   Undoubtedly the highest order of human development available to managers. Great managers are able to take a step back from the frenetic pace, sift through the tasks and find ways to continuously coach their people.  When asked why they do not coach more, I am told, I do  not have the time.  My response,  “Coaching is not some adjunct part of your job… it IS the Job”

HIRING:  Leaders realize that there is no time in their business career when they have more to gain (or lose) than when they are hiring someone. They adhere to stringent guidelines when selecting and evaluating candidates and have learned to avoid six key “Hiring Horrors:”

  • Hiring from a position of desperation
  • Ill-defined selection criteria
  • Superficial questioning techniques
  • Too much reliance on the interview
  • Bypassing the reference check
  • Failure to validate using objective testing

ASSESSING TALENT:  The importance of assessing and benchmarking their team is important to leaders.  There is a need to know, in a very detailed way, the strengths and weaknesses of their team as a whole, as well as those of the specific individuals who comprise that team.  Objective assessments are part of any great manager’s toolkit.

MANAGING:  Many managers focus on the final result and leave the daily blocking and tackling to their employees.  Unfortunately this approach leaves a large gap between daily activity and an eventual sale, providing enormous pressure (but very little guidance) for the individual. Successful leaders have reverse engineered their goals (quotas) and have established metrics and activity standards (KPI’s) which hold their people to clearly defined activities.

PLANNING: A budget is NOT a plan, however  many companies confuse the two.  You must have a clearly defined roadmap as to where you are going  and then reverse thos objectives into smaller, quantifiable tactical “Chunks”


Read More about C.H.A.M.P.




Leadership lessons from Super Bowl XLIX

Shoveling my driveway this morning  (I live in Buffalo NY, that’s what we do!) I was reflecting on the Super Bowl, It occurred to me that there are several significant leadership lessons we might take from Super Bowl XLIX.  We saw two strong contestants fighting to the very end, not uncommon in the business world. We also saw two Coaches and their respective staffs strategize to gain a competitive analysis.  Almost 100 players played their hearts out for a full 60 minutes.  As I reflect on the battle, several points stood out which determined the outcome.  If we allow ourselves, we can take powerful leadership lessons from the event:

Adversity:  For the past 2 weeks we have heard incessantly about Deflate-gate.  Belichick and Brady stood steady, and rose above the distraction, maintained focus and in fact, drew strength from the challenge, which fueled their competitive desire to overcome. When faced with adversity leaders embrace the challenge.

Determination:  The plays down the stretch of both halves drew out the best in each player as we saw heroic plays by both sides. Whether it was incredible offensive plays or stellar defensive displays, each player seemed to peak when the chips were on the line.  Leaders WANT the ball.

Perseverance:  The Patriots overcame the single greatest 4th quarter deficit in history to battle back and win.  In response Seattle, playing desperate in the end, drove to the goal line before the misguided call that effectively ended the game. Leaders persevere knowing they will prevail.

Preparation:  Each team was uber-prepared for the task at hand, and people such as Malcolm Butler and Chris Mathews stepped up to make a difference.  Focus and preparation are the cornerstone of great leadership.

SWOT analysis:  Great leaders have great vision. They survey the landscape, assess the Opportunities and Threats, and take action.  They are OK with taking educated risks, not foolhardy emotional risks. Pete Carroll out thought himself, and may leave a legacy more as a recklessness dice roller and  not as  a genius.

Personal Accountability:  In the final analysis, Pete Carroll placed the blame… appropriately on his own shoulders for the bone-head call on 2 and 1. Leaders accept responsibility and ownership

Hedgehog:  Seattle strayed from their bread and butter, that which the can be best in the world at, and that which through the course of the year drove their engine… Marshawn (Beast-mode) Lynch.  Great leaders stick to their knitting and utilize their strengths.

Humility:  After a “sleepless night in Seattle”, Pete Caroll awoke to the realization that his Hubris led to the loss.  A great leader has Humility and perspective.  Then again, Pete Caroll will Persevere…

Assessments in the workplace

There are three significant trends pertaining to the United States workforce which merit consideration:
There is a growing shortage of qualified workers.
The workforce is increasingly mobile and less loyal.
Human Capital is fast becoming the most valuable asset for top performing companies.

DISC is a personal assessment tool used to improve work productivity, teamwork and communication. The use of behavioral assessments such as DiSC, Trimetrix, the Big Five, 360’s and the Predictive Index  are all vital assessment tools in effective communications and professional growth. There is a need for leaders to know, in a very detailed and objective way, the strengths and weaknesses of their team as a whole, the specific individuals who comprise that team and job candidates who will contribute to the corporate culture. A good assessment tool will offer insights into  motivators, competencies and behavioral tendencies

Assessments allow you to benchmark and measure skills and behaviors of top performers. They also allow you to create targeted training and coaching which will enhance individual behaviors. Valid and reliable assessments are part of any great manager’s toolkit.

Learn how you can make assessments work for you


Coach & Consultant

Hahn Training