Randy Cantrell

Randy Cantrell is the founder of Bula Network, LLC - an executive leadership advisory company helping leaders leverage the power of others through peer advantage, online peer advisory groups. Interested in joining us? Visit ThePeerAdvantage.com

My Failed Attempt (So Far) To Make Sense Of It All

I’ve made sense of some things, just not all things.

Last week I paid for and took the new online assessment tool, StandOut. This is a Marcus Buckingham product. He co-wrote (with Donald O. Clifton) the book, Now, Discover Your Strengths.

When I began my business career companies regularly used polygraph exams for pre-hiring assessment. Hard to believe, but it was common practice in the 70’s and into the 80’s. Experience taught me that the polygraph exams weren’t nearly as valuable as the opinions of the examiner administering the test. I went to greater lengths to find an examiner I trusted than most because that was what I valued most. The fact is, I’ve always trusted observation – body language, tone, personality, demeanor, eye movement, response and communication skills – more than any test or profile.

Personality profiles and other forms of assessment fascinate me. I have used a variety of tests designed to show us how people are wired. For many years I used the DISC profile during the pre-hire process, but I always used it after being convinced I was going to hire the candidate. I wouldn’t offer a candidate a job until I got the results of the DISC profile. The outcome of the profile never affected my decision to hire. The DISC profile helped me see ways I could better communicate and coach the person once I did hire them. I found it helpful, but it was just one piece of the roadmap I used to lead companies.

But this short video isn’t really about assessment tests or profiles – well, not entirely.*

A few years ago I revisited my interest in profile testing when Tom Rath‘s book, StrengthFinder 2.0, was released. My interest was no longer in the pre-hiring process. Now, I was interested in personal discovery and development. Those remain the focus.

The StandOut profile indicated I’m a person who tries to make sense of it all. Life is a puzzle and I’m a guy who is constantly trying to put the pieces together. It’s true. At least I feel like it’s true. It doesn’t mean I’m successful all the time.

Today, I focus on just one little business phenomenon that has constantly puzzled me. I can’t figure it out. I confess. I’m beaten. The puzzle is too complex. My mind, too simple.

Have a great weekend,

*I’m planning a show on profiles and assessment tests. Do you have experience with one that you think is the cat’s meow? Would you be willing to join me on an upcoming podcast to discuss your use of it? Drop me an email or leave me a voice mail.

Episode 91 – I Don’t Believe In The Law Of Attraction, But I Do Believe In The Power Of Head Room

Podcast: Download

You got up this morning feeling great. You had a good night’s sleep and you’re rather excited about the day ahead. Then, an email hits your inbox and suddenly everything changes. In a FLASH.

Suddenly, you’re feeling drained. You’re sad, unhappy, nervous, anxious or feeling a variety of other emotions that cripple performance.

One email. One message has managed to completely alter your feelings and negatively affect your emotions. It happens to all of us.

We have to manage how we feel – our emotions. Don’t just surrender to the adversity. It’ll smack you around, knock you to the ground, then stand over you and mock you. What are you gonna do about it? Well, you must do something about it. Fight back.

We need emotional head room. Our feelings play a big role in how well we perform. Performance fuels success.

I don’t believe in The Law of Attraction. It’s called a law by clever marketers. It’s a theory. And a poor one at that, but some people believe it…because they want it to be true. Wishing it won’t make it so. However, I do believe in emotional head room. That’s the subject of today’s show.

Mentioned in today’s show:

• Proverbs 23:7 “As a man thinks in his heartso is he.”
Muhammad Ali – He may have invented smack-talking
Proof that Ali knew how to manage his emotions, and how to impact the emotions of his opponents
• And still more proof

Social Media For The Simple or Simple Social Media

Perhaps that title should have a question mark at the end of it. You think?

They’re one and the same, at least in my mind.

There are 3 things – components – that I believe are vital to effective social media behavior:

a. Caring
b. Sharing
c. Like-ability

When you’re asked to explain social media to people with no online experience, what advice do you give?


Why Be In A Business You Must Always Defend?

Businesses have a life span. Some live to be very old. Others die young. None are immortal.

Some get sick, but they get well. Others get sick, then get sicker.

Some businesses die on their own, while others are euthanized.

The same is true of careers. Our professional lives aren’t often diagrammed by a never-ending upward trajectory. They sometimes stumble, falter and take a nose-dive. At times they have to be reinvented. Like the US Marines, sometimes we encounter problems in our career and we have to improvise.

If you’ve got a business – or career – that is always under fire…take heart. There are probably opportunities within reach. You have to get some focus and clarity so you can see them.


Episode 90 – How I Turned An Investment Of $186.14 Into An Utter Waste Of Time

Podcast: Download

Internet marketing is full of snakes who want your money. We all love our dreams though. And most of us dream of more money!

A person buys a couple of domain names. Cost $15.74.

They invest in a year’s worth of shared hosting. Cost $83.40

They use WordPress, which is free, but decide on a premium theme. Cost $87.

Grand total of starting an online business capable of earning tens of thousands, perhaps more? $186.14

Three months pass. Nothing.

Six months passes. Still nothing.

Undeterred, another month passes. Nothing. Now depression sets in. Funk hit.

Hardheaded persistence prevails and another five months pass before they cry, “Uncle!”

They’ve managed to turn an annual investment (it’s really an expense) of $186.14 into an utter waste of time. That’s if they’re lucky.

The unlucky people have spent far more, in both time and money. They’ve purchased one $1997 information product after another. They’re on every Guru’s email list. They’ve purchased from all the big names. Thousands of dollars have been spent fueling their dream. They’re convinced success is happening for everybody with an online endeavor. They just lack the information necessary, but that next Guru Launch is going to be the missing link to their online success. They’ve foolishly swallowed lies or anecdotal evidence. Like lottery players all over the country, they embrace the dream of “getting lucky.”

Here’s the Wikipedia entry for the phrase “anecdotal evidence” –

The expression anecdotal evidence refers both to evidence that is factually unreliable, as well as evidence that may be true but cherry-picked or otherwise unrepresentative of typical cases.[1] In other words, there are two distinct meanings:

(1) Evidence in the form of an anecdote or hearsay is called anecdotal if there is doubt about its veracity; the evidence itself is considered untrustworthy.

(2) Evidence, which may itself be true and verifiable, used to deduce a conclusion which does not follow from it, usually by generalizing from an insufficient amount of evidence. For example “my grandfather smoked like a chimney and died healthy in a car crash at the age of 99” does not disprove the proposition that “smoking markedly increases the probability of cancer and heart disease at a relatively early age”. In this case, the evidence may itself be true, but does not warrant the conclusion.

In both cases the conclusion is unreliable; it may not be untrue, but it doesn’t follow from the “evidence”.

Evidence can be anecdotal in both senses: “Goat yogurt prolongs life: I heard that a man in a mountain village who ate only yogurt lived to 120.”

The term is often used in contrast to scientific evidence, such as evidence-based medicine, which are types of formal accounts. Some anecdotal evidence does not qualify as scientific evidence because its nature prevents it from being investigated using the scientific method. Misuse of anecdotal evidence is a logical fallacy and is sometimes informally referred to as the “person who” fallacy (“I know a person who…”; “I know of a case where…” etc. Compare with hasty generalization). Anecdotal evidence is not necessarily representative of a “typical” experience; statistical evidence can more accurately determine how typical something is.

Do not trust an Internet marketer selling information products for $1997.

Resist the temptation. You can learn how to build a business without supporting these people. Sadly, some people still feel compelled to keep buying. Convinced there are secrets they don’t yet know, they read every sales letter, open every email and watch every sales video. Resisting the BUY button is difficult, even though the credit card bills keep on rolling in.

Don’t let that be YOU. Protect yourself.


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