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News Flash: We Are All in Sales
 December 2013
In This Issue
To Sell is Human
My New Blog
What's Your Theme for 2014?
Quick Links...

"Why Divas Need Make No Apology" from the Wall Street Journal 
Create 2014 Seminar sponsored by Joy Meredith
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please subscribe here!
Calling All Speakers
We're ready for the next wave of Aspiring Professional Speakers--are you one of them?
The National Speakers Association of Illinois will host the first Speakers Academy of 2014 beginning January 9 at the Illinois Institute of Technology in Wheaton. If you're interested in elevating your game as a speaker, come join us! The classes are held twice a month for three months and by the time you graduate, you'll have refined your topic, learned about sales and marketing and be able to build a sustainable speaking business. 


We're proud to have graduated another Chicago Speakers Academy class in November. Thanks to Co-Dean Steve Beck for his tireless support of this program. And welcome to new Co-Dean Conor Cunneen who has graciously offered to step in while Mr. Beck completes his year as NSA-IL President.

NSA-IL Fall 2013 Speakers Academy
NSA-IL Fall 2013  Chicago
Speakers Academy Graduates


Create 2014 with a 

Me-Mapping Seminar


You've heard me mention my friend and social media consultant Joy Meredith... and once again, I'd like to recommend her workshop, "Creating 2014." 

The workshop, being held from 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Saturday, January 11 at IIT in Wheaton, is based on the "Me-Mapping" process Joy created to help people map out their lives. What better way to begin a new year than to identify what's working, what isn't working, and map a new future?
For more information, visit Joy's website and learn more about her extraordinary workshop, her book and subscribe to her blogs. 
Contact Us
Vickie Austin
615 W. Front Street
Suite 201
Wheaton, IL  60187
630-510-1900 (ofc)
312-213-1795 (mobile)
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Daniel Pink, the prolific and engaging author of five best-selling books, opens his newest book with a story about Norman Hall, the last Fuller Brush salesman in America. Those of us over forty remember the image of the Fuller Brush man, a smooth-talking stranger who knocked at your door and talked you into buying things you didn't know you needed. Between the Fuller Brush man and Willy Loman, the hapless father portrayed in the dark play by Arthur Miller, Death of a Salesman, our opinions and sensibilities around sales people is less than flattering.
However, according to Dan Pink in To Sell is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others, we are all in sales. Mr. Pink did a time audit of his own schedule and found that much to his surprise, he's a salesman. "I don't sell minivans in a car dealership or bound from office to office pressing cholesterol drugs on physicians," he writes, "... it turns out that I spend a significant portion of my days trying to coax others to part with resources."
Like Mr. Pink, we resist the thought that we're in the same category as those smarmy guys from the movie Glengarry Glen Ross. But think about your own day: how much time do you spend persuading and negotiating? We begin our careers in sales from the time we're children at the grocery store, wheedling our parents to buy us a treat. Later, we learn to negotiate the schoolyard and within years, find ourselves using those same skills in the workplace.
We can resist the idea that we're in sales, but it makes more sense to get this wonderful book and learn about "Rebirth of a Salesman" (chapter one: "We're All in Sales Now"), "How to Be" and "What to Do," a guidebook for translating your own agenda into results. If you're on a mission to make a difference with others--and I find that most people are--this book will give you a fresh perspective. Welcome to the world of sales. The first step, like all recovery programs, is acceptance.
Bloggedy Blog Blog--Join Me!


After some fits and starts, I've joined the Blogging Revolution and love it. My blog focuses on networking, strategic planning, and business and career success and explores the power of your "Golden Rolodex," a metaphor for all the people you know who can help you with your goals and aspirations.


Some of my blogposts have included "The Secret of Success," a recap of a TED Talk by Angela Lee Duckworth and her studies on the power of what she calls "grit"; my observation in "Feed Me, Seymour" that social media is a lot like the plant Audrey II in Little Shop of Horrors, an insatiable entity that needs constant feeding; and lessons in leadership from Tina Fey's character in the TV show 30 Rock, "Everything I Need to Know in Business I Can Learn from Liz Lemon."


Please visit my blog and post your own thoughts & opinions--that's what blogging is all about! And while you're there, I hope you'll subscribe. 

What's Your 'Theme' for 2014?

We're on the cusp of a brand new year. Each year I like to create a theme for the year, and I invite you to do the same.

This past year, my theme was "Execution." I was inspired by the book by Larry Bossidy and Ram Charan and put the book out in plain sight in my office as a reminder throughout the year. In anticipation of the New Year, after trying on several concepts, I settled on a theme that lights me up: 2014 will be "The Year of the EveryDay Diva."   
"Maria Callas" by Marilyn Szabo
You may remember that I was featured this year in an article by Wall Street Journal reporter Elizabeth Bernstein, who sent out a query asking for "divas" to quote in her article. I was thrilled to be included in her story called "Why Divas Need Make No Apology." For several years I've offered a talk called "EveryDay Diva: Having It All Without Losing Ourselves," and I saw this as a chance to share my philosophy of divahood with WSJ readers. Gentlemen, this includes you, too--just substitute the word "diva" for "divo," as my friend Bill Lui, management consultant and recently appointed Asian ambassador to the city of Napervillehas done. He read the article, saw himself in it and called to connect--just one of the wonderful results of being featured in the Wall Street Journal.
I've redefined the word "diva" to mean someone who 1) knows what she wants; 2) knows how to get it and most importantly 3) honors the people who support her (AKA "my posse"). In the spirit of this definition, I declare 2014 "The Year of the EveryDay Diva." I vow to be crystal clear about what I want; do the steps necessary to accomplish those things and honor the many people who support me along the way. Thanks to you for your support!
Now, what's YOUR theme going to be for 2014? 

Vickie AustinWe've had some snow these past few weeks so there's the chance of a White Christmas here in Wheaton, IL.


Whatever holiday you celebrate--Christmas, Kwanzaa, Hanukkah or the Pagan Solstice--I hope this finds you surrounded by the ones you love and eager for this next chapter, 2014, to begin. I vow to be in touch more often (I promise) and share The Year of the EveryDay Diva with you along the way.



Vickie Austin 

CHOICES Worldwide

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