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————February 23, 2017 ————————-




In dealing with a cable company it is important to establish a paper trail or a set of your own recorded sessions.

Starting a paper trail is easier than it sounds. All you have to do is write a letter to the cable compnay including all of the exchanges regarding the problem. For example if you received a bill that was in error, double billed, a different than the agreeed rate etc, out line it in a letter. If you call regarding the issue take good notes and get the names and emplyee ID of each person involved in the call. If the agent says they are going to contact theie supervisor ask for the supervisors name.

In most cases the name you get will be fictious so it is good to get some personal details such as: where they are located, if they are married, how many children to they have, just chit chat questions that will help build credability to your side of the story. This is important becasue the cable compay can erase the recordings they make of each conversation, ot parts of the concersation that support you position. Also they can alter or erase the the notes the agent makes in your account.

I spoke with two different agents on two seperate occasiions that suppoted my position that I was offered to terminate my service without penalty and was due a refund. A monthe later the collection department at CenturyLink called threatening me for non-payment. When I told the agent to check my file he said there notes in my file. He said he would put a note in my file regarding my disputing the charges. I asked him to read the note to me. He had it all wrong. I asked him to correct and he said he would fic it later.  I beleive it stayed the same IN CORRECT and very pro CenturyLink. I made notes of the conversation inculding the erronous notes, and included it in my letter to CenturyLink.

If you have the capability to record your teleohone contacts with the company that is best. Be sure to give them the same type of warning they give you about recording your calls.  They always say in a mechanical voice that this conversation may be recorded for training and quality assurance purposes. It is used as a leagal record when benefits the company. I am not a lawyer but I think you would have to tell each agent you talk with that the conversation is being recorded. All you have to say is you understand this call is being recorded. Don’t make it any more overt or threatening than they do. Mark the reocordings with a date and time stam and a begining and end so you easily find when you need it. Also never give up your orginal and always make copies of just the conversations you want to use.  If you include other material ot unusful conversations you will hurt your own case and give their attornys the opportunity to question you about anything that is on the tape.

Once you start a paper trail ask the cable company to communicate with you in writing anf do not answer their calls. If you do answer a call regarding your disputed bill tell them you are sorry but you cannot talk right now and please write you a letter.  Be polite, be firm, and hang up. Also make a note of the time and date of the call and what was said by each side. Keep your notes matter of fact and do not include opions, but do include things like your peerception that the call was harassing or threatening in nature.  Keep you notes together in a file of their own. Do no use a notebook with other information, notes or doddles as this will give their attorneys the opportunity to question you on the other entires if you introduce your notes into evidence in court.

Do not be afraid of small claims court. In most cases if you just stick to the facts and produce notes or recorings to support you position you will win,



I am thankful for the invitation from Career Press to review Susanne M. Paling’s new book The Sales Leader’s Problem Solver.

The Sales Leader’s Problem Solver is directly aimed at the problems sales leaders encounter managing a sales group. Although focused on sales the advice, lessons, and methodology is used to address problems that frequently arise in all first line supervision and management positions. In my experience, sales is the crucible of business where the fortunes of a company are forged by the heat of competition, the anvil of a quality sales force, and the hammer of management. In my opinion, more than any other career field; leading a sales force is one of the toughest management jobs there is. Gaining insight on how to address the more serious problems a sales leader may face is like being handed the proverbial key to success. Susanne M. Paling does just that: hands us key solutions to some of the most perplexing problems she has encounter in her 25 years as a sales manager, consultant and coach.

Although focused on managing a sales force, The Sales Leader’s Problem Solver is applicable to all who are managers and aspiring managers. Having a solid guide to steer you through some of the most perplexing problems you may encounter from both upper management and those you manage is like having and ace in the hole. It will strengthen any hand you are dealt. Being prepared is very important when you are dealing with your career.

Susanne M. Paling draws on her 25 years experience of managing, consulting and coaching to present 15 real life scenarios encountered in sales departments. By realistically framing the problem so the reader can understand the issue and the gravity of the situation. For example, most management problems are usually more complex than a single issue such as poor sales. A more salient issue is why are there poor sales? I think Susanne does a great job, the analysis phase where using the tools of the trade she develops charts and graphs to pin point the problem. The analysis is accomplished in a manner that is not personal or biased and illuminates the problems. In addition, the analysis speaks for itself and can be easily understood when briefing upper management. Armed with the facts a plan must be formulated. This is where Susanne works her magic in coming up with solutions that accomplish management’s goals without overly offending the problem sales person(s). In most cases the analysis speaks for itself and the sales person readily sees and understands the problem. Once the problem and the supporting data are on the table, Susanne demonstrates how to navigate to a solution. Often she advises allowing the sales person(s) time to think over the analysis and suggest a solution. Although not fool proof, allowing the employee to help come up with a solution usually enables the problem to be solved in an amicable manner.

The step-by-step methodology enables managers in all professions to use it effectively to address situations that may arise with employees. From framing the problem to the conclusion, including suggested analysis, dialog with the employee, suggested wording for memos and documents and incorporation of wording in job descriptions and other documents to prevent the same situation from reoccurring. I can easily visualize The Sales Leader’s Problem Solver being adapted to all professions. I highly recommend The Sales Leader’s Problem Solver to all managers or those who what to be managers

The PracticaL Mentor –

Title: The Sales Leader’s Problem Solver

Author: Suzanne M.Paling

Publisher: CAREER PRESS INC, Wayne NJ

Pages: 250




————-Book Reviews ———

The Sales Leader’s Problem Solver by Suzanne M. Paling

101 Best Answers To The Toughest Interview Questions by Rob Fry

All Hands On Deck by Peter J. Boni

The Practical Negotiator by Steven P. Cohen

The Titeless Leader by Nan S. Russell

How To Work For An Idiot by John Hoover PhD

The Young Professionals Guide To Managing by Aaron McDaniel

The Quick and Easy Performance Appraisal Phrase Book by Patrick Alain

They Don’t Teach Corporate In College By Alexandra Levit

The Next Gen Leader by Robert C. McMillan

Challenge The Ordinary by Linda D. Henman PhD

The Leadership Campaign by Scott Miller and David Morey

The Elegant Pitch by Mike Figliuolo

Could you benefit by hiring a career coach?

Do you ever think of how much help it would be to have a coach to help you make those tough decisions? Most of us are risk adverse, and it really holds us back from being all we can be. A life coach can make the difference of staying in our small comfort zone or moving ahead.

How to Find a Mentor and Why You Need One _ A good career move.

Mentors are people who have expertise and experience, and can help you shape your career, and improve your performance and professional reputation. Whether a friend, volunteer, or professional career coach, a mentor can objectively advise you in all areas. Some of try to decouple our personal and professional lives, but in this high tech world it is almost impossible to separate them. A facebook friend uses the media to sell products, and for a social media. The problem is that on her social page she used foul language, and posts and reposts things which many prospective clients may find offensive. This hurts her business. Although friends have hinted she should tone down her social page, she ignores them. A mentor would be more direct and tell her that her social facebook page is hurting her enterprise page. If she does not listen, the mentor will reinforce his advice with examples, and guide her to be more professional.

A mentor is not your boss. You do not have to listen or take a mentor’s advice, but a good mentor will be able to guide you over time to the proper path. Some times are egos will prevent us from seeing the wisdom in a mentor’s advice. A good mentor knows how to placate the ego and reach through our natural defense to criticism barriers. A good mentor is able to talk about any topic or problem with offending or embarrassing the client.

We all need mentors. Life is too short for each of us to learn everything through our own experience. In many cases it takes a long time to learn some things through experience, mainly because we don’t realize that we are doing something detrimental to our careers. I worked with a guy who thought he was a comedian. He played practical jokes, teased people, and told inappropriate jokes. He thought he was the life of the party and everyone liked him. When asked to tone it down he only laughed and try to make a joke of it. In essence he was killing and chances he had for advancement. All his hard work was negated by his behavior. The sad part is that his behavior was part of his success strategy.

How to Find a Mentor and Why You Need One
By Lindsay Olson
June 19, 2012

One of the best ways to reinvigorate your work life, boost your job search, or help guide your career path is to work with a mentor. A mentor can help guide you through common problems and make recommendations on how to improve your job performance.
Talking to a mentor about your career can help you make better decisions about moving to a new job, taking a promotion or asking for a raise. Typically, you would work with someone with experience in your industry, as she would be best equipped to understand what it takes to succeed in your field. If you’re starting out in the accounting field, you might find a mentor who runs an accounting practice. Finding someone who has had a career path similar to yours can help give you the direction and advice on how you can succeed.
Mentoring programs differ one to the next. Some are very formal and meet every week or so. Others are more organic. Maybe you exchange emails and have lunch once every few months. You get out of a mentoring program what you put in. Make it worth both your time and that of your mentor’s.
How to Find a Mentor
Some companies have formal mentor programs, designed to help you achieve specific goals. If your company doesn’t have such a program, create your own. At networking events, look for seasoned professionals who take an interest in you. Search LinkedIn for qualified professionals with similar interests, group affiliations, and career paths.
Once you pinpoint someone, begin by building a relationship with them. After all, if you’re going to spend time with this person each week or month, you want to make sure it’s a good fit for both of you. Ask her to lunch or coffee so you can get to know her. And when you feel like the relationship is growing, ask for advice—this can help take the relationship to that next level.
It’s important that you give some thought beforehand to what you’re looking for in a mentor. Just as you’re looking for the right one, you need to sell yourself as a mentee. You’re asking someone to take time out of their busy schedule to expend brain energy on you, so prove that you’re worth it.
And remember that your mentor is doing you a favor. Always show appreciation for the time spent. If your mentor gives you job leads or makes a connection, make sure you follow up and let her know what came out of it.
Working with a mentor can help you develop professionally and forge new relationships that can move you on your way. Take your mentor’s advice, even if you find it difficult to swallow. After all, that is why you sought a mentor in the first place.



Certified NLP Practitioner –
Why do I need someone to help me with my career? The idea of hiring a career coach is often met with resistance. Your mind generates all kinds of excuses not to seek the help of a coach or mentor. What can they tell me about myself that I don’t already know?

A coach or mentor is not a shrink who is going to psychoanalyze your problems and blame your failings on a childhood trauma. While there are most likely physiological underpinnings to some of your perceptions, most of your career challenges are a product of the workplace. Learning to successfully navigate the workplace is difficult for most of us because we bring our social game to a very competitive sport.

What real preparation do have to cope with difficult bosses and coworkers? Most if not all of your experience is obtained from family and friends, and a controlled academic environment. There are some very good lessons to learned from this beguine environment, the rules are much different and do not translate to the rough and tumble workplace environment where your career and livelihood hang in the balance. A good coach or mentor has been through it and gained first hand experience in coping with all types of workplace challenges. Learning by trial and error is often a long lonely road where a mis-step can be career ending. A career coach can help you get where you want to go in your career.

Why Hire A Coach?
Ten Terrific Ways To A More Powerful Life

Bill Cole, MS, MA
Founder and CEO
William B. Cole Consultants
Silicon Valley, California

A tennis coach, golf coach, swim coach, personal coach, business coach, executive mentor, financial planner, personal trainer, sport psychology coach. What do all these coaches have in common? Why work with a coach? A coach won’t do the work for you, but here is how a coach can help launch you to the next level:

1. A coach can be a confidant. You can tell your coach things you wouldn’t tell others, because a coach is trained to understand and be non-judgmental.

2. A coach can help you see your blind spots. Everyone, even the coach, has personal areas that are out of view or awareness until someone points them out. A coach is perfectly poised to perform this critical function.

3. A coach can provide objective feedback. Other people may have agendas. Your coach has your best interests in mind in providing feedback and counsel to you.

4. A coach provides another set of eyes. Even the top performers in the world have coaches to help them see what they themselves can’t see.

5. A coach can keep you accountable. Your coach can help you take on more responsibility by having you report weekly on your accomplishments and initiatives.

6. A coach can be a sounding board. Your coach can be another set of ears as you talk about the things that are bothering you. As you hear yourself have a conversation new personal realizations emerge.

7. A coach can be another source of creative ideas. You can brainstorm and try out new ideas, behaviors and mental processes as your coach provides a safe place to experiment.

8. A coach can help you create your vision. Your coach can assist you in developing your plans for success based on your values, personal strengths, background and assets.

9. A coach can help celebrate your successes and be a source of strength when you fail. Your coach can be a supportive and nurturing source of energy.

10. A coach can help you process life. Life is a process and a good coach can assist you in reviewing and reframing what happens in your business, your sports and your life!


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Are you looking for a career coach?. Most of us have talents and skills equal or better than our peers, but for some reason they seem to be doing so much better in their careers. What do they have that you don’t? A mentor! A source of coaching to discover and develop talents and find and seize opportunities, avoid problems, and overcome challenges. Every successful person has someone helping them. Why not you? Put the PracticaL Mentor in your corner- career and life coach. E-mail Confidential Inquires to

The PracticaL Mentor Forum Page: Most popular “Traits of successful people”- Mission Statement : The primary mission of the PracticaL Mentor is to address career strategies, issues, challenges and over come obstacles to achieve career goals. Recognizing we are each unique with individual personalities and values enabling us to perceive similar situations differently, there is a need to develop ideas, strategies and action plans that fit individual circumstances and personalities. By providing a forum for open discussion to develop analysis techniques and encourage sharing of career strategies, ideas, methods and tactics, the PracticaL Mentor will facilitate leveraging the collective contribution of each for the benefit of all.

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