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HARVEY MACKAYS

ABCs

OF SUCCESS
Including

The ABCs of Selling, Leadership, Negotiating,


Networking, Team Building and Entrepreneurship

Contents
Biography.................................................... 1
Introduction................................................ 2
ABCs of Selling........................................... 3
ABCs of Leadership..................................... 9
ABCs of Negotiating................................. 15
ABCs of Networking................................. 21
2012 by Harvey Mackay.
All rights reserved.
No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form by any
means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying or by any
information storage retrieval system, without written permission from
Harvey Mackay. Inquiries should be addressed to Harvey Mackay,
MackayMitchell Envelope Company.
Published by MackayMitchell Envelope Company
2100 Elm Street Southeast
Minneapolis, MN 55414
Manufactured in the United States of America

ABCs of Team Building............................. 27


ABCs of Entrepreneurship......................... 33

INTRODUCTION

HARVEY MACKAY
Harvey Mackay has written seven New York
Times bestselling books, three reached #1, and
two were named among the top 15 inspirational
business books of all time Swim With The
Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive and Beware The
Naked Man Who Offers You His Shirt. His latest
book, The Mackay MBA of Selling in the Real
World (November 2011) hit #1 on the Wall Street
Journal Business bestseller list and #2 on USA
Today Money list. His books have sold 10 million
copies in 80 countries and have been translated
in 46 languages. Harvey is a nationally syndicated
columnist whose weekly business advice appears
in 100 newspapers and magazines around the
country. He was named one of the top five speakers in the world by Toastmasters International
and speaks to corporate audiences around the
world. Harvey is chairman of the $100 million
MackayMitchell Envelope Company in Minneapolis, which he founded in 1960. He and his wife,
Carol Ann, have been married 52 years and have
three children and eleven grandchildren.

Not long ago, I was listening as one of my


grandchildren practiced his ABCs. He had a little
picture book that helped him remember what
the letters stood for, and he studied it intently,
determined to be the first in his class to know all
the letters and words. With his determination, I
knew he would master the alphabet in no time
at all.
As he worked, I started thinking about what
those letters mean to me, after a lifetime in
business and years of helping young and
not-so-young people move their careers
and businesses forward.
How many times have you heard the expression:
Its as simple as ABC?
Good business is not simple. In fact, its very
hard work. Mastering the fundamentals is job
#1. When it comes to business, the simple ABCs
can help you organize your priorities. I have
developed six ABC lists that focus on critically
important areas of business: selling, leadership,
negotiating, networking, team building and
entrepreneurship. I didnt draw pictures, but
these are the words in my alphabet book that
I hope will help your business too.

ABCs of

No matter how much my company grows,


nothing happens until someone makes a sale.
Ive spent a lifetime selling everything from
envelopes to ideas for sports stadiums. Ive
pitched prospects for charitable contributions and helped close the deal on a Super
Bowl bid. No matter what the product, the
concepts are essentially the same. Heres what
works for me.

Availability for your customers is essential,


so they can reach you with questions, concerns or reorders.

Believe in yourself and your company, or


find something else to sell.

Customers arent always right, but if you


want to keep them as your customers, find
a way to make them right.

Deliver more than you promise.

Education is for life never stop learning.

Follow up and follow through. Never leave


a customer hanging.

Goals give you a reason to go to work every


day. When you reach your goals, set higher
ones!

Humanize your selling strategy by learning


everything you can about your customers.

I is the least important letter in selling.

Quality can never be sacrificed if you want


to keep your customers satisfied.

Join trade organizations and community


groups that will help you both professionally
and personally, such as Toastmasters, Chamber of Commerce or Junior Achievement.

Relationships are precious: They take time


to develop and are worth every minute you
invest in them.

Know your competitors and their products


as well as you know your own.

Service is spelled serve us in companies


that want to stay in business for a long time.

Listen to your customers or theyll start talking to someone else.

Trust is central to doing business with anyone. Without it, you have another word that
begins with T: Trouble.

Maybe is the worst answer a customer can


give. No is better than maybe. Find out what
you can do to turn it into a yes.

Unlimited potential is possible whether you


sell computers or candy. You are the only one
who can limit your potential.

Networking is among the most important


skills a salesperson can develop. Someone you
know knows someone you need to know.

Volunteer: Its always good to give back.


Youll probably find that you get more than
you give, and there is no shortage of organizations that need your help.

Opportunities are everywhere. Keep your


antennae up.

Winning doesnt necessarily mean beating


everyone else. A win-win situation is the best
of both worlds.

Price is not the only reason customers buy


your product, but its a good reason.

X-ray and catscan your customers so that


you know everything about them so you
can serve them better.

You is a word your customers need to hear


often, as in What can I do for you?

Zeal is a critical element in your presentations, service and life in general. Let your
enthusiasm shine through!

Mackays Moral:
Now you know my ABCs
sales skills from A to Z.

Some things never change including


the importance of knowing how to
treat your customers and what really
matters in your relationships. And as
you can see, most of these items cover
far more than just business.
Someday, I think my grandchildren
will still be able to use my little
alphabet book. Nothing would make
me prouder.

is for accountability. When President Harry


Truman said The buck stops here, he was
demonstrating that he was willing to take the
blame along with the praise. Leaders accept
responsibility for their actions as well as
those that report to them.

is for boundaries. Effective leaders respect


personal and professional boundaries. In other
words, they never expect their followers to do
something they would not do themselves.

is for courage. Tough times and tough


choices require courageous leaders. Doing
the right thing instead of the easy thing is a
mark of courage.

is for decisions. Good decision-making


skills are priceless. Remember, not making a
decision is a decision in itself.

is for enthusiasm. My mantra: Do what


you love, love what you do, and youll never
work a day in your life.

is for fearless. Leaders should adopt Franklin Roosevelts philosophy: The only thing
we have to fear is fear itself.

is for growth. This includes your growth as


a leader, your employees growth to reach
their potential and your companys growth to
achieve goals.

ABCs of

As children, we played follow the leader


for hours on end. The crazier the route and
antics, the more we liked it. Being the leader
was the best part. As working adults, follow
the leader takes on a whole new meaning.
Leadership is an art and a skill. Its hard work
that is extremely rewarding and occasionally
completely thankless. What traits make a
great leader? These are my thoughts:

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is for heart. A good decision must factor in


the human element. When your head and
your heart say the same thing, you can bet
its the right answer.

is for organization. This is a two-fer: your


personal organization and the organization
you lead. Your office may be a disaster area,
but make sure your mind is organized. The
organization you lead should always be foremost on your list of priorities.

is for influence. Leadership doesnt mean


getting people to do their jobs; it means getting people to do their best.

is for people person. You are leading people,


not just a company.

is for judgment. A leader must demonstrate


consistently good judgment in order to set
the standard for the organization. Followers
depend on consistent, level-headed judgment.

P
Q

is for knowledge. No one expects the leader


to know everything, but everyone expects the
leader to know whom to ask when they dont
have the information at hand.

is for quick-thinking. A leader must be


able to think on the spot, even if the answer
is we need to give this more thought. A
leader can figure out the difference.

is for learning. Always be learning something


lifelong learning is an important attribute
for a leader.

is for recognition. Be sure to heap recognition on those who have worked hard and
achieved. Sharing the credit doesnt diminish
you, it demonstrates your ability to hire well
and acknowledge achievement.

is for strength. A strong leader never waivers


on values, ethics or commitment. Thats a
very tall order, but absolutely essential.

is for team builder. Whether you are a team


of two or two thousand, as a leader you are
also cheerleader-in-chief. Go, team, go only
works if you provide the right environment.

is for mentor. Just as you needed some help


to get to the top, offer your expertise to the
next generation of leaders.

is for new. Never be afraid to try something


new, even if the old way isnt broken. The
results might be better than you expected.

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is for ubiquitous. Your presence and influence must be felt everywhere. Make sure the
team knows whom to follow.

is for visible. Not only should your presence


be felt, you should be personally present at
events large and small. Get to know your
staff beyond their working titles.

is for wisdom. No one is born wise, but


some people learn faster than others what
makes a business tick.

is for example. (Im not a good speller.) If


you want people to follow the leader, you
must set a proper course. Inspire those you
lead with your example.

is for yeomans service. A leader has to be


willing to work harder than everyone else in
the organization. Adopt a servant mentality
to be a truly effective leader.

is for zest. Let your passion show, and see if


it isnt contagious!

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Mackays Moral:
Take the lead and
be a superstar!

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ABCs of

As a kid, I practiced the art of negotiating


daily with my parents and teachers. I continued to hone my skills as I grew, eventually
buying a small struggling envelope company.
Over decades as a business owner and salesman, Ive probably spent as much time in
negotiations as any other part of my job. I
know you cant negotiate anything unless you
absolutely know the market. And I always let
the other person talk first.

is for authority. Always, before you start any


negotiation, look beyond the title and make
sure that the person youre dealing with is
in a position of authority to sign off on the
agreement.

is for beware the naked man who offers you


his shirt. If the customer cant or wont pay
what the deal is worth, you dont need the
sale.

is for contracts. The most important term


in any contract isnt in the contract. Its dealing with people who are honest. Whenever
someone says, Forget the contract, our word
is good enough, maybe yours is, but his or
hers usually isnt.

is for dream. A dream is always a bargain no


matter what you pay for it.

is for experience. When a person with


money meets a person with experience, the
person with the experience winds up with
the money, and the person with the money
winds up with the experience.

is for facts. Gather all the facts you can on


both sides of the negotiation. Remember,
knowledge does not become power until it
is used.

Those valuable lessons have become my


ABCs of negotiating.

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is for guts. It takes plenty of guts to hold


firm on your position, and just as many to
know when to make concessions.

is for honesty. Not only is it the best policy,


it is the only policy. Your reputation for
honest dealings will keep doors open that get
slammed in others faces.

is for never say no for the other person.


Make them turn down the deal, not you.

is for options. Keep your options open,


because the first negotiation isnt usually the
only negotiation.

is for positioning. They can always tell when


you need the sale more than they need the
deal.

is for questions. Question every angle,


motive and outcome. Not out loud necessarily, but so that you are satisfied that you
understand the oppositions strategy and can
respond.

is for information. In the long run, instincts


are no match for information.

is for judgment. If a deal sounds too good to


be true, it is.

is for know about no. If you cant say yes, its


no. Period.

is for leaks. The walls have ears. Dont


discuss any business where it can be overheard by others. Almost as many deals have
gone down in elevators as elevators have
gone down.

is for reality check. In any negotiation, the


given reason is seldom the real reason. When
someone says no based on price, money is
almost never the real reason.

is for smile and say no, no, no until your


tongue bleeds. If the deal isnt right for you,
stay calm, stay pleasant and just say no.

is for maybe the worst answer you can get.

is for timing. People go around all their lives


saying, What should I buy? What should I
sell? Wrong questions: When should I buy?
When should I sell? Timing is everything.

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is for ultimatum. Never give an ultimatum


unless you mean it.

is for visualization. If you can visualize


your presentation, the objections that will
be tossed back at you, and your response to
those means you are already ahead of the
game.

is for win-win. A negotiation doesnt have to


have a winner and a loser. Everyone should
come out winning something.

is for (e)xit strategy. Decide in advance


when you will withdraw from negotiating, when you can no longer achieve what
you need or when the other side cannot be
trusted to negotiate fairly.

is for yield. What will this deal yield for you?


What will you have to yield to make it work?

is for zero in on what you want, what you


need, and what you are willing to concede.

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Mackays Moral:
Agreements prevent
disagreements.

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ABCs of

If I had to name the single characteristic


shared by all the truly successful people Ive
met over a lifetime, Id say it is the ability to
create and nurture a network of contacts. I
could lose all my money and all my factories,
but leave me my contacts and Ill be back
as strong as ever in three to five years.
Networking is that important.
The alphabet is a great place to start as you
build your network organize your contacts
from A to Z. The ABCs of networking must
include these ideas.

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is for antennae, which should be up every


waking moment. Never pass up an opportunity to meet new people.

is for birthdays. Its always advantageous to


know the birthdays of your contacts. You
wouldnt believe how much business our sales
reps write up when they call on their customers birthdays.

is for contact management system. Have


your data organized so that you can cross
reference entries and find the information
you need quickly.

is for dig your well before youre thirsty.

is for exchange and expand. When two


people exchange dollar bills, each still has
only one dollar. But when two people
exchange networks, they each have access to
two networks.

is for Facebook and all other social media.


These sites open unlimited possibilities for
networking. Use them wisely.

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is for gatekeeper. There usually is a trusted


assistant trained to block or grant your
access. Dont waste their time, and make
sure you acknowledge their significant role
in reaching the boss.

is for a network of contacts. A network can


enrich your life.

is for outgoing. Be the first to introduce


yourself, lend a hand, or send congratulations for a job well done.

is for people. You have to love people to be a


good networker.

is for hearing. Make note of news you hear


affecting someone in your network so you
can reference it at the appropriate time.

is for information. You cant (and shouldnt)


talk about business all the time. Learn everything you can about your contacts families,
pets, hobbies and interests. Humanize your
approach.

is for quality. A large network is worthless


unless the people in it can be counted on to
answer in an emergency at 2 a.m

is for job security, which you will always


have if you develop a good network.

is for keeping in touch. If your network is


going to work, you have to stay plugged in
and keep the wires humming.

is for reciprocity. You give; you get. You no


give; you no get. If you only do business with
people you know and like, you wont be in
business very long.

is for lessons. The first real networking


school I signed up for after I graduated from
college was Toastmasters. Dale Carnegie
schools are designed to achieve similar goals.

is for six degrees of separation, the thought


that there is a chain of no more than six
people that link every person. Someone you
know knows someone who knows someone
you want to know.

is for telephone. Landline, cell, internet


this is a critical tool for staying in touch with
your network.

is for mentors. In the best of all possible


worlds, your role models can become your
mentors, helping you, advising you, guiding
you, even lending you their network as you
build your own.
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is for urgency. Dont be slow to answer the


call, even if you never expect to have your
effort repaid.

is for visibility. Youve got to get involved in


organizations and groups to get connected,
but dont confuse visibility with credibility.
You have to give in order to get.

is not only for whom you know, but also for


who knows you?

is for the extra mile. Your network contacts


will go the extra mile for you, and you must
be willing to do the same for them.

is for yearly check-in. Find a way, even if its


just a holiday card, to stay in touch.

is for zip code do you have plenty represented in your network?

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Mackays Moral:
You dont have to know
everything as long as you
know the people who do.

26

ABCs of

Team-building is especially critical in this


era of reorganizations, layoffs and downsizing. Blending personalities and developing
individual strengths to achieve optimal
results requires special skills. The following
concepts are what I consider the fundamentals of team building.

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is for action. No team can function without


a plan of action, even when the final outcome is to take no action at all.

is for brainpower. If two heads are better


than one, I would submit that a cohesive,
well-assembled team should have enough
brainpower to attack any project.

is for cooperation and communication.


Team members need to cooperate, even if
they dont necessarily agree. Clear communication is the roadmap to cooperation.

is for dedication. As members of a team, you


must be dedicated to the goals of the team,
or you are on the wrong team.

is for ears. Use your ears more than your


mouth because listening skills are critical for
team success.

is for fun. Work should be fun, and working


together is usually a lot more fun than working alone.

is for the group effort. The motto needs to


be all for one and one for all in order to be
a real team.

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is for help. Ask for it if you need it, and offer


it if someone else needs yours.

is for the ideas that come from brainstorming and picking each others brains. Let the
ideas flow and then choose those which hold
the most potential.

is for open mind. Team members need to be


open to options they may not have considered, and willing to expand their perspectives
to find the best answers.

is for planning. A plan doesnt need to be


rigid to be effective, but it must provide
enough direction to keep the team on course.

is for juggling. Combining all the companys


needs and desired results will often require a
juggling act, but a competent team will be
able to achieve that balance.

is for questions. Asking questions is the best


path to finding solutions. Dont be afraid of
asking any question. If you dont understand
something, chances are others dont either.

is for kinetic energetic, dynamic team


members keep things moving.

is for leadership. Every team needs a leader,


and every leader needs to be able to depend
on the team.

is for results. The whole point of forming a


team is to achieve results. The only variation
on that theme is that the results may not be
what had been originally anticipated.

is for motivation. Nothing motivates a team


like trust placed in them by management to
solve a problem.

is for solutions, which differ from results in


that there may be more than one solution to
any given problem. Then the team can
implement the best choice.

is for negotiate. Give and take is as important


within a team as it is with outside clients.

is for time management. A well-managed


team uses their meeting and planning time
efficiently, and understands when it is time
to finish the project.

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is for unity. Once a decision is made, the


team needs to be unified to implement the
plans. If the team cant act as a unit, then it
may be necessary to reconfigure the team.

is for voice. Every team member has to have


a voice in the proceedings, and it is up to the
team leader to insure that all voices are heard.

is for work ethic. Each member needs to


complete the given assignments and should
have confidence that others will demonstrate
the same commitment.

is the X factor the chemistry that makes a


team productive because all members are
committed to the same goal.

is for yes say it as often as you can. Yes, I


can help. Yes, thats a good idea. Yes, lets
move ahead. Yes, we did it!

is for zeal. Passion, eagerness and enthusiasm


are contagious; share your zeal with the rest
of your team.

31

Mackays Moral:
The team you build will
determine the
business you build.

32

ABCs of

I was recently asked by master marketer Jay


Abraham to appear on his radio program,
The Ultimate Entrepreneur along with
several others including Stephen Covey and
Mark Cuban. In that company, I knew I had
my work cut out for me!
Start with the basics: What better way than
to create the ABCs of entrepreneurship?

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is for ability. Entrepreneurs excel at identifying problems and solving them fast. They
anticipate obstacles and opportunities.

is for business plan. A successful entrepreneur


must make one before doing anything else.

is for cash because all entrepreneurs need


money. Use it wisely, even when you are rolling in it.

is for delegate. You know what you do well


and what you do poorly. Decide what to
outsource and delegate these tasks to others.

is for ethics. If you have integrity, nothing


else matters. If you dont have integrity, nothing else matters. Always act like your mother
is watching.

is for failure. Few entrepreneurs make it the


first time they try. If you can survive to fight
again, you havent failed.

is for giving because givers are the biggest


gainers. If you truly believe in what you are
doing, give it all youve got.

is for humor, as in dont take things too


seriously. You are going to experience tough
times and humor helps pull you through.
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is for interpersonal relationships. Those


with good people skills are able to adjust and
survive as their business grows.

is for passion. When you have passion, you


speak with conviction, act with authority,
and present with zeal.

is for journal, as in writing down your


thoughts and ideas, as well as picking the
brains of experts. Dont forget to review your
journal periodically for things you forgot,
missed or overlooked.

is for quantify. Your goals must be measurable, so its necessary to have a standard to
hold them to. You cant keep track of your
progress if you dont know where you want
to go.

is for knowledgeable. Successful entrepreneurs are constantly updating themselves


regarding their product and industry.

is for risk. Entrepreneurs must be willing to


take risks. Sometimes you have to triple your
failure rate to triple your success.

is for looking forward. A successful entrepreneur looks ahead, around corners, and as far
into the future as possible.

is for mentor. Find a tiger, preferably


someone whos been around the block.
Retired professionals are a marvelous
resource for this kind of advice.

is for self-survey. Do you really want to do


this or are you just trying to escape your own
problems? If youre going to be an entrepreneur, you have to believe in yourself more
than you believe in anything else in
the world.

is for target audience. If your concept is


going to succeed, you have to identify a
realistic target audience, big enough to be
profitable yet small enough for you to service
it thoroughly.

is for unflappable. Beyond the dont sweat


the small stuff mentality, you need to keep
a level head and an open mind.

is for never giving up. Amend your plans if


needed, but keep your eye on the prize.

is for opportunities. Whether you see a need


that is unfulfilled, or a product that could be
improved, or a problem screaming for a solution, you are seeing an opportunity.
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is for veracity. The truth, the whole truth,


and nothing but the truth is what your
employees and customers deserve from you.
Anything less will earn you a bad reputation.

is for work hard. And then work harder. And


keep working as hard as you can until you
get the results you are looking for. And then
keep working hard.

is for exercise regularly. (Pardon my spelling.) If you dont take care of yourself, you
cant be at your best.

is for years, which is how long you may have


to work to get your idea off the ground.

is for zookeeper. When youre running the


place, its up to you to keep the dangerous
things in their cages while bringing the
visitors through the gates.

37

Mackays Moral:
Being an entrepreneur is
a lot like the ABCs
start at the beginning and
follow your plan through
to the end.

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Praise from Harveys 7 New York Times


bestselling books:
Harvey Mackay may be the most talented man
I have met.
Lou Holtz
Harveys business acumen shows through on every page
so much warmth, wisdom, and wittiness.
Billy Graham

He is fast, smart, funny and frighteningly right.


Gloria Steinem

Harvey Mackay is a master of brief, biting, and


brilliant business wit and wisdom.
Tom Peters

A must for everyone and anyone entering


the business world.
Donald Trump

A mother lode of timely, hard-earned, bite-size, streetsmart golden nuggets invaluable for job seekers,
employed or unemployed.

Stephen Covey

Harvey Mackay is the only person Ill listen to while


standing in shark-infested waters real stories from the
real world with real solutions.
Larry King

Harvey Mackay is one of the greatest writers of our time.


Norman Vincent Peale

Harvey Mackay is a champ at sales and he doesnt pull


any punches with his heavyweight advice.

Muhammad Ali
39

DONT MISS
HARVEYS
NEWEST BOOK
filled with decades

of solid-gold selling
wisdom and
inspirational lessons!

Harvey Mackays other best-selling books are


available in book stores everywhere:

Swim With the Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive


Beware the Naked Man Who Offers You His Shirt:
Do What You Love, Love What You Do, and Deliver More
Than You Promise

Dig Your Well Before Youre Thirsty:


The Only Networking Book Youll Ever Need

Pushing the Envelope: All the Way to the Top


We Got Fired! And Its The Best Thing That
Ever Happened To Us
Use Your Head To Get Your Foot In The Door:
Job Search Secrets No One Else Will Tell You
Visit HarveyMackay.com for more information.

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