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  • 14-May-2024 10:08 PM | Anonymous
    A monthly newsletter from the Rochester Professional Consultants Network.

    Steve Royal

    Rochester Professional Consultants Network (RPCN) was very fortunate to have Steve Royal as a member since 1992. For 32 years, Steve participated in meetings and contributed his time and expertise to us. Steve's contributions included:

    • Being a member of the RPCN Board of Directors
    • Facilitating the Technical Forum for 25 years
    • Being the Secretary for the Board of Directors for 15 years
    • Being RPCN Webmaster, and all its associated duties, for approximately 12 years
    • Being a contributor to the RPCN/Eastman Business Park Blogging Program
    • Being an integral part of the RPCN monthly Newsletter Team, including a monthly column titled, "Did You Know," which covered various topics associated with RPCN and/or our website.

    The RPCN Board knew that Steve was having some health problems for the last several months because Steve was open about it in one of the Operations meetings. He also mentioned that he was acquiring in-home help, due to his recent issues.

    Steve was hospitalized in the beginning of April 2024. We sent him flowers, kept in touch, and found out he was sent home. Unfortunately, Steve's health issues were more serious than we knew, and we received word that he had passed away on Thursday, April 11, 2024.

    Steve had many friends within our organization. Some knew him longer and were much closer friends, than others. We are saddened by his loss to us individually and as an organization.

    We have heard from Steve's daughter, Karen. Per Steve's wishes, there are no plans for a funeral or memorial service. She has also expressed a desire that no flowers be sent.

    We will individually express our condolences to Steve's daughter and family. In fact, I plan to include a copy of this article in my condolence card.

    —Sandra Glanton

    Discover Your Value to Clients by Testing Your Assumptions

    Building a consulting business is a trial-and-error process (with lots of error). It's like ramming your head against a wall until the wall surrenders and buys your service. As you start up, you:

    1. Define your service with educated assumptions about prospective/target clients who need you, and the value you'll deliver.
    2. Build a business plan (marketing strategy, financials, etc.).
    3. Market yourself, meet prospects, and ask them about their problems and needs.
    4. Pitch your service.
    5. Ask them to engage you (propose and negotiate). Hopefully, enough say "yes" before you give up and go out of business.

    Customer Discovery

    Testing your assumptions early in the startup process can increase your chances of success. One method is to interview target clients about their needs and the value they seek and then, adapt your service and marketing to match. Some call this Customer Discovery. Consultants may call it Client Discovery.

    Customer Discovery is not to be confused with written customer surveys. Discovery interviews are one-on-one live interchanges with you asking probing questions. In-person is best, but phone or online via Zoom can suffice. Observing body language yields better information.

    Discovery Interviewing Rules

    These might seem contrary to your urge to make a sale (because they are!).

    • Discovery Interviewing isn't a sales session. Don't do a sales pitch.
    • It's not a critique of your service by the interviewee.
    • It is information-gathering about a prospect's problems in your area of business.
    • The method and motto are, "Ask don't sell."


    Discovery interviews can be enlightening. You may find that your service and its value match your target clients' needs if you are lucky. You may discover that you need minor tweaks to your plans. You may need major changes in your assumptions about who needs your service and the value you offer. (Tip: During interviews, stay alert for surprises and new opportunities.)


    Use Discovery Interviews and other market information to refine your consulting approach. Adapt your service to match your target clients' needs, then go out and sell. Keep adapting that ramming wall surrenders and you're successful.

    Bob Lurz

    Enhancing Human CapitalTM (EHCTM)
    Deep Dive Updates

    Last Month's Lunch-n-Learn

    We held another RPCN EHC Lunch-n-Learn on Thursday, April 18th, at 11:30 AM on Zoom and discussed Leadership's Role in Enhancing Human Capital.  We discussed how several leadership experts (Stephen R. Covey, Stephen M.R. Covey, Major General Robert W. Mixon, Jr., Ken Blanchard, and Marcus Buckingham) view the leader's role in ensuring those that they lead are being the best they can be.  A couple of very interesting observations from the discussion were noticed.

    1. First, it was interesting how often similar themes were used by all these experts from servant leadership to empowering those around you while still maintaining responsibility for the results of the team's efforts.
    2. Second, it was pointed out by several participants how RPCN itself exhibits these traits as we look for the potential in our members and how to help them reach that potential.

    It was a very lively discussion and we hope to have you join us at next month's session.

    Upcoming Deep Dive (Note: Lunch-n-Learns will now be called Deep Dives)
    May 16th, 2024
    From Solopreneur to Entrepreneur - Scaling via Synergy
    Facilitated by Bob Manard

    Are you ready to make the move from being a solopreneur to being an entrepreneur who can build a team capable of scaling a business?

    We will discuss:

    • The benefits of solopreneurship and why it's so difficult to overcome the inertia that comes from being in control of everything in your business.
    • What synergy is and how it can be discovered and leveraged.
    • Strategies for assembling a team to maximize synergy and generate optimal outcomes for everyone involved.

    RPCN's Enhancing Human CapitalTM Deep Dives are held via Zoom on the third Thursday of every month, 11:30 am – 1 pm ET. Please join us for the next event FREE of charge. To get more information about EHCTM, please see , or email the EHC team.

  • 14-Apr-2024 3:10 PM | Anonymous

    RPCN’s Entrepreneurs Wall Of Fame Event, May 15, 2024!

    We are celebrating the long-awaited return of our annual awards event. To kick off this celebration, we ask each of you to become aware of our five core awards and their purpose by clicking on our Award Nomination Form. We believe as you read those descriptions, someone you know will come to mind. Give your client or business connection a chance to be recognized by completing the form as directed.

    Notice that four of these awards are focused on celebrating anyone who has added significantly to their company or our greater community. Only one award is for an RPCN member. 

    We want the business community to know about those who are working diligently to make our area a place for growth and opportunity. Please participate and help us recognize those that you appreciate by clicking on our Award Nomination Form.

    Become a Sponsor!

    As part of this celebration, we provide a way for you to support the event and the RPCN mission through advertising in the Event Program.

    • Promote your business to an enthusiastic audience of attendees who appreciate that there are people like you who want to ensure that people who bring something special to our area do not go unrecognized.
    • For more information and options, please reach out to Tom Fecteau at .

    Thank you for all that you do.

    Meditation – Should This be a New Habit for 2024?

    Meditation is an exercise to increase focus and reduce stress. Wikipedia describes it as, “Meditation is a practice of mindfulness, or focusing the mind on a particular object, thought, or activity to train attention and awareness and achieve a mentally clear and emotionally calm and stable state.”

    I was first made aware of meditation practices about 45 years ago by a crazy Ph.D. grad student who was tutoring me in chemistry. I was complaining about college life and all the distractions outside trying to remember chemical bonds and equations. He told me it was a matter of focus and that I should practice meditating to improve my concentration. He gave me a small pamphlet book on Transcendental Meditation and guided me on the initial exercises. I was very skeptical but gave it a try since he was straight A student in engineering with a double major while being a leader in several campus clubs. The bottom line is it did work to my surprise. It never became a consistent habit though.

    Reading various books on very successful people, the common thread is they all do some form of meditation on a daily basis. I practiced Tai Chi for a while which is a moving form of meditative exercises that reduce stress.

    The most basic meditative exercise focuses on nothing but breathing in and out. An additional exercise may include not letting your mind wander by focusing on a single object or image held in your mind.

    Meditation is practicing concentration and relaxing at the same time. It may take practice to perform this over a prolonged period of time, so be patient with yourself.

    There are many forms of meditation exercises and information on how and why it works. Find the right one for you and start practicing.

    The benefits to meditation are:

    • Increased focus and concentration
    • An increase in creativity
    • An increase in learning ability and  the power of observation and awareness
    • An increase  in your ability to recall information
    • An increase in your happiness

    Subsequently, meditation may reduce depression, stress, and anxiety, and improve your overall state of health. The benefits definitely outweigh the work involved in developing the practice of meditation. Give it a try!

    Mark Fling, RPSN President

    Networking Pest or Best? Which are you?

    Have you ever met a “networking pest” who ranted on and on about what they’re selling? Did they tell you how great they were while handing you a brochure and business card? I’ll bet you couldn’t get away fast enough and proceeded to dump it all in the trash.

    A pest uses the “It’s all about ME” networking style, but that’s not for you. To be a “Networking Best,” try this approach.

    Six Steps to Non-Pest Networking

    1. Adopt the mindset: “It’s all about THEM,” not about you.
    2. Ask, don’t sell. Discover their situation and their needs without talking about your business.
    3. Think how you might help them, aside from your business.
    4. Start helping them. Give referrals, advice, and so on.
    5. When they ask about what you do (ideally after completing steps 1- 4), tell them about the value of your business. If it fits, connect your value to their needs. Conclude your conversation with “Here’s my card,” either in hardcopy or in a text. Tell them, “Let’s talk more if you have questions or want to further discuss your needs. Let’s connect on LinkedIn.”
    6. Follow up promptly (e.g., a formal LinkedIn invitation to connect, a phone call, a text, or an e-mail). Always remind them where you met.   

    Adapt these networking steps to in-person and online meetings. Make your goal to build relationships, not to “sell.” Become a “Networking Best” and you won’t be a “pest.”

    Bob Lurz

    Member News

    Business Coach and Author Takes Local Sales Group to the National Level
    Sales Club USA Aims to Help Sales Leaders Become More Competitive

    Denise Horan, a Capital Region New York-based sales consultant and coach, expands her local sales club to a national audience, calling it Sales Club USA. After fully being launched in late 2023, the national sales community includes events like conferences, interactive workshops, and presentations. Group members enjoy access to articles, videos, interactive content, and live events to improve their business skills.

    The decision to expand her group nationally came shortly after publishing her book in 2021 titled, “Stories from the Sales Field: Navigating a Sales Career in a Post-Pandemic World.” The book is a culmination of Horan’s 30 years of experience training sales professionals.

    Launching the book and its success was the proof she needed to expand her business activities and reach more professionals. Over the years, she has helped companies grow their sales teams and increase revenues. Horan’s local sales group was a vehicle for helping others further their careers and businesses.

    “I am personally celebrating my 25th year in business. After some self-reflection, I am making some big changes this year. I focus on personal sales and business development skills for entrepreneurs, lawyers, wealth advisors, and sales professionals. I launched this sales platform – a community where sales and business development people can come to collaborate, gather resources for self-development, join a club, and attend a workshop. There will be great speakers and events each month. The online aspect allows me to expand nationwide and use all the new tools to attract attention and help those looking to build their businesses,” said Denise Horan, founder of Sales Club USA.

    Enhancing Human CapitalTM (EHCTM)
    Lunch-n-Learn Updates

    Last Month's Lunch-n-Learn

    The EHCTM Team held a good discussion on March 21, 2024, regarding Enhancing One’s Human Capital. Human capital is described as the collection of skills, knowledge, well-being, experience, and education that a person possesses. Participants were asked to compare their human capital to an investment account which grows with the accumulation of new skills, experience gained from education and training experiences, and various work-related positions that force us to add new skills.  We learned that employees who had many roles in their work lifetime generally improved their earning capacity by 40% as opposed to 30% for those with only one or two roles. Much discussion was centered around acquiring interpersonal and leadership skills in addition to education and formal training.

    Upcoming Lunch-n-Learn:
    April 18th, 2024
    Leadership’s Role in Enhancing Human Capital
    Facilitated by Dave Bassett

    April’s topic is Leadership's Role in Enhancing Human Capital. Some people say that you should enhance the human capital of those around you and those you lead.  It sounds like a great goal but how does a leader actually accomplish it?  There have literally been hundreds, if not thousands, of books on just that subject although it's rarely stated that way.  Please join us on April 18th as we take a deep dive into some of the key concepts of leadership experts like the Coveys and General Robert W. Mixon, Jr.

    RPCN’s Enhancing Human CapitalTM Lunch-n-Learns are held via Zoom on the third Thursday of every month, 11:30 am – 1:00 pm ET. Please join us for the next event FREE of charge. To get more information about EHC,TM please see , or email the EHC team.

  • 22-Mar-2024 1:37 PM | Steve Royal

    To view the March 2024m Newsletter, CLICK HERE.

  • 10-Feb-2024 2:25 PM | Steve Royal

    To view the February 2024 RPCN Newsletter, CLICK HERE.

  • 06-Dec-2023 5:18 PM | Steve Royal

    To view the December 2023 Newsletter, CLICK HERE.

  • 05-Nov-2023 2:02 PM | Steve Royal

    To view the November Newsletter, CLICK HERE.

  • 13-Oct-2023 2:19 PM | Steve Royal

    To view the October 2023 Newsletter, CLICK HERE.

  • 13-Oct-2023 2:15 PM | Steve Royal

    To view the September 2023 Newsletter, CLICK HERE.

  • 03-Aug-2023 11:27 AM | Steve Royal

    To view the August 2023 Newsletter, CLICK HERE.

  • 05-Jul-2023 3:13 PM | Steve Royal

    To view the July 2023 Newsletter, CLICK HERE.

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