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Talent Dynamics RSS Feed Blog Archive: March 2014

Why I booked Hollie Delaney…

I am super excited to announce that Hollie Delaney, HR manager, or actually her new title “Head of People Happiness” at Zappos, will be speaking at this year’s Global Trust Conference.

“Keeping employees at takes a little weirdness and willingness to make work fun”

Hollie Delaney is responsible for ‘people happiness’ at one of the largest online shoe companies in the world. That means the happiness of all its staff and of course their loyal customers is on Hollie’s shoulders, and boy does she carry it well.

This particular role didn’t come all that naturally to Hollie and required her to completely adapt her way of thinking. You see although Hollie had been in HR for many years for some highly successful companies, things at Zappos were completely different. There was a different feel to the place, it wasn’t the kind of corporate environment she had cut her teeth in. People jumping up on tables in the middle of a meeting and dancing are not things you usually hear of in the corporate world, but at Zappos this is almost the norm!

Having such an important role at this intense, high-energy company with their unique brand of HR, I think you’ll agree that Hollie has some amazing skills from which we can all learn a great deal.

In order to ensure the happiness of its staff, Zappos really does go the extra mile. In fact, when moving to their new headquarters in downtown Las Vegas, which bought Zappos closer to the famous Strip than their previous location, CEO Tony Hsieh spent $350 million to develop the entire neighbourhood so his employees would have access to great places to live and socialise too. This truly is a company that values its workforce just as much as its delighted customer base.

In keeping with its fun attitude and their proximity to the Las Vegas strip, Zappos have named all of their conference rooms after some of the famous casinos found close by. Although, I’m pretty sure there’s no gambling in these rooms as this is one switched-on company which won’t leave anything to luck.

y your tickets NOW!

One of the many reasons I was so desperate to do whatever it took to get Hollie to speak at this year’s Global Trust Conference was a short interview I once came across. This interview just showed me that everything Hollie has done in her career at to date aligns with the core message and principles we strive to deliver at the conference; building trust, relationships and connections within your business and with your customer-base, and that sometimes getting away from the ‘norm’ has truly astounding results.

So, when HR Magazine talked to Hollie Delaney about her career and how Zappos delivers happiness to its customers and its 3,000 employees, I was truly blown-away and thought you’d love to hear what this multi-billion dollar company does to build trust and relationships.


Hollie DelaneyQ: Before Zappos, you worked in HR at a casino. What was that like?

 A: “It was big and impersonal, with thousands of employees and so many rules between unions and non-unions. There was a rule for everything—even that I had to wear pantyhose if I worked in HR. It made it difficult to be yourself. At the time, I thought HR was not for me.”


 Q: Describe your Zappos job interview.

 A: “During the phone interview, I described myself as “fun but a little weird.” The interviewer said “Wow, that’s one of our core values.” I met everyone in HR and interviewed with 10 managers, including Tony. He was sitting in a cubicle alongside other employees; I didn’t know he was the CEO at first. I started crying while telling him about my “miracle baby” and thought I’d blown the job interview.”

Q: During onboarding, Zappos offers new hires $3,000 to leave if they don’t think they and the company are a good fit. Were you tempted?

A: “It was $1,000 when I started, but no. Everybody here was so happy. They were so invested in this company. You could see it, and you could feel it. I was floored. I was skeptical, but I knew there had to be something special here for people to behave that way.”

Q: How can you tell if a candidate is a good fit?

A: “When people tour our company, they’re kind of shellshocked. Some cannot get over the fact that people aren’t in offices and it’s so loud. Or, they want to work 9 to 5 and call it a day. Our environment is not the ideal place to meet those types of expectations. A state of consistent change, the open environment and team aspect do not work for everyone.”

“We move around a lot; you get to build relationships with people you haven’t met before. You can be in senior management in four to seven years. In our call center, employees bid for different shifts every six months. You can wear pajamas or bunny ears to a meeting and be taken seriously—actually, they’re more responsive to you.”

“The recruiting team interviews candidates for culture fit and a willingness to change and to learn. They notice how applicants interact at lunch. Do they talk with others or just the person they think makes the hiring decision? Our shuttle drivers tell us what candidates say during the ride back to their hotels.”

Q: When did you know you had embraced the culture?”

 A: “It took me about a year to change from focusing on the 10 percent of employees who cause problems to the 90 percent who do not. I remember Tony wanted to let all employees give out one $50 monthly bonus to any employee they chose. My traditional HR response was “You’re insane.” I thought people would give it to their friends, but some didn’t even give it out at all: They were waiting for people to “wow” them the same way they were expected to wow customers.”

“I didn’t have any skepticism left by the time we started the Wishez Program in 2010. Employees’ wishes have ranged from asking for homemade frosted sugar cookies to wanting to jump off the Stratosphere Hotel. One worker’s wish for a car was granted when an employee bought a new car and gave him his old vehicle.”

 Q: I understand you wrestled with staying in HR at Zappos. What happened?

A: “I’d been here nearly two years. People did not like HR when I started. It had the stigma of being the Debbie Downer Department, the rules enforcer. No one wants to be a part of that.”

“HR was in a transitional period. We didn’t have a Zappos identity. I felt like an outsider looking in. Headhunters started calling me. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do, where I stood with the company. I realized when I was talking to the life coach on staff that I had a huge opportunity to do something awesome at this awesome company.”

“We started asking different managers what they needed from HR. An HR generalist started sitting in each department for eight months. Now, they include us in termination discussions. We are invited to teams’ happy hours. We work with them to be part of the good things they do and not just the “You’re getting written up” conversations. Zappos’ ZCON team, which moved to HR from merchandising in January and handles areas such as reception, shuttle services, travel and concierge services, is bringing a new face to HR. I’m having fun now.”

“I could never go back to a traditional HR job. Here, our job is to educate employees. I’m more of a teacher, not a policeman. Our job is to protect the culture. If HR says “no,” it doesn’t mean no. You have to know all the rules of HR but be able to throw them out. If it’s a rule, is it a good rule?”

I hope you enjoyed reading this interview as much as I did. It’s hearing things like this confirms that putting together the Global Trust Conference so entrepreneurs, business owners and corporations can hear how the biggest companies in the world go about building trusting relationships in their organisations, is absolutely what we must do. Zappos have shown what’s possible by creating the perfect working environment and customer experience.

If you would like to come along and hear Hollie speak at the Global Trust Conference then it would be great to have you there. You can learn more about the conference and get your tickets by clicking the link here.

Don’t forget, ticket prices will go up on 1st April so buy now to grab a bargain!

 Buy your tickets NOW!




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CTT International Conference “Building a Values Driven Society”

We are delighted to announce that Michelle Clarke will be speaking at the CTT International Conference in June 2014 hosted by Barrett Values Centre. 
Society is made up of many different and vital parts. Societal transformation happens one person at a time, and each and every person has the ability to foster change. We believe this journey starts by living one’s values. 
Barrett Values Centre
The aim of the conference is to bring together all sectors of society to forge and deepen new and powerful relationships. By focusing on personal, organisational, national and global transformation, leaders and change agents will share, learn and build community around taking the vision of building a values-driven society into action. You will walk away with tools, methods and, most importantly, the inspiration to implement change in your own life, your communities, your organisations, your world.

We will be hosting a pre-conference webinar on March 27.
Register now!  

We think this is a great way to introduce your network to us and get them excited about attending the conference.  

Here are the webinar details:

  • What do coaches and other caring professionals need to know so they can support the healthy psychological growth and development of the adults they are working with? 
  • How can doing so help unleash human potential and support 
    a values-driven society? 
Please join Richard Barrett from Barrett Values Centre and Michelle Clarke from Talent Dynamics for an inspiring and informative webinar about evolutionary coaching and the power of trust!  
You will have an opportunity to listen to the latest thinking in these areas, as well as ask questions of Richard and Michelle. 

Thursday, March 27 at 5pm (CET) 4pm (GMT) 12pm (EST) 9am (PST) 


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Nicci’s Call: Are You Challenging Enough?

By Nicola Bonfanti – Talent Dynamics for Sales

Last week I attended the global online conference “The Sales Acceleration Summit”. The first  keynote speaker was Matt Dixon, co-author of “The Challenger Sale” and almost every talk I attended after that made reference to the most effective type of salesperson – the Challenger.

So what is the Challenger sales person, why is it important if you are involved in selling at all and how can knowing your Talent Dynamics profile help you become more challenging?

Why does it matter?

According to the CEB research*, and this is what has been sending shock waves through sales departments globally since its publication in 2012, the typical relationship builder salesperson, i.e. Making sure the customer is happy, being of service, keeping relations sweet, (what most of the sales training of the last 10-15 years has been based on) was the LEAST effective sales person type, particularly in an economic downturn, and not only with complex sales but in almost every sales situation.

Instead the MOST effective type of sales person in every situation proved to be the Challenger type who understood the customer’s business, pushes the customer to think outside the box, doesn’t ask them what keeps them up at night but teaches them what should be keeping them up at night and is not afraid to build constructive tension with the client, to make them think.

What is a Challenger sales person?

A Challenger salesperson excels and outperforms other sales types in 3 key areas:

  1. Teaches for differentiation – is an expert in their field and brings a new perspective to the client and educates them in other ways of doing business.
  2. Tailors for resonance – understands what drives value with different customers and adapts their message accordingly  (which your understanding of your client’s Talent Dynamics profiles will help you do).
  3. Takes control – not afraid to take control of the conversation or discuss pricing and cost concerns with the customers on their own terms.

How can you be more challenging?

Before you try and take on these 3 areas it’s important to remember what your strengths as a sales person already are and how you can build on that to become more challenging. Which is your strongest energy in your profile?

Dynamo profiles
(Creator, Mechanic, Star) – you will be naturally good at teaching for differentiation, will have great ideas for improvements and changes. Your challenge will be to listen more to the client and understand their specific values and to tailor your proposal to their needs rather than your ideas.

Utilising your knowledge of Talent Dynamics profiles and applying that to your clients will help with listening.

Blaze profiles
(Supporter, Star, Deal Maker) – you will naturally be good at tailoring for resonance, adapting your ideas to the client’s specific expectations.  You may be fearful of taking control of the conversation and discuss finances, not wanting to “spoil” the relationship.

Having courage to talk finances for the good of the client and your ongoing relationship will help you overcome this.

Tempo profiles
(Trader, Deal Maker, Accumulator) – you will naturally be inclined to make sure the customer is well served, is happy and there are no tensions there.

In order to win and keep the client you need to explore with them new ways that your products and services can resolve not only their current issues but issues in the future.

Steel profiles
(Lord, Accumulator, Mechanic) – you will be comfortable about taking control of the sales meeting but may not have enough knowledge or ask enough questions to tailor the proposal in an original and stimulating way.

Use the data and research you have to demonstrate to your client how they could be using your products and services in different ways.

More information about how you can become a more challenging salesperson at

Nicci Bonfanti will be leading one of the Break- Out sessions at the Trust Conference on September 11th.

*CEB research in “The Challenger Sale “ (2012) by Matthew Dixon and Brent Adamson

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DT’s Tower: Smelling the Roses

According to the calendar Spring is here…

Depends where you are in the country I suppose but looking out my window at the time of writing it doesn’t look like Spring! 😀

Although the New Year is a time for new starts, Spring is the time for new beginnings with subtle changes happening all around us.  As a Lord I’m not the quickest at starting things or even doing things.  In fact with my slow, methodical certainty I have more in common with Winter than Spring!

Saying that though, with my recent thinking on the best way of getting things done I have been reflecting what I can change to improve how I do things.  I’ve looked at focusing on one thing at a time, I’ve looked at the importance of deadlines (and the danger of ASAP!) so I’m now looking at ‘Smelling the Roses’.

The Project Conveyer Belt

Efficiency is great isn’t it?  I like it.  The smooth operation as one project finishes another starts.

But is that really the best approach?  Is that ‘truly efficient’?

Despite all the processes and automation you can have in place the weight of past projects builds up.  No human being is a machine that can go on relentlessly, even a machine needs servicing, maintenance and eventual upgrading.  As I’ve reflected over the past year to try and learn from my mistakes I’ve realised… I haven’t stopped.

I haven’t ‘smelt the roses’!

We all know there is finite time and finite money.  There is also finite brain power.  Project information and concerns build up in your mind over time, affecting future projects.  Like a tea mug that has one cup of tea made after another without washing, the residue of worries, data, people and pressures connected to a project affect the amount of work that can be done in the future.

A Glass Half Full or Half Empty?

The effect of this is best shown by the ‘stress’ analogy of a glass of water that goes round social media every now and again.

The story goes:

A psychologist walked around a room while teaching stress management to an audience. As she raised a glass of water, everyone expected they’d be asked the “half empty or half full” question. Instead, with a smile on her face, she inquired: “How heavy is this glass of water?”

Answers called out ranged from 8 oz. to 20 oz.

She replied, “The absolute weight doesn’t matter. It depends on how long I hold it. If I hold it for a minute, it’s not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I’ll have an ache in my arm. If I hold it for a day, my arm will feel numb and paralyzed. In each case, the weight of the glass doesn’t change, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes.” She continued, “The stresses and worries in life are like that glass of water. Think about them for a while and nothing happens. Think about them a bit longer and they begin to hurt. And if you think about them all day long, you will feel paralyzed – incapable of doing anything.”

Remember to put the glass down

Planning to Smell the Roses

This has definitely been me over the past year or so.  I have moved from one thing to another and not ‘put the glass down’.  What I have been doing has been emptying the glass and refilling it as quickly as possible.

What I intend to do is make sure that I plan to have room either side of a project to ‘smell the roses’, enjoy the feeling of success, reward myself appropriately and reflect on what I’ve learned…

Before moving on.

On paper this might not be efficient but it will ensure that I can keep healthy, happy and focused.  That is efficient!  Smelling the Roses is my ‘new beginning’ for Spring!

How about you?  Do you smell the roses or put the glass down from time to time?  Have you any tips or tricks that you want to share?

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Dynamo Joe’s Story: Talent Dynamics for Young People

By Teejay Dowe – Talent Dynamics for Young People

When I profiled Joe he was 8 years old, a little younger than I would normally profile but bright, nearly 9 and eager to learn he was an ideal young man to work with.

Joe’s mum had been profiled through Talent  Dynamics and discovered that she was a Deal Maker it had given her so much insight that she was keen to discover more, especially more about her son who was mixed race and about to be moving schools.

She was concerned that he might be bullied, therefore wanting to find out how she could help him to fit in.

Creator Profile

Joe came out as a Creator profile, tons of Dynamo energy bursting to get out, a lively, high energy little boy, a pleasure to speak with.

His mum thought she knew him but after the debrief told me that she had learned so much more about him and was so proud of the answers that he gave to the questions I asked him.

She really felt that she understood him at a different level. She was so impressed that she was going to pick the next school he would go to by matching the way that they taught with the way that he naturally loves to learn. Dynamo energy loves to learn in a visual way.

2 weeks later I was at a business networking event and Joe’s mum was there. She came over to me all smiles and exited to share Joe’s progress with me. She said ‘TeeJay, I have to share this with you, Since Joe was profiled and I learned so much, homework now – piece of cake!’ Of course intrigued I said ‘Do tell!’


She said ‘Well Joe came home from school this week with  homework that he really did not want to do. He had to write out the instructions about how to make a cup of tea.’


She said ‘I was just about to say, oh, come on, let’s sit down and plan this out together…when I realised that my way of doing it not his! I almost sucked my words back in and instead said ‘Have you ever seen mummy make a cup of tea?’ He said ‘No’

She said’ Ok, go and get the ipad, then you can record mummy making a cup of tea. You can play it back and instead of writing a list of instructions you can pause it at each step and draw it out to give instructions’

He loved it! Homework was done quickly, he loved every minute of it and now homework will never be a challenge again! Mum simply knows how to engage him in his world


Teejay Dowe will be leading one of the Break- Out sessions at the Trust Conference on September 11th.

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Partnership Opportunity in Australia (3 People Only)

I wanted to share this blog, because I’ve got an opportunity I thought you might be interested in…

A Personal Invitation to add an extra $6000k to your business in 12months!

I’m currently looking for 3 new business partners in Australia/New Zealand, to work closely with me and my team.

If you’re one of them, I will help you add an extra $60k-$100k in sales to your coaching or training business in the next 12 months.

Specifically you will get:

  • Access to our automated lead generation system, which will give you a constant stream of prospects who are highly qualified to buy your coaching and training services
  • All the sales and marketing materials we’ve used to sell over 250 Flow Consultant trainings
  • A comprehensive 4 month Launch training programme to fast track your success
  • Personal one-to-one support from me, to help you sell as many training and coaching packages as possible
  • 200 Talent Dynamics profile tokens for you to sell to your clients (you get to keep all the money… these tokens sell for £50 each, which should generate £10,000 extra revenue for your business)
  • However, there are two small conditions if you’re interested in becoming my business partner…

1. You need to be prepared to work hard

If you’re going to work with me, you need to be committed to growing your coaching or training business in 2014. In order for this to work for both of us, you can’t be juggling a job or another unrelated business as you start this venture with me. You need to give it absolute focus, alongside your existing training business. In fact if you’re one of these people who likes to “dabble” in the latest marketing fad or “shiny object” – you might as well stop reading now – this partnership is not for you.

But if you can commit, I’d love to work with you and help you add $60k-$100k to your business in the next 12 months.

2. You must already have a reasonably successful coaching or training business

Let me be clear… I’m NOT looking to partner with someone who is just getting started, or has been struggling to get their business off the ground.

In order to partner with me, you need to have a good reputation in your niche marketplace and ideally you should already be doing minimum $75,000-$100,000 a year in revenue, with the intention of doubling that this year.

As you may know, over the last 4 years I’ve created one of the fastest growing training businesses based in the UK.

In fact, last year we trained over 150 new licensed partners in 18 countries worldwide, helping them to massively accelerate trust and flow in their organisations, delivering our unique training and coaching programmes.

And now I’m looking for 3 partners in Australia/New Zealand to join our team and help us train an even wider audience.

Here are just some of the results our existing partners have already achieved:

Teejay DoweTeejay Dowe: Since partnering with Talent Dynamics Teejay has started a completely new business: ‘Talent Dynamics for Young People’. Within 3 months she had a global reach, making a difference to young people all over the world. Within 6 months she’d generated £60k in revenue from the new venture and is now about to acquire another company that will add £40k to her gross profit.


Vicky JenningsVicky Jennings: Vicky runs a training organisation in Brisbane, Australia, and began her partnership with Talent Dynamics in July 2011. Almost immediately she ran a training session with a group of CEO’s which resulted in $40,000 worth of orders. Within 6 months she had doubled turnover in her business and has now increased her business by TEN TIMES in the last 2 1/2 years.


Neville PritchardNeville Pritchard: Within 6 months of beginning his partnership with Talent Dynamics Neville added £25k to his own organisation’s bottom line and over £510k of efficiency and revenue value to his clients.




Today we’re offering you the opportunity to work alongside our amazing team and benefit from the proven system we’ve created for building a thriving coaching and training business.

As you may have gathered, this is NOT like any other ‘business opportunity’ you may have seen in the past. You and I will be partners. I’m not saying you will become a multi-millionaire in the next 12 months by doing very little work. I can not and will not make any promises here. We’ll play our part (give you the systems and training to generate leads to sell your training programmes, etc) and YOU will also need to put in the hours as well.

What I’d like to do is invite you to come and spend a day with me while I’m visiting Sydney in the next few weeks, (where I’ll show you the “ins and outs” of how our business works, so you can see for yourself what it’s all about and decide if you’d like to become one of my 3 new business partners(all the details of this “Discovery Day” are at the bottom of this email).

Now, just to reiterate, if we decide to work together we will be PARTNERS, so not only will I be giving you all the training and resources you need, but I’ll also be working closely alongside you to ensure your business is a success and you generate an extra $60k-$100k this year.

I’ve personally invested tens of thousands of pounds over the last few years building my business. That includes testing new marketing ideas, hiring and training staff, learning the newest and most cutting edge training techniques, and finding out what works and what doesn’t.

I’ve invested a LOT of time and money in this business, and so clearly, my new partners will be expected to invest as well.

Now, the investment won’t be anywhere near the tens of thousands of pounds I’ve invested in the business, but it will still be significant. So, be prepared!

In return, if you follow my guidance, I expect you to generate at least anextra $60,000-$100,000 of highly profitable sales, in the next 12 months as a direct result of our partnership.

Meaning, you get paid… and I get paid. Simple! 🙂

But as I already mentioned, before you decide whether or not this opportunity to become my new business partner is right for you, I’d like to invite you to“discover” it with me first.

So, I’ve decided to host a “Discovery Day” for interested parties while I’m in Sydney at Vibe Hotel North, 88 Alfred Street, Milsons Point on March 15th

At the Discovery Day I’ll show you behind the scenes of the Talent Dynamics business. I’ll show you step-by-step how we’ve built a substantial client list, generated hundreds of thousands of pounds in sales and helped our partners have massive success in no time at all.

In the time we have together, I promise won’t hold back a single detail, because I want you to have all the facts.

Then we’ll have a quick lunch (on me!) and in the afternoon you’ll have the chance to ask as many questions as you like.

Finally, if you’d like to be considered for one of the three available partnerships, you and I will sit down together for a private 1-to-1 interview where we’ll decide if this opportunity is right for you.

We’ll start at 11am and I expect to wrap up around 3pm.

1. There are only 8 spaces available.

Due to the personal nature of the day, I can only allow 8 people to attend. So, please do NOT attend unless you’re at least very interested in this partnership opportunity.

Having said that, you MUST attend if you want to be considered as one of the three people I’m going to partner with.

I can’t be spending hours on the phone with each individual who’s interested. That’s why I’m running the discovery day… so I can take a few hours out of my calendar while I’m in Australia and explain everything to 8 people all at once!

So in order to be considered, you must attend. No exceptions.

2. It’s free to attend.

However, to ensure the 8 places at the Discovery Day aren’t wasted on time wasters (therefore denying serious candidates the opportunity) a fully refundable deposit of £500 is payable.

This is just to demonstrate your commitment. The way I see it, is if someone won’t pay the £500 deposit to attend the Discovery Day, there’s no way they’ll be prepared to invest in becoming my partner, nor take the partnership seriously enough for it to be a success.

When you attend the Discovery Day, there’s no obligation whatsoever. If you decide this opportunity isn’t right for you, your deposit will be refunded to you immediately.

If you’d like to reserve your place at the Discovery Day on March 15th, just click the link below to pay your fully refundable deposit of £500:

Click here to reserve your place on the Discovery Day > 

If you have any further questions before committing to attend the Discovery Day, please email me on 

Michelle ClarkeRemember, there are only 8 spaces available at the Discovery Day. Once they have been snapped up, this opportunity will disappear! 

So if you’re at all interested, I urge you to read this email again and reserve your space on the Discovery Day today.

If you come along and the opportunity isn’t for you… no problem! I’ll happily refund your £500 deposit immediately. You really have nothing to lose.

Best regards,

Michelle Clarke

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