GottaGettaCoach!, Incorporated welcomes you to another edition of Not Just Talk!

published by GGCI Publishing
Volume 3 - Number 1

Not Just Talk!
The newsletter that 'walks the talk' about getting more from your
Untapped Potential - at work and in life.

1qtr2005 Issue - What's Inside?

Feature Article
Book Bit: A Quick-Hit-Overview of a Recent Read
Great Things I Didn't Say!
What's News at GottaGettaCoach!
GottaGettaBlog! Weblog Highlights
3-Click Challenge

Yes, No, Counteroffer

A lot of people end up doing more than they really want simply because they don't know how to navigate through a potentially difficult conversation about it. As a result, they not only end up with more work to do, but they also tend to feel bad for not sticking up for themselves and angry at those around them. There's one key thing to remember, though. For any request that's made, you always have three possible responses: to say 'yes', to say 'no', or to make a counteroffer.

Saying 'yes' - For many, this really is the only response they feel comfortable giving. And while it solves problems in the short-term (read: avoids confrontation), it often creates significant stress and strain later because there's that much more to do. That's not to say that 'yes' isn't sometimes a good answer. Many times you want to help AND are able to help. And helping others can be a great source of personal and professional satisfaction. But when a 'yes' starts creating more than you're ready for, it's important to know that you have other options.

Saying 'no' - This response is often thought of as the option of last-resort. And rightfully so because it often leads to an argument of sorts. But there are times when a clear and firm 'no' is exactly what's needed: when someone asks you to betray a friendship, when someone asks you to do something unethical or illegal, as examples. What's important is that you get real clear about what lines you're just not willing to cross.

Making a counteroffer - When saying 'yes' to someone else means saying 'no' to yourself, though, the counteroffer is clearly the option of choice. The process is simple, you simply begin by saying something to the effect of, "Well, I can't do [that], but I can do [this]" and then ask how would that be as an alternative. Examples:

  • I can't finish that report by Friday at 5pm, but I can have it on your desk by Monday at 9am. Would that be an acceptable alternative?

  • I can't meet with you on Thursday, but I do have some time on Wednesday afternoon. Would that be an acceptable alternative?

  • I can't finalize the details by noon, but I can let you know by then what remains to be done. Would that be an acceptable alternative?

  • I can't deliver just 9 items without special approval, but I can expedite a full case of 12. Would that be an acceptable alternative?

  • I can't complete all 3 of your requests by day's end, but I can do the one that's most important to you and finish up the others tomorrow. Would that be an acceptable alternative?

The thinking behind a counteroffer is that there's usually something you can propose that will satisfy the person making the request (and be much, much easier for you to provide), even though it's not exactly the same as what was originally requested. Notice that a counteroffer doesn't always mean 'less' or 'later'. Sometimes it really may be easier for you to meet a day earlier or provide even more than what was asked for. If that's so, make it part of your counteroffer and see how it flies. Maybe it won't, but maybe it will.

Notice, too, that a counteroffer is not necessarily a compromise. A compromise is about concessions, that is, giving up or giving in on what's really needed. A counteroffer, though, is a way of determining how else you might help a person get what he or she really DOES need with minimal stress and strain on your part. That you save all sorts of time, energy, and aggravation is just a pleasing byproduct.

So the next time you're asked to do something you really can't do without great inconvenience, don't just give in by saying 'yes' or get belligerent by saying 'no' - make a counteroffer instead. Tell the person what it is you CAN do for them and ask how that'd work for them instead? Chances are good they'll say 'yes' and, even if they don't, they'll probably be willing to accept another reasonable alternative.

Book Bit: A Quick-Hit-Overview of a Recent Read

New for 2005, this section will focus on providing you a 'quick-hit-overview ' of an interesting book I've read. I'll share with you some its key insights, information, and points-to-ponder. And, if you'd like to order a copy, there's a link to do that, too.

Title: Little Red Book of Selling: 12.5 Principles of Sales Greatness
Author: Jeffrey Gitomer
Link to Purchase: Buy the book

A real personality, Jeffrey Gitomer pulls no punches when it comes to helping people get real, sell better, and sell more. And, what's more, his recommendations are surprisingly applicable to almost everyone, regardless of what they do for a living. As example, very early on in the book, he asks: What does it take to become a sales success? His "18.5" answers, which he insists are not so much Secrets of Success, are "fundamental steps that successful salespeople and entrepreneurs have been executing for centuries."

1.   Believe you can.
2.   Create the environment.
3.   Have the right associations.
4.   Expose yourself to what's new.
5.   Plan for the day.
6.   Become valuable.
7.   Have the answers your prospects and customers need.
8.   Recognize opportunity.
9.   Take advantage of opportunity.
10.   Take responsibility.
11.   Take action.
12.   Make mistakes.
13.   Be willing to risk.
14.   Keep your eyes on the prize.
15.   Balance yourself.
16.   Invest, don't spend.
17.   Stick at it until you win.
18.   Develop and maintain a positive attitude.
18.5.   Ignore idiots and zealots.

Gitomer goes on to write about what he calls the positive and negative "senses of selling." There are 6 positive senses:

1.   The sense of confidence.
2.   The sense of positive anticipation.
3.   The sense of determination.
4.   The sense of achievement.
5.   The sense of winning.
6.   The sense of success.

And then he explores the 8.5 negative senses - the ones that your subconscious mind often presents and projects when selling:

1.   The sense of fear.
2.   The sense of nervousness.
3.   The sense of rejection.
4.   The sense of procrastination or reluctance.
5.   The sense of justification/rationale/
6.   The sense of self-doubt.
7.   The sense of uncertainty.
8.   The sense of doom.
8.5   The sense of "I'm unlucky."

Make no mistake, this book is definitely focused on selling. But there's still an awful lot of practical and between-the-eyes logic and advice that this guru has to offer about how to be more successful than maybe you are right now.

If you've read this book and would like to share your thoughts on it - or have a book recommendation that you'd like to make - send an email to

Great Things I Didn't Say!

  • "Keep away from people who belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great, make you feel that you too can become great." - Mark Twain

  • "There is real magic in enthusiasm. It spells the difference between mediocrity and accomplishment." - Norman Vincent Peale

  • "You do not merely want to be considered just the best of the best. You want to be considered the only one who does what you do." - Jerry Garcia

  • "Failure does not count. If you accept this, you'll be successful. What causes most people to fail is that after one failure, they'll stop trying." - Frank Burford

  • "The way to be nothing is to do nothing." - Nathaniel Howe

  • "Some books are to be tasted; others swallowed; and some to be chewed and digested." - Francis Bacon

What's News at GottaGettaCoach!?

  • The Chicago Coach Federation recognized Barry Zweibel for his contributions to the chapter and the coaching community in 2004.

  • Annetta Corporation retained the services of GottaGettaCoach!, Inc.

  • GottaGettaBlog! was updated to enable emailing me directly from that site.

  • SMC has extended its ongoing coaching relationship with GottaGettaCoach!, Inc.

  • Barry Zweibel got to coach quite a number of incredibly smart, capable, awesome people!

GottaGettaBlog! Weblog Highlights

I've been using GottaGettaBlog! as a vehicle to capture news, notes, and musings about coaching, mentoring, and getting more from YOUR Untapped Potential - along with whatever other stuff I happen to find amusing and/or thought-provoking - since June of 2003. Highlighted postings from last quarter include:

If you don't already receive email notifications when new postings are made, be sure to signup for this no-charge monitoring service. Simply submit your email address in the blue box that says, "Monitor page for changes" at the top-right corner of the blog page.

3-Click Challenge

Congratulations to Christiane Holbrook. She's won the 3-Click Challenge and has earned one month of coaching at no charge to her!


This edition of Not Just Talk! was written and created by Barry Zweibel, professional certified life coach, certified executive coach, and president of GottaGettaCoach!, Incorporated. GottaGettaCoach! specializes in helping executives - and managers aspiring to be executives - think more strategically and creatively about what's most important to them, and provides life coaching and career coaching services to those looking to make good things happen sooner in their lives.

For information on how GottaGettaCoach! can help you - or your organization - please contact Barry directly at 847-291-9735,, or via To cancel your subscription, send a blank email to with the word CANCEL, in the subject field.

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