The bridge between who you are and who you want to be can sometimes seem impossible to cross. No one knows better just how rickety this bridge can be than a shy salesman. Peter Franconi, described as an introvert at the time of his first sales job, was forced to cross that bridge rather quickly when he was hired as the first sales person in a 2-person startup. After swaying a little, perhaps tripping over few cracks in the wood, Franconi was able to cross that bridge with his head held high and Fortune 500 companies in his pockets. Now working as the Regional Director of General Assembly in Atlanta, Franconi was able to share with us some of his secrets of success.
General Assembly, Regional Director- Atlanta
Essential Tech Tools:
Besides the obvious, like my Mac, iPhone, and Google Apps (Mail, Calendar, Drive):
- GQueues -a slick task management tool that makes it easy to tackle your to-do list.
- Boomerang – a Google email plugin to schedule email sends and reminders.
How do you stay connected:
I prefer meeting people face to face, but otherwise I can easily keep tabs via Instagram, Linkedin, Twitter, and Facebook. Atlanta tech loves Twitter, so you have to be on it and follow all of the movers and shakers.
How do you stay on top of emerging trends:
Find quality curators, and then explore and absorb as much as you can. I subscribe to the Hacker News newsletter, which shares the most interesting and trending topics from the site. I see articles there and then watch the coverage go mainstream weeks or months later. Also, Quora fuels a number of thought-provoking conversations.
Habits that fuel success:
- The inbox is your enemy. Don’t let other people dictate your day. Reading and responding to emails doesn’t equate to productivity. Limit your time in the inbox to two or three one-hour sessions each day.
- Read emails once. Respond to it, pass it off as a to-do for someone else, or schedule time on your calendar to handle anything that will take longer than 10 minutes.
- Set goals. Identify your role’s most important goal and constantly ask yourself if what you’re currently doing is working towards that goal. If not, stop what you’re doing.
Habits that hinder success:
Distractions. I’ve become accustomed to technology and a society that caters and feeds to the short attention span. I’ve had to force myself to set aside distractions and focus all my energy on the topic at hand.
Interest in Startups:
- The opportunity to contribute and make a tangible impact on a business.
- The independence to problem solve and accomplish what needs to be done.
- No two days are ever the same.