My word for 2021: Prioritize

At the end of every year, as I start to think about my New Year’s goals, I start by choosing one word. My word for the New Year. I love this tradition, it forces me to think big picture, before I get in the weeds of my resolutions list. 

This year, my word is prioritize




  1. designate or treat (something) as more important than other things.

“prioritize your credit card debt”

  1. determine the order for dealing with (a series of items or tasks) according to their relative importance.

“age affects the way people prioritize their goals”

I chose this word in part as a reaction to 2020 – a year which for me was mostly reactive rather than proactive. To me, prioritizing involves an element of control, which I love. No matter what is going to happen this year, I am not going to let my priorities get derailed. Of course, they may shift, but that will be because I decide to shift them.  

I also chose this word because I tend to try to do everything, please everyone. And I can’t, or at least not well. So I am committing to the discipline of prioritizing, which involves not doing things or stopping doing certain things, which means sometimes saying “no.” With prioritizing also comes “deprioritizing.” 

I am still working on what exactly I am going to prioritize… here is a start: 

Getting better at Greek (I did not do a single Duolingo class in 2020….)

Feeling lighter and fresher (as I did last January, I am in the midst a 21 day cleanse and I am not giving up, no matter the political events… ) 

Reading more (2020 was hard on my reading… more on this in next week’s blog) 

Focusing my work time on profitable projects and partners 


And every day, when I wake up, I now start my day by thinking about my #1 top priority for that day. Only once I have decided what that is do I allow myself to look at my very long to-do list…  

Do you have a word for 2021? If so, please do share!

On Sales

“I have never worked a day in my life without selling. If I believe in something, I sell it, and I sell it hard.” Estée Lauder. 

Belief in my product is (also) at the core of why, and how, I sell. And belief, supplemented with sales methodologies and frameworks, can only yield even better results. 

I attended sales training last week, and here are the three most important things I learned, and re-learned. 

1. When walking into a potential account “cold.” 

Three easy steps to make an in-person cold call easier:

  • Who: Introduce yourself; name and company name. 
  • Why: Address the reason for your visit; incorporate a compliment whenever possible. For example: “I saw your Instagram account and love it and wanted to see more in real life” or “Congratulations on the great press mention in last week’s issue of XXX, the article made me want to stop by.”  
  • What’s in it for me: Address the benefit associated with your visit, for example, free products to try. 

2. When walking into an existing account for a followup visit. 

Here, the relationship is established, and it can sometimes get easy to treat a followup sales visit as a social call. To help make sure you are making an impact, and to ensure good note-taking and follow-up post-visit, use this framework: 

  • Situation: Who, where, when.  
  • Pain: What pain points were discovered? How can you further improve the relationship? 
  • Impact: What are the followup actions to ensure a positive impact from the visit? 

3. When negotiating a sale. 

First, replace the word “negotiate” with the word “trade”, which is both less aggressive and more positive. 

Second, here are the trading steps to follow: 

  • Get all negation items out (figure out the list of “asks”). 
  • Repeat what you heard (active listening). 
  • Prioritize the issues (so you know which “asks” to focus on). 
  • Qualify the decision-maker (don’t waste their time or yours talking to the wrong person). 
  • Make the office, be clear and concise.
  • Listen and repeat their counter-offer. 
  • Confirm the “expiration date” of your offer. 
  • Agree to consequences. 
  • Confirm all with email and contract.