What can I say?  Neen James rocks!

The petite fireball lives up to her Attention Pays message, commanding a room of over 100 CEO’s and their teams last Friday at our 13th Annual Growth Strategies Breakfast at the Union League of Philadelphia. I loved welcoming her back for an “encore” performance. She was the Key Note Speaker at our first Breakfast, 13 years ago and what a treat to have her again!

Sharing her story as well as her enthusiasm for life and all that it offers, the author of “Attention Pays” captivated her audience, sharing not just with tips and techniques to be a better communicator but also to be a better human being. Everyone was inspired and energized.

As one participant shared, “Neen was wonderful! What an amazing way to end the Quarter and get pumped up for the rest of the year!”

If you missed seeing her, be sure to check out her website to see where she’ll be next.  In the meantime, here’s my short list of her quotable quotes, tips and sage words of wisdom to help keep you focused and paying attention to what really matters in life:

Be intentional in what you do and say…

  • You can’t manage time, but you can manage attention.
  • We’ve lost the art of holding someone’s gaze. Look in their eyes.
  • Maybe you need to say No more than Yes to the things that really matter. I like the word No. No is a complete sentence.

Systemize to create freedom…

  • The key to personal productivity is 15 minutes. Every day on a post it write, “Today I will…” and write three things down. Use the list as your decision “filtering” system throughout the day.
  • Think of your day, your week and your month as a road trip. When you pack the car, put in the largest pieces of luggage first!

Leverage email to enhance productivity…

  • You have 10 words in the digital world to get your audience’s attention.
  • Use subject lines to communicate your intention.
  • If you have to scroll down in an email, it’s too long.
  • Embrace the ‘Out of Office’ (OOO) feature on email. Make people want to see your latest OOO message to find out what fun you are up to!

Get someone’s attention with thoughtfulness…

  • Use names. A person’s name is the sweetest sound.
  • Personal attention is about thoughtfulness. Systematize thoughtfulness. Write a thank you note every night, use “lumpy mail”, make a list of your top 20 advocates and reach out in some way every 30 days to let them know that they are important to you.
  • Substitute “Life is very full right now” for “I’m crazy busy”. It sends a more positive message.
  • Share your decision-making process to help your team know the why behind what you want them to achieve.

And if you’d like to check out the results from our 13th Annual Growth Strategies Survey of CEO’s in the Greater Philadelphia area, you can do that here.