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Newsletter in Letter Format

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Newsletters come in many forms.  This one—a real letter—is one of my favorite formats. I like it better than a traditional glossy piece, because it seems more personal, more one-on-one. It can also be created and sent immediately, where a printed letter might take weeks. Electronic letters are good, but may be perceived as mass mailings. I often use a P.S. at the end, because the P.S. tends to be read first. Starting the year with a BANG refers to our 20 years in business.

January 11, 20—

Maynard  Shirey
Vice President of Human Resources
7334 Delaware Place
Denver, CO 80112

Dear Maynard,

We started 20— with a BANG!

The FOX News Channel interviewed me on Christmas Eve for a story on preventing workplace violence. "The Rocky Mountain News" named our Website (www.careerlab.com) one of "100 Great Colorado Web Sites," and also featured us in an article on Executive Coaching (Enclosed).

In addition, after a week-long intensive training, Frank Delaney and Dr. Saundra Friedland were certified to administer The Birkman Method, the most advanced career development tool on the market.

The Birkman Method has been continually improved for 40 years. More than 1.5 million people in 5,000 brand-name organizations have taken the profile, which is used to:

  • Improve Recruiting and Hiring  
  • Reduce Turnover—Retain Key Employees  
  • Expand Sales  
  • Increase Management Effectiveness  
  • Reduce or Resolve Conflict  
  • Increase Productivity  
  • Guide Executive Coaching  
  • Facilitate Outplacement
In other words, this tool is used to improve individual careers and organizational behavior in every possible way. As you can imagine, I've taken dozens of career tests and profiles in my time, and The Birkman Method is far-and-away the best. Once in a while we hit a home run—and this one is it!

The report provides extensive, highly accurate portraits of preferred work habits and strengths, as well as behavioral styles and interests.  A typical report—which may run 45 pages—also

January 11, 20—

Page Two

indicates individual potential for specific professional occupations and working environments, the support needed from other individuals, and the stress behaviors likely if these needs are not met. In addition, it provides a comprehensive profile of probable success at various levels of management, and of the ability to interact as a team member.

The Birkman Method recognizes that two individuals who act very much alike may be motivated by completely different behaviors, rewards, and environments. In fact, the way an individual behaves often gives no clue as to how they need to be treated.

Supported by a large database of occupational and behavioral information, The Birkman Method helps individuals understand, not underestimate their strengths, and remove pre-conceived barriers that limit their personal achievement and career development within an organization. Because it gives managers specific, concrete techniques—not vague generalities—it's a catalyst for positive organizational change.

The profile consists of a three-part questionnaire. The first two parts have 125 true-false items each, measuring: 1) perceptions about how most people feel, think and behave, and 2) patterns of thoughts, feelings, and actions. The third section consists of a 48-item survey on occupational interests. The questionnaire can be administered in about an hour, by pencil and paper or by computer.

I know you're familiar with other assessment instruments: The Myers Briggs, The Campbell Interest & Skills Test, the PF-16, and others. These other instruments may emulate The Birkman Method in select areas, but no other competitor even pretends to offer its breadth and scope. Add to this the fact that this methodology was designed from the beginning for use in the business-industrial world, and the choice is clear—The Birkman Method is far-and-away the best. I hope you'll give us a chance to show you why.

Have a great TODAY!

Bill Frank's signature

William S. Frank

P.S.—Travelers from more than 100 countries have visited our Website, www.careerlab.com. With 400,000 hits per week, we're one of the Web's 100 most popular jobs and careers sites (100hot.com/jobs/). "USA TODAY" gave us their "HOT SITE" award. "The Rocky Mountain News" names CareerLab one of 100 Great Colorado Websites, "Yahoo! Internet Life" calls us "an incredibly useful site," and "Bottom Line: Personal" lists our cover letter collection as "the #1 most useful career site." In addition, we consistently rank as one of the top employment resources on "America Online."

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William S. Frank, M.A.,
25 Reasons I love consulting.
by William S. Frank
  1. Brand. You are your own brand, and you can define it any way you want. For many years, I provided outplacement to the ex-employees of Schlumberger, the world's largest oilfield service corporation. When departing employees left the company, they didn't request outplacement in their severance package. They said, "I want Bill Frank."
  2. Demand. The world will always be full of terrible problems that need solving.
  3. White Hat. I can be a helper and get paid for it.
  4. Pay. I can be paid to do things I'd gladly do for nothing.
  5. Variety. Every day is different.
  6. Happiness. At this stage of my career, I only work for people I respect and care about. If a client micromanages me or is otherwise no fun, I complete the assignment and replace them.
  7. Talent. I'm using 110% of my talents and stretching myself to the max.
  8. Change. I can change my focus any day I want. If you're a McDonald's franchisee, you don't say, "Hey, I've got this great idea for a meatball sandwich—let's try it out today." In consulting you can adjust your focus hour-by-hour, as long as your clients still understand and appreciate what you do.
  9. Income. No one else would pay me as much as I pay myself.
  10. FUN. I can't think of anything I'd rather be doing.
  11. Retirement. I can write and consult as long as I am physically and mentally capable. Peter Drucker worked into his 90s, and when asked which book was his best, he said: "My next one."
  12. Job Security. Although clients come and go, no one can come into my office and say, "Pack up your stuff . . . You don't work here anymore." In 29 years, I've only had one employer: ME.
  13. Travel. I don't have to travel unless I decide to. I travel if it's both FUN and profitable—or at least FUN.
  14. Commute. I live five minutes from my office, a corner office in an upscale six-story tower. In winter, I leave a heated garage at home and drive to an underground heated garage at work. There's seldom time to hear even one song on the radio.
  15. Vacation. Consulting is more fun than vacation (except on Wailea Beach in Maui).
  16. Friends. I have developed hundreds of close acquaintances and several lifetime friends.
  17. Time. I can work as much or as little as I like: four-hour days or 18-hour days. (Of course, my income will reflect that.)
  18. Employees. I can work with employees, subcontractors, partners, or alone—I've done it all.
  19. Passive Income. I've developed several products that provide "mailbox money." I earn while I'm sleeping.
  20. Ethics. I've never had to violate my values or personal code of ethics. I've never had to lie, purposely deceive or harm others, or promise things I can't deliver. I go to bed with a clear conscience. That doesn't mean there's never any conflict. But the conflict is conducted according to generally accepted business practices.
  21. Virtual. My career is fairly portable. With the Internet, e-mail, cell phone, and FedEx, I can work nationally, even internationally from my office—or anywhere in the world.
  22. Purpose. I make a difference in peoples' lives every day. I see it in their faces, hear it in their voices, and read it in their thank-yous.
  23. Experience. Every painful or joyful life experience makes me a better consultant. So does every person I meet or book I read. Grey hair can be good in consulting.
  24. Structure. I have to work very hard, and the clients expect superb results—but I get to structure my days, weeks, months, and years.
  25. Boss. Most of the time, I love my boss.
As I was posting these letters online, I realized I want to communicate my love for consulting. It's just a great business. The single letters, taken together, may create a picture of enjoyment, but in a burst of creativity I listed some of the reasons consulting is such a good fit for me—and perhaps for you, too. They are not prioritized; this is just how they came out.