1: The trial is beginning.  The defense attorney rises to give their opening statement.  

They begin by mentioning everything their client is accused of.  They list out all the weaknesses of their case.


The technique is called “taking the sting out,” Chris Voss writes in Never Split the Difference: Negotiating As If Your Life Depended On It.

And it applies to more than just the court of law.

To prepare … continue reading

1: The experienced fundraiser was perplexed.  

A fundraising executive with the Girl Scouts, she had developed a successful system to connect with donors.  “She’d invite a potential donor to her office, serve a few Girl Scouts cookies, walk her through an album of heartwarming snapshots and handwritten letters from projects that matched the [donor’s] profile, and then collect a check when the donor’s eyes lit up,” Chris Voss writes in … continue reading

What is the FBI’s “most potent” negotiating tool?  

1: Getting better at getting better is what RiseWithDrew is all about.

Monday through Thursday, we explore ideas from authors, thought leaders, and exemplary organizations. On Friday, I share something about myself or what we are working on at PCI.

In recent weeks, we’ve been exploring ideas and best practices to become a better negotiator, from the FBI’s lead hostage negotiator, … continue reading

1: What do Marcus Aurelius, Cato, Seneca, Thomas Jefferson, James Stockdale, Epictetus, Theodore Roosevelt, and George Washington have in common?  

“They explicitly practiced and studied Stoicism,” writes Ryan Holiday in The Obstacle Is the Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Trials into Triumph. “We know this for a fact.” 

What exactly does it mean to be a stoic?

Philosopher and writer Nassim Nicholas Taleb defines a Stoic as someone … continue reading

1: “Late in his reign, sick and possibly near death, [the Roman Emperor] Marcus Aurelius received surprising news,” writes Ryan Holiday in The Obstacle Is the Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Trials into Triumph.

“His old friend and most trusted general, Avidius Cassius, had rebelled in Syria,” Ryan notes. “Having heard the emperor was vulnerable or possibly dead, the ambitious general had decided to declare himself Caesar and … continue reading

1: “I have bad news,” the CEO tells the packed conference room. “The project has failed spectacularly. Tell me what went wrong?”

“What?!?” someone says. “But the project hasn’t started yet.”

“Exactly,” the CEO responds. “Our job is to identify everything that could go wrong before the project starts. And then take action now so that those things never happen.”

This exercise is called a premortem. It was designed by … continue reading

“If you will be hard on yourself, life will be easy on you.  But if you insist on being easy on yourself, life is going be hard on you.” -Zig Ziglar

“Discipline weighs ounces; regret weighs tons.” -Jim Rohn

1: Performing at the highest level requires discipline.

“Self-discipline is the ability to make yourself do what you should do, whether you feel like it or not,” Elbert Hubbard once said.

If … continue reading

1: “Top people go where the standards are the highest,” business philosopher Jim Rohn would say.

If we want to attract and keep people, “treat them like a crack team, with clear standards and disciplines that we insist on every single day,” writes Brian Tracy in his book Sales Management, “The very best salespeople perform at the highest levels when they are working in a tightly organized, well-disciplined sales … continue reading


I have a new role at PCI.  In addition to being CEO, I am also currently serving as the leader of our outside sales team. Two weeks ago, our longtime leader of that team came to me and expressed a desire to step back from the leadership role.  Prior to starting a search to find our new outside sales leader, I chose to take this role on for a period of … continue reading