First of all, I’d like to take a moment to wish you and your family a wonderful happy holidays and all the best in the new year.

What a year it has been — full of monumental shifts in the global economy, revolutions in countries tired of the status quo and dramatic fluctuations in currencies we assumed would always be stable.

If there is a major theme for this past year now emblazoned in the front of our minds, it’s that change, is now the constant — and adapting to it is how we move into 2012 and beyond.

The challenge though, is that we as human beings prefer to avoid change, our natural tendency is to default to what “is” rather than “what will be”.

With that in mind, I’d like share with you five predictions for 2012 that will prepare you for “what will be”.

After working personally this year with hundreds of high-performance entrepreneurs, business owners and sales teams — there is one thing that will never change, no matter what happens in the future — and that is that TRUST will always be the most powerful currency of all.

It will diffuse conflicts, build long lasting relationships, create fortunes and change the world for the better.

With that in mind, here are my personal predictions for 2012 that I hope will give you clarity for how to achieve and surpass your personal and professional goals in the upcoming year:

1. High-touch will make a comeback

Email, online, social media and e-tools will continue to be a central medium for communication, but they won’t be the main driver that will create deep and long lasting trusted relationships with potential new clients.

Technology has made us a society more and more detached from human contact — and that’s not a good thing.

More business people are “hiding” behind their computers now more than ever.

Many have lost the art of humanizing the sales process.

What you’re going to see next year is that the sales winners will not be afraid to pick up the phone to connect with prospective clients and will be encouraging more face-to-face contact.

“Old school” you say?

Human contact and conversation is the foundation of creating trust, and trust equals sustainable sales growth.

2. Facebook time will distract you from sales results

The amount of time “professionals” are spending posting on facebook is staggering.

Facebook is the ultimate happy place, most post happy thoughts (rarely negative), that’s why it’s addicting.

But it has two “faces”. Recently someone made a comment on one of my “mindset quotes” that my staff post for me a few times a week.

It was a very smart and interesting comment from this gentleman, I was impressed.

I clicked on his profile and photos of him drunk at a party were the first thing I saw on his page.

Happy place and a very bizarre place.

Spend your time more wisely by creating leads and sales through a trust-based sales funnel.

3. Direct mail will make a comeback

“Direct mail doesn’t work and it’s too expensive” — you never hear that from those who are making a fortune with it in REAL businesses.

As everyone is jumping to cheaper free sales mediums, our office and home mail boxes are getting emptier everyday.

Following the crowd in business is not where you’ll find the most successful entrepreneurs.

Get your sales process systematized, wrap it in a trust-based message, send it in the mail, and you’ll generate more higher-quality leads and sales than you ever thought possible.

Being a contrarian while everyone else runs the opposite direction is a massive leverage opportunity in your business.

4. Moving away from branding to one-on-one natural communication will be how you will stand out

I received a few emails from a company interested in offering me their services.

The way the emails were written felt like a computer wrote it, detached and unnatural — and they were from a company you know well.

It was like some marketing person wrote the emails about 1,000 feet over my head.

They didn’t speak directly to me with natural languaging.

It was pure “corporate speak”.

Write to your prospective clients as if they were sitting in front of you listening attentively to what you have to say.

Connecting one-on-one and create a natural conversation is the secret to breaking virtually every sales barrier.

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Toby now 8 years old (right)
and his brother Nathan (left)

5. Our children will be our ultimate mentors

My son Toby just turned 8 years old yesterday.

I’ve written a lot about Toby, who has Down Syndrome, and how he continues to show me how wise he is and how much I need to learn.

Are you listening to your children?

Are you watching how they are present in the moment, don’t have a hidden agenda (usually:) and how they create trust with other kids?

We as “adults” have a lot too learn from our children and the more humble we are, the wiser we become.

Trust will be the most powerful currency in 2012, regardless of how the world changes.

Are you maximizing trust in your sales process?

Something to think about as you start the new year.

Have a safe and wonderful holidays.

Feel free to leave your comments below.

To your success,