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The Potential of Change

I have found that in life and in business that if you are unable to adapt to change quickly, things will become very frustrating and you will find yourself lagging behind and eventually, become stagnant and quit. I find myself often reminding people that change is the only constant; and it honestly is a constant that you can count on and oftentimes, you have absolutely no control over when change occurs. So, instead of feeling like a victim of change, let's become masters of it!

 

The Potential of Change - Are You Watching?

Very rarely will things change suddenly. Most of the time change will start as a gradual process that will begin to gain momentum and eventually, become the new constant until it changes again. You see this in sports, fashion, food, music, cultural norms and in business. There are so many people who hate change and for the most part, if you ask them why, they have very little concrete reasons why. Many people will tell you that it changed suddenly! But, if we are honest with ourselves, we saw it coming a long time ago but chose to ignore it hoping that something would prevent it from happening. Guess what? change still came!

Let's try this next time; let's become more observant, let's keep an eye out for any changes that might be occurring. Whether it is in your department, in your organizational structure, leadership, business model, marketing strategies or staff. Let's decide to get ahead of it so we are not "caught off guard". Change is not a bad thing all the time, it is simply change. Look for it, embrace it and then, do something about it instead of trying to fight it. Being observant to ongoing or shifts in your particular niche' or vertical can mean the difference in becoming an industry leader or a "Johnny come lately". Change can really work to your advantage if you have the proper perspective. You just have to change your perception of change.

The Potential of Change - Change How You See Things

"What if it's a bad thing Dave?" "We do not want to embrace bad things Dave!" And you are absolutely right. But let's focus on the type of changes that pertain to our businesses and how we can change our perception of those changes. There had been many times when I thought changes in things like marketing for instance; inbound market sounded like making "Root beer" flavored potato chips and I don't think that will last long! But the truth of the matter is that inbound marketing is one of the best ways to market if you truly want to scale your business and keep and expand your repeat, loyal customers.

Look, there are so many business owners that try everything that comes down the pike and have very little ROI to show for it; so now, when they see or hear about a "proven" marketing tool, they pass. If you read one of my older articles called "You Can't Stop Marketing", you'll see that you can't do that. Things HAVE CHANGED and we need to learn how to adapt as business owners. So many small business owners are resistant to change and wonder why the own their job (they spend 12 or more hours a day and make very little progress).

There are few successful business owners that truly invest in themselves. Rarely will a small business owner to go to a business workshop, spend thirty to forty-five minutes watching a webinar or become involved in their local Chamber of Commerce. These examples are just a few things that we can do that has the potential to pay huge dividends in our businesses but, they will require you to change. I think that many small business owners believe that if they change, it equates to being wrong and they cannot admit to being wrong! Wow! That is a lot of pressure and pride working there. There is not a perfect person on the face of the earth! We learn from our mistakes (hopefully) and make the needed adjustments. Failure should never be the end, it should never cause you to throw in the towel. Learning from our mistakes and making those needed adjustments can be the difference in achieving success.

The Potential of Change - Change What You Do

Ladies and gentlemen listen, being resistant, adapting, overcoming, taking advantage of and looking for the next big thing to use to your advantage before anyone else does, is all a part of how we perceive change.

I really want you to be the best business owner that you can possibly be and to do that will require you to learn how to use changes to your advantage. I need all of you to be as innovative as you can possibly be. Innovation is the key! We have gone from rooms filled with one computer to desktops, laptops, and even tablets. We have gone from using telegraphs to calling the telephone operator directly, to dialing direct, to cordless, to pagers, to massive mobile phones, to phones that fit in your purse or your pocket.

Innovation is a term that the business sector uses in place of change. Invention, Revolution, Modernization, Improvement, and Advance are synonyms of innovation and each word has an element of change in them. Let's not shrink from change out of fear but be the innovators that move things forward! Let's be the ones that are the front-runners, even how we interact with each other. You realize that competition does not equate enemy. The pie is so big and we can actually benefit from strategic (legal) collaboration from time to time. (That's for another article to come). So, can you change? Can you embrace change and become the master of it? Can you be the innovator that I know you can be? Can you change?

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6 Ways to Motivate Others

If you’re leading a group of people towards success, you must learn how to motivate others. If you concentrate on understanding what motivates others and you meet the needs of these people, you’ll be on the right track for a positive and enlightening experience for all involved.

 

 

Once a person’s base needs are met, they usually move on to working on certain needs of self fulfilment. For example, if someone is hungry, they won’t be able to concentrate on a critical thinking task. In this case you’ll need to make sure that this person has had lunch before the task needs to be completed. But how can you motivate them to complete certain tasks once base needs have been fulfilled?

Try one or more of the following ways of motivating people:

1. Treat People Kindly. As a leader you need to treat the people helping you with the utmost respect and kindness. Hand out praise when it’s warranted. You might not know it, but it’s a big motivation booster when people are treated right. People enjoy knowing when they’re doing a good job and enjoy working with people that treat others with kindness.

2. Give People Responsibility. If there are certain tasks that you’re allowed to delegate to others, by all means choose someone to take responsibility for that task. When people are fully responsible, they’ll be more likely to find the motivation to complete the task. This is because, as a part of a group, they may not feel like their hard work matters, but when they’re responsible it certainly matters. They also know that they’re being held accountable for the success or failure of the project.

3. Be a Good Listener. No one likes to feel like they don’t matter. Just because you have final say doesn’t mean that you can’t get some help with important decision making. People enjoy feeling like they’re making a difference. Always keep an open ear and you’ll be motivating your team to come up with solutions and creative ideas.

4. Set Stretched Goals. Think long and hard about how your goal setting abilities can teach you how to motivate others. You don’t want to set goals that are too easy. Your team might reach them quickly but they won’t be pushed to become the best they can be. On the other end, you don’t want to set goals that are unattainable either. Your team will quickly lose motivation because they’ll never get the feeling of having met their goals. You want to find a goal that would push them to achieve just a little more than they have in the past and keep going from there.

5. Get to Know People. You may not want to be personal friends with your colleagues, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t get to know them as people. Keep lines of communication open and get to know your team by paying attention to their wants, needs, strengths and weaknesses. People are smart and they’ll know when they have a leader that cares and a leader that doesn’t. They’ll certainly be more motivated to work hard for somebody that cares about them.

6. Keep Everyone in the Know. Nobody likes to be left in the dark. Make sure that you’re open about your thinking and decisions with the people you’re motivating. Sure, sometimes there will be things that you’re not supposed to share. You just need to make an effort to spread the word around when you can communicate important issues.

Remember that when you’re working on motivating others, it’s definitely important to strengthen their sense of belonging. You’re leading a little family and when everyone’s happy, they’re motivated to achieve big things.

This article was written for the Life Optimizer Blog by Mark Foo.  Mark Foo has brought together 48 personal development bloggers and writers to co-author The 77 Traits of Highly Successful People eBook that spells out all of the success secrets of the very successful people. This eBook is available to you FREE and you can grab your free copy now at http://www.77SuccessTraits.com.

 

Steve Jobs on Customer Experience

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Video: Similar Story Telling

three simple, yet very powerful ways to use similar story.

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101 Ways to Captivate a Business Audience

There's nothing worse than sitting in the audience while an inept speaker stumbles through an ill-conceived business presentation-- unless, of course, you're the one floundering in the spotlight. In 101 Ways to Captivate a Business Audience, Sue Gaulke, founder of the Speaker's Training Camp, strips the mysteries from the process by showing how to prepare and present an effective address that will successfully involve your audience and deliver your message.

The guide presents 101 audience-tested anecdotes, experiences, quotes and insights designed to help readers become captivating, creative and stress-free presenters. It teaches "how-to" skills and learnable behaviours that can be put to immediate use. Information on controlling nerves is also included.

It is extremely quick and easy to read. The ideas are stimulating and there are very relevant topics such as its steak and sizzle technique to keep the listeners on their feet.

 

Buy the Book ... from Fishpond.com.au  or Amazon

 

 

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Even if I have to stop work, my expenses don’t stop …

HMMM ... that's a point worth considering.

 

Like many self-employed people you have income protection insurance that covers you for up to a maximum 75% of pre-tax income.  This in itself is a sensible approach.

However, such a policy isn't designed to cover things which don't stop even if you do.

What things?

 

Leasing charges on capital purchases.

Bank charges.

Business phone bills.

Wages for employees not involved in generating income.

Rent on business premises.

 

This small listing is not at all exhaustive, but it shows the potential costs you will face if you can't work

To address this, life insurers have developed business expenses (BE) or business overheads insurance (BOI)).

 

How does it work?

It works pretty much the same as  your income protection does.  The same definition of disability applies and you still have an excess or waiting period - two or four weeks - but the full payment period is 12 months or 18 months is the full payment of the insurance used up within 12 months.

A further difference is in how much you can cover.  Income protection insurance is limited to 75% of pre-tax income.  By contrast you can cover up to 100% of your expenses with BE.  To conclude, let's take a small example.

Bill, the electrician has ongoing expenses of phone, lease of his van, accountant fees, wages for his receptionist and other costs totalling $7650 per month.  He can take out a BE policy and cover those thus allowing him to recover without the worry.

 

Author: Paul Herring.

Paul is Principal Financial Adviser at PCH Financial delivering advice on financially protecting your life, your income, your family and your savings.

 

 

50 Leadership Quotes to inspire and give perspective

Everybody brings their own perspective to just what makes a good leader, or what constitutes good leadership.

Each of us has their our own values and beliefs and experiences around the subject,

but that doesn't mean we cannot improve our own leadership

or our own leaders

or our own followership by learning from others.

Enjoy these 50 quotes about leadership that I love.  May they bring you new inspiration or that new perspective...

 

 

If one is lucky, a solitary fantasy can totally transform one million realities. —Maya Angelou

When eagles are silent, parrots begin to chatter. — Winston Churchill

What you do has far greater impact than what you say. —Stephen Covey

Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things — Peter F. Drucker

Leaders must be close enough to relate to others, but far enough ahead to motivate them. —John C. Maxwell

We're here for a reason. I believe a bit of the reason is to throw little torches out to lead people through the dark. — Whoopi Goldberg

I start with the premise that the function of leadership is to produce more leaders, not more followers. —Ralph Nader

As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others. —Bill Gates

A leader is a dealer in hope. —Napoleon

All of the great leaders have had one characteristic in common: it was the willingness to confront unequivocally the major anxiety of their people in their time. This, and not much else, is the essence of leadership. —John Kenneth Galbraith

 

Lead and inspire people. Don’t try to manage and manipulate people. Inventories can be managed but people must be lead. —Ross Perot

Our chief want is someone who will inspire us to be what we know we could be. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Management is about arranging and telling. Leadership is about nurturing and enhancing. —Tom Peters

Leadership is not about titles, positions, or flow charts. It is about one life influencing another. — John C. Maxwell

Leadership is lifting a person's vision to high sights, the raising of a person's performance to a higher standard, the building of a personality beyond its normal limitations. —Peter Drucker

>  A leadership checklist: 10 things to do right now to make it a great year

Great leaders are almost always great simplifiers, who can cut through argument, debate, and doubt to offer a solution everybody can understand.    —General Colin Powell

The very essence of leadership is that you have to have a vision. It's got to be a vision you articulate clearly and forcefully on every occasion. You can't blow an uncertain trumpet. —Reverend Theodore Hesburgh

If you want to build a ship, don't drum up the men to gather wood, divide the work, and give orders. Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast and endless sea. — Antoine de Saint-Exupary

Where there is no vision, the people perish. —Proverbs 29:18

A good leader is a person who takes a little more than his share of the blame and a little less than his share of the credit. — John Maxwell

 

The first responsibility of a leader is to define reality. The last is to say thank you. In between, the leader is a servant. —Max DePree

The greatest leader is not necessarily the one who does the greatest things. He is the one that gets the people to do the greatest things.  – President Ronald Reagan

You manage things; you lead people. —Rear Admiral Grace Murray Hopper

Management is efficiency in climbing the ladder of success; leadership determines whether the ladder is leaning against the right wall. —Stephen Covey

To handle yourself, use your head; to handle others, use your heart. —Eleanor Roosevelt

People buy into the leader before they buy into the vision. — John Maxwell

Effective leadership is putting first things first. Effective management is discipline, carrying it out. —Stephen Covey

People ask the difference between a leader and a boss. The leader leads, and the boss drives. – President Theodore Roosevelt

Leadership cannot just go along to get along. Leadership must meet the moral challenge of the day. — Jesse Jackson

Not the cry, but the flight of a wild duck, leads the flock to fly and follow.        —Chinese Proverb

It's hard to lead a cavalry charge if you think you look funny on a horse. —Adlai E. Stevenson II

 

Earn your leadership every day. – Michael Jordan

A leader takes people where they want to go. A great leader takes people where they don't necessarily want to go, but ought to be. —Rosalynn Carter

Leaders think and talk about the solutions. Followers think and talk about the problems. —Brian Tracy

To command is to serve, nothing more and nothing less. —Andre Malraux

The task of leadership is not to put greatness into humanity, but to elicit it, for the greatness is already there – John Buchan

>  Rock-Solid Leadership

Men make history and not the other way around. In periods where there is no leadership, society stands still. Progress occurs when courageous, skillful leaders seize the opportunity to change things for the better. —Harry S. Truman

It is absurd that a man should rule others, who cannot rule himself. —Latin Proverb

The key to successful leadership today is influence, not authority. —Kenneth Blanchard

A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves. —Lao Tzu

Leadership is an action, not a position. — Donald McGannon

 

Leadership is the capacity to transform vision into reality. – Warren G. Bennis

My responsibility is getting all my players playing for the name on the front of the jersey, not the one on the back. –Unknown

The final test of a leader is that he leaves behind him in other men, the conviction and the will to carry on. —Walter Lippman

A good leader leads the people from above them. A great leader leads the people from within them. — M.D. Arnold

Outstanding leaders go out of their way to boost the self-esteem of their personnel. If people believe in themselves, it's amazing what they can accomplish. —Sam Walton

A true leader has the confidence to stand alone, the courage to make tough decisions, and the compassion to listen to the needs of others. He does not set out to be a leader, but becomes one by the equality of his actions and the integrity of his intent. —Douglas MacArthur

He who has never learned to obey cannot be a good commander. —Aristotle

You are not here merely to make a living. You are here in order to enable the world to live more amply, with greater vision, with a finer spirit of hope and achievement. You are here to enrich the world, and you impoverish yourself if you forget the errand. —Woodrow Wilson

A man who wants to lead the orchestra must turn his back on the crowd. —Max Lucado

 

 

... and my favourites ...

If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader. —John Quincy Adams

Average leaders raise the bar on themselves; good leaders raise the bar for others; great leaders inspire others to raise their own bar. —Orrin Woodward

Pivotal Business Network member, Kathy Westgate Keaton

Kathy Keaton was awarded “A Woman to Watch” by the Texas Business Women and Professional Organization. She is an award winning humorous Toastmaster and Texas Clown, and holds the title of “San Angelo’s Funniest Grandmother”

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Your Flagship Product

Your Flagship Product from Pivotal

In a conversation with someone last week, the topic of a "flagship product" came up and I realized that I had never really talked about this before in More Clients.

What's a flagship product?

A flagship product is a product or service that you and your business becomes identified with. It's something that communicates a concept or a solution that people automatically and favorably associate with you.

What a flagship product does is give you and your business instant credibility. When people purchase your flagship product, they are more likely to buy other products and services from you.

A flagship product should have the following characteristics:

1. It provides a unique solution or approach to a problem and is seen as new and memorable.

2. It is the starting point for all of your other spinoff  products or services.

3. It is branded in a distinctive way with a name and identity that is unlike other products or services.

What are some examples of flagship products by InfoGurus? Here are a few that immediately spring to mind:

Guerrilla Marketing - This book, by Jay Conrad Levinson, written in the 80's, has spawned a whole series of Guerrilla Marketing books and seminars. It's become a household name amongst small business owners.

Make Your Site Sell - An e-book launched in 2000 by Ken Evoy that established him as one of the preeminent Internet Gurus and was the genesis of       several other e-books and online products.

The Millionaire Mind - Harv Eker's free three-day workshop on changing your mindset about money. Tens of thousands have attended and it's been a launching pad for his other programs.

     The Wizard of Ads - The brilliant compilation of eZine articles was the first of three books in the series by Roy Williams, and the foundation for his 3-day Wizard Academy in Austin, Texas.

The InfoGuru Marketing Manual - The starting point for most of the customers and clients of Action Plan Marketing. Most people who take my workshops or Marketing Action Groups get this first.

Most of these are marketing-oriented examples off the top of my head, as that's the world I'm most familiar with. But if you look at your particular field, there are usually a few InfoGurus who are well known for some kind of flagship product.

I had been in business for 15 years before I launched my manual. Others take longer, some shorter. But however long it takes, it's a worthwhile goal to aspire to. It will give you leverage you can get no other way.

Your flagship product may be a book, an e-book, a workshop or training program. But it really has to be at the heart of the work you do and must have some passion behind it.

I once worked with a woman who had spent a year writing a book but who really didn't want to work with clients in that area. In other words, her flagship sank! There was nowhere she could sail it to leverage her own business.

Coming up with a new concept takes some time and creativity, but it's certainly worth the effort. Coining the word "InfoGuru" seemed like a gamble at the time (one of those titles that came to me in the shower) but I think it's better than many books or e-books that are completely generic and therefore unmemorable.

Not only has the manual served my business well in terms of being a foundation for all my products and programs, it has earned me substantial income over the past five years. A flagship product can create real marketing momentum.

Oh, here's another one:

Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus by John Gray. This  wildly successful book on relationships was the first of many other Mars-Venus Books. In fact, every book John now writes contains that flagship identity. I'm waiting for "Marketing Secrets of Mars and Venus." I'll get that one!

What's your flagship product going to be?

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The More Clients Bottom Line: The time to start working on a flagship product or service is NOW! It will make a huge long-term impact on your business. Find a way of developing something that stands out from everything else and you're on your way.

Robert Middleton - Action Plan Marketing
Helping Independent Professionals Attract More Clients
http://www.actionplan.com

What’s the Big Idea?

How do the "Big Ideas" that change the course of business come about?

The movie What's the Big Idea? shares the secrets of entrepreneurial success.

 

 

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