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Be There and Be Dumb: Tips for your First Day on the Job
by On April 12, 2017

Ah, the first day: racking your brain trying to figure out what the person in charge wants, worrying about the timing of your bowel movements, unpacking your crayons, and well, that was just second grade. Though you’ve hopefully graduated from wax to ink in terms of writing utensils, those same worries also come with your first day at a new job. For that reason, we decided to some advice to anyone preparing to sit down at a new desk.

Be There

The similarities between elementary school and workplace don’t stop at nerves, because a crucial key to success is similar: just be there. My dad’s take on school was always: “50% of it is just showing up.” and unpacking the phrase, you find it has some hidden wisdom. Being punctual and concentrating on being in the moment are two things that are often taken for granted, but go a long way in making a first impression. If you establish yourself as reliable, responsible, and focused in the office, regardless of your work output, superiors will see you as someone who has potential to add value to the company.

Being there also means taking advantage of the day to day opportunities to interact with co-workers. Often the toughest part of starting a new job can be finding where you fit in the office’s social environment, and being there means jumping at every chance to find out. Somebody invites you to lunch? Be there. Darts after work? Be there. Morning roller derby league on Wednesdays? Be there.

Be Dumb

Yes, everyone says it. So, why aren’t you listening? ASK QUESTIONS. The first few days in the office are a safe zone where you can clear up any confusion, and be inquisitive with the guise of being the “newbie” to protect you. It’s almost complete stupidity immunity.

Again, everyone has been told this before, so ask the questions that will separate yourself from the other recent hires. Be patient during explanations and have the courage to ask about processes. You were hired in part for your perspective, so being afraid to question how things are done is doing both yourself and the company a disservice. Now, do so without sounding like a cocky-know-it-all. Make sure you understand the dynamic, before you suggest improvements. However, getting involved in a discussion about how the company does things not shows you care enough to about what your superior is saying to apply critical thinking, but also shows your aptitude as an employee.

So, there you have it, if day one nerves have your mind racing, you can rest easy, knowing all you have to do is be there and be dumb… A few extra crayons pens might help too.

Mind Your Business Manners
by On February 1, 2017
Relationships are the heart of a successful business, and in relationships, manners matter. Business etiquette goes a long way in maintaining existing connections and forming new ones. Traditional etiquette practices are still important today, but digital technology presents new considerations. It doesn’t take long to brush up on your etiquette and learn to mind your business manners.

Conversation balance

As a leader, you have a lot to say, but some people say too much. Not only is finding balance in a conversation polite, but it’s the best way to have a productive discussion. One of the biggest mistakes a person can make is to dominate the conversation, spending more time talking about themselves than taking an interest in the person across the table. People who habitually dominate a conversation come across as self-absorbed. This is a turnoff for prospective employees, potential clients and current business partners.
The opposite extreme of conversation balance can also be true. Not sharing enough can be just as damaging as talking too much. Leaders who don’t contribute to discussions won’t be able to promote their ideas, share their goals and guide their employees. Their lack of participation can make them seem uninterested or unintelligent. Good conversationalists find the balance between dominance and weakness in a discussion.

Phone attention etiquette 

Communication methods have expanded with technology, and now many business conversations take place online. Business leaders have an obligation to stay connected to their partners, employees and clients. It’s a big responsibility that requires a lot of time and attention, but some people go overboard and come across as impolite. Constantly checking text messages, emails and voicemails is rude and frustrating during a face-to-face interaction. While you’re checking your messages, you’re sending the message that you don’t value the person who is right in front of you. The best practice is to set your phone aside and focus your attention on having a productive conversation in real life.

Online communication

Online communication is standard for every business. In some cases, the only contact you will have with customers is via an Internet platform, whether it’s social media, email or an instant messaging service. Messages should reflect the company’s identity and values across all platforms. Understanding how each different social media application is used will help you have an effective online presence and dodge social media blunders. Since every business has their own standards and policies for online engagement, it’s impossible to set strict rules. There are some general guidelines, however, that are applicable for every business.
Emails should be concise and professional, using correct grammar. They should always include a subject line and a sign-off to keep everything organized and avoid confusion. On social media platforms, it’s important to keep business and personal accounts separate. Monitor them regularly, because consumers expect prompt responses. Late replies or ignored inquiries will be seen as rude. Posts should be short and to the point, with correct punctuation and spelling. When you engage with consumers and business partners over an instant messaging platform, the conversation should be a brief exchange of information. This is best for problems and questions that can be easily resolved.

Etiquette in the little things

Even with the rise of digital communication, traditional etiquette practices continue to be relevant. Make an effort to learn the names of employees and partners at every level. These people are the foundation of your success, and this small gesture will show that you value their support and contribution to your business. Refrain from badmouthing the competition, employees or clients. You never know who is listening, and this can leave a strong negative impression. Sending a personalized thank you note might seem old fashioned, but it’s an easy way to build a positive reputation.
Successful leaders learn to invest in their relationships with partners, employees and consumers. Etiquette is an important part of that. Business etiquette today is built upon traditional practices and adjusted to accommodate digital advancements. Whether you’re building new connections or maintaining old ones, don’t forget to mind your business manners.
Don’t filter “f-words” out of business conversations
by On December 14, 2016
There are a considerable number of factors that wear down your thoughts and emotions as an entrepreneur. In order to stay on top, however, it takes a quick mind and mental stamina. Entrepreneurs learn to articulate their goals and strategies, but some words can cause them to stumble. There are a lot of “f-words” in a business owner’s vocabulary, especially when the business is just getting started. You might feel overwhelmed by finances, fatigue and failure, but these mental obstacles can be overcome. You’ve already talked yourself into starting a business, now let’s discuss how to keep it moving forward.

Finances

In addition to startup costs, small businesses have operating expenses and unexpected challenges. As an entrepreneur, one of your main roles is to build revenue. Initially, this can be a slow and daunting task. Financial frustration can either motivate you to work harder or crush your business dreams. Many adults say that finances are one of the leading causes of stress in their lives. An ideal solution is to make more money, but confidence in your money management skills will also help ease financial stress.
Before diving into business ownership, research all the potential risks. It’s more fun to dream about success, but being prepared for the worst will have more practical benefits. Another way to ease your mind from financial worries is to build a safety net for your savings. This might happen over years of careful planning or through income from a side job. This layer of financial security will bring peace of mind and allow you to grow your business.

Fatigue

As an entrepreneur and a leader, you’re working from the ground up, and it’s exhausting. You’re the one who puts in extra hours and pours your heart into the business. All these long days and late nights can lead to an unhealthy lifestyle that affects your personal and professional life. When you’re devoting all your time to growing a business, other areas of your life often suffer, such as eating right and exercising regularly. These habits will have long-term negative health effects. Fatigue can build up and lead to burnout. It takes innovation and drive for an entrepreneur to get established. Tiredness is normal, but extreme fatigue can hurt your business.
Investing time in your personal health is difficult because it seems so simple. The best ways to avoid fatigue are exercise, eating well and getting a good night’s sleep. Unfortunately, when you’re busy, it’s easy to skip a workout, grab a fast food meal and stay awake all night. These shortcuts will only lead you to fatigue and overtiredness faster. Giving yourself a break is a strategic move that will benefit your personal health and strengthen your business.

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Failure

In spite of your best tactics and business models, failure is a possibility. The best entrepreneurs understand that not only is failure part of the process, but it can also lead you to success. When you encounter setbacks and challenges in your business, they become defining moments that will either make or break you. It may be the only “f-word” that never enters your vocabulary, but being honest about failure will help you and your business over come it.
The reality is that failure, or even multiple failures, are common among startups. Perhaps more important than the failure itself is how you respond to it. If you have a plan for failure, you can provide steady leadership for your employees. Preparation means you won’t have to make difficult decisions in the heat of the moment, because you will have everything thought out and ready for action. With a plan, you will spend less time in confusion and more time in recovery. This means you can review your mistakes and start fresh, armed with knew experience. It’s also important to recognize when to ask for help and whom to ask. Accepting support and guidance can prevent your business from reaching the crisis level.
Failure, like fatigue and finances, are some of the taboo “f-words” commonly used among entrepreneurs. These words cause dreamers and leaders to hesitate when they’re articulating their business goals and pursuing success. Your business outcome depends on how you overcome these mental barriers. Talking through these challenges will ensure that your business continues to grow.
Steps to Overcome Fear in Business
by On November 16, 2016

For many of us, starting a business doesn’t mean we’ve perfected and polished our entrepreneurial traits. Many of us acquire these traits throughout our journey. The biggest hurdle that many have to overcome is fear of business. You want to grow your business, make noise, and become the pinnacle of your industry. However, fear can cripple these efforts. Throughout my journey, I have learned some incredible tactics to overcome crippling fear. We are going to dig into those with this weeks article.

Replace your Beliefs

Did you know that our actions and behaviors are governed by past beliefs and life experiences? We’re trapped in our old belief, and have a tendency to assume things. To overcome our fear of business, we should adopt a new set of beliefs.

Understand what Business Means to You

What is your intention to build a business? Do you think past the earnings? What does business mean to you? Do you have a vision of your life? What is your mission in business? Once you get enthusiastic about your mission, the fear of starting a business will lessen.

Cultivate an Entrepreneurial Mindset

Many of us would not have the entrepreneurial mindset after we begin a business. That is okay; the entrepreneurial mindset can develop along the way. By acquiring the entrepreneurial mindset, we won’t give up our business easily. We overcome our fear in business by creating the entrepreneurial traits.

Build Self Confidence

One of many root causes in fear is a lack of self-confidence. I see that youngsters have better self-confidence than adults. Self-confidence displays your emotional maturity. Many adults lack self-confidence because of their failures, they usually accumulate their fear. By building self-confidence, you might be growing your emotional state, and your business fear will subside.

Market Yourself

The primary fear in business may very well be the fear of marketing. Most hate selling; usually there is a perception that marketing is the same as selling. They don’t prefer to push folks to buy, and so they face rejection. Nonetheless, there are many marketing strategies and techniques developed, and it is not essential to confront people. You’ll be able to overcome your fear of business by learning marketing. Develop a unique marketing strategy for your business. Place yourself and your branding properly so you will appeal to people.

Business Coaching

As a business coach, what matters is having the ability to deal with people. Are you scared to face people? You need to conquer this fear. Helping people solve their issues is what business coaching is all about. If you want to succeed you need to overcome the fear of coaching. Hence, first understand what it takes to succeed as a business coach.

Ask yourself: what am I afraid of?

Fight with your fear. This helps to know where the fear is coming from. Try to analyze the cause of the fear. Put yourself in a situation where you need to handle some clients. If you are scared of something, find a solution to overcome the fear.

Preplanning: If you prepare yourself in advance, it is easier to overcome your fear. Preplan and then face others. This includes preparing presentations so that you feel confident enough to face others.

Relax, be at ease: Don’t panic. Take a deep breath and relax. Understand that your clients are not going to hurt you. In fact, you are the one who is in charge and going to solve their issues. So understand all their queries and then try to sort them step-by-step.

Arrive early: See to it you arrive a little early if there is an appointment set. If you are late, the fear factor will increase. Being 10 to 15 minutes early, that will give you time to prepare to face your client.

You need to understand these commitments. You are committed to your clients, but you find yourself busy overcoming your fears rather than solving their issues. So if you realize that you are committed towards responsibility, focus on the important activities rather than getting scared. Whenever your fear follows you, just remind yourself that you are committed to making a difference to other peoples’ lives. Your mind reflects both positive and negative aspects of any situation. This way you will be able to stick to your commitments and reach your goals.

Express yourself. Communication is the shortest distance between two people. So share your commitments as it gains more power when you let others know about them. Thus, creating a new commitment and sharing it with others is equally important to overcome your fear. Preplan and make a list of the clients you are going to call, what appropriate actions you are expecting to take and with whom you would be sharing your experiences.

So what are you waiting for? Just make a note of all the commitments and try to meet them as soon as you can. If you have a positive approach towards your work no one can stop you from winning. So get all fears out of your mind and coach as many clients you can.

Change Your Attitude for the Better
by On October 15, 2016

“Our attitude towards life determines life’s attitude towards us.” A quote from, John N. Mitchell who nailed it on the head. No one could be more accurate when discussing the power of our attitude, and it’s immense effect it has on our success in life.

Take notice to people who are happier and more successful then compare them to the people who walk around grumpy and pessimistic. They all have something in common, a positive attitude. On top of that, they generally enjoy life to a fuller extent. The driving force in our lives is our attitude— it will pull us to our demise or push us to greater heights.

Learning and tendencies just come naturally stemming from our birth, yet our attitudes and personalities are developed later on, in part through relationships and experiences. Attitudes are developed during childhood years and continue to take shape, constantly evolve, and change over the years. Affected by day-to-day interactions and experiences.

Delve a little deeper into the makeup of your attitude. Almost everything in your life has an influence on your current attitude. Everything you’ve battled through, the people you’ve met or interacted with have an opportunity to have an effect on your attitude; and again this is not including our leanings and tendencies. If you believe that you fall into the category of people who think, that all these factors have molded you into a person with a poor attitude towards life, there needs to be a change in your attitude! Opportunity for change is always there, you just make it happen. Here’s how to make that happen.

IDENTIFY & UNDERSTAND WHAT YOU WANT TO CHANGE

First, realize and understand fully what needs to be changed. Once you know what needs to be changed you must put in place precise goals ahead of you; for that is what will drive you through the process. Goals should be set with any endeavor if success is desired. Along with goals coincides your drive. What’s pushing you to get up in the morning? Why do you do what you do? If there is no answer to those questions there will be a constant crutch stopping you from arriving at success. Every person has a drive, it’s just a matter of finding it. Diving deep into yourself, self-evaluating, and above all else being honest with yourself. Set goals and find that drive!

LOOK AT A ROLE MODEL

Whatever it is… it can be achieved; be a little more optimistic, social or patient. Second, find someone who has achieved the attitude you desire most and take it all in. When you find that person who inspires you and encourages you, study them. Be careful to not embody them just let them be your guidance. Always be you and never try to be anyone else. Use this encouragement to move past your temporary failures and take steps towards being a better person.

THINK ABOUT HOW YOUR ATTITUDE CHANGE WILL AFFECT YOUR LIFE

To tackle obstacles on the road to self-betterment you need to uncover what this change will do to your life. This change can mean different things and may be applicable to many different areas of your life. Social life, career, perhaps business? Focus on the effects of this change and your chances of reaching your goal will be greater.

CHOOSE THE RIGHT COMPANY

“Bad company corrupts good moral” is a guideline that must be put into place if you want this change to stay in effect. Surround yourself with the right people and the correct working environment. People who will continue what you started on this road to a better you. You cannot expect change if you put yourself in a crowd of people who won’t support you and pertain to detrimental traits. Maybe this means new friends. In short look for attitudes that love life.The stress of change will lift.

BELIEVE THAT YOU ARE ABLE TO CHANGE

Sometimes the biggest roadblock is ourselves and the inability to trust our able-ness. If you don’t believe… it just won’t happen. You have three options: Either never start, give up quickly and completely skip the opportunity to succeed; or believe, never give up, fight every day, and…
conquer.

Average Sucks. Learn to be Great.
by On August 8, 2016

If I had to guess, I would say that you’re a dreamer. That you spend your days with your mind in the clouds imagining what it would be like if you had the kind of money needed to own yachts, private planes, and homes in multiple cities or even continents. You don’t want to be like most people, because you know you’re bigger and better than that. They’re average, and you’re above that. Most people are broke, unhealthy, and with too little time to actually enjoy their lives. They’re certainly not cruising around Croatia with a yacht full of expensive spirits and caviar. However, you have to be aware that your brain and your mind have a lot of unconscious patterns that hold you back. What kind of patterns? Well…

A BIG PART OF YOU WANTS TO BE AVERAGE

I know, say it ain’t so, right? Starting in elementary school, through a combination of education and our brain’s natural urge toward safety, we all developed a strong unconscious desire to be like everyone else around us. We want to fit in. We want to be average. We want to skate through life under the radar, performing just enough to get by but not enough to land ourselves on our own yachts. Average is safe, but how safe is average really?

WHAT DOES AVERAGE LOOK LIKE IN AMERICA?

Here’s a portrait of the average American:
Physically – 68 percent of Americans 20 and over are overweight. 34 percent are clinically obese. This average gets worse every year, year after year.
Relationships – Over half of marriages in the United States end in a divorce, a statistic that’s held for more than a quarter century.
Professionally – Somewhere between 75 and 85 percent of Americans actively dislike their jobs.
Financially – The average income in America hovers around $40,000, less than in the 1940s when adjusted for inflation. The average American saves less than $2,000 per year. Do the math: It means they can retire around age 96. Look around, and you’ll see that at least half of American households regularly struggle with “too much month at the end of money”.

SETTLING FOR AVERAGE IS SELLING YOURSELF SHORT

Looking at those statistics now, do you still think you want to be just average? Or are you going to seize the moment, promise yourself that you will never turn into the person listed above, and start training your brain for success TODAY? In our book, Train Your Brain For Success, you are going to learn some fundamental principles…principles that have been proven over literally thousands of years to help individuals and organizations see consistent upward growth in every area. Professionally, Financially, Physically, Emotionally, Spiritually, and in all types of relationships. The greatest thing about success? IT’S SIMPLE. Not easy, but simple. Learn these fundamentals and apply them diligently, and you definitely will achieve the things you want.