We are on a journey…

We are on a journey…

In Mararet J. Wheatley’s latest book, So Far From Home, the reader is taken into the world of right now reality and after that sober encounter then shown a map of how to approach the future. Becoming a warrior for the soul is her approach and it’s an intriguing and challenging idea.

In business one traditional approach is to think that you are at war with the competition. That approach would have you overcome the competition with superior service, products, and with style. Your brand is the brand people must want etc.

I’m from the school that believes that war is not the answer and never was never will be but rather finding ways to cooperate and to compete with yes, great service and products but also with an eye towards fulfilling the customers’ needs.

No doubt business can be a struggle at times and feel like a battle…a battle for survival. Being embattled by the challenges of owning and running a successful business is pretty ‘normal’. So here is the link back to Wheatley, she is saying that we need to build our inner and outer resources to deal with the massive changes coming. She goes into what she means by that but here I will just say that as a business owner you must develop supportive relationships with as many people as you can. Also, you would be well advised to develop your interior strengths as well.

Your resilient character will do more to sustain you than you can imagine. Be confident and be smart about what you are undertaking. Be humble and be open to constructive criticism. Be flexible and yet be true to your values and to your vision. Be grateful at all times and show your gratitude often to those supporting you and your vision. Be a leader by example and acknowledge those around you who take initiative to get things done.

These are simple ideas, easily written down but sometimes easily forgotten.  Keep a way to remind yourself what’s truly important and start your day with a smile on your face. As Mr. Jobs said the joy is in the journey not the destination.

Keep on keeping on…

10 Traits you must have to succeed

NEWS FLASH (You may know this, but let me remind you…)

Investor’s Business Daily has spent years analyzing leaders and successful people in all walks of life. Most leaders have 10 traits that, when combined, can turn dreams into reality.

1. HOW YOU THINK IS EVERYTHING: Always be positive. Think success, not failure. Beware of a negative environment.

2. DECIDE UPON YOUR TRUE DREAMS AND GOALS: Write down your specific goals and develop a plan to reach them.

3. TAKE ACTION: Goals are nothing without action. Don’t be afraid to get started now. Just do it.

4. NEVER STOP LEARNING:  Go back to school or read books. Get training and acquire skills.

5. BE PERSISTENT AND WORK HARD: Success is a marathon, not a sprint. Never give up.

6. LEARN TO ANALYZE DETAILS: Get all the facts, all the input. Learn from your mistakes.

7. FOCUS YOUR TIME AND MONEY:  Don’t let other people or things distract you.

8. DON’T BE AFRAID TO INNOVATE; BE DIFFERENT: Following the herd is a sure way to mediocrity.

9. DEAL AND COMMUNICATE WITH PEOPLE EFFECTIVELY:  No person is an island. Learn to understand and motivate others.

10. BE HONEST AND DEPENDABLE; TAKE RESPONSIBILITY: Otherwise, Numbers 1-9 won’t matter.

Business Principles…some suggestions

Greetings from the Mt Shasta. I’m reviewing some issues for upcoming blogs. Does your company (do you?) have a list of principles by which you stand for in the running of your business?

Try these on for size and or create your own is you don’t already have some.

Business Principles 

1 We operate our business with integrity and that being of service will be profitable.

2. We accumulate cash reserves; we pay ourselves and our workers and vendors on time.

3. We take responsibility for our business commitments and obligations and remember that we are in charge of the professionals that work for us.

4. We maintain clear and orderly financial records.

5. We have clear knowledge of our overhead, operating expenses, pricing and profit, accounts receivable, accounts payable and all of our assets and liabilities.

6. We have a business plan, and goals and visions for ourselves and our business.

7. We place all agreements in writing.

8. We budget our time realistically and focus our work time on generating revenues.

9.  We value our goods and services and price them accordingly.

10. We are willing and able to ask for help when we need it. And we are at peace with ourselves and allow our business to grow and expand harmoniously.

Motivation vs Motivation

Why do

you do

what you do?

Motivation is understood to be the ultimate motive(s) behind your actions.  When I think about what motivates me I start with a list that might look like this:  enjoyment, fulfillment, make others happy, make money, be healthy, be a good neighbor, be a good citizen etc. All very OK, but maybe not quite as deep as one can go. You will need to go deeper if you intend to find your true motivations.

Why should you do this search?  To find your deepest motivations will help you achieve clarity and to sustain your desire for success when the odds seem to be against you. That said, when you do feel that the odds are against you it would be advisable to get a second opinion. One of the companies I started failed spectacularly because I was not in touch with my real motivation and I did not seek outside help and would not accept other people’s ideas. I wanted to do it my way, I knew I was right, I knew the time was right, I knew the service was right because I did have focus groups telling me so, and I knew if I pushed just a bit harder I would ‘win’.

I lost. My ego was so invested in my way of doing the business that I couldn’t see the forest for the trees. The business opportunity window slammed down hard and because of my nearsightedness I almost lost my family and I did lose my life savings. I know now that I’m not alone in having that kind of experience but when one is in that situation and you feel like you are alone that is a big clue that you need to stop and get help. I didn’t and I paid a huge price on many levels. Yes, I learned a lot and I am here to help others not make that kind of mistake.

I have won on other ventures and I would say that the main difference is in having the right staff and or partners to both share the vision and share the burdens and the wins.

“But, Michael, I’m just a one person show, how can get to that next level?”

If there were a simple blueprint for success in business there would be a zillion books already written with all those helpful suggestions or rules or laws printed inside. To be fair there are a lot of great books that have good advice and/or info in them. Regarding the motivation inquiry I can endorse one of my all-time favorites: “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.” By Stephen R. Covey. This is a classic business/life book that will never go out of worth.

Reading thoughtful books should be part of your daily regime. Even if it’s just a few minutes before you nod off each evening. Do not short change yourself, be proactive and find out what is/are your true and deepest motivations.

And keep on keeping on…