Has it really changed that much? The answer, in short, is yes. The business world would appear upside down to former titans of industry like Henry Ford and Andrew Carnegie but I like to think they wouldn’t make any less of an impact now then they did in their time. What, in your opinion, have been the biggest changes in business? I am leaning towards e-mail but there are just too many to choose from. Share your thoughts with me on Facebook and Twitter.
June 21, 2012 By Leave a Comment
Shakespeare is know as one of, if not the, best wordsmiths to have walked this planet. This video from TED Ed focuses on his clever way with insults but I chose it because if it’s ability to showcase the power of words.
Communication is one of the most important things that factor into someone’s success. Strong and clear communicators gain the ears of the world while people who have a hard time getting their message across are ignored. Better communicators make more sales, keep more clients and develop better ideas.
Sometimes even the biggest problems in business can be solved by improving the communication surrounding them. Be sure to share this post with your friends and colleagues and feel free to share any thoughts you may have in the comment box below.
April 23, 2012 By 1 Comment
Forbes was kind enough to do the ‘research’ and provide the list of the richest characters in fiction. Don’t assume that they are just picking these characters at random, they actually crunch the numbers. They did the math on everything from the Dragon Smog’s treasure stash (The Hobbit) to Forest Gump’s shares in Apple. I thought this would be a fun way to start the week off. Enjoy!
April 11, 2012 By Leave a Comment
The world has obviously changed and it continues to do so at an increasing rate. Trying to keep up with where we are often times makes us forget about where we’ve been. That’s why I really liked this infographic. It takes a look back on how the work world has changed and covers how labor day was started. If you ever feel like you’re working too hard or too much, take a look at this and see how things used to be.
April 10, 2012 By Leave a Comment
If you start a business you need to be prepared to fail. No business has a perfect track record, though some are worse than others. What really makes a difference is what you learn from the mistakes you make. If you don’t learn you’re doomed to repeat that failure over and over again. Here are a few ways to get the most out of, and recover from, your epic fails.
The first step in failing successfully is to fail quickly.
The last thing you want to do is let a mistake take up more of your time and resources than it has to. Think of your fails as a learning experience and use them as a process for research and development. Try something out with a small sample group and if it doesn’t stick, move on! Keep trying until you find something that works.
“People never fail at anything–they just give up.” – Harvey Mackay
The next step is to empower and encourage your team to fail.
Most people fear failure but if you’re encourage your team to embrace failure as a result of trying new ideas, you will experience more good failures than bad. Empower your team to try out new ideas, this empowers them to drive the growth of your company. Make sure they know that failure is acceptable… as long as they learn something from it.
Identify your strengths and your weaknesses.
Succeeding all the time can lead to mediocrity. A good old fashioned fail can teach you what you’re good at and what you’re not. It also gives you insight as to what your customers really want. Make sure that every time you fail you learn something about what you’re good at and how to use it as well as what you’re not good at and how to avoid it.
March 12, 2012 By Leave a Comment
When the world is nearly drowning in clutter of too much advertising, your brand is the most important tool your company has when it comes to making sure you stand out in your customers mind. Just because you’re running a one-person-show doesn’t mean you can’t have a great brand. Here are some great ways to build the solo brand.
1. Be Visual – There are too many names in the world to compete with. Create a visual identity to help people recognize and remember you. Take the time to find the perfect image to help people remember at least one part of your name.
2. Make Sure It’s Tweetable – Netflix suffered when they found out that their spinoff brand ‘Qwikster’ was already taken as a Twitter handle but someone who insisted on tweeting about their drug use. A clever name isn’t enough anymore, you need to make sure it’s socially available or you’ll be giving yourself a branding handicap.
3. Have Some Fun – You should definitely be serious about what you do, but not so serious that you adopt a 0 fun policy. Fun brands are more memorable and easier to interact with. It doesn’t have to be all business all the time and creating a unique personality will help you differentiate from your competitors.
4. Say It Loud – Develop a brand that you can be proud of. Make sure it’s not just something to grab people’s attention, but something that identifies who you are, what you do and why it matters.
5. Brand Everything Consistently - Use the same branding guidelines on anything that represents you. Your logo, your tagline, your color scheme and even the fonts you use should be the same on anything that has your name associated with it.
February 28, 2012 By Leave a Comment
Even the most productive and focussed people will occasionally find them selves staring at a blank wall. It might just be “one of those days”, but if it starts to happen repeatedly you might have to consider that there’s a bigger problem.
You’ve Lost Your Focus
You don’t really feel like doing anything and you can’t keep track of what you actually convince yourself to do. You start asking ‘Why?’ without ever really looking for an answer. Well don’t worry, it happens. Luckily there are a few things you can do to re-focus your mind and your attitude.
1. Set Your Priorities Straight
When you feel like you have too much to do, you end up not wanting to do anything. Set your priorities so you have a clear vision of what needs to get done now. This way your to-do list is a little smaller and more focussed. Also keep a list of things you will want to be thinking about or working on in the future. This way you will be aware of your future endeavors and also have a list of things to work on when you just don’t feel like focusing on the tasked at hand. This way your focused on something that needs to be done rather than nothing.
2. Seek Silence
If you’re becoming more easily distracted, get rid of the distractions. Invest in a pair of headphones that block out all the noise. Keep your cell phone out of sight and only open your e-mail 1-3 times a day. If none of that helps, leave your phone at home and work from a remote location that you are unfamiliar with and try facing a wall.
3. Relax A Bit
When you’re relaxed you will be able to look at the big picture instead of just looking forward. You will be able to observe what’s working and what’s not which will give you the direction and focus to get more done. Being relaxed also helps you get in “the zone”. You are calm enough to organize your thoughts and goals and then strategically approach all of them.
January 31, 2012 By Leave a Comment
January 24, 2012 By Leave a Comment
Is your sales team plotting ways to take out your marketing team?
Don’t worry, it’s a classic battle and you might be surprised to hear that your sales people are probably on the right track. That being said, it’s your job to make sure they are getting along. The fate of your business depends on it. Here are a few instigators of this time old battle. Once you identify them, you can solve the problem and prevent any further friction between the two departments.
1. Marketitus Superioritus – Marketers tend to feel and act superior to the sales team. This usually comes down to education. Most marketers have gone through business school and most sales people haven’t. What the marketers don’t know is that you don’t learn how to successfully sell in school, you learn through experience. An easy fix for this problem is to make sure every marketer you hire has experience in sales.
2. Marketers Tend To Deem The Sales Force Unnecessary – They’ve learned that “great marketing” should sell the product for you. What they don’t know is that even “perfect marketing” doesn’t always push the customer to make the final purchasing decision. The quick fix is to let the marketers know that they are there to support the sales team, not replace it.
3. “Selling Can’t Be That Hard” – On the contrary, selling is one of the most valuable skills a person can have in business and one of the hardest to gain. Keep in mind, customers can easily ignore your marketing efforts but it’s incredibly difficult to ignore direct sales. Fix the problem by challenging your marketers to make some sales calls.
December 20, 2011 By Leave a Comment
Some businesses have had incredible success this year and others have not. I found a good infographic that looks back on some of the epic fails in retail. Sometimes it’s just as important to know what not to do as it is to know what to do. Did any of these fails surprise you? Share in the comment box below or with me on Facebook and Twitter.