Get Comfortable With Uncertainty

Get Comfortable With Uncertainty

Featured, Planning, Process
You hear it as an excuse all the time. People can be talking about the stock market, an election, their business or their family, they are worried about uncertainty. What most people won't acknowledge is that everything is uncertain. Unless you have a crystal ball that sees the future, you can never be certain. You may think you know what is going to happen, but you can't force or control all of the variables that happen. A driver could crash on the highway. The resulting traffic jam could delay an important shipment. A sudden failure at your internet provider could keep you from accessing the cloud software you need to complete your project. Successful people don't worry about uncertainty, they plan for it. Things go wrong all the time. What…
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You Manage Your Work, Do The Same WIth Your Life

You Manage Your Work, Do The Same WIth Your Life

Featured, Process
The word economics sends many people into a panic. Complex equations pop into their heads and they shudder. The word economics literally means household rules. While you may not want to learn the ins and outs of Econ 101, you should apply the same rules you use for business to your personal life. Here are some simple ways to start: Time Management: Use calendars and to do lists to manage household chores and appointments. Keep everything in a central location, rather than sticking post-it notes in random locations. For families, use a single system that everyone has access and delegate tasks to specific family members. Accounting and budgeting: Think of your life as Life, Inc. Keep track of expenses and categorize them. Budget how much you have for each category.…
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Don’t Let Amazon Ruin Your Business

Don’t Let Amazon Ruin Your Business

Featured, Planning, Process
Amazon has grown into more than a retailer. It is a marketplace for companies to sell their products. As a marketplace it has allowed companies to reach a larger market for their products and smaller retailers to expand their businesses online. However, there is a growing group of companies that are relying on Amazon as their sole distributor. This isn't just manufacturers, but small retailers who are selling their inventory and individuals who are selling merchandise as a side hustle. Relying on Amazon is a bad business model. Here's why. Amazon competes with its partners: Amazon is currently being investigated for taking the data from its partner's sales and using ti to compete against them. If Amazon decides to undercut you or downgrade your listings so they appear further down…
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How Much Do You Know About Your Prospects

How Much Do You Know About Your Prospects

Featured, Process
It's a rare day when a business owner doesn't get a sales call or solicitation email. The vast majority of these are generic cold calls or cold emails. Some may have your name in them but most don't even have that. Some make it abundantly clear that they don't know the first thing about your business. If you don't know about your potential client, how can you claim to be able to help them? When reaching out to potential clients, you need to show that you understand what they do and why they need your services. Research your prospects before reaching out to them. They want to know what is in it for them. You need to be specific about how your services can assist them in achieving their goals.…
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The People In The Process

The People In The Process

Featured, Process
To get the most out of your business, you need to have processes in place. Manuals that explain how to do each part of your business so that whoever does the job can deliver high quality results to your clients. The problem with that is that all people are not meant for all processes. You may have written down step by step how to do books, but you still don't want someone who isn't good with numbers performing the task. Putting the wrong person into a process will give you bad results. It's also bad for the person in the process. People twist themselves into knots to deliver if the process does not work with the skills and behavioral traits that they have. That causes stress, burnout and miserable employees…
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3 Work Skills That Are Useful At Home

3 Work Skills That Are Useful At Home

Featured, Process
Is your home life more chaotic than your work life? If so, you’re not alone, and some of the skills you use in your job can help. Planning and scheduling. Do you struggle to finish your personal to-do list? Block out time in your calendar for the things you need to get done (even mundane tasks like laundry and errands). You’ll feel more in control and more productive.Decision making. is about understanding how your actions affect other people. To improve, pay attention to how your colleagues react to things, and ask yourself (or them) what could be behind their behavior.Putting people first. At work, would you idly check your phone while a client speaks? Of course not — and our families deserve the same respect. Try to give people your full attention at…
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At Your Next Meeting, Use a Shot Clock

At Your Next Meeting, Use a Shot Clock

Featured, Process
Tired of being in meetings that drag on and on? It may sound unusual, but the answer is a shot clock, much like the ones used in professional basketball. Here’s how it works: Before a meeting, explain that you want to devote a certain amount of time to each agenda item. If you’re leading an annual budget review and have 10 investment proposals on the table, say, “We’re going to spend exactly 5 minutes discussing each topic. Speakers will have two minutes to present, followed by three minutes of discussion.” If different topics warrant different amounts of time, try to determine that in advance. Then set up the shot clock — a smartphone timer works nicely. It should buzz (loudly) when time runs out and keep buzzing until people stop talking. While it’s…
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Putting Things In The Right Order Matters

Putting Things In The Right Order Matters

Featured, Process
In school there are courses that have prerequisites. The reason is that the courses build on each other. To get the most out of the second course, you must have completed the first. To get the most done you have to consider the order in which you are doing it. Many projects have several parts where later parts rely on the first ones being completed. When planning an event, you don't advertise an event before a location is secured. More commonly, organizations take on projects that could succeed, but fail to fix problems first, which dooms the project. For example, a project is started before budget shortfalls are fixed. This makes the costs of the project, which would have been manageable, too much for the organization to bear. Make sure…
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Your Favorite Holiday Tradition

Your Favorite Holiday Tradition

Featured, Process
Think about your favorite holiday traditions. Whether it has to do with gift giving or what you have for dinner or who you spend the holidays with, that tradition evokes an emotional response. It brings up memories of past holidays and good feelings in general. A holiday tradition is comforting. What is a tradition, though? It's something you do every year in a specific way to achieve a specific feeling. In other words, it's an operational process. You do the same thing, feel the same way, and get the same results year after year. That's exactly why you should be creating processes for your business. The same feeling of comfort that you get from your holiday tradition is felt by your client when they get the same level of service,…
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How Clean Is Your Bathroom?

How Clean Is Your Bathroom?

Featured, Improvement, Process
The bathroom tends to be one of the most overlooked areas in a business. This also makes it one of the most telling places. Your bathroom tells a lot about how you do business. The bathroom represents the attention to detail. Is it clean? Is it pleasant to be in? What about the storeroom? The coat closet? These aren't areas that people think of as having to be presentable to customers, but it says a lot about your business if they are. If you are paying attention to all the little things, the big things are done better. If your filing system is impeccable, when a customer calls with a problem, you'll be able to find all the information they need quickly and effectively. If your customer feels secure that…
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