Archive for January, 2011
You are so close to success. The distance could be a short as six inches. You may be so very close to achieving everything of your fondest dreams. So close and yet so far away.
That magic six inches is your mindset. Yes, I am speaking about the diameter of your head. Your thoughts control your feelings. Your feelings control your words and your words control your actions. Could it really be that simple? Yes. Change your mindset and you change your results. Adopt a millionaire mindset and maintain that mindset; I guarantee you will continue to get closer and closer to your goal.
You ever think some people are just lucky? All the good things just seem to gravitate to them. Did it ever occur to you that they expect good things to happen and therefore good things do happen to them? Have you ever noticed that once the good events start flowing into someone’s life that more and more good events follow closely behind? It is really quite simple.
Look at your own life, when something good happens to you, how do you react? If you are like most people, you smile, feel happier and are more optimistic. The more you project a happy attitude, the more people are attracted to you. The more good happy people who are attracted to you, the more good events flow into your life extending and enhancing that positive attitude. A millionaire mindset means you expect good things in your life. The only difference between Donald Trump and the homeless person on the street are a couple of skills and a couple of good decisions. Start with the first decision of choosing a positive mindset.
It is like a Colorado snowball; I’m a Colorado lady so I am quite familiar with Colorado snow, the more you pack the snow on the ball and keep rolling, the bigger the snowball. Anyone who has ever made a snowman as a child knows the snowball principle. Your emotions work on the same principle. Henry Ford said, “Whether you think you can or think you can’t, you are right.” When you feel good you are more likely to think you can and thus you actually can do more.
If you adopt the Debbie or David Downer attitude and choose to be a grump expecting misfortune at every turn, that is exactly what you are likely to find. What is the magic difference? Your attitude. Your mindset is the only difference. Who controls your mind? You do.
Back to that magic six inches. Your mind is totally in your control. You have the freedom to choose a millionaire mindset and continually get closer to your goal or a defeated attitude and continue to go farther from your goal.
What do you have to lose by making a simple decision to expect good events to flow into your life? You choose a happy positive outlook or a grumpy defeated attitude. You control the majority of your future through your attitude.
I remember someone asking me once if I was wealthy. At that moment in my life I probably did not have $100 to my name. I answered “yes, I am wealthy in the love of my sons, my friends and my health. I adopted a mental millionaire mindset even though the bank account did not reflect 7 digits at that time. I speak from experience. That positive attitude gradually brought me closer and closer to my goal.
You control the magic six inches. Those six inches determine your future.
Hire Elaine Love as the speaker for your next event. Hire Elaine Love as your personal coach and mentor. Success can be yours in any economy. Let me prove it to you. Go to www.Elaine4Success.com, www.ElaineSpeaks.com or www.ElaineSpeaks.net.
Taking responsibility may not always be fun or even close to your comfort zone. It can be a downright bitter pill to swallow. It is so much easier to blame someone else.
It is the bank’s fault that the check bounced and they even had the nerve to charge a $30 bounced check fee. Why couldn’t the bank officer have looked to see if the money was in another one of your accounts and transfer it or call and asked if a deposit was about to be made. Maybe they could just advance the money; they know you would make it good. Reality check! As much as all of those seem like a good idea to the customer, they are simply not feasible to the banker.
Maybe in the old west when the bank only had 20 depositors that might have worked. With all of the banking regulations and hundreds of depositors in modern banks, you have about as much chance of that level of personalization as a snowball in a microwave oven.
Fess up. You played the float, miscalculated the balance, or made a mistake and wrote the check from the wrong account. Sometimes the bank will refund the fee one time. Don’t count on it.
- Admit the error. Accept the responsibility.
- Call the bank. You can ask for mercy on the fee or bite the bullet and pay it.
- Determine what happened and design a system to prevent it from ever happening again.
- Implement the system.
Every business development coach and personal development coach will tell you that taking responsibility is a mark of maturity. Blaming someone else may be common and easy but it is not the mark of a leader and a professional. Bite the bullet, swallow your pride and admit your part in the problem.
Jim Rohn, noted business philosopher, said “You must take personal responsibility. You cannot change the circumstances, the seasons, or the wind, but you can change yourself. That is something you have charge of.”
When I owned Mountain Castles Property Management, there was a time when an expensive wall hanging disappeared from one of the homes I managed. I could have blamed the housekeeper, the head housekeeper or the maintenance crew for not catching the theft when they cleaned and inspected the property. Was it their job to notice details such as that and report them immediately? Yes. Bottom line is that as the owner, those individuals all worked for me. Whatever they did right or wrong rolled up the carpet straight into my desk. Did I like facing the owner with the problem? No. Did I like paying for the stolen wall covering? No. As the owner, the ultimate responsibility was mine.
Yes. I spoke to the housekeeper, head housekeeper and the maintenance employees.
In my work as a business development coach, situations frequently occur where it is easier to blame another person than to accept responsibility. You will not grow as a person or as an entrepreneur by blaming others.
Follow the simple formula listed above by admitting the error, accepting the responsibility, determining what happened, designing a system to prevent the reoccurrence of the problem, and implementing the system.
Simple? Right? It looks simple but it tugs at your emotions and at your bank balance. Josiah Charles Stamp said it best, “It is easy to dodge our responsibilities, but we cannot dodge the consequences of dodging our responsibilities.”
In my experience of working with a personal development coach and my work as a business development coach, the one common thread was clearly TAKE RESPONSIBILITY. You will shine brighter in the eyes of others for taking responsibility than for dodging it. Step up. Fess up. Pay up. You will live up to a standard which will be a legacy you can own with pride.
Hire Elaine Love as a speaker for your next business function. Hire Elaine Love as your personal business development coach. Enter your contact information at www.ElaineSpeaks.net or www.Elaine4Success.com
Step in to your power as a professional. Step in to your power as a female entrepreneur. As women, we have been taught for generations to be caring and giving; every person needs to care about others and give of their time, talents and energy. I support that attitude. Unfortunately, in the process of being a wife and mother, we are all too frequently on the bottom of our priority list. Even worse, we may not even be on the list at all. The only time I ever made it to the top of my priority list was when I was working from the bottom up.
In the pioneer days, the June Cleaver (Leave It to Beaver television show) days and even the 1950s the majority of women were homemakers rather than career professionals. Such is no longer the case. In this challenging economic time, most families have both spouses working in order to make financial end wave at each other.
In addition to that, there are an alarming number of single parents. According to the U.S. Census Bureau in November, 2009, there are approximately 13.7 million single parents in the United States today, and those parents are responsible for raising 21.8 million children. Approximately 84% of custodial parents are mothers. 79.5% of custodial single mothers are employed outside the home.
I relate to those statistics. I was the single mother of two sons, ages one and three. Despite the promises of child support by the court, none arrived. Some dads are responsible and some are not. Since my situation was 1972 in Wayne County Michigan, there were others far worse off than I who received the bulk of the court attention.
Developing a career with sufficient income to support three people, a baby sitter (their rates in order to hire a really good one feel like you have an additional dependant), and provide the extra activity fees can feel overwhelming. If most single mothers are like I was, we pay for special additional activities not only because we want the best for our children but also the salve the guilt we feel for working so many hours.
Even though we do not bump our heads against the glass income ceiling of past decades, female entrepreneurs and female employees still have to work at least as hard or harder than most men in order to compete for equal status and equal pay.
So how do you combat this juggling act and remain sane? Female entrepreneurs have to work smarter. Females have to tap into our efficiency, intuition and skills in delegating.
Efficiency is a plus for women. We are accustomed to multi-tasking. We have been doing it for years. How many men do you know who could prepare an excellent meal while holding the baby on one hip and answering homework questions for another child at the same time? Even Ward Cleaver or Father Knows Best (another TV show of the “women stay home” era) did not even profess to accomplish that feat.
Women are noted for their efficiency in managing complex schedules, completing technical paperwork and greeting guests at the same time in many office situations. Women are hired for those positions not only because it is nice to be greeted by an attractive person with a friendly personality but because the vary nature of females means we are highly capable of doing an excellent job.
Now before you go all “women’s lib” on me, relax. I attended college in the early 1960s, managed a large chain of Goodyear Tire dealerships in the mid 1960s and 1970s in Detroit, Michigan. Note I said managed, I did not say receptionist. My point is to emphasize the fact that female entrepreneurs are highly capable and need to step in to their power as an individual professional.
No Boo Hoo or Poor Me. I love the challenge and I love the opportunity to prove that we not only can juggle family responsibilities at the same time as we progress as a career professional but we can still hold our heads up high as ethical human beings at the same time. I admit to being psychologically unemployable. I am a female entrepreneur.
It is my firm conviction that women can be athletic, intelligent, professional and feminine at the same time. Yes, I know the old joke about that requiring 4 different women. Wrong. We can do it all in one woman if we so choose.
Hire Elaine Love to speak to your group and hire Elaine Love as your personal coach and mentor. Go to www.ElaineSpeaks.net and send me a note. Tell me what you need. Let me help you and your organization.
What can you do to make a positive impact on a life?
What kind of legacy will you leave to the world?
In a speech several months ago, Dave Garrison held up a card “Believe the Best” or “Assume the Worst.” This card sat on top of my roll top desk for months now.
The sayings have had an impact on many decisions in my daily life. The most poignant example relates to a frail petite red headed girl named Kim Brazelton. Kim was the single mother of an 11 year old daughter. Kim and her sister applied for housekeeping positions with Mt. Castles Property Management. They quickly established a reputation for excellent cleaning abilities and attention to detail. Even though these were probably the finest homes they had ever entered in their lives, they learned quickly how to care for the homes and please the owners, renters and the head housekeeper. Kim had an especially positive mental attitude. She was a very reliable lady.
Kim worked for me for several years and eventually rose to the status of head housekeeper. Her positive mental attitude at work shifted to a bit of a positive play attitude on her own time. Kim was a bit of a wild one during her “off duty” hours. She or her sister frequently entertained the staff with tales of risqué parties and wild four wheeling rides through the woods. It did not come as a surprise to any of us that Kim lived a bit over the edge of pay check to pay check. It seemed as if she either asked me for an advance on her pay check or was borrowing gas money or lunch from someone on the staff on a very regular basis
She called in one morning relating a tale of woe about her car not starting. Without a car, she could not drive the 40 miles from Craig, CO to Steamboat, CO. Her sister did not have a car because her husband drove their car to his work.
Purchasing another car was totally out of the question. Actually, paying to repair her current car would cost almost as much as purchasing another equal value clunker. At that point, 1993, we did not have President Obama’s “cash for clunkers” program.
Walking 40 miles each way was absolutely out of the question; however, Steamboat Ski Resort did furnish a bus to travel from Craig to Steamboat twice a day. The times were not ideal and the pick up and drop off location was over a mile from Kim’s house. Kim needed the job and the income, so she made the effort to adjust to the bus schedule.
One winter day she asked if there was anything I could do to help her. I don’t know the number for Kim’s credit rating but suffice it to say that she probably did not qualify to purchase the down payment on a free lunch. Knowing she did not have any assets other than a few cleaning supplies, a few personal items and maybe a few household items, collateral was not a possibility. No credit rating and no collateral meant she more than qualified for the term “high risk.”
When the chips are down and the odds are against you, do you reach out to believe the best about someone or assume the worst? What is more important, protecting yourself or giving someone else a fresh start?
Against the advice of everyone around me, I went to the bank with Kim. I sold her my housekeeping S-10 pickup with camper shell. It was well maintained and not a gas guzzler. We agreed on a price of $1,500. I purchased a certificate of deposit for $1500 and placed it on deposit with the bank as well as leaving the title to the truck in my name and leaving it on deposit with the bank.
Kim agreed to make regular monthly payments to the bank. This would establish at least one credible payment record to begin the process of re-establishing her credit rating.
The bank promised to call me if a payment was late. Yes, there were numerous times when Kim’s payment was late. Throughout her struggle to complete the payments, I assured her that I believed in her. She maintained her positive attitude and her promise to complete the agreement. To her credit, she eventually made all of the payments. The title to the truck was transferred to her name.
Believe the best in someone and act as if they deserve a second chance and the odd greatly increase that they will delight both you and themselves with the result.
Kim came back to me years after I sold Mt. Castles and asked for another loan. Once again I helped her. She said she would pay it back in 3 months. She didn’t quite make the 3 month deadline, but she did repay the loan in full.
The tears in her eyes as she thanked me for believing in her when no one else did. . . . As the master change commercial says, “Priceless.”
Hire Elaine Love for inspiration and positive mental attitude boosts for your group. Hire Elaine Love as your personal coach and mentor. Contact Elaine Love at www.ElaineSpeaks.net or www.Elaine4Success.com.
Your business may start small; yes, it starts as small as the initial idea. Specific steps to start a small business exist. Discover those steps and be willing to take the action indicated and success knocks on your door. Even better, success flows into your bank account. Are you ready?
“Get rich in a niche.”
Define your market niche. So you ask, “How do I do that?”
When the idea first started nudging at the back of my mind to start Mountain Castles Property Management, several questions came to mind.
1. Where is an unfulfilled need?
2. What services are currently available?
3. What services would people pay for if they were available?
4. What is the biggest unsolved problem?
5. Who has the answers to these questions?
Even though question one was highly significant, the logical sequence to these answers started with question two. Start with what is known. Existing property management companies knew what services they currently provided. Let the interviews begin.
Harry Lambart held the prestigious position as CEO of Steamboat Premier Properties. “Harry, may I take you to lunch and ask a few questions?” An endless stream of questions flowed about marketing methods to obtain new properties to manage, marketing methods to attract new vacation or long term renters, employee compensation plans, fees for services currently offered, and the biggest challenge with the property management business.
Pages and pages of notes later the excitement continued to escalate. The steps to start a small business were in progress. Step one – idea creation. Focus the idea into a specific market segment, a niche. Step two – determine the potential for the idea to reach a large enough market to become profitable and a small enough market to establish a unique place in the marketplace. The best way to accomplish this feat is asking wise questions.
Research multiple sources. If your market is as vast as optimal, there will be varying points of view and a variety of services offered. Remember the object of locating an untapped lucrative niche market.
Research all aspects of your target market. In the example above, the interviews ranged from property management companies to real estate sales agencies on the services aspect. The interviews continued with second home owners, vacationers, and lift operators. Yes the seasonal workers who converge on the ski areas are potential renters. Frequently they are wearing their expensive season ski pass as a fine piece of jewelry; when the Aspen, Vail and Steamboat passes cost over $1,000 each, they do rival the cost of a fine piece of jewelry. Expensive hobbies require significant income.
Caution even though the primary goal of these athletic young individuals is to grace the ski slopes with their skis and snowboards, they frequently work two or three jobs and live a communal existence in order to afford their ski resort existence. You may rent to two or three and suddenly discover five or six actually living in the property.
How can you prevent this “roommate expansion” issue? Construct a specific contract and do reasonable property inspections. Research what is considered “reasonable” and follow the legal guidelines. Sometimes a simple late night drive by counting cars in the driveway or parked on the street provides excellent information.
This example is specific to property management; however the principle applies to all businesses.
1. Research the existing comparable businesses.
2. Research the legal parameters of your proposed business.
3. Interview a variety of business owners in your target market.
4. Interview potential clients for your proposed business
5. What organizations, associations or individuals would have additional valuable input for you?
This is a small section from my new book. The purpose of the book is to shorten the learning curve of new entrepreneurs and provide belief in themselves and their dream. The anticipated publication date will be May, 2011. Hire Elaine Love to speak to your group and rekindle the fire of productivity and profitability. Hire Elaine Love as your personal coach and mentor IF you decide to be all that you can be and are willing to take action. Contact Elaine at www.ElaineSpeaks.net or www.Elaine4Success.com.