Posts Tagged ‘blueprint for success’
Looking back over 2012, what were your highlights? Being a glass half full and optimistic person, I prefer to focus on the positives. Yes, I learn from the negatives as well as the positives. Since it is a known fact that we always receive more of whatever we give our time, energy and focus, I prefer to concentrate on the positive.
What were the personal highlights of 2012? What did you learn about yourself?
2012 was an eventful year for me. My first book, Emotional Ice Water was published. The comments about how much it helped people to get out of their own way and start truly living life to the fullest warmed my heart. One man very close to me said, “It was better than I thought it would be; that could be a compliment. I’ve decided to take it as a left-handed compliment.
Even though it was an entire year ahead of schedule, I became President of the Castle Pines Rotary club in July. With the unexpected turmoil which caused my early ascension, it has been a bumpy road but we are making progress. I jumped in with both feet up to the top of the curls and relate 100% to the values and mission of Rotary.
A few unexpected financial events have made a wonderful and truly appreciated upswing in income toward the end of 2012. That is never a bad turn of events. Nice way to end the year.
Which relationships meant the most to you in 2012?
Once again, the deepening friendships with Rotarians have astounded and pleased me.
In fact, the genuine outpouring of caring from friends and my sons has truly been heartwarming. I can’t say enough loving words about my sons. Wow, am I fortunate. I’ve laughed that I’m not certain if the fine men they have become is because of me or in spite of me, but I’m grateful nonetheless.
What was one of the biggest challenges you faced this year and how did you handle it?
For me as for many Americans, the challenge was endeavoring to keep the income above the outgo. There are conflicting points of view as to whether the economy is getting better or if the Band-Aid on America’s debt will pull loose revealing a deep gash.
What did you do for fun in 2012? What was one of your fondest memories?
One of the highlights of my year is always related to my grandsons. Those adorable little guys have Gamma wrapped securely around their little hands. For instance at 5 am on Christmas morning both little guys pounce on the bed and say, “Up Gamma, you’re missing Christmas.” Sleepy-eyed but smiling, we all head upstairs to the Christmas tree.
Even though the questions and answers could continue, the importance is reflecting on 2012 in a positive way and seeking the wisdom to commit to making 2013 even better than 2012. Not just commit, but follow through.
When we build positives on positives, the world becomes a happier and more fulfilling place.
What is your competitive advantage? Why would people choose to do business with you instead of your competition? We are in the midst of a challenging economy in United States as well as many other countries right now. Competitive advantage is even more important now than at any other point in my lifetime, perhaps yours as well.
If you are an investor, you may be thinking, “How does this relate to me? This is my market. There are more sellers than buyers right now.” True. If you are the seller, how do you attract that ideal buyer or investor?
Fine tune your competitive advantage
What is the value, quality or delivery you offer which is superior? An investor wants to know what you have to offer now; they will build on their additional advantages. Unless you have something intriguing to offer, they are on to the next opportunity.
So what if they don’t invest in your business? Developing a stronger competitive advantage will make your business more profitable in the interim.
Do you believe you have an excellent product or service? If not, improve it until it is excellent.
How to improve your competitive advantage
Interview your current customers.
- What do they like about your company or product?
- What do they NOT like? (Not a fun question but very informative.)
- What would they like to have but do not have at this time?
Interview your competitor’s customers with the same 3 questions.
Interview prospective customers. You will be amazed at how powerful it is to ask them what they want rather than endeavor to sell them something.
Now do something with this valuable feedback. No, not stuff it in a folder to be reviewed at some distant point in the future.
Research how other companies have overcome these “dislike” issues. You are probably not the only one to ever face these challenges.
- Contact your mentors or icons in the industry.
- Search for information. Use the internet as well as current print publications.
- Visit some of your competitors or purchase a product from them.
- Do a blind test and purchase from your own company.
Take a vendor to lunch. Ask their experience with how other companies handle similar situations you deal with in your day to day operations.
Ask you CPA. They work with other companies. Look outside your industry for ideas
Form a plan to improve your competitive advantage
- Find a way to build on your current advantages. Emphasize them in your marketing
- Compile all of your research information into an organized format. Brainstorm. Use the “How can I” approach rather than “That won’t work.” A positive attitude does wonders.
- Make a list of actions to be taken. Prioritize the list and add a timeframe to each.
- Take action. Start the plan immediately
Competitive advantage is even more important now. Adopt the attitude of Amazon in 2008. The CEO called the key staff together and said “There’s a big recession coming. Let’s miss it.”
Whether you are a seller, buyer, investor or customer, competitive advantage is paramount. Take action to make your advantage outstanding in the marketplace. Your employees, customers and bank account will thank you.
For more information on competitive advantage, stay tuned to www.Elaine4Success.com. Also inquire about hiring Elaine Love for your next sales training, executive meeting or personal growth presentation coaching. Go to www.Elaine4Success.com/Contact or www.MeetElaineLove.com.
When your attitude shifts, your life follows suit. Everyone reaches that magic “decision time.” You know the time. You look at your life or a situation and determine “that’s enough; something is going to change NOW.”
A firm decision results in an attitude shift. Your attitude will get you everywhere. The relief associated with a major attitude shift is phenomenal. The trauma and stress are all previous to the decision. Once the decision is made, the attitude turns positive and progressive. The stress comes from the “should I” or “shouldn’t I” dilemma. Stop shoulding all over yourself and get with the program.
So many people spend so much time getting ready to get ready that they never actually make a decision. What is it in your life right now that is holding you back from making a progressive decision, a progressive attitude? Wealth builders and self-made millionaires all make decisions.
Self-made millionaires possess decision oriented habits and positive attitudes. Wealth builders know that a positive attitude will get you everywhere. It starts with a dream and builds to a goal. A plan forms designing the process to reach the goal. Absolute laser focus is applied to the implementation of the plan. Frequent benchmarks or checkpoints are established to insure the plan is on course. Will there be adjustments? Yes. Even a jet airplane does not go from San Francisco to New York without a few minor tweaks and turns.
The entire process starts with a firm decision and an attitude shift.
If your life or plan is off target, check your attitude. Queasy attitude probably means there is a decision in limbo. Clear the roadblock by determining what decision you have procrastinated about making. Make the decision. Feel the relief and the positive attitude shift.
You can never make forward progress and remain sitting on the fence. Make the decision. Establish a positive attitude. Set the goal and the plan to achieve it. Establish the course correction checkpoints and prepare to celebrate victory.
For more positive attitude tips and techniques, join me at http://www.elaine4success.com/
Is your net worth sinking from the black into the red? Is your wallet shrinking right along with your confidence while you eat out of tension and your waistline goes the other direction? What you want is a tensionectomy? I’ll let you in on a little secret. Shhhh. Having the right non-conflict of interest information at the right time and knowing what action to take plumps your wallet and strengthens your self confidence.
Wealth creation strategies require passion, perseverance and a commitment toward permanent improvement. Get rich quick schemes are for the foolish, lazy and perhaps unethical. Serious wealth creation strategies require a mindset change. If your current mindset would create a path toward wealth, you would already be rich.
Millions of people invest hundreds of thousands in college, various schools and classes every year. Americans, and now the world need solid, accurate financial information. How much are you willing to invest in yourself to receive honest, non-conflict of interest education about how to earn more money and make better choices with the money you do have?
The alarm bells are ringing all over the world now. The euro is screaming in terror as its debt level rises to flood stage and it is swimming in a sea of red ink. The US Dollar has been drowning in its own red ink for months now and the massive bailouts are causing it to go down for the third time. Pouring in more debt, red ink, to an already overflowing debt level only intensifies the problem.
Now since we are doing such a terrible job of managing our own economy, we have decided to expand this disastrous flood stage economic model to Europe, Portugal, China and any other poor soul who decides to listen. Increasing debt far beyond what can ever be repaid makes no sense.
Hello, bankruptcy. When your debts far exceed your current and future income, you are bankrupt. Running the printing presses to flood the market with deflated dollars is like tying a big rock to your wallet and expecting it to float to the surface. What are we doing to ourselves? Even worse, what are we doing to future generations?
Wealth creation strategies require making wise decisions with current money and becoming wealth builders for the future.
- Stop buying things you can not afford with money you do not have to impress people who do not care.
- Start taking your financial education from people who want to educate you rather than sell you the latest and greatest “get rich quick” scheme. Real wealth does not happen overnight. It is a mindset of wise decisions at the right time backed by action.
- Stop jumping on every fad that floats through the media. Pet rocks are long gone.
The US economy and the world economy are changing rapidly. If you go with the flow of the masses, you will go down with the masses. By the time information floats down through the spin artists from the top of Wall Street through the media and talking heads down to main street, it is far too late to act on it. Come learn the facts.
Join me at http://www.elaine4success.com/ and get honest non-conflict of interest information.
You are in the business of creating WOW. Be so good that they can not ignore you. Be so good that the only question of doubt is who is second. These are characteristics of an Entrepreneur.
Create your WOW with a gold dust in the air attitude and back it with solid goal directed action. WOW comes from a positive attitude. Attracting the top people to you stems from being a person others like to be around. No one enjoys spending time with grumpy, complaining people. It does not mean you have to turn cartwheels, most of us do not do that on a regular basis, but it does mean that you display a pleasing personality, zest for life and spirit of giving value.
Look at the WOW as W O VV – wealth of value value. The key to creating WOW is doubling the value received by everyone you encounter. When you interact with others in a spirit of giving value to them far in excess of the monetary exchange, you create a win win situation. Double the value and you double the win.
Look at life and business in the spirit of looking in the mirror to see what you can give of yourself rather than looking through a window to see what the outside world can give to you. Rotary Clubs International has a motto of service before self. That gold dust in the air attitude epitomizes the positive outlook on life and the mission of giving value to others. A person who is more concerned about giving value and excellent customer service than they are about their individual income in each interaction, will in fact receive more. Greed is short term. Value is long term.
Look at a W as two Vs put together. Create a gold dust in the air attitude by expecting good things to appear, acting as if the good will appear and serving others by projecting the attitude of giving value to them.
Creating WOW is as simple as focusing on the value you give to others. The top companies who thrive for the long term are always the top customer service companies. It always costs less to retain a customer than to attract a new customer. Customers stay where they are appreciated and receiving value.
Project a gold dust in the air attitude and others will feel good about being around you, customers will choose to do business with you and you will feel better about yourself and your business. It really is as simple as having a gold dust in the air attitude and backing it with positive action. That positive action starts with giving value and follows through with giving excellent customer service.
1. Gold dust in the air attitude
2. Give value which exceeds expectation and price
3. Give excellent customer service
Develop a gold dust in the air attitude and back it with positive action.
For more tips and specific techniques on developing a gold dust in the air attitude and a list of the top customer service companies, join me at www.elaine4success.net
Would you order a truck load of building materials, a backhoe to dig the foundation, and no blueprint for the structure? Of course not, that would be foolhardy. No one in their right mind would spend thousands on materials and equipment without a specific blueprint for success. Most people spend months designing the perfect structure. Building departments and homeowner associations need to approve the plans as well. The blueprint details exactly what materials are needed and exactly how they will be assembled. The larger or more complicated the structure, the more elaborate the blueprints.
Unfortunately it is quite common for people to start a business without any blueprint for success whatsoever. The more common delusion follows a pattern of:
- Buy a business on emotion. Most people buy on emotion rather than logic. Accountants and engineers are more likely to buy on logic and analytics; however, it is generally accepted that most people purchase on emotion. Frank Rumbauskas of “Sales Tips and Advice” declares that “People buy on emotion and justify with logic.” The fact that emotions overrule logic explains why experienced sales people sell based on benefits rather than selling based on features. “Don’t tell me what it does. Tell me what it will do for me.”
- Now that I have a company, what do I do with it? It is like the dog chasing cars. It seems like fun at the time but they have absolutely no idea what to do with it if they ever caught it.
My suggestion is set your goals. What income do you desire to make? Set a specific blueprint for success to map out the road from where you are to your desired goal.
- One of the major elements of your blueprint for success will be your marketing plan. What funds do you have available for your marketing budget? What marketing skills do you possess? What marketing skills do you need to learn? Marketing either requires time or money. A small marketing budget means you had better plan on spending much more time. Which do you have more of, time or money? A larger marketing budget means that you can advertise in more expensive but less time consuming venues.
Social network marketing, web 2.0, is quite inexpensive financially but extremely time consuming. Google pay per click requires far less time once it is all set up and rolling; however, it is one of the most expensive forms of marketing.
- Once your business has been purchased, your exact path to success determined, your marketing established, and your leads flowing, you need to follow up with those leads. Until you are consistently making 10,000 per month, I recommend following up with every leads. Personally, I like to talk to my people so I still call every lead possible within the time frame available for prospecting. Each lead also receives both a personal email and a series of autoresponders. Any lead, potential business partner, who attends a business presentation also receives another follow up call and email. The serious individuals are then taken to a 3 way call for third party validation; the 3 way also assures the new individual that they will not have to answer questions when they get started. The removal of the fear of answering questions eases many nervous minds and sweaty palms.
The blueprint for success is simply a step by step focused plan to take you from initial idea all the way through to money in your bank account. For more specific tips and techniques or for assistance in designing and finalizing your personal blueprint for success, join me at http://www.elaine4success.com/.
Making money from home requires a committed entrepreneurial mindset. The characteristics of the entrepreneurial mindset are as different as the behavior of a rhinoceros and a cow. The rhinoceros charges through the jungle breaking through shrubbery barriers on a direct mission toward the goal. The cow stands in the field eating grass and waiting for hay to be brought to them when the grass is unavailable. A rhino will go after the food rather than sitting around passively waiting for it to come to them.
Compare the rhinoceros mindset to the entrepreneurial mindset. The rhinoceros goes after the goal as does the entrepreneur. The cow performs the basic duties required of it at the will and direction of someone else and expects the hay or grass to be presented to them. The employee performs the duties required of them by the boss and expects the pay check to be delivered to them.
The entrepreneurial mindset has an overwhelming desire to create their own duties on their own time schedule and reap the significantly higher rewards of that extra individual effort. By the same token, the entrepreneurial mindset accepts the responsibility of their decisions, good or bad. The employee expects to receive the pay check on a regular basis regardless of the consequences of each individual decision; after all, it was not entirely their decision, it was either the decision of the boss or with the approval of the boss.
The rhino and the entrepreneur effect to receive the rewards of their efforts and the consequences of their actions. Making money working from home requires the entrepreneurial mindset. You are your own boss when you are an entrepreneur.
Another aspect of the entrepreneurial mindset is the constant drive to do better, do more and be more creative. In order to be making money working from home, you absolutely must focus your mind on the task at hand. Be creating, be willing to take a risk on a new marketing campaign or new marketing method, and be decisive. No boss will be making the decision for you, nor do you want them to make decisions for you. Look carefully at each option and make a decision. Analysis paralysis will not be tolerated. Time becomes an important commodity; time must be focused and used wisely, not wasted. Wise time management is critical to making money working from home.
If you desire to be making money working from home, develop your entrepreneurial mindset and put it into action with focused time and effort. The rewards will thrill you.
For more in depth tips and techniques for making money working from home, join me at http://www.elaine4success.com/.
In this world of few guarantees, rest assured that a successful entrepreneur is never ever lazy. The entrepreneurial mindset seems to remain in motion. One of the most difficult tasks for a successful entrepreneur is to turn off the flow of creative ideas. There is always one more thing they want to do, one more advertising campaign to launch, and one more marketing strategy to explore. If you were ever in their bedroom you would find a notepad on the night stand for those flashes of brilliance which awaken them in the middle of the night.
Another of the characteristics of successful entrepreneurs is their constant quest to do just a little better or do just a little more. They are always seeking perfection. This tendency to constantly tweak a logo or a brochure or even an office procedure can drive those around them to reach for the chocolate or the tenth cup of coffee. Entrepreneurs may not always be easy to live with because of this constant drive. We have even been called such names as “workaholic.” Imagine that.
Yes, we immerse ourselves so fully in the task at hand that we forget to bring home the milk; time just flies by and the focus is on the project of the moment. Don’t be frustrated with the entrepreneurial mindset; it is simply one of the characteristics of a successful entrepreneur.
Examine the entrepreneurial mindset and you will find a checkerboard. Each task has its own individual square; however there is also the larger puzzle of making each square function to lead to the ultimate goal of becoming a king. Strategic individual moves, awareness of the moves around them, and target focus on the ultimate goal are all working simultaneously.
The entrepreneurial mindset is complicated but invigorated at all times. This moving, thriving energetic mind is one of the characteristics of successful entrepreneurs.
Another characteristic will be the ready smile and the excitement for life. It is not uncommon to find another characteristic of successful entrepreneurs to be rising early and retiring to bed late. It is that “one more thing to do” thought pattern.
So if you call your successful entrepreneur and ask him to stop at the store on his way home from the office and he forgets to do so, just smile. It is just one of the characteristics of a successful entrepreneur. Bring them a cool beverage, a warm smile and forgiveness for the oversight.
“When you dare to dream, dare to follow that dream; dare to suffer through the pain, sacrifice, self-doubts and friction from the world.”
— Laura Schlessinger, talk-show host
What is it worth to you to have a reliable blueprint for success? Think it is complicated? Actually it is quite simple.
- Find your passion
- Convert that passion into the ideal business for you
- Write out very specific, SMART, goals
- Write a detailed business plan which takes you from your starting point to your victory line.
- Take focused goal directed action toward your ultimate target
- Constantly check your progress and make course adjustments on steps 3, 4, and 5 as needed.
- Repeat until successful
Your blueprint for success is quite simple and logical; the problem is that it is not easy.
Your mind wanders to family activities, your feet wander out to the kitchen or the snack bar, and the lure of the internet tempts you to search for this or that rather than concentrate on work.
You flounder around like a fish out of water not knowing your true passion. You spend endless hours, months and years working at something you do not like. Why are you wasting your precious time? Do you think you have no choice because you must make a living? Are you paralyzed by fear of making a change? Are you stuck in analysis paralysis?
Look deep into your soul and be objective. If you keep doing what you have been doing where will you be five years from now? In order to have a different result, you must do something differently.
Your blueprint for success in business is the same as your blueprint for success in your physical fitness or your weight. You do not become physically fit by sitting on the couch watching an exercise program or reading an exercise book. You become fit by repeatedly performing specific exercises designed for your fitness goals. You release weight (don’t want to lose it because you might find it again) by carefully planning the right foods to pass from your hand to your open mouth and then consuming only those foods.
Finding your passion is the essential first step to the process. What activities inspire you? What are you doing when you feel most energized? What are you doing when you feel the happiest? There are specific exercises you can perform to locate your passion. These are a start in the right direction.
The next step is converting that passion into the ideal business for you. Is it really possible? Yes. That conversion is more personalized. Locating the perfect business for your passion encompasses the passion, the initial business investment budget, the time available to work the business, the ultimate goal and the ongoing budget. Send me a comment in the “contact Elaine” section of http://www.elaine4success.com/ so that I may assist you. Subsequent articles will cover steps 3 through 6.
Success starts in my mind. Until you see yourself as successful, you may have a temporary flash but you will never achieve long term results.
Compare your entrepreneurial success to weight loss. Most of us can relate to that yo-yo battle. If you see yourself with double or triple chins, excess hanging over your belt, or having to shop in the “plus size” section, you will have an uphill battle to lose weight. You may go on a great diet and lose a few pounds, but unless you change your mental image of yourself, you will gain it all back and more.
Form a mental image of yourself as successful. Know exactly how success will look to you. Does it mean a specific car, a certain size home in a specific neighborhood, a minimum amount of money in your retirement account, the ability for your children to attend any university they choose, travel or the freedom to give generously to your church or charity? Know exactly how success will look to you. Unless your target is crystal clear in my mind, how can you possibly know when you achieve it?
Write a detailed description of your ideal day, ideal week and ideal month. When you clarify in your mind the long term activities of entrepreneurial success and the ideal results of those activities, your target gains focus.
Would you go for a walk alone in unfamiliar woods without a trail to follow, a map, a compass or a specific destination? That is a clear recipe for getting lost. Even if your cell phone might work in the forest, which it probably will not capture a signal; you would not have any idea how to tell the rescue party where to locate you. Expecting entrepreneurial success without a clear image in your mind of exactly what the desired outcome looks like is a train wreck waiting to happen.
The principles are universal. Decide exactly what success looks like to you. Picture it clearly in your mind in living color. Invoke all 5 senses in your image. Repeat the image frequently, especially the first thing in the morning and the last thing before going to sleep at night. Your subconscious mind is most easily programmed just emerging from an alpha state (sleep) or entering an alpha state.
Just as the directions on the shampoo bottle, perform and repeat. Repeating your image of entrepreneurial success over and over in my mind reinforces the goal and keeps you focused.
For more specific guidance on creating the success you desire and deserve, join me at www.Elaine4Success.com