Friday, June 28, 2013

Clearing the Clutter

This may be what your office looks like.....
It could be what your office feels like.

Now transfer that into your head - is this what it looks like in there?
Do you have a goldfish running around in there on one of the screens while your other screen is open and featuring goodness knows what because you can't quite put your finger on it?
Are there chairs and clothes and coffee cups all over?

Do you need to de-clutter what is going on in there and find some space?

This is an activity I engage in quite regularly with my clients.  You can call this action any number of things:
Clearing Head Trash

How does this work?

  1. Clients are open to sharing what is in their head
  2. We chart out their thoughts
  3. We review and focus them into segments or buckets
  4. We take time to determine what can be eliminated or reserved for future action

It helps - once they start to have some clarity around all the things swimming between their ears, they can build a manageable plan of attack.

Want to try it? Let me know - happy to help, of course!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

A Crisply Raving Fan!

I have been searching for cloud-based tools to help me grow my business.  I have found some great tools in my search and share them with clients, colleagues & friends because they work, are intuitive and quite user-friendly.

Those who know me, know I love my Apple products - iPhone, iPad and desktop included!  Some silly people out there have products that are not Mac-friendly, helping me find new ways to do things with  my tools & at the same time become more efficient.

Over the weekend I discovered Crisply - a timesheet to help me track not only time with clients or working on client projects, but also my own projects. I can honestly say I tried a few different tools and actually attempted to have my Crisply account closed on Monday morning because I felt it did not suit my needs.

No sooner had I provided the email than the CEO Ross Kudwitt sent me an email asking if I had time for a chat about Crisply.  In less than 30 minutes, I was on a conference call with his whole team.  It was the coolest service experience ever.

They asked a ton of questions and I shared my ideas and concerns. They provided me with feedback and tips.....and lo and behold, I am becoming proficient at Crisply and see how it can save me time as well as help me become better focused so that I can spend my time working at what I do best.

Cool piece about this tool is that it will learn from my input - I can't wait to see that in action.  Talk about being committed to service and taking care of the user!  This team RULES!!!

I am now looking forward to what else they will develop - you never know where Crisply could take this innovative, customer-oriented, open-minded talented team.

PS - I know I am not an expert in anything tech, am a self-professed wannabe geek.....but I do recognize extraordinary when I experience it!

Friday, June 21, 2013

the 2nd half

Say what you want, this guy is not waiting for the 2nd half to begin before he gets fired up and ready to go.  He knows his game.  He knows the plays.  He knows his competition.  He knows who is on his team and how to play & win with the team he has.  He has no excuses.  He is all game.

How about you?
June is over, July is on it's way.
Are you fired up?  Do you have a plan and know where you are going?
Do you know your game?  What you do well? What you need to delegate?
Do you know your plays? Have you eliminated what does not work?
Have you evaluated your competition? Gotten to know them?  What they do well? What they do better than you do? What they need you to help them with?
Does your team understand the mission & vision?  Is the team ready to win?  Do they have the tools and training and stamina to get to the end of the year? To play the next half without a rest?
Have you eliminated all the excuses? Have you removed all obstacles? Have you created an environment where decision-making on the fly is rewarded and recognized?
Are you all game?

Tuesday, June 18, 2013


It has come to be time to develop a team.  You have decided you can no longer do all of this yourself.
In a small business, where the owner is used to doing everything from client acquisition to dusting to paying the bills and keeping track of social networks, this can be a difficult change to handle.
How do you get there?
Try these few things before you get started:

  1. list everything that you do not like to do when it comes to your business
  2. list everything you are not good at but do anyway for your business
  3. now cross-reference.....these are the items that you may need to delegate to someone who is good at them, and even better, likes to do them
The key is finding the right person.  Start looking in your own network.  Chances are if there is someone already delegating this type of work, then they may know someone who can help you too.

When You Start....
  1. Start slow and person at a time.
  2. Get into a rhythm of meetings with clear agendas.
  3. Ensure roles are described including how each links together.
  4. Let them at it.......and follow up.
All the best to you and your emerging team.  
Congratulations on having the courage to make this change!

Friday, June 14, 2013

How Did I Get Here?

It's here, my new website has been operational for 6 months.  A milestone.
Now, it is time to start driving some traction through LinkedIn and the Company pages - visit me here and follow what's going on .

With 6 months under my belt with the new business name I have found focus and more ease around priorities.  And business continues to shift in new directions.  Funny enough, it is going more in the direction I want it to, than straying in odd 'shiny-object' directions.

How did I get here?  Here are some things that have happened:

  1. I have become more focused by working more on listening to what my clients needs are.
  2. I have focused on saying NO and aligning with my competencies (the main reason I started this business)
  3. I am reading, A LOT!
  4. I am searching for new tools & sharing them with my clients and others to help them.
  5. I am focused on business...working ON it as well as IN it.  
  6. I have planned time for projects - giving myself 1 appointment-free week per month to maintain and develop my business as well as work on client projects.
  7. I de-clutter my head - thanks to Dr. Henry Cloud, I brain-dump regularly so that I can see everything in front of me, enabling me to 'bucket' and focus.
  8. I have outsourced some work - if my time is better spent elsewhere, that is where I spend it
  9. I take time off - enjoy stay-cation weekends with my family & friends
  10. I take time for me - running or walking or reading (other than business-related books)
What have you done in the last 6 months that has caused some serious changes to you, your business or how you do business?

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

NXT Level Is Back

On June 25th along with my co-host Nadia Shousher, we will present NXT Level Mastermind.
Eventbrite - NXTLevel MastermindThis is an opportunity for you to experience what it would be like to be in a Mastermind Team and see how this dynamic and unique facilitated brainstorming and problem-solving session can help you move yourself and/or your business forward.
There is even a promo code for you to use WBMM1 - pretty simple.

So, I have a story to tell and a few questions to ask.

We attempted to host this event in March.  While lots of people showed interest, only 3 stepped up and made the commitment to attend.  A few people even said they would attend and then never signed up.  Many people ask how a group like this works, and it is difficult to explain, because with each group I run, they all have a unique dynamic and develop a personality all their own.  It is one of those events you must experience to really understand.

In June, we will have space for 40 people.  We will have 8 tables of 5 business owners/leaders that will work together in this facilitated session on one question or challenge that their business is facing.  As you hosts, Nadia and I will put you together with other business owners/leaders that don't compete in your arena.

Is it not worth the relatively few dollars ($50 for 1/2 day or $25 with the promo code above) it would cost to resolve that burning issue?

With the added bonus of meeting other like-minded and very interesting, experienced business owners or leaders that could become part of your network?

It is a 1/2 day session - we promise to have you out before lunch so that you can get on with your day.  I can guarantee you that it will be hard to leave and not keep going on the challenges and discussions that will arise.

This is for YOU!  When do you take time to focus ON your business?  When do you discuss the challenges and opportunities you face in your business with other owners or leaders? By connecting you with different industries and organizations, new ideas will grow, innovative solutions will arise & if anything at all, you will see that you have a kinship with your group that creates new bonds and starts a relationship that could lead virtually anywhere.

So it is your turn.  Are you ready to commit time to your business?  Are you ready to get serious about moving forward?  The year is almost 1/2 way past us.....are you going to stay ahead of it or just continue to play catch up?  See you on the 25th, I hope!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013


It has been a long 6 weeks - weeks that were filled with preparation for a number of great events and opportunities.  I am surprised at what they have taken out of me....or more importantly, what I was able to put in and learn.

Starting from May 1st up until June 3rd I focused on executing 3 major events - 2 in which I was the host, 1 in which I was a participant.  Sounds like nothing, you would think.  Well, here are some key learnings:

  • expect the unexpected - a plan is critical including timelines, people accountability and dress rehearsals
  • overpreparation is needed - this helps to keep everyone on track and enable decision-making without having to guess
  • people will surprise you - in more ways than one....some will be ready with generous hearts, hands and wallets while others will assume you will take care of anything and everything
  • go with the flow - not allowing others to hijack your spirit and energy is a clear message - stuff is going to happen, let it and work with it
  • be ready for criticism - you do things your way, others will do things their way - that is okay.
  • be grateful - if offered help, take it...reward generosity with a 'yes, please & thanks'.
  • enjoy the moments - take time to stop and watch, observe and will be amazed at what you see happening around you
  • what they don't know, won't hurt - if something did not go exactly as planned, you are the only one who knows this....don't worry.
And I was exhausted.  It took my son to tell me how long I have been operating on a new level without stopping. He gave me permission to pause.  Now that I am rested, I find that I can still operate at that new level while at the same time making time for me.