Take Inspiration from 3 Fortune 500 Men

!cid_06B63769-2E1B-442E-9F28-BBCBC94247AE@westellNote From Yoon:

I’ve been taking Richard Branson’s advice. While I don’t have a hammock, my favorite relaxed spot to work is on my front porch chaise lounge. 

This is where I usually take my coaching calls. I follow the sun, so I end up moving to the side porch, then to my back porch.  Being outdoors is definitely a more fun place to work! Thanks for the tip Richard! 

What about you? Share your best success tips you’ve learned and implemented below.

Blessings ~ 

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There is no such thing as a black and white path to success. The road to a successful future is bumpy along the way, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible to achieve great things. Sometimes the most unlikely advice is all it takes to catapult you towards greatness. Follow the unlikely advice of these Fortune 500 men, and you can take a step on the path towards your dreams.

Richard Branson: Virgin King

Sir Richard Branson in Vancouver

Photo by Shinsuke Ikegame via Flickr

Richard Branson has it all: a multibillion-dollar empire, his own private island and a great head of hair, but what’s his secret? Branson told Askmen.com that one of his secrets of success is to work from home whenever possible. A hammock is a much more fun place to work than a stuffy office desk, and working from home allows Branson to minimize distractions and focus on the task at hand.

Bill Gates: The Ruler of PC Land

Bill Gates

Photo by Choice Isy via Flickr

Bill Gates pretty much runs Silicon Valley these days, and he owes much of his leadership ability to his parents. They forced him to participate in activities that don’t come naturally to him. He tells CNN Money Magazine that one of the most important parts of his childhood was learning to stretch out of his comfort zone. He may not have been the best athlete, but he sure made some important memories trying.

Steve Wynn: Big Winner

Steve Wynn at the Milken Institute Summit-London

Photo by MilkenInstitute via Flickr

Steve Wynn isn’t just a hotelier, he is “the” hotelier, and he owes it all to the way he treats people. In his seminars, Steve Wynn explains that his business motto is anything that brings immediate gratification will be repeated, and he uses it to ensure his employees and guests feel taken care of. This way, he builds a loyal fan and employee base that has his back.

What about you? Share your best success tips you’ve learned and implemented below.

 

About Yoon Cannon: Top business coach Yoon Cannon has helped thousands of small business owners, entrepreneurs, coaches, consultants and sales teams achieve dramatic results in growing your business. Over the past 20 years Yoon has started 4 successful companies and sold 3 of them. She offers fresh insights as a seasoned business growth expert. Yoon delivers proven process for your sales, marketing and management development.  Grab free valuable gifts and resources at https://www.ParamountBusinessCoach.com  To book Yoon to speak at your next event email: YoonCannon@ParamountBusinessCoach.com To schedule a complimentary business coaching consultation call (215) 292-4947. 

 

© Copyright 2016

How Small Businesses Can Gain Competitive Edge

One of the questions I hear most often from SMB’s is “how can I gain business among so much competition?” I say don’t focus on gaining the business. Focus on gaining competitive edge, and it will lead to gaining more business.  How does one do that?

Well, I believe we all have an edge. Some of ours are just more dull than others. So, gaining a competitive edge begins with staying sharp.

Let me share a story I heard years ago. Two men were splitting wood. One of the men was tall and muscular and in excellent physical shape. The other man was shorter and much less muscular and appeared to be no match for the larger man.

The two men began chopping wood at the same time. When the first coffee break rolled around, the smaller man took a break while the larger man continued to split the wood. The larger man did not join the smaller man during their lunch break or afternoon break either. Instead, he continued to split wood all day long.
In the evening the smaller man went home, but the larger man continued working late into the night.
Their routine continued for nearly two weeks.

The larger man did not understand how the smaller man’s pile of chopped wood was roughly the same size as his when he was clearly stronger and had worked longer hours than the smaller man.

After about three weeks the smaller man’s wood pile was even with the larger man’s wood pile. After four weeks, the smaller man’s wood pile had surpassed the size of the larger man’s wood pile. The larger man was astonished and confused.

One day, as the smaller man was about to take another break, the larger man said to him “I cannot understand why you have more wood split than I do. You are smaller than I am, and you don’t have the strength that I have”. The smaller man replied “Ah yes, my friend, but you never stop to sharpen your axe”.

When it comes to getting the job done, your greatest tool is your own mind. Here are 4 tips to help you keep your mind sharp as a small business owner:

1) Make the most of your peak performance time Figure out the time of day when you are most energized and focused. Are you at the top of your game first thing in the morning, or are you ready to go after your second cup of coffee? Whatever your peak performance time may be, make sure that you schedule your most complicated tasks during this time of the day. The extra brain power will bring clarity and concentration.

2) Make a to-do list A to-do list lets you focus on the task at hand instead of trying to remember your mental list of the tasks to be done. Writing down your objectives for the day helps you stay focused on your key result areas. It also keeps you from feeling unproductive. One of my clients recently took a trip to NYC with his team to explore opportunities to expand his fast growing food and hospitality business. He later told me how disappointed he was that didn’t feel they accomplished much after a 12 hour day together. I asked him, “What were the key objectives you planned for the day?”  He replied, “I didn’t have any clear, set objectives.” His to-do list stopped with a decision to go to NYC which wasn’t clear enough. Make sure to-do list items like this also include what your most important goals are to accomplish.

3) Always be learning. If you want to gain the competitive edge you need to be willing to continue to up-level your skills and knowledge. I’m not talking about trying to be the “Jack-of-all-trades” type of person. I’m also not referring to setting yourself up for complete information overwhelm where you end up not being able to focus on your core competencies.  What I am saying is to choose one new important trend to learn more about or skill to hone that is effecting your industry. Those aha moments often occur when you’re in the midst of delving into new subjects, skills and technology.

4) Leave Work at Work I find that business owners tend to be type “A” personalities. You’re character trait to keep on pushing yourself is a large reason why you’ve succeeded thus far. But, be careful because your “strength” can also prove to be a double edged sword which is when we end up hitting the point of diminishing returns. You send in your car for regular maintenance checks. You power down your computers because even a piece of machine needs to rest to reboot. When you go home at the end of the day, it’s time to give yourself permission to leae the work on your desk. Spend time with family or friends and allow your mind to be present, not drifting back to thoughts about work.

I have always found that it’s much more exhausting thinking about work, than the energy it takes to actually get that work done. Your mind needs time to rest, re-energize and refuel — part of the process of sharpening your axe. So, commit to start each day refreshed, ready and re-sharpened to get the job done!

QUESTION: What do you do to keep your skills and your mind sharp as a small business owner?  Please share your ideas in the comment box below.

About Yoon Cannon: Top business coach Yoon Cannon has helped thousands of small business owners, entrepreneurs, coaches, consultants and sales teams achieve dramatic results in growing your business. Over the past 20 years Yoon has started 4 successful companies and sold 3 of them. She offers fresh insights as a seasoned business growth expert. Yoon delivers proven process for your sales, marketing and management development.  Grab free valuable gifts and resources at https://www.ParamountBusinessCoach.com  To book Yoon to speak at your next event email: YoonCannon@ParamountBusinessCoach.com To schedule a complimentary business coaching consultation call (215) 292-4947. 

© Copyright 2016

Strategic Planning Tip – Staging Your Business to Succeed!

Stage Your Business to Succeed!

“If you keep on doing what you’re doing, you’ll keep on getting what you’re getting. If you want to get something different, then you need to do something different”

Strategic Planning Tip - Staging Your Business to Succeed!Profound quote isn’t it? …. So, of course, the translation to your business is, if you want to achieve different results by this time next year, you need to take a different approach from how you’ve currently been doing things in your business.

This is the key reason why it is critical for you to do a strategic plan each year for your business regardless if you are a Fortune 500 company, a small family run business, or even a solopreneur. Your strategic plan is your written road map that will help keep you from falling into the same ineffective patterns of behavior and from repeating out dated systems that are no longer worth your time and investment.

Better than that, your strategic plan is your road map that keeps you focused on what things you will now commit to doing differently this year — designed to getting you greater results than ever before.

You know, every time I share the opening quote with business owners and Entrepreneurs I find that 100% of them agree with the truth of this principle. But, you know what? I find that less than 10% of the small business owner audiences I speak to actually have a strategic plan each year.

The 3 biggest reasons I hear all the time from small business owners and Entrepreneurs on why they do not do strategic plans each year is:

1. It seems like an exercise in futility for me to set goals and milestones on paper when things in the past never went according to plan anyway.

2. Doing a strategic plan seems like a large daunting project that I frankly don’t have those large chunks of time to be doing.

3. I don’t know where to start in creating an effective strategic plan

Alright, so let me try to de-bunk some of these limiting beliefs, so that I can help you to accelerate your business growth in 2012.

 

First, think of your strategic plan as a staging plan.

 
Strategic planning is not just a piece of paper that shows you’ve written down a bunch of numbers and dates on when you would theoretically like to see those numbers and figures achieved by.
So, if you could have a do-over of this past year (knowing the cause and effects of each of your decisions)…
     1.) What would you put on your short list of things you want to do the same?
    2.) What would you put on your short list of things you would do differently?
That said, you don’t want to be answering those 2 questions for your business as a whole, you want to segment your post-mortem thoughts as you would address a house room by room.Take the analogy of selling a house. In today’s difficult economy, there are an awful lot of homes on the market.

So, if you’re the seller, you’re going to need to maximize the staging of your home to stand out from all your competition. There are so many other homes your buyers have to choose from!Your realtor or your staging consultant will walk you through room by room with their recommended list of changes you should make to maximize your home’s appeal to the type of buyer you are targeting. The homeowner typically, will have 2 common responses to the staging plan:a) Yes, I’ve been meaning to do that for years, but just haven’t gotten around to fixing that yet.

b) No, I never noticed that was a problem (because I live here I just get used to it and have grown immune to noticing that horrible wallpaper throughout the house)

When the homeowner follows the staging plan, he/she watches their home magically transform from drab to becoming the next coveted hot seller.

That’s what your strategic plan does for your business. It should serve as your room-by-room improvement list that will help you to attract more targeted buyers.

It can do even more than that. Your strategic plan is there not just to achieve your sales goals, but all your other business-related goals — like, here’s one I help small business owners with a lot: I want to work 10-20 hours less per week this year but still increase my profits.

Yes, I can help you formulate what you roadmap should look like in your 2012 Strategic Plan to help you achieve that goal of working less while still growing the business so you’re earning even more.

Now, as for the other 2 objections for not doing a strategic plan:

  • Not thinking you have the time
  • Not knowing where to start

You give me 1 hour a month and I’ll show you how to stage your business to have your best year ever!

If you truly want to achieve better results this year in growing your business and you are ready to commit even just one hour a week, I have a simple 1-page strategic plan system that I can hold your hand step-by-step and guide you to do.

If you’re interested in learning more about how you can invest 1 hour a week using my 1-page strategic plan system, I invite you to call me for a no-charge 30-minute discovery session to explore what that could mean for you.

But, hurry on calling me. Because good intentions often turn into wasting years from procrastinating on what you could have easily and quickly done today.

Why not call me now? My direct line is 215-292-4947 EST.

QUESTION: What is the most challenging part of working on your strategic plan to help you grow your business? Please share your comments in the box below.

About Yoon Cannon: Top business coach Yoon Cannon has helped thousands of small business owners, entrepreneurs, coaches, consultants and sales teams achieve dramatic results in growing your business. Over the past 20 years Yoon has started 4 successful companies and sold 3 of them. She offers fresh insights as a seasoned business growth expert. Yoon delivers proven process for your sales, marketing and management development.  Grab free valuable gifts and resources at https://www.ParamountBusinessCoach.com  To book Yoon to speak at your next event email: YoonCannon@ParamountBusinessCoach.com To schedule a complimentary business coaching consultation call (215) 292-4947. 

 

© Copyright 2016

What They Don’t Teach You in Harvard Business School About Goal Setting

In the book, What They Don’t Teach You in the Harvard Business School, author Mark McCormack tells a study about the students in the 1979 MBA program. The students were asked, “Have you set clear, written goals for your future and made plans to accomplish them?”
The results were striking–only 3% of the students had written goals. Another 13% had some idea of goals but they weren’t written down. The other 84% had no specific goals.

10 years later, the graduates were interviewed again. The 13% who had goals were earning an average of twice as much as the 84% who had no goals. The 3% who had clearly defined and written their goals, were earning an average of 10 times their classmates.

Clearly, setting goals is powerful. Writing them down is more powerful. They’re important in achieving not just financial success but success in your health and relationships too.

But, to be effective, goals must be specific and clearly defined with a time limit. They can drive your “to do” list forward so you make measurable progress each day.

Goals are personal. It’s not enough to say you want to be “successful”. Define that, what does success look like for you? Is it flexibility with your time? A certain amount of money in the bank? Living debt free?

Be honest with yourself as you set your goals so you’re setting ones that will give you energy and motivation.

Here are 3 questions to ask yourself to set the goals that are right for you:

1) Set specific and measurable goals– otherwise, you won’t know when you’ve achieved them. Do you want more time off? If so, what does that mean? 2 mornings a week? Every Tuesday? Be specific. Likewise, it’s not enough to say you want to make “more money”. How much money? Do you want to increase your net worth by $100,000 in the next three years? Do you want to increase your pay rate by 10% in the coming six months? Once you define the goal, you can look at the big picture to know how you can make it happen.

2) Set the right goals for you–Your goals should energize and inspire you. If they don’t, re evaluate. May be they’re not big enough. Or, may be they’re too big. Goals should be big enough to push you but if they’re overwhelming you may need to readjust.

3) What has to go? As you grow and transition in your business, you will need to let go of some things. They may be tasks, habits or even people. Be aware of things/ideas/people that give you energy and what depletes you. Delegate or outsource your energy draining tasks and replace them with ones that energize. Recognize habits that move you forward in your goals such as getting regular exercise so you’re able to perform at your optimum level and continue doing them.
You’re in charge of your business! Design your business around the life you want to live and watch your achievements grow!

If you need someone to come alongside you to help you plan your goals so you reach them quicker, I’m only a phone call away! (215) 292-4947

QUESTION:  What has been your most effective strategy to help you set and achieve your goals? Please share your comments in the box below.

About Yoon Cannon: Top business coach Yoon Cannon has helped thousands of small business owners, entrepreneurs, coaches, consultants and sales teams achieve dramatic results in growing your business. Over the past 20 years Yoon has started 4 successful companies and sold 3 of them. She offers fresh insights as a seasoned business growth expert. Yoon delivers proven process for your sales, marketing and management development.  Grab free valuable gifts and resources at https://www.ParamountBusinessCoach.com  To book Yoon to speak at your next event email: YoonCannon@ParamountBusinessCoach.com To schedule a complimentary business coaching consultation call (215) 292-4947. 

 

© Copyright 2016

 

Slow and Steady Wins in Small Business Marketing

We’ve all heard the tale of the tortoise and the hare. The overly confident hare challenges the tortoise to a race. The tortoise creeps along as the hare races forward. Eventually, the hare grows tired and settles down on the sideline to take a nap. When he awakens, he sees that the hare is nearing the finish line. The hare sprints to catch up, but he is too late – the hare has crossed the finish line. As the tortoise demonstrates, slow and steady wins the race.This childhood fable contains an important message for business owners eager to grow their businesses. Sustainable growth and success relies on consistent advancement, and a sprint to the finish line is unlikely to result in the desired growth and enhancement of the business. In short, growing bigger starts with getting better.

As you focus on the growth of your business, take time to work on your business instead of just in your business. Many business owners claim that they spend so much time putting out fires that they don’t have time to work on bettering their businesses. Well, as the saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, and it is crucial to find time to work on your business in order to lead your business and employees on a path towards growth and development. Keep in mind that patience and steady progress are important to achieving your business growth goals.

Being consistent in smaller doses reaps much greater results in the end than large doses of good intentions.  After all, Rome wasn’t built in a day. It was built one brick at a time.

P.S. What do you need to GROW your business? Perhaps you need to get better at marketing your business. If you’re ready to win the game of marketing once and for all, then take a look at my next marketing training program at https://www.paramountbusinesscoach.com/business-marketing-training

QUESTION:  What marketing tactic is something you wish you could do more of and what is keeping you from being consistent?  Please share your comments below.

About Yoon Cannon: Top business coach Yoon Cannon has helped thousands of small business owners, entrepreneurs, coaches, consultants and sales teams achieve dramatic results in growing your business. Over the past 20 years Yoon has started 4 successful companies and sold 3 of them. She offers fresh insights as a seasoned business growth expert. Yoon delivers proven process for your sales, marketing and management development.  Grab free valuable gifts and resources at https://www.ParamountBusinessCoach.com  To book Yoon to speak at your next event email: YoonCannon@ParamountBusinessCoach.com To schedule a complimentary business coaching consultation call (215) 292-4947. 

 

© Copyright 2016

The Myth Behind Fast Growth Companies

Note From Yoon

Fast Growth CompaniesOnly 3 more months until we find out who the 100 fastest growing companies are in the Philadelphia area. 

If you would like to attend to network with these CEO’s I invite you to email me for an invitation. Or, if you’re like to be one of these winning companies I invite you to call me to discuss how we can get you positioned for fast growth awards like this. 

Enjoy today’s article on my take on the Myths Behind Fast Growth Companies. 

Blessings~ 

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The Myth Behind Fast Growth Companies

As co-chair of the Philadelphia 100 awards I get to help promote our area’s 100 fastest growing companies.  When you read about the success stories of fast growing companies it’s easy to get sucked into the thinkingt hat these lucky entrepreneurs had the “midas” touch and got to enjoy overnight success.

Well, more often than not, that just isn’t so. When you read past the headlines and dig deeper into many of the back stories of those successful entrepreneurs who turned their small business into the dream big business, what you’ll learn is a common thread of simple patience.

There is a special species of bamboo that grows in China and the Far East. After the bamboo is planted, no visible growth occurs for up to 5 years. Even under ideal conditions, the plant shows no signs of growth for years after it is planted. Then suddenly, as if by magic, the bamboo begins to grow at a rate of nearly 2 ½ feet per day until it reaches its full height of 90 feet! The bamboo farmer who persistently cares for the seemingly barren land will reap the rewards once the bamboo shoots take off. He knows that the rapid growth of the bamboo is not at all magical – the bamboo is able to grow so quickly because it spends the first five years of its life developing miles of roots to support its growth.

 

As a business owner, you must also develop a “root system” . When it comes to your marketing tactics are you patient in your persistence or do you swiftly abort tactics that do not result in immediate prospect inquiries? Frequently, it is just when a tactic was about to begin to take root that the business owner quits and moves on to trying something else. Often times, the difference between successful outcomes and failed outcomes is the one degree difference in your own mental state of mind between ‘trying’ and ‘committing’.

How about in your prospect conversion strategy? Do you have a follow up system that keeps in touch with your prospects for up to 2 years or do you typically give up after just 2 or 3 follow ups? Did you know that, on average, businesses have to follow up with potential clients 8 times in order to make the sale?! So, if you’re not happy with the results of your marketing, ask yourself,  “Have I been patiently persistent?” If you’re considering whether to abort a specific tactic take a good look at your actual efforts and ask yourself, “Have I simply been trying or have I truly committed to this tactic?” If you’re willing to be persistent, but just not sure whether you are taking the right approach to nurturing the root system of your business.

QUESTION: What inspires and encourages you as an entrepreneur to keep pushing forward in the midst of struggle?  Please share your comments below in the comment box.

About Yoon Cannon: Top business coach Yoon Cannon has helped thousands of small business owners, entrepreneurs, coaches, consultants and sales teams achieve dramatic results in growing your business. Over the past 20 years Yoon has started 4 successful companies and sold 3 of them. She offers fresh insights as a seasoned business growth expert. Yoon delivers proven process for your sales, marketing and management development.  Grab free valuable gifts and resources at https://www.ParamountBusinessCoach.com  To book Yoon to speak at your next event email: YoonCannon@ParamountBusinessCoach.com To schedule a complimentary business coaching consultation call (215) 292-4947. 

QUESTION: What inspires and encourages you as an entrepreneur to keep pushing forward in the midst of struggle?  Please share your comments below in the comment box.

© Copyright 2016