Pondering Persistence

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Success is never overnight or instantaneous. The truth is, when you see someone who seems to be an overnight success, chances are they worked for many years and then experienced something that allowed their success breakthrough.

Just ask Kim Nelson, founder of Daisy Cakes. She perfected her recipes over many years, and then found "instant success" when she appeared on Shark Tank. You can read about that here.

Success often comes after you've waited, worked longer than you think you should have had to, and weathered many challenges. I see people giving up, caving in, or stopping just shy of success -- literally days before they could have captured the brass ring -- because they didn't and don't have the "stick-to-it-iveness" required.

What's the magic formula for persistence? I'm so glad you asked!

  • Know why you're embarking on your venture. Why is the fuel for your what, and will keep you going when the going gets tough. Note: the going will get tough. That's why the few who do versus the many who wish they would enjoy the spoils.
  • Have a carefully thought-out (and written) plan that you review regularly. Regularly equals every morning and every night.
  • Surround yourself with your Power Team (a.k.a. MasterMind). These are people that: think possibility, talk possibility, act possibility and are excited about the possibilities. Nothing gets me more excited than talking to someone who's excited. So, I spend a good part of each day talking to those who are up to big things and can't wait to share with those around them.
  • Eliminate toxic people, places and things. I recently ended an association with a toxic person. I'm literally euphoric with that departure -- and I didn't realize how toxic the situation was until it was over. Make sure your relationships are mutually-beneficial, life- and energy-producing, and empowering. If they're not, do whatever it takes to eliminate it! The same goes with your personal and professional environments. The cost is not worth it.
  • Take 100% responsibility. This eliminates any possibility of victim thinking and provides time and space for creating a new, positive result.
  • When all else fails, double-down. Not getting enough "yes's?" Get more no's. Double the number of calls, meetings, inquiries, proposals, pitches, workouts ... whatever it takes to get your desired results.
  • Just because it hasn't happened yet, doesn't mean it can't happen today or tomorrow or next week. Remember, it's darkest at 4 a.m., right before the sun starts to come up. Don't give up at 3:59. Just take a quick power nap and rise in time to enjoy the light.
In the Go for No! Movie, each participant was asked what was more important: talent or tenacity? To a person, we all said tenacity. Tenacity and persistence are the twin sisters of success. Get to know them very well!

Honorée Enterprises, LLC. turns service providers into rainmakers, average producers into rock-stars, and dreams into reality. For more information on how we can specifically help you or your organization, click here. You can read all about Honorée here.

Loafing on your job hurts your employer, but it hurts you more.

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Some people expend far more energy getting out of work than they would spend doing the job well. They may think they are fooling the boss, but they are only fooling themselves. An employer may not know all the details of every job or every task an individual performs, but a good manager knows the results of effort. You can be sure that when promotions or plum assignments become available, they won’t be offered to loafers. If you do your job cheerfully and well, not only are you more likely to be recognized and rewarded, but you also learn how to do your job better. As you become more proficient, you become more valuable to your employer. You also acquire the most valuable of all assets — the confidence that comes from knowing you possess skills that will increase your value to any organization.

~Courtesy of Napoleon Hill, Law of Success 

Avoiding Failure

The biggest source of failure 
for companies is success.*

*They forget what made them successful in the first place:  
... the customer.

Short-Term, Long-Term or Both?

Most professionals focus on what is happening today, and in the immediate future, in their businesses. This is the short-term play, and is, of course, critical to getting the bills paid and keeping current clients happy. What I notice is that very few focus on what is going to happen (or could happen) over the coming months and years: the long-term play.

In my opinion, a solid, stable business that will last includes focus on both. Here is some food for thought to keep you in the black today, and over the long-term, too:
  • Keep your clients extremely happy. Provide amazing service, the kind they can't help but talk about to their friends and associates. Call them when you have nothing to say but hello, to check-in and make sure they are, indeed, thrilled with you and your company.
  • Develop relationships for today and tomorrow. It's not what you know, it's who, and how well. The earlier and deeper you build your bench, the sooner it will yield results and revenue. Even if you're a second-year associate at a law firm, you should be out getting to know other second-year CPAs, insurance salespersons, and bankers. You'll "grow up together" and before you know it, running the show (and bringing each other in on deals). You didn't think to start that early? No problem: start today. Pick complimentary service and business providers, and get in relationship with them over lunch, coffee, drinks and baseball games. In business, we are most likely to do business with people we know, like and trust. And, we're most likely to share business with those same people.
  • Leverage yourself, and if possible, your business. This is a long-term play that will provide revenue for you long after you've stopped working (or working so hard). Can you provide an additional service by getting a license? I know an estate-planning attorney who got his insurance license. He passes on the referrals to an insurance professional, but brings in an additional six-figures each year in referral fees. How about an additional product? If you have a strong knowledge area, write a book. Being an author gives you credibility, and in some cases, a nice stream of additional cash. Another option is to expand your business by having others work for you and provide an income stream. You can pay them a salary while they earn 2-3x for your business. Think and act creatively for this step, in 5-20 years you'll be glad you did.
  • Invest and allow your "babies to make babies." This is Honorée-speak for "your money makes you money." Perhaps the market has you spooked, but you're open to buying a franchise or investing in someone's small but growing business. I know couples who own multiple Subways and make more than $250,000 a year just from their stores. Investment opportunities abound, and you can receive a large pay-off when it's done right.

Both the short-term and long-term plays are important. You need to eat today, but you'll also need to be eating many years from now. Take some time to come up with a plan that empowers you to act immediately to ensure you have a terrific May 2012 and a fantastic May 2032!

***After you read this post, be sure to visit me at my new home here.***

Honorée Enterprises, Inc. turns service providers into rainmakers, average producers into rock-stars, and dreams into reality. For more information on how we can specifically help you or your organization, click here. You can read all about Honorée here.

Three Tips for Success

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In business, what you know about what you do makes you an expert. However, if people can't or don't want to work with you, then how great you are at your core competencies just won't matter. Here are three tips that will help to ensure your professional -- and personal -- success!

1. Get the Name Right

Don't you just hate it when people mangle your name? Me too -- along with just about everyone else on the planet. Why? Because nothing sounds as sweet to our ears as the sound of our own name. Even in a crowded room, we'll hear our name and turn to see who called it.

Say a person's name correctly and often, and you'll have his attention. Contort or truncate it beyond recognition and you'll loose him, maybe for life.

It's one of the simplest ways to establish a good business relationship, yet so many people mess it up.  Don't be one of them.  Instead, take the time to listen and observe.  It's a moment very well spent.

Here are some suggestions on how to do this:
  • Take careful note of how the other person introduces herself.  If she says her name is "Elizabeth," call her "Elizabeth," not "Liz."  If she says her name is "Liz," don't call her "Lizzy."
  • Repeat any unusual pronunciations you hear to make it stick in your mind. If the other person hands you a business card, make a note on the back of the odd articulation so that you can say it correctly the next time you talk to that person.
  • Don't assume familiarity. Call the other person by his or her formal title until they invite you to call them by their first name, or they identify themselves to you by their first and last name. If you have difficulty doing that, for example, if "Mrs. Skrybailo" just isn't rolling off your tongue, no matter how hard you try, ask permission to use the first name. Never assume it.

2. Don't Forget the Golden Rule

"Treat others like you want to be treated."

It's a simple rule, but one that is seldom followed in business. For some reason, we tend to show deference only to those who are closer friends, prospective business, or higher up on the organizational chart than we are. Big mistake. Big, huge mistake. Why? Because while leaders give the commands, followers execute the orders. Step on a few subordinate or lateral toes on a regular basis, and you'll find it difficult to get your job done.

You probably remember people who have treated you poorly over the years and hold a special grudge for them. Well, others will do the same for you. Yesterday's secretary might be your boss tomorrow. 

Don't leave a trail of verbal victims in your wake, even if you're in a particularly bad mood. It will come back to haunt you.

3. You Attract More Flies with Honey than Vinegar

Whether you're managing a company, a department, or your household, remember that you set the tone for those in your charge. How effective you are with your staff is a direct result of your people skills. How you treat those who serve you says a lot about you to others, as well. The better you "play" with others, the more influential you become to your peer group. Be nice to others. It will pay huge dividends.

It is always nice to read a short book that cuts to the chase (has zero fluff) with great ideas for reaching your goals.” ~Andrea Waltz, author, Go for No! Read the entire review here. Buy this book here

Honorée Enterprises, LLC. turns service providers into rainmakers, average producers into rock-stars, and dreams into reality. For more information on how we can specifically help you or your organization, click hereYou can read all about Honorée here.

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