It Won’t Work, So Get Started

Plan A almost never works.

Plan B only works in text books and movies.

Plan C – may be getting you closer…

…but it’s more likely modified Plan G based on tweaks from the field operations, that missing piece of data from finance, and the painful, albeit necessary, lessons from Plans A, B, C, D, & E

But it starts with Plan A. So get busy implementing the plan that likely won’t work, but is the only way to get to the plan that will work.

Zax, Onychophagy, and Owling

We are the best

We are the BEST!

WE ARE THE BEST!!

Tell somebody who cares…really.

If you have the best zax in the world, I don’t care; I’m not trimming roofing slate.

That you can help overcome onychophagy, is of no interest to me, I’ve never had a problem biting my nails.

Help me with my owling problem? Sorry I don’t own any sheep.

Your message is important…to somebody…

The truth is most people don’t give a tinker’s damn about your product or service.  That’s why you need to spend an inordinate amount of time finding those who not only give a damn, but are just waiting to hear from you right now. If you advertise, use an appropriate outlet. If you email or direct mail, don’t just develop a great list, constantly maintain this list.  Use social media? This hasn’t made marketing easier; it has only made marketing more accessible.

Say it loud, say it a lot, say it with wit and creativity, but say it to someone who cares.

Willy Nilly

We get so busy doing…business.  Looking for clients, doing the work, running payroll, getting more clients, doing more work so we can meet the next payroll…the treadmill keeps going and we stay on this treadmill failing to realize we are not getting anywhere.

I’m a pretty simple guy, and while there might be many nuisances, business planning boils down to

Vision: What you want the company to be.

Strategy: What are you going to do to achieve your dream or vision?

Tactics: How and when will you execute your strategy?

But what happens? We react. An opportunity comes in, we chase it.  Another opportunity comes in, and we change directions and chase that one.  And yet another opportunity comes in, and like a puppy with ADD our attention is quickly diverted.

Vision is lacking, strategy is thrown out the window, and as for tactics? We don’t need no stinking tactics.

Instead of chasing every opportunity, every mode of marketing and just running around willy-nilly with no clear direction and no opportunity for real growth, maybe it’s time to return business 101: Vision, strategy and tactics.

Providence Requires Action

If you didn’t have the guts to make that contact five years ago, that first project would have never been a reality.

If you never had that first project, how would they know you can solve such complex problems?

If you never solved their problem, you wouldn’t have such an enthusiastic advocate.

If you didn’t have them as an advocate, how would your new client have found you?

If they had not found you, where would you be today?

Delay no more – make that call.

Titles That I Get

Maybe it’s just me, but it seems the more creative the title someone has, the more I’m left scratching my head about what exactly it is they do…

Senior Creative Logistics Consultant
Knowledge Transfer Consultant – South Region
Midwest Compliance Promotion Officer

Hmmm….

Plumber – they do plumbing
Sales – they sell
Accountant – they do accounting
Engineer – they engineer

Now these I “get.”

If the company has to be creative in figuring out your title, maybe you better get serious about bringing some real value to the organization or you may find yourself with a new title.

OBO

Advertisement: “$500 Or Best Offer”

Haven’t you already admitted defeat? Haven’t you already said to the potential buyers, “it’s not worth $500, offer me less”?  I think it’s safe to say you have less than lofty expectations.

What about your professional services, do you have an OBO mentality? Do you go into the transaction believing you must discount your services in order to get someone to buy? Do you assume that you have to start discounting as a sales strategy?

That’s not good.

Professional service providers work very hard and are paid for their experience, knowledge, tactics, and ability to help organizations run more efficiently and profitably.

Stop discounting yourself.

We are good. We will save you money. We will help you increase effectiveness and efficiency. Here is my fee…and that is the best offer!

Decide on Something

What’s worse than making a bad decision? Making no decision.

The idea sounds great! Heck, you are even gaga about the idea and ready to go with the exciting idea, until you hear an opposing view – and then you abandon the thought…sigh, you lose your excitement.  And then…you hear another view that supports your original idea, now you are gaga again!  Only to be brought down by…

Get off the roller coaster.

No plan is perfect, no idea is without its drawbacks, but in execution of the plan you will learn, adjust, and make even better decisions in the future.

Gather information, seek counsel, contemplate, pray and do what you have to do to come to a decision.  But whatever you do, be decisive, be bold, and be firm!

 

Three Questions

What is it that you or your company does really well?  I’m talking about that one thing that brings forth your absolute passion and where your God-given talents are obvious.

Next question: what do you or your company need to do to get more of that work?  If this is your passion and your calling in life, then you need to focus your energy on using this talent – more!

And the final question: what is it that you or your company needs to stop doing or chasing right now?

You have a limited budget, limited hours in a day, days in a week, weeks in a year, and years in a lifetime.  Use them all wisely.

Why Do You Do What You Do?

Do you really still need that form to be completed by every employee each time there is a request?  Is that report still necessary and does anyone read it?  Are the third and fourth level of review helping your product or hindering your response?

What is it that you are doing today that is not necessary or is simply a waste of limited time and resources? This is not an insignificant question because the new competitor down the road, who has just opened shop, has not yet developed these habits.  They are doing business in the most efficient and profitable manner possible. They are set up to maximize the customers’ experience and minimize the hassle.

This brings us back to the mirror. Why do we do what we do and does it still make sense?

Pride needs to be set aside;  maybe that “thing” you do and that “thing” I love to do, just doesn’t need to be done anymore, it’s nothing more than busy work, and it doesn’t help our bottom line or our client.

Take a fresh look and be willing to change.

Stand Out in a Crowd

It’s crowded, very crowded. Engineers, sales professionals, attorneys, you name it – everyone is looking for ways to differentiate themselves from the crowded group of competitors.

But how can you be different, and does it really matter in the market?  Do we need to be evermore shrill and outrageous to get attention and to stand out from the crowd? Once we stand out…then what?

Rather than having a shtick that might get you a second look, maybe the tactic should be to just be really, really good…exceptionally good.

Doing excellent work, providing the best product or service that you possibly can without excuse, can sometimes be so deafening that you drown out the noise of the competition.

Be different, be exceptional.