Apr 152013
 

education, simple, einstein, leadership, teaching, understanding

 

7 Powerful Ways to Achieve Results through Personal Discipline

4 Leadership tips for your Service Business

 

If you enjoyed this post, I would be grateful if you helped spread the word by emailing it to a friend or sharing it on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook. Thank you!

 

 

 April 15, 2013  Posted by at 5:00 AM Visual Quote Tagged with: ,  No Responses »
Feb 202013
 

 

passion, focus, hard work, enjoy the journey, trust your gut, rely on your team, long term success, honest and integrity, execution

But what else does it take to succeed as an entrepreneur, and how should an entrepreneur define success?

Here’s what I came up with, a Top 10 List:

10. You must be passionate about what you are trying to achieve.

That means you’re willing to sacrifice a large part of your waking hours to the idea you’ve come up with. Passion will ignite the same intensity in others who join you as you build a team to succeed in this endeavor. And with passion, both your team and your customers are more likely to truly believe in what you are trying to do. Continue reading »

 February 20, 2013  Posted by at 6:00 AM Leadership Tagged with: , , , ,  No Responses »
Jan 092013
 

 

business coaching, service coach, managing cash flow, seasonal businesses, test and measure, A customers, trust your team, ineffective advertising

We(Service Coach team) have found that growing a service business to fast is the reason why the majority of businesses fail in the first 5 years. Growing to fast ultimately leads to a lack of cash, and usually a very big cash flow problem. Taking the time to build your business, your team, and your systems is the way to ensure long-lasting profits.

As you grow your business, it is easy for you as a business owner to get seduced by the lure of easy money as you bring new customers into your business. However, Continue reading »

 January 9, 2013  Posted by at 6:00 AM Growth Tagged with: , , , ,  No Responses »
Oct 152012
 

Born Entrepreneur, Why Entrepreneur, Business Coaching, Passive Income, build a better business.

 

 

 

 

 

Did you read the E-myth yet? I decided this week to offer this book for free to my readers for 3 reasons.

  1.  You guys are awesome and I really appreciate that you have taken the time to click on my links and read/share my articles over the past year and a half.
  2. This book is my all-time favorite business book. I have gained so much from the information within these pages that I want my readers to have the same opportunity without the barrier of having to purchase the book.
  3. You deserve it! Being a business owner is not only the most rewarding job title out there it is also the most demanding.  So take some R&R time, sit back, relax, and enjoy some down time.

Do you want to learn more about creating leverage and building systems in your business?

If you would like to get a free copy, please comment below on why you want to build a better business and leave your physical mailing address in the comment.  I will then mail you a copy of the book after this offer has expired. This offer expires 10/31/2012.

Not sure what the E-myth is all about? It’s only the best business book of all time. Click here to read my book review.

If you enjoyed this post, I would be grateful if you helped spread the word by emailing it to a friend or sharing it on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook. Thank you!

 October 15, 2012  Posted by at 6:00 AM Give Away Tagged with: , ,  8 Responses »
Sep 242012
 

team, key performance indicators, leadership, hiring employees, building a better business, outsource, goals, prioritize

There are three steps managers and staff can take toward a more efficient, more productive organization. .

1. Identify and focus on your biggest priorities.

Too often employees find themselves spending time on work that isn’t core to the success of the business. As the Pareto principle states: 80% of the value comes from 20% of the work. The key here is for your business to identify the few objectives that drive Continue reading »

 September 24, 2012  Posted by at 6:00 AM Growth, Team, Time Tagged with: , , ,  No Responses »
Sep 172012
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

7 Smart Rules to Follow

Here are some tips that will help empower and enable your team to succeed while you’re away, and they may just make your vacation more enjoyable.

1. Set some ground rules.

Set expectations before you leave. If you just can’t not check email, make your plans clear to those around you. Perhaps you want to check email just once at the end of the day, and respond to only notes that have been marked “urgent”–or you may not want to respond at all. Either way, make a plan before you leave so that everyone knows what to expect.

2. Delegate.

Make sure your team feels empowered to carry on and step up without you. Delegate responsibilities for approvals and decisions to team members whom you trust. And make sure your team knows who is responsible for what. This will not only ensure nothing goes unnoticed, but it will empower people to take more initiative–when you’re gone and even after you return.

3. Give yourself a schedule.

If you said you’d check your email once a day, stick to it. If you decided to do one conference call, don’t add more to the calendar just because you feel you should and you’re free. Stay true to the expectations you set.

4. Make an effort not to respond.

The more you respond to non urgent emails and phone calls, the less clarity there is around responsibility. You are on vacation; you should do your best to stay there. Remember that you’re helping your team as well as yourself.

5. Trust.

There is a reason you work with the people you do; you probably hired most of them. They’re smart; you trust them. Remember this, and don’t worry about what happens when you take a vacation.

6. Allow for mistakes.

Everyone drops the ball at some point, but even that is a learning experience. Allow for mistakes to happen when you’re away. It won’t be the end of the world.

7. Enjoy your vacation.

Really take your vacation. You deserve it. I always feel a bit sorry for the people who constantly check in even if they’re on vacation, because they’re obviously not having an excellent time.

The leaders whom I respect the most are the ones I never hear from while they’re away. Set a good example and go away–preferably where cell service is spotty. And have fun.

If you enjoyed this post, I would be grateful if you helped spread the word by emailing it to a friend or sharing it on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook. Thank you!

 September 17, 2012  Posted by at 6:00 AM Time Tagged with: , ,  2 Responses »
Sep 052012
 

time management, email settings, small business communication,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The average U.S. professional spends half their working day on email. They are constantly tethered to their smart phone, responding to short bursts of communication, and creating email overload.

I have whittled down a list of email best practices that can help you and your team start a revolution, reduce dependence on email, and stop wasting time–today.

1. Make sure email is the right communication option.

Not all communication is appropriate for email. Segment your personal communications by interactions that are right for email versus phone versus in-person meetings. Adopt a company-wide policy, and don’t allow email to become the default communication mode. A great first policy: Don’t start discussions via email. It takes significantly more time to compose a point and then debate it on email than to have an in-person conversation.

2. Think about the person reading your note.

Many email responses are clarifications of what the sender wrote or additional questions that perpetuate email churn (rather than end a thread succinctly). You can greatly reduce the amount of back-and-forth by thinking more about the email recipient–the user, in this case–and by crafting your message to meet her needs. Before hitting Send, slow down to consider: Did I give all the information needed? Will the reader understand my message? Is my point clear? Are the next steps obvious?

3. Anticipate questions.

The easiest way to reduce needless email is to anticipate what your recipient’s impressions and questions will be after reading your message. If you send a brief email stating, “budget meeting is canceled today,” the reader will probably wonder why, and when the meeting will be rescheduled. Anticipate the recipient’s reaction and communicate more thoroughly, answering questions you think she’ll have.

4. Call out important information with headlines, bullets, and numbers.

Example:

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Most people don’t read. In our fast-paced digital culture, we scan and skim content, looking for the highlights. You’ve probably noticed that major Web publishers use headlines, bullets, boldface type, and other design best practices to ensure readers stay engaged. The same applies to your emails. Don’t send paragraphs of text in which the salient points and calls to action are buried.

5. Save time by creating email templates.

Many emails to employees, clients, or colleagues are similar in nature. Rather than constructing each one from scratch, save templates that remind you of important details to include and contain prebuilt design best practices. For example, at my company, we have templates for client service updates, for scheduling confirmations, and for scheduling reminders.

6. Target your communications.

Irrelevant messages are not opened and can create a negative impression. Think very carefully about the people you include in your “To” field. Does that recipient really need the information, or are you adding to email inbox burden?

7. Select email preferences.

Establish your email preferences (how often you like it and when), and make those norms known throughout your company. When leading a project, don’t default to being copied on everything. Indicate to your team when you should be CC’ed on communication. Likewise, ask your colleagues and staff for their preferences in your communications with them.

If you enjoyed this post, I would be grateful if you helped spread the word by emailing it to a friend or sharing it on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook. Thank you!

 September 5, 2012  Posted by at 6:00 AM Time Tagged with: , , ,  No Responses »
Aug 062012
 

 

sales, sales people, conversion rate, follow-up, sales tips, sales scripts, sales testimonials, sales goals

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1. Ask More Questions:

Questions are the answers in sales. Too many sales people tell their customers the features and benefits of their product or service but never take the time to find out which of the benefits the customer is actually interested in. So, ask them to tell you what they want.

2. Set Daily Targets:

A common theme in sales- chase enough customers in the hope that one or more will buy. In reality this leads to sales people only selling to the early adopters or price shoppers who would probably buy from anyone. However by keeping track of how many customers buy on average from a given number of leads and then introducing strategies to convert a higher percentage will ensure your sales team learn how to improve their results. Set daily targets and assess your performance against these targets.

3. Use Sales Scripts:

No one likes to hear someone read from a script, but customers do expect us to be consistent. So how do you ensure all your interactions with prospects are consistent and that you deal with objections in a professional way? By writing down what it is you say in any given situation and by training your team to use the same questions and language you can bring a lot more productivity to your sales process.

4. Offer / Guarantee:

Why should someone buy from you and not a competitor who can provide the same product or service at a lower price? What is it that you offer them or can guarantee them that will differentiate you from your competition? Your offer must generate excitement to get prospects to make a decision to buy now.

5. Ask For The Sale:

One of the biggest common failings in sales is not asking the prospect to buy. A fear of rejection, that the sale will be lost, prevents many sales people from actually asking the final question. Just do it and learn from those that say no so you can improve your conversion rate over time.

6. Learning:

To be successful in sales there absolutely must be a habit of learning. Learn from other sales experts, learn from books, learn from your best customers and learn from past experience. Both your good and bad experiences can be a huge help in improving your sales success. You must record these experiences and build your knowledge over time. Write it down so you do not keep repeating the same mistakes over and over again.

7. Testimonials:

We all need to be reminded of what we are doing right and why our best customers love dealing with us. Sometimes we focus too much on what is going wrong rather than what we are doing right. Focus on the good stuff and we will do more of it! Get your customers to write down their testimonials so you can use it in your marketing and attract even more great customers.

Question: When is the best time to make a sale?

Answer: Just after you made your last one. Ever hear stories of football players who stop scoring touch downs and it seems they will never score again? Well generally they change something about themselves; their attitude or a superstition or a habit; and then suddenly they are back in scoring form again and they keep scoring.

If you enjoyed this post, I would be grateful if you helped spread the word by emailing it to a friend or sharing it on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook. Thank you!

 August 6, 2012  Posted by at 6:00 AM Growth Tagged with: , , , ,  No Responses »
Jun 112012
 

scheduling crews, taking responsibility, weather forecast, planning ahead

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1. Tip #1. Schedule with what I call a “soft” Friday. I tend to stack up my jobs and routes early in the week, leaving Thursday, and especially Friday softer work days(fewer work orders). I also know in the back of my mind that I have Saturday to make up any missed work if needed. This way if things go well during the week, all my employees show up and complete their routes, the weather cooperates, and everything runs smoothly I have one of 2 situations.

  • Situation #1.  I have an easier Friday and time to focus on sales, planning, budgeting, or any other tasks that I personally have.  Making sure I have a clean desk before I leave for the weekend. Who can complain about this worst case scenario?
  • Situation #2. Things went well during the beginning of the week and I would like to get more work done this week. If this is the case then I look at the coming week and pull any last-minute jobs up into the current weeks schedule. This also makes me happy, because getting more work done means making more money in that given week. As any seasonal business owner knows making money while the sun shines is the key to our success.

2.  Another tip, is to schedule interior or non rain/snow sensitive work on the days that your weather man is forecasting rain/snow. Rarely do I remove all my jobs and routes from the schedule. Even if the weather is supposed to be poor, I still always try to get something done. Maybe route work or pressure washing, anything that is easy to re-schedule is worth trying to complete on a bad weather day.

3. The last tip, is that the accuracy of the 10 day forecast diminishes the further out you look. In other words your weather forecast tends to be very accurate for the next 48 hours. Anything past 48 hours the accuracy of the prediction reduces dramatically.

Falling victim to the weather forecast is easy to do. Putting blame on the weather, weather man, or your customers is not the answer to effectively managing a seasonal business. We need to take responsibility for our actions and make the changes necessary in our organizations to help us manage the scheduling of our crews around the ever-changing forecast of mother nature. We do this by focusing on the things that we can change(reliable employees, and equipment) and relaxing about the things that we can do nothing about. Worrying is like a rocking chair, it keeps you busy but it doesn’t get you anywhere.

Is your seasonal business dependent on the weather forecast?

What tips do you use in order to help you manage this unpredictable factor?

If you enjoyed this post, I would be grateful if you helped spread the word by emailing it to a friend or sharing it on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook. Thank you!

 June 11, 2012  Posted by at 6:00 AM Team Tagged with: , , ,  1 Response »
Jun 062012
 

facts, opinions, beliefs, self limiting beliefs, passive income, goals, killer questions, who's responsible, open ended questions, powerful words, powerful phrases, controlling the conversation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There are three types of communication questions:

  1. Open-ended questions- these are questions that cannot be answered simply by “yes” or “no”. They encourage the other party or parties to open up and provide information from their perspective that will allow you to more fully understand their position.
  2. Reflective questions- these allow the other party or parties to elaborate on a statement after you repeat a particular word or phrase that the other party used.
  3. Directive questions- these guide the other party toward a desired, specific piece of information to allow you to quickly move to the response you want. Avoid using directive questions in a manipulative manner as this can backfire by creating mistrust and turning people against the desired communication.

In considering these three types of questions, always consciously see how many closed-ended questions can be converted to open-ended questions by using : What, Why, When, Where, Who, How. However, a word of caution using the “Why” question. It tends to be to directive and usually puts the other person involved on the defense. Essentially it is hard to use a “Why” question and not sound like you are accusing someone of something.

 

Below you will see a few examples of specific questions that help to keep you in control.

  • Is that a fact or opinion? To learn more about the difference between facts and opinions, click here.
  • What are we going to do next time so this doesn’t happen again?
  • How does that make you feel?
  • What do you think we should do?
  • If you feel it’s not your fault, then who’s do you think should take responsiblity?

To learn more about powerful words and phrases that keep you in control click here.

If you enjoyed this post, I would be grateful if you helped spread the word by emailing it to a friend or sharing it on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook. Thank you!

 June 6, 2012  Posted by at 6:00 AM Leadership, Team Tagged with: ,  1 Response »