Archives for November 2014

I finally got it all together but now I can’t remember where I put it

“I finally got it all together but now I can’t remember where I put it”If I had a dollar for every good idea I have ever had I would be at least a hundredaire!  Seriously – I do have a lot of good ideas, what I don’t have is either the time or the finances to get them implemented into moneymaking endeavors.  And, as I am closer to my 100th birthday than my first one, I can only wonder, “what is going to happen to all of those good ideas?”

That thought led me to another – – what did I do with all of those great ideas that I know I wrote down and put somewhere? Which, of course, leads us to the truth of our BUMPER STICKER quote – – sometimes, even when we get it all together, we can’t remember where we put it! Now, contemplating all of that led me to yet another thought – – everyone should keep a “special” Journal where all we record is our great ideas.  That way, they would be saved for posterity and, perhaps, be part of the legacy we can pass on to future generations and they might be able to turn those ideas into a Family Fortune!  Every once in a while I stumble across one or two of these ideas and think, “Man, I know that will still work . . .”  But, human that I am, I just put them back in the file where I found them and, within a week, not only do I no longer know where they are, I don’t even remember what they are!

All of this reminds me of a story I read one time about someone who was taking a tour at one of the early FORD plants.  As they went through the offices a door was opened and there sat a man with his feet up, a pen and pad on the desk before him, but apparently not doing anything.  Intrigued, those taking the tour asked who he was and why he wasn’t working.  The reply was, “Oh, he is working, he’s Mr. Ford’s designated thinker.”  Now that, I believe, would be the perfect career for me!!!!  Armed with pen and pad, once I got it all together, I would never have to worry about where I put it!

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“Sometimes there’s a Reason why We’ve always Done it that way”

"Sometimes there’s a Reason why We've always Done it that way"We live in an era when the watch cry for all of society is “Innovation!” If there is a “new” way of doing something, it is automatically accepted that it must be better – even before it is proven so.  That’s why, sometimes, we need step back and take time to analyze what is being suggested, rather than simply abandoning what has been proven to be “tried and true.”  If we do this, as the title suggests, we might discover that there is a reason why “we’ve always done it that way!”

There was a TV commercial a number of years back where the head of a company is passing out airplane tickets to his staff, presumably his sales staff, so that they can go visit their clients around the country.  He saved one for himself, the one that would take him to see “an old friend,” who had called to cancel his contract because he felt as though the company no longer cared about him or his needs.  The innovation that company had fallen victim to was modernization, computerization, and the loss of personal contact with their customers/clients.  The result was there was a “disconnect,” and the “human aspect” of business was removed.

One of the greatest drawbacks today to “customer service” and, in many instances, just plain “service” is the fact that so many MBA holders have been taught to pursue one goal and one goal only – – the bottom line!  This may not only destroy the relationship between companies, it can destroy relationships within a company.  Now, it is possible that your business is large enough that you can zero in on “the bottom line” and not worry about the relationships that have made your business a success, both internal and external.  However, if you built your business “on your word,” given both to clients and employees, then you not only know, but also thoroughly understand, that “sometimes there is a reason why ‘we’ve always done it that way!’

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Sometimes What We Have The Right To Do Isn’t Right To Do

Sometimes What We Have The Right To Do Isn’t Right To DoFrequently this statement is attributed to moral issues, especially those that are now “protected” under the U.S. Constitution.  The reality is, of course, it is also true in a host of other realms, including the business world!

If you own a business you can pretty much draft the policies that you will follow regarding employee relationships.  And, the policies that you develop may not only seem appropriate, they actually may be so.  However, holding a “strong line” might not prove beneficial to either you or your employee.

Hypothetical situation:  You have established a rule that all employees must be at your place of work thirty minutes before the workday starts.  Everything is going fine until Mass Transit changes the bus schedule so that one of your best employees is not going to be able to get there thirty minutes early, but rather only twelve minutes early.  You obviously have the right to dismiss this employee and make them find another job – – but, is that the right thing to do?  It’s not like they are coming in late for “start time”  And, even if they were, is letting them go better than readjusting their hours?

The question now becomes, “How do we distinguish between what we have the right to do and what’s right to do?”  The answer may be more simple than you think – – the best policy may be to simply adhere to the GOLDEN RULEDo unto other as you would have them do unto you.  How devastating would it be to you to lose your job because of something you have absolutely no control over?

This probably brings up yet another important issue:  While businesses must be run on “absolutes,” there typically is a way to work within the parameters of the “spirit of the law” and not necessarily the “letter of the law.”  When we, as managers or owners, encounter situations where we have to evaluate or re-evaluate the rules we have established, we must examine what we hoped to accomplish when we made the rule, and then determine if the business, and the employee, are best served by strict adherence, of if it would be better for everyone concerned to create the “exception” that makes it a viable rule!

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Moving your Facebook Page to 100,000 Fans

Moving your Facebook Page to 100,00 FansThere are a multitude of activities where it can be said, “it’s a numbers game.”  This is probably no truer that in the realm of Social Media, and, of course, one of the major aspects of that realm is Facebook.  While “Fans” and “Friends” are important when you are socializing, they are downright vital when you are using your Facebook for business.  As a result, it is important that if Facebook is to be a major part of your Internet Marketing that you know the ways to build your number of Fans to 100,000 plus!

In essence, there are three ways that this can be accomplished.  The one you opt to use, of course, depends on a number of things, including but not necessarily limited to your budget and your time frame.  With these thoughts in minds, there are basically three avenues of approach that you can pursue.

PURSUE “LINEAR GROWTH”

This is accomplished when you use your Facebook Page to disseminate helpful content to your Facebook Fans.  To do this, it is helpful to have a true, heartfelt desire to share information that others can use.  When this happens, your Fans, in turn, will have a desire to Like, Share and/or Comment on your posting. Once this transpires, you will become part of the “News Feed.”  The next obvious step is the fact that the Friends of your Fans will then Like, Share, and/or Comment on your content.  And THAT is the key to this approach!

What you should have, nay, what you must have is Interaction with your content!  If you do not have Interaction, the content is basically “isolated” and, for all intent and purposes, is doing you little or no good.  On the other hand, if there is enough Interaction your Facebook Post could actually go Virile, and that, of course, would be a very good thing!!!!

Linear Growth is considered “organic,” as it is a “natural” growth.  As a result, you shouldn’t be surprised if it takes twelve to eighteen months for you to reach the kind of numbers you are looking for.

BOOST CONTENT WITH ADVERTISING

In this case, your “Advertising” is supplemental to posting good content.  The Advertising you do should, of course, be in Facebook.  The Advertising can be directly  related to the content, but does not have to be.  In this realm you have two choices:  You can Advertise for your Facebook Page, or you can even make it “Post Specific.”

As can be imagined, Advertising will excel the growth of your Facebook Page. Fortunately, this can be accomplished relatively inexpensively, utilizing as little as a twenty-dollar budget.  Known as “Ad Boost,” this will, typically, get you more “Page Likes..”  As usual, you have an option or two here at your disposal.  You can either Ad Boost to the Friends of your Fans, OR you can choose a specific demographic and concentrate on that with your Ad Boosts.  As one would suspect, Ad Boosts will create a situation where your “Growth Curve” will be greater than if you are only building your Page in a Linear manner.

CONTESTS AND GIVEAWAYS

The inclusion of Contests and Giveaways in your Internet Marketing Program gives you the potential of having the growth that takes place be on an exponential level.  The intent of the Contest/Giveaway Program is to accomplish three things:

  • “Rev Up” your Fans.
  • “Hook Up” with Fans your Brand may have but are not yet on Facebook.
  • “Connect” with potential new Fans.

Ideally, of course, when you proceed with your Contest/Giveaway you will do all three!

An issue, or concern at least, deals with the question as to whether or not your Contest/Giveaway should deal directly with the product/service you offer.  While they don’t have to, it stands to reason that they probably should.  Let’s look at an example and then explore why a direct correlation is probably beneficial.

A while back we had a client who was introducing a new Bible into the marketplace.  They decided to run a Contest, and the Grand Prize was a trip to The Holy Land.  As you can see, people who would be most apt to be interested in a trip to The Holy Land would also be pretty apt to be interested in Bibles so the contestants that participated in their Contest were virtually qualified leads.

Now let’s look at a scenario where the Grand Prize is so grandiose that you will get lots of contestants, but that may or may not be interested in your product/service.  Let’s say you are offering a Grand Prize of $10,000,000.00.  You can rest assured that you are going to get a lot of traction for your Contest.  But, it is pretty safe to assume that the vast majority of the people who enter your Contest are only interested in your Grand Prize.  On the other hand, let’s suppose you operate a Sporting Goods Store and the Grand Prize you are offering is a new 16’ Bass Boat.  Now, the people who participate in your Contest are, at the very least, interested in fishing and probably interested in hunting as well.  Now, you have people who are as much interested in your product as they are in your Grand Prize!

As you can see, whichever way you choose to build your numbers the ensuing growth is never happenstance, but rather the result of a well thought out, coordinated plan.  If you are not sure which way you want to go, or feel that you need help in implementing any or all of these programs, feel free to contact me, Randall Mains, at 1-800-224-2735 Ext. 1 or randall@pathmakermarketing.net.  I am sure that regardless of the route you choose to use, if you are committed and stay dedicated to it you will achieve the goal you have set for yourself!

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Attitude Outweighs Aptitude

Attitude Outweighs AptitudeBeing an under-paid educator for most of my life, I have had the opportunity to hold down a number of jobs during the summers to make ends meet.  And, while I was not overtly checking out the various work places that I labored at, I did come away with some pretty interesting observations.  And, one of the main things I observed is, “Attitude Outweighs Aptitude.”

While I am talented and skilled in several areas, I discovered that most bosses would choose me to do “special projects” over other more proficient workers because of my “Yes, Sir!” attitude. You see, I think John C. Maxwell summed it up pretty well when he said, “People may hear your words, but they feel your attitude.” No doubt about it, a positive attitude will give off good vibes!

Some people may look at the idea of “attitude” with a jaundice eye, but I happen to agree with what I consider three major intellects and what they say about it:

“Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference.”
Winston Churchill

“Weakness of attitude becomes weakness of character.”
Albert Einstein

 “Your attitude, not your aptitude, will determine your altitude.”
Zig Ziglar

In closing, I would just like to point out that your attitude will determine the importance of your work and the value of you to your employer and your work place.  You see, I totally agree with William J. Brennan, Jr. when he said, “There are no menial jobs, only menial attitudes.”

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Online Fundraising – Tips For Online Marketing On A Tight Budget

The World Wide Web is a tool with endless limits. Creating and maintaining a business presence online is more practical than ever before.

Give us a call today at 623-322-3334 to talk about your needs and how we could help you find a path to success on the internet. Find out more about us, visit us at www.pathmakermarketing.com

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By Altering Our Attitude We Can Alter Our Lives

By Altering Our Attitude We Can Alter Our LivesWhen Norman Vincent Peale wrote “The Power of Positive Thinking” he understood that if you think positive your life will be positive.  This, in essence, is the same theory that Zig Zigler adhered to when he said, “By altering our attitude we can alter our lives.” Both of these gentlemen understand that perception is ninety percent of reality, and their sentiments reflect an excellent point that we all should consider in our businesses and in our careers.

To lay the groundwork for you to change your attitude, the immediate question becomes, “what is your attitude about your business and/or career?”  If you are not greeting each day with a positive, “can do” attitude you undoubtedly are not enjoying the optimum amount of success that you could – – and should!  The next question becomes, “how can I change my attitude?”

Peale, who is responsible for an uber amount of high impact quotes, also said, “what the mind can conceive and the heart desire you can achieve!”  And that may be where your change of attitude needs to take place – you may need to realize that your life does not need to control you, but that you can control your life!

There are an almost incomprehensible number of people who are so mired in their careers that the joy has left their lives.  Whether they like their careers/jobs or not is only part of the issue – – if all you do is pursue business success you will discover at some point in time there is more to life than work.  And, the sooner you get that outlook on life the better off you will be.

Do you even know what your attitude towards life is?  Actually, there are several areas where you need to conduct an introspection and determine what your attitude towards each is.  These, include, but are not limited to:

  • God
  • Family
  • Friends
  • Business/Career
  • Those in Authority
  • Money
  • Free Time
  • Self-Satisfaction

Even if we had the time and space for me to elaborate on each of these it would probably do you little good, as the end result would be that you would only know my attitude towards these issues.  To help you understand what areas you need a change of attitude in, complete in the following chart for yourself (it’s OK to have someone you trust assist you!):

Category
Your Current Attitude
Satisfied? (Yes or No)
Ways You can Change 
This Attitude

God

Family

Friends

Business/ Career

Those in Authority

Money

Free Time

Self-Satisfaction

Knowing that changing your attitudes, and thus your life, is probably not going to be an easy endeavor,  just remember that nothing worthwhile is easy!

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Why are Some People Who Live on the Edge Surprised When They Fall?

Why are Some People Who Live on the Edge Surprised When They Fall?I admit it. I have a fear of heights. It began many years when I almost fell from a precipice on the grounds of the United States Military Academy at West Point. I had been running as best one can through some dense underbrush when I saw what appeared to be an opening ahead. As I broke through, I realized that it wasn’t just an opening – it was drop of more than 50 feet. I managed to grab a hold of limbs reaching out to me on both sides, limbs that saved me, perhaps from death.

It was in those eternal seconds when I was leaning forward, hanging on for dear life, staring at the rocks below and sucking for air, that I realized that I needed to learn to become much more acutely aware of where I am at all times. That has saved me from falling countless times since.

I find it fascinating that so many people like to live their lives and even run their businesses living on the edge. Don’t get me wrong. I’ve heard all of the explanations, like going for the gusto, or experiencing the next big thrill, or making a lot of money. But, have you ever noticed that, before you make that bungee jump, some person whom you have never met before, hands you a clipboard and a pen and asks you to sign a waiver that releases them from responsibility for the action they are about to help you take? Think about that for minute. You’re the one about to do the dangerous thing, but they are the ones looking for protection!

I’m not here to advise you against taking risks, but there is a huge gap between foolish risks and calculated risk. Experience has proven to me that most people unwilling to count the cost of their actions. Unless you count the cost, you can’t calculate the risk.

I don’t walk close to the edge of cliffs or busy highways, because the cost of the risk is more than I believe that I can afford. There are many accomplishments that can be achieved, if one is willing to pay the price for living on the edge. Climbing Mt. Everest is a loft goal, but it is not without significant risks. Anyone who would consider taking on that challenge must also consider that the risk of failure is greater than the reward of success. The bodies buried beneath the ice and snow are testimony to those who had believed that nothing could stop them.

Our generation has tainted the original meaning of the Nike slogan, “Just do it.” The fact is that that is often very bad advice. I have stood high on mountain tops and savored the magnificence of the Grand Canyon, but I refuse to approach the edge. Stone Mountain rises out of the ground not far from Lithonia, Georgia. I have climbed it several times. But there is a strange phenomenon about that place. There is a point of no return as one walks toward the vertical side of the mountain. The human eye is not able to discern where that point is. For that reason, many, thinking that they were safe, walked too close to the edge and have fallen to their deaths. My point is that often times we are not able to tell where the falling off place is.

That being the case, it seems to be best to try to avoid that place, not to try to see how close you can come to it.

On a much more practical scale, I propose that we count the cost and calculate the risk more carefully when . . .

. . . We think about telling a lie
. . . We consider stealing from others
. . . We want to see how fast this baby can go
. . . We contemplate revenge
. . . We feel like following the crowd
. . . We value power or popularity more than personal integrity
. . . We don’t care what others think
. . . We don’t think that we will get caught
 

When you break it down and reason it out, there is no more dangerous place to be than on the edge. The thrills that kill last a lifetime. The problem is that the lifetime is often much shorter or much less enjoyable than it could have been.

I can think of a dozen ways to end this, but I think that Rotary International’s 4-Way Test can help in every situation where we must decide what to think, say, or do. We would all benefit from asking ourselves these four questions before we make any decision:

  • Is it the TRUTH?
  • Is it FAIR to all concerned?
  • Will it build GOODWILL and better FRIENDSHIPS?
  • Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?

Answering those questions honestly will keep us far enough away from the edge to be safe and secure, if not prosperous and of clear conscience.

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If God is your co-pilot you need to change seats!

Have you ever noticed how often someone asks us our opinion when, in reality, all they want is our approval or confirmation?  For example, your wife might come out of the bedroom and say, “What do you think of this dress?”  Now, invariably, they have already decided to wear it and what they really want you to tell them is how nice they look in it!  You know, sometimes that’s the way we are with God – – we don’t want him to “pilot” our life, we just want Him in the cockpit in case something goes wrong!

If you fall into this category you are not alone.  Far too often we put together a plan for our lives and then take it to God for His rubber stamp! We want Him to check and make sure that “All Systems Are Go,” but we don’t want Him to draw up our flight plan – – we are, we are sure, totally capable of doing that ourselves.

Now, and this is really the interesting part, when we relegate God to “co-pilot” status and something goes wrong, we blame Him!  We wonder why He allowed us to “crash and burn,” even though we never really allowed Him to “captain” the ship!

In a day and age when we are bombarded with the concept that we need to be self-sufficient and rely on our own capabilities, it truly is a step of faith to give up the pilot’s chair and allow God to take over.  However, if yo want your life to experience a “smooth flight” and end up with a safe landing, you need to make sure daily that you have not allowed God to be only your co-pilot!!!

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Is Success Measured by What We Accomplish in Life?

Is Success Measured by What We Accomplish in LifeSuccess is measured by what we accomplish in life. Isn’t that right? No, it is not.

The problem with measuring success by what we accomplish is that we have no standard against which to measure. The fallacy of determining success is often subtle.

We have been trained to view success as reaching a goal. That goal could be imposed or it could be self-defined. Some would say that earning a degree is a measure of success. It’s hard to argue with that, but it is only a success in that you achieved a predetermined goal. But that “success” is limited to achieving that singular goal. Once achieved, there must be new goals set and new attempts to reach those new goals. Reaching each goal is a success. But when does a person become a success?

Is it when you earn your first million dollars? Or is it when you retire? If success is earning a million dollars, the majority of people on the planet are not successful. If it is retirement, another whole group are not successful, and many of those are people who successfully planned to retire, but who suffered some kind of physical or financial disaster. Does that mean that they were never successful? Suppose you make a million dollars. Suppose you spend it all. If you called earning it success, what do you call spending it?

May I submit that success should not measured by what we have done? Rather, it should be measured by what we have done compared to what we could have done. Success is a measure of accomplishment versus possibility. The real question is not, “What have you done?” It is, “What have you done with what you have available?”

The founder of a prominent, private university used to say that, “Not everyone comes to school with a 50-gallon brain to fill. Some only have a thimble.” He would continue on to make the point that the school would make every effort to fill whatever brain capacity you brought. The problem, as he had seen it over the years, was that altogether too many who brought large capacities graduated without a thimble-full of essential learning. The question he was asking was, “At the end of four years, what will you have learned compared to what you could have learned?”

Barbara Corcoran, of Shark Tank fame, noted that she will never invest in any enterprise run by children of wealthy parents. Her observation was that they tend not to appreciate what they have, because they have so much. Therefore, they are more likely to make reckless decisions because they think in terms of, “What have we got to lose?” At the other end of the spectrum there are people who invest and risk everything they have. Some win. Some lose. But they all tend to try harder.

Those with nothing to lose don’t need to try as hard. If their venture fails, they can always try something else. I generally agree with her observation. It is not always true, but it is often true. She understands that people who are standing with their backs to the wall have no choice but to give it everything they’ve got. If they don’t, they may have to start over with nothing. These people have determined that they are “all in.” For them, there is no “Try.” There is only “Do.”

They are the successful people. They are not the people who measure success by what they have done. They are the people who measure success by doing all they can do to be all they can be.

Where are you on the road to success? Are you giving it all you’ve got? That’s what it is going to take.

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