Apr 25 2009


Don’t Blabber Your Goals!


     You probably just went through some wrenching exercises to create or recreate your business and/or personal goals. You defined your problem in writing. Then you turned your problem statement into a pursuit statement. 

     Perhaps, for example, you started with a problem statement like “Sales are down 20% last quarter” and took it to a goal statement like “We are increasing sales 20% next quarter by introducing a new revenue stream and reinforcing existing customer accounts with added support services.”

     Or maybe your goal is a personal one, and you took it from a problem statement like “I am feeling increasingly edgy around my family” to a goal statement like “I am learning and regularly practicing two new approaches to stress management so, by the end of next month, I can better control my upset feelings at family gatherings.”

     Next, you applied ALL fournecessary criteria to your goal statement to make sure it was/is: 1) Specific, 2) Realistic, 3) Flexible, and 4) Due-dated. You did this because you know that without ALL four criteria, you don’t have a goal; you have only a wish, and you know that wishes live only in nonproductive fantasyland. (Notice too the goal statement examples are in the present tense of you having already accomplished them to help visualize them in your mind as done deals.)

     And you’re on your way . . .

     Congratulations, but don’t blow it by blabbering to others about your goals! Most other people, first of all (and sadly) do not have real goals, do not understand goal-setting, and do not believe that having goals actually works. Most people would rather wallow in self-pity and go nowhere in life. So you know where it will get you to tell this sluggish majority what you are in pursuit of achieving.

     Second, keep in mind that even when you run across someone in your immediate life who does think goals can work, and perhaps has a few herself, you are putting your goals at risk by sharing them because that other person –even with all good intentions– simply does not walk in your shoes or live in your head, and your goals may seem intimidating, annoying, overbearing, ridiculous, threatening…no need to continue this. Just keep your goals to yourself!

     Your business goal of increasing sales can become a source of mockery to someone who feels threatened and that will roadblock your progress just because it will divert your energy. Your personal goal to improve family relations by learning stress management can have the same kind of distancing effect on the very people you’re hoping to get closer to.

     Don’t waste time and energy and defeat by testing this. I can give you 150 gazillion examples anytime you want. Call or email me. Keep your goals to yourself if you really want them to work! 

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Hal@Businessworks.US   931.854.0474

Open  Minds  Open  Doors

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

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Mar 21 2009


What’s blocking


your success


right this minute is




     Ellen Degeneres says she wants a million Twitter followers. Good for her! That’s her goal. She believes in and sets and has consistently achieved her goals. That should have absolutely nothing to do with you except to set the stage for inspiring you to set and achieve YOUR own goals.

     Remember to make sure your goals are realistic, specific, flexible and have a due-date. Without all four criteria, you have only a wishlist!

     Pay attention to Ellen. You don’t have to like her (I do) or like her politics (I don’t) but she is teaching us all some important life lessons that we never got in school. When you believe in yourself and in your ability to achieve what you want in life, you will achieve it.

     There are skazillions of great motivational and inspirational sayings out there, and –by the way– you need only watch Twitter updates for about 10 minutes to see hundreds of these being tossed out like grass seed. There is no shortfall of resources or words of wisdom.

     The shortfall that is blocking your success right this minute is INSIDE YOUR HEAD! Either directly or indirectly, you are doing something to prevent yourself from making the things happen that you need to make happen in order to reach the point where you consider yourself to be a success.

     If you REALLY concentrate on this, you should be able to figure it out and step over the roadblock. If you simply can’t come up with what and where that roadblock is, get a professional to help you. What that means is a professional shrink, psychologist, psychotherapist, Gestalt therapist, reality therapist, counselor, tutor, traditional physician, nontraditional healthcare professional, lawyer, accountant, investment specialist, personal and professional growth group facilitator, etc.

     If you can’t get or afford professional help, start up or join a group dedicated to serve as a sounding board for business leaders. I ran one of these for years, meeting regularly on Sunday evenings for awhile, just business owners interested in giving and getting ideas and input to/from other business owners.

     Meet. Find one person who can facilitate discussion and buy her or him coffee. Recruit one other person to be the organizer, to get attendance at the meetings, circulate agendas, and publish master contact lists for everyone. It’s that simple. Try it.

     Make it like Twitter LIVE. Just by trying, you will be moving yourself and your business ambitions forward. Stay open-minded, and see what you can learn from others who are experiencing similar dynamics. If it’s not working, call me 302.933.0116. I’ll help you get on a roll.  

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Hal@Businessworks.US 302.933.0116

Open Minds Open Doors

Many thanks for your visit and God Bless You.

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

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Mar 03 2009


No, you don’t need to move


  your business    


to the Caribbean!

(aaaah, but it might be nice to try for awhile, eh?)

Here’s a 6-Point Approach to creating a more positive climate for your business that comes partly from The Management Analysis Center and partly from my firsthand experience. it works:

1.  BUILD KNOWLEDGE. Know the capabilities of your staff as well as their weaknesses. With the understanding that Heraclitus the Greek philosopher said over 2500 years ago that “the only thing that’s permanent is change,” and that Thoreau once said “all we ever have is limited knowledge,” use what you know to determine (or update) the fundamental goals of your business.

GOAL CRITERIA REMINDER: A goal must have all four of the following criteria, or it is merely a “wishlist,” and not a goal. It must be 1) Realistic, 2) Specific, 3) Flexible, and 4) Have a deadline or due date.

2.  DEVELOP A SHARED VISION OF YOUR BUSINESS GOALS. Let employees participate in the process. Tell them the problems. Listen to their ideas. Take notes. Encourage others to take notes.

3.  DETERMINE WHAT SPECIFIC CHANGES SHOULD BE MADE. Should changes be made in job descriptions or physical layout to improve working conditions?

4.  SET THE EXAMPLE. As an owner/operator or manager, you are a role model whether you like it or not. People pay attention to everything you say and do. You will not be fostering teamwork if you rule by threats and intimidation. Praise in public; criticize in private. Act, talk, and think consistent with the goals you establish.

5.  REASSESS YOUR OWN FUNCTION to make it consistent with the changes you are making. If, for example, you want to establish better communications, you may need to establish a more open door policy, listen more, and listen more attentively! To get more good work from people, seek out and reward the things people do right, and try to overlook those they do wrong. (Remember that small, frequent, one-time-expense rewards motivate best and cost less than permanent ongoing pay raises with accompanying tax and benefit increases)

6.  DEVELOP NEW METHODS AND SYSTEMS for enhancing a more positive climate, such as instituting weekly status review meetings (with set time periods, a clear agenda circulated ahead of time and follow-up report focused only on decisions made and who will do what by when) to evaluate progress, or a reward system for improved performance.

In an optimum positive climate, people know exactly what it is that is expected of them and where they fit in. Everyone shares the same goals. They know how they can be effective and what kinds of behavior will be rewarded.    halalpiar

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    ADD TO THE DAILY GROWING 7-Word Story started 174 days ago (inside a coffin).  Click on the link to the right, or go to “BOOKS” tab at the top of this page, then to the top headline link.

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Dec 20 2008

Entering The Great American Work Slowdown







     Like using up a yellow traffic light to get under and past it before it changes to red, this is the time of year to make the most of The Great American Work Slowdown that starts this weekend and lasts until New Year’s weekend’s hangovers have been adequately resolved (probably January 6th or 7th this year depending on whether you use Alka-Seltzer or not!). 

     What is that supposed to mean?  You saying to work while everybody else is partying?  No.  I’m saying take time to relax, take time to be with family (and bury the family-feud hatchets at least for a few tolerable hours), and take some time to reassess where your business is headed and how you’re going to get there.

     Now, I’m not talking corporate types here.  They get downtime all year.but have managed to convince themselves that they work hard and deserve it.  I’m talking about the all-American entrepreneur business owners and managers, and professional practice principals — those who thrive on stress, work 6-7 days a week, and have the ingenuity to make a go of anything that comes along.  If you’re it, you know it.

Take time to assess where you’re headed . . . “Where you’re headed” as in goal adjustments.  Are your goals/objectives specific, realistic, flexible, and due-dated? 

If all four of these criteria are not present by the way, your goals/objectives are simply Disneyland fantasy wishes that are wasting your time, money and energy! 

Take time to reassess how you’re going to get there . . . “How you’re going to get there” as in strategies.  What are the thinking avenues you’re going to take to reach the goals? 

If you lock in both of these, the only place you can fail is with the tactics you use to execute the strategies to achieve the goals — and tactics can be changed in two shakes of a lamb’s tail (which is pretty damn quick if you’ve ever seen a lamb’s tail shake!)

     S L O W   Y O U R S E L F   D O W N. 

     Wear your jeans and take your slippers with a giant cup of coffee or bottle of wine or some sipping brandy.  Park your car somewhere out of sight.  Lose your cell phone.  Play some background music you like.  Light a candle.  Bring your dog.  Take advantage of empty email and voicemail in-boxes. 

     Quiet time in the office can work wonders.  You’ll astound yourself with how much you learn and create and plan when nobody else is around.  You’ll get more done in half a day than you normally would in an entire week. 

     Remember all behavior is a conscious or unconscious choice.  Make a conscious choice to treat yourself to some private quiet business think time.  Oh, and do make written or tape-recorded notes of your rendezvous with your SELF!  They’ll make a great launchpad for your 2009 opening bell!    halalpiar    

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See Nov 29th post (below) for New Year’s contest prize and rules – Then GO FOR IT!  Emails to Hal@TheWriterWorks.com with “SOUNDS OF THE SEASON” in the subject line.          # # #

Check out and contribute to the daily growing 7-Word Story started 102 days ago (inside a coffin).  Click on the link to the right, or go to the “BOOKS” tab at the top of this page, then to the top headline link.

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