Feb 19 2017


Are You Paying Enough

Attention to YOU??????

A  C  T  I  O  N  S




First popularized in 1856 by Abraham Lincoln

The expression may date back as far as 1628!

The day-to-day motto of our new U.S. President


But “So What?” you say. “What does all that have to do with ME?”

You already know the answer, but odds are you pretend to dismiss it, forget it, mock it, trash it, or have turned a blind eye to the reality that these five words have, in fact, marked your every accomplishment in life.

So what makes you conveniently forget the importance of ACTION as in getting up off your butt and DOING something instead of just talking about what needs to be done?

I am interested in hearing any good answers to this question, but confidently doubt you can produce even one. Yet you know in your heart that everything you value has come to you as a result of stepping up and out… being assertive (that’s “assertive” not “aggressive”).

Take a one-minute break and ask yourself what it is that you are sitting on, wasting time and energy with (and probably money as well), that can best be resolved by simply taking ACTION? Have you heard that other great expression?:







Where does it best apply in YOUR life? You think it doesn’t? Of course it does. How long have you been standing still?

Formalized goal-setting is great if its underpinnings match the proven-to-be-essential five criteria, but big-time progress isn’t always measured by what you seek.

Ask anyone in public or military service about the values of TAKING ACTION vs. TALKING about it. “Whoa!” you might say, “but (thankfully) I’m not in emergency situations every day.”

Oh, but you ARE.

Do you think it’s not urgent to spend real time with someone you love instead of worrying endlessly about taking a career or business growth step that you fear tripping over? To be clear, this is NOT about Reacting. It is about Responding.

How much of an emergency is triggered by dwelling on “what if’s” instead of simply trying your best-bet idea? Is that more risky than not taking a few hours with your spouse or children? Would your “yes” response be the same if, God forbid, something drastic happened to a loved one to prevent you from enjoying more time together?


. . . in sports, career professions, and business are inevitably those who live as much of the time as possible in the present, in every passing moment, instead of the past that’s over or the future that’s not yet come (and may never come).


They are the people who take the risks of taking action steps (because as Einstein said: “ALL WE EVER HAVE IS LIMITED KNOWLEDGE”) instead of trying to gather every conceivable factoid before deciding, or simply paying lip service, or making excuses, or being “all talk.”


Is it time to stop talking about what


you’re going to do, and just do it?

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Hal@Businessworks.US             931.854.0474

Guidance to Over 500 Successful Startups

Open  Minds  Open  Doors

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

God Bless You and Thank You for Your Visit!

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Feb 05 2012

TEST Where You’re Going

Get it in writing . . . 

The Hardest Business Task!


Yes, test your objectives. Yes, test your strategies. Yes, test your tactics. And, yes –first and foremost– test your concepts. It’s the only sensible way (before spending money on ideas that might sound great, but that fail to produce), to make sure your pursuits are solidly grounded and integrally connected. 


What’s the hardest task in business? It’s really not hiring and firing, or funding, or maintaining operations, or making sales (though HR, finance, operations, and sales people may all want to lay claim to having the most difficult jobs). The hardest task is getting it in writing. Huh”? What’s “it”? And what’s so hard about writing? Writing what

I believe the most challenging of all business tasks is getting your direction and contingency plans straight. (Considering widely-published SBA findings that over 90% of business failures are attributable to “poor management,” knowing where you’re going is certainly Job One for most entrepreneurs.)

Writing your objectives clearly, simply, specifically, realistically, flexibly –and with a due date attached– has proven time and again to make the difference between revenues and profits, between success and SUCCESS!


The more principals, partners, investors, advisors, managers involved, the harder the task. It becomes exponentially difficult because –to have any value– everyone involved must agree at least somewhat with every word. In other words, agreeing on a precise target is sometimes the most trying of all challenges.


Is it (your target objective) the same as your Mission or Vision Statement?

No, but it probably needs to directly reflect both.


Whatever the objectives (or goals) are that you verbalize for yourself or your business, they need to be:

A) Missions in and of themselves, and they must fit conceptually under the umbrella of your own or your company’s overall Mission Statement.

[If your objective(s) fail to measure up to your overall Mission Statement, or don’t quite fit under its umbrella, re-examine where you’re headed with things. You may need to switch gears, or direction, or timing, or desired results.]

B) Following the path of your Vision Statement.

[If this isn’t happening, redirect your focus or re-visit your Vision Statement to consider some adjustments.]

Can you make changes and still be “on-target” with your pursuits? Absolutely! Remember that flexibility (together with realistic, specific, and due-dated) is one of the key criteria for effective goal-setting. If you’re not reaching the goal you defined, be flexible enough to redefine it, or change the tactics you’re using.


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Hal@Businessworks.US   302.933.0116

Open  Minds  Open  Doors

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

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Dec 18 2011

Christmas Carol Business Message

What’s YOUR nomination for a best business Christmas message? 

“…To face unafraid


the plans that we made…”

(From Winter Wonderland


Endless studies show people are more afraid of public speaking than of death, so it would seem to follow that most people refuse to set goals for themselves and their businesses because they are afraid of failure to achieve what they decide to pursue. I mean that makes sense, doesn’t it? Fear of failure is part of life, right?

Well, there are all kinds of answers to that hypothesis. Fear is a behavior and all behavior is a choice, so fear is a choice . . . why choose to be afraid? Having no goals (especially if you own or run a business) is like being captain of a ship that has no rudder — another example of what seems to me to be a curious choice.

Did you know that when you decide to tell someone else (who doesn’t set goals) about your goals that you open yourself to such criticism and undermining that you stand to actually end up taking steps backward instead of forward?

Did you remember that effective goal-setting requires strict adherence to a simple set of criteria? A goal that’s realistic (to separate it from frivilous pursuit of wishes, hopes, and fantasyland) must be, in fact, realistic. It must also be specific, and due-dated. be clearly written down and carried with you, and –aha!– be flexible!

If you set a goal that looks like it’s not going to happen as you get to the the due date, be flexible: change the due date. Or change the expected payoff, or the dimensions or parameters of the goal. Flexibility means it’s okay to change the goal and the direction or the planned result. Y0u will not be a failure unless you choose to be. 

Writing your goals down and carrying them with you forces your brain to buy intro them. It’s not unlike checking your wallet before you go someplace special to make sure you can cover anticipated expenses, or at least to simply take inventory. It’s a self-discipline behavior that keeps you focused on what you will achieve.

By keeping yourself focused on your specific, realistic, flexible, due-dated pursuits, you increase the odds for success dramatically, and the avenues you take will be more compatible with what you seek to achieve. In addition, your focus will attract endless resources to help you get where you’re going — people, events, information, money.  

Face unafraid the plans that you made . . .


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Hal@Businessworks.US   302.933.0116

Open  Minds  Open  Doors

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

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Dec 13 2011


You are NOT


“going into” 2012!


You are making it happen!


You’re an entrepreneur!



The forecast: stormy, bleak, doom and gloom? I don’t think so. You didn’t start or take over a business to improve your skills at playing the victim role. When you kicked into second and third gear, it was because you saw stars in the sky and you knew you were making your own choices, creating your own destiny. Right?

So, let’s look at the mess we’re in realistically. We have a chance to get out of this year standing upright, and to make happen what has to happen. To jump-start 2012– make the very best possible use of the next two weeks. That means, first and foremost, to do family relax time, pay attention to your SELF, and go with the flow.

In other words, abandon the maniacal pursuit you’ve been on all year in favor of jetting down, assessing yourself and your business. Refocus your day-to-day activities. Relax your brain, and set some meaningful, realistic goals that serve to both challenge and guide your interests and activities.

Did I say “meaningful”? Yes. Scribbling or txtg a nice-sounding statement about what you aim to do in 2012 may make you feel like patting yourself on the back, but it doesn’t mean beans about what’s real and possible and what needs to be flexible and specific and have a deadline attached. Who says? The Chief Goal Keeper.

If what you come up with as a target for yourself and your business fails to accomplish all six (That’s ALL SIX!) of the following criteria, you are simply not serious about wanting to improve your life. People fail at goal-setting because they fail to be flexible, to realize that not reaching a goal means only one thing: Change The Goal!

To be effective, any goal you set must be specific, flexible, realistic, due-dated, written on paper (and adjusted regularly), and carried on your person! Take all six of these steps, and keep your goals to yourself (because too many people who don’t have goals will try to discourage you from achieving your own!). 

If you do exactly what’s suggested here, you will be successful beyond your wildest dreams in 2012 because you will be making it happen… because you are an entrepreneur, and entrepreneurs don’t “go into” things; they make things happen. Will you? Are you an entrepreneur or a victim? Creating your own destiny is your choice! 


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Hal@Businessworks.US   302.933.0116

Open  Minds  Open  Doors

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

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Dec 19 2010


Headed to 2012–and


your business


is still breathing?


You got guts!


It takes more, much more, than an MBA, family inheritence, or good luck to have a living, breathing business survive this still-spiraling economy. It takes guts.

Guts? Right. You must have ’em, or you wouldn’t be reading this. Okay, enough with the backpats, where do you go from here? Yeah, into January, right. I know. But beyond that, what?

Since you’re an entrepreneur preoccupied with making your idea work, you’ll probably be doing all your gift shopping online, or running around at the 11th hour grabbing stuff off what’s left on nearby retail shelves.

If that’s not the case, and you’re a true romantic who has planned every inch, and had a thousand hours to plan and organize and wrap, you’re probably a corporate type who did all your Christmas shopping in July, and not reading this anyway.

So, here’s a thought: What about taking yourself through a group brainstorming experience —  by yourself?


Is that like suggesting that you do a multiple-personalities thing? Yes, but not so close to the edge that you’ll need a shrink by New Year’s.

I’m suggesting you start with a pad and pen or pencil (if any of those tools are still within your reach). Laptops and all those other hand-heold devices just don’t cut it! They don’t give you enough time to think.

Besides a little practice with that lost art called handwriting, the experience alone could be a good stimulous (speaking of which, Red Bull isn’t a necessary accompaniment, but you may want a cup of coffee?). 

Next, turn off your cell phone; I promise the world won’t end. Then find a place where you won’t be interrupted. (HA! Talk about challenge!) Maybe it has to be a locked car in your driveway?

At the top of your page, write the one business issue that is most important for you to address in 2012.

Be realistic.

Draw a vertical line down the middle of the page.


Put a + (plus) sign on the left and a – (minus) sign on the right. Start to write down everything you can think of (in the left-hand column) that could be a positive outcome of resolving this issue. Everything you imagine as negative on the right. Think freely.

Don’t criticize or second-guess yourself. Instead, go back over your list from the perspective of what you imagine to be your most trusted advisor or most valuable employee. How would it change?

When you’ve given these two columns about 10-12 minutes for each of your split personalities, STOP! Take a swig of coffee. Take some deep breaths. Rub your hands together briskly.

Next page: Write down the three steps you can take on Tuesday, January 3rd, to make some of that left-hand column stuff on your first page start to happen. Rank order the priority of steps.

Make some specific notes about the who, what, when, where, and how each of those three steps can/should/will occur.

Give them a timeline.

Be realistic.


Keep it all flexible: your rankings, your steps, your timeline, and what you expect for results (yes, without this, it’s hard to know why you’re pursuing anything) . . . flexible.

If you get close to the date and it’s not going to happen, don’t whip yourself (that’s hard to do anyway), just move the date. If the steps involve money or other people, leave them flexible enough to adjust in case things don’t go swimmingly (which as you know, they rarely do!)  

Fold up the pages. Put them in your pocket. Type them into your computer tomorrow (not today) and edit them in the process. Share the information as appropriate.

Congratulate yourself for doing goal-setting the right (most productive) way. Now make it happen! And stop worrying. Remember, you got guts!

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302.933.0116 or Hal@BusinessWorks.US

Thanks for visiting. Go for your goals! God Bless You.

“The price of freedom is eternal vigilance!” [Thomas Jefferson]

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

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Sep 15 2009


Exceptionally Rewarding?


OR Extremely Frustrating?


     Common to most volunteer groups  I’ve experienced as a management consultant and trainer is that they bite off more than they can chew! Goals are generally vague and too all-encompassing, which creates feelings of frustration, prompts rapid turnover, and frequently results in failure.

     Remember that group goal structures  and criteria are no different than the ones I’ve discussed here for individuals. http://bit.ly/aaCJpz     http://bit.ly/ay6N2C   are two good examples worth checking] 

     For a goal to be a genuine goal  and not a “wishlist” item, you’ll find at the above links — among other points — that a goal must be specific, realistic, flexible, and have a due date, and it must adhere to all 4 criteria. You may want to re-read the last sentence. It contains the guts of establishing goals that work for individuals as well as groups, and it’s worth giving some thought to each of the 4 criteria.

     Why are meaningful goals  particularly important in working with volunteers. Because achievement leads to feelings of success, and feelings of success are the ONLY attributes that can sustain and justify volunteer effort. 

All other problem solutions mean little unless (volunteer group) members feel that they are progressing toward an achievable goal.

     According to  the training profession benchmark University Associates Editors Jones and Pfeiffer in one of their classic  Annual Handbooks for Group Facilitators, “All other problem solutions mean little unless (volunteer group) members feel that they are progressing toward an achievable goal.”

     One way to accomplish the task  of setting realistic objectives — based on consensus and group decision-making methods — “is for volunteers to set aside a block of time to devote totally to planning,” say Jones and Pfeiffer.

     Volunteer groups,  the much-acclaimed editing team experts go on to say, also need to establish meaningful and appropriate contracts between group members and the organization. And these contracts need to spell out what each individual can and will do.

     To function at a high performance level,  volunteers should also have regularly-scheduled group meetings, individual written job descriptions, and a permanent agenda item of “Are we meeting our job descriptions and how should they be upgraded as we go forward?”

     Leadership and accountability  require designation of project leaders and a volunteer coordinator, plus a “buddy system” orientation arrangement for introducing new group members. Rewards (e.g., expense grants, certificates, academic credits, extra training opportunities, news release coverage, commendation letters), and attention to the process that evolves are all critical ingredients in making volunteer group leadership work.    

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Hal@Businessworks.US  302.933.0116 or comment below.

Thanks for visiting. Go for your goals, and God bless you!

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