Feb 10 2011


Juggling Seagulls?

I know, you’re an entrepreneur of some sort, and you haven’t any time for time management. But, guess what? If you haven’t any, who will?

  • Draw a bulls-eye with two fat rings around

    it and label the center circle space:


  • Next, label the innermost ring space:


  • Then label the outer ring space:



  • Copy each heading onto a separate column on a separate piece of paper. Then list the most appropriate items (names of people, places, things, activities) in each category. Allow yourself one minute per list. 

Put the list down and walk away. Get some water or a cookie or just stare out the window. (This is like a little ginger between sushi pieces.) Then return to your target and lists.

The amount of “blur” between your bulls-eye and your next two rings will indicate how “fast lane” your life is right now. I say “right now” because this is a here-and-now, present-moment exercise: what goes in each part of the target can change by next week, tomorrow, tonight, or within the next seven seconds!

(In fact, when life gets too hectic, it’s a quick useful device for daily assessment, for helping you sort out and stay focused on priorities.)


Whatever blur does occur (in other words, whatever the lack of definition there is that exists between the three areas) should give you a good heads up on how efficiently or inefficiently you are using your time, as well as the extent of your allegiances to each entity that is taking time and attention from your life.

Once you’ve done this little diagnostic study on yourself, and have a good overview of your current activities and involvements, you need to decide if these pieces are where you want them to be.

Are you spending too much time with your business and not enough with your family, for example?

Or, are you so caught up in someone else’s problem that you haven’t made time to solve your own?


I once found myself so sucked into a Chamber of Commerce project to boost town retail traffic, that I ended up working nights and weekends just to catch up with my own business (which was not retail, and stood to gain nothing from the initiative).

The crunch infiltrated my time commitments to my family. The small disruptions that surfaced were clearly the tip of cataclysmic explosion. I extracted myself from the C of C mission and discovered — lo and behold! — the retailers I was knocking myself out to promote didn’t care enough to pick up the ball for themselves.

This is NOT to suggest that voluntary community work is not worthwhile. It most certainly is. But I highly recommend such engagements be clearly defined, clearly justified, and clearly scheduled.


Plus –realistically —where choice is involved (vs., i.e., an emergency), no one should ever commit to helping others who is not herself coming from a position of strength to begin with. A sick teacher is an ineffective teacher. A cash-poor business cannot donate to charities. A business owner who’s preoccupied with family survival issues or debt collection issues cannot be an effective sales leader.

Draw your target again tomorrow. See if anything changes. Can you make something change? Well, of course. Behavior is, after all, a choice. Maybe if you choose to stop juggling one fewer seagull, it will fly away! 

  # # #


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

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

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

One response so far

Feb 09 2011

Business Thunder

How loud or quiet are


your community relations?

LOUD (high profile) community relations development counts most for:

  • Educational and healthcare-based facilities and organizations (e.g., schools, hospitals, libraries, rehab centers)
  • Professional practices (especially doctors, dentists, therapists, lawyers, and accountants).
  • Retailers of every variety, size, and description (from restaurants to auto showrooms to department stores)
  • Real estate professionals and all affiliated services
  • Religious-based organizations
  • Consumer transportation and shipping businesses)

These entities and individuals need to make positive community involvement impressions because their business interests are community-involved in direct consumer ways. They can achieve this by designing PR programs that support those communities that support their business and professional interests.

It’s called “enlightened self-interest” and it’s a good thing.

It means “enlightened” as to the perceived needs of key communities, neighborhoods, and regions, and taking a leadership posture that will produce good deeds which will ultimately produce some return on the investments of time, money and energy.

This is not the same thing as opportunism.

There is no selfishness involved.

Enlightened self-interest simply means following the awareness that the more good a business can do for the communities it serves, the more that appreciation for those good works will surface, and the more return can be realized, which ultimately allows the business to channel and contribute even more.

It’s all about demonstrating a sense of charity and coming at it from a position of strength which, in turn, makes even more charity possible. It’s hard to give meaningfully from a position of weakness. There’s nothing at all wrong with doing that; it’s simply limiting.

QUIET (low profile) community relations development counts most for:

  • Manufacturers, fabricators, and distributors
  • Home improvement services
  • Online businesses
  • B to B services (except media)
  • Personal and family services (e.g., counseling, funeral homes, home care)
  • Industrial and professional transportation and shipping businesses

These types of businesses have less need for public exposure in the community relations efforts they undertake, but no less of a need to be actively involved.

Both LOUD and QUIET community relations serve important purposes for all involved.

They can be achieved by ongoing and consistent efforts of groups, teams and individuals engaged in activities that benefit the welfare of others through guidance and participation in events, programs, sponsorships, news releases, and public stances on community-benefit positions.

There is never any shortage of needs your business can provide. Set budgets and terms for participating with matching dollar donations . . . and/or contributions of cash awards, products, services, time, facilities, contacts, equipment, and leadership.

# # #

931.854.0474 or Hal@BusinessWorks.US

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

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

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

2 responses so far

Jun 03 2009


Don’t be waiting for unions,


government, big business,


banks, or Fairy Godmothers! 


     It’s a good idea to step on the scale every once in awhile. It’s easy to let your business get too heavy from feeding it too much fat and not exercising it enough, or making sure it gets the sleep it needs. Whaaat? Well, sure: your business has a life too. The question is–since it’s YOUR business and dependent on YOUR choices–what exactly are you doing to keep it healthy and growing?

     When’s the last time you stepped outside your business and re-entered it, pretending you’ve never been there before? Just as trying to draw conclusions about your own health from just stepping on the scale, weight is merely one indicator. Many other factors need to be inventoried.

     Beyond the obvious business health ingredients, like first-impression appearances (e.g., parking, signage, displays, employees, facilities, waiting areas) and all the components like lighting, colors, cleanliness, etc., there’s a myriad of interrelated factors, issues, concerns and pursuits that warrant your assessment or reassessment.

     When, for example, did you last–or when do you next plan to–launch a new product or service program or initiative? Have you been holding back until the economy is “better”? Considering the growing evidence that that could be a very long time, could a launch delay now drag your company’s energy level down, perhaps to a point below a more aggressive market competitor? In other words, is it worth waiting?

     If you’ve already launched your exciting new Zilch-Zapper product line and support services, are they dying on the vine while you’ve preoccupied yourself with tap-dancing around your bankers and investors? There comes a point–as with humans–when a business becomes so over-burdened, so dis-stressed, that it collapses or has a stroke. Could you possibly be cultivating that kind of trauma?

     The good news is that business trauma is easily reversed. It requires only two things:

1) Recognitionthat the negative places your business health dwells in or is headed toward are the result of your conscious or unconscious choices (It’s as easy to choose to UNdo a bad choice as it is to choose to stay with a bad choice), and

2) Awareness that a burning commitment needs to be made to act on and directly treatthe diagnosis your inventory produces, and to be made by standing shoulder-to-shoulder with the immediate and long-term business healthcare and growth goals you set.

     Bottom line: If YOU don’t balance the life of your business (as well as your own… in order to grow your business from a position of strength vs. a position of weakness), who is going to balance the life of your business? Certainly not the government, unions, banks, or big business… I guess the answer kinda doesn’t leave much to the imagination. But that’s okay, because imagination is plentiful, and it’s what you need to exercise in order to get the job done. 

# # #  

Input welcome anytime: Hal@TheWriterWorks.com (”Businessworks” in the subject line) or comment below. Thanks for visiting. Go for your goals, good night and God bless you! halalpiar  # # # 

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