Sep 14 2013

Leading Followers and Following Leaders

When Followers Lead Leaders


You think only a weak leader would step aside when followers close rank and try to take over? Maybe you’ve seen too many wild-eyed-pirate-and-rats-desertion-of-sinking-ship themed movies. You may want to revisit your thinking because in a lot more than some cases, stepping aside is an indication of truly superior and truly successful leadership!

There are probably as many avenues to leadership roles as there are leaders, yet none of them reflects the inherent strength-of-leadership qualities of authenticity and transparency as –like raising world-class children— being able to move confidently out of the way when followers (or your kids) take up the flag and charge forward with it.

No one ever said that being a parent or playing a parental role in business and professional practice development would be easy. In fact, parenting of any kind may well be among the hardest of life challenges. On the heels of committing to the ongoing practice of nurturing and investing in self-responsibility, personal and career parenting is certainly job one.

Why would self-development come first? Because if you cannot be true to yourself, you cannot be true to others. If you don’t know and aren’t continually searching out what makes you tick, you can’t possibly be in a position or mindset to lead others. If you don’t value your self and appreciate your own strengths and weaknesses, how can you measure and guide others?

When followers lead leaders, it may be because the leaders have faltered or it may be because the leaders have thrived on showing the way, on lighting the path, on motivating others to see that light AND the path, and on stepping out and onto it.

Weak leaders work at keeping followers following.

Truly great leaders

inspire followers to become leaders.


Which are you? Which are you becoming? Where are you aiming? What’s your target? Your goal? Your objective? How will you get there? The more you help others to grow as leaders, the more you grow as a leader. And since all of this swirls around what you think and how you behave, it’s worth remembering that thoughts and behaviors are a choice.

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Thanks for visiting. Go for your goals!

Make today a GREAT Day for someone! 

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Nov 30 2011

No one you can really talk to?

When it gets lonesome at the top… 

Are you talking 


to your SELF?



Those who talked to themselves were once considered out of step with reality, and those who out-loud answered their own questions were thought to be in urgent need of psychoanalysis… or a straitjacket.. perhaps even a lobotomy, like in the gruesome 1450s in England. But today? You’re in luck!

Judge-and-jury assessments like this obviously don’t include entrepreneurs. After all, you probably talk to yourself at least hourly, and carry a lifetime reputation for being crazy. I mean, how else could you still be good enough to be in business in this staggering leaderless economy?

When you decide to become an entrepreneur,

you necessarily choose to also become your

own (often lonesome) sounding board.  


You should know, by the way, I’m not trying to put a damper on your rants and raves and ongoing mutterings. Those activities, in fact, can be stress-reducing in and of themselves, and serve the purpose of clearing your head — something like a wet retriever shaking off water while standing on your foot! (Had that experience, eh?)

What I am suggesting is that you add to your self-talk repertoire, a bunch of other self-oriented and self-focused actions — like trusting your SELF and appreciating your SELF and recognizing your SELF-uniqueness.

Yeah, but that borders on being selfish, doesn’t it? And don’t we all know that selfish behavior is not a good thing for society, our planet, our personal long-term value? Absolutely. But I’m not speaking of self-aggrandizement. I am addressing the basic life and business success need — to be oriented toward one’s SELF.

Calling it selfish or not doesn’t matter. It’s what your purpose and intentions are all about that really count. When we can be oriented toward our selves in our thoughts and actions, we can be –among other things– more aware of the needs of others, and how we might best be able to help meet or fill those needs in addition to our own.

Selfishness in this respect also tips our internal scales in favor of a more improved, more productive and balanced state of mental and emotional health.

The more we appreciate and value our SELVES and our uniqueness’s, the more we tend to respect the uniqueness’s of others, and the more effective we can become at improving our pathways toward self-sufficiency, self-determination, and the all-important life quality that traditional schools fail to teach: self-esteem.

So the thin line to walk is being able to keep humility and let go of egotism while nurturing self-respect and fostering self-development through increased self-awareness. A high-wire act? If you choose to make it difficult on your self, it is… and it will be. But the choice is yours. And NOW is the time to act! Good luck!


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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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Jan 05 2011

Self-Motivation (Part 1 of 2)

Giddy-up Gone?


Talking to yourself


too little too late?



Have you been secretly worried about talking to (and even with) yourself? Has it crossed your mind that you were becoming one of those “men-with-the-white-jacket-are-coming” basket cases? Take heart! Yes-sir-reebob!

You are, instead, probably (notice I leave a little squeeze room for those of you on the cusp) about as normal as blueberry pie. Actually, the worrying part is what hangs your mind in the balance. In other words, if you have to worry, worry about your worrying!

Bottom line is that all of us talk to and with ourselves (no,I am not referring to those who spend hours a day at it). We do this because verbal expression (like a pilot reciting her or his checklist out loud before taxiing onto the runway) serves to clarify and enhance, and prompt focus. I never knew a good writer who didn’t speak out loud what she or he had written before calling it “a wrap.”

“So, self, here we go. It’s time to share one of life’s great secrets.”

“Okay, I’m game. Let’s hear what your J.K.Rawling/Dan Brown tangled web of mysticism can reveal for all us normal folk who chatter away at ourselves in cars, closets, beds, and walking down the street.”


Hey, I don’t know much about

Harry Potter’s chambers or DiVinci’s codes,

but I discovered 35 years ago that “self-talk

motivates, heals, humors, and strengthens.

Not sure? I’ll give you a quickie to try –improvise as you see fit to adapt it for yourself. I’ll also offer you a pack-on promise that if you say and repeat what’s below (or your own version) out loud, to yourself, like you truly mean it (even when you don’t feel up to it) three times a day, every day, for 21 days, you will be happier, healthier and more productive.

You will feel better!

( . . .and it’s free; in fact, you’ve nothing to lose but stress and upsets; how hard is that to argue with?)

Recite/Chant it exercising, or laying down, or standing on your head while spitting wooden nickles. Do it any time or place (except driving or operating heavy equipment, or with drugs or alcohol in your system). Concentrate on each word as you say it. It works. Period. Free. No charge. Me to you. Make it happen:

Healing energy into my body.

Healing energy into my body.

Stress and pain and tension out of my body.

Stress and pain and tension out of my body.

I am my body — left, right, center. (and think it!)

I am my body — left, right, center. (and think it!)

I am relaxed, happy, alert, and weigh the weight I want to weigh.

I am healthy, wealthy, painfree, safe and sound, and physically fit.

Today (“Tomorrow” when reciting at night) is the first day of my new life and I’m going to make (“am making” when reciting midday) it count.

I will make today (tomorrow) special for someone!   

All the great motivational and self-development gurus who ever lived share and practice similar methods. . . from Brian Tracy to Napoleon Hill and Wayne Dyer.

Try Zig Ziglar’s prescribed daily morning ritual recitation which starts with two hand claps as soon as you open your eyes in the morning:

(Clap, Clap) “Oh, boy, what a GREAT day to wake up and get going! I believe something wonderful is going to happen to me today!” 

Saying it like you mean it, from your heart, and concentrating on each word is –again– the key to success. Doing it consistently even when you would rather sleep or eat or play games on your computer, is your insurance policy that it will indeed produce results.

I am assuming of course that you ARE interested in producing results?

TOMORROW: Self-Motivation (Part 2 of 2)

– Same time, same channel.

# # # 

931.854.0474 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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Dec 21 2010


When you finally slow down for


(or from) the weekend,





No need to explain why. You already know all the economy, industry or profession, marketplace and competition reasons.

So let’s get to the heart of it. Use this slow-down-time period to step back, adjust your glasses, put your hands on your hips, stretch, yawn, take some deep breaths, and defragment — put all the pieces out on the table.


Start with your business . . .

What’s been going on these past few months? Weeks? Where’s your business now, and where’s it headed?


Management? Strategies?  Communications? Budgets? Investors? A/R? A/P? Cash flow? Payroll? Other overhead? Reimbursements? Taxes? Revenues? Charitable donations? Profits? Accounting systems? Bookkeeping services? Add your own here: _____________________  


Management? Strategies? Communications? Equipment? Supplies? Storage? Shipping? Inventory? Warehousing? Operating systems? Work flow? Scheduling? Purchasing? Leases? Legal actions? IT? Add your own here: _______  _________________________________   


Management? Strategies? Communications? Branding? Sales? (Yes, sales is a function of marketing.) Public and community and investor and industry relations (Also all marketing functions, including news releases, special events, blogs, BUZZ)? Advertising (another function of marketing, including online, traditional and direct media . . . as well as the creation and production of all of it) Pricing? Packaging? Promotion? Merchandising? Social media? Add your own here: _____________________________  


Management? Strategies? Communications? Benefit programs? Customer Service? Referral values? Recruitment? Hiring and firing? leadership, teamwork and skills development training? Performance incentives? Motivational programs? Add your own here: _____________________________


[So you noticed those 3 primary targets for each category, huh? Well, in my experience, poor management, poor (or no) strategies, and poor communications have consistently been the primary reasons for business failure!]


That should give you a place to start. When you’ve exhausted your business thinking, switch gears to your SELF.


What’s been going on these past few months/weeks  with YOU? Where are you now, and where are you headed?



Are you squeezing in enough exercise every week to keep yourself in decent shape? You need not lift or jog for three hours a day and eat powered protein shakes with 37 raw eggs for breakfast in order to stay physically fit.

Many experts say 3 hours a week of brisk walking and avoiding overdoses of red meat and fatty foods will suffice for most people with busy schedules. Are you getting routine medical and dental health checkups as recommended? What do you need to do to motivate yourself in these directions?  


Are you spending enough quality time with children, parents, spouse or significant other and (get your finger out of your throat!) your in-laws? How can you combine some time-consumers more productively? Walk with family members or friends. Partner up for health tests (easier to deal with when you have company).

Get serious about sharing healthy food preparation ideas, recipes, and meals. Small specialty of handmade gifts and handwritten thank you notes work wonders as relationship cement. Add your own ideas here: ____________________


Surely you know what you need to do in these categories to defragment yourselfand move forward with the adventures in creative expression and self and academic learning that you’ve always wanted to fit into your life, but never chose to make the room for. Now’s your chance to choose, and blame it on me!

The more you can learn about yourself, the better you’ll be as a leader and coach and role model . . . the better prepared you’ll be to inspire and motivate others to productivity and peak performances. Choose to make yourself make room for this. 


Weekend time slow-down periods are the perfect times to reevaluate and make commitments to yourself.

No, not token promises that never happen. Get serious here for a minute.

You have only one life, and the rest of it starts the minute you leave this blog post, so how about making the rest of your life make the kind of difference you’ve only ever dreamed of?

Hey, what’s to lose by trying?


 # # #

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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Oct 28 2010

“Down To The Wire” BUSINESS

Tense situations with


unpredictable outcomes


not just in sports and politics!


“Coming down to the wire” (an expression that originated, with apologies to Neil Young’s song, in horse-racing) in the completion of a major event or decision to be made, is clearly a hate/love situation.

It can often be so stressful that we tend to become consumed with the impending results and implications, to the point of ignoring the present moment… in business, as well as sports and politics.

It’s understandable if you’ve run a marathon –mental or physical– that thoughts of the finish line might flood your consciousness in the last mile or two. A winning run, goal, set, knockout punch, or touchdown being within reach can likewise dominate one’s mind to the exclusion of other awareness’s… in business, as well as sports and politics. 

Yet, it is in these final days, hours, minutes, and ticks of the clock, that most victories are lost to the shifting sands of one’s mind . . .

The doctor’s report. A sales closing? Membership acceptance. The monthly cash flow analysis? The stock market bell. The punchline of your presentation? Test results. A loan application? The required signature. News coverage? The merger. Union demands? Graduation. An industry award? Tough new customer specs. Add your own here _____. You get the idea.  


HOW to avoid last-minute meltdowns, and rise above the temptations to think too far ahead (which may be less than one minute’s worth of time!) at the exact point when we need most to pay close attention?

# # #


BREATHE IN THE PRESENT. You’ve heard this from me incessantly–because it works! I’ll spare you the details if you’re an elite athlete or are taking yoga. But, for everyone else, please follow this link and please take some deep breaths

Many hundreds of former college and university students and management training program participants have reported (voluntarily) that this was the single most valuable skill they ever learned in their lives!

It’s free and it will take only one minute of your time to put it to work. It will soothe your neurological system, enhance your performance, increase your self-control, and make you feel better. You could ask for anything more?

# # #


FOCUS ON THE PRESENT. Pinch yourself! Quietly reach for your heart or check your pulse as a reminder of the most immediate thing happening in your life right this very minute (in addition to breathing, of course).

Have you a watch or mobile device you can set to chime at appropriate reminder times when you might ordinarily drift off? If you turn your wristwatch inward, you’ll need to make more of a conscious effort to check the time. Devise your own ways to trick yourself. A miniature reminder sticker on your watch or mobile device can be a mental face slap.

# # #


SELF-TALK THE PRESENT. Send messages from your brain to your body to keep your hands flat on the table and your feet from jittering. Remind yourself to stop playing with hair, moustache, paperclips, pens, pencils, cellphone, rubber bands …remind yourself to smile and be attentive, to listen more and talk less, to take notes even though you don’t think you need them. The act alone of taking notes will keep you tuned in.



HELP SAVE THE ECONOMY. . . Support those who endorse free market competition healthcare and REAL job creation tax incentives for America’s entrepreneurs! 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ or 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!

5 responses so far

Oct 18 2010

Is Your Business An Illusion?

Walking Through Illusion


A book by Betsy Otter Thompson


An unpaid-for (can you believe it?) book review


As you know if you’ve stopped by here any time over the last few years, I don’t do paid endorsements or reviews of products. services, productions, publications, or ideas.

On very rare occasions, I offer unsolicited recommendations for a product, service, person or organization if I think there’s a real value opportunity connection for small business owners, entrepreneurial leaders or sales professionals.

Even less often than rarely I entertain a review request, though never by a total stranger. But I’ve also always taught that there are no rules in business. So here, dear blog visitor (ta-ta-ta-ta-tah-tah), is a rule breaker for your consideration:  



In Walking Through Illusion, her sixth book, author Betsy Otter Thompson has written a unique self-help paperback (241 pages; published 2010 by O Books, Winchester, UK, and Washington, USA; $19,95US; ISBN 978-84694-292-1).

I heartily recommend this disarming series of short stories for those seeking an insightful and provocative guide and chapter-by-chapter worksheet approach to introspection, to spiritual self-development and examination.

It’s something to carry in your briefcase

or tote bag and give your business

waiting time –and your life– new meaning.


The author takes readers along a bold new path of thinking, using the fascinating premise of a series of Q&A sessions with Jesus! Yes, yes, I know — as a business owner, entrepreneur or sales professional, you turn your head at the suggestion, right?

Maybe you say something like:“I’m not interested in making time to read a religious treatise when I’m busy trying to help my business survive this economy.”  Or “I’m not even Christian!” or “I go to great lengths to keep religion OUT of my business.” Hmmm? Sound familiar? Or am I just imagining?

Well, I can only offer the suggestion that it is possible that you could be wrong.

This book is–first of all — not a religious tome as much as it is a spiritual hand-holder into the spiritual self of you, the reader, and an opportunity to see a positive new perspective of what your real self is all about.

Now if you’ve seen even a few of my blog posts, you know that I am constantly crusading about the business success importance of perpetually working to know more and understand more about what makes you tick as a prerequisite to dealing more effectively with others — in sales, customer service, operations, and in all forms of leadership.

This book can help you discover,

and take action . . . and think.


Walking Through Illusion can be the vehicle you’ve been seeking to help you explore, better understand, and motivate yourself to adjust and achieve your goals . . . to make a positive difference on this planet.

What have you got to lose? Twenty bucks? Ha! You probably spent that on something dumb this week, right?

Hey, Happy Walking! or 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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Aug 17 2010

Why Twitter beats Facebook for business!

Twitter is for extroverts.


Facebook is for introverts.


 Businesses can’t be introverts.


According to Google, there are now well over 500 million Facebook users. According to anyone engaged in social media, Facebook is an IN-bound media vehicle. This means simply that visitors, friends, customers and prospective customers must come to you to visit your profile, your friends, your photos, your comments, your network, your “wall.” All good stuff if that’s what you seek.

Interestingly, Google also reported at the same time, that there have been over 20 billion (with a “b”) Tweets (message postings) on Twitter. Again, according to social media gurus, Twitter is (conversely to Facebook) considered an OUT-bound media vehicle. This means Twitter users are reaching out to the world with their Tweets instead of (like Facebook users) trying to bring the world to them

If you run a small business (unless it’s minuscule, and caters, for example, exclusively to a neighborhood), odds are that Twitter represents a better investment of time for marketing some aspect of your business than Facebook. Yes, Facebook affords an additional personal touch for many businesses, and there’s nothing wrong with using both when you can afford the luxury of time.

But consider this:

If you already have a website, you already have an IN-bound media vehicle, and it’s one over which you have total control… and you can personalize it as much as you choose, including being able to orchestrate ongoing discussions, exchanges and commentary, even in fact as much as Facebook, if not more.

For healthy and maximally-productive promotion of your business:

  • Focus your energy on developing your own website with your own blog (or have somebody write one for you because the more active your blog is the more activity your site generates and the farther up you move in search engine rankings).

  • Realize that your website will never and should never be done. Accept the fact that the best websites are those that continue to change and reflect the changes in the business and industry or profession they target and the marketplaces they cater to.

  • Supplement your ongoing site development efforts with ongoing investments of time and creative energy in launching ongoing Twitter Tweets.

  • Avoid getting snookered by all the social media and Twitter “experts” out there of which there are probably a hundred trillion or so (and these are probably mostly people who spend all day at it and so proclaim themselves advisors, coaches, consultants, and pros). 

  • Learn the best mix the same way you learned your business — trial and error, and maybe enlist some trusted, proven experience businesspeople who are top marketing writers with a creative flair who can help you get started, or re-started.

So, you can just barely find me on Facebook only because I like to keep in touch with family and friends, but not because I have the need to spend hours “socializing” on the Web or because I think Facebook will help my business. It won’t. I look at my page every few months; that’s a clue. 

You can  find me on Twitter every night because I have built a very selective following of people who are interested in business and marketing and leadership and selling and self-development and communications and creative writing. When those people like what I have to say on Twitter, they visit my blog.

When they like my blog, they visit my other sites. When they like what’s on my sites, they call or email me and that’s how I build a prospect and customer base. In other words, use Twitter as your outbound vehicle (combined with emails and ads or whatever you choose) to get visitors to your inbound vehicle, your website. Why shuffle people into Facebook as an extra step to visit your website?

Shuffled visitors often fall by the wayside.

Don’t you?  


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!

One response so far

Aug 08 2009


So you had bad toilet training


as a child. So what?


     Imagine what this world would be like  without hidden agendas. Okay, maybe you can’t change the world. Imagine what your business would be like without hidden agendas? Your life?

“Man is not totally at the mercy of either his heredity or his environment, He can modify both.” It starts with increasing “a person’s awareness of the real power he has to direct his own life, to make decisions, to develop his own ethical system, to enhance the lives of others, and to understand that he was born to win.” 

Excerpts from the Preface of BORN TO WIN by Muriel James and Dorothy Jongeward

     Here’s the deal:  Psychological “game-playing” (often unconsciously provoked) has been defined by psychology icons Dr. Eric Berne and Dr. Frederick Perls as a series of transactions or communication exchanges (often repetitive) with a hidden motive or agenda.

     These “game” exchanges,  which may seem innocent and perfectly rational on the surface, can have extremely destructive mental and emotional consequences. “They prevent honest, intimate and open relationships” at home and on the job, say author/therapists James and Jongeward.

     They go on  to point out that we “wear many masks and have many forms of armor” that keep our true selves confined and unknown, even to ourselves. The possibility of encountering our own reality–learning about ourselves– can be “frightening and frustrating.”

     Many of us,  say James and Jongeward, “expect to discover the worst” when we set out on a path of self-exploration, “and a hidden fear lies in the fact that we may also discover the best.”

     To discover the worst  means we must “face the decision of whether or not to continue in the same patterns” of behavior, they say, and “To learn the best is to face the decision of whether or not to live up to it.”

     Because either discovery  may involve change, it is anxiety-provoking, which can be good or bad, depending on how we use the information and exercise the change.

     It all comes down to  making a conscious choice to learn more about what makes you tick so you can minimize game-playing, recognize it in others and not play, be better able to generally run a healthier more productive business… and experience a healthier and happier personal life in the process.

     What have you got to lose?  Finding out you had bad toilet training when you were three years-old? So what? Choose to make the reality of your present moment your focus, and watch the joy that comes to the surface, and stays! 

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Input aways welcome: (”Businessworks” in    subject line) or comment below. Thanks for visiting. Go for your goals, good night and God bless you! halalpiar  

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Jun 23 2009

Continental Airlines. United Technologies. Lessons for Small Business.


–Continental Airlines





–United Technologies


     I’ve never been a big fan of Continental since they lost my business presentation luggage 14 years ago (note, by the way, how long we harbor ill feelings about a bad customer experience!).

     In all fairness, though, I must confess that Continental’s branding line stands head and shoulders above all others in the airline industry.

     In fact, “WORK HARD. FLY RIGHT.” actually serves to set a best practices philosophical mark for small business to emulate. Doubts? What small business have you ever heard of that couldn’t stand to improve itself by working hard and flying right?

     How about ANY business for that matter? And, while we’re at it, might we also want to consider application of “WORK HARD. FLY RIGHT.” to any PERSON? Just imagine what a pleasant and productive world this would be if we could all live by these four words.

     Not good enough to get you cranked up?

     Okay, how about adding four more words that come from a great corporate campaign of old for United Technologies: “OPEN MINDS. OPEN DOORS.”

     So there you have it. Put ’em together and what have you got? 8 words that can literally reverse global economic woes, change the world’s governments and politics for the better, and produce increased, ongoing opportunities for cooperation, growth, success, and universally happier existences.

     Sounds great but how do you start? By getting started. At home. In your own office. On your own work site. With your SELF:




     Start now. Tonight. Tomorrow morning. 8 Words. Write them on paper and tape them to your computer screen, cellphone. desk drawer, briefcase, rear-view mirror, medicine cabinet, ceiling fan, wristwatch, your son’s forehead! Watch what happens. You will astonish yourself. I guarantee it!  

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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!

One response so far


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