Jul 31 2011

Overcoming the odds . . .

35 years ago,


a doctor told me my back 


was so bad, I’d never


walk again. 


I bought a horse


and a jet ski!

(and my back has been better ever since!) 


Stubbornness or determination? Probably both. [And Thank God, I walk just fine.]

Stubbornness and determination represent attitudes that would get corporate muckity-mucks fired, but they’re not such terrible traits to have as an entrepreneur. Ive’ heard a lot of definitions of entrepreneurship over my years of teaching, consulting and doing it, but none sum it up as succinctly as stubbornness and determination’

We always hear that entrepreneurs have to have “fire in the belly” to pursue their ideas and make them work.

That they continue to move forward when everything around them is moving backward.

That they see the light at the end of the tunnel that others can’t even find the entrance to, or once they’re in it, slam their gearshifts into reverse.


Yet we also know that entrepreneurs historically take only reasonable risks. So the point of distinction occurs a few hundred feet into the tunnel when the light from the entrance is just about to dissolve away.

It is that moment in time that separates the courageous pursuit of free enterprise from the gutless wonders of government agency security and handout-dependent careers, and from corporate analysis paralysis treadmill careers. Entrepreneurs plod fearlessly forward as others turn and run. Sound like a military invasion? Well, isn’t it?

The enemy of entrepreneurs is lethargy and complacency. You remember that pair from your C-Span Current Affairs course? They are the two culprits that have gripped our economy since the present White House occupants took control. They are what must be overthrown if America is ever to survive and thrive again as a nation. 

The only difference in fighting this war of entrepreneurial enlightenment (vs. other, older ones) is that small business owners can no longer charge forward with their heads down. This time, we’re up against liberal fanatics who are not simply putting up roadblocks; they are actively fighting in the name of progressiveness to stop progress!

Go figure.

America’s present Administration refuses to stop short of literally pulverizing small business.

Over-taxing, over-regulating, over-burdening the very entity in society that has been solely responsible for new job creation, for economic stimulation, for boosting America’s reputation and strength worldwide . . . to what end? 


It’s not a puzzle; it’s a plan.

There are 30 million small business owners  in the United States. We have no ability to “certa bonum certamen” (fight the good fight) on our own, acting as individual small businesses. We all need to accept that the strength in numbers we are capable of can accomplish more than individual efforts.

We must vote AND prompt votes for any candidate who appreciates and respects small business owners and operators, our nation’s military people . . . and stubbornness and determination. November 6, 2012. Be there


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Hal@Businessworks.US 302.933.0116 

 Open minds open doors

 Thanks for visiting.   God bless you. 

  Make today a GREAT day for someone! 

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Jul 10 2011

The 8th Secret

Ever notice how the


number “7” is magic??


Well here, entrepreneurs,


is number 8!

With special thanks to www.Twitter.com/RealLifeSecrets for the first 7 one-word “secrets to life” — Listen, Read, Love, Fight, Believe, Live, Pray. You can follow @reallifesecrets for more.  



Okay, so: 3 wishes and 3 kings. But there are SEVEN of everything else — 7 seas, 7 habits, 7 brides, 7/11, John Elway and Mickey Mantle, The “Number of Perfection” in the Bible, so why shouldn’t there be 7 secrets of life? And why should there be anything else besides: 1) Listen, 2) Read, 3) Love, 4) Fight, 5) Believe, 6) Live, and 7) Pray?

Oh, but there is. There’s one more. Can you think of what it might be? I mean, just imagine, if you’ve done all those great seven things consistently, what else could possibly matter? What else could be so powerful? A number 8? Seriously?


We’ve learned that effective managers, salespeople and professionals typically spend 8o% of their interactive time with others: LISTENING. So that first one certainly makes sense. And except maybe for the guy who invented fire, I’ve never heard of anyone becoming truly successful without reading, as much as possible, as often as possible.

Oh, some entrepreneurs may run successful businesses and possibly even successful families without reading, but they probably are not successful with their own physical and/or emotional health. Or they may have great health and successful businesses with no satisfying family life. You get the idea. Listening and Reading are a package deal. 

Love. There’s that word. It reminds me, by the way, to suggest you check out Rob Bell’s vigorously debated new book, LOVE WINS. Besides smashing lots of theories and age-old teachings, it’s a smashing (provocative, quick, and illuminating) read. Love. So craved. So sought after. So misunderstood, So indispensable. So strengthening.


Surely, you can add your own “descriptives,” but suffice it to say that Love is certainly worthy of being one of the magical seven. Then there is “Fight.” A peculiar item on the list? Not really. My college motto in Latin: Certa Bonum Certamen” (“Fight the good fight”) — ah, yes, in that light of “Standing Tall,” who could find fault?

Believe. Well, without that, there can be little of worth remaining, true? But every true entrepreneur believes in what she or he is doing, so not much need to dwell on this one. Now: Live. This is something only a few entrepreneurs –the successful ones– actually do. Not nightly partying. Daily enjoyment of being alive.

Ah, and then there’s: Pray. If you haven’t in awhile, I recommend you get on with it — more than you think you should. If you already do this, do more. Many of the most successful business owners and managers I’ve known (of thousands) make a point of praying dozens of times each day. Not just requests. Prayers of gratitude.

[Are you thankful for your vision that allows you to read this right now? Room temperature? The chair you’re in? Your last meal? Your next? Your family?]


So you’ve labored through all this just to see what Number 8 is all about. If you haven’t yet figured it out, you won’t be disappointed. It is the one secret of life that’s joined at the hip with all the rest: Be Honest! Nothing speaks higher of your integrity, reputation, intent, and authenticity as a person.

If you seek trust, be trustworthy.  


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Hal@Businessworks.US  931.854.0474

  Open minds open doors.

 Thanks for visiting and God bless you.

   Make today a GREAT day for someone! 

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Mar 04 2010


Hold your nose


and dunk under


 the wave . . . or 


 ride it to shore!


     Surfers (not the TV channel kind!) are actually smarter than they look. They know enough to take a deep breath and either dunk under a wave to get out of the way, or stand up and ride it onto the beach. When your business cash flow is outbound, it’s time to make that same decision.

     If you choose to dunk under — like leave town, change your name, and disappear into some cave or head for the islands (until your butt’s hauled back to jail) — go for it! But prepare (at least) for a stiff neck from looking back over your shoulder 16 hours a day … maybe work for a chiropractor?

     My guess is that when payables tip the receivables scale into the stratosphere, most of us will opt for survival instead of surrender. Certa Bonum Certamen say the Latins (“Fight The Good Fight”) and giving our businesses CPR is certainly preferable to filing Chapter 11. Rule of thumb: One first aider beats a full house of lawyers.

     Okay, so where to start? Make the unpleasant calls to creditors; beg for mercy; give them (and stick to) payback plans. Stay in communication with them no matter how awkward, uncomfortable or embarrassing it feels. DO NOT borrow money to pay back loans; it will catch up with you.

     Consider reputable debt consolidation services. Fill in staff-cutback areas with interns. It’s true a recent President kind of ruined that idea, but truth is that if you’re willing to provide the proper guidance and leadership, you can literally build an empire on the enthusiasm and energy of young interns.

     The best source of interns (and usually a structured program that keeps students focused and offers employers recourse) will come from your nearest community college, though some major universities have established highly successful internship (often called “cooperative education”) programs.

     Interns will occasionally work for free, sometimes for commission or bonus arrangements, and often for minimum wage or less. They require ongoing supervision. You may have to fill out evaluation forms and meet with a faculty or administrative advisor once a semester. That’s it. If this is something you want to make work, make it work.

     If you’re a one-man-band, ask family members for hours in exchange for breakfasts or dinners out, or periodic sports or concert tickets … i-tune cards? Be creative.

     One boss I know who’s struggling to get his business back on its feet reports getting productive work hours from his cousin’s teenage son in exchange for covering periodontal work (teeth braces) not covered by insurance. He gets six months of work from another relative in exchange for new tires on two family cars.

     Be creative. Make it work. Ride it to shore!

Comment below or direct to Hal@BUSINESSWORKS.US Thanks for visiting. Go for your goals! God Bless You! Make it a GREAT DayGet blog emails FREE via RSS feed OR $1 mo Amazon Kindle. Gr8 Gift 4 GRANDPARENTS: http://bit.ly/3nDlGF

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Apr 21 2009


“Fight The Good Fight!”


(English translation)


     Now how did I know that? It’s the motto for Iona College in New Rochelle, NY, where I received my undergraduate degree. Why is it headlining tonight’s blog post? Because it’s a well-intended slogan that speaks of strength in life, but is fairly ridiculous when it’s interpreted as a call to business owner action.

     In fact, the American mindset of jam-it-down-their-throats competitiveness that rises from football fields nationwide is arguably the real root of all evil in business today. Waging war with the competition. Fighting the government. Beating up on your industry. Breaking down customer resistance. Smashing prior sales records. Kicking regulatory butts. Arguing tooth and nail.

     Are we really all that angry with what’s around us? Are we going to bed and waking up mad? Or is it all a big act? Are we covering up our true feelings? Are we blindsiding ourselves out of commission? What do all these upset-feeling words communicate? Is business really that big of a battle?

     YES. If you choose it to be. YES, if you choose to be too weak-willed to cut out your own path. YES, if you choose to think there’s no way to peaceably co-exist with other businesses. YES, if you choose to look around you and see only enemies. Everyone is NOT the enemy. Don’t choose that perception.

     You already know FDR’s famous “We have nothing to fear but fear itself” quote. We’ve even hear cartoon character Ziggy proclaim “We should enjoy here while we’re here because there’s no here there.” Yet we persist at being fearful. We invest ourselves in neurotic and paranoiac behaviors that require us to take argumentative stances in our daily dealings.

     How can you pull your spiraling business up out of this never-ending, bottomless hole of fear that things won’t work out, things won’t survive unless you do battle somewhere with something or someone, and conquer it, or her, or him, or they?

     Here’s how: You start by acknowledging that the bad choices are choices. You start by realizing it’s just as easy to choose receptivity and positiveness, and cooperation, and business alliances. It’s just as easy to join forces as to fight forces, in fact it’s easier.

     It is FEAR that’s threatening your business. And you are CHOOSING fear. Change the channel in your brain. Get rid of mental boxing, wrestling, and mixed martial arts. Get rid of non-stop news reports. Just shut ’em down. It’s a choice. Why would you choose to torture and stress yourself?

     If any news event is major enough to warrant your attention, someone in your neighborhood will come knocking at your door to tell you. In the meantime, your news fixation is paralyzing you and your business. It’s locking your brain into negativity and preventing forward motion.

     QUIT THE NEWS FOR JUST ONE WEEK! The world will not end (and in case it does, you won’t have wasted time worrying about it) and you stand to gain/re-gain consciousness. Don’t “fight the good fight” unless you mean to choose self-worth and life’s values over evil and stress. Your business needs you. Your family needs you. You need your SELF.    

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Hal@Businessworks.US or 302.933.0116

 “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!

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