Jun 16 2011


Not “Pie-eyed” intoxicated


. . .Pie-eyed as in bleary


from studying


 too many pie-charts!


Actually, if you have this ailment, you are either reading too much of USA TODAY, or you are reading too much into your competition.

Try the following exercise on behalf of the entrepreneurial professional practice or small business that you own or operate or manage or partner with. It will give you an “Aha!”

  • First, draw a pie. Whatever kind you like is fine. Next draw a slice that approximately represents what you think is your business or professional practice share of the primary market you’re engaged in (SOM, as corporate biggies call it).

  • Do something to highlight it: color, fill it in, draw your favorite fruit into it, add crumbs or a topping if you want.

  • If your slice is too small to fit any decorative ingredients, put an arrow off to the side that shows your sliver and decorate your arrow (or if the sliver is simply a reflective glint off the pie tin, you may want to consider closing down and trying some other business . . . or there’s always government work that requires no pies and no thinking).   

  • Next, assuming you do have a reasonable or promising piece of the pie in front of you, take an educated guess at what you imagine the sizes of the other market portion slices that each of your key competitors controls.

  • Draw in and label those slices. Are you still with me, or have you been nibbling?

  • Now stand back (or lean back) and take a good, hard look at this pie. It’s a graphic representation of the market your business is in. What’s going on in the middle?

  • Scribble a little tornado into the dead center of the pie, overlapping all the tips of all the slices. That is where everyone in your market is killing each other, fighting to get a bigger share.


Just think about how much time and energy and money is spent in that little area of commotion. That little battlefield becomes so consuming and wasteful that many business owners and managers fail to see what else is happening.

Pay attention for a minute to what’s outside the pie (the box, the bun). What do you see? Endless space? More pies?

Have you, in other words, been staring at one star in the sky and not noticing the rest of the solar system? Or beyond? Have you been focused on one tree and ignored the forest? How about just concentrating on your one slice and seeing only what else is in the pie? There is a limit to the amount of toppings you can add, you know.

So why not (are you ready for this?) . . .

e–x–p–a–n–d—– t–h–e—– p–i–e—–?—–?—–?

What happens to your SOM when you make the pie larger? Yes, yes, the competition grows bigger too. But are you in business to succeed or to kill your competition? When you are the entity responsible for making the pie bigger, you are also going to capture the lion’s share of the increased market because you are the one opening the floodgate.

Instead of we’ve got better stuff and we’ve got cheaper stuff and we provide better service deals, what about looking around to see how many prospects there are out there who do not own or use ANY of your existing market products or services, and then take the high road that “We want EVERYone to experience this type of market offering!” 

Not sure? Call or email me. I love making pies bigger. Yum! Happy weekend. See you Saturday!  


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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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Apr 10 2010

Are YOU really worth “an arm and a leg”?

“Start savin’ your


toenails, kid!”


     Growing up, my father always told me things were too expensive by saying “they cost an arm and a leg.”

     Heaven forbid, I used to think, that we should ever willfully exchange body parts for materialistic possessions! Unless of course hair, and toe and fingernails suddenly blast the roof off the commodities market, and can be traded in collector jars or Ziploc bags for cars, flat screen TVs, Wii programs, iTunes, and sushi hand-rolls.

     But remembering the exaggerated childhood lesson in economics, I am prompted to raise the question: Am I really worth what I charge? I look around me and see a zillion other businesspeople, who haven’t a fraction of my hard-earned experience, charging outrageous fees for services they clearly haven’t a clue about, like strategic marketing and leadership development (or HRD, or CRM, or SEO, whatever those are).

     I see even more zillions of people who are self-proclaimed writers (minus of course the ability to communicate) or “social media experts” (can you believe even: “Twitter Coaches”?), yet when I weigh my worth, I rationalize that I write as well if not better than many of those over-the-top-paid authors out there. And only God knows about the rah-rah Twitter Coaches? (And the crowd roared: “FF, RT, Give ’em a Tweet and break their feet!”).

     It gets tiring to be so overloaded with pinkie finger talent and only be getting 35-cents an hour. So what’s the answer? Wayne Dyer? Zig Ziglar? How many dollars have you spent buying quick-fix books, tapes, pyramid marketing schemes, CDs, instant cash programs, seminars, webinars . . . huh? And who’s making money on whom? 

     Oh, and a great interview the other night on Delaware TV with a man (who looked like he was wearing Salvation Army clothes) captioned “Avid Gambling Fan.” The slot machine puller noted how wonderful more casinos would be because “it’s a great way to be able to donate to charity and not pay taxes.” 

     The point is that you’re worth to others whatever you think you’re worth to yourself, and if your life is all about thinking you’re worth 35-cents an hour, you are! If you are so blind as to see slot machines and casinos as your savior, you are surely headed back to the Salvation Army for a full wardrobe. Wayne and Zig? They have plenty of right answers, but your brain has to be open and receptive enough to gain their value.

     Twitter Coaches? Pfffffft! Good luck! The answer about what you’re really worth is in your spirit. It’s in your attitude. It’s what you believe about you. And all of that is a choice. So stop sitting around choosing to drag yourself down when you can just as easily choose to pull yourself up? Hmmmmm? That’s maybe a better question. 


               Comment below or Hal@BusinessWorks.US Thanks for visiting. Go for your goals! God Bless You! Make it a GREAT Day! 

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