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There's something so inspiring watching the world's greatest athletes push the limits of physicality. Regardless of the sport in which they're competing, the key to most competitors' success goes well beyond the physical: it starts with their mindset, too. They think and act in a certain way before ever stepping onto a track, diving into a pool, or running onto a field.
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During a recent vacation, I vastly reduced the hours I worked on my business. My engagement started to drop, as did my leads and ultimately my revenue. It made me feel like crap, a feeling which lingered for a solid 48 hours before I got my sh*t together.
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Investors are presented with a barrage of marketing material from funds and managers trying to raise capital, and what all these reports have in common is that they all focus on performance. That is not surprising considering the relatively large number of funds available with the few strategies being used, managers feel they can only differentiate themselves through performance.
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As information technology's development accelerated, the investment industry took notice and began developing systems that would automate formerly manual tasks. Over time these systems have evolved into something more. Unfortunately many firms have not properly implemented and managed their systems.
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Gossip. It happens in every workplace and in every family. For some reason, we just love to talk about others. Perhaps it makes us feel better about ourselves, and maybe it reassures us that no one is perfect. Whatever the case, it can make for some pretty interesting lunch conversation.
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Organizational best practices are becoming a driving force behind the transparency movement and a way for firms to lend greater weight to their performance.
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We've all heard the phrase, "Why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free." That's the premise here. Why would someone pay for your services when you are giving your best advice without charging for it? We need to strike a balance between showcasing the highlights of our services while also charging a set dollar figure for the real meat.
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Of course you're p*ssed -- people are taking advantage of you and not compensating you fairly (or at all). It's frustrating to put your heart and soul into your business only to have nothing to show for it financially.
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When you climb into a rollercoaster car, you relinquish full control. The safety apparatus comes down across your torso and you begin your ascent up an endless incline. Then come the ups and downs that seem to go on forever as you hang on tight. When you are in business, you can't always control the peaks and valleys.
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Many professionals emphasize networking and strategies to build networks, however, there is little focus on network maintenance. The best networks are the ones we can call on for support when needed. For example, are we comfortable asking for a favour from someone we spoke to once at a party a year ago? In this case, the quality of the relationship is more important than the number of contacts in the address book.
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I receive requests that are gross and slimy. You know the type -- "It would be mutually beneficial to our businesses for us to have a meeting." No, it wouldn't. It would be beneficial to you to get free info from me and/or for you to try and sell me something I don't need. And hey, I'm not knocking the hustle. But be honest about it and save us both some time.
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Awards season is upon us. If you've avoided the online discussions about red carpet fashion over the past few weeks, consider yourself in the minority. Whether or not you're a fan of the inevitable musical montages, the teary speeches and the awkward presentation banter, there's a lot that businesses can learn from awards season.
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Two entrepreneurs walk into a meeting and ask, "How was your weekend?" No, this isn't the start of a bad joke -- it's something I encounter working with fellow business owners who work around the clock. The truth is, when the seeds of our labour start to bear fruit, we're hit with a new challenge -- time (or lack thereof).
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If your videos are bad, it's very hard for your business to be perceived as professional. Bad quality video is actually proven to negatively affect brand perception.
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Just in time for small business month, I wanted to share these stories of entrepreneurs you might not know, but who are all harnessing online commercial opportunities to build thriving businesses and making their mark on the Canadian economy.
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What I didn't expect about my adventures are the lessons I learned that I could incorporate into my everyday business life; tools for managing stress, dealing with conflicting personalities, budgeting, and organizing time. Here's why taking a break will give you insights that will help you enjoy it even more.
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When I started my business, my purpose was clear: to leverage my communications skills in order to become wealthy. I learned that unexpected things happen along the way and I needed to live by some non-negotiable beliefs if I was to be happy in my work. So, three decades later I am still learning. This is where I've learned thus far.
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Getting ready for a successful pitch involves much more than planning what you are going to say, it involves planning the WOW-factor your presentation will provide. You also need to listen to what your audience has to say. It's a dialogue, not a performance.
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As we get busier and take on more tasks and challenges just to get by, we are increasingly finding comfort in many icons of our time who tell us that failing is ultimately the best way to learn and move forward. They say that we must celebrate our strengths and weaknesses and not worry about how others judge us.
So often people exchange business cards and never contact each other. Or they add each other on LinkedIn and the networking dies there. Remember you are building a relationship and you want to be memorable. Following up is critical to making networking work effectively. In fact, by following up you are setting yourself apart from most networkers.
There are various methods in which content marketing can work for businesses in virtually any industry, with the information provided in a variety of formats. You can either do this in-house, or hire professional content creators in a variety of mediums to do this for you. Here are some ideas that could work for you.
Board governance is becoming more and more stringent with each passing year and each new securities scandal (hello Sarbanes-Oxley!). The potential liability of individual board members increases the pressure on them to ensure there is accountability to shareholders and regulators.
My life has been "busy" and a lot of work for quite some time now, and that's something I don't want to change. I still take the necessary time to unplug and fill myself and my family up, but cannot deny that I also thrive off of creating and growing in business. That will likely always be part of me, even with a new baby at my side. My work is very much tied into what I want to create for my family to benefit from. I have complete respect for the women who grow up with a complete focus on wanting to stay home and raise a family... but for me, part of what I want to represent to my children is showing them that they have the ability to "have it all."
Ten years ago when I started my MBA, I pulled up to the school thinking that everyone inside of it would be douchey. They were business people, after all, and all business people were either bullies or scammers of some sort. I was sure that I would be the only half decent reformed bully there. Turns out, I was the douchey one for assuming the worst of them. And the time of the bully has passed.
You know you need to innovate in order to stay viable, but you have limited time and money to do so. So when you have a brainstorming session for your team you want it to be focused and be able to produce results. After teaching improvisation and team-building sessions to businesses for years, I thought I'd share six ways to rock your next brainstorming session (while keeping your sense of humour intact).
I often find that "newbies" don't spend enough time digging deep to unravel who their ideal customer is. Without doing the necessary due diligence of working out exactly who your target audience is, your business is doomed before it even starts.
As humans being, we're hardwired to engage with a good story. That's how we learn as children and that's how we continue to enjoy learning as adults. If you ask any advertising expert and they'll tell you that a good story can sell pretty much any product. Storytelling can also help a business retain clients and sell more of their products, but few businesses tap into the power of storytelling. Don't make that mistake.
No matter how great things seem to be going, you never stop marketing. It needs to be a constant hum because if that hum stops, you know there will be a big problem ahead. I stopped marketing because I thought I had all the clients I needed. Over the years I've seen others make the same mistake but for different reasons. Here are a few.
Pre-internet designers would traditionally either need a large company behind them or would have to settle for selling locally. These days the internet has leveled the playing field while also forcing designers to become multi-talented small business owners. The rules have changed.
Having a video these days is key to expanding your brand and increasing client retention. Just think of what you prefer when you land on a site -- how many videos do you watch that have been shared by your friends. To boost your bottom line and drive growth, here are the 5 reasons video is essential.
The real drama for entrepreneurs is that your ability to present your product or program is directly related to you being able to remain in business! The bottom line is if you're too uncomfortable to present your business in a way that can entice potential paying clients, you're in trouble.
For me, the quintessential source of inspiration comes from where I start every morning, and that place is Starbucks. I am a Starbucks Brand Addict because they have created an environment and a brand that has me hooked. What Starbucks has done rather ingeniously, is create a Brand Ambassador out of me without me even knowing it. Here are some ways that Starbucks is doing it right and how you can learn from their holistic approach to the customer experience.