Posts tagged: Action coach

What would you do differently if you had to land business … with no money?

Pity the poor corporations who try to incrementally move sales and market share with multi-million dollar ad campaigns that do little for either sales or market share (and even, for that matter the more misplaced desire of better “branding”).

What if you had no money … and still needed to get customers or clients?

Here’s an interesting article on successful ways to do just that … and all it takes is an unconventional mindset and a desire to get the most out of the very least …

Getting clients with no money …

(At ActionCOACH, we also call that value – or better yet – leverage!)

The great lesson here is that there is always a way to get something … or to get something done.

Here’s another way to think about it:  How would a big company (say a Procter & Gamble, Nike or Apple) change its advertising and marketing approach if there were no ad or marketing dollars?

Would that company get a spokesperson or run a lot of ads that weren’t tested beforehand and measured for responsiveness and actual unit sales?

Or would that company be a bit more creative and innovative and direct-response driven?

Something to think about … and some good ideas from others who have “gone before you” and who have done just exactly that.

Who knows?

You just might find the best way to get more business … is to act as if you had nothing to work with – and start your own thinking and planning and strategy straight from there.

Jodie Shaw

Women in Leadership … Power in Numbers?

The International Women’s Forum was founded in the 1980’s to give women in positions of leadership a way to share knowledge, best practices and ideas.

Here’s some numbers that are interesting in terms of women in executive and leadership positions that the organization discovered in a survey several years ago …

(WARNING:  This may contradict your pre-conceived notions of commonly held statistics of women in the workplace) …

1) Women in leadership roles earn the same amount of money as their male counterparts (most studies show a substantial gap in earnings between the two).

2) Women in leadership roles have a higher overall household income than those of their male counterparts.

3) Women are more likely to use “transformational” leadership models in their leadership styles (meaning they are more likely than men to transform individual self-interests into the goals of the organization).

4) Women who describe themselves as “feminine” or “gender-neutral” report a higher rate of effectiveness than those who describe themselves as “masculine.”

5) Approximately 67% of women leaders are married (a higher percentage cited here than other studies, which report only 40% to 50% of women are married).

We hear so much about how women are slighted in leadership roles or who have hit the proverbial “glass ceiling” … I think the numbers above give a different perspective on the state of reality in the workplace for women versus conventional or accepted “knowledge.”

In the end, however, leadership challenges are the same for women as they are for men.

Is there a vision for the organization?

Are there resources to achieve that vision?

Is the proper team in place to reach an objective?

The difference, I think, is in how women and men see and approach these challenges.

What are your thoughts?

More on this in future posts …

JS

Action Coaching: Values … Organizational and Personal (Part 1) …

What are the values of your organization?

Have you ever thought about an organization having values?

What about your personal values?

Do they fit with your work … or your organization?

It’s interesting, but our own team has been doing a lot of work lately on recognizing and identifying values … their own and others.

I believe it is important because ActionCOACH has its own set of guiding principles we use to run our business called our “14 Points of Culture.”

If you aren’t familiar with how “Points of Culture” might look … here’s ours:

ActionCOACH‘s 14 Points of Culture

1.    Commitment
I give myself and everything I commit to 100% until I succeed. I am committed to the Vision, Mission, Culture and success of ActionCOACH, its current and future team, and its clients at all times. I always recommend products and services of ActionCOACH prior to going outside the company.

2.    Ownership
I am truly responsible for my actions and outcomes and own everything that takes place in my work and my life. I am accountable for my results and I know that for things to change, first I must change.

3.    Integrity
I always speak the truth. What I promise is what I deliver. I only ever make agreements with myself and others that I am willing and intend to keep. I communicate potential broken agreements at the first opportunity and I clear up all broken agreements immediately.

4.    Excellence
Good enough isn’t. I always deliver products and services of exceptional quality that add value to all involved for the long term. I look for ways to do more with less and stay on a path of constant and never ending improvement and innovation.

5.    Communication
I speak positively of my fellow team members, my clients and ActionCOACH in both public and private. I speak with good purpose using empowering and positive conversation. I never use or listen to sarcasm or gossip. I acknowledge what is being said as true for the speaker at that moment and I take responsibility for responses to my communication. I greet and farewell people using their name. I always apologize for any upsets first and then look for a solution. I only ever discuss concerns in private with the person involved.

6.    Success
I totally focus my thoughts, energy and attention on the successful outcome of whatever I am doing. I am willing to win and allow others to win: Win/Win. At all times, I display my inner pride, prosperity, competence and personal confidence. I am a successful person.

7.    Education
I learn from my mistakes. I consistently learn, grow and master so that I can help my fellow team members and clients learn, grow and master too. I am an educator and allow my clients to make their own intelligent decisions about their future remembering that it is their future. I impart practical and useable knowledge rather than just theory.

8.    Team Work
I am a team player and team leader. I do whatever it takes to stay together and achieve team goals. I focus on co-operation and always come to a resolution, not a compromise. I am flexible in my work and able to change if what I’m doing is not working. I ask for help when I need it and I am compassionate to others who ask me.

9.    Balance
I have a balanced approach to life, remembering that my spiritual, social, physical and family aspects are just as important as my financial and intellectual. I complete my work and my most important tasks first, so I can have quality time to myself, with my family and also to renew.

10.    Fun
I view my life as a journey to be enjoyed and appreciated and I create an atmosphere of fun and happiness so all around me enjoy it as well.

11.    Systems
I always look to the system for a solution. If a challenge arises I use a system correction before I look for a people correction. I use a system solution in my innovation rather than a people solution. I follow the system exactly until a new system is introduced. I suggest system improvements at my first opportunity.

12.    Consistency
I am consistent in my actions so my clients and team mates can feel comfortable in dealing with me at all times. I am disciplined in my work so my results, growth and success are consistent.

13.    Gratitude
I am a truly grateful person. I say thank you and show appreciation often and in many ways, so that all around me know how much I appreciate everything and everyone I have in my life. I celebrate my wins and the wins of my clients, and team. I consistently catch myself and other people doing things right…

14.    Abundance
I am an abundant person, I deserve my abundance and I am easily able to both give and receive it. I allow abundance in all areas of my life by respecting my own self worth and that of all others. I am rewarded to the level that I create abundance for others and I accept that abundance only shows up in my life to the level at which I show up.

At ActionCOACH … our Points of Culture are our guiding principles and provide context and direction for our company and our team.

When we recruit, our process is really a “de-selection” program … and it’s mainly a de-selection process on the part of the candidate.

Why?

Many people simply don’t want to be part of a company run according to a set of guiding principles.

Sometimes, other people may say they want to be part of a “principles-driven” company … but quickly discover working in a “principles-oriented” environment becomes extremely difficult – for them.

Why?

Because in truth, their own personal values are at odds with the overall values of our organization.

There’s nothing wrong with that … it’s just that those people tend to move on to other endeavours because they don’t feel our company is a good fit for them.

Now, is this type of system “perfect”?

No.

No system is.

But it does gives us a base to gauge our overall performance as an organization and also gives us and our team a way to hold people in our organization (and each other) accountable.

Because if you don’t have a company culture … a culture will develop … and the chances are very low that culture will “automatically” reflect the true values of an owner.

So how do personal values affect or influence a company’s values?

We’ll look at that in an upcoming post …

Jodie Shaw

Action Coaching: A different kind of stimulus … (Part 2)

We’ve  talked about a different kind of “job stimulus” … one based on small business leading any type of jobs-led recovery.

What I find interesting is so little value is placed on the innovative nature of small business to lead any recovery and to create jobs.

So while Washington and its policy makers struggle to figure out the true costs of all of its new found forays into the marketplace … the existing and would-be entrepreneur is struggling to figure out the costs to their own bottom-line, knowing the costs of any new policy will take some time to be absorbed.

Capital and capital formation loves certainty.

The uncertainty alone of a new pricing scheme from health care to the value of the dollar as a benchmark currency is enough to keep those would-be entrepreneurs who on the margin off the field of play …

For real recovery to take place, those are the players we need in the game.

While it’s too soon to tell if new capital is truly on strike, I hear sobering stories from those owners who by all rights have “made it.”

They are successful, they run companies with $50 million to $200 million in revenues, and they are all looking for their way out.

The exit strategy for many of them is planned before 2012 and the end of this decade’s marginal tax cuts.

One owner in Las Vegas says his decision to retire early and sail the world is strengthened every day by the bad policy decisions issuing forth out of Washington.

His shop, which does tens of millions in revenues a year, employs 18 people – 18 jobs that will be shuttered when his business voluntarily closes its doors next year.

While more coverage is generated in the media weeklies by the “ripple effect” of jobs lost than the “ripple effect” of jobs created or gained, the prevailing political class unfortunately sees “business” as an endless resource of revenues that exist only to fund endless claims and entitlements.

That’s too bad.

For the past three decades, American small business has given this country the proverbial “golden egg” of technology, innovation, job creation and best practices, leading the world in ideas, new products and results.

It’s a shame that the biggest beneficiary of small business growth in the past fifty years (and an entity that collected record-breaking tax revenues during the past decade) is actively (however mistakenly) looking to cut-off and seemingly kill-off this vital national resource.

Jodie Shaw

My “Rules of the Game” …

Okay …

… a few points for what you can expect from me in this forum …

I’ll only say or write the word “crickey” one time.

(… and that was it!).

I’ll give you my views on business, leadership, franchising and business coaching the way I share them with my team … as honestly and as unfiltered as possible.

I’ll also do my best to keep you up-to-date with the latest and greatest in online and web-based marketing and media tools, strategies, new gadgets and toys.

Not only will you soon be a master of a new domain (pun intended), you might also make your company (and yourself) more money this year than last.

Finally, I’ll interact with you as best as I can and answer any questions you may have, keeping in mind there are some topics or issues where legal or fiduciary duties may mean I disclaim upfront my generic answer (or non-answer!).

So … with that said, let’s go!

Jodie Shaw