Over the years we’ve noticed that January tends to be a bit quiet on the networking front. People are full of New Year optimism and rightly so. It’s a new year, a new start and they don’t need any help.
Not a bean.
February comes around and things haven’t taken off too well but you know it’s still the start of the year (just) and yes they are sure (well almost sure) things will sort themselves out.
March arrives and we get a flurry of emails and phone calls with people saying one thing “I need help with sales/marketing/branding/ MAKING MONEY”
So it’s only towards the end of the first quarter of year that they actually come out to one of our events and learn skills that help them improve their business and their profits.
THAT’S ONE QUARTER OF THE YEAR WASTED!
So, let’s not repeat that mistake. It would be foolish when the tools and the experts are here to help you now. At the start of 2013.
The first meeting in Chelmsford this year was a fabulous start – Gregory Baker’s business health check and types of customer guide gave us all a lot to think about.
She spoke for us back in Oct 2012 but 50 minutes clearly wasn’t long enough for her to tell us everything she wanted to nor for you to answer all your questions. And it’s because Kubi really enjoyed the energy, passion and supportive nature of The BWN that she wanted to come back and deliver a longer, more detailed workshop.
If you run your own business, I imagine you are passionate about what you do. If I didn’t love IT and making websites then I wouldn’t do it. That’s my passion, making beautiful website that bring my clients lots of clients. Would I like to make more profit – you bet! So you know where I’ll be on 25th January – will you be there too or will you wait until March before you do something?
Book now to Turn Your Passion in to Profit
The other night, as I was taking my medicine, I reflected on how easy it was to do compare to when I first started.
The medicine in question is an immunosuppressant drug called Cyclosporin. I had a lung transplant back in 2008 (rare lung disease called Lymphangioleiomyomatosis as you’re asking – see LAM Action for more on it) and I take cyclosporin to stop my body from rejecting the lung. It’s something I’ll have to take for ever.
Anyway, when I first started taking it, it was horrible. It smells just terrible. My stomach would do cartwheels as soon as I opened the package and the only way I could take it was by holding my nose. Yes it was that bad (and remember I’ve got children so I’ve done the nappy thing!) Several times my stomach flipped so much I was actually sick and so would have to take another dose of it. (The drug was originally isolated from a fungus found in a soil sample in Norway. That might explain the smell. See Wikipedia for more if you have an interest in such things)
But as time went on, I got more and more use to taking it and now it doesn’t bother me at all. If you’re at a networking event with me then you might notice me opening my pill box and quickly taking some of the cocktail of meds that keeps me alive, but it’s no big drama. I’ve got use to it and I am quite accomplished at it now.
And yes, there’s a business lesson here (why else would I be sharing this with you?!)
Think about something you have to do in business that you really don’t like and/or feel uncomfortable doing. Well, as I dish out a bit of tough love, sometimes you just have to bite the bullet and do it.
Yes, you can out-source things. But there’s a cost to that and if you are just starting out then maybe you don’t yet have the resources. Or maybe you haven’t found the right company to outsource it to. Trusting someone else can be difficult.
Or maybe it’s something that you can’t outsource and you have to do it yourself. There was no-one I could out-source taking my medicine to! I just had to learn to do it.
And now I can do it and it doesn’t bother me at all.
So what tasks in your business do you dread?
Can you outsource them? If you can and the cost of doing it makes sense then outsource.
If you can’t outsource then put on your big girl (or boy) pants and just do it. Ask for help from people who can do it and learn.
You might find that the more you do it, the easy it will become and you may even learn to love it. I used to hate public speaking but I love it now. Why else would I have stood on the 4th plinth in Trafalgar Square
I’ll tell you another time how I got over my public speaking fear, but in the meanwhile share with us what you want to get better at and we’ll look to running a session on it. The BWN is all about supporting your business growth.
(For another dose of tough love, read Steve Clarke’s blog called Can you please stop complaining!)
There seems to be this new breed of people – the procrastinators (sounds like something out of Star Trek doesn’t it?) A lot of business women describe themselves as procrastinators and search for ideas and ways to deal with what they procrastinate about because of the impact it can have on their business success.
If you find yourself exploring the realms of “procrastinator” what can you do to ensure it doesn’t get in the way of what you wish to achieve?
Firstly even procrastinators do not procrastinate about everything. They successfully get up and get dressed and drive a car to arrive at meetings, shops etc. This proves that they do not procrastinate about everything, just certain areas of their life.
What areas of your life do you procrastinate about?
What areas of your life do you always get on and achieve what you wish to?
If you can become aware of this you can start to address the obstacles that are there.
Be aware of the way you think. When we procrastinate we constantly reinforce what our mind has already said to us. “That job is going to take ages and is going to be a real headache” our mind tells us, and we allow it to increase these feelings by reinforcing them. So be aware of this and stop them in their tracks.
Do you even want it? Another reason that we put things off is because in actual fact it’s something that we do not even want. There are many external influences on our lives, from friends and family to media and the internet, it can be hard to listen to our internal voice. How many times have you thought something would be great and you have been shot down by someone and then gone on to dismiss it all together? Before you ask other people what they think debate the pros and cons with yourself and find out what you really want.
Are you procrastinating or are you subconsciously listening to your gut instinct?
Remember the sticker charts you gave your kids, or were given yourself? Ever thought about why they are so successful and popular? They work!
Visual stimulation works a treat with procrastination. If you know the area that you procrastinate in create your own sticker chart. (You don’t need to show anyone. You can stick it to the inside of your wardrobe.) Make it fun, if it makes you laugh when you stick a smiley face sticker (or our personal favourite the all hallowed Gold Star) on your chart when you actually do it, you are more likely to do it again. You are creating a subconscious link to being happy with getting the job done, and every sticker reinforces that.
Lastly when you succeed over the procrastinator in you, however small the accomplishment acknowledge it. Revel in your successes. These will reinforce that you can beat procrastination and achieve what you wish to.
Let us know how you get on and if you wish to discuss more ways to help you beat the procrastinators get in touch.
If you run your owns business you’re bound to have had days where you think – Why AM I Doing This?
It can be lonely.
Hard work with little satisfaction.
Disappointing. The list is pretty long!
But don’t forget it can also be a rewarding and a fantastic one.
So how do you deal with those “aaaaaaahhhhh!” days?
Never forget why you went into business, your vision, your passion – it’s all still there, reignite it by remembering everything this career choice gives you.
List the negatives, what’s your top bug bear? Is it email mountains, admin in-trays or social media overload? Outsourcing the jobs that don’t directly pay can free up your time & more importantly your mind and energy to concentrate on the success of your business.
Having no boss has so many advantages but if you did what would they say should be your top priority? A boss also is there to acknowledge your achievements, so if you don’t give yourself a pat on the back, who else will?
Remember to ask yourself lots of questions ALWAYS. Asking good questions leads to good answers – get noisy and always question what is the best course of action, what do you need to be doing? What’s – When’s and How’s.
Who can you rely on to motivate and inspire you? Who will support you and pick you up again – social networking, a coffee with a friend, networking, business meetings, mentoring, coaching – what will you rely on?
Knowing what motivates and inspires you will spur you on – so the next time you have a tough day – You Will be Ready for it!
There are some true greats in our world today. And today we lost one.
We read this and had to share it with you. Steve Jobs was co-founder and former CEO of Apple, and today died far too young at the age of 56 after a long and highly public battle with cancer. He truly inspired a generation and touched so many lives in so many ways.
“Steve Jobs02:40 The Wall Street Journal has republished Jobs’ well-known 2005 commencement address at Standford University, in which he reflected on life, career and mortality:
“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.””
This man knew what he was talking about – Seize the Day ladies, Seize the Day.
To read the full article – http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/steve-jobs/8809997/Steve-Jobs-dies-live-blog.html
So the BWN website is getting an overhaul.
I personally got raked over the coals for being too good at marketing and driving too many business women to the site and it couldn’t cope. Now that is the kind of telling off I like!
But the outcome is my IT Fairy (no really we have an IT Fairy!) said that we were going over to an even more interactive site.
The Business Women on our site would be able to use it more and it would work even better for driving traffic to their websites.
It would be easier for business women to access the information they needed.
And we would be able to add a shop with great business offerings and books from our favourite speakers.
It all sounded great……BUT…..
I like many have a passion for just getting on with it. And when confronted with something new something goes in my head. It’s my Mrs Negativity. I don’t know if you have one (But I’m betting you do) mine looks a bit like Maureen Lipman off of the BT adverts. “An ology” remember. Wow I bet I’m showing my age there!
But the fact is when she pipes up the real me. The capable, effective business women me kind of shrinks a bit. As Mrs Negativity says things like “Mmmm do you remember that time at Dads house when you broke the TV, best you leave that well alone don’t you think for the clever folk.” Then she whines “Still you are not bad at cooking, stick to that dear and leave the grown up stuff to someone cleverer. There’s no shame in being a good housewife love. Everyone needs clean floors.” Okay so there is nothing wrong with being a full time homemaker. I loved that time in my life. But the way Mrs Negativity says it she makes me feel about 5 again.
So why do we let this happen?
I know the quickest way to shut her up is to prove her wrong. And here is the thing. The minute you take action things get easier. Okay so you might make a mistake but with most things in life, that can be fixed and you can learn in the process.
The problem is the longer you hold off, you allow your Mrs Negativity to attack your success and your momentum. The less powerful you are and the stronger you make your Mrs Negativity.
Learning new things is so often an area that we procrastinate on. We hold fire. We “Wait and See” But how beneficial is that for your success?
What impact is that going to have on your business and your life?
In business there will always be a latest gadget, tool, idea that you are going to need to get your head round and you have 2 choices. 1) rise to the challengae and learn something new to grow your business and your success or 2) allow it to be an obstacle to your success.
Now who wants to put obstacles in the way of their success?
Mmmm so here I sit with a brand new layout to blog with, a new style website to up date, to interact with business women and slightly nervous as to how posting this blog will go. But Mrs Negativity (Sorry Maureen Lipman but it will always be your face I see) is firmly shut up. Oh yes I’m sure as I press a wrong key she will be there to say “told you so” but I will be ready “With don’t worry love, I have plenty of experiences of getting it right so it’s only a matter of time!” And as I say that confidently like the successful business woman I am, in my mind I am sticking my tongue out at her (Well everyone that knows me knows I’m very young and fun at heart – yes just a big kid really!)
Every time this week something new comes along. Don’t say “mmmm That looks interesting – I will look into it” Give it go. Get stuck in. And I would love to know how you get on. At the BWN there are always new things to learn, if you don’t see something you like, let us know and we will get that subject added.