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A Simple Method for Overcoming Excuses and Fear

As a Business Advisor and Coach, Robin and I are constantly listening to people tell us why they can’t do this or that, as well as excuses using either parents, past practices, routines and old patterns of behavior.

Recently, one of my mentors used a video to set the stage for us to stop making excuses as to why we could not implement his system into our life. Business and Life success is often predicted upon our ability to let go of the past and do allow for something new to take it’s place  in our routines.

This video from a MAD TV show does explain how to implement the necessary change in our current behaviors and move forward. Enjoy this fun and meaningful scene from Bob Newhart …

Barriers to Performance Improvement – Part Two

This is part two of a five part series about the Barriers to Performance Improvement.

These are all major and common in business and organizations today and will need to be addressed in order to completely turn around our competitive advantage in the global economy.

The Second Barrier to Performance Improvement is…

In Flanders Field

Flanders Fields was a World War 1 battlefield in the medieval County of Flanders, located just outside southern Belgium and northwest France.  On May 3, 1915 Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae penned the poem “In Flanders Fields” after he witnessed the death of his good friend, 22 year-old Lieutenant Alexis Helmer.  The poem was first published in December 1915 in the London-based magazine Punch.

In Flanders Fields

John McCrae, 1915


In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scare heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead.  Short days ago
We live, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, through poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

We need More Common Sense and Less Stupidity!

Okay, one more rant from me and I will get back to business topics. Yesterday I wrote about thinking more. Today, I’m writing about using Common Sense more and the true meaning of intent. So here’s my story:

Last night I was at my favorite restaurant with my wife and ordered a drink before my meal. To my surprise, I was carded! Now for some of you reading this being carded is no big deal. Well, it was for me since I am 60 years old and passed the 21 barrier many years ago – and it shows! Therefore, I asked what was the reasoning for type of action?

I was told several reasons: 1. Everyone is carded now. 2. We have to ask everyone to show “current” ID. 3. The ABC board is using stings to catch servers breaking the law. 4. A new law was passed making it the responsibility of the servers to check for “expired” IDs. 5. We are honoring older customers by asking for their ID. Okay, only four of the five are real – sort of like the real situation.

Here are my thoughts about this injustice and lack of common sense by some administrator or lawmaker. There is no common sense reason for this type of rule. To force one of the lowest paid workers to have to work in fear of being arrested or fined because they didn’t ask for ID from a person who is several decades past the minimum age to order a drink is just plain wrong AND STUPID!

The intent of the law – if using common sense – is to keep young people from drinking before they are of legal drinking age. That is okay as a law and should be a focal point of training in restaurants. However, to use these same people to “catch” people who have not maintained a “current” ID should not be a law or rule. And, to harass servers by using stings to catch one who did not ask an older person for ID is really stupid.

Customers should not be harassed while relaxing at their favorite restaurant because some bureaucrat decided this would be a method to “catch” people breaking some rule. What this really boils down to is let people enjoy their time out in the marketplace without harassment. Common sense could rule the day – if you look older than say 30 no carding. If anyone looks younger or if you are not certain – ask for ID.

This entire situation is due to someone deciding to be sneaky and have someone to “blame” when others do not follow base rules of civilization. To blame a server for someone not having a current ID is ridiculous. It’s bad enough that the terrorist have made simple tasks difficult – such as getting on an airplane, visiting an office building or a government office. But to make restaurant servers fearful to the point of asking 60 year old people for ID – well common sense has been eliminated as well as thinking.

Have a Happy Easter and Weekend.

Sales & Marketing – the Third Key to Growth

This seems like the obvious choice for the third key to growth, however, it can be a problem for many organizations. The key point is alignment between Sales and Marketing. Alignment seems to be missing in action in many of the organizations that we have seen.

A common theme is – there is the Sales Department and there is the Marketing Department – and they take this split to be meaningful. That’s the biggest mistake an organization can have within its walls! Sales and Marketing should be an integrated unit – both speaking from the same book.

Here are the pitfalls for non-alignment and reasons for alignment for sales and marketing.

Leadership – the First Step to Growth

Leadership is the first step on the pathway of steady, consistent and profitable growth. The leadership of an organization is the most critical step. In my opinion, it is the starting point to attain a growth orientation. There are several ways leadership impacts the growth opportunities of an organization. Yet, the operative descriptor is Entrepreneurial Leadership.

There are leaders and then there are entrepreneurial leaders! The difference is significant in both actions and results. The mistake some people make when thinking about entrepreneurial leaders is limiting them to only small companies. An example would be Jack Welch when he was leading GE. He was an entrepreneurial leader of a top 10 organization. Let me explain what I mean…

Know Your Software Technology to Improve Productivity

Knowing how to use your software technology improves your productivity – immediately! Sounds simple and it is. As complex and sophisticated as software is today, how many of you actually know how to use it effectively? When doing my research on what makes companies consistently grow and profit I discovered the true value of technology. Technology has a purpose to make things simpler for people – which feels counter-initiative based upon the lack of training and support for most software.

Remember this statement:

“Technology is designed to automatic and simplify the routine.”

Is your software doing the automatic and simplifying the routine for you today? If you are one of the lucky ones that has been trained on the software that you use everyday, then great – stop reading. If you are not one of the lucky ones, how can you move to those ranks?

There are many technology/software training companies located in the bigger cities. However, the best system for me provides flexibility to learn about my software anytime and anywhere. To select specific topics or techniques that I need immediately or a reminder for seldom used functions or actual software – you need flexible. While it is not usually to discuss business issues to name a specific resource is different for me.

You need to check out and test drive the learning. If you like it, you can sign up for what works for you. Personally, I have used this system for the past six months with outstanding results. I have learned how to use or should I say – properly or fully use my everyday software collection. I have also learned how to use some new software collections and have actually learned how to build a website, use certain code effectively, question my webmaster more acurately, and most importantly get things done much faster and simpler that in the past.

I’m not selling this and there is no hidden link or cookie from my site. Only an open testimonial to a system that I find working for me. Enjoy and learn some new things about that software on your computer!

It’s Time to Reflect back on Your Year.

Yes, it is New Year’s Eve. It’s time to reflect back on the past year and learn from your experiences. No blaming or negative stuff – just a reflection time for what you have accomplished, what needs to get more focus in the coming year, and what lessons has life presented to us?

Take time to reflect – before the football bowl games and the New Year’s Eve parties. Life is more important than the personal entertainment moments. Life is serious and requires some serious thought (disclaimer: without taking yourself too serious!).

At this time your journal or log or blog or FaceBook can assist you in looking back over the year. What have you accomplished? Did you complete the goals you set at the beginning of the year? What were the high points of the year? What was a low point of the year? What could you have done differently to achieve more of your goals?

One additional thought as you prepare for the new year. How will you make a difference? This can be about yourself, your family, your company, your community, your church or religion, your friends, your clients or customers, and the world in general? Cover the point that has the most impact in your life and MAKE A CHOICE!

Life is about the choices you take. Make purposeful action a commitment for the future. Know that your choices are what create your persona and your results.

Have a Happy New Year, be safe and successful. From the team at InnerActive Consulting Group.

Happy Holidays!!!

Just wanted to wish everyone a happy holidays!

This is a time to reflect upon the important things in life – family and relationships with others. Enjoy this time with others.

Those of you who read my blog on a regular basis – thank you.

I will be addressing more sales related issues during January as the need to grow revenues seems to be one of the most important issues with this recession upon us. We need to develop more confidence in the future and the current for that matter. Confidence will lead us back to growth – until confidence is the primary emotional capacity we may have to focus our energies.

Enjoy the holidays. Rest and Relax. Re-energize and refresh. Share with others and show your human side as much as possible.

It’s Time for Reason AND Fairness

Yes, it is time for reason and fairness in our world of business. No, I’m not a socialist as I have owned my own business since 1983 and profits are a good thing. However, as a business person, I am getting tired of all the unnecessary fees and add-ons that come my way. I really call this being tricky or just plain old greedy. Others call it creative revenue streams! Well, unless there is a value added reason – I still call it greed.

As our leaders begin to think of ways to stimulate the economy, I believe that one of the fastest ways to get us back on track is for revenues generated equal effort placed in getting this revenue. The more effort (and that includes thinking and creativity) the more one can rightfully charge.

This is just one man’s personal opinion about correcting the unnecessary greed that has taking place in the USA. I recently spent some time in Tokyo, Japan and learned a few things about the 2nd largest economy in the world.

First, there is no tipping in Japan. The price is the price. In the US, after you get your food bill – you are “expected” to add another 20% after tax! Interesting. No matter what the level of service was during your visit. The other thing that I was amazed to find – the Japanese retail environment was noteworthy. When you entered the store, you were greeted by smartly dressed men and women – who were smiling and excited you chose their store. Service was off the charts, as clerks were available to answer your questions, guide you to the right locations, as well as show you how things worked. Again, with real smiles! And, they were not pushy, they truly understood what service was all about – helping the customer.

We need to take inventory of current practices and determine if they are fair to the customer. All to often we can say this is true. Put the customer back at the top of the pyramid and the economy will again click into gear – big time. Take a moment and assess your companies pricing and customer practices. Are they fair and benefit the customer’s experience? Be honest to yourself and make a difference.