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Posts for for January, 2018

Three Steps to Succeed in Business

Posted on: January 12th, 2018 by R. Shawn McBride No Comments

We are all looking for the secret formula, how to make our businesses better, how to make sure we achieve our goals. As part of this process, we start seeing themes. Based on those themes, I’ve come up with three steps you must take to succeed in business. Things you must do to make sure that you are going to get where you want to be. These steps are embodied in The 3 Laws of Empowerment.

#1. Prepare. You must prepare yourself for success because success brings its own challenges. Moving from where you are now to being highly successful is going to require changes. Be prepared for those changes, both mentally and with certain skills. Start laying that foundation sooner rather than later, or else you are going to find that it will hold you back from success.

#2. Plan. If you are going to be successful, have a plan to get to success. You are going to need to execute that plan. You need to make sure that each of the steps is built and built correctly.

#3 Protect. It is great to get to success but make sure you keep what is fair and right and keep yourself moving forward in business.

You are not going to have the best success if you miss any of these three steps. If you are not prepared, your plans will crumble. If you have worked an excellent, successful plan after preparation, but you do not protect yourself, you may find yourself in the unfortunate position of not keeping what is fair and right for you. You need all three elements. Prepare, plan, and protect. When you bring all three steps together, it lays a foundation for great success.

What has been your experience with success? Have you seen others that have missed a step and not been successful? What are you doing to propel yourself to success? Join us in the comments below.

 

Make sure you download our free checklist to assess your business.  

This posting is intended to be a tool to familiarize readers with some of the issues discussed herein.  This is not meant to be a comprehensive discussion and additional details should be discussed with your attorneys, accountants, consultants, bankers and other business planners who can provide advice for your circumstances. Each case is unique.  Past results do not guarantee future outcomes. This article should not be treated as legal advice to any person or entity. Freeimages.com/photographer Ben Cameron.

About the Author

R. Shawn McBride is the Chief Innovation Officer at McBride For Business, LLC. His signature keynote, The 3 Laws of Empowerment, gives audiences an entertaining look at how they can prepare, plan and protect themselves. You can email R. Shawn McBride or (214) 418-0258.

Check us out on the web.
Get Shawn’s latest book.
Add us on Twitter: @McBrideForBus #McbrideForBusiness #3LawsofEmpowerment
Like us on Facebook.

Managing Your Time and Priorities

Posted on: January 12th, 2018 by R. Shawn McBride No Comments

I recently published a blog entry about managing your time and how important it is to get control of your time. In the comments we received, we found that not only do entrepreneurs struggle with time, but they struggle with priorities. Priorities may be the problem, but I view the issue as being one and the same. If you don’t know what you are working on and what is most important, you are going to have a hard time prioritizing. You are not going to know where to allocate your attention. Often, problems with time are a symptom of having too many priorities, trying to do too many things at once, and not knowing where to focus time and attention.

It is key that entrepreneurs prioritize and figure out what is most important. What is going to drive you forward? What is critical, time-wise? Once you know what is critical and what drives your business forward, then you can focus your time and energy there. If things that are a very low priority have not been finished at the end of the day, it is okay to go home. You can leave those on the back burner until they become a higher priority or they fall off your to-do list.

Sometimes, things are just not worth completing. We as business owners cannot do everything. We have to focus our attention and figure out where we are going to get the most impact for our time and money. It is okay to let some things fall off the list.

What has been your experience with prioritizing? Has it been something that you have worked on over the years? What are your strategies to prioritize the best projects? Join us in the comments below and let us know what your experience has been.

Make sure you download our free checklist to assess your business.  

This posting is intended to be a tool to familiarize readers with some of the issues discussed herein.  This is not meant to be a comprehensive discussion and additional details should be discussed with your attorneys, accountants, consultants, bankers and other business planners who can provide advice for your circumstances. Each case is unique.  Past results do not guarantee future outcomes. This article should not be treated as legal advice to any person or entity. Freeimages.com/photographer Kent Squires. 

 

About the Author

R. Shawn McBride is the Chief Innovation Officer at McBride For Business, LLC. His signature keynote, The 3 Laws of Empowerment, gives audiences an entertaining look at how they can prepare, plan and protect themselves. You can email R. Shawn McBride or (214) 418-0258.

Check us out on the web.
Get Shawn’s latest book.
Add us on Twitter: @McBrideForBus #McbrideForBusiness #3LawsofEmpowerment
Like us on Facebook.

Do Our Clients Understand the Value of our Services?

Posted on: January 11th, 2018 by R. Shawn McBride No Comments

I recently saw a Facebook meme that said, “Their problem is that they care too much about people who don’t care about them.”  Caring too much can be a real problem. And the same can be true in business. Often, we care about customers or business relationships who do not care about themselves. We as professionals or product providers want to help others, it is our goal. We know how good our product or service is. We know that it can transform lives. But if the person who is on the other side of the table does not appreciate it or does not understand it, we may have a dilemma.

A disconnect can occur if we care too much and do too much, more than they understand or appreciate. It can seem pushy and even be off-putting to them. How do we avoid this problem? The key, as in many things, is communication. When we talk to the other people, we need to understand their value system, what is important to them, and whether they understand what we do and the value that we add. If they do not understand the value, we can attempt to have a conversation and explain it. But at some point, if they simply do not understand or value what we provide, it may be best to stop wasting time. We can only service so many people and not everybody is our ideal customer.

Earlier in my career, I got caught in the trap of caring too much about people and businesses that did not care about themselves. But as I learned and as I evolved, I stopped wasting time. Working with clients who truly value me has made my business better and more enjoyable.

What has been your experience? Have you fallen into this trap? How do you avoid working with the wrong people? Join us in the comments below and let us know about your experience.

Make sure you download our free checklist to assess your business.  

This posting is intended to be a tool to familiarize readers with some of the issues discussed herein.  This is not meant to be a comprehensive discussion and additional details should be discussed with your attorneys, accountants, consultants, bankers and other business planners who can provide advice for your circumstances. Each case is unique.  Past results do not guarantee future outcomes. This article should not be treated as legal advice to any person or entity. Freeimages.com/photographer C. Glass

 

About the Author

R. Shawn McBride is the Chief Innovation Officer at McBride For Business, LLC. His signature keynote, The 3 Laws of Empowerment, gives audiences an entertaining look at how they can prepare, plan and protect themselves. You can email R. Shawn McBride or (214) 418-0258.

Check us out on the web.
Get Shawn’s latest book.
Add us on Twitter: @McBrideForBus #McbrideForBusiness #3LawsofEmpowerment
Like us on Facebook.

Five Steps to Get to Know People

Posted on: January 11th, 2018 by R. Shawn McBride No Comments

How do you truly get to know people? Well, give them a chance to show their true colors. We really do not know people until we interact with them and that takes time. In the business world, you will meet people who are great and some that are not.

At the beginning, many of your initial meetings will look the same. People will all talk a good talk. Usually, they can get through the first or second meeting while appearing to be highly professional. But something interesting starts to happen over time. People will start to reveal who they really are. How do you protect yourself? How do you make sure you are dealing with the right people and not with those who are trying to do things that they are incapable of doing?

#1. Start small. Meet people casually so that you can figure out who they are. Even things as small as meeting for a cup of coffee will tell you whether they can manage their schedule, communicate and arrive on time, and follow through. Do they follow through on commitments, perhaps to introduce you to people, or do they promise things they never deliver? These are early warning signs that these may not be the right person to partner with.

#2. Give them some leeway. Let them have some freedom to do things on their own. Ask them to help you out with something small. See if they actually follow through or if they drop the ball.

#3. Step up the pace, slowly. As you get to know them more, take more chances. This will help you understand them more and help you manage your risks.

#4. Evaluate. What are you seeing? Are they doing things well or are they struggling? Are they actually following through? Are they delivering? If you have somebody who is truly delivering, you are moving to the next level.

#5. Deepen the relationship. If you see somebody who has done well in these first four steps, it is a good time to have a deeper discussion. See how you can broaden the relationship and what more you can do together.

Start small, build up slowly. But the key is to give the person some leeway. You cannot control your risks all the time. You are going to have to take small risks and give some initiative to the other person. Let them do something that is low risk to you and see what they do. See if they follow through and deliver. Because you need to be careful when forming partnerships and alliances, if you let people show their true colors, you will learn who they really are.

What has been your experience? Have you had people disappoint you by acting in ways you did not expect? Have you found out things about people later that you did not initially know? Join us in the comments below and let us know what your thoughts are.

Make sure you download our free checklist to assess your business.  

This posting is intended to be a tool to familiarize readers with some of the issues discussed herein.  This is not meant to be a comprehensive discussion and additional details should be discussed with your attorneys, accountants, consultants, bankers and other business planners who can provide advice for your circumstances. Each case is unique.  Past results do not guarantee future outcomes. This article should not be treated as legal advice to any person or entity. Freeimages.com/photographer ratnesh bhatt.

 

About the Author

R. Shawn McBride is the Chief Innovation Officer at McBride For Business, LLC. His signature keynote, The 3 Laws of Empowerment, gives audiences an entertaining look at how they can prepare, plan and protect themselves. You can email R. Shawn McBride or (214) 418-0258.

Check us out on the web.
Get Shawn’s latest book.
Add us on Twitter: @McBrideForBus #McbrideForBusiness #3LawsofEmpowerment
Like us on Facebook.

Motivate Your Employees by Telling Stories

Posted on: January 10th, 2018 by R. Shawn McBride No Comments

Glenn Gutek of Atticus, the attorney consulting firm introduced us to an interesting idea.  Glenn told us, when managing law firms, that leaders talk about cultural norms and focus on stories. They tell stories about great service to clients.

They use those stories about how the company has performed, and how the company is to perform to reinforce a culture, an environment, for employees to help them relate to the company. This seems like a very simple concept, but the simplest is often the best.

Tell stories. Get your employees engaged. Use that to develop more rapport. Use stories to reinforce your expectations at your company.

What have you been doing with storytelling in your business? Have you taken histories of great service to your clients and used them as examples for your employees? What can you do better in the future? Join us in the comments below and let us know.

 

Make sure you download our free checklist to assess your business. 

This posting is intended to be a tool to familiarize readers with some of the issues discussed herein.  This is not meant to be a comprehensive discussion and additional details should be discussed with your attorneys, accountants, consultants, bankers and other business planners who can provide advice for your circumstances. Each case is unique.  Past results do not guarantee future outcomes. This article should not be treated as legal advice to any person or entity. Freeimages.com/photographer Gregory Porter. 

About the Author

R. Shawn McBride is the Chief Innovation Officer at McBride For Business, LLC. His signature keynote, The 3 Laws of Empowerment, gives audiences an entertaining look at how they can prepare, plan and protect themselves. You can email R. Shawn McBride or (214) 418-0258.

Check us out on the web.
Get Shawn’s latest book.
Add us on Twitter: @McBrideForBus #McbrideForBusiness #3LawsofEmpowerment
Like us on Facebook.

Avoid Stage Fright by Preparing and Rehearsing Before a Presentation

Posted on: January 10th, 2018 by R. Shawn McBride No Comments

A fellow public speaker recently asked me for inspiration and ideas to overcome sudden anxiety about giving a presentation. Here is the key. If you are going to give a presentation, you need to know your material well. Know the core material, the value that you are providing to the audience. Rehearse, if necessary, ahead of time. After that, the rest is easy.

You do not want to be on stage and waste the audience’s time. To deliver value to them, develop that value in the most effective way possible. It is a well-known secret among all public speakers that no performance is exactly the same. We all forget lines. We all make mistakes. We are still providing great value to the audience.

Many times, that value will be when you change that presentation for your audience. Even if you have rehearsed, you still need to be flexible and adapt. If you are getting feedback from the audience that you need to concentrate on a certain area, then concentrate on that area. Be prepared for questions. That, in fact, is one of the reasons that public speaking is different. It is not theater or just a recording. It is not standing there repeating the same presentation. It is interactive.

That is one of the most awesome things about public speaking. That is something that you, as a speaker, need to keep in mind. You can rehearse, but do not over-rehearse, because you want to keep that dynamic with your audience. Be interactive. Know your material and know it well. Know the value you are going to provide, but then be prepared to customize to your audience as you go. New ideas will occur. Do not get too stuck on one form and process, because you are going to need to change and adjust for your audience.

Have you had trouble in giving presentations in the past? Have you gotten stage fright? What did you do to overcome it? Join us in the comments below and let us know.

Make sure you download our free checklist to assess your business. 

This posting is intended to be a tool to familiarize readers with some of the issues discussed herein.  This is not meant to be a comprehensive discussion and additional details should be discussed with your attorneys, accountants, consultants, bankers and other business planners who can provide advice for your circumstances. Each case is unique.  Past results do not guarantee future outcomes. This article should not be treated as legal advice to any person or entity. Freeimages.com/photographer Wemedge.

About the Author

R. Shawn McBride is the Chief Innovation Officer at McBride For Business, LLC. His signature keynote, The 3 Laws of Empowerment, gives audiences an entertaining look at how they can prepare, plan and protect themselves. You can email R. Shawn McBride or (214) 418-0258.

Check us out on the web.
Get Shawn’s latest book.
Add us on Twitter: @McBrideForBus #McbrideForBusiness #3LawsofEmpowerment
Like us on Facebook.

Kodak Stock Soars – And lessons for the rest of us

Posted on: January 10th, 2018 by R. Shawn McBride No Comments

Yesterday Kodak’s stock soared.  Multiple news outlets reported the tremendous increase in its stock price.

Everyone seems to trace it back to Kodak’s announcement it will release a cryptocurrency for film, photographers and photo rights.

What’s most interesting is that I often reference Kodak as an example of what not to do in business. They held onto the traditional film model too long and their business suffered from it.

Now they’ve gone the other direction. Now they have positioned themselves as innovators – bringing new technology to the market.

A few lessons:

1) The market – and world – these days values the future more than the past.  They are buying Kodak stock on the bet on the future it seems.

2) Brand is important.  If Joe’s Camera Hut (no offense, Joe) had announced they were getting into cryptocurrency no one would have listened.

I am looking forward to seeing what Kodak does.

What business lessons did you take from this?

Building Relationships with Potential Clients

Posted on: January 9th, 2018 by R. Shawn McBride No Comments

Every business wants and needs to recruit new clients to keep the business going and growing.  This is our process for developing our clients, which might be helpful in your business.

  1. Client development systems. We have certain systems and processes for developing relationships with potential clients. We have networking events, marketing, both online and in person, advertising, and other avenues for getting our names in front of the right people.
  2. Relationship development. As we work through the client development process, certain people will open themselves up to relationships, whether they be potential clients or potential referral sources.
  3. We tell who we are. As the relationship develops, we communicate our value added to our clients. We tell them how we work with successful, private business owners in their mission to build businesses that stand the test of time.
  4. We have a point of entry. As clients or referral sources see us as a fit, they can contact us either by telephone or email.
  5. We have product offerings. Our products are matched to the potential needs of the clients.
  6. We have a welcoming customer service experience. Our service goes from the initial phone calls, where we make the potential client feel welcomed, through the entire process of being with us as our client.
  7. We have a legal point of view. We offer a core value based on our knowledge and legal experience, which is unique to the clients and their particular needs.
  8. We have a process for working with our clients. We follow set procedures and processes to work on their particular legal issues.
  9. We have a close-out process. As the relationship with the client winds down, we communicate with them and help them develop into being on their own and developing the materials that they will need to accomplish their goals.
  10. We have a process for clients to recommend us. After we close the file, we ask for testimonials to upload on our website, so that we can use them to further market the firm.
  11. We have a follow-up system. We keep in touch with past clients, ask for referrals from them, and continue to be open for future matters.

What is your process for getting and retaining clients? Have you had good or bad experiences with clients? What would you do differently in the future? Join us in the comments below.

Make sure you download our free checklist to assess your business. 

This posting is intended to be a tool to familiarize readers with some of the issues discussed herein.  This is not meant to be a comprehensive discussion and additional details should be discussed with your attorneys, accountants, consultants, bankers and other business planners who can provide advice for your circumstances. Each case is unique.  Past results do not guarantee future outcomes. This article should not be treated as legal advice to any person or entity. Freeimages.com/photographer John Evans. 

About the Author

R. Shawn McBride is the Chief Innovation Officer at McBride For Business, LLC. His signature keynote, The 3 Laws of Empowerment, gives audiences an entertaining look at how they can prepare, plan and protect themselves. You can email R. Shawn McBride or (214) 418-0258.

Check us out on the web.
Get Shawn’s latest book.
Add us on Twitter: @McBrideForBus #McbrideForBusiness #3LawsofEmpowerment
Like us on Facebook.

Refocus on Why You Are You Doing What You Do

Posted on: January 9th, 2018 by R. Shawn McBride No Comments

We can make a living in hundreds of different ways in this modern economy. Each of us has chosen different careers. If we are having success, we are probably following a path of specialization. We are probably focusing on certain things, certain tasks, that we are doing well. We have chosen those tasks from a menu of a hundred different things that we could have done to earn a living.

Why have we chosen these careers? Why are we focused on a specific part in these careers? You can make your living in a lot of different ways, but for some reason, as your career evolved, you chose to focus your energy in a certain area. You chose to do particular things.

Think back to that. Think about the why, and refocus on what you have been doing. Regain that energy and that sense of purpose. It will help propel you forward and make you a better leader, a better manager, and a more focused business owner.

Have you lost track of why you are doing what you are doing? Why did you start where you originally started? What will you do differently in the future? Join us in the comments below.

Make sure you download our free checklist to assess your business. 

This posting is intended to be a tool to familiarize readers with some of the issues discussed herein.  This is not meant to be a comprehensive discussion and additional details should be discussed with your attorneys, accountants, consultants, bankers and other business planners who can provide advice for your circumstances. Each case is unique.  Past results do not guarantee future outcomes. This article should not be treated as legal advice to any person or entity. Freeimages.com/photographer Erik Dungan.

About the Author

R. Shawn McBride is the Chief Innovation Officer at McBride For Business, LLC. His signature keynote, The 3 Laws of Empowerment, gives audiences an entertaining look at how they can prepare, plan and protect themselves. You can email R. Shawn McBride or (214) 418-0258.

Check us out on the web.
Get Shawn’s latest book.
Add us on Twitter: @McBrideForBus #McbrideForBusiness #3LawsofEmpowerment
Like us on Facebook.

Should They Stay or Should They Go? (Struggling with Employee Retention)

Posted on: January 8th, 2018 by R. Shawn McBride No Comments

Like a lot of business owners, you will occasionally have an employee you are not sure about.  You cannot decide whether to keep that employee or not. Maybe sometimes they perform well, but then they have moments of struggle. Maybe a star employee has some less-than-desirable behaviors. How do you make a determination of whether this employee should remain part of your team, or whether you should move on with somebody else? What is the best thing for your team?

There is one key test that can be used in many cases to make a decision. That test is this question: Is that employee self-accountable to allow for their growth? If the employee is willing to take responsibility for their actions and performance, whether good or bad, that can be a sign that the employee can be developed into the right team player to move the business forward.

However, if the employee refuses to take accountability or refuses to do the necessary things to develop more, then that employee may not be the right fit for your organization.

This simple test can tell us a lot in a short period of time. If an employee cannot pass this hurdle, the decision may become easier to let them go. This may simplify your management responsibility.

What has been your experience with marginal employees? Have you had difficulties in the past? What would you do differently with your employees? Join us in the comments below.

Make sure you download our free checklist to assess your business. 

This posting is intended to be a tool to familiarize readers with some of the issues discussed herein.  This is not meant to be a comprehensive discussion and additional details should be discussed with your attorneys, accountants, consultants, bankers and other business planners who can provide advice for your circumstances. Each case is unique.  Past results do not guarantee future outcomes. This article should not be treated as legal advice to any person or entity. Freeimages.com/photographer elemntz 11.

About the Author

R. Shawn McBride is the Chief Innovation Officer at McBride For Business, LLC. His signature keynote, The 3 Laws of Empowerment, gives audiences an entertaining look at how they can prepare, plan and protect themselves. You can email R. Shawn McBride or (214) 418-0258.

Check us out on the web.
Get Shawn’s latest book.
Add us on Twitter: @McBrideForBus #McbrideForBusiness #3LawsofEmpowerment
Like us on Facebook.