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Category Archives: Business

Pick a Business Coach

Recommendations

You may want to ask reliable sources for some recommendations. For instance, you can discuss this matter with your HR advisor, financial planner, banker, accountant or lawyer.

Working style

Just like a good personal trainer or therapist, a business coach also has his or her own style of coaching. How do they carry out their coaching sessions? Do they use the phone, email or some other medium? How much do they charge for each session? How will give you feedback? The coaching style of the coach should meet your needs.

Needs

Consider your needs as well. Actually, these professionals specializes in a host of areas, such as corporate profitability, turbulence tolerance and emotional intelligence, just to name a few.

Interview the candidates

It’s a good idea to interview many coaches in order to increase your chances of looking for the best match. Actually, the decision is important for you to choose the best lawyer and financial advisor. Just stay patient and cautious.

Interview questions

Make a list of common interview questions. The coach should give detailed answers to your questions during the interview. The questions should be related to the professional’s background in business, experience, credentials, coaching style and type of clients, just to name a few.

Get feedback

You may want to let the professional know your situation so you can get feedback from them. When interviewing good coaches, you may want to get early feedback related to your business issues. The coach should be able to let you know how to deal with the issues and solve them.

Get references

You may want to get a list of references from the coach and then contact each of the clients. If the clients are satisfied with their coach, know that the professional is worth a try.

Follow your gut

Good relationships are based on feedback, support, honesty, safety and trust. In the same way, your relationship with the coach should also be based on the things mentioned above. Once you have interviewed the professional, ask yourself how you felt about them during the interview. Was the professional honest with you? Do you think he is the right fit for you? Trust your gut and make your decision accordingly.

All about Business Poisons

YOUR ATTITUDE: Do you have the attitude of a business minded person? If no, then you need to work on yourself. You should always see the bright side of thing. My senior, Okon Joseph said that don’t follow your passion if you are not ready to suffer. Your attitude towards your business determines if you are going to be successful or not. Always be smart, cooperate and always out on the look for opportunities. They say too much of everything is bad. I agree with this saying but only in some cases. Your marketing should not have an end. You should have an aggressive marketing strategy that will leave your clients in awe. You should always think of a new marketing pattern in order to rejuvenate your business. Donald Trump said “success is not a result of luck; it is result of applied intellectual ideas put together all with the motive of success”. You should not feel that success is as a result of luck. Bill Gates said “if you were born poor, it’s not your fault; but if you die poor, then you are to be blamed”. So therefore, any asset you have that doesn’t pay should not be considered as an asset, but a liability.

STRONG BUSINESS PATTERN: This should be a result of constant deliberations on your newly birthed idea. At this stage, you should know what is good and bad for your business as an individual. You should also know the Pros. And Cons. Of content marketing. At this stage you should have a business pattern of Idea>Strategy>Test run>Implementation>Management. So now the question is “Are you ready? Will you go the extra mile? Are you willing to make superficial sacrifices like giving up on your friends (the ones that are crashing you)?”. The decision is up to you to make now.

Gain Focus On Your Business

1. Set out clear goals to help you align your focus. Think about what you would want to accomplish and layout a strategy on how to achieve them. Goals work as a road-map towards your larger aspirations. They should be realistic and timely. Goal setting will motivate you to put in the work you need to accomplish them.

2. Prioritize, have a clear picture of what needs your immediate attention, what you can put off for later what you can delegate or not do at all. This calls for planning ahead putting into consideration the deadlines and timings for particular tasks. This will help you to re-organize your mind and put you into focus.

3. Maintain a simple organized work space. Remove unnecessary junk and clutter form your working space. Have things in front of you that you need. You should get rid of photos, journals, magazines and receipts on your desk and shelves to create a less distracted work-space.

4. Turn off technology and focus on the task at hand. Flashing screens, new email notifications, vibrating cellphones is a constant source of distractions. Schedule the times outside of work when you will use your phone or tablet, and then put the technology away outside those times.

5. Focus on doing one thing at a time as opposed to multi-tasking. This way you will avoid taxing your brain by having it shift form one task to another which will lead to exhaustion and inefficiency. You are going to have to stop multitasking if you want to beat the competition and by increasing your focus you will get more done in less time. So avoid tackling two tasks simultaneously, it is better to get completely done with task A before switching to task B.

Maintain Integrity in Business

Presuming that you want to follow the path of integrity, what are the immediate steps you can take right now to ensure that everyone who comes in contact with you understands that what you say, you will do? As you know, your reputation takes a lifetime to build, and in today’s world, only minutes to ruin. One bad review or scandal, especially in the digital world where news can spread like wildfire, is all you need to see everything you’ve built in your life come tumbling down like a pile of toy blocks.

Sincerity always has a place at the table: I’ve often heard, especially in business, and maybe you have too, that honesty places you on the wrong end of a negotiation. Many professionals believe that sincerity is not recommended. I disagree. The people you work with will appreciate knowing your authenticity and honesty. I think you have everything to gain if you’re sincere. I’m not saying that in a tough negotiation you have to put all your cards on the table. That doesn’t make any business sense, but you have to be sincere in what you do reveal.

Surround yourself with others who have integrity: Have you ever recommended someone for a job or professional opportunity only to find out that they’ve blown the chance and made you look bad with your colleague or friend in the process? As a business leader, I hold myself to a high-level of integrity, and as I have said, when I say something, my word is golden. But, I also expect the same from those who work with me or with whom we partner. Make it a point to maintain high-quality people around you who also believe that integrity is a prominent value. And, the next time you have to give a recommendation, you don’t ever have to worry about getting an email or phone call that reflects on your judgment.

Learn the art of saying “no”: One of the reasons that many people often get themselves into all kinds of trouble is because they don’t want to hurt someone’s feelings or give someone “bad news.” They also think that they could jeopardize a relationship if they say no. This is a mistake. If an idea, partnership or opportunity does not fit with your agenda, then you have no choice but to decline. By taking the band-aid off early and saying no, you will prevent something that will only grow bigger and lead to awkwardness, disappointment or even anger later on because you didn’t deliver on what you said you would. Know when to walk away from something and always make it as early as possible.

Writing a Winning Proposal

1. Point out Requirements
Point out requirement abilities, contact them for clarification, do not put your proposal on hold waiting for a response, don’t wait. Get started right away so that you have plenty of time to edit your proposal and deliver it on-time to the correct office.

2. What do they want?
Determine what they want and write to that. Read the project requirements and be sure that your proposal is written to meet the requirements.

3. How will you be evaluated?
Know how you will be evaluated and write to that.

4. Support your evaluation
This step is crucial. You will need to support your evaluation and back it up. Write to support your evaluation by providing clearly written and outlined steps. Remember, the person who is reading your proposal should have no questions after they have finished reviewing your proposal.

5. Keep in order
Keep them in the order that the business is requesting them. Do not let your proposal get disorganized. No matter the size or length of your proposal, it is imperative that it be organized correctly and formatted to meet the needs of the projects’ requirements.

6. Create an outline
Create an outline with required information. Remember outlines in high school? This is where the skills you learned in your younger years will come in handy. An outline helps to keep the proposal formatted in a clear and precise way.

7. Review your proposal
Review, review, review.

8. First impressions matter
Proposal submission is your first impression.

9. Give yourself plenty of time
Provide sufficient time so you don’t forget details.

Have a Successful Business

1. Making a difference starts with your vision. Include making a difference in your vision and planning. Consider your impact purpose: what impact do you want to have? What does that mean for every aspect of your business?

What contribution could you make to a really big problem, like poverty or hunger? How can you engage your customers to give back too? Brands like shoe seller TOMS have a buy one, give one model. Good Food for Good has a buy one, feed one model with their cooking sauces and ketchups.

When you’re building this vision, just make sure it makes financial sense for your business.

2. Make good use of your money. What will you do with the money you make? You could donate to a cause you value or sponsor an event – easy-peasy. You could support your employees in donating their time, by giving them time off to do so, and money through donation matching. Doing this work together can be a great team building opportunity too.

And that’s just the beginning. Invest in ethical and environmentally sustainable business practices. Can your product or service change the way your customers see the world or interact with it? Pay at least a living wage to raise the living standard of people closest to your business.

3. Collaborate. You don’t have to do it alone. Collaborate with other businesses with similar impact aims and see what you can accomplish together. Business can be a powerful force for good.

Strategies Most Marketers

Fail to understand the audience

Your audience is your critic, if they want your product, they will be your customers. You will never be able to create a long-term and effective influencer marketing strategy if you don’t know your audience/customer. Marketers who have not yet flourished a genuine marketing personality are suggested to place their programs on hold until they understand who are their customers and what are their interests in order to achieve and interaction with the brand. It is to be noted that marketers need to understand purchasing habits, demographic information, pinpoints and psychographic information in order to create a marketing persona and conventionally, all of these statistics can be gathered through customers’ reviews.

Using Influencer Marketing in the wrong influencers/channel

Your marketing would not work unless you are working with the right influencer for your campaign. Influencer marketing is not identically effective across all channel, niche, and the target audience. If you are promoting a beauty product, much recommended working with YouTube Influencers since it is much effective in videos than a plain picture of your product and a post on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.

Expecting results in a short period of time

If you have just started doing the influencer marketing, you cannot just expect a good result in just one snap. In some cases, for a powerful influencer, marketing campaigns can produce results overnight. But mostly and especially for brands and companies that are not using E-commerce, Influencer Marketing should take time to effect. Trust and patience are advisable. It is to be noted that effective influencer campaigns help the improvement of brand awareness. When a candidate is aware of your brand, they will still need to undergo the process of your marketing funnel, the consideration and decision making stages before performing the purchase. So yes, it takes time to get the results.

Forgot to use the Analytics

Using analytics is one of the most accurate ways to get updated and determine whether your influencer marketing is effective or sat to say, ineffective. Monitoring and measuring the performance of your campaign is required in all types of platforms, from there, you will be able to know which part of your marketing campaign needs to be improved. You can find lots of platforms online that can help you measure your campaign insights and progress.

Uphold Efficient Business Growth

Innovation is a must. Your business must fully understand the needs of your target clients. It should work toward efficiently meeting such needs. Innovation refers to coming up with something that is new and great from something that is already great so you can be able to deliver the best value to end users. This further means that your business must always find time to study meticulously the journey of your target customers so you successfully innovate.

Always be inspired. Most successful individuals say that inspired efforts don’t deplete energy. Instead, they are very invigorating. Moreover, inspiration allows your organization to use your drawbacks to aim for victory. Hence, be always inspired as you are working to expand your venture due to the fact that a joyful process won’t fail to yield the best outcomes.

Timing is very crucial. When it comes to growth and expansion, you cannot be late or early. Bear in mind that plenty of great opportunities are just accessible for a limited amount of time. Also, pre-empting things will spoil their potential. Hence, you must take action at the most ideal time. This will involve the need to study provisions meticulously, to get help from consultants, and to know the different financing solutions that your business can efficiently use.

Expect sacrifices. There will always be sacrifices that must be made if you are aiming for better and bigger things. Indeed, sacrifices are inevitable. And this can mean longer work hours and avoiding some pleasures and physical comforts for a specific period of time or perhaps saving on a couple of things so that your resources can be allocated to more significant aspects of operations.

Business Partners

1. Trust

I put this first on the list for an important reason. Do you trust this person with your personal bank account?. If the answer is no, I would recommend that you think twice about getting into business with that person. As business partners, every dime you spend together affects your check book.

2. Friendship

If the person is your personal friend, make sure that their values, goals and responsibilities match yours. Do not assume that just because you are good friends, you share the same beliefs and values. I would recommend that you take a look into your friend’s personal life to see how stable it is. Personal problems are difficult to deal with and it can complicate someone’s professional life.

3. Money

Just like marriages, money is one of the biggest problems in a business relationship. To make sure that you and your business partner starts off on the right foot, I would recommend that you both agree on how much each of you will contribute to the funding of the company and how the profits will be distributed.

4. Responsibilities

All parties involved will have to agree up front on what their individual responsibilities are in the business. If a person keeps trying to do too much or ends up doing virtually nothing, the partnership will start to fall apart.

5. Varied strengths

Make sure that you and your partner share different strengths. If you have two people who are good at sales, who will contribute to the other aspects of the business?. You should bring someone who compliments your strengths in order to put some balance to the business.

Help Business Grow When on a Budget

  • Understand what your time is worth – and use it wisely. If you know an hour of your time can be billed for $100 and hour, and you just spent an hour on Facebook checking out what your friends have been up to – then that hour on Facebook just cost you $100. Was it worth it?
  • Have disciplined office hours – set an alarm, get up, get dressed and get to work. Have a start time and an end time, and do not do laundry, get groceries, vacuum etc. during work hours. If you wouldn’t do it at the office, don’t do it from your home office. Don’t multi-task – FOCUS!
  • Take an inventory of what you do really well and love to do, and what takes you too long and is outside of your skillset. If you spend too much time trying to figure it out, how much is it costing you versus the investment of having someone else do it for you. Virtual Assistants are great for that, have flexible hours, and because they don’t work just for you, they can work as much or as little as you need. In your first discussion with a VA, get the budget discussion out of the way, you may be surprised the suggestions and resources they can pull in to keep you on track.
  • It takes a team! Now, I don’t mean a team of support staff (although you’ll get to that point), but align yourself with individuals that compliment your business, that you can refer people to and they can return the favor!
  • Balance – succeeding doesn’t mean working 24/7, even if sometimes it feels that way! Balance work time with family time, office time with networking time. Let that balance change as your business does, and accept that it can change. What does balance have to do with budget? Absolutely nothing. But it is one of the most important skills a business owner needs to have, without balance you have burnout, burnout causes distraction, and lack of focus costs you.