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Your Past Is Not Your Future

Your Past Is Not Your Future – Better! Results Tip #2

10 Steps to a Better Career | Interested in a new career? Ready to leap for that next promotion? If so, it is important to take the time to evaluate your present situation, to explore career options and to choose a career that will be satisfying for you. CLICK THE IMAGE TO LEARN MORE

Terri Said, “I’ll never be able to get the top spot here. Pursuing goals like that just isn’t part of where I come from.”

Yikes! What a limiting statement to have about yourself and your abilities. And it certainly caused an abrupt change in our performance coaching conversation.

Of course Terri could get the top spot. There are no guarantees, but there are steps she can take every day to increase the probability of that happening. To position herself for success however she defines it.

But if her starting point is a deep-seated believe that she can’t or won’t ever be able to because of where she comes from, she’s pretty much dead in the water before taking the first step.

Building on Where We’re From

We all come from somewhere. We all have many pluses and minuses in our background. Family, friends, health, nationality and race, beliefs, finances, language, education, contacts and a thousand other factors. All are the foundation points from which we jump forward – that is, if we choose to jump.

Here are two of my favorite quotes on this topic. Both frame this issue with great clarity and precision.

First, from Brendon Burchard at his High Performance Academy seminar I attended in the spring of 2015:

Your background is your starting point. No more or less.

The second quote from Dr. Wayne W. Dyer has traveled with me for many years:

Your past is not your future – unless you want it to be.

Two great insights from two great thought leaders. Brendon is young and energetic. One of the great motivators and influencers of our age. Dr. Dyer – who had more influence on my thinking than any other human except my parents – passed on in late 2015. But not before leaving us with the wisdom of the ages.

If you’re giving me the honor of reading my articles or attending my Webinars or live events, I’m giving you a hard shove right now to invest a few precious moments of Internet research on both of these interesting men.

Your Call To Action

Let’s pledge together to draw a line in our lives that distinguishes the before, the now, and the yet to be.

Let’s acknowledge and celebrate our past as the foundation for future success.

Let’s take stock of where we are right now: our strengths, weaknesses, bright spots and blind spots.

Let’s leave behind once and for all the limiting beliefs and distracting habits that draw us in like quicksand and do nothing more than hold us back.

Then let’s choose to carry forward the positive habits, beliefs and other factors from our past that will serve us in the future as we pursue our goals.

One last quote as a tribute to Dr. Dyer:

“If you focus on what’s always been, it will always be.

Focus instead on what could be.”

Let’s explore ‘what could be’ together. Let me know how I can help.

John J. Hall, CPA

John J. Hall, CPA

John J. Hall, CPA, is an author, speaker and results expert who presents around the world at conventions, corporate meetings and association events. Throughout his 38-year career as a business consultant, corporate executive and professional speaker, John has helped organizations and individuals achieve measurable results. He inspires audience members in corporations, not-for-profit organizations and professional associations to step up, take action and “do what you can.”

 

 

dress for success

Dressing for Success at Your Next Interview

Many business organizations have pushed aside formal dress codes, allowing for more relaxed work environments. But when preparing for an important interview, it’s always safest to assume that you should dress in a traditional, professional manner.

Here are some of my simplest tips for dressing to impress:

1) When in doubt, go conservative.

If you ever are on the edge as to whether or not clothing, jewelry or hairstyle selections are appropriate for an interview, it’s just plain safer to lean toward the more conservative choice. It’s better to be more formal than dress for successinformal – safer to be old-fashioned than outlandish. This might seem boring, but it’s your best bet. Show the potential employer the respect they deserve by dressing up. And if you find that they allow a more relaxed dress code, you can always adjust after you’ve landed the job.

2) Stick to solid colors.

In most cases, clothing colors shouldn’t be overly bright or flashy. Again, err on the side of conservatism. Certain colors and patterns may stick out too much or clash with the interviewer or organization’s ‘style’.

3) Be mindful of your hygiene.

Make sure your hair is tidy, your nails are trimmed, you’re freshly showered, and your shoes are shined. The last thing you want is to go into an important interview looking like you just rolled out of bed or came straight from the gym. First impressions are fairly or unfairly based very heavily on your appearance, so it’s important that you prepare yourself in this way. Don’t give them any reason to doubt your abilities or attention to detail.

4) Go light on the scents.

If you normally wear perfume, cologne or aftershave, make sure that you don’t go overboard. If you use too much, it could overwhelm the employer and make for an uncomfortable interview. You want their focus to be entirely on the interaction with you. This is not a time for distraction. Everyone reacts differently to perfume and cologne. Assume that your favorite scent may have a negative effect on others. When in doubt, leave it on the shelf or in your purse.

5) Make sure your clothes fit and are ready to go.

I can understand and appreciate that you might not wear your formal interview clothes very often, but at least try them on ion advance of the big day and make sure they fit properly. Especially if you have had recent weight change – which the stress of a job search can often cause. Knowing that you look your best is important both for your confidence and your comfort throughout the interview. Make sure you look as great as you are.

Follow these five common sense tips, and you look your best at your next interview.

It can’t hurt and may very well help.

John J. Hall, CPA

John J. Hall, CPA

 

 

 

 

 

 

John J. Hall, CPA, is an author, speaker and results expert who presents around the world at conventions, corporate meetings and association events.

Throughout his 35-year career as a business consultant, corporate executive and professional speaker, John has helped organizations and individuals achieve measurable results. He inspires audience members in corporations, not-for-profit organizations and professional associations to step up, take action and “do what you can.”

reinvent yourself

Reinvent Yourself to Find Success

At some point, we all feel like we could use a do-over. There may be others who tell you, “There’s no such thing as a ‘do-over’ in the business world.” I wholeheartedly disagree. There are many ways you can reinvent yourself or your organization to increase your chance of meeting or exceeding your goals.

When you need to reinvent yourself, consider these four action strategies:

1. Start by “Cleaning Up”

Is there a mess in your workplace that needs cleaning up? Maybe it’s an annoying or outdated policy that everyone hates or simply ignores. Maybe it’s baggage from poor employees or managers that’s weighing you down. reinvent yourselfMaybe it’s an actual physical mess. Whatever the case, it’s not too late to stop in your tracks and start a do-over. Modify or get rid of policies that hamstring your business. Counsel or replace employees that are preventing progress. Clean up the mess on your desk. Of course you have to want to change before change can actually happen. But intentions are not actions. As the Great Yoda of Star Wars said: “Do…or do not. There is no try.”

2. Revamp and Re-brand Your Marketing

Do you have a marketing strategy or campaign that has just never worked? Or maybe worked once upon a time but has long since stopped producing meaningful results? One lesson I learned my first year in business: measures matter. Take a few hours to objectively evaluate your own measures and metrics to determine if your marketing and branding campaigns are working. If they’re not, it’s time scrap, reinvent or revamp yesterday’s ideas that no longer work.

3. Individual Reinvention

Sometimes it’s not the organization that needs reinvention, but an individual – maybe even you! People often lose focus, find themselves drained of motivation, or simply get overwhelmed or tired. As leaders, our job is to lead – including pulling, pushing, cajoling, incenting or otherwise causing your people to bring their best every day. Start with your own partial or all-out reinvention; show others by your example just how important it is for them to remain on track and deliver every day. Work with (not against) them as they seek to ‘reinvent’ themselves as needed to fully meet expectations – both yours and their own.

4. Forgive a Grudge

Grudges in the business world come in all shapes and sizes. They could be grudges between individuals, between competing organizations, or even between you and your customers or partners. Grudges drain energy, sap attention and divert attention from what’s important. Often it’s best for business to let bygones by bygones and start fresh. Without these grudges in the way of your progress, it could feel like you’re working with a brand new company

What do you think? Do these action suggestions apply to you or your organization? Let me know.

John J. Hall, CPA

John J. Hall, CPA

 

 

 

 

 

 

John J. Hall, CPA, is an author, speaker and results expert who presents around the world at conventions, corporate meetings and association events.

Throughout his 35-year career as a business consultant, corporate executive and professional speaker, John has helped organizations and individuals achieve measurable results. He inspires audience members in corporations, not-for-profit organizations and professional associations to step up, take action and “do what you can.”

employee to entrepreneur

What You Need to Know When Going from Employee to Entrepreneur

There are thousands of people out there working nine to five jobs with dreams of breaking free from the system and starting their own business. I’ve done it, and I always try to encourage others with these same ambitions to ‘find their own way’ to go for it. But never say goodbye to life as an employee without knowing exactly what you’re getting into as an entrepreneur.

Here are a few things you will need to know about taking that leap:

  • You’re going to be in for some long hours. There’s no way of getting around it; when you first start out as an entrepreneur, you’re going to be working a lot more than you did when you had your nine to five office employee to entrepreneur job. It takes a long time to get a business up and running to the point where you can take a step back and breathe. 25 years in I’m still cranking out 60-plus hour weeks every week. But if this is a business idea that you’re truly passionate about, it won’t matter so much to you. Just make triple sure that your loved ones are ready for the change, too.
  • You’ll be wearing many hats. You won’t be able to afford to hire people for every aspect of your new venture right off the bat. You’ll be in charge of many things yourself, ranging from overall leadership to tech support to marketing to service delivery and much more. Be sure that you are comfortable handling a wide range of responsibilities. If you don’t do it, it probably won’t get done.
  • You may feel isolated. This is especially true if you’re leaving a big company where you had lots of friends in the office. When you get started as an entrepreneur, it’s likely going to be just you for a period of time. This could be a shock to your system if you’ve never worked outside of a traditional office environment. From day one, find ways to include meaningful human interaction in your work. Coaches and mentors are a great place to start.
  • You will need to be able to set your own schedule. As an employee, your days are pretty much scheduled out for you before you even step into the office. It takes much more self-control to be able to work as an entrepreneur, because you have to plan out your own daily schedule. This means you’ll also need to learn how to prioritize tasks and manage your time appropriately.
  • You won’t find success right away. This last point might seem rather obvious, but it’s worth reminding you that you’re probably not going to have a high level of comfort with your new venture right off the bat. You’re going to have to take some risks, and it will likely take time before you reach a reasonable level of success. But if you have reasonable goals in mind, take effective daily action, and stay on track, you can get there. And it’s a great feeling when you do!

I’m not trying to turn anyone off from jumping into a new life as an entrepreneur. But after the safety and relative security of a full time position in an established organization, it’s important that you are aware of what to expect before you take the lead.

Think it through, ask for help, recruit your advisors, write out your plan, and then execute every day. You’re worth it!

John J. Hall, CPA

John J. Hall, CPA

 

 

 

 

 

 

John J. Hall, CPA, is an author, speaker and results expert who presents around the world at conventions, corporate meetings and association events.

Throughout his 35-year career as a business consultant, corporate executive and professional speaker, John has helped organizations and individuals achieve measurable results. He inspires audience members in corporations, not-for-profit organizations and professional associations to step up, take action and “do what you can.”

smart goal setting

How to Enjoy Work More as a Business Owner

Entrepreneurs who start their own businesses are often motivated to do so out of a particular passion. However, as you get beyond the formative stages and deal with the daily challenges of building your business, it’s easy to lose sight of that passion and, in turn, your motivation to be as great as you can be.

So how can you preserve that passion and enjoy your work more as the owner of a small business?

Here are some tips:

  • Don’t judge your success by what competitors are doing. I’ve seen it again and again: small business owners who seem to have an unhealthy obsession with matching the success of larger and more established smart goal settingcompetitors. But guess what; if you only measure your success by what these companies are doing, you’ll never be truly fulfilled with your own work. When you’re just getting started, you need to stay focused on your own growth, your own successes, and how you can improve based on what you alone are doing. Don’t compare your results to those achieved by others. Simply outperform them.
  •  Keep a narrow focus in the early going. When you’re just getting started with your business, you’ll have a gigantic list of goals and other tasks that you want to accomplish. However, trying to tackle all of these tasks at once is guaranteed to burn you out. Instead, focus on what needs to be done today, and only move when these tasks are finished. Not only will this help you to stay motivated, but you’ll be more productive over time when you’re not working on dozens of distracting tasks at once. Make your daily goal.
  • Keep moving. Don’t over-think your tasks or your goals; over-thinking often leads to inaction. Instead, leap into action and keep moving. You’ll be much more likely to produce results, which in turn will keep you motivated to keep working and growing. Take a moment to celebrate the small wins every day. But keep moving forward.
  • Keep your lines of communication open. You’d be amazed at what communicating with your customers can do for your motivation levels. It can be incredibly rejuvenating to hear even one or two small compliments about what you’re doing with your business. It’s also important to stay in constant communication with employees and colleagues. The more involved they are, the more they will go the extra step to support your goals.
  • Take breaks and reward yourself. Sometimes, it’s good to get away and give yourself the gift of time to recharge. Nothing wrong with that. In fact it’s pretty much critical to block out formal recharge time. If you’ve been working hard and have seen some success, reward yourself with a break in the action and come back ready to get even better.

Don’t fall victim to interim plateaus in your success; recognize them, smile, and then push forward to the next goal target.

John J. Hall, CPA

John J. Hall, CPA

 

 

 

 

 

 

John J. Hall, CPA, is an author, speaker and results expert who presents around the world at conventions, corporate meetings and association events.

Throughout his 35-year career as a business consultant, corporate executive and professional speaker, John has helped organizations and individuals achieve measurable results. He inspires audience members in corporations, not-for-profit organizations and professional associations to step up, take action and “do what you can.”

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