Because Small Business is Big Business

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Organizational Culture, 5 Steps to Shaping

These 5 steps will help you begin to define and shape your company’s organizational culture:

Uncover the story. Stories are powerful in identifying organizational culture. Begin by sharing stories about how you got started – what are some of the most energizing tales of the company as a start-up? What are the “legends” of the company? Who are the heroes of the organization? As stories are told, identify themes that tie to your company’s mission and values. Focus stories on what went well; when the company or an employee were at their best. READ MORE »


Personal Network

Personal NetworkI discussed the power of your personal network. We talked about why networking is so important: How it gives your company more exposure, introduces you to the right people, accelerates sales and helps you reach your goals. However, I did not discuss HOW to network effectively. So, as a follow-up to last week’s blog, I brainstormed six tips to ensure successful networking. READ MORE »


Learn Better In-Person?

Do you learn better in-person ? Attending presentations, meeting, swapping ideas and business cards, and joining discussion groups —these are just a few aspects of in-person training events that cannot be replaced by other forms of online education.

We tend to learn better in-person.Learn Better

Although the advantages of telecommunications cannot be ignored —it makes communication instantaneous, cheaper, and more convenient—it’s important to remember that before all the advancements in science and technology, people used to interact with each other more.

Why is this? Because of the fundamental reality that humans are social beings. The young and an increasing number of adults now find themselves active on social media, but their search for connections show that people crave human interaction. According to Ray Williams, a contributing writer for Psychology Today, human interaction is fundamental to one’s life and is one of the defining human characteristics that separate us from the rest of the species in the animal kingdom.

As the saying goes “Learn More you Earn More!” Check out our great authors and trainers or attend one of great workshops.


Know Competitors? Google Does

Know Competitors

There are many different ways of getting to know competitors, but the best way is – without comparison – via the omnipresent Google. The internet has revolutionized many aspects of having a business, and the way that you as an entrepreneur can gather information about competitors.

Formerly, it took greater effort to identify the other players in your field, or simply to get a sales brochure from a competitor. Today, this information is available to us the minute we look for it. With Google Alerts, for example, we do not even have to look for the information, but will receive an email when there is news about a product or a competitor. However, the internet is not the only place for us to get more knowledge about the market.

Other places include magazines and professional papers where the advertisements themselves hold a lot of information. You can often collect information from associations, and get the opportunity to meet and talk to your competitors. The same applies if your branch holds a congress or an annual conference. Finally, it is also possible to get information about the market from your own clients. To get an insight into the prices in the market, you might ask your clients what they usually pay for orders such as yours


The Process…

In our business and professional world, everyone seems focused on goals and results.  Although there is merit to people who are goal focused and produce positive results, we often overlook a valuable part of reaching those objectives.

What happens between the starting point to the finish line can be the most important part of an initiative.  This is what I refer to as the process.  We are always in such a hurry to finish a project, to know the outcome and to have the end results that we rush through the process and forget to take in what was learned and how we grew professionally.

We can correlate this to other more emotionally driven things that occur in life. We have all heard the saying…”it isn’t about the destination, but the journey that matters…” or something to that effect.  There is a great deal of truth in that, and we must remind ourselves to take it in.  We have to be aware of what is going on and happening as we move forward.

Sometimes, what we accomplish isn’t as important as how we accomplished it. Who did we get to meet in our journey?  What new skills did we learn?  Were we exposed to a new experience?  What did we become aware of about ourselves and our team?  These and other questions should be asked on order to truly evaluate the process and become more knowledgeable and better-rounded.

There are many ways to observe and appreciate the process and everyone needs to do this in their own way, but some tactics might include daily journaling, engaging in regular conversation with team members and stakeholders, listing the small steps taken, regular reflection or just taking the time to think about what has happened and how it has affected what you are about to do.

“The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity.  The fears are paper tigers.  You can do anything you decide to do.  You can act to change and control your life; and the procedure, the process is its own reward.” Amelia Earhart