Category Archives: Financial & Insurance

To Listen

Listening

skills

Tammy Kohl

Recently we attended a conference in Reading PA at Resource Associates, during which Tammy Kohl made a presentation on Listening. I would like to share with you some of the ideas and thoughts. It was a great subject and helpful to us all.

First consider on a scale of 0 to 100% what your level of efficiency is. 60% of the time we spend in communications is listening. Studies have shown that the average person listening skills are only 25 % efficient.… Read the rest

Goal Setting

Business Goal Setting

The Key to Growth and Success

 goalAs we begin a new year, our hope is to continue to grow our businesses in both revenue and profitability. One of the most important responsibilities of leaders is to establish goals for their business. As a business grows, it becomes more difficult to align the efforts of  increased  employees. During the start-up phase of a business, communications tend to be informal and it is easier for the owner to ensure that expectations and plans are clear because there are fewer people. However, adding employees adds complexity, and it becomes critical to formalize goals to ensure that everyone is on the same page.… Read the rest

Learn to Say No

How Do You Define Success?

Recently I had a meeting with a colleague and he said something that really hit successhome.

This person is driven and early in his career he made sacrifices with his family to get ahead.  He achieved great financial success and rapidly rose up the career ladder.  However, the financial gain was offset by the costs to his personal life: divorce, disconnected with his children, and even his own health. He told me now that he is older, and wiser, he wouldn’t have given up so much personally to gain what he did financially.Read the rest

Leadership Growth

Growing the Leader Within Us

 leader“For what we’ve discovered, and rediscovered, is that leadership isn’t the private reserve of a few charismatic men and women. It’s a process ordinary people use when they’re bringing forth the best from themselves and others. Liberate the leader in everyone, and extraordinary things happen.”
– James M. Kouzes and Barry Z. Posner, The Leadership Challenge: How to Keep Getting Extraordinary Things Done in Organizations.Read the rest

Your Vision

Motivation and Your Personal Vision

vision

Trying to succeed at anything without first having a clear vision of what it is you want to accomplish will only lead to you going around in circles and eventually giving up in frustration.

To develop your vision, you must look inside yourself. Vision comes from within, from the spirit or subconscious, whatever you choose to call it. Everyone has a vision that is uniquely their own, and you are no different. The hard part comes in understanding your personal vision and how it applies to your personal motivation plan.… Read the rest

Managing Behaviors

Understanding and Managing Behavioral Differences

behavioral When the almighty created each of us he threw away the mold. No two us have the same personalities, think in the same way, or are motivated by the same things. This is one of the great wonders of the world, but it provides us as leaders with some difficult challenges. Why do people react differently to what we say? Who is best suited to handle a role in our group? How do I best motivate an individual? Let’s consider a better way to answer these questions.

Physiologists tell us that there are four general dimensions of behavioral styles; decisiveness, interactive, stabilizing and cautiousness. Part of what makes each person an individual is their unique combination of these four dimensions of behavior.… Read the rest

Hiring

Finding and Hiring the Right People

teamFor those who have spent a portion of their careers in a large organization, they had expert assistance when it came to hiring new employees. That assistance may have come from a Human Resources staff who helped to locate prospective employees and then assisted with the initial screening. For many of us, our careers transitioned to either smaller businesses or nonprofits, where that assistance does not exist. That being said, we need some basic principles to guide us through the hiring process.… Read the rest

Keeping Score Helps

The Strength of Data

dataIn his book, Traction-Getting a Grip on Your Business, Gino Wickman tells a story which needs to be consider by both businesses and nonprofits. Picture a small plane flying across the Atlantic Ocean. Halfway across the captain announces.” I’ve got bad news and I’ve got good news. The bad news is that the gauges aren’t working. We are hopelessly lost. I have no idea how fast we are flying or in what direction and I don’t know how much fuel we have left. The good news is that we’re making great time. Management meetings often center on solving the crisis of the day or celebrating the lasts success, but metrics, the airplane’s gauges, are not often reviewed.… Read the rest

Building a Small Business

Working with Small Business

businessOver the last 13 years we have had the opportunity to work with a number of small businesses, all owned by an individual, with some degree of family involvement. It has been truly a unique learning experience because the majority of my business background was either with larger corporations or in the academic community. In that environment, great importance was placed on growing revenue and profit. While most of these smaller businesses are motivated to grow and be more profitable, several are more interested in sustainability. Maintaining a family-centered life style can often be a chief motivator.

Our focus has not been on brand new businesses that might be classified as start-up. Our clients tend to be already well established businesses who may be in need of making changes required achieve higher levels of success.… Read the rest

Being a Better Boss

Traits of a Bad Boss

bossSurveys have indicated that most workers have had a bad boss. I have, haven’t you? They are slow to praise, but quick to point out errors. They spend most of their time in their office and leadership meeting. They are seldom seen wandering through the office and talking with the staff. A survey conducted by the Chicago based LaSalle network discovered that most people have had a bad boss.… Read the rest

Be Prepared

Perfect Planning Prevents Poor Performance

successWe recently conducted a workshop at the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives in Savannah GA. There were approximately 120 chamber leaders, from across the nation, and the question was asked, how many have a formal strategic planning process?  There was an overwhelmingly positive show of hands. The response from these participants reflects our experience with all nonprofits, that most have a strategic planning process. It may vary in timing or method, but it is essential to the success of the group. Without it, there can be a loss of faith from those who invest their time, trust and resources to an organization.… Read the rest

Continue to Learn

A Search for Knowledge

knowledgeWarren Buffet is quoted as saying, “Risk comes from not knowing what you are doing.” Mr. Buffet is considered one of the smartest investors in the modern era. One might say that he is a very knowledgeable investor. What makes him a knowledgeable investor? I would suggest that he works hard to become knowledgeable in the companies in which he invests. He learns to know their management, their product/services, their people, their plans, their competitors, their markets, their technologies and their people. He never assumes anything or works on a tip. He is in a constant search for knowledge.… Read the rest

Business Coaching

Business Coaching

coachingWe are often in a social situation where we meet people, who will eventually ask us, what we do. When we reply that part of our practice is business coaching they often reply, “OH that’s nice.”  They say that in a way which indicates that they are unsure of what that means and are fearful of finding out more about the subject. They assume that they are well equipped to handle their business issues or that this is a “touchy feely” subject that makes them uncomfortable.… Read the rest

Finding Leaders

Are Leaders Born or Made?

Some Management Coaching Ideas on Leadership

leaders

Leadership is a key element in the development or rebirth of any organization, whether it is a for-profit business or non-profit community organization. It is important to large corporations, such as General Electric; small local businesses, such as a town dry cleaner; city, county and state government; churches, and service organizations such as Rotary.… Read the rest

Fears

Facing Your Fears as an Entrepreneur

entrepreneurEvery entrepreneur I have ever talked to has had to come face to face with his/her fears. I have had to as well. I want to share with you some of the techniques I have used to face them.

The first step is not to be in denial. You have fears even if you don’t readily acknowledge them. They sometimes take the form of chatter in the back of your head that says you can’t do it.… Read the rest

Chart the Course

The Ability to Chart a Course

courseOne of the skills necessary for success in any business or nonprofit organization is the ability to chart a course. To properly chart a course, it is important to understand first where you are, than where you want to go, and finally the plan on how to get there. If you have ever been in a new town and wanted to go out to dinner, you might have first looked for a restaurant in a magazine. You then call to find out where they were located. The first question you were asked by the person in the restaurant is where are you now? In fact, you have just taken the first step in charting a course to dinner.… Read the rest

Growing Small Business

 

10 Ways to Grow Your Small Business

Are you looking to be more successful? Here are ten ways to grow your small business.

business

  • Know yourself. Do a SLOT analysis. What are your strengths, your limitations, opportunities, and threats? Examine and understand each. In every strength, there is a limitation and in every limitation there is a strength (e.g. you are small so lack financial clout; the advantage is by necessity you will be more creative). The better you know yourself the more successful you will be. By knowing yourself you not only know your areas of opportunity, you know what areas to avoid.
  • Read the rest

    Business Leadership

    Leadership and Influence

    leadershipAs a business person managing a small or medium size company, you may not be able to relate the subject of leadership to success in your business. If fact, when you see the subject as the topic of this article, you may choose to slip it and move on. So no matter whether you are a one person business or have a staff of dozens, leadership is critical to your continued success. When you think of a leader in a successful business, ask yourself:

    What specific personality characteristic does this person possess?

    How does this person relate to others, professionally and socially?

    Read the rest

    Overtime

    Overtime Overhaul: Review Proposed Changes Now Before Final Rule Announced

    Overtime rule expected to be costly

    By Allen Smith  5/10/2016

    overtimeAs HR professionals wait anxiously for the release of the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL’s) final changes to the overtime exemptions, it’s becoming clear that the new rule will cost many employers a lot of money. But the revised standard also will create an opportunity for HR to correct some past mistakes.

    Employers will spend $592.7 million to comply with the new rule, the DOL estimated, saying that each of the 7.4 million affected establishments will need one hour to get up to speed on the changes. The department calculated that it will cost $254.5 million for businesses to become familiar with the regulation; $160.1 million to make necessary adjustments; and $178.1 million in managerial costs… Read the rest

    Business Knowledge

    A Lack of Knowledge of the Business They Are In

    business In his book, The E-Myth Revisited Michael Gerber describes the roles played by different personalities within a business.  The first is the technician, who actually does the work or delivers the service in the business. The second is the manager, who organizes and controls the business on a daily basis. The third is the entrepreneur who best understand the business environment and leads it though changes necessary for continued success. One might conclude that knowledge of actual working in the business or managing the operation of the business does not always lead to success. What leads to success is knowledge of how a business needs to operate within its competitive market place.… Read the rest