Cultivating good habits is essential to an entrepreneur’s success. New habits are hard to master, but learning how we turn intention into reality can make the process much easier.
"The biggest problem is that we rely too much on willpower alone," says Heidi Grant Halvorson, psychologist and author of Succeed: How We Can Reach Our Goals. “Wanting something isn’t enough.”
Willpower is like a pool that drains during the day, then replenishes overnight. Each time you make a decision, manage stress, or do any task that is not immediately rewarding, you drain a bit of your willpower. With fewer resources at your disposal, you are more likely to give up quickly.
To successfully adopt new habits to grow your business, you need to bypass willpower. Here’s how:
1. Make a specific action plan.
2. Anticipate challenges.
3. Stick with it (there are no 30-day guarantees).
Reading and learning is crucial to building a successful company. While not everything you read may be ground breaking or directly related to your industry it is important to stay on top of trends and learn about what others are doing. There are a ton of blogs out there talking about small businesses, startups and entrepreneurship but a bunch really standout from the crowd. These bloggers are all also active on twitter which is a great way to engage them and see what else they are reading, thinking and talking about.
Below is a list of some of the top blogs and their twitter accounts to follow when it comes to entrepreneurship and small business. These sites are sure to make you think, teach you some things and overall help you build and grow your business.
Read more: http://tinyurl.com/6la3hl6
(Post by Dan)
Trust is a huge asset in every business situation.
While it’s possible to do business with people who don’t trust you, it takes a lot longer— and it usually involves complex negotiations and ridiculously detailed contracts. Ugh.
You’re vastly better off winning the trust of your customers—as well as colleagues, coworkers, and employees. Here’s how.
1. Be Trustworthy
2. Create a Reputation
3. Add Daily Consistency
Read more: http://tinyurl.com/cnhmn8o
(Post by Dan)
Are you taking advantage of your phone’s content creation potential? Here are five ways you can and should use your phone for coming up with fresh marketing content.
1. Taking notes: Creating quotable moments
2. Bookmarking stories: Read now and save for later
3. Recording audio: Share your thoughts in your own words
4. Shooting videos: Catching live action
5. Snapping photos: Capturing a moment, as it happens
Don’t just tell your story, show it
Read more: http://tinyurl.com/6v7c76s
(Post by Dan)
Why don’t more people “like” your business on Facebook or follow it on Twitter? Simple: Your perspective is all wrong.
You constantly extend your virtual handshake in every possible direction… yet no one embraces it. Very few people follow, connect, or “like” you.
Why? Simple: You’re looking in the wrong mirror.
Most social media marketing efforts fail because, at a fundamental level, people don’t use social media to connect with businesses—or even with each other. People use social media to showcase their own identities.
The key is to forget what you want to say about yourself. Think about what your customers want to say and feel about themselves.
1. Start with your customers.
2. Create a platform that integrates your customers’ brand with what you offer.
3. Be part of a movement.
Read more: http://tinyurl.com/6sqbldo
(Post by Dan)
For small businesses, time is very often money. Your staff will be multitasking a lot of the time; working on the move may well be an essential part of everyday life, while projects and important details can be changing all the time. No, you don’t have a secretary, accountant on call 24/7, or an IT department; but what you do have is a smartphone. And with apps taking over the planet quicker than we can count them, it’s hard to keep on top of the most useful ones. Here are a few of our favorites:
- GOOGLE DRIVE (and Drop Box, SkyDrive etc)
Read more: http://tinyurl.com/78vehf5
(Post by Dan)
Spend time up front to nail the right hires, and build a strong, cohesive team.
Hiring is hard, regardless of your industry or the surplus of candidates in the job market these days. In 7.5 years in business at Metal Mafia, I have hired a lot of great people for my team—but I have also hired many more who were not the right fit. Somewhere after the fifth or sixth bad choice, I decided I must be doing something wrong in the hiring process and tried to figure out how I could recruit and hire more accurately.
Here’s what I learned and how I modified our hiring process:
- Slow down.
- Think of the hiring process as a sieve.
- Create checkpoints along the way.
- Test candidates on skills.
- Get the team’s input.
Read more: http://tinyurl.com/73e4b3n
(Post by Dan)
When it comes to converting a warm lead to a done deal, email is a crucial tool. While there are plenty of technology tools for salespeople to use – mobile apps, Twitter, LinkedIn and so on – email remains the most effective way to maintain and build a personal dialog with prospects.
It’s an ideal channel for sending a very personal message, without length requirements, that can be forwarded, tracked, and measured for effectiveness. And it’s a great platform for building a long-term, ongoing relationship; something all salespeople know is critical for closing deals.
Here are some best practices to keep a conversation going using email – and how to get your message noticed to close that important sale:
1.) Be personal and relevant.
2.) Never “just check in.”
3.) Fridays and weekends are still prime time.
4.) As they say, timing is everything.
5.) You can go above, but don’t go around.
6.) Silence is death.
Read more: http://tinyurl.com/83e8uxv
(Source: Business Insider)
Whitney Johnson, president and cofounder of Rose Park Advisors, applies Harvard Business School professor Clayton Christensen’s concept of disruptive innovation to a creative career path.
Whether you are an in-the-know techie (hey, you’re reading this blog!) or you do marketing for a living, there are some things we should all be clear on.
1. Perception is everything.
2. Frame your way out of it.
3. Tell a compelling story.
4. Create more value than you capture.
5. Everyone has one goal — growth.
6. Content is king — for creativity.
7. Be gentle and constructive with your feedback.
8. If you don’t listen to me, I’m not lifting a finger.
9. Help others create meaning.
Read more: http://tinyurl.com/6r45g22
As an angel investor and a star on ABC’s reality show Shark Tank, tech billionaire Mark Cuban meets countless aspiring entrepreneurs who think they have the next great idea. So what separates the phenoms from the flops? Among several things, a passion for working hard and blowing their competition out of the water, he says.
Entrepreneur: What’s key to being successful as a technology entrepreneur?
Cuban: Busting your ass. It’s not about money or connections — it’s the willingness to outwork and outlearn everyone when it comes to your business. And if it fails, you learn from what happened and do a better job next time.
Read more: http://tinyurl.com/6uc7csf
For years, bakeries have created space for icers to show off their frosting prowess in front of customers in hopes of selling more cakes. But you don’t have to be in the food business to amp up the interactivity with prospective buyers.
"We live in such an age of disassociation, with most of our customer experience ending up being with a call center in Mumbai," says Stanton Kawer, CEO of Blue Chip Marketing Worldwide, a Chicago agency that specializes in retail branding. One way to build a relationship with your product, service or the people behind it is to show customers how things get done.
Read more: http://tinyurl.com/857hxsd
I don’t know about you, but I’m constantly running into so many cool websites I want to remember or recommend to people but I don’t always have time to make a note of them, add them to Evernote, bookmark them in Delicious, etc. So this is a good example of a post I created as a personal (and completely unscientific) resource that other people will probably benefit from as well. Some of these sites are pretty new while others have been around for a while now, but they are all awesome right now in 2012.
Read more: http://tinyurl.com/76vdb2x
Prezi, the Anti-PowerPoint, Gets a PowerPoint Import Feature
Web-based presentation service Prezi, which lets you create fluid shows that zoom in, zoom out and pan around information using either predetermined paths or ones you create on the fly, has as little in common with PowerPoint as it possibly can and still be in the same category. But it’s announcing a new feature today which is so logical that I was startled when I realized it didn’t already exist: the ability to import files from Microsoft‘s presentation package.
Read more: http://tinyurl.com/6scwohf