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Archive for June, 2010

Too Much Fat

June 28, 2010 Leave a comment

Last week I learned first hand about too much fat in my diet.

I went to the Mariners game Wednesday night and after I got back home, I developed a horrible stomach ache. Extreme pain, no way to ease it, and a terrible night sleep. The next morning, I went to the doctor and found out that I had a bomb go off due to an overabundance of fat in my diet the previous three days. I give you my evidence…

  • Sunday was Father’s Day. I had Gourmet Sloppy Joes with onion rings and cheesecake for dessert.
  • Monday was my anniversary so I feasted on a wonderful duck and linguine (dripping with oil). For dessert – Tiramisu
  • Tuesday – I had leftover duck, linguine, and cheesecake of course!
  • Wednesday before the game I went with my buddy to an Irish pub in Seattle and had their “Seattle’s best” fish and chips.

The consequential results were a traumatic night, an ensuing near no-fat diet, and potentially taking out my gall bladder.

Do you find fat in your daily work? I’m not talking about the fat you may eat in your diet. I’m talking about the fat in your day:

  • What time wasters do you have?
  • What do you do that is inefficient?
  • Where are you not productive?

All these “time-wasters” are like fat in your diet. If you overextend, they become insidious and cause you major “aches” in your wallet instead of your stomach. Like fat in a diet, a little bit of fluff in your day to reward yourself or catch your breath is fine…even healthy. But if you don’t control it, it will soon control you. The last thing you want is a “high fat” diet in your day that keeps you from being at your best.

Learn a lesson from my gall bladder. Watch your fat intake during your day – both in your work and your diet!

© 2010 Dan Weedin. All Rights Reserved

Categories: Business Strategy

Efficiency

June 25, 2010 Leave a comment

I went to the Mariners-Cubs game last night and watched Mariners pitcher Cliff Lee throw an absolute gem of a game. He only gave up one run on a home run and won the game easily. A couple of things I noted…

1 – He gave up 9 hits but found a way to consistently get out of jams by striking someone out or inducing them into a double play

2 – He throws strikes 75% of the time. 75%! The other pitcher was at 50%. When you are consistently throwing around the plate, hitters are swinging and you’re getting out of innings faster.

3 – He works very fast from the mound. Get the ball and throw.

Cliff Lee is in a word, efficient.

Are you efficient in your daily work? Are you maximizing your time, throwing “strikes” more than “balls,” and consistently getting out “jams” that take your time and mental effort? Take a cue from Mariners pitcher Cliff Lee. Work fast, get out of jams, and throw strikes. You will find your success, just like his, will increase and you will get more wins.

© 2010 Dan Weedin. All Rights Reserved

Lessons from the U.S. Open

June 21, 2010 Leave a comment

Since 1965, the United States Golf Association has been holding the U.S. Open on Father’s Day weekend. For as long as I can remember, I’ve been watching the entire Sunday round with my daughters, Mindy and Kelli. If you think they dread this, you are wrong. They actually love it and look forward to watching every year. In fact, we are planning on being at the U.S. Open at Chambers Bay in University Place, WA 945 minutes away from home) in 2015 regardless of where we all live. But, I digress…

The U.S. Open always holds great drama. The lessons we as business people can learn from watching professional golfers deal with pressure are plentiful. Here’s what I witnessed from yesterday’s final round:

  1. Graeme McDowell became the first European since Tony Jacklin in 1940 to win this event. He did it by being the only player amongst the leaders to stay focused on task, even in the face of adversity. He played his game, never forced the action, and made the right decisions at the right time. The prime example came as he stood on the 18th fairway as he watched his nearest competitor, Gregory Havret from France, miss his birdie putt that would have tied them. McDowell now knew that all he had to do was par the hole. Instead of going for the Par-5 in two (a daring risk-reward play), he made the “smart” play by laying up, hitting the green in regulation, and giving himself a pretty simple two-putt to win. Had he dared to go all out, his chances to error increase and he could have thrown away the title. He knew his position and made the right call at the right time. The lesson – Know where you are and make decisions based on common sense, not arrogance.
  2. The 54-hole leader, Dustin Johnson, gave up his 4-stroke lead within the first three holes. His round turned disastrous with a triple-bogey on #2; a double-bogey on #3; and a bogey on #4. He never recovered. This is a highly skilled and talented young man who basically cracked under immense pressure. The lesson – Talent is important, but it can’t make up for having nerves of steel and confidence to bounce back when adversity strikes. Had he recovered right after his triple-bogey, he would still have had an excellent chance to win based on where his competitors finished.
  3. Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, and Ernie Els choked. These three golfers own 21 major championships between them and you would have thought that any one of them would have taken advantage of the leaders backing up. Instead, they forced the action on a brutally difficult course and paid the price. Instead of playing their game, they tried too hard and it cost them dearly. The young Frenchman, Havret, is ranked 391st in the world and only made the field because he made a 50-foot putt in England the week before to get him in a playoff. The lessons – Experience doesn’t always trump youth. Sometimes, ignorance is bliss. Don’t rest on your seemingly better credentials as they might not be good enough. Next, don’t try too hard. Trying too hard leads to mistakes you normally wouldn’t make.
  4. Be gracious in adversity. There is a stark difference between Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson behind a microphone after a heart-breaking loss. Tiger is surly, curt, and uninviting. Phil is gracious, speaks at length, and offers a positive demeanor regardless of the outcome. Mickelson has that quality of great leadership. He hates to lose as much as Tiger, yet he won’t carry that through to the media or fans. The lesson – If you want to be viewed as an inspirational leader, then you have to exude confidence, pride, and graciousness when things get tough.

Congratulations to a deserving new champion, Graeme McDowell. I’m sure a few pints of Guiness were poured in Northern Ireland last night. Whether you are a golfer or not, I hope you can take a few lessons I observed from this great game yesterday. Golf is a microcosm of society and business. We need to learn from each other.

© 2010 Dan Weedin. All Rights Reserved

Becoming Fearless

June 16, 2010 2 comments

I’ve spoken several times recently on improving public speaking skills. Here are five quick hitters on ways to become “fearless:”

  • Think audience outcome. Stop worrying about how you are viewed; about saying the wrong thing; about being “found out” as not smart; or how your hair looks. Focus on what you want your audience to think, feel, or do when you are finished. What outcome should be achieved by your audience? When you focus on THEM, you worry less about YOU.
  • Your personal relaxing techniques. How do you normally calm your nerves? Whatever you like to do will work here, too. Might be music, meditation, or exercise. Everyone is different, so find “your happy place” and relax.
  • Talk with your audience before the event. 2001 World Champion of Public Speaking Darren LaCroix calls the “before rapport.” When you make friends of your soon to be audience, it helps your nerves. After all, you’re now just having a conversation with friends, right?
  • Memorize your open. If you can fall out of bed at 2 am and recite your open, then you have nothing to fear. You are at your most nervous at the beginning. Take that away by having your opening lines committed to memory.
  • Speak early and often. The more you speak, the better you get, and the better you get the less nervous you will be. Period. Never turn down an opportunity to speak no matter what your fears are. The more you do it, the more your confidence will grow and your nerves diminish.

© 2010 Dan Weedin. All Rights Reserved

Guest Article from Dan Janal on Bonding through Blogs and Newsletters

June 14, 2010 Leave a comment

A terrific article from Dan Janal, owner of PR Leads

How to bond with your clients with blogs and newsletters

Consultants and coaches spend countless hours thinking of new ideas to write for their newsletters and blogs. They all want to create a new idea and hop on a new trend. After all, we all want to be thought of as smart and helpful.

But did you know that the best way to bond with your readers is to show them that you are human?

It’s true.

I’ve been writing on the web for nearly 15 years and the times I get a flood of emails is when I reveal something personal about myself, not when I write a great article or explain a new tactic.

Relax, I’m not talking about baring your soul, opening your emotional closet or revealing your deepest fantasies. I’m talking about when you do no rmal things.

From my own experience and those of others, I’ve found the greatest feedback when writing about:
–       my cats
–       my vacations
–       my gardening
–       my attempts at playing the guitar
–       my training for a 5K race

I also get a lot of comments if a link doesn’t work or if there’s an extra space between words or if there’s a typo. I’m sure that’s because people want to help.

If you put more personality into your writing, people will want to know more about you and will bond with you.

I know one guy who writes about his skydiving. Another person gives the play by play details of his upcoming wedding planning. Another person prints jokes about dogs. Another person writes abou t his horrible experiences at restaurants.

Let’s face it. Most of the information we write about can be written by anyone. There are only so many ways to say “to lose weight, eat less and exercise more.” Or the equivalents for getting a job, overcoming procrastination, asking for a raise, leading your employees or making money on the Internet. The thing that’s going to help you stand out is your personality.

When you show personality, you bond with your readers and you’ll have a better chance to build trust so you can make a sale.

Dan Janal is a very successful entrepreneur, professional speaker and marketing coach who helps clients build their businesses by improving their strategy for using publicity, marketing, Internet marketing, e-commerce and sales. For more information, go to http://www.prleadsplus.com

This article has been re-printed with permission.

© 2010 Dan Weedin. All Rights Reserved

Hello? Is Customer Service Available?

June 11, 2010 Leave a comment

I hate automated answering services that so many businesses seem to want to employ. Is it so hard to have an actual person answer the phone anymore?

I had a client call me today to find out the last name of a person who I referred him to at an insurance agency. He only remembered her first name and couldn’t figure out how to find her on their system. They are fortunate he took the extra effort to find out…many would have just said, “Forget it!” I would have.

Do yourself a favor. Have a receptionist answer the phone. Give everyone a direct line or have them use their cell phones. Make finding and talking to you easy. That should be the first step in acquiring business, right?

Hello!!!!

© 2010 Dan Weedin. All Rights Reserved

Confidence

June 8, 2010 Leave a comment

Last Friday, I learned the root meaning for the word “confidence.” I was at a conference and the speaker, Chris Widener, broke down the two main Latin roots of the word to define the meaning…

“Con” means “with.” Like Chile con carne.

“Fide” means “faith.” Like fidelity.

Basically – to have confidence means to have faith in yourself. Small thing and somewhat obvious, but when the word was actually broken down for me, it made a greater impact. To be truly successful, you need to have a lot of confidence – true faith – in yourself. If you don’t have it, how can anyone else?

© 2010 Dan Weedin. All Rights Reserved