Dealing with Distraction

Dan Weedin Unleashed-40I’m spending my Sunday morning glued to the television watching the final round of The Open being played at Carnoustie Golf Club in Scotland. One of golf’s four major championships, The Open was being played for the 147th time, by far the most of any other golf tournament.

A young American golfer name Xander Schauffele is about to hit one of the biggest shots in his young career on the 17th hole. He trails the leader by one shot and this upcoming play is critical for him. He’s hitting from where the spectators were standing and in the background you can hear a child crying, likely protesting the fact she’s been out on the golf course for five hours. One of the announcers makes a comment about it, yet Schauffele seems unaware of it. That is, until he’s about to swing and the child makes an even louder cry that cuts through the silence like a hot knife through butter. Schauffele steps away from his ball, glances in the direction of the mother and child and smiles. In fact, you can see him almost chuckle. He proceeds to start his routine all over again, hits a nice shot and continues to play the hole. This 24-year old dealt with this situation far more graciously than most players many years his senior (and likely even me if I was in that position!).

Schauffele could have let this distraction affect him negatively; could have used it as an excuse for a poor shot. He could have lost his temper and the moment at hand. He could have attached blame. Rather, he smiled, chuckled, re-started his process, and played on. It’s a great lesson for business and life.

We all get distracted and diverted by things we can’t control. It’s very easy to attach blame and conceive excuses to others for our failures – the government, our employees, our clients; the weather, the bank, our family, the alarm clock, or that crying child. You don’t have to spend too much time on Facebook or other social media to find individual op-eds on the woe created by someone else. The reality is, we are all responsible for our own thoughts, actions, and behaviors, and no other distraction should have that kind of control over us.

The next time you find yourself angry or bitter over a bit of bad fortune, remember you have control over the next thing you think about and do. If a 24-year old professional golfer can quickly forgive a loud child and her mother for interrupting his concentration on the biggest stage of his career, we should be able to quickly regroup, recover, and play through our own distractions.

Quote of the Week:

”Real knowledge is to know the extent of one’s ignorance.”

~ Confucius

© 2018 Toro Consulting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

The key to personal and professional improvement is accountability. My mentoring and coaching program has availability. Contact me at dan@danweedin.com or (360) 271-1592 to apply.

Extra Points: Respect & Rewards

Dan Weedin Unleashed-40This past week has simply been astounding and confounding from a historical perspective. The events in Charlottesville, VA and the events and fallout are being etched in history books for future generations to read. No matter your political persuasion, it’s clear that there is great unrest, fear, and uncertainty with many demographics of people in our country.

The business climate never strays far from what happens in society. You don’t have to have a keen memory to recall a few months ago when the Uber CEO lost his job after creating an abhorrent culture and woeful morale with employees. Even small and medium sized business can become victim to misunderstandings, lack of empathy, and lack of caring. This all leads to poor morale and the consequences are significant: poor performance, high turnover, floundering sales, and loss of reputation.

If you own a business (or have a leadership position), then you’re responsible for making that place of business a welcoming environment with a culture of advancing employee skills, professional growth, and fun. Yes, that’s right fun. When people enjoy being somewhere and have fun, the results are off the charts.

If you are an employee, don’t think you’re off the hook. One of the most insidious maladies is a victim mentality. This is manifest when one thinks problems are someone else’s fault or responsibility; they take no ownership and instead pass the blame; and they bring in outside personal problems and make it everyone else’s problem.

Nobody needs any more victims. We all have greater control than we think. Respect and encourage people in your employ. Care about them as people, not just as human assets. Employees respect the sacrifice and courage it takes to start and run a business. Be a positive influence, rather than a divisive one. Ultimately, we all must simply care about each other as humans and respect that we share this earth together. That will lead to better politics, a better society, and better business for everyone.

Quote of the Week:

”Walk while ye have the light, lest darkness fall upon you.”

~ John Ruskin, English writer

(with the eclipse happening today, I just couldn’t help myself with this quote…)

© 2017 Toro Consulting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Do you need help growing and protecting your business? Call me and let’s schedule a meeting to talk. I’m confident I can help you and your business unleash your potential and profits.

Extra Points: Up a Tree

Dan Weedin Unleashed-40One of Barb and my favorite television shows to watch is called Treehouse Guys. This reality-style program chronicles a company of guys that build what I would term “luxury treehouses.” These homes (mostly used as vacation homes and cabins) are spectacular. It takes the simple huts kids build to new heights…literally. The skill and craftsmanship to safely build a safe and luxurious house up in the trees is amazing.

These guys are contractors with a patently unique concept that highlights their skill, talent, and creativity. They have a very targeted clientele as not everyone wants or can afford a luxury treehouse. They’ve parlayed that uniqueness into a “destination” company and a cable television show.

How is your business patently unique? To whom are you a destination business?

It doesn’t matter your business or industry. If you’ve not carved out your own niche and created a uniqueness about you, then you’re destined to be just another vendor or company among the masses. How do you find your uniqueness? It comes from what makes you unique and different. The Treehouse Guys turned a passion for treehouses and blended it with highly developed skills, and ultimately an ability to entertain into a television show (and undoubtedly more business).

Your task for the week is to uncover your individual and organizational uniqueness. While you may not build treehouses, you are skilled and talented in other areas. What you bring to the table is a value that must be marketed to your specific clientele. The more and better you do this, the more opportunity you find and the more resilient you become. Take some time this week to identify and define what your treehouse is, and then go tell the world in a way that they will take notice.

Quote of the Week:

”Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.”

~ Peter Drucker

© 2017 Toro Consulting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Do you need help growing and protecting your business? Call me and let’s schedule a meeting to talk. I’m confident I can help you and your business unleash your potential and profits.

Shrimp Tank Podcast: Aaron Schmookler

Great show last week with Aaron Schmookler from The Yes Works. Watch the video and then listen to the entire podcast on our website. You’ll learn a lot about leadership and management from Aaron and his partner in crime, Zander!

Podcast: Click Here

shrimptanklogo

 

© 2017 Toro Consulting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

 

Extra Points” Your DNA

Dan Weedin Unleashed-40It’s a girl!!!!

We had the big reveal party yesterday at my daughter and son-in-laws house. We found out that Pops (me) and Barb (grandmother names in flux and to be determined later) are going to have a granddaughter in September. It seems my life has been filled with “It’s a girl!” as I have two daughters of my own. As you might imagine, we are thrilled and excited.

On the ride home, Barb and I talked about the miracle of legacy. That little girl’s DNA has both of us in her. We carry on our own legacy through our children and grandchildren throughout generations. No matter what may happen to us, we have left a piece of ourselves in our grandchildren as a biological legacy and bond.

Got me to thinking (which could be a dangerous thing). There is a DNA component to a business. Each organization has DNA from it’s founder, it’s leadership team, it’s employees, and even it’s customers. This complex DNA strand is evident in the culture and values of the company both today and in the future. There is a legacy that lives on with each business.

Just like parents and grandparents, there is an awesome responsibility which comes with that title. For a business, the livelihood of employees and their families are at stake. For customers and clients, the incredible value they receive that improves their loves and organizations are on the line. And for the founders and owners, lifestyle, legacy, and significance are at the forefront. Bottom line, what you build today by being part of a company – regardless of where you fall in this DNA strand – will have an effect for generations to come.

What do you want your legacy to look like?

Need help forming your business DNA strand? Contact me at (360) 271-1592 or dan@danweedin.com and let’s talk about it!

Quote of the Week:

” A life is not important, except in the impact it has on other lives.”

~ Jackie Robinson

© 2017 Toro Consulting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Extra Points: Are You Out of Water?

Dan Weedin Unleashed-40This Week’s Focus Point: Are You Out of Water?

One of my jobs as the minion of two demanding Jack Russell Terriers is to keep their water dish full. While they might think it’s my “only job,” I do on occasion lose track of the depth of the water dish. Captain Jack is not afraid to tell me. He is very skilled at striking the empty bowl as hard as he can with his paw, causing a loud clang that reverberates through the house. If within a few seconds I don’t appear, the action is repeated until I respond. Captain Jack is not shy about asking for (or rather demanding) help and getting what he needs.

Business owners and other professionals should take a cue from my canine pal.

Be bold and ask for help. In my experience, many business owners and professionals choose not to ask for help for three reasons. First, they don’t think they need it. Second, they know they need it but don’t know where to get it. Third, they fear looking “weak.”

My responses: First, we all need help. Sometimes it’s advice; sometimes guidance; and other times a full blown intervention. No matter what one has achieved, there is always a need for growth. Just ask any world-class athlete if they still get coaching and help. Second, help is easier than ever to find. Referrals from colleagues and simply searching on the Internet are two fast ways to start the process. If that’s the real excuse, then the problem is probably deeper and more the last reason I mentioned. I believe that the most self-confident and successful people in any profession are boldly willing to seek and find help. Just like Captain Jack, they don’t waste time in seeking it; are persistent on their attempt; and gain tremendous value and return in investment from it. For both Jack it quenches thirst and is necessary for a healthy and happy life. Same for you…

You have a right to keep your water bowl filled. That might mean your professional skills, the growth and significance of your business, or the quality of your life. Whatever it is, I encourage you to be vigilant over the depth of your bowl by constantly keeping it filled so you never get thirsty and desperate. Captain Jack doesn’t, and neither should you.

Need help identifying where your dish is getting empty, check out my Unleashed® Balance Sheets below. They are free to download and send to me for a no obligation perspective.

Quote of the Week:

“We may encounter many defeats, but we must not be defeated.”

~ Maya Angelou

© 2017 Toro Consulting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Extra Points: The Burden of Reactive Chaos

Dan Weedin Unleashed-40Dogs aren’t normally proactive. Captain Jack and Bella are constantly reacting to sights, sounds, and opportunities happening around them. For example, Captain Jack hates the sound of electronic noises emanating from phones (even if they are on TV). His immediate reaction is obnoxious barking, pathetic whining, and a seek and destroy mentality on the object producing the noise. Dogs have no great concern for their future (at least mine don’t), so reacting is simply a part of their instinct.

Many of us humans choose that same instinct. We use terms like: putting out fires; running around like a chicken with their head cut off; and constantly running. The consequences are working late hours, reducing time with family and friends, lack of productivity, and health problems. I’ve witnessed people defend this behavior as a badge of honor, implying that they perform best under crisis.

That’s just dumb.

There is a very real burden of being in constant reactive chaos. It’s mentally and physically fatiguing; it leads to bad decision-making; and it creates anxiety for employees, co-workers, and family members. I believe if given the choice of being in constant crisis reaction mode versus cool and calm, most people will choose the latter.

Here’s what you can resolve to do this new year to reduce your reactive chaos: Identify areas of recurring and constant chaos or adversity. Find ways to eliminate them, rather than constantly putting bandages on them. Take necessary (and often unpleasant) steps to implement your strategy. Be nimble. Set priorities. Stop trying to please everyone. Get outside help. Be resilient. Enjoy the moment.

Note that crisis will occur when least expected and you’ll need to deal with those unexpected setbacks and adversity. However, if you’ve drastically reduced the amount of chaos through proactive behavior, you’ll ultimately be more resilient and happier.

If you’d like to discuss how I can help you and your company reduce your own reactive chaos and unleash your potential, then please call me at (360) 271-1592 or email me. We can all use help in stopping chasing our tails!

Quote of the Week:

“Errors are the consequence of a complicated life.”

~ Alan Weiss

© 2016 Toro Consulting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

How Will They Know You Were Here?

58842030-Dan+Weedin+%22Unleashed%22-30I was driving in to my Rotary Club meeting this morning and a country song came on the radio that made me pause to think. The song is “Gonna Know We Were Here” by Jason Aldean. The lyrics from the chorus that caught my attention were…

Ain’t scared to ride this train
Make a few marks, leave a few stains
Might slam just a little too hard
Might take it just a little too far
Might burn out like a firework,
Like a shooting star across the sky
And we may not be around in 20 years but they’re sure gonna know we were here
Yeah, they’re sure gonna know we were here

At my club meeting, we had a fascinating speaker. This woman is a nurse that volunteered to go to Africa last year and help with the Ebola outbreak. In fact, this particular woman has been doing volunteer medical work around the globe for 15 years. Going into the most impoverished areas, seeing the most improbable and horrible things, and making a mark on those people and the world.
I’m not suggesting that if all of us aren’t making these heroic efforts that we are failing. As a matter of fact, we all have chances every day to be heroic. We have an opportunity in our business, in our career, and in our personal life to improve the condition of someone else. We’ve got talents and skills to leave a few marks and stains; to be able to say that the world will know you were here.
This is about action; it’s about implementing. Pausing to ponder is fine, but taking action in a bold and confident manner is what moves the needle. The speaker I watched today has been doing that and can say she’s left a mark. We all have opportunities to do the same, maybe not to a global extent, but to very important ones.
How will people know you were here? What are you doing to leave a few marks, leave a few stains…?
© 2016 Toro Consulting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Extra Points – February 9, 2015

This week’s focus point…Do You Believe in Magic?Capt Jack and Dan

Last Friday, I took my adult daughters to the Father-Daughter banquet at the Washington Athletic Club, of where I am a member. While there is a small mix of age ranges (the oldest father-daughter pair have come to 54 straight years!), the majority of the young ladies were, well pretty young. Mindy, Kelli and I had the good fortune of sharing a libation prior to dinner when something really cool happened. Robert showed up…

Robert is a magician that has a prodigious talent for magic tricks with playing cards. He showed up at our table first to show us his trickery. Soon, a crowd gathered. Let’s just say that Robert is GOOD! One of the best I’ve ever seen, in fact. While Kelli wanted really wanted to know how he did it, I was pretty happy just being awed. All three of us (and the entire room) were mesmerized by his skill and artistry for slight of hand, humor, and…magic.

Do you make magic in your career or business? Do you kindle curiosity, awe, and excitement to your customers and clients with your service and products? If not, you’re missing the boat. Robert owned the room. In fact, I picked up one of his business cards (well…his name written on the Ace of Spades). His ability to engage an audience and then follow through with exceptional skill proved to be successful for him. If you’re not owning your own room and creating interest and following through, you might as well be the a magician without a deck of cards to play with. Take a cue from Robert by becoming an object of interest and then delivering with flair and style. That will keep your audience coming back for more.

Do you believe in magic?

© 2015 Dan Weedin. All Rights Reserved

This week’s quote –

Want to discuss this topic? Join the conversation! The next free Weedin Unleashed broadcast is today at 12 pm Pacific.  Click here to get the link.

Extra Points ~ New Paint

14_02_DanCapJackRetouch_001This week’s focus point…New Paint

My wife Barb and I like watching the “Do It Yourself” home shows on TV. I’m not sure we have the gumption to do all of these renovations ourselves, yet we often get ideas for changes. In fact, this weekend we are strategizing over changes in our dining room and living room to try and maximize our space and utilize it more effectively. We often find that we are only using part of what we have and thus not making the most of the house.

As business professionals, we often don’t utilize the majority of our “house,” either. In this case, our talents, skills, and strengths. One of the reasons is because we become complacent. In your house, it’s easy to get comfortable with the look and feel and not change. You can go on for years without making any noticeable change and so you get what you get out of your house.

In business, it’s also easy to avoid making changes, never adding anything new, never shaking things up, or never just simply adding a coat of “new paint” to your equations. The result is becoming stale, stagnant, and unfulfilled. Why not take a cue from these home improvement shows and improve yourself with that new coat of paint, updated living space, or new addition? You never know…you might just find that the new you brings excitement and energy to that “old home!”

© 2014 Dan Weedin. All Rights Reserved

 This week’s quote –

 You’re only given a little spark of madness. You mustn’t lose it.”

~ Robin Williams


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