Extra Points: In Sync

Dan Weedin Unleashed-40Last week, I had a golf swing analysis done, along with 90 minutes of coaching. My game has been inconsistent for the last several years, and after trying to fix myself, I elected to get professional help. I’d also never performed a swing analysis before, and I was eager to see how it worked.

The result was that the foundation of my swing was very good, but had one major flaw. My weight shift was bad, meaning that my arms were coming through faster than the rest of my body causing inconsistency hits and results. I originally thought I was swinging too hard; in reality I was “out of sync.” The golf pro gave me tools and drills to help me get back that feel back. When I inspected my high school yearbook, I found a picture of my swing from my junior year. It was perfect. I’d managed to inadvertently and unknowingly deteriorate over the years and desperately needed expert help to get back “in sync.”

Have you allowed your business, your career, or your life get “out of sync?”

Too often, in any (or all) of these areas, it’s easy to allow past success and satisfaction to grow monotonous and pedestrian. You don’t even realize your “swing” becoming diminished because it “feels” the same. It’s one thing to have that happen to a golf swing (that’s easy to fix). It’s quite another to let it impinge on your business, career, and life.

Go get your own “swing analysis” on your personal and professional life. Get help in the areas that you want to improve or achieve change. Be disciplined to implement that change. And start shooting better scores in the much more important “game” you find yourself playing daily.

“Nothing is a waste of time if you use the experience wisely.”

~ Auguste Rodin

© 2016 Toro Consulting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

 

HELP…I Need Somebody!

Anytime you see a turtle on top of a fence post, you know he had some help.”

~ Alex Haley

Help is one of my all-time favorite songs from The Beatles. I’m pretty sure it has little to do with the lyrics, and more to do with the beat and rhythm. However, there is one very important set of lyrics that is exigent to the song. Let’s take just a moment to inspect these lyrics and see how they can help you grow your career and more rapidly build your business.

“Help, I need somebody; Help, not just anybody…”

Every one of us has needed and will need help in business and life at some point. You may have often been the one helping others, yet it’s common to eschew asking for help when we know we need it. And what’s worse is this – we often “shop” that help as if we’re comparing brands of toothpaste!

It’s a natural to have success spurred by early learning, education, knowledge, mentoring, and coaching. The problem is that analogous to leaving college, many people think that the growth and learning can be scaled down. It ends up being less of a priority and falls behind new sales and a myriad of other business objectives. You won’t find many business professionals stating that they think ongoing knowledge is a bad thing. However, it is common to see a largely diminished desire to reach out for help when it’s not clear that it’s needed.

The reason is three-fold. First, many don’t think they need it. They believe their collected experience and acumen is enough to carry them through anything. Second, they would rather invest in other areas than themselves (employees, equipment, structures). Third, they are embarrassed to admit they might need help.

Here’s the problem… In today’s rapidly changing and volatile world, you need more help than ever before to not only stay afloat, but to be on top of the wave!

Let’s change that paradigm right now with my 4-step fix:

First, consider you as the most important asset and investment to your organization (whether you own it or not). This is a mindset. You must genuinely believe that investing in yourself to constantly and consistently get better every day is not only important, but imperative to career growth and success. There is no better investment you will ever make in life than in yourself.

Second, transfer that knowledge to others. Think of it like being on an airplane and being told to put your mask on first before helping another. You can’t help others if you’re not in solid position. However once you are, you can help others around you to “breathe,” and enhance their own skills and talents.

Third, be vulnerable enough to realize when you need assistance with something in your business. It might be increasing revenue, reducing your risk, managing a transition in management, or improving your leadership acumen and skills. When you need professional help, base it on your return on investment, not just the price. If you’d need a brain surgeon, you wouldn’t seek out the cheapest one. If your child needed advanced education tutoring, you wouldn’t haggle down the price to get a “good deal.” Too many can fall into the trap of cheaper is better because the ROI is all the same. Nothing could be further from the truth. It’s almost always the other way around.

Fourth, make it a priority to implement. Getting advice and help is a huge waste of money and time if you never use it. Implementation is the hardest part because it requires an investment of time and often involves significant change. Neither is easy to deal with, however that’s why you needed to the help to begin with! Commit to putting your newfound education into action. Set metrics for success and chart it to make sure you’re achieving it. When I bought my Fitbit, that little device kept me more accountable to activity and fitness than anything I had ever used before. Without measuring the results of your performance, how will you know you’ve gotten better?

Finally, rinse and repeat. This isn’t a one-time investment in you. That is a common mistake made by business professionals. As long as you’re working in your career (or simply alive for that matter), this continual evolution must continue to bring success, significance, and enrichment. Then you get to live the career and life you always imagined.

Do yourself a favor – ask for help to improve your condition throughout your life; get that help form the person or people that are the best at what they do; and then go help someone else in turn because you have tremendous value yourself.

© 2015 Toro Consulting, Inc. All Rights Reserved

This is my July 2015 column for the Kitsap Business Journal…

Top 10 Tips for Choosing a Coach

58842033-Dan+Weedin+%22Unleashed%22-21I’ve been asked recently what are the factors to consider when choosing an executive or business coach. In case you are wondering for yourself or someone in your company, consider my Top 10…

Here is My Top 10 Tips to Finding the Right Coach or Mentor for You:

  1. Read Testimonials and Call on References. People aren’t coerced into giving a good and honest testimonial. Watch video and read written testimonials and stay alert for key phrases that hint at results.
  2. Referrals. You use referrals to buy cars, homes, and hire insurance and financial brokers. You should utilize the knowledge within your community to find good coaches and mentors, too. You may be surprised as to how many of your colleagues, peers, and friends use coaching. They may be able to quickly point you in the right direction.
  3. Talk. Call the prospective coach. See how quickly they return your call. Have a conversation rather than an email exchange. This is not about prying free advice out of them. It’s about determining your ability to communicate effectively. Rapport is important, but results are more important. Discern what you can gain in both categories the old-fashioned way…. by talking!
  4. Ask Questions. Ask about fees, expectations, accessibility, and anything else that is important to you. Candor, trust, and transparency are crucial for a successful engagement.
  5. Fees. Lower is NOT better. You’re not buying bananas at the grocery store. You’re investing in your future. Coaches that charge what you might consider a high fee get big returns on investment. If they didn’t, they wouldn’t still be in business. If they charge by the hour, watch out! Don’t trade time for money in this case. You don’t want to ever be put in a position where you are worried about the meter running. Know your investment up front. The best coaches in the business charge high fees, but on a set and agreed to amount.
  6. Accessibility. You’ve hired a coach or mentor to have access to them. Make sure they are giving it to you. I return all calls and text messages within 90 minutes, and reply to all emails within 24 hours. These are my guidelines given to clients. Any coach you are working with will have some similar guidelines to accessibility. You may need answers fast. Make sure they are there for you.
  7. Been There, Done That. You want to choose someone who has done what you want to do. If you want to have someone coaching you on speaking, then they need to be a professional speaker that gets paid and speaks all over the world (or at least country). If you hire someone to help you publish a book, they need to have commercially published one themselves. If you’re starting a consulting practice, hire someone that has excelled in his or her consulting profession.
  8. Watch & Read. After referrals, speaking and publishing attract the most new clients to me. It would seem logical to believe that you can find good coaches and mentors by watching them speak and reading their work. Attend their speeches, seminars, and workshops. Go with an open mind ready to learn. Read their work in trade journals, publications, and online. I often receive calls from interested parties based on an article or column I wrote for a trade publication. You should feel confident in speaking to experts that make the effort to give value to you though their work.
  9. Search. Google was actually the way I found my first mentor. I performed a search for insurance consultants and viola, Scott Simmond’s name popped up. Scott is in Maine and I am in Washington State. Regardless, I called him, we talked, and I made the decision within about 10 minutes to hire him.
  10. Cyber Stalk. Once you’ve found them and talked to them, do a little research online. Check out their websites for resources and examples of work. Read the testimonials and list of clients. Does their web site look professional or built by the neighborhood kid in their basement? Look at social media platforms, not for ratings, bit for presence. Most specifically, find them in Linked in and Twitter and read what they post.

Don’t leave the very vital task of choosing a coach or mentor to chance. Do some research first and make an educated decision. The good coaches make it easy for you. And remember, just like wine and dress clothes, you most often get what you pay for.

© 2015 Dan Weedin. All Rights Reserved

Extra Points – GPS

This week’s focus point…GPS14_02_DanCapJackRetouch_001

Last Thursday, I was driving home with my daughter on the last leg of a week-long, cross-country trip that took us 3,004 miles from doorstep to doorstep. I had the GPS on even though I knew the way. I always like to know about how long it takes to get home.

I was getting frustrated with the GPS as she kept telling me to take an alternate route home. I couldn’t understand it. After all, I knew where I was going. Why would this electronic device try to take me off my own course? In jest, I kept telling her that I was simply going to ignore her and go my own way. She had the last laugh.

Turns out the GPS had a built-in sensor for traffic. She was trying to help me avoid a huge traffic jam being caused by the start of a 3-day weekend on the Interstate. By the time I realized my mistake, it was too late.

How often does that happen to us? We think our way is the right way; we can do it best by ourselves; we don’t need any help…we’re smart. Like I laughed off the good advice from the GPS, we also often disregard opportunities to really rapidly advance our careers and improve our lives when we don’t seek help.

Do yourself a favor. Find some smart GPS to guide you “home.” Business coaches and mentors often sense those “traffic jams” that await ahead of you and can divert you to roads that lead to faster and more effective destinations. You ignore at your own peril. I wish I had been more humble with that GPS…I would have been home faster. Are you humble and smart enough to take the right road for your success?

 

© 2014 Dan Weedin. All Rights Reserved

This week’s quote – 

We can’t be brilliant by ourselves.”

~ Patricia Fripp

Inaugural Unleashed Summit on September 23rd. Learn more and register now to save your seat to this dynamic event.

New Weedin Unleashed today at 12:00 pm PST. Join for free.

 

Creating Your Own World Cup Experience

Calling me a casual soccer fan is like saying Seattle Seahawks All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman is understated. World Cup

I watched the first USA match in the World Cup on Monday with my daughter. Of course, like everyone else I root hard for the home team. As a novice when it comes to soccer, I’m just guessing at what’s going on and know that when we score a goal that’s good, and when the other guys do, that’s bad. On Monday, we had just enough more good than bad!

I will continue to watch this monumental event that captivates the world for 30 days. And then I doubt I will watch anymore soccer again until maybe the Olympics or the next World Cup in 4 years. I’m just not a fan of the sport. So what compels me to spend any of my time actively participating? Two things ~ national pride and the stakes.

To get casual fans interested in these games, both are required. With only national pride and no stakes, it’s simply a novelty. While I would be happy with a USA win, I doubt I would do more than have passing interest when the news pops up on my iPhone. It would be very similar to my interest in pre-season NFL games and I’m a huge football fan. With only high stakes and no national interest, it’s invisible. If the USA weren’t competing in the World Cup, I might not even be aware it was going on. The combination of the two catapult it into my stream of consciousness and creates deep interest.

The same is true with your business…

In order for a casual “fan” to consider you an object of interest, you need to generate two things ~ emotion (i.e. national pride) and a valuable return on investment (i.e. stakes). Without both, you will be nothing more than a novelty or worse, invisible.

Too many business owners and entrepreneurs try to use logic as a base for creating interest and making sales. That’s a mistake. Logic makes people think. Emotion makes people act. People buy Mercedes cars, Rolex watches, and Prada handbags because of how it makes them feel about themselves, not becasue they are practical. Emotion is the first and foremost response you need to create in your target audience. You do that by showing dramatically improved condition.

In my marketing for coaching and mentoring business owners and entrepreneurs, I focus on my ability to help them rapidly realize an improved and more joyous lifestyle through accelerated sales and revenue, more discretionary time to do things that they enjoy, and increased peace of mind. I could focus on the methodology of getting there, but that’s boring. In the end, people want to be happier. What makes them happier is all individual, yet in my experience they tend to focus on money, time, and peace of mind. That’s where I focus my energy on the intellectual property (writing, speaking, presenting) I generate.

What about you? What is your product or service that improves the lives or conditions of people and businesses? Do you spend your time boring them with details or exciting them with how you make there life better? How can you assure that you keep that momentum rolling and sustainable?

I undoubtedly will never be an avid soccer fan, but I am certain to sustain my interest in the World Cup as long as I have a rooting interest and the stakes are high. The event has captured my attention. You have the great opportunity to do the same thing in your business. If you’re successful, then you will spend the foreseeable future with the ball landing safely in the back of the net.

© 2014 Dan Weedin. All Rights Reserved

 

Unleashed Case Study #3 – Can You Make the Chair Turn?

Shakira
Shakira

I enjoy watching NBC’s The Voice on television. I like it better than American Idol for several reasons (including that they boast my Colombian paisana, Shakira as a judge, but I digress)….

The four judges (also including Adam Levine, Usher, and Blake Shelton) listen to just the voice of the singer in the blind trials. That singer can only impress with their voice. Their looks, their dress, their dance skills, won’t help them. Just their voice. The judges that want to coach them then turn their chairs around within the 90 seconds allotted. If there is more than one, they “fight” to influence the singer to choose them as a coach.

Two important things that you need to know based on this show becasue it can make you better in whatever profession you are in…

1. These singers get 90 seconds to make a BIG impression. That’s it, that’s all. They need to be supremely influential and an object of interest with their most powerful gift (or “value”). Think about your business. You also need to be influential and become an object of interest to your audience quickly. While you may have more than 90 seconds, you don’t have long to engage and capture their attention. Whether you’re speaking publicly to a large group or having a first meeting with a prospective client, your “voice” needs to be more than just heard in those first few minutes. You need to turn a chair.

2. Coaches often duke it out in trying to influence a young artist to choose them as the coach. Even though much of it is based in good humor, there is always a strong plea based on the talents and how they align with a coach. If I was an aspiring country artist, why wouldn’t I choose Blake Shelton? If I was a young R&B artist, Usher would make the most sense. Shakira is skilled in not only music, but choreography and building a global base. Adam Levine would attract the eclectic and rock side. From whom do you seek advice from? Is it from people that are where you currently are (peers), or is it from people that have achieved what you want to achieve and can quickly guide you there? Mastermind groups are fine for what they are – accountability and support. Everyone needs a “coach” that will take them to their desired state rapidly. That’s what these young artists on The Voice want, and that’s what these judges deliver.

Look, if you want to accelerate your ability to be influential and grow your business, you’d better get really good at the first 90 seconds. The best way to do that is to get coaching from someone that can help you maximize your talent.

© 2014 Dan Weedin. All Rights Reserved

Unleashed Is Off and Running

The first two members of my new, exclusive private coaching program are now signed up! Are you ready to join them on a very special course to unleash your Captain Jackpotential and maximize your talent?

Learn more and register

This program is limited to 12 people and the first 2 are out of the gate. Here is a brief synopsis of what you will gain by being a member…

  • Enhanced ability to unleash your potential, maximize your talent, and run boldly through your open gate. The result is you get to live in the lifestyle you desire.
  • Unleashing the fear that holds you back from taking risks and realizing rewards. The result is you enjoy a life free of stress and anxiety while achieving your dreams.
  • Provide you with a broader, more global perspective of your business. The result is you will maximize your ability to earn income and grow because your worldview has become an open gate!
  • Enhanced leadership skills as a business owner, entrepreneur, or executive. The result is by being more skilled in communications and influence, you will unleash your employees to improve themselves and exponentially improve your business.
  • Enhanced thought leadership skills. The result is by being an object of interest; you will generate more opportunities where people seek you out, not the other way around.
  • Guidance in developing a personally tailored intellectual property game plan (includes publishing and speaking). The result is the more people see your work and value, the more people you will help run through their open gate, and the more personal reward you will achieve.

Sound good? Then click on the link above to learn even more. This inaugural year is at a special price and next year will increase. Why not take fill advantage of your time and investment right now?

© 2014 Dan Weedin. All Rights Reserved

Winner, winner….

Winner, winner, chicken dinner!

Last week I announced that anyone buying a book over the 2 double dog days during my book signing (and those that had already purchased) were entered into a drawing for 30 days of coaching. We have a winner!

Captain Jack drew out a name and the winner is Debbie Wardrop, Debbie is the General Manager at The Resort at Port Ludlow. I’m looking forward to helping her in any way I can.

Congratulations, Debbie!

© 2014 Dan Weedin. All Rights Reserved

Kicking Ass Doesn’t Entail Yours Getting Kicked!

I had a recent conversation with a client of mine. I have tremendous respect and admiration for her as a person and business owner. That being said, she provided a teachable moment…

I owe her an hour of coaching and asked her about scheduling some time to do it. Her response was that she would love to except she is working incredibly long and brutal hours to assure that she has a strong year. In other words, her mindset was that in order to kick ass, it meant getting hers kicked! She never said that, but it’s what she’s doing. There seems to often be this prevailing thought among hard workers that hours grinding the stone is the best way to be successful. No, it’s the best way to die too early.

Think about this… If you’re too overwhelmed with work that you can’t invest ONE HOUR on improving yourself, this is the brightest red danger flag. Your problems start with poor planning, improper setting of priorities, time management mishaps, and inability to delegate. It also most often involves you thinking that the only way to get ahead and stay ahead is to be constantly working. If you ever say “I don’t have time for help,” that’s your first clue that you actually need it!

Life balance is one of the top 3 things I’m asked to speak on. As technology escalates, so does the pressure to be “virtual” and “just in time” for everyone. The problem is that your clients don’t expect that. You do.

If you’re pushing yourself to work more than 8 hours a day, you’re doing something wrong. The solution may be dropping baggage that you’ve been unwilling to discard. It might mean saying no to others. It might also mean training others to do the work that you are currently doing and are overqualified for. Take a cue from our financial planner friends. Pay yourself first…in this case not with money but with something more valuable. An investment in your personal development, growth, and skills will more quickly earn you more income and provide you with more discretionary time.

Now doesn’t that sound like more fun?

Copyright 2014 Dan Weedin. All rights reserved