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What is CEO Management? How Can It Work for Me?

What is CEO Management? How Can It Work for Me?

While there is no such thing as a “typical CEO”, one recurring theme seems to be a brain with no “OFF” switch and the constant desire to grab napkins and post-it notes for jotting, or run to the whiteboard every time an amazing idea pops up (which is always).  If you find that by the end of the day you are overrun with scribbled notes, unfinished thoughts, and an overwhelming sense of panic that all of these great ideas will slip away like the fragments of a dream upon awakening, you are not alone. But what if you could transform all those crazy notes and abbreviated gibberish into an actual task list that can then be delegated to whomever to get it done?  You could bring your ideas to full fruition, and your panic can be replaced by peace of mind.  This concept is called CEO Management…an accountability partner to assist you in ending “Creative Overwhelm” once and for all. ***** If a picture really says a thousand words, here are 3000 of them.  Check out this really good example of our latest CEO Management client in the following three pictures.  Picture 1 was a whiteboard brainstorming session that happened on a Sunday work day as my client planned a 2 day summit of topics and speakers all by herself. (This is a great creative day!) Picture 2 was after 4 hours with me as we went through all 3 whiteboards of potential topics and speakers. The result was 16 hours of programming for a 2 day live event complete with confirmed speakers, confirmed topics, panels and breakouts of over 50...
Get ‘Er Done!  7 Daily Productivity Tips For Business Owners

Get ‘Er Done! 7 Daily Productivity Tips For Business Owners

The snow banks in Boston aren’t the only things piling up.  When you can’t seem to get things done, when you’re running out of surface space on your desk to work, it’s time to realize that you are getting in your own way.   Are you stuck?  You don’t have to be!   There are sure fire things you can do to get yourself unstuck and keep the momentum going. CHECK YOUR ATTITUDE AT THE BEGINNING OF THE DAY: Do you wake up grouchy, tired, dreading a picky customer you are meeting with that day?   If you start your day with negative undertones you are setting yourself up for personal disaster.  And remember, you are at the helm.  You set the tone at the office and if you’re stressed, unhappy, and unmotivated don’t be surprised if there is a trickle-down effect.  If you’re typically not a morning person, find a way to become one or at least find a way to look and act the part.  Surprisingly enough, you will find yourself actually feeling better.  This will help you handle those tasks you don’t like or want to get out of the way.  You’ll also be setting a good example for those who work with and for you. PRIORITIZE YOUR WORK: Put the unpleasant tasks in a pile and do them first, if possible.  If some of them are too overwhelming, grab some coffee or do something you really like to do in between to break things up.  It makes sense to tackle the things you don’t want to do and get them out of the way.  Then you have the...
Take Me to Your Leader… Oh Wait, That’s Me! 9 Steps to Building Your Dream Team

Take Me to Your Leader… Oh Wait, That’s Me! 9 Steps to Building Your Dream Team

You can buy your team pizza and bring in large lattes from Starbucks to distribute, but unless you are an effective leader and manager these little niceties are a waste of your time and dollars.  This will not make them a better support staff for your business.  This unique and interesting group of individuals who make up your team needs to support each other and, even if they don’t always like each other, have a mutual respect with common goals…goals that you as their manager should have ingrained into them since the day they joined your company. It is necessary to learn the right managerial techniques that are going to motivate your employees.  If you are their leader and haven’t really done enough to make this a nice cohesive unit, a well oiled machine, it’s not too late to implement changes that will morph your good company into a great company, or a mediocre staff into the best dream team ever!  Here are some tips to help: Don’t assume that everybody is motivated by the same thing.  For some it is simply money alone, but for many they are looking for a sense of purpose, or finding that niche to use their skill set.  Hone in on this for each individual while also making your expectations clear. Respect the differences of your staff.  If you have hired a diverse group of individuals, realize that they can get along with each other without being best buddies.  Celebrate their unique attributes and what each person individually brings to the table.  Your managerial style may differ from person to person, and that’s...
“It’s Not You; It’s Me….”  Losing another employee?   Yeah, it’s you.

“It’s Not You; It’s Me….”  Losing another employee?   Yeah, it’s you.

They come into your office nervous, stammering, and uncomfortable.  Some of them have letters of resignation promising two weeks, others are carrying their family photographs and juggling their plants in copy machine boxes, ready to make a rocket fire exit.  In this land of opportunity employees moving on and moving out are quite common, but if you have a revolving door of unhappy staff, don’t ask yourself, “Did I hire the wrong person?”   Ask yourself, “Am I being the wrong person?”  Chances are, it’s not them…it’s you. As the boss, the CEO, the manager, the president, whatever Big Cheese title is your claim to fame, it can be difficult (if not downright impossible) to understand what it is about your personality or management style that has the associates posting resumes on the internet (on your dime) and devising their escape plan.  Let’s start with the obvious and see if any of these traits define you: BELITTLING:  Does your criticism go beyond making helpful suggestions?  If you are rolling your eyes, sighing, folding your arms, and talking to your staff like you would a two year old, belittling behavior like this can suck the life and enthusiasm out of even the strongest personality.  Practice on your dog if you have to, but learn how to communicate in a positive light.  A little rehearsal can go a long way in maintaining healthy, respectful relationships within your office. MICRO MANAGING: This overused term needs no explanation.  Unless your employees are coming to you for assistance or asking for a bit of direction, back off and let them do their jobs. BULLYING: You...
Are You Consuming Your Career, or is Your Career Consuming You?

Are You Consuming Your Career, or is Your Career Consuming You?

If you are wondering with a snicker if there is a difference in the two, then congratulations! You are most likely in Group 1 and wake up whistling when you start working, have a goofy nonstop grin on your face, and dream about what the next day is going to bring. If you are in Group 2, you hesitantly clicked on this blog post because you are afraid to read — you are in so deep that you wonder if you will ever pull yourself out, drowning in the black sea of paperwork, unanswered emails, voice mails you don’t want to listen to, and ultimate despair. Yeah, a little melodramatic, but sadly it’s also a fact. GET OUT OF THE QUAGMIRE! Did you choose to be an entrepreneur or pick your present career path so you could be swallowed up by all that you encompass? Nope, didn’t think so. Then it’s time to effect some serious change. If you want to avoid the ulcer that’s undoubtedly going to be part of your future (and really want to click your voice mail button without cringing), these three simple steps are imperative. Make a list of everything you do. (Okay, the major things you do.)    Arrange the items in your list in order of priority. Highlight the items on this list that you absolutely despise doing. All right, here comes the easy part. Look at your highlighted items. If these are tedious tasks that bog you down, things that are just too time consuming and keep you away from the things you love to do, then why are you doing them?...
JOINT VENTURES…  ENJOYING SUCCESS WITH THE RIGHT COMPANY

JOINT VENTURES… ENJOYING SUCCESS WITH THE RIGHT COMPANY

If you are considering a joint venture with another company, you’re actually thinking WAY beyond yourself and your own goals.  You are thinking BIG.  Strength in numbers, as they say.  Think about it… this goes beyond the whole “I’ll scratch your back if you’ll scratch mine” mentality.  This is mutual collaboration.  This is it. This is the real deal. There are many strong reasons behind forming a joint venture, even if your business already has great growth potential and innovative ideas.  Think about it!   Why not if you can expand your business, move into new markets, perhaps even concentrate on overseas ventures?  It is worth undertaking if you are able to grow your business, and the joint venture allows you access to more markets and gives you increased technical knowledge and resources.  Before you jump in with what seems to be a perfect company to join forces with, take time to consider these questions: 1)      Are the objectives of the venture clear?  Make sure that there is constant communication with all parties involved and that nothing is assumed. 2)      Are the objectives the same?  This is important… you need to be working towards the same common goals. 3)      Are the management styles the same?  Different cultures and backgrounds could result in poor outcomes.   Be careful with this.  Discuss management techniques in-depth, and make sure that similarities outweigh the differences. 4)      Do both parties bring the same balance of assets, expertise and investment to the relationship?  If it is too imbalanced there will likely be problems. 5)      Is there an agreement on the type and amount of leadership which will...
Trapped In A Time Warp?   12 Signs that You Are Stuck & Will Lose Your Butt to the Competition

Trapped In A Time Warp? 12 Signs that You Are Stuck & Will Lose Your Butt to the Competition

Once upon a time we all lived in small towns, or at least tight knit communities and neighborhoods.  If you needed your hair cut you’d go to Hank’s Barber Shop, you bought your sandwiches from Sidoti’s Deli, and the pharmacy on the corner didn’t belong to Walgreens.  Businesses didn’t have to market, network, advertise, tweet or blog about their services to get and keep their customers.  They offered their goods and services, and people came for them.  It’s how business was done. That was then.  Welcome to the modern world!   If you think you can rely on your business surviving the old fashioned way, where people buy from you because they always have, stop and think again!  Even if you’re located in a sparsely populated burg, the town folk now have the internet, Iphones and all kinds of other techy gadgets… they can find it cheaper, better and quicker on Amazon if you don’t get your head in the game and convince them they want their money flowing in your direction. Are you going to just trust fate?   You basically have two choices:  To be passive or to be proactive.   Obviously choosing to do nothing is about as passive as you can get… might as well throw in the towel now and save yourself the hassle and grief.  If you are immobile and stuck, you are in serious trouble.  The protective bubble you are wrapped in may feel comfy, but this cloak is indeed deceiving.  You are trapped in a time warp and will eventually lose your butt to the competition.  Make sure these obvious issues don’t apply to...
DEEP THOUGHT FOR THE DAY:   What You Don’t Know You Don’t Know Can Kill Your Business

DEEP THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: What You Don’t Know You Don’t Know Can Kill Your Business

  Everything is status quo… you do it all the same way all the time.  That’s always how you’ve done it and it works.  Well, maybe it doesn’t work well, but it works for you.   Sure it’s hard work, but it is supposed to be hard.  (“YUP, that’s why it’s called work”, said Grandpa.)   It’s been ingrained into your brain that this is only way you will ever get ahead… Work work work and more work when you’re done with that.   This is how it’s done.   Consider this…It all boils down to what you know.  That’s how you run your life, how you run your business, how you have always navigated through your days.  Have you ever asked yourself what if….?   What if there was more?  Is it remotely possible that how you’ve always done it just isn’t enough?  What if what you don’t know you don’t know is killing your business? EXAMPLE #1:  Remember the movie The Matrix?  Keanu Reeves played a computer programmer named Neo, who learned the real truth about his fake life and was drawn into a rebellion against the machines, which involved other people who had also been freed from the “dream world”.   Okay, maybe comparing your life and your business to this sci-fi classic is a bit of a stretch, but the concept is similar.  Neo was okay with how things were going day to day because that’s all he really knew, until his eyes were opened to the truth.  How could your eyes be opened? EXAMPLE #2:  How many smart phones are smarter than the person using them?  EXACTLY!  These phones come...
Things Are Perfect, Well Sort of….So Why Are You Job Hunting Again?

Things Are Perfect, Well Sort of….So Why Are You Job Hunting Again?

Uh-oh, there you go again… the two columns with “pros” on one side and “cons” on the other.  Before you get overly absorbed into that page of truth and tell all, perhaps it’s also time to make a different and separate list for your own self-discovery.  If it makes you feel better, go on and finish the other one first, the one you are comfortable with and could do in your sleep.  Hmmmm pros… “great team to work with, awesome benefits, pay is pretty good…” and of course the typical con side, “too much stress, little free time, not enough autonomy.”   Sound familiar?   It should.  Job after job after job it’s always the same things that you love, the same things that you hate.  The pen comes out about every two years to do the whole pros/cons thing…or maybe it’s done on the computer or Ipad (because it is, after all, 2016). Now let’s work on your self-discovery list.  Rest assured, this will not be as easy.  Forget the columns, the numbered lists and bullet points.  These are quickie questions that won’t require any tabulations.  You already know what thrills and what kills with every place you have ever been employed.  Ask yourself these simple questions and see if you can figure YOU out. Is it boredom that sets you on a quest for a new venture? Are you craving more excitement that you’re not getting currently? Do you get in a rut easily? Do you find yourself always thinking that you could do a better job managing the company or other employees? Are you the go-to person for...
TO THE BOSS:  12 Daunting Statements That Your Employees Are Afraid to Say to Your Face

TO THE BOSS: 12 Daunting Statements That Your Employees Are Afraid to Say to Your Face

Being the boss has its perks. Usually you have a good parking space, you can set hour own hours (which basically means that although you are ALWAYS working no one is tracking how long your lunch is, etc.), and you have a position of authority and purpose. Before you go feeling too smug and comfy, grab yourself a cup of coffee, kick back, and prepare yourself… You are the boss, and there are things you need to know. This isn’t about time management and sales goals for the upcoming year. NOPE — this one is about you. If you are sharp, you are cognizant of the invisible wall which separates you from the rest of the staff. There are jokes you won’t be in on, certain things that you won’t understand, and a lot of words which will be left unsaid. It is time for you to hear those words. This is not a comprehensive list, and not all will apply to you. If the shoe doesn’t fit, pat yourself on the back and move on. Check yourself as you read these, and try not to be oversensitive to the ones that do apply. 1) “Your breath smells…and you have body odor”. YIKES. We can’t say this one easily to a co-worker (maybe we can hint and hand them a breath mint), but it definitely won’t be shared with the boss. Did you have sushi and catfish for lunch? Did you catch a whiff of yourself as you’ve been stressed out, nervous and sweating up a storm? If you smell it guaranteed they do too. You’ve got a big...