Archive for March, 2012

If You Do What You Have Always Done, You’ll Get A Surprise!

What are you doing that you did two (or ten) years ago that isn’t bringing you results like it did when you started?

If you do what you have always done, you’ll get LESS than  what you always got before!  Not the same. It is the law of diminishing returns in your life and business. You can’t keep doing the same thing without losing the returns from the action or practice.

I heard a trainer say, “I send my proposals by FAX because no one else is doing it.” I asked him, “Why don’t you send it out by Pony Express? No one is doing that either.” He didn’t think it was funny (I still do).

Here is why: I tried sending a proposal by Western Union Telegram about six years ago. It didn’t even get noticed.

If it is an old practice that no one is doing there is a good reason for that fact. It is obsolete.

I believe in doing things different, but not something that has been replaced by history or modern technology. In presentations I use less overhead projectors (I am getting away from traditional PowerPoint – most people are grateful!).

I ask more questions than give facts in presentations.

I get my news like most people – off the internet or mobile phone.

I don’t use a typewriter.

I eliminated most of my file cabinets.

I don’t go into a bank to withdraw cash, make deposits and transfer funds.

I don’t wear pleated pants.

The list goes on…

Jim Mathis is an international speaking professional, executive coach and Best Selling author of Reinvention Made Easy: Change Your Strategy, Change Your Results.  You may subscribe to his free monthly newsletter by sending a message to:  subscribe@jimmathis.com.

Cutting Remarks

How a simple hair cut became a management lesson…

I have gone to the same place for over a year because they do a great job at styling and everyone is friendly. There is value in the visit.

There is always drama, though. This stylist was my fifth in five visits there…  Each has left, or been fired. I can’t even remember her name (after the last four told me theirs I quit storing names of people who I will probably never see again). It just doesn’t matter.

While in the chair she started spontaneously explaining their new marketing plan.  It is targeted to walk-ins and “first-time” customers exclusively.  They have no plan to retain their existing customers with anything valuable.  She said the business owner (her boss) won’t put any money into marketing techniques or incentives for employees to encourage long-term customers.

What is familiar about this story is that each stylist I have met on previous visits (Rick, Tiffany, Brittany and Sherry) all said the same thing in frustration to other customers.  Is it any wonder no employees have stayed longer than a month?

Okay, her business short-coming is that I don’t need to hear about this.

Just a light trim. Not deep cuts.

I predict that she won’t be there on the next visit. Also they will be closed within the year. When you deal with that much turnover internally and externally…

Looks like I will be shopping for a new cut… sooner than later.  What do you think?

Jim Mathis is an international professional speaker and author of the Best-selling Reinvention Made Easy: Change Your Strategy, Change Your Results. To receive his free monthly e-newsletter with articles like this send a SUBSCRIBE message to: subscribe@jimmathis.com.

Are You Becoming Extinct?

It can happen. It already has to Circuit City, Pontiac, Schlitz, Gateway computers, Borders, Aloha Airlines, Mercury, Palm and many others. The vultures are gathering for AIG, the Gap, Sears, K-Mart, Blackberry and Eddie Bauer.

It’s a competitive world and just while you were reading this, many other businesses closed their doors for the last time. They couldn’t adapt to a challenging economy and they got swept away with no loyal customer base to support them or their brands. They failed to create a culture that would stand the test of change or the test of time. They failed to be different and settled for down.

Many more organizations have changed successfully. They were faced with a choice and they chose reinvention over extinction. Companies like Motorola, Novell, Autodesk, Domino’s, IBM, Godiva, Toyota, Ford Motors, Apple and many, many more reinvented themselves and carved out new industries and market niches.

Study those who have taken common-sense ideas and turned them into their personal difference. Look for ways you can adopt their ideas, methods and concepts. Their techniques aren’t very deep or difficult. In fact you might be surprised at how simple and easy they are. Most will seem like common sense. They are so easy, in fact that they will make you angry at yourself for not thinking of them on your own. They are so obvious that they will make you frustrated that you didn’t see them and act before now.

They are so simple that they will make you uncomfortable with the way you have living and running your business.

Good.

Jim Mathis is an international speaking professional, executive coach and Best Selling author of Reinvention Made Easy: Change Your Strategy, Change Your Results.  You may subscribe to his free monthly newsletter by sending a message to:  subscribe@jimmathis.com.

Most People Are a “10” at Something

I believe most people are a “10” at something.

The problem is, they are in a position where they can only produce at a “4” level and are either mis-matched or extremely frustrated. So they do work at a “2” level and just get by.  Meanwhile the people who are a “10” (your All Stars) at some skill and are in the right place to excel are putting out “10” level performance.

If you are a good leader, you should hire people to take on the authority that their “10” will produce and stop trying to make everyone else fit into that mold.  It will be a lot less work for you… and them (a lot less frustration on yours and their parts, too!).

A good manager can find out who is a 10 at what task and make that their main job. A bad manager tries to make everyone be on the same level.  “All Stars” are frustrated with this and the lower level producers… well, they didn’t want to do it anyway.  Right?

Start treating people based on the results they bring in. Start hiring people to do a project without having to ask you if you want them to do it first. Start spending time seeing who is best at which authoritative task and let them have free reign – sink or swim on their own.

Then go to a relaxing place and take a breath. Get ready, because the freedom this creates will create more opportunity for you as the leader to do more creative work, make fewer tough decisions and handle the other people in your organization more effectively.

Jim Mathis is

Rewarding Your “All Stars”

Airlines do this all the time. So do hotels, rental car companies and many in the travel industry. Be a top customer and we will give you perks. The more you buy or do business with us, the more perks you will receive. Produce seldom and pay what everyone else pays, sit where everyone else sits, stay in rooms like everyone else.

If you reward people for producing more – whether employees who are more productive, or customers who bring in more business – they should get something tangible that everyone else doesn’t receive.

And WHAT you reward with should be different! Lebron James left the Cleveland Cavaliers basketball team for… not money, the prestige of playing for a team that had a better chance of producing a World Championship ring – and a team that would give him more authority. He actually didn’t take the highest pay offer. He took the opportunity of playing for a team with other basketball stars on it.

Why do you think some baseball teams never can get top players to come or perform great when they do a

Yes, the headlines always want you to think about the money, but if only the rich teams got the top players, St. Louis and Milwaukee would rank at the bottom constantly below teams that had more money.

They don’t, though.

What can we take away from this lesson in rewards and All Star performers?  If a bench-warmer complains, challenge them to produce at a higher level and offer the perks they want to do that for you.  Baseball managers do this all the time.  The consistently good players get in the game more and get taken out less often. “You want to play more, then raise your average at the plate or in the field.”
Conversely, stop treating the All Stars like bench-warmers. Do you think Albert Pujols has to be told when to show up to practice? Do you think Reggie Jackson had to be forced to spend time in the batting cage?  No.

A good manager knows how to see who on his/her team can produce and at what level.

Jim Mathis is an international speaking professional, executive coach and Best Selling author of Reinvention Made Easy: Change Your Strategy, Change Your Results.  You may subscribe to his free monthly newsletter by sending a message to:  subscribe@jimmathis.com.

To Print, or Not to Print

Carol Burnett in paying homage to Betty White on her 90th birthday in January held up a copy of Variety with a revue of Betty’s appearance on her show in the 1970’s.  Carol smiled and said, “Remember this kids?  We used to call this a ‘newspaper.’”

Newspapers constantly remind us that the stock market is down and carry negative information slanted for their political or personal biases.  It is no surprise that newspaper sales.  But negative news isn’t the sole reason for this.

Print media is being reinvented to digital format.  If you are in the newspaper or magazine business you are seeing a tsunami that is wiping away the foundations your industry was built on.  The next three to five years will probably change the way we receive and digest news forever.

I heard a conference attendee say to the crowd: “If you want your news NOW, go online with your smart phone.  If you want your news later, wait on a television newscast. If you want it tomorrow, buy a newspaper. If you want it next week, subscribe to a magazine.”

No wonder people are tired of hearing bad news about unemployment, lack of jobs and financial crises from an industry that is in panic mode. They tend to want us to panic with them. There is camaraderie in suffering.

Jim Mathis is an international professional speaker and author of the Best-selling Reinvention Made Easy: Change Your Strategy, Change Your Results. To receive his free monthly e-newsletter with articles like this send a SUBSCRIBE message to: subscribe@jimmathis.com.

Panic At The Pump?

With gasoline and oil prices soaring this year, the economy seems to be teetering on the brink. Panic sets in as supply decreases and demand increases dramatically. It is cyclical… and expected.

If you woke up this morning and said, “The economy is down!,” then I imagine that your spending is down; your budgeting is down; your staff/employees are down and your customers, too, are down; and your business is down.  But if you woke up and said, “Everything today is different than it has ever been!,” then probably your spending is different; your budgeting is different; your staff/employees are different; your customers are different; and, yes, your business is more different than it has ever been.

Why such a bold statement? Because many businesses have been UP in the past three years and have taken advantage of value they present in the eyes of the public to soar to new heights. Lexus has made money. Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s have made money. Apple has made money. Dollar General Stores have made money. Toyota (with all of the problems it had from faulty gas pedals, an earthquake and tsunami) has made money.

The companies who have struggled or gone out of business altogether were struggling in the “good” economy of six years ago – Saturn, Pontiac, Sears, K-Mart and Blockbuster to name a few. There are many more.

We are very short-sighted when it comes to economic reactions. We see the immediate and not the overall picture and it causes us to panic and stumble into the dark. We lack a long-range vision for what is going on in the environment around us.

You are either up or down and that influences every decision you make.  Only you can decide the attitude which determines your altitude.

Shift your thinking to how you can be different and stop being “down” all the time.  The difference in your approach may change your value to the world and you will be UP when others around you are constantly DOWN.

Jim Mathis is an international professional speaker and best-selling author of Reinvention Made Easy: Change Your Strategy, Change Your Results.  To subscribe to his monthly free e-zine and receive articles like this, simply send a SUBSCRIBE message to us.


Newsletter Sign Up

Share this blog.

Bookmark and Share

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 2,042 other followers

Calendar

March 2012
S M T W T F S
« Feb   Apr »
 123
45678910
11121314151617
18192021222324
25262728293031

Pages

Twitter Feeds

  • “Where there is no guidance the people fall, But in abundance of counselors there is victory.” bible.com/100/pro.11.14.… 3 hours ago
  • Tradeshows: Little return for the money you spent getting into it. I hate being a sideshow at the dance... "Nobody puts Baby in the corner!" 2 days ago
  • "One of my spiritual gifts is clarifying the obvious." -Matt Heard, Northland A Church Distributed 2 weeks ago
  • “But I have trusted in Your lovingkindness; My heart shall rejoice in Your salvation.” Psalms 13:5 bible.com/100/psa.13.5.n… 2 weeks ago
  • I like to make people think about things they don’t like to think about…. And do something about it! 2 weeks ago
  • emailinc.net/public_message… 2 weeks ago
  • Thank you @Chamber_Master, the originator of the survey on chamber membership changes I received yesterday. Great info on member trends! 2 weeks ago
  • What do Chamber members want most? Networking with meaning & benefits for membership. Are you showing how to network and creating value? 2 weeks ago
  • Survey by MACE: Businesses leaving chambers of commerce because lack of value in their membership and time. NOT because no activities to do. 2 weeks ago
  • New occupation for Millennials: "Full-time, stay at home son/daughter." 3 weeks ago

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 2,042 other followers


%d bloggers like this: