Thursday, 30 June 2016

Are you a diminisher or are you an amplifier?

First I want to begin by identifying what the difference is between a diminisher and an amplifier. I will include some exerts from experts. Then I want to give you a personal example, and lastly of course the take away.

So what am I referring to when I say someone is a diminisher or an amplifier? They sound pretty obvious so you should be able to follow along with me.

When you are around someone who is a diminisher you feel that they steal your energy, take the ownership for any accomplishment. They do not care about your ideas or input. Someone who is a diminisher will make decisions without consulting you. They become controlling, dismiss your natural ability and talent and worse of all they promote fear.

Sounds like a vampire sucking the life out of you.

So why put yourself around people like this?

Well sometime we feel that we do not have a choice. However, we do. We do have choices, we just tend to take the easy and comfortable route because this is what comes naturally to us.

Who are diminishers? They can be disguised as anyone; your teacher, doctor, boss, peers, husband or wife, girlfriend or boyfriend, parents, and even your siblings. Can people younger than you become diminishers? I would have to say yes.

You would think that someone who is a diminisher can only be a person who is older than you and who has authority over you, but this is not the case. Younger less mature people can be diminishers too. If you feel that you cannot preform in your best natural abilities and that you are sacrificing growth than you are with a diminisher.

To get a little of topic here, can babies be diminishers in our lives? Yes, they can, however, this leads us back on topic, diminishers don't have to always be this way. They can become amplifiers.

Now stop and think for a minute, "do you have a controlling personality? Do you give people a chance to be heard, I mean truly listen to them, empathize and apply their ideas? Do you think that you are always right? Do you tell people what to do, instead of brainstorming with them?"

So how did you do? Did you answer yes, no, yes, yes?

Are diminishers bad people, who cannot accomplish anything? No, they are better if they work alone, sounds similar to an introvert.

Diminishers can become amplifiers, can this also be true vise versa? Well let's have a look at what am amplifier looks like.

The easy way for me to describe an amplifier is by taking the meaning and applying it someone. So what I mean by that is amplifiers are people who bring out your best efforts. To preform at your best, amplifiers guide you through obstacles. They provide you with the tools needed to make decisions that will create opportunities.

"In every failure there is an opportunity."

Amplifiers give you the resources needed to recognize these opportunities that are embedded in failures.

I can just say that an amplifier is the complete opposite of a diminisher but that would not do it justice. Ask yourself;

"How is what I know, getting in the way of what I don't know?"

Amplifiers get out of your way, diminishers stop you in your tracks.

Okay so now that you have an understanding of what a diminisher and an amplifier looks like, let me give you a personal example.

I met with an acquaintance about one month ago, the reason for this meeting was my intrigue into the failed company of which she worked for. I want to give you a very brief background as to who she is, what she has been working on and of course her boss.

Let's call her Lisa. She is a well rounded individual. Formally educated and also looks for ways to grow in life. She has attended business and personal growth seminars. Lisa is well versed with entrepreneurial work. She is a couple of years younger than me.

Lisa and her boss have been building an organization in promoting Thought Leadership here in Vancouver. This is what sparked my attention and I wanted to know all about how, what and why she was doing it and to see if there is anyway I can help in their business.

To my dismay Lisa was telling me that the business did not work out. How can this be?

Thought Leadership is very popular because of the people that contribute to the growth of society. They evoke us to think, challenge assumptions, and they question the status quo.

So why did the business fail? The saddest part about why it failed was not the failure itself but actually how Lisa has been manipulated by her boss to think that Vancouver was not the right audience and that it wasn't the right timing for this business.

Aside from what she told me, getting thought leaders here requires a great deal of funding and bigger venues, which is true, she also explained to me how this can become a very successful business.

Implementing the right marketing strategy, starting early in promoting the events. Getting third party assistance in helping with venues, possibly finding cheaper venues and paying attention to the thought leaders that are going to be in the area at that same time when they are working on something else.

Incentivizing thought leaders, and also travelling abroad and conducting interviews, hosting webinars and online crash courses with thought leaders.

For those of you who do not understand who thought leaders are here are some examples; Authors, presidents, teachers to name a few.

Through this professional dialogue I realized that the business has so much potential. I couldn't help but notice that her boss was mentioned over and over again. This is when I thought about diminishers and amplifiers.

Unfortunately, amplifiers cannot break through to a diminisher. The diminisher will have to let go of their belief system to become an amplifier themselves.

The business didn't fail because of the market, time or audience, although these are crucial elements in a business. The business didn't fail because of the lack of ambition and talent from Lisa, whose role was administration and shortly after turned into marketing strategist, head of sales, organization and human resources.

The business failed because of a diminisher, because this business needs the support of more than one person to thrive. Lisa's boss did not listen, did not care, and was selfish and egotistic. Okay I may be harsh here. Sometime the truth hurts.

Lisa's boss discouraged the spread of ideas, she put down any insight Lisa had and instead of instilling ownership and accountability in Lisa, her boss took full control and did not understand how to react to the market when Lisa had most of the knowledge.

Yes Lisa's boss came up with the business idea, but she had the top down leadership approach, "the boss knows it all."

Liz Wiseman and Greg McKeown explain it best in their thought provoking book Multipliers: How the best leaders make everyone smarter.

"Hold people accountable to execution not the outcome, this will encourage people to try and fail.....It isn't how intelligent your team members are, it's how much of that intelligence you can draw out and use."

So how can a diminisher become an amplifier. This is not an over night process, and it is harder to do without the help of others. Most times if you are a diminisher you will not recognize that you are and you will be in denial. Remember what you think is right, right?

First step is to acknowledge that you do not care for other people to grow around you. Second is to change your mindset and to become a facilitator instead of a dictator. You can simply begin by observing and recognizing the natural talent that other people have. Once you recognize this, facilitate and challenge them to get outside their comfort zone by asking them the hard questions.

"Ask more, tell less."

Amplifiers continue to be great leaders, and help other people become amplifiers as well.

Thank you for reading this longer than usual post, I feel we covered a great deal. Drop me a comment or an email if you have something more to add to this post. To be continued....

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Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Do this first, then take action.

First and foremost, help others help themselves. The money will always follow. When people do not see immediate value and cannot visualize the results, most times they do not start. For me I start with why, that is what carry's me to act, you should too.

Of course making money is important, however if that is what your primary focus is you will not reach your full potential. Everyone you deal with is a person, I know how obvious right. The highlight is that people have emotions, people have beliefs and people have needs.

The questions remains, what are you doing for those people? Taking money from them is thinking about yourself, so how are you different than your competitors? What value do you bring to them?

What I said in my first paragraph relates both to the end user and the producer. If the person who wants to start a business cannot see the results that it will potentially bring, finding that motivation to begin the project/business is tougher than nails. Why would you start? You have no purpose.

Same goes for the end user, if they cannot see or understand why they need your product, and how it will bring value, they will not buy from you. Your job as the producer is to paint your customer what it would look and FEEL like to buy what you are selling.

I capitalized feel because emotions are a little bit more powerful than the perception. Why is that? Feelings help us connect on a deeper level. So what I am about to tell you next you need to understand that without feelings and just simply visualizing the effect simply will not be the same and neither will the end result.

The most successful men and women visualize to get what they want. I urge you to do the same. So what is visualizing? Visualizing is when you look into the future, and feel what it would be like to have what you want to have. It creates this momentum for you to do and act on things that would help you achieve that result.

Visualizing when done right burns inside you and helps you move forward. Does this mean that there will not be any obstacles in the way? Does this mean all you have to do is visualize and you will get what you want a hundred percent of the time? No.

Guang Yue an exercise psychologist has proven through research that mental imagery is so powerful it can produce half the amount of the result you are looking to achieve without actually moving your body. He compared two groups of people, one group that went to the gym and the other that did the work out in their head. The group that went to the gym received results of about 30% muscle increase and the group that did the workouts in their head the results came in at 13.5% increase.

Visualizing helps you understand what you are doing for and why you are doing it. The how is up to the actions you decide to take. As Albert Einstein neatly put it "true intelligence is not knowledge it is imagination."

Napoleon Hill in his timeless classic Think and Grown Rich said this "Man's only limitations, WITHIN REASON, lies in his development and use of his imagination." and continues "Wishing will not bring riches. But desiring riches with a state of mind that becomes an obsession, then planning definite ways and means to acquire riches, and backing those plans with persistence which does not recognize failure, will bring riches."

What is interesting to note about Napoleon Hill's work is that upon interviewing 500 of the most successful men and women he does not once mention money in his book.

So does it stop here after you visualize you go back to doing what you were doing? If you truly believed what it is you visualized, then no. You would take action that aligns with what it is you truly want, what you visualized.

A self-made millionaire and author Steve Siebold writes, "Being rich isn't a privilege. Being rich is a right. If you create massive value for others, you have the right to be as rich as you want."

If your focus is on the small wins of profiteering on each unit and there is no purpose or why behind it, you will lose, your business will fail. The good news is that behind every business and everything you do in your life there is a why. It is understanding what that why is that will propel you beyond what you are doing now.

Simon Sinek was right, the best companies are the ones who have figured out there why. He authored a great book Start With Why and has a website with the same name. On his website you will find that his team will work with you to articulate your why.

So how has visualizing worked for me? Well I visualized that I would become a consultant to large iconic brands and making a certain amount of cash flow. Yes, it is good to be precise with what you want. The infamous story about Jim Carey and his 10M dollar cheque in which he visualized came to him months before he anticipated it with his hit Dumb and Dumber.

Everything that I have been doing has been bringing me forth to that stage of consulting. Again it isn't just about me, it is much more than that. It is about me helping others, bringing "massive value" forth.

I don't want to say that after you visualize something and you achieve it that it ends there, because when one road ends, it will lead you on another path as corny as that sounds it is true. No we cannot see into the future or predict it, however we can visualize and feel what it is going to look like.

This will lead into the next post because after you understand what it means to visualize I want to tell you how it is you bring "massive value" to others.

You may have heard me repeat some of the stuff previously, it is just that important I feel I need to mention it over and over again.

Believe me am I at the point of where I think I am successful? No, but I am prepared for the obstacles that are to come my way, and to push through those obstacles and to make them my way.

Lastly do what works for you, just because this technique has worked for powerful figures and successful individuals this just might not be the thing for you. However, if you notice that what you are doing now is not working then why continue to do it?

"Double down on what works."

Thank you for reading this post. To be continued....

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Tuesday, 28 June 2016

What does a healthy work-life balance look like?

I have been noticing in the past year an emphasis on Work-Life Balance. Could it be because I am paying more attention to this? Yes, can it also be because of it's relevance to keeping everything in moderation? Yes.

Before we get into this topic I just want to say that things that are relevant to what you are doing and looking for in life will seem to pop up everywhere, yes we have covered this in one of my previous posts, but I did fail to mention that relevance matters.

Okay, so what is work-life balance? Can each person have their own interpretation of what work-life balance is? Certainly, but that doesn't answer the first question. Let's dive into it.

Work-life balance is a measuring tool, a way to be mindful of your daily activities. The purpose is to identify if you are happy more often than not. Each one of us has their own version of what it means to be happy, as I have mentioned above, and each one of us translates what this balance looks like.

For myself, work-life balance looks like this; Spend time with my girlfriend some of the time everyday, work most of the time everyday (communicate with clients, partners, work on projects, etc.), leave time for friends and family for at least a day or two per week, and keep in touch with friends daily. Volunteer at least once or twice a month, read daily, eat healthy and exercise daily.

This is the perfect balance for me, do I get to do this everyday exactly how I want to? No, I do however, do this most days and that's what keeps me sane, this is what makes me the person I am today.

Does this make me a workaholic? Do I need to attend workaholics anonymous? No. Let me tell you why, and remember my version of work-life balance is different than yours.

Work makes me happy, work makes me feel that I have a purpose in which I am put on this earth for. Work gives me energy for everything else that I am doing. Of course I go through times dreading moving onto the next stage or having to solve problems in my businesses. However, when this happens I think more in terms of the grander vision. What would my business look like if I moved forward?

The more meaningful my work is the more I enjoy it. Yes, there are some aspects of work that will be monotonous.

I was talking to a friend of mine about work-life balance and she seems to believe everything should be divided into equal distribution like the spokes in a wheel on a bike. Everything should be configured into a pie chart and it needs to even itself out.

I thought to myself when I first reviewed this chart, sure this makes sense. Why not have my activities evenly proportioned?

Upon closer review and testing this method I realized very quickly how much less happy this made me, even more so than before I tested this theory. How can this be?

Well as I have mentioned above, most times what works for me will not work for you. For my friend having her daily activities evenly divided makes sense to her, and makes her life more enjoyable. However, if I am not spending time doing more work I am less happy.

I need to work. Plain and simple. It is the life blood of my mechanism, it is the source of my energy.

This theory that everything needs to be balanced is truly up to you to decide what that means. No it does not mean that you have to work 50% of the time and function the rest of your life 50% of the time. You might work 100% of the time and find that you are completely happy in your life.

Let's stop here for one second and examine what it means to be happy, addicted, and what exactly fuels your body. Is it the hormone chemicals in your body? Is it the ego? Is it all of the above or none?

Being happy should not mean that you get a surge or a rush of excitement really quickly and then have it dissipate. Instead it should be a gradual level that continuously goes up and down that does not alter any major changes in your body.

Now lets be careful here and understand that too much of anything can cause problems in other areas of your life. "Your life and body is like an eco-system it is a host of other organisms that all function together, in unison." Like a well oiled machine, when all the parts work well the machine runs at an optimal level.

Some of you may think well what is wrong with getting a rush of excitement? Nothing is wrong with this, but if this is the only thing that energizes you, then you need to rethink what you are doing, most importantly, why you are doing it.

Let's take a look at what the experts have to say;

Psychologist Robert Brooks: " Ask yourself: In what other ways am I bringing greater enjoyment into my life?" Brooks says. "Focus your time and attention on things you can control."

Coach, consultant and trainer at Radiant Organizing, Sara Caputo "I guess for me work-life balance means that I am taking care of myself and taking the time for me that I need to feel grounded and supported without guilt and without hesitation. I know that when I do this, I show up better in all areas of my life.”

Author Keith Ferrazzi explains to us in his most popular work Never Eat Alone "work-life balance is not an equation it is a mindset that cannot be bough or sold. Joy brings you balance, if your work brings you joy then in turn it will bring you balance."

As you can clearly see that work-life balance is different for everyone but the most important aspect is the relationship you have with yourself and the people in your life. If EVERYONE is happy most of the time, your "balance" is in place.

Do not worry I have not left one of the more important aspects of this balance, sleep. We have covered this topic already and we know how important sleep is. Let me note here that without incorporating good sleep into your "balance" you will not be functioning well in any areas of your life, that's how important sleep is!

I have also thought about balance more in which you should experience something uncomfortable followed by something comfortable and this goes in a constant revolution.

My career is a lifestyle. My work is my life and vise versa. Many of yours may think so too, and yes you can turn your 9-5 job into a lifestyle, it is how you perceive and then behave accordingly.

What does your work-life balance look like? Ask yourself, are you happy most of the time, are the people in your life satisfied or constantly complaining about your work-life habits? Drop me an email, I would love to hear from you.

Thank you for reading this post. To be continued....

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Monday, 27 June 2016

How does one experience lead to another?

Find those opportunities

One thing leads to another. What is more true is that when you are working on something relevant you stumble onto something else related that will be better than what you started with.

One book leads to another, one platform leads to another, one friend leads to another, one comment leads to another, one investment leads to another, one project leads to another. Okay I think you get the point.

When does it all end? It ends when you stop looking for opportunities. When you are close minded and when you think you know everything.

So then why stop? It only stops when you decide it stops. There are plenty of books, investments, people and projects out there.

Have you ever considered how you got to where you are now, and the events that led to you getting there? If one or two things have been different you would not be where you stand today. So how did this grand sequence of events begin in the first place? And why did you make theses choices?

One year ago I decided to attend network events, if I did not attend one specific network event I would not have founded this specific philanthropy group, Givers Group. What led to this creation?

At the network event I shared something in common with the host, we both had a passion to help others. We then scheduled a coffee which I felt I needed to go to.

Sometimes the strangest things happen if you listen to yourself. When you give your inner gut feeling a chance.

When we met for a coffee he then invited me to a Gala that was to raise money for a charity organization. I have never been to a Gala before, and if it wasn't for the support and encouragement from my girlfriend and my friends I would have not attended that gala and I believe our friendship would have receded.

We then scheduled another coffee after the gala and decided that both of us are after the same dream. This is when the Givers Group was created.

Partners are great at keeping each other accountable and challenging each other to grow beyond your comfort zone.

"I have a tougher time letting someone else down than myself."

I feel I can always make an excuse and say I'll do it tomorrow. Does this make me lazy?

The events didn't end here. We scheduled a think tank group to come in and help us narrow our focus down to who exactly we wanted to help and where. If you read my Previous post you would understand the direction, we took.

We have now a project that we are working on with the Children's Wish Foundation. How did we land on this project?

Well after that sequence of events described above, fast forward, we looked for opportunities here in Vancouver B.C. We each volunteered for other charity's until we found that one of those charity's we can hone in and help further.

Through deliberate effort we decided that this project is a great fit for our philanthropy group.

Everything is a series of events that leads one thing to another.

Sure I could have probably done something different with my time or with someone else and created another group and it could have been just as good. Here comes the most important part of this post that you need to pay attention too.

Never say "I should have done that different for my outcome to be different." Get that word "Should" out of your vocabulary.

I still do this all the time and the only thing "should" does is disappoint me. I lose sight of the gift of which I have, and relish at the fact that things could be "different". Than I ask my self could it have been better?

This is a message to myself. How can I go through life living in a fantasy world when the present is much more enjoyable?

How can I stop saying "should"? It is simple yet a forgotten principle,

"Live in the present and be mindful."

I want to give you more examples of how things lead to other things, so let me do a couple of quick examples before I lose your attention.

If I did not go to the particular high school I went to I would not have met the various friends of whom I have partnered up with and have started businesses with.

A friend of mine introduced me to his friend. I then became good friends with his friend. Attending this new friend's birthday party, I met a person who I now have a relationship with of which is an indirect mentorship to me.

Basically I can go on and on about each event in my life that has led me to where I am today. What I am asking you is to recognize the events that transpired in your life, how they shaped you, and what actions are you going to take to create new opportunities for yourself?

How will you put yourself forth into that uncomfortable stage of growth? Will you attend an event that you normally would not? Would you ask to be connected to someone you do not know? Will you start a conversation with a stranger at a coffee shop?

"Opportunities will not come to you if you do not go out and seek them."

Thank you for reading this post, you can always connect with me and you never know where that can lead you to. To be continued....

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Saturday, 25 June 2016

The time I almost drowned

Six years ago I took a trip with three of my friends to Cancun, if you are not familiar with this city, it is a popular Americanised city in Mexico. It was during spring break. It was hot, and ripe for a party atmosphere.

My mom taught me how to swim. She used to be a competitive swimmer and now proudly owns her own swimming club. I am blessed to have an entrepreneurial role model in my life, but this isn't what this post is about.

We arrived at out hotel, checked in, and got to our rooms. Of course on the flight over we were competing on who can drink the most. I came close to first place, not my proudest accomplishment.

It was a fun trip to say the least. Soon after we checked in we decided to walk down to the beach. By this point I think you know where I am going with this post.

So there we were the four of us, standing on the beach, over looking at the waves crashing into the sand. I haven't swum in the ocean which formed these massive waves since I left Israel at the age of 10.

I bravely decided to go into the water.

I then began swimming out further and further until I reached a point were I felt exhausted. Unfortunately for me this was turning out to be a disaster. Definitely the wrong time to be getting tired, and the drinks on the flight did not help me at this point.

I would be lying if I told you that I encountered a shark or that I had to be rescued from the water because I almost drowned, although it would make for a cool story, I do my best to keep my stories biographical.

Struggling to make it back to shore, I panicked. The more I fought to swim against what seemed like a giant wall of water, the further it sucked me out. I thought at this point I would need some help. Not wanting to let anyone down, my friends and myself. I then stopped.

I stopped fighting.

It felt like a miracle, I came closer and closer to shore the less effort I made to climb over the wall of water.

By the time I reached shore I was no were near where I started the journey. I looked over and seen my friends standing staring frantically out into the ocean. I thought to myself what is going on. Then I heard my best friend yelling out "My friend is in the water he needs help".

I seen all three of my friends standing on the beach and I thought to myself, is he talking about me. So I watched for a few minutes absorbing this dignified array. An attempt made to save me from what seemed to be a horror scene.

I felt a sense of caring, belonging. I felt proud to have someone so genuine and amiable.

I crept up behind my friends and asked if they were looking for me. The look of worry was diminishing and I could tell they truly felt that they might never see me again.

True friends.

There are two lessons in this post.

One, know who your true friends are, not by pulling some sort of stunt to see if they care about you, but by observing their actions and reactions every time you are with them.

Two, stop fighting a losing battle. Know when to quit. Spend your energy on something that will bring you results and growth instead of working on something that will waste your most precious resource, Time.

Look at your business or project right now and ask yourself is there a purpose behind what you are doing? Is it meaningful to you? and will it improve your life and the lives of other's?

Why we work by Barry Schwartz is a great read to distinguish between trivial and meaningful work.

Thank you for reading my story, I hope it brought value to you. To be continued....

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Friday, 24 June 2016

Why does approval from authority figueres make you vulnerable?

Why is it that we tend to seek approval from authoritative figures?

We care what other people think, we have established this, however we care more about what our superiors think. Why is this?

We constantly need to be reassured about our work, about our appearance about our actions and our decisions. Why?

Of course people who are doubtful about themselves and who are insecure will need more reassurance than people who are positive and confident about themselves, this is obvious. However, I know people who still seek approval from others who have exuberance and who are self confident.

Ego is the enemy as Ryan Holiday thoughtfully puts it. It is the ego that is seeking this encouragement and comfort to know that what we do and say is up to other people's standards. Up to other people's approval. Our enemy, the ego, needs to be constantly fed.

The way this happens is through relying and accepting on what other people think about us, by listening to them heedlessly, ignoring the consequences they may present for us.

It feels great when you do something and someone who is in a higher position than you acknowledges and appreciates it. We then appreciate what we have done or said even more so than we would have if we didn't receive that support. We gloat at the fact that we got acceptance from the authority figure.

"If my boss thinks we have done something good/right then it must be good/right."

What happened to believing in ourselves? Why do other people's opinions matter?

They matter because we need social proofing, we need to know that we are understood and that other people can relate to us and accept what we are doing. We yearn to know that what we have done works. Works? Who determines what works and what doesn't work?

How about setting an example? Setting the standard. Taking the risk by going first without giving it seconds thoughts about what other people may think or if other people will except you.

This is scary, this is the unknown, and the uncomfortable. Very few people like to put themselves in these awkward situations. Yet this is when breakthroughs occur.

We fear going into the unknown because it feels good to do something that other people approve, especially someone in a higher position than you.

When I go into a clothing store, and try something on. Truthfully I have no sense of fashion, so I seek the approval of my girlfriend's opinion, if I am with her, or my friend's opinion. If I am alone I ask the sales rep to give me their opinion.

Notice how you built trust with the sales rep. Usually after having a comfortable conversation with them you tend to let your guard down. When you try on an article of clothing you ask them if it looks good, naturally they will say yes.

Do sales rep's have a biased opinion? Unfortunately, I want to say, yes they do. To some of them it is just another sale, this is especially true when they believe in their product. Their is nothing wrong in believing your product works, just remember it "never" works for everybody.

When you acknowledge the sales rep, it then becomes that little voice inside your head, and it then changes your perception.

We skew what we see in the mirror when we try something on by seeing ourselves differently than we would have if we didn't have someone comment about it. We think this because we assume that the sales rep is an expert and we are not.

Have we been manipulated?

They "plant a seed" in us it then grows because we cultivate that seed by feeding our ego. We can call this the art of Persuasion. Something I will write a new post about. Let's keep going.

I am not asking you to disregard what the sales rep says, neither am I asking you to be an expert in every field. However, a simple "mindfulness" of what other people think or say about you should be a habit of yours.

Do you ever find yourself working on a project that the boss has assigned to you, then half way into the project you are unsure if you are doing it right? At this point you feel that you need to consult your boss about it.

The Multiplier, intelligent boss, will support and encourage you to make your own decision, they will challenge you instead of telling you what to do as Liz Wiseman and Greg McKeown tell us in their remarkable non-fiction book.

Ask yourself why do I need to have this approval? Why do I not feel confident in my decision?

Getting approval all the time, you will discount your aptitude and appear to your superiors as though you are incapable of handling the task. It is perfectly normal to fail. Embrace the failure, sounds easy I know, it is the hardest thing you could ever do.

Do not change your beliefs because someone else tells you something different that makes sense, and question everything that would make you seem less confident in your own capabilities.

There will be some nasty people out there that will make you feel small, unappreciative and will make you question your self-image and your skills. However, there are also people who empower you.

Is there anyone in between?

I feel I am getting a bit of track here.

I am scared.

I am scared that my writing isn't good enough, because I know that my writing needs editing. I am scared to face the courage of someone else's criticism head on. I am scared to take the leap, invest into my writing without having a clear precise end goal in mind. I am scared to ask for someone else's opinion on my work.

Even though it is there out for the public to see and judge. Hitting that publish button is easy. But sending someone the work and expecting to see what is worthy and what is not is a tough pill to swallow.

Even I need the approval of others, yet I am hiding from it. I am seeking comfort behind my keyboard and screen. Behind my ego, and what skill I think I have.

Thank you as always for getting to the bottom, will see you at the next post. To be continued....

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Wednesday, 22 June 2016

The sleeping economy

I have mentioned previously how important sleep is. I thought it would be a great topic to get into with you right now because in the last two days I have heard things that were interesting and I would like to share them.

Why do we sleep and why is sleep important?

We sleep each and every day. Having a good night sleep is so important not just for your health and your mental well being, but also for the next day. Your productivity suffers as well as your cognitive response and recollection when you do not get a good night's sleep.

So what is a good night sleep? It is when you give your body the proper amount of rest time. Okay so what does that mean? Well we each have a different level of how sleep affects us.

Some people can sleep for 10 hours and still do not feel well rested and others could sleep for 6 hours and feel fully energized and ready to go the next day. So how do we determine what is a good sleep. For starters become aware of your activity, the night before and the morning after your sleep.

Count the amount of hours you slept and notice your productivity during the day. You determine what is right for you by simply being conscious of how many hours are right for you.

I am a heavy sleeper so I can't speak for those who have interrupted sleep. But what I do know is that when your sleep is interrupted then your clock resets as to how many hours of sleep you get. This happens because there are different stages of sleep. Your body needs to pass through all the stages for it to fully recover, heal, and stay healthy.

When you are waking up your body needs to come back from the stages of sleep just like it went into them. So a blaring an alarm clock does not do you any good. Instead try sleeping with your blinds open (This is how I get up) and let the natural light wake you up gradually. Or set an alarm clock that slowly becomes louder so your body and mind is not jolted into this panic mode.

Okay, I am no sleep doctor, I do not hold any educational degrees pertaining sleep, neurosciences or psychology. You can find a ton of information online about sleep. But this is not why I wanted to share this topic with you in the first place. I didn't want to tell you how important sleep is because you should already know that by now.

"Sleep makes people calmer, more alert, less fearful - and just plain happier, or so I see around me and in me. I am sure that if this great nation were to concentrate on getting more sleep, we would be a happier, more confident people, and that by itself is a major achievement." Ben Stein

We are stuck in this cycle, we have a bad sleep, then we have a bad day, then we do it all over again.

So why am I writing about sleep? I thought it was fascinating to hear from two of my friends about how disconnected they were with the amount of sleep they were getting on a daily basis and how they felt about it.

They mentioned to me how well rested they were and how it was unusual for that to occur.

One of them is a hairdresser and the other is an entrepreneur like myself. The entrepreneur is my best friend and he told me that the reason why he was able to sleep so good was because he didn't have to worry about anything in the morning.

I asked him, "why don't you apply the same method every morning?" He laughed and said "are you kidding me? How will I get any work done?."

Let me emphasize here that you can still get your work done. The trick is to take the "worry" out of your morning ritual. In fact, he could probably be even more productive, not to say that he is not productive already, he is a very successful man, in my opinion.

My hairdresser also claims that if she feels well rested something is wrong. In this case she slept through her alarm clock because her phone died.

Why do we do this to ourselves? We sabotage the most important aspect of us growing and becoming an even better person. We age less, we think clearer, we are more alert, and we are full of energy when we feel well rested in the morning after getting enough sleep were we sleep through the various stages.

I have read studies that our brains can learn while we sleep, so for a while I used to put on audiobooks during my sleep. Did this help me personally? I can't say for sure. What I do know is that when I do not get at least 6 hours of rest I am much more groggier in the morning and I have a hard time during the day especially in the evening without feeling tired.

We do not all need the same amount of sleep, on the contrary some need more sleep than others. However, it is important we get the right amount of sleep.

"Sleep is the best meditation." Dalai Lama

Thank you for reading this post, did I make you sleepy reading this? To be continued....

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Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Let me tell you why expectations are unavoidable.

Why is it when we try something for the first time we set an expectation.

I was told by a therapist that setting expectations leads to less disappointments. This I find is true for the most part. However of course I question everything, I feel this is the only way you can truly comprehend something and in return grow from it.

What are expectations? Why does our perception change according to the expectations we set for ourselves and for others? Who decides the importance of the expectations? Why do expectations matter and why do we place value on them?

You wake up in the morning and you find yourself contemplating what to wear. Do you decided what to wear based on the expectations/standards you have set for yourself, or based on what other people expect you to wear? How do you know which plays a role in your decision making or do both factors matter? If so then why?

We expect to have a good job, good education, good life, good car, good girlfriend, good day. Why? Is it us who expect this or do others expect this from us?

When we have a bad haircut, bad movie experience, or a bad time at work we tend to take it out on the people around us, it affects our mood, and it will effect our decisions which we make in the future. Who considers these things bad? Is it what you expected before you went and experienced theses things that ultimately was the deciding factor for what is bad and what is good.

I have written about perception, and I have explained how someone else's observation of you can impact your decision making. So how does expectation fit in all of this?

Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, and what we do unfortunately is influenced not just by other people's expectations but also by our own.

When we experience something for the first time we set ourselves a standard as to what to expect from that experience for when we do it the second time. If our friend has experienced it before us and tells us what to expect we go into that experience with already a biased opinion.

We are biased creatures in nature. We hold strong accountability on experiences that we have not experienced yet. Do you see how bizarre this is?

We already know that everyone's experience is unique to themselves. If I read a book, I will find in that book lessons that I feel matter to me, and you might already know those lessons or overlook them because you find something else that matters to you.

Yet when we read a good review about a movie, or restaurant the standard is set. We judge the experience critically. As opposed to something that does not have a good review, our expectations are lowered and we are easier to please because if the experience super exceeds our expectations it would give us pleasure.

"Always under promise and over deliver"

A great read by mihaly csikszentmihalyi, Flow, he explains about the difference of pleasure and enjoyment. How the latter serves us and the former defeats us. We can find enjoyment in everything we do if we get into the state of flow. Knowing what you are doing at every moment, being focused and clear.

By being in the state of flow with what you are doing, expectations do not matter. We forget the everyday frustrations, and we lose the self consciousness, the ego, and what others think.

Do the review and rating systems for services and products kill the experience for the user? Hypothetically yes. However, it is an excellent marketing tool to attract more people to your business because people enjoy opulence, especially when it is affordable.

Communities are made up of people and they matter. People listen to people, people trust people, so much so that they will expect the same result that they got from their experience.

Going back to the therapist I mentioned at the beginning. What did she mean that expectations matter? Well not having set expectations means that you can disappoint the other person you are with if they expect something different than you. I can definitely see how that can be.

For example; if you are going to the beach with someone and you have an ulterior motive to meet someone else there, and the person you are going with is expecting to relax, then it would cause some friction between the two of you.

However, if that person is easy going and does not have any expectations then there would be no issue.

The message here is be both transparent and lose your self of entitlement, and your expectations. When you have zero expectations it is easier for you to relax and enjoy the outcome of the experience.

My friend and I decided to go do a float house here in Vancouver. My friend walked in with a bias opinion because his friend has just opened up a float house in Calgary. However I had no opinion at all. After the experience who do you think enjoyed it more? You guessed it, I found the experience really relaxing and I would definitely go back again.

Companies set a standard, for example Apple has the highest quality of Laptops and music devices, the Ipod. Now they are met with these standards by their clients. You see more complaints because peoples expectations are not met. Does this mean you should set a low standard for your business? Most certainly not.

When expectations are set you become responsible for your business, your word, and your actions.

At any moment in life you can convert to realism, which is not a belief system at all, but a way of looking at the world. It means every circumstance, every individual is different, and your task is to measure that difference, then take appropriate action. Your eyes are fixed on the world, not on yourself or your ego." Robert Greene and 50 cent.

Do you ever find yourself saying "you too" to someone who is ending a conversation with you expecting them to say to you "have a good day". We respond before we even hear what they say because of our expectations. Listen before you respond, don't assume or expect.

Our expectorations can act as safeguards for our lives, for example we know that the stove will be hot when we turn it on.

I suppose what bothers me the most is that we have all these expectations and they can be both good and bad for us, yet we tend to forget the most important expectation of all. Our expectation on meeting our goals. The ones who do this are the ones who win. They always keep an open mind and they are focus and clear about their intentions.

Thank you for reading this post, I hope it is what you expected. To be continued....

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Monday, 20 June 2016

What struggle do the rich and famous have?

Billionaire Life style.

What problems do the rich and famous people have that everyone else does not?

This is a question that me and my girlfriend were pondering over dinner. It fascinated me enough to want to dig deeper, bootstrap myself to searching and finding the answers from people who I consider successful (I will explain what I mean by "I consider successful" later in this post).

This topic comes at an interesting time in my life. Everything you do leads to something you don't know. Whether you read a book, meet someone, or experience an adventure. It will shape you into becoming something different then you were before.

What intrigues me about this topic is the fact that I don't have the insight to answer the question. I feel it holds an important value to know and share the answers. I don't know what that value is at the moment, but something tells me I will soon find out.

I have read and witnessed what makes people successful. How they become successful, and how can we follow in their footsteps.

This seems to be a concept that matters for the ordinary to becoming extraordinary. Before we continue I just want to say that you, yes you the reader, are extraordinary even if you don't think so. You have something to offer someone else and this world, a gift. Only you decide what that gift is.

What has worked for successful people may work for us too, but most times this isn't the case. What works for me will most likely not work for you, because we are all unique.

For example; I love waking up early taking a cold shower and getting to work. If you follow in my foot steps will it you become successful? Probably not. You could be a night owl and you do your best work at night. Stick to what works for you.

It does not hurt to try other methods, but find what works for you, don't force something that just doesn't work.

I feel we are getting a bit of topic here, so let's get back on track. Why hasn't anyone published a book, essay, or article about the troubles or pains successful people have that ordinary people do not?

There are common problems we all have; mental diseases, critical illnesses, other people, environmental, political, economical issues. What problems do the elite have that ordinary people do not? Well I would think on some the burden is much more extreme, then again I suppose it is how you deal with it per individual basis.

Ryan Holiday makes good assumptions in his book Ego Is The Enemy. "When you are at the top people are gunning for you, your ego is bolstered. Society imposes more obligation on the you. The more successful and powerful we are the more we think we need to protect our legacy, lineage, and influence. If we are not careful we will spend too much time trying to keep the world from displeasing or disrespecting us, thus becoming isolated."

What makes this topic unique is it will provide the reader with relatable, vulnerable and significant insight on our society as a whole. People who do have lots of money are also human, and have problems just like the rest of us, sometimes they are worse of. I would say it is per individual base.

I have written about how there is always someone else that has it worse than you do. Well just because someone is powerful, they have drawbacks too. We see less of that especially in the public figures because this is what they protect the most.

Although it is interesting to note that the ones who make themselves vulnerable are the ones we tend to like the most.

This topic I feel needs to be dissected further and research needs to be conducted through psychological, philosophical and scientific data which will be accumulated and later shared with you.

Knowing that everyone suffers, it is not to make people feel a sense of sorrow and disparity. Instead it is meant for the open minded individual who can see that we are all human, and that fame and fortune only separate us economically.

My girlfriend raised a good argument saying that people who are rich have an easier time solving problems. However, I feel this is a good way to prove that not all problems need money to be solved.

Who you may consider successful that particular person may not think so of themselves. How will I distinguish who would be a good candidate for this research?

The elite. People who share the spot light, who have a substantial amount of following. Those who are classified as the "upper class", or who have accomplished something that most people have not. It can be winning a medal, award, or building a multi million-dollar business.These people would be good candidates for this study. It can be winning a medal, award, or building a multi million-dollar business.

I want to get into the minds of the Elite, extract the vulnerabilities from them and share the valuable information with people who are interested in reading about it.

What about the people that are ultra rich, but are not in the spotlight, the ones who stay humble, who we do not know hear or know about, well they shall remain a mystery to us all.

Let the project commence. To be continued....

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Sunday, 19 June 2016

What do good partnerships have in common?

There is a cliché out there, "Don't do business with friends or family". I want to debunk that cliché and support it. I will give you some personal examples and my suggestions on how you can make it work.

Why are we often told not to do business with our friends or family?

I have been following Gary Vaynerchuk, I am not going to bore you with facts about who he is and what he does, you can click on his name and it will take you there if you are interested. The short story of it is he is a business man who took his family business from 3m to 60m in 5 years. His dad literally dragged him into the business.

He now owns a successful 100m media company called Vanyer Media with his brother A.J.

Gary and his brother work especially well together because of their different strengths that they bring to the business.

If you do not want to continue reading this post then that most important take way here is, it doesn't matter if the person you are in business with is your friend, family or a complete stranger (okay maybe not a stranger, if you do not know the person you are going into business with chances of its success are very meniscal). What matters are your character/values, and what you bring to the business.

Those two thing have to line up with your partner or partners. You do not want to be head butting in the business. This typically occurs when you have conflicting values and similar strengths.

Everyone should know what they are great at, where their strengths lie. Whatever you do, do not tell your partner what they are doing is wrong if you are not an expert on the subject or have the core strengths they do. Of course common sense prevails. What makes you shine will ultimately super exceed their common sense.

My most recent start up business, K.V. Business Solutions, I have partnered up with one of my best friends.  We have been friends for 15 years. After attending the same school, we went our separate ways. Yet we both ended up becoming entrepreneurs, something we did not anticipate in our teenage hood.

We support, encourage, and challenge each other by bringing different tools, and expert knowledge, to becoming a versatile venture company.

The mission is to give talented individuals a leap into entrepreneurship, accelerating their growth into becoming a sustainable competitive company in their industry.

So far I have been reinforcing that you should go into business with friends and family. Now let's look at it on the flip side of things so you can see that I do not hold a bias opinion.

I have witnessed friends becoming hostile towards each other, and family's estranged. This is both awkward and distressing. Especially when you know both sides well and are then put on the spot to make a hard choice. Knowing that both sides are right and wrong.

Trust, money, reputation, integrity is all confronted with disdain. This holds especially true when both partners bear exact strengths that clash because either one thinks they are smarter, better or have their way of solving a problem that the other partner disagrees with.

This doesn't happen all the time, but is more likely to become the 'Clash Of The Titans'.

So what are my suggestions to having the right fit as a partner? Do not exclude your family or friends because they could become your valuable asset as proven in this post. More importantly do not look for someone else to compliment your weakness, these people you can hire, instead look for someone else to complement your strengths.

So if one person is a genius with marketing, and you have a strength in accounting, or financial backing, you can blend the two and become an efficient conglomerate.

Look at the strengths of your partners and employees and double down on them. Leverage them to crush your competition if you are not in a super niche market, or a monopoly, which most of you reading this I assume you are not.

Go at the same pace. You will not do well if one partner is a sprinter and the other is a walker or at best a jogger. You need to be running the marathon at the same pace, being on the same page. Use transparency all the time; for one it builds an amazing culture and trust. There is no room for uncomfortable surprises.

Understand each other and what your goals are for the business and company. Visit this topic frequently since minds always evolve.

Business is about building relationships and it is also about, well, business. So don't forget that the hard questions will be asked, assumptions will be challenged and, tough decisions will have to be made. Treat a business as a profitable venture and not as a happy marry go round.

You are at war; your enemy is the competition. No need to make enemies within your organization. Although that is ultimately what the market and the competition aim to do. To break your partnership/company down psychologically.

"It is not so much about what you do, but who you do it with."

The relationship of your partner is unimpeded. What holds value is your partner's character, strengths, support, communication, and synergy. If you truly think about it, you have a head start with someone who you already know.

"You will go much further with an all star team then you would ever by yourself."
Thank you for taking the time to read this post. To be continued....

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Saturday, 18 June 2016

What is the reality of your perception?

What do you see in this picture? 

We tend to have a selective perception. We hear, see and think things that we choose to, or do we?

Our reality is of course our reality. We tend to see and hear things that only matter to us. We block/filter out all the noise and only find what is relevant to us. How does this happen and why?

As I have mentioned in my last post, we can only focus on one thing at a time, what we can pay attention to is limited to our perception.

After you make purchase of a particular car model or scooter, you tend to notice more of the same car or scooter driven by other people. This is because we choose to pay attention to something that is familiar and relatable to us.

Were people not driving that particular car model or scooter prior to your purchase? It was always there, you had no reason to notice it. Our reasoning dictates our perception.

Let me give you another example, look back at my post and count how many times I wrote perception. What was the number that you got? Was it 4? Okay you got that right, so how many times did I write scooter? You were not looking for scooter when I asked you to count the number of times I wrote perception so how would you know without having to look back again?

Do you see where I am going with this?

The best sales men and influencer's prime us to notice things that they want us to notice.

Zig Ziglar once said that his car sales man used this tactic on him to buy a brand new car and the way he did this was to prime him while he was at the dealership. He said to him, "I bet you will be dreaming about this beauty when you will be in bed tonight" Zig called back the next day and asked the car to be delivered to his house.

So is this post about priming or perception? Well we can say both.

Priming can be deceptive, however perception is what we choose, almost.

I have recently read an amazing book and I will be adding a few topics to my blog posts relating to this book. The book is written by someone who I aspire to, Ryan Holiday, the name of the book is "Ego Is The Enemy".

The reason why I mention this particular book is because we constantly battle our own ego most times without even realizing it, I know I do, how does this tie into perception/priming? Well our ego can elude us to filtering what is truly right there in front of us. It will make our mind up before we even see, hear or taste anything.

It distracts us from perceiving the truth. Well what is truth and what is reality?

We all wear a lens. What I see, you see differently. I don't actually mean if we are both looking at a cow we see a cow, I mean by looking at a cow I see it as a milk and meat producing gentle beast, and you may see it as a giant grass eating animal.

Our definitions are unique to our beliefs and thoughts. Our ego guides us and influences our perception of the reality, the truth, of what we believe it is or what it can be. Ego is the enemy. Ego is our deception. Even now as I am writing this I want this to be the best post, am I focused on the writing of the post or is my ego guiding me for the end result?

This quote from the book is why I wanted to mention this book, "When one becomes a student, the teacher will appear". When you are ready to see something, you will see it. When you are looking for something you will find it.

Why do we get fooled into believing that we see Jesus on a piece of toast, or the Virgin Marry on a glare in the window outside the church? One reason is because we get primed by authorities, and then follow others (Social proofing). Another reason is because we choose to see this.

We are amazing at pattern selection, watch this awesome video to understand what I mean when I say that, Why people believe in weird things.

In Mindless Eating, Brian Wansink pulls up great studies that have shown that our eyes deceive our stomach. When we are eating chicken wings and we see the left over bones we will stop eating more but when we do not see how much we ate, we will tend to eat more.

Same is true for the way menu items are written, if they sound good when we read them they will appeal to us more, as opposed to making them sound gross and real. Would you rather have deep fried squid or calamari?

Are you an idealist or a realist?

Neither of these is wrong or right, it is what you make of it that makes it so.

How do you perceive your business or job? Is it something you hate and dread? Is it a challenge? Or is it a calling?

"2 brick layers were asked to describe their work, one said he was there from 9-5 laying bricks, the other said he was building a house for god."

We all have opportunities and struggles; it is how you perceive them that matter most. Your shitty job or business can be someone else's calling. It can be your calling if you make it so. If you change/adjust your perception.

I have more to say about perception because it is such a fascinating topic, Why don't we perceive the value that we have? How can we change our perception? Can we control when we get primed? How do others perceive us? Why?

But I feel you will consider that I am monopolizing your valuable time. How did you conceive this post? I suppose that's my ego wanting to find out. Drop a comment or a like at the bottom.

As always you can find me at and on all the social platforms.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post on perception. To be continued....

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Wednesday, 15 June 2016

How doing this for 5 minutes can make the rest of your day better

On March 21st I have picked up a habit of which I have stopped in January of this year. I thank my friend on Facebook whom I have met at a personal development seminar.

The habit of expressing gratitude daily has improved my outlook on life and has increased my mood.

The appreciation we have for each other and for the things we have is important to realize. We carry with us a gift, everyday we become more in tune and self aware of our surroundings we are able to take control of our reactions.

"As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter the words, but to live by them." John F. Kennedy.

Being grateful is the first step, writing it down is the second, acting and showing our gratitude is the ultimate step.

I have written about why you should be grateful and that there are others who have it much worse then you. Here I want to tell you how you can be grateful and what I do everyday to show my appreciation.

Every morning I wake up I go to my office desk pull out my journal and write down 3-5 things that I am grateful for. I do not repeat them from the day before. By doing this it makes me think deeper about what I am grateful for and why.

This begins my day on a positive note. I write down things as small as enjoying the sunshine to bigger things such as closing a sale or spending time with my nephews. Other examples are learning to do a task, being patient with my partner, getting my bills sorted, contributing to a good cause, taking care of my loved ones...

Spending 5 minutes to be appreciative is something we tend to be too busy for. How is this possible? Have you sat down and really thought about what you are grateful for?

The things that work for me may not work for you. This I consider is universal. You cannot have a good thought and a bad thought at the same time, neither can you have a good thought and feel bad at the same time. Studies have proven this. You can try it out for yourself right now.

Think of something that you are grateful for; how does that make you feel? Do you feel depressed, dreadful, and stressed? Let me answer this for you, NO.

Barbara L. Frederickson on the American Phycologist has tested the impact of positive thinking and has concluded that positive thinking can broaden your possibilities and open your mind up to more options. Your mental health flourishes, reducing stress and anxiety.

Dr. Emmons and Dr. McCullough, two phycologists, have completed studies which prove that people who wrote daily things they were grateful for were more optimistic about their lives, exercised more and had fewer visits to the physicians as opposed to those that were given the task to write down the things that irritated or displeased them.

How can thinking positively and grateful be good for business? The question instead should be, how can it not?

I am a realist; I am human just like you. I cannot be happy and grateful all the time. Let's face it, life is a constant challenge. It will bring your mood up and down inevitably. But predictably you can begin your day set of in a better, healthier mood, by spending 2-5 minutes thinking about the things that you appreciate and are grateful for.

Will you feel happy for the rest of the day? Probably not. It can however increase the chances of you feeling better, or lessen your negative reaction when something shitty happens.

Why not end your day with gratitude? That is a really good way to go to bed as well. There are also studies shown that how you go to bed will affect your night's sleep. Your sleep in turn will affect you next day's productivity. It is a cycle, one that Arianna Huffington talks about in her Sleep Revolution non fiction book and which I feel requires a full dedicated post for.

Thank you for reading this post, you see I am always grateful for not only writing the posts but also for you coming all the way to the bottom to read this part. I hope you didn't skip the insightful middle part. To be continued....

You can find this on my website as well

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What do customers and people in sales need to know?

Lately I have been searching for a new bike, okay lets not get this confused, what I mean is a new bicycle. I love riding, especially in the city.

I never thought I would ride my bike as much as I have since I moved into Vancouver. It has become my main form of transportation. Not only do I get great exercise but I avoid all the traffic jams and I contribute less to the excessive pollution that our cars pump into the atmosphere.

This is not a post about how you should stop driving your car and ride your bike to be environmentally friendly. In this post I want to get inside what goes on of the purchase of the bike itself, of course another business post. Why I am purchasing a new bike, what have I learned and the how to's.

The process turns out to be more complicated then I had anticipated. I love to compare the competitors pricing, customer service (being in the service industry myself), quality, branding, and knowledge.

Are all sales people, or in this case floor sales men (surprisingly there is not many women selling bikes from what I have noticed), bike enthusiasts? I would have to say yes. All the stores I have entered I was greeted with a warm smile and the smile only grew larger as the sales men began explaining the intricacy of their product.

Just to briefly explain, there are different type of sales people. The floor sales greet the customer when they walk into a store. They provide the expert knowledge about the product that they sell. There are also telemarketers, door-door, B2B (business to business) and many more.

The mass of knowledge the sales men have is obtained from their personal experience of owning bikes. Are the bike sales men biased? I would also have to say yes on this one. Now you may not agree fully with me when I say we are all biased one way or another, but it is true.

We are biased because of our beliefs. What has worked for us we think should work for other's. There are very few people who can pass no judgement and keep an open mind on other people's opinion if it strongly disagrees with theirs.

Why do I think that the sales men are bias? Not because they are wanting to sell some of the more expensive product in the store, okay maybe that has something to do with it. Yes, they work on commission so if they sold a higher price point product they would ultimately get a larger reward. You see how this is selfish thinking.

Also because when you lean towards a bike that is not one which they recommended they would tell you all the disadvantages about the bicycle of which you are leaning more towards.

"Always think about the customer first, business second, yourself last." The best sales men are the ones who listen to the customer and who react appropriately to the customer's needs.

They identify your pain point, in this case needing a bike for transportation. They understand the factors you are looking at, cost versus quality of the bicycle. They act honest, empathetic, persistent and optimistic, and they create a solution for you by making you think about your problem differently.

What do I mean by my last statement? Let me give you an example. When I come into the store and I explain what I am want and what my pain is (most times the customer doesn't even know what their pain is, if you are a sales person reading this I will explain in more detail another time), because I am not an expert on bikes, the sales men are able to shed some light the pains I will have with the type of bicycle that I choose.

This builds trust and credibility.

The sales men are people and the clients are people too. We need to understand that humility plays a major role in the relationship building. Understanding that and challenging the customers pain by revealing something that the customer wouldn't have originally thought of.

The reason why I am looking for a bicycle is it turns out someone else needed my bicycle more than I did, that's a nice way of saying it.

The message is for the sales man and the customer. Neither of them is right at the same time they are both right.

To the sales man one must build trust with the customer by being vulnerable, having the expert knowledge, and applying it considerably. Making it about helping the customer, not just making a sale. Most importantly being specific about the solution to the problem.

Instead of asking the customer what the problem is, identify a problem that is more likely to occur and explain the repeatable solution that you offer. Remember you are the expert.

To the customer, understand your pain, do your research, and be direct with the sales man to your must-haves.

Thank you for reading this post. To be continued....

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Tuesday, 14 June 2016

When and how to give someone advice

There is nothing more rewarding then giving someone useful practical advice. It creates a sense of euphoria. What I find interesting is that there is a specific time for when to give advice and that men and women react differently when receiving advice.

Walking up to someone and giving them advice of which you think may help them can come off quite rude, egotistical, and arrogant. How can this be?

Your advice only matters when the person is ready to receive it. The seeker will find you when they are ready.

I recently met with a mentor of mine and I had asked him to teach me everything he knew about everything he knew. Yes, very broad, so he asked me to ask him specific questions about what I want to know since our time was limited.

I asked him how can I get more sales leads for my steam cleaning company. He gave me advice of which was practical and very useful. He also recommended to read two specific books about the subject.

After attaining his pragmatic advice and reading the books about the subject, I was asked by a client of mine to give him my 'professional opinion' on a very similar topic. I felt a sense of accomplishment after reiterating what I have heard and read. It strengthened my understanding and I was also able to give my client my opinion on what his next step should be.

The consultation couldn't have come at a better time. I will give you a snippet of the advice since I love to give content to my readers.

"Sales people are not prospectors. You cannot expect them to do the same job. You will exhaust them, you need to let your sales people be the closers, and your prospectors the lead hunters. For your company's growth it is necessary to...."

My advice to you is be ready anytime, because you never know when you will be asked for your 'professional opinion'. When you do get asked, talk in their language. No I don't mean speak in a foreign language. What I mean is explain your advice to them in terms that they can grasp it.

If they do not understand the jargon, then tell it to them in simple terms. Using metaphors always helps, especially when you compare things that are universally understood. I do this in my posts sometimes to give you a better understanding of what I am talking about.

On a side note I was told by one of the readers that they love reading my posts. I was pleasantly surprised because of the person I heard this from, and explained to them that I like to keep things as simple as possible so that everyone reading can understand my message in the post. He said that's exactly what he enjoyed about my posts.

Everything that I know, you can find, research, read and learn. It is no secret. What professionals do is they save time for people who need the solutions right away.

They facilitate in taking down barriers/pains, for people who are striving to achieve an end task, whether it is a professional, business, relationship or a life goal.

Don't be afraid to ask when you need to, it does not make you look stupid. Quite the opposite, it makes you look curious, ready and willing to learn. Nobody knows everything. Asking someone for advice will strengthen your relationship with that person.

Some great places where I seek advice is from online publications from various successful entrepreneurs such as Gary Vaynerchuk, Simon Sinek, Ryan Holiday, Marc Cuban, Tim Ferris, Tal Gur, also books are a primary source for absolutely great content. Ted Talks, mentors, friends, enemies, parents, clients, partners.

Do you ever find that you are disinterested when someone tells you something that you already know? I do, however it is best to show that you are interested because what that person is doing is learning by teaching. Give them the benefit for doing so.

So how are men so different from women when it comes to receiving advice?

Women want to be heard and Men want to problem solve.

Giving a woman advice about something without her "Directly" asking for it is exactly what I said in the second paragraph of this post, it rubs of the wrong way. However a man would not see it completely this way, although you may bruise the ego of the man, most times the man will accept the advice and will either act or do nothing about it.

Women want you to listen to them, they do not care to solve the problem. Yes naturally us men hear a problem and our first reaction is to solve it because that is how we are hard wired, where there is a problem there must be a solution.

Next time a woman is telling you something that you think will need to be fixed, just listen, acknowledge, and be there for her without saying what she should do. Encourage her to talk freely with you saying "I understand how that would feel, it must be awful".

I notice with myself that useful advice surfaces much after someone has asked for it. It bothers me that I couldn't give them the advice right there and then when they were asking for it. Does this ever happen to you?

Final thoughts on advice giving is to be aware of who you are giving advice to, let that individual come to you directly. Your advice matters only when someone is ready for it. Not sooner or later.

What is the best piece of advice you have received? Did it come at a good time?

Thank you for reading this post as always, if there is anyway I can help you with anything do not hesitate to contact me. I am easy to find. To be continued....

I would like to add that who you get advice from matters. If for example that person has a failing business, or does not have any expertise in the line of work he/she is giving you advice on, then approach it with caution. You should always do your own research and do not just put your full trust in someone because they may seem like they know what their talking about.
Back the advice up with proven facts.

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