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Showing posts from July, 2009

How am I Different?

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I spend hours talking to my clients about one of the basics of Marketing: Differentiating. I ask how they are different than other people who seem to be doing the same stuff.

15 years ago when I started working as a consultant, I really didn't think very much about that for myself. My main focus at that time was setting up financial systems and processes for very small companies and I didn't have much competition in my market.

Now, as a business mentor I have plenty of competition. I started this blog as a way for you to all get to know me. I ramped up my social media marketing and published articles elsewhere as well. In all this flurry of activity, I've been following many other folks who market themselves under this or a similar label. As I've ready their advice and watched their approach, it's been hard for me to pin down exactly what it is about me that's different. I was, like my clients, in that moment, unable to see the forest for the trees.

When posting …

Tides

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Is it just a tidal change that will reverse itself naturally or a drought on the way?

Yeah, I get that we're in a recession. But your business will have it's own tides in addition to the tides of the greater marketplace. How do you tell your own from the ocean's tides? To some extent you can't. That is, if you haven't been keeping really clear records of your sales income from previous periods.

Most likely you may know exactly what you're sold in the past, but to whom and why are two more questions you may be less clear on. When you wrote your business plan you were asked to project income in different market sectors and income in different price points. Then you projected that further down the line for 3 or more years. Have you gone back and looks at those budget vs actual numbers?

When there's a crisis afoot in business, folks can be very quick to make changes. After all, agility and flexibility is what it's all about. But, if you don't go back and t…

Creative Business

Next Monday, July 20th, I'll be doing a tele interview for the blog Woman on Quilts at 5pm PDT. The focus will be creating and business. Call in and have the opportunity to ask questions on the many different facets of this topic!

Not Your Mother's Career Counselor

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www.imageabstraction.com
When, if ever did you go to your first Career Counselor? After High School? During a mid-life crisis? After college? Chances are, there has been someone along the way with some opinions about what your life's work should be. They might have given you tests or asked questions and in the end, they were looking for a box to put you and your skill set into.

"Life's Work" is now an outdated concept for many of us. There will be many times we change what we do, how we do it and who we do it for. My last post was about the lifestyle connected to different professions. That's one example of some of the points that don't get covered in some career counseling.

I like to start all my new folks out with this question: What do you want your perfect day to look and feel like?

It's a kind of reverse engineering. Instead of asking a series of questions about what you're good at, I'd rather know what you'd like to do, day to day. Because w…

Your Business Lifestyle

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www.imageabstraction.com

It's not unusual that I meet someone who starts a business in an industry that's new to them. For example, someone who has been in social work but has always dreampt of having a little gift shop. Six months down the line I hear them say, "But I didn't really understand how I'd never have weekends to myself!".

Every industry has it's own particular lifestyle. It's an important thing to factor in when you're considering starting your own venture. There are decisions you can make about the structure of your business and the culture you can create and then there are things that are inherent to that industry. A great example is a restaurant. Unless you're running a breakfast and lunch cafe, chances are you'll be working nights. The most important time to be in your restaurant will be the nights. It's a complete lifestyle. That may not go over well with your family.

"If I knew then what I know now..."

Do a litt…