Monday, September 17, 2007

Learning from Reading - BOOKSTORE

Learning from reading has been a theme in the last few messages. Today I am launching an Amazon Bookstore to help you find books that will help you reach your goals.

I hope you will post comments about the books and tell us what you are reading.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Learning From Others

In addition to learning from reading, I learn from talking to other people. The trick is finding people who know what I need to learn when I need the information. Many people call this "Just in time" learning or information. The internet brings a lot of information, and it is such an interactive media that it affords real dialogue.

When I have face-to-face meetings and conversations, my learning is faster because I can ask questions and interact on more levels. I have some writing projects in process. As the projects progress, I needed information faster than I have been able to acquire it through reading. So I joined a local publishers group. I have learned more in a few meetings of the St. Louis Publisher's Association than I read in the past year. They even helped me decide which books to read next.

Remember to look for a variety of ways to learn. When you set a goal for yourself, see if you can identify any local and/or online groups or communities that can help you accelerate your learning. Group coaching can be effective for similar reasons. Consider gathering a group of people to form around meeting goals. The group can have common goals, or the group can help the members achieve individual goals.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Blogging Much?

How much BLOGGING is enough?

Everything has a learning curve. I always start learning by READING. I am working my way down a list of articles right now that a friend suggested.

Blogging Articles 55 Must Reads

I hope you will find these interesting. How do you start learning something new?

Saturday, June 30, 2007

When to Hire a Business Coach article in Entrepreneur magazine

When do you think you would hire a coach? The June article in Entrepreneur magazine has a story about deciding when to hire a business coach. Coaching can involve training, but it is more than training because it helps people apply the new knowledge and assess how well they are progressing toward their goals.

Enjoy the article in Entrepreneur and then come back to talk about it. Here is the link to the article:

Friday, June 15, 2007

Choices and Accountability?

“Choices and Accountability”

A teacher friend recently described this two-word recipe for success in life. This fine teacher spent years teaching young men and women how to make wise choices and accept personal accountability. The teacher fostered accountability with peers and mentors to assure that the students’ choices were wise. He also used relationships to verify that the students’ actions and the words matched up to produce the students’ stated and intended outcomes.

This “Choices and Accountability” recipe is a lot easier to see at work in the classroom than it is in adult life. One reason is that the classroom has good feedback systems and metrics that make accountability easier to create/understand. Without a source of evaluation, most people will find it hard to experience success. I did not say they would not succeed, but that they would lack the experience of succeeding.

We thrive on the experience of success. Students, who begin to work hard, receive improved grades. The ability to watch their grades increase can motivate them to work harder to achieve higher and higher goals and to learn to accomplish more in their learning. In this feedback rich environment, they also become smarter and better educated.

Adults find it harder to experience success. Fewer and fewer feedback systems allow adults to assess accurately how well their choices are working. Many adults end up trying to experience success based on income. The logic goes something like – “if I work hard, if I am bright, capable, talented, gifted, etc. then I will be rewarded with income and positive feedback/attention.” How many hardworking, talented good-hearted people do you know today who do not seem to receive recognition or compensation that reflects what they pour into life?

Is this vicious cycle of working harder and harder a sign of failure? People engaging in this kind of cycle certainly do not have an experience of being successful. That does not make it failure. It might make us think about the two-word recipe though. What choices lead us to give more and more while we receive less and less in return? Whom do we become accountable to when we enter into a cycle of low return? Will “Choices and Accountability” lead us to a more fulfilling and satisfying life?

Share your experience.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Keeping Score

Spring training for baseball is coming to a close as the season opens. Maybe your resolutions are in Spring training mode and now you are ready to make the lifestyle changes that will let you win the season of games.

How do you keep score? In addition to using a defined process that lets you gather feedback to evaluate how well you are performing, you also need a way to keep score.

Coaching can help people define the processes that work for them and also identify meaningful ways to keep score and win.

How is your game?

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Process Approach

The New Year is off and running and this is a great time to evaluate your resolution progress. Are you where you want to be? What process do you use to evaluate your progress toward any goals?

If you use a process approach, you will be more productive in reaching goals and evaluating progress. In every field and organization the idea of "process" enters discussions of how to do anything well. It isn't enough to make widgets, we need to define the process of making them and have readily available information about the processes so we can understand the process better and thereby improve processes further. The hope is that this will add value and produce better widgets faster and less expensively.

In your own life have you tried to use a process approach to the goal you want to achieve? What widget is on your list of resolutions that you would like to effectively identify a process for achieving the goal and being able to continuously improve that area of your life even after you reach the goal?

Think "How" do I do that, how can I reach that, how can I understand what holds me back, how, how, how...

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Relationship Workshop

Information about Power for Positive Relationships is available on my website.

This one hour workshop uses Biblical characters to explore patterns in relationships. After the workshop, I will post some of the resources.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Resolution Improve Relationships

How often do you pause and evaluate the vital signs of your relationships? In our health conscious society, we think about exercise, calories, pulse rate and body mass index (BMI) scores. What are the indicators of healthy relationships and how can the assessment help you make choices that improve the quality of your relationships?

Healthy relationships are a great advantage in maintaining physical health. Better yet, relationships are a key component in reaching goals. Take any of your New Years Resolutions and pair it with a buddy and you will be more likely to keep the resolution and you are likely to enjoy the process of making the changes. Almost everything is better with a friend.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Resolutions - Encourage Stories

Hana's Suitcase is a story of how a Japanese Holocaust museum became a voice for the story of a Jewish child who lost her life in Auschwitz. I saw the play last evening. It reminds me that life moves quickly and that the story of a life has tremendous value. The short life of some children tells us a lot about living. I hope this week you will tell someone some of the stories of your life. May your stories live on long beyond your life and may they transform others. Are you living the life that creates the story you want to tell?

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Resolution Success

Some may have stumbled in keeping new resolutions, but others are right on track! I just checked and noticed that this respondent has already met her goal for January. Her plan was to make a monthly entry on her blog. It looks like there are January entries.

Sometimes goals are easier to accomplish when we look forward to celebrating the success that comes with achievement. Think of the victory in a sports event that makes the practice and the playing worthwhile. Take time today to celebrate something you have accomplished.

Tuesday, January 9, 2007

Resolution - How long?

When you "resolve" to do something - even something you enjoy or that is really important to you, how long do you usually succeed? A few days? In the second week of January, I have met two people who already "gave up" their New Year's resolutions. Pick them up again if the resolutions you made are important to you. This time see how long you can sustain your new behavior. Can you make a game of this that you can win?

Saturday, January 6, 2007

Resolution Business Growth

Small business owners are planning to see their business grow in 2007. Every small business needs to know how to grow. Do you have a specific plan for the growth and how you plan to achieve it? A formal business plan is a great tool. If you haven't made time to construct one, that might be the first goal. If you are not running your business with a plan, you might at least try making a daily goal. Once you get good at that, make a weekly goal, then monthly, then yearly and begin to train yourself to be strategic and planful in growing your business. A good coach is a wise investment for solo-preneurs.

Starting a business can be very fulfilling or very hectic. Take time each week or month to read about developing your business or find support in other successful business owners. Owning a business is more complicated than many entrepreneurs realize.

Have you read The E-Myth Revisited Rev Ed: Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What To Do About It?

Friday, January 5, 2007

Resolution - Finances

Money on the mind? This is the time of year when the mailbox fills with financial statements, tax forms and credit card bills. Several readers have financial resolutions.

Saving money is easier said than done. Look for the easiest ways you can find first. Once you have a few of those mastered as life habits, take on the goals that make the most sense for your life stage. Consider the easy ones first because they are fun and EASY. Examples - save spare change, give up something you regularly buy and put the money aside (cigarettes if you smoke, latte if you favor that kind of drink, use coupons and SAVE the savings, etc.). If you are ready for a weekly or monthly savings goal, the 401k or IRA is an area everyone needs to look at these days. Open a savings account or investment that will meet your particular needs. Try creating something automatically deposited from your paycheck or deducted from your checking account. David Bach talks about these strategies in his book The Automatic Millionaire: A Powerful One-Step Plan to Live and Finish Rich.

Remember that goals are attained when they are specific, time focused and rewarding to achieve. What are your financial goals in 2007?