Is Winning Awards Critical for Business Growth?

The accolade does not actually reflect your competency in any respect. But still it’s a proud moment for you, and like others, you followed the pattern.

Next year more people hurled on stage with more accolades and more handshakes but during this period the bubble around your accolade bursts. You realized that your business does not stand out on this accolade and it seems trivial.

This post is not intended to make you feel desist on your achievements but to accomplish or serve the purpose of growing your business on a larger scale as well as acknowledging people associated with it.

This post is also intended keeping in mind that no award can justify any work in the true spirit because every work has different parameters. So, how can an award do justice for two different works which is done under different parameters and different circumstances which are being nominated or compared! The fundamentals itself are wrong.

So it’s not just about the credibility of awards (which is also an issue in the case of some awards), but it’s a question of judging work on the equal ground, which is impossible for any awarding organization to provide.

Have any clients asked you that we will give you a brief or award a work only if you have won awards in the past? Has any purchase officer told you that we would give you higher cost if you have won awards?

So the value of awards is only to ego massage yourself, your clients and employees, in turn, show off to their bosses. That’s the real value.

But when we are talking about business growth, it all boil downs to the competition of ideas, creativity, cost, experiences and bandwidth of operations, resources, etc.

Hence, participating in a race to win awards is just like climbing uphill that does not have a peak.

6 things to do for business growth…

1) Make a bond with the guild

Do not remain in exile despite of your marvellous work. Circulate your work to maximum people related to your industry. Not necessarily to your clients only. Reaching out to them and create a bonding with the same group which can skyrocket your business.

2) Nestle your admirer

Enlist a group of your secret admirer because they are your trump card. Without your knowledge, they refer you or your services to their personal groups. They are capable of bringing referrals to your work quickly and propel up your success ratio.

3) Get feedbacks for your service

It is a core element of your business growth and brings a true reward to your work in a real sense. Consumers envisage “feedback” as to give insight on product service or quality received from you, but ultimately it brings recognition to your work. With a technology-laden business architecture, it is easy to reach your audience and seek for “Reviews and Ratings” on an industry portal. The more you are reviewed and rated, the more you can fetch work from the market.

4) Market your services on social media

All great companies are good at marketing. There are 50 shades of marketing on social media, you have to figure it out which one will strike you as a business deal. Unlike old techniques, where service providers manually reach out to clients and vice versa to promote their services, online platform can be a viable solution.

5) Recurring business from top clients

Loyal consumers are guaranteed revenues for the business. If you don’t have a business model that entice recurring business, then you are at risk of being left behind. Enrolling client to “newsletter subscription” is one way of doing it. Automatically renewed subscription are more preferable than periodic renewal. Besides subscription other factors that attracts recurring business include maintenance contracts, monthly support agreements, contract renewals, etc.

6) Lessen employee’s attrition rate

For any business, stability is a major factor, and this is very much related to employee’s attrition rate. Most of the time employees contribute towards company success, but seldom company thinks about employee’s success. If a company develops a good working place for employees, it automatically circumvents the attrition rate. Design a business model that rewards employees work besides monetary allowance – for instance, create an employee’s achievement pin board – that is shared among the fraternity, build an employee forum, where they give their ideas, provide the opportunity for career and personal growth training and education.

Ultimately, winning awards can never deliver business growth; it is the result of various aspects of business forces working together that counts.

Measurement Defines the Goal

In thinking about the impact of measurement on accomplishment, I read 50 books and listened to 10 more last year because I kept track of them and thus was able to reach my goal. I know I would not have accomplished that without the record-keeping, as tedious as that may be. Simply because measurement is tedious and boring does not make it worthless, in this as in so many things.

Some things simply cannot be measured – customer loyalty, for example. Reichheld wrote, “what gets measured ‘creates’ accountability. With no standard, reliable metric for customer relationships, employees cannot be held accountable for them and so overlook their importance” (2006, p. 17). Instead of measuring the quality of our customer relationships, all we can measure is time and expense, which are inadequate descriptors. While we can resolve to devote a particular amount of time to an activity there is no way to ensure that the time is well-spent.

Fans of Eliyahu Goldratt will recognize this as a common theme in his books (The Goal, The Haystack Syndrome, It’s Not Luck, Reaching the Goal, Beyond the Goal, Critical Chain, Theory of Constraints, and especially Measurement Nightmare). I love Goldratt because his style is so easy to read, unlike, for example, Clayton Christensen’s denser prose.

Goldratt provides in-depth business research and analysis in the context of a fictional company. In The Goal, he uses a Socratic-method system to address constraints or bottlenecks in manufacturing. As the characters discuss the issues, the reader is learning about the keys to enhancing productivity through improved communication.

Clayton Christensen’s books, from The Innovator’s Dilemma (1997) to the most recent Competing Against Luck (2016), are no less valuable but tend to be a much more difficult read. They are more theoretical than Goldratt’s fictional application of business doctrine to particular problems.

Alternatively, Fred Reichheld’s The Ultimate Question (2006), combines the readability of Goldratt with the solidly-grounded business analysis of Christensen in discussing how to reach the goal of achieving measurable and meaningful performance objectives. Doing so is a never-ending quest, and business leaders as well as academics will continue to spend our lives searching for meaningful metrics. Reichheld spends much of his time addressing “bad profits,” which are profits earned at the expense of customer relationships. In short, you can rip a customer off but are unlikely to maintain the relationship after profiting at the customer’s expense.

All three authors are great, but Reichheld has something unique to say which all of us in business will do well to hear – short-term profits are often long-term disasters.

How To Keep From Crashing When The Engine Stops

The single-engine Cessna 172 was about 1,500 feet above the Pacific Ocean when that engine stopped.

I still don’t know why it stopped. All I know is that I was the pilot and the sole occupant of the plane. I had just taken off from a small airport in Western Washington. The pre-check had been routine. The takeoff had been uneventful. The sky was blue, the wind was calm. It was a beautiful day for flying.

And then the engine stopped.

What would you do? How do you react when the pressure’s on? How can you make sure you’re at your best when it matters most?

Leaders face pressure all the time. Pressure from above to deliver results. Pressure from below to motivate and inspire. Pressure from the clock. Pressure from the budget. And, of course, pressure from the “real world” outside of the workplace: the spouse’s upcoming surgery, the kid’s braces, the car’s flashing “CHECK ENGINE” light. And a leader is expected to produce under pressure, no matter where it comes from.

Some of these pressures are predictable, like the report that’s due every Monday at 9 am. Some are unpredictable, like when the single engine of the airplane you’re piloting stops at 1,500 feet above the Pacific Ocean. But the answer to both is the same:

Preparation.

Anyone who’s ever trained for a pilot’s license will tell you that that training includes dozens and dozens of simulated “engine out” exercises. The instructor, without warning, pulls the engine back to idle and says, “Your engine’s just gone out; where are you going to land?” Do this drill often enough, and it becomes a part of your subconscious. To this day, when I’m flying commercially from one speaking engagement to another, I’ll sometimes look out the window and ask myself, “If I were flying this plane and the engine(s) went out, where would I land?”

That’s how you produce under pressure. That’s how you ensure you’ll be at your best when it matters most. You practice. Over and over again. You do mental drills. “What would I do if there’s a delay in the supply chain?” “What would I do if my number one producer got an offer from our biggest competitor?” You prepare.

Pilots routinely prepare for the unexpected. So do professional athletes. And military commanders. People whose jobs require them to produce under pressure are continuously preparing.

Shouldn’t you be too?

When my engine stopped, I went into “automatic react” mode. I trimmed the plane for maximum glide ratio. I tried a restart. When that didn’t work, I initiated a 45-degree bank turn back to the runway-not knowing if I would make it or not, but knowing that this angle of bank gave me the most distance relative to altitude loss. I mentally went over the procedures in case I had to perform what is humorously called a “water landing.”

Fortunately, my calculations worked, and I made it back to the runway (with just inches to spare).

But it wasn’t due to luck. It was due to preparation.

So-what will you do when your engine stops?

Office Design to Improve Productivity

Sometimes, adding chalkboards and whiteboards can seem handy, but there is more than you can do to improve your office space. Here are just a few office design tips to help improve your overall productivity.

1. Idea Storage

One of the worst things that can happen for creative people is that they have a great idea but do not have anywhere to write it down, and they lose it. There is also the chance that you will end up doing a huge amount of research on a topic that you are not going to use. Whiteboards and notebooks are a great option for writing your ideas down, so you can continue to work on your main task for the day.

2. Remove the Clutter

It is important that you are regularly cleaning your office. Clutter comes from your creative mind working, but it can make focusing and getting your work done difficult. You should make sure that you have enough storage for all your items and that you have access to your most used objects.

3. Bring in Some Nature

We are biological creatures, so we should be spending some amount of time outside every single day. However, being inside all the time has a huge effect on our work. While it would be nice to spend a lot of time outside, for most jobs, this is not really possible. If you cannot take your work outside, why not bring nature to you? Try opening the shades and letting fresh air. This could help you feel more energised and help you get more done. Plants can also be a great option to add to your office, you just have to remember to water it.

4. Table and Chairs

We have all experienced having to sit at a table and having to consistently having to readjust to be comfortable, so we could focus on our work. This is why you should take the time to find a desk and chair that both fits your body and the way that you sit. This can take some adjusting to if you are working on an office where you do not have control over when items are ordered. If you are working at home, try to sit in chairs that you are thinking about buying for around 30 minutes to find out if they are comfortable for you.

There are many office items that you may need in your office that you could be overlooking. Whiteboards and noticeboards are great tools that most people overlook until they need these items. However, you should only add items that you think you are going to need regularly to your office, so you can save space and make the room look less cluttered.

What Are You Not Doing?

When you see someone you haven’t seen for a while, how do you greet them? We often ask “how have you been doing?” We also start with “what have you been doing,” particularly of other business owners or co-workers.

We ask ourselves:

What am I going to do today?

What did I do yesterday that can come off my list?

It’s a great feeling to tick a task off a list.

What can I do next?

The doing makes us feel productive, so much so that any plan might be a good one, as long as there is “doing” happening.

We have our to do list and our plans and we march along the path we have set for ourselves. The focus is on what we decided to accomplish and how we intend to meet our targets. Other possibilities are no longer in our line of sight.

We don’t see the mountain to the right of us when we are staring at the trail (or the mountain lion either).

I was recently speaking with a client who was struggling. We spoke about what she had been doing, but the struggle really was a result of what she had not been doing.

There was a laundry list of actions she had been taking. However, a more essential list of steps exists. These are ideas outside of her awareness, that she may or may not have considered, but that were not part of her current plan.

Whether she was not aware, or was avoiding or procrastinating was not immediately important. She was not asking herself the question – what am I not doing that could make a greater impact?

Often our challenges are a result of what we are not doing. The actions we are taking are just not making it happen. If you are not seeing the results you want, reflect on what you are not doing that is crucial but difficult.

If you can’t see what you could be doing that would make a difference, get help from other people, books, or any resource that can offer tips and best practices and honestly examine whether you are excluding activities that are creating great results for others.

I’m not advising blindly copying what others do, or taking advice because it’s worked for someone else in your industry. However, you don’t know what you don’t know, so learn more and see if an action outside of your plan, and potentially out of your comfort zone, might make a significant difference.

Here are a few examples:

If you are spending most of your time behind your computer, perhaps you have not had enough of the actual conversations that would lead to sales or job interviews. Relationships are everything, and one can only go so far in the virtual space. What you might not be doing is picking up the phone which could be a vital leap forward.

Perhaps you are currently employed and planning to start a business. Are you talking to people about your idea and networking, or are you keeping it a secret until you leave your current position?

You want to scale your business but you are doing everything yourself, including the work that is not your expertise and that you are overqualified to do. You are not hiring the help that could move you exponentially forward.

What are the reasons you might not include the most potentially rewarding tactics in your daily operations? Below are some common reasons people don’t do what needs to be done.

Procrastination and Delaying – You will do it, as soon as… There are many reasons to procrastinate and put off a project, a hire, or starting something new. Oftentimes, procrastination is equated with perfectionism. Without getting into the many reasons people procrastinate, Tim Urban humorously explains what goes on in the brain from his perspective in this TED talk. More importantly at the end, he highlights the cost of procrastination.

Vulnerability – Plain and simple, showing up in certain ways makes one feel more at risk for criticism, rejection and other potentially painful experiences. Spending time comparing oneself with others only makes it more difficult to show up authentically and take charge. What is the worst case scenario? You get stung, maybe multiple times? You will never know how much people might embrace you or what you offer if you are focused on the potential rejection.

Avoidance – You may avoid the exact moves that will propel you forward because you haven’t adjusted your identity to BE that person who is taking the actions you are avoiding. Rethink who you are as you move along, so you can accept yourself in an unfamiliar form.

Allowing Interrupters – You are likely a nice person and when others in your life need something, you stop and attend to their needs. It’s allowing the urgent to supercede the important. In this case, it’s an easy way out of breaking through your own insecurities and fears. It’s “positive procrastination,” and therefore easier to justify. The other justifiable one is learning instead of doing.

Bright Shiny Object Syndrome – We have all experienced when a new idea comes to mind, and it is so good and so clear that you don’t even feel like you need to write it down because there is no way you could forget such a gem. It is all consuming for a day or more, but then another idea of equal brilliance shows up. The first idea is old news and has lost the initial magic and becomes back burner material, if you remember it at all. Ideation is a great strength unless you can’t commit, then ideas are distractions.

I’m willing to bet there is an idea in your mind to move your career or business forward that you have considered, maybe many times, and have not tried. Decide to try one activity or business tactic that you are not doing now and see what happens.

Michelle is the CEO and founder of Limit Free LifeĀ®, a coaching and personal development company designed to help clients discover and transition into careers or business ventures that satisfy their souls. As a former CPA, business consultant and now a certified business coach,she combines a strong background in finance and transition management with an intuitive coaching style.

A Simple Guide on How to Find Purpose in Business

Enterprise is a term that refers to basically beginning a business. A business person must have an unmistakable vision without restrictions and utilize that vision to fabricate something completely new, bringing whatever knowledge of the world is out there. The truth they need to make sets a whole new challenge, the truth that every opportunity gives rise to new ways of earning money. The vision must influence others.

How would you “discover” mission and vision deserving of your opportunity, vitality, and judgment? Wouldn’t you be able just to hold up to unearth an alluring open door?

In case you’re as of now attempting to find your entrepreneurial calling, your main goal, consider the procedure I’m explaining beneath. It’s basic and clear, however, requires devotion. I trust you’ll concur it merits investing at any rate as much energy in your “life look” as you would on a pursuit of employment, experts program, or another entrepreneurial preparing.

End is the Start

While deciding your basic purpose for existing, you have to comprehend what is most critical to you. Consider not only your present needs but rather what is probably going to stay imperative to you for the following 50 years. What do you think that your trust in business needs to change in this very world? Of course, it has to. What part would you be able to play in evolving it?

I frequently hear individuals say that they don’t know how to Start Something as long as they can remember, maybe from their childhood. However, that reaction is deficient and requires more investigation. The entrepreneurial reasoning depends on managing vulnerability and pushing ahead in spite of equivocalness. You might not have everything about out right now, but rather you ought to have a decent feeling of your esteems and standards and what makes your life worth living.

How to Do it, eh?

To enable you to decide your definitive objectives, begin by addressing everything. Converse with everybody you trust and respect, the individuals who you consider fruitful, and ask what they esteem most in life. Meet with individuals in their eighties and ask them what they love most about their lives. Discover what appeared to be vital en route, and what they observed to be imperative after a lifetime of hardworking and business success. Ask about their most noteworthy delights and failures. As you investigate their triumphs, disappointments, and recollections, you will discover the point of view for yourself. Read incredible abstract works and books on logic. Invest energy alone in a peaceful place. In case you’re religious, reconsider the essentials of your conviction framework. The thought here is to solicit a considerable measure from questions, inspect your suspicions, call your particular feigns, reflect, and question once more.

Your Voice Of Freedom, Risk Compatibility, the desire to Challenging Business Ventures and a real effort to put a solid foundation under your dreams can find the Real Purpose in business as well as Life for you.