4 New Year’s Resolutions You Should Consider Making

Now that the Christmas rush is over the attention turns to 2016.

In consideration of the goals that you may be looking to set in 2016, l am pleased to suggest four New Year’s resolutions you should consider making.

1.Get More “Social” With Your Social Media.

People ConnectionsSocial Media is a game changer.  It allows us to connect instantly with anyone around the globe.  However, as great of a communication tool that social media in all its forms can be, it can also isolate us from the “person to person” communication so vital to creating the real and lasting connections that can truly help us get things done.

Therefore, resolve with me this year:

  • To make a phone call rather than send a text.
  • To use your mobile devices to create a short video to explain your point rather than to write a post.
  • To acutely meet your LinkedIn connections; discovering how you can be of assistance to them.

2. Never let “I don’t have enough time” be an excuse for not getting things done.

Man looking at the clockWhen the clock turns midnight on January 1st, we will all have the same 525 600 minutes to make our dreams, wishes, goals and accomplishments come true.  So the question is, why will some people get stuff done during those 15,493 hours 20 minutes and many others will not?  Yes, the answer between getting things done or not, often comes down to ability or money.  However, it should never come down to time.  We should be the master of our time instead of having time master us.

Therefore, resolve with me this year:  

  • To account for our time by using a planner to schedule our daily, weekly, monthly and yearly activities.
  • To be responsible for our time by vowing to make our meetings better. Use an agenda to make sure the most important items are covered while being committed to the revolutionary notion of starting and ending our meetings on time.
  • To take advantage of our time by looking for ways to be more efficient. With a dedication to making technology work of us instead of us working for technology. All the while, understanding that multitasking, despite how much technology is designed to give us that advantage, actually creates more inefficiencies.  It actually causes us to use more time than our “multitasking” efforts will achieve.

3. Be willing to mentor and be mentored.

MenatoringKnowledge is the key to becoming better at what we do and how we do it.  Knowledge is best obtained with experience guided by mentors.  A mentor is a person or friend who guides a less experienced person by building trust and modeling positive behaviors. An effective mentor understands that his or her role is to be dependable, engaged, authentic, and tuned into the needs of the mentee.  We need more effective mentoring in our lives.

Therefore, resolve with me this year:  

  • To freely share our knowledge and experiences with others.
  • To become a thought leader by writing blogs on LinkedIn and other social media.
  • To challenge ourselves with an active learning life highlighted by reading articles, books and whitepapers. Also, by attending lectures, seminars and webinars.

4. Set goals instead of making resolutions.

Research from the University of Scranton suggests Set Goals Hand Red Markerthat just 8% of people achieve their New Year’s resolutions

So why do so many people fail at these resolutions?  Well the answer is simple. Resolutions are merely wishes, however, setting goals make our wishes a reality.

Therefore, resolve with me this year to set goals that are:  

  • Clear and Simple. Instead of developing a large list of aspirational goals, create a set of small, yet, attainable goals. With the clarity these goals can bring, the accomplishments will come.
  • Set Tangible Goals. If you can’t measure it, you can’t achieve it.
  • Advertise Your Goals. Letting people know what you are up to is a powerful way to gain the support you will need to get things done. Announcing your goals is a great way to build accountability, especially, in the Social Media era.

Final Thoughts

The New Year is filled with hope, opportunity and promise. And despite the ups and downs that will come, I am confident that with vision, perseverance, and hard work we not only reach but exceed our God given potential.

 

Have a happy and productive New Year!!! 

4 Surefire Ways To Get Ahead

There are many paths to success but the only way to achieve it and – that is to get ahead.  While there are many elements to getting ahead presented below is a summary of 4 surefire things that will bring you success.

  1. Commit to becoming a Become a lifelong learner

ThinkerIn our busy world, it can often be hard to fit in time to learn anything that isn’t essential. However, the real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new lands, but in seeing with new eyes.  Commit yourself to a lifetime of learning and you will always be ahead.

Some Tips  

  • Invest in your own career advancement: Don’t make the mistake of depending solely on your job provide career development. Take the initiative find the right class and training for you.

  • Strengthen your Strengths: We all have innate talents and abilities, strengths if you will. However, they go undeveloped or, worse, unnoticed because we focus too much on eliminating our e weaknesses rather than perfecting our strengths.

  • Become the go to person: Being the “Go To Person” increases your employability while helping establish you as a reliable resource of knowledge and assistance.

  1. Develop A Fantastic Network

Networking5Effective networking is more than just personal marketing. A fantastic network is driven by a strategy to be of service to others first and foremost.

Some Tips  

  • Upgrade Your Social Media Profile

All kinds of people use all kinds of ways to learn about you. Your updated social media profile puts you in control of what people discover about you.

  • Join A Professional Organization

Given the number of responsibilities that you juggle on a daily basis, joining a professional organization may not be one of your top priorities.  Whether you join an industry-specific group, a special-focus group membership in a professional organization will allow you to make valuable professional contacts and gain access a wealth of useful information.

  • Seek Out Reliable Mentoring

Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Group considers mentoring as the   single most important thing we can do to advance our careers.  Formal or informal the value of getting solid advice on our career and life is something that cannot be overlooked.

  1. Exercise, Sleep and Think

exerciseRegular physical activity is one of the most important things you can do for your health.  Exercising along with regular sleep is the mental kick start needed to keep your mind sharp so you can do your best thinking.

Some Tips  

  • Exercise Improves Everything

From boosting your mood to revving up your sex life, exercise improves everything.   All of these advantages and more are available to you with as little as 30 minutes per day.

  • Give Yourself The Gift of Sleep

The data is overwhelming predictable and restorative sleep can help you cope better with psychological stress.  A good night’s sleep is also a key part in helping you ward off physical problems including high blood pressure and heart conditions.

  • Find The Time to Think

Our lives are busy with few moments of real reflection therefore the words than “I have no time to think” is perhaps the most universal feeling of workers across the income spectrum.

Forbs Magazine recently posted 11 Ways To Create More Time To Think The post features brilliant yet simple ways to generate more thinking time.

  1. Create a Nest of Accountability

Accountability is like rain everyone knows they need it, but no oneNest wants to get wet.  Get ahead by creating the attitude, systems, and practices that will keep you accountable.

Some Tips  

  • Stay On Top of Your To-Dos

There’s absolutely no reason why any task should fall through the cracks in this modern age of digital calendars and smartphones. Yet many of us miss deadlines or opportunities. Here’s advice from accountability expert Nellie Akalp:  “The second you discover a task you need to take care of — even if it’s just following up on an email you sent — make a note on your digital calendar. Set it as an alarm and forget about it…until your calendar reminds you.”

  • Delegate

You don’t have to be responsible for doing every action that you are accountable for.   Truly accountable people are willing to hand over some of the work to others.  Decide what is absolutely imperative for you to do, then hand other tasks to someone more qualified to take them on. Set deadlines and stay in touch to ensure those tasks get done successfully.

Set Goals and Work Towards Them

When you set goals, be super-specific: How much do you want to increase sales? What revenue number will you aim for next year? Then, detail out how you will achieve those goals. Who needs to be involved? What steps do you need to take to accomplish them? The more you plan out your goals and steps to reaching them, the more you will actually succeed.

Getting Ahead Day By Day

workOvernight successes are few and far between however, success is still possible if we are willing to work on getting ahead day by day.

©2015 Marben Bland

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The McWonderful World of All Day Breakfast at McDonald’s

mcdonalds-breakfast2“McWonderful”, is what the Washington Post calls it.  HuffPost termed it as “a dream come true,” Charlie Thomas in Pittsburgh remarked “it was about time.”   All of this in reaction to McDonald’s testing of making breakfast available all day.

The pending change in Mickey D’s long standing policy that breakfast ends at 10:30 A.M. is not only a huge shift for the fast food giant, but an acknowledgement of the changing desires of its customers.

Understanding our customers and adjusting our processes to their needs is key to a vibrant business.  This month McDonald’s will test the all-day breakfast concept at select San Diego area restaurants.  The results will provide answers to three fundamental questions McDonald’s and all of us must know to remain vibrant.

  1. Is The Market Real?

How often have you arrived at the Golden Archers at 10:35 A.M. Egg McMuffinwilling to do almost anything to get an Egg McMuffin?   When that happens you have fallen for part of the charm of the McDonald’s breakfast.  That is it can be sometime difficult to get it.

With the 10:30 A.M shackles removed will you still crave an Egg McMuffin, at 10:35 A.M. or 12:35 P.M. or 8:35 P.M.?

Like your business McDonald’s can’t depend on the sentimentality of the occasional customer who may want a McGriddles after the 10:30 cut-off.   You must know if the market is real. The San Diego test will provide the hard data needed to make the all-day breakfast decision.

Question: What data guarantees that your market is real?

 2, Do We Have The Right Systems and People?

Crew MemberCan the griddle at McDonald’s serve two masters? McDonald’s famed 10:30 AM breakfast cut off exist largely because of the limited capacity of its kitchen equipment. The same toasters and grills that crank out Sausage Burritos must be ready to handle other menu favorites, like chicken nuggets and burgers during the all-important lunch hour.

With high customer traffic during breakfast McDonald’s doesn’t offer a made-to-order option.  Eggs, sausage and hotcakes are pre-cooked and held for breakfast item assembly.   The all-day breakfast will not provide the luxury for McDonald’s to pre-stage these items.

For the all-day breakfast to work McDonald’s will have to rework systems and retrain staff so the griddle can effectively perform double duty.

Question: What is your capacity to change with a shifting market?     

  1. Can We Bet The Other Guy?

food-logos

While sales of burgers, chicken nuggets and other dinner items are falling.  Sales of biscuits, bagels and other breakfast items are on the rise.

The battle for supremacy in the fast food breakfast wars are underway.  Taco Bell has engaged the batter with a new weapon:

The California A.M. Crunchwrap which contain just about every Taco-Bell-California-AM-Crunchwrapitem one could want in a breakfast sandwich.   The arsenals of other fast food combatants will improve.  As they all take aim on the Golden Arches of the breakfast leader.

Will the internal disruption of ramping up to serve breakfast all day jeopardize the battle to beat the other guy?

Question: What are you doing to stay ahead of the other guy?

 Critical Questions / Critical Decisions

McSignThese are not ordinary times for McDonald’s.  Sales are down, stores have closed, and the company is looking for a new CEO.   The critical all-day breakfast decision will forever change the basic way the company does business.    How ironic that a company built on beef and lunch will perhaps now depend on eggs and breakfast for its future.  Welcome to the McWonderful world of the all-day breakfast at McDonald’s.

 © 2015 Marben Bland

What are your thoughts about the McWonderful world of the all-day breakfast at McDonald’s?

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Truett Cathy The Power of Making it Personal

Untimely success in business and in life is not dependent upon superior knowledge of the details of what we have been assigned to do. Success is entirely dependent upon how we treat and deal with people.

Truett Cathy, who transformed a small Atlanta area restaurant into the nation’s largest quick-service chicken restaurant chain understood the importance of the power of making it personal.   A devout Christian, Cathy brought his faith to his business endeavors, building an enterprise based on the golden rule, ”Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”

“The Closed-on-Sunday” policy is the clearest example of how Cathy incorporated biblical principles into the workplace. Rare within the food service industry, “The Closed-on-Sunday” requires all Chick-fil-A restaurants—without exception to be closed on Sunday.

This policy allows employees a day for family, worship, fellowship or rest and also underscores Cathy’s desire to put principles and people ahead of profits. Yet, being closed on Sunday has not hurt profits as Chick-fil-A has the highest same-store sales in the quick-service chicken restaurant channel.

Truett Cathy, Chick-fil-A, founder and chairman emeritus, died on September 8, 2014 at the age of 93. In announcing his death the family reiterated that the “The Closed-on-Sunday” policy will remain in place.

Cathy was often quoted as saying: “I’d like to be remembered as one who kept my priorities in the right order. We live in a changing world, but we need to be reminded that the important things have not changed. I have always encouraged my restaurant operators and team members to give back to the local community. We should be about more than just selling chicken; we should be a part of our customers’ lives and the communities in which we serve.”

Truett Cathy understood the power of making it personal, if we are to be successful we must understand that power as well.

 

©Copyright 2014 Marben Bland │

Marben Bland is a professional speaker, writer and business strategist. Specializing in assisting business with the acquisition of human and financial capital along with the strategies required to succeed in the marketplace. Find more post at www.marbenbland.com