In my life, I have performed with the Florida Symphony, the Oakland California Symphony, the Boston Pops Orchestra, and was an associate member of the Chicago Symphony. Now, I work in consulting and have more than 20 years of business experience with specializations in leadership, strategic planning, and organization and process improvement. In a way, music is a lot like business, and during my transition from full-time musician to full-time business executive and consultant, I noticed a few parallels.
What’s your worldview? Think about the ever-shrinking distance between people and things around the planet; how does this impact all of us, not to mention the business-owner or the entrepreneur?
Do you find yourself struggling to form your worldview? As a student, you will find that having a perspective on things outside of your own familiar life will help you grasp concepts that are universal and used across the globe. Being well-rounded and open to new ideas is a recipe for success! If you don’t have a worldview, don’t worry; there are many ways to create one.
Are you looking for something fresh to bring into your next meeting? Individual or group brainstorming can lead to new ideas for 2017, solutions to vexing business issues that plagued you last year, and can help to extend and develop existing ideas.
Here are some tips on how to create fresh thoughts in the new year:
For an individual
Brainstorming should be fun! Shoo away the critic in your head. Even if your thought is ‘off-the-wall’, acknowledge it.
1. Create a mind-map
If you’re like me, the idea of quitting your job makes you nervous. When I left my first employer, I was terrified — but quickly learned that it was OK to make the move because I was working to make my life better. In the end, that’s the most important thing.
Adopting the “put yourself first” mentality can be challenging, though, so here are six things to remember when you decide it’s time to leave.
When faced with a large problem, or several problems, managers can be tempted to think that changing everything will fix everything. They believe sales will rise if only they fire the entire staff, completely change the product line, and/or outsource customer service. Dramatic changes often cause a bad situation to further deteriorate, alienate frontline workers, further frustrate management, and leave customers dissatisfied until the dust settles.
One of the fundamentals of making a sale is to demonstrate value to your prospective buyer. Outlining the features, functions, and benefits (FFBs) of your products or services provides a wonderful selling tool. It demonstrates your knowledge, which builds trust; it links product and services knowledge directly to benefits, which identifies direct value to your customer; it may allow your product/services to “sell themselves;” and it easily leads you directly and smoothly into “the ask.”
Let’s look closely at each of the FFBs and why they matter:
A social media tool that frequently comes up is LinkedIn. People tend to have a love/hate relationship with it. I describe it as Facebook for your professional life. There are certain things I would post on Facebook and others I would post on LinkedIn. Very rarely would I post the same information to both social media tools because the networks are entirely different. Just like you probably have a well-developed personal network on Facebook, you need to take the time to develop your professional profile on LinkedIn.