How to Help Others

Yesterday I blogged about timeliness and how that helps us to take care of our clients. The question for today is how to get clients. And although the answer is easy, the work that goes into it can be sometimes arduous.

The easy answer is that you need to be there for people. And as you are there consistently, you will find that the people you help become your clients. The people you help probably know other people who need your assistance and those people also become your clients. So that leaves us with our first law of finding clients. Be there for people and help them, as you are able.

Remember that help comes in many forms. Just having a conversation with someone and letting them know you understand is a big help. If they need something specific that you do not know about, maybe you have a friend who could help them. Sometimes the most valuable people are not the ones with the deepest pockets or extensive knowledge. Sometimes the most valuable people are the ones who consistently get out around others and know how to connect people with needs to those who can accomplish things.

My father-in-law was great at this. He would meet people and talk with them. He would invite them over for drinks or a barbecue. He had the 40-yard line season tickets for the Dallas Cowboys. And if he needed or would like to have something, he usually knew where the excellent bargains were, and when to buy. He was a great person who I wish I could better model myself on.

The one thing I can guarantee you does not work well in finding clients is to build something that you feel people need. After creating your item to sell to others, sitting in your basement along and waiting for somebody to buy it never works. And there is an excellent reason for this.

First off, if you build something with the idea of ‘If you build it, they will come,’ they will not. You need to talk to people, find out what the real need is, and then plan how you can solve it for others. Secondly, and far more disastrous, you may build something that has no problem to solve, and therefore, there is no need for buying.

People need to have a problem which they genuinely want to solve, for you to sell a product to them. They also need to know that your products exist. We lived in a worldwide economy where our senses are constantly bombarded by people trying to sell us things. If you want to sell something, you need to figure out who needs to buy it and where you can best get in contact with them. I am saying you have to market. I am also suggesting the sane and responsible marketing of your product. If you want to be effective, do not look at marketing as selling a product. Look at marketing as helping a friend.

If you care to know more about any of my blogs, either to have me write more in-depth blogs on the subject or to send you more information, please contact me and let me know.

Thank you for being with me today. I hope to be with you again soon.

Helping Others Succeed

One thing I see entrepreneurs are doing is striving to help others succeed. I’ve noticed this from people who work in software, airlines, work to put people into space, build clean-burning stoves for impoverished areas of the world, and in many other endeavors. These people have done very well in each of their own careers, and they never forget nor stop looking for ways that they can help others. They know that helping even the most destitute and most humble people around the world helps us all.

When someone who does well turns and helps others to take a step up the ladder, all of humanity is positively affected. I remember reading that we can climb the ladder of success to a certain height, depending on the lowest rung that a person stands on. For us to go higher, everyone must move up the ladder.

It seems like when somebody hoards their fortune, they seal their own fate. For they have walled themselves off from the rest of humanity. The money earned ends up doing no one any benefit, not even the person who made it. The walled-up money just turns the owners to paranoia and fear of others. There is no benefit for anyone involved.

We really don’t do well by only helping ourselves. We do well by helping those around us. Those who need something and are unable to figure out or do for themselves. Those who would work hard and do well if the proper tools, knowledge, and encouragement were available. This work is done not by those looking for a handout, it is the work that is done by those who are given a hand up.  A handout keeps everything and everyone in the place where they are. A hand-up allows us all to grow.

Here are three ways you can help. When you’re on the street, and you see somebody who looks like they’re just having a terrible day, just smile and give them a nod as you pass them and maybe say something kind, even as it’s just good day. Maybe when someone is down, you provide them with a couple words of encouragement. And maybe, on occasion, you step into a local mission either to help out on the soup line or just talk with the people there. The neat thing about a helping hand is that it may take little time and no money.

What is one of the most essential items that missions tend to need? Your used plastic grocery bags. Those in need turn the bags into solutions for a multitude of uses.  If you are just throwing them away, check with a local charity helping the homeless to see if they could use the bags.

Helping others succeed and get on their feet is something we can all do.  We do not have to be rich, or really well off.  And, we do not want to just give a handout.  Yet, if we take a look at the real needs, we can usually do something that will provide a real hand up.

Thank you for being with me today.  I hope to be with you again tomorrow.

Can I Help You

I wish I could do more for more people. The truth of the matter is I can’t do anything for anyone, they have to do it for themselves. I can work with people and guide them. I can ask the tough questions that only those seeking for themselves can answer. And, I can hold them as accountable as they wish to be.

I can, though, and am willing to jump in the hole someone may have figuratively fallen into. Others may feel that I’m crazy jumping into a hole when someone else cannot find their way out. Yet, I’m okay with it. I’ve been there before, and I know the way out.

What I can do is help people learn new tools and new abilities to help them as they move forward through life and explore the future. I would mention something about boldly going, however, between concerns over plagiarism and split infinitives I have decided to take a considerably safer route. I am here to help you with the specific concerns you are looking to fix and do better with.

I have books on Amazon right now teaching how to research and make a map to guide you to your future. This is important because I have many friends who worked hard, went to school, striving for something they truly wanted. When they got to their destination and started working, they realized that even though they had gain success, they did not enjoy the job and really did not want to be there. Some ended up not using their advanced degrees, taking trade jobs that they enjoyed and preferred to do.

There are many ways to research various professions and careers. The time you spend doing so is minor in comparison to getting a position you can’t stand and having to start again from scratch. There are even ways and some jobs where you can shadow somebody for a day and learn what the real work is all about.

Within the month, I should have my new planner system out. It comes with training, and each planner is designed and assembled to the specific needs of the individual using the planner. We do this by working with you in understanding what you need and either loading pages you need into your planner or designing the planning and data pages you need from scratch. Your planner comes with either a book on how to use it or course to train you about the planner step by step.

I don’t want to say much more at the moment. If you’re interested in the planner designed specifically for you, please let me know. I am also looking for six volunteers who will use the system and give me feedback on what works well and what I can work to improve. If you’re interested in receiving a planner and training, please let me know. I can’t promise everyone who volunteers will be picked as one of the six. I promise that everyone who volunteers will be seriously considered.

Think about it.

Thank you for being with me today. I hope to be with you again tomorrow.

Be True to You

 This week we are talking about things that get in our way and what we may consider doing about it. I have heard it said, ‘life is what happens when you’re waiting for a bus.’ And I suppose that’s true. We seem to be waiting for something, to go and do something, and in the meantime, our life happens all around us. My question is, why am I just waiting? Why am I not giving up on the bus and just going out and starting to do something?

Life seems to give us friends, family, and other helpers whose main job obviously rotates around keeping us in our place. These people sometimes seem to be zealots at performing their tasks of holding us back. We have a love for others in our hearts and ideas that can help people, why would we ever want to keep our ideas and projects from those who could positively use them.

I remember a family member who counseled me on not sending my oldest son to a large school or university. I was always told that community college would be good enough for him.  I shielded him from the advice of this family member and encouraged him anyway. He received his bachelor’s from Colorado College and his doctorate from Dartmouth. Upon receiving his doctorate, the family member looked at me and said,’ Who knew?’

There is a considerable danger in letting others write or decide your path into the future. They do not know what you are truly capable of, and do not know your desires and abilities to help others. After all, each of us has good within us and gifts to share with the world. Imagine what great things will happen when you go to work on your projects and better the world and the lives of others.

I am not saying go off on a wild goose chase, and do not lock yourself off from everybody. Work with others. You have an idea of what could be, and you could build something bright and shiny and new. Yet, if you do not work with others, you never find out what they really need and really want. Many great inventions have failed and now litter the path to the future because the inventors did not take into account what the people who would use those inventions wanted or needed. If you look at the great entrepreneurs and visionaries we have today, you will see that they all take stock in the people around them. They listen to others.

I hope you take time to understand that the naysayers mean you well even though they are often misguided. And I hope that you build positive friendships with those who encourage you and can offer sound advice. Each of us has talents, and I encourage you to find the ones that help you to positively engage and help others.

Thank you for being with me today. I hope to be with you again tomorrow.

Care For One Another

There is a time we come to realize that we are human. And as such, we need to take care of ourselves. As we grow in life our bodies age and with this aging comes the need to take better care of both ourselves and those around us.

We find the time comes when we cannot do strictly for ourselves. And we have to count on a partner (wife, spouse, significant other, or friend) to do things with us and eventually, for us. It is the dedication of two people to each other and/or extended family which helps each of us to go further and accomplish more.

We need to be kind and caring to others. Because as we age, our marriage, friendship, partnerships, all serve to help us in our later years. Just we as we are part of the team to help others in their later years.

You can see that I have not called these times the golden years. If they are much like my years lately, rust would be a better descriptor. Yet, please remember even Rust doesn’t mean you’re down and out. Rust just says you have a little extra work to do to keep the chassis running.

I know that my alter ego is the mean old Master Sergeant. Please remember the job of a mean old master sergeant is genuinely to be of service to others and to help those others grow and do better. It is not something ordered by rules and regulations. The tasking of service to others actually stems from the heart.

Take care of your family, your friends, all those you care about and even more for those who care about you. You may find your work coming back to you filled to the brim, shaken down, and overflowing.

Thank you for being with me today. I hope to be with you again tomorrow.

 

 

 

Mean Old Master Sergeants

You will hear people refer to me as a mean old master Sergeant, and one of those people are going to be me. Therefore, I feel it important to explain to you what a master Sergeant is and what a master Sergeant does.

To the outside observer, a mean old Master Sergeant can seem rough and grumbly. Someone you really don’t want to cross. The rough façade you see is precisely that, a façade. Master sergeants and other senior noncommissioned officers are charged with helping the younger people who are learning their way in the military to make good decisions. The goal is that new members of the service learn how to be better soldiers, sailors, Marines, and airmen.

Looking at the desires and goals of the mean old master sergeant in that light, I am proud to be one. What makes me happy? When airmen have a tough choice and make the right decision. It means they are learning and are taking one more step forward to success.

As a mean old master Sergeant, I look for ways that others can find wins. What tells me I’m on the right track? When a young person in our service can come to me and ask a question of why. Why do we do it this way? This has several positive implications.

Asking a question of the rough and grumbly senior NCO means the person asking the question trusts the senior NCO. It also says that the questioner believes he or she will receive accurate information, and the person asked will not hold asking the question against the newer person.

Does this translate into the civilian world? You bet.  To give an example, let me explain what happened once when I was teaching computers. Most of the clients learning to use the computers were older. And one day we picked up a much younger client.

The client didn’t really want to be there and was being pushed by others to take the class. The client started the class loud and noisy, demanding attention and irritating the rest of the students. I talked with the rest of the learners and told them just to give the person a little leeway, and in time, I was sure that things would work out well. As time went on, things in class quieted down. Then one day the student received a call and was overheard in the middle of the call saying that it was not a dumb class, it was an informative and enjoyable class with a lot of practical knowledge. Nothing warmed my heart more than hearing a student say that.

Mean old master Sergeants have a place in life, both in and out of the military service. If I did not use the skills I have learned over decades to help others, I believe I would be wasting a valuable resource.

Do you have a resource you can share with others?

Thank you for being with me today. I hope to be with you again tomorrow.

Donating to Others

I never knew this, but the first Tuesday after Thanksgiving (the day after Cyber Monday) is known as donation day. I think this is a great idea. Mainly, because none of us got to where we are today without someone giving us a hand. It is always good to respect the fact that we do not stand here alone.  And, sharing what we have with others is a great way to say thank you.

Many people donate money. The funds collected can bring a lot of good to people in need. I have seen such donations help people return to their family homes, keep a roof over their head, keep utilities running, put food on their table, and help those who don’t have a place to live. I have seen magnificent things happen from even a small donation.

Some people have a hard time making what they have meet their needs, yet, they still donate. Rather than giving money, they give their time. Time, as I often say, is far more precious than money. When we run low on cash, we are able to go out and earn more. Money is a renewable resource.

When we run out of time, that is all there is. This is because we each only have so many years, months, weeks, days, hours and minutes allotted to us on this earth. We never know how much time we are here for, and when it’s over, time is up. Time is a nonrenewable resource. That is why I look at time as being more precious.

I have seen people donate their precious time joyfully and with love in their heart. And because they do so, I have seen the recipients of their hard work find that spark of joy. It is more than just receiving the needed items, both the receivers and those donating the time to help them share exciting moments of mutual caring and thanks. And because of this, I also believe that those who initially provided the money to purchase the needed items, which made all this possible, are doubly blessed as well.

I believe that we each should donate in our own way. We should give respectfully, in a manner that respects those who will receive and shows respect for ourselves. You will be surprised by the blessings and the help that even a small donation can provide.

Thanks for being here with me today.  I hope to be with you again tomorrow.