Marketing?

I am cleaning up a new class which I wrote and am republishing this week. I love to write courses that help people. I hate to pester people or nag them. This leaves me in a small quandary; how do I market my new product?

I have done some studying in marketing. As a solopreneur, I have a lot of people who market to me incessantly. With marketing funnels, emails, and even showing up as advertisements in my game apps, I wish not to cause anyone else the anguish that all the marketing focused on me causes. So, as I go through this week of questions to my audience, I have to ask a question. How do you prefer to be marketed to?

I don’t ask this to be trite. Instead, I’m asking because I really like to know, I am very curious. I am looking for and trying to design a marketing system for my products which is as noninvasive as possible. I would not market at all except for the fact that after four years of not marketing, nothing has sold. This proves the theory that if a course is developed in the woods, nobody hears it.

If you have any good ideas or find you have an idea which you think the public might like, please let me know. In the meantime, I am going to work hard at getting information of the course out to the public while trying not to disturb the public’s Qi.

Thank you for thinking about this and helping me.  Please send a comment with any thoughts you may have.   

Getting Started Is Hard

Sometimes getting started is hard. When these times come, the real heroes are the ones who get up and take a step forward anyway. What direction they go, or how far they go, or how fast they go does not matter. The important thing is that they make the initial move. Starting to move is always harder than keeping the momentum going.

Many things can get in our way of that first step. Whether it is a physical problem or a mental block does not really matter. The seeming inability to get started, always feels the same.

There is a trick I used to teach my team when anger, fear, resentment, or other problems blocked a path to moving in positive directions. This is something that I have used and seen work, and I’ll share with you now.

I used to supervise an assembly team for computers and servers. Whenever grumblings, complaints, or other items that detracted from our ability to work would show up, I would take everybody into a conference room. I would explain to them that they were all outstanding workers and yet we had some concerns about actually getting the job done and doing it right. And then I would put a trash can in the middle of the conference table with an entire team of up to 27 people sitting around the table.

I would look at the trashcan and look at the people. And I would explain to them that we were carrying things we absolutely did not need, and these items hurt our ability to build. The elements of this pain were the contrary ideas we had.  The thoughts were also destroying our ability to have a fun and productive shift.

I then had everybody take their hands and wind-up all their negative feelings in a ball. They wound up all the petty problems, all the trivial concerns that were preventing them from having a fun and productive shift.

I would have them take this imaginary ball that they had built with their own hands, smooshing it together as tight as possible so nothing would get loose. And, I would have them throw that ball into the trashcan. With the concerns now on the trashcan, I explained to them some of the good things that they had done in the past, and some of the great things they were capable of in the future. Then I explained we were going to go back to work. I said to them that no one was to reach in the trashcan on the way out and take their ball back out with them.

This actually does work. It is a physical moment in which people can clear their mind, leave troubles behind, and actually go forth to do great things. You don’t have to have a team of 27 people to do this. You can do this by yourself. Just set the trashcan on your desk or in the center of the room.  Get all those disturbances which are blocking you from doing what you want to do out of your head, and into the trashcan.  Sometimes, it’s even reasonable to take the trashcan out the back door and empty it.

Have a great day. Please do not pick up any imaginary problem balls on your way out.

Ask

Thank you for spending some time with me today.

It never hurts to ask. And if you are hurting it is the perfect time to ask. So many things that get tied up in bureaucratic red tape and waiting to go through the endless line of paperwork or sitting in an in-basket somewhere waiting for overworked people to find the time to approve or decline and pass on can be handled swiftly and efficiently by merely asking the question.

Actually, those handling the paperwork appreciate a kind question being asked. The decision makers get to connect with the end-user of whatever the request is. They also can see their actions and motion actually helping a fellow human being. Asking the question makes everyone feel involved on a human scale.

If you asked the question, whether the answer is exactly what you wanted, or not, at least you know the question was considered and weighed, and a valid action was given. And you know, that at least your voice was heard in the making of that decision. It is better to stand up and ask than it is to just let the system run, and then gripe about the decisions for a long time to come.

Is there anything you would like to ask me?

Have Many Irons in the Fire?

Too many irons in the fire hark back to the days of blacksmiths when irons were heated in a fire stoked by a bellows.  The irons were heated red hot and then pounded into shape by the blacksmith using an anvil and hammer. Having too many irons in the fire meant that the blacksmith could not handle all the work he had to do. Today, we use the saying for too many projects that we’re doing.

It is in our training and in our desire to help. We take on some tasks which interest us we take on even more because the powers-that-be want us to do more. And sometimes there is not enough money for two people to do the tasks and therefore one is let go in the other one has to do the tasks for both. This happens more than you think.

Often, this takes place without a lot of complaint up the chain. For one thing, we still want the job, and the higher workload is one of the requirements to keep it. Another item that’s not so well understood is that many of us are wired to take on added work and/or are ashamed to admit that we need help. We see asking for help as a sign of weakness.

Here’s the question, and if you’re new to our blog so I always ask questions. Is it better work as hard as you can, knowing some things will fall through the cracks; or, is it better to ask for assistance or delegate work?

As much as we would like to be the hero, save the day, get all our work done and never need to ask for help, it does not always happen. Would you rather be standing in the boardroom explaining why a pet project was not completed? Would you rather be standing in the board room,  congratulated along with your team that helped to complete the project?

We all live with some fear in the back of our mind about what others may think of us. Most of that fear leads us in wrong directions. Leadership always prefers the person with that will ask for help when needed because the action shows they put the project first. And everything being equal, leadership respects and honors positive project actions.

Next time you have too many irons in the fire get a few more blacksmiths and just pound that project out.

Thanks for being with us. We have piled up a few irons in the fire ourselves. And I am hoping by the end of this week or the beginning of next we will have some exciting news to share.

If You Change Your Angle

Hello and welcome back.

We’ve been talking about comfort zones. Up until now, we’ve been talking about having a comfort zone and going to a new one as something fearful. There are always worries about what might happen. The truth is you don’t know until you try.

Would it be fearful for something to offer you a large sum of money? To give you prestige? To give you a better lifestyle? You’re probably expecting me now to tell you all this happens with the comfort zone to the next. Sorry. As stated in the last blog, I have been around the block a few times. But I am here to tell you that with a little research and a little work moving from one comfort zone to another can be a very good thing.

Look at changing a comfort zone like this. I had a friend in Alaska who won a free trip to Hawaii from a radio station. It was for him and his wife, and the catch was they had to leave in two days. They both had jobs, and kids, and other responsibilities.

Most people would have just said no I can’t go, I have too many responsibilities. The contest involved packing suitcases, so the suitcases were packed. They each made a quick call and explanation to their jobs and their employers who understood and encouraged the trip. The next-door neighbor, who they traded babysitting with offered to take care of the kids while they were gone. And in about 18 hours, they were ready to board the plane and enjoy a vacation paid for by local radio station.

Many things look impossible when you’re down looking up. If you can change your angle of view a little bit, you can start to see ways in which obstacles diminish and opportunities become possible.

Take another look at the worries and concerns that you may have in trying to achieve something new. If you can adjust the view, maybe with reading a few articles or watching a few YouTube videos, maybe you can see a way.

Thank you for being with me today and listening to one person’s ideas. We hope you find the way to seek and find what you’re looking for.

We look forward to being with you again tomorrow. Thank you.

 

 

Eye Test Time?

How are your eyes working for you today? I hope they are doing well. We talk about eyes.  We use them so that we can see the things of this world. It is a beautiful gift that should never be taken for granted.

I have come to know some of those with sight problems.  I have learned, those who see best have sometimes lost the mechanics within their own eyes to perform the function of sight. Having eyes to see things makes it easy and at the same time intolerably difficult.

Those without site often see better because they listen and hear and smell nuances and understand smells and laughter. Those with sight impairments have the advantage and ability to use the other senses. These people I talk of are able in their mind to see the good and the bad. We have to admit there is both good and bad in most things around us.

Televisions and radios give us instant access to information. That’s a good. When someone spends all their time sitting in a chair either listening to the radio or watching TV, they miss out on wonderful things around them. They miss these things because the brain has fooled them into thinking they’re actively doing whatever is on the screen.  The truth of the matter is they’re just watching other people pretend to do it.

Cars have good and bad attributes. They get us where we want to go, they can save lives with ambulances. And they bring families closer. On the other hand, think about how many people are killed in car accidents each year. Think of how many kids run away with the use of a car or a ride from someone else. Think of what the cost is for the car,  gas, insurance, and mechanical upkeep. And, think of how often jealousies arise because of somebody wanting a car that’s better than the next person’s car.

There is good to bad in many things. And some things cannot be seen by many, no matter how good their site is. Think of the caring and love of one another. Isn’t that a good thing? Think of people tonight who have food on the street because somebody cared enough to show up and help out complete strangers. Think of those who at their own expense, to fly somewhere and help reconstruct the church after a hurricane. Or help repair the school dormitory after the tornado. Or, jump into a boat and go out on a flooded town to see if their neighbors are all right and if they can help get them to dryer ground. I’m not sure if this type of sight really comes through eyes are not, I know where it comes from though. It comes from the heart. And everyone has one of those.

Maybe there are better organs than the eyes to look with.

More Than We Can Handle?

Have you ever watched jugglers? Jugglers start off with three of whatever they are juggling. So if they are juggling bowling pins, or balls, or even bowling balls, they always seem to have one in each hand and one in the air. Of course the better they become as jugglers, they still only have two hands, but rather than having a total of three items to juggle, they may have four, five, or six various items. This means many more items in the air and a higher chance of missing something.

And of course, the more items the juggler has in the air, the more likely it is that what will happen? Yep, something happens and all the items being juggled fall to the floor.

The juggler will tell you dropping things is part of growing and stretching their ability. To grow as jugglers, they have to understand that they will drop objects while they are learning. And, they will drop objects while they expand their reach. They know that is part of growing as a juggler.

I believe in growth. I believe in stretching one’s abilities. Although not a large proponent of multitasking, to a large degree, I do know that this is an important talent.  One sought after today in the marketplace.

I noticed that if I’m multitasking various issues at the same time, one of them gets the majority of my attention and the rest during that moment have cursory attention. Does this mean that I will miss things? Will I drop things? Could something end up going undone? Sure, I’m only human. Surprisingly enough the same can be said of all humans who juggle or multitask.

We do not drop items on purpose, although it will, at some time, happen.  At times, in business, we all need to juggle. We and the people we work for take that chance. The trick is…

Not to Take On More Than We Can Handle At A Given Time.