Archive for the ‘Business’ Category
Since this is such a personal experience I thought I could share with you how I managed to break the barrier of my comfort zone today.
As a woman who takes regular exercise, I begin to feel restless if I have missed a few days. This is simply because my body is used to being dragged out onto the street and pushed for anything from 30 minutes to 1 hour.
Having been on holidays in March for 3 weeks, I was travelling light and knew there would not be much opportunity to find appropriate times and places in order to exercise. I had my husband to consider also, and as we would be travelling for 3 weeks, it would be unfair to have to focus on running in a safe place for over an hour. I made the Executive decision to take 3 weeks off running, knowing that it would be replaced with healthy daily hiking (or tramping as it is known in New Zealand) and a healthy diet. Read the rest of this entry »
Ah yes, Romance, synonymous with the month of February.
And another aspect that is connected directly with February and romance, is the “29th Proposal”. This will pass without a second thought for most, and some of us will recognise it for exactly what it is – an extra 24 hours that we can pile more activity into.
So before you fill that “extra” or “free” day with work, life or busyness, let’s just take a single step back and review the prospects:
Family day out
Self day off
Strategy Day On
or… The Absolute Romance
Ah yes, the ultimate of romance. Your ultimate may be heading to Rome for a romantic weekend away, or a lifetime adventure in Antarctica or the Atacama Desert. Whatever your thoughts around this very special day, here are a few pointers to whet your appetite:
Yes, it’s that time of year again. And yes, it can be very stressful.
- Have you left your card sending until the last minute?
- Have you left your Santa buying until the last minute?
- Have you left your Christmas Shopping until the last minute?
- Have you left buying the tree until the last minute?
- Have you left everything until the last minute?
If you answer YES to any of the above questions, then read on to learn a few tips on managing your stress better this year.
“Procrastination is the art of keeping up with yesterday” ~ Don Marquis
Now, for a fact – we can only experience the present moment. YES, we can really only actually experience every moment once. Everything else is imagined, whether past or future.
So if you are stressing about past Christmases, or any past event, then you are relying on memory to provide the stress factors. Those stress factors can limit us in our everyday tasks. If you are stressing about the coming Christmas, or any future event, then you are just imagining it and creating your own stress factors. Based on what? Future event stress is normally based on previous events, so we are back in the past, which is imaginary, remember?
So how do we DO procrastination? How do we manage to NOT do the important things? How do we let stress effect our wishes and goals?
Here we go, a little exercise for you:
- Get into the role of Christmas shopping, decorating the house, planning the dinner, handling the in-Laws
- See yourself in that role, doing those things
- Now imagine the PERFECT day shopping, decorating or planning
- What happens in that day? What do you see, what do you hear? What do you notice? What do you smell? What are you feeling? (really, really get into the feeling of it, remember this is your PERFECT day)
- What exactly happens in that day? And when?
- Now simply, imagine how you can grasp as much of that as possible. What can you tap into, what can you access?
That’s it! The rest doesn’t matter, because it’s negative, and we want positive don’t we?
Do this exercise a few times and feel the difference about the situation now. How does it feel different? Keep those feelings in mind and remind yourself of your perfect day when it’s time to do that thing!
“Nothing is so fatiguing as the eternal hanging on of an uncompleted task” ~ William James
*If you would like to learn more about tackling procrastination and the benefits of coaching, please contact Elaine through the Contact Page or by telephone at +353 (0)86 1955660. Be the CHANGE you want to be in 2012!*
As a small business owner, you ARE your business. If you have ever seen any of the worldwide “Dragon’s Den” type programmes on the TV, you will observe that the dragons invest in the person behind the business as much as the concept itself.
It is important for that business owner, to constantly watch trends, be familiar with their market, and adapt to the changes that invariably happen. We also need to keep an eagle eye on what the competition is up to, and notice what they are changing, and are those changes in line with consumer changes, or are they trying to influence the consumer / client.
This is where business owners can get “bogged down”. Constantly watching out for the enemy, copying their strategies, playing cat and mouse to try and gain ground.
Let’s say our business has been successful in the past, and now, inevitably things are tough. We batten down the hatches, cut costs, cut prices, downsize, and cut budgets. You are probably familiar with any one of these strategies.
But why do we do this? Because the strategists recommend it? Because your competition is doing it? Because of the proven facts from the past? Because historically, it works?
Think about this: where do we get the notion that repetition is the best tactic? What influences us to think that what worked before will work today, for our business?
Now think about this… is this the same type of recession as before? Will the next boom (there WILL be a next boom) be the same as the previous one? I would imagine NO, and NO!
So, why then, are we doing the same things now that we did before? Read the rest of this entry »
Once in a while, great things happen. In fact, great things happen every day. We move our business forward every day. We find out things that help us in our business every day.
It’s the time of year for workshops, events, seminars. So far, my October and November calendars are full with events and traditionally, this is quite common for entrepreneurs and business owners.
A little gem that I am heavily involved with is the Cork Women in Business Group, headed my Margaret Smith and Tori Hawthorne. What a great pair, and I have written about Margaret and her appearance on nationwide recently.
This support group provides a space for women in business to find out what they need to know to help them in their business and our monthly speaking events cover finance, law, networking, sales and other relevant areas.
We, the Irish race, are great for the “ole banter”. We could talk for Ireland and we do talk for Ireland. Most conversations begin with a discussion about the weather. Only in Ireland could you hear “sunny spells, chance of showers, developing into thunderstorms, to clear later with a sharp frost” in one sentence. Unless of course you are in Inuvik perhaps. Here is a very funny one I was presented with by our national weather forecast the other day:
As an Irish born and bred national, I have lived and travelled in many different countries. The experience helps me learn about other cultures and countries, but one thing I realised over the years is that people are the same wherever you go – they are good or they are bad. As a race, we interact at an intellectual level, and tend to seek out similar people as ourselves.
The trick really is to look beyond your comfort zone. Look beyond your immediate personal network. Look beyond your social “class” whether that be financially or socially. Look beyond your own capabilities and seek mentors who do things that you think are great.
Build your network. Build your online network through social media, social networking and Read the rest of this entry »
What a week it’s been!!
You know that time, when you know something is coming up, yet you are not quite prepared for it? Well, I am sure we all feel like that when we know we will be exposed to the public at large. I really feel the hardest part is actually watching yourself.
It’s been a great week for Cork on the telly this week. I have the absolute pleasure of being closely involved with a fantastic group of business women in Cork, who meet to support each other and help out with business issues. We spend more time discussing social media, accounts, sales and services than passing business cards and delivering elevator pitches.
The real benefit for the business owners, is the support and information received at the meetings themselves, but more so with the buddy-up system. This allows two randomly picked members to meet 1-1 in between the monthly meetings, and really learn more about their actual businesses. This is the core of the referral and networking that is done secondary to the support and encouragement we can provide for each other.
Like the Bulmers advert on TV lately, when we have a problem what do we do? We fix it ourselves! And that is what Cork Women in Business Advice and Support is all about.
It began in Margaret Smith’s front room, and now we are moving to hotel premises and have regular great speakers every month, a fantastic website, facebook page, twitter account, a dedicated committee and up to Aug 2011, 35 paid up members. I am confident membership will increase rapidly as a consequence of the Nationwide Show this Wednesday.
Of course, no better time than to share air space with the wonderful charismatic James Whelton who has just completed his Leaving Certificate, is planning his graduation alongside running his successful business and FREE coding workshops for young people around the country.
Well done all, a great week for Cork, and a great boost for business owners, technology and innovation, all by the river Lee.
The programme is only live on the RTE Player until mid Sept, so make sure you watch it in time [Apologies for the adverts before the actual show]. There is a YouTube version of just Margaret’s story – click the PIC below to watch it.
Well done Margaret, you are now a star, an inspiration to many women in Ireland this week!!!
P.S. The neck piece I am wearing in the show is from the beautiful Kuta collection from Dink Design
I am no stranger to health and fitness, having been a part of various therapies, classes and courses over the years, mostly as a preventative rather than a cure. Those of you who know me personally will attest to the fact I have NEVER dieted, but do not indulge in fast and overly processed foods, but like anyone else, have my “weak” areas.
I fought these weak areas for a long time, and there is something about turning 40 that helps us realise that health is so important, because without it, you do not have quality of life.
Now I allow myself my indulgences whenever I want them, and compensate by eating healthily otherwise, drinking lots of water and exercising on a regular basis. To be truthful, mostly my exercising consists of brisk long walks, and generally going to a class of some kind.
Last year, in beginning of 2010, I discovered running was a faster way to improve fitness and endurance, and of course kick me back into a state of racing heartbeat and pushing myself beyond my comfort zone. I wrote a post about it at the time about motivation, and decided to achieve my goals by training for both the Cork Women’s Mini Marathon AND the Limerick Women’s Mini Marathon. I followed a programme to the minute, and achieved my training goals for the first race. The second race was exactly a week later and unfortunately I did enough damage to my lower back that Read the rest of this entry »
This blog post is dedicated to RW and written to invoke thought, not provide you with the skills and attributes needed to be an Entrepreneur. There are hundreds of articles out there to provide you with the “know-how”. I am exploring the “why-how”.
3 yrs ~ Montessori school, fun learning of the basics.
4 yrs ~ Primary School, initially fun to evolve into evening homework, mandatory sports, trips to the Headmaster’s office and mandatory conforming to the rules of the school.
12 yrs ~ Secondary School, more mandatory subjects, mandatory sports, mandatory extra-curricular activities, optional extra subjects (instead of playtime), mandatory career guidance (I won’t bore you with the obvious advice from a religious convent.)
17 yrs ~ Third Level, optional everything. Chaos!
20 yrs ~ Out on my ear. Get a job.
24 yrs ~ I opt out. Sound familiar?
Two decades of being inside numerous education systems. I finally came to the conclusion, the working life I had been groomed for, did not suit me. I may have also thought I did not suit this working life. My instincts told me that I would make money in my life, but not the way I was conditioned to. Where do I turn for guidance? When every person I knew was conditioning me to “get a job”.
24 yrs ~ Enter a boy Read the rest of this entry »
I have met Seán Gallagher twice recently. Ironically it was over cups of tea. Whilst networking! Seán thinks networking is akin to going to an AA meeting “Hi my name is Seán, and I am an Entrepreneur!” And everyone in the group says “Hiiiiiii Seán”.
Boy, I had to laugh at that, as sometimes that’s exactly how it feels. And just a few days ago, at a speed-networking event in Co. Cork, the MC mentioned that there were 45 people in the room selling. He then asked the question “So, who is buying?”
What a pointless exercise: going to a networking event to sell your brand, business or latest product, when everyone is there to do exactly the same thing. There is nothing more frustrating than coming home with 28 business cards in your pocket, and not knowing anything about the person behind the business.
So here are my top 10 tips for good networking practice, and are guaranteed to have you noticed and remembered: Read the rest of this entry »