How To Create and Complete By Using Strategies

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A strategy is a plan of action.  It’s a method for creating, doing or accomplishing something.  We often hear of Marketing strategies, Business strategies, Brand strategies, etc., but the entrepreneurs and businesses owners I work with in my small business coaching practice mostly need Creation and Completion strategies.

The marketplace rewards completions.

In 10 years of business coaching I’ve developed several effective strategies so that my clients can follow through and complete what they say is important to them.

In an effort to stick to a more reliable posting schedule, look for a small business strategy every Thursday.

In previous posts, many readers commented on my challenge of telling the whole truth to yourself about yourself.  It’s an essential component of playing a bigger game.

Well-engaged strategies encourage radical honesty.

When used correctly, a strategy offers us four gifts that unplanned creation does not.  These gifts are, approach, focus, intention and game plan.

1). Approach is the access or entry point for the strategy.  More than half the battle is getting started, and certainty of approach allows us to hit the ground running.

2). Focus allows us to create an environment and a structure most conducive to successfully carrying out our strategy.  With focus we can simply drop everything that does not advance our chosen strategy.

3). Intention dictates our overriding posture while carrying out the strategy.  Lightness, flexibility, urgency and intensity are all examples of a guiding intention.

4). Game plan is the procedure, plan, process or system that’s all laid out for us in steps to follow.

GO DIRECT is this week’s strategy.

When business owners aren’t completing or creating programs and projects, I’ve found that fear is needlessly complicating their efforts.  They’ve fallen prey to distraction, procrastination, avoidance or perfectionism.  When any of these are in play, owners often fear the very action that would set them free.

The GO DIRECT strategy lasers in on only the actions that most directly help secure what we want.  But since we’ve needlessly complicated things, we have to first drill down to identify what we really want.

Step One is > Identify precisely what you want.

I’ve had clients tell me they want to “get the word out” about their small business. In coaching, I’ll ask them “what will that do?” They’ll say, “It will help us to be seen.” I’ll ask, “What will that lead to?” Their response “Well if we’re seen, we’ll be an option when prospects are looking.” “Looking for what?” Finally they say, “to hire us to (fill in the blank).”

You see where this is going? They don’t really want to get the word out, to be seen, or even to be seen when prospects are looking.  What they precisely want are clients.  So why not GO DIRECT to securing clients?  Social media, blogging and other forms of marketing can be less than direct means to get a client.  So my coaching client and I will agree to a number of very direct client acquisition actions.

Step Two is > Describe exactly what you want, in vibrant detail, so you’ll know it when you see it.

If you want clients, somewhere the client you seek is seeking you.  If you can describe that client, understand her needs and think about serving her, you are actually using strategic intent to increase the probability of being hired by her.

Step Three is > … actually Step Three is to use a different effective strategy for daily completion, which I’ll share next Thursday.  Many strategies play off one another to create the business you most want.

Do you routinely follow-through on what you say is important to you?

If you don’t follow-through, then take charge by working a strategy that works for you.  Strategies are deceptively simple.  But don’t let their simplicity keep you from using them.

Strategies can save your life and your business.

Do you use creation and completion strategies in your life or business?

Want a test drive coaching session where we tackle your biggest business challenge and agree to the most effective strategies to get what you want? All you have to do is ask.

Experimenting For Fun and Profit

Sometimes the best way to stimulate a cash stream is to shake things up and play. Money is attracted to confidence. Confidence is a natural occurrence that seldom visits when we are tight and resistant. The best way to transcend resistance is playfulness.

Ever feel like you’re holding the reins of your business too tightly? Boldly and playfully experimenting could be just what you need in order to make a business breakthrough.

Remember how imaginative and carefree you were as a kid? Do you recall how authentic you were when you frequently lost yourself in play?

More and more I’m seeing a connection between experimentation, community, playfulness, confidence and authenticity. Soon I intend to give this topic the depth it deserves.

But for now how often do you break out in song in the midst of your workday?

Often in my small business coaching practice, I make agreements with clients, just so they’ll lighten up. Lots of stuff has been written about the benefits of play to enhance creativity. But it’s even more powerful than that.

Something happens in our minds and emotions when we fearlessly experiment. It shakes something up in a good way. Like my buddy Bill, a marketing expert says. “You got to try shit to find out about shit.”

Barbara Swafford at Blogging Without a Blog, interviewed me today about a recent experiment. Read about it on her blog here.

One key to successfully launching a small business startup is to define and win the inner game. It’s not so much the outside challenges that throw us off but the tricks and mind games we play on ourselves within. Most budding entrepreneurs need to lighten up and play a game that they can win.

Sometimes that means putting your heart on your sleeve for all to see. Liz Strauss at Successful Blog, is launching an authentic experiment right now. I’ll be playing over there, perhaps you’d enjoy it too.

How about you? When was the last time you just tried something bold and new, just for the hell of it?

Do you ever make your work a game you can win?

Think you might need to lighten up? Give it a shot – you may amaze yourself.

Got It?

We ask this question to check for understanding. We can also gain insight by questioning ourselves. When grasping new knowledge, it’s useful to both discover what we are newly aware of and then to express that realization.

Grasping and expressing a newfound realization can be the most powerful outcome of honoring agreements. As a career coach specializing in authentic business building and self-employment freedom leaping, making agreements with my clients is essential. The resulting value of keeping agreements makes up for a lack of experience in budding entrepreneurs.

Honoring agreements is a leveraged tool because it builds confidence, delivers an intended result and creates fresh perspective, all in one. From the vantage point of fresh perspective we can see greater opportunities than we could previously and we see them in a different light. That’s when one needs to ask oneself this power question to complete this leveraged learning opportunity.

What have I realized as a result of completing this distinctly new action?

Realizations are often the greatest result from completing agreements, because they can be parlayed into even greater understanding and sustainable evergreen wisdom.

If you aren’t taking every opportunity to question yourself about your realizations then you are squandering opportunities for which you’ve already done the work.

Guy Kawasaki’s talk on Innovation and introduced his concept of jumping to the next curve of innovation.

Let’s look at career guidance and where the existing curve began. The start of the curve could be called economic survival. When my folks were coming of age in 1940 they gave little thought to fulfillment and took the best job they could find to feed their family.

The next point on the curve could be high school guidance counselors and their pitiful attempts to place everyone in a pre-existing box. Graduating from high school in 1968, I recall four labels in my yearbook that represented our only available choices of study. General – “you’re a loser get a job in the mill.” Commercial – “you’re not the brightest gal, so maybe you can be a secretary.” Academic – “you’re bright enough to go to college, so go and you might figure it out there.” Scientific – “you’re a genius-nerd who could become a doctor if you don’t squander your intelligence.” No wonder our college years were such a relief.

The abundance of choices in an atmosphere of relative freedom made college seem like Nirvana compared to high school. With raised expectations, we hoped that our college career counselors could finally help us nail our career identification quest. But to our disappointment, this next leap in the curve was barely a hop. Those overworked counselors simply added confusing psychological assessments that raised more questions than answers.

Many of us left with a university education but no more prepared to find our true calling. Upon reflection, perhaps there was never much of a curve at all, because when we entered the work force, many of us did the same thing that our parents did. We took the best job we could find. Then after 10-30 years of less-than-fulfilling work, the courageous among us began to ask, “Is this as good as it gets?”

Join me in my next post to read the continuing evolution of career guidance and discovery. I’ll also share my realizations regarding jumping this curve.

Do you usually reflect to recognize realizations?

Have you typically asked yourself what you’ve realized from honoring your agreements?

For that matter, do you typically make explicit agreements?

What was the essential leap of understanding in your right livelihood quest?

There is a shortcut to discovering your authentic business. Request a complimentary Confidently Make the Leap strategy session.   [Read more…]