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Is Passion Overrated?

quote For our discussion on passion today, we talk with one of the most awesome people we’ve met since we started BIGG Success: Jim Bouchard. He’s a black belt turned motivational speaker. He does a great job helping you get in touch with your personal power. Recently, Jim turned the table on us – instead of us being the interviewers, we were the interviewees!

But that doesn’t mean we didn’t take the opportunity to send a few questions Jim’s way – we love to hear his fantastic insight! So today we thought we’d share some of the highlights with you.

Let’s check into the conversation as we talk with Jim about passion …

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jimThere’s a lot of rhetoric about getting into a business that expresses your passion. The business I’ve been involved with for a long time is the martial arts business. Most martial artists will go into business – start a school – because it’s our passion, but it’s not always the best way to make money. I think that’s a very important, and often overlooked, factor when entering an entrepreneurial life. Passion is necessary, but it’s not the only ingredient that’s necessary.

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georgeThat’s a great distinction. It’s the old story – I have a hobby I love that I turn into a business. Now I don’t love my business or my hobby. Think about your hobbies, but also reflect on the elements of that hobby that you really enjoy. Teaching has been my hobby, because I had my businesses full-time. What I got out of it was the joy of helping people and seeing the light bulb come on. Bigg Success fulfills me in the same way.

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jimThat’s what people really need to look at. When you open these doors, you find passions that you never knew existed. I didn’t set out to get into the speaking business. I did always have the ambition to write a book at some point, but I never thought I’d go out into the speaking world. Like you, George, I found it was just a natural extension of the teaching that I liked to do – in my case within the martial arts world.

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marylynn You’re such a great presenter, Jim. How did that happen for you … that you ended up getting into the speaking business?

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jimThat’s a great question – it actually came from some of my martial arts students. I was sharing the martial arts philosophies that helped me create an anchor and a sense of value and worth in my life. They found themselves applying these philosophies to their business and personal life. A few of them encouraged me over the years to take my message to a different audience – not everybody wants to learn how to punch and kick, but everyone wants to learn how to develop their personal power, their capacity to act effectively. That’s how it got started. Then one of my mentors told me that I was already presenting every day anyway – I went on the floor and taught! So for me, it was a very natural transition. But I’m going to mark it this way … one of the greatest gifts that I learned from the martial arts was the idea of beginner’s mind. The whole world is open as a learning experience for us and we should never stop to pat ourselves on the back too long. Perfection is not a destination … it’s a never ending process. So I’m going through the same process as a speaker that I went through as a martial artist. I want to learn, I want to grow, and I want to be a better presenter every day. And I know you guys feel the same way!

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georgeAbsolutely, Jim! The thing that strikes me from your story – you said some of your students made a suggestion. With that one little suggestion, and you listening carefully and then processing it, you found this opportunity. That’s something we all need to be aware of – opportunity doesn’t hit you like a train. In most cases, it’s very subtle. But that’s where you’ll find that thing that you really want to do!

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9 Presentation Tips to Make You a Star

rockstar

Performing live didn’t bother Dean Martin at all. On the other hand, Frank Sinatra got quite nervous before shows. One night, right before a show, Dean noticed Frank’s anxiety again. Dean said, “Why are you so nervous, Frank? It’s just singing!”

Some people would rather walk on a bed of hot coals than make a public presentation. But it’s just speaking! Getting good at presentations is a sure-fire career builder. Just be prepared going in! 

#1 – Define your purpose.
What is the desired outcome of your presentation? Know this before you do anything else. You’ll make a lot of choices as you build a great presentation; know your purpose so you make better decisions.

#2 – Know your audience.
What’s their background? What are their preferences? What has worked well for people who have made presentations to them before? What didn’t work? Design your presentation for their needs and wants.

#3 – Develop the appropriate collateral materials.

With your purpose, audience, and content in mind, develop needed support materials.  For example, believe it or not, some people hate PowerPoint presentations. If you know that in advance, you might use flip charts or some other tool instead.

#4 – Develop a back-up plan.

Ask yourself, “What could go wrong?” For example, we’ve all witnessed technical difficulties. Prepare for it in advance. Your show must go on!

#5 – Plan for interaction.
Think about questions and comments that might arise. In some cases, you’ll respond on-the-spot. In others, you may defer to a follow-up discussion. Some questions or comments may not be relevant. In all cases, know how you’ll stay on track.

#6 – Put yourself in the role.

Refer to our blog, The Role of Role Playing. Rehearse by yourself, but also find someone who will listen to your presentation and follow-up with questions.

#7 – Focus on making a connection.
Seek to build trust. Make eye contact. Relax. Just plan on having a conversation so the real you shines through.

#8 – Don’t waste time.
A little small talk goes a long way. Get to your points early. Stay on point. Allow us to elaborate …

Whoops! We just about went against our own advice!

#9 – Call for action.
You started by determining your purpose. Now we’ve come full circle. Fulfill your mission by asking your audience to do what you set out to accomplish.

So keep these points handy. The next time you’re asked to present, review them, apply them, and you’ll be a star!

Our bigg quote today is by Philip Crosby.

“No one can remember more than three points.”

Wow, we just did nine points. Good thing our readers are three times smarter than no one!

Next time, we’ll talk about how to be rich today. Except we guess it will actually be tomorrow! Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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Subscribe to The Bigg Success Show in iTunes. 

Related posts 

How To Write A Great Report: 7 Tips To Make Your Next Report Stand Out

Write Right 

The Story On Storytelling 

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Be Dashing While Dining

Bigg Challenge: We recently received an e-mail from one of our newsletter subscribers. Brett is raising money for his business. He’s planned a dinner meeting with some potential investors. He wants our tips to make sure his dinner is a bigg success.

Bigg Advice: Let’s start with two pieces of general advice on how to be dashing while dining.

  • Do the little things well. Above all else, be yourself. That’s assuming you are respectful and sincere!
  • Be the leader. You’re the host; they’re the guests. Lead them through the evening.

Now, let’s look at some specifics.

  • Before dinner
    You should choose the restaurant. Try to determine their preferences – favorite restaurant or type of food. But if you can, balance that with your own. If you have a place you know you’ll get great service, go for it!

    Get there early. You set the appointment, so don’t be late. If you’re late, you’re saying to your investors that your time is more valuable than theirs.

    Arrange to pay the bill away from the table. Yes, you’re paying the bill. After all, you’re the one trying to make the sale!

    On the show, George talked about a businessman who wanted to buy a company. The businessman met the seller and they began negotiating. As day turned to night, they reached an impasse. They were $100,000 apart.

    They decided to go out for dinner so they could come back fresh.

    During dinner, the businessman decided that he would pay the extra $100,000 IF the seller paid for dinner.

    You see the businessman had bought breakfast and lunch. He thought it only fair for the seller to buy dinner! The server presented the bill. It sat on the table … and sat … and sat. Finally, the businessman pulled out his credit card.

    That dinner cost the seller $100,000, even though he didn’t pay for it!

  • During dinner
    You set the agenda. Start off with some small talk, while you’re all looking at the menu. Once you’ve placed your orders, get down to business. You want time at the end for their questions or to just build your relationships.

    After dessert, excuse yourself and take care of the bill.

  • After dinner
    Walk them out. You’ll often find that your best conversations occur once you’re away from the table. There’s pressure to discuss follow-up because the night is drawing to an end. Don’t miss this great opportunity! Make sure that you follow-up. Thank them again for meeting with you. Be positive – reinforce that you look forward to working with them.

Thanks for sending us your bigg challenge, Brett. We hope our advice helps you be dashing at your upcoming dinner!

Do you have a bigg challenge? We’d love to help. E-mail it to bigginfo@biggsuccess.com.

For our Bigg Quote today, we felt obligated to defer to Emily Post.

“Manners are a sensitive awareness of the feelings of others. If you have
that awareness, you have good manners, no matter which fork you use.”

Mind your manners and the world can be your oyster!

Next time, we’ll offer some tips to cope with information overload. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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How To Write A Great Report: 7 Tips To Make Your Next Report Stand Out

By Bigg Success Staff
03-07-08

Career Builders

report

Executive Summary

Even though this is the first thing your audience will read, you should write this section last. That’s how you know exactly what to say to give your audience a good overview.

You’ll stand out if you learn to write reports well. Your report should have a clear beginning, middle, and end. This article discusses seven tips to set you apart from the crowd. These tips will demystify the report-writing process. Once you’ve read this article, you’ll be ready to look for your opportunity to put it to work!

Introduction

For some people, writing a report is almost as terrifying as speaking in public. The only way to get over your fear is to dive in and write a report! Then do it again, because if you learn to write reports well, you’ll stand out from your peers.

You’ll start the main part of your report by introducing your audience to your topic. Then you’ll get into the body of your report. Finally, you’ll offer your conclusions and recommendations. After you’ve written all that, you’ll jot down your Executive Summary.

So let’s get started. Just remember – tell them three times:

  • Tell them what you’re going to tell them (your introduction)
  • Tell them (the body of your report)
  • Tell them what you told them (your conclusion)

 

We thought it might be helpful to lay out this article like a report. Our articles don’t normally look like this. However, it seemed like the best way to illustrate the points.

With that in mind, we want to provide you with the framework for effective report-writing.

We’ll lead you through seven tips to make your next report stand out.
#1 – Determine its purpose. What should it accomplish?
#2 – Write to your readers. Who is your audience?
#3 – Proceed in an orderly manner. Research – Write – Summarize.
#4 – Length matters. Cover your topic, then quit.
#5 – Flow logically. Lead the reader from start to finish.
#6 – Appearance matters. Make it visually appealing.
#7 – Review and revise.

7 Tips To Make Your Next Report Stand Out

#1 – Determine its purpose
Before you do anything else, clearly define what your report should accomplish. Are you writing this report to persuade or inform? Will it project into the future or review the past?

If you were assigned this report, discuss its aim with the person who put you in charge. Don’t proceed until you fully understand why you’re doing what you’re doing because everything else flows from that.

#2 – Write to your readers
This is really closely related to the first tip. You can’t write to your readers if you don’t know who they are. Are they experienced or inexperienced? Insiders or outsiders?

Don’t use words, including jargon, that they won’t understand. Provide supplemental information at the end of the report if it will help. Resist the temptation to tout your horn too loudly – your report should do that for you.

Keep your audience at the top of your mind throughout the rest of this process. You’ll look your best by looking out for your readers.

#3 – Proceed in an orderly manner
Now that you know why you’re writing the report, and to whom you’re reporting, you can begin doing your research. Once you’ve gathered all the information you need, you’re ready to start writing.

When you’ve finished writing everything else, you’re ready to write your executive summary – the last thing you write will likely be the first thing your audience reads.

#4 – Length matters
Your report should be long enough to accomplish its purpose, but not a single word longer. Anticipate questions and objections and provide responses.

Don’t feel the need to fill space. Don’t be redundant. Communicate effectively – end of story!

#5 – Flow logically
It may sound silly, but some people forget this simple rule – your report should have an introduction, the body, and a conclusion.

It should flow easily from point-to-point. Lead the reader through a logical progression of the topic from beginning to end. Your first point should naturally flow into the second and so on.

#6 – Appearance matters
Your report should be visually appealing. Your readers should get a sense of what you’re saying just by scanning it. Be liberal in your use of headers and sub-headers.

Use color if your budget permits. Present large amounts of data graphically – in a chart, a graph, a table, or some other illustration. Call out important points. Be creative, but make sure it doesn’t interfere with your message.

#7 – Review and revise
Once you’ve written everything, including the Executive Summary, you’re ready to review and revise your document. You should do this once and then put it away, at least overnight.

When you come back to it, review and revise it again. Then put it away. Read through it at least one more time. You should also try to get someone else to review it for you. A fresh set of eyes will often catch mistakes that you won’t.

Concluding Thoughts

You should conclude by reviewing your key points, pulling all your points together, and calling your audience to action.

In this article, we discussed seven tips to make your next report stand out.

#1 – Determine its purpose.
#2 – Write to your readers.
#3 – Proceed in an orderly manner.
#4 – Length matters.
#5 – Flow logically.
#6 – Appearance matters.
#7 – Review and revise.

Now that’s not so intimidating, is it? Report-writing is just a simple, logical process. So now you have the knowledge, but it won’t do you any good if that’s as far as you go.

Look for an opportunity to put this knowledge to use. Then let us know how it goes!

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Hear today’s lesson and laugh on The Bigg Success Show. 

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Bigg Fun 8

Just For Fun
01-18-08

You can't have Bigg Success without a good laugh from time to time.  You'll find fun videos here, jokes, humorous stories and more. Send your fun stuff to bigginfo@biggsuccees.com. We’re looking for funny videos, photos, e-mails, resumes, signs, jokes, or anything else that relate to work and life.

Video of the Week

"Chicken, chicken, chicken"
 
chicken_pp_screenshot

Here is the best PowerPoint presentation you’ll ever see. We bet you’re too chicken to watch it!
Click here to see the video.
Click here to get a printout of "chicken" on PDF

Interview Story of the Week

"Your Greatest Accomplishment"

Interviewer: “Tell me about your greatest accomplishment.”

Interviewee: “Hmm… I’d have to say …. it was writing a short novel.”

Interviewer: “That’s interesting … but I’m talking about something you did at work.”

Interviewee: “Oh … well, I did do it at work.” 

Thought of the Week

"Think about the differences between prison and work … "

Prison:  You spend the majority of your time in an 8×10 cell.
Work:    You spend most of your time in a 6×8 cubicle.

Prison:  You get three meals a day.
Work:    You get a break for one meal and you have to pay for it.

Prison:  You get time off for good behaviour.
Work:    You get rewarded for good behaviour with more work.

Prison:  A guard locks and unlocks all the doors for you.
Work:    You carry around a security card and unlock and open doors yourself.

Prison:  You can watch TV and play games.
Work:    You get fired for watching TV and playing games.

Prison:  You get your own toilet.
Work:    You have to share.

Prison:  They allow your family and friends to visit.
Work:    You cannot even speak to your family and friends.

Prison:  All expenses are paid by taxpayers with no work required.
Work:    You pay the expenses to get there & then pay taxes to pay for prisoners.

Prison:  You spend your life looking through bars from inside wanting to get out.
Work:    You spend your time wanting to get out and go inside bars.

Prison:  There are wardens who are often sadistic.
Work:    They are called supervisors.

Prison:  You have unlimited time to read e-mail jokes.
Work:    You get fired if you get caught.

Maybe prison isn’t so bad after all!

More Bigg Fun:

Bigg Fun 7    Bigg Fun 6    Bigg Fun 5    Bigg Fun 4    Bigg Fun 3    Bigg Fun 2    Bigg Fun 1

These Presentation Pointers Pack A Powerful Punch

By Big

By Bigg Success Staff
12-27-07 

Career Builders

thank_you_sign_jpg

Just like public speaking, many people are frightened by the thought of making a presentation. Yet learning how to present your ideas well is a sure-fire way to advance in your career. Here are nine tips to make your next presentation unforgettable:

  • Define your purpose.
  • What is the desired outcome of your presentation? Once you know the answer to this question, you can start preparing for it. You’ll make a lot of choices as you get ready for your presentation. You’ll make better decisions with your purpose firmly in your mind.

  • Do your research.
  • Find out all you can about the person or persons to whom you will be presenting. What’s their background? What are their preferences? What has worked well for people who have made presentations to them before? What didn’t work? By knowing your audience, you’ll be more successful in designing your presentation for their needs.

  • Develop the appropriate collateral materials.
  • What are the right materials for your audience? What materials fit your content? For example, believe it or not, some people hate PowerPoint presentations. If you know that in advance, you might use flip charts or some other tool instead. Of course, your supporting documentation needs to fit your content as well.

  • Develop a back-up plan.
  • Ask yourself, “What if …?” For example, what if your computer crashes?

    We’re reminded of the entrepreneur who was scheduled to make a presentation to a venture capital firm. When he tried to start his computer, it wouldn’t come on. Which meant no PowerPoint presentation. Which meant no presentation at all.

    The financiers were put off by this because they felt that he should have prepared for such a possibility. They reasoned that, if he wasn’t prepared for something as simple as this, how could he be trusted to prepare for complex market situations?

    What could go wrong? Prepare for it in advance. Your show must go on!

  • Plan for interaction.
  • Think about questions or comments that might arise during your presentation. Prepare for questions that you want to answer then and there. Plan for questions that you may not want to answer (e.g. price discussions). Know how you’ll get back on track when a comment is made that strays from your focus.

  • Put yourself in the role.
  • Find someone who knows your audience and practice on them. By rehearsing your presentation beforehand, you’ll be better prepared when you’re doing it for real. You’ll be in familiar territory. For more information, see The Role of Role Playing.

  • Focus on making a connection.
  • With most people, what you say and how you say it are less important than the perception they form of you during your presentation. Seek, most of all, to develop and build trust as you present. Relax. Let the real you shine through.

  • Don’t waste time.
  • Depending on the formality of the situation, a little small talk (no redundancy intended) may be appropriate. Then, get to your points. Don’t waste their time, or yours. Getting to your key points early in the presentation insures you get the most attention for them.

  • Call for action.
  • You started planning for your presentation by determining its purpose. Close by asking the person or persons to whom you’re presenting to do what you want them to do.

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