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Overcoming Fear One Quote at a Time

quote
“Worry gives a small thing a big shadow.”

Swedish proverb
 
A problem may start out as a small little thing. But worry makes it grow. It becomes all consuming. You can’t stop thinking about it. Your heart beats faster. You can’t fall asleep or you wake up and can’t get back to sleep.

It follows you, even when you try to forget about it. It turns to fear.

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“Fear grows in darkness; if you think there's a bogeyman around, turn on the light.”
Dorothy Thompson

We’re afraid because we’re in the dark. We don’t know what to expect. The future seems so uncertain. It frightens us.

To get past that fright, turn on the light!

Gather some research. Study the issue. Ask for help. Do anything you can to create more certainty in the face of uncertainty.

You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing which you think you cannot do.
Eleanor Roosevelt

We fear things we think we can’t do. We fear those problems for which we don’t have a solution. We fear what we’ve never done.

Conquer fear by confronting it head-on. Take action. When you do something, you gain control. By gaining control, fear is diminished.

I'm not afraid of storms, for I'm learning how to sail my ship.

Louisa May Alcott

When a storm blows through, there may be damage or there may not. But you faced it!

You learned from it – things you did well and things you would change. You gained confidence to tackle yet another situation.

We all feel fearful at times. Don’t let it consume you. Confront it head on with a plan of attack. Take action. Then learn. You’ll only become stronger!

 

 

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Am I Paying My Salesperson Too Much?

Bigg Challenge
Max is a business owner. He hired a salesman about a year ago. Max put him on the same compensation plan that his other sales people were on (a small base salary with an incentive).

The guy has done a phenomenal job. Max’s company is showing record sales and profits, largely due to this sales person. But here’s the problem: this salesman is now making more money than Max.

Max wants to know if he should adjust his salesperson’s compensation.

Bigg Advice
What should you do about this, Max? Here’s what we think …

Nothing!

Here’s why …

Is it costing too much?
It is possible to over-compensate your people. You can’t design a system where a small number of top performers win bigg while the company loses money.

But that’s not the case here. You’re also making more money, Max. So if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!

Handle with care
We’ve heard of great sales people who were let go when a situation like this occurred. It does happen. But remember the nursery rhyme about the goose that laid the golden egg?

This sales person is the goose. Handle him with care. Like the old Proverb says,

“Kill not the goose that lays the golden eggs.”

Your bigg payoff
Don’t miss the bigg picture. The bigg payoff for owning a business often isn’t what you make each year. It’s what you make when you sell it.

You’re building an asset whose value is based on the income of the business, sometimes called owner’s cash flow. As your bottom line increases, so does the value of your asset. That’s your bigg payoff.

How you can get paid more
You’re making record sales and profits so you can probably afford to add another salesperson. Before you do, look at your infrastructure and capacity to make sure you can support an additional salesperson.

If you can, then go for it!

There’s a good chance, if you do that, you’ll be the highest paid employee of the company again!

Model this employee
We would suggest cloning, but okay … we won’t go there! 

So try to find someone with traits and characteristics similar to this salesperson. To do that, think about what you know about him.

What industry did he come from, if he came from outside your industry?

What experience did he have?

What education?

Are there any other clues you can get from his background?

If you did a personality assessment as part of your hiring process, what did his look like?

And ask your sales person if he knows anybody who might work out well. Bigg goal-getters know bigg goal-getters.

Thanks Max for sending us your bigg challenge. We wish you bigg success!

 

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I May Have to Fire an Employee. Any Suggestions?

Bigg Challenge
Rick has been a manager now for about six months. He has an employee who is under-performing. Rick thinks he may need to fire this employee, but he’s never done that before. He says he would welcome any suggestions we can provide.

Bigg Advice
Do you remember the Cheers episode where Norm Peterson became the executive’s executioner – his job was to fire people. So he took them out for drinks and, by the time it was done, the employee who was being fired felt sorry for Norm. Because as Norm once said,

“It’s a dog eat dog world and I’m wearing Milk Bone underwear.”

So there’s one option, but not one that we necessarily recommend for the real world!

Company procedures
Look to your company’s policy manual for guidance on how to proceed.  Also, discuss this with your boss so you fully understand company protocol and precedents.

No surprises

Except for the most egregious situations, you’ve done something wrong if it’s a surprise. To make sure they’re not surprised, you should follow a process. For example, issue a series of warnings with repercussions for not correcting the performance deficiencies

Round and round we go

Sit down with your employee and explain the problem. Discuss what needs to be done to correct it, tell him or her when you’ll review performance again, and outline the consequences if it’s not corrected (e.g. a 3-day suspension without pay).

At the scheduled time, repeat this process. This time the ramifications have to be greater. (e.g. termination of employment). So if you reach this review and the situation hasn’t improved significantly, the result should be obvious to your employee.

You’re giving them a chance to improve their performance and also covering your liability because you’ll document this entire process and have them sign off each step of the way.

An example

George said that in his early days in business, he was managing his field staff. They worked without direct supervision because they performed work at the customer’s home or office. George had hired a young man who just couldn’t work without ongoing oversight.

George went through the rounds outlined above with little improvement. Finally, he let the employee go. He recommended that this young man get a job in a place where someone could watch over him.

He encouraged the young man come back and reapply for employment once he got used to working in a supervised environment. That never happened because the young man found that he liked working with supervision better.

Firing someone doesn’t have to be negative. Offer any help you can provide. Make suggestions. And realize that sometimes it’s just not a good fit – it doesn’t mean they’re a bad person, or that they couldn’t be helpful to any employer. It just means it’s not working out for both of you here.

Thanks, Rick, for sharing your bigg challenge. We’re sure you’ll handle it just fine.

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12 Ways to Make Your Next Meeting Your Worst Meeting

Studies show that we spend about 15 percent of our work week in meetings. If you’re lucky, right? Many of these meetings are a huge waste of time … and money.

We thought we’d list some ways to make sure the next meeting you run is a bad one:

#1 – Call a meeting even if you don’t have anything to discuss.
Better yet, just call a meeting on the fly because an important issue has come up for you, and you need answers now! It’s important to you so it must be the most important thing for everyone else.

#2 – If in doubt about whether someone should attend the meeting, invite them.

Or just call an all staff meeting, even if it only affects a small percentage of the group. It may be peripheral to their jobs, but they should hear it anyway!

#3 – Make your agenda so vague that no one knows what the meeting is about.

Don’t distribute it in advance so people can come to the meeting prepared. Keep them in the dark about what’s going to be discussed. The best way to do this – don’t have an agenda at all.

#4 – Don’t start the meeting on time.
Or up the ante … don’t be on time for your own meeting. It doesn’t matter if everyone is waiting for you. Your time is more valuable than theirs.

#5 – Kick off the meeting on a negative note.
Tell everyone how bad things are. Look for scapegoats – call them out in front of their peers. People just love that.

#6 – Don’t stick to the schedule.
Or don’t have a schedule at all. Who really cares when this meeting will be over? Nothing is more important than your meeting. Nobody else has anything to do.

#7 – Don’t ever defer a conversation to a later date.
Even if a point of discussion starts eating into precious time, keep it on the table. It was on your agenda, so it must be dealt with today. The meeting can either go long or you can just give the other points less attention.

#8 – Do most of the talking.
Don’t plan for participation. People love to hear you talk. Dominate the conversation. There’s no need for you to listen during a meeting. That’s certainly won’t help solve any problems.

#9 – When someone presents an idea, be quick to shoot them down.
There will be no free flow of ideas in your meeting! You’re in control. Who do they think they are anyway?

#10 – No matter how long your meeting runs, don’t take any breaks.
People love to just sit and sit and sit. It’s best to introduce new ideas to your staff or try to find the solution to an ongoing problem after they feel lethargic from a lack of activity. And of course, no one needs to use the restroom.

#11 – Let that guy (or gal), who loves to hear himself (or herself) talk, go on and on.
Don’t cut them off. Don’t bring the meeting back to its focus.

#12 – Make sure nothing gets accomplished.
When the meeting is finally over, there should be no plans for action, no decisions should have been made, no issues should get resolved, and no follow up should be scheduled. People love sitting around in meetings that don’t accomplish anything.

Our bigg quote today is by Steve Kaye:

“An employee who needs permission to buy a box of paperclips can spend
tens of thousands of dollars worth of employee time on bad meetings.”

Waste is waste … whether it’s paper clips or time.

What are your pet peeves about meetings? Leave a Comment and let us know.

 

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How Opportunity Often Presents Itself

On a recent Sunday, we attended a college graduation with thousands of other people. At one point, we wanted a cup of coffee. We noticed a food court in the distance, but when we got closer we realized nothing was open. We were puzzled – why wouldn’t they be open on a day with so many potential customers?

It made us think about missed opportunities.
You can’t avoid missing opportunities. What you want to do is make sure you spot all opportunities that will make a material difference in your life. Most of us probably have less than five of these in our lifetime. They are the difference between success and bigg success.

It’s often easier to spot the other person’s missed opportunity than it is our own.
Why? Because we experience the result of the other person’s missed opportunity. We don’t experience our own so we don’t know about.

Most customers won’t tell you when you miss an opportunity. At best, they keep it to themselves. At worst, they tell others.

So one lesson is that when a customer tells you about missing an opportunity, be grateful. They’ve served you well. But most people just keep it to themselves.

2 ways to find out about your missed opportunities

#1 – Ask!

Develop a way to get customer feedback in the heat of the moment. That’s when people are more willing to let you know what you missed out on.

It’s not good enough to just ask. You need a system to track the comments so you can respond to them. More importantly, you need to work them into your system. That’s how you continue to serve your customers better.

This doesn’t just apply to people in business for themselves. Ask your boss how you can do your job better. Ask co-workers to whom you pass on work how you could make their jobs easier.

#2 – Observe!

Our bigg opportunities usually don’t come stamped with OPPORTUNITY written all over them. In fact, they’re often presented to us as a problem – a problem that no one else wants to tackle.

Napoleon Hill, in Think & Grow Rich, told the story of Edwin C. Barnes. Barnes had one goal: to become Thomas Edison’s partner in business. He got a job for Edison working as a sales person.

One day, Barnes learned that Edison had just invented the dictating machine. Edison was excited about this new device. But he had a problem – his sales people didn’t think it would sell. Barnes recognized this as his bigg opportunity. He took on the task of selling Edison’s newest invention. He did sell it … so successfully in fact that Edison made him his partner.

So Edwin Barnes spotted his bigg opportunity. To every else it was just a huge problem; Barnes turned it into bigg success.

We’re asking … what opportunities are we missing?
We’d love to know how to serve you better.
send us an e-mail bigginfo@biggsuccess.com,
or leave a comment below.

Our bigg quote today comes from the great inventor himself, Thomas Edison:

“Opportunity is missed by most people because
it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.”

So find your “Ah-ha” in everyone else’s “Ugh”

Next time, we’ll discuss how to find your passion. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

 

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6 Factors to Help You Succeed When Opportunity Knocks

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