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Why Your Boss Holds You Back – Part 2

what to do if the boss holds you back | BIGG SuccessToday, we’ll wrap up our mini-series on why your boss holds you back. Last time, we talked about the secret motivation of your boss.

It’s the reason why – in spite of all the hard work you do, in spite of the results you deliver – your boss doesn’t want you to get promoted.

Simply stated, he or she has a vested interest in keeping you right where you’re at.

So what can you do about it? What are your options?

We’ll share three of them today.

Listen to this post! Click a player to hear George & Mary-Lynn on The BIGG Success Show Podcast. (Runtime 4:50)


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Go for it anyway

Tell your boss you understand the concerns. But you want to be sure you’re ready when the right opportunity does present itself. You’d like to practice interviewing.

Even that may not get the job done.

So let’s assume the opportunity is out-of-town. If need be, and if you feel really strongly about your fit with this particular opportunity, offer to pay for the trip yourself. Take an extra few days and call it a mini-vacation.

We have a friend who did exactly this. He got his boss to set up the interview. He didn’t go to practice. He went to get the job.

And he did! You can do it too!

Jump ship

You may not be able to get a better gig with your current employer. But if you’re feeling like you’re hitting your head on a ceiling, start looking for a place with a higher ceiling!

Expand your outlook to other companies.

Reach out to select individuals in your network.
None of them will likely be the person who gives you a job.
But one of them is likely to know someone who might.

When you chat with them, just let them know that you’re quietly exploring your options. You’re doing great where you are. You love the place.

But you’re ready for a bigger challenge and it doesn’t seem forthcoming where you’re at.

Strike out on your own

The best way to have a boss who never holds you back is to be your own boss. But be ready – this boss may be your toughest task master!

Before you launch, be sure you’re ready for the rigors of entrepreneurship. It may pay to spend a little time preparing before you give up the day job.

And don’t think it has to be an all-or-nothing proposition. If you have enough energy to take on a job with more responsibility, you should have enough energy to start a part-time business.

You can build it part-time until your free cash flow replaces your current job.
Then you can launch full-time and let the sky be your limit. Now that’s BIGG success!

If you have more questions than answers about being your own boss, maybe we can help.

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file | podcast:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/biggsuccess/00788-030812.mp3

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The Way You Wear Your Brand

GMC-gives-a-terrain-to-mark-horvath-at-SOBCon2011

Connie Burke from GMC hands over the keys to a new Terrain to Mark Horvath

We recently attended SOBCon 2011 – a conference for people with businesses like ours. The organizers, Liz Strauss and Terry Starbucker, are two of the most amazing people you could ever hope to meet.

They manage to put together an exceptional experience every year. There’s the term…

Experience

Listen to George & Mary-Lynn share this experience on The BIGG Success Show podcast. Click the player to listen

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[haiku url=”http://traffic.libsyn.com/biggsuccess/00696-050511.mp3″ title=”The BIGG Success Show #696″]

Many small business owners forget they’re in the business of delivering experiences. You don’t sell products or services; you sell experiences. You deliver those experiences through your products and services.

An unforgettable experience
We experienced something at SOBCon this year that we didn’t think we would ever experience first-hand. Before we get into that, a little history:

Last year, we met Mark Horvath from InvisiblePeople.tv. It was one of the non-profits we all put our heads together to try to help.

Mark was just trying to get traction. He’s doing great work and, like a lot of entrepreneurs, he often doesn’t get much recognition.

It was great to see Mark back at the conference this year. But that was just the beginning…

GMC was one of the sponsors of the conference. They gave a Terrain to Mark and his organization!

It was a very Oprah moment.
We never thought we would see something like that in person.
It was incredible.
Mark was speechless.
We all were!

So we’d like to thank Liz and Terry as well as the great people from GMC – Connie Burke and Hugh Milne – for a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

But experiences aren’t enough
SOBCon is THE conference for open hearts and brilliant minds (and yet they still let us in the room!). The experience Terry and Liz delivered was true to the way they wear their brand.

How do you wear your brand?

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George KruegerIf you’re a long time reader of this blog, you know that I am a BIGG fan of the Rat Pack. So we couldn’t resist twisting Frank Sinatra’s song “The Way You Wear Your Hat” for this post.

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Mary-Lynn FosterIt seems only fitting: Terry often sings to get things started. And of course, there’s the now annual karaoke outing.

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In case you’re not familiar with the song, it’s a love song. More specifically, it’s a lost love song. The point is that you can take everything away except for the memories.

It’s also true for your business. We’ve talked about creating experiences before. But here’s something that we hadn’t thought about until this event:

Experiences can be forgotten.
Experiences are ubiquitous.
Positive memories are precious.

You have to do something BIGG now and then to create happy, lasting memories for your customers, your employees and all the people your business serves. It’s the key to BIGG success!

What are you doing to create happy, lasting memories in your organization?

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file | podcast:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/biggsuccess/00696-050511.mp3

Get a Brand Over – Part 2

brandoverToday, we continue our discussion with John Tantillo, The Marketing Doctor. John is a behavioral research psychologist with over twenty years of marketing experience. He is the President of the Marketing Department of America and regularly appears on Fox News and Fox Business News. Last time, we discussed the difference between a makeover and a brand-over. Let’s get back to the conversation …

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marylynnJohn, let’s say you have a brand and it’s not working. You need a brand-over. How would you do that if you’re an existing business?

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johnThe first thing you have to do is reach out to your customers. This rebranding, or brand-over notion, comes from the marketing concept. It is not “build it and they will come” ala health care that’s being promoted. It’s find out what people want and give them what they want. For example, let’s say you have a car wash and you think hot wax is what everyone wants. But you’re not getting the number of people you want through your car wash. So you ask your customers, “Why aren’t you coming to my car wash?” They say, “It’s the hot wax. It interferes with my paint job.” Ah! What does that tell you? You shouldn’t be using hot wax, even though people in the business have told you that hot wax is great. Ask your customers. Stay in touch with them so you can give them what they want. How do you get somebody to like you? You tell them what they want to hear or give them what they want. That’s the secret.

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georgeThat’s how I got Mary-Lynn! Companies have kind of gotten this, John, although they don’t always deliver upon it. As individuals, isn’t it important to understand that a brand is a promise? We have to be careful about what we promise to be absolutely certain we can deliver it.

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johnAbsolutely. There’s nothing worse than promising a consumer something you don’t deliver. I’ll give you an example of this. Many years ago, in the New York area, there was a beer called Peel’s Beer. Their advertising was so clever that it generated a lot of initial sales. The problem was nobody liked the beer. They promised a great beer but they didn’t deliver a great beer. Not a good thing.

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george
Maybe they should have positioned it as the beer you drink after you’ve had a few?

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john
There you go! Are you sure not in marketing?

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marylynnJohn, you always offer a “Tantillo Takeaway” on your blog. I’d say our takeaway with you today is “know your target market.”

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john
That’s always the secret. Who is your target market?

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georgeYou recently had a great post about institutional communication versus individual. The example you gave is that John McCain now has more followers on Twitter than the White House. So the individual has power with new media that institutions don’t have.

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johnThat is correct. It’s driving the heck out of these Washington media types that the blogger, or the candidates themselves, can go directly to the voter. If we’ve learned anything today, it’s that the game has changed. You have to be on top of all the new social media. I’m 58 years old and I’m on Facebook with over 3,400 friends. I’m on Twitter and LinkedIn. I even went to my old high school web site and now I have a page there. The point is that you have to use every marketing tactic you can possibly use in today’s world. It’s funny. It’s the very reason President Obama became President Obama. He was sophisticated. Now, in the institution of the White House, maybe he feels that he has to move on or do things more traditionally.

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marylynn
He’s also more edited now than he was before.

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john
No question about it.

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marylynnLet’s talk about small business owners. We hear all the time that they don’t have the time to get out there and utilize these new media tools. They don’t even know how to get started. What would your suggestion be to them?

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johnYou have to do it. Enlist young people – high school students, college students home for break or friends of your own children. It doesn’t have to take a lot of time. To give you an example, I started Facebook about a year or two ago. I didn’t really do anything. Then I went down to my favorite place in the world – God’s waiting room – Miami Beach, Florida – at Christmas time. I’d picked up a book in the library, about how to market yourself on Facebook. It’s been an increasing positive function – how do you like that, George – in terms of Facebook friends ever since. I love it. And hey, if I can do it, anybody can do it. You have to make a little bit of time. It’s a good reason to go on a vacation where you don’t think about your business, but about yourself in terms of the business. It’s a little different. I’ve found it fun and exciting. You have to make it part of your day. It’s like doing cold call sales. Nobody likes to do it. But, at one point, when things aren’t moving, you just have to go and do it. You have to make time.

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Thanks so much for joining us today. Next time, we’ll wrap up our conversation about John. We’ll discuss social media marketing tips. Please join us! Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
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Relationships and the Dog Eat Dog World

dog_daysThis is the third installment of our five-part Dog Days series. Today we want to talk about relationships. There’s that old saying, “It’s a dog eat dog world.

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It reminds us of this exchange on Cheers:

Woody: "How's it going Mr. Peterson?"
Norm: "It's a dog eat dog world, Woody, and I'm wearing Milk Bone underwear.”

Dog eat dog is a zero-sum mindset. In order for you to win, the other party has to lose. There may have been times when this mindset worked. If you were in a large city or you sold nationally or worldwide, you may have been able to get away with it.

But the world is getting smaller and smaller.

Man’s best friend

Thanks to the internet, more people are connected with more people. Reputations can be built or destroyed pretty quickly. So it really pays to think win – win.

Be man’s best friend. Build loyalty by being trustworthy. Win friends by being loveable.

Those attitudes win alliances today. Your network is the single biggest asset you can have. The value of your network is the sum total of the value of each and every relationship in it.

Call the dogs off

You build value in relationships by giving. So call the dogs off.

You’re seeing this so much now as more and more people start using new tools like Twitter. They follow you; you follow them back. Then you’re immediately greeted with an auto-generated sales pitch.

As we’ve said before, the problem is they’re not seeing people. They only see dollar signs, but the dollars don’t materialize because people are turned off by the initial communication.

Of course, you can be too laid back in your networking efforts. You have to think highly enough of yourself, and what you do, to promote yourself. If you don’t, why should anyone else promote you?

Find the balance between too passive and too aggressive.

“His bark is worse than his bite”

We’ve all probably heard these famous words uttered by a dog owner. Perhaps you’ve said them yourself.

Is it a problem if we as humans exhibit this behavior as well?

Of course it is! Because we lose credibility if that’s the case.

When you choose to elevate a discussion, you have to be ready to back up your words with actions.

Barking and biting can be tools if they are used carefully. If they aren’t, they’ll come back to bite you (pun intended)!

If you never bark or bite, people may think they can steamroll right over you. On the other hand, you can use these tools too much. Then people avoid you or just brush off the dialog without really listening. They also lose respect for you.

So it’s okay to bark, if you bark occasionally. When you do it occasionally, it makes the communication stand out.

And it’s okay to bite … if you rarely do it. Sometimes you have to confront an aggressor head on. It puts teeth into your words.

Relationships. It’s hard to fully quantify them. They don’t show up on your Balance Sheet. But nonetheless, they are the single biggest asset you have. So build relationships for your bigg success!

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Thank you so much for reading our post today.

Occasionally, no matter how hard you try, you find yourself in the dog house. Please join us next time when we’ll talk about how to get out. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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How to Chase Away Your Website Visitors

running_awayMost businesses and non-profit organizations have a web site by now. Good thing since more and more people are searching online for services instead of using the phone book.

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There’s a lot of advice about how your website should look. It’s important to pause to realize …

It's the experience that counts the most!

Just like in the bricks-and-mortar world, people value the experience.

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marylynnI've had two bad user experiences recently. The first one has to do with a local not-for-profit organization for which I volunteer. I produce the audio for the radio and television commercials that promote the event. The commercials mention a web address to get more information. However, that address takes you to the organization's national website. I spent ten minutes trying to find the page with information about our local event.

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george If memory serves, Mary-Lynn, you told me that you saw a link, “Find your local event.” But it directed you to sign up or log in to get more information.

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marylynnRight! It’s crazy. I shouldn't have to sign up to simply get information. Regardless, I finally recovered my user name and password. Then I logged in, but I still haven't found the local page. I ran out of time and will have to go back.

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george People who aren’t as invested as you probably wouldn’t put that much effort into finding the local information. Worse yet, they may never go back to the site.

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Tip #1: Create a landing page specific for what you are promoting.

Make it easy for people to find the information they want. For example, our local branch could have a page that ends with the name of our city. They could set up an address like this: nameoforganization.com/champaign.

That's a landing page. It’s the address you want to promote to people in your area for information about your local organization – especially when you’re using local TV, radio, or the newspaper.

Here's another example for a business: If you are promoting a deal, use a web address like one of these:

yourbusinessname.com/deal

yourbusinessname.com/summersale

Create your landing page in advance. It can reiterate the most important points of your advertisement and provide more information. Also provide links to your home page and any other pages that people interested in this promotion might find useful.

Integrating your offline marketing with online marketing makes all your marketing more productive. It’s a time-tested strategy. If visitors to your site get the information they want quickly, they’ll be more likely to take the time to visit other areas of your site.

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marylynnThe second bad experience occurred when I read an article online about a local tech series that is free and open to the public. The article was on our local newspaper's website. It gave details on the upcoming session and offered a link to the organization's website to get more information on all of the sessions in the series.

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george So you went to the website to find out more information, and I remember hearing a … how should I describe it … a frustrated sigh coming from you.

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marylynnThat’s a good way to say it. I was frustrated because I couldn't find anything about the series. I clicked on several page links, including their events link. Nothing. I used their search tool to search for the name of the event. Still nothing. Finally I went to their calendar and typed in the exact date. The first session in the series came up. It contained the same information that was in the article. Nothing further about the entire series. I was planning to put all of the dates on my calendar. I guess I’ll have to call them.

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Tip #2: Make it easy to find the information you promote.

If you want people to know about your events, make it easy to get that information. Especially if your event is getting press!

Create a page like we suggested above. If you prefer to link people to your home page, create a link and highlight it so people can find it quickly and easily. For example, in the case we mentioned above, you could highlight it this way:

"Tech series starting in August"

Make it very visible on your site. When people click on that link, it will take them to the page you've created with all the information about that event.

Your site is an excellent tool to compliment your other marketing efforts. But if you don't make it easy for people to find what you’re promoting, they won't participate in your sale or event.

Prepare your web site for visitors before you advertise or send out a press release. That will help make your campaign a bigg success!

Do you have any tips from your bad user experiences? Or maybe a good experience combining your web site with traditional media? Share that with us by leaving a comment below, calling us at 888.455.BIGG (2444) or e-mailing us at bigginfo@biggsuccess.com.

Thanks so much for reading our post today. Please join us next time when we’ll discuss artificial dissemination. Yes, you read that right! Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

Subscribe to The Bigg Success Show in iTunes. 

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Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00442-072109.mp3

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