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Meet Count Clockula

clock

We had some fun with sound effects on The Bigg Success Show today. You can read our summary here, but you might have more fun listening!

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With Halloween approaching, we felt we should warn you about a monster you may not know about. This monster lives off of your most precious resource – time. It’s downright frightening how much of our time can be wasted.

See if you can relate to any of these haunting situations:

Chatty co-worker

You’re working on that bigg project. You reach a point where you just seem stuck. Maybe getting away from your desk will help. So you get up to stretch your legs and grab a cup of coffee. You’re in the break room when that chatty co-worker walks in. Fifteen minutes later, you’re finally back at your desk.

You’ve been bitten by Count Clockula!

He lives off wasted time, sometimes using other people to feed his ravenous appetite.

E-mail alerts

You’re busy working at your computer. You see the alert that your friend just sent you an e-mail. You can’t resist. You have to see what it is. It’s a fun video. Well, you might as well watch it now. Wow, it’s funny. Better e-mail your friend. Five minutes later, you’re back to work.

Count Clockula got ya again!

He sucks your time away by tempting you with things that are appealing. They seem like more fun than the important things you need to work on.

Lost keys

You’re running late for work. You rush into the kitchen to get a cup of coffee for the road. You grab your laptop bag. Your keys! Where are your keys? You can’t find them anywhere. You look everywhere. Ten minutes later, you find them underneath yesterday’s mail.

Count Clockula strikes again!

By keeping you from paying attention to seemingly little things, he can suck away a lot of your time.

Misplaced files

You have a meeting in five minutes and you can’t find the file you need. Where did you put that file? Is it in this stack? No. How about this one? No. You keep looking. If you don’t find it soon, you’ll just have to go without it. Ah, there it is – at the bottom of that overflowing “In” box.

Closely related to the last issue, Count Clockula thrives on disorganization.

Meetings

You went to yet another meeting. The project leader was late. Then he didn’t keep the group on track. The conversation just floated from one issue to another without accomplishing anything.  

Count Clockula sinks his teeth in again. He thrives on dead time – where groups of people are completely unproductive. 

Media

You have a major report due in a couple of weeks. As you were doing some research for it, you found a great site full of information. You spent a lot of time there. Sure, it was still research, but it was more than you needed for the project.

Count Clockula flies again! Sometimes he overwhelms you with his charms.

Lack of focus

You don’t really have a sense of direction. Sure you think about your goals near the end of every year. But you don’t keep them in front of you like you should.

It’s the worst bite Count Clockula can deliver.

How can you allocate your most precious resource effectively if you don’t know what you’re trying to accomplish?

Word of warning

We’d be remiss if we didn’t warn you about one more thing. Unlike other vampires, Count Clockula doesn’t just come out at night – he’s out all the time. Beware!

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Next time, we’ll chat with Seth Godin about his fantastic new book, Tribes. 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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Are You Solving the Problem or Treating the Symptom?

diagnosis Picture yourself sitting in your doctor’s office. You feel terrible – so terrible that you finally went to get your doctor’s prognosis. Your doctor walks in, takes one look at you and tells you what’s wrong.

No questioning. No prodding. No poking. No cold stethoscope.

How much confidence would you have with your doctor’s diagnosis?

None at all, right?

Yet time and time again, we see this in the business world. Prescriptions are offered without a thorough diagnosis. So many times, we treat the symptoms of the problem, rather than solving the problem itself because we don’t take the time to discover the real problem.

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Ad hoc diagnosis cost this salesperson a client

We have a friend who sells television commercials. Recently, he told us about one of his new clients. This client had been running radio ads for his high-end grills. They didn’t work. So the radio salesperson put him on another station. That still didn’t work. So the guy switched to television.

Our friend produced a great ad showing people having fun around his client’s grills. Sales are booming! His client is thrilled!

But the radio salesperson missed an opportunity. By thoroughly diagnosing the situation, it could have been determined that the problem wasn’t the station, it was the message. Couldn’t you use sound effects to create a picture in the listeners mind? If you hear the sound of food on the grill, can you put yourself there? If you hear people having fun, do you want to join in?

The radio sales representative could have kept the client by thoroughly diagnosing the problem to come up with the right solution, instead of just trying something else (i.e. changing stations).

5 steps to diagnose the problem

With everybody looking for cost-effective solutions today, diagnostics are increasingly important. If you don’t get to the root of the problem when you prescribe a solution, you’ll damage relationships. So follow this simple five-step process to thoroughly diagnose the problem:

1. Ask probing questions

2. Listen
This is really part of the first step, but it’s so important that we felt it should be listed separately. Listen actively and attentively.

3. Clarify
Keep asking follow-up questions and making clarifying statements until you fully understand the issue. If your client offers a vague answer to your question, ask a question that digs deeper. Or repeat your client’s answer back in your own words. Now you’re ready to …

4. Define the problem

5. Offer the prescription
Now, and only now, are you ready to offer your solution to the underlying problem.

If you care about your clients, you will seek to build the relationship even if it’s not in your best interest today. Without question, it is in your best interest long-term.
 

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Next time, we’ll talk about tapping into your creativity this Halloween to have some bigg fun. 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/00249-102208.mp3

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The Natural Way to Save Money

You may especially enjoy listening to today’s show. We had some fun with sound effects throughout, most which can’t be translated to print!

"We recently saw a study that showed that nature-based recreation in the US has declined about 25% in the last 20 years, after increasing in the 50 years before that."

 

"So we did our show today in the middle of nature – we camped out! We recorded the show in front of a nice fire while we roasted marshmallows."

 

Nature comes with benefits

Studies have shown that being outdoors has some incredible health benefits. In fact, even just SEEING the outdoors is beneficial. A little while ago, we saw a study that showed that hospital patients with a window recover much faster from surgery than those without. Isn’t that amazing?

This same study cited numerous sources that showed that spending time outdoors can lower stress and decrease mental fatigue.

Born to be wild

We’ve been talking about the benefits of being outdoors. Now let’s look at what the outdoors can do for one specific group of people – kids.

This same study we mentioned earlier showed that kids who spend more time outside pay attention better and are less demanding. It’s even been shown to reduce symptoms of Attention Deficit – Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).

But going back to where we started, Americans are spending less time outdoors. Miracle-Gro, the garden fertilizer company, just conducted a survey. Nearly 70 percent of the parents who responded said their kids spend less time outdoors than they did when they were kids.

"My parents wouldn’t let my sister and me inside until it was dark. They wanted us to run off all that energy!"

 

"Now I know why Mary-Lynn brought me out here!"

   

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