The Greatest Showman

Question and Answer with Michelle Mccullough

 

 

 

 

The Greatest Showman pleased audiences across the country and hit a box office milestone: It’s the third-biggest live-action original musical ever behind Enchanted and La La Land (according to Forbes). While many people tout the positive storyline and catchy musical numbers, there are some lessons business owners can take from this biopic story.

On the blog today I am going to share three of my favorite business takeaways.

An obvious takeaway from the movie is to be passionate about pursuing your “million dreams”. Business owners can really glean some great thoughts from the movie. Dreams are awesome and I love how the movie talks about dreaming with your eyes wide open, but one of my favorite lessons from the story is that when the museum was a flop, he pivoted.  As the show grew, he added new acts to keep things fresh, one of the biggest challenges I see small businesses make is they enter the market one way and dig in their heels, but you need to be willing to innovate and grow and sometimes you have to let go of what you started to get where you really want to go.

Question:
They had to change, as it seems like there were a number of challenges faced in their business. The second tip I have for business that are facing challenges comes from one of my favorite lines in the movie. “We don’t need a building.”  I love the idea that they didn’t have to do it the way everyone else was doing it, or the way they “thought” it should be.  Barnum’s idea to buy cheap property and use a tent is a great example of thinking outside the box.  Small business owners need to be willing to do things a different way if they want to stand out.

The final message from Greatest Showman is my favorite, in the song, “Greatest Show” they sing, “Everything you ever want, everything you ever need, is here right in front of you.” THIS is what I tell all of my clients.  You can have “A Million Dreams” but truly everything you want you already have.  Don’t assume a rocking business, or even an awesome goal or success can fill some kind of hole in your life.  Everything you want you already have.  Everything you need to be successful in business is within you already.  This story is a classic tale, one we’ve heard from many successful and famous business owners, that they sacrificed their families for their careers, don’t let that be so.  I truly believe you can grow a thriving business without having a meaningful personal life. Don’t wait until you crash to figure this out.

Podcasts

Question and Answer with Michelle Mccullogh

 

Audioblogging goes back to the 1980s, but podcasting became more common place over 14 years ago in 2004.  In 2018 48 Million people listen to podcasts weekly, so is there a way for your business to leverage podcasting as a marketing tool?
Today’s blog will be all about how podcasting can help businesses use conversations as part of their marketing strategy.

There have been quite a few frequently asked questions about podcasts. Today I would like to share with you a few of the questions along with the answers.

Question #1: Is podcasting dying out or picking up steam?
I’ve been podcasting since 2013 and I thought it would die out over time, but we’re just seeing our listenership increase, even though there is increased competition.  Studies are showing that downloads are increasing and show no signs of decline, even with the rise of social video.  People listen to podcasts when they multitask so it fills a unique void at home doing mundane housework, on the commute to work and also running errands or at the gym

Question #2:  Why should a business consider podcasting as part of their marketing?
Podcasting let’s to you tell more of a story.  Podcasts should be sales shows, you won’t get listeners, but a podcast can be used to establish expertise.  Authors and speakers use podcasts to share thought leadership, but even brick and mortar businesses can use podcasts to share a unique angle and extend the customer experience.  A salon could have a podcast on inner and outer beauty, an auto mechanic could have a podcast on car care or even purchasing the right car, etc.

Question #3: Beyond extending the story and creating content, how can businesses leverage podcasts in other ways?
Podcasts are great for building partnerships and sharing audiences.  Interviewing other people in your industry or complementary industries can be a great way to cross audiences and grow your market.  I have a friend who is a marketing consultant and he interviews marketers from top companies about how Marketing Builds Trust.  He’s leveraging their expertise and connections and as that individual and organization shares the podcast, Adam reaches a bigger audience.  Podcasting can be a great partnership tool.

Question #4:  What thoughts you can offer a business who may want to dive into podcasting?
Don’t wait, dive in.  Marketing in the digital era is about sharing content that is both relevant and searchable.  Podcasts are consumed and shared, but they create a marketing asset that you can use year over year.  Think of podcasting like building your arsenal of marketing resources.  Audios can be transcribed and then turned into blog posts, social media shares and more.

Most Valuable Employee

Question and Answer Series with Michelle Mccullough

 

 

 

Many employees go to work every day in fear that they may lose their jobs.  With the many responsibilities to provide for families, pay off debt and save for the future there is a lot on the line to maintaining stable employment.
Today the blog features four ways that you can be the most valuable employee in your organization.

We are going to tackle this topic today in the form of Q&A. Let’s get right to it.
Question #1: What is your first tip for being an invaluable employee?

Michelle: Number one is, to have a good attitude – even if things are bad.  Complainers are toxic to a team, a department and a company as a whole.  If you have complaints, voice them privately and don’t go cubicle to cubicle recruiting allies.  Complain in private and compliment in public.  Studies show that all qualifications being equal, managers will promote those with the best attitude and that are the easiest to work with.

Question #2: What if things in the organization need a lot of improvement, how do you avoid being negative?

Michelle: Be a problem solver.  There can be a lot of reasons to complain, but if you can find solutions and not problems, you’ll be seen as a team player and an invaluable employee.  When I’m hiring, I will hire first temporarily before I bring people on part or full time.  I’ll give them a project, and if or when there’s a problem I look to see how they solve it, or how their attitude effects the work environment.

Question #3: Do you like employees that come up with solutions and do them without being asked?

Michelle: Absolutely.  Sure, there are times where someone can overstep their job position or take a responsibility that should be done by someone else, generally speaking I’m looking for employees that are proactive and not reactive.  In addition to being a problem solver, I want them to see problems BEFORE they happen and be willing to make changes or adjustments to smoothing things out ahead of time.  That said, questions are not a sign of weakness.  If you have something you don’t understand or need more clarity on to proceed, don’t waste time (Yours or the company’s)  Ask for help so that you can be effective and efficient.

Question #3: What is your final tip for people who want to be rockstar employees?

Michelle: Go the extra mile.  It sounds cliché, but this simple task can make you invaluable in an organization.  I’m not saying you have to work late every night and burn a candle at both ends, but ask yourself, “What MORE could I do that would benefit my boss, team or organization?”  And then do it.  I love the quote by Dan Clark that says, “You aren’t paid by the hour, you’re paid for the value you bring to that hour.”  How can you increase your value at work?

Empowering Women in the Work Place

KSL Segment 5.0

 

 

Corporate cultures are adjusting to the unique needs of women in their workforce.  More companies are creating flexible time off polices and maternity leave programs. As a result, women are more likely to stay longer at organizations with a culture that’s flexible to the demands of women who wear many hats.  Now, organizations are looking to find ways to train, empower, develop and mentor women to be better prepared for advancement opportunities.

The blog today is all about four ways companies can empower and develop the women in their organizations.

Let’s start with the why. Why should an organization create initiatives that foster personal development for women?
Advanced education and on the job training can help employees learn important skills that will help them excel in their individual jobs, but if there isn’t a foundation of clarity, high performance and productivity then advancement and job development is actually stifled.  A few months ago google released an article sharing that they’ve studied the trends, habits and effects of their personal development programs and discovered that soft skills were actually more valuable than job specific training.

Organizations do have very limited budgets. I have a couple suggestions on how they can still get started on this initiative.  Two ideas here, first, allow 2 hours a week paid for personal development time.  This can be spent in reading books (chosen or assigned by the organization), watching topic specific videos, etc.  The second idea is to develop internal mentoring programs.  Pair up senior level leadership with employees you want to develop for advancement and allow an hour a week for in person meetings to set goals, talk through job descriptions, etc.

What about the opposite side of the spectrum. What about the companies that are ready to take it to the next level and allocate budget for personal development. I have two ideas here as well.  First, I recommend developing internal women’s groups.  Many corporations, especially in technology companies have a “Women in Tech” group.  They have budget for monthly lunch and learns where they can bring in outside speakers, discuss books, or even just connect women across various departments.  Women who are part of these groups share a sense of belonging and connection.  They also feel like they have a support group to cheer them on when advancement opportunities come.
For example, 38% of Women in tech jobs leave within 7 years, but THEY KEEP WORKING, but not in tech. They cite “culture and lack of connection” as their reason for leaving.

Second, I recommend carving out budget for outside training programs.  We hear story after story of companies investing in women to get high performance leadership training and then come back and share what they’ve learned with others in the group.  It can be VERY effective and helps to bring in expertise that may not exist in the organization.

 

 

What are the Do’s and don’ts of Handling Stress?

Question and Answer Series with Michelle Mccullough

 

A study done by the American Psychological association found that 48% of respondents noted that they feel like their stress has increased over the last five years. With the everyday roles and responsibilities on our plates every day, it’s no wonder we’re stressed and overwhelmed.

Stress is a big problem for a lot of us today. I narrowed down how to deal with stress by compiling a simple do’s and don’t list. Today’s blog topic will best be discussed through a series of questions and answers. Let’s jump right in to the first one.

Question #1 : When you’re stressed, what’s on your Don’t List?

Michelle: Number one hopefully happens before you get stressed. Don’t Over-Schedule Yourself. Some of our stress is self Imposed, make sure you give time in your schedule for relaxation, sleep, etc.

Question #2: Some of that sounds easier said than done. What’s on your DO list to help people in stressful times?

Michelle: Focus on the present. There may be a lot of challenges in the future, but the present is all that is in our control. We need to spend more time focusing on what we can control and let the future come what may. The old adage that worry is like a rocking chair, it gives you something to do but doesn’t get you anywhere, is true. Spend your time thinking about the things in your control.

Question #3: Many of us have taxing jobs and a lot of personal responsibilities what would you recommend that we do first?

Michelle: Ask for help. The demands we have on our lives AND the worry combined are a lot so we need to not do it alone. Whether you’re a CEO or a stay at home parent we all need help with our responsibilities. So whether it’s hiring good help or trading with friends – not only does it lift a burden, but it helps us remember that we’re not alone. Community and solidarity are great antidotes to stress.

Question #4: What would be your final tip for to de-stress?

Michelle: Create a “Play List” . In my book The Make It Happen Blueprint, one of the ways we tackle the feeling of being overwhelmed is through things that bring us joy. It can be making time for a hobby, reading a good book, or even learning something new. I recommend to corporate clients and high performance individuals to make sure they do something every day that takes their mind off the stress and also helps them develop personally with things they enjoy.

How To Communicate Better At Work

Make It Happen Video Series

Have you subscribed to my YouTube channel? Be the first to get my latest videos. More to come!

https://www.youtube.com/user/SpeakMichelle

Change is the one constant at work. If you’re a boss, how can you communicate company changes in a way that motivates and improves the company culture? If you’re an employee and you need a raise or a change in your work job description, how can you ask without hurting your position? Enter the four part enrollment process I created to help professionals communicate better when asking for something. In this video I share the four steps to have more positive conversations. (BONUS: this four step process also works with spouses, kids and friends, too!)

For more information about Michelle and booking her to speak go to: http://www.speakmichelle.com Subscribe to hear about new videos when they’re released.

Increasing Your Productivity- Three Tips to Help You Get More Done!

KSL Browser 5.0 Segment

It seems like to do lists grow, but time does not. In this segment I share three productivity tips, though we could have talked about distractions the whole time! That’s tip number one: eliminate distractions. Watch this short clip for the other two!

As always, we had fun in the studio! Thanks for having me KSL!

Motivation and Success Strategies Video Segment

Michelle is Interviewed on Park City TV

It was an honor to be invited to Park City TV. We discussed my book The Make It Happen Blueprint, talked about motivation and success strategies and even talked about the National Speakers Association Mountain West Chapter.