Check out my latest speaker reel and preview video on my High Performance Keynote Make It Happen Blueprint. Based on my book by the same title, this keynote focuses on how leaders can inspire high performance and productivity in their teams through communication, resilience training and creating a culture of progress and success.
Is GROWING Your Paycheck On Your 2020 Goal List?
In the twelve years that I have been working with marketing teams small business owners all over the world, I’ve seen a tragic statistic unfold right before my eyes: 50% of businesses fail in the first five years. Sad and true all at the same time.
Another thing I’ve noticed is that the businesses that are committed to a marketing plan and willing to change with the trends often succeed a lot faster than those who try to apply old school marketing tactics year over year. Don’t get me wrong, traditional advertising still works when done strategically, but you can’t ignore online and social media any longer. Here’s a list of three more of the biggest mistakes small businesses make in marketing.
Mistake #1 They don’t have a plan. As I say to my clients, “P-L-A-N is the four letter word for success!” Take time to write out your strategy for 2020, even if it’s just sticky notes on your wall. However, if you can give it a little more time, you might see greater results. Schedule some time in the next couple of weeks to create a strategy for next year, so that after the holidays are over, you’re ready to hit the ground running. I have a resource for this: learn more.
Mistake #2 They wait for everything to be perfect. I hate to see businesses who aren’t marketing because they’re waiting for the perfect logo, or the website to be updated for the 900th time, or they need to get more feedback from friends before they feel like they can more forward. I’m not suggesting you put out half baked ideas on a regular basis, but identify where perfectionism is paralyzing your business. Get some feedback, make some changes and then LAUNCH, don’t wait. It will never be perfect. ALL businesses and ALL marketing is a work in progress.
Mistake #3 They aren’t consistent. Do you want regular paychecks? Then WHY do you do sporadic marketing? I see too many small businesses who run campaigns when they need the money, but then they don’t have money so they don’t market effectively. Marketing is fuel for your business. It’s like food for the body. You wouldn’t survive on sporadic meals- a month here and a month there, your body needs regular nutrition. Your business needs regular marketing. When you’re creating your 2020 plan, make sure you include regular marketing efforts for regular results.
Mistake #4 Their target market is too broad. It sounds like generic marketing advice, but this year, more than ever we’ve been helping our clients create narrow focused niches and their sales are skyrocketing. If you want better results narrow your marketing and start sharing better messages that meet their needs.
If you’d like help creating your 2020 marketing plan, I have an event coming up November 21 & 22. You can join via LIVESTREAM from anywhere in the world. If you can give me two days, you’ll have a greater understanding of the latest marketing trends AND you’ll have a marketing plan for 2020. This is the seventh year I’ve done this event and each year it gets better, and each year we cover trends that can’t be missed. I’ve created this event to be VERY hands on. The activities we complete in those two days walk you through everything from niching your target market, to choosing your marketing outlets to creating a marketing budget, to connecting your audience on social media AND I show you how to track and measure your results. I only host this event once a year, so don’t miss it!
47 Tips To Be A Better Boss
As you all know I speak frequently on leadership. As I was preparing to speak a few months ago I reached out on social media to ask people what tips they had for being a better boss. All of the responses I received were great and I thought that I would pass them along to you.
Michele Vercimak Set clear expectations with established timelines.
Kenna Vallejos Listen and acknowledge “good ideas”. This doesn’t mean all are implemented it does however build productivity and connection.
Breaelle Eddington I like a direct boss. Some one that can gives me constructive criticism on how to be better at my job.
Kami Orange Find out how people like to be acknowledged. Some people really love to be applauded in front of the whole office. Some people really love an email saying they did a great job that they can print off and keep forever. Some people like more time off and perks.
Just because you like a particular type of acknowledgment does not mean the people that work for you also like that type of acknowledgment. They might actually dislike the exact same kind of acknowledgment that you personally prefer.
If you really want to acknowledge people for doing a great job, find out what is meaningful for them and do that as much as possible.
Jeri Mae Rowley I want my boss to take good care of themselves–take a lunch break, exercise, go home to their family, laugh, ask for help, gather a good support group. Bosses burn out and singe the whole organization.
Ashlee Houghton Listen to the employees!!!
Jocelyn Harris Listen to your employees and not just think you have all the answers.
Heather Heslington Snyder Lead by example. Be the type of professional your subordinates will want to model themselves after.
Linda Joy Slagowski Not threatening emails with consequences if things don’t get done. Owning their limitations & mistakes. No favorites
Hollie Case Baxter Know how to do the job of the people you are in charge of.
Julie Phillips Shepherd Listen to employees and take appropriate action when necessary.
Kirsten Klug Trust. Don’t stand over my shoulder to watch me work
April Saunders Anderton Learn about different personality or energy types and recognize specific traits in your employees. Use that knowledge to assign tasks and to manage and motivate your employees.
Amberly Moon Kariuki Don’t ask for ideas or suggestions if you already know what you’re going to do and are not really open to ideas.
Jennifer Bottema Hinton I have always worked for small business owners. Do not complain about how tight money is or the lack of it (therefore eliminating employee raises an bonuses) and then spend excessively on personal life style. It destroys employee morale. If you want to spend on you, you earned it, but do not minimize your employee’s contributions by saying you are financially strapped/struggling.
Debra E Andrew Reward for great ideas, don’t just steal them as your own and keep the profits for yourself. Give room for growth, advancement, and pay increases. Don’t expect 5 times work for the same pay. If you add to responsibilities increase pay.
Whitney Lee Geertsen My advice is provide at least some training, listen to employees especially when they have particular skill sets, hire and accommodate disabled workers, and provide safety equipment and protocols for work hazards.
My first job in a seasonal grounds maintenance crew, I was dropped off alone at the cemetery and told to make it look pretty. All I had were hand tools and it wasn’t until halfway through was I shown were more efficient tools were. The third year same city different boss I had no tools (they would disappear over winter) and broke my own shovel. In horticulture, I knew more than my boss, but he was there because of his knowledge of sprinkling and lawn maintenance. During my three years, I had little help and was placed in charge of 40+ flower beds. I was inadequately trained and equipped for herbicide application.
(Note: I am autistic and struggle getting work. After my time with the city I developed a barrage of health problems. )
KyAnn Betz As an executive level leader with hundreds of employees here are mine:
1. No favorites, love them all and treat them all the same
2. Have a clear escalation plan, my employees know when and how to ask for my help, they are all amazing but even Superman needs the Justice League occasionally
3. Have a written employee handbook that covers roles, responsibilities, code of conduct, and expectations, make sure it’s on everyone’s desk
4. When there is praise it’s them, when there is punishment it’s me, I am ultimately accountable for everything and everyone
5. Don’t hire a watchdog and then do the barking yourself, this makes me NUTS when leaders do this
6. Have a suggestion box and actually answer the suggestions or implement them. I message my employees in the bathrooms through a Restroom Reader that I write every 10 work days, I answer their suggestions and tell them what’s coming up. They LOVE the Restroom Reader, I’m hilarious and I give it to them straight.
7. Calm down, your demeanor and energy becomes infectious, I work in nuclear weapons so this might be more important in my job, calm down as a leader, think it through, my employees know it’s not the 9th inning unless I say it’s the 9th inning, if everything is a crisis, nothing is
8. Rewards don’t have to be big, each of my hundreds of employees gets a hand written birthday card from me, I give a ton of high fives, and I paint “You Rock!” on regular rocks and give them out
9. Don’t be afraid of crucial conversations, if someone needs to be disciplined or dealt with do it fast, sometimes with shock and awe, but don’t delay it, there’s a reason they call me The Kraken behind my back, I deal with it head on and while I’m not always nice, I’m fair and morale is high because I prune the non performers.
10. Leaders take care of yourselves, sleep, eat, use your vacation days, unplug on weekends
Cindee Leavitt Jessop Listen. Don’t just talk. Listen.
Janet Thaeler My pet peeve is when bosses call you into a meeting and it’s not normal timing so you feel like you’re in trouble. Also I had a boss give me a glowing performance review in person but turned in a different version that wasn’t as stellar. Didn’t love that. I always appreciate honest feedback, well delivered, even if it’s to improve something. It’s hurtful when you find out about negative feedback from another source. The thing I love is when a boss has my back and I know there’s mutual trust.
Patti Merrill Cook Always appreciate, people who are appreciated work harder. Be clear in directions and expectations. Offer flexible schedules when possible so people can work at their best pace.
Suzanne Mulet The kind that drive to make you feel so inadequate that you fall apart. They get the smug look, like, “Finally broke her. I win.” And then cry all the way home. #TrueStory
Tammy Joy Lane Don’t have it so the only time you talk to your people is when they are in trouble. Don’t micromanage, Do appreciate, Don’t be shady
Stacy Bernal Don’t send a text on Friday that reads: “We need to talk on Monday.” Thus ruining my entire weekend. (Actually, that’s not true– I was in Nashville with friends to run a half marathon so I didn’t LET it ruin my weekend. But still. Pretty D-bag move.)
Jolene Griffin Durrant Don’t ask your employees to do anything you wouldn’t do
Shauna Light Talking to others about me when I can hear them. Such passive aggressive communication. Blaming everything in the office on a fall guy.
Cindy DeHart Check in with your team individually regularly, listen, provide feedback, learn from each other. Team members that feel acknowledged and input is valued are better individual members of a team, and produce stronger workloads. Don’t use examples of anyone we know. Ha! That part is a joke!
Adrienne Thomas Acknowledgement is key.
Laura Jeffs Be able to communicate with your employees and handle conflict between them professionally. Know how to delegate!!
Tori Christensen Nathan has pretty awful bosses: don’t hover, don’t put off payday until you feel like saying, don’t schedule meetings Friday at 5pm because that way it isn’t taking up “work time.” Pay people fairly, not just according to what their degree is, but to how they serve the company. Don’t make salaried people punch in and out. And did I mention not hovering?
Laura Jeffs Don’t micromanage!
Tambra Puro West Don’t be a boss, be a leader. Get engaged with your employees and get to know them (echoing comments above about praise, rewards, work and personality types). Not everyone works the same and everyone has a life outside of work. Don’t over-react and jump to conclusions from hearsay. Try to get the full story before making changes or taking action.
Madeline Faiella Treat people as a team, with respect. Not as underlings. Life can change in an instant.💖💖💖
Becky Ruths Dont ask your employees to do something you are unwilling to do.
Julie C. Hatch Quit micro-managing.
Jentrey Potter See people as people. I’ve never worked in the corporate world but I’ve seen enough of what my husband has gone through and it’s sad how often they forget that they’re dealing with real humans.
Kim Kauffman Everybody wants to be somebody… Imagine that everyone has an invisible sign on their chest that says.. MAKE ME FEEL SPECIAL!! Recognition is important. The best bosses are the ones that love to give recognition.. no matter how big or small! People work hard when they feel appreciated!!
I was thrilled to be interviewed by Cindy Stagg on her podcast Lead Together.
I was asked about my experience as an attendee of the Girls State program and my involvement through the years. There’s no question that this program was life changing for me and no question that it certainly serves as a foundational part of my leadership opportunities over the years.
You can listen on iTunes or on her site here: https://www.
Thanks for having me Cindy!
This video interview was done a while back but there are still a few good gems in here.
You’ve probably heard the phrase “either you run the day or the day runs you.” And I wholeheartedly agree!
In this video I share a foundational principle to time management, something I learned the hard way!
I had the opportunity to go on KSL Brower 5.0 this week and discuss 4 tips to be a better boss.
A study done by Gallop showed that 75% of people have left a job because of a boss and not because of the job itself or even their paycheck. Below is a Q&A with Michelle about how to be a better boss.
Question: Can we really narrow it down to only four things? What would you say is number one?
Michelle: It will be tough, I conducted a little survey of my own on social media yesterday, but there were three main categories of boss pet peeves. First, train people well, then trust them to get the job done. There can be course correction along the way, but micromanagement was at the top of the list of boss pet peeves. Allow people some freedom to complete tasks and projects in their own way. At my peak I managed a team of 50 in 4 different departments. I didn’t have TIME to micromanage, but I had many managers who did. Focus on what needs to be done, not HOW.
Question: Management has changed over the years, how can a boss earn loyalty from an employee?
Michelle: It’s true, management has changed over the years. Even 20 years ago when I was studying business management in college we read articles and textbooks about managing people like a director and a cast of actors, but over the last 15 years there’s been a shift to leadership, making sure that you were someone worth following. In this day and age leadership isn’t enough. Collaboration is the wave of the future, so collaborate don’t dictate. Involve your team as MUCH as possible. Help them idea generate solutions problems and challenges. LISTEN and then listen some more. Explore ways that you can lead the individual and not the team as a whole and you’ll find loyalty from your people.
Question: There seems to be a focus now on building culture to help people stay in an organization, how much of that does the boss need to champion.
Michelle: Culture is a HUGE corporate conversation today. But one thing employees crave the most is just honoring time and roles. Flexible time off is highly valued, not just from the millennial generation, but from everyone. If you offer time off, don’t discourage people from using it. ENCOURAGE and honor that time people spend away. Studies show people come back more committed, and they want to be championed in their other roles. Part of this conversation that is HUGE though is not texting, calling or emailing excessively while people are gone. Let them be truly “away” so it looks like you care about them. This is also importantly simply for after hours time. Allow parents time with their kids. Allow kids time with aging parents.
Question: Final question, it seems like employees are looking for more than a paycheck, what can a boss do when there is no more money to “keep” an employee.
Michelle: Many responders in my unofficial survey said appreciation was just as important to them if not more than the money they make. Public appreciation in front of peers and colleagues is especially appreciated. But take it up a notch…figure out how each employee loves to be appreciated. You’ll find that not only do they enjoy the praise, but they’ll work harder for you. Praise works above and below their paygrade. Make sure they get credit for the work they do!