Business

Read Your Audience

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I came across something interesting that i’d like to share with you. I was listening to the late Jim Rohn, a life coach and succesful businessman. He was talking about how to read your prospect’s or audience’s body language, so that you can be more effective at delivering your speech and to understand their needs. Remember, a prospect is not as interested in what you have to offer than what you can do for them. They are looking for a SOLUTION. So, if you want to improve your growth, here are a few things to consider:

  1. How would you talk to a child? Would you use complex sentences or words that they understand at their level? Also, would you change your tone to come down to their level or speak to them as you would an executive of Coca Cola?
  2. When talking to a prospect or an audience, note the effect you are having on them at that given moment. If what you are saying does not make sense to them do not carry on. Rather, think of how you can communicate to them what you want to say in simpler terms.
  3. Stop going through your notes and engage with your audience. Should you slow down, should you speed up? Read what is happening to your audience.
  4. Read what you SEE. If you are a sales person and the customer is frowning and folding his arms, that person is probably going to need more skill to convince. Make that person a little more comfortable, try to change the situation.
  5. Read what you hear. LISTEN twice as much as you talk so that you can know HOW to proceed.
  6. Pick up the EMOTIONAL signals – are you coming on too strong? Should you be easier?

This is an art and it takes a lot of practice, but it also takes personal development on your side. Over the past two years I have written a lot of material that can help you in different areas of your life so go through old posts and I will be happy to help you more on your journey to success! Also if you enjoyed this article and what more self-development material, sign up to receive these posts into inbox as soon as they are posted!

Until next time.. be blessed.

Image taken from http://www.sumsolutions.com 

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A real picture of success

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Feeling upset because I felt like my efforts in the pursuit of my dream were not enough, I felt rather bitter and starting complaining to my friend. In a very firm, but loving manner he told me that actually, what I am busy doing is a real picture of success.

This is what I learned and what I want to teach you today. By the time you can purchase your dream house, car and just about anything else, at those moments you will be showing the FRUIT of your success. A successful person is one who knows that they already are and as a result, takes action to accomplish their desired results. It is that simple.

Sometimes we become so entangled in our dreams that we compare ourselves to others who are already accomplished. We forget that we too have a journey to walk. We then become restless, impatient and annoyed. Anything that is of real worth and virtue will TAKE TIME. Remember that your destiny has to leave a LEGACY. Building a legacy takes time, effort and diligence. Of course you can retire young and rich – it is not impossible. Yet you must know that for certain goals the process may take a little longer but while you are waiting your character is being refined, you are learning new things and you will reach your goal. Just give it time and patience. And be encouraged by the fact that even if nobody is watching, even if nobody is clapping their hands, even if nobody seems to care… you will come out on top. What you see now is going to change. Things never remain the same. That is why it is important to realise that as you are now, you are a success story. Keep your mind focused on that and build your life and your principles on that mentality.

Please do not give up. Do not settle for less. Do not allow anyone to tell you otherwise. You are wonderful, beautiful and God has an amazing future for you. Keep on practising and taking steps towards your goals because you are SUCCESFUL.

Image taken from: asianweek.com

7 Deadly Sins of Leadership

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Continuing with the leadership series from Succeed Magazine, inspired by Steven Covey’s Principle – centered leadership, we will discuss some of the worst tactics that leaders can pull and how to clear communication lines. As promised, here they are:

THE 7 DEADLY SINS OF LEADERSHIP

1. WEALTH WITHOUT WORK: This implies manipulation, by getting something without nothing.

2. PLEASURE WITHOUT CONSCIENCE: Learn to give and take, to live selflessly, be sensible, and considerate. Be responsible and account in pleasurable activities.

3. KNOWLEDGE WITHOUT CHARACTER: This is internally dangerous and negative.

4. COMMERCE WITHOUT MORALITY: Business without ethics creates an immoral environment. Stewardship and fairness should underlie every ethical business transaction.

5. SCIENCE WITHOUT HUMANITY: Remember the higher purposes your technology is striving to serve.

6. RELIGION WITHOUT SACRIFICE: Sacrifice self to serve other.

7. POLITICS WITHOUT POWER: With no guiding principle, there is no direction. The key to a healthy society is to get a value system aligned with correct, natural principles.

PRINCIPLE-CENTERED POWER

When followers believe, trust and respect the leader, the team will follow him/her because they want to. This is a rare mark of quality, distinction and excellence in relationships and it encourages ethical behaviour and self-control. Power must always be used with patience, gentleness, acceptance, kindness, openness and integrity.

CLEARING COMMUNICATION LINES

Communication lines are clear with open perception and credibility. When ready for change, the leader must make sure that the team is prepared. Encourage understanding. Words must be chosen carefully, especially in strained relationships. One-on-one communication is very important. Improving your interpersonal behaviour enables you to listen deeply and effectively, without using emotion. Use your heart and eyes to listen; this is more powerful and motivational. Then you must use your logic, by listening with your ears. Use sympathy, by understanding how others feel, and empathy, by staying open during communication and open to being influenced. Effective communication is built on trust and trustworthiness.

Information from succeed Botswana Magazine, derived from Steve Covey’s Principle-Centered leadership, published by Simon & Schuster

Core Principles Of A Leader

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If you want to own a business or just become a leader in your field of interest, I have great information that will guide you as you develop your leadership skills. I read a magazine called “Succeed Botswana” – it is an entrepeneur’s best friend – I suggest you purchase it if you live in Botswana. It only costs P20.

In the March 2011 edition, came an insightful booklet talking about leading and motivating your team. We will discuss principled leadership, taken from Steven Covey’s Principle-centered leadership.

The principle centered leadership approach depends on four interdependent dimensions:

1. Security: Your sense of worth, identity and self-esteem.

2. Guidance: Direction received in life, governing decision-making and doing.

3. Wisdom: Your judgement, comprehension and integrated wholeness.

4. Power: Your capacity to act, courage to accomplish and energy to make choices.

According to Covey, your principles must be the centre of these four dimensions and govern them, so you must practise the following from the inside out:

1. Trustworthiness at a personal level comes when character (what you can do) are present.

2. Trust at an interpersonal level: Trust is an emotional bond between people and creates win-win situations.

3. Empowerment at a managerial level: Don’t supervise, rather, be a source of help in the attainment of succesful results by your team.

4. Alignment at organisational level results in a flat, flexible company structure with an aligned strategy and systems.

A principled-centered leader continually learns, reads and asks questions. Be service-oriented and see life as a mission, always serve, help and think of others. If you read the books of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, you will see that Jesus was a principle-centered leader, and that he embodied all the above qualities. That is why His Ministry was and still is succesful and influential today. We can learn a lot about leadership by just reading the New Testament and getting to know Him. Be positive, happy and optimistic to attract positive people and sidestep negative people. Believe in other people’s potential and do not hold grudges.  The three character traits evident in principle leadership are:

1. Integrity: Valuing yourself by developing self-awareness.

2. Maturity: Striking a balance between courage and consideration.

3. Abundance mentality: Believing there is enough for everybody, which flows from your sense of personal worth and security.

The process takes time, patience, understanding and trust. Personal growth is a process with no shortcuts and every person is at a different stage. Look inside to understand your weaknesses and build the strength to overcome them. I would add in that you must include God by praying about your weaknesses because the Bible says that He is our strength in our weaknesses.

I am sure that this article has helped you. In the next edition we will look at communication lines and Covey’s 7 Deadly Sins.

Information: Core Principles of a strong leader by Succeed Magazine, March 2011. Principles derived from Steven Covey’s Principle -centered leadership, published by Simon & Schuster.

START NOW

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Yesterday my friend and I were playing at a park, just like children do and since we both want to drive Aston Martins we agreed that we would get one another an expensive gift after we both purchase the beautiful cars. And of course in true competitive style, we agreed to compete to see who would first make the purchase.

Whilst we were brainstorming on great ways to make money in Botswana, I realised something. Here I was talking about the same thing I said last year. So since I have my idea already, what am I waiting for? There seems to be this attitude in Botswana that says, “I will do it later. I am still an employee. I do not have enough time right now.”

All that is rubbish and if ever you are going to succeed at anything you need to start now. I envision what my future holds and I have been doing enough preparation to start now. Of course I will use wisdom and discretion but it is time to start NOW. Anything that you have been putting off… you need to go back and start NOW. Do not allow procrastination to weigh you down. If you want to quit a bad habit, start NOW. If you want to lose weight, start NOW. If you want to start your business, start NOW. Start by reading useful material, talking to successful people and conducting market research on the product or service offering you wish to make public.

TIME WAITS FOR NO MAN. YOU NEED TO START NOW

Ezahlady meets Something Sweet By The Gypsiie Fairy™

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Ezahlady: Hello Tebogo. Thank you very much for this interview. Something Sweet By The Gypsiie Fairy™ is quite an interesting name. Please tell the Ezahlady readers about your company.
Tebogo: Hello Ezahlady. First i’d like to congratulate you on your blog. I follow it and I think you are doing an amazing job!
Sweet Tooth is the name of my Facebook page for my newly established business called Something Sweet By The Gypsiie Fairy™

Ezahlady: You are all about confectionery. What sort of products do you bake?
Tebogo: Yes i am all about confectionery. I have a variety of baked goods which are categorized as follows:

“My Yummy Obsession” – inspired by Thembile Legwaila. These are the softest cupcakes/muffins you’ve ever tasted! The cupcakes come in Red Velvet, Vanilla Mint and Chocolate Butter-cream.

“Irresistible Heaven Bites” – are a man’s favourite! Tantalise your taste buds with Double Fudge Brownies, Strawberry Shortcake and many more.

“Cookie Jar’s Best” – essentials in your cookie jar! Care for some Chocolate Chip Cookies? There is more where those come from, including ginger snaps and many other goodies.
I also bake cakes and all baking is done from scratch, without any pre-mixed ingredients.

 Ezahlady: Sounds delicious! You are still an undergraduate student. Care to tell us what you are studying?
Tebogo: Yes I am currently an Undergraduate student at the University of Botswana, reading for a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science & Public Administration.
 
Ezhalady: That is quite a contrast from your entrepreneurial idea. How do you think that what you are reading for will contribute to the success of your brand?
Tebogo: I believe that what I am reading for will help the success of my brand through the communication and public speaking skills I am currently learning and through networking. My father who is a diplomat, (what I aspire to become) and his colleagues love sweet goods with their tea. Imagine me helping to heal nations and bringing closer bonds with my baked goods!

Ezahlady: I can imagine! Do you have an office?
Tebogo: Currently the office for Something Sweet by the Gypsiie Fairy™ is my home which is in Gaborone West Phase 2. Since this business is fairly new, I decided to take baby steps and begin in the comfort of my home.
 
Ezahlady: Where do you see your business in the next 5 years?
Tebogo: In 5 years I see Something Sweet by the Gypsiie Fairy™ operating with its own bakery and progressing successfully.

Ezahlady: Many people try to bake – to their dismay! More cakes flop than spring. What are the most essential things people should know when attempting to bake a cake or muffins?
Tebogo: I am glad you asked this because it is very true, there are key ingredients that many bakers must be aware of:

There is the 4 parts of the Cookie; Cookie Strength, Cookie Texture, Cookie Height and Cookie Taste. They are all greatly influenced by the ingredients you use and even the different types of just one ingredient!

Cookie Strength

–Flour – All purpose flour is most often used in cookie recipes. Bread Flour will create a chewier cookie while replacing just a few table spoons of All-Purpose flour with cake flower will produce a more tender cookie

 Cookie Texture

–Butter  provides a medium “spread” and the best flavor. Butter helps cookies maintain their flavor, unless written otherwise use unsalted butter. To help the cookie made with butter to not spread too much freeze the dough before baking.

Cookies will be quite soft and not retain shape well if you use Vegetable Oil.

–Shortening (Crisco) creates a puffier more cake like cookie. Cookies made with stick margarine will be flat.

–White Sugar; creates a crisper cookie because it does not attract much moisture from the environment. To prevent cookies from cracking around the edges, use a superfine sugar. 

–Brown Sugar; cookies made with brown sugar will be more soft and chewy. Brown sugar will keep your cookies chewy longer

Cookie Height

–Baking Soda – when using baking soda it must be combined with an acid ( milk, chocolate, honey) to produce the reaction that will make your cookie rise. The reaction begins immediately upon mixing the ingredients so you need to bake recipes which call for baking soda immediately or else they will fall flat.

–Baking Powder; only needs moisture to be activated. Baking powder contains both an acid and a base and has no real affect on taste.

 Cookie Taste

–Cocoa – this ingredient can be added to any basic cookie/cake/muffin recipe to make a chocolate cookie/cake/muffin.

Remember when using any extract (e.g Vanilla essence) or flavoring, a little bit goes a LONG WAY!

 Ezahlady: If you could spend a day at any confectionery shop in the world, which would it be?
Tebogo: Definitely Something Sweet by the Gypsiie Fairy™  !! I already envision how prosperous it shall be and how my baked goods while be known throughout the whole city!  
 
Ezahlady: It is always good to believe in yourself. Could you tell the Ezahlady readers how much you charge for a tray of 6 cupcakes?
Tebogo: A tray of “My Yummy Obsession” cupcakes are at a value of P24.
  
Ezahlady: Do you think that Batswana women are good entrepreneurs and please give reasons to substantiate your answer?
Tebogo: I have not met a lot of female entrepreneurs in Botswana but I believe women can be excel in business because they have the drive, concentration and that 6th sense that ALWAYS provides us with knowledge.

 Ezahlady: So besides the sweet delicacies, what is Tebogo all about?
Tebogo: Tebogo is a young lady with dreams that are going to be fulfilled. Eclectic taste in music and fashion, a shoe and neon color addict. I enjoy spending time out with friends, cycling, yoga and my new found addiction are the CNN and BBC news channels. I try to be the best I can everyday and I wear a smile on my face despite the sorrows that are felt within.
 
Ezahlady: You are an inspiration to many young women. How can we get a hold of you, should we want to purchase an order?
Tebogo: If you would like to place an order you may contact me on my Facebook page Sweet Tooth or on my personal page www.facebook.com/outlule my mobile is +267 76121936 and my email address is tebogooutlule@yahoo.com
 
Ezahlady: Any favourite quotations:
Tebogo: You are what you eat; so eat Something Sweet by the Gypsiie Fairy™! 
 
Thank you very much for your time.

The Slight Edge

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Jeff Olson wrote an eye-opening book called ‘The Slight Edge’. You ought to read it.

It explains how people actually become succesful. There is no straight formula because what works for one person may be different for another. Of course there are sound strategies that need to be used in order for someone to get to their desired destination. However, I realised from reading this material that success is a journey and that it is the actions you do daily that will determine your outcome; for good or for evil.

Life is like a curve, not a straight line. So if you keep sowing good habits, you will reap good rewards. If you keep sowing bad habits, you will reap bad rewards. This pertains to all areas of your life. If you do not learn to invest your money well, you will live from paycheck to paycheck. If you learn to delay instant gratification and invest your money well, you will live with passive income for the rest of your life.

It is true. Think about it. Every action you take is compounded over time. Think about that. If you smoke, your lungs are not going to fail on you for the first week. Nor the next ten years. But granted, you keep puffing away for the next 15 to 20 years, you are going to get premature wrinkles. Your skin will grey. You hair will be limp. You will have bad breath. You will have breathing difficulties. Lung and throat cancer are most likely to develop in your body.

If you want to lose weight and you are at the gym 3 times a week but you still look like a sea lion posing on a rock, are you going to quit? You probably will if you are like 99% of people. If, however, you carried on for the next three months you will look like a flamingo posing in the Okavango Delta (Much better picture).

So what are your goals? Have you made any plans for this year? If not, I suggest you carefully think them out because you need to have something useful to do with your time. You cannot move through life hoping that situations will change. No, God is not going to drop money  from Heaven like Manna, nor will He support that bad habit of yours! You need to decide what it is you want out of life and begin doing it. With His help, you can!

It is easy to do the right thing and it easy not to. It is easy to start today and it is easy to start tomorrow (which never comes). The great thing about life is that each day brings with it the opportunity to start afresh, but when you delay certain things like practising good health and money principles, it will come at a huge cost a loss.

Please do not waste another minute of your life loafing about like Sponge Bob does. He is going to be frying crabby patties for the rest of his life unless he chooses to change direction. Again, this is very easy to do and very easy not to do. The scary thing about the Slight Edge is that it gives you exactly what you give out : it will either work for you or work against you.

Choose which way you want to go. Even God Himself told us about the importance of choice when He said in Deutoronomy 30:19-20, “This day I call Heaven and Earth as witness against you that I have set before you death and life, blessings and curses. Therefore choose life so that you and your children may live…”

Can you imagine, He set Heaven and Earth as witnesses against us? (lol) So you see that God tells us that the choices wemake will either bring death or life into our lives. Not only that, but our choices also affect our children’s lives… Read the whole scripture again. So what do you choose to do, dear lady? Remember that each action you take towards reaching that goal will compound over time and you will rach your fianl outcome.

Image take from: http://www.yoursuccessstore.com