Archive for July, 2010

Definition in a time when brown bags have, in some areas, replaced the iconic tiffany blue and hermes orange, green luxury can curb the guilt some affluent shoppers and travelers face when spending large

In a time when brown bags have, in some areas, replaced the iconic Tiffany blue and Hermes orange, green luxury can curb the guilt some affluent shoppers and travelers face when spending large. Some luxury brands are looking towards positive impact to overshadow many of the negative attitudes towards excessive spending. From hoteliers to iconic auto brands like BMW and Lexus to high-end eyewear, we will explore the many ways in which the luxury industry is adding a splash of green to their colors.

—Many luxury brands cannot ignore the emerging generation of eco-conscious shoppers. For many, green is the color of money and nature. Combination of the two is a powerful product that speaks to more than functionality, but to the sustainability of our future. Iconic brands are adding green to their company colors in an attempt to appeal to the eco-conscious buyer.
Green VS Guilt
—As luxury brands find new ways of enticing affluent buyers, a splash of green might be appealing for the customer that feels guilty for paying exorbitant amounts of money for one night in Singapore. Thinking the extra cost goes to the eco-accommodations, it is easier to spend the extra money.

Alila Hotels and Resorts—This Asian hotelier is using their low-impact properties as a selling point for affluent travelers. Their strategy is to sell their low-carbon footprint for those embarrassed to stay at luxury resorts. Their philosophy is that extra dollar goes towards the environment, not the luxurious atmosphere of the hotel.
ECOptical—Fusing luxury with sustainability to make repurposed eyewear…

To read more about positive impact and luxury, go to Sparxoo, a digital marketing, branding and business development blog.

My own style of management mandates that i only hire people who are better than me at what i am hiring them for

My own style of management mandates that I only hire people who are better than me at what I am hiring them for. Only weak executives/managers hire second rate candidates! They also tend to enjoy the mushroom style management, meaning to keep people in the dark and feed them S#!T. These execs fit perfectly into some of those large, inept enterprise bureaucracies that spend top-advertizing dollars to sell themselves as being perfectly efficient and effective at what they do. Only, that it is mostly no more than a marketing ploy.

Truly, what does being efficient and effective mean?

Efficient refers to doing something with the least amount of expendable energy/money! Correct? Well, to be honest a lazy person will be perfect in achieving that because he will think before wasting energy. Hmm, describes me pretty well. Give the same job to a non-lazy busybody and you get a lot of activity but the last thing you get is efficiency.

Efficient has a relative meaning. It has to mean ‘more efficient than other ways.’ Now what are the other ways? Who knows how efficient they are? I know a lot of efficiency experts (of the BPM kind mostly) who do nothing else than to come up with creative ways for business cases for relative efficiency improvements. Most of it is illusion and if true it is achieved by firing people. One persons idea of efficient – to take for example the car to save time – may be utterly inefficient for someone with an ecological perspective. Thus I would not see being efficient as a personal quality.

Being efficient without considering effectiveness is fairly inefficient and it is often difficult to combine the two from all perspectives. You might even see them as opposite sides of a coin. If you take the bicycle to the store rather than the car to save energy but you get there too late, you were not only ineffective but by all means also not efficient. So is being effective also therefore more efficient? No, because burning down the house would get rid of pest infestments, but so would the right dose of insectizide.

On the other hand, being effective requires that the goal has been clearly stated and is in some way measurable. Often the most effective thing is to reevaluate the goals, sometimes because of efficiency considerations. You have evaluate efficiency options to see if they are effective and possibly restate goals again. Is the goal to kill the insects or not to be pestered by them? Can I keep them out rather than kill. Can I get a deterrent (i.e. cat)?

The same line of thought applies to all questions of economy, ecology and business. Unfortunately, most people coming off universities with a great education have been brainwashed with a huge amount of ‘working procedures’ and ‘best practices’, ’standard methodologies’ and ‘research results’ that they think they need to try and understand what all the considerations around effectiveness and efficiency are. They apply ‘template 2711? because it has been effective in the past and try to squeeze everyone to doing it to the lowest possible cost. If it turns out to be effective (50% chance) and the price is lower than the first offer or how ‘template 2711? has been applied in other situations, that person is a genius! Possibly it is absolute nonsense, but who would know how to measure it?

In that busybodies-applying-templates lies the problem of governments, global enterprises, and any other typical bureaucracy. Putting lazy people in charge who are free to reevaluate goals to their ultimate purpose is the most efficient and effective way of management.

How do we find the right kind of lazy people?

Obviously we all look for certain character traits for particular positions. Remember the 80/20 Pareto Rule. 20 percent of people will do 80% of the important or profitable work. The problem is that you can’t fire the other 80% percent because the rule would still apply. The important part is to make sure that those 20% are the right people – I see them as the process owners. The very top 2% are the most important as those are your leaders and it is their character traits that define what your business is like. The executive’s job is to select those leaders and make sure they understand what you stand for. You do not need to have a clue how to do it yourself (it does help however). My experience tells me that you can neither classify those people nor put them in quadrants or look for efficiency or effectiveness – they just need to feel right and you need to try them out if they have a positive resonance with you. You can trust them and they feel respected and valued.

This is why being a great executive is a personality trait and not something you can be taught … you can maybe learn it through the school of hard knocks. Don’t tell me you are efficienct or effective, but tell me about those hard knocks, the stuff that you messed up and learned from. Do that, and you would be ‘my (wo)man’.

Ok, so you have started a business and you are all fired up and ready to go

Ok, so you have started a business and you are all fired up and ready to go! You have read all about the business, learned all the proper procedures, written out your goals and and all the plans that you have to build your business. So, why aren’t you getting anywhere?

You become frustrated and start thinking that the company is a scam because you have been in for a month and haven’t made any profits or gotten any recruits! But why are you REALLY not getting anywhere? Could it possibly be that you have taken every step you should except for the actual actions?

So many times you see people go full force into a business and they somehow believe that the business will grow and prosper just because they have put their mindset where it should be focused…..on success. However, they haven’t taken any physical action to make those goals happen.

While there may actually be telepathic people out there who can read your mind, it is highly unlikely that many of them will be beating your door in to join your team! I know you have heard the saying that “actions speak louder than words”. They also speak louder than goals written on a piece of paper!

So what exactly is holding you back? Fear? The only way to get out of that fear is to take steps to face it. That will be a lot easier to do if you realize that the “no’s” that you receive is not a personal reflection on you. It simply means that they are not interested in what you are offering. And it may not even be a permanent “no”. It may simply mean “not right now”. Some of these “no’s” may actually call you later and ask for more details.

What else is your “ball and chain”? Time? Maybe you work a full time job and have small children at home. Picture this concept: If you keep doing exactly what you are doing right now for the next 10 years, then 10 years from now, you will still be exactly where you are today. Is this your goal?

You say you want a change. That is great! But the only way that a change will take affect is through a different “ACTION”. You can’t set a goal and say you want something and expect to reach that goal without the action required to get you there.

So get up, grab your list of goals and take action! People who think they have no time at all to build their own business are the people who are desperately in need of it! If you put in a few extra hours now, you will have years of extra time in the future to do the things you WANT to do instead of what someone tells you that you “MUST” do!

© 2007 Bonnie Ramsey

Bonnie Ramsey
Independent Distributor
for Scent Sations, Inc.

Many people have a real fear of public speaking

Many people have a real fear of public speaking. The irony is that almost everyone is comfortable talking to one or two people at a time but when that number grows, anxiety sets in. That anxiety can cause major physical reactions including being short of breath, sweating, dry mouth, a sick feeling in the pit of the stomach and, in some cases, a sense of real panic.

This need not be so and anyone can learn to overcome the fear of public speaking easily. The person just needs to master five basic techniques to overcome the anxiety and then start to really enjoy communicating with other people in groups of all sizes.

The first technique is a physical one. When we get stressed we experience a sympathetic reaction or stress response. The opposite to this is the parasympathetic swing or relaxation response. The easiest way to trigger the parasympathetic response is through controlled breathing. Simply breathe in for a count of 3, hold your breath for a count of 1 and then breathe out for a count of 9. This will slow down your breathing and increase the flow of oxygen to your brain.

The second technique is mental rehearsal. Remember when you were really successful at talking effectively with one or more people. Relive that experience. Where were you? What did you see? What were your physical sensations, warm or cold? How did you feel inside? What sounds did you hear? By focusing on a time when you performed well you will put yourself in a positive mental state and counter the stress response mentally.

The third technique revolves about what we call cognitive behavioural management. Our beliefs about our ability to perform interpret things that happen to us and those interpretations lead to our thoughts, emotions and behaviours. The easiest way to address the negative thoughts is to focus on positive ones such as “I’m glad I’m here”. I’m glad the audience is here”, “I care about them benefiting from my talk” and “I’ve prepared myself properly with the content of the talk”.

The fourth technique is to imagine the person in the world who you think would be the most effective at giving this talk. Picture them in your mind off and up to the right of your view and see them deliver the talk. Then imagine you can float into their body and that you can then experience what it would be like to be in their shoes delivering the talk. The third stage is to imagine their body melting away leaving you delivering the talk in the most effective way. It really works!

Finally, ensure that you practice the technique of making eye contact with your audience. Many speakers let themselves down by portraying a lack of confidence by looking at the floor, the ceiling and anywhere else other than at their audience. Practice giving more eye contact to everyone you meet to desensitize you to the process. Then with your audience use the lazy -S technique. Look at someone in the front row to your left and gain eye contact. Then move your eyes to the right, then towards the back of the audience and to the left and so on to complete a large letter S. You can alternate by starting at the back and tracing your S forwards or even imagine that the S is reversed. It doesn’t much matter in which order you trace the S. What matters is that you enable everyone in the audience to feel that they have bonded with you through personal eye contact.

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