Five Ways to Kick Stress in the Rear! (Guest Post)

Stress. We all have it. We all get it and if you are anything like me, you would like for it to just go away! Unfortunately, stress is something that blocks us from living a healthy, purpose-filled life and often stops us dead in our tracks. Have you had that experience?

As I Googled stress one day, I found basic consensus that the top five stressors include:

  • A sick family member
  • Your health
  • Finances
  • Relationships
  • Career/Business

There was a point in my life, when all 5 of those hit at the same time. No wonder I was having trouble just getting out of bed and dragging myself to the shower each morning and barely having the energy to get to work. I did learn although I couldn’t control some of those things, there were some ways to relieve some of my stress to improve my mental, physical, emotional, and relational life. So here are five things that I have learned to do to release some of the overwhelming stress in my life. I know I cannot rid myself of all stress, however, I find that releasing some of it is like a pressure cooker releasing some steam – I am able to get up, hop in the shower and get to work… and for me, that is success!

  1. Learn to say NO! Look at your schedule and commitments and start to de-commit, cancel or postpone those things you really do not need to do. Remember, when you way “yes” to something, you are saying “no” to something else. Make your “yes” be something that will not add more stress to your life. If you can, trade it for something you can gladly say “no” to. For me, I said “no” to being on a committee at my church that was non-productive the previous year and said “yes,” to a business networking event where I could meet others, grow as a leader and share about our businesses.
  2. Share the load. It is true that no one is able to do things just like you. But once you give up the need to control some areas that are causing stress and begin to delegate, your load will be lighter. My husband agreed to take my mom, who couldn’t drive anymore, to the store every other week for me. You cannot imagine how that one change relieved a lot of stress in my life! All I had to do was ask for help!
  3. Let it go. Often the circumstances causing stress consumes our thinking. Train yourself NOT to focus on the stressor. How? Find a way to let it go. For me, I have several ways to do this. I will write the stressor on a rock and toss it in the lake.  Sometimes I will write something down and put it in the shredder. At night, I’ve trained myself to write the stressor on an imaginary white board and then, in my mind, I keep erasing it until I can move forward. If you are a person of faith, surrender it to God.
  4. Hit the delete key. When your head is spinning and will not turn off thoughts say “not helpful” as many times as needed. Or imagine your thoughts being typed on your computer screen and then visualize yourself hitting the delete key. Then focus your thoughts on something or someone you love.
  5. Know what you can and cannot control. Take a pen and piece of paper and draw two lines to make three columns. Label the columns: Stressor, Can Control, Cannot Control. In the first column, list those things that are causing you stress. In the second column, if you have control or can do something to relieve the stressor, write it down with some action steps. In the third column, list the things that are out of your control. If you cannot control a stressor mark through it and get it off the list. It’s not worth your time or energy to focus there.

Coach Cindy Tannehill

Coach Cindy Tannehill is a John Maxwell Team Coach, Trainer & Speaker, Professional Certified Life Coach and the co-founder of Pass It On Purpose Coaching & Training Center in Kansas. She works with leaders and executives in businesses, NGOs, and faith based organizations around the world. She also has a heart for women entrepreneurs and has co-written an online course, Raise the Bar Academy – The Crash Course to help women entrepreneurs be successful in business and life.

www.johnmaxwellgroup.com/cindytannehill www.raisethebaracademy.com

Contact: cindytannehill@johnmaxwellgroup.com or cindy@raisethebaracademy.com

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Now Here’s An Awesome Find – Check This Out!!

I was contacted by a company called Blow Birthday Cards.  I had a really great conversation with the owner, Jerry.  He explained to me how the business came about, we brainstormed together, we came up with a marketing plan, and now we’re working together.  It came together fairly easy.  Why?  Well, probably because I love his concept and he is extremely reliable and trustworthy.  Sometimes I just have a good feeling about people.  And I definitely have a good feeling about Jerry (and Blow Birthday Cards).

Blow Birthday Cards lets you search for a specific card, like chocolate or heaven or octopus or toast or even Zoltar (wasn’t that from the movie BIG with Tom Hanks?).  Anyway, all cards are alphabetized on the website. You simply find the topic you want and click on the card you like.  You can then sign the card yourself by hand writing your personal message on a piece of paper, taking a picture of it with your cell phone, and then adding it onto the card through the website.  It’s super cool!!!

You then pay for the card ($4.95 with FREE mailing) – yep, cheaper than most nonpersonal cards in stores.  And the card goes in the mail just minutes later.  And your mom, dad, sister, son, aunt, teacher (whoever) gets the card just a couple days later (like regular mail).  How fast (and cool) is that?

Did you FORGET about someone’s birthday?  Do you have to get a card in the mail ASAP?  Don’t take the time to go to the store, pick one out, sign it, and mail it.  Just go to www.blowbirthdaycards.com and do it in your home, on your phone, in your pj’s.  Really!!!

You really have to check it out for yourself.  This is a super idea for just about anyone (especially husbands, well, at least for my husband).  But I really think busy moms could use this company more than anyone.  Think about it – not running to the store with the kids to “try” and shop for the perfect birthday cards – GENIUS!!!  Not to mention, you can have your kids draw a picture or write a message to Grandma or Aunty.  How cute would that be????

OK…so go here:  www.blowbirthdaycards.com and CHECK IT OUT!!!

Oh yeah, and since I work with business owners, and KNOW how crazy busy they can be, and also KNOW that they KNOW how important it is to make their workplace personal and inviting for their employees, then they should use Blow Birthday Cards to personalize birthday cards for those employees.  Right?  Good idea?  I think so!!!

Remember:  www.blowbirthdaycards.com

Elizabeth Debol
Executive Virtual Assistant
elizabeth.debol@smallbvs.com
www.SmallBVS.com

 

 

 

What Does Your CRM Look Like?

OK.  I need to start a topic of conversation regarding CRM programs & database management.  I talk to at least 1 person a week (sometimes more) regarding their contact database and CRM platforms.

I currently work within the following platforms for clients:

www.Soffront.com
www.ConstantContact.com
www.MailChimp.com
www.Zoho.com

What does your CRM look like?  Here is what I often see:

  1. Thousands of contacts getting no consistent communication.
  2. Thousands of contacts getting regular communication, but poor list segmenting means poor open rates.
  3. Thousands of contacts added to the wrong lists, resulting in poor open rates and no engagement.
  4. Thousands of contacts, segmented fairly well, getting the same communication, resulting in no engagement.

Now, some of the individuals I speak with say they have thousands of contacts, hundreds of business cards, numerous clients, and dozens of suspects, but when asked what they do with all them, they say NOTHING.

Does this sound like you?  If so, don’t feel bad.  I’m not trying to call you out or put you down.  It’s just the way it is.  Why? Because not many people really know what to do with their contacts. They just don’t know where to start.

Well, let me explain something to you.  Email marketing and list segmenting is NOT something magical.  It doesn’t happen overnight.  It doesn’t create instant clients.  But, if done correctly and consistently, it does get your name out there and get you in front of people.  And it can get you new clients. And that’s what you want!

It doesn’t have to be complicated.  It can start with a simple spreadsheet and turn into so much more in a short time if the work put in is consistent and effective.  But who has time for that?  I know you don’t. I speak with so many business owners who say they WANT to get starting with email marketing and they WANT to see the results, but they have no time in their busy work week to even think about sitting down and starting from scratch.

Don’t let all those contacts go to waste.  Don’t let all those years of networking and hours of meetings leave you with no prospects or leads. Utilize all that hard work.  Put it to good use.  Find a CRM program and email marketing platform that works for YOU.

Need help?  Contact me.  That’s what I do.  I help the overwhelmed business owner keep track of their communication efforts and consistently work with them to effectively keep their name in front of those who need their business.

Elizabeth Debol
Executive Virtual Assistant
elizabeth.debol@smallbvs.com
www.SmallBVS.com

Partnered with PixGift

What’s Your Why? (Guest Post)

by Paul Hatrak (Focal Point Coaching) in New York

Webster’s Dictionary defines “Purpose” as the reason Why something is done or used.

In September 2009 British/American Author Simon Sinek filmed one of the best TED Talks illustrating the concept of Purpose titled “Start With Why: How Great Leaders inspire everyone to take action.”

His theory is that great companies and leaders all Think, Act and Communicate in the same way and it’s the complete opposite of everyone else.

That’s because they explain their Why up front, representing their purpose, cause or belief.

Many companies today have a mission statement which drives HOW you follow a path and a vision statement which describes WHAT is the destination or goal.

But how many companies have a purpose statement?

A Purpose Statement captures succinctly WHY the organization exists and WHAT it does.

And what about you as a professional?

Do you have a purpose statement?

Simon says…people don’t buy WHAT you do they buy WHY you do it.

In my opinion you will make more waves in your pond if people believe you are the best person to help them define and achieve success on their terms.

That’s my WHY!

My purpose is help business owners define and achieve success on their terms.

And in many cases faster than they could on their own.

And HOW do I do that?

I involve them in the process 100%.

I begin every workshop with my favorite quote from Benjamin Franklin… Tell me and I forget, Teach Me and I remember, Involve me and I learn.

Simon also says…The goal is not to do business with everyone who needs what you have, the goal is to do business with people who believe what you believe.

And in the end, like Glinda, the good Witch from the Wizard of Oz says to Dorothy, I help my clients believe and realize they’ve had the power all along.

Paul Hatrak, CPA, CGMA
Business Growth Expert
Helping CPAs, Financial Advisors and Attorneys grow their Businesses exponentially.

Reach out to me for a free thirty-minute business assessment at
908-420-5736 or via email at phatrak@focalpointcoaching.com.

Website: https://paulhatrak.focalpointcoaching.com.

We want to support Hiring Managers in HR

I’m the founder of V.A.S.T and the owner of Business Virtual Services, LLC. For the last 6 years, I have been working with business owners of all industries.  I connect to all my clients on a personal and professional level, and over time I’ve grown as a professional.  I’ve come to realize that I really love working with people.  I have a great sense of how people relate to business and how their work ethic and personality can fiercely effect whether they succeed or not.

Because of these amazing experiences, I knew it was time for my business to grow by offering recruiting services for business owners.  In today’s world with constant job hopping, immature attitudes, social media obsessions, and a lack of work ethic, I think it’s extremely important to take the time to find perfect employees.

Due to my experience and the frustration I’ve seen/heard from my clients, I know that making more of an effort and spending a little more money & time on certain business decisions has a long-lasting effect on the company as a whole.

I plan to dedicate my time supporting business owners as they take the journey into finding AND keeping great employees.

I also plan to assist job seekers in finding that perfect position for them, educate them on professionalism, and advance their talents along the way.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

V.A.S.T. Recruiting Services was created for two reasons:

1) To assist hiring managers and business owners find the perfect employees for their businesses.

2) To advance amazing talent by finding the best job opportunity that fits them. Both of these reasons have the employer AND the employee in mind.  We also provide support to HR departments.

Companies have to understand how important it is to treat their employees with respect, and they need to learn how to manage incredible talent, motive their staff, engage their teams, express their appreciation, and retain the employees they so badly want to keep. WE CAN HELP.

Employers / Business Owners:  Do you know your WHY?  Why did you start your business?  Why are you looking to hire?  Why do you do what you do every day? Why are you looking for recruiting help?  Why are you growing your business?  Why do you want to find the perfect candidates?

The costs associated with hiring a new employee:

1.  Includes advertising, interviewing, screening, and hiring.

2.  Includes training and management time.

3.  Lost productivity – taking a new employee 1 or 2 years to reach productivity of an existing person.

4.  Lost engagement – other employees who see high turnover tend to disengage and lost productivity.

5.  Customer service errors – new employees take longer and are often less adept at solving problems.

Do you want to lose money, productivity, and employee moral because you’re simply not hiring the right people?

Do you need to hire an asset to your company, but don’t have the time to advertise a job description, screen all the candidates, make interview calls, and write up job offers?

Let us help you find that perfect new employee so your turnover is less and your productivity is greater!

Are you ready to have professionals take on this tedious task?

Most recruiting services require getting paid a portion (percentage) of the salary of the position you are looking to fill. Personally, I think this is crazy.  The same work is being done for each position, so it doesn’t make sense to have to pay a recruiter this way. We find your ideal candidates for a flat-fee; and a reasonable one at that.

Please NOTE that we do NOT have candidates on hand.  We are not that type of recruiting business.   We cater to the employer and find what they need based on open positions.  We do all the legwork and find you exactly what your business needs.

We are a unique business and want to work with YOU to make your business the best it can be!

Please click HERE to learn more about how we can help you!

 

Elizabeth Debol
Virtual Recruiting Specialist
vastrecruiting@gmail.com
www.VastRecruiting.com

Get your brand in front of hundreds of people. Save thousands of dollar$ on marketing.

Problem:   You need to promote your business in a highly competitive market.

Solution:    PixGift will give you the chance to do it.

Value:      Reaching a vast audience in an inexpensive way.

 www.PixGift.com
Sponsor a Giving Board to a nonprofit and reach their donors and their social networks while you improve the image of your company.

In the digital world, the race to get your product or service in front of an audience is more complicated than ever. Most businesses are in a competitive market, where others are trying to sell to the same exact audience.

With PixGift, you can improve both your customer relationships and increase brand awareness in a distinctive way. Through our giving boards, you can showcase your business in an easy and inexpensive way, to donors and their social networks when you sponsor a non-profit or donate to a fundraising campaign.

All you need to do is decide the charity/non-profit you want to support and how much your sponsorship amount will be. Then you will buy a giving board for that organization, and your brand will appear as part of the board with a link to your website.

When donors use the share buttons, they will be posting the campaign including your business information. Your brand will be exposed to the thousands of people behind the donors’ network, providing your company with a high-value, high-impact marketing avenue that supports a cause and doesn’t break the budget!

Watch this VIDEO to learn more.

Interested? To start your first giving board, all you need to do is contact us HERE.

Elizabeth Debol
Executive Virtual Assistant
elizabeth.debol@smallbvs.com
www.SmallBVS.com

Partnered with PixGift

What’s the real (effective) way to send email campaigns?

OK.  So lately, I’ve had some real questions about email marketing.  There is so much out there, and so much to learn, that many of my clients (and potential clients) are just getting frustrated with how unpredictable email marketing seems to be.

Well, let me start by saying this…It is a very slow process!!  You will have to do these things, and do them correctly, for email marketing to work:

  1. Pick an email marketing program that will work for your budget and your needs (I recommend Constant Contact because of all the tools it has to offer).
  2. Create web forms for your website, your blog, and social media.  These forms help get sign-ups for your email campaigns.
  3. Create an email that has value, is not too long, is not too short, has the right colors, and is mobile friendly.
  4. Load an organic, nurtured list of individuals into your program (and then learn how to segment them as your list grows).
  5. Follow-up with your contacts, based on their interests, their wants, and their needs.
  6. As your list grows and the demands get higher for your valuable content, create automated emails, or even put together a “product” using email marketing.

Oh goodness…so much to think about.

Let’s first start with FINDING INDIVIDUALS TO EMAIL. Where are you getting your contacts from?  Do you have a well-nurtured list of people just sitting in your folders in your Gmail or Outlook accounts?

Did you purchase a list that you’re hoping to use (I really hope you didn’t waste your money)?

Are you in the process of networking, collecting business cards, handing out flyers, speaking at events, etc?

AND what do you do with all those NEW contacts?

First, you have to decide who is who, where each contact came from, how you know them, what relationship you’ve nurtured through them.  Then, you need to segment them based on your answers.  The idea is to create SPECIFIC lists so you can send them SPECIFIC valuable content through your email marketing efforts.  If you don’t have contacts, well, then you need to get some. You can do this by using a web form through your email marketing program, through networking in person, or through prospecting on LinkedIn.

Is all this too much to process?  I know, it can be overwhelming.  And that’s JUST finding contacts.

Now, the first email you send to your contacts SHOULD always be an introductory email.  You should include who you are, how you know them, why you’re emailing them, what you have to offer, and how often you plan to email them.  AND always include a way for them to opt-out or unsubscribe…always!!!

Listen, don’t beat your head against the wall trying to figure all this out. Let me help you with ALL of this and more.  Email marketing is often times trial and error.  It’s can be a very long process…it takes time.  Don’t get lost in the email marketing world.  Contact me today so I can help!

Think of it this way.  Even if it takes you months to actually get it all right, just ONE of those contacts actually making the right move at the right time can pay for all your hard work and then some.  But in order to get that contact (and hopefully more) to purchase from you, you have to nurture them the right way…through segmented email marketing!

So, get help and do it all the correct way.  Don’t settle for a purchased list or a $10/hour admin to help you.  Remember, you ALWAYS get what you pay for…ALWAYS!!

Have a question about your email marketing needs?  Contact me! I will walk you through what needs to be done first, we will set a plan in motion together, and I will work with your budget and your business needs!

Elizabeth
Virtual Marketing Assistant
Business Virtual Services, LLC
www.BusinessVirtualServices.com