calehawley

Posts Tagged ‘blog’

Getting to Know You

In Personal Development on April 7, 2017 at 4:24 pm

Self-awareness seems to be somewhat of a hot topic these days. Whether or not someone directly comes out and calls it self-awareness, I have heard it no less than a dozen times in the last two weeks.

To be honest, I never really thought much about it until recently. I know there are certain things that I am good at, people who I gravitate towards, and tasks that I enjoy more so than others. When you look at the big picture, identifying why I am good at these certain skills, or why I hang with the people who I do, and why I enjoy certain tasks really does come down to my personality type.

How does one become self-aware? The simple answer: pay attention to yourself. The difficult answer (which really isn’t that difficult) survey yourself. Make notes. Understand the “why.”

Years ago I worked for the drug manufacturer Pfizer. We participated in the DISCovering Yourself and Others personality inventory. I’m sure it is called something different, but you can Google DISC personality and find a number of resources. In fact, you can even take a free survey online that will give you a brief synopsis of your personality tendencies. The synopsis is shockingly identical to the results that I saw during my Pfizer days. I encourage you to do the same, but don’t focus on your perceived weaknesses revealed in the survey. Instead, focus on the positive and improve on that. Go with your instinct.

As for me and my self-awareness, I have and I guess will always be the type of person that likes to get things done and will typically do them myself. I like fast paced activities and high energy, positive people. It is no wonder then that my DISC profile is “DI,” and specifically I identify as a “persuader” and an “implementer.” Makes sense if you know anything about my personal and professional background.

Let me know what you DISCover about yourself.

Full Disclosure–There are many other personality inventories and they all say pretty much the same thing about you. I am in no way affiliated with DISC or any of its entities, and I’m sure that the others are great. I just happen to have experience with DISC.

Life Happens

In Personal Development on July 30, 2016 at 11:44 pm

There is a saying that “the road to Hell is paved with good intentions.” I intended on adding a new blog post every day this month. I intended to go to the gym at least 4 times per week this year. I intended…(fill in the blank).

Then life happens. You go out of town. The kids have projects due or practice. Your significant other needs your help with something.

The trick is to not let this get down. I think the opening statement is a bit over the top and I rarely use it. You see, I understand life happening. And often times, I prefer when life happens. I wouldn’t miss those moments spent with the ones that I love.

Maybe you have intentions too. Write them down. Start attempting them. Just because life happened should be an excuse to just forget about them al together.

Content Experts

In Marketing on July 29, 2016 at 5:09 pm

Experts in content creation, social media, and SEO seem to be a dime a dozen these days. Here’s a few quick tests for you:

If you’re looking for a content manager, are they creating content for themselves or just pushing other people content through sharing?

If you’re looking for a social media person, are they using social media regularly across all platforms?

If you’re looking for an SEO firm, can you find them by googling “SEO?”

Find yourself a practitioner, not a dabbler.

Conversation Evolution

In Communication on July 13, 2016 at 12:21 pm

The airport is a fantastic place to observe how our society has evolved over the years, specifically the way we communicate and who we communicate with. Walking through Washington Reagan airport in DC (DCA) today I passed by the shoe shine stand. Two gentlemen were getting their shoes shined, and you guessed it: looking at their smartphone. I’m not judging at all. Look what I’m doing at this very moment; posting a blog from my smartphone.

I’m as guilty as the next of doing this. Cab rides, waiting rooms, restaurant tables. I don’t see the use of technology in the settings as positive or negative, just evolved. Before smartphones, you could connect with total strangers seated next to you at the airport gate. Now you can connect with whomever you please. Strangers on social media. Family via phone conversation. Friends via Skype. Or even…the stranger next to you. 

Who do you connect with in a room full of strangers?

Clearing the Dust

In News on June 17, 2016 at 5:30 pm

It has been a very long time since I have posted here. I am clearing off the dust and will be posting here once again. Thank you for your patience. I will likely redesign the site and the feel as well, and the content may be slightly different than what I’ve posted here in the past, but should be more frequent for sure. 

Failure Casts A Long Shadow

In Image on December 13, 2011 at 10:39 am

I heard the title of this post on a podcast the other day. It was so profound. Before I give up the source of the quote, hear me out. The quote in full reads: “Failure casts a long shadow, but the minute you begin to fear that failure you’re done.”

We are trained to fear failure from an early age. Failures are foolish. Failures are different. Failures don’t get it. Failures don’t fit in. Isn’t that what it’s all about? Fitting in? If you really consider your fear of failing I’m willing to bet that it is not a fear of failure at all. It’s a fear of failing to fit in.

A Hall of Fame baseball player will fail at batting seventy percent of the time. Advertising fails at converting prospects into customers ninety-six percent of the time if not more. We tend to magnify our own failures more so than others do. And that magnification is what makes us freeze up and do nothing.

A bit of honesty from me: I still have a bit of the fear too. But I’m working on it. My challenge to you is the same one that I am involved in. Question your fears. What is your fear? Failing at what? What are the consequences of that failure? Instead of saying “failure is not an option” start saying “fear of failure is not an option”. Take that first step. They say (I love quotes from they, their credibility is impeccable) the first step is the hardest.

As for the source of the quote: my favorite comedian Jay Mohr; taken from his podcast Mohr Stories. Comedians are a different breed. I’m guessing they know a thing or two about the fear of failure. After all, they walk the last ten feet. That ten feet from backstage to the microphone and then bear their souls for the audience every night. What if they get heckled? What if they are not funny? They still walk the last ten feet and make it happen.

What are you afraid of? Failure? Or Failure to fit in?

Google+…Really, One More, Why?

In Interactive on November 17, 2011 at 4:28 pm

Well, I did it. I finally signed up for Google+. I’m told there are 40 million Google+ users. Where are they? No matter.

Why did I do it? Vanity is probably the best answer to that. Really it’s because I am in the middle of starting a new business and since Google controls the majority of search traffic in this world, I figured I could not afford to be there. So I signed up and created a personal page and a business page. If you are wondering whether you should join or not, here are some questions to ask yourself:

Do I have a business or a cause to promote?

Will I log in and use it?

Can I grow personally from being on there?

Really that is what it comes down to. I find it has the format of Facebook, seems to have a news feed layout and the ability to add photos, but is a lot like Twitter in the sense that the recommended people to follow are for the most part people you don’t know.

I’m sure that once I have downloaded the app and played around on it for a while that I will come around. As for now, the jury is still out.

What do you think? Are you on Google+?

IMAGINE Marketing Part 6 of 7–News

In News on February 10, 2011 at 11:24 pm

For immediate release. In an interesting development in Anywhere, USA, Brand X would like to announce that we are awesome and everyone should take notice. We are so confident in how good we are that we are not going to buy the advertising, we want you the media to put it into your content “free of charge”.

Sounds pretty one-sided, right? Press releases are tricky and most of what companies feel is newsworthy, often times is not. At least not on the scale you think it is.

Before you hire that PR firm, ask yourself: Is this really news that others will find useful, important, or newsworthy? If not, you can still send it, but don’t just assume it is good enough to be published. I am not going to spend a great deal of time telling you how to convince a newsroom to publish your content. There are plenty of other blogs and books that can do that for you. I want to focus on how you can control your news story distribution.

If you are reading this blog, you probably understand that any “yeah-hoo” on the planet can publish their content. And there are so many platforms in which to do so. Corporate blogs, YouTube, Facebook, etc. (am I starting to sound like a broken record yet?). Take “your news” and deliver it to your faithful. Your tried and true. Those who are already tuned in. Ask them to share with others, your content. It may not have the reach of your local paper (however, with decreasing readership it very well may) but you are reaching an audience that is already engaged with you. An audience that actually cares and is more likely to give attention to the content.

What is your news story? Can you publish content on a regular basis that your customers will pass along? I’d love to hear from you.

IMAGINE Marketing Part 5 of 7–Interactive

In Interactive on February 4, 2011 at 10:51 pm

I know, I know…blah blah blah social media blah blah blah. Another schmo telling you about the importance of social media.

Yes and no. While social media plays a part in interactive, it is not the sole platform for interaction. Just because you have a Facebook page or a Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, etc. does not mean revenue will fall out of the sky. If used properly though, it can improve your chances.

What do I mean when I say interactive? A simple exchange of ideas between customers and corporations. Social media can aid that conversation. But there are several other ways to interact with your customers. And by interact, it has to be a two-way communication. If it is only one-sided then you are just another “spammy commercial” interrupting my updates of what my friends are cooking for dinner, who needs help on Farmville, and photos of my friend’s friend’s cousin’s kids birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese’s.

What makes interaction work? Again, simply interacting without necessarily doing commerce. If you have a questions/ comments page on your website, respond in a timely manner. And not with corporate/ PR/ HR approved gobbledygook gibberish. Respond as a human being. Engage with others ar networking events (and by networking events, I mean anywhere you might see other people–and for crying out loud, please quit acting like you are networking and be yourself). Make yourself available to speak with customers when they ask for you by name or email you.

Now. If you are not sold on social media, feel free to skip ahead to the next paragraph. OK. They are gone. Since you are still here it is clear that you get it. Facebook, blogs, Twitter can all be effective when used the right way. So what is the right way? remember my post on image? It is going to vary from person to person. Update people on your industry or how you are helping the community. It can be as simple as posting your flavors of the day (FrazzleBerry Frozen Yogurt), updated designs and openings (http://www.facebook.com/nailsforgirlygirlz) events (http://www.facebook.com/lmfao) the options are endless. Some people follow only for exclusive offers. Again, it’s going to vary based on your product and your market.

Think about your interactions with the companies you shop with. You more than likely continue doing business with them based on these interactions, unless you are a bottom line lowest price only shopper. Learn from these interaction.

How are you interacting with your customers?