The Leadership Vibe

Coaching - One Blog Bit at a Time

A Call to Save Christmas – A Leadership Initiative

I love this time of year. People are happy, a little more giving and the world seems to have more peace and love. But over the years, I’ve noticed a change. The change was brought to my attention many years back as I went to visit my friend Bob in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii. I went to wish him a Merry Christmas but instead caught myself using the “politically correct” term, Happy Holidays. After our greetings and brief exchange, Bob mentioned that no one says Merry Christmas any more. I looked at him and shook my head in agreement, as we simultaneously said, “Merry Christmas” to each other in unison. I have never forgotten that day.

As many countries and the world become more culturally integrated, an envelope has been created to not offend anyone. That envelope is the “politically correct” safe mode. I think that our efforts at integration have created thin eggshells for us to walk on that have deterred us from the true meaning of Christmas. I am not speaking about the commercialization that Christmas has morphed into, I am referring to the love, hope and dreams that Christmas brings in memory of the birth of Jesus Christ.

On a global picture, it’s not just about Christmas. It could be one of hundreds or so celebrations in honor of cultural deities and traditions. It is about respecting other cultures celebrating their Source of Divine Presence and allowing them to share the love and joy in their tradition whether or not you celebrate that occasion. Without peace between religions there can never be peace in the world. 

My concern is for the next generation of the stewards of this world, our children. Not just our biological children but all children of the world. I do not see the hope and inspiration I saw growing up as a child in our children today. Yes there are many organizations, people and communities that are doing a fantastic job providing hope and inspiration. I am calling for a more unified, cohesive, global effort to move forward in using Christmas as a spring-board to start reviving love, respect, hope and peace among all cultures.  

I love the meaning of Namaste. The word Namaste, originating out of India, is a greeting or salutation used when meeting someone. Although the meanings vary, I interpret it to be the welcoming and honoring of Spirit within you.  

Imagine having this energy when others are celebrating their cultural holiday events. Allowing others to share their beliefs and for us to understand a little more about our neighbors, friends, co-workers and even strangers allows them to do the same. As we learn more, we invite love, peace, hope and understanding.  

As a leader in your business, work or family, I am inviting you to bring the words “Merry Christmas” back as a catalyst to allow others to so the same in their own celebrations. Even if you do not celebrate Christmas, by returning those words to someone that does, means you honor and respect their love for their Source of Divine Presence and accept their gift of love, peace and joy. 

Life wouldn’t be the same with Santa Claus saying, “HO, HO, HO Happy Holidays..” 

With this, I wish you a Merry Christmas.

With Love and Respect,

Million Dollar Attitude

Please click on the link below to watch my latest television interview on Million Dollar Attitude with Joni in Guarantee Your Success.

Jeff Bow Executive and Leadership Coach provides expert advice on Business, Leadership and Life Balance.


The Driver

As the end of 2010 nears, it is not only a great time to reflect on the year's events but also to challenge your thinking, to expand the boundaries of possibilities and to open the door to an Infinite Source.

Think about how your business or life would be different if the main driving force was Spirituality. Ask yourself the following questions:

1. How would your life change?
2. Would your level of stress go down and your happiness go up?
3. How would you view your current business relationships, friendships and future partnerships?
4.  How would you view money, bills and receivables?
5. Would Spirituality help you to be better in all areas of your life?
6. How would you incorporate Your Source of Divine Presence in everything that you do?

Being a leader is more than a title. It takes courage and integrity to be an innovator and ground breaker. If you are going to make a positive difference in this world, being  a part of the "status quo" is not acceptable.

Are you ready to rise to the leadership role of the highest consciousness?

The Leader in You - Inspiration

The ability to summon positive emotions during periods of intense
   stress lies at the heart of effective leadership.
                                                                                            - Jim Loehr

Embracing the Core

"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities, but in the expert's there are few." - Shunryu Suzuki-Roshi

As an experienced leader, the tendency is to be set in your ways. Flexibility in your body, mind and Spirit helps to expand your vision and embrace challenges from a different light. It allows you to lead in the moment and remove barriers that hinder progress towards your vision.
Flexibility in our bodies allows us to be limber, releases stress and prevents injury. Flexibility in our body sets the stage for a clear mind.

Flexibility in our minds allows us to be open to finding value in other's opinions, to discovering new and creative ways to share our gifts to the world and to be open to infinite possibilities we may otherwise discount.

Flexibility in our Spirit embraces the fact that we recognize every individual as unique and special. We are open to accepting everyone as they are regardless of their race, religion, spiritual belief, age or occupation.

Imagine tapping into your greater potential as a leader in your life and work when you embrace flexibility. The possibilities are phenomenal!

The Truth Always Prevails

Integrity is when your actions are congruent with your words, thoughts and values. It's easy to spot the obvious when people are not demonstrating what they say they are going to do or are not a reflection of the values they say they embody.

What about the not so obvious? What about living a life for others and not living your ideal life, vision or values?

At what point do you live in integrity first and foremost, trust in yourself and your source of divine presence that you will always be supported? In order to be the best parent, leader, spouse or provider, bringing who you are to what you do is of the utmost importance. That is living in integrity.

Deer Dreams,

Deer are amazing animals. When they see something they want to eat, they find ways to get to it. They can jump over obstacles from a standing position to over 6 feet high, pick berries from bushes filled with thorns and eat leaves off a plant leaving only the stems in place. They are intuitive and persistent.

You have the same tenacity to realize your vision! It is within you right now to live your dreams. Find ways to make it happen. Look for solutions. Find every reason 'why' you can make it happen.

You ARE brilliant; You ARE powerful; You ARE what you think you are!

The Intuition Alarm

Have you ever gotten up before your alarm clock has gone off? Have you ever gotten up on your days off at the same time you normally would get up when you are working? When you set your intention to get up at a certain time, most people will usually get up close to that time. However, even with that knowing, just to be extra sure, people will still set their alarms and not trust their internal clocks.

The same holds true for our intuition. Have you had times when your intuition told you what direction to take, notified you that your body needed a certain type of food or led you to a path of opportunity, but you decided not to take any action? It's easy to have hind sight and say, "I knew I should have......".

Intuition, like listening, is an amazing skill to master. Developing this skill and trusting in yourself can support you in leading the most amazing life.

Are you willing to live the most amazing life?

Here is a video of how powerful intuition can be.

A Mothers Intuition

Hidden Among Us

Last week, I drove past a landscape of flags that caught my attention and later found out that each of the 3,548 flags represented 5 people (children, adults and seniors) that have been fed by the Good Cheer Food Bank. These flags brought to light the extent of the need to feed the hungry right in our own community. It was shocking to learn these staggering numbers and it prompted my wife and I to learn more about the organization that supported these people in need.

"Hidden Among Us" by artist Debra Calkins

Your role as a leader is to recognize the need to integrate community as an important part of your business and life.

How can you use your leadership skills to make a positive difference in your community?

The Leadership Walk

An amazing thing happens when someone teaches a child to walk. The support is unconditional, unwavering and focused on celebrating the success of each step and cheering past each fall. The encouragement to learn never stops.

Imagine if you took this simple strategy and applied it to a difficult situation, to your business, your job or your role as a parent. What would happen?

Imagine if you applied this to yourself.

If you did, you would be walking in the shoes of a brilliant leader!

Feeling Off

Last week was an interesting week. Going into the weekend starting with Friday was a little odd for no particular reason. It was a cloudy, drizzly day for a Washington summer and things just weren't lining up. The best way to put it is, I felt off. So off that the next day when I saw a friend pass by in his vintage Mercedes leaving the farmers market, I called him 'swiffy'. Well, there's no such word! I meant to say 'spiffy'.

We all have those days when we feel 'off' for one reason or another. Instead of trying to figure out who, what or why, give yourself permission to accept it for what it is.

Sometimes in our business and life, we roar at less than 100% and veer off track once in a while. It's natures way of righting an imbalance and signals us to slow down and enjoy the view along the way and to pay attention to the things that matter.

Interestingly, later that same weekend, I saw my friend and we talked about 'swiffy'. He too shared his stories of being 'off' on those same days.

So be patient with yourself and others. You never know when someone may be having an 'off' day.

Live Your Legacy Now

Have you spent enough time on life lessons, on knowing what you don't want? Are you ready and willing to move forward in your life to get what you do want? Last week's blog was on believing and connecting to your true self.

This week is about taking action, moving beyond concept, theory and procrastination. The best ideas, plans and world changing products do not serve this world when they are kept to yourself. Talking about it serves your ego; doing something about it honors the Divine in you.

Faith is about believing in yourself and your source of Divine Presence; foolishness is jumping off a cliff without a parachute hoping you'll land on a soft bush. Create a vision of where you want to be and have a plan (road map) of how you plan to get there. Make it simple and something that works for you.

Chunk it down. Take one small step at a time. People often try to light a big log with a match. Start off with the kindling. What would your kindling be for your most outrageous, juicy vision?

Do Something, anything. Every day do something towards your vision. You'll be surprised how fast the little things add up.

Honor yourself. Do not compare yourself to others for better or worse. It really serves no purpose except to deceive you from reality.

Your voice is important in this world. You are worthy!!!


Is it easier to believe in someone else than it is to believe in yourself? Is it easier to champion someone than it is to be that champion?

Most people are givers. You serve others in the role of a parent, partner, spouse, employee, employer or business owner. Balance is important! In order to be the best you can be in any role, receiving is just as important as giving. Receiving may be in the form of compliments, self-acknowledgment, listening, ease and flow, abundance, financial success or spiritual guidance.

Fear is one of the causes that lead us down the path to self doubt. I'm not good enough, I'm too old, I should have....., It's too late, I'll wait until I retire, I am not worthy. Sound familiar?

One of the best ways of breaking through fear is by making sure your connection to your body, mind and Spirit are the best they can be.

Be Healthy:
Think about this - when you are sick, how creative do your feel? How inspired are you? How motivated are you?

Have an Open Clear Mind:
When something is bothering you, how effective are you in concentrating on other areas of your life?

Have Faith
Maintain your connection to your source of Divine Presence at all times and not just in times of challenge and controversy. Live with the knowing that everything happens in it's perfect time and place. Be grateful!

Maintaining these connections at optimal levels builds confidence. With confidence comes the belief that all things are possible. Believing in yourself ignites your brilliance!!!

The Business Life of Birds

If you ever watched an eagle fly, it usually soars and only makes slight adjustments to maintain or change it's flight path; It's wings fully expanded as it effortlessly moves from point a to b. You hear a whoosh when they take off and they quietly perch after they land looking and observing-quiet, majestic and powerful.

On the other side of the aviary life are the crows. They fly from point a to b continuously flapping their wings and squawking throughout the whole flight. Even after their flight, they sit around squawking as if they were in a reality show!

Both birds serve a purpose in this world. Which one best represents you?


“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”

-- Martin Luther King

Lessons from an Antiquarian Book and Print Seller

This past weekend I met some very talented and interesting people. I was fascinated by one person in particular who was the owner of an antiquarian book and print shop. The items in her shop dated from the sixteenth through nineteenth centuries and she knew the facts and stories behind all the pieces, hundreds, if not thousands of them. She told me that it started as a hobby and grew from there. She also mentioned that she didn't limit herself to the physical store. She had an internet business and participated in fairs and shows throughout the West Coast. She could not rely on the walk in business alone.

My friend Don said something interesting as we walked by other businesses that were closed or were closing and shutting their doors for good. He said that if an antiquarian book store can make it in this economy, other businesses should be able to do the same.

He was right. She didn't just know her business, she knew it extremely well and conveyed passion every time she spoke. She also looked for other ways to sell the products in her niche and connect with those that were interested.

Are you a reflection of the antiquarian book store owner or the shop owner closing its doors?

One Voice

As a leader in your business and life, are you fully expressing what really matters most to you in your life?

Sometimes we do not realize the exponential power that one voice has and the positive impact it can have on other lives, the world and our own life. Think about the amount of people you come into contact with on a daily basis. If you positively influence them and in turn, they influence others, you begin to share your message to the world.

It's easy to get caught up in blaming others for our lack, the economy, our health and education crisis but what are you doing to positively contribute to it's success in helping to change?

If all of us shared our voice in an inspirational way, imagine the impact it will have on this world. Are you sharing what matters most to you in this world?

Who are you?

What would happen if you no longer could identify with your past? What if all the degrees, certificates, accolades, certifications and experiences became obsolete? How would you describe yourself to someone? Would the description of yourself be a reflection of who you have become or an image of who you were?

We often bring our past into the present to bring credibility to who we are and what we do. What can you provide to your existing and potential customers that is fresh, new and relevant to the current economy, their industry and your expertise?

How often do you hear someone who tells you the story that happened when they were a little kid about how many miles they had to walk to school through the snow and over mountains? What was your reaction? Although it may have been true, it usually isn't relevant to the current times now that we have bicycles, buses and modern transportation.

What is your story? What are your current beliefs, processes and programs? Are you so invested in your beliefs that you are unstoppable?

Living in the now is more than just the new age phrase of the day. It is a necessity that becomes your distinctive value that sets you apart from the those who try to copy your genius. The only obstacle stopping you from tapping into your brilliance is you resting on the laurels of your past success.

So, who are you?


Who Wants to be a Millionaire- is a popular game show where a contestant has to answer questions. If they get stuck, they can get help with the aid of lifelines. The three lifelines are:

a. Ask the audience.
b. Double dip.
c. Ask the expert.

What if we were to use this concept for your business to help you move forward? Your choices would be:

a. Ask your customers. (Find out what their needs are; what is working; what they would like to see in the future)
b. Have a do over. (Revisit something you have done and make it better)
c. Ask an expert. (Include someone as part of your virtual team who has the expertise you need to make the difference)

Which one would you choose as your lifeline?

Sometimes businesses wait until it is too late, become reactionary and need a lifeline to survive. The key is to be proactive and to keep looking ahead, especially when things are going good. Whether you are an owner, manager or employee, reinvention should not occur out of necessity, but instead, out of inspiration.

Meaningful Connections

How would you categorize the connections that you make with people on a regular basis for your business?

Is it ...

a. For the sale?
b. To increase the amount of customers/patients/clients you have?
c. To have a positive impact on each person and the world?
d. To share what you are passionate about?
e. To provide an experience to remember?
f. To increase your business to get by?
G. A combination of the above?

There is no right or wrong answer.

However, think about this: If you lost everything today, which one of those connections would be there to give you support?

If you are going to take the time and energy to make a connection, why not make it meaningful- however you choose to define it. It doesn't have to be just a numbers game!

Could It Be?

When you see someone dressed in a suit and tie what impression do you get? When you pass someone in a dirty tee shirt with holes and battered shorts what are you thinking? When you see someone driving a Lexus, Mercedes or Porche what thoughts go through your mind? If someone from an old rusty sedan waves at you do you acknowledge them?

Could it be that the person in the suit and tie spent their last dollar on clothes for a job interview? Could it be the organic gardener in the tattered clothes who just passed you delivered the veggies to the store you buy from? Could it be the family who scrimped and saved to put their kids through college decided to splurge on their first new car? Could it be a wave from a complete stranger that wanted to make someone's day?

From the Business View
- You never know who is a decision maker. Treat everyone with respect and kindness.

From the Humanistic View - Everyone has a story and history. Accept them for who they are and not what you judge them to be.

From a Spiritual View - Welcome and acknowledge everyone as spiritual beings without the filters of your own preferences. There really is no separation.

How can you make a positive difference in someone's life today?

Lessons from a French Press

I was cleaning a french press (a small carafe that steeps coffee) the other day and said, "This is a lot of work for a cup of coffee", but when I thought about it, it wasn't just another cup of coffee. It was a really good cup of coffee. Something different happens with a french press that makes it tastes superior to drip coffee. Was I just being lazy?

In your business, sometimes it takes that extra effort to get great results, to build your business and to market yourself.

Are you lazy? If not, are you putting in the extra effort needed? Are you doing those things that no one else is willing to do to create your competitive advantage?

If not you, then who?

Spread the Secret

Have you ever run across great service, great food or a real find at a hole-in-the-wall restaurant? It makes you want to tell someone. For me, this weekend at the Coupeville farmers market, it was a BBQ smoked tri-tip sandwich with an amazing BBQ sauce. My mouth began to water as my peripheral vision caught a glimpse of glistening moist and saucy meat overflowing on a bun. I had passed this booth many times before but never stopped and bought anything. Oooh-what a mistake.

When was the last time you spread the word about a business that you loved, had a great experience at or received outstanding service? Think of 5 businesses today and tell 10 people or more about them.

When was the last time someone shared something fantastic about your business to someone else? Are you providing products or services that are worth talking about? If not, how or what can you change so that your customers have something to share with others.

If people are spreading the word about your business, when was the last time you shared the secrets to your success with others who may need help?

If you have the time, stop by the Coupeville farmers market (on Whidbey Island,WA) on Saturdays from 10 to 2 and follow your nose. Your taste buds will not be disappointed!

Lights Out

An interesting thing happens when the power goes out at night. A stillness blankets your home and community and the world comes to a rest. The busyness of the TV, computers and house phone becomes silent. It's amazing to see how attached we have become to the things that enable us to be more efficient yet also control our lives.

Our biggest fear becomes wondering if our food will spoil. The opportunity to really spend quality time together by connecting and actually talking to one another without distractions is overshadowed by the lack of electricity to the refrigerator. Food is important but if we looked closer, how much could have been tossed out months ago? How much of the food has passed it's expiration date? Is it really worth our energy to focus on something we cannot change?

How often do you find that your focus is on things that don't really matter, things that have no real value, that just keep us busy and do not increase our connection to others, our vision or our source of divine presence? How often do we focus on things that do not provide real value or things we cannot change?

Are the things that consume your time providing real value to your business and life? Real value gives you something to talk about when the lights go out!

The Power of Catching ZZZZ

Napping has been a long tradition in many cultures. A power nap is a short 18 to 25 minute period that maximizes the benefit of sleep. Research has indicated that a short 20 minute nap can improve memory, reverse information overload and is refreshing.

What if you had the ability to 'power nap' one part of your business (biz-nap), what would that be? Potential areas may be places that are becoming stagnant, fear based or a struggle. Possible outcomes may be a refreshed perspective, inspiration, ease, new ideas and high performance.

You may be working with a difficult client and are struggling. Take a short Biz-Nap from the process. This gives you a temporary break that allows you to look at the situation from a different perspective. During this time, you may be able to look at the situation from an outsiders view point of view or choose to not focus on it at all.

How could you use a biz-nap to enhance your business?

Om and The Leaf Blower Meditation

Meditation is an interesting discipline. To sit and be able to have an empty mind challenges our ego to release control for the moment. It's easier to practice meditation if you're in an environment that's conducive to a state of nothingness. A quiet, calm and peaceful environment facilitates deeper states of meditation quicker.

Imagine that you are meditating. The birds are chirping, you are breathing the fresh morning air deeply, and getting in the zone. Then, your neighbor starts their gas powered leaf blower and continues for half an hour. Doesn't this distraction become the real practice?

We cannot control peoples personalities, a business partnership that has gone bad, a relationship that no longer is working or acts of nature. We can only choose how we react to those situations. All the self improvement and spiritual books you have read only become valid when you put into practice what you have learned.

Shall I start the leaf blower?

The Mini-Bat

One of the first cell phones that came out was a Motorola Dyna-Tac 8000. It was introduced in 1984, weighed 2 pounds and cost about $4,000.00. I called it the 'mini-bat'. In terms of time, it was not too long ago since it's inception. Since then, the evolution of technology and pricing has dramatically changed the way we communicate. Today we have compact phones that are mini-computers.

If you saw someone using a Motorola Dyna-Tac 8000 today, you may think that person is pretty cool (if used as a marketing tool) or they are still living in the dark ages. Either way you form an opinion and impression of them.

Are your methods, systems and thoughts up to date with the expectations of your ideal client, customer or patient? Are the efforts that you are putting into your business, helping to bring you closer to your ideal vision? When was the last time you invested in yourself and your business by taking a class, workshop or training?

Take a look at your business and yourself and determine if you are as progressive as you need to be. Sometimes what we do behind the scenes is not as easily noticed by others or our complacent self, so there is no motivation to change....until one day we realize that the phone that is in our hand is a mini-bat!

Which phone represents your business?

The Wedgie Factor

In his acceptance speech for the Golden Globe awards, Ryan Murphy, co-creator and producer of the hit show, Glee, dedicated his award to all those who ever got a wedgie. He explained on Oprah that he wanted to create a show with unknown actors that was optimistic and upbeat. He wanted the show to be about celebrating the difference in everyone. He went on to explain that in our youth, we try to hide our differences and want to fit in. As we grow older, our uniqueness becomes our best asset.

The message - You don't have to be in the limelight. If you be yourself, celebrate your uniqueness, maintain an optimistic and upbeat attitude and create something that lifts the spirits of others, you too will become a phenomenon!

No virus required.

Mirror Mirror

How many times a day do you look in the mirror?
When was the last time you looked yourself in the eyes and acknowledged yourself for all that you do?

* For being a great parent.
* For being a wonderful spouse or partner.
* For being a loving son, daughter, nephew or niece.
* For being a magnificent provider.
* For being a giving person.
* For trying to balance all the activities in your life.
* For accepting who you are right now.
* For being grateful for the business you have right now.
* For knowing that the answers you need are within you.
* For being a forgiving person.
* For accepting where you are in your life.
* For helping others to succeed unconditionally.
* Add more acknowledgments here.

Take the time to recognize the gift you are to this world and your uniqueness. There is no one like you in this world - You are perfect!

Recreating The Box

I often hear people say to others, "think outside the box" in their efforts to have them be more creative. In my mind, if you have to think outside the box, then something is wrong with the box.

If you were having problems in your marriage, would you look outside your marriage for happiness? That would be considered an affair and you would not be acknowledged for your creativity. You would probably want to work on your marriage and if you tried everything possible and it didn't work out, then you would want to make a change.

What if your box was so inviting, inspiring and motivating with endless possibilities? How could you tweak, change or modify your thinking so that the world of infinite possibilities becomes your box?

Panning for Gold

There was an interesting story on the news about a girl who wrote a blog about the city she lived in. She decided that she would write everyday and look for all the good things about the city. At the end of the year she noticed that her outlook was a lot more positive.

How would your world change if you blogged about all the positives in your business and life?

The Social Network Disguise

Online social networking has bombarded the lives and minds of many people. Some have connected to long lost friends, families and classmates. Others have made new business connections and have been able to benefit from the ability to reach the masses without leaving their computer. Some are addicted.

The rapid pace at which new sites pop up is phenomenal. Remember when My Space was the flavor of the day? By the time you set up your social networking and learn how to use all the functionality, the so called next latest and greatest (have to be a part of) is on the market. It's like having social networking back seat drivers with so many people and articles that claim, 'this is the one'.

Is social networking working for you? Does it allow less vulnerability and reduce fear? Are you consumed by it? Has it replaced your person to person contact?

Use the value that social networking has to your advantage as long as it fits into your business vision and plan. Don't let social networking seduce you into being it's lover.

Oohs and Aahs

I had the pleasure to witness the orca whales passing through Coupeville, WA this past Monday. Crowds gathered as quickly as the whales arrived. The baby orca put on a show, jumping repeatably. The crowd oohed and aahed! As quickly as they came, the whales moved on dissipating the crowds.

In a sense, the crowd almost seemed envious of the playful nature of the baby whale. As the whales left so did the smiles and vibrancy of the spectators as they returned to work.

When we are fascinated at what we do, we naturally ooh and aah at ourselves. How fascinated are you?


Consider Pet Rock.

In 1975, Gary Dahl, came up with the idea after listening to his friends grumble about their pets in a bar. The phenomenal fad was 1% product and 99% Marketing. The rock took the place of the pet and it came in a cardboard box carrier with holes and hay.

Simple - Rock in a box- no eyes, no mouth, no ears, just a rock.
Idea - Created from an observation of friends in a bar.
Marketing - A no fuss pet that was easy to care for. It came with a 32 page booklet that came with the rock on how to care for and train it. How funny!
End result - Gary Dahl became a millionaire in six months.

It would be absurd to compare yourself or business to a Pet Rock. But what can we learn from it?

How can you simplify your message and process so that it is clear and easy to understand? Are your ideas authentic or contrived? Are 99% of your marketing efforts promoting you as a person before the product or service you sell? How does your product or service stand out in the crowd?

There were a lot of rocks out there in 1975, but only one came in a pet carrier with instructions!

Feeling Lucky?

When was the last time you felt lucky?

Terry Fator, a ventriloquist,  was the 2007 winner of America's Got Talent. He eventually signed a Las Vegas show contract worth $100,000,000.00. (yes, one hundred million, it's not a typo). Many people in their congratulations expressed how lucky he was to have won, claiming it's like winning the lottery. He responded by saying that it was not luck. Luck is when you go out and buy a lottery ticket. He had prepared for that moment for 33 years.

Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity - Seneca- Roman philosopher

Are you prepared for the opportunities in front of you? Instead of comparing yourself to someone who is lucky and successful, look at how you can be better at what you do. Opportunities are available every day.

Preparation is a journey until is crosses the road of opportunity.

Don't let luck pass you by!

The Mirrored Leader

It's always easier to take someone who is talented and make them better. It takes a leader to inspire someone who doesn't know their true potential to help manifest it.

Would you rather hire someone who was ready, willing and able with potential or someone who is talented and lazy? Which one best describes You?

It's easy and convenient to use the economy, your employer and others as an excuse for not thriving. Thriving is like success- everyone defines it differently. Therefore, there are no excuses for not thriving since you define and create it on your own terms.

Have you faced your true potential?

Depth Perception

It's easy to find empathy when we see someone who has a disability, a homeless child on TV or an animal suffering from mistreatment. What about the people you pass on the street, your customers or someone on the other end of the phone - those you have no obvious visual clues to draw from? Everyone has a story waiting to be told.

One of the greatest challenges for the business owner is to validate the irate customer's story without it being told.

You can create an environment that's conducive to validation by letting people 'hang out' and not have to defend their story. Whether your business is bricks-and-mortar, an online business or home-based, creating distinctive value is of the utmost importance for repeat business.

Borders Book Stores took the signs at other stores to heart that read 'Do not read the books  and magazines' and created an atmosphere that allows people to explore at their leisure. created a convenient similar online experience. Starbucks changed the retail/restaurant mentality of getting people in and out quickly by letting their customers bask in their experience.

What are your distinctive values?

A Soft Rock Strategy

It takes millions of years for sediment to turn into rock. We benefit by seeing the end result of the transformation (diagenesis) of soft sediment to hard stone. We get to skip a million plus years and go straight to the end results.

In our business marketing efforts, we "plant seeds" hoping that some will sprout and turn into viable leads and eventually business. Obviously, some grow and some do not. Before planting the seeds, how often do you walk through the process and picture the end result before planting them? Having a clear and compelling strategy saves time, money and effort.

Understanding the needs of your target market and what it will take to be of service, upfront, will save you wasted time planting the wrong seeds.