Home » growth

Tag: growth

What does disruption feel like to you?

I admire the idea of disruption but it sort of scares me too. I’ve been thinking about how to disrupt my own business but that sort of scares me too.

Back in October, I changed up some of my operating and support systems and I’ve also been changing up my work mix. While I wouldn’t call it a full disruption, it feels like lots of change to me and I’m not always sure I’m headed in the “right” direction. I’m a bit like my own clients who say to me “Tell me what I need to do”!  But ultimately it’s up to us – not someone else to make the change happen.

Anyway, I’m sitting here on what feels like the edge or cusp of disruption while taking it one small step at a time. Here are some of the l steps I’m taking: 

  1. Embracing AI when it can get me unstuck (ChatGPT) or make me more productive (Krisp.ai).
  2. Taking on projects that excite me but don’t fit my usual work model.
  3. MORE meeting people in real life (IRL). This is where the magic happens – the need for human interaction, connection and community is where ideas become possibilities. 

I’m curious – what does disruption look like or feel like to you? And what’s becoming possible for you? 

As always, check out my “74 Experts, Tools & Resources for Engaging & Growing Your Audience” for a comprehensive compilation of resources to help you take your next big (or small) steps! 

Planning for a productive year

Hopefully, by now, you’ve given some thought to several things that you would like to achieve this year.  Are you planning to roll out a newsletter, become a regular blogger, learn about social media (– or maybe you just want to simply commit to exercising more).  If you haven’t given it any thought, then take a few minutes to look at your (probably pretty blank calendar) for 2014 and think about what you would like to be doing and achieve this year?

Got your goal(s) in mind?  Great!  Write it down where you will review regularly so that you can remind yourself on a consistent basis what you are working toward.  You don’t want to get distracted by the everday-ness of life and loose focus on the big picture.

Now it’s time for the “secret sauce second step” as the big disconnect for many is getting from goal setting to actually making it happen.

Break down your goal into manageable steps – Many times we don’t reach our goal or even get started on the goal because it seems too lofty, unattainable or overwhelming or we don’t know where to start.  Breaking your goal down into manageable bite-size steps will help you get started quicker and more than likely will help you create productive habits that support your goals.

For many, Step #1 is simply doing the research.  As you are figuring out your steps also think about what other resources might be involved in reaching your goal.  Can you do this by yourself?  Will you need the help of others?  Are there costs involved or set-up work that needs to happen?

Here’s an example:  Let’s say you want to get 200 followers on your social media sites or your email list, your basic steps might look like this:

  • Step #1 – Research using the Internet, attend social media class or webinar
  • Step #2 – Set-up social media account or email service
  • Step #3 – Create profile or templates
  • Step #4 – Follow or subscribe to others in your space, to figure out best practices
  • Step #5 – Introduce promotion/announcement to encourage followers
  • Step #6 – Figure out how and where you are going to source and save content and content ideas for posting and sharing
  • Step #7 – Create a regular schedule* for sourcing, posts and responding.
  • Step #8 – Review what is working best for you and adjust accordingly.

As you can see, breaking down what might seem to be an overwhelming prospect now becomes an actionable attainable process.  The key is to ensure you make time for the process.

Put it on the calendar – Now you have laid out the steps required to achieve your goal, it is very important to make the time for each of these steps.   Get that 2014 calendar back out and start scheduling realistic time for each of these steps.  Don’t just write it down on your calendar as a “to-do”.  You should literally create an actual time slot or appointment for each and every step.

For some, planning forward scheduling time for each step in a manageable sequential time frame is the best approach.  For others, it works better to set a deadline date by which you would like to have the goal achieved and work backwards to the present day building in each step.  Either way you should ensure that you have a clear picture of the time frame you are committing to achieving this goal.

Think of it this way, it is not just a calendar, but it’s your life.  “Fill it with the things that deserve to be there,” advises time management guru (and a client) Laura Vanderkam.  Having a plan will not only make you more productive, it will lead to more fulfilling life.  You will be amazed what you can achieve in a year!

Here are some resourceful articles and downloads about planning, scheduling and executing particularly for small businesses focused on their online marketing and social media.

* Want to Be More Productive? Build Your Editorial Calendar – Dorie Clark
* Don’t Let The Small Business Time Vampire Drain The Life From Your Social Media Presence – Social Collectives
* Your Daily Blogging Checklist – The SITS Girls
*Online Marketing Calendar & Checklist (Click to download) – NancySheed.com

Please leave a comment below sharing your big plans for this year.  Thanks!

What’s On Your Life List?

As we look forward to a new year, the media as well as friends and family bombard us with commitments to New Years resolutions.  Instead of falling into that annual trap, I challenge you to try a different approach.   This year take some time and think about what’s on your bucket list or List of 100 Dreams that you would like to achieve in the next year.  And don’t just think about it, write it down!

To some, this exercise is easy. They always have a running list of ideas or goals.  But for many of us, we get caught up in the day-to-day busy-ness of life and realize that another year has quickly passed.  If you need a little kick-start, here are three different challenges worth exploring to help you zero in on fulfilling experiences for the new year:

Try – What are you going to try next year that you’ve never done?  What have you been thinking about that you know would be a good challenge and stretch you out of your comfort zone?

For me, I am going to find a way to incorporate the idea of video into my business.  It scares the heck out of me but I’m definitely convinced there is content better shared via video than the printed word.

Learn – What new skill or subject will you tackle or perfect next year? Whether it is heading back to the classroom, attending a conference, or hiring a trainer, we should never stop learning.

I am hoping to attend at least one social media / content marketing conference where I can learn about the trends and tricks of the industry as well as meet other like-minded professionals and share best practices.

Grow – What can you do next year in a bigger better way?  You may very well have a terrific business or career path going along quite nicely, but there is always room for growth.  Are you going to focus on increasing your income, hire additional employees, create partnerships or alliances or maybe just take steps to grow your social media following?

Ideally, I would love to grow in all of these areas.  Who wouldn’t – right?

In thinking about these challenges: try, learn and grow, you could very well have one goal that applies across the board.  The most important consideration is to focus on what is important to you and what will add value to your work and your life in a meaningful way.

I would love to know what you are looking forward to achieving in next year.  If you dare, please share what’s on your life list in the comments below.   Good luck!