Partnership Connections Expo

If you want to do business with Cobb County Schools in the Metro-Atlanta area you won’t want to miss the upcoming “Partnership Connections Expo” Thursday, June 16, 2016 from 9:00am – 12:00pm.

NorthStar Churchcobb county schools logo
3413 Blue Springs Road
Kennesaw, GA 30144

The best part about this expo is that it is FREE!

Join us for the first annual Partnership Connections Expo on June 16, at NorthStar Church. This is a unique new expo experience that is bringing together the leaders of Kennesaw and Acworth area schools as the schools host exhibit booths to meet, greet and network with YOU, the local business community.

You won’t be sitting at a booth hoping for a school to come talk with you; you can simply approach the schools you are interested in doing business with!  The schools are looking to build and sustain mutually-beneficial relationships with local area businesses.

This FREE event will include complimentary breakfast and has been created to help businesses get a foot in the door with the leadership of elementary, middle and high schools in the West Cobb area.

If you think your company could benefit from doing business with local schools, or you would like to support local schools and want more information on how to help, you need to mark your calendar for June 16, at NorthStar Church!!!

Participating Schools:

Elementary Schools
Big Shanty
Pickett’s Mill

Middle Schools
Lost Mountain
Pine Mountain

High Schools
Kennesaw Mountain
North Cobb

This event is sponsored by:

kba logo

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How To Enjoy Today

Recently, someone close to me was upset about what was going on around her. I sent her a text with some tips on how to turn her frustrating day into an enjoyable one, and I thought I’d share them with you. 

1. Don’t believe the lie that the outcomes have to be what you want in order for you to enjoy your day. 

2. Don’t try to find people to agree with your disappointment; it just keeps you there longer.

3. Let others do what they want without your judgement (that only causes you stress)

4. When plan A doesn’t work, don’t waste time complaining; look for a plan B (or C or D)

5. Realize that your enjoyment in life comes from “how” YOU respond to all circumstances in life, NOT from the circumstances themselves.

I don’t want you to waste years of your life like I did trying to control outcomes and being angry when they didn’t turn out like they were “supposed to.”

I can’t control that; that is entirely up to you. I hope you choose to have an amazing day!

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Be Intentional, Not Reactionary

 It’s good to know what you don’t want.

It’s also good to know that you want something different.

However, it’s dangerous to not know where you want to go. It enables people who say whatever you want to hear take control over you. It’s how elitism is created and sustained. 

We need to be able to think through 5 years, 10 years, 20 years and 50 years down the road and how these possible changes will not only effect us, but the generations that will come behind us. 

That is what having emotional intelligence and values based authenticity does for you. 
It enables you to sacrifice for the greater good, and helps you to focus on how to effectively serve those around us. 

Doing “something else” isn’t always better; especially if it’s driven by emotionalism instead of emotional intelligence and values based authenticity.

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Use Your Big Butt To Serve Others

Too often we say we want to help people BUT something gets in the way.  We all have big but’s in our lives that keep us from doing what we need to in order to give our customer’s service excellence.  Here is a great way to use your big BUTT to serve your customers!big butt

B – Be Glad you are there

  • Use positive affirmations as you approach the person or pick up the phone
  • Value the customer in your mind
  • Let them know you are looking forward to solving their problem

UUnderstand their expectations

  • Ask open ended questions to understand the problem
  • Ask open ended questions to understand the cause
  • Ask open ended questions to understand what they want the results to be

T   – Tell them what you are going to do

  • Be specific and match your action to the cause(s) of the problem
  • Ask them if that would satisfy their need
  • Do what you said

T  – Thank them for giving you the opportunity to help them

  • Be sincere and specific
  • Check to see if there are any additional opportunities to help them
  • Invited them back, and give them directions (phone, email, website, etc)

No more excuses!  Now get your BUTT out there and serve your customers!

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Sorry vs Repentance

In any relationship there are times when we make mistakes, or are faced with a spouse, friend or business associate who does something to hurt our relationship with them. When we confront them, and they want to restore the relationship, we usually see one of two faces of remorse: they are either sorry or repentant.

Being Sorry

Sorry is a sacrifice of oneself to get back what they lost due to bad behavior.

When one is sorry they will still defend their inappropriate actions as appropriate due to the circumstances at that time.  They will often blame their actions on other people.

When one is sorry and doesn’t get the results they are seeking they often:

  • Become angry and resentful.
  • Resort back to their previous inappropriate behavior rather quickly
  • Rationalize behavior by blaming the other person for not giving them what they wanted in return for their changed behavior.

When one is sorry and they do get back what they want, they are satisfied. However, they will still typically resort back to the previous inappropriate behavior. It will not be noticeable at first; it will happen slowly, in small incremental steps.

Sorry only has temporary results.

Being Repentant

Repentance is the willingness to give up the rest of what you have to make things right.

Repentance is revealed in a long term ability:

  • To take responsibility of their own actions without the need to blame others
  • To deny oneself
  • To be humble
  • To Identify how our actions hurt us, hurt others and limited our ability to succeed

These are the internal qualities that prove one is truly repentant.
When one is repentant they won’t defend their past actions, they will condemn them and warn others not to do the same. They may recognize what others did to trigger their negative emotions, but they won’t blame their inappropriate behavior on others.

When one is repentant and doesn’t get the results from others they want, they will continue on the path of improved behavior. They recognize their part in the relationship and remain faithful to their Foundaional Core Values regardless of other’s behaviors.

When one is repentant and does get the results from others they desire they remain humble and greatful, and they show it by continuing on the path of improved behavior.

Repentance has long lasting results.

Use Discernment

As you learn to recognize these two patterns of behavior in those you have confronted I encourage you to walk away from the friends and business associates that are sorry. In fact, run away. Walking away may be too slow a retreat and you might be tempted to reengage them.

It is better to lose business and unhealthy friendships than to endure the stress of repeated offenses.
If you are married to someone that is sorry but not repentant, get help from a counselor or marriage coach.

Don’t only confront them with how they are hurting you, but ask them open ended questions to help them discover how their actions might be violating their Foundational Core Values. Be concerned about them hurting themselves and give them time to work through the internal emotional chaos that violating themselves creates.

By doing this you are embracing the same force they are, loving them, but from a more healthy perspective.

I want to warn you about divorcing too quickly, especially if you have children. Divorce seldom solves more problems than it creates. And you will still remain attached to your former spouse emotionally and in daily life, due to the children.
If you aren’t married, discern rather quickly how a boyfriend or girlfriend handles relationships when things go wrong. Are they sorry or repentant when they act inappropriately? Can they even admit when they are wrong?

In business this level of discernment is equally as important, because how they treated the last business relationship is the best indicator of how they will treat you. Be willing to walk away from a great deal, because connecting yourself with a non repentant business partner is a recipe for disaster!

But most important is how you act. Examine your own past and honestly ask yourself:

  • Can I easily admit it when I am wrong?
  • Do I have to blame others or can I be wrong all by myself?
  • When I act inappropriately am I sorry or repentant?
  • What keeps me from showing true repentance?
  • Who can I ask to help me be accountable to handle my mistakes appropriately.

If you need help, find a coach that can help you discover your Foundational Core Values so that you can harness what is intrinsically important to you in order to make the adjustments you need to make.

In the end, we are only responsible for our own actions and reactions. Even if no one else is repentant, you will feel better about yourself and live a more fulfilled life if you leave being sorry behind and move forward with repentance.

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Commitment To The Right Activities

A friend of mine and I were talking about success this morning.  He gave me a great compliment about how he has observed my rapid success over the past few years, and wondered how he could imitate that success.

During our conversation I referenced the Integrity Selling Congruence Model.  These are 5 dimensions that I assess in myself on a consistent basis.  They are:

  1. My view of sellingcongruence_model
  2. My view of my abilities to sell
  3. My values
  4. My commitment to activities
  5. My belief in my product

At Integrity Solutions we believe that if there are any gaps between these dimensions then we will encounter:

  • Low energy
  • Decreased achievement drive
  • Call reluctance
  • Busyness vs productivity

However, if we align these dimensions, stack them on top of each other like quarters, and all of these dimensions are congruent with each other, we find that we will discover:

  • Increased level of excitement and energy
  • Increased achievement drive
  • A desire to talk to others about what we offer
  • Productivity vs busyness

As we looked how my friend rated himself in these five dimensions, the one that was incongruent for him was his commitment to activities.  It only takes one being out of alignment for success to be hampered.

Many people are like my friend: they love their products, believe that selling is a noble profession, and they know that they have the skills to sell.  However, they still find themselves lacking the ability to be committed to activities necessary to succeed.

Here are a few tips on how to get this dimension back into alignment:

  1. Identify your goals.  If you get into your car and just drive, the odds are you won’t wind up where you want to go unless you put the address of your destination into your phone or GPS device.  Especially if you’ve never been to that location before.  In the same manner, you want to set a few goals. Simply write down where you want to be in 6 months, 1 year, 3 years, and five years.  Be specific.
  2. Identify the right activities.  There are daily activities that will move you toward your next goal.  Identify them, and identify how they will get you to that goal.  Too many times we mistake being busy for being productive.  Successful people know what activities will move them closer to their goal, even if it’s only an inch in the right direction!
  3. Commit to do the activities.  The easiest way to do this is to “Time Activate” the activity.  My father came up with this phrase back in the 1980’s and it simply means this:  Once a task is identified, calculate how long it will take to complete the task and then put it on your calendar as an appointment.  It doesn’t matter if you like the task, it only matters that it moves you toward achieving your goal.
  4. Treat important tasks as meetings with important people.  There are times I turn down meetings, because the task I have scheduled has to get done in order for me to move toward my goal.  These important tasks are your “friends.”  Meeting with them today will get you what you are striving for.
  5. Stop considering your emotions.  To achieve your goals you will have to work, and for the most part, work isn’t loads of fun.  The rewards of hard work are, but the work itself is a drag.  Expect it to be, and lean into the pain.  It won’t last long… I promise!
  6. Take small bites.  You’ve heard the old joke: “How do you eat an elephant?”  The answer is simple: “One bite at a time.”  Don’t overwhelm yourself with tasks that burn you out.  Break up that large task into smaller tasks and take breaks with other “right activities” you actually enjoy.
  7. Reward Yourself.  Don’t just reward yourself for reaching the final objective.  Reward yourself along the way.  Reaching small goals deserve small rewards; reaching larger goals deserve larger rewards.  Be sure you really bonus yourself at the very end when you reach the final objective!  You will be surprised at how that last reward will increase your achievement drive.

It has been said that “most people fail, not because of a lack of desire, but because of a lack of commitment.”  Put these seven tips to use this week and see if your energy level and achievement drive increases.  My bet is that they will!

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Sharing Life

Sitting on the beach in Punta Cana offers the most delightful opportunity to people watch as couples and families from all over the world come there for a week or two of rest and relaxation.  

The People are interesting to watch:
– The children, oblivious to those around them, a implying enjoying the moment   

– The young men and women trying to show off what they have as they walk up and down the beach, knowing they are in paradise but too aware of those around them to fully enjoy the moment they are in. 

– The family that is so busy trying to capture their vacation on film (or by digital means) to watch later, that they miss the amazing moments of right now. 

– The middle aged men and women who still see themselves as young, and dress that way, although they really shouldn’t. 

– The elderly couples who know each other’s routine and needs, who have no worries, but simply enjoy the beauty around them. 

As I watch this day after day, all around me, I find it interesting that it is the children and the elderly that enjoy the moment. 

On this particular morning Alisa and I scored two lounge chairs under a thatched umbrella roof on the front row with an unobstructed view of the clear blue waves softly crashing on the beach, and the people walking by. 

As I lay in my lunge chair watching the waves, an elderly man shuffled by my chair on the right, slowly making his way toward the water. 

He stood in the surf as the waves brought the cool water of the Atlantic over his feet. He slowly inched his way into the surf. Once up to his waste he dives in as if he were 20 again and swims a few feet. 

Perhaps his body’s ability reminds him of his age, or maybe he just wanted to finally get his whole body wet. Whatever the reason he stands waist high in the surf and allows the waves to flow over him as he faces the ocean. 

He stands silently gazing at the horizon as if he is contemplating his future. 

What is sad is that the world has given up on him and his peers, as if they offer nothing of value to the world. I can’t help but wonder what wisdom he could share with me, what stories he could regale me with. 

His whole life is a lesson that others could learn from, if they would only listen. 

As he walks back to his chair he passes by Alisa. “How was the water?” I asked. He only nodded and smiled; he spoke no English. 

I lost out on any wisdom he could share; the curse of the Tower of Babel follows us to this day.

However, This experience made me realize that we all have a story to tell, wisdom to pass on, a purpose to fulfill, and a life to share.

You are never too young, too old or too busy to fulfill your purpose. You are God’s gift to those around you.

Don’t worry if some don’t want that gift; keep searching out those that do.

A life shared is never a wasted life. 

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