Keep It Simple

Especially With Your Money

Among the many things that I’ve learned since becoming a mentor of The Business Wealth Club Birmingham, it’s the importance and power of keeping things simple. That is, when we are able to break down seemingly complex issues and powerful business concepts into digestible, understandable chunks of information.

One of the most common challenges for many businesses (small and large) is the matter of the clear, confident and comfortable understanding of “money matters” such as cash flow.

“Cash is or oil in your business engine. Without it, your business will seize up and die.”

This a quote from Paul Avins and another clear example of how, in this instance, cash flow can be boiled down to clear and powerful metaphors that business people understand. That’s what we do at The Business Wealth Club.

Recently, The Guardian newspaper (the online edition), published one of my articles on the subject of cash flow. In the article. I explain how establishing and maintaining cash flow can also be broken down into three core principles (yes, another tetrahedron)

We have always based our Cashflow management on the following:

  • Relationships
  • Systems
  • Processes that are bound by trust backed up by paper (written agreements made while relationships are good).

To read the rest of this article go to www.bit.ly/i2iguardian

Three Steps to Better Cashflow

Cash is King.

Cash is the oil in your business engine. Without it your ‘engine’ will cease up and die.

Your ability to maintain cash flow is best when based upon

  • Relationship,
  • Systems and
  • Processes

that are bound by trust backed up by paper (written agreements made while relationships are good)

1.  Relationships

Informal – Identify and recognise alignment with corporate and individual values with customers, suppliers and stakeholders.  Your ‘gut’ instinct is often a very good guide that could save you money in the long run.  This also paves the way to understand how the other people and organisations really operate so that you can navigate through tough times – yours or theirs.

Formal – Ranging from profile tools to credit checks. Set thresholds for putting various ‘checks’ in place commensurate to the level of financial risk associated with the relationship.  This can then be formalised in a written agreement or be used to ensure if ‘standard’ terms and conditions fit the situation.

2.  Systems

Systems, particularly electronic systems, don’t sleep and can keep you aware of where you are and, ideally, where you’re headed.  Systems ranging from accounting packages to sales systems provide an early warning prior to cash flow problems OR can highlight opportunities to invest your surplus more wisely.

3.  Processes

Control and Predictability (most of the time).  You can’t control people, but you can control activities. Setting clear DOCUMENTED processes (based upon best practice for your industry) and exercising the discipline to follow them EVERY time will ensure ongoing success.

“Cash is King”

I say all of that to say this….

Economics is more about people and their behaviours that it is mathematics.  When one person starts to hold on to their cash, it brings about fear.  The fear spreads and soon enough, lots more people are holding on to their cash. 

It takes a strong level of self belief to break out of the cycle of fear, but if you don’t the money you are holding on to is the VERY REASON you may find that you’re not getting paid. 

They (you) too have forgotten their value, let go of their values and are causing someone else (you) to be more fearful.  In the process they (you) are damaging their (your) credibility, credit rating and self esteem. 

When you step into a world and mindset of abundance and, better yet, into communities where people don’t listen to or subscribe to the messages of fear, you’ll find that you’ll let go and see an abundant flow (including cash).

Puzzle me this, puzzle me that…..

Are you holding on to cash that you promised (with a PO, a verbal agreement, a contract) to pay someone?  Are you holding off on making an investment into yourself or your business that you know (or are guaranteed) that it will give a return but you are still are waiting?

If so, you’re participating in the fearful behavior that is keeping THE (and your) economy from recovering faster.

My call to action:

“Keep your word pay what you can from what you have…. MORE will come

Invest in yourself and your business.  When the rest of the country and the world gets out of ‘fear mode’ you’ll be ready to serve and grow like never before.

Walking on the Travelator

Moving Without Moving

Do you ever feel as if you are doing a lot of work and putting in a lot of effort but you’re just not moving forward fast enough or at all?

It’s rare that you’re not moving at all because you may, in fact, be moving backwards!

That said, I’m not a believer in ‘moving backward’ as I believe that there’s always something that was gained from the perceived movement in the opposite direction that you may have intended. Whether it was learning ‘just one thing that I know not to do again’ or ‘now I know that I don’t want to feel this way again’

So what does this all mean in the context of business?

In my usual way, I’ll give the answer up front for those who still think that the answer is the answer.

“Movement is perception. Perception can also ensure movement.”

The best metaphor that comes to mind is the travelator.  For those who are unsure what I’m referring to, a travelator is the moving walkway that you find at a lot of large international airports. It’s similar in look and design to the escalators in buildings and malls except it moves you horizontally.

My work as a speaker and coach often requires me to travel internationally. This means that I spend a fair bit of time at airports going from one terminal to another.  There are times where a flight has been delayed and time is short to make the transfer between planes.  On these occasions I have a clear objective: get to the next terminal in the next 10 minutes or risk missing a flight.  Yes, of course, I could get the benefit of the exercise and run between terminals. I could also, where the opportunity presents itself, also use a travelator.  Typically the speed of the travelator is that of a fair paced walk. Additionally, the ‘rules’ of the travelator are that you can stand still and stay to the right or you can walk (even briskly) on the left.

http://youtu.be/6UH0-Gnffl4

The result: even standing still you are moving as fast as someone who is walking briskly. Better yet, if you walk briskly you’re really moving and making up ground.

I say all of that to say this….

Spending time with an experienced Coach or Mentor is an opportunity to step on a ‘travelator’ for your life or business. The strategies, insights and advice will often move you along faster and with less effort than if you didn’t have this valuable resource.

Then, if you decide to put more effort into your journey you’ll move from where you are to the next point faster giving you time to relax, reflect or even cheer on the people who chose to do things a different (harder?) way.

I’m also a believer in the saying “it’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey” That said, there are times where I’d rather use my energy to cheer others on at the destination over struggling to get there.

Puzzle me this, puzzle me that….

Have you read a book or attended a conference, workshop or seminar where you were shown strategies to get ahead BUT you haven’t put them in place?

Do you have a desire to help more people, make more money or feel more fulfilment but just don’t feel like you’re moving as fast as you know you want to?

If so, it’s time to be accountable. First, to yourself. Next to someone who can support you, encourage you and give you sound advice from experience.  If money is a challenge, there are a number of inexpensive or free ways to get started.  It can be as simple as going to Google and searching for a free coaching service. If you are serious about making progress for yourself and your business then (if you’re in the UK or USA) check out The Business Wealth Club. I also offer a 40 minute “i2insight” session that I don’t charge for BUT I do ask you to make a small contribution to one of the charities that I support. To register for a session simply go to www.bit.ly/i2insight01

So get moving today and get more of what YOU want out of YOUR life.

The not so secret, secret to creating revenue

If you want to increase revenue and earnings, then read on

If you think you’ve heard it all before then this is the right time to hear and listen one more time.  Maybe the problem is that either you didn’t get the result you wanted OR you got the result and are ready to get more. 

For some people the reason that they haven’t experienced all of the benefits of what they have learned is that they didn’t connect with the inner wisdom and insight (to which we all have access) to produce the long lasting behaviors that come from knowing. 

There’s an old saying,

“To know and not DO, is the same as not knowing”

Maybe, like me, you’ve spent tens of thousands of pounds on personal and professional development.  Maybe you’ve not spent as much money but you’ve invested your most precious resource – time.  In either case the investment was made with the expecation that you actually GET something from it.

In many cases what you wanted was the tangible benefit in the form of money.

Note: I realise that ‘money’ is rarely the REAL outcome that people want.  Money is more often a vehicle, pathway or means to achieve a deeper need…. freedom, significance, connection, contribution etc.

Meanwhile, in the ‘real world’ it still comes down to ‘pounds and pence’ or ‘dollars and cents’… aka income, revenue, earnings and benefits. And this is where the not so secret, secret to generating or increasing revenue is THE rule.

Are you ready for it?  Now, be prepared because it’s just one word that is the fruit of a tree that has deep, deep roots. By itself it will ensure that you are able to generate revenue, cash, dinero, pounds and pence, dollars and cents.

VALUE

Yes, that’s it. Create VALUE.

By the way, if you stop reading now, you’ll miss out on the components of value that allow you to know the what, who, when, where and how’s that that take the ‘valuable’ idea from inception all the way to income.

I’d like to invite you to join me and people just like you on a journey to learn and apply the art of creating value.  Over the next few weeks, we’re going on a journey where you’ll become aware of the ‘big picture’ and the concept of value creation and you’ll take a look at and experience the inner workings of

  • value creation – through one of your ideas
  • application of your best idea – implementation
  • realising and experiencing your desired benefit and outcome – for now, let’s say it’s income

As you have already noted, this blog is free.  I’m sharing what I know and although some people may want to use my services because they value what I do, you are not required to part with any cash to read the blog.  It’s part of the FREEconomy on the web that is there to edify and educate.

If you are looking for a get rich quick scheme then you’re in the wrong place.  If you are the kind of person that realises that it takes time to be an overnight success, then you’re in the right place.

I say all of that to say this…..

The answers are simple. Applying them takes time, discipline and focus. 

EVERYONE who has achieved sustainable success paid the price.

Some have achieved greatness through knowing themesleves and following their hearts and inner wisdom. They attended the ‘school of hard knocks’ and the ‘university of life’  and didn’t follow blogs, go on retreats or have subscriptions to online business resourses. BUT they did leave clues. They did leave journals and notes of things to do and things to avoid. That’s where you have the advantage that they didn’t have…. you can learn from them through blogs, training courses and subscriptions to online business development resources

This series of blogs will share those clues with you and give you strategies that will allow YOU to connect with the path and meaning that is right for you. Another not so secret, secret is that

The answer isn’t the answer.  The insight that is gained from the journey is THE answer.

I may give you the answers (e.g. that creating value is THE key to increasing or generating more revenue) yet the result is TOTALLY dependent upon whether or not you are able to apply the answer to your situation.  The ‘art of application’ or implementation comes from insight, skills and experience that you probably don’t have the time to develop them AND make the money you want to make in the short to medium term.  That’s where I’ve created value for my clients and customers.  I felt the pain, paid the price and developed the skills and experience over 25 years just so that you don’t have to.  Hence, clients pay me to walk with them and lead them to personal insights while (at the same time) making money and benefitting from our partnership.

Maybe we can journey together, sharing answers and insights through this series of blogs.  It will be fun and you’ll gain a few things that will save and make you money.

Puzzle me this puzzle me that….

Do you ever recall being told the answer to a problem but you ingored it? Maybe it was your partner, your parents, a colleague or a stranger.  We all have ‘something’ within us that chooses to rebel. Often we feel better when we find the solution for ourselves.

Ask yourself “Why didn’t I listen to [insert person’s name here]” and share your thoughts and insights below. 

You’ll find that you are not alone.  In fact you may find that your insights will create value to you and others and will, in turn, bring people to you as part of the journey of creating value and turning it into more revenue.