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How Twitter Messed Up Everything

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How Twitter Messed Up Everything

Twitter messed everything up and I love it. Talk about equaling the playing field between the little guy and big business. Twitter’s 300 million users spread their wings about 500 million times every day using this short message social channel. With nearly half of the tweets generated from mobile, it’s no wonder small businesses are making it a challenge for big business to keep up; and that’s just one reason. But keep running hard little tweeter, big bird business is getting wise to us.

Exactly how much can you say in 140 characters on Twitter? Whether you are a small player or big business, you get the same amount of real estate; 160 characters was the SMS text message limit, so the founders thought the 140 character limit was good. Although big business is able to dump big money into advertising dollars on Twitter, it’s not ad money that generates the biggest bang. People sharing ideas, product reviews, advice, inspiration and real life relationships and experiences with products and services are what hits a homerun with other Tweeps (users of the social media giant). And if you get to be a pro at building relationships, 140 characters at a time, it can be a grand slam for your business too.

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A Powerful Business Idea - Giving

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A Powerful Business Idea - Giving

I never realized how powerful, motivational and inspirational one little red book, one email and one long distance exchange could play in my life, but that exact time in my life, September 30th, 2013, was a pivotable point in my career.

The first email contact I made with Bob Burg, author of The Go-Giver (coauthored by John David Mann), was brief. I wrote, “Dear Bob, Literally standing in Barnes and Noble, reading the first few pages of Go-Giver, and I am hooked. Any advice for an up and coming speaker?” While I was hoping to get an answer, I was not expecting to get one in under 30 minutes. In addition to the wonderful advice provided by Bob, it was obvious it was not a “canned” response, leading me to believe Bob truly was a giver, his real life principles mirroring the description of his book, “Heartwarming and inspiring...brings new relevance to the old proverb ‘Give and you shall receive.’” 

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Five Top Tips for Providing 5-star Service

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Five Top Tips for Providing 5-star Service

In order to grow your business and add depth to your client list, your goal should be to create a lasting, memorable and very positive experience for your customer. Long gone are the days of being satisfactory, there is way too much competition out there to be less than stellar or exemplary when it comes to customer service. Additionally, it's no longer just about the product you provide. Service, support, sales, operations and every other department within your organization must work in tandem, delivering the same amazing service to your customer to keep them coming back. According to Shep Hyken, an expert in customer satisfaction, "Customer service is not a department, it's a philosophy." Going above and beyond is an important factor in getting your customer to come back again and again. Your brand is exposed to the market through a multitude of channels. Word of mouth can make or break your business. Search engine results, social media channels and good old conversations with friends can help you build your client list or bust it completely.

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Saddle Up Anyway

Do one thing every day that scares you. Some days that might just be saddling up. When you get a fluttering, butterfly feeling in your gut as you pick up the phone to make a call to a potential client, saddle up, you are in the right place. As you sign up for that business conference that costs more than any educational training that you have ever attended, congratulations again for saddling up, you are heading in the right direction. When you make a commitment to better the relationships in your life and that involves telling someone close to you, your real feelings, saddle up and share your feelings.

Courage is being scared to death...and saddling up anyway.
— John Wayne

Things that are new and different are sometimes scary. Don't avoid the fear or the challenge, embrace it. As you start to embrace it more, saddling up will become easier. Opportunity has a way of disguising itself in a blanket of fear. As you approach a fearful or scary situation in your life, take a moment before you saddle up, and find courage in these important factors:

  1. You are good enough to succeed and you will succeed if you work your plan.
  2. You have value and are worthy of being honored for the work you do every day.
  3. You have a positive impact on those around you and what you do is important.
  4. The difference between success and failure is sometimes simply saddling up.
The difference between success and failure is sometimes simply saddling up.

As you saddle up daily, you will continue to grow and you will forge new habits.  Your life will stop being a series of tasks and to-do lists to complete.  Instead, life will be a continuing series of adventures. challenges and opportunities with amazing rewards. The benefits of saddling up in the face of fear are huge and include:

  1. Personal growth - get out of the old routines and ruts you are in.
  2. New opportunities - a greater chance for happiness, success and fulfillment.
  3. Momentum - action will help you develop personally and professional.
  4. Perspective - the view from the saddle will constantly change when moving forward.
Complacency, average and good enough will have a challenge keeping up with you when you get in the saddle and ride off into the sunset.

Avoid the temptation to do nothing at all. Doing nothing is safe, comfortable, easy and will get you absolutely nowhere. There are very few rewards when you do nothing. The enemy of nothing is saddling up. Complacency, average and good enough will have a challenge keeping up with you when you get in the saddle and ride off into the sunset.


Doug is available to present his "Better Relationships, Better Business" message to your organization. Please click the picture for more information about Doug's keynote speaking.

Doug is available to present his "Better Relationships, Better Business" message to your organization. Please click the picture for more information about Doug's keynote speaking.

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6 Inspiring Quotes That Have Stood the Test of Time (and my mom).

A challenging morning can be made less difficult by reading a few inspirational or motivational quotes. Sources for inspiration can be found in the quotes of former presidents, successful business people, inventors or even your parents. A deeper meaning for each quote can be determined by what is going on in your life at any given time. 

These quotes have helped guide me during challenging times, times of failure and times of victory. I hope they have significance in your life as well. As you read the quotes, let them simmer in your head. Allow each quote an opportunity to find meaning with you.

Whether you think you can, or think you can’t, you are right.
— Henry Ford

Your brain is an incredibly powerful organ. Electrical impulses fire off at incredible speeds and if we don't learn how to work the mechanics of our brain properly, it could possibly work against us, letting fear of failure or fear of the unknown block our way to success.  Feed your brain with positive self-talk, happy thoughts and keep yourself thinking about success (however you define it). You are in control of your behavior and your thoughts. 

Trust yourself. You know more than you think you do.
— Dr. Benjamin Spock

What does your gut tell you? The vast majority of the time you have the tools to make decisions on your own. What is good for someone else might not be good for you, so rely more on your ability to make decisions, taking your best interest at heart. When you trust yourself, you start to build more self-confidence. Ultimately, this will benefit you as well. When you make a wrong decision, get value from the lessoned learned, grow from it and allow it to help you trust yourself even more.

If I have nine hours to cut down a tree, I would spend six hours sharpening my axe.
— Abraham Lincoln

Preparation is very important, but there is a fine line between preparation and procrastination. Be wise enough to know the difference when it comes to you making decisions and taking action. Write down a list of the actions that you are fearful of. Maybe you are afraid of cold calls, public speaking, networking, making decisions, etc.  If these are troubling areas for you, when it comes to taking action, be sensitive to your inability to move forward. Prepare to be the best you possible, but don't wait for perfection. If you do, it will never come.

Anyone that has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.
— Albert Einstein

Scientists, inventors, visionaries and entrepreneurs understand the importance of making mistakes. Learn the valuable lessons that mistakes and missteps can create. Look back to all the amazing things that you have been able to accomplish in your lifetime. You have earned many achievements. I can assure you that you did not go from point A to point B without a few, if not many, mistakes. Mistakes made is the Universe's way of asking, "Congratulations for stepping outside your comfort zone, what did you learn?" 

Some people come into your life as blessings. Other people come into your life as lessons.
— Mother Teresa

Not everyone you come in contact with will be your friend, no matter how awesome you may think you are. I had a tough time with this one. People come into your life for a reason. Personally, I'd prefer to meet someone with the hope that they are a blessing in my life, as I would hope to be a blessing in their life as well. Unfortunately, that is not always the case. Think of the relationships you started over the past few years. Are all of there people still in your life as a positive influence?  Probably not. Appreciate the fact that some people are placed in your life as a way for you to grow. Do not see this as a negative. I have learned several valuable virtues including patience, diligence and perseverance from people that I no longer have relationships with, but needed them in my life at that specific time, to teach me these values.

Show me your friends and I’ll tell you who you are.
— RosaLea Finstein (Doug's Mom)

My Mom, a frequent participant in the comments section of this blog, has provided a generous amount of content for my Nice Guys Finish First speaking and writing platforms. I will often label a quote, "Doug's Mom."  Although many of the quotes are tongue and cheek, they all have a deeper meaning with multiple interpretations. Although the exact origin of this quote is unknown, this "show me your friends" quote dates back, for me,  to her mother, my grandmother. I never had the honor of knowing her during my lifetime. Both professionally and personally you are who you associate with. Align yourself with positive, caring, empathetic people if you want to be a positive, caring and empathetic person. When you are working towards a goal, it is always a good idea to associate with others who have reached similar goals so you can learn from them. It may require effort to separate from some of your "negative" influences, as they might, at times, be disguised as things like television, Lazy Boy chairs or even a persuasive friend. 

There are many great sources for finding inspiration. Social media channels including Twitter and Instagram can provide great inspiration. Search engines like Google provide an "Images" tab for their query results to help me visualize the quotes I select for inspiration and motivation. Websites like BrainyQuote.com are wonderful as sources for content as well. Good stuff in equals good stuff out, and inspirational quotes are a great way to kickstart your thinking. 

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