Monday, July 27, 2009

How can clients take me seriously without a certification?

I just met with a potential vendor for a service I'm thinking of using. He's not a good fit for my business but he threw out an interesting argument.

He made it known all of the MBAs and other certifications he's received over the years from some very prestigious organizations and schools. I find this very interesting for a number of reasons.

  1. Your certifications and degrees are features and I don't care (I need benefits)
  2. Your certifications also don't mean anything to me, so again, I don't care
Case in point: CPT, ACE, CI-CPT, NFPT, ACSM, ISSA, NCSF-CPT, NSCA-CPT. These are all certifications and organizations that will give you letters after your name, but it's likely most people would not know they are for personal fitness trainers. Even those who do know likely don't know the differences.

A personal fitness trainer should help me lose weight or make me look like the guy in a magazine. That's the bottom line. I don't care about your certifications or the school you attended.

No, the vendor I just met with did not sway me with his certifications and degrees. They are meaningless to me unless he can back it up with results.

Don't let a lack of certification slow you down in business. Get the training you need and then some experience, but don't rely on a piece of paper to prove competency because it won't.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

It Takes Backbone to Lead the Life You Want

In the movie "Revolutionary Road" Kate Winslet's character, April Wheeler, tells her husband in frustration "It takes backbone to lead the life you want." That phrase rings true for me and many of the clients I work with.

Do you desire to get out of debt, stop working at a job that simply drains you for the majority of your life, just so you can retire one day?

If that's the life you want to live, have at it. But I'm with the camp that's chosen to act out on the parts of their life that are out of whack.

Wake up! If it's easy, it's probably not worth doing!

Go out right NOW and make something happen. Every second you sit there and do nothing you're going backwards.

Grow some backbone and LIVE!

Monday, July 6, 2009

Unlike the President, You can Keep Your Promises

It's frustrating to get behind a president and vote for him for the promises he makes. Once he gets to office and finds the political culture too bogged down to make any promises we second guess our decision.

Unlike the U.S. president, you have a much easier time standing behind your promises.

I just met an architectural printer who has never been late delivering drawings to his clients . . . until last week.

So when they were complete he didn't mail them like he normally does; he put someone on an airplane to hand deliver.

While he may have lost money on that transaction, he made up for his lateness and likely gained a client for life.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Life and Money Outside the Box

Would you classify yourself as an independent thinker? Would you say that you are a visionary? Your thought-life has direct implications on your real life, so what do you think about? In researching the characteristics of millionaires, independent thinking and casting vision are common denominators.

Millionaires think differently about everything – not just money – because they know that conforming to social norms is a recipe for mediocrity. From how they spend their time to how they use their energy, these people identify what is important to them and then go about pursuing it.

We tend to sensationalize millionaires in our culture, believing they all have private jets, homes around the world, and heated toilet seats. In truth, the typical millionaire in our country observes what works and doesn’t work, then casts vision for his or her financial future.

What works? Saving and investing money, making wise purchases, living with a purpose for monthly income, and helping others. What doesn’t work? Trying to borrow your way to wealth, having a “keeping up with the Joneses” mentality, following the herd, and being self-centered.

We’ve all heard the phrase “think outside the box,” and most of us recognize that we’re at our creative best when we avoid groupthink. What if instead of just thinking outside the box, you lived outside the box? What if the way you approached all of your financial decisions took into account what you want to accomplish for your life – not just tomorrow, but also ten years from now?

Thinking independently requires we get away from the noise and clutter in our media. Having a vision means sitting down and honestly deciding what you want out of this life. Creativity and a positive attitude accompany those who know what they want. They are the ones who align their beliefs and values with their actions somewhere outside the box.