7 inspirational quotes about experience

Education is a fine thing but absolutely nothing beats experience.

There is nothing anyone can tell you that will be more valuable to you than doing it for yourself, getting your fingers burned and learning from the experience.

You’ll forget many things you were taught in a classroom but you won’t forget your mistakes, mishaps and the experience you got from them.

So don’t worry about making mistakes for mistakes can be pure gold, providing you don’t repeat them too often.

From mistakes, you’ll get experience and experience is a valuable and much sought after commodity.

As a hiring manager, I value people with experience. The more experience you have the less likely you are to make mistakes whilst you’re on my payroll. So it’s good business to hire for experience I think.

However let me add, I’m not dismissing the value of education. I can tell you now that education is important too dear reader.

Learning is an investment in you and it can pay great dividends.

The higher your level of education, the more you can earn potentially. Learning is a lifelong process, so don’t forget you must always keep your knowledge current.

And if you have both experience and knowledge then you can go as far as your ambition and determination will take you.

Here are seven inspirational quotes about experience to reinforce today’s message.

Quotes about experience:

  1. The only source of knowledge is experience. ~Albert Einstein
  2. Experience is simply the name we give our mistakes. ~Oscar Wilde
  3. Be brave. Take risks. Nothing can substitute experience. ~Paulo Coelho
  4. People grow through experience if they meet life honestly and courageously. This is how character is built. ~Eleanor Roosevelt
  5. Experience is the teacher of all things. ~Julius Caesar
  6. If you want to know the taste of a pear, you must change the pear by eating it yourself. If you want to know the theory and methods of revolution, you must take part in revolution. All genuine knowledge originates in direct experience. ~Mao Zedong
  7. Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved. ~Helen Keller

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Why you should teach your children that failure doesn’t matter

Why you should teach your children that failure doesn't matter1. What is success?

We all want our children to reach their full potential, don’t we?

We want our children to lead lives in which they’re happy and fulfilled, I’m sure you’ll agree dear reader.

My definition of success is, ‘continually doing the best I can to exploit my full potential whilst making sure that I enjoy each and every day as it comes along‘.

I don’t want to live forever but I do want to live right now.

There are many things I want. Firstly, I want to enjoy the work I do. I want to be stretched, growing in character and strength all the time. And even as an increasingly mature adult, I remain keen to learn something new every day. If I keep learning, I won’t become old before my time.

My philosophy about life and success I gained from my parents and it’s something I try to pass on to the next generation.

Essentially my philosophy is that it’s better to try and fail than it is to spend the rest of my life wondering what might have been.

If I have a go, either I’ll succeed or I’ll learn a valuable lesson. And if it proves to be a lesson then it will be one I won’t forget. In other words, I can’t lose.

2. There’s no such thing as a failure:

There are two things you should always remember about what we refer to as failure:-

  1. There’s no such thing as failure. Just outcomes you didn’t want and opportunities to learn and try again.
  2. Failure is an outcome; it’s never a person. A person cannot be a failure, ever!

Unfortunately, we often label people as failures, and that label’s burden can become something difficult to bear and even harder to shake off. Parents and teachers can often be guilty of this, however unintentionally.

Teach children that it’s much more important to try and they should never, ever worry about failure.

If children can appreciate that failure is just an outcome other than what they wanted, they’ll be better placed to learn the lessons and do better next time.

And those lessons learned will be more valuable to children than anything an adult can tell them.

If you tell me the stove is hot I may not remember. If I burn my hand on a hot stove, I’ll only do it once and I’ll never forget. That’s a valuable commodity known as experience.

If we keep trying we’ll learn and if we keep learning eventually we can all be successful.

3. Teach your children well:

The best way to teach children about success is to teach them that failure is not a bad thing. In fact, it’s an essential ingredient for achieving success.

Teach children never to fear failure. As long as they learn the lessons then failure doesn’t matter at all.

So teach your children to have a go and to make sure they enjoy the experience along the way too.

Let them know that either they’ll succeed or they’ll learn a lesson. Either way, they’ll gain and of course, they’ll grow in character as well.

And remember also; we can only truly appreciate success if we’ve experienced a few failures along the road. And to fail occasionally helps to keep us humble too and that’s no bad thing, is it?

4. Force for good

If you think about it, failure is in fact a force for good.

Failure is simply a natural part of life and learning. No one starts out as a master of their craft. Every successful person started out as a complete beginner.

Everyone fails occasionally and at any given time we’re more likely to fail than we are to succeed.

Learning from failure makes us wiser of course and it makes us tougher too. It builds character.

Failure is never desirable as such but it’s very useful. It’s also inevitable, at least sometimes.

The only way to avoid failure is to avoid risks and challenges and then you cannot learn and you cannot grow as a person. If you never try anything you can never be anything. And what would be the point of that?

Failure5. Secret to success

The secret to success is to use all your unsuccessful experiences as stepping stones to achieving your aims.

Failure is never final and we should not allow an unsuccessful experience to discourage us or cause us to give up. All too often people give up just as they’re on the verge of success.

REMEMBER: Failure is not, nor will it ever be, a person.

Next time your child gets an outcome he or she didn’t want, reassure him or her that though it might be disappointing, it’s not a problem and nor should they think otherwise.

Always reassure them that a failure is simply an opportunity to learn a lesson and try again. However make sure they recognize the lesson to be learned.

Anyone experiencing failure should simply reflect on their actions and the outcome to discover the underlying lesson within.

Then we simply use the knowledge gained to guide future efforts.

Perseverance and persistence will get us there in the end.

Teach your children well but never, ever allow them to believe they’re in any way a failure. Just encourage them to use the experience of undesirable outcomes to be a bit smarter next time.

Do that and you’ll prepare them well for their life ahead.

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33 life lessons learned that are best learned early

Life Lessons LearnedLife lessons learned for most of us are learned the hard way. Here are 33 of those lessons that are best learned at early as possible, ideally in your teens or early 20s.

Life lessons learned:

1. On experiencing life:

Wherever you are, be there. Be present and experience the moment. You’ll remember moments with friends and family all your life, whereas you’re unlikely to remember social media posts moments after you’ve read them. No experience beats having a good laugh with your friends and family.

2. On making choices:

As an adult, you’re free to make your own choices but you must accept any consequences that follow. A wise adult learns to make good choices because the choices you make will dictate the quality of the life you lead. Your choices really matter. Make too many bad ones and your life experiences won’t be very good at all.

3. On the future (1):

Where you’re going is more important than where you’ve been. The past was a series of lessons to be learned. The future is where you’ll spend the rest of your life. You can’t change the past but your future has yet to be written, and you’ve got the pen.

4. On the future (2):

The future is an endless stream of opportunities that you can choose to seize, or not. However poor your past may have been, that doesn’t mean you can’t seize new opportunities and exploit them to your own advantage. You can, with determination and hard work. And, never let anyone discourage you from having a go. Better to try and fail than to spend your life wondering what might have been

5. On asking questions:

Intelligent people ask questions. So, never be afraid to ask questions when you don’t understand something, or when you need clarification. Better to appear a fool momentarily than remain a fool permanently.

6. On attitude:

The greatest disability in life is a bad attitude. If you’ve got one you’d better change it, if you want your life to improve. Attitude matters. An average person with a positive attitude makes a much better employee than a genius with a chip on his or her shoulder.

7. On fairness:

Life isn’t fair. It never has been and it never will be. We’re all dealt a set of cards in life, and all we can do is to play that hand as best as we can. We could get angry about the unfairness of it all or we can just get on and make the best of what we have. The latter approach is much easier on our nerves, in my experience.

8. On bullying:

When you’re having fun at someone else’s expense, remember it may be fun to you, and you may not mean any harm, but for the other person the impact of such an experience can be humiliating, upsetting and it can cause significant, lasting and often permanent psychological damage to that person. So remember, it isn’t fun at all, if it isn’t fun for the other person. If it isn’t fun for them, it’s actually just bullying. And if you’re bullying, you’re not being cool, you’re being nasty.

9. On judging others (1):

You’re free to judge others if you’re absolutely sure that you’re perfect in every way. If your conclusion is that you’re not quite perfect then why would you expect others to be?

10. On judging others (2):

For everyone life is a struggle. No one is without problems, despite any external signs to the contrary. We just have to keep going for it’s the only way. Life goes on and we must too. If you’ve not walked two miles in someone else’s shoes, you’re not in a position to judge them. So, don’t.

11. On authenticity:

Authenticity is simply being who you are and not trying to be who you think you should be or who you think you’re expected to be. People will respect you for being who you are. An original is always better than a fake.

12. On trust:

Trust takes years to build and seconds to break. And once broken the way you’re seen by others will never be quite the same again. Trust is a valuable and precious commodity. Protect it.

13. On reputation:

Never underestimate the importance of your personal reputation. And if you wouldn’t be happy to read something about yourself on the front pages, don’t do it.

14. On communication:

If you want to tell anyone anything, speak softly and you’ll find that they’re much more likely to listen to you.

15. On success:

No one can ever be a failure but everyone can be a success. Failure is not a person it’s just an outcome you didn’t want. It’s also an opportunity to try again with greater knowledge and experience. Everyone can achieve some degree of success, if they believe in themselves, they’re determined and they’re willing to work hard.

16. On priorities:

We all have the same amount of time. 168 hours a week. It’s how we choose to use it that dictates whether we achieve anything significant or not. Time is a resource, pure and simple. So, decide on your priorities and allocate your time accordingly. And just because someone wants a piece of your time, doesn’t mean you’re obliged to give it to them. If it’s not a priority, nor an obligation, just say NO.

17. On watching television:

Few people seem to recognise this but there’s a significant cost to watching television. Not the cost of purchasing the television set or any cable or satellite subscriptions you may have. The real cost is the opportunity cost of your time. That is the time you spend watching television. Time is money and you could be doing something more profitable with your time. Learning something new perhaps or running your own little income-generating side-hustle.

18. On qualifications (1):

Most of the work done by most people in life doesn’t require a college degree at all. If you have one that’s great, but stay humble. A motivated individual with common sense and decent reading, writing and arithmetic skills can succeed in life without one.

19. On qualifications (2):

You may need a college degree to work for an employer but you don’t need one to work for yourself. If it’s your business, you make the rules.

20. On qualifications (3):

Plenty of people graduating from Harvard will end up working for people who didn’t. So, stay humble. Studying at a top university is no guarantee for career success, nor does it guarantee wealth. A Harvard, Oxford, or Cambridge degree may look good on your CV but five years after graduation the only thing that will really matter is what you’ve actually achieved in the workplace since.

21. On experience:

Doing is by far the best way to learn. The classroom is useful, of course, but nothing beats doing and learning from your mistakes. Making mistakes will teach you lessons that you’ll never forget. And learning from your mistakes will give you that valuable commodity known as experience. Knowing the theory is useful, whereas having experience is essential.

22. On employability:

You don’t sell who you are. You sell what you can do and the value you can add. Every job is about doing stuff for other people and delivering results. What is it you can do and what can you confidently deliver? Before you go for any job interview, make sure you have answers to these questions and make sure you can give examples of stuff you’ve actually delivered on previous occasions.

23. On work (1):

Employers can quickly replace you with someone just like you and you’ll be forgotten quickly. So be professional in carrying out your duties, of course, but not at the expense of your own interests or those of your loved ones.

24. On work (2):

Make sure you take good care of yourself. Employers will take everything you give and a bit more besides but if you died tomorrow your job would be posted online before your obituary. You’ll be replaced within days and the memory of your presence won’t last long.

25. On making money:

To make money you have to be doing stuff for other people. To make a serious amount of money you have to be doing stuff for multiple people simultaneously, even when you’re asleep. Sounds impossible but it can be done. For instance, serving the many with your own digital products, sold online, can lead to great wealth.

26. On sales:

Successful selling is not about tricking people into buying something they don’t need. The art of selling is in proactively finding customers who’ve got problems for which your products can provide the ideal solution. If you can offer solutions to problems, you’ll find customers in need of what you have to sell. Find the right customers and a good product will sell itself.

27. On change (1):

It’s easier to remain as you are than it is to change but unless you change your life will not improve. Embracing change is hard but it is well worth the effort.

28. On change (2):

For things to change, you have to change. For things to get better you have to get better. You can become more than you are but it won’t happen by accident. It all starts with you saying, I can; I will; and I won’t stop until I get there. And you must make any changes necessary.

29. On finding a life partner:

You’ll find, as you go through life, that Mr or Miss Perfect doesn’t exist. If you’re looking for a life partner, find someone whose faults you can live with. Yes, you’ll need to enjoy each other’s company. And yes, you’ll need to have things in common. However, everyone you meet will have faults of their own, even if they’re not immediately apparent.

30. On children (1):

When you have young children they need your attention much more than your mobile phone does. Your children should be your priority, particularly in the early years. You’re their role model. Be a positive role model and give them all the attention they deserve. The years pass quickly and your children, good or bad, are your legacy to the world.  Social media can wait. Anything less is simply a disservice to your child.

31. On children (2):

Children need continuity and they need boundaries. They need to be brought up with a set of values too. Fail to give them those things and you fail as a parent. Materialism is no substitute for the things that really matter most.

32. On your social life:

You’ll never fit into every social group, nor should you try. Just focus on finding a group of people that are right for you. In other words, find your tribe. People that are welcoming to you, with interests like yours and personalities that appeal to you. It’s better to be in the company of people that appreciate your company, rather than trying to fit into groups that don’t really want you there at all.

33. On experts:

There are plenty of people referred to as experts whose ideas and recommendations can prove to be stupid beyond belief. Listen to experts by all means but then use your own judgement. Don’t be fooled by people, just because they’ve got an impressive job title. If your instinct says they’re wrong, have the courage of your own convictions and act accordingly. Just because an ‘expert’ said it, doesn’t mean you have to accept it.

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8 Top Business Tips for Success Today

Business Tips for SuccessBusiness tips for success:

I read an article recently about a guy with a college degree who was feeling disillusioned because he couldn’t find a job. At least not one that met his expectations relative to the type of job and income he felt his degree merited.

Well, it’s a tough world out there, as I’m sure you know only too well dear reader, and despite what some people may think, the world doesn’t owe us a living. The world owes us nothing and it’s down to us to make a life for ourselves.

Work is just doing stuff for other people in return for money and there will always be people with stuff that needs doing. So rather than seeking a job, perhaps we’d all be better off if we focused on seeking customers for the services we could provide.

That’s at the heart of what business is all about, providing people with solutions to their problems for profit, and there’s much to be said for becoming an entrepreneur.

So today let’s explore some business tips for success for entrepreneurs.

The advantages of self-employment:

There are many advantages to being self-employed.

For instance, not having to deal with office politics is a big advantage for a start.

And of course, being the beneficiary of all of the proceeds of your hard work is another good reason.

Instead of making a lot of money for other people, you could be making it all for yourself. The harder you work the more you make for yourself too.

Unless you’re a lawyer or an investment banker, the chances are the only way you’ll ever make serious money is through building your own business. Building a business that one day you’ll be able to sell for a lot of money.

However, remember this; you might think that if you’re self-employed then you’re your own boss. Well, that’s not true. The customer is the boss, always.

Serve customers badly and you won’t be serving them for very long, that’s for sure.

The first rule of business is that you must know thy customer.

You must gain a deep understanding of the products, services and marketing that will appeal to your target customer.

One size will not fit all and each market will require a different approach.

Now going into business is not for the faint-hearted. You must be prepared to work very hard, at least in the early days, when you’re trying to establish your business.

However, if you can provide your target customers with real solutions to real problems then you can make serious money.

If someone else is already offering a solution to the target problem then your solution must be better or cheaper than theirs in some way if it is to sell.

Creating great products and offering great customer service is the route to business success.

However never forget your reputation and image. These things matter too.

Make sure you create an image that will appeal to as wide an audience as possible. Running your own business will be a challenge but it can also be extremely rewarding, both financially and in terms of a sense of achievement.

Remember also that running a small business is not a whole lot different to running a large business. The only real difference is one of scale. The key issues are always the same.

So here are some top business tips for success for would-be entrepreneurs:-

Top business tips for success today:

1. Control your costs:

Of the many business tips for success I could suggest, none can be more important than keeping an eye on the money.

Money comes into your business and money goes out. It’s that simple.

However, if you fail to ensure that the former is always greater than the latter, at least for most of the time, then trouble will follow at some point, whatever the size of your business.

A bigger business might be able to weather the storm a bit longer but the consequences of expenditure consistently exceeding income will be the same. Keep losing money and eventually, your business will go bust.

Take every opportunity to maximize your revenue and always keep your costs as low as you can. And never, ever lose sight of cash flow.

Don’t spend money unless it is absolutely necessary.

Ask yourself, do I really need to spend this money? What will I get in return? Can I achieve the same result at less or even no cost?

It might surprise you to learn how frequently it is possible to avoid cost, whilst still doing all the things big businesses do.

The key message here is that you must keep an iron-grip on costs and you must manage cash flow carefully.

2. Do your own market research:

Every product should solve a problem for your customer and you should have some idea of what that problem is and how your product will solve it relative to other products offered by your competition.

Just because you think you’ve got a great product, doesn’t mean customers will see it that way. Your opinion means nothing if there are not enough people willing to buy your product at the price you’re trying to charge for it.

If your product won’t sell then potentially your business could be in trouble.

Perhaps you think you’ve spotted a gap in the market?

If it’s a genuine gap then you might be on to a winner. However, a gap in the market doesn’t always guarantee that there is a market within that gap. Maybe there’s a reason for the gap which you’ve yet to understand.

In business, the trick is to find out what people really want and then offer it to them.

How do you find that out?

One very good way is simply to ask them yourself.

I’m not referring to your family and friends here. They’ll be far too polite to give you any meaningful feedback.

You must talk to real customers, if and when you have them, and potential customers.

You can conduct some of your own market research in your local shopping mall or wherever you think your target customers might congregate. And don’t be shy. Only by actually talking to people can you confirm whether your ideas have real potential.

So, identify some basic questions, stand there with a clipboard and just start asking people, as politely as possible.

Often they’ll be far more helpful than you might expect.

And don’t forget you can always use the Internet too.

Search engines like Google have keyword search tools that are free to use. These tools allow you to get a ‘rough and ready’ measure of what people are searching for and how frequently.

And don’t forget social media. Facebook and Twitter, for instance, can be great channels for asking questions, so you can gauge what people think.

Market research doesn’t have to be expensive. As a small business entrepreneur, it is possible to do it yourself. You don’t have to spend a lot of money on this activity but it’s essential that you do it.

Your results might not be quite as scientific as those produced by the professional market research people, but they will provide you with a rough guide and that’ll probably be good enough in the first instance.

3. Advertising costs money: is there a better way?

Another of the most important business tips for success has to be visibility. I cannot stress highly enough that visibility matters, both for your business and your products. It’s absolutely crucial.

Your products might be the best in the world but they won’t sell at all if potential customers have no idea they exist. Surely that much is obvious.

The question is, how does any business ensure that customers have visibility of its products? The obvious answer is advertising of course.

However, media advertising can be costly, and it’s a cost that new businesses often cannot afford.

One small advert in the back of a glossy magazine can cost you a lot of money and yet you have to ask yourself whether that would be money well spent?

How often do you notice the small advertisements in the back of a magazine? In my case, the answer is not very often.

With so many advertisements competing for my attention, I tend to filter them all out. I’m willing to bet that you do too dear reader.

So, if you’re not careful, money spent on advertising can be money wasted in my experience.

A better approach might be to use some creative thinking with a focus on public relations.

Smart entrepreneurs know that business is show business. It’s all about getting noticed.

For example, the entrepreneur Richard Branson is a brilliant exponent at getting media attention at little or no financial cost to his business.

It helps that he’s a likeable guy of course but he’s also clever and creative in his approach.

If you have an interesting back story perhaps the local press, local radio or even television might be willing to run a story on you and your business and the products you have to offer?

Social media can be a powerful medium for gaining attention for your business too.

Social media is also a useful way of driving traffic to your company’s website, particularly Pinterest which is an incredible tool.

Then there’s using search engine optimization (SEO) techniques on your website content to ensure you drive traffic to your site from the search engines.

Let’s face it, you do need to appear on the first page of a Google search if there’s to be any chance of anyone noticing you and your business through search queries. So, if you can optimize your website for SEO, then you can get enormous amounts of traffic from Google and other search engines, like Bing and Yahoo.

Make sure you offer visitors to your company website the opportunity for signing up for a regular email newsletter. And give them an incentive to sign up.

This could be a free report or perhaps a discount code for one of your products.

How about running a competition using your company’s fan page on Facebook or your company website?

The price of say a smartphone or a Kindle or other desirable electronic device as a prize would be cheaper than the cost of a small advert in a glossy magazine but it’s more likely to get noticed and it’ll probably generate a lot more excitement.

If you have a car or van; don’t forget that it can be emblazoned with your company logo, your website details and product information on the back, sides and front. Even on the roof.

It would be free advertising as you’re driving around.

Park your vehicle at a big event attended by thousands of people and you’re beginning to master the art of guerrilla marketing.

The bottom line is that creative thinking and public relations can produce powerful results in your quest for visibility at a fraction of the cost of advertising. The key message is; be creative.

4. Don’t make yourself indispensable:

The biggest mistake any entrepreneur or business manager can make is to think that every decision should be made by them.

If you’ve started a business from scratch you tend to form an emotional bond with it. It becomes your baby and you become very protective of it.

That’s natural of course but as the business grows you’ll have so many things to do that you couldn’t possibly do them all.

You could try, of course. However, if you try to do everything you’ll find yourself falling behind in key areas like product sourcing, sales and keeping your accounts up to date.

Fall behind, and it becomes very hard to catch up. Potentially it is also very damaging for the business.

So you have to learn the art of delegation.

A good start would be to document every task and process within the business and then create an Operations Manual. This can include everything from the preferred method for answering the phone to completing invoices and dealing with complaints.

It can also include the degree of flexibility which you are delegating to staff, so they can get on with basic tasks allowing you to get on with those activities which are much more important for achieving business success.

No business should be dependent solely on one person.

If it is and that person gets seriously ill or has an accident then obviously the business would be in trouble very quickly and it would struggle.

Delegate basic activities to your staff and you can be sure that the business will continue to function even when you’re not around.

It will also give you a bit more thinking time for steering the company towards bigger and better things.

The key message here is that you must delegate. Never delude yourself into thinking that only you can do a particular task.

5. Charge sensible prices:

If you’re to earn a decent income then any list of business tips for success must stress the importance of knowing the value you can add and know your worth too.

It’s easy when you’re a small business to undervalue your products and your time. The result is that you undercharge for what you have to offer.

This is particularly true when professionals are selling their expertise and time on the basis of a consultancy arrangement.

It’s common for first-timers to lack the confidence to charge what they might perceive to be a high rate for their services.

The problem is that selling things cheaply can be counter-productive because customers then think they’re getting an inferior product or service and can be put off.

It is a fact that price can often be used as a proxy measure for quality when your business is being judged.

You have to be very business-like when considering the pricing of your products and services.

So look at what your competitors are charging and then analyse where you think your products and services fit into the market.

If you struggle with that idea then you can always seek guidance from someone else, like a fellow business owner or your accountant.

However, you must always remember that you must believe in your products and services. If you don’t then why should anyone else?

You must project confidence.

If you don’t have the courage of your convictions then the chances are that your business will never succeed.

Believe in yourself and charge what you’re really worth. Sell yourself on the basis of the value you bring and the value you can add.

6. Make the best use of technology:

Sometimes small business owners think that because they are small they can only act in a small way. However, that can be a mistake.

Don’t be afraid to invest in your business. For instance, investing in up-to-date technology like the right phone system and websites do not have to be expensive but they can be the difference between a customer contacting you or not.

These days no business, large or small, can operate without a website.

And that website needs to be as user-friendly as it possibly can be.

Make sure your website provides customers and potential customers with the opportunity to sign up for a regular email newsletter. And as suggested earlier, offer them an incentive so they do sign up.

Ensure also that your telephone system allows customers to reach you at their first attempt. Certainly, customers won’t make too many attempts to call you before they’ll simply go elsewhere.

If you don’t know how to do all this yourself then go on a course or seek guidance from someone with the right expertise.

Good communications will pay handsome dividends over time.

7. Set goals:

Another in this list of business tips for success, that I want to really stress here, is the importance of goal-setting.

You have to know what it is you’re trying to achieve if you’re to have any chance of successfully achieving it.

Never set your sights too low either. Set yourself a challenge and then put all your energy into achieving it.

Once you’ve set a goal then you need to establish a plan as to how it is going to be achieved.

For instance, if your goal is to achieve a certain level of turnover over the next year, you have to break that down into the small steps you will need to take for it to be achieved.

How many sales will you need to achieve each day, each week and each month?

What implications will those sales targets have for production?

Do you have enough sales staff to generate that amount of business?

And so on.

Always create a plan and review it regularly making adjustments as and when necessary.

8. If you got a great idea then do something with it:

How many great ideas never see the light of day because the person with the idea fails to do anything about it?

And how many times does someone with an idea see someone else come along with the same idea and beat them to market?

Let me give you an example. Two years ago I thought up a great idea for a teeshirt slogan. However, I was busy and so in the end I didn’t do anything about it. Fast forward two years, and the other day I noticed one of the best selling teeshirts on Amazon was one bearing the slogan that I’d thought up.

Someone else had the idea too, but they actually did something about it. And they’re now benefitting from the income generated. From my standpoint, great opportunity missed.

Procrastination stops many entrepreneurs from cashing in on a great idea. Don’t let this be you.

If you’re waiting for the perfect time to do anything you will be waiting for the rest of your life.

Now is always the perfect time to start.

Don’t wait until you think the economy will be better or your children have left home or some other arbitrary barrier.

The right time to start your business is right now.

So go for it. Yes, you’ll make mistakes. You won’t get everything right the first time. You won’t become an instant millionaire either.

However, by getting started you’ll be heading in the right direction and you’ll learn along the way.

Hard work combined with implementing good ideas will get you there eventually.

Business Tips for SuccessConcluding Remarks:

I hope these business tips for success prove useful to you dear reader.

However please note, this blog post was not intended to be a comprehensive guide for entrepreneurs.

You’ll find many excellent books on the subject and I recommend that you make a point of reading as many of them as you can because educating yourself is always a good idea. It doesn’t have to be formal education. Self-education can be just as good in practice. And then, of course, you can start creating your own list of business tips for success.

And the best form of education in my experience is to learn by doing. You will make mistakes but the lessons learned from those mistakes will be far more valuable to you than anything anyone can teach you in a classroom.

Being an entrepreneur can be a roller coaster ride but it can be a fantastic and enriching experience too. So if you fancy it, go for it.

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25 thoughtful quotes about politics and power

Quotes about Politics and PowerToday I’ve curated some thoughtful quotes about politics and power. In doing so, I’m hoping it’ll get you thinking about, and perhaps even participating in, something that rules our lives but isn’t given anywhere near the scrutiny it merits.

Politicians on all sides frequently take us all for fools and the sad thing is we let them. That must change, surely?

They do what they do because they know that they can get away with it, most of the time at least. It’s time we all let them know that we will not allow them to get away with it anymore.

Politics has become nothing more than show-business for people lacking in talent and an engaging personality. They all seem to get rich, without any real value to our lives at all.

So, let your local politician know that you’ve got your eye on them and you won’t be putting up with any nonsense.

Quotes about politics and power (1-15):

  1. Don’t vote. It only encourages them. ~Billy Connolly
  2. In politics, stupidity is not a handicap. ~Napoléan Bonaparte
  3. We have, I fear, confused power with greatness. ~Stewart Udall
  4. We have the best Government that money can buy. ~Mark Twain
  5. I love to go to Washington, if only to be near my money. ~Bob Hope
  6. We hang petty thieves and appoint great ones to public office. ~Aesop
  7. For the powerful, crimes are those that others commit. ~Noam Chomsky
  8. If God had wanted us to vote, he would have given us candidates. ~Jay Leno
  9. A politician is a fellow who’ll lay down your life for his country. ~Texas Guinan
  10. An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last. ~Winston Churchill
  11. A lot has been said about politics; some of it complimentary, but most of it accurate. ~Eric Idle
  12. I have a problem with people who take the Constitution loosely and the Bible literally. ~Bill Maher
  13. Just because you don’t take an interest in politics doesn’t mean politics won’t take an interest in you. ~Pericles
  14. Absolute power does not corrupt absolutely, absolute power attracts the corruptible. ~Frank Herbert
  15. The reason there are so few female politicians is that it is too much trouble to put makeup on two faces. ~Maureen Murphy

Quotes about politics and power (16-25):

  1. Anyone who is capable of getting themselves made President should on no account be allowed to do the job. ~Douglas Adams
  2. Instead of giving a politician the keys to the city, it might be better to change the locks. ~Doug Larson
  3. You have to remember one thing about the will of the people: it wasn’t long ago that we were swept away by the Macarena. ~Jon Stewart
  4. Too bad that all the people who know how to run the country are busy driving taxicabs and cutting hair. ~George Burns
  5. There are many men of principle in both parties in America, but there is no party of principle. ~Alexis de Tocqueville
  6. Politicians are the same all over. They promise to build a bridge even where there is no river. ~Nikita Khrushchev
  7. Those who are too smart to engage in politics are punished by being governed by those who are dumber. ~Plato
  8. Politics is supposed to be the second-oldest profession. I have come to realize that it bears a very close resemblance to the first. ~Ronald Reagan
  9. I remember when I first came to Washington. For the first six months, you wonder how the hell you ever got here. For the next six months, you wonder how the hell the rest of them ever got here. ~Harry S Truman
  10. Take our politicians: they’re a bunch of yo-yos. The presidency is now a cross between a popularity contest and a high school debate, with the encyclopedia of clichés the first prize. ~Saul Bellow

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21 inspirational quotes about life that will help you succeed

  1. Inspirational quotes about lifeYou only live once, but if you do it right once is enough. ~Mae West
  2. One day your life will flash before your eyes. Make sure it’s worth watching. ~Gerard Way
  3. Whether you think you can or think you can’t, you’re right. ~Henry Ford
  4. The man who has confidence in himself gains the confidence of others. ~Hasidic Proverb
  5. What you lack in talent can be made up with desire, hustle and giving 110% all the time. ~Don Zimmer
  6. You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream. ~C.S. Lewis
  7. The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing. ~Walt Disney
  8. Accept no one’s definition of your life; define yourself. ~Harvey Fierstein
  9. Accept responsibility for your life. Know that it is you who will get you where you want to go, no one else. ~Les Brown
  10. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Wishing is not enough; we must do. ~Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
  11. The only way it gets better is when you get better as whatever you do. ~Jim Rohn
  12. Challenges are what make life interesting and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful. ~Joshua J. Marine
  13. Failure will never overtake me if my determination to succeed is strong enough. ~Og Mandino
  14. We may encounter many defeats but we must not be defeated. ~Maya Angelou
  15. For every reason it’s not possible, there are hundreds of people who have faced the same circumstances and succeeded. ~Jack Canfield
  16. Things work out best for those who make the best of how things work out. ~John Wooden
  17. You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great. ~Zig Ziglar
  18. There are no limits to what you can accomplish, except the limits you place on your own thinking. ~Brian Tracy
  19. We generate fears while we sit. We overcome them by action. ~Dr Henry Link
  20. If you are working on something that you really care about, you don’t have to be pushed. The vision pulls you. ~Steve Jobs
  21. Today’s accomplishments were yesterday’s impossibilities. ~Robert H. Schuller

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Why an investment in knowledge pays dividends

KnowledgeAn investment in knowledge pays the best interest. ~Benjamin Franklin

You don’t get paid for the hour; you get paid for the value you put into the hour. It’s important everyone understands that important distinction dear reader.

You get paid for the value you add.

The more value you can add the more you will get paid.

It’s really that simple.

If you can solve problems for people with the skills you’ve got, then you can earn an excellent living.

The question is what underpins your skills and your ability to add value? The answer to that question would be knowledge, of course.

Knowledge comes from learning and learning is a lifelong process.

The quote at the top of this post from the venerable Benjamin Franklin reminds us of the importance of learning. Learning is an investment in ourselves.

We all have enormous capacity to consume and retain knowledge in our heads and that knowledge is then a currency with which we can trade. The more knowledge we have the more value we can add.

When it comes to investing, nothing will pay you a better dividend than making sure you have a good education. And I stress, it’s a lifelong process. It doesn’t end when you leave school or college.

And it’s not about whether or not you went to college or university. Important as they may be, learning can be achieved in many ways.

Knowledge can be gained through reading books; listening to audio and video tutorials, and challenging yourself to master anything that appeals to you. Learning from hands-on experience, making mistakes and learning the lessons you can take from any mistakes you’ve made.

In particular, if you want to master the game of money and all matters financial then you need to become a seeker of financial knowledge and know-how.

You need to become a reader and a keen student of finance. To be successful in investing, of course, you really need to know what you’re doing. You need financial education.

Ignorance can prove to be very costly indeed. And that’s true in every aspect of your life.

Getting an education may seem expensive but it’s nowhere near as expensive as ignorance.

So, if you’re not already, become a reader.

The investment in yourself is well worth the effort and it’ll pay you a handsome dividend.

As the late, great Jim Rohn once said, “Work harder on yourself than you do on your job.”

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Public Speaking: The Power of the Pause

Public Speaking_The Power of the Pause

Today I offer you a tip for public speaking: the power of the pause. This is a great tip from Brian Tracy.

If your aim is to be successful then mastering the art of public speaking is an essential skill you must develop.

If you’re a successful, high profile individual you can’t avoid speaking in public, at least occasionally. However much you might try to resist it I’m afraid it’s like trying to hold back the tide. It can’t be done.

However, I recognize that public speaking can be a bit daunting even for people who are otherwise quite confident.

So if you lack confidence in this area then don’t worry. You’re not alone I promise you. Most people feel just like you do when they find themselves standing in front of a crowd faced with the expectation that they’ll be able to say something meaningful and present it in an interesting and engaging way too.

Key to being interesting is developing your public speaking technique. The more you practice and develop your technique the more confident you’ll feel when you step up to the lectern.

One way to improve your public speaking technique is to learn from some of the best speakers around and then copy what they do. And Brian Tracy is an excellent speaker worthy of study. Personally, I find him both interesting and inspiring.

So if Brian has something to say then listening to him is worthy of your time I believe.

In the short but excellent video embedded with this post, Brian Tracy offers some useful advice on the subject of public speaking. In particular, using the power of a pause to emphasize or reinforce a point being made.

An important element of public speaking is making sure that the underlying messages resonate with your audience. If they take away three or four powerful messages then you’ll have done your job and done it well.

If you want to improve your public speaking skills then I recommend you watch this video.

You’ll learn some helpful tips, as well as one of the little known secrets used by top public speakers.

Once again I must say, Brian’s short video is well worth a few minutes of your time.

Public Speaking: The Power of the Pause

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3 of life’s lessons learned you really should know

Lifes Lessons LearnedMany regular readers will be familiar with the three life’s lessons learned that I’ve included here today, but that won’t be true for everyone, of course. It all comes down to experience really, wouldn’t you agree?

Well dear reader, please don’t feel that you must make every mistake yourself in order to learn.

Learning directly from the mistakes of others is a perfectly valid strategy. You can also listen to and learn from lessons others have learned the hard way.

There’s no finer education than the University of Life, School of Hard Knocks.

So, allow me to offer you three of life’s lessons learned, that you’d do well to bear in mind.

1. Money can’t make you happy:

If you’re not happy without money then having money won’t change how you feel about yourself.

We experience happiness not through the things we purchase but through our personal philosophy, as well as our relationships with other people. Human beings are social animals, and we all need other people.

If you want to be happy you must never lose sight of the most important people in your life, i.e. family and friends.

Spend time with them and enjoy their company, especially your children. Make the most of every minute you have with your loved ones.

Yes, of course, go out there and make some money. I’m not suggesting money doesn’t matter because it does. It’s up there with oxygen for sustaining a life worth living.

So you must manage your money carefully and invest some of it too.

Enjoy some of your money, of course, and buy nice things occasionally too. Life’s too short not to enjoy at least some of your hard-earned cash from time to time.

However never focus on money and work, to the exclusion of your family and friends. Without them you have nothing. Money is important but the people in your life are far more important.

You could have all the money in the world but without your friends and loved ones you’d have nothing at all.

Lifes Lessons Learned2. Life is too short to do a job you hate:

You should never do anything for money alone.

Yes, you need an income and yes, it’s nice to have plenty of money in your pocket. Let’s face it we’d all like to have plenty of money, wouldn’t we? That’s human nature.

However, no amount of money will compensate you for the drudgery of doing a job you really hate.

If you don’t enjoy what you’re doing, you won’t do it well. And if you don’t do it well eventually you’ll come unstuck. It will all end in tears. Now is that really what you want, dear reader?

Remember this also; one day, you will die. You’re not going to live forever, nor would you want to.

What a shame it would be if on your death bed you felt you’d completely wasted your life. Now, how bad would that be?

So find a job you enjoy.

That really is important. You’ll spend one-third of your life in work and that’s a long time to be doing something you really hate.

And if you haven’t found a job you love yet? Then just keep looking, until you find something you’d do for free if you couldn’t earn a living at it.

When it comes to a job, money shouldn’t be your primary focus. Find the right job; do it well and add real value; and the money will follow, all in good time.

3. Greed can lead to expensive mistakes:

There’s a classic telephone scam, which never fails to catch some people out.

The way it works is a salesman or woman working in a ‘boiler room’ somewhere offshore calls you with an offer for you to purchase an asset at a price which they’ll tell you will guarantee you an enormous profit.

It might be stocks and shares or it might be plots of land in some faraway place but the underlying message is always the same.

Essentially they’ll tell you that next to no one knows about the availability of this asset just yet but when they do the price of the asset will go through the roof and just keep on heading in an upwardly direction.

They’ll tell you that whatever they have to offer is a steal and that you have the opportunity to get in on the ground floor and make an absolute killing but you have to buy today or you’ll miss out.

The salespeople always sound friendly, very plausible and they’ll make it all sound very professional. They’ll even take a little time to make you feel that really they’re trustworthy.

This scam plays on our greed and our gullibility.

We believe what we’re being told because we want to believe it. We just love the idea that we might get something for nothing too.

However if you part with your money, when presented with such an offer, that‘s the last you’ll see of it.

The asset will be worthless or even non-existent. You’ll have been scammed.

Furthermore, if you’re foolish enough to buy, you’ll also be put on a ‘sucker list’ which means you’ll get inundated with similar calls from other high-pressure salespeople offering similar ‘deals‘.

In reality, any deal that sounds too good to be true will always prove to be too good to be true.

There’s no easy money to be had anywhere. Take that from someone who’s spent a lot of time looking.

And anyway, think about it, if it was that good a deal why would they be telling you?

If there really was a killing to be made, they’d simply invest their own money and bag the ‘profit’ for themselves, surely?

Never allow yourself to fall for it.

And never, ever allow yourself to be bounced into buying anything just because they tell you that this deal is only available today.

In sales language that’s known as a ‘call to action‘. It’s the oldest sales trick in the sales handbook.

The idea is to bounce you into making a purchasing decision before you have time to think it all through properly.

Don’t be a mug and don’t be foolish enough to line other peoples’ pockets at your own expense. As the old saying goes, invest in haste, repent at leisure.

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5 short inspirational quotes that’ll really make you think

Short-Inspirational-QuotesToday I offer you 5 short inspirational quotes which I’m confident will get you thinking about your life and what you want out of it.

Short inspirational quotes:

Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant. ~Robert Louis Stevenson

On days when I don’t work, I am working on maintaining my image, just like an athlete. ~Linda Evangelista

I would perceive three years at university as a waste of time. I would have made £200,000 by then. ~Lord Sugar

You have to rule the money. Don’t let the money rule you. ~Fil Adams-Mercer

Marriage is an investment that pays dividends if you pay interest. ~Bob Monkhouse

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Did you find these short inspirational quotes interesting, dear reader? Did they really make you think?

If they did then perhaps this blog post might interest others you know too?

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Like every blogger, I can only keep doing what I do if there are readers viewing my blog posts. So you really can help me, dear reader.

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