What Kind of Green Are You? Time to Pinch Yourself

What Kind of Green Are You? Time to Pinch YourselfSo when you think about the word “green” what do you immediately think of?

Ideally we want to all be the “growing” green, but to be in growth mode you need to leverage and consider each meaning of green.

Let’s explore how others use the word green, what it can mean and symbolize in your life and business.

5 References to Green

  1. Money“I need some green” or greenbacks
  2. Go – could mean go somewhere, move forward or get out of my way
  3. Growing – like trees grow when they are green, they are experiencing growth
  4. Greed – love of money, possessions, will sacrifice self or others to satisfy the need
  5. Sick“I am feeling green” meaning under the weather, not quite like themselves

Did that make you think about green in a new way? Now think about your business, the clients you serve or the company you work for and how green is important to each of those.

Ideally we want to all be the “growing” green, but to be in growth mode you need to leverage and consider each meaning of green.

Why We Need Green For Success

The fact is that we all need to make money (greenbacks). This is what we use to pay for our cool gadgets, homes, cars, food, and more.

For a business making green is how they grow, hire new employees, develop new products and market their business to new customers.

Often times for businesses to succeed we have to go. Where do we go? To industry events, networking groups, conferences and other places where we can meet new prospective clients and expand our knowledge. For a business to grow you need to make green and going is how you get there.

Moving forward is another type of “go”. This is the direction we as individuals and businesses want to always be going. Have you ever heard someone say, “I want to move backwards?” In order to move forward, you need money to learn and market, and you / your businesses will experience moments of “feeling green”. Without moments of feeling green you will not learn how to be better and do things differently.

Another meaning of “go” – get out of the way could be another business or individual telling you to get out of their way, so they can move forward.

I want to explore you getting out of your own way. Often times, as individuals self-doubt holds us back from moving forward. We are afraid to ask for what we want, like more money or a new job, taking that risk or just saying yes to something new or different.

By now, I am sure you have noticed a theme, that each use of green is tied to the other one.

The only green reference I haven’t mentioned yet is greed. You are probably thinking I haven’t mentioned it because greed is such a bad word. The meaning has such a negative conation.

There are two uses of greed that I am going to explore.

Let’s first talk about the love of money or possessions. This is when a person or entity values money and property more than anything else. They will forego health, safety and morals to make green to satisfy their greed. They don’t think of feelings or repercussions, only green.

There is a type of greed you need to leverage to move forward successfully in life or business. You need to be greedy with your time, knowledge and body.

I am going to use myself as an example. I love people and want to help all of them (btw…I love money too). My first instinct is to say yes to every request asked of me, but the fact is that I have to be greedy with my time so I have time to do things I need to move forward successfully.

If I say yes to every request I would spend all my days and nights doing favors for others. I wouldn’t have time to make any green, which helps me to move forward, go out and grow. I am a people person and without these things it would make me feel green.

If I am not greedy about my time, I wouldn’t have the time I need to take care of my physical and mental health, which includes sleeping, taking a digital break, having fun, going out to dinner with friends or writing a blog post like this that helps me as much as you, the reader.

I want to close with this question…

So I ask you today, on St. Patrick’s Day – the “green day”Is it time to pinch yourself back into reality?

Don’t feel green – do something different today, so you can go make some green instead!

Fun fact about me: Green is my favorite color. This must be why.

4 Things You Should Do for Your Business During Dallas Startup Week & Every Week

Dallas Startup WeekBefore we talk about the 4 things you should do for your business during Dallas Startup week and every week, let’s talk about what Dallas Startup Week actually is about and why it was created.

Dallas Startup Week is a celebration of you – the entrepreneur aka business owner! It was started by entrepreneurs, organized and put together by entrepreneurs.

So WHY is Dallas Startup Week celebrating YOU this week?

You are still at it in spite of…

  • The days of doubts and second guessing your decisions
  • The periods of feast or famine when it comes to clients and income
  • Everyone in your family thinking you are a workaholic nut

You realize…

  • As an entrepreneurial minded business owner you need to always be working to develop the best next thing while continuing to focus on serving your current customers
  • 5 out of 10 businesses fail within the first 5 years and you are determined your business isn’t going to be one of those
  • To succeed as an entrepreneur you need moxie (and you have it)

So WHAT do you need to do during Dallas Startup Week and every week to ensure success for YOU and Your Business?

  1. Focus on your customers and their needs
  2. Always be learning (attend Dallas Startup Week for lots of free opportunities)
  3. Be open to new and better ways of doing things
  4. Invest in your business (yes, this means you do need a quality website and online presence – don’t take shortcuts on this)

According to this infographic businesses that start small, know their market, focus on quality, listen to their customers and keep it simple and focused are the ones that succeed.

As you may realize, even though I work at Advice Interactive Group, I am a business owner. I started my small business in 2009 and it has definitely had its ups and downs. Each time I have a down I learn from it and it makes me not only a better business owner, but also I think a better employee.

For Employees (The Future Business Owners)

Did you notice, the four points above also applies to how to you do your work at someone else’s business? In reality, no matter whether you own your own business today or will tomorrow, the fact is that you MUST be willingly to go the extra mile for success. You’ll need dedication, determination and drive to get you there. Do you have what it takes?

I am going to close with two statements that I think we all of us need to think about and consider, not just as business owners but as people in general:

  1. Don’t think you know EVERYTHING (this is a biggie – people that think they know everything and can’t learn from others will never have success as an individual or as a business owner)
  2. Don’t start doing something because you think it will be an easy way for you to make money (this damages your brand, makes you look desperate, and people don’t know what to think about you or who to refer you to – I have seen many smart people fail in business because of this one mistake)

So, I have told you the WHY and the WHAT and now I am going to ask you the HOW? 

How are you going to get started TODAY setting your business up for success tomorrow? Let’s discuss and help each other to grow.

Are you Jack-of-all-trades, master of none? Know your expertise!

Know Your Expertise and Stick to It. Don’t Be the “I do that too” guy!  ~ Lissa Duty

Don’t be a Jack-Of-All Trades: Know Your Expertise
In today’s economy it is very easy to be tempted to take on projects that are not your expertise to pay the bills. (And, yes, I have been there. Being a small business owner is not always easy.)

When you work, speak or write out of your realm of expertise no matter what the reason, it has an affect on you, your brand, your clients and even others.

Risks to Your Brand

  1. Brand messaging gets cloudy. What do you do again? 
  2. Strategic partners are no longer strategic partners. You are now their competitor
  3. Loss of respect from industry peers when you misspeak on your supposed expertise

 Risks to the Client

  1. Foundation not laid out for success
  2. Essential paperwork, processes and setup skipped or not done effectively
  3. Lost opportunities and business for client

Risks to Others

  1. They implement something you misspoke about
  2. They do something against the terms of service and have accounts suspended or worse
  3. They tell others and now a viral misbelief is spreading (& your name is attached to it)

 Do you want to be seen and known as a Jack of all trades, master of none?

According to Wikipedia a “Jack of all trades, master of none” is a figure of speech used in reference to a person that is competent with many skills, but is not necessarily outstanding in any particular one.

I don’t know about you, but I certainly don’t want to be identified with that statement.

Let’s face it, we all have some level of experience in many tasks and roles we can share about, however you cannot be an expert at everything.

Share what you know, but be transparent about your level of experience and if you are just quoting something learned from someone else be honest about it and say so. You will garner more respect with honesty and your star will shine even greater on your true area of expertise.

I will use myself as an example:

  • I know quite a bit about SEO and talk about the importance of integrating it within your website on a regular basis with others. But I would not provide SEO consulting, nor would I speak on the topic as an expert to a group.
  • I have multiple WordPress websites and have built several websites for myself, however I would not let anyone hirer me to build them a website.

Knowing what I do well and positioning myself as an authority in my niche has given me much greater success and made me far more money than a side project taken to make a quick buck.

My point is do what YOU do best and leave the rest. You’ll shine in your field, have respect from your peers, some grateful strategic partners and you will get the business and referrals you want.

Have you taken on a project you wish you hadn’t before? What did you learn about the experience and if you could do it over, what would you change?

15 Ways to Support Others, Help Yourself and Your Brand Online and Offline

15 Ways to Support Others, Help Yourself and Your Brand Online and OfflineThere is no better satisfaction than supporting a cause. One of the side effects of supporting others is how it helps you and your brand online and offline.

The Best Reasons to Help Others

  1. Helps someone in need
  2. Makes you feel good
  3. Creates goodwill for your brand

The simple fact is when you help others it triggers endorphins in your body that makes you feel good. It builds positive feelings about you and your brand in the community.

Lately, I have had several opportunities to support causes and charities, which has got me thinking about the affect it has had on my brand to be connected with the good will I have been creating.

Supporting others doesn’t always mean you have to make a financial contribution.

Free Ways to Support Others

  1. Mentor those entering your industry
  2. Host free events to share your expertise with others
  3. Social sharing and emailing your list about the cause
  4. Making synergetic introductions

You get to determine how you help someone. Giving of yourself is important, but make sure you don’t overcommit your time. You need you time to keep your sanity.

 How to Determine Who / What to Support

  1. You connect with the cause or person
  2. You feel good about the organization or cause
  3. You see a real need and opportunity to help others

Don’t ever support someone out of obligation or because you think it will make me look good. Give voice to your brandDo it because of whom it is helping and how it makes you feel.

How It Helps Your Brand

  1. Inclusion in “Thank You” recognitions, usually online.
  2. Exposure to others supporting the cause or organization
  3. Be included in sponsor logo placement in marketing materials and on the web
  4. Build brand awareness among those benefiting from your support
  5. You can share about it online, press releases and your website

 Organizations I am Supporting

  • Career Design Foundation – career education for middle school and high school students
  • TryMunity – online website created to encourage and support traumatic brain injury survivors and their family members
  • Single Mom Movement – program to help newly single moms with encouragement, training, and resources to set them up for success
  • Mingle Jingle – annual event in DFW in which the proceeds benefit DREAM Fund

That list seems long right? It is easy to take a few minutes to click a contribute button and share on social media, write an email or make an introduction. And, when you can attend an event in person that is even better for you, the organization and your brand.

So what do I challenge you to do now? Find something to support and get after it. (BTW … I invite to select something from my list, if you connect with the cause.)

Comment below and tell me what you support, who and why!

10 Awesome Ways to ROCK Mashable’s Social Media Day 2014

Best Ways to Celebrate Social Media Day

Addison Social Media Day Proclamation 2014, Dallas Social Media ConferenceSo are you wondering “What is Social Media Day and why does Lissa keep talking about it”? Social Media Day is an annual celebration of social media and the impact it has made on how we do business. Through the power of social media EVERYONE from all walks of life can connect, do business and compete with the top brands.

In 2010, technology giant Mashable successfully received the first Social Media Day Proclamation from Victoria, B.C., Canada. Cities around the globe quickly followed suit.

BTW … Addison, Texas made a Social Media Day Proclamation this year to honor Social Media Day and the DFW Rocks Social Media Conference. [Read the story]

Businesses and individuals from around the world and I mean literally the world gather together at meetups, tweetups, conferences, events, and happy hours to celebrate June 30 – Social Media Day. No matter what day of the week June 30 falls on; this is the official day everyone around the world will be celebrating the power of social media. Enough about the history of Social Media Day, as promised . . .

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