Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Why Strategy Matters in Your Business or Your Job Hunt

Answer These Questions, and Decide as you Move Forward
by Patty DeDominic, Coach to High Achievers in Finance, Business and Philanthropy.

 I just finished up a Master Mind call with the Maui team lead by David Finkel.  His firm is one of my favorite clients as  I love to watch David teach and am honored to be a colleague.    My role with the Maui team is to Coach entrepreneurs with growing companies.    We work on personal use of time, strategic priorities, human resource issues and other important business strategies and opportunities which inevitably arise in growing enterprises.   

It's really fun to work with business owners who seek to build scale-able companies.  Because I admire people who are willing to risk their money and their pride to become more successful, serve clients with passion and  build job creating enterprises it rarely seems like work.      As a coach to business owners and senior people, it's as if we are the Coach's Coach!

Today David did a deep dive on some key strategies in the building blocks of business.  Systems for success as I love to call them.       
  Overview of the 5 Strategic Marketing Decisions

1.      Choice of target market.
2.      Choice of product or service to focus on selling.
3.      Choice of business model.
4.      Choice of pricing.
5.      Choice of positioning and branding.

Job Hunter or CEO.... look at the similarities
Each of these decisions has an impact on your time, energy and how you will need to position yourself and your company.     Think about it, the above decisions are useful for job hunter too.      

It you haven't thought of yourself as an enterprise, consider doing so.    Consider who is your ideal target market (insert employer or industry?     If you are a job candidate, it is local or national business?  Large or small employer?    In a growing industry, filled with lots of demand for your continued growth or is it in a declining industry which will call on your resourcefulness and implementing tried and true strategies of the past?  

Choice of Pricing is important too for job hunters, are you the low price model or the guy with deep expertise and premium price?    Your communications and methods of connecting with potential employers will depend on your answers to the above.  

Branding is also important for job hunters and when you are clearer on items 1-4 above you will be able to get a better picture of the brand called YOU, Inc. 

Would you like to get a complimentary copy of our latest 176-page bestseller,       
Build a Business, Not a Job

to get your free copy today!

Good luck as you are preparing your business or your career for growth.   As always, you are free to take advantage of our expertise for a free 25 minute consultation at any time.   Feel free to click the link above for your free (no obligation) copy of the book or call me 805 453-7490  

Patty DeDominic      

Monday, November 19, 2012

Mimi Donaldson Offers Holiday Stress Busting Tips

Hello Friends,

Here it comes again--the season of giving AND receiving. You know how you'll be "receiving" some family and friend obligations you never receive except during the two months ahead? Once you CHOOSE to receive, you now get to choose your attitude and behavior. In my book, Bless Your Stress: It Means You're Still Alive! I define "bless": to redirect the force of your energy so that you affirm your existence and embrace the whole of your life. This establishes the foundations of your own happiness. Yeah...but NOW, in THIS economy? And with THAT family coming over? Well here are 4 tips to improve your ability to focus on what matters:

1. Check your mental baggage.
We all have memories from past holidays. A lot of us haul around a hefty load of stress connected to the holidays of the past. According to Mental Health America, "memories" account for close to 50% of all the sources of holiday stress. The problem is we don't realize it. Remember after that one run-in with your mother-in-law, you vowed to never cook a green bean casserole dish again for the family dinner, yet here you are en route...with yet another covered dish and a sour mood. And some of our New Year's Eve memories aren't as magical and joyous as the '40s movies portray. Imagine having a mandatory Stress Security Check Points Mental Detector (I don't mean "metal"). Imagine being scanned with an Attitude Wand (like the ones they use in airports), only these wands would check for what's weighing down your mind. Then, you can't take it with you!

2. Tap into your Personal Control Panel.
Your "Personal Control Panel" controls what happens in your mind. Remember to push "Play" but skip the "Fast Forward" because, as Gandhi famously said, "There is more to life than increasing its speed." Also, "Fast Forward" can lead to self-fulfilling prophecy scenarios in your head, "Oh I know what's going to happen: I'll buy too much food; I'll buy too little food; the store will run out of food." Make full use of the "Pause Button," meaning to take a deep breath and take stock before letting a stress trigger make you go nuts.

3. Practice the fine art of patience.
Another key element of blessing your stress is to practice "wait lifting," or the ability to wait and have patience in today's 24/7, frenetic "now" culture. Patience is how you handle the wait of the world. By starting with the light waits--the computer doesn't boot up fast enough or the traffic light takes too long to change--you can work up to medium and heavy waits.

4. Make full use of your "Internal Whistle."
This means what it means in football. To stop the action, the whistle blows. We need to take a deep breath and take stock before letting a stress trigger or a whiney nephew make you go nuts and say something you'll regret.

At the end of the day, and holiday, it comes down to cultivating the rare quality of perspective. Bring a "light take" on stress, so at least the stress doesn't last long. During the holidays, besides decking the halls, be sure to play the deck you're dealt and find your trump card. It may be that you are still alive to celebrate. Remember: there are at least 10 ways your holiday table with those people is better than a hospital bed. Trust me, I know. Been there, done that, got the t-shirt. So have a merry month ahead, and get into the New Year's spirit.

*For the full-length version of this article, check out my blog post.

Want more Bless Your Stress? Purchase the book on my website!

Mimi Donaldson
(310) 577-0229

My Blog site!
"Talk is cheap. . .real communication--priceless."

Recruiting Top Talent Ideas from Patty DeDominic

Tips on Recruiting Professionals  from Patty DeDominic
Business Coach to High Achieving Financial, Educational Institutions and entrepreneurial companies and non profits.     

 DeDominic is the former CEO and Founder of and owner of CT Engineering  (professional  recruiting firms)

Finding the Right Talent in 2013 becomes a Critical Business Function.

Corporations with business opportunities will need to refine their recruiting skills, and put
out their welcome mats for top talent.  If you are a hiring manager, review this checklist and give us your comments below.

First Steps to Hiring Great Employees, Attracting Top Talent

·          Write up a good job description, defining critical skills and job requirements.  Identify Must-Haves, and nice- to- haves. Document for your internal communication systems for this job going forward. Called a UBS - universal business system.

·         Identify what the company will and will not do in relocation benefits to employees.   UBS that for the recruiter.
  •      Review your Company website to make sure it is inviting to the best future employees aka  "Trophy Job Candidates" 
  •      Ask yourself, would YOU want to work at the company you see on your website?  Top candidates want to know: Can they afford me?  Will I enjoy the people?   Will this company still be in business in a year or two?   Does the company provide career growth for me and security for my family?  Will I find the work stimulating or boring?
  •  Your Website should give new eyes positive messages and in some ways answer all these questions to your top candidates.   if it is tired, discerning candidates will see that.
  •         Write up your Job Posting  (help wanted ad)  and Cast a wide net. 
  •        Let your current employees know what you need.     Consider offering referral fees for hired employees.   Everybody wins with referral fees paid to existing employees.
  •    Consider placing your ad in the traditional places PLUS  your trade association, alumni offices, career centers at all educational institutions, chamber of commerce
  •        Get creative too:  Your mayor's office, congressman's or governor's office all like to help constituents build and grow jobs.   Ask for their referrals.
  •        Use  Linked In, Craig's list, other sites local to your geography and to your industry.    List five places to place this "ad" then think of a5-10 more places to put this out there.   
  •       Unless this is a confidential opening, this is good PR for your company.  It says we are growing and we are a great place to work.    It will help with general Image Enhancement and building community and industry good will.      
  •         Consider professional recruiting firms, or a by the hour contract recruiter if you have more than 3 important people to bring on board in any quarter.   Your time is worth more than the   $50-90 per hour you will pay a skilled recruiter.
  •      Screen based on your Must-Have lists.  Consider one or two email exchanges to see how candidates present themselves, learn if they follow instructions and act interested (or desperate?)
  •      Use Skype for preliminary one on ones not just out of town candidates. Its free to you and saves time for everyone)
  •         Clearly explain your priorities, organizational culture and mission not just the job to the candidates.
  •          Consider having team mates also interview the candidates or sit in on Skype meetings.
  •      Listen to your gut as well as follow your critical skills UBS list.
  •       After you have an accepted offer, agree on start day, pay, time for review of performance.
  •       Review employees performance several times in the first 30 days to ensure they and you are tracking as expected.  

·         Trust but verify, as you Inspect what you EXPECT from new employees.    They can't read your mind and you want to learn what's on theirs.    

·         Know that the more you hire  the better you will get.    The more people who see what you do for your community and for employees, the more referrals you will get.

·         Nothing is as expensive as "cheap" help.  Hire for the company you visualize in the best future.  Call us for a free no obligation consultation should you wish to discuss your situation.  
Patty De   805 453 7490 

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Eve Briere on Getting Organized for the Holidays or the New Career, Principles to Live By

Motivation and Perspective on Organization 

Eve Briere, CPO® 

everything's organized 

I am constantly asked how one can get motivated to get organized. I can only answer it in the way I look at life. I hope this helps and I certainly don’t intend to alter what works for you.

Being organized, as far as I am concerned is about being able to enjoy life, without spending hours managing your stuff. In order to do that, you have to keep things simple, have systems and perspective. In a world where so many live with so much less than what we have, I look to perspective to keep my life centered. It’s what works for me.


Eve Briere, CPO® 
805 448 2397
everything's organized 

Patty DeDominic's Comments on Eve Briere.         Eve is handling logistics and co producer of the International Women's Festivals again in 2013.  We are really fortunate to benefit from her energy and skills.        

I recently posted this for Eve on her Linked In recommendations section:   "I love watching Eve in action. Her wheels are always turning and she often thinks of space solutions before people even realize they have a problem. She has worked with me in the International Women's Festivals and with clients in California and New York. Shes super fast and easy to work with. 

Everyone loves and respects her energy and her style. She knows how to create spaces for efficient work flow. Her results ensure enjoyment of all types of spaces in homes, events and businesses.

Patty DeDominic, Strategic Business Consultant and Coach to High Achievers" 
Service Category: Business Consultant
Year first hired: 2011 (hired more than once)
Top Qualities: Great Results, Expert, High Integrity

Monday, November 12, 2012

Better Jobs for Women in Finance by Patty DeDominic

Forbes Magazine just ran an excellent article featuring research and info on investment banking careers entitled:

How To Reduce Workplace Gender Segregation And Help Women Obtain Higher Paying Jobs

Employers and women can reduce gender segregation. Photo: Microsoft Free Clip Art
Researchers have previously demonstrated that approximately half of the pay gap between men and women (women earn about 20% less) is due to women having a tendency to work in different occupations and industries than men, a phenomenon called “gender segregation.” But what causes this gender segregation?
Wharton management professor Matthew Bidwell and Roxana Barbulescu, a management professor at McGill University in Montreal, decided to find out and what they uncovered is that negative employer behavior isn’t the only cause of gender segregation. “How women view the employment landscape even before starting the job application process” can lead them to choose different jobs than their male counterparts, thus further promoting gender segregation.
In their paper titled, “Do Women Choose Different Jobs From Men? Mechanisms of Application Segregation in the Market for Managerial Workers,” Bidwell and Barbulescu analyzed data on 1,255 men and women entering the job market after graduating from a large, elite, one-year international MBA program. While this group might not be typical of the population at large, the authors noted that, “studying MBA students is particularly valuable for exploring segregation into some of the best-paid and most influential jobs in society, which are the kinds of jobs in which women have traditionally been under-represented.”
The researchers surveyed the MBA students as to their job interests at the beginning of the program and then at the end so they could discover the kinds of jobs for which they applied, from where the students received offers, and the jobs they ultimately accepted. What they found was that “women were significantly less likely to apply to Wall Street-type finance jobs, somewhat less likely to apply to consulting jobs, and more likely to apply to jobs in general management, most notably internal finance and marketing.”
Further research revealed three factors influenced job search decisions:
  • Applicants’ preferences for specific rewards from their jobs, such as pay or schedule flexibility
  • The ability of applicants to identify with particular kinds of jobs
  • The applicants’ expectations that they would obtain the job if they applied for it
For example, Bidwell and Barbulescu found females were significantly less likely than men to apply for positions where work/life satisfaction ranked low and women tended to apply for positions in industries that employed higher percentages of women. At the beginning of the MBA program, women were just as confident as their male counterparts that they would receive a job offer in whatever fields they applied – except in investment banking.
However, when women did apply, they were just as likely to get the investment banking job as the men. This is because women’s expectation of obtaining a job in the traditionally male dominated investment banking world, with its macho image, impacted whether or not they applied because of their lowered expectation of actually getting a position. Stated Bidwell, “Women just didn’t think they would get jobs there, so they didn’t apply.”
What Bidwell and Barbulescu’s research also demonstrates is the difficulty in bringing about changes in a society still fraught with gender role perceptions. “If you tell employers to stop discriminating [against women], it doesn’t mean you will end up with greater access for women to better, higher-paying jobs. Instead, it’s about changing perceptions of culture,” Bidwell advised.
Actions Bidwell and Barbulescu recommend as ways employers can decrease the gender segregation phenomenon:
  • Implement practices that reduce conflicts between work and family demands (examples from Lisa: promote flexible work schedules, provide access to daycare, promote a Results-Only Work Environment, etc.).
  • Change the way jobs are structured/described and roles/behaviors enacted to make them gender neutral. Jobs should de-emphasize masculine and feminine stereotypical attributes. Application and hiring information should be gender neutral.
  • Make it easier for women to work in male-dominated companies/industries by adapting working styles to allow women (and men) to accommodate family demands.
Bottom line: To decrease workplace gender segregation and thus help women obtain higher paying jobs will take proactive attention and actions from employers, as Bidwell and Barbulescu pointed out. However, it also requires women to educate themselves and other women on how their perceptions of jobs and lowered expectations of getting hired in certain positions (such as in male-dominated industries or traditionally male-dominated jobs) could actually be sabotaging careers and keeping them from the higher paying jobs they desire.
Women need to train themselves and other women to remove the imaginary perception barriers and see themselves as capable of succeeding in any job. To accomplish this, women should define their career goals, determine the knowledge, education, and experience necessary, and then go after their career dreams – no matter what the industry or job.
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Photo credit: Microsoft Free Clip Art