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Friday, April 27, 2012

Easy and Simple are NOT Synonymous

The road to success is simple…it’s the journey that can be uncomfortable.

This morning I had my weekly administrative meeting with my supervisor, Business Coach Jim Munro.  These meetings are not only where I get my feet held to the fire it’s where my mini-epiphanies blossom into new ideas, self-discoveries, and you guessed it….blog topics. 

Because a productive, happy, confident, creative Joy makes for an innovative, reliable, proactive Team Support Specialist Joy, Coach Jim graciously gives me the opportunity to utilize his coaching expertise in numerous areas in my life; a good portion of which probably could use more “couch” time than “coach” time.  A common theme in our discussions is choice.  Success is a choice.  Doing something that works is a choice.  Not doing anything, also is a choice. 
So, how do you CHOOSE success? 

Here you go. Are you ready? 

You don’t quit doing the stuff that works. 

There you go. That’s it. 

Don’t believe me? 

Let me tell you about the conversation Coach Jim recently had with an owner of a local maintenance business.  

Coach Jim, excitedly asked this gentleman about his maintenance business, eager and optimistic to hear about their business culture. 

“Well, we’re surviving.” The man answered, sounding slightly defeated and unsure.
Coach Jim paused for a moment, and then asked the owner, “Tell me about your three biggest accounts who have signed up with your company over the last 30 days.” 

After the gentleman answered, Coach Jim then asked him how he acquired those clients.  The owner explained that his company approached these businesses because it was apparent their maintenance needs were not met. 

I’ll stop here for a second. Do you know what Coach Jim said to the man next? Ready….are you sure?

“Keep doing that! Don’t quit doing the stuff that works.” Coach Jim exclaimed. “The solution is to keep doing the stuff that works. What would it mean to your business, if EVERY SINGLE DAY, on your lunch break you approached JUST ONE businesses whose curb appeal was lackluster and hurting their business? What would it mean to those businesses if they had the premier property on the block?” 

The owner stood there silently as Coach Jim momentously continued to provide the man with both strategy and solution. “What if you held yourself accountable, and after doing this every single day for a week, you decided to also approach a prospective business in the afternoon.  What if you and your team member BOTH approached two businesses a day?

“Do you think you’d still be surviving or thriving?” 

The owner, stunned into silence, simply replied “I guess we’d be thriving.”

Coach Jim wrapped up the conversation with the gentleman, “the ones who fail are the ones who don’t go out and do what works because it’s raining, or they are tired because they just had six clients that day and decide to just go get a beer instead.  The ones who succeed don’t quit doing the stuff that works…even when it’s inconvenient or uncomfortable. Successful people do things consistently and persistently.”

And there you have it folks; the key to unlocking success in all facets of your life.  Unfortunately success is not easy.  Simple, yes, easy no. 

Simply, it takes working hard when you’d rather take a nap. It takes clawing your way back up the cliff when life throws you a round-house to the gut. It’s about sucking it up and doing it anyway.   

It’s that simple.

Thursday, April 26, 2012


Welcome to the first posting of “Conversations With a Coach".  The inspiration for this blog stems from my daily interactions with a team of professional business coaches whom I started working with in September 2011. 

Daily, I find myself both inspired and intrigued by the wisdom, encouragement, and general brilliance of the ActionCOACH Spokane team. 

Who are these people? 

I’ll get to that later. First, I want to share with you some examples of the valuable learnings I have garnered throughout the past six months. Mind you, I am not a business owner.  I am currently a “business dreamer”; I have a vision.  This vision includes lots of art and champaign all in a brick and mortar boutique.  My mission statement, albeit still floating around like a dust particle I can’t quite catch yet, includes something to effect “paint lots of pictures and get paid for it.” 

When I interviewed for this position as Team Support Specialist, I was one of 14 candidates.  I had also survived four-whole months as a full-time artist. It turned out, painting pictures was the easy part.  Being a business woman and owner was completely different.  

Was it divine intervention or sweet serendipity that I would just happen to find a job at, are you ready for this, a business coaching firm?

I have to say a bit of both

I have witnessed first-hand, a client who approached our firm with pink slip in hand, an impossible quota, and little hope for success with his current employer.  Fast forward five months…not only has he hit end of year quota at 300% of current year targets (1st qtr.), he recently received a call from his employer’s competitor….trying to recruit him! 

Now, that is what business coaching is about. It’s about above and below the line behavior. It’s about accountability, responsibility, and sometimes, a good ole’ plain ass kicking. Trust me, I’ve had plenty since accepting this position. 

What have I learned?

Yes, business coaching is about eliminating the “head trash” and the “I knows”.  Beyond that, ActionCOACH Spokane offers affordable (how about free…that’s affordable right?) workshops full of amazing, implementable strategies and business techniques.  I consider it a major perk that I get paid to attend all the training sessions.  Although I am not a “business owner” yet, I’ve come to realize life is like a business in many aspects; therefore, I just replace the word “business” with “life” sometimes in my workshop notes.  I am confident that in the future, I’ll be able to scratch out that word “life” and replace it with “business” while sipping fine wine in my glorious art gallery and boutique. 

What is the purpose of this blog? 

It’s unfortunate that ActionCOACH Spokane and it’s amazing team, may in fact be, Spokane’s best-kept secret. The purpose of this blog is to share with you valuable highlights from our workshops, suggested readings, valuable insights…and yes, the occasional epiphany too….so that both business owners and business visionaries have a resource to which they can turn for support and answers
So I welcome you along on my journey, and perhaps in a few years we’ll be sipping champaign together and remembering when our thriving businesses were nothing more than glimmers in our eyes. 


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