7 Things Badass Professional Women Don't Do

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Over the past few weeks, I’ve had the privilege to speak with dozens of professional women (and a handful of enlightened men) about the unique challenges and experiences women face in the workplace. 

Much of what I heard echoed my own experiences working in Corporate America for 15 years, running my business for the last 2 years, and mentoring countless women and entrepreneurs.

Most notably, there are a number of commonalities among successful women – the things they do to get ahead as well as what they intentionally DON'T do.

The latter category includes the toxic behaviors, people and thoughts that can sabotage our momentum and ultimate success.

How can you adopt the practices, habits and mindsets to unleash your inner boss and take command of your career?

You can start by understanding the 7 key behaviors that badass professional women don’t do:

  1. Don’t Put Your Head Down and Work Harder
  2. Don’t Compare Yourself
  3. Don’t Say Yes
  4. Don’t Accept the Hand You’re Dealt
  5. Don’t Feel Guilty
  6. Don’t Be a Tough Guy
  7. Don’t Pull All-Nighters

1: Don’t Put Your Head Down and Work Harder

At some point, we’ve all been taught that if we work hard and do a good job, we’ll be rewarded. 

This belief is instilled in us from a young age.

Maybe your parents rewarded you for getting good grades or your high SAT score helped get you into the school of your choice.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way in the professional world. 

You very rarely get noticed for hard work alone. 

Yes, there’s a place for hard work, drive and commitment to excellence, but it’s your relationships and ability to promote yourself that are far more critical to your success in moving up the corporate ladder and achieving recognition.

Too often, women fall into this trap:  We put in long hours at our desk trying to create the most perfect work product, but we miss out on the opportunity to really differentiate ourselves and stand out – by getting out there and showing people who we really are. 

People need to know you, not just your work. 

We all have qualities that fascinate other people.  It’s your responsibility to promote yourself and show people what’s so great about you.

The workplace is not the place to be humble or let others take credit for your accomplishments. 

This doesn’t mean that you need to dominate meetings or brag about your accomplishments. 

Rather, there are a number of strategic ways you can build your profile. 

  • Focus on the key relationships that are critical to your growth and success.  Think about it like building a board – who are the people you can learn from and can facilitate your growth and success?
  • Find sponsors and mentors who will help you gain greater visibility and open doors for you.
  • Have lunch with your colleagues. Go to happy hour with them. Even if you don’t want to. :)

Over time you will find that building genuine relationships with the right peers and influencers will make your job easier. 

You won’t have to work so hard because people already know what you bring to the table and they trust you.

2:  Don't Compare Yourself

Comparison is the thief of joy. 

Yet we all do it at some point.  

But unless you’re extremely motivated by seeing someone more successful than you, comparing yourself to others is not likely to serve you at work. 

This is because we each have a unique set of personality traits and competencies that fascinate others. 

For me, my ambition, focus and confidence have often set me apart from my peers. 

If I compared myself to someone with a different mix of advantages, I would be frustrated and probably couldn’t replicate their results.

So what can you do instead?

  • Observe others you admire (i.e., watch, don’t judge) and think about what makes them successful.
  • Consider your own strengths and weaknesses and how comfortable you are pushing those boundaries. 

This last part is key – while it’s great to push yourself out of your comfort zone, it needs to be authentic and realistic.

Take this example:

If you’re trying to emulate the best public speaker in your firm, but you have never given a public talk or you get extreme stage fright…

Then it may not be realistic to think you are going to be an amazing public speaker without some significant time, practice and effort. 

It may look like that skill comes naturally to someone else, but it probably took them years to master. 

But all you see is the polished result. 

This is why comparison can be so dangerous. 

Not only do we lack insight into what it took that person to get there, but we may not even possess the innate natural talents that would facilitate our success in that area.

So we could just be setting ourselves up for disappointment.

Before you compare yourself to someone else, assess your own natural talents and non-talents. 

Consider whether they are well-aligned to your pursuits and if you’re committed to putting in the hard work and time to get there.

3:  Don't Say Yes

By nature, many women are people pleasers. 

We want to make others happy and we want people to like us. 

We want to to say yes to our boss’s last minute request to get that report in by Friday.

We want to volunteer for that extra assignment because we will do a great job and it’s a way to get noticed. 

And we also want to mentor the three people who have reached out to us because they admire us and want to learn from us.

Suddenly, we’ve agreed to a ton of extra tasks and we’re overcommitted.

There’s absolutely a time and place in your career for saying yes as much as possible. 

Only you know when that time is right…

For me, I did this early on in my career, when I was younger (and had boundless energy and fewer personal commitments) and hungry for as many new experiences as possible to help me develop my niche and natural talents.

Beyond that, saying no becomes a critical way to set boundaries and protect your creativity and your sanity. 

If you’re any good at what you do, you will undoubtedly have people asking a lot of you. 

You aren’t obligated to say yes to everything. 

You also don’t need to apologize.

Setting boundaries is part of being mature and also allows you to take time for self-care. 

4:  Don't Accept The Hand You're Dealt

Most things in life are negotiable. 

Even if you think they aren’t. 

There’s no reason you have to accept something just because that’s the way it’s always been or if you’re unhappy.  

You always have a choice.

It may not be easy, but the least effective thing you can do is just accept a mediocre situation.

Powerful women play the long game. 

They think about their end goal and the small steps they need to take to get there. 

  • They understand the connections and relationships they need to build over time. 
  • They take up space both mentally and physically – they can’t be ignored.
  • They don’t sit around feeling sorry for themselves or make excuses about why they are stuck in their current situation. 
  • They don’t let self-doubt cripple their ability to move forward.

They resist stagnation.

5:  Don't Feel Guilty

We feel bad missing work if we’re sick.

We feel bad leaving early to pick up our kids.

We feel bad asking for too much time off.

We feel bad if we’re too exhausted to stay up all night working on a proposal.  

And we need to stop!

Women are often guilt-ridden, but the most successful professional women don’t let feelings of anguish or remorse hold them back. 

Personally, guilt has been the hardest feeling for me to overcome. 

I never want to let anyone down. 

But sometimes we have to in order to choose ourselves. 

The key is to own our choices and stand behind them. 

Be transparent and upfront about your boundaries. 

No one is perfect, but being clear about your choices means you don’t have to apologize or feel bad when you say no.

6:  Don't Be a Tough Guy

We know that badass professional women set boundaries, negotiate for what they want and don’t feel guilty, but they also do this with finesse and grace. 

They don’t steamroll over people or act like a tough guy. 

And this can be a difficult balance for many women.

Women have to walk a tightrope of being authentic to themselves and embracing their femininity and being assertive enough to command respect.

The most successful women have figured out this balancing act. 

They speak up, are confident and can be forceful. 

But they have put in time building social capital with their colleagues by fostering genuine relationships.

They are likeable and this increases their influence.

7:  Don't Pull All-Nighters

I see plenty of successful women who never seem to sleep.

I am not one of them. 

Sleep has repeatedly been proven to improve your memory and focus, reduce stress and depression, help maintain your weight and increase your overall quality of life. 

Being well-rested helps us keep the composure we need to deal with all the challenging situations and BS we face at work.

Sleep is a game-changer. 

-

In Conclusion

Eliminating these 7 behaviors from your day-to-day professional life will have a big impact.

And the benefits from these behaviors often compound over time.

I encourage you to start today and embrace the badass professional woman you are.

Episode 40: The LivWell Health Series: Digitizing Tedious Paper-Based Workflows and Referrals in a Large Health Care System with Sharie Torres

Episode 40: The LivWell Health Series: Digitizing Tedious Paper-Based Workflows and Referrals in a Large Health Care System with Sharie Torres

Today’s featured guest is Sharie Torres. Sharie is a registered nurse from Hawaii and has worked in a large healthcare system there for 20 years. She acts as a Utilization Manager and has witnessed firsthand how technology has helped one of the largest providers of the nation, improve their workflow and referral management processes. A lot of healthcare systems today are struggling with the transition to technological solutions. Moving from hundreds of paper processes to something quicker can be a huge and often tedious undertaking for a medical team. 

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Episode 39: The LivWell Health Series: The Role of Technology and Transformation In Senior Living With Denise Rabidoux of EHM Senior Solutions

Episode 39: The LivWell Health Series: The Role of Technology and Transformation In Senior Living With Denise Rabidoux of EHM Senior Solutions

Today’s featured guest is Denise Rabidoux, President, and CEO of EHM Senior Solutions. EHM Senior Solutions is a not-for-profit organization with a history dating back to 1879. Formerly known as Evangelical Homes of Michigan, EHM operates senior living, Medi-Care at home and private duty life choices programs.

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Episode 38: The LivWell Health Series: One Caregiver’s Journey to Impact 1 Million Lives with Alex Go

Episode 38: The LivWell Health Series: One Caregiver’s Journey to Impact 1 Million Lives with Alex Go

We are in for a treat with today’s featured guest, Alex Go. Alex is the CEO and Co-founder of LivWell Health, a technology-enabled service provider that assists seniors to live independently at home and also for families seeking assistance in their care. Their goal is to make caregiving easier for the 44 million Americans that are caring for older adults and special needs children. LivWell Health partners with senior service providers to expand the markets they serve with the goals of enhancing revenue and improving staff productivity.

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The LivWell Health Series: Modernizing the Delivery of Home and Community-Based Services to Improve the Social Determinants of Health

About LivWell Health

With an aging population that prefers to live independently in the setting of their choice (often their home), the demand for home and community-based service delivery is growing.

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LivWell Health is designed to meet this need for patients and their families, care coordinators, social workers and senior living providers.

  • Care coordinators and social workers have chosen LivWell Health's workflow-optimized, referral management solutions to easily manage community resources, create a patient-centric "personalized service plan" and streamline patient hand-offs to their preferred network partners. 
  • Senior living providers enjoy LivWell Health's interactive digital signage systems and tablets to register for social activities, submit service requests, review dining options or just keep up with community news.  This offers one information system to power all of the providers' signage, in-campus TV channel and resident portal solutions. 

Podcast Series

This four-part podcast series dives deeper into the role that LivWell Health and technology in general increasingly play in home and community-based services and care transitions.  The following episodes explore LivWell Health founder Alex Go's personal journey as a caregiver and how it inspired him to create LivWell Health, as well as examples of how several communities and care coordinators have incorporated LivWell Health into their programs with great success.

  • Episode 38:  One Caregiver’s Journey to Impact 1 Million Lives with Alex Go
  • Episode 39:  The Role of Technology and Transformation In Senior Living With Denise Rabidoux of EHM Senior Solutions
  • Episode 40:  Digitizing Tedious Paper-Based Workflows and Referrals in a Large Health Care System with Sharie Torres

How To Transform Your Daily Grind into Joy

As summer winds down and the kids go back to school, traffic congestion surges and job demands seem to multiply….

Time becomes an even more precious and scarce commodity.  Suddenly, the slower pace and summer lull many of us enjoyed in July and August comes to a screeching halt.

And reality sets in:  you are stretched thin and stressed. 

How do I know? Because I’ve been there. 

In fact, I used to experience this cycle several times a year before I learned how to consistently take better care of myself and make self-care a priority.

For many years, I accepted this vicious cycle of stress as a normal way of life. 

Most of the time I managed ok – I slept and exercised less than I would’ve liked – but I was still keeping all the balls in the air and doing well at work.

I even put Band-Aids on the problem by scheduling quick 4-day vacations to warm, sunny places to supply me with the relaxation and rest I needed. 

But every time when I returned to real life (which was approximately 689 unread emails, numerous requests from family and friends for my time, and the daily demands of running a household) – any benefits from my break were gone within my first day home.

About four years ago, a light bulb went off for me – if I needed to keep escaping my daily life for these mini-vacations, maybe vacations weren’t the answer.  I needed to change something about my daily life.

I’m probably not much different from you in that I spend most of my daily life at work.

Here are some of the transformational steps I took to examine what wasn’t working in my daily life and my career and how I broke my cycle of stress.

1. Slow Down

I like to think I’m a smart person but it took me far longer than I care to admit (literally years!) to realize that I was unhappy in my job – I was working too many hours and no longer found the work enjoyable. 

I was so worried about letting someone down at work or at home that I was pretty much on autopilot. 

I was moving so fast trying to keep up with everything, that I never took the time to reflect and consider if a change might be good for me.

It wasn’t until I started being honest with myself and my co-workers about how I was feeling, that I allowed myself to take the gas off the pedal and see what that felt like.

Even then, I didn’t have an epiphany over night. It still took over a year for me realize that I actually didn’t want to be a partner in a big consulting firm (despite working towards that goal for over 10 years) and that I didn’t want to continue to work 60+ hour weeks.

2.     Do Something

Once I figured this out, I had another problem.  For 10+ years, my identity and self-worth had been wrapped up in my career and my ability to be all things to all people.

If I walked away from that, who would I be?

Well, heck, I had no idea, but I knew I just needed to try something else.

So I did. 

I took a new job in a different industry doing something completely different than what I had done before.

I also started saying no to personal invitations when I didn’t want to go.

My days of people-pleasing were over.

It was scary and I had my doubts about whether I could succeed and if people would be mad at me.

But, you know what?

It literally forced me to take action and do something to change the path I was on. 

And my family and true friends were completely supportive of me putting myself first.

3.    Be Kind To Yourself

When I made the change to switch jobs, it was a big deal for me.

I had been at my firm for 7 years and was a known commodity.

Now I was going into a new environment, where I didn’t know anyone, and I had no track record and little direct experience with the type of work I was going to be doing.

Frankly, I was scared shitless.

I tend to be hard on myself and have high expectations for what I can achieve. I really didn’t know if I could do this job well.

So I decided to re-frame my definition of success.  

Leaving my previous job wasn’t just about starting a new job and changing the direction of my career.

It was about changing my entire life.

It was about leaving the rat race of Big 5 Consulting and taking more time for me.

So I decided to use this job as an opportunity to do just that. 

I used this role to hit the re-set button my life and looked for ways to create new routines and healthy habits (i.e., taking barre classes after work, seeing my nutritionist weekly).

These became measures of success along with my performance at work. 

I no longer based my success and self-worth solely on what went down in the office.

If I can make these changes, I’m confident anyone can.  I was a workaholic, people-pleasing, creature of habit.

And today, I’m still a creature of habit…but I have better habits. :)

Would you like to know how to assess and develop your own daily habits?

If so, click here for my free 45-minute training to learn how to show up powerfully in the workplace and feel fulfilled, while having more time for yourself and the things you love.

How to Re-Ignite Your Personal Brand and Your Career

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When Your Career Stagnates and Your Opportunities Seem Limited….

It can be demoralizing, anxiety-producing and downright depressing.  Believe me, I know.

In my 20s and even still today as I approach 40, I frequently experience age and gender discrimination. 

I look young and enjoy fashion (a stint at Saks in grad school left me with an affliction for designer handbags and shoes).

And sometimes people equate that with a lack of experience, intelligence and business sense.

If I had a dollar for every time I heard “Oh, you wouldn’t understand this reference because you’re too young,” or “I can’t believe how much you have accomplished in your short career”…

It seems like more often than not, people are surprised by my expertise, professional accomplishments and network. 

However, those who know me are not. 

At work, I’m assertive, knowledgeable and confident.

But I wasn’t always this way. 

Early in my career, I was quiet, shy and afraid to speak up and share my ideas because I was afraid to sound stupid or be wrong. 

You ever felt that way?

There were a number of factors that changed my behavior over time but probably the biggest influence was a boss I had named Jacqui. 

Jacqui was smart, assertive and didn’t fit the mold of a typical corporate woman – she played in a man’s world, but was true to who she was and was also someone I genuinely enjoyed hanging out with. 

It was from working with and receiving feedback from Jacqui that led me to break out of my shell.  

But if you don’t have a “Jacqui” in your life, what can you do to establish your brand and stand out so you can get the promotion, raise and respect you deserve at work?

Well here’s a few things that I’ve done over the years that have helped me…

1.  Unlock Your Natural Talents

  • Take the time to understand what you’re good at.
  • You can do this by taking assessments, self-reflecting and asking others to give you feedback.
  • Equally important, understand your ‘non-talents’. 
  • Then, rather than try to improve on your ‘non-talents’, become more of who you already are by building on your natural talents.
  • We wouldn’t expect a goldfish to climb a tree right? :)

2.  Develop Personal Style

  • Like it or not, we live in a visual, superficial society. 
  • Appearance is important. 
  • You don’t need to be a model or spend a fortune to look polished and stylish but it does require a little effort. 
  • Figure out what styles make you feel the most comfortable and confident and stick with those. 
  • Sticking to certain silhouettes and colors can make getting dressed fast and simple. 
  • Develop an easy-to-maintain hair and makeup routine. 
  • You may need to get advice on these things – ask your stylish friends, your hairdresser and the makeup artist at Sephora for tips.  
  • It’s not silly and superficial…it’s part of how you present yourself and your brand.  

3.  Incorporate Self-Care Into Your Career

  • Successful women take care of themselves. 
  • They exercise, eat healthy and are cognizant of their mental health. 
  • Take the time to figure out how you can incorporate regular exercise and a healthy diet into your life. 
  • Stay away from toxic people who sap your energy.
  • Do things outside of work that make you feel good and rejuvenate you.

4. Own Who You Are 

  • Once you recognize your natural talents and develop your personal style, OWN IT. 
  • Don’t sit quietly in your team meeting waiting to be called on. 
  • Stand tall and confidently share your insights. 
  • If the thought of this is too scary, start by having 1:1 conversations with peers you trust.
  • You can bounce your ideas off them first and build up the confidence to share them in a larger group or with your boss.

5. Ask For What You Want  

  • Everyone is busy and most likely, your boss isn’t spending much time thinking about how to get you everything you want professionally.
  • YOU are in charge of your path, even if you work for someone else. 
  • Take the time to figure out where you want to be in 6 months, 1 year and 5 years and let people know. 
  • Even if they don't think you’re ready, ask them why and how you can get there. 
  • Then take this feedback and think about whether you can act on it or if you are better off looking outside of your current job for the type of opportunity you are looking for.

I realize these steps may not be easy for everyone.

But taken in small chunks over a period of time, they are doable and can help you take your career to the next level, even if you’re feeling stuck, underpaid and unappreciated.

If you want to learn more about how you can make a few simple, but transformational, shifts to get the promotion, raise and respect you deserve in your career, click here for my free 45-minute training.

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Eclipses and Shadows

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This week's solar eclipse got me thinking about shadows. The Moon's shadow crossed the Earth's surface, dimming the sun's light for a period of time.

There are a lot of times in my professional life where people have tried to dim my light and keep me in their shadow. This isn't unique to me - it happens to lots of women.

And it's got to stop. Maybe we can't control our workplace cultures and societal norms. But women can take steps to assert our confidence and leverage our natural talents so that no one dims our light, takes credit for our work, or silences our ideas.

Episode 37: Creating An Organizational Culture to Serve Older Adults In a Consistent, Caring Way With Tristan White

Today’s featured guest is Tristan White. Tristan is the CEO and founder of The Physio Co, which helps Australian seniors stay mobile, safe, and happy. Onsite physiotherapy is their thing. In 2004, The Physio Co was just one person with a vision to change seniors' healthcare forever. Today, The Physio Co is ranked as Australia’s best place to work, has 100 team members and delivers over 200,000 physiotherapy consultations per year. 

Tristan is a qualified physiotherapist from the University of Melbourne. He has an MBA from Queensland University of Technology and a Masters degree from MIT for their Entrepreneurial Masters Program. Tristan also loves helping other people build strong cultures and be happier at work. He writes a blog called Culture is Everything, which Smart Company lists as one of Australia’s 25 Best Business Blogs and he is also a speaker. In today’s episode we hear all about Tristan’s work with The Physio Co as well as the systems he uses to create successful cultures in his organization and in others.

Listen to the Show:

What You’ll Learn From This Episode:

  • Why Tristan left behind a sexy career helping professional athletes to serve older adults
  • The role physiotherapists play in providing social engagement for the seniors they treat 
  • How a combination of in-person and tele-rehab can be powerful for PT patients
  • How to discover and live the core values of your business and create a consistent organizational culture
  • How to show employees love and appreciation
  • The importance of being flexible on what you deliver but consistent in how you deliver

Featured On The Show:

BOOST Bonus: 8 Innovators Targeting the Elder Care Market

The Sponsor For Today’s Episode:

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Episode 36: Building a Lasting Business Culture To Encourage Entrepreneurial Thinking with Ronen Gafni

I am pumped to introduce today’s featured guest, Ronen Gafni. Ronen is a serial entrepreneur who grew up in the startup nation of Israel, trading on the stock market, operating a branding company, training companies, and more. He is the creator and founder of FreshBiz and the FreshBiz game developer as well. Ronen also co-authored the book, The New Entrepreneurz: Changing the Way You Play Life, and he is also a visionary global trainer, or business coach, as many like to call him. 

Ronen has been featured on TV, radio, and magazines talking about the future of business, and he has trained over 15,000 people across 20 countries on innovation and entrepreneurial thinking. As a keynote speaker and futurist, Ronen weaves together new approaches to business, education, design, and lifestyle. Today we dive into applying gaming to business by starting with lifestyle and designing the business model accordingly. We also go further into creating a business model based on partnerships, the role of game-based learning in entrepreneurship, the effect of culture on creative thinking, and much more.

Listen to the Show:

What You’ll Learn From This Episode:

  • Three key features of FreshBiz. 
  • How to create lasting cultural change and creative thinking through re-wiring mindsets.
  • How to design a successful business model, without offices or employees. 
  • The role and impact of game-based learning on entrepreneurial thinking.
  • How to anticipate and prepare for the different seasons of business.
  • Why it's important to start with a clear canvas when reinventing your business.

Featured On The Show:

BOOST Bonus: Cultural Change That Sticks

The Sponsor For Today’s Episode:

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Episode 35: Transforming a MBA and Big 5 Consulting Expertise Into an International Wine Business With Courtney Kingston

I am so excited to introduce today’s featured guest, Courtney Kingston. Courtney is the founder of Kingston Family Vineyards in Casablanca Valley, Chile. She’s a graduate of Princeton University and she started her career as a consultant for Deloitte’s wine industry practice. There she began learning the ins and outs of the California wine business, and later as a student at the Stanford Graduate School of Business, she wrote the vineyard’s original business plan using the Chilean cattle ranch that her family had owned and operated since 1922. 

After many discussions about the feasibility of converting the family farm into a vineyard, Kingston Family Vineyards became a reality in 1998. Courtney and her husband, Andy, have three daughters and share their time between Portola Valley, California and Chile’s Casablanca Valley. Today Courtney shares the story how how it all began, as well as the ins and outs of what it’s really like to start and run your own vineyard.

Listen to the Show:

What You’ll Learn From This Episode:

  • The three things to know about Kingston Family Vineyards. 
  • The turning point that convinced Courtney to leave her full-time job.
  • How Courtney grew her business, starting out with her office in a closet.
  • Why using a direct-to-consumer business model was key for the Kingston Family Vineyards.
  • The inflection point in Courtney’s life, and what she learned from the experience.
  • Self-care tips to give you energy and help you to listen through the noise in life.
  • Why you can't allow fear to prevent you from pursing your dream.

Featured On The Show:

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    Episode 34: How Balance Training Keeps You Healthy and Young with Jim Klopman

    Today’s featured guest is Jim Klopman. Jim is a lifelong innovator who has always been one of those people who thinks differently. He was born with brain damage, ADHD, and dyslexia and used athletics to overcome these challenges. After years of being an athlete and unsure of his purpose in life, Jim found his purpose and developed his own business called The SlackBow Balance Training System. 

    After five years of development, Jim believes that with the right neural whole-body training to optimize the human balance system, everyone can improve physically and mentally, and can even live longer and feel younger. Prior to starting SlackBow, Jim worked as a VP of Marketing at Intera Corporation and at Russell Athletic as a Management Turnaround Specialist and Product Developer. Today Jim is here to share more about balance training and what the SlackBow System is all about.

    Listen to the Show:

    What You’ll Learn From This Episode:

    • The three things everyone should know about balance and the SlackBow System. 
    • The Klopman Balance Index and how it is designed to categorize balance.
    • Why we live in a world that is designed to degrade our balance system.
    • Everyday tips and strategies for improving your balance. 
    • The complexity of the balance system, and how it involves every aspect of your body.
    • Recovering from balance issues and the role it plays on our mental health and quality of life.
    • The importance of perseverance and having an absolute belief in what you do.
    • Why timing is everything when it comes to adopting new innovations in the market.
    • As an innovator, why taking action on your ideas is absolutely crucial.

    Featured On The Show:

    BOOST Bonus: 8 Ways to Improve Your Balance

    The Sponsor For Today’s Episode:

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    • Join the conversation by leaving a comment below!

    Episode 33: Knowing Your Strengths and Buying Into the Idea of Change With Stephanie Goetsch

    Today on the show we welcome Stephanie Goetsch. Stephanie is the founder of Spark Career Strategy, which she launched in 2010. What began as a dedicated career coaching for "what’s next" professionals, blossomed into organizational development and human resources consulting, career and performance coaching, and group training offerings. As the name suggests, Stephanie delivers both spark and strategy to each company and client that she works with. She’s a lover of change, whether it’s changing minds with learning, changing careers with career coaching, changing business with innovation and design, or changing behaviors with performance coaching. 

    Prior to launching her own business, she held a number of human resource positions in different organizations, including US Pharmacopeia and Chevy Chase Bank. She’s also a passionate supporter of the US Military and in 2016 she founded Call to Action, which is a non-profit organization that delivers exceptional career transition strategies to US veterans and military spouses to successfully leverage their unique talents for civilian careers. 

    Listen to the Show:

     

    What You’ll Learn From This Episode:

    • Key trends in career transitions and what types of opportunities the future workforce is looking for.
    • Why it's important to buy into the idea of change, even though it might be painful.
    • How to transform your business away from the “all-consuming” model and towards balance.
    • Why Stephanie founded Call to Action and how it supports the community.
    • How to grow your business by bootstrapping your way to the top.
    • The importance of knowing your limits and surrounding yourself with a great team.
    • The best way to transition from providing free services to having actual, paying clients. 
    • How to adopt the mindset of being comfortable promoting yourself. 
    • Why it's crucial to operate in your own “wheelhouse” and build on those skills. 

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    BOOST Bonus: 10 Tips for Bootstrapping Your Startup

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    Episode 32: Building a Competitive Business in the Healthy Beverage Industry With John S. Lee

    Today’s featured guest is John Lee. John is the co-founder of Capital Kombucha, which is Washington D.C.’s first kombucha brewery. He founded the company with two classmates from GW’s business school in 2012. Prior to business school, John worked as a structural engineer, which was a far cry from the world of healthy beverages. John and his co-founders identified a market in D.C. for the fermented sweetened tea drink that’s believed to support a healthy gut and strong immune system. 

    Unlike the West Coast, which is saturated with these types of health and wellness beverages, D.C. was pretty low on kombucha offerings, yet had a very active, health-conscious population. So Capital Kombucha was born and they began selling their drinks at local markets before expanding to larger retail outlets, like Whole Foods and Safeway. Today they distribute to hundreds of locations from Virginia to New York, all along the mid-Atlantic. 

    Listen to the Show:

    What You’ll Learn From This Episode:

    • The three things everyone should know about kombucha and building a business in the beverage industry.
    • The costs and challenges faced when you have a product that is not shelf-stable.
    • How to be competitive in the beverage industry and have your product stand out.
    • Implementing a just-in-time inventory system when you do not yet have baseline data.
    • Future trends in the beverage industry and how to leverage partnerships. 
    • How to avoid burnout by taking a step back from your business to get a new perspective.

    Featured On The Show:

    BOOST Bonus:  5 Facts That Will Convince You To Actually Care About Your Gut Bacteria

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    Episode 31: Turning Your Expertise Into A High-Ticket Business Coaching Program With Tony Teegarden

    Today's featured guest is Tony Teegarden. Tony is an online marketing and lifestyle coach who works with coaches and experts, including me, to turn their expertise into high-ticket, online group coaching programs so they can leverage their time and enjoy life without being consumed by their business. His clients have generated millions in revenue over just a few short years, in dozens of niches. 

    Tony has more than 20 years of sales experience, and his whole sales philosophy is based on serving your ideal prospect and providing value. He has a 100% happy client and result rate, in part because he only works with people who are open to the type of transformation that his program requires. I have benefited so much in the last few months from working with Tony so I knew I had to share his amazing expertise and my experience with all of you.

    Listen to the Show:

    What You’ll Learn From This Episode:

    • Three things to know about turning your expertise into a high-ticket coaching program.
    • Tony’s philosophy on encouraging others to sell big-ticket items.
    • Why people are more likely to invest highly when they are trying to eliminate pain.
    • The future trends for big-ticket programs in the coaching industry.
    • The level of expertise and hard work required to make a successful transformation.
    • How paying attention and listening well are the best ways to serve your ideal client.
    • Using the technique of a quiet launch to test and validate your product in the market.

    Featured On The Show:

    BOOST Bonus:  Diagnosing Your Prospects' Needs

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    Episode 30: Accelerating the Development of High-Potential Young Leaders With Carrie Rich

    I am so fired up to introduce today’s featured guest, Carrie Rich. Carrie is the CEO and Co-founder of The Global Good Fund, which is built by and for social entrepreneurs. It was created in 2012 when Carrie was just 26 years old, based on the belief that growing leaders is the best strategy for solving complex social problems and achieving global good. The Global Good Fund leverages this vision by accelerating the development of high-potential young leaders through financial investment and by harnessing executive insights via a customized leadership development program. In 2017, over 24,000 high potential entrepreneurs from more than 100 countries applied for one of 12 fellowship positions with the Fund. 

    Carrie wears a number of other hats as well, including published author and mentor-in-residence at GW University. She's also part of the faculty at GW and the Amani Institute in Kenya and a board member at several other organizations. Carrie's also won a number of honors, including the 2016 Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award, the POLITICO Women Who Rule Award, the Washington Business Journal 40 Under 40, Entrepreneur.com Top 30 Startups to Watch, the Asian Social Innovation CEO of the Year, and others. The story of how the Global Good Fund came to be is truly amazing. 

    Listen to the Show:

    What You’ll Learn From This Episode:

    • The three things everyone should know about the Global Good Fund.
    • How the Global Good Fund came to be from $100 of lunch money.
    • How to establish an authentic mentor relationship.
    • The future of social entrepreneurship and the expanding international diversity.
    • Three tactics Carrie and the Global Good Fund team used to grow the business.
    • Accepting failure as a part of growing and learning in business.
    • Creating a supportive culture with a focus on both work and family. 

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    Boost Bonus:  5 Tips for Finding and Keeping a Good Mentor
     

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    Episode 29: How to Take Risks and Get Over the Fear of the Unknown With Michael Sacca

    Today on the show I am pleased to introduced Michael Sacca. Michael was President of Crew, which has sourced freelancers for over $30 million in design and development projects. Crew was just acquired by Dribbble, which is a community of creative designers who share small screenshots that show their work, process, and current projects. Michael led the negotiations for the acquisition of Crew and became the Head of Sales and Marketing at Dribbble. He's also the host of Rocketship.fm, a business podcast that's focused on inspiring entrepreneurs. 

    Michael started his career by moving to LA and pursuing music. After three years of waiting tables and little success, he decided to teach himself to code and he used his coding skills to launch Tiny Factory, which is a web development agency that won clients like GE and Kobe Bryant. While running Tiny Factory, he started the Rocketship Podcast and built many other apps and products, some of which of have been acquired. 

    Listen to the Show: 

    What You’ll Learn From This Episode:

    • The three things to know about the current marketplace for creative designers.
    • How low-cost design services are impacting the design industry for creative freelancers.
    • How Crew serves designers by managing their businesses.
    • The latest trends in the design industry and the movement towards UX and product design.
    • How to grow your business through content, tool marketing, direct sales and SEO.
    • The commitment and tactics required to build an audience through content marketing.
    • Knowing when to walk away from something that you are no longer passionate about.
    • How to structure and develop side projects that support your current business. 
    • Developing the right mindset to accept failure and move on quickly. 

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    BOOST Bonus:  Red Flag Signs That Show It's Time to Walk Away from a Startup

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    Episode 28: Finding Success by Outsourcing Your Business with Daniel Gefen

    Today I am excited to introduce today’s featured guest, Daniel Gefen. Daniel is the host of the Can I Pick Your Brain podcast, as well as the founder of Jet Virtual, a telephone answering service and virtual office business with locations all over the world. He is also the cofounder of Get Featured, which helps small brands go from obscurity to celebrity. Although he’s built a successful career, Daniel has certainly had his ups and downs, which we will get into today.  

    At the age of 23, Daniel had a six-figure salary...right before he went broke and was evicted onto the streets of California with his wife and son. They returned to London where he took a job as a cashier for about a year before he couldn’t take it anymore and just had to get back to being an entrepreneur. Daniel started Jet Virtual and through persistence and a lot of cold calling, he grew the business. 

    All was going well until one of his key team members abruptly quit and his landlord sold the building and he was told he needed to vacate the space. After those two blows, he wasn’t sure that he was going to be able to run the business, but then he got the idea to outsource his business to one of his competitors, and this allowed him to scale faster and eliminate his staff and equipment, thereby freeing him up to work from anywhere. Using this approach, he spent a year working out of a hotel lobby before he semi-retired on passive earnings at age 31. 

    Listen to the Show:

    What You’ll Learn From This Episode:

    • How Jet Virtual works, and how it's possible to find success by outsourcing your business.
    • Why creating a sense of urgency is crucial for reaching your goals.
    • The value of outsourcing the “grunt work” to free up time to build your business.
    • How to structure your business model to still be profitable while outsourcing.
    • Important characteristics to have in a business partnership.
    • Why Daniel’s biggest piece of parting advice is to constantly produce content.

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    BOOST Bonus: 22 Tips For Creating Great Content When You Don’t Have a Clue

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    Episode 27: Harnessing the Power of Creative Disruption With Josh Linkner

    Today’s featured guest is Josh Linkner. Josh has spent his career harnessing the power of creative disruption. His journey has been non-traditional at every step. As the founder and CEO of five tech companies, Josh built his businesses from a blank page into a combined value of over $200 million. As a hyper-growth CEO of over 20 years, he’s used innovative approaches to topple competitors, fight through adversity, and achieve at the highest levels. 

    In addition to his own startups, Josh has been involved with the launch, growth or financing of over 100 other companies. He’e helped raise over $150 million of venture capital and has mentored leaders and entrepreneurs through the struggles of explosive growth. He is the founding partner of Detroit Venture Partners, which invests in tech startups as a platform to help rebuild his beloved hometown of Detroit, Michigan. He’s also the founder and CEO of ePrize where Josh built the largest digital promotion agency in the world, serving 74 of the top 100 brands. 

    Working with many of the most progressive CMO’s in the world, he’s a pioneer in digital marketing, winning dozens of awards for groundbreaking innovation at the intersection of technology and advertising. Josh is also an internationally recognized thought leader and a top-rated keynote speaker on innovation, creativity, reinvention, and hyper-growth leadership. His keynotes are focused not only on inspiring audiences but also sharing actionable strategies to drive meaningful outcomes. He is also a two-time New York Times best-selling author of three books, he’s a weekly contributor to Inc. MagazineForbes, and the Detroit Free Press, and a professional jazz guitarist. He has twice been named the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year, and is a President Obama Champion of Change Award recipient. 

    Listen to the Show:

    What You’ll Learn From This Episode:

    • The three things to know about creative disruption and how to implement it in our lives. 
    • How to unlock your creative capacity by simply recognizing that it is a learned skill.
    • How you can overcome the stagnation of brainstorming with "role-storming".
    • Why Josh looks at hacking as a tool that can also be used for good.
    • The mindset of compasses over maps to empower ourselves to carve the best route.
    • How to put yourself out of business by constantly being in a state of reinvention.
    • Josh’s parting piece of wisdom to focus on creating your own art and possibilities in the world.

    Featured On The Show:

    BOOST Bonus: 7 Daily Habits That Can Unlock Your Creativity, According to Science

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    Episode 26: How to Advise Start-ups and Find Your Product/Market Fit with Ben Foster

    Today’s featured guest is Ben Foster. Ben is a full-time product advisor who’s currently working with over a dozen start-ups up and down the East Coast, through his firm, Foster Innovation. He has a top notch reputation amongst entrepreneurs and venture capitalists who are eager to get his guidance as they scale their companies.

    Previously, Ben was the VP of Product Management and User Experience at OPower, a company he helped lead to a $1 billion IPO and was later bought by Oracle. Ben started his career in the first big Internet boom and rose through the ranks at eBay in the early 2000’s and he hasn’t looked back since.

    Listen to the Show:

    What You’ll Learn From This Episode:  

    • The three things to know about working as an advisor to start-ups.
    • Why Ben coaches his clients to be product-driven rather than services-driven.
    • A good business model for working with early-stage start-up companies.
    • How Ben has built his business based mostly on referral and word-of-mouth.
    • Start-up do's and don'ts. 
    • Why it's critical to understand what your business is good at and how it really functions.
    • How Ben has separated himself from other advisors and sets professional boundaries to ensure quality work and enough personal time.

    Featured On The Show:

    BOOST Bonus:  Product/Market Fit: What it Really Means, How to Measure it, and Where to Find It

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