How's your month of April? I had a fantastic month, and May is just getting started. I'm fighting off a bad cold that's got me dizzy and dehydrated. But business is booming! It seem like just yesterday that I bought my mini-van, now I got an office and two new interns working for me and my first part time person, and business partner. Don't worry, we'll invite you for an open house once our office is ready for the public, right now it's CHAOS.
Small Business Boot-Camp
April 19-22 at the beautiful Kentucky Ranch style South Thompson Inn: a group of entrepreneurs and professionals gathers, learning and empowering each other by sharing expertise, jokes and inspiration. I really enjoyed myself and brought a lot of ideas, tools and actions steps back home with me. We kicked off Thursday night with Isabelle Mercier and Margarita Romano’s presentation “How do you measure success?”, in which Isabelle shared with us how she and her partner grew their graphic design company 400% each year for 7 years, then sold it and went traveling for a year around the world. Now they are starting a consulting firm called LeapZone Strategies. I saw a lot of myself in her - her ‘ type A’ eager beaverness, the same impatience in waiting for the ferry or anything else in life, and the desire for real long lasting results for our clients. She was witty, inspirational and high energy! At her next seminar “Plan Your Ultimate Success”, I took away a ton of ideas for appreciating my staff, clients and suppliers. Too bad I don’t have her design skills or eye for photography. One nugget of wisdom: check her out at www.leapzonestrategies.com
The ranch was great with mountains on one side, and a river with a mirror like surface on the other, surrounded by endless grass fields with grazing horses and cows. A real serene place. Between seminars, I relaxed in a porch chair and just bathed in the sun. I made friends with an investment banker, Kamal Basra, who shared her life stories of growing up as the “smart girl” being married at 21 in an arranged marriage, and having children. She explained how youthful lust can turn into a deep and respectful loving friendship after many years of marriage. I loved her optimism and open mindedness. She too was raised by a strong single immigrant mother in Canada and we instantly connected.
Another presenter that really impressed me was Ken Keis from CRG Group, who did the Friday morning seminar, “Discover your pathway to Entrepreneurial Success”, then followed it up that evening with his Keynote speech, “Secrets to Building a Successful Business. He showed us a picture of himself as a youngster on his family’s dairy farm with his prize cow, and talked about the up and downs of his various businesses. He walked us through the Enterpreneurial Style Indicator, and I turned out to be Affective, Behavioral, Interpersonal and Cognitive. Ken made it abundantly clear that the most people are unhappy with their jobs, by using stats: 70-80% of the employees that respond to polling reply that they are mildly irritated by or at the worst, loath their job. 82% of executives and 78% of employees are currently looking for another job, and 33% of employees start to look for another job on the first day of their current job. Ken said people are unhappy because they lack clarity. Once they know themselves, their psychological needs, physical needs, emotional needs, etc they can better determine what their definition of happiness is. Once that is achieved, it’s much easier for them to achieve their goals, because they will then be emotionally tied and driven to achieve it, instead of merely motivated to achieve it.
If you’d like to utilize some of Ken’s incredible tools and processes to find what determines your personal happiness and set real goals, visit www.crgleader.com
Recently, I accompanied my stepfather and my family to the Richmond 911 Awards, which once a year celebrates the unsung heroes of the Fire Fighters, RCMP, Coast Guards, Ambulance, etc. It was a real fancy set up with a Jazz quartet, and a delicious meal, but what really got to people was the emotional stories of rescue and amazing service.
I always stuns me that people will gladly sacrifice their lives for another in the face of fire, water, against the elements at their worst. Everyone honoured was so humble and always trying to shy away from well-deserved recognition. I learned of a number of volunteer/charitable groups that provide support for displaced people due to inclement weather, and other emergency needs. The Auxiliary Group puts in about 6000 hours for each member, and they are made up of 60 plus members! I shared this news with my uncle-in -law who used to be a cop in London, England, and he told me that emergency staff in UK gets paid minimum wage and no such recognition. I’m very proud that The City of Richmond, and the Richmond Chamber of ? puts on such a wonderful event to celebrate the best in our society. Get your $75 Award tickets next ? YEAR, maybe you’ll find a rowdy coast guard as a date.
Buffet Blowout: Fundraising for BC Adoptive Families
April 25, was a night I will never forget, as ISES put on it’s annual signature showcase for the Catering and Décor professionals in our industry. With the elements of earth, wind, and fire as a theme and the Vancouver Art Gallery as a backdrop, our senses of sight, smell, taste were masterfully played on by the incredible efforts of the participating companies. They were able to raise over $1000.00 for The Adoptive Families of BC, and had a hoot with our competitive caterers and decorators. Fire( Company name) won the award for Best Decor, and Earth( Company Name) won Best Catering and People’s Choice Awards. I personally thought Wind (Company name) should win the Best Decor Award. Go to www.isesvancouver.com to see the amazing pictures – including a wheatgrass lawn growing edible fruits, veggies, and meat! Many thanks to the 14 dedicated volunteers, who truly made the event fun and effortless. We also got into the Epoch times this week, check out the back of the paper, see lady in red flames costume table.
The Complete Guide to Socioeconomic Models
Socialism - You have two cows and give one to your neighbor.
Communism - You have two cows. The state takes both and give you milk.
Fascism - You have two cows. The state takes both and sells you some milk.
Nazism - You have two cows. The state takes both and shoots you.
Bureaucratism - You have two cows. The state takes both, shoots one, milks the other, then throws the milk away.
Surrealism - You have two giraffes. The government requires you to take harmonica lessons.
An American Corp - You have two cows. You sell one, and force the other to produce the milk of four cows. Later, you hire a consultant to analyse why the cow has dropped dead.
The Enron Model - You have two cows but tell everyone that you 10.
A French Corp - You have two cows. You go on strike, riot and block the roads because you want three cows.
A Japanese Corp - You have two cows. You redesign them so they are ten times smaller and produce 20 times the milk.
A German Corp - You have two cows. You re-engineer them so they live to be about 100 years, eat once a month and milk themselves.
An Italian Corp - You have two cows, you don't know where they are. You decide to go have an espresso and then a gelato.
A Swiss Corp - You have 2 cows. None of them belong to you. You charge the owner for storing them.
A Chinese Corp - You have two cows. You have 300 people milking them. You claim you have high bovine productivitiy and arrest the newsman who reported the real situation.
An Indian Corp - You have two cows. You worship them.
A British Corp - You have two cows. Both are mad.
An Iraqi Corp - Everyone thinks you have lots of cows. You tell them that you have no cows but they still invade your country. You still have no cows, but at least now you are part of a democracy...
A Welsh Corp - You have two cows. The one on the left looks very attractive.
An Australian Corp - You have twon cows. Business seems pretty good. You close the office for the day and go for a few beers to celebrate.
- British GQ April 2007 issue