Becoming Legendary Don't drown in the Quo

December 14, 2017

Business Sharing

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Jones @ 6:00 pm

Business Sharing – Week Fifty-Six

Prayer went well today. We didn’t do anything much different today. We all went around and talked about the businesses represented – Josh’s Lubbock lawn care and Liz’s Lubbock catering, my Heating and cooling and Ches’ fire damage claims business. All of that seemed to be in good working order. We did ask about Josh’s dad and he said that little had changed. He wasn’t going to go up there to see him unless things took a more serious turn. We did spend some time being silent before God and I think we each got some peace added from that.

As for the larger business gathering, they decided to have people from the group stand up and tell about the ins and outs of their businesses. Each person, three this week, told about how things had changed since the owners had started coming to this meeting. All of the reports were positive. One of them, which came from the owner of a florist shop, reported that she had tried several of the tips given by the speakers and had seen enormous growth in both profits and worker satisfaction. She said that the entire culture of her workplace had shifted from one of kinda lazy to one that was thriving and exciting. She attributed it to her implementation of providing a living wage and taking her staff on an evaluation retreat. This woman named Jan was appreciative for her time at the group and she gave credit to everyone for being willing to stand by her as made good changes. Another guy who was a travel agent said similar things but said that changes at his company were occurring almost daily. He could see that his staff was taking more charge of the work given to them and he was happy for that. He wasn’t having to “pull teeth” to get things done – things were just moving along smoothly.

 

These reports were good for me. I know that I too have seen great strides made in my company and that I was becoming of a healthy change agent who cared about creating a solid work environment. My employees had certainly become more invested in my company as it became our company.

 

So readers, what kind of report can you give as to the condition of your business over the past year? How have you made healthy changes to you business and what have the results been? I’m interested in hearing if you have seen shifts simply by reading about my summaries of these larger gatherings. Feel free to send me updates so I can see if my blog is helping anyone. Thanks in advance…

December 8, 2017

A Visionary Plan for Business Success – Week Fifty-Four

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Jones @ 5:19 pm

A Visionary Plan for Business Success – Week Fifty-Four
This week at the business meeting it was my turn to speak to the larger gathering. I was nervous. I was glad that the Pre-K administrator joined our prayer group today. She prays with power and power was what I needed to prepare me for speaking in front of these very smart business owners. Liz and Josh joined in asking for peace and wisdom and I appreciated the support. I’m not much of a public speaker, but I thought that I should at least share some things that had not been mentioned up to this point. We also prayed for Liz’s catering business, Josh’s Lubbock lawn care stuff and Ches (the fire claims adjuster) and everything felt good. God was really with us today – or at least I felt more of His presence. Some times my spiritual antenna is not properly aimed.

As for my leading the larger business meeting I needed to have water close by my side as it felt like my tongue and taste buds were dried out. Do you ever have that sense of dry mouth where you cannot even get words to come out? I hate that feeling but I had it today. I felt like a young kid about to give a show and tell presentation or talk about a book report I had done. Anyway, once I got past my initial fears, I was able to share about my topic, which actually comes from the Bible. I used the story of Nehemiah as the background for my talk since this story seems to hold all of the steps of how to lead a group to make something happen. I made sure to hand out papers for people so they didn’t have to pull out their phones and buy a Bible app. It gave key verses and of course some fill-in-the-blanks for those who need those. I talked about how the first step on getting people to start working alongside you for the common good of any company is to enter into the task humbly. Often times, we think we have to build up some huge confidence that can turn into pride when taking on a new project. I talked about how this was a mistake and how it could make people feel more pressure than is necessary. The second thing I shared is that we need to actually go and see what the project needs. We cannot rely on others to tell us what a situation requires. We need to go and evaluate the costs and plan out the stages for development. After all, it is our business and we should know what we are getting into. The third thing I talked about was how we needed to clearly communicate a vision and a plan to the other leaders around us – get them to buy into the process before it begins – make sure that the key leaders are on board. The fourth thing I talked about was how we needed to staff properly for each specific project – have all the right people at all of the right places to make sure that when problems come up that there would not be a total surrender – a sense of failure that would suck the confidence out of the group. That’s all I had time to share this week. I knew I was going a little long and that the other business leaders were getting fidgety so I concluded there and said I would be willing to share again the following week if they wanted to hear what I had to say. Everyone was nice to me about what I had to say. The lady who ran the short-term furnished housing units made a special effort to tell me how good it was to hear me using the Bible as an application for business leaders. I thanked her and everyone else for their questions and for their support.

So readers, have you ever read the story of how Nehemiah went from cupbearer to the king to being the Governor a long-suffering Jewish people? I think it tells us all we need to know about how to organize a major project and see it through to fulfillment, but I want to know what you think…Feel free to comment. Thanks in advance.

November 29, 2017

Targeted TV Ads – Week Forty-Eight

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Jones @ 7:29 pm

Targeted TV Ads – Week Forty-Eight

Liz wasn’t able to make it to prayer or to the large gathering today because of pressing needs at her Lubbock catering group today. They had a non-profit that was holding a golf tournament and she was the one who needed to oversee all of the plans that was going on in the early morning. She usually had her assistant to cover such things but her assistant was out due to sickness. Josh and I talked a bit and spent most of our time praying for our businesses and family situation. Josh told me that he was learning to hear from God more, using the Bible as his foundation. I thought that this was a mature move on his part. We both have had good weeks coming into this meeting and we looked forward to what was coming in the larger gathering.

As for the larger gathering we had a TV executive and leadership coach come and speak to us about how to use targeted TV to speak into the lives of viewers and potential customers. He told us how using commercials that were properly placed to reach viewers was a key to using visuals and music to get people to hear our messages. This guy was not just pitching his own business to get us to buy from him, but was speaking generally about how powerful television can be to grab people’s attention and to hold their attention after the commercial was over. He suggested using well-vetted marketing firms to create a brand and a consistent message and then to do best practices to get media buys that would fit our specific markets. He showed a few commercials and told us the goods and the bads of each one. The one that stuck with me was one done by the short-term furnished housing firm represented by the folks that came to this movie. Anyway, It was a slick presentation and one that stuck with me. I have not used television ads lately since I thought people would simply fast forward past them. But after hearing this guy speak, I am wondering about trying them again. I figured if I was able to create an ad that was to the point and even funny so that people would not fast forward as much and would accept the message as put forth in the ad. Who knows? I didn’t think that ads could be put together so simply but after hearing how affordable it could all be, I might spend some of my profits to add TV to my marketing mix.

So readers, what do you think about using TV commercials in this day and age? How would you craft your message to gather in new clients? What message would you try to put out in television land so that your ad would stick in the minds of viewers? I hope you can further convince me of the value of this medium.

Business Networking – Week Forty-Seven

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Jones @ 7:26 pm

Business Networking – Week Forty-Seven

I had to make fire insurance claims at my office this week due to someone accidentally blowing out one of our machines. I’m not sure exactly how this led to a fire or caused the damage that it did, but it happened and I was not happy about it. The guy who handled my insurance claim is the Texas public adjuster guy who spoke at the larger gathering a few weeks back and handled it perfectly. There’s still a lot that needs to be fixed, but I didn’t let that get to me and I didn’t get angry at my employees who let this happen on their watch. Still I let this be my prayer request for the week – that it all would work out for the good and that I could stay patient. Liz and Josh had fairly normal weeks and so we just all lifted up some generalities and asked God to deal with those things that were unseen for the moment – for Him to go before us and to make us thankful as days passed by us. It was just a time of refreshment and we all needed it on this tired morning.

As for the larger group, we didn’t have a set speaker but we had individual announcements made at the beginning. I mostly ignored those because I knew I didn’t have any extra time to give anything else. After the announcements, we were encouraged to go around and meet three people we hadn’t met yet – to not only exchange banal pleasantries but to see if there were ways that our businesses could help one another. This was a nice break from the typical lecture that we usually have – not that I don’t learn a lot from each one, but it’s nice to shake it up a but from time to time. Also, since there have been so many new people coming in the past few weeks I knew that there were quite a few people who I had never met. I’m not the most outgoing guy – definitely not an extrovert – but I made the effort nonetheless. The first person I met was a female executive named Jennifer who was on the top level of a marketing firm in town. I was intrigued by what she did and asked her if she had any people on staff who could help me better brand my company and who could get me on track with Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for my website. She said that they could service any of those things and more if I needed it. I asked her about pricing and she gave me a ballpark approximation of cost. It didn’t seem like that much money for what her company was offering. We exchanged cards (because she said that she would certainly be needing help with office and home heating, cooling and plumbing. The second and last person I met (due to time constraints) was a guy who did full-time writing. This guy named Ben posted on Facebook and Twitter for many companies in Lubbock, but he was not only a social media savant. Ben also wrote books – both fiction and non-fiction. He said that if he ever had a bestseller he wouldn’t be doing the social media stuff anymore. He would be able to retire that side of his creative writing and focus on pumping out entertaining novels, etc. I told him what I did and he took one of my cards and said that he would definitely be in touch when the need arose.

It was nice to meet these two and actually get to see how diverse the leaders in this group are. I’m sure if I met everyone in the group I would find an entire constellation of industries. It was a good week for group. I look forward to the next one.

November 15, 2017

Borrowing to Avoid the Plateau

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Jones @ 7:13 pm

Borrowing to Avoid the Plateau – Week Forty-Four

Thirteen groups of three gathered this morning for business prayer time – how cool it is to see a consistent movement amongst colleagues. I wonder how many of them have instituted some sort of prayer time at their workplaces. It would be cool to have evaluated what God is doing in all of these places and people since they began getting serious about brining God into their businesses. As for my group, Liz said that catering in Lubbock has gotten a few new competitors in the past month. She said they are challenging her to dig her heels in and market her business better. Josh didn’t have much to say about his Lubbock landscaping business but gave a new report about the fire damage claim he had settled. It was nearing a successful closure. I didn’t have anything specific except to ask for peace. I have been feeling more anxious lately and I cannot put my finger on why. As all of you know, anxiety makes it very hard to function as well as we would like to. I’m usually a confident person. I think my faith is weak in some areas.

As for the larger business gathering we had a guy talk to us who runs a swimming pool installation business. He talked to us about how and when to seek a loan to ramp up and expand our businesses. He told us that sometimes we know we need to grow in equipment and with staff but that we don’t have the money on hand to go ahead and blossom. He mentioned how to use equity and collateral to get the best loans. He also suggested several places that he had found that offered perks for small and large businesses looking to expand. One thing he said that stood out to me was that there are plenty of institutions that want to loan money. He went on to say that this reality leads to our being able to have these lending companies compete for our business. He said that we should talk to at least five of them before choosing one. He told us not to be scared to go for it in this area because if we hesitate at times of growth, we will plateau and typically go into a free fall mode. A guy who works with fire insurance claims (he runs a business out of Lubbock and Dallas)  asked some poignant questions that cleared up some questions I had. They were very specific questions and I always appreciate those.

I did take out one small loan in the past to get some new and bigger tools as well as to get some trucks to haul our teams around town to do our work. It ended up being a good situation and it helped me to grow. But it has been quite some time and I will give some careful thought to what this speaker said. Maybe I do need to expand in the near future. Why rest on my laurels when I could be expanding.

So readers, what do you think about acquiring money from lending institutions to get your business moving? Have you ever done this sort of thing and if so, what were the pros and the cons? Let me know in your comments.

Until next time…

November 2, 2017

Smoke Damage Help

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Jones @ 5:36 pm

Smoke Damage Help

When a fire happens at your home and business, it’s not just a fire damage claim that you need to file. You need to also make an insurance claim for all of your property that has been affected by smoke damage. So much of the porous furniture and carpets are ruined by smoke damage and need to be replaced. This is where a company like Abba Claims comes in – These professionals know their stuff and can help you with both fire damage and smoke damage claims that occur as a result of a fire. It’s not enough (and it might not even be smart) to just deal with your insurance company on your own. You need an independent Insurance claims adjuster to help you navigate the often difficult process of regaining the money you will need to replace all of the damaged property you own.

I’m wondering: How many of you out there have tried to take on your insurance companies on your own and have found yourself fighting a battle over the correct amounts of your claim? How many of you, if you had it to do all over again, would employ professionals to go before you and make sure that you won these battles?

That’s what I am saying in this little article: Don’t risk going at it alone. You probably won’t get what you need to replace your valuables and you will be stuck without using experienced pros who know how to fight for you and get you what you need. If you live in Texas, hire a Texas Adjuster from Abba Claims today (www.abbaclaims.com). You will be so happy that you did.

If you do choose to hire them, I want to hear about your experiences. All I’ve heard before is that they do a wonderful job for their clients and I’d love to hear more success stories. Feel free to comment if this is your experience. Thanks in advance.

October 3, 2017

A Leader of Change

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Jones @ 7:22 pm

A Leader of Change

I’ve been working a little bit for a man named Dr. Andy Neillie, who is a Fortune 500 keynote speaker and leadership coach. He has spoken to and coached thousands of people so that their leadership styles and dynamics are sound and effective. He is known as a leader who teaches other leaders how to lead. During the short time I’ve had to get to know him, I have realized that it’s been a total pleasure to promote him to the corporate sphere. If I was a business leader, I would do whatever I could to attend one of his seminars or to have him come in to my company as a consultant – he is such a motivator and he doesn’t act like he is some kind of guru. He’s humble and just straight up good at his job.

Anyway, I wanted to make some comments about one of his blogs because it really made me think about the two sides of leadership development – going on the offensive (like in baseball) and staying on the defensive (like in cricket) – (yes, he compares leadership to baseball and cricket – cool, right). He says that both of these leadership styles need to be activated at different times to make sure that businesses thrive. He says that some leaders only employ one strategy or the other and this leads to trouble. He suggests that everyone needs to go for it and be bold in their decision making at certain times, but he also says that there are times for more cautious movements to keep a company from falling apart.

 Good stuff I think. I know that I have usually employed the super defensive approach in business – just trying to stay as far away from the tops of the highest peaks and keeping my companies running in safe mode. I have not been willing to challenge my employees to become daring leaders when they needed a strong push. I have let rotten behaviors exist for far too long in my organizations instead of boldly handling them and getting rid of them. This defensive approach has cost me on several occasions but I plan on starting to utilize some of Neillie’s offensive suggestions so I don’t fall into that imbalanced spot again.

 So readers, what do you think about offensive and defensive maneuvers for leaders in business? Have you ever taken an imbalanced approach like me? If so, what happened? I’m interested in hearing about your leadership styles, so hit me with your best comments. Thanks in advance.

September 14, 2017

Houston: The Aftermath

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Jones @ 4:23 pm

Houston: The Aftermath

Now that Hurricane Harvey is gone, it’s time for individuals and families to recover. There is so much damage to overcome and so many emotional struggles to work through. The last thing any of you victims need is being lowballed by Insurance companies who want to settle claims for cheap. This is why it’s so important to get in touch with a Houston Public Adjuster who knows what he/she is doing. Public Adjusters can become your partners when dealing with Insurance companies so that you get much more money than you expected. Money won’t solve everything, but it sure does a lot for people who have flood insurance and see that their houses have been destroyed. Getting a livable home back that is filled with new possessions can help to provide some sense of security for all of you who lost everything.

So, I want to make a strong suggestion to call up one of the many excellent Texas Public Adjusters and to talk to them about how they can help you rise back up and find some normalcy.  I recommend one such group called Abba Claims (www.abbaclaims.com) because they fight for their clients and do so passionately.  Check out their website and get in touch as soon as possible.  Don’t go at this alone.  It’s not worth it.

So readers, who would you recommend as a good Public Adjuster?  Have you had success with Abba Claims or some other company that helps people get back up on their feet?  Let me know in your comments so that all of us can start to heal.

 

September 13, 2017

Installing Holiday Lighting

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Jones @ 5:47 pm

Installing Holiday Lighting

Football is back on television and this fall season will soon turn its way into winter. The holiday season is quickly closing in on all of us and I cannot believe it. It seems like Christmas carols and Christmas shopping and Christmas lighting along with the rest of the holiday happenings was just yesterday. And there is a lot to get ready for so I suggest that we all get started on planning for it as soon as possible. Who needs the stress of the post-Thanksgiving rush and the Black Friday crush? With some good planning, we can all be happier when those times roll around and we aren’t running around like chickens with our heads cut off.

In this season before the season before the season, I have a specific suggestion that should help you stay in good health and make your life more beautiful. What is this intriguing suggestion? I’m recommending something that has helped me immensely in the past: Hiring professionals to decorate the external part of your house with holiday lighting.

Now why is this so important?

I suggest professionals because there are so many statistics out there that say that there are lots of serious injuries happening yearly to people determined to hang up their own lights – people climbing up on their own roofs and trying to stay stable while handling intricate processes. Truth is, about a thousand people a year who aren’t used to being so balanced and so skilled fall off of their roofs and are injured in their falls. Who needs a hospital stay at Christmas time? Or ever? That would be a painful and expensive holiday season for you. So, don’t DIY this year. No need to become a statistic.

Connected to this point, I want to recommend that you go ahead and book your professional holiday lighting company as soon as possible. What I’ve found is that the really good companies who do this sort of thing, get their schedules booked up before Thanksgiving. So, don’t wait on this deal – go ahead, do some research and get on this now. You’ll be happy you did.

Okay – that’s all I’ve got on that subject, other than to say that if you live in the Lubbock area and want the best in the holiday lighting business, you might want to call up Lubbock Roots today. Check them out on the web at www.lubbockroots.com and then make a call.

 

That’s it. Hope I helped you out. Be blessed.

September 5, 2017

Houston Floods: Is there any good news?

Filed under: Uncategorized — John Jones @ 4:45 pm

Houston Floods: Is there any good news?

As a fellow Texan, I have been so shaken by the destruction that has been hitting Houston for weeks. Hurricane has decimated lives and property all over Houston and it is just now that there is a bit of respite. But it wasn’t just the storm itself that was hard – it is the aftermath of the destruction that is going to linger for a long time. I send my prayers out to all of the sufferers in that area and up and down the southern coast of Texas. May they be lifted up and restored now and not later.

With that being said, I want to help my readers out a bit by making a recommendation for handling this aftermath. There are going to be a lot of insurance claims being made so that people can get their possessions and property back. And it’s never a fun process dealing with insurance companies by yourself. So, if you have been hit with this storm and have suffered under this flood damage, I want to strongly suggest that you get in touch with Abba Claims, a top-notch Houston Public Adjuster that can come alongside you as you fight for the money that is due to you. A lot of people who go through such damage claims try to do it on their own but find that they cannot get back what they need to start over properly. But if you have these professionals working with you, you will find this process so much easier. The people at Abba Claims (www.abbaclaims.com) have handled thousands of cases like these and can handle yours too. So, don’t go at it alone. Use this company to help you get it all back as soon as possible. I have heard of their work in handling these cases and all I know is that the people who work with them have only the best things to say about them.

With all of that being said, I want to throw out one more huge “Sorry” and “God bless” to you victims of Hurricane Harvey. This is a terrible time in Texas history and I hope and pray for all of you who are going through it – even now.

Readers, have you ever had any experience with this sort of destruction? Are you doing anything to help the survivors of this tragedy? Please leave comments about what else can be done for these Texas folks. It could have been any of us and if we can join together to help these people out, we need to do just that…

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