Archive

Posts Tagged ‘SCV’

NUTS ‘N BOLTS LEADERSHIP

November 12, 2012 Leave a comment

I came across this book called “How To” Strategies and Practical Tips For Leaders at ALL Levels” by Eric Harvey and Paul Sims. It appealed to me as a refresher to those of us who have been in management for a long time as well as a training tool for people just beginning in that arena.

I’ve copied some pieces of their message below:

“If you’ve been in management for any length of time, you’ve undoubtedly come   to realize that it’s a multi-faceted profession – a somewhat complex calling that includes the classic and academically described duties of “planning, directing, controlling, etc.” … and much more. 

Like a coin, leadership has two sides. There’s the proactive side – the actions you initiate to positively affect people and their performance. And there’s the reactive side – the actions you take in response to unanticipated issues and situations. The key to these equally important sides is ACTION. And the way we see it, in order to act properly and effectively in these fast-paced times, your management “toolbox” needs to be filled with solid nuts and bolts techniques.

Here are some “How To” tips that should help:

  • Address Performance Problems Early. One of the surest ways to demotivate employees is allowing people to do sub-par work. When that happens, others have to pick up the slack. You owe it to the rest of the team to address an employee’s deficiencies as soon as you become aware of them. Waiting only increases the intensity of everyone else’s bad feelings.
  • Think “Development.” Make developing the members of your team (and yourself) one of your top priorities. Besides providing formal training, pursue opportunities for building skills, awareness, and confidence that require minimal time and resources (e.g., watching videos, distributing industry publications, mentoring).
  • Always Give the “Why.” A combined lesson from Human Nature 101 and Common Sense 101: There’s a much better chance that people will be motivated and give their enthusiastic support if they understand the reason behind a goal, assignment, or decision. So, always follow the what with the why
  • Teach Business Literacy. One powerful way to get people motivated is to teach them the business of the business. The more people understand how a successful organization is run, the better they’ll be able to contribute to your overall mission and the bottom line … and feel like they truly are a part of your success.
  • Let your employees lead. Help others on your team develop by letting them take the lead on certain activities and projects. Most of us like “being in charge” – at least some of the time. It’s a great way to build skills, commitment, and responsibility.
  • Involve them in Decision Making. Have an important decision to make? Let employees decide! Or at least ask for their ideas and suggestions. They are, after all, the ones who will feel the impact the most. Besides, you’ll probably end up with a better decision – one that your people will be inclined to support because they helped make it.
  • Keep them informed.Hold regular “state of the business” meetings to keep everyone informed on what’s happening within the organization (future plans, new products or services, planned purchases, etc.). Make sure people do NOT feel “kept in the dark.
  • Spread the wealth.Rotate the drudgework so that everyone shares part of the load. Likewise, spread around the high-profile assignments so that every person has an occasional opportunity to strut his or her stuff.
  • Respect their time. If you expect employees to believe that their work is important, you have to believe it, too. More importantly, you have to behave like you believe it! Don’t expect people to drop whatever they’re doing every time you need something. Instead, ask if they have a few minutes to chat. Better yet, ask for a time when they’ll be available to meet with you.”

All of these are very solid tips that can help all of us become and/or remain better leaders for our businesses.

Andrea McAfee

Bayless Engineering

www.baylessengineering.com

Personal Branding – The Social Network Way

September 17, 2012 Leave a comment

I attended the Professionals In Human Resources Conference (PIHRA) at the end of August 2012.  Besides exceptionally interesting workshops and keynote speakers, I learned new terminology “Employer Branding”.  Companies are creating their own Social Network brand in-part to recruit potential employees.  Did you know, according to Jobvite Social Recruiting Survey results 2012: As much as 92% of recruiting is now happening through social networks!   Most popular social networks being used for recruiting:  LinkedIn 93%, Facebook 66% and Twitter 54%.  Since implementing social recruiting, 49% saw an increase in quality of candidates, 43% reported an increase in candidate quality, 20% reported it took less time to hire, 31% saw increase in employee referrals, according to the survey.  Has your company created its Social Media Brand?  As you may know I have been advocating “Personal Branding” for jobseekers for several years; interesting, the way Social Media is changing the method individuals are recruited and employed.

John Silver

ITT Technical Institute

jsilver@itt-tech.edu

Paralysis of Analysis

August 13, 2012 Leave a comment

Did you know, many companies are now being held back by the “paralysis of analysis.” Maybe it’s time to jettison some of data analysis and return to conventional thinking and develop a more creative vision for action. A sense of urgency and the ability to make prophetic decisions, not necessary data driven decisions, may end up being the difference between being successful and unsuccessful in a competitive world.

John Silver

ITT Technical Institute

Get Your “Generations Working Together”

July 30, 2012 2 comments

This topic is something many of us employers don’t think about until we find dissention within our workforce.

If you’re looking to narrow the gaps that inherently exist between different workplace generations the above titled book by Laura E. Bernstein offers the following tips each manager needs to do!

  • Acknowledge that everyone wants to be treated with dignity and respect. And, remember that those expectations will likely be defined differently by different people.
  • Give coworkers, customers, and suppliers the same benefit of the doubt that you wish from them.
  • Presume that everyone you interact with is motivated by good intentions – unless they prove otherwise.
  • Accept that you can learn from others’ different life experiences, perspectives, and approaches – just as others can learn from yours.
  • Make an effort to focus on your similarities with others rather than your differences. Find, appreciate, and celebrate the common ground you share with those you work with … and work for.
  • Be willing to flex your natural style and preferences in order to work more effectively with all of your colleagues. Increased cooperation and collaboration results in greater success … for EVERYONE!
  • Be open and tactfully honest about your personal “hot buttons” (i.e., recurring sources of tension or conflict) and mindful of the things that bother others.
  • Remember that each individual brings something special (and needed) to the table … each person represents a piece that must be present in order for your organizational puzzle to be complete.
  • Focus on what really matters: productivity, teamwork, customer service, and mutual success.
  • Accept the fact that how you treat, deal with, and respond to others is purely and simply a matter of your own choosing.

I believe that many of these practices should be followed not only in business but are equally important to observe in our daily lives.

Andrea McAfee

Bayless Engineering & Manufacturing

www.baylessengineering.com

“Rule #32 – Enjoy the Little Things” ~ Zombieland

Shamelessly reposted from a blog post by Pam Capistrano, our CEO, and my lovely wife!  Zombies – yes!

This morning while driving I was reminded that it’s the little things in life that we need to appreciate.  My son had to point out that this is also Rule #32 in Zombieland, so it must be important!

Our daily lives seem to become more high stress and demand more and more each day.  As an entrepreneur in a state that is considered the 8th largest economy in the world, I feel the pressure of success daily.  It is during these times that I need to remind myself to stop and appreciate the little things.

Below is a list of some little things that may make me smile.

  • Sunrises and Sunsets
  •  Puppy Breath
  • The smell of popcorn when you enter the movie theatre
  • The small cry of a newborn
  • Someone saying thank you after you go out of your way to be nice
  • Vacation with great friends
  • A warm breeze on a summer afternoon
  • The unexpected hoot of an owl while sitting on the porch swing
  • A loving, respectful spouse
  • Teenagers (I know weird, but imagine someone who has lost their child, I’m sure they’d love to be dealing with a teenager rather than their grief)
  • Spring flowers
  • Summer fruit

I could go on and on.  There are so many little things to be thankful for that we should stop and appreciate.  I hope that this post has helped you stop and take a minute to think of some of the things that make you smile.    I’d love to hear some of your favorite little things in life!

Scott Capistrano

www.statusnotquo.com

The Manager’s Communication Handbook

In trying to find ways to improve our company’s working environment I continually search for resources to help guide me in my efforts. Since most organizations often find communication problematic, “The Manager’s Communication Handbook” by David Cottrell and Eric Harvey addresses the issue. Here is an excerpt from the book’s introduction you may find interesting.

“What is the greatest frustration for most employees? Could it be they think they’re not getting paid enough? Or that the workplace is cramped or noisy? Maybe they think management expects too much from them? Could organizational bureaucracy or politics be number one on the frustration list? All of these possibilities are easy to imagine … and justify. However, in survey after survey, employees place communication problems at the top of their frustration list.

Communication?

Yes, communication. Most managers spend so much time and effort communicating it’s hard for them to believe it could be a major problem. The paradox is that while employees are frustrated by a perceived lack of communication with their managers, most managers feel they are outstanding communicators. In a recent study, researchers asked a group of managers to evaluate their personal communication skills. The study discovered that 90% of the managers rated their communication skills in the top 10% of all managers. Obviously, 80% of the managers think they are better communicators than they actually are. Do you think their perceptions are a little off from reality?

We often hear that “communication is the key” or “leadership is communication” or any number of slogans about the importance of communication. These slogans are common because they’re true – communication is critical. It’s one of the most powerful tools managers have in their “toolbox.” Communication can be as tactical as posting the daily numbers or as strategic and profound as sharing the purpose and vision of the organization.

With so much emphasis on communication, how could it be such a big problem?

Actually, communication may not be the problem, and communicating more may not be the solution. In most cases, employees don’t need more information. Most of the information they receive doesn’t get read; that which gets read is frequently not understood; and that which is understood is usually not remembered.

The real problem is that the communication being delivered is not the same as, or connected with, the message being received. In other words, managers’ communication is often filled with so much “static” that the message is not understood, supported, or accepted by employees. The static preventing connected communication could be many things including ambiguity, confusion, inconsistency, conflict, or distrust.

What causes this communication static?

One factor is the proliferation of communication methods in recent years – e-mail, voice mail, meetings, conference calls, cell phones, pagers, memos, video, intranets, newsletters, etc. With so many options, we tend to pay more attention to how we’re going to communicate than what we’re going to communicate. In other words, it’s more about the method than the message.

As a result, most managers think of communication as an activity as opposed to an outcome. The focus is on producing slick graphics, writing a clever memo, or delivering a great presentation, instead of creating commitment, passion, and enthusiasm among employees.

Another reason for the communication static is we’ve forgotten that true communication is a two-way process. Some of the technological advances that have made communication easier have also de-personalized it. It’s not enough to just put out a message and hope employees “get it.” We have to follow up to be certain we connected – to make sure the message received was the same one we intended to give.

To effectively eliminate communication static and build understanding, support, and acceptance, we need to make a shift and think of communication as an outcome. To do that, we want to look at communication from the receiver’s perspective. We should ask the question, “What is my desired outcome with this communication? What do I want employees to think, feel, and do after receiving my message?”

At a minimum, our objective should be for others to understand our communication. But employees can clearly understand the message and still not agree with it or be willing to follow our direction. The ultimate goal is to build support and acceptance – to have receivers internalize your message, to move them to action. Understanding is intellectual; support and acceptance are emotional. It’s like the difference between compliance and commitmentwhich one would you rather have from your coworkers?”

Andrea McAfee

www.baylessengineering.com

Business Valuation – in the Shark Tank

March 20, 2012 4 comments

My blog topic for today is a bit on the lighter side.  Ever seen the program on ABC named “Shark Tank”?  While it’s obviously an entertainment show, there are some incredibly interesting strategic and management aspects to the show.

In case you haven’t heard of the Show, here’s the quick synopsis from the Show’s web site:

The Sharks are back to continue their search to invest in the best products and businesses that America has to offer. The critically acclaimed Shark Tank gives budding entrepreneurs the chance to make their dreams come true, and possibly make a business deal that will make them a millionaire. Season Three continues to make TV history, with the Sharks offering over $6.2 million of their own money in investment deals to bankroll a creative array of innovative entrepreneurs.

The “Sharks” consist of people like Marc Cuban, owner and chairman of HDNet and owner of the Dallas Mavericks (among many other companies); Barbara Corcoran, Kevin O’Leary, Lori Greiner, Daymond John, and Robert Herjavec.

As a small business owner, I’m always extremely curious as to other business owner’s ideas, perceptions of value, and their plans to grow – and this show gives each of the entrepreneurs a crash course on what they’ve gotten right, and where they’re completely clueless.

If you’ve got the time and inclination, I would recommend checking it out – Fridays on ABC at 8pm.  Like most things, some episodes are great, while others are annoying – but you’ll definitely come away with new ideas, new motivations, and new strategies.

Scott Capistrano

Status Not Quo

www.statusnotquo.com

“HEY LEADER, WAKE UP AND HEAR THE FEEDBACK!”

March 11, 2012 18 comments

This quote, written by Eric Harvey reminds us of important leadership objectives that many business leaders often neglect or forget in the heat of everyday “doing business”.

His team turned to those who truly know and understand what effective leadership feels and looks like. They surveyed thousands of working individuals from a full range of professions, experiences, and geographic locations – asking them one simple question:

“Based on your experience, what is it that truly effective and highly respected leaders DO?”

Over 500 responses were received from employees, team members, and leaders from all levels around the world – of which 145 were selected and assembled within the 10 topic chapters that comprise this work.

Following are some quotes from the first chapter focusing on learning and development that resonated with me.

The growth and development of people is the highest calling of leadership.
Harvey S. Firestone

An effective leader should always prepare the next person to take on a leadership role. A good way to do this is to identify a potential leader on your team. When the leader has been identified, talk with the person to ensure they have the same goals that you have for them. If both of you agree, start working with that person by setting expectations, encouraging leadership courses, attending meetings with you – or in your place, assigning high-level duties, and be open if he or she has a different way of approaching situations than you.
Kathy Ibrahim, Burlington, North Carolina

Many leaders are so busy leading that they neglect to take time to think, vision, plan, and develop themselves as people.
Tommy Echols, Cicero, New York

Remember that knowledge and experience are not for your secret memory file. When you have the benefit of knowledge and experience, don’t brag about them or use them as weapons for chastising your team. Instead, use them as tools for development. Share your knowledge and
experience so that others may learn. It does not take anything away from you, and can come back to you in multiple ways through the success of your team.
Nancy Springler, New Orleans, Louisiana

As an author, speaker, and writers’ group leader, I’ve learned that while it’s great to be organized, goal oriented, and enthusiastic, be wary of enjoying the sound of your own voice. A violin solo may be beautiful but lacks the strength of many instruments blended into a mighty orchestra. Become a group maestro by making eye contact and being aware of body language and the emotion behind the words. An active listener absorbs and repeats or rephrases the speaker’s words and seeks clarification: “So what I’m hearing you say is … Is that right?” Remember: Effective Leaders Listen!
Virginia Nygard, Port St. Lucie, Florida

My goal is to make my team members more effective – and prepare them to become my bosses through the use of the 5 “E”s. Empathize, Encourage, Educate, Empower, and Expect.
Freddie Cogburn, Maryville, Tennessee

Support others in reaching their own goals by asking them on a regular basis how they are getting on with the task at hand and offer them your help or experience if they need it. You could perhaps give them an example of a project you were working on and how someone else helped you meet your goal.
Julia Reedshaw, Leeds, West Yorkshire, UK

AND THIS IS MY FAVORITE QUOTE:
Truly effective leaders must be PRESENT! With the pace of change, globalization, technology advancements, and doing more with less, whatever happened to management by walking around? Too often in today’s environment, leaders are so distracted that they are disconnected as to what is happening with their people. One-on-ones are put off for other “strategic priorities” and performance feedback is infrequent – missing opportunities for meaningful, timely, and productive personal development discussions. All of this can lead to a distrusting, disjointed, and disenchanted environment.

Effective leaders are accessible and present; they consistently engage with their people, give their people their full attention, view their people as a priority, and develop them accordingly. They align their actions with their words, do what they say they are going to do, and equally reward good performance, as well as
uphold the consequences for poor performance.

Effective communication – an essential attribute of leadership – can often be lost in today’s fast-paced world of technology! Don’t miss the opportunities that managing by walking around can reveal! When was the last time you stopped by the desk of a direct report and asked, “How are things going? … What can I do
to help?” Your PRESENCE matters!
Tasha Delaney, East Fallowfield, Pennsylvania

Harvey’s closing comment adds a perspective we all should remember:
As a manager, act with the understanding that your management role has an objective of developing and encouraging others to succeed by doing the right task at the right time … every day … every week … every month … to become the best they can possibly be.

Andrea McAfee

Bayless Engineering & Manufacturing

www.baylessengineering.com

 

Eat that Frog!

October 25, 2011 4 comments

With more on our plates every day and time seeming to slip by at an increasingly rapid pace, this unique approach to time management from a book by Brian Tracy called “Eat That Frog! 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time” resonated strongly with me.

Get More Done In Less Time = Eat That Frog.

If you are like me, you are overwhelmed with too much to do and too little time. As you struggle to get caught up, new tasks and responsibilities keep rolling in, like the waves of the ocean. Because of this, you will never be able to do everything you have to do.

For this reason, and perhaps more than ever before, your ability as a leader is to select your most important task at each moment, and then to get started on that task, get it done both quickly and effectively. To help you and others be more effective and efficient, we must remember the story about frogs!

Mark Twain once said that if the first thing you do each morning is to eat a live frog, you can go through the day with the satisfaction of knowing that that is probably the worst thing that is going to happen to you all day long. Your “frog” is your biggest, most important task, the one you are mostly likely to procrastinate on if you don’t do something about it. It is also the one task that can have the greatest positive impact on your life and resultsfor you and your organization.

The first rule of frog eating is this:
If you have to eat two frogs, eat the ugliest one first.

 This is another way of saying that if you and those you lead have two important tasks before you, start with the biggest, hardest, and most important task first. Discipline yourself to begin immediately and then to persist until the task is complete before you go on to something else.

Although it’s so much easier to push off the “ugliest frog” in favor of fighting fires and cleaning up all the odds & ends and easy fixes, I think that frog eating should be my goal!

Andrea McAfee

Controller

Bayless Engineering & Manufacturing

Never get comfortable

August 5, 2011 2 comments

Over last weekend, I briefly thought to myself “it sure would be nice if things settled down at SNQ – even briefly and we had a normal day”.

So what precipitated this thought?  Well, it seems to me that since day one of the formation of Status Not Quo, every day has been dynamic, challenging, and mildly stressful due to constant change.  Granted, most of our challenges have been positive (i.e. either fall under “opportunity” or “character building” lol). 

 However, as I reflect today (I’m writing this on a Monday), I admonish myself to “Never get comfortable”.  I constantly challenge other business owners and our clients to continuously reinvent themselves, or stagnate and get left behind.  While this is always our focus, it is hectic.

 The entire year of 2011 at SNQ has been crazy busy due to a move – consolidating and moving to a corporate office.  We went from completely virtual and decentralized, to a mix of the two with stronger centralization. 

 However, not one week after I sat down at the new office, we were faced with the potential of an incredible opportunity to move into two new areas of software development by absorbing/merging with another firm.  This will expand us into a multi-office company, and very possibly into needing an international presence in South America.  Talk about Distributed to Centralized and back to Distributed (insert rising stress meter here)!

 My point is to be thankful for change, and embrace that uncertainty.  Granted, many times it stems from a negative challenge – but we must still view those challenges as opportunities to change, leverage, reinvent, and grow.  The day things start getting boring around here is when I will really start to stress.  Take a well deserved break this weekend, but when you return on Monday, challenge yourself and get outside of your comfort zone.

 Scott Capistrano

Status Not Quo

http://www.statusnotquo.com

What’s Your Approach … Train or Hire the Skills Your Company Needs?

July 1, 2011 Leave a comment

Recently there have been numerous media pronouncements that, despite record unemployment levels, employers are finding skills shortages and mismatches as they look to add to their overall staffing levels.  A growing number of employers are taking the approach that, in order to keep staff levels at the optimal level and with the appropriate skill sets, they need to up-skill existing employees and then recruit at the easier to fill lesser skilled positions.

So what’s your company philosophy and why?  Are you enduring long recruitment cycles as you look for that “perfect” fit or are you taking the approach of increasing the skill levels of your existing employees through formal training, on-the-job training or a mixture of both?

Joe Klocko

Director, Center for Applied Competitive Technologies

College of the Canyons

 

Do You Work in a High-Integrity Organization?

May 29, 2011 1 comment

Recently I ran across this excerpt from “LEADING TO ETHICS” 10 Leadership Strategies For Building A High-Integrity Organization by Eric Harvey, Andy Smith, and Paul Sims.

Do You Work in a High-Integrity Organization?

High-integrity, ethical leaders:

Build Values and Ethics Awareness.
They regularly communicate and discuss the organization’s shared values, operating principles, and ethical standards – making sure they are understood, supported, and accepted at all levels.

Hold People Accountable.
They hold themselves and others accountable for ethical behavior. And they have zero-tolerance for values violations because they know that “one bad apple can spoil the bunch.”

Lead By Example.
They recognize that they earn the right to expect others to perform with integrity when they, themselves, “walk the talk.”

Use Values To Drive Decisions.
They apply the organization’s values and guiding principles when making decisions – whether big and strategic, or small and seemingly insignificant. They realize that ethics are displayed in everything we do, and everything we do counts.

Ensure In-Sync Policies and Practices.
They make sure that rules and standards support the organization’s values and ethics at every level. And, should an ethical dilemma occur, they welcome the opportunity to resolve the issue quickly and without fear of reprisal.

Pay Attention To Perceptions.
They pay close attention to the feelings, opinions, and reactions of their colleagues, their employees, the customers they serve, and everyone in their circle of influence. They realize that perceptions ARE reality when it comes to ethics and integrity.

Hire and Promote Ethical People.
They use the organization’s mission, vision, and values as criteria for hiring and promotion decisions. And, they ONLY select those individuals who believe in these principles and who behave with integrity.

This served as a reminder to me that there is more to “doing business” than just “doing business”. It also prompts one to look within their own organization (s) to learn whether not only they, themselves, but also management, and even employees measure up to these high standards of integrity.

Andrea McAfee

Controller

Bayless Engineering & Manufacturing

www.baylessengineering.com

All that I want

This is the text of my sister’s upcoming contest as a Toastmaster.  The message, as you will read, is ‘powerful’, and I wanted to share it with you.

The Rev. Billy Graham was recently asked: “Sir, what about this life has surprised you the most”?  His reply?  “Its brevity” A short time ago, I was a 17 year-old high school senior.  Now I am a 60 year-old social security senior.  I love being 60.  You see when I was in my late teens and early 30’s all I did was get married and divorced, married and divorced, and married yet again.  In my thirties, and early 40’s all I did was work.  I worked 50 and 60-hour weeks so I could buy stuff. Big stuff, little stuff, new stuff old stuff.  Your stuff.  My credit cards had skid marks and their own zip codes.  Then on Jan 4 1998, my life as I knew it ceased to exist.  My husband of 20 years, the absolute love of my life, the man I was supposed to grow old with, died of a sudden heart attack.  One minute he was on the racquetball court, and the next he was in the arms of Jesus.

Well meaning friends would often tell me. “Debby you are lucky, at least he didn’t suffer”.  No, he didn’t suffer; he left that for me to do.  And suffer I did.  Shortly after Larry died, I was in the hospital having major surgery.  Three weeks later my only surviving grandparent died. Me?  Back to the hospital, this time with carpel tunnel surgery.  The wind came along and blew the shingles off of my roof, my downstairs flooded, and the transmission fell out of my pick-up.  All this happened by August of that year.  Oh, I suffered!  I felt like the psalmist David when he cried out:” Hear me oh Lord.   Hear me Oh Lord and deliver me.”   I spent days on my knees because I had nowhere else to go.

When at last I began to emerge from that deep abyss, I realized something; I had spent the past 47 years living in fear.  You know that fear.  That “False Evidence Appearing Real”.  You see, I had always had all that I wanted and all that I needed.  Fear kept me from putting it together.  When I was busy getting married, all I wanted was to have a good marriage…All I needed was to be a better partner.  During my buying frenzy, I already had all I wanted; all I needed was to respect my possessions.  When my husband died, all I wanted was for the pain to end. All I needed was to accept that my life had changed forever.  Acceptance is the key to all of my problems.  For when I am disturbed, it is because I cannot accept some person, place, or situation and I will find no peace until I accept that person, place, or situation as being exactly the way it is supposed to be, because nothing — absolutely nothing — happens in God’s world by mistake.  What fear is keeping you from where you want to be?  The fear: “I’m too old… I’m not smart enough… I’ve never done that before?”  All lies to keep you from doing, being, having.  Pitiful or Powerful. We can be pitiful and live in fear, or we can be powerful and live our dreams.

Yes, the Rev. Graham was right, life is short.  Yesterday I was 20, this morning 45, and now I’m 60.  Yes, my hips are wider, but so is my smile.  Things that used to be up here are now down here but that’s just gravity, so who cares?  I don’t because I am living my dreams.  Since 2000, I have been parasailing in Thailand and salmon fishing in Alaska.  I have ridden the roller coaster atop the Stratus Sphere in Las Vegas, Nevada, and have rejoiced in the birth of my great-granddaughter.

Pitiful or powerful?  Release your fears.  Live your dreams.

Denise Henderson

New VIA Website!

The new VIA Website was prominently featured on the front page of the Business section in the Signal!  Check it out.

http://www.the-signal.com/section/24/article/38995/

Signal VIA Photo

Scott Capistrano, President of Status Not Quo and Kathy Norris, CEO of VIA. Photo courtesy of The Signal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Scott Capistrano

Status Not Quo

http://www.statusnotquo.com

Execution is everything

July 15, 2010 1 comment

Well, perhaps not everything, but the execution of a plan cannot be understated.  Planning and preparation are clearly very important, but too often people stop there.  My high school basketball coach said something very basic that has stuck with me through my entire career (not in basketball unfortunately lol) – “Complete the play …”.  His point was it didn’t matter how well the play was designed, how much passing you did, or how good you looked to the crowd – if you didn’t put the ball in the hoop at the end, it meant nothing.

Lisa Anderson, President of LMA Consulting Group, Inc. had a few things to say about this in a recent article found here: http://bit.ly/clAE0I

The article is named “Leadership to Accelerate Bottom Line Results” – in point #3, she discussed “Value execution”.  Here’s the part I loved: “Valuing execution has to be incorporated into the performance management system as well. Do not reward solely effort. Reward those who are willing to challenge the status quo.” … “Reward those who are willing to go the extra step to ensure success when they don’t know anyone is looking. “

This is something I try to continually stress within our company, Status Not Quo – be Objective Driven – at the end of the day, did you get the job “Done”?  Strive to be a Virtuoso at executing – in all things, and don’t settle for less.

Scott Capistrano, MBA, CPA

President
Status Not Quo

Not Your Ordinary Consulting Firm

Ph 888.767.0767
Fx 661.367.5311
www.statusnotquo.com | blog.statusnotquo.com

Most Important Step in Business?

“What is the most important step in business?’ is a favorite question I like to put to business people.  

The responses usually cover the range from “The decision to start in business,” to “The first sale,” to “The successful marketing campaign we initiated last year.”  Although the events cited certainly deserve a special place in the mind of any entrepreneur, the response that is my favorite is “The most important step in business is the next one!”

I like the latter response best because it reflects a forward-looking vision, not mere recognition of history.  Implicit in the statement is the realization that what got you to where you are is unlikely to be good enough to get you to where you want to be.  In today’s fast-paced, high technology world, success goes to the swift and agile over the big and strong. The great American humorist got it right when he said, “Even though you are on the right track, you will get run over if you just sit there!”

The most successful businesses are already working on their next step as their competitors are admiring their last step.  Apple  Corporation is one such winner that readily comes to mind.

One of the many reasons I am a member of VIA is because we have a great group of leaders who understand this concept and it is reflected in the dynamic way VIA is keeping pace with the changing economy and using technology to meet the current needs of members.

What about you?  Are you keeping pace?  What is your next step?

Bill Kennedy, Wingspan Business Consulting

www.wingspanbusiness.com

Supporting VIA

June 24, 2010 1 comment

Some of you might not expect a manufacturer to be one of the Valley Industry Association’s biggest supporters. However, during the many years of involvement in VIA, Bayless Engineering & Manufacturing and its related companies have continued to benefit in numerous ways through their VIA memberships.

VIA offers its members an excellent means to connect with the best of our local service organizations such as; advertising agencies, banks, environmental, insurance, staffing, technology, and various consulting firms. Looking at VIA’s member directory you can see a wealth of other industries showing how diversified the membership is.

Another impressive value to members is access to our colleges, the City, their services, and to the many Government Officials who continue to support the VIA membership.

The Valley Industry Association, almost 30 years in existence, is experiencing current and continued growth with newly added objectives for value to members. Bayless and group look forward to many more years of association with VIA.

Andrea McAfee

Controller

Bayless Engineering & Manufacturing

http://www.baylessengineering.com/

Executive Presentations

Came across these points from Lisa Anderson – she runs LMA Consulting Group (http://www.lma-consultinggroup.com/).  These are very applicable for high level presentations, and good points to keep the message simple:

1.    Focus on bottom line results – what else is there to say?  This is vital.

2.    Keep the presentation at the high level – it is tempting to get down into the details and methodology.  Don’t.  Once the concept is approved, focus on detailed plans.

3.    Use process visuals (graphs) – as the saying goes, “pictures are worth a thousand words”. 

4.    Focus on the pragmatic – I’m thrilled to say that pragmatic is coming back into style (as it is right up my alley).  Is it reasonable?  Attainable?  Can it be achieved within a reasonable amount of time?

5.    Present a complete picture in terms of resources, support needed, priorities etc. – keep it to the key points but it is critical to include all relevant data so that the Executives have the big picture.

Scott Capistrano, MBA, CPA 

President

Status Not Quo

Not Your Ordinary Consulting Firm

Ph 888.767.0767
Fx 661.367.5311
http://www.statusnotquo.com/ | blog.statusnotquo.com

Face to Face

May 27, 2010 2 comments

Some thoughts on connecting – According to a current poll on Linked In, 51% of those surveyed stated that the primary way they market their business is through Word of Mouth, or Referrals.  That was followed by 22% who stated Social Media, 11% who stated Traditional Media, and 15% who said Other, or who don’t market themselves. 

I think this clearly shows that, even though Social Media is a great way to brand yourself and your business, the ole tried and true method of Face to face communication and building relationships is still the best way to conduct and to build Your business.  In our case that number would be much higher than 51%.

Randy R. Moberg, CLTC                 
Chief Operating Officer                             
California Insurance License # 0E26438
Direct Phone:  661-702-6020
Direct Fax:      661-702-7420

Proud VIA member since 1994

Helpful Tips When Attending Trade Shows/Expos

May 3, 2010 1 comment

HELPFUL TIPS WHEN ATTENDING TRADE SHOWS / EXPOS

By Diana Meyer
CEO, Meyer Marketing Intelligence, Inc.
VIA Board of Directors Member

Many of us have probably attended a trade show or expo or two in the past, but how do you make the most of your time there? Well, you might be asking yourself “What should I do if I’m exhibiting?”  

Over the years, I have organized several companies’ presence at trade shows and handled training of the sales force to prepare everyone for networking and selling at a trade show. Therefore, I’d like to share with you a few tips that will serve as a refresher before B2B or any other trade show you’ll be attending. As an exhibitor, remember the following:

  1. Bring your company name badge and wear it or the exhibitors’ badge on the right side. It’s been shown that people will look at your right shoulder area when shaking hands. Make it easy for everyone to find your name.
  2. This brings me to my next point, in this day and age of people being more aware of airborne illnesses, it would be a nice touch to have some anti-bacterial gel at your booth in a place where others can get to it easily. You don’t even have to mention it. Not only will you need to use this, but your potential customers will be grateful there is some for them to use at their discretion.
  3. Repeat the other person’s name in a conversation a few times in order to remember it and show that you’re genuinely interested.
  4. If you have chairs at your booth, do not sit down. You should stand – so ladies, remember to wear comfortable shoes that you don’t mind wearing all day. This demonstrates that you’re receptive to meeting others and interested.
  5. Make sure you don’t have gum in your mouth. You don’t want to come across as a teenager.
  6. Keep your phone out of sight either on silent or turned off. You’re there to make connections and meet new people. Why have the distractions of messages or calls? If you must check for messages or texts, step away from the booth during a slow period.
  7. Collect a business card or if the show has electronic scanning of badges capabilities, make use of that service. If you’re going to write something on the back of the card, ask for their permission. In some cultures, it’s very bad manners to write on a business card. By the way, when you return to the office, follow up with each person you met and personalize that call or email. If you have a group on a social networking site, invite them to join your group.
  8. Finally, have a warm and inviting smile on your face. You can have all the latest technology at your booth or all the marketing collateral promoting the company, but if you don’t appear like you want to talk to someone new, they won’t want to stop and talk to you.

Of course, there are other sales tips, but these are just a few to serve as a reminder for you. Good luck and create your own successes as you exhibit!

VIA March Luncheon!

March 2, 2010 2 comments

PROTECTING YOU AND YOUR EMPLOYEES FROM IDENTITY THEFT
 
Tuesday, March 16, 2010 – 11:45am – 1:00pm
Valencia Country Club, 27330 N. Tourney Road in Valencia

Click here to RSVP: http://www.via.org/networking/lunch/rsvp.htm
or call 661.294.8088

Identity Theft is the fastest growing crime in America affecting millions of people every year, sometimes for the rest of their lives.

With more than 52% of Identity Theft happening in the workplace, The Federal Trade Commission is looking to business owners to better protect their employees and customers Non-Public Information (NPI), which is the purpose behind new federal laws, as well as individual state laws. It is important for business owners to know what their liabilities are, and what they are required to do to protect their business, their employees, and their customers. In order to understand the “why” behind the laws, business owners need to understand the reality of Identity Theft, how businesses are being affected by the “crime of the century”, and how a business can also become a victim.

VIA is pleased to host Lynette Madsen, President and CEO of BPG Consulting, Inc., on March 16 to provide clear understanding about Identity Theft, and how to effectively protect yourself, your clients, your business and your employees.

THIS EVENT IS BY RESERVATION ONLY!

Please RSVP NO LATER THAN Thursday, March 11 to the VIA Office (661) 294-8088
or through the VIA Website: http://www.via.org/networking/lunch/rsvp.htm

Members: $40.00
Non Members: $50.00

“No shows” or cancellations made less than 24 hours in advance will be billed.
Note: Attendees without reservations will be assessed an additional $10.00 fee for the luncheon.

Special Drawing Prizes for this event courtesy of: Premier America Credit Union, GAMEPLANZ, Proforma Graphix Unlimited, Priority One Credit Union, Signs By Tomorrow, Fast Signs, High Impact Event Resources and La Quinta Inn & Suites

Federal Reserve Bank Joins VIA!

February 15, 2010 Leave a comment

Life is very busy!  With that in mind, I hope all of you were able to observe President’s Day today to celebrate some of our country’s great leaders.   As well, I trust you also enjoyed a special Valentines Day over the weekend. 

Please be reminded that the February VIA luncheon is scheduled for tomorrow, Tuesday, February 16 , 11:45 a.m. at the Valencia Country Club.  VIA is pleased to host an excellent keynote speaker:

Robb Woldman, AAP
Western Regional ACH Sales Specialist
Senior Account Officer, Business Development
Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco

Just a few space remain available for the luncheon so I encourage you to RSVP if you have not already done so. 

Please Click here to RSVP:  admin@via.org

Lunch and the program are $40 for members.  Non-members may attend at the member price during the month of February!

I look forward to seeing you tomorrow.

Kathy

The inaugural VIA ROCKS! event did just that!

February 5, 2010 Leave a comment

VIA proudly hosted more than 75 attendees at VIA ROCKS!  last night, offering dozens of opportunities for folks to network and build new long term working relationships.  

Local companies searching for vendors and services,  VIA members and others looking to secure business to business relationships, skilled workers looking for new opportunities, and those searching for information about Santa Clarita and what the VIA organization has to offer all came out to celebrate and promote business success in 2010!  The evening also enjoyed the soft rock sounds of the band “Bad Weather.” 

A new quarterly event for the Valley Industrial Association, VIA ROCKS! is about making connections and has something to offer everyone.  Plan to join us at every VIA ROCKS! – be there to be a part of the solutions businesses need now!  

Special thank to our sponsors:  City of Santa Clarita, Custom Human Resource Solutions, LBW Insurance and Financial Services, Point of View Communications and The Courtyard by Marriott.

Kathy

www.via.org

VIA February 2010 Luncheon

February 3, 2010 Leave a comment

 

VIA February 2010 Luncheon

February 16, 2010 – 11:45am – 1:00pm
Valencia Country Club, 27330 N. Tourney Road in Valencia
RSVP to 661.294.8088 or
admin@via.org

 

VIA is pleased to host a very special speaker from THE FEDERAL RESERVE BANK:

Robb Woldman, AAP
Western Regional ACH Sales Specialist
Senior Account Officer, Business Development
Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco

Mr. Woldman previously joined VIA in March of 2006 to offer us a clear understanding of
the functions, technology, process and future of the Federal Reserve Bank.  Since that time,
much has changed!

Join us on February 16th to learn how the banking system has been impacted from 2006 to date,
to receive a 2010 payments update and information on global payments trends as we enter
a new decade, along with pertinent banking topics of interest to all businesses.

Kathy

www.via.org