Tag Archives: accountability

10 Surefire Ways to Knock Out the Undesirables on Your To-Do List

22 Mar

Check off that to-do listThe first quarter of the year is rapidly drawing to a close along with the TO-DO list items that keep getting transferred every day. Here are great answers answers to the following question I put on the HOPEpreneurs Facebook page:

“I have some things on my TO-DO list that keep getting transferred over to the next day. This is mainly because I don’t like to do them. What advice do you have for me to get them done before the end of the year?”

1. Write down each on a separate piece of paper.

Fold it  and drop it in a bowl. Randomly draw one each day. Now, you only have one thing you don’t like on your list!

Jan Harrison – Speaker/Trainer/Conference facilitator

2.  Do one at the FIRST of each day.

Reward yourself (walk, yoga, manicure, coffee) when complete. Good luck!

Gloria Miele – President of Optimal Development Coaching

3.  Do shortest one first.

Glenna Smart Castle

4.  Delegate.

Juliann Nichols

5.  Take little bites.

Momentum builds momentum…

Wayne Parnell

6. Reward yourself.

There are “to do” things that I love, which do not necessarily need to be done soon, but always get done first. I reward myself with the “love to do” things after I have accomplished a “don’t like to do” thing

Nancy Denharder

7. Determine which ones can be handed off.

Get creative and trade, hire someone to do them or whatever else you need to do.
Mariaemma Pelullo-Willis

8. Dig in and get it done now.

Focus on what’s important to you. Stop procrastinating, because time and energy are needed for your Christmas duties. Besides, think of all the fun you’ll have once these tasks are behind you.
Larry Freeman

9. Set the timer.

Set aside a specific period of time to work on a big project. Stick with it until the timer goes off. You will be amazed at how much you get done.
Karen Sebastian – Founder of HOPEpreneurs

10. Get an accountability partner.

Find someone you can trust to hold you accountable. Make a plan and stick with it. Set dates to complete tasks and get them done.

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Sharing, Learning and Growing

23 May

Close your eyes and imagine that it is three years from today. You are walking in the door of your business. What do you see and hear? What are people doing? What does your business look like?

The women sitting in front of me are business owners  from various countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. It is an eclectic group with a variety of business ventures ranging from textiles and chocolates to biotech benefiting the salmon industry.

Participants from Latin America - Listening to Your Business - FastTrac

They are here as part of the Women’s Entrepreneurship in the Americas (“WEAmericas”), an initiative that leverages public-private partnerships to increase women’s economic participation and addresses key barriers women face when starting and growing small and medium enterprises.

My role is to facilitate  Kauffman FastTrac’s Listening to Your Business  – a three-year visioning workshop. A hush settles over the lively group as they open their eyes and start writing what they envision in the near future. Time flies as we talk about the importance of establishing an intentional internal planning process through setting special goals and establishing success strategies. They begin to share resources to reach their business goals.

Sharing Challenges

During the workshop, each woman introduced herself and shared her biggest challenges. They roughly fell into the following four buckets: 1) Growth; 2) Marketing; 3 )Finances and 4) Transitions. The visioning exercise helped them to focus more clearly on the steps to move past the barriers to see the desired success. Michele Markey, Vice President of FastTrac says, “This type of activity is often hard for entrepreneurs because they end up spending most of their time with their heads down to get the business started and keep it going.”

Learning

The biggest “AHA” moment was the need to take the time to find strategic solutions to the different challenges presenting themselves in each stage of the growth of their business.  As they created a chart of their goals, management style, planning characteristics and red flags they were able to pinpoint specific ways to move ahead. For some, it was realizing that they needed to delegate more in order to step back from the day-to-day operations to gain the perspective in a larger context.

Growing

My life was enriched by this opportunity to meet these talented women and to help them advance their entrepreneurial aspirations. Their action plans and future strategic focus will have a positive impact on their own business endeavors and on the economy of their nations. Many spoke of returning to encourage other women to become entrepreneurs. By sharing what they learned, they will network more effectively and grow as they give to back to others.

What challenges do you face as an entrepreneur? What are you learning? In what areas do you need to grow?

Karen Sebastian is a serial entrepreneur who wants to help you succeed in your business. Subscribe to this blog for more inspiration on how to become a HOPEpreneur. Please email her at hopepreneurs@gmail.com if you would like to book her as a speaker or want one-on-one coaching.

10 Tips for Embracing Change

9 Apr

How are you adjusting to the mandatory timeline on your Facebook page? I found it interesting to see the various ways that people handled it. There were two distinct extremes – those who jumped right in and those who resisted until the very end. Most of us fell somewhere in the middle. Let’s face it, we get in our comfort zone and like for things to stay the same. Here are 10 tips for embracing change (of any kind) since it’s clear that changes will continue to accelerate in the future especially in the technical arena.

Look for possibilities

1. Stay open

How do you respond when you facing change? Do you retreat and close yourself off or do you stay open and ready to move forward.

2.  Research reasons for change

This can be a tough one because often we are not given the reasons for a change. When possible, ask the question. When leading through change keep in mind that research shows that letting others know the “because” of why something is happening increases their cooperation from 60 – 94 percent. (Ellen Langer)

3. Resist complaining about the negatives

Now this is really a tough one. We are always looking for ways to connect. With how many strangers have you talked about the awful weather? Avoid connecting on the negative implications of the change because that starts a pessimistic, hopeless way of thinking.

4. Explore benefits of change

Open your mind to the possibilities that may be hiding behind the inconvenience of change. If nothing else, you are remaining flexible as you find out more details about the change.

5. Find workarounds for the negatives

Creativity flows from solving problems. Take a step back and look at the negatives. See if others have come up with a workaround and if there isn’t, figure one out.

6. Share the benefits with others

Begin to share the benefits of the change. Be known for your positive approach to changes and not the outspoken critic of anything new.

7. Make the change before you have to

Stop procrastinating and dreading the change. Go ahead with it. It’s never as bad as you think it will be.

8. Show someone else how to do it

Once you’ve made the change, look around to see if there is someone who was where you were just a few days ago. Encourage them to make the change or, better yet, show them how easy it is to do.

9.  Adjust to the new ‘normal’

In the first few days, the change will seem unfamiliar and awkward. Resist the urge to complain. It won’t take you long to get used to it.

10.  Look for business opportunities

There are hidden opportunities that those who are resistant to change will ignore. What changes are happening in your industry or world? If  you follow these steps you will quickly become an expert and authority. It’s not that hard, yet you will need to get out of your comfort zone. That’s what successful entrepreneurs do well.

What changes are you going to embrace this week?

Karen Sebastian is a serial entrepreneur who wants to help you succeed in your business. Please email her at hopepreneurs@gmail.com if you would like to book her as a speaker or want one-on-one coaching. Subscribe to this blog for more inspiration on how to become a HOPEpreneur.

10 Tips to Overcoming Procrastination

1 Apr

This is the first year – EVER – that I am not dreading April. Usually when we hit April 1st, I am less concerned about pranks and more disturbed by the fact that in 15 days I will be turning in my taxes. This year I finished them on March 15th (Number 1 on the 10 Tips to Overcoming Procrastination list). It worked for me. It looks like there is hope for me yet.

Most of us procrastinate in one or more areas of our lives. There are those who are right on top of all their business related activities but fall behind on the personal. Others, procrastinate on certain aspects of their work that they do not enjoy – such as the detailed part such as accounting or taxes.

Here are ten ways to overcome procrastination

10. Write down a list of all the projects you have put off.

9.    Prioritize them by date you need to have them completed.

8.    Decide what needs to be done first and DO it!

7.   Divide a big project into manageable parts and tackle one a day.

6.   Get a timer and set it for 15 minutes. Focus on that one part without allowing yourself to get distracted.

5.   Get someone to help you get started.

4.   Find an accountability partner and report your progress.

3.   Make a game out of it and have fun!

2.   Celebrate progress and keep going.

1.   Set a fake deadline before the real one.

I set a fake deadline for my taxes and have enjoyed a sense of smug accomplishment for the last two weeks. Good luck with your deadlines and remember, be kind to yourself!

What tips can you add? What are your secrets to avoid procrastination?

Karen Sebastian is a serial entrepreneur who wants to help you succeed in your business. Please email her at hopepreneurs@gmail.com if you would like to book her as a speaker or want one-on-one coaching. Subscribe to this blog for more inspiration on how to become a HOPEpreneur.

Seven Creative Ways to Stay Motivated

9 Jan

Discover your passion and you will always be motivated - quote from Karen Sebastian of HOPEpreneurs.What’s your motivation quotient? Was it a great week full of accomplishments or were you struggling to get through the days? Did you take on too much as you started the new year?

For the sake of this topic, I would like to give the HOPEpreneur definition of the word motivation: the internal drive to carry out what is important to us. It is closely aligned to what motivates us and what we are passionate about. It is personal and will grow when shared with others who share our passion.

Here are seven creative ways to keep the motivational flame burning brightly to do keep moving forward toward success (For sake of a practical example, I will be talking about find the motivation to write the HOPEpreneur blog that you are reading):

1. Tap into your true motivation.

When we align our goals with what truly motivates us, we will find the stamina to follow through with them. For example, my passion is to make a difference in the lives of women entrepreneurs. As a result, I have found increased my motivation to write this blog as I hear back from readers who find it helpful. What motivates you?

2. Celebrate every step in the right direction.

Set small goals that keep you moving forward. I set a goal of ten blogs and you are reading the eleventh one.  Now I am going to write some blogs to have ready to go for when my travel schedule picks up next year. What’s a small goal you can set that you will celebrate when you accomplish it?

3. Accept setbacks as reality check points.

Initially, I set my goal to write three blogs a week to get me established and build up my mailing list. I still want to do that but am happy when I can get two blogs out there. If I re-frame the setback, I see that this is not a failure but rather a reality check depending on my schedule. What milestones have you set in place to mark your progress?

4. Acquire an accountability partner.

Find someone who will check back with you to see if you completed what you set out to do. This is the reason that organizations like Weight Watchers are so successful. Pick someone you trust and who will urge you to keep going if you get derailed. Who will you ask to celebrate your next accomplishment with you?

5. Get moving.

Literally, get up and walk around when ready to stop. Avoid the temptation to go online because you can burn up time very quickly in that venue. Set your timer and go for a walk around the block. Put some music on and dance to your favorite tune. Moving releases endorphins which help the creative process. What’s your plan when you want to stop? Where are you going to walk?

6. Believe you can.

This sounds like such a ‘no brainer’ doesn’t it? When it comes to our stretch goals, most of us talk ourselves out of what we want to accomplish long before we give it a chance to succeed. I meet people every day who tell me that they are terrible writers. Start small and persist. Follow through and improve your writing every day. The best way to do that is to write. What do you tell others about that stretch goal you’ve set for this year?

7. Have fun.

Read the comics or watch a funny movie. Go spend time with friends that share your sense of humor. The more you laugh, the more creative you will be. What helps you laugh? I, for one, have learned to laugh at myself and find many opportunities every day to laugh.

Karen Sebastian is a serial entrepreneur who wants to help you succeed in your business. Subscribe to this blog for more inspiration on how to become a HOPEpreneur.

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