Monday, March 11, 2019

Five Rules For Networking Your Startup In A New City


As an expat Canadian (New York City has been home for over 20 years), a question I am frequently asked by foreign startups seeking funding or new customers is “how do I network in the United States?” Oh, if only it was so easy to give a single piece of networking advice for that 50 state question. Here’s why: when it comes to networking, it is as much about location as the people you desire to meet . One set of networking rules does not fit all geographic locations. To be successful at building networks in new cities, you need to understand how the locals interact – as it will improve the likelihood you’ll make the right connections and enhance the interactions you make.

“In Austin, breakfast tacos and craft coffee rule for a first meeting - and don't be too formal as Austin is a super casual city ” – Julia Cheek, founder of digital health platform EverlyWell

Know Before You Go

Do your research on the investors or companies you want to meet, and the city you’ll be meeting them in, well before you book a flight or send a “here’s my pitch deck can we meet over coffee” email. You’ve undoubtedly heard the advice countless times before - and it’s guidance worth adhering to, as it will save you endless wasted hours and dollars in the long run. Google meetups in the city where you’re headed. Sign up for hyper-local event newsletters. Crowd source suggestions through Twitter. Whatever your source of information, study and take a keen interest in how the local entrepreneur community interacts – then mirror their behavior.

“Some of the networks do not mix with other networks. It is important to know which are the most relevant networks for your specific startups and in some cases, you might want to participate in completely different events so that you build connections in several networks.” - Itxaso del Palacio. Investment Director at London-based Notion Capital.

Learn The Unwritten Rules

Nashville's business community prides itself on accessibility and a willingness to meet regardless of seniority , Mucker Capital’s Monique Villa tells me. People who want to be connected within the Toronto startup ecosystem should look to add value , according to Janet Bannister, partner at Real Ventures. As a Canadian I can confirm that we are a friendly, sincere and helpful nation and it is not surprising that the Toronto tech ecosystem reflects these values. The point here is that every city operates a little bit differently and the more you understand those nuances, the more successful your network-building will be. Ask the investors or advisors you already have if they’ve done business in the city you’re headed to – then pepper them with questions about their overall experience (rather than immediately leaping into an ask for introductions).

“People will go out of their way to be helpful and, generally speaking, entrepreneurs, investors and others in the community genuinely care about each other and want others to be successful as they believe that a "rising tide lifts all boats" and the more success stories we have in Toronto, the more likely it is that other successes will follow.” - Janet Bannister, partner at Real Ventures

Skip The Sales Pitch
Your goal is to make long-term connections, not simply to close a funding round or land a business deal. Entrepreneurship is a precarious, challenging and uncertain pursuit. When resources (such as time, money and introductions) are scarce, the default is to invest those scarce resources in those with shared values and a demonstrated commitment to the community. If you’re not prepared to invest in the targeted ecosystem, why should they invest in you?


“Everyone knows everyone, literally. In such a close-knit ecosystem like Singapore, all parties play in the same pool - government, corporate innovation teams, startups, accelerators, VCs, angels... One particular thing that people like talking about (think Crazy Rich Asians) is their family ties and the rich families they know.” – Pocket Sun, Managing Partner, SoGal Ventures

Warm Introductions Work Best
The foundation of strong introduction is trust – and trust does not arise from a perfectly crafted pitch deck[/tweet_quote] or complimentary email or hunting down an investor via a conference app. Avoid conferences is the advice of Singapore-based Anne Marie Droste, partner at Entrepreneur First. Droste, as with many venture capitalists seeks introductions that come from her network, preferably from another startup. “CEO to CEO [introductions] are always best for intros” in her mind. While avoiding conferences may sound harsh, I would suggest avoiding conferences if your only goal is to secure investment. If you’re attending to learn more about the dynamics of a startup ecosystem or further develop relationships you’ve made previously, then by all means, attend those conferences!


“Whatsapp is where it’s at - no one emails. Business cards are less necessary than people like to think - just when you talk to corporations.’ – Anne Marie Droste, partner, Entrepreneur First (Singapore)




Understand Communication Preferences
To build a strong network you need to recognize the communication preferences of the other person . Are they a “meet for coffee person” or a 15-minute phone call type? The same is true when it comes to technology. The good news is that many investors share their communication preferences from interviews, podcasts, blogs and tweets. You should be able to discern the best way to engage. Be prepared to adopt their preferred communication tool(s) when necessary. “ WeChat is the predominate messaging app in China and it's the most important tool for networking and getting things done” Tina Cheng, Managing Partner at Cherubic Ventures tells me, adding that the custom in China is to add business contacts on WeChat by scanning a QR code. Figure out before you reach out whether you need to get a QR code, download a new app or jump on a video chat platform, and avoid looking like yet another startup founder who doesn’t know the local networking rules.


"The Warsaw start-up scene and investor community love networking. the language of communication is English. It is easy to get a meeting with any investor out there, people are very open. Just send an email ." - Kinga Stanislawska, founder and managing partner, Experior Venture Fund





Source: https://www.forbes.com
Image Credit:  Getty | Getty Images


ABOUT WNFP
Westchester Networking for Professionals (WNFP) is a business organization focused on providing our members and guests with an extraordinary networking experience, bringing business professionals together for the sole purpose of generating new relationships and developing new business opportunities. Not a member, learn how you can become a member and join this awesome group of professionals to connect and grow your business.

Stay Connected with WNFP!
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Friday, March 8, 2019

How To Improve Business Relationships – 5 Easy Tips


How would you like to learn some easy tips about how to improve business relationships? Let me start with a story. Over the past six months, I’ve been really exploring how to prospect for new clients. One of the things I started doing in 2018 is create courses around LinkedIn. I went down that road myself. I bought Sales Navigator at $80 a month. I tried like crazy to use that to get new business. And I failed.

Then I started teaching courses on how to set up LinkedIn better, and I had a few people take it and they loved it. But it never caught on. One of the things I learned is that people are basically LinkedIn-2averse. And there’s a reason for that.




First and foremost, there’s not a lot to do on there. You can read articles and that’s pretty much it. You know some people obviously on Facebook are playing games or joining groups or whatever it is. But the level of conversation on there is way lower. And the other thing that happens is something that I call connect and pitch. What happens with connect and pitch is somebody connects with you and then immediately, right after they connect, they sell you something. I just got one today for somebody who says, hey I’ve got business funding for you. A couple of weeks ago I got one from a guy who is recruiting for his MLM. I could go on and on, but let’s get to the bottom line.

Sometimes you get these messages in your inbox saying, “Hey, you’ve got a new connection request on LinkedIn.” When you check it out, before you can even exit the program, the person is already pitching you what they want to sell you.

If you’re one of those people that get a lot of that kind of contact, chances are you’re not gonna be real anxious to log in and try that same thing yourself. Why? Because it doesn’t work.


One Simple Email




Let me tell you something that I did. I’ve been working with a program called Nimble. It’s a CRM. Now you probably know the term CRM, Customer Relationship Manager. You probably have a CRM. You may have something as basic as your address book, or something really intense like Sales Force, HubSpot or Infusionsoft, or something along that lines. There are tons of them. But the biggest problem with CRMs is that they’re a lot like LinkedIn. Everybody’s got ’em, but not many people use ’em. Why? Because they’re not 100% sure what to with them, and often they just don’t work.

But I figured out a little bit of a secret, and that’s what I’m gonna talk about today. So the secret is this: At the end of the year, I went through my CRM in Nimble and basically pulled in everybody I did business with last year who I’d built a website for. I don’t do a lot of them, but I had a handful. I put them into a list. And I tagged them. Then I created an email and said, “Hey, I know you haven’t heard from me in a while, but there are a lot of changes in WordPress. There is WordPress 5.0 and Google Recaptcha 3.0, and they are causing havoc with a lot of websites. They’re causing a lot of people to get a ton of spam. On top of that, some sites are crashing because the plugins or the server are too old, or whatever.”



So I said, “Hey, if you’re having any of these problems, I’ve got a special for you. I will monitor your site and fix any of those problems for a fee. If you’re interested, just email me back or call me or click this button.” The next morning I got up, and all of the sudden I saw that I had a whole bunch of money in my PayPal account because people didn’t even bother calling. They just went and said, “Okay I’m ready.” So just by reconnecting with past clients, using that CRM and tagging them and sending them a targeted email, I was able to increase my sales before the end of the year.

Just Log In


Have you ever heard the term GIGO? It stands for garbage in, garbage out. One of the things I want you to do, and this is the first tip, is have a commitment. The commitment is to log in every day and do something. So here’s the first step, alright? Take a look at either old data or new data. Old data could be something from your QuickBooks or something that you already have in there. Verify that some of the people that you are working with are still at the same company and still have the same phone number. You can look them up on LinkedIn, you can check your email, whatever it is.

Maybe you want to add some new people. So let’s say maybe your concept is you add five new people and you update five old people. Or maybe you just update ten of your current contacts, whatever it is. So number one, log in daily.

Do Something Daily


The second thing is to do something daily. In other words, get in there and actively update just ten records. That’s all you need to do. In ten days, in two weeks you have 100 records done. And it shouldn’t take that long, maybe five, ten, fifteen minutes, worse case scenario. We’ll talk in the future about what to do with them and some ideas on how to maximize it, but the bottom line is you’ve got to start from a baseline of good data. Garbage, in, garbage out, so get rid of the garbage.

Verify Your Data


The third tip is to verify the old ones. Just go in and look whatever data you can find. You can just get on the phone and say “Hi, it’s Brian. I just wanted to double check a couple quick things. I don’t want to bug ya. Number one, you’re still at the company B, your email address is still this, and the address is this, you haven’t moved.” Just get as much good data on people as you can. So in that 10 or 15 minutes, maybe you make one or two phone calls, just to connect that or send an email, whatever it takes.

Tag… You’re It



Tip number four, and this is one of the most important ones you have to do, is to organize that data. As you start working with your old data, make sure that you’re tagging them or categorizing them or whatever it is that your CRM allows you to do. In the case of the clients that I put in that I was able to sell something to, I went in and put in WordPress clients. Now, I have a whole bunch of other clients that I’ve done WordPress work for, but they’re also tagged as people that are already buying my monitoring services. So I was able to go in and segment the audience saying I want to look at everybody I’ve done WordPress for, but who are not using me for WordPress monitoring services. That’s how was able to segment and send those people an individual email. That’s one of the cool things about Nimble; I can do a group email but it looks like an individual email coming from just my inbox as if I was using my desktop machine. So it made it super simple to communicate once I started organizing them.

Start out with the basics. How about: old clients, new clients, maybe even past clients, people that you haven’t talked to in more than a year. Maybe it’s prospects. Those are four categories you can easily add. Then maybe start adding in the types of product or services that you have for those people. Then you can start to build a database of good, useful information that you can segment targeted information to.

Clean Up Old Data

The final tip I want to give you is just do a data cleanup. That is, if you have multiple records for the same person, try to merge them. Programs like Nimble will let you find duplicate data and select both of them and merge them together into one.

Final Thoughts


Let me leave you with some final thoughts. First and foremost, get acting. Get some work done. Spend five to ten minutes a day getting your data cleaned up or added. Secondly, have a plan. Think about old clients, new clients, prospects. Think about what can you do to communicate with them, and we will cover that in more detail in future podcast episodes and blog posts. Log in every day, make a commitment to do something and start to build a plan on how you can better communicate to build better relationships to grow your business in the coming year.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this. Comment below and share your thoughts, ideas or questions about showing the concepts presented. Have you had to overcome any of the presented concepts? What worked and what did not live up to expectations? Do you have any ideas or advice you could share?







Source: https://www.business2community.com
Image Credit: metamorworks - stock.adobe.com


ABOUT WNFP
Westchester Networking for Professionals (WNFP) is a business organization focused on providing our members and guests with an extraordinary networking experience, bringing business professionals together for the sole purpose of generating new relationships and developing new business opportunities. Not a member, learn how you can become a member and join this awesome group of professionals to connect and grow your business.

Stay Connected with WNFP!
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Thursday, March 7, 2019

Entrepreneur's Guide to Building Better Media Relationships



When you embark on your entrepreneurial journey, your first goal probably involves spreading brand awareness and recruiting customers. Many business owners reach out to the media for publicity, eager to share their story and promote their business.

To achieve this, however, you must approach the situation properly. Building positive media relationships is possibly the most important task of entrepreneurship, and failing to do so can be detrimental to your company. Here’s how to do it – the right way.


1. Do your research.

Before you pitch a journalist, you'll want to understand who they are and what they cover. Going in blind will show that you're only in it for yourself, rather than searching for a mutually beneficial arrangement.

"To make a good impression, it's essential to research and understand a reporter's beat before sending them a pitch," said George Bradley, PR manager at Circa Interactive. "By taking an in-depth look at the stories they've covered and the articles they've written recently, you'll be able to get a thorough understanding of the stories they're most interested in and will therefore have a much better chance of pitching them something they'll be receptive to."

Also, keep in mind that every journalist is different. Some like to be pitched via email, while others favor phone calls. Rather than assuming, ask for their preferred method of communication off the bat and stick with it, said Vicki LaBrosse, director of global public relations at Edge Legal Marketing.




2. Keep track of contacts.

Once you start communicating with contacts on a more regular basis, create a list or spreadsheet to keep track of each person. Include information like their email, beat, previous collaboration, the last time you pitched them and any other details you deem necessary.

"Keeping a list of media contacts that you have developed a professional rapport with can be a great way to maintain relationships and land easy PR wins in the future," said Bradley. "It's important to send these contacts personalized pitches and reference any previous work that you've done with them. This will help to show your appreciation for the media placements they have helped to facilitate and ensure that they remember who you are."

Also, he added, pitch these contacts often enough that they keep you in mind, but not so often that they roll their eyes every time they see an email from you. You can refer to your list to determine a schedule that works best for both sides.

3. Respect their time.

Journalists are busy people with perpetually full inboxes. Their time, just like yours, is valuable, and you should treat it as such.

"When working with the media, speed of response is critical to success," said Bradley. "You cannot sit on a journalist's response for a couple of days, or even a few hours in some cases, without potentially losing the opportunity completely ... Not responding quickly is a surefire way to damage a relationship with reporters and editors. You will only have one opportunity to get it right, so clear communication with everyone involved is vital."

If you can't form an elaborate response to their email or request right away, Bradley recommended letting them know that you're working on it so they don't seek out someone else instead.

On the flip side, make sure you're patient with them as well. LaBrosse advised giving your contacts space in between pitches and messages.

"Follow-up is fair, but too many reminders may be considered annoying or even spam," she said. "If you don't get a response, do not be afraid to rework the pitch – it is all part of the process. In the end, if the relationship is nurtured and respected, the reward will come."




Source: https://www.businessnewsdaily.com
Image Credit: Pressmaster | Shutterstock




ABOUT WNFP
Westchester Networking for Professionals (WNFP) is a business organization focused on providing our members and guests with an extraordinary networking experience, bringing business professionals together for the sole purpose of generating new relationships and developing new business opportunities. Not a member, learn how you can become a member and join this awesome group of professionals to connect and grow your business.

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Wednesday, March 6, 2019

10 Ways to Evolve Your Marketing Strategy as Your Business Grows



Your marketing plan shouldn’t stay stagnant for years and years. You need to adapt to new trends, learn from mistakes and take advantage of new technology tools and platforms if you want to be successful over a long period of time. To learn more about evolving your marketing strategy, here are some recent tips and insights from members of the online small business community.

Avoid These Marketing Mistakes

You’ll inevitably make plenty of mistakes while marketing your small business. But it is possible for you to avoid some of them, if you learn from others who have been there before. In this post, Neil Patel shares some of the marketing mistakes that have cost him through the years, so you can learn valuable lessons.
Consider Opportunities for AI in Content Marketing

AI is making an impact on many different parts of the business world. Content marketing is certainly one of those areas. So if you create content for your business, consider the opportunities included in this Content Marketing Institute post by Dennis Shiao.
Get Ready for These Marketing Changes in 2019

The marketing landscape is constantly evolving for small businesses. If you want to keep up, you need to be aware of the trends that are impacting your industry and the platforms that are available to reach customers most effectively. Learn more about the landscape for 2019 in this Target Marketing post and video from Thorin McGee.

Measure Your Social Media Performance

To evolve your social media strategy, you need to determine what parts of your current strategy are working and what parts may be wasting time. In this post, Rebekah Radice offers tips for measuring your business’s performance on social media. And BizSugar members commented on the post here.
Take Advantage of Ecommerce Success with Instagram Stories

Instagram has been adding features to its Stories platform aimed at helping ecommerce companies easily connect potential customers with their products. If you have an ecommerce business, be sure to learn about these features in this Marketing Land post by Jon Kroopf.




Use These Content Marketing Tools to Gain Insights, Inspiration and Amplification

To make your content marketing efforts really take shape, you need insights on how your current content is performing, inspiration for new content and ways to amplify that new content. For tools that can help you accomplish all of those goals, see this TopRank Marketing post by Caitlin Burgess.
Urge Landing Page Visitors to Buy with a Countdown Timer

To encourage people to complete a purchase right away, it helps to create a sense of urgency. There’s no better way to do that than with an actual timer, counting down until the particular deal they’re interested in will no longer be available. Learn more in this GetResponse post by Sezgin Hergul.
Build Traffic with Pinterest

If you’re not already using Pinterest to drive traffic to your blog or website, you’re missing out on a very unique and powerful tool. It can be intimidating to learn new techniques and platform. But in this MyblogU post, Ann Smarty details exactly how you can use Pinterest to build traffic for your business websites.

Find Out If Your SEO Strategy Is Actually Working for Your Brand

There is no perfect SEO strategy that’s right for every business. Sometimes, you need to try new things and wait to see the results. In this Right Mix Marketing post, Renu Sharma explains how you can determine whether or not your current strategy is really working for your business, so you can make changes if necessary.
Change Up Your Social Media Strategy

Social media is constantly changing. So if you’re not changing along with it, your business will be left behind. In this Strella Social Media post, Rachel Strella predicts that 2019 will be a year of big change in the social media world and explains what that means for businesses. See what BizSugar users are saying about the post here.





Source: https://smallbiztrends.com
Image Credit: Shutterstock




ABOUT WNFP
Westchester Networking for Professionals (WNFP) is a business organization focused on providing our members and guests with an extraordinary networking experience, bringing business professionals together for the sole purpose of generating new relationships and developing new business opportunities. Not a member, learn how you can become a member and join this awesome group of professionals to connect and grow your business.

Stay Connected with WNFP!
Join WNFP Communities!

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Top Business Trends That Will Keep Rising In 2019


Spotting the business trends can be difficult for leaders and unfortunately, not all predictions may come true. However, some of these trends are so obvious that ignoring them would be same as signing your death warrant as a company. Below you can find some of the most obvious trends of 2019.


    -  Personalization: In the past, mass production and mass marketing was popular. Companies were making mass production and with mass marketing, they were making the product popular so everybody was buying it. A few years ago, with the rise of social media and big data, this trend has started to change. People wanted to feel special and therefore, personalization concept has come into our lives. Companies which personalize marketing and produce products that can be personalized will continue to grow. Unfortunately, companies which cannot adapt to this trend will eventually die.

   -  Remote Employees: With the rise of millennials among the workforce, remote working became the new norm especially for tech companies. If you want to hire the best employees and retain them in your company, as an employer, you should let them work remotely at least two days a week. This will give them the flexibility they need and enable them to be more creative since they are getting out of their daily routines by working somewhere else than office.


    -  Crowdfunding: Crowdfunding will continue to rise not just as a tool to raise capital but also for validating new product ideas. Smart companies use crowdfunding platforms to engage with customers and learn from them early on. The best way to validate a new product is to ask your customers. Using these platforms, you can engage with your customers and as a result, you can reduce your risk, save money and accelerate new product’s time to market.


    -  Green Products: Consumers started to become more aware of the planet and the damage they cause. For this reason, they tend to use green and eco-friendly products. They also care about being socially responsible and prefer to purchase from companies which not only want to earn revenues but also have a social mission and help the planet. If companies cannot go greener, then, they may face losing some of their customers.






Source: https://www.business2community.com
Image Credit: Getty Images





ABOUT WNFP
Westchester Networking for Professionals (WNFP) is a business organization focused on providing our members and guests with an extraordinary networking experience, bringing business professionals together for the sole purpose of generating new relationships and developing new business opportunities. Not a member, learn how you can become a member and join this awesome group of professionals to connect and grow your business.

Stay Connected with WNFP!
Join WNFP Communities!

Friday, March 1, 2019

5 Easy Steps to Start a Freelance Business


You’re probably aware that you have to spend money to make money. The good thing about a freelance business is you can start with a pretty bare business budget and still see results. You can build a solid foundation without spending hundreds or thousands of dollars on bells and whistles. Here are important (and relatively affordable) business tools to invest in first that won’t break the bank:

What You Need for Your Freelance Startup

Get a System to Collect Money

By definition, freelancing is working for many different bosses instead of being employed by one boss. Collecting one check from an employer is as simple as pie. Invoicing and tracking many payments can get pretty challenging. Invest in a system that will make this process easier for you and the customer. Due offers invoicing and ways to collect payment online that are affordable.


Start an Email List
An email list is key because it’s where you’ll keep in touch with your people. Typically, email services charge by the number of people on your list. A small email list won’t cost too much to manage in the beginning. MailChimp is the email service I used at first. It’s currently free up to 2,000 subscribers and 12,000 emails sent per month. The next plan up starts at $10 per month. MailChimp has a cool feature where you can estimate the cost of your email list as it grows here.

Sign Up for a Project Management System
Freelancers juggle many projects at the same time. A project management system is one way to stay organized so you can meet all of your deadlines. The good news here is that many project management systems are completely free to use unless you get premium features. Asana and Trello are both systems that I’ve used in the past to manage different projects. Having a system in place to manage your projects will be a lifesaver when it’s time to outsource.

Invest in the Right Marketing
Putting money into marketing can be a tricky business because you can easily go down the rabbit hole. There are many marketing strategies and social media platforms where you could invest your money and time.

If you don’t have much money to invest right now, the foundational elements are your website and social media pages on platforms most used by your audience. Your website and social profiles are like online business cards.

I’ve used WordPress for most of my websites. I’m a non-techy person who taught myself how to build sites with WordPress from scratch. There are a plethora of YouTube videos on how to start a WordPress site. Wix and Squarespace are other “drag and drop” website builders that may be easier to set up.

Invest in Teachings that Won’t Break the Bank
No need to drop a lot of money on a business coach right away. Instead, focus on looking for clients and doing the work. Much of the information you need to learn about business comes from running your own business. If there’s an aspect of business you need to learn from a pro, try books first or affordable courses and then move on to the more costly options when you really need it.

Final Word
Starting a business doesn’t have to be expensive. Build the foundation and then invest back into your business as the money starts coming in.







Source: https://smallbiztrends.com
Image Credit: Due.com




ABOUT WNFP
Westchester Networking for Professionals (WNFP) is a business organization focused on providing our members and guests with an extraordinary networking experience, bringing business professionals together for the sole purpose of generating new relationships and developing new business opportunities. Not a member, learn how you can become a member and join this awesome group of professionals to connect and grow your business.

Stay Connected with WNFP!
Join WNFP Communities!

Thursday, February 28, 2019

5 Online Business Tools to Better Understand in 2019


Operating with the right online business tools can eliminate a ton of stress for you as you manage your workload each day. Whether the tools is paid or free often doesn’t matter.

It’s all about how well you can use the tool and how it helps improve your processes. Often times, the affordable or free online business tools can do the trick and exceed your expectations.

Here are 5 online business tools to better understand in 2019.


1. Google Analytics

If you have a website, you should definitely be using Google Analytics to track your page views and learn more about your audience. Google Analytics can be used to completely analyze this critical data.

Aside from tracking page views, you can determine where visitors are coming from (referral sites and traffic), where they live, how long they stay on the site, etc. If you haven’t yet, do a full run through of all the features Google Analytics offers so you can make the most of this free tool.

2. Asana

Asana is another one of the top online business tools to master in 2019. It’s a project management system that has a free and paid version. I use Asana to assign tasks to myself and my team to help us keep up with deadlines and organize everything in one place.

Still, you can take Asana to the next level by using some of their advanced features like creating specific projects and recurring tasks. Use their tutorial and virtual tour to run through all the features.




3. Calendar

Having trouble organizing your schedule and planning meetings? If you don’t have an online calendar system, it’s time to consider one. Human error can pose many setbacks when you’re trying to be productive in your business.

Calendar is an online tool that utilizes the power of machine learning to offer you smart suggestions on when, where, and how your meetings can take place.

This is a great tool if you often get overwhelmed with the idea of scheduling and attending meetings while balancing work or if you often overbook yourself. Using Calendar will help you easily scheduling meetings and events when it’s most convenient for you.

4. Moz SEO

If you’re looking to improve your SEO in 2019, Moz is a must. It’s an SEO software program with free and paid versions.

With the free version, you can research keywords and research SEO data for your competition. There on limits to how many sites you can pull data on for the free version, but it can still be super helpful. Moz has a 30-day free trial so you can use all the premium features of the tool at no cost.

5. Due

Payment processing software is another online tool you’ll want to better understand. If you’re running a business, that means you’re collecting payments somehow whether it’s billing clients or accepting funds directly for goods.


Summary

Having the right online business tools is important, but knowing how to best use them can make or break your business. Whether you’re paying for a tool or using it for free, take the time to make sure you fully understand all the features and how it works.

This way, you can increase efficiency and get more bang for your buck.



Source: https://www.business2community.com






ABOUT WNFP
Westchester Networking for Professionals (WNFP) is a business organization focused on providing our members and guests with an extraordinary networking experience, bringing business professionals together for the sole purpose of generating new relationships and developing new business opportunities. Not a member, learn how you can become a member and join this awesome group of professionals to connect and grow your business.

Stay Connected with WNFP!
Join WNFP Communities!

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Overcoming Self-Doubt and Building a Successful Business


As a new entrepreneur, when you consider highly-successful business icons like Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg, you might be tempted to think these guys never have any doubts about the business choices they make.

But guess what… they do! Everyone – even the poster boys and girls of the business world – has fears and doubts every now and then. However, what sets them apart is faith in their ideas and their willingness to take risks.

Making a habit of self-doubt is one of the surest ways to ensure failure as an entrepreneur because if you don’t believe in yourself (and your business idea), you won’t last long in the startup world. So, here are a few tips that’ll help you crush that habit of self-doubt and set you on the path to success.

Focus on Yourself… Not Others
Regardless of the industry in which you’re operating, one thing is certain – there will be people who are more successful than you. But listen – don’t compare yourself to them! While it’s okay to learn from others’ mistakes and try to apply what has worked for them, it’s never a good idea to make other people or businesses your benchmark.

Instead, you need to understand that you’re a unique individual with a unique idea. That means you need to go at your own unique pace, without feeling pressured by the accomplishments of others. Make custom plans that are well-suited for your own business and believe in your ideas. In due time, you’ll be dining with the kings in your industry.

Set Immediate Goals
While ambitious long-term goals are great, they soon become a fountain of frustration and doubt when they’re not immediately achieved. That’s why you need to prioritize short-term goals that can be more easily attained.

You need to make a habit of breaking down your long-term goals into sizable milestones that are simple and measurable. For instance, if you want a 100% increase in sales by next year, then aim at increasing sales by 8-9% on a monthly basis. By celebrating the small wins on a regular basis, you’ll be able to stay motivated for success and self-doubt will lose its grip on you.

Move with the Right People
No man is an island, says the old maxim. Isolating yourself and trying to go it alone makes it easier to drown in the river of doubt and self-pity when things don’t quite turn out as you expected.

So, listen up –if you want to make it as an entrepreneur, you need to surround yourself with the right people. Having positive, optimistic people around you is one of the surest ways to keep your motivation level consistently high. The opposite is true if you flock with pessimists. So, whatever you do, stay away from negative people, even if they’re friends or family members.





Learn from Mistakes… Don’t Obsess Over Them
Everyone makes mistakes…period. So, there’s absolutely no justification for beating yourself up unnecessarily when you fail to achieve a set goal. Nursing the idea that you failed because you weren’t good enough is a harbinger of self-doubt and the inevitable disaster that follows it.

So, what do you do? Simple… reflect on past failures and take notes. Find out what you did wrong and determine never to make the same mistakes in the future. Within every failure is an opportunity to succeed. So, make your failures a source of motivation rather than discouragement. And remember this… “the past is a reference, not a residence.”

Face Your Fears
Okay, listen – people who are afraid of failure never make progress. Fear keeps you down and makes you miss precious opportunities. That’s why fear must not control you… you must control it!

Before taking any business decision, take time to analyze the risk-reward ratio and visualize the worst case scenario. Then you need to prepare a plan B for ameliorating the worst-case scenario, should it come to pass. This makes you adequately prepared to deal with the consequences of your decision whether or not it works out.

Either way, you would have succeeded in overcoming your fears and self-doubt… a feat that must be achieved by all successful entrepreneurs.






Source: https://www.business2community.com
Image Credit: Getty Images





ABOUT WNFP
Westchester Networking for Professionals (WNFP) is a business organization focused on providing our members and guests with an extraordinary networking experience, bringing business professionals together for the sole purpose of generating new relationships and developing new business opportunities. Not a member, learn how you can become a member and join this awesome group of professionals to connect and grow your business.

Stay Connected with WNFP!
Join WNFP Communities!

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Small Business Social Media Do’s and Don’ts


When you compare your social media statistics to your competition what are you measuring? Do you consider the accounts with the highest number of people following them the most successful? What about the pages with fun images, do those posts receive more Likes than your posts? Should you be measuring Likes? What about Shares?

As a small business owner, social media provides you with a great opportunity to connect in a personal way with your ideal buyer. It’s hard to look at a Facebook page with thousands of Likes and feel like you can compete, but the truth is, numbers are only a small part of an effective social strategy.

There is a lot of research that provides guidance on how frequently to post on different social platforms. A page which rarely posts content is not likely to convert Likes into customers because the page will rarely show up in a follower’s feed. Additionally, social pages that post daily aren’t guaranteed customers. If you have a Facebook page, but your ideal buyer prefers Instagram you are missing opportunities to connect with and convert clients.

By following these tips for small business social media do’s and don’ts you can compete with any social media account in your industry and connect on a personal level with your ideal buyer at every stage of their buyers’ journey.


Social Media Don’ts

Don’t Follow People Just for Follows

When you set up your Business Page on Facebook, you have an option to invite your friends to Like your page. This isn’t an option on Instagram and Twitter, so it’s harder to let people know you are on those social platforms. A growing trend with companies is to follow people and then unfollow them a few days later.

While this might seem like a great strategy to get people to connect with your accounts, from a social perspective you are essentially saying “Hi! Let me tell you all about me! I don’t need to learn about you; you aren’t as important as I am.” Companies who implement this practice are banking on you not realizing they no longer follow you. Their follow is disingenuous from the start and leaves a sour taste in potential consumers mouths.

So, instead of unfollowing people, you can do two things. First, set up business pages for Instagram and Twitter just like Facebook. That way your personal feed will be filled with friends and family, and you can take time to interact with customers when you are on your business profiles. Second, add popular, industry relevant hashtags to your profile and your posts. This way, people who are looking for information about your niche will easily find your posts. When you post great content consistently, they will like your page even without an invite.

Don’t Direct Message People Constantly
While direct messaging is a great way to connect personally with your ideal buyer, this action is stepping further into their personal space and should not be overdone. There are several ways you can use direct messaging (DM’s) to connect with a customer.

Think of DM’s in a similar way to email marketing. If someone reaches out to you via DM, that’s an obvious invitation to interact, otherwise reserve your outreach for important information such as making sure people are aware of a sale or product updates.

One way to increase personal interactions outside of direct messaging is to join groups. LinkedIn and Facebook are easy platforms to find and interact in groups of people in your industry.
Don’t Ignore Comments
Social media is a space for socializing. If someone comments on your post make sure you acknowledge their effort. This is especially important if someone asks a question. Even if you don’t have an immediate answer, a quick comment letting everyone who can see your page know you are working to find the information requested will go a long way in making a positive customer service impression. If you get a lot of comments it might not be realistic to respond to each one. However, simply liking a comment goes a long way and doesn’t take a lot of time.

Don’t Automate Everything
Using an automation tool like Hootsuite or Buffer is an excellent way to make sure you post regularly. Additionally, Facebook provides a tool for you to schedule content for your business page without using automation tools.

That said, part of social media best practices include sharing other people’s content. The best way to make sure you are a part of the current conversation is to take some time to interact in live time instead of automating. You should also posting interesting and helpful third-party content. This shows your audience that you care about them and that you are not always trying to sell something. Human interaction and posting helpful content are two additional opportunities to build trust with your community.

Social Media Do’s

Do Your Homework

Now that we’ve covered some of the social media don’ts, let’s cover some of the do’s. Social media is something that takes time, so it’s important to make sure you aren’t wasting your time or that of your employees.

Research and figure out what social media platforms your ideal buyers are on, and what time of day they are most active. Over time, your social media analytics and insights will help you narrow down the prime times for interaction. Assuming your clients are only on Facebook may be a mistake, especially with a younger target audience.

Be Social!
This is important. Don’t feel like you need to be on social media all day. A recent survey from Clutch revealed that 83% of customers expect a response in a day or less. So, if you schedule time once or twice a day to interact with social posts, you will be in great shape.

Be Flexible and Try New Things
Social media is constantly changing. It seems there is always a new feature or algorithm to explore. While this may seem frustrating, by staying flexible and taking time to learn how new features work you might find a fun way promote your company you wouldn’t have otherwise considered.

The great thing about features like Facebook Live and Instagram Stories is a casual video is normal so that you can post something quicker there than on YouTube. Especially since the stories automatically erase after 24-hours.

Keep Personal and Business Separate
It’s important to remember when you are on your company social media accounts that every post reflects on you and your company. Even memes can be divisive, so it’s a good rule to make sure to pause before you post.

Additionally, if you don’t want your clients to know about your children, then it’s best not to open the door. Keeping personal and business separate is easiest when you set up business accounts for your company.

Do Share Your Blog Content
Social media is the perfect place to post links to interesting and helpful content you have on your website. Posting a preview of the post and an image is a great way to encourage conversation and establish yourself as an industry expert.

Social media is an excellent tool to add to your inbound marketing tool belt, but just like everything else, it requires time and attention. Pay attention to these tips for your small business social media strategy to increase your opportunities to interact with your ideal buyer.







Source: https://www.business2community.com
Image Credit: Getty Images



ABOUT WNFP
Westchester Networking for Professionals (WNFP) is a business organization focused on providing our members and guests with an extraordinary networking experience, bringing business professionals together for the sole purpose of generating new relationships and developing new business opportunities. Not a member, learn how you can become a member and join this awesome group of professionals to connect and grow your business.

Stay Connected with WNFP!
Join WNFP Communities!

Friday, February 22, 2019

Top Ultimate Ways for Smart Business Owners to Overcome From Failures



Business has been found from all over the world whether you are a small business owner or non-profit enterprises, you have probably had multiple places to go hunting down metrics. The business ideas connect numerous applications you use on a regular basis were curating the data you want into one easy-to-read display. The most useful tips can be set up to give real-time insights which easy-to-view place, so you can use it more readily. The business analysis connects hundreds of applications you use on a regular basis, curating the data you want into one easy-to-read display where it also brings data together in one easy-to-view place, so you can use it more readily.

Business measure

Without measuring the performance, you cannot improve or predict the performance throughout the organization. The natural language analysis gives all aspects of your business and also helps most business owners to find with real-time information which helps the most business owners to quickly create beautiful reports and measure of the performance of business very effectively.

Better customer relationship

The customer relationships are one of the most significant strategies that can use to enhance numerous new customers and also to help to retain the existing customers to the business. By following the better customer relationship approach everyone can easily build up strong customer relationships to boost business retention that adds value to the overall customer experience.

Real-Time decision making

Decision making is one of the most important aspects for a business executive to take on the immediate decision when required. Today, business right decision making has been become the most integral part of the business performance and management as well to improve the business to the next higher level.

Time-saving

Time management is one of the most significant aspects where every business would consider it because working with time helps to improve the business and save your precious hours wasted in generating reports using traditional methods. By using the right business advanced methods every people consistently get you real-time results that help to work in a smart & efficient way.

Team collaboration

Everyone has a different aspect of viewing their business where the team collaboration tends to give alluring views and ideas towards the business. The increase of team collaboration take a much deeper dive into the details and to make sure you are collecting receivables promptly without leading to the failure. By getting into better Interactivity you may easily able to connect cause-and-effect or related impacts to spot and resolve business issues on right time.

Set smart goals

The goals give more clarity and have the ability to break down into easy, doable steps. where this would also help to overcome the failure and allows everyone to target and achieve their goal most successfully. Setting up the business goals means you can clarify your business ideas, focus, use your time and resources productively, and where it increase the chances of achieving what you would be needed in life further.

Reduce Expenses

Avoid unnecessary company expenses unless it is really necessary. Ideally, we should ask for clients and has ways to cut expenses that are both easy to implement and effective. It is a great way to track your revenue and expenses, giving you a powerful insight into your business’s profit margin.







Planning

The better planning leads to favorable outcomes by having a comprehensive and actionable strategy allows you to create more engagement, favorable and most ultimate outcomes within your organization. The better plan to overcome various problems and planning faced by successful enterprises is growing beyond management resources or skills.

Measure your outcomes

Often track all your business records and save money that you can try one by one your business measure without getting into too much hassle and also offer the great potential to save huge sums of cash over time with most advanced security. If you need to build a successful business or create a great working environment by analyze the business and get the most critical trait to succeed in business and measure the outcomes.

Paperless system

The paperless system makes the business to get into succeeding and exclusively used to get around the business and save money, and it was an upright easy method to obtain success in business without leading to failure. The creative and most advanced methods like this is a best enough to manage all the incoming calls and helps to achieve success in business further.

Maintain detailed records

Maintain the most detail record tells you that what level you are a business and can save the money and time rather than increasing costly over-time. We can plan our delivery, mailings or release to have maximum take benefit to achieve the business path further. By using this detailed business records we can also easily set it to choose the right path before you arrive home from work.

Fixing a failure

Fixing the failure rarely take the time to succeed in business instead of fixing at right time helps to develop a personal vision for your work or in your life where you should be consistently improving the business to achieve success further. By fixing the business failure helps to obtain greater level and make it easier to get to work.

Measure & Analyze

Analyzing the business is one of the most important aspects which is to be considered to verify the accuracy of your data to ensure it is of high quality. with the most advanced business data analysis and techniques you can easily measure the business goals to ensure that you analyze and make the risk adjustment data appropriately without depending on the starting point and the goals.

By going with the exactness of information in business we can easily able to track every record without the dependencies of others. This is a straightforward way to reduce your enterprise work stress and trying to achieve or maintain business profitability.

These most challenging aspects help to develop the business and increase the profitable incomes.






Source: https://tweakyourbiz.com
Image Credit: Depositphotos




ABOUT WNFP
Westchester Networking for Professionals (WNFP) is a business organization focused on providing our members and guests with an extraordinary networking experience, bringing business professionals together for the sole purpose of generating new relationships and developing new business opportunities. Not a member, learn how you can become a member and join this awesome group of professionals to connect and grow your business.

Stay Connected with WNFP!
Join WNFP Communities!

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Don’t Waste Time! 5 Ways to Improve your Business this Year


The new year is always a great time to get organized and work on your business. All the holiday excitement and stress is behind you. The kids are back in school. And you’re energized and motivated to make this your business’ best year ever.

You’ve probably thought about your marketing plan, long-term strategic vision, and maybe tax strategies, but what about the legal foundation for your company? Are there any loose ends to tie up as you move into a new year? Don’t let any minor administrative requirements fall through the cracks and put you at risk for major trouble, such as losing your personal liability protection. Here are five things to think about to get your business off to a great start:

Incorporate or Form an LLC for your Business

If you haven’t incorporated or formed an LLC for your business yet, now is a good time to get started. While it’s perfectly legal to operate a business without being an official LLC or corporation, you are putting your personal assets at risk. When you incorporate or form an LLC, this puts a level of protection between your personal assets (personal savings, personal property, children’s college fund, etc.) and your business. If your business is ever sued or has bad debt, your personal property may be shielded from any judgment.

Whether you choose to form an LLC or corporation, the start of a new year is the perfect time to formalize your business structure. You’ll be laying the legal foundation to grow your business in the coming years, while also protecting your personal assets.

Close an Inactive Business

Did you form a business that you’re no longer operating? If you formed an LLC or Corporation, you need to formally terminate it with the state. It’s not enough to say that you’re not operating the business or haven’t had any revenue or activity for the year. Until you officially file the paperwork to close it, you’re still on the hook for any annual fees, legal filings (like an annual report) and tax returns.

You need to file an “Articles of Dissolution” or “Certificate of Termination” document with the Secretary of State in whatever state your Corporation or LLC was formed. In most cases, you’ll need to settle any owed taxes before you can do this. And while you’re at it, cancel any permits or business licenses that the business holds.


Renew Business Licenses and Permits in the New Year

Most businesses need some sort of local license or permit to legally operate – for example, a sales or reseller license or a health department permit. Many of these licenses require renewal. If you have any licenses or permits, you should contact your local entity to find of what needs to be renewed when. And if you have never looked into permits or licenses, you can contact your local government office or visit BusinessLicenses.com to find out what types of licenses you need for your business.

File your Annual Report or Other Paperwork

If you’ve gone through the work to incorporate your business, make sure you keep it in good standing. Most states require some form of an annual report filing for corporations and/or LLCs. The deadlines and specific requirements vary by state. Check with your state’s secretary of state office to find out your specific filing deadline. And then make sure to get this paperwork in. Missing deadlines will result in late fees. In worst case scenarios, companies fall into bad standing with the state for not filing.

If you’re having trouble keeping up with your filing requirements, some document filing companies offer a free service to send you automated alerts when a deadline is coming up.

Invest in your Business for the New Year

While I normally don’t encourage business owners to spend any more than they need to, this is a good time to think about any expenses you may have been putting off. Hopefully you have a good sense of your business’ profits and losses from last year and can determine if there’s any extra profit that should be invested back in the business. Invest in a new computer or equipment to maximize your tax deductions for 2019. Consider hiring a contractor to help refresh your social media strategy or website. Or maybe look for a new trade show or conference to attend this year.

In addition to investing in your business, don’t forget to invest in yourself. From one entrepreneur to another, this is hard work – and often 365 days a year. In order to stay sane, healthy and happy throughout the year, make sure to continue your interests outside of the business too!








Source: https://smallbiztrends.com
Image Credit: Shutterstock





ABOUT WNFP
Westchester Networking for Professionals (WNFP) is a business organization focused on providing our members and guests with an extraordinary networking experience, bringing business professionals together for the sole purpose of generating new relationships and developing new business opportunities. Not a member, learn how you can become a member and join this awesome group of professionals to connect and grow your business.

Stay Connected with WNFP!
Join WNFP Communities!

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

How to Beat Procrastination As You Grow Your Business

Procrastination is an odd compulsion. Everyone has experienced it, but the underlying reasons can be tough to pin down.

After all, procrastination delays the very activities that bring people closer to their goals -- whether that’s building a thriving business or stronger triceps. So why don’t humans just sprint toward that brighter, fitter future?
The science.
Scientific studies of procrastination have spiked over the past 20 years. Researchers once considered the issue a basic time-management problem, but they now view it as a complex and highly individual phenomena.

“True procrastination is a complicated failure of self-regulation,” author Eric Jaffe wrote in Observer magazine. "Experts define it as the voluntary delay of some important task that we intend to do, despite knowing that we'll suffer as a result. A poor concept of time may exacerbate the problem, but an inability to manage emotions seems to be its very foundation."

Greek philosophers used the word akrasia to describe the state of acting against one's better judgement. Building on this term, author James Clear believes everyone has a "Present Self" that desires instant gratification and a "Future Self" that prizes long-term rewards. "When the time comes to make a decision," Clear wrote, "you are no longer making a choice for your Future Self. Now you are in the present moment, and your brain is thinking about the Present Self." 


The personal motivation.

Back in 2006, I often struggled with the snooze button. When the buzzing began at 5 a.m. I’d ask myself, “Should I stay in bed or should I spend a few hours on my business?”

I was working as a programmer for a New York-based media company and building my company, JotForm, on the side. I learned a lot about myself while juggling a full-time job and scaling a startup -- including how to battle my own procrastination demons.

I started to consider why I was delaying certain tasks. Once I identified the root cause, I could plan to reclaim my productivity. This approach might sound simple, but most advice doesn’t probe the source of the problem. Instead, society most often teaches people to simply push through any feelings of resistance.

The “just do it” approach works sometimes, but it’s not sustainable. If you're repeatedly avoiding specific tasks, there’s an underlying reason -- and odds are it's highly personal.

Here are four factors that might be behind your bad habit, along with some ideas to help you conquer each scenario.

1. Progress doesn’t feel fast enough.

Think about the last time you started a new project or business endeavor. You probably felt excited and energized by the challenge. A couple months (or years) later, the shine dulled. Maybe you felt discouraged and even a little bored. You were fighting both time and biology.

Dopamine often is described as the brain’s “reward chemical,” activated by the ping of a smartphone or a heaping plate of pasta. But new research shows dopamine is more closely related to reward-seeking behavior than operating as a reward itself.

When your brain encounters novelty, it releases dopamine. The natural chemical motivates you to search for a reward (there's that exploring and pushing forward again). But when the project's novelty wears off, your mind rebels. Your motivation drops as your brain thinks, "My hard work isn't being rewarded. This isn't fun anymore."

The "Present Self" and its demand for instant gratification makes it even tougher to force yourself to open the spreadsheet yet again or to keep chipping away at a frustrating product feature.


BJ Fogg, a behavioral scientist at Stanford University, suggests you can fight the dopamine drop by setting up “small wins” and celebrating each milestone. According to Fogg, every task should be accompanied by a simple trigger. Imagine you want to create an online course. You could commit to writing a paragraph after every glass of water, then continue this triggered behavior throughout the day.

Once the task is done, it’s time for the small celebration. You could listen to a favorite song, take a brief walk, or read a great book. Repeat this process until you’ve achieved your goal. Small wins reward your novelty-seeking brain and nudge you toward the finish line. The feedback loop also establishes a powerful habit that can eliminate the need for motivation entirely.



2. You don’t know where to start.

It's common to feel overwhelmed in today's fast-paced world. Seemingly endless to-do lists can make it feel as if there's no good place to start. Unfortunately, divided attention often leads people to procrastinate in a sneaky way: They engage first in low-value activities such as emptying the inbox or checking social media.

Founders are especially prone to these feelings because there’s rarely a clear path forward. If you're like most entrepreneurs, you also may be wearing a lot of hats or juggling a packed schedule. In talking to fellow entrepreneurs, I’ve learned it’s normal to feel uncertain -- particularly when starting something new. Remind yourself it’s OK not to have the answers. Give yourself permission to start where you can.

Brainstorming solutions with friends, mentors and advisors can help you establish clear priorities. Seek out people who aren't lost in the weeds of your business' day-to-day demands. They often can help you realize where your time is best spent and what you should delegate.

Systems also can help squash procrastination. My family owns a small olive farm, and I join them every year for the annual harvest. The whole operation runs like a well-oiled machine. Everyone knows each step of the process, making procrastination almost impossible.
3. You're afraid to fail.

Founders love to repeat the mantra “fail fast, fail often.” Below the bravado, however, many live in fear of making bad decisions.

During a recent visit to Silicon Valley, writer Rob Asghar spoke to one unusually candid founder. The man, who asked to remain anonymous, told Asghar, “Many people here do talk about embracing failure, but that’s usually just hype."

Some fear failure so intensely they cut corners. Others might delay launch dates, miss deadlines or obsess over small details instead of releasing a beta version. I'm not immune. I struggled with perfectionism during the early days of my business. Perhaps we could have grown faster, but I was a bootstrapped founder. I didn’t have a board or investors monitoring my every move. When the fear of failure crept in, I could be gentle with myself and then carry on.

Joseph Ferrari, an associate professor of psychology at Chicago’s De Paul University, calls people who experience fear-based procrastination “avoiders.” Whether they’re avoiding failure or even success, they’re deeply concerned about other people’s opinions. “They would rather have others think they lack effort than ability,” Ferrari wrote.

High standards aren’t necessarily a bad thing. Everyone knows success takes grit, perseverance and strong principles. BeyoncĂ© and Serena Williams are two self-described perfectionists who have harnessed this tendency with amazing results.

“Perfectionism and procrastination are linked,” Boston University psychologist Ellen Hendriksen wrote, “but it’s not necessarily the sky-high standards that slow you down, but the sky-high standards mixed with a belief that your performance is tied to your self-worth. That combination can grind you to a halt.”

You are not your work. And untangling the difference between who we are and what we achieve can help to stop to fear-based procrastination.
4. You don’t like the task.

Some activities aren’t fun. Few people enjoy going to the dentist, doing their taxes or visiting the DMV. Building a business also requires many less-than-thrilling activities. When there are so many moving parts to tackle, who wants to spend precious hours invoicing?

This is perhaps the most mundane type of procrastination. People put off dull, boring, or uninspiring tasks because they don’t feel like tackling them.

“Somewhere along the way, we’ve all bought into the idea, without consciously realizing it, that to be motivated and effective we need to feel like we want to take action,” social psychologist Heidi Grant wrote. “I really don’t know why we believe this, because it is 100% nonsense.”

Grant suggests that instead of waiting for motivational lightning to strike, you apply a technique called “if-then planning.” First, identify the steps required to complete a task. Next -- and most important -- determine where and when you’ll act. Tell yourself, for example, "If it’s 10 am, then I’ll close my email and research design agencies."

This process doesn’t require willpower. And that’s important, because a lack of willpower, in the traditional sense, might lead you to postpone things in the first place. Embrace your limited resolve, Grant recommends, and use if-then planning as a backup tool.
The power of self-knowledge.

Everyone has different motivations, goals and personalities, so it makes sense that everyone also has different reasons for procrastinating. Once you understand what’s blocking you, it’s easier to choose the best solution. Ignore the other hacks and don’t worry if “expert” advice falls down.

After all, it's more important to know yourself, experiment and stick with what works for you. And take comfort in knowing every human who's lived has faced the same challenge, from wise ancient Greeks to Silicon Valley startup founders.

Source: https://www.entrepreneur.com
Image Credit: laflor | Getty Images




ABOUT WNFP
Westchester Networking for Professionals (WNFP) is a business organization focused on providing our members and guests with an extraordinary networking experience, bringing business professionals together for the sole purpose of generating new relationships and developing new business opportunities. Not a member, learn how you can become a member and join this awesome group of professionals to connect and grow your business.

Stay Connected with WNFP!
Join WNFP Communities!