Goal Setting for Success in 2015

Shelagh Cummins
December 15, 2014
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Goal Setting for Success in 2015 Click here to download your printable worksheet to help with your Goal Setting for Success in 2015 You can’t start off the new year still hanging on to last year. No matter how much you succeeded or failed in the goals you set for yourself in 2014, you have to assess, plan, and move on for 2015. To help you start the new year with a clean slate and set up for success, download this short worksheet to guide you through this exercise. Step 1: Look back at 2014. Think about the goals you set for yourself. Whether or not you achieved them is NOT what we’re interested in today. What we want to do is understand WHY you did or did not meet them. Were they unrealistic? Were they specific enough? Did you even set the right goals? Once you have given those a little … Continued

5 Strategies to Annihilate Your Business Competition in 2015

Shelagh Cummins
December 6, 2014
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Competition in business is a blessing, for without it, we wouldn’t be motivated to improve. - Nabil M Jamal Business competition is a guarantee – especially once you start meeting with success. You have two choices when competitors start nipping at your heels – either focus and obsess over it, or focus on you – and being the best you that you can be. Here are 5 Strategies To Annihilate Your Business Competition on 2015 1. Be First I remember talking to Julie Cole from Mabels Labels a few years back – I asked how they had so successfully risen above their competition, time and time again. She said it straight. You have to be first to market. I have hung onto those words ever since. It’s important to know what your competitors are up to, but it’s up to you to be innovative, to be different, to be the first to launch a … Continued

Entrepreneur Success Interview: Cathy Thompson

Shelagh Cummins
October 17, 2014
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Meet Cathy Thompson – the founder and owner of Beyond The Classroom. Watch this interview and learn why you and your knowledge is your most precious commodity – and how your money story influences your business. Cathy Thompson is the founder and owner of Beyond the Classroom Ltd. She began tutoring over 20 years ago, doing one-on-one sessions with students in their homes and noticed huge improvements in the students’ grades and confidence. Over time, more and more tutors have sought out positions at Beyond the Classroom Ltd. because of the philosophy of the company and because they believe that one-on-one tutoring is the most effective way to increase grades and confidence. Cathy has a degree in Psychology and Sociology from McMaster University along with a post-graduate degree in Continuing and Adult Education from the University of Saskatchewan. She also has diplomas in Addictions Studies from McMaster University and Accounting … Continued

Entrepreneur Success Interview: Kelsey Ramsden

Shelagh Cummins
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Meet Kelsey Ramsden – an award winning entrepreneur and media superstar. Watch as she shares her secrets to success, her journey to running several million dollar companies – and how she feels a business isn’t just a path to profits. It’s who you are. Bio: Kelsey Ramsden is Canada’s Top Female Entrepreneur, Entrepreneur Magazine writer, ranked #1 by Profit and Chatelaine Magazines in 2012 & 2013. She has founded and run businesses as diverse as construction and children’s toys. As President of Belvedere Place Development, a land development and construction project, she wasn’t afraid to roll up her sleeves and strap on some work boots and get down in the dirt. As founder of Spark Play, a monthly play subscription service – as much for parents as for their kids – she lands herself back on the ground. Formerly a wayward student, born of generations of true grit and determination, … Continued

Grow Your Business – Lead With Your ‘Why’

Shelagh Cummins
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People don’t buy what you do – they buy WHY you do it. -Simon Sinek The universe has a funny way of working sometimes. Two things happened almost simultaneously to make me stop and rethink how I run my business. 1.  Someone asked me a question which I couldn’t answer immediately. “Shelagh, why do you do what you do?” 2. I stumbled across Simon Sinek’s Ted Talk about Starting With Why. Both events stopped me dead in my tracks. I knew in my heart why I do this work, but I didn’t know how to articulate it. So I did what I always do when I need to figure something out – I drove, I walked and I percolated. And it came to me at a moment I was least suspecting it – when I was introducing myself on a coaching call. In fact it just flew out of my mouth, rolled off … Continued

Earn More, Work Less: Summer Sanity Savers

Shelagh Cummins
August 18, 2014
2 comments.

  Are you surviving the summer months? Let’s face it – the minute our kids’ schedules change, our schedules change too. So how can we keep our businesses humming and continue bringing in income without having to be as connected and as hands-on as we are throughout the school year? Here are three key strategies to help you earn more, work less and stay sane this summer.  1.  Set Goals.  Since we’re talking about only a two to three month period of time, let’s set some micro-goals for our businesses. What do you absolutely need to have happen over the summer?  Get specific and stay focused.  If you’re concentrating on sales, how much do you need sales to increase by, or to maintain, to keep your lights on?  Once you have your goal in mind—that small micro-goal—break that down into two or three milestones to get you there.  If boosting your marketing efforts … Continued

3 Reasons Your Team Isn’t Working Out

Shelagh Cummins
July 23, 2014
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  So you hire somebody, and after a few weeks you get the feeling it’s just not working out.  It’s hard to pinpoint exactly what the problem is, but you know something is off.  Learning these three C’s was such an “Aha!” moment for me.  They really enabled me to quickly and accurately evaluate the situation so I could get things back on track and headed toward success.  I hope they’re as helpful and powerful for you as they were—and still are—for me.  I take no credit for this – I was working Shawn Driscoll, a fabulous business coach, when she helped me see the light about leading a team. These are her teachings. The first C is CLARITY.  Remember, the people you hire are not mind readers, and they may be delivering exactly what you’ve asked for but in a different way than you would do it yourself.  Are … Continued

5 Questions to Ask Before You Hire in Your Business

Shelagh Cummins
July 16, 2014
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  I think probably the biggest objection I hear when faced with the question “Are you ready to hire?” is “But Shelagh, I can’t afford to hire right now.”  My answer to that is always, always, always “Can you afford NOT to hire right now?”  Now I am a huge proponent of not going into debt, so don’t hear what I’m not saying—I am NOT saying it’s a good idea to hire at a detriment to your business.  But what I AM saying is we need to ask ourselves this clarifying question when we are deciding whether it is prudent to hire:  “Can I afford to do this myself?”  The following questions can help you decide if you can afford to do it yourself:1.  Is the position you’re considering hiring out a primary service or offering from your business?  In other words, is this your chief moneymaking talent?  Is it what’s … Continued

What Type of Business Owner Are You?

Shelagh Cummins
July 3, 2014
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What Type of Business Owner Are You? “Most entrepreneurs are merely technicians with an entrepreneurial seizure. Most entrepreneurs fail because you are working IN your business rather than ON your business.”  ~Michael Gerber If you haven’t read Michael Gerber’s The E-Myth Revisited, I highly recommend it.  I love how he talk about the different of business owner “personalities”:  technician, entrepreneur, and manager.  In the same way that we discussed the MONEY PIE as it relates to our financial systems, no one person is all technician or all entrepreneur or all manager.  Rather, we are a “pie” made up of different variables, some of which have a tendency to trip us up, and some that are our biggest assets.  But it’s that really knowing ourselves that helps us to better evaluate where we are in our business and how to take those next steps in pursuing our vision.Take a look at these three … Continued

Slice Your Money Pie

Shelagh Cummins
June 26, 2014
6 comments.

Let’s talk about two of our favorite things today:  money… and pie. Just like everything in business, having a solid plan when it comes to finances can be the difference between success and failure.  It is imperative that we align our financial plan with our vision and check back often to be sure we’re on the right track. I am a “percentages girl,” so my favorite way to allocate finances (AKA – revenue) is the “money pie.”  You get to allocate what the percent of each slice is – just make sure it’s not 100% income! Remember—just because you’re MAKING money doesn’t mean you get to KEEP it.  There is gross revenue, which is the whole circle of your pie, and there is net income, or what you get to pay yourself.  And that’s just one slice. When revenue comes in your door, one of the biggest mistakes is to use … Continued